Rachel D. Turner Martin

From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 414-415, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  Mrs. Rachel D. Martin was born in Redstone county, Pennsylvania, November 20, 1810. Her father was Isaac Turner and her mother, Sarah Minton, and she was born in New Jersey and he in Germany. They were farmers, who moved to Ohio in an early day, in 1815, and located on the little Miami near the junction of the east fork. Mrs. Martin was one of a family of ten children. The family settled on 160 acres of partially improved land and came down the Ohio on a flat boat from Wheeling and landed at Cincinnati, and brought their teams and household goods. They worked hard and at their death they had the farm all paid for with improvements. The father died at the age of fifty-eight years and his wife some years later. Mrs. Martin and her sister, Sirena, the wife of Abel Light, a farmer in Kansas, are still living. The subject of this sketch is eighty-two years old and her sister is eighty, both active, well preserved women. The most of the family died in youth or early childhood.
  Matthias Turner was a farmer in this valley and died at the age of thirty-two years in 1852. His brother, Michael, was a farmer on the old homestead, and had many farms in the county of Hamilton in Ohio. He died at the age of eighty years, in 1890. He had a family of seven children, and the six who survived him have good farms. He never went to school in his childhood with the exception of two years in Ohio, in summer, as they could not provide shoes and clothing in the winter.
  When in her seventeenth year Rachel went to school eight weeks and learned to read and write, the reader being the New Testament. In her nineteenth year she was married, April 12, 1829, to John Martin, who was born in Ohio, March 2, 1794. His father was Joseph Martin, and his mother was Rebecca (Giebel) Martin. Joseph Martin was a farmer, and was born in Wales and died in Ohio at a ripe old age, nearly eighty. His wife lived but a few months. They had nineteen children, two dying in infancy and one son at the age of nine years. Sixteen of these children came to adult life and became heads of families and the youngest had but one child.
  Mrs. Martin and her husband commenced domestic life on a rented farm in Hamilton county, Ohio. They owned a small farm there, which they sold and came to Illinois, in March, 1837, bringing five children. They made the trip to Meredosia by steamboat, and settled on eighty acres in the Illinois bottoms. They sold this place to Mrs. Martin's brother, Matthias, and then bought 160 acres, of which the present home is a part. The beloved father died September 23, 1854, at the age of sixty-one, and then the farm was divided. He left his widow with a comfortable property. He owned at one time 860 acres, and 360 was swamp and bottom land that was overflowed. He came first out here on horseback from Cincinnati with Benjamin Sperry, and the choice of land he made was poor, having been deceived by some settlers, who had come before him. When they came they brought their wagons and horses, one of the latter outliving his master. Mr. Martin was a stock raiser and breeder, and was one of the leading ones of his time. He raised cattle, horses, hogs and sheep, and clothed themselves with the wool of the sheep and the flax which they raised. Mrs. Martin has been a heroine in hard work all her life, and is still the most important one on the place. She is bright in mind and strong in body. Of her children: Robert died at the age of ten years, August, 1846; Isaac died in November, 1862; he was a volunteer in Company D, One Hundred and Nineteenth Illinois Volunteers, and died in the hospital at Quincy; he left a widow and two sons; John Edward died October 25, 1883, aged twenty-two, and Sarah, the wife of James P. Craig, died in 1866, at the age of thirty-three, leaving one son and one daughter; Michael E. Martin died June 2, 1878, and left his widow, whose maiden name was Francis E. Hume, and one child, who died in infancy. She is with her aged mother-in-law. The living of the family are: Joseph Martin, a farmer of Ohio, and has four living children: William B. Martin; M. V. Martin, a farmer near by on a part of the old farm. He has six children living and two deceased. John G. Martin, named for his father, is residing on the old farm, and has four children; Rachel F. J., the youngest of the family, is the wife of John E. Taylor, and has eight children. Mrs. Martin is a Baptist. Mr. Martin is a Democrat, while his sons are reformers.

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