Carroll County Biographies

Isaac Gillespie
Washington Township

Isaac Gillespie, one of the most successful farmers and raisers of fine stock in Carroll County, lives at the homestead, where he was born, on section 2 in Washington Twp. He there owns an excellent farm of 506 acres; part of which is located on sections 1 and 2; he has been one of the most successful breeders of Norman horses, Durham cattle and Poland-China swine in the county. He is one of the company which owns the fine six-year-old horse "Develle" which was imported by M.W. Dunham for stud purposes. The farm is especially adapted to stock-raising and is known as the "Camp Creek Valley Stock-Farm." It has spring-water on each section, a fine barn 40 x 88 feet, with basement, and the other outbuildings are all on the same scale, and are well calculated for their various purposes. The residence is one of the best in the neighborhood. All of these improvements have been made by Mr. Gillespie since he became the owner of the place. He has now nearly twice as much land as he had when he began, and this success is altogether due to his own efforts. He is a live, progressive man, and keeps up with the times in everything.

Our subject was born Aug. 29, 1852, and is the eldest of the children born to James and Margaret (McKeague) Gillespie, both of whom died on this place; the father in August, 1875 at the age of 55 years, and the mother in Feb. 1877 aged 61. The elder Gillespie was a representative citizen, and was one of the pioneers of Carroll County and Washington Township, settling in the latter in 1849. He was born in County Monaghan, Ireland of Irish parents. He was educated in its common schools and in the year 1849 accompanied his parents ot America. Landing in New York City they came West via the Canal, and Lakes to the Ohio River, then down that stream to the Mississippi and on to St. Louis MO. Their stay at the latter place was short, and a little later we fine them in Savanna. they at once settled down on the farm where Isaac now lives, and there remained until death claimed them. They were good upright and intelligent people and were held in esteem by their neighbors. The country was at that time wild and only partially settled, and they had to endure many of the privations and hardships incident to the life of pioneers, but their courage was sustained by an absolute faith in the future. Both were good Christians and members of the United Presbyterian Church.

Our subject and one sister are not the only survivors of the parental family. Jennie, the sister, is the wife of William Elliott, a prosperous farmer of Woodland Township, this county. Isaac Gillespie was carefully reared and trained by his parents and was started in life by them as a farmer. Nov. 7, 1885 he was united in marriage, in Pleasant Valley Township, Jo Davies County, with Miss Tillie White, a native of that township, and born Sept. 1, 1860. Her father, James White was one of the early settlers of this county, where he first located int he year 1841; after making ahome for his prospective bride he went back to the State of Rhode Island, and was there married to Miss Eliza Frazier. Both were natives of the North of Ireland and had come when quite young to this country with their parents, all of whom settled in Rhode Island. Immediately after their marriae the young couple came West to take possession of the the home in Pleasant Valley Twp. There the father lived and worked until he was called from earth in January, 1877. The mother still lives on the old home farm and is now about 66 years old. Both the parents were members of the Unite Presbyterian Church, and were greatly esteemed in the community of which they were members. Mr. White had been a very successful farmer and stock-raiser and an active worker in all local affiars, in which he took a leading part.

Mrs. Gillespie was the seventh child in a family of nine - two sons and seven daughters. She was carefully trained and reared by her parents, with whom she remained until her marriage. She is the mother of two children, one ow who died in infancy, the other, James E., is a bright and intelligent little lad of about three years. Mr. and Mrs. Gillespie are both active members of the United Presbyterian Church of Zion Grove, of which Mr. G. has been an Elder since becoming of age. Although never seeking office he has been elected Supervisor of the township, and has discharged the duties of that position with fidelity and care. Politically he is a Republican, and in the social life of the township he and his wife occupy a prominent place.

Portraits & Biographical Carroll County 1889 Pg 896

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