From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and
Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing
Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 480-481, a reprinted by Stevens
Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County
Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
J. Thomas Lawler, a widely and favorably known citizen of
Woodstock township, Schuyler county, Illinois, is a native of Virginia,
having been born in Fauquier county, that State, May 7, 1824. His
parents were Alexander and Margaret (White) Lawler, both natives of
Virginia. His father served with distinction in the war of 1812. His
father was a cooper, and followed his trade in his native State until
the spring of 1839, when he with his family drove from Virginia to
Ohio, and thence to Schuyler county, brining all their worldly goods in
their wagon. Arrived in Illinois, they purchased 160 acres of wild
timber land in Woodstock township, on which they built a log house, and
began the life of pioneers. Both father and mother lived here until
their death, although it had been much improved during their
possession, both with buildings of a substantial kind, as well as the
land well cultivated. The father died here at the age of sixty-four
years, while the mother survived him for a long time, dying at the
advanced age of seventy-three years. The Lawlers were originally from
Ireland, where they were well-to-do people.
Our subject was one of a family of fourteen children, seven of
whom are now living. He was reared in Woodstock township, and received
his education at the country schools of his day. He lived at home until
he was twenty-two years of age, working on the farm and at his trade of
coopering. He then enlisted in the army, and served in the Mexican war
for thirteen months, and now gets a Mexican pension. After returning
from the war, he married, on May 7, 1848, Miss Sarah E. Pinkerton, who
was born in Putnam county, Indiana, June 14, 1831. She was a daughter
of William and Anna (Jackson) Pinkerton. Her father was a native of
Kentucky, while her mother was a native of one of the Carolinas, having
come with their parents to Indiana in a very early day. Her father died
in Indiana, aged about thirty years, after which her mother moved to
Illinois, locating in 1855, in Rushville, later moving to Augusta. She
is still surviving, and lives with her daughter, the wife of our
subject. She had three children, only two of whom are living.
Joseph and Sarah Jackson were Mrs. Lawler's grandparents. They
were pioneers of Indiana and later moved to Illinois. Mrs. Jackson died
in Indiana aged fifty years and her husband died in Illinois at the
advanced age of ninety-six years. They were related to General Jackson,
so famous in the war of 1812.
David and Margaret Pinkerton, the grandparents on her father's
side both died in Indiana, at a very advanced age. They were both
natives of Kentucky, and of English ancestry.
After marriage, our subject settled where he now lives, residing
there continuously ever since. He built at first a little log cabin, in
which he and his family lived, until 1865, when he erected his present
substantial and comfortable home. His farm was unimproved when he
bought it, but it is now one of the best farms in the county, being
highly cultivated, and well improved with substantial barns for grain
and stock, besides other modern conveniences for the care of grain and
other agricultural products.
Mr. and Mrs. Lawler have eleven children, nine of whom are
living. Margaret E., married and has seven children; Henry W., married,
having three children; Silas E., married, has four children; Albert C.,
married has five children; Simon A. and Jane A., twins; Simon, a school
teacher; and Jane, married, and has two children; Nancy E., married,
with two children; Hattie E., married, and has one child; and Thomas
A., at home, and works the farm with his father.
Our subject and wife are consistent members of the Methodist
Episcopal Church, and contribute liberally towards its support.
Mr. Lawler and family are highly respected by people of the
community on account of their many admirable traits of character.