WILLIAM WALDEN was born in Jefferson County, N. Y;, on January 25, 1820. At the age of ten years he went with his parents to Chautauqua County, N. H., and assisted his father on the farm. In 1843 they moved to the town of Homer, Licking Co., Ohio, and in 1853 to Richland County, Ill., where he has since resided, engaged in teaching school, he having taught ten years in Ohio, previous to coming to Illinois. He continued teaching here until 1880, since which year he has been engaged in farming. Before he engaged in teaching, he attended different sessions of the Normal School. In 1845 he was married to Virginia O. Hurd, who was born in Orange County, Va., in 1825. Eight children have been born to them, viz.: Cephas L., Oliver L.( now in Kansas), Clarissa E. (now Mrs. Miller), Norton E., Lawrence E., a resident of Kansas; Myron T., Cordelia E., and John O. Mr. Walden is largely engaged in the manufacture of sorghum sugar and syrup. He has made as high as 3,000 gallons of syrup per year. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
GOTTLIEB WEISS, brick maker, was born January 6, 1857, in Olney. He is the son of Gottlieb Weiss, who was born in Switzerland and there learned the carpenters' trade; in 1848, he emigrated to America, and located in Olney; here he died, January 17, 1880, aged fifty three years. On coming here he followed the carpenters' trade; but his last twenty years he was engaged in the manufacture of brick. Gottlieb, the subject of this sketch, has worked at this business since a boy, and his yard turns out about 600,000 in a season. He was married April 5, 1883, to Rosa Weiland, who was born in Jefferson City, Mo. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
L. D. WHITAKER was born in Posey County, Ind., on April 8, 1829. He was there raised and educated, and taught school there five terms. On July 15, 1855, he was married to Martha J. Thomson, also of Posey County. After his marriage he came to Richland County, Ill., and purchased 160 acres of land, where he now resides. He came here with nothing, but he has now a very comfortable home, with about 110 acres of his land well improved. He has probably the finest private library of any in this part of the county. Mrs. Whitaker has borne her husband three children, viz.: Eda (now Mrs. Jackson); Mae (now teaching school), and Page, attending school. Mr. Whitaker has taught four terms in the school where his daughter is now teaching He was the first Township Collector, afterward Assessor and Collector, and for several years Township Trustee. He and his wife are both members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
LEANDER D. WHITTAKER, who is numbered among the leading farmers of Richland County, residing on section 3, has made his home in this county since 1853, and has lived on his present farm almost continuously since October, 1855. He has been prominently identified with the development of the county and has been an eye-witness of much of its growth and progress. He was born in Robb Township, Posey County, Ind., April 8, 1829, and is a son of Jacob and Mary A. (Defur) Whittaker. The father went to Indiana in 1811, at the age of thirteen years. Subsequently, he made several trips to North Carolina on horseback and often encamped with the Indians while en route. He was married August 20, 1822, to Mary Defur, who was born March 29, 1805. She died in Steubenville, Ind., August 15, 1851. Twelve children have been born of that union, as follows: Esther C., now the wife of T. Thompson; Mrs. Elizabeth J. Shelby; Leander D., of this sketch; Robert A., who was a member of the First Indiana Cavalry and died at Pilot Knob during the service; Isaac N., of Richland County; James A.; George W., who was killed in the of Marks' Mill, Ark., during the late war; William D. F.; Mary S., wife of J. W. Best; Sarah F., wife of H. C. Harlow; Eugene S.; and one who died in infancy. After the death of his first wife, Mr., Whitaker married Mr. Eliza (Axton) Howe, and unto them were born two children, of whom one died in infancy. The other, Mattie, died at the home of our subject. November 5, 1888, It was in 1851, that Jacob Whittaker came with his family to Richland County, locating in Madison Township, where he resided until called to the home beyond. His death occurred October 8, 1861, at the age of sixty-three years.
Under the parental roof Leander Whitaker grew to manhood. He came with his parents to this county in 1853, and, as before stated, located upon his present farm in October, 1855. On the 15th of July previous, he was married, his wife being a native of Indiana, and their union was blessed with six children, but Eva, Lulu and one unnamed died in infancy. Ada, the eldest, is the wife of W. P. Jackson; May is the wife of C. E. Mattoon; and Page, the only son, married Miss Anna E. Webber, and resides on the homestead farm. Mr. and Mrs. Whitaker also have seven grandchildren.
Our subject continued his farming operations until 1874, when he removed to Olney in order to give his children better educational privileges, and there resided for five years. In 1879 be returned to the farm and has since devoted his energies to agricultural pursuits. He now owns two hundred and eighty acres of land, and of this two hundred are under a high state of cultivation. With the exception of ten acres the entire amount was improved and developed by the owner. After his marriage, which took place in Mt, Vernon, Ill., he brought his bride and all their possessions to Illinois in a wagon, and they began their domestic life in a small log cabin, which be bad previously built. From morning till night the young husband labored in the field, and as the years went by the once raw tract was transformed into rich and fertile fields, which yield abundant harvests. The labor of Mr. and Mr. Whitaker has brought to them a comfortable competence.
This worthy couple are among the most highly respected citizens of the community. He is a member of the New Church, and his wife is a member of the Methodist Church. He cast his first Presidential vote for Gen. Fremont and supported the Republican party until 1892, when he voted for Gen. Weaver. Mrs. Whittaker takes quite an active interest in Prohibition work. She joined a temperance society at the age of seven years, and has since been identified with the cause. In everything tending to benefit the community or advance its best interests, Mr. and Mrs. Whitaker bear their part, and in the community where they have so long made their home they have a wide circle of friends and acquaintances who them highly. Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887) - Submitted by Judy Edwards
GEORGE F. WISSHACK, confectioner, was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, June 17, 1863, and is the oldest of four living children born to Adolph G. and Matilda (Bagley) Wisshack, the former a native of Wurtemburg, Germany, and the latter of West Virginia, but of English descent. Adolph G. Wisshack was educated in his native land, and while yet a young man he emigrated to the United States, first settling at Cincinnati, then removing to Wheeling, W. Va., where he was married. He soon returned to Cincinnati, then opened a grocery store at Covington, Ky., but in 1880 went back to Wheeling, W. Va., where he still resides. George F. Wisshack, our subject, received a good common school and academic education and also took a commercial course at Los Angeles, Cal. At the age of eight years he went into a stationery and confectionery store at Covington, Ky., as an errand boy, and at the same time went to school. In 1877, he came to Olney, Ill., where he was employed part of the time in his uncle's confectionery store, and at the same time attended school for four years. In 1881 he went to Los Angeles, Cal., where he was employed in a confectionery for eight months, taking his commercial course at night. In the fall of 1882 he returned to Olney and went into a drug store as a salesman, remaining until June, 1883, when he, in company with George D. Johnstone and William A. Startsman, bought the confectionery store of his uncle, where they are doing an excellent business. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
JOHN M. WILSON was the first official of Richland County, being appointed Clerk of the Circuit Court June 17,1841, whilst the other officials were not elected until the first Monday in August following; he was born in Prince William County, Virginia, within two miles of Thoroughfare Gap, at the old Bull Run church, on March 13, 1811. His father, Jacob Wilson, of Scotch Irish descent, was a Pennsylvanian by birth. His grandfather Wilson fought in the Revolutionary war, and was wounded and taken prisoner at the massacre of Paoli. His uncle Silas fought and was wounded at the battle of Brandywine. His father, J. Wilson, was at Harper's Ferry in 1798, under Col. William Washington; in the war of 1812 served at the White House, in the neighborhood of Washington and Baltimore. His mother, Margaret King, a most exemplary woman, was, by her mother's side, a Kearney, and a relation of Gen. Phil Kearney, who was a second cousin. The subject of this sketch was one of ten children, and until the age of twelve remained at the place of his birth and for six years went to an old field school. His family, in 1824, moved to Jefferson County, Va., within eight miles of Harper's Ferry, where they farmed. On October 27,1828, they left Virginia for Illinois, and on the 17th of December following, by steady traveling in a four horse wagon reached their destination, White County, and at the home of Chief Justice William Wilson, a cousin, where they passed the winter. In the spring of 1829, removing to the Skillit Fork, eight miles northwest of Carmi, where they engaged in stock raising and farming, the nearest neighbor being three mile distant; being dense woods; wolves plenty, with deer and turkeys by the hundred, and a few bear and panthers. On more than one occasion John M. was treed by wolves. In 1832, being then twenty one years of age, John volunteered in service as Second Sergeant in the Black Hawk campaign, in Captain Thomas' company; Colonel Eubank's regiment of White County volunteers, forming part of General Posey's brigade. He served through the campaign and was mustered out of service at Rock River. Returning home he resumed the occupation of farming, and continued that occupation, except at short intervals, after the death of his elder brother, William; with his brother, James, purchased a one half section farm southwest of Carmi, where, with his parents, two brothers and three sisters, he resided until 1839, when he surrendered his interest in the farm and stock to his family and studied law at Carmi with E. B. Webb; was admitted to the bar in 1848, and in the first great Whig demonstration at Carmi in the opening of the celebrated Harrison campaign in 1840, acted as one of the Marshals of the day. Being appointed Circuit Clerk of Richland County, at the age of thirty, on the 5th day of July, he came to the County of Richland where Olney now stands. On the 31st of March he was married to Harriet A. Powers, whose family had, the preceding fall, moved from Vermont. Mr. Wilson soon became prominent as a lawyer and a Whig leader, and so continued until the disorganization of the Whig party; when he took a like position in the Democratic party until 1860, when he took sides with the Republican party, with which he has ever since acted on party questions. In 1847 he resigned his position as Clerk, and devoted his attention to the practice of law, in which he was thought invincible. In 1849 he bought of Daniel Cox his newspaper office; an old Ramage press, the first used in Vincennes, and on which the first paper in Olney (the News) was printed. For several years he published a paper and during the first year of the Rebellion published two, one in Vincennes, and one, the first, in Flora. He also published a paper in Salem (the Gazette) where for a short period, he resided. Mr. Wilson suggested the incorporation of Olney as a village in 1848, and drew up the ordinances. During the Rebellion he took a most active part, and by a suggestion in his paper at Vincennes advising volunteers on furlough to practice pistol firing at the butternut breast pins of the rebel sympathizers in that city, removed in a single day all those secesh ornaments. When the O. & M. Railway was first surveyed, a direct line ran near Fairview, seven miles south of Olney. The O. & M. Railroad company, as a condition to come to Olney, required a subsidy from the county of $50,000. As editor of the only paper in Olney and the most active politician and best known attorney, Mr. Wilson at once began an active canvass of the county, and with the aid of John Wolf, William Shelby and some others, had the $50,000 voted, and though never called for, it was the prime agent in bringing that road to Olney and making it what it is. In 1867 Mr. Wilson suggested the incorporation of Olney as a city, drew up the charter and ordinances, and by the aid of Dr. Bowyer. had it passed by the Legislature, and after an active canvass against most bitter opposition, had it adopted by the people, and was elected the first Mayor and at once commenced a system of city improvements. In 1873 Mr. Wilson was again elected Mayor, and by his casting vote gave Olney its fine brick pavements, lighted the city and made it what it is the best paved city in Illinois. Mr. Wilson's last forty years of his life has been largely devoted to public interests and public good, and he is now, at the age of seventy two, City Attorney, actively engaged in the city interests of his beloved Olney, of which he claims to be the first citizen; having been appointed Clerk before the county seat was located, and when located on Lilly & Barney's donation, there being no one living on it. Mr. Wilson is as active as most men at fifty, with mind and memory wholly unimpaired; perfectly familiar with the world's history and geography. He has not an enemy, and every man, woman and child in Olney ever greets with a smile and kind word, "Uncle John." Mr. Wilson was for nine years stock agent and attorney for the O. & M. Railway. After the G. & M. Railway had been chartered for ten years and almost defunct, Mr. Wilson, in 1867, suggested the voting of a subsidy. His wife is a cousin of the celebrated sculptor, Hiram Powers, and a sister of Frank Powers, one of Olney's most energetic citizens, and is herself a most exemplary Christian worker. Mr. Wilson has five children living, John F, Phil, Alice (married to William Ferriman). Ida and Ada, twins, at home with their parents. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
JOHN MARSHALL WILSON, deceased, was for many years one of Olney's most prominent citizens, and this record would be incomplete without a sketch of his life. Born in Prince William County, Va., March 13, 1811, he was a son of Jacob and Margaret (King) Wilson. The father was a native of Pennsylvania, and the mother, who was a distant relative of Gen. Carney, was born in the Old Dominion. Their family numbered eight children, four sons and four daughters, but only two are now living: Mrs. Adeline Mars, and Mrs. William Shelby. Although born in the Keystone State, the father of our subject was reared in Virginia. In 1830, he went to White County, Ohio, where he purchased a large farm, operating it for many years. His death occurred in 1851, when past the age of three-score years and ten. He was a Scotch Presbyterian. His father had come to this country from Scotland, but his mother was a Holland-Dutch lady. Chief Justice Wilson, of Illinois, was a member of the family and a cousin of our subject.
Mr. Wilson, whose name heads this record, spent his boyhood days upon a farm in Virginia, and acquired his early education in the old-fashioned log schoolhouse. He was about eighteen years of age when his parents came to Illinois. He remained on the farm until about twenty-four years of age, when he went to Carmi, and studied law under Judge Wilson, who was then Circuit Judge. In 1840, he was admitted to the Bar, and the following year came to Olney and began practice. He was elected the first Circuit Clerk of Richland County, which in 1841 was separated from Clay and Lawrence Counties. The first term of court was held in the home of Benjamin Bogart, and the jury sat out of doors under a tree, for the house contained only one room. The next term was held in a log cabin which had been built for a Methodist Church and was also used for a schoolhouse. About forty years later the present handsome court house was built, and Mr." Wilson wrote the papers that were put in the corner-stones of both structures and on both occasions delivered the dedicatory address. He was a constant attendant in court at Olney for fifty years, and his face was more familiar to lawyers and judges than that of any other attendant thereon.
Our subject was also the first Mayor of Olney, and the first brick sidewalk of the city was laid during his administration. He practiced law all this time and had considerable to do with locating the Peoria, Decatur & Evansville Railroad here. he published a newspaper in Olney in 1847, which he bought from Mr. Cox, and at different times was editor of other papers, while to some of the St. Louis and other leading newspapers of the country he was a frequent contributor.
On the 31st of March, 1842, Mr. Wilson married Miss Harriet Powers, daughter of Asahel and Sophia (Lynde) Powers. The Powers family was originally from Ireland, and for generations back the eldest son was called Asahel. The grandfather of Mrs. Wilson was a soldier in the Revolutionary War, was promoted to the rank of Captain, and later became Major. By profession he was a lawyer, but in the latter part of his life he followed farming. The maternal grandfather of Mrs. Wilson was also a Revolutionary soldier. Her father and mother were the parents of eight children, three sons and five daughters, of whom four are now living: Jane, wife of Nelson Cobleigh; Nancy, wife of Dr. O. George; Mrs. Harriet Wilson and Frank. Asahel and George, the two eldest, Caroline, the fourth child, and Marthaette, the seventh child, are now deceased. The father of this family was a portrait-painter and was a cousin to the celebrated artist, Hiram Powers. He painted his own portrait from memory, by looking in a mirror and then turning away to paint. His daughter says that the likeness is a perfect one. Mr. Powers was a soldier in the War of 1812. His death occurred in 1844, and his wife, who survived him twenty-eight years, passed away in 1872, at the age of eighty-one.
Eight children were born unto Mr. and Mrs. Wilson, but William, John M., Margaret and Frederick are now deceased. Alice is the widow of William Ferryman, who died in 1890, leaving a son, Frederick, fourteen years of age; Philip married Agnes Shultz and they have one child, Elmer Lawrence. Ida is the wife of Rosso Titlow.
In his early manhood, Mr. Wilson was a Presbyterian, but a few years before his death he identified himself with the Swedenborgian Church, just organized in Olney, he becoming one of its first members. In politics, he was a stanch Republican from the organization of the party. He was a public-spirited and progressive citizen, manifesting a commendable interest in everything pertaining to the welfare of the community. A good and kindhearted man, he was generous almost to a fault. The part he performed in the upbuilding of Olney will never be forgotten. He was among its founders, and his name and memory should be perpetuated in its history.
[Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p.525 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
ROBERT B. WITCHER, attorney and master in chancery, was born in Upshur County, Texas, April 15, 1855, and is one of three living children born to Benjamin W. and Sarah (Bledsoe) Witcher, natives of Georgia. Benjamin W. married in his native State where he was brought up, and some three years after removed to Texas and engaged in cotton planting until he died, September 3, 1863. He was a Mason. His wife died January 31, 1860, a member of the Baptist Church. Robert B. was well educated in the common schools and Drury College at Springfield, Mo., graduating there in 1876. At that time prizes were offered for oratory, and he drew the first prize. After graduation, Mr. Witcher went to Saint Joseph, Mo., where he was employed on the Saint Joseph Gazette, the oldest paper in the State. In April, 1877, he came to Olney, and entered the office of James P. Robinson as a law student, and in 1879 was admitted to practice by the Supreme Bench, in the courts of Illinois. He has since been practicing here with good success. In January, 1882, Mr. Witeher was appointed Master in Chancery for Richland County, and was reappointed in 1883, and is still filling that office. He belongs to Marmion Lodge, No. 52, K. of P., and is a Democrat. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
ROBERT B. WITCHER, of Olney, a prominent representative of the Bar of Richland County, comes from the far South. He is native of Upshur County, Tex., his birth having there occurred on the 15th of April, 1855. His paternal ancestors for a number of generations were Virginians, and his grandfather was a native of that State. His father, however, Benjamin W. Witcher, was a native of the State of Georgia, and there grew to manhood and married Sarah Bledsoe. He was a planter by occupation. In 1855, a short time before the birth of their son, the parents removed to Texas, locating in Upshur County 7 . Neither survived this removal long. The mother was called to her final home in about the year 1858, and the death of the father occurred in September, 1860. He was again married after the death of his first wife. Our subject and his two sisters were then left to the care of a stepmother, who later married again, and in 1869 an uncle went to Texas for the children and took them back with him to his home in Georgia, but the stepparents soon afterward removed to Florence, Ind., and there the children joined them. On leaving that State the family took up their residence in Springfield, Mo.
While living in Springfield Mr. Witcher of this sketch received excellent educational advantages, pursuing a course of study in Drury College, where he spent five years, graduating from that institution in 1876. On the completion of his college course, he went to St. Joseph, Mo., and was employed in the office of the Gazette, a newspaper of that city, as a compositor, having previously learned the printer's trade. Hi? coming to Olney dates from April, 1877. On his arrival in Richland County he entered upon the study of law with James P. Robinson, and in 1879 was admitted by the Supreme Bench to practice in the courts of Illinois, which work he has since followed.
In 1886, Mr. Witcher was married in Pana, Christian County, Ill., to Miss Bertha Kitchell. Her father, Col. Edward Kitchell, was one of three brothers, who were prominent in the history of Richland County. He won the title while commanding the Ninety-eighth Regiment of Illinois Volunteers during the War of the Rebellion. His death occurred in 1869. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Witcher have been born two children, a son and daughter: Alice and Robert Kitchell.
Mr. Witcher being left without parents at an early age, was, in a measure at least, thrown upon his own resources when but a boy. Learning the trade of a compositor, he was thereby enabled to earn the means to secure an education and to pursue the study of his profession. By earnest application to his profession he has obtained, and justly so, a prominent place in the legal fraternity of southern Illinois. He is a worthy member of Marmion Lodge No. 52, K. P., and also belongs to the order of Modern Woodmen. In his political affiliations he is a Democrat. He served as District Attorney for Richland County from 1884 until 1888, and was Master in Chancery for eight years, beginning in 1882. The duties of both positions he discharged in a most satisfactory manner. Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p.590 - Submitted by Judy Edwards
JOHN WOLF was born in Cumberland County, Penn., January 31, 1817, and is the third of ten children born to John and Mary (Hawk) Wolf, both natives of the same county and of German descent. John, senior, was educated and married in his native State when, in 1831 he removed to Richland (now Ashland) County, Ohio. He bought a farm and resided there until his death in April, 1833. Mr. Wolf and wife were both members of the Lutheran Church. She lived upon the old place until 1850, when she went to live with her children. She died in February, 1866, living at the time with her daughter in Rome, in this county. John Wolf, Jr., received a common school education, and after his father's death, worked upon the old place until 1839, when he came to Illinois and entered 400 acres of land in the northern part of Sugar Ridge Prairie, in what is now Madison Township in Richland County. He erected a rude log cabin and improved a farm, then, in 1843, built a two story frame dwelling; the first in the neighborhood. In 1845 and 1846 while employed at farm work, he studied mathematics and surveying. Mr. Wolf was appointed County Assessor and in 1845 took the census of this county. He has also been Deputy Surveyor, and was elected in 1846 County Surveyor, being re-elected in 1848. In 1849 Mr. Wolf, in company with eleven others made the overland journey to California, experiencing great hardships in the undertaking. They arrived in Sacramento August 8, 1849. Mr. Wolf returned to this county in July, 1850, after having some success in work at the mines. In 1851 he was again elected County Surveyor, and in 1853 removed to Olney where he has lived ever since. In 1855 he was elected Sheriff of the county, and in 1857 was made to transcribe records of lands relating to Richland County, from records of Clay and Lawrence counties. In 1859 was made Circuit Clerk to fill a vacancy, was elected in 1860 to that office for four years, in 1857 was elected Secretary of the Grayville & Mattoon Railroad, now the P. G. & E. Railway, and held this office for more than twenty years. From 1865 until 1871 Mr. Wolf followed mercantile pursuits; since that he has not been actively engaged in business. He is a Director of the First National Bank, which he helped to organize in 1866, and in which he is a stockholder. Mr. Wolf has been twice married. In 1837 he wedded Margaret Snively, of Ashland County. To this union were born three children, all now living. Mrs. Wolf died on May 15, 1878, a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Wolf was next married on May 10,1880, to Mary E. Butz, of Monroe County, Penn., and who is a devout Lutheran. Mr.Wolf has since early youth been a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, is a Democrat, and after passing a very eventful and active life, is now respected and appreciated by the people, as a prominent citizen and pioneer of this county should be. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
HENRY J. B. WRIGHT, M. D., was born in Rush County, Ind., March 18, 1851, and is the youngest of the five children born to Ephraim and Polly (Buckley) Wright, natives, respectively, of Pennsylvania and New York. The father of Ephraim was for about twenty one years Judge of the Common Pleas Court of Fayette County, Ohio, and from early years until his death, in June, 1866, Ephraim was an itinerant minister of the Gospel. Henry J. B. Wright was reared on the home farm until twenty one years old, when he began the study of medicine with Dr. S. J. Voris, of Edinburgh, Ind. He took his first course of lectures at the Ohio Medical College, and graduated from the Cincinnati College of Medicine and Surgery in 1875. From 1876 until the fall of 1880, he practiced at Odin, Ill., and then attended Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, from which he graduated the next spring and came to Olney, where he has since been in successful practice, in partnership with Dr. Johnson. Both he and his partner hold appointments as examining surgeons of the Pension Department. In October, 1875, Dr. Wright married Kate E. Phillips, a native of Switzerland County, Ind., and to this union has been born one daughter, Hannah L. Mr. and Mrs. Wright are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and in politics he is a Republican. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]
W. M. WYATT, grocer, was born February 13, 1857, in Edwards County, Ill.; he is the son of Ballard S. and Avalina (Compton) Wyatt, the former a native of Ritchie County, W. Va., the latter a native of Wabash County, Ill. In 1855 his father emigrated to Edwards County and there engaged in farming pursuits till his death, which occurred in 1879 at the age of fifty-seven. He enlisted, in 1861, in Company G, Ninety-Eighth Illinois Infantry, served three years, and was mustered out as Commissary Sergeant. He also held the office of Constable several years in Edwards County.The subject of this sketch was reared on his father's farm ; at the age of twenty he had earned sufficient to buy a farm of eighty acres; this he improved and occupied for six years; he then sold this farm and in the fall of 1883 removed to Olney, and in company with Mr. Reinhardt opened a general grocery store. This partnership continued four months, when Mr. Wyatt bought the entire business. He carries a well selected stock worth about $1,200, and is doing a constantly increasing business. He was married May 29, 1879, to Allie Jenner, of Richland County. She died January 14, 1880, aged nineteen years. His second marriage, March 11, 1881, was to Sarah S. Chapman, of Richland County. One bright son gladdens their home. [Counties of Cumberland, Jasper and Richland, Illinois: Historical and Biographical; F.A. Battey & Co, 1884]