ASA H. MOORE, proprietor of the Bloomington and Normal Horse Railway, is a highly respected and well-known citizen
who has contributed a generous share toward the business interests of the city. This railway which he is now conducting
in a business-like and systematic manner, is a source of great comfort and convenience to those who would otherwise
be obliged to go on foot to their places of business or employ a more expensive method of conveyance.
Mr. Moore was born on a farm among the New England hills, in Worcester County, Mass., in October, 1820, being the son of Asa and Sabra (Lovell) Moore, natives of the Bay State. His father was a man of modest means, and spent the greater part of his life in farming pursuits. Our subject was reared to habits of industry, received a careful parental training, and obtained a fair education in the public schools. In early life he evinced that active and energetic disposition which has since served him so well and placed him in an enviable position among his fellow-men. While still young he began to lay plans for the future, and was ambitious to do something and be somebody in the great world. At the age of nineteen he was employed as conductor on the Western Railroad, running from Boston to Springfield, Mass. Later he assisted in running trains which conveyed the first passengers from Worcester to Springfield, one of whom was the famous Maj. George W. Whister, who was then chief engineer of the road, and who afterward attained a wide reputation as builder of the railroad from St. Petersburg to Moscow, in Russia, being peculiarly adapted to railroading and having more than ordinary knowledge of what was required to build and conduct a system successfully and profitably.
The subject of our sketch made rapid progress in the confidence and respect of his superior officers, and was soon placed in charge of a train as conductor, running out of Boston on the Western Railroad, and becoming widely and favorably known for his skill and reliability. He continued on that run for a period of eleven years, then came West to La Porte, Ind., where he was employed as engineer on the Michigan Southern, from which position he soon rose to be Assistant Superintendent with headquarters at La Porte, Ind., at which place he remained until 1854. He was then induced by George Bliss to come to Bloomington, where he was appointed Assistant Superintendent of what was then the Chicago and Mississippi, but now the C. & A. R. R., Richard Morgan, now of Illinois, being Superintendent. Mr. Moore continued in this office until the resignation of Mr. Morgan, when he succeeded to the general superintendency of the road, a position which he filled in an able and creditable manner for three years. In 1869 he purchased the Horse Railroad of Bloomington, of which he took possession Jan. 1, 1870, and which under his management, as we have said, became one of the great enterprises of the city. It is suitably equipped in every particular, and extends in every direction, so as to meet as far as possible the requirements of the local traveling public. It is conceded by all to be one of the best railway systems of its kind outside of Chicago, and Mr. Moore has spared neither time nor money to perfect it and keep it in repair.
The marriage of our subject occurred in the spring of 1848, in Plymouth, Mass., the maiden of his choice being Miss Nancy B. Washburn, and they became the parents of two children — Thomas W. and Mary C., the latter the wife of E. E. Maxwell, of the firm of S. A. Maxwell & Co., of Chicago.
The residence of Mr. Moore is pleasantly located on North Main street, where with his excellent wife he enjoys the companionship of the cultured people of the city. He is a gentleman of fine personal appearance, and his genial, courteous disposition has secured for him hosts of friends wherever he is known.
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), 194-195. Transcribed by Judy Rosella Edwards