Carroll County Biographies


Hiram Fender moved to Elkhorn Township, Carroll County, on the north Polo-Milledgeville road about two miles east of Hitt in the 1850's. He was born in Cap Grove, Illinois in 1826, the son of Absalom Fender, who was of French Hugenout descent and had migrated there from Indiana and North Carolina where he purchased 1600 acres of land from the government and had a large family.

Hiram Fender, one of the sons of Absalom, sold the 160 acres which he inherited from his father in Cap Grove, and purchased about 400 acres in Carroll County, mostly small timber lots which had been owned by a number of settlers. He built a large white frame house with an observatory On the top, and barns on the south side of the road. He was said to have had a race track on the north side of the road, and was interested in buying and selling race horses and travelling to many fairs of that day to races.

In the 1860 Census of Elkhorn Township, he is listed as 32 years of age, and had a household of wife, Mary, 27, one daughter, Adella, 8; a servant, Lucilla McCormach, 21, farm laborers, Cirillis McGrillis, 24, and John Wesley, 23.

Hiram Fender, born 1825--died 1879, was married in 1851, in the home of Harry Smith west of the Fender property, to Mary McConnell, born 1830--died 1894. They are both buried in the Polo Cemetery. To this union were born two daughters, Adella and Alice.

Adella Fender, born 1852--died 1933, married Torn Woodruff; they had two sons, Ralph and Clair. All are now deceased and buried in the Polo Cemetery.

Alice Maude Fender, born 1867--died 1928, married David Lewis Miller, 1900; they moved to Sterling, Illinois, and had one daughter, Lucia Fender Miller, born in 1902.

Lucia Fender Miller married John F. DeWind in 1928. They have two sons, David M. DeWind, born 1930, and John H. DeWind, born in 1937.

Source: A Goodly Heritage Supplement #1 Spring 1975

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