People of Allen County, Indiana

O Surnames

Oakley, Annie

June 14, 1908 article Annie Oakley's Shooting appeared in The Journal Gazette newspaperposted August 15, 2015 onthe original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

Oberholtzer, Michael

An actor, he graduated from Bishop Luers High School in 2001, Luers grad starring opposite Vaughn by Keiara Carr published November 21, 2013 in The Journal Gazette newspaper.

Olds, Henry G

1839-1902 Founder Olds Wagon Works photos and discussion May24, 2017 on the original Great Memories and History of Fort Wayne, Indiana page on Facebook.

Olds, Noble

Born in 1818 in Bedford Springs, Pennsylvania, and settled in Fort Wayne in 1861. A wagon maker, railroad car manufacturer, and active in city politics, he lived at 407 West Berry Street built in 1870 and is one of Fort Wayne’s finest examples of Italianate architecture. See Noble Olds and Theodore Thieme Homes by Tom Castaldi published November 6, 2014 on the History Center Notes & Queries blog.

Oliphant, Rick

Born May 27, 1948 in Waterloo, Iowa, 65, died March 17, 2014 in Fort Wayne. He was in business with local Pizza Hut founder, the late Dick Freeland, from the company’s start in Fort Wayne and managed the first Pizza Hut restaurant in Fort Wayne, beginning in 1972. Sons Chase and Blake of Fort Wayne, brother Robert Oliphant of Waterloo, Iowa, parents Don and Ruth Oliphant. See his D.O. McComb & Sons obituary. Read more in Pizza Hut exec Oliphant dies at 65 by News-Sentinel staff reports published March 19, 2014 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.

Oliver, Fred and Lois

Fred & Lois Oliver were a father and daughter team who "would always stop the show when they were with the old WOWO Hoosier Hop radio show that aired out of Fort Wayne, Indiana." Fred Oliver was also the leader of a band called the Prairie Pioneers. Copied from a circa 1940 photo posted December 15, 2018 by Indiana Album on Facebook. The same photo is called Promotional photo of Fred & Lois Oliver, Indiana, ca. 1940 on their web site. You can read a little bit more with a couple more photos on a page on Red Thompson on Hillbilly Another article Prairie Pioneers sign comes home to roost with its family narrated by Marc Bourne of Divernon, Illinois by Cindy Ladage published May 20, 2015 on Marc was  the son of Lois Oliver and her second husband Leo Bourne. See her December 7, 2011 obituary.

Olson, Eric

WPTA 21 Alive Your Country with Eric Olsen piece on Midwest Regional Digitization Center in the Allen County Public Library. August 2009 by Eric Olsen, Publication date 2009-08, on
This is a 21 Alive WPTA ABC Indiana News Center Your Country piece by Eric Olsen on The Internet Archive Midwest Regional Digitization Center located in the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne Indiana , airing in August of 2009. Featuring the work on Genealogy Center material and The Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection. Eric Olsen, Jeff Sharpe, Jane Gastineau.

August 19, 2020 post by 21Alive on Facebook:


This Friday, Eric Olson concludes three decades of storytelling on ABC21. Eric's 21Country reports are a special part of what we do, and while we wish him the best in retirement, his contributions will be greatly missed. Join us at 5 p.m. on Friday for Eric's farewell message and be sure to wish him the best as he begins a new chapter.

Watch his previous stories here: Eric Olson 21COUNTRY REPORTER

21Country ABC21 WPTA on YouTube  has some of the same videos

Former news personality on After three decades of sharing stories from across the ABC21 viewing area, Eric Olson signed off Friday afternoon and will begin a new journey -- into retirement. But his tales will be told for years to come. The Allen County Public Libraryhas begun a process that will archive hundreds of Olson's signature "21Country" reports as part of its digital collection titled: WPTA 21 Country Stories in the Allen County Public Library Digital Collections at the Allen County Public Library. Copied from Eric Olson retires; ACPL launches 21Country archive published August 21, 2020 on 21AliveNews.comnow on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.

The Eric Olson and his 21Country collection without functioning video are also on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine. About this collection states: Eric Olson is WPTA21's longest-serving reporter. He's been a journalist for 40 years, 30 of them working in Fort Wayne. Eric covered local news for many years but for the last two decades has developed the 21Country franchise into a viewer favorite, producing nearly 3000 feature stories on interesting people, places and history. Eric was born and raised in New York but came to Indiana at age 16, graduating from Central Noble High School in Albion and earning his journalism degree at the University of Oregon. He and his wife Cathy have four children and four grandchildren.

His Facebook page:

Many of the 21 County videos were saved when they were called Indiana NewsCenter. The Internet Archive Wayback Machine has more than 10,000 Indiana NewsCenter pages saved before they changed their name and website to Some in 2018 were saved as WPTA21. .

21Country to live on in ACPL archives August 21, 2020 ABC21 WPTA on YouTube
The Allen County Public Library will be a permanent home for the work of Eric Olson, who retired after a 40-year career in broadcasting.


Lloy Ball, volleyball, won a gold medal in 2008 in Beijing, Steve Bigelow, swimming, finished 10th in the 200-meter backstroke at the 1988 Seoul Olympics at age 17, Don Lash, track, finished eighth in the 10,000 meters and 14th in the 5,000 meters at Berlin in 1936, Mike Marchesano, baseball, a 1994 Elmhurst graduate, Marchesano pitched for Italy in Athens with little luck during the 2004 games, DeDee Nathan, track, finish ninth in Sydney during the 2000 games, Matt Vogel, swimming won the 100-meter butterfly gold medal and then was part of the gold medal-winning 400-meter medley relay in the 1976 Montreal games, Sharon Wichman, swimming, won the gold medal in the 200-meter breaststroke and set an Olympic record with a time of 2:44.4 in the 1968 Mexico City games, Verle Wright Jr., shooting, in 1956 he made the Olympic team for the Melbourne games but struggled shooting outdoors and finished well out of medal contention, Amy Yoder Begley, track, placed 26th in the 2008 Beijing Olympics in the 10,000-meter run, Dan Zehr, swimming, finished fourth to three Japanese swimmers in the 1932 Los Angeles games in the 100-meter backstroke. Read more in Who are Fort Wayne’s Favorite… Olympians? by Blake Sebring published June 18, 2018 in The News-Sentinel newspaper.

Oppenheimer, Emma Eppstein

Mrs. Emma Oppenheimer obituary Fort Wayne News
Mrs. Emma Oppenheimer
obituary Fort Wayne News

One of the oldest and most prominent Jewish Citizens of Fort Wayne. Born in Hohenzollern, Hechsaingen, Prussia on March 23, 1930. Married August 1, 1847 to Abraham Oppenheimer. Charter member of the Achduth Veshalon congregation and one of the founders of the Ladies Hebrew Benevloent Society. Burial in Lindenwood Cemetery. CLIPPED FROM The Fort Wayne News, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 08 Apr 1903, Wednesday page 4, micjbrow2606, CLIPPED BY micjbrow2606, January 26, 2023. See our Jewish People section.

Orff, John

John Orff, the subject of this sketch, was born in Bavaria, Germany, on the 26th day of January, 1821. where he received the benefit of a common-school education. In 1840, he emigrated to America, landing at Baltimore in June of that year, and at once started for the great West. At Defiance, Ohio, he procured work on the extension of the Wabash & Erie Canal to Toledo, but in 1841, left that for the occupation of clerk in a country store at Defiance, in which position he continued until 1843. In June of that year, he came to the town of Fort Wayne, where he accepted a position with L. S. Chittenden, Esq., with whom he formed a partnership a few years later, and continued in business with him until his death, after which he continued the business with the widow until she sold her interest in 1855. He then purchased a third interest in the property then known as the Empire Mills, but the two partners soon after this died, and he purchased their interests and became the sole owner of the mills, which are situated on the St. Mary’s, near the Aqueduct, and are now known as Orff’s Mills. He has been the proprietor of these well known mills ever since, and is well known as an active promoter of the milling interests of the country, as a member of the National Millers’ Association, and as a friend to the introduction of all the new improvements which can benefit the trade and improve the grades of flour. As a citizen, he is well known and highly respected, and his fine suburban residence, near Lindenwood, is the scene of many a social gathering of his friends, whom he delights to entertain with a kind and generous hospitality. Mr. Orff was married, November 17, 1874, to Miss Hanna Soxsovskey, a native of Prussia, who had emigrated to America about two years previous to their marriage. Their union has been blessed by nine children, eight of whom — four girls and four boys—are still living. Copied from page 135 of the book History of Allen County, Indiana, Publication date 1880, Publisher Kingman Brothers on

Osborn, Dan

October 18, 2023 post by the Allen County Sheriff's Department on Facebook:

Sergeant Dan Osborn C348

25 years. 25 very long, empty years. That’s how long Sergeant Dan Osborn’s family has had to live with no answers, no accountability. But this week, because of the diligent, tired-less work of the Fort Wayne Police Department detectives, this cold case could be receiving the accountability and closure that is beyond overdue.

If you are unfamiliar with this senseless homicide, you can find the story on any of the local news outlets. We would prefer to remember this larger-than-life, darn good human, for his contagious smile and personality…a man dedicated to his community. He was the type of man who made the world a little bit better just by being present. Sergeant Osborn was taken from his wife and daughters at the young age of 47 by a senseless act. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends, and co-workers of Sergeant Osborn. We are praying for accountability and closure for the family.

We cannot express our gratitude and appreciation to all the Fort Wayne Police Department detectives involved with bringing the suspect to court. Now it’s up to due process.

#ACPD #sheriff #community #lawenforcement #bluelinefamily #confinementofficers #sheriffoffice #communitymatters

July 31, 2022 post by The Journal Gazette on Facebook:

In 1998, Allen County Confinement Officer Dan Osborn was killed in a robbery at a Subway store he co-owned. A trial in 2000 ended in mistrial after only a few days. Read more: Allen County Confinement Officer's 1998 murder sees no conviction after 3 men confessFrom the Beyond the Evidence series, Dan Osborn was killed in a robbery at a Subway store he co-owned.

#fortwayne #indiana #truecrime #coldcase

October 17, 2023 post by WANE 15  on Facebook:

A convicted killer in a different homicide appeared in court today on charges of felony murder, robbery and criminal confinement.

FWPD: Arrest made in 1998 cold case killing of Allen County confinement officer

Osborne Murders

Possibly the most spectacular of the crimes were the September 1983 bludgeoning deaths of News-Sentinel editorial page editor Dan Osborne, his wife, Jane, and their 11-year-old son, Ben, at their home on South Harrison Street. The couple's 2-year-old daughter, Caroline, escaped injury, but wandered about the house for two days before the murders were discovered. Copied from Grisly crimes sent chills through city by Mike Dooley published in 1980-1989: HOT POLITICS, COLD CRIMES of The News-Sentinel newspaper. A young man charged with killing onetime Tulsa newspaperman Daniel Osborne and his wife and son hanged himself in his cell today, leaving a note saying "I didn't kill nobody." Calvin D. Perry III, 18, of Fort Wayne was found hanging from bars on his window with a long piece of mattress-cove cloth around his neck and feet, Allen County Sheriff Dan Figel said. Copied from Triple-slaying suspect kills self published January 17, 1984 in The Oklahoman.

Ott Family Farm

Ott family farm recognized with Hoosier Homestead Award published September 8, 2015 in Churubusco News now on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.

By Vivian Sade

Jerry and Pamela Ott, center, holding the certificate, were the recipients of a Hoosier Homestead Centennial Award for owning a farm that has been in the same family for more than 100 years. From left are Ted McKinney, director of the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, Sen. Dennis Kruse, R-Auburn, Miranda and Ryan Ott, Pam and Jerry Ott, Eric (holding sign) and Lauren Ott and Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann.

CHURUBUSCO — The Ott family was one of three Allen County farmers — and 64 across the state — presented with a Hoosier Homestead Award in recognition of their family’s longtime commitment to agriculture.

Jerry and Pamela Ott received the Centennial Award for their family farm in Churubusco, on Hathaway Road in Allen County. The awards are presented to farms owned by the same family for at least 100 consecutive years. The farms must consist of more than 20 acres or produce more than $1,000 of agricultural products per year.

Jerry Ott’s grandparents, Thomas and Laura Ott, established the farm in 1914. It was handed down to their son, Glen Ott, and his wife, Phyllis, who owned and operated the farm from 1957 to 1980, when they passed the farm on to their son, Jerry, and his wife, Pamela.

Today his sons and daughters-in-law, Eric and Lauren Ott and Ryan and Miranda Ott, represent the fourth generation of Otts in the business of farming. Ryan and Miranda’s two-year-old son — Jerry and Pamela’s only grandchild — Bentley, will be the fifth generation if a love of the farm life is any indication.

The Hoosier Homestead Award program was established in 1976 by the Indiana State Department of Agriculture to honor the state’s rich agricultural heritage. Throughout the history of the award, more than 5,000 farms have received the honor.

The awards were presented on Aug. 15 at the Indiana Farm Bureau building during the Indiana State Fair. Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann and Ted McKinney, director of the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, presented the awards to 67 families including, in Allen County, a Centennial Award to the Otts and Sesquicentennial Awards to the Mooney-Grodrian farm, established in 1865, and the Carroll and Shirley Hand farm, established in 1853. In Whitley County, the Hilligoss farm, established in 1915, also won a Centennial Award. [Hoosier Families Honored at the Indiana State Fair Three families received award for 200+ consecutive years of ownership].

The Otts were thrilled and had been optimistic that they might receive the Hoosier Homestead Centennial Award this year.

“I was aware of the farm’s age and for the last ten years have kept records,” Jerry Ott said. “So, luckily, we were able to prove ownership.”

Ellspermann, who is also the Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, said the Otts and other award winners are part of Indiana’s prolific farming heritage.

“For nearly 40 years, the Hoosier Homestead program has provided a wonderful opportunity for our state to recognize the rich heritage of farming in Indiana and how Hoosier family farms have been passed down from generation to generation,” Ellspermann said in a statement.

“It’s even more fitting that we are celebrating the Year of the Farmer at the Indiana State Fair as a way to honor and thank Hoosier farmers for being an integral part of our states legacy and future,” she said.

McKinney relayed similar sentiments about the farming families.

“What better way to honor our Hoosier Homestead families than during the Year of the Farmer,” McKinney said. “We salute their determination, dedication, and innovation which have allowed them to succeed for more than 100 years.”

Ozaki, "Henry" Yoshinobu

"Henry" Yoshinobu Ozaki, born January 31, 1886, Shimane-ken, Japan, immigrated to the United States by steamship to Seattle in 1907. He owned and operated photograph studios on Wayne Street and South Calhoun Street in Fort Wayne in the period 1913-1935. Though Ozaki applied for U.S. citizenship in Cass Co., Indiana, in 1912, the Allen Circuit Court denied his petition in April 1920 and recorded a one-word explanation: "Jap". Despite this rejection, Yoshinobu and second wife Suye Ozaki [Suye Okamoto married 1920; Ivy E. Whitcomb married March 25, 1915 filed for divorce 06 Jan 1920] demonstrated their fondness for their home here by naming their newborn son Wayne in 1923. A search of the 1930 census of Allen County revealed few East Asian residents. ACGSI found 18 people born in China (4 of those were white) and 5 people born in Japan (2 of those were Mr. & Mrs. Ozaki). Apparently they returned to Japan in 1935. The Federal Register of 19 Jan 1948 included a U.S. Federal Government order seizing two New York Life Insurance policies owned by Yoshinobu and Suye Ozaki of Japan. These assets were confiscated by authority of the Trading With the Enemy Act of 1917. We recognize Mr. Ozaki for his role in preserving images of our ancestors in Fort Wayne and surrounding areas. Information was mostly copied from a July 1, 2022 email sent to Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana members and additional Ozaki, Henry Yoshinobu information found on The Indiana Albumthat has two images labeled: Portrait of Eugene Boitet, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 1919 Description Portrait of Eugene Boitet (1898-1973), son of Francis Boitet (1866-1923) and Marie Eugenie "Jennie" (Lamont) Boitet (1868-1951). taken by Henry Yoshinobu Ozaki. Also found in DIRECTORY OF FORT WAYNE PHOTOGRAPHERS 1843-1930 by John D. Beatty at The Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He also appears as Ozaki, (Henry Yoshinobu) Ft. Wayne, Ind. [3745 Ross college of chiropractic. © Feb. 20, 1919; 2 c. Feb. 24, 1919; J 233034. on page 70 of Catalog of Copyright Entries. Part 4. Works of Art, Etc. New Series By Library of Congress. Copyright Office · 1919 on Google books and shown below:

Catalog of Copyright Entries, 1919 Works of Art, Photos by Library of Congress. Copyright Office. Publication date 1919 on

Back to top

Page updated: