Born, Jan. 19, 1840 at Brady’s Bend, Armstrong County, Thomas Hays was the son of Robert and Deborah J. (McKee) Hays. He attended public and private schools; taught at Watersonville; enlisted as a corporal, Sept. 24, 1861, Co. B, 103rd Regt., PVI, three-year service; deployed to Fortress Monroe, June 1862; action at the battles of Williamsburg, Yorktown, Fair Oaks, Seven Pines, and Malvern Hill before transferring to Battery L, 4th U.S. Light Artillery, June 1862, fit with 12-pound Napoleons. Participated in the Siege of Suffolk, Va.; Drury’s Bluff; destroyed the Petersburg Railroad; supported Sear’s Cavalry Brigade in Jackson, N.C.; action at Bermuda Hundred; Valley Farm; Walthall Junction; joined Grant at Gaines Farm; Chickahominy; Cold Harbor; and the Petersburg Campaign. The Battery dismounted on Nov. 13, 1864 at Petersburg. Corporal Hays returned to farming and bred cattle and horses before pursuing oil, real estate, and banking interests. He served as a five-term school director; member of the state House of Reps., 1902-1908; and was elected to the Senate in 1909 for one term. He married Keziah J. Foster. The Hon. Thomas Hays passed away in Butler, February 29, 1920.