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Full text of "Biographical record of Ogle County, Illinois"

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BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD 



OF 



OGLE COUNTY, 



ILLINOIS. 



II^I^T^JSTTFe^^TTKIZ) 



A /)(•()/>/(' t/ii7/ /ale NO pride in ilic nohlc acJiicvcniciits of remote aiieestors Tvill never aehicvc 
aiiyt/iii/i; -cort/iv to In- reiiieiiibereJ -xitJi priJe l>y remote i^eiierat ions ." — ]M AfAUi.EV . 



CHICAGO; 

The S. J. Ci.AKKt Publishing Company. 
1899, 

S/UiK VALLEY COLLEGE 

LRC / o r, t Q 



"I^iofimphii Ls the oiilv true hisforv."--l:mcrN^n. 



PRKFACB. 



l^^^^^fllE irreatest of EntjHsh liistoriaiis, Macaui.av 




d one of the most 
Ijillliant writers of the present century, has said : " Tiie history of a 
country is best tolil in a record of the lives of its people." In con- 
formity with this idea, the Biogkapiiical Record has been prepared. 
Insteail of tjoinij to musty records, and takint,^ therefrom dry statistical 
matter that can be appreciated by but few, our corps of writers have 
irone to the people, the men and women who have, by their enterprise 
and industry, broufrht this county to a rank -^econd to none among 
tliose comprising this great and noble State, and from their lips have the story of their life 
struggles. Xo more interesting or instructive matter could be presenteil to an intelligent 
public. In this volume will be found a record of many whose lives are worthy the imitation 
of coming generations. It tells how some, commencing life in poverty, by industry- and 
economy have accumulated wealth. It tells how others, with limited advantages for securing 
an education, have become learneil men anil women, with an inlluence extending throughout 
the length and breadth of the land. It tells of men who have risen from the lower walks of 
life to eminence as statesmen, and whose names have become famous. It tells of those in 
every walk in life who have striven to succeed, and records how that success has usually 
crowned their efYorts. It tells also of many, very many, who, not seeking the applause of the 
world, have pursued the " even tenor of their way," content to have it said of them, as Christ 
said of the woman jjerfoiming a deed <if mercy — "They have done what they could." It 
tells how many, in the pride and strength of young manhood, left the plow and the anvil, the 
lawyer's office and the counting-room, left every trade and profession, and at their countrj^'s 
call went forth valiantly " to do or ilie," and how through their elTorts the I'nion was 
restored and peace once more reigned in the land. In the life of every man antl of every 
woman is a lesson that should not be lost upon those who follow after. 

Coming generations will a[ipreciate this volume and preserve it as a sacred treasure, trom 
the fact that it contains so much that would never find its way into public records, and which 
would otherwise be inaccessible. Great care has been taken in the compilation of the work, 
and every opportunity' possible given to those represented to insure correctness in what has 
been written ; and the publishers ilatter themselves that they give to their readers a work with 
few errors of consequence. In addition to biographical sketches, portraits of a number of 
representative citizens are given. 

The faces of some, and biographical sketches of many, will be missed in this volume. 
For this the publishers are not to blame. Xot having a proper conception of the work, some 
refused to give the information necessary to coinpile a sketch, while others were indifierent. 
Occasionally some member of the family would oppose the enterprise, and on account of such 
opposition the support of the interested one would be withheld. In a few instances men 
never could be found, though repe.ited calls were made at their residence or place ol business. 



May, 1S99. 



The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. 




HON. R. R. HITT. 



BIOGRAPHICAL. 



HON. ROBERT R. HITT, who has so 
ably represented his district as a mem- 
ber of congress, since 1882, is without 
doubt the most distinguished of the citizens 
of Ogle county. It is not an easy matter to 
briefly write the record of such a man, 
especially for perusal by his old friends and 
acquaintances, many of whom have known 
him from early childhood, and to whom his 
record is like an open book. For him they 
have the greatest admiration, and to them 
no honors bestowed upon him could be 
thought undeserved. He belongs to them, 
and while they know him he also knows 
them, and few there be of the old settlers 
of Ogle county that he cannot call by name. 
Robert Roberts Hitt was born in Urbana, 
Champaign county, Ohio, January 16, 1834, 
and is the second son of Rev. Thomas S. 
Hitt, who drove across the country from his 
Ohio home in 1837 and made himself and 
family a home in Ogle county, where the 
remainder of his life was spent. He located 
in Maryland colony, so called because of 
the number of settlers from that state who 
had migrated to northern Illinois, led by 
Samuel Merritt Hitt, an elder brother of 
Rev. Thomas, and a man of remarkable 
mental attainments and strong personality. 
One of the pioneers of Ogle county, he 
brought with him from Maryland a well- 
filled purse in addition to a fine college 
education, two attributes that commanded 
the deepest respect in that struggling com- 



munity, where ready cash in particular was 
all too scarce. By entry and purchase 
Squire Hitt secured thousands of acres of 
the best farming lands for his brothers and 
sisters, who hastened westward to occupy 
the choice sites thus selected, so that in a 
short time the "tribe of Hittites," as an 
old circuit-rider jokingly dubbed the colony, 
was a powerful factor in that new country. 

Some of the old settlers who have not 
forgotten the characteristics of the Hitt 
tribe say the family was noted for its fine 
physical appearance, whose six feet of man- 
hood and womanhood did full credit to its 
Kentucky origin. Rev. Thomas Smith Hitt, 
who was born in Bourbon county, Kentucky, 
at the close of the last century, was a trifle 
over si.x feet tall, and, like his father before 
him, was a pronounced anti-slavery man. It 
was this predilection which led old Martin 
Hitt, grandfather of the present congress- 
man, to move across to Ohio in i8i6, where 
his first act was to free his slaves. Twenty- 
one years later his son Thomas, with his 
young family, moved to Illinois, attracted 
thither by the glowing accounts of the coun- 
try as reported by Squire Hitt, who left 
Maryland for Illinois in 1836, one year in 
advance of his relations. 

A warm adherent of the Methodist 
church, of which he was an ordained min- 
ister, as was also his father. Rev. Martin 
Hitt, Rev. Thomas S. Hitt was well fitted 
by education and temperament to promote 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



the interests of Methodism in the newly 
settled country to which he had migrated, 
and when the name of Mt. Morris, in honor 
of the Methodist bishop, was given to the 
Maryland colony, Rev. Thomas Hitt was 
one of the first to suggest the founding of a 
seminary by the conference. Through his 
efforts, ably seconded by his brother. Squire 
Hitt, Rock River Seminary was called into 
existence, in whose historical walls many of 
the most illustrious sons of Illinois — men 
famous in the forum and on the battlefield 
— received their education. 

Here young Robert Hitt early went to 
school, and here, too, contemporar}' with 
him, only in older classes, were Senator 
Cullom, Governor Beveridge, State Senator 
Beveridge, John Rawlins, secretary of war 
under Grant; judge Cothran, of the supreme 
court of Wisconsin; Congressman Magoon, 
and many other students who later rose to 
eminence in their respective professions. 
Of a genial disposition and remarkably pro- 
ficient in his studies, Robert Hitt, although 
much younger than the majority of the lads 
with whom he associated, was a great fav- 
orite with all, and when he left Mt. Morris 
to complete his education at Asbury Uni- 
versity, in Greencastlc, Indiana, no one in 
the circle was missed more than he. 

The fact that he outstripped his com- 
panions in the race for college honors and 
graduated while but a youth attests his love 
for knowledge and early discipline of mind 
and determined application to which he 
owes his success in life. While but a lad he 
developed a fondness for phonography, and 
giving to the art all his leisure hours became 
an expert, and upon the completion of his 
education went forth into the world well 
equipped to enter what was then a com- 
paratively new field of usefulness, and to- 



day- he is one of the most remarkable men 
in the public life of America of this gen- 
eration. 

The commencement of his public career 
is contemporaneous with the agitation of the 
question of the perpetuation or over- 
throw of the institution of slavery in 
the United States. He was the pio- 
neer newspaper reporter of the west and 
through the instrumentality of his skill, tact, 
quick intelligence and a capacity that lay in 
many directions, coupled with a breadth of 
mind capable of comprehending and appre- 
ciating all the phases of that humane and 
magnificent enterprise in which his great 
party had its birth, the world was given the 
merits of the memorable Lincoln and Doug- 
las debate of 1858, upon which the glorious 
battle of liberty was fought and won. 

In one of his published reminiscences, 
Albert Woodcock, an old citizen of the 
state, speaks of the debate at Freeport, 
and the part taken in it by Mr. Hitt: 

'• A stand was erected in the field adja- 
cent to the city. Thousands of people 
gathered about the platform. The speakers 
were ready. The throng was impatient. 
The tall form of Lincoln arose. He looked 
anxiously over the crowd. He called out: 
'Where's Hitt? Is Hitt present?' Hitt, 
from the extreme outskirts of the living 
mass, answered, ' Here I am, but I cannot 
get to the platform.' The good-natured 
people understood the situation. They 
seized the slender youth and passed him 
over their heads to the stand." 

The story became current that Lincoln 
was always asking, " Where is Bob Hitt'" 
And " r>ob " found himself famous. He 
happened in this connection to do an im- 
portant historical service. All civilized peo- 
ple know now how excellent was Lincoln's 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



command of language, and how admirable 
his Hterary form. He was a master of 
speech; but during the Lincoln-Douglas 
campaign the Douglas party assailed him as 
illiterate, and charged that Hitt touched up 
all his speeches so as to make them pre- 
sentable. This Mr. Hitt always denied, 
stating that frequentl\' his phonographic 
notes were written out by an assistant, and 
he did not see the transcription from his 
notes until it was printed. 

During the legislative sessions of the as- 
sembly of Illinois, in 1S5S, '59 and '60, Mr. 
Hitt was the official reporter employed by 
the state. In 1S60, when the trouble arose 
in the department of the Missouri, under 
General Fremont, calling for immediate ex- 
amination, Mr. Lincoln sent the Holt-Davis 
commission to St. Louis, and Mr. Hitt was 
there laboriously engaged for many months 
as its secretary in that memorable investi- 
gation. This duty called for the exercise of 
abilities of no common order, and the work 
was one of immediate importance and his- 
torical value. Its voluminous reports, which 
detailed the disorders of the unfortunate 
Fremont rc-giiiic in Missouri, led to man}' 
and important changes and improvements 
in the efficiency of that department. 

Judge Holt, ex-secretary of war, in the 
account of their labors, which he submitted 
to the president, paid a high tribute to the 
value of Mr. Hitt's services. The severity 
of the labors attendant upon this dutj' 
brought on a long illness, and after his re- 
covery he reported in person to Secretary 
Stanton, who requested him to remain at 
the war department for important confiden- 
tial work and duties in the department of 
military justice. In 1863 he was engaged 
in the senate of the United States as secre- 
tary of a committee examining into the 



naval expeditions of Burnside and Banks. 
In 1S65 he accompanied a board of treaty 
commissioners to the northwest, ascending 
the Missouri river a distance of one thou- 
sand five hundred miles, for the purpose of 
negotiating with the Indian tribes in what 
was then a wilderness, which he described 
in letters to the Chicago Tribune as the 
"abomination of desolation," a lonely 
desert, scourged by ferocious savages. It 
has now thousands of homesteads scattered 
over it and is increasing every month in 
population. He returned home in the fall 
of the same year. Most of the following 
year he passed at Washington and at Ral- 
eigh, North Carolina, as recorder of military 
courts, spending the summer months at 
home. 

In 1867-S he \isited Scotland, Switzer- 
land, Greece, Egypt, and Palestine, spend- 
ing five weeks in Jerusalem. He visited the 
famous plain of Marathon, though warned 
against robbers, and told he certainly would 
be taken by bandits and [irobably killed. 
He dressed in a wretched old suit borrowed 
from a peasant, mounted the worst horse 
to be had, and took a Greek history and a 
wallet with a few coppers. He had hardly 
opened his book on the ancient battle-field 
when robbers came sure enough and seized 
him. He begged for food, and they gave 
him black bread, which he ate with avidity, 
though it was a horror, and gave each of 
them a copper. That was too much, and 
they let him go. 

In 1871 he went to Santo Domingo, 
with the three commissioners — Senator Ben 
Wade, of Ohio; President White, of Cor- 
nell University; and Dr. Samuel G. Howe, 
the Boston philanthropist, who were sent 
to that island by President Grant to inquire 
into its resources and affairs, with a view to 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



its annexation to tlie United States. Mr. 
Hitt prepared their report, an interesting 
and valuable work, of which fifty thousand 
copies were printed. 

In the latter part of this year and in 
1872 he was busily engaged as reporter of 
the noted Kuklux committee of the two 
houses, and wrote a large portion of their 
enormously extensive report, in thirteen 
volumes, exhibiting in great detail the po- 
litical condition of the southern states, 
nearly every one of which he visited with 
the committee. For some time after this 
he acted as private secretary of Senator O. 
P. Morton, who was one of the great lead- 
ers of the Republican party. 

In 1873 the Rock River Seminary had 
become so embarrassed that the school 
stopped and the creditors sold it out. Mr. 
Hitt, not forgetful of the deep interest taken 
in it long ago by his father, bought it, put it 
in repair, and it was started again with a 
corps of excellent teachers. It became 
again a good school, though it brought no 
money profit to repay his liberality. After 
six years he transferred it to the Brethren, 
or Dunkards, who are carrying it on with 
continuous efficiency. 

On the 28th of October, 1874, Mr. Hitt 
was united in marriage with Miss Sallie Rey- 
nolds, of Lafayette, Indiana, of whom it 
has been beautifully and truly said, "Gifted 
and highly educated, she is a charming and 
sweet-spirited woman, and her heart is in 
the work of her husband." Immediately 
after their marriage, they sailed for Europe, 
and while on their wedding tour, in Decem- 
ber, 1874, Mr. Hitt was appointed by Presi- 
dent Grant secretary of the legation at Paris, 
in which position he was continued under 
President Hayes. During their official resi- 
dence of six years in Paris the home of the 



secretary of the legation and his charming 
wife was the center of a distinguished co- 
terie of Americans and foreigners who were 
no less captivated by the intellect, courtli- 
ness and tact of Secretary Hitt than by his 
wife's brilliant conversational powers and 
her talents as a most entertaining hostess. 

Two sons were born during their resi- 
dence abroad, Robert Reynolds and Will- 
iam Floyd. 

Returning to this country, in 1S80, and 
while at his home in Mount Morris, Mr. 
Hitt one day received an urgent telegram 
from Mr. Blaine, secretary of state under 
President Garfield, asking him to come to 
Washington immediately. Supposing the 
secretary wished to consult him regarding 
French affairs, the late secretary of lega- 
tion hastened to the capital, and to his great 
surprise was there asked to fill the post of 
assistant secretary of state. After a brief 
consideration Mr. Hitt accepted the honor, 
and it is noteworthy that from that time 
until the hour of his death the brilliant sec- 
retary and his able assistant remained on 
terms of intimate relationship with each 
other. When Blaine resigned the state 
portfolio after President Garfield's death, 
Mr. Hitt went out with his chief the same 
day. President Arthur had a high opinion 
of Assistant Secretary Hitt, and would glad- 
ly have given him a responsible mission 
abroad, but, wisely enough, the proffered 
honor was declined, Mr. Hitt believing he 
had been away from home too long already. 

The sudden death of Congressman 
Hawk, of the sixth Illinois district, June 29, 
1882, two days before the convention to 
nominate a candidate, upset all precon- 
ceived plans, and a committee asked Mr. 
Hitt if it might present his name. The con- 
vention approved the choice and Mr. Hitt 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



5 



was nominated, elected, and has since been 
continued in congress. Writing of Mr. 
Hitt's personality in a recent number of 
Harper's Weekly, the veteran Washington 
correspondent, Murat Halstead, after com- 
menting on Mr. Hitt's useful career in con- 
gress, where his habits of industry and his 
information, knowledge of men and nations, 
history and languages and the varied phases 
of public life at home and abroad have 
given him high distinction, continuing, says: 

' ' His congressional work has been chiefly 
done in the committee on foreign relations. 
He is a positive and systematic protectionist, 
was an early advocate of removingthe duty 
on sugar and strongly against reducing the 
ta.x on whisky. He has attempted to regu- 
late the jurisdiction of consuls, as he well 
knew their deficiencies, and he strongly 
urged, when he had little company, the 
observance of treaty stipulations with the 
Chinese. The vigilance and experience of 
Mr. Hitt on the committee on foreign rela- 
tions have been of general and marked 
value. In the Cutting case he saved con- 
gress from making a mistaken menace 
against Mexico. On the Hawaiian inter- 
vention he delivered a speech of extraordi- 
nary energy and acumen and thoroughness. 
Perhaps the strongest of all ,his speeches 
was on ' Commercial Union with Canada.' 
Mr. Hitt wears well and is a satisfactory 
example of the value of the training of jour- 
nalism for public life." 

From 18S3 until 1S90 his party were in 
minority in congress, but Mr. Hitt advanced 
in grade, step by step, till he became the lead- 
ing member of the Republican minority in the 
committee on foreign affairs and its repre- 
sentative on the floor of the house, which 
gave opportunity for important services to 
the country. For example, in 1888, when 



a measure was brought in by the adminis- 
tration authorizing an immediate threaten- 
ing demand upon Mexico for the instant 
liberation of Cutting, which the committee 
on the previous day had endorsed, and the 
whole house was about to adopt, Mr. Hitt, 
having in tfie interval made sure of the real 
facts, that Cutting was not held oppressively 
and that the Mexican government was most 
anxious to do anything we requested, and 
that the inflamed state of feeling in Mexico 
would be fanned into an attack upon Mex- 
ico and another disagraceful Mexican war, 
if such a resolution were passed, in a short, 
clean speech, reversed opinion in the house, 
defeated the resolution and prevented infin- 
ite mischief, or war. 

He was an advocate of wider commerce 
with our neighbors on the south and north. 
He introduced and secured the unanimous 
adoption by the house in March, 18 89, of a 
resolution contemplating complete com- 
mercial union with Canada, which, once in 
operation, would ultimately result in peace- 
ful annexation. His speech on this measure, 
Murat Halstead said, "was a thorough and 
logical presentation of a great, far-reaching 
proposition. " 

In the previous session, in September, 
1888, when President Cleveland's Canadian 
retaliation message came suddenly in, right 
in the midst of the presidential campaign, 
he exposed the mischievous character of 
this electioneering device to catch Irish 
votes, and discussed the whole question 
searchingly. A long debate ensued. Hon. 
Bourke Cockran replied to the argument, 
but saying of his opponent: 

"Mr. Speaker: The distinguishing ad- 
dress on the other side, the one that has 
furnished the key-note to this discussion, 
was the very able and eloquent speech of 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



the gentleman from Illinois (Mr. Hitt), to 
whom, and to whom alone, is due the credit 
of lifting the debate to a high plane of par- 
liamentary procedure. But I regret to say 
that while the speech was eloquent, it lacked 
those elements of candor and fairness that 
would have made it the greatest speech of 
the session." 

In 1887 and afterwards he supported the 
interstate commerce law, taking exception 
only to the long-and-short-haul clause as in- 
jurious to his constituents. 

In 1 890, when the Republicans came into 
power and the memorable struggle of the 
Reed congress began, he was at last made 
chairman of theconnniltec on foreign affairs, 
and has since held that position whenever 
his party was in power, and when they were 
in minority leading the minority on ques- 
tions of foreign policy. 

He has been an active member of con- 
gress on all current legislation. He effi- 
ciently supported the oleomargarine bill to 
protect genuine butter from bogus butter 
being sold under the same name, the bill to 
check counterfeiting lard and other meat 
products, and to promote and facilitate their 
exportation on favorable terms. He urged 
the law passed to foil the subtle attack on 
the moral sense of the people by the liquor 
interest sheltering itself under a provision of 
the interstate commerce act as construed by 
a decision of the supreme court. The orig- 
inal package law abrogated that decision, 
and left the state free to regulate the sale 
of li(|nors, whether imported into the state 
in original packages or not. lie attacked 
the Louisiana lottery swindle, which was 
usingthe postal system uutilaljill was passed 
prohibiting the United States mails from 
being nuule the instrinneut of their nefarious 
business. 



When in 1890, provision was to be 
made for a World's fair in 1893, he sup- 
ported the claims of Chicago as the best 
site; and he and Mr. Springer were appoint- 
ed the two Illinois members of the special 
committee to which the subject was en- 
trusted. He had charge of the bill when 
it came before the house; and as the result 
of long, hard labor, Chicago was victorious. 
His speech in advocacy of Chicago, Feb- 
ruary 20, 1S90, presented the claims of that 
city in the strongest light. On the seventh 
vote, Chicago received one hundred and 
fifty-seven votes — exactly a majority. 

He was during the eighties returned in 
"off years" by about three thousand five 
iiundred majority, in presidential years by 
about six thousand five hundred majority, 
until 1S90, when, in the tempest of dissatis- 
faction after the passage of the McKinley 
bill, just before election, he was well nigh 
defeated, receiving only five hundred and 
eleven majority. In subsequent elections, 
with the great popularity of the same mea- 
sure after it had been in operation, the old 
time majorities were renewed. After the 
Wilson tariff bill passed in 1894, his ma- 
jority rose to twelve thousand, and in 1896, 
with increased dissatisfaction over the re- 
suhs of that bill, his majority was nearly 
eighteen thousand; and again in i S98 it 
was (_)ver fifteen thousand, though it was an 
' ' off year." 

By watching and urging local interests 
in his own district, Mr. Hitt obtained an 
appropriation of one hundred thousand dol- 
lars fur the improvement of Galena river, 
one hundred thousand dollars for a public 
building at Rockford, and in 1S99, seventy- 
five thousand dollars for a public building at 
Freeport. 

He has advocated and secured the pass- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



age of various measures to promote recipro- 
city and increase trade with tiie other 
American republics; and each year has 
watched that liberal provision be made for 
this cause and for the Bureau of American 
Republics in the consular and diplomatic 
appropriation bill, of which the chairman of 
foreign affairs has charge in its framing and 
in its passage through the house and 
through the conference committee with the 
senate. 

In I Sgo he brought in a resolution recog- 
nizing the Republic of Brazil, which was 
soon unanimously passed. His conservative 
counsel and course contributed to the 
prompt and peaceful settlement of the 
difficulties with Chili in 1S92. 

In the same year, when a proposition 
was made by the majority to reduce our 
mission to Venezuela in grade, he seized 
the opportunity, in opposing it, to call pub- 
lic attention to the encroachment of Eng- 
land upon that feeble republic, in violation 
of our Monroe doctrine. Wlien, in Decem- 
ber, 1895, President Cleveland sent in his 
Venezuelan message demanding a just set- 
tlement of this question between Great 
Britain and the helpless republic, which was 
being gradually swallowed, Mr. Hitt im- 
mediately prepared and offered a bill pro- 
viding for a commission to investigate and 
report the true divisional line, which he 
urged ui such a patriotic spirit upon all par- 
ties that it was at once unanimously adopt- 
ed; by thus referring the question to a calm 
tribunal, the public alarm was quieted. 
The unanimity of the American congress 
led Lord Salisbury to yield to investigation 
and arbitration, which the British govern- 
ment had twice before refused. 

Mr. Hitt has labored to improve the 
efficiency of our consular service. He de- 



livered an address on the subject before the 
Boston Merchants' Association in 1893. In 
a speech in the house April 17, 1894, he 
discussed the general subject and merciless- 
ly exposed the recent scandals in the sale of 
public office and the degradation of the serv- 
ice. He has been for many years an agent 
of the Smithsonian institution. In 1895 he 
was appointed by Speaker Crisp, one of 
the delegates to the expected international 
monetary conference. 

He endeavored, successfully, in 1893 to 
secure the passage of a bill to check the 
abuses and violations of the interstate com- 
merce act by Canadian railways. He moved 
an amendment to the Wilson tariff bill, Jan- 
uary 20, 1894, to secure reciprocity with 
Canada in coal, instead of granting the free 
admission of Canadian coal without com- 
pensation. He again tried to amend the 
Wilson tariff act, January 29, 1895, by 
striking out the extra duty on refined sugar, 
which was there solely to protect the sugar 
trust. 

Several times he has advocated and 
urged the construction of a cable to Ha- 
waii, in 1S90, and again in 1895, when 
he discussed the matter at length and thor- 
oughly. 

In 1894 he arraigned in a strenuous 
speech the policy of President Cleveland in 
trying to overthrow the republican govern- 
ment in Hawaii and restore the ex-queen; 
and in 189S he brought in the measure for 
the annexation of the Hawaiian islands, 
which passed the house June 5. Very soon 
afterwards he was appointed by the Presi- 
dent one of the commissioners to visit the 
islands, examine the government and re- 
commend necessary legislation to congress. 
With Senators Cullom and Morgan, he went 
to the islands, and when congress met in- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



troduced in the house a bill, the result of 
their labors, to organize the territory of 
Hawaii. 

In 1896 when the struggle in Cuba 
seemed to be regarded by President Cleve- 
land with indifference, he brought in and 
advocated a resolution expressing the opin- 
ion of the house that a state of war ex- 
isted, the parties to which were entitled to 
belligerent rights. It passed, but no heed 
was paid to it. 

President McKinley desired to appoint 
Mr. Hitt minister to Spain when the gravest 
questions were pending, but he did not ac- 
cept. 

In the spring of 1898, when, with the 
the change of administration, there was ex- 
pectation of change in events, and great im- 
patience for some immediate action by the 
house, he made a speech or statement 
which, by its conservative tone and assur- 
ances, did much to satisfy opinion and pre- 
vent hasty action upon a resolution which 
the senate had passed, recognizing the 
Cuban republic, and which would have 
brought embarrassing complications in the 
war. 

In 1895 Mr. Hitt suffered a long and 
severe illness, from which he did not re- 
cover full health for nearly two years. In 
January, 1897, when the election of United 
States senator was impending, Mr. Hitt was 
supported in an animated and agreeable 
contest by the members of the legislature 
from his part of the state, but was not 
elected. He is a member of the fifty- 
sixth congress, which meets December 4, 
I S99. 

In his own district Mr. Hitt is very popu- 
lar. There is an entire absence of the dic- 
tator in his (political composition. He never 
meddles with the local campaigns, has no 



desire to "boss" any town or county con- 
vention and is proud of the fact that no 
" machine" prevails in his district. In Ogle 
county, for example, there are often five or 
six different candidates running for the same 
office, and the people usually have the voice 
and vote to say which is their choice. In 
all his campaigns his personality counts 
much. He is the same "Bob" Hitt to-day 
that he was a score of years ago, with a 
kindly word for all his constituents, and 
ready to give his advice and the benefit of 
his experience to Republican or Democrat 
alike. 

On the platform he maintains the fair 
ground of debate, never makes the Demo- 
crats angry by innuendos or vituperation, 
but tries to score his points by a clear, in- 
cisive presentation of his case that is well 
calculated to carry conviction to the hearts 
and minds of his hearers. Animated in tone, 
he assumes a conversational style of address, 
and is never dull. He pronounces distinctly, 
leaves no doubt about the meaning he in- 
tends to convey, and has a vocabulary that 
is large and particularly well chosen. He 
has a most retentive memory, and it is said 
of him that he knows the personal history 
of every family living in his district, most 
of the voters of which he can call by their 
given names. 

It is an entertainment in itself to watch 
Mr. Hitt on the platform just prior to a 
political gathering or an old settlers' meet- 
ing where he is to deliver an address. Easy 
and natural in manner, he is at once the 
master of ceremonies as well as the distin- 
guished guest. 

"Now, Uncle Daniel," he will say, 
"you can't see anything over there; just 
step forward and take this seat," at the same 
time placing a chair in a convenient spot 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



where the old gentleman addressed may 
best see and hear everything:;. In this way 
Mr. Hitt gets close to the people, chats with 
them about their personal affairs and drop- 
ping politics folds his hands and discusses 
those simple, every-day occurrences that, 
after all, are nearest the heart. The Dunk- 
ards, of which denomination there is a 
strong following in his district, and who, 
allied to no particular party, vote according 
to the dictates of conscience, have an abid- 
ing respect for Mr. Hitt, whom they greatly 
admire for his squareness and high purpose. 
That they stand by him in every election is 
proof "strong as holy writ " of the sterling 
character of the man whom the sixth dis- 
trict delights to honor. 

As already intimated, Mr. Hitt is a mod- 
est man and is rarely heard on the platform 
outside his district. He has repeatedly 
been invited to deliver addresses in Chicago 
and elsewhere before social and semi- 
political bodies, but has invariably asked to 
be excused, although, it is safe to say, 
fewer public speakers are better qualified 
by nature to interest an audience than he. 
An omnivorous reader, his entire house at 
Mount Morris might be termed a library, 
for every room teems with "man's best 
gift to man." Notwithstanding his strong 
practical sense, there is a fine undercurrent 
of sentiment in his composition which soft- 
ens and at the same time elevates the man. 
The death of his beloved mother on his re- 
turn from Paris in iS8o was a severe blow 
to one who fairly idolized the woman who 
bore him, and to whom for years he had 
carried every confidence and with whom he 
had discussed every move of his life. His 
father having died many years before, the 
bond between the mother and son was 

more strongly cemented, although for the 
1 



memory of his father Mr. Hitt has the most 
tender regard. It is his wish that his two 
sons may forever keep intact the homestead 
farm which their grandfather received from 
the government in 1837, and which, curious 
to relate, is the only landed property held 
by the Hitts in Ogle county, where once 
their forefathers were possessed of thou- 
sands of acres. 

Mr. Hitt is just as popular in Washing- 
ton as he is at home, and some of the best 
and brainiest people of the country are 
proud to claim his friendship, as he is theirs. 
The late James G. Blaine, William Walter 
Phelps and James Russell Lowell were 
among his warmest friends, and between 
him and big brainy Tom Reed, of Maine, 
there is a deep and long-standing attach- 
ment. Mrs. Hitt is justly regarded as one 
of the best entertainers at Washington, and 
during the season their beautiful home is 
in a constant state of receptivity. Viva- 
cious, beautiful, full of tact and gracious- 
ness, she is an ideal wife of a public man, 
and both in his official and home life the 
able congressman is rarely blessed in this 
respect. Murat Halstead, in an interesting 
article in Harper's Weekly, says: "Mr. 
Hitt's knowledge of Europe enhances his 
estimation of America. He has known two 
generations of our foremost men of affairs, 
from Lincoln and Douglas to Blaine, Har- 
rison and Cleveland; and in the rare scope 
of his recollections and the invaluable edu- 
cation of his personal services he has re- 
tained and refined, and holds with unaf- 
fected dignity, the simple modesty of his 
laborious early manhood; and there is no 
more attractive household than in the hap- 
py, hospitable homes his wife and sons 
grace and enliven at Mt. Morris and in 
Washington." 



lO 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



PETER B. WRAGG, whose farm lies in 
sections 5 and 6, Grand Detour town- 
ship, is a native of Ogle county, born De- 
cember 22, 1S52, and is the son of Peter 
and Nancy Jane (Thompson) Wragg, the 
former a native of England, born October 
4, 1 8 14, and the latter of Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland, born April 23, 1S25. They 
were the parents of the following named 
children: William H., born February 13, 
1846; Sarah, October 3, 1847, and who is 
now the wife of William Hoffman; Ann E., 
January 17, 1850; Mary I., August 10, 
1S51; Peter B., December 22, 1852; Dan- 
iel S., April iS, 1854; Edward F., June 3, 
1857, and who died April 6, i860; John 
M., April 7, 1861; and Martha E., wife of 
John Nett2, April 11, 18G3. 

Peter Wragg was the son of Peter F. 
and Hannah (Smith) Wragg, also natives of 
England. Being put out to service on a 
farm, at which he was displeased, at the 
age of fourteen he ran away, and joined his 
brother, Thomas, who came to America a 
short time previously. The two brothers 
engaged at work in a saw and planing mill 
in Troy for about six years, and then deter- 
mined to come west, having heard of the 
great opportunities afforded the poor man 
in what was known as the Prairie state. On 
coming to Ogle county, Peter Wragg found 
employment in a sawmill at Grand Detour, 
wlicre he remained two years, saving his 
earnings and investing the same in govern- 
ment land. He later engaged in breaking 
prairie and freighting to and from Chicago, 
to Peoria and the Galena lead mines. He 
was married June 17, 1845, to Miss Nancy 
JaneTliompson.daughterof James and Judith 
(b'unck) Thompson, and soon after located 
on a farm on section 32, Pine Creek town- 
ship, which was his home for about eight- 



een months, when he moved to the farm in 
Grand Detour township now owned by our 
subject. Commencing life in this country 
with a capital of two shillings, which he had 
on landing, by his industry and good man- 
agement, assisted by his faithful wife, he 
succeeded in accumulating much property, 
having at the time of his death, in January, 
1892, some fifteen hundred acres of good 
land, besides his personal property. Polit- 
ically he was a Democrat. While he could 
neither read nor write, he was a man of great 
natural ability, and a good business man. 

Peter B. Wragg was reared on the old 
home farm on which he still resides. He 
was earl}' learned to know the meaning of 
hard work, and when quite young was ex- 
pected to do his full share of farm labor. 
He never shirked his duty and toiled early 
and late, assisting in the cultivation of the 
farm. On the 12th ot January, 1875, he 
was united in marriage with Miss Margaret 
Ellen Nettz, who was born March 8, 1856, 
in Pine Creek township, and a daughter of 
Jacob and Ruann (Drenner) Netts, both of 
whom were nati\es of Washington county, 
Maryland, and who came to Ogle county in 
1855. The former was born May 24, 1813, 
and the latter September 2j, 1819. They 
were the parents of twelve children, four of 
whom died in infancy or early childhood. 
The living are: Mary E. , born December 
28, 1836; Joseph H., December 19, 1840; 
Amanda Caroline, September 17, 1847; 
Jacob F. , January iS, 1854; Margaret Ellen, 
March 8, 1S56; Lyida A., Februarys, 185S; 
Alice Amelia, July 14, 1S62, and Clara, 
March 30, 1850. By trade Jacob Nettz 
was a blacksmith, but on coming to Ogle 
county he followed farming in connection 
with his trade. He died November iS, 
1898. To Mr. and Mrs. Wragg one child 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



1 1 



has been born, Lura May, born July 3, 
1885, and who is now attending the district 
school. 

The subject of this sketch has made his 
home on the farm where he now resides 
with the exception of three years. In addi- 
tion to the cultivation of his farm he has 
been raising red and black polled Angus 
cattle, Morgan and Norman horses, and 
Poland-China hogs. He is meeting with 
success in his chosen calling and has the 
confidence of the community in which he 
resides. In politics he is a Democrat, and 
for nine years has served as school director. 
Religiously, he and his wife are members 
of the Christian church. 



MICHAEL MILLER, now living a re- 
tired life in the village of Haldane, 
was for years numbered among the active 
farmers and business men of Ogle county. 
He is a native of Germany, born in Hessen 
Darmstadt, February 10, 1831, and is a son 
of John and Amelia Carlotte Miller, both 
of whom were natives of the same country. 
In early life the father engaged in farming, 
and in later life was in the hotel business. 
He died in his native land in 1840. His 
wife survived him about ten years. Our 
subject is the youngest of their family of 
thirteen children who grew to mature years. 
He and his brother Nicholas, now residing 
in Adair county, Missouri, are the only sur- 
vivors. 

Michael Miller grew to manhood in his 
native land and received a good education 
in the German and French languages. His 
knowledge of English was acquired after 
his removal to this countr}'. In his youth 
he learned the blacksmith trade, at which 
he became quite proficient before his emi- 



gration to the United States. His native 
land afforded little inducements to the poor 
man to acquire either wealth or position, 
and so he determined to come to a country 
where an equal chance was given to all 
alike. Accordingly he set sail for New York, 
by way of Rotterdam and London. His 
vessel was a slow sailing one and he was 
thirt3'-five days on the Atlantic ocean, a voy- 
age which can now be made in six days. 
\\'hile on the voyage they encountered but 
one severe storm. 

Mr. Miller arrived in New York the week 
before Christmas in 1853, and at once set 
out for Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, where 
he went to work at his trade, and continued 
there nearly two years. He then came to 
Illinois and located at Freeport. The first 
Sunday at that place he saw what to him 
was a strange sight, a wagon loaded with 
people coming into church, the wagon be- 
ing drawn b)' oxen. For about one year he 
remained at Freeport, working at his trade, 
and then moved to Mt. Morris, where he 
continued at his trade for a year and a half. 
He then returned to Pennsylvania, and was 
married at Chambersburg, August 16, 1857, 
to Miss Margaret Florig, a native of Hes- 
sen Darmstadt, Germany, but reared in 
Baden. Her father, Leonholt Morig, also 
a native of Germany, was a miller and baker 
by trade. In 1S52 he removed with his 
family to the United States and settled in 
Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, and there 
spent the remainderof his life. Mrs. Miller 
is the oldest of a family of eight children, of 
whom three only survive, the others being 
Mrs. Catherine Bowers and Mrs. Eva Burket, 
both residing in Chambersburg, Pennsyl- 
vania. 

After marriage. Miller returned with his 
liride to Illinois and located at Polo, where 



12 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



he worked at his trade about nine months, 
and March 12, 1858, removed to Haldane, 
where he built a shop and began working at 
his trade, at which he continued to work 
for thirty-five years. For many years he 
had the only shop in the place, and in con- 
nection had a wagon repair shop. In i86r 
he built a residence and located on the lots 
where he now resides. He also bought a 
a tract of sixty-two acres near the village, 
which later his sons began to cultivate. He 
also bought eight acres adjoining the village 
which he had platted as an addition to the 
village. He still owns the farm, which lies 
about one mile west of the village, and 
which is a well improved place. 

Mr. and Mrs. Miller are the parents of 
nine children, all of whom have reached ma- 
turity. Benjamin F., a farmer, is married, 
and resides in Wright county, Iowa. Anna 
is the wife of Frank Forney, a farmer of 
Ogle county. John resides in Logan, Mon- 
tana, where he is engaged in the hotel busi- 
ness. Kate married Lewis Carman, a 
farmer of Wright county, Iowa, where they 
now live. Emma is the wife of A. Hedwick, 
of Haldane. Mary now makes her home 
in Polo. William, Ida and Charles yet re- 
side at home. 

Politically Mr. Miller is a Republican, 
and during the war was the only Republican 
and stanch supporter of the administration 
in Haldane. He cast his first presidential 
vote for Abraham Lincoln, in i860, and has 
never missed casting his vote for the nomi- 
nee of the Republican party for president 
from that time to the present. The only 
official position that he has ever held was 
that of school director, an office that he 
held for nine years. He and his wife are 
meml)ers of the Evangelical church and as- 
sisted in the organization of the chufch and 



in the erection of the church building. He 
was for years one of the official board of 
the church, and also superintendent of the 
Sunday-school. 

Mr. Miller has been a resident of Ogle 
county for more than forty-three years, and 
one of the two of the original settlers of Hal- 
dane that are now left. He is well known, and 
by whom known is held in the highest re- 
spect. He has been an industrious man, 
and all that he possesses has been secured 
by hard work, his good wife rendering that 
assistance which the true wife always gives. 



GEORGE UREXLER, a retired farmer 
living in the village of Creston, came 
to Ogle county in 1869, and in the thirty 
years of his residence here has become a 
well-known citizen, one in whom the com- 
munity has implicit confidence. He was 
born in Wildenberg, Bavaria, Germany, 
April 5, 1S34, and is the son of Nicholas 
and Catherine (Himler) Dre.xler, both of 
whom were natives of Germany, where 
their entire lives were spent. . The father, 
who was a farmer by occupation, died in 
1864, his wife surviving him many years, 
dying in 1887. 

The subject of this sketch remained in 
his native country until he was in his 
eighteenth year. He received a good edu- 
cation in the schools of Bavaria, and in tlie 
meantime assisted his father in the cultiva- 
tion of the farm. Friends of his youth had 
already emigrated to the United States, and 
the desire came into his heart to also go to 
that favored land, where even the lowliest 
had the opportunity of making a name and 
acquiring wealth. With his sister, Anna, he 
set sail for the new world in a slow sailing 
vessel, and after a long and tedious voyage 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



13 



of twenty-eight days they landed in New 
York in March, 1852. They located at 
Palatine, New York, where his sister later 
married Henry Wagner. Mr. and Mrs. 
Wagner, who yet remain in Palatine, where 
he owns a valuable and well improved farm, 
have a family of five living children, one of 
whom is married. 

On his arrival in Palatine, Mr. Dre.xler 
hired to a farmer for the sum of forty dol- 
lars per year and a pair of boots. After some 
seven months had passed, he was convinced 
that the farmer was about to beat him out 
of the forty dollars promised. He settled 
with him, however, for twenty-eight dollars 
for the seven months and quit his service. 
The next year he worked for sixty dollars 
per year, and continued to be thus employed 
at a slight advance until the beginning of 
the war, receiving thirteen dollars per month 
in i860. In the fall of 1861 he returned to 
his native land and there remained until 
1866, assisting his parents on the home 
farm. Returning to Palatine, New York, 
he went to work on a farm for twenty-five 
dollars per month, and continued there un- 
til 1869. 

Mr. Drexler was married in Schenec- 
tady, New York, December 8, 1868, to 
Miss Eliza Bauder, a native of the town of 
Palatine, New York, and a daughter of 
Christopher and Lana (Nellis) Bauder, early 
settlers of the Mohawk valley, of German 
parentage. Mrs. Bauder died in 1854, but 
he lived until 1898, and died at the ripe old 
age of eighty-seven years. They had a 
family of nine children, all of whom are yet 
living, as follows: Simon P., of Amster- 
dam, New York; Rufus, of Palatine, New 
York; Ervin, of Sterling, Illinois; Henry, of 
Malta, Illinois; George, of Montgomery 
county, New York; Eliza C. , wife of our 



subject; Ella, wife of Josiah Nestle, of Pal- 
atine, New York; Mrs. Amanda Miller, of 
Palatine, New York; Lana, wife of Jeremiah 
Van Wie, of Palatine, New York. 

In March, 1869, Mr. Dre.xler came with 
his bride to Ogle county, where for one year 
he worked by the month. In January, 
1870, he purchased eighty acres of partially 
improved land in Lynnville township, and 
commenced life in earnest. Industrious as 
the day was long, and with a wife who was 
likewise industrious, one who believed the 
interests of her husband was that of her 
own, he went to work with a determination 
to more than make an ordinary living. In 
1S75 he purchased eighty acres of land ad- 
joining his farm, erected a new barn, and 
made many other improvements. In 1888 
he purchased one hundred and sixty acres, 
giving him a half-section of good land, all of 
which was well improved. 

Mr. and Mrs. Drexler have two children 
living. Libbie J. is now the wife of David 
Deily, whose parents reside in the same 
township, and they have one child. Alia 
Blanche. The}' reside in the township of 
Malta, DeKalb count)-, Illinois. Ervin mar- 
ried Mary Kempson, in 1896, and is now 
successfully carrying on the home farm. 
His wife's parents reside in Creston. 

Mr. Drexler came to Ogle county with 
little else than a stout heart and willing 
hands. He had always before worked for 
wages, and of course could not lay by very 
much of this world's goods. He knew how 
to work and was a practical farmer. Day 
in and day out he toiled on and the result is 
shown by his fine (arm and large quantity 
of personal property. He had no special 
fad in farming, but in addition to the crops 
annually raised on the farm, he was also en- 
gaged in stock raising, feeding a large num- 



14 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ber of head of cattle and hogs for the gen- 
eral markets. He was successful in all that 
he did, and his success has come from in- 
dustry, economy, wise management, assist- 
ed in part by his good wife. 

Politically Mr. Drexler is a Republican, 
his first presidential ballot having been cast 
for General Grant. From that time to the 
present he has voted the party ticket, but 
has never wanted or cared for public office. 
However he was elected, finally qualified, 
and served as road commissioner. Inter- 
ested in the cause of education, he served 
for fifteen years on the school board. Mr. 
and Mrs. Drexler have on several occasions 
visited the liome of her parents in New 
York state. They were reared in the Luth- 
eran faith, and while now they are mem- 
bers of no church, they attend the Methodist 
Episcopal church at Creston. 



"\ X HLLLXM BIRD, deceased, was a rep- 
V V resentative of the sturdy English 
race that have done so much in the civiliza- 
tion of the world, and whose influence will 
be felt in all time to come. He was born 
in the parish of Ciiawleigh, Devonshire, 
England, February ii, 1806, and in his na- 
tive land grew to manhood. In his youth 
he learned the trade of wool comber, which 
he followed in Devonshire. After his re- 
moval to the United States he learned the 
trade of harnessmaker, which he followed 
for a number of years. His educational ad- 
vantages were not of the best, but by read- 
ing and observation he became a well in- 
formed man. 

Tile covmtries of Europe, with their 
pride of aristocracy, give but little opportun- 
ity to the poor man to advance in life, and 
for that reason many are compelled to 



sunder home ties and emigrate to a land 
where all are equal in the eyes of the law, 
and all have the opportunity to seek and 
secure a higher position in life. Because of 
this fact William Bird left his native land 
in 1834, and after a long and tedious voy- 
age in the slow sailing vessels of that time 
finally landed in this country and located in 
Ohio, which was his home for twenty-three 
years and where he made a fairly good 
start in life. Still farther west the oppor- 
tunities were even greater, and in 1S57 he 
came with his family to Ogle county and 
located in Lynnville township, which con- 
tinued to be his home until his death. 

Mr. Bird was married in Norwalk, Ohio, 
in I S3 5, to Miss Elizabeth Ford, also a na- 
tive of Devonshire, England. Her father. 
Rev. James Ford, was born near Cornwall, 
Devonshire, England, in 1787. He was a 
well educated man, and was a distinguished 
minister of the Non-Conformists, He mar- 
ried Mary Webber, of his native shire, and 
to them were born eight children, five 
daughters and three sons — Elizabeth, Ann, 
Mary, Susanna, Betsy, James, John W. 
and George. They came to the United 
States in 1833, and also located in Ohio, 
where the father died shortly after their ar- 
rival. The mother survived him many 
years, dying in 1866. 

To William Bin! and wife six chiliiren 
were born, five sons and one daughter. 
James I'', married Jeannette Payne, and 
they have one daughter, Nellie. They re- 
side in Rochelle, where he is in the produce 
business. John W. was twice married, 
first to Martha Nashold, who died, and he 
later married Martha Reasoner, by whom 
he has two children, F. Ernest and Clara 
E. They reside in Iowa, where he has at- 
tained considerable prominence as a stock 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



15 



raiser and a politician, having served two 
terms in tiie legislature of that state. W. 
Reed died of an accident in a runaway, De- 
cember 26, 1896, at the age of fifty-si.x 
years. Clara E. married John A. McCrea, 
now of Creston, and they have two daugh- 
ters, Ella B. and Florence. (See sketch 
elsewhere in this work.) George E. mar- 
ried Margaret Starrett, of Jasper county, 
Iowa, and they have one daughter, Mary L. 
They reside in Rockford, Iowa, where he is 
engaged in the farm implement business. 
Frank F. is managing the home farm for his 
mother. He received a good education in 
the schools of Rochelle, and later attended 
one year in the normal school at Valpa- 
raiso, Indiana. He has taught several 
terms in the public schools of Ogle county, 
and has given good satisfaction as a teacher. 
William Bird departed this life Febru- 
ary 23, 1875. He was a belie\cr in the 
Christian religion, and died in the full 
assurance of faith in a glorious resurrection. 
Mrs. Bird, who still survi\'es him, is a mem- 
ber of the Methodist Episcopal church, and 
is a firm believer in the religion of Christ. 
She is well known in the township in which 
she has made her home for more than forty- 
two years, and where\er known she is 
greatly esteemed. 



HOMER W. MULNIX, who resides on 
section 30, Buffalo township, is a 
worthy representative of the younger gener- 
ation of farmers and stock raisers of Ogle 
county. He is a native of the county, and 
was born in Eagle Point township, Septem- 
ber 2, 1S58. His father, John Mulnix, was 
born in Delaware county. New York, in 
1897, and there grew to manhood. He 
was twice married, first in his native coun- 



ty, and with his wife and family came to 
Illinois in 1S50, locating in Lee county, 
where his first wife died, leaving a family of 
six children, three sons and three daugh- 
ters. He later married Mrs. Lydia San- 
ford, //('(' Sweet, also a native of Delaware 
county, New York. After the death of his 
first wife and his second marriage he re- 
moN'cd to Eagle Point township, where he 
spent the remainder of his life. He was a 
successful farmer and acquired a comfortable 
competence. His death occurred in Febru- 
ary, 1 89 1. His wife survived him, and 
passed away in 1897. They were the par- 
ents of three children: Louisa, who died a 
young lady; Homer W., our subject, and 
Corydon, a farmer of Ogle county. 

Homer W. Mulnix spent his boyhood 
and youth on his father's farm, and received 
his education in the home school and in the 
Polo high school. He continued on the 
home farm, and assisted his father in the 
management of the farm until the latter's 
death. He was married in Cedar county, 
Iowa, March 18, 18S5, to Miss Nellie E.Will- 
iams, a native of Ohio, who was reared and 
educated in Cedar county, Iowa, and daugh- 
ter of James Williams, a well known citizen of 
that county. After his marriage he rented 
one season and then moved to his place of 
residence, having succeeded to sixty acres 
of his father's estate. He later bought an 
adjoining eighty acres, giving him one hun- 
dred and forty acres in the home farm. 
Subsequently he bought another farm of one 
hundred and forty-six acres in the same 
neighborhood, and is now cultivating both 
farms. For some years he made a specialty 
raising, buying and selling horses, but of 
late he has turned his attention more espe- 
cially to breeding, raising and dealing in cat- 
tle, and is counted among the successful 



i6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



stock raisers and farmers of Ogle county. 
To Mr. and Mrs. Mulnix have been born 
two sons: Forest Robert and John T. , the 
former a student of the home school. 

Mr. Mulni.x cast his first presidential vote 
for James A. Garfield, in 1880, since which 
time he has been an earnest advocate of the 
principles of the Republican party. He has 
never sought or wanted public office, but 
having at heart the interest of the public 
schools, he has served on the school board 
for nine years, and is now township trustee 
of schools. Fraternally he is a member of 
the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of 
Polo, and also of the Knights of the Globe. 
It is as a farmer and stock raiser that he is 
best known throughout Ogle and adjoining 
counties. He has shown himself well qual- 
ified for the business, and is a thoroughly 
practical man. A man of strict integrity of 
character he makes friends and ever retains 
that friendship. 



CHARLES M. HALLER, an old and 
highly-esteemed citizen of Forreston, 
traces his ancestry back to colonial days. 
His maternal grandfather. Captain Meach, 
who was in command of a vessel, took part 
in the Revolutionary war. His daughter, 
Abigail Meach, married Robert Hewitt, who 
was of English and French ancestry, and 
who also took part m the Revolutionary 
war, having many narrow escapes in several 
engagements. Robert Hewitt was a native 
of Connecticut, but with his wife and family 
he emigrated to Maryland in 1815. They 
were the parents of twelve children, of 
whom the mother of our subject was fifth 
in order of birth. He died in 1830, and 
his remains were buried at Middlebury, 
Franklin county, Pennsylvania. His wife 



survived him many years, and came with 
her family to Illinois in 1840. She lived to 
a ripe old age, dying in November, 1855, 
in her ninety-fourth year, having been born 
August 10, 1 76 1. Her remains were in- 
terred in the Hewitt cemetery, at Forres- 
ton. She used to cook for the Indians, 
and had many interesting stories to relate 
of her Revolutionary experiences. 

The mother of our subject, Abigail 
(Hewitt) Haller, was the daughter of Rob- 
ert and Abigail (^Meach) Hewitt. She was 
born in iSoo, at Tolland, Windham county, 
Connecticut. She was married in January, 
1 8 19, to Charles A. Haller, who, by his first 
wife, Catherine Bruner, daughter of John 
Bruner, a farmer of Frederick county, 
Maryland, had four children: John, a 
farmer, who lived and died in Attica, Indi- 
ana; Henry, a wagonmaker, who also died 
at Attica, Indiana; Katherine, wife of Jacob 
Dovenbarger, of Washington county, Mary- 
land, but who came to Ogle county, and 
lived near Adeline ; and Samuel, who 
lived and died at Attica, Indiana. To 
Charles A. and wife seven children were 
born. Charles M. is the subject of this 
sketch. Jane Abigail married Francis Ham- 
ilton, of Maryland, who removed to Ogle 
county, Illinois, where he engaged in farm- 
ing. He later removed to Keokuk, Iowa. 
Sarah Ann is the widow of Jacob Flaut. 
She resides in Lanark, Illinois. James 
Robert died when about eleven months old. 
Louis lived to be twenty-two years old, and 
died in Pine Creek township, and was buried 
at Mt. Morris. George William, who had 
been a successful school teacher and insur- 
ance agent, died at Decatur, Illinois. Jo- 
seph is a physician engaged in practice at 
Lanark, Illinois. The mother of these 
children died at the home of her daughter, 




CHARLES M.HALLER. 



->>^: 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



19 



Sarah, at Lanark, Illinois, in 1882, and was 
buried in the cemetery at that place. 

Charles Haller, the grandfather of our 
subject, came to America from Germany in 
colonial days, paying for his passage by 
his labor. He landed in Baltimore, and 
from there went to Washington, and later 
to Loudoun county, Virginia, where Charles 
A. Haller, the father of our subject, was 
born. By occupation he was a farmer. He 
died and was buried at New Market, Mary- 
land. When a young man, Charles A. Hal- 
ler moved with his parents to Frederick 
county, Maryland, where he learned the 
wogon-maker's trade and conducted a shop. 
Later he moved to Boonesborough, Mar}'- 
land, on the National road. With his wife 
and four children, in May, 1846, he came to 
Ogle county, Illinois, and settled five and 
a half miles south of Mt. Morris, on the 
Grand Detour road, where he purchased 
one hundred and twenty acres of land. He 
lived there, however, only si.X'months, and 
died December 7, 1848, at the age of sev- 
enty years. 

The subject of this sketch was born in 
Boonesborough, Washington county, Mary- 
land, November 15, 1819, and there re- 
ceived his education in the subscription 
schools, in the meantime assisting his father 
in the cultivation of the thirty-three- 
acre tract of land which he owned, and 
in the manufacture of brick, in which 
he was engaged. After attaining his major- 
ity, he aided his old school-master, James 
Brown, in the management of his school, 
which had an attendance of one hundred 
scholars, and engaged in their instruction. 

In April, 1846, when twenty-seven years 

old, he was united in marriage with Miss 

Elizabeth Nikirk, daughter of Samuel 

Nikirk, a carpet weaver in the town of 
2 



Boonesborough, Maryland, where she was 
born, educated, and grew to womanhood. 
The month after his marriage, in company 
with his parents and brothers and sisters, he 
brought his young bride to Ogle county. 
They left Boonesborough May 21, 1846, 
their household goods in a two-horse wagon, 
and a light wagon with accommodation for 
si.x persons, the younger children finding 
place in the wagon with the furniture. 
Their trip overland took just six weeks, and 
they arrived near Mt. Morris, their destina- 
tion, July 3, 1846, and immediately set 
about erecting a house of four rooms, two 
stories high, the lumber for the construction 
of which our subject had to get in Chicago. 
He set out on Monday morning for Chicago 
and arrived home the following Monday. 
Those were the days of "ox team transpor- 
tation," when the traveler cooked for him- 
self along the roadside, slept in his wagon, 
and whistled a song along the lonesome 
roads to keep himself company. 

Their little home erected, young Haller 
helped his mother and brothers the next 
year, but during the years 1847 and 1848 
he took charge of a school at Phelps' Grove, 
and in 1S48-9 taught the school on the 
Grand Detour road, near Mt. Morris. In 
the fall of 1850 he moved to West Grove 
and settled on eighty acres of land given 
him by his uncle, George W. Hewitt. He 
built a frame house and set about improv- 
ing the place, dividing his time, however, 
between school teaching and farming. He 
remained on that place until 1859, when he 
went to Forreston and engaged in general 
merchandising. Later he purchased a stock 
of drugs .from Frank Barker, now of Ro- 
chelle, and a former resident of Forreston, 
and still conducts the establishment under 
the management of his son, E. E. Haller. 



^o 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



To Mr. and Mrs. Haller seven children 
were born. Samuel Henry died when seven 
years old. Susan married John Mullen, but 
is now deceased. Charles Louis died at 
the age of three years. Theodore F. is the 
editor and proprietor of the Forreston Her- 
ald. George Louis is now deceased. 
Charles M. is now living at Portland, Ore- 
gon. Edward Everett is in the drug busi- 
ness at Forreston. The mother of these 
children died December 23, 1893, at the 
age of sixty-five years, and her remains were 
interred in the Hewitt cemetery at Forres- 
ton. 

Mr. Haller sawed the log and split the 
stakes used in laying out the town of For- 
reston in 1855, the town being laid out on 
the land of his uncle, George W. Hewitt, 
who had located a claim of eight hundred 
acres. The first house built in the place 
was a rude frame structure built by the rail- 
road company for a boarding house. Dr. 
Kingsbury was the first physician in Forres- 
ton. The first school teacher was Thomas 
J. Hewitt. Mr. Haller was selected as the 
first teacher, but having so much to do on 
his farm at the time, he secured the place 
for his cousin, Mr. Hewitt. The latter mar- 
ried Miss Fannie Rockwood, who was his 
assistant in the school. The first school 
building was just west of where the present 
school building now stands. It was a large 
frame structure and built under the super- 
vision of George W. Hewitt at a cost of 
about two thousand dollars. 

Mr. Haller cast his first vote at a special 
election in his native state, and his first 
presidential vote was cast in 1848 for Zach- 
ary Taylor, the Whig candidate. With the 
Whig party he continued to act until the 
organization of the Republican party, since 
which time he has given his support to the 



men and measures of that party. Relig- 
iously he is a Lutheran, and assisted in or- 
ganizing the Lutheran church in Forreston 
in 1858, and has since been an elder in the 
same. He aided and supervised the build- 
ing of the church which was dedicated July 
10, 1864. By the county court Mr. Haller 
was appointed justice of the peace, was 
then elected and served one year. He was 
later appointed notary public by the gov- 
ernor and filled the position twenty years. 
He was also township school treasurer si.x 
years. All in all, Mr. Haller has led an 
active life. He is well known throughout 
the county, and all who know him esteem 
him for his many excellent qualities of head 
and heart. 

ZIBA A. LANDERS, senior editor and 
proprietor of the Ogle County Repub- 
lican, Oregon, Illinois, was born March 21, 
1857, at Waukegan, Illinois, and is the son 
of Hezekiah M. and Permelia (Ivetchum) 
Landers, the former being a native of 
Canada, but who came to the United States 
in the 'forties, locating in Lake county, 
Illinois, where he engaged in farming. In 
1858 he removed to Dade county, Missouri, 
where he likewise engaged in agricultural 
pursuits. He remained in Missouri until 
1864, when he was driven out by the Con- 
federates, entailing on him a great loss of 
property. Leaving Missouri, he returned 
to Illinois in June, 1865, and located in 
Ogle county, in the town of Dement. 

The subject of this sketch was about 
eight years old when his parents left Mis- 
souri and he has a vivid recollection of that 
time and the conditions which compelled 
the family to leave. In the district schools 
of Ogle county he obtained his education, 
attending the same until he was fourteen 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



21 



years old, when he went out to earn his 
own living. Choosing the printer's trade, 
he commenced to learn the business with an 
Oregon mechanic, and after completing the 
trade he worked as a journeyman, in all 
a period of twelve years, when he engaged 
in merchandising, at which he continued for 
eight years, when he sold out and purchased 
the Creston Observer. This was in 1891, 
and he continued the publication of the 
paper until July, 1894, when he sold 
the establishment, and January i, 1895, he 
purchased the Ogle County Republican, in 
connection with E. L. Reed, which partner- 
ship continued until October, 1898, when 
Mr. Reed retired from the business and Mr. 
Frank C. Sorrel was duly installed in his 
position upon the Republican. 

Mr. Landers was married November 30, 
1881, to Miss Harriet P. Spickerman, daugh- 
ter of William and Sarah (Sherman) Spick- 
erman, both of whom were natives of 
Wayne county, New York, where Mrs. 
Landers was also born. Her parents came 
to Ogle county in 1870, her father engaging 
in farming. By this union four children 
have been born — Ernest D., Chester, Clif- 
ford and Sherman. Clifford died when one 
year old. 

Mr. and Mrs. Landers are members of 
the Methodist Episcopal church. Frater- 
nally, he is a member of Creston Lodge, 
No. 320, A. F. & A. M., and Rock River 
Chapter, No. 151, R. A. M. In politics he 
is a Republican, with which party he has 
been identified since attaining his majority, 
and served in the forty-first general assem- 
bly as sergeant-at-arms of the senate in a 
very creditable manner. He is at present a 
member of the Republican town committee 
of Oregon, and aids with voice and pen in 
promulgating the principles of his party. 



While residing at Creston he served as a 
member of the school board, and also held 
other official positions. 

The Ogle County Republican was founded 
in 1888 by Bemis & Wagoner, and is now 
conducted by Landers & Sorrel, who are 
first-class newspaper men, good writers and 
men of unimpeachable integrity. The pa- 
per is a six-column quarto, and in politics is 
uncompromisingly Republican. 



M 



ILTON BURRIGHT. a retired farmer 
residing in Oregon, is one of the old- 
est living settlers in Ogle county, having 
taken up his residence here shortly after he 
attained his majority. He was born near 
Schenectady, New York, December 25, 
181 5, and is the son of Cornelius Burright, 
and the grandson of John Burright, of whom 
little is known. Cornelius Burright was 
born in the Mohawk Valley, New York, and 
was by occupation a farmer, a calling that 
he pursued during his entire life. He mar- 
ried Olive Messenger, also a native of New 
York. She died in Licking oounty, Ohio, 
in 1S27, when about forty-five years old. 
Her father and mother lived to be one hun- 
dred and one hundred and three years, re- 
spectively. Some years after the death of 
his wife Cornelius Burright came to Ogle 
county and for twenty-five years prior to his 
death made his home with our subject. He 
died in August, 1875, at the age of ninety- 
eight years and seven months. 

W^hile he was yet an infant our subject's 
parents moved to Cuyahoga county, Ohio, 
and about 1823 moved to Licking county, 
in the same state. He was but twelve years 
old when his mother died, and the follow- 
ing year his father remarried, and from that 
time he had to make his own way in the 



22 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



world. For one season he worked on the 
Ohio canal, driving an ox team at twenty- 
five cents per day. For three seasons he 
worked in a brick yard in Franklin county, 
Ohio, and during the winter cut cord wood 
for use in the brick yard in the summer. 
He saved his money and in 1836 he walked 
one hundred miles to Van Wert county, 
Ohio, and entered eighty acres of timber 
land, which he held until after he came to 
Illinois. About this time he spent two 
winters in Mississippi and Louisiana, cutting 
wood for steamboats. He was an unusually 
good chopper, and on one occasion, with 
the assistance of three companions, cut 
twelve cords of wood in one day. On a 
wager, alone, he cut four and a half cords 
in a half day, a record which has probably 
never been beaten. His first summer in Illi- 
nois was spent in Grand Detour, and his 
second one in Dixon. 

In April, 1838, Mr. Burright bought a 
claim to three quarter-sections of land in 
Pine Rock township, and after remaining on 
the claim until the following August he went 
to Missouri to spend the winter, fearing the 
cold of northern Illinois. He went on 
south to Natchez, Mississippi, and later to 
Louisiana. In the spring of 1839 he re- 
turned to Ogle county, and has never felt 
the necessity of again leaving it. His farm 
he at once began to improve and from time 
to time he added to his original purchase 
until he once owned over one thousand acres 
of choice land. Much of this he disposed 
of to his children, retaining only two hun- 
dred and fifty-four acres. After living upon 
the farm for nearly a half century, he pur- 
chased a house and lot in Oregon and has 
since lived a retired life. 

Since coming to Ogle county, Mr. Bur- 
right has never lived under any but his owti 



roof. The first log house built upon his 
claim was a very rude affair. No stove was 
ever used, all cooking being done in the fire- 
place. The chimney was made of sticks, 
and his bedstead was of his own construc- 
tion and had but one leg. It was built in 
the corner of the cabin, two sides being 
fastened into the logs, one post or leg hold- 
ing up the other sides. Its springs were 
slats or "shakes" split out of oak logs, and 
were thin and elastic, taking the place of 
the modern woven wire springs. He later 
built a more commodious log house, and 
finally a fine brick house, which is the farm 
residence to-day. It was one of the first 
of its kind between St. Charles, Kane county, 
and Dixon, Lee county. 

With but little schooling in early life, 
Mr. Burright has made up for lost time by 
being an extensive reader. After marriage, 
his wife, who had a good education for that 
day, taught him, and his own natural ability 
and perseverance did the rest. His first 
two crops of grain he hauled to Chicago 
with ox teams, being several days on the 
road. Produce was then %ery low and pro- 
visions very high. 

Mr. Burright was first married October 
24, 1839, in Lafayette township. Ogle 
county, to Miss Susanna Drummond, born 
in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, Decem- 
ber 18, I 8 1 9, and a daughter of Andrew and 
Elizabeth (Loutzenheiser) Drummond. The 
latter, who attained the age of seventy-three 
years, was a daughter of Henry Loutzen- 
heiser, whose parents emigrated to the 
United States when he was but two years 
old. He married Judith Merchant, whose 
brother. Dr. Da\id Merchant, was a sur- 
geon in the Re\-olutionary war. Two other 
brothers were also surgeons, but were not 
in the Continental service. Andrew Drum- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



23 



mond was born in New York state, and 
came west in the fall of 1838. He was by 
occupation a farmer, and was quite promi- 
nent in the early days of the^ county. He 
was instrumental in organizing every school 
district between Ashton, Lee county, and 
Polo, feeing a man of superior education, 
he was of great service in that connection. 
For some years he served as postmaster of 
Ashton. His death occurred at the age of 
eighty-seven years. Of the eleven children 
born to Andrew and Elizabeth Drummond, 
four are yet living in Ogle county. Levi 
and Lewis are living in Pine Rock town- 
ship; Jackson resides in Lafayette township; 
and the present Mrs. Burright in Oregon. 

To our subject and his first wife nine 
children were born, two of whom died in in- 
fancy. Thomas Sheldon married Margaret 
Bailey, and they now reside in Dixon, Illi- 
nois, with their family of seven children. 
Sarah Olive married Jacob Acker, and with 
their fi\e children they live in Pine Rock 
township, John married Emma Ashbaugh, 
by whom he has had thirteen children. 
They reside in Iowa. Thornton lives in 
Chana. He first married Christine Dug- 
dale, by whom he had four children. His 
second wife was Miss Addie Lee, by whom 
he has one child. Albert lives in Pine Rock 
township, near the old home farm. He 
first married Armista Thurber, by whom he 
has two sons. He next married Mrs. [ulia 
Grimes, in'i Haymaker. Jeannette mar- 
ried Oscar Dugdale, and with their four 
children they live in Pine Rock township, 
adjoining the village of Chana. Mary mar- 
ried Charles Dailey, and they reside in Pine 
Rock township. They have had five chil- 
dren, three of whom are living. The 
mother of these children died August 24, 
1873. 



Mr. Burright's second marriage was sol- 
emnized February 10, 1875, when he wed- 
ded Mrs. Judith Rinker, a sister of his first 
wife, who was born in Licking county. 
Ohio. She was the widow of Alhanen Rink- 
er, a native of Louisville, Kentucky, and 
who died near Oregon, October 2, 1855, at 
the age of thirty years. He was the father 
of four children who lived to maturity. 
Wallace E. married Margaret Sutter, by 
whom he had seven children. He served 
in the Union army, during the Civil war, 
but was drowned in a river in Kansas in 
187S. Ellen married Robert Garrison, of 
Portland, Oregon, and they have four chil- 
dren. Frank married Annie Wicks, who 
died leaving three children. He lives in 
Clearfield, Iowa. Loretta A. married Henry 
Yates, who is engaged in the grocery trade 
at Chana, Illinois. They have one child. 

In politics Mr. Burright is a Republican. 
He has not been an office seeker, but has 
held several local offices, including school 
director, road commissioner, and township 
trustee. Fraternally he is a Mason, and re- 
ligiously he is identified with the Christian 
church, but there being no service held by 
that church in Oregon he attends the 
Methodist Episcopal church. His wife has 
been a church member since the age of fif- 
teen years, and is one of the only two orig- 
inal members of the first church organized 
in Pine Rock township. She has been an 
efticient teacher in the Sunday school for 
many years. At the age of sixteen she 
taught school at Lafayette Grove. She has 
now a bed of violets, the sprouts of which 
grew at the door of the first school which 
she attended when a girl. 

Mr. Burright has not only reared his 
own children in comfort, giving them good 
educations, but has reared several of his 



24 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



kindred who were left homeless, and is now 
educating his wife's grandson, a son of 
Frank Rinker. He is a man highly es- 
teemed for his works' sake. 



WILLIAM C. BUNN.— In this enlight- 
ened age when men of energy, indus- 
try and merit are rapidly pushing their way 
to the front, those who, by their own indi- 
vidual efforts, have won favor and fortune 
may properly claim recognition. Years ago, 
when the west was entering upon an era of 
growth and Ogle county was laying its foun- 
dation for future prosperity, there came 
thither from all parts of the country men 
poor but honest, and with sturdy independ- 
ence and a determination to succeed that 
justly entitled them to representation in the 
history of the great west. Among this now 
is Mr. Bunn, who has met with remarkable 
success in his business undertakings, and is 
now practically living retired in Byron. 

He was born on the lOth of February, 
1837, in Hunterdon county. New Jersey, of 
which county his father, John E. Bunn, was 
also a native. On attaining to man's es- 
tate the latter married Sarah Conover, who 
was born in New Jersey, in 1817. He con- 
tinued to successfully engage in farming in 
his native county until 1855, when he 
brought his family to Illinois, where he 
joined some New Jersey friends. For a few 
years he resided in Byron township. Ogle 
county, and then purchased land in Winne- 
bago county, where he developed a fine 
farm of two hundred and thirty acres, oper- 
ating the same for many years. He finally 
sold and in 1882 returned to Byron town- 
ship, Ogle county, where he died in 1892, 
at the ripe old age of eighty-two years. His 
wife had passed away in 1872 and both were 



laid to rest in the Stillman 'Valley cemetery. 
In the family of this worthy couple were 
thirteen children, four sons and nine daugh- 
ters, all of whom reached years of maturity. 
William C, of this review, is the oldest; 
Mary wedded Wesley Yard and is now de- 
ceased; A. M. resides on a farm in Byron 
township; Mrs. Sarah Powell is a widow; 
Anna is deceased; Henry died at the age of 
eighteen; Mrs. Lucinda Wells resides in 
Rockford, Illinois; Hannah is the wife of 
William Van Valzy, of Ogle county; Caro- 
line is the wife of Benjamin Anderson, who 
owns and occupies the old Bunn homestead; 
Jane married but is now deceased; Garrett 
is a farmer of Winnebago county; and Mar- 
tha is the wife of Henry Liggett, of Marcus, 
Iowa. 

William C. Bunn was reared in New 
Jersey and educated in its common schools. 
He came with the family to this state and 
assisted his father in opening up the farm, 
remaining with him until twenty-five years 
of age. In 1861 he was married, in Ogle 
county, to Miss Julia Jarver, a native of 
New York, who was brought to the county 
at the age of twelve years by her father, 
Anthony Jarver, a worthy pioneer of Byron 
township, where he reared his family. Four 
children have been born of their union: 
John, who is married and conducts the ele- 
vator and buys grain in Byron; Alma, wife 
of Homer Long, a business man of Mt. Car- 
roll, Carroll county, Illinois; Arthur, a busi- 
ness man of Myrtle, Ogle county; and 
George, who is employed in the Farmers & 
Merchants Bank, of Byron. 

For eight years after his marriage Mr. 
I5unn engaged in farming on rented land, 
but two years before the close of that period 
he purchased a half interest in a farm of 
two hundred acres, which he operated in 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



!5 



connection with the rented farm. In the 
spring of 1870 he located upon his place, 
but sold his interest in the same two years 
later and again became a renter. In 1872 
he bought an improved farm of two hun- 
dred acres in Marion township, to the fur- 
ther development and cultivation of which 
he devoted his energies for four years. He 
remodeled the house, enlarged the barn and 
made many other improvements which 
added to its value and attractive appearance. 
On account of impaired health he removed 
to Byron in the spring of 1S76, but three 
years later returned to the farm and con- 
tinued to follow agricultural pursuits until 
1886, when he rented his place and pur- 
chased residence property in the village 
where he still resides. He became inter- 
ested in the grain business, and four years 
later bought the elevator at Byron. He 
also began buying and shipping cattle and 
hogs on an extensive scale, and became a 
large dealer in flour, feed, salt, coal, etc. 
At one time Mr. Bunn was one of the 
heaviest depositors in the Byron Bank, but 
owing to a change of ownership and man- 
agement he became dissatisfied and decided 
to establish a bank of his own. Later the 
bank closed and a number of the depositors 
lost heavily. Since then the present Byron 
Bank has been started. Withdrawing from 
the former institution Mr. Bunn established, 
in 1891, the Farmers & Merchants Bank, 
which has since done a large and profitable 
business, and is one of the solid financial 
institutions of the county. Although our 
subject started out in life for himself in lim- 
ited circumstances he is now one of the 
most successful business men of the com- 
munity, and is the owner of much valuable 
real estate besides his business property, all 
of which has been acquired through his own 



well-directed efforts. At all times he sup- 
ports the principles of the Republican party 
by his ballot, and though he served as col- 
lector of Marion township at one time, he 
has never cared for political preferment. 
He is public-spirited and enterprising, giv- 
ing a liberal support to all measures which 
he believes calculated to advance the moral, 
intellectual or material welfare of his own 
town or county. 



F\V. HOWE, an enterprising business 
man and postmaster of Monroe Center, 
was born in Cherry Valley, Winnebago 
county, Illinois, November 28, 1S65, and is 
the son of Maynard and Susan (Foster) 
Howe, both of whom were natives of New 
York state, but who came west in an early 
day and settled in Cherry Valley, where the 
fatherengaged in the grain business, having a 
large elevator, and building up an extensive 
trade, there spent the remainder of his life. 
He was also engaged in the hardware trade 
for a time. His death occurred at Cherry 
\'alley some years since, and his widow later 
married T. M. Lee, a lumber merchant of 
Cherry Valley. Maynard and Susan (Fos- 
ter) Howe were the parents of two chil- 
dren, — Fannie, residing in Cherry \'alley, 
and our subject. 

In his native village our subject grew to 
manhood and attended the district school 
until sixteen years of age, when he found 
employment in the lumber-yard of his step- 
father, continuing with him for three years. 
While thus employed he learned telegraphy, 
and later secured a position with the Chi- 
cago & Northwestern railway, where he 
was employed about six months. He then 
purchased an interest in the lumber-yard 
with his stepfather, at Monroe Center, and 



S/UiK VALLEY COLLEGE 
LRC 



43Gi9 



26 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



later they purchased the hardware store of 
Hildebrand & Eychaner, since which time 
they have continued both lines of trade. In 
addition to his mercantile interests, Mr. 
Howe has an interest in a farm of two hun- 
dred acres near Cherry Valley, and has 
also considerable town property in Monroe 
Center. 

On the 1 2th of March, 1889, Mr. Howe 
was united in marriage with Miss Cora Alex- 
ander, of Monroe Center, and daughter of 
J. Alexander, and by this union two chil- 
dren have been born, — Maynard A. and 
Vera May. 

In politics Mr. Howe has always been a 
Republican and an earnest advocate of the 
principles of the party. For three years he 
served as town clerk of Monroe, and in 
1 896 and 1897 was assessor of the township. 
In April, 1897, he received his appointment 
as postmaster of Monroe, which position he 
fills in a most satisfactory manner. Frater- 
nally, he is a Mason, and also a member of 
the Modern Woodmen of America. In his 
local camp he has served as clerk for three 
years. He is also a member of the Home 
Forum and Knights of Pythias. Always 
interested in the public schools, he has given 
of his time to advance their interests, serv- 
ing three years as a school director. Re- 
ligiously, Mrs. Howe is a member of the 
Methodist Episcopal church, in the work of 
which she is deeply interested. As a busi- 
ness man Mr. Howe is thoroughly progress- 
ive and always up with the times. 



NOAH SPEAKER.— One of the busi- 
est, most energetic and most enter- 
prising citizens of Ogle county is Noah 
Speaker — the founder of Egan City. It 



was through his influence and determination 
that a station was established at that time 
and the people of the community owe to 
him a debt of gratitude which can never 
be repaid for it has proved of inestimable 
value to neighboring farmers. For over 
half a century he has taken a most promi- 
nent and active part in the development 
and upbuilding of the county, and has 
advanced its interests in every possible 
way. 

Mr. Speaker was born in Washington 
count}-, Mar}land, December 24, 1820, and 
on the paternal side is of German extrac- 
tion. His father, Samuel Speaker, was 
born about 1791, in Ohio, where the grand- 
father resided for a few years prior to lo- 
cating in Pennsylvania, but later in life he 
became a resident of Washington county, 
Maryland. Samuel Speaker was reared in 
Pennsylvania, and there married Miss Mar- 
garet Kretsinger. He was a carpenter and 
joiner by trade and followed contracting 
and building throughout his active life. He 
was a soldier of the war of 18 12 and 
received a land warrant for his serv- 
ices. In 1855 he joined his children in Ogle 
county, Illinois, and here spent his last 
years, dying in 1864. The death of his 
wife occurred in 1862. Their family, con- 
sisting of four sons and two daughters, were 
reared in Maryland. William, the eldest, 
came west in 1855 and settled in Stephen- 
son county, Illinois, where he died. Noah 
is the next in order of birth. Washington 
also came to Illinois in 1855, but afterward 
settled in Ohio, where his death occurred, 
but his remains were interred in Egan cem- 
etery, this count)'. Isaiah, a carpenter and 
joiner, resides in Toledo, Iowa. Eliza re- 
mained in Maryland, where she married and 
reared a family, but is now deceased. Mary 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



27 



Ann, also deceased, married and settled in 
Mt. Morris, Illinois. 

Noah Speaker is wholly a self-educated 
man as he had no school advantages. In 
May, 1844, he came to Ogle county, driving 
a team across the country for Samuel Rine- 
hart, who settled in Adeline. Here our 
subject worked by the month for William 
Hopwood for four years on his farm near 
Oregon, and in 1S49 returned to his native 
county, where he was united in marriage 
with Miss Catherine Ann Garvin. The fol- 
lowing year he again came to Ogle county 
and made a permanent location. He had 
previously entered a tract of forty acres, 
where he now resides and after his marriage 
rented a little house near his land. While 
breaking and improving his property he 
worked at anything by which he could earn 
a livelihood and in this way secured a start 
in life. In 1853 he built a house upon his 
place, and afterwards bought an adjoining 
forty acres. He now has a large, neat and 
substantial residence, good outbuildings, and, 
in fact, all of the conveniences and acces- 
sories of a model farm of the nineteenth 
century. Two years after the railroad was 
laid out he made an effort to get a station 
established, and, after a hard struggle, suc- 
ceeded. It was located near the northeast 
corner of his place by J. M. Egan, a railroad 
official, and was named in honor of that 
gentleman. Mr. Speaker laid out the town 
and has since sold many lots and has suc- 
ceeded in founding a thriving little village 
which is a credit to him. 

He has been called upon to mourn the 
loss of his estimable wife, who died April 6, 
1895, and was laid to rest in Egan ceme- 
tery. To them were born four children, 
namely: William, a successful physician of 

Manson, Iowa; Alice, wife of John Harmon, 
3 



of Haldane, Illinois; Rosa, wife of W. W. 
Williams, of Des Moines, Iowa; and Marian, 
deceased wife of Newton Harmon. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Speaker 
has been a life-long Democrat, casting his 
first presidential vote for Martin Van Buren 
in 1836. For si.xteen years he was an effi- 
cient member of the school board of Egan, 
but has never sought nor desired official 
honors, preferring to give his entire atten- 
tion to his business interests. As a public- 
spirited, enterprising citizen, he certainly 
deserves honorable mention in a work of 
this kind, and his many friends in Ogle 
county will read with interest this brief 
sketch of his life. 



SAMUEL S. McGUFFIN.— Among the 
prominent and enterprising men who 
are identified with Ogle county and its ad- 
vancement, belongs the subject of this re- 
view. His birth occurred in Canada on the 
23d of December, 1832, where he lived un- 
til his tenth year. He is a son of John 
and Margaret (Howard) McGuffin, who came 
to Illinois in 1843 and purchased one hun- 
dred and sixty acres in Ogle county. They 
were the parents of seven children, five of 
whom are living. Andrew is the second old- 
est. The second son, John, is a Method- 
ist minister in Chicago. Annie is the wife 
of Benjamin Canfield, a farmer in Ogle 
county. Sarah married Solomon Whitaker, 
also a farmer in Ogle county. Katie is the 
wife of Joseph Mossit and resides in Can- 
ada. The sixth child is the subject of this 
sketch. 

Samuel S. McGuffin worked for his fa- 
ther until i860, when he accepted a con- 
tract to clear and break a tract of farmland 
in Rockvale township, and received in pay- 



28 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ment one hundred and sixty acres on sec- 
tion 21, where he now resides, and the 
present fine residence, outbuildings, or- 
chards, fences, ornamental trees and general 
thrifty appearance, all bespeak the owner's 
enterprise and energy. In 1865 Mr. Mc- 
Guffin married Frances Elizabeth Griswold, 
who was born February 3, 1845, in Rock- 
vale township, which place has always been 
her home. Nine children have blessed this 
union and are here named in order of birth: 
Ida married Isaac Price, who is in the em- 
ploy of one of the Chicago railroad com- 
panies. Maud is living at home. May is 
the wife of R. L. Thomas, a farmer of Ogle 
county. Nellie, the fourth child, died in 
infancy. Maggie is the wife of Martin Ash- 
baugh, of Oregon. Blanch married George 
Crowell, of Pocahontas county, Iowa. Cath- 
erine is deceased. Talbot is at home aid- 
ing in the management of the home farm, 
and Edith Frances, the youngest, is also 
living at home. 

Mrs. McGuffiin is a daughter of George 
and Hannah (Jackson) Griswold, who came 
to Ogle county, in 1838, and settled in Or- 
egon. Her father is an Englishman and 
her mother a native of Boston. She is one 
of six chidren, namely: William, now de- 
ceased; Henry, a well-to-do banker of Man- 
son, Iowa, now deceased; Mary, who died 
in infancy; Harvey, a farmer and stock- 
dealer of Rockvale township; Alice, the wife 
of A. W. Price, a dental surgeon and a 
large property-owner of Pine Creek town- 
ship. Mrs. McGuffin's brother enlisted with 
the Seventy-fourth Illinois Volunteer In- 
fantry and was wounded in the battle of 
of Shiloh. Her uncle, Charles H. Jackson, 
served with distinction throughout the Civil 
war. 

. Mr. McGuffin cast his first vote for Abra- 



ham Lincoln, but is an independent voter 
rather than a party man, voting his convic- 
tions without reference to the politics of 
the candidate. He has at all times been an 
advocate of good roads, and his ideas, which 
he put into practice during his term of town- 
ship trustee, did not receive the endorse- 
ment of his fellow citizens. The wisdom of 
his opinions in this particular is now every- 
where apparent, and his ideas and sugges- 
tions, while in "advance of his time," are 
now being rapidly carried out. Mr. and 
Mrs. McGuffin are surrounded by a bright 
and intelligent family, each member of 
which has displayed marked taste for edu- 
cational pursuits, all the girls adopting the 
profession of school teaching. They are 
active members of the Methodist church, 
and the high esteem in which they have 
always been held, is the reward for upright- 
ness, integrity and sociability in their rela- 
tions to all. 



DENNIS SULLIVAN, the agreeable, 
accommodating and efficient agent and 
telegraph operator for the Milwaukee & St. 
Paul railroad at Harper, is a native son of 
Illinois, born in Winnebago county, Decem- 
ber 31, 1857, a son of Dennis Sullivan, Sr. , 
who died just prior to the birth of our sub- 
ject. The mother later removed to Mt. 
Carroll, Illinois, where her son grew to man- 
hood, and completed his education in the 
Mt. Carroll high school. He then worked 
on a farm for a short time, and subsequently 
entered the service of the Milwaukee & 
St. Paul railroad as brakeman for a few 
months. He next entered the Mt. Carroll 
office, where he assisted the agent and 
learned telegraphy, remaining there about 
three years, during which time he became 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



29 



an expert operator. On the 1st of August, 
1887, he was given the position of night 
operator at Harper, and after three years 
and three months spent here, he went to 
Galewood, where he was agent and operator 
for two years. On the 28th ol July, 1S92, 
he was again transferred to Harper, where 
he has since served as operator and agent 
to the entire satisfaction of the company 
and the general public. 

At Freeport, Illinois, July 2, 18S9, was 
celebrated the marriage of Mr. Sullivan and 
Miss Catherine Lang, who was born, reared 
and educated in Forreston, and they have be- 
come the parents of three children, namely; 
Daniel H., Floyd D. and Helen S. Since 
attaining his majority, Mr. Sullivan has been 
an ardent supporter of the Republican party, 
having cast his first presidential vote for 
James A. Garfield, but he has never been 
an aspirant for office. He is a wide-awake, 
energetic business man and since coming to 
Harper has bought lots and erected two 
neat and substantial residences thereon. In 
social as well as business circles he stands 
deservedly high, as he is pleasant, genial 
and affable and makes friends readily. 



JOHN WATERBURY CLINTON, editor 
and proprietor of the Ogle County 
Press, Polo, was born in Andes, Delaware 
county. New York, and is the son of George 
N. and Jane A. (Gibbs) Clinton. On his 
father's side he traces his ancestry to Jo- 
seph Clinton, his great-grandfather, of New 
Canaan, Connecticut, who married Phrebe 
Benedict. Their son, Joseph Benedict Clin- 
ton, married Abigail Camp, and they were 
the parents of George Nelson Clinton, the 
father of our subject. On his mother's 
side he goes back to his grandfather, Phineas 



Gibbs, of Andes, New York, who was a na- 
tive of Massachusetts, and who married 
Anna Thompson, daughter of John Thomp- 
son, of Andes, New York, who was in re- 
ligion, a Quaker. Joseph Benedict Clinton 
was a soldier in the Revolutionary war, in 
the First Connecticut Line, under Colonel 
Webb. He died in 1828. 

George N. Clinton was a shoemaker by 
trade, but in his native city engaged in the 
general mercantile trade, having a small 
general store. He was for a time postmas- 
ter of the place. In the winter of 1839- 
40, he came to Ogle county and purchased a 
settlers' claim of one hundred and sixty acres 
of prairie land and forty acres of timber, then 
returned east, with a view of returning and 
making the claim his permanent home. On 
account of the failing health of his wife, he 
abandoned the idea, losing the amount paid 
for the claim. In 1870, he came once more 
to the county, but only on a visit to his 
son. The changes wrought in the country 
in the thirty years he could scarcely real- 
ize. His death occurred in his home at 
Andes, New York, in June, 1883. His 
good wife preceded him many years, dying 
in 1847. 

The subject of this sketch received an 
academic education in his native state, 
where he engaged in teaching until October, 
1857, when he came to Polo. During the 
ensuing winter he taught the school in Buf- 
falo Grove, and the next summer taught a 
select school in the old seminary. He was 
afterward employed as a teacher in the 
Buffalo, Forreston and Polo schools until 
1865, when he became editor and proprie- 
tor of the Polo Press, of which he is sole 
proprieter. He was also publisher and pro- 
prietor of the Poultry Argus, and the Fores- 
ton Journal, the predecessor of the Herald, 



30 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of the former during 1875-6, and the latter 
1 87 1-4. He has held the position of town 
clerk and assistant supervisor of Buffalo 
township, and was postmaster at Polo for 
eight years, from 1875 to 1883. 

Mr. Clinton is known throughout the 
state as a newspaper man, and has been con- 
nected with the Illinois Press Association 
since 1869. He has been one of its active 
members, serving it as treasurer from 1873 
to 1875, and from 1876 to 1881. In 
February, 1883, he was elected president 
of the Association and served one year. 
He has been elected several times a dele- 
gate from the Illinois Press Association to 
the National Association. 

On the 24th of January, 1861, Mr. Clin- 
ton was united in marriage with Miss Carrie 
A. Perkins, a native of Delhi, Delaware 
county, New York, and a daughter of Dea- 
con Timothy and Sarah (Veghte) Perkins. 
Timothy Perkins was the son of Rufus, and 
grandson of Timothy Perkins, who were 
natives of Massachusetts. Timothy Per- 
kins, the father of Mrs. Clinton, served in 
the war of 181 2, in Colonel Farrington's 
regiment, light infantry, and with his regi- 
ment was stationed near Fort Gainesworth. 
He married Sarah Veghte, daughter of John 
Veghte, of Johnstown, New York. In i 840 he 
came to Ogle county, where they spent the 
remainder of their lives, the mother dying 
in the spring of 1876, when about seventy- 
five years of age. The father died Novem- 
ber 23, 1884, aged ninety years. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Clinton seven children 
were born, of whom five are yet living — 
Evangeline, George P., John D., Edgar M. 
and Anna Lucile; Georgiana, the eldest. 
and Bertie F. died in infancy. The living 
children are all graduates of the Polo high 
school. George P. and John D. are gradu- 



ates of the University of Illinois, the former 
now serving as assistant botanist in the Illi- 
nois Experiment Station connected with 
the University of Illinois. Edgar M. is a 
student in Stanford University, California. 
In politics Mr. Clinton is a Republican, 
the Press being an advocate of Republican 
principles. He was initiated in the I. O. 
O. F., April 26, 1858. 



MARTIN L. ETTINGER, retired, is a 
gentleman who has retained a person- 
al association with the affairs of Rochelle 
and Oregon for almost half a century. His life 
has been one of honest endeavor, and due suc- 
cess has not been denied him. A man of un- 
swerving integrity and honor, who has a 
perfect appreciation of the higher ethics of 
life, he has gained the respect of his asso- 
ciates, and is distinctively one of the lead- 
ing citizens of Rochelle. He is a native of 
Pennsylvania, having been born in the vil- 
lage of Dover, York county, on the 23rd of 
December, 1832, where he was reared and 
educated, attending the common schools 
until his seventeenth year. After leaving 
school he worked at his trade, that of car- 
penter, for three years and in 1854 left the 
parental roof for the west, going direct to 
Oregon, Illinois, where he worked at his 
trade for four years. At this time he was 
appointed to a clerkship in the recorder's 
office, where he soon made himself at the 
necessary official, so much so, that at the 
breaking out of the Civil war, it was a most 
earnest request of the recortler that he re- 
frained from enlisting, which he had fully 
intended doing. He served as deputy clerk 
of the Circuit court until 1864, when he was 
elected county treasurer, serving four years. 
At the e.xpiration of this term he opened a 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



31 



music store dealing in pianos, organs, etc. 
Two years later he was appointed account- 
ant at Chicago, for the Chicago & Iowa 
Railroad Company, and in 1 877 he was 
appointed general ticket agent and auditor 
at Rochelle. He filled these two positions 
with great credit to himself, until 1887, 
since which time he has lived a retired life. 

Mr. Ettinger is the second of si.x chil- 
dren, three of whom are living. His fa- 
ther was Daniel M. Ettinger, who was 
born in Rossville, York county, Pennsyl- 
vania, and attained the age of eighty-five 
years. Mr. Ettinger, Sr., taught school for 
thirty-five years, a record few could equal, 
and dnring that time acted as local surveyor 
and engineer. In 1852 he came to Chicago 
and had charge of the engineering depart- 
ment of the Wisconsin division of the 
Chicago & Northwestern railroad. The 
following year he returned to York county, 
Pennsylvania, where he made his home un- 
til his death. In politics he was a Whig, 
and during the war was in charge of one of 
the underground railroads. He attended 
the Methodist Episcopal church, where he 
was a highly respected member. The 
mother of our subject was Lavina (Toomy) 
Ettinger, a daughter of Peter Toomy, a res- 
ident of Perry county, Pennsylvania, formerly 
of York county. 

In March, 1855, there occurred in Free- 
port, Illinois, the marriage of our subject 
to Miss Eleanor Cregier, of New Jersey, and 
they are the parents of seven children, three 
of whom are living: Frank, an engineer on 
the Chicago, Burlington & Ouincy railroad, 
is married, and has three children; Carrie, 
Charles and Blanche. The second chhld 
Banche, is the wife of B. W. Eraser, a 
merchant of Polo, Ilinois. Carrie, the 
youngest living child, is attending school at 



Rochelle. The paternal grandparents of 
our subject were Adam and Abbie (Miller) 
Ettinger. The former was born in York 
county, Pennsylvania, dying at the age of 
ninety-six, and was a minister of a denom- 
ination known as the Albrights. 

Martin L. Ettinger is an independent 
Democrat, and is serving as chairman of 
the county central committee. For a num- 
ber of years he was a justice of the peace. 
He was for two years a member of the city 
council of Rochelle and is a member of the 
Masonic fraternity. When the Ogle & Car- 
roll county railroad was projected he was 
instrumental in aiding the enterprise 
through, and was a stockholder and secre- 
tary of said company until it was absorbed 
by the Chicago, Burlington & Ouincy Rail- 
road Company. Most of his mature years 
have been spent in active railroad life, and 
he has that genial bearing common to rail- 
road officials. He has served as president 
of the Rochelle Whist club, and is voted 
by his friends as an all around good fellow. 



JOHN SMALL, a retired farmer living on 
section 20, Lincoln township, came to 
Ogle county in March, 1864, when in his 
eighteenth year. He was born in Washing- 
ton county, Maryland, Jul}' 28, 1S46, and 
is the son of John and Elizabeth (Wenrick) 
Small, the former a native of Maryland and 
the latter of Pennsylvania. The parents 
never came west, but both passed to their 
reward in Maryland, the father dying in 
1853, the mother surviving him a number 
of years, rearing and caring for their chil- 
dren. They were the parents of three sons 
and four daughters, who grew to mature 
years, but of the number our subject and 
his sister, Sarah J., wife of Henry A. Long, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of Scott county, Kansas, are the only sur- 
vivors. 

In his native county John Small re- 
mained until in his eighteenth year. His 
educational advantages were very limited, 
but he has made use of the opportunities he 
has had in mingling with the world until 
to-day he is a well-informed man. He came 
to Ogle county and here joined his sister, 
Mrs. Long, who, with her husband, had set- 
tled here some time previously. On his ar- 
rival he commenced farm work by the month 
and continued to be thus employed during 
the summer and fall of 1864. The war for 
the Union had now been in progress for 
nearly four years, and although not eighteen 
years old he determined to offer his services 
to his country. He enlisted March 8, 1865, 
"for one year or during the war," becom- 
ing a member of Company K, Fifteenth Illi- 
nois Volunteer Infantry, and joined his regi- 
ment, which was then at Raleigh, North 
Carolina. With his regiment he was en- 
gaged in doing guard duty along the rail- 
roads, and continued to be thus actively em- 
ployed until near the close of the war. He 
was later taken sick and was in Harewood 
hospital, at Washington City, for about three 
weeks. He received an honorable discharge 
July 13, 1865. 

Being within a few miles of his old home 
when discharged he concluded to visit rela- 
tives and friends in Maryland and Pennsyl- 
vania, and so spent delightfully a couple of 
weeks. He then returned to Ogle county 
and the following season worked by the 
month. He then purchased a threshing 
machine and for several years engaged in 
threshing grain, a business which was then 
fairly remunerative. On the 13th of Jan- 
uary, 1876, he was united in marriage with 
Miss Susanna Tschopp, who was born and 



reared in Ogle county, and daughter of 
Philip Tschopp, a native of Northumberland 
county, Pennsylvania, who there grew to 
manhood and married Susanna Heckart, 
also a native of Pennsylvania. They had a 
family of five daughters and one son who 
grew to mature years: Helen, who married 
John Rebuck, and died about 1881; Mrs. 
Catherine Weaver, of Mt. Morris township; 
Anna, wife of John Pagan, of Lincoln town- 
ship; Charles Henry, who resides at Hal- 
dane. Ogle county; Sarah, wife of Fred 
Martz, of Lincoln township; and Susanna, 
wife of our subject. Mr. Tschopp came 
with his family to Ogle county in 1854, and 
settled in Leaf River township and afterward 
moved to Mt. Morris township, that part 
which is now Lincoln township, and here 
spent the remainder of his life, dying in the 
fall of 1 89 1. His wife survives him and is 
now living in Forreston. 

After his marriage Mr. Small rented a 
farm in Mt. Morris township, and continued 
fo rent for several years. In 1883 he pur- 
chased a farm of one hundred and twenty 
acres in Lincoln township, to which he re- 
moved with his family, and on which they 
lived for nine years, in the meantime put- 
ting some substantial improvements upon 
the place. Selling that farm, he bought the 
place on which they now reside, which lies 
about three-fourths of a mile west of Hal- 
dane, and where he has since lived retired. 

Politically Mr. Small is a Republican, 
although he was reared a Democrat. He 
never, however, voted the Democratic 
ticket, but cast his first presidential ballot 
for General Grant in 1868. He has taken 
quite an active part in local politics and has 
been a delegate to various conventions of 
his party. He is at present a member of 
the Lincoln township central committee of 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



33 



his party, and of the county central com- 
mittee. For seven consecutive years he 
served as assessor of his township, and 
for nine years was a member of the school 
board, and president of the same for years. 
In all local afiairs he has been quite active. 
Since 1890 he has been secretary of the 
Lincoln Township Insurance Company. 
He is also secretary and treasurer of the 
Ogle County Farmers' Institute, and was a 
delegate to the Farmers' National Congress, 
which met at Fort Worth, Texas, Decem- 
ber 6, 1898. While gone he visited Galves- 
ton, Houston, Waco, San Antonio, and a 
number of other important points in the 
"Lone Star state." Fraternally he is a 
member of the G. A. R. , of Mt. Morris. In 
the thirty-five years he has been a resident 
of Ogle county he has made man}' friends, 
who esteem him as one worthy of their con- 
fidence. 

GEORGE H. ANDREW, one of the 
leading citizens of Ogle county, was 
born in Paine's Point, Pine Rock township, 
Ogle county, July 16, 1855. Heisasonof 
Nicholas and Margaret (Eychaner) Andrew, 
who were married in 1840. Nicholas An- 
drew was born in 18 18, on the Mohawk 
river. New York, where he was reared and 
educated, and followed the occupation of 
farming. Mrs. Andrew was born in 1824, 
in the state of New York, and is the daugh- 
ter of Conrad Eychaner, a farmer of New 
York state. Mr. Eychaner took an active 
part in the Mexican war, and served with 
much distinction. Shortly after his mar- 
riage he came to Illinois and was among 
the first settlers of the county. Mr. and 
Mrs. Andrew had five children. Daniel, 
the eldest and a prominent farmer of Ogle 
county, was born in 1S45 ^nd died in 1898. 



Franklin, born in March, 1S47, is at present 
road commissioner of Pine Rock township. 
Nathan, born in 1850, is a prominent mer- 
chant in the town of Oregon. Amanda was 
born in 1S52 and died in 1865. Mr. An- 
drew died in 1856, in the prime of life, be- 
ing only thirty-eight years of age. His wife 
is still living at Paine's Point, and enjoys 
a comfortable old age. 

The gentleman whose name heads this 
review, received his education in the com- 
mon school, and after completing his edu- 
cation took up the pursuit of farming, which 
he followed until 1879, when he removed 
to Ghana. On the nineteenth of Septem- 
ber, 1878, he was united in marriage to Ida 
M. Eddy, a daughter of Horace and Jane 
(Woodward) Eddy, natives of De Kalb 
county, where Mr. Eddy is a prominent 
farmer. To Mr. and Mrs. Andrew two 
children have been born: Eddy Glenn, at- 
tending school at Oregon; and Edith Lyle 
at home with her parents. At various 
times Mr. Andrew's popularity has been 
evinced by his election to office in township 
and county. He has for thirteen years ful- 
filled the office of township assessor, and in 
December, 1894, he vvas appointed deputy 
sheriff. In this capacity he served with 
great distinction, which led up to his elec- 
tion, in 1898, to the office of sheriff of Ogle 
county. After election he removed to Ore- 
gon, where he now resides. Mr. Andrew 
is a prominent member of the Masonic fra- 
ternity, Oregon Lodge, No. 420, Ivnights 
of Pythias, and the Modern Woodmen of 
America. He attained his majority in 1S76 
and cast his first vote for Rutherford B. 
Hayes, and each succeeding election, town, 
county, state or national he has given his 
support and ballot to the principles of the 
Republican platform. 



34 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



BENJAMIN T. HEDRICK, deceased, 
who was numbered among the early 
settlers of Ogle county, was a true repre- 
sentative of that class of men who enter into 
a new country, where hardships must be 
experienced, and by the sweat of their face, 
prepare the way, rendering the paths 
smooth for those who shall come after 
them. He was a native of Washington 
county, Maryland, and was born November 
I, 1812, in Sharpsburg. His father, George 
Hedrick, was a native of Pennsylvania, and 
was born February 3, 1779, while his 
mother was born in Washington county, 
Maryland, April 12, 1785. George Hed- 
rick was a mechanic, but on going to Mary- 
land engaged in agricultural pursuits on a 
large scale, owning several slaves. During 
the war of 1812 he served as a recruiting 
officer. He never came west, but died in 
Washington county, Maryland, April 21, 
1 83 1, his wife surviving him some eighteen 
years, dying January 10, 1859. They had 
a large family. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 
hood in his native county, and after passing 
through the common schools, entered Will- 
iamstown College, Virginia. On the 19th 
of October, 1841, he was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Anna Shryock, who was 
born October 21, 1808, in Hagerstown, 
Maryland. She was the daughter of George 
Shryock, born February 24, 1783, and 
Elizabeth (Lewis) Shryock, born August 5, 
1784. He was an officer, with the rank of 
captain, in the war of 1812, under General 
Ringold. He was the son of John Shryock, 
a representative of one of the old Maryland 
families. Elizabeth Lewis was the daugh- 
ter of Captain William Lewis, who served 
in the Revolutionary war, under Gen- 
eral Wayne. Anna Shryock was the old- 



est of a family of eight children born to 
George and Elizabeth Shryock. John Shry- 
ock was the son of Leonard Shryock, one of 
two brothers who emigrated to the colonies 
from one of the German states, probably 
about the year 1720, settling in York coun- 
ty, Pennsylvania. 

To B. T. and Anna Hedrick five chil- 
dren were born, one of whom died in in- 
fancy. George M. is married, and is en- 
gaged in farming in Lincoln township. Ogle 
county. He has five children. Lucy T. 
resides in Polo, where she is well known 
and universally esteemed. She is a mem- 
ber and an active worker in the Lutheran 
church. Walter K. is married and has four 
children. He also lives in Lincoln town- 
ship, where he is engaged in farming. Al- 
len M. is married and has had five children. 
He is now living in Santa Paula, California. 

In 1845 Mr. Hedrick came with his fam- 
ily to Ogle county and settled on a tract of 
land consisting of one hundred and twenty- 
acres, in Mt. Morris township, which he 
had previously purchased. He at once 
commenced its improvement, and in due 
time had a farm of which he had just rea- 
son to be proud. After living upon that 
farm for thirty-one years, and there rearing 
his children, he went to California for a stay 
of one year, and in 1879 moved to Polo, in 
order that he might live a retired life. He 
was quite a traveller, and thorough!)' en- 
joyed visiting various parts of his native 
land and associating with people of whom 
he had heard but had not seen. Success 
had crowned his efforts and he felt that he 
could take some enjoyment in life. At the 
time of his death he was the owner of sev- 
eral farms in Ogle county, and was consid- 
ered one of the county's best and most pros- 
jjerous citizens. 




B. T. HEDRICK. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



37 



In politics Mr. Hedrick was a Repub- 
lican, after the organization of the party. 
His experience with slavery made him a 
warm advocate of Republican principles, 
and he did not hesitate to express his con- 
victions. During the Civil war he was a 
strong Union man, and on one occasion 
when a draft was imminent, in company 
with Prof. Williamson, of Mt. Morris Col- 
lege, and the pastor of the Methodist Epis- 
copal church at Mt. Morris, went to Dixon 
and secured enough men to save the town- 
ship from a draft. He was a very capable 
and influential man and served the county 
well during that trying period. His death 
occurred July 19, 1886, his faithful wife 
having preceded him to their heavenly home 
some thirty years, having died July 27, 
1866. They were both devoted members 
of the Lutheran church, and died in the 
faith of a blessed resurrection. He was 
well known in every part of the county, and 
those knowing him had for him the greatest 
respect. He served his township as a mem- 
ber of the county board of supervisors, and 
in various local positions, and in whatever 
position he was asked to fill, he was ever 
faithful. 



EZRA H. EVANS.— In the respect that 
is accorded to men who have fought 
their own way to success through unfavor- 
able environments we find an unconscious 
recognition of the intrinsic worth of a char- 
acter which can not only endure so rough a 
test, but gain new strength through the dis- 
cipline. The following history sets forth 
briefly the steps by which our subject, now 
one of the substantial citizens of Byron, 
overcame the disadvantages of his early life. 

This worthy pioneer of Ogle county, was 
4 



born in Oneida county, New York, Novem- 
ber 22, 1829, and is a representative of an 
old New York family of Welsh descent. 
His father, Ozias Evans, and his grandfa- 
ther, Hugh Evans, were both natives of 
Oneida county. The former wedded Miss 
Mary Jeffords, who was born in Herkimer 
county. New York and was left an orphan 
in childhood. In Oneida county they reared 
their family, but finally removed to New 
Milford, Illinois, where they spent their last 
years. The father died, however, in Wis- 
consin, while on a visit, but was laid to rest 
by the side of his wife in Byron cemetery, 
her death having occurred several years pre- 
viously. To them were born six children, 
two sons and six daughters, of whom all are 
still living with the exception of the eldest, 
Mary, wife of Thomas Cook, and Sally and 
Sally 2d; Ezra H., of this sketch; Mrs. 
Nancy Soper is a widow living in California; 
Caroline is the wife of Robert Andrews, of 
Rockford, Illinois; Mrs. Martha Fisher is 
a widow living at Black River Falls, Wis- 
consin; and Erastus C. is living retired in 
Denver, Colorado. 

Ezra H. Evans was reared on a farm 
and received a good common-school educa- 
tion which well fitted him for the practical 
duties of life. He was eighteen years of 
age on coming to Ogle county in the fall of 
1848, but the following year was spent on a 
farm in Wisconsin. Returning to this 
county in 1849, he secured one hundred 
and sixty acres of land in Marion township 
with a land warrant. He located in New 
Milford and engaged in teaming for five 
years, hauling flour to Rockford. 

In August, 1850, Mr. Evans was married 
in Winnebago county, Illinois, to Miss Phebe 
Ann Osborn, a native of Northamptonshire, 
England, and a daughter of George Osborn, 



3S 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



who was born in the same shire and emi- 
grated to the new world about 1S31, locat- 
ing at Hudson, New York, where he spent 
four or five years. At the end of that time 
he bought a farm in Oneida county, where 
he made his home for eleven years, and on 
coming west, in 1846, settled in Winnebago 
county, Illinois, ten miles west of Rockford, 
where he purchased a partially improved 
farm and there spent his remaining days in 
agricultural pursuits. In his native land he 
married Hannah Webster, who died in 
Oneida county. New York, and he subse- 
quently married again. Mrs. Evans was 
the only daughter by the first marriage, but 
there were three sons, all of whom were 
born in England and are now deceased. All 
married and lived for a time in Illinois, but 
Joseph died in Texas, and William died in 
Ogle county, Illinois, and George died in 
California. Mrs. Evans was principally 
reared and educated in Oneida county. New 
York, being a young lady when the family 
removed to this state. By her marriage to 
our subject she has become the mother of 
three children: Fransula M. , wife of David 
Creager, a farmer of Byron township. Ogle 
county; Arthur A. died at the age of nine- 
teen months; and Earnest E., who has been 
in the drug business in Los Gatos, Cali- 
fornia, for the last three years. For about 
ten years he was engaged in Byron, Illinois, 
in drug business. In 1885 he married Miss 
Elizabeth Spalding, daughter of Phineas 
Spalding, of Beloit, Wisconsin. 

Mr. and Mrs. Evans spent the first year 
of their married life with her father, our 
subject assisting in the operation of the 
farm, and then removed to New Milford, 
where he engaged in teaming for five years. 
In 1857 they located on the land he had 
purchased in Marion township, moving down 



the river in a ferry boat in the spring of that 
year, when the streams were very high and 
the roads almost impassable. Mr. Evans 
built a frame house, fenced his land and 
began the development of his farm, which 
he successfully operated for about twelve 
years. He then sold the place and bought 
a residence in Byron, where he still resides. 
Three years after locating here he purchased 
a farm of fifty-five acres in Byron township, 
adjoining the village, and has since added 
to it a thirty-acre tract, all of which he op- 
erates. He also owns a well-improved and 
valuable farm of eighty acres on the north- 
ern line of the county in Byron township, 
and is to-daj' one of the most prosperous 
and successful citizens of the community, 
the result of his own industry, enterprise 
and good management. 

Politically Mr. Evans has been a sup- 
porter of the men and measures of the Re- 
publican party since casting his first vote for 
John C. Fremont in 1856, but he has never 
sought or cared for official honors, though 
he served as commissioner of highways in 
Byron township and as township trustee. 
Religiously his wife is a faithful member of 
the Congregational church of Byron, and 
socially he is one of the oldest members of 
the Masonic lodge at that place, in which 
he has served as senior warden and also be- 
longs to Rockford chapter, R. A. M. Mr. 
and Mrs. Evans spent the winter of 1896- 
97 on the Pacific slope, visiting their son 
and other relatives, including Mrs. Evans' 
brother's wife and family, and an uncle of 
Mr. Evans. They thoroughly enjoyed the 
trip and returned home by way of the 
Southern Pacific route, stopping in Te.xas 
for a time. They brought home with them 
a fine collection of mosses, shells, pebbles 
and other curios gathered on the beach of 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



39 



the Pacific. In 1S76 they spent four months 
in visiting the Centennial exposition at 
Philadelphia, and old friends in New York. 
They receive and merit the high regard of 
the entire community in which they live 
and have a host of warm friends throughout 
Ogle county, who will read with interest 
this short sketch of so worthy a couple. 



TIMOTHY W. ALDEN.— There are few 
men more worthy of representation in 
a work of this character than the subject of 
this sketch, who is now passing his declin- 
ing years in retirement from active labor on 
his farm on section 8, Leaf River township. 
His has been a long and busy career, rich 
with experience, and in which he has es- 
tablished himself in the esteem and confi- 
dence of all who know him. Since 1837 
he has been a resident of the county, and 
has taken an active part in its growth and 
development. 

This worthy pioneer was born in Brad- 
ford county, Pennsylvania, March 13, 1821, 
and is of the eighth generation from John 
Alden, clerk of Captain Miles Standish. 
The family is of English origin, and its first 
representative in this country was brought 
to our shores by the Mayflower. Timothy 
Alden, our subject's grandfather, was a na- 
tive of Massachusetts, and in 1801 removed 
with his family to Bradford county, Penn- 
sylvania, becoming one of its first settlers. 
The father of our subject, Adonijah Alden, 
was then about two years old, his birth hav- 
ing occurred in Massachusetts, in 1799, and 
in Bradford county he grew to manhood. 
He married Vesta York, a native of Penn- 
sylvania, and a daughter of Rev. Minor 
York, one of its pioneers. She was living 
in Wyoming at the time of the massacre 



and was a child of twelve years. Her fa- 
ther was away with the army, and her 
mother, with her children, got into a canoe 
and succeeded in slipping down the river 
unseen by the Indians. Mr. Alden settled 
at Durell, on the Susquehanna river, and 
continued to engage in farming in Bradford 
county for a number of years, but in 1837 
came by team to Ogle county, Illinois, and 
took up a claim in Marion township, two 
miles below Byron. He did not long en- 
joy his new home, however, for he died in 
the prime of life, in 1839, at the age of 
forty-eight years. His wife had passed 
away a few months previous, and a son and 
two daughters died the same year, all be- 
tween March and August, of 1839. The 
other seven children all reached years of 
maturity, and remained together on the 
farm for a few years. 

In his native state Timothy W. Alden 
had received fair school advantages. He 
aided in the development of the new farm 
in Ogle county, pre-empted the land and 
devoted his time to its cultivation and im- 
provement for five years. He then sold the 
claim and engaged in teaming and thresh- 
ing, having purchased a thresher, which he 
operated in season for ten years. At the 
end of that time he bought eighty acres of 
raw land in Leaf River township, and dur- 
ing the six years he resided thereon he 
placed it under cultivation and made many 
improvements. On selling the place in 1856 
he bought another tract of eighty acres of 
unimproved land, on which he has since 
made his home. To the original purchase 
he added one hundred and sixty acres, but 
has since sold forty acres, so that he now 
has two hundred acres, which he has placed 
under excellent cultivation, but now leaves 
the active management; of the farm to 



40 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



younger hands. His first home here he has 
enlarged and improved and there is spend- 
ing his decHning days in ease and quiet. 

In Byron township, Ogle county, in 1852, 
Mr. Alden married Miss Orpha Coolbaugh, 
also a native of Bradford county, Pennsyl- 
vania, and a daughter of Moses Coolbaugh, 
who was born in the same state. She came 
to this state with her parents when a young 
girl and died July 9, 1891, and was laid to 
rest in Byron cemetery. Thirteen children 
were born of this union and eleven are still 
living, namely: Professor Martin M., prin- 
cipal of the Kirkland, Illinois, schools; C. 
A., editor and proprietor of a paper pub- 
lished in Fulton, Illinois; Vista, wife of 
Frank Lindley, a farmer of Winnebago 
county, Illinois; Rev. David, minister of 
the Congregational church at Prophetstown, 
Illinois; Fred Grant, a resident of Winne- 
bago county; James, a farmer of Leaf River 
township; Nancy E., wife of Joseph Curtis, 
of Winnebago county; John and Emmett, 
both farmers of that county; and Lilly M., 
who is attending the nurses training school 
in Chicago. 

Mr. Alden cast his first presidential vote 
for the Whig candidate in 1844, and con- 
tinued to support that party until 1856, 
when he joined the ranks of the Republican 
party, voting for John C. Fremont, and has 
since fought under its banner. He has 
always taken an active and commendable 
interest in politics, but has never been a 
politician in the sense of office-seeking. 
When the Great Western railroad was built 
through the county, he took stock and 
helped to establish the elevator at Egan 
City, and at all times has been prominently 
identified with those interests calculated to 
promote the general welfare of the com- 
munity. In 1841 he united with the Con- 



gregational church at Byron, and assisted 
in building the house of worship, getting 
out the timber and hauling it to Byron, 
He has since transferred his membership to 
the church at Seward. The wonderful 
changes which have taken place in this 
region since his arrival here can scarcely be 
realized; the country at that time was wild 
and unimproved, but now are seen on every 
hand churches, schoolhouses, fine farms, 
thriving villages and cities, while the county 
is crossed and re-crossed by railroads and 
telegraphs. 



GEORGE W. GARNHART, who is liv- 
ing a retired life on his farm about two 
miles from Polo, on section 14, Buffalo 
township, is a well-known citizen of Ogle 
county, of which he has been a resident 
since 1849. He was born in Northumber- 
land county, Pennsylvania, December 13, 
1839, and is the son of John Garnhart, and 
a brother of Charles W. Garnhart, of Ogle 
county, whose family sketch appears else- 
where in this work. 

From his native county in Pennsylvania, 
Mr. Garnhart accompanied his parents to 
Ogle county, Illinois, the father locating in 
Marion township. In the public schools of 
Marion and White Rock townships. Ogle 
county, he received his primary education. 
Later he attended Franklin College, in In- 
diana, where he spent one year and a half 
in obtaining a higher education. Subse- 
quently he attended Parson Bros. Commer- 
cial College, at LaPorte, Indiana, for one 
year. In his youth he learned the carpen- 
ter's trade, which he followed some three 
or four years in LaPorte, but the greater 
part of his life has been spent in teaching 
in the public schools and in farming. While 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



41 



in Indiana, he spent some three j'ears as a 
teacher in the schools of that state. Re- 
turning to Ilhnois, he here engaged in teach- 
ing in the public schools, and as a profes- 
sional teacher continued to be employed for 
some years. He then purchased an im- 
proved farm in White Rock township, Ogle 
county, and there engaged in farming for a 
few years, then sold out and purchased the 
farm where he now resides in Buffalo town- 
ship. This farm was also improved, but 
on coming into possession he made further 
improvements to the place, and has it now 
under a high state of cultivation. The 
house was remodeled by him, good barns 
and outbuildings were erected, shade and 
ornamental trees set out, and the whole 
place transformed. 

Mr. Garnhart was married about 1S63, 
and is the father of three children, two sons 
and a daughter, Walter W. , Alwilda E. and 
Dewitt C. (deceased). Walter W. is a well 
educated young man, a graduate of Brown 
University, while the latter is also well ed- 
ucated, and is a teacher of music. 

Mr. Garnhart has been an earnest ad- 
vocate of the principles of the Republican 
party since its organization. His first pres- 
idential vote was cast for our first martyr 
president, Abraham Lincoln, and he has 
since voted for every presidential nominee 
of the party, including William McKinley. 
He has never asked or desired public office, 
having no inclinations in that respect. His 
interest in the cause of education has always 
been great, and some eighteen or twenty 
years of his life were passed as a teacher in 
the public schools, and about the same 
length of time as a member of the school 
board, and clerk of the school district. For 
a half century he has been a resident of the 
county and he has always been interested in 



its advancement. As a professional teach- 
er, as a farmer, and as a citizen, he has 
contributed his share to make the county 
one of the best in the great prairie state. 
He is well known as a man of sterling char- 
acter, and has the confidence and esteem of 
a large circle of friends. 



JACOB STEFFA is one of the old and 
honored citizens of Ogle county who 
has aided so materially in the development 
of this region from pioneer days. He is the 
owner of a fine farm of one hundred and 
twenty acres on section 8, Rockvale town- 
ship, on which he has successfully engaged 
in agricultural pursuits for many years. 

Mr. Steffa is a native of Maryland, born 
in Washington county, February 21, 18 18, 
and a son of William and Elizabeth (Oto- 
alt) Steffa, the former born in Washington 
county, and the latter in Hagerstown, 
Maryland. The father was a farmer by oc- 
cupation. In their family were ten children, 
of whom our subject is the eldest, the others 
being John, a resident of Pomona, Califor- 
nia; Joseph, of Mt. Morris, Illinois; David, 
who is living with his son, William Steffa, 
in Rockvale township. Ogle county; Solo- 
mon; William; Elizabeth. Matilda and Mary, 
deceased; and Hannah, who is now living in 
Iowa. 

During his boyhood and youth Jacob 
Steffa attended the district schools during 
the winter months, while during the summer 
season he assisted his father in the labors 
of the farm until eighteen years of age 
when he left school and began working for 
Christly Hershe, with whom he remained 
for two years. The following two years 
were spent on a farm near Sharpsburg, 
Maryland, on the Potomac river, at the end 



42 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of which time he came west by team, ar- 
riving in Ogle county, October 6, 1844, 
after being a month upon the road. His 
brother had located here the spring previous 
and was then working for John Phelps. 
When our subject and his father arrived, 
they rented the Phelps farm of three hun- 
dred and twenty acres, which they operated 
for three years and then the son leased the 
Washington Phelps farm of one hundred 
and sixty acres for two years. At the end 
of that time he made his first purchase, con- 
sisting of eighty acres, but subsequently sold 
that place and bought his present farm of 
one hundred and twenty acres in Rockvale 
township, upon which he has made many 
valuable and useful improvements which 
add greatly to its value and attractive appear- 
ance. As a citizen he has the respect and 
confidence of all who know him, and his 
friends are many throughout the communtiy 
in which he makes his home. 

On the 31st of January, 1831, occurred 
the marriage of Mr. Steffa and Miss Mary 
Houze, who was born in Maryland, Sep- 
tember 28, 1822, a daughter of Edward and 
Lydia (Funk) Houze, also natives of that 
state. The children born of this union are 
as follows: Daniel, born March 31, 1841, 
was one of the boys in blue during the Civil 
war, a member of the Thirty-fourth Illinois 
\'olunteer Infantry, and is now living in 
Colorado. He married first Elizabeth Ran- 
dall, and for his second wife wedded Mrs. 
Browning, by whom he has three children. 
Sarah Margaret, born March 11, 1843, mar- 
ried Jacob IJolembaugh, who was killed 
during the Civil war, and she later married 
a Mr. Morse, by whom she has two chil- 
dren. She is also living in Colorado. Sam- 
uel, born January 7, 1845, enlisted in the 
Thirty-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry 



during the Rebellion and served until hos- 
tilities ceased, taking part in many impor- 
tant battles and the celebrated march to 
the sea. He married Charlotte McDonald, 
by whom he has two children, and they live 
at Rockford, Illinois. Reuben Jonathan, 
born March 25, 1847, married Mrs. Thema 
Myers, by whom he has one child, and they 
live in Redwing, Minnesota. Ann Celesta, 
born September 28, 1850, married Thomas 
Mallory and lives in Chicago. William 
Arthur, born July 8, 1852, married Lorina 
Waite, by whom he has two children, and 
they live in Oregon, Ogle county. Mary 
Alice, born August 31, 1854, married Jacob 
Hemmer. She has two children: Harry 
Wilbur, born July 12, 1882; and Wilfred, 
born October 27, 1884. 

In his political views Mr. Steffa is a Re- 
publican, and he has ever taken an active 
and commendable interest in political af- 
fairs, serving as school director several 
terms and as road commissioner for one 
term of three years, to the entire satisfac- 
tion of all concerned. 



DANIEL H. TOBIAS, who resides on 
section 2, Lincoln township, has been 
a resident of Ogle county almost a third of 
a century, coming here in March, 1866. 
The farm which he owns and operates con- 
tains two hundred and eighty acres of well 
improved land and is one of the best in Lin- 
coln township. He is a native of Dauphin 
count}', Pennsylvania, about thirty-four 
miles from Harrisburg, and was born April 
30, 1843, and is a son of John Tobias, 
a native of the same county and state, and 
the grandson of Daniel Tobias. 

John Tobias grew to manhood in his na- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



43 



tive county and in his youth learned the 
stone mason's trade, and followed that oc- 
cupation, in connection with mining during 
his entire life. He was twice married, his 
first wife being Miss Nancy Rowe, also a na- 
tive of Dauphin county, Pennsylvania, and 
daughter of Wendell Rowe, of the same 
county. She became the mother of five 
sons, four of whom grew to manhood, and 
three now living: Daniel H., our subject; 
Henry, residing in Schuylkill county, Penn- 
sylvania; and John, a resident of Northum- 
berland county, in the same state. A few 
years after his marriage, John Tobias re- 
moved with his family to Schuylkill county, 
Pennsylvania, where he engaged at his trade 
and also at mining. His first wife, the 
mother of the children named, died in 1850, 
but he survived her many years, dying in 
1896 when about seventy-five years old. 

In his native county our subject spent 
his boyhood and youth, and in its common 
schools obtained his education, attending 
usually in the winter months and farming 
in the summer. He attained his majority 
during the trying period of the Civil war, 
and on the 19th of September, 1864, at 
Harrisburg, he enlisted in Company H, 
Two Hundred and Tenth Pennsylvania \'ol- 
unteer Infantry, and served until the close 
of the war, his regiment forming a part of 
the Fifth Corps, army of the Potomac. He 
participated in the two battles at Hatches 
Run, Gravelly Run, Five Forks, Appomat- 
tox Court House, and was present at the 
time of Lee's surrender, April 9, 1865. In 
addition to the engagements mentioned he 
was in several minor ones, and participat- 
ed in the grand review at Washington at 
the close of the war. The regiment went 
out with nine hundred and sixty men and 
returned with four hundred and ninety- 



three. Of the remainder, some were killed 
in battle, and some wounded or otherwise 
disabled. Mr. Tobias received several 
shots through his clothing, but was never 
wounded. 

On receiving his discharge, Mr. Tobias 
returned to his old home and engaged in 
teaming until the spring of 1866, when he 
came to Ogle county in company with 
Aaron Meyers, who is a substantial farmer 
of Lincoln township. After coming here, 
for two years he worked by the month for 
various persons. He was married in Lin- 
coln township. Ogle county, December 26, 
1867, to Margaret Meyers, daughter of 
Jacob M. Meyers, who was an Ogle county 
pioneer, coming here, in 1837, from Boons- 
borough, Maryland. He was, however, a 
native of Berks county, Pennsylvania, born 
in 1799, but reared in Dauphin county, go- 
ing to Maryland a young man of nineteen. 
He was a stonemason by trade, an occupa- 
tion that he followed while residing in Mary- 
land. He married Elizabeth Gloss, a native 
of Washington county, Maryland, and daugh- 
ter of Lewis Gloss, a German ancestry. On 
coming to Ogle county, Jacob Meyers lo- 
cated in that part of Mt. Morris township 
which has since been organized under the 
name of Lincoln, where he bought a claim 
of eight hundred acres, entered the land 
when it came into market, and became one 
of the most substantial farmers of the 
county. He died in Lincoln township Au- 
gust 26, 1877, at the age of seventy-eight 
years. His wife passed away April 6, of 
the same year. Their remains were interred 
in the West Grove cemetery. They were 
the parents of eleven children, of whom one 
son and six daughters grew to mature years, 
though but three are now living, — Sarah, 
wife of Daniel Eager, of Forreston; Ellen, 



44 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



wife of John Mace, a farmer of Lincoln 
township; and Margaret, wife of our sub- 
ject. Jacob S. Meyers, the son, who grew 
to manhood, enlisted in the One Hundred 
and Forty-second Illinois Volunteer Infantry, 
was taken sick while in the service, brought 
home and died October 4, 1864. 

After their marriage Mr. and Mrs. To- 
bias commenced life on the old Myers home- 
stead, where Mrs. Myers was born and 
reared. They lived on that farm until the 
spring of 1897, when Mr. Tobias purchased 
his present farm to which they at once re- 
moved. They are the parents of three 
daughters. Emma Luella is the wife of 
Samuel W. Hamilton, a farmer of Lincoln 
township. Ella Viola, who was well edu- 
cated in the schools of Forreston and Ore- 
gon, is now a successful teacher in the 
schools of Ogle county for about four years. 
Edna Agnes is a student in the home school. 
Politically, Mr. Tobias is a stanch Repub- 
lican, and has voted for ten presidential 
candidates of that party. He has never 
cared for public office, but for the reason 
that he has always taken a deep interest in 
the public schools, he has served on the 
school board for eighteen years, a portion 
of which time he has been president of the 
board. He has also served as district clerk 
and one term as road commissioner. He 
and his wife are members of the Reformed 
church at West Grove, and take a lively 
interest in the work of the church. Both 
are highly esteemed wherever known. Mrs. 
Tobias has been a life-long resident of the 
township, while Mr. Tobias has given some 
thirty-three years of his life to the building 
up and development of his adopted county. 
Fraternal!}', he is a member of the G. A. R. 
Post, No. 116, of Oregon, and of White 
Oak Camp, No. 667, M. W. A., of Forreston. 



ASAPH M. TRUMBULL.— The subject 
of this review is one whose history 
touches the pioneer epoch in the annals of 
the state of Illinois and whose days have 
been an integral part of that indissoluble 
chain which links the early formative period 
with that of later-day progress and prosper- 
ity. Not alone is there particular interest 
attaching to his career as one of the pio- 
neers of Ogle county, but in reviewing his 
genealogical record we find his lineage trac- 
ing back to the colonial history of the na- 
tion and to that period which marked the 
inception of the grandest republic the world 
has ever known. 

Mr. Trumbull was born near Hartford, 
Connecticut, September 13, 18 13, and is a 
worthy representative of an old and hon- 
ored New England family, which was founded 
in this country by three brothers of English 
birth. One of these, Governor Jonathan 
Trumbull, of Connecticut, was a great friend 
of General Washington, who always made 
his home headquarters when in that region, 
and it is believed that the term "Brother 
Jonathan " originated from this friendship. 
Four generations of the family, including 
our subject, were born in the same house on 
the old Trumbull homestead in Connecticut. 
Among these was the grandfather, David 
Trumbull, and the father, James Trumbull, 
who spent their entire life there engaged in 
agricultural pursuits. He served as a ser- 
geant in the war of 1812, and died at the 
age of forty-two years, honored and re- 
spected by all who knew him. In early life 
he married Jane Watson also a native of 
the Nutmeg state, who survived him a num- 
ber of years and died on the old homestead. 
To them were born nine children, but only 
two are now living: Mrs. Fanny Weller, a 
widow, now ninety-three years of age, who 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



45 



resides in Waterbury, Connecticut; and 
Asaph M., our subject. 

Until he attained his majority Asaph M. 
Trumbull remained with his mother and 
aided in the operation of the home farm. 
His educational advantages were good for 
those days, as he attended both the com- 
mon schools and academies, and for two 
winter terms he engaged in teaching. When 
a young man he went to Milton, Union 
county, Pennsylvania, where he engaged in 
the manufacture of brooms for two years. 
While there he was married in 183S to Miss 
Sarah Gotshall, a native of Milton. The 
following year he purchased a team and 
wagon, which he loaded with his effects, 
and in May started for Illinois, being four 
weeks in making the journey. He joined 
two brothers, David and Joseph, who had 
settled in Ogle county early that spring, and 
he secured a claim of one hundred and forty 
acres near Byron. He spent the first win- 
ter in a log cabin on the banks of a creek, 
but in the spring that stream overflowed its 
banks, and as they were threatened with 
drowning they were forced to leave, moving 
out of their little home in a boat. Mr. 
Trumbull then erected a house and barn on 
higher ground and proceeded to break his 
land preparatory to planting crops. Two 
years later he traded that place for a farm 
in Marion township, of one hundred and 
ninety acres, which were slightly improved. 
He planted an orchard, erected a comforta- 
ble residence and good outbuildings, and for 
forty years devoted his energies to the culti- 
vation of his land, making it one of the 
best and most desirable farms of the town- 
ship. In 1 88 1 he rented the place and 
moved to Stillman Valley, where he built a 
good home and has since lived retired from 
active labor, though he still looks after his 



farm and other interests. He has given his 
support to a number of business enterprises 
that have done much for the development 
and prosperity of this part of the county. 

Soon after coming to Illinois Mr. Trum- 
bull's first wife died, and he subsequently 
wedded Mary Patrick, who was a native of 
Massachusetts, and when young came west 
with her father, Samuel Patrick, an early 
settler of Ogle county. She died on the 
farm in Marion township, and of the three 
children born to them one died at the age 
of eleven years and one at the age of two. 
The only one now living, George Trumbull, 
a farmer of Marion township, is married and 
has two children. On the 6th of August, 
1 861, in Camden, Oneida county. New 
York, Mr. Trumbull was united in marriage 
with Miss Honor Preston, who was born, 
reared and educated at that place, and is a 
daughter of Rossiter and Orril (Curtis) 
Preston, both natives of Connecticut. They 
later lived for a number of years in Cam- 
den, New York, finally removing to Rock- 
ford, Illinois. 

Politically Mr. Trumbull was an old- 
line Whig and cast his first presidential 
ballot for Martin Van Buren, but on the or- 
ganization of the Republican party he joined 
its ranks, voting for John C. Fremont in 
1856, and has never failed to support each 
presidential candidate of that party since 
then. He has ever used his influence to- 
ward securing good schools and for a num- 
ber of years was a most efficient member of 
the school board. He has also served his 
fellow citizens in a most creditable and sat- 
isfactory manner as supervisor, township 
clerk and assessor for a few years each. In 
early life he joined the Presbyterian church, 
but after coming to this county he united 
with the Congregational church at Byron. 



46 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



On his removal to Stillman Valley he be- 
came connected with the Congregational 
church at that place, has taken an active 
part in church and Sabbath school work, 
and for thirty years has been a member of 
the official board, being a deacon at the 
present time. His life is exemplary in 
many respects and he has ever supported 
those interests which are calculated to up- 
lift and benefit humanity, while his own 
high moral worth is deserving of the high- 
est commendation. 



GEORGE W. SHAFER, who resides on 
section lo, Buffalo township, has been 
a resident of Ogle county since October, 
1867. He was born in Delaware county. 
New York, September 2, 1843, and is of 
German ancestry, the family being early 
settlers, however, of Duchess county, New 
York, from which county the grandfather 
of our subject removed to Delaware coun- 
ty, in the same state, becoming one of the 
pioneers of that county. Strange as it may 
seem to those who think of the east as old 
settled country, when Henry Shafer moved 
to Delaware county they were compelled 
to go to Kingston, a distance of sixty miles, 
on horseback, to get their milling done. 

Henry S. Shafer, the son of Henry 
Shafer and the father of our subject, was 
born in Delaware county, March 19, 18 14, 
and on his father's farm grew to manhood 
and there married Deborah Shafer, daugh- 
ter of Adam Shafer, also a pioneer of that 
county. They were the parents of three sons 
and four daughters, as follows: Adam H., 
of Binghamton, New York; George W., of 
this review; Juliana, wife of Daniel Water- 
bury, of Polo; Ransom, a business man of 
Chicago; Eliff, wife of Henry C. Wood, of 



Binghamton, New York; Elizabeth, wife of 
D. Kelley, of Walton, New York; and Celia, 
who died in 1876. Both parents are now 
deceased, the mother dying in May, 1896, 
and the father in March, 1897. 

George W. Shafer grew to manhood in 
Delaware county, New York, and was edu- 
cated in the common schools of his native 
county. He remained at home, assisting 
in the cultivation of the home farm until 
after he attained his majority, but with that 
desire to better himself in life, he came to 
Ogle county in 1867, where he joined his 
sister, Mrs. Waterbury, who had preceded 
him. Soon after his arrival he purchased 
the farm where he now resides, a place 
which was fairly well improved. Taking 
possession of the place he put in a crop in 
the spring of 1S68 and attended to its cul- 
tivation. He came here, however, alone, 
and believing the scriptural statement "that 
it was not good for man to be alone," he 
returned to his old home, and on the 21st 
of September, 1868, was united in marriage 
with Miss Sarah Shafer, also a native of 
Delaware county, New York, and daughter 
of Townsend and Adeline (Van Gaasbeek) 
Shafer, the former a native of Delaware 
county and the latter of Ulster county. New 
York, of Holland ancestry. Townsend 
Shafer spent his entire life in his native 
state, where his death occurred, March 18, 
1873. His wife survived him many years, 
and for about twenty years prior to her 
death made her home with our subject, dy- 
ing, however, in Middletown, Orange coun- 
ty, New York, April 29, 1896, while on a 
visit to that cit}-. Mrs. Shafer was one of 
two daughters born to her parents, her sis- 
ter, Josephine, now being the wife of J. A. 
Frasier, of California. In the common 
schools of her native county, and in Delphi 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



47 



Academ}', Mrs. Shafer was educated, and 
for a time prior to her marriage engaged in 
teaching in the pubHc schools. 

Immediately after his marriage Mr. 
Shafer returned to Ogle county and took 
care of his crop, subsequently joining his 
wife in Delaware county, where they re- 
mained until February, 1868, when they came 
to their new home near Polo, where he re- 
sumed farming, and where they have since 
continued to reside. Soon after taking 
possession of his farm, Mr. Shafer erected 
a small frame house, and four years later 
built an addition to, and there they lived 
until 1S82, when he built a larger and more 
pretentious dwelling. From time to time 
he has made improvements on his place, 
setting out shade and ornamental trees, till- 
ing the land, and erecting the necessary out- 
buildings. His farm is very conveniently 
located, being within one mile of the cor- 
porate limits of the city of Polo. 

In 1864 Mr. Shafer attained his major- 
ity, and in November following he cast his 
first presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln, 
since which time he has continued to sup- 
port the candidates of the Republican party. 
He and his wife are members of the Bap- 
tist church of Polo, and he is one of its 
official board. In the work of the church 
they are both greatly interested, and do 
what they can to advance the Master's king- 
dom. They believe in enjoying life and to 
that end have made a number of visits back 
to their old home in Delaware county. New 
York, and in November, 1896, went to 
California, where they remained until Feb- 
ruary, 1897, during which time they visited 
San Francisco, Sacramento, and other noted 
places on the Pacific slope. Their trip was 
a most enjoyable one. Both are well 
known in Polo and vicinity and their friends 



are many throughout the western part of 
the county. As a farmer, he thoroughly 
understands his business. 



DAVID THOMSON.— Quite a number of 
the leading and prominent citizens of 
Ogle county are of alien birth, and have 
transported to this land of fertility and 
plenty the thrifty habits of their native 
country. Among these there is none that 
is better known or more widely respected 
than the gentleman whose name introduces 
this sketch. He now owns and operates a 
valuable farm of about two hundred and 
fifty acres on section 5, Leaf River town- 
ship. 

Mr. Thomson is a native of Scotland, 
born in Renfrewshire, January 8, 1829, and 
is a son of James and Eughemia (St. Clare) 
Thomson, also natives of that country. 
The father, who was born in Ayrshire, was 
a baker by trade, and in 1810 embarked in 
that business at Johnstown, Scotland, where 
he carried on operations until his death in 
1841. His wife survived him twent}' years, 
departing this life in 1861. In the family 
were twelve children, eight sons and four 
daughters, of whom eleven reached years of 
maturity, but only three are now living, 
namely: Mrs. Jane Caldwell, who was born 
in 1807, and now resides near Glasgow, 
Scotland; Nesbit, who was born in 181 1, 
and is also living in that country; and Da- 
vid, our subject. 

In early life David Thomson learned 
the baker's trade with his father, and con- 
tinued to work at the same until coming 
to the new world in 1848. He first locat- 
ed in Troy, New York, where he had two 
sisters living, Mrs. Euphemia Turner and 
Mrs. Mary Ann Craig, who later became 



48 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



residents of Ogle county, Illinois. Each 
had but one child. In Troy, Mr. Thom- 
son worked at his trade for about three 
years, and the following year was spent 
in a bakery in Newark, New Jersey. He 
went to California in 1852, taking passage 
on a steamer at New York City. He 
crossed the Isthmus and proceeded up the 
Pacific to San Francisco, where he worked 
in a bakery for two months. He then went 
to the mines and spent about ten years in 
search for the yellow metal. In 1862 he 
returned to New York and shortly afterward 
came to Ogle county, Illinois, where his 
sisters had located in the meantime. The 
same year he purchased seventy-five acres 
of prairie land and ten acres of timber land, 
and at once turned his attention to the im- 
provement and cultivation of his place. He 
bought more land from time to time and 
now has about two hundred and fifty acres, 
which he has placed under a high state of 
cultivation, and improved with good and 
substantial buildings. Although this was 
his first experience in farming, he met with 
success almost from the start, and is now 
numbered among the most successful farm- 
ers and stock raisers of Leaf River town- 
ship. 

On the 20th of February, 1863, in Ogle 
county, Mr. Thomson was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Mary Ballaugh, who was 
born in Albany, New York, and reared in 
that state. Her father, John Ballaugh, was 
a molder and foundryman, and was engaged 
in business in Williamsburg, New York, for 
some years. There were thirteen children 
born to Mr. and Mrs. Thomson and all are 
living with the exception of two, one of 
whom died in infancy, and the other, Mary, 
at the age of ten years. William is a 
farmer of Washington county, Illinois; Jane 



is the wife of William McCartney, a farmer 
of Winnebago county, Illinois; Euphemia 
is the wife of Chris Kilker, a farmer of 
Leaf River township. Ogle county; John 
is a farmer of Jackson county, Minnesota; 
Dr. Stewart is a physician of Washington 
county, Illinois. The above are all mar- 
ried, while the others are still single, name- 
ly: David A., who is clerking in a grocery 
store in Steward, Illinois; Mattie, who is 
teaching in Winnebago county; Nesbit,who 
assists in the farm work; and Edward, 
Robert and George, all at home. 

Mr. Thomson cast his first presidential 
vote for Abraham Lincoln in 1S64, and has 
since been an ardent supporter of the Re- 
publican party. He has ever used his in- 
fluence for the good of the public schools, 
and for a number of years was a member of 
the school board. He was also clerk of his 
district for several years and township 
trustee for three years. He and his wife 
are leading members of the Middle Creek 
Presbyterian church, and their sterling worth 
and many excellencies of character have 
endeared them to all with whom they have 
come in contact. 



JAMES C. WOODBURN has for a quar- 
ter of a century been prominently iden- 
tified with the business and political inter- 
ests of Byron and is distinctively a man of 
affairs, oue who wields a wide influence. 
He is actively engaged in the practice of law 
and is also interested in the real-estate and 
insurance business. His intellectual energy, 
professional integrity, prudent business 
methods, and reliable sagacity have all com- 
bined to make him one of the ablest busi- 
ness men of the community. 

A native of Ogle county, Mr. Woodburn 




JAMES C. WOODBUKN. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



51 



was born on the old homestead in Byron 
township, October 13, 1846, and belongs to 
a family of English extraction, whose repre- 
sentatives were among the first settlers of 
Connecticut. His grandfather, John Wood- 
burn, was born in that state, and was among 
the pioneers of Bradford county, Pennsyl- 
vania, where the father, Allen Woodburn, 
first opened his eyes to the light in 18 10, 
and where he grew to manhood. The year 
1836 witnessed his arrival in Ogle county, 
Illinois, and in Byron township, near the 
present village of Byron, he took a claim of 
one hundred and sixty acres, on which he 
erected a log house and raised three or four 
small crops. Returning to his native coun- 
ty, he was there married, in 1840, to Miss 
Mary A. Whitney, who was born in Luzerne 
county, Pennsylvania, and was a daughter 
of William Whitney, Esq., a representative 
of an old Pennsylvanian family. Mr. Wood- 
burn brought his bride to the home he had 
prepared for her in Ogle county and resumed 
his farming operations here. He was one 
of the most active, enterprising and success- 
ful farmers of this region and soon had his 
land under excellent cultivation. His little 
pioneer home was replaced by a large, neat 
and substantial residence, good outbuildings 
were erected, and fruit, forest and orna- 
mental trees set out. From time to time 
he purchased more land until he owned one 
thousand acres, all in one body, on which 
were three sets of farm buildings besides 
those on his own homestead, it being one 
of the improved and most highly cultivated 
places in the county. Mr. Woodburn was 
quite prominent and influential and was 
elected to a number of local offices of trust 
and honor. He was also one of the fore- 
most to aid by his influence or support any 
object which he believed calculated to pro- 



mote the upbuilding or advancement of 
Ogle county. He died at his home Decem- 
ber 22, 1887, at the ripe old age of seventy- 
eight years, and his wife passed away in 
1879. Both were laid to rest in the Byron 
cemetery, where has been erected to their 
memory a neat and substantial monument. 
They were the parents of three children: 
Fred C, the eldest, is now living retired in 
Rockford, Illinois; James C. is next in or- 
der of birth; and Carrie E. is the wife of 
Charles H. Patrick, of Rockford. 

James C. Woodburn completed his lit- 
erary education in Wheaton College, and 
later entered the law department of the 
Michigan University at Ann Arbor, graduat- 
ing at that noted institution with the class 
of 1870. He then successfully engaged in 
teaching in Ogle county for two years, and 
at the end of that time opened an office in 
Byron for the practice of law. Being an 
able lawyer, and a man of sound judgment, 
he manages his cases with masterly skill 
and tact, and practices in all of the courts. 
As a business man he has also met with 
marked success and still carries on a large 
real estate and insurance business. In 1882 
he became interested in banking, in which 
he also succeeded, but at the end of five 
years he sold out. 

On the loth of November, 1S80, in Ogle 
county, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. 
Woodburn and Miss Ada M. Patrick, a 
daughter of George T. Patrick, one of the 
first settlers of the county. She was born, 
reared and educated here, and for some 
years prior to her marriage successfully en- 
gaged in teaching. Four children bless 
this union: Mary A., Roy M., Adelbert and 
Grace E. 

Politically Mr. Woodburn is a life-long 
Republican, having cast his first presidential 



52 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ballot for U. S. Grant in 1868. He has 
ever taken an active and prominent part in 
local politics and campaign work, has been 
a delegate to many county, congressional 
and state conventions, and has rendered his 
party efficient service. He was elected and 
served as the only temperance mayor of 
Byron, was a leading member of the town 
board for several years, treasurer of Byron 
township twenty years, and for twenty-four 
years has been justice of the peace in the 
township, a position he is still most credit- 
ably and satisfactorily filling. He is also 
notary public, and in whatever position he 
has been called upon to fill he has proved 
a most faithful trustworthy official. So- 
cially he is a Master Mason, and has served 
as secretary of Byron lodge for the past 
fifteen years. He was largely instrumental 
in organizing the Eastern Star at that place, 
of which he and his wife are charter mem- 
bers, and Mrs. Woodburn is now worthy 
matron of the order. Both hold member- 
ship in the Congregational church, and in 
social circles occupy an enviable position. 



HON. ALBERT F. BROWN. — More 
than sixty years have passed since this 
gentleman arrived in Ogle county, and he is 
justly numbered among her honored pioneers 
and leading citizens. As an agriculturist he 
has been prominently identified with her 
business interests and in early life took quite 
an influential part in the political affairs of 
this section. His is an honorable record of 
a conscientious man, who by his upright life 
has won the confidence of all with whom he 
has come in contact. 

Mr. Brown was born September 4, i8ig, 
in Briuifield, Hampden county, Massachu- 
setts, near Springfield, and belongs to an old 



and distinguished family of that state. The 
first to come to America was Jonathan 
Brown, a native of England, who settled in 
Massachusetts in 1736 and received a grant 
of land from King George. His homestead 
remained in the family for several genera- 
tions. He not only aided the colonies in their 
struggle for independence during the Revo- 
lution, but also bore an active part in the 
early Indian wars. At a meeting of the 
citizens of the colony he was appointed to 
visit each house to ascertain whether the 
inmates were using imported tea and if so 
to report the same that such families might 
be ostracised, this being just prior to the 
famous Boston tea party. His son, Bar- 
tholomew Brown, our subject's grandfather, 
was born in Brimfield, Massachusetts, and 
spent his entire life there, his remains being 
interred in the village cemetery. He was a 
farmer by occupation and served with dis- 
tinction as a lieutenant in the Continental 
army during the Revolutionary war. 

Colonel Dauphin Brown, father of our 
subject, was also a native of Brimfield, born 
November 9, 1792, and was reared on his 
father's farm. He was married December 
I, 1 8 14, to Miss Sila Patrick, who was 
born in Brimfield, February 9, 1792, a 
daughter of Samuel and Persis (Smith) Pat- 
rick. The Patrick family is also of English 
origin and was founded in Massachusetts 
in 17 16. The Colonel and his wife lived 
on the old Brown homestead until April, 
1837, when, accompanied by their sons, 
Albert F., Samuel Patrick and J. M. Clay- 
ton, he started for Illinois, taking the route 
I'ia Hartford, New York city, Philadelphia 
and Pittsburg, thence down the Ohio and 
up the Mississippi and Illinois rivers to Pe- 
oria, where they procured teams and drove 
to Dixon. There they rented land about a 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



53 



mile and a half from the village for one 
summer. Colonel Brown and Mr. Patrick 
visited Ogle count}' and the former pur- 
chased eighty acres at Black Walnut Grove, 
on section 9, Marion township. In the fall 
of that year, 1887, in company with Jared 
and J. F. Sanford, he built a sawmill on 
Mill creek, in what is now Byron township, 
and in December returned to Massachusetts. 
The following spring he sold his farm at 
Brimfield, settled up all business claims, 
and shipped his goods from Boston by way 
of New Orleans, to Savanna, Carroll county, 
Illinois, while his family came west by the 
the same route that he had previously taken, 
with the exception that they landed at Sa- 
vanna instead of Peoria, and from there 
came to Ogle county. Colonel Brown 
bought a claim of eighty acres in the im- 
mediate vicinity of Byron and built a frame 
house in the village, where the family re- 
sided for seven years while he opened up 
and developed his farm. As soon as the 
land came into market, he entered his claim 
on section 9, Marion township, and also 
purchased the southeast quarter of section 
35, townships 25 and 11, on which he 
erected a residence that was ever afterward 
his home. There his death occurred No- 
vember 15, 1 87 1. His first wife had passed 
away in 1840, and in 1854 he wedded Miss 
Lucia Homer, who was also born in Brim- 
field, Massachusetts, in May, 1793, and died 
in 1 88 1. He was commissioned colonel 
in the Massachusetts state militia by Gov- 
ernor Levi Lincoln, but entered the service 
as a private. He was also one of the most 
prominent men in the early settlement of 
Ogle county, was one of the first commis- 
sioners elected and was serving in that 
office at the time of the erection of the 
first court house. In 1849 he ably repre- 



sented his district in the Sixteenth General 
Assembly of Illinois. With his first wife 
he joined the Congregational church at 
Brimfield in early life, and after coming to 
this state was an active and prominent 
member of that denomination, assisting in 
the organization of the churches at Byron 
and Stillman Valley and serving as deacon 
for many years. 

To Colonel Dauphin and Sila (Patrick) 
Brown were born eight children, who in 
order of birth are as follows; Persis P. 
married Dr. Arnold E. Hurd, a pioneer and 
prominent citizen of Ogle county, and both 
are now deceased, Mrs. Hurd departing this 
life at Stillman Valley in August, 1861. 
Lucy A. married Hon. Joshua White, a 
leading citizen of Ogle county, now de- 
ceased, who served for sixteen years as a 
member of the county board and also served 
in the Twenty-first General Assembly of 
Illinois, and she died October 13, 1885. 
Albert F. , our subject, is the next in the 
family. Henry F. died at Byron, July 30, 
1839, at the age of eighteen years. Sarah 
S. is the wife of Frank A. Smith and resides 
near Byron. Harriet L. married William 
J. Mix and died November 24, 1849. 
George F. died at Stillman Valley, Novem- 
ber 24, 1850. Julia A. married Hon. 
James G. White, a prominent man of Ogle 
county, now deceased, and she is now living 
in Stillman Valley. 

Albert F. Brown was sixteen years of 
age when he accompanied his father on his 
first trip to Illinois and amid pioneer scenes 
in Ogle county he grew to manhood, early 
becoming familiar with the arduous task of 
transforming the wild land into rich and 
productive fields. His education was prin- 
cipally obtained in the common schools, 
supplemented by one year's attendance at 



54 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Wesleyan Academy, in Massachusetts. For 
a few years he operated a ferry at Byron, 
but throughout life has given the greater 
part of his attention to agricultural pursuits. 
In 1845 he and his brother-in-law, Dr. 
Hurd, came to Stillman Valley and entered 
between eight and nine hundred acres of 
land and each opened up a fine farm. Mr. 
Brown owned five hundred acres, and of 
this he placed three hundred acres under 
the plow. For two years after his marriage 
he continued to reside in Byron and then 
removed to Stillman Valley, owning the 
first frame house in that place. Later he 
built a more commodious and substantial 
residence, and is still successfully engaged 
in farming upon one of the best improved 
and most valuable farms in the county. 

On the 8th of December, 1842, at By- 
ron, Mr. Brown was united in marriage 
with Miss Eunice Cordelia Colhren, who 
was born in Cayuga county. New York, 
May 8, 1823, a daughter of Nathaniel 
Cothren, also a pioneer of Ogle county. 
She was called to her final rest November 
10, 1892. The children born of this union 
were as follows: Henrietta C, at home; 
Charles F., a farmer of Marion township; 
George H., a prominent business man of 
Stillman Valley, and a stanch Republican, 
who is president of the village school board 
and supervisor of Marion township; Esther 
J., wife of Harvey Rood, of Chicago; Cora 
C. , wife of William F. Hannum, of Still- 
man Valley; A. Chester, a stockholder and 
cashier of the Stillman Valley Bank; Sila 
Persis, wife of Joseph G. Pratt, an attorney 
of Hilo, Hawaiian Islands; and Edwin, who 
died in infancy. 

Origmally Mr. Brown was an old-line 
Whig in politics, and cast his first ballot in 
1840 for Tippecanoe and Tyler, too; but in 



1859 he joined the newly organized Repub- 
lican party, and has since fought under its 
banner. He assisted in the formation of 
the party in his congressional district, and 
has since been an active and influential 
worker in its ranks. He has been called 
upon to fill many local offices of honor and 
trust, such as assessor and supervisor, and 
was chairman of the board a number of 
terms. In 1878 he was elected to the 
thirty-second general assembly of Illinois, 
and so acceptably did he fill the office that 
he was twice re-elected, proving a most 
popular and capable official. He was a 
member of several important committees, 
and was chairman of the committees on 
county and township organizations and on 
roads, and state buildings. Since his re- 
tirement from that office he has declined all 
political honors. For thirty-eight years he 
has been an active member of the Congre- 
gational church, and has served as its trus- 
tee for forty years. As a citizen he stands 
ready to discharge every duty devolving 
upon him; over his life record there falls no 
shadow of wrong; his public service was 
most exemplary, and his private life has 
been marked by the utmost fidelity to duty. 



JF. SNYDER, M. D., who resides at 
Monroe Center, Illinois, where he is en- 
gaged in the practice of his profession with 
gratifying success, is a native of Schoharie 
county. New York, and was born May 26, 
i860. He is the son of Nelson and Henri- 
etta (Hale) Snyder, both of whom were na- 
tives of New York, the father being a farmer 
by occupation and following that vocation 
during his entire life. The paternal grand- 
father, Daniel Snyder, married Mary Ecker- 
son, both being New York people, and both 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



55 



living and dying in that state. For many 
years he engaged in hotel keeping in Mid- 
dleburg, New York, at the same time en- 
gaging in agricultural pursuits. 

In the family of Nelson and Henrietta 
Snyder were six children, four sons and two 
daughters, all of whom are yet living. 
Daniel is married and is now a prosperous 
farmer residing in Stillman Valley. Charles 
S. married Mary Bly, and is also a substan- 
tial farmer living at Stillman Valley. Henry 
H., a portrait artist, is married and makes 
his home in Rockford, Illinois. J. F. is 
the subject of this sketch. Julia married 
J. Huff, and they live at Byron, where he 
is employed at his trade, that of a carpen- 
ter. Helen married A. J. Woodcock, M. 
D., and they reside in Byron, where he is 
engaged in active practice. In his native 
state. Nelson Snyder owned and operated 
a farm of one hundred and si.xty acres, 
which he sold in 1868, and coming to Ogle 
county, purchased a farm of one hundred 
and sixty acres in Marion township, where 
he yet resides. Many improvements have 
been made upon the place since it came 
into his possession, the farm being well 
tilled, with good barns and other outbuild- 
ings which show that it is owned by one 
who thoroughly understands his business. 
The good wife and mother passed to her re- 
ward May 26, 1896, leaving not only the 
family, but many friends to mourn her loss. 

The subject of this sketch was but eight 
years old when he accompanied his parents 
to Ogle county. His education, which was 
begun in the common schools of his native 
state, was continued in the schools of Ogle 
county. He was an apt scholar, and at the 
early age of sixteen years passed an exami- 
nation and commenced teaching in the pub- 
lic schools of his adopted county. Teach- 

6 



ing in the winter months, and working upon 
the farm in summer, he continued until he 
was eighteen years old, when he entered 
the medical department of Michigan Uni- 
versity, at Ann Arbor, where he remained 
one year, and then entered Rush Medical 
College, Chicago, from which he graduated 
in 1882, at the age of twenty-two years, be- 
ing the youngest man in his class. 

Immediately after receiving his diploma, 
Dr. Snyder located at Kings, Ogle county, 
and at once engaged in the practice of his 
profession, but in September of the same 
year moved to Monroe Center, and has here 
continued in active practice to the present 
time. That his choice of a location was a 
good one is evidenced by his large practice 
and the estimation in which he is held in 
the community. In 1884 he was nominated 
on the Republican ticket for the office of 
county coroner, was duly elected, and 
served the full term of four years. In 1890 
he was elected township treasurer, a posi- 
tion which he still continues to hold. 
Reared a Republican, he has since contin- 
ued to advocate the principles of the Re- 
publican party, and is now with his party 
in favor of the retention of all gained by the 
late war with Spain. 

Dr. Snyder was married September 4, 
1S89, to Miss Hattie Swett, a daughter of 
Riley and Mary (Hickox) Swett, who were 
early settlers of Ogle county. By this union 
there is one son, Clarendon Swett Snyder, 
now a lad of seven years. 

Fraternally Dr. Snyder is a member of 
the Masonic order and of the Modern Wood- 
men of America, in the latter body being 
examining physician in his local camp. So- 
cially he is a member of the Alumni As- 
sociation of Rush Medical College and 
professionally a member of the Fox 



56 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



River Medical Society. He is a liberal 
supporter of the various churches and the 
public schools, and gives aid and en- 
couragement to every enterprise of value 
to his town and county. In the estimation 
of his fellow citizens he is held in the high- 
est esteem. 



J CHESTER STIRES is a worthy rep- 
resentative of the business interests of 
Byron, where he is extensively engaged in 
buying and shipping stock. Of excellent 
business ability and broad resources, he has 
attained a prominent place among the sub- 
stantial citizens of this part of the county, 
and is a recognized leader in public affairs. 
He has won success by his well-directed, 
energetic efforts, and the prosperity that 
has come to him is certainly well deserved. 
Mr. Stires was born February 6, 1S52, 
in Hunterdon county. New Jersey, and be- 
longs to one of the pioneer families of that 
state, of which his parents, Thomas and 
Jane (Conover) Stires, were also natives. 
The father, whose birth occurred in Hunt- 
erdon county, in 1808, engaged in farming 
there until 1854 or 1855, when he removed 
to Ohio, but in 1856 he became a resident 
of Byron township. Ogle county, Illinois, 
where he purchased an improved farm of 
one hundred and sixty acres. To its culti- 
vation he devoted his energies until called 
from this life July i, 1864, and his wife, 
who survived him some years, passed away 
in February, 1878. In their family were 
five sons and five daughters, all of whom 
reached man and womanhood, with the ex- 
ception of one son. H. C, the eldest, re- 
sides in Byron; Ira owns and occupies the 
old homestead farm; Mrs. N. J. Hewitt is 
a resident of Byron; Mrs. Maggie Swack- 



hamer lives in Hunterdon county, New Jer- 
sey; Carrie N. died unmarried; Mrs. Han- 
nah Noyes makes her home in Byron; 
Garret and J. Chester are both residents of 
that place; and Mrs. Alice Court lives in 
Creston, Iowa. 

Reared on the home farm, J. Chester 
Stires early became familiar with all the 
duties which fall to the lot of the agricult- 
urist, aiding in the work of the farm dur- 
ing the summer season and attending the 
district school during the winter months. 
He was married in Marion township. Ogle 
county, December 29, 1875, to Miss Hattie 
N. ^^'ilbu^, who was born in Byron town- 
ship and was reared and educated in this 
county. Her father, Charles Wilbur, lo- 
cated here in 1845 and took up a tract of 
government land in Byron township, which 
he transformed into a good farm. After his 
marriage Mr. Stires operated this place, 
consisting of one hundred and forty acres, 
until 1890, and also owned and operated 
another farm of two hundred and thirty 
acres, being actively and successfully en- 
gaged in agricultural pursuits for fifteen 
years. In 1890 he removed to the village 
of Byron, where he bought residence prop- 
erty, which he has greatly improved, and 
now has a very pleasant and commodious 
home. Here he engages in buying and 
shipping stock and is one of the most suc- 
cessful dealers in the county. In 1892 he 
also bought an interest in the Byron bank,- 
and is now one of the four stockholders of 
that reliable institution. 

Mr. and Mrs. Stires are the parents of 
four children: Mabel, who died at the age 
of thirteen years; Elva Jane, a well edu- 
cated young lady who is now successfully 
engaged in teaching school in Ogle county; 
Anna E., who is also well educated and is 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



57 



now at home, and Margaret Grace, who 
completes the family. 

Politically Mr. Stires has affiliated with 
the Democracy since casting his first presiden- 
tial ballot for Samuel J. Tilden in 1876, and 
he has taken an active and prominent part in 
local politics, serving as a delegate to numer- 
ous county, congressional and state conven- 
tions. In the spring of 1S98 he was elected 
supervisor of Byron township, defeating the 
Republican candidate who had served for 
ten years in that office and had always 
been elected by a large majority. This fact 
plainly indicates the popularity of our sub- 
ject, as the township has always been 
strongly Republican, and his many friends 
in Byron rejoiced in his triumph, manifest- 
ing their enthusiasm by a big rally. He is 
now serving on the poor farm committee. 
In 1897 he was elected president of the 
town board. Mr. Stires is acknowledged to 
be one of the most enterprising and public 
spirited citizens of Byron, and for eight 
years advocated the building of a bridge 
across the river at that place and was in- 
strumental in at last securing it. He con- 
tributed two hundred dollars toward its 
construction, and was also identified with 
the building of both elevators at this place. 



HORATIO WALES.— Fortunate is he 
who has back of him an ancestry hon- 
orable and distinguished, and happy is he if 
his lines of life are cast in harmony there- 
with. Our subject is blessed in this respect, 
for he springs from a prominent New Eng- 
land family. He was born near Polo, Ogle 
county, Illinois, November 27, 1S52, and is 
a son of Horatio Wales, Sr, whose birth oc- 
curred January 22, 1810, in the town of 



Wales, Massachusetts, where after clerking 
for a time he went into business. On coming 
to Ogle county in 1836, the father located in 
Buffalo Grove, and having brought with 
him a stock of goods, he opened a store at 
that place, which he conducted for a few 
years. On selling out he bought a tract of 
government land and engaged in farming 
until 1876, when he retired from active 
business cares and spent his last days in 
Polo, where his death occurred May 5, 
1890. At an early day in the history of 
the county, he took quite an active and 
prominent part in public affairs and served 
as sheriff from 1838 until 1840. He at-, 
tended the Congregational church, and 
was highly respected by all who knew 
him. 

Royal Wales, the paternal grandfather 
of our subject, was also a native of Wales, 
Massachusetts, born in 1773, and died in 
1857. For his second wife he married 
Mrs. Ruby (Porter) Bliss, and Horatio 
Wales, Sr. , was one of the children born 
of this union. Royal Wales was a son 
of Oliver and Elizabeth Wales and a 
grandson of Ebenezer Wales, whose fa- 
ther was Deacon Nathaniel Wales, a son of 
Timothy Wales. Nathaniel Wales, the fa- 
ther of Timothy, was born in Ide, York- 
shire, England, in 1586, and on his emigra- 
tion to America in 1662, located at Dor- 
chester, Massachusetts. His father, John 
Wales, spent his entire life in England. 

The mother of our subject bore the 
maiden name of Mary E. Williams, and 
was born in Brimfield, Massachusetts, a 
daughter of Ebenezer and Eliza (Whitwell) 
Williams. The Williams family was found- 
ed in America by Robert Williams, who 
crossed the Atlantic in 1638, and his de- 
scendants down to the grandfather of our 



5^ 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



subject are as follows: Samuel, probably 
born in England in 1632, died in i6g8; 
Samuel, born in 1655, died in 1735; Rev. 
Ebenezer, who graduated from Cambridge 
in 1709, was born in 1690 and died in 1753; 
Rev. Chester, born in 1720, died in 1755; 
Rev. Nehemiah, who graduated from Har- 
vard College in 1769 and was a Congrega- 
tional preacher at Brimfield, Massachusetts, 
for over twenty-one years, was born in 
1749 and died in 1800; and Ebenezer, 
grandfather of our subject, was born in 
1777, and died in 1856. Mrs. Wales died 
December 14, 1892. 

Horatio Wales, of this review, was edu- 
cated in the district schools near his boy- 
hood home and in the public schools of 
Polo, continuing his studies in those insti- 
tutions until eighteen years of age. On 
attaining his majority he rented land from 
his father and continued to engage in agri- 
cultural pursuits until 1S82. Removing to 
Polo, he embarked in business at that place 
in 1885, as a dealer in farm machinery, and 
from year to year as his business has grad- 
ually increased he has enlarged his store 
room until he now occupies a commodious 
warehouse and office on the principal busi- 
ness street. He deals in all kinds of agri- 
cultural implements, buggies, wagons, wind 
mills and steam heating apparatus, and has 
built up a most excellent trade. 

In Polo, January 12, 1893, Mr. Wales 
was united in marriage with Miss Emma 
Spear. Her father. Captain Joseph L. 
Spear, was born in Martickville, Pennsyl- 
vania, February i, 1831, and is a son of 
Rev. John Spear, a minister of the Meth- 
odist church, of the New Jersey conference, 
and his wife, Matilda Wentz, daughter of 
Joseph and Sarah (Smith) Wentz. On 
coming to Illinois in 1859, Captain Spear 



first located in Brookville, and later in For- 
reston. Ogle county, where he taught 
school until the outbreak of the Civil war. 
In August, 1862, he enlisted in Company 
E, Ninety-second Illinois Volunteer Infan- 
try, was elected first lieutenant of his com- 
pany and was soon afterward promoted to 
the rank of captain. He participated in the 
battles of Lookout Mountain and Chicka- 
mauga, was with Sherman on the famous 
march to the sea, and witnessed Johnston's 
surrender a few da\s after Lee's capitula- 
tion. On his return from the war he en- 
tered in the drug business in Polo, which he 
successfully carried on until 1896, when he 
sold out to his son. Just before going to 
the front Captain Spear was married, in 
Polo, August 24, 1S62, to Miss Mary Car- 
penter, a native of Delhi, New York, and a 
daughter of David and Olive (Vegte) Car- 
penter. Her maternal grandparents were 
John and Catherine (Shaw) Vegte, and 
great-grandparents were John and Cathar- 
ine (Vanderbilt) Vegte. Captain Spear 
died July 11, 1898. Mr. and Mrs. Wales 
have an interesting family of three children, 
namely: Horatio, Frank and Helen. 

Politically Mr. \\'ales is an ardent sup- 
porter of the Republican party, takes quite 
an active interest in political affairs, and 
has served as chairman of the township 
Republican committee. Socially he is a 
member of the Independent Order of Odd 
P^ellows and the Knights of the Globe, while 
religiously he attends the Presbyterian 
church, his wife being a member. As a 
business man he ranks among the foremost 
in his section of the county and his inter- 
ests have ever been so managed as to gain 
him the confidence of the public and the suc- 
cess that should always attend honorable 
effort. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL KECOKD. 



59 



WILLIAM CAMLING has for many 
years been one of the most highly 
esteemed and valued citizens of Ogle coun- 
ty, his home being on section 9, Kockvale 
township. He is of foreign birth but his 
duties of citizenship have been performed 
with a loyalty equal to that of any native 
son of America, and when the nation was 
imperiled by rebellion, he went to the de- 
fense of the Union and protected the cause 
of his adopted country on many a southern 
battle field. 

Mr. Camling is a native of Holland, born 
near Zealand, August 10, 1842, but was 
only two )ears and a half old when brought 
to America by his father, Cyrus Camling, 
who was probably a farmer in the old world 
and served for several years in the army of 
the Netherlands. In the United States he 
was employed as a day laborer and made 
his home near Grand Rapids, Michigan, 
where his death occurred about 1876. He 
held membership in the Lutheran church in 
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and in political senti- 
ment was a Republican. He had by his 
first wife one child, a son, and by his sec- 
ond had three children: Lane, who mar- 
ried a Miss Van Horn and is engaged in 
fruit farming in Michigan; Katie, who died 
at the age of seven years; and William, our 
subject. For his second wife he wedded 
Miss Jane Van Heltz; by his third wife had 
no children. 

On first crossing the Atlantic the family 
located in Buffalo, New York, where they 
made their home until William Camling was 
six years of age, and then removed to Mil- 
waukee, Wisconsin, where he was reared 
and educated in the public schools. At the 
age of fourteen years he left home and be- 
gan the battle of life for himself, his first 
employment being in the hay field, where 



he worked with a hand rake for three 
months. He was only seventeen when he 
joined the boys in blue, enlisting in January, 
1862, at Cold Springs, Wisconsin, in Com- 
pany F, Second Wisconsin Cavalry. The 
regiment first went to St. Louis, Missouri, 
where it remained for about three months 
while being equipped, and then proceeded 
to Springfield, that state, under command 
of Colonel C. C. Washburn, while Com- 
pany F was under the command of Captain 
Forrest. The summer was spent in fight- 
ing bushwhackers on the road from Spring- 
field to Helena, Arkansas. Arriving in the 
latter place in the fall of that year they 
there spent the winter, and during 1863 
were engaged in many skirmishes and also 
participated in the siege of Vicksburg and 
in the battle of Jackson, Mississippi. Re- 
turning to Vicksburg they were on garrison 
duty there during the winter of 1863-4, and 
in the spring of the latter year went up the 
Red river, finally landing at Austin, Texas, 
where they were kept on the lookout for 
hostile Mexicans until the fall of 1865, when 
they were mustered out at that place and 
sent to Madison, Wisconsin. In that city 
Mr. Camling received his discharge papers 
and arrived home on Christmas. 

During the following winter he worked 
as a day laborer, and then hired out to a 
farmer for a couple of years. He continued 
to make his home in Wisconsin until 1869, 
when he came to Illinois and located at 
Rochelle, where, as a teamster, he entered 
the employ of the Chicago and Iowa Rail- 
road, then in course of construction. For 
seven years he followed teaming, three 
years of which time fie was in the employ 
of Joseph Strom in delivering coal, and for 
the same length of time was with Miles 
Braiden, who was in the coal, lumber and 



6o 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ice business. In 1876 he purchased eighty 
acres of his present farm in Rockvale town- 
ship, to which he has added from time to 
time as his financial resources have in- 
creased, including tracts of forty, forty- 
eight and eighty acres, until he now has a 
valuable farm of two hundred and forty- 
eight and a half acres, which he has placed 
under excellent cultivation and improved 
with good and substantial buildings, that 
stand as monuments to his thrift and in- 
dustry. 

On the 23d of April, 1S64, Mr. Camling 
was united in marriage with Miss Mary 
Coldit/,, who was born May 6, 1846, a 
daughter of William and Mina (Shmutzler) 
Colditz, in whose family were five children, 
the others being Minnie, who is now the 
widow of Frederick Troeger and lives near 
Elida; F. W., who married Clara Boeswet- 
ter, but both are now deceased, his death 
occurring in 1886; Augusta, wife of William 
Schroeder, of West Bend, Wisconsin; and 
Lizzie, wife of Charles Wilke, of West 
Bend. The father of these children brought 
his family to America in 1854 and located 
in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, where he died 
about three months after his arrival, at the 
age of forty-six years. To Mr. and Mrs. 
Camling have been born seven children, 
namely: William, at home; Clara, who 
died at the age of six years; Cyrus, at home; 
Charles, who died at the age of sixteen; 
James and Belle, both at home; and Har- 
rison, who is still attending the district 
schools. All of the children have been pro- 
vided with fair common-school educations. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Camling 
is a Republican, and he has most accept- 
ably served his fellow-citizens as road com- 
missioner three years and school director 
twelve years. Socially he is an honored 



member of Oregon Post, No. 116, G. A. R., 
and religiously was at one time identified 
with the Lutheran church, but since com- 
ing to Ogle county has not united with any 
church organization. Brave and fearless, 
and of a rather venturesome disposition, he 
was always the first to volunteer for any 
perilous undertaking during the Civil war, 
and has ever shown the same spirit when 
occasion demands in days of peace, and is 
therefore justly numbered among the valued 
and useful citizens of the community. 



JOHN BISTLINE.— Among the repre- 
sentative and prosperous farmers of 
Ogle county, the record of whose lives fills 
an important place in this volume, it gives 
us pleasure to commemorate the name of 
this gentleman, who now owns and oper- 
ates a well improved and valuable farm of 
two hundred acres on section 14, Forreston 
township. Like many of our best citizens, 
he comes from the old Keystone state, his 
birth occurring in Perry county, Pennsylva- 
nia, September 6, 1831. His father, Joseph 
Bistline, was a native of Schuylkill coun- 
ty, Pennsylvania, and there married Miss 
Mary Reipseimer. P^or a number of years 
he followed farming in Perry county, and 
there died in 1849. 

In the county of his nativity John Bist- 
line passed his boyhood and youth, and the 
limited education he received in its public 
schools has been greatly supplemented by 
reading and study in later years, so that 
he is almost wholly a self-educated man. 
Before coming west he spent four years in 
Center county, Pennsylvania, but in 1857 
we fmd him ot route for Illinois. I'rom 
Chicago he rode horseback to Stephenson 
county, swimming his horses across the 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



6i 



streams as no bridges had then been built 
in this region. During the two years he 
remained in that county he worked for thir- 
teen dollars per month. Coming to Ogle 
county in 1859, he rented land in Forreston 
township for two years and in the meantime 
did his own housekeeping. In 1861 he 
made his first purchase of one hundred and 
sixty acres of land in the same township 
and to the work of improvement and culti- 
vation at once turned his attention. He 
led one of the steers used in breaking the 
first furrow upon the land, and soon had 
one hundred acres under cultivation. In 
the spring of 1862 he built a small house 
upon the place, the lumber for which he 
hauled from Freeport. Later he bought 
more land, and now has a fine farm of two 
hundred acres under excellent cultivation 
and well improved with good and substan- 
tial buildings, including a commodious and 
comfortable residence. 

Returning to Perry county, Pennsylvania, 
Mr. Bistline was married there, in 1S71, to 
Miss Mary M. Ewing, who was born in 
Dauphin county, that state, and when 
a child of thirteen removed with her 
family to Perry county. Later she spent 
six years with an uncle in Baltimore, Mary- 
land, but was mostly educated in Middle- 
town, Dauphin county. 

Mr. Bistline uses his right of franchise 
in support of the men and measures of the 
Republican party, but has never cared for 
political preferment, though he was elected 
and most acceptably served as township 
trustee for two terms. His estimable wife 
is a member of the Lutheran church of 
Forreston. Although Mr. Bistline came to 
this state as a young man with no capital, 
he has by untiring labor, perseverance and 
good management succeeded in accumulat- 



ing a handsome property, and has also won 
the confidence and high regard of all with 
whom he has come in contact by his 
straightforward way of doing business and 
by his pleasant, genial manner. 



MALCOLM C. ROE, M. D.— Among 
the prominent practitioners and lead- 
ing citizens of Ogle county, and a gentle- 
man who has for over a quarter of a cen- 
tury been actively identified with its prog- 
ress and development, the subject of this 
sketch deserves special mention. He is a 
native of Ogle county, born at Light House 
Point, October 31, 1842. His father, John 
Roe, was born in Pennsylvania, near Phila- 
delphia, in 1800. He grew to manhood in 
his native state and there received a fairly 
good education. At the age of twenty-one 
years he removed to Kentucky, and at Ed- 
dyville, Lyon county, engaged in teaching 
a private school. While residing in that 
state he was united in marriage with Miss 
Elizabeth A. Lyon, a native of that state 
and daughter of Colonel Matthew Lyon. 
Colonel Matthew Lyon was born in Wick- 
low county, Ireland, and in boyhood emi- 
grated to America, and stopping in Halifax, 
Nova Scotia, worked in a printing office 
some years. He then removed to Vermont 
where he published the Scourge of Aristoc- 
racy, and in 1776 became a lieutenant in a 
company of the "Green Mountain Boys." 
He became a very prominent man in that 
state, married a daughter of Governor 
Thomas Chittenden, was fined $1,000, and 
imprisoned four months in Vergennes, Ver- 
mont, under the alien and sedition law. 
After his death congress returned to his 
heirs the fine of $1,000 with compound inter- 
est. While in jail he was elected to con- 



62 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



gress, was in congress eight years from Ver- 
mont, twelve years from Kentucky, and was 
territorial delegate from Arkansas at the 
time of his death, was paymaster during 
the Revolution, colonel of militia, member 
of the legislature, judge, and founded the 
town of Fairhaven, in 1783. He there 
built a saw and gristmill, established a 
forge, and engaged in other manufacturing 
enterprises. (For a more extended account 
of the Lyon family see Johnson's Universal 
Encyclopedia.) 

To John and Elizabeth A. Roe nine chil- 
dren were born. Matthew Humphrey, born 
in Kentucky, died in infancy. Uriah C, 
born in Kentucky, now lives in Franklin 
Grove, Illinois, where he is engaged in the 
practice of medicine. Dr. Franklin M. Roe, 
of Downers Grove, Illinois. Giles Boliver, 
born in Sangamon county, Illinois, died in 
Ghana, Illinois. Matthew Cartwright, born 
in Sangamon county, is a farmer living near 
Grand Junction, Iowa. John H., born in 
Sangamon county, spent the years from 
1853 to 1893 in Kentucky, but is now liv- 
ing in Ghana. While residing in Kentucky 
he was engaged in the practice of law, and 
was also in the life insurance business, be- 
ing general agent of the Equitable Life In- 
surance Company of New York. Buelah 
Minerva, born at Light House, Ogle coun- 
ty, is now the wife of J. C. Mayberry, and 
they reside in Chattanooga, Tennessee. 
Frances Maria is the wife of John Conlon, 
a farmer and stock-raiser, residing in Milan 
township, De Kalb county, Illinois, now 
dead. Malcolm C. is the subject of this 
sketch. 

Leaving Kentucky, Dr. John Roe moved 
to Sangamon county, Illinois, where he 
engaged in the practice of medicine for a 
few years, and then came to Ogle county 



and located at Light House Point, where he 
resumed practice. From Light House he 
went to Chicago, but did not long remain 
there, going from there to Rockford, Illi- 
nois, and then to White Rock township, 
Ogle county, and later to Malta, DeKalb 
county, finally going to Nebraska, locating 
at Beatrice, Gage county, where he died in 
1871. 

The subject of this sketch was but two 
years old when his father moved to Chicago. 
He accompanied his parents to the several 
places in which they located, in the mean- 
time gaining such knowledge as was possi- 
ble in the common schools. It was his aim 
and intention, however, to obtain a higher 
education, thus fitting himself for a pro- 
fessional life. To that end he entered Mt. 
Morris Seminary, and later Western Union 
College and Military Academy at Fulton, 
Illinois. This was in 1861, and the war for 
the union commencing, the school was 
badly broken up, and he therefore remained 
there but one year. Later he took up the 
study of medicine, and entering Bennett 
Medical College, Chicago, he pursued the 
regular course and was graduated from that 
institution. In 1871 he took up a post- 
graduate course in the Physio-Medical Col- 
lege at Cincinnati, and graduated from it in 
1872. He commenced the practice of his 
profession in 1869 in Ogle county, and in 
1875 removed to Ghana, where he has 
since continued to reside, building up a 
practice of which he may well be proud. 

Dr. Roe was united in marriage with 
Miss Sarah P. Sturtevant, a native of Cleve- 
land, Ohio, and daughter of Benjamin D. 
and Annie (Martin) Sturtevant. In 1857 
the family came to Ogle county, and located 
in White Rock township, where the father 
carried on farming in connection with con- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



63 



tracting and building. He was born in 
Barton, Vermont, while his wife was born 
in Cheshire county, New Hampshire. They 
had a family of six children, two of whom 
died in infancy. The four yet living are 
George N., who lives one-half mile west of 
Ghana; Milton E. , a farmer of White Rock 
township, living on the old homestead; 
Sarah P., wife of our subject; and Emma 
L. , wife of James M. Miller, of Rockford, 
Illinois. 

To Dr. and Mrs. Roe five children have 
been born: Effie A. is deceased; Milton 
H. is a farmer living on the north side ot 
Ghana; Dr. John B. is engaged in the 
practice of his profession at Ghana, Illinois; 
Ada M. is the wife of Rev. S. D. Bartle, of 
Oasis, Iowa; S. Maud is living at home; 
Malcolm R. is living at home and attending 
the village school. 

In politics Dr. Roe is a Democrat. In 
1 88 5 he was elected a member of the board 
of supervisors and served two years. After 
an intermission he was again elected in 
1896. During the Cleveland administra- 
tions he was a member of the pension 
board. Fraternally he is a Mason, a mem- 
ber of the blue lodge at Oregon and the 
commander}' at Di.xon, Illinois. In educa- 
tional matters he is especially interested, 
his aim being to have the schools of his 
place of residence on a par with the best of 
those in larger places. In fact there is no 
enterprise of a public nature but finds in 
him an earnest advocate. He is popular 
not onl}' as a physician, but as a citizen as 
well. 



JUDSON AGARD WAITE, a prominent 
representative of the farming and stock 
raising interests of Ogle county, owns and 



operates a valuable farm on section 15, 
Rockvale township, whose neat and thrifty 
appearance well indicates his careful super- 
vision. Substantial improvements are sur- 
rounded by well-tilled fields, and all of the 
accessories and conveniences of a model 
farm are there found. 

Mr. Waite was born upon that place, 
January 6, 1862, a son of Adoniram Judson 
and Amelia (Agard) Waite. The father was 
a native of Washington county, New York, 
born July 5, 1S21, and was a son of Clarke 
G. and Abigail (Phillips) Waite, the former 
born April 3,' 1787, the latter May 14, 1791. 
The great-grandfather of our subject was 
Peleg Waite. Adoniram J. Waite, the father, 
was reared in the county of his nativity and 
received a common-school education. Un- 
til twenty-eight or thirty years of age he re- 
mained there and was married December 8, 
1842, to Miss Caroline Bull, by whom he 
had three children, namely: Missouri Lorina, 
who married William A. Steffa and lives in 
Oregon; Alton Perry, who married Annie 
Greenawalt and is now deceased; and Alzina, 
who married John Allen and resides in 
Oregon. The mother of these children de- 
parted this life in July, i860. The father 
continued to engage in agricultural pursuits 
in Washington county. New York, until 
about 1850, when he removed to Erie 
count)', that state, making his home there 
until April 8, 1853. He then joined his 
two brothers, Clarke G. and Elverton I. 
Waite, who had located in Ogle county, 
Illinois, in 1837. Here he purchased one 
hundred and ninety acres of wild land, to 
the cultivation and improvement of which 
he at once turned his attention. 

On the 29th of June, 1861, Adoniram 
J. Waite was again married, his second 
union being with Mrs. Amelia (Agard) Lan- 



64 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



don, who was born November 9, 1822. 
Her parents, Joshua and Lucy (Sibley) 
Agard, were natives of Wilmington, Con- 
necticut, the former born April 16, 17S9, 
the latter June 18, 1792. In the fam- 
ily were five children, as follows: Maria, 
Mary, Amelia, Austin and Hannah, also 
a half sister. Malissa Ann, all now de- 
ceased with the exception of Mrs. Waite, 
who has been twice married, his first hus- 
band being Horace Landon, Jr., a son of 
Horace Landon, of Collins, Erie county, 
New York. By that union she had two 
children: Newton, who married Annie 
Lyons, and is engaged in farming in Ten- 
nessee; and Sarah Maria, wife of Charles 
Rathbun, who is engaged in the coal busi- 
ness in Streator, Illinois, and is secretary 
and assistant manager of the Star Coal 
Company. Judson A. Waite, of this review, 
was the only child born of the second mar- 
riage. Joshua Agard served in the Revolu- 
tionary war, was in the battle of Monmouth, 
New Jersey. The father died January 22, 
1897, honored and respected by all who 
knew him. He had had several light strokes 
of paralysis, but on the morning of the day 
of his death was feeling quite well at break- 
fast, but twenty minutes after leaving the 
table he had another stroke and was un- 
conscious until he passed away at two 
o'clock in the afternoon. He was one of 
the prominent and influential citizens of his 
community, was a supporter of the Repub- 
lican party, and took quite an active part in 
local politics. He served as supervisor and 
school trustee, holding both offices for a 
number of years. In early life he was a 
member of the Baptist church, but after 
coming to this state never united with any 
congregation. 

Mr. Waite, whose name introduces this 



sketch, attended the district schools near 
his home and supplemented his early edu- 
cation by two years' attendance at the Mt. 
Morris Academy, leaving here in 18S2. 
Thus well fitted for life's responsible duties 
he returned to the old homestead and has 
since devoted his attention to general farm- 
ing and stock raising with most gratify- 
ing results. He is the owner of four hun- 
dred and thirty acres of arable land in the 
home place, besides one hundred and forty- 
five acres elsewhere, all under the highest 
cultivation and well improved. Upon the 
farm are three large barns and other out- 
buildings besides a neat and comfortable 
residence. For a number of years he has 
been interested in stock-raising, making a 
specialty of shorthorn and Durham cattle 
and Chester white hogs, and at one time 
also raised Morgan horses. However, he 
still has upon his place thirteen good horses. 
Mr. Waite is an ardent supporter of the 
Republican party and its principles and for 
six years has most capably and satisfactorily 
represented his township on the board of 
supervisors, during which time he has 
served on the committees on equalization, 
bridges, public buildings, printing and edu- 
cation. He has also been town clerk for 
seven years and in all of the relations of life 
has been found true and faithful to every 
trust reposed in him. 



PETER R. MEYERS, who resides on 
section 11, Lincoln township, is a 
native of Ogle county, and was born on the 
farm where he now resides, December 23, 
1843, and is the son of Jonathan and Eliza- 
beth (Redman) Meyers, the former a native 
of Dauphin county, Pennsylvania, born 
January 23, 1812, and the latter of Baden, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



65 



Germany, and who came to the new world 
a young lady, locating first in Pennsylvania, 
and later coming to Ogle county, where she 
was united in marriage with Mr. Meyers. 
In early life Jonathan Meyers learned the 
trade of stone mason, following that occu- 
pation in Hagarstown, Maryland, to which 
place he removed. From Maryland he 
came to Ogle county, being one of the pio- 
neers of 1837. On coming to this county he 
took up a claim in what is now Lincoln 
township, a portion of which is now com- 
prised in the farm of our subject. He was 
accompanied to this county by his brother, 
Jacob Meyers, who was well known to the 
early settlers, and whose descendants are 
yet residing in the county. When the land 
came into market, Jonathan Meyers entered 
and purchased four hundred and forty acres, 
and later eighty acres additional. He died 
on the farm which was his home for more 
than a half century, his death taking place 
July 16, 1893, at the age of eighty-one 
years. His wife passed away in 1S77, and 
their remains lie interred in the cemetery at 
\\ est Grove. 

Peter R. Meyers is the eldest of a family 
of seven children, of whom six lived to 
mature years and have families of their own. 
He grew to manhood on the home farm, 
and from the time old enough to render any 
assistance, made himself useful in the culti- 
vation of the farm. His education was 
limited to the common-schools of the early 
days of the county. 

Mr. Meyers was married in Forreston, 
Ogle county, January 17, 1867, to Miss 
Sarah Jane McLane, a native of Ogle coun- 
ty, and daughter of Richard McLane, a na- 
tive of Maryland, but an early settler of 
Ogle county. By this union four children 
were born. Lewis F. is a farmer of Lin- 



coln township. Edwin H. is a farmer of 
Maryland township, on the old McLane 
farm. Charles A. makes his home with his 
brother Lewis, while Ettie May is a young 
lady residing at home. 

After his marriage, Mr. Meyers moved 
to the McLane homestead, which he occu- 
pied and cultivated the farm for twenty- 
seven years, during which time he made 
some permanent improvements to the place. 
In 1S94 he succeeded to a part of the old 
Meyers homestead and removed to the old 
place. In addition to the two hundred and 
thirty-seven acres of the Meyers homestead, 
he owns one hundred and si.xty acres of the 
old McLane homestead. Both tracts are 
well improved, and the farm presents a very 
neat and attractive appearance. 

Politically Mr. Meyers is a stanch Re- 
publican, and has supported that party 
ticket since casting his first presidential vote 
for Abraham Lincoln in 1S64. He has been 
somewhat active in local politics, but not 
as an office seeker. He has, however, 
served as township trustee, school director, 
and such minor offices. In the fifty-five 
years that he has resided in the county — 
his entire life — he has been brought in con- 
tact with many of the best people, and 
wherever known he is regarded as a man of 
exemplary habits, a good citizen, one will- 
ing to do all he can for his native county 
and state. 



EDWARD E. PRICE, who is now living 
retired in the village of Byron, is a 
self-made man, who at an early age started 
out to make his own way in the world. He 
now represents a valuable property, all of 
which he has accumulated by his own per- 
severance and industry. A native of Wales, 



66 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



he was born in Montgomeryshire, January 
I, 1836, and there remained until fourteen 
years of age. In i S49 he crossed the broad 
Atlantic to join his brother, David Price, 
who was then living in Utica, New York. 
There he worked on a farm during the sum- 
mer season for a year or two, also engaged 
in teaming one summer, and spent one 
winter working in a tanyard, remaining there 
for about four years. In the meantime his 
brother had come west to Illinois and set- 
tled in Winnebago, where he has since made 
his home, residing in Rockford at the pres- 
ent time retired from active business. 

In 1S55 Edward E. Price also removed 
to Winnebago county, where he worked on 
a farm by the month for some time. There 
he married Miss Sarah Goodhue, a most es- 
timable lady, who is said to have been the 
first child born in Winftebago county. Her 
father. Squire Goodhue, was numbered 
among its first settlers and opened up a 
farm at Kishwaukee. After his marriage 
Mr. Price took charge of the Goodhue 
homestead and he and his wife cared for 
her parents until they were called to their 
final rest, and then succeeded to the place, 
which ^^r. Price operated for twenty-five or 
thirty years. In 1890 he removed from 
Kishwaukee to Byron, Ogle county, where 
he bought residence property and has since 
lived retired. In 189S he purchased lots 
and erected a good, neat and substantial 
residence which is now his home. 

Mr. Price has a family of seven children, 
two sons and five daughters, namely: Ed- 
ward J., a resident of B^ron; Thomas C, 
of David Junction; Mrs. Leora L. Helson, 
of Byron; Mrs. Lillian Poole, of Rockford; 
Mrs. Alberta Blakesley, of Wisconsin; and 
Lizzie, of Beloit, Wisconsin, and Lenora 
E. lives in Beloit. 



Politically Mr. Price has been identified 
with the Republican party since its organi- 
zation, casting his first \ote for John C. 
Fremont in 1856, and has supported 
every candidate of the party for the presi- 
dency since that time. He is enterprising 
and progressive, and through his own un- 
aided efforts has attained success in life and 
won the respect and esteem of a large cir- 
cle of friends and acquaintances. 



TAMES PANKHURST, M. D., of Grand 
»J Detour, one of the leading physicians of 
Ogle county, was born in Westfield, Sussex 
county, England, January iS, 1845, and is 
the son of John and Mary (Welfare) Pank- 
hurst, the former a native of Sussex county, 
England, born in 181 i, and the latter of 
Hastings, England, born in 1805. The pa- 
ternal grandfather, John Pankhurst, Sr., 
who was a wheelwright by trade, was also 
a nati\'e of England, where his entire life 
was spent. 

John Pankhurst, the father of our sub- 
ject, was also a wheelwright by trade, which 
occupation he followed until coming to 
America, in 1S50. Convinced that in his 
native land he could never rise higher than 
a common wheelwright, with no opportunity 
to provide for the future, he determined on 
coming to the United States. With his 
family he took passage on a sailing vessel, 
and after a voyage of five weeks he landed 
in New York. Our subject has but a faint 
recollection of the voyage, but as a reminder 
he still retains in his possession the box in 
which the provisions of the family were 
stored during the voyage. 

After spending a few weeks in Alexan- 
dria, Pennsylvania, the family came west to 
Carroll coimty, Illinois. Leaving there his 




JAMES PANKHURST, M. D. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



69 



family, John Pankhurst trudged on foot to 
Grand Detour, where he obtained a respon- 
sible position with the Grand Detour Plow 
Company, and here brought the family. 
He did not, however, remain but one year, 
when he went to Jackson county, Iowa, 
where he also remained one year. Being 
offered the foremanship in the wood depart- 
ment of the plow company, he returned to 
Grand Detour, and here spent the remain- 
der of his days. He remained with the 
company for ten years after its removal to 
Dixon, but still retained his home in Grand 
Detour. His death, the result of an acci- 
dent, occurred July 14, 1S96. His good 
wife passed away September 26, 1S94, at 
the age of eighty-nine years. Both were 
devoted members of the Church of England, 
and were firm in the faith. They were the 
parents of eight children, — Stephen, John, 
William, Sarah, Edward, Selina, James and 
Jane. Of these, John died in infancy, and 
Sarah in early childhood. In politics, John 
Parikhurst was a stanch Republican. He 
was a highly respected citizen of the village, 
esteemed for his many e.\ceilent qualities of 
head and heart. 

The subject of this sketch was but six 
years of age when he came to Ogle county, 
and in the district schools of Grand Detour 
township he received his primary education. 
When the Civil war broke out he was but 
sixteen, and one year later, on the 2nd of 
June, 1862, he enlisted in Company H, 
Sixty-ninth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, un- 
der Colonel Tucker, anil was mustered into 
the service at Chicago. He was stationed 
at Camp Douglas, Chicago, doing guard 
duty, and was continued there the term of 
his service, being discharged September 27, 
1862. 

Returning home after receiving his dis- 



charge, our young soldier commenced work 
in the plow factory, and until June, 1865, 
worked in the summer and attended school 
in the winter. In the meantime, as the op- 
portunity was afforded him, he read medi- 
cine under the instruction of Dr. C. E. 
Loornis, of Grand Detour, and in the fall 
of 1S65, entered the medical department of 
the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, 
where he remained until the following spring. 
He then entered the office of Dr. J. B. Sny- 
der, then practicing in Grand Detour, but 
now of Polo, Illinois. In 1867 he went to 
Rush Medical College, Chicago, and finish- 
ing the prescribed course, was graduated 
from that institution in February, 1S68. 
After receiving his diploma, the Doctor re- 
turned to Grand Detour and formed a part- 
nership with his former preceptor. Dr. Sny- 
der, which continued one year. He then 
purchased his partner's interest, since which 
time he has been alone in practice 

Dr. Pankhurst has been thrice married, 
and by his first union there was one daugh- 
ter, Bessie C. , who is now in Chicago, and 
is a student in the Armour Institute. His 
second union was with Miss Frances Foxley, 
a native of England, and their marriage was 
celebrated May 17, 1884. She departed 
this life November 24, 1894. The Doctor 
was again married, January 22, 1896, his 
third union being with Miss May U. Shef- 
field, who was born January 28, 1861, and 
daughter of Amos A. and Elizabeth (Sco- 
field) Sheffield, of whom mention is made 
elsewhere in this work. 

Politically Dr. Pankhurst is a Repub- 
lican, and is at present a member of the 
Republican central committee of Ogle coun- 
ty. He has always taken a commendable 
interest in politics, but never in a sense of 
being an office seeker. Believing it the 



JO 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



duty of every citizen to exercise the rights 
of franchise, he endeavors to keep posted 
in the political issues of the day that he may 
intelligently do his duty. It is, however, 
as a physician that he is best known, and 
his professional duties require the greater 
part of his time. He is a member of the 
Ogle County Medical Society and the North- 
ern Illinois Medical Association, in the meet- 
ings of which he takes an active part. He 
is medical examiner for the New York Life 
Insurance Company, of New York, the New 
York Mutual and the Union Central Life 
Insurance Company, of Cincinnati, and 
others. Religiously, he and his daughter 
are members of the Episcopal church. The 
Doctor is a good physician, a loyal citizen, 
a kind neighbor, and steadfast friend of 
those with whom he has so long been asso- 
ciated, and he and his wife are held in high 
esteem. 



MICHAEL N. SWINGLEY is one of 
Ogle county's honored pioneers and 
most highly esteemed citizens, having made 
his home here almost continuously since 
September, 1845. '^s an agriculturist he 
has taken an active and prominent part in 
its growth and development, and given his 
support to those enterprises which he be- 
lieved calculated to advance the general 
welfare. He now owns and operates a well 
improved farm of seventy acres on section 
15, Leaf River township. 

Mr. Swingley was born in Washington 
county, Maryland, March 19, 1S22, a son 
of Hon. Michael Swingley, also a native of 
that state and a grandson of Nicholas 
Swingley, a native of Pennsylvania. His 
great-grandfather was born in Switzerland 
and was among the first settlers of Lancas- 



ter county, Pennsylvania. At an early day 
Nicholas Swingley removed to Washington 
county, Maryland, where his son Michael 
was reared. The latter, on attaining to 
man's estate, wedded Miss Mary Newcomer, 
also a native of Maryland. He owned and 
operated the old Swingley homestead and 
reared his family there, but in 1845 emi- 
grated to Ogle county, Illinois, taking up 
his residence in Mt. Morris township, where 
he bought a claim and entered land amount- 
ing to about eight hundred acres. Here he 
opened up and improved a large farm, sup- 
plied with good buildings. He was one of 
the honest yeomanry and successful business 
men of the county. He was a soldier of 
the war of 181 2, and held a number of of- 
ficial positions of honor and trust in Mary- 
land, representing his district one or more 
terms in the state legislature. He died in 
Ogle county in 1852, and his wife, who sur- 
vived him many years, passed away in Feb- 
ruary, 1870. To them were born eight 
children, five sons and three daughters, all 
of whom are still living with the exception 
of our son. Benjamin, the eldest, is now 
living retired in Mt. Morris; Samuel is a 
resident of Kansas City, Missouri; George 
died in St. Louis; Michael N., of this re- 
view, is the next in order of birth; Mrs. 
Elizabeth Allen resides in Mt. Morris; Mrs. 
Mary l->aker lives in Polo; Mrs. Martha 
Highbarger makes her home in Montana; 
and William lives in Oregon, Illinois. 

Michael N. Swingley is indebted to the 
common schools of his native state for his 
educational privileges, and there he grew to 
manhood. Coming with the family to Ogle 
county in 1S45, he was put to work at driv- 
ing an ox team used in breaking prairie and 
soon became familiar with all the arduous 
duties which fall to the lot of the pioneer. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



;t 



In the fall of 1846 he returned to Maryland 
where he spent the winter, and on again 
coming to this state resumed work on the 
home farm. About the ist of April, 1849, 
he started overland for California, overtook 
a train in Nebraska, and reached his desti- 
nation in August of that year. He engaged 
in prospecting and mining until the spring 
of 1850, when he started for home by way 
of the Nicaraugua route. He was obliged 
to spend the whole winter on the Isthmus, 
finally in the spring secured passage on a 
vessel bound for Cuba, where he was again 
delayed until a vessel arrived which would 
take him to New Orleans. However, he 
at length reached home in 1851 and resumed 
farming in Mt. Morris township, where 
he carried on operations until i860. 

In August, 1854, in that township, Mr. 
Swingley married Miss Susan Welty, who 
was born in the same neighborhood as our 
subject. Her father, John Welty, was also 
a native of Washington county, Maryland, 
and in 1846 came to Illinois. He improved 
a farm in Mt. Morris township, on which 
he reared his family. His wife, who bore 
the maiden name of Mary Wolff, departed 
this life in 1875. Mrs. Swingley was reared 
and educated in Mt. Morris township. Our 
subject and his wife have two children: 
Mary is the wife of Leroy Her, of Leaf Riv- 
er township, and has two children: Verna, 
who is a student in the Leaf River schools; 
and Ray, who is attending the home school. 
Cora is the wife of James Wilson, of 
Winnebago county, Illinois, and they have 
four children: Lottie, Altha and Nellie, who 
are attending the home school; and Harry, 
at home. 

In 1855 Mr. Swingley removed to Polo, 
where he made his home until 1859, and 
then again made an overland trip to Cali- 



fornia. This time he located in Sacra- 
mento City, where he engaged in the livery 
business for about two years, returning to 
Ogle county in February, 1861. For several 
years thereafter he followed farming in Mt. 
Morris township, and in 1869 removed to 
Stephenson county, Illinois, where he op- 
erated rented land for about three years. 
On his return to Ogle county, in 1S73, he 
purchased his present place in Leaf River 
township, on which a fairly good house was 
standing and which was slightly improved. 
To its further development and cultivation 
he has since devoted his energies with 
marked success, and now has a well-im- 
proved farm pleasantly situated three miles 
northwest of Leaf River. 

Mr. Swingley cast his first presidential 
vote for James K. Polk in 1844, and has 
never wavered in his allegiance to the De- 
mocracy. In religious faith he is a Lutheran, 
while his wife holds membership in the 
Christian church, and they stand high in 
the community where they have so long 
made their home. Those who know them 
best are numbered among their warmest 
friends, and no citizens in Leaf River town- 
ship are more honored or highly respected. 



JACOB RICE, deceased, was numbered 
among the pioneers of 1837, and, like all 
others who came at that early day, he ex- 
perienced the privations incidental to the 
settlement of a new country. He was born 
in Washington county, Maryland, and was 
the son of Jacob and Mary (Roland) Rice, 
both of whom were natives of the same 
county and state, and of whom special men- 
tion is made in the sketch of Isaac Rice, on 
another page of this work. 

In his native state our subject com- 



72 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD, 



menced his education in tlie common 
schools, and on coming to Ogle county he 
attended a pioneer school taught by his older 
brother, Joshua, who engaged in teaching 
soon after their arrival. He was a well ed- 
ucated young man and gave his younger 
brothers excellent instruction. In 1843 he 
left school and assisted his father on the 
farm in Mt. Morris township, continuing with 
him until he was twenty-seven years old, 
when he rented one hundred acres of land 
in Maryland township and commenced life 
for himself. 

On the 1 1 th of December, 185 i, he was 
united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth 
Zeigler, a native of Jefferson county, Vir- 
ginia, born September 7, 1833, and daugh- 
ter of Jacob and Margaret (Stanger) Zeigler, 
the former born in Washington county, 
Maryland, January 15, 1795, and the latter 
in Alsace Loraine, at that time in the 
kingdom of France, but which is now a part 
of Germany, September 12, 1796. She 
came to this country with her parents when 
but eight years old. They came to .America 
in 1830 and first located in Jefferson coun.- 
ty, Virginia, but four years later moved to 
Clark county, Ohio, where he engaged in 
farming in connection with his trade as 
cooper. In 1S41 he came to Ogle county 
and settled in Leaf River township, where 
he took up three hundred acres of govern- 
ment land, paying the regular price of one 
dollar and twenty-five cents per acre for the 
greater part of it. A portion of the land 
had been staked as a claim by another party 
on which he had erected a small cabin. 
For this he had to give a small bonus. He 
was permitted to enjoy his new possessions 
but a very short time, his death occurring 
in 1843. Jacob Zeigler and wife were the 
parents of eiglit children, as follows: Mary 



Ann, born July 22, 181S; Lavina, January 
I, 1821; Caroline, October 16, 1823; Mar- 
garet A., March 4, 1826; Samuel C. , Jan- 
uary 23, 1828; John D., March 27, 1830, 
Elizabeth, September 7, 1833; Jane C, 
June II, 1840. Mrs. Zeigler died October 
29, 1874. In politics Jacob Zeigler was a 
Whig, and, religiously, a Methodist. The 
family were of some note in the old world, a 
granduncle of Mrs. Rice being an officer 
under the first Napoleon, serving with him 
in many of his wars. 

To Jacob and Elizabeth Rice three sons 
were born — William A., August 4, 1854; 
Frederick N., August 5, 1859; and Eldridge 
E., December 3, 1863. Alb are residing at 
home. 

On the death of his father our subject 
moved to the home place, which comprised 
one hundred and sixty acres of choice land. 
There he continued to farm during the re- 
mainder of his life. In addition to general 
farming he was engaged somewhat exten- 
sively in stock raising, in which he was 
quite successful. About 1884 he was strick- 
en with creeping paralysis, and after linger- 
ing along for ten years passed peacefully 
away, February 2, 1894. In politics he 
was for many years a Republican, but in 
1S84 he voted for St. John, the Prohibition 
candidate for president, and continued to 
vote with the Prohibition jiarty until the 
end of his life. He never aspired to any 
official position, but served as school di- 
rector for years. Religiously he was a 
Methodist, holding membership with the 
church in Mt. Morris. He was a firm be- 
liever in Christ, and died in the full assur- 
ance of faith. 

Mrs. Rice still lives upon the old home 
place, and like her husband is respected by 
all who know her. She is also a member 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



7S 



of the Methodist Episcopal church, and has 
a Hvely interest in ail that concerns her fel- 
lowmen. She well remembers hearing 
her mother tell of crossing the ocean in a 
sail vessel, being three months upon the 
water. She has also a vivid recollection of 
the journey made by the family to Illinois. 
They started from their Ohio home with 
some stock and barnyard fowls, and in com- 
ing into the state were stuck fast in a snow 
drift. Her mother brought the first turkeys 
that were ever brought into northern Illi- 
nois. When they came to the county 
wild game was very plentiful. Wolves 
were in great numbers, and often when 
Mrs. Rice was sent after the cows she 
could hear the wolves on all sides. Her 
father dying so soon after their arrival, 
her mother was compelled to attend to all 
the farm duties, and often hired her grain 
hauled to Chicago, where it was disposed of. 
Those were days of trial and hardships 
which those of the present generation can 
have no conception, but they had to be en- 
dured. Out of it all has grown the finest 
country on the face of the globe, and to 
such men and women as Jacob Rice and his 
wife the credit is due. 



H 



ENRY COFFMAN. — Prominent among 
the energetic, progressive and success- 
ful business men of Ogle county are the 
gentlemen composing the firm of Coffman 
Brothers, e.xtensive breeders and dealers in 
pure blooded shorthorn cattle, in which 
business they have been engaged for the 
past eight years. They are representatives 
of one of the old and prominent families of 
the 'County, being sons of Abraham Coft- 
man, who was born in Washington county, 
Maryland, May 5, iSiS. John Coffman, 



the grandfather, was also a native of that 
state, and in 1840 came to Ogle county, 
where he pre-empted a large tract of land, 
and, in company with several families, the 
Coffman family drove across the country 
with teams. 

Abraham Coffman, our subject's father, 
located on a tract of eighty acres in Mary- 
land township, to which he added by subse- 
quent purchase until he had a valuable 
farm of two hundred and eighty acres. 
This he broke and improved with good 
buildings, making it one of the most desir- 
able places in the locality. In this county 
he married Miss Caroline Wagner, also a 
native of Washington county, Maryland, 
and a daughter of Henry Wagner, who set- 
tled in Ogle county as early as 1838, but 
died a few years later at the age of forty- 
five. For several years Mr. Coffman con- 
tinued to operate his farm in Maryland 
township, becoming one of its most sub- 
stantial and well-to-do citizens, but his last 
days were spent in retirement in the village 
of Forreston, where he bought residence 
property. There he passed away July 11, 
1895, at the age of seventy-seven years, 
honored and respected by all who knew 
him. His estimable wife is still living in 
Forreston at the age of seventy-three. To 
this worthy couple were born eight children, 
all of whom reached years of maturity, but 
only two are now living: Henry, of this 
review, and Isaiah T., the junior member 
of the firm of Coffman Brothers, who was 
born on the old homestead and like his 
brother was educated in the local schools. 
Those deceased are as follows: Elizabeth, 
who married William A. Harris, a business 
man of Adeline, Ogle county, and died 
there leaving one daughter; Mary A.; 
Amanda; Ada Alice; Joseph N., who died 



74 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



at about the age of nineteen years, and 
Charles Eugene, who resided in Iowa with 
his brother, Henry W., and died in IHinois 
at the age of twenty-seven years. 

Henry W. Coffman was born January 
3,1849, on the old homestead on section 5, 
Maryland township, where he now resides, 
and is the second in order of birth in his 
father's family. After reaching man's es- 
tate he went to Grundy county, Iowa, where 
he bought land, but in 1883 became a resi- 
dent of Ackley, that state, where for sev- 
en years he successfully engaged in the ag- 
ricultural implement business. He built up 
an excellent trade, but finally sold out to 
an advantage and returned to Ogle county. 
In partnership with his brother he took 
charge of the home farm, and in connection 
with general farming have engaged in the 
breeding of shorthorn cattle since 1891, 
having upon their place a fine herd of fifty 
thoroughbreds, with Cruickshank, a regis- 
tered bull, at the head. As upright, relia- 
ble business men, the brothers have become 
widely known, and in all their undertakings 
have been unusually successful. 

On the 27th of October, 18S7, in Har- 
din county, Iowa, Henry W. Coffman was 
united in marriage with Miss Carrie Walker, 
a daughter of Jacob Walker. She was born 
in Clinton county, Pennsylvania, but was 
mostly reared and educated in Hardin coun- 
ty, Iowa. Her father removed from the 
latter state to Illinois in March, 1896, and 
is now engaged in business in Freeport. He 
is a carpenter by trade and formerly fol- 
lowed contracting and building. To Mr. 
and Mrs. Coffman have been born four 
children, namely: Raymond A., Merritt J. 
and Hazel Ruth, all living; and Wava Gleo, 
deceased. The home of this family is one 
of the most hospitable in Ogle county; the 



stranger within its doors are made to feel at 
ease; and their many friends and acquaint- 
ances are always sure of a hearty welcome. 
In politics Mr. Coffman is independent. 



ELLAS G. BOWERS, an energetic and 
progressive farmer residing on section 
10, Brookville township, has spent almost 
his entire life in Ogle county, and as one of 
its public-spirited citizens uses his influence 
in advancing its welfare, materially aiding 
all beneficial schemes for promoting its 
prosperity. Mr. Bovvers was born in North- 
umberland county, Pennsylvania, March 15, 
1844, but in June of that year was brought 
to this county, where amid frontier scenes 
he grew to manhood. 

His father, Henry Bowers, was also a 
native of Northumberland county, Penn- 
sylvania, born in October, 180S, and was a 
son of Jacob flowers, a farmer by occupa- 
tion, who reared his family in that county, 
but spent the last years of his life in Stark 
county, Ohio. Henry Bowers wedded Miss 
Mary Magdalene Garman, a native of 
Northumberland county and a daughter of 
Martin Garman. During his early life Mr. 
Bowers was employed on public works, 
principally canal and bridge building, but in 
May, 1844, started by team, with several 
other Pennsylvania families, for Ogle county, 
Illinois, and on his arrival here bought a 
claim of one hundred and sixty acres and 
turned his attention to farming. He de- 
veloped a fine farm from the unbroken 
prairie, in 1850 erected thereon a large 
brick residence and later a large barn, and 
was acknowledged to be one of the most 
skillful and successful agriculturists of the 
locality. Having prospered in his new home 
he was able to spend his last years in re- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



75 



tirement from active labor and in 1S65 re- 
moved from the farm to Forreston, where 
he passed away February 4, 1882. The 
mother of our subject had died in August, 
1850, and he subsequently married again, 
his second wife dying in April, 1872. 

EliasG. Bowers, the only child born to his 
parents, was reared on the home farm where 
he now lives and acquired his education in 
the district schools of the neighborhood. 
On the 1st of April, 1864, he enlisted for 
three months in Company D, One Hundred 
and Forty-second Illinois Volunteer Infan- 
try, which was assigned to the Army of the 
Tennessee. He was on guard duty most of 
the time, along railroads, and was honor- 
ably discharged on the expiration of his term 
of enlistment, but he later joined Company 
I, Ninety-second Illinois Mounted Infantry, 
which became a part of Kilpatrick's cav- 
alry. The regiment proceeded to North 
Carolina, where they remained until the war 
was over. Mr. Bowers was mostly on de- 
tailed duty with a wagon train, and when 
hostilities ceased and his services were no 
longer needed he was discharged at Chicago 
in August, 1865, and returned home. 

After the war Mr. Bowers ran a thresh- 
ing machine and engaged in other labors 
until the fall of 1867, when he went to 
Pennsylvania, spending five years in North- 
umberland and Dauphin counties. He was 
first employed by a company engaged in 
manufacturing lumber, but the last two 
years was interested in the hotel business 
with his brother-in-law, at Lykens, Dauphin 
county. Disposing of his property in the 
east, he returned to Ogle county in 1873 
and took charge of the old home farm. 
He has since remodeled the residence and 
outbuildings and now has one of the best 
improved places in the locality. 



While in Northumberland county, Penn- 
sylvania, Mr. Bowers was married, Decem- 
ber 26, i86g, to Miss Sarah Engle, who was 
born, reared and educated in that county, 
and is a daughter of Abram Engle. Five 
children were born of this union: Alice, wife 
of Harvey C. Good, of Carroll county, Illi- 
nois; Henry W., who is now a member of 
the First South Dakota Volunteer Infantry, 
and is one of the brave bojs now stationed 
at Manila; and Agnes, William A. and John 
J., all at home. 

Mr. Bowers cast his first presidential 
ballot for Samuel J. Tilden, in 1876, and 
has always supported the Democratic party. 
For the past twenty years he has taken quite 
an active and prominent part in local politics, 
and has most creditably served his fellow 
citizens as constable, justice of the peace, 
township assessor, treasurer, and as super- 
visor for four years, during which time he 
was a member of several important com- 
mittees. He was also a member of the 
school board for several years, and served 
as clerk of the district eight years. Socially 
he is a prominent member of Brookville 
Lodge, I. O. O, F., which he has repre- 
sented in the Grand Lodge eight years, and 
in which he has passed through all the 
chairs and is now past grand. He also 
belongs to the Grand Army post at For- 
reston, and is one of the most popular and 
influential citizens of his community. 



EDWARD C. BUTERBAUGH, who re- 
sides upon his fine farm of two hundred 
and forty acres on section 11, Mt. Morris 
township, is a native of Ogle county, and was 
born in this county July 8, 1863. He is 
the son of Henry and Catherine (Hershey) 
Buterbaugh, the former born July 22, 1819, 



76 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



in Bedford county, Pennsylvania, and the 
latter of Washington county, Maryland, 
born June 25, 1821. Henry Buterbaugh 
was the son of Stephen and Susan Buter- 
baugh, who were natives of Pennsylvania 
and Maryland, respectively. 

Henry Buterbaugh received but a lim- 
ited education in the common schools of his 
native county and was reared to farm life. 
After his marriage with Catherine Hershey, 
November 18, 1844, he removed with his 
bride to Ogle county, Illinois, coming west 
with a team in 1847. On his arrival he 
purchased a farm of two hundred and forty 
acres of land in Mt. Morris township, to 
which he later added two hundred and forty 
acres more, giving him an estate of four 
hundred and eighty acres. He was an act- 
ive and prosperous farmer, a member of 
the German Baptist church, and was a good 
friend and neighbor. In politics he was a 
Democrat, and for many years served as 
school director of his district. He died 
March 22, 1883, and his remains were laid 
to rest in Silver Creek cemetery. His wife 
is yet living and makes her home in the 
village of Mt. Morris. Like her husband, 
she is a member of the German Baptist 
church, a true Christian woman, and one 
deserving the love and esteem in which she 
is held. They were the parents of eight 
children. Emma married William Thomas, 
but is now deceased. Alice married Wil- 
loughby Felter and resides on the old home- 
stead. John, Joseph, Mary, Ella and Mar- 
tin are deceased. Mary married George 
Thomas and became the mother of three 
children. 

Edward C. Buterbaugh, the subject of 
this sketch, is the youngest member of the 
family. He was reared on the home farm 
and in the district school received his edu- 



cation. At the age of seventeen he com- 
menced life for himself, renting the home 
farm and engaging in its cultivation. Two 
years later he became sole proprietor of 
the place. On the 14th of December, 1882, 
he was united in marriage with Miss Mary 
Bopp, who was born in Washington county, 
Maryland, December 21, 1862, and daugh- 
ter of John and Matilda (Secore) Bopp, the 
former born in Dauphin county, Pennsyl- 
vania, October 16, 1829, and the latter in 
Adams county, Pennsylvania, September 14, 
1828. They were the parents of si.x chil- 
dren, as follows: John H., born September 
2, 1856; Benjamin P., January 26, 1858^ 
William T. , August 13, 1859; Mary E., 
December 2, 1862; Emma J., December 2, 
1866; and Ida M., September 26, 1871. 
The three sons and the mother are now de- 
ceased, the latter dying October 31, 1896. 

After residing in Washington county, 
Maryland, until 1864, John Bobb removed 
with his family to Montgomery county, 
Ohio, where they resided eleven years, Mr. 
Bopp engaging in farming. In 1876 they 
came to Ogle county, Illinois, to make a 
permanent home. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Buterbaugh four chil- 
dren have been born: Edith, December 
18, 1S83; Clinton, June 23, 1885; Pearl, 
October 21, 1886, and Chester, December 
II, 1S87. The latter died September 5, 
1 888, after an illness of two weeks. The 
remaining children are all attending the 
public school, and it is the design of the par- 
ents to give them good education. 

After giving his entire time and atten- 
tion to the cultivation of his farm until 
1893, Mr. Buterbaugh rented the same, but 
still remained upon the place, and has given 
his attention to stock raising e.xclusively. 
He makes a specialty of the red polled cat- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



n 



tie and Poland-China hogs. He has also a 
number of draught and road horses, but in 
all probability give his attention to road- 
sters. He thoroughly understands the 
stock business, and in that line has met with 
good success. Since coming into full pos- 
session of the farm, he has made upon it 
many valuable improvements, and keeps it 
at all times under a high state of cultivation. 
In politics he is a Democrat, and a stanch 
advocate of the principles of the party, but 
he is not a politician in the common accep- 
tation of the term. As a farmer he has 
thoroughly demonstrated his abilities. As 
a citizen he enjoys the respect of all who 
know him. 



SAMUEL W. POWELL, residing on sec- 
tion I, Buffalo township, a prosperous 
farmer and stock raiser, has been a resident 
of Ogle county since May 2, 1854. He was 
born in Washington county, Maryland, De- 
cember 3, 1834, and is a son of Upton Pow- 
ell, a native of the same county and state, 
who was born in 1801. The paternal grand- 
father, Jonathan Powell, was a native of 
Wales, a seafaring man in early life, but 
who settled in Washington county, Mary- 
land, at an early day. 

Upton Powell grew to manhood in his 
native county and received a limited educa- 
tion in the common schools of that early 
day. In his youth he learned the miller's 
trade, an occupation he followed until he 
went to farming, while yet residing in Mary- 
land. He there married Miss Anna Smith, 
a native of Maryland, of German ancestry, 
and they became the parents of seven chil- 
dren, all of whom grew to mature years. 
Mary Ann died a single lady. Susan mar- 
ried John N. Winders, and is now a widow, 



residing in Polo, Illinois. Samuel W. is 
third in order of birth. John A. is residing 
in Polo. Jacob H. is also living in Polo. 
Catherine is the wife of John M. Davis, a 
substantial farmer of Buffalo township, of 
whom mention is made elsewhere in this 
work. William is a farmer of Pine Creek 
township. 

Fully convinced that better opportuni- 
ties were open before him in the great Prai- 
rie state, and having in Ogle county a nuni- 
berof old friends and neighbors, Upton Pow- 
ell determined here to find for himself and 
family a new home. In the fall of 1853, 
he came out and selected a location in Pine 
Creek township, purchasing a partially im- 
proved place of four hundred and fifty-one 
acres, and in April, 1854, left his old home 
with his family and arrived here May 2, 
1854. With characteristic energy, he com- 
menced to improve the place, in due time 
erecting a good residence, barn, and various 
outbuildings. From time to time he added 
to his possessions until he became the owner 
of over eight hundred acres of good farming 
land. He was quite prosperous and became 
a well-known citizen of the county. He 
lived upon the old place for some years, and 
then moved to a farm near Polo, where his 
death occurred about 1883. His wife passed 
away some years previously. 

In his native county our subject spent 
his boyhood and youth, assisting his father 
upon the farm and in the mill, in the mean- 
time attending the common school as the 
opportunity was given him. He came with 
the family to Ogle county and continued to 
assist his father for some years, dividing his 
time between the saw mill and the farm. 
He was married January 20, i860, to Miss 
Sarah Hays, a native of Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland, and daughter of Henry Hays, 



78 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



also a native of the same county and state, 
and who Hkewise came to Ogle county in 
May, 1854, locating in Pine Creek town- 
ship. By this union three sons were born. 
William H. is married and is engaged in 
farming in Black Hawk county, Iowa. John 
Upton and George W. yet reside at home, 
assisting in the farm work, and with their 
father are making a business of fattening 
cattle and hogs for the markets. They are 
also interested in a meat market at Mt. 
Morris, and also furnish dressed meat for a 
market in Oregon. 

After his marriage Mr. Powell located 
on the sawmill place, and carried on the 
mill and engaged in farming for three years. 
In 1864 he purchased the farm where he 
now resides, consisting of but one hundred 
and si.xty acres at that time. He later added 
one hundred and si.xty acres more, and still 
later fifteen acres, making the home farm 
contain three hundred and thirty-frve acres. 
He has also three hundred and sixteen 
acres in Pine Creek township, divided into 
four small farms, and has fifty acres in 
Grand Detour township. The home farm 
presents a very neat and attractive appear- 
ance with its fine residence and barn, nu- 
merous outbuildings, fruit and ornamental 
trees. Everything about the place denotes 
the energy and thrift of the owner. In 
addition to the cultivation of grain, he has 
given much attention to stock raising, mak- 
ing a specialty of Poland-China hogs. 

Politically Mr. Powell is a Democrat, 
having voted the ticket since casting his 
first presidential vote for James Buchanan 
in 1 8 56. He has been honored by his 
friends and neighbors with various local 
offices, serving as highway commissioner 
some eighteen or twenty years and as su- 
pervisor one term, in 1894-5. After an in- 



terval of two years he was again elected 
in 1 898 and is now serving in that capac- 
ity. During his first term he was on 
several important committees, and is now 
a member of the equalization and of the 
finance committee. Interested in the pub- 
lic schools, he has served as school director 
for some twenty-five or thirty years. 

An active and enterprising man, Mr. 
Powell is highly regarded by all who know 
him, and his friends are not confined to 
those of his own party. Broad-minded and 
liberal, he commands the respect of all. 
In the forty-five years of his residence in 
Ogle county he has been an active factor in 
its progress and has done his full share 
in its development. Success has crowned 
his efforts, but no one envies him for that 
he has, knowing that it has been gained by 
honest efforts. 



CHARLES AYRES, deceased, was a 
prominent farmer of Woosung town- 
ship, one well known in Lee and Ogle 
counties. He was born in Huntingdon 
county, Penns3lvania, September 13, 1824, 
and was the son of Ludlum and Susanna 
(Sharer) Ayres, who emigrated from Penn- 
sylvania to Illinois in 1S45, locating in 
Franklin Grove, Lee county, where they 
remained until i860, when they moved to 
the southern part of the state, where they 
spent about one year, and then returned to 
Lee county, where the remainder of their 
lives were spent. They had a family of 
eight children, two of whom died in child- 
hood. Those growing to maturity were 
Charles H., Matthew, John, William, 
Thomas and Ludlum Smith. 

The subject of this sketch spent his boy- 
hood and 3'outh in his native state, and in 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



79 



the schools of that state received his educa- 
tion. This was, however, supplemented by 
attendance in the schools of Dixon, after 
the removal of the family to this state. He 
remained with his parents until twenty-two 
years old, when he began life for himself, 
cultivating a farm and operating two thresh- 
ing machines during the seasons. He was 
united in marriage June i, 1S55, with Miss 
Mary J. Crush, who was born March 7, 
1834, and daughter of Isaac and Catherine 
(Burns) Crush, the former a native of Lan- 
caster county, Pennsylvania, and the latter 
of Huntingdon county, in the same state. 
Isaac Crush was the son of Isaac Crush, 
Sr. , a native of Germany, and a farmer by 
occupation, who died in Lancaster county, 
Pennsylvania. Isaac Crush was by trade a 
miller, and also followed the trade of cooper. 
In 1846 he came with his family to Ogle 
county, and located in Pine Creek township, 
where he purchased a farm of one hundred 
and sixty acres, which he operated until 
within a few years before his death, when 
he retired from active life, and died at tlie 
residence of his son in Paul City, Nebraska. 

Isaac and Catherine Crush were the 
parents of ten children, eight of whom grew 
to maturity — Philip, John, William, James, 
Mary J., Elizabeth, Emma and Catherine. 
Two died in infancy. Mrs. Catherine Crush 
passed to her reward in 185 i, and later Mr. 
Crush married Mrs. Catherine (Lutz) Eshel- 
man, a widow, and by this marriage there 
was one daughter, Vernie. 

To Charles and Mary J. Ayres eight 
children were born. Elsie M., born June 
17, 1856, died June 2, 1892. Samuel R., 
born December 28, 1857, is now living in 
Hardin county, Ipwa; he married Miss Delia 
Miller, of Washington county, Maryland, 
and they have a son, Charles L. Johnnie 



E., born December 28, 1859, died January 
IS, 1861. Alma S., born January I 5, 1861, 
is now the wife of C. E. Parks, and they 
have one child, Clarence C, born January 
I, 1888; they reside on the old hornestead. 
Lillie S., born December 31, 1863, married 
John Lampen, and they live in Pine Creek 
township. Henry P., born August 15, 1869, 
died June 6, 1895. Charles, born August 
5, 1866, died March 17, 1867. Lena May, 
born June 28, 1872, died February 6, 1875. 

Mr. Ayres purchased the farm on which 
his widow now resides, on section 8, Woo- 
sung township, from his brother William, 
wiio entered the land from the government. 
In 1855, soon after his marriage, he built a 
small house, which is now used as an ice 
house. The second house in which the 
family lived was erected a few years after, 
and is now used as a shop. In 1874 he 
erected the house in which the famil}' now 
live, and which is a commodious and com- 
fortable structure. As his means would per- 
mit, Mr. Ayers added to the improvements 
of the place, erecting a large barn, and put- 
ting up other outbuildings, setting out fruit 
and ornamental trees, and otherwise adding 
to the attractive appearance of the farm. 
He was a practical farmer and endeavored 
to keep up with the times in the way of im- 
provements. 

In politics, Mr. Ayres was a Republican, 
and a stanch advocate of the principles of 
the party. He served his neighborhood as 
school director for a number of years, as he 
always felt an interest in the public schools. 
He was also road commissioner a number of 
years. Religiously he was a member of the 
United Brethren church, in which he took 
great interest, being a firm believer in the 
Christian religion. His wife is also a mem- 
ber of that church. Mr. Ayres passed from 



8o 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



this life November i, 1880, his death being 
from asthma and consumption. He was a 
good man, and his death was a sad loss not 
only to his faithful wife, who was always a 
comfort and stay to him, but to the com- 
munity as well. His friends were numer- 
ous in both Lee and Ogle counties. 



THOMAS DIXON is one of the retired 
farmers who are living at their ease in 
the village of Byron, and who know right 
well how to take care of the property they 
accumulated in their younger years by un- 
tiring industry and economy. For a period 
of over forty years he was actively and suc- 
cessfully engaged in agricultural pursuits in 
Ogle county, but has now laid aside busi- 
ness cares to spend his remaming years in 
ease and retirement. 

Mr. Dixon comes from across the sea, 
being a native of England, born in Cum- 
berland county, February 10, 1834. His 
father, John Dixon, was a native of the 
same county and a son of Thomas Dixon, 
a farmer of that region. There the former 
grew to manhood and married Miss Ann 
Thompson, an English lady, who died in 
her native land about 1841. He was again 
married, but his second wife also died in 
England. In 1855 he and his family emi- 
grated to the United States, and on reach- 
ing the shores of this country proceeded at 
once to Ogle county, Illinois, arriving here 
in the fall of that year. He purchased a 
farm in Marion township and to its further 
improvement and cultivation devoted his 
energies until failing health caused his re- 
tirement. Although he was not well for 
some years, he lived to the ripe old age of 
seventy-eight, dying July 19, 1873. 

In his family were four children, two 



sons and two daughters, but the latter are 
both deceased. Sarah died unmarried, and 
Anna married Joshua Chain, of Byron, and 
died leaving three children. Our subject 
is the older son. Paul, born in England, 
in 1838, came with the family to the new 
world in 1855, and was married here to 
Miss Addie Millis, a native of Ogle county, 
and a daughter of John Millis, who was a 
pioneer of southern Illinois, and from this 
state went to California during the '50s. 
On his return he bought a farm in Marion 
township. Ogle county, where he success- 
fully engaged in agricultural pursuits for a 
number of years. Later he rented his farm 
and bought residence property in Byron, 
where he spent the last years of his life. 
After his marriage Paul Dixon engaged in 
farming for a number of years in Marion 
township, where he owned and occupied a 
farm of over one hundred acres, which he 
placed under a high state of cultivation. 
After the death of his wife he removed to 
Dixon, Illinois, where he now resides. He 
has two daughters, Eva and Sarah, both 
well educated young ladies. The latter at- 
tended the public schools of Byron and also 
the Rockford Commercial College, and is 
now successfully engaged in teaching in 
Ogle county. 

Thomas Dixon, of this review, was a 
young man of twenty years on the emigra- 
tion of the family to America, and he was 
of great assistance to his father in develop- 
ing and carrying on the home farm. After 
arriving at mature years he took charge of 
the place and business, remaining with his 
father until the latter's death, and caring 
for him during his declining years. Subse- 
quently he purchased the interests of the 
other heirs and succeeded to the old home- 
stead, on which he made many substantial 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



8i 



and useful improvements. After operating 
it for some years he sold and purchased a 
farm of one hundred and fifty acres in Scott 
township, near Stillman Valley. He lo- 
cated thereon, and for a year was engaged 
in building and improving the place, erect- 
ing a good residence, barn, cribs and other 
outbuildings, and converting it into one of 
the best improved farms of the township. 
This work completed he rented it, and in 
1S97 removed to Byron, where he now 
lives, enjoying the rest he has so well earned 
and so truly deserves. The Republican 
party has found in him an earnest advocate 
of its principles since he cast his first vote 
for General U. S. Grant in 186S, and he 
has never missed a presidential election 
since that time. Although not a member 
of any religious denomination he attends 
and gives liberally toward the support of 
the Methodist Episcopal church. He and 
his brother are well known in Byron and 
Ogle county as men of exemplary habits 
and sterling worth, and this brief sketch of 
their lives will be read with interest by their 
many friends. 



WILLIAM STAHLHUT, an enterpris- 
ing farmer residing on section 9, Mt. 
Morris township, is a native of the town- 
ship, born August 7, 1S55, but is of German 
descent, his parents, August and Frederika 
(Bruns) Stahlhut, being natives of Hanover, 
Germany, the former born April 28, 1809, 
and the latter January 4, 18 18. They were 
reared and married in their native land, and 
in 1849 came to the United States with a 
party of immigrants, coming direct to Mt. 
Morris township, some of the party having 
relatives in this county. The father of 

Mrs. Stahlhut, the maternal grandfather of 

9 



our subject, was an officer of high rank in 
the German army, and commanded a por- 
tion of the German troops at the battle of 
Waterloo. 

August Stahlhut was a stonemason by 
trade. On his arrival in Mt. Morris, he 
found himself a stranger in a strange land, 
the language of the people being unfamiliar 
to him. He came, however, with the in- 
tention of becoming an American citizen, 
and to that end assimilated himself to his 
new surroundings. He at once found em- 
ployment at his trade, working on the new 
building of the Rock River Seminary, and 
on various private dwellings in course of 
erection. He continued to work at his trade 
and saving his earnings until he had accu- 
mulated sufficient to buy a farm, after which 
he turned his attention to agricultural pur- 
suits, and only occasionally working at his 
trade. August and Frederika Stahlhut 
were the parents of four children, the last 
born dying in infancy. August, born in No- 
vember, 1 84 1, in Germany, came with his 
parents to this country when in his eighth 
year. Here he grew to manhood, and dur- 
ing the dark days of the rebellion, when the 
president issued his call for more men, he 
offered his services to his adopted country 
and took his place within the ranks in Com- 
pany K, Ninety-second Illinois Volunteer 
Infantry. With his regiment he went to 
the front, and after being wounded in a 
skirmish near Jonesboro, Tennessee, he was 
taken prisoner and later confined in the 
dreaded Andersonville prison, where he re- 
covered from his wound, but was starved to 
death. Henry, born November 19, 1850, 
married Laura Feidt, and they have two 
children. He is a farmer in Mt. Morris 
township. William, our subject, was ne.xt 
in order of birth. 



82 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



William Stahlhut, our subject, was 
reared on the home farm in Mt. Morris 
township, and until eighteen years old at- 
tended the district school, receiving a fair 
common-school education. He was early 
learned the meaning of work and was required 
to do his share of the farm work. Leav- 
ing school at the age of eighteen years, in 
partnership with his brother, he purchased 
eighty acres of land and they connnenced 
farming for themselves. 

On the 23d of December, 1875, Mr. 
Stahlhut was united in marriage with Miss 
Lydia C. Thomas, born October 19, 1850, 
in Mt. Morris township, and daughter of 
Ezra and Elizabeth (Rice) Thomas, both of 
whom were natives of Washington county, 
Maryland, and who were among the early 
settlers of Ogle county. They were the 
parents of six children: William R., Jacob 
O., Martha J., Mary E., Lydia C. and Ben- 
jamin F. Mr. Thomas died at his home in 
Mt. Morris, of blood poisoning, March 20, 
1880. His wife survived him, dying March 
22, 1888. In politics he was a Republican. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Stahlhut seven chil- 
dren have been born, the first dying in in- 
fancy. Olive C, born March 14, 1878; 
Charles A., born November 29, 1881, died 
December 13, 1882; Benjamin A., born 
April 26, 18S4; William H., May 22, 1886; 
Edward Earl, December 23, 1888; and 
Jesse T., born July 23, 1894. Those living 
are all yet residing with their parents, and 
all are being given good education. 

After his marriage Mr. Stahlhut contin- 
ued to farm with his brother, and in Febru- 
ary, 18S7, he purchased forty acres more 
and has now a fine farm of one hundred and 
sixty acres, which is under a high state of 
cultivation. He has confined himself to no 
special fads, but has engaged in general 



farming. He has been raising mostly road 
horses, but has raised some Norman draft. 
Of cattle he has raised Hereford, but is now 
mostly engaged with Durhams. 

In politics Mr. Stahlhut is a Republican. 
He cast his first presidential vote for Ruth- 
erford B. Hayes in 1776, and has since con- 
tinued to vote the party ticket. He has 
held several local offices, including school 
director, school trustee and supervisor. In 
the latter office he served two terms and 
was a member of the board during the rail- 
road bond trouble, which run for a number 
of years. His wife is a member of the Lu- 
theran church, as is also his daughter, 
Olive. Active and enterprising, Mr. Stahl- 
hut keeps abreast with the times, lending 
aid and encouragement to all worthy enter- 
prises. With his family, he is held in the 
highest esteem, having many friends in all 
parts of the county. 



FREDERICK H. LEWIS. — Prominent 
among the more intelligent, active and 
enterprising citizens of Marion township is 
the gentleman whose name introduces this 
biography. His reputation for integrity and 
industry is second to none in the county, 
and being a man of rare intellectual attain- 
ments, he is authority on many questions 
with the people of the community. He 
owns and occupies a fine farm of two hun- 
dred acres on section 15, Marion township, 
and is successfully engaged in its operation. 
Mr. Lewis is a native son of Ogle coun- 
t\', his birth occurring on the farm where he 
now resides December 22, 1849. His 
father. Homer D. Lewis, was born near 
Ware, Massachusetts, in January, 1822, and 
was a son of David Lewis, also a native of 
Massachusetts, who with his family came to 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



8: 



Illinois in 1S37. His sons drove across the 
country with wagons and the family settled 
in Marion township, Ogle county, where he 
cleared and developed a farm, one mile west 
of the home of our subject. Here Homer 
D. Lewis grew to manhood and married 
Miss Adaline Bacon, also a native of the old 
Bay state and a daughter of Squire Bacon, 
who came west and died in Illinois. Mr. 
Lewis entered one hundred and sixty acres 
where his son is now living and soon trans- 
formed the wild land into highly cultivated 
and productive fields. To his original farm 
he later added two adjoining tracts of forty 
acres each, making a fine farm of two hun- 
dred and forty acres, which he improved 
with good buildings. He was one of the 
most active and successful farmers of the 
township and at one time owned seven hun- 
dred acres of valuable land, all of which 
property was acquired through his own in- 
dustry, enterprise and good management. 
He was honored with a number of responsi- 
ble official positions. From his farm he re- 
moved to Stillman Valley, but subsequently 
took up his residence in Rockford, where he 
passed away November 29, 1S97, at the age 
of seventy-five years. His wife survives 
him and still resides in that city. 

Frederick H. Lewis is the only son liv- 
ing in a family of five children. Loura M., 
his oldest sister, is the wife of H. H. Hurd, 
of Stillman Valley; Mary is the wife of Na- 
than James, of the same place; Carrie A. is 
the wife of William S. Ives, of Byron town- 
ship, Ogle county; and Lucy is the wife of 
John L. Keep and resides with her mother 
in Rockford. 

The subject of this review was reared in 
much the usual manner of farmer boys, and 
the knowledge he acquired in the district 
schools has been supplemented by a course 



in the Rockford High School and also in the 
Commercial College of that place. During 
his youth he assisted his father in the opera- 
tion of the home farm and then purchased 
eighty acres adjoining, on which he resided 
for ten years. At the end of that time he 
bought the old homestead, which he had 
previously rented, and in its skillful man- 
agement he is acknowledged to be one of 
the most progressive and systematic farmers 
of the community. 

On the 27th of December, 1871, in 
Marion township, Mr. Lewis was united in 
marriage with Miss Lucy A. Johnson, a 
daughter of Rev. G. S. Johnson, who served 
as postmaster of Stillman Valley continu- 
ously for about a quarter of a century. He 
was a native of Massachusetts, an early set- 
tler of Illinois, and was a direct descendant 
of John Alden, who came to America on the 
Mayflower, and for some time engaged in 
merchandising in Rockford, but spent the 
last years of his life in Stillman Valley. 
Mrs. Lewis was born in Ohio, but was 
reared in Ogle county, and being well edu- 
cated she became a successful and popular 
teacher. Our subject and his wife have a 
family of si.x children, all at home, namely: 
Charles, Harry, Julia, Fred and Frank, 
twins, and George. The daughter is a 
graduate of the Stillman Valley High School 
and is quite proficient in music, and the 
youngest ( son is now attending the high 
school at that place. 

Mr. Lewis is a member of the G. O. P., 
being an ardent Republican since casting 
his first vote for General U. S. Grant in 
1S72. He is a director of the Scott & Mar- 
ion Township Mutual Fire Insurance Com- 
pany, has been an active member of the 
school board for twenty years, and has 
served as its president and also clerk of the. 



84 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD, 



district most of the time. He is now serv- 
ing his second term as township trustee, 
and he has most capably and faithfully dis- 
charged the duties of every position he has 
been called upon to fill, whether in public 
or private life. He is one of the official 
members of the Congregational church of 
Stillman Valley, to which his family also 
belong, and in the best social circles of the 
community they occupy an enviable po- 
sition. 



FREDERICK ZICK, Pn. D., teacher 
and lawyer, is a prominent citizen of 
Polo, and one of the ablest lawyers practic- 
ing at the bar of Ogle county, having the 
mental grasp which enables him to discover 
the best points in a case. A man of sound 
judgment, he manages his cases with mas- 
terly skill and tact, and is regarded as one 
of the ablest jury advocates in this section 
of the state. He is a logical reasoner, able 
debater and forcible in argument, uniting a 
rare gift of oratory with the most convinc- 
ing logic that arouses the emotion and con- 
vinces the judgment. 

A native of Illinois, Mr. Zick was born 
in Thompson township, Jo Daviess county, 
October 20, 1858, and is a son of Frederick 
and Mary (Deuchman) Zick, both natives of 
the province of Waldec, Germany, the for- 
mer born about I Si 6 and the latter about 
1832. They were married in their native 
land and came to America in 1852, landing 
at New York after a long and tedious voy- 
age. After a short time spent in the me- 
tropolis they proceeded westward and lo- 
cated in Jo Daviess county, Illinois, where 
the father engaged in farming until 1877, 
when he laid aside all busmess cares. He 
then spent one year in Galena and his last 



days in the country near that city, where he 
passed away in 1879. His wife died in Jo 
Daviess county in 1866. To them were 
born two sons: John, who lives on a farm 
in Jo Daviess county; and Frederick, of this 
review. The paternal grandfather of our 
subject, John Zick, spent his entire life in 
Germany. 

Frederick Zick, our subject, is indebted 
to the district schools of Jo Daviess county 
for his early educational privileges, and he 
received his early training at farm work. 
When he arrived at his majority he decided 
to change his occupation, and took a pre- 
paratory course for teaching at the German- 
English College, then located at Galena, 
Illinois. He taught school two terms 
and graduated from the Northern Illinois 
College, Fulton, Illinois, in 1884. He 
read law one year with Judge McCoy, 
at Fulton, and then read one year in 
the law office of John J. Cole, Esq., at La 
Crosse, Wisconsin. He was admitted to 
the bar in the territory (now state) of North 
Dakota in 1886, and there entered upon the 
practice of his profession. He was state's 
attorney two years for Cavalier county, 
North Dakota, and in 1S91 located at Seat- 
tle, Washington, where he remained for two 
years and a half, during which time he 
gained an enviable reputation as a criminal 
lawyer. While at Seattle he tried many 
criminal cases, and appeared for the de- 
fense in two noted murder trials. He tried 
the case of S. N. Saddler, who was charged 
with murder in the first degree for stabbing 
a Greek fisherman on West street in Seattle, 
and secured his acquittal on the theory of 
self-defense. He tried the case of Mattia 
Leoni and Joseph Puccia, two Italians 
charged with murdering George Richards, 
on Mercer island,' in Lake Washington. 




FRED ZICK. 




GERTRUDE M. ZICK, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



89 



They buried the body in the lake and Leoni 
then went to Canada, where he was arrested 
and brought back for trial. Mr. Zick de- 
fended them on the theory of self-defense, 
and Leoni was convicted of manslaughter 
and sentenced to eighteen months in the 
penitentiary, and Puccia to three months in 
the county jail as accessory after the fact. 
In August, 1893, he came to Polo, Illinois, 
where his wife's parents reside, and here 
he has since been engaged in practice, 
meeting with a well-deserved success. 

In Polo, on the 29th day of April, 1890, 
was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Zick 
and Miss Gertrude M. Sanborn, a native of 
Ogle county, a graduate of the Northern 
Illinois College, of Fulton, a successful 
teacher in our public schools, and a daugh- 
ter of Ambrose and Elizabeth (Good) San- 
born. In his political affiliations our sub- 
ject is a Republican. He is city attorney 
of Polo, has one of the largest law libraries 
in the county, has a large office and probate 
practice and is well versed in all and every- 
thing necessary to make him a successful 
practitioner. Socially, he joined the Knights 
of Pythias while at Seattle and was elected 
a representative to the Grand Lodge in 
1893. He is a member of the Knights of 
the Globe and also of the Mystic Workers 
of the World, and is one of the supreme 
directors of the Mystic Workers. Person- 
ally Mr. Zick is a little over medium height, 
well proportioned, with black hair, grey 
eyes and strong features that indicate force 
and determination. 



HENRY LANDIS THOMAS.— Among 
the leading and representative agricult- 
urists of Ogle county, none stands higher 
in the estimation of his fellow men than the 



subject of this review, who owns and oper- 
ates a fine farm of two hundred acres on 
section 18, Rockvale township. He was 
born in Maryland, October 24, 1S38, a son 
of Joshua and Salina (Landis) Thomas, na- 
tives of Washington county, that state, the 
former born March 8, 181 1, the latter 
March 7, 18 12. The paternal grandpa- 
rents were Henry and Catherine Thomas, 
in whose family were the following children: 
Mrs. Susan Hoffan, deceased; Mrs. Ruan 
Newcomer, a resident of Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland; Joshua, father of our subject; 
Elias and Elizabeth. Our subject is the 
third in order of birth in a family of seven 
children, the others being: Permelia M., 
widow of Robert Hitt, of Polo, Illinois; 
Mary Catherine, wife of H. M. Funk, a 
hardware merchant of Polo, Illinois; L. F., 
who married Olga Smith, and conducts a 
paint, oil and sash store at Polo; Jacob 
Oskie, deceased; John, who married Martha 
Seyster and operated the old home farm; 
Lewis Ferdinand; and John Edwin. The 
mother of these children departed this life 
September 22, 1854, at the age of forty- 
two years, six months and fifteen days, and 
the father was again married, his second 
union being with Susan Felker, by whom he 
had five children: Ettie. deceased; Robert 
Lee, who married May McGuffin and lives 
on the old home farm; Frank F. and Olin 
M., who are also living with their mother on 
the home place; and one who died in in- 
fancy. 

Joshua Thomas, our subject's father, 
was educated in the common schools of 
Maryland and throughout life followed agri- 
cultural pursuits. He first came to Ogle 
county in the fall of 1S39, and purchased 
two hundred acres of government land for 
himself and father, who came here in 1840, 



90 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



it being bought at the land office in Dixon 
at one dollar and a quarter per acre when it 
came into market. After securing his land, 
Joshua Thomas returned east, but the fol- 
lowing year brought his family to their new 
home, making the trip overland. All of his 
land was unbroken with the exception of 
about three or four acres, which had been 
placed under cultivation, and the only 
building upon the place was a log house, 
but to its further improvement and cultiva- 
tion he at once turned his attention and 
soon converted the wild tract into a most 
desirable farm. In 1850 he made a trip to 
the gold fields of California by way of the 
overland route, in company with Mr. Pitzer 
and Captain Swingley, of Brodie's Grove. 
He met with fair success on the Pacific 
slope and returned to Illinois in 1852 by 
way of the Isthmus of Panama and settled 
down to farming again. In politics he was 
a pronouneed Democrat, and being one of 
the most prominent and infiuential men of 
the community, he was often called to pub- 
lic office, serving as school director fifteen 
years, school trustee three years, and direct- 
or of the Ogle County Agricultural Society 
from 1853 until i860. He also served as 
president of that organization for a time. 
He departed this life March 18, 1884. 

Henry L. Thomas, of this review, was 
only two years old when brought by his 
parents to Ogle county, and he was reared 
about two miles south of his present home, 
his early education being acquired in a little 
log school-house a half mile from his boy- 
hood home. He continued to assist his 
father in the operation of the home farm 
until his marriage, which was celebrated 
December 20, 1866, Miss Mary Ellen 
Felker becoming his wife. He then rented a 
farm of one hundred and thirty acres in 



Pine Creek township, on which he lived for 
three years, and for the same length of 
time rented his present farm, which then 
belonged to George \V. Phelps. The fol- 
lowing two years were spent on a farm of 
two hundred acres in Mt. Morris township, 
and at the end of that time he purchased 
one hundred and sixty acres of his present 
farm. Before moving to this place, how- 
ever, he rented the A. F. Weaver farm, of 
eighty acres, for one year, and then located 
upon his own farm, to which he has added 
a tract of forty acres, making a valuable 
farm of two hundred acres, which he has 
placed under excellent cultivation and im- 
proved with good and substantial buildings. 
He is interested in stock raising to some 
extent. 

Mrs. Thomas is a daughter of Abraham 
and Catherine Felker, the former born in 
Washington county, Maryland, July 6, 
1802, the latter in Franklin county, Penn- 
sylvania, April 24, 181 1. Her grandfather 
was a tanner, but her father followed farm- 
ing in the east, and on coming to Illinois in 
1855, settled in the town of Mt. Morris, 
where he spent three years and then moved 
to a farm in Ogle county, which he had 
previously purchased. Mrs. Thomas' edu- 
cation was begun in the schools of Mary- 
land, and after coming to this state attend- 
ed the public schools and academy at Mt. 
Morris. Nine children have been born to 
our subject and his wife, namely: Lillie 
May, born ]anuary 15, 1868, died January 
6, 1876; Edgar Felker, born July 29, 1869, 
is a dentist by profession and is now at 
home. While serving as a member of the 
committee on the Fourth of July celebra- 
tion, he had his finger inujred liy a skyrocket 
and had to have it amputated; b'lorence 
Edna, born April 11, 1871, is the wife of 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Charles Zoller, manager of the Union Tea 
Company at Omaha, Nebraska; Noble Fill- 
more, born December 12, 1872, married 
Susan Young, by whom he has a little son, 
and they live in Mt. Morris township, where 
he is engaged in farming; Ada Ellen, born 
December 19, 1875, died in infancy; Charles 
Henry, born April 3, 1S77; Freddie Hen- 
derson, born December 15, 1879, and 
Catherine, born March 26, 1882, are all at 
home; Nellie Maude, born February 19, 
1885, is attending the district school. 

Mr. Thomas has always affiliated with 
the Democratic party, and is to-day a strong 
advocate of the free coinage of silver. He 
has served as school director for nine years, 
and is at present school trustee. His wife 
and three daughters are members of the 
Lutheran church and he gives to its sup- 
port. He is widely and favorably known 
throughout the community in which he has 
so long made his home, and he has a host 
of warm friends. 



HON. CHARLES SCHNEIDER, mayor 
of Oregon, and cashier of the First 
National Bank, of that city, is a native of 
the city, and was born October 19, 1843, 
and is the son of John M. and Rebecca 
(Etnyre) Schneider, the former a native of 
Bavaria, and the latter of Washington 
county, Maryland. John M. Schneider was 
born June 8, 1808, and in his native country 
grew to manhood. He came to the United 
States in 1834, locating first in Baltimore, 
Maryland, where he remained for a time, 
removing from there to St. Louis, and later 
to Galena, Illinois. In 1836 he settled in 
Oregon, which at that time contained two 
log houses. He was a tailor by trade, but 
at Oregon opened first a grocery store and 



engaged in the grocery business, later estab- 
lishing a clothing store and continued in the 
clothing business up to the time of his death, 
which occurred September 30, 1893. He 
was a successful business man and accumu- 
lated a good estate. In politics he was a 
Democrat, and religiously a Catholic. His 
wife, who was born at Smithsburg, Wash- 
ington county, Maryland, August 20, 1808, 
was the eldest child of John and Catherine 
Etnyre, and came with her parents to Ogle 
county in 1839. In religious belief she was 
a Lutheran. She died in the spring of 1895. 
They were the parents of three children, 
Charles, Mary and Ellen. Both daughters 
died in young womanhood. 

Charles Schneider was reared in Oregon, 
and after obtaining his primary education in 
the public schools, entered the University of 
Notre Dame, at South Bend, Indiana, where 
he completed his course. After leaving that 
institution he returned to Oregon and clerked 
for a time in a store, and in 1870 entered 
the banking house of Bayard & Company, 
as bookkeeper. One year later this bank 
was converted into the First National Bank 
of Oregon, Illinois, and in iS74Mr. Schnei- 
der was elected cashier, which position he 
has since held. He was a little later elected 
one of the directors of the bank, and is still 
serving as such. The bank was chartered in 
1 87 1 with a capital of fifty thousand dollars. 
The present officers are George A. Mix, pres- 
ident; J. L. Rice, vice-president; and 
Charles Schneider, cashier. In addition to 
those named the directors are William H. 
Guilford and John Matmiller. 

Mr. Schneider was married September 
14, 1 87 1, to Miss Fannie Weller, a native 
of Martinsburg, Virginia, and daughter of 
Daniel and Mary (Timmons) Weller. At 
an early day her parents located in Pine 



92 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Creek township, Ogle county, where she 
grew to womanhood. Her father was born 
in Baltimore, Maryland, December i, 1805, 
and died in Ogle county, December 26, 
1890. Her mother, who was a daughter of 
John Timmons, was born in Martinsburg, 
Virginia, and died November 11, 18S6. 
With the exception of her brother Charles, 
now living in Pine Creek township, Mrs. 
Schneider is the only one of her family now 
living. To Mr. and Mrs. Schneider eight 
children have been born — Frank B. , Charles 
j., William D., Leo, Mary, Bert A., Ellen 
and George E., all of whom are living but 
Mary, who died in infancy. 

Mr. and Mrs. Schneider are members of 
the Catholic church. In politics he is a 
Republican. In 1885 he was elected alder- 
man and was re-elected three times. In 
1893 he was elected mayor of the city, re- 
elected in 1895, ^^'^ again in 1897, and is 
yet serving in that office. No other mayor 
ever served such a length of time. He is a 
public-spirited citizen, and believes in push- 
ing things, desiring his city to take a posi- 
tion which it is entitled by its natural ad- 
vantages. He is keenly alive to the de- 
mands of the age, and under his administra- 
tion the city of his birth will not suffer in 
comparison with others. He is treasurer of 
the Rock River Electric railroad, a new 
enterprise of which he is one of the pro- 
moters. 



JOSIAH A. HAYS, a well-to-do farmer 
of Buffalo township, resides on a well 
improved farm on section 1 1, lying near the 
city of Polo. He has been a resident of 
the county since the spring of 1854, com- 
ing here from Washington county, Mary- 
land, where he was born March 17, 1843. 



He is a son of Henry Hays, a native of the 
same county and state, who was born in 
1808, and who grew to manhood in his na- 
tive county and married Miss Sarah Eakle, 
who was likewise a native of Washington 
county. The good reports from Ogle coun- 
ty, sent by friends who had settled here, 
made him determine to follow their exam- 
ple, and accordingly, in the spring of 1854, 
accompanied by his family, he came to the 
county and located in Pine Creek township, 
where he purchased one hundred and sixty- 
three acres of choice land and engaged in 
farming, an occupation in which he was en- 
gaged in his native state. On that farm he 
resided a number of years, and then moved 
to Polo, and there spent the last years of 
his life, dying there in 1889, his death being 
the result of an accident, having been run 
over by a railroad train. 

The boyhood of our subject was spent in 
his native state, and in the common schools 
he commenced to obtain an education. He 
was but eleven years old when he accom- 
panied his parents to Ogle county. He is 
one of a family of eight children, all living 
but one. On his arrival in Ogle county he 
assisted his father in the cultivation of the 
home farm, and usually in the winter 
months attended the public schools. He 
remained with his parents until after he 
attained his majority, and was of great as- 
sistance to them in developing the farm. In 
March, 1S65, he enlisted under the last call 
of the president for men to fill up the 
depleted regiments. He became a member 
of Company F, Eighteenth Illinois Volun- 
teer Infantry, joining his regiment at Little 
Rock, Arkansas. While the war was soon 
afterwards ended, his regiment was retained 
in the service, doing guard duty through 
Arkansas, until in December, 1865, when it 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



93 



\yas mustered out of service at Pine Bluff, 
Arkansas, the men receiving their discharge 
at Springfield, Illinois. 

On receiving his discharge Mr. Hays re- 
turned to his old home and again engaged 
in agricultural pursuits. On the jSth of 
December, 1866, he was united in marriage, 
at Freeport, Illinois, with Miss Louisa Ann 
Martha Fo.x, a native of Albany, New York, 
and daughter of John Fo.x, an Englishman, 
who later came to Illinois and settled in 
Macoupin county, where Mrs. Hays was 
reared, and where he died in 1S56. His 
widow later married John Greenfield, and 
now resides in Grundy Center, Iowa. She 
is also English born, and is now about 
eighty-four years old. Mrs. Hays is one of 
a family of three children, and the sole sur- 
vivor. One brother, John A. T., was a 
soldier in the Southern army, while the 
other, F. B., was a soldier in the Union 
army, and died while in the service of his 
country. 

The spring after his marriage Mr. Hays 
moved to Harden county, Iowa, where he 
purchased eighty acres of land and opened 
up a farm. He remained on that farm two 
years, then sold out and rented for two 
years, then moved to Grundy county, in the 
state, and purchased one hundred and sixty 
acres and commenced the development of a 
new farm. After remaining there ten years 
and putting the farm under a high state of 
cultivation, he sold out, and in 1883 returned 
to Ogle county and purchased the farm 
where he now resides, on which he has made 
some permanent and valuable improvements, 
including the remodeling of the house. 

Mr. and Mrs. Hays have two daughters. 

Martha Ellen is now the wife of James 

Woolsey, and they have three children — 

Frank E., Eugene Hays and Murial May. 
10 



They reside on a farm in Buffalo township. 
Fanny Belle is the wife of William Dew, of 
Buffalo township, and they have four chil- 
dren — Perry W., Elmer, Mary Lavina and 
Josie Louise. 

Politically Mr. Hays has been a Repub- 
lican since attaining his majority. His first 
presidential ballot was for^braham Lincoln 
in 1863, a time when the votes of every true 
unionist counted for something. He has 
never cared for office, but while residing in 
Iowa he served as justice of the peace, 
township treasurer and secretary of the 
school board. He is a member of the Method- 
ist Episcopal church at Polo, of which body 
his wife is also a member. In whatever 
concerns the church they take an active in- 
terest, having at heart a love for the cause. 
Although absent from the county for some 
years he never lost interest in his old home, 
and is happy to be again numbered among 
its representative citizens. 



CORNELIUS BOWMAN is the posses- 
sor of a handsome property which now 
enables him to spend his declining years in 
the pleasurable enjoyment of his accumula- 
tions Until recently the record of his life 
was that of an active, enterprising, method- 
ical and sagacious business man and farmer, 
who bent his energies to the honorable ac- 
quirement of a comfortable competence for 
himself and family, but he is now living re- 
tired in the village of Harper. 

Mr. Bowman was born near Berlin, 
Somerset county, Pennsylvania, August 13, 
1 83 1, and is a son of John Bowman, who 
was born on the same farm in 1792. His 
paternal grandfather was a native of Ger- 
many and was one of the first settlers of 
Somerset count}-, where he opened up the 



94 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



farm on which both our subject and his 
father were born. The latter married EHza- 
beth Marteeny, who was born near Somer- 
set, Somerset county, of English ancestry. 
He spent his entire life upon the old home- 
stead engaged in agricultural pursuits, and 
there died in 1844 at the age of fifty-two 
years. His wife long survived him, dying 
in 1890 at the advanced age of eighty-four 
year. To them were born thirteen children, 
but only six reached }ears of maturity and 
four are now living, namely: Uriah, who 
owns and operates the old homestead; John 
J., a farmer of Somerset county; Chauncy, 
also a farmer of Somerset county, who 
served through the war of the Rebellion 
and was wounded at the battle of Gett}S- 
burg, and Cornelius, of this review. Cyrus, 
the oldest of the family, was a farmer by 
occupation and spent his entire life in Som- 
erset county. Levina married Aaron Gei- 
ger and also died in that county. 

Upon the old homestead Cornelius Bow- 
man grew to manhood, and in the schools 
of the neighborhood obtained a limited ed- 
ucation, which has been greatly supple- 
mented by reading and study at home. 
During early life he successfully engaged in 
teaching for several terms. On the 27th 
of February, 1S52, he was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Theresa Hauger, also a 
native of Somerset county, Pennsylvania, 
and a daughter of Jacob Hauger, who was 
born there and belonged to an old family of 
the county. Of the twelve children born 
of this union three died in infancy and John 
died from an accident at the age of nine 
years. Those living are Harvey, who re- 
sides on the home farm in Ogle county, 
Illinois; Norman, who is married and en- 
gaged in business in Webster City, Iowa; 
Grant, at home; Rebecca, wife of Fred F. 



Nicodemus, of Forreston, Illinois; Mrs. 
Rosanna E. Costello, who is now keeping 
house for her brother Harvey; Agnes M., 
wife of Henry Fisher, who lives near For- 
reston; Mary, wife of Jacob Piper, a farmer 
of Forreston, and Verna, at home. 

During the first year of his married life 
Mr. Bowman operated a rented farm m 
Somerset county, Pennsylvania, and then 
in connection with his brother he bought a 
tract of land which they developed into a 
good farm and cultivated for thirteen years. 
In the meantime he served as school direct- 
or and township assessor. Coming west 
in 1S65 he first located in Lee county, Illi- 
nois, where he rented the Colonel Dement 
farm for one year, but at the end of that 
time he became a resident of Ogle county, 
where he has since made his home. He 
rented a farm in Forreston township for one 
year and then bought a tract of eighty acres, 
to the cultivation of which he devoted his 
time for several years. On selling that 
place he bought the old David Raisinger 
farm of two hundred acres in Forreston 
township, and located thereon. When the 
railroad was laid out across his land, he 
divided some of his property into town lots 
and started the village of Harper. He 
built a store room and embarked in mer- 
chandising at that place, leaving his sons to 
operate the farm, and continued to actively 
engage in business there for seventeen years. 
In the meantime he served as assistant post- 
master, and later as postmaster being con- 
nected with that office for si.xteen or 
seventeen years. Besides his village pro- 
perty and the 'farm already mentioned he 
owns a well improved and valuable farm 
in Carroll county, Illinois, comprising 
one hundred and sixty acres, and has 
four hundred and eighty acres of improved 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



95 



land in Cheyenne county, Nebraska. He 
was one of the organizers of the Forreston 
Fire Insurance Company, of which he has 
been a stockholder, director and secretary 
for seven years, and he has been actively 
identified with all enterprises which he be- 
lieved calculated to advance the interests of 
the community in which he lives and pro- 
mote general prosperity. 

Originally Mr. Bowman was a Whig in 
politics, casting his first vote for General 
Winfield Scott, and since the formation of 
the Republican party he has been one of its 
stanch supporters. He has taken quite an 
active and prominent part in local politics, 
and has filled a number of township offices, 
being commissioner of highways si.x years, 
school director for a number of years, and 
supervisor two terms, during which time he 
served on some important committees. He 
and his wife are among the original members 
of the Reformed church of Forreston, con- 
tribute liberally to its support and assisted 
in the erection of the house of worship. 
For the success he has achieved in life Mr. 
Bowman deserves great credit, for he started 
out in life with but little capital, and the 
prosperity that has come to him is due to 
his own industry, enterprise, perseverance 
and good management. He is to-day one 
of the substantial men of the county, as 
well as one of its honored and highly es- 
teemed citizens. 



JOHN J. LEBO is a wide-awake and 
energetic farmer of Forreston township 
who owns and operates a well-improved and 
valuable farm of one hundred and twenty 
acres conveniently situated within a mile of 
the village of Forreston. He is a native of 
Pennsylvania, born near Harrisburg, in 



Dauphin county, September i8, 1847, and 
is a son of Phillip Lebo, a native of the 
same county. The grandfather, John Lebo, 
who was born of French parentage, was a 
pioneer of Dauphin county, where he open- 
ed up a farm and reared his family. On 
reaching man's estate Philip Lebo married 
Miss Barbara Meyers, also a native of 
Dauphin county and a daughter of Jacob 
Mej'ers, who was a represntative of one of 
its honored pioneer families. Mr. Lebo owned 
and operated a fine farm of one hundred 
and fifty acres near Elizabethville, Penn- 
sylvania, was one of the prominent and in- 
ffuential citizens of his county, and was 
called upon to serve in a number of local 
of^ces of honor and trust. In the county 
of his nativity he died in April, 1886, at 
about the age of eighty-four, having sur- 
vived his wife for some years. 

In the family of this worthy couple were 
twelve children, of whom ten reached years 
of maturity, namely: Philip, a prominent 
business man, who is now engaged in the 
manufacture of lumber in the state of 
Washington; John J., our subject; Eliza A., 
twin sister of John J., and the wife of C. S. 
Hartman, of Dauphin county, Pennsylvania; 
Mrs. Sarah M. Herner, a widow residing in 
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; Aaron S., who is 
married and engaged in blacksmithing in 
the state of \\'ashington; William, who 
married but is now deceased; Mrs. Ann 
Reams, a widow living in Harrisburg; Re- 
becca J., wife of John Mayer, of Washing- 
ton; Mary D., wife of John D. Hartman, of 
Dauphin county, Pennsylvania; and Eman- 
uel N., a contractor and builder of Harris- 
burg. 

John J. Lebo passed his boyhood and 
youth in Dauphin county, Pennsylvania and 
received a good common-school education, 



96 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



which has been greatly supplemented by 
reading and observation in later years. He 
remained under the parental roof until reach- 
ing man's estate and in Dauphin county was 
married, June 2, 1870, to Miss Sarah Lark, 
who was also born, reared and educated in 
that county, and is a daughter of Daniel 
and Susan Lark, natives of Pennsylvania. 
Two children have been born of their union, 
namely: Cora E. , now the wife of Rev. D. 
N. Frantz, a minister of the Reformed 
church now located at Stonington, Illinois; 
and Harry E., who is attending school in 
Dixon. 

For several years after his marriage Mr. 
Lebo operated rented land in his native 
county, but in 1877 he came west, joining 
old Pennsylvania friends in Ogle county, 
Illinois. After renting for about four years 
he bought eighty acres in Forreston town- 
ship on which he now resides, and erected 
thereon a good house and substantial out- 
buildings, but in 1890 his residence was 
destroyed bj? fire, together with a large part 
of the household goods. Later in the sea- 
son he built his present comfortable home 
and barn, and now has one of the best 
improved farms of the locality. To the 
original purchase he added a forty-acre tract 
adjoining and now has one hundred and 
twenty acres, which he has placed under ex- 
cellent cultivation. In connection with 
general farming he is also interested in stock 
raising and has upon his place a good grade 
of horses, cattle and hogs. 

Politically Mr. Lebo is a lifelong Re- 
publican, having cast his first presidential 
vote for U. S. Grant in the fall of 1868, and 
as a delegate to the county conventions of 
his party he has done much to advance its 
interest in this section of the state. b'or 
eighteen years he has been a member of the 



school board and secretary of the district for 
about the same length of time, but has never 
sought nor desired office, preferring to give 
his undivided attention to his business in- 
terests. Socially he is a member of the 
Knights of the Globe and the Mystic Order, 
and religiously both he and his wife are 
members of the English Lutheran church. 
They are widely and favorably known and 
their friends are many in Ogle county. 



WILLIAM C. DIEFFENBAUGH.-- 
Among the successful and enterpris- 
ing farmers of Ogle count}', who have ac- 
cumulated a competency through their 
own exertions and economy, and who thor- 
oughly understand their chosen calling, is 
the subject of this biographical notice, who 
resides in section 14, Forreston township. 
He was born in Montour count}', Pennsyl- 
vania, February 6, 1840, a son of Conrad 
Dieffenbaugh, a native of Columbia county, 
Pennsylvania, where he grew to manhood 
and married Catherine Stannn, also a native 
of the Keystone state. The father, who 
was a farmer by occupation, spent his en- 
tire life in Pennsylvania, dying there in 
18S2. In the family were the following 
children; Benjamin, a farmer of Pennsyl- 
vania; William C. , our subject; David E., a 
resident of Sandusky county, Ohio; Frank- 
lin, a resident of Wood county, Ohio; 
Charles, who lives in Kansas, twenty-five 
miles west of\\'ichita; Mrs. Mary Ellen 
Brown, a widow residing in Cheney, Kan- 
sas; and Sarah Ann, who died at the age of 
ten years. 

During his boyhood and youth William 
C. Dieffenbaugh received a good common- 
school education and was reared on the 
houu; farm, remaining with his father until 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



97 



he attained his majority, and assisting him 
in carrying on the place. He continued to 
work for his father for one year and then 
went to Columbia county, Pennsylvania, 
where for two years he was engaged in rais- 
ing broom corn during the summer and 
manufacturing it into brooms during the 
winter months at Bloomsburg. In the 
spring of 1864, he came to Ogle county, 
Illinois, but after working on a farm in For- 
reston township for one summer, he went 
to Carroll county, where he remained for 
four years. 

Returning to Ogle county, Mr. Dieffen- 
baugh married Miss Anna Heitman, a 
native of Maryland, who died here in 1S71, 
and of the two children born of that union 
one died in infancy and the other at the age 
of thirteen months. He was again married 
in Ogle county, September 25, i 873, his sec- 
ond union being with Miss Margaret Timmer, 
a native of the county, who was reared amidst 
scenes incident to pioneer life. As a child 
she remembers seeing deer approach the 
house in search of food, and the wolves 
often made the night hideous by their howls. 
Her father, Frederick Timmer, was a native 
of Germany, but was reared in Maryland, 
where he married Miss Margaret Jane Fry, 
who was born in that state, but whose 
father was an Englishman, her mother a 
German. Mr. and Mrs. Timmer were hon- 
ored pioneers of Ogle county, and here 
reared their family of ten children, all of 
whom reached man and womanhood, and 
with but one exception all are still living. 
They are as follows: John F., a farmer of 
Forreston township; Elias A., a farmer of 
Mar3'land township; Margaret, wife of our 
subject; 'Mary Ellen, deceased; Sophia, 
wife of John Rebman, a farmer of Ogle 
county; Helen E., wife of Chris Zumdahl, 



of Ogle county; Henry, a resident of For- 
reston; Frank, who owns and operates the 
old home farm; Emma, a resident of For- 
reston; and Charles, a farmer of this 
county. Mr. and Mrs. Dieffenbaugh have a 
family of seven children, namely: Anna, 
who was educated in the schools of the 
home district of Forreston, and is now the 
wife of Harry Acker, a farmer of Brook- 
ville, IIHnois; John and Jesse, who assist 
their father in the operation of the home farm ; 
Frances Luella, at home; Benjamin C, a 
student of the Forreston high school; 
Harvey F. , at home; Walter F., who died 
at the age of fifteen months; and Emma 
May, who is attending the home school. 

For a number of years after his mar- 
riage, Mr. Dieffenbaugh rented land and 
engaged in farming and raising broom corn 
during the summer, while through the win- 
ter he continued to engage in the manufac- 
ture of brooms. In 1884 he purchased his 
present farm of one hundred and sixty acres 
on section 14, Forreston township, and the 
following year located thereon, since which 
time he has devoted his energies to general 
farming and stock raising with most grati- 
fying results. He has remodeled the house 
and made other improvements upon the 
place which add to its value and attractive 
appearance. 

Politically Mr. Dieffenbaugh is identi- 
fied with the Democratic party, but aside 
from voting has never taken a very active 
part in political affairs. He is a warm 
friend of our public school s\stem, and is 
now most capably and satisfactorily serving 
his fourteenth year as president of the dis- 
trict school board. Religiously both he and 
his wife are earnest and faithful members 
of the Zion Reformed church at Forreston. 
His sterling integrity, inflexible honesty, 



98 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and general high principles, have won him 
the respect of every community in which he 
has resided, and he is to-day one of the 
most esteemed and valued citizens of his 
portion of the county. 



J 



OHN REYNOLDS, one of the leading 
and representative farmers and stock 
raisers of Woosung township, and who re- 
sides on his fine farm on section 9, was born 
June 24, 1844, in county Roscommon, Ire- 
land, and is the son of Thomas and Mary 
(Graham) Reynolds, both natives of the 
same county in Ireland. 

In 1849 Thomas Reynolds came to the 
United States, taking passage in a slow sail- 
ing vessel, and landing in New York. He 
remained in that city but a very short time, 
going from there into Pennsylvania, where 
he secured work on a railroad. He remained 
in Pennsylvania about two years, and then 
went to Dayton, Ohio. He had now ac- 
cumulated sufficient funds to send for his 
family, which he accordingly did, and in 
due time they joined him at Dayton. After 
remaining in that city until 1865, he con- 
cluded to come to Illinois. Locating in 
Woosung township. Ogle county, he pur- 
chased a farm and engaged in agricultural 
pursuits. Industrious as the day was long, 
he made a success in life, becoming a thor- 
ough and practical farmer. He continued 
farming until within a few years of his death, 
when he retired from active life and lived 
retired, still, however, remaining on his 
farm. His death occurred December 16, 
i89r, at the age of ninety years. He was 
a fine type of the Irish gentleman, and was 
a hale and hearty old man, retaining his 
mental faculties until the last. His good 
wife died February 15, 1881. They were 



the parents of five children, of whom our 
subject is the oldest. Winifred, who is the 
wife of John Donavan, is living in Dayton, 
Ohio. Martin, who was in the Fourth Ohio 
Cavalry and served through the entire Civil 
war, is now making his home with our sub- 
ject. Patrick, who married Bridget Dalton, 
is living on the old home place in Woosung 
township. Mary died in infancy. In poli- 
tics Thomas Reynolds was a Democrat, and 
religiously was a Roman Catholic. 

The subject of this sketch spent his boy- 
hood and youth in Dayton, Ohio, and in the 
public schools of that city received his edu- 
cation. At the age of fifteen, he quit school 
and commenced working in a furniture fac- 
tory. He remained in that employment 
but a short time and then ran a stationary 
engine in a foundry for several years. In 
1S65, he came to Ogle county, joining his 
father, who had come about one month pre- 
viously. On his arrival he took the man- 
agement of his father's farm, although he 
had no previous experience in farming. His 
success has been wonderful in this respect, 
as it is not often that one takes up the life 
of a farmer after having spent years in other 
employment and makes of farming a suc- 
cess. 

Mr. Reynolds continued to manage his 
father's farm until his marriage, November 
28, 1882, to Miss Mary Doyle, who was 
born August 29, 1857, in Livingston county, 
New York, and daughter of Darby and 
Mary (Dalton) Doyle, her father being a 
farmer by occupation. Both parents were 
natives of Tipperary county, Ireland. They 
left their native land in 1852, and crossing 
the Atlantic, made their way to Livingston 
county. New York, where they were mar- 
ried, and resided about five years. From 
that county they moved to Lexington, Ken- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



99 



tucky, where they remained four years, 
coming from there to Ogle county and 
locating on a farm on section 12, Woosung 
township, where the family has since con- 
tinued to reside. Mr. and Mrs. Doyle had 
a family of six children: Mary, wife of our 
subject; James, living in Le.xington, Ken- 
tucky; Catherine, deceased; Lizzie, wife of 
William Callahan, who is living on the farm 
of Mr. Doyle; two daughters, who died in 
infancy. Mrs. Dojle died September 23, 
1897. ^^r. Doyle is yet living on the old 
homestead. Religiously he is a Roman 
Catholic, and politically a Democrat. 

Four children have come to bless the 
union of Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds. Mary 
Winifred, born March 17, 1885, is now at- 
tending school at St. Clara Academy, Sin- 
sinawa, Wisconsin; Catherine Frances, born 
February 15, 1888; James Martin, born 
July 4, 1889, and Elizabeth Lauretta, born 
February 21, 1893, are attending the dis- 
trict school. 

After his marriage, Mr. Reynolds moved 
to his present farm, which he had previously 
purchased and which comprises two hun- 
dred acres of excellent land. The farm has 
been placed under a high state of cultiva- 
tion, and everything about the place denotes 
the master mind of its owner. He raises 
Durham short-horn cattle, Poland-China 
hogs and Morgan horses. Each year he 
markets about one hundred head of hogs. 
Commencing life with bat little else than a 
stout heart and willing hands, he has been 
quite successful in life, and has no reason 
to regret making Ogle county his permanent 
home. 

In politics Mr. Reynolds is a Democrat, 
but in local affairs he votes for the man and 
not party. For thirteen years he has served 
as school director, and for five years was 



road commissioner. He was also a member 
of the board of supervisors for four years, 
during' which time he was on several im- 
portant committees, including the commit- 
tee on education and the building com- 
mittee. A public spirited man, he has the 
confidence of his friends and neighbors in 
a remarkable degree. Religiously he is 
connected with the Catholic church, of 
which his wife is also a devoted member. 



JOHNSON LAWRENCE, a well-known 
and prominent farmer residing on sec- 
tion I, Eagle Point township, is a represent- 
ative of one of the old and honored pioneer 
families of Ogle county — one who has borne 
its part in her development and prosperity 
for over sixty years. He was born on the 
old homestead where he still resides, June 
17,1844, and is a son of John Lawrence, 
whose birth occurred in Kent county, Eng- 
land, in I So I. Leaving home in 18 17, he 
crossed the broad Atlantic and after spend- 
ing one year in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 
went to Ontario, Canada, locating north of 
Toronto, where he engaged in farming. 
There he married Miss Lydia Johnson, a 
native of that country, where they continued 
to make their home until 1838, which year 
witnessed their arrival in Ogle county, being 
among its first settlers. In Eagle Point 
township the father bought a claim of one 
hundred and eighty-three acres, of which 
only a few acres had been broken and a log 
cabin erected thereon. To the further im- 
provement and cultivation of the place he at 
once turned his attention, and when the land 
came into market he entered it from the 
government. He was one of the represent- 
ative and most active farmers in the coun- 
ty and from the raw land soon developed a 



lOO 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



fine farm. He met with a well-deserved 
success in his operations and by an upright, 
honorable life commanded the respect and 
esteem of all who knew him. He was one 
of the original members of the Methodist 
Episcopal church of Buffalon Grove, gave 
liberally of his means to its support, and al- 
ways took an active and prominent part in 
church work. He died on October 31, 
1886, and his estimable wife passed away in 
November, 1888, the remains of both being 
interred in the Polo cemetery, where a sub- 
stantial monument marks their last resting 
place. 

Johnson Lawrence, of this review, is the 
youngest in a family of seven children, two 
sons and five daughters, namely: Nancy, 
who married Philetus Peck and settled in 
Nebraska, where she died in 1867; Susana, 
who married Albert Slater and resides in Jef- 
ferson, Marion county, Oregon; Mary, wife 
of J. C. Williams, of Denver, Colorado ;Jor- 
dan who is now living retired in Polo;Cath- 
erine, who married Moses Culver and died 
in Nebraska; Maria, wife of Isaac Appleford, 
of Di.xon, Illinois; and Johnson. 

Our subject was reared in much the 
usual manner of a farmer of his day, and 
his early education, acquired in the com- 
mon schools near his boyhood home, was 
supplemented by a year's course in Mt. 
Morris College, then known as the Rock 
River Seminary. On the 4th of September, 
1862, he enlisted as a private in Company 
D, Ninety-second Illinois Volunteer Infan- 
try, which was assigned to the Army of the 
Cumberland, and with which he participated 
in the battles of Franklin and Tryune, Ten- 
nessee. In August, 1S63, he was trans- 
ferred to the mounted infantry, and later 
took part in the engagements at Hoover's 
Gap, Shelbyville and a series of skirmishes. 



With his regiment he was the first at Look- 
out Mountain and Chattanooga, and be- 
sides taking an active part in the battles 
there, he also bore his part in the en- 
gagements at Chickamauga and Ringgold, 
Georgia, and in the Atlanta campaign, where 
the regiment was almost constantly under 
fire. During this time he was changed 
from Wilder's brigade to Kilkpatrick's cav- 
alry division, with which he remained until 
the close of the war. He was with Sher- 
man on his memorable march to the sea, 
and later took part in the battles of Ben- 
tonville, Waynesborough, Georgia, and 
Aiken, South Carolina. The regiment was 
then left in the south and was finally mus- 
tered out at Concord, North Carolina, after 
which he went to Chicago, where he was 
discharged in July, 1865. On his return 
home he resumed his farming operations 
and continued to aid in the work on the old 
homestead until 1875, when he took com- 
plete charge of the same. He is a thor- 
ough and systematic farmer and has met 
with excellent success in his life-work. Be- 
sides the home farm, comprising one hun- 
dred and eighty-three acres, he also owns a 
farm of one hundred and sixty acres, three 
miles south of the former. For over twenty 
years he has been engaged in feeding and 
dealing in stock and annually' ships from 
three to five car loads of cattle and one or 
two car loads of hogs. He has also found 
this business quite profitable, and is to-day 
one of the most substantial and reliable 
citizens of his community. 

In Polo, April 8, 1S79, Mr. Lawrence 
married Miss Julia E. Read, a native of 
Ogle county and a daughter of George D. 
Read, an early settler of Ogle county from 
New York, who came here when a young 
man, in 1836, and served as postmaster of 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



lot 



Buffalo for a number of years. Here he 
wedded Mary Wamsley, also a native of 
New York. His death occurred in 188:2, 
and she passed away in 1884. Mr. and 
Mrs. Lawrence have one daughter, Lillis, 
now a student in the home school. 

Politically Mr. Lawrence has been a 
lifelong Republican, casting his first presi- 
dential ballot for General U. S. Grant, in 
1868, and supporting every Republican can- 
didate for that office since then. He has 
taken quite an active and influential part in 
local politics, and has served five or si.\' 
years as assessor of Eagle Point township, 
and has been a delegate to a number of 
county and congressional conventions of his 
part}-. In 1S93 he was elected supervisor, 
and so acceptably did he fill that office that 
he has been continually reelected, being the 
present incumbent. In 1S98 he was elect- 
ed chairman of the county board and is now 
filling that position with credit to himself 
and to the entire satisfaction of his constitu- 
ents. In whatever position he has been 
called upon to serve he has discharged the 
duties in a most efficient and creditable 
manner. He is an honored member of the 
Grand Army of the Republic, and his wife 
is a member of the Independent Presb}'- 
terian church of Polo. They stand high in 
the communit}' where they have so long 
made their home and those who know them 
best are numbered among their warmest 
friends. 



JOHN S. ROSIER is a well-known con- 
tractor and builder of Byron, of whose 
skill many notable examples are to be seen 
in Ogle county. Thoroughly reliable in all 
things, the quality of his work is a convinc- 
ing test of his own personal worth and the 
11 



same admirable trait is shown in his consci- 
entious discharge of the duties of different 
positions of trust and responsibility to which 
he has been chosen. 

Mr. Rosier was born in Perry county, 
Pennsylvania, June 29, 1830. His ances- 
tors originally made their home in Wurtem- 
burg, Germany, but during the seventeenth 
century they were driven out by the French 
and sought a home on this side of the Atlan- 
tic, becoming pioneers of Berks county, 
Pennsylvania. The great-grandfather of our 
subject, Jonathan Rosier, removed from 
that count}' to what is now Perry county 
and there reared his family, including George 
Rosier, our subject's grandfather, who was 
born in Berks county. The father, John 
Rosier, spent his entire life in Perry county, 
was a prosperous farmer and a highly re- 
spected citizen of his community. He mar- 
ried Maria Rice, a native of Juniata county, 
Pennsylvania, and a daughter of Henry and 
Margaret (Thomas) Rice. Her father was 
one of a family of twenty-one children, 
twelve sons and nine daughters, whose par- 
ents, Zachariah Rice and wife, lived to ad- 
vanced ages. The Rice family is also of 
German descent and was founded near 
Bradywine, Pennsyhania, during the seven- 
teenth century. 

In the county of his nativity John S. 
Rosier spent his boyhood and youth, attend- 
ing the common schools to a limited e.xtent, 
but he is mostly self-educated since reach- 
ing man's estate. There he also learned 
the carpenter's and joiner's trade, which he 
followed in Pittsburg in 1851. Coming to 
Illinois in 1852, he worked at his trade in 
Rockford for one year, and in the spring of 
1853 came to Byron, where he has since 
carried on operations as a contractor and 
builder with marked success. 



102 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



In January, 1854, Mr. Kosier was united 
in marriage with Miss Rebecca N. Bull, a 
daughter of John Bull, one of the pioneers 
of the county, and they began their domes- 
tic life in the village of Byron, where he 
purchased an unfinished residence the fol- 
lowing year. That place continued to be his 
home until 1890, when it, with its entire con- 
tents, was destroyed by fire. Subsequently 
he erected his present residence, which is 
heated by a furnace and supplied with all 
modern conveniences, being one of the best 
in the village. He is now one of the oldest 
contractors in the state, having carried on 
operations in Ogle county for forty-five 
years and on all sides are seen many evi- 
dences of his skill and handiwork. He has 
not only erected most of the buildings in 
Byron, but has also built many houses and 
barns throughout the surrounding country. 
Mr. Kosier's first wife died in October, 
1858, leaving two children: Frances M., 
now deceased, was a well-educated lady, 
who was one of the successful and popular 
teachers of Ogle county; and Charles B., a 
carpenter and joiner, is married and resides 
in Byron. Mr. Kosier was again married, 
December 27, 1859, his second union being 
with Miss Elizabeth Titus, of Rockford,who 
was a native of New York, but when a child 
went to Michigan and later came to Illinois. 
Her father, Jarvis Titus, was an early set- 
tler of Winnebago county, this state, where 
Mrs. Kosier was principally reared and edu- 
cated. By the second marriage there are 
four children: Lucy Adella, wife of C. C. 
Kennedy, of Hinckley, Illinois; Rebecca 
E., wife of Captain H. C. Newcomer, of 
the engineering corps of the United States 
army, who is now located at Memphis, 
Tennessee, and has charge of the levees on 
the Mississippi and Arkansas rivers; Belle 



L. , a well-eduCated young lady now en- 
gaged in teaching; and Albert, who is a 
first-class carpenter and is now with his 
father. 

In his political affiliations, Mr. Kosier 
was first an old-line Whig, but in 1856 
joined the Republican party, and has since 
been one of its stanch supporters. He takes 
an active part in local politics and cam- 
paign work, and as alternate delegate to 
the national convention of 1880, he assisted 
in the nomination of James A. Garfield for 
the presidency. For nearly forty years he 
has served continuously as a delegate to the 
county and congressional conventions of his 
party and has done some very effective 
work in promoting its interests. He. has 
never sought office, but has served as village 
trustee, commissioner of highways and 
member of the school board, in a most 
capable and satisfactory manner. In 1858 
he became identified with the Masonic fra- 
ternity and to-day is one of the most prom- 
inent members of Byron Lodge, No. 274, 
F. & A. M., of which he has been master 
twenty-two years and uninterruptedly for 
eighteen years, while for the same length 
of time he has represented the lodge in the 
Grand Lodge. He also belongs to Winne- 
bago Chapter, No. 24, R. A. M., at Rock- 
ford. For forty-five years he has been a 
resident of Ogle county, has taken an active 
interest in its growth and development, and 
is to-day an honored member of the Old 
Settler Association, serving as its president. 
He has attended its meetings and taken 
part in its proceedings for many years, and 
in 1897 made a speech in reply to the ad- 
dress of welcome. He is one of the best 
known men in the county, and it is safe to 
say that none are held in higher regard or 
have more friends than John S. Kosier. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



103 



ADAM BUTTELL, the founder of the 
Buttell Piano Manufacturing Company, 
Oregon, Illinois, was born in New York 
city, April 21, 1855, and is the son of 
Philip and Margaret (Lieb) Butteli, the 
former a native of Alsace, France, but who 
in early life removed to Bavaria, and later 
to the United States, locating in New York 
city. He was a cabinet and piano maker 
by trade, and was an expert in that line. 
His death occurred in New York city some 
years ago. In politics he was a Republican, 
and religiously a Catholic. His wife was 
also a member of the Catholic church. 
They were the parents of four children: 
Adam, the subject of this sketch; George, 
residing in New York city, where he is en- 
gaged in the grocery trade; John, also of 
New York, engaged in general merchandis- 
ing; and Margaret, living in New York. 

The subject of this sketch was reared in 
New York city, where his education was 
obtained. He began when of sufficient age 
to learn the trade of piano making, work- 
ing with his father, who, as already stated, 
was an expert in that line, understanding 
the manufacture of pianos in all its branches. 
He there perfected his knowledge of the 
trade, and later was employed in the best 
establishments of the east. In April, 1889, 
he left for the west, locating at Des Moines, 
Iowa, where he started a factory for him- 
self, under the name of Adam Buttell Piano 
Company, which was later changed to 
Adam Buttell & Sons. The excellence of 
this- piano, and the purity of its tone, soon 
commanded attention, and it was not long 
before the Buttell piano was placed in the 
best homes in Des Moines, and was the de- 
light of the lovers of good music. He was 
able to compete with the oldest piano 
factories in the country in placing his instru- 



ments. In 1895, he removed his factory to 
Oregon, under the auspices of the National 
Piano Company, of which company he took 
the superintendency. This move was made 
to get a good water power and to be near 
the great centers of trade. This arrange- 
ment lasted until June i, 1897, when 
he resigned his position with the National 
Piano Company, and re-established the 
Adam Buttell & Sons Piano Company. 
The latter company has been increasing its 
trade, and has met with flattering success in 
the sale of its pianos. As in Des Moines, 
they are able to compete with the oldest 
piano makers, and have a bright future be- 
fore them. As with all new work, it takes 
time for the people to learn of its merits, 
but the Buttell piano has met with success 
far beyond the company's fondest hopes, 
which demonstrates beyond a doubt the ex- 
cellence of this instrument, its rich, pure 
tone, its durability, and also that people 
appreciate a perfect piano. They have been 
placed in Chicago, throughout the state of 
Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Nebraska, Wis- 
consin, Missouri, and other states. 

The Buttell piano is an upright, embrac- 
ing all the modern improvements, and is an 
artistic and beautiful piece of workmanship. 
From the special and superior construction 
of its sounding board, the tone enhances 
with age. The evenness of the scale holds 
it longer in tune than other pianos. All 
the material in these pianos is of the high- 
est grade and selected with great care, al- 
ways with the aim of producing the best 
and most harmonious effects in tone. An- 
other feature of this piano is that Mr. But- 
tell is ever present, and supervises in the 
minutest detail the putting together of every 
part of his instruments. This feature, with 
his long experience, is of the highest im-j 



I04 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



portance. Mr. Buttell sells direct to the 
people in this section of the country, and 
his son John looks after its sale in Des 
Moines, Iowa. 

Mr. Buttell was married in New York 
city, August 14, 1876, to Miss Anna Marie 
Geis, daughter of Jacob Geis. She is a 
native of Germany, born at Budeskeim on 
the Rhine. Her parents, who are both de- 
ceased, came to the United States in 1872, 
locating in New York, where they both died. 
By this union there were six children — John 
Jacob, George Joseph, Frank Adam, Cath- 
erine, Richard Arthur, and Harold Stanton. 
Of these, Catherine died in childhood, while 
the two oldest are in business with their 
father. In politics Mr. Buttell is a Repub- 
lican, and fraternally he is a member of 
Oregon Lodge, No. 420, A. F. & A. M., 
and of Des Moines Lodge, No. 18, A. O. 
U. W., of Des Moines, Iowa. 

It is very fortunate for the city of Ore- 
gon that the Buttell Piano Company has 
been located there. In addition to its just- 
ly acquired fame of being the most beauti- 
ful located town on the far-famed Rock 
river, it will have the distinction of being the 
home of one of the best piano manufactor- 
ies in this country. 



CHARLES P. CHEESEM.-\N, a leading 
and representative farmer of Eagle 
Point township, residing on section 34, was 
born near Toronto, Canada, July 17, 1837. 
His father, Alfred Cheeseman, was a native 
of England, born near London, in Kent 
county. May 8, 18 12, and there grew to 
manhood, learning the shoemaker's trade, 
which he followed for some \ears. In 
early manhood he married Miss Susan Law- 
rence, also a native of England and a daugh- 



ter of John Lawrence. In iS36they emi- 
grated to Canada and took up their resi- 
dence near Toronto, but three years later 
came to Ogle count}', Illinois. At Buffalo 
Grove, Mr. Cheeseman took up a claim, 
erected thereon a log house and began to 
break, fence and improve his little farm, 
but in the spring of 1842 he sold the place 
and removed to Chambers Grove, Carroll 
county, where he purchased Michael .dyers' 
claim to two hundred and forty acres. .A 
few acres had been broken and a log house 
built, in which the family lived while the fa- 
ther opened up his farm. In 1S57 he 
built a comfortable brick residence, a good 
barn, set out a fine orchard and made a 
fairly well improved farm of his place. 
There he spent his remaining years, dying 
December 26, 1894. His first wife, the 
mother of our subject, passed away Febru- 
ary 2, 1S54, and he subsequently married 
Miss Frances P. l>uck, who died' seven 
weeks previous to her husband's death. 

Our subject is the oldest of the children 
born of the tirst union; Robert D. is a 
farmer residing near Shannon, Illinois; Eliz- 
abeth A. is the wife of Christopher L. 
Shirk, of Richland Cit}-, Richland county, 
\\'isconsin; Mrs. Mary Saterly is a widow 
residing near Shannon, Illinois; Rachel is 
the wife of Charles Gross, of Sumnerville, 
Tennessee; Nancy Jane is the wife of ^^'ill- 
iam J. Griswold, of Milledgeville, Illinois; 
Rhoda died in infancy; lantha, deceased, 
was the wife of Jabez Todd, of Milledge- 
ville; Emma married Dr. Robert McPherso, 
of Carroll county, and died in California. 
There were four children by the second 
marriage, namely: George W., a resident 
of Daggett, Illinuis; fosephine, of Chicago; 
Samuel B. , (jf South Dakota; and Lafajette, 
of Chicago. 




C. p. CHEESEMAN. 



THl-: BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



107 



On the home farm in Carroll county 
Charles P. Cheeseman passed his boyhood 
and youth, attending the district schools a 
few months during the winter, and aiding 
in the farm work during the remainder of 
the year. He remained with his father un- 
til reaching man's estate and on leaving 
home went to Nodaway county, Missouri, 
where he worked for one year on a farm 
four miles south of Maryville. The follow- 
ing year was passed in Doniphan county, 
Kansas, where he engaged in farming and 
staging. In the spring of i860 he went to 
Denver and from there to the Rocky mount- 
ains, and engaged in freighting across the 
plains for a year. 

On the 14th of November, 1S61, Mr. 
Cheeseman manifested his patriotism and 
love of country by enlisting in Company H, 
Second Kansas Cavalry, under Captain Gun- 
ther and Colonel W. F. Cloud, the regiment 
being assigned to the Seventh Army Corps. 
He participated in numerous skirmishes, in- 
cluding those at Lone Jack, Missouri; Cane 
Hill, Arkansas; Prairie Grove and Coon 
Creek, Missouri. He had some ribs broken 
and sustained a rupture by being thrown 
from his horse and for a short time was con- 
fined in the hospital at Fort Scott. Later 
he was on duty with a scouting detachment 
made up of soldiers from the hospital and 
thus spent four months in Kansas and Mis- 
souri. After rejoining his regiment at 
Springfield, Missouri, he participated in the 
capture of Fort Smith, Arkansas, and on a 
scouting expedition took Dardanelles. He 
took part in the Shreveport campaign un- 
der Steele, and from there went to Hot 
Springs, participating in number of battles 
and skirmishes, including the battle of Prai- 
rie Deann, the taking of Fort Camden and 
the engagement of Poison Springs, where 



fourteen hundred Union men were engaged 
in battle with seven thousand rebels, and 
where the former lost their artillery and the 
latter lost about twenty-two hundred men 
in killed and wounded. After the battle of 
Jenks Ferry, Mr. Cheeseman was transferred 
to the ambulance corps and while taking 
wounded to Pine Bluff, Arkansas, was cap- 
tured, but was soon released. He then pro- 
ceeded with his charges to Little Rock, 
where he remained for six months, and later 
rejoined the command at Fort Sirnth, re- 
maining there until mustered out on the e.x- 
piration of his term of service, March 7, 
1S65, at Little Rock. 

Mr. Cheeseman then returned to his 
home in Elwood, Kansas, but a few weeks 
later came to the old homestead at Cham- 
bers Grove, Carroll county, Illinois, and for 
two years assisted his father in carrying on 
the farm. In that count}' he was married, 
December 25, 1S67, to Miss Hannah M. 
Hyzer, a native of Delaware county. New 
York, and a daughter of Peter and Eliza- 
beth (Hoyt) Hyzer, who settled in Carroll 
count}-, Illinois, in 1855, and there spent 
their remaining years. The father died in 
1891, the mother a few }ears previous. 
The children born to Mr. and Mrs. Cheese- 
man are as follows: Tina, who married 
David Buchanan, and died leaving one son, 
Robert Grant, who is now living with our 
subject; Harvey J., who carries on the home 
farm; Lenny, who died in infancy; Susie, 
wife of \'ernon Finkle, of Sanfordville, Illi- 
nois; James, Albert and May, all at home. 

After his marriage, Mr. Cheeseman lo- 
cated on a farm in Lee county, Illinois, 
where he operated rented land for three 
years, and then removed to Story county, 
Iowa, where he was engaged in agricultural 
pursuits for two years. On returning to 



io8 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



this state he purchased the farm of eighty 
acres in Eagle Point township, Ogle coun- 
ty, where he still resides, and to its im- 
provement and cultivation he has since de- 
voted his energies with marked success. He 
is a natural mechanic, very handy with 
tools, and has conducted a wagon and re- 
pair shop since locating here. He cast his 
first presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln, 
in 1864, and has since been a stanch sup- 
porter of the Republican party and its prin- 
ciples. Socially he is a charter member of 
George Crider Post, No. 575, G. A. R., of 
Milledgeville, and is one of the most highly 
respected and honored citizens of the com- 
munity in which he lives. 



REUBEN S. MARSHALL.— If one de- 
sires to gain a vivid realization of the 
rapid advance in civilization which the last 
few decades have brought about, he can lis- 
ten to the stories of the men who are still 
living among us, and by no means overbur- 
dened with years, can tell of their boy- 
hood. The log cabin home, the still ruder 
school-house with its rough seats made of 
slabs, its limited range of studies and its 
brief terms, arranged on the subscription 
plan, the routine of work at home, unre- 
lieved by any of the modern devices by 
which machinery is made to do in a short 
time what formerly occupied the entire 
year — these and many si miliar descriptions 
will bring up in sharp contrast the advan- 
tages of to-day. The subject of thissketch, 
a highly respected citizen of Mt. Morris 
township, residing on section 11, has many 
interesting reminiscences of this sort. 

Reuben S. Marshall was born in Clinton 
county, New York, October 4, 1827, and is 
the son of Caleb and Louisa (Sanburn) Mar- 



shall, both of whom were natives of Stowe, 
Vermont, the former born November 5, 
1778, and the latter July 15, 1798. Her 
father later served in the war of 18 12. 
Soon after their marriage Caleb Marshall 
and wife removed to Clinton county, New 
York, where all their children were born. 
They were numbered among the early set- 
tlers of that county, which was their home 
for many years. They were the parents of 
si.\ children, as follows: Caleb S., born 
January 21, 1819; Almira E., August 21, 
1820; Lucien, May 14, 1822; Phila, July 21, 
iS24;Mary K., September 23, iS25;and 
Reuben S., our subject. 

Caleb Marshall served in the same regi- 
ment, under Colonel Baker, in which was 
his father-in-law, Mr. Sanburn. By trade 
he was a dyer and puller, and in his day the 
cloth was all dyed and pulled by hand. He 
also learned the trade of a cooper, which he 
followed to some e.Ntent while yet residing 
in the east, but never after coming west. 

In November, 1834, the Marshall family 
started for Illinois, but on arriving at Cleve- 
land, Ohio, they heard alarming reports 
about the Indians and concluded to stop for 
a time until there should be no further 
trouble from hostile Indians. They re- 
mained in Ohio about two years. In Octo- 
ber, 1836, Caleb Marshall left his family in 
Cleveland and came to Ogle county, Illi- 
nois, and made claim to a half section of 
land in Mt. Morris township, the present 
home farm of our subject. Lake naviga- 
tion having suspended when he \Vas ready 
to return to Cleveland, he walked the entire 
distance back to that city. 

On the 22d of February, 1837, the fam- 
ily left Cleveland for their new home, com- 
ing by team arrising at Oregon, on the 19th 
of March, being about four weeks on the 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



109 



road. After remaining in Oregon about 
three weeks, they crossed the river, pro- 
ceeding to their claim, where a small log 
house, 12 X 14, was erected, into which the 
family moved. An addition was subsequent- 
ly built of about twelve feet, and that 
cabin was the family home for some years. 
For a time there was nothing but a dirt 
floor, but finally a floor of punchsons was 
laid. The roof was made of "shakes," 
held down by weight poles. It was a rude 
structure, but it was the abode of hospitaity. 
As soon as the frost was out of the ground 
some five acres were broken and their first 
crop planted, consisting of two acres of 
wheat, one acre of oats, an acre and a half 
of sod corn, and a half acre of potatoes. 

On arriving in Ogle county, Caleb Mar- 
shall found himself the possessor of sixteen 
dollars and a half, and a two-horse team; 
with that capital he had to provide for his 
family until he could so improve his farm 
as to make it productive. This was no 
easy thing to do in a new country where 
there was no markets nearer than Chicago, 
save Galena, which in many respects was 
not as good. Often has our subject gone 
to the former place with a load of wheat 
and without a cent to defray expenses. In 
those trips he was usually commissioned to 
buy something for neighbors. In Chicago 
payment was made in paper currency, but 
in Galena only gold and silver were used. 
It was difficult to carry out a neighbor's 
commission at the latter place when no one 
in this vicinity had gold or silver to pay. 
Taxes, however, had to be paid in gold or 
silver and it was fortunate that such a town 
as Galena was convenient. When one did 
not have produce to sell at that point, they 
would go to the lead mines at that place 
and work long enough to get sufficient gold 



or silver for taxes. The first trip our sub- 
ject made to Chicago with wheat was when 
he was fifteen years old, and it required 
seven days in going and coming with a team 
of horses. 

Caleb Marshall was twice married. By 
his first union there was one daughter that 
grew to womanhood, married and went still 
farther west. After a wedded life of about 
two years, his first wife died, and he subse- 
quently married Louisa Sanburn, as already 
stated. His death occurred May 17, i860, 
his wife having passed away August 12, 1S58. 
In politics he was an old-line Whig until 
the birth of the Republican party, when he 
voted for its first presidential candidate, 
John C. Fremont. Fraternally he was a 
Mason of high standing in the east. Relig- 
iously he was a Congregationalist, as was 
also his wife. He was a man of strong char- 
acter, a kind husband and father, and a 
good neighbor. 

Reuben S. Marshall was in his tenth year 
when he accompanied his parents to Ogle 
county. His educational advantages were 
very limited and confined strictly to the 
common school, attending a few daj's each 
winter term until he was seventeen years 
old. The longest that time he continuously 
attended was for twenty-one days. He was 
one of the first pupils to attend a school 
taught by John A. Wagner, there being but 
nine enrolled during the term. The school 
house was the typical one of logs, with pun- 
cheon floor and slab seats. On leaving 
school he settled down to a life of hard 
work, and in the sixty-two years that he has 
resided in Ogle county, he has certainly 
done his full share of the work necessar\- to 
its development. 

Mr. Marshall was married January 13, 
1850, to Miss Matilda Steffa, a nati\'e of 



no 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Washington county, Maryland, born July 
29, 183 I, and daughter of William and Eliz- 
abeth Steffa, both of whom were natives of 
the same county and state, and who came 
to Ogle county in 1S44. By this union 
twelve children were born. William C. , 
born March 6, 1853, married Mary Rowe, 
and they have two children. He is living 
in the town of Mount Morris. Mary E., 
born May 25, 1854, died September 19, of 
the same year. Emma May, born May 25, 
1 85 5, married Dr. H. C. Clements, and 
they reside in Chicago. They have one 
child. IraW., born August 24, 1857, mar- 
ried Delia Smith, and they have two chil- 
dren. They are living in Mount Morris 
township. Charles E., born January 30, 
1S59, died September 2, 1859. AlbertusS., 
born July 27, 1S61, married Martha Price, 
and they reside in Oregon, where he is in 
the hotel business, as proprietor of the Sin- 
issippi House. Francis E., born June 12, 
1863, married Anna Smith, and they reside 
in Mount Morris township. Ida E., born 
February 3, 1866, is living at Oregon. John 
C, born September 10, 1867, married Grace 
Koontz, and with their two children they 
are living in Mount Morris township. Grace 
A., born April 24, 1S69, married John M. 
Rinehart, and they have one child. They 
are living in Iowa Falls, Iowa. Viola, 
born December 11, 1S70, married David 
Bock, and they have three children. They 
make their home with our subject. Oliver 
E., born March 21, 1873, is living in Iowa 
Falls, Iowa, where he is engaged in the drug 
business. Mrs. Marshall died Februar)- 24, 
1875. She was a devoted wife and mother, 
and her place in the home circle left a void 
that could not be filled. 

Mr. Marshall has in his possession some 
rare old papers that he prizes very highl}'. 



among them the Ulster County Gazette, 
under date January 4, 1800, containing the 
notice of the death of George Washington, 
which occurred on the 14th of December, 
1799, some twenty days previously. To 
realize something of the progress made in 
means of communication, one has but to 
think of the death of the most noted man 
in the country, and yet it required nearly 
three weeks to carry the news a few hundred 
miles. Now the death of a man in any part 
of the civilized world is knosvn everywhere 
within a few minutes after the occurrence. 
Another one of the papers in Mr. Marshall's 
possession is the New England Weekly 
Journal, of Monday, April 3, 1728. He has 
also the New York Morning Post, of Friday, 
November 7, 1783. The last named con- 
tains notices of several slave sales. Think 
of slave sales in New York! 

In politics Mr. Marshall is a Republican, 
with which party he has acted since the 
" Pathfinder," John C. Fremont, was nomi- 
nated for the presidency in i860. He has 
always manifested an interest in politics and 
local affairs. He has held the office of 
school director for thirty years and that of 
road commissioner for thirty-three years. 
He served two terms as a member of the 
board of supervisors, and was one of the 
building committee for the erection of the 
present court house in Oregon. \\'hile a 
member of the board he served as chairman 
of the claim connnittee for two years, and 
chairman of the salary committee one year. 
Fraternally he was for many years con- 
nected with the Odd Fellows, but is not 
at present in fellowship, his age and the 
distance from the lodge preventing. Re- 
ligiously he is identified with the Lutherans, 
holding membership with the church in Mt. 
Morris. 



THK BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



1 1 



In the sixty-two years in which Mr. Mar- 
shall has lived in Ogle county what wonder- 
ful changes have been made! Then a thinly 
settled country, with neighbors few and far 
between. Now, a perfect hive of industry, 
the country thickly settled with a prosper- 
ous people. When he came to the county 
there were but three log cabins in Oregon 
and but three in the vicinity, and not one 
between Oregon and Freeport, and only 
seven in the latter place. He was here 
when the notorious Driscolls were executed 
and when they committed their worst crimes. 
In the early days it was not always easy to 
even get enough to eat. He remembers that 
on one occasion his father went to Ottawa for 
provisions, soon after their arrival here, and 
while he was gone the family ate up every- 
thing but some dried beans. On those beans 
and some gophers that the boys killed the 
family lived for several days. 

Notwithstanding the hardships endured, 
it was not always dark and gloomy. There 
was a bright side to pioneer life. People 
were as hospitable as the day was long. 
There was little conventiality. Boys and 
girls used to go barefooted until they were 
quite large. The country dance was a source 
of amusement. The boys would go for their 
girls on horseback, and taking them on behind 
away they would go, and "dance till broad 
daylight." Spelling-schools and husking- 
bees were another source of amusement often 
indulged in. All in all they had a good time, 
and few pioneers would be willing to ex- 
change their experience for those of a later 
day. Mr. Marshall has no cause to regret 
becoming a pioneer of Ogle county. He 
has been blessed " in basket and store," and 
has to-day more than a section of as fine 
land as one would care to see, and "the 
wolf has alwaj's been kept from the door." 

12 



TAMES H. DONALDSON, an active 
vJ and enterprising farmer residing on sec- 
tion I, Buffalo township, about three miles 
from Polo, is a native of Ogle county, and 
was born in Brookville township, November 
30, 1854. His father, Walter Donaldson, 
was a native of England, born on the line 
between England and Scotland, but on the 
English side, in 1819. William Donaldson, 
the grandfather, was of Scottish birth, as 
was also his wife. 

In 1 82 1 William Donaldson came with 
his family to the United States, landed in 
Vermont and afterward settled in New 
York. Later he moved to Canada, where 
he lived some years, and in 1839 came to 
Ogle county and settled in Eagle Point 
township, being among the first settlers of 
that township. Taking up a claim in Buf- 
falo Grove, he opened up a farm, purchas- 
ing the land when it came into the market. 
Walter Donaldson came with his parents to 
the county and took up a claim in Brook- 
ville township and at once began its im- 
provement. He later went to Canada, and 
near Toronto married Miss Sarah Sylvester, 
a native of Canada, but of Scotch and Irish 
parentage. After his marriage he returned 
with his bride to his farm in Ogle county 
and here spent the remainder of his life, be- 
coming one of the enterprising and success- 
ful farmers, and a highly honored citizen. 
He served his township as a member of the 
board of supervisors, and in other official 
positions. He died on his old farm Novem- 
ber 28, 1 888, while his wife passed away 
about six years previously. They were the 
parents of three children, the others being 
William, a farmer of Lincoln township, and 
Ellen, wife of Arthur McMaster, of Fowler, 
Colorado. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 



tl2 



thp: biographical record. 



hood on the old home farm and was edu- 
cated in the schools of the neighborhood. 
He remained with his father till his death 
and carried on the old place for several 
years after. He was married in Whiteside 
county, Illinois, January 15, 1889, to Miss 
Agnes McNeil, a native of Whiteside coun- 
ty, where she was reared. In the schools 
of Sterling, that county, she finished her 
education, and for some years prior to her 
marriage engaged in teaching in the public 
schools. She is a daughter of Robert Mc- 
Neil, a native of Scotland who came to the 
United States when a young man, located 
in Whiteside county, and there engaged in 
agricultural pursuits. He married Jean 
Lyle, also a native of Scotland, and daugh- 
ter of James Lyle, a pioneer of Ogle coun- 
ty. To Mr. and Mrs. Donaldson three 
children have been born — Robert W., Har- 
old J. and Mildred. 

Mr. Donaldson continued to live on the 
family homestead until 1893, when he re- 
moved to Rock Falls, Whiteside county, 
Illinois, where he rented a place for a few 
months while looking for a new farm. In 
the fall of 1893 he decided on his present 
place and immediately made the purchase. 
On the 1st of March, 1894, he moved to 
the farm and has no cause to regret his 
choice of location. He is now engaged in 
general farming and stock raising and is 
meeting with a fair degree of success. 

The first presidential vote cast by Mr. 
Donaldson was in 1876, when he voted for 
Samuel J. Tilden, since which time he has 
voted the Democratic ticket, his last presi- 
dential vote being for John M. Palmer, in 
1896. He was not with the majority of 
his party on the financial question, and is 
yet proud to be classed among the so-called 
"gold Democrats" of his party. Relig- 



iously he and his wife are identified with 
the Presbyterian church at Polo. Frater- 
nally he is a Mason and is a member of the 
lodge at Polo. He has passed through all 
the chairs, and was worshipful master of 
the lodge in 1897 and in 1898, daring which 
time he represented the lodge in the grand 
lodge of the state. A lifelong resident of 
the county, his interests are here, and he is 
always willing to do all he can to make the 
county occupy an exalted rank among the 
counties of the state. 



CAPTAIN WILLIAM T. DODDS, who 
is now living retired in Byron, is one 
of the veterans of the Civil war, and bears 
an honorable record for brave service in 
the cause of freedom and union, and in the 
paths of peace he has also won an envia- 
ble reputation through the sterling quali- 
ties which go to the making of a good cit- 
izen. 

The Captain is a native of Ohio, born 
in Nile township, Scioto county, August 7, 
1 83 1, and is of Irish descent, his grand- 
father, James Dodds, being a native of the 
Emerald Isle. He was reared and educated 
on the Isle of Man and on crossing the At- 
lantic to America became a resident of 
Pennsylvania. Major John B. Dodds, the 
Captain's father, was born in the Keystone 
state in 1797 or 1798, and there passed 
his boyhood and youth, acquiring a good 
practical education for that early day. He 
was a second cousin of General Scott, and 
a first cousin of Governor Samuel Black, 
one of the most prominent men of Penn- 
sylvania in his day. When a young man 
Major Dodds went to Scioto county, Ohio, 
where he engaged in school teaching for 
several years with marked success. He 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



113 



married Ann Tucker, a native of that state 
and a daughter of John Tucker, and they 
began housekeeping upon a farm in Scioto 
county. He became one of the most prom- 
inent and influential men of the county, was 
honored with a number of official positions, 
and served as sheriff for one or more terms. 
During the Mexican war he was commis- 
sioned major and detailed as recruiting offi- 
cer. In 1855 he determined to try his 
fortune farther west and moved to Ellis- 
ville, Fulton county, Illinois, where he 
spent his last years in retirement, dying 
there in 1883. His first wife, the mother 
of our subject, had died in Ohio, at the age 
of fifty-one. Later he was again married 
and had by the second union three chil- 
dren. Harvey, the oldest child of the first 
marriage, died at the age of eleven years. 
David T. came to Illinois in 1853, and for 
a number of years engaged in merchandis- 
ing at Ellisville, but finally located on a 
farm in Fulton county. From there he 
went to Chattanooga, Tennessee, where he 
engaged in the real estate business and was 
very successful. He died there about 1892. 
Martha married Nelson Moore and died soon 
afterward. Sarah J. married Samuel Ed- 
ward, a farmer in Fulton county and is 
now deceased. William T. , our subject, is 
the next of the family. J. W. served as 
first lieutenant of Company B, Forty- 
seventh Illinois Volunteer Infantry during 
the Civil war, and is now treasurer of Ful- 
ton county, making his home in Lewiston. 
Captain Dodds grew to manhood in 
Scioto county, Ohio, and received a com- 
mon-school education, which has been 
greatly supplemented by reading and study 
in subsequent years. In 1853 he went 
with his brother David to Fulton county, 
Illinois, and spent nearly a year with his 



uncle, James Schearer. Later he engaged 
in farming with his brother-in-law, Samuel 
Edwards, for a year or two, and in 1859 
crossed the plains with ox teams to Pikes 
Peak, being about eight weeks on the way. 
Prospects not being good, he and one com- 
rade went to Kansas and in Brown county 
he took a quarter section of land. Return- 
ing to Fulton county, Illinois, he built a 
boat and run a ferry across Spoon river at 
Ellisville, in i860, and did a profitable 
business. 

Feeling his country needed his services 
Captain Dodds laid aside all personal inter- 
ests in 1861, and joined the boys in blue as 
a private of Company C, Seventeenth Illi- 
nois Volunteer Infantry, but was soon pro- 
moted to the rank of sergeant. With his 
regiment he went to Missouri, and after his 
first engagement at Fredericktown, Missouri, 
was commissioned first lieutenant. Later he 
participated in the battles of Belmont, 
Fort Henry, Fort Donelson, Shiloh and 
Corinth. At the battle of Fort Donelson 
he received a gunshot wound and at Shiloh 
was again wounded. He commanded his 
company at Shiloh and Corinth and was 
called captain though never commissioned 
such. When he entered the service he 
weighed one hundred and sixty-five pounds, 
but on resigning, in 1863, his weight had 
been reduced to one hundred ten and a half. 

On the 14th of September, 1863, in Ogle 
county. Captain Dodds was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Ellen W. Ercanbrack, a na- 
tive of Little Falls, New York, and a daugh- 
ter of William S. Ercanbrack, who located 
herein 181 5. The children born of this union 
are Albert R. ; Charles A., a traveling sales- 
man, who is married and resides in Joliet, 
Illinois; Jessie B., wife of Fred Nott, a 
merchant of Byron, Oglg county; Grace 



114 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Ellen, wife of W. E. Cort, a successful law- 
yer of Lewiston, Montana; and W'illiam B., 
who was drowned in the Rock river at the 
age of seventeen years. 

After his marriage Captain Dodds locat- 
ed at Byron, and for one year carried the 
mail, one day to Oregon and the next to 
Rockford, but at the end of that time sold 
his route. In 1865 he removed to Peoria, 
where he engaged in the grocery business 
six or seven years, and from there went to 
Canton, Fulton county, where he was in- 
terested in the grain business tor two years. 
On selling out in 1873, he returned to By- 
ron and assisted his father-in-law on the 
farm for a year. He then went on the road 
as salesman for a Chicago house, and during 
the thirteen years he traveled was with 
three different firms, his route being in this 
state the entire time. He had a large trade 
and built up a good business for each house. 
He was very successful in this line. On 
leaving the road, he bought an established 
hardware business at Byron, which he suc- 
cessfully carried on for eleven jears, selling 
out in September, 1892. He was one of 
the most enterprising and progressive busi- 
ness men of the county, and seemed to 
prosper in all his undertakings so that he is 
now quite well-to-do, while he lives retired 
from active business. 

In 1852 the Captain cast his first presi- 
dential ballot for General Winfield Scott, 
and in 1 856 supported John C. Fremont, 
since which time he has been an uncompro- 
mising Republican, but he has never cared 
for official honors, preferring to give his un- 
divided attention to his business interests. 
He has always been a strong supporter of 
temperance. He is a Knight Templar Ma- 
son, belonging to the blue lodge No. i 5 of 
Peoria, and the chapter and conimnndery of 



Peoria, and is a thirty-third degree Mason, 
and he is also a prominent member of the 
Grand Army Post of Byron. A man of 
strong individuality and indubitable probity, 
one who has attained to a due measure of 
success in the affairs of life, and whose in- 
fluence has always been exerted for the 
good of the community, this honored veter- 
an assuredly demands representation in this 
volume. 



PETER S. MEYERS.— While ■ ■ the race 
is not always to the swift nor the bat- 
tle to the strong," the invariable law of 
destiny accords to tireless energy, industry 
and ability a successful career. The truth 
of this assertion is abundantly verified in the 
life of Mr. Meyers, a well-known and highly 
respected citizen of Forreston township, re- 
siding on section 28. 

He was born near Harrisburg, Dauphin 
county, Pennsylvania, January 7, 1831, and 
is of French descent, his great-grandfather 
having come from France and settled in Berks 
county, Pennsylvania. The grandfather, 
Jacob Mej'ers, was a native of that county, 
and the father, Peter Meyers, was born at 
the same place September 11, 1805. The 
family was established in Dauphin county 
when the latter was a lad of nine 
years,, and as a pioneer of that region Jacob 
Meyers materiall)- aided in its development 
and upbuilding. There his son Peter grew 
to manhood and married Hannah Thoff- 
stall, also a native of Pennsylvania. He 
continued to carry on the old home farm for 
a number of years, but in 1852, with his 
family, he came to Ogle county, Illinois. 
With his three sons and one son-in-law, he 
purchased eight hundred acres of land in 
I'orreston township, adjoining the present 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 115 

village of that name, and he, himself, locat- pany and gives a cheerful support to all en- 

ed on the farm where our subject now re- terprises which he believes calculated to 

sides, making his home there until called prove of public benefit. 

from this life in 1891, at the age of eighty- Mrs. Meyers died in 1871, leaving three 

si.K years, eleven months and twenty-two children, namely; Millmon Riley, who was 

days. His wife preceded him a number of an engineer on the Illinois Central railroad 

years, dying in 1870. Our subject is the for several years; Alfred Ale.xander, who 

youngest of their four children, the others owns and operates a farm of one hundred 

being as follows; Eliza, who married and sixty acres near Polo, Ogle county; and 

Joseph Fisher and died in Ogle county; Louisa Jane, wife of Henry Tice, a business 

Jacob P., who at one time was a harness- man of Polo. In Forreston township, Feb- 

maker in Mt. Carroll, Illinois, and later at ruary 8, 1872, Mr. Meyers was again mar- 

at Fort Dodge, Iowa, for some years, but is ried, his second union being with Miss Mc- 

now living retired at Waterloo, that state; linda Hoffa, a daughter of Jacob Hoffa. 

and John, who is engaged in the real estate She was born in Northumberland county, 

business at Spokane Falls, Washington. Pennsylvania, but was reared in Ogle coun- 

Peter S. Meyers grew to manhood in ty. Of the eight children born of this 

Pottsville, Pennsylvania, where he learned union seven are now living, namely; Sarah 

the cabinetmaker's trade, and also painting Ann, wife of Edward E. Haller, whose 

and fancy graining, at which he worked for sketch appears elsewhere in this work; 

a number of years. In 1852 he accompanied William H., a farmer of Forreston town- 

the family on their removal to Ogle county, ship; Hannah H., wife of Frank Diehl, a 

and in addition to helping his father on the farmer of the same township; MelindaA., 

home farm, he worked at cabinetmaking at home; Daniel P., a student in the For- 

for neighboring farmers and in West Grove. reston school; Jacob C, at home; Edith 

In October, 1857, at White Oak Grove, E., who died at the age of six years; and 

Ogle county, he was united in marriage Lucien G. , who is attending the home 

with Miss Sarah Adams, who was born in school. 

Northumberland county, Pennsylvania, in Mr. Meyers manifested his patriotism 
1830, and was reared there, coming to Illi- and loyalty to country during the Civil war 
nois when a young lady, and they began by enlisting at Dixon, in February, 1864, in 
their domestic life upon his farm in For- Company F, Fifteenth Illinois \'olunteer In- 
reston township. In 1853 and 1854 he had fantry, and entered the service as corporal, 
hauled stone and erected the only stone With the Army of the Cumberland, the reg- 
house in the township. This neat and sub. iment participated in many skirmishes, and 
stantial structure is still standing, making a later joined General Sherman's command at 
pleasant home for the family. Mr. Meyers Morehead City, and with him marched to 
now gives his entire time and attention to the sea. They took part in the grand re- 
agricultural pursuits and is the owner of two view at Washington, District of Columbia, 
fine farms of one hundred and sixty acres in then went to Louisville, Iventucky, Leaven- 
Forreston township. He is a charter mem- worth, Kansas, and later to Smoky Hill, 
ber of the Forreston Fire Insurance Com- and were finally discharged at Leavenworth 



ii6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



in August, 1865. Mr. Meyers first united 
in Oregon Post, but is now a member of the 
Grand Army Post at Forreston. He cast 
his first presidential vote for General Win- 
field Scott, the Whig candidate, but since 
the organization of the Republican party in 
1856, he has fought under its banner. He 
has been honored with various official posi- 
tions, serving as highway commissioner over 
fifteen years, township treasurer twelve 
years, and school director twenty-two years, 
being president of the board most of the 
time. He was made a Mason in Pennsyl- 
vania, and is now a member of Mt. Morris 
Lodge, F. & A. M. At the age of fourteen 
years he joined the Reformed church, and is 
now a member of the church of that denom- 
ination at Forreston, while his wife holds 
membership in the English Lutheran 
church. Upright and honorable in all the 
relations of life, he has the esteem and con- 
fidence of all who know him and this brief 
sketch of his life will be read with interest 
by his many friends in Ogle county. 



GEORGE WINDLE, a thoroughly pro- 
gressive farmer and stock raiser, resid- 
ing on section 15, Mt. Morris township, was 
born in Shenandoah county, Virginia, No- 
vember 18, i84i,and is the son of William 
and Mary (Kretsinger) Windle, the former 
a native of the same county and state, born 
in 1807, and the latter in 1806. His father 
was the son of George Windle, a wagon 
manufacturer, also a native of Shenandoah 
county, Virginia. His father, the great- 
grandfather of our subject, was a native of 
Germany, who emigrated to this country, 
hjcated in the Shenandoah valley, and there 
spent the remainder of his life. George 



Windle died at the age of eighty-nine years 
in Shenandoah county. He was the father 
of nine children — William, Samuel, Joseph, 
Amos, Richard, Branson, George, Eliza- 
beth and Margaret. 

William Windle received his education 
in the common schools of his native county, 
and after leaving school took his regular 
place upon his father's farm and assisted in 
its cultivation. Later he became the pos- 
sessor of a farm known as the " Cedar Creek 
farm," which he continued to cultivate un- 
til his removal to Ogle county in 1855. On 
coming to this county he rented land for 
about nine years, and in 1864 purchased 
two hundred acres of Mrs. Hess, in Pine 
Creek township, and there resided until his 
death in 1879. To William and Mary Win- 
dle ten children were born, all of whom are 
yet living — John, Cornelius, Lydia, Maggie, 
George, William, Joseph, L. W., Jackson 
and Isaiah. The father died in July, 1879, 
and the mother in 1875. They were both 
members of the Lutheran church. In poli- 
tics he was a Jacksonian Democrat. 

In his native state the subject of this 
sketch began his education in the common 
schools, attending during the winter terms. 
He accompanied the family to Ogle county, 
arriving here at the age of fourteen years. 
Here he also attended the district schools 
during the winter and in the summer giving 
his entire time to his father in the cultiva- 
tion of the farm. After attaining his ma- 
jority, he entered Rock River Seminary, 
which he attended three terms, closing his 
school life in that institution. At the age 
of eighteen years he commenced to learn 
the carpenter's trade under Isaiah Speaker, 
and served an apprenticeship of two years. 
He then worked at the trade as a journey- 
man until 1866. In 1863, in company with 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



117 



twelve others, he started from Mt. Morris 
for Pike's Peak, Colorado, going overland 
with a team, being thirty days in route 
Arriving at Denver, he commenced work at 
his trade and continued there about ten 
months. He then concluded to return home, 
and started back with a mule team. Arriv- 
ing at the Missouri river, he took the stage 
for State Center, Iowa, and from the latter 
place he came as far as Polo by railroad, 
and from there to his home in Mt. Morris 
township in a buggy. During the winter of 
1865-6 he taught school in Mt. Morris town- 
ship, and in the fall of 1866 he purchased 
eighty acres of Mrs. Annie Rine, and to that 
farm he removed and there lived until 1872, 
when he went into the mercantile business 
at Mt. Morris, in which he continued two 
years. He then traded his stock of goods 
and his eighty-acre farm for his present 
farm of two hundred and forty acres, on 
which he has since continued to live. 

On the 20th of September, 1865, Mr. 
Windle was united in marriage with Miss 
Mary E. Sprecher, born in Ogle county, 
Illinois, June 6, 1843, and the daughter of 
Philip and Catherine (Houk) Sprecher, 
natives of Washington county, Maryland. 
Her father was a farmer by occupation, and 
came by teams to Ogle county, Illinois, in 
1839, settling on section 25, Mt. Morris 
township, where he purchased three hun- 
dred and sixty acres of land, to which he 
later added one hundred and sixty acres, 
giving him a valuable farm of five hundred 
and twenty acres. Philip and Catherine 
Sprecher were the parents of eleven chil- 
dren, five of whom died in early childhood, 
the remainder reaching years of maturity — 
Daniel, George, John, Adasale, Ann and 
Mary E. Both parents are now deceased. 
In politics he was a Democrat. Both were 



reared in the Lutheran faith, but later 
united with the Advent church. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Windle six children 
have been born: Charles Elmer died Au- 
gust 24, 1 88 1, his death resulting from an 
accident, being injured by a traction engine, 
and only living thirty-six hours after the ac- 
cident occurred. Mary Catherine married 
J. H. Harnly, of Auburn, Illinois, and they 
are now living in Eldora, Iowa, where both 
are employed as teachers in the Industrial 
school; Addie married Prof. Ira R. Hend- 
rickson, by whom she had two children, 
one, Ruth Mary, now living. He is engaged 
in teaching in Lamar, Missiouri; Orpha 
Irene is teaching in Mt. Morris township; 
^^'illiam, teaching in Mt. Morris township; 
Philip W. is living at home; Thurlow died 
at the age of sixteen days. Mr. and Mrs. 
Windle have adopted a little boy, taking, 
when but five months old, Clifford Neff 
Windle. They have also made a home for 
a young miss from Chicago, Clara Fallask- 
son, thirteen years old. These deeds speak 
well for the kindly disposition of Mr. and 
Mrs. Windle. 

In politics Mr. Windle is a Democrat, 
and as a member of the Democratic party 
he has taken an active interest in its well 
being, attending the various local conven- 
tions and giving of his time to advance the 
cause. He has served as a delegate to the 
state convention of his party, and is now 
serving as a member of the congressional 
conmiittee. Interested in educational af- 
fairs, he served for twelve years as a mem- 
ber of the school board. Religiously he is 
identified with the Methodist Episcopal 
church, being one of the trustees. He takes 
an active interest in the work of the church, 
and does his full duty in maintaining its 
services. 



ni 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



In his business relations Mr. Windle has 
been quite successful, and in addition to 
the home farm he owns one hundred and 
seven acres southwest of Mt. Morris, and 
also three hundred and twenty acres in 
Buena Vista county, Iowa. His farm is 
well stocked and is kept in excellent condi- 
tion and under a high state of cultivation. 
In 1 876 he set out a large number of shade and 
ornamental trees which add to the attractive 
appearance of the place. His dwelling 
house has been remodeled, making it a fine 
country residence. In stock he is making 
a specialty of Durham short-horn cattle, 
Chester white hogs and Norman horses. 
In addition to his farm work, he is agent 
for the Aultman & Taylor Company, and 
the Rumely Company, manufacturers of 
steam engines and threshers, and is also 
dealing to some extent in real estate. He 
is a very busy man, very industrious, and it 
is no wonder that success has crowned his 
efforts. While he is not numbered among 
those who claim to be pioneers, he has yet 
resided in Ogle county for about forty-four 
years, and it is but just to say that in that 
time he has done what he could to advance 
the business and commercial interests of the 
county, and is deserving of the high honor 
and respect in which he is held. 



JOHN L. SMITH, one of the honored 
pioneers and highly esteemed citizens 
of Ogle county, who now makes his home in 
Leaf River, was born at Sharpsburg, Wash- 
ington county, Maryland, April 2, 1832, 
and is a son of Abram Smith, who spent 
his entire life there. Our subject, with his 
mother and maternal grandfather, came to 
Ogle county, Illinois, in 1839, and here he 
grew to manhood amid scenes common to 



frontier life, early becoming familiar with 
every department of farm work. When 
quite young he began to earn his own liveli- 
hood and the success that he has achieved 
is due entirely to his own unaided efforts. 

On the 3d of October, 1S54, Mr. Smith 
was united in marriage with Miss Susan A. 
Myers, a native of Washington county, 
Maryland, and a daughter of Jacob Myers, 
who came to this county in 1S37, entered 
government land and developed a farm, on 
which he died in 1876. Here Mrs. Smith 
was reared as one of a large family of chil- 
dren. Five children were born to our sub- 
ject and his wife, namely: Mary E., who 
died at the age of four years; Harriet C. , 
wife of John Palmer, a farmer of Ogle 
county; Lydia H., wife of Jacob Palmer, 
also a substantial farmer of Leaf River 
township; and Elmer G. and Jacob M., who 
assist their father in carrying on the home 
farm. 

After his marriage Mr. Smith operated 
the Myers homestead for six years and then 
made his first purchase of land, consisting 
of one hundred and twenty-seven and a 
half acres in Leaf River township, which he 
soon transformed into a fine farm, placing 
the land under a high state of cultivation 
and erecting thereon good and substantial 
buildings that stand as monuments to his 
thrift and enterprise. As his financial 
resources increased, he added to the original 
purchase until he has three hundred and 
twenty acres all in one bodj', and he has 
also bought one hundred and twenty acres 
of the Myers homestead. All the property 
is well improved and quite valuable. Mr. 
and Mrs. Smith commenced their married 
life in limited circumstances, but prosperity 
has crowned their combined efforts and 
they are now numbered among the sub- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



119 



stantial and well-to-do citizens of the com- 
munity. Besides their farm property they 
own a good home in Leaf River, where 
they are now living retired, surrounded by 
all of the comforts and many of the luxuries 
of life. They and their family hold mem- 
bership in the Christian church at that place 
and are held in high regard by all who have 
witnessed their successful struggle with ad- 
versity. In his political views Mr. Smith 
is a pronounced Republican, but has never 
cared for official honors, preferring to give 
his undivided attention to his business in- 
terests. He takes considerable interest in 
educational affairs, and for twelve years 
most acceptably served as township trustee. 
For almost sixty years he has watched with 
interest the growth and development of this 
region, and has been no unimportant factor 
in its upbuilding and prosperity. 



AMOS F. MOORE, who resides on sec- 
tion 34, Woosung township, is not only 
a prominent agriculturist, but is an up-to- 
date business man and stock raiser, with a 
reputation which is confined not alone to 
the state of Illinois, but he is well and fav- 
orably known in almost every part of the 
country, especially where the people are in- 
terested in fine thoroughbred horses. He 
was born March 11, 1832, in Ackworth, 
Sullivan county. New Hampshire, and is 
the son of John and Mehitable (Foster) 
Moore, the former born December 31, 1795, 
in Petersborough, New Hampshire, and the 
latter October 9, 1798, in Hillsborough, 
New Hampshire. 

John Moore was the son of Samuel and 
Jennie (Thompson) Moore, also natives of 
New Hampshire. Samuel Moore was the 
son of Deacon Samuel Moore, who moved 

13 



from Londonderry, New Hampshire, to 
Petersborough, in the same state, in 1751. 
The ancestor of Deacon Samuel Moore was 
John Moore, who was murdered February 
I, 1692, in the massacre of Glencoe. His 
wife escaped and that night a boy baby was 
born, John Moore, who moved to London- 
derry, New Hampshire, in 1718, and who is 
the progenitor of the Moores in America. 
This John Moore married Janet Cochrane, 
and to them were born seven children, of 
whom Deacon Samuel Moore was second 
in order of birth. Deacon Samuel Moore 
married Margaret Morrison, and they be- 
came the parents of six children, of whom 
Samuel, the grandfather of our subject, was 
third in order of birth. Samuel Moore 
served in the Revolutionary war, and was 
mustered in at the time of the alarm at 
Lexington, April 19, 1775. He also served 
in the war of 18 12. He married Jennie 
Thompson, July 34, 1784, and by this mar- 
riage were eleven children, of whom John 
Moore, the father of our subject, was the 
sixth. Samuel Moore died February 5, 
1844, at the age of eighty-seven years. He 
was a farmer by occupation, a very stoutly 
built and robust man, and our subject well 
remembers him breaking a colt when well 
past eighty years old. 

John Moore grew to manhood in New 
Hampshire, and was a mechanic and farm- 
er. In the winter he engaged in the manu- 
facture of spinning wheels and reels, and in 
the summer engaged in farm work. He 
was united in marriage with Mehitable 
Foster, on the 13th of April, 1824. She 
was a daughter of Aaron and Mehitable 
(Nichols) Foster, who were the parents of 
ten children, eight sons and two daughters. 
One of their sons. Rev. Aaron Fos- 
ter, was a minister and was the father 



120 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of the Home Missionary Society, hav- 
ing given pubHc utterance to the first words 
spoken in favor of the enterprise. Another 
son, Lieutenant Amos Foster, was stationed 
at Fort Dearborn, Chicago, for a few years. 
He purchased twenty-five lots on the sec- 
tion where the depot of the Chicago & 
Northwestern railway is now located, and 
located there in the 'twenties. He was 
killed in 1832, at Fort Howard, Green Bay, 
Michigan, by an insubordinate soldier, whom 
he had ordered under arrest. Another son. 
Dr. John H. Foster, later removed to Chi- 
cago, where he looked after his deceased 
brother's property. He also became inter- 
ested in Chicago real estate, purchasing 
what is now known as Lincoln Park, for 
which he paid thirty-five dollars per acre. 
In after years his heirs sold portions of it 
for twenty thousand dollars an acre for 
park purposes. Our subject built the first 
fence put up in that vicinity, while he was 
living with the Doctor. The Doctor died in 
1874, leaving an estate estimated at several 
million dollars. Another one of the sons, 
Sewell Foster, founded the town of Musca- 
tine, Iowa. He was a prominent horticult- 
uralist, and was the father of the Agricult- 
ural College at Ames, Iowa. To John 
Moore and wife six children were born, two 
of whom died in infancy. Of those who 
lived, Philenia is living in Malone, New 
York; J. Leavitt is living in Polo, Illinois; 
Amos F. is our subject; and Sarah E. is 
living in Seattle, Washington. John Moore 
died in Ackworth, New Hampshire, August 
II, 1834. His wife survived him fifty-two 
years, dying at the age of eighty-eight years. 
Amos F. Moore received his primary 
education in the schools of Malone, New 
York, but his real education was received in 
the school of experience, or "hard knocks," 



as he expresses it. He began to work for 
himself at a very early age. When eleven 
years old he was put out to work for neigh- 
boring farmers, and when fifteen years old 
he came west to Chicago, where his uncle. 
Dr. John Foster, was then living. He as- 
sisted his uncle for a time in collecting his 
rents, and in various ways. In 1849 he 
unloaded the first rail from the vessel to be 
used in the construction of the Galena Union 
railroad, his uncle being a director in the 
company. In that same year, when out 
horseback riding, he was favorably impressed 
with the land, and his uncle purchased him 
a farm, which comprises now the city of 
Evanston, for which he paid fifteen hundred 
dollars. Having an attack of the ague, Mr. 
Moore returned east in the fall of 1849, and 
the next year his uncle wrote him that a 
lot of fanatics wanted to buy the farm for 
twenty-five thousand dollars. He sold the 
land, but now thinks that instead of being 
fanatics, those desiring to purchase were 
very far-seeing men. 

In the latter part of 185 1, Mr. Moore 
returned to Chicago, where he engaged in 
the foundry business, having built the larg- 
est foundry in the city. In 1853 he came 
to Ogle county and purchased land, but 
continued in business in Chicago until 1856, 
when he took up his permanent residence 
in the county. On the 6th of October, 
1856, he was united in marriage with Miss 
Marcia A. Cutts, who was born November 
13, 183S, in York county, Maine, and 
daughter of Captain Hiram and Eunice 
(Brown) Cutts, the former a native of Ports- 
mouth, New Hampshire, born in 

and the latter a native of the same city, 
born February 4, 1802. Captain Hiram 
Cutts was the son of Thomas Donald Cutts, 
who was probably a merchant in Ports- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



121 



mouth. Hiram Cutts followed the sea for 
many years, in the merchant service, trad- 
ing all over the world. In his family were 
nine children, — Joseph B., Alzira, Hiram, 
Thomas, Emily, Harriet, Elizabeth, Mar- 
cia and George. In politics he was an old- 
line Whig. In September, 1846, with his 
wife and family, he came to Ogle county, 
and located on a farm in Buffalo township, 
where the city of Polo is now located. For 
the erection of his house, barns and fences, 
he hauled all the lumber from Chicago. He 
died on his farm April 5, 1850, at the age 
of fifty-two years. His wife survived him, 
and died November 28, 1884. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Moore seven children 
have been born: John died at the age of 
four months; Albert C. is a graduate of the 
State University, Champaign, and is now in 
the employ of the Oregon Short Line rail- 
road. He is the owner of several ranches 
in that state. A. Foster is a practicing 
physician and surgeon, of Dixon, Illinois. 
George H. is now attending the University 
of Wisconsin, at Madison. Fred L. is at 
home. Stata M. is also at home, and is 
her father's stenographer. Frank is attend- 
ing the high school in Polo. 

Mr. Moore erected his dwelling house 
upon his farm in 1856, but did not com- 
mence active farming operations until the 
spring of 1857. To his original purchase 
of one hundred and twenty- acres, he has 
added from time to time until his home 
farm now comprises six hundred acres of 
fine land, which is kept under the highest 
state of cultivation. Before moving to his 
farm, in 1856, he planted a large apple 
orchard, and has since been adding to it un- 
til it is now one of the largest in the north- 
ern part of the state. In i860 he made an 
artificial pond on his farm, the water from 



which he used for stock purposes until wind 
mills came into general use, since which 
time it has been used as a skating pond. 

In 1865 Mr. Moore purchased three 
Morgan horses of pure blood and has since 
been engaged in breeding the same. He is 
now the largest breeder of that stock in the 
United States, and has continually upon his 
place more than sixty head of thorough- 
breds. During the World's Fair in Chi- 
cago, there was formed a National Morgan 
Horse Breeders' Association, and he be- 
came one of its charter members. He is 
now president of the state of Illinois Asso- 
ciation of Breeders of Morgan Horses. In 
everything calculated to advance the inter- 
ests of the farming community he takes a 
lively and commendable interest. In 1892 
he became a member of the Farmers' In- 
stitute, and in 1893 was appointed di- 
rector in the same, a position which 
he still holds. In 1897 he was elected 
president of the Institute and is still fill- 
ing that position. He is also a member of 
the executive committee of the Pure Food 
Association of the state of Illinois, and is a 
member of the executive committee of the 
Stock Breeders' Association of Illinois. 

In politics Mr. Moore is an earnest and 
stanch Republican, and has been identified 
with the party since its organization. Be- 
fore the division of the township he was su- 
pervisor of Buffalo township one term. He 
has also served as road commissioner for 
fifteen years, and been president of the 
board of school trustees of township 23, 
range 8, for the same length of time. For 
three years he was a member of the board 
of commissioners from Woosung township. 
He was the man that made the test case 
and carried it to the supreme court, to as- 
certain whether the Illinois CentrEtl railroad 



122 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



could take land when and where it pleased. 
In all that he did the rights of the people 
were always in view, and it is a pleasure to 
him to think that he has secured their 
rights at times when they might have been 
irrevocably lost. He is a man of the peo- 
ple, and believes the people have rights 
which corporations are bound to respect. 
While not a politician in the common ac- 
ceptation of the term, he has on more than 
one occasion made his influence felt 
with politicians. In the winter of 1898-9 
1898-9 he assisted in securing an appropri- 
ation of one hundred thousand dollars to- 
ward the formation of a new agricultural 
college to be located somewhere in the mil- 
itary tract. His ideas on the subject were 
such as to command the respect of the 
members of the assembly, resulting in the 
appropriation as stated. As president of 
the Farmers' Institute he has given the 
subject of agricultural instruction much 
thought, and he can clearly express what 
he thinks. As a citizen of Ogle county he 
at all times has its best interest at heart, 
and freely gives of his time and means to 
advance its interests. To such men great 
credit is due for the proud position which 
the county occupies among the one hun- 
dred and two counties of the state. 



J 



OSHUA THOMAS.— Among the pio- 
neer settlers of Ogle county this gentle- 
man is especially worthy of notice in a work 
of this kind for he was prominently identi- 
fied with the development and prosperity of 
this section of the state for many years, and 
being possessed of a rare amount of energy, 
proved a valued member of the young and 
rapidly growing community. 

Mr. Thomas was born in Washington 



county, Maryland, March 8, 181 1, a son of 
Henry and Catherine (Schecter) Thomas. 
In their family were eleven children, whose 
names and dates of birth are as follows: 
Susanna, February 19, 1809; Joshua, March 
8, 181 1 ; Elias, January 27, 181 3; Ezra, 
July 21, 1815; Ruanna, March 23, 1817; 
Abraham, April 17, 1819; Lydia, March 12, 
1821; Julian, June 4, 1823; Samuel, August 
26, 1S25; Elizabeth, February 10, 1827; 
and Wilhelmina, February 27, 1829. 

In the county of his nativity, Joshua 
Thomas grew to manhood, receiving a com- 
mon-school education and obtaining an ex- 
cellent knowledge of every department of 
farm work. There he was first married, 
February 7, 1833, to Miss Salina Landis, 
who was born March 7, 181 2, and they be- 
came the parents of the following children: 
Permelia Margaret, born November 30, « 
1833; Mary Catherine, October 24, 1S36; 
Henry L. , October 24, 1S38; William How- 
ard, June 19, 1842, died October 28, 1S43; 
Jacob Oscar, born March 3, 1845, died Oc- 
tober 21, 1845; Lewis Ferdinand, born 
September 25, 1846; and John Edwin, born 
January 23, 1849. The wife and mother 
was called to her final rest September 22, 
1854, at the age of forty-two years, six 
months and fifteen days. 

For his second wife, Mr. Thomas mar- 
ried Susan Felker, who was born in Wash- 
ington county, Maryland, August 11, 1832, 
a daughter of Abraham and Susan (W'iii- 
gert) Felker. Her father was born in 
Franklin county, Pennsylvania, in 1802, 
and was a son of John Felker, a native of 
Germany, who came to America at the age 
of twelve years and was bound out to pay his 
passage. He was a tanner by trade, but 
most of his life was devoted to farming, 
his home being in Franklin county, Penn- 




JOSHUA THOMAS. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



I2S 



sylvania. He became a loyal and devoted 
citizen of his adopted country and as a sol- 
dier took an active part in the Revolution- 
ary war and the war of 1812. In Lancas- 
ter county, Pennsylvania, he married Cath- 
erine Wilt, and to them were born five 
children: Barbara, Catherine, Abraham, 
Henry and Elizabeth. John Felker was a 
self-made man in every sense of the word 
and in business affairs was remarkably suc- 
cessful, giving all his children one hundred 
and sixty acres of land before his death. 
At one time he traveled from Franklin 
county, Pennsylvania, to Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland, where he purchased between 
twelve and fifteen hundred acres of land, 
carrying the money in silver and gold in the 
pockets of his saddle, and was unmolested. 
In addition to his landed property, he also 
owned many slaves. He died suddenly of 
cholera morbus and his wife survived him 
less than a year. During his youth Abra- 
ham Felker, father of Mrs. Thomas, re- 
moved with his family to Maryland, and in 
the subscription schools of that state ob- 
tained his education, and when not in school 
aided his father on the farm. At the age 
of twenty-one he married Susan Wingert, 
by whom he had two children: Catherine, 
widow of F. M. Tice, of Mt. Morris, Illi- 
inois; and Susan, wife of our subject. The 
mother of these children died August 16, 
1832, when Mrs. Thomas was only five days 
old. In 1S33, the father married Catherine 
Wingert, a sister of his first wife, and a 
daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth (Binkley) 
Wingert, farming people, in whose family 
were eleven children: John, Henry, Han- 
nah, Susan, Elizabeth, Catherine, Jacob, 
Joseph, David, Adam and Daniel. Mr. 
Wingert died near Greencastle, Pennsyl- 
vania, about 1S60, having visited Mrs. 



Thomas a short time before his death. Mr. 
Felker had eleven children by his second 
marriage, namely: Sarah married Theo- 
dore Hewitt, of Washington county, Mary- 
land, and after his death wedded Henry 
Sharer, a retired merchant, by whom she 
had one child, Charles H. Her death oc- 
curred in 1892. Hiram married Sabina 
Sprong and lives in Kansas City, Missouri. 
David married Delilah Taylor and lives in 
Nebraska. John B., a prominent physician 
of Amboy, Illinois, married Jennie Miller, of 
Pennsylvania, and died in 1888. Samuel 
died at the age of four years. Willoughby 
married Alice Buterbaugh and lives in Leaf 
River township. Ogle county. Mary Ellen 
is the wife of Henry Thomas, a sketch of 
whom appears elsewhere in this volume. 
Noble F. married Alice Fox and is engaged 
in the practice of medicine in Amboy, Illi- 
nois. Jennie is the wife of J. O. Thomas, 
of Mt. Morris township. Ogle county. Alice 
Louisa is the wife of Almon King, and lives 
in Redwood, Minnesota. Hannah Joseph- 
ine died at the age of fourteen years. The 
mother of these children died in 1880 

The children born to Mr. and Mrs. 
Thomas are as follows: Ettie, born August 
17, 1863, died at the age of fourteen months, 
being scalded to death by pulling over a cup 
of coffee on her face and breast. 'Robert 
Lee, born August 3, 1861;, married May Mc- 
Guffin and has two children: Joshua Sam- 
uel, born September 27, 1893, and Ralph 
L. , born August 17, 1896. He and his 
brother, Frank Felker, born May 12, 1867, 
carry on the home farm for their mother. 
Olin Madison, born October 27, 1872, was 
paralyzed at the age of four years by being 
given the wrong medicine, the druggist hav- 
ing made a mistake in the prescription. At 
the age of twelve he received another stroke 



126 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and at sixteen could not speak for a time. 
The 3'oungest child died in infancy. 

In 1840, Mr. Thomas brought his family 
to Ogle county, Illinois, where the fall pre- 
vious he had purchased a tract of govern- 
ment land, and here amid pioneer scenes he 
began life anew, carrying on operations as 
an agriculturist until his death, which oc- 
curred March 18, 1S84. In 1S50 he went 
to California and spent two years in the 
gold fields of that state, meeting with fair 
success. He was one of the leading and 
prominent citizens of his community, was 
an ardent supporter of the Democratic party, 
and was held in high regard by all who had 
the pleasure of his acquaintance. He was 
a director of the Ogle County Agricultural 
Society for seven years, and served as its 
president for a time. He was also officially 
connected with the schools of his district 
and in all the relations of life was found 
true and faithful to every trust reposed in 
him. 

On the 1st of May, 1898, a cyclone 
struck the Thomas farm, tearing down the 
barn, but did not injure any of the horses. 
It also took the roof off the house and Mrs. 
Thomas was unaware of what had occurred 
until she looked out and saw the storm dis- 
appearing. The farm consists of two hun- 
dred and fifty acres of valuable land under 
a high state of cultivation, and is most capa- 
bly managed by the sons. Mrs. Thomas, 
who is a most estimable lady, is a member 
of the Methodist Episcopal church, and is a 
sincere and earnest Christian, beloved by 
all who know her. 



GEORGE WASHINGTON CARR, one 
of the foremost and enterprising agri- 
culturists of Rockvale township, is a native 



of Pennsylvania, being born in Fulton 
county, February 10, 1849. He is the son 
of George W. and Margaret (McLean) Carr, 
natives of Center and Huntington counties, 
respectively. The former was born in 
September, 1819, and the latter in 1823. 
Mr. Carr was a farmer in Center county, 
where he resided until his twenty-third 
year, when he removed to Fulton county, 
where he was united in marriage to the 
mother of our subject. In 1884 Mr. and 
Mrs. Carr moved to Ogle county, but being 
dissatisfied with the country, they went still 
further west to Wichita county, Kansas, 
where Mr. Carr purchased three hundred 
acres. Ten children have blessed this mar- 
riage. James married Elizabeth Row, who 
died in 1876. He afterward married Katie 
Angel, and they reside in Ogle county; El- 
len is the wife of James Stevens. Their 
home is in Mt. Morris township; George 
W. is the third child; Erven married Sadie 
Angel, a sister of Mrs. James Carr; Will- 
iam died at the age of thirty, of brain fever, 
the result of typhoid pneumonia. He was 
unmarried; McClure resides in Wichita 
county, Kansas; Mary died when si.\ years 
of age, of diphtheria; Silvester, the eighth 
child, died when eighteen months old; E. 
D. is foreman of an electric car line in 
Omaha, Nebraska, and the youngest child, 
Amanda, is the wife of Furd Avey. Mr. 
Carr died July 18, 1898, and his wife is re- 
siding with Mrs. Avey. 

Our subject bent all his energies toward 
a good education, and helped his father un- 
til his twentieth year, when having finished 
his schooling, he farmed with his father for 
two years, and then came west and settled 
in Ogle county. He rented eighty acres in 
Mt. Morris township for a term of three 
years, and then rented the farm of the Rev- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



127 



erend Robert Hitt, also for three years. 
After the expiration of this lease, he re- 
rented the land in Mt. Morris township for 
a period of four years, which place he left 
for his present property in Rockvale, giving 
in part payment eighty acres in Mt. Morris 
township. 

Mr. Carr's first wife was Miss Ella 
Moats, who was born in Ogle county, and 
who was the daughter of Daniel and Mar- 
garet Moats. By her he had three chil- 
dren: Margaret, born February 17, 1S77, 
died in infancy. Albert, born April 27, 
1878, is living with his maternal grandfa- 
ther. He received his earlier schooling at 
the district school, and is now attending the 
normal school at Valparaiso, Indiana, 
where he is taking a commercial course, and 
where he e.xpects to remain for the next 
two years. In the summer he assists his 
father about the home farm. Maudie, born 
March 4, 18S2, died June 3, 1882, at the 
age of three months. The mother of this 
family died January 17, 1884, of consump- 
tion, in her twenty-eighth year. She was a 
highly respected member of the German 
Baptist church. 

February 8, 1S87, Mr. Carr married 
Miss Martha Alexander, who was born in 
Huntingdon county, Pennsylvania, Septem- 
ber 19, 1867. She was the daughter of 
Randall Alexander, a farmer of Huntingdon 
county, and his wife, Martha Kuntzman, 
and was one of twelve children, namely: 
George W., William, Colter, John, Mary, 
Rosy, Katie, Rachel, Martha, Sadie, Mag- 
gie and Rosa. To Mr. and Mrs. Carr have 
been born two children, namely: Nora, 
born April 9, 1886, and Herbert, born April 
17, 1887. Both are attending the district 
school. Our subject carries on, in addition 
to general farming, the breeding of fancy 



stock. He has at the present writing about 
one hundred and fifty Berkshire pigs, sixty 
head of Durham cattle, and fourteen head 
of Norman draft horses, from which he fre- 
quently sells at handsome prices to the 
Chicago market. 

Mr. Carr is a Republican in politics, and 
stoutly upholds the party to which he be- 
longs. He has served as school director for 
several years with great credit to himself 
and much benefit to the community. He 
is a prominent and representative citizen of 
Rockvale, and is held in high esteem by all 
who know him. 



JAMES H. JUDSON, M. D., who resides 
upon a fine farm in section 14, Buffalo 
township, has been a resident of Ogle coun- 
ty a half century, coming here in May, 
1848, in company with his parents. Bos- 
well and Lois (Perkins) Judson. The fam- 
ily trace their ancestry back to William Jud- 
son, a native of England, who emigrated to 
this country in 1634, settled in Massachu- 
setts, and lived four years near Concord, and 
then moved to Stratford, Connecticut. 
Some of the family later returned to Mas- 
sachusetts, and there Samuel Judson, the 
grandfather of our subject, was born and 
reared. His son, Roswell Judson, was born 
in Massachusetts, October 6, 1795. He 
grew to manhood in his native country and 
then moved to Delaware county. New 
York, where he married Lois Perkins, a na- 
tive of that state. They lived for some 
years on a farm in Delaware county, about 
four miles from Delhi, but with that lauda- 
ble desire to better himself, he determined 
to make a home on the broad prairies of Illi- 
nois. Accordingly, in 1S48, he came to 
Ogle county and entered a tract of three 



128 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



hundred and twenty acres of land in Buf- 
falo township, where our subject now re- 
sides. Erecting a good substantial dwelling, 
he commenced to otherwise improve the 
place, setting out an orchard, shade and 
ornamental trees, and placing the land un- 
der cultivation; in due time he had one of 
the best farms in the county. On that 
place he continued to reside until called 
from this life. He died in 1883, his good 
wife preceding him some nine years, having 
died in 1874. Their remains were laid to 
rest in the cemetery at Polo, where a neat 
and substantial monument has been erected 
to their memory. They were the parents 
of three children, of whom our subject is 
the youngest, the others being Emily M., 
wife of Benjamin Pierce, of Franklin coun- 
ty, Iowa, and Ann C. , wife of John Malone, 
of Dane county, Wisconsin. 

James H. Judson was born near Delhi, 
Delaware county, New York, August 20, 
1839, and was but nine years of age when 
he accompanied his parents to Ogle county, 
which has since been his home. His edu- 
cation was begun in the common schools of 
his native state, and on his arrival here he 
entered the public schools of Ogle county. 
Later he entered Rock River Seminary, at 
Mt. Morris, where his literary education 
was completed. Commencing the study of 
medicine, in 1863 he entered Rush Medical 
College, and finished his medical education 
in the session of 1864 and 1865. Imme- 
diately after taking the degree he enlisted 
as a private in Company D, One Hundred 
and Forty-second Illinois Volunteer Infant- 
ry, for one hundred days. He was almost 
immediately transferred to hospital duty 
and made assistant surgeon, and as such 
served during his term of enlistment. 

Mustered out of service in October, 



1864, Dr. Judson returned to his home and 
commenced the practice of his profession 
in connection with farming. For a number 
of years he gave personal attention to every 
detail of farm work, but finally rented the 
place and gave more of his attention to 
his practice. He still, however, looks after 
his farming interests, and professionally 
visits Polo every afternoon. His farm has 
increased in area until he now owns over 
four hundred acres of as fine land as there 
is in Buffalo township. 

Dr. Judson was married in Ogle county, 
June 5, 1866, to Miss Margaret R. Myerly, 
a native of Maryland, born near Baltimore, 
and daughter of John Myerly, also a native 
of Maryland, who came to Ogle county in 
1844 and engaged in farming. He later 
moved to Powesheik county, Iowa, where 
his last days were spent. To Dr. and Mrs. 
Judson four children have been born. Frank 
E. now resides in Hancock county, Iowa, 
where he is engaged in farming in connec- 
tion with the practice of veterinary surgery. 
Emma L. is the wife of Charles Hildebrand, 
a farmer of Buffalo township. George D. 
is a veterinary surgeon, residing in Polo. 
He was a soldier in the Spanish-American 
war, being a member of Company D, Sixth 
Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He was de- 
tailed as brigade veterinary surgeon, and as 
such served until the close of the war, be- 
ing with his regiment in Porto Rico. When 
the war ended and he received his discharge 
he resumed the practice of his profession at 
Polo. Grace L., the remaining member of 
the family, resides at home. 

Politically Dr. Judson is a stanch Re- 
publican. His first experience was in the 
e.Nciting campaign of i860, resulting in the 
election of Abraham Lincoln, and followed 
by the Civil war. His ballot has ever since 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



129 



been cast for the presidential nominees of 
fiis party. While he is strong in the advo- 
cacy of the principles of his party, he has 
never been an office seeker, although he has 
served in some local official positions. He 
has been- a member of the board of super- 
visors, held the office of road commissioner, 
and for about twenty-five years was on the 
school board, a part of which time he was 
president of the district. He and his wife 
are members of the Methodist Episcopal 
church at Polo. Fraternally he is a mem- 
ber of the Independent Order of Odd Fel- 
lows at Polo, and also a member of the 
Grand Army of the Republic at Polo, being 
surgeon of the post. As a citizen he is pro- 
gressive, ever ready to assist every worth)' 
object. Well known throughout the coun- 
ty, he is held in the highest respect by all. 



JACOB H. PRICE, who resides on sec- 
tion 13, Buffalo township, is a well 
known farmer and stock-raiser, and has the 
reputation of being one of the best farmers 
in the township, which is evident from the 
neat appearance of his place. He is a na- 
tive of Ogle county, and was born in Pine 
Greek township, June 26, 1S54. His father, 
John W. Price, was born in Berkeley county, 
West Virginia, in 1824. The family are of 
W'elch descent, and settled in Pennsylvania, 
from which state John Price, the grand- 
father of our subject, removed to Berkeley 
county, West Virginia. After residing in 
that county for some years, he removed 
with his family to Ogle county, Illinois, and 
took up a claim in Pine Creek township, 
where he opened up a farm and spent the 
last years of his life. 

John W. Price came with his father to 
Ogle county. He was then in his sixteenth 

14 



year, strong and active, and assisted in the 
work of transforming the place from its na- 
tive wilderness to a most productive farm. 
His primary education was received in 
the schools of his native state, but on 
coming to this county he entered Rock River 
Seminary at Mt. Morris, completing his 
school life in that institution. He then en- 
gaged in teaching and was therefore one of 
the pioneer teachers in the county. He 
married Nancy Rowland, a native of Jeffer- 
son township. West Virginia, and a daugh- 
ter of Henry Rowland, another one of the 
early settlers of the county. Purchasing a 
farm of two hundred acres in Pine Creek 
township, he commencSd its cultivation and 
there reared his family. On reaching his 
three score years and ten he was called to 
his reward, his death occurring June 7, 
1S94. His wife survived him some two 
years, passing away November 8, 1895. 
They were both devout members of the 
German Baptist church and active work- 
ers in the same. Their family comprised 
eight children. Clara E. is now the wife 
of O. B. Ringer, of Pine Creek township. 
Jacob H. is second in order of birth. L. C. 
is now a resident of Marshall county, Iowa. 
Hattie E. is the wife of John Heckman, a 
minister of the Brethren church, residing in 
Buffalo township. Oliver L. is engaged in 
the mercantile business in Oregon, Illinois. 
Gussie is the wile of William Lampin, a 
farmer of Pine Creek township. Collin C. 
is also a farmer of Pine Creek township, and 
a minister of the Brethren church. Henry 
died when one year old. 

On his father's farm in Pine Creek town- 
ship, Jacob H. Price grew to manhood, and 
in the district school of the neighborhood 
received his education. He remained under 
the parental roof until after he attained his 



I30 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



majority, assisting:; in the work of the home 
farm. He then rented a farm and began 
life for himself. A little later he purchased 
one hundred acres of his present farm, 
which was then partially improved, and at 
once commenced its further improvement. 
Subsequently he purchased sixty acres more, 
giving him a fine farm of one hundred and 
sixty acres. He has lately erected a large 
and substantial residence with all the mod- 
ern improvements, including furnace heat , 
bath rooms, hot and cold water throughout 
the house. It is one of the best country 
residences in the county. His barn, gran- 
aries, and other outbuildings are also of the 
best, thus showing him to be a very practi- 
cal man in all things, one who believes that 
a farmer should enjoy some of the blessings 
of this life as well as others. 

Mr. Price was married in Ogle county, 
February 24, 1881, to Miss Lillie M. Spick- 
ler, a native of Washington county, Mary- 
land, who came to Ogle county in infancy 
with her parents. Her father, C. B. Spick- 
ler, was also born in Washington county, 
Maryland, in 1830. He was twice mar- 
ried, his first wife dying in Maryland, leav- 
ing one daughter, Maggie, now the wife of 
Daniel Stauffer, a farmer of Pine Creek 
township. He later married Miss Ellen 
Newcomer, a native of Maryland, and Mrs. 
Price is second in their family of four chil- 
dren. The others are Emma, residing with 
her parents; Henry, a minister in the Ger- 
man Baptist church; and Eddie, a student 
at Polo. To Mr. and Mrs. Price one daugh- 
ter has been born — Rhoda Ellen, born 
October 8, 1898. 

Mr. Price was reared in the faith of the 
German Baptist church, and has adhered to 
its teachings, believing them to be in con- 
formity with the sacred scriptures. He 



holds membership with the church in Pine 
Creek township, and has for some years 
been a deacon in the same. His wife is also 
a member of the same church. 

In addition to general farming, Mr. Price 
has made a specialty for some years of rais- 
ing stock for the markets, annually feeding 
and shipping from one to six car loads of 
cattle and about three car loads of hogs. In 
this branch of his business he has been quite 
successful. 

CHARLES HIRAM BETEBENNER, of 
Oregon, Illinois, a descendant of one 
of the old families of Ogle county, was 
born in Pine Creek township, March 9, 
1851, and is the son of Samuel and Re- 
becca (Strauss) Betebenner, and the grand- 
son of John Betebenner, a native of Mar}'- 
land of German ancestry. Samuel Bete- 
benner was born December 15, 1805, in 
Washington county, Maryland, where his 
youth and early manhood were spent. He 
was united in marriage September 15, 1831, 
to Rebecca Strauss, of Hagerstown, Mary- 
land. While reared to farm work, at the 
age of twenty-two he apprenticed himself 
to a plasterer, and in two years' time he had 
become so proficient at the trade that he 
was recognized as a journeyman. He had 
learned to play the fife, and play it well, 
and when General LaFayette visited this 
country, in 1825, he had the high honor of 
playing the fife at a reception given to the 
noble French patriot when he passed 
through Frederick City, Maryland. In 
1 86 1, though too old to be admitted into 
the army of the Union, yet he was young 
enough to play the fife and its shrill notes 
were heard at Polo, Illinois, when the 
muster roll was open to help raise the P'if- 
teenth Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



131 



In 1S42, havinf^ heard so much of the 
beauty and richness of the Rock river coun- 
try, Samuel Betebenner concluded to visit 
it. He spent the summer in Ogle county, 
and was so much pleased with the country 
that he concluded to locate here and made 
some preparations to that end, after which 
he returned to Maryland. On the 15th of 
May, 1844, with his wife and three children, 
he started for his new home, making the jour- 
ney overland with teams, being seven weeks 
on the road. On the way they endured 
many hardships, but were never discour- 
aged. Arriving here Mr. Betebenner took 
up a claim in Pine Creek township of three 
hundred and twenty acres, which he im- 
mediately began to improve. A part of 
this tract he owned through life, selling the 
remainder to his son John. In addition to 
this tract, he later purchased forty acres in 
Mt. Morris township. His trade was of 
great assistance to him in the new country 
and naturally aided him in supplying his 
family wants and advancing his farm inter- 
ests. Deer and other wild game were in 
abundance when he began to build up a new 
home and these luxuries were almost daily 
served at his table. He was among the 
workmen who plastered the first state house 
at Springfield. What a record was his life, 
connecting as it did two generations! His 
youth was spent with the soldiers of the 
Revolution and the compatriots of Wash- 
ington, and his eyes greeted the great La- 
Fayette, and the clear notes of his fife 
resounded in his ears. He lived to see and 
help build up a new civilization in the great 
west and become one of its factors. He set 
a noble example to the rising generations, 
and may they emulate his virtues. He de- 
parted this life December 12, 1895, in his 
ninetieth year, and the funeral services took 



place at the opera-house in Oregon the fol- 
lowing Sunday. 

Rebecca (Strauss) Betebenner was the 
daughter of Hiram and Christy A. (Glos- 
brenner) Strauss, and was born in Hagers- 
town, Maryland, July 4, 1S08. Her father 
was by profession a physician. Both of her 
parents lived and died in Maryland. Sam- 
uel and Rebecca Betebenner were the par- 
ents of eight children. Thomas H. is a 
farmer and land speculator residing in Car- 
thage, Missouri. Robert V. resides in Cal 
ifornia, where he is engaged in contracting 
and building. Samuel C, a mason by 
trade, resides in Polo, Illinois. Narcissa, 
now the wife of Benjamin Hanna, is living 
in Polo. Ella, wife of Abner Newcomer, is 
living near Polo. John resides on the old 
homestead. Eliza, who married Thomas 
Emmert, now lives in Tarkio, Missouri. 
The subject of this sketch completes the 
family. Mrs. Rebecca Betebenner survives 
her husband, and resides at Polo, Illinois, 
patiently waiting the day when she, too, shall 
be called up higher. 

Charles H. Betebenner was reared on 
the home farm, and in the home school re- 
ceived his primar}" education. After spend- 
ing some time in Rock River Seminary, he 
entered Beloit College, where he spent two 
seasons in study. Later he engaged in 
merchandizing at Dysart, Iowa, for about 
a year and a half, and then returned to 
Oregon and clerked for Artz & Ray for four 
years. He then engaged in the mail serv- 
ice, running from Chicago to Dubuque, 
Iowa. This took up about four years. 
Later he was nominated on the Independ- 
ent ticket for sheriff of Ogle county, and 
was elected by twenty-six majority, running 
against John Bailey, the regular Republican 
nominee. This was one of the hottest cam- 



132 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



paigns in the history of Ogle county. After 
his term of four years he engaged in tile 
manufacturing and contracting, as a mem- 
ber of the firm of Sammis & Co. 

Mr. Betebenner was married March 20, 
1879, at Polo, Illinois, to Miss Inez Sam- 
mis, daughter of C. W. & Emily A. (Helmj 
Sammis. She was born LaSalle, Illinois, 
but came with her parents to Ogle county 
when she was a child. Her parents were 
natives of New York, coming to Illinois in 
1 84 1, locating at what was then known as 
Buffalo Grove, LaSalle county. They had 
six children — Fred H., Inez, Grace, J. 
Uriah, E. Payson and Stata. Grace mar- 
ried Seward Woodruff, and they are living 
in Oregon. Stata is the wife of A. F. 
Matthews, of Chicago. Mr. and Mrs. Bet- 
ebenner are the parents of three children — 
E. Payson, Ruth W. and Charles Sammis. 
E. Payson died in 1883. 

Mr. and Mrs. Betebenner attend the 
Presbyterian church. In politics he is a 
Democrat. PVaternally he is a member 
of the Masons and the Independent Or- 
der of Odd Fellows. In 1898 he was ap- 
pointed superintendent of the Ogle county 
almshouse and is now in charge of that in- 
stitution. 



JAMES DONALDSON, an honored pio- 
neer and highly respected citizen of 
Ogle county, has resided here since Ma}-, 
1839, and for many years was prominently 
and actively identified with its agricultural 
interests. He bore his part in the early 
development and prosperity of this region, 
but is now living retired upon his farm on 
section \2, Eagle Point townsliip, only 
three miles northwest of Polo. 

A native of New York, Mr, Donaldson 



was born on the shores of Lake Champlain, 
Washington county, January 4, i82r, and 
is a son of William Donaldson, who was 
born in Northumberland county, England, 
May 5, 1795, of Scotch ancestry, and there 
grew to manhood. There he was also 
married to Miss Isabella McDonald, who 
was born at Berwick on the Tweed, Eng- 
land, of Scotch ancestry. Being reared on 
a farm, the father early became familiar 
with all the duties which fall to the lot of 
the agriculturist, and engaged in farm work 
in his native land until 1820, when he emi- 
grated to America and first located in 
Washington county, New York, where he 
continued to engage in agricultural pursuits 
for four years, during which time two of his 
children were born. His next home was at 
Little York, Ontario, Canada, and there he 
engaged in his chosen occupation for fifteen 
years. Coming to Ogle county, Illinois, in 
1839, he bought a claim of three hundred 
and twenty acres in what is now Eagle 
Point township, forty acres of which had 
been placed under cultix'ation and a log 
house erected thereon. In that primitive 
residence the family lived while the farm 
was being developed and improved. Later 
a good frame house was built, also a good barn 
and outbuildings, and an orchard set out. 
The father was one of the most enterprising 
and successful early farmers, and having 
prospered in his life work, he was at length 
able to lay aside all business cares and 
spend his last years in ease and retirement. 
He sold the farm to his youngest son, and 
upon a part of the place erected a residence 
where he li\ed imtil called from this life in 
March, 1870, at the age of seventy-five 
3'ears. His wife survived him for some 
time, passing away in November, 1884, and 
both were buried in Fairmont cemetery, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



where a substantial monument marks their 
last resting place. 

In the family of this worthy couple were 
nine children, four sons and five daughters, 
all of whom reached years of maturity. 
Walter, the eldest, was born in England 
and spent his last days in Brookville town- 
ship. Ogle county; James, our subject, is 
the next in order of birth; John is now liv- 
ing retired in Morengo, Illinois; Margaret is 
the wife of John S. Miller, an old settler 
and substantial farmer of Eagle Point town- 
ship. Ogle county; Isabella is the wife of 
Patterson Pringle, of Morengo; ^^^illiam 
was a resident of Ogle county, but is now 
deceased; Elizabeth is the wife of Eber 
Smith, of Buffalo township, thiscounty;Jane 
is the wife of Alexander Havvver, of Ded- 
ham, Carroll county, Iowa; and Flora W. 
is the wife of John Bruce, of Dedham, 
Iowa. 

James Donaldson, of this review, was 
about eighteen years of age when he accom- 
panied the farnih- on their removal to Ogle 
county, and he was of great assistance to 
his father in opening up and developing 
the farm from wild land. When his serv- 
ices were not needed at home he would 
work for others at farm labor. He and his 
brother ^^'alter were experts in the use of 
the ax and in the groves of this region were 
employed in getting out the timbers for 
many of the houses and barns of the early 
settlers. Until twenty-five years of age he 
continued to aid in the operation of the 
home farm and then located upon a one- 
hundred-acre tract in Eagle Point township 
which his father gave him. To its improve- 
ment and cultivation he devoted his atten- 
tion with most gratifying results and made 
his home thereon for a quarter of a century, 
during which time he bought more land ad- 



joining, making a valuable tract of four 
hundred and eighteen acres. Later he 
built on the farm where he now resides and 
now has one of the best improved farms of 
the township. There is a large and sub- 
stantial residence ami good outbuildings. 
Mr. Donaldson met with most excellent suc- 
cess in his farming operations but for the 
past ten years has lived retired, enjoying a 
well earned rest. 

On the 31st of May, 1S4S, was cele- 
brated the marriage of Mr. Donaldson and 
Miss Locada J. Seavey, who was born in 
Sandwich, New Hampshire, January 8, 
I S3 1. Her father, Joshua Seavey, was a 
native of Rye Beach, the same state, and 
there grew to manhood and married Miss 
Betsy Webster, a cousin of the great states- 
man, Daniel Webster. In 1840 Mr. Seavey 
came to Illinois and settled near Dixon, in 
Lee county, where Mrs. Donaldson was 
reared. To our subject and his wife were 
born nine children, namely: Elizabeth 
Isabel, who died at the age of sixteen years; 
Mary Josephine, who died at the age of 
fourteen; Walter Atwood, who died at the 
age of fifteen; John James, who died at the 
age of six; Alice, who married M. P. Strall 
and lived in Iowa, where she died in Sep- 
tember, 1S91, leaving ten children; Emma 
Frances, who married Zelus L. Shafer and 
also lived in Iowa, where she died in Octo- 
ber, 1891, leaving an infant daughter, Emma 
Frances, who now lives with our subject and 
is attending the home school; William, who 
is married, and he and his brother carry on 
the home farm; Gertie, wife of Nelson B. 
Sweet, a farmer of Eagle Point township; 
and Sherman B., who owns and operates a 
farm in Buffalo township, this count}'. 
There are now fourteen grandchildren and 
two great-grandchildren. On the 31st of 



134 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



May, 189S, Mr. and Mrs. Donaldson cele- 
brated their golden wedding, at which time 
all of their living children and grandchildren 
in this vicinity were present, and a most 
enjoyable time was passed. 

Politically, Mr. Donaldson is a Jeffer- 
sonian Democrat, having cast his first presi- 
nential ballot for James K. Polk in 1844, 
and for each succeeding candidate of his 
party but two. In 1896 he supported 
Palmer and Buckner on the gold Demo- 
cratic ticket. He has never desired office, 
preferring to give his attention to his own 
interests. For si.xty years he has been a 
resident of Ogle county and has watched 
with interest almost its entire growth and 
development. He has seen the wolves and 
deer disappear, town and villages spring up, 
the railroads and telegraphs introduced, and 
the wild land transformed into fine farms 
and good homes. He has borne his part in 
the work, and has ever been recognized as 
one of the valued and useful citizens of his 
community, one honored and respected by 
all who know him. 



JAMES WESLEY CARR, a skillful and 
thorough farmer residing on section 19, 
Rockvale township, is a native of Pennsyl- 
vania, born in Fulton county, September 4, 
1845, and is a representative of an old fam- 
ily of that state. His grandfather, George 
Carr, was probably a native of Center coun- 
ty, that state, as it was there he made his 
home from early life, his time and attention 
being devoted to agricultural pursuits. He 
married Louise Sanders and to them were 
born three children: Samuel, a laborer, 
resided in Blair county, Pennsylvania, until 
his death in 1846; George \\'. , our subject's 
father; and William, a carpenter, who was 



residing in Fulton county, Illinois, at the 
time of his death. 

George W. 'Carr was born in Center 
county, Pennsylvania, and remained there 
until he attained the age of twenty-two, at- 
tending the common schools during the 
winter months and aiding his father in the 
work of the farm through the summer sea- 
son. On leaving home he came to Fulton 
county, Pennsylvania, where he continued 
to engage in the occupation to which he had 
been reared. He wedded Miss Margaret 
McLean, who was born in Huntingdon 
county, Pennsylvania, in 1823, a daughter 
of Eli McLean, and to them were born 
eleven children, of whom our subject is the 
eldest. Ella, the ne.xt in order of birth, is 
now the wife of James.H. Stevens, a farmer 
of Mt. Morris township. Ogle county; George 
W. is represented on another page of this 
work; John Ervin married Sarah Angel and 
lives in Rockvale township. Ogle county; 
William died at the age of thirty-eight years; 
McClure married Annie Beard and lives in 
Wichita county, Kansas; Elliot Duffield 
married, and is foreman for an elec- 
tric line at Omaha, Nebraska; Mary Jane 
died at the age of five years; Sylvester died 
at the age of two years; and Amanda and 
Ferdinand Avery, of Rockvale township, 
Ogle county. 

During his boyhood and youth James 
W. Carr pursued his studies in the district 
schools near the old home farm in Fulton 
county, and aided in the labors of the fields. 
After leaving school at the age of nineteen, 
he devoted his entire time to the work of 
the farm until attaining his majority. Dur- 
ing the following two years he was employed 
by Reuben Faust in Franklin county, Penn- 
sylvania. He then came west and settled 
in Mt. Morris township. Ogle county, lUi- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



135 



nois, where he worked by the month for a 
year, but in 1870 located upon a farm of 
one hundred and fifty acres, which he rented 
for three years. The following three years 
were spent on Mr. Phelps' farm of two hun- 
dred and seventy-nine acres, and for the 
same length of time he lived on the David 
Gloss farm of one hundred and sixty acres. 
In 1876 he bought one hundred and eight 
acres, lying partly in Mt. Morris and partly in 
Rockvale townships. As his financial re- 
sources have increased he has kept adding 
to his property, purchasing eighty acres in 

1878, and since then two tracts of forty 
acres, one of which was timber land, and 
in 1894 purchased one hundred and thirty 
acres in Mt. Morris township, making three 
hundred and ninety-eight acres in all. This 
property he has placed under a high state 
of cultivation and improved until it is now 
one of the best farms in the community. 

On the 15th of November, 186S, Mr. 
Carr was united in marriage with Miss Liz- 
zie Rowe, a daughter of Henry Rowe, of 
Franklin county, Pennsylvania. She was 
born in Maryland, in 1840, and died Octo- 
ber 10, 1877. Four children were born of 
that union: Alice, born July 10, 1869, 
died September 4, 1S89, from dropsy 
brought on by catching cold while attend- 
ing college. Charlie, born October 6, 1871, 
was married, in June, 1894, to Belle Good- 
rich, a daughter of George and Fidelia 
Goodrich, and they now have one child, 
Charlie Guy, born in March, 1898. Char- 
lotte, born November 4, 1S73, died with 
measles in April, 1877. Harvey, born Sep- 
tember 4, 1876, was educated in the district 
schools and Mount Morris College, and now 
assists his father on the farm. 

Mr. Carr was again married, March 4, 

1879, his second union being with Miss 



Katie S. Angel, who was born in Maryland, 
October 19, 1855, and is the second child 
in the family of Uriah and Mahala (Koontz) 
Angel, who brought their family to Illinois 
in 1878. By the second marriage six chil- 
dren have been born, namely: Orville B. , 
born December 23, 1879, died February 20, 
1880; Elmer B., born July 20, 1881, died 
January 29, 18S2; Mina Pearl, born Sep- 
tember 12, 1883, is at present attending the 
home school; Wilbur J., born September 
12, 1885, died of diphtheria September 19, 
1S94; Alva Harrison, born February 13, 
1887, died August 25, 18S9; and Vernie 
May, born May 2, 1890, is attending the 
district school. The wife and mother is a 
consistent member of the Lutheran church. 
The Republican party always finds in 
Mr. Carr a stanch supporter of its princi- 
ples, but he has never cared for the honors 
or emoluments of public office, preferring to 
devote his entire time and attention to his 
business interests. He has, however, served 
as school director for three years. On com- 
ing to Ogle county he had but one hundred 
and ninety dollars, and the success that he 
has achieved in life has been due to his own 
industry and well-directed efforts. 



SQUIRE ROLFE.— Prominent among 
the successful and energetic farmers of 
Marion township may be found the subject 
of this biographical notice, whose home is 
pleasantly located on section 15, and who 
is considered one of the most industrious 
and worthy citizens of Ogle county. Be- 
sides his home farm of one hundred and 
sixty acres, he owns another valuable place 
of one hundred and thirty acres in the same 
township, known as the old Blye homestead. 



i.s6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



This he purchased in 1895, has made some 
substantial improvements upon it, and now 
has two valuable and desirable farms. 

Mr. Rolfe was born in Tompkins coun- 
ty, New York, September 21, 1829, and is 
a son of Chester I\olfe, a nati\'e of New Jer- 
sey, and a grandson of Samuel Rolfe, also 
a native of New Jersey and a pioneer settler 
of Tompkins county, New York, where the 
father grew to manhood. There he mar- 
ried Matilda Kirkendall, a native of New 
York, and in Tompkins county they made 
their home throughout the remainder of 
their lives. He died in Rockford, Illinois, 
at the home of his son, Henry, while on a 
visit to his son, but his remains were taken 
back to New York and interred by the side 
of his wife, who had passed away several 
3ears previously. Their family consisted 
of five sons and four daughters, all of whom 
grew to man and womanhood, but only our 
subject and three sisters are now living. 
Henry came west and located in Ogle coun- 
ty, but later removed to Rockford, where 
he spent his last 3'ears. Levi, the oldest 
son, was a pioneer of \\'aukesha county, 
Wisconsin, where he opened up a farm and 
continued to live until his death. Edgar 
and Frank both died on the old homestead 
in New York in early manhood. 

Squire Rolfe obtained a good common- 
school education and remained under the 
parental roof until eighteen years of age, 
when he went to Enfield Center, New York, 
to learn the carriagemaker's trade, serving 
a three-years' apprenticeship. For a year 
or two he worked as a journejinan, but in 
the fall of 1S54 he and his brother Henry 
came to Illinois and settled in Ogle coun- 
ty, where he continued to follow his trade 
for four j'ears. The brothers purchased 
eighty acres of land in Marion township, in 



1855, which they at once commenced to im- 
prove and cultivate, it being operated by 
Henry for two or three years, when he went 
to California. During the war Squire Rolfe 
engaged in carriage making and also had 
charge of the farm, and when his brother 
returned they carried it on together for a 
few years. They finally sold and bought a 
farm of three hundred and twenty acres in 
Scott township, to the further development 
and cultivation of which they devoted their 
time and attention for five years. They 
erected thereon a good house and barn and 
made many other useful and valuable im- 
provements. Selling out at the end of that 
time Squire Rolfe purchased his present 
home farm in 1873, and has converted it 
into one of the best and most attractive 
places in Marion township. In connection 
with general farming he is also interested in 
breeding and dealing in a good grade of 
horses, cattle and hogs. 

On the I ith of March, 1874, in Marion 
township, Mr. Rolfe was united in marriage 
with Miss Mary A. Comstock, daughter of Hi- 
ram and Jane (Lamphier) Comstock. She is 
anative of Herkimer county, New York, born 
November 22, 1847, and came west with 
her step-father, Nathan Bly, in 1854, and 
located in that township, where she was 
principally reared and educated. Mr. Rolfe 
cast his first presidential ballot for General 
\\'infield Scott, four years later supported 
John C. Fremont, and for many years was 
identified with the Republican party, but in 
1896 supported the Democratic nominee. 
For forty-four years he has been identified 
with the interests of this county, and in all 
enterprises tending to benefit the people of 
the community, morally, socially or finan- 
cially, he has been an earnest and cheerful 
worker, and now while traveling down the 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



137 



sunset hill of life he has reason to be com- 
forted that his 3'ears and labors have not 
been in vain. 



DAVID NEWCOMER, M. D. , for more 
than a quarter of acentur}' has been a 
resident of Mount Morris, where he has been 
actively engaged in the practice of his pro- 
fession. He is a native of Franklin county, 
Pennsylvania, born near Greencastle, July 
26, 1830, and is the son of Daniel and Bar- 
bara (Stoner) Newcomer, both of whom 
were natives of Maryland, the former born 
in November, 1800, near Hagerstown, Wash- 
ington county, and the latter in June, iSoi, 
near Lightersburg, inthe samecounty. Dan- 
iel Newcomer was the son of Peter New- 
comer, also a native of Maryland and a farm- 
er and miller by occupation. On both the 
paternal and maternal sides the family trace 
their ancestr}' to Switzerland. 

At the age of twenty-four Daniel New- 
comer inarried Barbara Stoner, and they 
became the parents of seven children, as 
follows: Elizabeth, born in 1822, married 
John Brandt and they had seven children. 
They removed to this county at an early 
day, but both are now deceased. John, 
born in 1S26, married Catherine Middour, 
and they had five children, two of whom are 
living. He died October 2, 1872, but his 
widow is yet living and makes her home in 
Chicago. Cyrus B., born in 1828, married 
Elizabeth Haws, and to them were born 
seven children. He died in 1896, but his 
widow is yet living in Mount Morris town- 
ship. David, next in order of birth, is the 
subject of this sketch. Daniel W. , born in 
1832, married Margaret Walter, and to 
them were born five children. They now 

15 



reside in Polo, where he is living a retired 
life. Martin S., born in 1838, married 
Anna C. Funk, and si.x children were born 
of this union. His wife dying, he later 
married Miss Bergstrum. They now reside 
in Decatur, Illinois. He is a minister of the 
Church of God. Barbara, born in 1835, 
married Abram Miller, and they became the 
parents of eleven children. Mr. Miller is 
deceased, and his widow now resides near 
Freeport. Illinois, 

Shortly after his marriage, Daniel New- 
comer moved to Franklin county, Pennsyl- 
vania, where he engaged in agricultural pur- 
suits, reared his family, and there continued 
to reside until 1S65, when he came to Ogle 
county and located in Buffalo township, 
where the remainder of his life was passed. 
He died in 1875, his wife preceding him 
some years, dying in 1873. In early life he 
was an old two line Whig, with which party 
he continued to act until it ceased to e.xist. 
Having a dislike for slavery, he naturally be- 
came a Republican on the organization of 
that party. He lived to see slavery abol- 
ished and the union of states restored. With 
the Republican party he continued to affil- 
iate until his death. Religiously, he was 
identified with the River Brethren, as was 
also his wife. He was a man of deep re- 
ligious convictions and endeavored to walk 
in the footsteps of the Master. 

The subject of this sketch remained 
at home until he attained his majority. 
His primary education was obtained in the 
common schools of the neighborhood, which 
was supplemented by attending Shady Grove 
Academy, in Perry county, Pennsylvania, 
where he remained one year. He then en- 
gaged in farming, continuing in that line for 
three years. At the age of twenty-four he 
entered the office of Dr. James Brotherton, 



i38 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, and read 
medicine under iiis instruction for a time, 
and later entered Jefferson Medical College, 
Philadelphia, taking the regular course, and 
graduating therefrom in 1859. On receiv- 
ing his diploma, he went to Upton, in his 
native state, opened an office and com- 
menced the practice of his profession. He 
was building up a good practice at that 
place when the war for the union com- 
menced. Offering his services to his coun- 
try, he was commissioned assistant surgeon 
of the Twenty-sixth Regiment Pennsylvania 
Volunteer Infantry, and immediately went 
to the front. His service began in May, 
1862, being mustered in at Camp Curtin, 
near Harrisburg. From Camp Curtin he 
was sent to St. Joseph hospital, a military 
hospital in Philadelphia, where he remained 
two months, and then joined the Army of 
the Potomac under McClellan, taking part in 
the campaign in the Chickahominy valley, 
being in the seven^days' fight in the Wilder- 
ness. While in this campaign he was taken 
quite sick and resigned his commission. Re- 
turning home he resumed his practice as 
soon as his health would admit. He re- 
mained at home about a year and a half 
and again went into the service as acting 
assistant surgeon, being stationed at Bever- 
ly hospital, in New Jersey, where he re- 
mained until about the close of the war, 
when he again returned to Upton. From 
that place he later removed to Martinsburg, 
West Virginia, where he remained four and 
a half years, in the meantime building up a 
fair practice. In March, 1871, he came to 
Mt. Morris, and for twenty-eight years has 
attended to the ills of the people of that 
city and vicinity, meeting with very grati- 
fying success. 

On the 1 8th of November, 1851, Dr. 



Newcomer was united in marriage with Miss 
Mary Shelley Funk, a native of Franklin 
county, Pennsylvania, born April 30, 1S31, 
and the daughter of Jacob and Catherine 
(Shelley) Funk, both of whom were also 
natives of Pennsylvania, the former born in 
1803, and the latter in 1806. By occupa- 
tion Jacob Funk was a farmer. He never 
came west, but died in his native state 
February 6, 1850. His wife survived him 
many years, dying March 27, 1891. They 
were the parents of twelve children — Henry, 
Elizabeth, Rebecca, David, Mary, Christian, 
Cyrus, Susan, Joseph, Annie C. , Martin S. 
and Jacob. Catherine Funk was the daugh- 
ter of Christian and Madeline (Hershey) 
Shelley, both natives of Pennsylvania, and 
both born in 1769. 

To Dr. and Mrs. Newcomer si.x children 
were born, two of whom died in infancy. 
The living are; (i) Catherine, born May 30, 
1855, married N. W. Sollenberger, and they 
have three children — Harry C, Hugh Hale 
and Earl. Mr. Sollenberger is engaged in 
farming in North Dakota. (2) Barbara 
Alice, born June 18, 1856, married Rev. J. 
W. Thomas, a minister of the general synod 
of the Lutheran church, recently located at 
Lanark, but now residing at Mt. Morris. 
(3) David W., born November 20, 1858, 
married Nellie McFadden, and they have 
six children — Henry, Edward, David, Frank, 
Minnie and Earl. They reside in Kansas 
City, Missouri, where he is engaged in the 
undertaking and livery business. (4) H. C, 
born April 30, 1861, married Rebecca 
Rosier, and they have two children — Sidney 
and Francis. They reside in Memphis, 
Tennessee, where he has charge of an engin- 
eering corps. He is a graduate of \\'est 
Point, in the class of 1886, graduating at 
the head of his class. He holds the com- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



139 



mission of captain in the regular army, but 
is now attached to the engineering corps. 

Politically Dr. Newcomer is a Republic- 
an, but his professional duties have always 
been such as to prevent him from taking a 
very active part in political affairs. While 
preferring to give his time to his profession 
he served as president of the village board 
in a commendable manner. For years he 
has been connected with the Ogle County 
Medical Society, and for several years was 
its president. Fraternally he is a member 
of the Masonic Order, Knights of Pythias, 
and John Smith Post, G. A. R., of Mt. 
Morris. He is a member of the Lutheran 
church, and for two years served as deacon. 
He is very popular in the county of his 
adoption, not only as a physician, but as 
a citizen, and his friends are numerous in- 
deed. 



JAMES MYERS is one of the repre- 
sentative pioneers and honored citizens 
of Ogle county, where he first located in 
the spring of 1S37. For many years he 
was actively identified with the agricultural 
interests of this section of the state, but 
is now living retired in the village of Leaf 
River, enjoying the rest which should al- 
ways follow a long and busy career. 

Mr. Myers is a native of Maryland, 
born in Washington county, July 22, 1829, 
and is a son of Jacob Muers, whose birth 
occurred in the same state in 1800. On 
reaching manhood the latter married Miss 
Elizabeth Her, also a native of Maryland. 
The father, who was a farmer by occupa- 
tion, emigrated to Illinois in 1837, driving 
to Wheeling, West Virginia, and thence 
proceeding down the Ohio and up the Mis- 
sissippi and Illinois rivers to Peru, this 



state. From that place he drove across 
the country to Ogle county and in Leaf 
River township laid claim to four hundred 
and twenty-four acres, which he later en- 
tered from the government. At that time 
the country was all wild and unimproved, 
no roads constructed or bridges built. Mr. 
Myers was compelled to go to Peru to mill, 
and would haul part of his grain and pork 
to Chicago, where he bought most of his 
supplies, while at times he did his market- 
ing at Mt. Carroll and Grand Detour. In 
crossing sloughs his wagon would often 
stick fast in the mud and he was obliged to 
take the load off and carry it to firmer 
ground. On hills or elevations he put up 
stakes as land marks to guide him across 
the open prairies. He had two plows with 
wooden moll board, and his harrows had 
wooden teeth, and with these rude imple- 
ments he managed, however, to break and 
cultivate his place. He located first in 
Maryland township, where he built a log 
house with a mud and stick chimney, but 
after living there two or three years he 
elected a more substantial residence of 
hewed logs upon his claim in Leaf River 
township. He also built a separate kitchen 
and good outbuildings, which in later years 
were replaced b}' modern frame structures. 
Upon his farm he passed away in the 
spring of 1876 at the age of seventy-six 
years, and his wife died in 1892, at the age 
of eighty-two. 

Fifteen children were born to this worthy 
couple, and with the exception of one all 
reached man and womanhood, and five 
sons and five daughters are now living. 
William, who married and settled in Winne- 
bago county, Illinois, is now deceased; 
James is the second eldest son; Henry is a 
farmer of Linn county, Iowa; Jacob i? a 



140 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



farmer of Stephenson count}-, Illinois; and 
John and David are both farmers in Ogle 
county. The sisters are Amanda, wife of 
Silas Snyder, both now deceased; Mary, 
deceased wife of John Piper; Susan, wife of 
John L. Smith; Adaline, wife of Joseph 
Kendall, a farmer of Ogle county; Sarah, 
wife of Joseph Folder, of Ogle county; 
Catherine, wife of Jacob Shriver, of Ogle 
county; and Martha, wife of George Grove, 
of Ogle county. 

James Myers was a lad of eight years 
when he came with the family to Ogle 
county, and here he grew to manhood, 
assisting in opening up and developing the 
home farm. After attaining his majority he 
operated the place for four years, and then 
bought eighty acres of land in Ridott town- 
ship, Stephenson county, which he con- 
verted into a fine farm, it being one of the 
best improved places in the township. He 
erected thereon a commodious frame resi- 
dence, a good barn, granary and other out- 
buildings, and placed the land under a high 
state of cultivation. For twenty-four years 
he was actively and successfully engaged in 
farming upon that place, but now rents the 
farm and lives retired in Leaf River, where 
he bought a lot and built a comfortable 
residence. 

At Freeport, Illinois, September 30, 
1857, Mr. Myers was united in marriage with 
Miss Caroline Matilda Allen, who was born 
in Luzerne county, Pennsylvania, April 12, 
1838. Her parents, Peter and Sarah Allen, 
also natives of that county, came to Illinois 
in 1854, and bought an improved farm in 
Ogle county, where they spent their last 
years. 

On national issues, Mr. Myers is a sup- 
porter of the Democratic party, but at local 
elections he votes independently, supporting 



the man whom he believes best qualified 
to fill the ofSce. He and his wife are 
earnest and faithful members of the Christian 
church, assisted in its organization, and he 
has served as deacon and trustee since it 
was started, while Mrs. Myers gave the lot, 
adjoining their own home, on which the 
church was built. Their many sterling 
traits of character have endeared them to 
all, and it is sate to say that no couple in 
the community have more or warmer friends 
than Mr. and Mrs. Myers. 



AMOS A. SHEFFIELD, deceased, was 
a well-known farmer of Grand Detour 
township, and the proprietor of the Sheffield 
House, in the village of Grand Detour. He 
was born September 5, 1S28, in North 
Stonington, Connecticut, and was the son 
of Amos and Nancy ( Baldwin) Sheffield, both 
of whom were also natives of the Nutmeg 
state. In his native state he remained until 
he was seventeen years old, when he ac- 
companied his parents to Otsego county. 
New York, where they made a permanent 
home. His father was a wheelwright by 
trade, and followed that occupation almost 
exclusively in Connecticut, but on his re- 
moval to New York he engaged in fanning, 
only occasionally working at his trade. 
His last days were spent in Otsego county, 
his death occurring many years ago. 

In his native state our subject received 
a limited education, but his native shrewd- 
ness served him instead of the thorough 
school training that he would have been 
pleased to have had. He remained at home 
and assisted his father until after attaining 
his majority. His marriage was celebrated 
October 9, 1852, when Miss Elizabeth Sco- 
field became his wife. She was born in 




AMOS A. SHEFFIELD. 




MRS. A. A. SHEFFIELD. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



'45 



Otsego county, New York, March 5, 1833, making it the commodious house as it now 
and is the daughter of Hezekiah and Vashti exists. \Mien the repairs on the house 
(Cole) Scofield, both of whom were natives were all completed, it was opened as a hotel, 
of New York. Before leaving New York, which he named after himself, the Sheffield 
one son, William Eugene, was born. In House. His attention ever after was divided 
mfanc}' he accompanied his parents to Illi- between his hotel and farm, and on the 
nois, and here grew to manhood, and March latter he raised a good grade of stock in 
6, 1S79, married Miss Elizabeth M. J. Fox- which he took considerable pride. 
\ey, born January 15, 1S55, and a daughter After coming to Illinois, four more chil- 
of John and Jane (Reynolds) Foxley, her dren were born: May U., now the wife of 
father being a farmer in Grand Detour town- Dr. James Parkhurst, of Grand Detour; 
ship. By this union two sons were born — Charles A., of whom mention is made further 
Arthur E., born April 9, 1S87, and Nelson along in this sketch; Mark S. and Amos H., 
F. , born January 30, i S90. In politics who are carrying on the home farm. 
William E. Sheffield is a Republican, and Charles A. Sheffield was born October 
has served as supervisor of his township one i^, 1S62, in the village of Grand Detour, 
term, six terms as township clerk, three years and was educated in its public schools. His 
as school director, twelve j'ears as notary life has mainly been spent on the home 
public, and is at present justice of the peace. farm, but he has on occasions engaged in 
He is a member of Grand Detour Camp, other lines of business. In 188S he took 
No. 3683, M. W. A., Ulysses Grant Garri- charge of the butter making in the cream- 
son. No. II, K. G. Forsome years he has ery of Buell Brothers, Rock Falls, Illinois, 
been engaged in the general mercantile busi- In 1882 he took a position with an engin- 
ness in Grand Detour, and has a very eering corps at Sioux City, Iowa, engaged 
satisfactory trade. All four of the brothers in surveying a road through Iowa, and was 
belong to the same camp of M. W. A. 36S3. with the corps for sometime. In politics 
Upon coming to Illinois about 1S55, Mr. he is independent in local elections, but on 
Sheffield first located in Lee county, near general issues he affiliates with the Democ- 
Dixon, where he purchased a farm of one racy. In 1S94 he was elected constable of 
hundred acres, which was their horn; for his township and served four years. In 
two 3'ear3. Selling that farm, he moved 1S96 he was elected highway commissioner, 
into D xon, where he remained two years. which position he \'et fills. On the 20th of 
In November, 1S61, lie moved to Grand June, 1895, at Milwaukee, Wisconsin, he 
Detour, and for tsvo or three years culti- was united in marriage with Miss Lottie 
vated a rented farm, and then bought a farm Burhyte, daughter of John and Matilda 
in the towmship, about two miles north of (Mclntyre) Burhyte, of Fond du Lac, Wis- 
the village, of six hundred and seventeen consin. 

acres. However, he made his home in the Amos A. Sheffield departed this life jan- 

village where the faii:ily still reside. In uary 22, 189S. Three brothers and one 

1S64, he purchased the present home of the sister yet survive him, as follows; George 

family in the village, and soon after remod- H., a merchant of Holley, New York; Rev. 

eled the house, adding to its dimensions, Charles A. , a minister of the Baptist church, 



146 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of Topeka, Kansas; Dr. D. A., an old prac- 
titioner, of Dixon, Illinois; and Mrs. Julia 
Lyon, of Gilbertsville, New York. 

Mr. Sheffield was reared in tfie Baptist 
faith, in which in early life he was a mem- 
ber. Fraternally he was a member of Grand 
Detour lodge, A. F. & A. M. In politics 
he was a Democrat of the old school, a 
stanch advocate of the principles of the 
party. He filled a number of local positions 
of honor and trust, including commissioner 
of highways, constable, school director, 
and was also postmaster of Grand Detour 
for two terms under Cleveland, and was re- 
appointed by McKinley. After his death 
Mrs. Sheffield received the appointment, 
and is now discharging the duties of the 
office. He was a man of sterling character 
and worth, thoroughly honest, of good busi- 
ness ability, and his death was mourned not 
alone by his faithful wife and family, but 
by a large circle of friends and acquaint- 
ances. 



STEPHEN B. SHUART, president of 
the Byron Bank, of Byron, Illinois, has 
a wide reputation as a most capable finan- 
cier and occupies a position of no little 
prominence in business circles in Ogle 
county. His life demonstrates what can 
be accomplished through energy, careful 
management, keen foresight and the utili- 
zation of powers with which nature has en- 
dowed one, and the opportunities with 
which the times surround him. 

A native of Ohio, Mr. Shuart was born 
in Ashtabula county. May 15, 1837, ^"d '^ 
a son of Stephen Shuart, who was born in 
New Jersey, of German ancestry, the fam- 
ily having been founded in that state at an 
early day. The father was reared, how- 



ever, in New York and there married Miss 
Mary Beckwith, a native of Allegany coun- 
ty. New York. About 1836 he removed to 
Ashtabula county, Ohio, but spent his last 
years in Gerard, Pennsylvania, where his 
death occurred. 

When a lad of thirteen years Stephen 
B. Shuart left home to begin the battle of 
life for himself as a farm hand. His early 
school privileges were limited and he is 
mainly self-educated, having devoted con- 
siderable time to reading and study in later 
years. Coming west in 1S57, he spent the 
first winter in work upon a farm near Rock- 
ford, Illinois, but the following spring wit- 
nessed his arrival in Ogle county, where he 
has since made his home. Here he also 
worked on a farm during the summer season 
and the first winter attended a country 
school, but during the winter of i860 pur- 
sued his studies in the high school at Mt. 
Morris. 

His patriotism and loyalty to country 
were manifest May 24, 1861, by his enlist- 
ment in Company H, Fifteenth Illinois Vol- 
unteer Infantry, as a private. The regiment 
was assigned to the Western Army, and was 
first under General Fremont in Missouri. 
Later they participated in the battles of 
Shiloh, Corinth, Hatchie's Run, the second 
battle of Corinth; was in a number of en- 
gagements around Vicksburg, and helped to 
take that stronghold. Then followed the 
battles of Big Black and Jackson, after 
which they returned to Vicksburg, and from 
there went to Natchez, Mississippi. Mr. 
Shuart veteranized and returned home on a 
si.xty days' furlough, rejoining his regiment 
at Nashville, Tennessee. He was then 
with Sherman on the memorable march to 
the sea. WHiile his company was acting as 
rear guard at Ackworth, Georgia, about 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



147 



two hundred and fifty of the regiment, in- 
cluding our subject, were taken prisoners 
by Hood and sent to Andersonville, where 
they were incarcerated until the spring of 
1865. They were then taken to Vicksburg, 
where they were deserted by their guard 
after hearing of the assassination of Presi- 
dent Lincoln. Mr. Shuart soon returned 
north, and at Springfield was honorably 
discharged in May, 1S65, and reached 
home on the 4th of July. 

The following year he engaged in farm- 
ing in Marion township. Ogle county, where 
he first purchased forty acres of wild land, 
which he soon converted into highly culti- 
vated fields. He bought more land from 
time to time until he had one hundred 
and seventy-five acres, on which he erected 
a good residence and made many other im- 
provements which added to its value and 
attractive appearance. Renting his farm 
in 1887, he removed to Byron, where he 
was first engaged in buying, selling and 
shipping stock, and also conducted a 
butcher shop for a few years and then sold. 
In 1892, in partnership with other gentle- 
men, he purchased the Byron Bank, was 
elected president and is still filling th it posi- 
tion. They do a general banking business 
and their patronage extends throughout the 
county. Besides his own comfortable home 
in East Byron, Mr. Stewart has other resi- 
dence property, and is to-day one of the 
substantial and prosperous citizens of the 
community. 

In Ogle county, Mr. Shuart was married 
in 1 866, to Miss Julia A. Whittaker, a na- 
tive of the county and a daughter of John 
Whiitaker, one of its first settlers. She 
died in 1887, leaving one daughter, Emily, 
now the wife of Albert Rosier, of Byron. 
Mr. Shuart was again married, in Allegany 



county. New York, in 1888, his second 
union being with Miss Cynthia Londesberry, 
who was born, reared and educated in that 
state. 

In political sentiment, Mr. Shuart is a 
pronunced Republican, casting his first pres- 
idential vote for Abraham Lincoln in i860, 
and he has rendered his party effective ser- 
vice as a delegate to state and county con- 
ventions. Socially he is a member of 
Byron Lodge, F. & A. M., with which he 
has been officially connected for several 
years, and both he and his wife are mem- 
bers of the Eastern Star, in which she is 
serving as treasurer and Mr. Shuart as 
worthy patron. He is a courteous, affable 
gentleman, and, above all, wherever he is 
found, whether in public or private life, his 
integrity is above question and his honor 
above reproach. Byron owes much to him 
and numbers him among her valued citizens. 



HON. FRANCIS BACON, one of the 
leading attorneys of Oregon, Illinois, 
is well known, not only throughout the 
county of Ogle, but throughout the state. 
He is a native of the city, and was born 
August 21, 1858, his parents being Cap- 
tain Bowman \V. and Almira M. (Robert- 
son) Bacon. His father was a native of 
Huntington Mills, Luzerne county, Penn- 
sylvania, born October 5, 1823, and came 
with his parents to Illinois in 1839, locating 
in Sterling, Whiteside county. His educa- 
tion, begun in the public schools of his na- 
tive state, and continued in the schools of 
Sterling, was completed in Rock Ri\er 
Seminary, quite a noted institution in the 
early days, and which he entered in 1S46. 
After completing his literary studies he went 



148 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



to Oregon, and entered the office of Henry 
A. Mix and commenced the study of law. 

A strong union man, B. W. Bacon of- 
fered his services to his country in the hour 
of its peril, and on the 15th of August, 
1S62, entered the army, receiving a com- 
mission as captain of Company C, Seventy- 
fourth Illinois Volunteerlnfantry. His regi- 
ment was assigned to the Army of the Cum- 
berland under General Buell. With his 
regiment and company. Captain Bacon took 
part in the battle of Perryville, Kentucky, 
and was in various skirmishes in pursuit of 
Bragg. He was also in the battles of Stone 
River, Liberty Gap, and was in the Tulla- 
homa e.xpedition. Following this he was 
in the fight at Chickamauga, Mission Ridge, 
Buzzard Roost, Calhoun, Adairsville, Dal- 
las, Lost Mountain, and the battle of Ken- 
saw Mountain, in v.'hich he was severely 
wounded in the right and left arms, causing 
the amputation of the right arm July 12, 
and of the left a week later. Too weak 
to stand these operations ho died July 21, 
at Nashville, Tennessee, with his devoted 
wife at his side. He was a brave and gal- 
lant officer, cool and self-possessed in the 
hottest of battle, and always at his post of 
duty. He was patient and cheerful through- 
out his severe sufferings to the end. For gal- 
lant and meritorious service a commission as 
colonel was sent him from the war depart- 
ment, but his death occurred before it was 
received. 

Captain Bacon was married February i, 
1852, to Mrs. Almira M. Fuller, ncc Robert- 
son, widow of William W. Fuller, in his day 
one of the most prominent attorneys of 
Oregon, and an uncle of Margaret Fuller. 
She was born in Ripley, Chautauqua county. 
New York, November 27, 1S24, and came 
to Illinois in 1S40 in company with her pa- 



rents. In 1 84 1 she entered Rock River 
Seminary, from which she was later gradu- 
ated. She then became preceptress in that 
institution, a position she held until her 
marriage with Mr. Fuller, which took place 
March 3, 1S47. Mr. Fuller died August 17, 
1S49. After the death of her husband, 
Mrs. Fuller lived in widowhood about two 
and a half years and then married Captain 
Bacon, with whom she spent twelve happy 
years. Partly to divert her mind and to be 
the better fitted to superintend the educa- 
tion of her only son, Francis, she entered 
the Illinois Normal University in 1866, from 
which she was graduated in 1S70. She died 
in May, 1896, at Oregon, where she was 
held in high esteem for her mental at- 
tainments as well as for her estimable quali- 
ties as a Christian woman. 

Francis Bacon, the subject of this 
sketch, grew to manhood in his native city, 
and after attending the public schools en- 
tered the Highland Military Academy, at 
Worcester, Massachusetts, from which he 
was graduated in June, 1S77. He then took a 
regular law course in the Columbian Law 
School, Washington, District of Columbia, 
and was admitted to the district bar in 
April, 1879, being the youngest person ad- 
mitted at that time, not yet having reached 
his twenty-first year. From the law school 
he graduated the following June. In Janu- 
ary, 1880, he entered upon the practice of 
his profession at Oregon, and soon acquired 
a prominent position and recognition as an 
able attorney. In 1881 he was elected city 
attorney of Oregon, and re-elected in 18S3, 
but later resigned. In 1887 he was elected 
mayor of Oregon, and re-elected in 18S9. 
During his last term as mayor, the city was 
run and maintained, and various improve- 
ments made, without levying any city tax. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



149 



This was probably the only case of the kind 
in a city the size of Oregon. 

Mr. Bacon was married at Dixon, Illi- 
nois, June 23, 1881, to Kizzie H. Kennedy, 
a daughter of William Kennedy, and niece 
of Mr. Oliver Ernest. Two children have 
been born to them — Francis Everett and 
Marion Eugene. 

In addition to carrying on a very lucra- 
tive law practice, Mr. Bacon conducts a 
large stock farm of nearly four hundred 
acres near the city limits, giving it his per- 
sonal superintendence. He makes a spec- 
ialty of breeding Aberdeen-Angus cattle, in 
which he has been quite successful. He is 
also a large feeder, and ships annually sev- 
eral car loads of cattle. For some years 
he has taken considerable interest in mili- 
tary affairs, and is now captain of Company 
C, Sons of Veterans Regiment Illinois State 
Militia. The services of his company were 
offered to the general government during 
the war with Spain, but were not accepted, 
but the company was afterwards on duty 
at Virden, Illinois, during the coal strike of 
1898. 

Mr. Bacon has an established reputa- 
tion as a trial lawyer, and is engaged in 
nearly all of the jury cases. Perhaps his grea- 
test successes have been in criminal cases, 
and but two or three criminals defended by 
him have been committed to Joliet. While 
serving as mayor all indebtedness against 
the city was cancelled and many material 
improvements were made, among which 
was the extension of the city water works, 
and beneficial changes at the pumping sta- 
tion and in the fire department. The 
streets were carefully attended to, stone 
crossings being laid upon all the principal 
thoroughfares, and the streets of the city 

were lit by electricity. Mr. Bacon has al- 
io 



ways affiliated with the Republican party 
and his services have been in demand in the 
various campaigns in the discussion of the 
principles of the party. Mr. Bacon is a 
man of fine physique, with a corresponding 
heart, and either as a private citizen, in a 
professional capacity, or in his officialduties, 
is one of the most approachable and genial 
of gentlemen, and well deserves the high 
honor bestowed upon him by his fellow 
citizens. 



JOHN H. DAVIS, a retired farmer, resid- 
ing on section 14, Buffalo township, one 
mile east of the city of Polo, has been a 
resident of Ogle county since 1864. He 
was born in Washington county, Maryland, 
May 18, 1846. His father, William Davis, 
was a native of the same county and state, 
born about 1824. He there married Mar- 
garet Rohrer, likewise of Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland, and they became the parents 
of five children, as follows: John H., the 
subject of this sketch; William, a farmer of 
Pine Creek township; Martha, wife of Hugh 
L. Henry, of Johnson county, Kansas; 
James, living in Buffalo township; and Mary 
L. , wife of Columbus Sheeley, of Pine 
Creek township. The father died in 1856, 
a young man of thirty-two years, leaving a 
widow and five children. With true moth- 
erly devotion she determined to do the best 
she could by the fatherless ones. In 1864 
she came with the family to Ogle county 
and made a permanent location in Pine 
Creek township, and there she still resides, 
making her home with her daughter. 

The subject of this sketch was but ten 
years old when his father died, and but 
eighteen when he accompanied his mother 
to Ogle county. The oldest born, much 



ISO 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



depended upon him in the care and improve- 
ment of the farm, and his opportunities for 
obtaining an education were very hmited. 
It maybe said that he is almost wholly self- 
educated, the knowledf^e acquired being 
principally obtained in the school of experi- 
ence. Soon after his coming to the county 
he bought an interest in a threshing ma- 
chine, and for several seasons engaged in 
threshing grain for farmers throughout the 
county. 

Mr. Davis was married in Pine Creek 
township in February, 1870, to Miss Maria 
C. Powell, also a native of Washington 
county, Maryland, but who came to Ogle 
county in childhood. In the public schools 
of this county she received the greater part 
of her education. She is a sister of Sam- 
uel C. Powell, a sketch of whom appears on 
another page of this work. By this union 
six children were born, two of whom are 
now living — Gertie B. , a young lady, at 
home; and C. O., a student of Eureka Col- 
lege, of the class of 1899. The deceased 
are Carrie, who died at the age of five years; 
Anna, who died when eighteen years old; 
Ray, at eight months; and Minnie Lee, when 
about five months old. 

After his marriage Mr. Davis rented a 
farm in Pine Creek township a few years, 
and then bought a farm of one hundred 
and sixty acres in the same township, on 
which he resided for twenty-seven years. 
In 1885 he purchased the farm where he 
now resides and which he rented until the 
spring of 1897. He then came to the place 
and has since made it his home, although he 
rents out the land and is practically living 
retired. Since coming to this farm he has 
built a good house and barn, and otherwise 
improved the place. He still owns the 
Pine Creek farm, and in addition has seventy- 



eight acres in another locality, and sixty-two 
acres in still another locality. Success has 
crowned his efforts, having commenced life 
almost empty-handed, but he has been in- 
dustrious and persevering, and the result is 
seen in the property which he has accum- 
mulated and his well-tilled fields. 

Politically Mr. Davis is a Republican, 
and he has been identified with that party 
since casting his first presidential vote for 
General Grant in 1S6S. From that time 
to the present he has supported every presi- 
dential nominee of the party. While resid- 
ing in Pine Creek township, he served as 
road commissioner for several years, was a 
member of the board of supervisors two 
terms, and for years was a member of the 
school board. Both he and his family are 
members of the Pennsylvania Corners 
Christian church in Pine Creek township, 
and are earnest Christian people. 

For thirty-five years Mr. Davis has been 
a resident of Ogle county, coming here in 
his early manhood. He has been an active 
factor in the development of the county, 
especially of Pine Creek township. Modest 
in his bearing, he has calmly gone on his 
way doing that which seemed to him best, 
and enjoying the respect and esteem of those 
with whom he was brought in contact. 
While still in his prime he has accumulat- 
ed a competency and believes in enjoj'ing 
life while he can. 



LEWIS MOKING is one of the progress- 
ive and enterprising farmers of For- 
reston township, where he owns a fine farm 
of one hundred and sixty-three acres on 
section i, which has been transformed into 
one of the best and most desirable home- 
steads of the locality. The land has been 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



151 



brought to an excellent state of cultivation, 
and is embellished by a good and substan- 
tial set of farm buildings. A flourishing or- 
chard serves to add to the comfortable ap- 
pearance of the premises, and supplies the 
household with the luxuries of the season. 

Mr. Moring was born in Forreston town- 
ship, November 27, 1S57, and is a son of 
Frederick Moring, who was born in Ger- 
many in 181 1, and there married Dorothea 
Foshea, also of German birth. In 1S48 
they emigrated to America and joined some 
friends from their native land who had 
previously located in Ogle county. In 
Maryland township the father bought a 
tract of eighty acres, built a little house 
thereon, and continued the improvement 
and cultivation of the land for several years. 
He finally sold the place and came to For- 
reston township, where he purchased about 
six hundred acres in three different tracts. 
He located on section 18, when he opened up 
a farm of two hundred and forty acres, 
which he improved with good buildings. 
Upon that place he died January 19, 1889, 
and his wife passed away December 23, 
1890, the remains of both being interred in 
the Prairie Dell cemetery. Lewis is the 
youngest in their family of eight children, 
three sons and five daughters, all of whom 
are still living and are heads of families. 
The others are Mrs. Dorothea Bower, of 
Ogle county; Mrs. Mary Timmer; Mrs. 
Louisa Dorman; Mrs. Lizzie Hodger; Fred- 
erick; Mrs. Ella Garles; and Henry. 

Lewis Moring was reared in much the 
usual manner of farmer boys, attending 
school in winter, and assisting in the work 
of the farm during the summer months, and 
he remained with his father until he reached 
man's estate. He then rented a part of the 
farm, which he operated for a number of 



jears. He was married in Forreston town- 
ship, March 8, 1883, to Miss Caroline Zun- 
dahl, a native of Maryland township, Ogle 
county, and a daughter of Christopher Zun- 
dahl, one of the early settlers of the county. 
Nine children bless this union, namely: 
Lizzie, Alvin, Anna, Ida, Clara, Mabel, Es- 
ther, Ruth and Laura. 

In the spring of 1883, Mr. Moring locat- 
ed upon his present farm, to the further de- 
velopment and improvement of which he 
has since devoted his energies with most 
gratifying results, converting it into one of 
the most desirable farms of the township. 
He has been a life-long Republican, casting 
his first vote for James A. Garfield, and he 
is now serving his third term as school di- 
rector. He and his wife are active and 
prominent members of the Prairie Dell 
Presbyterian church, with which he is offi- 
cially connected, serving as deacon, and 
both are workers in the Sunday school. So- 
cially he is a member of Florence Lodge, 
M. W. A. He is well known in his part of 
the county as a man of exemplary habits, 
of upright character and sterling worth, and 
he and his estimable wife have the respect 
of the entire community. 



PROF. JOHN G. ROYER, president of 
Mt. Morris College, has an excellent 
reputation as an educator, and is well 
known throughout the United States. He 
was born in Hartleton, Union county, Penn- 
sylvania, April 22, 1838, and is the son of 
Jacob and Susan (Myers) Royer, both of 
whom were natives of Pennsylvania, the 
former born in October, 1797, and the lat- 
ter in 1 801. The paternal grandfather, 
John Royer, was born in Lancaster, Penn- 
sylvania, He married Anna Grove, a na- 



'52 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



tive of the same state. He was a minister 
of the German Baptist church, preaching 
the gospel as the opportunity was afforded 
him, and also attending to the duties of his 
farm. Jacob Royer also engaged in agri- 
cultural pursuits, following that vocation 
during his entire life. He was an earnest 
and devoted member of the German Baptist 
church, of which body his wife was also a 
member. They were the parents of seven 
children. Isaac, born October 25, 1821, 
married Anna Shellenberger, and they be- 
came the parents of four children. Both 
are now deceased. Abraham, born October 
11,1824, married Sarah Kleckner, and three 
children blessed their union. He was a sol- 
dier in the One Hundred and Forty-eighth 
Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, and lost 
his life in the battle of Petersburg, in May, 
1864. His widow is yet living in Wiscon- 
sin. Jacob, born October 17, 1827, mar- 
ried Elizabeth Strickler, and to them were 
born seven children. Both are living in 
Union county, Pennsylvania, where he is 
engaged in farming. Elizabeth, born Oc- 
tober 17,1829, married William Royer, and 
they also reside in Union county. Pennsyl- 
vania, where he is farming. Mary, born 
February 19, 1832, died April 18, 1858. 
John G., our subject, was ne.xt in order of 
birth. Samuel, born June 3,1840, married 
Mary Mumert, and they have one child. 
They reside in Miami county, Ohio, where 
he is engaged in farming. The mother of 
these children died in August, 1868. In 
early life Jacob Royer was a Whig, but 
voted for Buchanan in 1856, on account of 
the fact that he was a former schoolmate of 
Buchanan. After that he voted the Repub- 
lican ticket until his death, which occurred 
in April, 187C. 

The subject of this sketch was reared on 



a farm, and received his primary education 
in the common schools. He later attended 
the academy at Mifflinsburg, Pennsylvania, 
but completed his literary course at Union 
Seminary, New Berlin, Pennsylvania. Be- 
fore completing his education, however, he 
taught several terms of school, commencing 
at the age of si.xteen years. He was but 
twenty years old when he left the seminary. 
He then determined to make teaching his 
life work, and in connection with the preach- 
ing of the gospel, has since engaged in that 
profession. Commencing in the graded 
schools of his native state, he taught for 
about five years, and then, at the age of 
twenty-five, went to Darke count}-, Ohio, 
and engaged in teaching in the graded 
schools until 1871, the last si.x years of 
which time he was principal of the schools 
at Webster and Versailles. In 1871 he 
went to Burnettsville, White county, Indi- 
ana, and for four years was principal of the 
high school at that place. He then ac- 
cepted the superintendency of the high 
school at Monticello, Indiana, and was 
there eight years. From Monticello he 
came to Mt. Morris and was assigned the 
chair of English literature in Mt. Morris 
College. One year later he was elected 
president of the college, since which time it 
has been under his control. Since taking 
active charge the college has met with a 
fair degree of success and gained in popu- 
larity with the people. 

On the 8th of December, i860. Prof. 
Ivoyer was united in marriage with ^^iss 
Lizzie Reiff, born November 30, 1S38, a 
native of Union county, Pennsylvania, and 
a daughter of Christian H. and Susan (Tit- 
low) Reiff, both of whom were natives of 
Pennsylvania. Both are now deceased, 
the latter dying in 1870, and the former in 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



153 



1896 He was a manufacturer of agricult- 
ural machines, including threshers and hul- 
lers, being the inventor of a clover sep- 
arator. They were the parents of ten chil- 
dren, of whom Mrs. Royer was sixth in or- 
der of birth. Religiously they were members 
of the German Baptist church. Politically 
he was first a Whig and then a Ivepublican. 
To Prof, and Mrs. Royer eight children 
were born, (i) Galen, born Septembers, 
1S62, married Anna Miller, of Mt. Morris, 
and to them have been born five children — 
Bessie, Daniel, Catherine, Ruth and Anna. 
They reside in Mt. Morris, and he is secre- 
tary of the General Mission Board of the 
Brethren church. He is also connected 
with the Brethren Publishing Company. (2) 
Susan, born July 10, 1S65, married Prof. 
E. S. Young, of Canton, Ohio, and they 
have five children — Katie, Vinna, Marguer- 
ite, Ida May and Paul. Prof. Young is 
now president of Manchester College, North 
Manchester, Indiana. (3) Mary, born June 
16, 1S67, is at home. (4) Ida, born Octo- 
ber 27, 1868, married J. M. Myers, and 
they have one child. Galena. They reside 
at Cando, North Dakota, where he is en- 
gaged in the mercantile business. (5) Net- 
tie, born March 31, 1870, tnarried J. A. 
Brubaker, and they have four children — 
Madge, Ralph, Bernice and Nellie. He is 
secretary and general manager of the Chain 
Stay Fence Company, of Sterling, Illinois. 
(6) Lillie, born November 18, 1S72, is a 
teacher in the high school at Cando, North 
Dakota, and she owns one-half section of 
land near that place. (7) Josephine, born 
October 9, 1875, is also residing at Cando, 
North Dakota, where she is the owner of a 
quarter section of land. (8) Myrtle, born 
July 18, 1880, is a student in Mt. Morris 
College. All but Mary are graduates of Mt. 



Morris College. Galen is also a graduate 
of Juniata College, of Huntingdon, Penn- 
sylvania. 

Politically Prof. Royer is a Republican, 
but gives little time to political affairs, his 
college work commanding his entire time, 
except that given to ministerial labors. He 
is a logical and convincing speaker, a thor- 
ough student of the word of God, and a 
firm believer in the inspiration of the Bible. 
For forty years he has given his time to 
teaching the youth of the land, and his in- 
struction has always been of a nature to 
make better citizens, to fit them not only 
for their proper station in this life, but pre- 
pare them for the life to come. The world 
is always the better for such men. 



JAMES CAMPBELL, a retired farmer 
who now makes his home in Byron, 
Illinois, is oi sturdy Scotch ancestry, and 
has inherited the traits of industry, thrift 
and economy peculiar to that people, that 
always bring to them success in their vari- 
ous occupations. He was born in the city 
of Forfar, near Dundee, Scotland, Novem- 
ber 4, 1829, a son of John and Jane (Fair- 
weather) Campbell, also natives of that 
country. The father, whj was a tobacconist 
by trade, emigrated to the New World in 
1 83 1 and first settled in Philadelphia, but 
later removed to Miami county, Ohio. He 
sent for his family who joined him in Phila- 
delphia. In Miami county, he first lived on 
a farm but later removed to the cit}- of 
Piqua. In his family were five children, 
four sons and one daughter, all of whom 
reached years of maturity. In order of 
birth they were as follows: Robert and 
\\'illiam, now deceased; James, our subject; 
David Angus, who was a soldier of the 



154 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Civil war and is now a resident of Pickaway, 
Ohio; and Ann, deceased. 

The subject of this review was reared 
on a farm in his native land and had good 
common- school advantages in early life. 
Coming to America in 1S53, he joined his 
parents in Ohio, and remained with them 
a few years, assisting in the operation of 
the home farm. He was married in Miami 
county, August 23, i860, to Miss Margaret 
A. Linn, a native of that county, and a 
daughter of William Linn, who removed 
from Pennsylvania to Ohio in an early day, 
settling in Pickaway about 1822. Mrs. 
Campbell was provided with excellent 
school privileges, supplementing the edu- 
cation acquired in the common schools by 
a course in the Troy high school and the 
O.xford Female College, and for six years 
she successfully engaged in teaching. By 
her marriage to our subject she has become 
the mother of seven children, namely: John, 
a resident of Storm Lake, Iowa; Jane A., 
wife of C. E. Johnson, who lives near 
Bridgewater, South Dakota; Margaret M., 
wife of Charles Bowie, ofTacoma, Washing- 
ton; Mary G. , a trained nurse of Chicago; 
Belle, wife of William Kelly, of Chicago; 
William L. , a druggist and business man of 
Byron; and Elizabeth Ada, who is now a 
student in a business college in Rockford, 
Illinois. 

After his marriage Mr. Campbell en- 
gaged in farming in Ohio for five years, but 
in 1865 came to Ogle county, Illinois, and 
purchased an improved farm of eighty acres 
in Byron township about five miles from 
the village of Byron. As his financial re- 
sources increased he added to the original 
purchase until he had two hundred and 
eighty acres of valuable land, on which he 
made many excellent iinprovements, includ- 



ing the erection of a pleasant residence and 
good barns and outbuildings. He success- 
fully engaged in the operation of his farm 
until 1897, when he rented the place and 
removed to Bjron, where he has since 
lived retired from active labor in a comfort- 
able home of his own. 

Politically Mr. Campbell has been identi- 
fied with the Republican party since casting 
his first presidential vote for Abraham Lin- 
coln in i860, and he has been honored with 
a number of responsible positions in his 
township, being treasurer for the long 
period of twenty-six years, supervisor for 
four consecutive years, during which time 
he was a member of several important com- 
mittees. He has also served as highway 
commissioner and a member of the board 
of education, besides being a delegate to a 
number of county conventions of his party. 
He and his wife are now connected with 
the Congregational church of Byron, and 
previously were for thirty-two years active 
and prominent members of the Middle Creek 
Presbyterian church. They are esteemed 
residents of Byron and taken an active in- 
terest in the welfare of the community, aid- 
ing all beneficial schemes tending to im- 
prove its moral, educational or social status. 



JOHN BECK, a retired farmer living on 
section 33, Woosung township, is a 
well-known German farmer who has made 
a success in life. He was born 'in Hessen, 
Darmstadt, Germany, in 1822, and is the 
son of John and Elizabeth Beck, both na- 
tives of the same country. They were the 
parents of one son, our subject, and one 
daughter, Katherine, who is now deceased. 
The wife and mother dying, he was again 
married, and by the second union there 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



155 



were five children, of whom two are yet 
living — Leonard, on the old home farm in 
Tazewell county, Illinois, and Elizabeth, 
now the wife of Jacob Meyers, a retired 
farmer of Pekin, Illinois. 

John Beck, Sr., was a shoemaker by 
trade, which occupation he followed in his 
native land. In 1S32 he came to the 
United States and first located in Franklin 
county, Pennsylvania, where he remained 
until 1845, working at his trade. Saving 
some money, he came to Illinois and settled 
in Tazewell county, where he secured one 
hundred and si.xty acres of land and spent 
the remainder of his life as a farmer. He 
died in 1S81 at the age of eighty-five years. 

The subject of this sketch was but ten 
years of age when he accompanied his fa- 
ther to the United States. In his native 
land he commenced to acquire an education 
in the parochial schools, but on coming to 
this country the opportunity was not given 
him to attend the public schools here but a 
comparatively short time. As soon as he 
was old and large enough he engaged in 
farm work in Pennsylvania, at which he 
continued until he was eighteen years old, 
when he took up the tanner's trade, at 
which he worked until he came to Illinois 
in 185G. Four years previous to his com- 
ing he had purchased eighty acres of land 
through the agency of his father in Taze- 
well count}'. On his arrival he settled on 
his farm and at once commenced its im- 
provement. He there remained until 1867, 
when he sold the place and came to Ogle 
county and purchased his present farm in 
Woosung township, comprising two hun- 
dred acres. 

Mr. Beck was married in Pennsylvania 
to Margaret Hanstein, and to them have 
been born five children: John F. , who 



married Margaret Coon, of Frederick 
county, Maryland; William, who is in the 
west; Alfred, a prosperous farmer of Buffa- 
lo township, now residing in Polo; Clara, 
who remains at home with her father, and 
Amos, a farmer of Nemaha county, Kan- 
sas. 

Mr. Beck has followed general farming, the 
raising of grain and stock, and is one of the 
highly esteemed citizens of the county. All 
that he has has been acquired by his own 
industry and good management. Com- 
mencing life a poor boy, working for small 
wages, he has persevered, toiling early and 
late, and success has come to him, and he 
is now enabled to lay aside business cares 
and take life easy during the remainder of 
his days. His good wife died in 1S73. 



ANDREW F. LONG, who resides on sec- 
tion 15, Lincoln township, owns and 
operates a fine farm of one hundred and 
sixty acres, two miles from Haldane. He 
has been a resident of the county since 
1845, a period of fifty-four years, coming 
here a lad of eleven years. He was born 
near Hagerstown, Washington county, Mary- 
land, June 20, 1834, and is the son of Rev. 
Jacob Long, a native of Washington county, 
Maryland, born in 1784, and who was the 
son of Isaac Long, a native of Pennsylvania, 
of German ancestry. Isaac Long removed 
from Franklin county, Pennsylvania, to 
Washington county, Maryland, at a very 
early day. Jacob Long grew to manhood 
in his native county and there married 
Catherine Friedley, a native of Franklin 
county, Pennsylvania, and daughter of 
Andrew Friedley, born in Pennsylvania of 
Swiss descent. 



156 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Jacob Long was a minister in the Ger- 
man Baptist church, but as a means of Hve- 
lihood engaged in farming during his entire 
life. In 1845, in company with about a 
dozen families, he left his native state and 
came to Ogle county, Illinois, being about 
five weeks cii route. He settled on the 
farm where our subject now lives, entermg 
a tract of six hundred and forty acres, and 
at once commencing its improvement. He 
was very prosperous, being as industrious as 
the day was long. As a minister of the 
Brethren he established what is known as 
the west branch of the Brethren church, 
and during his life was very active in its 
work. He was a good man and accom- 
plished much good in the community in 
which he lived. His death occurred Feb- 
ruary 17, 18GS. His wife survived him 
some years, dying May 3, 1879, when nearly 
ninety years old. They were the parents 
of twelve children, ten of whom grew to 
mature years, and four yet surviving. Han- 
nah is the wife of Daniel Singer, of Mary- 
land Station, Ogle county. Samuel is a 
retired farmer of Gove county, Kansas. 
Rebecca is the widow of Jonathan Smith, 
of Pawnee county, Nebraska. Andrew F. 
is the subject of this review. 

Andrew F. Long came with his parents 
to Ogle county, and on the home farm grew 
to manhood, in the meantime attending the 
common schools and assisting in the work 
of the farm. He remained with his parents 
until the father's death, when he succeeded 
to the home place. He was married in Lin- 
coln township, February 26, 1857, to Miss 
Ann Maria Wallace, a native of Washing- 
ton county, Maryland, and daughter of 
James Wallace, a native of the same coun- 
ty and state, who moved west with his fam- 
ily in 1845, settling in Lincoln township, 



where he opened up a farm and reared 
his family. By this union nine children 
have been born. Isadora died at the age 
of nine years and six months. Laura Alice 
grew to womanhood, married Hiram Goode, 
and after his decease she wedded Henry 
Davidson. She died in July, 1896, leaving 
four children, of whom one was by the first 
marriage, and three by the last one. The 
youngest born, Vinna P. Davidson, is now 
an inmate of our subject's home. Grace A. 
is the wife of B. F. Miller, of Wright coun- 
ty, Iowa. Cora Edna is the wife of D. H. 
Newcomer, a farmer of Mt. Morris town- 
ship. Mary Esther is the wife of J. C. 
Muller, a carpenter by trade, but who owns 
a nice farm in Mt. Morris township. O. C. 
A. is a farmer in Lincoln township. Ro- 
sella L. P. is living at home. Arthur J., a 
well educated young man, is a successful 
teacher in his native county. 

Mr. and Mrs. Long commenced their 
domestic life on the farm where they yet 
reside, and which has been their home for 
forty-two years, and his home for fifty-four 
years. They are well known, especially in 
the western part of the county, and by all 
who know them are held in the highest es- 
teem. The only official position held by 
him has been in connection with the public 
schools, serving as a member of the school 
board and clerk of the same. His first po- 
litical views were those held by the Whig 
party, the party with which his father was 
identified. He attained his majority at the 
time of the birth of the Republican party, to 
which he has since gave adhesion. Both 
he and his wife are earnest and devoted 
members of the west branch of the German 
Baptist church, and in the simple and Ap- 
ostolic teachings have the utmost faith. As 
a citizen he has always endeavored to be 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



157 



true and loyal, doing his duty faithfully and 
well. In the development of the count}' he 
has done his part. 



HENRY J. SCHRADER is one of Ogle 
county's honored sons and most active 
and progressive business men. Through- 
out his career of continued and far-reaching 
usefulness his duties have been performed 
with the greatest care, and business inter- 
ests have been so managed as to win him 
the confidence of the public and the pros- 
perity which should always attend honor- 
able effort. 

Mr. Schrader was born in Leaf River 
township, January 11, 1S44, a son of Will- 
iam Schrader, who was born in Ohio in 
1812, and came to Ogle county about 1842. 
He took up land in Leaf River township 
and developed a fine farm of one hundred 
and twenty acres, upon which he success- 
fully engaged in agricultural pursuits until 
life's labors were ended, passing away in 
1875. Here he married Mrs. Mary Myers, 
ncc Her, a native of Maryland, who came to 
this state with her father, David Her, a pio- 
neer of Ogle county of 1837. She first 
married Peter Myers, by whom she had two 
children, and by the second union there 
were three children, of whom Henry J., our 
subject, is the eldest; Samuel is a farmer of 
Ogle county; and Sarah is the wife of Will- 
iam Beebe, also of this county. The chil- 
dren by the first marriage were Peter L. 
Myers, of Ogle county, and Hettie, wife of 
Wilson Hubble, both now deceased. The 
mother died some years before her second 
husband. 

On the home farm Henry J. Schrader 
passed his boyhood and youth in much the 
usual manner of farmer bo\s, assisting in 

17 



the labors of the fields during the summer 
season and attending the district schools 
during the winter months. He remained 
with his father and operated a part of the 
farm until twenty-four years of age. On 
the 13th of February, 1868, in Ogle county, 
was celebrated his marriage with Miss Tena 
Light, a daughter of John Light, whose 
sketch appears elsewhere in this work. 
Three children bless this union: Joseph, 
who died February 15, 1875, at the age of 
eighteen months; Mary, who was well edu- 
cated in the schools of Leaf River and 
Mt. Morris, November 2, 1898, married 
Charles T. Schelling, of Leaf River; and 
Lewis M. , a graduate of the Leaf River 
schools, also attended the United Breth- 
ren College at Huntington, Indiana, for one 
year, and is now learning telegraphy at Still- 
man Valley. 

After his marriage Mr. Schrader located 
on a farm of one hundred and sixty acres 
near Egan, to the further improvement and 
cultivation of which he devoted his ener- 
gies with marked success. He built a good 
residence, barn, granary, cribs and other 
outbuildings, and later bought another farm 
of one hundred and si.xty acres in the same 
locality, making his home there for three 
or four years. He then bought seventy- 
seven acres on the northern line of the 
county in Leaf River township, and to-day 
owns three valuable farms aggregating four 
hundred acres, which he has placed under 
excellent cultivation. In March, 1889, he 
rented his farms and moved to the village 
of Leaf River, where he bought a lot and 
built a pleasant residence that is now his 
home. His time is now devoted to the 
management of his estate, and he is still 
one of the most active, energetic and en- 
terprising men of the community. 



158 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Mr. Schrader cast his first presidential 
ballot for General U. S. Grant in 1868, and 
continued to affiliate with the Republican 
party for some years, but now gives his sup- 
port to the men and measures of the Pro- 
hibition party, and is an earnest advocate 
of the cause of temperance. At the pres- 
ent time he is acceptably serving as a mem- 
ber of the town board, but has never been 
an aspirant for political honors. The family 
are members of the United Brethren church 
and hold an enviable position in the social 
circle of the community in which they make 
their home. 



JAMES I. MASON, residing on section 
22, Buffalo township, is one of the sub- 
stantial farmers of Ogle county. He is a 
native of the county, and was born in Buf- 
falo township, November 12, 1843. He 
traces his ancestry back to Sampson Mason, 
who was an officer in Cromwell's army, and 
who emigrated to America in 1650, locating 
in Massachusetts. James Mason, the grand- 
father of our subject, was a native of Rhode 
Island, and his son, Edward Mason, was a 
native of the same state, born November 12, 
1 8 10. The family emigrated to New York, 
settling in Cayuga county, when Edward 
was a lad of ten years. In that county 
James Mason engaged in agricultural pur- 
suits and there spent the remainder of his 
life. 

Edward Mason grew to manhood in 
Cayuga county, and received a limited edu- 
cation in its common schools. When he 
arrived at man's estate he determined to 
come west with a view of bettering his con- 
dition in life. In Milwaukee, Wisconsin, he 
was united in marriage with Miss Debra 
Van Wormer, a native of Onondaga county, 



New York, and daughter of Isaac Van 
Wormer, and immediately after he came 
with his bride to Ogle county and located 
in Buffalo Grove, where he had previously 
made a claim. This was in 1837, and he, 
therefore, became one of the pioneers of 
the county. 

On making the county his permanent 
home, Edward Mason immediately com- 
menced to improve his claim, and as soon 
as the land came into market he purchased 
the same from the government. He be- 
came a very prosperous farmer and opened 
up three different farms, among which was 
the one now occupied by our subject. On 
this farm he later located and spent the last 
years of his life. He died September 3, 
1 886, while his wife preceded him, passing 
away in October, 1881. Their remains 
were laid to rest in the Fairmont cemetery, 
where a neat monument has been erected 
to their memory. 

James I. Mason is the only child living 
of Edward and Debra Mason. He grew to 
manhood on the home farm, and in the 
common schools received his primary edu- 
cation. He later entered Mt. Carroll Sem- 
inary, which he attended for a time, and 
then went to Aurora, completing his school 
life in Jennings Seminary, at that place. 
Choosing farming as his life calling, he re- 
mained with his father until the latter's 
death, when he succeeded to the old home- 
stead, and has since been successfully en- 
gaged in general farming. In addition he 
has for about twenty years engaged in feed- 
ing and dealing in pure blood shorthorn 
cattle, and also a good grade of horses. In 
all that he has done he has met with a fair 
degree of success. His fine farm of three 
hundred and ten acres, lying two and a half 
miles southeast of Polo, is always kept un- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



159 



der a high state of cultivation and always 
attractive to the eye. By birth and train- 
ing a farmer, everything about the place 
gives evidence of the fact. 

On national issues Mr. Mason always 
votes the Republican ticket, but on local 
issues, he votes for the man he considers 
the best qualified for the office. For him- 
self he never cared for, nor would he accept 
any office. Born in Ogle county before it 
had taken any advanced steps in general 
progress, his growth has been cotemporane- 
ous, and he has been an eye witness of 
nearly everj'thing that has changed for the 
better, and he takes a just pride in the 
achievements of the past while having a 
lively hope for the future. 



SOLOMON DAVIS, deceased, was one 
of the large number of persons to come 
to Ogle county from Washington county, 
Maryland, and who became the most sub- 
stantial citizens, making of the county of 
their adoption one of the best in the great 
state of Illinois. He was born in Boones- 
borough, Washington county, Maryland, 
December 28, 1825, and in his native county 
grew to manhood and received a common- 
school education. In his youth he learned 
the trade of tailor, and followed that occu- 
pation for some years. He was the son of 
Edward and Mary (Smith) Davis, both of 
whom were natives of Pennsylvania. 

On the loth of August, 1848, our sub- 
ject was united in marriage with Miss Re- 
becca Fletcher, daughter of Louis and Dela 
(Shafer) Fletcher, who were natives of 
Maryland, of which state she was also a na- 
tive. In the fall of 1855 he came with his 
family to Ogle county, where he worked at 
his trade until 1861, when he opened a 



restaurant and grocery store in Mt. Morris, 
in which line he was fairly successful. He 
continued in that trade until his death, 
October 3, 1897. In politics he was a 
Democrat, and while a strong union man he 
did not enter the service in the Civil war, 
but had one brother, John Davis, killed at 
the battle of Gettysburg. His father and 
mother came to Ogle county in the same 
year that he made settlement, in 1855. 
The father served as postmaster of Mt. 
Morris for a time, as did our subject. 

To Solomon and Rebecca Davis twelve 
children were born. Laura J., born July 
22, 1849, married Thomas Avey, and they 
made their home in Mt. Morris. She died 
leaving two sons. Louis D. married Miss 
Ella White, and was living at Marshall- 
town, Iowa, when he met his death by ac- 
cident. He left a wife and si,\ children. 
Otho F. married Kittie McMullen, of Lin- 
coln, Illinois, where they now reside, and 
where he follows his trade of carpentering. 
Anna F., born February 22, 1855, married 
December 28, 1873, James H. Depue, and 
they live in Chicago, where he is employed 
as car inspector. Mary D. , born April 12, 
1857, married Albert Lookabaugh, a black- 
smith of Mt. Morris, where they now reside. 
Charles V., born August 27, 1858, died of 
paralysis at the age of twenty-nine years. 
He was a printer by trade. Eva C. , born 
October 30, i860, married Fred Petrie, and 
they live in Clinton, Iowa, where he is em- 
ployed on the police force. Ida E., born 
October 31, 1862, died in childhood. Hat- 
tie M., born May 9, 1864, married James 
Miller, and they now reside in Clinton, 
Iowa, where he has a position with a whole- 
sale drug house. Benjamin S., born May 
24, 1866, married Annie Sharp, and they 
live in Washington, District of Columbia, 



i6o 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



where he has a position in the war depart- 
ment, a position that he has held since 
1888. Seymour S., born May 29, 1868, 
married Elizabeth O'Leary, and they reside 
in Chicago, where he is engaged in the milk 
business. Florence R., is living at home. 
Mrs. Davis has been a member of the 
Methodist Episcopal church since she was 
ten years old, and has always taken an act- 
ive interest in the work of the church, en- 
deavoring to do her full duty in the Master's 
service. She was born in Boonsborough, 
Washington county, Maryland, April 9, 
1830. Of her seven brothers, two were 
killed in the war for the union, Robert be- 
ing killed at the battle of Bull's Run, and 
Charles at the battle of Liberty Gap. Her 
parents also came to Mt. Morris in 1855, 
her father following the calling of an auc- 
tioneer. He served in the war of 18 12, and 
the sword that he carried in that war is yet 
in the possession of Mrs. Davis. When the 
Masons of Mt. Morris have a gathering or a 
funeral to attend they borrow that sword, 
Mr. Fletcher having been a prominent 
Mason. He was also a m.ember of the Odd 
Fellows and the Sons of Temperance. In 
the latter organization he was quite promi- 
nent, being a stanch temperance advocate. 
He was a member of the M. E. church for 
many years in Maryland and served as Sun- 
day school superintendent for about thirty 
years, also served as magistrate in Mary- 
land for a number of years. Politically he 
was a Whig. He died in Mt. Morris in 
1857. 



WILLIAM L. PALMER. —The world 
instinctively pays deference to the 
man whose success has been worthily 
achieved, and who has fought his way un- 



aided from an humble to an e.xalted position 
in the business and social world. Self- 
reliance, conscientiousness, energy, hon- 
esty — these are the traits of character which 
insure the highest emoluments and greatest 
success, and to these may be attributed the 
success that has crowned the efforts of Mr. 
Palmer. For many years he has been 
prominently identified with the business 
interests of Ogle county, carrying on opera- 
tions as an agriculturist on section 17, Leaf 
River township, and as a merchant, grain 
dealer, etc., at Myrtle. 

Like many of the most enterprising and 
progressive citizens of the county, Mr. Palmer 
is a native of Maryland, born in \\'ashington 
county, October 22, 1832, and is a son of 
John and Elizabeth (Wetty) Palmer, who 
were born, reared and married in the same 
county. In 1847 the family started for 
Illinois by team, and finally arrived in Ogle 
county on the 2d of June, of that year. 
The father bought a farm in Mt. Morris 
township, opened up a claim, and continued 
its further improvement and cultivation 
until called from this life in the fall of 1865. 
His estimable wife died two years later. 
In their family were ten children, five sons 
and five daughters, of whom only four are 
now living. 

Being a lad of thirteen years when he 
came to the county with his parents, William 
L. Palmer was of great assistance to his 
father in the development and improvement 
of the farm. After reaching man's estate 
he continued its operation for some years, 
but in 1864 removed to Leaf River town- 
ship, where he bought four hundred acres, 
the only improvements on the same being 
an old house and frame barn. He has 
added to the original purchase until he now 
has five hundred acres of valuable land in 




W. L. PALMER. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



l6: 



the home place, has erected thereon a com- 
modious brick residence, a large and sub- 
stantial barn with a basement, and other 
buildings, making it one of the best improved 
farms of the locality. Mr. Palmer has not 
confined his attention alone to agricultural 
pursuits, but has branched out into other 
lines of business. As the Great Western 
railroad runs through his land near his 
home, he secured the establishment of a 
station upon his place, and to it was given 
the name of Myrtle. He has been a most 
prominent and active factor in the growth 
and development of the village, built an 
elevator there, established a store and also 
a creamery. The first and last of these are 
carried on by a stock company, of which he 
is president and the largest shareholder. 
He erected the store building, donated a lot 
for the church, and in every possible way 
has advanced the interests of the village. 
Besides the property already mentioned he 
owns eighty acres of good timber land in 
Byron township. 

On September 20, i860, in Rockford, 
Illinois, Mr. Palmer married Delana Kate 
Hammond, who was also born and reared 
in Washington county, Maryland, and they 
have become the parents of eight children, 
of whom si.x are now living, namely: Al- 
fred, who runs the elevator at M}rtle and 
is engaged in the grain and stock business 
at that place; Anna E. , wife of David Rowe, 
a farmer of Leaf River township; Louisa, 
wife of W. H. Wagoner, of the same town- 
ship; Ella, wife of Daniel Emory, of Byron 
township; Kate, wife of Alva Stine, of Leaf 
River township; Ouimby, who is married 
and engaged in farming on the home place; 
Elson and Bertha May, both at home. 

Mr. Palmer has been a life-long sup- 
porter of the Republican party, casting his 



first presidential ballot for John C. Fremont 
in 1856, and for every nominee of the party 
since that time. Being a warm friend of 
our public school system he has efficiently 
served as a member of the school board for 
a number of years, but has never cared for 
the honors or emoluments of political office, 
preferring to give his undivided attention to 
his extensive business interests. As a pub- 
lic spirited and enterprising citizen, how- 
ever, he gives his support to all objects 
tending to advance the welfare of the com- 
munity along any line, and is recognized as 
one of the most useful and valued residents 
of the county. 



CLARK K. MATTESON, a representa- 
tive and prominent farmer of Ogle 
county, owns and operates a fine farm of 
one hundred and forty-four acres on sec- 
tions 21 and 22, Rockvale township. He 
was born in Green Island, Schenectady 
county. New York, September 29, 1836, 
and is descended from good old colonial 
stock. His parents, Spink and Tabitha 
(Waite) Matteson, were both natives of 
Rensselaer county. New York, the former 
born June 27, 1802, the latter April 18, 
1797. The paternal grandparents, Moses 
and Amy (Matteson) Matteson, were both 
born in the town of Westerly, Rhode Isl- 
and, but were not related prior to their 
marriage. The grandfather was a sleigh- 
maker by trade, but after his removal to 
Rensselaer county, New York, was engaged 
in farming. In his family were twelve 
children, of whom nine reached years of 
maturity, namely: Spink, Laura, Gorah, 
William, Abel, Almeron, Horatio and Dan- 
iel. Amy Matteson was a daughter of 
David and Sarah Matteson, who removed 



1 64 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



from Rhode Island to Rensselaer county, 
New York, in 1789, and settled in the town 
of Berlin. Their children were Lydia, 
Gideon, Ishmiel, Deborah, Titus, Job, 
Phebe, Sarah, Daniel and Amy. 

Spink Matteson grew to manhood in 
Berlin and Petersburg, Rensselaer county, 
but never went to school only three days in 
his life, the teacher having struck him with 
a whip over the eye, producing a scar which 
he carried to his grave. At the age of 
twenty-two, he learned the blacksmith's 
trade, which he followed for three years, 
then followed market gardening for fifteen 
years, and subsequently engaged in general 
farming on rented land. He married Tabi- 
tha Waite, who was born April 18, 1797, a 
daughter of Peleg G. and Mary (Greene) 
Waite, the former born October 23. 1761, 
the latter March 24, 1766. Mrs. Waite 
was a niece of General Greene, of Revolu- 
tionary fame. She and her husband also 
removed from Rhode Island to Rensselaer 
county. New York, at an early day, going 
by waj- of the marked trees along the regu- 
lar Indian trail. In their family were ten 
children, whose names and dates of birth 
were as follows; Greene, September 26, 
1784; Clark G., April 3, 1787; Marcey, 
April 4, 1789; Thomas, May i, 1791; 
Benjamin, April 27, 1793; Alice, July 6, 
1795; Tabitha, April 18, 1797; Mary, April 
30, 1799; Lois, December 8, 1801; and 
Laura, November 4, 1804. All reached 
years of maturity, and in their younger 
days were dressed in clothes spun and 
woven by the mother. The subject of this 
sketch is the older of the two children born 
to Spink and Tabitha (Waite) Matteson. 
The other, Harlow L. Matteson, was born 
in Petersburg, Rensselaer county, August 
2, 1840, and is now living in Clark county, 



Illinois. He wedded Mary Etta Odell, who 
was born in the same place and died in 
1879, leaving two children, Giles B. and 
Oren. Subsequently he married Henrietta 
Eager, of Forreston, Ogle county, Illinois, 
by whom he has three children: Laura 
Winnifred, Harrison Pager and Glenn Har- 
low. He owns a good farm of one hundred 
and sixty acres in Clark county. 

Our subject spent the first twenty-two 
years of his life in the county of his nativity, 
attending school in winter until seventeen 
and assisting in the farm work during the 
summer. When fourteen his parents moved 
to the town of Petersburg, where he was 
sent to school. Under the old rate bill at 
that time those who paid the school tax on 
all ta.xable property were allowed to send 
their children to school during the winter, 
while those who refused were not. In the 
summer there was generally enough public 
money to carry on the schools without the 
special ta.x. After leaving school he worked 
at odd jobs of various kinds, but principally 
farming. At the age of twenty-two he went 
to Granville township, Washington county. 
New York, where he worked by the month 
for two years. There he was married and 
subsequently engaged in farming on rented 
land for eight years. Coming to Illinois in 
March, 1868, he purchased his present farm 
in Kockvale township. Ogle county, of E. J. 
Waite, of South Oregon, and here has since 
made his home while engaged in agricultural 
pursuits. 

On the 20th of November, 1859, Mr. 
NLitteson was united in marriage with Miss 
Sarah M. Northrup, who was born in Gran- 
ville township, Washington county. New 
York, October 13, 1842, a daughter of John 
H. and Elvira (Eldred) Northrup, also na- 
tives of that place, the former born in 1813, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



165 



the latter in 1828. The father, who was a 
farmer by occupation, was a son of Clark 
and Mary (Holmes) Northrup, natives of 
Londonderry, New Hampshire, and New 
York, respectively. Their children were 
Reynolds, Carr, Sarah, Mary, Penelope, 
Elizabeth, Annie, Emeline, John H. and 
Ephraim. Mrs. Matteson is the second in 
order of birth in a family of ten children, 
the others being Josephine, James C, Pen- 
elope H., Mary Elizabeth, Chloe E. , Addie 
and Emma, twins, John Carr and William 
R. The father of these children died in 
June, 1894, at the age of eighty-one years, 
and the mother passed away in May, i88g, 
at the age of sixty-one. 

Five children have been born to Mr. 
and Mrs. Matteson. John C, born in Gran- 
ville, Washington county. New York, April 
9, 1862, was married February 20, 1886, 
to Katherine Elizabeth Taylor, who was 
born in Racine county, Wisconsin, Septem- 
ber 16, 1864, a daughter of T. D. and Mary 
(Kirkham) Taylor, natives of Massachusetts 
and England, respectively. To John C. 
Matteson and wife have been born five chil- 
dren: Charles Edward, born November 
27, 1S86, died at the age of three months; 
Clark Valentine, born February 14, 188S, 
and Mary Permelia, born J(me 3, 1890, are 
attending the district schools; John Dwight, 
born February 27, 1893, and Henry Albert, 
born May 31, 1896, are both at home. 
Charles Ferdinand, the second child of our 
subject, was born September 17, 1864, and 
died of measles March 21, 1877. The third 
died in infanc}'. Emma E., born October 
25, 1869, died July 8, 1870. The fifth died 
in infancy. 

In his political views Mr. Matteson is a 
pronounced Republican, and he has been 
honored with a number of important official 



positions in his township, being clerk for 
fourteen years, school treasurer nine years, 
school director a short time, road commis- 
sioner one term, pathmaster a number of 
years, and justice of the peace for the past 
seven years. His official duties are always 
most faithfully and conscientiously per- 
formed. Socially he belongs to Oregon 
Lodge, No. 420, F. & A. M., Rock River 
Chapter, No. 151, R. A. M., and Economy 
Camp, No. 131, M. W. A., in which he has 
passed through the various chairs. He has 
also been vice-president of the Old Settlers 
Association, and a member of the Repub- 
lican county central connnittee. His esti- 
mable wife holds membership in the Meth- 
odist Episcopal church of Oregon. 

Mr. Matteson can relate many interest- 
ing incidents of early pioneer days and of 
life in the east. He was in the midst of 
the Anti-Rent Indian troubles of Rensselaer 
county. New York. This land was owned 
by the heirs of Rensselaer, and they re- 
fused to sell any of the land to the settlers, 
preferring to rent at high rates. The set- 
tlers finally took the law into their own 
hands, and, dressed as Indians, they would 
haress and bother the collectors and agents, 
sometimes tarring and feathering them until 
they had secured their demands to be per- 
mitted to purchase the land upon which 
they lived. He also lived there when Mill- 
erism was at its height, when the people of 
that denomination tore down their churches, 
expecting Christ to come October 22, 1843. 
Mr. Matteson also has a very clear reciillec- 
tion of the old training days of the state 
militia. One company had a brass cannon, 
captured when General Burgoyne surren- 
dered. His great-grandfather, Warren Mat- 
teson, was a gunner in the Revolution. Our 
subject has one of the first geographies pub- 



1 66 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



lished in the United States, containing only 
a map of New England. He still has in his 
possession Noah Webster's Third Reader, 
published in 1802; The Principles of the 
Government of the United States, by Par- 
don Davis, in 1823; an old campmeeting 
songster, 1S36; a rhetoric reader, 1835; 
a Bible which belonged to his grandfather 
Waite, printed in Edinburg, Scotland, in 
I79i;and Bunyan's Holy War, printed by 
John Melcher, in 1794. Besides these 
cherished possessions he has a pewter plat- 
ter, which his paternal grandmother owned, 
also a cup and saucer, soup tureen, neck- 
erchiefs, and thread that she spun. He 
also has the Masonic apron and sash which 
belonged to his father over sixty years ago, 
and many other interesting relics relative to 
the early pioneer and Revolutionary days. 



HARVEY M. SHOEMAKER.— The fine 
farm belonging to this gentleman on 
section 15, Eagle Point township, invariably 
attracts the eye of the passing traveler as 
being under the supervision of a thorough 
and skillful agriculturist, and a man of good 
business qualifications. He is one of the 
most extensive stock dealers and shippers 
in Ogle count}', and always carries forward 
to successful completion whatever he under- 
takes. He was born November 27, 1839, 
on the farm where he still resides and has 
borne his part in the development and up- 
building of this region. 

Pierson Shoemaker, the father of our 
subject, was born in Butler county, Ohio, 
January 16, 1 809, and was a son of Michael 
and Elizabeth (Long) Shoemaker, the former 
of German, the latter of English descent. 
The great-grandfather of our subject on the 
paternal side was an early settler of New 



Jersey, where Michael Shoemaker was born, 
but at an early day the latter removed to 
Ohio and later to Indiana, becoming pio- 
neers of both states. During his youth 
Pierson Shoemaker learned the carpenter's 
trade, which he followed in early life. In 
1828 he removed to Union county, Indiana, 
and later to Sullivan county, that state, 
where he was married, November 20, 1833, 
to Miss Elizabeth Parker, who was born on 
the Blue Ridge mountains in Grayson 
county, Virginia, February 18, 1S09. Her 
father, Lemuel Parker, was one of the first 
settlers of Sullivan county, Indiana, where 
he removed from Tennessee on horseback. 
Soon after his marriage, in 1833, Mr. Shoe- 
maker came to Illinois, and after spending 
the winter in the vicinity of Peoria, in the 
spring of 1834, he took up his residence in 
Ogle county. At that time the country be- 
tween his home and Galena and Dixon was 
almost an unbroken wilderness, and the In- 
dians, who were still quite numerous here, 
stole his team of horses, leaving him only 
a yoke of oxen to break and improve his 
land. He was the first settler in his part of 
the country, and his nearest neighbor 
was a Mr. Kellogg, of Buffalo Grove, 
who located there in 1833. Mr. Shoe- 
maker secured a claim of about three hun- 
dred and twenty acres in Eagle Point town- 
ship, built a log house, and at once turned 
his attention to the improvement and cul- 
tivation of his land. He entered a half- 
section and when the land came into market 
he purchased it from the government. La- 
ter he built a commodious residence, haul- 
ing the pine lumber, doors and windows 
from Chicago, and all of his marketing in 
early days was done either in that city or 
Galena, it requiring fourteen days to make 
the round trip to Chicago. Although he 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



16; 



came to the county empty-handed, he suc- 
ceeded in accumulating a handsome prop- 
erty by his own labor, enterprise and good 
management. He was a successful farmer, 
a substantial and reliable citizen, and be- 
sides his farm owned good business property 
in Polo. From his farm, he removed to 
that place and erected the Orient House, 
which he successfully conducted for twenty- 
five years. He was one of the original 
members of the brick United Brethren 
church, which was located on his land, hav- 
ing deeded it to the church for their house 
of worship and cemetery. He was a con- 
sistent Christian and an active church work- 
er. He died in Polo, July 3, 1890, at the 
age of eighty-two years, his wife October 
19, 1892, at the age of eighty-three, and 
both were laid to rest in the brick Church 
cemetery, Eagle Point township, where a 
monumenthas been erected to their memory. 

In their family were the following chil- 
dren who reached years of maturity: El- 
mer, deceased, was married and lived in 
Eagle Point; Mary wedded Dr. M. C. Mc- 
Pherson, who engaged in the practice of 
medicine in Eagle Point, but both are 
now deceased; Joseph died at the age of 
twenty-one years; Harvey M. is the ne.xt of 
the family; J. M. is a resident of Califor- 
nia; Laura is the wife of Joel B. Busvvell, 
of Elk Horn township; Sarah is a resident 
of Polo; Lemuel died in Florida, January 
30, 1899; and Elizabeth is the wife of E. 
C. Williams, of Polo. 

Amid pioneer scenes, Harvey M. Shoe- 
maker passed his boyhood and youth on 
the old home farm and is mostly self-edu- 
cated as his early school privileges were 
limited. He and his brothers helped to 
operate the farm, and after his father's re- 
moval to Polo, he took charge of the same, 

18 



which he later purchased. To its further 
improvement and cultivation he has since 
devoted his attention in connection with 
stock feeding and dealing. He feeds from 
one hundred to one hundred and eighty 
head of steers for the market and about 
two hundred head of hogs annually, and 
ships his own stock. So successful has he 
been in his life work, that he is now the 
owner of seven hundred acres in one body 
and improved with two sets of farm build- 
ings. 

In Stephenson county, Illinois, April 6, 
1865, Mr. Shoemaker was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Marian P. Rowand, who was 
born, reared and educated in Ogle county. 
Her father, Andrew Rowand, was a native 
of Scotland, born near Paisley, and when 
a young man came to America in 1832, lo- 
cating first in Canada, where he partici- 
pated in the Rebellion. There he married 
Miss Elizabeth Losson, a Scotch lady, who 
came to the new world on the same vessel 
as her future husband. In the fall of 1838 
they went to New York, and the following 
spring came to Ogle county, Illinois, Mr. 
Rowand buying land and developing a farm 
in Eagle Point township. There he passed 
away in the winter of 1887, and Mrs. Shoe- 
maker's mother died in 1 8 54. To our subject 
and his wife have been born three children: 
Andrew P. , residing on the home farm with 
his father, married Nellie Smith, who died 
leaving one son, Harvey B. Elizabeth W. 
and Marian P. are also at home. 

Since casting his first presidential vote 
for Abraham Lincoln, Mr. Shoemaker has 
been a stanch supporter of the Republican 
party, but has never cared for the honors 
or emoluments of public office, though he 
most efficiently served as highway commis- 
sioner for about fifteen years. His wife and 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



daughters are members of the United Breth- 
ren church, and the family is one of prom- 
inence socially in their community. Mr. 
Shoemaker is widely and favorably known 
as an upright, reliable business man whose 
word is considered as good as his bond. 



JOHN E. KINDELL, a most progressive 
and successful agriculturist, is the owner 
of a beautiful farm on section ii, Byron 
township. Ogle county. His methods of 
farm management show deep scientific 
knowledge combined with sound practical 
judgment that the results show that "high 
class " farming as an occupation can be 
made profitable as well as pleasant. 

Mr. Kindell was born on the 15th of 
April, 1835, in Miami county, Ohio, and is 
a son of Joseph Kindell, who was born on 
Sherman creek, in Pennsylvania, and there 
grew to manhood. The grandfather, Jos- 
eph Hunter, was also a native of Pennsyl- 
vania and was one of the first settlers of 
Miami county, Ohio. The father, with two 
brothers, John and William Kindell, cleared 
farms in that county, and all became quite 
well-to-do. Joseph Kindell's place com- 
prised three hundred and sixty acres of rich 
and arable land, and to its development and 
cultivation he devoted his energies until 
called to his final rest in 1851. In Miami 
county, he married Miss Martha Hunter, 
who was also a native of the Keystone state 
and removed to Ohio with her father. 
Eleven children blessed this union, seven 
sons and four daughters, of whom si.x sons 
and three daughters reached years of ma- 
turity. James, the eldest, was a soldier of 
the Civil war and after that struggle re- 
moved to Iowa, later to Kansas and finally 
settled in Arkansas. Rev. William was a 



minister of the United Brethren church, la- 
bored earnestly for its interests and died in 
Mercer county, Ohio. David was also a 
soldier of the Civil war and now resides in 
Iowa. John E., of this review, is the ne.xt 
of the family. Martha is the wife of Will- 
iam Manchester, a veteran ot the Civil war 
residing in Iowa. Joseph is living in Lima, 
Ohio. Baxter is a farmer in Iowa. Alexan- 
der is a farmer in Ohio. Samuel also makes 
his home in Iowa. Mary E. died at the 
age of ten years. Priscilla died in Mercer 
county, Ohio. 

On the home farm in Ohio, John E. 
Kindell passed his boyhood and youth and 
was given fair common-school advantages, 
attending school during the winter months 
and aiding in the farm work during the 
summer season. He was married in Pick- 
away, Miami county, Ohio, August 27, 
1857, to Miss Jenet Stuart, who was born 
near Edinburg, Scotland, a daughter of 
James and Ellen (Simpson) Stewart, na- 
tives of the same country. Mrs. Kindell's 
paternal grandfather was quite wealthy and 
belonged to the nobility. The father was 
given good school privileges, being educated 
in Edinburg for the ministry, but after his 
marriage he located on a farm in his native 
land and devoted his attention to agricult- 
ural pursuits for a few years. In 1842 he 
emigrated to America and settled at Paris, 
Illinois, where he took up six hundred and 
forty acres and built thereon a large frame 
house and had it well furnished, but after 
residing there for about three years, he 
rented the place and located near Cincin- 
nati, Ohio. Being in poor health he con- 
templated returning to Scotland, but died 
near Cincinnati. Mrs. Kindell, who was 
principally reared and educated in Ohio, was 
one of a family of six children, all born in 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



169 



Scotland. Ellen Sprong, the eldest, is still 
a resident of Ohio. Elizabeth married a 
Mr. Zider, a noted educator, who died in 
St. Louis, Missouri. Mary is the wife of 
Thomas Flummer, of Braymer, Caldwell 
county, Missouri. John enlisted in an Ohio 
regiment during the Civil war and served 
for six months. In the fall of 1861 he came 
to Illinois with our subject and his wife and 
after being here for about a year he re-en- 
listed in Company C, Seventy-fourth Illi- 
nois Infantry. He was wounded at Spring 
Hill and Franklin, Tennessee, and died 
from the effects of the same. 

Mr. and Mrs. Kindell have become the 
parents of eight children, namely: Walter, 
a railroad man, is married and resides in 
Farmland, Indiana; William L. married' 
and located in Elgin, Illinois, where he 
worked in the watch factory, but died at 
home at the age of twenty-three years; 
Augustus E., who is now in the Klondike, is 
married and owns a place near Tacoma, 
Washington; John Stewart is married and 
engaged in farming in Byron township. 
Ogle county; Ida Jenette is the wife of Rob- 
ert Hench, railroad agent at Kent, Stephen- 
son county, Illinois; Rosa Florence is at 
home; Lillie is the wife of Frank Lowe, 
telegraph operator at Byron, on the Great 
Western railroad; and Mary Ellen, at home. 

For two years after his marriage Mr. 
Kindell operated the old home farm in Ohio, 
but in the fall of 1S61 we find him a resi- 
dent of Ogle county, Illinois, where he rented 
land the first year. In the spring of 1862 
he bought eighty acres, of which thirty-seven 
acres had been placed under cultivation, 
fenced and a little frame house erected there- 
on. To the further development and im- 
provement of his place he at once turned his 
attention, and later added forty acres adjoin- 



ing, making a good farm of one hundred and 
twenty acres, on which he has erected a 
large and well appointed house, also good 
barns and outbuildings, has set out forest 
and ornamental trees, and the neat and 
thrifty appearance of the place testifies to 
his careful supervision and his skill in his 
chosen calling. 

The Republican party has always found 
in Mr. Kindell a stanch supporter of its prin- 
ciples, but he is not a politician in the 
sense of office seeking, his time and atten- 
tion being wholly occupied by his business in- 
terest. He has, however, most efficiently and 
satisfactorily served as member of the school 
board for several years. He and his family 
hold membership in the Middle Creek Pres- 
byterian church, and in the best social 
circles of the community they occupy an 
enviable position, while their many friends 
are always sure of a hearty welcome at their 
hospitable home. 



J 



OHN H. PHILLIPS, an active and en- 
terprising farmer residing on section 
16, Lincoln township, is a native-born citi- 
zen of Ogle county, the date of his birth 
being April 13, 1852. His father, Jacob 
Phillips, was a native of Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland, born in 1822, while his grand- 
father, William Phillips, was a native of 
Pennsylvania, but who later settled in Mary- 
land. They both came to Ogle county in 
1844 and together entered three hundred 
and twenty acres of land on section 15, 
Lincoln township, and at once commenced 
the improvement of the tract, and in due 
time had as fine a farm as one would wish 
to see. The grandfather died some years 
after locating here. Jacob Phillips was 
married, November 25, 1847, to Miss Mary 



I/O 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



E. Brantner, a native of Maryland, and 
who grew to womanhood in her native 
state. By this union there were six chil- 
dren that grew to mature years. Lucinda 
is now the wife of Jacob Waltermire, and 
they reside in Marshall county, Iowa. John 
H., of this review, is next in order of birth. 
George W. resides in Gage county, Nebras- 
ka, where hs is engaged in farming. Effie 
Irene is the wife of Elias Henshaw, of Han- 
cock county, Iowa. Lewis A. resides in 
Brown county, Kansas. Samuel C. is liv- 
ing in Nebraska. On the old home place 
the father passed the last days of his life, 
his death occurring July 27, 1887. The 
mother yet resides on the old farm, en- 
joying the love of her children and many 
friends. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 
hood in his native township and was edu- 
cated in the home schools. He remained 
with his father and assisted in the cultiva- 
tion of the farm until the father's death. 
He later bought the interest of the other 
heirs and succeeded to the home farm, 
where he has since continued to live. He 
was married in Freeport, Illinois, February 
21, 1883, to Miss Elizabeth C. McCoy, a 
native of Ogle county, Illinois, born, reared 
and educated in Mt. Morris, and a daughter 
of Walter Bond McCoy, a native of Wash- 
ington county. Maryland, born in 18 16, and 
who grew to manhood in his native county, 
and there married Mary Ann Huyett, a native 
of the same county and state. They moved 
to Ogle county in 1840, and settled in Mt. 
Morris township, where he engaged in farm- 
ing, and where they reared their family. 
Later they moved to Eagle Point, where 
the father died March 30, 1879. His wife 
passed away in 1878. They had a family 
of eight children, seven of whom grew to 



mature years. Sarah J. is the wife of Abra- 
ham South, and they reside in Quitman, 
Nodaway county, Missouri. David is now 
residing with our subject. Mrs. Nancy 
Taylor is now living in Hardin county, Iowa. 
Archibald Franklin resides in Wright coun- 
ty, Iowa. The next living one is Mrs. 
Phillips, wife of our subject. Mary Ann 
married Walter Hedrick, but is now de- 
ceased. Edward died in California, and 
Charles in infancy. 

Immediately after marriage, Mr. and 
Mrs. Phillips took up their residence on the 
farm where they yet reside, and on which 
he has made some substantial improve- 
ments, including the remodeling of the res- 
idence, and the erection of a large barn and 
various outbuildings. Two children have 
come to bless their union — Clarence O. and 
Sylvia N., both of whom are in attendance 
at the home school. 

Politically Mr. Phillips is a stanch Re- 
publican, having given adhesion to that 
party since casting his first presidential 
vote for Rutherford B. Hayes, in 1876. He 
was elected and served six years as consta- 
ble of Lincoln township. He has also 
served as director of his school district, and 
as a delegate to various conventions of his 
party. Fraternally he is a member of the 
camp of Modern Woodmen of America, at 
Haldane. Life-long residents of the county, 
Mr. and Mrs. Phillips take a lively interest 
in all that concerns its well being. Their 
friends are many and they are worthy of the 
esteem in which they are held. 



ELMER E. BAER.— Like many other 
residents within the bounds of Ogle 
county who started out in life with naught 
but an abundance of determination and in- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



171 



defatigable industry, and who have succeed- 
ed through their own diligence, energy and 
economy, we classify the gentleman whose 
name stands at the head of this shetch. 
He was born in Berlin township, Somerset 
county, Pennsylvania, February 26, 1876, 
and the following April his parents removed 
to Carroll county, where our subject was 
reared. He attended the public school at 
Millidgeville, and at the age of thirteen pro- 
ceeded to learn the printer's trade. When 
he was fourteen years old he ended his 
school days and devoted his entire time to 
his trade in the Free Press of Millidgeville. 
This required a period of four years, and at 
the expiration of that time he came to Ro- 
chelle where he worked from the fall of 
1892 until the following spring. He then 
removed to Waterloo, Iowa, and shortly aft- 
erward returned to Illinois, and resided at 
Marseilles until August, 1893. The follow- 
ing year he spent in Millidgeville, Pennsyl- 
vania, and in August, 1894, he entered the 
office of the Register at Rochelle. At the 
breaking out of the Spanish-American war, 
the editor, G. W. Dicus, lieutenant of the 
militia, was called to Porto Rico, and Mr. 
Baer leased the business for the following 
year. Although it has been under his su- 
pervision but a few months, it already shows 
the result of his good judgment and man- 
agement. 

Mr. Baer is the youngest of three chil- 
dren, the eldest of whom died in infancy. 
The second child, Susie M., is the wife of 
A. L. Poffenberger, and resides at Kastota, 
Minnesota. The parents of this family are 
Jacob H. and Mary (Blough) Baer, both of 
Somerset county, Pennsylvania, who came 
west in 1876 and purchased a farm in Car- 
roll county. Mr. Baer was actively en- 
gaged in the management of this property 



till 1885, when he retired from active busi- 
ness life. Six months previous to his death, 
which occurred in 1887, he was manager of 
a hotel in Millidgeville, in which town his 
wife still resides. 

On the 3rd of October, 1898, our sub- 
ject was united in marriage to Emma E. 
Beck, a daughter of John Beck. In politics 
our subject is a stalwart Republican, al- 
ways giving his support to the principles of 
his party. He has never cared for position 
in public office, referring to give his undi- 
vided attention to his business interests. 
He is a keen-sighted and honorable man of 
business, and possesses the confidence and 
respect of the community. 



CYRUS NICODEMUS, an enterprising 
groceryman, has been an important 
factor in the business affairs of Polo for a 
number of years and his popularity is well 
deserved, as in him are embraced the 
characteristics of an unbending integrity, 
unabated energy and industry that never 
flags. He is a leading merchant of the 
city, and as a public-sprited citizen is 
thoroughly interested in whatever tends to 
promote the moral, intellectual and materl 
welfare of the community. 

A native of Pennsylvania, Mr. Nicode- 
mus was born in Woodbury township, Bed- 
ford county, October 2, 1846, a son of 
Conrad Nicodemus and grandson of Jacob 
Nicodemus. The latter was a native of 
Maryland, and was a farmer and lumber- 
man by occupation, owning and operating 
a sawmill. He died about 1856, at the age 
of sixty years, from the efforts of an injured 
leg, which was crushed by a timber falling 
upon it. His wife bore the maiden name of 
Susan Allebaugh. 



i;: 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Conrad Nicodemus was born in Bedford 
county, Pennsylvania, and came west in 
the fall of 1S67 after his children had em- 
igrated to the Mississippi valley. He followed 
farming in his native state and continued to 
engage in the same occupation during the 
nine years of his residence in Ogle county, 
Illinois. From here he moved to Iowa, 
where he lived until 1896, and it was there 
that his wife died December 12, 1881. In 
her maidenhood she was Sarah Hefley, a 
native of Blair county, Pennsylvania, born in 
1819, and a daughter of Samuel Hefley, 
who was born in Maryland and died at the 
age of forty-nine years. In the spring of 
1896, Mr. Nicodemus went to live with a 
daughter in Appleton, Minnesota, where he 
departed this life November 25, 1898, at the 
age of seventy-eight years. Politically he 
was a Democrat, and religiously a faithful 
and consistent member of the Methodist 
Episcopal church. In his family were eight 
children, of whom six are living, our subject 
being the third in order of birth, and with 
the exception of himself all reside either in 
Iowa or Minnesota. 

The boyhood and youth of our subject 
were spent upon his father's farm in Wood- 
bury township, Bedford county, Pennsylva- 
nia, until seventeen years of age, and during 
the winter months he pursued his studies in 
the district schools of the neighborhood. 
In February, 1865, he enlisted in the Ninety- 
ninth Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, and 
was mustered into the United States service 
at Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. The regi- 
ment was first sent to City Point, Virginia, 
and later took part in the battle of Hatchie's 
Run and the siege of Petersburg, and then 
went in pursuit of Lee's fleeing army, re- 
turning by way of Berksville to Richmond. 
P"or three days during this time they were 



without food. It required a twelve days' 
march from Richmond to Washington, Dis- 
trict of Columbia, and at Bailey's Cross 
Roads they were reviewed by General Han- 
cock. On reaching the capital they par- 
ticipated in the grand review, and then 
marched back to Arlington Heights, being 
finally mustered out at Philadelphia June 28, 
1865. 

Mr. Nicodemus returned to the old home 
in Woodbury township, and continued to 
work for his father for a year. On coming 
to Ogle county, Illinois, in September, 1866, 
he stopped first at the Pine Creek settle- 
ment, where he was employed by an uncle 
for eighteen months. On the 7th of Novem- 
ber, 1867, he was married in Pine Creek 
township to Miss Sarah Stauffer, a daughter 
of John E. and Rebecca (Haight) Stauffer. 
Her father is a native of Pennsylvania, and 
is now a retired farmer living in Polo. She 
was born in Sandusky county, Ohio, but 
when a child was taken by her parents to 
Elkhart, Indiana, and in 1865 became a 
resident of Illinois. 

After his marriage Mr. Nicodemus began 
working at the carpenter's trade. He also 
rented a farm, which he operated for six 
years, and then came to Polo, where he 
clerked in a grocery store for ten years. 
At the end of that time he embarked in the 
same business for himself, in partnership 
with Samuel Brenner, who later sold his 
interest to W. W. Kline, the firm remaining 
Nicodemus & Kline for seven years. They 
then sold out to Garman & Handshaw, and 
for the following seven months Mr. Nico- 
demus did nothing while looking around for 
a favorable opening. In company with Mr. 
Newcomer, he bought the store of Mr. 
Woolsey, which they conducted under the 
firm style of Nicodemus & Newcomer for 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



four years, or until January, 1898, when our 
subject sold his interest to his partner. The 
following November he and Lester A. Brand 
purchased a stock of groceries and opened a 
store on E.xchange street, where he is now 
greeting his old friends. He has met with 
a well-deserved success in his business un- 
dertakings, and besides his mercantile in- 
terests he now owns a fine quarter-section 
of land in Iowa. He and his wife attend 
the Methodist Episcopal church of Polo, and 
have the respect and esteem of all who know 
them. Socially he affiliates with the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows, the Knights 
of the Globe and the Grand Army of the 
Republic, and politically is identified with 
the Democratic party. 



HON. JAMES P. WILSON, ex-member 
of the general assembly of the state 
of Illinois, resides on section 10, Woosung 
townslrip. He was born June 7, 1854, in 
Blair county, Pennsylvania, and is the son 
of Franklin and Susan (Dridenbaugh) Wil- 
son, both of whom were also natives of the 
Keystone state. By occupation the father 
was a farmer, and in 1856, when our subject 
was but two years old, he came with his 
family to Illinois and located in Lee coun- 
ty. He later purchased land in Palmyra 
township, that county, which he improved, 
and where the remainder of his life was 
spent, dying there November 4, 1870. His 
wife is yet living, and now makes her home 
in Sterling, Illinois. In their family were 
five children, four of whom lived to matur- 
ity, and three yet living. Theodore met his 
death December 9, 1898, by falling from 
the tower of his windmill in Palmyra town- 
ship, Lee county. Stewart is now living on 
the old homestead in Lee county. Mary 



F., widow of C. C. Fisk, is residing in 
Sterling, Illinois, with her aged mother. 
Rebecca died in childhood. James P., our 
subject, was the youngest of the family. 

On the old homestead, in Lee county, 
Illinois, the subject of this sketch grew to 
manhood, and received his primary educa- 
tion in the public schools of his township. 
He subsequently attended the high school in 
Dixon, Illinois; and completed his school 
life in Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois, 
which he attended in 1872-3-4. Leaving 
school, he taught school in Woosung town- 
ship for a time, and then, in partnership 
with his brother, Theodore, farmed in Lee 
county one year. 

Mr. Wilson was married, February 8, 
1877, to Miss Mary E. Rogers, of Palmyra, 
Lee county, Illinois, daughter of W. L. and 
Hannah (Fellows) Rogers, pioneers of Lee 
county. Her father, a native of Canada, 
settled in Lee count}' in 1839, while the 
Fellows family, who were of Puritan stock, 
from New Hampshire, settled in the same 
county in 1834. By this union were born 
two children — Franklin B., who was a 
graduate, with honors, of the Dixon High 
school, and who was also a student of 
Stienman Commercial College, of Dixon, 
and Jay P. 

In the fall of 1876, Mr. Wilson purchased 
one hundred and sixty acres of land in 
Woosung township, comprising a portion of 
his present farm, and soon after his mar- 
riage moved to the place, making it his 
home to the present time. To his original 
purchase he has added eighty acres, giving 
him an excellent farm of two hundred and 
forty acres. Since coming into his posses- 
sion, he has made many valuable improve- 
ments, keeping up with the times in every 
particular. While he has been successful, 



1/4 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



he has yet met with severe loss. On the 
3d of October, 1896, his fine large barn, 
with its contents of hay, grain and machin- 
ery, was totally consumed by fire, entailing 
a loss of five thousand dollars. He has fol- 
lowed general farming and stock raising, 
and usually feeds from seventy-five to one 
hundred head of cattle per year. He en- 
deavors to consume on the place all the 
grain and hay that he raises. 

In politics Mr. Wilson is an ardent Dem- 
ocrat, a stanch advocate of the principles of 
the Democratic party. Since attaining his 
majority he has taken quite an active part 
in political affairs and has served almost 
continuously in some local office. In 18S1 
he was elected supervisor of the newly or- 
ganized township of Woosung, and his elec- 
tion was contested by citizens of the old 
township of Buffalo, of which Woosung had 
formed a part. The contest was warmly 
pressed, but resulted in the recognition of 
the newly organized township, and con- 
firmed the validity of the election of Mr. 
Wilson. In 1884 he was elected chairman 
of the board of supervisors, a position which 
he filled to the satisfaction of all concerned. 
In 1886 he was elected a member of the 
thirty-fifth general assembly of Illinois, re- 
elected in 1890 and again in 1892. During 
his term he took an active part in the con- 
test between Palmer and Oglesby for the 
United States senate, and which resulted in 
the election of General Palmer. He intro- 
duced a valuable bill, which, however, failed 
of adoption, making railroad and warehouse 
commissioners elective, instead of appoint- 
ive. The measure was carried in the house, 
but defeated in the senate. In 1891 he was 
chairman of the appropriation committee 
and of the revenue committee in 1893. He 
also served on various special committees. 



and was an influential member of the house. 
In educational matters he has always taken 
a commendable interest and for years served 
on the school board. While living in a Re- 
publican legislative district, he has always 
held the respect of his political opponents 
and usually polls a good Republican vote. In 
his home neighborhood his popularity has 
always been great. 



J 



AMES M. CLAYTON is one of the 
many residents of Ogle county who 
started out in life with naught but an abund- 
ance of determination and indefatigable in- 
dustry, and a strong and healthy constitu- 
tion, and who have succeeded through their 
own diligence, energy and economy. He 
is now able in his declining years to lay 
aside all business cares and live retired at 
his pleasant home in Stillman Valley, where 
he is surrounded by all the comforts and 
many of the luxuries of life. 

Mr. Clayton was born in Brimfield, 
Massachusetts, November 18, 18 14, and 
when a young man, through the influence and 
solicitation of an older brother, made appli- 
cation to and had his name changed by a leg- 
islative enactment from Crouch to Clayton. 
His paternal grandfather was of German 
descent and a soldier in the American Rev- 
olution, while the father, Ephraim Crouch, 
who was born and reared in Vermont, took 
up arms against Great Britain in the war of 
1812. When a young man the latter went 
to Massachusetts, where throughout the re- 
mainder of his life he engaged in farming 
and the butcher business. There he mar- 
ried a Miss Stebbens. 

As his parents were in very limited cir- 
cumstances, Mr. Clayton's educational priv- 
ileges were limited, being able to attend 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



175 



school only a few months during the winter. 
His training at farm work was not so 
meager, however, and during his youth he 
worked on the farm of Colonel Brown and 
gave his wages to his father until he reached 
manhood. On the 2nd of April, 1837, in 
company with Colonel Brown, Hon. A. F. 
Brown and Samuel Patrick, he started for 
the Rock river valley, Illinois, going down 
the Hudson river from Hartford to New 
York city, by vessel to Philadelphia, by 
canal to Pittsburg, down the Ohio and up 
the Mississippi rivers to St. Louis, where 
changed boats and then proceeded up the 
Illinois river to Peoria, by team to the Rock 
river and by stage to Dixon. Mr. Clayton 
arrived in Ogle county May 2, and until the 
following August worked by the day at By- 
ron. He next worked by the year for Joseph 
Sanford, and from that gentleman purchased 
a partially improved claim of one hundred 
and sixty acres, on which a log house had 
been constructed. His brother-in-law, Sol- 
omon Small, who arrived here in 1838, lo- 
cated upon the place, while our subject con- 
tinued to work for others for a few years. 
In the fall of 1841, in Byron, Mr. Clay- 
ton married Miss Harriet Norton, who was 
born and reared in New York, and was one 
of a family of ten children, five sons and 
five daughters. Her father. Rev. Isaac 
Norton, a Free Will Baptist minister, set- 
tled in this county in June, 1837. The 
young couple made their home in Byron 
until the spring of 1S42, and when Mr. 
Clayton sold his first place and took a claim 
of one hundred and twenty acres adjoining 
the village of Stillman \^alley, which he 
subsequently entered and still owns. After 
erecting a log house thereon, he mo\ed in 
and began to break and improve his land. 
In 1868 he built a neat, substantial and 



commodious residence, and later erected 
two barns and other outbuildings, set out 
an orchard and a number of forest and or- 
namental trees, and transformed the wild 
tract into a beautiful and attractive farm. 
His financial resources having increased he 
purchased an adjoining farm of one hundred 
and fourteen acres, making in all two hun- 
dred and thirty-four acres of valuable and 
well improved land, which he successfully 
operated for forty years, but now leaves the 
active management of the farm to younger 
hands, while he spends his declining years 
in that ease and retirement which should 
always follow a long and useful career. He 
has lived in Stillman Valley since 1882 and 
there owns two good residences. 

Mr. Clayton has been called upon to 
mourn the loss of his estimable wife, who 
passed away December 12, 1887. Of the 
seven children born to them, three are now 
deceased, two having died in childhood. 
Adelaide, the eldest, is the wife of Wallace 
Revell, a prominent business men of Still- 
man Valley, whose sketch appears else- 
where in this volume. Nellie is the widow 
of Rev. James Robertson, a minister of the 
United Brethren church, and she resides 
in Forreston, Illinois. George is a farmer 
residing in Stillman Valley. Edgar is also a 
farmer of Ogle county. Hattie is the wife 
of Eli Hoysington, a farmer and dairyman 
of Ogle county. Carrie is the wife of William 
Sovereign, formerly a business man of Still- 
man Valley, where he now resides. Lena 
died when a young lady; Delia Ann at the 
age of two years; and William H. at the 
age of three months. 

Politically Mr. Clayton is a stanch Re- 
publican, having supported that party ever 
since its organization. He cast his first 
presidential vote for Martin Van Buren 



176 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



in 1836, and in 1840 supported Tippecanoe 
and Tyler, too. He has never sought or 
cared for official preferment, but when a 
young man once served as constable in By- 
ron. He has ever used his influence to se- 
cure good schools and teachers, and for 
some years was a most efficient member 
of the school board. For si.xty-one years 
he has watched with interest the wonderful 
changes that have taken place in this coun- 
ty, has borne an important part in its up- 
building and development, and his name 
should be among the foremost on its roll of 
honored pioneers. He is one of the 
charter members of the Stillman Valley 
Congregational church and his life has ever 
been such as to commend him to the office 
and respect of all with whom he has come 
in contact either in business or social life. 



SAMUEL IvNODLE, one of Forreston's 
esteemed representative citizens, was 
born in Washington county, Maryland, No- 
vember 21, 1827, where he grew up and at- 
tended school in the district school in the 
neighborhood. In the spring of 1841 he 
came west with his parents to Illinois and 
settled in Mount Morris. The journey was 
a long and tedious one, coming as they did 
by wagon through Cumberland, Wheeling, 
Virginia, Zanesville, Ohio, Crawfordsville, 
Indiana, Attica, Indiana, and through Illi- 
nois by way of Ottawa, until they reached 
their destination. Mount Morris. Upon 
their arrival they found but a few settlers, 
among which were the Hitts, McCoys and 
Meyers. Samuel Knodle's father, Jonathan 
Knodle, was a native of Maryland and was 
born in 1795. His mother, Barbara (King) 
Knodle, was born in 1795 in Pennsylvania. 
His father was a successful mechanic, and 



in the early days, at Mount Morris, manu- 
factured cradles and Hussey reapers, the 
first built in this country. He also had 
shipped to him, from the east, a printing 
press and brought his nephew, Emanuel 
Knodle, west to run it. He for a long time 
printed the Rock River Register, which was 
first published in 1841, and was the first 
publication in Ogle county. Jonathan Kno- 
dle for a period conducted a store in Mount 
Morris, but retired from active business life, 
and lived at ease until his death in 1854. 
Mrs. I\nodle, the mother of our subject, 
died in 1882 at an advanced age and her re- 
mains lie in Mount Morris cemetery beside 
those of her husband. The subject of this 
review had five brothers and two sisters. 
Peter, now deceased, a resident of Mount 
Morris; Jacob, a wagonmaker and painter, 
residing at Mount Morris; Jonathan, a car- 
penter, deceased; Samuel, the subject of this 
sketch; Joseph, a carpenter residing at 
Oregon; Elizabeth, the widow of John Win- 
ders; William, a carpenter, living at Ore- 
gon; Mary Catherine died in infancy. 

Such educational advantages as the 
primitive settlement offered Samuel ICnodle 
secured and after his school days earned his 
living at farm work and teaming until 1S50, 
when with a few companions he set out for 
the gold mines of California. The party 
consisted of Messrs Lott, Fink, Boner, 
Davis, Fouck and Samuel Ivnodle, all living 
in the neighborhood of Mount Morris. 
They set out on their long journey March 
19, 1850, and by tedious travel over land 
arrived at their destination the following 
October. On their way they stopped six- 
teen days at Salt Lake City to rest up, and 
camped at Nevada City, when they set 
to work to dig for gold. Mr. Knodle spent, 
eighteen 3'ears in mining and prospecting in 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



1/7 



California, Arizona, British Columbia and 
Washington. His perilous life as a miner 
and mine-owner was terminated by an ac- 
cident sustained in defending his camp from 
the hostile raids of the Apache Indians. 
In the struggle, four of a party of six were 
killed outright, the remaining two, of which 
Mr. Knodle was one, were severely injured, 
he losing the entire use of his right arm from 
a weapon in the hands of an Indian. After 
the accident he returned to Mount Morris, 
arriving there in 1868. He remained at 
Mount Morris one year, and in 1869 started 
a business in Forreston, which he has con- 
ducted ever since. 

Mr. Knodle is a stanch Republican, and 
cast his first presidential ballot in 1S52, for 
Winfield Scott. It is said that a child is 
unerring in its affections, and the truth of 
the saying is evinced in his popularity with 
the little folks, who greet him as "Uncle 
Sam." Mr. Knodle has witnessed the 
growth of Ogle count}', having been a resi- 
dent since before the era of railroads, when 
as a farm hand he was obliged to haul grain 
to Chicago, and Peru, and groceries from 
Savannah. He is a man of sterling quali- 
ties, of wide experience in human affairs, a 
persistent reader and deep thinker, and be- 
cause of these qualifications, an entertaining 
companion. 



DANIEL SIMS, Sr., one of the honored 
pioneers and highly esteemed citizens 
of Ogle county, has for the long period of 
sixty years successfully engaged in agricult- 
ural pursuits on section 12, Byron township, 
where he has a fine farm of one hundred 
and sixty acres, which he has developed 
from wild land. On coming to the county 
in 1838, the greater part of this region was 



still in its primitive condition, few settle- 
ments having been made and the land was 
raw and unimproved. He has borne an 
active and prominent part in transforming 
the unbroken wilderness into fine farms and 
assisted in opening up the country to civili- 
zation. His first crops he hauled to the 
Chicago market with an ox-team and as 
there were no good roads his team and 
wagon often got stuck in the mud. 

Mr. Sims was born in Luzerne county, 
Pennsylvania, August 31, 1S17, and is a 
son of John Sims, a native of the same 
count}', who was a soldier of the war of 
1 8 12 and was stationed on Long Island. 
For his services in that struggle he received 
a land warrant. In Luzerne county he 
married Miss Catherine Hoover, a native of 
New Jersey, and in 1838 they emigrated to 
Ogle county, Illinois, where the father 
bought a claim of about eighty acres and 
opened up a farm in B}'ron township, mak- 
ing a number of improvements on the same 
and continuing its cultivation for some 
years. Here his wife died, but his death 
occurred in Iowa, where he made his home 
during his last days. Daniel is the oldest 
of their children, six sons and five daughters, 
all of whom grew to manhood and woman- 
hood, but only three sons and two daughters 
are now living. 

Daniel Sims was reared in Bradford 
county, Pennsylvania, and had but limited 
school privileges, so that he is mostly self- 
educated. During his youth he began 
working as a farm hand, and throughout life 
has devoted his energies to agricultural pur- 
suits. On coming to Ogle county in 1838 
he entered eighty acres of government land 
on section 12, Byron township, and later 
purchased an adjoining tract of eighty acres, 
which he has converted into a highly culti.- 



178 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD, 



vated and well improved farm. His first 
home, which was a little log cabin, has 
long since been replaced by a comfortable 
frame residence and good and substantial 
outbuildings have also been erected. 

Mr. Sims was married in Ogle county, 
in 1S45, to Miss Christina Bunton, 
a native of Dundee, Scotland, where 
she continued to make her home un- 
til eighteen years of age. Eleven children 
were born of this union, but only the follow- 
ing are now living: Mrs. Mary Ferguson, a 
widow living in Iowa, Henry, a resident of 
Nebraska; David and Albert, also of Ne- 
braska; Jessie, wife of James Turner, of 
Byron township, Ogle county, and Daniel 
living in Iowa; Ella grew to womanhood 
and married, but is now deceased; while the 
others died in childhood. 

Originally Mr. Sims was an old-line 
Whig in politics, casting his first vote for 
William Henry Harrison in 1840, but since 
the organization of the Republican party 
he has been one of its stalwart supporters. 
Religiously he and his wife are consistent 
members of the Middle Creek Presbyterian 
church, and by all who know them they 
are held in high regard. 



GEORGE MURRAY.— Canada has fur- 
nished to the United States many 
bright, enterprising young men who have 
left the Dominion to enter the business cir- 
cles of this country with its more progress- 
ive methods, livelier competition, and ad- 
vancement more quickly secured. Among 
this number is Mr. Murray, one of the most 
enterprising and progressive farmers and 
stock breeders of Ogle county, his home 
being on section 17, Buffalo township. 

Mr. Murray was born near TorontO) On- 



tario, Canada, November 15, 1850, and is 
a son of Thomas Murray, a native of Scot- 
land, born in the city of Edinburg, Septem- 
ber 26, 181S. When a young man the 
father caine to the new world, locating in 
Ontario, Canada, in 1836, and there he fol- 
lowed the blacksmith's trade throughout the 
remainder of his life, dying January 17, 
1 866. He was married in Canada, in March, 
1848, to Miss Louisa Graham, also a native 
of Scotland, her birth occurring in Dum- 
frieshire, June 28, 1826. She crossed the 
Atlantic with a brother and also took up 
her residence in Ontario. She survived her 
husband for thirty years, spending her last 
days with her son in Illinois, where she 
passed away January 27, 1S96. She was 
the mother of eight children, five sons and 
three daughters, of whom four sons and two 
daughters are still living, namely: Mary, 
who acts as housekeeper for our subject; 
George, of this review; Thomas, a farmer 
of Holcomb, Ogle county; John, who is 
married and engaged in farming in Lee 
county, Illinois; Robert; and Mrs. Margaret 
Copenhaver, who also resides with our sub- 
ject and has two sons, George and Robert. 
George Murray was reared in Ontario, 
Canada, and received a good common-school 
education, which well fitted him for life's 
responsible duties. As a young man he 
came to Illinois, in 1S72, and took up his 
residence in Taylor township. Ogle county, 
where for one year he worked by the month 
as a farmhand. He then rented a farm, which 
he operated for the same length of time. 
Since then he has given the greater part of his 
time and attention to the breeding of fine 
stock, in partnership with his brother import- 
ing and dealing in pure-blooded Percheron, 
Clydesdale and French coach horses. The 
firm of Murray Brothers became well-known 




JOHN H. NYE. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



I8l 



among breeders and dealers in different 
states and they sold their horses quite ex- 
tensively throughout the west, doing a large 
and profitable business. The partnership 
was dissolved in iS86, but our subject con- 
tinued to engage in the business until 1893. 
His first purchase of land consisted of 
seventy-five acres in what is now \\'oosung 
township, but after residing there for three 
years, he sold the place and in 1881 located 
upon his present farm, consisting at that 
time of one hundred and eight-two acres. 
Upon the place he has made extensive im- 
provements, which add greatly to its value 
and attractive appearance, making it one of 
the most desirable farms of the locality. He 
has enlarged its boundaries so that they now 
contain two hundred acres of valuable land 
under a high state of cultivation and im- 
proved with a large neat residence, corn 
cribs, granaries, barns, etc. He has also 
given considerable attention to the raising 
of Galloway cattle, and still feeds annually 
from one to four car loads of cattle and a 
car load of hogs for the market. He start- 
ed out in life for himself with nothing but 
his own indomitable energy and through his 
own efforts has acquired a comfortable com- 
petence, being to-day one of the substantial 
men of the county. 

Mr. Murray cast his first presidential 
vote for Grover Cleveland and continued to 
affiliate with the Democracy until 1896, 
when he supported William McKinley, the 
Republican candidate. For a number of 
years he has served as a member of the 
school board and has been president of the 
district. He is also connected with the 
library association and has served as one of 
its trustees and directors. He and his sis- 
ters hold membership in the Independent 
Presbyterian church of Polo, and he is also 



a member of the Knights of the Globe. 
He is held in high regard by all who know 
him, and he has a host of warm friends 
throughout the county. 



JOHN H. NYE, deceased, was for many 
years a well known and highly esteemed 
citizen of Ogle county. He was a native of 
England, born near Dover, and was the 
son of James and Harriet Nye, both of 
whom were natives of the same country, 
the father there spending his entire life. 
He was a pipemaker by trade. After the 
death of her husband, his widow came to 
the United States, afterwards marrying a 
Mr. Marsh, her husband being a farmer in 
Lincoln township, Ogle county, where her 
death occurred in 1S76, when about sev- 
enty-eight years old. 

John H. Nye received his education in 
the common schools of his native land. 
At the age of nineteen he came to the 
United States, landing in New York, where 
he spent the succeeding three years learning 
the carpenter's trade, apprenticing himself 
to a Mr. Beebe. He then came to Ogle 
county and located in Mt. Morris. This 
was in 1853. His first work here was for Mr. 
Marston, who had the contract for the car- 
pentry work on the seminary, then in course 
of construction. After leaving Mr. Marston 
he engaged in business for himself, locating 
just southeast of the village. He continued 
contracting and building until i860, when he 
commenced farming in Mt. Morris township, 
on a farm the property of his wife, com- 
prising two hundred and twenty acres. He 
later purchased a farm of one hundred and 
sixty acres in Lincoln township, which he 
rented, while still continuing to remain 
upon the farm in Mt. Morris township. In 



I 82 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



1867 he left the farm with his family and 
removing to Mt. Morris he lived a retired 
life until 1882. 

On the 2d of October, i860, Mr. Nye 
was united in marriage with Miss Catherine 
Coffman, born in Washington county, Mary- 
land, July 24, 1820, and daughter of James 
and Anna (Palmar) Coffman, natives of 
Pennsylvania. By occupation he was a 
farmer. In 1S40 he came to Ogle county 
and located in Pine Creek township. With 
his family he came through by team, in a 
large wagon, usually called a "prairie 
schooner." They passed through Virginia, 
Ohio and Indiana, and were si.x weeks (// 
route, although they stopped some two 
weeks near Dayton, Ohio. The greater 
portion of the land was yet owned by the 
government, and believing there was a great 
future for the country, Mr. Coffman pur- 
chased six quarter-sections in Ogle county, 
and nearly as much in Sangamon county, 
paying the government price of one dollar 
and twenty-five cents per acre. This land 
he at once commenced to improve, and in 
1842 built a small brick house for occu- 
pancy, brick being more easily obtained 
than lumber, as there was a brick-yard 
within six miles, while lumber had to be 
hauled from Chicago. The previous year, 
however, he erected a gristmill on Pine 
creek. On settling here their nearest neigh- 
bor was three miles away and their market 
was Chicago. On the present site of Mt. 
Morris there was but one solitary building, 
afterwards known as the old seminary build- 
ing. This building remained until a few 
years ago. 

James and Anna Coffman were the par- 
ents of eight children. Edward married 
Catherine Price, and they became the par- 
ents of ten children. They lived in Pine 



Creek township, where he died in 1889. 
By occupation he was a farmer. Catherine, 
widow of our subject, was next in order of 
birth. Barbara married Daniel Sprecher 
and to them were born eleven children. 
They are both deceased. Aaron died in 
California in 1894. He was prospector. 
Sarah married David F'earer, who is now 
deceased. She is the mother of six chil- 
dren and now resides in Kansas. Susan 
married John Widney, and to them were 
born three children. They are living in 
Ohio, where he is farming. David mar- 
ried Susan DePue, by whom he had two 
children. He died many years ago. James 
Coffman, the father, was not permitted to 
live to see the great changes that have 
since taken place in Ogle county, his death 
occurring in April, 1847, while yet in the 
prime of life. His wife survived him sev- 
eral years. Both were highly esteemed, 
and their death was a sad loss to the new 
country in which they had cast their lot. 

To our subject and wife two children 
were born. Frank Coffman, born Novem- 
ber 21, 1 86 1, was a young man of more 
than ordinary ability, a graduate of Mt. 
Morris College. He died in Dakota, June 
3, 1886, greatly lamented by a large circle 
of friends. Ulysses, born April 12, 1864, 
married Ella Green, of Chicago, who died 
in Califcjrnia in 1896. He received his lit- 
erary education in Mt. Morris College, and 
is a graduate of the Chicago Musical Col- 
lege. He is a teacher of music of marked 
ability. At present he is employed in the 
postoffice at Mt. Morris. Our subject first 
married Miss Maria Beebe, by whom he had 
four children — Sarah, Harriet, Emma and 
Anna. 

In November, 1882, Mr. Nye moved 
with his family to Beadle county, South 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



183 



Dakota, and entered a homestead of one 
hundred and sixty acres, and a tree claim 
of one hundred and sixt}' acres. In 1S93 
they left Dakota and returning to Illinois, 
located in Mayvvood, a suburb of Chicago, 
where they remained until January, 1896, 
when they went to Los Angeles, California. 
In that beautiful city, on the 28th of Feb- 
ruary, 1 898, Mr. Nye passed to his reward. 
He was a devout member of the Methodist 
Episcopal church, and died in the hope of 
the resurrection. Fraternally he was a 
Mason, and politically a Republican. 

A few weeks after the death of her 
husband, Mrs. Nye left Los Angeles, and 
after visiting relatives in Douglas county, 
Kansas, in April, following, returned to her 
old home in Mt. Morris, where she is sur- 
rounded by many of her old friends, and 
where she can make the most of this life. 
Like her husband, she is a consistent mem- 
ber of the Methodist Episcopal church, a 
true Christian woman. 



ORLO W. NORTON.— When after years 
of long and earnest labor in some hon- 
orable field of business, a man puts aside all 
cares to spend his remaining years in the 
enjoyment of the fruits of his former toil, it 
is certainly a well deserved reward of his 
industry. 

"How blest is he who crowns in shades like 
these 
A youth of labor with an age of ease, " 
wrote the poet, and the world everywhere 
recognizes the justice of a season of rest fol- 
lowing an active period of business. Mr. 
Norton spent his last years living retired at 
his pleasant home in Stillman Valley and 
his history is one that shows the accomplish - 
ment of well directed labor. 



He was born in Genesee county. New 
York, June 18, 1835, and was of a family 
of English extraction which was founded in 
Massachusetts as early as 1640. His grand- 
father, Henry Norton, was born in Guilford, 
Connecticut, in 1753, and was one of the 
heroes of the Revolutionary war who par- 
ticipated in the battle of Lexington, where 
the colonial troops won their first victory. 
Gould G. Norton, the father of our subject, 
was born in Vermont, in 1800, and was the 
youngest in a family of six children, five sons 
and one daughter. In 1805 the family re- 
moved to Essex county. New York, and in 
1 816 settled in Genesee county, that state, 
where Gould G. Norton grew to manhood 
and married Mary H}de, a native of the 
Empire state, whither her father, Jesse 
Hyde, had removed from Vermont at an 
early day. Her grandfather was Captain 
Thomas Hyde, of Norwich, Connecticut, 
who held a captain's commission in the Rev- 
olutionary war. 

The father of our subject successfully 
engaged in merchandising and also in farm- 
ing in Genesee county. New York, until 1830, 
when he removed to Orleans county, that 
same state, but seven years later returned 
to the former county, locating in the part 
which afterward became Wyoming county. 
In 1846 he came west and settled in Hart- 
land, Waukesha county, Wisconsin, where 
he resided for two years while traveling for 
a mercantile house. At the end of that 
time he brought his family to Ogle county, 
Illinois, and entered on hundred and sixty 
acres of land in Scott township, where he 
developed a good farm. On their arrival 
here of most the land was still in its primi- 
tive condition, deer and other wild game 
was plentiful, and the few settlers were 
widely scattered, their nearest neighbor on 



1 84 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



the east being nine miles distant. The 
father erected a stone house which is still 
standing and to the improvement and culti- 
vation of his land at once turned his atten- 
tion. Here he spent the remainder of his 
life, dying June 22, 1886, at the ripe old age 
of eighty-six years. His worthy wife passed 
away in April, 1877. He was one of the 
most prominent and influential citizens of 
his community, was a friend of education 
and a stanch supporter of our public schools. 
He was a self-educated as well as a self- 
made man, but by hard study and close 
application he fitted himself for a teacher 
and successfully followed that profession for 
a number of terms. He was supervisor of 
his township ten years, and township trustee 
for a number of years. 

Orlo W. Norton was the oldest in a fam- 
ily of five children, three sons and two 
daughters, all of whom reached years of 
maturity. Emma C. married Hon. O. B. 
Young, of Stillman Valley. Mary E. B., a 
resident of Oakland, California, is a lady of 
superior education and excellent business 
ability. She taught for twenty-five years in 
the Rockford, Illinois, Seminary, and the State 
Normal of California, and is now secretary 
of the Social Settlement in West Oakland. 
Henry B. was educated at the Illinois State 
Normal and was also a teacher by profes- 
sion, being employed in the State Normal at 
Emporia, Kansas, for five years. As his 
health failed he spent two years among the 
Indians and then went to California, where 
he followed his chosen profession for a time. 
He was an ordained minister of the Congre- 
gational church, and often lectured on sci- 
entific subjects. His death occurred June22, 
1885. Gould Hyde Norton, now a resident 
of Eustis, F"lorida, was also engaged at the 
Illinois State Normal, and in 1861 enlisted 



as lieutenant in the Thirty-third Illinois 
Volunteer Infantry, which was largely com- 
posed of teachers and pupils belonging to 
that school and was commanded by the 
president, Colonel Hovey. Mr. Norton 
was wounded by a ball in the breast at the 
battle of \'icksburg, and being unfit for 
further duty he was discharged with the 
rank of captain. Later he moved to Vicks- 
burg and served as captain of police in that 
city. He was the first man to build a 
house at Arkansas City, Kansas, where he 
traded with the Indians on Buffalo range 
for three years. Later he was colonel of 
the First Kansas Cavalry and participated in 
the Indian wars on the frontier. In 1876 
he removed to Florida and has since en- 
gaged in the nursery and orange-growing busi- 
ness. He is a prominent member of the 
Grand Army of the Republic and at one 
time was in command of the department of 
Florida. He had a family of five children, 
four sons and one daughter, of whom three 
sons were in the Cuban war and one was 
killed when fighting with Colonel Roosevelt's 
rough riders. 

Reared in New York, Orlo W. Norton 
obtained a good practical education in the 
common schools of his locality and the high 
school of Varysburg and in early life suc- 
cessfully engaged in teaching in that state. 
In 1845 he accompanied his father on his 
removal to Waukesha county, Wisconsin, 
and three years later became a resident of 
Ogle county, Illinois. He opened up a farm 
in Scott township on the opposite side of 
the road from his father's place, and there 
successfully engaged in agricultural pursuits 
for forty-five years, being recognized as one 
of the most industrious and enterprising 
farmers of the locality. 

On the 25th of January, 1853, Mr. Nor- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



185 



ton was united in marriage with Miss Mar- 
garet Lanckton, who was born, reared and 
educated in Genesee county, New York, and 
engaged in teaching in that state and in 
IlHnois prior to her marriage. Her father 
was Aaron Lanckton, of Wheatville, New 
York. She died in 1862, leaving three chil- 
dren, namely: Ada C, now the wife of Mal- 
colmb D.Norton, of Eustis, Florida; Mary L. , 
wife of Charles H. Tallmage, of Columbus, 
Ohio; and Charles H., who died unmarried 
in Dakota, in 1886, at the age of twenty- 
four years. Mr. Norton was again married 
at Laporte, Indiana, September 21, 1863, 
his second union being with Mrs. Elmira L. 
Carruth, widow of Amos Carruth, and 
daughter of Frederick Palmer, who moved 
to Michigan at an early day. She is also a 
native of Genesee county, New York, and 
was there reared. By the second mar- 
riage there are three children: Harriet 
M. is the wife of Elmer Johnston of Des 
Moines, Iowa; Arthur A. completed the reg- 
ular course and graduated from Harvard 
University with the degree of A. B. in 1898, 
and after taking the post-graduate course at 
that famous institution of learning, had the 
title B. S. conferred upon him, and Edna 
R. is the wife of Harvey Watson, of Nor- 
mal, Illinois. 

In 1893 Mr. Norton rented his farm and 
removed to Stillman Valley, where he pur- 
chased a cottage. Politically he first affili- 
ated with the Free Soil party, but was a 
Republican from the organization of that 
party. His first vote was for Martin Van 
Buren, and in 1856 for John C. Fremont. 
He took an active and prominent part in 
public affairs, especially along the lines of 
education, and for years was a member of 
the school board. He also served as town- 
ship clerk eight years, justice of the peace 
20 



the same length of time and supervisor two 
years, his labors in behalf of his fellow citi- 
zens giving the utmost satisfaction. He 
with his wife held membership in the Con- 
gregational church and stood high in social 
circles of the community. Those who knew 
him best numbered him among their warm- 
est friends, and no citizen in Stillman Val- 
ley was more honored hor highly respected. 
Mr. Norton died October 31, 1898. 



JACOB KAPPMAN.— It is said that biog- 
raphy yields to no other subject in point 
of interest and profit, and it is especially 
interesting to note the progress that has 
been made along various lines of business by 
those of foreign birth who have sought homes 
in America — the readiness with which they 
adapt themselves to the different methods 
and customs of America, recognize the ad- 
vantages offered and utilize the opportunities 
which the new world affords. Such a man 
is Mr. Kappman, who is now one of the 
wealthiest and most prosperous farmers of 
Ogle count}-, his home being on section 20, 
Leaf River township. 

He was born in Hohenzollern, Prussia, 
February 29, 1828, and was there reared to 
manhood, but is self-educated in German as 
well as in the English language. Before leav- 
ing the faiherland he was married, in 1856, 
to Miss Mary Schetter, who was also of 
German birth. In his native land he con- 
tinued to carry on farming until 1S58, when 
he crossed the Atlantic and came direct to 
Illinois, joining his brother, John Kappman, 
who had located here a few years before, 
but later removed to South Dakota. Our 
subject arrived in Ogle county in October, 
1858, and at first rented land, which he 
operated for one year. He then purchased 



1 86 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



a tract of forty acres, on which he now 
resides. The land had been broken, but no 
building erected, and his first home here was 
a small house which he erected. To the 
further improvement and cultivation of the 
land he devoted his entire time and atten- 
tion, but for a few years it was a hard 
struggle to support himself and family. As 
his financial resources have increased, how- 
ever, he has bought more land from time to 
time, until he now owns seven hundred and 
forty-seven acres. His home farm, com- 
prising two hundred and forty acres, is 
improved with a commodious and comforta- 
ble residence, supplied with luxuries. Good 
barns and outbuildings have also been 
erected, and the place is now one of the 
most desirable in the locality. 

Mr. and Mrs. Kappman have a family 
of seven children, four sons and three daugh- 
ters, namely: Adolph, who is married and 
engaged in farming in Leaf River township; 
Christian, at home; Joseph, who is married 
and also carries on operations as an agricult- 
urist in Leaf River township, and William, 
who assists his brother Christian in the op- 
eration of the home farm; Mary, wife of 
William Betz, of Winnebago county, Illi- 
nois; Susan and Anna, both at home. 

In his political views Mr. Kappman is a 
strong Republican, and cast his first presi- 
dential vote for Abraham Lincoln in i860. 
He served as school director in his district 
for several years, but has never cared for 
official honors. In religious faith he and 
his wife are devout Catholics, and helped to 
build the church of that denomination at 
Seward. He is now the possessor of a 
handsome property which now enables him 
to spend his declining years in the pleasur- 
able enjoyment of his accumulations. He 
came to this country in limited circum- 



stances, and with no capital started out in 
a strange land to overcome the difficulties 
and obstacles in the path to prosperity. 
His youth dreams have been more than 
realized, and in their happy fulfillment he 
sees the fitting reward of his earnest toil. 



JAMES H. MAGNE, of Haldane, has 
spent more than a half century of his 
life in Ogle county. He was born in Roch- 
ester, New York, March 30, 1835, and is a 
son of Charles Magne, a native of Connecti- 
cut. The family are of French extraction, 
the first of the name settling in Connecticut 
in a very early day, and there Charles 
Magne, Sr. , the grandfather of our subject, 
was born. He later removed to New York 
and settled near the city of Rochester. Dur- 
ing the second war with Great Britain he 
served his country faithfully, and was 
wounded at the battle of Oueenstown 
Heights. His death occurred in 1835. 

Charles Magne, the father of our sub- 
ject, grew to manhood in New York, but 
returned to Connecticut and there married 
Mary A. L. Noble, a native of that state. 
He was a ship carpenter by trade, and soon 
after his marriage moved to New York city, 
where he was employed at his trade. In 
1847 he came west with his family and lo- 
cated at Buffalo Grove, Ogle county, where 
he remained two years engaged in carpentry 
work and in farming. He then moved to 
what is now Lincoln township, bought one 
hundred and sixty acres of land near the 
present village of Haldane and opened up a 
farm. He later added eighty acres to his 
tract, giving him a fine farm of two hundred 
and forty acres, which he improved. He 
there spent the last years of his life, dying 
in February, 1857, at the age of forty-eight 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



187 



years. His wife survived him and reared 
the family, passing to her reward in 1S95, 
at the age of eighty-two years. They had 
a family of three sons and three daughters, 
who grew to mature years, our subject be- 
ing the eldest. The others were Charles 
A., living retired in Haldane; Lucretia E. 
Mantle, of Brookville township; Horace, 
living retired in Polo; Abalena, who died a 
single lady; and Adaline, now deceased, who 
married Gavin R. Cross, of Ogle county. 

James H. Magne came to Ogle county 
with his parents when a lad of thirteen years 
and here grew to manhood, assisting his 
father in opening up and operating the home 
farm. Before leaving his native state he 
secured a fair education in the common 
schools, but the greater part of his knowl- 
edge has been obtained since attaining his 
majority by reading and observation. After 
his father's death he remained with his 
mother and carried on the farm, and cared 
for her in her declining years. He later 
sold his interest in the farm to the other 
heirs and then purchased a farm of eighty 
acres between Maryland and Haldane, to 
which he removed and further improved the 
place. He remained on that farm until his 
removal to the village of Haldane, in 1894. 
While on the farm he was engaged to some 
extent in buying and selling stock for a few 
years. Purchasing residence property in 
Haldane, he rebuilt and remodeled the 
house and now has a very neat and com- 
fortable home. 

Mr. Magne returned east, and, in Clin- 
ton county, Penns}'lvania, January 27, 18S1, 
married Miss Emma J. Wilson, a native of 
that county and state, where she was 
reared and educated. She is the daughter 
of Joseph B. Wilson, a stonemason by 
trade and a native of Pennsylvania. He is 



now deceased, but his widow is now living 
with Mrs. Magne. By this union there was 
one child, Linus E. , a student of the home 
school. 

Politically Mr. Magne is a Prohibition- 
ist, but was originally a Democrat, casting 
his first presidential vote for James Buch- 
anan, in 1856. From the fact that he con- 
siders the liquor traffic the worst foe to 
society, he has given his adhesion to the 
Prohibition party, the only party that is 
fighting the gigantic evil. By casting his 
vote with that party he believes that he is 
at least registering his will, and that the 
party is e.xercising an educational influence. 
Mrs. Magne is a member of the Evangelical 
church of Haldane. When he came to 
Ogle county there was little to give promise 
of the great future before this section of 
the country. There was not a railroad in 
the state, and very few towns of any im- 
portance. Farm houses were few and far 
between, and the whole country was almost 
in its virgin state. He has lived to see a 
change that the most optimistic person 
could not have conceived, and while his 
part may have been a humble one he has 
done what he could in the change that has 
been accomplished. 



ISAAC SPENCER, who resides on section 
10, Eagle Point township, is a well- 
known farmer and stock raiser, one who is 
numbered among the pioneers of northern 
Illinois, having been a resident of this sec- 
tion since 1839. He was born near Collins- 
ville, Connecticut, January 31, 1832, and 
is the son of Naaman and Diantha (Ben- 
ham) Spencer, both of whom were natives 
of the Nutmeg state. The paternal grand- 
father, John Spencer, was also a native of 



iS8 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



the same state, but the family is of Enghsh 
origin. 

Naaman Spencer grew to manhood in 
his native state, and his marriage with 
Diantha Benhim was celebrated July i6, 
i8i I. In early life he learned the cooper's 
trade, and also the trade of a miller, follow- 
ing one or the other occupations while yet 
residing in the east. In 1833 he moved 
with his family to Bradford county, Penn- 
sylvania, cleared and opened up a little 
farm, and there remained until 1839, when 
became to Illinois, and settled on the north 
side of Elkhorn grove, in Carroll county, 
where he rented a small place, and there 
resided for some five or si.x years. He then 
purchased a claim of forty acres, where his 
son now resides, on which was a log house, 
and about thirty acres of the land having 
been broken. He there began to farm, and 
at the same time worked at the cooper's 
trade, erecting a small shop, where he made 
flour barrels, and carried on quite a busi- 
ness. The product of his shop he would 
haul principally to some river point and sell 
the same. When the land came into mar- 
ket he made his entries and secured his 
title. On that farm he spent the last years 
of his life, dying January 3, 1873, when 
nearly eighty-five years old. His wife 
passed away September 11, 1861. They 
had a family of four sons and four daughters 
that grew to mature years. William mar- 
ried and settled in Stephenson county, but 
is now deceased. Fanny married Elias 
Woodin, but is now deceased. Alanson 
settled at Elkhorn Grove, but is now de- 
ceased. Allen is a resident of Eagle Point 
township. Mrs. Lucinda Jenkins is a 
widow, residing in Iowa. Naaman is a resi- 
dent of Milledgeville, Illinois. Diantha 
married Lewis Porter, but both are now d?' 



ceased. Mrs. Clarinda Case, a widow, re- 
siding in Eagle Point township. Isaac, the 
subject of this review, is the last in order of 
birth. 

Isaac Spencer was but nine years of age 
when he accompanied his parents to Illi- 
nois, and but fourteen when his father set- 
tled on the farm where he now resides. His 
education was obtained in the pioneer 
schools of Carroll and Ogle counties, but 
his attendance in the school room was not 
of long duration. He remained at home 
and assisted his father in the shop and on 
the farm until after he had attained his ma- 
jority. He was married on the 26th of Sep- 
tember, 1 86 1, to Romelia Maxwell who, 
was born in the town of Delhi, Delaware 
county. New York, February 25, 1832, and 
daughter of Heman and Paulina (Ballard) 
Maxwell, the former a native of Delhi, Del- 
aware county. New York, and the latter of 
Bridgeport, Connecticut. In 1S40, Henry 
Maxwell moved with his family to Chautau- 
qua county, New York, where they lived a 
few years, and then moved to Pennsylvania. 
In 1850 they came to Illinois, and located 
in Eagle Point. He was a wagon-maker by 
trade, and followed that occupation at 
Eagle Point for some years. He lost his 
wife in 1875, and later moved to Red Oak, 
Montgomery county, Iowa, where his death 
occurred in i S83. 

After his marriage, Mr. Spencer took 
charge of the home farm, and has since 
made many valuable improvements to it in 
the way of a new dwelling, barn, storehouse, 
etc., and has now a well improved and val- 
uable place. In addition to general farm- 
ing, he has given attention to raising good 
graded stock, and is accounted one of the 
successful farmers of the township. 

Politically Mr. Spencer is a stanch Re- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



189 



publican, having been an advocate of the 
principles of the party since its organization. 
He has never wanted nor would accept any 
office, willing at all times that others should 
have the honors and emoluments attached 
to office holding. W'hen he came to north- 
ern Illinois, it was indeed a wilderness, and 
in the sixty years he has resided here he has 
witnessed changes hard to realize, changes 
as wonderful as were ever wrought by Alad- 
din's lamp. In the transformation he has 
borne his part. 



ALEXANDER ANDERSON, residing on 
section 7, Woosung township, is the 
owner of one hundred and ninety-seven and 
a half acres of as fine land as there is in the 
township. He is a native of Ogle county, 
born on the home farm in Woosung town- 
ship, June II, 1872, and is the son of Alex- 
ander and Agnes (Spence) Anderson, both 
of whom were natives of Scotland, and who 
came to the United States in 1850, coming 
direct to Ogle county and locating in Eagle 
Point township, where he engaged in farm- 
ing for about three jears. He then moved 
into Woosung township, purchased eighty 
acres of unimproved land, and at once com- 
menced the establishment of a permanent 
home, and there resided until death. He 
was a very successful farmer, and from time 
to time added to his estate until he had si.x 
hundred and forty acres of fine land, the 
greater part of which was under cultivation. 
As a breeder of stock, he was likewise suc- 
cessful, and always had on his place many 
head of cattle and hogs. He was not a 
member of any church, but was reared in 
the Presbyterian faith. A man of retiring 
disposition, he did not force either himself 
or his views on others, and therefore never 



asked or sought public office. In politics 
he was a thorough Republican. His death 
occurred August 27, 1S87, and his remains 
were laid to rest in the East Jordan ceme- 
tery. His wife is yet living, and is yet re- 
siding upon the old home farm. They 
were the parents of two children: Alex- 
ander, our subject; and Ellen E., who is 
still at home with her mother. 

James Anderson, the paternal grandfa- 
ther, also a native of Scotland, came to the 
United States the same year as did the fa- 
ther of our subject, and made his home with 
him until his death in 1866. In his family 
were five sons and one daughter. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 
hood on the old home farm, and in the pub- 
lic schools of the neighborhood received his 
education. This was supplemented, how- 
ever, by a course in the business college at 
Dixon, Illinois. He was thus well prepared 
for the active duties of life. He was but 
fifteen years old when his father died, leav- 
ing the care of the large estate to him, since 
which time he has cultivated and superin- 
tended the -farm, meeting with fine success. 
Like his father before him, he has shown 
himself a thorough and reliable farmer, 
practical in all things. He ships from one 
hundred to two hundred hogs per year, be- 
sides one or two car loads of cattle. He 
has shown himself a man of superior char- 
acter and business ability, strong in his in- 
herited Scotch characteristics of integrity 
and thrift. 

In politics Mr. Anderson is a Republican, 
and since the spring of 1898 he has filled 
the office of township clerk. In religion he 
is connected with the United Brethren 
church, and is an active worker in both the 
church and Sunday-school. He is president 
of the Young People's Society Christian En- 



I go 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



deavor, Rock River conference of United 
Brethren in Christ, and is trustee of the 
United Brethren Camp Grounds of Polo. 
Fraternally he is a member of the Knights 
of the Globe, and has passed all the chairs 
in the local lodge. He is also a member of 
Polo Lodge, I. O. O. P., of which he is 
past grand; and of Polo Encampment, No. 
117. While yet a young man, he is well- 
known in various parts of the county and 
has many friends. His home is one of the 
best in the township, and his farm one of 
the best improved. 



MATTHEW P. BULL, an enterprising 
agriculturist of Ogle county, is the 
owner of a fine farm on sections 6 and i i, 
Byron township, and his management of 
the estate is marked by the scientific knowl- 
edge and skill which characterize the mod- 
ern farm. The Bull family is of English 
descent and was among the pioneer settlers 
of Chester county, Pennsylvania. At an 
early day our subject's great-grandfather, 
Richard Bull, removed to Perry county, the 
same state, and opened up a farm on which 
the grandfather, William Bull, and father, 
John Bull, were both born, the latter in 
1794. There he grew to manhood and 
when the war of 181 2 broke out he joined 
the army, being stationed most of the time 
at Buffalo as private clerk to his colonel. 
He was married in Perry county to Miss 
Jane I^inn, also a native of the county, and 
a daughter of William Linn. Upon the old 
homestead they resided many years, but 
finally sold and came west, arriving in Ogle 
count}-, Illinois, May i, 185 1. Here Mr. 
Bull purchased three hundred acres of land 
and developed the farm on which his son 
now resides. He erected good and substan- 



tial buildings upon his place, and success- 
fully engaged in its operation until called 
from this life in September, 1S63, at the 
age of si.\ty-nine years. His wife died in 
Pennsylvania about 1846, before the emi- 
gration of the family to Illinois. The fam- 
ily of this worthy couple consisted of twelve 
children, ten of whom, two sons and eight 
daughters, reached years of maturity, but 
only our subject and two sisters are now 
living, — Mrs. Jane Milligan, of Mason City, 
Iowa; and Elizabeth G., a resident of Ro- 
chelle, Illinois. Our subject's only brother 
was Robert Henry, who married and owned 
and operated a nice farm in Ogle county, 
on which he died in 1875. 

Matthew P. Bull was also born on the 
old homestead in Perry county, Pennsyl- 
vania, April 9, 1833, and was provided with 
a good common school-education, which 
was supplemented by a year's attendance 
at the Bloomtield Academy. He was eight- 
een years of age when he accompanied the 
family on their removal to Illinois, and was 
of great assistance to his father in opening 
up the new farm and preparing it for plant- 
ing. On the death of the latter he suc- 
ceeded to a part of the estate and he and 
his brother subsequently bought an adjoining 
farm. For some years they engaged in their 
cultivation together, but finally the property 
was divided and our subject still lives on 
the old home farm. He has enlarged and 
remodeled the residence, built a large barn 
and good outbuildings and made many other 
valuable improvements upon the place, and 
is acknowledged to be one of the best and 
most successful farmers of the community. 
In connection with general farming he has 
also been engaged in raising a good grade of 
stock and is now interested in the milk busi- 
ness. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



191 



In Byron township, December 17, 1873, 
was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Bull 
and Miss Mary E. Linn, the only daughter 
of John R. Linn, another of Ogle county's 
early settlers, formerly from Pennsylvania. 
Mrs. Bull was born and reared in the Key- 
stone state, and by her marriage to our 
subject has become the mother of si.x chil- 
dren: John L., who died in 188S, at the 
age of fourteen years; Margaret Isabelle, a 
music teacher, at home; Roberta, who is 
engaged in school teaching and also resides 
at home; Mary R. and Nancy M., twins, 
who are attending the Rockford high school ; 
and Grace Grant, a student in the home 
school. 

Since the organization of the Republican 
parry in 1S56, Mr. Bull has been one of its 
stanch supporters, but he has never sought 
nor desired political preferment. As a 
friend of education and our public school 
system, he has ever used his influence to 
secure good schools and teachers and for 
some years was a most active member of 
the school board. He and his wife hold 
membership in the Middle Creek Presbyte- 
rian church and their lives have been such as 
to commend them to the confidence and 
esteeni of all who know them. 



GEORGE POOLE is a retired farmer 
residing in Polo. He was born near 
Toronto, Canada, January 31, 1835, and is 
the son of William and Nancy (Johnson) 
Poole, the former a native of county Wex- 
ford, Ireland, born in May, 1803, and the 
latter near Toronto, Canada, May 12, 1814. 
William Poole was the son of George Poole, 
a hatter by trade, and likewise a native of 
Ireland, who came to America in middle 
life and established himself in business at 



his trade in Cincinnati, Ohio. He remained 
there a few years, then came to Ogle coun- 
ty, Illinois, making his home with his son, 
William, until his death in 1859, at the age 
of eighty-six years. His wife died in the 
old country. They were the parents of five 
children, all of whom grew to maturity. 

William Poole grew to manhood in his 
native country, and after coming to America 
learned the the carpenter's trade. At the 
age of twenty-one years he started for Amer- 
ica, taking passage in the sailing vessel 
Maria, and was twice shipwrecked. He 
finally landed in America, going direct to 
Toronto, Canada, where he worked a year 
or two for an uncle who advanced the 
money for his passage across the ocean. 
After being released from this obligation, he 
commenced work at his trade, at which he 
continued until the spring of 1839, when he 
came to Ogle county, Illinois, and located 
in what is now Brookville township. He 
came here with his brothers-in-law, John 
Lawrence and John Sanborn, and jointly 
they secured about eight hundred acres of 
land, for which they paid the government 
price of of one dollar and twenty-five cents 
per acre, besides paying the squatter's claim, 
as nearly all the land in this vicinity had 
been settled on by squatters, who located on 
it for the purpose of holding until they could 
sell out to some actual settler. On the di- 
vision of the tract about three hundred acres 
went to Mr. Poole. Not a rod had been 
turned and he must make every improve- 
ment necessary. He first erected a stone 
house on his portion and then started to 
break and cultivate. He there continued 
farming until his death, which occurred 
September iS, 1886, at the age of eighty- 
three years. In 1834 he married Miss 
Nancy Johnson, both of whom were natives 



192 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of Pennsylvania. Abraham Johnson was by 
occupation a farmer, and when but a lad he 
entered the British service in the Revolu- 
tionary war as a wagon boy. His wife's 
father, Mr. Hommon, was killed by an 
Indian, about one-half mile from Fort Fred- 
erick. To William and Nancy Poole were 
born six children, — George, Abraham, Jo- 
seph, John, Catherine and one who died in 
infancy. In politics William Poole was an 
Abolitionist, and with the Free Soil party 
acted until the organization of the Repub- 
lican party, the principles of which were so 
nearly identical with those he had been 
advocating, that he gave adherence to the 
new party, believing that with it the coun- 
try would the sooner become in reality a 
free country. He was not an office-seeker, 
but served one term as justice of the peace 
and was road commissioner for a time. 
Religiously, he was an Episcopalian. His 
wife is still living at the age of eighty-five 
years and is making her home with our sub- 
ject. 

George Poole was but four years of age 
when he accompanied his parents to Ogle 
county, and here he has since continued to 
reside, a period of sixty years. He was ed- 
ucated in the school at Old Town, and was 
one of the first pupils to attend the school 
at that place. The first teacher was John 
Frisbie. He continued to attend school, 
principally in the winter months, until he 
was twenty years old, in the meantime as- 
sisting in the farm work. He then gave his 
whole time to his father, and continued to 
work for him until he was twenty-six years 
old. 

On the nth of October, iS6o, Mr. 
Poole was united in marriage with Miss 
Sabina Strock, born July 22, 1836, in Bed- 
ford county, Pennsylvania, and daughter of 



Jacob and Catherine (Longnecker) Strock, 
the former a native of Franklin county, 
Pennsylvania, born in 1806, and the latter 
of Bedford county, in the same state, born 
in 1 8 10. They came to Ogle county in 1854 
and settled in Buffalo township, where Mr. 
Strock engaged in farming, at which he con- 
tinued for some years. Later he removed 
to Polo, where he lived a retired life, and 
where his death occurred in November, 
1882. His wife died in 1895, at the age of 
eighty-five years. They were the parents 
of nine children — Sabina, Henry, John, 
David, Nancy, Susanna, Abram, Elizabeth 
and Jacob. All are yet living. To our sub- 
ject and wife four children have been born, 
one of whom died in infancy. The living 
are Frank, Nellie and John. 

On his marriage, Mr. Poole received from 
his father a small farm and at once commenced 
its cultivation. After living there for seven 
years, he sold the same and purchased a 
farm of three hundred acres on sections 13 
and 14, Eagle Point township, where he re- 
sided until his removal to Polo, in 1892. 
In his farming operations he was quite suc- 
cessful, and was regarded as one of the 
leading farmers in the township. He car- 
ried on general farming and stock raising, 
including the raising of short horn Durham 
cattle, Poland China hogs, and Norman 
draft horses. His farm was always kept 
under a high state of cultivation, and every- 
thing about the place showed that it was 
under the care of a practical man. 

After years of hard toil, Mr. Poole con- 
cluded that he would retire and live a less 
active and laborious life. In 1895-6, he built 
his present fine residence on Barber avenue. 
Polo, which is the abode of hospitality. In 
politics he is an ardent Republican, and has 
served his fellow citizens in various local 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



193 



offices. For eleven years he was supervi- 
sor of Eagle Point township, and was a 
member of the board when the railroad 
trouble of the county was at its height. He 
was a valuable member of the board, and his 
services were appreciated by the people of 
his township, as is attested by his continual 
re-election. An energetic, enterprising man, 
he was always willing to work for the best 
interest of his township and county. He 
was greatly esteemed throughout the county. 



M' 



ORTIMER S. BREWSTER. — The 

natural advantages of this section at- 
tracted at an early day a superior class of 
settlers — thrifty, industrious, progressive 
and law-abiding — whose influence gave per- 
manent direction to the development of the 
locality. Among the worthy pioneers of 
Ogle county the Brewster family holds a 
prominent place. The results of the labor 
and self-denial of these early settlers are 
manifest in the comfortable homes and fer- 
tile, well-arranged farms which we to- 
day see. 

It was August, 1S37, that Mr. Brewster 
arrived in this county, and he has since 
taken an active and prominent part in its 
development. His life has been devoted to 
agricultural pursuits and he is still success- 
fully carrying on the old homestead on sec- 
tion I, Byron township. He was born in 
Broome county. New York, August 8, 1820, 
and is a son of James Brewster, a native of 
Connecticut. The grandfather, David Brew- 
ster, was born in one of the New England 
states and when quite young entered the 
Continental army daring the Revolutionary 
war. At an early day he removed with his 
family to the Empire state, where James 

21 



Brewster grew to manhood. In Albany 
county. New York, the latter married Miss 
Chloe Palmer, who was also a native of 
Connecticut, but removed with her parents 
to the former state when young. For some 
years he followed farming there and then 
removed to Bradford county, Pennsylvania, 
where he was similarly employed for a few 
years. In 1837 he came to Illinois by way 
of the Erie canal and Great Lakes, and 
proceeding thence by team finally arrived 
in. Ogle county, where his friend and old 
neighbor, Mr. York, had located a year or 
so previously. Mr. Brewster rented land 
the first summer and then took a claim of 
about four hundred acres on section I, By- 
ron township, entering three hundred and 
twenty acres when the land came into mar- 
ket. Subsequently he sold some of his land 
but improved a farm of two hundred acres 
and made it his home until called to his 
final rest. He built a log house in which 
the family lived while he opened up and de- 
veloped the farm, but it has since been re- 
placed by a more commodious frame resi- 
dence. He died at the ripe old age of 
eighty-four, having survived his wife some 
years. In their family were ten children — 
three sons and seven daughters — all of 
whom reached years of maturity, but only 
our subject and his sister Caroline are now 
living. 

Mortimer D. Brewster was a lad of sev- 
enteen years when he accompanied the fam- 
ily on their removal to this state and in the 
task of converting the wild land into a rich 
and productive farm he bore an active part. 
His school privileges were limited and he is 
mostly self-educated. He remained under 
the parental roof and on his father's death 
took charge of the farm, which has been his 
home for sixty-one years. It is one of the 



194 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



best improved and most highly cultivated 
places of the locality. 

In Roscoe, Illinois, in 1856, Mr. Brew- 
ster was married, the lady of his choice be- 
ing Miss Caroline Alden, a native of Brad- 
ford county, Pennsylvania, who in 1S37 
came with her father, Adonijah Alden, to 
Ogle county, settling in Marion township, 
near Byron. They have become the parents 
of six children, all living: Henry M., cash- 
ier of the Farmers & Merchants bank of 
Byron; Willis J., who is helping to carry 
on the home farm; Augusta and Edwin P., 
twins, the former the wife of Daniel Sims, 
of Cherokee county, Iowa, and the latter 
at home; Walter H., who is married and 
engaged in teaching at Saint Ann, Illinois; 
and Luciaus D. , at home. 

In politics Mr. Brewster was originally 
a Whig, casting his first presidential ballot 
for the candidate of that party in 1844, and 
since its dissolution he has been an ardent 
Republican. He and his wife are faithful 
members of the Middle Creek Presbyterian 
church and are held in high regard by all 
who know them for their sterling worth and 
many excellencies of character. 



ANDREW NEWCOMER, deceased, 
came to Ogle county in 1846, and for 
a period of nearly forty years occupied a 
prominent position in the community, and 
with an acquaintance as extensive as any 
man in the county. He was born No- 
vember 25, 1 8 10, in Washington county, 
Maryland, and was a descendant of Wolf- 
gang Newcomer, who came from Germany 
to America more than a century ago. His 
boyhood was spent in his father's mill, when 
not in attendance in the common schools. 
In his youth he learned the carpenter's 



trade, which occupation he followed for 
about fifteen years after attaining his ma- 
jority, working in various places in the 
states of Maryland and \^irginia. Many of 
the public and private buildings in those 
states show the mark of his handiwork. In 
the fall of 1832 he located in the town of 
Boonsborough, Maryland, and immedialely 
afterward united with the Methodist Episco- 
pal church. His conversion was thorough 
and genuine, and he soon commenced tak- 
ing an active interest in the work of the 
church and in the affairs of the community, 
becoming prominent in all lines of benevo- 
lent work, which prominence was main- 
tained while residing in the place. During 
the winters of 1832-3-4, he taught school, 
and during the summers worked at his 
trade. 

Mr. Newcomer was first married May i, 
1S34, to Eliza Hamilton, a sister of Rev. 
William Hamilton, D. D., of the Baltimore 
conference of the Methodist Episcopal 
church, and an aunt of Ex-Governor W. 
T. Hamilton, of Maryland. She died April 
2, 1875, at Mt. Morris, Illinois, On the 
2 1st of March, 1S76, Mr. Newcomer mar- 
ried Sarah E. Smith, in Winnebago county, 
Illinois. 

Mrs. Newcomer was born February 6, 
1827, in Luzerne county, Pennsylvania, and 
is the daughter of Samuel and Rebecca 
(Reynolds) Rose, the former a native of 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the latter 
of New Jersey. By trade her father was a 
hatter, but after his marriage he removed 
to the country and engaged in farming, an 
occupation that he followed until his death, 
March 18, 1844. In October following, his 
widow moved with her family to Winne- 
bago county, Illinois, settling in Rockford. 
Samuel and Rebecca Rose were the parents 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



195 



of seven children — David, Benjamin, Ann, 
Maria, Saraii E. , Samuel and Jacob, all of 
whom are deceased, with the exception of 
Maria and Mrs. Newcomer. In her native 
state the latter received a good common- 
school education. She was first married 
September 29, 1846, to Lucius J. Smith, a 
native of Ohio, then residing in Rockford, 
and a son of John and Maria (Ferris) Smith, 
also natives of Ohio. Immediately after 
their marriage they moved to a farm in 
Winnebago county, where Mr. Smith en- 
gaged in farming for two years. They then 
removed to Stephenson county, where he 
bought a farm of one hundred and twenty 
acres, and there they lived until his death, 
October 4, 1S67. They became the parents 
of six children, two of whom are deceased. 
Frances A., born May 28, 1S47, married 
Jefferson Stephens, of Winnebago county, 
Illinois. They later moved to Fillmore 
county, Nebraska, where he died in August, 
1880. She is now living in Mt. Morris. 
Arthur L. married Eliza Ackers, August 18, 
1 878, and they now reside in San Francis- 
co, California, where he is employed as a 
traveling salesman. Edward died in in- 
fancy. Volney E. died at the age of sixteen 
years. Emily L. lives at Mt. Morris. Frank 
C. married Emma Yearing, of Trenton, 
Missouri, May 24, 1887, and they live in 
Colorado Springs, Colorado, where he is the 
division superintendent of the Rock Island 
railroad. After her husband's decease Mrs. 
Smith remained on the farm for seven years, 
and then removed to Winnebago, Winnebago 
county, Illinois, where she was living at the 
time of her marriage with Mr. Newcomer. 
Lucius J. Smith was a good, Christian man, 
a member of the Methodist Episcopal 
church, one ever ready to lend a helping 
hand to those in distress, and his house was 



the abode of hospitality. He was a well- 
read man, and kept himself posted on the 
events of the times. He was honored and 
beloved by all who knew him. 

While yet residing in Boonesborough, 
Maryland, for a short lime during the years 
1843-4, ^^^- Newcomer was connected with 
the publication of "The Odd Fellows." 
The western fever was upon him, however, 
and hearing good reports from his old 
friends and neighbors who had settled in 
Ogle county, Illinois, he determined to emi- 
grate. Accordingly, in 1846, he came to 
Mt. Morris, and soon afterwards opened a 
furniture store and undertaker's establish- 
ment, a business in which he continued 
about twenty years. Selling his furniture 
store in 1867, he embarked in the grocery 
trade in which he continued until his death. 
May 20, 1885. 

The death of no man in Mount Morris 
ever affected the community more deeply 
than that of Andrew Newcomer, for he was 
public official and private citizen. In poli- 
tics he was a Republican, a firm believer in 
the principles of the party. He served his 
township as a member of the board of super- 
visors, and from 1S52 until his death he was 
almost continuously a justice of the peace. 
Few men ever served in the latter office 
with more signal ability, and few, if any, of 
his decisions were ever overruled by the 
higher court on appeal. He also served as 
school director and school trustee at dif- 
ferent times, and in other official capacities. 
His business qualifications were more than 
ordinary, and his honesty was not ques- 
tioned. There are few men whose names 
appear oftener on the records of the pro- 
bate court than does that of Andrew New- 
comer as executor, administrator or guardian. 
When he thus served it was certain that 



iQfi 



THE BIOGRArniCAL RECORD. 



every duty would be conscientiously per- 
formed. His social qualifications were of a 
high order. Genial in manner, kind in dis- 
position, old and young delighted to be in 
his society. He was an e.xcellent reader, 
having few equals outside of the professional 
ones, and it is said that during the civil war 
he would get his daily paper, and going to 
his store he would be followed by a crowd, 
who would gather around him and listen 
while he read the latest war news. He 
never lost interest in his church, and at all 
times served his local church in some official 
capacity, either as class leader, steward, 
trustee, or Sunday school superintendent. 
No call of the church was by him unheeded. 
He was a firm believer in the cause of his 
Master, and was ever ready to render the 
best service in his power. He died in the 
full assurance of of a blessed resurrection. 



TAMESD. ANDERSON, a representative 
<J and prominent farmer and stock raiser 
of Ogle county, makes his home on section 
3, Eagle Point township, and owns and oper- 
ates over four hundred acres of valuable and 
well improved land. He has been a resi- 
dent of the county since 1845 S-"*^ 's, there- 
fore, numbered among its honored pioneers. 
Mr. Anderson was born in the town of 
Andes, Delaware county. New York, Octo- 
ber 12, 1842. His father, John Anderson, 
was a native of Scotland, born in 1807, and 
was a son of Joseph and Jane (Clark) Ander- 
son, also natives of that country, where 
they spent their entire lives. The grand- 
father was a millwright by trade and reared 
a family of eleven children. I-ieared in his 
native place, John Anderson received a com- 
mon-school education and in early life 
worked in his father's mill. In 1832 he 



emigrated to the new world, landing in 
Nova Scotia, whence he proceeded to Dela- 
ware county. New York, where he worked 
as a millwright and also engaged in farming. 
He was a natural mechanic and built a mill 
in that county. There he was married, 
September 18, 1834, to Miss Margaret Sim, 
who was also born and reared in Scotland. 
Her father, Ale.xander Sim, a native of the 
same country, was an early settler of Dela- 
ware county. New York. In 1S45 Mr. An- 
derson came to Ogle county, Illinois, and 
made a permanent location upon the farm 
where our subject now resides. He entered 
a tract of eighty acres from the government 
and built a small house, where he resided 
for some years. He also erected a shop in '* 
Eagle Point and engaged in wagon making 
and repair work. Later he removed the 
shop to his farm and continued to carry 
on business there while opening up and im- 
proving his farm. As he prospered in his 
new home, he purchased more land from 
time to time until he owned about three 
hundred acres. He built a large, neat resi- 
dence thereon and made many other im- 
provements, which added greatly to its 
value and attractive appearance. He was 
in limited circumstances when he came to 
the county and by his own labor, enterprise 
and perseverance he succeeded in acquiring 
a comfortable home and competence. He 
continued to make his home upon his farm 
throughout the remainder of his life, but 
died in Rockford while on a visit, March 
21, 1886. Two years previously he and 
his wife celebrated their golden wedding, at 
which time a large number of their friends 
and neighbors were gathered together at 
their home to wish them joy. Mrs. Ander- 
son departed this life June i, 1892, and was 
laid to rest by the side of her husband in 




JAMES ANDERSON. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



20 1 



Fairmont cemetery, where a monument has 
been erected to their memory. They had a 
host of warm friends in this community and 
were held in high regard by all who knew 
them. Politically, Mr. Anderson was a 
stanch Republican, and was called upon to 
fill a number of official positions of honor 
and trust, including that of justice of the 
peace, which he filled for a number of 
years to the entire satisfaction of the public. 

James D. Anderson, of this review, is 
the fourth in order of birth in a family of 
seven children, the others being as follows: 
Joseph A., who is married and resides in 
Wasco county, Oregon; George, who is 
with his brother in that state; Jane A., wife 
of G. J. Monroe, of Dysart, Iowa; John, 
who is married and is engaged in contract- 
ing and building in Chicago; Nettie A., 
widow of \V. W. Pierce and a resident of 
Polo; and Margaret C, wife of George 
Gibbs, of Ogle county. 

James D. Anderson was only three years 
old when brought by his parents to Ogle 
county, where he grew to manhood on the 
home farm and was educated in the common 
schools. During early life he assisted his 
father in the farm work and in 1868 took 
charge of the place and business. After the 
death of the latter he purchased the inter- 
ests of the other heirs in the old homestead 
which he still owns and operates. He has 
added to it more land until he now has 
about four hundred acres, which he has 
placed under a high state of cultivation and 
improved in an excellent manner. He has 
built one of the largest and most conven- 
iently arranged barns in the county. He 
also has a very large cattle barn, good out- 
buildings, windpumps, etc., so that it might 
well be numbered among the model farms 
of the county. For the past twenty years, 



Mr. Anderson has made a business of feed- 
ing stock and annually fits for market from 
two to si.\ car loads of stock, usually having 
from sixty to one hundred head of cattle upon 
his place and from one hundred to one hun- 
dred and fifty head of hogs. He is one of the 
most successful farmers and stockmen of 
the county and usually ships his own stock. 

In Brookville township. Ogle county, Mr. 
Anderson was married, April 2, 18S5, to 
Miss Addie L. Gibbs, who was born, reared 
and educated in this county, a daughter of 
Leonard Gibbs, one of its early settlers. 
They now have two children: Grace B. and 
McKinley J. 

In politics, iSIr. Anderson has been a 
life-long Republican, and his fellow citizens 
recognizing his worth and ability have often 
called him to office. He is now serving his 
eighteenth year as commissioner of high- 
ways, has been treasurer the same length 
of time, and has served as collector of his 
township and as a delegate to the county 
and congressional conventions of his party. 
For twenty-five years he has been con- 
nected with the Eagle Point Mutual Fire 
Insurance Company and is now serving as 
its president. He is past grand of Polo 
Lodge, I. O. O. F., and socially is quite 
popular. In all the relations of life he has 
been found true to every trust reposed in 
him, and he enjoys the confidence and es- 
teem of all who know him. 



JOHN GRAHAM is one of the leading 
and influential citizens of Leaf River 
township, his home being on section 11, and 
he has taken an active part in promoting 
the substantial improvement and material 
development of the county. Although an 
adopted son of America, his loyalty is above 



202 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RPICORD. 



question, for during the dark days of the 
rebellion he offered his services to the gov- 
ernment and for three long years followed 
the old flag to victory on southern battle 
fields. 

A native of Ireland, Mr. Graham was 
born near the city of Belfast, in County An- 
trim, in 1832, and was there reared to man- 
hood. Deciding to come to America in 
1856 he took ship at Belfast for Liverpool, 
England, where he boarded a sailing ves- 
sell, which was five weeks in crossing the 
broad Atlantic. They encountered some 
severe storms, the mast was blown away, 
and the vessel was almost a complete wreck 
when it arrived in New York. In April of 
that year, Mr. Graham found employment 
in a brickyard at Newburg, Orange county, 
New York, but the following fall proceeded 
to Ohio, where he remained only a short 
time, however. He spent the winter at 
Freeport, Ilhnois, and the following year 
found work in the harvest fields. He then 
worked for a Mr. Carpenter in Ogle county 
until after the outbreak of the Civil war. 

Prompted by a spirit of patriotism, Mr. 
Graham enlisted in 1S62, in Company B, 
Seventy-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, 
which was assigned to the Army of the Cum- 
berland. He participated in many import- 
ant engagements and skirmishes, including 
the battles of Perryville, Kentucky, and 
Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where they 
fought for nine days, fighting the old year 
out and the new year in. He was also in 
the battles of Lookout Mountain and Mis- 
sionary Ridge, from there marched to 
near Knoxville. At Murfreesboro the regi- 
ment lost heavily and Mr. Graham was 
wounded in the left cheek, his eye being 
badly injured. He did not give up, how- 
ever, and later took part in the battles of 



Resaca, Jonesboro and Kenesaw Mountain. 
At the last named battle he was again 
wounded, the bone in his right leg below the 
knee being terribly shattered. This per- 
manently disabled him, and he was sent to 
the hospital at Louisville, Kentucky, whence 
he was later transferred to the hospital at 
Quincy, Illinois. When discharged in June, 
1865, he was still obliged to use crutches 
and he has never fully recovered from his 
injuries. 

Returning to the home of Mr. Carpenter 
our subject remained there for two or three 
years, and when sufficiently recovered he 
resumed farm work. On the 8th of March, 
1873, he was united in marriage with Miss 
Catherine Shriber, a native of Schuylkill 
county, Pennsylvania, and a daughter of 
Christian Shriber, who removed from that 
state to Ogle county and became one of the 
successful farmers of this region. He died 
in March, 1890, and his wife, who survives 
him, is living in Lightsville, a hale old lady 
of eighty- four years. To Mr. and Mrs. 
Graham have been born four children: Rosa 
J . , Lilly Dora, Ervin Seymour and Ernest M. 

For a few years after his marriage, Mr. 
Graham operated rented land and then re- 
moved to the farm on which he now resides. 
Although he began life in this country in 
limited circumstances, he has steadily 
worked his way upward until he is now the 
possessor of a comfortable competence. 
His success has been achieved through his 
own well directed efforts and the assistance 
of his estimable wife, who has proved a true 
helpmeet to him. He now has a fine farm 
of over two hundred acres of rich and arable 
land. In his political affiliations he is an 
ardent Democrat, but he has never cared 
for the honors or emoluments of public office, 
preferring to gi\e his undivided attention to 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



203 



his business interests. He is a man of in- 
trinsic worth, esteemed in all the relations of 
life, and has a host of warm friends in Ogle 
county. 



NELSON B. KIDDER, the efficient 
supervisor of Woosung township, is 
one of the leading farmers of Ogle count)', 
owning a fine farm of two hundred and sixty 
acres in Woosung township, and some three 
hundred and twenty acres in Jordan town- 
ship, Whiteside county, Illinois. His home 
farm is on section 7, Woosung township, 
which is a highly improved place, with 
everything in the best order. He is a na- 
tive of New Hampshire, born in the town 
of Bristol, Grafton county, January i 5, 1 834, 
and is the son of Benjamin and Mary 
(Doton) Kidder, both of whom were na- 
tives of the Granite state. Benjamin Kid- 
der was by occupation a farmer in his native 
state, and after his removal to Illinois. 
With his family, in 1856. he left his native 
state and came to Whiteside county, Illi- 
nois, where he purchased land and engaged 
in farming for eighteen years, and then 
moved to Woosung township, Ogle county, 
where the remainder of his life was passed. 
He died on the farm now owned by our 
subject, August 6, 1883. He was a man of 
retiring disposition, and one who gave his 
undivided attention to his business, family 
and religious interests. He made a success 
in life, and was enabled to assist his chil- 
dren. Religiously he was a member of the 
Methodist Episcopal church, and in politics 
was a Democrat. He had a family of si.x 
children, as follows; Adoniram, of O'Brien 
county, Iowa; Levi, who died in 1865; 
Sarah, the deceased wife of J. W. Taylor, 
of Whiteside county, Illinois; Nelson B., 



the subject of this sketch; Electa, the de- 
ceased wife of H. Taylor, of Powesheik 
county, Iowa; and Marcellus, of Whiteside 
county, Illinois. 

The paternal grandfather, Benjamin Kid- 
der, was a native of New Hampshire, while 
his father, the great-grandfather of our sub- 
ject, was born in England, and emigrated 
to this country in 1770. He later served in 
the Revolutionary war, and assisted the col- 
onies in securing their independence. 

In his native state Nelson B. Kidder 
grew to manhood, and there received a com- 
mon-school education. The knowledge ob- 
tained in the school room was but little in 
comparison to that since obtained by con- 
tact with his fellow men, and in reading the 
general and current literature of the day. 
He had attained his majority when he came 
with the family to Illinois, and on his ar- 
rival purchased eighty acres of land in 
Whiteside county, to which he later added 
one hundred and twenty acres, giving him 
a fine farm of two hundred acres, eighty 
acres of which has since been sold, leaving 
him a balance of one hundred and twenty 
acres. 

On the 30th of December, 1862, Mr. 
Kidder was united in marriage with Miss 
Amanda Mingle, a native of Bradford coun- 
ty, Pennsylvania, and daughter of James 
and Catherine Mingle, both of whom were 
natives of the same state. She was but ten 
years of age when she accompanied her 
parents to Carroll county, Illinois, where 
they made their permanent home. By this 
union there were three children: Aldena 
died at the age of four years and eight 
months. Irvin is engaged in farming in 
Woosung township. Fred J. is now a 
student in the State Normal School, at Dix- 
on, Illinois. 



204 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



In March, 1874, Mr. Kidder moved to 
Ogle county, since which time he has been 
one of its most enterprising citizens, and 
has talccn quite an active part in public life, 
having served nine consecutive years as 
school director and six years as commis- 
sioner of highways, and in the spring of 
1897 was elected to his present position 
as supervisor of his township, an office 
which he is well qualified to fill, because 
of his good business ability and earn- 
est desire for the public good. He has 
given his attention to general farming, never 
running off on any fads, and in his life work 
has met with a reasonable degree of suc- 
cess. For the past twenty years he has 
been quite an extensive feeder of cattle, 
and annual!}' prepares a good many head 
for the general market. A residence of 
forty-three years in Whiteside and Ogle 
counties has brought him in contact with 
many of their best citizens, and wherever 
he is known he is held in high esteem. 



REV. ANDREW STAHLEY, a resident 
of Ogle county since the spring of 1S65, 
and one of its highly esteemed citizens, was 
born October 3, 1821, in York county, 
Pennsylvania, where he was reared and ed- 
ucated in the common schools of the locali- 
ty. He is of German descent, his grandfa- 
ther, Andrew Stahley, for whom he was 
named, being a native of Germany. On 
coming to America he located in Chance- 
ford township, York county, Pennsylvania. 
He had a family of four children: Peter, 
the father of our subject; Joseph, a black- 
smith by trade, who came to Illinois and lo- 
cated near (Juincy; Stephen, also a black- 
smith by trade, who came west; and Sarah, 
who remained and died in York county, 



Pennsylvania. The grandfather died when 
comparatively a young man. Peter Stahley 
was born in York county in 1784, and by 
occupation was a farmer, a calling which 
he followed during his entire life. During 
the war of 181 2 he was called out, but did 
not enter the service for the reason the or- 
der was countermanded before his company 
could muster. He married Catherine Tome, 
also a native of York county, Pennsylvania, 
daughter of Henry Tome, a farmer of that 
county. She was one of a family of six 
children, the others being Fannie, who mar- 
ried Fred Gable, a merchant of Dover, 
Pennsylvania; Elizabeth, wife of Daniel 
Gohn, a farmer of York county; Jacob, 
George and Henry, who lived and died in 
York county. 

Andrew Stahley is the son of Peter and 
Catherine (Tome) Stahley. After his school 
days and until he attained his majority, he 
remained with his parents, assisting his fa- 
ther in the farm work. When he was twen- 
ty-one he commenced life on his own ac- 
count, doing farm work by the day, contin- 
uing in that work until he was twenty-eight 
years old. Being of a religious turn of mind 
and desirious of serving the Master, he en- 
tered the ministry of the Evangelical Asso- 
ciation, having prepared himself by constant 
reading and study for several years. From 
1849 until 1869 he traveled about preach- 
iing the word, first as a member of the Cen- 
tral Pennsylvania conference, doing mission- 
ary work. He then came to Illinois, and 
as a member of the Illinois conference con- 
tinued the work for four years. His first 
station was at Warren, Pennsylvania, where 
he remained one year. He was then at 
Pittsburg two years, thence back to War- 
ren, Pennsylvania, and then to the Ohio 
circuit, in Stark county, that state, where 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



205 



he remained one year. He was then again 
at Pittsburg one year, when he was elected 
presiding elder for the Pittsburg district. 
Later he was sent to Canton, Ohio, where 
he remained two years, then to Erie, Penn- 
sylvania, two years. From Erie he came 
direct to Forreston, Illinois, and was as- 
signed to the West Grove circuit, preaching 
at Forreston and Freeport, and other points 
in this locality. 

Mr. Stahley was first married in 1S42 
to Miss Charlotte Vogt, a native of York 
county, Pennsylvania, and daughter of Peter 
and Paulina (Will) Vogt. She died in York 
county after a wedded life of five years, 
leaving one daughter, Delilah Ann, now the 
wife of Isaac Vogelgesang, a retired mer- 
chant and business man of Forreston. In 
1852 Mr. Stahley married Miss Sarah Long, 
daughter of Bishop Joseph Long and Kath- 
erine (Hoy) Long. She was a native of 
Columbiana county, Ohio, her father being 
bishop of the Evangelical Association. She 
died in Forrestson, leaving one daughter, 
Josephine, now the wife of Samuel McLain, 
of Forreston, a wholesale manufacturer of 
specialties in medicine. Mr. Stahley mar- 
ried his present wife June 22, 1875. She 
was Miss Ceres Oakes, a native of Reading, 
Pennsylvania, and daughter of George and 
Susan (Cleversy) Oakes. Her father was 
born October 13, 1782, in Hessen Cassel, 
Germany, and left that country when eight- 
een years old, crossing the ocean on an 
English vessel, and while en route to Nova 
Scotia received his first lesson in the English 
language from the captain of the vessel. 
He came to the United States and settled in 
Lancester, Pennsylvania. He was married 
in Nova Scotia to Miss Susan Cleversy, a 
native of Nova Scotia, born in 1800. They 

were married November 26, 1826, and be- 
2•^ 



came the parents of si.x children: Serene, 
born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, March 13, 
182S, became the wife of Francis Knauss, 
and they reside in Rock City, Illinois. Zero, 
born in New Ephrata, Pennsylvania, mar- 
ried Robert Mitchell, and they also reside 
in Rock City, Illinois. Alpha, born at 
Berne, Pennsylvania, June 5, 1832, was a 
soldier in the Civil war. He now resides at 
Ouincy, Illinois. Ceres is the wife of our 
subject. Atlas, born in Johnstown, Penn- 
sylvania, April 9, 1835, was also a soldier 
in the Civil war. He is now residing in the 
west. Omega, born in Johnstown, Penn- 
sylvania, April 3, 1838, is a retired business 
man, living in Oregon. Professionally, 
George Oakes was a teacher, and taught in 
both the English and German languages. He 
was also a fine musician and gave some time 
to teaching music. He came with his fam- 
ily to Illinois in 1846, but died the follow- 
ing year, his remains being interred in the 
Dakota cemetery, in Stephenson county. 
His wife survived him many years, dying in 
1890, in her eighty-eighth year. Her re- 
mains were interred beside those of her 
husband. 

On retiring from the ministry in 1869, 
Mr. Stahley became interested in a planing 
mill, but for many years he has given his 
time to looking after his business interests 
in connection with his farming land, owning 
three hundred and seventy acres in Ogle 
county and eighty acres in Carroll county. 
He has never taken much interest in polit- 
ical affairs as generally managed, and for 
many years did not cast a vote. His first 
presidential vote was cast for Abraham 
Lincoln. He now votes as his conscience 
dictates without regard to party politics. 
While actively engaged in the ministry, he 
was instrumental in the erection of several 



2o6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



churches, and his labors in that way were 
appreciated by the good people of Warren, 
Ohio, and those on the Harmony circuit 
and in Columbiana county, Ohio. He has 
not lost interest in good works, but is ever 
ready to assist in promoting "peace on 
earth, good will toward men." 



EMANUEL M. HARNER.— Almost the 
entire life of this gentleman has been 
passed in Ogle county, Illinois, and his 
name is inseparably connected with the 
agricultural and industrial interests of this 
region. His thoroughly American spirit 
and great energy have enabled him to 
mount from a lowly position to one of af- 
fluence. One of his leading characteristics 
in business affairs is his fine sense of order 
and complete system and the habit of giv- 
ing careful attention to details, without 
which success in any undertaking is never 
an assured fact. He owns and operates a 
well-improved farm on section 2, Leaf 
River township, and is also successfully en- 
gaged in the manufacture of brick. 

Mr. Harner was born in Schuylkill 
county, Pennsylvania, February 28, 1840, 
and is a son of Christian Harner, whose 
birth occurred February 26, 181 1, in Ger- 
many. About 1830 the father emigrated 
to America in company with a cousin, also 
a young man, and located in Northumber- 
land county, Pennsylvania, where he worked 
as a farm hand. There he was united in 
marriage with Miss Elizabeth Delp, who 
was born in that state of German parentage. 
They continued to reside in Pennsylvania 
until 1840, and then, in company with 
eight families, drove across the country to 
Illinois, arriving in Ogle county in May of 
that year. Mr. Harner took up one hun- 



dred and twenty acres on section 11, Leaf 
River township, on which he erected a log 
cabin, and he also pre-empted one hundred 
and sixty acres on section 2. After residing 
upon the former tract for about two 3'ears, 
he built where our subject now resides on 
section 2. This was a good log house, in 
which he made his home until called from 
this life in 1846, at the early age of thirty- 
five years. His wife subsequently married 
again, but continued a resident of Ogle 
county, dying here March iS, 1869. 

Our subject is the second in order of 
birth in the family of five children, the 
others being as follows: Edward B. joined 
the boys in blue during the Civil war, en- 
listing in 1 86 1, in Company H, Thirty- 
fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He was 
killed April 15, 1865, in Chatham county. 
North Carolina, at which time he was serv- 
ing as first lieutenant and was on detached 
duty, having charge of a foraging expedi- 
tion for his command. Amelia is the wife 
of John Willoughby, of Legrand, Iowa. 
Mary Ann is the wife of David Huff, of 
Leaf River township. Ogle county. Chris- 
tian F. is married and lives in Kansas. 

The first recollections of our subject 
are of pioneer scenes, for he was an infant 
when brought by his parents to Ogle coun- 
ty. Wolves were numerous in this region 
at that time and would often come to the 
house in the day time and stick their noses 
under the door. Deer and other wild game 
were also plentiful, the country was all wild 
and unimproved, and the few settlers were 
widely scattered. In common with other 
pioneers, the Harner family endured many 
hardships and privations, but as time passed 
the comforts of civilization were added to 
their home, the wild land was transformed 
into good homes and farms, thriving vil- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



207 



lages sprung up, and the railroad and tele- 
graph were introduced. Mr. Harner has 
watched with interest the wonderful changes 
that have taken place, and has been an im- 
portant factor in the growth and develop- 
ment of the county. As there were few 
schools here during his boyhood, his educa- 
tional privileges were limited and he is 
mostly self-educated. 

On the /th of September, 1S61, he en- 
listed with his brothers, as a private in 
Company H, Thirty-fourth Illinois Volun- 
teer Infantry, which was assigned to the 
Army of the Cumberland and they fought 
together until the brother was killed, 
participating in thirty-seven engagements. 
Among the more important was the battle 
of Shiloh, the siege of Corinth, the battles 
of Missionary Ridge, Perry ville, Kentucky, 
Stone River, Tennessee, Liberty Gap, Chick- 
amauga, the engagements of the Atlanta 
campaign, the memorable march with Sher- 
man to the sea, and the battle of Benton- 
ville. North Carolina. He also took part in 
the grand review at Washington, District 
of Columbia. At Chattanooga he had re- 
enlisted December 22, i<S63, and at Louis- 
ville, Kentucky, was mustered out July 12, 
1865, after almost four years of faithful 
service. 

Returning to hishome Mr. Harner worked 
at the carpenter's trade, which he had pre- 
viously learned. He was married Decem- 
ber 23, 1 866, to Miss Elizabeth Grove, a 
native of Leaf River township, and a daugh- 
ter of Samuel H. Grove, and then rented a 
farm in that township, which he operated 
for several years. He lost his wife Septem- 
ber 23, 1868, and the only child born to 
them, Ola Melissa, died at the age of ten 
months. On the 7th of October, 1869, he 
wedded Miss Bennettie J. Jackson, who was 



born in Sharpsburg, Washington county, 
Maryland. Her father, Josiah Jackson, was 
a native of England, and on coming to 
America settled in Maryland, where he was 
married, in 1840, to Catherine Twig, a na- 
tive of Sharpsburg. He died in Washing- 
ton county at the age of thirty-three years, 
and Mrs. Jackson subsequently removed to 
Ogle county, Illinois, where Mrs. Harner 
was reared and educated, being only five 
years old on her arrival here. Our subject 
and his wife have four children: Anna S., 
wife of Ira Ulfers, who has been operator 
and agent at Maryland Station, Illinois, for 
about twelve years; Mary C. A., wife of 
David Kretsinger, a merchant and business 
man of Egan; Josiah F. O. and Hattie Z. , 
both at home. 

Mr. Harner purchased the interest of 
the other heirs in the old homestead where 
he has since resided, and has successfully 
engaged in farming and stock raising. In 
1895 he embarked in the manufacture of 
brick, set up an engine and machinery for 
that purpose, and the first season turned 
out one hundred and sixty thousand, the 
second, one hundred and twenty thousand, 
and in 189S ninety-one thousand. He uses 
a superior clay and makes a most e.\cellent 
quality of brick, for which he finds a ready 
sale in the local markets. He was for many 
years identified with the Republican party, 
but being a strong advocate of temperance 
he now supports the men and measures of 
the Prohibition party. He has served as 
highway commissioner for three years and 
as a member of the school board and as its 
president for some years. Both he and his 
wife hold membership in the United Breth- 
ren church at Egan, of which he is one of 
the trustees, and by all who know them they 
are held in high regard. 



2o8 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



FRANCIS A. SMITH has for over sixty- 
one years been prominently identified 
with the agricultural interests of Ogle coun- 
ty, and is still engaged in farming on sec- 
tion 4, Byron township. As one of its hon- 
ored pioneers he has been an important fac- 
tor in the development and prosperity of 
the county. He is now numbered among 
the elderly residents of the community and 
is held in that reverence and respect tacitly 
accorded those whose lives have been dis- 
tinguished by integrity and usefulness. 

Mr. Smith was born in Palmer, Massa- 
chusetts, January 22,i8i7,and is of the sixth 
generation born on the old homestead, which 
is still in the possession of the family. His 
ancestors were from Scotland and were 
among the first to settle in the Massachu- 
setts colony. His father, Robert Smith, 
spent his entire life on the old home farm, 
his energies being devoted to agricultural 
pursuits. He married Hannah Hoar, also 
a native of the old Bay state and a daughter 
of Squire Hoar. He died in 1819 when 
comparatively young, and his wife passed 
away in 1855. After her husband's deathshe 
carefully reared her family, consisting of six 
sons and two daughters. 

Our subject, who is the youngest of the 
family, grew to manhood on the old home- 
stead, and received a good practical educa- 
tion, attending first the common schools 
and later the Wilberham and Amherst Acad- 
emies. For two terms he taught school in 
his native state. In 1837, when a young 
man of twenty years, he came to Illiinois.and 
on foot proceeded from Chicago to Ogle 
county, where friends from Massachusetts 
had previously located. He spent the first 
winter with the Patrick family, and in June, 
> 838, purchased a claim of four hundred and 
eighty acres, of which he broke four hun- 



dred acres the first year. In 1838 he re- 
turned to his old home in Massachusetts, 
and in the spring of 1839 came back to his 
present home in Illinois, traveling the entire 
distance on horseback and alone, making 
over one thousand miles in twenty-one days. 
Between Michigan City, Indiana, and Chi- 
cago, Illinois, he traveled sixty miles with- 
out passing a house. 

The following two years he planted 
crops, but as there was no market for his 
products, he then abandoned farming and 
went to work by the month. In the spring 
of 1 84 1 he started for New Orleans in com- 
pany with Messrs. White and Reed, taking 
the first stock marketed in the Crescent 
City. They made the trip by flat boats and 
did not arrive at their destination until 
August, the stock being fed and fattened on 
the boats. On his return to Illinois, Mr. 
Smith engaged in teaming for Henry Potwin, 
who owned and operated several stores, and 
our subject remained in his employ for about 
three years, hauling goods from the stores 
to Chicago and also to the Galena mines. 

On the 14th of March, 1844, Mr. Smith 
was united in marriage with Miss Sarah 
Brown, who was born, reared and educated 
in Brimfield, Massachusetts, and is a daugh- 
ter of Dauphin Brown, one of the honored 
pioneers of Ogle county, and a sister of 
A. F. Brown, whose sketch appears else- 
where in this volume. Nine children were 
born to our subject and his wife, of whom 
six are still living, namely: Hattie, wife of 
H. D. Merrill, who lives on a ranch near 
Los Angeles, California; Albert and Alice, 
twins, the former a resident of Fairbury, 
Nebraska, and the latter the wife of Thomas 
Ferguson, of Rockford, Illinois; Dr. A. H., 
who successfully engaged in the practice of 
medicine for about twenty years and died in 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



209 



Clinton, Iowa, in the spring of 1890; Nellie, 
wife of Thomas Roberts, of Elida, Winne- 
bago county, Illinois; William H., who died 
in Nebraska; Harry R. , who is married, has 
one child and assists his father in the opera- 
tion of the home farm; Julia B., who died 
in 1883; and Lena Belle, wife of Henry J. 
Young, of Scott township. Ogle county. 

In 1S45 Mr. Smith returned to his farm 
in Ogle county and resumed farming. His 
first home here has long since been replaced 
by a commodious and comfortable residence, 
large barns and other outbuildings have 
been erected, and many other improvements 
have been made which add to the value and 
attractive appearance of the place. In con- 
nection with general farming, Mr. Smith has 
given considerable attention to stock raising, 
keeping a high grade of cattle and hogs. He 
has met with excellent success in his under- 
takings, and is to-day one of the most pros- 
perous and substantial farmers of Byron 
township, as well as one of its most highly 
esteemed and honored citizens. Although 
eighty-one years of age he is still able to 
follow the plow and to perform the other 
duties of the farm, and believes he is able 
to walk twenty-five miles in a day. In 1840 
he cast his first ballot for William Henry 
Harrison, and continued to support the 
Whig party until the organization of the 
Republican party, when he joined its ranks 
and has since been one of its stanch sup- 
porters. He has filled the office of commis- 
sioner of highways, but has never cared for 
political honors, but as a public-spirited and 
enterprising citizen he gives his support to 
all objects which he believes calculated to 
prove of public benefit, or will in any way 
advance the welfare of the people around 
him. His estimable wife is a member of 
the Congregational church. 



HENRY SCHELLING. —There are 
numerous fine farms in Ogle county 
which will compare favorably with any 
others in the state as regards production and 
also as to the improvements which have 
been made upon them. Many of these 
places are owned by men who have started 
out in the world with little more than an un- 
limited amount of energy and perseverance, 
and who have succeeded in an eminent de- 
gree in securing a comfortable home and 
competence. As a representative of this 
class of agriculturists, great pleasure is taken 
in presenting the name of the subject of this 
notice, who is living on section 26, Leaf 
River township. 

Mr. Schelling was born in Washington 
county, Maryland, December 16, 1S37, a 
son of Joseph and Catherine (Schaffer) 
Schelling, who were born, reared and mar- 
ried in Germany. On coming to the new 
world they settled in Washington county, 
Maryland, where as a stonemason and 
plasterer the father carried on operations 
throughout his active business life. He 
died there in 1859, and his wife passed away 
some nine years previously. In their fam- 
ily were ten children, four sons and six 
daughters, all of whom reached years of 
maturity, but one daughter is now deceased. 

Henry Schelling grew to manhood in his 
native county, and in early life was provided 
with fair common-school advantages. In 
the east he worked for his father as a 
plasterer and mason, but in 1859 came to 
Ogle county, Illinois, arri\'ing on the 2Sth 
of February, and joining an elder brother, 
Andrew Schelling, who had located here 
about 1854. During the first two 3'ears 
spent here he worked as a farm hand. On 
the 1 2th of January, 1861, he was united in 
marriage with Miss Susan Henan, also a na- 



2IO 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



tive of Maryland, and a daughter of Will- 
iam Henan, a pioneer of Ogle county, 
where she was mostly reared. They began 
their domestic life upon rented land, which 
Mr. Schelling operated forsixyears, and then 
made his first purchase, consisting of a 
tract of three hundred and twenty acres 
of timber land. He at once began to 
clear and fence the land, and it was not 
long before he had transformed the 
wild tract into a well cultivated farm. Later 
he bought more land, and is now the owner 
of two good farms adjoining his other and 
aggregating four hundred and twenty-three 
acres, pleasantly situated in Leaf River 
township, only a half mile from the village 
of that name. He has recently purchased 
one additional tract of seventy acres. 
While opening up his farm he made his 
home for a number of years in a frame 
house, which had previously been erected 
thereon, but it has since been replaced by 
a large, neat and substantial residence, 
while two large barns, a granary, windpump, 
water works, cribs, sheds, etc.. have also 
been built, making it one of the best im- 
proved farms of the township. 

Mr. and Mrs. Schelling are the parents 
of eleven children, namely; Frank and 
Albert, who are both married and are en- 
gaged in farming in Leaf River township; 
Charles, who is married and assists in the 
operation of the home farm; Dallas, who is 
married and carries on farming near Water- 
loo, Iowa; Arthur, who is married and en- 
gaged in farming in Leaf River township; 
Bert and John, both at home; Mary, wife 
of Homer Stanley; Irena, wife of Samuel 
Clevidense, a farmer near Polo, Ogle coun- 
ty; Lilly, who is engaged in teaching school 
and resides at home; and Jennie, also at 
home. 



Mr. Schelling cast his first vote for 
Abraham Lincoln and continued to support 
the Republican party for some time, but 
believing the temperance question the most 
important issue before the people, he now 
gives his allegiance to the Prohibition party. 
He has never sought or desired public of- 
fice, though he has acceptably served as 
highway commissioner and as a member of 
the school board in his district. Both he 
and his wife are faithful members of the 
United Brethren church of Leaf River and 
enjoy the esteem and friendship of a large 
circle of friends and acquaintances. For 
almost forty years he has been a resident of 
the county, and during that time he has 
witnessed much of its growth and develop- 
ment and has given his support to every 
enterprise for its advancement, being one of 
its most public spirited and progressive 
citizens. 

AUGUST F. KORF, section i, Lincoln 
township, is one of the most prosperous 
farmers in Ogle county. In his home farm 
he has three hundred and thirty acres, a 
well improved and valuable farm, while he 
is also the owner of three hundred and twen- 
ty acres in another part of the township, 
which is well improved. He is a native of 
Germany, l)orn in Lippe Detmold, May 2, 
1S43, but has been a resident of Ogle county 
since July 19, 184S. His father, Louis 
Korf, was also a native of Germany, born in 
1797. He there grew to manhood and 
married Mary Fosha, also a native of that 
country. In his native land Louis Korf en- 
gaged in herding, an occupation in which 
there was l)ut a bare living. He desired 
something better, and to that end, in com- 
pany with a numl)er of immigrants, he left 
for the United States, They set sail from 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



21 t 



Bremen for New York in a slow sailing ves- 
sel, and in due time landed in New York, 
from which place they came direct to Ogle 
county, where they joined some German 
friends. They landed in the county on the 
19th of July. The survivors of that com- 
pany celebrated the event July 19, 1898, 
their semi-centennial. 

The second year after his arrival Louis 
Korf purchased eighty acres of land in Mary- 
land township on which he erected a log 
cabin, with two rooms, one and a half stor- 
ies in height, into which he removed with 
his family and commenced life in earnest in 
this new world. Like almost all others of 
his race, he was industrious and thrifty, and 
from time to time added to his possessions 
until he became one of the well-to-do farm- 
ers of the township. On that farm he died 
in July, 1 87 1, at the age of seventy-five 
years. His wife passed away September 
28, 1869. They had a family of si.x chil- 
dren who grew to mature years, as follows: 
Minnie, wife of William Moudhanker, of 
Baileyville, Illinois; Dorotha, who married 
John Pothost, both of whom are deceased; 
Elizabeth, wife of Frederick Todman, of 
Forreston township; Frederick, a farmer of 
Forreston township; Henry, of Jasper coun- 
ty, Iowa; and August F., of this review. 

The subject of this sketch was but five 
years old when he came to Ogle county, 
and here his entire life has since been 
passed. His educational advantages were 
very limited, confined principally to the 
common schools. The knowledge since 
acquired has been obtained by experience 
with the world. The youngest son, he re- 
mained with his parents during their declin- 
ing years, helping to relieve them of much 
of the cares incidental to old age. He was 
married in Maryland township. Ogle county. 



March 9, 1870, to Miss Doratha M. Zum- 
dahl, also a native of Germany, born in 
Sabberhauser, Germany, April 7, 1848, and 
who came to Ogle county, in 1850, where 
she grew to womanhood and received her 
education. Four sons have come to bless 
their union. August C, born February 23, 
1 87 1, yet resides at home and is assisting in 
carr3'ing on the home farm. Jesse A., born 
January 14, 1874, is now a student in the 
Northern Illinois Normal school, at Dixon, 
Illinois. George F., born May 10, 1877, is 
a student of Heidleburg University, Tiffin, 
Ohio. William H. , born October 31,1 8S0, 
is a student of the Forreston high school. 

After his marriage, Mr. Korf took his 
bride to his father's home, where they re- 
sided until 1 88 1, when he bought his pres- 
ent farm to which they removed and where 
they have since continued to reside. The 
farm has been greatly improved in the past 
few years b}' the remodeling of the dwelling 
house and the erection of needed outbuild- 
ings. The place now shows the work of a 
master mind, and the thrift of its owner. 
Mr. Korf has in addition to his home farm 
one of three hundred and twenty acres in 
sections 11 and 12, Lincoln township. 
Much of his property has been acquired 
since his marriage, and is the result of his 
own wise management, assisted by his es- 
timable wife. 

Politically Mr. Korf holds to the views 
and principles of the Democratic party. 
His first presidential vote was cast for 
George B. McClellan, in 1864. In local 
elections he does not confine himself to his 
party ticket, but votes for the men he con- 
siders the best qualified. The only official 
position held by him is that of member of 
the school board, a position that he held for 
about twelve years. 



2T2 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



During the Civil war the sympathies of 
Mr. Korf was on the side of the union, and 
in March, 1865, he offered his services to 
his adopted country and joined Company 
F, Fifteenth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, 
joining his regiment at Morehead City, 
North Carolina, remaining with it until after 
the close of the war. After the close of 
hostilities his regiment was ordered first to 
Louisville, Kentucky, and later to Leaven- 
worth, Kansas, where it was mustered out. 
His discharge was received at Springfield, 
Illinois. 

Mr. Korf and family are members of the 
Reformed Church of America, their local 
church being at West Grove. In that or- 
ganization Mr. Korf has been one of the 
elders for some years. In the work of the 
church he manifests the liveliest interest. 
The family are held in the highest esteem 
wherever known. For lifty-one years Mr. 
Korf has been a resident of Ogle county, 
and although he was quite small when he 
came here, he has yet a vivid recollection 
of the hardships endured during the first 
few years after the arrival of the family. 
He has, however, lived to see a vast change, 
and the county of his adoption take front 
rank among its sister counties of the fair 
state of Illinois. 



MILO A. JONES 
true meaning; of 



lS has demonstrated the 
jf the word success as 
the full accomplishment of an honorable 
purpose. Energy, close application, perse- 
verance and good management — these are 
the elements which have entered into his 
business career and crowned his efforts with 
prosperity. To-day he is the leading iiard- 
ware merchant of I->yron, Illinois. 

Mr. Jones is a native of New York, born 



in Jewett, Greene county, April 29, 1841, 
and his father, Benjamin Jones, Jr., were 
also natives of the Empire state, where the 
family was founded by Welsh emigrants at 
an early day in the history of this country. 
The father grew to manhood in Greene 
county, and there married Miss Catherine 
Peck, who was also born in New York, and 
died in Greene county, in 1892. There he 
still resides, a hale and hearty old man of 
ninety-three years, honored and respected 
by all who know him. By occupation he 
was a farmer and met with success in his 
chosen calling. Milo A. is the oldest in his 
family of seven children, five sons and two 
daughters, the others being Edward, a resi- 
dent of Greene county. New York; Charles, 
who is engaged in mercantile business at 
Alberquerque, New Mexico; Frank, who 
went to Colorado after reaching manhood 
and there died; Sumner, a business man of 
Greene county; and Mary, wife of Herbert 
Kipp, a merchant of Greene county. 

Amid rural scenes on the home farm, 
Milo A. Jones passed his boyhood and 
youth. On the 29th of August, 1862, he 
joined the boys in blue as a member of 
Company F, One Hundred and Twentieth 
New York Volunteer Infantry, which was 
assigned to the army of the Potomac, and 
with his regiment participated in a number 
of important engagements, including the 
battles of Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville 
and Gettysburg. At the last named he re- 
ceived a gunshot wound in the left thigh 
which permanently disabled him. For sev- 
eral months he was confined to the hospital 
at Baltimore, and when partially recovered 
was ordered to Washington, District of 
Columbia, where he was on duty in the pro- 
vost marshal's office for about a year. He 
was then put in the detective service, and 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



21 



was in the provost marshal's office another 
year, remaining there until hostilities ceased, 
when he was mustered out in July, 1865. 

Returning to his home in New York, Mr. 
Jones remained there a short time, but in 
February, 1866, we find him cii route for 
Illinois. He located in Winnebago county, 
where he rented land and engaged in farm- 
ing for a few days. There he was married, 
in March, 1869, to Miss Sarah E. Brown, a 
native of that county, and a daughter of 
Samuel Brown, one of its honored pioneers, 
having made his home there since 1836. 
He is now deceased, but the mother is still 
living, a hale old lady of about ninety years, 
and makes her home with Mrs. Jones in 
Byron. She has three children. Captain 
John E. Brown, the only son, valiantly 
fought for the old flag and the cause it rep- 
resented during the Rebellion, and com- 
manded his company in that war. He re- 
ceived an excellent education, being a grad- 
uate of Lombard University, and for some 
years successfully engaged in teaching, but 
is now a railroad man with the Missouri Pa- 
cific and resides in Ivansas. The other 
daughter, Alice, is the wife of S. P. Wilson 
and resides in South Haven, Michigan. Mr. 
and Mrs. Jones have two children: Ellen, 
now the wife of Henry Weld, a farmer of 
Marion township, Ogle county; and Alice, 
at home. 

For a few years after his marriage, Mr. 
Jones operated the old Brown homestead, 
and later engaged in the grain and stock 
business at New Milford for several years. 
After coming to Byron in the fall of 1883, 
he continued that business and was instru- 
mental in forming the stock company which 
erected the first elevator at this place. In 
1 888 he purchased an interest in a hardware 
store, and in partnership with William 

23 



Dodds carried it on for several years, but in 
1897 he purchased the latter's interest and 
is now alone in business. He carries a full 
and complete line of shelf and heavy hard- 
ware, stoves, tinware, buggies, wagons and 
agricultural implements and enjoys a large 
and lucrative trade, receiving a liberal pat- 
ronage from the people of Byron and sur- 
rounding country. 

Politically Mr. Jones has been a life- 
long Republican, casting his first vote for 
Abraham Lincoln in 1864, but he has never 
taken a very active part in politics aside 
from voting. While a resident of Winne- 
bago county he served as deputy sheriff 
for two years, but has never sought office, 
preferring to give his time and attention to 
his extensive business interests. Frater- 
nally he is an honored member of the Ma- 
sonic lodge of Byron, and the Ancient 
Order of the United Workmen and the 
Grand Army post at Rockford. As a busi- 
ness man and citizen he merits and receives 
the respect and confidence of the entire 
community, and since coming to Byron he 
has made a host of warm friends. 



HON. TIMOLEON O. JOHNSTON, 
editor and proprietor of the Oregon 
Reporter, is a native of Wisconsin, born in 
Franklin, Iowa county, June 30, 1849, and 
is the son of Wesley and Sarah L. (Phelps) 
Johnston. The family are of Irish ancestry, 
the paternal grandfather being a captain 
during the war of the Revolution, coming 
to this country at an early day. He was a 
prosperous merchant of New York city, 
where his death occurred. Wesley John- 
ston was born in New York city, April 1 , 
18 1 7, and inherited from his father a shrewd 
business capacity, which favored him in the 



214 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



world of trade. He received a good educa- 
tion, and, at the age of twenty, with a good 
portion of money he left the great metrop- 
olis and started out in the world to seek his 
fortune. Aside from substantial financial 
backing he had a good stock of courage, 
determination and energy. St. Louis was 
his first stopping place, and the pleasure he 
experienced on this trip, which was mainly 
by water, suggested to him a position on 
one of the magnificent packets then on the 
river, and he succeeded in getting a clerk- 
ship on one of the boats plying between St. 
Louis and New Orleans. This position was 
of value to him in after life, as it brought 
him in contact with the various phases of 
human life and nature, and it also added to 
his capital. His next position was as clerk 
in a hotel in that once famous resort. Sul- 
phur Springs, near St. Louis. He there 
became acquainted with prominent men of 
wealth, and later a company was formed 
for the purchase of several thousand acres 
of timber land near St. Louis, and Mr. 
Johnston was put in charge of the cutting. 
This was a gigantic task and brought young 
Johnston in contact with another phase of 
mankind, as he had in his employ hundreds 
of laborers of all classes. 

In 1841 Mr. Johnston came to Ogle 
county, Illinois, where his brother James, 
an extensive farmer, was then living, and 
whose lands lay just east of the village of 
Oregon. He there established an office and 
employed himself in loaning money for a 
few years. Later he formed a partnership 
with J. C. T. Phelps, his brother-in-law, 
and engaged in merchandising. They were 
well fixed financially, and also had unlim- 
ited credit, and established a number of 
trading posts in Illinois and Wisconsin. 
This partnership lasted for sixteen years. 



They had stores in Peru and LaSalle, in 
LaSalle county, and while living at Peru, 
Mr. Johnston was elected county treasurer 
of LaSalle county during one of the most 
exciting periods of the county's existence. 
From Peru they went to Polo, Illinois, and 
established themselves in the banking busi- 
ness. Soon the great state of Texas at- 
tracted the attention of these gentlemen, 
and ever ready to embrace opportunities 
for business, they started in 1857 for that 
southwestern empire, locating at Austin, 
where they opened a general store, and 
also had business at other points. They 
were quite successful, but the air soon be- 
came full of secession, and these business 
men were looked upon with suspicion. 
The Southern confederacy was formed, and 
before the battle of Bull's Run their goods 
were confiscated, and they returned to 
Illinois, satisfied to get out with their 
lives. 

In 1865 Mr. Johnston retired from active 
trade and established a real estate and loan 
office at Oregon, which he continued up to 
the time of his death, which occurred Sep- 
tember 5, 1893, at the residence of his 
daughter, Mrs. Wagoner, where he had 
made his home since the death of his wife. 
The funeral services were conducted by 
Rev. Barton Cartwright. He had accu- 
mulated a valuable estate, which, with his 
honored name, he left to his heirs. He was 
a man of fine social qualities, a good con- 
versationalist, which, added to his vast ex- 
perience and stirring events in his life, made 
him a very interesting companion. He 
was quite domestic in his taste, fond of his 
family and friends, and they were of him, 
and loved him. He had erected for himself 
and family, at Oregon, a large and hand- 
some residence, in which, surrounded by 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



215 



his family, he spent his declining 3'ears. He 
died, mourned and regretted by all. 

In 1848 Mr. Johnston married Sarah 
Louise Phelps, daughter of judge John and 
Sarah (Carlin) Phelps, cousin of Governor 
Carlin, this state, her father being the 
founder of Oregon. He was a native of 
Bedford county, Virginia, and came to Illi- 
nois early in the thirties. In 1835 he lo- 
cated in Ogle county, where he had staked 
a claim in 1S33, his attention having been 
called to this beautiful location by Colonel 
William Hamilton, son of Alexander Hamil- 
ton. A two-story log house was built in 
1S34, in the erection of which his brother- 
in-law, James C. T. Phelps, so long and 
prominently connected with Ogle county, 
assisted. This house was situated just be- 
low where the old Catholic stone church 
now stands. This house was used by the 
first circuit court held in the county. 
John Phelps was the first probate 
judge to hold court in the county, which 
was also held in this house. He was a 
man of the people, and was elected and 
served as a member of the legislature. 
John Phelps was born in Bedford county, 
Virginia, August 9, 1790, and died April 2, 
1874. His wife died in 1879. They had 
three children — James C. T., who died at 
his home in Kansas City, Missouri, Decem- 
ber 24, 1895; Sarah L. , and Napoleon B., 
the latter d\ing in New Orleans, December 
10, 1857. The family were related to Gov- 
ernor Carlin, of this state. Mrs. Johnston 
was born in Lebanon, Tennessee, March 27, 
1S17, and her mother, Sarah Regan Carlin, 
was born in Nashville, Tennessee, April 29, 
1797. She came to Ogle county with her 
father in May, 1835, where she first met 
Wesley Johnston, to whom she was married 
June 8, 1848, by S.Wooley, a justice of the 



peace, at her father's house, over the old 
store. No. 118 North Third street, corner 
Washington and Third streets. She de- 
parted this life October 4, 1889. She was 
a devout Christian woman, a devoted wife 
and mother, and was much beloved by all 
who knew her. She was a member of the 
Episcopal church, of which body Mr. John- 
ston was also a member. In politics he 
was originally a Democrat, but later became 
a Republican. They were the parents of 
four children: Timoleon O., our subject; 
Sarah Alice, who married S. G. Jones, but 
is now deceased; Eva E. and James W., 
the latter being in business in Chicago. 

The subject of this sketch was educated 
at Sinsinawa Mound and at Rock River 
Seminary, Mt. Morris. After learning the 
printer's trade in the office of the Oregon 
National Guard, he went to Vinton, Benton 
county, Iowa, and was there connected with 
the Vinton Semi-Weekly Eagle for about 
three years. He then returned to Oregon 
and purchased an interest in the Ogle 
County Reporter, February 16, 1872. At 
the end of si.x months he purchased the en- 
tire interest in the plant and became sole 
proprietor. From that time to the present 
he has continued in charge of the paper, a 
longer period of time than the publisher of 
any local paper in the state. 

Mr. Johnston was united in marriage 
December 30, 1869, at Vinton, Iowa, to 
Miss Mary E. Shockley, daughter of Philip 
and Mary Shockley. Her parents are yet 
living in Vinton, Iowa, and celebrated their 
golden wedding in June, 1898. To Mr. 
and Mrs. Johnston three children have been 
born. May Aileen is now the wife of Will- 
iam L. Katzenberger, of Baltimore, Mary- 
land; John P. is in the office with his father. 
He married Hattie E. Sutphen, of Rochelle, 



2l6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and daughter of Peter M. and Maggie (Kelly) 
Sutphen. They have one child, Timoleon 
O. The remaining member of the family is 
Lillian Eidola, who was married to William 
F. Rudolphy, of Chicago, April 27, 1898. 

Mr. Johnston has taken an active and 
leading part in the politics of Ogle county. 
He was elected alderman in 1877-8, and 
then in 1879-80. In 1883 he was elected 
mayor and served one term. He was 
elected secretary of the Republican Edi- 
torial Association, of Illinois, in 18 — , and 
was elected president of the Press Associa- 
tion at the Bloomington convention, in 
1888, and has been secretary of the Repub- 
lican Editorial Association of Illinois. He 
was secretary of the Old Settlers' Associa- 
tion of Ogle county, and has been vice- 
president of the same since the death of his 
father and served as president of the same 
in 1896. He has been delegate to various 
conventions from time to time, and is now 
on the State Editorial Republican commit- 
tee. In May, 1897, he was appointed, by 
Governor Tanner, as trustee of the South- 
ern Illinois State Normal University at 
Carbondale, Illinois. 

Fraternally Mr. Johnston is a member 
of the Masonic order, holding membership 
with -Oregon Lodge, No. 420, R. A. M., 
Rock River Chapter, No. 151, and Dixon 
Commandery. and the Modern Woodmen 
of America. He is also a member of Oregon 
Lodge, No. 94, I. O. O. F., and of the In- 
dependent Order of Improved Red Men. 

The Ogle County Reporter, which has 
so long been conducted by Mr. Johnston, is 
a Republican journal, and one of the lead- 
iug papers of the county. It is a seven 
column quarto, and is issued every Wednes- 
day, being ably edited by its proprietor, who 
makes of it a bright newsy sheet. A good 



job office is connected with the paper, where 
first -class work is done. 

Mr. Johnston is the only representative 
now in Ogle county of two prominent and 
leading families who were early settlers in 
the county, and who left their mark on its 
civilization. He is a worthy representative 
of these families and holds up their honored 
name. He has an ample fortune mostly 
derived from the estate of his father, and is 
liberal in aiding all public enterprises that 
center in the development of the county 
and in charitable work. He has a host 
of friends, not only in Ogle county, but 
throujjhout the state. 



REV. N. J. STROH, deceased, was a 
man deserving of the highest honors, 
one who gave the best years of his life for 
the betterment of his iellowmen. He was 
born in Liken's Valley, Pennsylvania, May 
5, 179S, and after receiving a fairly good 
education in the grammar schools of his na- 
tive county he entered college under the di- 
rection of Rev. Locknian, a minister of the 
Lutheran church, who educated for the 
ministry a number of young men, with the 
design of having them enter the missionary 
field. After completing his course Mr. 
Stroh was ordained to the ministry by the 
Lutheran Synod of Pennsylvania. This 
was about 1823. After preaching for a 
number of churches in the east, with a view 
of restoring his health which had been im- 
paired, he came west, traveling throughout 
Illinois and other states. 

Returning east, in 1826, Mr. Stroh was 
united in marriage, near Newville, Pennsyl- 
vania, with Miss Elizabeth Givler, born De- 
cember 2, 1807, and by this union ten chil- 
dren were born: Maria, November 23, 




REV. N. J. STROH. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



219 



1S28; Luther M., April r;, 1830; Muehlen- 
berg, July 28, 1S32; Martha E., September 
6, 1835; Rhenius, April 27, 1837; Christa- 
vius A., September 16, 1840; Alfred E. , 
March 6, 1842; Augusta C. and Cecelia A., 
twins, February 16, 1844; and Josephine, 
June 6, 1848. 

After remaining and preaching in the 
east for a number of years. Rev. Stroh, in 
1845, came to Ogle county, Illinois, and lo- 
cated at Oregon, where he resided one year, 
in the meantime organizing the Lutheran 
church at that place. He then moved to 
Mt. Morris and purchased two large farms, 
on one of which he made his home, and 
there resided for many years engaged in ag- 
ricultural pursuits, and preaching the gospel 
in regions roundabout. He organized the 
Lutheran church in Mt. Morris, and for a 
number of years ministered to its spiritual 
wants. After a long and useful life, he was 
called to his reward January i, 1897, being 
in his ninety-ninth year. His wife died 
November 10, 1894. She was a good 
woman, a worthy helpmeet to her husband 
and a devout member of the Lutheran 
church. In politics Mr. Stroh was a Dem- 
ocrat, but he did not mingle much in polit- 
ical affairs. He was much beloved by the 
people, not alone of his own religious com- 
munion, but by all others, and his death 
was sincerely mourned. " Truly a prophet 
in Israel has fallen." 

Maria E. Stroh, the first of the children 
born to Rev. and Mrs. Stroh, grew to 
womanhood and July 4, 1846, was united in 
marriage with Philip R. Bennett, a mer- 
chant doing business in Oregon, who was 
born in Massachusetts, October 10, 1824. 
He departed this life March i, 1855. They 
became the parents of four children: Fred- 
erick W., born September 1 1, 1848; Walter 



S, , August 4, 1S50; Arthur V., September 
30, 1852; and Philip, January 31, 1855. 
Mrs. Bennett, January 4, 18C0, was again 
married, her second union being with Will- 
iam Schiiltz, a native of New York state, 
born May 23, 1823. By this union four 
children were born: William, September 
21, 1S60; John R., July 26, 1862; Mary L., 
April 12, 1S64; and Katie L., February 13, 
1866. 

For some years Mr. Schultz was en- 
gaged in the real estate business in Mt. 
Morris. Later he moved to Oregon and 
continued in the same line of business 
with gratifying success. He died in Oregon 
February 28, 1S79. As a business man he 
was enterprising, ever ready to assist in any 
enterprise that would be of benefit to his 
adopted city and county. In politics he 
was a Republican, and religiously a Lu- 
theran, being a member of the church at 
Oregon. 

After the death of her husband, Mrs. 
Schultz moved with her son Walter to 
Grand Island, Nebraska, where she resided 
for some years. In October, 1896, she re- 
turned to Mt. Morris to care for her aged 
father, who died a few 'mouths later. She 
still makes her home in the village where 
she is so well known and where she is sur- 
rounded by many old friends. 



MICHAEL GARMAN, now living in re- 
tirement in Forreston, is one of Ogle 
county's pioneer citizens, and a gentleman 
whose life has contributed largely to its de- 
velopment along industrial and educational 
lines. He dates his residence in the county 
since May 28, 1842. He was born in Leb- 
anon county, Pennsylvania, January 19, 
1 82 1, and there lived until si.x years of age, 



;20 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



removing with his parents to Northumber- 
land county, in the same state, where he 
was educated and grew to manhood. After 
his school days, he became an apprentice 
to the shoemaking trade, but because of its 
close confinement he soon gave it up and 
selected a healthier life at farm work on his 
father's farm. In 1842, he came west with 
his parents, and settled in what was then Mt. 
Morris township, his father purchasing two 
hundred acres, and beginning its cultivation. 
On the 1 6th of April, 1844, Mr. Gar- 
man was united in marriage with Miss Eliz- 
abeth Fagar, a daughter of Coonrod and 
Hosanna (Fisher) Fagar. She was a native 
of Northumberland county, Pennsylvania, 
born March 17, 1823, and came west 
with her parents the same year in which 
the Garman family settled here. By this 
union were eleven children as follows: 
Sarah Ann and John Henry, who died in 
infancy; Joel Ezra, a farmer residing near 
Adelaine; Louise Josephine, Lucinda Re- 
becca, Emma Frances, and Helen Ada, 
who died in infancy; Lucy Alice, wife of 
Harvey Alters, a farmer of Lincoln town- 
ship. Ogle county; Ida Honora, wife of Al- 
fred Meyers, a farmer of Woosung town- 
ship. Ogle county; Newton Alvin, a mer- 
chant of Sioux City, Iowa; and Gerard 
Michael, who enjoys a fine dental practice 
in Chicago. Mrs. Garman, the mother of 
these children, lived to see the living ones 
married and settled comfortably, and then 
passed away September 2, 1898. 

Michael Garman lived in Lincoln town- 
ship, until 1886, and by his frugality and 
industry, acquired a competency in choice 
and well-improved farm property. While 
yet residing in Mt. Morris township, he 
held the office of assessor two years, and 
from 1844 to 1848, was town treasurer. 



He was township trustee for twelve years 
and school director of district No. i twen- 
ty-four years. In Lincoln township he was 
supervisor one year and assessor two years, 
school trustee ten years, president of the 
school board in Forreston nine }ears, and 
president of the town board one year. He 
holds the remarkable record of service in 
educational affairs, continuously since 1844. 
His first presidential ballot was cast for 
James K. Polk, in 1S44, and he is yet a 
stanch Democrat. 

Mr. Garman's ancestors came from Ger- 
many to America some years prior to the 
Revolutionary war. His grandfather, Mich- 
ael Garman, was a native of York county, 
Pennsylvania, and was born in 1747. He 
had a creditable military record, and served 
seven years in the Revolutionary struggle, 
and was taken prisoner by the enemy in the 
battle of Brandywine. He had the rank of 
sergeant, and, being a blacksmith by trade, 
had the entire management of the black- 
smith department during the war. The 
hardships endured brought on an illness 
which terminated in his untimely death, 
January 8, 1800. He married Susanna 
Sheets, who was born in Lancaster county, 
Pennsylvania, August 16, 1768. They were 
united in marriage in Dalton county, Pennsyl- 
vania, in 1785, and became the parents of 
six children : Catherine, wife of John W'ertz, 
a farmer of Northumberland county, Penn- 
sylvania; Martin, who followed the trade of 
shoemaker in Northumberland county, Penn- 
sylvania; Benjamin, who died in infancy; 
Jacob, who in early life learned the trade of 
tailoring, but who later became a farmer, 
and who removed with his family to Illinois 
in 1844; Michael, the father of our subject; 
and George, a farmer of Northumberland 
county, Pennsylvania. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



22t 



Our subject's father was born September 
29. 179S, in Northumberland county, Penn- 
sylvania, where he attended school, and 
afterwards learned the blacksmith's trade, at 
which he worked until twenty-six, when he 
was elected constable, in which office he 
served until 1S33. On the 21st of June, 
1826, he married Rebecca Mace, daughter 
of John Mace, a farmer of Lebanon county, 
Pennsylvania. To this marriage there was 
born one child, Michael, the subject of this 
sketch. The father died August 11, 1870, 
his remains being buried in West Grove 
cemetery, Lincoln township. His wife sur- 
vived him, dying February 24, 1874, and 
her remains were interred beside those of 
her husband's. 

Mr. Carman's maternal great-grand- 
father, Jacob Mace, was born in Lebanon 
county, Pennsylvania, and followed farming. 
In 1750, he married a Miss Baker, and one 
of the children of this marriage was John 
Mace, the father of our subject's mother. 
John Mace was born in Lebanon count}-, 
Pennsylvania, and married Miss Margaret 
Jacoby, daughter of Jacob Jacoby, and by 
this union were four children — Mary, Re- 
becca, Jacob and John. 

Mrs. Michael Carman, the wife of our 
subject, was one of a family of twelve chil- 
dren, eight surviving as follows: Daniel, 
residing in Forreston; Samuel, living in I^in- 
coln township; Sarah Fagar Maze, living in 
Forreston township; Isaac, of Brookville 
township; Peter, of Forreston township; 
David, of Willow Springs, Kansas; Henry, 
of Osage county, Ivansas; and Hosanna, 
wife of Daniel Hoelshue, living at Herndon, 
Northumberland county, Pennsylvania. 

Mr. Carman and family are devout 
members of the Evangelical association. 
He is among Forreston's and Ogle county's 



most highly esteemed citizens, and the con- 
fidence and regard in which he is held is 
evidenced daily in his advice and counsel 
being sought, and his assistance being ren- 
dered in the settlement of estates. His life 
has been an open book, and he has freely 
given of his time to aid in the general im- 
provement of his county, and has especially 
been helpful in social, educational and relig- 
ious affairs. 



lOHN S. HASTINGS, one of Ogle 
U county's most thrifty and energetic 
farmers, whose home is on section 8, Ma- 
rion township, was born in Clark county, 
Ohio, September 19, 1846, and is a son of 
Edmond Hastings, who was born in one of 
the New England states, and when a young 
man went to Ohio. In Clark county he 
wedded Miss Mary Ann Sheaff, a native of 
New York, and a daughter of John Sheaff, 
a pioneer of that county, who removed from 
Pennsylvania to New York, and from there 
to Ohio. Coming west in 1850, Mr. Hast- 
ings located on a tract of wild land in Ogle 
county and at once commenced the im- 
provement and cultivation of his place. 
He was joined by his wife and family the 
following year, and continued the operation 
of his farm until his death, which occurred 
in 1856. His widow subsequently married 
John M. Hinckle, now deceased, and now 
makes her home with a daughter in Ore- 
gon, Illinois, a hale and hearty old lady of 
seventy-four years. By the first union 
there were four children: Mary, who mar- 
ried, and died leaving a family; Emma C, 
wife of a Mr. Frace, of Holcomb, Illinois: 
John S., of this review; and Peter E., a 
business man of Oregon. 

Brought to Ogle county during childhood, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



John S. Hastings was reared by his mother 
upon the home farm in Marion township, 
and obtained his education in the common 
and higher schools of the county. Although 
only sixteen years of age, he enlisted in 
February, 1864, in Company F, Thirty- 
fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and joined 
the regiment at Oregon. He participated 
in many important engagements, including 
the battles of Rocky Faced Ridge, Buzzard 
Roost, Resaca, Rome, Georgia, Peach Tree 
Creek, the siege of Atlanta, the battle of 
Goldsboro, and the march with Sherman to 
the sea. Later he took part in the battle 
and capture of Savannah, Bentonville, South 
Carolina, and Averyboro, and at the close 
of the war participated in the grand review 
at Washington, District of Columbia. He 
was always found at his post of duty, valiant- 
ly fighting for the old flag and the cause it 
represented, and when hostilities ceased was 
honorably discharged in July, 1865. He 
was never confined to the hospital and lost 
no time from his regiment. 

After his return home Mr. Hastings at- 
tended school in Rockford for three months 
and then began work on the home farm, 
which he continued to operate after his 
marriage until 1880, when he purchased the 
place where he now resides. It comprises 
one hundred and twenty acres of highly 
cultivated and well improved land, on which 
he has erected a large barn and other out- 
buildings, making it one of the most desir- 
able farms of the localit)'. He thoroughly 
understands his chosen calling and has met 
with a well-deserved success. 

At Oregon, Ogle county, in December, 
1876, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. 
Hastings and Miss Rachel J. Page, who was 
born, reared and educated here, her father, 
Robert Page, having come to the county at 



an early day from Ohio. Four children 
bless this union: Charles E., at home; Mabel 
L., who was well educated in the schools of 
Byron and is now a successful teacher; 
Herbert J. and Eva B. , both at home. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Hastings 
has always been an ardent Republican, cast- 
ing his first presidential ballot for Gen. U. S. 
Grant in 1868. For several years he was 
an efficient member of the school board and 
was president of the district. Fraternally 
he is a Master Mason, belonging to the blue 
lodge at Byron, and is also an honored 
member of the Grand Army post. He is a 
public-spirited, enterprising citizen of known 
reliability, and has the confidence and es- 
teem of all with whom he comes in contact 
either in business or social life. 



HENRY A. PARKS one of the enter- 
prising farmers of Ogle county, resides 
on section 22, Woosung township. He 
was born January 15, 1847, in Palmyra, 
Lee county, Illinois, and is the son of Hi- 
ram P. Parks and Martha (Moon) Parks, early 
settlers of Lee county. Hiram P. Parks 
was born at Malone, New York, in 1806, 
and resided there until twenty-two years of 
age, when he came to Illinois and located 
in what is now Palmyra township, Lee 
county, which was his home until his death 
in 1885. His first tract comprised one 
hundred and twenty acres, to which he later 
added fifty acres. In politics he was a 
Republican in later life, and religiously 
was a Baptist. In his family were eight 
children, seven of whom are yet living. 
Mary first married Rodney Mason, of Lee 
county, and afterwards John Lawrence, of 
the same county. Rebecca, one of the 
first white children born in Lee county, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



= 23 



married Thomas Ayers, who is now de- 
ceased, and a brother of William Ayers. 
She now resides in Di.xon, Illinois. Wain- 
wright married Lydia Sayres, who died 
leaving two children who reside in Dixon. 
Bruce is a farmer residing near Dorchester, 
Nebraska. Henry A. is next in order of 
birth. Frederick is in the flour and feed 
business in Seward, Nebraska. Abner, when 
last heard from, resided in St. Louis, Mis- 
souri. Eunice married William Ayers, and 
they now reside in Hardin county, Iowa. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 
hood on the home farm in Lee county, and 
was educated in the public schools. When 
seventeen j'ears of age he entered the store 
of Willis G. House, of Dixon, Illinois, where 
he remained five years as a clerk. About 
1869, in company with his brother, Wain- 
wright, and his cousin, Clinton Coe, he 
bought three hundred and twenty acres of 
land in Woosung township, Ogle county. 

They were all single men, and kept 
" bach " while improving their place. Aft- 
er working the farm for several years and 
putting it under good improvement, they 
divided the land, one hundred and sixty 
acres falling to our subject, which is com- 
prised in his present farm. 

On the 24th of July, 1872, Mr. Parks 
was united in marriage with Miss Marcia I. 
Hathaway, who was born in Grand Detour, 
Illinois, and daughter of Stephen and So- 
phronia (Wetherby) Hathaway, the latter 
being the first white woman to locate in that 
village. By this union were two daughters 
who died in infancy. They have now one 
daughter, Selma lone, who is a joj' and a 
comfort to them. 

Stephen E. Hathaway, the father of 
Mrs. Parks, was born in Barnard, Windsor 
county, Vermont, October 15, 181 5, and 

24 



there grew to manhood. In 1836 he came 
west and located in Grand Detour, where 
he engaged in work at his trade of wagon- 
maker, a business which he has followed 
throughout life. For the last ten years, 
however, he has lived retired, making his 
home with our subject. Sophronia Weth- 
erby was a daughter of Charles and Sarah 
(Hurd) Wetherby, and was born in Wor- 
cester, Massachusetts, August 31, 18 16. 
She was a maiden of sixteen or seventeen 
when she came with the first colony to 
Grand Detour. Among those in that col- 
ony were Leonard Andrus, Willard and 
Harry House and Mrs. Willard House. 
They crossed the river by ferry, and in go- 
ing over Mrs. House playfully declared her 
intention of being the first white woman to 
set foot in Grand Detour, but Harry House, 
in jest, detained her, while Miss Wetherby, 
taking advantage of the opportunity, stepped 
ashore, and therefore was the first. To 
Stephen Hathaway and wife two children 
were born — Marcia I., now Mrs. Parks; and 
Wells F. , now a resident of Dixon. Mrs. 
Hathaway died October 12, 1867. 

Commencing life without means, Mr. 
Parks has been fairly successful, and what 
he has he owes to no one save his faithful 
wife, who has been to him a true helpmeet. 
They have toiled together and the result is 
shown by their home surroundings, their 
place being in excellent repair, and every- 
thing about it showing that it is controlled 
by a master mind. In politics he is a Re- 
publican, and religiously a Baptist, holding 
membership with the church in Dixon. In 
the work of the church he has taken great 
interest, and contributes liberally of his 
means to its support. He has taken inter- 
est also in educational matters, and has 
served as school director for some years, 



224 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and has filled other offices in the township 
with credit to himself and to his constitu- 
ents. 



ERASTUS W. SCHRYVER, who owns 
and operates a valuable farm of one 
hundred and sixty acres on section 34, 
Eagle Point township, first came to Ogle 
county in the spring of 1839, and throuhgout 
the greater part of his life has been promi- 
nently identified with its agricultural inter- 
ests. He was born in Andes, Delaware 
county. New York, September 16, 1829, a 
son of Matthew and Ann (Webster)Schryver, 
also natives of that county. The maternal 
grandfather, Elijah Webster, was a near rel- 
ative of the great statesman, Daniel Webster. 
The father of our subject, who was born 
in 1797, spent his early life in his native 
state, working at farm labor, on the canal 
or at anything he could find to do. Coming 
west in 1839, he took up a claim of one 
hundred and sixty acres of land in what 
is now Eagle township, Ogle county, up- 
on which he built a cabin, which was the 
home of the family for a number of years, 
while he fenced, broke and cultivated 
his farm. He set out an orchard, later built 
a good frame house and barn, and trans- 
formed the wild land into highly cultivated 
fields. He departed this life in 1872, his 
wife December 13, 1880, and both were 
buried in the United Brethren church ceme- 
tery, where a monument now marks their 
last resting place. Both were active mem- 
bers of the Methodist Episcopal church, 
were consistent Christian people, and had 
the respect and esteem of all who knew them. 
Erastus W. Schryver is the third in or- 
der of birth in a family of six children, five 
sons and one daughter, who reached years 



of maturity. John Henry, the eldest, mar- 
ried and settled in Ogle count)', where he 
died in 1867; Jesse is a farmer of Eagle 
Point township; Samuel B. also located 
here after his marriage, but later removed 
to Hardin county, Iowa, where his death oc- 
curred in 1897; George is a farmer of 
Minnesota; and Eliza Jane Ann is the wife 
of Henry Landers, of Hardin county, Iowa. 

The subject of this review was a lad of 
ten years when he came with his parents to 
Ogle county, and in the development and 
improvement of the old home farm he bore 
an important part, remaining with his father 
until he attained his majority. His school 
privileges were limited, so that he is mostly 
self-educated. In 1850 he went to Cali- 
fornia by way of Omaha, where a wagon 
train was made up to cross the plains. The 
party started with four yoke of oxen, but on 
reaching their destination had but one yoke 
remaining, having been six months and fif- 
teen days upon the road. Mr. Schryver 
arrived at the mines September 16, of that 
year, and for nearly three years was en- 
gaged in hunting the yellow metal with a 
fair degree of success. In the spring of 
1853 he started eastward, leaving San Fran- 
cisco February i, and by way of the Isth- 
mus of Panama and Aspinwall proceeding 
to New York city, where they arrived on 
the 2Sth of that month. From New York 
he went to Chicago and from there home. 

In Eagle Point township Mr. Schryver 
bought eighty acres of land, only five acres 
of which had been broke and a few fruit 
trees set out. To the further improvement 
and cultivation of his farm he at once turned 
his attention, and in 1856 he erected there- 
on a good residence. Selling the place in 
1864, he went to Idaho by means of teams 
and engaged in mining for a year and a half. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



225 



returning to Ogle county by the same means 
in the fall of 1866. He then purchased his 
present place of one hundred and sixty 
acres, and he now owns another farm of 
eighty-seven and a half acres two miles 
farther east. Upon his home place he has 
built a commodious and pleasant residence, 
a good barn, granary and cribs, and has set 
out an orchard and ornamental trees, and 
now has one of the neatest and best im- 
proved places of Eagle Point township. In 
connection with general farming he is inter- 
ested in breeding and raising stock of good 
grades, and is accounted one of the success- 
ful farmers and stock-raisers of the county. 
On the iGth of April, 1857, in Ogle 
county, Mr. Schryver was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Lucinda Landes, a native of 
Niles, Michigan, and a daughter of Solomon 
and Elizabeth (Detamore) Landes, natives 
of Rockingham county, Virginia, where 
they were reared and married. The father, 
who was born in 1806, took his family to 
Michigan at an early day, and after spend- 
ing six years there, came to Ogle county, 
Illinois, in October, 1835, being among the 
first settlers here. He took up a claim, and 
from the wild land developed a good farm, 
upon which he died in 1893, honored and 
respected by all who knew him. He was 
twice married, Mrs. Schryver's mother hav- 
ing died in 1S66, and both were laid to rest 
in the United Brethren church cemetery. 
Mr. and Mrs. Schryver have passed almost 
their entire lives together, as they were 
reared in the same neighborhood, attended 
the same school, and in company with her 
family she went to California with him in 
1850, and returned together by way of the 
Isthmus. After their marriage she accom- 
panied him on going to Idaho, and their 
married life has been a most happy one, as 



they have shared with each other its joys 
and sorrows, its adversity and prosperity. 
They have two sons: Albert, residing on 
the home place, is married and has three 
children: George, Lucinda and Erastus; 
and Fletcher, a farmer of Eagle Point town- 
ship, is married and has one daughter, 
Anna. 

Politically Mr. Schryver has been a life- 
long Democrat, casting his first presidential 
ballot for Franklin Pierce in 1852, while in 
California. At local elections, however, he 
endeavors to support the best men for the 
office, regardless of party affiliations, but he 
has never sought nor desired political pre- 
ferment for himself. His life is exemplary 
in many respects and he has the esteem and 
confidence of the entire community in which 
he has so long made his home and where he 
is so widely known. 



SOLOMON BELL BOWERMAN, M. D. , 
a prominent and successful physician 
and surgeon of Leaf River, Ogle county, 
was born near Harrisburg, Dauphin county, 
Pennsylvania, March 3, 1 830, a son of John 
A. Bowerman and grandson of William 
Bowerman, both natives of the Keystone 
state. The kingdom of Holland, which has 
given to the world one of its hardiest races 
of people, sheltered the paternal ancestors 
of our subject, but the family was founded 
in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, at an 
early day. On reaching manhood John A. 
Bowerman, our subject's father, married 
Miss Ann Maria Woland, a native of Dauphin 
county and a daughter of John Woland, who 
was born in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania. 
They continued to make their home in that 
state throughout life, the mother dying in 
1854 and the father in 1894, at the ripe old 



126 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



age of eighty-five years. By occupation he 
was a farmer. They reared a family of 
seven children, four sons and three daugh- 
ters, all of whom are still living. 

In the county of his nativity Dr. Bower- 
man spent his boyhood and youth, received 
good common-school advantages and also 
attended the Perrysburg Seminary for a 
time. Subsequently he engaged in teaching 
school there for several years. He first 
came to Ogle county, Illinois, in 1858, and 
taught school for a time in Leaf River 
township, but in the spring of 1859 returned 
to his native state. He had previously 
devoted his vacations and leisure time to 
the study of medicine for some years, and on 
his return to Pennsylvania took his first 
course of lectures at the old Philadelphia 
Medical College. After completing the 
course he returned home and engaged in 
practice in his old neighborhood until the 
outbreak of the Civil war. 

The Doctor was then serving as lieuten- 
ant-colonel of the uniformed militia of 
Pennsylvania, and in November, 1S62, en- 
listed for one year in Company A, One 
Hundred and Seventy-second Pennsylvania 
Volunteer Infantry. On the organization 
of the company he was elected first lieuten- 
ant, and in January, 1863, was promoted to 
the captaincy, in which capacity he served 
until mustered out at the close of his term 
in September, 1863. He was first on de- 
tached duty and had charge of the artillery 
at Yorktown, Virginia, but later the regi- 
ment was transferred to the Eleventh Corps, 
Army of the Potomac. During the winter 
of 1863-4 Dr. Bowerman attended two 
courses of medical lectures at Philadelphia, 
and was later engaged in practice for a short 
time, but in 1864 re-enlisted in his country's 
service, and was commissioned captain of 



Company A, Two Hundred and Tenth Penn- 
sylvania Volunteer Infantry. With his 
command he participated in the battles of 
Hatcher's Run, Dapey's Mills, Gravelly 
Run, the engagements in front of Peters- 
burg, and the battle of Five Forks. They 
continued the pursuit of the rebel army 
until Lee surrendered to Grant at Appo- 
mattox Court House. Our subject was 
breveted major and commanded the regi- 
ment in front of Petersburg and at Five 
Forks, and later took part in the grand 
review at Washington, District of Columbia, 
in which city he was mustered out in August, 
1S65. 

Returning to Philadelphia, Dr. Bower- 
man again attended lectures for three terms, 
and was graduated from the Eclectic Med- 
ical College of Philadelphia, in the class of 
1 866. After two years practice at his old 
home in Dauphin county he came to Illi- 
nois, arriving in Ogle county, August 20, 
1868. Locating in Lightsville, he resumed 
practice and as time passed his patronage 
rapidly increased until he had all that he 
could attend to, and he still enjoys a large 
and remunerative practice. 

Dr. Bowerman was married in Ogle 
county, in 1873, to Miss Margaret Motter, 
a native of Pennsylvania, and a daughter of 
Leonard Motter, who located here in 1859. 
They liave become the parents of four chil- 
dren, as follows: Hughlins E. , acquired 
his literary education in the home school 
and the Wells school of Oregon, and after 
studying medicine with his father for some 
time, he attended lectures at Bennett Med- 
ical College, Chicago, where he was gradu- 
ated in the class of 1897. He is now suc- 
cessfully engaged in practice with his fa- 
ther. Adda is the wife of Elmer Myers, of 
Leaf River township. Anna and Minnie 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



127 



are both at home with their parents. Mrs. 
Bowerman is a member of the Evangelical 
church, and the family is one of prominence 
in the best social circles of the community. 
Politically the Doctor is identified with 
the Republican party, and he has taken an 
active and prominent part in public affairs. 
He served for two years as assessor of his 
township, four years as justice of the peace 
and as supervisor two terms. While a 
member of the count}' board he was chair- 
man of the committee on education, for nine 
years was a member of the local school 
board, and has been an important factor in 
raising the standard of the schools in Ogle 
county. Fraternally he is an honored mem- 
ber of the State Eclectic Medical Society, 
and he stands deservedly high among his 
professional brethren. Wherever he goes 
he wins friends and has the happy faculty 
of being able to retain them. His popu- 
larity has made him a great favorite in all 
circles. 



NOAH PRESTON, a representative and 
leading farmer of Marion township, 
residing on section },},, is a fair specimen of 
the sturdy agriculturist who have so largely 
assisted in the development of Ogle count)'. 
Here he has met with success in his under- 
takings and is now the owner of two val- 
uable farms near the village of Byron. 

Mr. Preston was born in Oneida county, 
New York, November 29, 183S, and is a 
grandson of Noah Preston, Sr. , an early 
settler of that count}', who was born in 
1763, in Connecticut, and was reared in 
that state. He was a soldier of the war of 
1812, and died April 9, 1835, while his 
wife, Honor Preston, who was born May 
28, 1766, died November 22, 1847. The 



birth of the father, John S. Preston, oc- 
curred in Oneida count}', in 1804, and there 
he was married, May 14, 1834, to Miss 
Amanda Tuttle, a daughter of Lyman Tut- 
tle. She died in Oneida county, and he 
was again married, December 27, 1837, his 
second union being with Mrs. Elmira Rob- 
bins, also a native of Oneida county, and a 
daughter of Arnasa Barnes. Mr. Preston 
was a well-educated man and for nine years 
successfully followed the teacher's profes- 
sion in the Empire state. Later he located 
on a farm and devoted his attention to agri- 
culture. In 1854 he came to Ogle county, 
Illinois, arriving here May 10, and joining 
his brother, who had located here in 1S52. 
He purchased land and improved the farm 
on which our subject is now living, making 
his home there until called from this life 
September 2, 1879, at the ripe old age of 
seventy-five years. His wife survived him 
for some time, dying May 13, 1888, at the 
age of seventy-seven, and both were laid to 
rest in Stillman cemetery. Noah is the eld- 
est of the four children born of the second 
marriage of both parents, the others being 
John D. , a resident of Shelbina, Shelby coun- 
ty, Missouri; Anianda, widow of Silas No- 
ble, of Marion township. Ogle county; and 
Sarah A., widow of Dr. Delos Hurlbut and 
a resident of Iowa. 

Noah Preston was a lad of fourteen 
years when he came with his parents to 
Ogle county, and on the home farm grew to 
manhood. After arriving at mature years 
he took charge of the farm and cared for 
his parents during their declining years. 
On their deaths he came into possession 
of the place and now gives his entire 
attention to its cultivation and improvement. 
On the 4th of June, 1865, in Marion town- 
ship, was celebrated his marriage with Miss 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Ruth A. Baker, a daughter of Warren 
Baker, of Oneida county. New York. She 
came to Ogle county with her brother, 
Amasa Baker, who graduated at Mt. Morris 
College and engaged in teaching here for 
some years. Later he went to Kansas, there 
married and spent the remainder of his life. 
Mrs. Preston is also a native of Oneida 
county, New York, and was educated at the 
Holland Patent Academy, New York, where 
she was a classmate of President Cleveland's 
two sisters and one brother. She has often 
heard the President's father preach. After 
leaving school she successfully engaged in 
teaching in her native state and also after 
coming to Ogle county, in 1861. Mr. and 
Mrs. Preston have a family of si.x children, 
as follows: Olive, now the wife of Elsworth 
McNeal, a farmer, mechanic and carpenter, 
of Marion township; Lucy, wife of Henry 
Alfred, a farmer of the same township; Nel- 
lie, Edna, Rossiter and Myrtle, all at home. 
The children have all been well educated 
and are an honor to their worthy parents. 

Since casting his first presidental vote 
for Abraham Lincoln in 1S60, Mr. Preston 
has been a stalwart supporter of the men 
and measures of the Republican party, but 
he has never cared for official honors. He 
has ever used his influence to secure good 
schools and for some years was an active 
and capable member oi the school board. 
In the Methodist Episcopal church he and 
his wife hold membership, and in the esteem 
and confidence of their fellow citizens they 
hokl an enviable position. 



DANIEL WORTHINGTON YOUNG, 
one of the prominent and highly re- 
spected residents of Rockvale township, is 
the subject of this sketch. He was born 



July 4, 1844, on his father's farm in Ore- 
gon township. He received his education 
first at the district school and later at 
Mount Morris, where he attended the 
Rock River Seminary. He is the son of 
William and Nancy (Long) Young, who 
left their home in Maryland for the " far 
west " in 1843. They were farmers by oc- 
cupation, and when coming to Illinois made 
the journey by team, the only method of 
traveling across the country in pioneer days, 
and which required about three months' 
time. They went direct to Ogle county, 
where Mr. Young's death occurred in 1S89. 
He rests in Salem meeting house ceme- 
tery. Pine Creek township. Mrs. Young 
was born in 1819, and was the daughter of 
Uauiel and Elizabeth Long, and married 
Mr. Young at the age of si.xteen. She was 
one of twelve children, nine girls and three 
boys, all of whom grew to maturity. Her 
death occurred in 1870, at the age of fifty- 
one. 

Mr. and Mrs. Young were blessed with 
ten children. Elizabeth, the eldest, is liv- 
ing at Mount Morris, and is the widow of 
Samuel Price. George married Mary Wag- 
ner, and they occupy the homestead in Ore- 
gon township. William and Joshua died 
when very young. Daniel \\'orthington, of 
this writing, was the fifth child. Henry 
married Miss drover, of Manson, Iowa, and 
is a physician of considerable note at that 
place. Mary, the seventh child, died when 
two years of age. B. Frank is a pharma- 
cist in Manson, Iowa, where he married 
Miss Nettie Grover, a sister of Mrs. Henry 
Young. Amanda married Henry C. Muma, 
and is living in Pine Creek townshiii. The 
youngest child, Charles C, died at the age 
of four years. 

Mr. Young, the subject of this sketch. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



attended school and helped his father until 
he was twenty-one years of age, when he 
left school and farmed with his father until 
his marriage, four years later; at the expira- 
tion of this time he rented land in Oregon 
township, where he and his family resided 
for two }'ears, moving later to Mount Mor- 
ris township, where they lived for ele\'en 
years, and in 1S83 moved to Rockvale, 
where Mr. Young purchased one hundred 
and si.xty acres on section 19. This prop- 
erty, under his management, has become a 
well-regulated and valuable tract, yielding 
its owner a handsome income. 

When tweiitj'-five years of age Mr. 
Young was united in marriage to Ann Eliza- 
beth W'agner. To them five children have 
been born. The eldest child, Edith, is at 
home with her parents. She received her 
education at the district school and at 
Mount Morris Seminary. Susie also re- 
ceived her education at the above named 
school. She is the wife of N. F. Thomas, a 
farmer of Mount Morris township, and is 
the mother of one child, H. Worthington. 
Charles \\'orthington is, at the present 
writing, at home. He has just finished a 
course of pharmacy at the Normal School, 
Valparaiso, Indiana, preparatory to entering 
business. Nannie, the fourth in order of 
birth, married R. C. Gaffin, a farmer in 
Leaf River township. The}' have one child, 
a daughter, Dorathy M. The youngest 
child, Alice, is living at home, attending the 
district school. 

Mrs. Young is the daughter of Joseph 
and Susan (Schecter) Wagner, and is the 
seventh in order of birth. Her parents 
came to Oregon township in the pioneer 
days, and purchased three hundred and 
twenty acres, at a dollar and twenty-five 
cents per acre. They made the journey 



overland by team, stopping at Springfield, 
Ohio, for the winter, and reaching Ogle 
county, in 1837. Mr. Wagner was a clear- 
sighted and successful man of busmess. He 
supervised the work on his farm in Oregon, 
and was a stock-dealer and shipper; he was 
also a banker, having been connected with 
the Exchange Bank, of Oregon. Mr. Wag- 
ner died March 10, 1889, and his wife, 
three months earlier. 

Mrs. Young is a member of the German 
Baptist church. Her great-grandparents 
were people of considerable prominence, 
as were their children after them. Captain 
B. R. Wagner, who was for several terms 
sheriff of Ogle county, died in 1897 from 
the effects of a bullet received in the battle 
of Shiloh. Three uncles served in the war. 
Captains D. C. and Nehemiah were cap- 
tured and held as prisoners of war at Ma- 
con, Georgia. 

Our subject is a Republican in politics, 
but has never cared for a position in public 
office, nor for social organizations. He is 
strictly a home man, more interested in his 
family and the education of his children 
than in anything else, his children being 
more than ordinarily bright and well edu- 
cated. 



GEORGE HETTIGER, the leading mer- 
chant tailor of Oregon, Illinois, is a 
native of Louisville, Kentucky. His father, 
Joseph Hettiger, was born in Munich, Ba- 
varia, and came to the United States at the 
age of five years with his father, Jacob Het- 
tiger, who died in Evansville, Indiana, al- 
though he first settled in Louisville, Ken- 
tucky, where Joseph grew to manhood and 
spent the remainder of his life, his death 



2^0 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



occurring April 4, 1879. He was by occu- 
pation a contractor and builder. In politics 
he was a Union Democrat, and during the 
rebellion was a member of the home guards. 
Religiously he was a Roman Catholic, of 
which body his wife is also a member. He 
married Susanna Lehnen, a native of Trier, 
Germany, born near Frankfort on the Main. 
She came to the United States with her 
parents, who settled in Dubois county, In- 
diana. She is still living in Louisville, 
Kentucky. Joseph and Susanna Hettiger 
were the parents of ten children, as follows: 
George, our subject; Mary, wife of Edward 
Kurtz, of Chicago; Ferdinand, living in St. 
Louis, Mo. ; Johanna, in a convent in Mex- 
ico; Martin, living in St. Louis; Susie, who 
died in childhood; Susie (2), who died in 
infancy; Frank, living in New Orleans, 
and Edward, who lives in Louisville, Ken- 
tucky. 

The early life of our subject was spent 
in his native city, where he attended the 
parochial schools, and at the age of sixteen 
years commenced to learn the tailor's trade. 
After completing his trade, he hrst went to 
St. Louis, where he worked as a journey- 
man, and later worked in Cincinnati, Chi- 
cago and other places, finally locating in 
Bloomington, Illinois, in 1878, where he 
lived nine years, and in 1887 came to Ore- 
gon, Illinois, where he has since continued 
to reside. On coming to Oregon he first 
engaged as cutter for Mr. Snyder, and re- 
mained in his employ for five years. He 
then commenced in business for himself on 
Washington street, between Fourth and 
Fifth, where he yet remains. 

Mr. Hettiger was married July 15, 1875, 
at Coluiiibus, Ohio, to Kate Whiteaker, of 
Fort Wayne, Indiana, daughter of D. L. and 
Sarah (Zimmerman) Whiteaker. Her fa- 



ther was a prominent lawyerof Fort Wayne, 
Indiana, but is now deceased. Her mother 
is yet living, making her home in Grand 
Rapids, Minnesota. They had a large fami- 
ly, but all are now deceased, but the wife of 
our subject; Robert E., living in Minnesota; 
and Rosa, wife of Samuel Stell, of Dixon, 
Illinois. An uncle of Mrs. Hettiger, John 
Whiteaker, was at one time governor of 
Oregon, and is still living at Eugene City, 
in that state. 

Mr. and Mrs. Hettiger are the parents 
of three children: George Eugene, Jessie 
May and Robert E. The last named died 
in infancy. Miss Jessie received a fine mu- 
sical education, and in this direction is pos- 
sessed of much talent. She is proficient on 
the violin and piano, and these instruments 
she has played frequently in public in the 
different cities of the state. Her brother, 
who is also a good pianist, often accom- 
panies his sister. October 18, 1898, Jessie 
M. Hettiger was united in marriage with 
Herman Leborich, The National clothing 
merchant of Oregon. 

Religiously Mrs. Hettiger is a member of 
the Christian church. In politics Mr. Het- 
tiger is a Republican, and has taken an act- 
ive part in public matters. He is a pro- 
gressive and representative citizen of Ore- 
gon, and was elected alderman of the third 
ward in 1896 and re-elected in 1898. He is 
a member of Oregon Lodge, No. 420, F. & 
A. M., Economy Camp, M. W. A., and of 
the Ivnights of Pythias. His son is also a 
member of Oregon Lodge, F. & A. M. 

Mr. Hettiger is a thorough merchant 
tailor, and understands every branch of the 
business. He is regarded as one of the 
best cutters and fitters in the county, his 
suits being neat and artistic, and alwaj's 
giving satisfaction. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



!3i 



WILLIAM H. MILLER, furniture deal- 
er and undertaker, Mt. Morris, Illi- 
nois, is a worthy representative of the mer- 
cantile interests of the place. He is a na- 
tive of Washington county, Maryland, born 
July 23, 1S50, and is a son of Upton and 
Maria Louisa (Davis) Miller, both of whom 
were natives of the same county and state, 
the former born March 2, 1828, and the 
latter October i, 1831. They were married 
April 22, 1S49, at Bakersville, Maryland, 
where her father, Solomon Davis, was en- 
gaged in the tailoring business. Her father 
never came west, but spent his entire life 
in his native state. Upton and Maria L. 
Miller became the parents of six children. 
William H., the subject of this sketch. 
Cyrus, born February 23, 18^2, died young. 
Eliza Jane, born July 8, 1855, married B. 
F. Thomas, and si.\ children were born to 
them. She died February 5, 1897. He is 
engaged in business in Oregon, Illinois. 
John D., born October 26, 1858, married 
Carrie Stone, and they had six children, 
three of whom are now deceased. He is 
engaged in the harness business at Mt. 
Morris. Mary Elizabeth died in infancy. 
Thomas M., born September i, 1863, is 
making his home with our subject. 

In 1857 Upton Miller came with his 
family to Ogle county, locating in Mt. 
Morris, where he worked at his trade of 
carpentering and cabinet making until the 
close of the Civil war, when he commenced 
the undertaking business, buying out An- 
drew Newcomer. In 1872 he added the 
furniture department, and in time did the 
leading business in the place, carrying a 
large and complete stock. In 1892 he re- 
tired from active business, since which time 
he has done a little in the cabinet-making 
line, but has practically been living a retired 



life. His wife died September 25, 1886, 
her death being quite sudden, caused by 
hemorrhage of the lungs. She was a kind 
and loving wife and mother, a member of 
the Lutheran church, in which faith she 
died. He was again married, in iSSS, 
chosing as a companion Mrs. Catherine 
(Koontz) Newcomer. In politics he is a 
Republican, and religiously is identified with 
the Brethren. 

The subject of this sketch came to Ogle 
county with his parents in 1857, and in the 
schools of Mt. Morris obtained his primary 
education. This was supplemented by an 
attendance at Rock River Seminary, now 
Mt. Morris College, which ended his school 
life. After leaving school, he learned the 
undertaking business, and in 1887 went to 
Sterling, Illinois, where Professor Sullivan 
had organized a class in embalming. In 
1896 he attended Champion College of Em- 
balming, from which he received a diploma. 
He has since passed a successful examina- 
tion by the state authorities, and is ranked 
as one of the best embalmers in the state. 
For twenty years he worked for his father, 
at the expiration of which time he pur- 
chased the business, and is now sole pro- 
prietor of the best furniture establishment 
in Mt. Morris, and one of the best in the 
entire county. He carries a fine line of the 
best grades of furniture, and always en- 
deavors to keep up with the times. 

Mr. Miller was united in marriage De- 
cember 25, 1878, with Miss Mary Ellen 
Wallace, born in Mt. Morris township, Ogle 
county, July 27, i860, and a daughter of 
Lawrence and Elmira L. (Leek) Wallace, the 
former a native of Maryland, born August 
26, 1824, and the latter of Pennsylvania 
born August 2, 1841. Her father came 
to Ogle county a young man, and is num- 



23: 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



bered among its early settlers. He is the 

son of Otho and (Duggan) Wallace. 

His father was a farmer and came west at 
an early day. Louisa (Leek) Wallace is the 
daughter of Jacob and Emily (Allen) Leek, 
the former born January 25, 1797, and the 
latter July 7, 181 1. The former died in 
Pennsylvania, and later his widow came 
to Ogle county, locating in Lincoln town- 
ship, where she lived until within three 
or four years of her death, when she 
moved to the home of her daughter, Mrs. 
Wallace, in Mt. Morris township. Law- 
rence Wallace and wife are the parents 
of seven children, of whom the wife of our 
subject is the eldest. Susan, born July 10, 
1863, married Henry Bearman, a farmer of 
Mt. Morris township, and they have three 
children. Emily, born December 16, 1865, 
married Gray Watts, also a farmer of Mt. 
Morris township, and they have three chil- 
dren. Lewis, born December 10, 1867, is 
engaged in well drilling. William H. born 
October 2, 1873, died at the age of eight- 
een months. John, born February 5, 1877, 
is farming in Mt. Morris township. Ida, 
born March 6, 1880, married Elmer Baker, 
and they reside in Mt. Morris. Lawrence 
Wallace is a carpenter by trade, and has 
followed that occupation the greater part of 
his life. He is now living on a small farm 
in Mt. Morris township, practically retired. 
To our subject and wife three children 
have been born: Maude Louisa, born July 
25, 1882; Edith May, February 27, 1884; 
and Florence Eva, July 29, 1886. They 
are giving their children good educational 
advantages, thus preparing them for useful 
lives. The entire family are members of the 
Lutheran church, Mr. Miller being secretary 
and treasurer of the church in Mt. Morris. 
All are active workers in the church. 



Fraternally, he is a member of Elysian 
Lodge, No. 56, I. O. O. F. , of Mt. Morris, and 
has passed all the chairs. He is at present 
permanent secretary of the lodge, which 
position he has held since passing through 
the chairs, a period of nearly twenty-five 
years. Politically he is a thorough Repub- 
lican, and he has been quite active in local 
politics. He has been town clerk for the 
past twenty years, village treasurer since 
1890, and school treasurer since 1892, and 
is now serving in each of these offices. 
These facts testify as to the standing of Mr. 
Miller in the community which has been his 
home from early childhood, a period of 
forty-two years. Suffice it to say that no 
man in the community is more highly 
honored. 



ALFRED HARRISON, a highly es- 
teemed and worthy citizen of Byron, 
Illinois, who is now living retired from act- 
ive business cares, was born in Yorkshire, 
England, July 12, 1832, and is a son of 
George and Mary (Brown) Harrison, who 
spent their entire lives in that coun- 
try, where the father worked as a common 
laborer or at farming. In the family were 
three children, of whom one died in child- 
hood, and Mrs. Emma Wise is now a resi- 
dent of the city of York, England. 

Our subject had but little opportunity 
of attending school in early life, and is 
therefore almost wholly self-educated. He 
was reared on a farm, where he began work 
when a mere boy. Saving his earnings, he 
and his aunt, Elizabeth Steele, came to 
America in 1855, taking passage on a sail- 
ing vessel, the Albion, at Liverpool. They 
were six weeks upon the Atlantic and en- 
countered one fearful storm, which did 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



233 



much damage to the rigging. The ship 
carried five hundred passengers and a crew 
of fifty men, and finally arrived at New York 
in safety. Mr. Harrison and his aunt pro- 
ceeded at once to Rockford, Illinois, where 
they joined some English friends, and for 
two seasons he worked by the month in 
Winnebago county. In 1S61 he bought 
forty acres of land in Byron township. Ogle 
county, which was covered with timber, and 
upon his place erected a small shanty, in 
which he lived for some years, while he 
cleared, fenced, broke and improved his 
land. To the original purchase he later 
added twenty acres adjoining, making a 
good farm of sixty acres, on which he 
erected a large and substantial residence, 
good barns, sheds, etc., converting it into 
one of the best improved and most desirable 
farms of the locality. For thirty-six years 
he successfully engaged in its cultivation, 
but in 1895 sold the place and removed to 
Byron, where he bought a lot and erected 
a neat residence that is still his home. 

Mr. Harrison was not only without 
means on his arrival in this country, but 
had borrowed money to pay his passage, 
and the success that he has achieved here 
is certainly well deserved. By his own la- 
bor, enterprise and economy he has accum- 
ulated a comfortable competence, and is 
now able to spend his declining years in 
ease and quiet. In political sentiment he is 
a Democrat, but formerly was a Republic- 
an, casting his first ballot for Abraham Lin- 
coln, and later supporting Grant for the 
presidency. He has never aspired to office, 
preferring to give his undivided attention to 
his business interest. He and Mr. and Mrs. 
Wright were among the first settlers of this 
section of the county, and our subject 
worked for them for several years. In 1876 



he and their son visited the Centennial ex- 
position at Philadelphia, where they spent 
three weeks in sightseeing. They also vis- 
ited New York city, had a most pleasant 
and profitable time, and returned home 
feeling much better. 



HENRY SCHRADER has been one of 
Ogle county's worthy and honored 
citizens since August, 1840, and was for many 
years actively identified with its agricultural 
interest, but is now living retired upon his 
pleasant farm three miles east of Leaf River. 
Like many of our best citizens he is a na- 
tive of Maryland, born in Washington 
county, September 8, 1817. The father, 
Henry Schrader, Sr. , was born in the same 
state, of German parentage, and in Wash- 
ington county engaged in farming during 
early life. Selling his place there in 1827, 
the father removed to Mansfield, Richland 
county, Ohio, where he resided for a few 
years, and from there went to Wayne 
county, Indiana, where he developed a farm 
in the midst of the forest and spent his re- 
maining years, dying in 1888, while his 
wife died three or four years previously. 
In his native state Henry Schrader, Sr., 
was united in marriage with Catherine 
Longman, who was born near Hagerstown, 
of German parentage, and until 1827 they 
made their home on the Schrader farm in 
that state. Our subject is one of a family 
of nine children, seven sons and two daugh- 
ters, but only two are now living, the other 
being Mrs. Sophia Layman, of Dublin, 
Wayne county, Indiana. 

Durmg his boyhood and youth Henry 
Schrader, Jr., assisted his father in opening 
up and carrying on the home farm, and 
at the age of twenty ye^rs began working 



^34 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



for others as a farm hand. In 1 840 he came 
to Illinois with his father and brother and 
located in Ogle county, where he worked 
for a cousin, Isaac Avery, for one year, and 
the following year also engaged in farming 
for others. The father and brother re- 
turned to Indiana later. 

On the loth of October, 1842, Mr. 
Schrader led to the marriage altar Miss 
Mahala Her, also a native of Washington 
county, Maryland, and a daughter of David 
and Mary (Hannon) Her, who were born 
in the same county, and came to Illinois in 
1837 with a colony of Maryland people. 
Mr. Her settled at North Grove, in Leaf 
River township. Ogle county, where he de- 
veloped a farm and spent his last years, 
dying at the advanced age of eighty-four. 
His wife survived him and departed this life 
at the age of eighty-five years. To Mr. 
and Mrs. Schrader were born five children, 
namely: Thomas, who married and died in 
Ogle county, leaving one child; Frank, a 
resident of Lightsville; Albert, a farmer of 
this county; George, who is carrying on the 
home farm; and Harriet, who married Mar- 
tin Light, but is now deceased. 

After his marriage Mr. Schrader rented 
land for several years and then bought a 
small place at North Grove, where he oper- 
ated in connection with rented land for 
some time. Selling that farm in 1866, he 
purchased eighty acres which were under 
cultivation and fenced. He erected thereon 
a small house into which the family moved, 
and has since made many valuable and use- 
ful improvements, which make it one of the 
most attractive places of the locality. Be- 
sides his property he also owns a small farm 
near Lightsville, on which his son Albert is 
now living. 

Politically Mr. Schrader is an old Jef- 



fersonian Democrat, but cast his first vote 
for William Henry Harrison in 1840, and has 
since supported every presidential candidate 
of the Democracy, He has served his fel- 
low citizens as school director and path- 
master, and in all the relations of life has 
been found true to every trust reposed in 
him. He and his estimable wife are faith- 
ful members of the Christian church at Leaf 
River, and as honored pioneer and highly 
respected citizens deser\e prominent men- 
tion in their county's history. 



CHARLES FRUIT, an enterprising farm- 
er, residing on section 2, Taylor town- 
ship, came to the United States in 1869, 
and has since been a resident of Ogle coun- 
ty and a thorough American citizen, one 
having at heart the interests of his adopted 
country. He was born near Gottenborg, 
Sweden, November 15, 1S49, ^"ci is the 
son of Gus and Johanna (Anderson) Fruit, 
both natives of the same country, and who 
came to this country in the spring of 1875 
and settled in Taylor township, where the 
husband and father worked at his trade of 
carpentering. They were the parents of si.K 
children, three of whom are now deceased. 
John died at the age of twelve years. 
Charles is the subject of this sketch. Ed- 
ward died at the age of seven years. Ma- 
tilda married C. A. Jacobson, and they 
reside in Falkeping, Sweden, where he is 
employed in the machine shops of a rail- 
road company. Carrie died when two years 
old. Addie married John Larson, and they 
live in Taylor township where he is engaged 
in farming. 

Charles Fruit grew to manhood in his 
native country and there obtained a fair edu- 
cation in the public schools. Desiring to 




CHARLES FRUIT. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



-Z7 



better his condition in life, and knowing of 
the possibilities in the new world, he deter- 
mined, if the opportunity was ever afforded 
him that he would emigrate to that land 
where even the very poorest might realize 
his heart's desire. When but twenty years 
old, he secured his parents' consent to try 
his fortunes in this land. Leaving his na- 
tive land on one of the ocean liners he 
crossed the ocean and after a voyage of 
eighteen days, during which time they en- 
countered some pretty severe weather, they 
landed at New York, and from there pro- 
ceeded direct to Rockford, Illinois, where 
he remained one year engaged in various 
employments, and then came to Ogle county 
and located in Taylor township, where he 
purchased a small farm some five years la- 
ter, having in the meantime assisted in the 
construction of the Chicago & Iowa rail- 
road. 

Mr. Fruit was married August 20, 1884, 
to Miss Annie Bronson, of Chicago, Illi- 
nois, and by this union two children were 
born, Ellen and Vanner, both of whom are 
now attending the district school. This 
wife died October 30, 1889, and Mr. Fruit, 
December 31, 1891, married Miss Selma 
Anderson, daughter of Carl and Johanna 
Anderson, natives of Sweden. The three 
children born of this union are George, 
Henry and Irma, the first named now being 
a student in the district school. 

Since locating on his present farm Mr. 
Fruit has given his attention to general 
farming. He has improved the place by 
tiling the land and the erection of wind 
mills, the building of necessary outbuild- 
ings, and the planting of orchard and shade 
trees. He has served his township as town 
clerk two years, town collector two years, 
and is now a school director. In politics 



he is a Republican. Religiously he is a 
Methodist, holding membership in the 
Methodist Episcopal church at Light House. 
He comes of a patriotic family, his pater- 
nal grandfather, J. Truit, serving in the 
war which his country had with Denmark. 



CHARLES BUSH. — Among the pro- 
gressive, energetic and successful farm- 
ers and stock dealers of Ogle county, who 
thoroughU' understand the vocation which 
they follow, and are consequently enabled 
to carry on their calling with profit to them- 
selves, is the subject of this sketch. He is 
actively engaged in agricultural pursuits on 
section 3, Eagle Point township, where he 
owns a valuable and well improved farm. 

Like many of our best citizens, Mr. Bush 
is a native of the Empire state, born in 
Ro.xbury, Delaware county, March 25, 1834. 
His father, Nicholas Bush, was born in 
the same county, May 31, 1803, and was a 
son of John Bush, a native of Fairfax, Vir- 
ginia, and a hero of the Revolutionary war, 
having aided the colonies in their struggle 
for independence. The great-grandfather 
of our subject was of English extraction and 
an early settler of the Old Dominion. At 
the close of the Revolution John Bush 
was discharged and mustered out in New 
York city, and then took up his residence 
as a pioneer in Delaware county. New York, 
where, in the midst of the wilderness, he 
cleared and developed a farm. There he 
died at the ripe old age of eighty years. 

On reaching man's estate, Nicholas 
Bush was married in his native county to 
Miss Lydia Wolcott, a native of Greene 
county. New York, and a daughter of Gid- 
eon Wolcott, an early settler of that coun- 
ty. He was a native of England and a son 



238 



THl' BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



of Francis Wolcott, who spent his entire 
life in that country. For some years after 
his marriage Mr. Bush continued to engage 
in farming and lumbering in New York, but 
in 1856 he started for Illinois, and on 
reaching Ogle county he purchased eighty 
acres of land in Eagle Point township, on 
which our subject now resides. A small 
house and barn had already been built and 
thirty-five acres fenced and broken. To its 
further improvement and cultivation he at 
once turned his attention, later erected 
larger and more subjectial buildings and 
added to the original purchase ninet\' acres. 
In connection with general farming he also 
engaged in stock raising. During his resi- 
dence in New York he affiliated with the 
Odd Fellows society, but never joined the 
order here. He died September 13, 1890, 
at the advanced age of eighty-seven years, 
and his wife departed this life July 2, 1S78, 
at the age of seventy-eight years, both being 
laid at rest in Eagle Point cemetery, where 
a neat monument has been erected to their 
memory. In their family were on!}- two 
children, the daughter being Nancy, who 
married and died in Ogle county in 1S58. 

Charles Bush, the only son, grew to 
manhood in Delaware county. New York, 
and completed a good education at Potts- 
ville Academy. In that county he was mar- 
ried April 4, 1S55, to Miss Hepsebah Booth, 
who was reared and educated there. Her 
parents, Levi and Phcebe (Harley) Booth, 
were natives of Connecticut and early set- 
tlers of Delaware county, being one of the 
first families to locate there. Mr. and Mrs. 
Piush have one daughter, Clara, now the 
wife of Joseph Sprecker, of Polo, by whom 
she has two children, Hepsebah and 
Charles Harry. She was born in Pittsford, 
Hillsdale county, Michigan, but was reared 



and educated in Ogle county, being a grad- 
uate of the Polo high school. She engaged 
in teaching for a time and her parents also 
followed that profession, both in theirnative 
county and after coming to Ogle county, 
Illinois, Mrs. Bush being a prominent teacher 
here for several years. 

In March, 1856, Mr. Bush accompanied 
his father on his removal to this county and 
assisted in carrying on the home farm for 
some time, after which he took complete 
charge of the same. In 1859, however, he 
went to Michigan and lived for some time 
in Hillsdale, Adrian and Allegan, being a 
conductor on the Michigan Southern & 
Northern Indiana railroad for ten years. 
He then returned to the farm in Ogle 
count}', and has since successfully managed 
the same. He has also engaged in feeding 
and shipping stock, and in his undertakings 
has met with well deserved success. He 
has made many improvements upon his 
place, including the erection of a commodi- 
ous and comfortable residence, a large gran- 
ary and other outbuildings, so that he now 
has one of the most desirable farms in this 
part of the county. 

Although his father was a Jeffersonian 
Democrat, Mr. Bush has been identified 
with the Republican party since casting his 
first vote for John C. Fremont in 1856, and 
has since supported every presidential can- 
didate of that party. As one of the leading 
and influential citizens of his community, he 
takes an active interest in local politics, has 
been a delegate to many county, congres- 
sional and state conventions, has served as 
township clerk fourteen years and been a 
member of the school board some years. 
He has proven a most competent and trust- 
worthy official, and commands the confi- 
dence and respect of all with whom he 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



239 



comes in contact either in private or public 
life. He is quite prominent in Masonic cir- 
cles, being a Knight Templar, a member of 
the blue lodge and chapter in Polo and the 
commandery at Dixon. His estimable wife 
holds membership in the Methodist Episco- 
pal church at Eagle Point, and likelier hus- 
band has a host of friends in this com- 
munity. 



BENJAMIN DOUGHTY, who, after the 
labors of a long and busy life, is spend- 
ing his later years in ease and retirement in 
the village of Byron, has made his home in 
Ogle county since January 16, 185S, and 
bore an active part in its early development 
and upbuilding. A native of England, he 
was born in Yorkshire, April 12, 1830, and 
is a son of Thomas and Mary Doughty, who 
spent their entire lives there. The father 
engaged ia farming or worked at anything 
which he could find to do, and died at the 
advanced age of eighty-nine years. Ben- 
jamin was the oldest of his five sons, all of 
whom reached manhood, but two are now 
deceased, while the other two, William and 
Thomas, still reside in England. 

Benjamin Doughty was reared on the 
farm and during his youth received a very 
limited education, but by reading and ob- 
servation in subsequent years he has become 
a well-informed man. He was married in 
Yorkshire, November 23, 1S57, the lady of 
his choice being Miss Elizabeth Wright, a 
native of that county, who was reared in 
the same village as her husband. A few 
days after their marriage they started for 
the new world, taking passage at Liverpool, 
November 28, on a sailing vessel, which 
finally reached New York, January 8, 1S58, 
after a long and tedious voyage of six weeks, 



during which they experienced much rough 
weather and several severe storms, which 
carried away some of the sails. On land- 
ing they came at once to Illinois, and after 
stopping a short time in Franklin Grove 
came to Byron, where they joined Mr. 
Doughty's uncle, John Doughty, who had 
located here aliuut 1S42 or 1843. 

Our subject went to work on a farm in 
Winnebago county for Alfred Bridgeland, 
also a native of England, and remained with 
him about seven months. Returning to 
Ogle county in 1859, he secured a position 
with Mr. Spalding, with whom he and his 
wife lived for one year. In 1859 he made 
his first purchase of forty acres of land, 
which he began to improve in 1861, at the 
same time operated rented land. He fenced 
his place, erected thereon good and sub- 
stantial buildings, and continued the work 
of development and cultivation for many 
years. As time advanced and he prospered 
in his undertakings he added more land to 
the original purchase, first forty acres and 
then twenty acres, making in all a fine and 
valuable farm of one hundred acres, pleas- 
antly located three miles and a half from 
Byron. He successfully carried on farming 
here until 1S90, when he sold out and pur- 
chased property in Byron, where he has 
since lived retired from active labor, in the 
enjoyment of the fruits of his former toil. 
The success that he has achieved in life is 
due entirely to his own unaided efforts, as 
he was in rather limited circumstances on 
coming to America, but by hard work, 
close application and guided by a sound 
judgment he has made for himself a com- 
fortable home and competence. 

Mr. Doughty has been called upon to 
mourn the loss of his wife, who passed away 
October 20, 1889, and was laid to rest in 



240 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Middle Creek cemetery, Winnebago coun- 
ty. In 1S90 he was joined by his cousin, 
Miss Emily Doughty, who has since been 
his housel<eeper. This estimable lady is 
also a native of Yorkshire, England, and a 
daughter of Charles Doughty. She came 
alone to America, and in 1892 returned to 
Yorkshire on a visit to family and friends. 
During the five weeks she remained in the 
old world she visited the cities of York and 
Leeds, and also the beautiful seaport town 
and pleasure resort of Scarborough. She 
has heard Spurgeon preach, has been in 
London, and has also seen Buckingham 
palace and Windsor castle. 

On becoming an American citizen, Mr. 
Doughty cast his first presidential vote for 
Abraham Lincoln in 1 8G4, and has since 
supported the Republican party. He has 
efficiently served as a member of the vil- 
lage board of Byron, and his duties, both 
public and private, have always been most 
faithfully and conscientiously discharged. 
Both he and his cousin were reared in the 
Episcopal faith, and are held in high re- 
spect by all who know them. 



NICHOLAS N. SHAVER, deceased, 
was a native of Delaware county, 
New 'S'ork, born September 11, 1809, and 
was the son of Jacob P. and Catherine 
Shaver, both of whom were natives of the 
same county and state, the former born 
May 20, 1775, and the latter April 14, 
1784. They were the parents of seven 
children. Catherine Shaver died in her 
native state, after vvhich her husband came 
west, where his death occurred many 3'ears 
ago. 

In his native state Nicholas N. Shaver 



grev/ to manhood, and in the common 
school received a limited education. He 
was reared to the life of a farmer, an occu- 
pation that he followed during his entire 
active life. He was twice married, his first 
union being with Miss Hannah Nicholson, 
who was probably a native of Delaware 
county, New York. Their marriage was 
celebrated May 13, 1840, and to them were 
born five children, three sons and two 
daughters; Arthur J., born February 21, 
1 841; Robert S., March 12, 1843; Mariette, 
April 24, 1845; Sophia, October 17, 1847; 
and Edward, October 15, 1850. The 
mother of these children died in 1852. 

On the 19th of June, 1854, Mr. Shaver 
was united in marriage with Miss Kate 
Voorhees, who was born in Sullivan coun- 
ty. New York, November 14, 1814, and the 
daughter of John C. and Nancy (Brown) 
Voorhees, natives of New York, but of 
German descent. They were the parents 
of nine children, who lived to be men and 
women. By occupation he was a farmer, 
one who attended strictly to his own affairs, 
and enjoyed the respect and confidence of 
his friends and neighbors. He never came 
west, but passed the last days of his life 
amid the familiar scenes of his native state. 
His wife also passed to her reward in her 
native state. 

Soon after his second marriage Mr. 
Shaver came with his wife and family to 
Ogle county and located in Buffalo town- 
ship, where he purchased a farm and en- 
gaged in agricultural pursuits. He was a 
good farmer, very industrious, and success 
crowned his efforts. In his old age he laid 
aside the cares of the farm and moved into 
the city of Polo, to enjoy the fruits of a life 
well spent. For years his face was a famil- 
iar one on the streets of the city, and those 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



241 



meeting him had a kindly greeting and a 
pleasant word. 

Politically Mr. Shaver was a Democrat, 
and a firm believer in the principles of the 
party as expounded by Jefferson and Jack- 
son. He was never, however, an office 
seeker, content always that others should 
have whatever honors office holding con- 
tained. He was a member of the Presby- 
terian church, in the doctrines and teach- 
ings of which he had unbounded faith. His 
good wife, who survives him, is also a mem- 
ber of that church. His death occurred 
February 19, 18S6, and his remains were 
laid to rest in the cemetery at the brick 
church in Eagle Point township, there to 
wait the resurrection day. "Blessed are 
the dead who die in the Lord, for they shall 
rest from their labors and their works shall 
follow them." 



JOHN B. WOODCOCK, a well-known 
and prominent agriculturist, residing on 
section t,^, Marion township, has for over 
fifty-four years been connected with the 
history of Ogle county and few, if any, have 
done more for its upbuilding. He has been 
a champion of every movement designed to 
promote the general welfare, a supporter of 
every enterprise for the public good, and 
has materially aided in the advancement of 
all social, industrial, educational and moral 
interests. 

Mr. Woodcock is a native of Canada, 
born near Prescott, Ontario, on the St. 
Lawrence river, October i, 1S23, and be- 
longs to quite an honored and distinguished 
family, which was founded in New England 
soon after the arrival of the Mayflower. 
His ancestors were originally from England 
and for several generations resided in the 

26 



United States. His great-grandfather on 
the paternal side took up arms against the 
mother country in the Revolutionary war, 
and for three years fought for the freedom 
of the colonies. One of his sons was also 
in the same struggle. The grandfather, 
Jonathan Woodcock, was a native of Con- 
necticut, but about 1790 removed to Can- 
ada, making his way through the dense 
forests with an ox team for about four hun- 
dred miles, it being a most tedious and re- 
markable trip. In the midst of the wilder- 
ness he hewed out a farm and there made 
his home until called from this life, at the 
age of fifty-five years. His wife lived to 
the advanced age of ninety-one years and 
died in Marion township. Ogle county, Illi- 
nois. 

Freeman Woodcock, the father of our 
subject, was born in the province of On- 
tario, Canada, March 12, 1S02, and was 
there reared amid pioneer scenes. He mar- 
ried Miss Elizabeth Bass, also a native of 
Canada, who was born in Ontario, October 
14, iSoo, and was a daughter of John Bass, 
whose early home was in Vermont. In 
Canada, Freeman Woodcock carried on 
business along various lines, being engaged 
in farming and merchandising, and also the 
manufacture of furniture, boots and shoes. 
In the springof 1 844 we find him and his fam- 
ily d// /•<>;//<■ for Illinois, joining our subject in 
Ogle county. In Nashua township they 
purchased about five hundred acres of par- 
tially improved land, but after operating it 
five years sold the place and in 1S50 bought 
two hundred acres on sections 27,31 and 32, 
Marion township, on which our subject now 
resides. Here a flouring mill, propelled by 
water power, had previously been built on 
Stillman creek, and this the father con- 
ducted until it was destroyed by ice in the 



24: 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



spring of 1857. It was rebuilt, however, 
the same season, but soon proved unprofit- 
able and the building was moved away and 
used for other purposes. With the mill 
Mr. Woodcock purchased about three thou- 
sand acres of land, and in connection with 
milling engaged in agricultural pursuits. 
He was one of the most prominent men of 
his township and was often chosen to posi- 
tions of honor and trust. He died on the 
homestead in Marion township, October 11, 
i860, and his wife passed away November 
15, 1870. They were earnest and consist- 
ent Christian people, holding a membership 
in the Methodist Episcopal church. 

Their family consisted of three sons and 
two daughters. Lucy, the eldest, married 
T. G. Anderson, a minister of the Method- 
ist Episcopal church, and she died in La- 
fayette township. Ogle county, leaving three 
daughters and one son. John B., our sub- 
ject, is the next in order of birth. Albert 
was a man of superior attainments, who 
graduated at Union College, New York. 
He then studied law, was admitted to the 
bar and engaged in practice until elected 
treasurer of Ogle county for a term of two 
years. Later he was elected county clerk 
and for si.xteen years held the latter office. 
In 1862 he enlisted in the Ninety-second 
Illinois Volunteer Infantry, was elected cap- 
tain of his company and was subsequently 
promoted to major, being mustered out as 
such at the close of the war. He then re- 
sumed the duties of county clerk, was after- 
wards elected county judge for a term of 
two years, and was appointed internal reve- 
nue collector of the district, holding that 
position until the consolidation of the dis- 
tricts in 1883. President Arthur appointed 
him consul to Sicily, and he held that re- 
sponsible post for four years, during which 



time he resided at Catania, at the base of 
Mt. Etna. On his return home he served 
as land commissioner for two years for the 
U. P. R. R. Co. He made two trips to 
California and finally settled in Los Angeles, 
where he died in 1894. He was three 
times married and by the first wife had two 
children. His last wife still survives him. 
Alanson, the next of the family, is engaged 
in farming near Fort Scott, Bourbon coun- 
ty, Kansas. Sarah, the widow of Rev. A. 
G. Smith, resides in Byron township. Ogle 
county. 

During his youth John B. Woodcock at- 
tended the academy at Governeur, St. Law- 
rence county. New York, and after coming 
to Illinois, at the age of eighteen years, he 
attended the Mt. Morris Academy. He 
arrived here in September, 1844, and for 
several years assisted his father in the work 
of the farm and mill. As deputy in his 
brother's office, he discharged the duties of 
county clerk when the latter was at the 
front during the Civil war, and continued to 
fill that position for five years, during which 
time he resided in Oregon. Later he used 
to assist in the office for five or six months 
out of the year. On his father's death he 
succeeded to the old homestead, and has 
since given the greater part of his time and 
attention to its management, with results 
which cannot fail to be satisfactory. He 
added to his farm until he had three hun- 
dred acres of valuable land, which he placed 
under a high state of cultivation, but has 
since given some of this property to his 
children. 

On the 15th of May, 1848, in Lafayette 
township, Mr. Woodcock was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Lucy Martin, who was born 
in Ontario, Canada, September 15, 1829, a 
daughter of Richard and Belinda Martin, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



243 



who settled in the southern part of the 
county in 1S38. Of the six children born 
to this union, four are now living, namely: 
Ella E. , Walter S. , Antoinette and John D. , 
all at home. They have received fair edu- 
cations, attending the local schools and 
those at Byron and Oregon. 

Mr. Woodcock cast his first vote for 
Zachary Taylor in 1848, in 1856 supported 
John C. Fremont, and has since been an 
uncompromising Republican. He has filled 
a number of local offices, but has never been 
a politician in the sense of office seeking. 
For many years he and his wife have been 
faithful members of the Methodist Episcopal 
church, to which his parents also belonged, 
and socially he is connected with Oregon 
lodge, A. & A. M. Those who know them 
best are numbered among their warmest 
friends, and no citizens of the community 
are more honored or highly respected. 



JACOB F. SWANK, one of the leading 
citizens of Forreston and of Ogle coun- 
ty, and who is engaged in the ice business 
in connection with farming, was born in 
Somerset county, Pennsylvania, February 
13, 1853, and is the son of Michael and 
Adeline (Baker) Swank, both of whom were 
natives of Pennsylvania, the Swanks being 
of German descent. In the spring of 1865 
Michael Swank came with his family to 
Illinois and located near Dixon, Lee county, 
where he remained three years, giving his 
attention to the cultivation of an eighty- 
acre farm which he rented, and also to his 
trade of a carpenter. In the spring of 1868 
he removed to Forreston township, Ogle 
county, where he purchased eighty acres of 
land and at once set about its improve- 



ment. The farm was located near the vil- 
lage of Harper, and on it he continued to 
reside until 1889, when he removed to 
Pennsylvania and lived a retired life. He, 
however, continued to work at his trade for 
many years, assisting in the erection of 
many of the buildings in P'orreston. 

Our subject was twelve yeirs old when 
he accompanied his parents to Illinois. 
His education, begun in the public schools 
of his native state, was completed in the 
schools of Lee and Ogle counties. While 
confined to the common schools he is yet a 
well-informed man. On removing to Ogle 
county he was fifteen years old and was re- 
quired to do his full share of the farm work, 
his father giving much of his time to work 
at his trade. In 1873 he commenced life 
for himself, renting his father's farm of 
eighty acres, together with sixty acres from 
other parties. 

On the I 2th of March, 1874, Mr. Swank 
was united in marriage with Miss Henrietta 
Foy, daughter of Ludwig Foy, an early set- 
tler of Brookville township, but who later 
moved to Forreston township. She was a 
native of Pennsylvania, but reared in Ogle 
county. Mrs. Swank took a special interest 
in organizing a camp of Royal Neighbors in 
Forreston and was elected oracle of the 
camp. By this union six children have 
been born. Cora M. is the wife of Charles 
W. Timmer, a farmer of Lincoln township; 
Adeline A., Louis, William M., Arthur F. 
and Clifford, all of whom are yet at home. 
Of the brothers and sisters of Mr. Swank, 
Melinda is the widow of Charles Brant, 
and lives near Shannon, Carroll county; 
Edward lives in Sedgwick, Kansas; Samuel 
lives in Pennsylvania. His mother died in 
Ogle county, but his father is yet living in 
Pennsylvania. 



244 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Of the brothers and sisters of Mrs. Swank, 
Edward is deceased; Louis lives in Lena, 
Illinois, where he is engaged in business; 
Henry reside in Freeport, where he is en- 
gaged in the grocery trade; Catherine is the 
wife of Simon Geating, a farmer of Lincoln 
township; Louisa, widow of George Law- 
ber, living in Freeport; Maggie, wife of E. 
H. Binkley, a real estate dealer of Chero- 
kee, Iowa. 

Mr. Swank is the owner of one hundred 
and eleven acres of excellent farm land 
which he cultivates, together with forty 
acres additional which he rents. In politics 
he is a Republican, and in political and 
local affairs he has always taken an active 
part. No enterprise for the public good but 
meets with his hearty co-operation. He 
was elected a director and secretary of the 
Harper Creamery Association in 1890 and 
served three years, or until it was sold to 
the Elgin syndicate. He was one of the 
directors of the Forreston Mutual Fire In- 
surance Company; was elected president of 
the Ogle County Farmers Institute m Feb- 
ruary, 1897, and re-elected in February, 
1898. He was appointed a delegate to the 
Farmers National Congress by Governor 
Tanner, which met in St. Paul, Minnesota, 
in September, 1897, and was re-appointed 
to the Farmers National Congress which 
met at Ft. Worth, Texas, and served with 
signal ability. He has contributed more or 
less to the public press, and was the corres- 
pondent of the Forreston Herald for six 
years. Fraternally, he is a member of the 
Modern Woodmen of America, and was 
elected venerable consul of the camp, and, 
religiously, he and his family attend the 
United Evangelical church, of which he is 
a trustee. He was also a member of the 
building committee and was secretary of 



the committee, and is the present secre- 
tary of the board of trustees. 

In educational affairs Mr. Swank has 
always taken great interest, serving on the 
school board and giving freely of his time 
to advance the best interests of the schools. 
For eight years he served as secretary of 
the board of directors, and is now one of 
the trustees. In 1886 he was elected com- 
missioner of highways and served three 
years. For ten years he has been a mem- 
ber of the county board of supervisors, and 
has been one of its most active and influen- 
tial members. He was a member of the 
board when the court house was built, and 
cast the deciding vote for its erection. He 
was a member of the bridge comniittee that 
built the bridge at Oregon, and also ap- 
pointed on the committee of the bridge 
across Rock river at Grand Detour. In the 
building of bridges in Maryland, Brookville 
and Grand Detour and other points he gave 
of his time as one of a committee charged 
with their erection. In whatever position 
he has been called on to fill he has given his 
best efforts and always in the interests of 
the people. Pie is a man in whom the peo- 
ple can trust, knowing that they will not be 
betrayed. 



JH. MILLER, who is now living in Mt. 
Morris, is a native of Mt. Morris town- 
ship, Ogle county, and was born December 
24, 1865. His father, Abraham Miller, 
was born Jime 21, 1831, in Franklin county, 
Pennsylvania, and was of German extraction. 
He grew to manhood in his native county 
and received a very limited connnon-school 
education, the knowledge afterwards ac- 
quired being received in the school of expe- 
rience. He was early taught to work, how- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



H5 



ever, and assisted his father in the work of 
the farm, finally taking the management 
thereof. He was married November 24, 1853, 
to Miss Barbara Newcomer, daughter of 
Daniel Newcomer, a native of Washington 
county, Maryland, but who removed to 
Franklin county, Pennsylvania, and there 
spent the remainder of his life. By this 
union there were born eleven children, as 
follows: Elizabeth, born September 24, 
1854; Mary A., May 3, 1S56; Barbara, De- 
cember I, 1858; Emanuel, May 26, 1861; 
David M., June 10, 1863; J. H., our subject; 
Edna M., June 5, 1867; Martha, June 11, 
1870; Abraham, March 29, 1874; EmmaS. , 
June 15, 1876; Silas E., March 21 1878. 
Of these Elizabeth, Barbara and Edna are 
deceased. 

Believing that he could better his condi- 
tion in life, Abraham Miller left his native 
state with his family and came to Ogle 
county, Illinois, in 1865, and on his arrival 
purchased ninety-five acres of excellent 
farming land and commenced its cultivation. 
He later purchased one hundred and five 
acres adjoining, giving him a valuable farm 
of two hundred acres. He subsequently 
deeded seven acres of the same to the rail- 
road company, on the completion of the 
road to Mt. Morris. On that farm he spent 
the remainder of his life, dying July 2, 1898. 
His widow is now residing with her daughter 
Emma, near Freeport, Illinois. She is of 
Swiss extraction. Politically Abraham Mil- 
ler was a Republican, and religiously was 
identified with the River Brethren. His 
wife is also connected with that church. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 
hood in his native county, receiving his pri- 
mary education in the common schools of 
Mount Morris township. He then entered 
Mount Morris College, which he attended for 



a time, but did not take the regular course. 
After leaving school he assisted his father 
on the farm for a time, or until he attained 
his majority, when he went to Nebraska antl 
remained there about fi\e months. He then 
returned home and again assisted his father 
in the cultivation of the home farm re- 
maining two years. 

Again seized with the western fever, he 
went to Kansas, where he remained for a few 
months, going from there to Omaha, Ne- 
braska, where he entered a business college 
and remained about two months, being com- 
pelled to leave on account of ill health. 
From Omaha he went to Vinton, Iowa, and 
there remained about five years, with the 
exception of a short period when he returned 
to Ogle county for his bride. While in \'in- 
ton he was employed in a grain elevator, 
and also in farming. 

Mr. Miller was united in marriage with 
Miss Myrtle Rine, December 24, 1890. She 
was born April 21, 1866, in Ogle county, 
and is the daughter of Benjamin and Melissa 
(Fish) Rine, and is the oldest in a family of 
four children born to her parents. To Mr. 
and Mrs. Miller two children have been 
born: Mable D. , born May 8, 1893, and 
Harold Guj-, January 29, 1898. 

In September, 1894, Mr. Miller returned 
to Ogle county, taking charge of his father's 
farm, the father being in poor health. He 
remained on the farm until the fall of 1898, 
when he moved to the village and purchased 
the livery stable of H. L. Smith, which he 
disposed of in 1899. 

Politically Mr. Miller is a stanch Re- 
publican, and has held various local offices, 
including that of town clerk. He is a mem- 
ber of the Modern Woodmen of America, 
and is the present venerable counsel of the 
camp at Mount Morris. 



246 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



JOHN H. HELM.— Sound judgment 
combined with fine ability in mechan- 
ical lines has enabled the subject of this 
biof^raphy, a prominent contractor and 
builder of Byron, Illinois, to attain a sub- 
stantial success in life. He was born in 
Chemung county. New York, July 31, 1834, 
and is a son of Phineas Helm, a native of 
Orange county, that state. The father en- 
listed in the army during the war of 18 12, 
was ordered out, but did not engage in act- 
ive service. He was married in Chemung 
county to Miss Betsy Smith, also a native of 
the Empire state. He was a cabinet- 
make by trade and carried on business for a 
number of years in Southport, New York, 
where he remained with his family and 
spent his last days. His wife survived him 
only a few months, dying at the same place. 
In their family were four sons and one 
daughter, namely: Floj'd, who married but 
is now deceased; Samuel, still a resident of 
Southport; Phineas, deceased; Mrs. Mary 
Ann Winkler, deceased; and John H., of 
this sketch. 

During his boyhood and youth John H. 
Helm pursued his studies in the schools of 
Southport, New York, and there learned 
the carpenter's and joiner's trade. In 1S61 
he came to Illinois and located in Kockford, 
where he worked at his trade for one year, 
and then came to I5yron, where he con- 
tinued to follow his chosen occupation. In re- 
sponse to the President's call for more men 
during the dark days of the Rebellion, he 
enlisted December 29, 1863, in Company 
B, Ninety-second Illinois Mounted Infantry, 
which was assigned to the Army of the 
Cumberland. With his regiment he was 
engaged in scouting, skirmishing and picket 
duty until July, 1864, when he was taken 
ill and sent to the hospital, first at Chatta- 



nooga and later at Nashville, Jeffersonville 
and the marine hospital at Chicago, being 
confined at these places for several months. 
He was finally discharged at Chicago, July 
21, 1S65, and returned to Byron to recu- 
perate. The following year he was able to 
resume work at his trade, and has since en- 
gaged in contracting and building most of 
the time. A great many of the public build- 
ings and private residences bear testimony 
to his handiwork and architectural skill. 

Just previous to coming to Illinois Mr. 
Helm was married in Ohio, April i, 1861, 
to Miss Sarah Babcock, who was born and 
reared in Steuben county. New York, a 
daughter of Elias Randall Babcock, of 
that state. She departed this life Novem- 
ber 15, 1889, and of the four children born 
to them three are now deceased. Grace 
died at the age of si.\ years, Albert at the 
age of one year, and William H., a phar- 
macist of Byron and Stillman Valley, died 
at home December 31, 1S94, at the age of 
twenty-three years. Mrs. Anna Schafer, 
the only one now living, is her father's 
housekeeper. She has one son, William 
Helm Schafer, aged three years. 

Mr. Helm's father was a Clay Whig, 
and our subject cast his first presidential 
ballot for Millard Fillmore in 1856, but has 
since supported the men and measures of 
the Republican party. In June, 18S9, he 
received the appointment of postmaster of 
Byron under President Harrison and most 
capably and satisfactorily discharged the 
duties of that office for four years, his 
daughter acting as deputy. He was made 
a Mason in Byron Lodge, F. & A. M., sev- 
eral years ago, and for four terms has served 
as master of the lodge, which he also repre- 
sented in the grand lodge of the state for 
the same length of time. He is also a 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



M? 



prominent member of the Grand Army post 
at Byron, of'which he is past commander, 
and by his fellow citizens he is held in high 
regard, receiving the respect and confidence 
of all with whom he has business or social 
relations. 



GEORGE R. RHODES, who is engaged 
in farming on section 6, Grand Detour 
township, and who for some years was one 
of the leading contractors and builders of 
Springfield, Illinois, was born July 27, 
1833, in Frederick county, Maryland, and 
is the son of Peter and Elizabeth (Foaster) 
Rhodes, both of whom were also natives of 
Frederick county, Maryland, the former 
born in 1794. The paternal grandfather, 
Jacob Rhodes, was a blacksmith by trade, 
and followed that occupation during his 
entire life. He never came to this state, 
but died in Maryland many years ago. 

In his youth Peter Rhodes learned the 
carpenter trade, an occupation he followed 
during his active life. In 1S63, he came to 
Illinois, and located in Rochester, Sanga- 
mon connty, where his death occurred in 
1S78. His wife died some years ago. They 
were the parents of ten children — Amanda, 
William H., John T., George R., Martha 
E., Ann O., Alice E., Katherine, James W. 
and Fannie. All are yet living save Ann O. 
In politics Peter Rhodes was a Jackson 
Democrat, a firm believer in the principles 
of the party as proclaimed by Jefferson and 
Jackson. He was a member of the Episco- 
pal church. 

The subject of this sketch was reared to 
manhood in his native state, and in the 
common schools received his education. At 
the age of eighteen he left school and worked 
with his father at the carpenter trade until 



1S56, when he came to Illinois and located 
at Springfield, where he continued to work 
at his trade. The firm of Rhodes Brothers, 
contractors and builders, was formed, and 
for many years did a prosperous business, 
erecting many of the best public and private 
buildings in the city, among them the 
splendid building of the Young Men's Chris- 
tian Association. He continued in contract- 
ing and building until 18S9, when he moved 
to his present place of residence, and en- 
gaged in agricultural pursuits. The farm 
consists of one hundred and si.xt}' acres, and 
is under excellent improvement. 

Mr. Rhodes has been twice married, his 
first union being with Miss Mary C. Lakin, 
and their marriage was celebrated February 
23, 1862. She died in 1869. His second 
marriage was with Mrs. Ella Miller, iicc 
Bovey, their union being formed September 
2, 1874. Mrs. I^hodes was born May 8, 
1852, in Ogle county, Illinois. She is the 
daughter of Samuel and Barbara (Funck) 
Bovey, both of whom are natives of Wash- 
ington count}', Marylanil, and who came to 
Ogle county in the spring of 1846, and lo- 
cated in Grand Detour township, where his 
death occurred in 1891. Miss Ella Bovey 
married Samuel S. Miller in i860, and his 
death took place December 25, 1869. At 
the time of his death he was managing the 
farm of his father-in-law. 

To Mr. and ^frs. Rhodes six children 
have been born. Clinton B., born June 
26, 1875, is now in the government mail 
service, running between Pontiac and Chi- 
cago. Charles L. , born January 20, 1S79, 
is attending Steinman Business College, 
Dixon, Illinois. Robert S., born July 24, 
1S82, died April 9, 1885. George T., born 
June 15, 1885, is attending the district 
school of Grand Detour township. Harry 



24^ 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



D., born January 14, 1889, is also in 
school. Ethel May, was born February 
7, 1897. 

In politics Mr. Rhodes is a Democrat, 
and for nine years served as a member of 
the board of supervisors of Sangamon 
county from Springfield. He made an effi- 
cient member, being a practical man, one 
who looked after the best interests of the 
public, and who did not serve just to please 
politicians. He also served for nine years 
as fire marshal of Springfield, a difficult and 
responsible position which he filled to the 
satisfaction of the people. Mrs. Rhodes is 
a member of the Christian church, with 
which she has been connected for a number 
of years, and in the teachings of which she 
has the utmost faith. She is now living in 
the home of her childhood where she has 
many friends. Although comparatively a 
newcomer, Mr. Rhodes is well known and 
universally esteemed. 



LOUIS J. OTTO, a thorough and skillful 
farmer and business man of more than 
ordinary ability, is a representative of the 
agricultural and stock raising interests of 
Ogle county, his home being on section 3, 
Forreston township, where he has a good 
farm of one hundred and sixty acres. A na- 
tive of the county, Mr. Otto was born in 
Maryland township. May 27, 1854, and is a 
son of Christian Otto, who was born about 
1803, in Lippe, Germany, where he was 
reared and married to Miss Mary Pepper- 
ling, a German lady. He followed farming 
in his native land. About 1848 he crossed 
the Atlantic and proceeded at once to Chi- 
cago, where he secured a team, and then 
drove across the country to Ogle county. 



where some friends from Germany were liv- 
ing in Maryland township. There he pur- 
chased a tract of eighty acres, and later 
bought a similar amount, making a good 
farm of one hundred and si.xty acres, which 
he commenced to improve and cultivate. 
He died there in 1862, and his wife passed 
away in February, 1861. In the family of 
this worthy couple were four sons and two 
daughters, all of whom married and became 
heads of families. They are Dora, wife of 
David Haselbrook, of Riley county, Kansas; 
Henry, a farmer of Stephenson county, 
who owns and operates a farm adjoining 
that of our subject; Louis J., of this review; 
Lizzie, wife of Henry Stuckenburg, who 
lives on the line betweenOgle and Stephen- 
son counties; August, who operates the old 
homestead; and Fred, who owns and oper- 
ates a valuable farm of six hundred and 
forty acres in Riley county, Kansas. 

Reared in Ogle county, Louis J. Otto 
remained with his mother and assisted in 
carrying on the old homestead. After the 
father's death two hundred and eighty acres 
were added to the place, making a valuable 
property of four hundred and forty acres. 
This they cleared from all indebtedness and 
transformed into a well cultivated and high- 
ly improved farm. Our subject acquired 
his education in the schools of Maryland 
township. There he was married, Decem- 
her 29, 1879, the lady of his choice being 
Miss AnnaFosha, who was born and reared 
in Stephenson county. Her father, John 
Fosha, was a native of Germany, was 
brought to America when a child and reared 
in Maryland whence he came to Illinois 
when a young man. He married Minnie 
Shineman and located on the Stephenson 
county line, where he now resides. Our 
subject and his wife have eight children, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



249 



namely: Nettie, William, Henry, Emma, 
Minnie, Mary, Roy and Walter, all at home. 
For four years after fiis marriage Mr. 
Otto lived on a part of the old homestead, 
of which he owned eighty acres, and on 
selling that place in the spring of 1884 he 
removed to his present farm, which he has 
greatly improved by making an addition to 
the house, building a large barn, and plac- 
ing the land under excellent cultivation. 
He is acknowledged to be one of the suc- 
cessful and progressive farmers of Forreston 
township, and in connection with general 
farming is interested in dairying and stock- 
raising, keeping a high grade of stock, both 
cattle and hogs. On national issues he 
supports the Democratic party, but at local 
election votes for the man whom he be- 
lieves best qualified to fill the office regard- 
less of party affiliations. He has most ac- 
ceptably served as school director for thir- 
teen years, and as clerk of the district for 
eight years. Socially he is a member of 
Florence Camp, M. W. A. He was reared 
in the Catholic church, but he and his wife 
now attend the German Reformed church, 
and in the social life of the community oc- 
cupy an enviable position, having the re- 
spect and esteem of all who know them. 



BURTON D. KRIDLER, of the well 
known firm of Strickler & Kridler, Polo, 
Illinois, was born in Luzerne county, Penn- 
sylvania, November 18, 1843, and is the son 
of John and Lydia (Ransom) Kridler, both 
of whom were also natives of Luzerne 
county, the former born August 15, 1809, 
and the latter December 15, 181 5. She is 
a daughter of Colonel George Palmer Ran- 
som, a native of Connecticut, born in 1761, 
but who removed with his father, Samuel 

27 



Ransom, to Wyoming Valley, Pennsylvania, 
then a portion of Connecticut, but now 
Luzerne county, Pennsylvania. On the 
26th of August, 1776, Samuel Ransom was 
commissioned captain of a company to be 
organized, and later with his company was 
ordered to join Washington's forces. W'ith 
him. Captain Ransom took his son George, 
a lad of less than sixteen years, who acted 
as orderly sergeant. Their first battle was 
at Millstone, January 20, 1777. They also 
participated in the battles of Brandywine, 
Germantown, Bound Brook and Mud Fort. 
Captain Ransom was killed in the Wyom- 
ing massacre, July 3, 1778. As it happened 
his son George was not present at the time, 
but arrived on the scene a few days later, 
and helped bury his father and other victims 
of the carnage. He was later taken prisoner 
and taken to Montreal, where he was held 
until the following June, when he made his 
escape on a raft in the St. Lawrence river. 
After many hardships he succeeded in reach- 
ing a settlement in Vermont, and later re- 
joined the army, remaining until the close 
of the war, when he was honorably dis- 
charged. 

John Kridler was reared in his native 
county, and received a very limited educa- 
tion, attending school for a short time when 
he was but seven years of age, and but one half 
day when he was eleven years of age. When 
nineteen, he commenced to learn the wagon- 
maker's trade, serving an apprenticeship of 
two years, for which he was to receive 
twenty-two dollars and fifty cents per year. 
Completing his trade, and having rested for 
a time and visiting his old home, he hired 
out to a carriage-maker at ten dollars per 
month, working for him four months. He 
then went into business for himself, and for 
a time had a hard struggle to make both 



250 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ends meet. He was persevering and indus- 
trious, however, and from his earnings 
paid off a mortgage on his father's place. 
On the 8th of September, 1835, he was 
united in marriage with Miss Lydia Ran- 
som, at which time his entire cash cap- 
ital consisted of eight dollars. Soon aft- 
er his marriage he moved to Susque- 
hanna, Penns^'lvania, where he opened up 
a small farm. After spending eighteen 
years of his married life trying to make 
headway in his native state, he concluded 
to try the prairies of Illinois. Accordingly, 
in 1853, he moved to Carroll county and 
purchased a farm of three hundred and 
twenty acres, about twelve miles west of 
Polo. From the beginning he was success- 
ful, and in addition to his home farm, in 
due time he became the owner of two other 
farms in Carroll county, which yielded him 
a generous return for his investment. After 
residing on his farm for thirty-one years, he 
moved to Polo, and there made his home 
during the remainder of his life. He died 
June 30, 1897. His wife is yet living in 
Polo. They were the parents of nine chil- 
dren. George H. was a member of the 
Fifteenth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and 
was wounded at the battle of Shiloh. He 
died while on his way home. Sabina is the 
wife of Alexander Windle, and they are liv- 
ing in Iowa Park, Te.xas; B. D. is the sub- 
ject of this sketch; W. H. is living in Omaha, 
Nebraska; S. R. is a physician of Red Oak, 
Iowa; Emma L. married Orris Mosher, and 
they reside in Walnut, Iowa; Marian H. is 
the wife of Dr. D. F. Hallett, and they 
reside in Red Oak, Iowa. Two died in 
childhood. 

The subject of this sketch was ten years 
old when he accompanied his parents to 
Carroll county, Illinois. In the public 



schools of that county he received his prim- 
ary education, which was supplemented by 
an attendance at Mt. Carroll Seminary. At 
seventeen, he quit school and commenced 
clerking in the general store of Pierce & 
Barber, Polo, at the munificent salary of 
seventy-tive dollars per year. He remained 
with that firm for three years, but with an 
increase of salary, and then entered the 
Commercial College, at Poughkeepsie, New 
York, one of the best institutions of the 
kind in the country. After remaining there 
one year he removed to Polo and went into 
the livery business where Griffin's stables 
now stand. He remained in that business 
for about two years and then traded his 
livery stable for a grocery store. After be- 
ing in the grocery business for about two 
years, he met with serious reverses which 
forced him to the wall, leaving him several 
hundred dollars in debt. He is happy to 
say, however, that in due time he paid out 
one hundred cents on the dollar. After 
meeting with his loss, he went on the road 
for a time as traveling salesman for a whole- 
sale notion house, and was also engaged in 
the patent right business. In 1882 he 
again went into the mercantile business, 
purchasing an interest in the furniture store 
of William Strickler, to which they added 
dry goods, and later other departments. 

On the 26th of December, 1S67, Mr. 
Kridler was united in marriage with Miss 
Eliza Baker, daughter of Daniel and Mary 
C. (North) Baker, both of whom were na- 
tives of Michigan, as was their daughter. 
He is jet li\ing, and makes his home with 
our subject. His wife died in March, 1888. 
By this union there was one son born, F. 
B., who is engaged in the grocery and no- 
tion trade, in which line he has been for 
the last eight years. He is a graduate of 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



251 



the Polo high school, and is a good business 



In politics, Mr. Kridler is a Republican, 
but is not a partisan. He prefers to give 
his time and attention to his business inter- 
ests rather than to politics. He has been 
in business with Mr. Strickler for about 
seventeen years, their store now being more 
than doable its original size, covering a 
space of thirteen thousand five hundred 
square feet. They handle almost everything 
that is sold in the large department stores, 
and their trade is constantly increasing. 
They are up-to-date businessmen, and have 
the confidence of the people. 



MRS. MARY |. JOINER, whose farm is 
in Eagle Point township, about three 
and a half miles west of Polo, is a worthy 
representative of one of the prominent and 
influential pioneer families of Ogle county, 
dating her residence here from November, 
1S37. She was born in Delaware county. 
New York, October 29, 1831, and is a 
daughter of Robert Smith, a native of 
Scotland, who was born in 1796, and grew 
to manhood there. He was a weaver by 
trade, but after his emigration to the United 
States, in 1827, he located in Delaware 
county. New York, and turned his attention 
to agricultural pursuits. There he was 
united in marriage with Miss Deborah 
Broadwell, a native of the Empire state and 
a daughter of Ezra Broadwell, who fonght 
for American independence as a soldier of 
the Revolutionary war and was a pioneer 
settler of Delaware county. In 1837 Mr. 
Smith brought his family to the west and 
settled in Eagle Point township, Ogle coun- 
ty, when the whole region round about was 
almost an unbroken wilderness; wolves and 



deer were often seen and the Indians had 
not all left for their new home beyond the 
Mississippi. A wonderful transformation 
has since taken place in the county and in 
these changes the Smith family bore an 
active and prominent part. The father 
entered one hundred and sixty acres of land 
in Eagle Point township, of which ten acres 
had been broken, as he purchased the claim 
from another gentleman, and he bought the 
land from the government when it came 
into market. He first built a log house, 
in which the family li\ed for a number of 
years while he was opening up and develop- 
ing his farm, but it was later replaced by a 
good frame residence, and good barns and 
other out-buildings were also erected. He 
spent his last years in retirement in Polo, 
and there passed away November 28, 1881, 
at the ripe old age of eighty-five years. He 
was one of the valued and honored citizens 
of his community, having the respect and 
confidence of all who knew him. He was 
twice married, Mrs. Joiner's mother, who 
died in 1843, being the first wife. To them 
were born three children, the son being 
Henry Smith, who. in August, 1862, en- 
listed in the Ninety-second Illinois Infantry 
for service in the Civil war and died in the 
hospital at Nashville, Tennessee, February 
13, 1863. 

Mrs. Joiner was reared in Ogle county, 
and on the ist of February, '-1855, gave her 
hand in marriage to William Joiner, a native 
of Vermont, who was born October 23, 
1830, and came west with his parents, Alvin 
and Anna Joiner, in June, 1837. He grew 
to manhood on his father's farm in Pine 
Creek township, Ogle county, and was edu- 
cated in the common schools. He and his 
bride began their domestic life upon the old 
homestead in that township, which he 



o r o 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



owned and occupied for a number of years. 
It comprised about one hundred and forty 
acres, to which he added by subsequent 
purchase until he had a very valuable farm 
under a high state of cultivation and well 
improved. He was a successful farmer and 
a very prominent and influential citizen of 
the community in which he lived. On 
leaving his farm in Pine Creek township he 
removed to the old Smith homestead in 
Eagle Point township, where his death 
occurred May i8, 1864. He filled several 
official positions of honor and trust, includ- 
ing those of tax collector and assessor, and 
was a leading and active member of the 
Baptist church of Pine Creek. His remains 
were interred in the Oak Ridge cemetery, 
and a marble slab marks his resting place. 
He left two children. Henry, the older, is 
a farmer of Eagle Point township; he is 
married and has six children — Beulah, 
Pearl, Irma, Vera, Edna and Etta Marie. 
Paulina is the wife of William Made, of the 
same township, and they have four chil- 
dren — Henry \V., Mary A., Nellie E. and 
Robert S., all attending the home school. 
The mother of these children died March 
22, 1877. By a second marriage Mrs. 
Joiner had one daughter. Bertha, who mar- 
ried Wilson Bellows, of Buffalo township, 
and is the mother of one child, Robert. 
Mrs. Joiner is a most estimable lady, loved 
and respected by all who know her for her 
many excellencies of character, and this 
brief sketch of her life will be read with 
interest by her many friends throughout the 
county. 



McFARLEN J. WEST, who is now liv- 
ing a retired life on his farm within 
the corporate limits of the village of Leaf 



River, is one of the most prosperous and 
successful business men of Ogle county, 
with whose interests he has been identified 
since November, 1856. He was born in 
Monroe county. New York, January 24, 
1835, and is a son of Nathaniel R. West, a 
native of Massachusetts, born in 1787. 
The family is of English origin and was 
founded in the old Bay state at an early 
day in colonial history, and the paternal 
grandfather of our subject was a soldier of 
the Revolutionar}' war. Nathaniel R. West 
was reared in his native state, and when a 
young man removed to Monroe county. 
New York, where he subsequently married 
Miss Esther Barker, a native of Rensselaer 
county, that state, and a daughter of Rich- 
ard Barker, of Monroe county, of Scotch 
ancestry. Mr. West spent the remainder 
of his life as a farmer there, dying in 1S37 
when our subject was only two years old. 
The mother carefully reared her children to 
habits of thrift and industry and finally 
came west with her sons to Illinois, locating 
at Leaf River, where she died in 1873, at 
the age of sixty-eight years. 

McFarlen J. West is the youngest of 
the four children, two sons and two daugh- 
ters, who reached years of maturity. .Amasa 
B. came to Illinois in 1844 and entered a 
tract of land in Ogle county, a part oi which 
now lies within the limits of the village of 
Leaf River. He located thereon in 1856, 
inaking it his home for a number of years, 
but finally sold and removed to Wisconsin 
and spent his last days near Sparta, dying 
there in 1884. Alma B. married John G. 
Randall and settled in New York, but later 
removed to Wisconsin, where her death 
also occurred. Jane A. married Henry 
Downer and is now deceased. 

The subject of this review grew to man- 




M. J. WEST. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RI-XORD. 



255 



hood in Monroe county, New York, and 
was educated in the common schools and 
in Lima Seminary. It was in 1854 that he 
came west and purchased two hundred 
acres of land adjoining his brother's place in 
Ogle county. At the end of two months, 
however, he returned to his eastern home 
and did not locate permanently here until 
1856, when he began the work of cultivation 
and improvement. His brother had already 
made some improvements upon his place, 
including the erection of a residence, and 
there they all lived together for several 
years, while our subject developed his own 
place. Here he was married May 7, 1863, 
to Miss Margaret E. Waggoner, a native of 
Pennsylvania and a daughter of Henry R. 
Waggoner, who removed here from the 
Reystone state in 1S48. She was educated 
at Mt. Morris, and prior to her marriage 
was a successful teacher. Her brother. 
Prof. Joseph Waggoner, was the first prin- 
cipal of the Mt. Morris school. Mr. and 
Mrs. West began their domestic life upon 
his farm and soon afterward commenced 
to build their present residence, which is 
a large, neat and substantial dwelling, sur- 
rounded by good barns and outbuildings. To 
his original purchase he added until he had 
three hundred acres, through which the rail- 
road passes, and he has since laid off and 
platted a portion of the present town. He 
has sold several acres of his farm and still 
owns two hundred and twenty-five acres. 
He has ever taken a deep and commendable 
interest in the growth and development of 
the village, has materially aided in its ad- 
vancement and prosperity, and was one of 
the organizers of the Leaf River Bank, of 
which he is an original stockholder and di- 
rector. He has given a hearty support to 
all enterprises that tend to the improve- 



ment of the place and to those interests 
which are calculated to advance the moral, 
intellectual or social welfare of the com- 
munity. 

The children born to Mr. and Mrs. West 
are as follows: Henry S. is married and is 
the present cashier of the Leaf River Bank; 
Elsie K. is a cultureif and refined young 
lady, who graduated at Cornell Unis'ersity, 
in Iowa, and was a teacher in that institu- 
tion for two years, but resigned to accept 
her present position as general secretary 
of the Young Woman's Christian As- 
sociation with head<]uarters at Detroit, 
Michigan. She makes her home with her 
parents. Wilbur M. is a business man 
of Duluth, Minnesota. George A. died in 
September, 1S97, at the age of twenty-three 
years. They also ha\'e an adopted son, 
Fred U. West, son of Mr. West's sister. 
He is a well-educated young man and is 
now ser\'ing as postal clerk or mail agent. 

Mr. \\'est cast his first presidential ballot 
for Millard Fillmore, later was identified 
with the Republican part}' for some years, 
but being a strong temperance man and be- 
lieving that to be the great question before 
the people, he jcjined the Prohibition party, 
with which he now affiliates. .\lth(3Ugh he 
has never sought office, he was elected a 
member of the village board and served as 
trustee for some years. He and his wife 
were among the original members of the 
Methodist Episcopal church of Leaf River, 
and he is now the oldest member of the 
class at that place. Earnest and sincere 
Christian people, they are active and zealous 
workers in the church, and for many years 
Mr. West has served as one of its officers. 
Wherever known they are held in high re- 
gard and their frieucfs throuiihout Oirle 
county are numerous. 



356 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



JOHN LIGHT, who is now living retired 
in Leaf River, has been identified with 
this section of the state for more than sixty- 
one years, and has contribnted to its mate- 
rial progress and prosperity to an extent 
equalled by but few of his contemporaries. 
He early had the sagacity and prescience to 
discern the eminence which the future had 
in store for this great and growing country, 
and acting in accordance with the dictates 
of his faith and judgment he reaped, in the 
fullness of time, the generous benefits which 
are the just recompense of indomitable in- 
dustry, spotless integrity and marvelous en- 
terprise. 

Mr. Light was born July 17, 1S12, in 
Dauphin county, Pennsylvania, m that por- 
tion which now forms a part of Lebanon 
county. His ancestors were originally from 
German}', but for many generations the 
family made their home in Pennsylvania, it 
being founded in Lancaster county by John 
Peter Light in 1739, and for several years 
its representatives were among the most 
substantial men of that region. Martin 
Light, father of our subject, was born there, 
and married Miss Barbara Overalls, also a 
native of Lancaster county and a daughter 
of Christian Overalls. She had a paternal 
uncle who was a soldier of the Revolution- 
ary war. Martin Light followed farming in 
his native county, but when it was divided 
his farm lay in Lebanon county. There he 
continued to live until called from this life. 

John Light had limited advantages in 
early life, and is almost wholly self-edu- 
cated. Leaving home in 1836, he went to 
Ohio, where he spent one winter, and in 
1837 came to Ogle county, Illinois, locating 
in Leaf River township, where he assisted 
the family with whom he came west in 
building a house and in breaking prairie. 



He returned to Pennsylvania in the fall of 
that year, but in the spring of 1838 he again 
came to Ogle county and bought a claim, 
comprising three-quarters of a section, for 
which he paid three hundred dollars. This 
he later entered from the government and 
built thereon a log house. As it was cov- 
ered with timber, he opened up a prairie 
farm first and then began to clear and culti- 
vate his timber land. 

In 1845, Mr. Light was united in 
marriage with Miss Catherine Scugar, who 
was born in Pennsylvania, in 1824. Her 
father, Michael Scugar died when she was 
a child and her mother subsequently married 
again. With the family she come to Illi- 
nois in 1843. J^Ir. and Mrs. Light began 
housekeeping in true pioneer style in a 
little log cabin with wooden benches for 
chairs, a homemade bedstead and other rude 
furniture then so common in the homes 
on the frontier. Two or three years later 
this home was replaced by a good frame 
residence, and subsequently a regular Penn- 
sylvania barn with a basement was also 
built. In connection with farming Mr. 
Light engaged in merchandising for some 
years, starting in business at Lightville with 
a small stock of groceries, but as he pros- 
pered in the undertaking he increased his 
stock from time to time until he had a good 
general store, which he conducted for ten 
years. When he began business he hauled 
his goods from Chicago, the trip occupying 
from seven to twelve days. After operating 
his first farm for twenty-one years, he rented 
it and moved to Stephenson county, where 
he bought three hundred and twenty acres, 
and later a similar amount, it being divided 
into four farms of a quarter section each. 
In that county he made his home for twenty 
years, but since 1885 has lived retired in the 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



25; 



village of Leaf River. Besides the property 
already mentioned he owned more land in 
Ogle county, and at one time was the largest 
land owner and tax-payer in Stephenson 
county, and owns a substantial home in 
Leaf River. On coming to the state he had 
no means, and like the immortal Lincoln, 
he made rails for several years, splitting 
some thirty thousand of them. His success 
is attributed to his own industry, economy 
and sound judgment, as well as to his in- 
tegrity and fair dealing. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Light were born se\en 
children, four sons and three daughters, to 
each of whom he gave a farm of one hun- 
dred and sixty acres. In order of birth they 
are as follows. Tena, wife of Henry Schra- 
der, of Leaf River; Martin, who is married 
and engaged in farming in Ogle county; 
John, Jr., a farmer of Stephenson county, 
who died, leaving a wife and two children; 
Catherine, wife of Dr. John Pcnningburg, a 
physician of Herman; Henry, who is mar- 
ried and is engaged in the practice of veter- 
inary surgery in I^ockford; Mary, wife of 
Riley Motter, a farmer of Stephenson count}-; 
Joseph, a farmer of Stephenson county, who 
was accidentally killed in October, 1898, 
and left a wife and eight children. The 
parents are consistent members of the 
United Brethren church and have the 
respect and esteem of all who know them 
on account of their sterling worth and ex- 
emplary lives. 



CW. JOHNSON, residing in Grand De- 
tour, is a native of West Virginia, born in 
Jefferson county, May 27, 1845, and is the 
son of Aaron H. and Marietta (Boone) John- 
son, the former a native of Virginia, born 
January 10, 1821, and the latter of Boons- 



borough, Maryland, born July 17, 1822. 
Aaron Johnson was the grandson of Thomas 
Johnson, a Revolutionary soldier who fought 
throughout the entire war. Marietta Boone 
was a daughter of Daniel Boone, who was 
one of the family owning the site of the 
present city of Boonsborough, Mar}land, 
and who was a grandnephew of the re- 
nowned Daniel Boone, of Kentucky. In 
early life Aaron Johnson followed his trade 
of shoemaker, continuing in that occupation 
as long as he remained in his native state. 
In October, i S46, he came with his family 
to Ogle count}-, coming through the entire 
distance by wagon. On his arrival he took 
up a tract of two hundred and fifty acres in 
Pine Creek township, where he continued to 
remain and farm until his death June 22, 
1867. His wife is yet living and makes her 
home with her children. They were the 
parents of eight children, six of whom grew 
to maturity: Charles W., the subject of 
this sketch; J. C, living in Fulton county. 
New York; H. N., living in Dixon, Illinois; 
Mary V., who died at the age of thirty-one 
years; Susan K. , wife of Frank H. Wilber, 
living near Polo; and A. M., living east of 
Polo on the home farm. In politics Aaron 
Johnson was originally aii old line \\'hig, 
but became a Republican on the organiza- 
tion of that party. He was an earnest 
member of the Christian church, of which 
body his wife is also a member. 

The subject of this sketch came to Ogle 
county when but one year old, and in the 
public schools of Pine Creek township he 
received his primary education. This was 
supplemented by an attendance at Rock 
River Seminary, at Mt. Morris. After at- 
tending one term, his patriotism got the 
better of him and he enlisted April 24, 1S64, 
in Company I, One Hundred and Fortieth 



2 58 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He 
went first to Camp Butler, near Springfield, 
Illinois, and from there he went with his 
regiment to Memphis, Tennessee, where 
they were assigned to guard the Memphis & 
Charleston railroad. In the discharge of 
this duty they had a number of skirmishes 
with guerrillas, but were in no regular battle. 
At the close of his term of service he was mus- 
tered out October 29, 1864, and has yet in 
his possession the card of thanks issued and 
signed by Abraham Lincoln. 

On his return home, Mr. Johnson again 
entered the seminary at Mt. Morris and re- 
mained one term. After leaving school, 
he worked for his father two years, then 
taught school in winter and farmed in sum- 
mer for the next seven years. On the 29th 
of December, 1868, he was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Saville M. Bovey, who was 
born March 5, 1850, in Grand Detour town- 
ship, and daughter of Samuel and Barbara 
(Funk) Bovey, both of whom were natives 
of Washington county, Maryland, the form- 
er born November 5, 1814, and the latter 
December 8, 18 16. Samuel Bovey was a 
farmer, and in 1 84G came to Ogle county 
and located in Grand Detour township, 
where he resided until his death in January, 
I 89 1. His wife died August 20, 1S8S. They 
were the parents of ten children, five of 
whom grew to maturity. Lydia married J. 
H. l^rubaker, and they live in Anthonj', 
Kansas. Saville M. is the wife of our sub- 
ject. Ella B. is the wife of George R. 
Rhodes, and they are livingonthe old home 
farm in Grand Detour township. Katie is 
the wife of H. N. Johnson, and they reside 
in Dixon, Illinois. Baibara is the wife of 
D. M. Fahrney, and they also live in Dixon. 
To Mr. and Mrs. Johnson six children were 
born. Clarence died in infancy. Bertiia 



O. , born November 8, 1870, married Jer- 
ome F. Cox, and they live on our subject's 
farm in Grand Detour township. Nellie J., 
born January 21, 1873, married Amos L. 
Palmer, and they reside in the village of 
Grand Detour. Francis M., born January 
22, 1S75, is living with his father. E.May, 
born December 21, 1876, is li\ing with her 
parents. Bessie L., born March 19, 1886, 
is also living at home. 

In the spring of 1869 Mr. Johnson com- 
menced farming for himself, renting the farm 
of his father-in-law in Grand Detour town- 
ship, and in 1874 purchased one hundred 
and sixty acres from the heirs of Peter New- 
comer. To his original purchase, as his 
means increased, he made additions, until 
he has now four hundred and seventy-nine 
acres of well improved and valuable land. 
In addition to the raising of grain, he has 
made a specialty of raising Poland China 
hogs, having usually on his place from one 
hundred to one hundred and fifty head. He 
has also had on his farm a number of Mor- 
gan and Norman horses, and Durham short- 
horn cattle. Conservative in his work, he 
has been quite successful in what he has 
undertaken, and is numbered among the 
prosperous farmers of the county. 

In politics Mr. Johnson is a Republican. 
He has been collector one year; highway 
commissioner eight years; school trustee eight 
years; school director two terms; justice of 
the peace sixteen years; and is now serving 
his seventh year as supervisor of his town- 
ship. While on the board he has been 
chairman of the judiciar)', educational, fees 
and salaries, and poor farm committees, 
and a member of the claim committee. He 
has represented his party twice in state con- 
ventions at Springfield, and in his party 
work he has always endeavored to keep the 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



259 



rights of the people in view. He is a mem- 
ber of the Christian church, as is also his 
wife and family, and in the work of the 
church takes a deep interest. Fraternally 
he is a member of the Grand Army of the 
Republic, holding membership with Post 
No. 1 16, at Oregon. 



DANIEL CASE is a man whose genial 
temperment, sound judgment and well- 
proved integrity have brought to him the 
esteem and friendship of a host of acquaint- 
ances far and near. On coming to the coun- 
ty in March, 1874, he located on section 8, 
Marion township, and for some time his at- 
tention was entirely occupied by agricult- 
ural pursuits, but since 18S8 he has made 
his home in Stillman Valley, and in connec- 
tion with his farming interests he has since 
dealt in all kinds of farm machinery. 

Mr. Case is a native of New Jersey, born 
in Hunterdon county, June 22, 1842, and is 
a son of Hon. John H. Case, whose birth 
occurred in the same county in 1S07. His 
grandfather, Daniel Case, commanded a 
company and served with distinction in the 
war of 18 12. From wild land he developed 
the farm in Hunterdon county on which our 
subject and his father were both born. On 
attaining to man's estate the latter married 
Miss Elizabeth Bennett, a native of War- 
ren county. New Jersey, and a daughter of 
Isaac Bennett, who was an early settler of 
Warren county, but spent his last days in 
Hunterdon county. Throughout life John 
H. Case followed farming on the old home- 
stead and was one of the most prominent 
and intfuential men of his county. He was 
called upon to fill many local positions of 
honor and trust and for two or more terms 
represented his district in the state legisla- 



ture with credit to himself and to the entire 
satisfaction of his constituents. He died 
in 1869, at the age of si.\ty-two years, and 
his wife who sur\'ived him for some time, 
passed away in 1893, at the age of eighty- 
three. They were the parents of eight 
children, four sons and four daughters, 
namely: Sarah, wife of Jonas Robins, of 
Hunterdon county, New Jersey; Phoebe, de- 
ceased wife, of Joseph Hart; Isaac B., who 
owns and operates the old homestead; Cath- 
erine died at the age of twenty-eight years; 
Daniel, of this sketch; Dr. Nathan, who was 
engaged in the practice of medicine in Rig- 
glesville. New Jersey, for several years, 
but is now deceased; Howard, a commis- 
sion merchant of New York city; Elizabeth, 
wife of Anderson Conover, of Foreston, 
Ohio. 

In the county of his nativity, Daniel 
Case grew to manhood and had the advan- 
tages of a good education, completing his 
studies at the Raraton high school. On 
leaving the school room he assisted his fa- 
ther in the labors of the home farm for 
some years, and thus obtained a good prac- 
tical knowledge of the occupation which he 
has made his life work. In Hunterdon 
county, September 23, 1S73, he led to the 
marriage altar Miss Mary M. Smith, a na- 
tive of the county, and a daughter of Rob- 
ert Smith, one of the substantial farmers of 
that locality. Three children have been 
born of this union: Robert G., Elizabeth 
and Emma, all of whom have been well 
educated and are now at home. 

In the spring following his marriage, 
Mr. Case came to Ogle county, Illinois, and 
in Marion township purchased one hundred 
and sixty acres, to which he subsequently 
added an adjoining one hundred and twenty 
acres, making a line farm of two hundred 



26o 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and eighty acres, which he placed under a 
high state of cultivation and improved until 
it is one of the most desirable places of the 
community. In connection with general 
farming he also engaged in breeding and 
raising a good grade of stock — horses, cat- 
tle and hogs. In 1888 he rented the farm 
and removed to Stillman Valley, where, as 
previously stated, he is now doing a suc- 
cessful business as a dealer in farm machin- 
ery, mowers, binders, etc. 

Mr. Case has been called upon to mourn 
the loss of his estimable wife, who passed 
away May i, 1898, and was laid to rest in 
Stillman Valley cemetery. She was a faith- 
ful member of the Congregational church, 
to which he and his family also belong. 
Socially he affiliates with the Modern Wood- 
men of America and the Knights of Pythias, 
and has held office in both orders. Politic- 
ally his support has always been given the 
Democracy since casting his first vote for 
General George B. McClellan in 1S64. In 
Marion township he served on the school 
board for a number of years, and since com- 
ing to Stillman Valley has occupied a simi- 
lar position. He has identified himself with 
every enterprise for the public good and is 
justly numbered among the valued and use- 
ful citizens of the community. 



WH. CUNNINGHAM, one of the lead- 
ing merchants of Polo, and vice- 
president of the Exchange Bank of the same 
city, was born in Washington county, Mary- 
land, May 20, 1 84 1, and is the son of Joseph 
and Elizabeth (Sprickler) Cunningham, both 
of whom were natives of Washington coun- 
ty, Maryland, the former born in 1808, and 
the latter in 1822. Joseph Cunningham 
was the son of David Cunningham, also a 



native of Maryland, and who followed the 
occupation of a cooper during his entire life. 
In his family were six sons and two daugh- 
ters. In the common schools of his native 
state Joseph Cunningham obtained his edu- 
cation, and at the age of twenty-two years 
went into the mercantile business, opening 
up a general store at Cunningham's Cross 
Roads, now Cearfoss, Maryland. He con- 
tinued in that business for nearly forty 
years, retiring from the same about fifteen 
3-ears before his death, which occurred De- 
cember 15, 1875. He was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Elizabeth Sprickler, by 
whom he had eleven children, four only 
now living — W. H., Andrew, Miley and 
Mary. With the exception of two, all died 
young. Those two were John, who died at 
the age of sixty \ears, and George, when 
fifty-six years old. The mother is yet liv- 
ing in Washington county, Maryland. In 
politics Joseph Cunningham was an old-line 
W^hig until the organization of the Repub- 
lican party, when he gave adhesion to that 
organization, the principles of which he ad- 
vocated during the remainder of his life. 
For some years he served as justice of the 
peace, and also school director a number of 
years. 

The common schools of his native county 
afforded the only opportunity for our sub- 
ject to obtain an education, but he made 
the best use of his opportunities until he was 
sixteen years old, when he quit the school 
room that he might begin in earnest the bat- 
tle of life. One year later, in 1858, became 
to Ogle county, and for two years worked 
on a farm owned by Henry Newcomer. At 
the expiration of that time he went to Polo 
and commenced clerking in the grocery 
store of H. N. Murray, the same store and 
in the same line of business in which he 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



261 



himself is now engaged. For five and a 
half years he continued in Mr. Murray's em- 
ploy, and then, in partnership with John 
Bingaman, purchased the stock of the Mur- 
ray estate and continued the business. 
This partnership lasted for nineteen and a 
half years, when Mr. Bingaman withdrew, 
since which time he has continued alone. 

On the 15th of June, 18G8, Mr. Cun- 
ningham was united in marriage with Miss 
Deliah Sanford, who was born in Buffalo 
township, and daughter of Harrison and 
Bridget (Deyo) Sanford, the former born in 
Middletown, Delaware county. New York, 
February 16, 1S12, and who died July i, 
1866, and the latter born in the same coun- 
ty and state, March 14, 1814, and who died 
October 19, 1869. They were married in 
1835. Harrison Sanford came west in 1835 
in company of a party of New York people, 
and took up some land in Buffalo township, 
and followed farming for a number of years. 
He then went to Oldtown and established a 
hotel there, which he ran until 1854, when 
he came to Polo and built a hotel where 
the Exchange National Bank now stands, 
and called it the Sanford House. He occu- 
pied that house for some years. In 1S70 
the building was torn down, and the present 
building erected by the stockholders of the 
Exchange National Bank, of which Mr. Cun- 
ningham is \ice-president. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Cunningham four chil- 
dren ha\e been born: Cora is living at home 
with her parents. F. S. is assisting his fa- 
ther in the store. Fannie married Frank 
Brown, and they have two children. They 
reside in Sycamore, where he is engaged in 
the grocery and drug business. Carrie died 
May 7, 1 89 1, at the age of seventeen years. 

In addition to his mercantile business, 
Mr. Cunningham has been connected with 



the Exchange National Bank since it was or- 
ganized, April 15, 1871, being one of its 
charter members. Since 1885 he has filled 
the office of \ice-president of the same. He 
is a good business man, conservatix'e in all 
things, and has the entire confidence of the 
business community. In politics he is a 
Republican, but not a partisan. Fraternally 
he is a Mason, holding membership with 
blue lodge at Polo, and the commandery at 
Dixon. 



GEORGE SMITH, who is operating a 
farm of three hundred and twenty acres 
on section 32, Woosung township, is a good 
representative of the young, enterprising 
farmers of Ogle county. He was born in 
Rockbury, Washington county, Maryland, 
April 21, iSGi, and is the son of John V. 
and Sarah (Smith) Smith, both of whom 
were natives of Washington count}', Mary- 
land. They were the parents of four chil- 
dren: George, our subject; Fannie E., wife 
of Fred Seelemur, a farmer of Jones county, 
Iowa; Jennie G., wife of Frank H. Wilson, 
of Buffalo township; Ida E., wife of James 
Hawkins, of Coleta, Whiteside county, Illi- 
nois; and Anna D., wife of Elmer R. Oster- 
houdt, residing on the home place, and as- 
sisting in carrying on the farm. The great- 
grandfather, John Smith, was a native of 
Maryland. 

The paternal grandfather, Solomon 
Smith, was a native of Frederick county, 
Maryland, a farmer by occupation, who 
spent his entire life in his native state. He 
married Elizabeth Hutzel, a native of 
Washington county, Maryland, and their 
children were John V., the father of our 
subject; Susan L.; Jacob L., a farmer of 
Buffalo township; and Adam W., a real es- 



263 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



state dealer of Lincoln, Nebraska. The 
great-grandfather on the mother's side was 
John Hutzel, also a native of Maryland. 

Sarah E. Smith, the mother of our sub- 
ject, is the daughter of John and Mary 
Smith, both natives of Maryland. John 
Smith came to Illinois at the same time as 
did the father of our subject. He located 
on the farm which was later purchased by 
his son-in-law, and which is now the home 
of our subject 

John V. Smith was reared in his native 
state, and he there married. In his native 
state he worked for wages, and he there re- 
mained until 1865, when he came to Ogle 
county, Illinois, and the first year after his 
arrival, rented and cultivated a farm in 
Woosung township. He was then one year 
on a rented farm in Pine Creek township, 
after which he removed to the farm now 
owned by his heirs. He made a humble 
start in Ogle county, having not to exceed 
one hundred dollars on his arrival here, but 
he was industrious and attentive to business. 
and left at his death a fine estate. In poli- 
tics he was a Republican, but was never an 
office seeker or a politician in the common 
acceptation of the term. He believed it to 
be the duty of every voter to cast his ballot 
intelligently and as his best judgment dic- 
tated. In religion he was a Lutheran. He 
died at his home in Woosung township, 
March 5, 1888, at the age of forty-nine 
years and ten months. He was a good man 
and had no fears of death. His widow is 
yet living, and is making her home with her 
husband's brother, Jacob L. Smith, of Buf- 
falo township. 

The subject of this sketch was but four 
yea:rs old when he came with his parents to 
Ogle county. He grew to manhood on the 
home farm, and was educated in the com- 



mon schools and in the high school at Polo. 
On attaining his majority, he rented the 
home farm for one year, and the next 
worked the place in company with his 
father. He was married December 21, 
1887, to Miss Harriet E. \\'ilson, who was 
born in Buffalo township, and a daughter of 
Jesse and Ann E. (Hyatt) Wilson, the 
former a native of Baltimore, Maryland, 
and the latter of Washington county, same 
state. Mr. Wilson came to Ogle county 
soon after his marriage and located in 
Buffalo township, where he still resides. 
Mrs. Smith was one of their five children, 
the others being Sarah E., wife of Daniel 
Isham, of Buffalo township; Newton, who 
died in childhood; Charles \V., a merchant 
of Polo; and Franklin II., who lives with 
his parents. 

Since attaining his majority, George 
Smith has been working the home farm. 
The estate is yet intact, and since the 
death of the father the children have made 
some valuable improvements on it, having 
erected a large barn and other outbuildings. 
In politics he is an ardent Republican. Mr. 
and Mrs. Smith have one son, John W. 
The family are highly esteemed in the com- 
munity in which they reside and their 
friends are many. 



SPENCER LAWSHE, who is retired from 
active business, is now a leading and 
highly respected citizen of Byron. Since 
copiing to this state in 1856 he has been 
principall}' engaged in agricultural pursuits, 
and has by shrewd judgment, excellent 
management, and fair business transactions, 
acquired sufficient property to enable him 
to give up active labor and enjoy the results 
of his former toil. 




SPENCER LAWSHE. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



:65 



Mr. Lawshe is a native of New Jersey, 
his birth occurring in Hunterdon county, 
December 24, 1826. His grandfather, Jacob 
Lawshe, who was of German descent, hved 
to the remarkable age of ninety-nine years. 
The father, Henry Lawshe, who was also a 
native of New Jersey, grew to manhood in 
Hunterdon county, and there married Sarah 
Carter, who was born in the same county 
and was a daughter of Henry Carter. Mr. 
Lawshe was a weaver by trade but also en- 
gaged in farming, and met with good suc- 
cess in his undertaking, accumulating a com- 
petence. He died in his native state in 
1870, and his wife passed away a few years 
previously. Si.x children, five sons and one 
daughter, constituted their family, namely: 
William, who married and settled in New 
Jersey, but later removed to Austin, Illinois, 
where his death occurred; George married 
and spent his entire life in New Jersey; 
Spencer is the ne.xt of the family; Hannah 
is the wife of John Dilts, a farmer of New Jer- 
sey; Lewis H. married and spent his entire life 
in New Jersey; and Jacob R. is a business 
man of Newark, that state. 

Until eighteen years of age Spencer 
Lawshe remained with his father, assisting 
in the labors of the home farm and attend- 
ing the local schools to a limited e.xtent, his 
education being mostly self-acquired since 
reaching manhood. He served a three 
years' apprenticeship to the tanner's and 
currier's trade, and then followed that occu- 
pation for five years in his native state. 
There he married Rachel Tomlinson, who 
died after a short married life of a year 
and a half. After her death he came 
west to Rockford, Illinois, in 1856, and 
for one year operated a rented farm in 
Winnebago county. He then located near 
Freeport and followed the same occu- 



pation there for three years. In i860 
he became a resident of Carroll count}', 
where, after renting for one year, lie pur- 
chased a farm of two hundred and forty- 
five acres. While there he was again mar- 
ried, March 20, 1864, his second union being 
with Miss Ruby A. Rogers, who was also 
born, reared and educated in Hunterdon 
county. New Jersey. Her father, Major 
Rogers, was a native of Connecticut, from 
whence he removed to New Jersey when a 
young man, and was married there to Eliz- 
abeth Bodine, a native of that state, and 
in 1856 they came to Carroll county, Illi- 
nois, locating on a farm. In the east Mr. 
Rogers worked at his trade of shoemaking 
and also taught vocal music. 

After carrying on his farm in Carroll 
county for about five years, Mr. Lawshe 
sold and moved to Rockford, where he pur- 
chased residence property and engaged in 
the express business for sixteen years. In 
1S84 he became a resident of Ogle county, 
and first bought one hundred and seventy- 
two acres of good farming land in Rock- 
vale township, two miles from Byron, 
which was well improved, and to which he 
later added an adjoining tract of one hun- 
dred and twenty acres, making a valuable 
place of two hundred and ninety-two acres. 
His time and attention were devoted to its 
further improvement and cultivation until 
the spring of 1897, when he rented the 
farm and removed to Byron, where he has 
since lived retired. 

Of the eight children born to Mr. and 
Mrs. Lawshe, six are now living. Major R. 
died in childhood; Emma is the wife of 
Sherman Taylor, a farmer of Marion town- 
ship; Alice died at the age of twelve years; 
George H. is a farmer of Shelby county, 
Iowa. Carrie is the wife of Amos Blanch- 



2 66 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ard, a farmer of Ogle county; Charles S. 
is a business man of Cfiicago; J. Franklin 
is in California, and Fred H. is at home. 
Politically Mr. Lawshe was first identi- 
fied with the Whig party, casting his first 
vote for Zachary Taylor, but joined the Re- 
publican party on its organization and has 
since fought under its banner. He has 
never cared for the honors or emoluments 
of public office, but has always faithfully dis- 
charged his duties of citizenship and has 
supported those interests which he believed 
calculated to prove of public benefit. 



HENRY R. MEYERS, a prosperous and 
enterprising farmer residing on section 
13, Lincoln township, owns and operates 
two hundred acres of land. He is a native 
of the township, born January 16, 184S. 
His father, Jonathan Meyers, was born in 
Dauphin county, Pennsylvania, in 1S12. 
His grandfather, Jacob Meyers, was a native 
of German)'. In his native state Jonathan 
Meyers grew to manhood, and in his youth 
learned the mason's trade. In early man- 
hood he went to Hagerstown, Maryland, 
and there worked at his trade a few years, 
then came west and settled in Ogle county. 
This was in 1837. Here he took up a claim 
of several hundred acres of land in Lincoln 
township, and later entered several tracts 
and opened up three or four farms. He 
became in due time a very prosperous and 
vvelbto-do farmer. He was married in this 
county to Elizabeth Redman, a native of 
Germany, who came to the new world a 
young lady, with an aunt, and after residing 
in Pennsylvania a few years came west and 
located in White Eagle, Maryland townsliip. 
Ogle county, where she was residing at the 
time she gave her hand in marriage to Jon- 



athan Meyers. They became the parents 
of four sons and three daughters and all but 
one grew to mature years. Peter R. owns 
and operates the old homestead. Lydia is 
the wife of Lewis Boby, of Forreston. 
Sarah is the wife of Benjamin McCutcheon, 
of Forreston. Henry R. is ne.xt in order of 
birth. Jonathan R. resides in Forreston. 
Elizabeth is the wife of Joseph E. Garman, 
of Maryland township. Aaron R. died at 
the age of three years. 

On one of his farms in Lincoln township 
Jonathan Meyers located with his bride, 
and there they reared their children. To 
his agricultural interests Mr. Meyers gave 
his undivided time and attention, caring 
nothing for the honors or emoluments of 
public office. He was a thoroughly prac- 
tical farmer, and withal industrious, and it 
is no wonder that success crowned his efforts. 
His wife was called to her reward January 
16, 1890, and he followed her July I 5, 1893. 
They were members of the Lutheran church, 
good Christian people, and worthy of the 
respect in which they were held. 

Henry R. Meyers spent his boyhood 
and youth on the home farm and was edu- 
cated in the West Grove school. He was 
early given his regular duties to perform in 
operating the home farm andjgrew up to be 
a thoroughly practical farmer. He re- 
mained at home with his parents until he 
was twenty-nine years old, being a great 
help to his parents. He was married in 
Lincoln township, January 13, 1S78, to 
Miss Rebecca Elizabeth Mase, also a native 
of Lincoln township. Ogle county, and 
daughter of John M. Mase, a nati\e of 
Pennsylvania, who there grew to manhood 
and came to Ogle county a young man, here 
marrying Miss Ellen Meyers, a native of 
Marjland, who came to Ogle county when 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



267 



but two years old with her father, Jacob 
Meyers, who was also a native of Maryland. 
By this union four children were born, of 
whom but one is now living, Oliver Grant, 
a young man at home. Roy died at the 
age of fourteen months, Luella at seven 
months, and Sylvia at eight months. 

Soon after his marriage, Mr. Meyers 
erected a dwelling house on his present 
farm, and in the fall of the same year moved 
to the place where he has since resided. 
After moving to the place he turned his at- 
tention to its further improvement, erecting 
a good substantial barn, granary, and vari- 
ous outbuildings, set out an orchard, planted 
shade and ornamental trees, remodeled the 
house, until he to-day has one of the best- 
improved farms in the township. 

Politically Mr. Meyers is an earnest and 
enthusiastic Republican, advocating the 
principles of the party even before he at- 
tained his majority. His first presidential 
vote was cast for U. S. Grant in 1872, and 
he has since supported the Republican can- 
didate at every presidential election. He 
was elected and served as commissioner of 
highways for nine consecutive years, but has 
never wanted public office. Fraternally he 
is a member of the Odd F"e!lows lodge at 
Forreston. As a citizen he is held in high 
esteem, and a progressive man he lends aid 
to all worthy enterprises. 



WILLIAM ELLIS, who is now living 
retired in the village of Byron, is one 
of the oldest and most highly esteemed citi- 
zens of Ogle county. Years of quiet use- 
fulness and a life in which the old-fashioned 
virtues of sincerity, industry and integrity- 
are exemplified have a simple beauty that 
no words can portray. Youth has its 



charms, but an honorable and honored old 
age, to which the lengthening years have 
added dignity and sweetness, has a brighter 
radiance, as if some ray from the life beyond 
already rested upon it. 

Mr. Ellis was born in Attleboro, Massa- 
chusetts, June 22, 1808, and is a representa- 
tive of a family of Welsh origin, who was 
founded in Dedham, that state, by an old 
gentleman and his seven sons at an early 
day. The grandfather, Richard Ellis, was 
a native of Massachusetts, as was also the 
father, Hon. George Ellis, who, on reach- 
ing manhood, married Miss Polly Fisher, 
who was born near Dedham. They loca- 
ted on a farm in Attleboro, where they 
reared their family and spent the remainder 
of their lives. The father was one of the 
most prominent and infiuential men of the 
community, and for one or more terms ably 
represented his district in the state legis- 
lature. In the family were nine children, 
four sons and five daughters, who reached 
years of maturity, but Daniel and Darwin 
are now deceased; William is the subject of 
this review; George Otis is a resident of 
Middleboro, Connecticut; Adelia, Maria and 
Emeline all married, but are now deceased; 
Mrs. Catherine Plymton is a widow living 
in Pawtucket, Rhode Island; Harriet is the 
wife of Otis Putney, of Pawtucket, Rhode 
Island; and Elizabeth died when young. 

William Ellis grew to manhood on the 
old home farm in Massachusetts, and had 
fair school advantages. He learned the 
jeweler's trade at Attleboro, serving a three 
years' apprenticeship, and continued to fol- 
low the business there for a few j'ears. At 
Middleboro. Connecticut, in 1845, l''^ mar- 
ried Miss Justina Abbott, a native of that 
state and a daughter of David Abbott, who 
belonged to an old and historic family. She 



268 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



had six uncles who were ministers in the 
Methodist Episcopal church and one who 
followed the legal profession. To Mr. and 
Mrs. Ellis were born seven children, four 
of whom are now living, one son and three 
daughters, namely: Adelaide J. married 
David J. Simpson, of Byron, Illinois, who 
is now engaged in gold mining in Utah, and 
their daughter, Helen Barnum, is now the 
wife of Charles Beggs, who is connected 
with the Standard Oil Company at Pitts- 
burg, Pennsyh'ania. Eleanor F. married 
Robert Spottswood, who is engaged in the 
grain and lumber business in Winnebago, 
Illinois. Fred W. is interested in railroad- 
ing at Fall City, Washington. Harriet is 
the wife of Labra Spoor, a merchant of 
Byron. Those deceased are Frances A., 
Frank H. and George B. 

After his marriage Mr. Ellis and his 
brother George Otis engaged in the manu- 
facture of buckles and buttons at Middle- 
boro, Connecticut, for a number of years, 
but in 1852 he came to Illinois and first 
located at Rockford, where he worked in 
the factory of Ciark & Utter for about eight 
years. He then purchased a farm six miles 
from that city and successfully engaged in 
agricultural pursuits until 1889, when he 
sold the place and the following year moved 
to Byron, where he purchased property and 
has since lived retired, enjoying a well- 
earned rest. His faithful wife passed away 
in April, 1891, at the age of sixty-three 
years. 

In politics Mr. Ellis was originally a 
Jackson Democrat, casting his first vote for 
Old Hickory, but on the organization of 
the Republican party in 1856 he joined its 
ranks and has since been one of its stalwart 
supporters. On the 20th of September, 
1849, he was made a Mason in Harmony 



lodge at Waterbury, Connecticut, and still 
holds membership there, being its oldest 
living member. In the summer of 1898 he 
and his daughter, Mrs. Simpson, made a 
trip east and spent three months in visiting 
in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Isl- 
and, Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio. 
Although over ninety years of age he is still 
hale and hearty and has the appearance of 
a man not to exceed seventy, as he is erect 
and active, while his hearing is good and 
his eyesight only slightly impaired. Nature 
deals kindly with the man who abuses not 
her laws. 



SAMUEL KNODLE, dealer in watches, 
clocks, jewelry, silverware and dia- 
monds, Mt. Morris, Illinois, has now the 
distinction of having been engaged in the 
mercantile business a longer period of time 
than any other man in the village. He was 
born in Fairplay, Washington county, Mary- 
land, a hamlet eight miles south of Hagers- 
town, the county seat, August 4, 1820. 
He attended the public school at Fairplay 
from the time he was nine years old until 
he was sixteen, from which time he applied 
himself studiously to the acquisition of an 
academic education, in the meantime assist- 
ing his father in his store of general mer- 
chandise. Following this he had a clerk- 
ship in the store of Major E. Baker, and 
later a clerkship in the general commission 
house of Meixsell & Struebaker, of Balti- 
more. Leaving the latter position in the 
fall of 1839, he returned to the place of his 
nativity and again took a position in his 
father's store, which he filled until the fall 
of 1842. 

On the 13th of January, 1S43, Mr. Kno- 
dle was united in marriage with Miss Ellen 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



269 



Dick, who was born at Winchester, Vir- 
ginia, June 12, 1823. In May, following, 
they removed to Boonsboroug, Maryland, 
where he engaged as teacher in the { ublic 
shcool, and continued to fill that position 
until January, 1846, in the meantime having 
been in partnership with his brother, Jo- 
siah, in printing and publishing a weekly 
newspaper called The Odd Fellow. The 
paper was not a fraternal paper, as its name 
would indicate, but purely a local paper. 
Having a taste for newspaper work, in Jan- 
uary, 1846, he removed to Williamsport, 
Maryland, and purchased of Judge Daniel 
Weisel, The Republican Banner, a Whig 
newspaper founded by him January i, 1830. 
Six volumes of this paper are yet in posses- 
sion of Mr. Knodle, and they embrace the 
history of several of the most exciting po- 
litical campaigns recorded in the annals of 
the country, notably that of the Andrew 
Jackson and Henry Clay contest for the 
presidency in 1832. 

After purchasing the material of the 
office of The Republican Banner, Mr. Kno- 
dle then commenced the issue of The 
Times, which he continued to edit and pub- 
lish until the fall of 1848, when he sold the 
office and removed back to Fairplay, and 
engaged as a teacher of the public school 
there, in which he continued until March, 
1856. In April of the same year he came 
to Mt. Morris, expecting to secure the pub- 
lic school at this place, but circumstances 
favoring his embarking in the jewelry trade 
he relinquished his time-honored profession, 
and on the 20th of May, 1856, he opened 
a jewelry shop in rooms in the Eldorado 
House, then conducted by the late Jona- 
than Mumma. From that day to the pres- 
ent time he has pursued that avocation. 

During his residence in Mt. Morris, in 
29 . . 



connection with his regular business, he has 
been identified with all the various news- 
paper enterprises up to 1879. In 1858-9, 
he conducted the Northwestern Republican 
for an association of citizens who purchased 
the office of Atwood & Metcalf, who had 
established the paper in the fall of 1857. 
In 1860-61, he managed the Independent 
Watchman, whom a like association of 
business men had bought of Col. M. S. 
Barnes, who had purchased the office of the 
former association. This ended his news- 
paper business in Mt. Morris until July, 

1876, when he again embarked in the busi- 
ness, in the establishment of The Inde- 
pendent, owned by a corporation company, 
Mr. I\nodle owning nearly one-half of the 
stock, consisting of a well-equipped job 
printing plant, which was added to the 
newspaper outfit, the job office having been 
conducted by him since 1872. In May, 

1877, the Independent Company sold the 
the office to Henry Sharer, and his son, 
John, then immediately commenced the 
publication of the Ogle County Democrat, 
with Mr. Knoole, as manager of the typo- 
graphical department and proof reader. 

Mr. Knodle had a family of nine chil- 
dren. Emanuel Luther was born at Boons- 
borough, Marland, April 17, 1844, and died 
July 23, of the same year. Washington Irv- 
ing, born June 13, 1845, died December 29, 
1S45. Charles William, born at Williams- 
port, Maryland, April 13, 1S47, died Janu- 
ary 16, 1848. Mary Ann, born at Fairplay, 
Maryland, July 3, 1849, died December 16, 
1849. Edwin Wilme, born at Fairplay, 
December 6, 1850, is now living near Mon- 
roe, Wisconsin. Jane Elizabeth, born at 
Mt. Morris, Illinois, June 8, 1857, married 
John A. Walker, February 14, 1880, and 
they are now residing in Mt. Morris. Lillie 



2/0 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Belle, born in Mt. Morris, January 5, i860, 
married George Eliot Coffman, January 16, 
1879, and they now reside in Thayer, Kan- 
sas. Thomas Oscar, born in Mt. Morris, 
August 29, 1863, died August 25, 1865. 
Ernest Elmer, born in Mt. Morris, October 
5, 1868, married Miss Mary Carpenter, 
April 10, 1893, and they now reside in 
Rockford, Illinois. 

Mr. Knodle's father, Samuel Knodle, 
Sr., was born in Adams county, Pennsyl- 
vania, April 23, 1784, and was married at 
Hagerstown, Maryland, January 3, 1806, 
to Miss Jane Cutshaw, who was also born 
in Adams county, Pennsylvania. What 
time they removed to Maryland is not known, 
but some time prior to 18 10. at about which 
time his father built the first house at the 
place which was afterwards known as Fair- 
play, where his parents continued to reside 
until the day of their death, his father dy- 
ing May 29, 1851, and his mother January 
23, 1865. 

Since coming to Mt. Morris, Mr. Knodle 
has been quite active in local affairs. He 
was clerk of the township of Mt. Morris 
from 1858 to 1861, and in i860, 1861, and 
1868, served as village clerk. In 1871 he 
served as village trustee and president of 
the board. In 1883 he was elected village 
clerk, and has been annually re-elected, 
making twenty years service in that office. 
In 1S76 he was collector of the township of 
Mt. Morris. Few men have the good will 
of their fellow men in a higher degree. 



CHARLES W. GARNHART, a wide- 
awake and progressive farmer residing 
on section 25, Marion township, four miles 
and a half south of Stillman Valley, is a 
man whose sound common sense and vigor- 



ous, able management of his affairs have 
been important factors in his success, and 
with his undoubted integrity of character 
have given him an honorable position among 
his fellowmen. His birth occurred in North- 
umberland county, Pennsylvania, August 27, 
1834, and he is a representative of one of 
the old honored families of that state. 
There his great-grandfather, Peter Garn- 
hart, and grandfather, Balsar Garnhart, 
were also born, and the latter was a pioneer 
of Northumberland county, his early home 
having been in the southern part of the 
state. John Garnhart, father of our sub- 
ject, was born on the same farm in North- 
umberland county where his son's birth oc- 
curred, and there he grew to manhood and 
followed farming for some years. He mar- 
ried Louisa Moress, also a native of Penn- 
sylvania, and a daughter of Squire Moress. 
In 1849 they started across the country to 
Illinois v/ith two teams and arrived in Ogle 
county during the fall. That winter the 
father purchased the farm on which our 
subject now resides, but the only improve- 
ment found thereon at that time was a rude 
log cabin, while about thirty acres had been 
broken by the plow. Acre after acre was 
soon placed under cultivation, and in due 
time a pleasant brick residence was erected, 
and also a good barn with a basement, mak- 
ing it one of the best improved farms of the 
county. For many years Mr. Garnhart was 
one of the most active and successful farm- 
ers of the community, but spent his last 
years in retirement in Rockford, passing 
away at his home there July 26, 1870. His 
first wife died on the home farm and he 
subsequently married again. 

By the first union there were seven chil- 
dren, si.\ sons and one daughter, of whom 
Charles W., our subject, is the eldest; 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



271 



Harry married and located on the old home- 
stead where his death occurred; George W. 
is a farmer near Polo, Illinois; David P. 
served as a soldier during the war of the 
Rebellion and now resides on a farm in 
Stephenson county, Illinois; Mary C. is 
the wife of Wallace Walters, of Calhoun 
county, Iowa; Aaron, who was also a sol- 
dier in the Civil war, later became a busi- 
ness man of Davenport, Iowa, and there 
died; and John W. is a farmer of Pine Rock 
township, Ogle county. 

Charles W. Garnhartwas a lad of fifteen 
years when the family came to Ogle county, 
and being the eldest son he was early in- 
ured to the arduous task of developing wild 
land into productive and well cultivated 
fields. He also assisted in making improve- 
ments upon the place. He received good 
common school advantages and at the age 
of nineteen years began life for himself by 
working by the month for Peter Smith for 
two years. He then learned the carpen- 
ter's and joiner's trade, which he followed 
forabout the same length of time. He 
rented land in White Rock township and 
successfully engaged in farming on his own 
account. In the spring of 1862 he bought 
his first land, which was an improved land 
of one hundred and twenty-eight acres in 
Pine Rock township, and after operating it 
for about six years he bought eighty-eight 
acres adjoining, making a fine farm of two 
hundred and seventeen acres, upon which 
he made many substantial improvements. 
He lived there until 1877, when he pur- 
chased the old homestead and rented the 
former place. He started out in life for 
himself empty-handed, and for his work re- 
ceived but small wages. This did not dis- 
courage him, however, and he is to-day the 
owner of two valuable farms, which have 



been obtained through his own labor, econ- 
omy and well-directed efforts. 

In September, 1861, in Ogle county, Mr. 
Garnhart led to the marriage altar Miss 
Caroline Lilley, who was also born in North- 
umberland county, Pennsylvania, and when 
a child of thirteen years was brought to Illi- 
nois with her parents, David and Catherine 
Lilley, who settled in Marion township. Ogle 
county, in the spring of 1847. Of the five 
children born to Mr. and Mrs. Garnhart two 
died in infancy. Those living are Lawrence 
D., a carpenter and joiner, now residing in 
Minnesota; William H., who assists in car- 
rying on the home farm; and Clarence W., 
a carpenter and joiner residing at home. 

Mr. Garnhart has been an ardent Re- 
publican in political sentiment since casting 
his first vote for John C. Fremont in 1856, 
and he has taken quite an active and prom- 
inent part in local politics. At the age of 
twenty-two he was elected a member of the 
school board, and served as such for twen- 
ty-five or thirty years, most of the time be- 
ing president of the board, also serving as 
clerk part of the time. He has also filled 
the office of commissioner of highways for 
si.xteen years, and being the present incum- 
bent he has two more years to serve. His 
official duties have always been most 
promptly and faithfully discharged, and he 
is now most capably and satisfactorily fill- 
ing the office of township trustee. In all 
the relations of life he has been found true 
to every trust reposed in him, and well 
merits the high esteem in which he is held 
by all who know him. 



MAJOR EDWARD FELLOWS 
D U TCH ER .—Among the remain- 
ing early settlers of Ogle county is that 



272 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



distinguished lawyer, soldier and pioneer 
whose name heads this sketch. He was 
born April 2, 182S, in Canaan township, 
Litchfield county, Connecticut, on the Hou- 
satonic river. His education was obtained 
at the Lenox Academy, at Lenox, Mass- 
achusetts, and in a school at Salsibury, 
Connecticut. Later he took up the pro- 
fession of law, and in 1836 entered the 
law office of Woods & Morse, at Lock- 
port, New York, and began his reading. He 
read in this and other offices until 1842, 
when he was admitted to the bar in Or- 
leans county. New York, and soon after- 
wards formed a partnership with Judge Roy- 
al Chamberlain for practice in that county, 
locating at Lynden. In 1846 he became 
imbued with a desire to go west, and in that 
year he is found located at Oregon, Ogle 
county, Illinois, with hisofficeopen for busi- 
ness. 

Major Dutcher is the son of Captain Ru- 
luff Dutcher, who was born at Dutcher's 
Bridge, Litchfield county, Connecticut, a 
farmer by occupation, a soldier of the war 
of I Si 2, serving as captain of a com- 
pany. His father, the grandfather of our 
subject, was Captain Ruluff Dutcher, who 
was born in 1738 and who served through 
the war of the Revolution, entering the serv- 
ice first as corporal in Captain James Hud- 
son's company of Major Skinner's regiment 
of light-horse militia. His name appears 
on the rolls of the war department as having 
"marched June 29th. Time when discharg- 
ed, August 3d. Daj's in service, 38." Lat- 
er the war records show him with the rank 
of captain of a company of Major Sheldon's 
regiment of light horse in 1776. This roll 
contains special remarks relative to his serv- 
ice. This Revolutionary captain was a son 
of a Hollander whose name was also Ruluff, 



and who was born on the ocean while his 
parents were en route to America. He 
died January 17, 1736. 

The mother of our subject was Lucinda 
Howe, daughter of Elisha Howe, of English 
ancestry. She was a cousin of Admiral 
Howe, of the English navy. She died at 
Amboy, Illinois, August 27, 1874, in her 
eighty-seventh year, and her remains were 
interred at Oregon. The paternal grand- 
mother, Jane Dutcher, in'c Ashley, was the 
daughter of John Ashley, who was a general 
in the Revolutionary war. The second 
daughter of John Ashley, Mary, married 
John Fellows, who was also a general in 
the war for independence. John Fellows' 
son, Edward, was a colonel in the same 
war, and is the one from whom the subject 
of this sketch is named. Revolutionary 
records also show that William Bull, the 
first husband of Jane Ashley, was a surgeon 
in the Revolutionary war and died from 
smallpox, and that later Jane married Major 
Dutcher's grandfather. 

Ruluff and Lucinda Dutcher were the 
parents of nine children, as follows: Fred- 
erick R., born December 21, 1804; Caroline 
M., born July i, 1806; William A., born 
January 7, 1809, and died in 1850; Emeline 
J., born June i, 18 12; Elisha W^ells, born 
in 181 5; Edward F. , our subject; Catherine 
L. , born November 15, 1820; Samuel A., 
born January 7, 1823; and Elizabeth S., 
born May 10, 1825. Emeline, who mar- 
ried Herman B. Bushnell, was matron of 
the Soldiers' Home, Quincy, Illinois, for 
three years. Her only son. Lieutenant 
Pierre Bushnell, was killed during the Civil 
war. Caroline M., who married Frederick 
A. Sterling, died at her son's home in St. 
Louis, January 3, 1898, at the age of ninety- 
two years. Her only daughter married 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



V3 



Joseph H. Choate, the distinguished lawyer 
of New York city. Samuel A. is living at 
Farley, Iowa. 

Major Dutcher was reading law at Lock- 
port, at the time of the burning of the 
steamer Caroline, at Schlosser. To him 
was given the important charge of going to 
Buffalo for a capias for the arrest of the 
British officer under whose orders the vessel 
was burned. During the Canadian trouble 
of 1837-8, Major Dutcher was arrested at 
Hamilton, Ontario, and held a prisoner for 
four days as a rebel, together with seven- 
teen other Americans, whose sympathies 
for the Canadians brought the action of the 
higher powers against them. 

It was not long after Mr. Dutcher opened 
his office at Oregon before the people of 
this section of the country became satisfied 
that he was a lawyer of no mean ability. 
In fact he soon took front rank among the 
members of the profession, and before the 
war for the Union commenced he was rec- 
ognized as the leading criminal lawyer of 
the northwestern part of the state. He 
was of Revolutionary stock of patriotic an- 
cestors, and when the war broke out and a 
blow was aimed at the union his ancestors 
had helped create, it was his second nature 
to take a hand and help parry that blow. 
Accordingly his name is found on the mus- 
ter roll in August, 1S62. He was soon after 
commissioned second lieutenant, with au- 
thority from Governor Yates to recruit a 
company, which he soon had ready, and it 
was assigned to the Seventy-fourth Illinois 
\'olunteer Infantr\'. On the organization 
of the regiment he was elected major, and 
with his regiment he reached the front Oc- 
tober 1st, and was assigned to the Army of 
the Cumberland. In all he recruited some 
four hundred men for the army. With his 



regiment he took part in the battle of Cham- 
plain Hill, and the skirmishes in pursuit of 
General Bragg. He was also in action at 
the battles of Perryville, Lancaster, Knobb 
Gap, Overall Creek, Stone River and in all 
the skirmishes and marches in which his 
regiment was engaged, until he received his 
discharge in March, 1863, on account of 
disability. For seventy days after the bat- 
tle of Stone River, Major Dutcher was in 
command of his regiment, and was in the 
expedition to Franklin, Tennessee, under 
General Jeff C. Davis, the object being to 
intercept Forrest and Wheeler. On leaving 
the army he returned to Oregon, and on re- 
gaining his health resumed the practice of 
his profession. 

Major Dutcher was united in marriage, 
in 1849, to Elizabeth C. Van Valkenburj.;, 
a native of Kinderhook, New York. This 
union was blessed with six children. Ed- 
ward S. was a resident of St. L(_)uis, Mis- 
souri. He is now deceased. William H. 
lives at Oregon, and has served as United 
States deputy marshal for the northern dis- 
trict of Illinois. Ruluff E. married Maggie 
Terwilliger, and they reside in Council 
Grove, Kansas. George A. married Laura 
McCary, and they reside in Oregon. Katie 
S. and Mary A. died in childhood. Mrs. 
Elizabeth C. Dutcher departed this life 
May 13, 1876. In 1879 Major Dutcher 
married Sarah (Marsh) Scripter, of Batavia, 
New York, who died in June, 1S95. 

Major Dutcher has always been an earn- 
est Democrat, though generally in advance 
of his party, politically. He has lived in a 
county and district some fifty years which 
has been largely Republican, yet he has 
been true to his early training, but discuss- 
ing freely what he conceived to be the errors 
of his party. In 1S49, in a series of able 



274 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



articles, he denounced in unmeasured terms 
the "black laws" of 1845. These papers 
brought upon him much censure from the 
members of the Democratic and Whig par- 
ties who supported those laws. In the days 
of Knownothingism he took an advanced 
position in the advocacy of the doctrine 
which he claimed every foreigner coming to 
the United States to reside should adopt — 
he should be required to file his intention 
to become a citizen, and that a court hav- 
ing jurisdiction should be the scene of this 
action within ninety days after his arrival. 
In that way only should aliens be allowed 
to enter government land, ami then only 
upon the further condition that said alien 
should become a naturalized citizen within 
six years thereafter, and in case of failure 
to secure such citizenship, such lands should 
revert back to the general government. 
Later legislation has shown the soundness 
of these views and his far-seeing mind. 

The major has alwa3-s taken an active 
part in political matters, but living in a dis- 
trict where his party was in the minority, 
political preferment even if desired was out 
of the question. He severely denounced 
the verdict of the electoral commission, 
and has alwajs held that Tilden was duly 
elected. He was a delegate to the Demo- 
cratic convention that nominated Horatio 
Seymour for president, and has twice been 
chosen presidential elector for Illinois. 

Major Dutcher has been in active life 
for nearly a half century in this and adjoin- 
ing circuits, and has acquired a reputation 
in criminal law practice e.xcelled by none. 
Up to within a few years he was connected 
with almost every important criminal trial 
in this circuit, and in every case of homicide 
with which he was connected he has saved 
his client from the death penalty save one, 



and this one exception was when he was ap- 
pointed by the court to defend a prisoner in 
the absence of his attorney, and had no 
time to prepare for trial. With his thor- 
ough knowledge of criminal jurisprudence, 
his analytical mind quick to grasp all the 
salient points of a cause, his intuitive esti- 
mate of the character of evidence, his clear, 
logical arguments and forceful reasoning, 
win for him the respect and attention of the 
court and the confidence of the jury. 
Courtly and fair in the conduct of cases was 
another attribute he possessed. This, to- 
gether with his willingness to give his best 
efforts to the poor client, as well as the one 
who could produce a handsome retainer, 
made him the ideal lawyer. His phenom- 
enal memory was another aid in his profes- 
sion, and in the longest trials he rarely took 
notes. 

During the war the Major generally had 
two horses with him, and many a weary or 
wounded soldier, unable to keep up, had his 
sore feet relieved, or his limbs rested, or 
saved from capture by the rebels, by riding 
the major's horses, while he would jog along 
afoot. He has always held to the immortal 
principle embodied in the Declaration of 
Independence, that "all men are created 
equal." He is to-day an active member of 
the Grand Army of the Republic, and has 
aided hundreds of soldiers in securing their 
pensions without charge. 

In addition to his practice the Major has 
been an extensive breeder of fine horses, an 
animal of which he is very proud. He has 
raised some very fast horses and has ma- 
terially aided in improving the stock of this 
noble animal in Ogle and adjoiningcounties. 
After a residence of over a half century in 
Oregon, and although he has passed his 
four score years, he is yet hale and hearty, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



= 75 



with form erect, and his mental powers un- 
impaired. He was reared in the Episcopal 
faith, and his reUgious views incline in that 
direction. Genial in manners, he has al- 
ways had many warm friends. 



SILAS WRIGHT LEWIS, a leading res- 
ident of Rockvale township, and a 
thorough and experienced farmer, was born 
in Saratoga county, New York, November 
1 8, 1S43, and is the son of the late Stephen 
Lewis and his wife, Judith Maria (Boyce) 
Lewis, natives of Herkimer county. New 
York, the former born November 25, 18 18, 
and the latter October 23, 1822. Mr. and 
Mrs. Lewis were married June 30, 1839, 
and are the parents of two children, Caro- 
line, who married George Clancy, and died 
in 1863, and Silas Wright. 

When the subject of this sketch was a 
child of five years, his father, believing 
that the west afforded greater opportunities 
for advancement and progress, moved his 
family to Buffalo, and thence to Chicago by 
way of the great lakes, which place he left 
for Oregon, Illinois, moving later to Rock- 
vale township, where he rented successive- 
ly, for periods of two years each, the farms 
of Hiram Read, William Irvine, John 
James, Hiram Getchell and the Hill farm. 
Later he purchased two hundred acres on 
section 9, where he lived until his death, 
which occurred October 25, 1879, and 
where his wife still resides at the comforta- 
ble age of seventy-seven. 

Mr. Lewis' grandparents, John and 
Elizabeth (Millis) Lewis, were natives of 
Saratoga county. They were farmers by 
occupation, and emigrated to Ogle county 
in 1879, where they resided until their 
death. His great-grandparents on both 



sides, took part in the great struggle that 
gave us our freedom, and which was the 
first step toward the position which we now 
occupy, one of the foremost nations of the 
earth. 

Our subject first attended school at the 
home of Mrs. Ditwilder, and later, in an 
old log house which was converted into a 
school-room. When not attending school 
Mr. Lewis assisted his father about the 
farm, and at odd times picked up carpen- 
tering and blacksmithing, at which he 
became very proficient. He is still actively 
engaged in the cultivation of his farm, a 
valuable tract of two hundred acres. 

December 15, 1871, our subject was 
united in holy matrimony, to Mary Palmer, 
who was born on the 9th of October, 1851, 
and is a daughter of Harry and Ljdia 
(Beeler) Palmer. Mr. and Mrs. Lewis are 
the parents of four children: Elma, the eld- 
est, died of scarlet fever when but two 
years of age; Zelda May, born in 1875, is 
the wife of Lawson Stine. They have a 
bright little son of three years, and are 
living on the Frank Knode farm; Stephen, 
a typical specimen of }'oung America, was 
born October 25, 1878, and remains at 
home to assist his father in the management 
and superintendence of the home farm; 
Lydia, the youngest child, was born in 18S1, 
and is the wife of George E. Smith. They 
reside at the home of our subject and are 
the parents of a fine daughter born January 
7, 1899, Mary P. Smith. 

Politically, Mr. Lewis is a Republican, 
and takes a keen interest in all affairs of 
state. He is at present holding the office 
of school director, in which capacity he has 
served for three terms. He has also served 
as pathmaster. It seems hard to realize, in 
looking over Mr. Lewis' farm, that these 



fjd 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



lands now in such excellent state of cultiva- 
tion, were so recently the home of the deer, 
and other wild game, but America is 
nothing if not progressive and to her people 
belong the credit of this progression. It 
is to the agriculturists, however, that we 
owe our standing as the greatest grain- 
producing country in the world. 



JOHN SHELLY, a prominent and influ- 
ential farmfer residing on section ii, 
Forreston township. Ogle county, was born 
in Blair county, Pennsylvania, August 15, 
1850, and is a son of Abram and Elizabeth 
(Snively) Shelly, who were also natives of 
Pennsylvania and were married in Blair 
count}', where the father carried on opera- 
tions as a farmer until 1870. Coming to 
Illinois in that year, he spent one year in 
Ogle. county, and then located in Carroll 
county, where he bought an improved place 
and again turned his attention to farming. 
There he spent his last years, dying Septem- 
ber25, 1875, at the age of seventy-two years, 
ten months and twentj-three days. His 
wife, who survived him for a number of 
years, passed away in 1896, at the age 
of eighty-five years, three months and fif- 
teen days. Besides our subject, the other 
children of the family were as follows: 
Jacob, a traveling salesman residing in 
Shannon, Carroll county; Mrs. Susan Bre- 
neman, of Lenark, Illinois; Mrs. Henry 
Shirk, of Shannon; Mrs. Lizzie Hoffee, who 
makes her home near Grundy Center, Iowa; 
Mrs. Barbara Shirk, of Carroll county ; Mrs. 
Sarah Stonrook, of Cedar county, Iowa; 
Mrs. Louisa Bowers, of Kansas; and Mrs. 
Albert Puterbaugh, of Plattsburg, Missouri. 
John Shelly received a good common- 
school educatiiHi in his native state and was 



a young man when he came with the family 
to Illinois. Here he assisted his father in 
the operation of the home farm until the 
latter's death. In Forreston township, Ogle 
county, December 4, 1877, he led to the 
marriage altar Miss Barbara Shirk, also 
a native of Blair county, Pennsylvania. 
Her father. Rev. Joseph Shirk, a minister 
of the Dunkard church, was born in Lan- 
caster county, that state, in 1827, and in 
Pennsylvania grew to manhood. He mar- 
ried Miss Rebecca Miller, a native of 
Bedford county, Pennsylvania, born in 1834, 
where he engaged in farming for a number 
of years. On coming west in 1865 he first 
located on a farm in Forreston township, 
Ogle county, near Harper, but one year 
later removed to another farm on section 
II, the same township, where he engaged 
in agricultural pursuits for some years. 
Since 1895, however, he has lived retired 
in Shannon, enjoying a well-earned rest. 
Mrs. Shelly is the oldest in her family of 
four children, two sons and two daughters, 
the others being Robert, a farmer of Carroll 
county; Jennie, at home with her parents; 
and Porter, who now operates the old home 
farm. Our subject and his wife have three 
children: Ida M., who is now attending the 
Shannon high school; Harry N. and Oscar. 
They lost their oldest child, Alvin, who 
died at they age of two and a half years. 

For three years after his marriage Mr. 
Shelly engaged in agricultural pursuits on 
the Blair farm in Carroll county, and then 
bought the place on which he now resides 
on section 11, Forreston township, Ogle 
county. It was then but slightly improved, 
and the house' was in a rather dilapidated 
condition, but during the eighteen years of 
his residence here he has made many 
changes, has set out forest and ornamental 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



trees, has built a commodious and pleasant 
residence, erected good outbuildings and 
now has one of the neatest and best im- 
proved places of the township, comprising 
eighty acres. In connection with general 
farming he is engaged in the dairy business, 
and for this purpose keeps on hand from ten 
to fourteen cows. Formerly he was inter- 
ested in breeding and raising stock, and 
kept a good grade of cattle and hogs. He 
commenced life for himself in limited cir- 
cumstances, and by his own labor and enter- 
prise and the assistance of his estimable 
wife, he has become one of the prosperous 
and well-to-do farmers of the community in 
which he lives. He has always been a sup- 
porter of the Republican party, but has 
never aspired to office, though he has capably 
served as school director for ten years, and 
as clerk of the district. Religiously, both 
he and his wife are worthy members of the 
German Baptist church, and are held in high 
esteem by all who know them. 



JOHN FRANKLIN SPALDING, of By- 
ron, Illinois, is undoubtedly one of the 
best business men of Ogle county. Indus- 
try, enterprise and energy have been the 
crowning points of his success, and his con- 
nection with various business enterprises 
and industries have been of decided ad- 
vantage to this section of the state, pro- 
moting its material welfare in no uncertain 
manner. 

Mr. Spalding is a native of Illinois, his 
birth occurring in Winnebago county, Janu- 
ary 30, 1843. The Spalding family is of 
English extraction, and was founded in the 
United States in 161 9 by two brothers, one 
of whom settled in Connecticut, the other in 
Maryland. From the former, who bore the 

30 



name of Edward, our subject is descended. 
His great-grandfather, John Spalding, was a 
native of Connecticut, and served with dis- 
tinction as a colonel in the Revolutionary 
war. The grandfather, Harry Spalding, 
died at the early age of thirty-six years. 

S. S. Spalding, the father of our subject, 
was born in Bradford county, Pennsylvania, 
in 1S16, and in 1S35, when a young man of 
nineteen years, he came to Illinois. An 
older brother, John Franklin Spalding, had 
located here several years previous arud died 
in Chicago in 1832, while two other broth- 
ers, Asa and James, also came here in 1835, 
and Harry arrived several years later. S. S. 
Spalding and his two brothers spent the 
winter of 1835-6 in Peru, Illinois, and in 
the summer of 1836 came to Ogle county 
and located in Byron township. Our sub- 
ject's father took a claim two miles west of 
the village of Byron and opened up a farm 
of five hundred acres, becoming one of the 
prominent and substantial farmers of the 
county. He was married here to Miss 
Lydia Ann Weldon, a native of Strasburg, 
Pennsylvania, and a daughter of John Wel- 
don. She came to this state with Asa 
Spalding and died in November, 1S60, 
while her husband passed away in January, 
1869. To this worthy couple were born 
six children, of whom two daughters died 
in childhood. Those living are John Frank- 
lin, of this review; D. W., a resident of 
Chamberlain, South Dakota; Mrs. Alice 
Danforth, of California; and Mrs. Susan 
Stout, of St. Paul, Minnesota. 

Upon the home farm in Byron towiship, 
Mr. Spalding of this sketch grew to man- 
hood, and the early education he acquired 
in the district schools of the neighborhood 
was supplemented by a year's attendance 
at an academy in Monroe, Connecticut. On 



278 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



his return to Ogle county, he spent one 
year on the farm with his father, but in July, 
1862, he joined the boys in blue as private 
in Company B, Ninety-second Illinois Vol- 
unteer Infantry, which was assigned to the 
Army of the Cumberland. Later he was 
promoted to the rank of sergeant and parti- 
cipated in the battles of Chickamauga, 
Lookout Mountain, Missionary Ridge, the 
Atlanta campaign, the March to the Sea, 
and the engagements at Goldsboro and 
Raleigh. At Jonesboro he was disabled b}' 
a gunshot through the right shoulder and 
also through the left arm, and at Raleigh 
had a horse killed under him, while at 
Chickamauga his gun was shot to pieces. 
For three long years he followed the old 
flag to victory on southern battle fields, 
being mustered out at Concord, North 
Carolina, in June, 1865. 

On his return home, Mr. Spaulding 
commenced working by the month on a 
farm, and the following year operated 
rented land. On the 20th of December, 
1866, was celebrated his marriage with 
Miss Emily L. Reed, who was born and 
reared in Byron, her father, Lucius Reed, 
being a native of Vermont and a pioneer of 
Ogle county. They now have four children: 
Carl S., who is married and engaged in 
business in Byron; Lucius Reed, an electri- 
cian, who now has charge of the electric 
light plant at Kirkland, Illinois; Roy V. 
who has prepared himself for the legal pro- 
fession, graduating from the law department 
of the State University in June, 1898; and 
Ralph D , who is attending the home 
schools, and in five years has been neither 
absent nor tardy. 

In 1868 Mr. Spalding purchased a farm 
of one hundred and twenty acres, which 
had been placed under the plow and fenced. 



He erected thereon good buildings and en- 
gaged in its cultivation until 1875, when he 
sold the place and bought residence prop- 
erty in Byron, where he has since made his 
home. In 1873 he began to take contracts 
for building bridges and has followed that 
business continuously since with marked 
success, never having had an accident hap- 
pen through any fault of his own to a bridge 
he constructed. He build them of wood, 
iron and stone, but mostly of iron and 
stone, and has constructed more bridges in 
Ogle county than any three men together. 
He spent three weeks in the lobbies of the 
legislature trying to get the act passed 
authorizing the building of the Byron 
bridge, and later had the contract for part 
of the work on that structure. In 1876 he 
erected four store buildings on Main street, 
Byron, which were lost by fire two years 
later, and in 1878 he built the Commercial 
Hotel, which he conducted for five years in 
connection with his other business. He 
also built a livery stable and carried it on for 
ten years. He has a ranch in South Da- 
kota and is extensively interested in stock 
growing. He is one of the most active, 
progressive and successful business men of 
the community and the prosperity that has 
crowned his efforts is certainly well de- 
served. 

Since casting his first vote for General 
U. S. Grant in 1S6S, Mr. Spalding has 
been an ardent Republican, and has ever 
taken an active and prominent part in 
political affairs. He has most capably and 
satisfactorily filled the offices of school di- 
rector, commissioner of highways, village 
trustee, etc., and in 1888 was elected super- 
visor. So acceptably did he serve in that 
position that he has been constantly re- 
elected up to the present time, and was 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



279 



chairman of the board for two years. He 
has also been chairman of almost every 
committee and as superintendent had charge 
of all the business connected with the build- 
ing of the court house. He has taken an 
active interest in all public improvements 
and is recognized as one of the most pro- 
gressive and public-spirited citizens of the 
county. He has served as a delegate to the 
county and state conventions of his party, 
and during the fortieth general assembly 
was one of the three sergeants at arms and 
also through a called session. Socially he 
is a prominent member of the Grand Army 
post at Byron, in which he has served as 
commander, and he was also one of the 
trustees and a member of the building com- 
mittee during the erection of the Methodist 
Episcopal church at that place, of which 
his wife is a member. 

Mr. Spalding holds a commission given 
by Governor Fifer, in 1892, as a member 
of the National Nicaragua Canal convention, 
which held its first meeting at Saint Louis 
in June, 1892, and met the following year 
in November, in New Orleans. There were 
twenty-two commissioners appointed for 
the state of Illinois. 



BENJAMIN WOLF, a farmer residing 
on section 36, Woosuug township, 
was born November 13, 1839, in Hunting- 
don county, Pennsylvania, and is the son of 
Jacob and Elizabeth (Layman) Wolf, both 
of whom were natives of Pennsylvania, the 
former being born about 1S04. He was a 
shoemaker by trade, an occupation which 
he followed throughout life. He remained 
in Pennsylvania until iS 50 when he came 
to Ogle county and located in Pine Creek 
township, but still continued to work at 



his trade. His death occurred in 1875. 
In his family were nine sons, two of 
whom died in childhood. The living are 
Samuel, a farmer of Powesheik county, 
Iowa; Henry, a shoemaker of Polo, Illinois; 
George, a farmer of Powesheik county, 
Iowa; Jacob, a carpenter, residing in Polo; 
Benjamin, our subject; Joseph, a fruit 
grower of Los Angeles county, California; 
and John, a harness maker, residing in Iowa. 

In his native county our subject com- 
menced his education in the public schools. 
He was eleven years old when the family 
came to Ogle county, and in the public 
schools of this county he finished his educa- 
tion. As soon as physicially able he en- 
gaged in farm work for wages, and contin- 
ued in such employment until in July, 1861, 
when he enlisted in the Thirty-fourth Illi- 
nois Volunteer Infantry, under Colonel Van 
Tassel. His regiment was assigned to the 
second division of the fourth army corps, 
under Sherman and saw considerable hard 
service. With his regiment, Mr. Wolf par- 
ticipated in the battles of Shiloh, Mission 
Ridge, Liberty Gap, Rome, Georgia. Prior 
to the engagement of Stone River, while 
his regiment was on the extreme right of the 
army, it was compelled to retreat, and about 
fifty men of the regiment, including Mr. 
\\^olf, were captured by Confederate cavalry, 
but after being held about one hour, were 
re-captured by Union cavalry. He thus 
probably escaped a long confinement at 
Andersonville, the notorious rebel prison. 

In the siege before Atlanta, while hold- 
ing his haversack and drawing his rations, 
Mr. Wolf was struck by a rebel bullet, and 
two of his ribs were broken. He was sent 
to the hospital, where the next four months 
were spent. He was one week in the field 
hospital, and the remainder of the time in 



!So 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



the hospitals at Chattanooga and Nashville. 
During the latter part of his disability he 
was removed to the hospital at Mound City, 
Illinois, where he was taken with the small- 
pox. After his recovery he was transferred 
to the veteran reserve corps, where he spent 
the remainder of his term of service at Rock 
Island, guarding prisoners. He was dis- 
charged and mustered out of service July 2, 
1865, after giving four years of his time to 
the government. 

After receiving his discharge, Mr. Wolf 
returned to his home in Ogle county, and 
renting a piece of land in Pine Creek town- 
ship, he engaged in farming on his own ac- 
count. He was married March 8, 1866, to 
Miss Susan Sterner, who was born in Free- 
port, Illinois, and daughter of John and 
Fietta (Sheets) Sterner. She was an or- 
phan girl, her mother having died when she 
was only one year old. By this union there 
were three daughters born: Marietta, now 
the wife of Frank Ackert, of Di.xon, but 
who is in the postal service between Chi- 
cago and Council Bluffs, Iowa; Grace E., 
wife of Charles Hempleman, a farmer of 
Pine Creek township; and Gertrude S. , still 
at home. 

After his marriage, Mr. Wolf rented the 
farm now owned by William Clark, in Pine 
Creek township, on which he remained 
three years. He then purchased his pres- 
ent farm of eighty acres, which has since 
been his home, and where he has been en- 
gaged in general farming and stock raising. 
When purchased the place was unimproved, 
and with characteristic energy he went to 
work to put it in order. All the buildings 
on the place were erected by him, and after 
a lapse of some years, it presented an en- 
tirely different appearance. It is now one 
of the best improved in the township. For 



the past five years he has rented the culti- 
vated portion of his farm, but retaining the 
pasture land, and has given his entire time 
to stock raising. He yet remains on the 
farm. 

Mr. Wolf has taken an active interest 
in educational matters, and has served six 
years as director in his school district. He 
is a stanch Republican and cast his first 
presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln. 
Fraternally he is a member of Post No. 84, 
G. A. R., of Polo. Mrs. Wolf is a member 
of the Pine Creek German Baptist church. 



A RON CASS, deceased, was for years 
one of the most enterprising citizens of 
Rochelle, a man to whom the entire com- 
munity delighted in doing honor. He was 
born in Tompkins county. New York, July 
2, 1833, and was the son of Moses and 
Elizabeth (Mott) Cass, natives of Connect- 
icut, but early settlers of Tompkins county, 
New York. For a number of years Moses 
Cass was engaged in the mercantile business 
in Watkins, New York, in which line he 
met with signal success. He never came 
west, but died in 1856 in Watkins, New 
York. 

In early childhood, Aron Cass accom- 
panied his parents to Watkins and there 
spent his boyhood and youth, completing 
his studies at Starkey Seminary, North 
Hector, New York. As a result of his 
training in that seminary he learned to prize 
the advantages of education above almost 
everything else. On leaving that institu- 
tion he engaged in the manufacture of lum- 
ber in connection with his father and broth- 
ers, but his lungs being weak, he was ad- 
vised by a physician to seek a change of 




ARON CASS. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



^S3 



climate, and accordingly, in 1855, he fol- 
lowed an older brother to Ogle county, Illi- 
nois, locating at Rochelle, where he estab- 
lished himself in the mercantile business, a 
pursuit for which he had inherited a taste. 
He continued in that line until the outbreak 
of the Civil war, at which time he closed 
out his interests. 

On the nth of May, 1869, Mr. Cass 
was united in marriage with Miss Susan M. 
Smith, who was born in Marion township, 
Ogle county, June 23, 1847, and daughter 
of Peter and Sarah (Foster) Smith. (See 
sketch of Peter Smith.) 

Six children came to bless the union of 
Aron and Susan M. Cass: Edward, of whom 
further mention is made in this sketch; Mar- 
garet Austin, wife of W. P. Landon, for- 
merly pastor of the Presbyterian church 
and now a lawyer of Rochelle; Annie Ame- 
lia, who is taking a four-years course in 
Smith College, Northampton, Massachu- 
setts; Ruth Frances, living at home and at- 
tending school; Charlotte May, who died 
at the age of one year; and Willie B., who 
died at the age of ten years. 

From 1876 until 1881, Mr. Cass served 
as a director of the Rochelle National I3ank, 
sharing in its management with his father- 
in-law, Peter Smith. He then re-estab- 
lished himself in business in the dry goods 
trade, and conducted a successful business 
for several years. From time to time he 
was a silent partner in several firms in 
Rochelle, assisting them with his means 
and wise counsels. On retiring from active 
business, he invested his means principally 
in farming lands. He was a good business 
man and was uniformly successful in all his 
undertakings. From 1891 to 1893, he 
served as mayor of Rochelle, and made a 
good executive officer. He did not seek 



the office, and in fact was averse to holding 
office, and in his case it was an exemplifi- 
cation of the office seeking the man and not 
the man the office. 

Mr. Cass prided himself on his vigorous 
health and excellent constitution, but in the 
fall of 1S93 he contracted muscular rheu- 
matism, which caused him some alarm. In 
the latter part of February, 1894, he con- 
sulted Dr. N. S. Davis, one of the best 
physicians and diagnosticians in the coun- 
try, who pronounced him apparently a 
sound man, slightly run down with> stomach 
trouble, which ought to yield to treatment. 
From that time, however, he remained in- 
doors, and for four days previous to his 
death, which occurred March i, 1S94, was 
confined to his bed. The morning of the 
day on which he died found him so much 
better that he was able to walk unassisted 
to an adjoining room. Late in the after- 
noon, however, his condition suddenly 
changed and it was but a few hours before 
he was at rest, his spirit having gone to join 
his Maker. 

Politically Mr. Cass was a Democrat, 
with prohibition tendencies, although most 
liberal in his views. He was an independ- 
ent thinker, while his clear perceptions and 
sound judgment were generally recognized 
and appreciated in all his business connec- 
tions. He possessed a popular reading 
knowledge of law and took great interest in 
points of legal controversy. In striking 
contrast to a mind tempered with a keen 
sense of humor, was a capacity for thought 
which attempted to weigh all things con- 
siderately. His home life was a model one, 
and his pre-eminent characteristic in the 
family circle was lose. He loved his fam- 
ily with all the intense devotion of his na- 
ture, and they in turn loved him. He could 



2 84 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



not do too much for them, and they recip- 
rocated all his service. He was a member 
of the Presbyterian church. 

While his family was to him so much 
and so dear, his goodness of heart extended 
to his fellowmen, and with unassuming 
modesty he performed many acts of mercy, 
which only his Maker and the recording 
angel have knowledge. His favorite motto 
was "With charity for all," and that char- 
ity he endeavored to e.xtend to all. His 
death, therefore, was not alone mourned by 
his famil}' and relatives, but by man}' who 
were recipients of his favors, and, in fact, 
by all who knew him. Recognizing the im- 
possibility that all should be famous, he felt 
assured that in the eyes of an all-wise Judge 
he who performed even the humble duties 
of every-day life would not lose his reward. 
That he performed .well all such duties a 
host of friends who are left behind will 
attest. 

Edward Cass, the eldest son of Aron 
and Susan M. Cass, was born in Rochelle, 
Illinois, August 6, 1870, and died on the 
twenty-eighth anniversary of his birth, Au- 
gust 6, 1S9S. He grew to manhood in his 
native city, and after graduating from the 
high school he took a four years' course, 
including the preparatory year, in the uni- 
versit}- at Lake Forest, Illinois, and then 
spent one year in Amherst College, Massa- 
chusetts, from which he was graduated in 
1893. A three years' course in the Har- 
vard Law School followed, and after gradu- 
ating from that institution he was admitted 
to practice in the courts of Illinois. On the 
first of January, 1897, he began the prac- 
tice of his profession in Chicago, first with 
Green, Honore & Robbins, and later with 
Samuel Lynde. He was a very bright 
young man, and had just completed ar- 



rangements for entering a still more im- 
portant field of labor, when death cut short 
his rapid advancement. Quiet, modest and 
unassuming, he was possessed of unusual 
power of intellect, and his death deprived 
the state of Illinois of one of its bright- 
est young men, and one who doubtless 
would have advanced to the front in his 
profession, to which he gave his best tal- 
ent and thought. In his professional work 
he was very thorough. He had resolved 
to reach the top round, and spared no 
amount of time, expense or labor in obtain- 
ing the best possible mental equipment. In 
the midst of his preparation, while at the 
law school, his father died. This threw 
upon him a multitude of business details and 
responsibilities. Most young men would have 
stopped their studies, but he assumed the 
extra load and pressed steadily on, being a 
student and business man at the same time. 
Likewise he was husband and father to his 
mother and sisters. No outside induce- 
ment, however attractive, nor laborious 
details within his professional work, swerved 
him from his purpose. This patient perse- 
verance, combined with his natural endow- 
ments and good sense, would have brought 
him to the very front in the legal profession. 
Few, even of his intimate acquaintances, 
knew what complete devotion to a lofty pur- 
pose possessed this quiet, modest, polite 
young man. His family life was beautiful, 
and his thoughtfulness for each member of 
the family was most strikingly manifested 
on his death bed. He desired to take his 
father's place in the family and this he did 
to a remarkable degree. The beautiful com- 
panionship between the son and father as 
they walked and talked together will be re- 
membered by many. His father's wishes 
were always a law to him, and the words 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



2S5 



and desires of the father were often spoken 
of by him to his friends. 

When about nineteen years old, Ed- 
ward united with the Presbyterian church, 
and from that time to the day of his death 
he was a steadfast, earnest Christian man, 
a firm believer in the Word of God. He 
not only read but studied his bible. He 
also read and studied church history and re- 
ligious literature, spending his last Sunday 
at home in reading aloud a life of Christ. 
A friend has said of him, " Many were his 
virtues — few his faults." Certainly a noble 
tribute, and one well deserved. 



LEVI M. BELLOWS, one of the sub- 
statial farmers of Eagle Point town- 
ship, and who resides on section 23, has 
been a resident of Ogle county for a little 
more than half a century. He was born in 
Delaware county, New York, December 
25, 1842, and is the son of Hoton and Sar- 
ah (Banker) Bellows, both of whom were 
natives of the same county and state. Ho- 
ton Bellows was born in 1809, and was the 
son of Jotham Bellows, who removed from 
one of the New England states to Dela- 
ware county. New York, at a very early 
day. The family is of English ancestry, 
and were pioneers in New England. Sarah 
Banker was a daughter of Squire Banker, a 
member of the Society of Friends. She 
died in Ogle county about 1850. 

Hoton Bellows, who was a farmer by 
occupation, came to Ogle county in 1848, 
joining here his father's family, who had 
come out a few years previously. He came 
to Chicago by way of the great lakes, and 
by teams from that city to Ogle county, lo- 
cating on section 23, in what is now Eagle 
Point township. He purchased a tract of 



land and opened up a farm. For forty 
years he was a leading citizen of the town- 
ship, a good farmer, a kind neighbor, and 
one ever ready to oblige a friend. His 
death occurred in 1S88, while that of his 
wife occurred December 24, 1844, in the 
forty-first year of her age. To Hoton Bel- 
lows and wife four sons and three daughters 
were born. Mary is now a widow and re- 
sides in Eagle Point township. Relief re- 
sides in Marion county, Kansas. Mrs. 
Sarah E. Hodge is now living in Lawrence, 
Kansas. Benjamin R. settled in Eagle 
Point township, where his death occurred. 
Levi M. is the subject of this sketch. Ori- 
son settled in Carroll county, and later died 
there. Talman C. resides in Buena Vista 
county, Iowa. For his second wife Hoton 
Bellows married Miss Cornelia Decker. 
To them five children were born, four of 
whom are still living: Charles, Emery, Adel- 
bert and Jotham. 

Levi M. Bellows was six years old when 
he came with his parents to Ogle county. 
He here grew to manhood, and in the pub- 
lic schools received but a limited education. 
He remained with his father until he reached 
mature years, when he rented land and en- 
gaged in farming on his o^vn account. He 
was married in Carroll county, Illinois, Feb- 
ruary 20, 1867, to Miss Anis M. Wolcott, a 
native of Green county. New York, and 
daughter of Francis C. and Mary Ann (Rob- 
inson) Wolcott, who removed from New 
York to Ogle county and later to Carroll 
county, Illinois. By this union nine chil- 
dren were born, of whom five are yet liv- 
ing. Francis C. died in early childhood. 
Rose married Harry Stokes, and died in 
August, 1S97, leaving two children, Merna 
Belle and Levi S., who now live with their 
grandparents. Walter B., a young man, is 



286 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



now assisting in operating the home farm. 
Harry R. died February 24, 1899. Hattie, 
a twin sister of Harry, died in infancy. 
Wilson H. is yet at home. Mary A. also 
lives at home. Edith Belle died in child- 
hood. Fanny is a student in the home 
school. 

Immediately after marriage, Mr. and 
Mrs. Bellows commenced their domestic 
life on his father's farm. In the winter fol- 
lowing he purchased eighty acres, which he 
farmed in connection with his father's place. 
He has since added to his original purchase, 
and is now the owner of about three hun- 
dred acres. He has endeavored to keep up 
with the times in the way of improvement, 
putting out fruit and ornamental trees, til- 
ing the place, and building a neat and sub- 
stantial residence, two good barns and other 
outbuildings. In addition to the raising of 
grain, he has engaged to some extent in 
feeding and fattening cattle for the markets, 
usually shipping one or two car loads per 
year and about fifty to one hundred head of 
hogs. He has been fairly successful in life, 
and has no reason to complain. 

The first presidential ballot cast by Mr. 
Bellows was in 1864, when he voted for 
Abraham Lincoln, since which time he has 
given his earnest support to the men and 
measures of the Republican party. He has 
taken quite an interest in local politics, and 
frequently represents the Republicans of his 
township in the various conventions of the 
party. He has served for some years as 
justice of the peace, and being a friend of 
education and the public schools, has served 
as a member of the school board. He is a 
member of the United Brethren church in 
Eagle Point township (the old brick church), 
of which he is one of the trustees. He is 
an active worker in the Sunday-school, and 



served several years as superintendent. 
Mrs. Bellows is also a member of the same 
church, and is interested in its work. Both 
are well-known, especially in the western 
part of Ogle and the eastern part of Carroll 
counties. All who know them hold them in 
the highest respect. 



REV. HOLMES DYSINGER, D.D.. 
pastor of the Lutheran church, at 
Polo, is a well known and popular divine in 
the Lutheran church, with a national repu- 
tation as a minister and a teacher. He 
was born in Mifflintown, Juniata county, 
Pennsylvania, March 26, 1853, and is sec- 
ond in a family of seven children born to 
Joseph and Mary Amelia (Patterson) Dys- 
inger, both of whom are natives of the 
same county and state, and where they yet 
reside. Joseph Dysinger, by trade, is a 
carpenter and builder, an occupation which 
he followed for some years, later following 
farming, a vocation in which he has been 
engaged for about thirty-five years. In 
politics he is a Democrat, and has served 
his fellow citizens in various official posi- 
tions, including assessor, collector and 
school director. Religiously he is a Lu- 
theran, as also his wife. She is a daughter 
of William and Catherine (Echo) Patter- 
son, the former a native of England, a 
blacksmith by trade, who died at the age of 
si.xty-eight years, and the latter a native of 
Lancaster county, Pennsylvania. The pa- 
ternal grandfather, John Dysinger, when a 
young man moved from Dauphin county, 
Pennsylvania, to Juniata county, in the 
same state, and there followed the occupa- 
tion of a farmer. He died at the residence 
of his son, Joseph, with whom he made 
his home for a time before his death. He 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



287 



married Sarah Kauffmann, whose father 
was an Ornish preacher in Pennsylvania, 
and who died at an advanced age. At one 
time John Dj'singer was quite wealthy, but 
lost his fortune. He had three uncles in 
in the Revolutionary v/ar. 

In the public schools of his native coun- 
ty our subject received his primary educa- 
tion, and at the age of seventeen com- 
menced teaching. For three years he 
taught in the country schools and was then 
employed in the schools of Mifflintown, 
where he taught two years. He then en- 
tered Pennsjlvania College, at Gettysburg, 
and after pursuing the regular course, grad- 
uated from that institution in 1878. After 
he received his diploma he taught Latin and 
Greek in the preparatory department of his 
Alma Mater for four years, in the mean- 
time finishing the course and graduating 
from the Lutheran Theological Seminary, 
located at Gettysburg. In 1882 he was in- 
vited to accept a chair in the college at Mt. 
Pleasant, North Carolina, and was a teacher 
in Latin and Greek. Later he was with the 
college at Newberry, South Carolina, where 
he continued five years. He was then 
called to the presidency of Carthage Col- 
lege, Carthage, Illinois, and filled that posi- 
tion for seven years, during which time he 
greatly strengthened the institution. His 
resignation was accepted with reluctance, 
as he had the entire confidence not alone 
of his own church, under whose auspices 
the college was conducted, but by the entire 
community as well. Leaving the college, 
he accepted the call of the Lutheran church 
at Polo, to become its pastor. While 
teaching had been his regular profession, 
for years he had been a regular ordained 
minister of the church, preaching at such 
times as his other duties would admit. He 

31 



is a fluent and eloquent speaker, and is one 
of the most popular pastors that has ever 
served in Polo. The church to which he 
ministers, was organized in 1870, and the 
house of worship erected in 1872. The 
parsonage was built in 1898. 

Mr. Dysinger was married at Blairsville, 
Pennsylvania, September 22, 1886, to Miss 
Ada Frances Ray, a native of that city, and 
daughter of Samuel and Margaret (John- 
son) Ray, the former a native of county 
Armaugh, Ireland. By this union four chil- 
dren have been born — Mary Ray, Cornelia, 
Margaret Eloise and Helen Frances. 

In politics, Mr. Dysinger is thoroughly 
independent, believeing in giving his sup- 
port to the best men regardless of their 
political belief, especially in local affairs. 
Fraternally he is a Mason, holding member- 
ship with the blue lodge at Polo. In every 
enterprise for the best good of his adopted 
city and county, he cheerfully lends his aid 
and influence, and in charitable and moral 
reform, he is always in the lead. 



MAJOR CHARLES NEWCOMER, for 
many years engaged in the banking 
business at Mt. Morris, is personally as 
well known as any man in Ogle county. He 
was born in Washington county, Maryland, 
August 22, 1825, and is of Swiss origin, his 
paternal ancestor, \\'olfgang Newcomer, 
emigrating from Switzerland in 1749, and 
locating in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He 
married an American-born woman, removed 
with her to Lancaster county, Pennsylva- 
nia, and they became the parents of three 
sons, Henry, Christian and Peter, who loca- 
ted in Washington county, Maryland. Henry 
was the grandfather of the Major, who be- 
longs to the fourth generation. His father. 



288 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Samuel Newcomer, was a native of that 
county and state, while his mother, Sarah 
Fridly, was a native of the state of New 
York. They emigrated to Illinois in the 
summer of 1845, the father securing the 
title to three hundred acres of land adjoin- 
ing the village of Mt. Morris. Here the 
father died four years later, the mother sur- 
viving him until January, 1882. They 
were members of the Evangelical Lutheran 
church and took an active part in organizing 
the church and society of that denomina- 
tion in Mt. Morris. 

Major Newcomer came to Ogle county 
with his parents. He was then but twenty 
years of age. The Mexican war, which fol- 
lowed a little later, brought with it the ac- 
quisition of California with its newly dis- 
covered gold fields. Great excitement fol- 
lowed the discovery of gold and a vast emi- 
gration set in towards the gold fields. In 
company with his relatives, Samuel W. 
Chaney, George and Michael Swingley, on 
the 1st of April, 1849, our subject started 
to California with an ox team. St. Joseph, 
Missouri, being the principal outfitting point 
for the overland emigrants, they went to 
that point, secured their outfit for what was 
then known and called ' ' the plains, ' ' crossed 
the Missouri river early in May, and started 
out into an unsettled country, uninhabited 
except by Indians and three government 
lorts garrisoned by United States soldiers — 
Forts Kearney, Laramie and Hall. The 
Mormons, however, had a settlement south 
of the emigrant trail at Salt Lake. The 
Indians were not as a rule hostile, unless 
imposed upon. 

The party to which the major belonged 
traveled and camped alone the greater part 
of the way, frecpiently coming in site of 
Indian camps and villages, and were never 



molested or disturbed by them. They saw 
vast herds of buffalo on the plams, in some in- 
stances numbering thousands in a herd. An- 
telope were plenty, but they did not see any 
deer until they got into the Sierra Nevada 
mountains, where they saw plenty of the 
blatck ailed deer, mountain sheep, and occa- 
sionally a grizzly bear. Traveling with oxen 
was slow and tedious. Meeting a camp of 
Mormon traders at the crossing of Green 
river, in Wyoming, they exchanged their 
outfit and surplus supplies for saddle horses 
and pack mules, and traveling faster, they 
arrived at the mining region on Bear river, 
August I, 1849. Their provisions being 
nearly exhausted, as well as their cash, 
they found it necessary to commence work 
without delay. One dollar per pound was 
the minimum price of supplies. Luxuries, 
such as potatoes, onions, etc., were dearer. 
Picks and shovels were worth one ounce of 
gold ($16.00) each. 

Mining on Bear river was not sufficiently 
remunerative to satisfy the party, so they 
prospected on the Uba, the north fork of the 
American river, but with indifferent success. 
F'inally they succeeded in finding satisfac- 
tory " diggin's " near where the city of Ne- 
vada is now located, and built the first 
cabin in the embryo city. Being moderate- 
ly successful, and well pleased with the out- 
look and surroundings. Major Newcomer 
was making plans for a probably permanent 
abode on the Pacific coast, when the intel- 
ligence of the death of his father reached 
him, entirely changing the course of his after 
life. Returning to his home in the summer 
of 1850, and purchasing the interest of the 
heirs of his father's estate, he became the 
proprietor of the homestead and occupied 
the same until the spring of 1876, when he 
disposed of it. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



2S9 



On the first of August, 1877, in company 
with Dr. Isaac Rice, now deceased, he es- 
tablished the Bank of Mount Morris, becom- 
ing sole proprietor in 18S0, and continuing 
the same until January i, 1899, when he 
sold out to Joseph L. and John H. Rice, 
the former being the son of his former 
partner. 

Major Newcomer was united in marriage 
with Miss Rosalie D. Blanchard, July 13, 
1853. She was a native of Jefferson coun- 
ty. New York, and preceptress of Rock 
River Seminary at the time of her marriage. 
She died at the homestead, November 11, 
1872, leaving three sons — Frank P., at 
present a resident of Texas; Charles E. 
and Lyle C, residents of New Mexico. On 
the 2d of June, 1889, Major Newcomer 
married Miss Maria Hitt, daughter of Rev. 
Thomas Hitt, who was one of the pioneers 
of Ogle county. She was born on the Hitt 
homestead, adjoining the village of Mt. Mor- 
ris, was a student in Rock River Seminary, 
and afterwards continued the study and 
completed a course of music, both vocal 
and instrumental, at a conservatory in 
Washington City. For several years she 
was music teacher in Rock River Seminary, 
as scores of old students from its classic 
halls can testify. 

In public life the Major has been an 
active and prominent factor. In 1853 he 
was appointed and served under Elias 
Baker, as deputy sheriff of the county, and 
in 1855 was elected sheriff without opposi- 
tion. In November, 1861, he was elected 
to represent Ogle county in the constitu- 
tional convention, and upon the adjourn- 
ment of the convention was appointed by 
President Lincoln paymaster in the United 
States army, with the rank of major, and 
was assigned to duty in the military division 



of the Department of the Cumberland, 
with headquarters at Louisville, Kentucky. 
Colonel William Allen, chief paymaster of 
that department, placed him in charge of 
the field payments of the Army of the Cum- 
berland, including the entire forces of Gen- 
erals Sherman and Thomas. His subordi- 
nates numbered forty paymasters and clerks. 
He retained that position until the close of 
the war, when he was mustered out of the 
service and returned home to assume the 
duties of civil life. Since returning home 
for more than twenty-one years he was 
actively engaged in the management of his 
bank. On the ist of October, 1885, he 
was selected by the court to adjust the em- 
barrassed condition of the suspended l>ank 
of Forreston, which he succeeded in doing 
to the satisfaction of the assignor and credit- 
ors. In whatever position he has been 
called upon to fill, every duty has been con- 
scientiously performed. He has always 
had the confidence of the community in 
which he has lived, and all have a good 
word to say of him. 



FRED J. DEUTH, one of Forreston's 
enterprising merchants, owns and man- 
ages a well-stocked hardware establishment. 
He was born in Ost Friesland, Germany, 
October 6, 1852, and in his native land was 
reared and educated. After his school days 
were over he assisted his father in the culti- 
vation of the farm, until 1870, when the fam- 
ily came to America and located in Forres- 
ton township. Ogle county, where the father 
rented a farm. He continued farming in For- 
reston township during the remainder of his 
life, dying in May, 1897. His remains were 
interre in White Oak cemetery, Forreston. 
His wife, who was a Miss Tina K. Schurman, 



290 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



was a daughter of Kreine and Margaret (De 
Vreis) Schurman. Mr. and Mrs. Deuth 
were the parents of the following named 
children: George J., living on a farm in 
Stephenson county; Iv. J., living in Minne- 
sota; Fred J., our subject; Jacob J., a 
farmer of Forreston township; and August, 
a farmer of Lincoln township. 

Fred J. Deuth, in 1877, married Miss 
Anna H. Abels, a daughter of Herman 
Abels, a farmer of Lincoln township. Her 
parents, Herman and Margaret Abels, came 
to America in 1855, and settled near Ger- 
man Valley. To Mr. and Mrs. Deuth nine 
children have been born, — Tina F., Her- 
man, Johnnie F., Annie Carrie, Frederick 
George, Martha M., Bertha M., Esther 
Lillian and Emma Augusta. Of these Anna 
is deceased. 

On a farm in Forreston township Mr. 
Deuth remained until the fall of 1883, when 
he came to the city of Forreston and en- 
gaged in the hardware business, in company 
with a Mr. Marr, purchasing the establish- 
ment of Middlekauff Bros. , and the firm be- 
came Marr & Deuth. This partnership 
lasted three years, terminating on account 
of the death of Mr. Marr. The firm then 
became Deuth, Hemphill & Co., which 
lasted for nine years. It was then Deuth 
& Abels for one year, then Death & Reb- 
man, three years, and since December 13, 
1897, Mr. Deuth has been sole proprietor. 
He carries a full line of stoves, builders' 
hardware, agricultural implements, etc. The 
store is the oldest in Forreston and was es- 
tablished in 1866. 

In politics Mr. Deuth is a Republican, 
and cast his first presidential vote for R. B. 
Hayes, in 1876. He has been quite active 
in political and local affairs, and for four- 
teen years served as road commissioner, and 



also as a member of the board of education 
for nine years. The family are members of 
the Presbyterian church. He is a very pop- 
ular, affable, friendly, bright business man, 
and is recognized as a leader of the com- 
munity. A self-made man in the true sense 
of the term, he has worked his way steadily 
upwards until he is now the possessor of a 
comfortable competence. No man in For- 
reston has more friends or is held in higher 
respect than the subject of this sketch. 



JOHN AND JAMES NICHOLS are num- 
bered among the most enterprising, 
energetic and industrious agriculturists of 
Eagle Point township, where they own and 
successfully operate a fine farm of two hun- 
dred and eighty acres on section 14. They 
were born upon that place, December 31, 
1 86 1. 

Their father, John Nichols, was born in 
the town of Andes, Delaware county, New 
York, in 1818, and was a son of William 
Nichols, a native of Martha's Vineyard, 
Massachusetts, and a representative of an 
old English family, his ancestors being 
among the Pilgrim Fathers who settled in 
that state early in the seventeenth century. 
William Nichols was a sailor and followed 
the sea for a number of years. He was 
married at Martha's Vineyard and later re- 
moved to Delaware county, New York, 
where he was one of the pioneers. There 
John Nichols, Sr. , was reared and educated, 
receiving fair school advantages. In 1836, 
when a young man of eighteen years, he 
came with his father's family to Illinois and 
located in what is now Eagle Point town- 
ship. Ogle county. Here they took up a 
claim, built a residence and turned their at- 
tention to the development and cultivation 




r/ 



JAMES NICHOLS. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



-91 



of a farm in the midst of the wilderness, the 
grandfather spending the last years of his 
life here. John Nichols, Sr. , remained with 
his parents until after he attained his ma- 
jority. He entered a tract of eighty acres 
where the family now resides and soon con- 
verted the wild land into a good and well 
cultivated farm, improved with substantial 
buildings. Being a successful farmer, he 
bought more land, becoming the owner of 
a tine place of one hundred and twenty 
acres. He was an efficient member of the 
county board of supervisors for a number of 
years, and held other positions of honor and 
trust, the duties of which he most capably 
and satisfactorily performed. He died upon 
his farm May 28, 1880, honored and re- 
spected by all who knew him. In Ogle 
county he had married Miss Christiana 
Byers, who was born and reared in Dela- 
ware county. New York, a daughter of 
James and Jane (Scott) Byers, both natives 
of Scotland. Mrs. Nichols survived her 
husband for a number of years, passing 
away April 27, 1897, and both were laid to 
rest in the United Brethren cemetery at the 
brick church in Eagle Point township. They 
were formerly members of that church, 
were among the original members and 
helped to build the church, but later in life 
united with the Presbyterian church at Polo, 
Mrs. Nichols having been reared in that 
faith. To this worthy couple were born si.\ 
children, namely: Elizabeth, wife of George 
Adee, who is now living retired in Sycamore, 
Illinois; Russell B., a farmer of Eagle Point 
township: Nettie, wife of Barnabus Wright, 
of Polo; Olive, who was formerly a teacher 
but is now keeping house for her brothers; 
and John and James, of this review. 

As soon as old enough to be of any as- 
sistance, John and James Nichols began to 



aid their father in the operation of the home 
farm, and since the father's death have pur- 
chased the interests of the other heirs in the 
place, which they are now so successfully 
carrying on. By subsequent purchase they 
have added to it and now have a fine farm 
of two hundred and eighty acres under a 
high state of cultivation and well improved. 
They are thorough and systematic farmers 
and as stock feeders have also met with ex- 
cellent success, fattening for market about 
three car loads of cattle and one hundred 
and twenty hogs annuall\'. They ship their 
own stock and iind the business quite 
profitable. 

Since casting their first presidential bal- 
lot for James G. Blaine, in [884, the Nich- 
ols brothers have been ardent supporters of 
the Republican party and have never missed 
a presidential or state election. James takes 
quite an active interest in local politics, has 
been a delegate to numerous county and 
congressional conventions of his part}-, was 
assessor of his township lor five consecutive 
years, and for several j-ears has also been 
president of the township board of trustees 
of the public schools. He is a member of 
Buffalo Grove Garrison, No. 3, K. of G., of 
Polo, and both he and John are members of 
the Eagle Point Mutual Fire Insurance 
Company. They are well-known and high- 
ly respected, and have been prominently 
identified with the upbuilding and prosper- 
ity of the community where they have spent 
their entire lives, as upright and honorable 
business men who command the confidence 
of all with whom they come in contact. . 



CAPTAIN JOSEPH M. MYERS is un- 
questionably one of the strongest and 
most influential business men whose liveshave 



294 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



become an essential part of the history of For- 
reston and Ogle county. Born on the 2nd 
of December, 1S37, in Mount Morris town- 
ship, and reared in Ogle county, his inter- 
est in its growth and advancement have al- 
ways been uppermost in his thoughts, and 
every effort tending toward its improvement, 
strained to the utmost. He is one of the 
eight children of Benjamin and Mary (Roth- 
ruck) Myers, the former a native of Penn- 
sylvania, and the latter of Washington 
county, Maryland, he and his twin brother, 
now deceased, coming first in order of birth. 
Mary is the wife of John H. Mullen, a resi- 
dent of Columbus Junction, Iowa. John is 
a resident of Mount Morris township. Ruth 
Ann, the third child, is deceased. Samuel 
is a resident of Leaf River. Sarah J. is the 
widow of Norton S. Goodrich and lives in 
Winnebago, Illinois. The youngest child, 
David, died in infancy. 

Captain Myers' parents were among the 
first settlers of Ogle county, having come 
to Illinois in 1S37. His father was a stone- 
cutter and worked at his trade after reach- 
ing Ogle county. When Captain Myers was 
a child of four years, his parents moved 
near Adeline, Maryland township, where they 
lived until his mother's death, in 1851. 
After this sad event the Captain was obliged 
to earn his own living, which he did at farm 
work, attending school during the winter 
seasons. In August, 1861, he enlisted in 
Company H, Thirty-fourth Illinois Infantry. 
He took an active part in several notable 
engagements, among which were Shiloh, 
Corinth, Stone River, Liberty Gap and 
Missionary Ridge. He also took part in 
various battles of the Atlanta campaign, in 
Sherman's march to the sea and the cam- 
paign in the Carolinas. At Kenesaw Moun- 
tain he received a slight wound. Captain 



Myers received an honorable discharge, 
in Chicago, having been mustered out of 
service at Louisville, Kentucky, July 18, 
1865. 

After the close of the war. Captain 
Myers went to Forreston and engaged in the 
livery business until May, 1874. He then 
clerked in a general store until April, 1876, 
and from that time until 1S77 he was pro- 
prietor of the Commercial hotel. Selling 
out the hotel business, he accepted a posi- 
tion with the Illinois Central Railroad Com- 
pany as baggageman at Forreston, which 
position he held until his appointment as 
postmaster, discharging his duties in the 
latter capacity very creditably until the ex- 
piration of his term, April I, 1893. Cap- 
tain Myers then established an insurance 
agency, to which he now gives his time and 
attention, and which has become representa- 
tive in the volume of business written for. 
On the 1st of November, 1898, he was again 
appointed postmaster of Forreston, an in- 
dication of his popularit}' and the esteem in 
which he is held by the community. 

In the year 1871, Captain Myers was 
united in marriage to Barbara A. Geeting, 
a native of Germantown, Ohio. She is a 
daughter of George and Nancy (Wagner) 
Geeting, who settled in Ogle county in 
1854. To this union two children were 
born: George, a telegraph operator at 
Harper, and F^lorence, residing at home. 
Our subject is a Knight of the Globe and a 
member of the Grand Army of the Republic. 
He has been constable for four years, tax 
collector for two years, assessor three years, 
member of the board of education three 
years, town council three years and is now 
holding the office of village treasurer and 
notary public; was president of the old set- 
tlers association for the year 1S95. He has 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



295 



frequently been a delegate to county, con- 
gressional and senatorial conventions, and 
has been township and county committee- 
man in public affairs. Captain Myers is a 
stanch Republican, voting at every presi- 
dental election since casting his first ballot 
for Abraham Lincoln, at Mt. Morris. He 
is a man of sterling integrity, always courte- 
ous and affable, has the confidence of the 
community, and the regard of the citizens 
of Forreston. 



EDMOND D. HUGGANS is one of the 
active and enterprising farmers of Ogle 
county. He resides on a well improved 
farm of three hundred and twenty acres. on 
section 20, about two miles southwest of 
Polo, and has been a resident of the county 
since the fall of 1854. His father, David 
G. Huggans, was a native of Green county. 
New York, and was the son of William 
Huggans, of Irish parents, who married a 
Scotch lady. William Huggans was an 
early settler of Green county, New York, 
and near the Catskill mountains, in the 
heavy wilderness, cleared a farm and pro- 
vided himself and family a home. The 
last years of his life were passed in that 
place. 

David G. Huggans spent his boyhood 
and youth in his native county, receiving in 
its primitive schools a limited education. 
He there married Miss Polly Griffin, a daugh- 
ter of Daniel Griffin, who was likewise an 
early settler of Green county. She was 
born in Delaware county, in the same state. 
After marriage David G. Huggans located 
in Delaware county, where he engaged in 
farming for some years, and also in -the 
manufacture of lumber. In 1S54 he came 
to Illinois, first locating in Lee county, and 



later moving to Whiteside county. In 
1 86 1 he came to Ogle county and pur- 
chased land in what is now Woosung town- 
ship. He subsequently moved to Labette 
county, Kansas, where he lived four years, 
and then returned to Ogle county, where 
his death occurred in iSgi. His wife died 
while they were residing in Lee county, 
soon after removing west. They had a 
family of eight children, of whom six sons 
yet survive. Daniel Uriah grew to man- 
hood, married and settled in Ogle county, 
but died in 1894. Kimber resides in La- 
bette county, Kansas. James G. is a farmer 
of Jones county, Iowa. John P. is residing 
in the same county. Richard W. is a farmer 
of Buffalo township. Edmond D. is the 
subject of this sketch. William S. is also 
a farmer of Buffalo township. 

Edmond D. Huggans came to Ogle 
county when thirteen years old. After the 
death of their mother the brothers bought a 
farm of two hundred and forty acres in part- 
nership, adjoining the farm of their father. 
They lived and worked in partnership for 
several years, later purchasing more land. 
With his brother William he bought out 
the other brothers, and the two continued 
together for some years, owning two farms 
comprising five hundred and sixty acres. 
They also engaged in buying and shipping 
stock together for about fifteen years, meet- 
ing with fair success. They then dissolved 
partnership, Edmond D. taking the farm 
where he now resides. Since the dissolu- 
tion of co-partnership he has confined his 
operations to general farming and stock 
raising, and is considered one of the best 
farmers in the section where he resides. 

Mr. Huggans was married in Ogle coun- 
ty, December 29, 1892, to Miss Jennie Max- 
well, a native of Whiteside county, Illinois, 



296 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and daughter of William Maxwell, a native 
of Scotland, but an early settler of that 
county, where he yet resides and is living a 
retired life. By this union one son has 
been born, Allen Maxwell. 

Mr. Huggans was reared a Democrat 
and cast his first vote for General Hancock 
in 1S80. Always a strong advocate of tem- 
perance, and firmly believing that from the 
old parties no permanent laws can ever be 
obtained, or any earnest efforts put forth 
for the suppression of intemperance, he has 
for the past eight years voted with the Pro- 
hibition party. Fraternally, he is a Mason, 
a member of the blue lodge and chapter at 
Polo and the commandery at Dixon. As a 
citizen he is loyal to the best interests of his 
adopted county and state, and has given the 
best years of his life to the permanent im- 
provement of the count}'. He has been an 
industrious man and the results are shown 
in the fine farm that he owns and the per- 
sonal property that he possesses. All who 
know him hold him in hitrh esteem. 



GEORGE W. JONES is the owner of 
three valuable and well-improved 
farms, and in his home place, which is 
pleasantly located two and a quarter miles 
south of Stillman Valley, he has four hun- 
dred acres of rich and arable land. He is 
numbered among the self-made men of the 
county, his accumulations being the result 
of his own industry, perseverance and good 
management, and the exercise of a natur- 
ally good judgment, both in regard to agri- 
cultural pursuits and business matters. He 
came to Ogle county in June, 1850, and 
since that time this has been the field of 
his operations, and the center of his inter- 
ests and hopes. 



Mr. Jones was born in Harlem township, 
Delaware county, Ohio, October 13, 1824, 
and is a son of Samuel Jones, whose birth 
occurred in Luzerne county, Pennsylvania, 
1801. The grandfather, Samuel Jones, Sr. , 
was a native of Wales and a pioneer of 
Luzerne county, where he cleared and im- 
proved a farm, following farming there 
until 18 19, when he removed to Delaware 
county, Ohio, and in Harlem township 
again developed a farm from wild land. 
Samuel Jones, Jr., was a young man of 
eighteen years when the family removed to 
the Buckeye state, and was of great assist- 
ance to his father in opening up the farm. 
Here he married Miss Maria Cockrell, a 
native of Virginia and a daughter of Edward 
and Elizabeth (Dawson) Cockrell, pioneers 
of Delaware county. For several years 
after his marriage Mr. Jones carried on 
operations as a farmer in Ohio, but in 1849 
came to Ogle county and took up three 
hundred and twenty acres of land with 
Mexican war land warrants. In Pine Rock 
township he built a residence and developed 
a farm of one hundred and sixty acres, giv- 
ing to his children the other one hundred 
and sixty-acre tract. He died' upon that 
farm July 3, 1889, at the advanced age of 
eighty-eight years, honored and respected 
by all who knew him. His first wife de- 
parted this life in 1845, and his second wife 
only survived him three months and eight 
days. 

George W. Jones, our subject, is the 
oldest child of the first union, which was 
blessed by eleven children, four sons and 
seven daughters, all of whom reached years 
of maturity with the exception of one 
daughter. By the last marriage there were 
two sons and three daughters. Oliver 
Perry, next younger than our subject, was 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



297 



a soldier of the Mexican war and died in 
Pueblo; John Butler is living retired in 
Minnesota; Lorinda married William Howe 
and died in Delaware county, Ohio; Eliza- 
beth is the present wife of Mr. Howe, who 
still resides in that county; Maria Jane mar- 
ried George Lilley and is now deceased; 
Katie Ann died in Delaware county during 
childhood; Elmira is the wile of Lawrence 
Wren, of Ghana, Ogle county, Illinois; 
Emma is the wife of Nehemiah Woodruff, 
of Shamburg, Page county, Iowa; Lucy Ann 
married William Gifford, who died in the 
service of his country during the Rebellion, 
and she later married Samuel G. Morrison, 
but is now deceased, and Samuel B. is a 
resident of Delmar Junction, Iowa. The 
children of the second marriage were Will- 
iam H., who died after reaching manhood; 
Alice, wife of O. W. Campbell, of Ashton, 
Lee county, Iowa; Mary, who died in child- 
hood; Irene M., widow of John Giles and a 
resident of Texas, and Philip P., a resident 
of East Chain Lakes, Martin county, Min- 
nesota. 

In the county of his nativity, George W. 
Jones was reared and educated, and was 
there married November 23, 1848, the lady 
of his choice being Miss Jane Woodruff, 
whose brother married Mr. Jones' sister. 
She was born in Pennsylvania, but when a 
child of three years was taken to Ohio, 
where she was reared. Four children have 
been born to our subject and his wife. Ann 
Mary is now the wife of George Smith, a 
substantial farmer of Marion township. Ogle 
county; Elizabeth is the wife of D. A. 
Harlaman, of the same township; Emma T. 
is the wife of Walter Stagle, a farmer of 
Marion township; Oliver Perry married and 
died at the age of forty-four years, leaving 
a large family. 

32 



In 1850 Mr. Jones came to Ogle county, 
making the journey in a home-made cov- 
ered wagon with a blue box, and arriving 
at his destination in June, after twenty-two 
days spent upon the road, and they brought 
with them their few household effects and 
wearing apparel, all home-made. They 
camped out at night. Mr. Jones left Ohio 
with thirty-six dollars and arrived here with 
thirty-one, which, with his team and equip- 
ments, constituted his entire worldly pos- 
sessions. He bought a cow and a stove, 
and began life here in earnest, working by 
the day for others for the first year. He 
then operated rented land for several years, 
his first purchase consisting of a tract of 
eighty acres of raw land in Pine Rock town- 
ship, which he broke and cultivated, and to 
which he later added another eighty adjoin- 
ing, making it his home until 1882, when 
he sold the place for ten thousand eight 
hundred and eighty dollars. He then 
bought eighty acres in the same school dis- 
trict, but sold it two years later and pur- 
chased one hundred and sixty acres in 
Greene county, Iowa, which he disposed of 
six years later at a good profit. He also 
bought one hundred and sixty acres in three 
pieces in Pine Rock township, this count}', 
which he sold at the end of that year, and 
at the same time owned considerable land 
around Ghana. He is st'.ll the owner of 
three fine farms, aggregating five hundred 
and fifty-eight acres. This includes the 
home farm previously mentioned, filty-two 
acres north of Stillman Valley, sixty-six 
acres in Pine Rock township, and forty 
acres at Black Walnut Grove, and is valued 
at over forty thousand dollars. 

Mr. Jones supported Zachary Taylor, 
Winfield Scott and John C. Fremont for 
the presidency, and each succeeding candi- 



298 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



date of the Republican party, and he has 
ever taken an active and commendable in- 
terest in public affairs. He has held a 
number of official positions of honor and 
trust, the duties of which he most capably 
and satisfactorily discharged. These in- 
clude the offices of justice of the peace, 
township collector and trustee, and was 
also a member of the school board. He 
and his estimable wife are earnest and con- 
sistent members of the Methodist Episcopal 
church, and are held in high regard by all 
who have the pleasure of their acquaint- 
ance. Mr. George W. Jones has just 
passed his seventy-fourth year; his sight is 
good, and his business qualifications are 
remarkably good for his age. He has just 
deeded each of his four children land in 
Ogle county, valued at two thousand five 
hundred dollars. 



LEWIS PETRIE, a well-known farmer 
of Lincoln township, resides on a well 
improved farm of one hundred and fifty 
acres on section 15, and which is one mile 
north of Haldane. He is a native of the 
county, born in Maryland township. May 7, 
1849. His father, Jonas Petrie, was a 
native of Washington county, Maryland, 
born April i, 1809, while his grandfather, 
Philip Petrie, probably of the same county, 
was of German parentage. The latter was 
a commissioned officer in the Revolutionary 
army, and the sword that he carried in the 
service is now in possession of our subject. 
His death occurred in 1854, in Maryland 
township. Ogle county. 

Jonas Petrie was reared in his native 
county and there married Miss Emily 
Weaver, also born in Washington county, 
Maryland, and they became the parents of 



eight children, all of whom grew to mature 
years, and but one now deceased. Frances 
married Daniel Stoffer, and they now reside 
in Adeline, Ogle county; David resides in 
Black Hawk county, Iowa; Jonas is living 
in Union county, Iowa; Jacob came west, 
but married and remained on the old home 
farm in Maryland township. Ogle county, 
Illinois. He is the deceased one. Upton 
resides in Iowa Falls, Iowa; Freeland re- 
sides in Clinton, Iowa; Mary C. is the wife 
of Samuel Bovey, of Black Hawk county, 
Iowa; Lewis, of this review, completes the 
family. 

In early manhood Jonas Petrie was en- 
gaged in freighting over the mountains of 
his native state. The favorable reports 
from old friends and neighbors who had 
come to Ogle county induced him to come 
also. He arrived in this county with his 
family in May, 1840, and first located in 
Mt. Morris township. He only remained 
there a year or two, however, and then 
entered two hundred and forty acres of land 
in Maryland township, to which he removed. 
His farm was within two miles of the pres- 
ent village of Adeline. He there reared 
his family, and later moved to Forreston, 
where he lived a retired life, dying there 
July 23, 1880. His wife survived him but 
a few months, passing away in November 
of the same year. They were laid to rest 
in the cemetery at Adeline. They were 
highly esteenied people. By his friends 
and neighbors he was elected to various 
local offices of honor and trust. He was 
a member and active worker in the United 
Brethren church, as was also his wife. 

On the old home farm in Maryland town- 
ship, Lewis Petrie grew to manhood, and in 
the district schools received his education. 
He remained at home, assisting his father 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



299 



in the management of the farm until the 
latter's removal to Forreston. He was mar- 
ried in Stephenson county, Illinois, August 
24, 1869, to Miss Margaret Ellen Heitman, 
who was born near Hagerstown, Washing- 
ton county, Maryland, and daughter of 
Joseph Napoleon Heitman, a native of Ger- 
many, who removed to the United States 
when a young man, locating in Maryland, 
where he followed his trade of stone mason. 
He was married in Martinsburg, Virginia, to 
Miss Anna Fry, a native of what is now 
West Virginia, After his marriage he came 
to Stephenson county, Illinois, arriving in 
that county in 1S52. To Mr. and Mrs. 
Petrie five children have been born. Anna 
May died at the age of six years. Charles 
A. will graduate in the Northwestern Dental 
College in the class of 1899; he has taught 
seven terms of school in his home district. 
Carrie A. is the wife of Oliver Long, a 
farmer of Lincoln township. Daisy A. and 
Howard A. are yet at home, and are stu- 
dents in the home school. 

After his marriage, Mr. Petrie located 
on the old home farm, which he operated a 
number of years, and in the meantime pur- 
chased the farm where he now resides and 
to which he removed with his family in 1 8S2. 
Since his removal to his present farm he has 
made many improvements on the place, in- 
cluding the erection of a large and neat resi- 
dence, large barn and various outbuildings, 
and the planting of orchard and shade trees. 
He now has one of the best farms in the 
township. 

Politically, Mr. Petrie is a Democrat, the 
principles of which party he has advocated 
during his whole life. His first presidential 
vote was cast for General Hancock. For 
about twenty years he has served as school 
director, and for a large part of the time as 



president of the board. No other office has 
he cared for, and he only would serve as 
school director from the fact that he took 
great interest in the public schools. A life- 
long resident of the county, he has always 
had its best interests at heart, and has done 
what he could to subserve those interests. 



WILLIAM STOCKING, .senior member 
of the firm of William Stocking & 
Company, bankers of Rochelle, is well- 
known throughout Ogle and adjoining coun- 
ties as a man of strict honor and integrity, 
possessing fine business qualifications, one 
having the best interests of his adopted city 
and county at heart, and who has doubtless 
done as much as any other one man to ad- 
vance those interests. He was born in Ash- 
field, Franklin county, Massachusetts, Jan- 
uary 3, 1827, and is the son of Herod and 
Lydia (Ames) Stocking, both of whom were 
natives of the same county and state, the 
former born in April, 1795. By occupation 
the father was a farmer and followed that 
vocation during his entire life. In 1S32 he 
moved with his family to Cuyahoga county, 
Ohio, and seven years later to Ogle coun- 
ty, Illinois, settling in Monroe township, 
where he took up a claim of one hundred 
and twenty acres of government land and 
at once began the development of a fine 
farm. On that farm he spent the greater 
portion of his life, dying in 1888, at the age 
of ninety-three years. A few years prior 
to his death he retired from active life, pass- 
ing away at the residence of his son. Al- 
ways an active man, he retained the full 
possession of his faculties till the last, and 
outlived his second wife. During the sec- 
ond war with Great Britain he served his 
country as one of its brave defenders. Po- 



300 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



litically he was a stanch Democrat. Herod 
Stocking was the son of Abraham and Aba- 
gail (Smith) Stocking, both of whom were 
probably born in Massachusetts, the former 
living to the age of ninety years, and the 
latter until eighty-five years old. Of the 
ten children born to Herod and Lydia Stock- 
ing, two only are now living, Lewis, of 
Lynnville township, and our subject. 

William Stocking was five years old 
when he accompanied his parents to Cuya- 
hoga county, Ohio, and but twelve years 
old when he arrived with them in Ogle 
county, and here his entire life has since 
been spent, a period of three score years. 
He well remembers the trip from Ohio to 
Illinois, coming through as they did with 
teams. The country was new and it was 
quite interesting to the boy. His educa- 
tion, which was begun in the common 
schools of Ohio, was completed in the prim- 
itive schools of Ogle county, attending as 
he did generally during the winter months. 
But in those primitive schools he laid the 
foundation of a practical business life which 
has been successful, and which has brought 
him honors and the esteem of his fellow men. 

Continuing witli his father, and assisting 
in the cultivation of the home farm, until 
he was twenty-one years old, he then took 
up one hundred and sixty acres of land from 
the government and the first year broke 
twenty acres, thus beginning life for himself. 
His first crop of wheat he hauled to Mil- 
ford with an o.\ team and sold for forty-five 
cents per bushel. Success seemed to crown 
his efforts from the start, and he is now the 
owner of one thousand acres in one body, 
lying in White Rock and Lynnville town- 
ships. For some years he was extensively 
engaged in buying and selling stock, and in 
that line of business was likewise successful. 



In 1872 he became interested in the Ro- 
chelle National Bank, and was connected 
with that institution until iSSi, when he 
sold his stock and severed his connection 
with the bank. He then bought a control- 
ling interest in the First National Bank of 
Rochelle, which was later changed into a 
private bank and business continued under 
the firm name of William Stocking & Co. 
The bank is recognized as one of the sound 
financial institutions of the county, and has 
a large line of deposits. 

In Monroe township, Ogle county, June 
27, 1S47, Mr. Stocking was united in mar- 
riage with Miss Lydia Crill, a native of 
Oneida county. New York, and daughter 
of Henry Crill, one of the pioneer settlers 
of Monroe township. Four children were 
born of this union. Horace married Alma 
Weeks, and is now living on the home farm. 
They have four children. Dexter died at 
the age of three years. Aurora married 
George Terry, a manufacturer of Chicago, 
in which city they reside. George E. is 
connected with the bank in Rochelle. He 
married Helene S. Stanton, by whom he has 
three children. 

In politics Mr. Stocking is a Republican 
and for years has been active in the councils 
of the party. He has been likewise active 
in county and municipal affairs, and while 
residing in White Rock township served as 
supervisor three terms, and also five terms 
in the same office in Flagg township, since 
removing to Rochelle. On the board he 
was one of the most active and influential 
members. As a member of the city council 
of Rochelle, he was chairman of the com- 
mittee on water works and was chiefly in- 
strumental in securing so fine a plant, and 
took part in putting in the same. Since 
1881 he has served as mayor of the city, a 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



^oi 



term of office which has probably no parallel 
in the state in the same office. He has been 
of great assistance in getting the city of Ro- 
chelle free from bonded mdebtedness. That 
his services have been appreciated, a refer- 
ence to the length of time which he has 
served is all that need be said. 



SOLISTINE GUIO, is a well known citi- 
zen of Ogle county, residing about four 
miles north of Polo, on section 32, Lincoln 
township, where he owns and operates a 
well-improved farm of one hundred and si.xty 
acres, and also owns eighty acres additional 
in the same township. He was born in 
Summit county, Ohio, near Akron, October 
14, 1S35. His father, Peter Guio, was a 
native of Canada, of French extraction, but 
who emigrated to Ohio when a young man, 
locating on a farm in Summit coimty. He 
there married Miss Josephine Moushang, a 
French lady, who was reared in Summit 
county, Ohio. They became the parents of 
four sons and five daughters, all of whom 
grew to mature years. Of the family, two 
sons and two daughters are now living. 
The living are Solistine, of this sketch; 
Peter, who resides near Salt Lake City, 
Utah, where he owns a ranch, and also 
keeps a public house and stage station; 
Levina, widow of J. B. Lamb, of Chicago; 
and Mrs. George Culver, of Kalamazoo, 
Michigan. The mother of these children 
died in Ohio in 1845, and about four years 
later the father removed with the family to 
Branch county, Michigan, and settled near 
Gilead, where he engaged in farming and 
reared the family. He died there about 
1854. 

The subject of this sketch spent his boy- 
hood and youth in Ohio and Michigan, being 



about fourteen years old when he accom- 
panied his father to the latter state. He 
had good common school advantages in his 
native state, and also attended the common 
schools of Michigan for a short time. 
When about seventeen years old he com- 
menced life for himself, working on a farm. 
He continued at that work in Michigan un- 
til the spring of i860, when he went to 
Kansas with the idea of making that his 
home. However, he tiid not long remain 
there, but in the fall of the same year came 
to Ogle county and commenced working by 
the month. After being thus employed 
about one year, he rented a farm and began 
farming for himself. He later bought a 
threshing machine, and during the seasons 
for thirty-five years was engaged in operat- 
ing the same, in all probability being the 
oldest operator of a threshing machine in 
Ogle county. 

Mr. Guio was married in Ogle county 
February 27, 1S6S, to Miss Mary Pyfer, 
born in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, 
and daughter of George Pyfer, also a native 
of the same county and state, who there 
married Mary Sweigaurd, likewise a native 
of Pennsylvania. He moved with his fam- 
ily to Ogle county, Illinois, in 1857, and 
here Mrs. Guio grew to womanhood and 
was mostly educated. To Mr. and Mrs. 
Guio nine children have been born. Ro- 
sella, living with her parents. Louisa is 
the wife of Eugene Reed, a farmer of Buf- 
falo township. Sarah is the wife of James 
Mayburn, of Ogle county, and they have 
one child, Nellie, a bright little girl of three 
summers. George, who is assisting in car- 
rying on the home farm. Henry, Oliver, 
Amos, Lillie and Fanny, complete the 
family. 

After their marriage, j\lr. and Mrs. Guio 



^02 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



commenced their domestic life on a farm 
near where they now reside. His first pur- 
chase of land was a tract of eighty acres, 
and later purchasing one hundred and sixty 
acres adjoining, he has now a fine farm of 
two hundred and forty acres, all of which is 
under cultivation. Coining to this county 
a poor man, by his own industry, assisted by 
his estimable wife, he has accumulated a 
fine property and is now one of the sub- 
stantial citizens of the county. 

Politically Mr. Guio gives his support to 
the Republican party on national issues, 
but in local elections he votes independent- 
ly, casting his ballot for the men he con- 
siders best qualified to fill the offices for 
which they aspire. For nineteen years he 
has served as a member of the school board, 
a part of which time he was president of the 
board. He has also served as road com- 
missioner. His wife and daughter, Rosella, 
are members of the Methodist Episcopal 
church. The entire family are highly es- 
teemed wherever known. 



ABRAHAM FELKER WEAVER, a well- 
known farmer and highly esteemed 
citizen of Rockville township, Ogle county, 
was born in Washington county, Maryland, 
December 2, 1838. His father, Samuel 
Weaver, was born in Huntingdon county, 
Pennsylvania, June 27, 1799, and was mar- 
ried November 14, 1824, to Elizabeth Fel- 
ker, whose birth occurred in Washington 
county, Maryland, June 14, 1805. He 
died August 14, 1839, and she passed away 
June 4, 1875. I'l their family were seven 
children, namely: John, born June 24, 
1825, died July 14, 1825; Catherine Wilt, 
born June 23, 1826, married Daniel Binkley, 
of Washington county, Maryland; George, 



born November 15, 1S29, died October i, 
1884; Elizabeth, born July 20, 1832, died 
February 27, 1837; Mary A., born Novem- 
ber 24, 1834, died June 18, 183S; Louisa, 
born September 5, 1836, died October 25, 
1894; and Abraham F. completes the 
family. 

Our subject was only eight months old 
at the time of his father's death, and was 
reared by his mother in his native county, 
where he acquired his primary education. 
In July, 1S57, at the age of nineteen years, 
he came alone to Ogle county, where his 
brother had located two years before, and 
the first summer he worked for various 
persons in the county. For one year he 
was in the employ of Charles Samis, and 
for si.\ months was with Daniel Zellars. He 
then purchased a half interest in a thresh- 
ing maching, and in the fall of i860, when 
the threshing season was over, he hired out 
to Benjamin Swingley for three months. 
The following year he was again engaged in 
threshing, and at the end of the season en- 
tered the Mt. Morris Seminary, where he 
pursued his studies for three months. He 
and his cousin, David Felker, then bought a 
new machine, and in the spring of 1863 
Mr. Weaver rented a small farm which he 
operated until harvest time, when he re- 
sumed threshing while making his home 
with his uncle Abraham Felker. With his 
thresher he traveled extensively through 
the southern part of the state. At the end 
of this season he returned to Maryland, 
where he spent four or five months. In 
1862 he made his first purchase of land, 
consisting of eighty acres, in Forreston town- 
ship, which he sold about 1867. He then 
purchased alarm in 1870, with like improve- 
ments, and in 1876 moved on the same. 

On the 28th of April, 1864, Mr. Weav- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



303 



er enlisted in Company I, One Hundred and 
Fortieth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, under 
Captain James W. Cartwright and Colonel 
Lorenzo H. Whitney, and was mustered in 
at Dixon. After the regiment was equipped 
at Springfield, they proceeded to Cairo and 
on to Memphis, Tennessee, and to Lafay- 
ette. Mr. Weaver's company, together 
with Companies I and F, were detailed to 
guard a bridge five miles from Lafayette, 
which the rebels burned at every opportu- 
nity. Our subject was wounded September 
5, 1864, in a skirmish with Forrest's men 
and is now a pensioner of the government. 
They returned to Memphis, Tennessee, 
where they remained for two or three weeks. 
While there the time for which they enlisted 
expired, bat they were held for nearly three 
months; a part of which time he was on the 
sick list. They were mustered out of serv- 
ice at Camp Fry, at or near Chicago, Illinois. 

Mr. Weaver married Miss Jennie W. 
Briggs, who was born March 30, 1851, a 
daughter of Joseph and Louisa E. (Case) 
Briggs. Her father was born June 16, 
1806, and died July 11, 1856, and her 
mother was born August 31, 18 10, and died 
May 10, 1891. To Mr. and Mrs. "Weaver 
were born four children: Grace E., born 
January 7, 1877; Mabel L., September 5, 
1879; Charles H., July 3, 1882; and Lil- 
lian E., May 17, 1887. All are living with 
the exception of the youngest, who died 
February 13, 1888. Our subject has also 
been called upon to mourn the loss of his 
estimable wife, who passed away October 
30, 1892. 

Politically Mr. Weaver is a silver Demo- 
crat, and he has most capably and satis- 
factorily served as school director for fifteen 
years and as road commissioner for three 
years. 



ADDISON COFFMAN, one of the repre- 
sentative and prominent agriculturists 
of Ogle county, operates a fine farm of 
two hundred and eighty-four acres on sec- 
tion 12, Maryland township, and also has 
another well improved and valuable farm of 
two hundred and sixty acres in the same 
township, which he rents. He is one of 
Ogle county's honored sons, his birth occur- 
ring on the farm where he now resides, Au- 
gust 24, 1843. 

His father, Samuel W. Coffman, was a 
native of Washington county, Maryland, 
born in 181 i, and was a son of John Coff- 
man, who was born on the Atlantic ocean, 
while his parents were removing from their 
old home in Germany to the United States. 
They were among the pioneers of Washing- 
ton county, Maryland. There Samuel W. 
Coffman grew to manhood and married 
Catherine Doney, a native of the same 
county and a daughter of Timothy Downey, 
also an early settler of the county. Mr. 
Coffman engaged in farming there until 
1 840, when he came to Ogle county, Illinois, 
in company with two other families. He 
entered a tract of two hundred and eighty- 
four acres in Maryland township, on which 
his son now resides, erected thereon a log 
house and began to improve and cultivate 
his land. He also entered other tracts, but 
later sold these. In subsequent years his 
first home here was replaced by a 
more commodious and modern residence, 
and the wild land on which he located was 
converted into a fine farm. His last years 
were spent in retirement in the village of 
Bailey ville, Illinois, where he died in 1887. 
His first wife had died in 1876 and he later 
married again. 

By the first union there were ten chil- 
dren, six sons and four daughters, of whom 



304 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



two sons and four daughters reached man 
and womanhood, namely: John D., who is 
living retired in Chicago; Mrs. Naomi Dunn, 
of Freeport, Illinois; Catherine, deceased 
wife of Valentine Wallace; Susan, wife of 
S. W. Griffith, of Marshalltown, Iowa; and 
Matilda, a resident of Freeport. 

The subject of this review was reared on 
the home farm and had very limited school 
advantages. He remained with his father 
until reaching manhood and then took 
charge of the homestead, which he later 
purchased of the other heirs. His whole 
life has been devoted to agricultural pur- 
suits and he has met with marked success, 
his landed possessions now aggregating five 
hundred and forty-four acres of fertile and 
valuable land, which he has placed under a 
high state of cultivation and well improved. 
Upon the home farm he has erected a large 
barn with a basement. 

In Maryland township, June 29, 1879, 
was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Coffman 
and Miss Sarah Wagner, a native of Ogle 
county and a daughter of Jonathan Wagner, 
who settled here as early as 1840. 
By this union three children were born: 
Samuel and Jonathan Emory, who assists 
their father in the operation of the farm, 
and Eusebia, who died at the age of four 
years. The wife and mother departed this 
life in 18S5, and Mr. Coffman was again 
married in Maryland township, December 
5, 1887, his second union being with Mrs. 
Ennna Stover, a native of the township and 
sister of his first wife. In November, 187 1, 
she gave her hand in marriage to John 
Stover, and they went to New York city 
on their wedding trip. Returning they 
stopped in Chicago and left that city on the 
night of the great fire. Mr. Stover located 
in Sangamon county, Illinois, where he en- 



gaged in farming until his death, which oc- 
curred in July, 1875. He left two daugh- 
ters, Marian and May, who are both well 
educated and the former is now a stenog- 
rapher in Freeport. There is one son by 
the second marriage: Frank F. 

Since casting his first presidential vote 
for Abraham Lincoln, in 1864, Mr. Coff- 
man has been a stalwart supporter of the 
Republican party, but he has never cared 
for office, though he has served for three 
years as commissioner of highways. He 
is one of the leading and popular citizens of 
his community and wherever known he is 
held in high regard. 



WILLIAM M. CLARK, a practical and 
successful farmer, residing on section 
30, Pine Creek township, is a native of 
Huntingdon county, Pennsylvania, born No- 
vember 14, 1832, and is the son of Isaac 
and Nancy (Campbell) Clark, both natives 
of County Antrim, Ireland. Isaac Clark 
came to the United States in 1832 and lo- 
cated in Huntingdon county, Pennsylvania, 
where he remained until 1850 and then re- 
moved to Jefferson county, in the same 
state, where he spent the remainder of his 
life. He was a good and faithful citizen of 
his adopted country and state and filled a 
number of local offices, serving as collector, 
constable and school director. He died 
when about seventy-one years of age. His 
wife survived him and died in 1895, when 
eighty-two years of age. They were the 
parents of eleven children, ten of whom 
grew to maturity. William M. is the sub- 
ject of this sketch. Thomas remained in 
Pennsylvania until 1887, and then came to 
Ogle county, where he remained two years, 
going from here to the state of Washington, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



305 



which is his present home. Elizabeth is 
the wife of George A. Currier, of Pennsyl- 
vania. Mary is the wife of Samuel Mont- 
gomery. They left Jefferson county, Penn- 
sylvania, came to Ogle county, where they 
remained ten years, then went to Wright 
county, Iowa, where they now reside. Sar- 
ah married David Currier, of Clarion coun- 
ty, Pennsylvania. Nancy married Peter 
Butler, now of Jefferson county, Pennsyl- 
vania. Samuel, when less than eighteen 
years of age, enlisted in the One Hundred 
and Third Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, 
was captured at Plymouth, North Carolina, 
spent some time in Andersonville prison, 
from which he was taken to Charleston, 
South Carolina, and from there to Florence, 
South Carolina, where his death occurred 
about two weeks before peace was declared. 
James remained in Jefferson county, Penn- 
sylvania, until about 1874, when he went 
to California, and from there to Oregon. 
Later he went to British Columbia, where 
he accumulated a fortune, after which he 
returned to his old home in Jefferson county 
until iSSo, when he went to the state of 
Washington, and is now living on Puget 
Sound. Issac died at the age of twenty- 
seven years. John died when six years old. 
Elizabeth married George A. Currier and 
resides in Pennsylvania. 

The subject of this sketch spent his boy- 
hood and jouth in Jefferson county, Penn- 
sylvania. When thirteen years old he was 
apprenticed to learn the shoemaker's trade, 
but after serving si.\ months, left his master 
and returned home. He was then hired out 
by his father for five dollars per month to 
work on a farm. When sixteen he was ap- 
prenticed to a blacksmith to learn his trade. 
When his employer broke up some months 

after, he abandoned the idea of learning the 
33 



trade, and for some three years was em- 
ployed in and about the iron works. From 
that time until 1854 he was engaged in lum- 
bering, at which he cleared about five hun- 
dred dollars, two hundred of which he gave 
to his father. With the remainder he went 
to California and located in Plumas county, 
and for two years was engaged in mining for 
others. He then went to Sierra county, 
where he engaged in mining on his own ac- 
count. He was there at the time the vig- 
ilance committee was organized to rid the 
the county of rascally officials. He re- 
mained in California until November, i860, 
engaged in mining with fair success. He 
returned home by way of the Isthmus of 
Panama. In February, i86i, he came to 
Ogle county on business, and liking the 
country, he purchased one hundred and 
sixty acres of land in Pine Creek township, 
which he rented out until after his marriage. 
On the 1 2th of July, 1866, Mr. Clark 
was united in marriage with Miss Amanda 
Yates, daughter of Charles and Catherine 
(Ninick) Yates, the former a native of Eng- 
land, and the latter of German parentage. 
Mrs. Clark was born in Frederick county, 
Maryland, and when seven years old came 
with her mother to Ogle county, her father 
having died when she was but three years of 
age. She was born March 12, 1839, and 
was one of a family of nine children. Of 
these John resided in Ogle county until his 
death, about 1893. Lucinda married Em- 
ery Foxwell, a well-known banker of Balti- 
more, but is now deceased. George died in 
Ogle county June 7, 1878. Elizabeth mar- 
ried Benjamin Cummings, for years a resi- 
dent of Ogle county, but who died in Kan- 
sas. She now resides in Vinton, Iowa. 
Mary E. died in childhood. Isaac died at 
the age of seventeen. Rebecca married 



3o6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Joseph Mumma, of Ogle county. Edward, 
when sixteen years old, went to the state 
of Washington, where he now resides, en- 
gaged in farming. 

After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Clark 
lived for a year and a half upon the first 
farm that he purchased. In 1868, they re- 
moved to their present place of residence, 
which then consisted of one hundred acres. 
He has since added to his possessions until 
he has now a section of good land, which 
he has leased for a number of years. Much 
of his time has been j^iven to stock raisinj,', 
it being his aim to use up all the grain and 
hay raised on his farms. He usually feeds 
from two to five car loads of cattle and hogs 
per year. He has always been a stanch 
Democrat, and never hesitates to advocate 
the principles of his party. Fraternally he 
is a Master Mason, and a member of the 
Independent Order of Odd Fellows, having 
joined the latter order in 1856. He is a 
member of both subordinate lodge and the 
encampment. As a farmer, he has proved 
a success, keeping up with the times in the 
various improvements made, and entering 
heartily into his work. In regard to the 
future he is an agnostic in belief. 



CHARLES FISHER.— Wherever there 
is pioneer work to be done men of 
energy and ability are required, and success 
or failure depends upon the degree of those 
qualities that is possessed. In wresting the 
land of Ogle county from its native wilder- 
ness; in fitting it for the habitation of men; 
in developing the natural resources of the 
community, few if any have done more than 
Mr. Fisher and it is mete and proper that 
for the arduous and important labor he 
performed he should receive due reward. 



Here he has made his home since the 8th 
of June, 1839, and for many years he was 
actively identified with the agricultural in- 
terests of Byron township, but is now living 
retired in the village of Byron in the pleas- 
urable enjoyment of his accumulations. 

Mr. Fisher was born in the town of 
Westboro, Worcester county, Massachu- 
setts, July 2 1, 181S. The early home of his 
ancestors was in England, but the family 
was one of the first established in the old 
Bay state. His grandfather, Samuel Fisher, 
and his father, Nahum Fisher, were both 
born on the old homestead in Worcester 
county, the latter March 15, 17S8. On at- 
taining man's estate he became prominently 
identified with public affairs, and for several 
terms most ably and satisfactorily repre- 
sented his district in the state legislature. 
He also served as justice of the peace for 
many years, and his decisions were rendered 
without fear or favor. Daring the war of 
18 12 he was one of the gallant defenders of 
his country, and afterward received a pen- 
sion in recognition of his services. He re- 
ceived a good education, was engaged in 
surveying for a time, and was an excellent 
business man of known reliability. He 
married Miss Betsy Harrington, also a na- 
tive of Westboro, Worcester county, born 
May 15, 1787, and after her death, which 
occurred October 2, 1S51, he was again 
married. His death occurred in his native 
place March 27, 1865. 

By the first marriage there were ten 
children, six sons and four daughters, all of 
whom grew to man and womanhood, but 
only three sons are now living: Charles, of 
this review; Samuel D., a resident of West- 
boro, Massachusetts; and Joseph, who lived 
retired at Montpelier, Vermont, for many 
years, where he was a neighbor and ac 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



307 



quintance of Admiral Dewey. He died 
December 22, 1898. 

Reared in Westboro, Charles Fisher ob- 
tained an excellent education, being a 
student in the Leicester and Westminster 
Seminaries and also the Baptist Academy 
at Worcester. At the age of eighteen he 
commenced teaching and for two winters 
successfully followed that profession in his 
native state. In May, 1839, he started for 
Illinois in company with a brother and a 
sister, Mrs. Parsons and her children, driv- 
ing two teams. The trip was a long and 
tedious one and they did not arrive at their 
destination until June 8. Though not a 
professor of religion at that time, Mr. Fisher 
observed every Sabbath during the journey. 
In Ogle county he joined his brother-in-law, 
Luke Parsons, who had located here three 
years previovsly. Our subject purchased 
a claim of two hundred and forty acres in 
Byron township, of which fifteen acres had 
been cleared, but later sold that place and 
purchased Mr. Parsons' farm after the death 
of his brother-in-law. He then devoted his 
energies to its further improvement and 
cultivation, and as prosperity crowned his 
efforts he was subsequently able to purchase 
an adjoining tract of sixty acres, making in 
all a fine and valuable farm of two hundred 
and ten acres near the present village of 
Byron, in Bjron township. Being the 
owner of the horses with which he had 
driven from his eastern home, he was able 
to be of use to the community in which he 
located by engaging in teaming between 
this county and Chicago, hauling lumber, 
and other supplies for the settlers. In 
this way he not ofily aided those around 
him but also added not a little to his in- 
come. 

On the loth of November, 1850, in By- 



ron township, occurred the marriage of Mr. 
Fisher and Miss Harriet N. Salisbury, who 
was born in Townsend, Windham count)', 
Vermont, August 2, 1827, a daughter of 
Barnard and Arethusa (Duncan) Salisbury, 
also natives of the Green Mountain state. 
The father was born in Brattleboro, March 
30, 1786, and was descended from a family 
of German origin, which at an early day 
was founded in England, and from there its 
representatives came to America, settling 
in New England. Mr. Salisbury was a 
pioneer of Townsend, Vermont, where he 
ever afterward made his home, successfully 
engaged in agricultural pursuits. On re- 
turning from a visit to our subject and his 
wife he was taken ill with cholera at Pulas- 
ki, New York, and died July 4, 1854. His 
wife passed away December 27, 1832. In 
the family of this worthy couple were ten 
children, of whom nine reached years of 
maturity, but only Mrs. Fisher, Mrs. 
Arethusa Mervvin, of New Haven, Connecti- 
cut, and Henry Salisbury, of Schenectady, 
New York, are now living. Coming west 
in 1849 to visit a sister, she accepted a po- 
sition as teacher in Ogle county, and while 
thus engaged she became acquainted with 
her future husband. Theirs was the first 
marriage celebrated in the Byron church. 
The children born of this union are Harriet 
E., wife of J. B. Tinker, a business man of 
Mason City, Iowa; Mary J., wife of George 
Rood, of Byron, Ogle county; Alice A., wife 
of Charles B. Rosier, a carpenter of Byron, 
Illinois; Charles M., a business man of Ma- 
son City, Iowa; Arthur C, a lawyer by pro- 
fession, who is now serving as lieutenant- 
colonel of the Third Illinois Volunteer In- 
fantry at Porto Rica; Elsa L., at home; and 
Nahum H., a business man of Janesville, 
Wisconsin. 



30S 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RPXORD. 



Mr. and Mrs. Fisher began their do- 
mestic life on his farm in the new residence 
which had just been completed, but has 
since been enlarged and remodeled. Good 
barns and other outbuildings were also 
erected, and under the skillful management 
of our subject the farm was made to yield 
bountiful harvests in return for the care and 
labor bestowed upon it. For thirty-seven 
years he successfully engaged in its opera- 
tion, but in 1887 rented it and removed 
to the village of Byron, where he erected 
a neat residence and has since lived re- 
tired. 

In political sentiment Mr. Fisher was 
originally a Whig, and cast his first vote for 
William Henry Harrison in 1840, but in 
1856 he joined the newly organized Repub- 
lican party, and of later years has been a 
supporter of the men and measures of the 
Prohibition party, as he is a strong temper- 
ance man. He served as commissioner of 
highways for about fourteen years, and for 
several years was a most active and promi- 
nent member of the school board, doing 
much to advance the grade of schools in 
this section. He provided his own children 
with good educational advantages, all being 
graduates of the graded schools of Byron, 
while some of the sons attended Wheaton 
and Mt. Morris Colleges, and the younger 
members were students in the Rockford 
Business College. All became successful 
and popular teachers with the exception of 
the oldest, who never followed the profes- 
sion. For over half a century the parents 
have been worthy members of the Congre- 
gational Church at Byron, and their lives 
have ever been in harmony with its teach- 
ings. Mr. Fisher has served as deacon since 
1 88 I , and as a public-spirited and progressive 
citizen he gives his support to all enter- 



prises which he believes calculated to ad- 
vance the moral, educational or material 
welfare of his town and county. 



DAVID H. LAMONT, dealer in hard- 
ware, stoves and tinware, Holcomb, 
is one of the leading merchants of the 
place, an enterprising citizen, and one who 
enjoys the respect and confidence of the en- 
tire community in which he lives. He is a 
native of Jo Daviess county, Illinois, born 
September 27, 1863, and is the son of Hans 
and Alice (Lamont) Lamont. Although of 
the same name, the parents were not re- 
lated. They were both natives of Ireland, 
and became the parents of nine children, 
three of whom are now deceased. The liv- 
ing are Mary, Sarah, John, Stewart, Alice 
and David. The deceased are William, 
Thomas and Albert. In 1848, a year that 
Irishmen have cause to well remember, he 
came to the United States and for ten years 
was in the employ of the Baltimore & Ohio 
railroad, in the meantime accumulating a 
little money with which to begin life in 
earnest. In 1858 he came west and located 
in Jo Daviess county, Illinois, where he con- 
tinues to reside. He was a good man and 
made friends wherever he lived. 

In his native county our subject grew to 
manhood and was educated in the public 
schools. At the age of seventeen he com- 
menced to learn the tinner's trade with his 
brother John, and has since continued to 
follow the trade with a reasonable degree of 
success and satisfaction. In iSgohe started 
a tin and hardware store in Stillman Valley, 
which he continued to run for three years, 
but believing there was a better opening in 
Holcomb, he removed to the latter place, 
where he now carries a line line of hard- 




DAVID H. LAMONT. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



1 1 



ware, stoves and tinware, and has built up 
an excellent trade. 

On the 19th of February, 1896, Mr. 
Lamont was united in marriage with Miss 
Dora A. Gates, a native of Ogle county, 
and a daughter of Jacob Gates, who is now 
deceased, but who was an early settler of 
that county, and a man greatly esteemed 
wherever known. 

In politics Mr. Lamont is an unquali- 
fied member of the Republican party, a 
party with which he has been identified 
since attaining his majority. Soon after 
his removal to Holcomb he was appointed 
postmaster of the place, an office which he 
has since continued to hold to the satis- 
faction of the patrons of the office. He is 
at present a member of the school board at 
Holcomb, giving of his time freely to ad- 
vance the interests of its public schools. 
Fraternally he is a member of the Knights 
of the Globe. Religiously he is a Baptist, 
and in the work of the church he takes an 
active interest, and is at present superin- 
tendent of the Sunday school. He makes 
a good superintendent, and the school has 
flourished under his charge. As a business 
man he attends strictly to business, and is 
ever ready to encourage any enterprise that 
he believes will best conduce the interests 
of his adopted city and county. He enjoys 
the respect and confidence of the entire 
community in which he lives. 



BENJAMIN D. SEIBERT, deceased, 
though not numbered among the 
pioneers of Ogle county, was yet an early 
settler, and a man who attained promi- 
nence in the industrial affairs of the county, 
and was numbered among its most enter- 
prising and prosperous citizens. Like many 



of the best citizens of the county he was a 
native of Washington county, Maryland, 
born in Hagerstown, April 9, 1816. He 
was the son of John Seibert, also a native 
of the same county and state, and who was 
by occupation a farmer. The father never 
came west, l)ut spent his entire life in his 
native state. 

In his native county our subject grew to 
manhood and there received a common 
school education. The knowledgje obtained 
in the school room was supplemented by 
that gained in the school of experience, by 
contact with his fellowmen. He was always 
observing, and with an eye to the main 
chance, he was quite successful in whatever 
he undertook. In 1858 he came to Ogle 
county and located in Mt. Mcjrris township, 
about four miles north of the village, where 
he purchased three hundred acres of good 
land and engaged in agricultural pursuits. 
From time to time he added to his posses- 
sions until at the time of his death he 
was the owner of over one thousand acres 
of excellent farming land. 

Mr. Seibert was united in marriage with 
Miss Hannah Thompson, a native of Can- 
ada, and daughter of Henry and Sarah B. 
(Straw) Thompson, the former born in 
Connecticut in 1791, and the latter in New 
Hampshire in 1800. Her father died in 
Canada in 1847, while her mother survived 
him many years, dying at the residence of 
Mrs. Seiber, December 29, 1878. They 
were both members of the Methodist Epis- 
copal church. To Mr. and Mrs. Seibert 
three sons were born, all of whom are yet 
living. John V., born March 17, 1870, 
married Florence Wolfe, and they have 
one child, also named Florence. They re- 
side in Mt. Morris. Benjamin D., born 
March 20, 1872, resides in Mt. Morris. 



312 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Alfred T. , born September i, 1874, is at- 
tending the law department of the Illinois 
University, in Chicago. 

While Mr. Seibert was the owner of 
several fine farms in Ogle county, he gave 
his time principally to the real estate and 
loan business. He had considerable Chi- 
cago property and much farming land 
throughout northern Illinois. A brother, 
Dr. John Seibert, was a well-known physi- 
cian in Chicago before the great fire in that 
citv. He also practiced medicine in Mil- 
waukee for about ten years. He was a ripe 
scholar, a graduate of the University of 
Pennsylvania. During his life he amassed 
considerable property in his adopted city 
of Chicago. He died in that city October 
9, 1896. 

After a long and useful life, Mr. Seibert 
passed to his reward, April 9, 18S9. His 
wife died April 7, 1S95. Both were devout 
Christian people, he a member of the Ger- 
man Baptist church, and she of the Method- 
ist Episcopal. For many years she was 
president of the Women's Christian Tem- 
perance Union of Mt. Morris, and in both 
temperance and church work was quite 
active. In politics he was a Democrat. 
Both enjoyed the love and esteem of a large 
circle of friends, and their death was sin- 
cerely mourned. 



GI'lORGE BRAND is now retired from 
the labors of a long and active life 
and is spending his declining days in the 
midst or ease and plenty at his comfortable 
home in Polo. For many years he was en- 
gaged in agricultural pursuits, and his posi- 
tion financially is the result of his own un- 
aided industry, coupled with the sound com- 



mon sense and excellent business capacity 
with which nature endowed him. 

Mr. Brand was born near Utica, New 
York, October 12, 1828, and is a represent- 
ative of a good old Scotch family, his par- 
ents being Jaraes and Jenette (Ferris) Brand, 
natives of Dumfrieshire, Scotland. The fa- 
ther was born in the village of Ecclessechan, 
January 16, 1799, and was a cousin of 
Thomas Carlyle, a native of the same vil- 
lage. The grandfather, William Brand, was 
a man of strong religious convictions and 
was one of the organizers and buildings of 
the first church in Ecclessechan. He spent 
his entire life in Scotland, and when a young 
man followed the weaver's trade. He was 
a son of Robert Brand, of whom little is 
known at the present time. 

At the age of fourteen years, James 
Brand, our subject's father, was apprenticed 
to the carpenter's trade, at which he worked 
until he attained his majority, and then 
went to Newfoundland, sojourning there for 
eighteen months. On his return to Scotland, 
he was married in 1822 to Jenette Farries, 
who was born in Ecclessechan, March 
10, 1799, a daughter of George and Lucy 
Farries, who in later years crossed the Atlan- 
tic to Prince Edwards Island, where they 
spent their last days. They came to Utica, 
New York, in 18S0. Mr. and Mrs. Brand 
became the parents of ten children, namely: 
William and Lucy, both born in Ecclesse- 
chan; George, born in Utica, New York; 
James, born in Toronto, Canada; Jenette, 
John (deceased) and Robert, all born in 
Canada; and Henry, Mary and Anna, born 
after the family came to Ogle county, Illi- 
nois. After their marriage the parents con- 
tinued to reside in their native village until 
1828, when they sailed from Greenock, 
Scotland, bound for America, but were 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



313 



becalmed two weeks on the coast of 
Ireland, finally landing in New York city 
after six weeks spent upon the water. The 
family first located at Utica, New York, 
where they made their home until 1830, and 
then removed to Toronto, Canada, spending 
one year at that place. The father then 
purchased a farm twenty miles north of the 
city, and in the midst of the almost unbroken 
forest they lived for some years. It was 
during this time that the McKenzie rebellion 
occurred, with which he was a sympathizer. 
While living there he worked at his trade, 
as a shipbuilder, on the lakes. Selling his 
land in Canada in 1840, he came to Ogle 
county, Illinois, and located on a farm 
northwest of Polo, in Brookville township, 
where he was actively engaged in farming 
until 1852. He died in April, 1873, and his 
wife March 13, 1871, honored and respected 
by all who knew them for their sterling 
worth and many excellencies of character. 
George Brand had little opportunity of 
attending school up to the time the family 
left Canada, but he made the best of his 
advantages after coming to Illinois, and is a 
well-informed man. He remained with his 
father until twenty-three years of age, and 
then purchased eighty acres of land, for 
which he went partly in debt. During the 
busy season he operated a corn sheller and 
threshing machine and continued in that 
vocation for thirty-four consecutive years. 
It is needless to say that he soon lifted the 
debt on his first purchase, and from time to 
time he bought more land until he owned 
two fine farms, one of one hundred and 
twenty acres and the other of one hundred 
acres. These he sold in 1875 and 1876, 
and purchased two farms a short distance 
north of Polo, aggregating two hundred and 
twenty-nine acres. He successfully engaged 



in general farming and stock raising until 
1888, when he retired from active life and 
removed to Polo, where he is now enjojing 
a well-earned rest. 

At Freeport, Illinois, March 21, 1854, 
Mr. I3rand was united in marriage with Miss 
Leonora Sanburn. Her paternal grand- 
father, Jonathan Sanburn, was probably a 
native of New Hampshire, and descended 
from John or William Sanburn, who, with 
their grandfather. Rev. Stephen Bachelder, 
came to this country in 1630, from Holland, 
whither they had Hed from England because 
of religious persecution. They were sons 
of John Sanburn, of England. John P. 
Sanburn, Mrs. Brand's father, was born in 
New Hampshire, in 1797, and in early life 
removed to Montreal and later to Toronto, 
Canada, whence he subsequently moved to 
Ogle county, Illinois, in 1839, and bought 
a farm of two hundred and fifty acres near 
Buffalo Grove. Here he died in 1872. In 
York township, York county, Canada, he 
married Miss Susan Johnson, who was born 
there in 1801, and died in 1866. Her 
father, Abraham Johnson, was born near 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, about 1772, and 
died about 1867-8. Throughout life he 
followed the occupation of a farmer. Dur- 
ing the war of 1812 he moved to Canada, as 
he was a British sympathizer, his parents 
having been Tories during the Revolution- 
ary war. He first located in Nova Scotia, 
but later made his home near Toronto. He 
married a Miss Fisher and to them were 
born thirteen children, of whom six are now 
living, and of these Mrs. Brand is the third 
in order of birth. 

The children born to Mr. and Mrs. 
Brand are as follows: Lester A., who is 
engaged in the grocer}' business with Cyrus 
Nicodemus, in Polo, married Mary Wolf, ol 



314 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



Brookville, Ogle county, and they have two 
children, Alpha and Iva; Mary died at the 
age of nine months; George Mortimer, a bag- 
gage clerk at the Union depot, St. Paul, 
Minnesota, married Annie Rates, and they 
have two children, Milton and Leonora; 
John James, who is employed in a shoe 
factory in Rockford, Illinois, first married 
Ella Hanna, by whom he has one son, 
George, and for his second wife married 
Emma Hawes; Hiram Douglas, a success- 
ful dentist of Tacoma, Washington, married 
Ellen Lemon and they have two children, 
Ellen and Iva; Robert Miles, a promising 
young attorney of Chicago, married Luella 
Gibson; Kate A. is the wife of Sherman 
Donaldson, a farmer living near Polo, and 
they have one son, George; and Ambrose 
Ale.xander, who married Ellen Rumell, is a 
dentist of Chadwick, Carroll county, Illi- 
nois. 

In his political views, Mr. Brand is an 
independent Democrat, and for fifteen years 
he most acceptably served as school director 
in his district. He is a prominent member 
of the Masonic fraternity, belonging to the 
blue lodge and chapter in Polo and the com- 
mandery in Dixon. He is a pleasant, 
genial gentleman, of high social qualities 
and has an extensive circle of friends and 
acquaintances in Ogle county, who esteem 
him highly for his genuine worth. 



AUSTIN WRIGHT SPOOR, deceased, 
was for many years a well known citi- 
zen of Ogle county, having many friends, 
and enjoying the respect and esteem of all 
with whom he was brought in contact. He 
was born in Clarence Hollow, Erie county. 
New York, August i<j, 1837, a" J was the 
son of Orsemus and Sophia (Cole) Spoor, 



both of whom were natives of New York, 
the former born September 12, 1802. He 
was the son of William and Christine Spoor, 
the former born January 20, 1769, and the 
latter July 30, 1774. 

Orsemus Spoor was reared in his native 
state, and there married Sophia Cole. In 
1840, he came west with his wife and fami- 
ly, locating first in Buffalo Grove, Illinois, 
but in the spring of 1841 removing to By- 
ron, Ogle county, where in partnership 
with William Wilkinson, he erected the 
first grist mill built in the northern part of 
the county. He died, however, in the fall 
following, leaving a widow with a family of 
si.x children to care for. In addition to his 
Ogle county interests he had some property 
in Chicago, but not knowing its location 
his widow and children lost track of it and 
never acquired rights in it. After surviving 
her husband eleven years, his widow was 
called to her reward, dying in 1852. 

The subject of this sketch was but three 
years old when he accompanied his parents 
to Ogle county, and but four years old when 
his father died. He remained with his 
mother until twelve years old when he went 
to East Troy, Wisconsin, to make his home 
with an uncle, Sylvanus Spoor. After re- 
maining about three years in the family of 
his uncle, he felt an earnest desire to return 
home, fearing that something was wrong. 
On his way back he stopped over night at 
the house of an acquaintance, where he 
learned from acquaintances retnrning from 
his mother's funeral that she was dead. 

Deciding on remaining in Byron, Mr. 
Spoor made his home with his brother, who 
was engaged in the hotel business, and for 
a time assisted him in the work, and later 
was his brother's partner for about two 
years. He then engaged in carrying the 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



315 



mail between Byron and Rockford for one 
year. The following year he drove the 
stage between Rockford and Dixon, and 
was then engaged in farm work for two 
years. Following this he carried mail be- 
tween Byron and Stillman Valley, and be- 
tween Kishwaukee and Rockford for four 
years. 

The war for the union being in prog- 
ress, Mr. Spoor determined to assist in main- 
taining the union, and accordingly in July, 
1862, he enlisted in Company B, Ninety- 
second Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and was 
mustered into the service September 4, fol- 
lowing. For the first twelve months he 
was on detached duty, driving an ambulance 
wagon, after which he was assigned to duty 
at the headquarters of General Kilpatrick 
as veterinary surgeon. The war closing, 
he was mustered out of service June 22, 
1865, at Concord, North Carolina. 

Returning to his home, in 1866, Mr. 
Spoor secured a position as traveling sales- 
man for a Chicago house, and for several 
years was upon the road. On the 23d of 
September, 1869, at Polo, Illinois, he was 
united in marriage to Miss Anna Brand, a 
native of Polo, and daughter of James and 
Janet (Farries) Grand, both of whom were 
natives of Scotland. James Brand was 
born in the village of Ecclessechan, Dum- 
friesshire, Scotland, January 16, 1799, and 
was a second cousin to the renowned Thom- 
as Carlyle, who was born in the same vil- 
lage. At the age of fourteen he was ap- 
prenticed to learn the carpenter's trade. 
After serving his time he came to America, 
where he remained about eighteen months, 
working as a journeyman, then returned to 
Scotland, and in 1822 was united in mar- 
riage with Janet Farries. After his mar- 
riage he remained in Scotland until 1827, 
34 



when he again came to the United States, 
sailing from Greenock and landing in New 
York, after a voyage of six weeks. For two 
weeks he was becalmed in mid-ocean. With 
his family, he first made his home in New 
Hartford, near Utica, New York, where he 
was engaged in building power looms in 
cotton factories. In 1830 he removed to 
Toronto, Canada, where he lived one year 
and then bought a farm twenty miles north 
of that place, and was there during the Ca- 
nadian rebellion, in which he took no active 
part, though his sympathies were with those 
in rebellion. Selling his farm, in 1840, he 
came to Ogle county and settled on a farm 
northwest of Polo, in Brookville township. 
After some twelve years of active farm life 
in Illinois, Mr. Brand lived in ease and re- 
tirement until called to the upper and better 
world, his death occurring April 5, 1S73. 
In politics he was a Democrat and for years 
served as school treasurer and director. He 
was a member of the Old School Presby- 
terian church, and was very strict in his 
family. James Brand was a son of Will- 
iam Brand, one of the founders of the 
first church in the village of Ecclessechan, a 
weaver by trade, and who died in his na- 
tive town. He was the son of Robert 
Brand. Janet Farries was a daughter of 
George and Lucy Farries, her father being 
a farmer by occupation, and who emigrated 
to Prince Edward island, where his death 
occurred. 

To James Brand and wife ten children 
were born. William and Lucy, the latter 
being the wife of W. A. Hatfield, were born 
in Scotland. George was born in New York. 
James, Jr., Janet (widow of Benjamin 
Walkie,) John and Robert born in Canada. 
Mary, now Mrs. John Elward, and Anna, 
now Mrs. Spoor, were born in Illinois. 



3i6 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



To our subject and wife two sons were 
born, Harry and Albert, both of whom assist 
the mother in conducting the hotel. The 
latter was married October 12, 1898, to 
Miss Mary Agnes Perrine, daughter of John 
Perrine, of Oregon. The sons, it may truly 
be said, were born to hotel life, having given 
their time to little else since their age would 
permit active work in any line. They are 
accommodating young men, and their mother 
thoroughly understands the wants of the 
traveling public, and each try to make life 
pleasant to those who make the Spoor House 
their temporary abode. A more homelike 
house cannot be found, while the table is 
well supplied with all the delicacies of the 
season. 

After his marriage Mr. Spoor opened a 
grocery and confectionery store in Polo, 
which he conducted for two years, when he 
sold out, and the following year was with 
the Elward Harvester Company. He was 
ne.xt engaged in the produce business with 
Charles F. Barber, continuing in that line 
until 1879, when he moved to Oregon, 
leased the American House for five years 
and conducted the same with signal ability. 
He then leased the Sinissippi House four 
years, but in the spring of 1888 purchased 
the American House, niade many substan- 
tial improvements in the same, refurnished 
it and renamed it the Spoor House. He 
conducted the house in first-class style un- 
til his death May 28, 1894. In politics Mr. 
Spoor was a Democrat, and for a time 
served as an alderman from his ward, but 
would not accept any other office, prefer- 
ring to give his time and attention to his 
business interests. In 1878 he united with 
the Episcopal church and continued a faith- 
ful member during the remainder of his life. 
Fraternally he was a member of the Ma- 



sonic order, blue lodge and chapter. 
Knights of the Globe and Grand Army of 
the Republic. A worthy citizen, a kind 
and loving husband and father, his death 
was sincerely mourned by all who knew 
him in this life. Like her husband, Mrs. 
Spoor is also a member of the Episcopal 
church. She is greatly esteemed by all 
and her friends are many, not only among 
those among whom she has spent her en- 
tire life, but by all who have accepted her 
hospitality. 



DANIEL H. STAUFFER, one of the 
progressive farmers of Ogle county, 
owns and operates a fine farm on section 19, 
Pine Creek township. He was born in 
Stark county, Ohio, February 4, 1853, and 
is the son of John E. and Rebecca (Haight) 
Stauffer, the former being a native of Penn- 
sylvania, but who is now a resident of Polo, 
Illinois. In 1S54, John E. Stauffer left 
Ohio with his family and moved to Elkhart 
county, Indiana, where they made their 
home for thirteen years. Soon after the 
close of the Civil war, they came to Ogle 
county, locating on the place which is now 
the home of our subject. On that farm the 
father toiled until 1880, when he rented the 
place and moved to Polo where he has since 
lived a retired life. To John E. and Re- 
becca Stauffer twelve children were born, 
ten of whom are now living. John W. is 
now residing in Glendale, Arizona, where 
he is engaged in the fruit business. Sarah 
E. is the wife of Cyrus Nicodemus, a mar- 
chant of Polo. George W. is a farmer of 
Pine Creek township. Christina is the wife 
of Solomon Solenberger, a retired farmer 
of Polo. Mary E. is the wife oi Abraham 
Miller, of Buffalo township. Ananias is a 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL KECOKD. 



3^7 



farmer of Buffalo township. William is a 
farmer of Pine Creek township. Rebecca 
is the wife of Frank McDowell, of Polo. 
Anna is making her home with her parents 
in Polo. 

The subject of this sketch was thirteen 
years old when he came to Ogle county. 
His education, commenced in the public 
schools of Elkhart county, Indiana, was 
completed in the public schools of Ogle 
county. He assisted his father on the farm 
until he attained his majority, when he 
rented a portion of the home place and 
worked it on shares. The following year 
he purchased eighty acres in Pine Creek 
township, but had to assume the greater 
part of the purchase price. This eighty 
was about three miles from his present 
home, and on the Dixon road. It is now 
owned by John Ambrose. Removing to his 
new purchase, he there lived for fourteen 
years, having in the meantime added eight- 
een acres to the tract. In 1890 he sold the 
place and bought the old homestead where 
he has since made his home. In 1S92 he 
erected his present commodious and com- 
fortable residence, and, since becoming the 
owner, he has erected all the other build- 
ings now on the place. He has followed 
general farming, and is regarded as one of 
the best farmers in the county. 

On the 15th of October, 1876, Mr. 
Stauffer was united in marriage with Miss 
Maggie C. Spickler, daughter of C. B. and 
Sarah (Plumb) Spickler, her father being a 
retired merchant in Polo. By this union 
there have been seven children, two of 
whom are deceased — Florence, Charlie B., 
Ollie C, Ellen R., Henry M., Bertha P. 
and Emma R. The parents met with a 
sad bereavement in the loss of their two 
eldest sons. On New Years day, 1896, the 



boys were skating on Rock river, and both 
fell into an air hole and were drowned. 

Politically Mr. Stauffer is a Republican, 
having been an advocate of the principles 
of the party since casting his first vote. 
Iveligiously he is a member of the German 
Baptist church, and for ten years served as 
deacon in the same. He has always taken 
an active interest in the work of the church, 
being a firm believer in tlie Christian re- 
ligion and in the teachings of his church. 
His wife is also a member and active worker 
in that body. Both are highly esteemed by 
all who know them. Mr. Stauffer has been 
quite successful in life, and his success has 
been attained by his own efforts, assisted by 
his faithful helpmeet. He is the owner of 
one of the finest homes and best farms in 
this rich and productive county. 



T EONARD ANDRUS, deceased, the 
1— < founder of the village of Grand Detour, 
and one of the first settlers of Ogle county, 
was a man of energy, and one who clearly 
saw the possibilities of the beautiful Rock 
river countr}'. He was born in Cornwall, 
Vermont, in 1805, and was a son of Cone 
Andrus, a native of Connecticut. He 
traced his ancestry back for many gener- 
ations on both his father's and mother's 
side, both families being early residents of 
the New England states. His father's fam- 
ily went from Connecticut to Vermont, and 
later to Malone, New York, in which place 
he grew to manhood. After due prepara- 
tion he entered Middleberry College, where 
he spent two years. He did not complete 
the full course, but on the death of his fa- 
ther he left college and returned home. 
Cone Andrus was a farmer by occupation, 
and while of retiring disposition, was a 



3i8 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



man of good business ability. One of his 
brothers was the father of the celebrated 
Bishop Andrews. In his family were four 
children who grew to maturity: Leonard, 
the subject of this sketch; William, who 
died in Malone, New York; Lucius, who 
spent his life in Brooklyn, New York; Albert, 
who lived and died in Malone, New York; 
and George, who lived in Malone until late 
in life, and then moved to New Jersey, 
where his death occurred. Cone Andrus 
died in Malone, New York. 

After attaining his majority Leonard An- 
drus went to Rochester, New York, where 
he engaged in the mercantile business until 
1S33, meeting with fair success. Not sat- 
isfied, however, and believing the west a 
better place for a young man, in the fall of 
1S33, he came west as far as Constantine, 
Michigan, where he remained until the 
spring of 1S34, when he made his way to 
the Ohio river, and started down that 
stream to St. Louis, with the idea of 
making that city his future home. Before 
locating, however, he concluded to go on a 
prospecting tour through northern Illinois, 
having heard something of the beauty of 
that country, and believing that the time 
would soon come when it would be settled 
by a thrifty and enterprising people. 

Arriving at Dixon he took a canoe and 
went up the river until he came to the great 
bend, the beauty of which and the possi- 
bility of founding here a great manufactur- 
ing point, for which there seemed sufficient 
water power, he made his claim. At that 
time there were but few settlements in all 
this region, and they were far between. 
The settlement at Kellogg's grove and at 
Dixon were those nearest to this point. 
Returning east he settled up his business, 
and in the spring of 1S35 returned, stop- 



ping, however, at Constantine, Michigan, 
where he had relatives living. From that 
point Willis and Willard A. House, twin 
brothers, accompanied him. Mrs. Sarah I. 
House, the wife of Willard A. House, came 
a little later, arriving here July 4, 1835. 
She was the first white woman in Grand 
Detour. She later gave birth to a daugh- 
ter, Gertrude, who was the first white child 
born in Grand Detour. 

Soon after his arrival Mr. Andrus became 
associated with Flint & Walker, proprietors 
of the old stage line, which connection was 
continued but a short time. In 1836, in 
company with Russell Green, Amos Bos- 
worth, William G. Dana, Marcus and Den- 
nis Warren, he formed the Hydraulic Com- 
pany, for the improvement of the water 
power and the erection of mills, and in 
1837 the company commenced to build the 
dam, race and sawmill and make other im- 
provements. Among the number to come 
to Grand Detour was John Deere, who 
afterwards became the noted plow manu- 
facturer, and who made a world-wide repu- 
tation and a colossal fortune. Mr. Deere 
was a blacksmith, and opened a shop, and 
in addition to the job work that came to 
him, he engaged in the manufacture of 
shovels and pitchforks. With Mr. Andrus, 
two years later, he formed a partnership, 
and under the firm name of Andrus & 
Deere they commenced the manufacture of 
plows. The fame of the Grand Detour 
plows was soon established throughout the 
west, and the firm did a good business. Mr. 
Deere later withdrew and moved to Moline, 
where he continued the business and estab- 
lished his fame. 

The Hydraulic Company built the first 
grist mill in northern Illinois. It was to 
have commenced running on the 4th of July, 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



319 



1830, and was to form part of the celebra- 
tion of that day, but it failed to start, and 
it was one year later before it was in suc- 
cessful operation. Its success was immedi- 
ate, and it had more patronage than it could 
well accommodate, with its three run of 
stone. 

When Mr. Deere removed to Moline, 
Mr. Andrus continued the business alone 
until it became too large for him to manage 
without help, when he took in Amos Bos- 
worth, his brother-in-law, as a partner, 
which partnership continued until Mr. Bos- 
worth's death, in 1S62. After running the 
business alone again for a time Mr. Andrus 
formed a partnership with Theron Cummins, 
which partnership lasted until the death of 
Mr. Andrus. 

On the 3d of June, 183S, Mr. Andrus 
was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Ann 
Bosworth, a native of Royalton, Vermont, 
and daughter of Amos and Susan (Wheelock) 
Bosworth, both of whom were also natives 
of Royalton, Vermont, and who were among 
the early settlers of Grand Detour. By 
this union three children were born — Caro- 
line C, who died at the age of eight years; 
William C, and Leonard, of the Dixon 
National Bank, Dixon, Illinois. 

In early life Mr. Andrus was a Henry 
Clay Whig, a great admirer of that grand 
old statesman. On the dissolution of the 
Whig party, he became a stanch Republic- 
an, and was an earnest advocate of Re- 
publican principles until his death. He was 
always in public life, and filled almost every 
local official position. He also served as a 
member of the legislature, making a good, 
working member of that body. His ac- 
quaintance with the public men of his day 
was quite extensive, and his influence was 
always felt. He was a man of the people, 



and had at heart the interests of the people. 
The founder of the village of Grand Detour, 
he was connected with almost every enter- 
prise that was introduced into the village. 
He was a pioneer among pioneers, and ex- 
perienced all the hardships conmion to 
those who engage in the development of a 
new country, but he lived to see his adopted 
county and state take front rank, and most 
of the great inventions that have made our 
whole country famous. In the development 
of the country and the various industrial 
enterprises, he certainly bore well his part, 
and his name will not soon be forgotten. 
His death, which occurred February 18, 
1867, was entirely unexpected, having con- 
tracted pneumonia and living thereafter but 
a few days. His death was a sad loss to 
the business and local interests of his 
adopted count}', of which he was such a 
worthy citizen. 



GEORGE B. HIESTAND, the leading 
liveryman of Oregon, Illinois, was 
born in Leaf River township. Ogle county, 
October 28, 1S54, and is the son of Benja- 
min and Lydia (Rice) Hiestand. The fa- 
ther was a native of Ohio, and by occupa- 
tion was a farmer. He came to Illinois in 
the thirties, and located in Leaf River town- 
ship, where he took up a section of land 
from the government, which he improved 
and cultivated up to the time of his death, 
which occurred February 6, 1S55. Leaf 
River at that time was one of the best 
towns in the county. In politics Benjamin 
Hiestand was a Whig, taking great interest 
in the political discussions of the day. A 
strong temperance man he advocated the 
cause of temperance publicly and privately. 
For some years he served as school trustee, 



320 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



and held other offices of honor and trust. 
He was a leading and influential man in his 
township, and was held in high respect 
wherever known. His wife, Lydia, was a 
daughter of Jacob Rice. She was also a 
member of the Methodist Episcopal church, 
a devoted wife and mother. She died June 
13, 1884, at the old homestead, which was 
so long her home. They were the parents 
of seven children. Susan, now the widow 
of David Kendall, resides in Leaf River. 
Urillais the wife of Thomas L. Potter, 
and they reside in Mt. Morris. Mary, who 
married Charles Gaffin, died March 21, 
1898. Jacob and John H. both died young. 
Thomas resides in Mt. Morris township. 
George B. completes the family. 

George B. Hiestand was reared on the 
old farm, and in the schools of his native 
township received a common school educa- 
tion. This was supplemented by a term at 
Mt. Morris Seminary. He was but four 
months old when his father died. As soon 
as old enough, in connection with his broth- 
ers, he carried on the old farm. Later, in 
partnership with his brother Thomas he 
purchased the interests of the other heirs, 
and together they carried on the farm until 
1888, when George purchased his brother's 
interest and then leased it for three years. 
In 1S93 he sold the place to William Ha- 
german, and then removed to the village of 
Leaf River, and in 1895 came to Oregon 
and opened up a livery stable on Fourth 
street, which he has since conducted. He 
has a finely equipped stable with stock, and 
is withal a very accommodating man. 

Mr. Hiestand was married September 4, 
1878, to Miss Adell Bly, daughter of Rath- 
burn and Emily (Richardson) Bly. She is 
a native of Ogle county. Hej father was 
in the Civil war and lost his life in battle. 



By this marriage are two children, Clarence 
L. and Lydia E. , both of whom are yet 
at home. Mr. and Mrs. Hiestand are mem- 
bers of the Methodist Episcopal church. 
In politics he is a Republican. While re- 
siding in Leaf River he served as a member 
of the board of alderman. Fraternally he 
is a member of the Knights of the Globe 
and of the Modern Woodmen of America. 



WALLACE REVELL is one of the 
honored veterans of the Civil war 
whose devotion to his country was tested 
not only by service on the field of battle 
but in the still more deadly dangers of a 
southern prison. This gallant soldier is 
now most capably and satisfactorily serv- 
ing as postmaster of Stillman Valley, and 
is also successfully engaged in the grocery 
business at that place. 

Mr. Revell was born near Niagara, 
Ontario, Canada, July 19, 1842. His 
father, William Revell was born in England, 
in 1S17, and in 1S34 crossed the broad At- 
lantic with his father, William, Sr. , and 
family, settling near Hamilton, Ontario, 
where he grew to manhood. He was 
married in Canada to Miss Mary A. Bart- 
lett, a native of that country. He was a 
tailor by trade and continued to follow that 
occupation in the Dominion until 184S, and 
when he removed to Conneaut, Ashtabula 
count)', Ohio, but did not remain there long 
coming to Ogle county, Illinois, in April, 
1850. Here he purchased one hundred and 
twenty acres of raw land in Scott township, 
erected thereon a house, and then turned 
his attention to the ardous task of develop- 
ing a good farm from wild land. During those 
early dajs the familye.xperienced many of the 
hardships and privations incident to pioneer 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



321 



life. The father was one of the most in- 
dustrious and enterprising men of the 
county and was fairly successful in his under- 
takings. He continued to work at his trade 
until 1S58, after which he devoted his en- 
tire time to agricultural pursuits. He died 
in 1885, and his wife, who still survives him, 
now makes her home with her daughter, 
Mrs. Graham. Wallace is the oldest of 
their six children, four sons and two 
daughters, all of whom reached years of 
maturity, but two sons are now deceased. 
Wallace Revell was a lad of eight years 
when brought by his parents to Ogle county, 
and upon the home farm he grew to man- 
hood, acquiring a good knowledge of work 
and a fair common-school education. 
Prompted by a spirit of patriotism he en- 
listed August II, 1862, in Company K, 
Ninety-second Illinois Volunteer Infantry, 
as a private, and with his regiment was as- 
signed to the army of the Cumberland. He 
participated in the battles of Franklin, Ten- 
nessee, and Chickamauga, and spent the 
fall and winter of 1S63 as courier at Gen- 
eral Thomas' headquarters. In March, 
1864, he joined his regiment in northern 
Alabama, near Chattanooga, they having 
been mounted in July, 1863, and afterward 
served as mounted infantry. In April, 1864, 
they went into camp at Ringgold, Georgia, 
and while doing picket duty on Taylor's 
Ridge, on the morning of April 23, 1864, 
Mr. Revell, with twenty of his regiment, 
was taken prisoner, after being twice wound- 
ed in the skirmish by gunshots through the 
left fore arm and right hip. He was first 
taken to Atlanta, where he was held for 
about four weeks, and the following four 
months were spent as a prisoner in Ander- 
sonville, where with others he experienced 
all the horrors and privations of southern 



prison life. About one thousand of the 
men were then taken to Charleston, South 
Carolina, where they were confined in a 
prison camp for four weeks. From Octo- 
ber, 1864, until February 24, 1S65, Mr. 
Revell remained a prisoner, and was then 
exchanged at Richmond, Virginia. He suf- 
fered most while at Charleston, as the pris- 
oners were confined on a low piece of 
ground. The prisoners were furnished with 
spades and by digging holes about four feet 
deep got the bracksh water contained there- 
in and were forced to drink. It made near- 
ly all ill and many died. On being released 
our subject was still sick andwas sent to 
the hospital at Wilmington, Delaware. He 
had not fully recovered when discharged. 
For two years after the war, Mr. Revell 
remained at home, and then rented land, 
purchased a team, and began life for him- 
self. He was married December 11, 1868, 
the lady of his choice being Miss Adelaide 
L. Clayton, a daughter of James M. Clay- 
ton, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this 
work. To them were born four children, 
namely: Charles W., who is with his fa- 
ther in the store and is also serving as dep- 
uty postmaster; Nellie M., wife of J. D. 
Scoon, of West Superior, Wisconsin; Matie, 
who died at the age of five years; and Ches- 
ter A., who is attending the home school. 
After his marriage, Mr. Revell located 
in Monroe township where he subsequently 
bought a small farm, which he operated 
for eight years and then sold in 1876. Dur- 
ing the following fifteen years he lived upon 
rented land and continued to engage in ag- 
ricultural pursuits, but in 1890 removed to 
Stillman Valley and established himself in 
the grocery business, which he has since 
successfully conducted. He carries a large 
and well selected stock and bears an excel- 



322 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



lent reputation for fair and lionorable deal- 
ing. In the fall of 1897 he was appointed 
postmaster, and is now acceptably filling 
that office. He has been a pronounced 
Republican in politics since casting his first 
vote for General U. S. Grant in 1868, and 
in religious faith he and his wife are Bap- 
tists. Socially he is a prominent member 
of the Odd Fellows society, has filled all 
the chairs in his lodge, is past grand, and 
and has represented the local order in the 
grand lodge. He also belongs to the 
Knights of Pythias, and is past commander 
of W. C. Baker Post, No. 551, G. A. R., 
of Stillman Valley. 



HENRY GRAEHLING, who resides on 
section 22, Eagle Point township, is a 
worthy representative of that hardy race 
that have done so much to build up this 
new country, and who, however lowly their 
condition in life on their arrival here, by in- 
dustry and economy manage to accumulate 
a competency, leaving to their children 
sufficient means to give them a good start 
in life. He was born in Alsace, Loraine, 
Germany, June 28, 1828, and in his native 
land grew to manhood, and in his youth 
learned the blacksmith trade, although 
reared on a farm. Like many other youths 
in the old country, he dreamed of better 
opportunities afforded in America than in 
the crowded cities of the old world. He 
determined to here try his fortunes, and 
the resolve was put into execution. Bid- 
ding farewell to the friends of his youth he 
set sail for the promised land, and landing 
at New York, he proceeded to Pittsburg, 
Pennsylvania, where he arrived July 11, 
1S50, joining there some German friends. 
Securing work in a vise factory, he there 



worked three years, saving in that time 
some four hundred dollars, which he lost 
through a broker or banker. He was so 
discouraged that he did not have the heart 
to longer remain in that city. From there 
he went to Westmoreland county, Pennsyl- 
vania, and for two years was engaged in 
farming. 

Mr. Graehling was married in Pittsburg, 
Pennsylvania, August 8, 1853, to Miss 
Walburga Beck, who was born in Wurtem- 
burg, Germany, February 25, 1835, and 
who came with her brother and sister to the 
United States in 1851, the family locating 
in Pittsburg. By this union ten children 
were born, two of whom are deceased. 
Mary is now the wife of Fred Diehl, of 
Carroll county, Illinois. Alexander is en- 
gaged in farming in Whiteside county, Illi- 
nois, where he owns a good farm. James 
is a farmer of Carroll county, Illinois, where 
he is the owner of a good farm. George 
W. also is the owner of a good farm in 
Carroll county, where he is engaged in 
farming. Henry is a farmer of Ogle county. 
Elizabeth is the wife of Andrew Peters, of 
Carroll county. Gustaf Adolph and Fred 
Wilhelm yet reside at home. John and 
Albert were the deceased. They have in 
all fourteen grandchildren. 

After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. 
Graehling took up their residence in Alle- 
gheny City, Pennsylvania, Mr. Graehling 
working at his trade. In September, 1856, 
he came west to Chicago, and there con- 
tinued seven months, working at his trade, 
his time being principally given to horse- 
shoeing. His wife joined him in the spring 
of 1857, and in April of that year they went 
to Sugar Grove, Lee county, where he again 
worked at his trade a few months and then 
moved to Eagle Point, Ogle county, con- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



3^3 



tinuing there at his trade. He there made 
his first purchase of real estate, becoming 
the owner of a small plat of ground, and a 
little house and shop. He remained there 
until September, i860, when he moved to 
the place where he now resides. He first 
purchased five acres of ground, a piece of 
brush and stumps, moved here his shop, 
and commenced to clear the land. Later 
he purchased five acres more, and still later 
two and a half acres. He improved his 
little tract, but in 1S65 sold his personal 
property and moved to Polo and gave his 
time exclusively to his trade for one year. 
In the spring of 1866, he returned to his 
place in Eagle Point and worked at his trade 
in connection with farming. From time to 
time as his means would permit, he pur- 
chased some land until he had a good sized 
farm. In 1879 he bought an adjoining farm 
of one hundred and si.xty acres, and still 
later forty acres more. His ne.xt purchase 
was a farm of one hundred and fifty-four 
acres in Carroll county. At one time he 
owned five hundred acres of e.xcellent land, 
but has sold off to his sons a portion, but 
still owns three hundred acres. His farm 
is well improved, and he has erected on it 
a large and neat house, big barn and other 
outbuildings. 

Politically Mr. Graehling is a stanch 
Republican, his first presidential vote being 
cast for Abraham Lincoln in i860. The 
party ticket he has continued to support 
from that time to the present. Religiously, 
he is a member of the Lutheran church at 
Polo, his wife being a member of the same 
body. For forty-two years they have been 
residents of Ogle county, and both are well 
known and highly respected. Beginning 
life in limited circumstances, they have en- 
dured together many toils and privations. 
35 



For some years fortune did not seem to 
favor them, but they toiled on and have 
now the satisfaction of knowing that they 
have laid by enough to sustain and keep 
them in old age, and that their children are 
also well provided for. They know further 
that what they have gained has been by 
honest industry. 



SAMUEL DOMER, deceased, was for 
more than fifty years an honored citi- 
zen of Ogle county, one respected by all 
who knew him. He was born September 3, 
1 818, near Sharpsburg, Washington county, 
Maryland, and there grew to manhood, re- 
ceiving his education in the common 
schools. In 1839 he left his native state 
and went to Ohio, where he remained one 
year, when for some reason he returned to 
his old home and there remained until 
1845, when he came to Ogle county, which 
remained his home until called to the upper 
and better world. He was a brickmaker by 
trade, and on locating in Mt. Morris town- 
ship, in 1845, he made the brick and built 
his own home. He soon gave up his trade 
for the more profitable and healthy occupa- 
tion of farming. 

Mr. Domer was twice married, his first 
union being with Miss Elizabeth Steffa. 
After a wedded life of but two years, Mrs. 
Domer passed away. They had one child, 
which died in infancy. On the loth of 
March, 1852, Mr. Domer wedded Miss 
Rachel Varner, a native of Fayette county, 
Ohio, born January 9, 1829, and daughter 
of William Herman and Cynthia Ann (Knox) 
Varner, who were also natives of the same 
county, the former born January 19, 180S, 
and the latter April 4, 18 10. When 
Mrs. Domer was but a year and a half old 



324 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



her parents moved to Fort Wa3'ne, Indi- 
ana. In 1837, when she was but eight 
years old, they moved to Lee county, lUi- 
nois, and in 1850 came to Ogle county, 
where she has since resided. On the 22d 
of June, 1S92, her motherdied at the age of 
eighty-two years. Her father died about 
1837, in Indiana. They were the parents 
of three daughters, Mrs. Domer being the 
eldest; Sarah, now Mrs. William Turner, of 
Lee county, Illinois; Mary L. , wife of 
John Etnyre, of Paine's Point, Illinois. 

To Samuel and Rachel Domer were born 
eight children: Martha Frances, born Feb- 
ruary 15, 1854, married Charles Reber. 
She died February 16, 1876. Lydia Ann, 
born November 27, 1855, died September 
9, 1S62. Andrew J., born July 29, 1857, 
married Ida Lewis, and to them four chil- 
dren have been born: Maude, Earl, Min- 
nie and Laura. They reside in Kansas, 
where he is engaged in farming. William 
H., born April 20, 1S59, married Kate 
Alter, and four children have blessed their 
union — Jesse, Ethel, Percy and Bessie. 
They are living in Mt. Morris. Samuel O., 
born May 21, 1863, married Emma Shuber, 
and they have two children, Floyd and 
Edna. They are living in Polo, Illinois. 
Franklin V., born September 30, 1S68, 
married Effie Brooks, and they have one 
child, Mary Eva. They are living in 
Oregon township. Frederick W. , born 
April 29, 1870, married Anna Fridley, and 
they have one child, Ray V. They are 
living on the old homestead in Mt. Morris 
township. Sarah A., born July 10, 1873, 
married William W. Koontz, and they re- 
side on the home place in Mt. Morris town- 
ship. 

Mr. Domer 'Commenced farming on a 
farm of one hundred and si.xty acres, on 



which he lived for twenty-two years. He 
then purchased another farm, to which he 
added from time to time until he had a farm 
of four hundred acres, all of which he had 
under improvement. This he disposed of 
and purchased two hundred and ten acres 
in Mt. Morris township, upon which he 
lived about twenty years. In 1895 he 
rented the farm and moved to Mt. Morris, 
to spend his remaining years in retirement. 
He was, however, not long for this world, 
as the summons came for him to depart July 
4, 1898. He died of dropsy and heart 
disease, and his remains were interred in the 
cemetery at Silver Creek, Ogle county. 
In politics he was originally an old-line 
Whig, but on the dissolution of that party 
he became a Dem.ocrat, with which party 
he acted during the remainder of his life. 
Interested in the public schools, for many 
years he served as school director. He 
never cared to push himself forward in any 
manner, but was quiet and unassuming in 
manner, content to fulfill his daily duties of 
farm and home lite, leaving to others the 
more exacting responsibilities of public life. 
He left a large circle of relatives and friends 
to mourn his loss. His widow, who is 
highly esteemed for her many excellent 
qualities of head and heart, is yet living in 
Mt. Morris, where her friends are many. 



M 



ARTIN A. FREI, a leading and suc- 
cessful merchant of Forreston, came 
to the county in 1866 and has here spent 
one-third of a century. He was born in the 
village of Nuettermoor, Cantor Leer, Ger- 
many, October 10, 1852, and is the son of 
Aldirk and Anna (Brandt) Frei, both natives 
of Germany. In his native village he re- 
ceived his education and, there remained 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECOKU 



325 



until he was thirteen years old, when the 
family emigrated to the United States and 
settled in Forreston township, Ogle county, 
where the father engaged in farming. From 
1866 until 1S79 our subject remained on 
the farm and assisted in the farm work, be- 
coming a thorough and scientific farmer. 
He has yet living one brother and five sis- 
ters. Hilka is the wife of John Geisman, 
living near Shannon. Renskea is the wife 
of T. Buisker, a farmer of Lincoln town- 
ship. Gerhardina is the wife of B. Temple, 
a farmer residing near Shannon. John re- 
sides two miles west of Baileyville, in 
Stephenson county. Lena is the wife of 
Henry VanDeest, a farmer of Forreston 
township. Margaret is the wife of L. Pam- 
mer, residing at Ashton, Iowa. An older 
brother, Frederick, preceded the family to 
the United States. During the Civil war he 
offered his services to his adopted country, 
and dying while yet in the service was bur- 
ied at Monterey, Tennessee. The father of 
this family died August 18, 1870, and the 
mother, August 26, 1877. 

On the 27th of November, 1S77, Mr. 
Frei was united in marriage with Miss Annie 
DeGrote, daughter of F. and Tina DeGrote. 
She was born in Woquard, Emden, Ger- 
many, and came to America in 1866 in 
company with her parents, who settled in 
Ridott. By this union four children have 
been born — Ollie J., Tina, Fred and Henry 
F. Of these, Ollie and Fred are assisting 
their father in the store. The family are 
well known and highly esteemed. 

In 1879 Mr. Frei left the farm and went 
to Freeport. where he engaged in the mer- 
cantile business, remaining there until 1885, 
when he came to Forreston and started a 
general dry goods and grocery business, in 
which he has since continued with gratify- 



ing success. He cast his first presidential 
vote for Rutherford B. Ha\cs, and has 
since been a stanch and uncompromising 
Republican. He has been town trustee for 
more than si,\ years, and has been on the 
school board for three terms, and is the 
present secretary of that body. He is the 
secretary of the Retail Merchants Associ- 
ation, and has held different offices of the 
community. A member of the German Re- 
formed church, he has been superintendent 
of its Sunday-school for the past si.\ years, 
and has been a worker of the Sunday-school 
since 1885. He is a self-made and success- 
ful business man, affable and courteous in 
address, and interests himself in all im- 
provements, and is a factor in the develop- 
ment of his adopted city and county along 
all lines. He is popular and influential, 
and his friends are many throughout Ste- 
phenson and Ogle counties. 



ALFRED R. BINKLEY, now living a 
retired life in Mt. Morris, is a veteran 
of the Civil war. He was born in Wash- 
inton county, Maryland, January 13, 1847, 
and is the son of Daniel and Catherine 
(Weaver) Binkley, the former born in 
Franklin county, Pennsylvania, in 1S18, 
and the latter in Washington county, Mary- 
land, in 1826. By occupation the father 
was a farmer, and was a strong, robust man 
up to the time of his death, in i S60. He 
was taken sick with some stomach trouble 
on Friday and died the following Tuesday. 
The mother is yet living in Morganville, 
Washington county, Maryland. They were 
the parents of si.\ children, our subject be- 
ing their first born. Calvin married Sevilla 
Butterbaugh, and they reside in Maryland 
township, Ogle county, where he is en- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



gaged in farming, owning one hundred and 
eighty acres of land. William died in early 
childhood. Ida married Abram Hawes, 
and they reside in Morganville, Maryland, 
where he follows his trade of carpentering. 
Charles died of typhoid fever at the age of 
twenty-seven years. Daniel married Eva 
Downey, and they live in Morganville, 
Maryland, where he follows farming. 

The subject of this sketch remained in 
his native state until he was sixteen years 
old, when he came to Ogle county, and 
here attended school until 1864, when he 
enlisted in the One Hundred and Fortieth 
regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry, Com- 
pany I, with which he served until the close 
of the war. He was on picket duty the 
greater part of the time and was in several 
skirmishes. On receiving his discharge at 
Camp Fry, Chicago, he returned to Ogle 
county, where he remained a few months. 
He then went east, and for five years was 
clerk in a general store at Green Castle, 
Franklin county, Pennsylvania, after which 
he again came to Mt. Morris, Ogle county, 
and clerked for a time. Later he purchased 
a restaurant, which he gradually turned into 
a general store, in which line of business he 
continued until -in July, 1895, when he 
was compelled to retire on account of ill 
health. 

Mr. Binkley was married February 12, 
1878, to Miss Laura B. Sprecher, of Mt. 
Morris, and daughter of Philip and Letha 
(Castle) Sprecher. They now reside in a 
comfortable home in Mt. Morris. Mrs. 
Binkley is a consistent member of the 
Brethren church, in the work of which she 
is deeply interested. She is one of a fam- 
ily of eight children, three of whom are 
now living. Fraternally Mr. Binkley is a 
member of the Grand Army of the Repub- 



lic, in which he keeps alive the memory of 
the days, when yet a youth he went out in 
defense of his country's honor, and for the 
restoration of the Union. He has lived to 
see not only the Union restored, but its 
boundaries extended, good feeling existing 
among those who wore the blue and the 
grey, and a more fraternal feeling than ever 
existed before. 



PETER SMITH, banker, capitalist and 
retired farmer, was a natural financier 
who aided much in the development of 
Ogle county. He was the son of Edward 
and Anna (Tebow) Smith, and was born in 
Franklin, Bergen county, New Jersey, De- 
cember 21, 1808. His American ancestry 
runs back to one of the members of a little 
Swedish colony, who settled in Bergen 
county. New Jersey, in 1624. When twelve 
years old he moved with his parents to New 
York city, where he attended school and ac- 
quired a good common-school education. 
His first business venture was in buying and 
selling fruit, and when but sixteen years 
old he engaged in the poultry business, and 
afterwards carried on the manufacture of 
mustard and cayenne pepper, in which busi- 
ness he continued until he was twenty-one 
years old. For the succeeding ten years 
he was in the wood business, and also in 
buying and selling horses, purchasing his 
stock in the state of Ohio and selling in New 
York. He met with success in each line of 
business, but he believed that he could do 
still better in the West. Coming to Ogle 
county, he settled in White Rock township 
and a few years later he entered six hun- 
dred acres of land in Marion and Pine Rock 
townships (although there were then no 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



329 



townships), and erected a log cabin, i6x 24 
feet, and one and a half stories in height. 
For miles around neighbors turned out and 
assisted him in its erection, the time requir- 
ing but one da}-. \\'ith his wife and two 
children he there laid the foundation for his 
large fortune. While developing his own 
farm he kept a breaking team of five yoke 
of cattle to assist other early settlers in the 
neighborhood. By energy and good judg- 
ment it was not long before he owned over 
one thousand acres of land. His ability 
lay in wisely directing the work of others. 
He was collector and constable in Marion 
township and school director about fifteen 
years. He continued farming and stock 
raising until December, 1875, when he 
moved to Rochelle. For several years he 
was president of the First National Bank of 
Rochelle. In 1883 he sold out his interest 
in this bank, making his investments in well 
improved farms and loans. Mr. Smith was 
a life-long Democrat, but had no taste for 
holding office. He died November 24, 
1886, at the age of seventy-eight years, 
leaving a fortune of a quarter of a million 
dollars. 

May 12, 1 83 I, Mr. Smith married Sarah 
Foster in New York city. She was born in 
County Armagh, North of Ireland, July 12, 
1809, and was of Scotch-Irish descent. 
Eleven children were born to them, five of 
whom died in infancy; a daughter, Emma, 
died at the age of twenty-four. The fol- 
lowing survive: Abbie A., who married 
Minor Parker, deceased, resides at Steward; 
Margaret, who married Austin Noe, deceased, 
resides at Rochelle; Caroline, the wife of 
Patrick O'Mara, resides in White Rock 
township; Susan M. married Aron Cass, 
deceased, mention of whom is made in an- 
other article; George F. married Mary 



Jones, and now lives on the old homestead 
in Marion township. 

Mrs. Smith by her sound sense, indus- 
try and economy was a great aid to her 
husband. She was always a Presbyterian. 
She died July 9, 1897, at the age of eighty- 
eight. 



FRANKLIN F. PEEK, who resides on 
section 34, W^Dosung township, is a 
well-known citizen of Ogle county, which 
has been his home since 1838. He was 
born in Bethel, Windsor county, Vermont, 
March 2, 1832, and is the son of John and 
Lucretia (Lamb) Peek, both of whom were 
natives of \'ermont. His father was a 
farmer by occupation, and politically was a 
strong Whig and an active worker in the 
party. He came with his family to Ogle 
county in 1838, coming by water from Buf- 
falo to Detroit, and from there to Ogle 
county by teams, being five weeks on the 
road, arriving in July. He stopped about 
three months at Grand Detour, where his 
brother-in-law, John Deere, afterward the 
famous plow man, was then located. John 
Deere first married Demis Lamb, a sister of 
the mother of our subject, and came west 
and established himself at Grand Detour 
where he was working at his trade of black- 
smith. He had not then begun the manu- 
facture of plows, which later brought him 
both reputation and colossal fortune. While 
residing at Moline his first wife died and he 
later married her sister, Lucina Lamb. 

In the fall of 1838 John Peek bought 
the claim to two hundred acres, which he 
afterward entered, now the home of our 
subject. That place he put under improve- 
ment and made it his permanent home. 
He became quite successful financially, and 



330 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



was well known throughout the county. 
He was quite active in political affairs, but 
never an office-seeker. At the time of his 
settlement on his claim there was little else 
but wolves and rattlesnakes in the vicinity. 
There was but one house between his place 
and Dixon, and no settlement north until 
Oldtown, or Buffalo was reached. At that 
time and for years after Chicago was the 
chief market, and to that place they hauled 
their grain and other produce. With a 
four-ox team they could haul sixty or sixty- 
five bushels of wheat, and with a two-horse 
team about thirty-five or forty bushels, and 
ten days were required to make the trip 
with oxen. Our subject speaks of one trip 
of ten days on which he accompanied his 
father, of not having but one warm meal 
during the whole time. They usually car- 
ried their provisions with them for they 
could not afford to pay out what little was 
obtained for their produce for meals. The 
money was too badly needed for other pur- 
poses. He tells of holding a lantern while 
the grain was being unloaded at Chicago, 
and the scoop shovel used for the purpose 
was left in the wagon and brought home 
with them, being the first of the kind in the 
neighborhood. But think of unloading 
grain in the city of Chicago by the light of 
a lantern ! 

John and Lucretia Peek were the par- 
ents of nine children, all save one born in 
Vermont, and all lived to maturity, eight of 
the number yet living. Samuel C. has been 
a resident of Calaveras county, California, 
since 1S59; William P., who resides in 
Amadore county, California, has been a 
prominent citizen there since 1852. He has 
filled a number of important offices in his 
adopted county, serving as supervisor 
several years, and as a member of the state 



legislature two terms; George N. is a re- 
tired farmer residing in Polo; Jeannette 
married Fenwick Anderson, of Bureau coun- 
ty, Illinois, who has been a prominent busi- 
ness man and politican, and extensive land 
owner. She died January 9, 1899; Frank- 
lin F., our subject, was next in order of 
birth; Mellona, who is single, makes her 
home with her brothers and sisters; John 
D. died when about thirty-five years old; 
Henry P. is a resident of Oregon, Illinois; 
Horace W. is a farmer of South Dakota. 

The subject of this sketch was but six 
years of age when he came with his parents 
in Ogle county. The first school he attend- 
ed here was at Sugar Grove, four miles 
from his home. While attending that school 
he boarded with a family in the neighbor- 
hood and did chores for his board. One 
year's time would probably cover the entire 
period of his school life, his attendance be- 
ing in the winter months for a very short 
time. When he attained his majority he 
began life for himself, working at various 
occupations. Much of the prairie in the 
vicinity of his home he assisted in breaking 
and otherwise improving. In 1861 he went 
to Calaveras county, California, where he 
remained until October, 1864, when he re- 
turned home on account of his father's 
death and took charge of the home farm. 
He has since carried it on, his mother mak- 
ing her home with him until her death in 
February, 1873. Soon after her death he 
purchased the interest of the other heirs, 
becoming sole owner. 

Mr. Peck was married April 2, 1874, at 
the home of his uncle, John Deere, in Mol- 
ine, to Mrs. Mattie Wood, widow of Beeler 
Wood, of Moline, and daughter of Asa and 
Luchera (Warren) Eaton, her mother being 
of the family of General Warren, of Revo- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



331 



lutionary fame. The eldest brother of her 
mother, Daniel Warren, was a colonel in 
the war of 18 12. Mrs. Peck's first marriage 
was celebrated in Moline, where she lived 
until her husband's death one year later. 
She was born in Windsor county, Vermont, 
where she grew to womanhood. She re- 
ceived a good education at South Wood- 
stock, Vermont, at the Green Mountain 
Liberal Institute, and when but eighteen 
engaged in teaching in her native state. 
Two years later she came west to Cham- 
paign county, Illinois, where she had a 
cousin living, who was the only acquaintance 
in that locality. She taught the first tern] 
of school at Philo, in that county, and then 
took a position in the public schools of Ur- 
bana, where she remained two years. From 
there she went to Decatur, where she also 
remained two years, and then went to 
Moline, where she was teaching at the time 
of her marriage to Mr. Wood. She was 
induced to go to Moline from the fact that 
Mrs. Deere was an old Vermont friend. 
She is one of a family of eleven children, 
five of whom are yet living. Besides her- 
self, the living are George W., of Geneseo, 
Illinois; Mary, wife of Joseph Savage, of 
Polo, Illinois; Frederick W. , who remains 
on the old homestead in Vermont; and Dr. 
David D. , a practicing physician, of 3147 
Indiana avenue, Chicago. 

Since taking possession of the old home- 
stead, Mr. Peek has followed general farm- 
ing and stock raising, feeding usually the 
grain he grows on the place. He has been 
a Republican since the organization of the 
party, but has never been an office-seeker. 
Since 1891, e.xcept two years, he has been 
serving as supervisor of his township, filling 
the position to the general satisfaction of 
those interested. He has ever been active 



in educational matters, serving many years 
on the school board. It is, however, as 
one of the representative farmers of the 
township that he is best known. On the 
old homestead he has made many improve- 
ments, adding to the beauty and value of 
the place. The old Galena and Dixon 
stage road used to cross the farm, and a 
magnificent row of hard maple trees now 
on the place was set out by our subject's 
father along the road. He has made a suc- 
cess in life and has gained the esteem and 
respect of his many acquaintances, not only 
for his integrity and upright character, but 
for his ability and good judgment as well. 
Mrs. Peek is a cultivated and highly re- 
fined lady, of scholarly attainments. Their 
home and genial hospitality is shared and 
appreciated by their many friends and 
guests. In the summer of 1875 they visit- 
ed their old home in Vermont, and al- 
though he had left it when but si.x years 
old, Mr. Peek was yet able to recognize 
some of the old landmarks. 



WILLIAM H. STEFFA, the subject of 
this sketch, was born December 21, 
1S57, in Rockvale township, Ogle county. 
He is the son of David and Martha (Hill) 
Steffa, who were born in Maryland, the 
former March 19, 1823, and the latter in 
1S31. By occupation Mr. Steffa was a 
farmer, and came to Ogle county in 1S41 
with his parents. Mr. and Mrs. Steffa had 
ten children, namely: Jacob E., li\ing in 
Kansas; 15arbara A., also living in Kansas; 
Ella, living in Nebraska; W^illiam H., of 
whom we are writing; Andrew David, a res- 
ident of Iowa; J. F. and O. B., of Rock- 
vale; J. M., of Kansas; Effie, of Rockvale; 
and Lottie, who died when twenty years of 



332 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



age. Mr. Steffa is living with his son, the 
subject of this sketch. His wife died Octo- 
ber 26, 1891. 

Our subject attended school and helped 
his father until eighteen years of age, when 
he started out for himself, going first to the 
farm of Joseph Wagoner, where he remained 
for one year and then worked by the month 
for eighteen years, after which time he rent- 
ed tlie farm of Joshua Thomas for a period 
of two years. At the expiration of that 
time Mr. Steffa moved to Hamilton county, 
Nebraska, where he made his home for one 
year, moving later to Scott county, Kansas, 
where he resided for eighteen months, and 
where he purchased a valuable tract of one 
hundred and si.xty acres, still in his pos- 
session. He afterward returned to Ogle 
county, where he still resides, and where he 
is still occupied in the management of the 
highly cultured farm on section 17. 

On the 14th of September, 1890, Mr. 
Steffa married Mrs. Mary Haney, who was 
born October 29, 1S4G, and is the daughter 
of E. T. and Margaret (Howard) Mallory. 
Mr. Mallory is a native of Yorkshire, Eng- 
land, and was born February 18, 1818. 
His first wife was from Scotland, where she 
was born February 13, 1812. When nine 
years of age, Mrs. Mallory moved with her 
parents to London, Canada, where she met 
her first husband, John McGuffin, a Cana- 
dian, by whom she had six children. She 
afterward married Edward T. Mallory, and 
they are the parents of five children. 
Mary, the wife of the subject of this sketch; 
Ellen, who was born July 23, 1849, is the 
widow of Olwyn Trask, and resides in Aus- 
tin; Frances A., born April 5, 185 i, is the 
wife of Frank Robinson, a carpenter, also 
living in Austin; Edward T. was born Au- 
gust 14, 1853. He was president of the 



Minnesota Stoneware Company, at Red 
Wing, Minnesota, where his widow still re- 
sides. 

The youngest child, Thomas Howard, 
was born February 13, 1854. He married 
Ann Steffa, and they reside in Chicago, 
where Mr. Mallory is a traveling salesman 
for a large brickware concern. Edward 
Mallory lent his support to the Republican 
party. He was actively interested in all 
public affairs, and was school-director and 
constable at the time of his demise, which 
occurred November 28, 1856. Mr. Mallory 
returned to England to visit the home of 
his childhood, and later with reference to 
some legacies which were left to him. Mrs. 
Mallory's death occurred February 13,1 862. 
Her father was one of the patriots who 
fought in the Canadian rebellion. 

Mrs. Steffa, the wife of our subject, was 
twice married. Her first husband was Pat- 
rick Haney, whom she married March 19, 

1863, Eleven children graced this mar- 
riage, as follows: George E. , born April 6, 

1864, married Mary Ebersole, and together 
with their seven children, they reside in 
Manson, Iowa. William S., born June 17, 

1865, married Minnie Lewis. They have 
two children, and live near Bailyville, Kan- 
sas. Olive E. was born March 3, 1867. 
She married C. A. Rosecrans, and they have 
one child. Their home is in Chicago, where 
Mr. Rosecrans is engaged in the wholesale 
hardware basiness. Henry B. was born 
September 29, 1868, and married Mabel 
Morton. They have one child and live in 
Mount Morris township. Lucy Ann was 
born April 16, 1870, and died two days 
after her birth. John H. was born April 
24, 1 87 1, and makes his home in Chicago, 
where he is in the employ of his brother-in- 
law. Mary Edith, born July i, 1873, mar- 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



333 



ried Henry Lohafer. They have one child 
and lives near Mount Morris. Maggie Irene 
was born February 9, 1876, and is living at 
home. Homer C. was born March 26, 
187S, and is attending college at Mount 
Morris. Bessie Pearl, born January 26, 
1880, died of appendicitis December 3, 
1897. Walter P. was born January 13, 
1883, and is living at home, attending the 
district school. Mr. Haney was a Demo- 
crat and gave his support to that party un- 
til his death, which occurred July 19, 1882. 
Mrs. Steffa is the possessor of three hun- 
dred acres in the estate on which they re- 
side. In politics our subject is a Repub- 
lican, and ardently supports the party to 
which he belongs. He is a clear-sighted 
man of business, and has a very high stand- 
ing in the community in which he resides. 



REV. JAMES H. MORE, M. D.— Only 
those lives are worthy of record that 
have been potential factors in the public 
progress in promoting the general welfare 
or advancing the educational or moral inter- 
ests of the community. Dr. More has 
rounded the psalmist's span of three score 
years and ten, has always been found true 
to his church, to his country and to his 
friends, and the world is certainly far better 
for his having lived. 

The earliest ancestor of the family of 
which our subject has any knowledge is 
John More, who was of the Grant clan of 
the Highlands of northern Scotland, and 
who was married at Forrest to Isabel Dun- 
can, December 22, 1735. Their son John, 
who was born February 24, 1745, was mar- 
ried in 1770, to Betty Taylor, of Elgin, 
Scotland, and they lived happily together 
for the long period of fifty-three years. 

36 



Their two children were both born in Scot- 
land, but in the autumn of 1772 the family 
emigated to America. They spent the win- 
ter in New York city, and in the spring of 
1773 ascended the Hudson river to Cats- 
kill, crossed the mountains and proceeded 
through the wilderness to what is now Del- 
aware county, New York. Coming to 
a favorable spot where the large trees of 
the forest indicated a fruitful soil, they 
stopped, and in that wild region made for 
themselves a home. Two children were born 
in Scotland, and six children in America. 
From these worthy pioneers are descended 
many who have won distinction in the pul- 
pit, on the rostrum, at the bar, and in com- 
mercial, financial, medical and educational 
circles as well as in the humbler walks 
of life. 

James More, grandfather of the Doctor, 
was the sixth in order of birth in the family 
of eight children born to John and Betty 
More. He was born in Roxbury, Delaware 
county. New York, January 10, 1782, and 
died May 19, 1866. He married Roxana, 
daughter of John and Patience (Post) Ben- 
jamin. Of the six children born of this 
union, John Benjamin More, the second in 
order of birth , was born November 21,1 804, 
and died in Polo, Illinois, February 24, 1886. 
In 1829, he married Miss Louisa Jane Kel- 
ley, who was born in Middletown, Delaware 
county. New York, November 6, 1S09, a 
daughter of Phineas and Rosalind Kelley. 
She makes her home with our subject and 
is still in the possession of her mental and 
physical faculties. Her father, a blacksmith 
by trade, was born in Dutchess county, 
New York, December 6, 1777, and died at 
age of sixty-seven years. He was a son of 
David Kelley, a soldier of the Revolutionary 
war, who married a Miss Ellis. Mrs. More's 



334 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



maternal grandfather was Jonathan Kehey, 
whose mother was Priscilla King, and he 
married Grace Godfrey, a daughter of John 
Godfrey. 

Dr. More, the subject of this sketch, 
was born in Halcottsville, Delaware county, 
New York, August 31, 1826, a son of John 
S. and Louisa J. (Kelley) More, and his 
boyhood was passed in the town of Roxbury, 
that county, his education being obtanied 
in the common schools and the academies 
at Prattsville and Fergusonville, where he 
prepared for college. He successfully en- 
gaged in teaching school for several terms 
in Ro.xbury, and later entered the medical 
department of the University of Buffalo, 
New York, where he was graduated June 27, 
1853. Coming west, he located at Buffalo 
Grove, Ogle county, Illinois, in May, 1854, 
and the following August began the practice 
of his chosen profession with Dr. W. W. 
Burns. In 1856 he embarked in the drug 
and book business in Polo, but four years 
later entered the ministry of the Methodist 
church as a member of the Rock River Con- 
ference, being first stationed at Harvard and 
later at Richmond, McHenry county. At 
the latter place he joined the Union army 
as chaplain of the Ninety-fifth Illinois Vol- 
unteer Infantry, which participated in many 
important engagements in Missouri, Tenn- 
essee, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas and 
Louisiana. The regiment was at first in the 
Seventeenth Army Corps, but later formed 
a part of the Sixteenth Army Corps, under 
General A. J. Smith, and was mustered out 
in August, 18G5. 

After the war. Dr. More continued his 
labors in Roek R iver Conference, was sta- 
tioned at Mt. Morris two years and Kanka- 
kee one year, and in 1 868 was appointed 
presiding elder of the Dixon district, where 



he remained for four years. During the 
following three years he had charge of the 
church at Sterling, was at Sycamore two 
years, presiding elder of the Freeport dis- 
trict four years, and for a year and a half 
was pastor of the Western Avenue church, 
Chicago. While there his health failed and 
he was forced to resign, in 1883. Going to 
Biddle county. South Dakota, he opened 
up a farm and engaged in agricultural pur- 
suits. He found no church facilities for the 
people of that locality, the young folks were 
desecrating the Sabbath, and he organized 
churches and held services around at differ- 
ent settler's cabins. When it became 
known that he was also a physician, he was 
forced into the practice of medicine again. 
He took a great interest in the political 
affairs of the territory, was a delegate to the 
constitutional convention, and chairman of 
the committee on public schools and school 
lands, embodied in the organic law of the 
state the best provisions for the safety of 
school funds of any state in the Union. 
From thiswise legislation the state now has 
two million dollars drawing seven per cent 
interest; in each township two sections have 
been set apart for school purposes, and such 
safe guards thrown around the school funds 
as will prevent loss by dishonest officials. 
The credit of this is almost wholly due to 
the efforts of Dr. More, and it almost seems 
that he was sent by Providence to the terri- 
tory for that purpose. 

On leaving Dakota, December 23, 1886, 
Dr. More returned to Margaretville, Dela- 
ware county. New York, where he engaged 
in various commercial enterprises until 
1890, when he returned to Ogle county. 
He has since served as pastor of the Meth- 
odist church at Forreston for three years, 
but is now living retired in Polo, where he 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



I 1 r 



has renewed old friendships. He has ever 
taken a prominent part in local politics, 
especially in all that is conducive to the 
welfare of the city, and being elected alder- 
man in 1S91, he immediately made his in- 
fluence felt, as he had done in other towns 
where his lot had been cast. He was the 
chief factor in securing the local prohibition 
at Sycamore while residing there, and the 
city council of Polo soon realized that im- 
provements must be made in the streets and 
sidewalks. The Doctor was instrumental 
in establishing the street grade and park 
system which has made Polo one of the 
neatest little cities of its size in the state. 
He was appointed engineer and superin- 
tendent of public works, and for a nominal 
salary has given many days of valuable time 
to surveying and grading the streets, etc., 
since 1895. 

On the 2 1st of January, 1857, in Polo, 
Dr. More was united in marriage with Miss 
Harriet E. Frisbee, also a native of Ro.x- 
bury, Delaware county. New York, and a 
daughter of Rev. George and Maria (Smith) 
Frisbee. Her father, who was also a 
Methodist Episcopal minister, was born in 
Rensselaerville, New York, March 23, 1796, 
and died at Mt. Morris, Illinois, November 
4, 1855. He came west in 1846 by way of 
canal and lakes, having a son who had 
located at Buffalo Grove four years previ- 
ously. After spending one year in Mt. 
Morris, Rev. Frisbee took up his residence 
in Buffalo township, Ogle county. His 
first wife had died in 1853, and he subse- 
quently married again and returned to Mt. 
Morris, where his last days were passed. 
The genealogical record of the Frisbee family 
is as follows: Edward Frisbee, of Brad- 
ford, Massachusetts, had twins, Ebenezer 
and Silence, who were born at that place 



September 5, 1673. Ebenezer was married 
at Bradford, April 21, 1703, to Hannah 
Page, and their first born was Ebenezer, 
who was born there April 14, 1704, and was 
married at the same place, December 24, 
1731, to Silence Brackett. Triplets were 
born to them, April 2.S, 1736, and one of 
these, Benjamin, married Margaret Holley, 
by whom he had nine children. Benjamin 
Frisbee, the grandfather of Mrs. More, 
was the fifth in order of birth in this fam- 
ily. He was born in Sharon, Connecticut, 
August 17, 1768, and died in Roxbury, 
New York, February 18, 1841. He was 
married about 1790, to Ruth Dolph, who 
was born in Wethersfield, Connecticut, 
April 18, 1 77 1, and died in Roxbury, New 
York, May 8, 1835. Rev. George Frisbee, 
Mrs. More's father, was the second child in 
their family. The first to come to the new 
world was Bathazar and Alice De Wolf, 
who settled in the Connecticut Valley. 
They became the parents of several chil- 
dren, among whom was Edward, who was 
born in 1642. To Edward De Wolf and 
his wife Rebecca was born Charles, 1673 
(died 1 731), who married Prudence White. 
Of their nine children, Joseph, the young- 
est, was born in 17 17 and was killed during 
the French and Indian war, before Louis- 
burgh, in 1757. In 1737 he had married 
Tabitha Johnson, and the youngest of their 
three children was Abda, who also entered 
the Colonial army in the French and In- 
dian war, as did several of his cousins. It 
was at this time that the name was changed 
by these young men, who considered it too 
Frenchy, although it had been born by En- 
glish-speaking people for several genera- 
tions. They adopted the name of D'olph 
or Dolph. After his return from the war, 
Abda Dolph went to New Hayen, Connecti- 



336 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



cut, where he was married March i6, 1766, 
to Mary Coleman, who was born March 4, 
1745, a daughter of Nathaniel and Ruth 
Coleman. Their daughter, Ruth Dolph, was 
born April 18, 1771, and was married Feb- 
ruary 8, 1 79 1, to Benjamin Frisbee. One 
of the eight children born of this union was 
Rev. George Frisbee, Mrs. Mere's father. 

To Dr. More and wife were born five 
children, namely: Mary L. , who married 
George C. Marsh, secretary of the Gates 
Iron Works and a resident of Ravenswood, 
Chicago; George Frisbee, an expert elec- 
trician, now located at Denver, Colorado; 
Annie, who is clerk in the Sunday school 
missionary society of the Congregational 
church in Chicago; Faith, who is engaged 
in kindergarten work in the same city; and 
Pauline, who is studying in a kindergarten 
college in Chicago, and is also assisting in 
the Riverside public schools in kindergarten 
work. 

In political sentiment Dr. More is a 
stanch Prohibitionist and has always made 
his influence for good felt in every commu- 
nity in which he has made his home. He 
is a Knight Templar Mason and belongs to 
the blue lodge and chapter at Polo and the 
commandery at Di.xon. His circle of friends 
is only limited by his circle of acquaintances, 
and it is safe to say that no man in Ogle 
county is held in higher respect or esteem 
than Dr. More. 



REV. JOHN J. McCANN is the effi- 
cient pastor of the St. Mary's Catholic 
church, Oregon, Illinois. He was born in 
Providence, Rhode Island, October 25, 
1862, and is the son of George T. and Cath- 
erine (Wynne) McCann. His father was a 



native of Manchester, England, and came to 
the United States with his parents, the fam- 
ily locating in Providence, Rhode Island, 
where the parents later died. Felix Mc- 
Cann, the paternal grandfather, married 
Mary Coleman, whose father, Thomas Cole- 
man, was a colonel in the English army, and 
who was thrown from his horse and killed. 
Felix and Mary McCann were the parents 
of four children — John, James, Susannah 
and George T. , the latter being the father 
of our subject. By trade George T. McCann 
was a weaver, and a good one. He first 
came west on a prospecting tour, and for a 
time resided in Chicago, from which place 
he went to Aurora. In Aurora he first 
found employment in the woolen mills of 
Mr. Stolp, a factory that did a large and 
profitable business during the Civil war and 
for some years after. He had to abandon 
that business, however, on account of his 
health. This was, however, shortly before 
the war. He took his family east again, 
and resided in Providence, Rhode Island. 
During the latter part of the Civil war he 
enlisted, and was mustered into the service 
as a member of the First Rhode Island 
Light Artillery, and served until the close 
of the struggle. His brother James was 
all through the Rebellion, serving in a com- 
pany of heavy artillery from Rhode Island. 
He came west again in July, 1866, and lo- 
cated in Aurora, Illinois, where he yet re- 
sides, being foreman in one of the depart- 
ments of the Aurora Silver Plate Factory. 
Mrs. Catherine McCann was a native of 
Ireland, her parents dying in that country 
when she was a small child. She was the 
youngest of the family. To George T. and 
Catherine McCann nine children were born, 
five of whom are yet living — John J., our 
subject; Agnes, living with our subject; An- 




REV. JOHN J. McCANN. 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



339 



drew and George C, now residing in 
Chicago. 

Father McCann was but four years old 
when the family moved the second time to 
Aurora, Illinois. After attending the pub- 
lic school and being one year in the high 
school in that city, he entered St. Viateur's 
College, Bourbonnais, Illinois, in Septem- 
ber, 1877, where he remained five years in 
the study of the classics and philosophy. 
Leaving college, he studied theology and 
kindred sciences in St. Mary's Seminary, 
Baltimore, Maryland, finishing the regular 
course of clerical studies January 6, 188S, 
at which time he received ordination at the 
hands of Cardinal Gibbons. His first min- 
istry was as assistant pastor of St. James 
church, Chicago, where he remained four 
years, and was then at St. Phillips church, 
Chicago, for six months. Leaving Chicago, 
for a year and a half he was at St. Mary's 
church, Joliet, and for one year at St. 
Michael's church. Galena. He was then 
appointed pastor of the mission of Oregon, 
Polo and Forreston, by Archbishop Feehan. 
This was in November, 1S94. Since then 
he has annexed to his charge the Catholic 
missions at Byron and Ashton. He organ- 
ized the first Catholic congregation and 
built the first Catholic church at Byron, in 
1895. The mission at Oregon was organ- 
ized in 1850, by Rev. John Quigley, C. M., 
of LaSalle, who with other priests celebrat- 
ed mass in private houses, and in the court 
house until 1862, when they erected a small 
stone church in which services were held 
until the present fine church building was 
erected in 1891 by the Rev. D. B. Toomey. 
It is a large brick structure, with a seating 
capacity of five hundred, and will cost when 
completed twenty thousand dollars. The 
Oregon mission has about seventy families, 



that at Polo about sixty-five families, about 
forty families in Ashton, and about sixty 
families in Byron. They have services in 
each of these places once every two weeks. 
All the congregations are in a flourishing 
condition, and that at Polo have in contem- 
plation the erection of a church building. 
Father McCann is a zealous pastor and a 
hard worker in the interests of his people 
and Christianity. He is a man of marked 
ability and popular with all classes, with 
many friends and well-wishers throughout 
Ogle and adjoining counties. 



JOHN R. NETTZ is numbered ainong 
the thriving farmers of Grand Detour 
township, where he owns and operates a 
farm of one hundred and twenty acres of 
fine land. He is a native of Ogle county, 
and was born in Pine Creek township, 
October 26, 1853. His parents, Henry and 
Margaret (Smice) Nettz, are natives of 
Washington county, Maryland, his father 
being born in 1S16. By trade he was a 
carpenter, an occupation he followed until 
coming to Ogle county in 1S51. On his 
arrival here, he located in Pine Creek 
township, where he purchased land and en- 
gaged in farming in ct)nnection with his 
trade. When his sons became old enough 
he relinquished into their hands the manage- 
ment of the farm, and is now living a re- 
tired life. In politics he is a stanch Re- 
publican, and religiously is a member of the 
Christian church, being one of the original 
members of the church in Pine Creek town- 
ship. In his family were six children, five 
of whom are yet living. Thomas F. died 
in his twenty-first year. Otho J. is a farmer 
of Cass county, Iowa. Edward A. is living 
on the old home farm in Pine Creek town- 



340 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



ship. John R. is next in order of birth. 
Daniel B. and Samuel B. are twins. They 
reside in Monroe, Wisconsin. 

The subject of this sketch grew to man- 
hood on the home farm in Pine Creek town- 
ship, and was educated in the common 
school. He was reared to farm life, and 
until he attained his majority gave his time 
faithfully to his father. On arriving at 
man's estate, he worked on farms for wages 
for several years. On the 5th of August, 
1880, he was united in marriage with Miss 
Marthe Wragg, daughter of Peter and 
Nancy (Thompson) Wragg, of whom further 
memtion is made in the sketch of John B. 
Wragg, on another page of this work. By 
this union two children have been born, a 
son and daughter, George M., and Cora M. 
both of whom are at home. 

After his marriage Mr. Nettz cultivated 
a rented farm in Woosung township for two 
years, after which he rented what is known 
as the Hershey farm in Pine Creek town- 
ship, where he remained ten years. In 
1S93 he purchased his present farm, which 
is located on sections 5 and 14, Grand 
Detour township. During the same year 
he erected a line barn and remodeled the 
dwelling house, sine which time he has made 
other permanent and valuable improve- 
ments. 

For the past si.\ years Mr. Nettz has 
served as school director of his district, and 
in September, 1897, was elected road com- 
missioner, which office he is at present fill- 
ing. In politics he is a Republican, his 
first presidential vote having been cast for 
Rutherford B. Hayes, in 1876. He is a 
worthy member of the Pine Creek Christian 
church, of which body his wife is also a 
member. His success in life is largely due 
to his own industry, integrity and business 



ability. Both he and his wife are held in 
high esteem, and they have many rfiends 
in Ogle county, especially in Pine Creek, 
Woosung and Grand Detour townships, 
where their entire lives have been spent. 



WILLIAM WATTS, deceased, who 
resided on section 23, Pine Creek 
township, belonged to that sturdy class of 
pioneers who left comfortable homes in the 
south and east and braved the hardships of 
frontier life and succeeded in transforming a 
wild country into one of the most produc- 
tive countries in the known world. He was 
a native of Washington county, Maryland, 
born January 29, 18 18, and is the son of 
Thomas and Sarah (Knudson) Watts, the 
forn^.er an Englishman by birth, and the 
latter born in Washington county, Maryland. 
In his youth Thomas Watts learned the 
carpenter's trade, but later engaged in 
farming, an occupation in which he con- 
tinued throughout the remainder of his life. 
He never came west, and he and his wife 
both lived in Maryland. They were the 
parents of the following named children — 
John, Nancy, Rachel, Sarah, Joseph, Eliza- 
beth, Thomas, William, Frisby and Abra- 
ham. 

In his native county \\'illiam Watts re- 
ceived his primary education in the district 
schools, attending the same as the opportu- 
nity was afforded him until he was seventeen 
years old, when he commenced to learn the 
carpenter's trade. After serving an ap- 
prenticeship of three years he worked as a 
journeyman in his native state until 1840, 
when, in company with George Swingley, 
Walter 1]. McCoy and John B. Ghana, he 
left Hagerstown on horseback and started 
west, traveling through Pennsylvania, Ohio 



THE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD. 



341 



and Indiana, taking about a month in mak- 
ing the trip to Ogle county. They went 
first through the southern part of IlHnois, 
passing through Springfield, the state capi- 
tal, which was then but a small village, ar- 
riving in due time at Mount Morris. 

On his arrival here, Mr. Watts com- 
menced to work at his trade, assisting in 
the erection of the first dwelling house in 
the place. After completing the frame of 
the dwelling house, he went to work on the 
old seminary building, which was then in 
course of construction, and continued on 
that work until it was completed in the 
spring of 1S42. He then purchased the 
claim of Major Hitt to a half section of land 
for which he paid five dollars per acre. The 
major who is the uncle of the present con- 
gressman is yet living in Ottawa, Illinois, at 
the age of ninety years. Although purchas- 
ing the land, Mr. Watts did not at once 
commence farming, but continued to work 
at his trade until 1850.