McLean County, Illinois
Funks Grove Township
This township was named for its first settlers, Isaac and Absalom Funk, who came in 1824. They picked one of the finest groves in the county. Early they entered into the business of cattle raising. William Brock, an early associate of the Funks, died on his way to market with cattle. The Funks built the first log cabin, 12 by 14 feet, and in this building eight persons lived in 1824-25. Funk bought his first land with $2,000 of borrowed money. He made money In selling cattle and invested it in land, acquiring 20,000 acres.
Isaac and Cassandra Funk had a family of eight children, the third generation of the family being now numerous in McLean county. Isaac Funk was a friend and hearty booster of Lincoln. Funk himself was elected to the state senate, and died while holding that position. Many of the other Funks have served in public positions. Thousands of acres of the lands acquired by Isaac Funk are still owned by the family. The township's population is 800.
About ten miles southwest of Bloomington, on US 66, lies Funks Grove, nucleus of the famous and extensive seed farms operated here by the Funk Brothers Seed Company. The land holdings of the company total 22,000 acres, most of which are devoted to seed experiments and developments and to livestock breeding. Seed from these acres is shipped to most corn-growing states in America and to many foreign countries.
Funks Grove is the only community of Funks Grove Township, which in 1950 had a total population of 558.
First settlers of the township were Isaac Funk and his brother Absalom, together with a close friend of the two, William Brock. All three arrived in the spring of 1824. In the fall of that same year came Isaac and Absalom Funk's brother-in-law, Robert Stubblefield. At a later period Isaac Funk was elected to the Illinois state legislature.[This is McLean County, Illinois by: John Drury, The Loree Co., Chicago, Illinois (1955) (Transcribed by: Teri Moncelle Colglazier)]
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