J. F. Drish, dealer in general hardware and agricultural implements, Mattoon; was born in Leesburg, Loudoun Co., Va., May 8, 1833; his father came west to Illinois in 1836 or 1837, and first settled in Whitehall, Greene Co., where he engaged in the practice of his profession-that of a physician and surgeon; at the age of 19, the subject of this sketch left home and crossed the plains to California; here he engaged in speculating and contracting; in 1854, he returned by way of the Isthmus of Panama and New York City; he next settled in Carlinville, and engaged in the dry goods and grocery trade till 1861. At the breaking of the civil war, he entered in the U. S. service in the 32d V. I., as Adjutant of the regiment; in April, 1862, he came home and assisted in raising and organizing the 122d I. V. I., and again entered the service as Lieutenant Colonel of the regiment; he was mustered out of the service in 1865, having been actively engaged with the regiment during its entire term of service. In 1865, he settled in Mattoon and engaged in his present occupation. He was married, in 1856, to Rosella C. Keller, a native of Illinois; they have two daughters-L. M. and Frankie, He has held the office of Supervisor two terms, and was Chairman of the Board during his last term; he was chosen Mayor of the city in 1867, serving out a portion of the first Mayoralty under the new city charter; he has held the office of President one term, and that of Secretary one term, of the Board of Education. He participated in the battles of Forts Henry, Donelson, Pittsburg Landing, Parker’s Cross Roads, Nashville, and many others; he was wounded in the shoulder on the 9th day of April, 1865, in the assault on Fort Blakely, at Mobile; this battle was fought after the war was virtually at an end.
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