BAIN, a respected resident of Bloomfield Township, where he was born
December 28, 1821, is one of the oldest native-born citizens of Johnson
County now living within its borders and is a son of one of its
earliest pioneers, James Bain. He was a native of Randolph County, N.
C., and his father, who is supposed to have borne the same name as
himself, was a native of Ireland, who had emigrated to America and
spent his last days in North Carolina.
The father of our subject came to Illinois in the prime and vigor of young manhood, and after his marriage, in whut is now Hardin County, came to Johnson County in March, 1809, and was one of the first pioneers to settle in this region. He bought a tract of Government land on section 33, Bloomfield Township, and rented a cabin that had been built for a temporary shelter and was made of
poles or small logs. In that humble dwelling his son, our subject, was born. In a few years Mr. Bain built a substantial log house and resided in it until shortly before his death, when he went to spend his closing days with his son Isaac. The maiden name of his wife was Elizabeth Pankey and she was born in North Carolina, a daughter of William and Mary (Blewett) Pankey. She died on the home farm at a venerable age, having been the mother of thirteen children, of whom ten grew to maturity.
Our subject was brought up under pioneer influences, and as at the time of his birth the county was still in its primitive condition, he may well be said to have grown with the growth of the county. For many years there were no railways, and the towns on the Ohio River were the nearest markets. All grass was cut with a scythe, the modern mowing machine being unheard of, and grain was cut with a cradle and threshed with flails or tramped out by horses. There were no fanning mills to winnow the grain, the way then being for one man to turn the grain from the measure held quite high while two other men would fan the air with a blanket.
Mr. Bain lived with his parents until he attained man's estate and then worked as a carpenter two years. When the Mexican War broke out he entered the service as teamster, accompanying the troops to Mexico, and he acted in that capacity seven months. He was honorably discharged and returned home to resume the occupation to which he had been bred. After marriage he entered a tract of Government land in Bloomfield Township, and in the comfortable log house that he built he and his bride commenced housekeeping. He worked diligently and his well-directed labors were rewarded by a substantially improved farm, on which he resided in happiness and comfort for nearly forty years. Since the death of his wife he has made his home with Preston W. McFatridge.
In 1849 our subject was united in marriage with Miss Malinda C. Hall, a native of Hardin County and a daughter of Kinson M. Hall. In her he found a faithful and loving wife, who was a true helpmate and contributed her share to his prosperity. She closed her eyes in death July 10,and the memory of her many virtues abides with those who mourn her loss. She and our subject were blessed with six children: Olie H., Enorah A., Jerome A., Charles F., Sidney C. and Luretta L.
transcribed by Nan Starjak
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