Captain Robert E. Williams
Biography

From: "Biographical Review of Cass, Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois 1892", by Biographical Review Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois; pages 500-501, a reprinted by Stevens Publishing Co., Astoria, Ill., 1971, is sold by the Schuyler County Historical Society, Rushville, Illinois.
  Captain Robert E. Williams, Postmaster and druggist, of Camden, has been one of the most prominent of its residents since 1850. He was born in Montgomery county, Kentucky, April 14, 1829, being a son of Robert P. and Christina A. (Urquhart) Williams, both natives of Kentucky. The family came to Illinois in 1830, and first settled in Hancock county, but soon removed to Quincy. Robert Williams was a lawyer and practiced law the remainder of his life at Quincy. He died in 1840. He was an ardent Whig, and held local offices. He was also a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, being an earnest worker. When he died he was only thirty-five years old. His wife died in 1833, aged thirty years. They had three children, of whom Robert is the only surviving member. The father of Robert P. was John, and he married Amelia Gill. They came to Illinois, and died in Pike county. They had a large family of twelve children which they raised. They were widely known and respected.
  Robert E. received a fair education, and then clerked in several stores until he came to Schuyler county in 1850 and engaged in farming, in Birmingham township, where he purchased 340 acres of land. Three years later he removed to Rushville and engaged in saddlery and harness, continuing in the same nearly twenty years, and was also engaged in the drug trade. In 1879 he came to Camden, and has since represented the drug trade in Camden.
  In the time of his country's need he enlisted in Company K, One Hundred and Thirty-seventh Illinois Volunteers, going as Captain. They were stationed at Memphis. Captain Williams raised this company and served 100 days, the time of the enlistment. On his return he assisted in raising Company K, One Hundred and Fifty-first Illinois Volunteer Infantry, of which he was made First Lieutenant. They were ordered to Nashville, and from there to join Sherman in Georgia, at Columbus. Here the company was mustered out of service.
  In the cyclone of 1887 Mr. Williams lost his building and a fine stock of goods. He was caught up and lodged in the branches of an apple tree, some distance from where he was.
  He was married in 1851, to Mary E. Baker, born in Missouri, a daughter of George Baker. She died in Rushville in 1877, leaving one son, Emory, now with his father. In 1879 Captain Williams was married to Nancy Allen, who was born in Ohio. They have two children, Ellen M. and Myrtle A.
  He is a Republican in politics, and has been one since the formation of the party, and has held the position of Postmaster since 1880, with the exception of about ten months during the Cleveland administration. He is a member of Rushville Lodge, No. 9, A.F. & A.M., and Royal Arch and Chapter, at the same place. He was Master of the lodge two terms, and has held many of the minor offices. He is now Secretary of the lodge. He and his wife are worthy members of society, and are highly esteemed by all who know them.




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