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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, p246.  Transcribed by Judy Rosella Edwards, 2007.
REUBEN WILKINSON is one of the best-known citizens of Taylorville, and a history of Christian County would be incomplete without the life record of this worthy man. His energy and determination have made a success of his life, and it is with pleasure that we present to our readers this account of him. He was born in Kentucky, but when a small boy accompanied his parents to the prairies of Illinois, so that nearly his entire life of seventy years has been intimately connected with the development and prosperity of this section of the State. His boyhood days were indications of his after years, and, early learning the value of a dollar, he was not slow to develop a trait for money-making, and to that end he has devoted most of his time. His business ability was soon recognized, and for nearly half a century he has been classed as one of the successful financiers of this county. Not having the advantages afforded by the schools of the day for academic studies, his education is mostly of a practical kind; and though his attention has been fully engrossed by business cares, the years of application have had such an effect upon him that no little thought and attention are given to the affairs of his friends and neighbors as well as to his own. Probably no man in the county is of a more helpful nature than he.

When yet a young man, Mr. Wilkinson married Miss Hester Pratt, a native of England, and unto them have been born two children: George C. and Emma J., wife of George P. Nerrington, a banker of Edinburgh. He has not stood aloof in investing his means in such measures as would develop the resources of his home and city, but has given liberally. The present coal interests are largely dependent upon him for development. The fine flouring plant of the Ruth Mills owes its existence to him. It was erected in 1867, at a cost of $27,000, and since then the firm of Price & Wilkinson has done an extensive and successful milling business. Illustrative of the boldness of his business methods, he, not content to market the mill products near home, shipped his fine flour to the world's milling center, Minneapolis, and there secured a market for much of his surplus goods. He has probably been financially interested in more enterprises than any other man in this locality, and when he has had full control, or his advice has been closely followed, disaster has not overtaken any of his business ventures.

Mr. Wilkinson is an enthusiastic advocate of Prohibition. Not only by precept, but by example as well, has he advocated temperance. He has never sought public office, preferring to devote himself to the more congenial commercial life. He has a rugged nature the diamond in the rough but is warm hearted and true. Of a genial, social nature, he has hosts of warm friends, who esteem him highly and delight in his successes. His home is the abode of hospitality, his estimable wife being a lady of many excellencies of character, and having the happy faculty of making her guests feel at ease.


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