William Harvey McCaskill

From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 583-584, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  William Harvey McCaskill is one of the oldest of the native-born citizens of Illinois now residing in Brown county. He was born in Sangamon county, Illinois, July 23, 1826. His father, Daniel McCaskill, was born in North Carolina, and his father, John McCaskill, was born in Scotland, coming to America when a young man, locating in North Carolina, where he married a lady of Scotch birth, and spent the remainder of his days there. His son was reared and educated in his native State, but came North when a young man and engaged in teaching. He married in Indiana, at the age of thirty-four, and either in the fall of 1825 or the spring of 1826 came to Illinois, making the journey overland with teams. He located in Sangamon county. At that time the State capital was at Vandalia; Springfield was but a hamlet, and the surrounding country was sparsely settled. He engaged in teaching, and resided there until 1834, when he emigrated to Schuyler county, settling in that part now included in Pea Ridge township, Brown county. He entered a tract of Government land, and at once built on the place. He was one of the first teachers in the county, and followed his profession for many years. He superintended the improvement of his farm, which he occupied until his death in 1851. His wife was Esther Turner, daughter of Archibald Turner, of Ireland, of Scottish descent.
  William has been a resident of this county since his eighth year, and has witnessed the improvement and development of this section of the country. Deer, wild turkeys and other game were plentiful. There were no railroads for years, and the people were obliged to convey their grain by team to a distant market. The people lived principally off of the products of their own farms. His father used to raise flax and sheep, and his mother manufactured all the cloth used in the family, dressing the children in homespun made by her own hands.
  William received an ordinary education, but began when very young to assist his father on the farm. After his marriage he settled on a farm on section 1, where he resided until 1864, when he settled on the old homestead, which he had bought from the other heirs. The farm, which is well improved, contains 240 acres; besides this he has a farm of ninety acres in Bates county, Missouri.
  He was married in October, 1851, to Jane Crooks. She was born in England, and came to America with her parents when an infant. Mr. and Mrs. McCaskill have eight children living: Daniel Morgan, Mary, William H., Thomas L., Ella, Esther, Cora and Kate.
  Mr. McCaskill is a Republican in politics, and he and his wife are highly respected members of society.

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