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Randolph County Illinois
Genealogy and History


Note: Some of these may be abstracted, instead of complete transcriptions.  We're adding the complete biographies slowly but surely!
The abstracted bios were transcribed by Jeana Gallagher unless otherwise noted

James H. Taylor
Mr. Taylor has been for the last twenty years one of the leading dry-goods merchants of the City of Sparta, where he is yet engaged in the same business. He is too well known in business and social circles to need any notoriety from the pen of the Atlas historian; but as a brief notice of himself and family will be interesting to the people of Randolph County, we cheerfully devote a portion of our pages to this end. He was born in Lincoln County, Tennessee, April 25th, 1825, and was only about six years of age when, with his parents, he arrived within the limits of Randolph County. He has resided here ever since, has grown up with the country, become identified with its interests, prospered apace with its progress, and is now one of the solid and reliable business gentlemen of his section of the County. He chose in his earlier years as a life-partner Miss Isabelle McDill, a daughter of Archibald McDill, a gentleman who came from Ohio to this County in 1843. This lady is still living to brighten her husband's home, that she has been materially instrumental in creating, and over which she has presided as wife and mother these many years.
Mr. Taylor's father, John K. Taylor, deserves more than a passing notice, as an early settler of the County, and as a gentleman whose fine personal and religious qualities went far in by-gone days to mould and regulate the state of early society. He was born in Lincoln County, Tennessee, in which his parents were very early settlers. He was there raised up to manhood, and there joined in marriage to Miss Sarah Wiley, a very worthy lady, who made an exemplary wife and mother. They both early consecrated their lives to the Saviour, and became connected with the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, a connection they maintained till they came to Illinois in 1831, when they joined the Reformed Presbyterians. The year following his arrival in this County, Mr. Taylor bought a farm just west of Sparta, on which he settled, and where he lived the remainder of his days. He was of a quiet disposition, very firm in his principles, and withal kind and considerate to the feelings and opinions of others. He possessed an integrity of character that nothing could shake, and was industrious both on his farm and as a worker in his Church. He raised by his amiable wife a family of four sons and five daughters. Two, the subject of this sketch, and Emily, the wife of R. B. Little, another prominent dry goods merchant, reside in this County and in the City of Sparta. Hugh is a farmer of Lacrosse County, Wisconsin, where also resides Monica, the wife of David McDill, once a resident of this County, and a relative of the McDills well known here. Mary and husband, David Brown, reside in Hoopeston, Vermilion County, of this State. Huldah married the Rev. W. J. McSurley, a Presbyterian minister, and they now are located in Hillsboro, Ohio. The mother and two children, Sarah and William H., died in Lacrosse County, Wisconsin. The eldest son, Samuel W., and John, a small lad, and a twin brother of Hugh, died in Sparta, and lie buried with their father at this place, in the cemetery under the control of the Reformed Presbyterian Church. These children were all creditably raised, and all became members of the Reformed Presbyterian Church.[Source: "An Illustrated Historical Map of Randolph County, Ills."; by John R. Williams, pub. by W. R. Brink & Co.; 1875; tr. by GT Transcription Team]

John Taylor, Esq.
Mr. Taylor was born in Lincoln Co., Tenn., Sept. 10th, 1816, and was raised up to the estate of manhood within his native County. He had two particular reasons for coming to Illinois. One was that it was next to impossible for a young man without capital to get a good start in business in as old settled state as Tennessee where rich slaveholders owned the principal and best portions of the country; and the other and chief reason, was the unfavorable and partial discriminations made against poor white citizens by slave-owning oligarchs. Though his father was an independent farmer who never owned slaves, still the contempt in which poor while people were held who were unable to own this peculiar kind of property, was rasping to Mr. Taylor's feelings, and he determined to leave a state of society where such a condition of things was established both by law and precedent. Accordingly 1839 found him a citizen of this County where he has ever since made his home. He began here as a carpenter, a trade he learned in his native State, and at which he worked till 1850. In 1849 he was elected Justice of the Peace, a position he filled till Sparta was chartered a city, at which time, by a special act of the Legislature there was created here a City Recorder's Court, and he was elected as Justice of this Court. In 1867 he resigned this position in order to accept that of Government Assessor for the County, an office he resigned in 1870, when he was elected Police Justice, his term expiring in the spring of 1875. He has since given his exclusive attention to the practice of the law, a knowledge of which he mastered in his long incumbency as Magistrate, and was admitted to the Bar some six years previous to the present date.
In 1842 he was married to Miss Jane Hawthorne, daughter of James Hawthorne, an early settler of the County and formerly County Recorder, an office now embraced in that of County Clerk. He has had a large family, twelve children in all, six living, viz.: Wm. B., John G., Samuel L., Albert, Eliza B., and Alice. The Taylor family are originally from Scotland. Hugh, Mr. Taylor's grandfather, came from near Glasgow, and landed in this country in the days of the old Colonies. He finally located in Tennessee and was killed by the Indians on Red River, Ky., while hunting horses. Mr. Taylor's father was born in one of the Carolinas, probably N. C. He was married in Tennessee to Miss Nancy Gault, and raised there nine children. Two, James D., and Jonathan A., came to this county in 1842, and died here the same year. Samuel B., William B., and a younger sister, Eliza, arrived here about the same date. William is yet living in the County where the others died. Hugh and Harrison died in Tennessee. The parents both died there in Lincoln Co., where they had resided for many years.[Source: "An Illustrated Historical Map of Randolph County, Ills."; by John R. Williams, pub. by W. R. Brink & Co.; 1875; tr. by GT Transcription Team]

David Temple
Mr. Temple's grandfather, John Temple, was a Scotchman, and when a young man enlisted into the English army, in order to get passage to America, there being no other means of reaching here at that time, which was just at the beginning of the Revolutionary war. In accordance with his original purpose, he deserted the British army at the first convenient opportunity, and made his way to the lines of the American forces, and served with fidelity the patriot cause till the close of the war. He afterwards settled near Pittsburg, Pa., and was in a short time appointed captain in the State militia, and served with distinction in the Indian wars that soon followed. He lived and died in Pennsylvania, and raised a family of five sons and two daughters. Two only of these, William, Mr. Temple's father, and Robert, came out West, and they now both reside in this County. The other children, John, Samuel, Joseph, and the daughters, remained in Pennsylvania, where they died, each at a good old age.
Mr. Temple's father was born September 10th, 1786. He was twice married in Pennsylvania. His first wife was Miss Margaret Patterson, and the second was Miss Sarah Love. There were three children raised of the first marriage, Eliza, Robert, and John; and eight of the second, David, Sarah, Mary A., Jane, Margaret, Melinda, Tabitha, and Martha, all born in this County, where four are still residents, viz.: David, John, Mary, the wife of Samuel J. Rogers, and Melinda, the wife of John B. Hair. Robert, Jane, the wife of Benjamin Cook, and Martha, the wife of Robert Preston, reside in Perry County. Sarah L., the wife of Charles Preston, and Margaret, the wife of John Preston, though residents at the time, of Perry County, died in Randolph. The mothers of both these sets of children are dead, but Mr. Temple is still surviving. He, and all his children, early became members of the Presbyterian Church, in some of its branches.
Mr. Temple, our subject, was born June 19th, 1821, in Township 5-5, where his father at first settled on coming to this County. In about two years after this date, the family moved to the Township where Mr. Temple now resides, 5-6.
Mr. Temple was married to Miss Sarah McClure, daughter of Dr. McClure, formerly of South Carolina, and a native of Ireland. By this wife he has had eight children, seven living, viz.: Joseph, Nancy, the wife of Edward Foster, James W., David L., Samuel J., Melinda and Margaret T. Joseph is residing in Washington County, engaged in farming. James is studying medicine in St. Louis. These are bright, intelligent children, well educated, and nearly all members of the Church. Mr. Temple has all his life been a plain, straightforward farmer, and now owns a very good farm, where he lives. He never was a party man in politics till the late war, and then joined the Republican party on account of its union principles.[Source: "An Illustrated Historical Map of Randolph County, Ills."; by John R. Williams, pub. by W. R. Brink & Co.; 1875; tr. by GT Transcription Team]

John H. Thompson
Thompson, John H was born 19 Sep 1845 in RC. He married Louisa E Thompson the d/o Thomas M and Martha (Hogue). Their children were: Margaret H and Harry S (d as an infant). His father was James G Thompson born 14 Jun 1813 in Abbeyville Dist SC. He came to RC in 1835. James married Margaret Caroline Campbell. John H was their only child. Margaret died in 1848/9. James then married Ellen Mullin, they had 2 children. James died 14 Jul 1856 in Lawrence CO, AR. (1875)

Robert P. Thompson
Thompson, Robert P was born in RC in 1838In 1863 he was a surveyor who helped with a map of RC. He married Nancy Miller on 11 Mar 1873, the d/o John and Nancy (Boyd). Robert's children were: Ada and 2 infants who died. His parents were James and Mary Thompson who came to RC in 1818. There known children were: Robert and JD. (1894)

Stephen R. Thompson
Thompson, Stephen R was born 17 May 1830 in Nova Scotia. He came to the US in 1837. Stephen spent time in several states, he was a carpenter in Rochester, MN where he built that states first billiard hall. During the CW he was in Co H 5th MN Inf and after the war he moved to Franklin Co, MO. He came to Tilden, IL (RC) in Feb 1871 where he was the PM. In 1858 he married Annie LaSaur, she d in 1863, having 2 children. In 1868 he married Mary (Nettle) Sonels, she was born in England on 08 Nov 1827. Stephen's father was Richard born in Nova Scotia in 1804, where he married Nancy (Embree) who was born in 1811, NY. The family moved to Bangor, ME. Nancy died 10 Jun 1848 and Richard died 22 Jul 1854 in NY. They had 10 children (1894)

Charles Tilmann
Of the farmers of the Okaw Bottom we present the name of Charles Tilmann as one worthy to be represented in the biographical sketches of the substantial citizens of Randolph County. He has lived at his present place of residence, in Township six, Range eight, since August, 1836. He is of German birth. His native place was the town of Arnsberg, Westphalia, Prussia, and he was the son of Anton T. Tilmann, and his wife, Mary Magdalene, whose maiden name was Antliee. There were five children in the family, of whom Charles was the third. He was born on the twenty-fourth of May, 1824.  The first eleven years of Mr. Tilmann's life were spent in Germany. At seven years of age he began his attendance on school in his native town of Arnsberg. Nothing of peculiar importance happened in his life till the year 1836, when his father emigrated with his family to America. In the summer of that year they sailed from Bremen, and in due course of time landed at the city of New York. Casper Anton Pape, who had been a neighbor of the Tilmanns in Germany, had made his home in America two years before this, and had settled in Randolph County, on the old Adkins place, one of the oldest places in Township six-eight. It was through this influence that the Tilmanns came to Randolph County in the latter part of the summer of 1836, and bought one hundred and twenty acres of land in Claim number 283, Survey 476, lying on the Okaw River. Here Anton Tilmann settled, and lived till he died, in 1848, twelve years after his coming to Randolph County. His wife had died the year previous.
There were no schools at that time in the neighborhood. Charles Tilmann only went to school three months after his arrival in America. This was in the winter of 1842, when he went to Kaskaskia, and remained there three months, during which time he was attending school. He worked at home on the farm, and in 1848, as we have before mentioned, his father died. Mr. Tilmann was then twenty-four years of age, a young man of industrious habits, and he bought out the other heirs, and continued on the old homestead farm. February twenty-fifth, 1851, he was married to Henrietta Pape, who was born in Germany, at the little village of Hirschberg, near Arnsberg, the day of her marriage, twenty-three years before. Mrs. Tilmann was six years old on coming to this country, and was the daughter of Casper Anton Pape, whose name appears above in this sketch. Mrs. Tilmann's father died in October, 1851, and her mother in November, 1859. Gustavus Pape, a merchant of Kaskaskia, is her brother, and a sister is the wife of Henry Lortz.
Mr. Tilmann has since been successfully engaged in farming. He has carried on the pursuit with intelligence and faithfulness, and by industry, economy and good management has raised himself to an honorable position among the farmers of Randolph County. In 1858 he bought one hundred acres additional to his land, and in 1867 sixty more, so that he now owns two hundred and eighty acres of land, one of the choicest farm in the Okaw Bottom, whose soil is among the richest in the County.
Mr. and Mrs. Tilmann have four children, Therese, Henry, Charles, and Louise. Mr. Tilmann's brothers are both dead. Of his sisters, one, Mrs. Mittler, is a widow, whose home is with Mr. Tilmann, while Mary is the wife of August Leisse, of St. Louis. The first President Mr. Tilmann voted for was for Lewis Cass, in 1848. He subsequently became a Republican on the foundation of that party, and was among the early Republicans who voted for Fremont in 1856. He voted also for Lincoln, but since the war he has principally acted with the opposition party, and occupied an independent position.[Source: "An Illustrated Historical Map of Randolph County, Ills."; by John R. Williams, pub. by W. R. Brink & Co.; 1875; tr. by GT Transcription Team]

John Tudor
Tudor, John was born 04 Jan 1827 in France. John married Eliza Richards on 09 Dec 1851, the d/o Samuel and Arabella (Price). Eliza died 25 Jan 1876. Their children were: Thomas Henry, Arabella, Guy Seymour (a blacksmith), George Benjamin (Jackson Co), Charles Sherman (teacher in RC), Nellie, Lydia Priscill, Ernest, William Wallace, Rose Hannah and Florence Eliza. John had a farm in T8 R5 Sec 4. His parents were Thomas and Mary (Corbitt) of Shrosphire, England where they had eight children. Thomas came to the US in 1832 to Haverstraw, NY, his wife and children followed in 1836. In May 1849 the family moved to Jackson Co, IL (1894)


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