John Hays JOHN T. AND WILL. H. Hays.-The law firm of John T. & Will. H. Hays, of Sullivan, is composed of John T. Hays, who has been a leading attorney and citizen of this locality for some thirty years, and Will. H. Hays his son, who has been associated with his father since 1900. The firm are attorneys for the various railroads, coal companies, and other important corporations which are so much concerned in the development of Sullivan county, among them being the Evansville & Terre Haute Railroad Company; the Indianapolis Southern Railroad Company; the Terre Haute, Indianapolis & Eastern Traction Company; the Dering Coal Company; Consolidated Indiana Coal Company; Jackson Hill Coal & Coke Company; Carlisle Coal & Clay Company; Bellevue Coal Company; Sullivan County Coal Company; the West Jackson Hill Coal Mining & Transport Company; the London Liability and Guaranty Company; the Illinois Coal Operators' Mutual Employers' Liability Insurance Company; the Central Union Telephone Company; the Sullivan Lighting Company, and the People's State Bank of Sullivan.


John Tennyson Hays, senior member of the firm, is a native of Beaver county, Pennsylvania, born on the 11th day of November, 1845. His parents and grandparents were all native-born Americans. He lived 011 a farm with his father until he was sixteen years of age, attending the short winter terms of the common schools in his native county during that time. In 1864 he was graduated from the Iron City Commercial College at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, then attended the high school at Lisbon, Ohio, and in 1866 entered Mount Union College. He was graduated from that institution in June, 1869, receiving the highest honors of his class in natural science and mathematics. For a year after his graduation he was principal of schools at Calcutta, Ohio, and in August, 1870, moved to Farmersburg, Sullivan county. He taught in the Ascension Seminary there, and later in Sullivan, until 1874, with the exception of one year, during which he was principal of the schools at Oaktown, Knox county.


In 1874 Mr. Hays became a law student in the office of Sewell Counsel, but at his admission to the bar on March 1, 1875, purchased the interest of Nathaniel G. Buff, in the firm of Buff & Buff, of Sullivan, continuing in partnership with Judge Buff until 1878. In the fall of that year the partnership was dissolved, as he had been elected prosecuting attorney of the Fourteenth Judicial Circuit for a term of two years. In 1879 he associated himself in practice with his brother, H. J. Hays, and that partnership was unbroken until 1892. From that year until 1900, when he received his son, Will. H. Hays into partnership, he conducted an independent practice. Although his law business is of immense proportions, his early life on the farm still draws him to the soil, and he now takes great delight in managing his farm, as well as a tract of several thousand acres owned by the West Jackson Hill Coal Mining & Transport Company, of which he is president. He is also a director in the People's State Bank.


Mr. Hays has always been a Republican, but never was a candidate for any office except that of prosecuting attorney. He has always been a member of the Presbyterian church, of which he is an elder and in which he has taught for years in connection with the Sunday school. Socially, he is a member of the Columbia Club, Indianapolis, and has a close connection with the Masonic fraternity and the Knights of Pythias. He is a member of Sullivan Commandery, No. 54, Knights Templar; Jerusalem Chapter, No. 81, Royal Arch Masons; Sullivan Lodge, No. 263, Free and Accepted Masons; Sullivan Council, No. 73, R. & S. M.; and Sullivan Chapter, No. 188, Order of the Eastern Star. He served eight years as high priest of this chapter and three years as master of his lodge. He is identified with the Knights of Pythias as a member of Sullivan Lodge, No. 85. He has been twice married; first in 1869, from which union his two daughters, Martha A. Hays and Bertha Hays Drake, were born. In December, 1876, he was married to Mary Cain, of Sullivan, Indiana, and of their marriage two children have been born, William Harrison Hays and Hinkle Cain Hays. The career of John T. Hays, most noteworthy and honorable, needs no commendation.


Will Hays Will. H. Hays, junior member of the firm was born in Sullivan November 5, 1879. He was graduated from the Sullivan high school in the class of 1896, entering Wabash College in the fall of that year. After pursuing a four years' course in that institution he obtained his degree of B. A. in 1900. He had been interested in the law ever since he was a young boy, spending much of his spare time in his father's office. At his graduation he naturally formed a partnership with him, which has since continued. In 1904 Mr. Hays received the degree of M. A. from his alma mater, the subject of the special thesis upon which it was conferred being "The Negro Problem." In college he won the highest oratorical honors and ever since his graduation has given much time to public speaking.


A Republican in politics, in 1902 he was nominated for prosecuting attorney, and was defeated by fifty-three votes. From 1904 to 1908 (two terms) he served as chairman of the Republican county committee; was a member of the State Advisory committee from the Second district from 1906 to 1908, and during the campaigns of 1906 and 1908 was chairman of the Speakers' Bureau of the Republican state committee. In his religious faith Mr. Hays is a Presbyterian, and teaches a class of boys in its Sunday school. In Masonry he is a member of Sullivan Lodge, No. 263, F. & A. M.; Jerusalem Chapter, No. 81, R. A. M; Sullivan Council, No. 73, R. & S. M.: Sullivan Commandery, No. 54, Knights Templar, and Sullivan Chapter, No. 188, Order of the Eastern Star. He is also a member of the Indianapolis Consistory, Scottish Rite Masons, and of Murat Temple, Order of the Mystic Shrine. He is a member of both the Columbia and Marion Clubs, of Indianapolis, and is a life member of Sullivan Lodge, No. 911, B. P. O. E. He is a member of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity and for six years has been state president of the order. Mr. Hays was married on November 18, 1902, to Miss Helen Louise Thomas, of Crawfordsville, Indiana, a daughter of Judge Albert Duy Thomas, who resides in that place.



[an error occurred while processing this directive]