CHRISTIAN W. NAFZIGER, a retired farmer now living in the village of Stanford, this county, was born in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, on the 28th of May, 1819. He is the son of Christian and Elizabeth (Fisher) Nafziger, and his father, born in 1867, died in March, 1819, leaving a widow and five children. The mother, born in 1788, after the death of her husband emigrated to the United States with her family, and died three years later in Illinois, in September, 1854. The family lived one year in Ohio.

Our subject preceded the balance of his mother's family to America, coming here in 1846, landing in New York City on the 22d of September, whence he went to Butler County, Ohio. He was employed as a farm laborer in that State for a period of eight years, and in the meantime was married to Miss Elizabeth Ehresmann, March 15, 1849.

She was born in Hesse-Cassel [ed., Hesse-Kassel], Germany, in November, 1823, and came to America in July, 1842, where she and her sister joined their father and two brothers, who had already been here three years, and located in Butler County, Ohio. Her father died one year after her marriage. His family consisted of two sons and three daughters, of whom Barbara married Mr. Berck; Frederick married Miss Emma Jacobs; Christian is deceased; Elizabeth, of our sketch, and Ellen, who married Jacob Musleman.

A few years after their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Nafziger came to Illinois, in 1854. Mr. N. rented land the first year and then purchased eighty acres, to which he afterward added a like amount, and beside this, which comprises the homestead, has 120 acres within one and a half miles of the village of Stanford.

In 1878 he engaged in the lumber business in Stanford and was thus occupied for five years, at the end of which time he sold out and retired from active business. He has been a hard worker in his time, and his possessions are but the just reward of his early industry.

Mr. N. became connected with the Masonic fraternity in 1877, being a member of Allin Lodge No. 605 [ed., probably Stanford Allen Lodge No. 605], and is a warm supporter of the principles which he learned to admire long ago.

He is a member in good standing of the Mennonite Church, of which he has been a liberal and cheerful supporter, and politically is a reliable Democrat. He is held in the highest respect in this community for his usefulness as a citizen and his excellent personal traits of character.

Mr. and Mrs. Nafziger became the parents of six children, the record of whom is as follows: John H. married Miss Amelia Nafziger (a cousin); Christian F. married Miss McWilliams, and is living in Allin Township; Eliza M. became the wife of Henry Linker, of Tazewell County, this State; Gustoff A. married Miss Birtha Hauter, and lives in Tazewell County; Lena E., Mrs. George Wright, is a resident of Stanford; William J., married Miss Martha Lamb, and is located in Allin Township.

Mrs. Elizabeth Nafziger departed this life on the 21st of February, 1884, of consumption. She was a lady greatly beloved by her husband and family, industrious, cheerful and affectionate, a good wife and loving mother, and at her death mourned by a large circle of friends and acquaintances. She was a sincere Christian, a member of the Mennonite Church, and by her daily walk and conversation exerted a good influence over her household and all who enjoyed her acquaintance. Her memory is held sacred by her husband and family, who sustained in her death an irreparable loss.

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




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