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Biographies of Hancock County, Illinois


Thomas Harris Family
of Hancock County

Contributed by Roy Christian
reccjc at hotmail.com

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The family is buried in the Harris cemetery just outside of Dallas City, Illinois.

Thomas Harris was born 16 September 1797 in Pennsylvania. His parents were John Eaton Harris and Patience Palmer. John moved his family to Kentucky where his son Thomas met Lois Ann Scott. She was born on 28 June 1807. Her and Thomas were married on 31 Dec 1824 in Kentucky before moving to Adams County Illinois. The exact year they left Kentucky and settled in Adams County is not known, but they moved to Hancock County near Dallas City in 1834 and remained there the rest of their lives.

Children of Thomas & Ann:

... Ambrose - born before 1832, died young.
... Eliza Jane - born 1832, married 21 Jan 1849 to James Nicholson.
... Alice - born 1834, no other information.
... Harriet - born Jan 1835, married 26 Feb 1852 to William Simmons.
... William H - born 13 May 1837, married 13 Dec 1858 to Mariah Jane Walker, later divorced and married Malissa Rossetters on 13 May 1868, died 21 Mar 1913 at Harmon, Oklahoma.
... Mary Elizabeth - born 10 Jan 1840, married 30 Nov 1854 to Thomas J Hannon, died 12 Feb 1916 at Shelby, Iowa.
... Charles M - born 11 Feb 1842, died 3 Feb 1869 at Dallas City, Illinois. Surrelda - born 22 Feb 1844, married 11 Aug 1861 to Josiah Kelly, died 23 Jul 1913 at Harmon, Oklahoma.
... Minerva - born 1846, married 3 Oct 1861 to James Whitney Sillaway, died 3 Jul 1870 at Dallas City, Illinois, her three children were living with grandma & grandpa Harris in 1880.
... Thomas J - born Jul 1848, married 9 Sept 1900 to Emma A Stowell, died 5 May 1920 at Hot Springs, Arkansas, no children.

Thomas Harris's father John Eaton Harris was born about 1770 in New Jersey. He married Patience Palmer about 1795 in Pennsylvania. He died in Kentucky in 1830. Thomas's mother, Patience came to Illinois and lived with her son after her husband passed away. Patience died 22 Mar 1854 and is buried at the Harris cemetery with her son.

Obituary of Lois Ann Scott:

Grandma Harris, whom we reported as sick last week, was stricken with paralysis on Thursday, September 7th, and died Thursday evening at 9 o'clock, September 13. This remarkable lady and her husband, who survives her, deserve more than merely a passing notice. Mrs. Harris was 75 years, 2 months and 16 days old at the time of her death, and funeral services took place on Mr. Harris' 85th birthday. They were married December 31st 1824. Eleven children were the result of this union; nine of whom lived to maturity, and six of whom survive their mother. They have still living 50 grand-children, and 52 great-grand-children. They settled on their present location--N.E. quarter, sec.11--April 14, 1834. At that time their nearest town was Nauvoo, which consisted of five or six cabins and one frame house. The price of government land then was $1.25 per acre. They moved from Adams county, near Quincy, to their present place. Mr. Harris, although so very old, and still suffering from the loss of his companion, for nearly 60 years appeared to be enjoying reasonably good health, and is quite active in getting around. The funeral sermon was preached by Rev. Wm. Ward, of Ferris, from 1Cor.,15th chapter, 13-14 verses; "But if there be no resurrection of the dead; then is Christ not risen; and if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain," to a large and sympathizing audience. Rev. Mr. Ward received Mr. and Mrs. Harris into full connections in the M.P.church 32 years ago. Thus has passed away one of our noble pioneer women to receive her reward at the right hand of a just God. The remains were interring in the Harris cemetery. Telegrams were sent to all the children, who reside as follows; Wm., Montgomery county, Kan.; Mary E., Shelly county, Ia.; Thomas, Edon Junction, D.T.; Zarelda, Summer county, Kan.; Harriet, Putnam county, Mo.; Eliza J., Holt county, Neb. None of them reached here in time for the funeral. William and Mary E. arrived about eight hours afterwards, having been delayed ten hours by trains failing to connect.

Last Will and Testament of Thomas Harris:
In the name of God Amen. I Thomas Harris of the Town of Dallas City in The County of Hancock and State of Illinois of the age of eighty-five years, and being of sound mind and memory, do make publish and declare this my last will and testament in manner following that is to say.
First I give and bequeath to my daughter Harriet Simmons the sum of one thousand dollars ($1000.00) which I order shall be paid to her in addition to her share in my Real Estate for her care and attention to me.
Second I give and bequeath to my children, named as follows, Liza Jane Nicholson, Harriet Simmons, William H. Harris, Mary Elizabeth Hannon, Surrelda Kelly, Thomas J. Harris, and the three minor children of my deceased daughter Minerva Sillaway, all my Real Estate consisting of my farm, described as follows: Fifty nine (59) acres off the North Side of the South East Quarter of Section Eleven, Township Seven, Range Seven and Lot No. Four of the North East Quarter of Section Eleven, Township Seven, Range Seven. And ten acres off Lot No. Three of the North East Quarter of Section Eleven, Township Seven, Range Seven of Hancock County and State of Illinois to be equally divided between them share and share alike. The above mentioned minor children of my said deceased daughter Minerva Sillaway are to receive their mothers share in said property which is to be equally divided between them share and share alike. In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this fifteenth (15th) Day of August A. D. 1883.
Thomas Harris

The above instrument, consisting of one sheet was at the date thereof signed, sealed, published and declared by the said Thomas Harris as and for his last Will and Testament in presence of us who at his request and in his presence and in the presence of each other have subscribed our names as Witnesses thereto.
Abram Clark Dallas City, Illinois
Lawson S. Bliss Dallas City, Illinois


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