Tyrone Township lies south of Goode
and joins Perry County on the west.
The name Tyrone was selected as the name of the township when it was first organized. The name was taken from
the name of an old steamboat that plied on the waters of the Mississippi River. Charles Tinsley was captain of this steamboat for many
years and being an early settler and a man of influence, the name of the steamboat was voted as the
name of the township.
John Kirkpatrick seems to
have been the first settler in the township, settling on what is now the Reid farm on Little Muddy Creek,
in 1818. Barzilla Silkwood and the Tinsleys
came soon afterwards, so likewise did the Mulkeys.
Old Mulkeytown sprung into existence
in the very early day; the trading point took its name from the Mulkey family. John Mulkey
put up the first store in 1835. The Mulkeys
have been very prominent in the the history of the county.
Judge Mulkey, who became very
prominent as a jurist, sprang from this family of Mulkeys in the county.
The Mulkeys and John Kirkpatrick were related. They held religous
meetings at the home of John Kirkpatrick
soon after his coming to Franklin County
As a result of the meetings, a church was organized in about 1823, which became known as the "Christian
Church", being the first organized in the state of Illinois. For nearly a century the Mulkeys and Kirkpatricks have been identified with this old church. From this church's influence more than
eleven Christian Churches have been organized.
Later the Harrisons, Bayless, Prices, Plumlees, Rogers, Means,
Davis, Swishers, Greenwoods, Arteberrys, Dees, Tefferkellers, McClellands, Snyders, Capelands, Reids, Keonigs,
Hills, Browns, Faggs, Eubanks, Ethertons, Moyers, and Cook families came into the township and Tyrone township began to develop rapidly.
What is known now as the I. C. R. R. was built through the county in 1879-80. Isham Harrison had part of his farm laid outinto town lots,
soon new Mulkeytown became a thriving
village. Mulkeytown has not been a mushroom
town, but has had a steady growth, the citizenship of the staid old town has been of a high character,
standing for good schools and good moral citizenship. The people of the vicinity of Mulkeytown have ever been characterized as church-going people.
In the eastern part of Tyrone and
in Browning Township, settles a family of people destine to play an important part in the history of the
county. This was the Harrison
family. They seem to have been related to the Virginia stock of Harrisons , and of close kin to William Henry Harrison of "Tippecanoe
fame" who became president.
The founder of the Harrison Clan
in this county was Isham Harrison
who, coming into the county about 1814, settled southeast of what is now the city of Christopher. Isham
Harrison was shutup in the Fort Jordan during the indian trouble of 1812. He, like John
Browning, selected a site on the west of Big Muddy for his place of settlement.
Along with him two grown sons came and settled near by. When Illinois almost reached statehood and Franklin County had been organized, Harrison was sent to Kaskaskia, then the capitol, to help
frame the first Constitution of Illinois.
The greatest question in the convention was the slavery question. Harrison, though a slave owner, stood against a slavery clause in our constitution. On Aug. 26, the
convention had finished its work. The Constitution of Illinois was never ratified by the people.
Lemuel Harrison, a son of
Isham Harrison, was the first
surveyor and county commissioner of the county. He surveyed out the first town on Frankfort Hill. His two sons,
Isham and Christopher, were the founders of the two largest towns in
Tyrone-Christopher and Mulkeytown.
Christopher Harrison, a son
of Lemuel R. Harrison, was one
of the 49 dying of cholera and was buried at Independence, Mo. His cousin was with him and went on to California,
but returned in a short time and married the widow of his cousin. Christopher
Harrison owned land where the city of Christopher is now located.
His two sons, F.O. and Sydney, had the town named Christopher in honor of their father.
The town did not grown fast at first. Bolliver Farris put up the first store then later sold to Walker
Bros., who continued the store. Then came Horace
Shepherd, who became apartner of Farris. Mr. Shepherd
was an original boomer of Christopher
has been with the city during all its growth, he having died a short time ago.
In the early days of Christopher
the postmaster would carry the mail to the train and most of the citizens of the town would accompany him to
see the "cars come in." Many jokes were made on Christopher in those early days but ere long the
staid old town took on a new life. Coal was located and mines developed. An energetic bunch of real estate
men began to push Christopher and soon
it was a fast growing town.
The building of the C. B. & Q. Railroad and the great coal development has transformed the little
village of Christopher into one of
the best cities in the county. Christopher
has four large coal mines lying near, with an output that is enormous. The population of Christopher is about 8,000.
Tyrone has the following schools: Robtown, Cane Creek, Blue Grass, Long Beach, Mulkeytown, Arkansas, Christopher,
North City, Valier.The churches of the town ship are: Baptist - Christopher and Valier; Methodist - Greenwood,
Valier and Christopher; Christian-Mulkeytown and Christopher; Catholic - Christpher; Free Baptist -Christopher.
Politically, Tyrone is Democratic but often times Republicans carry the township. The present supervisor is Joe Bacon.
The town of Valier on the C.B.& Q.
R.R. is a lively place. There are two large mines near and indications point to it as a very important city of
[(1918) Franklin County History Centennial Edition by H.M. AIKEN]