William N. Nickell is a native of Monroe county, West Virginia, was born December 27, 1838, and is the son of John A. and Mary J. Nickell, both natives of West Virginia. The subject of this sketch received his early education in the common schools of Virginia, and completed it by an additional course of two and a half years at the Washington College, now Washington and Lee University, of Rockbridge county, Virginia. In May 1861, he enlisted in Company D, Twenty-seventh Regiment Virginia Confederate Infantry as a private, was soon promoted to sergeant, and sergeant-major of his regiment. He served two and a half years, was then engaged in carrying the Confederate mail until the close of the war. He was at the battles of Manassas, Winchester, Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Culpepper Court House, and others. At the close of the war he began farming, and in 1866 moved to Miami county, Kansas, thence in 1869 to this county and settled where he now lives. In 1872 he went under the care of the Chillicothe Presbytery, as a candidate for the ministry in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and was licensed to preach in April, 1873, was ordained in 1875, and the same fall went back to Virginia; was there engaged in the ministry for three years, and then returned to this county. Since that time he has been engaged in the ministry, conjunction with farming.
Mr. Nickell was united in marriage, July 26, 1864, to Miss Sue P. Wicklin, who was born January 4, 1844, in Monroe county, Virginia. By this union they have five children; namely, Ximenia, born November 5, 1865; Belle J., born July 2, 1869: Cora A., born August 23, 1871; John P., born August 4, 1874; and Juniata P., born February I8, 1881.