Lee County Biography

Israel Zug
Franklin Grove

Israel Zug a resident of Franklin Grove, where he is engaged in horticulture, is prominent in the public life of Lee County as a member of the County Board of Supervisors, rep­resenting China Township. He is a descendant of an ancient family in Switzerland, being one of the sixth generation in the United States, three brothers having come over from the Swiss Father­land to this country in Colonial times, who were early settlers in different counties in Pennsylvania. One of them changed the spelling of the original name to Zook, another changed the spelling to Zuck, while Uli Zug, the ancestor of our subject, retained the correct orthography, as he settled in Lancaster County, Pa., among Germans who were familiar with the name Zug, which means train, and is applied to many places in Switzerland. Uli Zug had a son John, who attained the age of ninety-six years, and the next in line was Abra­ham, whose son John was the father of our subject. In religion, the ancestors of Mr. Zug who first came to this country were Mennonites, but the father, grandfather and great grandfather of our subject were ministers in the German Baptist Church.

He of whom these lines are written was the fourth of the eight children of his parents, and he was born in Lebanon County, Pa., March 14, 1827. In early life he learned the trade of a tanner, which he followed in his native State until 1850. Ambitious to try his fortunes in what was then a part of the “Great West,” he came to Illinois in that year, journeying by the Ohio, Mississippi and Illinois River's, and landing at Peru. He pur­chased eighty acres of land in La Salle County, which he tilled profitably for four years. At the expiration of that time, he removed to Franklin Grove, and continued farming for two years there­after. From 1858 to 1881, he owned and con­ducted the principal meat market at Franklin Grove, and since that time has given his attention to horticulture. He has a natural taste for this pursuit, brings an intelligent and enquiring mind to the work of carrying it on, and is well in­formed as to the best methods to be followed in order to make it successful. In the decade that he has devoted to this line, he has given close atten­tion to every detail, and has built up a business from which he derives a good income.

Mr. Zug was married in 1849 to Rachael L., daughter of James and Martha Johnson, and a na­tive of Chester County, Pa., who was born in 1829. They have had as much joy in their domestic life as usually falls to the lot of mortals, and among their blessings are the eight children born to them. One child died in infancy; and their son Nathan is dead. He went to Oregon in early manhood, where he married and died, leaving two children. The following are the children spared to our sub­ject and his wife: John, a bricklayer, who resides in Iowa; Alfred, a butcher in Hutchinson, Kan.; Frank, a butcher in Iowa; Liewellyn, who lives at home with his parents; Mary, wife of Elmer E. Mathews, a lawyer of Sedan, Kan.; and Hattie, wife of Charles Secrist, a clerk in time Union Transfer Depot, at Council Bluffs, Iowa. our subject is a man whose character and high principles, and his capacity for affairs, have made him conspicuous in the civic life of his town­ship and county. He has been Justice of the Peace, has been Collector, and is now serving his second term as a representative of China Township on the County Board of Supervisors. He is a saga­cious and safe counsellor, and always gives good advice when his neighbors seek his guidance in any matter. He is faithful to the duties imposed upon him as a public official, and never neglects an opportunity to push forward the interests en­trusted to his care. He is frank and warm hearted, is conscientious and straightforward in all his acts, and his religion is of both the mind and the heart. He and his wife are believers in the doctrines of the Advent Church. In politics, he is a stanch Republican.

1892 Portrait and Biographical Record Lee Co

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