Marcellus Marion Cleek
Biography

From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 403-404, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  Marcellus M. Cleek, resident of Camden, dating from September, 1836, he was born in Boone county, Kentucky, August 27, 1829. His father, Benjamin Cleek, was also born in Kentucky in 1800, and his father John Cleek was a native of Germany, where he married, and came to America, settling at Big Boone Springs, Boone county, Kentucky, where he was one of the pioneers. He engaged in the manufacture of salt and there passed his remaining days, dying at the age of eighty years. He had eight children: John, Benjamin, Jacob, Esau, Sarah, Margaret, Eliza and one other. Benjamin Cleek was the second child and he was raised a farmer, marrying in 1826 Martha Harris of Lexington, Kentucky, daughter of Richard Harris of the same State, who was killed in the Black Hawk war. In 1812 the father with his wife and four children came by boat to Frederick, Illinois, and from there to Rushville, settling on section 7, Camden township, where he purchased 160 acres of land and also entered about as much more. In 1844 the season was very wet and the following year there was so much sickness that he became dissatisfied with the country and so returned to his native State, although he did not sell his land. He remained in Kentucky seven years and then returned to Illinois, settling on his land where he died in 1867. His wife died in 1873. They had eleven children: John, deceased; Marcellus; M. M.; Samuel, deceased; Benjamin, farmer on part of the old home farm; Jacob of Camden; Richard, also on part of the old farm; Mary, deceased, wife of J. J. Yocum; Elizabeth, wife of Henry Price of Huntsville; Lovina, wife of J. J. Yocum of Chariton county, Missouri; Ann, wife of J. H. Hendricks of Camden township; and Martha, wife of Levi Welty, also of Camden township.
  Marcellus lived with his parents and on the return from Kentucky pursued the trade of carpenter, which he had learned in Kentucky. He did not return to Illinois until 1854. He continued his trade for four years, when he engaged in farming, purchasing 160 acres, which he farmed until 1861, when he resumed his trade, but also carried on his farm.
  In 1884 he removed to Kansas and located in Kiowa county, where he pre-empted 160 acres of land and also purchased 160 more. He worked his farms for two years and then returned to Camden. He owns 185 acres of land in Camden township and 160 acres in Kansas, also valuable property in Camden, all of which he and his wife accumulated.
  He was married in 1863, to Lydia A. Welly {Welty}, daughter of Jacob and Mary Welly {Welty}, born in Highland county, Ohio, in 1814. Mr. and Mrs. Cleek have eight children, six of whom are still living: Manora, deceased; James, on his father's farm; William, on section 6; Charles, in Camden; Emma, married Presley Price of Huntsville, Schuyler county, Illinois; Alma married G. Alters of Huntsville township; Sadie, deceased; and Clara, at home.
  Mr. Cleek is a Democrat in politics. He has been Supervisor and during his term the courthouse was built. He has held nearly all the minor offices in the township. He is a member of the Christian Church and is one of the first members in Camden.



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