SPRINKLE, who is engaged in agricultural pursuits on section 19, Watson Township, was born in this township, Effingham
County, November 26, 1848, and both his paternal
and maternal ancestors were of German descent. His parents, Michael and Mary (Auld) Sprinkle, were natives of Pennsylvania. The father was a farmer by occupation
and followed that pursuit throughout his entire life. About 1830 he left the Keystone
State and emigrated Westward to Ohio. He there made his home until the autumn
of 1841, which year witnessed his arrival in Illinois. The trip Westward was made by team. He
located in what is now Watson Township, Effingham
County, trading his farm in Ohio for two hundred acres of unimproved land,
mostly covered by timber, on section 30. Erecting a log cabin, he there made his home for a few years, but subsequently
removed to Ewington, where he purchased a gristmill and engaged in milling for a time. Later he traded his mill
in Ewington for a tract of partially improved land on section 19, Watson
Township, which he further developed and cultivated
until 1856. In that year he went to Mason and engaged in carrying on a hotel for about three years. On the expiration
of that period he removed to Watson, where he spent a year, and then returned to his farm on section 19, where
he carried on agricultural pursuits until 1885. In that year he again took up his residence in Watson, where he
lived a retired life until called to the home beyond. He died December 18, 1891, and his remains were interred
in the Watson Cemetery. He was a member of the Baptist
Church for many years and led an upright, honorable
life. In politics he was a stalwart Republican, but never an office-seeker. From a business point of view his life
was also successful, and he gained a comfortable competence. Mrs. Sprinkle died October 25, 1882. She also held
membership with the Baptist Church.
worthy couple had a family of eleven children, namely: Mary J., wife of Edward Loy, a retired farmer residing in
the village of Watson; James H., a farmer residing near Grand Island, Neb.; Elizabeth, who died in childhood; Jarret,
who died in 1861; John, who follows farming in Watson Township; William, whose death occurred in 1839; Catherine,
who died in 1872; Martha, wife of American Cronk, a farmer of Watson Township; Caroline, wife of W. L. Funkhouser;
Vincent, who is living on the old homestead; and Michael of this sketch.
now take up the personal history of Michael Sprinkle, who is well known in this community as one of its leading
citizens. He did not receive very excellent educational privileges, but managed to acquire a good knowledge of
the practical branches, and by reading, experience and observation in later years has made himself a well-informed
man. The first school that he attended was held in a log house. He was early inured to the labors of farm life
and gave his father the benefit of his services until he had attained his majority, when he began working on the
old homestead for wages. He was thus employed for nine years, at the expiration of which time he removed to the
farm on which he is now living, and which he has made his home continuously since.
On the 1st of September, 1872, Mr. Sprinkle was married to Miss Laura Ward, daughter of Robert and Lucinda Ward.
Six children graced this union, four of whom are living, while two died in infancy. Those who yet survive are Arthur
L., born June 15, 1874, and now engaged in teaching school; Mary L., born June 11, 1876; Willie J., born July 23,
1880; and Charles L., born August 11, 1882. The family have a pleasant home and are well-known people of this community.
Socially, Mr. Sprinkle is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and in politics is a supporter of the Republican
party, but has never been an aspirant for public office, preferring to devote his time and attention to his business
interests. He carries on general farming on section 19, Watson
Township, where he owns two hundred and seven acres
of valuable land. His fields are well tilled and yield to him a golden tribute in return for his care and labor.
He is recognized as one of the leading agriculturists of the community.
Portrait and Biographical Record of Effingham, Jasper and
Richland Counties Illinois, Containing Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens, Governors
of the State, and the Presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887), p. 198. Transcribed by
Judy Rosella Edwards.