Discover your family's story.
Enter a grandparent's name to get started.
L. C. Thornton, farm implements, Postmaster, Oakland; one of the pioneers of Edgar Co., Ill.; born in Washington Co., Ind., Dec. 15, 1825; he removed with his parents in 1829, being then 4 years of age, and located in Edgar Co., Ill., where he attended school, and engaged in farming until Sept. 10, 1861, when he enlisted as private in Co. E, 66th I. V. I; this regiment was composed of picked men from the various Northwestern States, selected for their skill and accuracy in handling the rifle; the 66th was known in the army as the Western Sharp-shooters, and was generally thrown out in the advance upon any important engagement, and was often detailed in squads to pick off’ the rebel gunners; Mr. T. served as private for twenty-three months, when he was promoted to Second Lieutenant, then to First Lieutenant, then to Captain, which commission he held at the close of the war; he was with Sherman’s army in his march to Atlanta, as well as the siege and capture of the same; he then made the march through Georgia to the sea, spending the Christmas of 1864 at Savannah, Georgia; he then made the march north through South and North Carolina, during which they had many severe battles, until they reached Morrisville Station, N. C., when his regiment was selected is the advance guard of Gen. Sherman when he went out to receive the surrender of Gen. Johnston; he then continued his march through to Washington, when, after the review of the army, he went to Louisville, Ky., then to Springfield, Ill., where the regiment was mustered out of service; Capt. Thornton was in the Union army three years and ten months, and while he escaped unhurt he had many narrow escapes, both of his life as well as being taken prisoner; in one engagement the regiment lost thirteen commissioned officers; at the left of Atlanta, he received seven bullets through his blouse, two through his pants, one through his underclothing, and two struck the scabbard of his sword, one of which broke the same; at the battle of Fort Donelson, his regiment was detailed in squads to pick off the rebel gunners; while performing this duty, a shell burst between him and another commissioned officer, which knocked him down and nearly buried him with sand; he was once sent out with ten men and returned alone, the others being taken prisoners; he owes his escape at this time to his presence of mind; as the rebels advanced upon him he made a stand behind a fence and commenced firing to alarm the Union camp, which so alarmed the rebels that they retreated with their other prisoners, and he made his way back to the camp of the Union army. After receiving his discharge, he located at Ashmore, Coles Co., in the lumber business, where he remained until 1871, when he removed to Oakland and engaged in the above business, which he has since followed; he received his appointment as Postmaster in December, 1871, which office he has since held. His marriage “with Annie M. Cox was celebrated Feb. 29, 1872; she was born in Ashmore, her parents locating there in 1832; they have three children now living by this union, Mary A., Annie L., and an infant,