Freedom Township

Carroll County Biography

In the person of the subject of this notice we have a liberal and public-spirited citizen - one who not only looks well to the ways of his farming operations and his business affairs, but keeps in view the welfare of the community around him. He does not believe in living for self alone, and while having the wise forethought which provides for the needs of himself and his family, still finds time to contribute of his time and means to the various public enterprises which have effect upon the progress and advancement of his county.

Our subject is the offspring of a good family, being the son of the late Garner Moffett, who was a native of Abingdon, Washington Co, VA. The latter married Miss Mary J.B. Davis, also born in that county, and after their marriage, leaving the Old Dominion, they emigrated first to Hancock County IN, and thence in 1836 or 1837, to this county. The father took up a tract of land in Freedom Township, from which he constructed a comfortable homestead, and where his death took place in 1856. The mother is still living, making her home in Lanark and has now arrived at an advanced age.

The father of our subject is a man of more than ordinary capacities, well educated and intelligent, progressive in his ideas, and was the first School Superintendent of Carroll County. While the incumbent of this office, he disposed of all the school lands within the county. He was a stanch Democrat, of the Stephen A. Douglas type, and took a great interest in political affairs, holding many offices of trust and responsibility. In religious matters he belonged to the Church of the Disciples and was as faithful and earnest int he performance of his pious duties as in all the other walks of life, frequently riding ten or fifteen miles to preach, for which service he would never accept any compensation. He was a friend to the poor and unfortunate and administered to their needs with a liberal hand, frequently to his own detriment. In 1847 he was made a member of the State Legislature and assisted in revising the present Constitution of Illinois. He was at one time the owner of about 1000 acres of land. He took a great interest in the Racine & Mississippi RR; indeed to such an extent that his property was in jeopardy, but his death occurred Oct. 5, 1856 of typhoid fever, before the road was fully abandoned.

To the parents of our subject there were born 5 children, all now living and residents of Illinois. John, our subject was the second son, and his birth took place in Hancock County Ind. Dec. 18, 1833. He was quite young when his parents came to this county, where he was reared to manhood, pursued his first lessons in the district school, and later attended college at Bethany VA. Then returning to the homestead he engaged in agricultural pursuits, and began forming plans for a home of his own. With this end in view, he was married in Wellsville, Columbiana Co Ohio, May 29, 1859 to Sarah A. Martin. Mrs. Moffett was the daughter of the late Mahlon and Farinda (Jackson) Martin, who were natives of Pennsylvania & Virginia. They removed from Ohio to this county about 1862, settling in Lanark, where the father engaged in general merchandising and died April 22, 1876. The mother survived her husband a little over 9 years, her death taking place June 22, 1885. Mrs. Moffett was the eldest of their 5 children and was born in Wellsville Ohio July 4, 1838.

Five children completed the household circle of our subject and his estimable wife - Lucellus H., Frank L., Edwin S., Anna A., and Elvin M. Mr. Moffett has held the office of Supervisor about 10 years successively, although during war times he was likewise its incumbent, when the duties were quite arduous. He is a man of sound judgment and excellent principles and long ago established himself in the esteem and confidence of his fellow citizens. Like his honored father, he takes a warm interest in political affairs and is a tariff reform Democrat. Both he and his wife are members of the Christian Church, attending services at Lanark. The farm comprises 260 acres of thoroughly cultivated land, and although in their manner of living Mr. Moffett and his family make no pretensions to magnificence, they still are surrounded by comfort and plenty, while the prospect of a sufficiency in their declining years. Mrs. Moffett is a lady of more than ordinary intelligence and their home is one of the most inviting places to which friend or stranger could come. She is a graduate of Pleasant Hill Seminary, Washingotn Co PA. The principal, Mrs. Reeves, was a sister of Alexander Campbell.

Portraits and Biographical 1889 Pg 965

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