Fourth son of the late Jeremiah J. Corbaley, was born at the old homestead on Eagle creek, in Marion county, on the 17th of February, 1834.
After the death of his father he remained with his mother, working on the farm during the summer, and in the winter attending such schools as were kept in the common log school houses of that day, receiving but a limited education.
At the age of seventeen he obtained the consent of his mother to go into the office of his brother Richard, who was then clerk of Marshall county.
He started on foot, and made the trip to Plymouth in that way in three and a half days, over the Michigan road, known to be one of the worst public thoroughfares in the State. Starting with three dollars in his pocket, which was of his own accumulation, he had thirty-five cents left when he reached his destination.
He resided ten years in Marshall county, eight of which he did duty in the offices of the clerk and recorder of the county. He was proficient with the pen, and has left a monument to his efficiency and qualifications as a public officer. He returned to this county in 1861, and has been a permanent resident of the city since 1862.
Mr. Corbaley served three years as bookkeeper in the large furniture establishment of Spiegel, Thoms & Co. He then engaged in the family grocery business on West Washington street, where he is yet and has been for the past eight years, doing a very safe business.
His motto has been to "make his word good in all contracts," even should he incur loss thereby. I understand his paper is as good among the wholesale men on Meridian street as any dealer in the city.
He was first married in Plymouth to Miss Amanda Dawson of that place; she lived ten years after marriage; he had two daughters by that marriage, both of whom died. He was again married on the 4th of April, 1867, to Miss Eliza A. Cassel, eldest daughter of William Cassel, Esq., one of the prominent farmers of this county. By this marriage he also has two children, Lucella and George.
With Mr. Corbaley the writer has been on intimate terms for years, and can write of him understandingly, and feel justified in saying that no man in the city stands fairer with his acquaintances than Mr. Corbaley.
Nowland, John H.B., "Sketches of Prominent Citizens of 1876, with a Few of the Pioneers of the City and County Who Have Passed Away," a sequel to "Early Reminiscences of Indianapolis." 1820-76, 1877, pp. 96-97
Transcribed by Sherri Morem Bergman