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
Thomas F. Rich
THOMAS F. RICH, a veteran of the war for the union, and for many .years a substantial farmer in Kane county, is now living a retired life in the village of Hampshire. He was born in the town of Benson, Rutland county, Vermont, where he attended country schools until the age of twelve years. In 1836 the family came west, leaving Whitehall, Vermont, May 16, going by canal to Buffalo, New York, and thence by lake to Chicago. On account of severe storms, they were required to lay by for three days at Manitou Islands. Arriving at Chicago, they at once went to Naperville, Illinois, where they resided until the following October, when they moved to Deerfield precinct, now Rutland township, Kane county, where the father took up three hundred acres in the southwest corner of the township.
Elijah Rich, the father, was one of the first settlers of Rutland township. He was born in Worcester, Massachusetts, June 10, 1795, and with his parents removed to the town of Benson, Rutland county, Vermont, in 1810. His father, Elijah Rich, Sr., was a soldier in the Revolutionary war. Elijah Rich married Tryphosa Fowler, a native of Vermont and a daughter of Thomas and Betsy Fowler. By this union there were four children, of whom our subject was second in order of birth. In 1835 the father came west, riding all the way from his Vermont home to Kane county, Illinois, on horseback. Being favorably impressed with the country he returned home and as already stated, brought out his family in 1836. Here his last days were spent, and he died full of years, while honored and respected by all.
The subject of this sketch remained at home until nineteen years of age, when he ran away and lived with the Indians for a time. He then went to Chicago, where he worked one year, going from thence to Galena, Illinois, where for three years he found employment in the lead mines. Attracted by the glitter of a traveling circus, he joined it, and remained with it for six months. The life was a hard one and he was well pleased to break his connection with it. For two summers he was on the Mississippi river, running on the steamer, Amaranth, plying between St. Peters, Minnesota, and St. Louis. The greater part of the time, however, the boat ran no farther north than Galena.
Having enough of a roving life, he returned to Kane county and purchased one hundred and twenty acres in section 20, Rutland township, which had been partially improved, having on it a log house and log stable. He at once went to work and in due time had one of the most productive farms in the township, and all improvements were in keeping with the time. He there remained until 1891, when he sold the place and removed to the village of Hampshire, where he owns a good dwelling and also a store building on Main street. Mr. Rich has been twice married, his first union being with Miss Priscilla Noakes, who was born April 14, 1823, on the ocean, while her parents were emigrating to America from England. She was a daughter of Thomas and Mary Noakes. This wedding ceremony was celebrated in Rutland township in 1850, and by this union were four children as follows: Albert, who lives in Dundee; Anise, who married Henry Stevens, and now lives at Molino, Florida; Mary, who died at the age of four years; and Alan-son, who lives in Nebraska. Mrs. Priscilla Rich dying December 3, 1876, Mr. Rich was again married, March 3,1880, his second union being with Miss Mary Welsh, born in Lewisburg, Virginia, and a daughter of William and Catherine (Schaver) Welsh. By this second union, one daughter was born, Ada, who resides at home.
When the South rebelled, and endeavered by force of arms to dismember the union, Mr. Rich showed his patriotism by enlisting in the Eighth Illinois Calvary, serving from September 18, 1861, until September, 1864, when he was honorably discharged. He was in the first battle of Bull Run, was at Seven Pines, Whitehouse Landing, Mechanicsville, and in all sixty regular battles. His interest in war matters has been maintained and he is now a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, while his wife is a member of the Relief Corps. In politics he is a Republican.
CYRUS H. WOODRUFF is one of the old and honored citizens of Elgin, his home being at No.306 Chicago street. A native of Massachusetts, he was born February 15, 1819, in the "town of West Stock-bridge, Berkshire county, and is a son of Henry and Belinda (Benedict) Woodruff, also natives of that state. His paternal grandfather, Asaph Woodruff, was a soldier of the Revolutionary war, serving under Captain Reddington, of Richmond, and Colonel Williams and Benedict Arnold. In November, 1775, he went with his regiment to Canada, under command of General Montgomery, and after the capture of St. Johns and Montcalm, they joined Arnold's forces at Quebec. The siege at that place lasted until December 31, during which Montgomery was killed. The troops then fell back, spending a miserable winter in fortifications of snow, where they were without food for three days, and at any time the soldiers could be tracked by bloody footprints. Mr. Woodruff re-enlisted July 17, 1777, but the same month was discharged and transferred to another company. He never received a pension, as when the army was finally discharged and paid off, he and some of his comrades were taking home some sick soldiers. He died in 1833, at about the age of ninety years, and his last wife, Ruth (Stone) Woodruff, died a few years later at a ripe old age.
Henry Woodruff, our subject's father, was born in 1794, and was a soldier of the war of 1812, being a member of an artillery company stationed at Boston. He died before pensions were issued for that war. He was a practical surveyor, and also engaged in farming and the manufacture of lime and brick. One night while sawing marble in a mill, he became entangled in the gearing about nine p. m., and being all alone he was unable to make any one hear his cries for help, no one coming to his relief until about six o'clock the next morning. After twenty-four hours of terrible suffering, he passed away, in 1826. He was one of a large family of children, of whom Gilbert Woodruff is still living at the age of eighty-eight years, being the oldest man in the section of North Carolina where he makes his home. For the past twenty years he has been the only survivor of the family. The mother of our subject, who was a daughter of John and Betsy Benedict, died in 1832, in the faith of the Presbyterian Church, of which she was a consistent member. Cyrus H. is the oldest of the four children and is the only one now living. John B., an attorney, died at the age of twenty-six years; Harriet B. died in 1831, at the age of eleven; and Lewis T. died at the age of twenty-three. All were residents of West Stockbridge, Massachusetts. John B. was a graduate of Union College, New York.
Mr. Woodruff, of this review, began his education in the schools of West Stockbridge, and later attended an academy at Canaan, New York. He was reared on a farm, and before attaining his majority he engaged in teaching for three winters. He then embarked in the hardware business in Stockbridge, meeting with fair success in this undertaking. A few years later he became a partner in a blast furnace at West Stockbridge, with which he was connected until coming west in 1856. In partnership with another gentleman, he engaged in the hardware business in Lena, Illinois, until 1862, when he removed to Dundee, Kane county, organizing the Illinois Iron & Bolt Company, of which he was secretary and treasurer for three years. Since 1868 he has made his home in Elgin, where he was engaged in the foundry business for six years, being forced to retire at the end of that time on account of rheumatism. Since then he has engaged in no active business.
On the 19th of March, 1840, Mr. Woodruff was united in marriage with Miss Louisa Sprague, of Austerlitz, New York, a daughter of Heman and Anna Sprague. Of their five children, Mary Ann died at the age of nine years, Harriet B., at the age of five years, and Emma Isabel, at the age of ten months. Ida Louise is the wife of W. Eugene Bosworth, a merchant of Elgin, and they have five children-Cyrus I., who graduates from Yale College with the class of 1898; Charles E., who died in 1885, at the age of nine years; Ralph Roy, Ethel M. and Walter Henry. Charles Henry, the youngest child of our subject, married Marian Eaton and has two children - Wilda E. and Rosella.
Mr. and Mrs. Woodruff, their son, daughter and son-in-law are all members of the Baptist church, in which the last named is serving as deacon. Since attaining his majority in 1840, Mr. Woodruff has been identified with the Democratic party, and since 1856 he has affiliated with the Masonic order. While a resident of Massachusetts, he took quite an active and prominent part in political affairs, and in 1849 and 1853 was elected to the state legislature, serving-for two terms with credit to himself and to the satisfaction of his constituents. Among his colleagues were several noted men, including George S. Boutwell, Gen. N. P. Banks, Benjamin Butler, Amasa Walker and H. L. Dawes. After coming west his business interests occupied his entire attention, leaving no time to devote to political affairs. He never acts except from honest motives and in all his varied relations in business affairs and in social life, he has maintained a character and standing that has impressed all with his sincere and manly purpose to do by others as he would have others do by him.
JOHN McKELLAR, who resides on a farm on section 20, Plato township, was born at Plato Corners January 11, 1857. His grandfather, Archibald McKellar, was a native of Argyleshire, Scotland, born January 12, 1777, and there died February 25, 1864, at the age of eighty-six years. He was by occupation a farmer and fisherman, and married Mary McGregor, a descendant of Rob Roy, the Scottish chieftain.
Daniel McKellar, the father of our subject, was born in a fishing boat in Argyleshire, forty miles from Glasgow, June 12, 1813, and died March 16, 1889. He lived on the farm and followed fishing with his father. Their old stone house on the Clyde is yet visible from passing boats. When a young man he and his brother Duncan opened a store on one of the islands, and there secured a good trade. His brother had served with the Scotch Greys in the British army. During a short visit to his home on the mainland his brother died, and the widow in a very short time disposed of everything and sailed for America.
In 1836 Daniel McKellar, in company with his cousin, Colin McKellar, came to America, sailing from Greenock, Scotland. He lived ten years at Dryden Corners, 'Tompkins county, New York, where he rented land and engaged in farming. In 1837 his parents also came to this country, and later his brother, Hugh McKellar, came. In 1846 the family came to Kane county, Illinois, lived one year in Elgin township, and then Daniel and his father bought one hundred and sixty acres of land west of Plato Corners, to which he subsequently added twenty-five acres more. Daniel McKellar lived at Plato Corners from 1853 until his death in 1889.
On the 4th of July, 1850, Daniel McKellar married Miss Emily Sovereign, born at Simcoe, Canada, August 3, 1827. She lived at Simcoe and in New York state until she came west, in October, 1845. She is the daughter of Richard Sovereign, a native of New Jersey, who died about 1866, at the age of seventy-three years. He was a carpenter and builder by trade, but purchased eighty acres in Plato township, and there engaged in farming. His father, Henry Sovereign, also a native of New Jersey, died at Ludlow, New York. Richard Sovereign married Elizabeth Plummer, daughter of George and Hannah (Murtrie) Plummer. To Daniel and Emily McKellar eleven children were born, as follows: Richard, who died at the age of twelve years; Jennie, wife of John Sherwood; Archibald, who died at the age of thirty-seven; John, our subject; Mary, who married Thomas Dadswell; Anabelle, who married Robert Shedden; Ruby,
wife of Arthur Durrant; Richard married Lydia Wright, and lives in Elgin; Daniel, who died at the age of fifteen months; James Gregor lives at home with his mother; and Benjamin, who died in infancy.
John McKellar, our subject, remained at home with his father until his marriage, when he began farming for himself. He was married in Plato township February 12, 1884, to Miss Minnie Sherwood, a daughter of Seth Sherwood, a native of New York, who came west in 1846 with his father's family. Seth Sherwood was the son of John and Sarah (Pease) Sherwood, the former a native of Virginia, who lived some years in New York, served in the war of 1812, and later emigrated to Kane county, where he died at the age of seventy-four years. Of the eight children born to Seth Sherwood and wife, Mrs. McKellar is the youngest.
Mr. McKellar owns a fine farm of one hundred and forty acres, while Mrs. McKellar is the owner of one hundred and sixty acres in several tracts, but all lying in Plato township. Mr. McKellar devotes his time to general farming, making a specialty of raising and fattening cattle for the market. In politics he is an uncompromising Republican, taking great interest in political affairs, and has served as a member of the county executive committee of his party. He has been honored by his friends and neighbors with a number of local township offices.
CHARLES W. SUHR, who is operating a fine farm on section 7, Hampshire township, was born in Belvidere, Illinois, November 26, 1867. His father, Joseph C. Suhr, was born in the village of Lang-felden, Pomerania, Germany, August 30, 1837, and was the son of Joseph Suhr, also a native of the same country. The father was reared to farm life, and received a good education in his native land. In 1867 he sailed from Hamburg on the sailing vessel Liverance, and after a voyage of seven weeks and three days landed at New York, November 12, 1867. From there he came direct to Belvidere, Illinois, where he lived for nine years, working at odd jobs, but the greater part of the time on farms. In 1876 he came to Hampshire township, Kane county, Illinois, rented a farm, and in eight years saved enough to make his first purchase of land, which is comprised in the farm now occupied by our subject. He was married in Pensingen, Pomerania, in October, 1866, to Lena Grawe, born in Sophienhove, Pomerania, November 1,1840, and the daughter of Johakeim and Lena Grawe. Johakeim Grawe was the son of John Grawe, and all passed their days in Pomerania. By this union were four children, as follows: Carrie, who married Charles Terwillinger, of Hampshire township, and now resides in California; William, a plasterer by trade, living in Chicago; Charles W., our subject; and Bertha, wife of Robert Leitner, a prosperous business man of Elgin. Religiously Joseph C. Suhr was a member of the Lutheran church, and fraternally a member of the Odd Fellows. His death occurred August 23, 1894, on his farm on section 7, Hampshire township.
The subject of this sketch received his education in the district schools, beginning in Belvidere and ending in Hampshire township. He attended school during the winter season until eighteen years of age. He remained at home assisting his father until the latter's death, when he took charge of the farm for his mother, and in 1896 rented' the place. In 1896 he married Miss Carrie Leitner, a sister of Robert Leitner, and a daughter of John George Leitner, a successful farmer residing in Hampshire township, but who was born in Katolzburg, Bavaria, March 15, 1834, and who learned the trade of a weaver from his father, who lived on a small farm. Mr. Leitner came to America in June, 1852, sailing from Bremen on the Swedish sailing vessel Richard Anderson, which had three hundred and ten passengers and were fifty-four days in making the voyage. Landing at New York, Mr. Leitner there worked some two years, then came west to Kane county, Illinois, and worked for thirteen dollars a month at farm labor for several years. He bought his first eighty acres of land in 1861, to which he has since added sixty acres, making one hundred and forty acres in all. His father, Leonard Leitner, was a weaver by trade, and died in Germany at the age of seventy-seven years. His mother, Sophia (Rupp) Leitner, also died in Germany; which was her native country. John G. Leitner married Sophia Wiedmeyer, born in Marck, Gronegin, Ger-many, September 20, 1842, and they at once came to America. They were the parents of fifteen children, of whom Caroline, wife of our subject, is eighth in order of birth. To our subject and wife one son has been born, Edwin.
The farm on which our subject resides consists of one hundred and seventy acres of fine prairie land, large dwelling house and barns, built by his father. Here he carries on general and dairy farming, usually milking about twenty-five head of cows, the products of which he ships to Chicago. In politics Mr. Suhr is an independent Democrat, and religiously he and his wife are members of the Evangelical church. Fraternally he is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Modern Woodmen of America, and Court of Honor. He is a progressive young farmer, genial and popular with all his acquaintances.
CAPTAIN JOHN F. ELLIOTT, an honored veteran of the Civil war, who has for over forty years been prominently identified with the interests of St. Charles, was born September 9, 1834, near Meadville, Crawford county, Pennsylvania. His father, Thomas Elliott, was a native of Ireland, born in 1811, and when a lad of fourteen years accompanied his brother on his emigration to the new world, first locating in the city of New York, where he was mostly educated. For some years he engaged in merchandising there and for two years he was interested in a manufacturing enterprise in Buffalo, New York. Subsequently he bought a farm in Crawford county, Pennsylvania, which he operated for some years, and then removed to Erie county, New York, residing there until 1852, when he came to Illinois, spending the last years of his life in St. Charles, an honored and highly respected citizen.
In New York city, Thomas Elliott wedded Mary Farrell, who died in March, 1893, having survived him several years, his death having occurred in 1881. While living in Crawford county, Pennsylvania, he had served as deputy sheriff for some time. In the family of this worthy couple were five sons and two daughters who reached years of maturity. Mary A., the eldest, died in childhood; John F. is next in order of birth; Charles is engaged in business in Chicago; George C. is a farmer residing at Seattle, Washington; Theressa and James K. both died unmarried; Henry C. married and settled at Blue Island, Cook county, Illinois, but died at St. Charles, and Lucy died at the age of seventeen years.
John F. Elliott spent his boyhood and youth in Pennsylvania and New York, and received very limited school privileges, being almost wholly self-educated. On the fifth of December, 1855, he became a resident of St. Charles, and having previously learned the mason's trade, he worked at that occupation in both Aurora and Chicago for about twenty years, being employed on many of the early buildings and bridges in this section of the state.
Feeling that his country needed his services during the dark days of the Rebellion, Mr. Elliott enlisted August 12, 1861, in Company K, Thirty-sixth Illinois Volunteer Infantry - the Fox River Regiment - which was raised at Wayne, Illinois, and he was soon afterward appointed first sergeant, serving as such fourteen months.. For faithful service on the field and on the march after the battle of Corinth, he was promoted first lieutenant, and was subsequently commissioned captain. He participated in the engagement at Pea Ridge, Arkansas, the siege of Corinth, and the battles of Perryville, Kentucky, and Stone River, Tennessee. At the last named he was taken prisoner with forty-two others of his regiment, including seven officers, and was sent to Atlanta, where the officers were confined until February 26, 1863, when they were ordered to march to Libby prison, Richmond. While en route Mr. Elliott made his escape from the train at Conyers, Georgia, and after traveling a distance of five hundred miles through the rebel country, reached the Union lines, joining the troops at Corinth, Mississippi, March 26, 1863. Later he rejoined his own regiment at Murfreesboro, Tennessee. On the 18th of May following, through the kindness of General Phil Sheridan, he was detailed for recruiting service in Illinois, and returned to Springfield, where he received his orders. He then opened a recruiting office in St. Charles, but was afterward ordered to report at Springfield, and in September, 1863, was placed in charge of Camp Yates, where he remained from the 14th of that month until March 28, 1864, during which time nineteen thousand, eight hundred recruits were received and transferred to their regiments. He had received only one order for correction from the auditing department at Washington. After making his final report, he was placed in charge of the camp of veteran corps, remaining there until he resigned the commission, on June 4, 1864.
For a few years after his return home, Captain Elliott worked at his trade in Chicago and Kane county. At St. Charles he was married September 6, 1860, to Miss Sarah Clark, a native of Birmingham, England, who came to the United States when a child of eight years, and was reared and educated in St. Charles. Mr. and Mrs. Elliott have three sons living, namely: Charles E., now a carpenter and joiner of San Francisco, California; Ulysses S., also a carpenter and joiner, who is married and resides in St. Charles; and John J., at home with his parents. They have also lost three children: May and Nellie, who both died at the age of fourteen months; and Nettie, who was a successful teacher in St. Charles, and died in early womanhood.
The parents are both active members of the Methodist Episcopal church, of which Mr. Elliott is now a trustee, and has been a member of the official board for some years. He is a prominent member of the Elon J. Farnsworth post No. 456, G. A. R., was its first commander and served in that capacity two or three terms. He is now officer of the day. Politically he is a lifelong Republican, casting his first presiden-tial vote for John C. Fremont in 1856, and four years later supported Abraham Lincoln. He has always taken an active and prominent part in local affairs, was alderman of St. Charles for ten years, and for the long period of twenty-one years was a most efficient and faithful member of the school board. In 1876 he was elected justice of the peace, and with the exception of two years has since served in that capac-ity, being at the present time the oldest justice of the peace in point of service in Kane county. He is also filling the office of police magistrate, and is recognized as one of the most valued and useful citizens of St. Charles. He is a man of sterling worth in all the relations of life, and his name is honorably and inseparably connected with the history of his adopted city.
CHARLES A. STONE is a representative one of the earliest pioneers of Kane county. His father, Isaac Stone, was born in Orford, Grafton county, New Hampshire, January 1, 1811, where he lived until attaining his majority. In 1833, he moved to White Pigeon, Michigan, and in the spring of 1834, came to Kane county, when there was but one house in Elgin, that of James T. Gifford, and it was not finished. He hewed and hauled logs to build the first log house on the west side for Jonathan Kimball, which served as residence, hotel and justice's office. In that house Mr. Stone and Mr. Kimball kept "bach" until the arrival of Mrs. Phinneas Kimball. In the summer of 1835, Mr. Stone made claim to two hundred and forty-six acres which now comprises the farm of our subject. He married Abigail Knapp, born at Homer, New York, about 1820. She is the daughter of James Knapp, of Homer, New York, who died when about eighty years of age. He married Abigail May, born in Hartford, Connecticut, and daughter of Eleazer May. She died at the age of fifty-two years. The grandfather of Mrs. Isaac Stone fought through the Revolutionary war, and while on the way home was killed by the Indians within sight of his house. Isaac and Abigail Stone had four children, two of whom are living - Elvena, now Mrs. S.W. Chapman and Charles A., our subject. The mother is yet living and makes her home with Mr. Chapman in Elgin.
Charles A. Stone, our subject, was born on the farm where he now resides, April 4, 1856. He attended the public schools of Elgin township, and completed his education in the Elgin Academy. He remained at home, assisting his father in the cultivation of the farm until the latter's death, which occurred January 14, 1881, since which time he has been in charge of the place. For years he has made a specialty of stock raising, principally horses, and has charge of many driving horses through the winter, caring for them until spring. The farm is well-improved and in front of his residence is a fine lawn shaded by oak trees of unusual size.
Mr. Stone was married in Clinton, Iowa, December 28, 1880, to Miss Emma E. Fletcher, born in Plato township, and daughter of Lewis and Lydia (Griste) Fletcher, the former a native of England and the latter of Pennsylvania. They were the parents of three children-Emma E., now Mrs. Stone; Albert and Henry, who reside in Elgin. To Mr. and Mrs. Stone five children have been born: Fred, born October 22, 1881; Leon, December 19, 1882; Ray, August 18, 1883; Isla, November 20, 1888; and Vernette, November 25, 1890.
In politics Mr. Stone is a Democrat and a firm believer in free silver. The only office that he has held has been that of school director. As a farmer he ranks among the best in Elgin township, and as a citizen he is held in the highest esteem.
ASA ROSENCRANS, deceased, was one of the representative and honored pioneers of Kane county, with whose early development and prosperity he and his family were prominently identified. The family is of Danish extraction, being founded in this country by two brothers who came from Amsterdam, and the name was formerly spelled Rosenkrans. Representatives of the family have figured largely in American history, one of whom was General Rosencrans, of the Civil war.
Col. John Rosencrans, our subject's grandfather, was a famous Indian fighter, and Commanded a regiment during the French and Indian war from 1755 until 1762. In 1777 he was made a colonel in the war of the Revolution. Filled with the spirit of adventure, he did much toward opening up new country to civilization. He was born in 1724 and was married in 1751 to Miss Margaret De Witt. Their second oldest child, John Rosencrans, was a native of New Jersey, and was a farmer by occupation. The first of the family, who also bore the name of John, died in infancy. These were followed by Jacob; Arrantie, who died in infancy; Arrantie, married Abraham Van Coopen; Alexander, born in 1759, married Mary Mortman; Catherine, born in 1761, who first married a Mr. Woodard, and, after his death, wedded John Pelton; Charrick De Witt, born in 1764, who married Sarah Pelton; Dr. Elijah, born in 1766, who married Cornelia Suffern; Levi, born in 1770, who married Polly Hankinson; Benjamin, who was a twin brother of Levi, and married Margaret Schoonover; Simon, who died in infancy; Dr. Simon, who married Sarah Schoonover; and Polly, who was born in 1777 and died unmarried.
Of this family John Rosencrans was the father of our subject. He married Eliza, beth Van Nest, and they made their home upon a farm in New Jersey, which was afterward purchased by their son Asa, with whom they lived until called totheir final rest. In order of birth their children were as follows: Isaac, Asa, Elijah, Dr. Charrick; Lucy, who married John Dennis, and during her widowhood came from New York to Elgin, Illinois, where she died during the '50s; Catherine, who died unmarried, in 1827; and Garret, a farmer by oc-cupation, who removed from New Jersey to Wisconsin, where his death occurred. All are now deceased.
Asa Rosencrans was born in Sussex county, New Jersey, in 1785, and on reaching manhood he married Miss Jane Cole, also a native of that county, born December 1, 1789, where their children were all born excepting the youngest - Mrs. J. R. Hawes - whose birth occurred in New York. On leaving his native state, Mr. Rosencrans removed to Steuben county, New York, and in the autumn of 1836 sent his two oldest sons, Horace and Frazier, to Illinois to purchase a farm. They were very fortunate in their selection of land, choosing a tract about two and one-half miles from the present public square in Elgin. The following year the family located here, and with the interests of Kane county some of its members have since been identified. In this state Mr. Rosencrans followed farming, but in New Jersey he had worked at the carpenter trade. He was very handy with tools, did considerable cabinet work, and some of the bureaus and other articles of furniture which he manufactured are still in possession of the family, prized as precious heir-looms. He died October 30, 1884, and his wife passed away January 18, 1877. For thirty years her health was very poor, but her mind was very active, and she was very devoted to her family. She and her husband were among the first members of the Congregational church of Elgin, always took an active and prominent part in its work, and will long be remembered for their countless acts of kindness and hospitality, so characteristic of the pioneer settlers. She was a woman of deep piety and great strength of character.
In the family of this worthy couple were the following named children: (1) Horace, born in New Jersey November 15, 1810, married Maria Ingersol, and had nine children, of whom four died in infancy. The others are Horace Edgar, a resident of Marengo, Illinois; Louisa, wife of D. Henderson, a carpenter; Mrs. Sarah Ann Eggleston, of Iowa; and Mrs. Deborah Woodward. The father of these children died in 1893, aged eighty-three years. (2) Frazier, born in 1813, came with his brother Horace to Illinois in 1836. Two years later, with his brothers, he was bathing in the Fox river above where the shoe factory is now located, and one of the younger brothers went beyond his depth. Being unable to swim, Frazier went to his assistance and succeeded in rescuing him, but was himself taken with a cramp and sank to rise no more. His untimely death, by such a heroic deed, cast a pall of gloom not only over the happy family, but over the entire neighborhood, for he was a great favorite among the early settlers, and made friends of all with whom he came in contact. (3) Maria, who was born December 26, 1815, died in the early '50s. She first married James H. Scott, and after his death wedded Jerome B. Smith, by whom she had three children - Helen, Arthur and Alfred - all now deceased. By her first marriage she also had three children - Harriet, Fannie and John Frazier Scott. The last named is the only one now living, his home being in Pittsfield, Illinois. He married Mary Pike and has three children: John, an attorney of Chicago; Daniel, a dentist of that city; and Fannie E., who now makes her home with Mrs. Hawes in Elgin. (4) Dr. Halsey Rosencrans was educated for the medical profession in Chicago under Dr. Brainard, first practiced in Lake Zurick, Wisconsin, for a short time, and then went to Port Lavaca, Texas. His first wife was Anna Eliza Hale, daughter of Dr. Hale, of Dundee. By this union there were three children: Fannie, Lizzie and Cora. For his second wife he married Miss Cynthia E. Bowen September 11, 1873. (5) Garrett, mentioned below. (6) Elizabeth, born in December, [823, was her mother's constant companion for many years. She died in 1892. (7) Catherine, born November 19, 1826, died at the age of twenty-one years. (8) Hiram, born April 29, 1828, is living near Mount Carmel in Southern Utah. (9) Jennie, widow of Moses W. Hawes.
Garrett Rosencrans, fifth in order of birth, was born in New Jersey April 1, 1821, where his boyhood was passed. In the primitive schools of that period he received his elementary education, and at the age of sixteen accompanied his parents on their removal to Illinois, where they settled in Kane county. Here he assisted in the work of the farm until his removal to Elgin. Politically an ardent Republican, he could never be prevailed upon to accept office, with the exception of that of assessor, which he filled with credit for many years. He was also engaged in surveying. He died in Elgin September 10, 1891. Garrett Rosencrans was one of the well known citizens of Elgin, and was actively identified with every enterprise calculated to develop and foster the growth of his adopted city. By his upright and honorable career he won the respect of all.
WILLIAM W. SHERWIN.
There are few men in Elgin in the past quarter of a century who have done more for its commercial interests and its growth and development than the man whose name heads this review. Without vain display he has moved on the even tenor of his way, and yet left his mark on almost everything that has served to make the city of his adoption take front rank among its sister cities of northern Illinois.
Albert Sherwin, father of our subject, who is now a leading business man of Leadville, Colorado, is a native of Vermont, born February 23, 1828, and is a son of Timothy Sherwin, also a native of Vermont. He married Louise Davis, born in Vermont, and a daughter of John and Susan (Billings) Davis, both of the same state. By this union were four children, as follows: William W. and Carrie, twins, the latter dying in childhood; Albert E., who is with his father in Leadville, and Susan B., also at Leadville.
In 1852 Albert Sherwin came west, first locating in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he was engaged in railroad building. From there he moved to Madison, in the same state, where he lived several years. Mrs. Sherwin departed this life in 1865, and he later married Miss Frances M. Lang, by whom he had one son, Fred L., now with his parents in Leadville. In 1868, Mr. Sherwin came with his family to Elgin, and engaged in the manufacture of butter and cheese, which business he carried on for ten years, when he sold out and transferred his business operations to Leadville, Colorado, where he has devoted his energies to mining, smelting and banking, in which he has been successful. He is a man of fine character and sound business principles. In politics he is a Republican.
The subject of this sketch spent a part of his boyhood days in Madison, Wisconsin, and was about thirteen years of age when his parents settled in Elgin. After attending the district schools for a short time he was sent to the Academy. In 1871 he entered the University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, but did not complete the course of study. In 1875, when in the senior class, he gave up his studies and returned home to enter upon a business career.
Forming a partnership with D. E Wood in 1880, under the firm name of Wood & Sherwin, he commenced the manufacture of butter and cheese. This continued until 1890, when he purchased his partner's interest, and has since conducted the business alone. In 1887 he was one of the organizers of the Creamery Package Manufacturing Company, of which he has since been secretary, and also one of its directors.
Mr. Sherwin is a, member of the Board of Trade of Elgin, and has been its treasurer for a number of years. In 1887 he organized the Elgin Milkine Company, which is also incorporated, and of which he is president. This product will in due time add to the reputation of Elgin, and will be one of the most popular articles for the table. Aside from all these interests, he is the holder of considerable realty in his adopted city.
On the 28th of April, 1880, Mr. Sherwin was united in marriage with Miss Carrie M. Town, who was born in Elgin, a daughter of Morris Clinton Town, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work. They reside in a beautiful home, No. 80 South State street, Elgin, the abode of hospitality. Politically, Mr. Sherwin is a Republican. Fraternally he is a thirty-second degree Mason, a member of Monitor lodge, No. 522, F. & A. M.; Loyal L. Munn chapter, No. 96, R. A. M.; Bethel commandery, No. 36, K. T., all of Elgin, and the Consistory of Chicago. Socially he takes an active interest in, and is a member of, the Century Club of Elgin, the Lake Side Park Club, of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin; the Chicago Athletic Club and the University Club of Chicago. With his wife he attends the Congregational Church of Elgin.
THERON J. POTTER, of Aurora, Illinois, is a native of the great Empire state, which has sent many of its best citizens to Illinois, and who have done their full share in making it occupy its present proud position as the third state of the Union. The family are of English descent, some of the ancestors of our subject locating in New England at a very early day, the grandfather, Silas Potter, moving to Dutchess county, where his son, James Potter, was born in 1798. In his native county James Potter married Margaret Thome, also a native of that county. By occupation he was a farmer, in which he continued during his entire life. In 1853 he came to Illinois, settled first in Kane county, where he resided a few years and then moved to DeKalb county, where he spent the last years of his life, dying in 1862. His wife survived him a number of years, dying in 1880. They were the parents of five sons and one daughter, who grew to mature years. The oldest, Silas, married, moved west, spent his last years in Aurora, living a retired life, and where his death occurred; Fannie, who is the widow of Lucian Burr, resides in DeKalb county; William first settled in Kane county and later moved to De Kalb county, where his death occurred; Theron J., of this review; Isaac, a business man of Waterman, Illinois; and Seneca, who is living retired in De Kalb, Illinois.
Theron J. Potter was born in Dutchess county, New York, April 3, 1829. Upon the home farm in his native state he grew to manhood, and as the opportunity was afforded him attended the common schools during the winter months. On attaining his majority he left the parental roof, came west and joined his brother, Silas, in Kane county. Here he was married, September 11, 1851, to Miss Ellen Graves, a daughter of D. T. Graves, a minister of the Baptist church, who was a native of Vermont, but in New York married Electa Babcock, a daughter of Samuel Babcock, who was a colonel in the Revolutionary war. With his family Rev. Graves came west in 1838, settling in Warrensville, Du Page county, Illinois, from which place he moved to Aurora in the fall of 1845. He was an earnest and active minister of the Gospel, and continued in the ministry until his death in 1851. His wife survived him many years, passing away in 1893, at the age of eighty-six years. They were laid to rest in the West side cemetery. Mrs. Potter is one of their family of four daughters. Iwanona J., widow of Richard Breese, resides in Aurora; Ellen, wife of our subject; Mrs. Eliza Freeman, a widow, of Aurora; and Emma, wife of Theodore Howard, of Aurora.
On coming to Aurora, Rev. Graves purchased a farm of one hundred acres lying near the city. After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Potter began their domestic life on that farm, where they resided some three or four years. They then moved to De Kalb county, where Mr. Potter purchased a farm which he operated two years, when he sold out and returned to the old Graves homestead, having purchased the interests of the heirs. He at once began its improvement, and in due time built a large, neat residence, barn and other outbuildings, making of it one of the most desirable farms in the township. He continued to work the farm until 1883, when he removed to Aurora, but soon after purchased a farm lying partly in Kendall county, and partly in Sugar Grove township, Kane county, which he operated some three or four years. In 1889 he purchased residence property in Aurora, and has since been living a retired life. Mr. and Mrs. Potter have reared three children, of whom Fannie is the wife of Lewis Paull, a stockdealer of Aurora; Arthur J., married and in business in Aurora; and Minnie E., wife of Arthur Winteringham, representing the Covenant Mutual Insurance Company, of Galesburg, Illinois.
In his political views, Mr. Potter is a stanch advocate of the principles of the Republican party. Voting first for John C. Fremont in 1856, he has continued to vote for the nominees of that party from that time to the present. Both he and his wife are consistent members of the New England Congregational church of Aurora. For forty-eight years he has resided in Kane and DeKalb counties, while his wife has been a resident sixty years. In the development of Kane county he has borne his part well, and no family in Kane county is held in higher esteem. Honest and upright in character, he has made many friends throughout Kane and De Kalb counties.
ALBAN L. MANN, M. D., who is successfully engaged in the practice of medicine and surgery in Elgin, with office in the Spurling block, was born in that city on the 22d of September, 1859, and is a son of Michael and Margaret (O'Connor) Mann, natives of Westmeath and Queens counties, Ireland, respectively. The paternal grandfather spent his entire life in that country, where he died at the age of seventy-two years. In his family were four sons and four daughters. Michael O'Connor, the maternal grandfather, came to America in 1852 and lived for a time near Syracuse, New York. From that place he came to Elgin, where he conducted a blacksmith shop for many years. He died here in 1893 at the advanced age of eighty-eight years. He had a family of two sons and three daughters.
In 1852 the Doctor's parents also crossed the Atlantic and at once became residents of Elgin, where the father was a harness-maker for some years. During the Civil war, he served as a telegraph operator at the West Elgin depot, and subsequently followed carpentering for a number of years, but for the last ten or twelve years of his life he was engaged in commercial pursuits. By reason of his business acumen and the exercise of thrift and frugality, he accumulated considerable property, being in comfortable circumstances at the time of his death, which occurred in October, 1895, at the age of sixty-three years, resulting from an accident sustained by being thrown from a cart while breaking a colt. His widow still survives him and lives at the old homestead with her daughters. In the family are eight children, four sons and four daughters, namely: Alban L.; Blanche; Godfrey; Agnes, wife of Frank Hurlburt; John; Maggie; James and Mary.
Dr. Mann acquired his literary education in the schools of Elgin, and at the age of seventeen entered the drug store of Kelley & Hart for the purpose of acquainting himself with medicine preparatory to entering a medical college. After five years in their employ he matriculated at Bennett Medical College of Chicago, where he graduated in March, 1883. For about a year he practiced his profession at Silver Reef Mining Camp, Utah, and then returned to Elgin, where he has since continuously engaged in practice.
On the 7th of January, 1887, Dr. Mann married Miss Bertha S. Kohn, a daughter of Charles and Dorothea (Andorff) Kohn. They now have two children-Alban W. and Marguerite - and the family have a pleasant home at No. 392 Chicago street.
Socially the Doctor belongs to the Masonic fraternity, the Modern Woodmen of America, the Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Royal Arcanum, and the Knights of the Maccabees, and he is also a member of the Illinois State Eclectic Medical Society, and the Association of Military Surgeons of the United States, belonging to the last named by reason of having served for five years as surgeon, with the rank of major, in the Third Infantry, Illinois National Guard. Politically the Doctor is independent, but usually votes with the Republican party, and for three years he served as city physician.
PETER McKINNELL, a farmer residing near Udina, in Elgin township, was born June 26,1825, in Kirkkinner parish, Wigtonshire, Scotland, where his early life was passed. In his native land he engaged in farming, and continued in that occupation until his emigration to America. Early in December, 1854, he sailed from Liverpool, on "The Driver," but his vessel was wrecked on the Irish coast, where he was detained two weeks. He re-embarked at Liverpool on the vessel "Constellation" Sunday, December 31, 1854, and after a voyage of four weeks reached New York Saturday, January 27, 1855, and landed Monday, the 29th. By rail he came direct to Chicago, but owing to heavy snowstorms they were a week on the way. From Chicago he came by rail to Elgin, where he arrived February 4, five weeks from time of sailing. After a short time spent in Elgin he moved to the northeast corner of Plato township, near where McQueen's station is now located, where he lived one year. At the suggestion of a cousin in business there, he removed to Peoria and worked for him one year. He then moved to the farm of his cousin near EI Paso, Woodford county, which he cultivated five years.
In the spring of 1862 Mr. McKinnell returned to Elgin, and for two and a half years worked out on farms to get money on which to again start for himself. For one year he had charge of the dairy farm of Martin McNeal, and for one year the farm of Paul B. Ring. He then rented the D. C. Schofield farm two years, and then the large farm of George Stringer, now deceased, on which he worked fifteen years. Although they had no written contract, and only a verbal agreement, during the fifteen years of his tenancy no disagreement ever arose between him and Mr. Stringer. In the spring of 1883 he purchased his present farm of eighty-six acres. This he has since continued to work, together with twenty-five acres that he leased. The farm is used for grain and dairy purposes.
Peter McKinnell is the son of James McKinnell, a native of the same parish in which he was born, and who was a farmer who lived and died in his native land about 1862, at the age of seventy-seven years. James McKinnell married Janet Hawthorn, born in the parish of Newton Stewart, and daughter of John and Elizabeth (Cleaves) Hawthorn, of the same parish. They were the parents of eight children, of whom our subject was the second in order of birth, and the only one to come to the United States. One brother went to Tasmania, and one to Buenos Ayres, South America.
Our subject was married in the parish of Kirkkinner, April 20, 1854, to Miss Jessie McDowell, of the same parish, daughter of Charles McDowell, a farmer and large stock dealer, who died when Jessie was two years old. He married Miss Ellen Patterson, daughter of James and Janet (McHarg) Patterson. Mrs. McKinnell, who was born February 2, 1834, was sixth in a family of seven children, two of whom came to America - John McDowell, deceased; and Mary, wife of William Kirkpatrick, of East Plato.
To our subject and wife nine children have been born: Ellen Jessie, born March 26, 1855, is now the wife of Dr. William Bishop, of St. Charles; Agnes, born August 3, 1856, is the wife of William E. Marshall, of East Plato; Eliza Jane, born March 20, 1858, died November 26, 1862; Mary, born August 24, 1860, is the wife of Fred J. Marshall, of Plato township; Anna, born January 31, 1863; James, born March 18, 1866; one who died in infancy; George, born July 13, 1875; and Hattie, born February 14, 1880, died December 16, 1885.
Mr. and Mrs. McKinnell were reared in the Presbyterian faith, but are now members of the Congregational church at Udina, in which he for a time was a deacon. In politics he is a Republican, but would never accept office, save that of school trustee, which position he filled for some years.
SMITH YOUNGES, an energetic and thriving farmer residing on section 33, Elgin township, was born in the village of Amsterdam, Schoharie county, New York, October 17, 1852. His father, Charles Younges, was also a native of Schoharie county, where he married Miss Magdeline Lingenfelter, a native of Amsterdam, New York. They were the parents of six children, as follows: William, living on the old homestead, near Plato; Peter, residing in Bigelow, Kansas; James, deceased; Elizabeth, wife of W. W. McDonald, of East Plato; Mary, wife of Dell McCarthy, of Watseka, Illinois; and Smith, our subject.
Charles Younges was a farmer and stock trader during his entire life. He was a hustling, energetic man, who did all it was possible for any one man to do. He came to Kane county in 1860, but did not remove his family here until 1861. He first purchased the Duncan Frazer farm in St. Charles township, but seeing a more desirable piece of land in Plato township, forfeited what had been paid on the Frazer farm and bought two hundred and ten acres near East Plato, where he spent the remainder of his life. He also bought the Sovereign farm in Plato township, consisting of one hundred and twenty acres, and also the Payton farm, of one hundred and sixty acres, in Elgin township. He was politically, a Republican and served as school director many terms and also supervisor of his township. His death occurred January 3, 1867, at age of forty-eight years.
Smith Younges was eleven years of age when he came with his parents to Kane county. His education began in the common schools of Amsterdam, New York, and completed in the public schools of Kane county. At the age of nineteen he began life for himself, and worked by the month on farms for three years. He then rented one hundred acres from his mother which he cultivated three years, at the expiration of which time he rented the farm that he now owns for three years.
Having been quite successful he purchased the place, which consists of two hundred acres of finely improved land. He rebuilt the dwelling house and also the barn, making the latter thirty-six by eighty feet and also built a stable twenty-six by thirty feet. When the railroad cut through his farm, he bought seventeen acres where his present residence now stands, which with that part of his former farm north of the railroad track, makes one farm, while the south part on which is the old residence, makes a good tenant farm. Two additions have since been built to his residence, and he has also erected a new horse barn thirty by thirty-four feet, wagon-house, twenty by twenty-four, cattle sheds, sixteen by twenty, and cattle barn, thirty-eight by eighty-two feet. Youngdale Station, on the Illinois Central railroad, is located on his farm, and there is also a postoffice at the station.
Mrs. Smith Younges
Mr. Younges was married in St. Charles township, December 25, 1874, to Miss Carrie Ferson, born in that township, and the daughter of Parker and Aurilia (Clark) Ferson, natives of Vermont and New York respectively. By this union four children have been born: Clyde, who is assisting his father in the handling of stock; Nellie, Maude and Libbie; Maude is attending the Elgin Academy; and Libbie, who is attending the district school in Elgin.
Politically Mr. Younges is a Republican, and has served as school director. Fraternally he is a member of Elgin lodge, No. 117, A. F. & A. M. He is a good business man and is dealing very extensively in stock, buying and shipping from the west more milch cows for the home and Chicago markets than any dealer in this county. He is a good judge of stock and a careful buyer, and he is meeting with deserved success.
JOSEPH VOLLOR, an honored veteran of the Civil war, and one of the most highly respected citizens of Elgin, was for many years actively identified with the business interests of the city, but is now living retired at his pleasant home 169 South Channing street.
He is a native of Canada, born in Toronto, October 12, 1836, and is a son of Joseph and Ellen (Donahue) Vollor, the former a native of Portsmouth, England, and the latter of Belfast, Ireland. For about twenty years the father owned and commanded a vessel on Lake Ontario, and for several years carried passengers and the mail between Toronto and Rochester, New York. During the "McKenzie Rebellion", as he was about to leave Toronto, one of his passengers (a friend of McKenzie) was arrested and his baggage taken to the Mayor's office. Capt. Vollor followed and while addressing the mayor was requested by his honor to take off his hat; he refused, and informed the mayor that he bought the hat, paid for it, and would wear it; for that offence he was committed to jail for 24 hours. Capt. Vollor took the first vessel through the Welland Canal, also landed at Grand Haven, Mich., the machinery for the first saw-mill erected in that section. His wife died in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1847 and he in 1851, at Batavia, Illinois.
The first ten years of his life Joseph Vollor spent in Toronto, where he attended school to a limited extent and then accompanied his parents on their removal to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. After eighteen months in that city the family, father and three children, moved to Chicago and six months later to Batavia, Illinois. Upon .the death of his father Joseph Vollor was taken by Spencer Johnson, a farmer, to keep until he became of age, the understanding being that he would attend school three months each winter, and when twenty-one would receive one hundred-dollars and two suits of clothes. The last winter he attended school but four weeks, as he had been notified that he would have to "speak a piece" before the school on Friday afternoon. He concluded that he was not cut out for an orator, and when Friday noon came around he gathered up his books, went home and cut stove wood the balance of the winter.
In 1859 he was taken with the Pike's Peak fever, and with his hard earned savings invested in teams, provisions and outfit necessary for gold mining, full of hope and with big letters, "Pike's Peak or Bust," on his wagon cover, he started. Did not get half way before thousands were met coming back, hungry and foot sore, and he and his companion had to join the procession and return. When the outfit was disposed of he had but little left of his seven years hard earnings, and felt that he was "busted." In 1860 he worked a farm on shares, and crops being extra good he cleared about $400, which he took with him to Chicago in September and went through a course in Bryant & Stratton's Commercial College. He deposited his money in a bank and lost something over $200 by failure.
At the outbreak of the Civil War Mr. Vollor was residing at Batavia and enlisted under first call for troops, but company was not accepted ; enlisted twice afterwards and was finally, on the 1st day of August, 1861, mustered in as fourth corporal Company I, Forty-Second Illinois Infantry. In September the regiment proceeded to St. Louis, Missouri, and for a time was quartered in Benton Barracks, where daily drills were had, and arms were furnished. From Benton Barracks took boat for Jefferson City, where the regiment received twenty-four six-muled teams-two for each company and four for headquarters, including hospital. After receiving transportation and equipment regiment was started on a tramp for Springfield, Missouri, after rebel army, under Price. From Springfield tramped back to Smithton, which was headquarters for the regiment. Mr. Vollor's company (I) was Stationed at Farmers' City, about two miles farther west, and patrolled the railroad between there and Sedalia. Col. Webb and many of the larger and apparently strongest men of the regiment died during the winter. Company I being alone, some of the members would go out nights and confiscate bee-hives, geese, chickens and other good things. In February, 1862, started on march to St. Louis, and there took boats for Cairo and crossed the river from there to Fort Holt, Kentucky. Fort Donelson prisoners had just arrived at Cairo when Forty-second reached there. In a short time were ordered to Columbus, Kentucky, and were the first infantry to enter the place.
After remaining at Columbus a short time accompanied the gunboat fleet down the river to Island No. 10, where mortar boats amused the Johnnies for several weeks by throwing fifteen-inch shells over the island every fifteen minutes-only damage to the enemy being the breaking of one leg of a mule. The gunboats did a great deal of firing at a battery in bend of river on the Tennessee shore, but did little damage. Colonel G. W. Roberts, of the Forty-second Illinois, became restive at waste of time and ammunition, and offered to take fifty men of his regiment-if boats would be furnished him-and go down and spike the battery. Boats were furnished, and he went down on the night of April 1, 1862, during a terrible wind and rain storm, and spiked the battery-he being the first man ashore and driving the first spike. A few nights after a gunboat ran by the island, later others followed, and on April 7th the Rebels surrendered about sixty-five hundred prisoners, seven thousand small arms and one hundred pieces of artillery.
After surrender of Island No. 10, regiment proceeded to Fort Pillow, remained a short time, and then took boats for Hamburg Landing, Mississippi, to take part in siege of Corinth. During siege, engaged in battle of Farmington, where the regiment made the Johnnies a present of all knapsacks and contents. Mr. Vollor had in his quite a sized book, in which he had been keeping a record of daily experiences. Thinks if he had the book now he would keep it under lock, as there were things recorded that might not read well at the present time.
Flag of Forty-second Illinois was first to float over Corinth after the Rebels left. Followed Rebels to Rienzi and in few days returned to Camp Blue Springs near Corinth. While there, were furnished with "pup Tents" in exchange for Sibley's; ten companies were also furnished with Austrian rifles and saber bayonets in exchange for the almost worthless Springfield muskets, received at St. Louis. From Blue Springs regiment with two pieces of artillery was ordered to Cortland, Alabama, and remained there from July 25th until September 3d, 1862, when were started on forced march for Nashville, Tennessee, and on the way took part in a skirmish with Rebel cavalry at Columbia, losing one man killed while Rebels lost eight killed and forty-five wounded. The march to Nashville was a hard one, the weather' being very hot, and the broken stone roads caused many blistered feet. Mr. Vollor had, on one day, three blisters on bottom of one foot and two on other. He was the only non-commissioned officer (except the orderly) of Company I to get into camp with the colors. A sergeant was called for picket and there being none in camp Mr. Vollor (a corporal) had to go. He considered that he was punished for keeping up on the march.
The Forty-second occupied Nashville during the race between Buell and Bragg's armies through Kentucky. Being cut off from base of supplies army rations were short, but by foraging, a good supply of sweet potatoes and sometimes fresh pork was procured. After the return of the army, then under command of Gen. Rosecrans, Col. Roberts, who was very ambitious and opposed to doing garrison duty, requested that his regiment (the Forty-second Illinois) be allowed to join the army then preparing to move on Murfreesboro. His wish was granted and he was assigned to the command of a brigade, composed of the Twenty-second, Twenty-seventh, Forty-second and Fifty-first Illinois regiments, in Sheridan's division of the Twentieth Corps, commanded by Alex. McDowell McCook.
On December 26, 1862, the army under Rosecrans started on a winter campaign toward Murfreesboro. The rain came down in torrents all day and a bitter cold wind blew from the northeast. The condition and feelings of the men when night came can be imagined better than described. There were no tents for shelter that night, and no fires could be built to make coffee. With .plenty of hot coffee the boys could endure almost any exposure-without it life was hardly worth living. Mr. Vollor says he will never forget that night. Sitting on the wet ground, at the roots of a large tree, with cape of overcoat over his head, he would doze for a short time and would awake so cold that he had to get up and walk around. That was kept up during the .night. On December 30th arrived within two and a half miles of Murfreesboro and had skirmish with the enemy in which quite a number of the Forty-second were killed and wounded. Rebel cavalry had captured and destroyed a large number of wagons loaded with rations, and the morning of the 31st found the men with empty haversacks, preparing for one of the bloodiest battles of the war. A little corn meal had been secured the day before and some mush had been made by some of the Forty-second. As the men of Sheridan's Division stood under arms at 3 o'clock that winter morning and listened to the reading of orders from General Rosecrans little did they realize what they would pass through before night. The Forty-second Illinois took a conspicuous part in the battle, and while regiment was falling back to escape capture - the Rebels coming in on their flank - Mr. Vollor was hit on foot by a spent ball, also on right elbow, his gun dropping from his hands. Although the Rebels were close on to him he stopped and picked his gun up and by doing so came near being captured. He was unable to use his arm for a week or more but kept his position with his company. Three balls passed through his clothing during the battle. His name is on Roll of Honor of Army of the Cumberland for meritorious service, was also promoted from Fourth Corporal of Company I, to quartermaster sergeant of the regiment.
During a foraging expedition near Murfreesboro, a company of Rebels attacked the foraging party, but were dispersed, some of the enemy being discovered in the woods for the purpose of picking off Union gunners. Mr. Vollor and three men went out - got in their rear and brought two of them in, and for this action received commendation. When the army moved out from Murfreesboro, the objective point being Chattanooga, Mr. Vollor, as quartermaster-sergeant, was in charge of his regimental train. The crossing of Raccoon and Lookout mountains was difficult and dangerous. While ascending Lookout, after dark, a six-mule team, a short distance ahead of Mr. Vollor's wagon-became frightened at some object and unmanageable and went off the side of the mountain, which was very steep. Mules were killed and kindling wood made of wagon. After reaching top of mountain Mr. Vollor discovered a sutler's wagon a few wagons ahead of his, and during the darkness he succeeded in borrowing a number of boxes of sardines, cans of fruit and other eatables. On 19th and 20th of September, occurred battle of Chickamauga, where Forty-second Illinois lost in killed, twenty-eight; wounded, one hundred and twenty-eight; prisoners, thirty-six, out of a total of less than four hundred and fifty. The greater part of loss occurred inside of thirty minutes. After Chickamauga the Army of the Cumberland was shut up around Chattanooga-on short rations- and in danger of starvation. Ten thousand horses and mules starved to death, and according to General Grant's report there were not horses enough in the Army of the Cumberland to haul a single piece of artillery. General Grant telegraphed Thomas: "Hold Chattanooga at all hazards." He replied, "We will hold it till we starve." Mr. Vollor says he felt as if a person standing in front of him could see his backbone. He saw men pick kernels of corn out of mud and manure, and parch it to eat. The arrival of Eleventh and Twelfth Corps saved the army from starvation.
On November 25th, the battle of Mission Ridge was fought, and resulted in a glorious victory. General Grant says in his memoirs, to Sheridan's prompt movement the Army of the Cumberland and the nation are indebted for the bulk of the capture of prisoners, artillery and small arms that day. Mr. Vollor followed the troops in the charge and helped take care of wounded, although his position did not require him to be there. Shortly after the Fourth Corps was sent to Knoxville to the relief of Burnside, and Mr. Vollor was detailed to take charge of tools of his brigade. Remained in East Tennessee during the winter without tents, but little clothing and short rations. Bran bread was a luxury. On the memorable cold January 1, 1864, while bivouacked in the woods - with two inches of snow, and mercury three degrees below zero, a majority of the Forty-second re-enlisted for another three years, and Mr. Vollor again put his name down as a private of Company I.
On the way to Knoxville, the home of a Rebel colonel was passed. In a storeroom a barrel of sorghum syrup was found, and soon a line of blue coats with tin cups were going in the back door, dipping the cups in the barrel and rushing out through the front parlor with syrup dripping all over the carpet. It was the first house Mr. Vollor had entered to take anything. He had sympathy for the female Rebel who was calling his comrades all sorts of names. Mr. Vollor, before reaching Knoxville, picked up a very fine pair of mules, which had been used for a carriage team. He was offered four hundred dollars for them by a sutler, but refused, and put them in one of his teams.
In February the regiment started for Chattanooga on their way home on a thirty-days' furlough. Next morning, after reaching Chattanooga, the fine mules were missing, and Mr. Vollor had to pick up a pair that had been turned out to die, in order to have the right number to turn over to the post quartermaster. He regretted that he did not take the four hundred dollars. The regiment took the furlough, and returned to Chattanooga the latter part of April, and became a part of Sherman's army for the Atlanta campaign. Mr. Vollor was again appointed quartermaster-sergeant, and acted as quartermaster during the campaign, the quartermaster being sick at Chattanooga. The Forty-second Illinois took part in the following engagements during the Atlanta campaign-Rocky Face Ridge, Resaca, Adairsville, New Hope Church, Pine Mountain, Kenesaw Mountain, Peach Tree Creek, Siege of Atlanta, Jonesboro and Lovejoy Station. After the capture of Atlanta, and before Sherman started on his march to the sea, the Fourth Corps was sent back to Chattanooga, and the Forty-second was stationed for a while at Bridgeport, and from there went to Pulaski, Tennessee; remained there until Hood started in on his invasion of Tennessee, and fell back with the rest of the army toward Nashville. The Forty-second received a number of new recruits at Spring Hill, several of whom were killed during some severe fighting at points, the enemy having made attempt to capture trains that were packed by the roadside. Trains were on the move all night toward Franklin, and many times during the night were fired on by Rebel cavalry. The next day (30th) some Rebel cavalry with blue overcoats came in from a crossroad and commenced firing, killing a number of mules and burning wagons. Some of the drivers became demoralized and jumped from their mules and sought shelter. One driver was stopped by Mr. Vollor threatening to shoot him. The driver thanked him afterward for keeping him from being a coward.
November 3, 1864, was fought the battle of Franklin-for the number of men engaged and the time it lasted, the hardest fought battle of the war. Rebel loss, one thousand, seven hundred and fifty killed, three thousand, eight hundred wounded, among them six generals killed and six wounded. Union loss was light, comparatively. During the night fell back to Nashville and remained until December 15 and 16, when battle of Nashville was fought. While there the colonel of the Forty-second sent to the governor for a commission as first lieutenant for Mr. Vollor, but it was not granted. During battle of Nashville, while riding through a cornfield, Mr. Vollor was fired at, ball cutting off corn stalk near his horse's head. From Nashville regiment pursued the enemy about eighty miles to Lexington, and then marched to Decatur, Alabama, leaving there April 1, 1865, for East Tennessee, it being thought that Lee's army might undertake to come through. Heard of Lee's surrender and Lincoln's assassination while there. The Forty-second returned to Nashville, remained until June, and then, with balance of Fourth Corps, embarked for New Orleans, en route to Texas, it being thought at the time that there might be some trouble with Maximilian. Mr. Vollor was left to follow with transportation and camp equipage, and when he reached Cairo he invested fifty dollars in condensed milk at one dollar per can and a lot of soft bread, and for a few days he and the men who were with him lived high. Arrived at Vicksburg afternoon of July 4, remaining until next day. In evening attended a negro dance. It was terribly hot, and concluded it was pleasanter in open air. Reached New Orleans about 10th and found regiment on bank of river below the city. A short time after, embarked for Port Lavaca, Texas, where remained a short time and afterward went into camp some distance out on prairie, and were finally mustered out on December 15, 1865, and started for home. Total enrollment of Forty-second Illinois was one thousand, six hundred and twenty-two, of whom one hundred and eighty-one were killed, four hundred and seventy-three wounded, two hundred and six died of disease and accident and thirty-three in Rebel prisons. The Forty-second is numbered as one of Colonel Fox's three hundred fighting regiments. While in Texas Mr. Vollor, received commission as first lieutenant and quartermaster. Were in New Orleans on Christmas eve and needed mosquito netting to protect us from the pests. Were paid off at Springfield on January 10, 1866, nearly four and one-half years after first muster. Mr. Vollor is proud to say that he has no hospital record, being one of those who escaped being shot and had little sickness. Although has at times been laid up for several weeks by rheumatism and having heart trouble, has not drawn a pension.
After the war Mr. Vollor returned to Batavia for a time, and then was employed as bookkeeper in a wholesale house in Chicago. Later went into wholesale wooden-ware, cordage and notion business, and was cleaned out by the big fire of 1871. In 1872 went to Portland, Maine, and for two and one-half years had charge of the business of Curtis & Son, and then returned to Elgin and for many years did an extensive business as a manufacturer of chewing gum. Mr. Vollor is one of those who believes "the laborer is worthy of his hire," and always paid nearly double the wages that any other manufacturers of chewing gum did.
In 1868 Mr. Vollor married Miss Martha C. Waldron, a daughter of Andrew J. and Calista S. (Smith) Waldron, and to them have been born three children: Joseph Truman died in Portland, Dunbar W. married Grace Bristol, of Galesburg, Illinois, and has one daughter, Madelin. He is now employed in the Home National Bank of Elgin. Helen is with her parents. Mrs. Vollor is a member of the Universalist church, and a most estimable lady.
Since casting his first vote for John C. Fremont-first candidate of the Republican party for the presidency-Mr. Vollor has been unwavering in his support of the G. O. P. He is one of the most prominent members of Veteran post 49, G. A. R., of Elgin; served four years as its quartermaster, two years a junior vice-commander and three years as commander. He is also a member of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion, and at the present time is president of the Veteran Republican Club, which is composed of old soldiers, also president of Forty-second Illinois Veteran Association. He served on staff of Commander-in-chief Adams, and on the staff of three different department commanders. His loyalty as a citizen and his devotion to the interests of his adopted country, have been among his most prominent characteristics. He is more thoroughly American than many who are native born. The community is fortunate that numbers him among its citizens.
JABEZ SWITZER, now living a retired life in Plato township, traces his descent back to one of three brothers of Swiss origin, who were residing in France and were compelled, on account of religious persecutions, to flee the country during the time of Louis XIV. They enlisted under the banner of William, Prince of Orange, were officers, and participated in the battles of Boyne, and were allotted portions of the territory for their services. From one of these brothers descended John Switzer, who settled in Tipperary. His son, Martin, was the first of the family to come to America. In 1803, Martin Switzer married Mary Maurice, and in July, 1804, came to America, settling at Elizabeth, New Jersey, where he lived until after the war of 1812. He then moved to New York, and later, in 1820, to Canada, where he secured one hundred acres of land and engaged in farming. Martin Switzer was the father of Samuel, whose third son, Samuel, was the father of Jabez Switzer, of this sketch.
One of the ancestors of Mary Maurice was among the supporters of Cromwell in 1640.
Jabez Switzer was born near Streetsville, Ontario, Canada, August 7, 1848, and was ninth in a family of ten children. One year later his parents came to Kane county, locating three miles from St. Charles. On his father's farm he grew to manhood, and received his education in the country schools, supplemented by an attendance in the St. Charles High School. His mother died in Canada while he was an infant, and his father in 1853, when he was but five years old. His brother was appointed his guardian, and with him he remained until he was eighteen years of age, when he married and rented a farm near Chebanse, Iroquois county, Illinois, one year, and one year near Kankakee. He then returned to Kane county, and for a short time worked for his brother, when, in 1867, he came to his present farm on section 11, Plato township, which he rented one year on shares, and three years for cash. In 1871 he bought the farm, consisting of one hundred and sixty acres, and for some years engaged in raising grain principally, but for the past few years has devoted himself to dairying. On the first of March, 1898, he retired from active farming, leasing his farm to his son, Ira J., who is now in control of the place.
Jabez Switzer was married, February 14, 1866, in St. Charles, Kane county, to Miss Elizabeth Banks, a native of England, who came to America at the age of ten years, lived in Canada four years, and then came to St. Charles, Kane county. She is the daughter of Robert and Hannah (Butler) Banks, the latter being a daughter of John Butler, who died when she was quite young, so she knew but little of his ancestry. Hannah Banks dying, her husband married Rachel Swales, daughter of William and Elinor Swales, by whom Hannah was reared. A drinking glass that belonged to them is treasured by Mrs. Switzer for its age and associations.
Robert Banks was born at Water, Yorkshire, England, in 1814, and died July 11, 1877. He was a man of fine education, a writer of no little literary ability, and a teacher for some years. In England he was a mill-owner and lived at Brampton, near Scarborough. In emigrating to America, he sailed from Liverpool, on the 21st of March, 1849, and was six weeks in making the voyage, which was a stormy one, the captain declaring it the worst that he had experienced in twenty years. At one time the ship was on fire, and the passengers were greatly alarmed. They landed at New York and in a few days went to Toronto, Canada, and later to Simcoe county, where he settled, and bought two hundred acres of land. After residing there three years, he sold out and came to Illinois, and rented a farm near Fayville. He also taught school near Huntley. Later he removed to St. Charles, and worked at milling until he retired from active life. Of the ten children born to Robert Banks and wife, all attained maturity and six of these still survive.
To Jabez and Elizabeth Switzer, thirteen children were born, nine of whom are yet living: (1) Ray, deceased. (2) Hortense, who married E. D. Pease, of Elgin, by whom she has five children: Helen J., Minnie L., Elizabeth E., Clarence D. and Glenn I. (3) Joseph Robert, who married Emma Robinson, by whom he has one son, Robert J., and they now reside in Chicago. (4) Ira J. married Mamie Brady, born in North Plato, and daughter of Henry and Lily (Collins) Brady, and they have one son, Arthur Walter, born June 20, 1895. Ira J. Switzer attended the Pingree Grove School, Elgin Academy and Drew's Busi-ness College. Fraternally he is a member of Pingree Grove Camp, No.655, M. W. A. (5) Salina E., who married Charles Campbell, by whom she had one son, Lawrence C. Her husband is now deceased. (6) Grace A., deceased. (7) Blanche. (8) Mabel, deceased. (10) Eva May. (11) Minnie, deceased. (12) Alice I. (13) Boyd.
Mr. Switzer is a member of Oak Leaf Tent, No. 22,508, K. O. T. M. of Pingree Grove. Politically he is a Democrat and served some years as school director. As a citizen he has done his full share in develop-ing the material interests of Kane county.
EDWARD S. SMITH, who is engaged in the real estate, insurance and loan business, at Batavia, has been a resident of Kane county for a period of forty-five years. He is a native of New York, born in Essex county, on the borders of Lake Champlain, March 20, 1832, and is the son of Elias Smith, born in Washington county, New York, of which his father was an early settler. Elias Smith, who was a soldier in the war of 1812, for which service he received a land warrant, grew to manhood in his native county and there married Miss Zeruiah Reed, also a native of Washington county, New York. Soon after their marriage, they moved to Moriah, Essex county, near Lake Champlain, where the remainder of their lives were spent, and where they reared their family, and where they both died, the father at the age of eighty-three years, the mother at the age of forty-one years.
Until the age of fifteen years, our subject remained under the parental roof, and received his education in the public schools and the academy. He then went to Saratoga, and spent one year, then accepted a position in the mercantile establishment of J. & J. H. Peck & Company, of Burlington, Vermont, where he received his business education, remaining with them five years.
In 1853, a young man who had just passed his majority, he came to Batavia, Illinois, and for the first year was in the grain business, as the junior member of the firm of Rogers & Smith. He was then associated with Mr. Harris Hoyt, in the manufacture of barrels by machinery for about two years, the business proving financially disastrous. For a time he was connected with various enterprises and for many years agent of the American Express Company. In 1861, he was appointed by Montgomery Blair, postmaster-general under President Lincoln, as postmaster of Batavia, and by successive reappointments served a period of twenty-five years, under seven different presidents. That he made a satisfactory officer is attested by his long continued service.
Mr. Smith was united in marriage, in Batavia, Illinois, April 15, 1861, to Jane M. Mallory, a native of Penn Yan, Yates county, New York, who came to Batavia, Illinois, when fifteen years of age, and was educated in the schools of Batavia and Evanston, Illinois; her father, Smith L. Mallory, was a prominent railroad contractor. By this union are five children, as follows: Elinor Louise, now the wife of Rev. P. C. Walcott, of Highland Park, Lake county, Illinois; Mary W., wife of Fred H. Burke, a resident of Batavia; Edward M., who is associated with his father in the insurance and real estate business. Frank P., who resides at home; and Jessie M., who is now one of the teachers of the West Batavia public schools.
Mr. Smith first began the insurance business in 1859, but abandoned it after receiving his appointment as postmaster. When he retired from that office, he again resumed the insurance business, in which he has continued to the present time. In July, 1890, he was appointed to a position in the sub-treasury, by Colonel Dustin, and served during Harrison's administration. He has been identified with the Republican party since its organization, and has never missed casting his vote for the presidential nominee of that party, up to the present time. In addition to the offices already mentioned as held by him, he has served as town clerk, village trustee and other minor positions. In the various conventions of his party he has frequently served as a delegate, and in them has wielded considerable influence. Religiously, he is liberal in his views but attends the Methodist Episcopal church, of which his wife is a member, while some of the family are Protestant Episcopal. Fraternally, he is a Master Mason and for many years served as secretary of the lodge. As a citizen he is held in the highest esteem and is popular with all classes in the community.
JACOB R. GORHAM.
In the respect that is accorded to men who have fought their way to success through unfavorable environments we find an unconscious recognition of the intrinsic worth of a character which cannot only endure so rough a test, but gain new strength through the discipline. The following history sets forth briefly the steps which our subject, now one of the substantial citizens of St. Charles, overcame the disadvantages of his early life. Coming to this section of the state November 18, 1852, he was for many years actively identified with the farming and stock raising interests of Du Page and Kane counties, but having secured an ample fortune, he has now laid aside all business cares.
Mr. Gorham was born September 26, 1830, in Dutchess county, New York, a son of William Gorham, whose birth occurred in Stratford, Connecticut, about 1780. His grandfather, Stephen Gorham, was a native of France, and came to the new world with General LaFayette to aid the colonies in their struggle for independence during the Revolutionary war. Subsequently he located in Stratford, Connecticut, and for the remainder of his life was a pilot, holding a government license, which allowed him to conduct vessels through Hell Gate. In his family were five sons who were reared in Connecticut. Two of them located in Great Barrington, Massachusetts; Louis, a farmer by occupation and Le Grand, a miller and hotel keeper; Kirk was a tailor by trade; Benjamin went to the West Indies. Two of these never married.
William Gorham, our subject's father, completes the family. At an early day he removed to Pawling, Dutchess county, New York, where he established two tan yards, being a tanner and currier by trade, and also engaged in farming and merchandizing with good success, accumulating a nice estate. He married Sarah Holloway, a native of Pawling, and a daughter of Justin Holloway, who was also born in Dutchess county. Our. subject's great-grandfather Parks, on the maternal side, was a Revolutionary soldier, and lived to the advanced age of ninety years. Mr. and Mrs. Gorham came to Illinois and spent their last years in Will county, the father dying during the Civil war. The mother survived him a few years, passing away at the age of eighty-four years.
In their family were the following children: Hannah Etta married a Mr. Dodge, and first located in Dutchess county, New York, but later came to Will county, Illinois, where she died; Mary Ann is the widow of R. H. Leake, and is a resident of St. Charles; Akin H. died at his home in Will county; Emma E. married a Mr.Caldwell, of Dutchess county, New York, and both are now deceased; Jacob R., of this sketch, is the next of the family; Elijah is engaged in the grain business in Russell county, Kansas; and William was killed by lightning at his home in Du Page county, Illinois.
Reared in Dutchess county, New York, Jacob R. Gorham obtained a good common-school education, and assisted his father in the work of the farm and tan yard until twenty-one years of age. Determined to try his fortune in the west, he came alone to Du Page county, Illinois, and at first worked on a farm in Wayne township. With a partner, he afterward engaged in farming, and in 1853 successfully operated a farm on the shares. Borrowing one hundred dollars, he began buying and selling cattle, and in this business cleared about eight hundred dollars. The following fall he returned to New York, but after visiting his parents and friends for three months, he again came to Wayne township, Du Page county, where he purchased a farm, though he went in debt for it. In connection with farming, he continued to engage in stock dealing, and after operating that place until 1860, he sold and bought a larger farm in the same neighborhood, residing there for five years.
In Du Page county, Mr. Gorham was married in 1855 to Miss Adelia Read, a native of that county, and the only daughter of Horace Read, one of the earliest settlers of that county, having located there in 1836. He was a native of Cambridge, Vermont, was a soldier of the war of 1812, and died in this state in 1867. After his death, Mr. Gorham sold his place in Wayne township and removed to the Read farm, which he operated for a number of years and still owns. He was one of the most successful stock dealers in this section of the state, and through his own unaided efforts and excellent management, he has acquired a handsome property, including a farm of three hundred and thirty-seven acres in Wayne township, Du Page county; another of one hundred and forty acres in Campton township, four miles west of St. Charles, and three hundred and twenty acres of land in Kansas, besides his pleasant home in St. Charles. He removed to that city in 1884, and has since lived retired, enjoying the fruits of his former toil. During his residence here, however, he has stimulated industries in Kane and Du Page counties, by loaning money.
Mr. and Mrs. Gorham have four daughters, namely: Mira, now the wife of F.W. Leake,a merchant of St. Charles; Augusta, wife of C. S. Green, of Kane county; Edith L., wife of Merritt Green, now of Dutchess county, New York; and Mamie, who is a graduate of the St. Charles high school, and resides with her parents. Since retiring from active business, Mr. and Mrs. Gorham have traveled quite extensively over the south and west, and also frequently visited his old home in Dutchess county, New York. Politically he has always been a stanch supporter of the Democratic party, but has never had any aspiration for office, preferring to give his undivided attention to his business interests. In the Methodist Episcopal church, of St. Charles, he and his family hold membership, and in the social circles of the community they occupy an enviable position. A man of strict integrity and sterling worth, Mr. Gorham commands the respect of all with whom he comes in contact, and the success that he has achieved in life is certainly well deserved. For forty-five years he has been identified with the interests of this section of the state and his circle of friends is extensive.
HARMAN Y. LONGACRE, M. D., is an enterprising and representative business man of St. Charles, where he has successfully conducted a drug-store since August, 1883, and has also engaged in the practice of his profession to a limited extent. He was born December 31, 1853, near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, a son of David and Hannah B. (Reinhart) Longacre, also natives of the Keystone state. The paternal grandfather was born in Saxony, Germany, and was an early settler of Pennsylvania. For many years the Doctor's father engaged in the drug business near Philadelphia, but is now spending his declining years upon a farm. The mother died in 1870. In the family were two sons and two daughters who reached years of maturity, the brother of our subject being Milton P., who married and engaged in the manufacture of lumber in Indiana, where his death occurred.
In Pennsylvania Dr. Longacre grew to manhood, completing his literary education in the State Normal School at Millersville, and subsequently he successfully engaged in teaching school for about two years. In his father's store he became thoroughly familiar with the drug business, which has principally claimed his attention throughout his business career. Entering the Michigan University at Ann Arbor, in 1874, he attended medical lectures there for two years, graduating with a class of sixty in the spring of 1876. He then located in Titusville, Pennsylvania, where he engaged in the practice of medicine for two years, and for the same length of time practiced in Olney, Illinois. At the end of that time he went to Chicago and took charge of a drug-store, which he conducted for two years. In August, 1883, we find him in St. Charles, where he has since made his home, while he has been actively and prominently identified with the business interests of the place. Purchasing a drug-store, he successfully carried on the same until April, 1885, when his stock of goods and building were destroyed by fire. With characteristic energy, however, he had opened another store in the Hunt block at the end of three months, and is now doing an excellent business. He also gives some attention to the practice of medicine, though principally confined to an office practice.
In St. Charles, Dr. Longacre was married in 1884, to Miss Nettie B. Norton, who was born, reared and educated in Kane county, and they now have one son, Frank H. Since attaining his majority the Doctor has been a stanch supporter of the Republican party, but has never cared for official honors, preferring to give his undivided attention to his business interests. Fraternally he is a Royal Arch Mason, having joined the blue lodge in Pennsylvania, and also united with the Odd Fellows Society in that state in 1876. He has filled all the chairs in the former order, and is past grand of the latter. He is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. A very agreeable and affable gentleman, he has made many friends during his residence in St. Charles, and receives and merits the high regard of the entire comunity. His estimable wife is a member of the Congregational church.
REV. W. D. ATCHISON, chaplain of the insane hospital at Elgin, has devoted his life to the ministry and in that noble calling his influence has been widespread, bringing comfort and happiness to many saddened hearts, while into many darkened lives he has brought the light of Christianity. He was born in Mercer county, Pennsylvania, February 19, 1833, a son of Matthew and Mary (Dowling) Atchison, who were also natives of the Keystone state. On the paternal side he is of Scotch descent, his grandfather, John Atchison, having been a native of that land of hills and heather. Coming to America, he located in Redstone, Washington county, Pennsylvania. He was accompanied by two brothers, one of whom. Matthew, took up his residence in Ohio, while the third settled in Kentucky. The grandfather spent the remainder of his life in Pennsylvania, where he died at an advanced age. The maternal grandfather of Rev. Atchison was James Dowling, who was born in the north of Ireland, of Scotch lineage. He came to the United States about the time of the Revolutionary war, and followed farming as a life occupation. His death occurred at the age of sixty years. The history of the Dowling family can be traced back prior to the advent of Christianity in Ireland. The wife of James Dowling was a relative of Lord Nelson, the great Irish admiral.
Matthew Atchison, father of our subject, was a millwright and carpenter, following those pursuits in order to provide for his large family. He died in his native state when about forty-four years of age. By his marriage he had thirteen children, nine of whom are now living, while four have reached the age of three score and ten. Those who still survive are: James, who is living near Kirwin, Kansas; Sarah, wife of Donald McKenzie, of Elizabeth, Illinois; John, of Lena, Illinois; Nelson, of Elizabeth, Illinois; Mary, wife of Solomon Snodgrass, of Jo Daviess county, Illinois; William Dowling; Jane, widow of Samuel Mc-Grath, of Freeport, Illinois; Samuel, of Lanark, Illinois; and Matthew, of Elizabeth, Illinois, are half brothers, the mother having married for her second husband Thomas Gault.
Rev. William D. Atchison resided in Mercer county, Pennsylvania, until fourteen years of age, and then came to Illinois with his mother and stepfather, locating in Jo Daviess county, about fifteen miles from Galena, where he resided until eighteen years of age. In the meantime he had in contemplation the work of the ministry. When only thirteen years of age he was converted and felt the call to preach and all his aims and hopes were directed toward that end. Prayer was always to him a means of strength and help and the study of the Bible his delight from boyhood. His early literary education was acquired in the schools of Jo Daviess county, and later he entered Mt. Carroll Collegiate Institute, and subsequently was a student of languages in Beloit College, under the tutorage of Professor Emerson, and a Greek professor, a native of Smyrna. When eighteen years of age he began teaching in Jo Daviess county, using the money thus earned to prepare for the ministry. While in Beloit College he received a call to teach in Elizabeth, and there remained for one year. At the age of nineteen he entered upon the work of the ministry to which he has since devoted his life. Joining the Rock River conference in 1854, he was first assigned to the church at Twelve Mile Grove, Stephenson county, Illinois, .where he remained one year, then spent two years in Pleasant Valley. He had charge of a mission in Savannah, Illinois, for two years, after which he was pastor of the churches in Elizabeth, Cedarville and Belvidere in turn.
On leaving the latter place Rev. Atchison became chaplain of the Forty-fifth Illinois Infantry and went with Sherman on the celebrated march to the sea and through the Carolinas. After the war, in the fall of 1865, he came to Elgin as pastor of the First Methodist church, continuing in that place for three years, during which time the house of worship was erected. For three years he filled the pulpit of his church in Kankakee and for a similar period was pastor of the church in Aurora, and spent one year in Oak Park, Illinois. After three years passed in Waukegan, he was called to Sterling, and afterward filled the pulpits of the churches in Princeton, Sycamore and Galena. For four years he continued to minister to the spiritual needs of the people of Galena, and then assumed a superanuated relation with the church, since which time he has acted as supply at different points. On the 4th of April, 1897, he was appointed chaplain of the Illinois Northern Hospital for the Insane at Elgin, and preaches there each Sunday.
On the 3d of January, 1855, Mr. Atchison married Miss Hannah Jennie Cook, daughter of John and Martha(Bennett)Cook, natives of England, who came to the United States in 1834, locating near Galena, Jo Daviess county, where they remained some years, when they moved to Iowa where their death occurred. Six sons and two daughters have been born of this union: John E., of Atchison, Kansas, married Emma Pearl Solomon and had three children, Frederick, William and George; Wilbur F., now pas-tor of the Methodist church of Woodlawn, married Rena Michaels, dean of the Woman's College, at Evanston; Florence Josephine resides at home; Hugh D. is a minister of the Methodist church at Wilmette, Illinois; Howard H. died at the age of three years; George B. is a dentist of Elgin; Nellie C. died at the age of three months; and Robert Hall Bruce completes the family.
Rev. Atchison is a member of the Ancient Order United Workmen and of Veteran post, No. 49, G. A. R. In politics he has been a stanch Republican since casting his first presidential vote for Fremont. He has always been a strong and popular pulpit orator, standing high in the councils of his church, and his life has been permeated with the noblest principles and purposes known to humanity.
WILLIAM C. KIMBALL, deceased, was for many years one of the best known and most highly respected citizens of Elgin. He was a native of Groton, New Hampshire, born February 17, 1806, and was the son of Joseph and Nancy (Currier) Kimball, also natives of the Granite state. They were the parents of six children, two sons and four daughters. With a view of bettering his condition in life and giving his children better opportunities for advancement, Joseph Kimball made a trip west, and, after looking around, decided to make Kane county his future home. In 1835 he started back east for his family, but died while passing through Ohio. His son, Samuel, who came with him to Kane county, remained here while his father went back, and shortly after the death of the latter, the remainder of the family, save our subject, joined him, making Elgin their home. The daughters were Nancy Currier, who married Alden V. Hills; Laura, widow of Asa Smith, and a resident of St. Louis; May Carter, now Mrs. Bartlett Adams, of St. Louis; Mrs. Ruth Ann Thiers, of Elgin; and Susanna Clement, who married Hiram George.
William C. Kimball grew to manhood in his native state, and was educated in the public schools of Groton. In 1835 he married Caroline Willard, daughter of William R. and Eleanor (Mann) Willard. From Groton, New Hampshire, he removed to Sherbrooke, Canada, where he engaged in mercantile business for a time, but in 1837 sold out and came to Elgin, Illinois, and purchased a large tract of land, but turned his attention principally to the mercantile business, opening a store and for years being successfully engaged in trade. The country was then new and' his trade extended for many miles in each direction. He later erected a flouring mill, which was called the Waverly Mill, and which is now owned and operated by the Stewart Brothers. This was the first mill erected in this part of the country and its patrons came from far and near.
The next venture of Mr. Kimball was the erection of a hotel which was given the name of Waverly house. Previous to its erection he lived over his store, but on the completion of the hotel he moved into it, and for some years served as landlord in addition to his other business. With his brother Samuel, he purchased large tracts of land on the west side of the river, which he sold off in parcels from time to time.
In 1856 Mr. Kimball met with some reverses in his business interests in Elgin, and later lost quite heavily in operating some of the lead mines of Missouri, the ore not being as extensive as anticipated. His re-verses, however, did not cripple to any extent his milling business, which he continued until his death. His business interests were of such a nature as to require a large number of employees, and his trade was for many years very large. His name was a household word, and he was known far and near for his good deeds and his charity. He had a soul that sympathized with those in distress and would do all in his power for their relief.
In his political belief, Mr. Kimball was a stanch Democrat, and was ever ready with time and money to advance the interests of his party, though he never cared for official position. On the urgent solicitation of friends he ran for mayor of Elgin and was duly elected, serving one term in a satisfactory manner. He was a great admirer of Stephen A. Douglas, the "Little Giant," and followed his lead through the stormy political career of that statesman. Like his great leader, when the question came up for final settlement as to whether the union of states should be maintained, he sunk the partisan in the patriot and unhesitatingly declared for the union. While not in the service, his sympathies were with those engaged in putting down the rebellion.
In his religious views Mr. Kimball was a Universalist, believing in the fatherhood of God, and brotherhood of man, and that while man might stray from the paths of virtue and right, a just God was always ready to welcome the return of the prodigal and receive him again in favor. His wife believed with him in these great views and was likewise a member of the Universalist church.
After a long and useful life, Mr. Kimball was called to his reward May 5, 1875, and his body was laid to rest in the beautiful cemetery at Elgin. The city council of Elgin, on the announcement of his death, passed the following complimentary preamble and resolutions:
WHEREAS, this council has learned of the death of one of the oldest and most highly esteemed citizens, an honored ex-mayor of the city, and wishing to express our feelings and the sense of the people upon the sad event; therefore
Resolved, That in the death of William C. Kimball, the city has lost an honored and highly respected citizen, whose private and public record was characterized by industry, purity and generosity.
Resolved, That, as a fit expression of our feelings and a slight honor to his memory, this council attend the funeral in a body.
Resolved, That the business men of the city be requested, as a further mark of respect, to close their places of business at the hour appointed for the funeral, to remain closed for the space of one hour.
Resolved, That we tender to the family of the deceased, our heartfelt sympathy at the great loss which has overtaken them.
The resolutions were ordered spread upon the records of the council and an engrossed copy furnished the widow and published in the city papers. Mrs. Kimball survived her husband some years, dying January 3, 1883. They were the parents of seven children: William, who died young; Leonidas, who also died young; Eugene, who died at the age of seventeen years; Ernma and Ella, twins, the latter being the wife of John J. Williford, and residing in Anna, Illinois; Anna, who died in childhood; and Charles W., who lives in Elgin.
Emma Kimball grew to womanhood in Elgin and was educated in its public schools. On the 25th of June 1863, she married Charles J. Hawkins, a native of Cayuga county, New York, and a son of Joseph and Lucy (Adams) Hawkins. To them have been born five children: Frank J., who is now operating the home farm, married Rose Grove, and has two children - Morris and Mabel; William J. and Morris B. are at home; Lucy died at the age of one year; and Ella W. is at home.
On the discovery of gold in California, Mr. Hawkins, though quite young, started to the new Eldorado, and is numbered among the '49ers. His experience going and coming and his life in that rich field can never be forgotten. On his return, about four years later, he went to his home in Genoa, New York, where he engaged in farming until he came west in 1857, settled in Elgin, and engaged in the business of loaning money for several years. In 1869 he purchased the farm in Cook county, near Elgin, consisting of about three hundred and twelve acres, where he has since resided, and for a number of years gave a part of his time to its cultivation. He is now living retired. Politically he is a stanch Democrat. Religiously Mrs. Hawkins is a Universalist. Like her father she is honored and respected by a large circle of friends and acquaintances, who appreciate her loving kindness and many acts of true Christian charity. A life-long resident of Elgin and vicinity, she has witnessed with pride its growth and prosperity. The poor have always had in her a true friend, and many sacrifices has she made to alleviate the sufferings of others.
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