Lee County Biography


Samuel S. Kaylar, a wealthy resident of Dixon, has valuable farming interests in Lee County, represented by two fine farms, not far from the city, the management of both being under his personal supervision. Mr. Kaylar was born half a mile from Martinsburg, Bedford County, Pa., April 11, 1832. His father, John Kaylar, was born in the same State, for aught that is known to the contrary. He was a harness-maker, and followed that trade in the winter seasons, and the remainder of the year gave his attention to farming. In 1846 he left Bedford County and removed to Indiana with his family, going thither with a three-horse team. He settled among the pioneers of Elkhart County, buying a tract of timber land in the wilderness three miles from Gosh en. The family moved into the log cabin that stood on the place and occupied it for a few years. The surrounding country was but little settled at that period, as was evidenced by the number of deer and other wild game that abounded, and there were no railways in that section for some years. Gosh en was the market where the farmers went to dispose of their produce and obtain necessary supplies. The father of our subject became one of the principal farmers of that county, and in time had one of the finest farms anywhere about. He erected a handsome and commodious brick house, a large barn, and made other valuable improvements. He made it his home until his death in his seventy-sixth year. The maiden name of the mother of our subject was Nancy Martin, and she was born in Blair County, Pa., a daughter of David Martin. She has attained the venerable age of eighty years, and now resides in Marshall County, Ind. She has been a faithful mother and has reared nine children to lives of usefulness.

Our subject was fourteen years old when he accompanied his parents to their pioneer home in Indiana. He attended the primitive schools of those days that were taught in log houses, which were furnished with seats made by splitting small trees, and hewing one side smooth, with wooden pins placed underneath for support. Mr. Kaylar continued to live with his father until he was twenty-one years old, and then worked on a farm by the month for three months. At the end of that time, he established a brick yard on his father's farm, and was engaged in the manufacture of bricks the ensuing seven years. He thus obtained a good start in life, and in 1858 he made a tour of the West with a view of investing some of his capital. While in Missouri he entered forty acres of Government land in Harrison County, and bought two hundred acres that had previously been entered. Returning to Indiana from that trip, he purchased eighty acres of land in Kosciusko County, and after living upon it two years, sold it at an advance. His next move was to Grundy County, this State, and he invested in an eighty-acre tract of land in Braceville Township, to which he added eighty acres more by a subsequent purchase. In 1877 he went from there to Gardner, and was a resident of that place until 1882. Then selling his property there, he came to Lee County, bought a home in Dixon, a farm in Dixon Township, and another ten miles south of the city. Two years later he disposed of the latter farm, and bought one hundred and sixty acres, four and one-half miles south of the city. He still owns both farms, and superintends the working of them, although residing in the city.

Mr. Kaylar was married in 1860 to Miss Isabel Anderson, a native of Ohio, in whom he has found a wife who has materially contributed to his success in life. They have had three children: Albert, Emma and May. The latter, the youngest child, died at the age of six years. Emma married Eugene Bartholomew, of Dixon, and they have one child, whom they have named Maud. Our subject's social and financial standing in the community is of the best. He is a loyal citizen, and as such interests himself in politics, being a firm supporter of the Republican party.

Portraits and Biographical Lee County IL 1892


Back Home