Lee County Biography

Otis Timothy
China Township


Otis Timothy, who resides on Section 1, China Township, near the village of Franklin Grove, Lee County, is an early pioneer of this county, having come here on the 2nd ofMarch, 1837. He was born in Williamstown, Hampshire County, Mass., August 30, 1812 and is a son of Elkanah and Clarissa (Power) Timothy. His family have been residents of the New England States for several generations. Mr. Timothy received a common-school education, which, in the days when he was young, was not a very liberal one. He was reared upon the farm and in 1830 went to Niagara County NY, to which place his parents had removed the year previous, and where they made their home during the remainder of their lives. The father died when sixty five years old and the mother at the age of 37, after having reared a family of seven children, four sons and three daughters.

Our subject is the second-born and the only one of his father's family to come West. As before stated, he came to this county in 1837, and took up a claim on which he still resides, and when the land came into the market, purchased 80 acres. He has ever since given his attention to agriculture and has increased his real estate to 120 acres.

Mr. Timothy was married in 1838 to Sarah L. daughter of Cyrus and Louisa (Andrus) Minor. She was a native of Lebanon, Madison county NY, the date of her birth being April 1, 1820. Her parents were also natives of NY, her father being a joiner by trade. She is the oldest of seven children. Her father has two children by a previous marriage, one son and a daughter, and her mother, who had also been married before, had one son, byt hte name of A.R. Norton. The parents of Mrs. Timothy came to this county, December 1, 1876 (can't be right maybe should be 1836 - he died in 1846) and settled in Franklin Grove, where her father pursued his trade and also carried on farming. Here they died, the father on March 3, 1846 and the mother, September 27, 1839.

Our subject and his wife have been the paretns of 8 children - Charles January 3, 1849 (should be 1839) married Persis E. Coats, and is a farmer near Springfield IL; Andrew who was born December 9, 1842 married Dalla Reed and died near Louisville KY; he was a farmer and left one son and a daughter. Clara born January 8, 1845 married Henry A. Black and resides in Austin IL; John, born May 13, 1847; Inez A. June 24, 1849 married Michael Kennedy, editor of the Dixon Sun; Daniel R. February 6, 1852, married Flora Taylor and resides at home; George O., born May 9, 1854 married Florence Leadham of Clinton Iowa; Hattie M. September 19, 1859 is the wife of Nathan A. Whitney of China Township.

Mr. Timothy has lived a remarkably temperate life, never indulging in intoxicating liquors of any kind and is remarkably well preserved, looking many years younger than he really is. His wife is also hale and hearty and together they are a good illustration of the results of a sober, honest and upright life. He is a man who is prompt in the fulfillment of his obligations, and is well known for his integrity and honest dealings in all business matters. He has spent his entire life as a farmer and has also dealt considerably in cattle. He relates many interesting incidents of the early days when the settlers did their marketing at Chicago, it then requiring 8 days to reach that place. Wheat was then only 35 cents a bushel and other farm products in proportion. Mr. Timothy has never taken a very active interest in politics, but usually votes the Republican ticket. His wife is a consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

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