John V. Gunnison, the popular High Sheriff of Sullivan County, son of Vinal and Eliza (Baker) Gunnison, was born in Goshen, N.H., on February 27, 1837. Ephraim Gunnison, father of Vinal, was a pioneer settler of Goshen, where he cleared the wild land by the labor of his hands. A hard worker and a man of great vitality, he lived to be eighty-five years old. His wife, Deborah, died at eighty-seven years of age. He was a Methodist Episcopal in religion, a Democrat in politics.
Their son Vinal was the fifth son in a family of seven children. He followed farming all his life on the old farm on which he was born. It was a large farm of about six hundred acres, and came to be one of the best in Goshen. He died at the age of sixty in the year 1858. His wife died in 1873, at the age of seventy-two years. They were attendants of the Congregational church. Vinal Gunnison was always a Whig. He held several town offices, among them that of Selectman and Overseer of the Poor. Of his seven children three are now deceased-Marian, Arvin Nye, and Amos B. The survivors are: Mrs. Sarah Ann Brickett, who lives in Mendota, Ill.; Eliza Chandler, who lives in Salem, Ore.; John V.; and Horace B., who lives in Phillipsville, Cal.
John V., the third son, lived at home with his parents in Goshen until he went away to school, his educational course being completed in the academies at Meriden and New London, N.H. He subsequently engaged in farming and lumbering on the old homestead, dealing largely in stock and running a steam saw-mill. In 1888 he removed to Newport, though he still owns the old place and keeps there about twenty cows for milk. In Newport he deals in horses, carriages, and sleighs. He was elected to his present office of High Sheriff in 1894, and was re-elected in 1896.
He married January 16, 1867, Angie Carr, who was born in Hillsborough, N.H., September 12, 1846, daughter of Robert and Claora (Goodale) Carr. Her grandfather, the first Robert Carr, was one of the early settlers of the place; and her father followed agriculture on the old farm, where he spent his whole life. She has two brothers and four sisters, all living. Her brother, Elisha Hatch Carr, is a prominent business man of Newport, N.H.
Mr. and Mrs. Gunnison have had four children, three of whom are living-Belle, Sadie H., Claora A., and Alice M. Belle Gunnison, born in Goshen, N.H., December 30, 1868, was educated at the town schools of Goshen and Newport, N.H. After completing her course of study, she taught school for a while, and was considered a successful instructor and good disciplinarian. Since then she has been a valuable assistant in the post-office at Newport, N.H., having now held the position for eight years. Sadie H. was born in Goshen, June 9, 1870. After graduating from the high school of Newport, N.H., she taught school three years, for which work she seemed well fitted, and, like her sister, was considered a successful teacher. She then entered upon Newport, N.H. Claora A., born in Goshen, December 27, 1873, attended the schools of Goshen and Newport, also the Bradford Female Seminary, Bradford, Mass.; and, having finished her preparatory studies, she entered the schoolroom as an instructor, and is now an assistant teacher in the Newport High School. Alice M., born in Goshen, April 11, 1877, died May 30, 1895. She was a very bright and promising young lady, and was an attendant of the high school at Newport, when that dreaded disease, typhoid fever, took her away in the bud of womanhood.
Mrs. Gunnison and her daughters are members of the Congregational church, where Mr. Gunnison also attends divine service. A Republican in politics, he held the office of County Commissioner in 1872, 1873, and 1874; and in 1885 he was Representative to the General Court. He is a member of Mount Vernon Lodge, A. F. & A. M., at Newport; a Royal Arch Mason; a Knight Templar; and also a member of Sugar River Grange, P. of H., at Newport. Mr. Gunnison is a successful farmer and trader, well versed in horse flesh. He has been a very active man, and has made his own way in the world.