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owned by farmers and conducted by L. B.
DeForest, under a lease.

Banking facilities are afforded by the Oneida
State Bank and the firm of Anderson and
Murdoch. The former was incorporated under
the State banking law in 1891, with a paid-up
capital of $25,000. Its stockholders number
twenty-three. A. D. Metcalf is President; G.
K. Fittard, Vice President; and W. D. Patty,
Cashier. The old Oneida Exchange Bank was a
private institution, and was founded in 1857 by
O. Sharp. He soon disposed of his banking
business by a sale to W. L. Hubbard. The lat-
ter removed to Chicago in 1867, and the bank
passed into the hands of J. B. Conyers, who
sold it, in 1872, to J. N. Conger. In 1877 it was
bought by A. B. Anderson and Frank Murdoch,
who have conducted it ever since under their
firm name.

The people of Oneida are both enterprising
and prosperous. Three times the business part
of the city has been laid in ashes, and three
times the courage of the citizens has proved
equal to the task of restoration. Pleasant, well-
cared for homes are numerous, and the in-
habitants exhibit great interest in preserving
the reputation for beauty which the place en-

The history of journalism in Oneida is of
especial interest. The first paper to appear
was the Oneida News, which was started, in
1876, by a boy named Arthur W. Ladd, and
the issue was "run off" on a three dollar press.
In 1882 J. C. Montgomery began publishing
the Oneida and Neighborhood News. In 1883



T. B. Phillips bought this paper, and
its name to the Oneida News. Three years
afterward he recovered it to Montgomery,
and subsequently it was discontinued. The
Oneida Dispatch was founded by O. B. Kail
and D. C. Porter in 1880. In 1882 Kail (who
had bought Portei-'s interest in the business)
began the publication of the Woodhull Dis-
patch. In 1886, M. A. Chesly bought out Mr.
Kail; and in 1894 he took B. J. Dunlap into
partnership, and in 1895 the name again became
the Oneida Dispatch. In 1897 Chesly and Dun-
lap sold out to Burgess and White.

Various societies have lodges, or branches,
at Oneida. The Masonic Order established its
first lodge on March 26, 1860, and is in a flour-
ishing condition. The lodge owns the fine brick
building in which its handsomely furnished
hall is situated. The present officers are; P.
Murdoch, M.; John Anderson, S. W.; Albert
Miller, J. W. ; Frank McConchie, S. D.; Thomas
Hosier, J. D.; A. J. Miller, Secretary; A. B. An-
derson, Treasurer; and R. Mihoy, T.

The I. 0. O. F. first appeared on October 15,
1857. The charter was surrendered in 1861, but
the lodge was reinstalled June 3, 1874. The
present officers are: O. L. Higgins, N. G.; Nels
Newlander, V. G.; L. W. Ewing, Secretary; A.
B. Anderson, Treasurer.

The order of the Eastern Star also has a
flourishing lodge, chartered January 15, 1889,
with twelve members. The present member-
ship numbers thirty-five. The first officers
were: Miss Kittie Brainard, W. M.; C. G.
Graved, W. P.; Mrs. Eliza Hosier, A. M.; F. T.
Prouty, Secretary. The present officers are:
Mrs. J. B. Colton, W. M.; E. Marche, W. P.;
Mrs. E. L. Miller. A. M.; G. L. Stephenson,
Treasurer; W. A. Brainard. Secretary.

The Oneida Camp of the Modern Woodmen
of America was chartered May 25, 1888, with
nine members. This membership has been in-
creased to eighty. The first officers were: A.
McConchie. V. C; G. E. Barnett. W. A.; Henry
Clifford, E. B.; S. C. Whitcomb, C. The
present officers are: H. W. Crane, V. C;
J. W. Talbot, W. A.; L. E. Olson, E. B.; W. S.
Crane, C.

There is also a branch of the Home Forum
at Oneida. The charter members numbered
twelve, and the present membership is seven-
teen. The officers are: G. L. Stephenson,
President; S. C. Whitcomb, Vice President;
F. Whitcomb, Historian; S. C. Whitcomb, Med-
ical Examiner; A. R. St. John, Secretary.


Judson Wright Allen, son of Barber and
Mary (Chappel) Allen, was born in Cayuga
County, New York, June 14, 1830. Barber Al-
len was born in Massachusetts, and was a sol-
dier in the War of 1812. J. W. Allen received
his education in Galesburg. His first effort at
self-support was when, in the early pioneer
days, as a teamster he hauled pork from Gales-
burg to Peoria. He afterwards bought a farm
of -four hundred acres in Ontario Township,
part of which he later disposed of, and bought
land near Oneida, to which he gradually added,
until he owned a farm of 330 acres of improved
land. Mr. Allen was married in Knox County
December 4, 1856, to Nancy W. Kiger. Four
children have been born to them: William L. ;
Mrs. Mary Mitchell; Mrs. Jessie E. Kourthour;
and Mrs. R. Hose Brainard, who died at the age
of twenty-one. Mr. Allen is a well informed
and broad-minded man. Among his many in-
terests, aside from nis duties as a progressive
and up-to-date farmer, may be mentioned the
subject of education, to the advancement of
which he has given much time and attention.
He is a member of the Congregational Church,
of which he was a trustee for twelve years. In
politics, he is a republican, and was Supervisor
for four years. 1882 to 1886, during which period
the present handsome court house at Galesburg
was erected. He has been Alderman of Oneida
for twelve years, which is but one of the many
evidences he has received of the confidence and
esteem of his fellow citizens.


Henry Wetmore Crane, son of James W. and
Cornelia L, (Wetmore) Crane, was born in On-
tario Township, Knox County. Illinois, July 7,
1859. The family is of English descent, their
history in this country dating back to early
times in New England. The parents of James
W. Crane were born in Connecticut, and set-
tled, immediately after their marriage, in
Oneida County, New York. James W. was the
fourth child and second son in a family of six
children. The family came to Ontario Town-
ship in June, 1837, and settled on an unbroken
prairie, where they made a farm, and where
the father of James W. died in 1848, and the
mother in 1854. The parents of Cornelia L.
Wetmore lived and died in New York State,
where her father was a successful merchant.
She came to Knox County about two years be-
fore her marriage.

Henry W. Crane was the oldest son, and was^
educated in the Oneida High School, and in '
Knox College, Galesburg. He was married in
Henry County, Illinois, September 25, 1882,
to Carrie Wood Stickney; they have three
children: Zina S., Mary Ann and James Henry.
Mrs. Crane's parents were Henry and Mary
(Wood) Stickney. old residents of Henry
County, now deceased. Mrs. Crane was born in
Henry County, and received her education in
Knox College, Galesburg.

Mr. Crane was one of the organizers of the
Oneida State Bank, and has ever since been


on its Board of Directors and also a member
of the Finance Committee; he is also a farmer,
or, more especially, a manager of farms, as he
rents his own farm and that of his wife, and
resides in Oneida, of which place he has been
a prominent citizen since 188S. He keeps his
land in a high state of cultivation by rotation
of crops, having always at least one-third of the
area in pasture, or meadow, and taking a
share of the crop instead of a money rent, has
proved for him an element of success.

In politics, Mr. Crane is independent. He
has been a member of the Board of Education,
an Alderman and Mayor, to which office he
was elected in 1895, and which, by re-election,
he has held to the present time. He is a mem-
ber of the Baptist Church of Ontario, and is a
thoroughgoing, progressive, public spirited


James Wilson Crane, son of Zina and Harriet
(Hall) Crane, was born in Marcy, Oneida
County, April 20, 1829. His parents were born
in Durham, Connecticut, and died in Knox
County, the father aged sixty-three and the
mother fifty-eight years. His paternal grand-
parents were Frederick and Anna (Babcock)
Crane, and on his mother's side. I^uther and
Harriet Hall, all of whom were born in Con-

Zina Crane, before coming West with his
family in June, 1S37, purchased three hundred
and twenty acres of unbroken prairie land in
Knox County, to which he added one hundred
and sixty acres of timber land. In coming to
Knox County he followed the example of Rev.
Geovge W. Gale, of Oneida County, and one
of the founders of Galesburg. He assisted in
the organization of Ontario Township, and was
interested in educational matters, and with
Charles F. Camp, now deceased, built the first
school house near Ontario Corners. In politics
he was a whig

James W. Crane came with his father to
Knox County and became a farmer and stock-
raiser. He attended the common schools for a
short time, but received the principal part of
his education by his own efforts. He was mar-
ried in Ontario Township, May 29. 18.54, to
Cornelia L. Wetmore. daughter of Jesse and
Louise (Holmes) Wetmore. She was born in
Oneida County, New York, September 5, 1833.
They have three children. Henry W.. now liv-
ing in Oneida; Frank, a resident of Cummings,
Traill County, North Dakota; and Carl S., now
living at the old homestead.

In early times Mr. Crane drove his stock to
Galena, thirty or forty days being required to
make the trip. He at one time added one hun-
dred and fifty turkeys to his drove of hogs
which were killed and sold to the miners. It is
said that Mr. Crane is the oldest resident of
Ontario Township; he is certainly one of the
best known and most influential" farmers in
Knox County. He has a farm of two hundred
and forty acres of choice land, a fine residence
and convenient farm buildings. He has been

very successful in his business, and formerly
had large land interests in North Dakota,
which he sold to his son Frank, who resides
in that State.

In politics, Mr. Crane is independent. He is
an attendant, of the Unitarian Church. He has
traveled extensively in the United States, is
broad and liberal in his views, and is greatly
respected and honored wherever he is known.


Joseph Fisher, son of David and Jane (Mor-
ris) Fisher, was born May 27, 1831, in Somer-
setshire, England. His parents were of English
birth, and came to Summit County, Ohio, when
Joseph was three years old. In 1838 the family
removed to Mercer County. Illinois, and in
1S41 they settled in Clover Township, Henry
County, where the father ran a saw mill. After
the death of his father, and his burial in
Andover Cemetery, which occurred in January,
1844, Joseph and his mother came to Knox
County, settling first in Sparta Township, but
later purchased a farm of eighty acres in On-
tario Township, where the mother died, aged
seventy-four years.

Joseph Fisher was educated in the common
schools of Ohio and Illinois. He was married
October 20, 1852, to Emily, daughter of Wood-
ford Fisher, of Kentucky, who was an old set-
tler of Knox County. She died November 15,
1888, aged fifty-four years, leaving an adopted
daughter, Nellie.

Mr. Fisher was again married, October 30.
1890, in Knox County, to Elizabeth, daughter
of Vile and Jane (Kember) Pittard, who came
from England to Chicago in 1854, and in 1855
removed to Knox County, where they died in
Ontario Township.

Mr. Fisher and his wife own eighty and one
hundred and sixty acres of land, respectively,
in tracts adjoining each other, making a fine
farm of two hundred and forty acres. He has
been a farmer all his life. He is a republican
and has held several local offices. Mr. and
Mrs. Fisher attend the Ontario Congregational
Church, of which Mrs. Fisher is a member.


Gustav Eric Fredericks, son of Charles and
Inga Charlotte Fredericks, was born October
23, 1852, in the Province of Ostergotland,
Sweden. His parents were both born in
Sweden, his father in Ostergotland. He came
with his parents to this country, reaching Knox
County. Illinois, July 17, 1857. They lived two
years in Galesburg. and then moved to Soper-
ville. Henderson Township, where they resided
on a timber farm from 1S.19 to 18(17, when they
removed to Log City, remaining there until
1870. then they removed to Ontario Township,
where they bought a farm of one hundred and
sixty acres tor $13,000. In 1878 the parents
removed to Altona. Walnut Grove Township.
Gustav E. bought the farm on Section 11, ad-
joining the old homestead, in 1896. where he
now resides. The father was a very successful
farmer, and owned five hundred and twenty



acres of land. He lives in Altona, aged eighty-
two years, respested and honored by all who
know him. His wife died January 11, 1892,
aged seventy-four years.

Gustav E. Fredericks was married in On-
tario Township, February 26, 1876, to Ida Ma-
tilda Walgreen, daughter of Nels P. and
Johanna vValgreen, who were prominent
among the farmers of that vicinity. The chil-
dren born to Mr. and Mrs. Fredericks were:
Mrs. Clara A. Swanson, Mollie C. O., Fanny C,
Jennie, Emma R., Minnie, Henrietta, Hilda C,
Clarence N.; Herbert A. and Carl E., both de-

Mr. Fredericks has been one of the most
progressive farmers in the county. He bought
the first self-binder, and the first traction en-
gine in Ontario Township. He is considered
one of the best threshers of grain in that part
of the country, having been engaged in the
business since he was fourteen years of age.
He has threshed the grain on some farms in
his neighborhood for twenty-seven years, and
has made a careful study of all kinds of farm
implements and machinery.

Politicaly, Mr. Fredericks is a republican,
and has been Road Commissioner twelve years.
In religious belief he is a Lutheran, and has
been a trustee of the Lutheran Church at Al-


James Hammond was born July 7, 1824, in
Medina County, Ohio. His father, Theodore
Hammond, was born near Hartford, Connecti-
cut, and his mother, Rebecca (Farnham) Ham-
mond, was also a native of Connecticut; her
grandfather was John Farnham. of the same
State; she died November 4, 1824. Mr. and
Mrs. Theodore Hammond moved to Summit
County, Ohio, in ISIO, and Mr. Hammond re-
moved to Illinois in 1844. The grandparents
of Mr. James Hammond were Jason Hammond,
of Bolton, Connecticut, and Rachel (Hale)
Hammond, of G-lastonburg. Connecticut.

Mr. James Hammond was reared on a farm,
and was educated in a log school house at
Hammond Corners. Bath, Ohio. At the age of
twenty years he came to Knox County, Illinois,
in the company of Royal Hammond, a cousin
of his father. He located in Ontario Township,
and herded sheep. In 1850, he bought one hun-
dred and sixty acres of land of Knox "College,
in Section 33, Ontario Township, and converted
the tract into a model farm on which he has
spent most of his time for the last half century.
He was married in Ontario Township, October
7. 1847, to Susan Porter Powell, daughter of
John and Maria (Wilson) Powell. Mrs. Ham-
mond was born near Utica, New York, and in
1836 came to Knox County with her uncle.
Charles F. Camp, a prominent and enterprising
citizen. She died March 16. 1897, aged seventy-
five years. She was an estimable woman, a
member of the Congregational Church, in On-
tario Township, which she helped to establish;
she was charitable, a good neighbor, and a lov-
ing, faithful wife and mother. The children

born to Mr. and Mrs. Hammond were: Park
Henry, deceased; Charles Camp, deceased; Ed-
win Powell, deceased; Ella M.; Fannie C; and
Ira E. Fannie C. graduated from Knox College
in June, 1881.

Mr. Hammond has been a hard worker, fre-
quently doing two days' work in one, and he
soon became an influential citizen. In 1867 he
built a most substantial dwelling of brick, with
double walls, selecting the wood for the inside,
oak, ash and curled walnut, from timber cut
on his own farm. Much of the furniture was
made to order, and the whole establishment is
the pride of the county as well as of the town-
ship. He has never speculated, but has been
uniformly successful in his operations, and he
attributes his good fortune to frugality and
hard work. He raised fine stock, and had one
of the first herds of Galloway cattle in the
county. He has been a prominent figure
among the farmers of Knox County for many
years. He was Supervisor several years and
has held different school offices. In politics he
is a republican, and in his church relations a

Mr. Hammond has traveled extensively in the
United States, and spent two and a half years
in Tehama County. California, where he owns
a fruit farm.


Hugh M. Mitchell was a native of Ohio, and
was born in Harrison County, May 25, 1820.
His father was John Mitchell, who lived in his
early years in Washington County, Pennsyl-
vania. He was a man of strong intellect and
was educated in the common schools of his
native State. At an early date, he went to
Ohio, and married Margaret McGee, a native
of Jefferson i^.ity, Ohio. Both parents were of
Irish descent, and after marriage settled in
Harrison County, when it was almost an un-
broken wilderness, here they lived long and
industrious lives, and at last, transformed the
wild land on which they had settled into a fine
farm. They raised a family of eleven children.
Mr. Mitchell was a soldier in the War of 1812.

Hugh M. Mitchell partook of some of the
marked characteristics of his father. He was
endowed with a good intellect and a sound
judgment. He was educated in the common
schools, showing the same perseverance there
as was exhibited m the business affairs of his
after life. He remained on the home farm
until he was twenty-four years of age, when he
married and settled on a forty-acre tract of
broken, hilly land. By his industry and
economy, he prospered, and saved a suffi-
cient amount of means to purchase a large
farm, on which he moved in 1847. To his farm-
ing, he added, in 1853, the business of keeping
a tavern for the accommodation of travelers,
which proved to be very lucrative. Here a
small village sprang up. and after the Post-
office was established, he was appointed Post-
master, holding the office for twelve years.

Mr. Mitchell was not pleased with this
double-headed business of keeping an inn and


ex !yUJ^ '^C^yi/XA. V^Vf-t'C^

K M O X C U U A' '1' ^ .

farming. He hid a great fondness for the
farm. So he resolved to engage wholly in that
occupation. He sold out and came to Knox
County in the Fall of 1864. He bought a farm
in Sparta Township, where he lived until 1871.
when he removed to Ontario Township. Here
he purchased a farm of about three hundred
acres, making his landed possessions in the
two townships of Sparta and Ontario about six
hundred acres. At the same time he owned a
nice residence in Oneida. Thus from small be-
ginnings, he became one of the wealthiest
farmers in Knox County.

Mr. Mitchell was no ordinary man. Endowed
with a good intellect and traineil in the habits
of industry and economy, he soon rose to a con-
dition of affluence. His business judgment was
unerring and his attention to duty never
flagged. Tne path of rectitude he saw before
him. and from it, he never turned aside. He
was just and generous, and lived a life that be-
comes a man. His religious faith was Presby-
terian. Both he and his wife were members
of that church. Politically, he was a Jeffer-
sonian democrat. He firmly believed in the
principles of that party.

Mr. Mitchell was married March 19, 1844, to
Nancy Nash. Her parents were farmers in
Pennsylvania, and when she was but a child,
removed to Harrison County, Ohio, where they
lived and died. They had a family of seven
children, consisting of two sons and five daugh-
ters. The wife of Hugh M. Mitchell, was a
most estimable woman and was born August 9,

To Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell, were born six
children, five so is and one daughter. Three
sons and the daughter are deceased. John R.
is a resident of Oneida. Illinois, and owns a
farm in Ontario Township; Samuel P. resides
on a farm north of Oneida: Hugh Parks was a
farmer in Gage County, Nebraska, for a num-
ber of years, but later was in the employ of
the Iowa Central Railroad Company: and J.
Calvin was the founder and editor of the
Keithburg Times. The greatest legacy that Mr.
Mitchell left his children was a good education.
They attended either Knox or Monmouth col-
lege. He died November 2. 1898.


John Raymond Mitchell, son of Hugh M. and
Nancy A. (Nash) Mitchell, was born August
13, 1847, in Harrison County, Ohio. The
Mitchell family were emigrants from the
North of Ireland, and of Scotch descent. Hugh
M. Mitchell was born in Harrison County. May
26, 1820. and was married, March 14, 1844, to
Nancy A. Nash, born in the same county, and
daughter of William and Hannah (Drummond)
Nash, of Pennsylvania. He came to Knox
County in the Fall of 1864. and located in
Sparta Township, a mile and a half east of
Wataga. He resided there from 1S64 to 1871.
and then moved to Section 23, Ontario Town-
ship, where he had a large farm. He after-
ward went to Oneida, where his death occurred
November 2, 1898, The paternal grandparents

of John R, Mitchell were John and Margaret
(.McKie) Mitchell, both born in Westmoreland
County, Pennsylvania. He was a soldier in the
War of 1812, and settled in Harrison County,
Ohio, when the country was a wilderness.

The education of John R. Mitchell was begun
in the common schools of Ohio, and completed
in Wataga, Illinois, to which State he came
with his father in the year 1864. He was
brought up a practical farmer, and owns a
very fine farm of three hundred and twenty
acres in Ontario Township. He was married
in Oneida March 23, 1876, to Anna Jennett
Muir, daughter of Thomas and Martha J. Fin-
ley (Heagyl Muir. They have four children,
Vlda May, Maurice Finley, Anna Myrtle and
Nannie Grace. Mr. Muir was born in Creeton,
Scotland, December 12, 1826, and emigrated
to Knox County. Illinois, in 1839 with his
mother and stepfather, Samuel McCornack.
The family settled first near Knoxville, where
they had a saw mill. Mr. Muir was a clerk in
the store of John Johnston, a well known mer-
chant of Knoxville. He was married October
24, 1853, lived in Nebraska City, Nebraska, a
year, and returned to Oneida, where, after an
active and useful life, he died, aged fifty-eight
years. He was an elder in the Presbyterian
Church at the age of twenty-five: a Sunday
school superintendent, and leader of the choir
many years. His children by his first mar-
riage were Anna Jennett and Thomas F. By a
second marriage, to Mrs. Sarah Hutchinson,
there were two children, Sarah Louisa and
Mary Ella.

In politics, Mr. Mitchell has been a repub-
lican since 1869, casting his first vote for Gen-
eral Grant, and is a firm believer in republican
principles. For many years he has been an
active member of the Presbyterian Church, and
has, for a number of years, taken especial in-
terest in educational matters in Oneida. At
Iiresent Mr. Mitchell rents his farm and quietly
enjoys the results of his previous labor.


William J. Mosher, son of S. Emerson and
Mary (Crane) Mosher. was born in Paris,
Oneida County, New York, August 9, 1841. His
paternal great-grandparents were John Mosher,
born in New London, Connecticut, and Eliza-
beth (Lawrence) Mosher, born in Groton,
Massachusetts, and on his mother's side, Henry
and Jerusha (Parmalee) Crane, born in
Durham, Connecticut. His grandparents were
Josiah Mosher, born in Pepperel, Massachu-
setts, and Rebecca (Doolittle) Mosher, born in
New London, Connecticut, and on the mother's
side, Henry and Octavia (Hungerford) Crane,
the former born in Durham, Connecticut, the
latter in Litchfield, New York, His parents,
S. Emerson and Mary (Crane) Mosher, were
born in Oneida County, New York. They were
married in Paris, Oneida County, where they
resided till 18.51. He was a carpenter, and was
also interested in a saw mill and grist mill.
He was a school teacher twenty years, a cap-
tain in the militia, and was always known as



"Captain S. E. Mosher." He was a man greatly
respected for nis integrity. His father, Josiah,
was a soldier in the Revolutionary War. and
served in his brother John Mosher's company.
Captain S. E. Mosher removed to Illinois, the
family arriving in Galesburg, May 6, 1851,
where many of the pioneers were known to
them. They soon settled in Ontario Township,
locating on Section 32. and brought under cul-
tivation the far!Q now owned by William J.

Online LibraryNewton BatemanHistorical encyclopedia of Illinois → online text (page 169 of 207)