PETER HYZER

Shannon Township


Carroll County Biography



Few men living in the northeastern part of this county are more widely and favorably known than Mr. Hyzer. He was one of the pioneer settlers of Shannon Township, removing within its borders as early as 1858 - 36 years ago. He had emigrated to this region from Delaware County NY, making his way to Chicago by railroad, and there bought a railroad ticket to Rockford. Upon reaching that point he found the train was going on through to Freeport; this being its trial trip a a passenger train from Chicago to the latter place. he stayed at Freeport over night, and in the morning found a team from Brookville waiting for him, which had been sent up by his brother, who had emigrated to that point five years previously.

Our subject soon afterward purchased 80 acres of his present farm in Shannon Twp. and later secured another 80 acres from the heirs of his brother, who had died. The first mentioned was entirely new, and Mr. Hyzer himself turned the first furrow, set out the first tree and put up a little frame house sixteen feet square. He lived there with his wife until about 1863, when the house was destroyed by fire, and then he put up a larer one, which is still standing. When first coming here, Mr. Hyzer was obliged to get his provisions at Brookville, six miles away. He hauled most of his produce to Freeport, and for some time there was not a house between him and a point five miles southwest of Freeport. There was but one house in Forreston, and none upon the present site of Shannon.

In due time there was organized in the neighborhood of our subject School District No. 9 and he wsa made the first Director, holding the office 9 years in succession. He was one of the building committee duirng the erection of the first school house and also the second. At first there were only four families in District No. 9. Mr. Hyzer later wsa elected Justice of the Peace, holding that office for many years. He cast his first Presidential vote for Gen. Winfield Scott, prior to the organization of the Republican party, belonging then to the old-line Whigs. His next vote was cast for Abraham Lincoln, and since that time he has given his hearty support to the Republicans party.

A native of Delaware County NY our subject was born Feb. 4, 1829 and lived there until settiing out for the West. He obtained a practical education in the common school, and at an early age acquainted himself with business methods, so that when 21 years old he was engaged as foreman of a leather factory in NY which position he held for four years. While a resident of NY he was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth Hoyt, a native of NY and who departed this life at her home in this county in 1881. To them were born Andrew H. now a resident of Storm Lake Iowa; Sarah, Mrs. Henry Cheeseman is also a resident of that place; Abraham Lincoln, born on the day of Lincoln's first election to the Presidency, is engaged at farming, and is also a resident of Storm Lake; and Emma became the wife of Merrit Hoffman.

Our subject contracted a second marriage, March 23, 1882 in Hortonville Wis. with Miss Harriet C. Davis who wsa born Oct. 4, 1850 in the same neighborhood as her husband. Of this union there are two sons - Walter P. and John B aged 6 and 3 years respectively. The father of our subject was Peter Hyzer, also a native of Delaware County NY and the son of Peter Hyzer Sr. who was the first settler of Andes, in that county. The maiden name of the mother was Elizabeth Ladd. The parents after their marriage spent the remainder of their lives upon a farm in NY and the father also conducted a tannery. He died about 1879 at the age of 80. He emigrated to Michigan about 1862. Prior to this he came to Illinois, and made a claim to the land upon which the city of Aurora now stands, but finally abandoned it.

Portraits and Biographical 1889 Pg 853

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