Lee County Biography

Eustace Edward Shaw
Mabel (Smith) Shaw


EUSTACE E. SHAW (deceased), late associate editor and joint proprietor of the "Dixon Evening Telegraph," was born at Dixon, 111., March 28, 1857, the son of Mr. and Mrs. B.F. Shaw, and died in that city, Sept. 5. 1902. Mr. Shaw learned the printing trade in his father's office, and gave his best efforts to assisting his father to build up the business of the B. F. Shaw Printing Company, during the latter years of his life serving efficiently as associate editor and business manager of the "Evening Telegraph." The following tribute to his memory was paid by the Rev. J. F. Newton at the funeral, which was largely attended by neighbors who deeply mourned his untimely death: "He lived with Nature--a life of simple sweetness. He loved his fellow man and was kind of heart. There are none who knew him but who are eager to vouchsafe these lovable attributes to Eustace Shaw. He was always in touch with the subtle, tender influences that are akin to a manly nature; and to know him was to love him in turn. It might fittingly be reiterated. 'If every one to whom he had done some kindly act should drop a flower upon his grave, he would sleep beneath a bower of roses.' Eustace Shaw was energetic in every-day life and the soul of honor. With all who knew him his word was a sacred pledge and the ties that bound him to his friends were as inseparable as the strongest links of gold. There were none too poor, none too lowly, to receive his every-day challenge of good will and friendship, and when he passed to his reward he was simply and truly among hosts of loving friends who had preceded him. "His memory cannot die with those who were privileged to know him in his ture light. There are many who have accomplished more in worldly affairs, but we Know that the spirit of Eustace Shaw rests at peace, content with the love he inspired in others while living his worldly life. The earnest prayers that went up from so many hearts the day of his death must have reached him and given him quiet and peace. Eustace Shaw loved the woods and the flowers; he loved everything in Nature. He loved his native river; and his repose was assuring and keen when he might feast his eyes upon the gentle waters as they murmured by. He saw the pretty things in life, and more--he wanted others to see them and share their simple beauty with him. He knew no selfishness. He never deliberated over a sacrifice to be made for a friend--no, it came spontaneous; and many a noble tender has he made at the altar of friendship. He was never so quick to act as when the friend was in the direst distress--any conceivable reward unlocked for an impossibility. He worshipped at the shrine of home, wife and children, and God has taken him as tenderly to his heart as he would take the most innocent babe; for how could God but love a man who was loved by all his fellow men and who despised hypocrisy, shunned bad habits and was honest and true to himself, as well the world at large? He passed away with a smile on his lips and a word of assurance to those about him; and this was out the crowning example of his great bravery and his solicitous concern for those whom he loved. Then the Guardian Angel said, 'Peace be with thy soul.' and the life of Eustace Shaw was ended."

Deceased was descended from Puritan stock; Governor Bradford, of Massachusetts Bay, being of the fifth (5) generation; three of his ancestors were in the Revolutionary War. He leaves a widow, Mabel (Smith) Shaw, and three sons, George Boules, Benj. T. and Robert Eustace Shaw.

Transcribed by Karen Holt - 1904 History of Lee County Illinois edited by Mr. A.C. Bardwell


An honored son of an honored sire and the associate of his father in business for many years as assistant managing editor of the Dixon Telegraph, Eustace Edward Shaw was born in the city of Dixon, March 27, 1857, his parents being Benjamin F. and Annie E. (Eustace) Shaw. At the usual age he became a public-school pupil and after mastering the work of the grades in his native city he entered the Rock River Seminary, which at that time stood on the beautiful site of Bluff Park, where for many years was the Shaw home. He had not yet attained his majority when in 1877 he went to Sumner county, Kansas, w here he purchased a tract of land and developed an excellent farm. After continuing its cultivation for a few years, however, he sold his property in the Sunflower state and returned to his native city. In 1882, however, he removed to St. Louis, where he continued his residence for five years, receiving additional training in the printing business, which he had formerly learned and which he mastered with completeness, acquainting himself with every phase of the business. When he again went to Dixon in 1887 he joined his father, who was owner and editor of the Telegraph, became junior member of the company and a writer on the editorial staff. His connection with the paper continued from that time until his demise, and he became its managing editor and business manager. The policy which he followed was in keeping with the high standards which had ever been maintained by the paper. One of his contemporaries in the newspaper publication said: "In the death of Eustace E. Shaw the field of journalism has lost a brilliant writer and Dixon a good, honest American citizen." Another said: "He stood well with the members of the newspaper fraternity. The public in this vicinity feel that a good man has fallen from the ranks." Still another wrote : "

We learned to respect him as a man, and although a rival in the journalistic field, to regard him as a personal friend. His cheerful disposition, his unfailing courtesy and his genial salutations are kindly remembered. As a journalist he was fair and honest; he never wilfully wounded any man's feelings, although maintaining always an editor's right to criticize where he deemed criticism necessary. His familiar form and cheerful greeting will be sadly missed in the little city he loved so well, and where most of his useful life had been spent. He has passed over to the majority, but his name and character were unsullied. He will be sincerely mourned. He has left us in the prime of life, but ' That life is long which "Answers life's great end.' — Swarts." All this is indicative of the record and standing of Mr. Shaw among those with whom he was associated in personal and business relations. His best traits of character were reserved for his own fireside and in his home he was a devoted husband and father. He was married on May 22, 1889, to Miss Mabel Smith, of Darlington, Wisconsin, and they became the parents of three sons, George B., Benjamin T. and Robert, who with the mother survive.

The death of E. E. Shaw occurred in 1902. In the memorial since his demise it was said: "Mr. Shaw was a man whose domestic life was an ideal one; but while his choicest joy was found among the loved ones of his own fireside, he was far from insensible to the claims of society and friends. Of his gentlemanly social qualities all who knew him can testify. No man in our midst enjoyed a larger circle of friends than did he ; and no man certainly was more worthy of the love so spontaneously accorded him. Ever kindly considerate, not only for those of his own household, or his personal friends, but for the youngest and most irresponsible of those in his employ, and of all with whom he was brought into associaton, his loss will be most keenly and widely felt. He was the embodiment of unselfish devotion to his parents and family, and his unswerving loyalty to his friends, through all emergencies, bound him to them with ties stronger than steel. He took the keenest delight in granting a favor, even to a casual acquaintance, and seemed scarcely to possess the ability to say no to a request. He doubtless made some enemies — as a man outspoken for the right, as he sees it, does do; but no man could accuse him of acting deceitfully, for he was a man of the keenest conscientiousness and the soul of honor. Surely a good man has gone from our midst and the community is sadly the loser." Such is a splendid tribute to a man honored and esteemed by all who knew him and, most of all, where he was best known.

History of Lee County by Frank E. Stevens 1914


While yet in her twenties, Mrs. Eustace Shaw was left a widow with three young boys. In order to gain an independent livelihood she entered the newspaper office of the Dixon Evening Telegraph, of which her father-in-law, B. F. Shaw, was owner and editor-in-chief. B. F. Shaw was one of twelve editors who met in convention at Decatur when the Republican party was formed in Illinois, a convention at which Lincoln was present. Under the very guidance of her father-in-law, who edited this publication for sixty years, Mrs. Shaw received her training. She became actively engaged on the paper as business executive, bequeathed to her one-half of the newspaper interests and to her in trust for her boys the remaining half, giving her the presidency of the company. In connection with the Dixon Evening Telegraph is one of the largest and best equipped jobbing plants in the state, outside of Chicago. Mabel Shaw is the daughter of Henry Smith and Mary (Redihalgh) Smith. Darlington, Wisconsin, is her native city, and she attended the public schools there, later studying at Dixon College. She was the wife of Eustace E. Shaw, Editor and Manager of the Dixon Evening Telegraph. Mrs. Shaw is a member of the World's Press Congress, Inland Daily Press Association (Past Vice-President), Illinois Press Association, and Honolulu Advertising Club (honorary member). She is an Episcopalian. A signal honor was bestowed on Mrs. Shaw when she became one of two representatives appointed by the governor to represent Illinois at the Sesqui-Centennial in Philadelphia.

Contributed by Karen Fyock -- "Who's Who in Illinois Women - Makers of History" by Gilman 1927

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