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Howard Wisegarver. Profitable farming depends upon a number of essential things. First, perhaps, there must be good soil, incidentally the climate has much to do with it, and transportation facilities have to be considered, but last and by no means least, is the farmer himself. In modern days the farmer is a man not only of industry but also of a great deal of knowledge and the more experience he can call to his aid the more chance has he of being able to make every inch of his domain return him a profit. Judging by the success that has attended his agricultural efforts, Howard Wisegarver, one of Champaign Township’s most respected citizens, is also one of her best farmers.
Howard Wisegarver was born August 31, 1873, in Champaign Township, Champaign County, Illinois, and is a son of William H. and Myra (Hetrick) Wisegarver. They were both born in Bedford County, Pennsylvania, and were reared, educated and married there. The father came to Illinois in 1869 and his wife came in 1872. He settled first in DeWitt County but afterward purchased 160 acres in Section 35, Champaign Township, Champaign County. Here he carried c/n general farming and stock-raising and this continued his home until the time of his death, May 30, 1913. He left a fine, well improved property. To his marriage with Myra Hetrick, who survives and lives with her eldest son, there were three children born, namely: Howard, Mary and William H. Mary died in infancy.
Howard Wisegarver attended the public schools in Champaign Township, thereby securing a good, solid common school education, which is an admirable foundation upon which to build in carrying on any business. He remained at home and helped his father until 1901, after which he farmed for himself on a rented tract of eighty-five acres and for three years more carried on farming operations on a still larger tract, having 100 acres to manage. In the meanwhile his attention had been called to the great opportunities offered settlers in San Luis Valley, Colorado, and becoming interested he decided to go out there and prospect a little, which resulted in his purchasing eighty acres in San Luis Valley and Conejos County, Colorado, and he spent the next four years there. Mr. Wisegarver returned then to Champaign County, his father having died in the meanwhile, and took charge of the home farm and has remained here ever since. He carries on general farming and stock raising and has the reputation of being one of the most successful agriculturists in the county.
Mr. Wisegarver was married May 1, 1901, to Miss Mary Rea, who was born in the State of Ohio and died in Conejos County, Colorado, in February, 1908. In January, 1914, Mr. Wisegarver was married to Miss Minnie Emig, who was born in Piatt County, Illinois. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church and are not only attendants, but active workers and dependable contributors. In politics Mr. Wisegarver has never been unduly active and maintains an independent attitude, casting his vote according to his own excellent judgment.