genealogy trails

Christian County Illinois

Named after Christian County in Kentucky through the influence of emigrants from that county.

Established February 15, 1839 as Dane County (Laws, 1839, p. 104). Name changed to Christian County in 1840.

Portrait and biographical record of Christian County, Illinois : containing biographical sketches of prominent and   representative citizens, together with biographies of all the Governors of the state, and of the Presidents of the United States.  Chicago, Ill. : Lake City Pub. Co., 1893, p264.  Transcribed by Judy Rosella Edwards, 2007.

SAMUEL M. PEABODY. Few men are better known in this section than he whose history we will now proceed to trace. He is one of the pioneer settlers in Stonington Township, and has here spent the greater part of his life.

His farm is located on section 35 and is one of the best-conducted and best-equipped places of the neighborhood. The youngest in a family of ten children, Mr. Peabody was born January 21, 1820, in North Stonington, Conn. His parents were Samuel and Lucy (Bread) Peabody. The father was born in the same place in 1774 and was reared on a farm in Connecticut.

Our subject relates that he can remember his father's telling about the battle of Stonington Point, during the Revolutionary War, in which he was a participant. Samuel Peabody, Sr., was married in his native State, where he remained until 1839. At that time he came with his family to Christian County. At the same time about fifteen other families emigrated from Connecticut and settled near one another in this county, forming what was called the Stonington Colony.

Our subject's father, who was a Deacon in the Baptist Church, was of English descent. His great-grandmother, Elizabeth Starr, was the first female child born in New England. He passed away when seventy-eight years of age. His wife was born in 1776 and died in 1842, a short time after coming to this county. She was the first person buried in the old Stonington Cemetery, and by her side now reposes the earthly remains of her husband and deceased children.

Of the children of Samuel and Lucy Peabody the following is recorded: Ellen B. died in Christian County when thirty-five years old. William A., who died in his seventy-ninth year, came with one of his brothers to this county in 1837. He was called by the title of Captain, as for a number of years he was Captain of a military company here.

Dr. Elias, born in 1812, is still living, and is one of the oldest physicians in the county, though he has now retired from professional life; Amos P., a resident of Taylorville, was born in 1815; our subject is the next in order of birth; Mary died when about twenty-eight years of age; Elvira and Lora died in Connecticut; Martha died at an advanced age; and Nancy died in the Nutmeg State, after having reached four-score years.

Samuel Peabody, whose name heads this sketch, passed his boyhood on the old farm in his native State, and received his education in the common schools there. In 1839. he came with the family to this county, making the greater part of the journey by water. After becoming of age, he farmed a part of his father's estate until the latter, on his death, left him a farm of one hundred and sixty acres. This has since been the home of Mr. Peabody. In the early days of his residence in this county, Decatur was a very small town and Taylorville was unknown.

In 1846 our subject married Miss Jane Burnam, of this county, who died about eight years later. In 1857 Mr. Peabody married Miss Maria Parkhurst, a native of Connecticut, who is still living.

For twenty years our subject served as a School Trustee and was a School Director and Township Trustee for a number of years. For nearly a-half century he has been a Deacon and Trustee in the Baptist Church.

In his political views he is a Republican. The confidence of one and all is fully bestowed upon him, and he well merits the goodwill and friendship which are freely his. He is an honorable and upright man and his course in life is one of which he may justly be proud.

 

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