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William W Davis.

History of Whiteside County, Illinois from its earliest settlement to 1908 : illustrated, with biographical sketches of some prominent citizens of the county (Volume v.1) online

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respected in the community where they have so long made their home and
their friends are numbered by the score.



A. E. PARMENTER.

A. E. Parmenter is one of the successful merchants of Lyndon, where
he is conducting business under the firm style of Parmenter Brothers. He
was born in Rock Island county, Illinois, near Reynolds, on the 20th of
December, 1853, his parents being John G. and Harriett R. (Waite) Par-
menter. They were natives of the east, but in childhood became residents of
Rock Island county, being among the pioneer people of that locality. There
they were reared and married and made their home for a considerable period,
but at length removed to Lyndon, where their remaining days were passed.
The father died at the age of sixty-two years,while the mother reached the
age of sixty-nine. In their family were four children: George H., now
deceased ; Charles ; Mrs. Sophia Brewer, who has also passed away ; and A. E.,
of this review.

The last named remained a resident of his native county until January,
1880. He was reared on the home farm, early becoming familiar with the
duties and labors that fall to the lot of the agriculturist. He is indebted to
the public-school system for the educational privileges which he enjoyed and
to his parents for good home influences which made him early recognize the
value of integrity and industry in the active affairs of life. In January,
1880, removing to Lyndon, he established a general mercantile store in con-
nection with his brother-in-law, A. M. Bruner. This association was con-
tinued for two years, at the end of which time George H. Parmenter pur-
chased Mr. Bruner's interest and the firm of Parmenter Brothers was then
organized. They continued together in business until three years ago, when
George H. Parmenter died, since which time A. E. Parmenter has been alone
in business, although he continues under the old firm style. While upon the
farm he not only tilled the soil but also became connected with live-stock
interests and is now engaged in buying and selling live stock with Echel-
barger Brothers. He has been connected with this line of business during
almost the entire period of his residence in Lyndon and has derived a good
income from it, as well as from his mercantile interests. The store is well
stocked with a large line of goods, for which he finds a ready sale, owing to
his reasonable prices and honorable methods.



472 HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY

In 1883 Mr. Parmenter was married to Miss Mattie A. Smith, a daughter
of Jabez and Adaline Smith. The father is now deceased, while the mother
resides with Mr. and Mrs. Parmenter. Three children have been added to
this family: Sophia, Harriet and Elbert, all of whom were born in Lyndon
and are yet under the parental roof.

In his political views Mr. Parmenter has ever been a stalwart republican
since he first went to the polls and deposited the ballot to which his age gave
him right. He became supervisor of Lyndon township in 1897 and has
served continuously since, being, six times chosen to the office. His capability
is indicated in his frequent election and in the discharge of his duties he
displays a public spirit which is most commendable. He has been a member
of the Modern Woodman camp for the past twenty years and for ten years
has been affiliated with the Mystic Workers of Lyndon. His religious faith
is indicated by his membership in the Methodist Episcopal church in the
work of which he is actively interested and for the past twelve years he has
served as one of the church trustees. The village finds in him a stalwart
supporter of all her progressive interests and while devoted to the public wel-
fare he is also deriving substantial benefit from his private business interests.



EDMUND JACKSON.

Edmund Jackson, widely known in fraternal circles, is numbered among
(hose whose executive ability and powers of organization have had direct
bearing upon the growth and upbuilding of fraternal interests, not only in
the place of his residence but throughout the country. He is today supreme
secretary of the Mystic Workers of the World and in this connection his
acquaintance is a very wide one. He is also associated with other organiza-
tions based upon mutual helpfulness and brotherly kindness and his thor-
ough sympathy with their object makes him an affective working force for
their growth.

Mr, Jackson is a native of the state of New York, his birth having
occurred in Greenbush, now Rensselaer, May 3, 1853. His parents were
Edmund and Ann (Adams) Jackson, the former born in Staffordshire,
August 26, 1820, and the latter in Herefordshire, England, August 28, 1823.
Through the period of their youth they remained residents of their native
land and were there married August 22, 1841. Five children had been added
to the family circle ere they left England for the new world, the father hoping
to find better opportunities for providing for his family in the lines of both
financial and intellectual development. Accordingly, he crossed the Atlantic
in March, 1851, and after establishing a temporary home at Greenbush, New
York, sent for his family and in August of that year was joined by his wife
and children. Two years were passed in the Empire state and then again
the family started westward, this time with Illinois as their destination.
Favorable reports had reached them concerning conditions in this state, where
land sold at a low figure and homes might therefore be secured easily. Mr.



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HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY 475

Jackson located in Kankakee county and purchased a farm near Manteno,
where he carried on general agricultural pursuits and stock-raising. As the
years passed he brought his fields under a high state of cultivation and con-
ducted his farm in accordance with the most progressive ideas of modern
agriculture. He won success as the years passed and with a comfortable
competence he retired from active life, establishing his home in the village
of Manteno, where he and his wife spent their remaining days. They had
traveled life's journey happily together for fifty-six years ere they wers
separated by the hand of death, Mrs. Jackson dying in 1902. Mr. Jackson
survived for three years and passed away in 1905. Plis study of the political
situation of this country and the issues before the people led him to give
loyal support to the republican party, for he believed its platform most con-
ducive to good government. His religious faith was that of the Episcopalian
church. Unto him and his wife were born nine children: Joseph, who fol-
lows farming near Wolcott, Indiana; Thomas, who is engaged in the grain
and stock business in Wolcott; Stephen, deceased; David, a traveling sales-
man located at Oakland, California; Lucy M., of Manteno, Illinois; Edmund;
William W., who occupies the family homestead in Kankakee county ; An-
drew, who has departed this life; and George W., who owns and conducts a
store in Manteno.

In his infancy Edmund Jackson was brought by his parents to Illinois
and the usual experiences of the farm boy were his during his youthful days.
He pursued his education in the public schools of Manteno township to the
age of eighteen years, when he began teaching, devoting the succeeding five
years to that profession in Illinois, Indiana and Kansas. Turning his atten-
tion to commercial pursuits, he conducted a store for two and a half years in
Searsboro, Iowa. He then removed his stock to What Cheer, Iowa, where
he carried on business successfully until the fall of 1881. On withdrawing
from commercial lines he established a real-estate and insurance office at
What Cheer, where he continued in that business for nine years. He next
entered the field of banking, as president of the First National Bank of What
Cheer, remaining at the head of the institution for three and a half years.
Disposing of his stock in the bank, in March, 1894, he removed to Fulton
and again opened a real-estate and insurance office. In the meantime, how-
ever, he was giving considerable attention to mutual benevolent and fraternal
organizations, realizing the possibilities for general benefit in these lines. In
the spring of 1895, therefore, he became interested with Dr. Clendennen in
the organization of the Mystic Workers of the World and from that time
forward has given his undivided attention to the interests of the organization,
which has made substantial growth until it now has a large membership.
He is supreme secretary and his executive force, keen discrimination and
capable management have been strong elements in the successful control and
development of this society. Since 1900 he has also become a member of the
Modern Brotherhood of America, the Brotherhood of American Yeomen, the
American Stars of Equity, the Fraternal Tribunes, the Home Guard of
America, the Woodmen's Modern Protective Association, and the National
Protective Legion, all of which have strongly pronounced benevolent and



478 HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY

fraternal features. He is likewise affiliated with the Masonic order and has
attained the thirty-second degree of the Scottish rite in Freeport Consistory.
Of Fulton City Lodge, No. 189, A. F. & A. M., he is a past master, and of
Fulton Chapter, No. 108, R. A. M., is a past high priest. He is likewise past
patron of Merton Chapter, No. 356, 0. E. S., and in 1902 was elected grand
patron of the grand chapter of the Eastern Star of the state of Illinois. He
belongs to Holy Cross Commandery, No. 10, K. T., of Iowa and Kaaba
Temple of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine. His membership relations also
extend to other orders, including Abou Ben Adhem Lodge, No. 148, I. 0.
O. F., of which he is a past grand, and Sylvia Lodge, No. 112, K. P., of
Iowa. In all of these orders he has taken a more or less active part and is
in thorough sympathy with their principles, for they are based upon mutual
helpfulness and brotherly kindness. Since 1900 he has continued in the
position of supreme secretary of the Mystic Workers of the World and in
1904 was elected a member of the state board of equalization for the thir-
teenth congressional district. In March, 1901, he was elected secretary and
treasurer of the Associated Fraternities of America, serving until 1903, when
he was elected president and filled the position for one term, there being a
rule in the organization against re-election to that office.

Mr. Jackson was married on the 21st of March, 1877, to Miss Emma
G. Bennett, of Eureka, Kansas, who was born near Xenia, Ohio, the daughter
of Ralph and Rebecca (Hamilton) Bennett. They have one daughter, Una
G., who is now the wife of E. Leroy Meade, of Oklahoma.

Mr. Jackson in his political views is a republican, having been associated
with the party since age conferred upon him the right of franchise. He has
filled the office of justice of the peace in different places where he has resided
and his decisions have ever been strictly fair and impartial. While residing
in What Cheer he served as a member of the school board and was mayor of
the city for one term, his service indicating clearly his fidelity to duty and
his loyalty to the interests of the municipality. In 1906 he was elected police
magistrate of Fulton. No trust reposed in him has ever been betrayed in the
slightest degree and he is widely recognized as a man of broad humanitarian
principles and views, who recognizes individual obligation and responsibility
and who works for that spirit among his fellowmen that prompts mutual
helpfulness and kindliness. He is himself a worthy exemplar of the orders
which have such qualities as their basic element, and in his official relations
with different societies he has become very widely and favorably known.



LEOPOLD STOECKLE.

Leopold Stoeckle, now deceased, was born in Baden, Germany. Novem-
ber 11, 1832, and of that country his parents, Ludwig and Eliza Stoeckle,
were also natives. Their family numbered eight children, six sons and two
daughters, but all are probably now deceased. The father was a stone-cutter
by trade and came to America in 1845, settling first at. Cleveland. Ohio. He



HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY 477

afterward removed to Chicago, where he lived for several years and there the
death of his wife occurred. He next returned to Cleveland, .where he spent
his remaining days with several of his children, being more than seventy
years of age at the time of his demise.

Leopold Stoeckle was only thirteen years of age when he made the long
voyage across the Atlantic with his parents. He had begun his education in
the schools of Germany. His later youth was passed in Chicago and he
learned and followed the barber's trade there. As a companion and helpmate
for life's journey he chose Miss Katherine Bergman; whom he married on
the 5th of January, 1852. She is a daughter of Johan August and Katherine
(Stefjan) Bergman. Her father was a carpenter and builder, who followed
his trade in Chicago after his emigration with his family to the new world.
There he continued to reside until his death. His wife survived him for
about ten years and died in 1877, at the age of fifty-five years. They were the
parents of thirteen children, seven sons and six daughters, which number in-
cluded Mrs. Stoeckle, who came to America with her parents in 1845. She
was then a young lady of about fourteen years, having been born in Prussia,
Germany, February 15, 1831. She grew to womanhood in Chicago and was
there married to Leopold Stoeckle.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Stoeckle were born thirteen children, ten sons and
three daughters, as follows: John Lee, who was born November 26, 1852,
wedded Maria Sheppard, and his death occurred October 8, 1903. Rosa and
Katie, twins, born December 15, 1853, are deceased. Emil Albert, who was
born April 5, 1855, wedded Alice O'Dair and makes his home in Sterling.
James, who was born November 27, 1856, died in infancy. Mary Ann, who
was born February 11, 1858, is the wife of William Perkins, their home being
in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She has one son, Walter. Eugene, the next
member of the family, was born December 14, 1859, and died in infancy.
Edward Eugene, who was born December 17, 1860, is a barber in Stafford,
Kansas. He wedded Miss Bess Gilbert, by whom he has two daughters, Pearl
and Jeannette. Walter Julian, who was born October 2, 1862, is a mail
carrier in Sterling. He wedded Mary Baer, by whom he has three children,
Leopold Walter, Fern J. and F. Louis. Julius, who was born January 5,
1865, died in infancy. William was born October 24, 1866, and died in
1868 at the age of nineteen months. William August, who was born October
6, 1868, is employed in the Dillon-Griswold wire mill at Sterling. He wedded
Ilattie Schmoeger, by whom he has three children, Arthur Adam, George
William and Katharine. George Ludolph, who was born October 10, 1871,
was drowned when he had almost reached the age of sixteen year*.

Leopold Stoeckle arrived in Sterling in 1859, when a young man of
twenty-seven years. Here he followed the barber's trade until his death,
which occurred June 1, 1881. He was an excellent workman and his genial,
cordial disposition and unfailing courtesy made him popular with the gen-
oral public and gained him many patrons. He was a prominent Mason and
Odd Fellow. At the time of the Civil war he was most loyal to the interests
of the Union and helped to recruit soldiers for the northern army. No native-
born son of America was more devoted to the interests of his community than



478 HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY

was Leopold Stoeckle to the welfare of his adopted county, and his many
friends and acquaintances esteemed him as a gentleman of genuine worth.
Mrs. Stoeckle still survives her husband and has a beautiful home which
she built in 1892. She also owns a brick business block at No. 1 East Third
street, now occupied by Martin Brothers, and also the business block now
occupied by the E. & W. clothing house, together with several good residence
properties in the city. She has lived in Sterling for forty-eight years and
since her husband's death 'has shown excellent business traits in the care of
her financial and invested interests. Moreover, she is a lady of intelligence
and refinement and a model wife and mother.



HON. CALEB C. JOHNSON.

Hon. Caleb C. Johnson, closely associated with the legal and political
history of Sterling and Whiteside county, his course reflecting credit upon
the district which knows him as a progressive, public-spirited and honored
citizen, was born May 23, 1844, in one of the pioneer log houses of the town-
ship of Ustick, about four miles northeast of Fulton.

His paternal grandfather, John Johnson, was born in England and came
to this country with his two brothers, Elias and - . The two brothers

both went south and all trace of them has been lost. John Johnson married
first, Sarah Conke, a native of Holland, and had six children: Sarah, Per-
melia, Abigail, Betsy, Jesse and Elias. He married, second, Rebecka Os-
trander, by whom he had one boy, John. He practiced law in Troy, New
York, and won a reputation as a noted criminal lawyer, being a man of
marked eloquence and oratorical power. He served his country as a soldier
in the Revolutionary war and lived to a ripe old age.

His son, Jesse Johnson, father of our subject, was born in Troy, New
York, April 2, 1798, and when a small child lost his mother. His father
having married again, he left home at the early age of twelve, and never
again saw any of his people. He sailed on the lakes for some time and then
returned to Lewis county, New York, settling near Lowville, where he met
and married Miss Mary Webb, of West Hadley, New York, she being a
daughter of Charles and Mary (Gilbert) Webb, both natives of the Empire
state. Her mother lived tot be ninety-seven years of age.

Following his marriage, which took place in the. year 1822, Jesse John-
son engaged in farming and in clearing land. About 1835 he removed with
his family to Indiana, settling at Mishawaka, near South Bend, where a con-
tract to dig a mill race was let to him. He was engaged as a contractor there
for about two years. In 1838 he came to Whiteside county, Illinois, his
objective point being Plainville. But he learned that a man by- the name of
Wing, who owed him a thousand dollars, was at Fulton. He therefore made
his way to Fulton, and in the course of time effected a settlement, accepting
pay principally in town lots. He was there just before the land came into
market and made a claim of three hundred and twenty acres, which he



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HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY 481

entered and improved, continuing the cultivation and development of that
property until 1853. There was a great deal of stone in the bluffs and with
some of this he built a -fine house. He had one of the most beautiful farms
for stock to be found anywhere.

In 1853, however, he left the farm and moved to Fulton, purchasing
the ferry franchise across the Mississippi river, and, in company with his
son-in-law, William Knight, putting on the first steam ferry that was ever
operated on the Mississippi north of St. Louis. The boat was a nice side-
wheeler called the "Sarah," named after his daughter, Sarah, the wife of Wil-
liam Knight, and was built for Mr. Johnson at the large steamboat yards at
New Albany, Indiana. He brought her down the Ohio to Cairo and thence up
the Mississippi to Fulton. After operating the ferry for two or three years,
he invested his means in town lots, which rose continuously in value until
Clinton was made the division town on the railroad.

Mr. Johnson resided in Fulton until his death, which occurred October
12, 1876. His widow died April 18, 1879. He was the father of twelve chil-
dren, all of whom reached maturity with the exception of Cornelia P., who
died in infancy. Five of the children are now living. Cornelia P. (second)
is the widow of Richard Green, of Fulton, and is now living there; Hen-
rietta, the widow of Charles A. Davidson, is now living in Kansas City,
Missouri ; Eliza N., the widow of Samuel Dennison, is also living in Kansas
City, Missouri; Anna M., the widow of William Reed of Fulton, is now living
with her son, George, in Louisiana; and Caleb C.

One son, Charles J. Johnson, went to Morrison, Illinois, about 1856, and
practiced law there for a number of years, after which he went to Rock
Island and later to Chicago, but eventually returned to Whiteside county and
located in Sterling, where he formed a partnership with his brother, Caleb
C., and continued in the practice of law until he had attained an advanced
age. He died at the home of his sister, Mary Ware, near Fulton, in July,
1899. At one time he was judge of the county court of Whiteside county
and was long regarded as a most powerful and eminent attorney.

Another son, Edward L. Johnson, served throughout the Civil war,
enlisting in the First Nebraska Infantry as a private, but died before he
reached home, while his regiment was at Cape Girardeau, Missouri.

Cornelia P. (second) and Harriet married brothers, Richard and Wil-
liam C. Green, respectively, both prominent residents of Fulton.

Caleb C. Johnson was reared in this county, spending the first eight
years of his life on the home farm and then accompanying his parents on
their removal to Fulton. He was educated in the common schools and at
the Military Academy at Fulton, and entered from there into the life of the
volunteer soldier, enlisting as a member of Company C, Sixty-ninth Illinois
Volunteer Infantry. He re-enlisted in Company D, One Hundred and
Fortieth Illinois Infantry, and served until the end of the war. The regi-
ment was principally engaged in guarding railroads and was badly cut to
pieces by guerrillas.

His military service ended, Mr. Johnson returned to Fulton, and in
1866 went to Morrison, Illinois, where he began reading law in his brother's



482 HISTORY OF WHITESIDE COUNTY

office. In 1867 he was admitted to the bar. In 1868 he accepted a position
as clerk on one of the large boats belonging to the Diamond Joe line and
found this a very delightful occupation. But, in March, 1869, he came to
Sterling, where he entered into partnership with Major Mile? S. Henry.
They opened a law office in the building where Mr. Johnson is now located
and remained together until Mr. Henry's death in 1878. He was then
joined by his brother in a partnership under the firm style of C. J. & C. C.
Johnson, continuing together until 1893, at which time he went to North
Dakota, having been appointed receiver of a national bank at Jamestown,
North Dakota, by James H. Eckels, comptroller of the currency. In 1896,
after settling up the affairs of the bank, he returned to Sterling and again
became actively engaged in the practice of law.

His name is familiar to all those who are at all acquainted with the
legal history of Whiteside county.' He has been retained by either the de-
fense or the prosecution in a great many of the important cases tried in the
courts of the district. He never fails to prepare his cases thoroughly for
trial, and the presentation of them indicates a mind trained in the severest
school of investigation, and to which close reasoning has become habitual
and easy. His deductions follow in logical sequence, and his marked ability
is demonstrated by the many notable forensic victories he has won.

On the 15th of August, 1871, Mr. Johnson was married to Miss Jo-
sephine E. Worthington, a daughter of Eliphalet Bulkeley Worthington,
long deputy clerk of Whiteside county circuit court, and Sarah (McShane)
Worthington. They have one son, Jesse W., a graduate of the University of
Wisconsin. He is now reading law in his father's office, having spent two
years in the graduate Law School of the University of Chicago. He married
Miss Jessie L. Sharpe, of Jacksonville, Illinois, and they have one son, Wil-
liam S.

Caleb C. Johnson is an exemplary member of Rock River Lodge, No.
612, A. F. & A. M. ; Sterling Chapter/No. 57, R. A. M., and Sterling Com-
mandery, No. 57, K. T., of which he was the first eminent commander, serv-
ing for two and one-half years. And he was also an officer in the grand com-
mandery of Illinois.

Politically, he is a democrat and has been honored by a number of
official positions. At one time he served on the board of supervisors and
was a member of the building committee that had in charge the erection of
the clerk's office at Morrison. He served as city attorney for a number of
terms, first in 1869. In 1885 he was elected to the Illinois legislature and



Online LibraryWilliam W DavisHistory of Whiteside County, Illinois from its earliest settlement to 1908 : illustrated, with biographical sketches of some prominent citizens of the county (Volume v.1) → online text (page 55 of 72)