Lee County Biographies



Cornelius Vroom is contributing to the continued prosperity of Nelson Township as an industrious farmer, who is profitably carrying on his calling on his well-tilled farm of eighty acres of land, which is provided with good improvements, and is in a pleasant locality. advantageously situated just east of Nelson Station, on sections 16, 17 and 20, his residence being on the first mentioned section.

Mr. Vroom was born on Staten Island, April 28, 1840, coming of the old Dutch stock that peopled New York in Colonial times. His father, Henry Vroom, was a native of New York, and spent the most of his long life on Staten Island, dying there in 1889, at the age of eighty-five years. He was a shoemaker and a farmer, devoting his latter years to agricultural pursuits. His wife, whose maiden name was Elizabeth Christopher, survives him, and is still living on the old homestead. She is now eighty-three years of age, and her life has been wholly spent on the island where she was born. She is a devoted member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, as was her husband. He was an old-line Whig in his politics until the formation of the Republican party, when he transferred his allegiance to that great political organization.

The paternal grandfather of our subject, Henry Vroom, Sr., was a native of the Empire State, and the blood of Holland ancestry ran in his veins. He always lived in the State of his nativity, the most of his life being passed as a small farmer on Staten Island, where he died at the home of his son Henry, at the age of eighty-three years. His wife was also a native of New York, and she died on Staten Island when very old. Both were strong Methodists in religion, and he was a Whig in politics.

Our subject is the third child of a family of four sons and a like number of daughters, of whom seven are yet living, and are all married. He is the only one residing in Illinois. He was reared under wholesome home influences, principles of right doing being early instilled into his mind, and when he went forth into the world, a youth of nineteen years, he was well-equipped for life's battles. It was then, in 1859, that he came to this county, and has since lived in Nelson Township. He was poor in purse, but his sturdy spirit, ability to work, and thrifty habits have placed him in an independent position. In 1869 he had sufficient means to purchase his present farm, and then began farming and stock-raising on his own account. He has placed every foot of his land under a high state of cultivation, and has his place fitted up with every convenience for carrying on his operations successfully. He is a man of steady habits and stable character, always strictly honest in money matters, and his neighbors and associates have a high opinion of him. He and his wife are attendants at the Methodist Church, giving liberally of their means to its support, and heartily co-operating with its Pastor and other members of the congregation in promoting all plans for social or moral improvement of the community. In politics, he is a Republican.

By his marriage in Union City, Branch County, Mich., with Miss Libby, daughter of Henry and Harriet (Swift) Trear, our subject secured a wife who is devoted to his interests, and is a cheerful and capable helpmate. She was born in Erie County, Ohio, April 27, 1840, but she was mostly reared and educated in Branch County, Mich., whither her parents removed when she was a child of six years. Her father was horn in Germany,and came to the United States when twenty-seven years of age. He was married after coming to this country, his wife being a native of New York. After the birth of all their children, they left the home that they had established in Ohio, an settled on a farm in Branch County, Mich., where they lived until death removed them from the scene of their labors at a ripe age, he being seventy-one and she seventy-four when they passed away. They were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and were truly good people. He was a Republican in his politics. Mrs. Vroom is the fifth of the family of four sons and three daughters born to her parents, of whom but one, the youngest son is dead, all the other, with the exception of Mrs. Vroom, still living in Michigan.

1892 Portrait and Biographical Record Lee Co Pg 197


Lee Co Bios

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