Biography of Thomas Gordon
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Thomas Gordon. As a farmer and farm manager Thomas Gordon is easily one of the ‘leading figures in Champaign County. He has acquired and developed and superintends through his tenants and managers an estate of 975 acres in Compromise Township. For a number o”f years Mr. Gordon has lived in the Town of Penfield, and goes out from there almost daily to look after his business affairs.
Mr. Gordon is a native of Aurora, Illinois, a son of John and Mary (Whalen) Gordon. Both of them were natives of Ireland and came to America in early life. When Thomas was about ten years of age they settled in Champaign County, where their family of five sons and three daughters were educated in the local schools.
In 1906 Thomas Gordon gained a capable companion and helpmate for himself in the person of Miss Blanche Hobbins. She was born at London, Canada, daughter of Daniel and Julia (Farmer) Hobbins. Her father was a Canadian farmer and there were just two daughters in the family, namely, Mary and Blanche. Mary is the wife of Mr. Crunican of London, Ontario. Mrs. Gordon has a cousin, Sergeant R. J. Farmer, who is a graduate of the London Medical College, and is now in the English Navy on the Salmon. Mrs. Gordon was eleven months old when her father died and her mother, desiring to give her daughters the best of advantage, sold the farm and moved to the City of London, Canada. Her daughters were pupils in St. Peter’s separate school and from there entered high school and later were students in the London Collegiate Institute while Mr. F. W. Merchant was principal. Mrs. Gordon graduated with honors in 1899, and having taken special training with a view to becoming a teacher went to North Dakota and taught at Elm Point, Freement and Crystal. At Crystal she was assistant principal in the high school under W. R. Decker, the principal. She had the satisfaction of seeing the entire class successfully pass their examinations, a fact she was congratulated upon by the board. After completing her last term there and before returning to her home in Canada she stopped in Champaign County, Illinois, to visit her uncle, Cornelius Clifford. While there she met the young man Thomas Gordon, and their acquaintance ripened into matrimony. They were married in St. Lawrence Church at Penfield in September, 1906. The ceremony was performed by Rev. Father Quirk, a warm personal friend of Mr. Gordon, both young men being of the same age. Father Quirk came from Ottawa, Illinois, to solemnize his friend’s marriage.
Mr. and Mrs. Gordon then located in Penfield, a location that allows Mr. Gordon to superintend his several farms with the greatest convenience, at the same time allowing his family the advantages of town life.
Mr. and Mrs. Gordon are the parents of five children, four sons and one daughter, John Anthony, Daniel Nicholas, Thomas Cornelius, Lawrence Ignatius and Mary Angela. Mr. and Mrs. Gordon are active members and liberal supporters of the Catholic Church. In politics Mr. Gordon is a Democrat and a great admirer of President Wilson, believing him to be the man of the hour and the American best fitted to guide the nation through the strenuous and critical times of the present. Mr. Gordon has served a number of years as school director and has done everything in his power to make the schools what they should be as institutions for the education of the future generation. It was his good fortune to secure for his wife a woman of thorough education, culture and refinement, and she has been a big factor in his success and standing in the community. Mr. and Mrs. Gordon have a home of noted hospitality, and they enter heartily into all social and community affairs. Mr. Gordon’s parents have long since passed away, but the name remains today, as always, one entitled to the complete respect of the community with which it has been identified for so many years.