Oquawka Township.
Luke Wadleigh. It is supposed that all the Wadleighs of the United States are descended from three brothers who emigrated from Scotland to America some 240 years ago. Ephraim Wadleigh was born in New Hampshire. His three brothers were in the revolution, and he heard the guns at Lexington. He married Miss Little, also a native of New Hampshire. They became well-to-do. In 1800 they sought a home in Canada East, settling in the dense forest sixty miles from any place where provisions could be had. Their experience was at times were bitter, but contentment was recompensed. Mr. Wadleigh placed $400 in the hands of the man of whom he bought his tract of land, for the purpose of securing a charter to the land. The money was squandered; the man returned for more money; Mr. Wadleigh prevailed upon him to appoint him to go to Quebec to secure the charter. Leaving his family in the dense forest alone, he started for Quebec on foot through forest and over stream. He was detained eighteen days in Quebec. Finally, the charter secured, and anxious to return to his family, he left Quebec at two o'clock in the afternoon, walking at an almost incredible speed till late into the night, then sleeping on the floor of a cabin into which he was admitted by two men who declared he had never walked from Quebec that afternoon. But he proved his story by the date of his charter. Early morning found him on his journey. In little more than three days he arrived home, having walking the distance of 180 miles, through the wildest country, sometimes swimming streams with his clothes on his back. He became wealthy and a prominent man, taking part in all progressive measures. He died June 12, 1852, aged eighty-two years, his wife surviving him till the following February. both are buried in Canada. Luke, son of the above, was the youngest of eight children. He was born August 10, 1810, in Hatley, Stanstead county, Canada East. His youth was spent in the school of toil, whose book was nature and whose pencil was an ax. Many a hard day's work was done in erasing the old forest figures from the old blackboard, earth. His father gave him a year and a half of his time on a farm of 160 acres, in Sherbrook county. It was partly improved. Young Wadleigh went to work clearing, grubbing and tilling. He added land until he owned about 1,150 acres. He furnished great quantities of timbers for railroads. He raised cattle and fine horses, and in every way became successful. He was made the school commissioner three years, township counselor three years, then county counselor, serving the public about twelve years. Mr. Wadleigh was married October 30, 1830, to Miss Phebe Rowell, a Native, of Canada. Four children were born to them: Samuel (now of Burlington, Iowa), Mary (now Mrs. P. H. Chapin, of Kansas), Lydia (now Mrs. Charles Blandin, of Blandinsville), and Jennie. In 1856 Mr. Wadleigh made his home in Oquawka, Illinois, where he engaged in the lumber business. He continued this unsuccessfully for a time. Since that he has superintended his his farms near Oquawka. His son Samuel resided in Oquawka some time. He was active in city affairs. Mr. and Mrs. Wadleigh have been many years members of the Methodist church. Their lives have been active ones, such as the world needs.

Olena Township. Page. 201
, son of the preceding, lived with his parents until 1869, when, on the 29th day of March he married Sarah A., daughter of Kinzey and Eliza Hill, of Terre Haute, and made his home in Mt. Pleasant township, Warren county, Illinois. His wife departed this life in February, 1879, shortly after the birth of her youngest child, and is buried at Raritan. She left six children: William Sherman, born in 1870; Lemuel F., in 1872; Elzey, in 1874; Grace, in 1876; Lovisa, in 1878; and Sarah A., in 1879. Mr. Wagy is connected with the masonic lodge at Raritan; also with the order of United Workmen.

Oquawka Township.
James R. White, one of Oquawka's esteemed citizens, was born in Franklin county, Pennsylvania, in 1818. His early life was spent on a farm and he obtained what in those days was called a good common school education. In his younger years he had given some little attention to the study of civil engineering, and after coming to Henderson county, in 1853, he was employed as deputy county surveyor, and soon after was elected as surveyor of Henderson county. This, however, he abandoned in 1859 and went to the Colorado mountains, where he engaged in mining. It was while there that the war of 1861-5 broke out, and he enlisted in Co. C, 2d Colorado. Cav., and went south in defense of his country's flag. After following the fortunes of war over three years, making many tedious marches and running many narrow escapes, he was honorably discharged and returned to Oquawka, and has since been constantly engaged as salesman and bookkeeper for R. Hodson, Esq. His first wife Lydia (Jacoby) White, died in 1868. She was the mother of his only child, a son, Albert B., now of Kansas city, Missouri. His second marriage was with Mrs. Mary J. Bigelow, whose companionship he still enjoys.

Biggsville Township, Page 1353-1354
JOHN A. WILSON, son of John M. and Eliza (Duffield) Wilson, was born in Fairfield county, Ohio, December 11, 1833. Soon after his birth his father removed to Franklin county, where John A. grew to manhood on a farm. During the years that boys usually secure an education, with him schools were few, and the few that did pretend to exist were on the old subscription principle. Hence, to gain an education was a thing almost impossible to a poor boy. In 1856 he came to Illinois, arriving in Oquawka July 17. Here he at once went to work as a common laborer, and persistently applied himself to work wherever and whenever he could earn a dollar or a shilling. October 28, 1858, he was united in marriage with Miss Sarah J. Thompson, the daughter of William and Margaret (Wilson) Thompson. She was born in Brown county, Ohio, July 3, 1838. His first farm was sixty acres, bought in Warren county. To make his first payment on this he borrowed the money. In 1865 he sold this and bought of A. Y. Graham ninety-three acres in S.W. 1/4 of Sec. 14, T. 10, R. I. Some time after he added to his first purchase an eighty-acre tract adjoining him on the east. His home, farm and surroundings have an appearance of neatness, industry and thrift, and his entire time is devoted to the care of his farm and agricultural pursuits. His five interesting children, named in the order of their birth, are : Rosetta, Elizabeth A., James A., Sarah E. and Hiram. Mr. Wilson and wife are members of the United Presbyterian church. Mr. Wilson's parents were natives of Ohio, and his grandparents of Pennsylvania. The latter were among the early pioneers of the Buckeye State. His grandfather Wilson served with energy throughout the war of 1812. He permanently settled in Fairfield county, near Lancaster, Ohio.
Bedford Township. Page. 279-280
Hugh G. Woodside was born in Washington county, Virginia, June 30, 1825. When about nine years old he came with his father's family, in the fall of 1837, and settled in the northwest corner of McDonough county, where his father bought a quarter-section of land on which there was slight improvement. After he had made some improvements and lived on the place a short time, a man with a forged title came on and his father bought that also. He remained on the place until the time of his death, in 1854. He was married in North Carolina to Miss Jane Galliher. They had seven children: Nancy, Mary, James, Julia, William and H. G., subject. One other was born in North Carolina and died there while young. Mr. H. G. Woodside was married in McDonough county in 1851 to Miss Catharine Wilson, of the same county. Thirteen children was the result of this union, as follows: Nancy, Jane, William, Henry, Edward, Annetta, Andrew E., Alonzo, Grant, Charles, Minnie. Those not named died while young. His grandfather, James Woodside, was a soldier in the war of 1812. Mr. Woodside received such an education as the times afforded. He was a pupil in the first school established in Bedford precinct. This was a subscription school and was held in a log house near Bedford church. Mr. Woodside has been chosen assessor of Bedford precinct for several years.

Bedford Township. Page. 267-268
Jacob and H. V. Young were born in New Jersey and came to Fairview, Fulton county, Illinois, about the year 1840 or 1841, whither they were soon after followed by their parents and two other brothers. Their parents located permanently near Fairview, where they died and were buried. Our subjects removed from Fairview to Henderson county about 1865 or 1866. They immediately after their arrival bought a farm of 160 acres of land on the N. E. 1/4 of Sec. 22. The country was just then in its infancy, and out of the wild prairie they have made a fine farm, and the substantial farm buildings erected by them show evidence of enterprise and a verification of the old adage that in union there is strength. The two brothers live and work together. Mrs. H. V. Young's grandparents were among the very first settlers in Fulton county. Her father is still living at the good old age of eighty years, and her grandfather was a revolutionary soldier.

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Copyright 2000

Connie Lovitt Bates