These are out of the 1886 Portrait & Biographical Album of Knox Co., IL. They were typed by Kathy Mills & emailed to me. Thanks bunches & bunches Kathy...... My hat is off to you... woman...
if you need the source page and page numbers for your family files.
I thank you bunches & bunches.
To search this page to see if you have any of your relatives on it use your browser. Go to Edit at the top, scroll down to Find, click here, type in surname, click down.... Walla Walla there are many biographies here I haven't put in the 1886 Index as of yet. They are in the Free Find Search engine on the Index page or use your browser. Just haven't taken the time and also need to do a few other things but wanted these online now before the holidays. Merry Christmas everyone....
WILLIAM ARMS, resident of Knoxville, was born in Conway, Franklin Co, Mass., March 31, 1818, and is the youngest son of Henry and Experience (Gates) Arms. (see sketch of Henry Arms.) He grew to manhood in his native town and was reared on the farm, and educated in the public schools. After he was 21 he was employed on neighboring farms, and in 1842, possessed of an ambition to do and to be something, he came west to seek a home, journeying by way of stage to Troy, thence by rail and canal to Buffalo, and from there by lake to Toledo. He then took the railroad to Adrian, Mich., going thence via stage and private conveyance to Knoxville, where two of his brothers lived. The first two years he clerked for them, and after that engaged in the manufacture of brick. In 1854 he became interested in the hardware business, which he followed for ten years, then sold out and entered the United States service as a carpenter. After the forces were organized he was appointed cook and remained in the service until the close of the war. Since that time he has been variously employed; was for eight years Street Commissioner in the city of Knoxville; has been Assessor, and has served as City and Township Collector. Politically he was formerly a Whig, and joined the Republican party when it was formed. He still adheres strongly to most of its principles, but is also a Prohibitionist.
Mr. Arms was united in marriage with Ann Elizabeth Smith Aug. 7, 1845. She was born at Camden, N.Y., and is the daughter of William and Polly (Pond) Smith, both natives of Connecticut. Our subject and his wife are the parents of four children, as follows: Henry G., born May 15, 1846, enlisted in 1863 in Co. A., 77th IL. Vol. Inf., joining Banks’ command at New Orleans. He was in the Red River expedition and was captured by the enemy April 8, 1864, remaining in their hands until May 1865 at Camp Ford, Texas. He now lives in Knoxville. The remaining children are Albert C., born Marcy 28, 1849, a merchant residing in Elmwood; Clara Amelia, living in Lewistown, IL; and Brainard Orton, a merchant at Knoxville.
JAMES E. BROWN, ----- This is my cousin on my Terpening side of the family if you are related to this man and see this biography please email me ------treasurer of the G. W. Brown Corn-Planter Co., of Galesburg, was born in Warren County, IL., April 12, 1837. He is the son of G.W. Brown (see biography), was reared on the farm and at the age of 19 was sent to Galesburg, and was in the shop up to 1862; he then returned to farming, at which he continued for 12 years, but eventually went back to his shop work. He has continued in the works since 1874, and at the organization of the company, in 1880, was appointed its Treasurer.
Mr. Brown was united in marriage at Galesburg, May 2, 1859, with Mary E. Musser, a native of Portsmouth, Ohio, and is the father of three children—Jennie E. (Mrs. M. J. Dougherty), George E., Director of G. W. Brown & Co., and Flora M. Their family circle is a pleasant and agreeable one, and he is a solid and substantial citizen. He belongs to no secret order, but is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He was one of the organizers of the First National Bank of Galesburg, and has been a member of its Board of Directors since that time.
Alonzo C. CLAY, was born in Chester County, Vt., Feb. 13, 1829. He was educated in Galesburg, but preferring agricultural pursuits has followed that calling all his life. He is the son of John L. and Louisa (Balch) Clay, natives of Vermont, and is of English extraction. Mr. Clay knows very little of any home other than Knox County, as he came here with his parents in 1840. He is a man of integrity, and his reputation has caused him to be sought as an incumbent of township offices. He is a Director of the Farmers’ and Mechanics’ Bank of Galesburg, and is one of the wealthy men of the county, owning from 800 to 900 acres of fine land, 450 of which lie in this county.
In 1880, prompted by the wishes and arguments of political advisers, he permitted his name to be used as candidate for the State Senate, and he has also filled minor official positions in the county.
He was married in 1854, at Knoxville, then his home, to which he removed from Henderson, and later to Galesburg, now his residence. His father died in 1878, at the mature age of 76.
Our subject was active in the construction of the county jail, being appointed Superintendent at the time. In religious belief he has no choice, and does not affiliate with any secret order. In politics he is Democratic.
WILLIAM R. HOYLE, JR., now the head of the long-established firm of Hoyle & Son, manufacturers of mill picks and miners’ tools, 317 East South Street, Galesburg, was born at New Haven, Conn., Aug. 11, 1842, and was the younger of two sons of William R. and Elvira (Bristol) Hoyle, natives of England and Connecticut respectively.
William Hoyle, Sr. was born May 15, 1810, in Folkestone, county of Kent, England, and came to America in 1830; he was married in Connecticut, where his two sons and two daughters were born, and brought his family to Galesburg in 1857, and at once established the business now managed by the subject of this sketch, and from which he retired in 1877. He at this writing (January, 1886) resides in Chicago, and is upward of 76 years of age. In the manufacture of mill picks he attained the highest perfection. In fact the secret (now possessed by his son) of making a perfect mill pick from steel was discovered by him, and is known today to no other man on the American continent. Various picks have been worked off by manufacturers upon millers throughout the United States, only to result in failure, disappointment and consequent distrust. But now it is no longer questioned, especially with the thousands who have tried them that a perfect pick can be and is manufactured by this firm, and at a price that renders their expense to a miller merely nominal. They send these goods to every state and territory in the Union, and in no single instance have they failed to give the greatest satisfaction.
Mr. Hoyle of our sketch is one of the most prominent Masons in the city, and in the work of the Blue Lodge and Chapter ranks second to none. He has been six times in succession elected Worshipful Master of Vesper Lodge, No. 584, and is at this writing Principal Sojourner of Galesburg Chapter, No. 46.
He was married at Galesburg, May 28, 1867, to Miss Josephine Eggleston, who died Oct. 26, 1882, leaving five children, namely: Edward R., who is a mechanic; Nettie, William, Emily, Julia, and an infant, deceased.
JONATHAN KNAPP, one of the successful farmers of Knox County is found in the person of our subject, whose home is situated on section 13, Copley Township. Mr. Knapp was born in Gallia County, Ohio, Aug. 11, 1821, and is the son of Abraham and Rachel (Cherrington) Knapp, natives of Virginia. They moved from Virginia to Ohio in 1804, settling in Gallia County, where they remained until their deaths in 1825 and 1841. They had a family consisting of ten children, four of whom are still living—Margaret, Moses, Lucinda, and Jonathan.
The subject of our sketch remained at home about four years after the death of his parents and assisted in the farm work, attending school in the meantime. Longing to see the “far west”, after leaving home, he visited Illinois, and in 1853 settled in Knox County, purchasing 180 acres of land on section 24. There he lived on the place, working it and cultivating it for four years. He now owns and occupies the homestead on section 13, consisting of 160 acres, and has improved it and brought out its best qualities. He has fenced it, set out fruit and shade trees, and done everything possible to give it a cheery, homelike appearance. He is interested in the raising of grain and cattle, in which he is very successful.
Mr. Knapp was married July 3, 1856, to Miss Mary Jane Olmstead. Mrs. Knapp is the daughter of Darius and Electa (Sornborger) Olmstead, natives of Connecticut and New York respectively. He came to Illinois in 1840 and lived here 19 years, dying in 1859. The mother died in New York in 1830. The family circle included eight children, Mrs. Knapp being the only one living.
Mr. and Mrs. Knapp of this sketch have a family of three children—Josephine, Frank, and Daniel; the latter died in 1869. Mr. Knapp belongs to the National party and has held offices of different kinds in his township. He is very pleasant and popular and is at the present time School Director and Pathmaster, and an honest man and a good citizen.
JUDGE ALFRED KNOWLES, a retired capitalist of Galesburg, was born in Hampden, Me., Dec. 10, 1809. His parents, Amasa and Mercy (Simpson) Knowles, were natives respectively of Maine and England. Alex. Knowles came to Connecticut in 1620, and from him sprang the family. He was Councilor to the Governor. Amasa K. was at sea until after he was over 50 years of age. He was married in the State of Maine, and became the father of four sons and four daughters. Our subject was the third son and went to sea with his father at the age of 12 or 13 years, following the life of a sailor until he was 21. He received an ordinary education, which was completed by a short term at the academy. He then taught five winters in the State of Maine, and afterward engaged in mercantile business at Newport and Hampden for five or six years.
Our subject emigrated to Illinois in 1836, and settled in Warren County, and in the spring of 1837 brought his family. He engaged in farming three years, and in 1840 made one trip on a flatboat to New Orleans. When the county was divided he was on the southwest corner of Henderson Township. In the spring of 1841 he was elected County Clerk and served for seven years. The first three, he held the place of Probate Judge and Recorder, and during the same term was appointed Commissioner in Bankruptcy. Subsequent to this he went into a warehouse, and afterward engaged in a steam saw-mill, besides working at the pork-packing business five or six years. In 1851 he became associate partner with Roy & Chapin, dry goods merchants at Oquawka and Kirkwood. With them he remained for five years, and in 1856 removed to Kirkwood, taking charge of their store at that place. Then, in 1858, he came to Galesburg, selling his interests at Oquawka and at Kirkwood in 1860, after which he became interested in the grocery trade. He also bought a half interest in the steam flouring-mills, and in 1871 sent the mill to Kansas, and he is yet its owner. In 1861 he served one term as Mayor of Galesburg; was on the Board of Supervisors one term afterward, and has been a Trustee of Lombard University since 1851, with the exception of two years. He was on the Executive Committee 25 years, and served as Clerk of that organization for 17 years. For seven or eight years he has served on the School Board, and has been Director of the Second National Bank since 1863. He was President of the Morris County State Bank of Kansas, serving five years, from 1878 to 1882.
Judge Knowles and Miss Whitney were united in marriage in the State of Maine. He was then but 23 years of age, and he lost the wife of his youth by death in 1845. She had borne her husband three children, one only, Edwin by name, surviving. He is a banker, and resides at Topeka, Kansas; Henry, the eldest, was a Union soldier, and after courageous service in the army was thrown, with countless others, into Andersonville prison, where he lingered so long that, on being sent home, he died from the effects of its cruelties.
Judge Knowles was a second time united in marriage, the last time at Monmouth, IL, in 1846, with Miss Kate Smalley, of Virginia. Two sons were born of this marriage—Howard, who was Internal Revenue Collector at Peoria until July 1885, and Frank, a resident of California. There are also two daughters—Mary (Mrs. J. S. Alsbaugh) and Nellie (Mrs. George Chapman).
WILLIAM H. LEIGHTON, within the confines of Knox County are clustered some of the homesteads that taste, persevering labor and money have founded, and prominent among these is the farm lying on section 17, Copley Township, owned by the subject of our biography. From a humble beginning, and with the principle in his mind, “know no such word as fail,” he has struggled to the heights of prosperity on which he now stands.
Mr. Leighton was born in New York City in 1835, on the 8th of October. His parents, William and Isabelle (Ironside) Leighton, were natives of Scotland, and came to America in 1832. The family remained in the city, where the father engaged as clerk in a store. He worked there and also for a printing-house, and fortune began to smile upon his efforts. In 1837 he came to Knoxville, and there worked at whatever employment he could find for some length of time. He continued thus for some years, then engaged in the mercantile business, and followed this for a few years, gaining a goodly number of customers and friends. He after a time sold out his store and began farming on section 17, in Copley Township. He purchased here 220 acres of land and remained on the same quite a number of years. After that he purchased 530 acres on section 13, Sparta Township, where he remained until his death, in 1861. The mother died in 1840.
William H. Leighton lived at home until 25 years old. He received a practical education, better than many boys, and in 1863 purchased the place where he now lives. This comprises 180 acres, and he has devoted his time to the raising of stock and grain, in which he has been very successful. Mr. Leighton relates a little incident connected with the thrashing in 1863; while oiling the machine his clothes caught in the gearing and were stripped from his body, except his boots and shirt-band. He had purchased a jack-knife the day before, and that and his clothes and $85 in greenbacks were ground to paper-rags. He sent the money that was ground to pieces to Washington, and they remitted him $30.
Our subject was united in marriage to Miss Janette McKee, who was born July 13, 1842, and is the daughter of William and Margaret (Miller) McKee. They were natives of Scotland, and came to America in 1840, settling in Persifer Township, Knox County. Here they remained for two years and then moved to Copley Township, where they lived on section 18, and continued there until the death of the father, in 1848, and the mother in 1880.
Mr. Leighton has a family of five children, including Maggie, May, Isabelle, Alice, and Charles. He has a most amiable and intelligent family, and their home is a pleasant resort, good cheer always abounding there. Mr. Leighton is Republican in politics, and has held many of the minor offices, among them Commissioner of Highways, Supervisor, School Director and Trustee. At the present time he holds the office of Supervisor. Both himself and wife are members in good and regular standing in the Presbyterian Church.
MICHAEL MOUNT, ~ Confederate Soldier ~ passenger conductor on the C., B. & Q. R. R., is the son of William and Alzeria (Cates) Mount, natives of Virginia and Tennessee. He was born near Knoxville, Tenn., Jan. 22, 1841. His father was a farmer by occupation, and died near his old home in 1858, aged 58 years.
The subject of this sketch was inured to farm life, the duties whereof were interspersed with occasional attendance at the neighboring school. Before he was 20 years of age, at which time he left home, he augmented his learning materially by a course at a commercial school, with a view to still further advancement in study.
But the war between the States broke out, and as early as February 1861, young Mount presented himself at Strawberry Plains as a volunteer of the Southern Army, and at once became a member of Capt. Lynch’s battery. He was in a short time transferred to the 1st Tenn. Cav., and was with this command until he left the service, which he did at the surrender of Vicksburg, where he was made prisoner, July 4, 1863.
In the December following he came to Quincy, IL., where he obtained employment until August 1864, when he became brakeman on the C., B. & Q.R.R. From freight brakeman he became passenger brakeman and two years later, in 1866, train baggage-man. In 1869 he was placed in charge of a freight train as conductor, and in 1884 promoted to a passenger train, where we find him, January 1886, and where his numerous friends hope to find him for many years to come. To rise from a freight brakeman to a permanency in the conductorship of a C., B. & Q. passenger train is considered by railroad men in this country as the highest testimonial of merit. We use the word permanency in its limited sense; no man is ever permanently with any railroad company unless he owns it, but the term distinguishes the regular employee in any department from the novitiate.
Mr. Mount was married at Fowler, Adams Co. IL, April 9, 1868, to Miss Annie Mitchell, daughter of James W. Mitchell, Esq., of that county. They have become the parents of three children, living, named Charles H., Alzeria, and Rolla, and have buried one infant. Mr. Mount is a Knight Templar and a member of Galesburg Commandery, No. 8, and also belongs to the A.O.U.W.; he is also a member of the Order of Railway Conductors.
PROF. W. C. PARKER, prominent as a professional gentleman, respected as a citizen and honored for his sterling worth and integrity, is the subject of this notice, residing in Galesburg. He is engaged in dealing in all kinds of music and is also a teacher of vocal and instrumental music, and has attained prominence in his profession. He came to Galesburg in the spring of 1875. Two years later he established a music store on Prairie Street, where he operated successfully until May of that year, when he engaged in the business which he is now carrying on at 121 Main Street.
Prof. Parker was born in Madison County, N.Y., April 23, 1832. His parents were natives of that State and there resided until their death. Prof. Parker was educated in his native county, in the schools of Syracuse, and prior to attaining his majority he spent seven years in the study of vocal and instrumental music, having studied at Boston, Newburyport and New York City, and completed his education under the instruction of the celebrated German, Prof. Held, together with that of Prof. Allen, an American instructor. After completing his education he took up his residence at Syracuse, where he followed his profession for some six years. While there he established a musical institute, and during his residence in that city was busily occupied in conducting the same. From Syracuse he removed to Valparaiso, Ind., where about 1864, he established a conservatory, where he was engaged in teaching until 1871, meeting with signal success. He then came to this State, and settling in Waterloo, he started another conservatory, which was at that time the largest institution of the kind in the west, and from which a great many pupils graduated.
From Waterloo Prof. Parker came to this city, and on account of ill health, partially abandoned teaching and turned his attention to the sale of music. He has been a thorough student and has done much to advance the musical interests of the communities in which he has resided. His skill is remarkable, and his ability as a teacher is well known, not only in this county and State, but in many of the States east and west of this. His experience has been extensive, and he claims to have been the instructor of as many pupils in his art as any other living man.
In May 1875, Prof. Parker was married at Waterloo to Miss Cornelia Drake, daughter of B. S. Drake, of New Haven, N.Y. She was born Oct. 14, 1853, and was educated in New York. She began teaching school at the age of 17, and followed her chosen vocation until her marriage. She also graduated in music under her husband’s instruction in 1872, and is credited with possessing unusual musical talent. She has very materially assisted her husband in teaching the art, and in their united efforts they have been eminently successful. Mrs. Parker is a member of the Baptist Church, and socially Prof. Parker is a member of the Knights of Pythias; in politics he votes with the Republican party.
WILLIAM RISER, prominent among the early settlers and practical farmers of Knox County may be noted the subject of this biography, who is well known in business circles, and at the present time is engaged in the grocery trade in Knoxville. He was born in Virginia, Jan. 20, 1812. His father, Abraham Riser, was a native of Germany, where he was reared as a farmer. When young he emigrated to America, locating in Ohio, and there married Mary Bohrer, also born in Germany. After marriage they removed to Virginia, where they lived for about two years, then returned to Ohio and settled in Clermont County, where the husband and father died in 1812. He left a wife and two children to mourn his loss, and his widow, after a short time, remarried and spent her last days in Pickaway County, Ohio.
Our subject was but a few months old when his father died, and he made his home with his mother and stepfather until he attained the age of 13. He then started out to make his own way in the world. The first two and one-half years he lived with an uncle at New Holland, Pickaway County, assisting him in the store, and obtaining a rudimentary business drill. He was fond of mercantile pursuits, and though afterward he labored four years with Judge Tallman, a farmer and extensive stock-raiser, he never abandoned the idea of some day engaging in trade. The Judge was often absent from home, leaving the young man in charge of the farm.
Mr. Riser was united in marriage in 1837, with Sarah Lawrence, of Ross County, Ohio, and soon afterward rented a farm in Pickaway County, where they lived until 1839. In October of that year they came to Knox County, making the entire journey overland with a pair of horses and several wagons. After a journey of 21 days they arrived at their destination, locating in Knoxville. In the spring of 1840, he rented a farm, without, however, abandoning his former business, and in 1841, brick-making having become a paying enterprise, he engaged in it until the fall of 1861, at which time he returned to Knoxville. In 1862 he was elected Collector of Knoxville and Knox Township, which position he held for 12 years, and when his official duties permitted employed his time as clerk at various places of business. In 1881, with his son as partner, he engaged in the grocery business until January 1885, when he sold out and bought a store on the west side of the Square, which he stocked with a well-assorted line of groceries.
Of the union of Mr. and Mrs. Riser have been born six children, as follows: Carrie, wife of W. C. Hollister, attorney at Edina, Mo.; Samuel D.; Anna, wife of George Woodmansee, of Fayetteville, Ark.; William H., resident of Holt County, Ohio; Emma, wife of Ed. Russell, living in Persifer Township; and Ada, widow of G. B. Swartz, living with her parents.
Mr. and Mrs. R. are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which he joined in 1833. In politics he is a strong Republican.
EDWARD H. STILSON, M.D., ~ Civil War Vet ~ a physician of Knoxville, was born in Waterville, Me., April 17, 1847, and is the son of Henry and Annis Stilson, natives of Maine. His father was a sailor, and master of a vessel in the mercantile marine service, and died in Hong Kong in 1847, leaving a wife and one child. After the demise of her husband, Mrs. Stilson went to Waterville, Me., where she made her home with her father-in-law, Mr. Lemuel Stilson. In 1855 the widowed mother of our subject emigrated to Illinois, and located at Clinton, De Witt County, where in 1857, she became the wife of D. B. Van Druver, and soon afterward removed to Bloomington, where her demise occurred in 1859.
The subject of this sketch joined his mother in Clinton in 1857. After her decease he came to Knox County, and lived with an uncle, J. F. Stilson, his biography is below, residing at Galesburg. He attended the city schools, and later on entered Galesburg Academy. In February 1863, he enlisted in Co. H., 14th IL. Vol. Inf. and went south. He participated in the battles of Columbia, S. C., Goldsboro and Raleigh.
On his return from the war Dr. Stilson entered the Preparatory Class of Knox College. He recommenced the study of medicine with Drs. W. W. Porter and M. S. Carr, in 1867. Mr. Stilson matriculated at Hahnemann College, Philadelphia, graduating therefrom in 1871. Subsequent to completing his studies he came directly to Knoxville, and engaged in the practice of his profession.
Oct. 20, 1884, Dr. E. H. Stilson and Miss Kate, the accomplished daughter of John and Hannah Eads, were united in the holy bonds of matrimony. Dr. Stilson is a member of Traflin Post, G. A. R., of which post he is also Surgeon, and of Pacific Lodge, No. 400, A.F. & A.M.
CAPT. J. F. STILSON, extensive dealer in hardware, agricultural implements, stoves, carriages, etc., Galesburg, IL., was born at Waterville, Me., March 5, 1827. His parents, Lemuel and Rhoda (Atwood) Stilson, natives of Maine, and descended from Scotch ancestors, were married at Frankfort, their native State, and at the town of Waterville, they reared their five sons and three daughters. Lemuel Stilson was a carriage manufacturer in his day, and the most extensive one in that State. He lived to be 62 years old, and died in 1858. His widow survived him about three years and died at the age of 62.
The subject of our sketch left the common schools and at the age of 16 commenced his seafaring life and followed it for 13 years thereafter. At the age of 22 he was promoted to Second Mate; at 23, to First Mate, and at 24 to Captain. He plied between New York and the various European ports, with an occasional voyage to the West Indies. Capt. Wheeler commanded the good ship of which young Stilson was mate, and Mrs. Capt. Wheeler divided the honors with the commander at a beautiful little cottage located in Hampdon, Me. At times, when the good ship was in port, a certain member of the cottage crew was wont to pay her respects to the commander, and in doing so necessarily fell under the eyes of the mate. Now this member of the dryland crew was of that age that naturally developed very rapidly many admirable characteristics, and the junior officer of the merchant vessel was also of that age most calculated to observe and appreciate such development. So it turned out in due process of time that the good old Captain learned that his trusted young officer had determined upon quitting the ocean and establishing a “dry-land craft”, the second officer whereof was to be the little sailor that but a few years before had played about the decks of the merchantman.
Capt. J. F. Stilson was married at Hampden, Maine, Feb. 22, 1853, to Miss Mary Ann Wheeler, the accomplished daughter of Capt. W. Wheeler, of the merchant marine. Though she made her young husband promise to quit the sea at once, she, instead, became his willing companion on many a long voyage. She accompanied her husband to Galesburg in 1856, and here yielded up her life in 1867. Of her four children we make the following brief mention: The eldest, Frank, is in business with his father; Minnie is an accomplished teacher in the High School; Charlotte is married to Mr. W. H. Chambers, one of Galesburg’s pushing merchants, and Annie W. is at home.
Capt. Wheeler came west in 1859, and died in Galesburg, in 1867, in the 64th year of his age. He spent 50 years of his life upon the ocean. Since coming to Galesburg Capt. Stilson has been engaged in his present business, associated, however, with two or three other parties at various times, and interested for some years in the manufacture of agricultural implements. In business he has been remarkably successful, and his rank in the mercantile world today is second to none in the county.
Capt. S.’s second marriage occurred in this city, Feb. 13, 1869, when he was united with Miss Emma Howland, a native of New York, and his youngest child, Earl, is now in college. Capt. Stilson had made his own way in the world; when he was 21 years of age, he visited his old home, and his mother presented him with two white shirts, which constituted the sum of his gratuities.
ROBERT N. WALLACE, a prominent grocer of Knoxville, was born in Montgomery County, Va., June 4, 1830, and his father, Robert Wallace, was also a native of Virginia. The maiden name of his mother was Sarah Wallace, born in Pennsylvania. Robert Wallace, Sr. was a farmer, confining his industries to a large farm of which he was proprietor in Montgomery County, and upon which he died in 1845.
Our subject was 15 years of age at the time of his father’s death, and then assumed the management of the farm. Though young, his judgment was good and his ideas logical, and success attended him. He continued at his labors until 1854, when he started west to seek a location where he might found a new home. Coming directly to Knox County, he engaged for two years in brick-making. The third year he resumed agricultural pursuits, and in 1857 purchased a small stock of groceries in a store that had been established for a few years. He added to the groceries from time to time, and afterward put in a stock of hardware, finally handling the latter exclusively. At the expiration of five years he sold out and bought a small farm within the corporate limits of Knoxville, upon which he remained for four years. In the spring of 1885 he again returned to the grocery business, which appears to have been his favorite occupation.
His union with Margaret Vance took place Feb. 23, 1854. She was born in Kentucky, and was the mother of three children—William M., and Sarah E., twins; Emma May. William M., born Dec.29, 1854, and died Sept. 19, 1885; Sarah E., his twin sister, died Dec. 25, 1858; Emma M. married a Mr. Watson, May 23, 1862, and died May 20, 1884, leaving one child with the subject of our history. Her husband died one month previously. The little orphan was taken into the home of Mr. Wallace and tenderly cared for.
GEORGE W. WEIR, prominent among the pioneers of Knox County, known for his energy and industry, and as an honorable and upright citizen, stands the subject of this historical narration He came to Rio Township in the fall of 1836, when only a boy of 19 years, from Morgan County, Ohio, and here began his labors for the establishment of a home, in which labors he has prospered in a manner far exceeding expectations.
When Mr. Weir came to Knox County, he engaged for a time in different occupations, among them farm labor, which lasted for nearly seven years, and at the expiration of that time he purchased a farm in Henry County. Here he settled and lived for 12 years, then sold out and bought land in Rio Township, upon which he permanently settled and engaged in its cultivation and improvement. He is now the owner of 334 acres in Rio Township, besides a half-section in Kansas.
Mr. Weir formed a matrimonial alliance Jan.7, 1844, with Miss Lydia J. Epperson, who has proved a helpmate in the truest and best acceptation of the term. She is a daughter of Pedro W. Epperson (see sketch), and was born in Kentucky, Dec. 16, 1825, coming to Knox County with her parents at the age of 11 years, in the spring of 1836.
Mr. and Mrs. Weir are the parents of nine children—William J., Anson N., James B., John F., George A., Charlie, Hattie L., and Mary D. Of these Hattie died when three years of age; one child, unnamed, died in infancy; William J. and Anson live in Missouri, both farmers, and the latter also engaged in stock-raising; James is a merchant and the Postmaster of Mount Pleasant, Kan.; John F. resides in St. Louis, MO., and is chief bill-of-lading clerk in the Superintendent’s office of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad; George A. and Charlie are engaged in stock-raising on the old homestead in Rio Township; and Mary D. is yet under the parental roof, giving lessons in music, embroidery, crochet, and other decorative work. In politics Mr. Weir is a Democrat.
D. Thomas, a farmer, residing on section 2,
Victoria Township, Knox County, was born in Guernsey County, Ohio,
Sept. 20, 1818. His parents were Enoch and Anna (Dilley) Thomas,
natives of Pennsylvania and New Jersey respectively. They came to
Ohio in an early day and settled in Guernsey County, purchasing 160
acres of land, to which they afterward added about 320 acres. They
had a family of 15 children, eight still living: Hannah, now Mrs.
Glassner; Lucy A., now Mrs. Campbell; Martha A., now Mrs. A. L.
Brooks; Mary C., now Mrs. King; William D., Enoch J., James and
Ephraim. The parents remained in Ohio until the death of the father
in 1857; the mother died July 12, 1882, aged 94 years.
The subject of our sketch remained at home until 22 years old, and assisted on the farm and attended school. After leaving home, he went onto a farm of 80 acres, in 1841, and lived on it until 1853. He then sold out, and purchased a woolen factory, operating the same two years, then sold it and came to Illinois, by wagon, and was on the road 23 days. He settled in Knox County, on section 34, Victoria Township, and purchased 90 acres, where he lived ten years. This he sold and moved onto section 2, same township, where he now lives, and purchased 160 acres, to which he has since added 240, and is engaged in the stock business.
Mr. Thomas was married to Miss Lovina Kinney, a native of Pennsylvania, and daughter of David and Mary (Shafer) Kinney. They were natives of New Jersey and Pennsylvania respectively, and came to Ohio in 1824, settling in Guernsey County.
They had a family of six children, five still living - Peter; Leah, now Mrs. Davis; John; Lovina, now Mrs. Thomas; Margrett, now Mrs. Morris, lives in Des Moines, Iowa. The parents lived in Ohio until their death in 1860 and 1864 respectively.
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas have a family of twelve children, nine still living: Margrett A., now Mrs. McClanahan, has five children - Edna D., Daniel, Carl D., Franklin and Bert. John F. married Elizabeth Burch, and they have three children - John D., Ella, Sanoria. William F. married Eliza Patton; they have two children - Norris and Maud. Mary C., now Mrs. Mills, has three children - Estella, Bert and Bessie. Erastus R. lives in Nebraska; Elwood married Salome Keister; they have one child - John W.R.; Ruth, now Mrs. Guild, has one child, Ellison, and lives in Nebraska; Abraham L., also lives in Nebraska; Samuel.
Mr. Thomas in politics is a Greenbacker, and he and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is one of the representative and solid men of Victoria Township. (Foxie's Note: Kathy typed this bio twice it is also below.)
H. S. BRADFORD, of whose history we give a few brief details, is a farmer on section 3 in Haw Creek Township. He was born in the State of Maine, Sept. 27, 1809 and is the son of Charles and Elizabeth (Clark) Brown Bradford. The father of the subject of this sketch was a native of Massachusetts and his mother of Maine. The father in his younger days was a potter by trade, and removed to Ohio when his son, H. S. was four years old. There he followed farming, and about the year 1833 he removed to Knoxville, Illinois with his family. They came overland with teams. The father bought and improved land in Persifer Township, in this county, and made a home for himself and his family. He died on the homestead about the year 1873; the mother died at the same place in 1833, directly after coming to Illinois.
The subject of this notice was married to Hester Whiten in 1835. To this union wee born nine children, named as follows: Elizabeth, Ann M., William, Sophia, Louisa, Rufus, Alla, and Olive (twins) and Emma. His son William was a soldier in the late War for the Union. Mr. Bradford has 217 acres of land in Knox County, with good and comfortable buildings of all kinds. In politics he is a Republican. Some of these people are buried in the Bradford Cemetery, Persifer Township, Knox Co., IL.
JUDSON W. BRIGGS, a progressive farmer and honored citizen of this county, residing in Maquon Township, came to Knox County in the spring of 1856, and lived in Altona for one year, and in 1857 came to Maquon. He came from Madison County, N.Y. He learned the trade of tinsmith in Oneida, Oneida Co, N.Y., and followed the same for some three years and then came to Chicago, where he worked one winter. On coming to Altona he followed the same business. Arriving in Maquon, he followed his trade for about four years, and then engaged in farming and dealing in stock, which business he is at present following.
Mr. Briggs is the owner of 1,350 acres of land in this county. He was born in Madison County, N.Y., March 18, 1837. He received a somewhat limited school education, and when he was 11 years old he worked out by the month for $4. per month. When he was about 14 years of age he was apprenticed to learn the tinsmith’s trade, and after three years mastered the same. He was married in Maquon, Aug. 13, 1859 to Priscilla Jones, born in Meadville, Pa. and they have had four children—Ida, Charlie D., Frank, and Maud. The latter died when two years old. Ida is the wife of Wm. Coffman and resides in Chestnut Township; she has two children—Nina and Henry. Charlie married Lizzie Combs and resides in Maquon Township. Frank resides at home.
In politics Mr. Briggs is a Republican. His parents were Cyrus and Mary A. (Tinker) Briggs, natives of New York and Connecticut respectively. They married and settled in Madison County, N.Y., where the father died when Judson W. was quite young. The mother survives and resides in New York. They had five children—George, Cornelia, Ebenezer, Daniel and Judson W.
In 1883 Mr. Briggs opened a livery stable in Maquon, which he has since operated. He is an extensive shipper of hogs, cattle, and horses.
ERASMUS J. EAREL, among the more prominent and enterprising farmers of Knox County, noteworthy for persistent industry and financial ability, may be counted the subject of this sketch, a brief summary of whose personal history is herein given. He owns a farm on section 10 of Indian Point Township, and upon it stands a pleasant and attractive home. He is within a convenient distance of town privileges, living two and three-quarter miles southeast of Abingdon.
Mr. Earel, of this writing, was born in Adams County, IL., March 28, 1855, and came to Knox County in 1865 at the age of ten years. Considerable attention was given to his educational training and he seemed to possess a natural predilection for intellectual industry. He attended Hedding College three terms and his application won his golden opinions. He is the son of Harvey D. and Margaret Earel, the former of whom was born in Ohio in 1831, and the date of the latter parent’s birth not being positively known, the records, by some unfortunate circumstance, being lost.
Mr. Earel, of this sketch, lost his mother when about eight years of age. She died of congestive chills, the date of her death being 1863. She was the mother of five children, by name Mary E., who died at the early age of four years; Erasmus, Silas, Mary F., and Jennie F.
Mr. and Mrs. Erasmus Earel were united in the holy bonds of wedlock, July 3, 1878, and his wife’s maiden name was Mary Elwell. She was born Feb. 9, 1859, and was at the time of her marriage 19 years of age. She was the daughter of Jacob and Harriet (Haynes) Elwell, and her father was born in Indiana, July 4, 1835, while her mother, Miss Harriet Haynes, first saw the light of day Oct. 2, 1841. The father now lives in Van Buren County, Iowa. She died Aug. 20, 1865, leaving one child, a daughter, who is the wife of our subject. One year after Mrs. Elwell died, Mr. Elwell remarried, Mrs. Emily A. Laymon of Ohio being his chosen companion. Both she and her husband survive, and are living in the State of Iowa. To them were born five children, viz: Araminta, who died in infancy; Anna W., Myra, Hattie, and Ora. To Mr. and Mrs. Earel, of this sketch, have been given two children—Harley D. born April 18, 1879 and Jamie R., Aug. 30, 1882.
Mr. Earel is the owner of 100 acres of fine land and devotes himself to the breeding of good blooded cattle. He has always been prominent in public affairs and has held the office of School Director for a long period. In politics he affiliates with the Republican party and keeps his eyes open relative to public and private good. His wife is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church at Abingdon, and formerly attended the St. Mary’s Seminary at Knoxville, at which institution she remained two years. Mr. Earel has an intelligent and interesting family, and the home is a place of pleasant resort to friends and neighbors.
JAMES T. MAIN, is of English birth and descent, and is the son of John and Martha Main. He came to America about 1854, and worked at blacksmithing in Chicago two and a half years. Thence he came to Ontario Township, followed his trade for a time, and by the exercise of industry and economy, was enabled to purchase a farm of 80 acres, to which he subsequently added 80 acres more and now has a good farm and good buildings.
Mr. Main was married June 15, 1865 to Elizabeth, daughter of George and Elizabeth Edwards. Miss Edwards was born Oct. 23, 1842 in Somerton, England, and came with her parents to America and located in Ontario Township, where they now reside. To Mr. and Mrs. Main seven children have been born, viz: Nellie B., April 15, 1866; Carrie E., Nov. 27, 1870; Addie M., June 27, 1874; Dora, Oct. 23, 1876; James T., Aug. 16, 1879; Gertie E., Feb. 9, 1882; William A., Sept 16, 1884. Mrs. Main is a member of the Congregational Church. Mr. Main is an upright and worthy member of the community and greatly esteemed for his integrity and all those qualities which constitute the true man and good citizen. His comfortable surroundings have been secured by unremitting industry and the exercise of that judgment which has enabled him not only to acquire, but to take good care of what he has acquired, so that his later years may be passed in ease and contentment.
MRS. MARGARET A. BULKELEY, residing on section 9, Copley Township, Knox County, is the widow of Augustus W. Bulkeley, who died in 1879. He was married to Miss Margaret A. Conenhoven in New York City, in 1829. They were natives of Connecticut and New York, and came to Illinois and settled in Fulton County in 1839. They remained there 12 years, Mr. B. following the carpenter’s trade. He was also a contractor and employed from 5 to 30 men. He came to Knox County in 1851 and settled in Victoria for one year, then moved onto section 9, Copley Township, where he had previously purchased 160 acres, and continued to live there until his death. His parents were descendants of the English, who first made settlement in Concord, Mass. in 1636. The parents of Mrs. Bulkeley traced their ancestry back to Holland, some of whom came early to this country and first settled in New York.
Mr. and Mrs. Bulkeley had a family of ten children, six of whom are still living—Annie, now Mrs. Leach; Henry D.; Salinda W., now Mrs. L. B. Cummings; James C.; John A; and William I. James C. was born in Fulton County, IL., July 21, 1840, and remained at home until 1865. He then built a livery stable at Oneida village and carried on the same one year. Then he went to Washington County, Iowa, and there engaged in the same business for a few months, then returned to Oneida village and opened a grocery store, occupying himself thus until 1869, when he went to New Mexico and engaged in gold mining and remained 14 months, proceeding thence to Cheyenne, Wyoming Territory, Utah, Idaho, Montana, Washington, Oregon, and then to California. After these wanderings he then returned to Illinois and engaged in farming on the old homestead, where he has since lived. He was married June 10, 1879 to Miss Sarah Copley, a native of Pennsylvania, and they have two children—Rolly C. and Max M.
Miss Sarah Copley was the daughter of Joseph H. and Ruth A. (Hinman) Copley, natives of Delaware County, N.Y. They came to Illinois in 1858 and settled in Victoria Township, Knox County, and lived there eight years, then came to Walnut Grove Township and purchased 170 acres of land; from there they removed to Nebraska in 1881. They became the parents of five children, four of whom are still living—Sarah C., Emma H., Joseph B., and Isaac N.
Copley Township was named after Isaac Copley, a brother of the father of Mrs. Sarah Bulkeley. Mrs. B. was a graduate of Lombard University, Galesburg. Mr. James C. Bulkeley is a Democrat, and is one of the representative men of Copley Township.
NELSON W. BURNESON, ~ Civil War Vet. ~ a native of New York, was born in Otsego County, Dec. 31, 1838. He is a son of Samuel and Nancy (Robinson) Burneson, both of pioneer stock of Otsego County, N.Y. Samuel was a son of Andrew Burneson, a native of Ireland, who settled in Otsego County and hewed out a farm. Nancy Robinson was a daughter of Robert Robinson of the same ancestry as Andrew Burneson.
Nelson W. Burneson spent his boyhood in Philadelphia, his father being an engineer and machinist, who located in Philadelphia when N.W. was about six years old. The father died there, while in the employ of J. B. Lippincott & Co., in 1862. N.W. came west at the age of 19 and located in Altona. He did firing on an engine from 1859 to 1862. He then enlisted in Co. G., 89th IL. Vol. Inf., and did active and honorable service till the end of the war. He was promoted to Sergeant-Major of the regiment and participated in all the battles of the campaign. After the war he was engaged in firing for about two years and was then promoted to engineer, in which capacity he is at present engaged. He runs a passenger train, and is considered one of the most trustworthy engineers on the road.
Mr. Burneson was married in Oneida, Knox County, to Martha, daughter of Needham and Catherine (Raper) Rodgers, natives of North and South Carolina respectively, and pioneers of this county. Mrs. Burneson is a lady of very estimable attainments, who has blest their union with one little girl, Mattie Eva, a priceless little gem in their domestic circle. Mr. Burneson is a just and upright Mason, and stands well in the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers. He is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. He has always stuck strictly to his text and has never allowed himself to deviate from strict professional duties, holding his rights of citizenship independently with regard to all political and social matters, and although a pronounced partisan of the good old Democratic school of the State of New York, yet supports the man above party on all local issues. In social life he and his worthy lady enjoy a merited respect from all who know them.
MICHAEL H. COLLINS, a stock-buyer of Knoxville, was born in Pickaway County, Ohio. His father, Michael Collins, was a native of Ireland, born in 1800. When a young man he left his native land and came to America. He lived in New York City eight years, employed on public works. From there he went to Pennsylvania, thence to Maryland, and thence to Pickaway County, Ohio, where he purchased a small farm and resided until 1848, when he sold out and started for Iowa, accompanied by his wife and eight children, with a four-horse team. One of the children was taken sick at Knoxville and he tarried for a few days, and in the meantime he concluded to locate in Knox County. He bought a farm of 160 acres located in Knox Township. There was a log cabin on the place and 40 acres of land broken and fenced. He improved the remainder of the land and lived there until 1860, when he left his son Thomas in charge and moved to Copley Township, where he bought an improved farm of 240 acres and lived there until his death, Dec. 31, 1862.
The wife of the elder Mr. Collins was Margaret Griffin, born in Ireland, and coming to America when quite young. There were nine children born to them. The three oldest, May, Thomas, and John, were born in New York and the others in Ohio. The three eldest are dead. The survivors are Catherine, Michael H., Edward M., Margaret E., William, and Peter. Mrs. Collins died Nov. 4, 1864. After her death the children carried on the farms two years then sold out. William now lives in Bancroft, Neb.; Edward lives in Persifer Township; the remainder are in Knoxville; Margaret is the widow of George Wilson. She and her sister Catharine own a fine residence in Knoxville, and the subject of this sketch, a single man, makes his home with his sisters.
Mr. Collins is a member of Knoxville Lodge, No. 66, A.F.& A.M. The sisters are members of the Presbyterian Church.
GEORGE F. EDWARDS, senior member of the firm of Edwards & Taylor, dealers in groceries, etc., Altona, is also proprietor of the Edwards House and a first-class restaurant. Mr. Edwards came to Altona in 1879, and opened up the restaurant, afterward forming a partnership with Mr. Taylor in the grocery business, purchasing, Dec. 7, 1885, the stock of Mr. Frederick. In December 1880, Mr. Edwards bought and opened the “Edwards House”, running it in connection with his other business.
George Edwards was born in Somersetshire, England, March 4, 1844, his father, George, being a farmer and native of the same shire, where he was married to Elizabeth Hilborne. After the birth of a family of ten children, seven sons and three daughters, George Jr. being the youngest but one, they came with all the family to America, settling in Ontario Township, where the father purchased 120 acres of good land on which he still resides. The mother died June 23, 1885, aged nearly 65 years. Two other daughters were born to them after their arrival in Knox County.
George Edwards was 14 years old when the family came to this country, and when 18 years old began farming on his own account in Ontario Township, which he continued until 1877. During these years he had procured a good farm of 80 acres in that township, which he still owns, and since 1877 he has been engaged in the business in which he is at present interested.
Nov. 7, 1867, our subject was united in marriage with Miss Mary J. Noble, in Ontario Township. She was born in Cumberland, England in 1850, and came to this country with her parents, who were farmers, when a young woman, her mother dying on Quarantine Island, N.Y., while on the way out. Her father now resides in Kansas. Mrs. Edwards is the mother of one child—Nellie, a devoted daughter, who was born Aug. 20, 1868.
Mr. Edwards is a stanch Republican, and possesses excellent business abilities, which he has turned to good account, and better than all, is a useful, enterprising, public-spirited citizen, accommodating and courteous and well liked by the people among whom most of his years have been passed. He is yet a young man, and many years are yet before him in which to advance the interests of and serve his fellow-citizens.
CLARK GLENN, farmer, on section 31, Sparta Township, was born in Jefferson County, Ohio, Jan. 10, 1810. His parents were Thomas and Jane (Bromfield) Glenn, natives of Pennsylvania. They came to Ohio in 1807 and bought 135 acres of land, all of which was timbered, and lived there until their death, the former dying in 1842 and the latter in 1845. They had a family of ten children—John, Elizabeth, Jane, Polly, Nancy, James, Alexander, Mary A., William, and Clark. The subject of this sketch remained at home until 1846, then went to Wyandot County, Ohio, and bought 160 acres of land, and lived on the same eight years and in 1854 sold out and came to Illinois. In 1864 he settled where he now lives and purchased 80 acres.
Our subject was married in 1842 to Sarah Coe, a native of Ohio, and to them have been born six children; four are living and two are dead. The living are Jane B., John, William, and Rowlin. Benjamin died in the service of his country; Elizabeth E. died in 1881, aged 26 years.
Mrs. Glenn was killed by lightning in Knox Township, with an infant in her arms, while standing under a tree; the child lived only a few hours.
The second marriage of our subject was in 1857, to Miss Clarissa Percival, a native of Ohio. Mr. Glenn is a Republican, and with his wife is a member of the Presbyterian Church. He has held the office of Assessor in Knox Township for two years, and is one of the representative men of Sparta Township. His first vote was cast for Henry Clay in 1832, and he has voted at every one of the presidential elections except in 1872.
MARVIN H. GOFF, evangelist, veterinary surgeon and farmer, on section 23, Copley Township, was born in Medina County, Ohio, Oct. 17, 1839. His parents were William and Sarah A. (Bates) Goff. They were natives of Pennsylvania and New York respectively, and married Nov. 20, 1821. They came to Illinois in 1844, and settled in Copley Township, on section 14, and remained there until their deaths. They had a family of 14 children, five of whom are still living—Rhuma N., Marvin H. Royal F., Mariette, and Warren T. The father of our subject was a farmer and veterinary surgeon, and followed the same until his death. He owned 210 acres in Copley Township, on section 14.
The subject of this sketch remained at home until 14 years old; then worked out on a farm by the month, and during winters attended school. He purchased his own books and paid his own tuition, and continued at school until 18 years of age. He was married Feb. 4, 1858 to Miss M. Smith, daughter of George and Rebecca (Messmore) Smith. Her parents were natives of Ohio, and came to Illinois in 1853 and settled in Victoria Township. They had a family of eight children, six still living—John M., Mary E., Sarah, Abigail, Hannah, and Margaret.
Mr. Goff, of this notice, has ten children living—Julia, John R., Mary L., Marvin H., Sarah R., George W., Abbie M, Charles L., Lewis A., and Maggie O. Julia is now Mrs. Grim; Mary L. became Mrs. Mitchell; and John R. was married to Miss L. Ross.
Mr. Goff, after his marriage, bought school and other books and taught himself at night after his days work, learning Greek and Hebrew. He rented a farm for seven years after marriage, and then bought 80 acres of brush land in Victoria Township, paying for the same $500. He made a payment of $50. on the place, and sold the same in three weeks at a profit of $300. In 1867 he purchased 40 acres of improved land in Copley Township, and lived on the same two years, then sold it and moved to Missouri and remained three years, renting land. While there he commenced to preach, and in 1871 returned to Illinois, settling in Copley Township, where he now lives. He has 145 acres of good land and is engaged in mixed farming. Mr. Goff is a Republican in politics, and has held the office of Justice of the Peace.
GEORGE H. GRAVES, general farmer and bee-raiser, section 19, Walnut Grove Township, is a son of John G. Graves, also a farmer and bee-grower, who came from New Hampshire, where he was born, to Illinois, in 1858, and lived in Walnut Grove Township till his death, May 26, 1884. He was of New England parentage, of English descent, and was married in his native State to Emeline Shedd, who is yet living with her son. The father died of paralysis of the heart while sitting in his chair. Three children were born to the mother, our subject being the oldest but one. Two are yet living—our subject and Charles G., who is married and resides in Oneida. The youngest died at the age of one year.
Our subject was born in Cheshire County, N. H., May 22, 1853. Since his parents came to Illinois he has made this county and township his home. He received a good common school education, lived at home, and since the death of his father he has operated the farm under his own charge, and now owns 85 acres of well-improved land. His bee-raising has been conducted in connection with his farming. He is a skillful manager of bees, as was his father before him.
Feb. 9 1880, Mr. G. was married in Galesburg to Miss Minnie Sherman, who was born near Galesburg, Oct. 3, 1861. She was reared and educated in Knox County. Her parents were farmers from York State, and came to this county about 1849, and are now living in Woodhull.
Mr. Graves and wife are the parents of two children—M. Emeline, born in November 1881, and George H., Jan. 3, 1884.
DAVID GREENLEAF, a leading druggist of Galesburg and President of the Electric Light and Power Company of that city, is a native of Hartford, Conn., where he was born Jan. 16, 1828. His parents were Dr. Charles and Electa (Tucker) Greenleaf, and were both of early New England families, tracing their respective ancestry to the French Huguenots. They reared six sons and six daughters, the subject of this sketch being the youngest of the former. He was fairly educated at the public schools, and while quite young learned dentistry under the instruction of an older brother at Hartford. He left that city in 1852 and at Peoria, IL., prosecuted his profession until 1857. In that year he moved to Memphis, Tenn., thence a year later to St. Louis; in 1861 to Knoxville, IL., and in the spring of 1862 to Galesburg. Here he dropped dentistry and bought out a drugstore and at once took rank as a successful dispenser of physic. His public spirit is a prominent characteristic.
He was among the promoters of the two prominent hotels of the city, and in the summer of 1885 organized the Galesburg Electric Light and Power Company, with a capital stock of $50,000, and at once became its President. In 1879 he was elected Mayor of the city, the first and only Democrat ever elected to that office in Galesburg. On coming into that position he found a city debt of $76,000. This under his administration was reduced to $50,000, and when he left office at the end of two years, the residue was bonded at a low rate of interest, and the City Treasurer showed a balance in its favor of $38,000. These simple though important facts leave comment upon the successful official career of Dr. Greenleaf wholly unnecessary.
Our subject was married at Peoria, IL., Aug. 15, 1854 to Miss Helen Johnston, a native of Ohio, and has two children—Marianne (Mrs. W. J. Martin), living at Omaha, Neb.; and David, a youth at this writing.
LEVI HAGER, a general farmer, residing on 180 acres of improved land on section 30, Lynn Township, was born in the township in which he is now living on the farm where he now resides, Oct. 27, 1842. He was the youngest son and child of a family of four children—two daughters and two sons. His father, Peter, was formerly a tailor, and later a farmer. His early history is unknown to our subject, he having died when Levi was four years of age. His wife, Catherine Smith, born and reared in Pennsylvania, most likely came to Illinois before she was married. She died in Victoria Township in July 1876.
Our subject resided with his mother most of the time until his marriage, which occurred in Victoria Township at the residence of the bride’s parents, Feb. 4, 1869, Miss Sarah A. Heston being the other contracting party. Her parents were natives of Kentucky and Pennsylvania respectively, and moved to Fayette County, Ohio before their marriage. After their marriage in that county and the birth of three children, they moved to Boone County, Ind., settling near Thorntown, where Mrs. H. of this notice was born, Aug. 24, 1846. She is the youngest of a family of 7 children. She was 9 years old when her parents came to Illinois and located in Victoria Township, where they lived until their death, the father dying in 1875 and the mother in April 1873. They had improved a farm and made a home before their death, in Victoria Township.
Mrs. H. is the mother of two children—Allen A., born Nov. 1, 1869 and Levi, Feb. 21, 1874. Since marriage Mr. and Mrs. Hager have resided on their present farm. Mr. Hager has been Collector of this township, and in politics is a Greenbacker.
Aug. 9, 1863, Mr. Hager enlisted in the Rebellion, joining Co. G., 89th IL. Vol. Inf. He remained with the company all through the campaign, participating in the engagements at Stone River, Chickamauga and Mission Ridge, and later on he became teamster, which occupation he filled until he was honorably discharged at Nashville, Tenn., June 10, 1865. He suffered some from sickness, otherwise he escaped unhurt.
O. HARLAN, city undertaker and funeral director at Galesburg, is a native of the State of Indiana. He was born in Rush County Feb. 1, 1840, and is a son of John G. and Eliza (Gregg) Harlan, the former a native of Ohio, the latter of Kentucky. Mr. Harlan spent his boyhood in Peru, Ind., whither his parents had removed, and where he grew to manhood. At the age of 13 he became apprenticed to the undertaking business in an extensive establishment in Peru, Ind., and completed it as far as he could. He afterward attended embalming schools and visited other large factories, with the view of adding to his already large stock of knowledge in the business.
During the late Civil War he volunteered his services in defense of the Union, and served nearly four years, receiving worthy promotion during his service and an honorable discharge. In 1867 he embarked in business in Peru, Ind., in which he still holds an interest. In 1883 he came here and established a nice business, and has very successfully carried it on since.
Mr. Harlan is a very public-spirited business man and citizen, and contributes liberally to all measures tending to the advancement of the city’s social and industrial growth. He is an active member of the Masonic fraternity, in which he was knighted in Fort Wayne Commandery. He is also a member of the Oriental Consistory, being accepted in the city of Jerusalem, which he had visited in 1858. He is a member of the Foresters, Pilgrim Knights and about all of the temperance societies, G. A. R., Post 45, and was one of the original members of the W. B. Reyburn Post, No. 62, of Peru, Ind. He is a member of the Knights of Pythias, Uniform Rank, and has taken all the knighted ranks in that order and has served as Sir Knight Commander. He is a member of the Order of Red Men, and of the Standard Club of Galesburg.
GIDEON S. HAWKINS, general dealer in groceries, etc., at Oneida, is one of the oldest citizens of Knox County, having come to Galesburg in 1838, when that place was yet a small village, and the country around it almost an unbroken prairie. He was the son of Jacob Hawkins, a resident of Suffolk County, N.Y., where he lived and died. He was of American parentage and English ancestry. The mother, Mary Smith, was born in Setauket Village, Brookhaven Township, Suffolk Co, N.Y., and spent her life in her native county. Her father was an old sea captain and is supposed to be of English descent and parentage.
The father of our subject was a successful farmer. The family consisted of nine children, six sons and three daughters. Mr. Hawkins of this notice was the fifth in order of birth. He received a common school education, and resided at home until 17 years of age, when he set out for New York City. There he engaged as an apprentice to learn the carpenter and joiner trade, under the instruction of Noah Tompkins, a Quaker from White Plains, N.Y. He was with Mr. Tompkins four years, receiving for his labor $25, $30, $35, and $40 respectively for each year’s work, and clothed himself. After he had completed his trade, he worked for Mr. Tompkins from Dec. 21, 1837, till May 1838, when with but $1.50 in money he set out for the then ‘Far West’. He worked his way from Philadelphia across the Alleghenies to Pittsburg, Pa. where he took passage on a boat down the Ohio River to Cincinnati, where he got onto another boat laden with a cargo to St. Louis, Mo. on which he worked his passage to the last named place, where he secured a job unloading the steamer, and thereby secured money enough to get to Rock Island. Thence with a rifle on his shoulder he started out in quest of work, and finally reached Henry County, where he did some carpenter work for George Brandenburg, his first work in this State. He remained in Henry County for some months. In the meantime he built the first house on the original site of Morristown, that county. In October 1838, he struck out for Knox County. Some of his first work was in Knoxville, for old Deacon Chambers, who was one of the first settlers of that place. He afterward went to Henderson Township and worked for Mr. William Riley for two years. Afterward he worked in the village of Henderson for some time, and finally drifted into cabinet-making, which he followed in that place till 1857. In that year, while in Henderson, he became surety for a large stock of goods which he was obliged to take possession of, and he then engaged in merchandising with varied success for five years. He succeeded in paying the indebtedness against the store, and had a small stock of goods left, and liquidated the debt on an 80 acre farm he had contracted for in Sparta Township about the time he took the store. Mr. Hawkins went on the farm then in 1871, and added 40 acres more, operating it for nine years. In 1880 he leased the farm and went to Wataga and one year later came to Oneida and purchased a meat market. Six months later he sold out and engaged in his present business. He has since purchased a good house and lot in this place.
While in Henderson Township, Mr. Hawkins was married in April 1843 to Miss Margaret M. Levalley. She was born in Oswego County, N.Y. and came to Illinois with her parents, who at once settled in Henderson Township, and there died. Mrs. Hawkins is the mother of three children—Mary E., wife of Isaac Rucker, residing in Oneida; John A. resides at home in Oneida; Frank E. married and resides on a farm in Sparta; he was formerly an engineer.
Mrs. Hawkins is a member of the Congregational Church. Mr. Hawkins was Police Magistrate here for two years, but is now out of office. In politics he is a solid Republican, and is a Sweden-borgian in religion. He is a thorough student in philosophy, and is the originator of some new ideas in regard to the cause of the earth’s action and shape and the various forces of the planets in relation to each other, and he is an eloquent advocate of the sciences, whose pursuit proves to him a source of great pleasure and satisfaction.
THOMAS HOUSH, ~ Civil War Vet. ~ a farmer on section 28, Haw Creek Township, was born in Washington County, Ind., Dec. 25, 1829. He is the son of George P. and Polly Housh. They removed from Indiana in 1837. They were farmers, and when they came to Illinois bought and improved land and made a home, on which both of the old people died. The mother died a number of years ago; the father in 1864. This family was of German origin. The father was a soldier in the War of 1812 and in the Black Hawk war.
The subject of this sketch was married to Elizabeth Mowery, Feb. 23, 1851. She is the daughter of John and Elenor Mowery, and was born in Ohio, Oct. 31, 1835. Her father, John Mowery, was born in February 1809 and her mother Aug. 13, 1810. The subject of this sketch and wife are the parents of eight children, as follows: Milton A., born Nov. 25, 1851; Mary, May 22, 1854; John M., Oct. 13, 1857; Grant, April 11, 1863; Charles F., Sept. 8, 1869; and Jennie Pearl, Aug. 24, 1881. Jessie and Willie died in infancy. Mr. H. is raising a girl, Addie M. House, born July 14, 1876. Mrs. Housh died March 20, 1885.
The subject of this notice enlisted in Co. F, 86th IL. Vol. Inf., under Capt. J. L. Burkhalter, Aug. 7, 1862, and served nine months. He took part in the battle of Perryville, Ky., and the raid after Gen. Bragg and his forces, and was mustered out at Quincy, IL., April 1, 1863. He then came home and lived on the farm up to the present. He owns 157 acres of good land, all under fence and has fine improvements. He is a member of the I.O.O. F., also is a member of the G.A.R., and politically is a Republican.
HUGH H. McILRAVY, farmer, on section 35, Copley Township, was born in Magnolia, Carroll County, Ohio, Sept. 21, 1858. His parents were Dr. H.C. and Ruth D. (Herron) McIlravy, natives of Ohio. They were married Nov. 19, 1857 in Ohio. The father studied medicine at New Hagerstown Academy, Ohio, and began practice in 1856 and followed his profession in Ohio until 1867, when he came to Illinois and settled in Victoria village, where he practiced medicine until his death May 1, 1877. The mother died May 6, 1872. They had a family of two children—Hugh H., born Sept. 21, 1858, and Ruth E., born Oct 25, 1865.
The subject of this sketch remained at home until his father’s death. He attended Monmouth College during the terms of 1875-76, and in 1877 went to Ohio and attended school, returning March 8, 1878. He then engaged to work by the month at farming. After working a few months he entered Hedding College at Abingdon, where he studied one year, then engaged in farming, and purchased 176 acres of land on section 35, Copley Township, where he has since remained and is engaged in stock and grain raising.
Our subject was married Feb. 1881, to Miss Viannie Taylor, the daughter of David and Hettie (Parkins) Taylor, of Nova Scotia and Ohio respectively. They have a family of six children—Thomas E., Clara L, Viannie M., William D., Minnie L., and Charles A. Mr. McIlravy has one child--Hugh H. Our subject is a Republican, and with his wife, is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and he is one of the representative men of Copley Township, Knox County, IL.
JOSEPH MASTERS, a retired farmer, on section 3, Sparta Township, was born in the southwest part of England, Jan. 17, 1833. His parents were William and Mary (Cox) Masters, natives of England. They were farmers, and had a family of eight children. They remained in England until their deaths in 1865 and 1843 respectively. The subject of this sketch remained at home until 1854 and received a common school education, and worked on the farm. He came to America in 1854 and settled in Knox County, and purchased 96 acres of prairie land. On this he built a house and barn, fences, and set out an orchard, and remained on the same until 1883. Then he moved onto section 3, where he now lives, and has, since his first purchase, bought 162 acres. He has built three fine farmhouses, which he still owns, and values his land at $80 per acre. He was married in 1855 to Miss Phebe Fooks, a native of England, and daughter of Thomas Fooks.
Mr. and Mrs. Masters have only one child living—William. They also have an adopted daughter—Kate. Mr. Masters is a Republican, and with his wife is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He has held the office of Road Commissioner and School Director, and is one of the solid and substantial men of Knox County.
JOHN PETERSON, merchant, tailor, of the firm of Peterson & Anderson, 29 South Prairie Street, Galesburg, was born in Sweden and came to this country in 1854. His parents, Peter Johnson and Cecilia (Johnson) are yet living in the old country, aged 84 and 82 years respectively. They reared two sons and one daughter, the subject of this sketch being the youngest son. He was educated in his native country and there learned the tailor’s trade. Arriving in Knox County, he stopped at Knoxville a few months and came to Galesburg in 1855. After two years at “jour” tailoring, he began business for himself on the south side of the Public Square in company with Mr. Anderson. Selling out in 1862, he made a trip to Sweden, visited his parents, returned to Galesburg, re-entered the merchant-tailoring business, and in 1869 made another visit to the old country.
In 1870 he was appointed United States Gauger, at Peoria, a position he held till August 1885, when he resigned and returned to Galesburg and to his old business. In addition to his regular business he has for many years handled foreign exchange and ocean passage tickets, as much for the convenience of his countrymen, however, as for the profit to be benefit to be derived therefrom.
Mr. Peterson was married at Galesburg, Jan. 19, 1856, to Miss Malina Johnson, a young lady who happened to come to America in the same ship with him. Their only child is named Jennie A. The family belongs to the Lutheran Church.
Mr. Peterson has not been particularly identified with politics, though he has always been a reliable Republican. He has represented his ward—the 2nd—in the City Council a couple of years, which appears to be the sum of his office-holding, aside from the one he so long and so honorably filled under the General Government. For more than 15 years a gauger at one of the largest whisky distilleries in the world, covering a period of the most rank corruption and frauds known in civilized history; passing through a time when the very nation shook with horror from the exposures of the notorious whiskey rings; a time when people were prepared to be surprised at the arrest of no man connected in any way with the traffic; through those times, and coming out of the service at his own request, not only without taint or blemish, but with the highest order of testimonials, is the record of which any man may feel proud.
DR. ELIJAH F. PURDUM, ~ Civil War Vet ~ a practicing physician of Abingdon since 1876, was born in Montgomery County, Md., Oct. 14, 1839, and is a son of Nathan and Rebecca (Etchison) Purdum. His father was born in Maryland and was descended from the French. His mother was born in the same county as her son, and was descended from the English and Irish.
Our subject went to Guernsey County, Ohio, when eight years of age. He began the study of medicine in 1859 with Dr. Francis Rea of Washington, Ohio; enlisted in July 1861 in Co. F, 30th Ohio Vol. Inf., serving until Oct. 30, 1862, and was discharged for physical disability resulting from typhoid fever. He took a regular course at the Medical College of Ohio, at Cincinnati, graduating in the Class of 1863, July 6. He passed an examination before the Medical Board of Examiners of Ohio, within a few days after graduating with so creditable a record that he was recommended as being qualified to serve as Regimental Surgeon. Not having had the necessary experience, he was disqualified for the position, but was commissioned Assistant Surgeon of the 89th Ohio Vol. Inf. The appointment was a compliment to the young Doctor, as it was unsought, the receipt of his commission and orders being the first intimation he had of the matter. He re-entered the service under his commission, July 24, 1863, and was captured at the battle of Chickamauga, Sept. 20, 1863. His whole regiment was either killed, wounded or captured, and not re-organized again until the following December. After his capture Dr. Purdum was taken to Richmond and held a prisoner at Libby Prison, in that city, for two months and a few days. He was then exchanged, and in December rejoined his regiment. He served in the Army of the Cumberland, 14th Army Corps, under Gen. Stedman. His army record is one his friends are proud of.
He was mustered out June 28, 1865. In October of that year he removed to Abingdon, IL., and spent the winter of 1865-66 in that city, and the following spring took up his residence in the town of Hermon, Knox Co., where he was engaged in practice until 1876, when he returned to Abingdon and has since made that city his home, and has pursued his practice successfully.
Dr. Purdum was married in Washington, Guernsey Co, Ohio, July 4, 1865, to Miss Callie Swan, daughter of Edward and Caroline Swan. Mrs. Purdum was born in Belmont County, Ohio. Her people were natives of Loudon County, Va. Dr. and Mrs. Purdum have one child, a son, Charles W., born in Hermon.
HENRY W. SMITH, ~Civil War Vet ~ is a farmer on section 12, Haw Creek Township, Knox County, IL. He was born in Wyandot County, Ohio, Aug. 9, 1828, and is the son of Abraham and Hester Ann (Winslow) Smith. He is the eldest of a family of six children, the others being named as follows: Daniel, Margaret, Samuel, Ozias and Amy, four of whom are living; Daniel and Amy are dead.
The father of the subject of this notice was a farmer by occupation, and a native of New Jersey. With his wife he removed from Ohio to Knox County in 1850, and resided here up to the time of his decease, March 14, 1853; the mother died in Missouri, March 16, 1880.
Henry W. Smith was married to Amanda McHenry, Aug. 23, 1849. She is the daughter of John and Harriet (Richardson) McHenry, who were the parents of 13 children, Mrs. Smith being the fourth; they were named James, Mary, Eliza, Amanda, Elizabeth, Daniel, Harriet, Carrie A., John, Nancy, and three died in infancy.
Mr. and Mrs. Smith are the parents of seven children—Daniel, born Sept 13, 1850, died July 18, 1851; Abraham, born Feb. 16, 1852, died Feb. 23, 1852; Harriet, born March 27, 1853; John W., born Jan. 1, 1855; Belle, born Jan. 15, 1859; Leefie J., born Aug. 18, 1862; Flora, Sept. 29, 1868.
Mr. Smith enlisted in the 57th IL. Vol. Inf. Co. F., Capt. F. A. Battey, and served until July 1865, and was mustered out at Louisville, Ky, and was discharged and paid off at Chicago, IL. He was with his regiment all the time he served, in its marches, campaigns and battles, and after his discharge, came home and went to farming. He is a Republican and has held the office of School Director. He has 40 acres of land, all under fence, and has good farm improvements and everything in prime condition.
The parents of Mrs. Smith are natives of Pennsylvania. The father served in the late war and is still living. The mother is deceased.
Smith. Among the citizens of noteworthy repute and substantial
worth of character stands the subject of this brief personal history, which we
take pleasure in citing as an example of worthy industry and earnest labor. His
home is situated on section 10, in Maquon Township. His barns, out-buildings and
other improvement are as convenient and well-finished as any in the county. His
residence is neat and handsome, and his farm consists of 130 acres.
W. D. THOMAS, a farmer, residing on section 2, Victoria Township, Knox County, was born in Guernsey County, Ohio, Sept. 20, 1818. His parents were Enoch and Anna (Dilley) Thomas, natives of Pennsylvania and New Jersey respectively. They came to Ohio at an early day and settled in Guernsey County, purchasing 160 acres of land, to which they afterward added about 320 acres. They had a family of 15 children, eight still living: Hannah, now Mrs. Glasner; Lucy A., now Mrs. Campbell; Martha A., now Mrs. A. L. Brooks; Mary C., now Mrs. King; William D.; Enoch J.; James and Ephraim. The parents remained in Ohio until the death of the father in 1857; the mother died July 12, 1882 aged 94 years.
The subject of our sketch remained at home until 22 years old, and assisted on the farm and attended school. After leaving home he went onto a farm of 80 acres, in 1841, and lived on it until 1853. He then sold out, and purchased a woolen-factory, operating the same two years, then sold it and came to Illinois, by wagon, and was on the road 23 days. He settled in Knox County, on section 34, Victoria Township, and purchased 90 acres, where he lived ten years. This he sold and moved onto section 2, same township, where he now lives, and purchased 160 acres, to which he has since added 240, and is engaged in the stock business.
Mr. Thomas was married to Miss Lovina Kinney, a native of Pennsylvania, and daughter of David and Mary (Shafer) Kinney. They were natives of New Jersey and Pennsylvania respectively, and came to Ohio in 1824, settling in Guernsey County.
They had a family of six children, five still living—Peter; Leah, now Mrs. Davis; John; Lovina, now Mrs. Thomas; Margrett, now Mrs. Morris, lives in Des Moines, Iowa. The parents lived in Ohio until their death, in 1860 and 1864 respectively.
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas have a family of 11 children, nine still living: Margrett A., now Mrs. McClanahan, has five children—Edna D., Daniel, Carl D., Franklin, and Bert. John F. married Elizabeth Burch, and they have three children—John D., Ella, and Sanoria. William F. married Eliza Patton and they have two children—Norris and Maud. Mary C., now Mrs. Mills, has three children—Estella, Bert and Bessie. Erastus R. lives in Nebraska; Elwood married Salome Keiser and they have one child—John W. R.; Ruth, now Mrs. Guild, has one child—Ellison, and lives in Nebraska; Abraham L. also lives in Nebraska; Samuel.
Mr. Thomas in politics is a Greenbacker, and he and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is one of the representative and solid men of Victoria Township.
Moses O. WILLIAMSON, one of the proprietors of the Wataga Custom Mills, was born on the Atlantic Ocean, July 14, 1850. His parents were William and Margaret Williamson, and were natives of Sweden, and it was while coming to America the subject of this sketch was born. His parents settled in Sparta Township, Knox Co. His father bought a small farm on section 22, and remained there until his death in 1854; the mother is still living in Wataga. They had a family of six children, who lived to man and womanhood.
M. O. Williamson remained at home until 12 years old, when he went to work on a farm, and continued until 14 years of age. He then came to the village of Wataga to learn the harness trade, and served three years, then worked one year as journeyman. He then bought out one of the partners in the harness business, and was in company with William C. Olson from 1867 to 1879. He then bought out his partner and has since carried on the business. In 1844 he purchased one-third interest in the Custom Mill at Wataga village, and at the present owns one-half interest in the mill. He built a house in 1875, on Faulkner Street, where he now lives.
Mr. W. was married Oct. 18, 1871 to Mary Driggs, a native of Oneida County, N.Y., and daughter of William M. and Millicent (Housted) Driggs. They have two children living—Nellie and Ada.
Mr. Williamson is a Republican, and he belongs to the I.O.O.F. He has held the office of Councilman, Justice of the Peace, Village and Town Clerk, and is one of the solid and substantial men of Knox County. He was Secretary of the Republican Central Committee in 1884.
DARWIN B. DAY, of Walnut Grove Township, is one of the old settlers of Knox County, where he has lived for nearly half a century, having come first to the county in 1837 from Onondaga County, N.Y. He was born in that county Jan. 27, 1810. His father, Thomas C. Day, was a practicing physician, and a native of the same county and State as his son, and lived and died there. He was of New England parentage and ancestry, and was married in Onondaga County, N.Y., to Julia Cappell. She was of parentage of people who had come from Nova Scotia, and she also lived and died in Onondaga County.
Our subject is the oldest of three children, and the only one who now survives. He had a brother and a sister, Elzina, the latter having died unmarried when a young woman 18 years old. In 1880 the brother, David E., died in this county near Galesburg. He had been a successful farmer, and came here in 1838. While he was living in his native county he was married, in December 1830, to Miss Sarah Vorse, who was born in Onondaga County, N.Y. She lived to come to Illinois with her husband, and soon afterward died at Log City, this county, March 19, 1840. She was the mother of two children—Francis P., deceased, and Charles H., a farmer, married and residing in Lyons County, Kan. Mr. Day was the second time married, in Knox County, Oct. 5, 1845, to Miss Narcissa Fugua. She was from Kentucky, having come to Illinois when a child. She died in Sparta Township, Sept. 28, 1873. She was the mother of seven children: David died in the army, after serving one year; John H. is married and carrying on a farm in Nebraska; Norman and Sidney are married and farmers, and both live in Adair County, Iowa; Julia is the wife of L. Aldrich, a mechanic, and they lived in Guthrie Centre, Iowa; Daniel is married and resides in Oneida; Emma is the wife of John Spurgen, a farmer, and resides in Nebraska.
Mr. Day was married in Galesburg to Mrs. Mehitabel (Firkins) Hitchcock, who was born in Cato, Cayuga Co., N.Y., March 13, 1820. Her father, George Firkins, was born and reared in London, England. He came to the United States when a young man, during the French War, with a merchant vessel. He was captured by the French, and after six weeks was surrendered, having in the meantime lost all his goods and everything but his wearing apparel. He then settled at Philadelphia. He was married in Spafford, N.Y. to Lydia Cappell. He had served in the Revolutionary War, and was in the War of 1812. He was a highly educated man and an extensive writer, and served as aid to generals through these wars. He and his wife lived to be very old people, and died in DeKalb County, near Shabbona Grove on the 11th day of May 1861; he was 98 years old. The mother died ten years and a day later, and was then of the same age as her husband when he died. They were the parents of 11 children, six sons and five daughters. Mrs. Day, of this sketch, was the younger but two; all lived to be grown. Three of the latter and one of the sons are yet living; the son in De Kalb County. Mrs. Day was reared and educated in Wolcott, Wayne Co., N.Y. She came, when 19 years of age, with her parents, who first settled in Henderson, Knox County. She was first married to J.P. Hitchcock, who was killed while defending the flag of his country, by the guerrillas, at Frankfort, Ky., Feb. 28, 1865. He was born in Crawford County, Ind., April 21, 1818, and came west when a young man, early in the history of this county, with his parents.
Mr. Day was one of the early settlers of Log City, and helped to build the first saw mill there. He went thence to Knoxville four years later, and has since been a citizen of this county. He came to this place in March 1881. He owns 80 acres of good land where he now lives. He has been a successful farmer, and helped all his children to a start in life.
In the early days he broke a large area of the prairie sod, and added his full quota to the cultivation of the virgin soil. Mrs. Day is a member of the Universalist Church. In politics, Mr. D. was formerly a Republican, but now casts his vote with the Prohibitionists.
SAMUEL G. HOLYOKE was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Sept. 27, 1824, and was fourth son of William and Lucy (Greenleaf) Holyoke, of early Massachusetts families. The senior Mr. Holyoke brought his effects to Knox County in 1837, and here carried on farming and wagon-making. He learned wagon-making while young, and carried it on in Cincinnati several years. He made the first wagon ever constructed in Knox County. The old man died in 1867, aged 68 years, and his widow followed him in 1876.
Samuel G. was educated at Knox College; learned to be a mechanic while a boy and worked at farming; started a wagon-shop in 1842 in Galesburg; carried it on till 1855, and made the first covered carriage ever constructed in this county. In 1871-72 he engaged with G. W. Brown as wheel-man, and, as such invented the machinery for making the kind of wheels now used in the famous Brown Corn-Planter. Since 1878 he has been at the head of the pattern department of G. W. Brown & Co., and is recognized as a workman of extraordinary skill.
He was married in Knoxville Township June 2, 1847 to Miss Amanda L. Hoag, of Otsego, N.Y., and has two sons—James E., collecting agent for the C.,B.& Q. R.R., Hastings, Neb., and Rev. Edward O. Holyoke, in charge of the Baptist Church at Pittsfield, Mass., a position of high rank in that great denomination, and one to which he was called immediately upon leaving the seminary.
The subject of our sketch is a brother of Hon. J. M. Holyoke, who represented Knox County three terms in Illinois Legislature, and is now (1885) Enrolling Secretary of the Colorado Senate.
ARTHUR W. JONES, senior member of the firm of Metcalf Bros. & Jones, dealers in lumber, hardware, agricultural implements, etc., was born in Utica, Oneida Co, N.Y., April 22, 1847. His parents settled in Oneida when he was 11 years of age (see sketch of T. E. Jones), and, giving him the benefit of educational advantages, placed in the High School of that place, where he pursued his studies, living at home till the year 1875.
About this time occurred his marriage, Sept. 16, 1875, at Oneida, with Miss Nettie Muzzy, who was born in Pleasant Mount, Pa., Sept. 26, 1867. (See sketch of A. D. Metcalf for history of Mrs. Jones). At the age of ten years she came to Oneida under the guardianship of her mother, who settled at that place, and with whom she continued through the years of her girlhood up to the date of her marriage. Three children have been born into the home of Mr. and Mrs. Jones—Edward C., Aug. 10, 1876; Albert M., Nov. 14, 1879; and Mabel E., Nov. 28, 1881.
While at home Mr. Jones was engaged under the direction of his father for some length of time, in the stock business, and about the year 1870, in company with his older brother, C. L. Jones, he established an extensive trade in grain, to which three years later he added the lumber trade. This company existed until 1875 when C. L. Jones withdrew and Albert D. Metcalf became a member of the firm. One year later Mr. Jones sold out his interest in the business and joined his two brothers in the hardware business previously spoken of at Oneida. The firm continued under the name of Jones Bros. till 1879, when the two brothers withdrew and their places were filled by Metcalf Bros., the present partners. (see sketch)
Mr. and Mrs. Jones by religious belief are members of the Congregational Church. Mr. Jones takes an interest in both local and public affairs, and in politics is a supporter of the Republican party.
HON. GEORGE CROMWELL LANPHERE, the late Judge Lanphere was United States Commissioner and a distinguished attorney and counselor at law of Galesburg at the time of his death. He was the son of George and Martha (Pierce) Lanphere, natives of Connecticut and Massachusetts, respectively, and of French Huguenot and Saxon-English extraction. He was born in Oneida County, N.Y., June 30 1814. His parents were married in Schoharie County, N.Y., but shortly afterward removed to Delaware County and subsequently to Oneida County. They reared four sons and one daughter, the subject of our sketch being the youngest.
His father was for several years a civil engineer or surveyor, but later on devoted his time to contracting and building. He died in Oneida County, N.Y., in 1834, in the 66th year of his age. His widow remarried, but ere many years she was again alone in the world with her children, and the year 1842 found her in Warren County, IL., whither her son George had preceded her, and where she spent the rest of her life. She died in 1858, in her 83rd year.
At the common and select schools George Lanphere received a limited education, and from the age of 17 to 21 years taught during the winters in his native county. The summer season found him employed at farming. He was about 22 years of age when he began the study of law with Alanson Bennett, of Rome, N.Y. After a few months’ reading, he gathered his worldly effects and, with his wife and child, started overland for the Great West, and the year 1838 found them at Monmouth in Warren County. For their transportation the wagoner charged $50, and to pay it young Lanphere had $17.50. But those were the days when the bright example of “railroad enterprise” and the grinding selfishness of the power of money had not yet obscured humanity. The creditor was satisfied and happy at having improved the opportunity to benefit a fellowman, and the young lawyer was able to “foot” the difference in about a year.
In 1838 Mr. Lanphere was admitted to the bar at Vandalia, IL, being examined before Justices Brown and Lockwood, of the Supreme Court. Monmouth was the scene of his first forensic efforts, and Ivory Quinby, afterward Judge of the Warren County Court for many years, was his first law partner. The partnership lasted up to 1839 when the subject of our sketch was elected Judge of the County Court. Leaving the office of Judge at the expiration of his term, Judge Stephen A. Douglas appointed him Master in Chancery, and he continued the practice of law up to 1847 at Monmouth. At the outbreak of the Mexican War, associated with W. B. Stapp, of Monmouth, he raised a company of volunteers, in which, as First Lieutenant, he was absent about one year. Their company, known as Capt. Stapp’s Mounted Volunteers, was rejected in 1846, but in the following year, in response to the importunities of Lieut. Lanphere, the Secretary of War accepted them, and they went forward to Mexico in 1847, arriving there, however, too late to participate in any of the more important battles. The company was disbanded at Alton, IL., in July 1848, and Lieut. Lanphere returned to Monmouth and resumed his law practice.
About that time he launched fully into politics, and it may be truthfully said that thence forward his services could be fully relied upon by the party of his choice. In 1848 he removed from Monmouth to Galesburg, and the following year, during his absence from the State, the Democrats of Knox County placed him upon their ticket as the candidate for the County Judgeship. The nomination proved the wisdom of their choice so far as party success was concerned, but sometime after his election his opponents discovered what proved fatal to his eligibility. The new constitution of the State, which had been a short time in force, provided that before any person should hold the office of County Judge, such person should have been a resident of the county at least two years prior to the election. Since coming to Galesburg, Mr. Lanphere had been engaged in the drug business, and, not anticipating that he should be called upon to run for any office so soon after coming into the county, much less to fill one, the new constitution had not been examined by him. So his position was, in law, scarcely debatable, and a writ of quo warranto was laid and his office declared vacant. However, the success of his opponents was short-lived. They at once re-nominated their defeated candidate, and Lanphere, who had by this time been fully two years in the county, beat him by a much larger majority than in the first instance. Judge Lanphere was appointed United States Commissioner in 1857, and held the office continually till his death. He was always an ardent Democrat, and from the age of 15 up to 56 an active and persistent worker for the success of that party. He was one of the prime movers in the establishment of the Central Military Tract Railroad (now the C., B. & Q.), was a member of the first Board of Directors, and for some years Secretary of the Company.
In speaking of Judge Lanphere’s public career, we should not forget to mention a fact that reflects credit upon his already good name, and attests the high standard of his manhood. In 1854 President Pierce appointed him to the Postmastership at Galesburg. When Mr. Buchanan came into power, and the subsequent difficulty developed between him and Senator Douglas, a number of Illinois Postmasters were notified that the tenure of their official positions rested upon their denunciation of Mr. Douglas. As is well known, many of Mr. Douglas’ whilom friends did not stand by him and hence received their reward in renewed commissions, but the Postmaster of Galesburg, suffice it to say, stood by his principles and consequently lost his office.
The Judge was a Mason, and in religion a Swedenborgian. He was married at Boonville, Oneida Co., N.Y., Oct. 20, 1835, to Miss Matilda G. Kent, with whom he had just celebrated his golden wedding. Of the nine children born to Judge and Mrs. Lanphere we have the following brief memoranda; Ione, wife of Frank E. Short, of Kansas City; Sabina, wife of O. F. Price, Attorney for the C., B. & Q. R.R.; Jane, wife of W.H. Wood, a merchant of Wataga, IL.; Mary, wife of J. E. Shears, of Ottumwa, Iowa; George H., a railroad man at Kansas City, and Frank E., conductor on the U. P. Railroad.
Judge Lanphere died while this work was being prepared and after this sketch was written. His loss was greatly felt, and his death mourned by the entire community.
TAYLOR LINN, among the highly respected and estimable citizens of Knox County, and one of its leading farmers, may be reckoned the subject of this brief biography. He has been successful in the prosecution of agricultural pursuits, and is known throughout the entire section of country as a substantial man and a worthy member of the community.
Mr. Linn of this writing, came to Knox County in 1875 from Mercer County, IL., and settled in Rio Township where he has since lived. He is the owner of 200 acres, only a part of which is tillable, but of which he makes the best possible use. He was born in Morrow County, Ohio, April 1, 1849, and when nearly seven years of age his father removed to Mercer County, where the little boy lived an inmate of his father’s home until he attained the years of discretion. He received a common-school education, and wisely, instead of following in the wake of so many misguided American youth, he heeded the injunction, “Don’t leave the farm, boys,” and has always pursued that vocation.
He was united in marriage in Knoxville, with Miss Elizabeth Henderson, who was a native of Knox County, and the fruit of their union has been the birth of one child—Almon, who was left motherless Jan. 1, 1882, by the death of Mrs. Linn in Rio Township, where she was buried.
Mr. Linn formed a second matrimonial alliance in Rio Township, Feb. 13, 1884, with Miss Lizzie H., daughter of Samuel Junk of that township. She was born in Knox County, May 18, 1859, and is a devoted wife and mother, esteemed and respected by all. Mr. Linn takes an active interest in outside affairs, and is a member of the I.O.O. F. In politics he is a Republican, supporting and voting for that party.
JOHN MANGION, one of the most esteemed citizens of Sparta Township, residing on section 34, was born June 20, 1808, in County Limerick, Ireland. He was the son of David and Bridget (Morsey) Mangion, and came to America in 1850. He landed in New York City and remained in the Empire State, working on a farm, for five years, then came to Galesburg, IL., proceeding thence to Mercer County, where he engaged in farm work for two years, and then rented a farm near Shanghai, which he managed for three years. At the expiration of that time he came to this township and purchased the 40 acres where he now resides, and to which he subsequently added 130 acres.
Our subject was united in marriage in February, about the year 1845 or 1846, with Miss Mary Calahan, and became the father of nine children, viz: Bridget, Mary, John, David, Kate, Thomas, Michael, a second Mary, and Johanna; of these two only are living—Thomas and Michael.
Mr. Mangion is a member of the Roman Catholic Church, and politically a Democrat. He is an upright, honest man and a good citizen, and possesses in a marked degree the confidence and esteem of all who know him.
ASA A. MATTESON, Vice-President of the First National Bank of Galesburg, IL., Secretary and Treasurer of the College City Street Railway Co., and President of the Galesburg Public Library, is a native of Warren County, IL., having been born near Berwick, Oct. 24, 1837. His father was Elon and his mother Ann (Ogden) Matteson. The parents of Mr. Matteson were married in Oneida County, N.Y., and in 1836 emigrated to Illinois. The senior Mr. Matteson was a farmer by occupation and died at his home in Warren County in 1845, aged 44 years; his widow lived to attain the age of 73, and died in Galesburg in 1883. The Mattesons came originally from Holland and the Ogdens from England, both families being among the pioneers of New England. Elon and Ann (Ogden) Matteson were natives, respectively, of Vermont and York State, and reared five sons and one daughter, the latter and three of the sons surviving at this writing.
Mr. Asa A. Matteson was educated at the Galesburg schools, studied law with T. G. Frost, and was admitted to the bar in 1860. He remained in the office of his preceptor until in 1865, when he formed a partnership with Judge Tunnicliff, at Macomb, and there practiced law ten successive years. Abandoning the legal profession, in 1875, he returned to Galesburg and became actively identified with the interests and management of the First National Bank. The stockholders of that institution elected him one of the Directors, and in 1877 he became Vice-President. During the time since he has continuously held the position of Vice-President, and also, a portion of the time, of Bookkeeper and of Cashier. This banking house relied upon him as a kind of “general utility man.” In the absence of any employee or officer, from Assistant Bookkeeper up to President, Mr. Matteson, as a sort of reserve force, has been called into requisition. In 1883, however, he decided to take a less active part in the bank, and, as an evidence of good faith, turned his attention to farming. As he continued his residence in the city, the presumption is fair that his agricultural enterprise constitutes but an incident.
Mr. Matteson was one of the projectors and organizers of the College City Street Railway, and has since held the position of Secretary and Treasurer of the company.
December 6, 1865, at Galesburg, Mr. Matteson was married to Miss Helen M. Gardner, whose family came from Herkimer County, N.Y., in 1837. Their children are named respectively Frank, Fred, Gracie and Ralph. Yet young in years, he has already achieved enviable success, his enterprising spirit proving not only a benefit to himself, but also to the community.
ALBERT D. METCALF, and SAMUEL J. METCALF, members of the firm of Metcalf Bros. & Jones, dealers in hardware, cutlery, guns, lime, farm implements, and stone, are the subjects of this notice. In connection with the above business, they hold an interest in the lumber yards of Oneida, and their previous history is stated as follows: They came to Oneida in 1861, under the care of their parents, Samuel and Hannah Elizabeth (Bruce) Metcalf, who were natives of New York and Vermont respectively. They were of American parentage, the father of English and the mother of Scotch ancestry. The parents of these people came west and settled in Knox County early in life. They were united in marriage at Galesburg, and immediately after settled in Knoxville on a farm. This they worked, cultivating and improving it till the year 1856, when they came to Ontario Township and here purchased a farm of 160 acres, one and one-half miles from Oneida. In this section of the country the father continued to reside till his death, which took place in November 1856, and which left bereaved a wife and two children—Albert D. and Samuel J. Later in her widowhood the mother united in marriage with A. N. Bancroft, who died at Galesburg in 1880, where the mother still lives, having reached the age of 56 years. The birthplace of Albert D. was in the vicinity of Knoxville, and the date of his birth Nov. 20, 1852, while Samuel is five years younger, being born in Knoxville, Jan. 1, 1857.
The two brothers, having many tastes in common grew to boyhood and manhood in the home of their mother, attending in their earlier years, the graded schools of Oneida, and later, during their more advanced years, Knox College, Galesburg. From this institution Albert graduated in 1875. The same year he entered into partnership with Arthur W. Jones, and is at present a member of the firm as it now exists. Together they established a grain and lumber market at Oneida, and the company was known as Metcalf & Jones. Ten months later they dissolved partnership, and Mr. Jones, taking the grain department, yielded into the hands of Mr. Metcalf the lumber interest. In the year 1876, and during the month of May, his brother joined him in this business, and together they conducted the lumber trade under the style of Metcalf Bros. This firm continued till 1879, and during this interval Mr. Jones went out of the grain trade and established a hardware store. In 1879 Metcalf Bros. consolidated their lumber trade with Mr. Jones’ business, and the firm name was changed to Metcalf Bros. & Jones, by which coalition an extensive business is carried on. At this time they estimate their annual trade at $50,000, and, though young merchants in years, they are rapidly winning golden opinions from the people of the community by their enterprise and attention to business.
Albert D. Metcalf was married May 4, 1876 at the residence of the bride’s sister, to Miss E. J. Muzzy, who was born at Mount Pleasant, Pa., June 20, 1855, and who came to Illinois with her mother, who was a widow, having lost her husband in the late war while she was yet a young woman. The little family settled in Oneida, where the mother now resides with her daughter, Mrs. Albert Metcalf.
Samuel J. Metcalf was married in the city of Galesburg Oct. 20, 1879, to Miss Carrie A. Brooks, who was born in Jacksonville, IL., in 1859, and whose father is an agricultural-implement dealer, doing a good business in Galesburg. She attended school in that city, beginning about the year 1875, where she remained until her marriage. Of this union one son is the issue—Irving B., born May 30, 1884.
Both brothers and their wives are active and useful members of the Congregational Church at Oneida, the doctrines of which faith they vigorously support and exemplify in their daily lives. In politics both uphold the Republican party; the junior is Alderman of this city, and is the youngest member of that body.
JOHN W. OLSON, senior member of the firm of Olson Bros. at Maquon, is a son of Olof and Jennie Olson. The parents were born in America; married and settled in Knoxville, where the father died in December 1862. Mrs. Olson died in Kansas. She met her death by being caught in a cyclone. They had four children, three of whom lived to maturity. Their names are William, John W., Emma, and Olof.
John W. was born in Knoxville, April 22, 1857. He received a common-school education, and lived there till he came to Maquon, in 1871, where he has since made his home, with the exception of one year in Elmwood. His father was a cabinet-maker, and John learned the wagon-maker’s trade, which he still follows. He formed a partnership with his brother Olof, under the firm name of Olson Bros., in the spring of 1884, and located in Maquon, where they still continue to carry on a good business.
He was married in Knoxville, Feb. 28, 1883, to Addie Green, daughter of George and Jannie Green. Mrs. Olson was born in Peoria, Feb. 28, 1864. They have one child—George P. Mr. Olson is a member of the Odd Fellows. In politics he is a Democrat.
Mrs. Agnes McKie.
In selecting a site for a home which shall include both
convenience and fertility of soil, none could be better chosen
than most of the farms in Knox County, and among these the lady
of whom this personal history is written claims one of the best.
It lies on section 4, in Copley Township, and was left her as a
legacy by her deceased husband, Thomas McKie.
GEORGE RUNKLE. Mr. Runkle is a farmer on section 8, Galesburg Township, and was born on the 2nd of February 1844, in Knox County, IL. He is the son of Eldert Runkle, a prominent pioneer of this county. He was a native of New York State, where the latter was born in August 1803, his decease taking place June 15, 1862, in Knox County.
Mr. Runkle’s father came to Illinois in 1834, and first located in Knoxville. He was a millwright by calling, but commenced and followed farming after his arrival in Illinois. In 1833 he married Miss Nancy Bowen, who was born in 1808 and still survives her husband. To the marriage six children were born, viz: Elizabeth, James, Mary H., Lucy G., George, and Frank. Of these, the subject of this biography married Miss Mattie E. Ferris on the 15th of February 1871. The ceremony was performed by Rev. L. Pratt. This lady was born on the 3rd of May 1848, in Knox County, IL. Her parents were Nathan and Currance A. (Winegar) Ferris. Her father was born in 1790, in Herkimer County, N.Y. Her parents’ marriage took place in 1827, the ceremony being performed by Rev. Mr. Culver. The mother was born in 1805 and was a native of Washington County, N.Y. In 1850 the father died at Weaverville, Trinity County, Cal. His death was occasioned by a kick from a horse. They first came to Illinois in 1837 and had eight children—Sylvanus S., Chauncy G., Nathan O., Samuel, Horace F., Sallie A., James H., and Mattie E.
George Runkle by his marriage with Miss Ferris has three children—William J., born April 28, 1874; Currance A., born April 7, 1879; Emily L., born Oct. 23, 1881. Mr. Runkle’s farm consists of 100 acres of well-improved land, on which is a desirable dwelling-house 24 X 20 feet. He is interested in breeding Holstein and Short-horn cattle, and has a few sheep on his farm.
During the Civil War he enlisted in the 100-day service, joining Co. D, 139th IL. Vol. Inf., which was mustered into the service in May and served until October of the same year. He was stationed at Cairo. Our subject is a good Republican and warmly espoused the cause of the Government in the Civil War. He is a highly respected member of his community, an industrious worker, and is a prominent member of the A.O.U.W. at Galesburg, filling the position of Guide in his Lodge.
DEWITT SMITH, a successful farmer and respected citizen of this county, residing on section 13, Maquon Township, was born in Pennsylvania, Nov. 19, 1834, and was quite young when his parents moved to this county. He has lived in Knox County since that time, with the exception of five months in Fulton County. In 1859 he went to California, where he spent three years, or rather two years there, one year en route to and from. He met with fair success.
He was married in Salem Township, this county, to Phoebe Day; they have one child living—Victor.
His parents were V.R. and Angeline (Catlin) Smith, and hers Aaron and Permilla (Randall) Day, natives of Ohio and Massachusetts respectively. They settled in Clermont County, Ohio, where he still resides. She is dead.
Mr. Smith has been Road Commissioner six years. In politics he is a Republican. He is the owner of 80 acres in Maquon Township, the most of which is tillable.
THOMAS D. STAFFORD. There are many extensive and important manufactories in and around the busy and thriving city of Galesburg, prominent among which is the brick manufactory of Stafford & Wood. The senior member of this well-known and popular firm is Thomas D. Stafford, subject of this biographical notice. He was born in Essex County, N.Y., May 14, 1816, and remained with his parents until he attained the age of manhood, in the meantime working on the farm and attending the common schools. On attaining his majority he engaged to learn the brick-making business and has followed the same for a livelihood ever since.
In 1841 Mr. Stafford commenced to make brick on his own account, in Rochester, Sangamon Co, IL., where he was engaged for one year. He then removed to Springfield, remained two years and returned to Rochester, where he resided until the spring of 1856, and then came to Galesburg. On his arrival in that city he immediately began the making of brick, in a yard which he established, and from which the present firm, as stated, sprang. Their business is an extensive one and they have manufactured over 1,000,000 per annum for the last 30 years.
Mr. Stafford was married to Miss Polly M. Fisher in 1837. She died Jan. 17, 1873, after having borne her husband three children—Eliza J., Cecelia L., and Ellen M. The first born married George W. Flag, and died Dec. 2, 1876, leaving four children to the care of her husband—Lillie, Thomas I., Alva, and Gilbert; Ellen M. departed this life May 19, 1881; Cecelia is the happy wife of N. C. Woods.
The second matrimonial alliance of our subject occurred Aug. 11, 1873, at which time Mrs. Ann Eliza Dutcher, the widow of G. M. Dutcher, became his wife. She had three children by Mr. Dutcher, named Hattie A., born Aug. 18, 1850; Deyo W., born Dec. 11, 1854, and Carrie M., born June 1, 1857. Hattie A. was married Dec. 1, 1869 to Thomas G. Brooks, a harness-maker doing business in Appleton City, Mo. Their offspring are as follows: Bert D., born March 16, 1871; Roy D., born Nov. 23, 1872; Essie died Jan. 24, 1880, aged 2 years, 3 months and 12 days; Blythe O., born November 1879; Alta G. born March 18, 1884, and an infant daughter, born June 5, 1886 (unnamed). Deyo was married May 1, 1876, to Miss Alma H. Brown; one child was born to them, viz., Roy H., April 5, 1877. Carrie M. was married Sept. 17, 1874 to Frank H. Slater, a tinner by trade, residing in Creston, Iowa; they have one child living—Louie, born Aug. 9, 1877; Mamie, the eldest, was born Aug. 11, 1875 and died Oct. 17, 1877.
Mr. Stafford is the proprietor of two acres of land in Galesburg, on which he has a fine residence two stories in height. Aug. 6, 1870, he lost his eyesight—a misfortune which has never been repaired, and one of the more keenly felt as Mr. Stafford enjoyed to the fullest extent the sight of associates and friends. In all these afflictions Mr. Stafford is sustained by the consolation of religion, both he and his wife being members of the Universalist Church.
The Stafford family in America is traced back to the time of the landing of the Mayflower, in which vessel the ancestors of our subject came from England, and the subject of this notice in character and reputation has well sustained the dignity of his origin. He came to Illinois in 1840 and in politics is a Republican. He has always been enterprising and public spirited, and worthy of being designated as a highly esteemed member of society.
JOSEPH TORLEY, one of the popular and successful merchants and substantial citizens of Wataga is personified in the subject of this personal history. From his introductory launch onto the wide sea of commerce, he has received the hearty patronage of the people of that vicinity, who are quick to recognize uprightness and native force of character. He came in Illinois from Iowa in the year 1860, and since that time has been occupied in mercantile transactions.
Mr. Torley was born in Germany, May 17, 1843, and was the son of Frederick and Caroline (Strachwash) Torley, who came to the United States in February 1848 and settled in Burlington, Iowa. They were farmers, and at the time of their coming purchased 90 acres of land, which they sold in 1863 and came to Warren County, where they lived until 1868, when they sold out again and moved to Oquawka, and there lived from 1871 to 1884. Leaving that town, they removed to West Point, Iowa, where they now live a retired life.
Their family consisted of eight children, of which the subject of this sketch is the sixth in order of birth. His younger days were spent on the farm and in school, and he removed from home when 20 years of age and apprenticed himself to learn the blacksmith’s trade. At this he worked for several years, then in 1870 became engaged in selling agricultural implements at Oquawka. He continued in Henderson County until 1885, then sold out and removed to Wataga, where he engaged in mercantile pursuits. He carried a general stock of goods, and estimates his patronage at a high figure.
The subject of our sketch, in 1870, took a life companion to his heart and home, in the person of Miss Maggie Vatter, a native of Henderson County, IL. Three children have come to gladden their home, who bear the names of Margaret, Ida, and Joseph.
Mr. Torley is a man of worth and ability, respected by all who know him. He and his wife attend the Methodist Episcopal Church, by which organization they are held in high esteem. He belongs to the I.O.O.F. and is Democratic in political belief.
BENEDICT WAINRIGHT, one of the influential and successful farmers of Chestnut Township, residing on section 3, is the subject of whom the facts recorded in this personal history are written. Mr. W. was born in this township, Nov. 25, 1856, and was the son of Daniel and Eliza Jane (Cramer) Wainright, both natives of the State of Ohio. The father opened his eyes upon life May 4, 1829, and the mother was born Sept. 9, 1832. The matrimonial connection of Mr. and Mrs. Wainright, senior, resulted in the addition of six children to the family circle, as follows: Vincent, who married Frances Howk, in the eastern part of this State; McGuire, who took to wife Miss Susan Coe; Joseph, who united in marriage with Derinda F. Mowry; and Benedict, our subject; Sarah Eliza is an inmate of the parental household, and Clara L. died at the age of 18 months.
Benedict Wainright was reared on his father’s farm, where he grew to the age of 22 years, at which time he commenced attendance at Knox College, where he continued for two terms. Soon after leaving school he espoused Miss Mimmie Hall, Nov. 29, 1883, who was the daughter of John and Salome (Freemold) Hall, the former a native of Germany, in which country he was born March 16, 1825, and the latter Aug. 18, 1834. The brothers and sisters of Mrs. Mimmie Wainright number three, and are as follows: Harmon, who died May 13, 1882, leaving a wife, Alma (Hartsook) Hall; Carl, who died aged four months, and Emma, wife of David Bearmore. Mrs. Wainright is the second child in order of birth and was born June 21, 1860.
Mr. Wainright is successful in his occupation as a farmer and has large herds of common-blooded cattle. He is an industrious, energetic member of society, an agreeable neighbor, and Democratic in political belief. Into their pleasant little home one daughter has been born—Bessie V., the date of birth being Dec. 3, 1884.
Throughout his district Mr. Wagoner is regarded as a
representative farmer of the old school. He resides on section
20, Galesburg township, where his land is to be found in an
advanced state of cultivation. He was born in Madison County,
New York, in 1830, and came to Illinois in 1856, locating first
at Peoria. For some time he worked on the Peoria and Oquawka
Railroad as an engineer, an occupation which he subsequently
followed for 25 years on the C. B. & Q. R. R. While serving in
this responsible capacity, he was considered a very careful
hand, and never met with any serious accident while on the road.
His parents were Henry and Mary (Lane) Wagoner, natives of
Pennsylvania. The mother was born in 1800 and the father either
in 1798 or 1799. He died about the year 1835, in the State of
New York; his wife's decease took place in Peruville, Tompkins
county, New York. By the marriage there were ten children -
Nancy and Catherine, living; Myra, Elizabeth and Effaline, who
died of cholera in 1832; Hiram, Barney, Jane, Caroline, and
great-grandfather Aaron N. Phelps was a Colonel in the War of
1812. His son Ronald Aaron Noble Phelps was born on 9 Sep 1819
in Westfield, Massachusetts. Noble, as he was referred to in
contemporary accounts, was accompanied to Galesburg among a
group of 25 original settlers by his wife Sarah Adams Phelps and
his mother Clarrissa Root Phelps. According to the Knox College
history, "On June 2, the first colonists arrive in a wagon train
and settle temporarily at Log City [near current Lake Storey],
three miles northwest of the present site of Galesburg." At the
time of Mr. Phelps' arrival in Illinois, the amount of his
worldly possessions at that time was enough to buy a box stove
and a cow, valued at $30. (History of Knox County, p 840).
The Best Farm in Knox County, Illinois
one of the retired farmers of Knox County, is the occupant of a
handsome residence on section 24, Copley Township, and ranks
high among the good men of the county - not only morally good,
but possessing the enterprise, perseverance and integrity which
are the attributes of all citizens to whom the term is properly
applied. He was born in Connecticut, 10 October 1812, and his
parents are Samuel and Esther (Blakesly) Gaines, natives of
Connecticut. The father died in September 1834, in Delaware
County, New York, while the mother came to Illinois in 1842, and
lived with her children a number of years, her death occurring
in 1862. They had a family of eight children, four of whom are
still living - Austin, Linda, Nelson and Harriet; those deceased
are Esther, Clarissa, Sylvester and Elmira.
Samuel K. Pedrick.
Mr. Pedrick's orchard and grounds are located on section 33,
near the city limits of Abingdon, Cedar Township. This gentleman
is a native of Circleville, Ohio, and was born on the 7th of
August, 1823. While attending the district schools, he was
employed on his father's farm until attaining his majority. At
the age of 33 he married Miss Harriet W. Kirk, the ceremony
being performed in McDonough County, Illinois. HIs wife was born
17 June 1830, and was a native of Green County, Kentucky. She
came to Illinois with her parents in 1834, the family locating
west of Macomb. She remained here until her marriage. To this
desirable union were born four children _ Nancy E., 21 April
1858; William L., 21 April 1859; John K., 11 December 1862;
Samuel E., was born 21 July 1868 and died 5 July 1872.
Washington Parker, deceased, an early settler in
Truro Township, was born in Hampshire County, Virginia, 30 March
1819. He was a son of David Parker, but a lad of seven years
when his father died, and at that tender age obliged to earn his
own living. He lived for a time in Pennsylvania, and in 1840,
removed to Ohio and located in Marion County, where he found
employment at farming. At that place he met and married Miss
Sqallie Morrel, 4 January 1849. Miss Morrel was of German
lineage and born in Marion County, Ohio, the date there of being
3 July 1824. She was the daughter of Samuel and Rosanna (Staley)
Morrel, pioneers of Marion County, the former a native of
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