pub Chas. C. Chapman & Co..

History of Tazewell county, Illinois ; together with sketches of its cities, villages and townships, educational, religious, civil, military, and political history; portraits of prominent persons and biographies of representative citizens. History of Illinois ... Digest of state laws online

. (page 51 of 79)
Online Librarypub Chas. C. Chapman & Co.History of Tazewell county, Illinois ; together with sketches of its cities, villages and townships, educational, religious, civil, military, and political history; portraits of prominent persons and biographies of representative citizens. History of Illinois ... Digest of state laws → online text (page 51 of 79)
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Solomon and Sarah Glotfelter. The former was born in Lancaster
Co., Pa., and is living at a ripe old age in Green county, O. His
mother was born in the Buckeye State. Mr. G. had only a com-
mon school education, and came to this county in 1850 and eiigaged
in farming. He now manufactures tile and, fortunately, has a
superior quality of clay to work, and he has constructed excellent
facilities for making the very best of tile. Oct. 9, 1849, he was
joined in marriage with Sarah Robinson. She died in October,
1872, and he married again in 1874, to Margaret Barnes. He is
the parent of eight children — five boys and three girls — six of
Avhom are living. Religiously he is a Methodist ; politically, a
Republican. P. O., Minier.

Isaac Y. Gray, farmer, section 2, came to Illinois in 1858 and to
Tazewell Co. in 1870. He was born in Georgetown, Harrison Co.,
Ohio, Dec. 3, 1832. His parents were A^illiam H. ^nd Susanna
Gray, the former from Virginia, the latter from Ohio. j\[r. Gray
attended only the common schools to obtain his education. On the
24th of Feb., 1856, he was united in marriage with Sarah A. Turner,
daughter of Harvey Turner, of Logan Co. She died July 24, 1867,
and he was again married, May 1, 1870, to Susan L. Briggs, daugh-
ter of John S. Briggs. He is the parent of two children, only one
of whom, a girl, is now living. Mr. G. is a member of the Chris- .
tian Church ; politically a Republican ; post-office, Minier.

James L. Gunncll, dentist, Minier; was born in Christian county,
Ky., Feb. 16, 1832, and was brought to this county in the sj)ring of
1834. His father Avas a native of Virginia, his mother of North
Carolina. He received his education in the common schools and at
Eureka College, Eureka, 111., and has chosen the dental profession.
He enlisted in Co. D, 94t]i 111. Inf. during the trving days of the
Rebellion and served till INIarch 16, 1863. Ont^he 14thof May,
1878, he was married to Kate M. Myers. Orville J. was born to
them March 3, 1879. Mr. G. is a member of the Christian Church.

James W. Herndon, farmer, was born in Christian county, Ky.,
Oct. 5, 1823, and was brought^ to Tazewell county when a lad of
only seven summers, and is therefore one of the " old settlers." His
parents were Benjamin and Nancy Herndon, of Virginia. Mr. H.
has served his township as Constable and Collector. He was joined
in the holy bands of matrimony with Frances Wilson, on the 24th
of July, 1850. They are the parents of six children — three boys
and three girls — five of whom are living. He casts his influence
and ballot on the Democratic side of politics. P. O., ^linier.

Elwood Hicks, farmer; P. O., Minier; came to this county in the
fall of 1837. In 1859 he went to California with a drove of cattle,


and returned in Dec, 1862. He is the son of Asa and Annie Hicks,
of Georgia, and was born in Belmont county, Ohio, Feb. 3, 1833.
He came to the county when a child, grew up, attended the conmion
schools, and settled down here and is rearing a family. He has
served as School Director for seven years. March 5, 1863, was the
day upon which he married Eliza A. Shumaker, who has borne him
six children — four boys and two girls — five of whom are living.
Religiously he was raised a Quaker ; politically he is a Republican.

Francis 0. Kilby came to Tazewell county at an early day and
when quite a small lad, being only eight years old. He is the son
of St. Clair and Ellen Kilby of Virginia, and received his education
in the common schools of the county and entered the agricultural
pursuit and resides on section 6. He confessed his Savior before
men and united himself with the Christian Church. Sept. 1, 1853,
he was joined in marriage with Mary E. Allensworth. They have
two children, a boy and a girl. Post-office, Mackinaw.

N. L. Kilby, farmer, was born in Rappahannock county, Va.,
Feb. 17, 1832. His parents, who were also A^irginians, were St.
Clair B. and Ellen Kilby. They brought their son, N, L., to this
county when a boy of five years of age. He attended the common
schools where he received his education, grew up and made the good
confession and united with the Christian Church. He was married
to Margaret Allensworth Sept. 19, 1854. They have been blessed
with five children — two boys and three girls — but their home has
been saddened bv the death of one. Post-office, Mackinaw.

Williaiii Lilly, farmer, son of Joseph and Mary Lilly, of Mary-
land, was born in Alleghany county of that State, Aug. 12, 1822.
He came to Illinois when a lad of thirteen, and two years later
(1837) came to Tazewell county. All the advantages for an educa-
tion offi3red him were such as were aiForded him in the log school-
houses of Ohio and Illinois in pioneer times. He has held the office
of Justice of the Peace for thirteen years. July 28th, 1859, he was
uni'-ed in marriage with Elizabeth Aldridge, who has borne him four
children, three of whom are living. He is identified with the Re-
publican party. Residence, sec, 12; post-office, Minier.

James C. McClure (deceased), was born in Huntingdon county.
Pa., July 25, 1828, came to this county in 1850, and died May 28,
1877. He was educated in the common schools of his native coun-
ty. He learned the carpenter trade which he followed until his mar-
riage, and from that time until his death he follo%,ed farming. Jan.
30, 1859, he was married to Lucinda Robinson, who was born in
Green county, Ohio, Nov. 18, 1831. She is the mother of four
children — George E., born Dec. 30, 1859; Wilbur C, born Sept.
4, 1861 ; William A., Aug. 31, 1863; and James C, Oct. 27, 1866.
Mr. McClure was a life-long Democrat. His widow lives on sec. 6,
where she is engaged in farming. Her post-office address is Macki-


Elder George W. Minier. The subject of this sketch was born in


5ARAH M\^^

Little Mackinaw, Township.


the township of Ulster, Bradford Co., Penn,, October 8, 1813. His
father, John Minier, was of German descent and educated in the
German language. His mother was of English parentage and born
in the State of New Jersey. Both his grandfathers were soldiers in
the American Revolution, and he now says he desires no better
blood in his veins than that which resisted the oppressions and
usurpations of the English King and Parliamenr and gave freedom
to the thirteen colonies of North America. Aside from the public
schools of the rural district in which his father lived he had the ad-
vantage of an academy in the village of Athens. At this school
young Minier worked for his board and tuition, nights, mornings
and Saturdays, at a hotel kept by an old lady. His younger brother,
the Hon. T. L. Minier, ex-Senator, of Elmira, N. Y., attended
the same Academy. He returned to his father's house and labored
with and for his father, and at times seeking employment of the
neighboring farmers. At nineteen years of age our young friend
found himself in possession of nearly §5 ready cash and a suit of
clothes. Through a friend he obtained a school in New York and
began in earnest the office of an instructor. He continued teaching
until the spring of 1837, when he started for Illinois. One of his
first efforts in this State was the surveying of a State road from
Peru, on the Illinois lliver, to Knoxville, in Knox Co. On the 1st
day of Jan., 1839, he was married to Miss Sarah Ireland, with whom
he still lives. The fruits of this union has been twelve children,
six of each sex. Ten of these are living. In 1847 he removed to
Bloomington, McLean Co. and opened a high school for boys and
girls. In 1848 he opened the first high school exclusive for young
ladies that was ever attempted in Bloomington. In 1850, his health
being impaired, he sold his school-house and " good will " to a Mr.
Finlay, and Professor Wilber took his place as princi])al. In the
autumn of 1851 he removed to the farm on which he still lives and
began farming, to which pursuit he is enthusiastically devoted. He
purchased his land of the Government by laying a soldier's warrant,
and so got it for about eighty-three cents per acre. He united him-
self with both the Horticultural and Agricultural Societies of the
State, and was connected with them as one of the A^ice-Presidents
for a number of years. Here he rapidly improved in what he still
calls the " divine arts of tillage," emphatically declaring that " Hor-
ticulture is the religion of Agriculture." Mr. Minier was conscien-
tiouslv opposed to human slavery ; an early and outspoken abolition-
ist, and during the time of enlisting soldiers for the late war, he
made many able and eloquent speeches in favor of volunteering.
During August, 1839, Mr. Minier took the survey and topography
of a portion of the Illinois river, surveyed the bars and islands, and
ascertained by quadrant the altitude of " Starved Rock," which was
found to be 9^6 feet. In 1867, in company with Messrs. Blackstone,
Boyer and Strout, he platted the village which bears his name,
which is located three and one-half miles south of his residence, and


numbers already some 800 inhabitants. Mr. M. entered the minis-
try nearly forty years ago. During all these years very seldom a
Sunday passed that did not find him in the pulpit reproclaiming the
Gospel, and during the week among his books or in his fields and
among his herds and flocks, living like the Patriarchs with his flocks
and herds around him. Having the advantages of an extended ac-
quaintance he has probably had the pleasure of uniting in wedlock
as many persons as any other man in Central Illinois.

Theodore L. Kilmer, merchant, miller, real estate dealer and agent,
Minier ; is a son of George AV. and Sarah Minier, the former from
Pennsylvania, the mother of Virginia. He was born in Putnam
county. 111., May 18, 1842, and came to this county in 1850. He
was liberally educated by his father. After attending the common
schools he entered Bryant & Straton's Commercial College, Chicago,
from which he graduated. He also attended Wesleyan University,
Bloomington. He enlisted in company I, 94th 111. Infantry ; was
elected Sergeant and promoted First Sergeant and then Second
Lieutenant. He was appointed agent for the State of Illinois and
the Northwest for the Paris Fxposition in 1866. He is an active
member of the Christian Church and Superintendent of the Sunday-
school at Minier, He was married Aug. 3, 1870, to Ellen Arming-
ton. They have two children, girls.

Rodney J. Mitchell, banker and grain dealer, Minier ; was born in
Rutland, Meigs Co., O., Oct. 31, 1833. His parents, James G. and
Sophia (Williams) Mitchell, were natives of Pennsylvania and Ohio,
respectively. His father for nearly half a century has proclaimed
the Gospel, being a minister in the Christian Church. His son united
with that Church in 1850, and has been an active member since.
He received only a common school education. He came to this
county in 1855 and located on section 10, this township, and en-
gaged in agriculture. He remained on the farm for twelve years
when he moved into Minier and embarked in commercial life.
Mary E. Railsback, his wife, and to whom he was married Dec. 24,
1858, is the daughter of Thomas T. Railsback, one of the jpioneers
of the county. Mr. M. has served his township as Supervisor sev-
eral terms and filled other official positions. He casts his ballot and
influence with the Republican party.

Johnson A. llyers, farmer, P. O., Minier ; was born in Armstrong
county, Pa., July 2, 1828, and was brought to Tazewell county seven
years thereafter. Thus we see his life has been almost wholly passed
in this county. His parents were John and Catherine Myers,
natives of Pennsylvania. He was sent to the common schools of
this county in primitive times. Carolina A. Davis, his wife, he was
married to Sept. 21, 1847. Ten children — three boys and seven
girls — have been born to them, only five of whom are now num-
bered among the living. He is a member of the Christian Church,
and in life has been snccessful.

Henry A. Peyne was born in Germany April 3, 1844, and came,


with his father, to this country at the very tender age of one year,
and as far back as '49. When Henry was but 5 years old his father
settled at Hittle's Grove, this county. They settled in Little Macki-
naw township in '53, when they engaged in farming. Mr. Peyue
married, Jan. 31, 1871, Miss Caroline Buehrig; four children have
been born to them, 2 boys and 2 girls. Mr. P. was very successful
as a farmer but wishing to engage in the mercantile business, he
sold his fine farm and engaged in trade at Minier, where he is now
conducting a successful and growing business.

John F. Quigg, whose ancestors point with pride to the Keystone
State as the land of their nationality, himself has the proud distinc-
tion of being born in Tazewell Co., which event occurred on the 13th
day of Dec. 1841. He is one of the firm of Williams & Quigg,
bankers and grain dealers at Minier. Both branches of their busi-
ness have grown to be both extensive and lucrative, and their
methods of business transaction, has made for them a record to
which they can refer with satisfaction and feelings of pride. Mr.
Quigg dates his wedding day, and therefore his truest happiness,
from Dec. 28, 1871, at which time he clasped the hand and recorded
a vow in high heaven, that he would love and protect Miss Sheets
until death did them sever. Two little boys were sent to gladden
their home. He lives in the faith and embraces the religion of the
Christian Church.

James E. Railsback, senior member of the firm of Railsback &
Mitchell, ]\Iinicr, and a native of this county, was born Nov. 17,
1833, only a few years after the formation of Tazewell Co., and
before the native soil of these beautiful prairies had been turned by
the pioneer plowman. This firm, in addition to a general banking
business, carry on an extensive grain and lumber trade, and are rated
among the solid business firms in this county, and, indeed, their
commercial transactions and business re])utation extends beyond the
boundaries of a single county. Mr. Railsback was married, Oct. 3,
1855, to Susan M. Howell, whose death occurred Jan. 28, 1861, and
March 3, 1865, was married to Ann P. Adams, and is the parent of
four children. Mr. R. has, since 1849, been a member of the
Christian Church, in whose cause he has labored assiduously during
all these years.

Philip G. H. Railsback was born in Montgomery Co. Tenn.,
Feb. 14, 1822. His parents, Thomas F. and Louisa V. Railsback,
were Virginians. He came to the county with his parents in 1830.
His father was one of the leading pioneers and served for a number
of years County Commissioner. Philip had only such education as
the common schools of this county afforded at an early day, but,
nevertheless he has been very successful in life. He is engaged in
farming on section 6. He is a member of the Christian Church ;
politically, a Democrat. Feb. 15, 1842, he was united in marriage
with Susan M. Adams. They have five children living, three dead.
Post-ofiice, Mackinaw.


David P.Richardson, mason, Minier; son of George W. and
Mary Richardson ; the former of England, the hitter of Vermont.
He was born in Clinton county, Ind., May 2G, 1838; was educated
in public schools of Indianatown, Pa., and Methodist College at
Thornton, Ind. In May, 1861, at the breaking out of the Rebell-
ion, he enlisted as a private in company I, 20th 111. Infantry. He
was appointed Corporal, promoted to first Sergeant then to first
Lieutenant and finally Captain of the same company. He was dis-
charged July 16, 1865. He has served as United States Collector
of internal revenue for Iroquois and Ford counties and Collector of
his own township. Politically he is a Democrat. On the 30th day
of March, 1864, he was married to Lydia Parker. They have two
children living, one dead.

William F. Howell was born in Crafton county, N. H., Sept. 15,
1839. His parents, Jonathan B. and Cyntha Rowell, were also
natives of New Hampshire. Mr. R. was educated in the common
schools of New Hampshire and Illinois and Lombard Universities,
this State. He came to the State in 1849 and to this county in
1871. Among the first that went in defense of our flag, when it
was assailed by rebel hands in '61, was Wm. H. Rowell. He enlist-
ed in June, 1861, in Co. D, 8th Mo. Infantry and served till July 4,
1864. Another important event of his life occurred Oct. 20, 1869.
Upon that date he was united in marriage with Belle Dickinson.
They have four children, two girls and two boys. Politically Mr.
R. is a Republican. He is a farmer and resides on sec. 13. Post-
office, Minier.

Jolm Shreeve, farmer, sec. 25 ; P. O., Minier ; was born in Perry
county, O., March 14, 1811 ; came to this county in 1855 and set-
tled in Deer Creek township. He rented the Cullom form there for
nine years, when he purchased the £irni upon which he now lives
and cultivates. Mr. Shreeve's parents, Israel and Mary Shreeve,
were natives of Pennsylvania. He has been twice married, the first
time April 11, 1833, to Catherine Koons, who died Aug. 5, 1864.
March 9, 1865, he was married to Angeline Cooper. He united
with the Methodist Church in 1855 and in politics he adheres to the
Republican party.

William Moss Shreve, farmer, is a native of this county, having
been born in Morton township, Tazewell Co., Dec. 15, 1833. He
attended the common schools in his boyhood days and gleaned a
good common school education. His parents, Israel and Elizabeth
Shreve, were natives of Virginia and Kentucky, respectively. Mr.
S. at present holds the offices of Justice of the Peace, Highway
Commissioner and Town Trustee. He was married to Mary E.
Eggman Sept. 28, 1857, who has borne him eight children — two
boys and six girls — all of whom are living save one. He is a
member of the M. E. Church. In politics he stands upon Repub-
lican platform. He is engaged in farming on section 36, where he
has a fine farm and good improvements and displays much taste in


ornamental and shade trees and the improvement of his grounds.
Post-office, Minior.

Philip W. Smith, is a son of Pliilip H. and Catharine Smith,
Philip W. Smith, the subject of this sketch, was born in Lebanon
Co., Pcnn., Sept. 12, 1842; was educated at the public schools of
of Philadelphia, Penn. By occupation he is a shoe-maker and re-
sides in the town of ^linier. Mr. S. was Drum Major in the oth
Penn. Reserves, during the late war. He was united in marriage
Feb. 21, 1868, to Miss Emma Roothadrawl. They have six chil-
dren — three boys and three girls ; is a member of the Christian
Church. Post-office, Minier.

The following gentlemen have guided the public affiiirs of the
township since its organization.


B. F. Orendorff. 1850 John S. Bricrsrs 1S64-67

A. B. Davis 1S51-52 Rodnev J. Mitchell 186S-69

D. W. C. Orendorff lS53-o4 William Bennett 1870-71

J. L. Summers 1855-61 Asa Hicks 1872-79

Zerah Munsell 186:;



Wm. R. Adams 1854 Wm. Barrett 1867-68

J.L.Summers 1855 Ezra E. Howard 1869-73

Zerah Munsell 1856-58 J. M. Edmiston i:)74

R.J.Mitchell 1859 George W. Ferree 1875

John Hunter 1860-61 Wm. Beuhrig 1876-77

John Hendenson 1863 George Whitman 1878

Johns. Dalv 1864 Wm. Beuhrig 1879

R. J. Mitchell 1865-66


James Galbraith 18-54-56 G. AV. Minier 1865-66

George W. Minier 1857 Wm. M. Shreeve 1867

James Galbraith 1858 J. S. Briggs 1868-69

J. B. Hicks 1859 William Bennett 1870

J. S. Briggs 1860-61 J. .S. Briirgs 1871

Wm. P. Allensworth 1863 William Murdock 1372-78

J. L. Summers 1864 B. C. Allensworth 1879


T. F. RaiLsback 1854 John Rupp 1864

J. H. Ross 1855 J. E. Railsback 1865-66

Samuel B. Buckley 1856 T.J.Brown 1867-69

Richard C Gaines 1857 Richard C. Gaines 1870-71

S.B.Buckley 1858 -'Adam Hample 1872-75

R. C. Gaines 1859-60 John Ling 1876

John Hunter u 1861 Adam Hample 1877

Wm. P. Allensworth 1863 D.P.Richardson 1873-79



This was the last township of Tazewell Co. to receive its first
settler. His advent was not until 1850, over twenty-five years after
settlers came into other parts of the county. Much of the priarie
land, before the county was generally cultivated, was so wet that
many supposed it never could be tilled profitably. In this respect
Malone was worse than most any other portion of the county. We
find a very good description of the state of the land in an early day
in a report made by a commission appointed by the Legislature to
survey and appraise the swamp lands of the county. This survey
was made in 1852, and the report reads as follows: "The whole of
this body of land is such as would be generally denominated wet
prairie land. During the spring months of April and May M'ater
stands upon the ground to the debth of from one to two inches to
one to two feet. The higher ground on the west side is compara-
tively dry, and is composed of sand ridges interspersed with small
oak timber, but the prairie on the north, east and south sides is
among the best for farming purposes to be found in this section of the
county. In the course of a few years this low land will become very
valuable, both for pasture and meadow. At a little expense a ditch
could be cut into Crane lake, when the land would be dry enough
for the slough." Upon such lands as they adjudged swamp or over-
flowed lands, they put a valuation of from 50 to 80 cents per acre.
In Spring Lake they valued some land as low as 10 cents per acre.
Several years age a large ditch was cut through the township which,
with numerous small ones, a fine system of tiling and cultivation,
has relainied this rich soil, and now some of the finest farms in the
county are located here.

Among the earliest settlers here were Silas Dowed, Thos. Perry,
James McCoy, James and John AVilson, Calvin F. Buckman, Dr.
Hubbard, S. and William Latham, Joseph Watts, and William
Boyer. John A. Kerman was the first to train the children in the
school room. The first marriage occurred in 1850. Francis M.
Griffin and a daughter of James McCoy were the contracting

Mr. Wm. Boyer relates some incidents of earfy life here, that
will be read with interest, no doubt. He says Ohio, the State he
left when he came here, abounded in game, and in consequence he
had hunted a great deal. On his arrival here he found game equally


as plentiful, and he has enjoyed many exciting hunts after deer,
brant, geese, etc. One winter he, with his son, John P., Ed. Vancil
and Manuel Purcell, went on a deer hunt. A heavy snow lay upon
the ground. They started in a sleigh and soon discovered some
deer, and succeeded in killing two of them. Across the "flat"
there were two groves — one called Swamp Grove the other Ash
Grove. Between the two the deer were generally numerous. The
party saw some deer about a quarter of a mile away, and arranged
it that Ed. Vancil should circle around them with the team and
drive them through these groves, where Mr. B. and the others were
to lie in wait for them. In a short time Vancil returned and re-
ported that " the deer did not scare worth a cent." Indeed, instead
of running at his approach, they came right up to the sleigh, struck
at him, shook their antlers, and manifested unmistakable signs of
fight. At least to such an extent that Vancil acknowledged being
afraid to shoot, although well armed. At the conclusion of this
singular report the party hurried to the spot, and succeeded in get-
ting only one shot, and secured another deer. In this herd forty-
seven deer were counted by Mr. B. He relates that at that time he
could find deer at any season of the year in what was called Crane
lake swamp. This was previous to the cutting of the county ditch
and it was therefore very wet.

AVolf hunts were not unfrequent in an early day here. The
wolves were so numerous and troublesome that regularly organized
raids were made upon them. With dogs, guns, and other weapons,
the people would turn out and drive them to their coverts. At one
particular hunt, which is spoken of by John P. Boyer, six men
engaged to exterminate or intimidate the marauding rascals, to such
an extent, at least, as to aiford temporary relief. The hunt was
carried on with dogs, used for the purpose of tracking them. The
men went on foot, and often started up several and followed them

Online Librarypub Chas. C. Chapman & Co.History of Tazewell county, Illinois ; together with sketches of its cities, villages and townships, educational, religious, civil, military, and political history; portraits of prominent persons and biographies of representative citizens. History of Illinois ... Digest of state laws → online text (page 51 of 79)