D. Flanigan


Carroll County IL Biography



This gentleman is a well-to-do and representative business man and worthy citizen of the city of Savanna, now partially retired from active life, but still occupying a portion of his time in dealing in real-estate. He is also the owner of a fine dairy-farm, which he leases to others. He came to this State in 1856, and county in 1861, and has ever since made his home here, excepting six years spent in the State of Iowa. He was educated chiefly in Massachusetts, where his relatives had settled when he was twelve years old.

Our subject was born in Central Ireland, in December, 1842. His parents were John and Winifred (Redding) Flanigan, both natives of that country, where the father had a small farm, and there both lived and died. Our subject, with other members of the family, came to this country when quite young and lived at Groton and at Lowell, Mass., until he came West with some friends, who located at Kankakee, where he soon developed into a railroad man. Before making his residence in the city, however, he lived for a time in the township, taking up his permanent abode in Savanna City in 1864. Early in 1863 the Western Union Railroad had been completed to this place, and on taking up his residence here Mr. Flanigan was appointed its agent. He continued with this road during its various changes, it being in the fall of 1869 run by officers and agents of the St. Paul Railway Company, but nominally under the same name and ownership. This arrangement continued until late in the year 1871, when the road was absorbed and consolidated with the St. Paul Railway, of which it became a division, having its terminus at Marion, Iowa, and Rock Island, Ill. In 1871 our subject became Assistant Superintendent of the Iowa Division, and later his supervision was extended over all the southwest divisions of the St. Paul lines; he at one time being the Assistant Superintendent for 330 miles of road; having charge for a time of the lines both in Illinois and Iowa. Later he was assigned to the charge of the Iowa Division, which had been increased by the building of new lines, and his headquarters, while thus engaged, were usually at Oxford Junction, Iowa.

In 1882 our subject severed his connection with the railroad company, and has since then been largely interested in building up property in Savanna, having up to this time spent more than $10,000 in improvements. He has been largely interested in the upbuilding and beautifying of this city, to whose growth and prosperity he has materially contributed, and in whose success and development he takes great interest. He is the owner of about twenty acres of land within the city limits; on a part of which he has a fine brick residence, conveniently and pleasantly arranged and elegantly furnished. It is on Chicago Avenue, and set back a considerable distance from the street-way, having large and pleasant grounds surrounding it, and although not as large as some other houses in the city, it is one of the most substantial, and is furnished with all the modern improvements for both comfort and beauty.

Mr. Flanigan owns a farm in Savanna Township of over 300 acres, which is the dairy-farm already alluded to. On this farm, although leased, he has thirty valuable milch-cows (sic), chiefly Jerseys. In whatever he has undertaken Mr. Flanigan has made a marked success, whether in farming, railroading, or in real-estate operations; and his friends, of whom he has many warm ones, are gratified at his progress. His genial and companionable manners endear him to every one with whom he comes in contact, and while acquiring the friendship of many, he has excited the envy of none. He is a man of good, practical education, of broad views, competent and business-like in all his transactions, and his success in life is the legitimate outgrowth of those qualities.

Our subject was married, in Richmond, Ind., in April, 1876, to Miss M. Riley, who was born in Wayne County, Ind., in 1854, and is a daughter of Philip and Margaret Riley. Her father was a prominent man in Richmond, and took an especial interest in the fire department of that city, of which he had for years been an active member. While working to extinguish a serious conflagration there, he received injuries which terminated in his death; and, having died at his voluntary post of duty, he was referred to afterward, by the people who had known him, as a real hero. Her mother is still living in Richmond, and is now about fifty-five years of age. Mrs. Flanigan was reared and educated in the city of her birth, and is an extremely intelligent and thoughtful woman, and has proved to be to her husband a capable helpmate. She is the mother of three children Daisy M., D. J., and Frank R., all living at home. The mother is a member of the Catholic Church, in which faith she is bringing up her children.

The natural capabilities of Mr. Flanigan have made him a marked man in the community, in which he has become widely known and highly respected, and in whose affairs he wields a wide influence. In politics he is a Democrat, and is at present City Assessor.

Transcribed & Contributed by Carol Parrish from Portraits and Biographical 1889 Pg 997

Back home