Isaac Black

From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 549-550, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  Isaac Black, a retired farmer, is probably the oldest settler of Schuyler county now living in Rushville; he has endured the trials and toil in a pioneer country, and is entitled to more than passing mention in this history. He is a native of Indiana, born in Dubois county, February 24, 1824, a son of Richard Black; the father was born in Mecklenburgh county, North Carolina, and was reared in that State; he removed thence to Hancock county, Kentucky, and lived there a few years; he then went to the Territory of Indiana, and was one of the pioneers of Dubois county. In 1826 he again started to the West, keeping close upon the frontier border. Accompanied by his wife and four children he made a journey to Illinois, and located in Schuyler county, where he purchased a claim to land entered by Willis O'Neil; this land is the present site of the city of Rushville. When the county was organized the claim was selected as the county seat, and so was taken from Mr. Black; he was afterward reimbursed in part. He then went five miles to the southwest, near the present site of Bethel Church, and there bought a tract of patent land, on which he erected a log cabin, sixteen feet square; there were a puncheon floor and stick-and-clay chimney. Later he made an addition to this domicile, and resided there until his death in 1853. The maiden name of his second wife was Elizabeth Fowler, a native of Jefferson county, Kentucky; she spent her last years with her son Isaac, the subject of this notice. The family reared by her consisted of eight children, two of whom were born of her husband's former marriage: Elizabeth, William, Isaac, Cecelia, John L., Richard S., Austin F. and Monroe.
  Isaac Black was an infant when his parents removed to this county; the country was thinly settled, and Indians still tarried in the vicinity of Rushville; game was abundant and the pioneers lived on wild turkeys, deer, and the product of their land; the children were clothed in homespun, woven by the mother's hands. Young Isaac attended the primitive pioneer schools during the winter season, and in the summer he lent valuable assistance in subduing the wild land and preparing the way for the coming generation; it is to such men that a deep debt of gratitude is owing from those who have reaped the benefits of those years of privation and labor. Until he was twenty years of age he remained with his parents, and then with his brother rented a farm near Littleton; they cultivated this land four years, and then Isaac Black purchased ninety acres in Woodstock township; there he lived two years, and in 1850 sold it, purchasing a tract in Bainbridge township. He was very successful in all his undertakings, made profitable investments, and secured 450 acres of as choice land as lies within the borders of the county. He lived on his farm until 1889, when he retired to Rushville, where he leads a quiet, contented life.
  In 1848 he was united in marriage to Cynthia A. Edmonston, a daughter of Enoch Edmonston, who located in Schuyler county in 1831; he became prominently identified with public affairs, and served tow terms as Sheriff of the county; he was also County Treasurer and Assessor; his wife's maiden name was Susan Allen. Mr. and Mrs. Black are the parents of eight children: Susan, Emily, Sarah E., George M., James P., Enoch, Flora A., Elvira and E. Louisa. George M. Black has represented Bainbridge township on the County Board of Supervisors. He has been a loyal citizen, always giving a liberal support to worthy movements and to those enterprises tending to benefit the general public.

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