Alfred C. Campbell
HON. ALFRED C. CAMPBELL, a distinguished veteran officer of two wars, was formerly one of the leading farmers of this county, and, as the proprietor of a large and finely improved farm, is still identified with its agricultural affairs although practically living in retirement in his pleasant home at Moweaqua. He is a son of one of the early pioneer families of Central Illinois, is noted in its history as the third child born of while parents in Sangamon County and is thought to be the oldest white man living who is a native of that county. Our subject was born July 22, 1819, and comes of good Revolutionary stock and Scotch ancestry. The first of the Campbell family to come to this country from his native heaths in Scotland was the great-grandfather of subject, who came here in Colonial times and settled in South Carolina. His son Jeremiah was the next in line. He was born in Scotland and emigrated to South Carolina, and went from there to Tennessee in the early years of its settlement, before it became a State and when the Cherokee Indians held full sway there. He located at Hampton, Carter County and spent the remainder of his life there. He did valiant service in the Revolutionary War as a soldier under the gallant Gen. Francis Marion. His wife was a Miss Marr.
The father of subject, John Campbell, was born Nov. 24, 1790, in Carter County, Tenn. He was of a thoughtful and studious turn of mind, and made the best of his opportunities to obtain an education. In 1817 he came to Illinois, which was then a territory, and first located in Madison County. He was there married to Levina Parkinson, and in 1819 he started with a team for the unsettled wilderness of Sangamon County. He was one of the first to locate there, and though the land was not then in market he made a claim on Lick Creek, and after building a log cabin for the shelter of his family, he entered actively upon pioneer work that lay before him, of evolving a farm from the wild country in which he had settled. He was of an energetic disposition, very capable, and by hard and unremitting labor acquired and improved a large tract of land, and became one of the most substantial men of his township. A man of his calibre [sic] was naturally called to positions of trust in the administration of public affairs, and among other offices he held that of Justice of the Peace many years. Possessed of considerable learning himself, he had a just value of a good education, and did all he could to advance the educational interests of his township by building a hewed log house on his own land for school purposes, the school being taught on the subscription plan. Politically he was a stanch Democrat. He died in 1874, thus closing a long and well-spent life, and leaving behind him the legacy of an untarnished name that is held in reverence by all who knew him.
When Mr. Campbell became a pioneer of Sangamon County, there were but few white settlers in Illinois, the Indians still retaining their old hunting grounds to a great extent. Kaskaskia was the capital of the State, Springfield had not been founded, and St. Louis, which was but a village at that time was the nearest market for the settlers to sell their products and obtain supplies. The people were home-livers, having to subsist on what they could raise and on the game such as deer, wild turkeys, etc., which were abundant. The wives and daughters of the pioneers had to card, spin and weave the wool and flax raised by the men, to make cloth for wearing material and other purposes. The father of subject lived to see a great change wrought, not only in the face of the country, but in the mode of living and the customs of the people.
The maternal grandfather of subject was William Parkinson a native of Tennessee. His father, Peter Parkinson, was born in England, came to America in Colonial times, and spent his last years in Carter County, Tenn. William Parkinson was reared in Tennessee, and came from there to this State in territorial days. He was a pioneer of Madison County, whence he went after a few years to Lafayette County, Wis., of which he was one of the first settlers, and there he died in the course of time. His wife was a Miss Russell. The mother of subject was a worthy type of the pioneer women of Illinois who did so much to help their fathers, husbands and sons in reclaiming this State from the wilderness. She carefully reared a family of six children to the habits of industry and right living, of whom our subject is the eldest. The names of the others are William, Jeremiah, Joseph W., Peter C., and Caroline.
Born in the early years of the settlement of this State, our subject grew up amid pioneer surroundings, and was educated in the primitive schools of the olden times, which were taught in log houses that were furnished, with rude slab benches, and greased paper pasted over the opening made by the removal of a log from the side of the building served instead of glass to light the interior. He was studious, and under such able masters as Daniel McCaskill, John Calhoun, who afterwards became famous in the Kansas border troubles, and Rowan Morris, he obtained a good practical education, including a good knowledge of mathematics and surveying. Thus well equipped mentally, be utilized his education by teaching several terms after he attained manhood. He selected farming as his principal life-work, however, and was engaged at that in Sangamon County until he came to this county in 1851, when he chose a desirable location on section 4, township 13 (now Flat Branch Township), range 2. He developed a fine farm of four hundred and ten acres and also gave his attention to the mercantile business, opening a store on his homestead, which he conducted there until the village of Moweaqua was founded in 1856. He then removed his business thither, and carried it on here until 1859. Returning then to his farm, he made it his place of residence the ensuing five years, though much of that time was spent in fighting for his country on Southern battlefields. Since the war he has lived practically retired at Moweaqua, though superintending his farming interests, as he still retains four hundred acres of fine farm land in Moweaqua and Flat Branch Townships.
As before mentioned, Capt. Campbell has displayed his loyalty to the Government and his patriotism by service in two wars. After war was declared with Mexico he enlisted June 10, 1846, in Company D, Fourth Illinois Infantry, commanded by Col. E. D. Baker. He was elected Lieutenant of his regiment, and went with it from Alton to Jefferson Barracks, St. Louis, whence, after a few weeks' drilling in army tactics, it was dispatched to Mexico by way of New Orleans. Ascending the Rio Grande River to Camargo, from that point the regiment marched back to Metamoras, and from there to Victoria, where our subject and his command were placed under Gen. Scott, and bore active part in the bombardment of Vera Cruz and the battle of Cerro Gordo. At Tampico, the captain dying, our subject was left in command of the company, and acted in that capacity until the expiration of the term of enlistment, and returning then to Illinois, arrived about a year from the time of leaving the State.
Capt. Campbell's experience in the war with Mexico made his services valuable in the great Civil War that followed in the United States several years later, when he volunteered in October, 1861, and went to the front as Captain of Company E, Thirty-second Illinois Infantry, commanded by Col. John A. Logan. For three years he was with the Army of the Tennessee, and during the latter part of the war his regiment was a part of the Seventeenth corps. The Captain saw much hard campaigning and fighting in Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina. He faced the enemy in the battles of Ft. Donelson and Shiloh, was active in the sieges of Corinth and Coldwater, and fought in the engagement around Vicksburg, Jackson and Kenesaw Mountain, and was with Sherman on his famous "March from Atlanta to the Sea," taking part in the various battles and skirmishes on the way. He was mustered out of the service in February, 1865, a war-worn veteran, whose record as a soldier was bright and reflected credit on the military of his native State.
Capt. Campbell cast his first Presidential vote for Martin Van Buren in 1840, and for more than half a century has been a Democrat of the deepest dye. His party honored him by electing him to the legislature in 1880 to represent the Thirty-third Senatorial District, including the counties of Shelby, Effingham and Cumberland. A flattering majority of his fellow-citizens' votes sent him to the General Assembly, and he fulfilled his duties while there with characteristic fidelity and public spirit. He was at one time Justice of the Peace, being an incumbent of that office two terms. In his social relations he is connected with the Masonic fraternity, and is now the oldest charter member of Moweaqua Lodge, No. 180.
May 3, 1838, Capt. Campbell was married to Polly, daughter of Peyton Foster, and a native of Kentucky. Their happy wedded life of nearly twenty years' duration was brought to an end by the death of the faithful wife January 9, 1858. She was the mother of these six children: John P., a resident of Spokane Falls, Wash.; Elizira E., wife of James W. Clark, of Moweaqua; Sarah C., wife of Edward Segar, of Decatur; Leonard W., a resident of Dallas. Tex.; Alfred C., now deceased, who married and left five children; and George W., deceased. Our subject was again married June 17, 1859, to his present estimable wife, formerly Miss Jennie Hurt, a native of Montgomery County, Ohio, and in her he has a true companion and devoted helpmate.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Robert E. Cannon
The village of Tower Hill is the seat of some thriving business establishments, prominent among which is the store of Mr. Cannon, dealer in lumber, furniture hardware and agricultural implements. His life affords a striking example of what may be accomplished by a determined and tireless spirit, even with nothing as capital save vigor of body and activity of mind. A self -made man in a wide sense, Mr. Cannon has gained wealth, but while doing so he has remembered that there are others in the world as well as himself, and has treated those with whom he has had dealings in the most straightforward and honest manner, carrying out the Golden Rule in all his dealings. A native of Alabama, Mr. Cannon was born September 3, 1844, and at the age of seven years accompanied his parents to Arkansas, where he remained twelve years. There he received a common-school education, which he has since broadened by careful reading on all important subjects. In 1864 he came to Illinois, and locating in Montgomery County, passed the ensuing six years there. During four years of this time he was engaged in the lumber business for his father in the town of Butler, and he was also in partnership with his father and brother in the dry-goods business at Irving for one and a half years. Thus early in life he acquired a thorough knowledge of business affairs, and gained that judgment and decision which characterize his transactions now.
In 1872 Mr. Cannon came to Tower Hill and embarked in his present business, which he is still successfully prosecuting. He has an extensive and lucrative business and occupies a prominent place among the business men of Shelby County. He controls three hundred and twenty acres of land, but makes his home in a cozy residence in the village. Peace, comfort and happiness have come to him from his marriage, which was celebrated in Butler, Ill., October 12, 1868. The bride on that important occasion was Miss Julia A. Stewart, a native of Montgomery County, Ill. The union has been blessed by the birth of nine living children, as follows: Ella, Lillie, Alice, Arthur, Walter, Lizzie, Elmer E., Flora and Myrtle. One child died in infancy.
In politics Mr. Cannon is a stanch Democrat, and has represented the people in the Town council for twelve years. He has also served the township as Clerk and School Director. He and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, in which he has filled some of the offices. Mr. Cannon, during an honorable career as a sagacious, enterprising business man, has displayed those solid traits of character that are needful to the attainment of good fortune in any calling, and in his dealings with all either in a business or social way he has ever shown himself to be man of honor and truthfulness, and with his good wife he enjoys the full trust of the entire community. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
James W. Carey
James W. Carey, a prominent resident on section 25, Big Spring Township, Shelby County, was born in Clinton County, Ohio, February 15, 1862. Elias Carey, his honored father, was a native of Virginia, where he was born April 23, 1814, being a son of John Carey. In early life Elias Carey learned the trades of the silversmith and blacksmith, and in 1837 he decided to make a home of his own and chose as the woman in all the world best pleasing to his eyes, Jane Moon, who was born in Martinsville, Ohio, November 26, 1819.
After marriage the parents of our subject made their home in Martinsville, and in 1851 removed to La Grange County, Ind., where they lived upon a farm, and afterward resided for some time in Cincinnati, Ohio, and later in Martinsville, Ohio, whence in 1867 they emigrated to Illinois and settled in Big Spring Township. Here they purchased land which was but partially improved, that is it had upon it a log cabin and a few acres of the land was broken. At the date of his death, which occurred in 1875, Elias Carey owned some one thousand acres of land, had built a fine brick residence and made other valuable and substantial improvements. Thus had the poor tradesman through his own enterprise, and by the wealth hidden in the soil of the Prairie State, become a rich landed proprietor. He was a man of sterling Christian character, and belonged to the Society of Friends. In the beautiful homestead which was built by him his bereaved and venerable widow now resides.
The ten children of this excellent couple were, Mary E., who married Richard Jones and resides in Zenia, Ohio; Sarah M., who married David Hazely and died in Richmond, Ind.; Hannah M., who became the wife of Jesse Mendenhall and died in Shelby County; Martha E., who married Jesse A. Gibson, and John II., both of whom reside in Neoga, Ill.; Rachel, who is now Mrs. Francis M. Hackett and resides in Jamestown, Ohio; Anna, who is now Mrs. William C. Bain and makes her home in Marion. Ind.; Isaac M., who resides in Shelby County; Irene, the wife of Alfred Lindley, who also lives in Shelby County, and James Walter, the subject of this sketch.
He of whom we write was united in marriage in April, 1885, with Miss Elizabeth A. Hubbert, who was born in Cumberland County, Ohio. To this happy couple have been born three children - Ethel I., Edith J., and Pearl I. Mr. Carey in connection with his mother, owns and carries on the homestead which contains one hundred and sixty acres of rich and arable land, all in a high state of cultivation.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Prominent in church and political circles and well known as a successful and retired farmer of repute, both as to character and capabilities, is the gentleman whose name appears at the head of this sketch and whose three-score years and ten, worthily lived, have given him the respect of all who know him. He resides on section 35, Shelbyville Township, Shelby County, and is counted among the old pioneers, as his residence in the county dates from 1850.
William Carnes was born in Fairfield County, Ohio, February 9, 1821, his father, Robert, being a native of Ireland, and his mother, Nancy Stewart, having been born in the United States. The father was but three years old when he came to this country from old Erin and his early home was in Guernsey and Fairfield Counties, Ohio. He died in the latter county at the age of sixty-eight years, having been a thorough and respected farmer, and his wife also passed away at the old home at the age of sixty-six. These worthy parents had nine children, all of whom grew to maturity. Their record is as follows: Jane, who was twice married and died at Shelbyville at the age of seventy-one; Thomas and Mary, who both died in Shelby County; Eliza, who died in California; John and Arthur, who died in Fairfield County; William, our subject; Robert, who died in Shelby County; and James, who was a member of Company H, Seventh Illinois Cavalry and was killed in Alabama.
Having been reared on the farm, young Carnes chose agriculture as his life work and on September 12, 1850, he took to himself a partner in life's joys and sorrows in the person of Mary C. Ingman, daughter of Henry and Henrietta (Rigby) Ingman. This lady was born in Fairfield County, Ohio, October 13, 1827, and her parents were Virginians who became early pioneers in Ohio and remained there until their death, the father at the age of seventy-two years and the mother when sixty-five. These venerable parents reared eleven children to years of maturity, namely: William, Elizabeth, Amelia, Otho and Ann, who all died in Ohio; and Sophia, Lancelot and Maria, who died in Indiana; Edmund, who died in Missouri; and Mary C., who became Mrs. Carnes, and is the only survivor.
Less than a month after their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Carnes set out with a team to emigrate from Ohio to Illinois, accomplishing the journey in sixteen days. An elder brother of our subject, Thomas by name, accompanied them with his family. Our subject had been in Illinois in the winter of 1849-50 and purchased some hogs, which he drove to St. Louis and disposed of, and in the spring of 1850 he purchased in connection with a younger brother, James, a tract of one hundred and fifty acres and entered one hundred and sixty more. About thirty acres only had been cleared and a log house had been built, and here the young couple started to make their fortunes and remained there till 1856, when they removed to their present home.
Mr. Carnes has given his attention principally to farming and in time acquired possession of two hundred and forty acres, which he has now divided among his children, who are by name: Josephine, who married B. F. Fraker; Nancy, who married J. L. Thomas; Maria E,, who became Mrs. William Crockett and died in Shelby County; Henrietta, now Mrs. Lewis C. Thomas; Mary C. wife of A. D. Amlin; John W.; James M., who is a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Missouri; and one who died in infancy. A granddaughter makes her home with Mr. and Mrs. Carnes and is their main stay and comfort in their old age. For nearly half a century both of these honored and beloved old people have been members of the Methodist Episcopal Church and for thirty years Mr. Carnes has been Steward and Class-Leader. He is an earnest advocate of the enactment of prohibitory measures against the sale of intoxicating liquors and his influence is always given on the side of Christianity and morality. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Henry C. Carpenter
Henry C. Carpenter, who is highly esteemed and respected throughout the community where he lives, is an intelligent and progressive citizen who gives much thought to the questions of the day. He makes his home on section 18, Ridge Township, Shelby County. His father was Israel Carpenter, who was born in Lancaster, Pa., and his mother, Susan Hess, was probably born in Pennsylvania of German parentage, as was also the father. The father died when about fifty-two years old, the mother at the age of ninety-one years.
The parents of our subject came to Shelby County, Ill., from Delaware County, Ohio. about 1837, and settled in Shelbyville, where they resided for a few months. Later they removed to a point north of Shelbyville near the fair grounds and then made their home in Okaw Township, where the father passed from earth. His widow died at the residence of our subject in Ridge Township some years later. They had eleven children, of whom our subject is the fifth in order of age.
Henry C. Carpenter was born in Delaware County, Ohio. October 1. 1825, and hence was about twelve years old when he came to Shelby County, Ill., with his parents. Here he grew to manhood and spent most of his early life with the exception of four years which he passed in Sangamon County. He was reared upon the farm and has made agricultural pursuits his chief business in life.
The marriage of Mr. Carpenter in Ridge Township, September 30, 1852, brought him as a wife Miss Sarah Downs, daughter of Electious and Mary Ann (Stiffler) Downs. For particulars in regard to the history of this prominent family the reader is referred to the life sketch of J. H. Downs which appears on another page of this volume. Mrs. Carpenter was the fourth in a family of eight children, and first saw the light December 28, 1831, in Washington County, Md. She came to Shelby County, Ill., with her parents in 1845, and here grew to a beautiful and vigorous young womanhood in Ridge Township.
Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter are the parents of nine children namely: George W., who married Mary E. McDonald and died at the age of twenty-two; Electious who took to wife Clara Worthman; Willie who passed away in infancy; James W., who married Sarah M. Jones; Sarah Ann the wife of O. J. Engle; John Alonzo who took to wife Ida Bruner; Ira C.; Mary Ellen, who died in infancy, and Nora J. Our subject filled efficiently and satisfactorily the office of Supervisor of Ridge Township for two terms, and has also been Road Overseer and School Director. He formerly took an active part in political affairs but is independent in his party affiliations. He is liberal in his religious views and interested in all progressive ideas. His splendid tract of five hundred and seventeen acres, most of which is located in Ridge Township bears every sign of the hand of a thorough, systematic and industrious farm manager. The attention of the reader is invited to the lithographic portraits of Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter, which are presented elsewhere in this volume.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Clark H. Carr
Clark H. Carr, M.D., a physician and surgeon of Cowden, was born in Kenawha County, W. Va., August 25, 1834. His parents, John K. and Margaret (Wyant) Carr, were natives of the East, the father being born in Greenbrier County, Va., in 1812, and the mother in Lawrenceburg, Ind., in 1818. The father has been living since 18532 in DeWitt County, this State. The mother died September 1, 1891. Nine of their large family of six sons and seven daughters are still living, of whom our subject was the eldest.
The brothers and sisters of our subject are Violetta, wife of James Darby, a farmer in Minnesota; John, who first married Mary Lloyd and afterwar was united with Ellen Sway, with whose assistance he is now carrying on farming in Sumner County, Kans.; Julia Ann, who was the wife of Stephen Webster, and died in DeWitt County, Ill., in 1872; Isaac L., a farmer near Humboldt, Iowa, who married Mary Day; Mary, who married William Stewart and died in Minnesota in 1871; Jane, the wife of Philip Shellenberger, a farmer who lives in Piatt County, this State; Sarah E., who first married William Stewart, a cousin of her sister Mary's husband and afterward became the wife of George Hitchen, of Gibson City, Ill.; Michael M., who married Sophronia Barr and lives in Piatt County; Leonard S., who married Elizabeth McMann, and resides in DeWitt County, and two children who died in early infancy.
The subject of this sketch accompanied his parents from West Virginia to Indiana, thence to Missouri and in 1852 located with them in DeWitt county, Ill., where the father now resides. He received his education in the public schools of this State and was about twenty-five years old when he began to read medicine. In 1866 he commenced the practice of his profession in Christian County, but in 1873 came to Cowden, where he remained for two years and then went back to his old place in Christian County. In the spring of 1880 he returned to Cowden where he has since remained.
Dr. Carr has been twice married. His first wife was Mary C. Green, who was born in Preble County, Ohio, in 1836, and married the Doctor in Indiana in 1856. One child was born of this marriage, Millard Fillmore, whose natal day was August 18, 1857. On October 31, of the same year, Mrs. Carr passed from earth, and her son was tenderly reared by his paternal grandparents.
The second marriage of our subject took place October 13, 1859, when he was united with Catherine Johnson. She was born December 17, 1833 in Ross County, Ohio. The six children born of this marriage are all living Mary C., born September 1, 1860, is now Mrs. James E. Orendoff, and lives in Hall County, Neb.; Laura E., born January 22, 1863, married Alfred E. Gross, and lives in Davis County, Neb.; Samuel C., born December 4, 1864, is engaged in the study of medicine; Margaret E., born July 2, 1867, married William G. Banning and resides on a farm in Dry Point Township, Shelby County; Ida F., born February 22, 1868, and Catherine J., born April 10, 1871, are at home with their parents.
Dr. Carr has established a fine reputation as a practitioner and enjoys a large and lucrative practice in Cowden and vicinity. He is regarded in the community as the leading physician. He attended lectures at the Missouri Medical College at St. Louis, Mo., at which popular institution he made a creditable record. He has always been a close student and has labored hard to gain the standing which he now holds in his profession. Realizing that old age is creeping on, the Doctor has inspired his son Samuel with the desire to receive the mantle of his sire when he shall drop it, and thus to perpetuate the family name in the profession. The Doctor is a worthy member of Joppa Lodge, No. 706, A. F. & A. M., at Cowden, and a stanch Republican in politics having always voted that ticket, and being regarded as the local leader in his party. In connection with this biographical notice the reader will find a lithographic portrait of Dr. Carr. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Jefferson W. Carr
The name that heads this sketch is that of a gentleman who resides on his farm on section 19, of Prairie Township. He was born in Holland Township, Shelby County, March 17, 1839. He is a son of Elias and Nancy Carr, a history of whom may be found in that of W. U. Carr. Our subject's early training was such as would fit him for agricultural life, having been born and reared on a farm, and naturally being thoroughly well acquainted with such duties. Mr. Carr now owns two hundred and sixty acres of land which it is now hard to believe, was not so many years ago in a crude, uncultivated state. When a lad of but nine years, the parents of our subject were taken away and he thereafter made his home with an uncle, and with other guardians. The thought of the lad without a mother's tender care and a father's counsel, involuntarily arouses our sympathies. In 1861, when the heavens were overcast with the clouds of war, our subject enlisted in Company H, of the Forty-First Illinois Infantry. He was mustered in at Decatur, Ill., and first met fire at Ft. Donelson. After that time he took part in the most desperate and celebrated battles of the late war. He saw men mowed down before the fire of the cannon like swaths of wheat, at Shiloh, Corinth, and that battle whose name is a synonym for the greatest military tragedy, the battle of Vicksburg. After Vicksburg, the regiment in which our subject was re-enlisted and became one with the consolidated Fifty-Third Illinois Infantry. Thus they served until the close of the war, engaged in many skirmishes and being participants in much hard fighting. Mr. Carr was mustered out at Paducah, Ky. He was a private, being proud of the fact that he fought, not for fame, or position, but because of loyalty to his country. He went with the regiment under Sherman in his celebrated march from Atlanta to the sea, thence preceded to Washington and participated in the Grand Review. Our subject had the rare good fortune for one who took part in so many serious engagements, never to have received a wound, to be taken prisoner, or sent to the hospital. After the war, he of whom we write purchased a farm in Prairie Township, where he settled and it is his present home. In 1867, he was married to Matilda Williams a daughter of John Williams, who settled as a pioneer in Shelby County, at an early day. There, Mrs. Carr was born April 18, 1849. Mr. and Mrs. Carr have the good fortune to be the parents of six intelligent and manly sons. Their names are Sherman, Walter, Erven, John, Mahlon and Roy V.
The farm of which Mr. Carr is proprietor, as has been before said, was at the time of his settlement here, new prairie land. It is now in a perfect state of cultivation, and the well tilled fields yield bountiful crops. Several good buildings have been erected on the place. They have a home that is comfortable and commodious, not too good for the use and benefit of the sons that are growing up around their parents, but being of such a character as to cultivate refined, yet strong ideas of life. Politically, our subject is a Republican. His religious preferences are in the direction of the Methodist Episcopal Church in which body he has been a Class-Leader for a number of years. Socially he is a member of John Huffer Post, No. 633 G. A. R.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
William V. Carr
WILLIAM V. CARR, who has been appointed by Uncle Sam to take charge of the postal service at Stewardson, Ills., was born in what is now Dry Point Township, Shelby County, October 9, 1844. He is a son of Elias and Nancy (Siler) Carr, natives of North Carolina and Tennessee respectively. The father of our subject was born in 1804. His father having died in Tennessee, his mother, with a family of four children, three of whom were girls, came to Illinois in 1816. The family first lived one year on Sand Creek Shelby County, they then settled in Dry Point, and were thus the first settlers in that part of the country, and in fact, as early as any who located in the country. Here the father of our subject grew to manhood pursuing farming for a living. He passed his remaining years in Dry Point Township and died in the year 1848. He was a prominent member of the Methodist Church, being a Class-Leader at the time of his death. The mother of our subject came with her parents to the State of Illinois and the family settled in Cumberland, where her father, Benjamin Siler, passed his remaining years. While a young woman she married Mr. Carr, whose death she did not long survive, following him in a few months, her decease taking place in 1849.
The original of our sketch is one of nine children, five of whom are still living, all being residents of Shelby County. Martha is the wife of the Rev. Mr. Middlesworth. Mary married George Huffer. Jefferson W.; John and our subject, William V. was only four years of age when he was left an orphan and his young life was spent with various persons. His sister, Mrs. Huffer, was a foster mother to him for six years which he spent in her household. Educational advantages in those early days were limited and our subject was enabled to attain only the common branches. When there was a school, held in a log house, after he had attained the age of nine years, he was obliged to walk three miles in order to reach it. While a mere lad he was obliged to work his own way, doing whatever he found to do in order to get a living. In these days when children are so tenderly cared for and enjoy the comforts, even among the poorer class, that were considered the most refined luxuries at the time our subject was a boy, it makes one sad to think how little youth he had.
The three brothers in our subject's family, all enlisted and each served faithfully during the Civil War. William V. Carr enlisted in 1863 as a private of Company A., Fifty-fourth Illinois Infantry. He served until the close of the war, being mustered out November 16, 1865. He was a participant in the battles that occurred at the siege of Vicksburg, was with the Red River expedition, and was at the capture of Little Rock, Ark. While near that place, in August, 1864, he was taken prisoner at Batesville, where he remained until January, 1865. He then joined his command at Hickory Station, Ark., where he remained until he was mustered out at Ft. Scott. After the war our subject resumed farming in Prairie Township and continued this occupation until 1888, when he removed to Stewardson, and in April, 1889, was appointed Postmaster. In 1867, the original of our sketch was united in marriage to Miss Deborah Blue, a daughter of Erasmus Blue. She was born in Fairfield County, Ohio. By this wife our subject is the father of one daughter, Drotha, who is bright, intelligent and winsome. Politically Mr. Carr is a Republican in party preference, using his influence and vote in its favor and having all confidence in its platform. He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, and finds much pleasure in recounting with an old comrade, common experiences incident to the war. He still owns his farm of sixty acres upon which is a good tenant, he also has a handsome property in Stewardson.
John Carr, a brother of our subject was born in Shelby County in 1842. He enlisted in 1861, in the thirty-fifth Illinois Infantry, in which he served until 1866, having re-enlisted in the regular army. During his military experience, he was never either wounded or taken prisoner. After the war, he returned to Shelby County and has since been engaged in farming in Ridge Township, where he owns two hundred acres of land in a fine state of cultivation. He invited Caroline Downs to be his life partner, sharing with him its pleasures and burdens. They are the parents of eight children. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
David C. Chase
Age falls upon some men like a gracious benediction at the end of the lesson of life. With whitened hair and measured tread, the venerable aspect of age is an open book in which even the youngest and most thoughtless can read the story of life, whether the experience has been one of adventure, and colored and broidered o'er with romance and tragedy, or whether adopting a fixed principle as a guiding star, the aged man has ever steered his course by its guidance. Our subject has just passed his three-score years and ten, and any one who looks upon his rugged but serene face can see therein that his has been an experience guided by the principles of rectitude and honor; that no matter how frail the superstructure may now be, that the base and foundation is of adamantine firmness; for character never grows old.
David C. Chase is a native of Indiana. His parents, however, both came from the Empire State. His father was William J. Chase, and his mother Eunice (Chamberlain) Chase. They married in Indiana, and settled immediately after their union in Washington County, where they lived and made the journey of life together until death claimed them for its own. Our subject's father was a shoemaker by trade, although he was engaged to some extent in farming, but his preference was for the exercise of the trade that he had learned in youth. Both parents were victims of the cholera, and both passed away in the month of August, 1833. They had six children and of these our subject was the eldest.
The original of our sketch was born in Washington County, Ind., May 25, 1821. Left an orphan at the age of twelve, he was obliged to struggle as best he could for a maintenance. He went to Lawrence County, Ind., and there grew to manhood, learning in the meantime the blacksmiths' trade, which he followed until 1852, and the imagination pictures the smithy at the meeting of the roads, where farmers brought their horses, and over the injured tire of an ancient vehicle, discussed crops and politics and every subject within the ken of the rural mind, "from Homer down to Thackeray, and Swedenborg on hell." The fact remains, however, stripped of fancy, that our subject succeeded in his work, receiving such returns for his labor as to justify him in taking unto himself a companion and wife, which he did June 26, 1845, in Orange County, Ind. His bride was Miss Hannah Hostetler, a daughter of Christian and Elizabeth (Hardman) Hostetler. They had nine children, Mrs. Chase was the seventh in order of birth; she was born in Orange County, Ind., December 1, 1823. In 1852 Mr. Chase and his wife came to Illinois, and settled in Coles County, there living until January, 1853, when they came to Lovington Township, this country, since which time he has here been a resident. He lived on his farm which he had purchased upon first coming here, until the fall of 1885, when with his family he removed to the village of Lovington. He now rents his farm, which comprises one hundred acres of good land, and it brings him in a very good income. Three children have grown up about our subject and his wife. Elizabeth E. is the wife of Thomas Spilker; Francis M. married Miss Margaret Morthland; and David C. took to wife Miss Mary Haley. Three children died in infancy.
Since coming to this State, Mr. Chase has followed agricultural pursuits, and has been reasonably successful in his chosen calling. In politics he has ever taken an active interest, and is an ardent adherent of the Democratic party, having very positive views in regard to the efficiency of the governmental principles and rule of that power. Mrs. Chase, who is a kindly and intelligent old lady, has been a member of the Christian Church since girlhood. Her husband is a Universalist in his belief. Mrs. Chase is a sister of Noah Hostetler, of Lovington, of whom a more extended history can be found in another part of this volume.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
The noiseless and inaudible foot of time has so stealthily passed over the sixty-six years that our subject numbers since his natal day, that he is only aware of its passage by seeing frown up about him sons and daughters who have reached manhood and womanhood, and who have families of their own. At sixty-six a man is in the prime of his vigor, and to hear the little grandchildren pertly telling of things that have come within their young knowledge that are new to the man seems an encroachment upon his rights and perquisite. It is not the years that makes us old. It is the little ones that crowd us. Our subject resides on section 20, in Rural Township, Shelby County, his residence in the county dating from the spring of 1866. He was born in Hampshire County, W. Va., September 6, 1825, and is a son of Obadiah and Sarah (Switcher) Chesshire, who were natives of Hampshire County, W. Va., the mother being of German descent. The parents lived and died in their native State, having pursued the calling of agriculture from their earliest efforts at making a living for themselves. The mother died about 1857, the father following her about 1867.
Our subject is one of fifteen children, of whom twelve lived to reach years of maturity. Two of these, our subject and one sister, Margaret, came to Illinois and made themselves homes. Joseph Chesshire was reared on the home farm where he remained until his marriage, which took place December 4, 1850. His bride was Miss Ruth Lupton who was born in Hampshire County, W. V., April 16, 1831. In the fall of 1855 Mr. Chesshire with his family came to Illinois, first stopping in Sangamon County. The winter of 1855 - 56 was very severe and Mr. Chesshire resolved that he would not stay long in this State, but when spring came and under the fervid sun the spring flowers starred the prairie with a thousand colors, the aspect of the country was entirely changed and he concluded that in so fertile a land he could endure an occasional drawback in the way of a severe winter. They settled in Sangamon County and there remained about four years, then went to Christian County where they staid six years. At the end of this time they came to Shelby County where they purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land from the Illinois Central Railroad Company. The land was then raw prairie, but as the years have passed and the efforts of his labors appeared in fertile fields and orchards of fine fruit trees, it has become a first-class farm, upon which there is a comfortable dwelling that is provided with all the appliances for making life as pleasant as possible.
Our subject and his amiable wife are the parents of eight children, of whom six lived to be grown. They are Frances, Jane, Rachael, Lucinda, Sarah A. and Michael W. Frances is the wife of Samson Shivers; Jane was twice married and now resides in Nebraska; Rachael is the wife of William Heimes; Lucinda was married to John McDonald and resided in Rural Township. Politically, our subject favors the Independent party, although he was originally a Democrat. He has filled several local offices, having been Road Commissioner and also School Director. He is associated with the best men in the township in working for the elevation and improvement of everything that can give tone to the locality. In connection with his biographical sketch the attention of the reader is invited to a lithographic portrait of Mr. Chesshire, presented elsewhere in this volume. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
A well built and attractive house is a monument erected to the honor of the builder, speaking more truthfully than can words, of the dominant traits of his character. If he is thorough, it will be indicated by the firmness of foundation and the quality of lumber that he uses. If he be of an analyzing turn of mind, it will show in the detail, and if he have taste and culture, it will bespeak itself from the ridge pole to the cellar and from the front entrance to the rear. Our subject is evidently one who pleases his patrons in every detail in building, for he is one of the most successful dealers in lumber and house furnishing supplies in Moweaqua, having, previous to engaging in this business, made a reputation for himself as a builder.
Our subject is one of the firm of Berry & Clark, dealers in all kinds of lumber. Mr. Clark has been a member of the firm since it was started, September, 1889. He came to the county in 1854, and with his father, settled in Flat Branch Township. He has since lived in this county, with the exception of six years, extending from 1875 to 188l, at which time he was a resident of Montgomery County, Kan., where he was engaged as a cattle dealer. While yet a lad, our subject learned the trade of carpenter which he has followed for many years. He has erected many of the best buildings both in the township and village of Moweaqua, and in Flat Branch Township. He has been a contractor and builder, and all the best buildings in Moweaqua he has been more or less connected with during construction. Our subject was born in Warren County, Ohio, April 14, 1842. His father, was W. R. Clark, a native of Ohio, and his grandfather was William Clark, also a native of Ohio, and one of the first settlers on the site of what is now the city of Cincinnati, at that time nothing more than a wilderness. William Clark had married while in Ohio, a Miss Rachael Ross. He and his wife lived in Warren County at an early day, and there died, an old man. He was of a Welsh family noted for their longevity. All his life was engaged in agricultural pursuits. His wife survived him and was a second time married, her husband being Mr. Decker, who left her a widow. She then came to Illinois, and died in Mercer County, this State, at the age of eighty-six years. She was of German ancestry.
W. R. Clark was the only son of his parents. He grew up in his native county and when Cincinnati became a village of some importance, and a commercial center for the region about, for a period of eighteen years he drove a six-horse team over the new country from Lebanon, Clarksburg, Milford and Foster Crossing, carrying flour, pork, whiskey and other freight, and bringing back supplies for the general stores in the country towns. In 1854, with his family he moved West, making the journey overland, his household goods as well as his family being conveyed hither by means of teams. They enjoyed camp life during this emigration and after a long trip they settled on a tract of Government land in Flat Branch Township, Shelby County, and the tract which he at that time located upon was never transferred until his death, he having passed away from this life on the farm which he had preempted, September 19, 1889. He was born February 14, 1802, and had become a well known man in this part of the country. He was quiet and unassuming in his personal bearing, but had had an experience that few men, even at that time, had enjoyed. He lived to see the country change from primeval wilderness to one of the richest commercial and agricultural districts in the country. His wife had preceded him, having died April 9, 1881. Her birth occurred December 19, 1806, near Pittsburg. Pa. Her maiden name was Nancy Berger. She and her husband enjoyed fifty-two years of married life.
Our subject is the youngest but one of nine children, now living. Two of his mother's children had died at an early age. He grew up in his native county, enjoying the limited advantages as to education and social life that were to be had at that time. When the first three years' call was made for volunteers to go to the front to quell the rebellion, our subject responded. He enlisted August 14, 1861, in the Seventh Kansas Cavalry, Company F. The Colonel in command being C. R. Jennison, and F. M. Maloney serving as Captain. The regiment in which he served was known as the noted Jayhawkers, and they served in the Sixteenth Army Corps, being engaged in Missouri, Kansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi. Our subject was a participant in the battles of Corinth, Iuka or Tupelo, Oxford, Water Valley and Coffeyville. The regiment was under the general command of Gen. Grant and was the first to penetrate into Oxford, Miss., being in the advance of the main army from Holly Springs to Coffeeville. The original of our sketch during his military experience, was fortunately never seriously injured, but was once knocked off his horse by a spent ball. He was never captured, nor spent a day in a hospital. During all his service he reported every day for duty. He saw much hard fighting during the three years he spent in the army. He veteranized at Corinth, Miss., and became recruiting officer of the regiment. He was honorably discharged at St. Louis, Mo., after three years and seven months of service, in 1864. He had received the honor of being advanced to the position of First Lieutenant of his regiment, and was on special duty as Court Marshal at St. Louis, Mo., for some time. He was also offered the Provost Marshalship in Northern Missouri, but refused to serve.
After our subject's discharge from military life, he returned to Shelby County, this State, and took upon himself the obligations of married life, his wife having been a Miss Charlotte A. Goodwin, who was of English ancestry and birth, having come to the United States when but thirteen years of age, her only kinsman in this country being Dr. Richard Dawson Goodwin, of St. Louis. Mrs. Clark died in St. Louis on May 19, 1871. She was in the prime of life at the time of her taking away. Mr. Clark again married, the second partner of his joys and sorrows being Mrs. Nancy H. Jones, a native of Illinois. She died one year after her marriage, while yet in her young womanhood. The little daughter that she left to be a comfort to her husband, followed her mother when but four years old. By a former marriage, Mrs. Clark was the mother of two children, Eliza J. Brickey, who lives with her step-father, and Charles W. Brickey, who took to wife Stella Henry, now a resident in Moweaqua Township. The lady is a daughter of Ex-Representative Thomas Henry, of Windsor, Ill. Mr. Clark's first wife was a member of the Baptist Church. His second wife was a member of the Christian Church. She was the daughter of Levi Jones, now deceased, a prominent minister at an early day in Montgomery County, Kan. Our subject is an adherent of the Republican party. He is much interested in local as well as national affairs and has been closely identified with all the local offices from Supervisor down. He is a Past Commander of J. V. Cleming Post, No. 363, of the G. A. R. in Moweaqua.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
William J. Clark
To the city-bred man or woman who from childhood has heard of the remarkable progress of the Central States and has been constantly reading of the wonderful improvements made by various pioneers whose names wander promiscuously through the alphabet from A to X Y Z, it seems almost incredible that as late as 1871 large tracts of prairie land were taken up, the land being at that time in a perfectly wild and uncultivated state. While the progress of our country and especially the improvements in its agricultural districts are unquestionable, the fact also remains that the country is one of such magnificent distances that here are yet opportunities for bright and energetic young men to experience pioneer life, although not, perhaps, in the sense in which the settlers of the '30s and '40s experienced it, with its privations, make shifts and entire absence of congenial society. Our subject located on his present farm on sections 21, 28 and 29, of Flat Branch Township, in 1871. It comprises one hundred and sixty acres, and at the time of his purchase was in a crude, undeveloped, uncultivated state, its most luxurious product being that enemy of the farmers - field daisies, with a multitude of other prairie flowers. Before securing this farm he had improved one on section 21, having come to the township and county in 1854, with his father. The latter purchased and improved a new farm, upon which he died.
Our subject was born in Warren County, Ohio, on the 29th of October, 1836. He is a son of William R. Clark, who was born in Hamilton County. His early training was that of a farmer lad, and when he reached manhood, like a majority of young men, he took the most important step of his life, that of marriage, his wife's maiden name being Miss Nancy Berger. They were married about 1830. The lady is a native of Virginia although of German parentage and ancestry. She had come to Ohio with her father and mother when quite young and was reared in Warren County. The original of our sketch, with ten brothers and sisters, came by the overland route with his parents to Illinois in 1854. Their home during the journey hither was in the old-time prairie schooner, and it was after a long and tedious journey that they landed here. They began making their home in the new State on section 21, where the father and mother both afterward died, the former passing away in September, 1889, at the age of eighty-seven years. He was a Democrat in politics and a hearty co-worker in all progressive causes. His wife died four years before her husband, at the age of seventy-nine years.
Our subject is one of a pair of twins. He became of age after coming to this township, and was here married to Ann E. Scott, his marriage taking place in December, 1864. The lady was born in Knox County, Ind., February 1, 1835. She is a daughter of Charles and Sarah (Weidner) Scott, natives of Indiana and Virginia respectively. They met and married in Indiana, where they spent the whole of their married lives. Mr. Scott died in 1844, at the age of fifty-six. Mrs. Scott survived her husband by a good many years, passing away in 1877. She was born in 1796. Both she and her husband were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Mrs. Clark is one of a large family of eleven children. She was reared to womanhood in her county, and there enjoyed very good educational advantages, finishing her school course at Lebanon, Ind. She is the mother of but one child, Charles S., who was graduated at the Valparaiso (Ind.) Normal School, and was later connected with the county offices, holding successively positions in the County Clerk's office, that of County Treasurer and also with the Circuit Clerk. He is now engaged as the operator of a farm, in which he is very successful.
Mr. Clark has for some years past devoted himself chiefly to the raising of horses, mainly roadsters, and has acquired quite a reputation throughout the county for breeding fine animals. Mrs. Clark is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Clark and son are Democrats in politics. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois. . . ." Published by Biographical Publishing Co., 1891, tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Almar M. Collins
Almar M. Collins, A. M., M. D. A bright mind coupled with a desire to do good in the world, has wonderful opportunities for accomplishing a great work for God and humanity. To bend one's energies to the betterment physically and spiritually of his fellow-men and to devote one's talents in this direction is an aim worthy of the brightest intellect. The work which has been done by Dr. Collins, pastor of the Christian Church at Shelbyville, is of lectures on temperance, his exhaustive treatise entitled "Prohibition versus Personal Liberty," his critical examination of the subject of Bible Temperance and his valuable work entitled the "Great Living Issue," have had and will continue to have a vital effect upon the temperance movement while his new Interest Calculator is of real merit and extremely helpful to financiers.
This gentleman, who was born in Buchanan, Mich., May 18, 1844, located in Shelbyville in 1888. His parents, Nathaniel and Caroline C. (Cone) Collins, natives of New York, reared a family of seven children. Two sons grew to manhood, our subject and Frank N., who was for many years a druggist, first in Chicago, Ill., and afterward in Detroit, Mich. He was living in Detroit at the time of his death, which occurred January 29, 1887. The two daughters of this family were Mary A., now the wife of James M. Crane, general agent of the Pacific Insurance Company, having headquarters at Cleveland, Ohio; and Emma A., unmarried. The parents of this family were married at Plymouth. Ind., and settled at Buchanan, Mich., where the father followed general merchandising for several years, subsequently engaging in the hardware trade, being also for several years a Justice of the Peace and esteemed a fair lawyer. He was an earnest member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and for fourteen years was Superintendent of the Sunday school.
Nathaniel Collins was a staunch Republican in his political opinions and a party leader, his advice being sought on all occasions and his judgment being highly esteemed. He began as a poor man, but was successful in business and amassed quite a fortune. The finest business block in Buchanan, Mich., was built by him and he was president of a large manufacturing establishment, besides being prominent in all public enterprises and in every matters pertaining to the welfare of the city. He was a good public speaker, and on occasions when the pastor of the church was absent, the pulpit was well filled by Mr. Collins. He was born February 26, 1815, and died October 31, 1875. His widow who survives him, resides in Cleveland, Ohio. She was born October 26, 1822, and is a sister of the late Hon. Gustavus Cone, of Wisconsin.
The boyhood of our subject did not last long as his active mind did not allow him to be satisfied with childish pursuits. His earnest Christian parents stimulated his desire to do good work and upon January 23, 1859, when a boy of less than fifteen years, he preached his first sermon at Troy, Mich., being then a student. After this he gave his attention largely to preaching and was known far and wide as the boy preacher of Michigan. Twenty-five years from that day he again preached in Troy and six people were present who had heard his first sermon. While preaching he continued his education at Hillsdale College.
Just before graduation the young preacher left college to accept a call to the pulpit at South Bend, Ind. His ministry since that time has carried him to various places, among which are Auburn, N. Y., Corry, Pa., Buchanan, Mich., Laporte, Ind., Covington, Ky., Carthage, Ohio, Grand Rapids, Mich., Marion, Iowa, and Cameron, Mo. While in the East he attended a course of medical lectures at Buffalo, N. Y., and completed his course at Cincinnati, Ohio, still preaching while he attended these studies. While at Cincinnati he graduated from both the Eclectic Medical Institute and the Medical College of Ohio. In 1877 while living in Grand Rapids, he had the misfortune to lose his hearing, in consequence of which he entered the editorial field at Davenport, Iowa, taking charge of a paper advocating the cause of Prohibition and at the same time lecturing on this theme. This paper, the Northwestern News, had sought him on account of the fame of his editorials in the Lever which was then published at Grand Rapids and now at Chicago. He partially recovered his hearing and resumed the active ministry, and ten years later came to Shelbyville, where he has charge of the leading church in the place.
While at Cameron, Mo., Dr. Collins held meetings in Shaw's Opera House and built a baptistry on the stage where he baptized a number of people. This remarkable measure attracted the attention of the press throughout the country. Dr. Collins is a writer of no small calibre, and the books of which he is author are widely circulated. He is very methodical and keeps a full record of his work. His Calculator which was published in 1882 is widely used by banks throughout the country, and exhibits his mathematical mind by his numerous new methods of calculation.
The marriage of Dr. Collins and Miss Joanna, daughter of Russell P. and Almira Hibbard, took place May 31, 1864. This lady was born in South Butler, Wayne County, N. Y., and is now the mother of one child, Leslie N. The Doctor is a strong temperance man and a Republican in politics. In 1880 the College of Hillsdale, Mich., honored both itself and our subject by conferring upon him the degree of Master of Arts.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Ephraim H. Cook
Ephraim H. Cook, of Shelbyville, is one of the most popular, keen and wide-awake of the men whose liberal, progressive and far-sighted methods have been potent in the making of this county. He has in various ways borne a part in its upbuilding and in the extension of its industrial interests for more than thirty years, and today is widely known as one who has been influential in the introduction and breeding of fine horses in this section of the state.
In Washington County, Md., is the birthplace of our subject, two miles from Hagerstown, and he first opened his eyes to the familiar scenes of his boyhood October 2, 1834. His father, John Cook, was a native of Franklin County, Pa. He was married at Greencastle, his native State, to Miss Hannah Hoffman. who was born in Baltimore County, Md., and died in Funkstown, the same State, in 1848, leaving five children - John, George, Ephraim H., Eliza and William. The father was a blacksmith, and removing from Greencastle to Funkstown, he followed his trade there for a time and then opened a hotel. He resided there until his death in 1857, and his community was thus deprived of one of its most substantial citizens who was greatly respected.
He of whom this brief life-record is written was educated in his native town, and at the age of seventeen the energetic, self-reliant youth began an apprenticeship at Hagerstown to learn the trade of a carpenter and joiner. He served two years, and having gained an accurate knowledge of his calling he worked at it on his own account at Greencastle, Pa. one season, and at Baltimore, Md., for the same length of time. With characteristic foresight and business acumen he judged settled regions of the great Prairie State offered a wider field to men in this line than the older portions of the country that had long been inhabited, and he resolved to take advantage of such opportunities as he might seize here to build up his fortunes, and in 1855 we find him located at Mt. Morris, in Ogle County. He was actively employed at his trade there until 1859, and in that year took an important step in life in then making this county his future residence, which has accrued to his benefit as well as to that of the community at large. He has ever since made Shelbyville his home. He carried on the business of contractor and builder for some years, was instrumental in introducing a style of architecture useful as well as ornamental, and some of the best buildings here, including the Methodist Episcopal and Presbyterian Churches are monuments to his skill. He is a man of large enterprise and by no means confined his attention wholly to his work as a contractor, but branched out in other directions, and at the same time was interested in a flouring mill at Windsor and in a saw-mill ten miles south of the city, also engaged in the lumber business and farming, and for a time was interested in the foundry. Soon after coming here Mr. Cook bought his farm, which is a valuable and well improved property, advantageously located three miles east of the city. It is admirably adapted to stock-raising purposes, and Mr. Cook devotes it principally to the business of breeding horses, and with such success that he is the owner of some of the finest thoroughbreds, draft and trotting horses in the country. At the present time he has four stallions, one of them an imported English draft horse and one an imported Clydesdale, the celebrated "Hazel N.," of the Hambletonian and Membrino stock, registered number 11,600. He is a handsome bay with black points, and is considered one of the finest horses in the State. "Cuyahoga Chief," another of his fine horses, is a handsome black, of the Blackhawk, Morgan and Membrino Chief strains.
Mr. Cook was married in 1858 to Ellen Virginia Fouke, a native of Shepherdstown, Va., and a daughter of James and Angelina (Byers) Fouke. He is the owner of well-appointed residences of Shelbyville, whose furnishings and surroundings are luxurious, and the cordiality and good will exercised by its generous host and hostess and others of the household toward all who enter therein is something to be remembered with pleasure. Mr. and Mrs. Cook have seven children, namely: Wilbur; Eva, wife of Charles E. Haydon; John H., Nellie, Harry, Walter and Charles. Our subject has not stooped to query whether or sheer force of an active spirit and an indomitable will, guided by sound sense and high principles and seconded by a judgment in business matters that is unerring and by a masterly ability to accomplish whatever he sets his hand to. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, is liberal in his contributions for its support, and exercises true public spirit in all things that will in any way enhance the well-being of the community. He is a Republican in politics and is devoted to his party. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois. . . ." Published by Biographical Publishing Co., 1891, tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Rev. Nathaniel Corley
Rev. Nathaniel Corley, an old settler and prominent farmer of Pickaway Township, who has ever been known for his good words and works among the people. He is a resident on section 34, where he has one hundred and sixty acres, less one acre given by him for the use of the Separate Baptist Church. He procured this land from the Government in 1847, and has ever since owned the place and put it in its present well cultivated and productive condition. It is a well cared for place, every particular being kept up in the best of order. He secured the land on a land warrant issued to him by the Government for services rendered in the Mexican War, in which he had enlisted when nineteen years of age, in the year 1846, joining the Third Illinois Regiment, Col. Forman and Capt. Freeman, of Company B, commanding. Mr. Corley went with his regiment to Mexico as Sergeant and after serving for about seven months was discharged on account of disability, having contracted illness during his service. He was in no active engagements, but saw much of the treachery and vindictiveness of the Mexicans. On his return home, and when he recovered his health he located his warrant on the land which he now owns and has ever since made it his home, his grant being admitted during President Polk's administration. Our subject was born on Robinson Creek, Ridge Township, this county, June 13, 1827. His father was Bryant Corley, a native of Virginia, and of Scotch-Irish parentage and ancestry. He was only two years old when his parents, Jonathan C. and Delilah (Smith) Corley came to Kentucky, and eighteen years of age when his parents and family proceeded to Illinois and made settlement on Robinson Creek. There they began life in the early 1820s and were the first pioneers of the county and for many years were in a sparsely settled country. At the time of their advent here, the Indians were their most frequent visitors and wild game was to be procured in abundance. Jonathan C. and his wife after some years improved a farm in Cold Spring Township, this county, and there died. Mr. Corley being a victim to paralysis and passing away at the age of seventy-eight, October 3, 186l. He had been a very strong and rugged man, and was noted for his wonderful strength and enduring capacity. His wife was, at the time of her death in 1848, three-score and ten years of age. They belonged to the Methodist Church, when primitive followers of Wesley believed it wrong to wear a ribbon or flower, or to beautify in any way, the exterior person.
Bryant Corley was one of quite a large family, the children being thirteen in number. All lived to be married and have families, but at the present time only six of the family survive, and they are all quite advanced in years. Bryant Corley, soon after reaching manhood, married Elizabeth Lee, a native of Kentucky, and a daughter of John and Sarah (Hill) Lee, both natives of this country, but of German ancestry. The lady's family came to Illinois in 1818, and settled on Robinson Creek, Shelby County, a short time later, and like the Robinsons and Corleys, were among the earliest settlers in the county, and there John Lee and his wife spent the remainder of their lives, with the exception of the last few months, which they passed in Texas, where they died. Mr. Lee had served for three months in the War of 1812. After the marriage of our subject's parents they purchased a raw prairie farm and there lived for some time. Later they secured another farm, and improved it afterward moving to Rose Township, where they settled in a comfortable home, and there died. The father passed away January 13, 1874. He was born December 8, 1805. His wife died some years later at the home of her son, our subject, her decease occurring March 3, 1881. She and her husband were four years identified with the Methodist Church.
Our subject was the first born of ten children, six sons and four daughters. Four of the children are yet living, two sons and two daughters, and all are married. Our subject acquired his education in the primitive log school house, but is an intelligent and well informed man. He was married in Ridge Township, this county, in 1847, to Miss Chloe Casey. She was born and reared on the farm in Ridge Township, where she celebrated her marriage and was the youngest daughter, of Levi Casey, a well-known pioneer and frontiersman of this county, where he lived and died. Mrs. Corley was well reared by good parents. She is the sister of Judge John Casey, a prominent man in his county and State in the early days. Mrs. Corley was an earnest Christian and a kind neighbor and loving wife. She died at her home in this township April 19, 1862. She was a member of the United Brethren Church. She bore her husband two children, namely: Levi B. and Bryant. The former took as wife Catherine Mattox. They live on the farm owned by our subject and operate the same. Bryant took as wife Nancy Brinker. They also live on the home farm. The old house is full of the merry voices of children who make the rooms re-echo with their gay laughter and merry play. Levi has four children who are Addie, the wife of Rich R. Bryant, who resides in Cold Spring Township, this county, Chloe, Mary J. and Emma M. Bryant's children are Mary F., Naomia, Lydia E., Nelson O., Ettir M. and Edith N. After the death of his first wife, our subject was a second time married to Miss Rebecca R. Whitten. Their marriage was solemnized January 15, 1863. The lady was born in Kentucky, October 23, 1828, and is a daughter of Josiah and Sarah (Rector) Whitten, natives of South Carolina and Virginia, respectively, although married in Tennessee, and after a short residence in Kentucky emigrating to Illinois in 1846, where they settled in Montgomery County, and here lived, passing away at the ages of ninety-four and eighty-two, respectively. They were farmers and members of the Baptist Church. Mrs. Corley was twenty years old when her parents came to Illinois, and she lived in Montgomery County until her marriage. Both she and her husband are active members of the Baptist Church in which body Mr. Corley has been ordained a preacher and in which capacity he has served for twenty-four years, his ordination taking place in the month when he was forty years old. The Elders officiating were Revs. Willis Whitfield, Francis and Randolph, George W. Carter and John Turner. He has been in active service in the church ever since, until within four years. During that time he has done much travelling through the State and has been a faithful and devoted worker.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Charles Cowle, the fortunate proprietor of one of the finest and best-managed farms in all Penn Township, is a veteran of the late war, who nobly devoted the opening years of his manhood to the service of his country and helped to preserve the Union. He was born in the beautiful New England city of New Haven, Conn., July 27, 1837. His father, Daniel Cowle, was a native of the Isle of Man, a son of Charles Cowle, who was also born on that island, upon which he spent his entire life engaged in agricultural pursuits on an estate that he had inherited. He reared three sons and one daughter. The father of our subject was the only member of the family that ever came to America, his emigration to this country occurring when he was about twenty-five years old. He resided at first in New York, and also in New Jersey for a time, whence he went to New Haven, Conn., and later to Virginia, from which State he ultimately came to Illinois in 1841 by the way of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. He located in the southern part of Macoupin County, and was one of the pioneers of that section of the State. From there he removed to Madison County a few years later, and buying a farm lived there until 1865. In that year he came to this county and bought a tract of wild prairie in what is now Penn Township. He built upon his land, and in due time improved a good farm, which was his home until his death in 1878, when the township lost a useful citizen, who was greatly respected. During his residence at New Haven, he married Miss Rosanna Fanning, in whom he found a helpful wife and a devoted companion. She is still living on the old homestead. She is a native of Patterson, N. J., and a daughter of John and Catherine Fanning. Of her nine children six have been spared to bless her declining years.
Our subject, who was reared to agricultural pursuits, followed farming in Madison County until 1861. July 16, that year, he threw aside his work to volunteer for the defense of the old flag, and his name was enrolled as a member of Company I, Ninth Illinois Infantry. He went to the front with his regiment, and took part in the battles of Ft. Donelson, Shiloh, Jackson (Miss.), joined Sherman's command at Goldsborough, N. C., and went on the Atlanta campaign, doing his share of fighting in the important battles enroute to Atlanta, and in the engagements with the enemy around that city. He was honorably discharged at Atlanta on the expiration of his term of enlistment. Returning to Illinois, he re-enlisted the same fall, notwithstanding his past experience of the hardships of a soldier's life, as, with true patriotism, he was determined to see the contest between the North and South to its bitter end, if possible. He joined his regiment in North Carolina, and marched with the victorious army by the way of Richmond to Washington, where he took part in the Grand Review, and was honorably discharged for a second time from the service in July, 1865. The Ninth Illinois Infantry to which Mr. Cowle belonged were in one hundred and ten engagements commanded respectively by Col. E. A. Paine, Col. A. Mersey and Col. J. J. Philips. At Corinth, in 1863, the regiment was mounted and remained as such until the expiration of the term of service, and took part in numberless skirmishes and battles. In the fall of the year that he left the army, Mr. Cowle came to Shelby County, and in 1868 bought the farm in Penn Township that he now owns and occupies. This is a valuable farm, and its finely tilled and highly productive fields yield him a neat income. Here he lives happy in a state of single blessedness, sometimes keeping bachelor's hall, at other times boarding, as his fancy dictates. He is much liked in his community, as he is invariably pleasant, neighborly and obliging, and he is trusted to the fullest extent by all who know him, as he is always fair and honest in his dealings. Politically, he affiliated with the Republican party many years, but at present he is independent.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
John W. Cowle
John W. Cowle, who is part proprietor of the Moweaqua Mill, Shelby County, is a capable and enterprising business man, and is contributing his need toward sustaining and extending the material prosperity of this, his native State. He was born in Macoupin County, September 6, 1843, and is a son of Daniel Cowle, who was for many years before his death identified with the agricultural interests of Illinois, the latter part of his life carrying on his farming operations in this county. Daniel Cowle was born on the Isle of Man, where his father, whose given name was Charles, had inherited a large farm, which was his home throughout his life. He reared three sons and one daughter, Daniel being the only member of the reared and educated in the home of his birth, receiving a thorough drilling in all things that pertain to farming, and at the age of twenty-five he went out into the world to see what life held for him elsewhere. He made his way to the United States, and for awhile lived in the State of New York, and was also a resident of New Jersey for some years. We next hear of him in Connecticut, whence he went to Virginia, and from that State he came to Illinois in 184l, coming by the way of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. He located among the pioneers of Macoupin County, and for a time lived near Bunker Hill. He then went to Madison County and bought land ten miles north of Edwardsville, and devoted himself sedulously to farming in that locality for several years. In 1865 he came to Shelby County, and settled in that part of Pickaway now included in Penn Township, where he bought a tract of wild prairie, which in time he developed into a productive farm, and there death claimed him in 1878, and his township was deprived of a most worthy citizen. He was a sincere Christian, and led a life of unswerving integrity. He was reared in the Episcopal Church, but later in life he joined the Methodist Episcopal Church, and ever remained true to that faith.
Mr. Cowle was married in New Haven, Conn., in 1835, to Miss Rosanna Fanning, who survives him, and still occupies the old home in Penn Township. She is a good woman, and a faithful member of the Christian Church. She was born in Patterson County, N. J., to John and Catherine Fanning, who dying when she was young, left her an orphan, and she was cared for by her older sisters until her marriage. She has reared nine children, of whom these six have been spared to comfort her old age: Charles; Harriet, the wife of George Goodwin; John W.; George; Louisa J., the widow of Lewis Cooper, and Fanny, the wife of James Vangundy. Our subject passed his boyhood in Madison County, and received his education in the public schools. He came to this county with his parents, continued to make his home with them, and after his father's death he superintended the farm until 1881. In that year he went to Nebraska and spent a few months in that State. Returning to this county, he resumed farming on the old homestead, and was thus employed until 1890, when he bought an interest in the Moweaqua Mill, and has since devoted himself to its management. This mill is well equipped with first-class machinery and under our subject's supervision a fine grade of flour is manufactured, that finds a ready market and commands a good price.
Mr. Cowle and Miss Mary E. Hanna united their lives and fortunes in 1879 in a marriage that has been a union of mutual felicity, and their pleasant home circle is completed by the five children born to them, named as follows: Willie, George, Maud, Florence and Fred. Mrs. Cowle was born in County Derry, Ireland, and is a daughter of David and Isabella (Thompson) Hanna, also natives of that county. They were industrious, virtuous, upright people, and faithful members of the Presbyterian Church. In 1851 they left their old home, and crossing the water to this country, settled in Philadelphia, where they died a few years later, the mother in November, 1859, and the father in January, 1860, leaving two children, Mrs. Cowle and her brother William, the latter of whom is now dead. Mr. and Mrs. Cowle are members in high standing of the Presbyterian Church. Their social position is among our best people, and Mr. Cowle is known in business circles as an honorable, straight forward, square-dealing man.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Andrew L. Craig
Beginning life as a pioneer in the State of Indiana, our subject removed to this State at an early day, where the country was as undeveloped as his native place was at the time of his birth. He settled in Shelby County, in June, 1839, and has since made this State his home. As before said Mr. Craig is a native of the State of Indiana, having been born in Fayette County, January 6, 1827. He is a son of James and Mary (Barrickman) Craig, both natives of Pennsylvania. They met, however, and married in Kentucky, whence they removed to Indiana, being among the earliest settlers of that State.
On first coming into this State our subject's parents settled on Robinson Creek, Ridge Township, Shelby County, where James Craig purchased four hundred acres of land, and entered six hundred acres of Government land. For the former he paid $8 per acre but was permitted to enjoy his new home only a short time, for in 1841 he died. His wife survived him by a number of years, finally passing away in 1864, at the age of seventy-six years.
James and Mary Craig were the parents of eleven children, eight of whom lived to reach years of maturity. Their names are as follows: Jane, James, Robert, Jacob F., John R., Mary, William and Andrew. Of these the eldest daughter died in 1864; James makes his home in Boone County, Iowa; Robert died in Shelby County; Jacob F. resides in Boone County, Iowa; John R. lives in Shelbyville; Mary married Madison Busby and died in Christian, leaving one son to her bereaved husband; William died in Shelby County, in 1864.
Andrew L., our subject. is the youngest member of the family. He was reared on the farm and received an early training in the way in which to conduct a farmer's work. He attended such schools as the county afforded at that time. The first school that he attended was a log cabin with a great fireplace at one end that scorched the children's faces while their backs were freezing. The seats were of slabs with pegs set in the ends for legs. There were no desks and the books were a promiscuous and heterogeneous mixture. He resided with his mother until her death.
In 1870 Mr. Craig was united in marriage with Sarah Fakner, a daughter of Thomas and Jane (Rodman) Fakner. The lady was born in Ohio, March 12, 1829, but came to Illinois when very young. She is the eighth of a family of nine children. Our subject settled on section 14, of Rural Township, in 1885, and here he is the owner of two hundred and twenty acres of good, arable land that has been well improved. It has a fine residence well located, commodious and comfortable, and the appliances for carrying on its owner's calling in a thorough and scientific manner are many and perfect. Politically he of whom we write inclines toward Democracy, finding the breadth of platform claimed by that party to accord with his views of equity and freedom. He has held several offices in the township, having been Collector, Assessor, and Supervisor. His attention has been mainly directed to the raising of stock, of which he has a great deal that will compare well with any in the country.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
John R. Craig
John R. Craig, Justice of the Peace of Shelbyville, is well and favorably known throughout Shelby County, of which he has been a resident these many years. A native of Campbell County, Ky., he was born in one of its pioneer homes December 11, 1817. His father, James Craig, was a Pennsylvanian by birth and a son of Robert Craig, a native of Scotland, who came to America when a young man and located in Pennsylvania, where he carried on farming. He was married in that State, and subsequently removed to the wilds of Kentucky, going thither on the Ohio River. For a time he lived in Campbell County, and then became an early settler of Boone County, where he bought a tract of timber, which he cleared and developed into a farm, his homestead being located near the village of Burlington, and there he spent his declining years.
The father of our subject was reared in his early Kentucky home, and in that State sought and found a wife in the person of Mary Barrickman, who was also a native of that part of the country and was a daughter of Jacob Barrickman, a pioneer of that region. Mr. Craig resided in Campbell County until 1818 or 1819, and then he too became a pioneer of a new State, removing to Indiana, and settling in the primeval wilds of Fayette County on a tract of heavily timbered land six miles south of the county seat. His first work was to build a log house to shelter his family, and he then entered upon the hard task before him of clearing his land and preparing it for cultivation. At that time timber was of but little value, the principal object of the pioneers being to get out of the way, and large logs were rolled together and burned, which today would command a good price in the lumber markets. The country round about was but thinly inhabited, there were not railways, and Cincinnati was the nearest market where the settlers could sell their produce and obtain needed supplies, though it was then but a small city.
Our subject's father lived in Indiana until 1839, when he came to Illinois, bringing with him his wife and seven children, the removal being made with teams, six horses being attached to a wagon, in which the household goods were conveyed, and the family camped at noon and nightfall to rest and cook their meals. Mr. Craig secured a suitable location in what is now Ridge Township, where he entered Government land, also buying some that had been previously entered by another man, and he and his family proceeded to occupy the set of log buildings that stood on the place. In that home he dwelt until death cut short his busy career in 1842, thus depriving the county of a useful and respected pioneer, who was doing his share in developing its agriculture. His wife, who survived him a number of years, also died on the home farm.
The subject of this biography was very young when his parents went to Indiana to live, and there under the invigorating influences of pioneer life he grew to a strong, self-reliant manhood. In 1841 he came to Shelby County and cast in his lot with the settlers of this region that had preceded him. They were few in numbers, and the country was still such as the Indians had left it, the land being mostly owned by the Government, and since sold at $1.25 an acre, or less. Our subject made his home on his parents' farm remaining with his mother until his marriage, after which event he continued to occupy a part of the old homestead until 1847. In that year he went to Iowa, going thither with a team, and became an early settler of Davis County, locating in Bloomfield, where he bought a residence, and was engaged as a clerk for several years. In 1848 he returned to Shelby County and devoted himself to farming until he was elected to the position of Deputy Sheriff in 1870, when he removed to Shelbyville to assume the duties of his office, of which he was an incumbent six years. he was then elected to his present office of Justice of the Peace. Curing the several years that he has held this important position he has shown himself to be well qualified for it, and has given satisfaction to all concerned, as he is wise, shrewd and fair-minded. In his social relations he is a member in high standing of Okaw Lodge, No. 117, I. O. O. F.
Mr. Craig was first married in 1842 to Miss Elizabeth Boulton, a native of Indiana. Their wedded life was brought to a close in 1844 by the death of the young wife. She left two children, James and Mary J. The second marriage of our subject, which took place in Iowa in 1850, was with Miss Sarah Hill, a native of Ohio, and a daughter of Jesse Hill. This lady passed from earth August 13, 1891. Six children blessed their union, namely: Mary, Allie, John, Kate and Addie twins, and Lillie. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
He whose name is at the head of this sketch resides on section 6, Okaw Township, having settled in Shelby County in 1861. He was born in Knox County, Ohio, March 31, 1833, and is a son of John and Nancy (Steinmetz) Crowl, natives of Virginia, near the old Maryland line; it is uncertain whether the mother may not have been born in Maryland. The families of both father and mother removed to Ohio and settled in Knox County, where they were pioneers. John Crowl, the father of our subject, was a soldier in the War of 1812. After marriage be located in Knox County, Ohio. His first wife, the mother of our subject, died in 1844. She was the mother of eleven children, nine of whom lived to be grown. They were, Mary, John, Catherine, Lydia, Henry, George, Hannah, Cordelia and Amanda. The original of this sketch was the only member of his family to come to Illinois. He was reared a farmer, his father having followed that pursuit all his life, as had his grandfather before him. Our subject received his education in the district schools of his native place, acquiring a knowledge of the branches that are indispensable to a practical business man. He was married October 25, 1859, to Miss Sarah Ann Marshall. The lady is a daughter of Robert and Nancy Marshall, and was born in Ohio, where her parents were pioneers. Mr. Crowl came to Illinois in 1860, his first stop being in Livingston County, and in 1861 he came to Shelby County and settled where he now resides they having at that time a small tract of unimproved prairie land here. They now own one hundred and seventy-six acres of well-improved land that under the capable management of our subject is made to yield fine crops. He has erected upon the place a good residence and barns, his place having many of the latest improvement in agricultural implements. Mr. and Mrs. Crowl have been the parents of seven children. Five of these are now living, viz: Henrietta who is the wife of Samuel Turner; John M., Arthur W., Emery A. and Loren L. He of whom we write is an adherent of the Democratic party, believing that the principles of this party are those most suited to a Government where freedom and personal liberty are supposed to be sovereign. He has held some offices in the gift of the township, having filled the positions of Road Commissioner and School Director to the entire satisfaction of his constituents. Mr. Crowl is a modest, unassuming man, but one who is universally liked by his fellow-townsmen and neighbors because of his amiability and friendliness. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois. . . ." Published by Biographical Publishing Co., 1891, tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
The name at the head of this sketch is that of a contractor and builder, uniting with this the business of agriculture, being a general farmer residing on section 33, of Moweaqua Township, Shelby County, where he owns one hundred and twenty acres of well-improved land.
Our subject has devoted the greater part of his life to the business of a mechanic, in which he has had a very successful career. He came to Moweaqua in 1852, remaining here one year. He then absented himself three years, returning in 1855, and has since made the township his home. From the fact that he has been here so long and being well known as a man of much business ability who is never satisfied with doing anything but the best work, he is very well and favorably known in the county.
When the slavery question culminated in the terrible war between the North and South, and a call was made for volunteers, Mr. Curtis was one of the first to respond. He enlisted in October, 1861, in Company E, of the Forty-first Ohio Infantry, Col. Hughes being in command. Our subject's regiment was under the general command of Gen. Culbert, and fought at Ft. Donelson, Shiloh, Vicksburg, Nashville and Atlanta, and serving for three years. Our subject was never afraid of military duty. He was an active and hard fighter and was engaged in many skirmishes besides the well known battles mentioned above. He was so fortunate as to escape without a wound, nor was he ever captured. Entering the war as a private his bravery was recognized, and he was offered a First Lieutenant's commission, but honors of that kind were not so much to him as the knowledge that he was doing the best that he could for his country and his flag, as a brave private, and he declined the honor. He received an honorable discharge at Chattanooga. Tenn., in October, 1864, and he is very proud of his war record, and though unassuming and modest, tells with enthusiasm, of various engagements in which he has taken part.
Mr. Curtis was born in Medina County, Ohio, February 20, 1837. He is a son of Enoch and Mary M. (Serdan) Curtis, natives of Vermont, coming of good New England stock. After the marriage of our subject's parents they came to Ohio, where they lived for a few years and then early in the 1840s, while the country was as primitive as it could be, and while some of the greatest characters in American history were maturing and becoming strong to meet the emergencies that were to confront them. At that time there were no cars and but two alternatives; either to come by water via the lakes, or overland, with their own teams, which latter way they chose. Their first location was in McLean County, and they made them a home in or near Bloomington, Ill. There Enoch Curtis died in 1853 at the age of thirty-five years. He had learned the trade of a mechanic, although he was reared a farmer, but a pioneer settler necessarily must be able to turn his skill in several directions. His wife died in 1888, in Moweaqua, Ill., at the age of seventy-two years. Both she and her husband were prominent members of the Christian Church. Both our subject's father and his grandfather, Pond Curtis, belonged to the old Whig party. Our subject's grandfather and his wife were early settlers in this State, in McLean County, but they spent the last years in Lake County, where they died at an advanced age.
Only two members of the family of Curtis still survive, our subject, and a sister Permelia Kirkman, now of Moweaqua. From the age of twelve the original of this sketch has encountered the difficulties of life alone and unaided, being at the same time, the support of his mother. He learned the trade of a house-builder in Moweaqua, and when he had arrived at years of maturity, he united himself in marriage to Miss Sarah Daughtry. She was born in East Tennessee in 1846 and came to Illinois while young, with her parents, Brant and Lydia Daughtry. The family located in this county and township about the time of the breaking out of the war, in which Mr. Daughtry enlisted and served as a soldier. He did not survive long after the war, his death having been caused by sickness contracted in the army. He passed away while in the hospital at Mound City, Ill. His wife, resides in Moweaqua, and is now seventy-five years of age. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and is a good and consecrated old lady. She never married again. Mrs. Curtis was reared and educated for the most part in this county. She is the mother of three children, who are all yet under their father's roof. They are Fred and James, who conduct the farm, and a daughter Bertha, all bright and intelligent children. Mrs. Curtis is a member in good standing of the Presbyterian Church, and by her influence she exercises a very beneficient influence in the community. Politically her husband is an adherent of the Republican party, upholding its platform and favoring its constituents.[Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..."; Chicago Biographical Publishing Co., 1891; tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
John M. Cusaac
It is contrary to the principles of true political economy to encourage celibacy and discourage marriage, and the historian regrets the necessity of occasionally chronicling the fact that a man of noble life, integrity and honor, has been content to live a life of single blessedness and has not made for himself a true home by placing at his side a companion who would double his joys and halve his sorrows. Yet when a single life has been conducted so nobly and unselfishly as has that of our subject, the writer willingly touches lightly upon this dereliction from duty and is willing to paint in light colors the life of this worthy man. Our subject was born in Perry County, Ohio, in 1825, being the son of Andrew Cusaac, a native of Pennsylvania, and Jane Shaw, who was born in the same State. His parents settled in Perry County, Ohio, in 1813 and there made their home through life. Of their eight children two died in infancy. William died in Perry County, Ohio, and Jane, who married Mr. Ensminger, resides with our subject. Caroline married Jacob Dial and her death occurred in June, 1890. Two children, James and Celia survive her. Mary married Cornelius Axline and died in Muskingum County, Ohio, leaving two children, William and Matilda. Lucinda is the wife of Robert Yost and Sarah M., an unmarried sister, resides with our subject. Mr. Cusaac has ever been a kind and affectionate brother to his sisters and their comfort and support in times of trial. Mr. Cusaac first located on section 29, Shelbyville Township, when he came to this county, and he here purchased nearly eight hundred acres of land. In this he was joined by his brother, A. J. About the year 1864 he purchased the farm upon which he now resides and upon which he has erected a pleasant home, excellent barns and other substantial and handsome improvements, so that it is now counted as the best improved farm in Shelbyville Township, and comprises some four hundred acres of land. His political views bring him into affiliation with the party which is proud to claim the names of Jefferson and Jackson, but he is not a politician nor wire puller and has steadfastly declined to accept office. He is a supporter of the Presbyterian Church to which his sisters belong and is warmly interested in the cause of Christianity, although not a church member. His industry, economy and thrift have placed him upon a substantial footing and given him the respect of his fellow-citizens. He settled in this county in 1866, and his pleasant home is located just outside the city limits of Shelbyville. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois. . . ." Published by Biographical Publishing Co., 1891, tr. by G.T. Transcription Team]
Capt. Edward B. Cutler
Capt. Edward B. Cutler, who was a valiant officer in the Union Army during the late war, has since attained a leading place among the most progressive and enlightened farmers and stock-raisers of this county and the land that he purchased in Penn Township when he came here nearly twenty years ago has been developed by him into one of the choicest farms in this part of the State in point of cultivation and improvement. Captain Cutler was born in the town of Jay, Essex County, N. Y., July 11, 1822. His father, Thomas Cutler, was also a native of that county, of which his father, John Cutler, was an early settler. The latter was born in New England and was a descendant of early English ancestry that had settled in that part of the county in Colonial times. After his removal to Essex County, N. J., he bought a tract of timberland in Jay and at once commenced to clear it and prepare it for cultivation. He was drowned while attempting to cross the Au Sable River in 1830. He was a soldier in the Revolutionary War.
The father of our subject grew to man's estate in his native county and was there married to Jane Steele, a native of Moore's Hill, N. H. In 1828 the parents of our subject removed to the wilds of St. Lawrence County, N. Y., and settled in the town of Willney, two miles south of Hoovelton, where the father bought timbered land, upon which be erected a log house for a dwelling. At that time that county was but thinly inhabited and bears were frequently seen by the settlers, while deer and other game was plentiful and helped to vary the meager fare of the people, who had to live on their farm products. The women clothed their children in homespun that was the result of their own handiwork.
Mr. Cutler cleared quite a tract of his land and resided on it until the fall of 1839, when he became the pioneer of another State. Accompanied by his family he started with a team for Watertown, whence he went by boat to Rochester, from there by canal to Buffalo, thence on Lake Erie to Cleveland, from there to Portsmouth, Ohio, where he embarked on a steamer on the Ohio River and was conveyed to his final destination at Lawrenceburg. He farmed there two years and then proceeded on a flat-boat down the Ohio to Louisville and from there to Troy, Ind., where he bought a tract of heavily wooded land eight miles from the Ohio River. The surrounding country was still in a wild condition, as there were not then many settlements there, and deer, wild turkeys and other kinds of game roamed at will where are now smiling farms and evidences of thrift and plenty on every hand. The father built a home, but his life was not spared long after he took possession of it, as his career was cut short by his untimely death in 1842. His wife also died on that farm in Perry County. She was the mother of these five children: James M., Catherine, Abigail, Thomas and Edward. Edward and Abigail are the only survivors of the family.
Edward Cutler was seventeen years old when his parents removed to Indiana. He assisted his father in clearing his land until the latter's death and then he and his brother Thomas continued the improvements begun by their father and they farmed in partnership until Edward's marriage, and then his brother went into the mercantile business, while our subject engaged in agriculture and boating on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, beginning in the latter business in 1842. He would build a flat-boat, load it with farm produce or coal, take it to New Orleans and then sell boat and cargo and return home by steamer. He thus made eighty-four trips to the Crescent City.
The breaking out of the Rebellion found our subject busy in the management of his interests, and as soon as he could arrange his affairs he volunteered to help fight his country's battles, enlisting October 20, 1861, in Company E, Forty-ninth Indiana Infantry. He was mustered in as Captain of his company at Camp Joe Holt November 21, and in the trying years that followed he showed himself to he possessed of good soldierly metal and his military record is one of which he and his may well be proud. He took part in the battle at Cumberland Gap and when he and his brave men started with others in pursuit of Gen. Bragg's forces their knapsacks were empty as they had run out of provisions, and they had to forage for a living. They used their bayonets to punch holes in their canteens that they might use them as graters to reduce the dry corn to meal and in various other ways did they show their fertility of resource in any emergency. From Kentucky the Captain accompanied his regiment to West Virginia, where it was stationed three months and then was dispatched on transports down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers to Memphis. From there the Forty-ninth Indiana was sent to Vicksburg to help carry on the siege of that city and it also took an active part in the battles of Gibson, Thompson's Hill, Big Black River, Chickasaw Bayou and Arkansas Post.
At Vicksburg our subject led a successful charge on the works on the 22d of May. After that he went to Grand Gulf with his command and did some hard fighting at Thompson's Hill, which resulted in the enemy being driven back. He next assisted in the reduction of Jackson, Miss., and went from there to Vicksburg, afterward facing the rebels in two hotly contested battles at Edward's Station and Champion Hill. We next hear of his services at the battle of Big Black River and after the surrender of Vicksburg he accompanied his regiment to New Orleans, going thence to Matagorda Bay, Tex., and returning to New Orleans, he then went on the Red River Expedition and did some hard fighting at Shreveport. After that the Captain and his men fought the rebels at Kane Creek, whence they returned to Shreveport, where they laid a dam to let the gunboats pass the falls. From there Capt. Cutler marched with his command to Morganza Bend and thence to Lexington, Ky. He was appointed to provost duty in that city and was thus engaged until his resignation from the army July4, 1863.
After his honorable career as an officer in the Union service Capt. Cutler returned to his old home from the seat of war, bearing with him a high reputation for coolness and courage in the heat of battle and for fidelity in the performance of his duty. He quietly resumed farming on the old homestead in Indiana and dwelt there until he took up his residence in this county in 1872. He then bought the farm in Penn Township, which he still occupies and which at the time of purchase was merely a tract of wild prairie. He has transformed it into one of the most valuable farms in the township, ranking with the best in the county, as regards its many fine improvements, its high state of tillage and its productiveness. He has erected upon it a fine set of buildings, commodious and roomy and neat in their appointments. In the management of his farm the Captain has shown himself to be an expert farmer, of progressive views, with a good understanding of the best modern methods of carrying on agriculture, and on every hand are evidences of his successful prosecution of that calling, which Horace Greely denominated "the noblest of professions."
Capt. Cutler's marriage with Miss Mary Hyde was solemnized in 1860. She was a native of Perry County, Ind., and a daughter of William and Nancy Hyde. As daughter, wife, mother and friend she filled in a perfect measure those sacred relationships, and in her the Baptist Church had an exemplary Christian member. Her death in February, 1891, was a sad bereavement not only to those of her own household, but to others to whom she had endeared herself. Our subject has four children to solace his declining years. They are Grant, Florence, Heber and Verton.
The Captain is an intelligent thinker and observer, is fond of reading, having an excellent literary taste, and keeps himself well informed on all topics of general and public interest. He has decided opinions of his own; especially is this true in regard to politics, and we find him firmly arrayed on the side of the Republican party, voting as he fought for what he considers to be the best interests of the country. Religiously he is of the Methodist Episcopal faith; socially he is a member of the Masonic fraternity and of John Clement Post, No. 363, G.A. R. The worth of his loyal citizenship is appreciated by his fellow townsmen, who have entrusted responsible offices to his care, and at one time he represented Penn Township as a member of the County Board of Supervisors. [Source: "Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, Illinois..." Published by Biographical Publishing Co., 1891, transcribed by Genealogy Trails Transcription Team]
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