Bio: Thomas H. Nichols (1849)
Contact: Janet Schwarze
Surnames: NICHOLS FISK
----Source: 1891 Biographical History of Clark and Jackson Counties Wisconsin
Thomas H. Nichols, was born in Surry County Court-House, Virginia, August 5, 1849, of quadroon parentage. When he was a mere lad his parents removed to Prince George County, and thence to Petersburg, Dinwiddie County. He was a resident of that city and vicinity during the siege by the Union Army under General Grant. At the close of the war of the Rebellion in 1865, he came North with Captain G. A. Fisk, of Company C, Thirty-Sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. He lived with Captain Fisk at his home in Sparta, Wisconsin, and in Cataract, Wisconsin, until the spring of 1866, obtaining a few months schooling in the latter place. He then determined to take up the responsibilities of life for himself, and found his way to Black River Falls, where he worked at whatever presented itself. In the autumn of the same year he returned to Sparta, and continued his studies the following winter. At the end of the school year he went back to Black River Falls and learned the barber's trade but realizing full well the advantages of a good education, and having a natural aptitude for all literary studies, he persevered in the pursuits of learning. He paid his own way at school in Sparta for two years after he had learned his trade, and then went to Neillsville, where he established himself in business. At the end of four years he removed to Winona, Minnesota, but after a short stay there he returned to Black River falls, where he owns property and is located permanently. He is entitled to much credit for the persistency he has shown in acquiring his education. When he came North, at the age of fifteen years, he was unable to read but being possessed of much natural intelligence, he overcame many difficulties that would discouraged one of smaller ambitions. He now owns a fine library of well-selected books, embracing a variety of subjects.
Politically he affiliates with the Prohibition party, being a strong opponent of the use and sale of all intoxicating drinks. He believes that so-called religion is nothing more than superstition with the corners knocked off and polished. He is agnostic in his belief is public-spirited, generous, social, kind, self-reliant, courteous, and at all times and under all circumstances independent in the extreme. He is well informed on the leading topics of the day, and ranks among the leading and intelligent citizens of the place.
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