Clarion, the northeast corner township of Bureau county, is like La Moille, a fine agricultural township. The farms are well improved and show evidence of thrift on every hand. The population is largely of German extrication and they are noted for industry, frugality and economy.
The first settlers were Timothy Perkins, who came in 1833; Solomon Perkins and Elijah Bevans. The first house built in the township was long occupied by John Hetzler. The A. G. Porter place was first improved by Timothy Perkins. The roof, or at least quite a large part of it, was covered with deer skins, and the doors (Page 112) and windows were also filled with the same material. The township is drained by Bureau and Pike creeks.
Joseph Search came in 1834, and Stephen Perkins in 1835. A Mr. Hart also settled on the west side of the grove in 1835. In 1836, J. R. Kendall improved land on section 4, afterwards knows as the Stanard place. 1837 found John Clapp and Martin Hopp amount the arrivals. In 1838, a number of families settled in this township, among them were Joseph Allen, Hiram Johnson, Franklin Walker, Moses Dix, C. L. Dayton, Harvey Childs, Soloman Williams and others. A. G. Porter, David Wells and Theodore Babson were amount the very early settlers, also Joseph and Elisha Fassett.
It is said, by parties claiming to know, that Mr. James Sampson, who afterwards lived in Amboy, passed through Clarion as early as 1821, on an exploring expedition, his real destination being the Galena lead mines. Several years later he came back on the same route and stopped a short time at what was known as Picayune Grove; this grove received its name from the finding of a skeleton there many years ago, and near it was found a thimble and some thread, also a silver picayune (6 ¾ cents). There was nothing to identify the body, but from the fact that these things were found near the remains it was thought that he might have been a tramp tailor, who was either murdered or fell by the wayside.
Clarion is noted for having the smallest pauper bill, and also for having the smallest amount of delinquent taxes of any township in the county. The population by census of 1900 was 705. The following men have served as supervisors:
A. G. Porter, 1851-52; David Lloyd, 1853; David Wells, 1854, Milroy McKer, 1855-57; A. G. Porter, 1858-59; W. K. Bruce, 1860; David Lloyd, 1861; B. Benton, 1862-63; J. Clapp, 1864; W. K. Bruce, 1865; C. L. Dayton, 1866; B. Benton, 1867; T. Walker, 1868-70; A. G. Porter, 1871; Franklin Walker, 1872-79; N. F. Moulton, 1880-81; Sereno Bride, 1882, C. L. Dayton, 1883-89; J. L. Jacoby, 1890-92; C. Stamberger, 1893-96; Wm. Marriott, 1897-98; I. W. Hopps, 1899-1900; Wm Marriott, 1901-02; George D. Bauer, 1903-06.
-- Taken From the Past and Present of Bureau County, Illinois. Chicago: Pioneer Publishing, 1906, Page 111 and 112 - Clarion Township