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McLean County, Illinois
History and Genealogy



A. B. HOBLIT, Cashier of the National State Bank of Bloomington, is a native of Illinois, and was born in Fulton County on the 10th of March, 1844. He is the son of Mahlon S. and Mary A. (Thomas) Hoblit, the father a native of Ohio and the mother of Pennsylvania.

The early life of Mahlon S. Hoblit was employed in mercantile pursuits in this State, partly in Canton and partly at Atlanta. He was busily employed until 1857, when he was obliged to abandon active business on account of his wife's failing health, and removed to Minneapolis, Minn., where his life terminated in 1868; the mother survived her husband for a period of seventeen years, dying in Atlanta, Ill., in 1885. Both were members of the Baptist Church.

The father was one of the first men in Illinois to advocate the principles of the Republican party, taking an active part in its organization here, and was also greatly interested in the establishment of schools and churches and the success of temperance. His latch-string always hung out to the wayfarer, and the poor and needy found in him a stanch friend and helper.

The parental household of ten children was broken into by the death of four of its members; the living are as follows: Almeda, Mrs. McCrary, lives in Little Falls, Minn.; Isaac N. is a dealer in live-stock at Minneapolis. Minn.; Alvin B. is our subject; Lizzie Z. resides in Minneapolis; Mahlon S., Jr., is farming near Monticello, Minn., and Daniel S. is also living near the latter-named place; John T., who died of fever at Stone River [ed., Stones River] while in the army, was first to enlist in the three months' service at Minneapolis; he was city editor of the Tribune of that city; Isaac N., who was also in the army, was injured at the first battle of Bull Run, but recovered, and at the expiration of three months they both re-enlisted, and served until the close of the war; they belonged to the famous Minnesota First.

The subject of this sketch remained at home until seventeen years old, and after his parents went North, attended the Minneapolis High School. He subsequently engaged as a clerk for his brother, a merchant in Canton, Ill., where he remained two years. He then enlisted in Co. B, 8th Ill. Vol. Inf. [ed., 8th Illinois Volunteer Infantry Regiment], and during a service of thirteen months participated in several engagements and skirmishes, being at the siege and capture of Spanish Fort, Ft. Blakeley and Mobile, Ala. [ed., Passing of Forst Morgan and Gaines]. He escaped injury, and after receiving an honorable discharge returned to Canton and clerked for the dry-goods merchant, A. C. Babcock. The following eighteen months were spent in Sauk Center, Minn., with the firm of Moore & McClure, who were engaged in merchandise and milling. He then came to Atlanta, Ill., and was connected with the banking house of Frank, Hoblit Bros. & Co. from 1867 to 1873. Then, on account of ill-health, he accepted a position as Deputy Collector of Internal Revenue at Springfield, Ill., but after two years resigned. Then, in company with a few friends he assisted in the establishment of the Farmer's National Bank at Pekin, Ill., where he occupied the position of Cashier three years. He was then concerned with others in the organization of the National State Bank of Bloomington, of which he is a stock-holder and Director, and has been Cashier since 1878.

Mr. Hoblit was married in 1876, to Miss Annie E., daughter of Capt. Isaac and Elmira (Neal) Keys, who were natives respectively of Illinois and Kentucky. To Mr. and Mrs. H. there have been born two sons Edward M. and Harris K. The residence of our subject and his family is located at No. 315 East Chestnut street, and they enjoy the friendship and society of the cultured citizens of Bloomington. They are both members of the First Baptist Church. In politics Mr. Hoblit uniformly votes the Republican ticket, and is an honored member of the G. A. R. He is also a member of the K. of P. Lodge, and has been Past Chancellor. His energy and enterprise have placed him in the front rank with the business men of Bloomington, and he is the substantial supporter and encourager of every measure tending to its credit and welfare.

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), 286. Transcribed by Judy Rosella Edwards.


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