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Jasper County Biographies
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Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887)
Submitted by Judy Edwards

JOHN A. BROWN, of Newton, is one of the well-known and representative citizens of Jasper County, and one of its early settlers. His residence dates from 1855, therefore covers a period of a third of a century. During all these years he has borne his part in the upbuilding and advancement of its best interests, and won for himself the warm regard of his fellow-townsmen.
Mr. Brown is a native of the Buckeye State. He was born in Pike County in 1832, and is a son of Thomas and Maria (Badget) Brown. His father was born in Virginia, and in the Old Dominion grew to manhood. On attaining to years of maturity he was joined in marriage with Miss Badget, and they began their domestic life in the South. Some time after their marriage they decided to leave their old home and seek a fortune in the West, so removed to Ohio, locating in Pike County, where the mother died about a year later, at the birth of her son John A. The father was afterwards remarried and with his family went to Jackson County, in the same State, where his second wife died. The year 1855 witnessed his arrival in Illinois. He came to Jasper County, accompanied by the subject of this sketch, and here remained until after the breaking out of the late war. He served for a time in the Union army in the War of the Rebellion, but his service broke down his health and he died in Newton in 1868. Mr. Brown, whose name heads this sketch, and an elder brother, George Brown, were the only children born of the first marriage of the father. George died in Pike County, Ohio, in early childhood. There were two sons and two daughters born of the second marriage, but only one is now living, a daughter, Mrs. Jennie Thompson, who resides in Columbus, Ohio.
It will thus be seen that Mr. Brown is the only male representative of his father's family now living. No event of importance occurred during the days of his childhood and youth. He came with his father to Illinois in 1855, and has since been a resident of Jasper County. He has watched its growth and progress and has seen the many changes which have occurred. He is now engaged in blacksmithing and wagonmaking, and began business on his arrival here on the very spot where his shop still stands. He is a good workman and has succeeded in building up a trade which yields to him a good income.
Mr. Brown was married in Jackson County, Ohio, to Miss Nancy M. Strain, and by the union of this worthy couple has been born a family of three children, numbering a son and two daughters, namely: Emma, wife of C. K. Teets, of Junction City, Ky.; Mrs. Jennie Lathrop, who lives in Robinson, Ill.; and Charles, who is still under the parental roof. Mr. and Mrs. Brown have been bereft by death of six children, all of whom died in early childhood with one exception. The oldest daughter, Florence, was called to the home beyond at the age of twenty-one years. The Brown family is one well known in this community and as its members are people of sterling worth they are held in high regard.
Mr. Brown has been identified with Jasper County and the village of Newton for nearly forty years, and has been a witness of the upbuilding and progress which that long period of time has brought about. By industry and good management in his business career, he has acquired a fine property and is now numbered among the substantial citizens of Newton.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p. 199



WILLIAM L. JOURDAN, who resides on section 8, Wade Township, Jasper County, owns and operates a farm of three hundred and twenty acres of land, and is considered one of the substantial and leading agriculturists of the community. As he is widely and favorably known, we feel assured that this sketch of his life will prove of interest to many of our readers. No other home has he known than Jasper County, for he was born in Wade Township, February 28, 1839. His paternal grandfather, Col. Jourdan, was born of Scotch-Irish parentage. He grew to manhood in the Old Country, and later became one of the early settlers of Indiana. He received his commission as Colonel during his service in the War of 1812.
James Jourdan, his son and the father of our subject, was born and reared near Vincennes, Ind., and there married Melinda Scott, a native of Kentucky, and a daughter of William Scott. Determining to try his fortune in Illinois, he became the first real settler who made a permanent location in Jasper County. His first home was made in what is now Fox Township, at Bow Station. Later he settled near Newton, and resided there for some time. He spent the last years of his life on the old homestead, which is now occupied by his son, Joseph Jourdan, and his death there occurred in 1844, when our subject was a mere lad. The mother then reared her family. She survived her husband until May, 1876, when she was called to her final rest, and her remains were interred by his side in the Vanderhoof Cemetery, where a marble slab marks their last resting-place. In the Jourdan family there were four sons and three daughters, who grew to manhood and womanhood, and four of the number are yet living, namely: Mary A., wife of Horace Root; Kate, wife of Sam Miller; Joseph and William.
The subject of this sketch remained with his mother until after he had attained his majority, and aided her in the labors of the farm. His educational privileges were very moderate, being those afforded by the common schools. On the breaking out of the late war he manifested his loyalty to the Union cause by enlisting on the 5th of October, 1861, as a member of Company K, Thirty-eighth Illinois Infantry. When his term had expired he veteranized, and continued in the service until the spring of 1866. He participated in all the engagements of his regiment, including the battles of Corinth and Stone River, whence he went to Chattanooga, and during all the way the troops were under fire. He then took part in the battles of Chattanooga, Kenesaw Mountain, Chickamauga, Franklin and Nashville. He received a wound at Stone River. After the surrender of Lee, the Thirty -eighth Regiment was sent to Texas, where it did duty until the spring of 1866. With his comrades, Mr. Jourdan was then mustered out at Springfield, and returned to his home.
On again reaching Jasper County our subject resumed farming in Wade Township, where he owned one hundred and sixty acres of land. After operating that place for several years, in 1883 he purchased the farm on which he now resides and which has since been his home. The tract was formerly known as the Big Marsh, for much of it was under water and thought to be unfit for cultivation. Mr. Jourdan has drained and developed it, until it is now one of the valuable farms of the county. He has a comfortable residence, many modern improvements, and is numbered among the thrifty and well-to-do agriculturists of Wade Township.
While home on a furlough during the late war, Mr. Jourdan was married, May 26, 1862, to Miss Mary M. Banta, a native of Johnson County, Ind. She came to Illinois when a maiden of eleven summers, with her father, Henry Banta, who settled in Wade Township. Eight children bless the union of Mr. and Mrs. Jourdan. Alva T. and Charles M. are both married, and operate portions of the home farm. The younger members of the family are Ephraim S., Harvey, Winnie, Elbert, William H. and Ulysses G. They also lost three children, Axie, George T. and Rennie, who died at the ages of thirteen, two and one years respectively.
Mr. Jourdan is an ardent advocate of the Republican party, and has voted for each of its Presidential nominees since casting his first vote for Abraham Lincoln in 1860. He and his wife hold membership with the Presbyterian Church, and socially, he is a member of Newton Lodge, A. O. U. W. Mr. Jourdan is well known in Newton, and in Jasper County. He is a man of strict integrity, true to every duty of citizenship and to every private trust, and among the honored pioneers he well deserves mention.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 213


ALOYIES CHARLES KESSLER, who is engaged in farming on section 9, Wade Township, Jasper County, has spent his entire life in this locality, in fact is a representative of one of the early families of the community. He was born on the farm which is still his home on the 18th of June, 1851, and it has since been his place of residence. His father, Nicholas Kessler, was a native of Germany , and there spent the days of his boyhood and youth. When a young man he determined to try his fortune in America, and crossed the briny deep to the New World. He settled in Jasper County, Ill., entered a tract of land from the Government and began the development of a farm, upon which our subject now resides. He was here married to Miss Kate Weiskope, a native of Germany, who came to America when a young lady. Mr. Kessler first entered a tract of eighty acres from the Government and soon transformed the wild and unbroken prairie into a rich and well-cultivated farm. He met with excellent success in his business, and as his financial resources increased he added to his landed possessions from time to time, until at his death he was the owner of one of the finest farms in the county. He was also one of the largest land-owners in Wade Township, his possessions aggregating some nine hundred acres. He spent the remainder of his life in this locality, and was called to his final home in March, 1874. His wife passed away several years previous, dying when our subject was a lad of about twelve years.
A. C. Kessler is one of a family of eight children, numbering five sons and three daughters, who grew to mature years. He and his brother John and one sister, however, are now the only surviving members of the family. No event of special importance occurred during the boyhood of our subject. He was reared in the usual manner of farmer lads, aiding in the labors of the farm during the summer months, and attending the district schools of the neighborhood during the winter season. On the death of his father he succeeded to the old homestead, which he has since owned and operated.
In Clay County, Ill., on the 19th of September, 1876, Mr. Kessler married Mary Hemrich, who was born in Richland County, Ill., but spent her girlhood days in Clay County. Her parents, Bonaparte and Wilhemina Hemrich, were both natives of Germany. Five children grace the union of Mr. and Mrs. Kessler: Rosa, Henry, Gertie, Celia and Dora. The family circle yet remains unbroken, and the three eldest children are attending school.
Mr. and Mrs. Kessler are members of St. Marie's Catholic Church, and in his political affiliations he is a Democrat. His entire life has been spent in Jasper County, and he is well and favorably known to its citizens. His career has been an honorable and upright one, and therefore he has the high regard of all with whom business or pleasure has brought him in contact. His farm comprises one hundred and sixty acres of land, and is under a high state of cultivation.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p. 213

WILLIE CHITTENDEN MARTIN, the senior member of the well-known mercantile firm of T. J. Martin's Sons, of Newton, was born in this city November 25, 1856, and is the eldest surviving son of T. J. and Mary E. (Chittenden) Martin. His education was obtained in the public schools of his native town, supplemented by a course in the Evansville Business College, of Evansville, Ind. During vacations he made himself useful in his father's store, and so laid the foundation for a practical mercantile education that has served a good purpose since he has been in business for himself. On the death of his father, in 1886, he and his brother E. T. succeeded to the mercantile business established by their father long prior to their births. They have since carried on the store with marked success. They deal in dry goods, groceries and provisions, carry an excellent line of goods and have a fine trade, which yields to them a good income.
On the 27th of November, 1889, Mr. Martin was united in marriage in Newton with Miss Myrtle Spoon, who is a native of Hudsonville, Ill., and is a daughter of Iredell and Elizabeth Spoon. Two children grace this union, both daughters: Eudora and Maud. Mr. and Mrs. Martin are members of the Christian Church, and are people of sterling worth, whose many excellencies of character have won them the warm regard of their largo circle of friends and acquaintances.
In politics, Mr. Martin votes with the Democracy. Socially, he is a member of Newton Lodge No. 161, I. 0. O. F. He is also connected with the Knights of Pythias fraternity, holding membership with Martin Lodge, which was so named in honor of his father some years after his death, although he was never a member of that order. Our subject is likewise connected with Camp No. 479, M. W. A.
In addition to their mercantile business. Mr. Martin and his brother have established a canning factory at Newton, which is fast growing into prominence through the superior quality of the goods which they prepare and sell. Under the name of the Ambraw Canning Company they carry on a successful business, which is elsewhere spoken of in this work.
The sons of eminent and prominent men in the community always labor at some disadvantage by comparison with the father, but the sons of T. J. Martin, having been in business now for several years, have demonstrated their ability to successfully conduct important business enterprises and have already won for themselves a good name, independent of the prestige of their father's memory.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 214

THE AMBRAW CANNING COMPANY, of Newton, one of the successful industries of Jasper County, was organized in the spring of 1889, and has been successful from the start. The second season it doubled its business, the third trebled it, and it is still increasing its facilities. Its proprietors are the Martin brothers, W. C. and E. T., who constitute the well-known mercantile house of T. J. Martin's Sons, of Newton. These gentlemen expect to have two hundred acres planted in tomatoes for the season of 1893, from which to draw their supply of raw material of that product. Besides they will can a considerable quantity of beans and a large amount of apples, peaches and other fruits. The output for the season of 1893 in the matter of tomatoes alone is safely estimated at two hundred thousand cans, and of fruit in proportion to the abundance of the crop. About seventy-five hands will be employed.
Although comparatively new in business, the goods of this company have by their superior excellence already won a wide-spread reputation, which is best attested by the rapidly growing demand for them and the liberal orders sent in, which in the past season were far in excess of the facilities of the company.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 215


REV. FATHER JOHN MOLITOR is the present pastor of St. Thomas' Catholic Church of Newton. The Catholics were among the first to hold religious services at this place. According to the most reliable information that can be obtained, the first services were conducted at the residence of Mortimer O'Kain, by the Rev. Father Fischer, of Ste. Marie. The meetings continued to convene at that place until the coming of the first resident pastor, Rev. Cornelius Hoffmans, who came in October, 1873, and remained until November, 1876. Rev. Mr. Molitor's pastorate dates from January 28, 1877.
The first church building was a frame structure, erected early in the '50s, and which is now used as the society hall of the church. The corner-stone of the present commodious brick structure was laid in the spring of 1880, and the church was dedicated on the 21st of December of the same year. The cost of this building was about $7,000. A parochial school, numbering about seventy pupils, is also sustained. Father Molitor's congregation numbers about ninety families. The church has a library of several hundred well-selected books, which are kept in the society hall. From the above account it will be seen that St. Thomas' is one of the most important and influential religious bodies in this part of the State. There were quite a number of well-known and esteemed early settlers who were prominently identified with the early history of this congregation, among whom should be mentioned S. R. Barker and Charles Hollinger, who have but recently gone to their reward.
Rev. John Molitor has the honor of being a native of this State. He was born in Clinton County in 1845. His father, William Molitor, emigrated to this country from Germany in 1836. Landing in Baltimore, Md., he proceeded to New Orleans, and in 1839, went from there to St. Louis, where he spent about a year. In 1840, he settled in Clinton County, Ill., where he lived until his death, which occurred in 1868. The wife and mother survived her husband for twenty-four years, dying in Breese, Clinton County, Ill., at the home of her daughter, in 1892. Father Molitor is one of a family of six children, numbering five brothers and a sister. The eldest, Frank, is a farmer by occupation; Henry, the second in order of birth, is deceased; the only sister, Jane, is now the wife of Theodore Kluth; Father Molitor is the next in order of birth; Casper, a farmer, occupies the old homestead in Clinton County; and Rev. William Molitor is a Benedictian in Todd County, Minn., where he is pastor of a congregation.
Father Molitor received his literary education in Teutopolis and pursued a theological course in St. Francis, near Milwaukee. He was ordained March 25, 1874, in Alton, Ill., by Bishop Baltes. The first congregation over which he presided as resident pastor was at Olney, Ill., where he remained from the 8th of October, 1874, until he assumed his present duties. The faithful service with which Father Molitor discharges the duties which devolve upon him as the pastor of the church to which he is devoting his life work is shown by the substantial and religious growth that has attended his labors.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 215

WILLIAM B. JOHNSON, who is engaged in merchandising in Wynoose, is a native of the Buckeye State. He was born in Lebanon, Warren County, Ohio, February 26, 1846, and is a son of M. H. Johnson, long a resident of Noble, Richland County. His father was also born in Ohio. He was a cabinet-maker by trade, but later in life followed farming. In the State of his nativity he married Elizabeth Compton, and after her death wedded Mary Leffler, who was born in New Jersey. In Warren County, Ohio, he began farming, but in 1863 removed to Richland County, locating on a farm north of Noble. He engaged in hotel-keeping and merchandising in Noble for a number of years, but in 1892 went to Wayne County, where he is now living at the age of seventy-two years. In politics, he was first a Whig, but since its organization has been a supporter of the Republican party. In religious belief he is a Universalist.
In the Johnson family were nine children, seven of whom are living. Our subject spent his boyhood with his parents, being reared to manhood on a farm and acquiring his education in the public schools. He first came to Illinois in the autumn of 1862, but returned to Ohio, and on the 27th of January, 1863, enlisted in the Fifty-ninth Ohio Infantry. He ran away from home to enter the service, for he was then a lad of only sixteen years. He was assigned to Company A, and went to the battle-ground of Stone River. He joined his regiment at Strawberry Plains and then started on the Atlanta campaign, during which he participated in the battles of Resaca and Rocky Face Ridge. At New Hope Church, near Dallas, May 27, 1864, he was wounded, his left ear being shot off and his head injured. He was then sent to the hospital in New Albany, Ind., and later went home on a furlough.
Subsequently, he returned to his regiment in Tullahoma, Tenn., where the regiment was disbanded except Companies I and K, when Mr. Johnson was transferred to Company I. He took part in the siege of Nashville and the battle of Murfreesboro, and received his discharge at Louisville, July 19, 1865, being mustered out as Sergeant.
Returning to Noble, Mr. Johnson was married November 15, 1865, to Miss Mary B. Newcomer, a native of Ashland County, Ohio. Her parents, Henry and Catherine (Hershey) Newcomer, were originally from Pennsylvania, and came to Illinois in 1865. He then located on a farm near Franconia, and has lived in different parts of the county, but for fourteen years has been a resident of Decker Township. In 1889 he went to Wynoose and bought out a stock of general merchandise, and is now doing business along that line and enjoys a good trade. He has also served as Postmaster of Wynoose, and owns a good farm, which is now occupied by his son. James H., the eldest of the family, is foreman in the postal telegraph business; William F. operates a farm; Mrs. Hattie Garland is living in Greenville, Bond County; and the younger members of the family, Kate, Lillie, Pearl and Bertha, are still at home.
Although he had not then attained his majority, Mr. Johnson cast his first Presidential vote for Lincoln in 1864, and has since been a strong advocate of the Republican party. He manifests considerable interest in political affairs and does all in his power for the growth and upbuilding of his party. He has served as Assessor and Commissioner of Highways, discharging his duties with promptness and fidelity. Socially, he is a member of Wynoose Post No. 704, G. A. R., in which he is serving as Quartermaster, and for several years was connected with the Masonic fraternity of Noble. Mr. Johnson has a wide acquaintance in Richland County and is a highly-respected man. In his business dealings he has been quite successful, and as a result of his well-directed efforts has gained a comfortable competence.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 228

PETER M. JAMISON, who owns and operates a farm of one hundred acres on section 18, Wade Township Jasper County, is a native of Ohio. He was born June 1, 1842, in Butler County, and is of Scotch descent. His father, Peter Jamison, was born in Scotland, in 1809, and when a young man crossed the Atlantic to America. He settled in Butler County, Ohio, in 1827, and there married Lucinda Wray, also of Scotch birth, who died when our subject was a child. Peter Jamison, Sr., was a farmer, and followed that occupation in the Buckeye State for a number of years. In 1856 he removed to Indiana, locating in Montgomery County, where he carried on agricultural pursuits for five years, and then bought a farm of two hundred acres in Monroe County, Ind. There he spent his remaining days, his death occurring in 1883.

Our subject is the second in order of birth in a family of two sons and one daughter. The sister, Elizabeth, is now deceased. The brother, Joseph L., is in business in Indianapolis, Ind. Peter grew to manhood in Montgomery County, Ind. During his boyhood he was inured to the labors of farm life. His school privileges were quite limited, but by experience, reading and observation during his later years he has made himself a well-informed man. He began life for himself by working as a farm hand by the month. In 1862 he was employed by the Government in Nashville, Tenn., breaking teams. He then returned to his home in Montgomery County, Ind., and spent the two succeeding years of his life upon a farm. In January, 1865, he enlisted for the late war, becoming a member of Company B, Seventh Indiana Infantry. He joined the regiment at Chickasaw Bluffs, Ala., and remained in the service until after the close of the war, receiving his discharge at Indianapolis in September, 1865. He was thrown from his horse and in this way sustained permanent injury.

When the country no longer needed his services, Mr. Jamison returned to his home in Montgomery County, and the next year turned his attention to agricultural pursuits, to which he has since devoted his energies. On the 20th of June, 1869, he was united in marriage with Miss Lydia F. Phillips, a native of Tippecanoe County, Ind., and a daughter of Charles Phillips. Three children have been born of their union, Walter, Myrtie and Florence E., all of whom are now attending school.

In the year 1884, Mr. Jamison and his family arrived in Illinois. Having purchased the farm on which he now resides, he removed hither in 1886, and began its further development. As before stated, it comprises one hundred acres of valuable land, and is improved with a good residence, substantial barns, a smokehouse, and all the accessories of a model farm. There is a good orchard, and the fields are under a high state of cultivation. The neat and thrifty appearance of the place well indicates the enterprise and energy of the owner.

Since casting his first Presidential vote, Mr. Jamison has been a supporter of the Democracy, but has never been an office-seeker. Socially he belongs to the Grand Array Post of Newton, and himself and wife are members of the Presbyterian Church. Mr. Jamison is esteemed as an upright citizen, and is a self-made man, who by his own industry and good management has accumulated a good home and a valuable farm, and is to-day numbered among the substantial citizens of Wade
Township.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 237


WILLIAM JOHNSON, who follows farming on section 15, Wade Township, well deserves mention among the early settlers of Jasper County, where he has resided for more than a quarter of a century. During all these years he has been identified with its agricultural interests and now owns and operates a farm of one hundred and twenty acres, pleasantly and conveniently situated three miles from Newton. Mr. Johnson claims Indiana as the State of his nativity. He was born in Wayne County, April 5, 1834, and is the second in a family of four sons and seven daughters, whose parents were Samuel and Catherine (Ladd) Johnson. His father was a native of North Carolina, and when a lad of five years was brought by his father, William Johnson, to Indiana. The Johnson family is of Scotch-Irish descent and was founded in North Carolina at a very early day. William Johnson, Sr., located in Wayne, Ind., and there reared his family. After attaining to mature years, Samuel Johnson married Miss Ladd, a native of Wayne County, and a daughter of Joseph Ladd, who was born in North Carolina, and was one of the heroes of the evolution. The father of our subject was a farmer by occupation and followed that business in Wayne County throughout his entire life. He died in 1869, and his wife, who survived him a number of years, passed away in August, 1891, at the advanced age of eighty years. Both were buried in Mt. Zion Cemetery, in Williamsburg, where a monument marks their last resting-place. Mr. Johnson was a man of prominence in his community. He served as Justice of the Peace and was also Postmaster for a number of years. He held membership with the United Brethren Church and served as one of its officers. Of his family, five daughters and our subject are yet living.

William Johnson grew to manhood in the county of his birth, spending his boyhood days under the parental roof. His educational privileges were quite good for that day. Prompted by patriotic impulses he responded to the country's call for troops, and in August, 1862, became a member of the Sixty-ninth Indiana Infantry. He enlisted as a private of Company E, but was promoted to the rank of Sergeant. He participated in the battles of Richmond (Ky.), Chickasaw Bayou and Arkansas Post. On the 30th of August, 1862, he was taken prisoner at Richmond, Ky., and held in camp by rebel guards for a few days. He was then paroled, and two and a-half months later was exchanged. In April, 1863, he was discharged on account of physical disability.

On receiving his discharge, Mr. Johnson returned to his home in Indiana, and when he had recovered his health engaged in farming. In the fall of 1867, he came to Illinois and purchased and located upon the farm which has since been his home. It was then only partially improved, but he soon placed the entire amount under a high state of cultivation, erected a neat and substantial residence and built good barns and all other necessary outbuildings. He has a good bearing orchard, and in fact, the Johnson homestead is considered one of the finest and most highly improved farms of this locality.

On the 27th of January, 1859, in Wayne County, Ind., Mr. Johnson was united in marriage with Mary Jane Beverlin, a native of that county, and a daughter of Thomas Beverlin. They have four children yet living: Edgar, who is married and resides upon a farm in Wade Township; Leander, who is also married and follows farming in this township; Oscar, who aids his father in the operation of the old home; and Lizzie, who completes the family. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson also lost their first-born, a son, who died in childhood.

Our subject is a well-known citizen of Jasper County. For a quarter of a century he has been identified with its growth and upbuilding, and has aided materially in its development and progress. He is a public-spirited and progressive citizen and manifests a commendable interest in all that pertains to the welfare of the community. The cause of education has ever found in him a warm friend, and he has faithfully served as a member of the School Board for about twenty years. He has been officially connected with the County Fair Association since its organization and for four years was its president. In politics, he is a Republican, having been a stalwart supporter of that party since its formation. He voted for its first Presidential candidate, John C. Fremont, and has supported each Presidential nominee since that time. Socially, he is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Knights of Honor, and the Grand Army Post. In all the relations of life, Mr. Johnson has been honorable and upright, and his many excellencies of character have won him a well-merited esteem.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 238


WILLIAM L. WAKEFIELD, who is one of the representative farmers of Jasper County, now resides on section 26, Smallwood Township, and the record of his life work is as follows: He was born on the 9th of August, 1846, in Clay County, Ind., and on the paternal side is of German and Irish extraction. His father, Charles McCoy Wakefield, was born in the Hoosier State in 1823, and was reared to manhood upon a farm, but after attaining his majority, he engaged in merchandising in Bowling Green, Clay County. In an early day, however, he came West, locating in what is now known as the village of Wakefield, Richland County, Ill. Purchasing a stock of dry goods, he established the first store in that place. This was in 1856. There he remained for four years, when, in 1860, he came to Jasper County, and purchased land in Smallwood Township, where he carried on farming until his death. He served as Deputy Provost Marshal for this district for about three years. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Catherine Hickson, is a native of Ohio, and is yet living on the old homestead in this county. Her parents were both born in Germany. Mr. Wakefield died December 5, 1888.

In the family of this worthy couple were five children, four sons and a daughter, of whom William is the second in order of birth. At the age of ten years, he came to Illinois with his parents, and since 1860 has been a permanent resident of Jasper County. In the common schools, he acquired a good English education and in his parents' home he became familiar with farming in all its details, for from an early age he aided in the cultivation of his father's land. When the war broke out he joined the brave boys in blue, enlisting November 20, 161, as a member of Company F, Forty-sixth Illinois Infantry. He served until December 22, 1863, when he was enrolled as a veteran to serve for three years, or until the close of the war. On the 20th of January, 1866, after a long and faithful service, he was honorably discharged. During the siege of Vicksburg, he was taken prisoner while on picket duty, but after two days and three nights of imprisonment he succeeded in making his escape. Mr. Wakefield was only fifteen years of age when he entered the service a mere boy but he took part in all the engagements of his company, and his loyalty and bravery equaled that of the men of mature years.

When mustered out, our subject returned to his home in Jasper County, and once more devoted his time to agricultural pursuits. On the 15th of March, 1873 he was united in marriage with Miss Clara Manning, who was born September 21, 1856, in Wayne County, Ind., and is a daughter of James and Mary Jane (Hughes) Manning, the former a native of Indiana, and the latter of Pennsylvania. Her parents are now residents of Jasper County. Seven children grace the union of our subject and his wife, namely: Frank, born June 24, 1873; Carrie, March 17, 1878; Ticha, November 7, 1880; Bertha, June 19, 1883; Foster, March 10, 1885; Ollie, May 7, 1888; and Willie, May 18, 1890.

Throughout his entire life, Mr. Wakefield has engaged in farming, and in his business interests he has met with fair success. He now owns an excellent farm of one hundred and sixty acres of rich land, all under a high state of cultivation and well improved, and his possessions are as a monument to his thrift and enterprise. He exercises his right of franchise in support of the Republican party and has served as School Director for a number of years. Socially, he is a member of Jacob E. Reed Post No. 50, G. A. R., of Newton. Himself and wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church and are worthy people, who hold an enviable position in social circles and are favorably known.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 239


WILLIAM H. EIDSON, M. D., a retired physician, who for many years was prominent in the medical fraternity of Jasper County, makes his home in Willow Hill. As he is both widely and favorably known, a record of his life will prove of interest to many of our readers. A native of Ohio, he was born in Preble County, September 17, 1816. His parents were Henry and Nancy (Bunch) Eidson. The family is of English descent, and was founded in America by the grandfather of our subject, who was born in England. He came of a wealthy family, and being the eldest child inherited quite a large estate, but owing to political strife, he desired to seek a home elsewhere, and when a young man crossed the Atlantic. He located in Virginia, where he died at an advanced age. The father of our subject was born in Bedford County, Va., March 14, 1777, and in 1812 emigrated from his native State to Ohio, where he spent the remainder of his life. He was called to his final rest March 1, 1847. He had served in the War of 1812, and was a highly respected citizen. His wife, who was born in Augusta County, Va., died in October, 1853. She was of Scotch extraction, both of her parents being natives of Scotland, whence they emigrated to the United States.

Our subject is the only surviving child of a family numbering four sons and two daughters. In order of birth he was the youngest. He spent his early life upon the farm in Ohio with his parents, remaining at home until he attained his majority. The educational privileges afforded him were those of the common schools. On reaching man's estate, he determined to enter the medical profession, and to this end began studying under the direction of Dr. William A. Limawver, who was one of the first graduates of Jefferson Medical College. After four years thus spent in study, Mr. Kidson went to Mexico, Ind., and entered upon the practice of his chosen profession. He there remained for about two years, when he returned home on account of the illness of his father, who died soon afterward.

The Doctor then remained in Ohio for a few months, engaged in the practice of medicine. Subsequently we find him in Clark County, Ill., where he practiced medicine for about a year, after which he came to Jasper County, locating in Willow Hill. This was in 1854. Here he opened an office and was successfully engaged in practice until 1880, when he retired to private life, turning his business over to his son.

On the 16th of June, 1844, Dr. Eidson married Miss Catherine Coffman, who was born near Hagerstown, Md., March 14, 1817. Her parents were both natives of Germany. After having traveled life's journey together for almost forty years, this worthy couple were separated by the death of the wife in 1883. They had a family of three sons and four daughters, but four died in childhood. Henry A., the eldest, and the only son now living, was born November 9, 1846, in Mexico, Ind., and was about eight years of age when his parents came to Jasper County. He attended the public schools until twenty years of age, after which he engaged in teaching for two terms in the Willow Hill schools. He served as Deputy County Clerk, and was Deputy Circuit Clerk for three years. In 1878, he entered Rush Medical College, of Chicago, from which he was graduated on the 24th of February, 1880. The following day he was married, but his wife died a year later. He then came to Willow Hill and entered upon the practice of his profession, which he has since continued. He was again married, on the 10th of November, 1882, the lady of his choice being Mary J. McCartney, of Neoga, Ill., by whom he has four children: Fannie A., William M., Harry A. and Laura A. Henry is now one of the leading physicians of the county, and holds a high rank among his professional brethren.

The other members of the Eidson family are Catherine E. and Laura J. The latter is now Postmistress of Willow Hill. Dr. Eidson, whose name heads this sketch, manifested his loyalty to the Government during the late war by enlisting as a member of Company K, Thirty-second Illinois Infantry, but he was only in the service a few months, when he was obliged to return home on account of ill health. In politics he is a stanch Republican, warmly advocating the principles of that party. He served as County Commissioner for four years, was Justice of the Peace for a number of years, was Police Magistrate for ten years, and has been Postmaster of Willow Hill for almost thirty years, being first appointed to the position in 1854. He holds membership with the Methodist Church, and belongs to Cooper Lodge No. 489, A. F. & A. M., of Willow Hill, of which he was Master for a number of years, while his son Henry has held that position for fifteen years. The Doctor has been one of the most prominent and influential citizens of this community. Few men are more widely known in this region, and none are more universally esteemed. A long and well-spent life has won him high regard, and it is with pleasure that we present to our readers this record of his career.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 241

JOHN S. RIDLEN is the owner of a beautiful country home, situated in the midst of a valuable farm of three hundred acres on section 6, Willow Hill Township, Jasper County, about one mile south of the village of Willow Hill. A native of the Buckeye State, he was born in Clermont County on the 8th of March, 1820, and is of Scotch descent on the paternal side, and of French extraction on the maternal side. His parents were Stephen and Ann (Belleville) Ridlen. The father was born in Maine September 15, 1788, was a farmer by occupation, and had served in the War of 1812. In an early day he emigrated to the Buckeye State, where he made his home until 1852. That year witnessed his arrival in Jasper County, where he purchased land, the farm upon which our subject now resides. The remainder of his life he spent in this county. His death occurred in January, 1864, and to his family he left quite a large estate, which had been acquired through his own industrious efforts. His wife, who was born in Pennsylvania December 12, 1791, also spent her last days in Jasper County.

We now take up the personal history of our subject, who in the usual manner of farmer lads was reared to manhood. He spent most of the time with his parents until twenty-nine years of age, when he left the parental roof to make a home for himself. He wedded Miss Mary Bennett, who was born December 18, 1828, in Ohio. Her death occurred on the 6th of December, 1882. She left a family of seven children, as follows: Martha Ellen (deceased), who was the wife of John Parr, a prosperous farmer of Jasper County; Margaret Ann, widow of James Hartley; Eliza Jane, wife of James R. Manning, who is engaged in agricultural pursuits in Jasper County; Lydia C., who married Frank P. Hurt, a farmer of the same county; Sarah F., wife of William H. Lovrig, of Jasper County; William P. , who follows farming in this community; and Mary C., wife of Harrison Conrad, also a farmer of Jasper County. On the 7th of November, 1887, Mr. Ridlen was again married, his second union being with Miss Lucy J. Gardner, a native of Illinois.

They are well-known people of this community and rank high in social circles. Mr. Ridlen has spent his entire life in agricultural pursuits. When a young man, he purchased a farm in Hancock County, Ind., and operated it until 1865. In that year he sold out, and choosing Illinois as the scene of his future labors, came to Jasper County. Soon after his arrival he bought the farm on which he now resides. It is complete in all of its appointments, supplied with all modern improvements and conveniences, and is considered one of the best farms of the locality. In his political views, Mr. Ridlen is a Democrat. He has served as School Director and has been Roadmaster for a number of years. With the Baptist Church he holds membership. In the community in which he makes his home he is recognized as an upright and honorable man and public-spirited and progressive citizen.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 246

HALE JOHNSON, of the well-known law firm of Gibson & Johnson, of Newton, Jasper County, is a native of Indiana. He was born in Sugar Grove Township, Tippecanoe County, August 21, 1847. His parents were Dr. John B. and Sarah A. (Davison) Johnson, both of whom are now deceased. The father was born in Highland County, Ohio, February 17, 1818. He adopted the medical profession as a vocation, and after a thorough course of study in each was graduated from the allopathic and eclectic medical colleges. During the late war he served as Surgeon of the Seventy-second Indiana Regiment. In early life he removed to Indiana, where he married Miss Sarah A. Davison, who died in that State March 26, 1853, leaving three children: Hale, the subject of this sketch; Litta H., who became the wife of Dr. Didlake, a resident physician of Monticello, Ind.; and Preston K., now deceased. Dr. Johnson was again married, in 1854, his second union being with Miss Rebecca Aydelot, of Linden, Ind. In 1865 the Doctor removed from the Hoosier State to Illinois and located in Marion County, where he pursued the practice of his profession for a time. He subsequently removed to White County, Ark., but after the death of his second wife he returned to this State and spent his declining years among his children. After a long and useful professional life his death occurred on the 14th of October, 1892, in the seventy-fifth year of his age.

Hale Johnson, of this sketch, spent his early life upon a farm, receiving his education in the county district schools and in the Academy at Ladoga, Ind. In May, 1864, he relinquished his academic course to enter the military service of the United States, in the war for the preservation of the Union. He enlisted in the one hundred day service as a private in Company D, One Hundred and Thirty-fifth Indiana Infantry, and with his command did duty in Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama, defending bridges, posts and supplies for six months. He received his discharge in December,
1864.

On his return from the army Mr. Johnson continued in Indiana until November, 1865, when he accompanied his father and the family to Illinois, making his home in Marion County of this State. He was there engaged in farming and school teaching until 1872, when he entered upon the study of law under the preceptorship of W. R. Hubbard, Esq., of Kinmundy, Marion County, Ill. After a thorough course of study he passed an examination before the Supreme Court at Mt. Vernon, at the June term of 1875, and was admitted to the Bar. Soon afterward he entered upon the practice of his chosen profession in Altamont, Effingham County, where he sought to build up a practice. He also engaged in teaching school for a part of the time in order to avoid a deficit in the exchequer. After spending two years in practice in Altamont he was attracted to Newton, Jasper County, by the reports of the thrifty growth of that county seat, and in June, 1877, changed his place of residence to that commonwealth, where he has since been successfully engaged in the prosecution of his profession. Soon after coining to Newton, Mr. Johnson became associated in practice with J. M. Honey, which connection continued until near the close of 1881. On the 1st of January, 1882, our subject formed the existing law partnership with James W. Gibson. He has also been associated with G. H. Shup in the real-estate business.

On the 19th of February, 1871, Mr. Johnson was married, in Alma, Marion County, Ill., to Miss Mary E. Loofbourrow. The lady was born in Fayette County, Ohio, and is a daughter of Orlando and Frances L. (Delany) Loofbourrow. Her ^ parents were also natives of the Buckeye State, and her paternal grandfather, Judge Loofbourrow, is numbered among the pioneer settlers of Ohio. Seven children were born of the union of Mr. and Mrs. Johnson, of whom five are yet living, two having died in infancy. The living are Jessie B., who is a graduate of Kirkwood Musical College, and for one year was instructor in music in Westfield College of Illinois. She is now teaching privately at her leisure. William F., the only son, was for three years a student in Eureka College, and is now studying law in his father's office. The younger members of the family are, Mabel, Fannie M. and Lotta L., who are still at home. The parents and their three elder children are members of the Christian Church, and the family is one of prominence in this community.

On attaining his majority, Mr. Johnson joined the Republican party, with which he affiliated until 1882, since which time he has been a supporter of the Prohibition principles. In 1876 he was a candidate on the Republican ticket in Effingham County for States Attorney, and notwithstanding the overwhelming Democratic majority in that county he came within thirteen votes of being elected. He received the compliment of being nominated by the Prohibition party for Attorney General of Illinois, and for Congress, but, under existing circumstances, did not win his election. Mr. Johnson was once a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Ancient Order of United Workmen, but at present is nonaffiliated with these fraternities. He is a member in good standing of Newton Camp No. 479, M. W. A.

The firm of Gibson & Johnson, in addition to their extensive law practice, carry on the real-estate, loan and collection business, in which they enjoy a most excellent reputation for fair dealing, promptness and reliability. This firm stands at the head of the legal fraternity of Jasper County, and takes rank among the leading law firms of southern Illinois. Mr. Johnson has devoted much valuable time and means to aid the cause of temperance, and is widely known as an earnest and influential supporter of temperance principles. He is also an active and prominent worker in the cause of religion, and has been a liberal contributor to the support of churches and religious work. He is an influential member of the Christian Church, and has devoted much time to the organization and management of Sunday-schools and to church business. He has been Superintendent of the Sunday-school and an official member of the Newton Christian Church for many years. His life is an honorable and upright one, and he has the high regard of all with whom he has been brought in contact.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 247


JOSEPH CUMMINS was a well-known and honored pioneer of Jasper County, who took up his residence here in the year 1840, when the county was in its primitive condition, being but sparsely settled. Our subject was a native of Indiana, his birth occurring in the Hoosier State in 1825. When only a small boy he left the State of his nativity and came with his parents to Illinois. The family located in Jasper County, where he grew to manhood, his childhood being passed in the usual manner of farmer lads. On attaining his majority, Mr. Cummins was married. He chose as a companion and helpmate on life's journey Miss Mary E. Chapman, their union being celebrated in January, 1853. The lady was born in Virginia on the 8th of May, 1834, and is a daughter of Samuel and Nancy (Dawson) Chapman, who were numbered among the early settlers of Jasper County, they having located here when Mrs. Cummins was only about four years of age. Ten children were born of the union of our subject and his wife, two sons and eight daughters, of whom two died in infancy. Nancy, the eldest, is a successful teacher in the Newton public schools; Emma became the wife of George Van Treese, a representative farmer of Jasper County; Lydia is the wife of Frank Richardson, who is engaged in clerking in a store in Newton; Lillie is the wife of George Switzer, a contractor and builder, now residing in Michigan City, Ind.; Alice is the wife of Wilbur Forbes, a practicing physician of New Orleans, La.; Frank is the owner of a meat market in Newton; Josephine is still at home, and Cameron completes the family. The children all received good educational privileges and were thus fitted for the practical and responsible duties of life.

Mr. Cummins held membership with the Christian Church and was a faithful and consistent member, whose life was in harmony with his professions. He was called to the home prepared for the righteous August 13, 1883, and his death was sincerely mourned by a large circle of friends and acquaintances, who held him in high esteem. Mr. Cummins was elected Sheriff of Jasper County in 1873 and served four years. He was a Democrat in politics and took an active interest in public affairs. To his energetic disposition and business ability may be attributed his success in life. He was upright and honorable in all his dealings, and by his well-directed efforts he accumulated a comfortable competency, owning at his death a large tract of land in this county. His widow still resides on the home farm, which is situated on section 23, Smallwood Township. She is a most estimable lady and the Cummins family is one of prominence in the community.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 255



REV. JOHN R. SKINNER, pastor of the Presbyterian Church of Newton, was born in Perry County, Ohio, in 1845, and is descended from one of the early families of the Buckeye State. The great-grandfather of our subject was a native of England, who, leaving that country, emigrated to America during Colonial days. The old homestead farm in Ohio has been in the possession of the family for more than a century, and is now owned and occupied (by the only paternal uncle of our subject. The latter's father was William Skinner, and his grandfather bore the name of Robert Skinner. The former died when his son was but four years of age, after which Mrs. Skinner, the mother of our subject, married John McFillen. She is still living and makes her home in De Kalb County, Ind.

The Skinner family numbered nine children, seven sons and two daughters, of whom six sons and a daughter are yet living. Stephen is a resident of Chicago; Robert resides in Kansas; George makes his home near the old farm in Ohio; William is now located in Wood County, Ohio; John R. is the next younger; Marion resides in Marshall County, Iowa; and the only sister, Amaretta, is the wife of Salathial Skinner, of Portland, Jay County, Ind.

The Rev. Mr. Skinner whose name heads this record spent the days of his boyhood and youth upon his father's farm in his native county. During his minority his opportunities for securing even the rudiments of an education were very limited. He early conceived the idea of engaging in ministerial work, and at the age of twenty-one years he entered Heidelburg University, at Tiffin, Ohio, where he pursued a select course of study. When he had fitted himself for his chosen profession he entered upon the work of the ministry in 1873, his first charge being in Winamac, Ind., where he remained for three years. Thence he went to Pulaski, Williamson County, Ohio, where he also continued three years. At this time the death of his father-in-law called him to Pulaski, Ind., and eighteen months later he accepted a call to Fairfield County, Ohio, where he remained for three years. Thence he went to Kalamazoo, Mich., being pastor of the church at that place for about six years. The continued ill-health of his wife induced him to try a more radical change of climate, and he accordingly removed to Kansas, but he spent only seven months in that State, after which he went to Iowa. Nine months later he became a resident of Vernon, Tex., soon after which, his wife's health being restored, he accepted a call to his present pastorate.

Mr. Skinner was married in Pulaski, Ind., to Miss Mary A. Good, a daughter of Ephraim Good. Her maiden name is an index to her character, and to her husband she has proved a true helpmate. Two sons have blessed their union, Elgie and De. The church of which Mr. Skinner is now pastor was one of the earliest religious organizations in Jasper County, its history covering a period of over forty years. In 1852 the Rev. Robert Simpson removed to Jasper County from a point near Vincennes, Ind., and settled on a farm about three miles southeast of Newton. With the few Presbyterians here at that time an organization was effected and services were held in the Court House. The original members besides the pastor were but three in number, viz.: Addison S. Harris and his wife, Henrietta Harris, and Miss Elizabeth P. Harris. The following, however, were admitted to membership at the time of organization: Joseph Wilson and his wife, Anna; Robert Dcltell and his wife, Dorcas; Mrs. Martha Maxwell and Mrs. Elizabeth Maxwell.

The Rev. Mr. Simpson continued 10 preach for the church until near the time of his death, which occurred in 1860. He was succeeded by the Rev. T. Morgan, who also came from Indiana, and who resided during his pastorate, which continued only about a year, in Newton. Then came the Rev. K. P. Fox, who was also from the Hoosier State, whither he returned at the close of his service, to be succeeded by the Rev. I. Venable, under whose administration the present church building was erected, the dedicatory services taking place on the 19th of July, 1868. The Rev. Mr. Venable was followed by the Rev. Thomas W. Chestnut, and the latter by the Rev. James Brownlee.

In 1877 the Rev. G. W. Nichols assumed the pastoral charge of the church, and was followed by the Rev. A. H. Parks. His home was at Neoga, and he did not become resident pastor, but preached to the congregation at Newton each alternate Sunday for a considerable time. In 1884 the Rev. G. E. Sanderson became resident pastor, and remained for two years. The church then had only occasional preaching until the coming of its present minister. The Rev. Mr. Skinner by his faithful work and Christian example is doing much toward promoting the religious growth, not only of his own church, but of the community wherever his influence is felt. The society has grown from the three original members mentioned above to a membership of about one hundred, and is in a healthful and prosperous condition.

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MILTON SIMS, one of the early settlers of Jasper County, now resides on section 25, Willow Hill Township, where he is engaged in general farming. His farm is pleasantly located about two miles northwest of the village of Willow Hill. His home is a pleasant country residence, which is supplemented by good barns and other outbuildings, and these in turn are surrounded by broad fields of waving grain. He owns three hundred acres of rich land, the greater part of which is under a high state of cultivation and yields to him a golden tribute in return for the care and labor he has bestowed upon it.

The life record of Mr. Sims is as follows: He was born November 22, 1823, near Frankfort, Ky., and is the third in a family of five sons and two daughters born unto Thomas and Lucinda (Hudson) Sims. The father was a native of Virginia and spent his early life in that State, but when u young man he went to Kentucky with his parents, where he was married and lived until 1842. He served about a year in the War of 1812. In 1842 he emigrated to Rush County, Ind., where he resided until his death in 1880, at the age of eighty-seven years. His wife died in Indiana at the ripe old age of eighty.

Milton Sims spent his early life on the farm with his parents in Kentucky, and accompanied them on their removal to Indiana, remaining at home until twenty-four years of age. At that time he was united in marriage with Miss Priscilla Harlen, of Rush County, Ind., their union being celebrated February 22, 1849. The young couple soon after war emigrated to Jasper County, and Mr. Sims entered the tract of land from the Government which has now been his home for forty-four years. He is numbered among the pioneer settlers, for the county was then in its primitive condition, the work of civilization and upbuilding having been scarcely begun. Wild game of all kinds was plentiful, including deer. The family had to endure may of the hardships and experiences of frontier life.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Sims were born three children: Martha Ann, wife of James W. Johnson, a prosperous farmer residing near Decatur, Ill.; William and Marion T., who are successfully engaged in farming in this county. The mother of this family died April 29, 1859, and on the 26th of March, 1860, Mr. Sims married Miss Sarah E. Mitchell, of Jasper County. They became the parents of six children, five j-et living, viz.: Richard, a well-to-do agriculturist of Jasper County; Ida M., wife of Wilson Way, a farmer of this Bounty; Georgia, wife of William Raef, a telegraph operator of Texas; Nora, wife of David Holt, a farmer of this county; and Lulu, at home. Mr. Sims was called upon to mourn the loss of his second wife, who died August 23, 1883. On the 10th of September, 1886, he was united in marriage with Miss Mary, daughter of James Ireland, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work. Their union has been blessed, with two children, Laura and Elizabeth.

In his political views, Mr. Sims is a stanch Democrat. He has served as a member of the County Board of Supervisors for three terms, was Township Commissioner for twelve years and has long been one of the School Directors. He always discharges his official duties with promptness and fidelity, and has thus won the commendation of all concerned. He holds membership with the Baptist Church and has led an honorable, upright life, which has gained him the confidence and esteem of a large circle of friends and acquaintances. His long residence in the county makes him well worthy of an honored place among its pioneer settlers.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 259


CAPT. C. D. KENDALL, of Newton, is one of the prominent and influential citizens of Jasper County. A native of Erie County, Pa., he was born in 1837, and is of New England ancestry. His parents were Cyrus and Lucy (Aubrey) Kendall. Both were natives of Orange County, Vt., but with their respective families they went to the Keystone State. The father was of English descent, and the mother, as her name indicates, was of French lineage. Cyrus Kendall died in Pennsylvania in 1844, and his wife, who survived him for a number of years, passed away in Fayette County in 1861. They had a family of six children who grew to mature years, but our subject and a younger brother are now the only living representatives of the family. The latter, Dr. John M. Kendall, is a resident of Shelby County, Ill.

In 1853, when about seventeen years of age, Capt. Kendall, accompanied by his mother, came to Illinois and taught school for a number of terms in Fayette and Clay Counties. He continued to make his home in the former county until the spring of 1860, when he went to Louisville, Clay County, and entered the law office of W. W. Bishop. There he pursued the study of law, intending to enter the legal profession, and took an examination for admittance to the Bar, which he successfully passed, but before his diploma was received he had resolved to enter the military service of his country, the War of the Rebellion having already begun. The date of his enlistment was May 2, 1861. He was among the first to enlist, yet it was found that the quota of Illinois, under the call of President Lincoln, was full, and accordingly he with others was accredited to Missouri, and became a member of Company D, Eleventh Regiment of Missouri Volunteers. Mr. Kendall as soon made Quartermaster-Sergeant of the regiment on the non-commissioned staff, and immediately after the siege of Corinth was commissioned Second Lieutenant of Company K. When the regiment veteranized he was made Captain, and served as such until about three months before the close of the War, when he became Quartermaster of the Second Brigade, First Division of the Sixteenth Army Corps under the command of Gen. L. F. Hubhard, of Minnesota, who was afterwards Governor of that State. Capt. Kendall was actively engaged in many of the most important events of the war. He participated in the battle of Island No. 10, the siege and battle of Corinth, the siege and capture of Vicksburg, the battles of Iuka, Corinth and
Nashville, and the siege and capture of Spanish Fort and Ft. Blakely. He was wounded at the battle of Corinth on October 3, 1862, and at Nashville, December 16, 1864.

Returning home after receiving his discharge, Capt. Kendall was elected Clerk of Clay County in the fall of 1865, and served efficiently in that capacity for four years. In the autumn of 1869 he embarked in merchandising in Louisville, Clay County. Again, in January, 1874, he was called to official duty, being elected Assistant Secretary of the Senate of the Twenty-eighth General Assembly.

Capt. Kendall was first married on the 22d of January, 1862, Miss Rovilla C. Miller, a daughter of Thomas and Abbie (Sparks) Miller, becoming his wife. She was a native of Ohio, and died in 1875. leaving one son, who still survives her, Harry F., a graduate of the State University of Illinois, and a lawyer by profession, now residing in Champaign, Ill. In 1878, Capt. Kendall was again married. He married Mrs. Susie Barnes, widow of Charles W. Barnes, and a daughter of Henry and Susan (McCoy) Brooks. They have one child, May E.

In 1881, Capt. Kendall disposed of his business interests in Louisville and removed to Newton. He has since engaged in merchandising in this place, and is recognized as one of the prominent and leading business men of Jasper County. He carries a full and complete line of goods, and as he earnestly desires to please his customers, and is upright and honorable in all his dealings with the public, he has gained a liberal patronage and won the confidence and good-will of all with whom he has teen brought in contact. Mr. Kendall was one of the organizers of Jacob E. Reed Post, G. A. R., and is Post Commander of the same. In his political affiliations he is a Republican, and earnestly advocates the principles and measures of that party, having teen one of its warm supporters since he cast his first Presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln. Capt. Kendall has been a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church for twenty-five years, and has been an active worker in its interests. In his country's hour of need he was a gallant and faithful soldier, and honorably wore the blue of the Union. In times of peace he is both a successful business man and an enterprising citizen.

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OSIAH PALMER, one of the leading business men of Granville Township, Jasper County, residing on section 28, is the proprietor of a large sawmill. This is one of the most important industries of the community. The owner is a native of Ohio, having been born near Canton, Stark County, June 17, 1837, and is a son of Jonathan and Rebecca Palmer. His father was born in Maryland and was of English descent. His death occurred in 1856, and his wife who survived him a number of years, passed away in 1880. Of their six children, the eldest died in infancy; Osiah is the second in order of birth; John A. resides in Plymouth, Ind.; Catherine is the wife of Peter Braucher, of Havana, N. Dak.; Samuel is a planter of Madison, Ala.; and Jonathan died in 1891.

Mr. Palmer, whose name heads this record, received such educational advantages as the district schools afforded, and upon his father's farm was reared to manhood. He remained with his parents until 1859, when with an ox-team he went to Pike's Peak. On the 12th of March, he left Ft. Leavenworth, Kan., and on the 24th of May reached the present site of Denver, but the city then consisted of only a few tents and probably one or two sod houses. Mr. Palmer saw Horace Greeley while there. He began prospecting and remained in that locality for about a year, when he and two companions bought lumber at the cost of $15 per hundred feet, built a boat and sailed down the Platte River to Plattsmouth, Neb., a distance of one thousand miles, reaching the end of their journey ten days after leaving Denver.

Later Mr. Palmer worked his way back to Ohio, where he engaged in farming and in cutting cord wood for thirty-one cents per cord, but, the war having broke out, he enlisted November 17, 1861, and was mustered into service at Camp Dennison as a private in the Third Ohio Independent Battery. His first active engagement was at Shiloh, and later he participated in the battles of Corinth, Raymond, Clinton, Jackson, Champion Hills and the siege of Vicksburg, where for forty-two days he was under fire. He then took part in the battles of Kenesaw Mountain, Atlanta and Nashville, after which he went to Ft. Donelson, where he heard the news of President Lincoln's assassination. He was mustered out as Sergeant in Cleveland, Ohio, in August, 1865.

Returning to his home in the Buckeye State, Mr. Palmer purchased an interest in a grocery, but it was soon afterwards burned, and in 1866 he went to Plymouth, where he carried o a bakery establishment until 1870. He then sold out and went to Madison County, Ala., where he engaged in raising cotton for three years, and in 1873 returned to Princeton, Ind. There he again carried on a bakery and restaurant, and subsequently was proprietor of a large hotel in that place, where he did business until May, 1886, when he traded his hotel for his sawmill and about two hundred acres of land. He now owns two hundred and eighty-five acres of land and has turned out in one year two million feet of lumber. He recently purchased a large mill in Scott County, Mo., and five hundred acres of good timberland. He also carries on farming to a limited extent. In 1865, Mr. Palmer married Miss Levina Kepler, and unto them were born three children: Arthur, Jennie, and one who died in infancy. In 1875 Mr. Palmer was again married, his second union being with Miss Ella Hossler, by whom he has nine children, as follows: Mary, Maggie, Susan, Laura, , Jessie, Fred, James, Lena F. and Ruth.

Mr. Palmer is a man of excellent business ability, and although he started out in life a poor boy , he has steadily worked his way upward, overcoming the obstacles and difficulties in his path by a determined will and enterprise. He is now at the head of a large and paying business, and he may feel justly proud of his success, which has been achieved by his own well-directed efforts. In politics he is a Democrat, and socially a member of the Masonic fraternity and the Grand Army of the Republic. Such a life as he has led has not only won him prosperity, but has gained him the confidence and esteem of all with whom he has been brought in contact.

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FELIX GARNIER, of Newton, is a representative of one of the early families of Jasper County. He is a son of Francis Gamier, who was born in the department of Haute Saone, France, 1802. On attaining to man's estate he was united in marriage with Miss Annettie Prudent. For a number of years he was in the French army, and on retiring from the service was appointed to the position of Forester by virtue of his military service. In 1845 he left his native land and crossed the broad Atlantic, accompanied by his family, consisting of five children. They first settled in Holmes County, Ohio, and ten years later came to Jasper County, locating upon a farm in Wade Township, about three and a-half miles west of Newton. A part of the old homestead is still in possession of members of the family. The mother of our subject died in Ohio, after which the father was twice married. He outlived his third wife and passed his last years with his children. His death occurred at the home of his son Felix in Newton, December 31, 1875, in the seventy-fourth year of his age. As stated, he was a soldier for a number of years in the French army, and as such visited a number of European countries. He was esteemed as an honest and upright citizen.

The family which, as before stated, numbered five children, three sons and two daughters, has not been broken by death. Amelia, the eldest, is now the wife of Thomas Shepherd, and resides upon a part of the old homestead farm. Felix is the second in order of birth. Sebastian and John are twins. The former resides near Newton and the latter in California. Adelia is the wife of A. J. Woods, of Newton, and is the youngest of the family.

Our subject is a native of France but at an early age he left that country and came with his parents to America. His boyhood days were spent on the home farm, but he determined to follow some other pursuit than that of agriculture and so learned the trade of a blacksmith in Millersburgh, the county seat of Holmes County, Ohio. He had just entered manhood when he came with his father's family to Jasper County. For about twenty-one years he was engaged in blacksmithing in Newton, but many years ago he abandoned that occupation and has since been a dealer in agricultural implements. He handles all kinds of farm machinery, wagons, etc., keeps on hand a large stock, and has built up a large trade. Fair and honorable in all his dealings, he has secured the confidence of his patrons and their high esteem.

In 1863 Mr. Gamier was joined in wedlock with Miss Elizabeth Rae, who was born in Jasper County, ad is a daughter of Nicholas Rae, one of the pioneer settlers of this county. Her birth occurred June 1, 1844. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Gamier have been born eight children, three sons and five Mr. Gamier has been a resident of Jasper County for the long period of thirty-eight years. He remembers well its appearance in those early days, when much of the land was a wilderness, the work of improvement having been scarcely begun. He has ever borne his part in the upbuilding of the county, has been for many years one of the representative business men of Newton, and has ever possessed the respect and esteem of his fellow citizens.

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NATHAN THOMAS is engaged in farming on section 5, town 6, Wade Township, Jasper County. He is recognized as one of the enterprising and thrifty farmers of the community, and owns eighty acres of arable land, pleasantly situated about four miles from Newton. When he came into possession of it it was a wild and unimproved tract, but he fenced, plowed and planted the land, and soon had the entire amount under a high state of cultivation. It is furnished with all the accessories of a model farm, including a neat and substantial residence, good barns and other outbuildings, and an orchard, etc. The neat and well-kept appearance of the place indicates the practical and progressive spirit of the owner, and the improvements thereon stand as a monument to his enterprise.

Mr. Thomas was born in Wayne County, Ind., May 5, 1826. The family is of English origin, and was early established in South Carolina in Colonial days. The grandfather, Edward Thomas, was a young man during the Revolutionary War, and was pressed into the British service as a teamster, he afterwards became one of the pioneer settlers of Ohio, there reared his family, and died at the advanced age of eighty-five years. Elihu Thomas, the father of our subject, was born in South Carolina, and with his parents went to Ohio, where he grew to manhood and married Jane Van Neeten, a native of that State and a daughter of John Van Neeten, who was of Scotch descent. Elihu Thomas was a carpenter by trade, but after his removal with his family to Indiana about 1836, he followed farming for thirty years In 1865, he came to Illinois and located on a farm in Jasper County, where he spent his last days. He died in March, 1889, at the age of eighty-six years. He was twice married, his first wife dying in this county in 1869, and his second wife in 1888.

Our subject is the eldest of a family of five sons and four daughters. The next younger is Phineas, a farmer of Wayne County, Ind. Elijah is now deceased, as is also Naoma. Lewis S. served through the late war as a member of the Fifty-seventh Indiana Infantry; he afterwards resided in Jasper County, Ill., for a year, and then was engaged in business in Olney for a year, after which he removed to Kansas, and became a resident of Ft. Scott. Wesley E. was a soldier of the Fifty-seventh Indiana Infantry, and gave his life in defense of the Union, being killed at Chattanooga. Ruth is the wife of Ben F. Britton, of Jasper County. Nannie is the wife of G. V. Vanderhoof, of Newton, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work.

Upon the old homestead in the county of his nativity, Nathan Thomas was reared to manhood. His education was acquired in the common schools, and he remained with his father until he attained his majority. During that time he learned the carpenter's trade, which he afterwards followed in Wayne and Grant Counties, Ind., for about seven years. He then settled upon a farm in the former county, and was engaged in its cultivation for some time. In 1865, he came with his family to Illinois, locating in Jasper County, where he rented land for a few years, and then purchased the tract on which he now makes his home.

Mr. Thomas was first married in Wayne County, Ind., February 6, 1848, to Miss Margaret Jennings, a native of Wayne County, and a daughter of Samuel Jennings. Her death occurred in Indiana, September 10, 1864. Three children were born of that union. W. H. and James M. are both farmers of Jasper County, and Mary E. is the wife of William Payne of the same county. Mr. Thomas was married May 4, 1869, to Harriet E. Cowman, who was born in Putnam County, Ind., and was reared in Cumberland County, this State. Her father, Samuel Cowman, was one of the early settlers of Illinois. Five children were born of this union: Samuel Elmer, who aids in the operation of the home farm; Charles W., attending school; Ella D. and Eva, twins; and a daughter, Lillie M., who died in March, 1891, at the age of seventeen years. For more than a quarter of a century, Mr. Thomas has been a resident of Jasper County, and during these many years he has become not only widely but favorably known. His life has been one of uprightness, well worthy of emulation. In politics he was in early life a Whig. In 1856 he voted for John C. Fremont, and supported the Republican party for some time, but is now independent, voting for the man whom he thinks best qualified to fill the office.

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HARRISON DECK, who is numbered among the early settlers of Jasper County, and is one of its representative farmers resides on section 27, Small wood Township. He was born in Oberlin, Ohio, March 30, 1840. His parents were John E. and Mercy M.(Mattoon) Deck. The father was born in the Empire State in 1810, and was a wagon-maker by trade. He was married in New York, and then emigrated to Ohio, where he remained for several years, after which he became a resident of Olney, Ill. This was in 1846. There he built a wagon-shop and engaged in business in that line until his death, which occurred at about the age of fifty years. His wife was born in Wales in 1812. Her mother died when she was quite young, and Mrs. Deck went to live with an aunt, with whom she came to America. She died in Maxberg, Ill., January 18, 1893. Unto this worthy couple were born four children, three sons and a daughter.

Harrison Deck, the eldest, was about six years of age when his parents left the Buckeye State and took up their residence in Olney, Ill. In its public schools he acquired a good education. After the breaking out of the late war, he responded to the country's call for troops, enlisting December 1, 1861, as a member of Company A, Sixty-third Illinois Infantry, in which he served until July 30, 1865, when he was honorably discharged. He did duty as wagon-master, and was injured by a wagon running over his right foot as they were going to the battlefield of Lookout Mountain. Mr. Deck also had two brothers in the service, Henry and Samuel C. The former is now proof reader in the Times office of Chicago, and the latter is a prominent resident and the owner of a sawmill in New Burnside, Ill.

When the country no longer needed his service, Mr. Deck returned to Lawrence County, Ill., where he operated a rented farm for a year. He then went to Tennessee, and was foreman of a cotton plantation for one year. On the expiration of that period, he came to Jasper County, where he rented land for four years, and then bought eighty acres of raw prairie land, which he has since trans formed into a valuable farm. Its well-tilled fields and good improvements indicate his thrift and enterprise, and the place is one of the best country homes in this locality.

On the 16th of June, 1860, Mr. Deck was united in marriage with Parthenia Ann, daughter of Michael and Elizabeth (Lutze) Stauffer, early settlers of Richland County, her father having built the second house in Olney. She was born in that city, June 4, 184'2. Five children have graced the union of our subject and his wife. Harrison is now deceased; Luella May resides in Marshall town, Iowa; William Henry is a farmer of this county; Irvin F. and Myrtie Mercy are at home. The mother of this family died December 9, 1887, and on the 8th of September, 1888, Mr. Deck was united in marriage with Mrs. Rozetta J. Snider, who was born May 16, 1855, in Hendrix County, Ind., and is a daughter of Silas S. and Catherine (Spencer) Van Treece. The father was born in 1812, in Kentucky, and the mother is a native of Rush County, Ind. They now reside in Oklahoma. Mrs. Deck had four children by her former mar riage: Feudal B., Florence P. , Birdie and Charles W. A daughter has been born of the second union, Celia Etna, born August 5, 1890.

Mr. Deck, in his political views, is a Republican. Himself and wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and are highly respected citizens, and are widely and favorably known in this community. Mr. Deck has been the architect of his own fortunes, and his success in life is the result of his own well-directed efforts.

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HARRISON CROUS, who resides on section 11, South Muddy Township, Jasper County, devotes his energies to farming and stock-raising, and is considered one of the leading agriculturists of this community. His life record is as follows: A native of Clay County, Ind., he was born September 9, 1843. His father, Martin Crouse, was a native of North Carolina, and was of German extraction. After attaining to man's estate, he married Susan Whitehead, and unto them were born fifteen children. With one exception all grew to mature years. They were Winston, Lina, William (who was a member of Company A, Forty-third Indiana Infantry, and died at Helena, Ark., in 1862, from disease contracted in the service) Frankie, Eli, Calvin, Andrew, Wade, Stephen, Henry (who was for several months held as a prisoner during the late war and died in Libby Prison in 1863), Benjamin, Harrison, Frederick and Susan. Of the ten sons of this family, nine were numbered among the boys in blue of the late war, and Winston and William were also in the Mexican War.

Under the parental roof, Harrison Crouse grew to manhood. In his youth he attended the subscription schools to a limited extent, but has acquired his education more largely through experience, reading and observation. When the late war broke out, fired by patriotic impulses and a desire to aid. his country in her hour of peril, he enlisted August 20, 1861, although only seventeen years of age, and was assigned to Company A, Forty-third Indiana Infantry. He saw much hard service, and participated in the battles of New Madrid, Island No. 10, Riddle's Point, Ft. Pillow, Memphis, Ft. Charles, Ft. Pemberton, Helena, Lit tie Rock, Elkins' Fort, Marks' Mills and Jenkins' Ferry, and also many smaller engagements. He was captured by the enemy at Marks' Mills in 1863, and was held a prisoner for exactly ten months, being incarcerated at Camp Ford, at Tyler, Tex. After being exchanged in 1864, he rejoined his regiment and served until the close of the war. He was promoted to the rank of Corporal, and in June, 1865, received an honorable discharge in Indianapolis. Mr. Crouse was only a boy when he entered the army, but he saw much hard service and was as faithful and true to the Old Flag as those of maturer years.

Returning to his home in the Hoosier State, our subject rented land and there engaged in farming until 1868, which year witnessed his arrival in Jasper County, Ill. The two succeeding years of his life were passed in Smallwood Township, after which he removed to the farm of forty acres which he had first purchased on coming to the county.

Ere coming to Illinois, Mr. Crouse was married. On the 20th of September, 1866, he was married to Miss Martha J. Adda, and their union was blessed with the following children: Eveline; Solomon, who died October 4, 1870; Lydia and Ida, twins, who died on the 6th of April, 1871, and the 2d of February, 1872, respectively; John, who died February 12, 1874; Adam; Susie deceased; Margaret; Emma; William; Albert, who died October 15, 1890; and Ethel.

The parents hold membership with the Methodist Church, and in the community where they reside are numbered among the prominent and influential citizens. Mr. Crouse is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic. He has held the office of Commissioner of Highways, and exercises his right of franchise in support of the Republican party, but has never been an aspirant for political preferment. He desires rather to devote his time and attention to his business interests. He lived upon his first farm of forty acres until 1882, when he removed to his present home. He now owns eighty acres of good land on section 11, South Muddy Township, and is successfully engaged in general farming and stock-raising.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 282


JAMES C. IRELAND, one of the representative farmers and early settlers of Willow Hill Township, Jasper County, residing on section 7, was born in Decatur County, Ind., and was the fourth child in a family of nine children, one son and eight daughters. The parents were Richard and Louisiana (Callahan) Ireland. The father was born in Kentucky, March 25, 1802, and remained with his parents on the old home farm in that State until his marriage, which was celebrated October 28, 1824. Soon afterward he emigrated with his young wife to Decatur County, Ind., and entered land from the Government. The tract was in the midst of heavy timber. Soon, however, the woodman's axe awakened the echoes and when the trees were hewed down, he plowed and planted his land, making that farm his home until 1849, in which year he sold out and came to Jasper County, Ill. Here he again entered Government land, securing about one thousand acres, and to its improvement he devoted his energies until his death. He passed away April 9, 1873. His wife, who was born March 30, 1805, and has therefore reached the advanced age of eighty-eight years, now makes her home with our subject.

James C. Ireland was about seventeen years of age when he came to this county with his parents. Up to that date he had spent his entire life upon his father's farm in Indiana, and had attended the country schools, which afforded him his educational privileges. With his father he came to Illinois and remained under the parental roof until he had arrived at man's estate, when he left home to make his own way in the world. His father gave him one hundred and twenty acres of land, upon which he located and which he has since made his home. At that time the country was but sparsely settled. The nearest railroad was at Terre Haute, Ind. All kinds of wild game were plentiful, including deer and such small game as turkeys, ducks, etc. Mr. Ireland has borne the experiences of frontier life and has witnessed almost the entire development of the county.

On the 6th of April, 1854, our subject married Miss Nancy Neal, who was born in Shelby County, Ind., February 5, 1836, and was a daughter of Thomas and Eliza (Wilson) Neal. Her father was born in Kentucky, November 20, 1803, was of English extraction and died in Jasper County, January 3, 1882. Her mother, whose birth occurred in Pennsylvania, November 24, 1808, and who is of Irish lineage, is still living in Indiana. Mrs. Ireland came to this county with her parents when a maiden of fifteen years, and has since here resided.

Eleven children were born to our subject and his wife, two sons and nine daughters, of whom nine are yet living: Mary E., wife of Milton Sims, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work; Martha J., wife of L. B. Smith, a farmer of 13 Crawford County, Ill.; Margera, who died in infancy; Eliza; Anna, who is engaged in teaching school; Sarah, wife of Charles Dodd, a prosperous farmer of Jasper County; George P. , who operates the home farm; Alice; Cora; and Richard T. The children have all received good educational advantages and are thus fitted for the practical duties of life.

In his social relations, Mr. Ireland is a Mason and Odd Fellow, holding membership with Cooper Lodge No. 489, A. F. & A. M., of Willow Hill, and Hunt City Lodge No. 610, I. O. O. F., of Hunt City. He exercises his right of franchise in support of the Democratic party. He is a successful farmer and now owns and operates two hundred acres of rich land, pleasantly located about two miles south of Willow Hill. The Ireland household is noted for its hospitality, and the members of the family hold an enviable position in social circles.

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THOMAS MATTHEWS, one of the representative farmers of Smallwood Township, Jasper County, residing on section 33, claims Indiana as the State of his nativity, his birth having occurred in Fountain County, February 17, 1834. His father was John Matthews, and his mother bore the maiden name of Vina Clawson. The former was a native of Virginia, and in an early day went with his parents to Ohio, he became a carpenter and cabinet-maker and followed those trades throughout the greater part of his life, in connection with which he also carried on farming. His death occurred in Warren County, Ind., April 8, 1850, and his wife, who was a native of New York, died in Indiana in 1845. On the paternal side our subject is of German descent, and on the maternal side is of Irish lineage. The Matthews family numbered eight, children, five sons and three daughters, of whom our subject is the fourth in order of birth. Jacob and Timothy are now deceased; Mary Ann, widow of John Linebaugh, resides in Golden, Colo.; Tobias L. died in the service of his country during the late war; Abraham is a law and loan agent of Michigan; Rachel Jane is the wife of Sidney Gebhard, of Aurora, Neb.; and Sarah Elizabeth is the wife of Charles Peterson, of Vermilion County, Ill.

Mr. Matthews whose name heads this record began life for himself at the tender age of twelve years, when he was bound out to George Poe, a farmer of Warren County, Ind., with whom he remained until eighteen years of age. He then worked on the farm by the month for about a year, after which he began farming in his own interest, renting land in the Hoosier State until 1866. He then came to Jasper County and purchased the farm upon which he has since resided. He now owns and operates two hundred acres of valuable land, and the well-tilled fields and neat appearance of his place indicate the practical and progressive spirit of the owner, while the many improvements stand as monuments to his thrift and enterprise.

On the 22d of November, 1856, Mr. Matthews was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth J. Jones, who was born January 7, 1837, in Indiana. Four children graced this union, but Rachel A., the first-born, died when only about three years of age; Melissa E. is the wife of Jerry Skelton, a clerk in a grocery store in Newton, Ill.; Artemus L. is one of the leading and prosperous farmers of Jasper County. He now devotes his attention to fruit-growing and has a fine orchard of forty acres. He is a highly-educated young man and was admitted to the Bar to practice law, but as his father wished him to look after the farm he returned home and is now managing that property. Ida May, the youngest member of the Matthews family, is now the wife of Dr. Walter Me Taggart, of Bogota, Ill. Mr. Matthews, his wife and daughters are all members of the Christian Church, and the family is one of prominence in the community, its members ranking high in social circles where true worth and ability are received as the passports into good society. Mr. Matthews is a stanch temperance man and votes with the Prohibition party. He has served as Road Commissioner in his township for two terms. Socially, he is a member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen of Newton. His honorable career is well worthy of emulation and his success in business life should encourage young men who, like himself, have to start out empty-handed.

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WILLIAM A. JACKSON, a farmer, brick mason and plasterer, residing on section 31, Wade Township, Jasper County, was born on the 30th of August, 1846, in Davies County, Ind. He was left an orphan when a lad of seven summers and at a very early age was thrown upon his own resources. In his youth he came to Illinois, going first to Robinson, Crawford County. His school privileges were quite limited and his education has been mostly acquired since he has arrived at years of maturity. In his early life he learned the trade of a brick mason and plasterer in Terre Haute, Ind., serving a three-years apprenticeship and then working for three years under instruction. About 1867 he went to Effingham and embarked in business for himself. Many of the business houses and private residences in that city stand as monuments to his thrift and enterprise.

For nine years Mr. Jackson worked in Effingham, after which he determined to seek a home elsewhere. It was in 1877 that he came to Jasper County, purchased land and located upon the farm which is now his home. He built and fenced the entire amount and placed acre after acre under the plow until the entire amount was highly cultivated. He has a pleasant and substantial residence upon the place and all other modern improvements that surround the home of a progressive citizen. In the home farm are sixty acres of valuable land, and in addition to this he owns a tract of one hundred and fifty acres, which is now rented. Leaving his sons to operate the farm, Mr. Jackson works at his trade during the summer months. Since locating in this county he has followed that business in Newton and has aided in erecting some of its best public buildings and residences, including the court house, schoolhouse, Church of St. Marie, and other public and private edifices. Mr. Jackson is considered one of the best workmen in his line in this part of the State.

On the 19th of December, 1871, in Newton, our subject was united in marriage with Miss Nannie Conway, a native of Crawford County, Ind., who came to Illinois when a child of five years with her father, Green Conway, who settled upon a farm in Wade Township, Jasper County, and there reared his f amity. Mrs. Jackson is a lady of excellent education, has superior accomplishments and has been a successful music teacher. Four children have been born of this union. Charles and Orrin R. operate the home farm and are learning the brick mason's trade with their father. John W. and Lewis M. are the younger members of the family.

The parents are both members of the Sandy Creek First Christian Church. Mr. Jackson is an Odd Fellow and has twice filled all of the different chairs in the order. He is also a member of the Red Men's Lodge, of Effingham, and the Modern Woodmen Lodge, of Newton. In politics he is identified with the Democratic party. We see in Mr. Jackson a self-made man, who at a very early age was thrown upon his own resources and forced to make his own way in the world. We thus see that whatever success that he has achieved in life is due to his own efforts and it is not a little. His career has been a prosperous one and has been characterized by an honest and upright course that has gained him the confidence and good-will of all with whom he has been brought in contact.

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JOSEPH JOURDAN, an enterprising farmer residing on section 8, Wade Township, is a representative of the oldest family in years of residence in Jasper County. The name of Jourdan has long been connected with the history of this community. The father of our subject, James Jourdan, came here in 1826. He was born in Knox County, Ind., and there grew to manhood. After his marriage he followed farming in his native State for a year and then came to Illinois. He settled in what is now Jasper County and, as before stated, was its first permanent resident. He had married Melinda Scott, who was a native of Kentucky, and in that State spent the first fourteen years of her life, afterward going to Indiana. Several years after his arrival here, Mr. Jourdan entered land from the Government and made a permanent location on the farm which is now the home of his son Joseph. The tract was raw prairie in its primitive condition, but he at once began its development and soon transformed a considerable portion of it into rich and fertile fields. His last days were spent upon the old homestead. Mrs. Jourdan long survived her husband and cared for her children until they were able to care for themselves. She was called to the home beyond in 1881, and her remains were interred by those of her husband in the Vanderhoof Cemetery. Thus two worthy pioneers passed away, but they performed an important work in Jasper County in opening it up to settlement and their names should ever have a prominent place upon the pages of its history.

Joseph Jourdan is one of a family of four sons and two daughters, who grew to mature years, of whom two sons and two daughters are yet living. He spent the days of his boyhood under the parental roof and was reared among the wild scenes of the frontier. He remained with his mother until 1862, when, his elder brother having gone to the war, he took charge of the farm and business of the family. Since that time he has operated the old homestead, which on the death of his mother he purchased of the heirs. The many improvements he has placed upon it all stand as monuments to his practical and progressive spirit. He has built a pleasant residence and a good barn and added other accessories found upon a model farm of the nineteenth century. The old homestead comprises ninety acres and in addition to this he owns two other tracts, one of eighty acres and the other of twenty, both highly improved places.

In Crooked Creek Township, November 20, 1861, Mr. Jourdan was joined in wedlock with Mary Musgrove, who was born in this county and is a daughter of Stephen Musgrove. Her father was also a native of this State, and one of the honored pioneers of Jasper County. Five children have been born of the union of our subject and his wife: John Franklin, who is married and follows farming in Wade Township; Nancy C., wife of William Hinman, an agriculturist of the same township; Iredell, Minnie and Thomas, who are still at home.

As Mr. Jourdan has spent his entire life in Jasper County, he has seen nearly its entire development from a state of wilderness. He has aided in the work of upbuilding and advancement and has borne his part in transforming its wild lands into tracts of rich fertility. In his social relations our subject is connected with the United Workmen and the Knights of Honor of Newton. He exercises his right of franchise in support of the Republican party and has supported its men and measures since casting his first Presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln in 1860. Himself and wife hold membership with the Presbyterian Church, to the support of which they contribute liberally. The Jourdan family is well known in Jasper County, the Jourdan household is the abode of hospitality and its members rank high in the social circles in which they move.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 290

JAMES C. VAWTER, assistant Postmaster of Bogota, is one of the honored pioneers of Jasper County, and for a long period was prominently connected with its agricultural interests. Born in Jefferson County, Ind., on the 22d of January, 1825, he was the seventh in a family of eleven children, seven sons and four daughters, born unto Beverly and Elizabeth (Crawford) Vawter. The latter was of Scotch-Irish descent, and the former of German and French extraction. The father was born in Virginia, September 28, 1789, and during his boyhood removed to Kentucky, where he remained for several years, after which he emigrated to Jefferson County, Ind. He was a millwright and wool-carder by trade, and served as a soldier in the War of 1812. His last days were spent in the Hoosier State, where he died in the eighty-third year of his age. His wife, a native of Virginia, died in Indiana, at the age of seventy-five.

Under the parental roof James Vawter spent the days of his childhood, and his time was passed in working on the farm or in the mill. He was usually busy during his boyhood, but he thereby developed habits of industry and energy which have proved of incalculable benefit to him in his later years. After attaining to man's estate, Mr. Vawter chose as a companion and helpmate on life's journey Mary C. Elder, who was born in Kentucky, December 2, 1826, and during her early girlhood went to Decatur County, Ind. Their union, which was celebrated October 26, 1848, has been blessed with five sons and four daughters, but four are now deceased. The eldest, Ann E., is the wife of T. C. Rogers, a carpenter and farmer residing in Jasper County. Silas B. is a resident farmer of Kansas; Xelima is the wife of Abram Goldsmith, an agriculturist of Clay County, Ill.; Albert G. follows the same pursuit in this county; and Henry O. is also a farmer.

During the late war, Mr. Vawter manifested his loyalty to the Government by entering the service on the 18th of November, 1861, as a member of Company I, Sixty-sixth Illinois Infantry, in which he served until February 1, 1863, when he was discharged on account of ill-health. He is now a member of Hankins Post No. 675, G. A. R., of Bogota, and in politics is a warm advocate of Republican principles. With the Christian Church he holds membership.

Upon his marriage, Mr. Vawter left home and went to Decatur County, Ind., where for two years he operated a rented farm. It was in 1852 that he came to Jasper County, and entered one hundred and twenty acres of Government land. It was a raw and unimproved tract, but he at once began its development and soon the wild prairie was transformed into rich and fertile fields. He made many improvements upon the same, and it became one of the best farms of the locality. Desiring to lay aside the arduous duties of agriculture, however, he sold his farm in 1891, and removed to Bogota, where he has since served as Assistant Postmaster. In the long years of his residence here, Jasper County has found in him a valuable and public-spirited citizen, his business associates have found him an honorable man in all his dealings, and his acquaintances in social circles know him to be a genial, pleasant gentleman.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 302

JOHN Z. WINTERROWD, a practical and progressive farmer of Wade Township, Jasper County, residing on section 10, dates his residence in this community since 1860. He is therefore numbered among its earliest settlers, and as such well deserves representation in this volume. He is one of the worthy citizens that Indiana has furnished to Jasper County. He was born in Shelby County, of the Hoosier State, July 15, 1848, and is a son of John Winterrowd, a native of Pennsylvania. The grandfather, Peter Winterrowd, was also born in Pennsylvania, where the family was founded in an early day. The Winterrowds are of German descent. The grandfather removed to Darke County, Ohio, about 1802, locating there when the county was almost an unbroken wilderness. The father of our subject there married, but his first wife died, and in Shelby County, Ind., he wedded Dorothy Cookson, a native of Tennessee. He removed to Indiana about 1830, and became one of the pioneers of Shelby County, where he cleared and developed a farm and reared his family. Selling his property there in 1860, he came to Jasper County, Ill., and again found himself a pioneer. He located upon the farm where his son now resides and here spent the remainder of his days, being called to his final rest, January 3, 1870. His wife passed away in 1887, and they were laid side by side in Steward Cemetery.

The Winterrowd family numbered seven children, who grew to mature years, five sons and two daughters. Washington, the eldest, died in Texas; Nancy is still living; Jacob K. is now deceased; Seldon J. is a farmer of Livingston County, Mo.; Sebastian F. is deceased; Elizabeth A. is the wife of B. F. Moulden, of Shelby County, Ind.

The subject of this sketch, who is the youngest of this family, came to Illinois with his parents when a lad of twelve summers, and was reared to manhood on the old homestead. He received good educational advantages and remained with his father until he had attained his majority. Mr. Winterrowd was married March 5, 1868, to Miss Barbara J. Buckingham, a native of Monroe County, Ohio, and a daughter of John W. Buckingham. After his marriage he remained with his father for about two years and then rented a farm in Effingham County for two years. During his residence there his wife died, her death occurring on the 11th of December, 1870.

After her death Mr. Winterrowd went to Kansas and spent one summer in Montgomery County, where he took up a claim. He then returned to his home in Jasper County and took charge of the farm and business of the homestead, to the possession of which he succeeded by purchasing the interest of the other heirs. He has greatly improved the place by erecting a pleasant and substantial residence, good barns and outbuildings. He has also extended the boundaries of the farm until it now comprises one hundred and seventy acres of rich land, which yields a golden tribute in return for his care and labor.

In his political affiliations Mr. Winterrowd has always been a Republican. His first Presidential vote was cast for Gen. U. S. Grant in 1872. He is well informed on the issues of the day, and takes quite an active part in local politics. He has served as Town Clerk for one term, and for many years has been a member of the School Board, during which time he has done effective service in the interests of education. He was one of the organizers of the County Fair Association, was elected one of the first directors and served as such for several years. He was also Vice-President and Treasurer of the County Agricultural Board.

Mr. Winterrowd was a second time married, November 15, 1871, the lady of his choice being Miss Virginia R. Bridges, who was born, reared and educated in Jasper County, and is a daughter of William Bridges, one of the honored early settlers of this community, formerly of Virginia. By his first marriage Mr. Winterrowd had one son, Harry S., now a successful teacher and farmer of this country. Five children have been born of the second marriage: Walter E., Charlie C., Addie E., Joe H. and Nellie E. The four younger members of the family are attending school.

Mr. Winterrowd has spent nearly his entire life in this community and is well known in Newton and Jasper Counties. He is recognized as one of the enterprising agriculturists, and is a progressive and representative citizen. His life has been well and worthily spent. He has won success in his business career and in his intercourse with his fellow-men he has gained the high respect of a large circle of friends and acquaintances.

Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p 303

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