Joseph Fultz, now living retired at Rantoul, has had a career filled with labors and ministrations of kindness, and has done what good he could as he went through the world. The practical side of his career has been as a farmer, and for a number of years he served as a local minister of the Methodist Church, a work of inestimable value which cannot be measured by any ordinary human standards.
Mr. Fultz was born in Washington County, Indiana, a son of Frederick and Mary Fultz, the former a native of Virginia and the latter of Indiana. Frederick Fultz was twice married, had eight children by his first wife and seven by the second. Joseph Fultz was the youngest of the first family. He was carefully reared, had a common school education and became a farmer even before he reached his majority.
At the age of twenty-one Joseph Fultz married Mary Bottorff, daughter of James and Lydia Bottorff, both of whom were born near New Albany, Indiana. James Bottorff was of German parentage. After their marriage Joseph and Mary Fultz began their wedded life on a farm in Washington County, Indiana, and farming was the work which Mr. Fultz pursued in order to provide the advantages and home life of his growing family.
Eight children were born to them, Lewis B., Herman, Ernest, Elsie, Orval, Grover, Goldie and Vesta. All were students in the district schools of Indiana. Herman Fultz married Anna Oliver, located at Salem, Indiana, and had seven children, named Gertrude, Audrey, Ina, Helen, Ruby, Everett and Fred. Lewis B. Fultz, who lives at Mount Pleasant, Michigan, married Viola Bennett, and their children are Chester, Glay, Wayne and Dale. Ernest Fultz, whose home is at Milford, Illinois, married Lottie Hilt, their five children being Claude, Howard, Glen, Carl and Derrel. Elsie married Elmer Bates, their home being in Michigan, and their three children are Marvel, Robert and Murriel. Orval is the wife of Louis Chaney, and they have a son, Victor. Grover married Roma Burkhardt, they live on a farm near Rantoul, and their four children are Clare, Dana, Dorothy and Erma. Goldie is the wife of Henry Sullivan, their home being on a farm near Rantoul, and their one child is Mildred. Vesta is the wife of Ed Gauntt, and they have a farm near Ludlow, Illinois.
Mr. and Mrs. Fultz strained every effort and made many sacrifices in order that their children might be well reared and well trained for the duties and responsibilities of life. Both Mr. and Mrs. Fultz are active members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and Mr. Fultz served as church trustee for a number of years. He was a township supervisor in Indiana, and politically he formerly voted as a Democrat but latterly has been a strong and ardent Prohibitionist and foresees in the near future the bright day when America will be committed to temperance, not only locally but nationally.
Mr. Fultz’s father donated land for the first Methodist Episcopal Church in his neighborhood in Washington County, Indiana. The passing years have witnessed three different churches built on the same plot of ground. In 1916 they dedicated a fine chapel. Perhaps the brightest memories of Joseph Fultz are the twelve years of service he gave to the church as local pastor. During that time he not only preached from the pulpit but visited the sick, comforted the dying, baptized the converts, attended funerals, solemnized marriages, and found a host of Christian deeds ready for performance. His good wife shared with him in all these labors, and many a home has blessed their presence.