He was born July 1, 1777, in Maryland, the 7th of 15 children born to George Layport and Nancy McCaslin. He moves with the family to Cadiz, Ohio where he resides through the 1830 census before moving to Rush Creek, Logan County in western Ohio in 1835. Between 1804 and 1805 he married Margaret Blakely (born 1778, died August 15 1848, at Logan, Ohio); they had 11 children.
On December 16, 1811 Abraham purchased from his father, George Layport, 130 acres (1/4 section) of the section of land (640 acres) which George had purchased from the U.S. Government in 1806. The deed stated that Abraham Layport, son of the said George and Nancy Layport, was granted this land for the sum of $53. This deed is the only document that directly confirms that Abraham was the son of George and Nancy. Abraham also purchased additional land in Harrison County in 1818 and 1822.
During the War of 1812, Abraham was a Lieutenant in the Ohio State Militia, serving in Captain Nicholas Davis’ Company, Russell’s Battalion.
Abraham was a lieutenant in the Company under Captain Nicholas Davis, Russell’s Battalion in the War of 1812. Abraham’s pay and muster cards indicate that he served from 26 August 1814 to 25 February 1815, was paid $30 per month and was stationed in Detroit — 340 miles from his first place of rendezvous in Cadiz. He was probably involved in protecting Detroit from a possible British attack from Canada which did not occur. Those forces were concentrated in the Lake Champlain area where they were defeated. Detroit had been surrendered to the British in August 1812 and not regained until Admiral Perry destroyed the British fleet on Lake Erie in September 1813. As a result, the British were forced to retreat eastward from the Detroit region. At the time Abraham came on active duty in Cadiz, Ohio, the British had just burned Washington, D.C. Subsequent British defeats, however, forced the English to sign the Treaty of Ghent on Christmas Eve, 1814 with the U.S. Senate ratifying the treaty 17 February 1815. Abraham was discharged 25 February 1815 and allowed 17 days to return to Cadiz ( the details of Abraham’s military career are compliments of J Richards of Colorado Springs, descendant of Abraham Layport through his son, Bezaleel…Thanks, Richard)
Ohio was at the center of most of the actual fighting during this little remembered war. In brief, many “Hawks” in Washington felt that with the British tied down in an endless war with Napoleon, that Canada was ripe for the taking. In reality, despite a war fever that enticed some 24,000 Ohioans to enlist, the US was ill prepared for war with the British Empire. Washington was burned by the British and we got a national anthem. Expeditions to Canada were disasters and the British soon took the war to Ohio. The Ohio forces managed to withstand two sieges of Fort Meigs, near modern day Toledo, in 1813.
The British Indian allies were disgusted with the British and would continue their fight against the settlers following the war. Abraham’s actual roll is still unknown but he knew how to raise a family.
It is asserted in some records that after Margaret’s death, he married Juliann Whalen (born about 1781, Logan County, Ohio). They then had 4 children. She would have been 57 and Abe 61 at their marriage. If true, his powers were almost Biblical.
Abraham and his clan move in 1835 to the western Ohio town of Rush Creek near the land development known as Rushslyvania. The reasons are not entirely clear except that Abe saw an opportunity in the west. As a family of farmers, land was the draw and the family was part of the national Western Movement.
The 1850 Census for Rush Creek Township in Logan County makes it clear that 73 year old Abraham had taken root. Abraham is alone as Margaret had died in 1848. He is a farmer, as is his son Ephraim. Two other sons Abraham W. and John describe their occupations as Carpenters. John is married to Verlinda Harrison, the second cousin of the future President. John will build the first commercial building and become its proprietor in 1851. Abraham W.’s son, Zephaniah enlisted in the 23rd Ohio for the Civil War. At Antietam he was wounded in the head but recovered to go on to a teaching career and serving as the justice of the Peace. I know this looking at the honorable members of Abraham’s clan may seem pointless, but the reasons will become apparent when I start to focus on Abe’s son, Samuel, from whom I am descended.