Near the quaint, sleepy village of Newville, Pennsylvania, there is, in Prospect Hill Cemetery, a stone marker bearing this inscription:
"In memory of Susannah, wife of Christopher Wyke, died 1787, aged 40 years; also Christopher Wyke, died 1817, age 77 years; Margaret, second wife of Chr. Wyke, died Sept. 1823, aged ninety years; George, son of Chr. Wyke, died Dec. 17, 1825, aged 44 years; Sarah, daughter of George Wyke, died October 11, 1826, aged 16 years."
The cemetery plot is quite small and another stone on the same plot is in memory of two children, the grandsons of Christopher Wike. It is quite probable that these stones were erected several years after the deaths, with the remains possibly having been removed from a previous site.
CHRISTOPHER WIKE, (the surname is spelled variously, Wike, Wyke, Weick, Wick. Christopher's will is signed "Wick," but his son and all succeeding generations used the Wike spelling.) is the first known ancestor of the later Pike County Wikes. According to family legend, Christopher Wike was born about 1740 in Switzerland and came, as a young man, to Pennsylvania. It is probable that he came to America in 1768, on the ship "Minerva" from Rotterdam, lasat from Portsmouth. Rupp's "Thirty Thousand Pennsylvania Imigrants" lists a Johan Christopher Weick as a passenger on that ship.
At any rate, Christopher Wike met and married Susannah Baer/Bear in Lancaster, PA and served with the Lancaster County Militia in the 1770's. His only son, George Wike, was born in Cumberland County, where the father owned a farm near Big Spring and followed his trade of blacksmith and also farmed. Following the death of his first wife, Christopher Wike married Margaret (Maiden name unknown) and became the father of four daughters.
GEORGE WIKE, born 1781, was married in 1803 to Mary (Polly) Essig in Big Spring, Cumberland County PA. They became the parents of nine children. George Wike served in the Ohio Militia during the War of 1812 and returned to Pennsylvania at the end of the war. He died in 1825, at the age of 44, leaving his widow and nine children, the eldest twenty-one and the youngest four years old.
Of the four half sisters of George Wike, little is known, except that Elizabeth Wike married Joseph McKey/McKill; Susannah Wike married Jacob Failer; the other daughters were Catherine and Sarah Wike. All five children of Christopher Wike are remembered in his will, with George Wike being the obvious favorite.
In the late 1830's and the 1840's, the Wike family including George Wike's widow, Mary (Essig) Wike, and seven of her nine children, emigrated to Adams and Pike Counties IL. At the time of their emigration, all the children of George Wike were married except David Jesse Wike, the youngest.
The Wike siblings did not all come to Illinois at the same time. Over a period of about ten years, seven settled in and around Barry. Several of the brothers were skilled weavers and had been involved in the manufacture of woolen goods for several years in Pennsylvania prior to their move to Adams County, Illnois where they conducted a woolen manufacturing business from 1838 to 1844.
In 1844, the Wike brothers, David Jesse, George Jr. and Joseph, with a relative, P. Grubb, erected a woolen mill on Section 23, Barry Township (known locally as Weber Springs). The Wike Woolen Mills was the first of its kind in Pike County and contained the first spinning machine in the State of Illinois. The business continued successfully for half a century, changing shareholders and partners from time to time, but always with at least one Wike involved. George Wike Jr., built a home near the woolen mill, and others of the Wike clan established homes near Barry.
JOHN WIKE, the oldest son of George Wike Sr., was born in 1804; he married Jane McCachen, and was the father of three daughters, Mary Essig, who married James Keyle; Elizabeth Wike, who married Joseph Parker; and Rebecca Wike, who married Henry Griffin. This branch of the Wike family remained in Pennsylvania. John Wike is listed among the Civil War Soldier on a marker at Gettysburg.
JOSEPH WIKE, second child of George and Mary (Essig) Wike was born in 1806. He came to Pike County in 1837 and that same year married Abigail (Mills) Myers. Both are buried in (Old) Barry Cemetery. They were parents of ten children:
1. & 2. Sons died in infancy.
3. William Byron Wike, married Eliza Hamm and fathered at least five children.
4. Marietta Wike b 7 Jul 1844. Married and lived near West Ely, MO
Marietta Wike has been discharged from the asylum as completely cured and capable of taking care of herself. I will say to those who have slurred me, you do not know how soon you may be in there yourselves. The doctor said it never be my superiors or equals that would slur me. My inferiors would always do it.
Contributed by Virginia Gorton Bonne - [Barry Adage, 11 Oct 1894, p4, c1]
5. Joseph Taylor Walker Wike, who married Sarah Hicks and had at least one daughter.
6. Josephine Wike, who married James Dobbs and had two children, William and Alice Dobbs who married George Doran.
7. Eliza Jane Wike, who married Matthew H. Nichol; both are buried at Barry Cemetery. They had five children: Ella, George, Carrie, Alfred and Maud Nichol.
8. Alfred Baker Wike who married Ida M. Hadsell. They lived near Barry on the Wike homestead. Their children were Edna Ray who married Charles Peck; Floyd Wike, Carrie Wike; Lena Wike, who married Ralph Snyder; and Letha C. Wike.
9. Mary Magdaline Wike who married Thomas Hull.
10. Ada Rebecca Wike 6 May 1859-8 Oct 1933 buried in Old Barry Cem
For a few weeks past Miss Aida Wike, daughter of the late Joseph Wike, has exhibited signs of insanity, and last Tuesday her actions were such as to leave no doubt of her affliction, she at times being violent in her demonstrations. Wednesday she was taken to Pittsfield and examined before Judge Doocy, when the jury were not long in pronouncing her insane. She will be committed to the asylum, where one of her sisters is confined with the same disease.
Contributed by Virginia Gorton Bonne [Barry Adage, 15 Nov 1889, p7 c3]
GEORGE WIKE JR. born 1807. Married Catherine Ann Grubb in PA. They were parents of 4 children, only two of whom reached adulthood; David Scott Wike, born 1834 did not marry, lived and practiced law in Pittsfield, elected ito Congress three times; served as First Secretary to John Carlisle Secretary of the Treasury under President Cleveland. Rebecca Jane Wike born 1836 married Piny B. Fuller and bore him five children. Scott and the fullers are buried in Barry.
Catherine Ann (Grubb) Wike died in 1839 in Quincy. George Wike married the second time to Mrs. Laura Ann (Stevens) Crouch. By this marriage George Wike fathered four children: George Wike III who married Rachel C. Baird and had two children. He was a wagonmaker in Barry in the 1880's. Sarah A. Wike married George W. Perry; Geddes M. Wike married Dena Whitehead; Laura Ann Wike married T.M. Martin and had dight children; Harry G. Martin, who married Mary Schee; Rosa Martin; Wallace Martin; Eva Alzina Martin who married Robert L. Maxwell; George Wike Martin who married Margaret Gunsman; Sarah Blanche Martin who married Earl Schultz; Bertha Martin, who married Winifield PEters and Scott Martin.
Laura Ann (Stevens) Wike died in 1851; the following year George Wike Jr. married Mrs. Alzina C. (Leggett) McDaniel. There were no children from this marriage. Prior to his death George Wike Jr. built a tomb or mausoleum on the side of a hill behind the Wike Woolen Mills, where he was buried following his death in 1880. Alzina Wike died in 1901 and she too was buried beside him. Some years later a daughter had her parents remains moved to Park Lawn Cemetery.
SARAH WIKE, fourth child of George Wike Sr., died at age 16 and is buried on the family plot in Newville PA.
ELIZA WIKE, fifth child of George Wike Sr. born 1812 in Stark Co. Ohio married William Guss in 1841 in Cumberland Co. PA. He had been previously married and had two children. The Guss family came to Pike County in1848, settling on Section 4, Barry Township. William and Eliza (Wike) Guss had seven children. Mary (Essig) Wike, mother of Mrs. Guss, who had emigrated to Pike Co in the early years to be with her children, died at the Guss home in 1862 at the age of 80 years. Widowed in her early forties and left with nine children, the eldest barely 21, Mary (Essig) Wike successfully reared her family, several of who contributed a great deal to the early years of Barry and Pike County.
WILLIAM WIKE, sixth child of George married Hannah M. Heagy. They came to the Barry area in 1849, with three children, two others having died prior to their emigration. Their children were: Sarah A. Wike whomarried first Nathan Selby and second to William G. Hubbard and had several children.
Mary (POLLY) WIKE, the seventh child of George married William Myers in 1842 in PA. In 1848 together with her mother, Mary (Essig) Wike and a brother, Polly (Mike) Myers came to Pike Co to join her husband, who had proceeded her with his parents. After living in Hadley and New Salem Twp. for several years, William and Polly settled on Section 34, Barry Twp. They were parents of five children, tow of who were born prior to thei trek to Pike Co: Rebecca Lydia Myers, who married Thomas E. Gorton, a Civil War veteran; their children were: Charles H.; William M.; George; Carroll; Lewis Wike; and Fred Gorton. The second child of Wm. and Polly Myers was George Wike Myers, who married Mary Jennings and had five children: Scott; Grace; George; Ada; and Charles Myers. The third child was Mary Myers, who married M. Harvey. The fourth child was DOuglas Myers who married Emma McCurdy; their children were Alberta and Marhur Myers. The fifth and last child of Wm. and Polly Myers was William Myers Jr. 1855 whomarried Pauline Bright. They had three children.
DAVID JESSEE WIKE
ninth and youngest child of George and Mary (Essig)Wike, was born in 1821 in PA. In 1841 he came to Adams County and two years later moved to Pike County, where he joined his brothers in the manufacture of woolen goods. In 1847 he married Drucilla Orr of Kinderhook. About 1855 David sold his interest in the Wike Woolen Mills and settled on Section 27, Barry Twp. where he reared his family and lived out his years. David J. and Drucilla weer the parents of six children. Thomas Orr Wike; Dallas C. Wike; William Myers Wike; Mary E. Wike; Charles Scott Wike and Louis Angle Wike.
THOMAS ORR WIKE was born 1848, the first child of David J. and Drucilla (Orr) Wike. He married Almira Cockran and they wee the parents of six children: Elizabeth Elnora, Heorge Henry, Burl Hamilton, Charles OWen, Glenna Marie and Thomas.
DALLAS C. WIKE, second child of David J. and Drucilla (Orr) Wike was born in 1853 near Barry on the Wike homestead. Following elementary schooling, he attended Bryant's Commercial College at St. Joseph MO. In 1879 he arried Anna Eliza Gorton, adopted daughter of John D. and Lydia (Jackson) Gorton. They were parents of seven children: John David, Dallas Aldo, Thomas Carson, Mary E., Max Verne, Joe Ross and Zoe Floss Wike. Dallas C. and Anna E. (Gorton) Wike made their home on a farm in Section 22, Pleasant Vale Township, the land being a part of the original Jackson holdings which Anna (Gorton) Wike inherited through her adoptive mother. Both are buried at Morey Cemetery, adjoining this farm and which was probably a part of the original Jackson land. This farm is presently owned by Kyle L. Wike, a grandson of Dallas C. and Anna (Gorton) Wike.
WILLIAM MYERS WIKE, third child of David J. and Drucilla Wike was born 1855 near Barry. He married Lucy Hart; their children were Ellis, Bertha, Louis and Ida Wike.
MARY E. WIKE, fourth child of David and Drucilla was born in 1858. She married James D. Gordon; they were parents of three children; Mabel Gertrude, Jennie Maud and Frances Gordon.
CHARLES SCOTT WIKE - fifth child of David and Drucilla was born 1864. He ws killed in a railroad accident in 1899.
LOUIS ANGLE WIKE - sixth child of David and Drucille born 1866, married Margaret Godfrey. They had two children - Charles and Dorthy Wike who married George Brown.
JOHN DAVID WIKE was the first child of Dallas C. and Anna E. (Gorton) Wike. The second was Dallas Aldo Wike and the fourth Mary E. Wike. None of these three had children.
THOMAS CARSON MIKE was the third child of Dallas and Anna Wike. He was born in 1884 near Barry, but grew up on the family farm on Section 22, Pleasant Vale Twp. In 1907 he maried Chloe Decker, a daughter of Asher and Bessie (Gustine) Decker. They were parents of three children; Dallas Carson, Carolyn Maxine and Kyle L. Wike.
MAX VERNE MIKE was the fifth child of Dallas and Anne and was born on the family farm near New Canton. He married Frances Gard and the family lived in Barry. Max worked for many years for the Glandon Telephone Company. Max and Frances were the parent of three sons who attended Barry schools; Max Spence, Roger C. and John David Wike.
JOE ROSS MIKE and ZOE FLOSS WIKE were twins and las born to Dallas and Anna Wike. Joe Wike married Wilma Gard, who was a sister of Frances (Gard) Wike, his brother's wife. They wee the parents of three -- twins, Phillip and Phyllis and Tarmara.
DALLAS CARSON WIKE first child of Carson and Chloe (Decker) Wike, was born in 1907 near New Canton. He married Lillian Tieman (5 June 1938) and they lived in Springfield. They had two sons; Scott and John.
CAROLYN MAXINE WIKE born 29 Dec 1913 was a teacher prior to her marriage to Clay Weaver of Pittsfield. They had a son Steven Clay Weaver.
KYLE L. WIKE the third child of Carson and Chloe was born in 1917 near Baylis, but grew up in the New Canton area. He graduated from Illinois College at Jacksonville and was for many years, a chemist with the research division of Continental Grain Company near Libertyville IL. Kyle Wike married Mavis Turnbaugh of Pittsfield and they are the parents of Carol and and Carson Kyle Wike.