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Arthur Robinson Stewart’s chief work in Champaign County has been as an unusually competent and capable farmer. It is one of the larger and better managed places in Champaign Township where he has put into practice the accumulated wisdom and experience of many years as an agriculturist and stockman. Mr. Stewart and family are well known socially in their country community and also in the city centers of the county.
He was born in Ross County, Ohio, July 25, 1855, but in the same year was brought to Champaign County by his parents, Samuel G. and Jane (Evans) Stewart. His father was born in New York State, April 4, 1816, and his mother in Ohio on December 28, 1820. After coming to Champaign County Samuel Stewart located land in Somers Township, and gave his time and toil to the improvement and cultivation of that farm for many years. His death occurred May 10, 1891. His wife had died August 26, 1867, and both were buried in Champaign. There were nine children: Esther, who died April 3, 1908; William, who became a Union soldier and died while still in the service at Memphis, Tennessee, October 20, 1863, being then little past twenty-one, since he was born January 14, 1842; Martha Ann, born October 28, 1843, died December 12, 1881; Mary E., born March 10, 1845, died July 15, 1893; Jane A., born September 5, 1 846, is still living in Champaign County; Robert E., born April 12, 1852, resides in Oregon; Emma D., born March 10, 1854, is the wife of George Lyman of Portsmouth, Arkansas; Arthur Robinson; and Walter N., who was born January 25, 1858, and lives at North Yakima, Washington.
In addition to the early training he secured in the common schools, and the practical experience on his father’s farm, Mr. Stewart attended the agricultural department of the University of Illinois for about two years. He remained on the old homestead in Somers Township, and subsequently was associated with his brother in managing the home farm of 200 acres. Later Mr. Stewart bought the interests of the other heirs in the farm, and retained its ownership and management until 1911, when he sold the farm to the Illinois Central Railway Company as a site for shops. Mr. Stewart then bought the old Beasly farm of 160 acres in section 1, Champaign Township. This gives him a large and productive place to manage, and he has handled it largely as a dairy proposition, having a herd of mixed Holsteins and Jerseys.
He has not neglected the public welfare while attending to his private interests and for one year served as township assessor in Somer Township. He is a Republican. He and his wife are members of the Congregational Church and Mrs. Stewart belongs to the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.
On September 4, 1900, Mr. Stewart married Margaret Nesbaume Roper, who was born in Ohio, daughter of Charles and Amelia (Nesbaume) Roper, the former a native of New Hampshire and the latter of Ohio. Mr. and Mrs. Stewart have four children: Lyman Roper, who was born June 18, 1902; Charles Robert, born November 11, 1903, and died October 3, 1904; Donald Judson, born January 25, 1906; and Catherine Elizabeth, born February 23, 1909.