Eli C. Morris

Submitted to the West Virginia Biographies Project by:
Tina Hursh
December 9, 1999

The History of West Virginia, Old and New
Published 1923, The American Historical Society, Inc.,
Chicago and New York, Volume II
Pg. 70-71

Eli C. Morris. In the old Keystone State Eli C. Morris was born March 14, 1845,
in Washington County. He was a son of Samuel Morris, a representative of one
of the ster-ng old Pennsylvania families long identified with that gracious
and noble religious organization, the Society of Friends, more commonly known
as Quakers. In Pennsylvania Eli C. Morris was reared to manhood, received
such educational advantages as were offerred in the schools of the period, and
in his youth learned the trade of millwright, in connection with which he
assisted in the erection of many flour mills, besides eventually becoming a
successful mill operator. In connection with his vocation he came to West
Virginia, where for a time he operated a mill at Elizabeth. Thereafter he
built and equipped a mill at Morristown, which was named in his honor, and
after operating this mill for a time he removed with his family to Washington
County, Ohio, where he passed the remainder of his life and where he died at
Lower Salem in 1914. He was a birthright member of the Society of Friends, and
in his unostentatious career he examplified the sterling characteristics ever
associated with the name of Quaker. His father was implacable in his
opposition to the institution of slavery, and the Morris home in Pennsylvania
was made a station on the historic underground railway which enabled many
slaves to escape bondagein the period leading up to the Civil war. Though the
customs and teachings of the Society of Friends deprecate war in all forms, the
youthful patriotism of Eli C. Morris was such that he transceded these teachings
when the Civil war was precipitated on the nation. He believed
the preservation of the Union was of greater importance than his observance of
the tenets of the faith in which he had been reared, and accordingly he
enlisted in Troop B, Sixth Pennslyvania Cavalry, with which he saw active
service under command of General Sheridan in the historic Shenadoah campaign.
His first wife, whose maiden name was Elizabeth McDonald, is survived by one
son. His second wife, Eliza J. (Winland) Morris, still resides in Washington
County, Ohio. Of this union there are two sons and two daughters, and of the
number James G. is the only representative in West Virginia.

James G. Morris is a native of West Virginia, his birth having occured at
Morristown, Wirt County, but he was reared and educated in Washington County,
Ohio. He is now president of the Arrow Lumber Company, one of the important
industrial and comercial concerns of Parkersburg.

Mr. Morris has completed the circle of Scottish Rite Masonry, in which he
has received the thirty-second degree, besides being affiliated with the Mystic
Shrine. He takes deep interest in all that concerns the welfare and
advancement of his home city and is essentially progressive and public spirited.
Mr. Morris wedded Miss Jennie E. Watson, and they have one son, Harold W.