John M. (John McAuley) Palmer.

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navigable from its mouth to the place of its connection with the drainage canal
now being constructed by Chicago. Many public addresses have been delivered
by Mr. Withers on this subject, and have done much to create public opinion in
its favor throughout the entire country. Through an act of congress the work
advocated by Mr. Withers could be done, and the entire country would be bene-
fited. In a public address he said :

The very commencement of such a work by the general government would inspire
new hopes and aspiration in the hearts of the toilers of this great valley. It can easily be
demonstrated that the value of farming lands would rise all over the state. It would aid
nature in its constant effort, when unobstructed, to reclaim the bottom lands from over-
flow. It is estimated that in the Illinois river valley there are four hundred thousand acres
of uncultivated lands; these lands, if reclaimed from overflow, would annually produce
over six million dollars' worth of corn and wheat, and would support twenty thousand
families or one hundred thousand people, and sixty thousand acres of these lands lie in
Greene county. The bottom lands in this county are the richest in the state, and if re-
claimed from overflow, which dredging of the river would bring about, would give employ-
ment to eighteen hundred men and produce annually one million dollars' worth of corn
and wheat. All the counties in the valley would be correspondingly benefited. Should
the drainage of Chicago be turned into the Illinois river in its present condition it will
carry with it pestilence and disease from which the citizens of Chicago are endeavoring
to free themselves; and each year the danger of overflow will be greater, for the dams in
the river, not allowing sediment to be carried away, constantly raise the river bed; the
banks are therefore proportionately lower and overflows must increase in consequence.
The late condition of American politics, arising from the Spanish-American war and the
annexation of the Hawaiian Islands, make close connection of our inland districts with
the great waters of the globe very desirable; and should the waterway of the Illinois
and Mississippi rivers become a thing of actuality commerce would receive an impetus

Mr. Withers is even now preparing to bring suit against the United
States for five hundred thousand dollars for injuries already caused
by the Kampsville dam. This is but one of many important suits
in which he has been retained, and his law practice is large and lucrative. For
two years he had a law office in St. Louis, and for three years in Chicago, but
has never changed his place of residence from Carrollton. He made a full set
of abstract books of Greene county, now the property of his son, but his attention
has ever been given mostly to his profession, and his fidelity to his clients' inter-
ests is proverbial.


On the i8th of March, 1863, Mr. Withers was united in marriage to Miss
Fanny Woodson, the only daughter of Judge D. M. Woodson. They had two
sons, Meade W., who died at the age of sixteen years ; and William K., who has
served as county treasurer of Greene county, and is now engaged in the abstract
business. He is married and has two children : Celeste and Kennett, aged seven
and five years respectively. Of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Henry
C. Withers is a valued member, and in Masonic circles he has attained the
Knight Templar degree. Easily approachable, courteous to all, of kindly dispo-
sition and genial manner, he is surrounded by a host of warm and admiring

James R. Ward, one of the most able and leading attorneys of this congres-
sional district, is a son of McKinley and Eliza (Jones) Ward. He was born on a
farm in Madison county, Illinois, May 7, 1852, where he grew to manhood, labor-
ing upon the farm, and receiving his early education. In 1867 and 1868 he at-
tended the Lincoln University and later the Illinois College at Jacksonville,
where, in June, 1873, ne graduated. He then proceeded to Columbia, Missouri,
and began a course of law studies under Philemon Bliss, who at one time was
chief justice of the supreme court of that state. He was admitted to the bar in
the state of Illinois, at Mount Vernon, in June, 1874, and was licensed to practice
by the supreme court of Missouri, at St. Louis, June 2ist of the same year. On
September 23, following, he located in Carrollton and here first began the prac-
tice of his profession. In November, 1876, he was elected state's attorney for
Greene county by a greater vote and majority than was cast in the county for
Samuel J. Tilden. His business now increased so rapidly in civil cases that at
the expiration of his term as state's attorney he declined to be a candidate for re-
election and supported D. F. King for that position, the latter having been a law
student of Mr. Ward's. During this term of office, however, he established the
reputation of being an able and successful prosecutor of criminals, rarely losing
a case, and since that time he has been engaged as counsel in the most important
civil cases arising since he began the practice of his profession. His earnest and
faithful efforts for his clients, his careful and adroit management of a case, his
knowledge of men which he utilizes in the selection of juries, have in civil and
criminal cases secured victories for his clients. Possessing a thorough knowl-
edge of the law, a retentive memory, and uniformly giving to every case, regard-
less of the amount involved, of the wealth or poverty of his client, a thorough
and exhaustive examination and preparation, have characterized his eminent suc-
cess as a lawyer and given him the appellation of "the poor man's lawyer friend."

John G. Henderson, a prominent attorney of Carrollton, was born near
White Hall, Greene county, Illinois, September 22, 1837. His father, John P.
Henderson, was a native of Kentucky, and a son of Rev. John Henderson, one of
the pioneer Christian preachers, of Greene county. His mother, Susan (Green)
Henderson, was a native of Ohio. He was educated at Jacksonville, Illinois, and
subsequently taught school, during which time he also studied law. He after-
ward read law with John L. McConnel, of Jacksonville, and August 10, 1858,
though not yet twenty-one years of age, was admitted to the bar at Jacksonville,


to practice in Illinois. He subsequently practiced law, and also taught school
in Morgan county until 1861, when he opened a law office at Griggsville, Pike
county, and entered upon the duties of the legal profession in earnest. He after-
ward again engaged in teaching for a while, his last term being taught in 1863,
at Naples, Scott county, where he practiced law until 1866. He then located at
Winchester, and in 1877 was elected county judge of Scott county, serving in that
capacity five years. After that time he gave his entire attention to the legal pro-
fession, practicing in both Scott and Greene counties, and his practice increased
so largely in Greene county that he decided to remove to Carrollton, which he
did in February, 1884. He now resides in Chicago.

He was married April 10, 1884, to Isabel Springer, nee Hanback. In 1878,
at the St. Louis meeting of the American Association of Science, Judge Hender-
son became a member, and for two years was secretary, of the anthropological
sub-section of the association, and at the Boston meeting was elected a fellow of
the association. He has written several papers for that society, mostly on the
subject of anthropology, of which he has made a life study, and has accumulated
a fine library of works on that particular subject. He is also said to possess the
finest library in the Mississippi valley on French and Spanish works on the his-
tory of said valley. Politically speaking, he is an active Democrat, and has taken
a prominent part in politics since he attained his majority. Judge Henderson is
a member of the Illinois Natural History Society, and an honorary member of
the St. Louis Historical Society. Several of his articles have been published by
the Southwestern Society, under which institute he has done considerable scien-
tific research.

Stephen F. Corrington came to Greene county in 1858 and located at Car-
rollton, where he remained until his death, some ten years ago, thus being
one of the oldest settlers of the county. He immediately opened a law office
and entered practice. In 1859 ne was elected county superintendent of schools
and justice of the peace, both of which he held until 1869, his duties as justice,
however, not expiring until 1873. In 1870 he was elected city clerk and con-
tinued in that capacity with the exception of one year until 1883. In 1872 he
was appointed master in chancery. In October, 1881, Mr. Corrington entered
into the insurance and real-estate business, in connection with W. H. Barnett,
the style of the firm being Barnett & Corrington. In October, 1883, Mr. Bar-
nett sold his interest in the business to C. H. King, the firm then being Corring-
ton & King. In August, 1884, Mr. Corrington bought out the interest of Mr.
King and gave it to his son Frank, the firm then becoming Corrington & Son.
Mr. Corrington was born in Millersburg, Bourbon county, Kentucky, February
i, 1830, his parents being Rev. Elijah and Ailsie (Gray) Corrington, the former
of English and the latter of Irish descent. They had located in Illinois, but as
the health of Mr. Corrington was impaired they returned to Kentucky, the
mother carrying' her son on horseback to their native home. In 1833 the family
again came to Illinois, coming first to Greene county, where the father entered
and bought quite an extensive tract of land, and then settled in Jacksonville,
Morgan county, where he engaged in business. He continued in business there


for a little over a year, when he joined the Illinois conference of the Methodist
Episcopal church, and was assigned to various charges in Morgan and other
counties. He afterward removed to Carrollton, where he lived until his death,
which occurred in 1863. His wife died in December, 1862.

Stephen F. Corrington, the subject of this sketch, received his early educa-
tion in a private school in Jacksonville, and in 1848 he entered McKendree Col-
lege, at Lebanon, Illinois, where, on account of his previous preparation, he was
enabled to graduate three years later. He then taught school about six months,
in connection with his sister, who became the wife of Hon. Thomas B. Redding,
a prominent lawyer and scientist of Newcastle, Indiana. He then began the
study of law with Judge William Brown, and was admitted to the bar in 1854.
He afterward entered into partnership with William String, which continued
about a year. While in Jacksonville he was also engaged in the mercantile
business about one year, but this proving unsatisfactory he disposed of his inter-
est in the business to his partner. While there he was nominated for county
judge, but withdrew, and was nominated and ran for county clerk, but as he was
a young man, and opposed by an old and popular candidate, he was defeated by
a small vote. He was married in Jacksonville, in 1856, to Susan F. Bell, a
daughter of Jeremiah Bell, now of Jersey county. They became the parents of
nine children, six of whom are living. Rosa, wife of W. A. Albright ; Ailsie, wife
of T. P. Clemmons, both living in Carrollton ; Annie L. died at the age of fif-
teen, in December, 1876; S. Emma died in February, 1897; Frank F., in
the insurance and real-estate business at Carrollton ; Eliza E. ; William J. ; Mabel
R., who died in 1896; and Stephen N. Mr. Corrington was a prominent mem-
ber of the Odd Fellows' society, and was a member of the Methodist Episcopal
church, having been a trustee of the same for many years. In politics, he af-
filiated with the Democratic party.

H. H. Montgomery, A. M., has been a resident of this county since 1875.
He was born in Scottville, Macoupin county, Illinois, and is a son of Joseph and
Elizabeth (Sharp) Montgomery, the former a native of West Virginia and the
latter of east Tennessee. They settled in Macoupin county in 1840. The sub-
ject of this sketch was reared upon a farm, attaining his education at the uni-
versity at Galesburg and in the Blackburn University, at Carlinville, graduating
in the latter institution of learning in June, 1873. Three years later the university
conferred upon him the degree of Master of Arts. In 1874-5 he had charge of
the schools of Brighton, and the following six years of the Greenfield schools.
In 1880 he was also appointed county superintendent of schools, but at the ex-
piration of six months resigned this office to accept the editorial management of
the Carrollton Gazette. His political friends afterward placed his name be-
fore the state convention for nomination of superintendent, and out of eight
contesting candidates he was second only to the one who was successful,
Professor Raab. He continued editorial duty on the Gazette for two years, after
which he entered the law office of H. C. Withers. On Thanksgiving day, 1880,
he united his destinies with Minnie, a daughter of G. T. W. Sheffield, of Green-
field, the result of which was the birth of one son, Kenyon. Mr. Montgomery


takes an active part in whatever pertains to the advancement of education, and in
politics is a strong adherent to the principles of the Democratic party. He is a
Knight Templar Mason.

Duncan C. Mclver was born near Murrayville, Morgan county, Illinois,
August 12, 1831, being a son of William and Matilda (Cain) Mclver, natives of
North Carolina. When Duncan C. was an infant his parents removed to Ten-
nessee, and eight years later returned to Illinois and located in Jacksonville.
Two years later they removed to McDonough county, and lived near Macomb
until Duncan C. attained his fourteenth year. His parents then removed to a
point near Carlinville, Macoupin county, where they resided some four years,
then going to Montgomery county, where Duncan C. attained his majority. At
the age of eighteen years he began teaching school, which profession he fol-
lowed steadily some five years. September 17, 1854, he was united in marriage
with Mary A. Tennis, a daughter of William and Nancy (Raleigh) Tennis. By
this union they have been blessed with seven children. From the time of his
marriage until the breaking out of the war Mr. Mclver made his home in Mont-
gomery county, where he was elected county surveyor in 1857, holding the same
for four years, having been re-elected at the expiration of his first term. In 1862
he enlisted in Company F., One Hundred and Twenty-second Illinois Infantry,
as a private, and six months later was promoted from the ranks to second lieu-
tenant. At the close of the war he settled with his family at Nilwood, Illinois,
where he engaged in mercantile pursuits for two years. During that time, and
previous thereto, he had been studying law, and in 1868 was admitted to the bar
by the supreme court. He then began the practice of his profession. In 1875
he came to Roodhouse, where he practiced his profession. In 1876 he was the
nominee of the Republicans for the position of county attorney, his opponent be-
ing J. R. Ward, who was elected, his party being largely in the majority, but Mr.
Mclver ran ahead of his ticket. He was a member of Girard Lodge, I. O. O. F.,
and Jacob Fry Post, No. 193, G. A. R. Mr. Mclver's death occurred about fif-
teen years ago.

Mark Meyerstein, one of the members of the bar of White Hall, was born
at Murawano Goshlin, province of Posen, Prussia, on the 27th of October, 1836.
His parents were William and Shenetta (Leshinsky) Meyerstein, both natives of
Poland. They both died in their native country, about 1883. Mark was edu-
cated in the gymnasium at Posen, finishing at the "real schule," in Meseritz,
where he graduated in 1853. ^ n tne spring of 1854 he came to the United States,
and, after spending a short time in New York he went to Kentucky, where he
engaged at Simpsonville as a salesman. In 1855 he went to St. Louis, in the
same business, remaining there until 1860. He then went to Scottsville, Macou-
pin county, Illinois, and engaged in the mercantile business for himself. In the
month of September, 1863, he removed to White Hall, and engaged in the mer-
cantile business. This he continued until the spring of 1865, when he removed
to Carrollton. From there he went to St. Louis, in January, 1866, and engaged
in the wholesale clothing trade. After one year in that business he returned to
White Hall, and engaged in the retail dry-goods trade, which he continued two


years. In. his store he studied law, having determined to devote his life to the
legal profession, and he gave his attention to his studies with such assiduity that
he was admitted to the bar in the fall of 1867, while, still selling goods. He
opened an office in 1869 and has since continued the practice of law. In this
profession he has made for himself a reputation second to none in this part of the
state. On the i7th day of May, 1861, he was married to Mary Hettick, a
daughter of Perry and Sarah (Armstrong) Hettick. By this marriage there were
four children. Mr. Meyerstein is a member of Carrollton Lodge, No. 50, A. F.
& A. M. In his profession he holds an enviable position and enjoys an excellent

James L. Patterson, of the law firm of Patterson & Starkey, Roodhouse, is
a native of St. Louis county, Missouri, born August 29, 1846, being a son of
Lemuel J. and Ann E. (Hume) Patterson, both natives of Missouri. Lemuel
J. came to Illinois in 1844 and settled at Schutz Mills, Greene county. For
many years he was engaged in the merchandise business, and was one of the
representative men of the county, having served the people in the capacity of
sheriff four years, and justice of the peace several terms, in each of which posi-
tions he gave entire satisfaction to his constituents. James L. Patterson received
Ms preliminary education in the district schools of this county, and later attended
the Winchester high school. In his eighteenth year he began reading law, under
Judge Hodges, at Carrollton, and five years later, in 1870, was admitted to the
bar. He had previously taught school for nine years, was deputy assessor for
the same length of time, and township treasurer for five years, in Patterson town-
ship, so named in honor of his father. In October, 1877, he came to the city of
Roodhouse, and engaged in the practice of his chosen profession, in which he
has been eminently successful, now being rated as one of the most successful at-
torneys of this portion of the state. Mr. Patterson has been attorney for the
Chicago & Alton Railroad for a term of years and has a very extensive railroad
practice in addition to his general practice. The firm of which he is the head
was established February 3, 1882, and has ever since practiced in the various
courts of Illinois and Missouri, their practice being second to no other firm in
this part of the state. In March, 1868, James L. Patterson and Mary E. Wil-
mington were united in marriage. Mr. Patterson was president of the town
board at the time of the organization of Roodhouse as a city, and has been clerk
of the district board of education. In politics he is a Democrat, and has been
chosen as a delegate to the congressional conventions held in the twelfth district,
and has at various times acted as chairman of the same. Since coming to Rood-
house Mr. Patterson has done much toward the improvement of the city, being
associated with Mr. Roodhouse in the erection of many of the best buildings in
the city. They laid out the public square and did much toward bringing trade

to the city.

W M. Ward, a practicing attorney at Greenfield, is a son of Jesse and Mary
Ward, the former a native of Kentucky and the latter of Virginia. The
father of W. M. was a farmer by occupation and was among the first settlers of
Jersey county. W. M. Ward was born December 24, 1838, and attended the


common schools until he was eighteen years of age. He then took a trip to the
Rocky mountains, where he spent eight years in various occupations. He was
first engaged in mining, then was in the attorney general's office and was out on
an expedition after the red men and followed them into their mountain fastnesses,
and had some practical experience in Indian fighting. In the winter of 1867 he
returned to Brighton, and soon afterward entered the office of Asa Potter and
engaged in the study of law, in which he continued about three years. On July
26, 1870, he was united in marriage with Louisa Prosser. He left the office of
Asa Potter in 1872, and went into the employ of the Chicago & Rock Island Rail-
road Company as a machinist, where he remained one year. He then moved his
family to Greene county and engaged in the milling business, which he followed
until 1875, at which time he sold out his interest and located at Greenfield. On
May 10, 1875, he received an appointment as postmaster and June 5, got his com-
mission. In 1876 he received the appointment of notary public, was admitted
to the bar in January, 1877, and has since been engaged in the practice of law.

Thomas Henshaw was admitted to the bar in 1878 and has been practicing
law in Greene county ever since. He was located at White Hall in said county
until the year 1890, when he removed to Carrollton. He enjoys a lucrative and
extensive practice. He was state's attorney of Greene county from 1888 to 1896,
and declined to be a candidate for re-election.

Hon. David F. King.- In March, 1898, this respected citizen of Roodhouse
was nominated to the office of county judge of Greene county, Illinois, on the
Democratic ticket and since elected to that position. This honor came to him
as a result of years of untiring devotion to his profession and of a long series of
successes in the law and politics. He is a general favorite with his professional
brethren and with his fellow-citizens as well and his name has been frequently
brought forward as a candidate for one position or another, and when elected,
he has abundantly proved his ability and executive talent. The interests of
the public are dear to his heart and all measures of improvement and progress
find ready support at his hands.

Born January 9, 1853, ^ r - King is a native of Texas, the middle name Fan-
nin, being the same as the county in which he was born, while his parents were
on a visit of about a year to the state. A son of Alexander King and Mary
(Waggoner) King, who were natives of Indiana and Kentucky, respectively.
The paternal grandfather of our subject, Alexander King, removed from his
former Hoosier abode to East Carrollton, Illinois, in the early part of the '205 and
died in that locality at the advanced age of eighty-four years. Our subject's
father was a member of the legislature of this state at the time of the memorable
contest between Lincoln and Douglas and voted for the last named for the
United States senate, when Douglas was successful, January 5, 1859. (House
journal, page 32.) The common-school education gained by Mr. King in his
boyhood was supplemented by one term in the Waverly high school and a course
at Blackburn University, at Carlinville, Illinois. Afterward he attended the Iowa
Wesleyan University at Mount Pleasant, Iowa, and there studied law. Then
he became superintendent of schools of Greene county, acting as such nearly two


years, then resigning in order to accept the office of state's attorney. He suc-
ceeded himself and served from 1880 to 1888 as state's attorney. He was true
to all the duties devolving upon him and gave general satisfaction to the people
who had confided their interests to his keeping. He has been actively engaged in
the practice of law in Roodhouse for many years and stands second to none here
in his profession. October 21, 1895, he was appointed postmaster at Rood-
house, and this honor he attributes largely to the friendly offices of General
John M. Palmer and ex-Congressman Finis E. Downing, who interceded in his

Mr. King, however, was removed from the office in October, 1897, on ac-
count of his political views and speech-making for the cause of Hon. William J.
Bryan, for all of which he shows no signs of regret, but seems proud of the fact
he was an active participant in the campaign. A score of years has rolled away

Online LibraryJohn M. (John McAuley) PalmerThe bench and the bar of Illinois : Historical and reminiscent (Volume v.2) → online text (page 69 of 83)