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Historical encyclopedia of Illinois online

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ment of the latter in 1808. He then began prac-
tice at Butler. Bates County, 5Io. , wliere he
served three years as City Attorney, but, in 1873,
returned to Illinois, locating in Hyde Park (now
a part of Chicago), where he served as City
Attorney for three consecutive terms before its
annexation to Chicago. In 1880, he was elected
as a Republican to the State Senate for the
Second Senatorial District, serving in the Thirty-
second and the Thirty-third General As.sembliffs.
In 1892, he was the Republican nominee for Judge
of the Superior Court of Cook County, but was
defeated with the National and the State tickets
of that year, since when he has given his atten-
tion to regular practice, maintaining a high rank
in his profession.

COXGER, Edwin Kurd, lawyer and diploma-
tist, was bom in Knox County, 111., March?, 1843;
graduated at Lombard Universit)', Galesburg. in
1862. and inmiediately thereafter enlisted as a

private in the One Hundred and Second Illinois
Volunteers, serving tlirough the war and attain-
ing the rank of Captain, besides being brevetted
Major for gallant service. Later, he graduateil
from the Albany Law School and practiced for a
time in Galesburg, but, in 1868, removed to Iowa,
where he engaged in farming, stock-raising and
hanking; was twice elected County Treasurer f)f
Dallas County, and, in 1880, State Treasure)',
being re-elected in 1882; in 1886, was elected ti)
Congi-ess from the Des Moines District, and twice
re-elected (1888 and '90), but before the close of
his last term was appointed by President Harri-
son Minister to Brazil, serving until 1893. In
1896, he served as Presidential Elector for the
State-at-large, and, in 1897, was re-appointetl
Minister to Brazil, but, in 1898, was transferred
to China, where (1899) he now is. He was suc-
ceeded at Rio Janeiro by Charles Page Bryan of

gational ministers — Rev. S. J. Mills and Rev.
Daniel Smith — visited Illinois in 1814, and spent
some time at Kaskaskia and Shawneetown, but
left for New Orleans without organizing anj'
dmrches. The first church was organized at
Mendon, Adams County, in 1833. followed by
others during the same year, at Naperville, Jack-
sonville and Quincy. By 1830, tlie number had
increased to ten. Among the pioneer ministers
were Jabez Porter, who was also a teacher at
Quincy, in 1828, and Rev. Asa Turner, in 1830,
who became pastor of the first Quincy churcli,
followed later by Revs. Julian M. Sturtevant
(afterwards President of Illinois College). Tru-
man M. Post, Edward Beecher and Horatio Foot.
Other Congregational ministers who came to f'e
State at an early day were Rev. Salmon Gridley.
who finally located at St. Louis; Rev. John M.
Ellis, who served as a missionary and was instru-
mental in founding Illinois College and the Jack-
sonville Female Seminary at Jacksonville; Revs.
Thomas Lippincott. Cyrus L. Watson, Theron
Baldwin, Elisha Jenney, William Kirby. the two
Lovejoys (Owen and Elijah P.), and many more
of whom, either temporarily or permanently,
became associated with Presbyterian churches.
Although Illinois College was under the united
patronage of Presbyterians and Congregational
ists. tlie leading spirits in its original establish
ment were Congregationalists, and the same was
true of Knox College at Galesburg. In 1835, at
Big Grove, in an unoccupied log-cabin, was
convened the first Congregational Council, known
in the denominational history of tlie State as



that of Fox River. Since then some twelve to
fifteen .separate Associations have been organized.
By 1890, the development of the denomination
had been such tliat it had 280 churches, support-
ing 312 ministers, with 33, 126 members. During
that year the disbursements on acooimt of chari-
ties and home extension, by tlie Illinois churches,
were nearly SI , 000, 000. The Chicago Theological
Seminary, at Cliicago, is a Congregational school
of divinity, its property holdings being worth
nearly .?700,000. "The Advance" (published at
Chicago) is the chief denominational organ.
(See also Religious Denominations. )

Apportionment, Congressional; also Represent-
atives in Congress. )

CONKLIXG, James Cook, lawyer, wa? born in
New York City, Oct. 13, 1816 ; graduated at Prince-
ton College in 1835, and, after studying law and
being admitted to the bar at Morristown, N. J,, in
1838, removed to Springfield, 111. Here his first
business partner was Cyrus Walker, an eminent
and widely known lawj'er of his time, while at a
later period he was associated with Gen. James
Shields, afterwards a soldier of the Mexican War
and a United States Senator, at different times,
from three different States. As an original
Whig, Mr. Conkling early became associated
with Abraham Lincoln, whose intimate and
trusted friend he was through life. It was to
him that Mr. Lincoln addressed his celebrated
letter, which, by his special request, Mr. Conk-
ling read before the great Union mass-meeting at
Springfield, held, Sept. 3, 1863, now known as the
"Lincoln-Conkling Letter." Mr. Conkling was
chosen Mayor of the city of Springfield in 1844,
and served in the lower branch of the Seven-
teenth and the Twenty-fifth General Assemblies
(1851 and 1867). It was largely due to his tactful
management in the latter, that the first appropri-
ation was made for the new State House, which
established the capital permanently in that city.
At the Bloomington Convention of 1856, where
the Republican party in Illinois may be said to
have been formally organized, with Mr. Lincoln
and three others, he represented Sangamon
County, served on the Committee on Resolutions,
and was appointed a member of the State Central
Committee which conducted tlie campaign of
that year. In 1860, and again in 1864, his name
was on the Republican State ticket for Presiden-
tial Elector, and, on both occasions, it became his
duty to cast the electoral vote of Mr. Lincoln's
own District for him for President. The intimacy
of personal friendship existing between him and

Mr. Lincoln was fittingly illustrated by his posi-
tion for over thirty years as an original member
of the Lincoln Monument Association. Other
public positions held by him included those of
State Agent during the Civil War by appointment
of Governor Yates. Trustee of the State University
at Champaign, and of Blackburn University at
Carlinville, as also that of Postmaster of the city
of Springfield, to which he was appointed in 1890,
continuing in office four years. High-minded
and honorable, of pure personal character and
strong religious convictions, public-spirited and
liberal, probably no man did more to promote
the gro^vth and prosperity of the city of Spring-
field, during the sixty years of his residence there,
than he. His death, as a result of old age,
occurred in that city, March 1, 1899. —Clinton L.
(Conkling), son of the preceding, was born in
Springfield, Oct. 16, 1843; graduated at Yale
College in 1864, studied law with his father, and
was licensed to practice in tlie Illinois courts in
1866, and in the United States courts in 1867.
After practicing a few years, he turned his atten
tion to manufacturing, but, in 1877, resumed
practice and has proved successful. He has
devoted much attention of late years to real
estate business, and has represented large land
interests in this and other States. For many
years he was Secretary of the Lincoln Monument
Association, and has served on the Board of
County Supervisors, which is the only political
office he has held. In 1897 he was the Repub-
lican nominee for Judge of the Springfield Cir-
cuit, but, although confessedly a man of the
highest probity and ability, was defeated in a
district overwhelmingly Democratic.

CONNOLLY, James Austin, lawyer and Con
gressman, was born in Newark, N. J., March 8.
1843; went with his parents to Ohio in 1850,
where, in 1858-59, he served as Assistant Clerk of
the State Senate ; studied law and was admitted
to the bar in that State in 1861, and soon after
removed to Illinois; the following year (1862) he
enlisted as a private soldier in the One Hundred
and Twenty-third Illinois Volunteers, but was
successively commissioned as Captain and Major,
retiring with the rank of brevet Lieutenant-
Colonel. In 1872 lie was elected Representative
in the State Legislature from Coles County and
re-elected in 1874; was United States District
Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois
from 1876 to 1885, and again from 1889 to 1893;
in 1886 was appointed and confirmed Solicitor of
the Treasury, but declined the office; the same
year ran as the Republican camlidate for Con-


gress in the Springfield (then the Thirteenth)
District in opposition to Wni. M. Springer, anJ
was defeated by less than 1,000 votes in a district
usually Democratic by 3,000 majority. He
declined a second nomination in 1888, but, in 1894,
was nominated for a third time (this time for the
Seventeenth District), and was elected, as he was
for a second term in 1896. He declined a renomina-
tion in 1898, returning to the practice of his pro-
fession at Springfield at the close of the Fifty-fifth

CONSTABLE, Charles H., lawyer, was born at
Chestertown, Md.,July 6, 1817; educated at Belle
Air Academy and the University of Virginia,
graduating from the latter in 1838. Then, having
studied law, he was admitted to the bar, came to
Illinois early in 1840, locating at Mount Carmel,
Wabash County, and, in 1844, was elected to the
State Senate for the district composed of Wabash,
Edwards and Wayne Counties, serving until 1848.
He also served as a Delegate in the Constitutional
Convention of 1847. Originally a Whig, on the
dissolution of that party in 18.54, he became a
Democrat; in 18.56, served as Presidential
Elector-at-large on the Buchanan ticket and,
during the Civil War, was a pronounced oppo-
nent of the policy of the Government in dealing
with secession. Having removed to Marshall,
Clark County, in 1852, he continued the practice
of his profession there, but was elected Judge of
the Circuit Court in 1861, serving until his death,
which occurred, Oct. 9, 1865. While holding
court at Charleston, in March. 1863, Judge Con-
stable was arrested because of his release of four
deserters from the army, and the holding to bail,
on the charge of kidnaping, of two Union officers
who had arrested them. He was subsequently
released by Judge Treat of the United States
District Court at Springfield, but the affair cul-
minated in a riot at Charleston, on March 22, in
which four soldiers and three citizens were killed
outright, and eight persons were wounded.

has had four State Conventions called for the
pvtrpose of formulating State Constitutions. Of
these, three— those of 1818, 1847 and 1869-70—
adopted Constitutions which went into effect,
while the instrument framed by the Convention
of 1862 was rejected by the people. A synoptical
history of each will be found below:

Convention of 1818.— In January, 1818, the
Territorial Legislature adopted a resolution
instructing the Delegate in Congress (Hon.
Nathaniel Pope) to present a petition to Congress
requesting the passage of an act authorizing the

people of Illinois Territory to organize a State
(fovernment. A bill to this effect was intro-
duced, April 7, and became a law, April 18, follow-
ing. It authorized the people to frame a
Constitution and organize a State Government-
apportioning the Delegates to be elected from
each of the fifteen counties into which the Ter-
ritory was then divided, naming the first Monday
of July, following, as the day of election, and the
first Monday of August as the time for the meet-
ing of the Convention. The act was conditioned
upon a census of tlie people of the Territory (to
be ordered by the Legislature), sliowing a popu-
lation of not less than 40.000. The census, as
taken, showed the required population, but, as
finally corrected, this was reduced to 34,620 —
being the smallest with which any State vcas ever
admitted into the Union. The election took
place on July 6, 1818, and the Convention assem-
bled at Kaskaskia on Augdst 3. It consisted of
tliirty-three members. Of these, a majority were
farmers of limited education, but with a fair
portion of hai-d common-sense. Five of the
Delegates were lawyers, and these undoubted!)-
wielded a controlling influence. Jesse B.
Thomas (afterwards one of the first United
States Senators) presided, and Elias Kent Kane,
also a later Senator, was among the dominating
spirits. It has been asserted that to the latter
should be ascribed whatever new matter was
incorporated in the instrument, it being copied
in most of its essential provisions from the Con-
stitutions of Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. The
Convention completed its labors and adjourned,
August 26, the Constitution was submitted to
Congress by Delegate John McLean, without the
formality of ratification by the people, and Illi-
nois was admitted into the Union as a State by
resolution of Congress, adopted Dec. 3, 1818.

Convention of 1847.— An attempt was made in
1832 to obtain a revision of the Constitution of
1818, the object of the chief promoters of the
movement being to .secure the incorporation of a
provision authorizing tlie admission of slavery
into Illinois. The passage of a resolution, by the
necessary two-thirds vote of both Houses of the
General Assembly, submitting the proposition to
a vote of the people, was secured by the most
questionable methods, at the session of 1822, but
after a heated campaign of nearly two years, it
was rejecte

Online LibraryNewton BatemanHistorical encyclopedia of Illinois → online text (page 24 of 207)