You can learn quite a lot about a person—when he is willing to brag about himself.
The biographical sketches of the late 1800s were no exception when it came to boasting. Evidently John Jackson’s son, the quite accomplished attorney and military man, Lyman J. Jackson, had no hesitation in providing ample material to the compiler of the volume History of Fairfield and Perry Counties.
Despite knowing that someone had to provide all that information, I’ll set aside my personal bias on the matter and share some of his accomplishments—that is, if we are to believe everything in print.
For one thing, Lyman Jackson served as an attorney in both Fairfield and Perry counties. At the beginning of his biographical sketch in the History, he was serving with the firm Jackson & Conly in New Lexington, Ohio.
Prior to his training in law, Lyman was a farmer—most likely on his father’s property—until October, 1851. He first attended a Perry County school, Saint Joseph’s College, from that point until 1855. An interim period found him alternately back on the farm and teaching school—all the while, studying law and pursuing further college studies.
In 1857, Lyman graduated from Saint Joseph’s College and began practicing law in New Lexington. Not long afterward, he ran for the post of Prosecuting Attorney of the county, and was elected.
Following his service in the war, he was appointed as Prosecuting Attorney to fill a vacancy in nearby Muskingum county, after which he resumed his practice of law back in Perry County.
In preparation for the third Ohio Constitutional Convention, Lyman was elected a delegate from Perry County in April of 1873. By 1877, he was elected as state senator, and was re-elected to the same position in 1879.
Perhaps it is the custom of the time to choose certain details to include in a professional biography. Of course, there was the obligatory mention of a wife—“Miss Mary E. Taggart, daughter of Arthur Taggart, Esq., late of Morgan county”—in addition to the ample nod to Lyman’s own father’s history. What caught my eye, though, was the wording at the close of the entry:
In religion, Colonel Jackson is a Roman Catholic, and in politics has always acted with the Democratic party except during the Rebellion.