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Biographical Sketch of Isaac Vail

Isaac Vail, proprietor of livery, feed and sale stable, Charleston; was born in Dutchess Co., N. Y., Nov. 29, 1833; in 1839, his father removed with his family to Chautauqua Co., N. Y., and after residing there ten years, to Erie Co., Penn., thence the next year to Steuben Co., Ind., and, in 1851, to Coles Co.; his father located 800 acres of Government land in Hickory Tp., four miles north of Charleston, at a cost of $700. Three years later he removed to Livingston Co., where he is a prominent farmer. Mr. Vail left home in 1852, driving an ox-team across the plains to Oregon, and spent three years in that State and California. He returned in 1855, and, the following year, erected a mill in Livingston Co., which he ran till the breaking-out of the rebellion. In August, 1862, he enlisted in the 129th I. V. as Sergeant in Co. E; he was with Sherman from Chattanooga to Atlanta. and on the famous march to the sea, and up through the Carolinas and Virginia to Washington, participating in all the battles of his regiment. He returned in 1865, and the same year located in Charleston, and ran a planing-mill for two years. He then sold out and went to farming, and, in 186S, built his livery-stable, and engaged in his present business. He was a member of the Board of Aldermen which, in 1875, put in the Charleston Water Works at a cost of less than $40,000, said to be the cheapest works in the State. He was married in 1852 to Miss Rebecca Fisher of Coles...

Biography of Hon. H. A. Neal

Hon. H. A. Neal, attorney at law, Charleston; is a native of’ New Hampshire; he was born in Tuftonborough, Carroll Co., Dec. 13, 1846; he was raised on a farm until he was ten years of age, and then his parents removed to Great Falls, N. H.; he attended the public schools of that city until 1863, when the family returned to the farm; in the fall of 1864, he entered the army as a member of Co. K, 18t N. H. Heavy Artillery, and served till the close of the war; on his return, he attended one term in the Academy at Effingham, N. H., and the following winter taught a country school; in the spring of 1866, he went to Poughkeepsie, N. Y., and pursued a commercial course of study in Eastman’s Business College, where he graduated in September following; he at once came West, and engaged in teaching in Coles Co.; the next year, he became Principal of the Grammar School in. Paris, and, in 1868, went to Watseka, Iroquois Co., Ill., where he had charge of the public schools for three years; the winters of 1871 and 1872, he spent in the law department of the University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, reading during vacations in the office of Wiley & Parker, in Charleston; he was admitted to the bar in June, 1873, and began practice in Charleston; in 1.875, he entered into partnership with Messrs. Wiley & Parker, the firm becoming Wiley. Parker & Neal; in 1876, Mr. Parker moved to St. Louis, since which time the firm has been Wiley & Neal. He...

Biography of Thomas W. Hallock

Thomas W. Hallock, farmer and stock-raiser; P. O. Ashmore; was born in Dutchess Co., N. Y., Jan. 20, 1811; he was raised on a farm until he was 15 years old, and then went to Troy, N. Y., where he learned the trade of a coachmaker; he worked for Eaton & Gilbert, at that time one of the largest coachmaking firms in the country; he helped to build the first railway-coach in this country, in 1829; this coach was run on the Amboy & Burtontown R. R., and was drawn by horses. Going to New York City in 1833, he entered the employ of John Stephenson, then located on Bleecker St., near the Bowery, and continued with him after he went to Harlem, and put up his large manufactory there; he remained in New York, and Newark, N. J., until 1837, when he came to Coles Co., and entered acres of land on the Embarrass River; he then rented a farm of H. J. Ashmore for five years, but owing to a lack of rain his farming venture proved an unfortunate one, and at farming end of three years he abandoned it, and removing to Charleston, engaged in carpentering, wagon-making and blacksmithing. On the restarting of the Terre Haute, Alton & St. Louis Railroad, he returned to Ashmore Tp., and settled on his present farm; at that time it was all Government land to the east, except around the groves; there was but one house on the prairie, that being on Wolf Hill; he could see, any day, from 20 to 30 deer in the vicinity; notwithstanding his first...

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