From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and
Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing
Company, Chicago, Illinois; page 352, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing
Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical
Society, Rushville, Illinois.
Martha J. Harbison, the estimable lady whose biography it is our
pleasure to present to our readers, was born in Greenbriar county,
Virginia, November 29, 1844, daughter of John and Emily (Milliner)
Mason. The former born in Virginia, came West in 1853, by wagon and
boat, landing at Keokuk, Iowa. There he obtained teams and went to
Mount Pleasant, where he only remained a short time, and then came to
Illinois, by team, settling where his daughter now lives. He bought 120
acres of wild timber land, on which he built a log-house, and there the
family lived for many years, then sold and then rented and finally
removed to Kansas, where he now resides. The subject's mother died in
Missouri, when about seventy years of age, having been a native of
Virginia, also. All the family on both sides were farmers, as far as
can be discovered, except one member of the family, who operated a
woolen mill in Virginia. Mrs. Harbison's grandfather, Milliner, was in
the war of 1812.
Our subject remained at home until her marriage, which occurred
September 23, 1863. After marriage her husband settled on the farm
where she now resides in a fine brick residence that her husband built
prior to his death, which occurred August 28, 1890. Mr. Harbison was
born September 5, 1837, brother of Moses Harbison (see sketch). Mr. and
Mrs. Harbison had four children, one of whom they lost, a daughter,
Dolly, at the age of one year and six months. The living ones are: John
W., born August 16, 1864, at home renting the old farm, married to
Maggie Smith, in 1889. She was born February 26, 1871, daughter of
Henry and Elizabeth (Lindsay) Smith. They have one child, James, born
October 10, 1890. Mrs. Harbison's second child, Ella M., was born July
9, 1867, and married Frank Wood, February, 1890, have one girl, Lena,
born March 8, 1891. The third child, Ida F., was born February 24,
1870, and she married Fred Lippert, and they have one child, Ernest E.,
born March 16, 1891.
Mr. and Mrs. Harbison were members of the Christian Church and
all the family are church people. The son, James, is a strong Democrat.
This lady is one of the best known and well liked in the county and
well deserves a place in these pages.