The late Henderson and Caroline Cummins, who were very prominent in making the history of Madison County, were brought to our state by their parents from Virginia at age six and seven in the year 1833. Their parents were endowed with the courage and stability to endure the hardships that were encountered by all pioneers. So it was that Henderson Cummins and Caroline Trout grew up as playmates and the age of 21 and 22 were married by Rev Horn of the Methodist Church; and at once began housekeeping in a one-room log cabin on rented land. This one room served them as living room, bedroom, kitchen and dining room. Soon, however, they were able to buy the tract of eighty acres of land on which they had gone to housekeeping. From that very
humble start in the log cabin, they later became the largest land owners in the community, just buying one small tract after another until they owned and operated over a thousand acres of Madison County's good earth.
Henderson Cummins, one of the oldest residents of Fall Creek Twp., Henry Co., Indiana was born in Monroe county, Virginia, ( now West Virginia), May 7, 1827, and was but six years of age when brought to Henry County, Indiana by his parents, Woodson and Nancy (Ellison) Cummins, who settled in Fall Creek, a half mile above Middletown. Three years later, they sold the land and bought a farm a mile and a half northwest of Middletown, and on this Woodson Cummins passed the remainder of his life, dying at the age of forty three, having first developed a small farm. He had a large family, five sons and three daughters who were to be cared for and educated by his widow. At this juncture Henderson and his elder brother, Overton, assumed charge of the place and cared for the mother. Later she removed to Kansas whither two of her daughters had preceded her and where she died at the age of sixty-five years.
Soon after attaining his majority Henderson Cummins married Miss Caroline Trout, daughter of Levi and Margaret (Thompson) Trout, who lived on an adjoining farm. The Trout family came from Rockingham county, Virginia, where Caroline was born and she was ten years of age when her parents came to Henry county, where she and Henderson grew up as playmates, Caroline being also about twenty-one years old at the time of her marriage. The young couple started housekeeping on rented land, but Mr. Cummins had a half interest in a tract elsewhere and this he sold a year later and purchased the eighty acres on which he began housekeeping. A year or two later, he sold this tract and purchased one hundred and sixty acres on Sly Fork, in Madison Co., three miles west of Middletown, Henry county., about twenty acres of which land had been cleared up, but upon which there was no dwelling. He erected a hewed-log cabin, went in debt about four hundred dollars and added an eighty acre tract on which there was a good farmhouse. He next added one hundred and sixty acres adjoining and that was the homestead until he retired to Middletown about seven years ago. He still owns the farm, however, and had it then cleared off almost entirely, selling a great deal of wood in Middletown at three dollars per cord, and realizing good prices for walnut and beech. He raised considerable stock and one season, with another bought and shipped exclusively.
Mr. Cummins has given over six hundred acres of land to his children,besides considerable cash in order to equalize their respective fortunes. He was an original stockholder in the first gas company that developed the wells in Henry county. In politics, Mr. Cummins was raised a Democrat, but in local affairs votes for the candidate best qualified to fill the office sought. The family are members of the Christian church at Middletown, of which Mr. Cummins is a trustee and fraternally he has been a Mason for about forty years; he and his wife are charter members of Eastern Star Lodge No.110, in which Mrs. Cummins usually holds some official position. To Mr. and Mrs. Cummins have been born eight children, in the following order: Sanford, who lives in Madison county; Sylvester, who passed his life on the home farm and died at the age of twenty two years, a few days prior his marriage; Walter, farming in the highlands of Tennessee on account of his health, Eleanor, the wife of L. A. Pickering, who is engaged in farming and dairying in Fall Creek township, Henry county, Indiana; Amanda, wife of John Prigg, also of Fall Creek; Elizabeth, married to Henry Hardy, a merchant of Franklinville; Cora, wife of Lincoln Summers of Fall Creek Twp. and Mary, wife of Simon Thornburg, of New Castle, Indiana.