BIOGRAPHIES published in
the "Biographical Record of Kane County, Illinois"
Originally printed by the S.J. Clarke Publishing Company, Chicago, 1898
All biographies submitted by K. Torp
Jacob N. Hoyt
JACOB N. HOYT, who resides on section 11, Kaneville township, is one of the active and enterprising farmers of Kane county, owning and operating a farm of four hundred and twenty acres, which was long
known as the Livingston farm. He is a native of New Hampshire, born in Concord, December 15, 1831. His father, Hon. Jacob Hoyt, was also born in Concord, his birth occurring March 28, 1772, while his grandfather, John Hoyt, was likewise a native of the Granite state. The family are of English ancestry, and originally settled in New Hampshire prior to the Revolutionary war. Abner Hoyt, a brother of Jacob, was a soldier in that war.
Jacob Hoyt, who was a farmer by occupation, grew to manhood in his native state, and there married Fannie Tucker, who was born in Canton, Massachusetts. They became the parents of five sons and five daughters, of whom our subject and one brother, J. T., are the only survivors. The latter now resides in California. The father was a prominent man in his county and state, and was elected and served several terms in the legislature, and held other positions of trust and honor, being one of the three selectmen of his town. As an occupation he followed farming his entire life, and was quite prosperous.
His death occurred on the old farm April 17, 1864, at the ripe old age of ninety-two years. His wife survived him a few years, dying at the age of ninety-five years.
The subject of this sketch grew to manhood in Concord, and was educated in the common schools and in Andover and other academies. For several terms, after leaving school, he engaged in teaching in his native state. In 1853, when a young man, he moved to Cleveland, Ohio, and there engaged in the lumber business for a time, and later was in the Cleveland post office ten years, having charge of the registered letter department. Leaving that position, he was engaged with his brother at Castalia, Ohio, in the manufacture of paper for several years.
At Delaware, Ohio, May 20, 1862, Mr. Hoyt was united in marriage with Mary A. Latimer, who was born and reared at that place, and who was a daughter of Sylvester Latimer. She died at Castalia, December 21, 1866, leaving three children, as follows: William L., who is married and is residing in Nebraska; Robert T., married, and residing in Chicago, where he is engaged in business; and Harry M., who is assisting his father in operating the farm.
In 1868 Mr. Hoyt came west and located in Macon county, Illinois, where he bought and also leased a section of land, and engaged in farming. In 1869 he returned to Concord, New Hampshire, and was there married, April 7 of that year, to Mrs. Eunice N. Thayer, nee Brown, who had one son by her former marriage, Charles G., who is now married and engaged in business in Chicago. Immediately after their marriage, Mr. Hoyt returned with his bride to Macon county, Illinois, where he was successfully engaged in farming until 1884. He then sold his farm and moved to Kane county, Illinois, having previously purchased the farm on which he now resides, and which he has greatly improved since it came into his possession. He has built several barns and outbuildings", tiled much of the land, and has made of it a model farm. Mrs. Hoyt died on this farm, February 19, 1888, leaving two sons, Edward L. and J. Walter, the former married and is residing on the home farm, and an adopted daughter, named Belle, resides at home.
Politically Mr. Hoyt is-a Democrat of the old school, and cast his first presidential ballot for James Buchanan, in 1856. While residing in Macon county, he took quite an active part in politics, and served seven consecutive years as a member of the county board of supervisors. In the spring of 1898 he was elected supervisor of Kaneville township, and is now faithfully discharging the duties of that office. For some eight or ten years he was township trustee, and being a friend of education and the public schools, he served some years as a member of the school board. During the war he contributed largely towards its vigorous prosecution. Fraternally he is a Mason, a member of Blackberry lodge, A. F. & A. M., at Elburn, and of Sycamore commandery, K. T., of Sycamore, De Kalb county, Illinois. He has served as worshipful master of Blackberry lodge, and has represented the lodge in the Grand Lodge of the state. While not numbered among the pioneers of the state, Mr. Hoyt has given thirty of the best years of his life to its growth and development, and in every enterprise which has a tendency for the public good, he is willing to give of his time and means. He is an enterprising and successful farmer, and is worthy of the esteem in which he is held.
DE WITT CLINTON PRATT, the oldest photographer in Aurora, was born in the town of Homer, Cortland county, New York, August 14, 1823, and is the son of David and Electa (Alexander) Pratt, the former a native of Connecticut, and the latter of Vermont. By occupation he was a farmer, and in the war of 1812 was a fifer in a New York regiment. He served only a short time, and although the regiment was anxious to go into battle it did not have a chance on account of the war being brought to a sudden close. Both he and his wife were members of the Presbyterian church. His death occurred at Homer, New York, at the age of sixty-five years. His wife survived him, dying at the age of sixty-seven years. Of their family of ten children, six still survive. One son, Francis M., lives in Lake Forrest, Illinois, while a daughter, Mrs. H. Wood, resides in Aurora. The subject of this sketch remained upon the home farm until thirteen years of age, then went to learn the painting and cabinet maker's trade, finishing all kinds of furniture. Having no particular taste for cabinet making, but having a strong liking for painting, he discontinued cabinet making, and devoted his attention exclusively to painting. In 1845 he came west to Chicago, where he remained one year, working for a firm, doing ornamental painting on furniture. From Chicago he went to Waukegan, then called Little Fork, where he remained until 1849, working at his trade. Having painter's colic, by the advice of his physician, he quit working at his trade, although in after years he did a little in that line. At that time the making of daguerreotypes had assumed some importance, and Mr. Pratt determined to learn to make them. From a lady who understood the business he received instructions, giving in exchange work at his trade. After learning the business Mr. Pratt in the fall of 1849 removed to St. Charles, and set up an establishment. He there remained until 1853, although he established himself in business in Aurora in 1851, while still making his home in St. Charles. In 1853 he moved his family to Aurora, which has since been his home, with the exception of one year spent in Boston. Beginning with the daguerreotypes, he soon learned to make ambrotypes and later photographs, and has been in the business from that time to the present, almost fifty years. He is now the oldest photographer in Aurora, and is called the veteran portrait man of the city. His work has always been rated as A No. 1, and he has carried off many prizes for the excellency of his work. The gallery is now run by his son, Edmund Clinton, who has inherited the artistic taste of his father.
In July, 1848, Mr. Pratt was united in marriage with Miss Mary Burdick, daughter of Paul Burdick, of Scott, New York. By this union there were six children, as follows: Flora, now the wife of Col. De Witt C. Sprague, who was for eight years minister to Germany, and is now in the auditor's office of the treasury department at Washington; Evlelyn E., who married Frank H. Vick, of Rochester, New York, but is now deceased; Frances, wife of Don D. Miles, a machinist engaged in the manufacture of fine tools in Aurora, and Edmund Clinton, of whom mention has already been made. Two children died in infancy. The mother of these children, who was a member of the Baptist church, dying in 1889, our subject, for his second wife, in 1894, married Mrs. Charlotte A. Newcomb, a widow of Rudolphus Newcomb, and daughter of James White, of Homer, New York. Both Mr. and Mrs. Pratt are members of the Congregational church. In politics he is thoroughly independent, voting for the man and not the party.
PROFESSOR WALTER H. CALLOW, principal and proprietor of the Elgin Business College, of Elgin, Illinois, was born April 4, 1866, in Linden, Wisconsin, and is a son of William and Elizabeth (Glasson) Callow, the former a native of the Isle of Man, and the latter of Mineral Point, Wisconsin. The paternal grandfather, who was a miner by occupation, spent his entire life on the Isle of Man. He had a large family of children. John Glasson, the maternal grandfather, was also a miner, who was born in England and at an early day came to America. He met his death in middle life, being lost in the gold mines at Grass Valley, California.
In 1860, William Callow, our subject's father, crossed the Atlantic to the United States, and four years later took up his residence upon his present farm near Linden, Wisconsin. Both he and his wife are ear-nest, consistent Christian people, faithful members of the Methodist church, and he is now serving as trustee. To them have been born nine children, namely: Walter H., Ulysses Grant, Forrest H., William L., Herman R., Clarence L., Gussie P. and Wesley H., all living; and Roxie L., deceased.
Professor Callow was reared upon the home farm, and after attending the district schools, he was a student for some time in the high school in Dodgeville, Wisconsin. Subsequently he worked for two years in a creamery, and then attended a business college for one year, while for two years he pursued the teacher's course at Valparaiso, Indiana. He then came to Elgin where he taught in Drew's Business College for four years, and in 1893 opened the Elgin Business College, which he has since successfully conducted. The course of study includes book-keeping, shorthand, arithmetic, typewriting, commercial law, correspondence, penmanship, business forms, spelling and business practice, and it is the object of the school to thoroughly prepare young men and women for business careers. The teachers are experienced and competent, and the school is meeting with a well-deserved success, having an average attendance of one hundred and thirty scholars.
On the 21st of August, 1890, Professor Callow was united in marriage to Miss Alvina Holman, a daughter of Matthew and Elizabeth (Batten) Holman, and to them have been born a son and a daughter - Alvah O., and Cora M. The family have a pleasant home at No. 555 Douglas avenue. The Professor and his wife are both active and prominent members of the Methodist church, in which he is now serving as steward, and politically, he is identified with the Republican party.
WATERMAN R. SUNDERLAND, now living retired in St. Charles, where he has made his home since September, 1869, was born in Shoreham, Addison county, Vermont, April 21, 1829, and is a worthy representative of an old and honored New England family of English origin. The first to come to the new world were three brothers, John, William and Samuel Sunderland, who were among the early settlers of Massachusetts. Samuel Sunderland, our subject's grandfather, was a soldier of the Revolutionary war, and in recognition of his services he was granted a pension by the government. He was one of the pioneers of Addison county, Vermont, and in the midst of the wilderness developed a farm and reared his family.
There his son, Waterman Sunderland, Sr., grew to manhood, and for his services in the war of 1812 he was given a land warrant. He married Lydia Haynes, who was born and reared in Middletown, Vermont, a daughter of Kiah Haynes, also a representative of an old family of that state. After his marriage, Mr. Sunderland continued to reside on the old homestead, caring for his father, while, he successfully operated the farm, upon which he lived until called to the world beyond. In his family were four sons and four daughters who reached years of maturity, Waterman R. being the youngest of those to reach maturity. The others were as follows: Volney lived for many years in Addison county, Vermont, and then removed to the northern part of the state, where he died at the age of eighty years; Charlotte Sophia married Ezekiel Prescott and first settled in Addison county, whence they later removed to Faribault, Minnesota; Cordelia Maria married Ambrose Hemenway and is now deceased; Jonathan married and resides on the old homestead, caring for his parents during their declining years, and there his death occurred; Marcia Amelia is the wife of Elijah Grosvenor and a resident of Addison county; Lydia Fidelia is the wife of O. V. Munn, of Freeport, Illinois; and Aaron died at the age of seven years. Rev. Byron Sunderland, a cousin of our subject, was chaplain of the senate during President Lincoln's administration. He is a very able man and has been pastor of one of the Presbyterian churches of Washington, District of Columbia, for half a century. He it was who performed the marriage ceremony of President Cleveland and Miss Frances Folsom.
Until nineteen years of age Waterman R. Sunderland, of this sketch, remained on the old homestead, and his early education obtained in the common schools was supplemented by three terms' attendance at the Shoreham Academy. On leaving the parental roof he began life for himself as a peddler, selling tinware for nine years in Addison and adjoining counties, and for four years he sold jewelry in the same way. In the spring of 1861 he removed to a farm in Port Henry, Essex county, New York, but two years later we find him en route for Illinois. Locating in Freeport, he entered the employ of a mercantile firm in June of 1863, traveling over the country with a wagon and selling notions at wholesale for six years. He then came to St. Charles and successfully engaged in 'the same business on his own account until 1893, when he laid aside business cares. His route extended over several counties and he enjoyed an extensive and profitable trade. Upright and reliable in his dealings, he made many friends and secured the confidence and high regard of all with whom he came in contact.
In Rochester, Vermont, Mr. Sunderland was married in July, 1855, to Miss Laura Rowley, who was born in Addison county and reared in Shoreham, that state. She died in St. Charles in October, 1887, leaving one daughter, Ida, now the wife of William Sunderland, of Elgin, Illinois. Our subject was again married in Franklin county, Vermont, March 7, 1889, his second union being with Miss Mary E. Sunderland, who was born, reared and educated in that county, and is a daughter of U. M. Sunderland, a native of Vermont and a second cousin of him whose name introduces this sketch. Our subject owns a comfortable and pleasant home in St. Charles, where he expects to spend his declining years. In August, 1897, he and his wife returned to Vermont, and after spending six enjoyable weeks in visiting the friends and scenes of their youth they returned by way of Canada, stopping at Montreal, where they also had friends living, and they
took in the sights of that great and interesting city.
Mr. Sunderland was reared a Whig, and has been a stanch Republican since casting his first presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln, in 1864. Public office has never had any attraction for him, but he has ever faithfully performed all duties of citizenship. His wife attends the Congregational church of St. Charles, and is one of its most active workers.
CHARLES W. WATSON, who is engaged in general farming on section 29, Hampshire township, is well known in the northern part of the county. As his father died while yet a young man the facts of his remote ancestry that might have been known are lost. Benjamin F. Watson, the father of our subject, was born in the town of Greene, Chenango county, New York, April 4, 1837, and came west when a boy. His father, William Watson, who married Submit Mack, came to northern Illinois seeking a home for his family and died at Naperville before their arrival. With a sister, Benjamin F. Watson came to Illinois, and for a time lived with her at Woodstock, McHenry county, Illinois. Colonel Julian, of that county, took a fancy to the boy and taking him to his home when but ten years of age, learned him the blacksmith trade. In five years and at an age when most boys are just beginning to think of choosing a trade or profession, he was an expert mechanic. After about three years at Elgin, doing the fine iron work on carriages and buggies for a factory at that place, he married and moved to Allen's Grove, Wisconsin, where he conducted a shop until his enlistment in the army. He enlisted in the Fourth Wisconsin Battery in September, 1861, serving in all the engagements of his command until stricken with typhoid fever, from the effects of the impure water, heat and dust incident to summers in the south. For twenty-two months he had been stationed at Fortress Monroe, where he was stricken with the fever. After but two days in the hospital at Yorktown, Virginia, so violent was the fever that he died August 4, 1863. He was married December 9, 1857, to Miss Helen Bell, born on the old homestead on section 29, Hampshire township, March 16, 1840.
The Bell family is one of the oldest and most respected in Kane county. Henry G. Bell, the grandfather of our subject, was born at Ogdensburg, New York, September 13, 1808. He was the son of Ralph Rudolphus Wheelock Bell, a native of Vermont, who was the son of Ralph Bell. Ralph R. W. Bell married Desire Reynolds, a native of Vermont, who lived until about 1876. Henry G. Bell spent his boyhood in Ogdensburg, New York, and in 1824 moved with the family to Detroit, Michigan, where he remained until March, 1837, and then came to Kane county, Illinois, taking up a claim in Burlington township. This claim was jumped and he was wrongfully deprived of his rights. He then came to Hampshire township, secured three hundred and twenty acres on section 29, and made a home here for his family, and on which he resided until his death, December 26, 1897. Owing to the wrong done him in Burlington, he seldom ever went there on business of any kind, doing his trading elsewhere. At the time of making his claim in Hampshire township, there was but one house between his place and Sycamore, De Kalb county, that of Mr. Shurtliff. Henry G. Bell was of a genial, sunny disposition, always happy. His only tribulation was getting the boys up in the morning. Sometimes, after repeatedly calling them, he would become provoked and angrily start up the stairs, but after mounting a step or two, would stop and reflect that anger was not conducive to longevity, and come down singing, leaving the boys to sleep. He was revered by all who knew him, and sincerely mourned when called to rest at the age of almost four score years and ten. Henry G. Bell married Charlotte R. DeWitt, who was left an orphan at the age of eight years. To them were born ten children, as follows: Martinette, who married Henry Phelps, of Charles City, Iowa; Helen, the mother of our subject; Prudence, widow of Dennis Remmington, of Kansas; George, who lives in Elgin; Charlotte, who married Melvin Poor, and resides in Nebraska; John, who lives in Genoa township, DeKalb county; Mary, who died in infancy; Frank, living in Elgin; Charles, living in Genoa township, De Kalb county; and Candice, living in Sycamore, and who married a Mr. Gillett.
Charles W. Watson was the only child of Benjamin F. and Helen Watson. He was born at Allen's Grove, Wisconsin, February 26, 1860, and was reared in Hampshire township, Kane county, Illinois. His education was obtained in the schools of that township, and at Madison, Wisconsin, and Sycamore, Illinois. At the age of seventeen, he commenced to learn the trade of a machinist and engineer in Chicago, and after working for the City railway two years, he entered the employ of the Illinois Central railroad, remaining thirteen years, becoming one of its most trusted engineers. He resigned that position in 1894, and with his mother moved back to the farm in order that she might care for her aged father. He is now conducting a general and dairy farm, and being an expert machinist, has a shop on his place, doing his own repairing, which is, in fact, better than it could be done at most regular repair shops. Mr. Watson was married in Chicago, January 1, 1896, to Miss Carrie Smith, a native of Galesburg, Illinois, but reared in Chicago, and a daughter of Frederick L. Smith, Jr., a native of Mercersburg, Franklin county, Pennsylvania, born September 25, 1825, and who died August 13, 1893. He was the son of Frederick L. Smith, Sr., and Rebecca (Shafer) Smith, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. Frederick L. Smith, Jr., who was a commercial traveler for a wholesale drug house in Chicago, married Anna Benton, born at Quincy, Illinois, and a daughter of Erastus and Caroline (Cook) Benton, who were from Hartford, Connecticut.
To our subject and wife one child has been born, Charles Frederick, born December 19, 1897. While engaged in railroading, Mr. Watson was a member of the Fireman's Brotherhood, and also of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers. In politics he is a Republican, and fraternally is a member of the Knights of Pythias.
ALFONSO A. SMITH, who resides at 119 North Root street, Aurora, Illinois, has held a responsible position in the shops of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company for more than twenty-five years. He was born in Burlington, Illinois, March 31, 1852. He is an adopted son of U. M. Smith, who was born on Caldwell's Manor, Canada, November 23, 1818, and who died in March, 1897, but who was an early settler of Kane county, emigrating from Pennsylvania. His own father, James Shanks, was of Scotch parentage, and was also an early settler of Illinois. Shortly after the discovery of gold in California he made a trip to that new Eldorado, and died on the homeward voyage.
Our subject grew to manhood in Kane county, and received his education in the public schools of Aurora. In early life he learned the carpenter's trade and for ten years was a journeyman in the carpenter shops of the Burlington road, and since 1881 has been foreman of a gang of workmen, and is now one of the oldest employes here of that road.
Mr. Smith was married May 17, 1874, in Aurora, to Miss Laura Bradshaw, a native of Canada, born and reared in Prince Edwards county, and a daughter of James Bradshaw, who located in Aurora in 1885, where his death occurred in 1897. His wife survived him, dying March 2, 1898. By this union are four children-Pearl, Pansy, Adra and Gladys. The first named is an artist in water colors and oils, and has developed a decided talent for painting and drawing.
Politically, Mr. Smith is a Republican, and has advocated the principles of that party since attaining his majority, and has at all times voted his party's ticket. Fraternally he is an Odd Fellow, and has served in nearly every official capacity in his lodge. He is also a member of the Home Forum. While not members, Mr. and Mrs. Smith are attendants of the Methodist Episcopal church. They reside in a neat and comfortable home on Root street, which is ever open for the reception of their many friends. A lifelong resident of Kane county, Mr. Smith has gone in and out among the people, doing the work at hand cheerfully and well, and not only enjoys the respect and confidence of the community in which he lives, but the great company in whose employment he has so long been, which is attested by his years of faithful service.
GEORGE BYRON REED, engaged in farming on section 32, Plato township, was born near Wayne, Du Page county, Illinois, January 22, 1838. He grew to manhood on his father's farm and attended district schools during the winter terms until twenty-one years of age. He remained at home until August, 1862, when he enlisted in Company F, One Hundred and Fifth Regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry, enlisting at Wheaton, from which place he was sent to Dixon, Illinois, thence, to Chicago, where the regiment remained one week. From there it was sent to Louisville, Kentucky, from which place it marched to Tunnel Hill, near Nashville. With the regiment he participated in the battle of Resaca, in the Atlantic campaign, and with Sherman on his march to the sea. While on the way north, at Milledge, North Carolina, he first heard of the surrender of Lee. He was present at the surrender of Johnston, and was in a grand review at Washington. With his regiment he was mustered out at Washington, and was discharged at Chicago, June 15, 1865. Returning home he rented a farm some eight or ten years, and then purchased some two hundred and fifteen acres, lying in Campton township, which four years later he sold, and then purchased his present farm of two hundred and forty-two acres, which lies partly in Plato and Campton townships.
George W. Reed, the father of our subject, was born in Franklin county, Vermont, February 22, 1806, and died in Du Page county, Illinois, February 22, 1888. He lived in Vermont until he was twenty-five or thirty years old, and after marriage emigrated to Ohio, where he lived two years. He then came west to Chicago, and from there to Du Page county, settling near Wayne, where he took up one hundred and sixty acres. His father, Nathaniel Reed, was born in Massachusetts, and was the son of Horace Reed, a soldier of the Revolutionary war. George W. Reed married Miss Julia Ellenwood, a native of Vermont, born in 1816, by whom he had eight children, as follows: Rodney H., deceased; George Byron, our subject; William Thomas, who lives in West Chicago; Emily A., wife of Robert Benjamin, residing near West Chicago; Eldon, deceased; Julia, wife of James Campbell, a hardware merchant; Charles, living on the old homestead; and Ida May, who married Weldford Wagner, of West Chicago.
On the 19th of February, 1873, our subject was united in marriage with Miss Eliza A. Kline, born in the township of Wayne, Du Page county, and daughter of John and Clarrissa (Champion) Kline, natives of New York state. By this union three children have been born: Frank W., in charge of the store owned by his father at Lily Lake, Kane county; Mertie M. and Ray Harrison.
Mr. Reed was for some years a member of the South Chicago post, G. A. R. In politics he is a Republican, and for fifteen years served as school director, always taking a commendable interest in educational matters. His fine farm, which is under a high state of cultivation, is devoted chiefly to grain and dairy purposes. The dwelling house is a substantial structure, and there is a beautiful grove of evergreens about the place. Mr. Reed is regarded as one of the most enterprising business men in Plato township, and his fine property has been accumulated by his own exertions.
HIRAM LASHER, a retired farmer, living on section 5, Big Rock township, has been a resident of Kane county since 1855. He was born in Columbia county, New York, November 8, 1815. His father, George G. Lasher, was also a native of that county. The family are of German ancestry, and were among the pioneers of Columbia county. In that county George G. Lasher grew to manhood and married Elizabeth Kiselbergh, also a native of Columbia county. After their marriage he engaged in farming in Columbia county for some years, and later removed to Rensselaer county, New York, and there spent the remainder of his life, dying in 1872, at the age of eighty-two years. His wife preceded him many years, dying in 1848.
Hiram Lasher grew to manhood in Columbia county, and during his boyhood and youth had the opportunity each winter of attending the public schools. During the remainder of the year he assisted his father in farm work. When a young man he accompanied his parents to Rensselaer county, and remained with them until thirty years old. He was married in Rensselaer county, July 4, 1846, to Miss Fannie Maria Williams, born in Warren county. New York, and a daughter of W. W. Williams, also a native of New York, but whose parents were from Connecticut.
After his marriage Mr. Lasher worked his father's farm on shares for two years, and after the death of the mother rented the farm for six years. In 1855 he came to Kane county, Illinois, and located in Kaneville township, where he purchased a farm of ninety acres, eighty acres of which had been broken and some improvements made on the place. He there resided for eighteen years, during which time he made many valuable improvements, including the building of a barn and other outbuildings. Selling that farm at an advance over the original purchase price, he bought the farm where he now resides, on section 5, Big Rock township, consisting of one hundred and forty-eight acres, and which lies partly in Kaneville township. The farm was an improved one at the time of his purchase, but he has since made other improvements, tiling the place, erecting a good barn, and building cribs and sheds for the storing of grain and the shelter of stock.
Mr. and Mrs. Lasher became the parents of two children. Sarah Olivia is now the wife of J. H. Meade, a farmer of Kaneville township. Melvin grew to manhood, was educated in the common schools of Kaneville and Big Rock townships, and later married Harriet Bailey, a native of Peoria county, Illinois, but who grew to womanhood in Kane county. They have three children: Fannie, Alice and Ida, who are students of the home schools.
Mrs. Hiram Lasher
After a happy married life of fifty-two years, Mrs. Lasher died May 2, 1898, and was laid to rest in the Kaneville cemetery. Her death was mourned by a large circle of friends in Big Rock and Kaneville town-ships. Politically Mr. Lasher has been a Republican since the organization of the party, but cast his first presidential ballot for Martin Van Buren, after which he supported the Whig party until it ceased to exist. A residence of forty-three years in Kaneville and Big Rock townships has made for Mr. Lasher many warm friends, by whom he is held in the highest esteem. He is a man of upright character and exemplary habits, and this sketch of him will be read by many friends.
WILLIAM W. EVANS, a well-known publisher of maps and directories living at No. 260 Villa street, Elgin, was born in Quebec, Canada, February 13, 1839, a son of James and Mary (Carpenter) Evans. The father, a native of county Galway, Ireland, served for some time as lieutenant in the British army, and as a retired officer he received half pay for forty years, from the time Napoleon was sent to St. Helena. After his emigration to Canada he married Mary Carpenter, who was born in Pennsylvania, of English and German descent, but was reared in Canada. There the father died in 1859, when in his sixty-fifth year, and the mother passed away April 8, 1888, aged eighty-seven years. Both were earnest, consistent Christians, members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and Mr. Evans was a local preacher for that denomination, in which capacity he was known throughout the greater part of the province of Ontario.
Of the twelve children born to this worthy couple, seven are still living, namely: Frances, wife of Richard Wood, of Toronto, Canada; Louisa, widow of William G. Stephens, and also a resident of Toronto; Elizabeth, wife of Henry L. Boss, of Caro, Michigan; James C, a resident of East Saginaw, Michigan; Henry T., an editor living in Texas; William W., of this sketch; and Robert F., who is a clerk in the auditor's office of the Michigan Central railroad at Detroit, Michigan.
William W. Evans commenced his education under the able direction of his father, who was a classical scholar and a teacher for many years. Subsequently he attended the high school at Simcoe, Canada, where he studied the languages and higher mathematics. During early life he learned the printer's trade, at which he worked in many places until finally locating in the Canadian oil regions, where oil was first discovered during our Civil war. Here he was employed on "The Oil Springs Chronicle," the first paper of the kind published in Canada, and subsequently he purchased the paper, remaining there two years. On selling out he removed to Watertown, New York, in 1865, where he worked on a daily paper for a year and a half, and then entered the service of Hamilton Child, a directory publisher at Syracuse, acting as compiler and superintendent for ten years, during which time he assisted in the publication of directories of forty-two counties in New York and three in Pennsylvania. On leaving that firm he returned to the province of Ontario. Canada, where, on his own account, he published directories of many counties and some cities, remaining there for ten years and meeting with good success in the undertaking. In 1888 he came to Elgin and got out the first gazetteer and directory of Kane county, and since then has compiled a second edition and also two editions of the city directory for the publishers, Lowrie & Black. Our subject has also published a map of Kane county.
In Watertown, New York, Mr. Evans was married to Miss Nellie Waters, of Loughborough, Canada, a daughter of Bulkley Waters, a farmer and tanner of that country. Three children bless this union, namely: Hamilton, a machinist, of Elgin; and Eva and Dora, who are both employed in the watch factory at this place. The parents and children are all members of the First Methodist Episcopal church of Elgin, -and are the center of a large circle of friends and acquaintances. Politically Mr. Evans is in sympathy with the Republican party.
DANIEL B. MOORE - This age is not wholly utilitarian. On all sides we see some earnest souls laboring devotedly to bring about a recognition of some higher principle in life than-selfish greed, and stimulating in the hearts of others a desire for spiritual progress. The friends of Mr. Moore will see in his years of faithful work in all forms of religious endeavor a source of present good to the community, and long after he has entered into his final rest his influence will continue in everlasting circles.
Mr. Moore, who is now a highly respected citizen of St. Charles, Illinois, was born January 7, 1829, in the town of Leroy, Genesee county, New York, and belongs to a family that was established in New Jersey at a very early day in the history of this country. His grandfather, John Moore, was a native of that state, and successfully engaged in the occupation of weaving throughout his active business life. He was a well-educated man, and held numerous public positions of honor and trust.
John C. Moore, our subject's father, was born in New Jersey, in 1796, and about 1804 removed with his father to Seneca county, New York, becoming a pioneer of that region, where, in the midst of the wilderness, he grew to manhood. There he was married to Elizabeth Bovee, who was born on the Mohawk river, in Schoharie county, New York. He was also a weaver by trade, and after following that occupation in Seneca county for some years, he removed to Genesee county, locating on a farm. Subsequently he lived for a time in Monroe, Niagara and Livingston counties, but returned to Genesee county, where he died in January, 1877. His wife, who survived him for some time, passed away at the age of seventy-eight years, and her remains were interred by his side.
All of the children born to this worthy couple reached man and womanhood. Maria is the wife of Edwin Ward, of Batavia, New York. Rachel Ann married William Adkins, and died in Michigan. Catherine is the widow of Abram Bovee, and resides in Monroe county, New York. Daniel B. is next in order of birth. Jane first married Matthew Spitzer, and after his death wedded Horace Freer, and died in Portage, New York. Sarah married Alexander Culverson, and some years later came to St. Charles, Illinois, where her death occurred. Jacob enlisted in the Ninth New York Artillery during the Civil war, but was afterward transferred to the infantry, and was killed at the battle of Winchester, giving his life in defense of the Union. Matthew, who was also one of the boys in blue during the Rebellion, now resides on the old home farm in Genesee county, New York. Mary E. is the widow of James Cooper, who was killed in a railroad accident at Batavia, New York, in August, 1897.
On the old homestead in Genesee county, New York, Daniel B. Moore passed his boyhood and youth, acquiring his elementary education in the common and union schools of that section. In early life he learned the blacksmith's trade, serving four and a half years' apprenticeship, and then worked at the trade for a time, saving his wages to pay his expenses while attending Oberlin College of Ohio, where he completed his literary training.
In 1853 Mr. Moore went to Delavan, Walworth county, Wisconsin, where he taught school, and also worked at his trade for a short time. In Elkhorn, that state, he was married November 29, 1853, to Miss Harriet Jane Culverson, who was born in Vermont, but was principally reared and educated in Delavan, Wisconsin. Her father, James Culverson, was one of the pioneers of that state. In 1854 Mr. Moore located on a farm, and though he engaged in agricultural pursuits through the summer season, he taught school during the winter months. Removing to Iowa, in 1855, he bought a farm in Fayette county, but at the end of a year sold his place and returned to Wisconsin, living in Walworth county until coming to St. Charles, Illinois, in November, 1862. Here he conducted a blacksmith shop from 1863 until 1886. His first wife died in-St. Charles in 1872, and of the six children born to them, two died in childhood. In order of birth they are as follows: Alice passed away at the age of eight years; James is a business man of Elgin; Charles is engaged in business in Aurora; Edwin died in childhood; Carrie J. is engaged in the millinery business in Chicago; and Mary E. is the wife of James H. Furman, who holds a responsible business position in Chicago.
Mr. Moore was again married in St. Charles, April 4, 1889, his second union being with Mrs. Kate A. Chapman, a native of New York City, and a daughter of James P. Furnald, an honored pioneer of St. Charles, who removed here from Genesee county, New York. By occupation he was a merchant tailor. From St. Charles he removed to Chillicothe, Missouri, where he lived some years, after which he returned to St. Charles, and here died at the age of sixty-eight years. He was a stanch Republican in politics and was a faithful member of the Congregational church.
In 1887 Mr. Moore removed to Chicago, but after a residence there of one year, he returned to St. Charles, buying back his old business. A year later, however, he again sold, and was engaged in business for some time in Chicago, though he continued to reside in St. Charles. He subsequently conducted a grocery store for two or three years in the former city, and on disposing of that he embarked in the tea and coffee business, during all this time continuing to reside in St. Charles. When he sold the latter store he again engaged in blacksmithing for two or three years in Chicago, and made his home in that city, but in April, 1896, he returned to St. Charles, where he has since lived. After disposing of his blacksmith shop in Chicago, he engaged in the tea and coffee business, in which business he is still engaged. Upright and reliable in all things, he has gained the confidence and respect of all with whom he has come in contact either in business or social life, and through his own industry, enterprise and good management has accumulated a comfortable competence.
Mr. Moore's father was first an old-line Whig in politics, later was a stanch Abolitionist and afterward a Republican. Our subject also supported the Abolition party on attaining his majority, voting for John P. Hale, and in 1856 he cast his ballot for John C. Fremont, since which time he has been a pronounced Republican. Being a warm friend of our public school system, he most efficiently served as a member of the school board for a number of years, and for four years he also served as trustee of St. Charles before the incorporation of the city and assisted in changing it from a village, laying out the wards as they stand to-day. He was a candidate on the temperance ticket, and although he never solicited a vote, he received a large majority at each election.
During his youth Mr. Moore joined the Congregational church in New York, was a member of the old Plymouth church at Oberlin, Ohio, while attending college, and afterward belonged to the church in Delavan, Wisconsin. In 1863 he became identified with the church in St. Charles, and four years later was chosen deacon, which office he filled continuously until 1887. On his removal to Chicago he united with the Union Park church, and for some time was a teacher in that Sunday-school and in the Oakley Avenue mission. On his return to St. Charles he was again elected deacon of the congregation there, and when he again removed to Chicago he was chosen deacon of the Warren Avenue Congregational church, of which he became a member. He was also a teacher in the Sunday-school and chairman of the relief committee. Since his return to St. Charles in 1896 he has been re-elected deacon, and is still serving in that capacity, being one of the most faithful and untiring workers in the church there. Since a child he has taken great interest in the Sabbath-school, was a teacher in Oberlin, superintendent of surrounding schools, and also superintendent of a Sabbath-school in Iowa while living there. For nineteen years, at different times, he has filled the same office in St. Charles. An earnest, conscientious Christian gentleman, charitable and benevolent, the world is certainly better for his having lived.
JAMES D. McDONALD is one of the best farmers of Plato township, and resides upon section 36, on the farm known as the Otter Creek farm. He was born on a farm in Elgin township February 26, 1851, and is the son of John and Rebecca (Denmark) McDonald, the former a native of Scotland and the latter of England, of whom further mention is made in the sketch of William Wallace McDonald. Until he was sixteen years of age he attended the district schools a portion of each year, but confesses at that time he had no love for the school room, and frequently played truant, much to his present sorrow. At the age of nineteen he began working in the creamery at East Plato, but after the death of his father he took charge of the home farm for his mother until he attained his majority. She then gave him a team of horses and a wagon. He then worked one year for his mother, for which he received three hundred dollars in money, with which to commence life for himself.
For several years after leaving the parental roof Mr. McDonald rented land, which he cultivated with some success, but in 1879, in partnership with his brother, William Wallace, he bought fifty acres of land, which was part of his father's first purchase in Kane county, and built a creamery. This they operated until 1885, when they sold out. Four years previously, however, our subject purchased his present farm of four hundred and ten acres; lying in section 36, Plato township, and section 1, Campton township. Until 1890 he ran a dairy farm, but has now a stock farm, raising principally Holstein cattle. For many years he was engaged in raising horses, continuing in that business until prices got too low to raise at a profit. During a part of the years 1897-8 he lived in Elgin, that his children might have the benefits of its public schools, but in the spring of 1898 he returned to the farm.
Mr. McDonald was married in Geneva, Kane county, to Miss Frances Sovereign, a daughter of George P. and Agnes (Windsor) Sovereign, the former a native of Canada and the latter of England. The latter, who was born May 27, 1820, was a daughter of George Windsor, who came to America in 1834. George P. Sovereign, who was a natural general mechanic, and had at various times followed the occupations of a carpenter, painter and wagon-maker, was a son of Richard and Betsy (Plumber) Sovereign. His father served in the war of 1812. They were the parents of eight children - Mary A., Harriet E., Frances, Ella E., George, Harriet, Myra and Daniel. Of this number, Harriet E. died in early childhood, and there was one who died in infancy. To our subject and wife four children have been born - Walter Alton, who married Mina Grady, by whom he has one child, Ralph W., is now living on a farm in Plato township; Lily Luella, deceased; James Elmer, who is assisting his father in the cultivation of the home farm; and John P., a student in the schools of Elgin.
Politically Mr. McDonald is a Republican, and has served in various offices, including those of road overseer, school director and trustee. His farm is one of the finest in the county, well drained and watered, good dwelling, and good barns and other outbuildings. In the yard are many fine old trees, which also line the roadside in front of his residence. He is a genial, whole-souled man, and a general favorite throughout the community in which he resides.
HORACE GILBERT was for many years an honored citizen of Aurora, and one of its most active, enterprising business men. He was born in Otsego county, New York, August 1, 1819. His parents were natives of Connecticut. His father was by occupation a farmer and blacksmith, and for a time conducted a general store, in connection with his other business. Religiously he was a Congregationalist, and for years was a deacon in that church. He was quite influential in the community in which he resided, and was well and favorably known throughout the county. His wife, also a member of the Congregational church, was a most worthy woman, and for many years was an invalid. They never came west except on a visit.
The subject of this sketch was fourth in a family of nine children, Of whom all are deceased save three sisters: Adaline, wife of Clark Smith, residing in New York; Caroline, an honored resident of Aurora; and Elizabeth, wife of Charles Hyde, residing in New York. Of the sons, William was a clothier. His son Doctor Rufus, was a surgeon in the late war, and was the inventor of the elevated railway in New York. Another son of William was a noted physician, an eye and ear specialist. Another of his sons, William, was a tobacconist in New York. His second son, Harry, was a farmer by occupation, and came west, dying at Paw Paw, Lee county, Illinois. Jay also came west and settled in Wayne county, Illinois, on a farm. Delos, was a druggist in New York state.
The subject of this sketch was reared on a farm, and as soon as able to run around, was usefully employed, his father being an extensive dairyman. His education was obtained in the district schools of his native state. In 1851 he came west, and spent a year on .a farm, and then married Miss Minerva Fitch, daughter of the late Ira Fitch, who built the Evans hotel and other large buildings in Aurora, and was quite a successful business man. Soon after his marriage, Mr. Gilbert came to Aurora, formed a partnership with his father-in-law, and engaged in the harness trade on Broadway, between Fox and Main streets, continuing there for many years. They were burned out at one time, and also lost much by the sudden rise of Fox river. They did a large business in buying hides, which at one time during a freshet, went down the river incurring great loss. Later Mr. Gilbert went across the river and engaged in the same business on the site of the present Merchants' Bank. His partner was John Kemp, with whom he continued for perhaps thirty-five years, and doing a very extensive business. Their goods went to many of the states of the union, and were in great demand before and during the war. He remained in the harness trade, until his health began to fail, when he retired and gave his time and attention to his other property.
To Horace and Minerva Gilbert, two children were born, both of whom died in infancy. The mother passed away about 1857. She was a consistent member of the Congregational church and died in the faith. On the 3rd of January, 1871, Mr. Gilbert was again married, his second union being with Miss Mary Spalding, daughter of the late Joseph A. and Julia A. (West) Spalding, the former a native of Windsor county, Vermont, and the latter of Strafford, Orange county, same state. She was a cousin of Justin Morrill, the oldest senator, and the longest continually in the office, of any person in the United States senate. They were from the same town, Strafford, Orange county, Vermont.
Joseph A. Spalding came to Kane county in 1849, and settled on a farm near Elgin. His children were all born in Vermont, and came west in their childhood. On the farm near Elgin they grew to mature years. In 1861, he moved with his family to Aurora, and engaged in teaming and farming on land which he had leased just south of the city. In Vermont, Mr. Spalding was an influential man, having served as captain of the militia and justice of the peace. He was a devout member and at times held the office of steward, class leader and trustee, in the Methodist Episcopal church, having a wide and excellent influence, which was always effectual in the right direction. His death occurred in 1884, at the age of eighty-four years. His wife, who was also a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, died in 1878, at the age of seventy years. Of their eight children, Charles West, who is a well educated man, with experience as editor of both papers and magazines, now resides in Florida; Jane Amelia, who married Asa Merrill, an early settler of Elgin, and both are now deceased, she dying August 6, 1878, at the age of forty-four years; Hannah A. is the wife of Frank Besse, a soldier of the late war, and they now reside in Osage City, Kansas; Mercy B.., died in 1841, at the age of four years; Mary A., widow of our subject; Joseph Albert, a commercial traveler, residing in Lawrence, Kansas; Sarah E., who first married Fred James, of Aurora, and after his death, married Herman Tetzlaff, of Clinton, Iowa; Henry U., a railroad engineer, at Tacoma, Washington; and Wilber Fisk, connected with the State street railway of Chicago, residing in Englewood, Illinois.
Three children were born to Horace and Mary A. Gilbert, as follows: Jennie, wife of Hartwell Staples, a native of Boston, now doing business in Chicago, but they reside with Mrs. Gilbert in Aurora. They have one child, a daughter, Jane Gilbert; Mary Elizabeth, wife of William Hills, in the express business at Galesburg, Illinois, and Edna Morrill, who resides at home. Mrs. Gilbert is a member of the Congregational- church, is vice president of the Ladies' Foreign Missionary Society of the church, and is in every way a most worthy lady of pleasing presence, good culture and Christian character.
Mr. Gilbert was a thorough business man, one who was willing to do all in his power to build up the manufacturing and other interests of this city. He did much in securing the Silver Plate Manufactory in Aurora, and for several years gave it his best attention. He was very progressive and modern in his views, his great delight being in seeing all industries of the city in a prosperous condition. When he came to Aurora, in the early '50s, he bought the place where his wife's pleasant home is now located, and which was then at the edge of the city limits, a large wheat field covering that part of the city which is now located on the south. The city now extends far beyond the boundaries of the wheat field. Mr. Gilbert was much of a home man, preferring home to any other place. He was a wonderfully kind man, as is shown by the following incident: A man had borrowed from him a sum of money, for which he gave as security a mortgage on his farm. The time for payment and foreclosure had arrived, and the man, feeling his inability to pay, was for relinquishing and giving up the farm. Mr. Gilbert would not hear to this, and told him to hold on another year. The next year was no better and he was determined to give up, but through hard persuasion he was induced to try another year, when fortune turned in his favor and he paid off the mortgage, and was ever afterwards thankful to Mr. Gilbert for his kindness and patience. This was but one of many incidents that might be related of how he strove to help others, especially those he considered honest and were trying to help themselves. Although not a member of any church, he was strict to observe the Sabbath day, and showed a preference for the Congregational church. His death, which occurred July 9, 1894, was mourned alike by family and many friends, who esteemed him for his true worth and excellent character.
LEWIS C. CLYNE.
Success in any line of occupation, in any avenue of business, is not a matter of spontaneity, but is a legitimate offspring of the proper use of the means at hand, the improvement of opportunity, and the exercise of the highest functions made possible in any case. To trace the history of a successful life, be it in the electrical world of business, in which competition is rife; in the intellectual field, where devotees open up the wider realms of knowledge; in a public sphere, where is directed the course of government, and the policies formed that sway nations; or in the calm and peaceful pursuits which have to do with the source of all supplies, must ever prove possible and satisfying indulgence, for the history of an individual is the history of a nation; the history of a nation the history of a world. The subject of this sketch has made a success, although his life has not been under the most favorable circumstances.
Lewis C. Clyne was born in county Longford, Ireland, March 22, 1862, and is the son of Thomas and Ann (Martin) Clyne, both natives of Ireland, and who were the parents of fourteen children, of whom our subject is the youngest. He remained in his native country until seventeen years of age, and there received his education in the common schools.
With that laudable desire to better his condition in life, he came to the United States, coming direct to Maple Park, Illinois, where for four years, he clerked in the general store of his brother, during which time he had a good business training. In 1884, he engaged in business for himself, in the general mercantile trade, in which he has since continued, and in which he has been very successful. His abilities were soon recognized by his fellow citizens, and in 1885 he was elected a member of the village board, and by reelection has continued until the present time. He has served as township treasurer for eight years, and in 1892 was elected supervisor of his township, and in that office has since continued to serve. In 1893 he was appointed postmaster of Maple Park, and filled that position for four years, to the satisfaction of all the patrons of the office.
On the 18th of February, 1890, Mr. Clyne was united in marriage with Miss Hannah Keenan, a native of Kane county, and to them have been born two children, Kathleen and Rose. The parents are members of the Catholic church, and politics he is an ardent Democrat. Although the township is largely Republican, his popularity has been such as to give him the election whenever nominated for any office. Fraternally he is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America.
FRANKLIN WEBSTER, proprietor of the leading livery stable of Elgin, Illinois, is one of the native sons of Kane county, born in Geneva, September 12, 1849, and is a worthy representative of one of its honored pioneer families. His father, William Gaylord Webster, was born at Westmoreland, Oneida county, New York, April 6, 1811, a son of Gaylord and Lucy (Mc-Moran) Webster, who were natives of Connecticut, and were farming people.
William G. Webster was among the first settlers of Kane county, Illinois, coming here in 1840 and locating on a farm of one hundred and sixty acres at Nelson's Grove, near Bald Mound, to the improvement and cultivation of which he devoted his energies for some years. On selling out he removed to Geneva, where he opened the Webster Tavern, which he successfully conducted until it was destroyed by fire in 1865. During a part of this time he carried the mail from the depot to the post office and also carried on a livery business, being thus engaged at the time of his death, which occurred April 6, 1887. Prior to engaging in the livery business he conducted a grocery store for a time, buying his stock at St.. Louis, and -hauling it across the country from Lyons, Iowa. At one time he served as deputy sheriff of Kane county, and as a stalwart Republican, he took quite an active interest in political affairs. He was six feet in height, well built, and was a man who commanded the respect and esteem of all with whom he came in contact.
In 1841 William G. Webster was united in marriage with Miss Margaret E. Pierce, who was born January 6, 1811, in Vermont, of which state her parents, Dr. Joseph K. and Hannah (Kenyon) Pierce, were also natives. From there they removed to Jefferson county, New York, and in 1839, with their family of four children, they emigrated to Kane county, Illinois, each taking up claims and locating at Nelson's Grove and Bald Mound. The children were Eveline, who married Samuel Wood; Margaret E., mother of our subject; George and Kenyon. In early life Mrs. Webster was a successful teacher and taught the first school ever conducted in Geneva. She was a lady of culture and refinement and was a member of the Episcopal church. She departed this life at Geneva, April 14, 1887. Her children were as follows: Henry died at Geneva when about thirty-eight years of age. Elizabeth is the widow of T. W. Herrington, who died in Aurora in 1868, and she now lives at Geneva on the lot where the first house was built at that place, and where a spring is constantly flowing. Mary E. is also a resident of Geneva. Franklin, of this sketch, completes the family.
The early life of our subject was spent at Geneva, attending the public schools and assisting his father. On starting out in life for himself he was employed as clerk in a grocery store in Chicago at the corner of Canal and Judd streets for about six months during the year 1864. He then returned home and the following winter attended school at Batavia. The next two years he again worked for his father, and during the winters of 1867 and 1868 he pursued his studies in the Jennings Seminary of Aurora, where his literary education was completed. Accepting a clerkship in a grocery store at that place, he remained there for three years and a half, or until 1871, when he and his brother Henry purchased his father's livery business, which they successfully conducted for four years. After selling his interest to his brother, Franklin Webster came to Elgin in April, 1882, and embarked in the same business on Milwaukee street. Two years later he built stables on Grove avenue, where he continued in business until 1893, when he removed to his present location on Chicago street. His stables are supplied with good horses and a fine line of vehicles for the accommodation of his large patronage, and he is doing a profitable business, which is certainly well deserved.
On the 27th of September, 1882, Mr. Webster was united in marriage with Miss Marian E. Conklin, a native of Kane county, and a daughter of William G. and Sarah A. (Ingersol) Conklin. At an early day her parents came from Buffalo, New York, to Kane county, and the father erected the first mill at St. Charles, operating it for many years. He was a veteran of both the Mexican and Civil wars, and in the latter rose to the rank of major, serving as such in the Eighth Illinois Cavalry. He was one. of the most distinguished and honored citizens of St. Charles, where he died in 1895. At that place his widow is still living.
Politically Mr. Webster is a stanch Republican, and fraternally is an honored member of Jerusalem Temple lodge, No. 90, A. F. & A. M., and Aurora chapter, No. 22, R. A. M., both of Aurora; Bethel commandery, No. 36, K. T., of Elgin; and Silver Leaf camp, No. 60, M. W. A. Being a public-spirited, enterprising citizen, he most efficiently served as alderman from the Fourth ward of Elgin in 1895-6. With the Methodist Episcopal church his wife holds membership.
GEORGE ALEXANDER, who is one of the oldest conductors on the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy railroad, has been in the employ of the company for forty-two years. He resides with his family at No. 242 New York street, Aurora, Illinois. He is a native of Massachusetts, born in Franklin county, February 15, 1827, and is the son of Fordyce Alexander, also a native of Massachusetts, born in the town of Sunderland, in 1796. The paternal grandfather, Elisha Alexander, was a native of Massachusetts. He moved to Irving, Franklin county, from Sunderland, which was afterwards his home. The Alexanders are of Scotch descent, and were among the very early settlers of New England.
Fordyce Alexander grew to manhood in his native state, and there married Thankful Whitehead, also a native of Massachusetts, born in Phillipston, Worcester county. Her father, Gadd Whitehead, was likewise a native of the Bay state. Fordyce Alexander was for many years engaged in merchandising, in his native state, and was a manufacturer and dealer in lumber, and also engaged in agricultural pursuits. Later he moved to Wrightsville, Warren county, Pennsylvania, and there engaged in lumbering during the remainder of his life, dying in 1860, at the age of sixty-four years. His wife survived him many years, dying in 1882, at the residence of a daughter in Boston, Massachusetts, at the age of eighty-three years. Of their family of nine children, all grew to mature years, save one daughter who died in early childhood. Three sons yet survive - James H., a business man residing in Los Angeles, California; Elisha M., with the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company, residing in Aurora; and George our subject.
George Alexander grew to manhood in his native town and county, where he received his education in the common schools. He remained with his father until twenty-one years of age, assisting him in the store, and on the farm. He commenced railroading in Massachusetts, when a young man, and in 1851 went to New York, where he engaged with the New York & Erie Railroad Company, and assisted in the construction of the telegraph line of the western division. He remained there about one year, then came west to Detroit, Michigan, where for one year he engaged in the wholesale notion business selling to the trade from a wagon. He then went to St. Louis, where he was engaged in construction work on the Missouri Pacific road, for about eight months, assisting in grading and laying the first thirty-five miles of track. In 1854, he returned to Massachusetts, and there engaged with the Boston & Albany railroad, where he remained about a year, and in 1855 came to Chicago, and commenced work for the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company, at breaking on a freight train. In the fall of the same year, he was promoted to conductor on the freight train, and ran a freight and construction train until 1861. He then took a passenger train from Mendota to Chicago, continuing on that run about eight months, and was then given a through train from Chicago to Burlington. He continued on that run until the summer of 1873, when he was made train master at Chicago, where he resided until the following season. In June, 1874, was transferred to Aurora, where he was trainmaster, in charge of the Chicago division, until 1878, when he was made master of transportation. Later he was appointed division superintendent, a position that he held until 1888, when he was transferred to the claim department, settling all classes of claims against the road, which position he held for three years. He then returned to the road and took charge of a passenger train from Aurora to Streator.
Mr. Alexander was married in Aurora in January, 1859, to Miss Mattie Baldwin, a native of Indiana, where she was reared and educated, and a daughter of Pollard Baldwin, who was a native of Windsor, Vermont, and who removed from that state to Ohio, where he married, and later moved to Indiana, locating in Warren county, and from thence to Montgomery county, where his death occurred. By this union were three children, all of whom died in infancy. After their marriage, Mr. Alexander built a residence in Aurora, which he sold on his removal to Chicago. On returning to Aurora, he rented for a year, then bought the neat and substantial residence where he now resides on New York street.
Politically, Mr. Alexander is a Republican, though of late years he has been independent, supporting the best men regardless of party. Fraternally, he is a member of Jerusalem Temple lodge, No. 90, F. & A. M., with which he united in 1859. He is also a member of the Aurora City Club, a social organization. On coming to Aurora in 1855, he found but few miles of railroad in the state, single track extending from
Chicago to Mendota only was complete. Today there is a complete network of roads extending through every part of the state, and it requires hundreds of telegraph wires to transact the business of the country. As a railroad man he has done his part in the development of the state. Wherever known he is held in high esteem, and has always been popular on the road.
JAMES F. BELL resides upon section 30, Hampshire township, where he is engaged in dairy farming. He was born in Batavia, New York, January 22, 1830, and is the son of Charles Bell, a native of Vermont, born October 8, 1794, and who well remembered Washington's funeral. After living for a time in Batavia, New York, Charles Bell removed with his family to Java, and later to Aurora, in the same state. In 1838 he moved to Michigan and settled in the town of Redford, Wayne county, where he lived until 1865. For a time he was a sailor on the lakes, and while at a point of bay near Toledo he was stabbed by an Indian. The weather was hot, and before medical aid could be secured at Detroit, gangrene set in and it became necessary to amputate the leg. While yet living in New York he taught school for a time. Before leaving the state he learned the tailor's trade, at which he worked in his native state and in Wayne county, Michigan. During the war of 1812, he gave his services to his country. At the commencement of the war he and his father were in rafting on the St. Lawrence, and he was pressed by the British to take a raft over the rapids, and he ran it on the American side of the river after passing the rapids, into the hands of the Americans. After being held about twelve days, he escaped and joined the Vermont volunteers. Charles Bell was the son of Ralph Rudolphus Wheelock and Desire (Reynolds) Bell, both of whom were natives of Vermont, and the father of Irish descent.
At Aurora, New York, our subject began his education in the public schools, and, after his arrival in Michigan, continued to attend school until eighteen years of age, when he secured a position in a rake factory, where wooden hay rakes were manufactured. After working four years in the factory he worked as a farm hand and at anything his hand found to do until 1854. On the 14th of February, of that year, he left home for California, sailing from New York February 20, on the steamer Star of the West, which was afterward made famous in trying to carry provisions to Fort Sumter before hostilities commenced between the states. After crossing Nicaraugua, from Greytown, he sailed from San Juan to San Francisco, on the steamer Brother Jonathan, arriving about April 10. On the trip a boiler blew out, which necessitated slow speed. The vessel was soon afterward condemned for sea duty, and was confined to coast trade. On arriving in California Mr. Bell went into the mines, sometimes making one hundred and fifty dollars a day, and sometimes making no more in one hundred and fifty days. For four years he was at Murphy's Camp and Gaston Hill, near Cave City. Having enough of California, he returned home by way of the Isthmus of Panama, leaving Aspinwall in the steamer Illinois, which was wrecked on the north coast of Cuba, twelve hours' run from Havana. Our subject here lost everything. The vessel, however, was got off the reef, repaired and reached New York September 8, 1858. On his way west he stopped at Niagara, and a few days later reached his home in Wayne county. He then worked on farms in Wayne county until he came to Kane county, Illinois, in April, 1865. On arriving here he worked for his uncle, Henry G. Bell, for a time, and then rented farms for six years, in 1871 he bought his present farm of forty acres, and is now engaged in dairy farming, manufacturing his own butter.
Mr. Bell has been twice married, his first union being with Mrs. Mary McIogan, nee Harme, a native of Sullivan county, New York. By this union there are four children as follows: Jessie and China, the latter living in Elgin, while Jessie is a teacher in the public schools in Oregon; Georgia, a teacher living in California; and Mary, who married Blucher Remmington, by whom she has one child, Merrill Vernon, and they reside in Kansas. The mother of these children died March 16, 1877, and Mr. Bell, April 18, 1880, in Hampshire township, married Lucy D. Babcock, who was born near Warsaw, Greene county, New York, who was but two and a half years old when her parents came west in 1854. She is the daughter of William H. Babcock, a son of Abiram and Susanna (Lee) Babcock, the latter being a cousin of General Robert E. Lee. William H. Babcock, who was born October 10, 1816, married Cornelia E., widow of Evan Soules, and a daughter of Andrew and Julia (Diston) Hogeboom, who were among the earliest settlers of De Kalb county, and who also owns land in Hampshire township. William H. Babcock came to Kane county in 1854, and died on his old homestead, September 12, 1884. By this second union there is one child, a daughter, Albertine.
Politically Mr. Bell is a Republican, and while believing in the principles of the party, from the time of its organization, yet cast his first presidential ballot for U. S. Grant, in 1868, having missed his vote at every preceding election, in consequence of being away from home at election time. He served as school director several years. Mrs. Bell has likewise served as school director, discharging the duties of the office in a satisfactory manner. Our subject remembers hearing his parents talk of the fall of stars in 1832. People then thought the world was coming to an end, the falling stars being a fulfillment of prophecy. His mother's sister, "Aunt Gurney," took down her Bible and began reading the account of the falling stars and the moon which should be turned into blood.
HENRY M. CRAWFORD, M. D., of St. Charles, has rounded the Psalmist's span of three-score years and ten, but is still actively engaged in the practice of his profession, having for forty-nine years devoted his life and services to the alleviation of human suffering. It is a record probably almost unparalleled in the history of the state. He came to Illinois when the northern district was but sparsely settled and rode for miles over the prairies administering to those who needed medical aid, and his kindness and generosity, as well as 'professional skill, endeared him to the hearts of many. His has been a life of peculiar usefulness and its record forms an important chapter in the history of Kane county.
A native of Ireland, Dr. Crawford was born in the city of Belfast in 1820 and is of Scotch, ancestry. He acquired a classical education and then took a course in the Royal College of Belfast, an affiliated college of the London University. He was also a student in educational institutions of Dublin and Edinburg, and after completing his medical studies began the practice of his profession, which he continued for four years in Europe. He had built up a very extensive business when in 1848, he finally yielded to the importunities of some friends who wished him to accept a position as surgeon on an emigrant ship bound for New York. On arriving at New York he was induced by an eminent physician of that city to remain for a few days, which period was ultimately extended until he had remained in the eastern metropolis for nearly a year.
The Doctor then resolved to make a trip through the west to see the country and in the course of his travels arrived at the village of St. Charles, Illinois, in October, 1848. While here he, with other members of the party, was overtaken by a severe snow storm, which compelled him to remain until the roads could be opened. While here he was repeatedly urged to remain and engage in the practice of his profession, and finally yielding to this persuasion, St. Charles became his home. He soon had a large patronage that came from a territory extending one hundred miles westward from Lake Michigan and up into Wisconsin. Frequently on making these long trips he would have relays of horses stationed at various points in order to take him with all possible speed to the beside of a sufferer. He was often called long distances to take part in a consultation and such a practice in those early days involved many hardships, occasioned by the long drives through the storms of winter, or over almost impassable roads in the rainy season of spring and fall.
In 1861 Dr. Crawford was induced by Col. William Lynch to accept a surgeon's commission for the Fifty-eighth Illinois Infantry, and in that capacity served until the close of the war. He was in the active practice of his profession during six pitched battles and a great many lesser engagements, serving as regimental and division surgeon of the Sixteenth Army Corps. He was chief of hospitals at LaGrange, and faithfully did his duty toward the sick and wounded until the close of the war and the return of the soldiers to their homes relieved him of all further effort in this direction. On his return he resumed practice in St. Charles, and in a short time opened an office in Chicago, where he remained for about a year, when he was burned out in the great fire which devastated that city in 1871. He lost therein a large and valuable library and all his surgical instruments to the value of several thousand dollars. Then again he returned to St. Charles and has since actively been engaged in the practice of medicine and surgery. He has been surgeon for the Great Western or Maple Leaf railroad, and also acted as surgeon for the Northwestern road in years past. He has successfully performed some very difficult surgical operations, and his professional efforts have been attended with a uniform success that is very gratifying and won him an enviable prestige.
Dr. Crawford was married in St. Charles, in 1855, to Miss Margaret P. McWilliams, a native of Ireland, born and reared in Ulster, near Belfast. They have three children: Henry M., a man of good education, most exemplary habits and excellent business ability, who assists his father in managing the business and estate; Minnie E. and Margaret Hypatia at home.
The Doctor is independent in his political convictions, supporting the men and measures in which he believes, regardless of party affiliations. He is a believer in free trade or a retaliatory tariff, and also advocates a gold standard monetary system, and on this issue gave his support to President McKinley in 1896. In his religious views he is also liberal. He does not use the term religion in its common acceptation, and would prefer the use of the term conscientious obligations, to implying an obedience to the sense of right as gained from the best experience and practice of those whose lives are most worthy of emulation. He believes in leaving every individual free to form their own opinions and feels that there is an inner consciousness whose promptings will lead in the path of virtue and duty if only followed out. His own life is an exemplification of this belief, and St. Charles has no more worthy, honorable or respected citizen than Dr. Crawford. He has always been active and liberal in support of the measures which have contributed to the upbuilding, advancement and improvement of St. Charles, and has left the impress of his individuality indelibly on the best interests of the city and of the county through half a century.
F.W. BLOSS, a leading hardware merchant doing business at No. 25 South Broadway, is a native of Aurora, born March 20, 1858, and is the son of Daniel and Telina (Davis) Bloss, who at one time owned the property from Spring Lake cemetery clear to Jackson street. He came from New York to Aurora about 1844, and engaged in carpentering and contracting, which occupation he followed for a few years. In company with Russell C. Mix he worked on the Blackhawk mill, and also on many other buildings. Strange to relate, the two were buried on the same day, February 21, 1871, Mr. Bloss dying on the 18th of February, from congestion of the lungs. His marriage with Miss Telina Davis occurred about 1845. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, but took no especially active part. His wife is still living at the age of seventy-three years, and a resident of Emporia, Kansas, is also a member of the Methodist Episcopal church. Of their family of five children, our subject is the youngest. Of the others, Henry, who was first a farmer and later a telegrapher, died at the age of forty years; Mary J. is the wife of L. Titsworth, of Aurora; Bertha is the wife of C. B. Sims, of Emporia, Kansas.
The subject of this sketch received his education in the schools of Aurora, and spent his boyhood and youth engaged in farm work. In 1878 he became a clerk in a hardware store in Aurora, and with the exception of one year as postal clerk and one year as clerk in the offices of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company, he has been in the hardware business, either as clerk or proprietor. In 1889 he purchased the establishment of his employer, and has since conducted a profitable business. His stock of hardware, stoves, ranges and agricultural implements is always full and complete, and he has his full share of trade of both city and country.
Mr. Bloss has been twice married, his first union, in 1884, being with Miss Belle Elliott, daughter of W. F. and Sarah Elliott, of Oswego, Illinois. Two children were born of this union as follows: Daniel Elliott and Belle. The mother died June 22, 1892, at the age of thirty-two years. She was a member of the Presbyterian church, and for some years was a teacher in the schools of Oswego, Illinois, and in other parts of Kendall county. The second marriage of Mr. Bloss was celebrated September 21, 1894, when he was united with Miss Clara Fickensher, a daughter of Henry Fickensher, one of the old settlers of Aurora. She is a member of the German Methodist Episcopal church. Politically, Mr. Bloss is a Republican, and although never aspiring to office himself, he has been quite active in the interests of his friends. A lifelong resident of Aurora and a representative of one of its pioneer families, he takes especial interest in everything calculated to promote the growth and prosperity of his native city, and is therefore numbered among Aurora's most enterprising citizens.
ASAHEL T. JUDD is engaged in farming on section 10, Sugar Grove township, and is well known as one of the most enterprising and progressive farmers of the township. He is a native of New York, born in Warren county, on the banks of Lake George, March 21, 1844, and is the son of Dexter C. and Eliza (Brown) Judd, the former a native of Massachusetts, born March 11, 1822, and the latter a native of New York. Sarson L. Judd, the grandfather of our subject, was also born in Massachusetts, from which state he moved to New York about 1830, locating in Warren county on the banks of Lake George, where he reared his family and spent the remainder of his life.
In 1850, Dexter C. Judd came to Kane county, Illinois, and joined his uncle, Thomas Judd, who settled here about 1836.
On coming to Kane county, Dexter C. Judd purchased about twenty acres in Sugar Grove township, on which he built a dwelling and also a blacksmith shop, and there resided a few years, engaged in working at his trade of blacksmith, and also in farming. Selling his original purchase, he bought a farm of two hundred and seventy-five acres, on which were some improvements. Repairing the house and building a shop, he began work and in due time became a successful and prosperous farmer. He later sold the farm to his son, Sarson L., and removed to Aurora, where he lived retired and where his death occurred in 1893. His wife passed away one year previous.
The subject of this sketch was but six years old when he came with his parents to Kane county. He received his education in the common schools of Sugar Grove township, and remained at home assisting his father until eighteen years of age. In the fall of 1862, he enlisted in Company H, One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and joined Grant's command at Jackson, Tennessee. He participated in the battle of Champion Hills and in the siege and surrender of Vicksburg. Later he did provost duty there for several months, and while there was commissioned second lieutenant, and assigned to the Third United States Heavy Artillery, which was retained on garrison duty at Vicksburg, until the close of the war. He was discharged in August, 1865, although at home on a sick furlough. For nearly two years he was an invalid, due from exposure while in service.
On the 12th of November, 1868, Mr. Judd was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth Reynolds, daughter of Silas Reynolds, whose sketch appears in this work. She was reared on the farm where she now resides. By this union there is one son, Ira R., who is married and resides in the village of Sugar Grove, where he is associated with S. L. Judd in the agricultural implement business. He is a young man of good business ability and is quite popular in the community where he resides. Soon after marriage Mr. and Mrs. Judd located on a farm in Sugar Grove township, of one hundred and eighty acres, which he purchased and improved. They there resided two years, and then came to their present farm, which comprises a part of the old Reynolds homestead. Here they remained for six years and then moved to Aurora, where Mr. Judd engaged in the lumber business, in which he continued five years. In 1883 they returned to the farm, Mrs. Judd having inherited a part of the estate. In addition to that inherited by Mrs. Judd, he purchased two hundred and twenty acres of other heirs, and now has five hundred and thirty-six acres of well improved and valuable land. He ,has remodeled the house and built a good barn, and made other valuable improvements to the place. In the winter of 1897-8 he fed some fourteen hundred head of. sheep, which he prepared for the market.
Politically, Mr. Judd is a Republican, and has voted for every presidential nominee of the party since 1868, when he cast his ballot for Gen. U. S. Grant. By his fellow citizens he has been honored with a number of local offices, including township collector, which he held two or three terms, commissioner of highways, township trustee, and has served as a delegate to various conventions of his party. In 1865 he became a Master Mason, and is now a member of both the blue lodge and chapter of Aurora. He is a well known man in Kane county, having been identified with its interests almost half century.
AUGUSTINE H. HUBBARD, ESQ., who is now serving as justice of the peace, with office at No. 19 Chicago street, Elgin, was born on the 17th of March, 1850, in Salem, Michigan, a son of Harvey and Emily (Hamilton) Hubbard, natives of New York state. Four children were born to them: Mary, wife of J. H. Cooley, of Trinidad, Colorado; Martha and Eva, who are also residents of that city; and Augustine H. Throughout the greater part of his active business life the father engaged in the real estate business and,, in farming. For many years he made his home in Minnesota, locating in Winona, that state at an early day, later lived some time in Elgin, Illinois, and then with his family removed to Trinidad, Colorado, where he died in 1885, at the age of seventy-two years. His estimable wife still makes her home in that city, and is a consistent member of the Congregational church. He belonged to the same church, and served as deacon for many years. While living in Winona, he filled the office of supervisor for one term, and was also school trustee for many years.
The grandfathers of our subject, Mr. Hubbard and Isaac Hamilton, were born in New York, of English ancestry, and reared large families. The former died in Salem, Michigan, when well advanced in years, and the latter, who was a farmer by occupation, passed away, when living in the same state, at the age of seventy.
Mr. Hubbard, whose name introduces this sketch, was ten years old when his parents left their old home in Michigan and removed to Minnesota, where he spent the following quarter of a century in Winona, St. Paul and Lake City. He attended the Normal School in Winona, and at the age of seventeen began clerking in Lake City, where he remained for several years. During the Indian wars, he served as special messenger for General Sibley for two years, after which he attended a commercial college in Chicago. After about three years spent in dairy farming in McHenry county, Illinois, Mr. Hubbard came to Elgin in 1871, and for some time was employed in the city clerk's office. For twenty years he has now acceptably served as justice of the peace, and has also successfully engaged in the life and fire insurance business.
On the 25th of October, 1870, Mr. Hubbard led to the marriage altar Miss Martha L. Hatch, a daughter of Lewis and Mandana (Cole) Hatch, and to them have been born two sons-Frederick, who married BeyrI Burns, and is now a special agent for the Hanover Fire Insurance Company for Illinois and Michigan; and Roy, who is clerking in Elgin. The wife and mother, who was an active worker and faithful member of the Baptist church, was called to her final rest in February, 1897. Mr. Hubbard is also a prominent member of the same church, and is now serving as trustee. His political support is always given the men and measures of the Republican party, and he is thoroughly interested in whatever tends to promote the moral, intellectual and material welfare of the community. His home is at No. 145 Hill street.
RURIC A. FRENCH, an energetic farmer and stock trader, residing on section 32,. Hampshire township, was born in East Java, Wyoming county, New York, January 13, 1862. His father, Martin French, was born in Pennsylvania, and is a successful mechanic, now living in Wyoming county, New York. He is the son of Nathaniel French, also a native of Pennsylvania. Martin French married Diana Thornton, a native of East Java, New York, and a daughter of Oben Thornton, who is still living at the age of one hundred and four years, making his home with his daughter, Mrs. French. He married Clarissa Lord, long since deceased. To Martin and Diana French the following named children were born: Jay, a physician of Chautauqua county, New York; Ruric A., our subject; Myron, who lives on the old farm in Wyoming county; and Fred, deceased.
The subject of this sketch attended the district school until the age of eighteen, but remained with his father until twenty-two years old. For one year he worked for a stock trader in Wyoming county, and then began business for himself, renting a farm for two years and engaging in agricultural pursuits. He was then in the produce business for one year, buying through the country and shipping to New York and Philadelphia. In 1885 he came west on a visit, and September 3, of that year, he married Miss Anna Gage, born on the farm where they now reside, and a daughter of John and Evaline (Rich) Gage. Her father was born in East Java, New York, and was reared on a farm. In 1846 he came west with his parents, driving from Wyoming county to Buffalo, New York, and from thence coming west by lake to Chicago and by teams to Kane county. The family first settled on section 29, with the Guernseys. John Gage later purchased the farm on section 32, where he resided until his death, which occurred August 20, 1897. During the excitement with reference to gold in California he went to that New Eldorado, and spent the years 1853 and 1854.
John Gage was the son of Solomon and Mary (Guernsey) Gage, the former a native of New Hampshire, born in 1788, and dying in Hampshire, October 21, 1851. The latter was a daughter of Cyril Guernsey, born in New Hampshire in 1786, and dying in Hampshire township, December 17, 1866. Eveline Rich, wife of John Gage, twin sister of Evelyn E. Rich, was born on the old homestead, in Rutland township, Kane county, April 26, 1839, and is the daughter of Elijah Rich, who was born in Massachusetts, June 10, 1795, and who moved to the town of Benson, Rutland county, Vermont, about 1810, and who came to Illinois in the spring of 1836, and settled on sections 30 and 31, Rutland township, shortly after his nephew, E. R. Starks, made the first permanent settlement. He took up a claim south of Starks', and the two kept "bach" one year. The following year he brought out his family, and here resided until his death, November 10, 1871. The first time he came to the country, he drove through from his eastern home with a horse and buggy. Illustrative of the lack of convenience in those days, it is said that Mr. Rich on one occasion walked to the residence of Mr. Stone, hear Elgin, to grind his axe, no grindstone being near. Their mail was received at Chicago. Elijah Rich was the son of Elijah Rich, Sr., who died in Vermont in 1835, before his son came west. The Rich family in America descended from four brothers, who emigrated from Wales. Elijah Rich first married Triphosa Fowler, by whom he had four children. His second marriage was with Anise Meacham, by whom five children were born, of whom Eveline was one. To John and Eveline Gage six children were born, as follows: Frank E., who died in infancy; Frank E., the second, residing at Starks Station ; Anna, wife of our subject; John S. living at Starks Station; Perry Hart is an employee of the Chicago & Alton railroad, at Chicago; Clara V., wife of Perry Hart, of Chicago; and Pearl, residing on the old homestead with her sister.
After marriage, Mr. and Mrs. French went east to the old home of Mr. French, where he engaged in the produce business, but the climate not agreeing with his wife, they returned to Kane county in 1886. From 1886 to 1888 Mr. French was in the stock business in Elgin, and then commenced farming on two hundred acres of the estate of the father of Mrs. French, in which he has continued to the present time, while also engaging quite extensively as a dealer in stock. Like many other farmers in this region, he is engaged principally in dairy farming, milking from fifty to seventy-five cows, and shipping the product to Chicago. Mrs. French received her education in the schools of Burlington and Hampshire townships, and has spent her entire life on the homestead where she now resides, with the exception of the years spent in Wyoming county, New York, immediately after her marriage. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church of Hampshire, and is a woman who delights in doing good. Mr. and Mrs. French have one child, Earle, born December 11, 1887, at 444 South street, Elgin, Illinois, who is attending the Hampshire schools. Politically Mr. French is a Republican, and is an energetic, hustling farmer and stock trader, a good neighbor and excellent citizen.
GEORGE FITCH RUGGLES, deceased, was of English descent, whose lineage can be traced back to William the Conqueror, of England, while his more immediate ancestors for several generations were natives of Rutland, Vermont. He was born December 12, 1818, at Rutland, Vermont, and is the son of Major John and Pollie (Gould) Ruggles. His early education was obtained at Castleton Seminary, Vermont, supplemented by a course at Middlebury College, Vermont, where he graduated in 1848. On account of his health being delicate, he went to Virginia after leaving college, and gave instruction to pupils in a private family, after which he clerked in a furniture store at Boston, Massachusetts, where his brother had an interest in the business. But before proceeding further with the personal history our subject, we give briefly a record of his illustrious progenitors:
(1) William the Conqueror, king of England, 1066, married Lady Matilda, daughter of Baldwin V., count of Flanders, and great-granddaughter of Hugh Capet, king of France. (2) Princess Gundred, died 1085, married William Warren, earl of Surrey. (3) Lady Editha de Warren married Gerard de Gournay. (4) Hugh de Gournay, died 1180. (5) Hugh de Gournay, lord of Beverstan, Gloucestershire. (6) Anselme, Baron de Gournay, died 1240. (7) Robert de Gournay, died 1268. (8) Anselme de Gournay, died 1285. (9) John de Gournay, lord of Beverstan. (10) Lady Elizabeth de Gournay, married Sir John ap Adam, 1291. (11) Sir John ap Adam. (12) William ap Adam. (13) Sir John ap Adam, knight. (14) Thomas ap Adam, married Lady Jane, daughter of Sir John Ing, knight. (15) Sir John ap Adam, married Lady Millicent, daughter of Sir Matthew Besylls. (16) Sir John Adam, married Clara, daughter of Roger Powell. (17) Roger Adams, married Jane Eliot. (18) Thomas Adams, married Marie Upton. (19) John Adams, married Cathering Stebbing. (20) John Adams, married Margary Squier. (21) Richard Adams, married Margaret Armager. (22) William Adams, married Miss Borington. (23) Henry Adams, of Braintree, Massachusetts, died in 1646. He was also ancestor of Presidents John and John Quincy Adams, and the Revolutionary patriot, Samuel Adams. (24) Edward Adams, of Medfield, Massachusetts, died 1716. (25) Henry Adams, of Medford, Massachusetts, and Plainfield (now Canterbury), Connecticut, born October 29, 1663. (26) Ruth Adams, married Amos Kingsley. (27) Isaiah Kingsley. (28) Phineas Kingsley. (29) Eunice Kingsley, married Major John Ruggles, who fought in the war of 1812. (30) George Fitch Ruggles, the subject of this sketch.
George Fitch Ruggles, our subject, was married April 25, 1856, to Louise Gould, whose parents, John and Theodosia (Nichols) Gould, was one of the old and honored families of Essex county, New York. She was the youngest of a family of seven, and was educated at the Miss Lees Seminary, Burlington, Vermont. Major John Ruggles was an extensive land owner and was twice married, the first time in 1800. His second wife, Eunice Kingsley, he married in 1807. This lady was a descendant of John Alden, who came over in the Mayflower. George F. Ruggles is the eighth in direct descent from John Alden.
In 1860,our subject and wife and his daughter, Theodosia, now Mrs. W. T. Reeves, came to Galesburg, Illinois, by way of Chicago, but soon afterwards went to Milwaukee, where Mr. Ruggles started a linseed oil factory, which soon afterwards was destroyed by fire. The family then moved to Chicago, where Mrs. Ruggles' mother and three brothers were living, her father having died in the east. Mr. Ruggles then became engaged in the life insurance business, at which he continued until 1868, when he came to Aurora to act as superintendent of the foundry work of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy railroad shops. The company doing the work for the railroad at that time was N. S. Bouston & Co., Chicago. A severe attack of the grip caused retirement from the shops in 1791, and he was an invalid for two and a half years, dying December 4, 1893. His only child, Theodosia, is the wife of Dr. W. T. Reeves, D. D. S., doing business in Chicago. They have four children - Helen, Allen, Marjorie and Louise. During his life Mr. Ruggles was a member of the Congregational church, and for many years a deacon in the same.
GRANT GOODRICH, D. D. S., one of the leading and popular dentists of Elgin, was born in Iowa, near Clinton, November 23, 1861, and is a son of Herman and Emily (Duncklee) Goodrich, natives of Pottsdam, New York, and Du Page county, Illinois, respectively. The mother died July 1, 1874, at the age of thirty-six years, leaving six children, namely: Carrie, now the wife of C. P. Dandy, of Los Angeles, California; Grant; Walter, of Elgin; Harry and Herman, of Chadbourn, North Carolina; and Mame, wife of John Way, of Los Angeles. For over twenty years the father was a successful dealer in sewing machines and attachments, but since 1882, has engaged in farming in North Carolina. After the death of his first wife he married Miss Frances Brewster, by whom he has two sons-Charles and Monroe. The Doctor's paternal great-grandmother lived to the extreme old age of one hundred and six years, but his grandfather, Ebenezer Goodrich, died at the age of forty. He was a native of Pottsdam, New York, and had two sons. The maternal grandfather was a farmer by occupation and died at the age of fifty.
From the age of two years Dr. Goodrich was reared in Chicago, and acquired his early education in the public schools of that city. Later he attended the Elgin Academy, and for seven years was his father's bookkeeper in Chicago. He studied dentistry and graduated from the Chicago College of Dental Surgery with the class of 1888, and the same year opened an office in Elgin, where he has since successfully engaged in practice.
On the 4th of June, 1884, Dr. Goodrich led to the marriage altar Miss Kittie Truesdell, a daughter of Dr. W. H. and Jane (Burritt) Truesdell. They have a pleasant home at No. 565 Park street, which the Doctor built in 1888. He is a member of the Northern Illinois Dental Association, and also belongs to Monitor lodge, F. & A. M., and the Royal Arcanum, while politically he is identified with the Republican party.
FREDERICK J. MARSHALL, section 10, Plato township, is numbered among the young and progressive farmers of the township. His father George P. Marshall, was born at Ryther, Yorkshire, England, May 9, 1817, and died on his old homestead in Elgin township, Kane county, October 3, 1881. In his native land he learned the carpenter's trade which occupation he followed for some years. In 1842, he emigrated to Canada, and two years later came to Kane county, and for two years rented a farm in Plato township and then purchased seventy-seven acres, in sections 27-8, Elgin township, where he engaged in agricultural pursuits until his death. He was a man highly respected by all who knew him, and left to his descendants a good name, of which they are justly proud. He was the son of James and Ann (Parker) Marshall, whose entire life was spent in Yorkshire, England. While yet residing in Canada, in 1842, George P. Marshall married Mary Burton, born in Sharrington, near Montreal, Canada, August 14, 1825, and a daughter of John Burton and Jane (Stringer) Burton, the former a native of North Burton, Yorkshire, England, born in 1792, and the latter in Hull, Yorkshire, England, in 1794.
Frederick J. Marshall was ninth in a family of ten children, and was born October 4, 1860. Until sixteen years of age he attended the public schools a portion of each year and assisted his father in the cultivation of the home farm. From sixteen to twenty-one he worked by the month on various farms. On the 7th of March, 1883, in Elgin township, he married Miss Mary McKinnell, the fourth in a family of nine children born to Peter and Jesse McDowell McKinnell. By this union four children have been born - Maude M., Roy I., Elma M. and George P.
Immediately after his marriage Mr. Marshall rented the old homestead one year, then the farm of George Stringer one year, and then spent one year at Udina, engaged in carpentering, after which he occupied the old homestead two years. He then moved to Elgin and followed the carpenter's trade for three years, after which he rented a farm near Pingree Grove, Plato township, for two years, and in 1893 leased his present place, known as the Cornell farm, consisting of two hundred and fourteen acres, and is engaged in dairy farming.
Politically Mr. Marshall is a Republican, with which party he has been identified since attaining his majority. Fraternally he is a member of Pingree Grove camp, No. 655, M. W. A. In religion he is liberal in his views.
SAMUEL S. BRILL, dealer in general merchandise, St. Charles, Illinois, is one of the young, active and enterprising business men of the place. He was born in the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, June 19, 1869. His father, Israel Brill, is a native of Prussia, where he grew to manhood and married. Emigrating to the United States, he located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and a few years later removed to Chicago, and has since been an active business man of that city.
Samuel S. Brill grew to manhood in Chicago, and was educated in its public schools. He is one of seven children born to his parents, all of whom are living: Lena, wife of M. Davidson, a business man of Milwaukee; Joseph, a civil engineer, married and residing in New York; Samuel S., of this review; Charles, who is married and in business in Chicago; Isaac, holding a responsible position in Chicago; Simon, who is clerking for our subject at St. Charles; and Anna, at home.
When quite young, our subject began clerking in a mercantile establishment in Chicago, and for about ten years was thus employed, receiving a thorough and practical business training. In 1891, he came to St. Charles, put in a stock of general merchandise and commenced business for himself. He was soon, however, burned out, meeting with a severe loss, but with true Chicago grit, within ten days he was again selling goods. By fair dealing, he has built up an extensive trade, and carries one of the largest and most complete stocks of general merchandise in St. Charles. In the seven years that he has been engaged in business, in this place, he has built up a trade second to none, and as a reputable business man, he is respected and honored by all.
Mr. Brill was united in marriage in Chicago, March 18, 1893, to Miss Jennie Winsberg, a native of Germany, but who was reared and educated in Chicago. They have one son, Leon L. a bright little lad of three years, and a daughter, Blanche.
Politically, Mr. Brill is independent, taking no active part in political affairs, his taste and inclination running in the direction of business, rather than politics. An almost lifelong resident of Illinois, he is now thoroughly identified with the interest of St. Charles and Kane county and by its people is held in the highest esteem.
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