JAMES NELSON ROBERTS, who is well known in the community in which Carlisle is situated, having for many years been a dealer in hardware, lumber and grain at that point, and now retired from active business pursuits, is a native of the Old Dominion state, born in Frederick county, Virginia, October 28, 1849, son of Andrew and Sarah (Nelson) Roberts. The father was born in Ireland in 1816 and the mother m Frederick county, Virginia, in 1826. She died in Hancock county, Ohio, in 1859. Andrew Roberts came to this country alone, when about eighteen years of age, and lived in New York two years, then went to Washington, District of Columbia, in which city he resided two years, going from there to Frederick county, Virginia, where he was united in marriage. In 1851 he removed to Hancock county, Ohio, and in 1868 to Carlisle, Indiana, where he lived until his death in 1898. He was a farmer by occupation. He had been educated for a priest in Dublin, Ireland, and New York City, but finally abandoned the idea of priesthood. While living in Virginia, he had the sub-contract of constructing the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad grade. He possessed great energy and considerable skill. His mother's parents were both natives of Ireland, and died in Ohio, where they were farmers. Andrew and Sarah (Nelson) Roberts were the parents of seven children, as follows: Margaret, wife of Clark Hill, residing in Clinton, Illinois; the next child died in infancy; James Nelson; Mary Virginia, a widow, now residing at Columbus, Ohio; Jennie, wife of C. E. Henshaw, residing in Wisconsin; Ella, deceased; and Marion, a resident of Sullivan, Indiana. For his second wife, Andrew Roberts married the widow of Joseph Wolfe, who was reared in Carlisle, Indiana. Politically, Mr. Roberts was a stanch defender of Democratic principles. Both he and his wife were members of the Methodist Episcopal church, he having united with this church at Carlisle.

James N. Roberts, of this sketch, obtained a common school education in Ohio and began to work for himself when he reached his majority. He continued to do farm labor until 1879, when he went to Cherokee, Iowa, and there engaged in the grain and milling business with his brother-in-law, C. E. Henshaw. After two years he sold his interest and went back to Carlisle, Indiana, and embarked in the hardware business, with T. Frank Alumbaugh, operating under the firm name of Roberts & Alumbaugh. Their business comprised hardware, tinware, harnessmaking, lumber and grain. This continued until the fall of 1905, when the firm was dissolved, Mr. Roberts taking over the lumber and elevator business, which in the spring of 1906 he sold to James McConnell. Since that date Mr. Roberts has been looking after the interests of his farm. He is one of the owners of the old Roberts homestead, and is the treasurer of the Carlisle Building and Loan Association. He is also one of the directors of the People's State Bank of Carlisle, Indiana. Politically, Mr. Roberts is a supporter of the Democratic party.

He was married, February 7, 1888, to Carrie Long, who was born in Evansville, Indiana, and there educated. She is the daughter of Lewis and Mary Ann (Gantner) Long. Both of Mrs. Roberts' parents were natives of Germany, and were united in marriage in Vanderburg county, Indiana. Both are now deceased. They were well-to-do farmers. Mr. and Mrs. Roberts are the parents of three children: Raymond Andrew, born April 1, 1889, was graduated with the class of 1908 from the Carlisle high school, and is now a student of Notre Dame (commercial course), at South Bend, Indiana; Louis Long, born April 26, 1891, graduated with the class of 1908, and is now a student in Wabash College, at Crawfordsville, Indiana; and Charles Elliott, born March 4, 1894, is now in the sophomore class. Mrs. Roberts is a member of the Roman Catholic church, and attends St. Mary's church at Sullivan, Indiana, of which Rev. Father James Bolin is the pastor.