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McLean County, Illinois
History and Genealogy



CHRISTIAN GINGERICH, a prominent farmer of Allin Township, is pleasantly located on section 8, where he is following his chosen calling in an intelligent and successful manner, and pursuing the life of a peaceful and law-abiding citizen. He is a representative of that valued German element which has so materially assisted in developing the resources of the Great West, being a native of the German Empire, and born Oct. 28, 1820. His parents were Michael and Barbara (Heinanan) Gingerich, natives of the same country, the former born in 1789, and the latter ten years later. They were married in 1816, and the father followed farming pursuits all his life. Both parents died in their native land, Michael Gingerich in 1854, and the mother thirteen years previously, in 1841. They were members of the Mennonite Church, and the parents of seven children, namely: Jena, Barbara, Catharine, Christian, Jacob (deceased), Margaret and Andrew.

The subject of this history remained in his native country until he was thirty years of age, and sailed for America in the spring of 1850. He landed in New Orleans, and proceeded at once to Butler County, Ohio, where he was employed by the month on a farm. Four years later, on the 4th of March, 1854, he was married in the Buckeye State to Miss Elizabeth Miller, and they immediately came to Illinois and located upon rented land in this county. In 1865 Mr. G. purchased 120 acres, and is now the owner of a half section, upon which he has made fine improvements and which has become valuable. He has given much attention to the raising of fine horses, and also purchased and sold in this line, which business has yielded him a handsome income. Upon first coming to Illinois he was without means. There was little market for produce, and this was far away, he having to haul his grain to Bloomington. He was, however, blest with good health, and in due time overcame the various difficulties which beset him. Mrs. Elizabeth Gingerich departed this life on the 5th of September, 1865, leaving two children, John and Daniel; one died in infancy unnamed. He was married the second time, Sept. 7, 1866, to Miss Catharine Gingerich, and they have become the parents of seven children Christian, William, Ellen, Edward, Emma, Bertha and Joseph A. The family residence is a substantial two-story building, and the farm is supplied with a good barn and all other modern improvements. Mr. and Mrs. G. are connected with the Mennonite Church, of which our subject has been a minister for the last thirty-two years. He has been very successful in his ministrations, and still preaches every Sunday. Politically he is independent, aiming to cast his vote for the best man.

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), 478. Transcribed and annotated by Judy Rosella Edwards.


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