Joseph W. Adcock, an agriculturist of Kelly Township, is of ancestry and antecedents of Southern origin.  Edmund Adcock, his father, was a pioneer of Warren County of 1833.

 The latter, Edmund, was born November 23, 1800, in Buckingham Co., Va., and was the son of Joseph and Susan Cason Adcock.  His parents were both members of families of Virginia origin and he was reared to the age of manhood in his native county and in Kanawha County, whither his parents removed when he was in his youth.  In the county last named, Edmund was married to Cynthia Christian.  She was a native of Kanawha County, and her father, Robert Christian, had a record as a brave soldier in the war of the Revolution.  The marriage referred to took place March 13, 1823.  The newly married people settled in the same county and were residents until 1828.  In that year they removed to Indiana and located in Crawford County, where they remained two years.  In the fall of 1830 they set out for Illinois.  The family then included the father, mother and three children.  A neighbor of theirs in Indiana had made a prospecting tour to Knox County, and on his return the Adcock family resolved to come to Illinois with him.  He had a team and they made the trip together.  It was fall when they arrived, and Mr. Adcock secured a claim on section 3 in what is now Henderson Township, Knox County.  He obtained an entire quarter section and built a house for the temporary accommodation of his family.  It was the most primitive kind of a structure and covered with clapboards obtained from trees by a process called “riving, “ a term which has the same significance at present though the application in this locality is considerably different.  The floor was made of puncheon.  In this the household lived through the Black Hawk War.  It was located within a mile of the fort.  There were then only a few families in the neighborhood, and the people would frequently become alarmed at the sight of a stray Indian, or rumors of their depredations would put them in such a state of fright that, in the early times preceding the contest referred to. They would repair to the fort for protection.  One occasion, Wm McMurtry and Edmund Adcock, who were in the block-house with their families, went out to attend to their stock and agreed not to remain longer than to perform the service which took them out.  They also promised not to discharge their fire-arms unless they saw Indians, but the sight of a quantity of squirrels put the last stipulation out of their remembrances, and they fired at the little animals.  The shooting was rapid and alarmed their friends at the fort.  The men remaining there hastily gathered their arms and ammunition and started out one by one, without order or system, to the rescue, leaving not a gun in the fort for the defense of the women and children.  Happily their fears proved groundless.

            In the spring of 1833, Mr. Adcock sold his property and came to Warren County.  He located on the northwest quarter of section 27 in township12, range 1.  His brother Henry had previously purchased the land and the tenant lived on the place two years.  He then made a claim on the southeast quarter of the same section and removed to a small log cabin which had already been erected on the place.  A few years later it was abandoned for a new dwelling of rather aristocratic pretensions for that period.  The latter was a double hewed-log house and was their residence for some years, or until improved circumstances enabled them to build a frame house.  This was the home as long as the father lived.  His death occurred May 7, 1869.  At the time he was the owner of the south half of section 27, about 50 acres of which were tillage.  The wife died October 26, 1865.  They had only the three children, with whom they removed to Illinois.  The oldest was a daughter, named Cynthia Elizabeth.  She married John McMullen, and survived her marriage only a few weeks.  Joseph and Robert J. are twins.  They were born January 23, 1826, in Kanawha Co., VA.  They were but four years old when they removed with their parents to Illinois.  The brother of Mr. Adcock, Henry,  is a resident of Tompkins Township.  The latter was 7 years old when his father and mother took up their residence in Warren County.  Everything was in its primitive condition and there were no schools, consequently the parents gave their sons such education as they could with in the home.  After Mr. Adcock had grown to be quite a youth, there was school established about three miles distant, which he attended, but it was not of the character of the free schools of to-day, as it was instituted by the pioneers to secure a little instruction for their children, and they willingly bore all the expense themselves.

            Mr. Joseph Adcock was married August 30, 1849, to Mary Elizabeth McMurtry.  She was born in Crawford Co., Ind., September 26, 1827, and is the daughter of Hon. William and Ruth Champion McMurtry.  Her father was native of Kentucky and settled in Knox Co., IL, in 1829.  He rose to distinction in State affairs, and was elected Lieutenant-Governor with Augustus French, in the second term which was served by that gentleman, in November, 1848.  He was a candidate at the time of the first election of Governor French, when the successful nominee was Mr. Wells.  Hon. William McMurtry died at his home in Knox County, in 1875.

            After the date of his marriage, Mr. Joseph Adcock located on a part of the homestead of his father, a portion of which he had given to him.  During the first year, he lived with the family, and then removed to a log cabin and commenced the life of a true pioneer.  This was the home of himself and his wife for several years, when they removed to the frame house which his family has since occupied.  He is now the owner of 459 acres.  Eight of children born to himself and wife are still living.  William resides on section 35 in Kelly Township; Edmund follows the legal profession in Chicago; Cynthia Elizabeth married Edwin Ezekiel Terpenning, son of John Peck  and Mindwell Smith Terpenning, who is a farmer on section 3 in Cold Brook Township; Robert J., an attorney –at-law, lives in Monmouth; Ruth F. Married C. F. Barnett, a farmer on section 18, Sparta Township, Knox co., Ill.  Lucy and Mary live at home with their parents.

            In political faith and connection, Mr. Adcock is a Democrat.





William Adcock, clerk of Kelly Township, and a farmer on section 35, is one of the prominent and influential citizens of his township and county and a  member of the local Board of Education since 1877. He is the oldest son of Joseph and Elizabeth McMuirtry Adcock, was born in the year of 1850, in the township where he is and always has been a resident, of a family that has been largely identified with the first settlement and subsequent development of the country.  His grandfather, Edmund Adcock, was among the very first, if not the first, white man that settled in this section of the country, having been located with his family in Henderson Grove, near the Knox and Warren County line, in the year 1829 or ’30, two or three years before the Black Hawk War.  William McMurtry, his grandfather on his mother’s side, was for 30 years a member of the State Government, having held the offices of Lieutenant-Governor, State Senator, Representative and Penitentiary Commissioner during the building of the State Penitentiary at Joliet, Ill.; also Colonel of the 102d Reg’t of Ill. Vols. In the late war.  His father, Joseph is a noted land surveyor and for several years was County Commissioner.  His brothers are Edmund, a prominent lawyer in Chicago, Ill., and Robert, a practicing attorney at Monmouth.  Mr. Adcock was brought up to a full understanding of the business of a farmer, and after receiving such education as the common schools afforded, became a student at Abingdon College, whence he was graduated with the degree of A.B., in 1871.  for some years he operated as a teacher through the winter seasons and gave his attention to farming the remainder of the year.  Of late he has devoted his time exclusively to agriculture.  He is a Democrat in political belief and connections and has been a delegate to several County, State, and Congressional Conventions that have been held since he reached his majority.  He purchased the farm of which he is the owner in 1877.   It comprises 250 acres of good land, in first class condition, and the proprietor is occupied in the business of mixed husbandry.

            The union in marriage of Mr. Adcock with Mary J. Henderson, occurred July 13, 1876.  their children are Edmund, David, and Mary S.  Mrs. Adcock was born in the year 1858, in the town of Henderson, Knox Co., Ill.  Her parents, David Henderson, a prominent citizen and recently member of the Board of Supervisors of Knox Co., Ill., and Sophia Davis Henderson, were pioneers of Knox County, whither they came soon after the termination of Black Hawk War.  They were natives respectively of Pennsylvania and Indiana, and are still living in Knox County.


  Andrew H. Black, a gentleman of push and energy among the numerous citizens of his vocation, that of a farmer, resides on section 14, Tompkins Township. He was born in Greene Co., Ohio, June 16, 1823, his parents being William and Elizabeth (George) Black, natives of Virginia and Pennsylvania respectively. the parents were married in Greene County, Ohio, and there the father followed the occupation of a farmer until 1838, when he came to this State (IL), and located at Monmouth, this county, and where he remained for about three years. He was consequently a pioneer of this county, and was here to see the broad and uncultivated prairie lands in their original condition. He remained at Monmouth for the time stated and then moved to Henderson County, where, near Olean, he purchased 80 acres of land. Here he located with his family and was engaged in his chosen vocation until his death, which occurred in 1858. His wife survived him until 1885. Their family comprised nine children, five sons and four daughters.
Andrew H. Black, whose name stands at the head of this notice, was the second in order of birth of his parents' children, and remained on the old homestead, assisting his father in the labors of the farm, until he attained his 28th year. At this age in life, he left the parental roof-tree and went forth to battle against the trials of life alone, hoping to procure a competency. He at first rented land, and for three years was engaged in farming in that manner, when he purchased a farm of his own, consisting of 80 acres, in close proximity to the village of Olean. On this land he located and passed his years in labor until 1864. He then sold it and came to Kirkwood, and purchased a lot and residence there, where he resided for two years, when he sold his village property and bought 60 acres on section 14, Tompkins Township, on which he removed and there resided until 1880. During this year he rented his farm and again moved into Kirkwood, where he lived four years. At the expiration of that time he moved back on his farm and has resided there ever since. He is engaged in general farming, having been brought up to that calling, and following it the major portion of his life is consequently possessed of that knowledge of agriculture which enables him to make a success of it.
The marriage of Mr. Black to Miss Martha Rankin took place January 16, 1851. She was a native of Indiana, where she was born, May 27, 1832. Her parents were Joseph and Lutitia (Brown) Rankin, natives of Ohio and Pennsylvania respectively. (Note from Foxie: This means they were first from Pa. and then from Ohio.) They came to this State, IL, in 1837 and purchased land in Henderson County, IL, and lived there until the latter's death, in 1847 (meaning Mrs. Rankin died). Mr. Rankin went to Kansas after his wife's death, and was there engaged in farming until November 01, 1878, when he crossed the river to meet his companion in the land of the hereafter.
In politics, Mr. Andrew Black is a strong advocate of the principles of the Republican party, with which party he always casts his vote. he and his wife are the parents of one child---Melissa, who is the wife of James Riggs, and by whom she has had four children, who have been named, Cora, Edna, Hugh O. and Albert G. Mrs. Black is a member of the United Presbyterian church, with which she untied at the age of 18 years, and has since been a consistent member in good standing. She first united with that branch of the church known as Secreders, but joined with the union of the Secreders and Associate Reformed when they united.


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