James Monroe Read I
Biography


From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 468, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  James M. Read was born in Birmingham township, October 2, 1842. He was the son of Amasa Read, who was born in Massachusetts, and Jane, nee Henderson of Ohio. The grandfather, with two brothers, came to America from England when they were young men, and followed farming. Amasa and two brothers came to Ohio at a very early day, and settled at Xenia. In 1837 Amasa sold out his land, and with a wagon came overland to this county. He traded his team to some men to build him a home. In 1837 he went back and brought his family and settled on the farm where our subject now lives. When he came back the house was not finished, and he was obliged to rough it for nine months without doors or windows. The most of the children were born in this old log house.
  James was one of six children, three yet living. His father died in the old log house five years after coming here at the age of sixty-six years, and his wife died in 1890, aged eighty years. Amasa Read ran a clock factory in Ohio, and when he first came to Illinois he started a nursery. He was an old line Whig, and voted for William Henry Harrison.
  James remained at home until his marriage, January 3, 1871, to Sophia King, daughter of Louis and Harriet King, who came to Huntsville, Illinois, in 1838 or 1839, and are still living. Up to the time of his marriage, James worked at home, attended the district school, and went one year to Abingdon Seminary. John Brown, of Harper's Ferry fame, was an own cousin of Mr. Read. Mr. and Mrs. Read have five children: Effie M., Ellen J., and Eliza S., now in school at Augusta, and preparing for college; George M. and James M., are both at home.
  After his marriage he still lived on the old farm where he had bought out all of the heirs. Later he sold eighty acres, leaving him 240 at present. He has built a fine house and barn, and has as good a farm as is in the county, on which he raises a good deal of stock. He voted first for Lincoln, and has been a Republican ever since. Mr. and Mrs. Read attend the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Read joined the Methodist Episcopal Church at the age of nineteen. His sister, Eliza J., at the age of twenty-six taught kindergarten in Chicago, and is now the wife of Rev. J. T. Sunderland. Mr. Read has a delightful family and a very fine home.




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