JAMES S. BOLINGER, the owner of one of the finest estates in Curry township, has been identified with the agricultural interests of Sullivan county throughout his entire business career, and is one of its most prominent farmers and stock raisers. He was born in Mason county, Kentucky, July 9, 1854, a son of William H. and Victoria (Close) Bolinger, and a grandson of William H., Sr., and Susan Bolinger. The senior Mr. Bolinger was the proprietor of one of the first glass factories of Maysville. Kentucky. Both he and his wife were born in Germany, coming to this country after their marriage, and after disposing of his glass factory he became the owner of a cigar factory, but disposing of this also, he moved to a farm in Mason county and lived there until his death,, both he and his wife spending the later years of their lives in the home of their son William.

William H. Bolinger, Jr., was born in Mason county, Kentucky, July 24, 1821, and died April 13, 1906. He remained with his parents until his marriage and then began farming in Mason county, operating the old family homestead, and after the death of his parents he bought the farm of one hundred and thirty acres. In March of 1865 he moved to Hamilton township, Sullivan county, Indiana, purchasing what was then known as the William McGrew farm of one hundred and seventy-two acres. In 1903 he left this place, and thereafter lived a retired life among his children until his death, dying on the 13th of April, 1906, on the farm on which his son James now resides. He was a member of both the Odd Fellows and Masonic orders, and was a Republican in his political affiliations. He helped to organize the Shelburn Baptist church and became one of its most active and helpful members, serving the congregation in the capacities of deacon and trustee until his good and useful life was ended in death. His wife was also a member of that church. She was born in France, in 1825, and when eight years of age came with her father, Charles Close, and his family to the United States, locating in Maysville, Kentucky, where he became the keeper of the toll gate. The daughter, Mrs. Bolinger, died on the 24th of October, 1889, after becoming the mother of eight children: Carrie, who was born March 20, 1845, married William O. White, and, after his death, Samuel Carruthers, and she died October 6, 1900; John H., born May 31, 1847, married Elizabeth Siner, and lives in Curry township; Charles B., born September 8, 1849, married, first, Barbara Sparks, and, after her death, Mary A. Dix, and his home is in Shelburn; William T., born March 14, 1852, married Arpy Curry and lives in Hamilton township; James S., the subject of this review; Annety, born September 30, 1856, married Grace All and lives in Terre Haute; Frederick J., born January 14, 1859, married Anna Osborn and lives in Curry township; and Edward S., born February 8, 1866, died August 3, 1883.

The early youth of James S. Bolinger was spent on the farm and in school, and after his marriage he lived on a rented farm in Curry township for one year, and then, in 1882, moved to his present homestead, which he rented during the first four years and then purchased. The homestead contains one hundred and sixty acres of rich and fertile land, well improved and cultivated, and he devotes much of his attention to the raising of stock, breeding principally the registered O. I. C. hogs.

The marriage of Mr. Bolinger occurred on the 3d of February, 1881, to Mary A. Chesnut, born in Curry township, October 16, 1858, a daughter of James E. and Lidia A. (Douglas) Chesnut, the father born in Kentucky, April 7, 1833, and the mother in Curry township, April 28, 1833, and both are now living on a farm in Wilson county, Kansas. James E. Chesnut is a son of James E., Sr., and Nancy (Burton) Chesnut, North Carolinians by birth, and they were farming people. The four children born to Mr. and Mrs. Bolinger are: William D., born November 30, 1881, married Clennie Jennings and lives in Farmersburg; James E., born December 12, 1886, married Emma Able and resides on his father's farm; Herman, born October 27, 1889, is attending school; and Hazel, born May 8, 1897, is also in school. The Republican party receives Mr. Bolinger's stanch support and co-operation, and he is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Lodge No. 420, at Shelburn, in which he has filled all the offices and served as a delegate to the Grand Lodge, and also belongs to the Encampment. Both Mr. and Mrs. Bolinger and one son are members of the Baptist church at Shelburn.