ROBERT SWAN, of White Oak Township, has a good farm of 120 acres on section 28. He has been a resident of Illinois
since the spring of 1854. He was born in Millfield, Northumberland Co., England, in 1823, being the son of Robert
and Elspeth (Mitchell) Swan. His father was born in 1790, and was married in his native England, where he spent
his entire life, dying Aug. 22, 1859. Both parents were members of the Presbyterian Church. The mother of our subject
died in about 1825, and Robert Swan, Sr., was the second time married, in 1833, to Mrs. Donaldson. Of the first
marriage there were born three children—Elizabeth and Andrew, who died in infancy, and our subject, the only one
living. Of the second marriage there were four children—James, Nicholas, Thomas and William. The second wife of
Robert Swan, Sr., died April 26, 1867, when sixty-two years old.
Mr. Swan of our sketch remained under the parental roof until he attained his majority, receiving a common-school education. After emigrating to this country he located first at Otsego County, N. Y., where he was employed as a farm laborer for two years. He then went into Harrison County, Ohio, and was there married, Jan. 25, 1855, to Miss Martha Hilton. They located upon rented land, which our subject cultivated for two years, and then came to Illinois, working again by the month in this county. This was one year prior to his marriage. He subsequently rented land for five or six years, then purchased forty acres in White Oak Township, which constitutes a part of his present homestead. To this he subsequently added eighty acres more, and now has it all under good cultivation, with a fine residence, good barns and all necessary out-buildings. He has been industrious and economical, and richly deserves his present reward.
Mrs. Swan is the daughter of Thomas and Agnes (Swan) Hilton, natives of England, the father born July 17, 1790, and the mother in Northumberland County, in 1791. After their marriage they came to America in about 1818, settling in Washington County, Pa., where they remained for six years. They then removed to West Virginia, and in 1832 to Harrison County, Ohio. The mother died there in 1864, and the father in the fall of 1866. They were most worthy and excellent people, and devoted members of the United Presbyterian Church.
Mr. Swan is engaged in general farming, in which he has been quite successful. He is greatly respected in the community, being the friend of law and order, and has contributed his full share towards its growth and prosperity.
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), 490. Transcribed and annotated by Judy Rosella Edwards.