SMITH GIBSON, a well-known citizen and substantial agriculturist, residing on section 31, Denver Township, has for more than forty years lived in Richland County, and has been prominently identified with its growth and upbuilding. He is widely and favorably known throughout its borders, and we therefore feel assured that this record of his life will prove of interest to many of our readers. He was born in Braxton County, W. Va., January 24, 1824, and his grandfather, Nicholas Gibson, was a native of the Old Dominion. At the age of eight years the latter was taken captive by the Indians and held by them until sixteen years of age. They pierced his ears and nose, and at length sold him to the white settlers for a barrel of whisky. He served his country in the Revolutionary War, and spent his last days in Illinois.
James Gibson, the father of our subject, was born and reared in Virginia, and became a bricklayer. At the age of eighteen he was united in marriage with Nancy Smith, whose father was a native of Ireland and her mother of Germany. Her death occurred in the Old Dominion, and he then wedded Patience Ochiltree. Emigrating to Illinois, they located on the farm which is now the home of our subject, and in a log cabin on the wild prairie they began life in true pioneer style. Both are now deceased, Mr. Gibson dying at the age of sixty-six years. He was a Democrat in politics, and a faithful and consistent member of the Protestant Methodist Church. There were ten children born of the first marriage: Catherine and Elmira, who died in Virginia; Mary, who is living in Nebraska; Amy, who was married and died in Clay County, Ill.; Smith, of this sketch; Elijah, who is living near the old home in Virginia; Emily, who died in that Stale; Permelia, who died in Richland County; Temperance, who is living in the Old Dominion; and Mason, who died in Montana.
Upon a farm, Smith Gibson passed the days of his boyhood and youth. He acquired a good education and at the age of twenty began teaching school, which profession he followed for one winter after coming to Illinois. On attaining his majority, he embarked in farming, and four years later emigrated to Illinois, casting in his lot with the early settlers of Richland County, which has since been the scene of his labors. He first purchased and improved one hundred and sixty acres of Government land, but now owns a fine farm of two hundred and thirteen acres, well equipped with a good home and all the accessories of a model farm, he also cleared a nice farm in Clay County, which he gave to his sons. During the war, he bought and shipped cattle. From a financial standpoint his life has been one of success, and though he started out empty-handed, by determined effort and enterprise he overcame the difficulties in his path, surmounted the obstacles and worked his way upward to a position of affluence.
Mr. Gibson was married April 16, 1854, to Miss Emily J. Stanley, daughter of H. 15. and Susan Stanley, who removed from Kentucky to Clay County, Ill. Their daughter was born in the former State. The children born of this union are: Asa, who married Adeline Gard, and is a farmer of Wayne County; and Albert, who wedded Cornelia Dewhirst, and operates a farm adjoining the old homestead. They also reared Helen Huford, a niece of Mr. Gibson, who is now the wife of Alex O. Buford, who is in the Advocate office in Olney, Ill.
The parents and their children are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the family is one of prominence in the community. Mr. Gibson has given liberally of his means to the support of the church, and never withholds his aid from any worthy enterprise calculated to prove of public benefit, but has always refused office. He has faithfully discharged his duties of citizenship and is one of the leading townsmen of this locality. He well deserves representation in the history of his adopted county, and with pleasure we present this brief record of a well-spent life to our readers. [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.428 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
JOHN FRITSCHLE, who is engaged in general farming on section 30, Claremont Township, has been a resident of Richland County since 1839. Almost his entire life has here been passed, his parents coming to Illinois during his infancy. He was born in Stark County, Ohio, August 25, 1839, and is of German descent. His father, Jacob Fritschle, was born in Germany, and during his childhood crossed the Atlantic, becoming one of the pioneers of the Buckeye State. He there grew to manhood and married Lydia Stafey, a native of Ohio, and with his family came to Richland County in the year above mentioned, locating in Olney Township. From the Government he entered a small tract of land, upon which not an improvement had been made, but turning the first furrow upon it, he extended its development until it became a rich and fertile tract. He also added to it by additional purchase until he had cleared and improved a farm of one hundred and seventy-five acres, and another of three hundred acres, he became very well-to-do, and is numbered among the prominent citizens of the community in which he has so long made his home. He is still living on the old homestead, but has now retired from farm labor, having reached the advanced age of eighty years. The mother of our subject died in 1850, after which Mr. Fritschle was again married, but his second wife was called to her final rest in September, 1892.
In a family of five sons and five daughters, of whom four sons and three daughters are yet living, John Fritschle is the eldest. The days of his boyhood and youth were passed upon his father's farm in this county, and in the schools of the neighborhood he acquired his education, but his privileges in that direction were very limited. He aided his father and to him gave the benefit of his services until twenty-two years of age, when he began farming for himself and settled upon the place which is now his home. It then comprised one hundred and sixty acres of wild land, but month by month saw an additional amount placed under the plow, and in the course of time the entire tract was transformed into rich and fertile fields. He labored early and late, his industrious nature finding no time for idleness. His first home was a log cabin, in which he lived for many years, but it has long since given way to a neat and substantial frame residence. There are good barns and outbuildings, the latest improved machinery, an orchard and other accessories, which indicate the practical and progressive spirit of the owner. By additional purchases from time to time, he has also extended the boundaries of his farm, until it now comprises two hundred and ten acres of good land.
Mr. Fritschle was married in this county to Miss Lydia Kalrider, daughter of George Kalrider, and by their union they have become the parents of eight children: Priscilla, wife of Samuel Burger, of Jasper County; Lucinda, wife of Asa Cotterell, of Richland County; Daniel, Peter, Susie, George, Fred and Esther. The last, a bright little maiden of five summers, completes the family.
Mr. Fritschle cast his first Presidential vote for James Buchanan in 1856, but has since supported the Republican party , and is a warm advocate of its principles. He served for six years as a member of the School Board, but has never sought or desired the honors or emoluments of public office. Himself and wife hold membership with the Lutheran Church, and in the community where they have so long made their home have a wide circle of warm friends, who esteem them highly for their many excellencies of character. Few have longer been residents of this community than our subject, who for fifty-five years has been an eye-witness of the growth and development of Richland County, and for a long period has aided in its development and progress. His memory goes back to the time when it was a sparsely settled region, unorganized as yet into a county, and he has seen it take its place among the leading counties of southern Illinois.
[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.430 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
JOHN GALLAGHER, one of the honored pioneers of Richland County, residing on section 1, Decker Township, is a native of the Emerald Isle. He was born in County West Meath in 1830, and is a son of James and Elizabeth (Riley) Gallagher. The father followed farming throughout his life and died in his native land, but the mother crossed the Atlantic. Her death occurred in Richland County, and she was buried in Gallagher Cemetery.
The subject of this sketch bade adieu to his old home and emigrated to America when nineteen years of age. The vessel in which he sailed dropped anchor in the harbor of New Orleans after a voyage of seven weeks and three days. Mr. Gallagher then started for Evansville, Ind., but the boat on which he was going up the river got aground and the passengers were all put ashore in a tobacco field. Finally reaching his destination, for sixteen months our subject remained in Evansville, after which he went to Ohio, where he spent a year. On the expiration of that period, he started for Texas, but again stopped in Evansville, Ind., and there remained until January, 1854, when he came to Illinois. He found Richland County, especially this locality, almost a forest. There were no fences between his place and Noble, and the work of progress and civilization seemed scarcely begun. He bought eighty acres of land and a log house, and has since here made his home. As his financial resources increased, he extended the boundaries of his farm until it now comprises two hundred acres .of good land, highly cultivated and well improved. He now carries on general farming.
On the 1st of October, 1858, Mr. Gallagher was joined in wedlock with Miss Matilda Maxfield, a native of Wabash County, Ill. She died March 26, 1877, and her remains were interred in Gallagher Cemetery. The children born of that union were James M., a merchant and Postmaster of Gallagher, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work; Annie, wife of Valentine Wyatt, who resides on the old homestead; and John, who is still with his father.
Mr. Gallagher is recognized as an enterprising and public-spirited citizen. For twelve years he served as Justice of the Peace, and has also filled the office of School Trustee. He cast his first vote for James Buchanan, and has since affiliated with the Democracy. We see in him a self-made man, who began life empty-handed. By determination and energy, however, he has overcome the difficulties in his path and secured for himself a comfortable competence. (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.430 - Submitted by Judy Edwards)
HENRY YELCH, who carries on general farming on section 35, Bonpas Township, is a leading agriculturist of Richland County, and one of the enterprising and progressive citizens of the community in which he makes his home. He does all in his power to promote those interests calculated to advance the general welfare or educational, social or moral interests. The cause of education finds in him a warm friend, and we thus see that our subject justly deserves the high regard in which he is held.
Mr. Yelch is a native son of Illinois, having been born in Cumberland County May 18, 1844. His father, George Yelch, was a native of Pennsylvania, and was of German descent. After his marriage he removed to Ohio, where he followed farming for a few years, and in 1840 came to Illinois. In 1843, he settled in Cumberland County, where he bought raw land, which he transformed into a good farm. Having there resided for twenty years, he sold out and took up his residence in Olney, where he passed his remaining days, his death occurring in August, 1873. He lies buried in Olney Cemetery. His wife was called to her final rest June 29, 1887, and was interred by the side of her husband. A beautiful monument has been erected to their memory.
Our subject is one of a family of four sons and five daughters who grew to mature years. The days of his boyhood and youth were passed in the county of his nativity, and in its public schools he acquired a good education. About 1864, he came to Richland County, and, renting land, embarked in farming. In 1869, he located upon the place which has since been his home. He first purchased an eighty-acre tract of timberland, and clearing away the trees, plowed and planted the ground, built a small house and log stable, and made other primitive improvements, but as the years have passed he has developed one of the finest farms in the community, comprising one hundred and sixty acres of valuable land, under a high state of cultivation. The home is a neat and pleasant residence, there is a good orchard and outbuildings, and the thrifty appearance of the place indicates his careful supervision.
In 1875, Mr. Yelch was united in marriage with Miss Caroline, daughter of Henry Stadge, a substantial farmer and honored pioneer of Claremont Township. Five children were born unto them: George William, Charles Edward, Arthur Frederick and Pearlie. John C., a son of a former marriage, is now living in Olney.
Mr. and Mrs. Yelch hold membership with the Free Methodist Church. In his political views he was former a Republican, but on account of his temperance principles he has of late years been identified with the Prohibition party. He has never sought or desired public office, preferring to devote his entire time and attention to his business interests, in which he has met with good success. He is well known in Olney and Richland County, and the upright life which he has led has gained him many warm friends and made him worthy of a place in the history of the community in which he has so long resided.
[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.431 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
CHARLES WETZEL, who carries on general farming on sections 13 and 24, Bonpas Township, Richland County, has the honor of being a native of this State. He was born in Logan Township, Lawrence County, August 10, 1851, and is a son of Henry and Wilhelmina (Boden) Wetzel. His parents were both natives of Germany. The father, who was a cooper by trade, came to America about 1830, and located in Pittsburgh, Pa. On leaving the Keystone State he went to Evansville, Ind., and about 1835 settled in Lawrence County, Ill., on a farm. There he met and married Miss Boden, a daughter of Herman Boden. They became the parents of eight children, but four died in infancy. Those living ate: Charles, Henry, Lewis and Mrs. Josephine Furnouf. Henry is a live-stock dealer of Grayville, Ill., but the other three reside near the old homestead. The father of this family died in Lawrence County, April 15, 1862, and his wife, who survived him for a number of years, passed away May 31, 1881. Our subject received such educational advantages as the common schools afforded. His boyhood days were spent on the old homestead. His father died when Charles was ten years of age, and the lad then took charge of the farm, which he carried on until twenty years of age. He then began life for himself as a farmer, renting land for a few years, after which he purchased.
In the meantime Mr. Wetzel and Miss Sarah E. Wooden were united in marriage. She was born in Monroe County, Ind. Her father was one of the early settlers of Lawrence County, Ill., where their marriage was celebrated September 25, 1870. Unto them have been born the following children: Carrie J., now Mrs. J. O. Smith; Emma, Albert H., Charles and Everett F. The mother died April 15, 1881, and on the 12th of March, 1883, Mr. Wetzel married Annie Simmons, whose father was one of the pioneers of Richland County. Three children grace this union: Herman, Herbert and Mabel.
In 1873 our subject purchased forty acres of land, a part of his present farm, of which twenty acres were cleared, and a log cabin had been built thereon. He has since purchased an additional tract of eighty acres adjoining, and now has one hundred acres under cultivation. He has a fine, thrifty orchard of two acres, his farm is fenced and upon it are good buildings and other improvements, which indicate the thrift and enterprise of the owner, and stand as monuments to his industry.
In politics Mr. Wetzel is a Democrat, and his first Presidential vote was cast for Horace Greeley. His wife is a member of the Christian Church. He has been called upon to fill various official positions, serving for one year as Township Collector, for two years as Supervisor, and for three years as School Director. He is now serving his second term as Trustee, and his second term as Assessor. The duties of his office he has discharged with promptness and fidelity, and he is recognized as one of the progressive and public-spirited citizens of the community in which he makes his home.
[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.431 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
ELIAS C. WARD, who owns a good farm of one hundred and sixty acres on section 11, German Township, has been a resident of Richland County since January, 1852, and is therefore numbered among its early settlers. He claims Ohio as the State of his nativity, his birth having occurred in Licking County, February 10, 1823. His grandfather, .Jonas Ward, emigrated from Virginia, and settled in Marietta, Ohio, in 17116. He was accompanied by Capt. Jonas Ward, the father of our subject, whose birth occurred in the Old Dominion, and who was then a small lad. He was reared to maturity in the Buckeye State, and when a young man went to Licking County, where he married Elizabeth Deweese, a native of Virginia, and a daughter of Thomas Deweese, a pioneer settler of Licking County. Capt. Ward there opened up a farm and engaged in agricultural pursuits. He was a soldier in the War of 1812, and held a Captain's commission. His father had been one of the Revolutionary heroes. In 1847, Capt. Jonas Ward removed to Crawford County, Ill., and after several years went to Story County, Iowa, where he and his wife spent the remainder of their days. Her death occurred in 1870, and Mr. Ward passed away in 1874.
The family of this worthy couple numbered four sons and two daughters, who arrived at years of maturity. Tartus M., the eldest, is a retired farmer of Washington County, Iowa; Josiah S., after a few years in Iowa, removed to Norton County, Kan., where his death occurred; Dr. Jonas L., now deceased, was a physician of Jersey County, Ill.; Electa P. is the wife of W. R. Doolittle, of Story County, Iowa; and Jerusha Elvira is the wife of Dr. Park, of Jersey County, Ill.
We now take up the personal history of our subject, who grew to manhood in the county of his nativity, and acquired his education in its public schools. Desiring to try his fortune in the West, he went to Crawford County, Ill., in 1843, and later to Rails County, Mo., after which he proceeded to Ft. Scott, Kan. Subsequently he returned to Missouri, and a short time after secured a position on a steamboat on the Mississippi, and for three years followed boating. In 1846, he returned to his home in Ohio, where he remained a year, when with his father's family he again went to Crawford County, Ill. There he purchased one hundred and twenty acres of wild land, which he transformed into a good farm, and for two years kept "bachelor's hall."
In 1850, Mr. Ward returned to Licking County, Ohio, and on the 1st of September married Sarah Catherine, daughter of Isaac Seymour. She was born, reared and educated in Licking County. By their union they have four children, as follows: . Orel, now the wife of G. L. Jones, of Crawford County; Florence G., wife of E. Z. Jones, of Richland County; Clark S., who owns and operates one hundred and sixty acres of the old homestead; and Mary E., wife of J. A. Baker, of Crawford County. Mr. and Mrs. Ward also lost four children in early childhood.
After his marriage, our subject returned with his bride to his farm in Crawford County, and a year later came to Richland County, locating on his present farm in January, 1852. He entered three hundred and twenty acres of prairie land, and for a year they lived in a log cabin, but soon after built a substantial frame residence. They suffered many hardships and privations during the first years, but the land was new and rich and produced bountiful harvests of golden grain for the labor bestowed upon it. Mr. Ward's condition and surroundings began to improve from year to year and he now has one of the valuable and desirable farms of the community, under a high state of cultivation and supplied with all the accessories and equipments of a model farm.
Since casting his first Presidential vote for John C. Fremont in 1856, Mr. Ward has been a stalwart supporter of the men and measures of the Republican party. He was elected and served one term as Assessor of German Township, and for years has been a member of the School Board. In whatever position he has been called to fill, he has proved a faithful and capable officer, yet has never been an office-seeker, preferring to devote his time and attention to his business interests, in which he has met with signal success. (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.441 - Submitted by Judy Edwards)
R. T. FRY is the editor and publisher of the Olney Advocate, a leading Republican paper of Richland County, which was established by Wharf & Allison in 1883, and became the property of its present proprietor February 15, 1890. The Advocate is a nine-column paper, half home print, and is a stanch Republican journal, ably edited and printed in the best style of the art. Its present proprietor has enlarged the paper from a five-column quarto to its present size. The Advocate office is furnished with the latest improved presses, operated by steam power, and its facilities for doing all styles of job work are unexcelled in Richland County. The Advocate is enterprising and always to be depended upon to encourage and aid all worthy public enterprises. It has a county circulation of about twelve hundred.
Mr. Fry, the popular editor, is a native of southern Illinois, having been born in Edwards County, December 22, 1854. He is a son of Joseph and Nancy (Kenner) Fry. His father was born in Knox County, Ohio, in 1820, and is of German and Irish ancestry. The mother of our subject was born in Princeton, Gibson County, Ind., in 1823. They removed to Edwards County, Ill., about 1850, and to Richland County in 1865. Mr. Fry is a farmer by occupation, and with his wife is now residing in Olney Township, Richland County. In early life he was a Whig, but has been a Republican since the organization of that party. He and his wife are consistent members of the Christian Church.
Our subject was reared upon a farm and received a common-school education. At the age of sixteen he began teaching, and was so employed until 1881. He then went upon the road as a commercial traveler, and devoted his energies to that line of business, principally in Iowa, until 1890 when he purchased the Advocate and assumed business and editorial management. In October, 1891, he was appointed Postmaster at Olney, an on the confirmation of the appointment by the Senate on the 16th of December following, he entered upon the discharge of the duties of the office. It is no flattery or idle compliment to Mr. Fry say of him that under his management the Olney Post office has become the model office of southern Illinois, if not of the State, outside of the few larger cities. His corps of lady clerks are prompt courteous and exact in discharge of duty, and the patrons of the office feel that it is a pleasure rather than an irksome duty for the clerks to Wart o: them. It is the unanimous verdict of the Olney public that Mr. Fry has given entire satisfaction: in the management of the office.
Our subject has taken a warm interest in horticulture, and through the columns of his paper has done much to encourage the planting of orchard He has done what many writers on this subject have not done: he has given a practical demonstration of the correctness of his theories by planting large orchard, which is now in successful bearing, He has fifty-five acres set out with Ben Davis apple in which a large portion of the trees are eight yea old, and the remainder three. It is one of the finest young orchards in the county, and could be readily sold for $10,000. No doubt through his writing's and successful example he has been instrumental in having several thousand acres in Richland County planted in apples.
On the 2d of September, 1877, Mr. Fry was married, in Richland County, to Miss Catherine V. Glathart, who was born in this county, and is a daughter of John Glathart. Three children have been born of their union, two sons and a daughter: Edward K., born in Clay City; and Ernest G; and Ethel, natives of Olney. Mr. and Mrs. Fry are members of the Christian Church, and are people of prominence in the community, in whose social circles they hold an enviable position. Mr. Fry is a Knight-Templar Mason, holding membership with Olney Lodge No. 140, A. F. & A. M.; Richland Chapter No. 38, R. A. M.; and Gorin Commandery, K. T., together with Salaam Temple, A. A. O. N. M. ?., and Olney Lodge No. 95, 1. O. M. A. [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.443]
COL. JOHN LYNCH, of Olney, was born in what was then a part of Lawrence County but is now the township of Olney, Richland County, November 8, 1831. His father, William Lynch, was born near the city of Dublin, Ireland, was reared on the Emerald Isle and there acquired a good education. In his younger days he was for several years a book-keeper for a London mercantile firm, and for some time represented the interests of the house at Cape Town, whence he came to the United States. He located in eastern Illinois about 1820 and there met his future wife, then Mrs. Shields. Her maiden name was Ann Bullard. She was born in Rowan County, N. C., near the city of Salisbury, May 20, 1798, and was a daughter of John Bullard. His father was an Englishman by birth. It was related of him that, having been bound out to learn the trade of a wheelwright, he became dissatisfied, ran away and went to sea and in due time became a resident of South Carolina. Later he went to North Carolina, where he lived until his death. These events occurred before the War of the Revolution. His only son, John Bullard, served in the war for the independence of the Colonies. He was but a boy when the war began, and his father having died previous to that time, he lived at home, assisting in the care of the family. A party of Tories, scouring the country, called at his mother's house, and although he was then but a boy of fourteen years they captured him and compelled him to accompany them. By the kindness and sympathy of one of his captors, however, he was allowed to escape, and concealed himself in the woods near his home, where he was supplied with food by his mother. He thus remained hidden until such a time as he could join Gen. Marion's forces, which he soon did. He participated in the defense of Ft. Moultrie against the British fleet and witnessed the gallant and historical act of Sergt. Jasper, who, when the flag was shot away by the British, sprang over the parapet and, seizing the colors, restored them to their place on the fort.
After the war Mr. Bullard settled down in his native State, where he remained until 1812, when, on account of his opposition to slavery, he resolved to remove from under its influence. Accordingly he emigrated with his family to the Territory of Indiana. The year following he had the misfortune to lose his life, dying of a prevailing disease, called by the pioneers the "cold plague," probably the disease known to-day as congestive chills. Two sons died about the same time of the same disease. Five sons and three daughters survived the parents, but all have now passed from the scenes of this life. The last survivor was Amos Bullard, who died in Texas about 1888. He was formerly a well-known citizen of Olney, and was Commissioner of Richland County at the time the city was laid out. In fact, all the family became well-known citizens.
The mother of our subject was born in 1798, and in 1817 was married to her first husband, Thomas Shields, who at his death left the mother with five children, only one of whom is now living, Mrs. Mary Gibbs, of California. After the death of her husband, Mrs. Shields left her home in Missouri and came to Lawrence County, Ill. In 1830 she became the wife of Mr. Lynch, who died five years later. Col. Lynch and a daughter are the children of this marriage. The. latter is now Mrs. Margaret Brewer, of Olney. In November, 1839, Mrs. Lynch became the wife of Bryant Higgins. Her death occurred in the autumn of 1876, in her seventy-ninth year.
Col. Lynch was born and reared in what is now Richland County. There were no public schools then established here and he was fourteen years of age before he learned to read. A subscription school for a short time during the year furnished the educational facilities of those days on the frontier, and nine months of schooling distributed through several years constituted his advantages for an education. He was reared to the occupation of farming.
On the 14th of March, 1858, Col. Lynch married Miss Catherine Clubb, who died November 21, 1860. On the 20th of January, 1862, he was married to Miss Margaret Nelson, daughter of John and Elsie (Maglone) Nelson, both of Irish ancestry. The father, who was born in Virginia, removed with his parents to South Carolina, thence to Tennessee, and in 1821 went to Posey County, Ind. Me was twice married and had three children by the first union. Mrs. Lynch is one of the eight children born of the second marriage. Of these there were two sons and six daughters. The eleven children of John Nelson all grew to mature years, but one son and two daughters are now deceased. The father died February 13, 1872, and the mother November 21, 1873.
Col. Lynch was among the first to respond to the call of the President for volunteers to suppress the rebellion. On the 19th of April, 1861, he organized a company for three months' service, which became Company D of the Eighth Illinois Infantry, and of this company he was made Captain. The regiment was commanded by Col. Oglesby, afterward General, and later Governor of Illinois. Col. Lynch had of course received no military training and he soon found that his want of knowledge of military matters was likely to stand in the way of his success as an officer. He accordingly did what probably no other officer of his rank in the State of Illinois did during the war.
He resigned his commission as Captain after commanding the company one month, and voluntarily took a place in the ranks, where he served during the remainder of his term. After the regiment was mustered out he assisted in raising Company E of the Sixth Illinois Cavalry, and on its organization was made First Lieutenant and was regularly promoted through all the grades, as Captain, Major and Lieutenant-Colonel, until he became Colonel of the regiment, which he commanded for over a year. He was mustered out with that rank in November, 1865. He thus rose from the ranks by meritorious conduct, skill and bravery on the field of battle. His regiment joined Gen. Sherman's army in Memphis in August, 1862, and took part in the Central Mississippi campaign under Gen. Grant in the winter of 1862-63, going into winter quarters at La Grange, Tenn., January 13, of the latter year. On the 17th of April following he started on Grierson's famous raid from La Grange to Baton Rouge, La. This was the most famous cavalry raid made during the war on either side, not excepting Morgan's raid into Ohio soon after, which was doubtless prompted by the success of Grierson's raid and in retaliation therefore. But while the former was a complete success the Morgan raid was a total failure, resulting in the destruction or capture of nearly the entire Confederate force. Grierson's command rode nearly through the Stale of Mississippi, traveling eight hundred and thirty miles in sixteen and a-half days, an average of fifty miles per day. During the raid seven battles were fought with the Confederates, who vainly sought to capture the Yankee troopers. Instead, our army destroyed on the route thirteen miles of the Vicksburg, Jackson, Brandon & Southern Railroad, and one hundred miles of the New Orleans, Jackson & Great Northern Railway. In this memorable raid the Union forces sustained a loss of but seventeen men. On their arrival they reported to Gen. Banks and took part in the siege of Port Hudson. The Mississippi being now open, the command returned by that route to Memphis, from which place it was engaged in scouting during the fall and early winter in western Tennessee and northern Mississippi, in the course of which the regiment, which was in advance of the main force, met a. large force of rebels under Gen. Steven U. Lee at Moscow, Tenn., and was badly cut up. On the 11th of February the command started under Gen. William S. Smith to form a junction with Gen. W. T. Sherman at Meridian, Miss., but was driven back from West Point, Miss.
Soon after the regiment re-enlisted as veterans and in the spring of 1864 reported for duty and was engaged in scouting until October, when it was ordered to join Gen. Thomas near Florence, Ala. The troops fell back with Thomas to Nashville, taking part in the meantime in the battle of Franklin against the confederates under Gen. Forest. They took part in the battle of Nashville, assisting in the defeat of Gen. Hood, and driving the Confederate forces across the Tennessee River. They went into camp at Gravelly Springs, Ala., in January, 1865, and in February crossed the river to Eastport, Miss., and scouted through that part of the country until the surrender of Gen. Lee, when they were mustered out of the United States service, November 5, 1865, at Sol ma, Ala., being discharged from Camp Butler in the latter part of the same month.
Although the Colonel participated in a large number of engagements and was so long exposed to the dangers of war, he escaped without wounds, though many times he did so narrowly. His horse was shot from under him and the scabbard of his sword was hit a number of times by the bullets of the enemy. On another occasion he was thrown from his horse, receiving severe injuries.
By his first marriage, Col. Lynch became the father of one child, William, who died in his third year. By his present union have been born three children. John, born January 13, 1865, is now engaged in the practice of law in Olney; Frank, born October 10, 1868, is also a lawyer, resides in Chicago and is Assistant State's Attorney; Tinnie, the only daughter, is at home. She was graduated from the High School of Olney in the Class of '92. In early life Col. Lynch was a Democrat and voted for Stephen A. Douglas in 1860, but in 1864, while at home on a leave of absence during the war, he supported Abraham Lincoln. He is Past Commander of Eli Howyer Post No. 92, G. A. R.; and Companion of the Military Order of the Loyal Legion of Illinois. His cordial and genial manner and sterling worth have made Col. Lynch a popular and respected citizen. Although his advantages for education in his boyhood days were exceedingly limited, he has ever been a great reader and is well informed on the general issues of the day. This great fact, combined with his large experience, makes him an interesting and instructive companion. Honored as a soldier, he is alike esteemed as a citizen. [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.46 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
JOSEPH J. VAN MATRE, who carries on general farming on section 5, Bon pas Township, was born near Middleton, Ind., July 28, 1845. He is a son of Joseph D. and Naomi Van Matre. His father was a native of Kentucky, and comes of an old Holland family. His mother was born in Fayette County, Ind., and her maiden name was also Van Matre. She now resides in Calhoun, Richland County, Ill. The parents of our subject came to this county in 1863, locating on a farm near Olney, where the father died December 20, 1874. Their children are: William W.; John, deceased; Joseph J.; Peter L.; Elizabeth M.; Maria E.; and Margaret J., wife of J. Dodds.
Upon his father's farm in Indiana, the subject of this sketch spent the days of his boyhood and youth. On the 1st of August, 1863, at the age of eighteen years, he enlisted for the late war as member of Company G, Seventh Indiana Cavalry. He was employed mostly on scouting and skirmish duty, and took part in the disastrous Sturgis raid. At Brice's Cross Roads, he had a desperate hand-to-hand encounter with a Confederate officer. He finally dispatched his adversary with the butt of his gun, after both of their weapons had missed fire, and thus saved his life. He also took part in Smith's raid through Mississippi, and participated in the expedition which drove Gen. Price out of Missouri. After pursuing the latter through that State and Kansas, and into the Indian Territory, during which time they traveled about twenty-f?? hundred miles, the troops went to Louisville, Ky. After the war, this regiment was employed in an expedition in Texas, under the noted Gen. Custer.
Mr. Van Matre received his final discharge in Indianapolis, March 15, 1866, and returning to the North, joined his parents in Richland County. On the 9th of November, 1869, he was united in marriage with Miss Sarah A. Jackson, a native of Highland County, Ohio, and a daughter of Jacob Jackson. They have no children of their own, but are rearing an adopted son, Harry Michael Divine.
In 1882 Mr. Van Matre purchased his present farm of eighty acres, which he has greatly improved, and in 1892 he built his present residence, a neat and attractive cottage, pleasantly located. He is an enterprising and industrious farmer, and ranks among the substantial agriculturists of the community . In politics Mr. Van Matre was formerly a Democrat, but now belongs to the People's party. He has served his township as Supervisor and Assessor, and has ever been a public-spirited and progressive citizen, who does all in his power to promote the best interests of the community. He has taken an active part in the Farmers' Mutual Benefit Association movement, and is a member of Ed Kitchell Post No. 662, G. A. R.
[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.446 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
THE OLNEY PAVING BRICK AND TILE COMPANY was incorporated in the spring of 1891. Its officers are J. N. Homer, President; John Wolf, Vice-President; and Cliff Shy, Secretary. The works were erected in 1891 and are situated in the southwestern part of the city. Employment is furnished to from twenty-five to thirty men, and the annual output is about three million brick and tile. This company supplies the local market and ships by rail to neighboring towns. Their supply of clay of fine quality is large and is constantly increasing, in consequence of which the company finds it necessary to enlarge its works and intends doing the same the coming season. The products of the factory have been fully tested and have proved to be of the very best quality. In addition to manufacturing, this company does an extensive business as contractors in laying pavements. [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.448 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
HENRY G. MORRIS, the present State's Attorney of Richland County and a lawyer of Olney, was elected to his office in November, 1892, as the successor of Jasper I. Moutray. His life record is as follows: He was born on the 9th of December, 1856, in Savannah, Ga., and in his early childhood attended the common schools. With the restlessness of boyhood, he ran away from home at the age of eleven years and went to sea, following a life on the ocean wave for several years, during which time he visited the four quarters of the globe. At length he abandoned that mode of living and settled in Rochester, N. Y., -whence he removed to the West in 1876. He went first to Casey, Clark County, Ill., to settle up some business, and while engaged in that transaction made the acquaintance of many of the leading men of the vicinity, who persuaded him to make that point his home.
For some years our subject worked on a newspaper, the Casey Times, and in 1879 was elected Police Magistrate of Casey. So well did he fill the office that at the expiration of his term he was re-elected. In 1880 he established the Casey Advocate, and continued its editor and proprietor until 1883, when he sold out. Desiring to complete his law studies, he disposed of that business. In 1888 he accepted a position in the United States mail service on the Chicago & Ohio River Railroad, running from Olney to Sidell in Vermilion County, and remained until April, 1889, when the Harrison administration removed him on account of the active part he had taken in the Presidential election of the preceding year. In 1888, on his appointment to the mail service, he removed to Olney, where he has since resided. In January, 1881, Mr. Morris was united in marriage with Miss Katherine Gordon, of Madison County, Ind., and three children have been born of their union: Sidney C., Lena and Finest K.
The family circle still remains unbroken. In politics Mr. Morris has always been an advanced Democrat, and has been an active worker in the party since he attained his majority. He was a member of the Central Committee of Clark County for ten years, often serving as Chairman of the party conventions, and was a trusted leader of the Democratic party in that county. In the Democratic primary of 1890, he having in the meantime removed to Olney, Mr. Morris was nominated for County Judge over W. L. Shelby by a large majority, but was defeated in the fall election by a small plurality by Judge T. A. Fritchey, the Republican nominee, on account of the defection of some of Shelby's adherents. In 1891 he was admitted to the Bar, standing nearly at the head of a large class, and the following year was nominated without opposition by the Democratic party for States Attorney and elected to that office. Mr. Morris has been Chairman of the Democratic Central Committee of Richland County since the spring of 1892, and to his skillful management and untiring zeal the success of the entire ticket in the campaign of 1892 is largely attributed.
On taking up his residence in Richland County, Mr. Morris established a real-estate and insurance business, and soon worked up a good trade. He is a far-sighted business man, energetic and able, and his success in life is due to his own enterprise and labor. As a legal practitioner he stands in the front rank. He has not only done much for his party, but has also labored for the interests of the city in which he makes his home, and is regarded as one of the public-spirited, prominent and valued citizens of Richland County. [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.452 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
N. R. HUFFMAN, a public-spirited and progressive citizen, follows farming on section 16, Denver Township. He is prominent in public affairs and ever aids his party in promoting the best interests of Richland County. He was born in Decatur County, Ind., October 23, 1835, and is a son of Jacob H. and Hannah (Raynes) Huffman. His father was born about eleven miles from Wheeling, W. Va., in 1796, and was there reared to manhood upon a farm, receiving a limited education. He learned the carpenter's and wagonmaker's trade, and in Virginia he was married March 1, 1831, to Hannah, daughter of John and Lucy Raynes. Her father was born in Maine, and she was also a native of the Pine Tree State, making her home there until twelve years of age. Mr. and Mrs. Huffman removed to Allegany City, from there to Ohio, and later to Decatur County, Ind., locating in St. Omar, where he followed his trade. Subsequently he spent three years in Rush County, Ind., and seven years in Shelby County. Before his marriage he had traveled in thirteen States. Before the time of steamers he would go to New Orleans on flatboats and return on foot. He was in the Crescent City just before the Tearless Battle.
It was in 1856 that Mr. Huffman came to Illinois, and he died in Richland County in 1864. His wife was born in 1804, and though she made her home with our subject after her husband's death, she died while visiting in Coles County, November 7, 1880. They both belonged to the Methodist Episcopal Church for years and were zealous workers in its interests. In their family were two sons and three daughters: John, who was born in Allegany City, and died in infancy; Lucy Ann and Julia Ann (twins), both deceased; N. R., of this sketch; and Elizabeth, also deceased.
Mr. Huffman of this sketch is the only surviving member of the family. Until his tenth year he remained in St. Omar. He acquired a good education, which he has supplemented through his reading and business experience. He remained with his parents throughout their lives, caring for them in their last years. He worked on the farm and aided his father in the carpenter shop, but since he has attained to man's estate he has followed agricultural pursuits. He now owns two hundred and two acres of good land, upon which is a comfortable home, barns and outbuildings. The place is well improved audits neat and thrifty appearance indicates the owner to be a practical and progressive farmer.
On the 26th of February, 1862, in Crawford County, Ill., Mr. Huffman married Margaret Jane, daughter of Thomas and Sarah Ogden, of Ohio. The lady was born in Rush County, Ind., and with her parents came to this State. Ten children were born of their union, and the family circle yet remains unbroken by the hand of Death. Sarah C., the eldest, is the wife of Albert Stacey, of Piatt County, Ill.; Jacob S. aids in the operation of the home farm; Hannah is the wife of William Johnson, of Saunders County, Neb.; Una D., Georgiana, Alice, Hayes, Dee O., Annetta and Cora complete the family.
The parents and the eldest children are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Huffman and his wife take an active part in church work and contribute liberally to its support. The cause of education also finds in him a friend, and he gives his aid to all worthy enterprises. With the Farmers' Mutual Benefit Association he holds membership. He cast his first Presidential vote for Lincoln and supported the Republican party until 1892, when he voted for Gen. Weaver. Mr. Huffman has made his way in the world unaided. When he started out in life for himself $300 would have bought all his worldly possessions. He has met with obstacles, but by enterprise and a determined will he has overcome the difficulties in his path, and by his methodical and systematic business methods and straightforward dealing he has achieved a comfortable competence and is numbered among the well-to do citizens of Denver Township. [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.453 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
MARTIN D. FOSTER, M. D., a well-known medical practitioner and a member of the firm of Foster & Watkins, physicians and surgeons of Olney, has been in continuous and successful practice in this city since October, 1882. Dr. Foster is a native of Illinois, his birth having occurred in Edwards County on the 3d of September, 1861. His parents, Blashel and Emeline C. (Hauser) Foster, were early settlers of Edwards County. The father was born in southern Indiana and the mother in North Carolina. They came to Illinois in youth, were married in Edwards County, and there made their home for many years. In 1888 they removed to a farm near Salem, Ore., where they now reside. Mr. Foster is a farmer by occupation and has followed that pursuit throughout his entire life. He and his wife are consistent members of the Christian Church and are highly respected citizens in the community in which they make their home.
Martin D. Foster, whose name heads this sketch, spent his boyhood days quietly upon his father's farm and early became familiar with the work which accompanies such a life. In the district schools he began his education, which was later supplemented by a course in Eureka College, a school of the Christian Church, in Eureka, Ill. His medical education was received in the Eclectic Medical Institute in Cincinnati, Ohio, from which he was graduated in the Class of '82. On securing the degree of M. D., he came to Olney the following October and opened an office. Since establishing practice at this place he has continued it with marked success up to the present time, covering a period of eleven consecutive years.
Dr. Foster has been twice married. In Shelbyville, Ill., on the 20th of April, 1887, he led to the marriage altar Miss Alice, daughter of Samuel Igo. After a short married life she died, July 28, 1889. On the 27th of October, 1891, Dr. Foster was married in Olney. The lady who now bears his name was in her maidenhood Lula B. Cliffe. She was born in Olney and is a daughter of the Rev. William and Martha T. Cliffe, who were early settlers of this place. The Doctor and his wife hold a high position in social circles and have made many friends throughout the community.
Dr. Foster was reared under the auspices of the Christian Church. He exercises his right of franchise in support of the Democracy. For four years he was a member of the District Pension Board under President Cleveland's first administration, and is a member of the Illinois State Eclectic Medical Society, of which he is the First Vice-President. He also belongs to the National Eclectic Medical Society. The Doctor is connected with several secret and benevolent societies. He is a Knight-Templar Mason, belongs to all the Masonic bodies of Olney, and is the present eminent Commander of Gorin Commandery No. 14, K. T.; and also is Illustrious Potentate of the Mystic Shrine. In the Knights of Pythias fraternity he has attained to the Uniformed Rank and is Past Chancellor of his lodge. He is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of America and the Select Knights of America.
In June, 1889, Dr. Foster formed the existing partnership with Dr. H. T. Watkins, under the firm name of Foster & Watkins. The Doctor has been eminently successful in his profession and has built up a large and lucrative practice. He is thoroughly read in medicine and surgery, and keeps well abreast of the times in a general knowledge of the latest discoveries in the line of his profession. He possesses quick perceptive faculties, and is rapid and correct in diagnosis. Genial and cordial in manner, he carries with him into the sick room a cheerful, healthful, magnetic influence that in some cases is more helpful than medicine. [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.454 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
WILLIAM PHILLIPS, a prosperous and representative farmer of Claremont Township, residing on section 31, is numbered among the honored pioneers of Richland County, dating his residence in the community from 18-10. He is a native of the Buckeye State, his birth having occurred in Stark County July 13, 1836. His father, David Phillips, Sr., was born and reared in Pennsylvania, and when a young man went to Ohio, locating in Stark County, where he met and married Miss Sarah Hosier, a native of that State. Mr. Phillips there engaged in farming and also carried on a wagon shop for several years. Thinking to better his financial condition by a removal Westward, he came to Richland County, Ill., in 1840, and chose Claremont Township as the scene of his future labors. Here he purchased a tract of forty acres of land, which he improved. Subsequently he entered land from the Government, and, purchasing more, opened up a farm of more than two hundred acres. He became one of the prosperous and substantial agriculturists to the community as the result of his good management and well-directed efforts. He reared his family and spent the remainder of his life on the old homestead, where his death occurred in January, 1872. His wife died only a few days previous, in December, 1871.
William Phillips, whose name heads this record, is the second in order of birth in a family of four sons and four daughters who grew to mature years, while three sons and three daughters are yet living. He was a child of only four years when with his parents he came to Illinois. He spent his youth upon the old home farm, and in the common schools of the neighborhood acquired a good English education. Under the parental roof he remained until after he attained his majority, and then purchased forty acres of land, wholly unimproved. This he cleared and fenced, built a log cabin upon it, and devoted himself assiduously to its further cultivation. Subsequently he purchased forty acres of the old homestead, together with ten acres of timberland, so that he now has ninety acres of good land. The log house has long since been replaced by a substantial frame residence, a good barn has been built, an orchard set out, and other improvements made, which add greatly to the value of the place.
On the 25th of October, 1860, Mr. Phillips was united in marriage with Miss Margaret, daughter of Philip Steffey, one of the honored pioneers of Richland County. She was born in Stark County, Ohio, and when a little maiden of four years came with her parents to Illinois. The union of our subject and his wife has been blessed with two children: Sarah Ann, wife of Peter Garber, a farmer of German Township; and John T., at home. They also have an adopted daughter, Elva Carter, who has made her home with them since eight years of age.
The parents hold membership with the Lutheran Church. In politics Mr. Phillips is a Democrat, having supported that party since he cast his first ballot for lion. Stephen A. Douglas in 1860. He is a friend to all moral, educational and social interests, and has served as a member of the School Board for fifteen consecutive years, during which time he has done all in his power toward promoting the standard of the schools in this community. Both Mr. and Mrs. Phillips have spent almost their entire lives in Richland County, and are widely and favorably known. He commenced life for himself a young man empty-handed, but as the result of his own labor and enterprise and with the assistance of his estimable wife, he has accumulated a comfortable competency and has a valuable farm and good home. [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.456 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
CALEB HEINDSELMAN, who carries on general farming on section 15, Denver Township, Richland County, was born in the county of -the same name in Ohio, the date of his birth being December 11, 1838. His parents were Caleb and Catherine (Threiler) Heindselman. The former was born in Baden, Germany, in 1800, and the latter in Alsace, France, in 1797. In the Fatherland they were married and there two children were born unto them. In 1829 they took passage on a sailing-vessel at Bremen, which at length dropped anchor in the harbor of New York, from which city they made their way to Richland County, Ohio. Nine years later they came to Richland County, Ill., and Mr. Heindselman followed his trade of a potter. He died in Olney Township in 1875, and his wife passed away the following year. They were members of the Lutheran Church, and he was a life-long supporter of the Democratic party. The Heindselman family numbered the following children: Catherine, wife of J. F. Schlichmyer, of Olney Township, Richland County; Jacob, who died in Kansas; Dolly, who died at the age of twenty-one; Elizabeth, deceased, wife of Jacob Gissler; John, whose death was caused by entering an old well full of poisonous gas; Caleb, of this sketch; George, a soldier in the late war, who now follows farming in Olney Township; Caroline, who died at the age of thirteen; and Margaret, wife of Henry Black, of Decker Township.
Our subject was only about a year old when the family came to Illinois. They made the journey by team, arriving at their destination after two weeks of travel. The county was then in its primitive condition. Large numbers of deer were seen, and all kind of lesser game were to be had in abundance. -The nearest neighbor was four miles distant, and there were no markets hi this vicinity. The family endured many of the hardships and privations of frontier life. Our subject received no educational privileges, and when very young began to aid in clearing the land. However, there are many pleasant memories connected with those pioneer days, and enjoyments unknown except on the frontier were indulged in.
On attaining to man's estate, Mr. Heindselman began working as a farm hand and was thus employed for three years. He enlisted August 15, 1862, in Olney, as a member of Company G, Ninety-eighth Illinois Infantry, under Capt. F. A. John and Col. Funckhauser. The regiment was drilled at Centralia, and while proceeding South met with a railroad accident at Bridgeport, Ill. Our subject took part in a skirmish at Snow Hill, but the first regular engagement in which he participated was at the battle of Chickamauga. This was followed by the battles of Farmington and Chattanooga, the Atlanta campaign, the battles of Resaca, Dalton, Big Shanty, Selma and Wilson's raid. The Ninety eighth Regiment, noted for its bravery and faithful service, lost heavily, returning with only four hundred men. Mr. Heindselman remained with it until the close of the war, serving as Corporal and acting as scout much of the time. He received an honorable discharge in 1865, and on the 7th of July reached home.
After his return, our subject rented land and followed farming in Olney Township two years. There, on the 7th of November, 1867, he wedded Miss Margaret E. Graves, daughter of Leonard Graves, who came from Indiana to Richland County in 1865. Me was a farmer by occupation. His wife bore the maiden name of Eliza Rexroat. Mrs. Heindselman was born in Kentucky, and when a year old was taken to Indiana, whence she came to Illinois at the age of seventeen. Eight children were born of their union: Tycent L., a blacksmith and machinist; Arthur, at home; John, who is clerking in Chicago; Gertie; Leslie C.; Myrtie Maud; Aden O. and Lyman L. The sons now operate the farm. The children have been well educated and the family is one of which the parents are justly proud.
Mr. Heindselman 's first purchase of land comprised eighty acres in Olney Township, partially improved, upon which he made his home until January, 1888, when he removed to his present farm. He now owns two hundred and fifty-four acres of as fine land as can be found in the county, with all the equipments of a model farm, a fine residence, good outbuildings and fifteen hundred fruit trees. He is also successfully engaged in stock-raising. It is no flattery to say that our subject is one of the leading and prominent agriculturists of the community. Socially, he is a member of Eli Bowyer Post, G. A. R., of Olney. He has long been interested in schools, and the cause of education finds in him a warm friend, who does much for its advancement. Himself and wife are members of the Christian Church, to the support of which they contribute liberally, taking an active interest in its upbuilding. These well-known and worthy people certainly deserve representation in the history of the county which has so long been their home. [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.457 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
ROBERT C. LOUGH, who for many years has been identified with the history of Richland County, is numbered among its leading agriculturists, and resides on section 8, Denver Township. He was born in Braxton, W. Va., November 21, 1820, and comes of good old Revolutionary stock. His grandfather, George Lough, served under Washington throughout the struggle for independence. He died in Pendleton County, W. Va. The maternal grandfather of our subject, with his mother and sister, was made a prisoner by the Indians, and was thus held for eight years.
Peter Lough, father of Robert, was born and reared in Pendleton County, W. Va., and in the Old Dominion married Prudence Gibson, who was of Scotch-Irish descent. In 1839, he started for Illinois, floating down the Ohio River on a flatboat to Cincinnati, then going by steamboat to Mt. Vernon, Ind., and thence by team to Edwards County, Ill., where he arrived on the 18th of May. Four years later he removed to Clay County, and entered land from the Government, upon which he made his home until his death, which occurred in 1860, at the age of sixty-nine years. His wife then came to live with our subject. He tenderly cared for her during her remaining days. Mr. Lough was a successful business man and acquired a good property. Both he and his wife were lifelong members of the Methodist Church, took an active part in church work, and he was for many years a local preacher. He was the founder of the Salem Church in Edwards County, and also took part in establishing a church in this locality. In politics, he was a Whig, and in 1860 voted for Abraham Lincoln.
With the exception of one who died in infancy, the fifteen children of the Lough family grew to mature years. They are Mrs. Juliet Rice, of Kansas; Mrs. Temperance Hocking, of Bone Gap, Ill.; Mrs. Louisa Michaels, deceased; Charles, a farmer of Kansas; Nicholas, a farmer of Belleville, Ill.; Mrs. Lydia Phillips, deceased; John, who was in the Twenty-first Illinois Infantry, and went with Sherman on the march to the sea, but is now deceased; Peter M., who was a member of the same regiment, and is now living in Clay County; Laverna, wife of S. T. Ulm, of Oregon; Martha Ann, deceased, wife of Addison Dalzell; Mary, who became the wife of Mr. Ireland, and died in Kansas; George, who was also one of the boys in blue, and is now living in Kansas; and Mrs. Prudence Adams, deceased.
Mr. Lough, our subject, was nineteen years of age when life family left Virginia. His educational advantages were meagre, but he received unlimited training in farm labor. On attaining to man's estate, he left home to earn his own livelihood, and was married in Edwards County, Ill., to Mary Ann Courtrecht, daughter of John C. and Mary (Burriss) Courtrecht. Her father was a native of New York, and came of an old Holland family. Mrs. Lough was born in Edwards County, and proved to her husband a true helpmate. They began their domestic life upon a rented farm, and in January, 1845, our subject secured a squatter's claim in Richland County, for which he traded two three-year-old colts, two yoke of oxen, a wagon and harness, and two log chains. When he came into possession of his present farm, comprising one hundred and sixty acres of land, it was covered with tall prairie grass, and was entirely unimproved. He turned the first furrow upon it, and in course of time plowed and planted it all. His first home was a log cabin with a puncheon floor. He had considerable trouble in getting help in raising his cabin, because he would not furnish whisky, being a man of strong temperance principles. His, however, has been a prosperous career, and at one time he owned six hundred acres of land, but he has since sold four hundred acres.
In 1868, Mrs. Lough died, and Mr. Lough afterward married Jennie Bradshaw, a native of Wayne County, Ill. The children born of the first marriage are Benjamin P., who was a member of the Fifth Illinois Cavalry, and died near Vicksburg during the service; Samantha, who died at the age of two years; Mattie, who became the wife of James H. Delzell, and died leaving two children; Norman A., who was educated in the public schools and in Lebanon, Ill., then studied law with Judge Hay wood, of Olney, married Allie Conklin, and is now practicing in Chicago.
Mr. Lough now superintends the management of his farm, but is practically living a retired life. For almost half a century he has resided in this county, and his history is inseparably connecter with that of the community . He has always given his support to those enterprises calculated to prove of public benefit, and has served as Justice of the Peace and Assessor. Socially, he is a Royal Arch Mason, belonging to the Blue Lodge and Chapter of Olney. He and his wife are faithful and consistent members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, in which he is now serving as Trustee. For the past forty years he has been either Class-leader or Steward. This worthy couple are earnest workers in the Master's vineyard, and their lives, so well and worthily spent, are in harmony with their professions. Mr. Lough is a man of strong convictions, and when he believes himself to be in the right neither fear nor favor can alter his course. [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.458 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
SULLIVAN C. McCAULEY, a well-known general farmer and stock-dealer of Richland County, residing on section 29, Decker Township, was born on his father's farm two miles south of Noble, January 29, 1849. His grandfather, Joshua G. McCauley, was a native of Virginia, but removed to Kentucky and there followed farming throughout his entire life. Daniel McCauley, the father of our subject, was born in Jefferson County, Ky., November 5, 1802. He was a farmer, school teacher and lawyer, but gave his attention principally to agricultural pursuits. In 1836, he came to Illinois, locating in Richland County, which was then an almost unbroken wilderness. In what is now Decker Township he purchased three hundred and sixty acres of land, and in connection with its cultivation also followed school teaching. He was one of the honored pioneers of this locality and always bore his part in the work of upbuilding the best interests of the community. He served as Justice of the Peace, County Commissioner, School Treasurer, School Director, etc. He died April 9, 1886, at the age of eighty-three years. Mrs. McCauley still survives her husband and makes her home with her sons, William J. and Sullivan C. She was born in Baltimore, Md., in 1812, and bore the maiden name of Mary Ann Jeffery. She holds membership with the Methodist Episcopal Church. Her father, William Jeffery, was a native of Maryland, and probably was of English descent. He was a harness-maker and saddler most of his life, but spent some years at sea. In 1818, he removed to Louisville, Ky., and there died in 1848, at an advanced age. He was a soldier in the War of 1812.
In the McCauley family were eight sons and two daughters: Mary Jane, now deceased; Napoleon L., William J., Edward J. (deceased), Thomas J.; Sylvester J., who has also passed away; Richard N., Sarah A., Sullivan C., and Daniel W., deceased.
The work of operating and developing the McCauley farm was carried on by the two brothers, William and Sullivan, who were reared on the old homestead, the former having there lived fifty-six years, and the latter forty-four years. They were educated in the district schools and William engaged in teaching for a time. When the war broke out, he enlisted August 11, 1862, as n member of Company H, of the Ninety -eighth Illinois Regiment, which was afterwards mounted and was known as Wilder's Brigade. He served until March 3, 1863, when, on account of disability, he was honorably discharged.
William McCauley then returned to the farm and has since devoted his energies to its improvement. In March, 1873, he was united in marriage with Polly Ann Taylor, daughter of John Taylor, of Richland County, but his wife lived only three months. In political sentiment the brothers are both Republicans, and socially William is a member of Noble Post No. 252, G. A. R., while Sullivan holds membership with Noble Lodge No. 482, I. O. O. F.
The McCauley brothers have devoted their entire lives to agricultural pursuits and are ranked among the leading farmers of the county. The elder brother now controls two hundred acres of the homestead farm, and the younger one hundred and sixty. They are both men of good business ability, and their close attention to business and well-directed efforts have gained for them a comfortable competence. The McCauley homestead is one of the best in this locality.
[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.466 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
ISAAC S. WHITE, a representative citizen and influential farmer of Noble Township, Richland County, resides on section 33, where he owns a good farm. He has four hundred and twenty acres of valuable and arable land, and also a timber tract of forty acres. Upon the place are good buildings, well-kept fences, a forty-acre orchard, and all the improvements found upon a model farm, while the well-tilled fields indicate the care and supervision of an enterprising owner.
Mr. White was born in Hamilton County, Ohio, April 22, 1822. His paternal grandfather was born and reared in Pennsylvania, and married a lady from Maryland. He was of Dutch descent, and his wife was of Irish extraction. He served as a soldier in the French and Indian War, and was also one of the Revolutionary heroes. In 1793, he removed from Pennsylvania to Ohio on a flatboat. At that time there were only three houses in Cincinnati. His last days were spent in Dearborn County, Ind., where he located when there were only two families there besides his own. They had some trouble with the Indians and lived in a block house. His death occurred in 1842, at the extreme old age of ninety-three years. In politics he was a Whig, and his wife was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Otha White, father of our subject, was the eighth in a family of eleven children. He was born m a pioneer log cabin in Indiana, October 8, 1800, and was early inured to the arduous labors of developing new land. In 1824, he removed to Decatur County, and in the midst of the forest hewed out a farm. He was married April 5, 1821, to Lucy Eggleston, who was born in New York, and there remained until eighteen years of age. Her family was of Dutch lineage. Mr. White was a successful farmer and secured a good home. He died from the effects of an injury in October, 1850, at the age of fifty years, and his wife, whose birth occurred in 1802, passed away on the old homestead in 1864. Both were members of the Baptist Church, and he took an active part in political affairs, voting the Whig ticket.
Their family numbered six sons and four daughters. Russell died in Missouri; Giles, who is now living in Greensburg, Ind., served for three years in the late war, was Captain of a company of the Sixty-eighth Indiana Infantry, and was held as a prisoner by the rebels for some time; Otha died at the age of twenty years, while on a flatboat going to New Orleans; Abigail, wife of Jarnes Fortune, resides in Greensburg, Ind.; Mrs. Susan Fortune resides in the same place, her husband having died in the army; Eliphalet is a farmer of Lawrence County, Ill.; John died at the age of twenty years; Lucy is the wife of Isaac Knox, who lives near Ottumwa, Iowa; and Amy, her twin sister, died at the age of two years.
In the usual manner of farmer lads, Isaac S. White spent his boyhood days. He attended the subscription schools for about three months in the year, and the remainder of the time worked on the farm. He remained at home until he had attained his majority, when, in November, 1839, in Decatur County, he married Miss Louisa Remain, who was born in the same neighborhood and went to the same school as her husband. She is a daughter of Reuben and Elizabeth (Hardy) Tremain, formerly of New York. After his marriage, Mr. White purchased forty acres of land and built a hewed-log cabin. He subsequently bought and sold land in that county, where he made his home until November, 1876, when he removed to Indianapolis. In 1877, after having engaged in the real-estate business in that city for eight months, he came to Illinois and purchased his present farm.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. White have been born eight children: Otha, who died in Champaign County, Ill., in the spring of 1893; Louisa Ellen, wife of William T. Osman, a farmer of Decatur County, Ind.; Giles, a successful farmer of Davis County, Ind.; Gilbert L., who is section foreman on the railroad and makes his home in McDonough County, Ill.; Caroline, wife of William Creech; Elizabeth 8., wife of George Pflaum, a farmer of Richland County; Flora Belle, wife of Frederick Odell, an agriculturist of this county; and Alice, who married Charles B. Adams, baggage-master at the Ohio & Mississippi depot in Olney. The children were all born on the old home farm in Indiana, and acquired good educations, which fitted them for the practical and responsible duties of life.
For forty years Mr. and Mrs. White have been members of the Baptist Church. He is now Deacon of the church in Noble, and to its support he contributes liberally. For twenty-one successive years he served as Justice of the Peace in Indiana. He has also been Assessor, Collector and Supervisor, and his duties have ever been discharged with promptness and fidelity. He cast his first Presidential vote for Henry Clay, and was a Whig until 1856, since which time he has affiliated with the Democracy. A man of sterling worth and strict integrity, he has the high regard of all who know him. His enterprise, industry and good management have made his business career a successful one, and he has risen from a humble position to one of wealth and affluence. [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.467 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
HENRY H. KOERTGE is one of the representative farmers of Madison Township, Richland County. He owns and operates two hundred and forty acres of land on section 18, and has one of the fine farms of the community. His life record is as follows: A Prussian by birth, he was born near Magdeburg, September 8, 1848, and is a son of Charles and Dorothy (Smith) Koertge. In his native land he received a common-school education.
At the age of nineteen years, our subject bade good-bye to home and friends and went to Bremen, where he took passage on a Westward-bound steamship. The voyage was a stormy and tempestuous one, but after sixteen days the vessel dropped anchor in the harbor of New York, and Mr. Koertge landed on the shores of the New World. He made his way directly to Edwards County, Ill., where he began life as a farm laborer.
The next year he was joined by his parents. The father was not long permitted to enjoy his new home, however, his death occurring two years later, in Bon pas Township. The mother survived him some years and was called to her final home in February, 1890. Their remains were interred in the cemetery at West Salem, Ill.
In 1869, Mr. Koertge of this sketch removed to Olney, and on the 21st of December of the same year he was united in marriage with Rosinsa Wiss, daughter of Conrad Wiss, of German Township, Richland County 7 . She was born in that township, where her parents settled at a very early day. They now reside in Olney. After two years spent in that city, Mr. Koertge removed to German Township, where he operated a rented farm for four years. In 1877 he came to Madison Township and bought forty acres of land, the nucleus of his present farm. It was a raw tract, but the first season he built a house and cleared two acres. By perseverance and industry he soon cleared the remainder and placed the entire amount under cultivation. As his financial resources were increased, he extended the boundaries of his farm until it comprises two hundred and forty acres, of which one hundred and forty yield to him a golden tribute in return for the care he bestows upon it. The remaining one hundred acres are pasture and timberland. Mr. Koertge carries on general farming and is also engaged in breeding thoroughbred Shorthorn cattle. He has good improvements upon his place, and in 1892 built a fine barn, 30x50, with twenty-foot posts.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Koertge have been born eight children, namely: Elizabeth; Lydia, wife of William Zimmerman; Herman, Charles, Lora, Wesley, Hulda and John. The parents and their eldest son are members of the Free-Will Baptist Church.
In 1873 Mr. Koertge met with a painful accident, caused by his team running away, which disabled him for several months. He has also had other misfortunes and difficulties, but by determined will and energy he has overcome the obstacles in his path and worked his way upward to a position of affluence. He cast his first Presidential vote for R. B. Hayes, but for the past eight years has supported the Prohibition party, being a warm advocate of the temperance cause. He has served as School Trustee and held other local offices. Public-spirited and progressive, he gives his aid to every interest calculated to benefit the community, and Richland County recognizes in him a valued citizen. [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.469 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
PHILIP RALING, proprietor of the National Hotel in Olney, the oldest and most popular hotel under continuous ownership in the city, is a well-known resident of Richland County. He has the genial and agreeable qualities of the old-time host, and has made his house a favorite with the traveling public, so that he receives a liberal patronage and is doing a good business. His life record is as follows: He was born in Hesse-Cassel, Germany, December 11, 1831, and is a son of Henry and Susanna (Sherer) Raling. His parents were born in the same country, and the maternal grandfather of our subject was one of the unfortunate Hessian soldiers who were sold by their Duke to the English Government to fight against the Americans in the War of the Revolution. He served in America throughout, that struggle, and at its close returned to his native land.
Philip Raling left home and kindred in 1846, at the age of fifteen years, and entirely alone, so far as family and friends were concerned, crossed the seas to America. He made the voyage from Bremen to New Orleans in a sailing-vessel, and was fifty-eight days upon the Atlantic. On reaching the Crescent City he pursued his way up the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers to Cincinnati, Ohio, where he arrived on the 24th of December, 1846. After a few weeks there spent he went to Indiana, locating in Brookville, where he remained for two years, after which he went to Cambridge City, Ind. On the 13th of January, 1853, he was married in Covington, Ky., to Miss Sarah Marinda Weaver, who was born in Allegheny County, Pa., and is a daughter of Samuel and Sarah Ann (Rogers) Weaver.
The parents were natives of Pennsylvania, and were of German descent, known as "Pennsylvania Dutch."
Mr. Raling and his wife made their home in Cambridge City, Ind., until 1857, when they removed to Johnson County, Kan., near Squiresville Post Office. There our subject took up a quarter section of Government land, which he improved and made into a good farm. He was doing well there and would have remained had not the nearness of his location to the Missouri border made it very uncomfortable, and at times dangerous, during the late Civil War. Raiding parties from both sides were frequent visitors, and it was almost impossible to keep any live stock, especially any good horses, so during the summer of 1864 Mr. Raling sold out and came to Olney, Ill. For the want of a house in town he was obliged to spend the winter in the country near by, but on June 1, 1865, moved to the city. The following year he built a hotel, which was called the Raling House, and engaged in hotel-keeping. Later he enlarged tire building, and in 1867 changed its name to the National. Subsequently he made important additions to the house, until at this writing it has thirty-three rooms. This hotel has now been carried on continuously by our subject for twenty-seven years. The National House is well furnished and is kept with extreme neatness, its table is good and it can boast the most accommodating and capable clerk, in the person of William E. Raling, to be found in the State.
Mr. and Mrs. Raling have had a family of four daughters and two sons, but their eldest, a son, died in infancy; Lizzie Tryphena aids her mother in the care of the hotel; Idora is the wife of George F. Montgomery, of Chicago; Mamie is the wife of T. H. Dunlap, of Nashville, Tenn.; Clara G. became Mrs. L. T. Reed, of Olney; and William Edward is the present efficient clerk of the National Hotel. In her religious views Mrs. Raling is a Presbyterian. Mr. Raling and daughter Lizzie are members of the New, or Swedenborgian, Church.
In politics, Mr. Raling is a Democrat, and has served eight years as a member of the Olney City Council. He was elected by both parties, and finally declined to accept the nomination for another term. Socially, he is a Knight-Templar Mason, a member of Olney Lodge No. 140, A. F. & A. M.; Richland Chapter No. 38, R. A. M.; and Gorin Commandery No. 14, K. T. He also belongs to the Council, and Olney Chapter No. 100, O. E. S., and has held official positions in all these bodies. Miss Lizzie Ruling is a member of Olney Chapter, O. E. S., of which she is Past Worthy Matron, and is also Past President of the Woman's Relief Corps. William E. is a member of Marmion Lodge No. 52, K. P., and is the present Secretary of the society.
Mr. Raling's hotel property includes eighty-six feet front on Whittle Avenue, by one hundred and twenty feet deep, in addition to which he owns two lots, 120x127 ft. In all these years which our subject has spent in Olney, he has always been known as an industrious, upright man, of good habits, enterprising and public-spirited, and a good citizen. He well deserves mention in this volume, and with pleasure we present this sketch of his life to our readers. [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.472 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
JOSIAH E. TAYLOR, a farmer and stock-raiser of Claremont Township, residing on section 6, well deserves representation in the history of Richland County, for he is not only one of her enterprising and progressive agriculturists, but is one of her native sons. He was born on his father's farm near Olney on the 1st of January, 1851. He is a son of Henry and Elizabeth (Doyle) Taylor, both of whom were natives of Virginia. In the Old Dominion the father followed farming, and from there emigrated to Ohio, and subsequently to Illinois. This was in 1840. He took up his residence in Richland County, and entered a tract of two hundred acres three miles northwest of Olney, now known as the Welty Place. There he cleared the land and opened up a farm, upon which he made his home throughout the remainder of his life. His wife died in 1853, after which he was a second time married. He was called to the home beyond in 1863.
Our subject lost his mother when only two years of age, and was left an orphan at the age of twelve. He then went to live with David D. Guston, with whom he remained for a year. It was in 1865 that he determined to seek a home elsewhere, and went to Denver, Colo., where he spent the six succeeding years of his life, employed in confectionery stores during the greater part of the time. He had had good educational advantages before going West, and his business experience has made him a well-informed man. Being thus early thrown upon his own resources, he also developed a self-reliance and force of character which have proven invaluable factors in his success in life. From Denver he went to Trinidad, Colo., where he engaged in stock-dealing for a period of six years. On the expiration of that period, he sold out, and in 1877 returned to Olney and spent a short time in visiting old friends in this community. In the spring of the same year, 1877, he again went West, this time becoming a resident of Coif ax County, N. M., where he purchased a ranch and engaged in stock business, being thus employed for more than six years, after which he again sold out and once more returned to the country of his nativity, in 1883. Purchasing a farm in Claremont Township of one hundred and seventy-five acres of improved land, he engaged in its cultivation in connection with stock-raising. Mr. Taylor has since sold off a part of that property, and has bought a forty-acre tract of timberland. He has also bought and sold several other pieces of property, but now owns one hundred and twenty acres of good farming land, four miles east of Olney. He has set out an orchard, built a neat and substantial residence, and otherwise greatly improved the place.
In November, 1881, in Macoupin County, Ill., Mr. Taylor was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Cotterell, a native of this State. She was born and reared in Richland County, and acquired her education in Olney. Her father, James Cotterell, was one of the honored pioneers of this locality. Three children grace their union, namely: Ethel M., Edna R. and Tressy. Mr. Taylor exercises his right of franchise in support of Democratic candidates in State and National elections, but in local politics is independent, casting his ballot for the man whom he thinks best qualified for the office. His wife is a member of the Claremont Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Taylor has served as a member of the School Board for three consecutive terms, and believes that the best interests of good citizenship are to be secured by the foundation of a good education. Starting out in life empty-handed, as he did, Mr. Taylor deserves great credit for his success in life. He has met with obstacles and difficulties, but with a determined effort and never-faltering purpose, he has overcome these, and with renewed strength, which always comes from conquering obstacles, he has pushed onward until he has gained a place, not only among the substantial, but also among the most highly respected, citizens of Richland County. [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), p479 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
JOSEPH OCHS, who since 1884 has been numbered among the agriculturists of Richland County, is now engaged in the operation of his home farm of one hundred and sixty acres, on section 7, German Township. He was born in Stark County, Ohio, on the 16th of May, 1842, and is of German descent, his grandfather, Valentine Ochs, and his father, John Ochs, having both been natives of Germany. Crossing the briny deep when the latter was a lad of twelve years, they became early settlers of Stark County. There John grew to manhood, and when he had arrived at years of maturity wedded Mary Weiler, his countrywoman. She had come with her father, Mathias Weiler, from the Fatherland to America during her early girlhood. After their marriage they lived upon a farm in the Buckeye State for several years, and in 1844 traveled Westward until they reached what is now Richland County, Ill. Mr. Ochs had previously been to Missouri, and there purchased land, but afterwards disposed of it. He here bought eighty acres, and from time to time added to that, until his possessions aggregated five hundred acres. There was a cabin upon his first purchase, and it became the home of the family for several years, but at length was replaced by a large and handsome residence. Other improvements were also made, and the homestead became one of the best and most desirable farms in the community. The father passed away in September, 1887, at the age of seventy-two years, respected by all who knew him, and his wife died in 1879, at the age of fifty-eight. They were buried in St. Joseph's Catholic Cemetery, and a marble monument marks their last resting-place.
Joseph Ochs is the second in order of birth in a family of seven sons and three daughters. With the exception of the youngest child, all grew to manhood and womanhood and were married. The eldest, D. J., died at his home in Jasper County; Mary is the wife of D. Ginder, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work; Henry operates a farm adjoining that of his brother; Frank is an agriculturist of Jasper County; Ambrose follows the same business in Jasper County; Theodore is a miller, living at Straight Creek, Jackson County, Kan; D. P. is engaged in agricultural pursuits in Jasper County; Elizabeth is the wife of Simon Schneider, of German Township; Josephine is in St. John's Hospital, in Springfield, Ill.
When a child of two years, our subject came with his parents to Illinois, and upon the old homestead passed the days of his youth in the usual manner of farmer lads. After attaining" his majority, he traveled through Missouri, Iowa, Indiana and Illinois, working at various employments at which he might earn an honest living, but engaged mostly in brick-laying and carpentering. Several years were passed in that way. In 1869, he returned, and was united in marriage in Jasper County with Anna, daughter of Paul Gumble. The lady is a native of Germany, but spent the greater part of her maidenhood in Richland County. After his marriage, Mr. Ochs purchased a farm in Fox Township, Jasper County, and operated it for twelve years. He then returned to the old home, taking care of his father and managing the farm. He has since sold his property in Jasper County, and, purchasing the interest of the other heirs, has succeeded to the ownership of the old homestead. This is a valuable and well-improved place, pleasantly located about nine miles from Olney.
Mr. Ochs is independent in local politics, but on questions of national importance votes with the Democratic party. By his first Presidential ballot he supported Gen. George B. McClellan in 1864. He has been a resident of the county for forty-nine long years, and is numbered among its honored early settlers. He has always borne his part in the work of public improvement, and the community recognizes in him a valued citizen.
In 1881, our subject was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, who died on the 8th of July, and was laid to rest in St. Marie's Catholic Cemetery of Jasper County, where a beautiful monument has been erected to her memory. They had a family of four children, Frances, Clara, Daniel and Paul, who are still under the parental roof. The father and his family are members of St. Joseph's Catholic Church. The Ochs household is the abode of hospitality, and the many friends of the family are always sure to receive a hearty welcome there, while the stranger and the needy are never turned empty-handed from the door. [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), p483 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
JESSE R. SHAFFER, who is engaged in general farming on section 34, Claremont Township, dates his residence in Rich land County from 1855. He was born in Franklin County, Ind., on the 9th of April, 1826, and is a son of John Shaffer, a native of Pennsylvania. The father, who was of German descent, was married in the Keystone State to Catherine Witmer, who was also a native of Pennsylvania, and soon afterward emigrated to Indiana, becoming a pioneer of Franklin County. In the midst of the forest he hewed out a farm, upon which he reared his family and spent the remainder of his life. He was a carpenter by trade, but followed agricultural pursuits for many years. His death occurred in 1837, when our subject was a lad of about twelve years. His wife long survived him, and passed away in 1883, at the very advanced age of ninety-five years. She was laid by his side in Springfield Cemetery, Franklin County, where a substantial monument marks their last resting-place.
Jesse Shaffer is one of a family of nine sons and two daughters, all of whom grew to mature years and. became heads of families. Five sons and two daughters are still living. The eldest, Jacob, is living retired in Decatur County, Ind.; Daniel is also retired and makes his home in the same county; Elizabeth, widow of Caleb Shearer, is a resident of Decatur County; Jesse is the next younger; Isaac makes his home in Illinois; Joseph is located in Franklin County, Ind., on the old homestead; and Mary Ann is the wife of Isaac Ward well.
The subject of this sketch spent the days of his boyhood and youth upon the old homestead farm in the county of his nativity, 'and in the schools of the neighborhood acquired a good education. He remained with his mother and aided her in carrying on the farm until he had attained his majority, when he started out in life for himself. To earn his livelihood he worked by the month as a farm hand for four years. Ere leaving his native county he was united in marriage, in 1854, with Miss Rachel Shirk, who was also born in Franklin County. They began their domestic life upon the farm there, but after a year came to Illinois, in 1855, locating in Richland County. The county was then but sparsely settled and bore little resemblance to the Richland County of to-day. Mr. Shaffer purchased land where he still resides, his farm being conveniently located about eight miles from Olney. He first bought one hundred and forty acres, of which about forty acres had been broken. The fall after his arrival his house and all its contents were destroyed by fire. This loss, added to the hardships and difficulties of pioneer life, made those first days very dreary, but his neighbors came to his assistance and helped him to build another home. His own indefatigable labors transformed the raw prairie into rich and fertile fields, and he now owns three hundred acres of valuable land, all under a high state of cultivation.
He has built a pleasant and comfortable residence and good outbuildings, planted an orchard, and made other improvement which add to the value and attractive appearance of the place.
Mr. Shaffer was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, who died in Indiana, leaving a daughter, Rebecca, who is now the wife of William Beard, a merchant of Claremont. Mr. Shaffer was again married, in Franklin County in the spring of 1855, the lady of his choice being Miss Martha, a daughter of William Cummins, of Franklin County. They have five children: William Henry, who is married and aids in the operation of the home farm; Frances, wife of James Partlon, of Daviess County, Ind.; Charles Elsworth, who is married and resides on the home farm; Luella and James Ora, who are still at home. The parents and the family are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Mr. Shaffer is identified with the Republican party, and cast his first Presidential vote for Abraham Lincoln. He has served as a member of the School Board, but has never been an office-seeker, preferring to devote his entire time and attention to his business interests. For thirty-eight long years he has resided in Richland County, and is numbered among its honored early settlers. We find in our subject a self-made man, who to his own efforts can attribute his success in life, as he started out empty-handed and has worked his way upward to a position among the substantial citizens of the community. m [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), p491 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
PHILIP WEST, a progressive and representative farmer of Richland County, residing on section 12, Noble Township, was born on the farm which is still his home, April 23, 1842. His father, Lewis West, was reared near Claremont, this county, and married Sarah Ann Phillips, whose girlhood days were spent in Olney Township. He was also a farmer by occupation.
His death occurred in August, 1842, about four years after his marriage. Mrs. West lived a widow six years and then became the wife of George Helsel. Her death occurred in Decker Township about 1873. Mr. and Mrs. West had two children, the sister of our subject being Eliza Ann, who was born April 27, 1840, and is now the wife of Robert Large. They removed to Kansas, but are now living in Christian County, Ill.
Since a lad of ten years, our subject has had to make his own way in the world, and whatever success he has achieved in life is therefore due to his own efforts. He worked as a farm hand in this State and in Indiana during his earlier years, and during his youth he saw much of the rough side of life. He had but limited school privileges, for his livelihood depended upon his continuous labors. In August, 1862, he enlisted for the late war in Olney, and was assigned to Company B, of the Ninety-eighth Illinois Infantry, under Capt. Marquis and Col. Funckhauser. The regiment was assembled at Centralia, and was ordered by rail to Louisville, Ky., but at Bridgeport, Ill., met with a wreck. Mr. West was taken sick at Castalian Springs, Tenn., and sent to Gallatin, where he was discharged on account of disability in January, 1863. He has never yet fully recovered from his army experience.
In 1865, Mr. West purchased forty acres of land, formerly belonging to his father's estate, upon which was a small log cabin and log stable. Of this, twenty acres had been cleared. He immediately began its further development and placed it under a high state of cultivation. From time to time, as his financial resources were increased, he extended the boundaries of his farm, until it now comprises one hundred and sixty acres of valuable land, which yields to him a golden tribute in return for his care and labor. The log house has long since been replaced by a frame structure, good barns have been built, and other improvements made which indicate the owner to be a practical and progressive farmer.
As a companion and helpmate on life's journey, Mr. West chose Miss Alice Slasor, daughter of C. and Sarah (Adams) Slasor. She was born in Ohio, and when a young lady came with her parents to Richland County. Their union, which was celebrated in Noble Township December 23, 1867, has been blessed with a family of nine children. Laura, the eldest, died in childhood; Charles, born December 19, 1870, was educated in the public schools of Olney, and now aids his father on the farm; Philip died in infancy; Demma died at the age of four years; Ida was born July 16, 1878; Lewis was born July 31, 1880; Lora, October 19, 1882; Alice, March 22, 1886; and Lottie. December 10, 1888.
Since casting his first Presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln in 1864, Mr. West has been a stanch advocate of the Republican party. He has served as School Director for twelve years, and the cause of education finds in him a warm friend. Socially, he is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, and himself and wife are members of the Christian Church. For over half a century his home has been in Richland County, and he has been prominently identified with its growth and upbuilding, taking a commendable interest in everything pertaining to its welfare. He is a man of sterling worth, and the honorable, upright life which he has led has gained for him an enviable position among his fellow-townsmen. [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. 498 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]
GODFREY SCHNEIDER, who carries on general farming on section 32, German Township, has been a resident of Richland County for more than half a century, the date of his settlement here being 1840. He is a prominent German citizen as well as a leading agriculturist. He was born in Baden, Germany, November 7, 1826, and is a son of Michael Schneider, who grew to manhood and was married in that country. With his family he emigrated to the New World in 1840, taking passage for New York on the "Havre de Grace, " a sailing-vessel, which made the voyage in thirty-eight days. The family made their way Westward to Canton, Ohio, and a few weeks later went to Louisville, Ky., where a brother of Mr. Schneider resided. In the fall of the same year they came to Illinois, locating in what is now Richland County. The father entered and purchased land in German Township, and for many years made his home upon the farm which he there developed. At length he sold out and spent his last days in the home of his son Godfrey, dying in 1866, at the advanced age of seventy years.
Our subject remained in the Fatherland until fourteen years of age, and during that period received good school privileges. With his parents he came to the United States, and under the parental roof he remained until he had attained his majority, when he started out in life for himself. As a companion and helpmate on life's journey he chose Rogina Halm, their marriage being celebrated in Vincennes, Ind., in 1848. They began their domestic life upon a farm of eighty acres, one-half of which Mr. Schneider obtained of his father, and the other half entered from the Government. He continued its operation until 1865, when .he sold and purchased his present farm, an improved place and one of the first settled in this part of the county, on the old stage road between Lawrence and Shelbyville. It was formerly owned by Jake May, who kept a post office and store here at a very early day and traded with the Indians. Mr. Schneider purchased one hundred and twenty acres, and afterwards bought an additional forty acre tract. He owned at one time three hundred and forty acres, but has given a considerable amount of this to his children. His farm is considered one of the best in the township, being well improved with all necessary buildings and under a high state of cultivation. The owner began life for himself empty-handed, but by his own labor, enterprise and industry he has acquired a valuable farm and a good home, and is today ranked among the substantial citizens of Richland County.
Ten children were born unto Mr. and Mrs. Schneider: Mary, wife of Martin Kocher; Catherine, wife of Peter Cooper; Rachel, wife of Joseph Ginter; Adelia, wife of Andrew Roth; Philomena, who married Jo Rennear; Louisa, wife of Jacob Rennear; Michael, Simon and Jacob, all of whom are married and follow farming in Richland County; and Jo, who aids in carrying on the home farm.
The parents and their children are all members of the Catholic Church. Mr. Schneider was formerly identified with the Democratic party, but of late years has been independent, supporting the candidate best qualified for the office. He has filled several official positions of honor and trust, has a number of times been elected Justice of the Peace, was Highway Commissioner several years, and School Treasurer for some time. His various duties he discharged with promptness and fidelity, proving a faithful and efficient officer. He has ever had the best interests of the community at heart, and has given his support to every enterprise calculated to promote the general welfare. [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.503 - Submitted by Judy Edwards]