The first marriage license issued in the county was made out by H. W. Beard, Clerk of
the County Commissioners' Court, and it was, no doubt, intended to authorize Mr. Williamson Spence and Miss Mary
Darnall to solemnize a marriage ; but so far as the record goes, it only authorized the marriage of Williamson
to Miss Mary Darnall ; so that, so far as the record has anything to do with the matter, the descendants of Spence
are all Williamsons.
It is not improbable that this clerk — H. W. Beard — was an old bachelor, and took delight
in mutilating marriage licenses ; for the next license authorized Simeon Mad, instead of Simeon Madden, to marry
Since that period, 6,000 marriages have been authorized by the various County Clerks.
[The History of Livingston County, Illinois - Wm. LeBaron, Jr. &
Co. - 186 Dearborn Street, Chicago (1878)]