Old Courthouse Museum
103 West Cherry Street
Watseka, IL 60970-1524
The mother of our subject bore the maiden name Temperance Davey. Their union was celebrated July 23, 1837. Mr. Pate was reared as a landscape gardener. He emigrated to America about 1832, and about five years afterward returned to England, but in 1840 again came to this country, locating in Galena, Ill. His death there occurred, September 1, 1856. The mother of our subject was born in Winkley, England, in 1804, and is still living, her home being at Niagara Falls. While the writer was in Wellington Mrs. Pate was visiting her son Alexander. She is a well-preserved old lady, her years resting lightly upon her. Three children of the family are yet living: Davey, a lumber merchant, is married and resides in Chicago; Alexander of this sketch; and Sarah, wife of G. D. Belden, a real-estate dealer of Niagara Falls, N. Y.
The boyhood days of our subject were spent in his native city, and his education was acquired in the common schools, being greatly supplemented by self-culture. When he started out in life for himself he had no capital except the talents with which nature had endowed him, but he determined to win success and has carried out his resolution. It was in the following way that he came to locate in this county: He left Galena and made his way to Onarga, hoping to secure employment with Uncle Billy Pearson, but when he reached his destination he found that Mr. Pearson was about to close his business at that place on account of the blasting of his crops by the early frosts, and seek a home elsewhere. This was in 1863. Although disappointed in this direction, Mr. Pate determined to make the best of his situation and seek employment of some kind. His knowledge of bookkeeping was not very advanced, but his brother, who had pursued a course of study in Bryant & Stratton's Business College, gave him a few instructions and he secured the position of accountant with W. M. Coney, of Watseka, with whom he remained from 1863 to 1871, a fact which indicates his faithfulness to his employer. This was the beginning of what has proved a successful business career.
During the summer of 1871, the Chicago & Eastern Illinois railroad was under process of construction and the contractors working in this territory had been purchasing supplies of Mr. Coney. On one occasion when Mr. Coney was in Chicago, a contractor came in to the store and said to our subject: "Pate, why do you not establish a point of supplies south of Milford?" On the return of Mr. Coney, Mr. Pate suggested the idea and they resolved to put it into execution. They drove to the present site of Wellington, upon which at that time not a habitation of any kind was to be seen. On Monday, the following day, Mr. Pate was on the ground with a load of lumber hauled from Watseka, and the next day with a load of goods. A small frame shanty, 16x32 feet, was at once erected and the first night spent there our subject slept in the unroofed building. He had his gun, and his only companion was his faithful dog. He was placed in charge of the new store as a partner of Mr. Coney and for about twelve years, or until 1883, the business connection was continued, when Mr. Pate purchased his partner's interest and assumed entire control at Wellington. For twenty years these two gentlemen had been connected in business and their relations were always the most pleasant. In the fall of 1871 they had erected a one-story frame store building, 50x20 feet, opposite the present site, and in the following summer built a two-story building, 100x25 feet. In February, 1888, they met with a heavy loss, their building being burned to ashes. The fire, however, was hardly quenched when plans were made for the erection of the beautiful brick store which Mr. Pate today occupies. This building is 46x110 and is filled with a full and complete line of both staple and fancy goods such as are to be found in a general merchandise store. This is one of the largest establishments in the county. The volume of business done by Mr. Pate in 1891 reached $40,000. He is also the senior member of the firm of Pate & Norton, grain dealers, who, in 1891, handled two hundred and fifty thousand bushels of grain. He is also interested in land in Dakota and in Crawford and Iroquois Counties, Ill.
On the 11th of May, 1875, Mr. Pate wedded Miss Mary E. Wilson, daughter of J. B. and Eliza (Hickman) Wilson. Unto them have been born two daughters: Gertrude, who attended school in Wellington, is pursuing a classical course in Lake Forest Seminary. She possesses considerable musical talent. Lydia, the younger, is at home. The family is one of prominence in this community and its members rank high in social circles. Mr. Pate cast his first Presidential vote for Gen. U. S. Grant, whom he had many times met in Galena, and has since been a stalwart supporter of Republican principles. For six years he was a member of the Board of School Directors and a this writing is Clerk. He has been a liberal donor to all benevolences and has contributed freely towards the erection of all the church edifices in Wellington. From no enterprise calculated to prove of public benefit does he withhold his aid, but gives freely to all. His success in life has been remarkable, yet it has been all won through his business ability, sagacity and well-directed efforts. His own labors have brought him the handsome competence which is today his, and he certainly deserves great credit for his prosperous and upright career.
IRWIN W. BAKER, one of the large land-owners of the county, now resides on section 28, Ash Grove Township. As he is widely and favorably known throughout the community, we feel assured that the record of his life will prove of interest to many of our readers, and gladly give it a place in this history. A native of the Hoosier State, he was born in Parke County, Ind., October 14, 1831. The family is of German descent and was founded in America by the grandfather of our subject. The father, David Baker, was a life-long farmer. He married Nancy Levick. Her death occurred in 1846, and his death occurred in 1849, leaving our subject an orphan when about eighteen years of age. David Baker had served in the War of 1812 under Gen. William Henry Harrison and was a stanch Whig in political sentiment. The family numbered seven children, three of whom arc yet living, but the eldest, George, is now deceased; John is a farmer on Silver Island, Ind.; Irwin is the next younger; David is an agriculturist of Fountain County, Ind.; Lewis, who served in the Thirty-first Indiana Infantry, died in the army; and Jacob and Margaret are now deceased.
Mr. Baker whose name heads this record was reared to manhood upon the home farm. At his father's death he was thrown upon his own resources and started out in life for himself with his share of the estate, $16. He began earning his own livelihood by chopping wood and making rails. All that he now possesses he has achieved through his own efforts and he may be truly called a self-made man. The autumn of 1862 witnessed his arrival in Illinois and for some years he worked as a farm hand. Previous to this he married Miss Elizabeth McConnell, born in Parke County, Ind., August 4, 1836, their union being celebrated in Indiana in 1858.
After coming to this county, Mr. Baker settled on section 16, Ash Grove Township, where he purchased eighty acres of prairie land and twenty acres of timber. He has since here made his home, but his landed possessions have not remained the same. As the years passed his financial resources were increased, as the result of his industry and perseverance, and he made additional purchases until he now owns three hundred and sixty-six acres in one body and four hundred and eighty acres elsewhere. For several years he has been engaged in general farming and stock-raising, but recently he has purchased a good home in Cissna Park, and will remove thither soon and retire from active business life. He was instrumental in establishing the Farmers' Elevator at Goodwine and is now one of its Directors. This has proved of incalculable benefit to the farmers of the community.
The Baker family numbers the following children: David, who is engaged in merchandising in California; John who operates the old home farm section 23, Ash Grove Township, married Louisa Wood; Wallace, who wedded Lillie Geddes, resides near his brother; Nancy Jane is the wife of James Morris, of St. Louis; William died at the age of twenty-three; Isaac Clinton wedded Mollie Stump and is a resident farmer of Ash Grove Township; Fred and Clarence are still with their parents; James died in his third year.
As we before stated, Mr. Baker started out in life for himself with a capital of only $16, but good management and well-directed efforts have brought him prosperity. Whatever he undertakes he carries forward to completion, and to that quality of his nature his success my be attributed in no small measure. He is now numbered among the wealthy citizens of this community. He cast his first Presidential vote for Scott, then supported Fremont and was a Republican until 1880, since which time he has affiliated within the Democratic party. He takes considerable interest in political affairs but has never been an office-seeker. The county finds in him a public-spirited and progressive citizen, and he has done much for its upbuilding in the thirty years of his residence here.
JAMES M. STREAN, who is engaged in farming on section 30, Milford Township, has the honor of being a native of this county, and his entire life has here been passed. He was born on his father's farm, about three miles north of Milford, on the 21st of October, 1847. His parents, David and Elizabeth V. (Axtell) Strean, were both natives of Pennsylvania. In 1834 they bade good-bye to their old home and started from the Keystone State to Illinois, making the journey by wagon. At length they reached this county and settled in Milford Township. They were among the earliest pioneers, having located here when almost all of the land was still in its primitive condition and when the settlements, which were few, were widely scattered.
In the Strean family were twelve children, as follows: Thomas Vennum, John Gilmore, Mary Margaret, James M., Nancy Jane, Caroline, Kirk, Enoch. Casper Campbell, Gilbert, Grace, and one who died in infancy. The two eldest sons were soldiers of the late war. Thomas Vennum served for one year among the boys in blue, and John Gilmore enlisted at the first call for troops, serving three months. On the expiration of that time he re-enlisted and was within his regiment at the front for a year.
We now take up the personal history of our subject, who has spent his entire life in this county. He was reared to manhood under the parental roof, the days of his boyhood and youth being quietly passed. He followed the plow and harrow through the summer months and in the winter season, when the farm work was over, he attended the public schools, acquiring a good English education.
It was on the 4th of September, 1870, that Mr. Strean led to the marriage altar Miss Ruth A. Mead, daughter of James R. and Huldah A. (Coffin) Mead. A family of six children has been born of their union and four are yet living, namely: Hattie Jane, born July 14, 1871, died in her fourth year; George Washington, born February 2, 1873: Eva May, April 20, 1875; Myrtle Ottalean, September 28, 1880; and Jessie, who completes the family, born November 12, 1885. The fifth child died in infancy.
Mr. Strean is now engaged in general farming. Since attaining his majority he has followed the occupation to which he was reared and is a well-known agriculturist of Milford Township. In politics he is a supporter of Republican principles and keeps well posted on the issues of the day, both political and otherwise. Reading, experience and observation have made him a well-informed man. He is a worthy representative of an honored pioneer family and throughout the community he is held in high regard.
JOHN K. JUDY, a member of the firm of Judy & Ours, dealers in general merchandise of Goodwine, has carried on operations in this place about a year, but in that time has already built up an excellent trade, which is constantly increasing. He occupies a store 60x60 feet, and the rooms are well stocked with everything found in his line. He also keeps lumber and building material, and does strictly cash business. He has the confidence of all with whom he has been brought in contact, and his courteous treatment and fair dealing have won him high regard.
Mr. Judy was born in what is now Grant County, W. Va., November 22, 1850, and is a son of Henry and Elizabeth (Kimball) Judy. Mrs. Judy's father was killed by a rebel during the late war, although only a private citizen. The father of our subject died in 1852, after which his widow became the wife of John Ours. Her death occurred in 1877. Six children were born of the first marriage: Hiram, who now resides in Virginia; Henson, who served the Union cause in the army in West Virginia and is now a farmer of Iroquois County; Noah, who served in the Home Guards during the late war; John K., of this sketch; and Hannah and Mary, both deceased. Three children were born of the second marriage: Wellington, who is now in partnership with our subject; and Indiana and Rebecca, both deceased. Their father was also a member of the State Guards and was killed in a fight about nine miles from his home.
The subject of this sketch was reared in the midst of war scenes. His native county was crossed again and again by rebels and it was almost impossible for the family to keep anything to eat in the house. He could not attend school under these circumstances and so gave his time to farm work. In 1870, Mr. Judy came to Illinois and for some time worked as a farm hand. He then engaged in agricultural pursuits for himself with good success until about four years ago. He has twice visited his old home in Virginia since coming to Illinois, one of the trips being occasioned by the death of his mother. On leaving the farm, Mr. Judy embarked in merchandising in Claytonville, and carried on operations in that place for three years, after which he came to Goodwine, and has since been one of its leading business men.
A marriage ceremony performed in 1872 united the destinies of Mr. Judy and Miss Abigail Gilbert, who was born in Fountain County, Ind., and is a daughter of Monroe Gilbert, one of the early settlers. Unto them have been born five children, three sons and two daughters: Hannah E., Eva, Arthur, Franklin and Gertie. The eldest is a native of West Virginia, and the others were born in this county.
Both Mr. and Mrs. Judy are members of the United Brethren Church. They are people of sterling worth, whose many excellencies of character have won them the high respect of a large circle of friends and acquaintances. In politics, Mr. Judy is a Republican, having been a stalwart supporter of that party since he cast his first Presidential vote for Gen. U. S. Grant. He has been a delegate to the county and senatorial conventions, and is now serving as Postmaster of Goodwine. He is a man of excellent business ability, progressive and enterprising, and is rapidly winning his way upward.
The first sixteen years of his life our subject spent in the State of his nativity, and then accompanied his parents on their removal to Indiana. Three years later, in 1868, he came to Illinois, locating on a farm in Stockland Township, Iroquois County, belonging to his uncle, Jacob Harman, who died on the 17th of February, 1885, and left to his nephew five hundred and sixty acres of land. Upon that farm our subject resided until 1890, and in connection with its cultivation and improvement he engaged in buying, selling and raising fine grades of cattle. At length he left the farm and went to Milford where he now makes his home, but he still supervises his landed interests.
On the 29th of October, 1872, Mr. Harman was joined in wedlock with Miss Sarah M. Jones, daughter of John H. and Hannah Jones, prominent citizens of Stockland Township. Unto them has been born one child, a son, Leroy, born on the 12th of August, 1876. Mr. and Mrs. Harman have a beautiful home in Milford, which is supplied with all the comforts of life, and is the abode of hospitality, its doors being ever thrown open for the reception of their many friends.
In his political affairs our subject is a Republican, having supported that party since he attained his majority, and socially is a member of Milford Lodge No. 168, A. F. & A. M. He is a public-spirited and progressive citizen, and takes an active interest in all that pertains to the welfare of the community, its upbuilding and its advancement. His aid is never sought in vain by any worthy enterprise, and Milford finds in him a valued resident. He is a popular gentleman, widely and favorably known throughout the community.
JOSEPH G. WALLACE, one of the prominent citizens of the county, who is now living a retired life in Buckley, was born on the 1st of June, 1841, in Downer's Grove, Du Page County, Ill., and is one of a family of ten children, whose parents were John and Mehitable (Harrington) Wallace. It was in 1837 that John Wallace came to Illinois and purchased an eighty-acre tract of wild land in Du Page County, where he began the development of a farm. Having thus prepared a home, he was joined by his family three years later and there the children were reared to manhood and womanhood. The parents are still living on the homestead where they first located. They are highly respected people, whose excellencies of character have won them many friends. Of their family five are yet living, namely: J. Austin, Josephine G., James Richard, Emma and Alice.
Upon his father's farm the subject of this sketch spent the days of his boyhood and youth. No event of special importance occurred until July, 1862, when, having attained his majority, he responded to the country's call for troops. Prompted by patriotic impulses, he joined Company B, One hundred and Fifth Illinois Infantry, and faithfully served as a valiant soldier for three years, receiving his discharge on the 12th of June, 1865. The first battle in which he took part was Resaca, where the Brigade Commander, W. T. Ward, was wounded, and Gen. Benjamin Harrison took command of the same and continued on to Atlanta and to the sea. Mr. Wallace participated in all the battles of his regiment on the Atlanta Campaign and on the famous march to the sea. The march having been completed, he witnessed the Grand Review at Washington, D. C. Though in many engagements, he was never wounded or taken prisoner.
In 1865, Mr. Wallace went to Dwight, Ill., and resided upon a farm in that locality until 1874. March 25, of that year, he married Miss Jennie Potter, daughter of John and Lucinda (Blanchard) Potter, of Dwight, Ill. Their family numbered seven children, six of whom are yet living. Oscar died at the age of five years; Orson married Miss Rachel Porter; Caroline L. is the wife of William E. Fenn; Mary Louise is the wife of Frank Benjamin; Cynthia Jane wedded Joseph G. Wallace;. Jerusha Violetta is the wife of Eugene Flagler; and John B. married Miss Grace Cone.
After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Wallace spent a few months in Elliott, Ill., and then removed to a farm of two hundred acres, which he had purchased a short time previous, about two miles northwest of Buckley. During his residence thereon, he purchased and sold other land, but he still owns one hundred and sixty acres of his original farm and it yields to him a good income. In addition to the cultivation of his land, he paid considerable attention to stock-raising, making a specialty of the breeding of horses and hogs, but he never had occasion to ship, as his stock was so well known throughout this locality that when he was ready to sell he found a market at home. His horses were of the celebrated Norman breed and he raised the Poland-China hogs.
In his political sentiments, Mr. Wallace is a Republican. He keeps himself well informed on the issues of the day and on all current events, but has never been an office-seeker, preferring to devote his entire time and attention to his business interests, in which he has met with excellent success. Mrs. Wallace is a member of the Methodist Church. In May, 1891, our subject left the farm and removed to Buckley, purchasing a fine residence, in which he and his wife, a most estimable lady, make their home. They are enjoying a well-earned rest and friends who hold them in high esteem for their sterling worth. Socially, he belonged to Will Carter Post, G. A. R., of Buckley.
KENDAL SHANKLAND, deceased, an honored early settler of Iroquois County, was a native of the Buckeye State. He was born in Eaton, Ohio, on the 1st of July, 1825, his parents being David and Sarah (Crawford) Shankland. Both were natives of Kentucky, and were of Virginian stock. In 1829, they settled near what is now West Lebanon, Ind. Their son attended the public schools of those early days, where educational advantages were very limited, but by extensive, reading and self-culture he became well informed. He was reared to agricultural pursuits.
On the 14th of February, 1848, Mr. Shankland was married in Boone County, Ind., to Miss Amanda Harris, a native of Marion County, Ind., born in 1827, and a daughter of Benjamin and Mahala Harris. Mr. Shankland continued to reside in Warren County, Ind., until 1854, when he removed to Illinois, and settled in what is now the township of Prairie Green, Iroquois County. There he invested his capital, amounting to $1000, in land, and engaged in farming. In course of time he added by purchase to the original tract, until at his death he was the owner of one thousand acres of valuable land, having become quite wealthy.
Five children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Shankland, as follows: Benjamin F., the eldest, wedded Miss Nancy R. Miskimen, and is and the President of the Watseka Republican Company, and the editor of the paper; George W., the next younger, married Miss Susan Seager, and is a farmer residing on the old homestead; Florence is the wife of George L. Miller, and is engaged in agricultural pursuits in McPherson County, Kan.; David wedded Miss Mary Cox, and is a farmer residing near Fowler, Ind.; Laura is the wife of C. B. Smalley, of Benton County, Ind.
Early in life Mr. Shankland was a Whig, and when the Republican party sprang into existence he was one of its organizers in his county. He ever afterwards maintained his connection with it, and was recognized as an influential member. He helped to organize Iroquois County into townships, and for about twenty years represented Prairie Green Township on the County Board, of which he was several times Chairman, and one of its most influential working members. His death occurred at his home August 12, 1882. His wife survives him, and has since married Mr. Gill. She is a member of the Christian Church, and her home is in Anderson, Ind.
FRED H. LUECKE is a wide-awake and enterprising young farmer of Ash Grove Township, residing on section 17. He claims Will County, Ill., as the place of his birth, which occurred on the 11th of November, 1861. His father, Fred F. Luecke, was born in Germany, November 19, 1842, and is the son of Frederick Luecke, who was born and reared in Hesse and followed the carpenter's trade. He married Henrietta Meyer, and in 1847 sailed from Bremen to New Orleans, where he arrived after a voyage of eight weeks and three days. He then proceeded up the Mississippi River to Peru, Ill., where he hired teams, by which he made his way to Chicago. After two years spent in Wheeling, Cook County, he removed to Crete, Will County, where he died 1851, at the age of fifty-one years. His widow still living and makes her home with her son at the age of ninety-one.
Fred F. Luecke, the father of our subject, came with his parents to America when about six years of age, and in Washington, Ill., he learned the shoemaker's trade, which he followed for a number of years in Will County. He was married in Will County to Mary Bahlman, who died in that county in 1876, leaving six children, namely: Fred, whose name heads this record; Henry, who resides on a farm in Will County; Frank, who died in 1889, at the age of twenty-two years; Mary, wife of Charles Waterman, of Will County; Sophia, wife of John C. Wilkening, of Ash Grove Township; and Louisa at home. The children were all born and reared in Will County and acquired good educations. After the death of his first wife Mr. Luecke married Ellen Schreeck, and unto them have been born six children, of whom Emma, Mollie and Lena are now living. Millie, William and Albert are all deceased. Mr. Luecke and his family are all faithful members of the Lutheran Church. He takes a prominent part in church work, and is a charitable and benevolent man, who gives freely of his means to all enterprises calculated to prove of public benefit. In early life he was a Democrat, but is now a Republican. When he started out in life for himself he had only $150, but by good business ability, perseverance and industry he has worked his way upward to a position among the substantial farmers of Will County, and is a highly respected citizen.
Under the parental roof Fred Luecke, whose name heads this record, spent his boyhood days and was educated in both the English and German languages. On leaving school he worked on the home farm and in the employ of others until 1880, when he came to Iroquois County, and for three years was in the employ of F. Breymeyer. He then spent the three succeeding years of his life on the old homestead, in Will County, and in 1887 located on his present farm, which has since been his home. There were then no buildings upon it except a shanty and a small stable, but it is now one of the valuable farms of the community. He has erected a substantial dwelling an good outbuildings, which stand as monuments to his thrift and enterprise. In addition to the cultivation of his land, he is also engaged in stock-raising, breeding fine Jersey cattle for dairy purposes.
On the 10th of February, 1887, in Will County, Mr. Luecke was united in marriage with Miss Sophia Wilkening, a native of Washington Township, that county, and a daughter of Conrad and Mary (Tegtmeyer) Wilkening. Two children have been born of their union: Arthur, born March 20, 1888; and Walter, on the 19th of June, 1890. The parents are both members of St. Paul's Lutheran Church, of Woodworth, and take an active part in its growth and upbuilding.
In political sentiment, Mr. Luecke is a Republican, and has frequently served his party as a delegate to its conventions. He is now serving as Assessor of Ash Grove Township and as School Treasurer, and is a member of the Buckley Insurance Company. In every enterprise calculated to advance time best interests of the community, he is found in the front rank, and his aid is never withheld when solicited in behalf of any interest calculated to promote the general welfare. During his residence here he has won a large circle of friends and acquaintances, and has secured the high regard of all with whom business or pleasure has brought him in contact.
ALBERT P. HURD is one of the worthy citizens that Michigan has furnished to Lovejoy Township. He now owns and operates a fine farm of four hundred and thirty acres, his home being on section 3. He was born near Adrian, Lenawee County, Mich., on the 19th of December, 1833. His parents, Allen D. and Hannah (Hooper) Hurd, were both natives of the Empire State, where they spent their childhood days. About 1830 they emigrated to Michigan, and in that State made their home for more than twenty years, after which they came to Illinois locating in Iroquois County, on the 1st of July, 1852. They settled on a farm four miles south of the village of Milford, in Lovejoy Township, Mr. Hurd having entered eighty acres of land. He also bought a tract of seventy acres of rich prairie and thirty acres of timber, making in all a farm of one hundred and fifty-seven acres. To its cultivation and improvement he devoted his energies.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Hurd was born a family of six children: John Henry, the eldest, married Miss Amy Johns, daughter of William Johns, and they reside in Crescent Township, near Woodland. They became the parents of six children, four of whom are living. Albert P., of this sketch, is the next younger. Lydia Augusta is the wife of Joseph Pruitt, a resident farmer of Lovejoy Township, by whom she has eight children, all living. Sarah Olivia is the wife of Ezekiel Probus, a resident farmer of Mitchell County, Kan. Eight children were born unto them, of whom seven are surviving. Frances was the next younger, but her death occurred in early childhood. Charles Leslie, the youngest, married Linda Armstrong, by whom he has five children, four sons and a daughter. With his family he resides in Cloud County, Kan.
In the State of his nativity, Albert Hurd quietly passed his, boyhood and youth in the usual manner of farmer lads, and on his parents' removal to Illinois he accompanied them. Since that time he has made his home in Iroquois County. On the 2d of March, 1869, he led to the marriage altar Miss Esther Jemima Heffner, who was born near La Fayette, Ind., July 3, 1850, and is a daughter of Joseph and Esther Heffner, the former a native of Virginia, and the latter of the Keystone State. Mr. and Mrs. Hurd began their domestic life upon the old homestead in Lovejoy Township where they have since resided. They have a pleasant home, are hospitable people, and their friends throughout the community are many. In his political affiliations, Mr. Hurd is a Republican, and has long supported that party. The cause of education finds in him a warm friend, and he has frequently served in the office of School Trustee.
The beautiful and desirable farm which is the property of our subject comprises four hundred and thirty acres of arable land, which is under a high state of cultivation, and is well improved with good buildings. The rich and fertile fields yield to him a golden tribute, and everything about the place indicates the supervision of a careful and thrifty manager. He has all the latest improved machinery, the place is complete in all its appointments, and the Hurd homestead is known as a model farm throughout the county. Our subject formerly gave considerable attention to stock-raising, but now devotes his energies principally to growing wheat and corn. He is a man of good business ability, and by his well-directed efforts perseverance and good management has won a place among the substantial agriculturists of Iroquois County.
In 1827 he moved to Fountain County, Ind., and seven years later came to Iroquois County, where he spent the remainder of his life. March 12, 1839, Robert Nilson was married in Milford Township to Miss Susan L. Wagner, who was born September 25, 1815, in Butler County, Ohio, and in 1837 became a resident of Iroquois County.
Mr. and Mrs. Nilson began their domestic life on a farm about four miles north of the village of Milford, where Mrs. Nilson still makes her home. The land was wild and destitute of improvements, but the young pair worked hard and judiciously invested their savings. Mr. Nilson became one of the most prosperous farmers of his community, owning at his death eleven hundred acres of valuable land. Aside from his own business interests he transacted a good deal of business for others, besides serving in public capacities for many years. For sixteen years he held the office of County Surveyor and for four years that of County Treasurer, proving a capable and trusty official. Politically, he was a life-long Democrat. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Nilson were born seven children, four sons and three daughters, as follows: Martha, Susan; Emma and Jacob, deceased; John, Eusebius and Sidney, who are represented elsewhere in this work.
After a well-spent life covering a period of sixty-three years, Mr. Robert Nilson was called to his final rest May 23, 1880. His death was deeply mourned, for he was tenderly beloved by his family, and held in the highest esteem by a large circle of friends and acquaintances. Just and honorable in his dealings, kind and charitable to the needy, he might truly be called one of Nature's noblemen.
Mrs. Nilson, though seventy-seven years of age, is quite active in body and mind. For over fifty years she has been a consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and her influence for good has been impressed upon the community where she has lived for so many years.
JOHN W. CUNNINGHAM, who is successfully engaged in farming in Onarga Township, owns an excellent farm, pleasantly located about two miles from Onarga. He is widely and favorably known in this community, and with pleasure we present to our readers this record of his life. A native of Canada, he was born in Montreal, May 10, 1840. His parents were Patrick and Esther Cunningham, and their family numbered six children, five of whom are yet living, as follows: and Esther. The father died when our subject was only three years old. His mother afterward married again, becoming the wife of William Hill, of Guelph, Canada, who died during the late war, having enlisted in the service as a member of a New York regiment. Three children were born unto them, George, Elizabeth and Jane. The mother died in Canada in June, 1890.
The subject of this sketch is also an honored veteran of the late war. On attaining his majority he responded to the country's call for troops, enlisting in April, at the first call for volunteers at Columbus, Ohio. He became a member of Company C, Twelfth Ohio Regiment, in which he served five months and six days.
After his return home Mr. Cunningham was united in marriage February 14, 1864, with Miss Rachel E. Shaw, daughter of Joseph S. and Eleanor G. (Beaty) Shaw. Five children have been born of the union of this worthy couple; three sons and two daughters, the eldest of whom, James O., was born November 30, 1864; Emory L., born September 6, 1866, married Miss Sadie McGraff, and now resides in Eureka, Ill.; Eva May, born March 3, 1868, is the wife of Clarence Hollister, who is engaged in agricultural pursuits in Onarga Township; Elma E., born May 8, 1870, is the wife of Sherman T. Wilcox, a resident of Eureka, Ill.; and John, born November 6, 1873, is still under the parental roof.
It was in 1868 that Mr. Cunningham made his first purchase of land in this county. He bought an eighty-acre tract on section 26, Onarga Township, and afterward purchased another eighty acres on the same section. Subsequently he bought one hundred and sixty acres of land on section 27, and then selling his land on section 26 he bought land on sections 19, 20 and 29, amounting to two hundred and sixty-five acres. His landed possessions now aggregate about four hundred and twenty-five acres, the greater part of which is under a high state of cultivation. His well-tilled fields and the many improvements upon the place indicate his thrift and enterprise. His home is a beautiful and commodious residence, tastefully furnished and supplied with all the comforts of life. The farm is considered one of the finest in this locality, and Mr. Cunningham is regarded as one of the practical and progressive agriculturists.
Our subject, his wife and four children are members of the Christian Church, and in politics he is a supporter of the Prohibition party. The cause of temperance finds in him a stanch advocate and he is a warm friend to every interest calculated to upbuild and improve the community. The township finds in him a valued citizen. His possessions have been acquired through his own efforts, and by steadily working his way upward he has attained a position of wealth and affluence. In the community he has formed a wide acquaintance, and is a highly respected citizen.
WILLIAM DIGGLE, a prominent citizen of Watseka, has the honor of being a native of Illinois, his birth occurring in Peoria County, October 16, 1862. He is a son of James and Sarah (Rigley) Diggle, both of whom were born in England. The mother departed this life in 1882. The father, who was born June 18, 1811, still survives, and makes his home with our subject. He has been a resident of this State since 1847, first settling in Peoria. He lived in Woodford County about twenty-one years.
In the family of four children, our subject was the third in order of birth. He received the advantages of the education afforded by the common schools, and passed his boyhood on the farm. At the age of twenty-one, starting in life for himself, he engaged in farming, which occupation he followed for a period of about eight years. He then removed to Watseka, where he bought an interest in the tile works in January, l891. This business had been established in 1887 by Martin & Sweeney, the latter retiring when Mr. Diggle entered the firm, it since being known as Martin & Diggle. They do a large business and have a sale for all the tile and brick they can manufacture. Mr. Diggle is a man of fine business ability, as is evinced by the success of the factory since he has engaged in that business. He is upright and honorable in his commercial relations, and by this means has secured the respect and esteem of his fellow-citizens.
Our subject was united in marriage to Miss Rebecca Moore, a daughter of James Moore, who is a native of England, but has resided in Illinois since about 1845. Their marriage was celebrated November 1, 1882. To this worthy couple have been born three children: Bert, Elva and William.
Mr. Diggle is a member of the Masonic order, belonging to Watseka Lodge No. 446, A. F. & A. M., and also of the Patriotic Sons of America. Politically, his vote is cast for the Republican nominees, and he is a warm supporter of that party. His religious principles and opinions accord with those of the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which he is a member and to which he gives his support. Though still a young man, Mr. Diggle has achieved a remarkable measure of success, and by his upright business methods and genial way has won for himself a host of friends. His pleasant home is the abode of hospitality, which is extended to a wide circle of acquaintances.
HARM FARDINAND, who is engaged in general farming on section 6, Milford Township, is one of the worthy German citizens of Iroquois County. He was born in Prussia March 19, 1845, and is the only surviving member of a family of ten children, whose parents, Christian and Tina (Loors) Fardinand, were natives of the same country as our subject. With his wife and two children, Harm, and Katie, now deceased, Christian Fardinand crossed the broad Atlantic in 1855, the voyage lasting voyage thirteen weeks and some days, and located near Peoria, Ill., where he resided for about ten years. He engaged in farming near Secor and El Paso. Subsequently he removed to a farm near Minonk.
The subject of this sketch spent the days of his childhood under the parental roof, and was trained in all departments of farm labor. He was a lad of ten years, when, with his parents, he crossed the Atlantic. After attaining his majority be was united in marriage, February 5, 1868, at Pontiac, Ill., with Miss Johanna Leenerts, daughter of Hi and Emma Leenerts. The lady was born in the same neighborhood as her husband, June 2, 1845, and when ten years of age left the Fatherland with her parents, who came to America, locating in Adams County, Ill. The family numbered seven daughters, of whom two are now deceased, Emma and Engel. Those still living are Johanna, Tillie, Lena, Heika and Susan.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Fardinand thirteen children have been born, of whom ten are yet living, viz.: Tina, born October 19, 1868; Emma, February 19, 1870; Katie, November 3, 1872; Engel, April 3, 1874; Johanna, April 21, 1876; Christian, March 24, 1878; Hi, August 14, 1880; Harm, August 11, 1883; Johann, February 28, 1885; and Peter, June 13, 1887. Katie, who was born October 1, 1871, died on the 6th of the same month; and Harm and Johann, twins, born February 14, 1882, lived only a few days.
In 1871 Mr. Fardinand removed with his family to Livingston County, locating on a farm about five miles east of Minonk, where he made his home for ten years. He then returned to Woodford County, where he spent the succeeding year of his life, after which he came to Iroquois County. Settling in Ash Grove Township he there engaged in agricultural pursuits for six years, after which he moved across the boundary line into Milford Township, and now operates what is known as the Dankas farm on section 6. He is a practical and progressive agriculturist, and by his enterprise, perseverance and good management, has secured a comfortable competence. In connection with general farming he raises considerable stock, owning two hundred and sixty acres of valuable land. For his success he deserves great credit, as it is due entirely to his own efforts. Himself and wife are both members of the Lutheran Church, and in politics he is a supporter of Democratic principles, but has never sought or desired the honors or emoluments of public office, preferring to devote his entire attention to his business interests.
REV. GEORGE BLANKEN, pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Buckley, was born in the kingdom of Hanover, Germany, December 7, 1850, and is a son of Henry and Margaret (Holsten) Blanken, both of whom were also natives of Germany. The mother died in that Country in 1861, and twenty years afterward Henry Blanken, in 1881, crossed the Atlantic to America, reaching Chicago, Ill., on the evening of the day on which President Garfield died. In the Blanken family were seven children, as follows: John, Margaret, Rebecca, George and Herman (twins), Henry and Anna. Herman died when three years of age, and Rebecca died in Sedalia, Mo.; but the others are all yet living. The father of this family died in Morgan County, Mo., in 1885, when about sixty-two years of age.
We now take up the personal history of our subject, who is one of the prominent citizens of this community. His education was acquired in the common schools of Germany, which he attended for seven and one-half years. Wishing to try his fortune in the United States, he bade goodbye to the Fatherland in 1867 and sailed for America. He made his fist location in Missouri, and worked as a farm hand in Morgan and La Fayette Counties. He also engaged in teaching school until the fall of 1872, when he began studying for the ministry, entering Concordia Seminary, an Evangelical Lutheran School in St. Louis, where he studied for two and one-half years. He then went to Springfield, Ill., and entered Concordia Seminary of that place, where he also studied about two and one-half years, graduating from that institution March 22, 1877. On the 2d of April following, he was ordained, Rev. G. A. Mueller, of Kankakee, officiating, assisted by Rev. F. Lindemann, of Campaign. He immediately accepted a charge in Buckley, Ill., and has since been the honored and efficient pastor at that place.
On February 27, 1878, Rev. Mr. Blanken was united in marriage with Miss Lydia Rabe, daughter of John F. and Dora (Oetting) Rabe. There were seven children born unto them, three sons and four daughters, six of whom are living, as follows: William, Matilda, Theodore, Clara, Walter and Lydia. Theodora, the fourth in order of birth, died February 28, 1887, at the age of one year, nine months and twenty-five days.
After coming to Buckley Mr. Blanken engaged in teaching in a private German school for seven years in connection with his preaching, but now devotes his entire time to the work of the ministry. He began with a congregation of sixteen members, but now has a membership of seventy-five, and a large attendance of strangers each Sunday. He is an able minister, and that he is esteemed and respected by his congregation is shown by his long-continued service in their midst. He is also held in high regard by the people of other denominations, and is one of the valued citizens of Buckley. In politics, he is independent.
CAPT. WILLIAM V. DOAN is one of the honored founders of Wellington, a man prominent in its history and in its upbuilding. He is now engaged in the hardware business as a member of the firm of Doan & Galloway. His life record, which we feel assured will prove of interest to many of our readers, is as follows: He was born in Wilmington, Clinton County, Ohio, on the 11th of March, 1838, and is the third in order of birth in a family of eight children whose parents were Elisha and Mary Ann (Ward) Doan. The father was a native of the Buckeye State, born August 19, 1806. His death occurred November 27, 1882, and his remains were interred in Sugar Creek Chapel Cemetery. His wife was born in Virginia, March 25, 1814, and died September 11, 1892. Of the five sons and three daughters born unto this worthy couple, six are yet living, the eldest of whom is William; Absalom W. is married and is a farmer of Black Hills, S. Dak.; Rebecca is the wife of Joseph Galloway, a merchant of Wellington, who is also engaged in farming; Lydia J. is the wife of J. W. Babb, an agriculturist residing in Cissna Park; Isaac H. is married and makes his home in Watseka; Jesse E., who completes the family, is a telegraph operator residing in New Mexico.
Capt. Doan, whose name heads this record, spent his boyhood days in the State of his nativity, upon the banks of a little stream known as Lytle's Creek. In the usual manner of farmer lads he was reared to manhood. His education was acquired in the common schools, and he afterward learned the trade of a carpenter and joiner. On attaining his majority he started out in life for himself with no capital save a pair of willing hands and an industrious disposition, but these essential qualities of success have brought him a well-deserved prosperity. As a companion and helpmate on life's journey he chose Miss Mary E. Rayburn, daughter of Samuel P. and Susanna (Stratton) Rayburn, their union being celebrated on the 20th of September, 1866. Her father, who was born Match 2, 1814, in Murfreesboro, Tenn., is yet living. When a lad of fourteen years he came with his widowed mother to Ohio, locating in Greene County. The lady whom he married is a native of Clinton County, Ohio, and was born on the 5th of March, 1822. Both Mr. and Mrs. Rayburn are adherents of the faith of the Society of Friends. Their family numbered four children, a son and three daughters, all of whom are yet living: Ann Eliza is the wife of W. Osborn, a resident of Columbus, Ohio; Laura B. is the wife of Peter A. Young, a mechanic of Wellington; and James W. resides in Columbus, Ohio. He was reared as a farmer but is a natural artist. The parents of this family came to Illinois in 1882 and are prominent and highly respected citizens of Wellington.
Mrs. Doan, who was the eldest child in the Rayburn family, was born in Greene County, Ohio, August 6, 1843. Her childhood days were spent in Xenia, Ohio, until twelve years of age when she removed to Clinton County. For two years prior to her marriage she successfully engaged in teaching. She is a lady of culture and refinement, who resides with grace over her pleasant home.
Mr. Doan was one of the boys in blue during the late war and faithfully served his country for three years and seven months. He enlisted at Wilmington, Ohio, August 8, 1862, as a member of Company C, Seventy-ninth Ohio Infantry, under Capt. I. B. Allen and Col. Kennett. A.W. Doan was Lieutenant Colonel and afterward became commanding officer of the regiment, which was organized at Camp Dennison, near Cincinnati, and from there sent to Covington, Ky., where the troops were concentrated to meet the rebels, who were expected to attack that city. At this point, Mr. Doan was afflicted with fever and forced to return home, but as soon as he was convalescent he rejoined his regiment at Bowling Green, Ky. The troops went to Nashville, Tenn., to act on guard duty and Mr. Doan was there appointed First Lieutenant of Company A, Fifteenth United States Colored Infantry, by order of the War Department at Washington, D. C. On the 7th of March, 1865, he was promoted to the Captaincy. Two companies were organized at Columbia, Tenn., and Capt. Doan's command was there armed. He was ordered with his troops to Shelbyville to finish recruiting the regiment and soon afterward was sent back to Nashville to finish recruiting service there. The regiment did guard duty in Nashville and vicinity for a long time and while there Capt. Doan received a twenty-day furlough and returned to his home. On again joining his company he reported to the Quarter Master-General, and received orders to go up the Cumberland River one hundred miles to guard Government employees who were engaged in lumbering. He remained about two months and while there the sad intelligence that President Lincoln was assassinated readied him. He was ordered back to Nashville, where he remained, doing guard duty until after the close of the war. He bore many of the hardships and trials of a soldier's life and has in after years suffered from the effects of his service, but he was ever found at his post of duty, faithfully performing any task allotted to him. He was honorably discharged in Nashville, Tenn., April 7, 1866 with the following testimonial from Col. William Inness, of the Fifteenth United States Colored Infantry: "Capt. W. V. Doan is an officer of great abilities and unexceptional character."
The Captain returned to his home, but after a short time went to Kansas, where he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of raw land. He then returned to Ohio, and in the winter of 1866 acted as United States Claim Agent. In the spring of 1867, after his marriage, he came to Illinois and located near Danville, and in the succeeding autumn came to Iroquois County. He erected the first dwelling in Wellington. The now flourishing towns in the southern part of Iroquois County had not then sprung into existence. Mr. Doan here located on the 11th of January, 1871, and began work at the carpenter's trade which he followed until August, 1872. He then entered the employ of Alexander Pate as salesman and book-keeper and remained with him for eighteen years, a fact which indicates his fidelity to the interests of his employer and also the confidence which Mr. Pate had in him. During nine years of that time he owned an interest in the hardware store conducted under the firm name of Doan & Young. Recently a change has occurred in the firm, which is now Doan & Galloway.
As before stated, Capt. Doan is one of the founders of Wellington and has aided in all of the enterprises which are calculated to upbuild the town and advance its best interests. He is recognized as one of its heading and valued citizens. His first Presidential vote was cast for Abraham Lincoln; he has since been a stalwart Republican and takes quite an active interest in political affairs, having frequently served as a delegate to the county conventions. He is a Mason in good standing and is a member of Harmon Post No. 115, G. A. R., of Hoopeston. His wife holds membership with the Women's Relief Corps of Hoopeston and belongs to the First Presbyterian Church of Wellington and to the Woman's Christian Temperance Union. They have contributed liberally to all worthy benevolences, their aid is never withheld from any enterprise calculated for the public good and among Wellington's best and most highly respected citizens they are numbered.
PHILIP SCHWARTZ, one of the extensive land-owners, and a prominent and representative citizen of this county, residing on section 24, Prairie Green Township, claims Germany as his native land. He was born in Baden on the 2d of May, 1824, and was the second in order of birth in a family of five children, whose parents were Thomas and Selma (Cox) Schwartz. The father was also born in Baden, and was reared in the usual manner of farmer lads. Himself and wife never left their native land. Of their two sons and three daughters, only three are now living; Anna, wife of Bal Berkley, who is living retired in Hoopeston; Philip, of this sketch; and Hartman, a resident farmer of Prairie Green Township.
Our subject spent the days of his boyhood in time Fatherland, and was educated in the public schools. At the age of twenty-seven he determined to leave Germany and seek a home on the other side of the Atlantic. So he bade adieu to friends and native land, and took passage on a sailing-vessel, which weighed anchor at Havre, France. After a pleasant voyage of thirty days, he landed at New York City with but two French dollars in his pocket, and these he had carried on board the vessel by cooking for some parties. He thus found himself in a strange land among a strange people, whose tongue he did not know, and almost penniless, but he determined to make the best of his situation. He went to Williamsburg, N. Y., and from there into the country, hunting for work he failed at the first place he tried, but at the next he secured work as a farm hand at $6 per month. He worked in the fields for three months, and his wages were raised to $7. Every cent of this he saved, for he had learned the value of hard-earned money. He then started for the West, going from Philadelphia to Chicago, where he arrived in the spring of 1855. He then went to Freeport, Ill., and afterward worked for a carpenter and a mason in Wisconsin, carrying stones and mortar for $1.25 per day. He afterward went to Freeport, where he engaged in farm labor for a time. Subsequently he went to Iowa, afterward returned to Chicago, from there to Indiana, and later to Bloomington, Ill. At that time the Chicago & Alton Railroad was just being built through the place. The now flourishing city was a mere hamlet. Mr. Schwartz there remained for eleven years, and worked as a brick-carrier. Subsequently he was employed upon a farm belonging to Mr. Ruggs.
It was in 1867 that our subject came to Iroquois County. Soon after his arrival he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of partially improved land, upon which was a small cabin about 14x20 feet. It had a common fence-board floor. There was also upon the place an old slab-roof stable. The prairie for miles around was in its primitive condition, not a furrow having been turned or an improvement made thereon. The nearest markets were Sheldon and Watseka, for the flourishing villages to which he now takes his products were not yet in existence. Wild game of all kinds was plentiful, including geese, cranes, brant, ducks, and also deer. The Lake Erie & Western and the Chicago & Eastern Illinois Railroads were not yet built. Prairie fires were often a source of terror to the settlers, and on several different occasions Mr. Schwartz has gone forth to aid his neighbors in protecting themselves and their premises from this deadly enemy.
Mr. Schwartz was united in marriage with Miss Mary Hertzog, a native of Baden, Germany, born December 14, 1832, and by their union have been born six children, five sons and a daughter. The family circle yet remains unbroken by the hand of death, though some have left the parental roof. Charles, the eldest, is married and resides on his fine farm in Prairie Green Township; George is married and is a prosperous farmer of Iroquois County; Frank is also married, and is a well-to-do farmer of Iroquois County; Lena is the wife of John Metzinger, who is engaged in agricultural pursuits in Prairie Green Township; Albert attended the High School of Springfield, Ill., and St. Louis, and is a highly educated young man; William, who is still under the parental roof, completes the family. The grandfather of Mrs. Schwartz was a Frenchman, who, to keep from army service, emigrated to Baden, Germany, where he married a German lady. The father of Mrs. Schwartz, Sciprion Hertzog, was born in Baden. After reaching mature years he served ten years in the army, taking part in the war against Napoleon. In time service at Strasburg they were so long in the weather without shelter that their clothes and shoes rotted off. After the war he married Mary Ann Kolble, and followed the trade of a wood turner. He lived to be eighty-four and she eighty-five years of age. For thirty-four years he was Town Crier. Both died in the Old Country. Of their eight children four came to the United States, Mrs. Schwartz and three brothers, one of whom died and two live in Buffalo, N. Y.
Mr. Schwartz now owns six hundred and eighty acres of valuable land, supplied with all modern improvements, and constituting one of the best farms in this locality. During his early residence in this county, he was on one occasion returning home from Sheldon, when he got lost upon the open prairie. Becoming bewildered, he had to remain all night where he was, waiting for the morning light to guide him. After this he had his wife hang a lighted lantern on the end of their cabin, and as he came past the crabapple grove by Sugar Creek, he would see this light shining as a guiding star. In politics, Mr. Schwartz has long been a supporter of the Democratic party, and his sons are of the same political views. Himself, wife and children are all faithful members of the Holy Trinity Catholic Church, of Dunnington, Ind., of which Father Lambert is pastor. Mr. Schwartz is a member of the building committee, under whose direction is now being erected a magnificent house of worship at a cost of $30,000. It is to be completed by the 1st of January, 1893.
During his long residence in this community, Mr. Schwartz has lived an upright, honorable life, which has gained for him the confidence and goodwill of all with whom he has been brought in contact. He came to this country empty-handed, but he possessed energy and a strong determination to succeed, so that he has steadily worked his way upward to a position of wealth and affluence. He has also gained the respect of a large circle of friends and acquaintances.
JOSHUA W. GALLOWAY, deceased, was one of the prominent and highly respected citizens of this county for many years. A native of Union County, Ohio, he was born on the l6th of July, 1819, and died at his home on section 25, Lovejoy Township, October 23, 1883. He acquired his education in the common schools of his native State, but his advantages were meagre. From an early age he was dependent upon his own resources. When a lad of thirteen he began learning the tanner's trade and afterward learned the blacksmith's trade. He was always a hard-working man, industry and enterprise being numbered among his chief characteristics. He was reared in Shakertown, Montgomery County, Ohio.
After attaining his majority, Mr. Galloway led to the marriage altar Miss Sarah J. Martin, daughter of Joseph and Barbara (Hughey) Martin. Their union was celebrated on the 5th of August, 1850, and unto them were born two sons and two daughters, all of whom are yet living: Mary A. is now the widow of Josiah Moore and resides in Hoopeston, Ill.; Joshua J. Haines is living on the old homestead. He was born January 26, 1856, attended the common schools, and on the 28th of October, 1891, married Miss Anna A. McGill, a daughter of George and Hanna (Smith) McGill. They have a little daughter, Sarah Jane. In politics, Joshua is a Republican. He is one of the wide-awake and enterprising young farmers of the community, and that his life is a busy and useful one is indicated by the neat appearance of his land. Hannibal Xenophen, the third child of the family, married Miss Eva Holmes and is engaged in farming in Nebraska. Lorinda A. is the wife of George Dana, proprietor of a hotel in Jackson, Minn. The children were all provided with good educational advantages and thus well fitted for the practical and responsible duties of life.
In early life, Mr. Galloway was a supporter of the Whig party, and on the organization of the Republican party joined its ranks, being a warm advocate of its principles. He was frequently called upon to fill public positions of honor and trust, and ever discharged his duties with promptness and fidelity, which won him the commendation of all concerned. He was Highway Commissioner in Prairie Glen Township for many years and laid out many of its roads; he was Supervisor of Lovejoy Township several terms, was School Trustee for several years, also Collector, and was Justice of the Peace for nine years. He was a progressive and public-spirited citizen who gave his support to every enterprise calculated to benefit the community or advance its best interests. He aided in the erection of churches and a needy person was never turned from his door empty-handed. From a financial standpoint also his life was certainly a success, for through his own efforts he won a well-deserved competence. He was a kind and loving husband and father, a faithful friend, and the respect and confidence of the entire community were his. He passed away on the 23d of October, 1883, his death being deeply regretted by all who knew him, and his remains were interred in Floral Hill Cemetery in Hoopeston, where a beautiful monument has been erected to his memory.
Mrs. Galloway, who traveled life's journey by his side for thirty-three years and shared with him in its joys and sorrows, and proved herself a faithful helpmate, still survives her husband and is yet living on the old homestead, which is now managed by her son Joshua.
LEWIS E. JONES, an enterprising agriculturist, has the honor of being a native of this county, having been born on the 5th of May, 1854, on section 21, Stockland Township, where he now resides. He is a son of Hon. John H. and Hannah (Pugh) Jones, both natives of Ohio. A sketch of his father is given elsewhere in this work. The early life of our subject was quietly passed in the usual manner of farmer lads upon the old homestead. His education was acquired in the district schools of the neighborhood, where he continued his lessons through the winter months, while in the summer season he worked at farm labor.
An important event in the life of Mr. Jones occurred on the 27th of April, 1879, when was celebrated his marriage with Miss Mary S. Wise, daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth (Moore) Wise, residents of Fountain Creek Township. Two children have been born of their union, a son and daughter, who brighten the home with their presence. Nellie H., the eldest, was born September 27, 1883; and Ray J. was born on the 7th of June, 1885. Mr. Jones and his estimable wife are numbered among the leading citizens of this community. They rank high in social circles and hold an enviable position in the high regard of their many friends and acquaintances. Mrs. Jones is a member of the United Brethren Church.
Our subject now operates two hundred and thirty-two acres of arable land on sections 21 and 22, Stockland Township. He feeds nearly all of the grain which he raises to his stock. He engages quite extensively in stock dealing, and is very successful in his undertakings. He has one of the model farms of the county, its fertile hand being highly cultivated, while its many improvements are well kept up. The neat and thrifty appearance of the place attests time supervision of a careful manager. In politics, Mr. Jones is a supporter of the Republican party, with which he has affiliated since attaining his majority.
THOMAS LOVELESS, an early settler and a prominent, self-made man of this county, who is now a resident of Milford, was born in Ross County, Ohio, on the 4th of May, 1839. His father, William Loveless, was a native of Tennessee, and was born April 15, 1815, of English and German descent. After attaining to mature years he married Margaret Kerney, who was born in Kings County, Ireland, July 12, 1816, and at the age of fourteen years, bidding good-bye to the Emerald Isle, emigrated to America. After a residence of some time in Ohio, they removed to Indiana, in 1840, settling on a farm near Prairieville, Tippecanoe County, where their children were reared. The mother died on the old homestead in the Hoosier State at the age of fifty-six years. Mr. Loveless survived his wife for about ten years, and died in the town of Clark's Hill, at the age of about sixty-six years. Of their family of eight children, seven are yet living, five sons and two daughters, as follows: Frances, Thomas, John E., William W., Edwin V., Sarah and Moses. All reside in the neighborhood of Clark's Hill, Ind., with the exception of our subject.
Thomas Loveless was reared to manhood in the usual manner of farmer lads, and ere leaving Indiana was married, on the 22d of July, 1858, to Miss Harriet Funk, daughter of Jacob and Eliza Funk. Her parents are both now deceased, having departed this life when about seventy years of age. The year following their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Loveless came to this county in the month of September, and took up their residence on the farm two miles southwest of Milford. He purchased fifty-one acres of land but afterward extended the boundaries of that farm until it now comprises one hundred and seventy acres on section 21, Milford Township. He also owns two hundred and thirty-seven acres of valuable land on sections 26 and 27, two miles south of the village, besides two hundred and ninety-two acres in Indiana. For a number of years he earned on general farming extensively and yet follows that pursuit in a more limited degree. However, he raises considerable stock, cattle, horses and hogs, to which he feeds nearly all his grain. From twenty to twenty-five years he has bought and shipped cattle and hogs quite extensively.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Loveless were born nine children, six of whom arc now living: Elizabeth, who was born November 1, 1859, died August 30, 1860; Margaret, who was born November 24, 1860, died on the 29th of the same month; George R. B., who was born October 6, 1862, is a farmer near Clark's Hill, Ind., and was married May 4, 1885, to Miss Letitia Bryan, by whom he has had three children, Pearl, Claude and Hannah H.; William, who was born October 19, 1864, is a farmer of Alliance, Neb.; Lydia, born February 6, 1866, became the wife of Andrew Dallstream, October 27, 1887, and with their one child they reside in Hoopeston, Ill.; M. Oly, born February 29, 1868, became the wife of Wilber T. Caldwell, whose home is in Alliance, Neb., April 9, 1890; Oly M., born November 4, 1869, was married August 12, 1891, to Charles McMillen, a resident of Milford; Jacob, born June 29, 1872, died August 26, 1875; and Thomas T., born August 22, 1876, completes the family.
In politics, Mr. Loveless is a warm advocate of Republican principles. About 1870, he was elected Township Assessor, and for eleven years he served as School Trustee. Socially, he is a member of Milford Lodge No. 253, I. O. O. F., with which he has been identified since 1868, and is now serving as Deputy. Mrs. Loveless is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
In 1880, our subject left his farm and removed to Milford, where he has a comfortable home and other property. He now rents most of his farm; to the remainder he gives his personal supervision. He has never had a mortgage upon a piece of land except on the first he purchased, and this was released when it became due. Every acre of this land is today free from debt, and his farm now yields him a good income. His property has been accumulated through his own energy and industry and he may well be termed a self-made man, as he started out in life for himself dependent entirely upon his own resources. He has met with some difficulties, but these seemed only to give him a new impetus and have been used as stepping-stones to something higher. Steadily he has worked his way upward until he is now numbered among the wealthy citizens of Milford, and his fair and honest dealings in all the relations of life have won him universal confidence.
The maternal grandfather of our subject was one of the first settlers near Connersville, Ind. In 1862, a re-union of the Harland family occurred at the home of Stephen Harland, having been called by William Sparks. Twenty-six families were represented. There were thirteen of the children of William Sparks, seventy-six grandchildren, thirty-seven great-grandchildren and nine great-great-grandchildren. Several members of the family attained to very advanced ages. The great-grandmother of our subject was fatally injured by a cow which she was milking, and soon after died at the age of one hundred and two years, and several others reached the century milepost.
The Doctor is the eldest of eleven children, and with time exception of two deceased, all are living in Iroquois County. In the common schools, he acquired his primary education, and, with his parents came to Illinois when twenty-one years of age. He afterward attended the State Normal School and later went to Ann Arbor, Mich., where he pursued a medical course of study. In 1868, he went to Cincinnati, where he attended a course of lectures in the Eclectic College and in 1878 he was graduated from the Bennett Medical College. Subsequently, he took a course of study for the treatment of diseases of the eye and ear in the Chicago Medical College. During this time, he made his home in Madison County, Ind., with his uncle, who was engaged in the drug business. He began practice in Woodland in 1875 and has prosecuted his profession continuously since. On the 28th of March, 1892, he removed to Watseka, where he now resides.
November 1, 1870, Dr. Browne was united in marriage with Miss Kiziah E., daughter of A. D. France, a native of South Carolina. She was born in Mercer County, Ill., where her father engaged in merchandising. Five children have been born unto the Doctor and his wife, all of whom are yet living: Leonora, the wife of John A. Wilson, a resident of Watseka by whom she has one daughter, Vera; Frankie N., Anson L., Homer Marvin and William A. L.
Socially, the Doctor is a Royal Arch Mason. He also belongs to the subordinate lodge and encampment of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and holds membership with the Modern Woodmen of America. He and wife and daughter are members of the Christian Church of Woodland, in which he serves as Trustee. In politics he is a supporter of Republican principles and has filled the office of Clerk and Justice of the Peace, succeeding his father in the latter position. He is also a member of the county and State medical societies.
In 1886, the Doctor suffered considerable loss by fire, which destroyed all his office furniture, his books, instruments and many valuable specimens. He also lost his diplomas and many other things of value, his loss amounting altogether to $3,000. In connection with his profession, he is interested in farming, owning two farms in the county. The Doctor is a skillful physician and surgeon who reads extensively in the line of his profession and keeps well informed concerning everything pertaining to the medical science. He has an excellent patronage in Woodland, and although his residence in Watseka covers a very short period, he has secured a good patronage. Those who know him esteem him highly and he is popular as a citizen and friend, as well as a physician and surgeon.
HON. GEORGE B. WINTER, one of the prominent and influential citizens of Iroquois County residing in Onarga, where he has made his home for more than a quarter of a century, claims Massachusetts as the State of his nativity. He was born May 26, 1828, in Belchertown, Hampshire County, and is one of eighteen children who were born unto Alpheus and Prudence (Kenfield) Winter, the father a native of Connecticut and the mother of the Bay State. Of their nine sons and nine daughters, five sons and three daughters are yet living. Mr. Winter departed this life in Massachusetts in 1848, and his wife, who survived him almost thirty years, died in her native State in 1877.
No event of special importance occurred during the boyhood days of our subject, which were quietly passed under the parental roof. After attaining to years of maturity, he was joined in wedlock, with Miss Kate M. Hawkes, daughter of Ichabod and Caroline (Porter) Hawkes, both of whom were natives of Massachusetts. Their union was celebrated on the 10th of August, 1852, and unto them were born two children, a son and daughter: George B., born May 29, 1854; and Julia P., born on the 3d of February, 1856.
At length Mr. Winter determined to try his fortune in the West, believing that better opportunities were furnished in the young and rapidly growing States than in the old and more thickly-settled States of the East. In consequence, in 1854, accompanied by his wife and son, he started for Illinois, and made his first location in Princeton. After a year they removed to Malden, six miles east of Princeton, where they spent two years, and then went to Brenton Township, Ford County, Ill. For eight years Mr. Winter was there engaged in farming and stock-raising with good success, but at length he determined to turn his attention to other pursuits, and the spring of 1866 witnessed his arrival in Onarga, where he has since resided. On coming to this place, he opened a general merchandise store, and continued operations in that line for twenty-five years. He is a man of good business ability, sagacious and far-sighted, enterprising and progressive. He built up an excellent trade, and by his well-directed efforts secured a comfortable competency. In 1891, he sold out, and has since lived a retired life.
His fellow-townsmen, appreciating his worth and ability, have frequently called upon Mr. Winter to serve in public positions of honor and trust. He has served as Village Trustee for several terms, was Trustee of Grand Prairie Seminary, and has been Chairman of the Executive Board of that institution for a number of. years. In 1880, he was nominated and elected Representative from the Sixteenth Senatorial District, comprised of Iroquois and Kankakee Counties, to the Illinois General Assembly. While a member of the House, he labored earnestly and untiringly in the behalf of temperance, but his active interest along that line proved unpopular, and he was afterward left to remain at home, as were all the members who worked for temperance in the Assembly of 1881. He is today a stanch Prohibitionist. While in Ford County, he also served as Supervisor several terms, being a member of the first board after township organization. Mr. Winter is a public-spirited citizen, and has ever borne his part in the upbuilding and advancement of the community's best interests. For a quarter of a century, he was one of its leading business men, and formed a wide acquaintance. He is held in the highest regard by all within whom business or pleasure has brought him in contact, and his friends are many.
JACOB LYMAN, a representative farmer of Martinton Township, residing on section 25, was born on the 24th of January, 1832, in Stark County, Ohio. He comes of an old Pennsylvania family of Dutch descent. The great-grandfather was a native of Holland, and in an early day, braving the dangers of an ocean voyage, became one of the first settlers of the Keystone State. The grandfather, John Lyman, was a native of Pennsylvania, and the father of our subject, Samuel Lyman, was born in Buffalo Valley, Union County, Pa., in 1810. In 1819 he removed to Ohio with his parents, a lad of nine summers, and is numbered among the early settlers of that community. He grew to manhood in the Buckeye State, and there wedded Mary Schnieder, a native of Germany, who came to America when a young lady of sixteen years. They began their domestic life upon a farm in Stark County, where they remained for some time.
In 1837, Samuel Lyman came with his family to Illinois, and was one of the first settlers of Iroquois County. Locating in what is now Iroquois Township, he entered and broke land, from which he developed a good farm. In 1850 he removed to Martinton Township, and entered a tract of one hundred and twenty acres of land, where the subject of our sketch now resides. He made an excellent farm, there reared his family, and at length departed this life on the old homestead, his death occurring in October, 1877. His wife died in February, 1868. Their family numbered only two sons, of whom Jacob is the elder. Jonathan, his brother, is now a farmer of Indiana.
The subject of this sketch came with his parents to Illinois in 1837. He was then a lad of five years. Amid the wild scenes of frontier life he was reared to manhood, and with the family he bore many of the hardships and privations of pioneer life during the first few years of their residence. They had to go long distances to market, and had to travel to Danville or La Fayette, Ind., to get their milling done. Their trip usually consumed about four days, and they camped out both going and coming. The educational advantages of our subject were very limited, for the schools in the new country are not generally noted for their excellence. Almost his entire boyhood and youth were spent on the farm. For four months he worked elsewhere in the neighborhood, but returned, and in connection with his brother, took manage of the home farm. He cared for his parents until their death. Himself and brother succeeded to the estate, but Jacob bought out his brother's interest, and still resides upon the farm, which has been his home almost continuously since 1850.
In 1867, Mr. Lyman wedded Miss Catherine A. Gibson, a native of Indiana, and a daughter of John Gibson, who on coming to this country many years ago located in Crescent Township, but is now living in Douglas Township. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Lyman have been born four children: Mary E., the eldest, is the wife of Abraham Labounty, who aids in operating the home farm; Martha May, Rachel and Jessie Belle Blanche complete the family. They lost one daughter, Emma Bertha Snow, who died in infancy.
Since casting his first Presidential vote for James Buchanan, Mr. Lyman has been identified with the Democratic party, and has supported all its Presidential candidates. Himself and wife are both members of the Christian Church, and are highly respected people. For thirty-five years he has been a resident of the county, and has witnessed almost its entire growth from the days of its early infancy, he has seen its wild lands transformed into beautiful homes and farms, towns and villages have sprung into existence, churches and schools have been built, railroads have been introduced, and the work of active civilization and progress has been carried forward so rapidly that hardly a landmark of pioneer days yet remains, and the county has taken the front rank and the sister-counties of this great commonwealth. Mr. Lyman has ever borne his part in this work of transformation, and well may be numbered among the honored pioneers.
David Warren Miller is the second in order of birth of this family, and was reared on his fathers farm, receiving such a limited education as could be gleaned at the common schools. When twenty years of age he secured a certificate, and for two years taught school. With the money which he had carefully saved, he went to the Wesleyan University, at Bloomington, where he attended seven terms. Desiring to engage in the practice of medicine, as his life work, he then commenced study with Dr. Little, of Bloomington. In the summer of 1878, he entered Jefferson Medical College, of Philadelphia, and was graduated there from in the spring of 1880. He then located at Gilman, and has practiced here since that time. He is a member of the Central Illinois Medical Society, the Illinois State Medical Society and the National Association of Railroad Surgeons. He is surgeon for the Illinois Central and for the Toledo, Peoria & Warsaw Railroad at Gilman.
A marriage ceremony performed on the 15th of May, 1884, united the destinies of Dr. Miller and Miss Clara Raney. The lady is a native of Peoria County, Ill, born October 5, 1864, and is a daughter of Dr. H. A. Raney, formerly of Gilman. Her father, a native of New York, was born in 1828, and is yet living, his home being in Danville, Ill. He was educated for the medical profession, and after pursuing a course of study was graduated from Rush Medical College. He then engaged in practice in Ford and Peoria Counties for a number of years. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Susan Hunt, was born in North Carolina, in 1830, and is also living. The Doctor and Mrs. Raney became the parents of four children, a son and three daughters, all of whom are living. The eldest, Mary, is now the wife of Charles H. Youmans, a leading attorney of Paxton, Ill.; Nellie is the wife of George T. Caldwell, a resident of Girard, Kan., who is engaged in the manufacture of brick; Ben H. is a druggist of Danville, Ill.; and Mrs. Miller completes the family. The latter was educated in the graded schools of Gibson City, and pursued a course of study in music and elocution in Evanston, Ill., and was afterward for some years a successful teacher of those arts in Ford and Iroquois Counties. Two children; Mabel and Jessie Fay, have gladdened the home of the Doctor and his wife . The elder was born June 22, 1886, and the younger on the 16th of November, 1890. The parents are both members of the Presbyterian Church.
In politics, Dr. Miller affiliates with the Republican party. He is one of the stanchest supporters of all educational interests and is now serving his third year as a member of the School Board. He is also a member of the Masonic fraternity, and socially, holds a high position in the town, his home being noted for its hospitality and good cheer. Almost his entire time and attention are devoted to his profession, in which his standing is high. As is every first-class member of his profession, he is still a student and keeps well informed concerning the medical discoveries. He is a liberal contributor to all worthy enterprises, aiding in the support of any interest calculated to advance the general welfare. He has won for himself many friends in this community, who esteem him highly for his strict integrity and genial kindness of heart.
JACOB F. DEEGANS, an honored pioneer of Iroquois County and a veteran of the late war, now engaged in farming on section 34, Ash Grove Township, is a native of the Buckeye State. He was born in in Ross County, October 18, 1837. His father, William Deegans, was a native of the Emerald Isle, and during his boyhood emigrated to America, locating in Ohio. He there married Susan Peppers, a native of that State, and in 1838 they emigrated to Warren County, Ind., where Mr. Deegans cleared and developed a good farm. Ten years afterward, in 1848, he came by team to Illinois and settled in Milford Township, Iroquois County, a mile from the village of Milford. Later, he sold that farm and removed to section 25, Ash Grove Township, where he placed under a high state of cultivation a farm of one hundred and thirteen acres. His death there occurred in 1858, at the age of fifty-two years. His wife is still living at the age of seventy-four and makes her home with her children.
In the Deegans family were eleven children, eight of whom are yet living: Jacob F. is the eldest; Mrs. Samuel Davis resides near Milford; John, who served during the late war, makes his home in Kansas; Louisa and Debbie reside in Nebraska; Diana is living in Wellington, Iroquois County; Martha makes her home in Kansas; and Catherine is living neat Wellington.
Our subject was only a year old when his parents removed to Warren County, Ind., and at the age of eleven years he came to Illinois. He attended the subscription schools and afterward the district schools, but his educational privileges were limited. However, by subsequent reading and observation, he has become a well-informed man. At the age of eleven years, he started out in life for himself, working as a farm hand until he enlisted for the war.
Prompted by patriotic impulses, Mr. Deegans then responded to the call for troops, and, donning the blue August 6, 1862, became a member of Company K, Seventy-sixth Illinois Infantry, at Milford. The regiment assembled at Kankakee, was then sent to Columbus, Ky., and later to La Grange, Tenn. The first battle in which they participated was at Jackson, Miss., and the regiment lost heavily. Our subject was struck by a spent ball but was not seriously injured. Nine men of his company were killed. He afterward participated in time siege of Vicksburg and the Meridian raid, during which the troops were engaged in tearing up the Mobile & Ohio Railroad. They then went back to Vicksburg and to the mouth of the Ohio River, and subsequently were sent to New Orleans. They participated in the siege and capture of Mobile and the battle of Ft. Blakely. In a hand-to-hand charge at that place, Mr. Deegans was wounded and for thirty-days was in the hospital. He then received a sixty-days furlough, after which he rejoined his regiment in Chicago, where he was honorably discharged after a service of three years.
When the war was over, our subject returned to his home in Ash Grove Township, where he has since engaged in farming. He was married, December 29, 1869, to Miss Elizabeth Carrington, who was born in Indiana and is a daughter of Milton and Elizabeth (Johnson) Carrington. Both are deceased. Two children have been born to our subject and his estimable wife: Susie B., who was educated in the public schools and in Onarga Seminary; and Nannie E., who is at home. The Deegans household is the abode of hospitality. Mrs. Deegans and her daughters arc pleasant, entertaining ladies, and their many friends always delight to visit there as they are always sure of a warm welcome.
Mr. Deegans is a member of Cissna Park Post No. 575, G. A. R., and his wife is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is a highly-respected citizen, his sterling worth and honorable upright life having won him the confidence and good-will of all with whom he has come in contact. He cast his first Presidential vote for Gen. Grant but has since supported the Democratic party. His residence in the county covers a period of forty-four years and he well deserves a place among its pioneer settlers
WILLIAM H. HARRY, of the firm of Harry Bros., lawyers and abstracters of title of Watseka, was born near Eureka, Woodford County, Ill., on the 28th of November, 1853, and is a son of Thomas S. and Irena J. (Compton) Harry. He removed with his parents to Livingston County in 1865, and was there reared on a farm and attended the district schools. On attaining manhood, he engaged in teaching school and at the same time entered upon the study of law during his leisure intervals, under the preceptorship of the Hon. Samuel T. Fosdick, a prominent lawyer of Chatsworth.
At the June term of the Illinois Supreme Court at Mount Vernon, in 1876. Mr. Harry, at the age of twenty-two years, was admitted to the Bar. He then entered upon the practice of his chosen profession in Sheldon, this State, where he continued business until the 2d of October, 1880. He then came to Watseka and embarked in practice in this place. His energies were devoted to his profession until the 3d of February, 1886, when he was appointed by President Cleveland to the position of Postmaster of this city, entering upon the duties of the office on the 13th of that month. He proved an efficient and capable officer and served in that capacity until superseded by the present incumbent on the 1st of May, 1889. Mr. Harry is a Democrat, as will be inferred from the foregoing. In the spring of 1885, he was appointed City Attorney of Watseka and filled that position until appointed Postmaster, when he resigned to enter upon his other duties.
Prior to leaving the postoffice, our subject had arranged with his brother, J. C., to enter the abstract business, and had worked to that end, so that on the 1st of June, 1889, they opened an abstract and law office in Watseka. In November following they sold a one third-interest in the business to their brother, Samuel R., and the business was conducted by the three until January 1, 1892, when J. C. sold out to his brother, W. H. Harry, and retired. Since that time the business has been conducted by our subject and Samuel R., under the original firm name of Harry Bros.
On the 4th of April, 1877, in Chatsworth, Ill., Mr. Harry of this sketch wedded Miss Mary A. Vail, a daughter of M. B. and Mary E. Vail, and a native of Henry, Marshall County, Ill. Three children, sons, have been born unto them: Edward S., who was born in Sheldon, April 22, 1878; William H., who was born in Sheldon, August 10, 1880; and Ben S., born in Watseka, December 3,1882.
Mr. Harry and his wife are members of the Christian Church, with which they have been identified several years. He is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of America, belonging to Watseka Camp, No. 339. The Harry Bros. make abstracting their principal business, and by industry and close attention to the wants of their customers have built up a very satisfactory business. Their books are kept up to date and all work entrusted to their hands receives prompt and capable attention.
FRIEDRICH BREYMEYER, who is engaged in general farming on section 6, Ash Grove Township, claims Germany as the land of his birth. He was born May 18, 1847 in Lippe-Chaumburg. His father, Gottlieb Breymeyer, was born and reared on the same farm which was the birthplace of our subject, and became an agriculturist and also owned an oil mill. He wedded Mary Schoenbeck and with his family came to America in 1862, sailing from Bremen to New York City whence he made his way to Crete, Will County, Ill. Purchasing a farm, he there resided until 1871, and now resides about thirty-five miles west of Topeka, Kan. In polities he is a Republican. In religious belief he is a Lutheran. In the Breymeyer family were the following children: Friedrich of this sketch; Henry, a resident of Kansas; Gottlieb; Ernest, who died in Kansas; William; Caroline, wife of William Seggebruch, of Ash Grove; Engel in Kansas; and Sophia who died in that State.
Our subject spent the first fifteen years of his life in his native land and was educated in its public schools. He then crossed the broad Atlantic with his parents and under the parental roof he remained until 1871. The following year he came to Iroquois County and purchased one hundred and eleven acres of land, his present farm. It was then all raw prairie, not a furrow having been turned or an improvement made. He has since extended its boundaries until it now comprise two hundred and sixty-two acres and the entire amount is under a high state of cultivation, yielding a golden tribute to the care and labor bestowed upon it. The farm is one of the model homes of the community. Many improvements have been made thereon. In addition to the comfortable residence there are good barns and outbuildings, the latest improved machinery and fine grades of stock.
On the 9th of February, 1873, in Ash Grove Township, Mr. Breymeyer wedded Miss Sophia Lucke, who was born near Crete, Will County, and is a daughter of August Lucke. Four children grace their union and they also lost one child, Fred, who died at the age of two years. Sophia, August, Johnnie and William are still under the parental roof. Mr. Breymeyer and his family are members of the Lutheran Church. He is one of its active workers and served as a member of time building committee during the erection of the present house of worship. He has served as highway Commissioner, Township Assessor, Census Enumerator in 1890, and for sixteen years has been School Director. He is one of the prominent and influential members of the Republican party in this community. He cast his first Presidential vote for Greeley, but has since been a Republican. He has frequently been a delegate to the county and State conventions and is now the Central Committeeman of Ash Grove Township. Empty-handed, Mr. Breymeyer started out in life for himself with no capital or influential friends to aid him, but by industry and time exercise of correct business principles he has steadily worked his way upward and may truly be called a self-made man, deserving all the praise that term implies.
ALFRED GREGORY, an early settler and highly respected citizen of Iroquois County, now deceased, was born in Lawrence County, Ind., on the 14th of February, 1818, and was a son of James Gregory. He was reared to agricultural pursuits, and was educated in the common schools. On the 24th of October, 1846, he was united in marriage with Miss Lucy Templeton, a daughter of James Templeton, and a native of Indiana, born in Shelby County on the 22d of February, 1827.
The following children were born of the union of this worthy couple, three sons and five daughters: Rachel A., the eldest, now the wife of Amos Mellinger, a resident of Butler County, Kan.; Frances I., who died at the age of four years; George F., a farmer of Middleport Township, who is serving as Deputy County Clerk under his brother J. W.; James Warren, who is the present Clerk of Iroquois County, and is represented elsewhere in this work; Hannah M., who resides with her mother and family in Watseka; Oliver Cromwell, who died at the age of one and a-half years; and Lucy, the youngest, now the wife of Owen L. Gray, a resident farmer of Chebanse Township.
Mr. Gregory removed with his family from Indiana to Iroquois County, Ill., in 1861, and settled in Middleport Township, where he engaged in farming and stock-raising. He there spent the remainder of his life, his death occurring on the 31st of August, 1873. His good wife survives her husband, and with three of her children resides in Watseka.
In politics, Mr. Gregory was a Republican, and held the office of School Director for a great many years. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and his wife and children are identified with the same society. He was an upright and honorable man, whose course in life always commanded respect and confidence where he was best known.
GEORGE R. PALMER, now editor of the Leader and Review, published at Onarga, was born in Buckingham County, Va., October 4, 1835, and is a son of James Q. and Mary A. (Rutledge) Palmer, both natives of Virginia. His mother was a descendant of Edward Rutledge, who signed the Declaration of Independence, his father a descendant of the English poet Quarles. His grandfather Palmer had charge of the boats Gen. Washington used in Crossing the Delaware in the attack on Trenton. In 1840, James Q. Palmer came to Illinois locating on a farm in Fulton County. He afterward engaged in the mercantile business, and was a resident of Fulton County for about twenty-two years. He then went to Jacksonville, Ill., where he engaged in the stock business until 1873. The following year his death occurred.
The subject of this sketch was brought by his parents to Illinois when quite a young lad. After attending the public schools, he entered the Wesleyan University, of Bloomington, pursuing a classical course, and was a classmate of Adlai E. Stevenson, Vice-president of the United States. Wishing to enter the ministry, he subsequently took a theological course in the Garrett Biblical Institute of Evanston. A number of years later, he received the degree of A. M. from the Northwestern-University, and the degree of D. D. was conferred upon him by the Illinois Wesleyan University, of Bloomington. In 1857 he entered the ministry and continued his pastoral labors for a number of years.
On the 2d of August, 1861, Rev. Mr. Palmer entered the army and shortly afterward was appointed Chaplain of the Tenth Missouri Infantry, in which he served for nearly three years. Previous to this time, he was married, on the 4th of September, 1860, to Miss Adeline Haney, daughter of Rev. Richard Haney of the Methodist Church, who has been connected with the Methodist ministry for about sixty years. Unto them were born seven children, five of whom are yet living: Edmund H., Carrie A., Mary A., Louise and George R. Spencer and Stacy are both deceased.
On his return from the war, Mr. Palmer resumed his ministerial work, which he continued until 1890. He was first stationed after time war in Lewistown, Fulton County, from where he came to Onarga in 1868. For three years he was pastor of the church in Onarga, and was then appointed Presiding Elder of the district, serving for four-years. Subsequently he went to Normal, and after two years service as pastor was appointed Presiding Elder of that district. Receiving a call from the church in Rock Island, he was for three years its pastor, and for three years he served as Financial Secretary of the Illinois Wesleyan University. He was then pastor in Abingdon, Monmouth and elsewhere, after which he came to Onarga, and in 1890 became editor of the Leader and Review.
During his ministry, Rev. Mr. Palmer was greatly honored by the church, having twice been elected as a delegate to the General Conference, which is the law-making body of the church. He was elected at the Baltimore General Conference as a member of the General Missionary Committee, having charge of all the missionary appropriations and all the legislation for the several missions in all parts of the world. He has been a close student of the social problems of the times and the legislation of his State and county. For a month each year, during four successive years, he studied Tammany in its home in New York, and for some years he has been present during a part of nearly every session of the Legislature in this State. Upon entering the ministry, he studied law for a year, and for a year was a student of medicine, thus obtaining a general knowledge of the two great professions with which he would come in contact during his work. He has very frequently been called to deliver public addresses on various subjects - Eulogies on Grant, Logan, Garfield, Sherman, Colfax, Sheridan and many other public men. He has delivered many orations on Decoration Day, and Fourth of July, and addresses before colleges and literary societies. Rev. Mr. Palmer is a man of more titan ordinary ability, is a logical thinker, a clear reasoner and was very successful in his ministerial work. He won many friends wherever he went, and is held in the highest regard in the community with which he is now identified.
THE BANK OF DONOVAN & VENNUM, of Milford, Ill., was established May 18, 1876, by John L. Donovan and Thomas Vennum with a capital of $40,000. This is a private banking house and does a general banking business, loans money on long or short time, buys and sells exchange, and makes collections. Its responsibility is based on the large landed and personal property ownership of its proprietors and their good reputation throughout the financial codes of the State as safe and conservative bankers. The bank has prospered from the start; its deposits have grown from a nominal sum at the beginning to from $125,000 to $l50,000 at the present time. This bank is the only one in Milford, which is a thrifty and growing town of a thousand inhabitants, situated in a rich agricultural region, and on the line of the Chicago & Eastern Illinois Railroad, some eleven miles south of the county seat of Iroquois County.
HON. GEORGE C. HARRINGTON resides in Watseka. In preserving a record of the lives and deeds of representative people of Iroquois County, which will include many of its well-known early settlers and active and influential citizens, a double purpose will be served. In the first place, posterity will have something more comprehensive and enduring to remind it of an illustrious ancestry than tradition; and in time second place will be taught a practical and useful lesson of life and the value and permanency of good character, the result of integrity, morality and usefulness - encouraging the struggling youth of coming generations to hope for ultimate success, notwithstanding a humble origin and the difficulty in overcoming almost seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Among the many worthy people whose sketches appear in this work, the one of whom we write takes rank among the foremost.
On the 30th of June, 1834, in St. Lawrence County, N. Y., was born to Benjamin O. and Harriet E. (Langdon) Harrington, a son, who in due course of time was christened George C. Thus child is now well known to the citizens of Iroquois County as the popular and reliable Cashier of the First National Bank of Watseka. His parents were natives of Vermont, and were descended from old New England families. In 1837, our subject accompanied his parents to Illinois, being then but three years of age. The family settled in Joliet, and in due course of time George C. began his education in the public schools of that city. At the age of thirteen he left school and catered upon an apprenticeship to the printer's trade in the office of the True Democrat (now the Joliet Republican) to learn "the art preservative of all arts." There by close application and earnest endeavor he became full-edged typo. Having arisen to the dignity of a journeyman printer, he decided to secure an education, and with that end in view went to Skowhegan Falls, Me., where he fitted himself for college, after which he entered Union College, of Schenectady, N. Y., of which the distinguished Dr. Eliphalet Nott was President. So well and industriously did he apply himself to his studies that he stood at the head of his class in the classics, and in point of literary ability took foremost rank among many able and talented classmates.
On leaving college he again sought the West and established himself in business at Davenport, Iowa, in connection within Franc B. Wilke (Poliuto), later of the Chicago Times, in the publication of the Davenport Daily News, which soon achieved prominence as one of the leading Democratic journals of Iowa. His connection with the Daily News continued until 1859. Mr. Harrington then came to Iroquois County, Ill., and became associated with the Iroquois Press, a Democratic newspaper of Middleport. The following year he received the Democratic nomination for Clerk of the Circuit Court, and although defeated at the ensuing election, he ran far ahead of his ticket. He still continued his connection with the Press, which he conducted with ability and success until 1862. The second year of the War for the Union was in progress, and reverses to the Union forces had raised excitement in the public mind to a fever beat. Patriotism and a desire to aid in the great struggle induced Mr. Harrington to abandon the peaceful scenes of journalism for service on the tented field. Consequently he began recruiting for the army, and after taking the first company into Kankakee for the Seventy-sixth Illinois Regiment, he assisted in filling up two other companies for the One Hundred and Thirteenth Illinois Infantry.
Mr. Harrington enlisted as a private soldier, but his superior ability being apparent, he was chosen by the members of his company to be their Captain. In January, 1863, he was promoted to be Major, but the following summer, being incapacitated for active service by disease contracted in the field, he was forced to resign, which he did while on duty near Vicksburg, Miss., on the surrender of that Confederate stronghold, July 4, 1863. On his return from the army he engaged in the hardware business at Watseka in the firm of Woodford & Co.
Soon afterward, Maj. Harrington was appointed Collector of Internal Revenue for Ford, Iroquois and Champaign Counties, and discharged the duties devolving upon him with ability and fidelity. In 1850, he was elected Mayor of Watseka, was reelected the following year, elected again in 1885, and at the close of the third term, although urgently requested to serve again, refused a fourth term. In the year 1870, in connection with several other enterprising citizens, the Major organized the First National Bank of Watseka, of which he was chosen the first Cashier. This is one of the leading financial institutions of Eastern Illinois, and its success, which has been marked, reflects credit upon its worthy Cashier, who has held that position continuously since its organization.
On the 25th of May, 1864, Maj. Harrington was united in marriage in Crawfordsville, Ind., with Miss Mary L. Hutchinson. She was born in Hamilton County, Ohio, and is a daughter of Jonathan Hutchinson. They have two children who are yet living, namely: Howard W. Harrington and Jerome B. Harrington. The Major is very domestic in his habits and his home is a model of comfort and good taste.
Maj. Harrington has always taken considerable interest in politics, and although not an active politician in the common acceptation of the term, he is recognized throughout the State as a prominent Democrat, but has never been an aspirant for the honors or emoluments of public office. In 1876, without his consent, his name was mentioned by several papers and prominently spoken of by eminent Democrats as the candidate for the office of Secretary of State, but he induced his friends to withdraw his name from the State Convention. He has served as a member of the Democratic State Central Committee and presided over the Democratic Congressional Convention, held in Fairbury in 1878, and on the invitation of that body addressed them, making a masterly speech, which was published and scattered broadcast as a campaign document. The same convention would have nominated him for Congress but he emphatically declined the proffered honor. Later on his name was conspicuous in several Democratic journals as an available candidate for Lieutenant-Governor of Illinois. In June, 1880, he was a delegate from Illinois to the National Democratic Convention, and was a Presidential Elector in the campaign of 1884, when Cleveland and Hendricks were elected, that being the only occasion on which his party has been successful in electing a President since 1856.
Maj. Harrington is an active member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and is much esteemed by his brethren of the fraternity. In the preparation of this sketch the writer acknowledges his indebtedness to a previously published work for the main facts set forth, and perhaps can do no better than to complete his labors by quoting the closing paragraph of the same.
"Hon. George C. Harrington is a self-made man, having risen by his own unaided efforts to his present enviable position in life. His parents were poor, but by his indefatigable energy he acquired an education in spite of all obstacles that darkened the path of his early years. A gentleman of culture, a fine scholar and still a student from habit; a man towering high among his fellows, all recognizing his superior ability and worth of character and ever ready to pay deference to his excellent qualities, he is yet as modest and retiring as a child. Vanity is not one of his characteristics. A Democrat in principle and practice, he believes with the faith born of conviction in the equality and brotherhood of man. He is public-spirited, liberal and charitable, ever ready to assist with his purse or pen in any cause that promises good to his fellow-men or the public. A man of broad and comprehensive views, he looks upon the world as he finds it, and is therefore conservative rather than radical. The people of Watseka look upon him as an exemplary man and are proud to call him their own."
SMITH HICKMAN carries on farming on section 17, Martinton Township. He was born in Tippecanoe County, Ind., near LaFayette, on the 10th of May, 1854. He is a son of Michael Hickman, a native of Pennsylvania, and of German parentage. The father grew to mature years near his birthplace and there married Mary Long, also a native of the Keystone State. Mr. Hickman was a farmer, settling in Indiana in the early days of Tippecanoe County, then a wilderness. He cleared and made a farm and there resided until his death, which occurred about 1860. His wife survived him but a few months and both he buried in the same cemetery.
Our subject was left an orphan when a child of six years. For a year or two after his parents' death he found a home with kindly relatives, and then he went away among strangers, as soon as large enough going to work for himself. He found a friend in Rev. Ebenezer Storm, and for him he worked for upwards of eight years. During this time he had no school advantages and is almost entirely a self-educated man. He owes to his habit of observation and experience in life the fact of being a well-informed man on all subjects of the day and on general topics. He came to Illinois in 1881 and located in Iroquois County. He first worked for John Storm, one of the pioneers of the county who has since passed away, and with him he continued about a year and a-half.
Mr. Hickman was united in wedlock, October, 1883, with Mary Minerva Stone, who was also born in Indiana, in Jasper County. She came to this State with her father, Thomas Stone, when a child of ten years. Her father settled near Woodland, Belmont Township. To Mr. and Mrs. Hickman were born two children: George W. and Oscar.
After his marriage, Mr. Hickman rented a farm of Mr. Storm and followed farming for three years. He then rented another place, which he farmed for two years. He next purchased a farm of one hundred and twenty acres in Iroquois Township and there followed the occupation of farming for a period of about two years; at the expiration of which time he sold it and purchased the place where he now resides. He has here a farm of eighty acres of valuable and well-cultivated land very near the village of Martinton. This place is finely tilled and has a large and substantial residence, good barns, cribs and other farm buildings upon it, and well betokens the thrift and enterprise of its present owner. Mr. Hickman started in life a poor orphan-boy and had to make his own way from the first, and thus his present prosperity and success are the reward of his own industry and business enterprise. Throughout this section he is held to be one of the most progressive farmers of Martinton Township.
In his political affiliations, Mr. Hickman is allied with the Republican party, his first vote having been cast for Rutherford B. Hayes. He has always lent his influence to the support of the best interests of his county and State, and though never having asked for or accepted official positions, always performs with interest the duties of citizenship. He is a friend to education, believing in good schools and teacher, and has served as a member of the School Board for three terms. Socially, Mr. Hickman is a member of the Modern Woodmen. He has been a resident of this county for eleven years and is well and favorably known in Watseka and adjoining townships.