Lee County Biography


For over thirty years W. J. Edwards has been engaged in the livery business in Amboy, his native city, and during the intervening period has gained success and prominence in business circles and a place among the men of marked ability and substantial worth in the community. Since 1908 he has been supervisor of Amboy township and the duties of this office he discharges in a capable and progressive way. He was born September 15, 1855, and is a son of Isaac and Elizabeth (Saul) Edwards. The father was the first livery man in Amboy, establishing an enterprise of this character here in 1855. He was also a railroad contractor and aided in the construction of the Illinois Central, the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul and the Toledo & St. Louis Railroads. He was a stanch republican in his political beliefs and held various public offices, including those of sheriff and county supervisor. During the Civil war he was horse buyer for the government and he proved always competent and trustworthy in positions of responsibility. He died in April, 1900, at the age of seventy-two, and is buried in the Prairie Repose cemetery near Amboy. His wife survives him and makes her home in that city.

W. J. Edwards acquired his early education in the public schools of Amboy and afterward attended Chicago University, which he left at the age of nineteen. He then engaged in the livery business and in railroad contracting under his father and he has been connected with the former occupation for a period of more than thirty years. He has now an excellent establishment and controls a large patronage, for his prices are at all times reasonable and his business methods above reproach.

In Amboy, in May, 1880, Mr. Edwards married Miss Rose Nannery, a native of New York city. Mrs. Edwards passed away June 4, 1910, and is buried in St. Patrick's cemetery in Amboy. She left five children: Elizabeth, a graduate of Sinsinawa College and also of the State Normal School; Annie, residing at home; Evelyn, a graduate of the Amboy high school; and John and William, who are assisting their father.

Mr. Edwards is a republican in his political views and is a member of the board of aldermen of Amboy. He is treasurer of the Lee County Fair Association and has important fraternal affiliations, being high priest of the Masonic chapter and a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks of Dixon. During a period of connection with business interests of Amboy covering thirty years and more he has been found honorable, faithful and reliable in his business relations and has an enviable reputation, based upon a long period of upright and straightforward dealing.

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


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