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The subject of this sketch was born in Kent county, Delaware, October 26, 1806. His grandparents, Thomas and Rebecca (Cubbidge) Needels, came from England, and settled in the above name county and State. They had a large family of children, of whom Cubbidge, the father of the subject of this notice, was the fifth son. He was born in 1785, and married, in Delaware, Rebecca Cook, and emigrated to Ohio in 1810. His wife died a few weeks after their settlement in Madison township, and about two years afterward he was married to Sarah Harris, and in 1821, removed to Plain township. He died in 1840. By his first marriage he had three children--two sons, and a daughter who died when eighteen months or two years old. Thomas, the elder of the two sons, born September 21, 1805, married his cousin, Rachel Needels, and died February 25, 1861. His widow is still living and is now seventy-six years of age.
George Needels, the younger son, and the subject of this sketch remained on the farm with his father until he was twenty-one, when he went to Morrow county, and hired to a farmer, whom he assisted in clearing up a farm, remaining one year. He then returned to this county and worked a farm, in connection with his brother in Madison township for about a year, when he concluded to engage in some other pursuit. He had no means, but he believed he could do something that would be more remunerative than to work by the month, for eight dollars per month--the wages usually received by farm laborers at that time. He went to Cincinnati, and engaged in selling books keeping stand on the river, and selling to passengers on the boats, and to others the popular books of the day. He was quite successful in this venture, and during the three years that he was engaged in it (when he left the city on account of the prevalence of cholera), he accumulated enough money to buy eighty acres of land in Madison township, this county [Franklin]. Since then Mr. Needels has been engaged in farming, in which, also, he has met with complete success. He has, at various times, added to his original purchase, and now owns a large amount of first-rate and well improved land. His life has been an actively industrious one, attending strictly to his chosen occupation, the results of which are of the most substantial and desirable character.
While not a member of any church, he is liberal with his means in the support of religious societies, and was one of the largest contributors to the erection of Asbury chapel. Mr. Needels is unmarried.
Thomas and Rachel Needels, the parents of the subject of this notice, were natives of the State of Delaware, and were among the early pioneers of Madison, as noted elsewhere in the history of the township. He was born September 21, 1805, and died February 25, 1861. She was born April 16, 1803, and is still living in the same vicinity, in Madison, where she settled with her parents so many years ago.
The subject of this sketch was the third in a family of seven children, and was born February 14, 1832. He was brought up on the farm, and enjoyed such advantages for the acquirement of the education as the common schools of his neighborhood afforded, until he was about fourteen years of age, when he attended Central college, in Blendon township. He was married, January 10, 1854, to Miss Eliza A. Gray, daughter of Thomas and Mary Gray, who was born in Truro township, this county [Franklin], March 20, 1832. Mr. Needels located on the farm where his family now reside, which he received from his father, and by his industry and enterprise was making it one of the most desirable farms in the township, when his life was cut short by accident. On the twelfth day of February, 1874, whole attempting to dismount from a horse, his foot caught in the stirrup, the animal became frightened, and running, dragged Mr. Needels around the barnyard and kicked him in the side and breast. Two of his ribs were broken, one of which penetrated his right lung. The accident occurred on Monday evening, and he died Wednesday morning, February 14th. His untimely death was deplored by the entire community in which he resided, as he was a valued citizen, and enjoyed the confidence and respect of all who knew him.
The children of George W. and Eliza Needels are three in number, as follows: Mary Bell, born July 4, 1857, who is now the wife of Benjamin Bowman, of Madison; Laura Alice, born December 17, 1859; and Thomas Stanton, born August 9, 1862.