I was researching the Slifer family of Hancock County, since they are connected to my tree by marriage into the Varner family of Posey County, Indiana. Here's what I've found so far:
JACOB SLIFER was born in Elos, Germany, on the 13th day of October, 1811. His father and family embarked on a ship for America in 1817. After sailing one week, a severe storm came up and drove the vessel, a total wreck, into the English Channel. The captain of the unfortunate ship was ruined, and the father of Mr. Slifer lost the amount which he had paid for their passage, and being in limited circumstances, his two oldest children were sold to pay their fare. After seventeen weeks at sea they landed in America, where young Slifer attended school for a short time, was then bound to a farmer until eighteen years of age, after which he worked at the shoe-maker’s trade for three years, clerked in a store in Philadelphia for twelve months, and came to Hancock county in 1834; was married to Miss Jane Lewis and settled in the wilds of this county in very limited circumstances, where he endured the privations of pioneer life. He has served two terms as County Commissioner**, and is now bountifully supplied with this world’s goods. (Excerpt from "History of Hancock County, Indiana: from its earliest settlement by the “pale face,” in 1818 down to 1882," by J.H. Binford, King & Binford Publishers, Greenfield, Ind., first edition, 1882; available online at http://www.archive.org/details/historyhancockc01binfgooghttp://www.archive.org/details/historyhancockc01binfgoog)
**Elected County Commissioner in 1856, according to the "History of Hancock County, Indiana: its people, industries and institutions," by George J. Richman, p.79 (available at http://www.archive.org/stream/historyofhancock00rich)http://www.archive.org/stream/historyofhancock00rich). Also, one of the incorporators of the Farmer’s Insurance Association of Hancock County, 4 November 1878 (p.160). He went into the grocery business and by 1838 had opened Lewis & Slifer in Hancock County (p.394). He is counted among the earliest landowners in Jackson Township on page 715.
Another book including information on the Slifer family can be found at Archive.org ( http://www.archive.org/stream/pioneer_00hardhttp://www.archive.org/stream/pioneer_00hard ) or on Ancestry, "The Pioneer," by Samuel Harden of Anderson, Indiana, William Mitchell Printing Co, Greenfield, Ind., 1895. That is where I found information about Mary A. Slifer who married Samuel Varner of Posey County, Indiana.