Stark County IL Biographies - J

C. R. Jackson

C. R. Jackson, who is farming one hundred acres of good land on section 30, Valley township, was born in the town of Stark, Stark county, on the 26th of July, 1883. His parents, Percy and Elizabeth (Dunn) Jackson, where both born in Illinois and are now living in Wyoming, this county.

C. R. Jackson is indebted for his education to the public schools and to his father for his early and thorough training in agricultural work. He is now operating the homestead, which comprises one hundred acres, and his well directed labors are rewarded by good crops. He also raises high grade stock, for which he finds a ready sale on the market, and his resources are constantly increasing. He is both practical and progressive and ranks among the efficient young farmers of the county.

In 1910 Mr. Jackson was united in married to Miss Grace Thurston, a daughter of William Thurston, and to their union has been born a son, Wilbur Richard. Since age conferred upon him the right of franchise Mr. Jackson has support the candidates and measures of the republican party but he has never been an aspirant for office. Both he and his wife attend the Congregational church of Wyoming and support all movements seeking the moral advancement of their community. He has gained a measure of success that would be creditable to a man several years his senior and his knowledge of farming and his industry insure his continued prosperity. His entire life has been spent in Stark county and the fact that those who have known him intimately from boyhood are his sincerest friends is proof of his genuine worth.

[Stark County, Illinois and its People: A record of settlement, organization, progress and achievement, published 1916, p. 309-310. – Contributed by Karen Seeman]


M. J. Jackson

M. J. Jackson is a representative of one of the old families of Stark county and the name has ever been synonymous of business enterprise and integrity through all the connection of the family with the agricultural development of this part of the state. It was upon the farm where he now resides that M. J. Jackson was born January 13, 1871, his parents being John H. and Abbie S. (Stewart) Jackson. The father was a native of Scotland, while the mother was born in Vermont and was of Scotch and German extraction. The son was reared upon the old homestead farm and after attending the district schools continued his education in the schools of Toulon, Illinois. He has spent his entire life upon the old homestead save for a period of about four or five years and now owns one hundred and sixty acres of land which is well named the Maple Holm Farm. He carries on general agricultural pursuits and has also engaged quite largely in raising stock. His diligence, close application and energy are the salient features in his growing success, which has placed him among the substantial farmers of the community.

In January, 1911, Mr. Jackson was married to Miss Winnie Gardener, who was born in Osceola and, like her husband, is widely and favorably known in this part of the state. They are consistent members of the Presbyterian church and enjoy the warm regard of all with whom they have been brought in contact. In politics Mr. Jackson is a republican and keeps well informed on the questions and issues of the day but does not seek nor desire public office. He bends his energies to the development of his farm and his practical and progressive methods are bringing substantial results.

[Stark County, Illinois and its People: A record of settlement, organization, progress and achievement, published 1916, p. 122-123. – Contributed by Karen Seeman]


R. Chester Jackson

In 1909 R. Chester Jackson purchased the farm on section 30, Elmira township, on which he now resides. His entire life has been given to general agricultural pursuits and the persistency of purpose which he has displayed has led to the attainment of his present success. He was born in Elmira township, April 9, 1881, a son of William and Louisa (Stone) Jackson. The father was a native of Scotland and came to the United States with his father, Thomas Jackson, when almost seventeen years of age. The family home was established in this county and here William Jackson wedded Louisa Stone, who was born near Osceola. He was a pioneer settler of Elmira township and there, following his marriage, continued to engage in general agricultural pursuits until his life's labors were ended in death.

R. Chester Jackson supplemented his early education, acquired in the district schools of Elmira township, by study in the Toulon Academy, and when not busy with his textbooks his attention was given to the work of the home farm until he reached the age of twenty-seven years, when he started out in business life independently by renting land in Toulon township. There he remained for three years, after which he purchased his farm on section 30, Elmira township, becoming owner of the property in 1909. This is a one hundred and sixty acre triangular tract, on which he carries on the task of cultivating corn, wheat and other cereals. He annually harvests good crops, for his methods are practical and resultant.

In 1908 Mr. Jackson was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Grieve, a daughter of William Grieve, mentioned elsewhere in this volume. They have become parents of two children, Helen Charlotte and Marcia Louise. Mr. and Mrs. Jackson are members of the Presbyterian church, in which he is serving as clerk, and their interest is always manifest on the side of those forces which work for the moral progress and improvement of the community. In politics Mr. Jackson is a republican, but while he has never sought nor held political office, he has served on the township school board of Toulon township and the cause of education finds in him a stalwart champion. For more than a third of a century he has been a resident of Stark county, covering the entire period of his life, and since starting out in the business world for himself he has made substantial progress, having steadily advanced toward the goal of prosperity.

[Stark County, Illinois and its People: A record of settlement, organization, progress and achievement, published 1916, p. 201-202. – Contributed by Karen Seeman]


Mrs. Rhoda M. Jackson

One of the best known residents of La Fayette is Mrs. Rhoda J. Jackson, who is a most active church woman and prominent in other connections. She was born in Fulton county, Illinois, and is a daughter of the Rev. Amos Morey, a native of Maine, who with his parents removed in his childhood days to Ohio, the family home being established in Huron county, where Mr. Morey was reared to manhood. He there learned the trades of carpenter and cabinet maker and while residing in that locality he was united in marriage to Miss Lydia H. Wright, who was born in the state of New York but was reared in Ohio. They removed from Ohio to Illinois, settling in Fulton county, where Mr. Morey worked at his trade but while thus engaged he devoted all his leisure time to studying for the ministry and at length was ordained in the Methodist church, becoming one of the well known ministers and circuit riders of Fulton county in early days. Prior to his ordination he had served as a local preacher for many years. In 1857 he came to La Fayette and in his last days as a superannuated minister lived with a daughter on a farm in Knox county.

His daughter Mrs. Jackson was largely reared and educated in Fulton county and on the 2nd of November, 1859, in Abingdon, Knox county, she gave her hand in marriage to Edward L. Jackson. They established their home upon a farm in Knox county, where they resided for a number of years, but in 1902 they came to Stark county, settling in La Fayette, where Mr. Jackson lived retired during the remainder of his life, his death occurring in the year 1910.

To Mr. and Mrs. Jackson were born three sons, who reached adult age, while two children passed away in early life. Cassimer reached mature years, was married and for some time engaged in business in Dixon, Illinois, but afterward removed to Alabama, where he passed away September 26, 1913. Amos Morey Jackson is now a farmer of Oklahoma. The youngest son, Clyde, was married and for some time was a commercial traveler. He resided at Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where he died in January, 1907.

Mrs. Jackson is now numbered among the old settlers of Stark county. She is a most earnest Christian woman, holding membership in La Fayette Methodist Episcopal church and taking a most helpful part in church and Sunday school work. She belongs to the Ladies Aid Society and there is perhaps no one more familiar with the history of the churches in this part of the county. Her entire life has been guided by her Christian belief, which has been manifest in many kindly deeds, her sympathy and her charity. She possesses many sterling traits of character which have gained her the warm regard that causes all to speak of her in terms of affection and goodwill.

[ Stark County Illinois and Its People: A Record Of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievement  Volume II Published 1916 by The Pioneer Publishing Company – Contributed by Karen Seeman]


Alva M. Janes

Among Stark county’s most active and progressive citizens is Alva M. Janes, who occupies a position of leadership in the western part of the county, making his home in La Fayette. Fifty-three years have come and gone since he first opened his eyes to the light of day in a little log cabin in Goshen township, on the 10th of January, 1863, and through the intervening period he has not only been an interested witness of, but also an active participant in, many events which have shaped the history and promoted the progress of this part of the state. His father, Charles Janes, was born in Wiltshire, England, where he worked in a woolen mill until he was seventeen, when he came to the United States, joining a brother and sister in Massachusetts in 1854. After a brief period in that state he came west to Rochester, Illinois, where he engaged in farm work. Mr. Janes was married in this county to Miss Christine Bergland, who was born in Sweden but came to the Bishop Hill Colony when a child of nine years with her mother and brother. In the course of years he became one of the well-known and most prosperous farmers of his part of the county, having added to his holdings until he was the owner of four hundred acres of rich and productive land. He spent his active life upon the farm in Stark county, there passing away in 1905, while his wife survived him for a decade, dying in February, 1915.

Alva M. Janes was reared upon the old home farm in Goshen township and acquired his primary education in the La Fayette schools. Later he spent three years in Illinois Wesleyan University at Bloomington. After teaching one year in Stark county he continued his studies in Northwestern University at Evanston, Illinois, where he spent three years, being graduated with the class of 1893, at which time the degree of Ph. B. was conferred upon him. He then returned to La Fayette.

On the 22d of June, 1893, Mr. Janes was married to Amy I. E. Reed, a daughter of Ira C. and Maria Reed, prominent pioneers of Goshen township and founders of the I. C. Reed public library of La Fayette. Mrs. Janes was born in La Fayette. She is a graduate of Knox College and spent five years as a high school teacher.

Following their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Janes established their home in Knox county on Maple Grove Farm, which lies in both counties and is adjacent to La Fayette. He is engaged extensively in general farming and in breeding and raising registered pure-blooded shorthorn cattle and Clydesdale horses. His business interests have been wisely conducted and have brought him a substantial measure of success.

He stands as one of the foremost agriculturists and stock raisers of the locality and is also a well-known figure in banking circles, being the prime mover in the establishment of the La Fayette State Bank. He organized the private bank of Janes & Company in 1903 and erected a good bank building. This company in 1915 was reorganized and became the La Fayette State Bank.

His interests and activities have made him a most important factor in the improvement, upbuilding and progress of the section in which he lives. While he has conducted extensive and important business interests and has won success in that connection, he has at the same time found opportunity to cooperate in movements which have been of great general benefit. He was one of the organizers and promoters of the La Fayette Fair Association, furnishing the grounds on which the association erected good buildings to accommodate the large crowds attending the fair and the exhibits sent thereto. The association has the use of fifty acres, on which is a splendid grove of large sugar maples and other fine forest trees. Mr. Janes also helped to organize a stock company that erected a hotel at a cost of eight thousand dollars. This is a good brick building, furnishing hotel accommodation for the traveling public. There are few features of the town’s progress that are not more or less indebted to him for his cooperation and aid. Perhaps his most beneficial work to the town was the establishment of the second mail route, which was accomplished after much planning and labor. It necessitated the changing of five different routes without lessening their mileage and was such a herculean task that the most optimistic predicted failure. He succeeded and won great praise from the government official for his skilful work.

Mr. and Mrs. Janes have two sons, while two daughters died in infancy. Leonard Reed is a student in Northwestern University as a member of the junior class. William Charles is a freshman at Knox College at Galesburg. The parents are members of the Methodist Episcopal church of La Fayette and Mr. Janes is serving on the official board. He was largely instrumental in having the pastor’s salary raised, for he believed that the men who devote their life to the gospel should have adequate recompense that they may support their families. Mrs. Janes is also an active church worker, and their influence in the community is always on the side of right, progress, justice and improvement. Mr. Janes is a member of the Masonic fraternity. Those who know him, and he has an extensive acquaintance in this part of the state, entertain for him the warmest regard because of his well spent life and the fidelity which he manifests to all those principles which are of greatest worth to the individual and to the community.

[Stark County, Illinois and its People: A record of settlement, organization, progress and achievement, published 1916, p. 242-244. – Contributed by Karen Seeman]


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