Knox County Illinois
Galesburg Township History
Joseph Rowe, the first settler, took up his home in the southeastern corner of the township in 1832 or 1833. Soon after came Isaiah Morse located on Sections 19 and 3, respectively. Edward Morse, was one of the Henderson colony, but settled so far from his neighbors as to be over the Galesburg Line. away from the timber. He built a tall log cabin which could be seen for miles over the level country, and hence was called the "Lighthouse of the Prairie."
All the land in the township is very fertile. There are six ungraded schools, with one hundred and thirty-six pupils.. The six school houses are all frame structures worth about five thousand seven hundred dollars.
This township comprises now the twenty-seven sections of township 11 North, Range 1 East, not included in the limits of the City of Galesburg.
The city was made a separate town by legislative enactment in 1867.
The township's population (the city, of course being excluded), as shown by the United States Census reports, has varied as follows: in 1860, eight hundred and seventy-eight; in 1880, eight hundred and forty-eight. In 1890, seven hundred and eight.
[For additional facts relative to the history of this township, the reader is referred to the article entitled "City of Galesburg".]
Biographies of Galesburg Township
Hiland Henry Clay -- James H. Coolidge -- Francis Thomas Derby -- Edward A. Felt -- Jonathan C. Garwood -- John W. George -- Morris Griffith -- Charles D. Gum -- Daniel Johnson -- C.A. Main -- Nels X. Nelson -- James Paden
Hiland Henry Clay
son of John L. and Louisa M. (Balch) Clay, was born in Chester, Vermont, Jan. 3, 1838.
His paternal grandfather was Timothy Clay, who was born in MA. His paternal grandmother was Rhoda Lawson, also a native of MA. His maternal great-grandfather was Hart Balch, who was born in Boston. His maternal great grandmother’s maiden name was Betsey Green. His maternal grandfather was Joel Balch, a native of N. H., and his maternal grandmother was Betsey Stevens.
John L. Clay, the father, came to Knox County in 1837. He bought four hundred and eighty acres of land in Galesburg Township, a part of which has always been known as the “Clay” homestead. His traveling companions were Adnah Williams, who founded the “Williams Nursery” on West Main Street, and Stephen Fields. Both Williams and Fields bought a tract of land. After making their investments and examining this section of country thoroughly with a view to future settlement, they all returned to Vermont.
In 1840, Mr. Clay moved to Illinois with his family, which consisted of his wife and four children: Alonzo C., William L., Warren W., and Hiland H. They lived in Galesburg, then a small village, nearly one year, until a house was built on the land which he had already purchased. This land was all prairie, very fertile, and became one of the best farms in Knox County. Here Mr. Clay lived until he died, reared his family, and by his industry became a man of wealth and standing. He was charitable and kind, a good neighbor and a fond father. He was liberal minded, a thorough-going democrat, and was called to fill several local offices, such as Assessor and Supervisor.
Mr. Clay married into a very superior family intellectually. His wife’s maiden name was Louisa M. Balch, who was born in Andover, Vermont. Her brother, Dr. William S. Blach, was a Universalist clergyman, and one of the greatest orators and debaters in the denomination to which he belonged. Mrs. Clay was a strong, intellectual woman. She had a versatile mind, was well informed, and always manifested true, motherly instincts in her family. Her neighbors gave her the name of being a kind hearted woman, ministering to the sick and needy as circumstances seemed to require.
Major H. H. Clay inherited some of the characteristics and mental qualities of his mother. He was educated in the common schools, finishing with a short course in Lombard University. He is thoroughly posted in the events of the day, and has been a prominent citizen in the community in which he has lived ever since he has arrived at manhood. He was raised on the farm and farming has been his occupation through life. His homestead embraces four hundred and twenty acres of most excellent land, and he is regarded as one of the best practical farmers of Knox County. During the Civil War, he enlisted in the One Hundred and Second Regiment Illinois Volunteers, and remained in service until its close. He participated in many hard fought battles, such as Reseca, New Hope Church, Peachtree Creek, and siege of Atlanta. On entering the army he was chosen First Lieutenant of his company, and within four months thereafter, was commissioned as Captain. In Dec. 1864, he rose to the rank of Major, and commanded his Regiment until the close of the war.
As a soldier, Major Clay was a good disciplinarian, prompt and intelligent, and always won the respect and confidence of his command. His regiment saw the most active service after May 1, 1864. They were engaged in battle in the siege of Chattanooga and Atlanta nearly one hundred days. They remained in this vicinity until Nov. 15 when they entered the great army under General Sherman in that ever memorable “march to the Sea”. Major Clay’s regiment participated in the Grand March in Washington and was mustered out June 6, 1865, disbanding in Chicago.
As a man and citizen, Major Clay has had an honorable career. He is a man of strict integrity, sound judgment, and has a well stored mind. He is not fastidious or squeamish, or burdened with the conventionalities of life. He goes straight forward to his labors and duty and leaves to others the freedom he himself enjoys. He is broad in his views, liberal in his dealings, and charitable toward all. In politics Mr. Clay is a consistent and unswerving democrat. All his life he has been identified with that party. He has held several township offices. In 1877 he was elected Supervisor, which office he filled most acceptably.
Major Clay was married Oct. 14, 1878 to Jennie E. Clay, daughter of James and Charlotte T. (Orcutt) Clay, residents of Gaysville, Vermont.
To them were born six children: Fred C., John L., Walter T., Irving H., Marion and Roberts M.
James H. Coolidge
Farmer; Galesburg Township; born August 25, 1838, in Watertown, Massachusetts; educated in the common schools. His parents were John and Mary (Bond) Coolidge of Watertown, Massachusetts. He was married to Ellen F. Brown in New Hampshire, January 1, 1862. They have nine children: Lottie E., who married David Williams, and died in 1895; John, James H., Jr., Arthur E., Nellie, Walter, Josephine, Edgar D. and Edna L. Mr. Coolidge came to Knox County in 1874 and settled on Main street, west of Galesburg. He is engaged in general farming, dairying and the breeding of thoroughbred Holstein cattle. His ancestors came from England to Watertown about the year 1700. Mr. Coolidge is a member of the Baptist Church. In politics, he is a republican. [tr. by K.T.]
Francis Thomas Derby
Farmer; Galesburg Township; born, July 10, 1822, at Andover, Vermont; educated int he common schools of Vermont. His parents, Nathan B. and Betsey Thomas Derby, and his paternal grandparents, Nathan and Nancy Thompson Derby, came from Massachusetts; his great-grandfather, Nathan Derby, was born in England. Nathan B. Derby moved from Massachusetts to Andover, Windsor County, Vermont, in 1821, and died in 1880. Mr. F. t. Derby was married in New York City, October 07, 1852, to Anna Thompson. Their children are: Frank W., William N., Eddie T., Ella, and Mary. Mr. Derby is a republican.
Edward A. Felt
Drover and Farmer; Galesburg Township, where he was born February 20, 1860. His father, Charles M. Felt and his grandfather, Peter Felt, came from Massachusetts; his great-grandfather was George A. Felt. Mr. C. M. Felt came to Knox county in 1842, and located first near Cherry Grove. He had twelve children: Charles M. Seth H., Austin V., Albert, Edward A., Harry, deceased; Mary, Adaline, Clarissa, Elsie, Helen and Kate. The father died February 21, 1897. He had been Supervisor of the township for fourteen years. Mr. E. A. Felt was married to Emma G. Stringham, in Galesburg, February 24, 1881. He now lives in the homestead where his father settled in 1858. He is a republican, and was elected Town Supervisor in 1892. which office he has held to the present time. He has also been Road Commissioner, Assessor and School Director.
Jonathan C. Garwood
Farmer and Stock-raiser; Galesburg Township; born in 1826 in Ohio, educated in the common schools of Michigan. His parents were William Garwood of Ohio and Mary Thatcher Garwood of Kentucky. He was married in Knoxville, Illinois, October, 1852, to Mary Churchill, duaghter of Lewis and Mary Churchill Weeks, who came to Galesburg in 1841. She was born May 13, 1832, Sheldon, New York. Two children were born these parents, Mamie E., and Martha who died at the age of six years. In politics Mr. Garwood is a republican.
John W. George
Farmer; Galesburg Township; born August 19, 1836, in Ohio, where he was educated in the common schools. His parents were Thomas George of Ohio, and Mary Gorsuch of Maryland; his paternal grandparents were Presbyterians from Ireland; his maternal grandparents were Norman and Kiturah Gorsuch of Maryland. Mr. George was married March 09, 1862, in Hancock County, Illinois, to Mary E. Younger, who was a native of Ohio. Their children are; Charles C., John E., Minnie D., Lulu B., Mary Blanche, and Florence. In politics, he is a republican and has held various township offices.
Farmer; Galesburg Township; born February 17, 1836, in Fayette County, Pennsylvania; educated in the common schools. He was married to Elizabeth Harmony, at Knoxville, Illinois, December 27, 1859, They have six children: Herbert R., William E., Arthur A., F4rankM., Etta O., Mrs. George C. Hutson, Jr., and Jessie A. Mr. Griffith was the son of Able Griffith, who came from Ohio to Knox County in 1852. He settled in Cedar Township and followed for many years the occupation of farming; he died in 1875, leaving five sons and three daughters: John, William, George, Howard M., Morris, Anna E., Mary E., and Frances Belle. In 1859, Mr. Griffith built a house on a part of a tract of land purchased by his father in Galesburg Township where he still follows his chosen occupation of farming. In religion, Mr. Griffith is a Presbyterian. In politics. he is a republican, and was Highway Commissioner for seven years, and has held the office of School Director.
Charles D. Gum
Farmer; Galesburg Township, where he was born September 12, 1866, and where he received his education in the common schools. His father, Jacob D. Gum was born in Sangamon County, Illinois; his mother, Minerva Montgomery Gum, was born in Spencer County, Indiana. His paternal grandparents, John B. and Cassander Dills Gum were natives of Kentucky. Mr. Gum was married March 18, 1891, to Ellen Eckland, in Knoxville, Illinois. They have three children; Edwin, Bessie, and Grace. Mr. Gum is a republican.
Galesburg Township; born in Sweden Mar 23, 1838, where he was educated in the common schools. He has been three times married; first to Charlotte Wahlstrom, who died and left three children: Peter, Mary and Victor. His second wife was Emma Johnson, who died and left two children: Jennie and August. His present wife was Clara B. Larson. They have one child, Arthur.
Mr. Johnson is a member of the Lutheran Church. He came from Sweden in 1869 and for some time worked for the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad; he afterwards followed coal mining for fifteen years. In 1886 he began farming on Section 35, Galesburg Township, where he still resides. He is regarded as one of the substantial farmers of the southeastern part of the township. In politics, Mr. Johnson is a republican.
Farmer; Galesburg Township; born Nov. 19, 1833, in Otsego Co, NY. He was married to Harriet Mosher in New York, March 16, 1880. They have three children: Earl T., Harry E., and Frances M.
Mr. Main came with his father to Knox County in 1854 and lived in Oneida three years before coming to Galesburg where he worked as brakeman for eighteen months. He was freight conductor for the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy Railroad Company for ten years and passenger conductor twelve years. In 1869 he bought the farm on which he now lives and for a time combined farming with road work.
Mr. Main is a republican and has held several township offices. He was Highway Commissioner for seventeen years, School Director for twenty years, and is a member of the Board of Directors of Knox County Agricultural Society. He is an Odd Fellow and a Charter Member of the Lodge. In religion he is a Methodist.
Nels X. Nelson
Farmer; Galesburg Township; born in Sweden in 1840, where he was educated. He was married to Benta Palm in 1863, in Sweden. Their children are: John X., David E., Frans Joseph and Nels W.
Mr. Nelson came from Sweden to Galesburg in 1872, and for some time worked by the month. In 1880 he began farming for himself, and is now a thrifty farmer on Section 33, Galesburg Township.
In religion Mr. Nelson is a Lutheran. He is a republican.
Farmer and Stockman; Galesburg Township; born June 17, 1827, in Crawford County, PA; educated in the common schools. His parents were Isaac Paden of Pennsylvania and Celia (Fish) Paden of New York.
Mr. Paden was married to Martha Edgar in Galesburg in 1851. They have one child, Alonzo F., living in Galesburg Township.
Mr. Paden is a republican and was Supervisor for several years.
Son of Josiah and Sarah (Pettingill) Babcock, was born in Andover NH, August 22, 1823. His paternal grandfather, who had the same name, was born in Milton MA, July 6, 1752. His maternal grandfather was Amos Pettingill; the time and place of his birth are unknown. His father, who was also named Josiah, was born in Andover NH, September 21, 1791, and his mother, Sarah Pettingill, was born in Salisbury NH, September 21, 1797.
Josiah Babcock, the third of the same name in the line, was not reared in affluence. His early years were spent among the stern and rugged hills of his native state. His education was obtained in the common schools and in Hampden Academy, Maine. He was not broadly educated, but was thoroughly trained in those branches necessary to a practical business life. In his boyhood days he worked in the lumber camps on the Penobscot river in Maine. When only eighteen years of age, he ran a saw mill for his father. He continued in this work for five years, when he came West, reaching Peoria IL, in 1846. Here he was engaged in a wholesale house of general merchandise for Moses Pettingill. After two years of service, he bought an interest in the firm and became a junior partner. He conducted this business successfully for several years , when he sold out and came to Galesburg in 1852. His first partnership here was with Warren Willard in a store of general merchandise. He soon sold out and engaged in the hardware business with Reed and Stilson under the firm name of Reed, Babcock, and Stilson.
Mr. Babcock continued in this business, almost uninterruptedly, until the day of his death, which occurred September 1, 1897, at the age of seventy-three. He first bought Reed's and Stilson's interest and then ran the business in his own name. He then sold out to Calkins and Wilcox, which firm existed but a short time. He next took Mr. Reed as a partner under the firm name of Reed and Babcock. This co-partnership lasted until Mr. Reed's death, and then it was changed to Babcock and Pierpont. This last co-partnership continued until the retirement of Mr. Pierpont in 1893. Then Mr. Babcock continued in the business in his own name.
Mr. Babcock was prosperous in every relation of life. He started almost alone in the world and became a man of wealth. He possessed ability and was always noted for his honesty of purpose. He had no high aspiration for the honors of office, but was contented with the simplicity of home life and with the duties devolving upon him as a citizen. He took the position in the ranks of toilers working in the interest of the city, and earned the reputation of a man whose word is law and whose acts are just and right. His views were broad, charitable, and intelligent; and his life was a blessing to the community in which he lived.
Mr. Babcock always took an active interest in the prosperity and welfare of the city of his adoption. Every line of business and every project which his judgment approved received his cordial support. He encouraged the establishment of the Electric Power and Motor Company, and was a part owner and director. For thirty years, he was a director in the Second National Bank of Galesburg, and for many years its Vice President. He was always regarded as one of its most trustworthy guardians and managers.
He was a friend of education. He believed not only in the common school system but in higher institutions of learning. He was a staunch supporter of Knox College, and for many years was one of its trustees. His discretion and judgment, as a member of its Executive Committee, were appreciated and acknowledged.
Politically, Mr. Babcock was a republican, but in no sense a partisan. No man ever exercised the right of suffrage in a freer spirit than he. He voted for measures, not men. In religious faith, he was a Congregationalist and a deacon in the church for many years.
He was wedded in Hampton, Maine, November 7, 1853, to Catherine Wheeler, daughter of Willard Wheeler, who was once a sea captain. To them were born three children, Alice, wife of W. J. Pierpont, living in Crescent City, Florida; William W., and Josiah, who is engaged in the hardware business in the store building formerly occupied by his father.
Newton Bateman, A.M., LL.D.,
Educator and Editor-in-Chief of the "Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois," was born at Fairfield, N.J. July 27, 1822, of mixed English and Scotch ancestry; was brought by his parents to Illinois in 1833; in his youth enjoyed only limited educational advantages, but graduated from Illinois College at Jacksonville in 1843, supporting himself during his college course wholly by his own labor. Having contemplated entering the Christian ministry, he spent the following year at Lane Theological Seminary, but was compelled to withdraw on account of failing health, when he gave a year to travel. He then entered upon his life-work as a teacher by engaging as Principal of an English and Classical School in St. Louis, remaining there two years, when he accepted the Professorship of Mathematics in St. Charles College, at St. Charles, Mo., continuing in that position four years (1847-51). Returning to Jacksonville, Ill., in the latter year, he assumed the principalship of the main public school of that city. Here he remained seven years, during four of them discharging the duties of County Superintendent of Schools for Morgan County. In the fall of 1857 he became Principal of Jacksonville Female Academy, but the following year was elected State Superintendent of Public Instruction, having been nominated for the office by the Republican State Convention of 1858, which put Abraham Lincoln in nomination for the United States Senate. By successive re-elections he continued in this office fourteen years, serving continuously from 1859 to 1875, except two years (1863-65), as the result of his defeat for re-election in 1862. He was also endorsed for the same office by the State Teachers' Association in 1856, but was not formally nominated by a State Convention. During his incumbency the Illinois common school system was developed and brought to the state of efficiency which it has so well maintained. He also prepared some seven volumes of biennial reports, portions of which have been republished in five different languages of Europe, besides a volume of "Common School Decisions," originally published by authority of the General Assembly, and of which several editions have since been issued. This volume has been recog-nized by the courts, and is still regarded as authoritative on the subjects to which it relates. In addition to his official duties during a part of this period, for three years he served as editor of "The Illinois Teacher," and was one of a committee of three which prepared the bill adopted by Congress creating the National Bureau of Education. Occupying a room in the old State Capitol at Springfield adjoining that used as an office by Abraliam Lincoln during the first candidacy of the latter for the Presidency, in 1860, a close intimacy sprang up between the two men, which enabled the "School-master," as Mr. Lincoln playfully called the Doctor, to acquire an insight into the character of the future emancipator of a race, enjoyed by few men of that time, and of which he gave evidence by his lectures full of interesting reminiscence and eloquent appreciation of the high character of the "Martyr President." A few months after his retirement from the State Superintendency (1875), Dr. Bateman was offered and accepted the Presidency of Knox College at Galesburg, remaining until 1898, when he voluntarily tendered his resignation. This, after having been repeatedly urged upon the Board, was finally accepted; but that body immediately, and by unanimous vote, appointed him President Emeritus and Professor of Mental and Moral Science, under which he continued to discharge his duties as a special lecturer as his health enabled him to do so. During his incumbency as President of Knox College, he twice received a tender of the Presidency of Iowa State University and the Chancellorship of two other important State institutions. He also served, by appointment of successive Governors between 1877 and 1891, as a member of the State Board of Health, for four years of this period being President of the Board. In February, 1878, Dr. Bateman, unexpectedly and without solicitation on his part, received from President Hayes an appointment as "Assay Commissioner" to examine and test the fineness and weight of United States coins, in accordance with the provisions of the act of Congress of June 22, 1874, and discharged the duties assigned at the mint in Pliiladelphia. Never of a very strong physique, which was rather weakened by his privations while a student and his many years of close confinement to mental labor, towards the close of his life Dr. Bateman suffered much from a chest trouble which finally developed into "angina pectoris," or heart disease, from which, as the result of a most painful attack, he died at his home in Galesburg, Oct. 21, 1897. The event produced the most profound sorrow, not only among his associates in the Faculty and among the students of Knox College, but a large number of friends throughout the State, who had known him officially or personally, and had learned to admire his many noble and beautiful traits of character. His funeral, which occurred at Galesburg on Oct. 25, called out an immense concourse of sorrowing friends. Almost the last labors performed by Dr. Bateman were in the revision of matter for this volume, in which he manifested the deepest interest from the time of his assumption of the duties of its Editor-in-Chief. At the time of his death he had the satisfaction of knowing that his work in this field was practically complete. Dr. Bateman had been twice married, first in 1850 to Miss Sarah Dayton of Jacksonville, who died in 1857, and a second time in October, 1859, to Miss Annie N. Tyler, of Massachusetts (but for some time a teacher in Jacksonville Female Academy), who died, May 28, 1878.
Clifford Rush (Bateman), a son of Dr. Bateman by his first marriage, was born at Jacksonville, March 7, 1854, graduated at Amherst College and later from the law department of Columbia College, New York, afterwards prosecuting his studies at Berlin, Heidelberg and Paris, finally becoming Professor of Administrative Law and Government in Columbia College—a position especially created for him. He had filled this position a little over one year when his career — which was one of great promise — was cut short by death, Feb. 6, 1883. Three daughters of Dr. Bateman survive —all the wives of clergymen. — P. S. [tr. by K.T.]
August Werner Berggren is emphatically a self-made man. He has risen from the service of an apprenticeship to exalted stations of honor and trust. He was born in Amots Bruk, Ockelbo Socken, Sweden, August 17, 1840, and is the son of Johan and Karin (Hanson) Berggren. His father was a self-educated man, winning his way to success by his shrewdness and native ability. He was a great reader, but he learned his most valuable lessons in the school of experience. He held several minor offices and looked after cases in courts, administering estates and the like. For thirteen years he ran a flouring mill. Afterwards he purchased a farm on which he lived until he emigrated to this country in 1856.
Mr. Berggren is an example of the accomplishment of much in spite of limited educational advantages. He attended the village schools in Sweden, until he was 14 years of age, living at the same time on a farm.
Then he was apprenticed to learn the tailor’s trade. The contract drawn by his father provided that for the first three years he should work for his master without remuneration; for the fourth year he was to receive thirty-five riksdaler; and for the fifth, forty (a riksdaler being about equal to 27 cents in American money). The father was to furnish the cloth for the tailor to make the apprentice’s clothing. In case of the death of the apprentice during the first year of his apprenticeship the father should pay the tailor fifteen riksdaler. When the father decided to emigrate to this country he was obliged to pay the master tailor fifty riksdaler for the release of his son.
Mr. Berggren first came to Oneida, and then went to Victoria, where he found employment in the tailoring establishment of Jonas Hallstrom, at eight dollars a month and board and washing for one year.
He then came to Galesburg and worked at his trade, where opportunities were presented. In 1860, he moved to Monmouth, Warren County, and worked for Captain Denman, a merchant tailor of that place. About the close of the war, he returned to Galesburg and became a solicitor of life insurance.
During this time he devoted considerable attention, with fair success, to music. He played the violin, became a leader of string bands in Galesburg and Monmouth, and arranged music for the same
Mr. Berggren has no military record. At the first call for volunteers to put down the Rebellion he went to Knoxville and joined the Swedish company, commanded by Captain Holmberg. Two companies were there: one composed of Americans; the other, of Swedes. The former was mustered into service; the latter, disbanded. He then went to Monmouth, where he remained until his return to Galesburg in 1864.
Mr. Berggren has held many important offices. In 1869, he was elected Justice of the Peace in the City of Galesburg. While holding that office he was nominated by the republican convention for the office of Sheriff, and elected in the Fall of 1872. With great credit, he held the office for four terms, and his books and reports are spoken of to this day as models worthy of imitation. In 1880, while yet Sheriff, he was nominated and elected Senator from the Twenty-second District, composed of Knox and Mercer counties. Four years afterwards, he was re-elected from the new district, composed of Knox and Fulton counties. When the Senate was organized in 1887, he was chosen President pro tempore of that body. On May 1, 1889, the Governor appointed him Warden of the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet, which position he resigned to take active supervision of the Covenant Mutual Life Association of Illinois, with principal offices in this city.
His public spirit is fully shown by his connection with various public enterprises, such as the Galesburg Stoneware Company; The National Perefoyd Company; The Galesburg Paving Brick Company; the Galesburg National Bank, having been a Director of the same since its organization. He was a member of the Berggren and Lundeen firm, later the J.A. Lundeen Company, and still later the Berggren Clothing Company. From its organization, for twenty years, he was President of The Covenant Mutual Life Association, and for the last two years has been its Treasurer, still holding that position.
Mr. Berggren is both an Odd Fellow and a Mason, joining the former order in 1868; the latter, in 1869. He is a member of the several Masonic bodies in this city, and in the Order of Odd Fellows has taken a very active interest, filling every office of the subordinate bodies and the principal offices of the Grand Lodge. He was Grand Master and presided over the deliberations of the Grand Lodge at Danville, Illinois in 1880, and represented the Grand Lodge in the Sovereign Grand Lodge, at Baltimore, Maryland.
Mr. Berggren has broadened his life and added greatly to the storehouse of information by quite extensive travel. He has visited almost every State in the Union, and in 1882, took an extensive trip through England, France, Belgium, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Scotland, and Ireland. His charities have been of a practical kind. He has given to the Swedish M. E. Church and parsonage, to several other churches, Knox College, Lombard Gymnasium, and Cottage Hospital.
His religious affiliations are with the Swedish M. E. Church, although in 1856, he was confirmed in Sweden in the Lutheran Church. He served as lay delegate to the General Conference at Cincinnati in 1880.
In politics, he is a staunch republican. He is not only a worker, but has been one of the leaders in his party.
He was married March 8, 1866, to Christina Naslund, whose parents came to this country in 1854, joining the Bishop Hill Colony. Six children were born to them, Capitola Maud, Guy Werner, Ralph Augustus, Claus Eugene, Jay Valentine, and Earl Hugo, Ralph Augustus was run over by a train of cars and killed in 1887.
James B. Boggs
James Buchanan Boggs, Attorney at Law and Master in Chancery, was born in Greencastle, Franklin County, Pennsylvania, October 20, 1828. His parents were John and Isabella Craig (Allison) Boggs, and were natives of Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Both the father and the mother were intelligent and painstaking people and exhibited marked traits of character. They were of Scotch-Irish ancestry and seem to have inherited the stern morality of that race.
John Boggs was a physician, and at an early age, was left fatherless. He was adopted by his mother’s brother, Dr. Robert Johnson, a man of wealth and influence, and under his supervision, rose to prominence. He received his medical diploma from the University of Maryland, and for thirty years practiced medicine in his native country. In the War of 1812 he was appointed surgeon of Franklin County Volunteers, and in 1819 he married Isabella Craig, daughter of William Allison.
Dr. Robert Johnson, the adopted father of Dr. John Boggs, was a surgeon in the Revolutionary War from the beginning to the end. He was also one of the original members of the Society of Cincinnati, whose first president was George Washington.
J. B. Boggs availed himself of such opportunities for schooling in his youth as the district schools afforded. This preparation was supplemented by a thorough training at the academy. He studied law at Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, and in 1852, was admitted to the Bar. After leaving school, he was first engaged in teaching, and afterwards took charge of the Chestnut Grove Iron Furnace. His first law practice was at Loudon and McConnellsburg. In 1856, he came to Galesburg, where has been his home ever since.
Mr. Boggs is a man of ability and of fine presence. In forming opinions, he is cautious, and is not biased by prejudicial instincts. His nature is benevolent and open, to be read of all men. To him, right doing and right living are instinctive. The places of honor that he has been called to fill have been deservedly won. He filled the office of City Attorney in 1862-65-66-67-68-69, and was elected Alderman from 1879 to 1884. He was appointed Master in Chancery in 1871 and has held the office ever since.
According to his means, he has favored every public enterprise that has been for the interest of the city of his adoption. For several years, he has been the president of the Galesburg Printing Company, and a charter member of the Homestead and Loan Association and its attorney. He belongs to the Masonic Order, though not an active member at present. He has also been connected with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows since 1849.
Mr. Boggs is a firm believer in the tenets of the Presbyterian faith and his life has always been in harmony with that church. All its laws and ordinances are to him sacred and these he has kept blameless. His political affiliations are with the republicans. Although his time is employed principally in the Chancery Court, yet he has never failed to do his duty as a worker for the success of republican principles.
He was united in marriage at Galesburg, October 5, 1858, to Susan Cornelia Weeks, daughter of Benjamin Weeks. Eight children were born to them, three of whom are living, Isabel Allison, Elizabeth Wharton (Dunn), and Henry Hurd.
Aaron Boyer was born in York County, Pennsylvania, February 17, 1833. In 1839, he moved with his parents, Daniel and Rosana Boyer, to Indiana, where he attended the district school until twelve years of age, obtaining only a meager education. About this time, he met with an accident, which eventually caused his total blindness. However, as soon as he was able to labor, his parents being poor, he was obliged to assist his father in the distillery business, in which he soon became proficient. At the age of fifteen, his father sent him from home to superintend a distillery for an acquaintance. His labor here was too great for his strength and education. Besides, the making of whiskey was distasteful and repulsive. After remaining eight months, he returned home, asking God’s help to keep him from such an unworthy occupation. This resolution was the cause of his leaving home and starting out to make his own way in the world. After many unsuccessful efforts to obtain work, he was finally employed for the season by the Miama Canal Packet Company (J. A. Garfield being at the same time an employee of this company), in driving a team on a canal packet. In the Fall of 1849, he was so badly crippled with rheumatism that he had to seek other employment. It was while thus disabled that he learned to make brooms.
In 1850, he was engaged with a surveying party on the Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railroad, which was the second railroad running out of Cincinnati, Ohio. But the inclement weather so aggravated his rheumatism and affected his eyes, which had never recovered their strength, that he was forced to give up all kinds of labor. At the age of seventeen, he became totally blind. But this boy’s ambition could not be overcome, even by so great a calamity as this. He began making brooms at East Germantown, Indiana, where his parents then lived. In a short time, he had become so proficient in this work that he was appointed foreman of the broom shops at the School for the Blind at Indianapolis, where he remained for one year.
In 1853, he married Elizabeth Buck. To them was born one son, who died in infancy, the mother dying soon after. October 3, 1858, he married Sarah Harper in Wayne County, Indiana, where from 1855 to 1864, he was engaged in the manufacture of brooms, his first purchase of broom corn aggregating but five dollars, he obtaining credit for two dollars of this amount. He then moved to Crawford County, Illinois, where he carried on the same business, until he came to Elmwood, Illinois, in 1866. In 1868, he went to Galesburg, locating in a small frame dwelling house with a factory fifteen by thirty feet. From this small beginning, has grown up a large and successful business, which he carried on until 1897, when he leased his plant and is now retired. In 1893 he bought about twelve thousand dollars’ worth of broom corn within thirty-six hours time.
Mr. Boyer, by his indomitable perseverance, transformed his little broom shop into a large manufactory, making from 15,000 to 18,000 dozen brooms annually. He has also invented and patented some useful broom machinery. Twice his factory has been destroyed by fire—once with no insurance. The present factory was built in 1882, and is sixty by ninety feet, two stories high. It is filled with the latest and most improved machinery. He has also built a fine brick residence with all modern improvements.
Mr. Boyer’s second wife died in 1875, leaving three sons and one daughter, Charles H., Andrew J., William R., and Ola B.
July 10, 1877, he married Julia E., daughter of John and Bethan (Lee) Mitchell, who were among the early settlers of Galesburg, coming from New York, about 1840. By this marriage, Mr. Boyer has had four children—one son and one daughter dying in infancy. The two sons now living are Abel and Orrin E.
Mr. Boyer is an active member of the Methodist Church, and during his long business career, has earned for himself the friendship and respect of all with whom he has come in contact, either in business or in a social way.
Samuel Brown was born in Montgomery County, Indiana, April 23, 1826. He was the son of Samuel and Jane (Bell) Brown; the father was of Scotch-Irish descent, and was born in Kentucky; the mother, who was of Welsh-Irish ancestry, was a native of New Jersey; they were married in Butler County, Ohio, March 12, 1807; he was a soldier in the War of 1812 and drew a soldier’s warrant. This worthy couple moved from Butler County, Ohio, to Whitewater, Indiana, then to Montgomery County, Indiana, where they lived twelve years, and from there, in the Fall of 1834, to Rio Township, Knox County, Illinois. The next Spring they bought land in Henderson Township (Section 6) and although there were settlers all around them, neighbors were generally three miles apart. They were both members of the Baptist Church, and Mr. Brown held the office of deacon. In politics, he was a democrat. They died in Warren County, Mr. Brown, September 10, 1856, aged seventy-four, Mrs. Brown, May 12, 1869, nearly eighty-three years of age. They had nine children, Elizabeth, Esther, Mary, Benjamin, Allen S., Nancy, Jane, Samuel, and John. All lived to enter upon married life, except John, who died at the age of ten, but only Samuel and Benjamin are now living. The parental grandparents of Samuel Brown were John and Esther (Crossley) Brown.
Samuel Brown attended school only nine months, but nevertheless became a well-read, self-educated man, one of the best informed and most intelligent in his township. It was not until after he married, that he learned to read and write, acquiring this and much other knowledge from the teachers who boarded in his family.
November 6, 1845, in Mercer County, Illinois, Mr. Brown married Elizabeth Miller. Six children were born to them, Abraham Miller; Jacob Edward; William W., deceased; Jennie, deceased; Nannie and Ella. Abraham M. graduated from Lombard University in 1870; he is a lawyer, having been admitted to the Bar in 1872; in 1876, he was elected to the Legislature, serving one term. Jacob Edward is a farmer and stock-raiser in Rio Township. Jennie married Milton L. Overstreet; died, 1892. Nannie is the wife of J. L. Overstreet. Ella married Nathaniel G. Scott, who died in August, 1898; they had three children, Preston Brown, Notely Miller, and Mary deceased. Mrs Scott was educated in the Galesburg High School, graduating in the class of 1877.
Mr. Brown was only twenty years old when he married and settled on his farm of 80 acres on Section 30, Rio Township. This farm he improved, and was so successful that he added to the original until the home farm now consists of over 600 acres. To his wife is due equal credit for the accumulation of this fine property. Although she was a most delicate woman, she was an excellent housekeeper and manager. In the month of August, 1870, at great sacrifice to himself, he left his prosperous farm and moved to Galesburg for the purpose of educating his children. Mr. and Mrs. Brown celebrated their Golden Wedding in 1895, one of three golden weddings in the family; it was a notable occasion.
In religion, Mr. Brown is a Universalist. In politics, he is a democrat, and has held a number of local offices, such as Justice of the Peace, which office he held for about twelve years, School Director and Trustee, Road Commissioner and Supervisor.
Dwight W. Bunker
Dwight W. Bunker was born November 4, 1846 in Mentor, Ohio. He was the son of Samuel and Silvia (Walton) Bunker and received from them great care and instruction during this boyhood years. He was educated in the common schools, and from them acquired that mental discipline which fitted him for the business of life. When only two years of age, his parents came to Henderson, Illinois, where they spent the remainder of their days. Young Bunker had a strong desire to be a soldier, and when only fourteen years old he enlisted at Wataga in Company K, Forty-first Illinois Volunteers, known as the “Lead Mine Regiment”, October 20, 1861. He belonged to Captain B. F. Holcomb’s Company and was its youngest member. He was at the capture of Forts Henry and Donaldson, and saw the stars and stripes planted in triumph on their heights. He fought at the bloody battle of Shiloh, and was terribly wounded there while standing near the color-bearer. His left arm was shattered, his left side was lacerated, and a bullet struck his shoulder, which was never removed. He was left, as though dead, on the field of battle. But life was not wholly extinct, and he was removed to a tent where he remained several days without even the covering of a blanket. For six weeks he lay in the death-ward of the hospital, looking at the ghastly forms of the dead and dying around him, with scarcely a ray of hope of recovery. His father, learning of his condition, removed him to his home, and thereby, probably, saved his life. These frightful wounds were the cause of his early death, and it may be truly said that Dwight W. Bunker died for his country.
As soon as he had sufficiently recovered, he was anxious to engage in business. From 1864 to 1873, he was employed on the Union Pacific Railroad. At the close of his service with this company, he engaged in trade for himself, opening a shoe store on Main Street in Galesburg. This business he conducted with success until his death.
Dwight W. Bunker was an excellent citizen. He was patriotic, loving, and kind, and discharged every obligation not grudgingly, but cheerfully. He was benevolent and charitable according to his means, and was no laggard in the performance of good deeds. In every organization to which he belonged, he was regarded by his associates as an efficient working member. He belonged to the Grand Army of the Republic, and in May, 1897, was elected Junior Vice Commander of Illinois. He was Colonel on the staff of General-in-Chief Thomas G. Lawler, receiving the appointment November, 1894. He was a member of the Board of Supervisors of Knox County at the time of his death, and by them, resolutions of respect and condolence were passed.
In his religious belief, Mr. Bunker was a Congregationalist. In his political faith, he was a republican, and labored earnestly for the cause of that party.
He was married May 31, 1873, to Mary Isabell Carpenter, daughter of Asaph N. and Mary E. (Winterbottom) Carpenter. Along the paternal line of her ancestors, is found Thomas Carpenter, her great-grandfather, who was born in Massachusetts. Her great-grandmother was Cloa Carpenter, born in the same State. Her grandfather was Asaph Carpenter, born at Rehoboth, Massachusetts, and her grandmother was Caroline Carpenter, born in the same town.
Her maternal line of ancestors reaches back to her great-grandfather, Peter Carpenter, and to her great grandmother, Nancy Carpenter, both born in Massachusetts. Her grandfather was Lease Winterbottom, a native of England, and her grandmother was Sarah Lewis, born in Connecticut.
Mr. and Mrs. Bunker had but one child, Dwight Carpenter, who married Vina Penn. They have one child, Carrie Isabell.
Captain James L. Burkhalter
Captain James L. Burkhalter, son of David and Mary Ann (Marks) Burkhalter, was born in Allentown, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, April 15, 1835.
The Burkhalters are Swiss and came originally from the Canton of Berne. The name, which signifies “Keeper of the Castle”, is very common in Switzerland. Ulrich Burkhalter came to this country in 1732, and on August 11, took the oath of allegiance in William Penn’s Colony. He purchased three hundred acres of land in Burks County (now Lehigh), in Whitehall Township, just north of Allentown. It was here that the father of Captain Burkhalter was born.
Ulrich had a son Peter, who was Captain Burkhalter’s great-great-grandfather, and who possessed the landed estate of his father. He was a man of prominence. He was naturalized in 1761; was County Commissioner in 1787; was a member of the State Convention in the same year; was a member of the Pennsylvania Assembly for several terms; and was a Representative in Congress from 1791 to 1794. He was also Captain of a company of the Northampton Association, and saw active service during the Revolution in the Jerseys. Peter Burkhalter died in 1806. He had a son whose name was John Peter, and the latter had a son whose name was Henry, the grandfather of James L. Henry was the father of fourteen children, twelve of whom lived to maturity—six sons and six daughters. The third son, David, was the father of Captain Burkhalter.
Captain Burkhalter’s life is full of incident and interest. Both his patriotism and his manhood have made him a man of mark. The “War Governor,” Richard Yates, appointed him recruiting officer under the call of President Lincoln for 300,000 volunteers. He recruited Company “G” of the Eighty-third and Company “F” of the Eighty-sixth Illinois Volunteers. He then enlisted as a private in Company “F” and was elected Captain.
Under this rank, he commanded his company through its many campaigns. He was detailed for various other duties, such as building bridges and roads. As Prevost Marshal and later as Inspector General by appointment of General George H. Thomas, he served on staff duty under Generals McCook, Fearing, Morgan, Davis, and Slocum. He campaigned in very many different States—Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia—and was one of “Sherman’s Bummers” in that famous march through Georgia to the Sea. At the close of the war, he took part in the grand review of the armies at Washington.
Alongside the Captain’s military record, his civil record is worthy of mention. He had held various public offices, such as Police Magistrate and Town Clerk in Maquon, County Treasurer of Knox County for eleven consecutive years, and Supervisor from the City of Galesburg for five terms. In January, 1883, he was elected president of the Farmer’s and Mechanics’ Bank, which position he still holds.
His political creed is republican. He is strictly a party man. He is an uncompromising believer in republican principles, and he follows them to the end. His religious creed is broad, and his impulses are benevolent. He is a believer in the righteousness of good works.
Captain Burkhalter was married to Martha E. Adle, December 2, 1858. To them were born eight children: Charles F., Henry L., James W., Desdemona, John D., Nellie L., Robert P., and Alvin P.
Burner, Milton D; Farmer; Cedar Township; where he was born January 30, 1844; educated in the common schools. His father, Daniel Green Burner, was born in Kentucky, July 07, 1814, and came to Knox County in 1830 with his father, Isaac Burner, who died near Knoxville July 07, 1860. Daniel G. Burner was a firm friend of Abraham Lincoln, being a clerk in his store at New Salem, Illinois. After coming to Knox County he worked for a limited time at the carpenter's trade, and assisted in building the first court house at Knoxville. Later he began farming and still resides on his farm near Knoxville. On June 24, 1838, he was married to Melissa, daughter of John B. and Casander Dills Gumm; five Children were born to them: John G., a farmer living near Eldorado, Kansas; Milton D; Casander, who was the wife of Clate Swigert, and died February 06, 1892; Susan, wife of Oliver Custer, a resident of Cedar Township; and Jane, wife of Robert Mount of Des Moines, Iowa. Mrs. Burner died June 09, 1953. Mr. Burner married Elizabeth Martz, who died February 27, 1877. By this union there were three children; Mary, Ellen, and Ida, all deceased. In August, 1868, Mr. Burner was married to Susanna C., daughter of John and Rebecca Lighter Burns. Eleven children were born to them: Edwin G., who married Addie Graham of Cuba, Illinois, June 17, 1897, and is a hardware merchant of Chillicothe, Illinois; Willis J., a graduate of Hedding College, now a preacher at Irvington, Indiana, married Lulu Burr, of LaHarpe, Illinois, and has two children: Margaret and Jarvis; James A., City Marshal of Chillicothe, Henry L., and employee of Abingdon Steam Laundry; and Melissa R., a teacher in the public Schools at Abingdon; Georgia, who resides at Knoxville with her aged grandfather; Etta M.; Bertha J.,; Jessie A.; Mina E.; and Francis A., who lives with her parents. Mr. Burner and family worship at the Christian Church, Abingdon. In politics, he is a democrat. He takes especial interest in public affairs, and has held the office of School Trustee for twenty years.
Colonel Clark E. Carr
Colonel Clark E. Carr was born at Boston Corners, Erie County, New York, May 20, 1836. He was the son of Clark M. and Delia (Torrey) Carr. His parents were intelligent and painstaking people, and gave their children all the advantages possible in those days. His mother died when he was three years old, and is buried at Boston Corners. When he was nine years old, his father married Fanny Le Yau, who became a devoted and affectionate mother to the children. The family came West around the Lakes, in March, 1850, landing in Chicago. Here teams were purchased, and they made their journey in “prairie schooners” to Henry County, Illinois, locating on a farm near Cambridge. In the Autumn of 1851, the family removed to Galesburg, where the father and his second wife lived and died.
Colonel Carr’s paternal ancestry reaches back to Caleb Carr, who died while Colonial Governor of Rhode Island, and to Rev. John Clark, who was driven out of the Massachusetts colony for preaching the Baptist doctrine. Like Roger Williams, John Clark went to Rhode Island, then a wilderness, and afterwards became its Governor. The Colonel’s great-grandmother was a Miss Clark, descended from Governor John Clark, and Clark has been the Christian name of his grandfather, of his father, of himself, and of his son.
Colonel Carr’s early educational advantages were of the better sort, and he judiciously and wisely improved his opportunities. He attended the district school in the village of his nativity, until he was eleven years of age. He then went to Springville Academy, Erie County, New York, where he remained two years. At fourteen he arrived in Galesburg. Immediately, he entered Knox Academy and afterwards the Collegiate Department of Knox College, leaving at the end of the sophomore year to commence the study of law. He first entered the Law School at Poughkeepsie, New York, and subsequently, the Albany Law School, graduating in 1857. His first co-partnership in the practice of his profession was with Thomas Harrison, and three years later, with Hon. O. F. Price, under the firm name of Carr and Price. In March, 1861, as a just acknowledgment of his services on the stump, he was appointed by President Lincoln Postmaster of Galesburg, which position he held for twenty-four years.
Early in the War of the Rebellion, Governor Yates appointed him Colonel on his staff, and to its close, Colonel Carr performed his duties faithfully, such as assisting in the organization of regiments at Springfield, visiting the army in the field, and bringing home the sick and wounded. Governor Yates said that no man outside of the army did more efficient service. He was constantly active, also, in the interest of the government, in awakening by his speeches throughout Illinois, a patriotic and living public sentiment; often speaking with Governor Yates and others in support of the State and National administration. In 1862, when an attempt was made to turn out all the republican State officers of Illinois, Colonel Carr and other patriotic men came as champions of their cause before the people, and succeeded in keeping the State Government in the control of Governor Yates and his colleagues. In September, 1863, a great mass meeting was held in Chicago for the purpose of sustaining President Lincoln in issuing the Emancipation Proclamation. It was here, from the Court House steps, that Colonel Carr made one of the greatest speeches of his life. It was published in the Chicago papers and circulated throughout the country.
Colonel Carr has always shown himself to be a public spirited man.
He has held several offices in the city of his adoption. He was a delegate to the National Convention, held at Baltimore in 1864, which re-nominated President Lincoln. He was a delegate from the State-at-large to the National Convention in 1884, which nominated Blaine and Logan. He was a member of the committee on the platform resolutions, of which committee President McKinley was chairman.
It is almost needless to say that Colonel Carr is and always was a republican. He has spoken in almost every northern State in advocacy of republican principles. He also made many literary addresses, and his services in both the political and literary field are still in great demand. He spoke at the first meeting in favor of the Hennepin Canal, held at Ottawa many years ago, and was present at the Willard Hall meeting in Washington, and at other meetings favoring the enterprise. A great event in which Colonel Carr bore a conspicuous part was in the organization of the Gettysburg Association. Commissioners from the several States whose soldiers had participated in that battle constituted the Association. Colonel Carr was appointed commissioner for Illinois by the Governor. The dead bodies were to be consigned to their graves, and headstones erected, before the cemetery was finally turned over to the general Government. It was this Association that invited President Lincoln and his Cabinet to be present, and Edward Everett to deliver the oration at the dedicatory exercises, and it was Colonel Carr that suggested and urged that Lincoln also be invited to speak. All these commissioners sat on the stage, when the great patriotic President delivered that celebrated address.
Colonel Carr has been honored by being called to high positions, and he had honored the positions to which he has been called.
Under President Harrison’s administration, he was appointed Minister Resident and Consul General to Denmark. While a conference of Consuls General, of which he was a member, was in session in Paris, he received notice from Washington of his promotion to the rank of Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary, in which position he represented our country at that brilliant court for four years. As Minister, Colonel Carr performed signal service in the interest of the World’s Fair and for the commerce of the United States. He served his country faithfully for four years as Minister of Copenhagen, and received the highest commendations from the Government.
Colonel Carr is entitled to great credit for the part he took in inducing the Santa Fe Company to build the line of their railway through Galesburg. The company made several surveys with the design of finding the shortest practical line to Chicago. Orders were issued to adopt the line about twelve miles south of Galesburg. Through the efforts of Colonel Carr, the company was induced to prospect a line through this city, which was finally adopted upon certain conditions. While the citizens contributed generously to the work of the complying with those conditions, but for the efforts of Colonel Carr, the Santa Fe Railway would have gone direct from Fort Madison to Streator, leaving Galesburg to one side.
Colonel Carr also took a deep interest in the Omaha Exposition. He was President of the Illinois commission, composed of twenty members appointed from different parts of the State. The commission erected a beautiful building on the grounds, which became a popular resort. The affairs of this commission were so well managed as to elicit the highest commendations. An unexpended portion of the appropriation of nearly $7,000 was left in the State Treasury. For this, much credit is due to the president of the commission.
Maurice James Chase, M.D.
son of Benjamin Chapman and Eliza (Royce) Chase, was born in Cornish, Sullivan County, NH, March 4, 1826. His father was a farmer, and owing to conditions induced by material impressions, was born into this world bereft of two important faculties - hearing and speech. His mother's domestic feelings were unusually strong, and her tender sympathies made her efficient in the care of the sick and distressed.
The first settlement of Cornish by the Chases is quite romantic. About the year 1700, George Gifford, of Massachusetts, ceded the township to Aquilla and Priscilla Chase, ancestors of M. J. Chase. They took all their personal effects in a row-boat up the Connecticut River and took possession of the ceded grant. Formerly in this township, the Chase family was very numerous. Most of the church and town offices were held by them. It was here that Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase was born. It is here that he and many of that name can trace their common ancestry.
Maurice James Chase received a thorough and practical education in the New England public schools of his time, which fitted him to enter upon a more advanced course of study at the Kimball Union Academy - an institution of national reputation. After finishing his academic course, he commenced in 1845 the study of medicine - a profession that he had selected in very early life. He was a student of the famous Dr. Dixi Crosby, who was president of the Medical Department of Dartmouth. He attended a full course of lectures at the Medical College at Woodstock VT and two full courses also, at Dartmouth. He graduated June 17, 1850, and soon thereafter settled in South Boston MA, in the practice of his profession. Thinking that there were broader fields of usefulness and influence in the West, he came to Indiana in February, 1854, and practiced there for two years. He then removed to Macomb IL and remained there until July, 1859, when he came to Galesburg, where he has been a successful practitioner for forty years.
Dr. Chase has earned an honorable distinction in the practice of his profession. His reputation for careful and painstaking treatment is acknowledged. His clinical instruction is full and complete, and his diagnosis of thousands of cases is a proof of his erudition and ability. As a physician, his labors have been crowned with success, and much of that success is due to the sympathy which he feels and expresses for his patients. He believes that care and attention are as important as medicine.
In religious belief, he is a Universalist. His creed is the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of man. He says of himself: "From my earliest recollections I have been a firm believer in prayer and communion with God, our Heavenly Father. It is a great duty and high privilege to keep and revere the first and the second great commandments of the New Testament."
Dr. Chase is a strong temperance man; nevertheless, politically, he affiliates with the republican party.
He was united in marriage to Lucy F. Crocker, March 15, 1849. There were born to them four children, two now living: Henry Maurice, born November 3, 1850, died March 5, 1854; Ella L., born December, 1853, died October, 1854; Henry Maurice, 2d, born February 9, 1860; Ella L., 2d, born March 30, 1856.
Henry M. Chase was married June 5, 1884, to Jane Ewing Phillips. They have two children: Phillips M., born April 6, 1886; and Margaret Evertson, born December 22, 1889. Ella L. Chase was married March 30, 1874, to Arthur W. Conger, who died in 1890. Three children were born to them: Lucy M., born January 22, 1875; Delia, born December 4, 1886; and Etheline, born October 4, 1888. Her second marriage was with Hon. Howard Knowles, March 4, 1896.
"Sow a character and you reap a destiny".
The truth of this maxim finds abundant exemplification in the life and labors of George Churchill. There is scarcely a department inaugurated for the improvement of this city, or for the bettering of the condition of its people, without a trace of his handiwork. He has been "part and parcel" of the city of Galesburg and Knox College almost from their very inception, and their history would be incomplete and almost worthless without the embodiment of the life-work of Professor George Churchill.
Dr. Churchill, son of Norman and Anna (Eggleston) Churchill, was born in Herkimer County NY, April 2, 1829. His father came to Galesburg early in the Fall of 1836, and purchased a ten-acre lot on West Main Street, know as the "Churchill home." Into this "home" he moved with his family in 1839, where he lived and died, an honored citizen, September 20, 1886, at the advanced age of nearly eighty-seven years. He was the son of Reverend Jesse Churchill and was born in Hubbardton VT, November 5, 1799.
The early educational advantages of Dr. George Churchill were of the kind incident to a new country. At that time, the necessities of the family and home had to be supplied and the culture of the mind was treated more as an incidental matter. However, young George's youth was given to the study of such books as were at his command, and to the contemplation of the open book of Nature for which he had an innate fondness. He entered Knox College as a student in the Preparatory department in the first year of its history. With thorough preparation, he afterwards entered the college classes and graduated in 1851.
After graduation, there was no time afforded him for recreation or rest. His first year was spent as civil engineer on the Central Military Tract Railroad, which afterwards became part of the main line of the Burlington system.
Appreciating the inefficiency of the public schools of Galesburg and vicinity, and desiring to supplant them with a better system, he next made a trip to Europe, in order to make a most thorough inspection of the Prussian schools. For this tour, he had exceptional facilities. Letters from the Secretary of State and from other influential men were given him, and he was thus enabled to gain an accurate knowledge of the Prussian system of education. On his return to Galesburg, he addressed himself to the task of arousing public sentiment in favor of an improved school system, that should, in some measure, be comparable to the one he had been studying. No only his time and energy were lavished without stint, but his slender salary as teacher was encroached upon to secure the assistance of Honorable Henry Barnard, of Connecticut, who afterwards received the first appointment as Commissioner of Education for the United States. The co-operation of the various educational interests ultimately resulted in procuring a special charter by which the former district schools were consolidated, and the foundations of the present system, with all its essential features, were laid. The Board of Education has shown a just appreciation of Dr. Churchill's services in this direction, by naming what was called the Grammar School the "Churchill School", and by adopting, January, 14, 1896, the following resolution:
Resolved, That we tender a vote of thanks to Professor Churchill, thus expressing our high appreciation for the efforts he made in securing a higher education for the public schools of Galesburg by a special charter, which passed the Legislature in 1859; and that we extend to him an invitation to be the guest of this Board to visit our schools and see if we have come up to his expectation, both in buildings and in teaching.
Dr. Churchill has been fully appreciated by his fellow citizens, and at their hands has held many positions of honor and trust. For thirteen years, he was a member of the Board of Education. For twenty-two years, he served in the capacity of City Engineer. For two terms, he served as Alderman. For eight years, he was a member of the Board of Park Commissioners. For twenty-three years, he held a position on the Library Board, which position he held until his death, which occurred in September, 1899. Besides all these extra duties and labors, which were performed acceptably and well, and which demanded the need of praise from every citizen, he filled a Professor's Chair in Knox College for the long period of forty-four years.
Dr. Churchill was born to be useful. He was born to do good. He was born especially as an educator of youth. Nobly and grandly, he fulfilled his mission. In his instruction, he was lucid and thorough, and, whatever the subject taught, he never failed to interest. Thousands of men and women, scattered over our land, as the evening shadows fall and as their wandering thoughts revert to the scenes of their school days, will picture the stalwart form of Dr. George Churchill. They will recall with deeper affection his peculiar and interesting manner of teaching and his many quaint and always instructive speeches. They will ever regard his name and Knox College as one and inseparable.
As a citizen, Dr. Churchill was deservedly popular. He was intelligent, and amiable in disposition; honorable in purpose and character; charitable towards the unfortunate; kind and loving in all domestic relations; a friend to the poor and needy; and a lover of all that makes for righteousness and is a benefit to the human race. He was a practical and consistent man and won his way by his urbanity and vigorous common sense.
In religious faith, Dr. Churchill was a Congregationalist. When sixteen years of age, he became a member of the Old First Church. At the time of his death, September 10, 1899, he was a member of its successor, the Central Church. He served forty years as deacon; twenty-five years as Superintendent of the Sabbath School, and more than twenty-five years as leader of the choir. He was also a member of the building committee of the present church structure. He was director and President of the Mechanics' Homestead and Loan Association since its organization in 1882, the assets and disbursements of which to the present time amount to two and a half million dollars.
Dr. Churchill was thrice married. His first wife was Clara A. Hurd. To them was born one son, Milton E., now Dean of the Faculty of Illinois College, Jacksonville.
His second wife was Ada H. Hayes. Of this union, one daughter and two sons were born: Mary Hayes, who died July 7, 1863; Charles E., a lawyer in Chicago; and George B., a hardware merchant of Galesburg.
His third wife was Ellen Sanborn Watkins. One son was born to them, William David. By a former marriage, his third wife had a daughter, Mrs. Nellie Sanborn (Watkins) Wetherbee.
Merritt M. Clark
a patriot soldier during the Civil War, was born in Manchester, Bennington County VT, January 10, 1835. He was the youngest son of Chester and Saviah (Matteson) Clark, and was left fatherless when only eleven years of age. In 1851, he came to Galesburg with his mother, and lived here the remainder of his life.
Mr. Clark acquired the rudiments of his education in the district schools of his native State. Afterwards, he supplemented this instruction with a more thorough course of study. He matriculated in Knox College, and graduated with high honors in 1857. After graduation, he read law with the firm of Smith and Ford, and was soon admitted to practice in the courts of the State. In the Spring of 1861, a law partnership was formed with Judge A. A. Smith and E. P. Williams, which continued until 1862. Imbued with patriotic fervor, he entered the army as a commissioned officer, and served, though with impaired health, until the close of the war. His patriotism and his love for his companions in arms are shown by the following incident: A member of the law firm, in which he was once a partner, urged him to obtain a discharge from the service on account of his poor health, and with a true Roman spirit offered to take his place. He replied, that he could not ask such a favor, when his companions, suffering as much as he, could not obtain a release. Having been a partaker with them in the triumphs of battle and the shouts of victory, he could not desert them in an hour of darkness, disease, or death. With an heroic spirit and with a manly courage that did not quail in the smoke of battle, he remained at his post until victory was won.
After Mr. Clark's discharge, he returned to his home, where he remained, highly honored, until his death. Immediately, he was elected Police Magistrate, which office he filled until the Spring of 1866. He then formed a law partnership with E. P. Williams, which was dissolved in 1871 on account of Mr. Clark's ill-health. During 1871, he was elected City Attorney, which office he held for one year.
As a lawyer, Mr. Clark possessed certain eminent characteristics. He was fair and honest, and a sense of justice and equity seemed to control his actions. He was accurate and painstaking in cases at court, and his quick perceptions and versatile mind enabled him to discover the weak and strong points in trial or argument. As a soldier, he virtually gave his life to his country. Disease, contacted on the field of battle, did not quench the fire of patriotism that was burning within him, or turn him from the path of duty. His name is worthy to be enrolled on the scroll of fame with the patriots of his time. As man and citizen, he bore an unsullied character. His demeanor was pleasing, but not commanding. He was charitable in his speech and acts, and his kindly nature drew around him many friends. He lived a full life of kindness and love, and is worthy to have inscribed upon his tombstone this epitaph - an honest man.
Mr. Clark was a Congregationalist, a member of the Old First Church. His political faith was republican. He was married September 2, 1857, to Celia A. Tinker, a daughter of Rev. Charles E. and Mary (Robinson) Tinker. Rev. Charles E. Tinker was a Home Missionary about 1840.
To Mr. and Mrs. Clark were born seven children: Mary Ina, died in childhood; Luella M.; Chester M.; Charles T.; Jay C.; Willis J.; and Alice Pauline.
Chauncey Sill Colton
Chauncey Sill Colton was a remarkable man. His name is as imperishable as the name of the city of his adoption. A halo surrounds it, which will grow brighter and brighter, as the history of Galesburg and its early struggles shall be known and read. Without him, this city of beauty and refinement, of schools and colleges, as it is today, could never have been. It was he, with the aid of others that brought the great Burlington system to this city. Without this railroad, Galesburg would be a “deserted village” on the plain. He was its chief promoter and the only director living on the line of the road for a quarter of a century, during which time the original railway, of eighty miles in length, expanded to five thousand miles. All the extensions in Illinois were made on his suggestion and insistence; and he was the first to urge its extension beyond the Mississippi. All honor is due to him for incessant labors in building up the city of his home. Like many a great man and worker for humanity, he built wiser than he knew; but future generations will enjoy the fruits of his labors.
Mr. Colton was a native of Springfield, Pennsylvania, born September 21, 1800. His parents were Justin and Abigail (Sill) Colton and were natives of Massachusetts. They lived for one year in Pennsylvania, and then returned to their New England home. Young Chauncey spent his boyhood at Longmeadow, Massachusetts, with his grandfather, whose precepts and advice did much to establish his character. He attended the academy at Monson, Massachusetts, and improved all the means of learning there given. But his large acquirements were obtained in the great school of practical experience in life.
Mr. Colton was of English descent. His American progenitor was Quartermaster George Colton, who came to this country from Suttancofield, Sussex County, England, in 1640, and settled at Windsor, Hartford County, Connecticut. His grandfather, Captain Gad Colton, was a soldier in the Revolutionary War.
In 1820, after finishing his course of study at the academy, Mr. Colton went to Monson, Maine, and resided there for ten years. But the opportunities amid the rocks, mountains, and rugged barrenness of New England seemed to him too narrow and confined. He therefore resolved to try his fortune in the Great West, then an almost unexplored wilderness. In June 1836, he took up his abode in this city and lived here, an honored and highly respected citizen, the remainder of his life. His first occupation was in the mercantile line, in which he was eminently successful. But his chief business, of interest to this section, was the buying and shipping of its staple products. He shipped the first beef and pork, the first wheat and corn from central Illinois. The route of shipments was down the Illinois and Mississippi rivers to New Orleans, thence by sea, to New York and Liverpool. He favored every enterprise which was for the advancement and interest of the city and State. He was one of the founders of the First National Bank, in which he was a director for many years. He was also one of the founders of the Farmers’ and Mechanics’ Bank, in which he was the largest stockholder and its first President. His money and his counsel aided much in the erection of Union Block and other buildings. He built and occupied the first house in Galesburg. He also built the first school house in the town, and paid for it himself. Some years later, the frame of the old First Church was raised, but stood uncovered for about two years, until Mr. Colton offered to complete it himself, and let the members of the society pay their subscriptions when able to do so. Indeed, from the day of his arrival to the time of his death, it would be difficult to mention a worthy enterprise that he did not favor and assist. Public spirited, high-minded, possessing great native talents and a keen judgment, he readily comprehended matters and in every undertaking, knew what was best to be done.
Although not a church member until late in life, Mr. Colton always considered churches and schools of primary importance in a community.
He was a member of the Old First Church. At the organization of the Brick Congregational Church, under Dr. Edward Beecher, he united with it and remained a communicant as long as he lived, and gave liberally for its support.
He had also a great faith in Knox College, and in the work that this institution would accomplish for the community here and for the world at large. For forty years, he was a member of the Board of Trustees, and nearly as long a member of the Executive Committee. No college ever had a more faithful worker; he labored for its prosperity and success, and gave his time and money freely. His services were ever regarded as valuable, because of his keen perception, sound judgment, and practical knowledge in all business relations.
Mr. Colton never sought office and was not a politician. In early life, he was a democrat, afterwards a free soiler, and lastly, a republican. He believed more in the politics of principle than in the politics of men.
Mr. Colton was married in Maine, January 5, 1826, to Emily H., daughter of Samuel McLanathan, of Sangerville. There were born to them four children: Harriet S. (Noteware); Sarah M., of this city; Colonel John B., of Kansas City; and Hon. Francis Colton, of Washington, D.C., formerly Consul at Venice, Italy.
In such a life as Chauncey Colton’s there is much to admire and commend. His manners were simple and unaffected. He was an example of true manhood and possessed all those qualities which ennoble and dignify human nature. He was intelligent and able to meet any emergency. He had quick perceptions, and was not easily betrayed into difficulties. He neglected no duty; he thrust aside no obligation.
Milton Lemmon Comstock
Milton Lemmon Comstock, A.M., Ph.D., was born in Crosby Township, Hamilton County, Ohio, October 19, 1824. There is a tradition that the progenitor of the Comstock family in England was a German Baron, Kulmstock, who emigrated to that country about A.D. 1500. A village named Culmstock exists among the Down Hills, between Exeter and Taunton, and William Comstock, born in 1608, came with his wife, Elizabeth, from southwestern England to Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1635. Their fourth child, John, with his wife, Abigail, settled in Lyme, Connecticut. William, the third of the seven children of John, born January 9, 1669, had two children, the second of whom was William, born January 16, 1695 (Lyme Records, page 428, defective from fire). James, the eldest of William’s four children, was the great-grandfather of Milton L.
The parents of Milton L., Joab and Jane (Lemmon) Comstock, were born in Ohio and Maryland, respectively; his paternal grandparents, Joab and Eunice (Willey) Comstock, were born in Connecticut; his maternal grandparents, William and Margaret (McCaine) Lemmon, were born near Armagh, Ireland; his paternal great-grandparents were James and Thankful (Crosby) Comstock, and Ephraim and Patience (Becket) Willey; on the maternal side, John and Jane (McCrea) Lemon (name so spelled originally), and Archibald and Elizabeth (Trimble) McCaine. His grandfather, Joab Comstock, came with his family from Hadlyme, Connecticut, to Ohio, in 1801, and settled in the northwestern part of Hamilton County, where he made a farm out of a dense forest; he died in Ohio in 1825, and his widow died near Burlington, Iowa, in 1858. Joab, the fifth of his children who attained maturity, was born February 9, 1804, removed to Iowa in 1839, and died in Burlington in 1882. He was a farmer and a local Methodist preacher for nearly fifty years, a kind and faithful man. William Lemmon, Mr. Comstock’s maternal grandfather, came to America in 1801, and to Ohio in 1819; he was a weaver; he died in 1851. His daughter Jane, who became the wife of Joab Comstock, father of Milton L., was born in Maryland, February 15, 1807, and died near Burlington, Iowa, in 1875.
Milton L. Comstock was the eldest of eleven children. His schooling began when he was four years of age, in a log school house, which had split logs for seats, and a stick chimney. His winters were spent in school, and his summers on the farm. After his removal to Iowa, his time was mostly occupied in improving their farm in the new country. Besides the ordinary work upon a farm, his experience included breaking prairie, making rails, riving and shaving shingles, running a shingle machine and sawmill, quarrying stone with drill and powder, running a thrashing machine, raising and caring for flax, and the propagation and culture of fruit trees.
At the age of twenty Mr. Comstock began a life of study and teaching. His physical welfare was assured by early training and habits of temperance, and during forty-six years of teaching he lost only three days from sickness. In September, 1844, he entered Knox Academy, Galesburg, Illinois, with a fair common school education, but never having seen an Algebra or a Latin Grammar. He studied a year with all possible diligence, for his dominant wish had been to possess knowledge. In June, 1845, he returned home, taught school, studied and taught in Yellow Springs Academy, Des Moines County, Iowa, and after two years returned to Galesburg, entered Knox College, and at the end of four years of untiring study, had conferred upon him the degree A.B., June 26,1851.
July 30,1851, he married Cornelia Ann, second daughter of Norman and Anna (Eggleston) Churchill, of Galesburg, formerly of Herkimer County, New York. Mrs. Comstock was born at Winfield, New York, March 17, 1831, and was a granddaughter of Rev. Jesse Churchill of Wethersfield. Her family, on the maternal side, can be traced to an ancestor who settled at Dorchester, Massachusetts, in 1635. She completed the Ladies’ Course in Knox College, except one study; taught school several terms; taught in the Haynes Academy, Cherry Grove, Knox County, and sang in the choir of the “Old First” Church for thirty-five years. Mr. and Mrs. Comstock have had six children, four of whom are living: Cornelia Belle, Clara Emily, Clarence Elmer, and Ada Heletia, all of whom are graduates of Knox College. Cornelia B. is the wife of Will W. Hammond, a lawyer of Peoria, Illinois, who graduated from Knox College in 1878; she is a member of the choir of Plymouth Congregational Church. Clara E. is a stenographer and Notary Public, at Peoria. Clarence E. is in charge of the Mathematical Department of Bradley Polytechnic Institute, Peoria; he is leader of the choir, deacon, and trustee of Plymouth Congregational Church. Ada H. is a member of the choir of Central Congregational Church, Galesburg.
Mr. Comstock taught three years in Knox Academy. In 1854, the degree A.M. was conferred upon him by his Alma Mater. In the summer of the same year, he removed to Des Moines County, Iowa, and engaged his horticultural pursuits, and during the three years spent in that occupation he was, most of the time, Editor of the Iowa Farmer. In September, 1857, he became a Professor in Yellow Springs College, Iowa. In September, 1858, he came to Knox College as Assistant Professor of Mathematics, and in 1861, became Professor in that department. He discharged the duties of the position till June, 1898, when he became Professor Emeritus. In addition to the pure mathematics, he taught Astronomy, Physics, and Meteorology. He was secretary of the Faculty for twenty years. Devoting an average of two hours a day to outside studies, he spent at least two years upon each of the following branches: Trigonometry, analytic geometry, differential calculus, integral calculus, and astronomy; he also devoted considerable time to quaternion, determinants, trilinear co-ordinates, and differential equations, and in 1879, when Lombard University conferred upon him the degree Ph. D., he did not hesitate to accept the honor from fear of being criticized for not being properly qualified.
Mr. Comstock became a member of the M. E. Church in 1840, but withdrew from that church on account of the slavery agitation, and joined with others in forming a Wesleyan Methodist Church in 1844. He united with the “Old First” Church of Galesburg in 1851, and was elder and clerk in that church for twenty-seven years; he sang in the choir twenty-five years, and represented the church in various associations; he is now a deacon in the Central Church of Galesburg.
His writings are confined to a few articles in different mathematical journals and in newspapers, over his name and the signatures: “X. Y. Z,” “C,” “K” and Ecleme.” He joined a temperance society in 1833. He has been a republican ever since that party was organized.
Hon. Zelotes Cooley
Hon. Zelotes Cooley sought his fortune in the West at a very early period, when Knox County contained here and there only a few hamlets and the virgin soil was almost unbroken. He was a large factor in its development and growth form the day he set foot on her soil to the moment of his death. In his manner of living, he was plain and simple and was never guilty of ostentatious display. In honesty and moral rectitude, the true dignity of his character was shown. His suave disposition and his inborn gentility fitted him especially to deal with men, and to these qualities his great success in business and in life is principally due. He had keen perceptions and a sound judgment, and could unravel the machinations and evil designs of men as by intuition. The frivolous was no part of his nature, and consequently he took life as a serious business. He was always known for his strict honesty and his fair dealings with his fellowmen. His unyielding firmness in justice and right begat confidence and as a result, place and honor were bestowed upon him. He honored every office that he was called to fill, because he regarded himself as a true servant of the people.
Judge Cooley came from a long line of Puritan ancestors. He was born November 10, 1808, in East Windsor, Connecticut. He removed to Glastonbury with his parents in 1816. At sixteen, he went to Hartford to learn the carpenter’s trade and afterwards to Westfield, Massachusetts, and later to Poughkeepsie, New York, where he engaged in the grocery business until 1837. He next went to Philadelphia, then down the Ohio River, up the Mississippi, through Illinois to La Grange. He then went to Quincy, then to Macomb and Carthage. At Carthage, he was employed to build the Court House. In 1838, he came to Knox County. With a partner, Mr. Alvah Wheeler, he built the Court House at Knoxville, drawing the plans himself. He was engaged as a contractor and builder until 1846, when he was appointed County Assessor. He was elected for ten years, when he commenced the practice of law.
In politics, Judge Cooley was a democrat. In religion, he was not connected with any order, but believed in the Golden Rule and in loving and serving his fellowmen. He was charitable, always bestowing his means judiciously whenever a worthy object was presented. His several bequests to St. Mary’s at Knoxville, and to the hospital, Knox College, and the Universalist Church of Galesburg sufficiently attest the character of his benevolence and charities.
He married Miss Julia A. Hanks, of Connecticut in 1833. Of this union, two daughters are still living—Mrs. David W. Bradshaw and Mrs. Samuel L. Charles.
Rev. Joseph Costa
Rev. Joseph Costa, O. C., R. D., was born October 18, 1822, in Pettinengo, Province of Biella, about thirty miles northeast of Turin, Italy. His father’s name was Antonio Costa, and his mother’s, Angela Maria Facio. His father was occupied in land-industries, and was also employed in running a tailoring establishment.
There were four brothers in the family, of whom Joseph was the youngest and the only one in the ministry. The others followed other professions. The family records go as far back as six hundred years from the present time. Some of the members along the line were priests.
Father Costa received the first rudiments of letters and music in his native town. Subsequently, he entered a college called “Bachette,” and began his studies of Latin under Rev. Professor W. Scaglia. Later on, he pursued his studies in classics in the city of Biella, and after an interval of two years of rest, he began his course of philosophy in the College Melerio Rosmini in the city of Domodossoia under Professor Parma, continuing for two years. Having passed his examination in philosophy and being a member of the Order of Charity, he applied himself, under able professors, to the study of Divinity in the Rosminan Institute at Stresa on the borders of Lago Maggiore.
In 1851, as a member of the order, he was sent by the General, the Rev. Antonio Rosmini, to the English Missions belonging to the same order. In this, his new country, he reviewed his theology under Professor Caccia and prepared for the reception of Holy Orders.
On February 18, 1853, he was examined and ordained Priest in the Church of Oscott College, by the Rt. Rev. Bernard Ullathorne, Bishop of Birmingham. As a priest, he labored for eleven years in Great Britain, either doing parish work or preaching at missions or teaching in college.
In 1864, at the request of Dr. Yunker, Bishop of Alton, Illinois, he was sent by the General of his order to work in that Bishop’s diocese.
In the United States, the field of his labors was chiefly in Illinois—Springfield, Jacksonville, El Paso, Lincoln—and finally in 1877, he was sent to Galesburg by Dr. John L. Spalding, first Bishop of Peoria, for the social purpose of establishing Parochial Schools. From that date to the present time, his labors have been devoted to the wants and improvements in that city for the Catholic population.
Since his arrival here, Father Costa has worked earnestly and faithfully for the up-building of the church to which he belongs. In the Spring of 1878, the erection of St. Joseph’s Academy was commenced, and in the Autumn of 1879, it was opened for use, with about ten teachers and four hundred pupils. Stevens and Parry, of this city, were the builders. The cost of the building, including heating apparatus and excluding furniture was $16,858.13.
The convent contiguous to the Academy was erected partly by Jacob Westfall, of Peoria. Failing to complete the contract, the building was finished under the direction of Father Costa. The work was commenced in 1880 and finished in 1881. It cost $11,388.52.
The ground upon which Corpus Christi Church stands cost $4,885. The contract of the building was given to Matthias Schnell, of Rock Island. It cost, including heater, seats, bell, etc., $38,611.43. Corpus Christi dwelling cost $5,500, including heating apparatus.
St. Mary’s Primary, on the corner of Fourth and Seminary streets, cost $2,500, without the furniture.
The lot on which Corpus Christi Lyceum stands was purchased for five thousand dollars. The building and furniture cost about $42,000. It was commenced in 1891 and furnished in 1894. This edifice is private property of the Order of Charity in this country.
Father Costa has done much in the erection of buildings in this city. For that purpose and the benefit of his church, he had expended more than $125,000. In the work of his hands, he has been diligent and fervent in spirit. As a man, he is kind and gentle in manners, temperate in speech, unyielding in his convictions, and firm in his ideas of duty and right. He is a Catholic, and lives and labors for the Catholic faith. He comprehends the duties and responsibilities of American citizenship, and in a word, has lived a life above reproach.
Alfred M. Craig
is a man of characteristic personality. His look and his general bearing indicate decision of character and strong intellectual endowments. He is a native of Illinois, and was born in Paris, Edgar County, Jan. 15, 1831. His father was David Craig, a native of Pennsylvania, and his mother’s maiden name was Minta Ramey.
David Craig was of Irish descent and was born in Philadelphia. His parents came from the northern part of Ireland. David, when a young man removed to Kentucky; but being unwilling to live in a slave State, he came to Illinois in 1830. After remaining a short time in Edgar County, he finally settled in Fulton County, where Justice A. M. Craig was born.
Justice Craig’s father was a farmer, and it was on the farm that the lad was brought up. His early advantages for schooling were such as are incident to a new country and the life of a farmer boy. He attended school in winter, and worked on the farm in summer, until he entered upon a course of study at Knox College. In the fall of 1848, he became a member of the preparatory class, and was admitted to the freshman class in June 1849. With distinguished honor, he graduated in June 1853. After graduation, there was no halting or indecision as to his future course. Immediately he entered the law office of William C. Goudy of Lewiston, IL., and after one year’s study, was admitted to practice in all the courts of Illinois. In the fall of 1854, he opened an office in Knoxville, which was then the county seat of Knox County. By his perseverance and determination, he soon built up a large and lucrative practice in Knox and the adjoining counties. His skill and erudition in law are exemplified in the fact that he rarely, if ever, lost a case at court. He continued his practice until June 1873, when he was elected Justice of the Supreme Court of Illinois.
Justice Craig has richly earned the commendations and confidence of his fellow citizens. His knowledge of law and his fidelity in practice have opened to him places of honor and preferment. In 1856, he was appointed States Attorney by Governor Mattison for the Circuit, composed of the counties of Mercer, Henderson, Warren, Knox, and Fulton. The appointment was for the unexpired term of one year, caused by the resignation of William C. Goudy. In November 1861, he was elected County Judge of Knox County and assisted in forming the present constitution of the State.
Justice Craig has lived a successful life. He started in the world a poor boy and by his good judgment and great business sagacity, has become the owner of great possessions. He is President of the Bank of Galesburg, of which he is the largest stockholder, and his landed estates cover rich and extensive fields of territory. As a lawyer, he is profound and a great judge. For the correctness and justness of his decisions, his fame is unsurpassed. He is not an observer of conventionalities, and is no servile worshiper of court etiquette. He is plain in his manner, kind, social, and generous to his friends. He is a student of human nature, and has won distinction more by his practical common sense than by his knowledge of Latin or Greek. He has served his county and his State faithfully and well, and is entitled to the plaudits of all.
Justice Craig was married in Aug. 1857 to Elizabeth P. Harvey, daughter of C.K. Harvey, who was a lawyer of eminent ability. Mr. Harvey was born and educated in the State of Vermont. He came to Knox County at an early day, and built up a large practice in Knox and adjoining counties. He represented Knox County in the Constitutional Convention of 1847. He died at Knoxville in 1848, at the age of thirty-three.
Justice and Mrs. Craig have had four children, two now living: Dr. A. H., a druggist, and Captain Charles C., a lawyer, both living in this city.
Cramer, Benjamin, Farmer; Chestnut Township; born in Ohio, Jan. 10, 1839; educated in the common schools. His parents, William and Sarah (Shutes) Cramer, were natives of Ohio, and were born respectively Jan. 25, 1804 and Sept. 13, 1805, and died in 1875 and 1872. They were married Sept. 1, 1824. His maternal grandmother was Sarah Shutes, and his paternal grandfather was Adams Cramer.
Mr. Cramer was married to Louisa Haynes in November 1860, in Chestnut Township. They had four children: A. H., born Dec. 8, 1861; George E., born Nov. 22, 1863; Grace C., born Nov 5, 1869; and Asa, born Mar 13, 1877.
Mrs. Cramer was born in Orange Township, Knox Co. IL, Jan 30, 1842. She was the daughter of Herman L. and Gerilla Haynes, who died in Orange Township.
Mr. Cramer is a republican and has been Assessor for a number of terms: Road Commissioner two terms, and School Director for twenty years. He has been a dealer in grain and live-stock as well as a farmer. His farm of two hundred and fifteen acres is situated two and one-half miles southeast of DeLong on Sections 1, 3, 4, 9, and 10.
Mr. Cramer and his wife belong to the Methodist Church.
Levi Franklin Danforth
Levi Franklin Danforth, son of Oliver Cromwell and Eliza (Lincoln) Danforth, was born in Norton, Massachusetts, June 5, 1825. His father was a farmer, which occupation he pursued until the year of his death, 1828. He left four sons, two of whom passed the limit of the common age of man; one, Lemuel, still survives, who has been foreman of the Old Colony Car Shops for forty years, a position which he still holds.
Levi’s youth was spent on his father’s farm. His educational advantages were not the best, but he availed himself of all the instruction offered in the common schools of his native town, until he was seventeen years of age. He then left the paternal home for Pawtucket, Rhode Island, to learn the painter’s trade, at which he served as an apprentice for two years. After suffering from severe sickness induced by poisonous paints, he learned carpentry, which he followed until 1877. He afterwards engaged to a considerable extent in buying and selling real estate. In December, 1888, he opened a grocery store on Monmouth Boulevard, and continued in that business until August, 1889, when he was compelled to sell out on account of an affliction of his eyes.
Mr. Danforth with his wife made several trips across the continent, before he made his final settlement for life. In September, 1857, he went to California and pursued his trade in the vicinity of Mariposa Grove. He returned to Pawtucket in February, 1860, and in 1867, came to Galesburg, where he spent the remainder of his life.
Mr. Danforth from early youth was thrown upon his own resources. There were difficulties to overcome, which called into action the better qualities of his nature. He possessed executive ability, a determined will, efficiency and force. He was naturally social in his nature and loved his family, friends, and home.
He was sensitive, open-hearted, and self-reliant and thoroughly despised shams of every kind. He was generous and liberal, and at the same time, economical and saving. He did his own thinking, was tenacious of his opinions, but he accorded the same privilege to others that he asked for himself. His ways and means were his own, which gave to others and the impression of a positive character. He was fond of discussion and argument, and was inclined to the investigation of intricate questions. He was a lover of poetry and music and devoted his leisure hours to the enjoyment of verse and song. In a word, he was affectionate and kind, and lived the life of a temperate and upright citizen.
Mr. Danforth never connected himself with many of the various societies. His individuality was too strong and too independent to submit to society routine and society discipline. He once joined the Masonic Order, but was not an active member. He said that he loved his family and home too well to spend his evenings away from them. He was never connected with any church, but favored the morality and precepts therein taught.
In political faith, he was a republican, but not a strong partisan. He was once accosted by a friend who said to him, “Well, you will vote for Lincoln; he is a cousin of yours; your mother was a Lincoln”. His reply was, “The relationship is not near enough to do any harm.”
Mr. Danforth was twice married. H was united to his first wife in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, October 4, 1846. Her maiden name was Phebe Ann Alexander. To them were born five children, Eugene Franklin, Phebe Richmond, Levi Franklin, Ella Cook, and Walter Lincoln. These children all died in youth.
His second marriage was March 18, 1875, to Mary A. Pottinger, who survives him.
Simeon B. Davis
Simeon B. Davis was born in Ashland County, Ohio, December 7, 1836. His parents were Amos and Nancy (Crawford) Davis, natives of Ohio. His mother was a daughter of Colonel Samuel Crawford, an officer in the War of 1812.
Mr. Davis received a common school education in his native State, and took advantage of every educational opportunity afforded; and being a great reader has always kept abreast of the times. He located in McDonough County, Illinois, at the age of eighteen, where he soon engaged in teaching school, and where for eight years he was one of the most successful teachers of that county. He then engaged in farming and stock-raising for a number of years, shipping stock to the Chicago market. He still owns a farm in Hire Township, McDonough County. He afterwards removed to Macomb, Illinois, where he engaged in the monument business. In 1887, he came to Galesburg, where he has since been the leading marble and granite merchant of this section of the State.
Mr. Davis has been a prominent member of the republican party for many years. In 1880, he was elected to the Legislature, representing the counties of Warren and McDonough. At the regular session of 1881, and the special session of 1882, he was a member of several important committees, and rendered valuable and efficient service. Mr. Davis is a pleasing and impressive public speaker, and has rendered valuable service to his party during Presidential campaigns, both before and since coming to Knox County. Mr. Davis has always taken a lively interest in the advancement and improvement of the city of Galesburg. He is now serving his second term as Alderman from the Third Ward, which is but one of the many evidences of the respect and confidence of the people.
He is a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, having held official positions therein for many years, at present being one of the Trustees. He is a member of Veritas Lodge, Independent Order of Odd Fellows; a member of College City Lodge, Ancient Order of United Workmen, having served in all the chairs of these orders.
September 27, 1860, Mr. Davis was married to Artimesa Stambaugh, daughter of Rev. Adam Stambaugh. They are the parents of nine children: Emma; Eva; Margaret; Elsy A.; Steward A.; Alice J.; Louie May; James E.; and Stella, deceased.
Loyal Case Field
Loyal Case Field was born in Cornwall, Addison County, Vermont, February 29, 1824. He was the son of Luman and Abigail (DeLong) Field. In early life, the father was a school teacher, but afterwards devoted himself to farming. He left Vermont in 1835 and lived in Yates, Orleans County, New York, for two years. In May, 1837, he came with his family to Knoxville, this county, remaining there until October 8, when he removed to a farm he purchased at Center Point. Here he resided until his death, September, 1846. In religion, he was a Baptist; in politics, a republican. He was ever regarded as a worthy and upright citizen.
Loyal’s early educational advantages were limited. He made the best use possible of all the opportunities the common school of his native town afforded; but it was in the great school of experience that he was fitted for the active and responsible duties of life. While in school, he manifested a decidedly artistic taste. He had a fondness for drawing pictures of animals and natural scenery.
Soon after the arrival of the family at Knoxville, Loyal was engaged for four years as a clerk in the dry goods store of Joseph Gay, of Henderson. He was also clerk for Mr. Whistler, of Davenport, Iowa.
After his father’s death, he took care of the farming interest; settled the estate, and farmed for his mother’s family and himself from September 1846 to January 1852. He then sold the home farm and bought Mr. Wiley’s stove, tin, and hardware store in Galesburg. F. M. Smith being his partner, and E. C. Field a silent partner and bookkeeper. This firm of Field and Smith continued the hardware business for four years. He then became a leading member in the Frost Manufacturing Company, where he remained as President until his death. As a canvasser for jobs or contracts, or as manager at the office desk, he always manifested a superior talent for business, and was always known for honesty and fair dealing.
Under his advice and management, the firm prospered and gained a wide reputation.
Mr Field was never a seeker after office. Nevertheless, by reason of his ability and integrity, his fellow citizens demanded his services. In 1860-61 he held the office of Alderman, and in 1872 he was elected Mayor of the city of Galesburg.
In religious belief, Mr. Field was orthodox, although not a member of any church. He was generous almost to a fault, contributing liberally to all churches where he attended.
In political faith, he was an outspoken advocate of the principles of the republican party. No preferment ever biased his judgment. He espoused a cause, because he thought it was right.
He was married September 12, 1848 to Clara Armeda Davison, daughter of Artemas Davison (who was accidentally killed by his son-in-law while hunting in Henderson Grove, November 17, 1842) . To them were born five children: Frank Smith, born February 24, 1850, died July 8, 1850; Edward Loyal, born January 4, 1855, artist in New York City; Kate Elnora, born April 28, 1859, married to Edward Russell Grant of Cromwell, Iowa; Carrie Luella, born June 12, 1862, died April 2, 1866; Charles, born January 26, 1866, died September 26, 1866. Edward Loyal was married November 2, 1890, to Flora Stark, in London, England.
John Huston Finley
John Huston Finley was born at Grand Ridge, LaSalle County, Illinois, October 19, 1863. He is the son of James Gibson and Lydia Maynard (McCombs) Finley, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. His father, when a young man, came West and purchased a tract of land, then an unbroken prairie, for a farm. He then returned to Pennsylvania and brought his family to his new home in LaSalle County. He was a man of intelligence and influence and was prominent in the community in which he lived. In church affairs, he took a great interest, and for the common weal, he labored faithfully. The mother of John H. was a remarkable woman. In her domestic relations and in her social functions, she never failed to do her duty.
The history of the ancestry of the Finley family is brief. They are of Scotch-Irish descent. By persecutions, they were driven out of Scotland at an early day and settled in Ireland. They emigrated to this country about the year 1750. A member of one of the branches of the family became President of Princeton College. Another was the first minister to cross the Allegheny Mountains, settling in Western Pennsylvania. From this latter branch descended Dr. John H. Finley.
Dr. Finley acquired the rudiments of his education in the district school of his native town. He received also private instruction from the teacher and from the village minister. He attended the High School at Ottawa for fourteen months and graduated in 1881. He then engaged in teaching for the Winter of 1881-2 and worked on the farm the following Summer. In the Fall of 1882 he matriculated in Knox College, remaining there six months. He then worked on the farm and taught school for the following Winter. In the Spring of 1884, he returned to Knox College and graduated with high honors in 1887. In the Autumn of this year, he entered Johns Hopkins University and took a post-graduate course, remaining until February, 1889.
Since leaving college, Dr. Finley has had a most remarkable career. Places of honor and preferment have been open to him without his seeking. After leaving college, he was a compositor, for a short time, in the printing office of Colville Brothers, Galesburg, Illinois. In 1892 he was unanimously elected President of Knox College, his Alma Mater, and her increased patronage under his administration is a reliable witness of his success. In a large measure he was the life and spirit of the college during his Presidency. His work was not in the class-room, but in the field, lecturing, raising money, and securing students. He had the confidence of all, and whatever the undertaking, his hands were upheld by pupil, teacher, and the general public. Knox College owes him a debt of gratitude for enlarging her reputation among sister colleges. His own reputation spread likewise, and during his term of service here, he was offered several important positions in other colleges. He resigned the presidency of the college in 1899, and is now engaged in editorial work with McClure and the Harpers, New York City.
As a scholar, Dr. Finley stands in the front rank. He has been a thorough student of the best masters in literature, and is well versed in the writings of to-day. As a man, he is kind, gentle, and affable, and exhibits marks of sincerity in every word and act. He is a stranger to the finical graces of the schools, the studied ornament of speech, and the hollow verbiage of the charlatan. His marked characteristics are force and decision of character, accompanied with prudence and discretion. His manner is commanding, yet urbane; his actions are politic, yet frank; and his opinions are reserved, yet free. He is a warm supporter of education, religion, and good morals. His sympathies are inspiring; his charities, free from ostentation; and his friendship lasting. His social qualities, honest heart, and benevolent disposition give him a power that few men of his age possess. His life has been upright; his dealings just, and he has ever been regarded as a most worthy citizen.
In his religious connection Dr. Finley is a Presbyterian. In political faith, he is a republican. He was married June 23, 1892 to Martha Fow Boyden, daughter of Hon. A. W. Boyden, a banker at Sheffield, Illinois. Mr. Boyden has been a member of the Legislature and was one of the one hundred and three that elected John A. Logan to the United States Senate.
Dr. and Mrs. Finley are the parents of two children: Ellen Boyden, born March 10, 1894; and Margaret Boyden, born April 1897.
Francis A. Freer, A.M.
Francis A. Freer, A. M., son of Abram and Mary (McKimens) Freer, was born in Butler, Pennsylvania, April 6, 1843.
His parents moved to Pittsburg in 1849, and thence to Ellisville, Illinois, in 1857, where they lived until their decease. Their school advantages were very limited, but they made good use of the opportunities given. The father possessed an iron will and was not easily turned aside. In many of the common branches, he became a good scholar, especially in history and mathematics. Both were devout Christians.
His paternal ancestors were “French Huguenots”; his maternal, “Scotch-Irish Covenanters”. Both came to this country before the Revolution. What part they took in that great struggle for human freedom is not known.
Mr. Freer’s efforts to obtain an education were similar to the efforts of many others. In winter, he attended the public schools, while in summer; he devoted his time to learning the carpenter’s trade. This was his life until he was eighteen years old. In the Spring of 1867, he entered Hedding College at Abingdon, Illinois, and graduated in 1871 with the honor of valedictorian of his class. A large portion of his school expenses was defrayed by himself. The ripening harvest and the timbered forests offered plenty of work for his hands. The cradling of grain or the hewing of timber was a work with which he was familiar.
Mr. Freer is fond of natural scenery. His childhood was spent in school, and when school duties were over, in searching the fields and woods for flowers. No precipice was too high or dangerous to prevent his scaling it for a rare specimen. He was fond of all kinds of sports. He says of himself that his “tastes were always expensive; means always limited”.
After leaving college, he was principal of the Wataga schools for a time, and then for three years taught in the Henderson schools. During that time he read law with Hon. C.H. Nelson, but was never admitted to the Bar. One of the most important changes of his life was the giving up of the profession of teaching, which had been successfully followed until 1879. The confinement of the school-room was undermining his health. He then engaged for a time in the agricultural implement business, and later in the school book business, as the general agent of Sheldon and Company for the State of Illinois.
In 1875, he moved from Wataga to Henderson, and in 1879 to Galesburg, where has been his home ever since.
In 1861 he went to Peoria to enlist in the Forty-seventh Illinois Infantry, but failed to pass on account of his health. In 1862 he enlisted in the Seventieth Illinois Infantry, three months troops, serving about five months on guard duty. Again on account of his health, he was rejected from the three years service, but in the Spring of 1864, he enlisted in the One Hundred and Thirty-seventh Illinois Infantry, and was in a hard fight with Forest near Memphis, August 22, 1864. His regiment lost in killed and wounded 170 men.
The offices that Mr. Freer has held are not numerous, but worthy of mention. Both at Wataga and Henderson, he was elected Village Trustee on the temperance ticket, the issue being license or no license—elected Justice of the Peace in Henderson Township on the republican ticket in 1877, resigning the office in 1879—is a member of the James T. Shields Post. No. 45, Department of Illinois, G.A.R.—was elected commander of the same in 1890—was appointed Postmaster of Galesburg by President Harrison; again appointed by President McKinley, which office he now holds. He was elected Sergeant at Arms of the 34th General Assembly of Illinois in 1885. He is also a member of the Council of Administration, Department of Illinois G.A.R., having been elected in May 1899.
Mr. Freer has taken an active part in every public enterprise for the up-building of Galesburg during the past twenty years.
He has been connected with the following Societies: The Good Templars, Sons of Temperance, Temple of Honor, A.O.U.W., Masons and Odd Fellows, and the G.A.R. and U.V.U.
In religious faith, Mr. Freer affiliates with the Presbyterians, although he is not a member of any church.
In political faith, he is an uncompromising republican. In every campaign, by his eloquent speech, hard work and contributions, he has done much for the success of republican principles.
He was united in marriage December, 1871 to Jennie E. Christy, who was educated at Hedding College. To them were born five children, Elizabeth Irene, Howard Abram, Charles Francis, Mary Alda, and Morton Christy. Elizabeth is a graduate of Knox College, Alda is a student in Knox Conservatory of Music, Morton is a student at Lombard University, and Howard and Charles are engaged in business. Morton served in Company C, Sixth Illinois Volunteer Infantry during the Spanish-American War, receiving special mention in his honorable discharge.
Thomas Gold Frost
Thomas Gold Frost was an exceptional man. Possessed of strong native powers and imbued with a high moral purpose and a sense of duty and right, he wrote his name high on the roll of fame among the great and good of earth. He was born in Whitesboro, Oneida County, New York, May 4, 1821.
John Frost, the father of Thomas G. was a prominent Presbyterian clergyman. He was a superior scholar and a graduate of Middlebury College, Vermont. It is said that at his examination, he recited the Latin grammar entire. He was pastor of a church in Whitesboro for nearly twenty years, and was “an earnest advocate of temperance reform and a wise and prudent actor in the anti-slavery agitation of his day”. He was afterwards called to take charge of a Presbyterian church in Elmira, New York, and it was at an abolitionist meeting here, that a mob gathered and hurried missiles of various kinds at the speakers and others. Mr. Frost, with his friends, escaped unharmed. He was a particular friend of the Rev. George W. Gale, for whom Galesburg was named, and had many interviews with him in relation to Knox College and the colony enterprise. He furthered the project in every way possible, and even purchased land in Galesburg as an aid in carrying out the plan.
Thomas G. Frost’s mother was Harriet Lavinia Gold, daughter of Hon. Thomas Ruggles Gold, a native of Connecticut and a brilliant lawyer. At an early day he removed to Whitesboro. He was chosen State Senator for two terms, and for two terms represented his district in Congress. The daughter partook of the brilliancy of intellect and keenness of wit of her father, and by her dignity of carriage, pleasing manners, and beauty of person, she became a reigning belle in Washington during her father’s temporary residence there.
Such was the parentage of Thomas G. Frost, and such were the sterling qualities that flowed down the stream of descent to the son. The spirit of the boy did not suffer these qualities to lie dormant. They were burnished and brightened by the instruction at the paternal fireside, by the lessons learned in the common schools, and by the lectures in college. It was in the public schools of his native town and in Elmira, New York, that he received his elementary education. Not satisfied with a little learning, and being thoroughly prepared, he matriculated in Hamilton College, Clinton, New York, and graduated in 1843, with the highest honors. One of his professors said of him, that he, “has the finest legal mind I have met with in my years of instruction of young men”.
Soon after graduation, he read law in the office of Stryker and Comstock, at Rome, New York, and was admitted to the Bar in 1846. Immediately, he began to practice there, continuing for twelve years. He then removed to Galesburg, Illinois, where he practiced fifteen years. His next move was to Chicago, where he practiced ten years. In every place where he practiced, whether at Rome, Galesburg, or Chicago, he won distinction and fame.
As a lawyer, he was a model. No one ever dared to criticize his methods or his speech. For assiduity and untiring energy in his labors, he had no superior. He had quick perceptions, a sound judgment, and a useful fund of intelligence, which enabled him to see readily the scope and bearings of every case. Business of great importance was entrusted to him on account of his reliability and faithfulness. His briefs were without flaws, and in conciseness, were models. His speeches at court were never harangues, but they were full of candor and facts. His oratory was the eloquence of truth, justice and right. A judge once said of him: “No man was better able to instruct the Court at this Bar than he.”
As a man and citizen, he stood before the world unsullied. His private character was as pure as his public career. He was kind in spirit, loving his family relations, and sympathetic towards all. Malice was a stranger to his heart, envy was not cherished, and his broad catholic feelings threw a mantle of charity over the foibles and short-comings of his fellow beings. His soul-cheering words dispelled the dark clouds of despair and his enlivening spirit was a sunray of hope. He was a man of sterling qualities, of lofty aims, a devout Christian, and walked and lived on a high plane of moral rectitude.
Mr. Frost was not an office seeker. At President Grant’s second nomination, he was chosen one of the Presidential electors. He took an active part in the removal of the county seat from Knoxville to Galesburg. Early he was a champion in the temperance cause, and a member of temperance organizations in the East and West. For some time, he was President of the Knox County Bible Society. He was an elder in the Presbyterian Church at Galesburg for twelve years and in Evanston eight years. While in Hamilton College, he was a member of the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity. He united with the Presbyterian Church when only eleven years of age.
October 7, 1858, the time of the famous “Lincoln and Douglas” debate at Galesburg, he made the address of welcome to Abraham Lincoln. He assisted Dr. Noyes, of Evanston, Illinois, in his conduct of the memorable case of the Chicago Presbytery vs. Professor David Swing, who was cleared of the charge of heresy.
Politically, he was an abolitionist, having espoused the cause of the oppressed colored man in early life. He cast his first vote for the abolition ticket. He was delegate to the Free-Soil Convention at Buffalo, when that party was organized. Afterwards, he voted the republican ticket.
Mr. Frost was married November 18, 1847 at Rome, New York, to Elizabeth Anna Bancroft, daughter of Judge Edward Bancroft, of Martinsbury, New York, one of the first settlers of that section. He removed from Westfield, Massachusetts, early in the nineteenth century. He was a strong man intellectually, enterprising and of high moral worth.
Mr. and Mrs. Frost were the parents of five children: John Edward, who lives in Topeka, Kansas, and who, for many years, has been connected with the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad, as Land Commissioner; Louisa; Elizabeth Bancroft, living in Galesburg; Thomas Gold Frost, lawyer in New York; and a daughter dying in infancy.
Mr. Frost died near Springer, New Mexico, December 22, 1880 at the age of sixty-nine.
George W. Gale, D.D.
Rev. George Washington Gale, clergyman, educator and philanthropist, was born in Stanford, Duchess County, New York, on December 3, 1789.
His grandparent's, Joseph and Rebecca (Closson) Gale, were emigrants from Yorkshire, England and settled at Stamford, Connecticut. They were the parents of six sons and one daughter. Of these, John, the eldest, married Sarah, a sister of General Waterbury of Stamford, Connecticut, and died at sea. His daughter, Sarah, married Hezekiah Olmstead, and was the mother of Sally, wife of Silvanus Ferris. Another son, Josiah, was the father of the eminent founder of Galesburg. He was the husband of Rachel Mead, whose father, Timothy, moved from Connecticut to Dutchess County, New York, and from there to Meads’ Mills, Vermont, where, with his brothers, he took up his residence before the Revolution. His wife was a cousin of Mary Mead, the mother of Silvanus Ferris. Josiah Gale was a man of muscular frame and remarkable strength, while his son, George W., was slightly built, although of graceful carriage and commanding presence. He served during the French and Indian War in the army in northern New York, participating in the battle of Ticonderoga, Oswego and Fort Stanwix. In the Revolutionary struggle, he was with the militia at the battle of White Plains, but his principal service was as the head of a vigilance committee to look after the Tories, who, in that region, were numerous and troublesome. He was of a generous disposition, and became one of the Galesburg colonists, being elected a Justice of the Peace in the new settlement.
George W. Gale was left an orphan when only eight years old, but was affectionately cared for by his sisters, of whom he had eight, married to substantial farmers in the neighborhood of their home. As he grew older, however, he became conscious that the life of a farmer’s boy would not satisfy his aspirations, and he determined to acquire a higher education. As soon as qualified, he alternated his attendance at school with the duties of the pedagogue, and by these means, with close application to study at home; he prepared himself for entering the Sophomore class at Union College. For a time, he had a tutor, John Frost of Middlebury, Vermont, who afterwards became pastor of the Presbyterian Church at Whitesboro, New York, and was his counselor and coadjutor in all his enterprises in after life.
After graduating from Union, Mr. Gale entered Princeton Theological Seminary, but so impaired his health by over-study that he was compelled to leave the institution before the completion of his course. He was, however, licensed to preach by the Hudson (New York) Presbytery, in 1816. For a few years he preached to small, newly formed congregations in Dutchess and Putnam counties, being also employed as a missionary among the new settlements in Jefferson and Oswego counties, and for a time supplying a pulpit in Green County. His health partially restored, he returned to Princeton and completed his course in 1819. From the many calls to a pastorate which he received, he accepted one from the church at Adams, Jefferson County, New York; and, riding thither from Princeton on horseback, he entered upon a new field of duty. Within five years his health again failed him, and, resigning his charge, he went South, to seek the benefit to be obtained through a change of climate. A winter in Virginia proved so beneficial that he returned North; yet did not dare to resume his ministerial duties. Accordingly he secured a residence, with a small farm attached, in the pretty village of Western, Oneida County, New York.
At that time an educated ministry seemed to be a vital need of the Presbyterian Church, a fact which few men within that communion felt more keenly than did Mr. Gale. To his trained and reflective mind, the problem presented itself, how to enlist young men of piety and talent, and afford them proper training? His own experience had shown him students discouraged for want of means, abandoning their studies to earn money which was indispensable for their prosecution, and undermining their health by an intense effort to make up the time thus lost. Most of them were accustomed to the outdoor life of a farm, with physical exercise, and it occurred to him that if each student were given, each day, a sufficient amount of such work to relieve the mental strain inseparable from hard study, and at the same time to aid in defraying the expense necessary to his education, better results might be obtained. He tried an experiment. He took into his family a half dozen young men, to whom he furnished books and gave instruction in consideration of three hour’s daily work upon his farm. Out of this project was developed the Oneida Institute, at Whitesboro, New York, which was founded mainly through his efforts. He personally solicited the funds necessary for the purchase of a farm and the erection of buildings. Instructors of ability and repute were secured, dormitories and shops built, a college curriculum adopted, and the project fairly launched. Three hours’ daily labor on the farm paid for room rent and board; work in the shops was paid what it might be worth. The Institute was soon filled with students, and the pervading atmosphere was intensely religious, while strong temperance and anti-slavery sentiments were developed. From 1827 to 1834, Mr. Gale remained at its head, but in the latter year he retired from the management to enter upon the formation of the Galesburg Colony and the founding of Knox College. For a detailed account of his efforts in this direction, and the success with which they were crowned, the reader is referred to the articles entitled Galesburg and Knox College.
He first visited the site of the city in his honor in 1836, when he devoted considerable time to looking into the affairs of the colony and making ready a home for his family, whom he brought out later, returning to Whitesboro to accompany them. Their journey to their new home occupied six weeks, and was accomplished by canal to Buffalo, by lake to Detroit, and by wagon to the cabin in which they were to reside. Finding this filled with sufferers from an unfortunate canal boat expedition (see “A Canal Boat Journey), he found quarters for his wife and seven children in the already crowded cabins of helpful, sympathetic neighbors, and put up another cabin for the winter from green logs. In the spring he built another and better one at what is now the corner of Seminary and Grove streets, and four years later erected a house, yet standing, at the corner of North and Cherry streets.
From its founding until his death, which occurred September 13, 1861, Mr. Gale was prominent in the management of Knox College, serving as trustee all the time, and as a Professor from 1841 until 1856. He was also active in the affairs of the church, and for several years filled the pulpit of the First Presbyterian, long the only church in Galesburg, besides devoting much time to the establishment of other churches, in the surrounding country. In 1857, he was smitten with a paralytic stroke, but was gradually regaining his strength until, within six months before his death, he began to weaken. Gangrene finally set in, causing his death within a few days after its appearance.
The following tribute to his memory was paid by Rev. Dr. Boardman, of Philadelphia, an eminent Presbyterian divine, who knew him well: “His intellect was strong, clear, acute, penetrating, active, well furnished and well disciplined. His judgment of men and things was sound, his hopefulness large, his faith confiding, his will resolute, his fortitude unshrinking, and his courage unfaltering. His piety was a governing principle, a part of his very being, and controlling his plans, his labors, his comforts and his purse. His works praise him, and his memory will long be fresh and fragrant in the church.”
Mr. Gale was three times married. His first wife was Harriet Selden, a daughter of Hon. Charles Selden and Abigail Jones, his wife, to whom he was united at Troy, New York in 1820. She was delicately reared, and a young girl at the time of her marriage. The income from her small fortune enabled him to prosecute his plans for doing good, and she cheerfully followed his fortunes; if not with enthusiasm, at least without complaint. In 1841, a year after her death, he married Mrs. Esther Coon, a daughter of Daniel Williams, at Galesburg; and after her demise he was joined—in 1844—to Lucy Merriam, at New Haven, Connecticut. He was the father of seven sons and three daughters: William Selden, born in 1822, and now living at Galesburg; Harriet Yonvet, born in 1823; George, born in 1826, and died in 1872; Josiah, born in 1827, and died in 1863; Mary Elizabeth born in 1829, and now the widow of Rev. Edwin L. Hurd, D.D.; Margaret, born in 1831, who became the wife of Professor Henry E. Hitchcock, of Knox College and the Nebraska State University; Charles Selden, born in 1835, and died in 1836; Joseph Dudley, the first male white child born within the present limits of Galesburg, born in 1837 and died in 1856; Roger and Henry Williams, both of whom died the year of their birth, the former in 1840 and the latter in 1842.
William Selden Gale
is a fine type of the best American citizen. A New Yorker by birth, a New Englander in characteristics, he brought to the West in early life the ideas so peculiar to that part our country, that all government, to be worthy of the support and loyalty of the people, must rest upon a pure and efficient administration of local affairs. As society at large rests upon the family, so the State and Nation must rest upon the township unit. Honesty, efficiency, and economy in the conduct of local interests will as surely reappear in the administration of the State and Nation as will morality and all the tender sympathies of the human brotherhood be found in a state of society, where the sacredness of family ties and obligations are observed with the sincerity of a religious conviction.
All through Mr. Gale's life, prominent and above all other considerations, this principle has been manifested; and when called to look after interests extending beyond the purely local, and touching the State at large, the influence which his measures might have upon local affairs were still uppermost in his mind. If Mr. Gale has had ambition to work in larger fields and doubles he has, for he has been eminently fitted for such service, such ambitions have always been subordinated, not only to a feeling of obligation to perform the local duties that are ever pressing upon a competent man in any community, but also to a feeling of distaste to an active political life; for not one of the many positions of trust and honor which Mr. Gale has held was he ever an active candidate, until made so by his friends. In all his relationships to his fellow citizens, his bearing has been cordial, his criticisms not harsh, but based upon a sound judgment, and therefore, never used to feed a vindictive spirit.
He stands then a man to whom every young person may look as a specimen of a typical, high-minded citizen.
He was born February 15th, 1822, at Adams, Jefferson County, New York, where his father, the Reverend George Washington Gale, afterwards of Galesburg, Illinois, was then Presbyterian pastor.
His mother, daughter of Hon. Charles Selden, was born at Lansingburg, New York, in 1800, and was married to the Rev. Mr. Gale at Troy, New York, in 1820.
Charles Selden was born at Lyme, Connecticut. He graduated from Yale in 1777, in the presence of General Washington, from whom he received, with others in his class, a commission on graduation day, and entered the army. He was made Captain and served until a year after the War. He became a merchant, was State Senator, and a member of the State Board of Regents of the University.
Col. Samuel Selden, father of Charles, commanded a Connecticut regiment, was in New York at the time of the battle of Long Island and was left behind sick when the Americans evacuated and the English entered the city. He died a prisoner. Thomas Selden and Richard Ely, ancestors of Charles Selden, came to Lyme, Connecticut, about 1836, where some of their descendants still reside.
Mr. Gales was married in 1845 to Caroline Eliza Ferris, daughter of Silvanus Western Ferris, and granddaughter of Silvanus Ferris, who was so prominent in the formation of Galesburg colony.
There were eight children born to Mr. and Mrs. Gale; William Selden, George Washington, Charles Selden, Caroline, Harriet, Joseph Dudley, Josiah, and John. Williams S., George W, and Harriet are now living. Josiah died in 1889 and was at that time Clerk of the Circuit County of this county. The other three sons died young. Though not a college graduate, Mr. Gales' education has been a liberal one. He was fourteen years old when he left New York for Illinois. At that time he was prepared for college, but was considered too young to enter. A plan for home study was begun with the expectation of entering college later, but in an advanced class. Systematic study, however, was gradually dropped on account of some business cares and the desire for an active life incident to a new and hopeful country. Having a phenomenal memory, and grateful powers of analysis and application, the habit of reading history, political economy, and other subjects of like practical interest to the citizen, made him one of the most liberally educated men of this community.
Tempting opportunities for useful and profitable vocations presented themselves. That of merchant and general trader at first seemed most attractive. His eighteenth and nineteenth years were years of education in that capacity, while in the employ of Colonel Herman Knox and James Knox, brothers in business at Knoxville, and of Ralph H. Hulburt, of Mt. Sterling. He became interested in real estate and other property, however, which turned his attention to the law. He was admitted to the Bar in 1846. Without the usual waiting for practice, so universal with young attorneys, his business and certain duties of citizenship absorbed all his time. His knowledge of the law was of great service to him in what was afterwards his life work.
Another preparatory experiment was the management of "the Newsletter," a paper published with the assistance of Dr. James Bunce and George C. Lanphere. It may be said that here Mr. Gale began his efforts to make Galesburg a railroad center.
Railways at that time were thought to be principally useful for overland transportation, connecting lake with lake and river with river, the waterway being still considered means of traffic. The Peoria and Oquawka, the Rock Island and Peoria, the Illinois Central, the Northern Cross (Galesburg to Quincy), the Michigan Central, and Michigan Southern roads were all figuring for Illinois business. Knoxville and Monmouth both seemed to lead Galesburg in the chances of railroad connections; Galesburg, was therefore, greatly discouraged. It came to the knowledge of Mr. Gale that the managers of the Michigan Southern road were about to undertake the extension of the Rock Island and the Peoria to Chicago. It was supposed that this line would come within thirty miles of Galesburg. Mr. Gale at once called attention to these facts in an editorial. A great stir was made, committees were appointed to confer with Chicago and Eastern parties, and everything looked favorable for the construction of a branch to connect with this road. Galesburg people obtained a charter for this branch, which was to be known as the Central Military Tract Railroad. The Rock Island and the Peoria people agreed to take up its construction, but were, as it proved, a little too slow. The Michigan Central Railroad Company was about to extend the Chicago and Aurora line to connect with the Illinois Central at Mendota. Mr. Gale saw the advantage of this line at once, and the negotiations begun with the same parties to take up the Central Military Tract road were entirely successful. A direct line to Chicago, through Mendota and Aurora, was thus secured, and, as predicted by Mr. Gale, the Peoria and Oquawka and the Northern Cross came to Galesburg to make their Chicago connections. These roads now constitute an important portion of the splendid "Burlington" system. A large part of Mr. Gale's time was freely given to this enterprise, the wisdom of which is fully demonstrated by the great, intelligent, and prosperous communities that have grown up along its lines. With the completion of this railroad, "The Newsletter" was transferred to other parties, to the great relief, though substantial pecuniary loss, of the editor.
The public offices held by Mr. Gale comprise almost everything of local character, as well as certain positions of more general jurisdiction. From 1849 to 1853 he was Postmaster of Galesburg; 1853 to 1895, with the exception of five years, Supervisor of Knox County; 1871 to 1882, and 1891 to 1895, Alderman of the City of Galesburg; 1861 to the present time, Trustee of Knox College; Member of the State Constitutional Convention, 1862; Member of the State Legislature, 1869; Member of the State Revenue Commission, 1885 and 1886; Trustee of the Illinois Western Hospital for the Insane, 1895 to 1897; Presidential Elector, 1872. In 1853 he was nominated for County Judge during his absence from home. He did not desire the office, made no canvass, and was defeated.
He was a member of the whig party, and attended, as a delegate, most of its conventions until its dissolution, and then joined the republican party. He has been in the State and National Conventions, and supported the candidates, though sometimes doubting, and even regretting, the policy.
Mr. Gale is entitled to a brief consideration of his more important public work, as it will serve to bring out more clearly his natural mental tendencies and power of analysis of public questions.
The Constitutional Convention of 1862 consisted of as many delegates as there were members of the Legislature, and they were elected from the same districts. No reapportionment had been made for twenty years. Representation was, therefore, very unjust to the republicans in the northern portion of the State, which had in the meantime become very populous. Union conventions to nominate delegates were held in many counties, Knox among them and the result was only thirteen republican members in the convention. It contained many able men, and among the democrats were many strong Southern sympathizers. What, then, should be the attitude of Illinois in case the Union should be broken up, was a serious question to many, and the authority of the convention to declare it was urged. The influence of Douglas and Logan, together with Union victories, finally put discussions of this character aside, and the convention settled down to more legitimate work. Mr. Gale, though one of the very small minority, secured the adoption of a plan, giving county Boards, under certain conditions, power to submit to a vote of the people questions as to removal of county seats, the object being to take such questions out of politics. Knox county was then divided into factions on this subject, and at a decided disadvantage in every district and State convention. The proposition was dropped on final revision, through fear that it might cost the constitution votes in some localities. In the work of apportionment, Gale was successful, having his own way as to his own locality. He had been placed on the judicial and congressional apportionment committees, and the work of congressional apportionment was mainly done by Mr. Gale, and Lewis W. Ross, of Fulton County. The constitution failed before the people, owing to prejudice created by the unfortunate character of its opening provisions.
In the Revenue Commission of 1885-6, Mr. Gale again displayed his knowledge of the details in every department of local administration. His appointment was made at the earnest solicitation of every member of the Knox County Board of Supervisors, the county officers, and the City Council of Galesburg, besides others equally prominent in matters of the public welfare -- all of whom knew of his thorough fitness for such an important work. The commission was composed of twelve members, six from each political party. The Hon. Milton Hay, one of the most eminent attorneys of the State was chairman. The assessment of property in the State had developed into a contest between the assessors, to see which could so assess as to obtain the most relief for his township or county, in the payment of State taxes. The Commission saw that this contest was unavoidable, unless the State taxes were assessed and collected in an entirely different manner from all local taxes. The commission plan, therefore, struck at the root of the difficulty. It was opposed by interests directly affected by the proposed changes, and so the work came to naught. No member of the Commission left plainer marks than Mr. Gale. The work was mostly done in committee of the whole when he was chairman.
In 1868, the people of Galesburg decided, if possible, to secure the passage of a bill, submitting to a vote, the removal of the county seat from Knoxville to Galesburg. They put forward Mr. Gale as their candidate for the Legislature and he received the nomination. The democrats nominated Alfred M. Craig. The county seat question figured largely in the issue, but Mr. Gale was elected. Mr. Gale was made chairman of the committee on penitentiaries and was also placed on the railroad committee. The county seat bill was presented and passed after a hard struggle. This was the last session of the Legislature permitting special legislation. Every member was, in consequence, very active. Mr. Gale had about thirty bills and succeeded in getting them all passed. Mr. Gales' interest in local affairs began when as a boy, he listened to the plans of the founders of Galesburg before they left New York, to find the spot whereon was to be built the college and around which the village and future beautiful city was to grow.
The plan worked out by the Rev George Washington Gale, and in which Mr. Selden was so much interested, has been substantially followed. The first city charter of Galesburg was drafted by Mr. Gale. George C. Lanphere and Oliver S. Pitcher. Mr. Gale declined a place in the council at that time, and afterwards until 1871, when he was elected without opposition. He remained in the council until 1882, and had an opposing candidate but once during that time. He was chairman of the finance committee during his entire service as Alderman. In the first period of his service he refunded the city debt on terms especially advantageous to the taxpayers, and which were thought impracticable by local bankers. He negotiated the purchase of the City Park, and the year after the close of his second period of service, from 1891 to 1895, he was chairman of the committee to revise the city ordinances.
Township organization was adopted in Knox County in 1853. The first ten years subsequent to this Mr. Gale was elected Supervisor without opposition. The first five years he was the sole representative from Galesburg; then two representatives were allowed. At the beginning there were still the remnants of an early prejudice against Galesburg, as a Yankee, Presbyterian, Abolitionist settlement. The town was increasing rapidly, and large bills were necessarily presented to the county for the support of the Galesburg poor, the poor being entirely a county charge at that time. Moreover, the rapid growth of Galesburg was exciting the suspicions of the people that sooner or later a successful effort would be made to remove the county seat from Knoxville to Galesburg. This feeling was shared by a majority of the County board. Mr. Gale exerted more influence in the Board than any other man, and many of the representatives were accused by their constituents of allowing themselves to be hoodwinked by him. The simple fact, however, was, that coupled with his ability were a thorough knowledge of the situation and a spirit of perfect fairness and justice, and to be associated with him in the transaction of the county business, enabled all to see the justness of his propositions and the sincerity of his purpose. In 1863, he was not re-elected. In 1865, his services were again demanded, and he was returned with H. R. Sanderson as an able associate. Galesburg was soon restored to her proper degree of influence. From this time until 1873, when the question of locating the county seat at Galesburg was finally settled, Mr. Gale had the care of many important measures. He secured an order of the county Board dividing the town, drawing the division line in such a way that it made two towns, each entitled to two supervisors, thus increasing the representation of Galesburg by two members. Later he drew a bill, which passed the Legislature, dividing the City of Galesburg from the township, allowing the city representation in proportion to the population. This gave Galesburg six representatives in the county Board. This bill possessed one entirely new feature. It gave the city a township, as well as city, government. He devised the present mode of caring for the poor, dividing the responsibility between township and county, which has been so satisfactory.
The elegant three-story court house, completed in January, 1887, was mainly planned by Mr. Gale, the architect taking the floor plan entire as submitted by him. He was chairman of the building committee during the entire time of the court house construction. His part in determining the plan for the jail and letting the contracts for construction, was practically the same. The same may be said of the construction of the first insane annex to the Alms House, although he did not remain in the Board until the building was completed.
Limited space prevents the enumeration of all that Mr. Gale has done for this community; to repeat here what his opponents have said in his praise would appear fulsome in the extreme. One thing, however, his friends have seriously regretted, that he ever allowed himself to be drawn from the profession of the law; for they feel that when the conclusion was reached, that his work lay along other lines, this county lost its opportunity of furnishing to the State one of its foremost attorneys. Mr. Gales is still in active life, attending to his large farming interests in Knox and Warren Counties. A. J. Perry. [tr. by K.T.]
George Candee Gale
George Candee Gale was born at Galesburg, Illinois, July 12, 1873. His father, George Washington Gale, a son of William Selden Gale, was also born at Galesburg, and his mother, Frances Candee, was born at La Fayette, Indiana. His father has always followed the occupation of farmer, and is a leading citizen in his community. His mother, like his paternal ancestors, was of Presbyterian stock and was the daughter of an Old School Presbyterian minister. Young Gale, therefore, very naturally, entered the Presbyterian Church. The mental qualities and tendencies which children inherit are quite likely to control them in the selection of the organized groups of thought to which they attach themselves; and so it often happens that an examination of a person's associates, individual and collective, will disclose traits of character in such person which at first would not otherwise be discerned. This rule applied to George C. Gale would indicate that, Presbyterian like, he is a man who would insist upon a great deal of individual liberty in matters of opinion; that he would claim his right to feed in every corner of the civil and religious pastures, but that he cheerfully submits to be restrained by the fence erected on established lines. This somewhat uncouth illustration represents to the author of this sketch the character of Mr. Gale. From a long line of ancestors he has drawn these traits, and in whatever enterprise he may engage; wherever his services may be enlisted, we may expect to find his own personality, his own conscience, and not an imitation of anybody.
Mr. Gale has had a liberal education, judged from almost any standpoint. He attended the Galesburg public schools including one year in the High School. Two years in Knox Academy admitted him to Knox College, from which he graduated, after four years' study, with first honors, receiving the degree of Bachelor of Arts in 1893. He received the degree of Master of Arts from the same institution in 1895 and delivered the Master's Oration in 1896.
Naturally Mr. Gale turned to the study of law. No other profession offers such opportunities for the full exercise of his abilities and natural traits of character. He studied one year in the office of Messrs. Williams, Lawrence and Welsh; one year in the University of Wisconsin, and one year in the New York Law School. He won the first prize, $150.00, upon the thesis "Ultra Vires," in a contest open to all graduating members of the school, and was given the degree of Bachelor of Laws in 1896. He was admitted to the Bar of Wisconsin in May, 1895, and Illinois in 1896.
Mr. Gales' boyhood was spent on the farm. We can almost imagine, however, that his fondness for reading and study, and an irrepressible desire to take part in the somewhat more stirring phases of life, interfered somewhat with his usefulness as a farm boy.
He is at present engaged in the practice of law, a profession with which he is deeply in love, and is associated with Mr. Wilfred Arnold. If ability, honesty, and hard study combined will county for anything in the race for success, we may confidently expect to see some very important cases entrusted to his management before he is very old. In national politics he is a republican; in city affairs he is an independent. He has always resided in Galesburg except when attending law school. A more extended genealogy of Mr. Gale may be seen by consulting the sketch of his grandfather, William Selden Gale, in this volume. A.J. Perry [Tr by K.T.]
is a native of Germany, and was born in Zornheim, June 16, 1852. His father was Peter Gardt, whose occupation was that of a wagon and carriage maker. His mother was Agnes Knusman. His grandfather participated in the early French wars. His paternal uncle has held the office of Burgomaster of Zornheim for thirty years.
Herny Gardt received a thorough common school education in Germany, where superior training of the mind is the rule, not the exception. He became well instructed in those branches which especially fitted him for the active business of life. In 1868, when only a youth of sixteen years, he came to Galesburg, where he has resided ever since. He first found employment with Charles Brechwald in the liquor business, where he remained for eleven years. He then formed a copartnership with Solomon Frolich and L. Nirdlinger in the same business, which firm still continues. In 1888, this company purchased the Union Hotel at Galesburg, making it by their excellent management one of the best hotels in the State. It has a fine reputation far and wide, and became a pleasant resort, especially for traveling men. In the Spring of 1899, they rented the hotel of George J. Mills. All this time they were engaged in the wholesale liquor business, and have made a financial success in all their transactions.
In 1890, they organized a joint stock company and built the Auditorium, which was put, and is still, under the management of Mr. Gardt.
Mr. Gardt has always shown himself as a public spirited man. The various industries and improvements of the city of his adoption he has always favored, and has given liberally of his means. He is kind in disposition, agreeable in manners, and has the ability to establish friendly relations towards his associates. He served, with credit, as Alderman, the citizens of his ward in 1884-5, being elected on the republican ticket. For a term of two years, he held the office of Park Commissioner. The two public enterprises to which he has given special attention are the founding of the Auditorium and the establishment of the Williams Race Track. He is a member of several secret societies, among which are the following: Masons, Odd Fellows, Knights of Pythias, Royal Arcanum, and the Shrine of Medinah (Chicago.)
He has traveled quite extensively in this country, visiting many States. In 1897, he made a tour of Europe, sojourning for a time in the land of his birth. In politics, he is an active republican, working always for his party's success.
Mr. Gardt was married May 18, 1876, to Barbara Glaeser. To these parents have been born three children. Two are deceased and one boy is living, Chauncey. [Tr. by K.T.]
Mary Ellen (Ferris) Gettemy
was born in Galesburg, IL, July 8, 1839. She is the daughter of William Mead and Mary (Crandall) Ferris, who were married Mar. 30, 1830, in Norway, Herkimer Co, N.Y., and resided there until they came to Galesburg with the colony in July 1837. Their journey was long and tedious. Their means of conveyance was the usual covered wagon with all paraphernalia that seemed needful to these settlers in a new country. Both the father and the mother had strongly marked characteristics. Their strong wills and their unyielding disposition to overcome difficulties fitted them especially for pioneer life. The first ten years they lived at Henderson Grove, where Mr. Ferris owned and superintended a mill. They moved to the old Ferris homestead in Galesburg in Aug. 1847, where the father lived and died, and the mother is still living at the advanced age of 89, the sole survivor of the colony that founded Galesburg.
Silvanus W. Ferris, Mrs. Gettemy’s grandfather, was one of a committee of four to select a site for Galesburg and Knox College. Here he removed with his family and lived the remainder of his days. He took an active interest in the prosperity and growth of the town, and in establishing Knox College, of which he was a trustee until his death.
Mrs. Gettemy’s childhood was passed at home under the surveillance of her parents. There was scarcely a book at her command, and the day of daily newspapers had not dawned in Galesburg. Fox’s Book of Martyrs was the only illustrated book which the home afforded, and the scenes there pictured were stamped indelibly upon her mind.
Her early advantages for education were the best the times afforded. She first attended a private school and afterwards entered the public schools. With this preparatory training she became a student at Knox Academy, and enjoyed the instruction of superior teachers. In Jan. 1854, she entered Knox College and graduated with distinction in 1857.
The first year after leaving college was spent in the study of music and French. In the spring of 1858 she taught the children of the neighborhood, and in April 1859 she went from home to teach in the schools of Henderson County. Afterwards she became a teacher in Knox Academy, and in the High Schools of Canton, Kewanee, and Freeport.
Sept. 21, 1865, she was married to Robert Hood Gettemy. They lived in Monmouth, IL, until their removal to Chicago, in May 1867, where Mr. Gettemy was engaged in the lumber business. In 1869 fire destroyed the accumulation of years, blackening his prospects for the future. His health becoming impaired, they returned to Monmouth in Nov. 1873. In April 1875, Mr. Gettemy returned to Chicago; but his physical condition gave no promise for permanent business pursuits, and Mrs. Gettemy again entered the schoolroom as a teacher, and took the principalship of the High School in Galesburg in place of Mrs. McCall, who was compelled to be absent on account of illness. In 1876 she was elected principal of Galesburg High School, resigning after nineteen years of earnest and successful labor to accept the position of assistant, which would bring less arduous duties and fewer responsibilities. To the cares of the schoolroom was added the care of an invalid husband. After many years of ill health, Mr. Gettemy was at last compelled to give up entirely the active labors of life. He came to Galesburg in 1886, where, for five years, he was confined to his home, and for ten months, to his bed. After great suffering, he died August 6, 1891.
Mr. and Mrs. Gettemy had but one child, a son, Charles Ferris Gettemy. He graduated at Knox College in 1890, and at Harvard University in 1891. He took the degree of Master of Arts in 1893. He is now engaged as a political writer on the Boston Advertiser.
In childhood Mrs. Gettemy united with the Baptist Church, retaining that membership until 1865, when, with her husband, she joined the United Presbyterian Church in Monmouth, IL. On removing to Chicago in 1867, they united with the Third Presbyterian Church of that city. In 1882 she united with the Old First Church in Galesburg, now the Central Congregational Church, of which she remains a member.
As a teacher Mrs. Gettemy has earned a praiseworthy reputation. She entered this field of work with good acquirements and a thorough appreciation of the task to be performed. Her manner is of that quiet kind that begets confidence in her pupils as well as in her associates. She is not forward in her opinions, but is ever ready to return an intelligent answer to her interrogator.
In the community, she is highly esteemed, and her Alma Mater showed its appreciation of her work as a faithful instructor by conferring upon her in 1897 the Degree of Master of Literature. Mrs. Gettemy still continues her work in the Galesburg High School (in 1899).
Jon Watson Grubb
was born near Barry, IL. Aug. 5, 1851. His father, Jon P. Grubb, was a Pennsylvania German. His mother, Harriet (Stevens) Grubb was born in New York, but was descended from the Stevens family of Massachusetts. In 1842 Jon P. Grubb and his brother-in-law established the Barry Woollen Mills and engaged in the manufacture of cloth. Some years after, Mr. Grubb added farming to his business, and Jon W., from the age of thirteen, was employed on the farm in summer, attending the district school in winter, till 1872, when he became a student in Lombard University. He left the University, and after three years spent in farm labor and in teaching, to procure the means for completing his college course, he returned to the University and graduated with a high standing in 1879. After teaching the following winter, he became secretary and treasurer of the Barry Woollen Mills Company, and held these positions for two years. In 1882 he was called to Lombard University to take the place of the Professor of Mathematics during a temporary absence, and since that time he has been connected with the University as a teacher. At first he was Adjunct Professor of Mathematics and Principal of the Preparatory Department, and more recently he has been Professor of Latin. He is a thorough and earnest teacher, and demands of students promptness and close application to duty.
It is sometimes said that a scholar who chooses the avocation of a teacher becomes unfitted for business. This has not been the case with Professor Grubb. He has been successful in such business enterprises as he had undertaken. He platted and put on the market the lots in J. W. Grubb’s Lombard University Addition to Galesburg, and making it for the interest of parties to buy lots and build houses; he profited by the enterprise, and caused an addition to be made to the population of the east part of the City of Galesburg.
The business which he has done in settling estates has been satisfactory.
He holds the office of Registrar of Lombard University. He served one term as alderman for his ward. He is a Universalist in his religious belief, and a democrat in politics.
He was married in 1885 to Mary J. Claycomb, who was for a considerable time a successful teacher in Lombard University and other schools. Mrs. Grubb is an efficient leader and earnest laborer in charitable enterprises and in work for her church, and her efforts in these directions are generously aided by her husband. They have no children, but they usually have three or four young persons in their family whom they assist in obtaining and education.
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