Lee County Biography


Ebenezer L. Clapp, is a highly respec­ted citizen of Lee Center, and an early pioneer of this county. He was born in Hampshire County, Mass, in 1819 and lived there until fifteen years of age.His father was proprietor of an hotel, running a stage and also carrying on farming. When our subject was fifteen years old, he went to New York City, being employed for two and one half years with James Hall & Co,whole­sale dry goods merchants. He then entered the employ of Eno & Phelps, in the same business, remaining with him for about two years.

About this time, Mr. Clapp had his attention directed to Mobile, Ala., to which place he went with the intention of going into business there, but not being satisfied with the outlook of things he changed his mind, and after remaining in that city for six months went to Selma, Ala., and entered the employ of Johnson & Dore, merchants, with whom he remained eighteen months. He then returned to the East and going to Hartford, Conn., engaged in business for some five years in the retail trade. At the expiration of this time he returned to New York and opened up business, dealing in carpets, boots and shoes, for some three years. He then sold out and bought a retail estab­lishment of John S. Quick which he carried on for some years, finally disposing-of it and forming a partnership with Mr. Nelson, of St. Louis. They were together in business for some years and then dissolved partnership. After leaving Eno & Phelps and previous to engaging in trade for himself he spent two years in Troy, New York.

In 1847 Mr. Clapp came to Illinois, locating in this county, where in company with his father he bought some four hundred acres of land, where Lee Center now stands, and on which he built a log cabin, and has resided on that place every since. During all that time he has carried on farming and has also dealt largely in sheep, having brought the first of these animals of any importance to Lee County.

Mr. Clapp was married in Utica, N. Y., to Cath­erine Bull, a native of Winstead, Conn., and they are the parents of five children, namely: Fred B.; Edwin and Ruggles W., both deceased; Alice L., and Kate E. Mr. Clapp has been very successful in his business undertakings and his farm consist­ing of sixty-two and one half acres, is highly improved and contains good buildings and all con­veniences for carrying on agricultural pursuits. Mr. Clapp is a Republican in politics and he and his family are highly esteemed by their fellow-citizens.

Portraits and Biographical Lee County IL 1892


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