Lee County Biography


Orville Blackman, M. D.,a successful physician and surgeon of the Homeopathic school, has been engaged in the practice of the medical profession in Dixon since 1873. He was born in Hillsboro, 111., August 30, 1852, and traces his ancestry back to England. His great-grand-father, a native of that country, was a seafaring I man and lost his life at sea some years after James | Blackman, his son, had come to the United States. The latter was the grandfather of our subject. He was born in England, and after crossing the Atlan­tic, located in Canton, Mass. Later he established in Boston one of the first shops for making the old time clocks, such as is spoken of in Longfellow's poem, "TheOld Clock on the Stairs." He possessed remarkable mechanical genius, and in his business dealings was quite successful. At the request of his son John he came to Illinois and opened a cab­inet shop in Hillsboro, where he made his home until his death, at about the age of ninety years. His wife had passed away about three years prev­ious. She was a lady of superior intelligence and could hold her own in a debate or argument con-! cerning most any scriptural point, being well versed in theology. Both Mr. and Mrs. Blackman were members of the Church of England in early days but in after life united with the Unitarian Church.

The Doctor's father, George Blackman, was but a youth when he accompanied his parents to Amer­ican, and while yet a young man he came to Illi­nois, locating in Hillsboro, where he married Han­nah A. Paisley, who was born in Raleigh, N. C, and is of Scotch descent. She came to this State with her father, Joseph Paisley, who located in Hills­boro, there making his home until his death. Mr. Blackman was one of the early settlers of that lo­cality and was one of three men who established the old stage line from Centralia to Peoria. When the stages were driven out by the introduction of railroads he opened a wagon and carriage manu­factory in Hillsboro, which he carried on success­fully for many years. He also made one of the first corn-planters of the time and the machine at­tracted no little attention. After a useful and well-spent life he was called to his final rest in 1856. His wife died in the home where her hus­band had taken her as a bride. She was then sixty years of age. With the Presbyterian Church she held membership, and Mr. Blackman belonged to the Unitarian Church. They were highly respected people and well known throughout the community where they made their home.

Dr. Blackman was reared to manhood under the parental roof. After attending the common schools he was a student in Hillsboro Academy, one of the oldest institutions of learning in the State, and when his literary education was completed he en tered Hahnemann Medical College of Chicago, from which he was graduated in the Class of '73 Not long afterward he located in Dixon, where he has since successfully engaged in practice. His office is now located in Van Epps Block. From the beginning his practice has constantly increased and the liberal custom now attests the skill and ability of our subject. He is still a student of his profession and keeps abreast with every new dis­covery or theory'connected with his chosen life work.

In his native county the Doctor was united in marriage with Miss Lucretia S.(Sophia) Cress, who was born in Hillsboro, and was also educated in the academy of that city. She is a lady of intelligence whose friends are among the best citizens of Dixon, and with the Doctor she is a member of the Lutheran Church. He has held most of the church offices, was also Superintendent of the Sunday-school for several years and is chairman of the committee for the plans, grounds and buildings of the Rock River Lutheran Assembly, located at Dixon.

Socially, our subject is a member of the Odd Fellows fraternity, and since the organization of the Modern Woodmen has been examiner for that society. He is a member of the International As­sociation of Homeopathy, the American Institute of Homeopath}-, is Vice President of the Illinois Association of Homeopathy and lias been Secretary of the Rock River Institute of Homeopathy. Dr. Blackmail has a wide acquaintance among his pro­fessional brethren throughout the State and stands in the foremost rank.

Portraits and Biographical Lee County IL 1892


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