CLAUDE A. ELLIS, of the firm of Risinger & Ellis, patentee of Hygiene Cabinets, and secretary of the Carlisle Business Men's Association, was born November 17, 1868, in Haddon township, near Carlisle, Indiana, son of Thomas Orlando and Eliza (Sproatt) Ellis. The father was born in Carlisle, December 19, 1835, and is of English descent. The paternal grandfather, John W. Ellis, was born in Virginia, and married Elizabeth Veech, who was also a native of Virginia. They were married there and soon afterward came to Carlisle. Indiana. He farmed several years, after which he took up the carpenter's trade and painting. In his latter days he was an undertaker. He was the first to carry on such business at Carlisle, and many times preached the funeral sermons for the deceased whose funeral he was hired to conduct. He was an old-fashioned Democrat and served as trustee of his township many years. Both he and his estimable wife were members of the Christian church, in which he was very active. He was married three times, and was the father of eighteen children by the three marriage unions. Eleven of his children still survive. His father (Claude A.'s great-grandfather Ellis), named Louis, was a native of England, who on coming to America settled in Virginia.

Thomas Orlando Ellis was reared and educated at Carlisle, Indiana. He learned the brickmason's trade, with his uncle, in Mobile, Alabama. After remaining there about seven years, Mr. Ellis came back to Carlisle and purchased a farm which he worked, being also employed at his trade. He still lives on his farm, about three-fourths of a mile from Carlisle. He owns two farms of about four hundred acres. He is a supporter of the principles of pure Democracy, and is a member of Lodge No. 3, A. F. & A. M., at Carlisle. He married Eliza Sproatt, who was born within a quarter of a mile of where she now lives, on September 4, 1838. She was educated in the place of her nativity. Her parents were John and Eliza (Minich) Sproatt; her father was born on Shaker Prairie, Knox county, Indiana, March 1, 1810, and died November 17, 1884. He was always engaged in farming in Sullivan county. Eliza (Minich) Sproatt was born in Haddon township, July 26, 1819, and near this place she spent her entire life, dying February 8, 1906. Her father was of English descent, and her mother of Dutch ancestry. Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Orlando Ellis were the parents of two children: Claude A., born November 17, 1868, and Mirtie, born May 23, 1876. Mirtie was educated in Carlisle and married William A. Deiss. They now reside on a farm near Carlisle, Indiana.

Claude A. Ellis, was reared on his father's farm and attended the district schools about Carlisle. When sixteen years old, he went to Florida and there began firing on the J., T. & K. W. Railroad. He continued there several months and then returned to Carlisle and began running a stationary engine, which work he followed for about five years. His next business was conducting a livery barn, with Rush M. Cammeron, under the firm name of Cammeron & Ellis, which partnership existed one year. Mr. Ellis then formed a partnership with T. S. Risinger, under the firm name of Risinger & Ellis, which firm conducted a hardware, furniture and undertaking business. This is the only firm doing such business in Carlisle. Politically, Mr. Ellis is a Democrat and for some time has served as president of the Carlisle school board. He is affiliated with the Masonic order, being a member of Carlisle Lodge No. 3, F. & A. M., Chapter No. 81, Council and Commandery No. 54, at Sullivan. He is also a member of Odd Fellows Lodge No. 50, belongs to the Encampment No. 139 of Carlisle, and has been through the chairs and to the grand lodge. He is also an honored member of Ben Hur Court, and Modern Woodmen of America, Camp No. 3332, both of Carlisle. The firm to which Mr. Ellis belongs, has placed on the market their celebrated cabinet case, above mentioned and during the last year has gained a wide reputation for this excellent invention, the patents of which they own.

Mr. Ellis was united in marriage August 6, 1890, to Lillian A. Wiggs, born in Carlisle, Indiana, on the lot where now stands the People's Bank of Carlisle. She died September 22, 1904, leaving three children, as follows: Eloise, now attending the high school and will graduate with the class of 1909; Orlando, attending high school, will probably graduate in 1910; Stanley, in school. The mother of these children, was a devout Christian and a member of the Christian church.