CLAYTON D. WEST, of Leechburg, Armstrong county, is a native of Westmoreland county, Pa., born June 11, 1874, son of Samuel M. West. Adam West, his grandfather, was a shoemaker, and followed that trade throughout his life, dying in Pennsylvania in 1843. His wife, Sarah, survived him for many years, dying in 1876. They had eight children, of whom Samuel M. West is now the only survivor.

Samuel M. West was born Jan. 23, 1841, in Westmoreland county. After his father´┐Żs death he was reared by an aunt, with whom he lived until he entered the Union service during the Civil war. He had a public school education. In the fall of 1861 he enlisted in Company C, 4th Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry, joined his regiment at Harrisburg, Pa., and from there was sent with his command to Washington, D. C., where it was placed under the leadership of General McClellan. Mr. West became first sergeant. He saw active service in sixty-seven engagements, taking part in the battles of Malvern Hill; White Oak Swamp; Gettysburg, where the activity of his regiment prevented General Stuart making his proposed connection with the other Confederate forces; Antietam, where the 4th Pennsylvania was part of the advance guard (in that engagement the brave Colonel Childs was killed; while the battle was in progress Mr. West was one of those detailed to give care to the wounded and dying); and the Wilderness. Mr. West reenlisted, in the same company and regiment in which he served out his first term, and after the surrender of Lee his regiment went into camp at Lynchburg, Va., where it lay until honorably discharged, July 13, 1865. Returning home, Mr. West was married, Oct. 26, 1865, in Westmoreland county, to Margaret Townsend. Four sons and one daughter were born to them: Carrie Isabel, Robert T., Harry H., Clayton D. and Elmore Murray.

After his marriage Mr. West followed farming in Pennsylvania and Virginia, until he moved to his present home, in Apollo, where he is now living retired. During the early part of his residence there he engaged in the teaming and draying business, continuing same until 1907, when failing health induced him to relinquish active life. He is a member of Whitworth Post, No. 89, G. A. R. In politics he is a Republican, and for nine years served as constable at Apollo.

Clayton D. West attended public school during his youth, in the locality of the home farm, and was reared to agricultural pursuits, being thus employed until seventeen years of age. He then entered the mill at Apollo, as an opener, and by application and industry became a skilled worker, advancing until he became a sheet roller. In 1903 he moved to the borough of Leechburg, where he has since been in the employ of the American Sheet & Tin Plate Company as sheet roller, proving himself a competent and thoroughly reliable worker. He owns a fine home on Main street in the borough, and is considered one of the substantial citizens of that place. He is a member of the local lodge of Elks and of the Knights of Pythias. In politics he is identified with the Republican party.

Mr. West married Elsie B. Heck, and they have two children, Audrey and Clarence D.

Source: Pages 843-844, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J. H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed April 2002 by James R. Hindman for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (

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