Lee County Biography


Ralph Joseph Dean, who since July 1, 1904, has edited and published the Ashton Gazette, was born in LaMoille, Bureau county, Illinois, February 7, 1881. He is a son of George B. and Grace L. (Crossman) Dean, the former of whom was engaged in business in LaMoille for about forty years, during the last twenty of which he conducted an undertaking and furniture establishment.

Ralph Joseph Dean acquired his education in the public schools of his native city, graduating from the LaMoille high school in 1899. Following the completion of his studies he turned his attention to photography, conducting a studio in Mendota for about three years. Since July 1, 1906, he has owned and edited the Ashton Gazette, and he has made this paper a power in local affairs, supporting in its columns many movements of reform and advancement. He has made it an excellent news medium and under his able management its circulation and advertising patronage have steadily increased.

In York, Nebraska, July 19, 1906, Mr. Dean married Miss Alice E. Blanchard, eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harry C. Blanchard, formerly of Mendota, Illinois. Mr. and Mrs. Dean had two children: Roland Howard and Helen Maude, both of whom have passed away. A son, Robert Ralph, was born January 31, 1914.

Mr. Dean is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church and is connected fraternally with the Modern Woodmen of America, being at present clerk of Ashton Camp, No. 48. He is also a member of Ashton Lodge, No. 531, A.F.&A.M., and past grand of Ashton Lodge, No. 977, I.O.O.F. He gives his political allegiance to the republican party and is an earnest supporter of its principles and candidates. He is a man of energy, enterprise and resource--qualities which he has made effective forces in promoting his advancement in journalistic circles.

Transcribed by Karen Holt - 1914 History of Lee County Illinois Vol 2 by Frank E. Stevens.


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