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Henderson County, Illinois

James M. Akin
James M. Akin, superintendent of schools of Henderson County, is the oldest in a family of ten children. His parents, John G. and Eliza (Connell) Akin, are natives of Columbiana, but reside in Muskingum county. The Akin family, four generations ago, came from Ireland, but were more remotely Scotch. They are a long lived people, the mother of John G., and grandmother of James M., yet living and active, at nearly a hundred years of age. James M., the principal subject of these memoirs, was born in Tuscarawas county, Ohio, February 14, 1845. His educational training was acquired in the common schools near his home, and in the academy of Cambridge, Guernsey County, Ohio. Before seventeen years of age he began teaching in the common schools of the country. He was a pupil when the directors, for cause, dismissed the teacher, and requested James to finish the term of school. James hesitated, and sent them to his father, who allowed the youth to choose for himself. The school was taught successfully five months. He continued his school work and in 1866 came to Warren county, Illinois where he taught till 1870. He then became principal of the Biggsville schools, retaining the position for three years. He then taught at Olena, and in 1875 was elected principal of the Oquawka public schools. In 1877 Mr. Akin was elected to the county superintendency for the duties of which he is eminently fitted. Mr. Akin was married August 3, 1871 to Miss Lizzie daughter of Samuel and Ortha (Callahan) Arthurs, and a native of Pennsylvania. They have one child, Orland H. Mr. and Mrs. Akin are connected with the Presbyterian church. He is a member of the order of Odd-Fellows. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 998)

James O. Anderson
James O. Anderson, sheriff of Henderson county, is a son of Alexander and Harriet (Davis) Anderson. He was born August 1, 1845, in Henderson county, Illinois. His youth was spent on the farm. His education was largely derived from public schools, yet he was a student at Monmouth College during the early part of the war. He was too young for service at the outbreak, but as soon as age would allow, he could not restrain the desire to do what he could toward putting down the cruel slaughter, so enlisted May 6, 1864, in Co. A, 138th Ill. He was discharged after about four months' service. He then re-enlisted in Co. H, 28th Ill., and served till 1866. In his last term of service he aided in the capture of Mobile. He enlisted a private each time, but in his second service was promoted to sergeant, then orderly sergeant. Was commissioned second lieutenant, but the company being below the number required in order to claim commissioned officers, he could not muster as such. The war over, he returned to his home and engaged in farming till 1876, when he was elected sheriff of Henderson county, and re-elected in 1878 and 1880. Mr. Anderson was married March 6, 1867, to Rhoda B. Paul, daughter of Judge M. C. Paul, of Terre Haute, Illinois. She was born in New York, Jefferson county, October 28, 1844. Three children have been born to them: Francis M., Edwin A., and Eva M. Mr. Anderson is prominent in both odd-fellowship and masonry, and a leading member of the Methodist church.  (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 990-991)

John Biggs
John Biggs was born in Manchester, England, in 1802. His father was crushed to death by an engine when John was about fourteen years of age, necessitating many severe experiences in the career of the boy. He became ship-boy on the Queen Charlotte, in the British navy, and took part in the battle of Algiers. He visited many parts of the world. About 1820, at the age of eighteen years, he landed in New England. He subsequently secured at situation in a factory in Philadelphia. He next spent about ten years in building mills and cotton factories in Texas. In 1843, Mr. Biggs came to Oquawka, but soon purchased the Robinson and Birdsall flouring mills near what is now Biggsville. The floods soon washed the mill away and Mr. Biggs erected the present flouring mills of Biggsville. He was an excellent workman, and highly respected. His death occurred December 30, 1852. Biggsville is so named in his honor. His oldest son, William, was killed about two weeks previous, crushed by the burrs. Of his children, one is buried in Texas, one in Philadelphia, and one in South Henderson. Three daughters living, are Mrs. Mary Barton, Mrs. Margaret Jempson and Caroline. Of his sons, Thomas enlisted in Co. G, 84th Ill. Vol., and died in the hospital near Nashville. Iram is one of the proprietors of the "Galesburg Plaindealder." John is foreman in the "Madisonian" printing office. Mrs. Biggs (Charlotte Ordway), widow of the deceased, John Biggs, resides with the son, Robert in Oquawka.  Robert was born July 24, 1839. In August, 1862, he enlisted in Co. C, 91st Ill. He was captured by Morgan in 1862. He afterward was engaged at Mobile, Blakely and Spanish Fort. Since the war closed Robert Biggs has been a faithful clerk of the Moirs. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 989-990)

Davis S. Brainard
Davis S. Brainard was born in the state of Connecticut, March 26, 1821. When about four years of age his father died, leaving him to the care of a cold and indifferent world. In 1838 he came to Oquawka and here soon became engaged to Mr. S. S. Phelps, accompanying him on his trading expeditions among the Indians. He also worked for Col. J. B. Patterson a number of years, and for a short time was a student in one of the early schools here, taught by Rev. Mr. Stebbins. Mr. Brainard took an active part in the Methodist Episcopal church in its early history, having come here as a licensed exhorter. He filled that position for many years, as well as class leader and superintendent of Sabbath school. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 1002)

Benjamin K. Chard
Among those who are termed "old settlers" but not classed with the pioneers, is Benjamin K. Chard, of this notice. He was born in Steuben county, Indiana, March 6, 1840, and is a son of Charles Chard and Sarah Ann Willett, the former of Ohio and the latter a native of Pennsylvania. Mr. Chard of this review has an Anglo-French ancestry, his patronymic being of English origin while the Willetts were of French blood. Charles Chard settled in Indiana in an early day and some years later moved into Illinois. In 1877 he came into Kansas, keeping pace with the march of settlement and civilization. He was born in 1807 and died in 1893, while his wife died ten years earlier at sixty-five years old.  Benjamin K. Chard was the third of eight children and was reared in Indiana and Illinois and acquired a very limited education, in fact he was unable to write when he entered the army. His surroundings were rural and his opportunities were very poor.
December 22, 1837, Rachel Smith was born in Wayne county, Indiana, and July 3, 1860, she became the wife of Benjamin K. Chard. August 7, 186_ - Mr. Chard enlisted in Company G, 84th Illinois infantry and his brigade was a part of the Army of the Cumberland. He saw some of the hard fighting of the war was in the battle of Stone River, Chicamauga [sic], and Marietta, and in the last named place he was wounded by a musket ball passing through his right ankle. He served till the war was over and at its close was discharged at Springfield, Illinois. He engaged in farming rented land in Henderson county, Illinois, remaining in that state till 1871 when he came to Kansas and entered government land in Neosho county. His claim was in the south-west portion of Grant township and all the years of his labor and care since then have converted it into one of the desirable farmsteads of the township.
Eleven children were born to our subject and wife, six of whom died in infancy. Those living are, William Henry; Mary E., wife of Alexander Tredway; Sarah A., wife of Geo. A. Walters, of Illinois; Olive L., wife of John M. Herrin, and Benjamin Franklin, at home. Mrs. Chard's father was William S. Smith, who married Elizabeth Sands, who died in 1858 at forty-six years of age. They had a family of ten children of whom six are living.  Mr. Chard is a Republican. [Source: History of Neosho and Wilson Counties, Kansas, Pub. by L. Wallace Duncan, Fort Scott, Kansas, Monitor Printing Co., 1902; transcribed by Vicki Bryan]

Rauseldon Cooper
Rauseldon Cooper, the present state's attorney for Henderson county, was born December 24, 1845, near Milton, Wayne County, Indiana. His parents were John and Martha Cooper. At the age of two years his mother died and he was sent to live with his grandmother, Elizabeth Cooper and his uncle Moses Cooper who lived in the vicinity where he was born. In 1852 his uncle Moses came to Henderson County bringing young Rauseldon with him, and settled in Greenville precinct. He attended school in Aurora district. In 1863 he entered Lombard college, at Galesburg, Illinois, as a student, graduating in 1869 with the degree of B. S. From here he went to his father's, who married again and was living in Bald Bluff' precinct, where he engaged in farming. Growing weary of agricultural pursuits, in 1873 he entered Michigan University, at Ann Arbor, as a student of law, graduating in 1875. He returned to Henderson county and selected it as a field in which to engage in practice, and located at Oquawka. He was elected a justice of the peace in 1877, and secretary of the Oquawka school board in 1879. In 1880 he was elected to his present position. September 14, 1875, he married Miss Susie E., daughter of Opdike Cummins, Esq., of Ann Arbor, Michigan, by whom he has three children.  (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 991)

Thadeus Eames
Thadeus Eames, the subject of this sketch, came to Henderson county an old man and is now ninety-four years of age, being the oldest man but one in the county. He is the son of Joseph and Mary (Rice) Eames, and was born in 1790, in Worcester county, Massachusetts. His ancestry was English, having come over before the revolutionary war, in which his father fought as a private soldier. When he was about one year old his parents removed to Oneida county, New York, where he received his education in the common school. In 1835 he emigrated to Henderson County, Illinois. Mr. Eames was married on January 4, 1814 to Miss Orinda Cooper. To them were born five sons, of whom but one, Albert, is living. The eldest, Franklin died of consumption in 1848; the second, Joseph, a grocer of Oquawka, died of cholera on a boat on the Mississippi coming home from St. Louis, where he had been buying goods; the fourth son, Obadiah, of Red Wing, Minnesota, died in 1880, leaving to his family a very large estate; the youngest son, O. H. Perry, was also a victim of consumption. In 1853, five years after the death of his first wife, Mr. Eames was married again to Mary Elizabeth Sumner. Mr. Eames began life with nothing; he has now two beautiful farms of 320 acres each, on one of which he resides. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 1000)

Mitchell M. Findley
The subject of this sketch, Mitchell M. Findley, son of Matthew and Elizabeth (Blackburn) Findley, was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, August 27, 1823. His father, who was a native of Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, in which state he passed his early youth, emigrated to Muskingum county, Ohio, when about twenty years of age, and there married. In 1835 he removed with his family of six children to Warren county, Illinois, near where Kirkwood now stands. At this time there were but four houses in the town of Monmouth. Our subject received his education in the schools of Oquawka and vicinity. He has been engaged for many years in tilling the soil on his farm of 240 acres, which lies in Sec. 26, T. 11, R. 5. Mr. Findley has been, from the beginning of its organization a firm believer in the principles of the republican party, though he has never gone into politics. His political preference may probably be traced to the fact that his father before him was a whig, and voted with the republicans at the first change. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 1001-1002)

G. F. William Froehlich
G. F. William Froehlich, the present efficient county clerk, was born March 21, 1835, in Rheinisch, Prussia, and is the seventh child in a family of thirteen. His parents, Peter and Johanna Froehlich, were natives of Rheinisch, and there died. Peter Froehlich was a tanner by trade, and was a soldier under Napoleon Bonaparte. G. F. Wm. Froehlich, the subject of these memoirs, was schooled in Prussia, graduating from the high school of Bonn, in preparation for college. He relinquished the projected college course, and became a clerk in a chemical factory for one year. In 1852, in May, he set sail at Liverpool, England, on the vessel Warbler, for America. After fifty-two days' sailing the vessel reached New Orleans. Mr. Froehlich came up the Mississippi to Warsaw, Illinois, but very soon came to Oquawka, and became clerk for Frederick Odendahl. In the spring of 1853 he went to Warsaw where he became an apprentice to the harness trade, working two and a half years. He then followed the trade at different places. In 1859, and part of 1860, he taught a German American school. When war's cruel tongue called for brave men to put down rebellion and slavery, Mr. Froehlich thought of duty to country, for although he was not American born, he was an American citizen. he enlisted April 22, 1861, in Co. D. 10th Ill. Inf. from Oquawka for the three months' service. When discharged he re-enlisted in Co. G, 10th Mo. Inf., of which was made orderly sergeant, and so continued till near the close of the war. The principal battles in which he was engaged were: Corinth, Iuka, second Corinth, Jackson, Chamption Hills, Siege of Vicksburg; was in the Yazoo Pass expedition, at Missionary Ridge, and much skirmishing. At the battle of Corinth, October 4, 1862, he was wounded in the right leg. He was discharged September 11, 1864, at Carterville, Georgia. He served from 1864 to 1865 in the ordinance department of the service. In 1865 he returned to Oquawka for a permanent home. He engaged as clerk, and served as constable a year. He then became deputy sheriff. In 1866 was made deputy assessor, also. In 1866 was made deputy assessor, also. In 1868 he became deputy county and deputy circuit, clerk. In 1877 he was elected county clerk, which office he still holds with ability. Since 1879 he has been town clerk, and has been notary public for a number of years. Mr. Froehlich was married in 1865, to Mrs. Margaret Herbertz, a native of Prussia, and whose family at that time numbered four children. Mr. Froehlich is deeply interested in compiling a soldiers' record, and deserves aid in gathering biographical matter pertaining to those who have fought the battles of the union. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 996-997)

Charles W. Green
To a soldier who fought and bled for his country, these lines are dedicated. Charles W. Green was born June 17, 1834, in Herkimer county, New York, and is a son of William R. and Avis (Burlingham) Green. When Charles was very small his parents moved to Indiana, and settled in the woods to make a farm. He, Charles, received his schooling more in hard work than books. In 1848 his people came to Oquawka, Illinois; Charles hired to work on a farm, which business he followed several years. January 1, 1857, he was married to Miss Florence Armstrong, daughter of Thomas and Sarah Armstrong, of Oquawka. She was born in Boston, August 11, 1840. Mr. Green continued farming till his services were needed in putting down the rebellion. He enlisted, July 21, 1862, in Co. G, 84th Ill. Inf. At the memorable battle of Stone river, December 31, 1862, he was present. Many remember the snow and rain that fell. Mr. Green, to protect him as much as possible during the night, lay on some rails and under a stretcher. The terrible day of carnage dawned on hostile armies. In battle the boys in blue were lying low that the enemy's fire might pass above them. Soldier Green was leaning his elbow on a rock, aiming and firing accurately. He was shot while in this positing, the ball grazing his nose, passing through the left eye completely destroying it. He reeled and fell. His comrade at once called him to get up or he would be taken. The enemy was then almost upon them. Green replied to his comrade "Leave me alone," then again he exclaimed "Give 'em h--l, Drummond!" He knew nothing more. Drummond was taken prisoner. The rebels rode thick and close to Green's body, whose life was thought to have gone out. He lay three days, declared dead on the field of battle. But signs of life were at last recognized. It was Sunday morning a week after the battle when he distinguished Surgeon McDill's voice, and called him. The snow and rain was a dream to him and it was said that he first pronounced the last words of the exclamation he addressed to his comrade, Drummond, when shot. Mr. Green was discharged February 9, 1863. His eye has given him much trouble, it having been necessary to probe it to remove pieces of bone. After he so far recovered that he could labor, he was employed by John McKinney, of Oquawka, to do what he was able in the store. In March, 1864, he undertook to learn photography and went to Kirkwood, but the business disagreeing with him he returned to Oquawka. He became assistant postmaster. November 5, 1864, he was sworn postmaster, and has deservingly held the office since. In politics Mr. Green was a democrat at the opening of the war, but the rebellion made him a republican. He has a family of two children, George R., and Raymond. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 988-989)

Robert Hodson
Robert Hodson, perhaps does a business more extensive than any other firm in Oquawka at this time. Mr. Hodson's parents, Thomas and Sarah (Atkinson) Hodson, were natives of England. In, 1836 Thomas Hodson sent his wife and children to America, where his wife's people were already settled. He remained to settle his business in England. The family arrived safely at Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Word was received by the family that Mr. Hodson would sail at a certain date. This was the last word ever received. The vessel that was to start at that time was lost and it is supposed on good grounds that he was lost with the crew. After residing a year in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the family moved, with Mrs. Hodson's brother, to Wellsville, Ohio, remaining there about ten years. Mrs. Hodson then married and came with her husband to Indiana; then to live near Peoria, where she died. In the family were five children, one of whom is dead; John A., in the grocery business at Peoria; James, a machinist in Pennsylvania; Thomas, a farmer in Missouri; and Robert. Robert Hodson, the third child, was born in Yorkshire, England, April 11, 1882, hence was young when he emigrated and when deprived of his father's guardian care. His school advantages were very meager. At twelve years of age he left home to learn the tinner's trade with his brother at Pittsburg, remaining with him one year. Disliking the business he went to live with a farmer Quaker, Thomas James, with whom he lived and for whom he worked for three years, receiving his board and clothes and three months schooling each year as recompense. He then lived with his mother and step father in Indiana, working one summer in a brick yard, then on a farm, when he again made his home with the Quaker farmer in Ohio and attended school one winter. Early the following spring he started to Texas. He journeyed as far New Orleans, then up the Mississippi river to Henderson county, Illinois in 1846. He worked nine months for O. Edmunds, then went to the pineries on Black river. There he remained three years lumbering. In the fall of 1851 he returned and opened a small store in Shokogan. He was then a merchant. In the spring of 1852 he went to California, starting April 20, crossing the plains with ox teams, arriving in California August 20th. He engaged in mining with considerable success until 1856, when he returned and bought the Bake interest in the Scott & Bake saw mill at Oquawka. In 1857 he sold. He soon engaged in the drug and grocery business with Caswell and Bearce, continuing for eight years, when he purchased the interests of his partners. He has enlarged his business since. He has also shipped considerable stock for the last four years. He also superintends his farming interests. The official tables of Oquawka indicate a long local public life, significant of the trust the people repose in him. Mr. Hodson was married January 6, 1859 to Adaline Phelps, daughter of Stephen and Phebe (Chase) Phelps. She was born in Oquawka, November 29, 1838. Her early playmates were the little Indians. Mr. and Mrs. Hodson's children have numbered three. One died in infancy, Arthur when a little boy and Hattie died at the age of sixteen.  (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 993-994)

William R. Jamison
William R. Jamison located in Henderson County in 1829. For many years he engaged in farming about seven miles southeast of Oquawka, but later he moved into Oquawka and engaged in business with Alexander Moir. (Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois, Newton Bateman, Paul Selby, Josiah Seymour Currey, James W. Gordon, Charles Josiah Scofield, Brookhaven Press, 1911, p. 623)

Alexander R. Lant
Early as a settler of Neosho county and widely known as a citizen of Ladore township, Alexander R. Lant represents the interests of the industrious farmer and has borne a modest part in the internal development of his county. He was born in Washington county, New York, on the 17th of September, 1839, his parents being Casper and Ortha (Bruce) Lant, the former of New York and the latter of Massachusetts. The family came west to Illinois in 1840 and settled in Henderson county where the father died at ninety and the mother at eighty-eight years of age.
A. R. Lant was the seventh in a family of nine children and was brought up on a farm and limitedly educated in the common schools of Illinois. On the 12th of July, 1862, he enlisted in Company C, 91st Illinois infantry. The first battle in which he fought was Porterville, Kentucky, and at the battle of Bowling Green he was captured by General Morgan's command, paroled and sent to Columbus for exchange. He rejoined the army and was in the siege and capture of Vicksburg, after which his regiment was sent to Texas where many skirmishes were participated in while reducing that state. Returning to the east the regiment took part in the battle of Mobile at which place our subject was discharged on the expiration of his time.
In resuming civil life Mr. Lant took up farming at his old home and continued in that state till his departure for Kansas in 1870. He provided the funds for the deeding of the farm he now occupies from the government and came into possession of it through this source. He owns one hundred and eighty-five acres, with improvements in keeping with the times, the enjoyment of which is his delight in the evening of life. He passed through the scourge of hardship and trouble in the early day, having, at times, neither money nor much to eat, and doing a job of work wherever he could get it and at almost whatever price. If work was scarce he cut stove wood, hauled it to Parsons and sold it at a dollar a load, which represented the earnings of himself and team for two days.
October 29, 1868, Mr. Lant married Mary H. Stewart, a native of Lancaster, Missouri, and a daughter of ___ Stewart. May 3, 1899, Mrs. Lant died at forty-nine years old, leaving five children, viz., Edwin R, Frank E., Bertha, wife of Charles Yazell, of Parsons, and Irene and Eugene. [Source: History of Neosho and Wilson Counties, Kansas, Pub. by L. Wallace Duncan, Fort Scott, Kansas, Monitor Printing Co., 1902; transcribed by Vicki Bryan]

Samuel Logan
Honey Creek Township -- Samuel Logan was born in Pennsylvania October 24, 1784, enlisted in the War of 1812 for 1 year and was honorably discharged from the service at the expiration of his time. As soon as he was discharged he bought a farm in Fayette County, Indiana, then an unbroken forest which he cleared. But soon the people poured in and the place lost its frontier cast and with that restless spirit so characteristic of men who have become inured to its hardships and fascinated with its incidents, he could no longer enjoy his home. In 1838 he sold his farm and with his family moved to this county. There then was plenty of game, such as deer, turkey and grouse and fishing was fine. This latter sport he followed up to the time of his death, December 28, 1859. [Source:"Henderson County, Illinois History", 1882 - Sub by Suzanne Miller]

Harry F. McAllister
Harry F. McAllister, the present efficient circuit clerk, was born in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, April 27, 1840. His father was born near Philadelphia. He was of Scotch descent. For some time prior to and up to his death he was prothonotary of Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania. He died in 1849. His wife survives. She is also a native of Pennsylvania. Mr. H. F. McAllister received but a limited education as his father died when Harry was yet young, leaving the family in meager circumstances. At the age of fourteen Harry began clerking in Rock Island, Illinois. He next spent three years in Milwaukee and vicinity, in making abstracts of titles, eminently fitted for such work by his efficiency in penmanship. In the spring of 1861 he came to Oquawka, but soon went to Geneseo, Illinois. He returned in the fall to Oquawka, and became engaged in the circuit clerk's office. He continued Mr. Hugh L. Thomson's deputy circuit clerk until 1868, when he was promoted to the circuit clerkship by the ballot of the people and has been re-elected in 1872, 1876, and 1880. In 1866 he was appointed notary public; in 1872 master in chancery for Henderson county by Judge A. A. Smith. In 1874 he was elected township treasurer, all of which offices he still fills with credit. For the past six years he has been a member of the republican state central committee. He is a member of the masonic fraternity. Mr. McAllister was married August 30, 1866, to Miss Esther, daughter of Christian and Sarah (Nye) Root a native of New York State. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 995-996)

William and Agnes (Petrie) Moir
William and Agnes (Petrie) Moir, natives of Forres, Scotland, emigrated to America in 1833. Their oldest son, Alexander, went to Demarara, in 1828, and came to New York city in 1844. He returned to Scotland, but came back to America , and in 1847 to Oquawka, Illinois, where he died September 21, 1858. Their sons William and James emigrated in 1831 and 1832, respectively followed by their parents, as stated in 1833, accompanied by the other brothers and sister, John, Robert and Agnes. Their residence was made in New York City, where they became engaged in mercantile business. James came to Oquawka in 1843, William and Robert in 1847. For further notes on the Moirs we refer the reader to the history of Oquawka. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882)

Fredrick Odendahl
Fredrick Odendahl, deceased, was born in Cologne, Prussia, February 11, 1822. In the summer of 1847 he left his native home, sailing for America, and landing in August of the same year. On April 14, 1849, he was united in marriage with Miss Ernestine Froehlich, at Nauvoo, Illinois. Here their first son was born July 16, 1850, and they called his name William. In the fall of the same year they came to Oquawka and engaged in merchandising in the grocery and provision line, following the business until the outbreak of the rebellion. At that time he at once responded to the call of his adopted country for troops and enlisted in Co. D, 10th Ill. Vol. Inf., April 23, 1861, to serve three months. He was discharged at the close of the time for which he enlisted and joined the 17th reg. Mo. Inf. as a member of Company D, where he faithfully served his country till discharged on account of disability caused by inflammatory rheumatism. He participated in the battles of Wilson's Creek, Pea Ridge, and many others during that stirring campaign under Gen. Austerhaus. He died August 24, 1877, and his venerable widow is still living, with her son William, who is now in the mercantile trade in Oquawka. They have one other son, Carl Julius, born in Oquawka September 16, 1853, and married to Miss Viola Rossiter. He is now in Loup City, Nebraska, in the drug business, and has one child, Fredrick E. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 1005)

Dr. Cephas Park
Dr. Cephas Park, the oldest physician of Henderson county was born in Rutland county, Vermont, November 8, 1819. His parents, John and Sophia (Broughton) Park, were natives of Vermont, but finally emigrated to Essex county, New York; then to Trumbull county, Ohio. John Park fought in the war of 1812. He yet survives at the age of eighty-six years. His wife died in 1854 and he was again married. There were five children in his first family and three in his second. His father was an Englishman. Cephas Park, the second child of the first family, was raised on the farm till nineteen years old. To that time he had attended the common schools. He then attended the high school at Warren, Ohio, about two years. he spent three years as assistant in a postoffice. In 1846 he began reading medicine with Dr. E. Blachley, of Niles, Ohio, but finished reading with Dr. T. B. Wood, of Warren, Ohio. The winter of 1848-9 he attended a course of lectures at Cleveland, Ohio, in the medical department of Western Reserve College, and received a recommendation as a practitioner. He started west, and April 1, 1850, arrived in Oquawka. Not being desirous of practicing to any extent till having completed his course of study, and being limited in means, he opened a small drug store. In the winter of 1853-4 he again attended college at Cleveland, graduating. He returned to Oquawka, disposed of his drug business and gave all his time to practice, which soon became lucrative and successful. In 1852 he was associated with Dr. Snelling and in 1879 with Dr. Postlewait, but neither partnership continued very long. The doctor is a man schooled by his own efforts and is what is known as a "self-made man." he has accumulated a large farm. Dr. Park was married in Ashtabula county, to Minerva Patterson, daughter of Lewis and Lucy Patterson and a native of Ohio. They have one child, Ida. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 995)

Judge John Pence
Judge John Pence, one of the foremost of our pioneers, located about three miles northeast of Oquawka in 1820. Warren County (including the present county of Henderson) was organized in 1830, and Judge Pence was elected one of the first County Commissioners of that county. He acquired his title of "Judge" from having held the office of County Judge in Indiana. He was a man of ability and large sympathies, and was widely known for his benevolences. During the Black Hawk War a fort was erected on Judge Pence's farm, which was intended to be used as a place of refuge and defense in case of Indian attacks. (Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois, Newton Bateman, Paul Selby, Josiah Seymour Currey, James W. Gordon, Charles Josiah Scofield, Brookhaven Press, 1911, page 623)

Hon. James Peterson
Hon. James Peterson, member of the state legislature, was born November 19, 1838, and in New York City. His education was such as good public schools afford. The larger part of his knowledge is of that practical sort acquired by actual experience in business. His youth was mostly spent behind his father's counter. His father dying, James, at the age of fourteen years, in 1852, came to Oquawka and became a clerk in the store of the Moir Brothers, his uncles. After the death of James and William Moir, Mr. Peterson became a partner in the firm of Robert Moir & Co. He was for a number of years cashier of the Moir Bank. In 1875 he retired. His chief business since has been in loaning funds. Mr. Peterson has devoted a part of his life to public business. He was an alderman when Oquawka was under city government. He has taken an active part in educational affairs. In 1882 he was elected to the state legislature. Among his efforts in that honorable body was a bill to compel the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company to pay taxes on their bridge at Burlington. The bill passed the house but was defeated in the senate. Mr. Peterson also directed the apportionment constituting his own senatorial as well as congressional district. Mr. Peterson is a staunch republican. He is also a prominent Mason, having been worshipful master ten terms. He was married in 1874 to Sadie, daughter of Dr. S. H. Ruple, of Oquawka, and a native of Washington, Pennsylvania.  Their children are Genevieve, James and Saide. Mr. Peterson's parents, John P. and Agnes (Moir) Peterson, were both natives of Forres, Scotland, and emigrated in early life to New York City. John P. Peterson had studied medicine ten years in the colleges of Edinburg and Glasgow. he also spent one year as surgeon on a fleet to Greenland. He graduated an M. D. Upon coming to America he was so disgusted in finding that a drug clerk was allowed to practice medicine, or that so little attainment was required by the profession, that he abandoned his profession and embarked in the hardware merchandising in New York City. In about 1843 he located in Berlin, Wisconsin, in business, where he died in 1854, aged little more than fifty years. His wife survived, and came to Oquawka in April, 1852; but when visiting New York she succumbed to death, and was buried in Greenwood Cemetery. In the family were five girls and one boy; Amelia, Agnes, Emma, Elizabeth, Georgiana, and James. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 998-999)

Thomas Phillips, Coroner of Nodaway County
The subject of this sketch is a native of Monroe County, Indiana, where he was born December 22, 1822. He was there reared to manhood, and received his education, following farming as an occupation. In 1852 he removed to Henderson County, Illinois, and there remained 22 years, being an old settler of that county. He then came west and settled in this city, and was engaged in the grocery business for 3 years, when he retired from active business life. In 1878 he was elected to the office of coroner, which position he has since continued to hold. While an incumbent of this office he has held inquests in over 20 cases, besides attending to other duties of that office. His parents, Solomon and Rebecca (Booth) Phillips were old pioneers of Indiana, his father being closely identified with the interests of Monroe County from an early date. His death occurred July 9, 1849. Mr. Thomas Phillips and wife have had three children: Thomas M., Martha J. (deceased), and James D. They are members of the Christian Church.
[Source: The history of Nodaway county, Missouri, containing a history of the county, its cities, towns, etc., biographical sketches of its citizens" 1882, St. Joseph National historical company]

Data Submitted by Researcher Suzanne Miller:
Solomon Phillips, father of Thomas is on 1850 Mortality Schedule of Monroe County, Indiana which states he died of cholera. His widow came to McDonough County, Illinois near Henderson County line to the Old Bedford area. She died December 4, 1868 and has a tombstone in the Old Bedford Cemetery, which is hard to read.

Submitted by Suzanne Miller


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