"The father Jacob, a native of Germany, came to this country when four years old and settled in Kentucky, where they subsisted by digging the ginseng and selling it, and hunting deer and dressing their skins. He was well acquainted with Daniel Boone. He moved to Illinois, and was there during the Black Hawk war , in which he took part. He was the first man to settle in Burlington, Iowa, which place he found while swimming the Mississippi River after Indians for whom he had a deadly hatred. When sixty-two years of age he moved to Missouri, to a town called Jamestown, five miles from St. Joseph [Buchanan County]. He became so fond of frontier life that he followed it until his death, which occurred in Illinois, at the age of seventy-two years. He shot his last deer in Illinois, while on horseback, shortly before his death. His son Alfred has the old rifle with which he killed the deer. Seven of the children of Jacob Coffman are living, the youngest being sixty six years of age."
SOURCE: History of Sacramento County, 1890, by Winfield J. Davis, CA State Library #qc979.453 D2; mfm#C115 #13 Book 2382; p. 479 From the sketch of Alfred Coffman, son of Jacob Coffman 1780-1855
"...The grandparents of Mrs. [Aaron] DeWitt, Jacob and Ezra (Fowler) Coffman, were born in Kentucky, and he was a son of Jacob Coffman, a native of Germany. When Jacob Coffman, Mrs. DeWitt's grandfather was three years old the family started for Illinois, and when they reached the Illinois side of the Ohio River they were attacked by the Indians and old grandfather was killed. His wife, two sons and a negro servant escaped, fled to the woods and kept on traveling until the crow of a rooster told them they had reached a white settlement. They finally made their way to McDonough County, where they entered land from the government, but none of the survivors ever forgot their terrible experience with the hostile Red Men."
SOURCE: Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois & History of Hancock Co. Scofield Vol. 11; Chicago, Illinois : Munsell Pub. Co., 1921; Salt Lake City, Utah : Digitized by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 2009; page 1186 in the sketch of Aaron DeWitt.
"William F. Coffman was born in Kentucky, July 30, 1815. When he was three years of age the family removed to Jefferson county, Illinois where they remained twelve years, when in 1830 they came to this vicinity where he has since resided." SOURCE: LaHarper, LaHarpe, Illinois, 15 Sep 1905
JACOB COFFMAN, FIRST ANDERSON COUNTY PIONEER
"Jacob Coffman was one of the first, it not the first, to build his cabin or fort, in what is now Anderson county. His fort, or strong cabin (It was not one of the large stations or forts), stood on the corner lot made by what is now Woodford and Main streets, the lot now (1928) occupied by the Presbyterian church. This cabin was put up between February 3, 1780 and June 23, 1780, the time he made his 1,000 acre entry, the second entry using the term, "adjoining his settlement and around the same." Here Coffman lived from 1780 until his death by Indians in 1792.
"As to where he came from, the records of Anderson and Franklin counties are silent. Quite a number of Dutch settlers came to Kentucky at a very early date, and he may have been one of these..."
"Jacob Coffman, Sr., was killed in 1792, and there were several versions of his death, how it occurred and where. Mr. W. S. McBrayer gave the writer the version that many old people thought the Indians did not kill him, but that Samuel Arbuckle killed him in order to get his land, and that he was killed near the brick residence of John C. McBrayer on the Clifton pike. Samuel Arbuckle did finally get the title to the lots of Jacob, Jr., and Hannah, and the greater part of Nellie's, but the records show that he got it many years after the death of Jacob, Sr., and that he paid prices for it that compared with prices paid for other similar land in the community."
"The most reasonable version of Jacob, Sr.'s, death heard by the writer, and it was heard many times years ago, was that he and his wife were walking not far from Coffman's Station one Sunday afternoon when they discovered two Indians not far away and apparently approaching them. Coffman sent his wife to the station to bar the doors, as he thought the Indians did not intend harm and he could get rid of them. He walked to where they were and some talk occurred, but suddenly the Indians clubbed him to death and scalped him. The alarm was given and a number of people got together under the command of Major Herman Bowmar living in Woodford county, and a deputy sheriff living in that county, came and tried to track the Indians. but could find no trace of them. (Collin's History, Vol. 2.)"
"The summer and fall of 1792 saw the last incursion into any part of central Kentucky, and the killing of Coffman here, and of a Mr. Todd in South Frankfort, were the last killings by Indians."
SOURCE: Ancestry.com. A history of Anderson County [database on-line]. Provo, UT: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005. Original data: McKee, Lewis W.. A history of Anderson County. Baltimore: Regional Pub. Co., 1975. The 1975 version was a reprint of A History of Anderson County Begun in 1884 By Major Lewis W. McKee, and concluded in 1936 By Mrs. Lydia K. Bond; Published by Roberts Printing Co., Frankfort, 1936.