Dr. John E. Adams, elder brother of R. D. Adams, was born February 14, 1843, is a graduate of the St. Louis Medical College, first began practice at Cherryvale, Kan. afterward at Enfield, Ill., and since 1878 at Poplar Bluff, Mo., where, besides an extensive general practice, he holds the appointment of Surgeon of the Iron Mountain Railroad Company. He was married in Richland County,Ill., in 1865, to Miss Martha Snyder.
[Source: "History of Wayne & Clay Counties Illinois" pub. 1884, transcribed by Sue Eskew]
George H. Anderson
Active and prominent in public life, George H. Anderson has ably filled many county and township offices of trust and responsibility, in each devoting his time and energies to the duties devolving upon him, and is now rendering efficient service as sheriff of Wayne county, his home being in Fairfield. A son of Rice Anderson, he was born on a farm in Wayne county, Illinois, August 7, 1867, of Virginian ancestry.
Born in Virginia in 1810, Rice Anderson was a hardy youth of seventeen summers when, in 1827, he followed the march of civilization westward to Illinois. A pioneer settler of Orchard township, Wayne county, he lived there for a time, later moving to Garden Hill township, where in connection with general farming he followed his trade of a brick mason for many years, building all of the chimneys for miles around. He outlived the allotted three score and ten years of man's life, dying on the home farm December 15, 1882.
Rice Anderson was twice married. He married first Patsie Scott, who died in early womanhood, leaving five children, namely: Jefferson, Robert, James, Rice and Sarah Jane. At the outbreak of the Civil war the three older boys, Jefferson, Robert and James, enlisted in the Illinois volunteer infantry, and with their regiment took part in many important engagements. Jefferson was killed in battle, and Robert and James died of disease contracted in the army. Rice, the youngest son, at the age of seventeen years, enlisted for service in the army, but it being near the close of the conflict was soon honorably discharged. He is now living in Washington. Sarah Jane, the only daughter, is dead. Rice Anderson married for his second wife a widow, Mrs. Judy (Brown) Burkett, and they reared two children, namely: George Henry, the special subject of this sketch, and William Levi, a farmer of La Mar township, who at the present writing, in 1912, is serving as superintendent of the Wayne County Poor Farm.
Spending his childhood days on the home farm in Orchard township, George H. Anderson acquired his early knowledge of books in the district schools. Left fatherless at the age of thirteen years, he was forced to look out for himself thereafter, until his marriage gaining a livelihood as a farm laborer. He subsequently farmed on rented land for four years, when, in 1892, he purchased forty acres of land on Garden Hill township, and in its management was quite successful. As his means increased, Mr. Anderson invested in more land, and has now three valuable farms in this county. His brother, William Levi Anderson, is also engaged in agricultural pursuits, his farm of one hundred and forty acres lying in Elm River township.
An uncompromising Republican in politics, Mr. Anderson has very frequently been chosen by the people to fill public positions. He has served as school director two terms; as township collector one term; as postmaster at Zenith five years; was superintendent of the County Poor Farm in 1902; was re-elected to the same position in 1905; and again re-elected in 1907, and served until 1909. Elected sheriff of Wayne county in November, 1910, for a term of four years, Mr. Anderson has since filled the office to the satisfaction of every one interested in the institution. Fraternally he is a member of Johnsonville Lodge, No. 863, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, at Johnsonville, Illinois, and of Lodge No. 6932, Modern Woodmen of America, at Orchardville. Religiously he belongs to the Church of the Latter-Day Saints.
Mr. Anderson married, in March, 1888, Frances Arminta Morris, a daughter of I. A. Morris, and of their union six children have been born, namely: Jesse Leroy, aged twenty-two years, is married; Freddie Ray died at the age of seven years; Christine lived but two years; Cecil Owen, thirteen years old; Birdie Claude, ten years of age; and Lelah Arminta, a little girl of seven years.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
Granville T. Ayers
In the year succeeding that in which Oklahoma was admitted to statehood Mr. Ayers became a teacher in the public schools of Beaver County, and during the intervening period he has continued as one of the prominent and influential figures in the educational affairs of this western section of the state, his broad pedagogic experience and his marked executive ability having met with consistent recognition when, in the autumn of 1914, he was elected county superintendent of schools, a position in which his administration is fully justifying the popular choice for the incumbent of this important office and is proving potent in advancing the standard of general school work in Beaver County. Mr. Ayers has been identified with educational work for virtually twenty years and has honored his chosen profession by his character, his scholarly attainments and his worthy achievement. As one of the representative citizens and valued officials of Beaver County he is specially entitled to specific recognition in this history of the state of his adoption.
In Wayne County, Illinois, Mr. Ayers was born on the 9th of April, 1874, and the place of his nativity was far from being one of sumptuous order, though it was a true home in which comfort and refinement were in evidence,— a log house of the pioneer type being at the time the parental domicile on one of the excellent farms of the county mentioned and the place being owned and operated by the father of the future Oklahoma pedagogue. Superintendent Ayers is a son of Robert S. and Samantha (Newman) Ayers, the former of whom was born in Gibson County, Indiana, in 1831, and the latter of whom was born in Kentucky, in 1841. Robert S. Ayers is a son of Christopher Ayers, who likewise was born in Indiana, where his parents settled in the earlier pioneer era in the history of that state. The entire active career of Robert S. Ayers has been marked by close association with the basic industries of agriculture and stock raising, in connection with which he continued his operations in Indiana until 1870, when he removed with his family to Wayne County, Illinois, where he developed and improved a valuable farm and where he is now living retired, in the city of Fairfield, the county seat, his eighty-fourth birthday anniversary having been celebrated in 1915. He was a personal friend of Abraham Lincoln, whom he accompanied on the latter's canvass during the historic Lincoln and Douglas campaign, in 1860. In 1855 was solemnized his marriage to Miss Samantha Newman, a daughter of Turner Newman, who was a native of Kentucky. Her grandfather, John Henry Newman, was a native of England and came to the United States in 1824 and settled on Duck River, Kentucky, where he purchased 2,000 acres of valley land, the original deed to this property being now in the possession of his great-grandson, Granville T. Ayers, subject of this review. Mrs. Samantha Ayers passed the closing period of her gentle and gracious life at Fairfield, Illinois, where she died in the year 1901. Of the five children the only son is he to whom this sketch is dedicated and who was the fourth in order of birth. Estella, who was born in 1856, is the wife of John McLain, and they have five children,—Homer, Lena, Orrin, Paul and Kathryn. Wilmoth, who was born in 1858, is the wife of Solon Hill and has three children,—Ayers, Earl and Katerine. Jesse May, born in 1860, is the wife of James Monroe and they have four children, Orilla, who was born in 1862, is the wife of Robert Lewis, of Louisville, Clay County, Illinois, and they have one child.
After duly availing himself of the advantages of the public schools of Wayne County, Illinois, Granville T. Ayers completed an effective course of higher study in Hayward College, at Fairfield, that county, and at the age of twenty-two years he initiated his pedagogic career as a teacher in the public schools of his native state, where he continued his labors as an educator for a period of twelve years, during two of which he was an instructor in the Illinois State Reform School, at Pontiac.
In 1908 Mr. Ayers came to Oklahoma and engaged in teaching in the schools of Beaver County, his services in this capacity having continued until he was elected to his present office, that of county superintendent of schools, in the autumn of 1914, since which time he has worked with characteristic zeal and efficiency in the broader field of educational activity. He is a stalwart supporter of the cause of the republican party, is affiliated with the Masonic fraternity, and both he and his wife hold membership in the Christian Church.
On the 22d of October, 1914, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Ayers to Miss Mary White, who had been a popular teacher in the schools of Clay County, Illinois for eight years prior to her marriage. Mrs. Ayers was born in Posey County, Indiana, on the 20th of September, 1885, and in the same county were born her parents, Joseph and Mary (Montgomery) White. Mr. and Mrs. Ayers represent a distinct intellectual and moral force in their home community and also are zealous in the furtherance of high civic ideals and all things that make for the educational, moral and material welfare of their home city and county, where their circle of friends is coincident with that of their acquaintances, Mrs. Ayers being a leader in church and social activities at Beaver. [Source: “A Standard History of Oklahoma” Volume V; by Joseph B. Thoburn; copyright 1916; Transcribed by Andaleen Whitney]
Elias S. Ayles, machinist, Fairfield. Rev. Elias S. Ayles, the son of Payton and Susan (Carmichael) Ayles, was born in Washington County, Ohio, October 7,1831, and removed with his parents to Leesburg,Ind.in 1838, where his father died in 1839. Subject, at the age of fifteen years, engaged on the river as a steamboat engineer, in which occupation he remained five years. On October 16, 1849, he was married to Miss Parlia A.daughter of George and Amy (Truax) Brock, of Stafford, Ohio, and to them were born Anna E. (Jackson), Mary J.(Harper), George M. , Payton (deceased), Emma S. (Reese, deceased), Amanda E. (deceased),Mabel M., Carrie B. and Laura U. In 1853. subject came to Fairfield,Ill., and engaged in business as a tinner, which occupation he followed for four years, and then entered the service of the Ohio & Mississippi Railway Company as engineer, which position he held, at different periods for eighteen years. In the meantime, he engaged in the avocation of a farmer near Jeffersonville,Ill. for three years, and while there, in 1866, he was licensed as a minister of the Gospel in the Christian Church, in which capacity he has been very useful, and is regarded as a man well advanced in ecclesiastical affairs. In 1876, he moved to Belleville, Ohio, where he was engaged for the term of two years as a silversmith, after which he returned to Fairfield and has occupied the position of chief engineer and machinist in the Fairfield Woolen Mills to the present time. Payton, the son of David Ayles, was born in Washington County, Ohio in 1800. David came from England. James Carmichael was a Colonel, from Ohio, in the war of 1812. Susan died in Ohio in 1848, at the age of forty-seven years. George Brock was born in Pennsylvania, and died in Wayne County, Ill in 1868. His children were Jane (Clevenger), Parlia A. (Ayles), Philip, and Eli (who died in the army in 1864). Payton's children were Mary J. (Lemaster), Elias S., Hannah L. and David J. Subject is a man of varied information, being conversant with many subjects, and especially is he well versed on scientific matters, in addition to being regarded, and justly, too, as one of the most expert machinists in Southern Illinois. [Source: "History of Wayne & Clay Counties Illinois" pub. 1884, transcribed by Sue Eskew]
Allen H. Baker, manufacturer, Fairheld,was born December 7. 1839, in Chester County, Penn. His father, whose name was Lewis H. Baker, was born in 1804, on Prince Edward's Island, where he remained until 1837, when he came to Pennsylvania and located in Chester County. Here he married Mary A. Ward. She was born in Pennsylvania in 1817, and is now a resident of Wayne County, residing with a daughter Leonora,wife of James Barnhill. This family removed to Wayne County in 1853, and here Lewis H. followed his trade that of carpenter. He died in 1870, leaving two children,three having died previous to the decease of the father. Allen H. Baker is the oldest of this family of five children. In July, 1861,he enlisted in the Fortieth Illinois Regiment, and was a non-commissioned officer in Company D. At the end of the first year's service he was discharged in consequence of impaired eyesight. In 1863, having recovered from this affliction, he accepted a clerkship in the Paymaster's Department at Cincinnati,under Judge E. Beeeher, where he remained until the close of the war in 1865. He then went to Olney, Ill., where he was employed for sometime as bookkeeper. Here he married on June 21. 1868, to Mary E. Carrothers, daughter of Dr. George W.Carrothers. She was born in Ohio, November 9,1839. In 1871, they removed to Fairfield, Ill.,to engage in the drug business, which he did with William G. Carrothers. In the spring of 1873, he was induced to take the position of Superintendent of the Fairfield Woolen Mills. He continues in this position, and in 1882 became a part owner of this extensive establishment. His family consists of George C.Baker, born December 16, 1869 and Katie Baker, born March 30, 1874. He is an ardent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, as is also his wife.
[Source: "History of Wayne & Clay Counties Illinois" pub. 1884, transcribed by Sue Eskew]
James Larkin Borah, D. D. S.
A well-known and popular resident of Fairfield, James Larkin Borah, D. D. S. is one of the leading representatives of that city, keeping pace with the times in regard to the valuable discoveries and improvements that have been made in dentistry in recent years. A son of Elhanan M. Borah, he was born June 17, 1880, in Wayne county, Illinois, and reared on the home farm.
James L. Borah enlisted for service in the Spanish-American war, becoming a member of Company A, Vance's Illinois Volunteers, and with his regiment did duty in Cuba. Returning home at the expiration of his term of enlistment, he entered the Saint Louis University, and in 1905 was graduated from its dental department. Immediately locating in Fairfield, Dr. Borah has here met with veritable success as a dentist, his professional knowledge and skill having gained for him a substantial patronage. Fraternally the Doctor is a member of Fairfield Lodge, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons; of Fairfield Chapter Royal Arch Masons, of Fairfield; of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows; and of the Modern Woodmen of America.
In February, 1905, Dr. Borah married Elsie Herrmann, of Saint Louis, Missouri, a daughter of Augustus and Rosa (Leuch) Herrmann, natives of Germany, and they have one child, Charles Edward Borah, born in 1906.
Dr. Borah's paternal grandfather, George Borah, was born in Kentucky, in 1795. Sometime in the twenties he migrated to Illinois, with his brothers, Samuel and William, settling in Wayne county at a time when the Indians were numerous and troublesome. He took up land, improved a good homestead, and was engaged in farming until his death, in 1860, being killed by a horse. He was three times married and the father of several children, but owing to his untimely death the family records were lost, and but little ancestral history is now available. He married for his second wife a Miss Bendsham. After her death he visited Macon county, and while there met Lorena Montgomery, who subsequently became his third wife. She was born in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1804, a daughter of Robert Montgomery, a pioneer of Macon county, whose son, Robert Montgomery, Jr., was one of the first settlers of Decatur, Macon county, and helped build the third house erected in that place, and was thereafter a resident until his death, in 1867, at the age of ninety-eight years. Of the third marriage of George Borah three sons were born, namely: Robert, who died while yet a youth; Lyman, who served as a soldier in the Civil war, died in 1874; and Elhanan M., whose birth occurred April 16, 1849, while his mother was visiting at her old home in Decatur, Illinois.
Brought up on the home farm in Massillon township, Elhanan Borah had but limited educational advantages. After the death of his father he had a hard time for several years, in addition to earning his own living helping to support his widowed mother. Buying land in Massillon township in 1875, he improved the forty acres, and having been eminently successful as an agriculturist has since purchased other tracts, at one time owning over five hundred acres. Since 1911 he has sold three hundred and sixty acres of land, but still retains the ownership of his valuable farm of one hundred and twenty acres. Retiring from active labor in the fall of 1909, Mr. Borah moved to Fairfield, where he owns a fine residence and several city lots. He has also money in both of the city banks. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church and a Republican in politics. While living in Massillon township he served as school director.
Mr. Borah married, in 1875, Ada Wilson, who was born in Springfield, Illinois, in April, 1855. Her father, Benjamin Wilson, was born in Pennsylvania, of German ancestry, and died in Illinois in 1856. His wife, whose maiden name was Elizabeth Higbie, was three times married, Mr. Wilson being her third husband. She had one son by a former marriage, Edward Bitteman, now living in Lexington, Kentucky, and by her union with Mr. Wilson had six daughters. Ten children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Elhanan Borah, namely: Peter C., a farmer and merchant in Massillon township, is married and has three children, Vernie May, Perry Clayton and Gladys; William, deceased; James L., the subject of this brief sketch; Oliver C., a dentist in Olney, Illinois; Clem R. a real estate dealer in Fairfield, is married and has three children, Leonard, Oran and Donald; Blanche died at the age of four years; Mary Elizabeth, at home with her parents; Mamie, who died when twelve years old; Loco Wilson, attending the Fairfield high school; and Otto Edward. Peter C. Borah, the oldest son, also served in the Spanish American war, enlisting in Company A, Vance's Illinois Volunteers, and with his brother James accompanied the regiment to Cuba. At Jacksonville, Florida, he was stricken with typhoid fever, and from its effects has never recovered, being still a cripple.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
CHARLES R. ELLIS, miller, Wayne City, was born January 21, 1832, in Washington County Indiana. He is the son of Isaac Ellis, a native of Virginia, but reared in Kentucky. He farmed and merchandized in Indiana where he died. His father William Ellis, was a native of Virginia. The mother of our subject was Jane (Radcliff) Ellis. She is yet living, and is a daughter of David and Betsy (Brown) Radcliff. She the mother of the subject, reared nine children, five of whom are now living-William, Elizabeth Holaday, Catherine Tinsel, Mary Hulgin and Charles R., our subject who was educated in Indiana, which state he left at the age of twenty-three and went to Missouri, in 1855, where he followed his trade, which he had learned in Indiana. He lived in Newton County, MO. till 1861, when he came to Wayne County, ILL., where he milled till 1878, when he moved to Clay County, where he followed his trade, returning to this county in 1882. He is now residing in Wayne City, where he built a flouring mill, which is operated by his children, he himself having reserved an interest in the mill. He built two new mills and rebuilt several others in the County. He has owned five different mills in this county. Such men as Mr. Ellis are a valuable acquisition to any neighborhood. He was joined in matrimony, August 8, 1854, in Orange County, Indiana to Miss Nancy Carlisle, born February 3 1840 in Orange County, Indiana. She is a daughter of John and Hannah (Smith) Carlisle. He is a native of Kentucky, and she a native of Indiana. John Carlisle was a Captain in the Black Hawk War. Six children now living have come to bless this happy union-Martha J., wife of John Close; Mary E., wife of John Boswell; John D. born November 15, 1860, he married Emma J. Warsack; Anna B., born October 16, 1872, Jessie T., October 20, 1874; Francis M., born October 20, 1879. Mr. and Mrs. Ellis are highly respected members of the community in which they dwell, and also of the Christian Church. He is also an active member of the A.F. & A. M. fraternity, Johnsonville Lodge Np. 713. He lost an arm while following his vocation.
[Source: "History of Wayne and Clay Counties, Illinois," Four mile Twp. Page 130, 1884. donated by Albert Morgan]
“There is another prolific people who live further south in the vicinity of Johnsonville, in this county. They are the Forth's …
R. T. Forth is now living with third wife and has twenty six children the mothers being his first two wives, one of whom had eight and by another eighteen children. The first who was Mary Warren, and the second Amanda Flynn and a year ago he married Annie Hill, a buxom lass of twenty-three years. His youngest son is a lad 7 years old. R. T. Forth is now 73 years old.
William A. Forth or "Buck" Forth as he is familiarly called is a brother of R. T. Forth. He enjoys the distinction of having been married five times, but has had only four wives. He separated from his first, after which he successively married two other women, both he outlived. He then returned to his first love and remarried her, and upon her death, he for the fifth time married and is now living with his fourth wife. He is 71 years old and is the father of twenty-three children.
There is still another brother, John Forth who is says to have obeyed the divine injunction to increase and multiply. He is residing with his third wife, is 75 years old, and is even with his brother "Buck" in the number of children having twenty-three boys and girls born to him. It will be seen that the aggregate number of children of the three brothers foots up seventy-two children. The Forth’s do well as farmers and get a good living from tilling the soil. It is said that when R. T. Forth married his young wife a year ago he settled $10,000.00 on her.”
[“Xenia's History 1834-1934,” page 42 - Submitted by a Friend of Free Genealogy, thanks!]
Deacon William Harshbarger was born August 8th 1820 (church minutes read Lawrence Co., Ohio), (Census records read Virginia.'), was married to Emily Sprouse (actually Emily Brown) August 5th, 1841.
The same fall moved to Illinois and settled in Jefferson County, soon after removing to Hamilton Co., and thence to Long Prairie, Wayne County.
In 1852 professed a hope in Christ and united with the Long Prairie Baptist Church where he and his wife enjoyed the companionship of each other and basked in the smiles of a loving savior till the Master said to her, "It is enough" and called her home August 3rd, 1889. To William Harshharger & wife were born 12 children. Three boys and 6 girls' survive him, nearly all of whom are striving to meet him in that better land. After the death of his companion he seemed very lonely till Sept the 16th 1891 he married Mrs. Hellen Calhoun, who was a stranger to the love of God, but his earnest devotion and sincere desire for her eternal welfare soon brought her trembling to the feet of the dear Savior who wonderfully blessed her in the pardon of his sins. From that day to his death his family was a pleasant and agreeable one where happiness in the love of the blessed Redeemer reigned supreme.
William Harshbarger was elected and ordained as a Deacon of Long Prairie Church soon after his conversion and membership remained till November 1891 when he was granted a letter of dismission to join Sugar Camp Church. His membership remained at Sugar Camp till Nov. 1892 when he returned to Long Prairie Church.
His death was on May the 31st 1894.
[Source: From the "Long Prairie Baptist Church Minutes" - submitted by Dorman Wright. ]
R. A. JENKINS, farmer, P.O. Wayne City.
This gentleman, who is a resident of that part of Four Mile Township which is known as "Frog Island", was born February 15, 1843, in Wayne County, Ill. His father, R. F. Jenkins, was a native of Pennsylvania and came to Wayne County, Ill., when about twelve years old. Here he farmed, and finally died in February, 1877. The mother of our subject, Sarah (Bothwell) Jenkins, is a native of Tennessee. She is yet living, and is the mother of twelve children, of whom eight are now living. She is an esteemed lady, the daughter of James Bothwell, a farmer by occupation. Our subject received a limited school education in this county, and was married here September 25, 1863, to Miss Louisa Harshberger, born August? 27, 1842, in Illinois. She is a daughter of William and Emily (Spouse) Harshberger. Eight children came to bless this happy union --- Mara A. (wife of John Graham), Sarah Williams, Richard, Lilie, Victoria, Saratany and Gregg. Mr. and Mrs. Jenkins are members of the Missionary Baptist Church, and highly esteemed members of society in general. He has served his township in the capacity of Commissioner of Highways and School Director. Politically, our subject is inclined to the Democratic party. His fine farm of 160 acres is kept in a high state of cultivation, and from year to year he adds a few new improvements, indicating the progressive farmer.
NOTE: Should be Emily BROWN ; William Harshbarger married Emily Brown - her step-father's name was Sprouse, her real father died when she was young.
Donated By Michael Von Gebel
Charles C. Johnson
Courteous, efficient and painstaking, Charles C. Johnson, county clerk of Wayne county, is administering the affairs of his office wisely, conscientiously and with a thoroughness that has proved entirely satisfactory to all with whom he has business dealings.
A son of A. R. Johnson, he was born in Wayne county, Illinois, on an Elm River township farm. He is of Irish ancestry, his great-grandfather, John Johnson, a native of Ireland, having immigrated to America when young, settling in Pennsylvania, where he married a native daughter of Pennsylvania of German descent. His grandfather, George Johnson, was born in Ohio, August 24, 1826. Migrating to Southern Illinois in 1843, he settled in Wayne county, and is still living in Cisne, a venerable and highly respected man of eighty-six years. He married Nancy Trotter, who was of Scotch-Irish ancestry. She died in 1892.
Born in Wayne county, Illinois, January 10, 1860, A. R. Johnson has devoted his energies to the development of the soil, and as a farmer and live stock raiser has met with unquestioned success, his farm of two hundred and eighty acres, located in Elm River township, being one of the best improved and most desirable in that locality. Prominent in public affairs, he has held various official positions, including those of township supervisor and collector.
A. R. Johnson married Olive Brown, who was born in Flora, Clay county, Illinois, July 28, 1862, a daughter of William Brown, and granddaughter of Isaac Brown, who was of Irish descent, and for many years a resident of Ohio. William Brown, a native of Ohio, migrated to Illinois in 1854, locating in Clay county, where he lived until his death, in December, 1864. His wife, whose maiden name was Lucy J. Murphy, was of Scotch-Irish lineage, and the descendant of a family that moved from Tennessee to Illinois in pioneer days. Mrs. Lucy J. (Murphy) Brown survived her husband but a few weeks, passing away in January, 1865. Six children were born of the union of Mr. and Mrs. A. R. Johnson, as follows: Charles C., the special subject of this brief sketch; James Alvis, living in Wayne county, near Cisne; Mrs. Lucy J. Hubble, of Clay county; Mrs. Maud Hill, of Chicago, where her husband is employed as a bookkeeper; Ross Leroy, engaged in farming near Jeffersonville; and Mrs. Olive Mabel Hubble, of Wayne county.
Growing to manhood on the home farm, Charles C. Johnson acquired his education in the common schools and at Orchard City College, in Flora, Illinois. Engaging in educational work at the age of nineteen years, he taught school in Wayne county six terms, when, in March, 1902, he was made deputy county clerk. Resigning the position at the end of sixteen months, Mr. Johnson farmed and taught school for three years. In the summer of 1906 he was the Republican nominee for county clerk, and made a strong canvass against heavy odds for the nomination, which he secured. At the election he received a majority of three hundred and eighty-four votes, heading his entire ticket, a victory, indeed, for a young man of twenty-five years, with no special pull. In 1910 Mr. Johnson was re-elected to the same position, and led his ticket by two hundred and sixty votes over all other candidates, being elected by eight hundred and eighteen majority, and is now serving his second term as county clerk. He has accumulated considerable property, having two hundred and forty-eight acres of land, lying in Elm River township, northeast of Fairfield, two hundred acres being bottom land, from which he is developing a rich and fertile farm.
Fraternally Mr. Johnson is a member of Fairfield Lodge, Ancient Free and Accepted Order of Masons; and of Olney Lodge, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. He is an active member of the Methodist Episcopal church, with which he united at the age of seventeen years.
Mr. Johnson married, in 1906, Jennie W. Todd, who was born in Montgomery county, Illinois, a daughter of David J. and Sarah (Bothwell) Todd. Her father was born and reared in Ohio, and on coming from there to Southern Illinois located first in Clay county, later removing to Montgomery county. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson have two children, namely: Lowell C. and Vernette.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
James Henry Kramer
A man of distinctive force and energy, James Henry Kramer is a prominent factor in the promotion of the industrial and mercantile interests of Wayne county, having for the past five years been secretary, treasurer and general manager of the Southern Illinois Lumber Company, which has its main yard and office in Fairfield, and in January, 1912, he was elected president of the Southern Illinois Lumber Association.
A son of Henry Kramer, he was born October 24, 1855, on a Wabash county, Illinois, farm. His paternal grandfather, Henry Kramer, Sr., emigrated from Prussia to America with his family, settling in Allentown, Pennsylvania, where he spent a few years, and then removed to Wabash county, Illinois. He was a shoemaker and farm owner. His death occurred when he was about eighty years of age.
Born in May, 1830, in Saarbruck, Prussia, Henry Kramer came with his parents to the United States when a boy, and in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and Wabash county, Illinois, was reared and educated. In 1873 he came to Wayne county, where he is now living, his home being near Fairfield. He married Martha Colverley who was born in Beverly, England, and came with her parents to this country in 1842.
Twelve children were born of their union, three of whom died in infancy and two in later life, Samuel passing away at the age of forty years, and William when eighteen years of age. The seven now, in 1912, living are as follows: Hon. E. C. Kramer, of East Saint Louis; T. A., an attorney in El Dorado, Kansas: R. J., engaged in the practice of law at East Saint Louis; H. S., a real estate dealer in East Saint Louis: James Henry, the special subject of this brief personal record; Mrs. Sophia Bell, of El Dorado, Kansas; and Clara, living with her parents.
Receiving his rudimentary education in the district schools, James Henry Kramer afterwards attended the high school and a normal school in Indiana. He assisted in the care of the home farm until attaining his majority, and the ensuing nine years taught school, principally in the vicinity of Fairfield, his parents having settled in this part of Wayne county in 1873. Proving himself a most capable and efficient instructor and manager, Mr. Kramer in 1886 was elected superintendent of the Wayne county schools, and served in that capacity for eight years. Embarking in the real estate business in 1894, he dealt in realty and farmed for six years. In 1900 he purchased a third interest in a
lumber yard, and for a number of years carried on a substantial business as junior member of the firm of Dickey, Summers & Kramer, each year extending his operations. In 1907 this firm was incorporated under the name of the Southern Illinois Lumber Company, which owns in addition to its original yard in Fairfield, yards in Wayne City, Mill Shoals, Cisne, Enfield, Albion, Dahlgren, West Salem and Ashley. Individually Mr. Kramer owns a yard in Ridgway.
This enterprising firm has a capital of $63,500, while the amount of stock in its numerous yards is about $50,000, and its annual business aggregates $150,000 or more. Its original officers were men of acknowledged ability, F. M. Brock being president; T. L. Dickey, vice president; James H. Kramer, secretary, treasurer and general manager.
The staunch adherent of the Republican party, Mr. Kramer has faithfully fulfilled his obligations as a loyal citizen, and for one term served as mayor of Fairfield. Fraternally he is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Order of Masons; of the Independent
Order of Odd Fellows; and of the Modern Woodmen of America. Religiously he is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church. He is a stockholder and director of the Fairfield National Bank, of which he was one of the twelve men that organized the institution.
Mr. Kramer married, in 1883, Ellen Wilson, a daughter of John Wilson, and they have three children, namely: Mrs. Hayward Yohe, who has three children, Richard, Ellen Wilson and Theodore Graydon; Mrs. Camille Topper, who has two children, Frances Margaret and James Henry; and Theodore James, having charge of the lumber yard at Ridgway, is married and has one child, Henry Randolph Kramer.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
Edward A. Martin
Occupying an assured position among the substantial business men of Fairfield, Edward A. Martin has for many years been intimately associated with the development and advancement of its agricultural, industrial and mercantile prosperity, as a man and a citizen being held in high repute.
A son of Thomas A. Martin, he was born February 23, 1868, in Clay county, Illinois, on a farm, coming from pioneer stock. His great-grandfather on the paternal side migrated from Virginia to Kentucky at an early day, and in 1816 became a pioneer settler of Wayne county, Illinois. One of his uncles, a Joseph Martin, established, as early as 1800, a mill near Martins creek in Wayne county, it being the first mill operated by horse power in the county. Mr. Martin's grandfather, James D. Martin, was born in Virginia in 1818, and died in Clay county, Illinois, in 1872. He married Jane White, and they reared several children.
Thomas A. Martin was born in Wayne county, Illinois, February 19, 1841, and grew to man's estate on the parental homestead. In 1861 he moved to Clay county, and having established a store at Clay City conducted it successfully for a few years. Settling in Fairfield, Wayne county, in 1873, he embarked in mercantile pursuits, opening a large mercantile establishment, which, as head of the firm of Martin & Summers, he operated until his death, in 1892, being one of the foremost merchants of the city.
Thomas A. Martin was twice married. He married first, in 1864, Ann Golliher, a daughter of Henry Golliher, who came from Ohio to Illinois in pioneer days. She died in 1870, having borne him three children, as follows: Mrs. Lillie M. Wood, who has resided in York county, Nebraska, since 1888; Edward A., the subject of this brief biographical sketch; and a child that died in infancy. He married for his second wife Nancy McCollum, and they became the parents of four children, namely: Mary E., who died in 1874; Henry T., an attorney in Chicago, is in partnership with Edward D. Pomeroy, and has offices at 277 Dearborn street; Mrs. Grace E. Link, of Springfield, Missouri; and Frank C., a lieutenant in the United States navy, now serving on board the "Ohio".
Educated in the Fairfield schools and at the old Hayward College, Edward A. Martin spent his vacations in Martin & Summers' store, and after leaving school was for two years employed in the Fairfield Woolen Mills. Going to Nebraska in 1884, he was employed on a farm for four years, and in a planing mill in Missouri for two years. Returning to Fairfield in 1890, Mr. Martin worked in a lumber yard for two years, when, in October, 1892, he embarked in the hardware business with Mr. Foster. In February, 1895, he bought out his partner's interest in the business, which he managed satisfactorily until January 20, 1911, when he sold out.
Mr. Martin was actively engaged in farming during the year 1911, and on January 1, 1912, opened a real estate office in Fairfield, where he is meeting with most encouraging results considering the brief time that he has been dealing in realty. Mr. Martin owns a valuable estate, "The Banner Land Farm", which is advantageously located about six miles from Fairfield, it being one of the choice farms of this part of the county.
Politically Mr. Martin is identified with the Democratic forces, and has served as supervisor of Grover township. Fraternally he is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Order of Masons, belonging to lodge and chapter; of the Knights of Pythias; and of the Modern Woodmen of America. Religiously he is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Mr. Martin married, September 26, 1892, Lydia A. Smith, a daughter of William and Amanda C. Smith, her father having been a veteran of the Civil war. Four children have brightened the union of Mr. and Mrs. Martin, namely: Thomas W., Clarence S., Mildred A. and Leona A.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
Virgil Wilson Mills
Eminently worthy of representation in a work of this character is Virgil Wilson Mills, of Fairfield, a native-born son of Wayne county, who is now rendering excellent service as county judge of the county. A son of John Mills, his birth occurred at Mount Erie, Illinois, March 16, 1879.
John Mills was born in 1838, in Tuscarawas county, Illinois, a son of John Mills, Sr. He was of Scotch-Irish stock, although his immediate ancestors immigrated from England to the United States, settling first in New England. A short time prior to the outbreak of the Civil war he moved to Illinois, settling on a farm in Wayne county. Subsequently enlisting in Company E, Fortieth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, he went to the front with his command, and in April, 1862, at the Battle of Shiloh, was so severely wounded that he was confined in the hospital for a year. Being discharged in 1863, he returned to his home, and was there engaged in general farming until his death, March 11, 1910. He married Katherine Young, and into their household three children were born, as follows: Virgil Wilson, with whom this brief sketch is principally concerned; John E., living on the old farm in Mount Erie, Wayne county; and Frank, a farmer, living near Mount Erie.
Acquiring his rudimentary education in the public schools, Virgil W. Mills continued his studies at the Southern Collegiate Institute, in Albion, Illinois. Beginning his active career in 1900, he taught in the rural schools of Wayne county for two years, afterwards being similarly employed in Fairfield one year, and one year each in Mount Erie and Cisne. His tastes, inclinations and ambitions being turned towards the legal profession, Mr. Mills entered the office of Creighton & Thomas in 1907, and under their tuition became familiar with the technicalities of law. In the fall of 1910 he was a candidate for the office of county judge, being the nominee of the Republican party, and was elected by a good majority. In this capacity Judge Mills displays excellent judgment and discrimination, and is performing the duties devolving upon him in a most creditable and satisfactory manner. He is successful in his profession, and has an interest in two hundred and ninety acres of fine farming land.
Judge Mills married, in October, 1907, Grace Vandaveer, a daughter of George W. Vandaveer, of Mount Erie, and into their pleasant home two children have been born, namely: Carroll Vandaveer and John. [History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
JAMES F. PRICE
It was in that great nursery of American enterprise, resourcefulness and good citizenship, the ample farming life of our country, that James F. Price acquired the salient characteristics of manly independence, undoubting self-reliance and vigorous industry which have enabled him to forge ahead in the struggle for supremacy among men, and build up a competence for himself and secure a lasting place in the esteem and confidence of is fellows. He was born in Wayne county, Illinois, on July 22, 1850, the son of James and Elizabeth Price, the former a native of England and the latter of Indiana. Somewhat earlier in their married life they moved to Illinois, and there they passed the remainder of their days, the father dying there in 1881, after surviving his wife a quarter of a century, she having died in 1856. He was a Freemason and an Odd Fellow, and politically belonged to the Republican party. They had three children, Edward, Fannie and James F., all of whom are living. James, the last born, grew to the age of eighteen on the paternal homestead and was educated at the district schools in the vicinity of his home. He remained in his native state until 1869, then moved to Minnesota, where he passed one summer as a farm hand at small wages. Returning then to Illinois, he settled in Jefferson county and spent ten years farming on his own account. In 1879 he came to Colorado and located near Denver, where he worked as a saw-mill and ranch hand for a time. His next move was to Rathbone, and here he engaged in freighting between that place and Georgetown until 1881. In that year he became a resident of Routt county, homesteading on a part of his present ranch and subsequently adding the rest by purchase. He now has two hundred and forty acres, of which one hundred and fifty acres are under cultivation with good annual results in hay, grain and hardy vegetables, although cattle and hay are his principal products. He was among the first settlers in this section of the county, and he has been prominently connected in a serviceable way with all its improvements, local and general. The buildings on and the productiveness of his own land are the results of his own industry and thrift, and much that is of real aid to the development and progress of the neighborhood has had abundant help for him. Fraternally he is connected with the Masonic order, and in politics he is a devoted Republican. His ranch is well located, six miles northwest of Steamboat Springs, in a region renowned for its fertility and still undeveloped possibilities, its resources being as yet but slightly stirred, but as they are in the hands of a highly progressive and enterprising people, among whom he has an elevated rank as a promoter, the day of their full development and usefulness is not far distant. All honor to the men of brain and brawn who have taken this wilderness in hand and made it begin to blossom as the rose. [Source: Progressive Men of Western Colorado, Publ 1905. Transcribed by Richard Ramos]
As cashier of the First National Bank of Fairfield, Walter Sons is actively identified with one of the solid institutions of Wayne county, the sound financial basis upon which it rests being partly due to his tact and ability. He was born January 17, 1882, near Jefferson, Wayne county, Illinois, on the farm of his father, Oliver P. Sons. He is of pioneer stock, his grandfather, James Sons, who was accompanied by his brother William, having in the forties migrated from Tennessee to Southern Illinois, settling on land near Enterprise.
Oliver P. Sons was born in Wayne county, Illinois, in 1849, and has here spent his life, during his active career having been successfully engaged in agricultural pursuits, and is one of the leading citizens of the neighborhood. He married Mary Ellen Harmon, a daughter of Daniel and Mahala (Alford) Harmon, who migrated from Ohio to Wayne county in 1844. Eight children blessed their union, as follows: Walter, the subject of this brief biographical review; Jesse L., engaged in farming two miles north of Fairfield; Mrs. Laura Cravens, living near Logan, Kansas; Charles and Clayton, living with their parents; Mrs. Carrie Gaston, of Sims, Illinois; and Vena and Lorene, living at home. Mr. and Mrs. Sons are members of the Baptist church.
Completing his early studies in the public schools of Jeffersonville, Walter Sons taught school for a year, after which he took a course of study at the Southern Illinois Normal University in Carbondale. On September 12, 1903, Mr. Sons entered the First National Bank of Fairfield as bookkeeper, and proved himself so capable and faithful that on March 1, 1911, he was made cashier of the bank, of which he is also a director. He is a landholder, owning some good farming lands in Wayne county.
Mr. Sons married, December 7, 1910, Mary S. Dickey, a daughter of T. L. Dickey, a well-known merchant of Fairfield. Fraternally Mr. Sons is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Order of Masons, and religiously he and his wife attend the Methodist Episcopal church.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
George A. Staley
A well-known and prosperous business man of Fairfield, George A Staley is not only an insurance agent and real estate dealer, but negotiates loans, his operations in each line being quite extensive. A native of Illinois, he was born April 10, 1849, on a farm in White county, near Epworth, being a son of Samuel M. and Harriet (Melrose) Staley, and a brother of U. S. Staley.
After leaving the public schools of his native county, George A. Staley spent a year at the State Normal School in Normal, Illinois, and three years at McKendree College, being a member of that institution from 1870 until 1873. The ensuing two years Mr. Staley taught in Grayville, under Professor J. H. Bromley. Settling in Fairfield, Wayne county, in 1875, he engaged in the hardware business with his father, and under the administration of President Arthur served as deputy postmaster under General T. W. Scott.
Going to the far west in 1888, Mr. Staley located in Oregon, and for six years was bookkeeper in a wholesale hardware concern. Returning to Fairfield in 1894, he has since been actively engaged in the loan, insurance and real estate business, in his undertakings being fairly successful. He has acquired title to large tracts of land, being owner of eight hundred acres in Missouri; eighty acres near Fair Grounds, at Fairfield, Missouri; one hundred and sixty acres near Sims, Illinois; and has an interest in twelve hundred acres of the finest land in Arkansas, it being located in Marion county. He has established a profitable loan business, and as an insurance agent represents the Boston Insurance Company and the Citizens' Insurance Company of Chicago.
Mr. Staley married, December 30, 1874, S. Amelia Merritt of Bloomington. Illinois, a daughter of John and Caroline (Bishop) Merritt, natives of Tarrytown, New York, and they have one child, John M. Staley, of Los Angeles, California, who is associated with the Bell Telephone Company as a railway contractor. Fraternally Mr. Staley is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and religiously he is affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal church. Politically he is a firm supporter of the principles of the Republican party.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
Ulla S. Staley
A man of sound judgment and excellent business ability, Ulla S. Staley has for many years been an active force in advancing the financial prosperity of Wayne county, as cashier of the Fairfield National Bank of Fairfield being intimately acquainted with the material resources of this section of Southern Illinois, which are being rapidly and wisely developed. A son of Samuel Martin Staley, he was born July 30, 1854, in Grayville, White county, Illinois, where he grew to man's estate.
Samuel Martin Staley was born in Tennessee, in 1823, and as a boy came to Southern Illinois. Beginning life for himself in White county, Illinois, he carried on general farming on rented land for a time, and then went to Grayville, where he was engaged in mercantile and milling business until 1875, meeting with fair success. Coming then with his family to Wayne county, Illinois, he first embarked in the hardware business, and later, as an orchardist, cultivated fruit on an extensive scale, having under his care one hundred acres of apple and pear trees, mostly apples. For a few years after retiring from horticultural pursuits he carried on a grocery business in Fairfield, remaining a resident of this part of the state until his death, February 13, 1908, when past eighty-five years of age. He was a man of deep religious convictions, and a valued member of the Methodist Episcopal church. He married, first, Harriet Melrose, who died in 1859. Of the five children born of their marriage three died in infancy and two are living, as follows:
Ulla S., the special subject of this brief sketch, and George A., a real estate dealer in Fairfield. Samuel Martin Staley married for his second wife Rebecca Melrose, who died in 1869, leaving three children, namely: Charles M., in the patent office at Washington, D. C., has been in the government employ since 1881; Mrs. Harriet S. Craig, of Dallas, Texas; and John E., of Portland, Oregon. Mr. Staley married for his third wife Mrs. Sarah J. Allen, who survives him. They had one child, Ella, who died in 1899.
Obtaining his preliminary knowledge in the public schools of Grayville, Ulla S. Staley attended the Illinois Wesleyan University, in Bloomington, for two years. At the age of twenty-one years he began his career as a teacher, and taught successfully one year in McLean county and one year in White county. Coming to Fairfield in 1877, he immediately accepted a position in the bank of E. Bonham & Company, and remained with them as assistant and cashier until their failure in 1893. The bank with which he is now connected was first organized as a private institution, on March 1, 1894, by twelve prominent citizens of Fairfield, and conducted as such until February 4, 1903, when it became the Fairfield National Bank of Fairfield. The bank is in a flourishing condition, and has for its officers men of ability and good standing, Adam Rinard being president; George W. Johns, first vice-president; E. W. Pendleton, second vice-president; Ulla S. Staley, cashier; and Asa F. Keene, assistant cashier. Its directors at this time are as follows: Adam Rinard, George W. Johns, E. W. Pendleton, Harry K. Johnson, E. Steiner, C. W. Summers, John M. Rapp, Jacob R. Creighton, C. C. Boggs; and James H. Kramer, all of whom, with the exception of Mr. Boggs, were members of the original company. The bank is capitalized at $70,000, and has deposits of $280,000, with surplus resources of $425,000, and pays two and three per cent interest on time deposits. Mr. Staley is likewise one of the directors of the Farmers Bank at Mount Erie, Illinois. He is also interested in farm land, owning, with three other men, six hundred and forty acres near Sims, and having title to one hundred acres in Arkansas.
Mr. Staley has been three times married. He married first, in April, 1879, Elizabeth Johnson, a daughter of Mrs. Barbara Ann Johnson, who was born in Ohio eighty-seven years ago, and is now living in Illinois, having come to this state with her parents when a child. Mrs. Elizabeth Johnson Staley passed to the higher life in 1881, leaving one child, Mrs. Libble Byer. Mr. Staley married, in May, 1886, Ida M. Morey, a daughter of John Morey, who was born in December, 1828, and is now living in Watertown, South Dakota. She died in 1894, leaving two children, Mary Morey Staley and Harriet Florence Staley. In 1898 Mr. Staley married for his third wife Anna M. Melrose, a daughter of Frank Melrose, and of their union three children have been born, namely: Janet M. Staley; George Frederick Staley, who lived but six short years; and Samuel M. Staley. Mr. and Mrs. Staley are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.
[History of Southern Illinois, 1912, submitted by Cathy Danielson]
Although made an orphan at the age of seventeen by the death of his father, Mr. Staton did not experience the hardships often incident to that condition, for his father had been thrifty and was able to leave enough for the support and education of his children, and so they were properly prepared for the battle of life, and he received careful rearing at the hands of his mother. He was born in Wayne county, Illinois, on March 14, 1844, and is the son of Wesley and Elizabeth (Cisna) Staton, the former a native of Kentucky and the latter of Ohio. They settled in Illinois while the Indians were still numerous there, and suffered many of the privations and dangers of early frontier life. The father was a manufacturer of hats during the earlier portion of his life, but in later years devoted his energies to farming and operating a grist-mill. He was successful in business and stood well in his community. In political relations he was an uncompromising Democrat, and in religious faith a Methodist, his wife also belonging to that church. He died in 1851 and she in 1893. They had a family of nine children, four of whom survive them: Elizabeth, wife of Samuel Ellis, living near Arlington, Illinois; Hyrcanus, living near Glenwood Springs, this state; Caleb L., living in Oklahoma; and Franklin P., living at Eagle, Colorado. Hyrcanus was educated at the public schools and the Southern Illinois College, and secured enough book learning to qualify him to teach school. He began work in this line in his home county, and continued it there thirteen years. He then, in 1880, came to Colorado, and during the next two years was engaged in the same pursuit at Golden and Malta. The next three years were passed by him in conducting a dairy at Leadville, which he found to be a profitable business, the average price of milk during the period being eighty cents a gallon. In 1885 he chased the squatter’s right to the ranch he now owns and operates, and which he has improved and brought to productiveness. It is located seven miles south of Glenwood Springs, in Garfield county, and comprises one hundred and fifty-three acres, one hundred and twenty acres being under cultivation. The water right is good and the supply sufficient, and hay, grain and potatoes of excellent quality are produced in abundance, and cattle are also raised extensively. Mr. Staton has, in addition to his ranching and cattle industries, been the local representative of the National Mutual Fire Insurance Company of Denver for the last six years and has also served for a number of years as the school furnishing agent. He was married on November 2, 1873, to Miss Margaret M. Holmes, a native of Carroll county, Ohio, but reared in Wayne county, Illinois, the daughter of William and Martha (Wisman) Holmes, the father born in Pennsylvania and the mother in Ohio. They located in Illinois in the early days of its history and there became prosperous farmers. The father was a man of public-spirit and took great interest in the affairs of the community in which he lived. In Ohio he served a number of years as county clerk and auditor. In politics he was an ardent Democrat, and both were members of the Presbyterian church. Four children were born to them, Eli, Mrs. Staton, Mary, wife of William Westfall, of Glenwood Springs, and George, of Canon City. The mother died in 1867 and the father in 1885. They were Presbyterians. Mr. and Mrs. Staton have had eight children. One died in infancy and a son named Charles C. in more advanced life. The six living are William F., Gertrude, wife of Marcus L. Shippee, living at Emma, Colorado; Herbie G., residing at Franklin, California; Elbert Forest; M. Leta, a school teacher, and Cana Ivan. As a business man, a public official, a good citizen and a promoter of every commendable enterprise for the advancement of his country and section of the state, Mr. Staton has been faiathful and serviceable, and on his demonstrated merit he has attained to a high standing in the regard and good will of his fellow men. He has won success and consequence in Colorado, and is loyal to every interest of the state and every proper ambition of her people. [Source: "Progressive Men of Western Colorado", Publ 1905. Transcribed by Kim Mohler]
Harvey Valentine, whose success as a wholesaler of meats has brought him to a position of prominence in the commercial life of Terre Haute where he has been connected with the meat business for the past thirty-two years, was born at Greencastle, Pa. May 1, 1871, the son of Isaac and Amanda (Miller) Valentine. Mr. Valentine moved to Middletown, Ind., with his parents when he was four years old, and in that city attended the public school. In 1884, he moved with his parents to Fairfield, Ill., and two years later came with them to Terre Haute. His father opened a meat market at Twelfth and Poplar streets on April 17, 1890, and Mr. Valentine immediately started working for him. He continued in his father's employ until he was able to buy out that gentleman's interests in the business on August 1, 1897, from which time until 1907 he continued the business on his own initiative. On September 15, 1907, he organized the firm known as Valentine & Company, Wholesale Fresh Meats, starting in business in the present location at Taylorville with a capital of $520. That there was a demand for a business of this nature at Terre Haute has been demonstrated to his utmost satisfaction, the business having grown from its humble beginnings to be a business of $750,000 a year. The output of the plant is about 300 hogs, 80 cattle, 50 sheep and calves and 8,000 pounds of sausage a week. The officers of the company are: Harvey Valentine, president; I. T. McGlone, secretary; Miss Lena Valentine, treasurer. Mr. Valentine married Ida C. Dickey of Fairfield, Ill., on May 18, 1898, and four children have been born to them, Lena, Mildred, Carl and Dorothy. The father of Mrs. Valentine was a well-known resident of Fairfield, and served as sheriff of Wayne county, Illinois. Mr. Valentine is a stanch supporter of the Democratic party, and takes a good citizen's interest in all civic affairs. He was city councilman during the Lyons administration, serving with credit to himself and to the satisfaction of his constituents from 1908 to 1912. He is a member of the Sons of Veterans, the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce and the Knights of Pythias.
Source: "History of Indiana from its exploration to 1922", Volume 3 - By Logan Esarey, William F. Cronin. Transcribed by K. Torp
A native of Illinois, born on March 14, 1831, and reared on a farm in that state, then going at the age of twenty-one to Iowa and for six years farming the productive soil of that state and following this with four years of the same occupation in Nebraska, when he came to Colorado in 1862, Thomas Virden, of Mesa county, was well prepared for the business of farming and raising stock in which he is now profitably engaged. And he was also thoroughly imbued with the spirit of the West and, ready for any phase of life it might lay before him, having had experience in a variety of pursuits particularly incident to the state of this country at the time of and for years after his arrival here. His parents were William and Martha (Williamson) Virden, the former a native of Delaware and the latter of New Jersey. The father was by occupation a farmer, and followed that line of useful industry in native state, Kentucky, Illinois and Iowa. In the last named state he died in 1863, aged sixty-seven years. His widow survived him thirty-three years, dying in Iowa in 1886, at the age of ninety-four. Their offspring numbered nine, Thomas being the ninth. He remained in his native state and on the paternal homestead until he was twenty-one years old, then went to Iowa, where he was engaged in farming six years, and by industry and capacity he made his work profitable. At the end of the period named he moved to Nebraska where he remained four years farming and carrying the mails. Deciding then that there was greater opportunities for him in the farther West, he came to Colorado, and settling at Denver, then a small but promising city, he conducted a flourishing freighting business between that place and Omaha for five years. He next located in Fremont county, this state, and turned his attention to farming and raising stock, which he continued for about fifteen years in that county, then moved to Ouray county, where he was occupied in the same industry until 1888, at which time he moved to where he now lives, and where he has developed and improved his property into a fine ranch and his business into one of large proportions and profitable returns. Wherever he has lived Mr. Virden has taken an earnest interest in public affairs and rendered good service to his district and county. He was assessor of Fremont county in 1872, and when the Indian outbreak occurred he volunteered as a member of the Third Colorado Regiment and was for one hundred days in the war that was waged against the savages, taking part in several contests, among them the battle of Sand creek, in which the whites lost one hundred men and the Indians five hundred. Mr. Virden was married in 1867 to Miss Emma Strong, of Shellsburg, Iowa, and they have had three children, Minnie and Walter, who are living, and Frank, who died at the age of eighteen. [Source: Progressive Men of Western Colorado, Publ 1905. Transcribed by Kim Mohler]
MRS. William White
(Julia Mariah Hart)
Julia Mariah White, daughter of Julius Caesar and Catherine Carroll Hart, was born March 18, 1827, near Canton, Ohio. When she was twenty years old, she was granted a teacher's certificate. After teaching a year, in December 1848, she married Samuel Russell. She had one son, Homer Russell. Late in 1850, she was divorced on the grounds of cruelty.
In 1856 she came to Illinois, near Fairfield, and began teaching in Wayne County the same year. On February 28,1859, she married William White. A son, Julias White, was born in 1861, and the same year, Mr. White enlisted in the Union army. He was wounded and was very sick. After much pleading, Mrs. White was permitted to go to her husband. She nursed him to convalescence, then began nursing other men. Late in 1863 both Mr. and Mrs. White returned to Illinois. Mrs. White renewed her certificate and began teaching again, her husband being an invalid till his death in 1885.
Mrs. White was a pioneer business woman, working under discouraging conditions for her country and her family. She was known and loved as "Aunt Jane Mariah" by four generations of relatives and friends. Mrs. Julia Mariah White died March 18, 1925, at Fairfield, Illinois, at the age of ninety-eight, still active, both mentally and physically.
[Transcribed by K. Torp]
David Wright, came from New Jersey to Wayne County in 1819, and settled and improved a farm three miles south of Fairfield. He started the first tan-yard in the county, using a wooden trough, which in time he increased to fourteen vats, in which he did an extensive business for those days --- tanning all kinds of hides, even hog skins. The old family Bible, now in the possession of Charles W. Wright, is covered with fawn skin tanned in his tannery. He soon opened a store and also built a horse mill, each of which were about the first of their kind in the county. People came fifteen and twenty miles to his mill on horseback, often camping to wait for their turn. The product of the mill was bolted by hand. D. W. Barkley, a grandson, says he has both lively and painful recollections of assisting in this part of the business. At least he remembers it was not so agreeable as driving the horses and riding on the beam. Mr. Wright had his merchandise hauled from Shawneetown, Mount Vernon, Ind., and Evansville, and his produce was taken to Beach Bluff and Mill Shoals and shipped to New Orleans by flat-boat. This mostly consisted of venison hams, wild turkey, honey, deer and coon skins, etc. In those days, two-horse wagons, in which were to be seen teams in harness of which not a particle of iron was used --- all home made leather, shuck collars, and hames cut from the root of a tree. When the family first came to the county, as did all others, they pounded meal in a stump mortar. The first meal from a mill was procured at Shawneetown, and until Mr. Wright's mill was put up, the nearest mill was at Carmi. Mr. Wright was a fine specimen of the hardy, thrifty pioneers. His industry never flagged, and his energy was tireless --- all of which were most admirable qualities for aiding in opening up and developing the new country. His other good qualities were only equaled by his widely known integrity, and a morality and uprightness that marked his whole life and drew around him an extended circle of warm friends. [Source: "History of Wayne County 1884"]
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