Lee County Biography

GEORGE HILLS SQUIRES


Dixon lost a representative citizen and a progressive business man when George Hills Squires was called from this life in September, 1907. In all respects he measured up to high standards of manhood and citizenship and thus at his passing he left to his family the priceless heritage of an untarnished name. He was born in 1843, in the old historic town of Bennington, Vermont, his parents being John N. and Emma L. (Bigelow) Squires, the former a manufacturer. He was descended from two of the most prominent of the old colonial families, the Brewsters and the Bigelows. Following the acquirement of a public school education in his native city, George Hills Squires came to the middle west thinking to have broader business opportunities and advantages in the comparatively new, but growing section of the country. He was nineteen years of age when he arrived in Burlington, Iowa, where he engaged in the wholesale drug business, remaining in that city until 1873. He next went to Troy, New York, where he continued in business until 1886. Two years later he arrived in Champaign, Illinois, where he continued for three years on the expiration of which period he came to Dixon, where he established a paper and wooden box business in which he remained to the time of his death in September, 1907. Throughout his entire life he was accounted an energetic, progressive business man, applying himself closely to all the duties which devolved upon him, meeting every obligation and keeping every engagement. His commercial honesty too was above question and the success which he achieved was the merited reward of persistent effort.

On the 10th of September, 1872. Mr. Squires was united in marriage to Miss Eleanor Dement, a daughter of Colonel John Dement, who came to Dixon about 1840 and engaged in the real estate business. He was also in the government employ in charge of the land office at an early date. Later he turned his attention to manufacturing interests and was thus closely identified with the material growth and progress of this section of the state to the time of his death, which occurred in January, 1882. He was a veteran of the Black Hawk war and a pioneer settler, who aided not only in the suppression of the red men, but also in the more active constructive work which has brought about the present day prosperity and progress of the county. His wife was a daughter of Henry Dodge, who was the first governor of Wisconsin, while he and his son Augustus C. Dodge of Iowa and also a half brother, Louis Linn, all served in the United States senate at the same time. The family is one of distinguished prominence in the history of the middle west. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Squires were born a son and two daughters: Mrs. Marie Loraine Hoffer, now residing in Washington, D.C; Miss Christine, who is at home with her mother and George R., who is engaged in manufacturing in Troy, New York.

The family are all members of the Episcopal church to which Mr. Squires likewise belonged. He took an active and helpful part in its work and was serving as treasurer and vestryrian at the time of his death. His life exemplified his Christian faith and belief which found expression in many good works. His sterling traits of character made his name an honored one wherever he was known and although he did not seek to figure prominently in public affairs, the community in which he lived profited by his worth and his activities.

Transcribed by Karen Holt - 1914 History of Lee County Illinois Vol 2 by Frank E. Stevens.

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