Lee County Biography

James C. Luce
Amboy Township


Although not one of the early settlers of this county.Mr. Luce has resided here for so long a period that he is justly entitled tot he honored noame of pioneer. Since first he located here he has made his home on the fine farm located on section 11, Amboy Twp. which he purchased soon after his arrival in the county, which was 1857. The homestead comprises one hundred and forty acres and contains good improvements in the way of barns, granaries and other important accessories of a well-managed farm. To have obtained this valuable possession through unaided exertions proves the use of excellent judgment and unceasing energy, and to those qualities Mr.Luce owes no small measure of his prosperity.

A native of Hornby, Steuben County, N.Y., Mr. Luce was born Oct. 16, 1828 and is the son of Jacob and Sarah (Covenhoven) Luce, natives of Montgomery County, N.Y. His parents emigrated from the Empire State to Will County, this State in 1845, being accompanied in the removal hither by their four children. THey established a home in that county and cultivated a farm until 1852, when they removed to this county and settled in Amboy Township, and there residing until their death, the father - November 1, 1884 and the mother in 1857. Six children blessed their union, of whom our subject was the eldest. He passed the early years of his life in the Empire State, where as the eldest son he was compelled to assist in supporting the family at an early age. His school advantages, which were limited, consisted of such opportunities for acquiring knowledge as were afforded by the schools of that day.

Whenhe had about grown to a stalwart, vigorous manhood, he accompanied his parents to Illinois and located with them in Will County, where they lived in Crete Township near the village of Crete. April 1, 1856 he removed from Crete to this county, being accompanied by his family, comprising his wife and an adopted child. He settled on Section 11, AMboy Twp. and at once commenced the development of the land which he had purchased and which today repays his indefatigable efforts by bountiful harvests. As from childhood he has been engaged in agricultural pursuits, he is a practical and thorough farmer, having a broad and extended knowledge of the bet methods of conducting farming operations.

Mr. Luce was married in Bremen, Cook County IL to Mary E. Mynard, and their union brought to them four children - William, John J., Julia Maria and Georgia, all of whom died in infancy. Mrs. Mary Luce died in Amboy Towsship July 8, 1872. Afterward Mr. Luce married Mrs. Margaret Jane (Keefer) Jeffrey, their wedding took place in Marion Twp. This county. Mrs. Luce at the time of her marriage was the widow of George Jeffrey, who died in Marion Twp. She was born in Athens County OH Dec. 30, 1843, and her union with Mr. Luce has brought them two children - Martha J. and Mary E. twins. A Republican in his political views, Mr. Luce takes an active part in local politics and has held some of the township offices. He and his wife are members of the Baptist Church and have always been liberal supporters of the Gospel.

Portraits and Biographical Lee County IL 1892 Pg 383

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