JAMES S. CANAAN, farmer, sec. 21, Grant Tp., was born July 12, 1844, in Hardin Co., Ohio, and is a son of Jehu and Sarah L. Canaan. (See sketch of Asher L. Canaan).
At the age of 11 years Mr. Canaan set out to care for himself and to aid in the maintenance of his father's family. Just after he was 18 years old he enlisted (Aug. 8, 1862) in Co. B., 118th Ohio Vol. Inf., and remained in the service until the termination of the war. He was discharged at Salisbury, N.C., and paid off at Cleveland, Ohio, June 24, 1865. He was in precarious health when his regiment went to the front, and was assigned to guard duty until the date of the battle of Atlanta, where he was first under fire. His corps was afterwards dispatched to intercept the march of the rebel Gen. Hood and he was in the battle of Smithville, on the Tennessee river. Hood's forces and the Union army under Thomas kept up an incessant skirmishing, and seven days' fighting took place near Columbia, Tenn. Mr. Canaan was in the terrible fights at Franklin and at Nashville, and was then transferred to North Carolina. His first battle was at Fort Anderson, and his last at a point 10 miles below Wilmington. He returned to Ohio and in October, 1866, settled in Grant Tp. He became a landholder in 1873, buying 40 acres of choice land, which he has improved to the best advantage, and has a good frame house with all necessary buildings.
Mr. Canaan was married Sept. 9, 1875, to Maria, daughter of James and Beulah Stewart, of Lakeview, Montcalm Co., Mich. She was born in Clyde, Ohio, Dec. 8, 1847. Her father died Jan. 19, 1878, and her mother is still living, in Michigan. The three living children of Mr. and Mrs. Canaan were born as follows: Stewart E., June 25, 1876; Herbert L., Sept. 4, 1878; Ernest J., May 16, 1883; Claude C., born Dec. 2, 1880, died July 6, 1881.
Politically Mr. Canaan is a Republican, and has been actively interested in local affairs. He has served his township as Supervisor, five years, Township Clerk, six years, School Director, two years, Assessor, three years, and was Deputy Sheriff under J. T. Escott, four years. He has been delegate various times to the District and County Conventions. Himself and wife are members of the United Brethren Church.