ANDREW J. JOHNSTONE, Supervisor of Dale Township, claims it as the place of his birth, the date
thereof having been Oct. 28, 1850. His father, Dr. Andrew Johnstone, was a native of Dumfriesshire, Scotland, born
on the 21st of May, 1800, and possessed all the substantial and worthy traits of the typical Scottish character.
The father of our subject was educated in the schools of Edinburgh, and at the age of eighteen years determined
to emigrate to the New World.
After reaching American shores he proceeded directly to the young and rapidly growing State of Ohio. He was a man of fine abilities and had taken a scientific course of study in his native country, which he had afterward reduced to practice, and after his arrival within the bounds of
the State mentioned, accepted a post as civil engineer in the military district of Ohio, being in the employ of Gen. McArthur, a large landholder in that tract.
After two or three years' residence in this country Andrew Johnstone returned to his native Scotland, and decided to enter upon the study of medicine. After pursuing a three years' course under the best of instruction he returned to America, and locating near Chillicothe, Ohio, became associated in partnership with Gen. McArthur, and while engaged in the practice of medicine gave all his leisure time to the pursuit of farming, of which he was very fond, and took great pleasure in witnessing the growing and ripening of grain, the pleasant sight of domestic animals, and everything that appertained to the pursuits of agriculture.
Dr. Johnstone lived in Ohio until 1840, and then setting his face further westward, came to the Prairie State, and located upon the site of what is now the city of Bloomington . Here he rented a tract of land which is now included within the city limits. He was one of the first to break the sod in that vicinity, and carried on farming and stockraising for about five years thereafter. He then entered a tract of Government land in Dale Township, on section 14, and purchased a small frame house near Hudson, fifteen miles distant.
This he removed with oxen to his land, and moving his family into it, established them comfortably and made a permanent settlement, where he remained the balance of his days, departing this life on the 31st of August, 1873. He did not resume the practice of medicine to any extent after coming to Illinois, but was considerably engaged in civil engineering and surveyed a large portion of the land in the county. He superintended the improvements on the farm, and at the time of his death had his land all enclosed and under a good state of cultivation.
Dr. Andrew Johnstone, the father of our subject, was married in his native Scotland, to Miss Jane Carlyle. She was a native of Dumfreisshire County [Dumfrieshire], in Scotland, and was born on the 17th of May, 1804. She, with her husband, is still living, and retains her mental faculties to a remarkable degree. The parental household consisted of three children, Jane and Andrew J., the subject of our sketch, being the only ones living; Mary is deceased.
Mr. Johnstone of our sketch was the youngest child of his parents, and spent the greater part of his childhood and youth upon the homestead farm. He pursued his primary studies in the district school, and subsequently attended Wesleyan University [Illinois Wesleyan University] at Bloomington. Although fond of study and reading, he has always had a love for the peaceful occupation of agriculture, and to this has devoted the greater part of his life.
He is also engaged in breeding draft horses, and cattle feeding quite extensively. At the death of his father, he took charge of the homestead which he now owns and occupies, and upon which he has made all needed improvements. The family residence is tasteful, convenient and comfortable, and he has a good barn, with all necessary out-buildings and farm machinery.
The subject of our sketch was married on the 28th of October, 1875, to Miss Dora Karr, also a native of Dale Township, and who was born April 16, 1858. Mrs. J. is the daughter of Thomas J. and Elizabeth (Lowe) Karr, a sketch of whom appears on another page of this volume. Mr. and Mrs. Johnstone have only one child living, a son—Guy Carlyle. Lizzie, the only daughter, who was born March 15, 1877, died on the 6th of January, 1880.
Mr. J. is Republican in politics, is highly respected as a business man, neighbor and citizen, and is serving his second year as Supervisor of Dale Township.
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), 435. Transcribed by Judy Rosella Edwards.