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McLean County, Illinois
History and Genealogy



CHARLES E. BISHOP owns and occupies a beautiful farm of 160 acres finely located on section 29. Mr. Bishop is a native of McLean County and was born and reared on the homestead of his father, where the latter first located after becoming a resident of the Prairie State. The birth of our subject occurred Jan. 23, 1841. His childhood and youth were spent after the manner of most farmers' boys until he had attained to years of manhood. He had received careful home training and a fair education in the district schools. At this time, the war coming on, he was one of the first to volunteer his services to aid in the preservation of the Union. In common with hundreds of others he responded to the first call for troops but family matters prevented his entering the service until August, 1862. Mr. Bishop enlisted in the 94th Ill. Vol. Inf., Co. B, under command of Capt. McFarland. The regiment first proceeded to the southwest and from there to the Gulf States. Our subject was employed in detached service and consequently did not come in direct contact with the enemy. Much of the time he was engaged in driving the ambulance, and at the battle of Prairie Grove, Ark., received the body of the first Union man who was wounded at that point who had to be hauled away, and the first one shot outside the ranks. Our subject left his wagon and ran through the thickest of the fight to rescue his comrade. He also transported the first man who died, of Company A, to Rolla, Mo. Arrangements had been made by the company before leaving that the dead should be returned to their homes, and in accordance with this our subject accompanied the body spoken of from Springfield to Rolla, Mo., a distance of 120 miles. In due time Mr. Bishop acted as Orderly. He served bravely and faithfully until the close of the war and was mustered out at Galveston, Tex., July 27, 1865. Before his enlistment his younger brother, William J., had entered the service, and at the Battle of Jackson was wounded by a gunshot which passed through his head from the side of the nose to the base of the brain. This wound, however, did not prove fatal. The victim recovered, returned home, and is now Deputy Sheriff of this county.

At the close of the war our subject returned home to Randolph Township, and on Jan. 11, 1866, was united in marriage with Miss Frances Lake, at Heyworth, this county. Mrs. B. was born in Sangamon County, Ill., Sept. 2, 1841, and from the time she was fifteen years of age was a resident of McLean County. Her father, John Lake, a farmer, was a native of Virginia and removing to this county, departed this life in 1872. The mother, a native of Virginia, is still living in Heyworth at the advanced age of sixty-seven years. Mrs. Bishop is a careful and systematic housewife and takes a pardonable pride in her handsome home, whose neatness and attractiveness within is due to her own refined tastes and industry. By her marriage with our subject she became the mother of eleven children, eight living, as follows: Netta, Edward, Albert, Frank, Ella, Jessie, Ora and Ethel.

The parental history of our subject is closely identified with that of Randolph Township. His father, M. L. Bishop, who is now spending his last days in Heyworth, with the exception of a few years has been a resident of the county since 1841. In 1883 he made a trip to California. He at one time owned a large body of land in this township. The mother, formerly Miss Matilda J. McRoberts, was of Scottish ancestry and parentage and is now deceased. The parental household included four children; William, whom we have before spoken of, shouldered his musket at seventeen years of age and went to fight for his country; Emeline, Mrs. Merryman, and Mary, Mrs. D. O. Myers, are now deceased.

[SOURCE: Portrait and biographical album of McLean County, Ill. : containing full page portraits and biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens of the county, together with portraits and biographies of all the governors of Illinois, and of the presidents of the United States. (Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887). Transcribed and annotated by Judy Rosella Edwards.]


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