Union County Illinois Genealogy Trails


















Golden and Silver Wedding Anniversaries 

Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

            The relatives and a number of their friends gathered at the house of Edwin Angell and wife last Sunday to celebrate their Golden Wedding, also the Silver Wedding of their oldest daughter and her husband, T.W. Ferrill.  Edwin Angell and wife were both born in England in the year 1826, within a few months of each other.  They were married Oct. 10, 1842, and came to this country in 1853.  They settled upon their present farm in 1863.  To them were born seven children:  Mrs. T.W. Ferrill, Mrs. V.G. Ferrill, and George Angell, of Cobden; Mrs. E.C. Kavanaugh of Des Moines, Iowa; Mrs. Ashby Tucker and Fred Angell of Alto Pass.  One daughter, a lovely young lady, died a few years ago.  The children were all present except Mrs. V.G. Ferrill, who has been sick for several weeks.  In the family are 20 grandchildren, some of whom have won high honors in their school careers.  Edwin Angell and wife are among our most highly respected citizens.  They are of that sturdy, industrious type of people that always make their influence felt in any community, and make the world better by being in it.  By industry and economy Edwin Angell has amassed quite a comfortable sum and all of his children are industrious and prosperous.  T.W. Ferrill and wife too are among Union county’s best citizens and are highly respected.  Besides the relatives the following persons were present:  Rev. C.C. Towne and family; John Ferrill and family; Mrs. L.T. Hardin and daughter, Mabel; Mrs. M.V. Baggott and two sons; A.C. Baggott of St. Louis, and James Venerable’s family.  A bounteous dinner was spread and was by no means the least important feature of the day’s program.  A most enjoyable time was had by all present and none will soon forget the occasion.  That both couples may live to celebrate their Diamond and Golden weddings 25 years hence is the wish of many friends.

Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Ill., Saturday, 18 Aug 1902

Golden Wedding

Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Bauer Celebrate

50th Anniversary of Their Marriage

Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter 

Half a century ago, to be exact on the 12th day of May, 1869, Joseph Bauer was united in marriage to Miss Louise Metzger.  His brother John was married on the same date at the same place, in fact it was a double wedding consummated with all the merriment peculiar to such occasions:  Rev. Gottlieb Ade was the officiating minister.

The children, grandchildren, and other relatives of Mr. and Mrs. Bauer planned to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of their marriage in a fitting manner, and the date happened to fall on last Sunday.  It was intended to be a surprise for Mr. and Mrs. Bauer and succeeded measurably well, but the old folks couldn't help being a bit affected by the subdued excitement all about them and curious, if not suspicious, as to what it meant.  However they were whisked away to church, and during their absence the children, kin and connection, from town and country, took possession of the comfortable Bauer home on South Main Street and many willing hands making light work, it soon presented a festival scene.  A long table was quickly improvised on the shady lawn, and soon the snowy linen was literally covered with every imaginable good thing to eat, produced from innumerable baskets.  Grandfather and Grandmother Bauer were then escorted to the head of the table and Rev. W. O. Finks in a few earnest, well chosen words congratulated them on the golden memories of fifty years together that was theirs, and in the name of all the company wished for them many more happy years.  Rev. William E. Bridges followed with a like address, and after grace the business of disposing of the good things to eat occupied the attention of the old and young for an hour.  They ate valiantly, but the supply was inexhaustible and in fact never seemed to grow less.  Mr. and Mrs. Bauer were then formally presented with $52, mostly in gold.  The two extra dollars was their reward for being good, Mr. Finks said.  Ninety-one persons were present at dinner, all but five or six being of the family.

The Bauer family came from Austria 66 years ago.  There were four boys:  Mattheis and Martin (both deceased), John, and Joseph.  The Metzger family came to Jonesboro from Portsmouth, Ohio, 54 years ago.  Besides Mrs. Bauer the children in this family were Mrs. Valentine Duerckheimer, Peter Duerckheimer, both of Jonesboro, also Mrs. Barbara Ransmeier, who died nine months ago, and Fred W. Metzger, of Dallas, Texas.  Mr. Bauer is 71 years old, Mrs. Bauer 73.  They have lived in Jonesboro ever since their marriage, for the past 43 years in their present home on South Main street.  Here they reared a family of five children to man and womanhood, and among all their descendants there is no departure from the parental characteristics of industry, honest, and Christian faith.  Mr. and Mrs. Bauer are members of the M. E. church of Jonesboro.  Their children are Mrs. Adam Schlenker, Mrs. C. Zwhalen, Charles, Arthur and Ernest Bauer.  Two children died in infancy.  Besides the five children living there are 15 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Mr. Bauer is a wagon maker and woodworkman.  He put in many years of toil in his shop near his residence, but nature warned him a few years ago that his hard work at the bench must cease.  He is now in fairly good health, while Mrs. Bauer could easily pass for 60 years instead of the 73 she confesses to.  Their serene old age is gladdened by the love and affection of children and grandchildren and the respect and esteem of all who know them.

Those present were:

Children:  Mrs. Adam Schlenker and Mr. Schlenker, Mrs. C. Zwahlen and Mr. Zwahlen, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Bauer, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Bauer, and Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Bauer.

Grandchildren-Mrs. Clarence Grear and Mr. Grear; John and Arthur Schlenker; Esther, Rudolph and Fred Bauer; Mada, Ida, Pearl, Della, and Minnie Zwahlen; Mary, Joseph, and Bruno Bauer.

Great-grandchildren-Judson, Harry, and Rebecca Grear.

Other relatives and friends present were Mr. and Mrs. Val Duerckheimer; John Bauer, Kate Bauer, Elizabeth, Bertha, and Caroline Duerckheimer, Delfred Hehenberger; Jacob Bartruff; Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Bartruff and Clara, Adolph, Paul, Lydia, Olva, David, and Gilbert; Mr. and Mrs. Logan Roberts and Ruth, Grace, Naomi, George, Samuel, and Leona; Mrs. Lulu Reischauer and Louie, Hulda, Karl, Josie, and Leona; Mr. and Mrs. Sam Bauer and son Norman; Esther Schlenker, Mrs. Cassel and Joseph and Charlotte; Mrs. Jercick and daughter Elnora; Rev. and Mrs. W. E. Bridges and little daughter Lucy Caroline; Rev. W. O. Finks, A. S. Tibbets, Ira Brown, and Charles Hatcher.

(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 16 May 1919)


Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

John C. Biles and Miss Elizabeth A. Goodman were married at Concord, N.C., February 14, 1871, by the Rev. Mr. Kone.  They came to Union County, Illinois, to live in the following year, purchasing a farm.  A son and daughter were born to them, but both died, the son in the bloom of promising boyhood, the little girl in the pure innocence of infancy, and life was never quite the same to John and Elizabeth.  But they carried on, performing life’s duties as they came with the sun’s daily round. For several years past they have lived in Jonesboro and Monday, February 14, was the fiftieth anniversary of their wedding day.  No attempt was made to formally observe it, but a number of relatives and friends called upon them at their home on South Main street during the day and the mails brought congratulations and good wishes from eight different states.  Several nice presents were also received by Mrs. Biles and they will both remember with pleasure their golden wedding day.  Mr. Biles will be 74 years old on the 3rd day of August next, Mrs. Biles was 71 on the 3rd day of the present month.  They are both blessed with health and strength, have sufficient for their wants, and the friends of Jonesboro and everywhere else wish for them many years yet of happiness and contentment.

(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 18 Feb 1921)


Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

    Rev. and Mrs. Thornton Clark were the recipients of many felicitations on Friday, January 7th.  The occasion was the fiftieth anniversary of their marriage.  All day long there were callers, and many congratulatory messages come by mail and wire.  At noon there was a dinner for the immediate family at their home.  This dinner was in a way a surprise and was prepared by Mrs. C. O. Clark and Miss Marjorie Walker.  Miss Walker baked the wedding cake, which was uniquely adorned with a miniature bride and groom.  Mrs. Gibson, a sister of Mr. Clark, came down form Champaign to spend the season with her brother’s family, and by her cooperation another surprise was possible.  The regular Goodfellowship meeting of the Methodist church was made the reason for the Clark’s attendance in the evening.  Mrs. Gibson repeatedly expressed the desire to attend and out of deference to her wish all repaired to the church where many friends had gathered.  Supper had been laid in the church parlors and when the guests were invited to the dining room, Mr. and Mrs. Clark, on entering were met by the flower girl, Mary Bonner, who presented Mrs. Clark with a bouquet of yellow roses and led the couple to an altar where surrounded by their family and friends, the wedding ceremony was read by Rev. Mr. Batson.  Miss Ernestine Moore sang “I Love You Truly.”  After congratulations supper was served and the happy couple were presented by Prof. O. E. Butterfield on behalf of the friends of the Methodist church with a beautiful buffet service.  The bride thanked the friends for the many expressions of kindness and love and the groom made a talk, which reflected the joy, and satisfaction, which a golden wedding brought him.
    Thornton Clark and Mary Corray were married in Urbana, Ill., January 7th, 1877.  For four years the couple lived in Kansas when they came to Illinois and Mr. Clark entered the University of Illinois.  He soon began to preach and has been pastor of Methodist churches in Illinois and Oklahoma.  From 1910 to 1911 Mr. Clark was superintended and Mrs. Clark was matron of the Pythian Home in Decatur.  In all this world for the betterment of mankind the pastor was ably assisted by Mrs. Clark.  They endeared themselves to many friends in these different fields.  In 1921 they came to live with us, bringing with them a wealth of experience, which has enabled them to be of such signal service to our community.  Their friends here have learned to appreciate and love them and the sentiment of their friends in Anna is fittingly expressed.                                                                                                    (Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 14 Jan 1927)



Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

    Mr. and Mrs. Valentine Duerkheimer celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of their wedding at their comfortable farm home south of Jonesboro, Sunday, December 19.  Mr. Duerkheimer is 75 years old, his wife is 72.  They are both enjoying reasonably good health and after sharing the joys and sorrows of fifty years together may now begin to grow old gracefully.  Mrs. Duerkheimer was Miss Lena Metzger.  Her family lived in the country at the time of her marriage but afterward moved to Jonesboro.
    The occasion was strictly a family affair, only children and grandchildren being present.  The children present were Elizabeth Duerkheimer, Mrs. Joseph Bartruff and daughter Muriel, of Salem, Ore., Bertha Duerkheimer, Mrs. Henry Scherb and son Valentine of Brazil, Ind., Mrs. John Ury and son Melvin, also Mr. Ury of St. Louis, and Delphard Hehenberger, a grandson.  There are six other grandchildren.
    The children present presented Mr. and Mrs. Duerkheimer with $50 in gold, and it is unnecessary to say that a dinner worthy of the occasion was served.  And it is also unnecessary to say that all friends will wish for this worthy couple all the good that life holds for many years to come.
                                                                                                                     (Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 24 Dec 1926)


Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

    The golden anniversary of the wedding of Mr. and Mrs. A. B. Garrett of 614 North Eleventh street was celebrated yesterday afternoon at their home form 2 to 5 o’clock, several hundred of their friends and neighbors being present.
    It was a lovely home affair throughout the afternoon and was immensely enjoyed by everyone who had the pleasure of attending.
    The dining room where refreshments were served was beautifully decorated in a color scheme of gold and white and on the daintily arranged table, at each end, was a wedding cake which was baked by Mrs. Garrett and her daughter, Mrs. Pearl G. McFarland.
    In order to give the large number of friends of Mr. and Mrs. Garrett an opportunity to join in the celebration of their wedding anniversary, several of their intimate friends and neighbors secured the large hall at the Labor Temple, 418 Collinsville avenue last night, where the bride and groom of fifty years ago were brought and a specially prepared program of entertainment of speeches by ministers and others, solos and music, ending with a splendid banquet down in the banquet room of the building.
    The large hall was filled to its capacity and all present wished the bride and groom, Mr. and Mrs. A. B. Garrett, health and happiness for years to come.
    During the reception and celebration held at their home and also at the hall at night they were the recipients of many beautiful gift and flowers.  Among the gifts was one of  $50 in gold from a number of his close friends.
    During the night celebration, the bride and groom of 50 years ago, renewed their wedding vows during a beautiful wedding ceremony performed by the Rev. J. A. Smith.
    Mr. Garrett was born on a farm in Mississippi County, Missouri, in 1852 and came to southern Illinois at the age of ten years, making this his home since.
    The parents of both settled in Union County, Illinois, not far from the same locality.  Her father, Dr. A. G. Williams, was an able and successful physician, practicing in and around the village of Dongola.  Mr. Garrett lived on a farm near that village.  Mrs. Garret’s maiden name was Georgia Williams.
    Besides the daughter, Mrs. Pearl G. McFarland, a son, whom many here are well acquainted with, Ray Garrett, a graduate of the East St. Louis high school, now a practicing lawyer in Chicago.
    Mr. Garrett is a member of Pride of the Valley Lodge No. 435 of this city, Esther Rebekah Lodge No. 175 of Murphysboro, Illinois, and is also a member of all the Masonic fraternities, and has a wide acquaintance.
    A large number of the membership of the lodge fraternities in which he holds membership were in attendance either at his home during the day or at the hall at night.
    There were also quite a number of friends from out of town present to join in the celebration of the wedding anniversary.—East St. Louis Journal, Sept. 27.                                                                                   (Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, October 2, 1925)

John and Jennie Grear Quietly Celebrate it at Home of Son in Herrin

Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

    The life romance of John W. Grear and Jennie Sowers possibly began in their childhood, certainly in their schooldays, for they were both born in Jonesboro where they played and studied and grew to man and womanhood together.  John was the third of a quartette of brothers whose individuality and accomplishments made them noted in the social professional and business life of the old town, but he is the only survivor of the four.  His father, John Grear, was also born in Jonesboro, March 2, 1824, and his father, George Grear, was a Union County pioneer from North Carolina who had soldiered under General Jackson.  John W.’s mother was also a North Carolinian by birth and his wife’s ancestry also goes back to the Old North State, her father, David Sowers and the parents of his wife, Mary Cruse, being natives of that state.  But this story is supposed to be about John and Jennie and it shall be along that line, barring further digressions.
    John W. Grear was born August 15, 1853.  The house where he first saw the light of day and where his first protesting indant roar was heard may be still standing.  His father build and occupied at different times several houses in Jonesboro.  Johnny grew up much as any small town boy would of his day—played, fished and hunted with his companions and went to school six months during the winter.  In early boyhood he undertook to learn the printer’s trade in the office of the Jonesboro Gazette.  What he failed to learn there, if anything, he afterward acquired as a compositor on Chicago morning papers, and he has never gotten away from the smell of printer’s ink for long at a time.
    Jennie Sowers was born October 20, 1853, so you will observe that there is only a difference of two months and five days in their ages.  She like the youth who was destined to become her husband was educated in the public schools of Jonesboro.
    Shortly after attaining his twentieth year to be exact on the 20th day of October 1873, John founded the Murphysboro, Ill., Independent. It printed a successful venture and by October 27, 1875, was so firmly established that he and Jennie were married and began their life journey together.  The wedding occurred at the old Sowers home in Jonesboro and of those who were present on that interesting occasion five are still living.  They are Mrs. Mary Sowers Scott and James C. Sowers, Miss Alice Cruse, Harry Stokes, of Chicago, and Mrs. Walter Grear, of Anna.
    The founder of the Murphysboro Independent finally disposed of it but only to enter the newspaper game elsewhere.  He was publisher of the Mt. Vernon News from 1887 to 1892, establishing the Daily News in 1891.  He returned to Murphysboro in 1896 and established the Daily News there, but in 1902 was publisher of the Herrin News and in 1906 established the DuQuoin Daily Herald.  At present he is conducting a job printing office at West Frankfort.
    Mr. Grear’s parents celebrated their golden wedding anniversary at their home in Jonesboro in 1897, six weeks later his mother died.  In 1910 Mrs. Grear’s parents celebrated the sixty-first anniversary of their wedding at their home in Jonesboro.  Her father died in November of that year at the advanced age of 90 years.
    Mr. and Mrs. John W. Grear celebrated their golden wedding Tuesday, October 27, 1925, at the home of their son, D. C. Grear, at Herrin, Ill.  The celebration was in the form of a family reunion and dinner, and the chief floral piece was an enormous bunch of fifty golden yellow California chrysanthemums.  Among those present were Mr. and Mrs. Grear’s younger son, Fred, and his wife of West Frankfort, and Mrs. Mary Sowers Scott of Jonesboro.  Their older son, David C. established and is publisher of the Herrin Journal, one of the best newspaper properties in Southern Illinois.
    Owing largely to his newspaper activities John W. Grear has a wide acquaintance throughout Southern Illinois and his friends are legion.  He is also widely known as a musician and bandmaster, and Grear’s Band of Murphysboro had a reputation that was more than statewide.  His gentle wife shares in his popularity and is loved by all who know her.  She is at home to all friends at the old Sowers homestead in Jonesboro.  And it is the sincere wish of all friends, especially those in the old hometown, that John and Jennie may live to celebrate many more wedding anniversaries.                                                                         (Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 30 Oct 1925)

Golden Wedding Anniversary
Jacob Grear and Rebecca Wimpey

Jonesboro Gazette, 21 April 1900

Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Grear Celebrated
Their Fiftieth Marriage Anniversary Wednesday

MARRIED on the 18th inst., in this place by Rev. H. E. Hempsted, Mr. JACOB GREAR, to Miss REBECCA WIMPEY.
    Young bride--a prayer for thee!
    That all they hopes possessing,
    Thy ___may praise her God, and he
    May crown thee with his blessing.
    We are sure they will do well, because they did not forget the printer.  Just such another lot of cake as was sent to this office (both in quanity and quality) would have made the mouth of the epicure water.  We say in advance if young married folks want to do well don't forget the printer.  --Jonesboro Gazette, April 1850.
    The above is an exact reproduction of the wedding notice as it appeared fifty years ago, and it may be said that the pious admonition of the reverend gentleman was not forgotten.  He was not only pastor of the Baptist Church here then, but editor of the Gazette as well, and fifty years afterward, that is on Wednesday, April 18, 1900, his successor in the latter position was invited to sit at Mr. and Mrs. Grear's hospitable board and partake of the bountiful cheer placed thereon.
    Mr. and Mrs. Grear were married in Mother Willard's house, which stood opposite the New Roberts House.  The wedding feast was spread in what is now the New Roberts House, then the residence of Willis Willard, the merchant prince of Jonesboro.  It was Squire Grear's desire to assemble his children together and eat dinner in the same dining room used on the occasion of his marriage, but as the children had made other arrangements it required some diplomacy to get him to abandon the postion without betraying their plan.  Of all who witnessed the wedding of Squire and Mrs. Grear or Aunt Becky as she is affectionately known to relatives and freinds, only four are now living.  They are Mrs. Walton, Mrs. Perrine, and Mrs. D. W. Brown of Anna, and Mrs. B. L. Wiley of Makanda.  They were little Davie girls then, daughters of Winstead Davie, the other merchant prince of Jonesboro, later of Anna.  There have been other generations of Davie girls, but perhaps none fairer than those of fifty years ago.
    Squire Grear was born in Union County, south of Jonesboro.  He comes of good southern stock; and all the Grears are of a mental and moral fiber that would cause them to succeed in any walk of life.  He served in the Mexican war under Col. Bissell.  In 1858 the same Col. Bissell as the first republican governor of Illinois, signed Squire Grear's commission as justice of peace, and for 42 years he has held that office continuously being re-elected without a break, a record that perhaps cannot be duplicated in the state of Illinois.  He will be 74 years old on the 28th day of next June and it would be hard to find a ruggeder, healthier, stronger old gentleman anywhere.
    Mrs. Grear will be 72 years old on the 28th day of next July.  She was born in South Carolina, but came in this county when twelve years old.  After their marriage they lived for five years in the country, but have ever since lived here in Jonesboro.  Their marriage was blessed with eight children.  Three died at a tender age and Mollie, the well beloved daughter, wife of W. W. Wiley of Anna, died January 1, 1895, leaving three children, two boys and one girl.  Four stalwart boys still live and are among our good and influential citizens.  Judson, the oldest, is a successful farmer west of town.  He married Miss Bettie Hines and they have four sons.  Frank, proprietor of "Grear's" the well known mercantile house, married Miss Kate Davie and they have two sons and one daughter.  Dr. D. W. is a successful physician.  He married Miss Ethel Robinson of Anna, and they have one boy and two girls.  Roy, the youngest son, married Miss Nannie Johnson of Jackson, Mo., and they have one daughter and one son.  The four sons and their wives and children all took dinner with their parents Wednesday, and Squire Grear's only living brother, ex-Mayor John Grear, and the latter's sons and daughter, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Grear of Anna, were also present.    
    We have before mentioned that the Grears are a remarkable musical family.  Squire Grear says laughingly that it is easily accounted for that he played the fife in the Mexican war.
    The dinner on Wednesday was arranged by the children and was a strictly informal family gathering and a most enjoyable one, although this community would have been delighted to have made it a more public affair.  The old folks were kept in ignorance of what was brewing until well along towards the dinner hour.
    Squire Grear has been a good and useful citizen, a man of sturdy, honest, incorruptible character, and sterling worth.  Aunt Becky has been a blessing daily and hourly to this community.  Her good deeds would fill a book; her life is an inspiration to all who value true womanly worth.  We salute the brave old couple who fifty years ago took up life's burden together, have shared its sorrows and its joys, never losing faith nor hope nor courage, and now may their declining years be filled with sunshine.
    Mother Grear, all hail to thee!
    All griefs and joys possessing
    Thy soul hath steadfast been--
    God has crowned you with his blessing.

Half a Century and Six Years More

Have Mr. and Mrs. M. N. Heilig Been Married

 Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

            Last Saturday a number of the grandchildren and other relatives of Mr. and Mrs. Michael N. Heilig,, twenty-eight in all, went out to their home in the extreme southeast part of Jonesboro to kind of remind them that they had been a long time married-fifty-six years on the 18th day of this month.

            The crowd took victuals along already for the table and a fine dinner was spread and heartily enjoyed, and Uncle Mike and Aunt Sarah were delighted to have the youngsters with them, and gave them a cordial welcome.

            Mr. Heilig was born in North Carolina and came to Union County at the age of about 14 years.  Mrs. Heilig was born in the county, her maiden name being Eddleman.  He is now 81 years old while she is 76.  They were married February 18, 1858, by the Rev. Daniel Jenkins. They lived for more than fifty years on a farm about six miles south of Jonesboro, and were communicants and worshiped at St. John's Lutheran church.  About three or four years ago, finding the burden of the big farm getting too heavy for them, they bought a small place at the southeast edge of Jonesboro and moved there.

            Mr. and Mrs. Heilig are in fairly good health and all their faculties are remarkably well preserved.  They are as good an old couple as ever honored the citizenship of Union County, and a host of warm friends wish for them many years yet together and among their loved ones.

            The children now living are D.W. Heilig, of Pulaski, Dr. O.M. Heilig, of Mill Creek, Mrs. Mary Van Amburg and Mrs. James Ellis, of Anna, and George M. Heilig, who lives near his parents.  There are fifteen grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

            Mrs. C.C. Goodman, of Jonesboro, who is 86 years old, is a sister of Mr. Heilig.

(Jonesboro Gazette, 27 Feb 1914)

Golden Wedding

Mr. and Mrs. Landrith Reach Fiftieth Anniversary

 Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

    Sunday, June 18, 1916, Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Landrith celebrated their fiftieth anniversary at their home four miles west of Cobden.
Mr. Landrith was born on the place he now owns, and was married to Elizabeth Lilly, who was born one mile from there.  They have lived all their married life here.
          Mr. Landrith was the oldest of a family of five children.  His father died when he was but nine years old.  The cares of life came to him at an early age in assuming the duties of head of the family.  His mother lived a widow to an old age and died on the old homestead.
        Mr. and Mrs. Landrith have reared a family of six children, Mrs. Fred Angell, Alto Pass; Mrs. F. E. Baldwin, Chicago; Mrs. Tiffany, Grand Tower; Mrs. Grabo, Mountain Glen; John and Floyd, at home.  They have been lifelong Methodists, and in early pioneer days their home was the minister's stopping place.  They have always been noted for hospitality, which was extended to all.
        Their children, all their relatives and many friends, a total of 75 persons, were present.  Long tables were arranged in the shade on the lawn, and when dinner was announced the tables were loaded with all the good things to ear that one could think of.  All feasted to their heart's content.  Rev. Virgil Gould, pastor of Jonesboro and also Walnut Grove, made a good talk.  Mr. Landrith responded with a very touching speech giving a brief history of his life and the advancement that has been made.  He closed his talk by asking all present to prepare to meet him in heaven.  He said that his father on his dying bed called his family around him and took his hand and asked him to meet him in heaven.  He said the promise then given cheered and comforted him all his life.  Several appropriate songs were sung.
        The venerable couple received an offering of many pieces of gold and many valuable presents.  A photographer took pictures of the group.  It was an enjoyable affair to all present and before leaving all joined in wishing them many more years of life and happiness.

(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, 1916)


Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

Comrade Lee Penninger of Stone Fort, will hold his 51st wedding anniversary at the old Penninger spring on the farm where he was born, about three miles east of Balcom, Sunday, August 6.

(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 4 Aug 1916)


Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Roy will be at the home to their many friends next Monday, June 23.  It is the fiftieth anniversary of their wedding and all of their children and grandchildren are expected to be present to help them celebrate the event.  Mr. and Mrs. Roy were married at Grand Chain, Ill., June 23, 1880.  Mr. Roy taught several terms of school, then entered the railway service as agent at St. Francisville, Ill., where he remained eight months; then they moved to Mt. Carmel, where he was agent for seven years.  He then served as agent at Cobden five years, then he became secretary of the Anna Building and Loan Association, which position he held for 19 years, and has served the association as treasurer the past six years.  Mr. and Mrs. Roy have resided in Anna for the past 35 years and their friends are limited only by the extent of their acquaintance.  Their children who are expected here for their anniversary are R. P. Roy, Shreveport, La., H. M. Roy, Galesburg, Ill., Jesse L. Roy, Chicago, Mrs. Charles A. Myers, Marshalltown, Iowa, and Mrs. Lynn D. Sifford, of Anna, and their families.

(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 20 Jun 1930; transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter)


    The fiftieth wedding anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. W. P. Rushing was celebrated at their home in Jonesboro Sunday, Dec. 18.  A bountiful dinner was served, and the old folks received some substantial tokens of affection of their children and other relatives in the way of gold coins and jewelry.
    Mr. and Mrs. Rushing are in fairly good health.  Our old friend Pinckney went through a severe illness two or three years ago since which he has never been as strong as yore, but his fund of good spirits and cheerfulness remain undiminished.  He is 76 years old.  Mrs. Rushing, “Aunt Viny,” was one of the Overbay girls who lived in Jonesboro during the 70s of the last century, the family afterwards moving to Dongola.  Since their marriage and until moving to town they had lived mostly in the country near Jonesboro.  A host of friends will join us in wishing them many years yet of peaceful happiness.
    Children and other relatives and friends of Mr. and Mrs. Rushing were present on the anniversary occasion as follows:
    Mr. and Mrs. E. A. Parrish and daughter Martha Jane, of Piggott, Ark.; Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Rushing and family; Arthur Rushing, Mrs. L. R. Crichton, Mrs. Homer Powles and children and Miss Wanda Weaver, all of West Frankfort, Ill.; Mrs. J. A. Dillow, of Dongola, Ill., and Mrs. Joe Gattinger of Shawnee, Okla., sisters of Mrs. Rushing; Mr. and Mrs. A. B. Dodd and children, Mr. and Mrs. A. Murphy, Mrs. Nellie Williford, Mrs. O. F. Jones and Mr. and Mrs. John A. Tibbets, all of Jonesboro, and Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Murphy and children of Anna.
    Mr. and Mrs. Rushing have 23 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
    It’s a long ways back to 1877, but we could tell the squinch-eyed world lots of things that happened in the Roaring Seventies, hey Pinckney?
(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 23 Dec 1927; transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter.)


Shy 50th Wedding Anniversary

Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

    Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Shy celebrated their golden wedding anniversary New Year’s Day.  They have lived in Jonesboro and in the same place for 37 years.  Mr. Shy is a veteran of the Civil War.  He is in his 82nd years.  Mrs. Shy is about 73.  Of their six children, Jacob Shy, of Metropolis, William Shy, of St. Louis, and Mrs. Fred Meyer, of this city, were able to be with the old folks a few hours and all their neighbors and friends wish for Mr. and Mrs. Shy many happy returns of their wedding anniversary.
                                                                                                                (Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, January 9, 1925)

Sixty Years Wedded

Interesting Event in the Lives of a Fine Old Couple

Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter 

            On Thursday, Sept. 23, 1909, Mr. and Mrs. David Sowers passed the sixtieth milestone on their journey through life together.  The event was very quietly celebrated and without attempt at elaboration.  In the afternoon Mr. and Mrs. Sowers welcomed all who chose to call at their beautiful home in the north part of Jonesboro, where they have lived for 40 years.  Their daughters, Mrs. Mary Sowers Scott and Mrs. John W. Grear, assisted in entertaining the guests and a warm hand clasp and hearty greeting was extended to all.  Simple refreshments were offered the guests.  Many took advantage of the opportunity to pay their respects to the fine old couple and it was a day of sweet and tender memory for all who participated.

            'Tis sixty years since Mr. and Mrs. Sowers began the journey of life together.  They were married by the Rev. Mr. Stoneberger, a Lutheran minister, in a house still standing near the center of town and which was the former home of Mrs. Sowers' sister, Mrs. Caroline Roberts.  A Miss Helen Webb and the late Paul Misenhimer "stood up" with them.

            David Sowers was born in Davidson County, North Carolina and is 89 years old.  He is still active and strong, enjoys reading and takes keen interest in the affairs of modern life.  His only infirmity is that he is quite deaf.  He was a blacksmith in his younger years and has always been a God fearing church going, right-living Christian gentleman.  The writer used to be in his class at the Methodist Sunday school ever so many years ago, when Sunday school was held there in the afternoon.

            Mrs. Sowers is native born.  The place of her birth was two and one half miles east of Dongola, and she is now in her 81st year.  She was the daughter of Peter and Sophia Hess Cruse and one of a family of 10 children.  One brother is still living, Alexander Cruse, now in the state of Washington, and she has five sisters living whose names and ages follow:  Mrs. Caroline Roberts, 88, and Mrs. George W. Walburn, 83, both living in Jonesboro.  Mrs. Stokes, 74, Mrs. Andrews, 72, and Mrs. M.W. Brown, 66, all living in Anna.  Mrs. Sowers has a remarkable memory and retains vivid recollections of old times.  She can remember when all the country east of the Jonesboro Square and including the city of Anna was all unbroken woods and is a most entertaining talker on the good old days and times.  Mrs. Sowers has been a member of the Methodist church since she was 15 years old.

            Mr. and Mrs. Sowers have three children, the two daughters named above, and a son, James C. Sowers, of Washington, D.C.  They also have two grandsons, David and Fred Grear, and one great-grandson, son of the former.

            A host of friends, unable to be present in person, greet Mr. and Mrs. Sowers in spirit and wish them many happy returns of the day.

 (Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 24 Sep 1909)


Transcribed and submitted by Darrel Dexter

A dispatch from Springfield, Mo., in the St. Louis Post Dispatch last Saturday said that Mr. and Mrs. William H. Whittaker, of Springfield observed their 67th wedding anniversary on that date.  The dispatch further states that Mr. Whittaker is 88 and his wife 89 years old and that they were married in Jonesboro in March 1854.

(Jonesboro Gazette, Jonesboro, Illinois, Friday, 11 Mar 1921)

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