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 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, 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, 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, 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]
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, 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.
- Thomas Phillips married Sarah Ann Campbell May 9, 1844 in Monroe County, Indiana.
- Thomas Phillips sends word he likes Plymouth Rock, Colorado. [Nodaway Democrat, October 18, 1888]
- Ann Phillips, wife of Thomas died in Colorado a week ago. [Nodaway Democrat, September 25, 1890]
- Sara Ann Phillips June 15, 1825 - September 17, 1890 [Granada, Colorado Hillside Cemetery Listing Prowers County, Colorado]
Submitted by Suzanne Miller
Eleazer Pogue, son of John and Jane (Welch) Pogue, was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, on December 7, 1813. On his mother's side his ancestry was Scotch, while his father was a native of Ireland.
While on the passage over to America he was taken ill and was so near death that a shroud was prepared for him, ready for his death. Mr. Pogue passed his early life in the county of his birth, receiving a good practical education in the common schools. He was greatly blessed in the fact that his were thoroughly christian parents, his father having been an elder in the church of Seceders for many years, while all his mother's folks were Presbyterians in faith and practice. His father died in 1872 and his mother in 1874. The loving hands of his children have erected over his remains a beautiful monument, costing over $600. Mr. Pogue emigrated to Warren county, Illinois, in 1838, and then to Henderson county. He was married to Amelia Paden in may, 1836, in Franklin county, Pennsylvania. Of this marriage seven children were born, two of whom are still living. John W. is now married and resides at Red Oak, Iowa, where he is now engaged in farming; Elizabeth, the younger of the two living children of this marriage, is the wife of John Terrill, a farmer of Keokuk county, Iowa. In January of 1849 Mr. Pogue was bereaved of his wife and in the following May he married Miss Ann McDermit. To them have been born seven boys and three girls. Four of the sons and all of the daughters are now (1882) living. George W. and James B. are now engaged in farming near Red Oak, Iowa; Smiley E. is now farming near Gladstone; Leander W. is at home with is parents; two of his daughters, Jennie S. and Mary A., are engaged in teaching school, the former in Red Oak, Iowa, and the latter in Gladstone, Illinois, the youngest, Emily M., is now at home with her parents. In his family relations Mr. Pogue has been greatly blessed. Though he began life with nothing and has met with some severe misfortunes, yet he has now some 400 acres of land, part lying in township 10, range 5, and part in township 11, range 5. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 1000-1001)
Silas H. Prather
SILAS H. PRATHER, farmer and stock raiser, section 22, was born in Hillsboro, Highland County, Ohio, December 10, 1846. His father, John H. Prather, was a native of West Virginia and was of Scottish descent, while his mother, Catherine (Chaney) Prather, was born in Ohio and of Dutch extraction. They came to Ohio in an early day. Silas is the only child now living of a family of three children. His mother died when he was about two years of age. In 1856 he accompanied his father and step-mother to Montezuma, Poweshiek County, Iowa, where they remained some three years, then returning to Ohio. Young Prather spent his youth on a farm and obtained a fair education. When President Lincoln issued his first call for ninety-day men the subject of this sketch was among the first to respond. He enlisted in the One Hundred and Fifty-eighth Ohio Infantry, Company F, and, after serving his time, he returned to Ohio and from there emigrated to Henderson County, Illinois. In 1864 he again enlisted in the Fifty-eighth Illinois Infantry, Company G, and served until the close of the war. He enlisted as a private and rose to first-duty sergeant, serving mostly on detached service, principally in the quartermaster’s office. He remained some time in Montgomery, Alabama, and at the close of the war he settled in Henderson County, Illinois, and a short time after went to Winterset, Iowa, in the fall of 1866, where he remained three years occupied in farming. In 1869 he went to Texas, was interested for two years in the cattle business, and in the fall of 1870 he moved to Henry County, Missouri. There he lived five years engaged in farming. In 1875 he settled in Warren County, Illinois, and became associated with David Rankin in farming and stock raising. He came to Atchison County in the spring of 1878. He owns a third interest with Mr. Rankin in 7,600 acres of land and they are largely interested in stock raising. Mr. Prather superintends the farm. He is a sterling business man. Commencing life a poor boy, he was early deprived of the care of a mother and was thrown upon his own resources. He has worked his way steadily upward by honesty, industry and attention to business. Politically he is a staunch Republican. Mr. P. was married December 20, 1870, to Miss Emma Rankin, youngest sister of David Rankin. She is a native of Illinois and was born December 17, 1845. She died March 15, 1881, leaving three children: Nettie Bell, born December 10, 1871; Homer Dee, born December 1, 1873, and Harry Rankin, born March 4, 1875. Mr. Prather is a member of the M.E. Church, of Tarkio, in which he holds the position of steward. He is also a strong temperance man. [The History of Holt and Atchison Counties, Missouri; St. Joseph, Mo.: National Historical Company, 1882. Transcribed by K. Mohler]
William C. Rice
William C. Rice was born July 9, 1815, in Greenup county, Kentucky, whither his parents had moved from their native county of Rockingham, Virginia, about the year 1807. On the banks of the Ohio and Big Sandy rivers, his earliest childhood was spent, until the spring of 1820, when (his father having been drowned in the Ohio, in March, 1815) his mother removed with her six children to Christian county, Kentucky, by flat-boat on the Ohio, that being the usual and almost the only mode of traveling at that time. Here in Christian county he spent his youth, working on his mother's farm during the summer months, and in the winter attending one of the traditional log-cabin school-houses, for which kind of educational institution Kentucky and other southwestern states have become famous. Having attended these schools several years he entered the Hopkinsville, Kentucky, Seminary, at that time under the principalship of James D. Rumsey, where he acquired a knowledge of the Latin language and of some of the branches of higher mathematics, trigonometry, surveying, etc. About this time the so-called "Illinois fever" struck Kentucky with its full force, and in company with several others he left his native state for the then new country of Illinois, arriving in Warren county (now Henderson) in the spring of 1835, being at that time nineteen years old. After living here about a year, during which time he revisited Kentucky, he spent two years in southern Iowa, (at that time a part of the territory of Wisconsin, an appointment as district surveyor of Van Buren county in December, 1837. Iowa, at that time, was mostly in the possession of the Indians, there being few settlements of white men except those along the river, at Dubuque, Fort Madison, etc., and at Burlington, then the territorial capital of Wisconsin and known as the "Flint Hills." While thus engaged in surveying he became acquainted with the chiefs Black Hawk, Keokuk, and Wapello, the last two of whom lived near the sites of the towns which now bear their names. In 1838 he returned to Henderson county (then a part of Warren), Illinois, and has lived here ever since. Being elected first county surveyor of Henderson county at its separation from Warren, in April 1841, he discharged the duties of this office until the winter of the same year, when he went to Macomb, Illinois, where for the two following winters, he read law in the office of Cyrus Walker, then one of the prominent lawyers of the Illinois and Iowa bars. Having obtained license to practice law in 1843, he returned to Henderson county, and in August of the same year was elected probate justice, and in November, 1849, county judge. Elected by whigs, or "anti-Nebraska" party, he went, in 1854, as the representative of the fortieth district (Henderson and warren counties) to the legislature, at which Trumbull was elected to the United States senate, over Lincoln and Shields, although Lincoln was really the first choice of the majority of the anti-Nebraska party. Being returned to the legislature in 1858, on the same ticket, he was present at the election of Stephen A. Douglas, over Lincoln, to the senate of the United States. Upon the expiration of this office he returned to Henderson county and resumed the practice of law, and in 1873 was elected county judge, which office he now (1882) holds, being re-elected in 1877. Politically Judge Rice was always a whig until the practical dissolution of this old party, when he became an anti-Nebraska man, and when the necessities of the times gave birth to the republican party, he, in common with most of the old anti-Nebraska men, joined the new political organization, in which he has always remained constant. In May, 1844, he married Mary M., daughter of Cyrus Walker, of Macomb, by whom he had four children, the oldest two of whom died in infancy, and in 1872, his first wife having died in 1871, he married Mrs. Salina Hopkins. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 999-1000)
Judge Richard W. Richey
Judge Richard W. Richey, the first child of Andrew and Polly (West) Richey, was born in Charlton, Saratoga county, New York, November 22, 1802. His father was a native of Cambridge, New York, and his mother of Connecticut. His father dying when he, Richard, was quite young, the lad received but little schooling. However, his spare time at home was well occupied in reading good books. He early worked at tanning and carpentering. When eighteen years old he went to Cambridge, where he engaged in tanning and currying business. In 1823 he married Miss Nellie Green, at Cambridge, and about the year following moved to Lake village, East Greenwich, New York, where he became foreman in a manufacturing establishment. There his wife died. She was the mother of five children. In 1840 Mr. Richey married Agnes Green in Ohio and that same year emigrated to Henderson county (then Warren county), Illinois, and settled at Walnut Grove. He bought eighty acres of land on which he built a log cabin 18x50, three apartments and a story and a half high. It still stands. He added to his farm and also to his dwelling. It was during the Mormon disturbances at Nauvoo that Mr. Richey was summoned by Gov. Ford, of Illinois, to raise a company to assist in preserving peace. He had already raised and partly drilled a company of militia at Olena. But leaving all, he visited the governor at Nauvoo, who requested him to take command of the militia there, as the officer then commanding wished to be relieved. However, this officer concluding to remain at his duty, Mr. Richey, after witnessing the Mormon atrocities, returned home. In 1854 he was elected county judge. He then made his home in Oquawka, that he might better attend to legal duty. With the exception of four years, he held this responsible position till 1875. He was elected squire at his country home and also in Oquawka. He has served on the board of trustees of Oquawka. In 1856 he buried his companion. In 1857 he married Mrs. Cornelia (Day) Moir. Mrs. Richey is a very early resident of Oquawka, having made her home here in 1833, as the wife of Alexis Phelps. Late years Mr. Richey has superintended his farm, but is retired from other business. In politics has been a life long democrat. He has been an elder in the Presbyterian church for many years. His life has been an active one worthy of emulation. His former wives, the Greens, were cousins to the Beveridges, of whom ex-Gov. Beveridge is one. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 994-995)
Herman Schirmer, merchant, Oquawka, was born May 22, 1827, in Saxony, Germany. Early in life he learned the trade of basket maker, and followed the business in the land of his birth till 1854, when he emigrated to America, sailing in the ship H. von Gagern. He located in St. Louis, Missouri, and there followed his trade till 1861 when he nobly responded to the call of his adopted country for soldiers. He enlisted in Co. F, 2d Mo. Inf., and for nearly four years suffered all the horros of border warfare, incident to the western part of the great struggle. After being honorably discharged, he came to Oquawka, where he settled and engaged in the mercantile trade, at the same time carrying on his old business, that of basket making. Mr. Schirmer has been twice married, but has no children. His present wife was Mrs. Fredricka Kom, a daughter of George Altrenther. She is a native of the kingdome of Bavaria, in Germany. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 1004-1005)
Justice Schlotz, Oquawka, was born in the Province of Hesse, Germany, in 1832. In 1852 he was married to Elenore Wiegand, who was also a native of the same province. In 1857 they left the home of their birth and sailed for America. Soon after their arrival they came to this place and permanently located, and here Mr. Schlotz engaged in the wagon and carriage manufacture. He has now ten chidren, whose names in the order of their birth are: Charles (born in Germany, December, 1852, is now in the livery business in Oquawka), Sophia (wife of Fredrick Harbus, now of Peoria, Illinois), Cassie, Mary (wife of Charles Linsenmier, of Burlington), Annie, Christena, Emma, Henry, William and August. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 1002)
Asa Smith, dealer in lumber and staves, has been a resident of Oquawka about thirty-six years, actively engaged in business, or at trade. His parents, Ezra and Lydia (Brooks) Smith, were natives of Connecticut. They moved to Ohio in 1818 and there died. He was a house joiner and miller by trade. Mrs. Smith had been married before, having a family of two children by her first husband. In the second family were three children, of whom Asa Smith is the oldest. He was born January 13, 1812, in Saybrook, Middlesex county, Connecticut. His early life was mostly rustic. When he was six years old his parents moved to Ohio. The youth enjoyed fair educational advantages, which he improved. He early worked with his father at house-joining, also on a farm. He followed the trade at Cleveland awhile, also farmed. Mr. Smith was married January 1, 1840, to Miss Esther Patterson, daughter of Lewis and Lucy Patterson. She was born in Vermont in 1817. After marriage Mr. Smith farmed till 1846, when he came to Oquawka, bringing his wife and one child, Angeline. Mr. Smith engaged in the daguerreotype business, also kept a bookstore in connection with the gallery for a couple of years. In 1857 he engaged exclusively in lumber and stoves, which he continues. He and wife are members of the Presbyterian church. Mr. Smith was born a whig, and with the budding of republicanism he has been true to that party. He has served a number of times as town trustee. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 991)
Thomas C. Smith
Thomas C. Smith, proprietor of the Smith House, Oquawka, was born at Lebanon, Ohio, June 1, 1829. He was principally brought up on a farm, and at the age of twenty years engaged at learning the trade of coach maker. In 1851 he came to Illinois, spent some time in Oquawka and Chicago, and in 1854 made a trip to California, returning home again the same year. December 31, 1857, he married Miss Cordelia F. Richards. She was born in Henderson county, Illinois, September 25, 1838, and is a daughter of Jonas and Eliza (Fouts) Richards, who came from Pennsylvania to this county at an early day, being among the very earliest pioneers. In 1858 Mr. Smith permanently located in Oquawka, and to some considerable extent engaged in the manufacture of carriages and wagons. In 1871 Mr. Smith turned all his attention to the business of running hotel, making it a success. He has two children, Arthur H. and Effie A. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Page 1002)
It is supposed that all the Wadleighs of the United States are descended from three brothers who emigrated from Scotland to America some 240 years ago. Ephraim Wadleigh was born in New Hampshire. His three brothers were in the revolution, and he heard the guns at Lexington. He married Miss Little, also a native of New Hampshire. They became well-to-do. In 1800 they sought a home in Canada East, settling in the dense forest sixty miles from any place where provisions could be had. Their experience was at times bitter, but contentment recompensed. Mr. Wadleigh placed $400 in the hands of the man of whom he bought his tract of land, for the purpose of securing a charter to the land. The money was squandered; the man returned for more money; Mr. Wadleigh prevailed upon him to appoint him to go to Quebec to secure the charter. Leaving his family in the dense forest alone, he started for Quebec on foot through forest and over stream. He was detained for eighteen days in Quebec. Finally, the charter secured, and anxious to return to his family, he left Quebec at two o'clock in the afternoon, walking at an almost incredible speed till late into the night, then sleeping on the floor of a cabin into which he was admitted by two men who declared he had never walked from Quebec that afternoon. But he proved his story by the date of his charter. Early morning found him on his journey. In little more than three days he arrived home, having walked the distance of about 180 miles, through the wildest country sometimes swimming streams with his clothes on his back. He became wealthy and a prominent man, taking part in all progressive measures. He died June 12, 1852, aged eighty-two years, his wife surviving him till the following February. Both are buried in Canada. Luke, son of the above, was the youngest of eight children. He was born August 10,1810, in Hatley, Stanstead county, Canada East. His youth was spent in the school of toil, whose book was nature and whose pencil was an ax. Many a hard day's work was done in erasing the old forest figures from the old blackboard, earth. his father gave him a year and a half of his time and settled him on a farm of 160 acres, in Sherbrook county. It was partly improved. Young Wadleigh went to work clearing, grubbing and tilling. He added land until he owned about 1,150 acres. He furnished great quantities of timbers for railroads. He raised cattle and fine horses, and in every way became successful. He was made school commissioner three years, township counselor three years, then county counselor, serving the public about twelve years. Mr. Wadleigh was married Otober 30, 1830, to Miss Phebe Rowell, a native of Canada. Four children were born to them: Samuel (now of Burlington, Iowa). Mary, (now Mrs. P. H. Chapin, of Kansas), Lydia (now Mrs. Charles Blandin, of Blandinsville), and Jennie. In 1856 Mr. Wadleigh made his home in Oquawka, Illinois, where he engaged in the lumber business. He continued this unsuccessfully for a time. Since that he had superintended his farms near Oquawka. His son Samuel resided in Oquawka some time. He was active in city affairs. Mr. and Mrs. Wadleigh have been many years members of the Methodist church. Their lives have been active ones, such as the world needs. (History of Mercer and Henderson Counties Illinois Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company. Publishers, 1882, Pages 992-993)
James J. Wheatley
The secretary of the Neosho Valley Fruit Growers' Association and one of the large and successful growers of small fruit of Neosho county is he whose name initiates this article. He is a son of Spencer Wheatley, whose history and ancestors are recorded in another place in this volume, and was born in Dorchester county, Maryland, July 6, 1853. The father brought his family to Henderson county, Illinois, in 1860, and resided there till 1869 when he came on west and settled in Neosho county, Kansas. He owned a farm in Big Creek township, and on it, he brought up his large family to be honorable men and women.
James J. Wheatley came to his majority and was limitedly educated in Neosho county. He was eager for the battle of life at twenty-one and at that age his career can be said to have begun. He was married February 20, 1876 to Lydia A. Stanfield, a sister of Samuel Stanfield, whose sketch appears in this work. Mr. Wheatley resided in Big Creek township till 1885 when he came to his present location three miles northeast of Chanute, where he owns the south half of the southeast quarter of section 14, township 27, range 18. This was practically an unimproved tract when Mr. Wheatley purchased it and the seventeen years he has spent on it shows plainly the effect of that many years of labor and attention on a Kansas farm. He abandoned general farming some ten years ago and began the cultivation of small fruit - chiefly the berry - to which business he has excelled and shown his genuine adaptability.
By his marriage with Lydia Stanfield Mr. Wheatley is the father of Viola, wife of Bert Manley, engineer of the Chanute water works; Gertie, Myrtle, Talmage and Bruce. In politics our subject was brought up a Republican, but he became a Populist during the era of political upheaval in Kansas and has served two terms as trustee of his township by election of the adherents of that party. All who know Mr. Wheatley acknowledge in him genuine manhood. He is in a high degree honorable and the substantial elements of character are dominant features of his mental makeup. [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 S. Wheatley
The Wheatleys are among the early settlers of Big Creek township, Neosho county, and several representatives of the family have become prominently identified with its agricultural and horticultural interests, conspicuously among whom is Samuel S., of this personal sketch. He was born in Dorchester county, Maryland, on the 18th of January, 1852, and is a son of Spencer Wheatley, a native of the same state, and Nancy (Twilley) Wheatley, likewise of that state. As far as history records, the Wheatleys have resided in the state of Maryland for many generations, and the most remote ancestor accessible for this article is Isaac Wheatley, the grandfather of this review. Spencer Wheatley was one of a family of six children and in 1860 he came west to Henderson county, Illinois, where he remained eight years, coming to Kansas and settling in Neosho county. He purchased a claim of some settler, built a small house on it and made the place his home till death, February 72, 1872, at the age of forty-four years. His wife survived him till 1894, when she died at the age of sixty-three years. Their family of nine children were, Hester A., wife of M. A. Plover; Samuel S., of this article; James J.; William A.; Elmira, who married Ira Noyes, of Allen county, Kansas; Elizabeth E., wife of Jacob E. Hamblin of Humboldt; Isaac B., of Iola; George W., a prominent lawyer and Republican politician of the 3rd Congressional district of Kansas, and Augusta J.
Samuel S. Wheatley remained on the old homestead till he attained his majority and obtained a common school education. When he began life independently it was as a farmer and this occupation he has followed since with a good degree of success. October 31, 1878, he married Hattie McCannon, a native of the state of Iowa, and a daughter of James McCannon, of Henderson county, Illinois. He is the owner of the old homestead of his father and has improved and beautified it till it is one of the attractive landscapes in the township. Grain, stock, and small fruit constitute products of his farm and of these it yields with much profusion. Mr. and Mrs. Wheatley's children are Earl S., Harry M., Ralph W., Nola, Vaughn M., and Samuel S., Jr. In politics Mr. Wheatley is a republican and he has served his township as both justice of the peace and trustee. He is a Mason, an Odd Fellow and a Modern Woodman. [Source: History of Neosho and Wilson Counties, Kansas, Pub. by L. Wallace Duncan, Fort Scott, Kansas, Monitor Printing Co., 1902; transcribed by Vicki Bryan]
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