Named after Christian County in Kentucky through the influence of emigrants from that county.
Established February 15, 1839 as Dane County (Laws, 1839, p. 104). Name changed to Christian County in 1840.
GEORGE ARMITAGE is a practical farmer of Bear Creek Township, and has lived on his farm, which is located on section 5, for thirty years. This is a well-improved piece of property, known by the name of Pleasant View Farm. The owner has of late years engaged in stock-raising extensively, making a specialty of fine grades of cattle and hogs. He has been a witness of much of the development of the county, and has seen its transformation from an uncultivated prairie to its present condition of thrifty farms and enterprising villages.
Our subject's paternal grandfather, Thomas Armitage, was a native of England, and was an agriculturist. His family consisted of four sons and one daughter, and after living a long and useful life he was called to the home beyond.
His son, Arthur, who became the father of our subject, was reared to the life of a farmer, but in later years was a manufacturer. He married Elizabeth Stead, daughter of Benjamin M. Stead, who was a foreman in a shoe manufactory. He was a member of the Society of Friends, and was over seventy years of age at the time of his death.
The parents of our subject passed their entire lives in England, where they died within two weeks of each other. They had a family of three sons and three daughters, and of the number George is probably the only one now living.
Like his father, our subject was reared on a farm, and when nineteen years of age he concluded to try his fortune in the United States. This was in 1841, and he was born March 1, 1822. On his arrival, he at once turned his face toward the West, going to live with an uncle in Macoupin County, Ill., near the village of Harris Point. After remaining with him for a year, he went to Zanesville, where he spent one winter.
About this time he undertook to learn the tanner's trade, but on account of sickness was obliged to give up the idea, and in a short time resumed agricultural pursuits. In 1844 he rented a farm of thirty-five acres, and thus got his first start in business life.
After his marriage, in 1845, he purchased a farm of thirty acres, adjoining a tract of fifty acres in Sangamon County which belonged to his wife. As his resources allowed, he added land until their joint possessions comprised three hundred acres.
The marriage of Mr. Armitage and Miss Frances M. Crow was celebrated January 27, 1845. She is a daughter of Robert and Margaret (Cashner) Crow, the former a native of Ireland, while the mother was a native of Maryland and of German descent. Four children have been born to our subject and his wife.
Uriah G. married Miss Eliza Loveless, and is engaged in farming one mile west of the old homestead. They have two sons, Clarence E. and Homer. Margaret A. resides with her parents. Robert B., who wedded Miss Jane Craig, has two children, Roy and Bessie, and is a resident of Willow Ford, this county. Edward C., who married Miss Alice Prime, and is the father of two children, Bertha and Ray, is a resident of Virden, Ill.
Selling his farm of three hundred acres in Sangamon County, Mr. Armitage removed to this county in November, 1863, and invested his means in a place of two hundred and seventy acres, where he still continues to live. He has since added more land, and now owns three hundred and sixty acres.
He raises fine Durham cattle [ed., shorthorn cattle] and Berkshire and Poland-China hogs. He has held a number of local offices, such as School Director, Road Commissioner, etc., and has used his influence in securing good roads and other improvements beneficial to the people and county at large. He is a Mason of longstanding, and, politically, is a Democrat. With his family he holds membership with the Presbyterian Church.
© Judy Edwards and Genealogy Trails