Lee County Biography

Charles Trainer
Ashton Township


All honor is due to the brave veterans of the late war, who hav since done good service in peaceful pursuits in various walks of life, and have helped to increase the wealth and prosperity of the country saved by their valor. Our subject was one of that great and glorious army that preserved the Union, devoting some of the bestyears of his early manhood to fighting for the Government under whose flag he has spent the most of his life. He is a farmer by occupation, and has a farm on section 22, Ashton Township, that compares in all respects with the best in the vicinity.

Mr. Trainer was born in Lower Canada, July 4, 1839 a son of John Trainer, who was a native of Ireland. After coming to this country, he had settled in that part of Canada where his son was born and he subsequently started for California in the days of the god discovery and it is supposed that he died on the way, as he was never heard from again. His wife whose maiden name was Ann Hagan, also of Irish birth, died in Brandon Vt.

Our subject passed his boyhood in Canada, whence in 1856 he crossed the border into NY and when the Civil War broke out he was living in St. Lawrence County. In October of that year he offered his services to his adopted country, enlisting in Co H 60th NY Inf. and heserved with credit throughout. His efficiency as a soldier and his courage were put tot he test in the big battles of Gettysburg and CHancellorsville, in many skirmishes with the enemy, and in the numerous engagements in Gen. Sherman's famour "March to the Sea." He was often on detached service in the brigade pioneers, and from Atlanta to the seas was a brigade forager.

After his experience of life on Southern battlefields, Mr. Trainer returned to St. Lawrence Co and after a few months came to Ogle County IL in the spring of 1866. A year later he removed to Lee County and has since been a resident of Ashton Township, with the exception of four years in Ogle county. His life-work has always been farming, and he has made a success of it. He has 240 acres of excellent land, in a fine condition as to tillage and is amply provided with buildings and all the conveniences. He is a busy man, is proficient in his calling, a good manager and stands well in the township as to his credit in money matters and his reputation in general. He has taken an active part in political affairs and has thrown his influence on the side of the Republican party. His war record is commemorated by his connection with the Gen. Hewitt Post, G.A.R. of Franklin Grove as one of its most respected members. He has taken part in local affairs as Highway Commissioner of Ashton.

During his residence in Ogle County he secured a most excellent wife by his marriage with Emily L. Plantz a native of Nashua Twp., Light House Point, Ogle COunty IL and a daughter of one of its pioneer families. These five children have been born - John E., Ruth E., Frank who died when about 3 years old, Minnie A and Nellie A.

Source: Portraits & Biographical Lee County 1892 Pg 303

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