George Washington Smith.

A history of southern Illinois : a narrative account of its historical progress, its people, and its principal interests (Volume v.3) online

. (page 71 of 98)
Online LibraryGeorge Washington SmithA history of southern Illinois : a narrative account of its historical progress, its people, and its principal interests (Volume v.3) → online text (page 71 of 98)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

dren, Elvira, Hazel and Pleasant; Mrs. Nora Taylor, who has three
children, Vivy, Louisa and Charles ; Cora Pennina ; Mrs. Delia Lean-
nah Taylor; and Fred, who married Miss Jobe and has three children,
Philip, John and Gerrel. The family is connected with the Cumber-
land Presbyterian church, and Mr. Harper has been a liberal supporter
of religious and charitable movements.

HENRY BAILEY is the president of the Little Muddy Fuel Company,
a corporation operating mines at Sunfield and Tamaroa, Illinois, and has
all his life been connected with the mining industry in one capacity or
another. He was born in Perry county, on March 23, 1879. Coal mining
no doubt came to him quite naturally, as in addition to being reared in a
community where that was the principal industry, he is the son of
Joseph Bailey, himself a practical coal miner of Monmouthshire, Eng-
land, who was born there in 1834 and came to the United States as a
young man. On arriving in America he first stopped in the fuel region
of Youngstown, Ohio, where he remained for a time and then continued
on until he came to Illinois. He settled in the vicinity of DuQuoin and
died at Sunfield, in 1883. He was married in 1863, in Youngstown, Ohio
to Rachel Owens, and in 1911 Mrs. Bailey passed away at Marissa,
Illinois. The issue of their union were : John, who lost his life in the
mines at Sunfield in 1889 ; Joe, an officer of the Little Muddy Fuel
Company, and who married Lizzie O'Keefe; Robert, a Sunfield miner
and is married to Delia Cytrall; William married Belle Payne and


is identified with the Sunfield mine of the company ; George, one of the
brothers who comprise the firm, resides at Sunfield, and is married to
Mary Terry ; Henry ; Charles, who grew up in and about the mines
owned and operated by members of his family and who is now identified
with the company, is the husband of Minnie Bishop ; Mary, the widow of
James Lockhart, is a resident of Sunfield.

Henry Bailey and his brothers were educated in the common schools
and he began his career as a miner at Sunfield with one of the local
companies. He began with the simplest manual labor and steadily ad-
vanced until he held the position of chief to the commissary of the com-
pany. In 1900 he and his brothers came into the possession of the prop-
erty by lease, and operated the mines at Sunfield as the Bailey Brothers
Coal Company, he being chosen as chief officer of the company. The lease
covers three mines in this section, and they have a heavy interest in the
Pond Creek Coal Company at Herrin, Illinois, of which company he
and his brother Joe are directors, the latter being secretary of the com-
pany as well. The Sunfield and Tamaroa properties have united capacity
of something like fifteen hundred tons output daily, and employ a
working force of three hundred men.

The marriage of Henry Bailey took place at DuQuoin on December
23, 1900, his wife being Lizzie, the daughter of B. A. Terry, a miner of
English birth. Mrs. Bailey was born in Perry county on May 1, 1882,
and she and her husband are the parents of three children, Harley R.,
Hazel and Ray.

Mr. Bailey is a Republican, as are the other members of his family
who are voters, and he is a Master Mason and a Pythian Knight.

HON. ROBERT S. JONES. The true American spirit of progress and
enterprise, as exemplified in the career of Hon. Robert S. Jones, of
Flora, gives him prestige among the representative citizens of Southern
Illinois, and his career is a case in point that proves one of the reasons
for the country's greatness the fact that all men are equal before the
law and that all have an even opportunity in the struggle for advance-
ment. He is essentially a self-made man, and his energetic nature and
laudable ambition have enabled him to conquer many adverse circum-
stances, while he has so ordered his life as to gain and hold the esteem and
confidence of his fellow men. Mr. Jones was born at Xenia, Clay county,
Illinois, June 20, 1871, and is a son of Robert H. and Emily E. (Ham-
mer) Jones.

Robert Jones, the paternal grandfather of Robert S., was a native of
Virginia, from which state he moved to Kentucky, thence to Illinois in
1839. He was a blacksmith by occupation, participated in both the
Black Hawk and Civil wars, attained advanced years, and died in Clay
county, respected and esteemed by all who knew him. On the maternal
side Mr. Jones' grandfather was Frederick Hammer, a native of Ger-
many, who came to the United States in young manhood and spent the
remainder of his life in Jasper county, Illinois, where he was the builder
of the first mill in the county. Dr. Robert H. Jones, father of Robert S.,
was born in Warren county, Kentucky, in 1829, and when ten years of
age was brought to Illinois. Reared in Randolph county and educated
to the profession of physician, he was engaged in practice for thirty
years and attained eminence in his calling. During the entire Civil war
he served with distinction on Grant's staff in the Twenty-first Illinois
Volunteers, holding the rank of quartermaster-sergeant. On his return
from the war he again engaged in practice, and from 1897 to 1900 was
surgeon of the Soldiers and Sailors Home at Quincy. Being stricken with
paralysis, he was for the last eleven years of his life an invalid, and his


death occurred in 1909. Dr. Jones was a well known figure in Republi-
can politics and in 1872 was chairman of the county committee. His wife
was born in Marion county, Indiana, and came to Illinois with her par-
ents, and she survives her husband and resides at Lebanon, Illinois.

Robert S. Jones obtained his education in the common schools of
Flora, supplemented by attendance, at Fairfield, Illinois, in Hayward
College, and he subsequently studied both law and medicine, but never
took up either profession. During the early years of his business career
he followed commercial traveling, but after spending about fifteen years
on the road established himself in the real estate business in Flora, with
Colonel Randolph Smith. Although he had started life with little beside
ambition and a determination to win success, he had the native ability and
enterprising spirit that goes to make the leaders in any field, and his
operations have been of such an extensive nature to entitle him to a place
among the prominent business men of his section. Mr. Jones is an expert
on realty values, and although the firm does a small commission busi-
ness the greater part of their operations are carried on with their own
property, and at times they own vast tracts of valuable lands. Mr. Jones
is a man of the highest honor and integrity in all the relations of life, and
commands the confidence and esteem of the entire community, where the
family enjoy a distinctive popularity. He is progressive in his methods,
is public-spirited in his attitude, and is known as a man of wide informa-
tion and sound judgment. He and his family are connected with the
Christian church, and fraternally he is connected with the Masons, the
Odd Fellows and the Modern Woodmen of America. A stanch and stal-
wart Republican in a district strongly Democratic, Mr. Jones in 1908 was
a candidate for a state senatorship, but owing to political conditions
met with defeat, although he ran ahead of his ticket about 2,000 votes.
In 1910, however, he was nominated and elected to the legislature of the
state, and he is chairman of the committee on horticulture and a member
of the following committees: Appropriation, corporation, fraternal and
mutual insurance, judicial apportionment, mines and mining, penal and
reform institutions, retrenchment, temperance and to visit state institu-
tions. A strong and able speaker, Mr. Jones has been fearless in his sup-
port of those measures which he has deemed important to the welfare of
his constituents, and he is esteemed by his fellow-legislators as an active
and energetic member. All progressive movements in his home city have
his earnest and hearty support, and he has just been elected secretary of
the newly organized Fair Association. He is a stock-holder and director
in the First National Bank of Flora, and contributes in various ways to
the development of his community 's industrial, commercial and civic re-

In 1907 Representative Jones was united in marriage with Miss Delia
Naney, daughter of Newton Naney. for more than thirty years a passen-
ger conductor on the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, and two children have
been born to this union : Leslie and Pauline, both attending school.


EDGAR E. FYKE. One of the most prominent men in Centralia, Illi-
nois, both in the business and in the professional fields, is Doctor Edgar
E. Fyke. He started in life a poor boy, but he had his father's fondness
for books, and he was full of ambition, so making up his mind that if
energy and perseverance could win for him his goal he would make a suc-
cess in the same profession that his father had chosen. Success has come
to him not only as a physician but as a business man. He has now re-
tired from active medical practice, but he is still a prominent figure in
the business world. He is a large stock-holder and is general manager of
one of the most important commercial enterprises in and around Cen-


tralia. The tact and patience which he learned as a physician have
served him well in this position, where one of his biggest problems is the
management of men. He has built up a good sized private fortune, but
he has been too close to the suffering of the world to profit at the expense
of others, consequently his money does not bear the taint of having been
wrung from weak and toil worn fingers, but has been made by honest and
upright business methods. Dr. Fyke, having spent so many years in the
service of others, has never lost the habit of thinking much of and for
others, and this generosity and big heartedness has won him the regard
and affection of the people of Centralia.

Edgar E. Fyke was born in Odin, Illinois, on the 23rd of December,
1868. He was the son of John J. Fyke and Minerva T. (Phillips) Fyke.
His father, John J. Fyke, was born in 1842, at Tennessee Prairie, Marion
county, Illinois. He is the son of Josiah A. and Margaret (Wilson) Fyke.
The former was born in Tennessee and came to Marion county about
1840. He took up government land and settled down to the life of a
farmer. His wife was the first white child born in Marion county, the
date of her birth being 1822. Her family, the Wilsons came to Marion
county about 1818, being pioneers from North Carolina. They took up
government land and, being industrious and able people, developed the
land into great and prosperous farms. Josiah Fyke and his wife raised a
large family of children. He spent all of his life as a farmer, and died
in 1878.

John J. Fyke is a self made man. His father was too busy to sympa-
thize with his ambitions, and although he gave him what aid he could in
obtaining his education, yet he had a large family and a small income,
and there was little to spare for the education of his young son. Conse-
quently John Fyke learned the true value of an education in working for
it. He attended McKendree College at Lebanon, Illinois, for a time, and
then he began the study of medicine with Doctor Davenport, of Salem,
Illinois. After accomplishing considerable work under the tutelage of
the older man, he entered a medical college in Chicago, and after spend-
ing some time there he went to St. Louis, where he matriculated at a
similar institution. He won fame as a scholar, ranking among the first
in his class in both the St. Louis and the Chicago schools. He began to
practice in 1866, and since that time he has been in almost constant ser-
vice. He is still practicing in Odin, Illinois, and what the people of this
town would do without this old friend and adviser would be hard to say.
He is a Mason and has served in all the chairs of his chapter. In his
religious affiliations he is a devout member of the Methodist Episcopal
church. Doctor Fyk'e married Miss Minerva Phillips, a daughter of
Thomas and Eliza (Chadwell) Phillips. Thomas Phillips and his wife
were both natives of Tennessee, and had come to Illinois in about 1855.
Here they settled down as farmers and save for the years during which
Thomas Phillips served in, the army during the Black Hawk war he
spent his life as a farmer.

Edgar E. Fyke received his elementary education in Odin, Illinois,
and when he was ready to take up his professional studies his father sent
him to the city where he had spent a large part of his school days, St.
Louis. Missouri. Here he entered the College of Physicians and Sur-
geons, from which he was graduated in 1889. He then returned to
Odin, where he went into practice with his father. This was a wise move
on his part, for in addition to the advice that the older man could give
him from his wider professional experience, the influence of the strong
and upright character of his father was a steadying influence on the
young man just starting out, eager with enthusiasm. He spent five years
in association with his father and then came to Centralia, where he spent


fifteen years in practice. During this time he has not allowed the ad-
vance made in his profession to slip by him, but has endeavored to keep
abreast of the times, not only by reading and studying the modern medi-
cal literature, but by taking post-graduate courses. During the year of
1900 and 1901 he was in New York City doing post graduate work, and
his patients have greatly benefited by this work of his.

He is no longer an active practitioner, but he still evinces great in-
terest in medicine and in the related sciences. At present most of his
time is given to his duties as manager of the Marion County Coal Com-
pany, which owns one of the most valuable mines in the state of Illinois.
He himself owns a large block of this stock, and is also the owner of other
large properties. He has a half interest in the Red Cross Drug Store,
which is a very profitable business. In his political views Doctor Fyke
is a Democrat, and while he has never held office he is always an enthusi-
astic worker in behalf of the party. Like his father, he is a prominent
Mason, and has passed through all the chairs of the Chapter, being in
addition a Knight Templar. He is, in short, one of the best known and
most popular men in Centralia. A man whose opinions are listened to,
and whose views are respected.

In 1896, Doctor Fyke was married to Helen Morrison, the daughter of
N. B. Morrison, of Odin. He was an early settler of Odin, and had man-
aged to amass considerable property by the time he was ready to retire
from the business world. He died quite recently, at the age of eighty-
seven. Three children have been born to Doctor and Mrs. Fyke, Jean,
who is in the high school, and Helen and Lavinia, who are also both in

JUDGE JOHN S. STONECIPHER. Starting on practically nothing, with
the determination to secure in some way first an education and then suc-
cess in his profession. Judge John S. Stonecipher, by means of hard work
and the firm resolution to let nothing hinder his progress forward, is now
one of the most successful lawyers in Marion county and his reputation
for honesty and the ability to win his cases has given him the largest
practice of any lawyer in Salem. The fine judicial qualities of his mind,
his keen sense of justice and his vast store of legal lore so won the confi-
dence of his fellow citizens that he was elected county judge. His suc-
cess as a lawyer has its parallel in his career as a banker and financier.

John S. Stonecipher was born m July, 1868, the son of Samuel and
Mary (Ross) Stonecipher. His father was a well known and popular
farmer of Marion county, but was not a native of this county, having
been born in Knox county, Tennessee, in 1814. In 1834 he and his wife
came to Illinois and settled in Marion county, on land which is still the
property of Judge Stonecipher. Here he spent the remainder of his life,
living past the century mark. He was an ardent Democrat, and a
staunch member of the Missionary Baptist^ church. His parents were
both natives of Tennessee, where they lived and died. Mr. Stonecipher
was a remarkable man, with a fine mind and great nobility of charac-
ter. His loss was keenly felt throughout the whole county, and the inter-
est and pride which the section takes in the achievements of his son is
in some measure due to their regard for his father.

The county schools gave Judge Stonecipher his first taste of the fruits
of learning, then he entered Ewing College, where he spent two years.
The next two years he studied at Carbondale and then went to Valpa-
raiso, where he took his degree in law in 1890. Back to his home town
he went, equipped for the practice of law, but without a cent in his poc-
kets to buy the fittings necessary for an office. How this was to be earned
was the next question. It was a stiff problem, and it had a rather unusual


solution. The post of deputy sheriff becoming vacant he stepped into it,
and served in this capacity for two years. In this way he got consid-
erable inside knowledge of the practical workings of the courts of justice,
at the same time being able to earn a little money. At the end of the two
years L. M. Kazy took him into his office, and here it was that he began to
build up the practice that eclipsed that of any man in Salem. Some
time after this he hung out his shingle and went into active practice
for himself. His success was phenomenal, his clear and forceful man-
ner of speaking, the ease with which he was able to see the flaws and
weak spots in his opponent's arguments, the lightning speed with which
he attacked these, all made him a lawyer to be depended upon. In
1906 his ability was recognized in his election to the office of county
judge, in which position he served for one term.

Much of his time during his latter years has been occupied in his
business as a banker. In 1911, on the 24th of July, he started the Citi-
zens Bank, a private institution owned and controlled by himself. The
experience that made him attempt such an enterprise he had obtained
some years previously in the very active part which he took in the
organization of the Salem State Bank, of which he was vice-president
until he established the Citizens Bank, when he resigned. He yet holds
the largest block of stock in the Salem State Bank and his word has
great weight in the policy which they adopt. At one time he was
trustee of the Sandoval Coal Company and is at present owner of a one-
fourth interest in the mines.

Politically he has always been an active worker in the Democratic
ranks, and has helped to win many battles for them. Both he and his
wife are members and attendants of the Methodist Episcopal church
in Salem, and fraternally he is a member of the Odd Fellows, the
Knights of Pythias and the Woodmen of the "World.

In 1904 Judge Stonecipher married Amy Bachmann, a daughter
of Adam Bachmann, who was born in Germany. He came to the
United States quite early in life, and started out to earn a living with
absolutely no money. He is now the wealthiest man in Marion county,
and is president of the Salem National Bank. Judge and Mrs. Stone-
cipher have two children, Frank G., who is in school, and a little girl,
Maude L.

The career of Judge Stonecipher speaks for itself. Such success as
his could not come from anything save a power within himself, the in-
stinct to fight against all odds and to meet defeat with the steady de-
termination to conquer next time. Although his legal practice brought
him in money, yet he threw himself with as much enthusiasm into a case
which meant little or nothing in a pecuniary way as into one that in-
volved large sums. His clients were always inspired with hope, by his
calm belief in the fortunate outcome of their cases, a faith that was
rarely disappointed. Faith in him and in his integrity having taken
so firm a hold on the minds of the people it is no wonder that the bank
which he started is rapidly becoming one of the most powerful institu-
tions of its kind in the county, or that he occupies one of the highest
places in the respect of the community.

WILLIAM H. THRASH, sheriff of Clay county since 1910 and one of
the prominent farmers of his section of the state, is a native of Clay
county. He was born on the farm of his father on June 10, 1861, and he
is now the owner and operator of that farm, which came to him upon
the demise of his honored parent. The farm is one of the most up-to-
date and well kept in the county, and is a matter of much pride to its
owner, as well it may be.


Mr. Thrash is the son of Larkin and Sarah (Humes) Thrash. Lar-
kin Thrash was born in White county, Illinois, in 1818, and passed his
life in pursuit of the farming industry. He settled in Clay county in
early life and on the government land which he filed on when he came
here he worked and prospered and finally died, his death occurring in
November, 1911. He was always a hard-working man and his success
was in proportion to the efforts he expended on his place, in later years
being prominently known as a farmer and stock-raiser of much ability
and prosperity. He was a Democrat all his life, and all his political
labors were in behalf of that party. He was the son of Thomas Thrash,
a native of Virginia, who settled in White county, Illinois, where Lar-
kin Thrash was born, and there spent the remainder of his life. The
maternal grandfather of William H. Thrash was John Humes, born
in Ohio, but later moving into Indiana, where he eventually passed
away. He also was a farmer.

Mr. Thrash, of this review, was educated in the common schools of
Clay county, being permitted advantages such as were common to the
country youth of his period. He remained on his father's farm and as-
sisted with the conduct of the flourishing business of which his father
was the head. He has made his residence at the farm, which eventually
came into his ownership on the death of his father ;n November, 1911,
until a short time ago when he moved into Louisville, that he might
more conveniently discharge the duties of his office as sheriff of Clay
county, to which office he was elected in 1910, on the Democratic ticket
in a Republican county, a fact which is most eloquent of the high stand-
ing and general popularity of the man in his county.

In 1883 Mr. Thrash married Miss Belle Rusher, a daughter of Moss
Rusher, a settler in Illinois in the early days of her statehood. He was
a veteran of the Civil war and was a useful citizen of Louisville for
many years, where he plied his trade as a harness maker with a high
degree of success up to the time of his death, in 1904. Mr. and Mrs.
Thrash are the parents of seven children: Flossie, Charles W., Nellie.,
Clarence, Arta, Ruth and Esti.

Mr. Thrash is a member of the Odd Fellows and the Red Men, and
in his political affiliations has always been a sturdy Democrat, and has
been a leader in Democratic politics in Clay county for years.

JUDGE CICERO J. LINDLY, who is now engaged in the general practice
of law at Greenville, the judicial center of Bond county, has been a resi-
dent of Southern Illinois from the time of his nativity and is a scion of
one of the prominent and honored pioneer families of this section of the
state, with the development of whose resources the name has been closely
identified. Judge Lindly has been a power in connection with political
affairs in Southern Illinois, has served as a member of the state legisla-
ture and as county judge, as well as railway and warehouse commis-
sioner, and was at one time a prominent candidate for Congress. He
has gained secure prestige in his chosen profession and is one of the
representative members of the bar of Bond county, where he controls a
large and substantial practice and where he commands unequivocal
popular esteem.

Cicero J. Lindly was born on a farm near St. Jacob, Madison county,
Illinois, on the llth of December, 1857, and is a son of John J. and
Mary A. (Palmer) Lindly. That the Lindly family was founded in
Southern Illinois in the early pioneer epoch of the state's history is
evident when it is stated that John J. Lindly likewise was born in Madi-
son county and that the date of his nativity was 1831. There he was
reared and educated and virtually his entire active career was devoted

Online LibraryGeorge Washington SmithA history of southern Illinois : a narrative account of its historical progress, its people, and its principal interests (Volume v.3) → online text (page 71 of 98)