HENRY W. ELLINGTON. In a country which was originally inclined to swamp land the manufacture of tile has been one of its most important industries, and among the firms which have made this a specialty, is that of Stoops & Ellington, of Colfax, in Martin Township, this county, of whom the junior member is the gentleman whose name stands at the head of this sketch. The works were established in 1880, and have been carried on in an eminently successful and praiseworthy manner. It is probable that millions of rods of the products of this manufactory now underlie the soil of McLean County, and probably as many more will be laid in a corresponding number of years.
Mr. Ellington of this sketch is a native of the State of North Carolina, and was born in Randolph County on the 2d of July, 1848. He is a son of Henry and Elizabeth (Eubanks) Ellington, who emigrated from North Carolina to Indiana when their son Henry was five years of age. They settled in Shelby County, where the subject of our sketch grew to manhood, receiving the advantages of a common-school education. In 1872 Henry Ellington started out in life for himself, and desiring to see something of the Prairie State, came into this county, and locating in Blue Mound Township, turning his attention to farming. He pursued this for six years following and then became interested in a tile manufactory, after perceiving that this industry would probably be of great benefit both to the farmers around and to himself.
Mr. Ellington first located his factory in Padua but was afterward persuaded that Chenoa would be the better point for operations. He remained in Padua until 1879, then formed a partnership with Justus Castle, and with him established the Chenoa Tile Works, which they operated together for two years. Mr. Ellington then disposed of his interest in the business and established a livery stable in Chenoa, which he carried on in connection with farming until the fall of 1884. He then came to Colfax, and purchased a half interest in the tile works with which he is at present connected. These now have a capacity of half a million tile annually Their machinery is of the most approved pattern, and 6,000 feet of steam pipe assists in facilitating the business. The boiler and engine are of fifty-five horse power, and in short everything about the factory is calculated for doing the best work in the most expeditious manner. They have a good home market for all they can produce. The works are conveniently located on the Kankakee branch of the Illinois Central Railroad, which affords excellent shipping facilities.
The marriage of Henry W. Ellington and Miss Alice Stoops, of McLean County, was celebrated at the home of the bride's parents in Blue Mound Township, in 1874. Mrs. E. was born in Fulton County, Ill., June 22, 1856, and of her marriage with our subject there is one child, Emma Elleanor, born Dec. 4, 1875. The pleasant residence of the little family is located on Grove street, and they enjoy the society of a large circle of friends and acquaintances.
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), 501. Transcribed and annotated by Judy Rosella Edwards.