Location: Anchor Illinois

History of Anchor Illinois

What is now Anchor, Town 24, Range 6 east of the Third Principal Meridian, is the easternmost of the middle tier of townships of McLean County, being bounded on the east by Ford County, and is just about midway between Indian Grove on the north and Cheney’s Grove on the south, Burr Oak Grove on the east and Old Town Timber on the west. During most of its history it has been a part of Cropsey and, of course, its history is much blended with that. The reader is referred, therefore, to Cropsey for many things which the writer does not deem best to repeat here. Until 1877, this town and Cropsey were together in political organization. A little unfriendliness had grown up ; there did not seem to be any convenient common center for holding town meetings, and a little strife was known to exist between the north and south ends on town affairs. In 1876, a petition was presented to the Board of Supervisors, signed by many of the principal citizens, asking to have the town divided. The Board granted the petition, and at the suggestion of George R. Back, who was then Supervisor, the new town was named Anchor. What small debts there were, were equitably divided, and the township ” property,” consisting of a record-book and Clerk’s desk, were parted between them, Cropsey taking the...

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Church History of Anchor Illinois

Anchor is reasonably well supplied with churches, and the people seem to be interested in spiritual matters. ” Prairie Chapel” (M. E.), a neat and plain structure, standing near the iron bridge is 30×40, and was built in 1874, at a cost of $1,300. Preaching had been held in the schoolhouse for some years quite regularly, when it was thought best to build the chapel. Messrs. O. D. Butler, Alex. Shannon, J. C. Swatsley, Z. C. Worley and H. A. Thompson were selected to look after the work. It belongs to Fairbury Circuit, and the pulpit has been supplied by Revs. D. R. Dietch, Mr. Bealer and James Sanders. who now officiates. Preaching service is held each alternate Sabbath, and a Sabbath school is maintained. Bethel M. E. Church was built on Section 32, in 1876. Mr. George R. Buck, a resident of the town, organized a “class ” in 1873, at the Sherwood schoolhouse. After the organization of the Church, Rev. Josiah Kern preached two years. Then followed Rev. William Wiley, under whom the church was built. D. B. Spencer, Abraham Crotinger and G. R. Buck were the leading spirits in the building of this neat edifice. It is 32×46, and cost $1,600. Rev. Mr. Souders and Rev. Mr. Flowers have since officiated. This Church belongs to Union Circuit. . George R. Buck was instrumental in starting a...

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Early Settlers of Anchor Illinois

The oldest resident now living in town is John Sharpless. He came from Indiana with a family consisting of wife and five children, and worked a farm two years at Indian Grove. He made an arrangement, as he supposed, to work a piece for Capt. Johnson, at the Mackinaw timber, for the year 1863; but a misunderstanding occurred, and he left. It was late for renting, and the only chance be could get was a half-section of the Stackpole land on Section 18, and, very much against his will, he was obliged to take a prairie farm. He liked it so much better than he expected, that he lives near the same place, on Section 29, now. There was a farm lying near by that had been cropped in 1861, but had lain idle in 1862. The proprietor offered to take one-fifth grain rent for it, but he could not find any one to take. Sharpless gave the usual rent, one-third. There were plenty of deer and wolves at this time, but he did not give much attention to them. He found his time fully occupied on the farm. After working the land two years, he bought of Jones, where he lives. Sharpless was and is an ardent believer in the Democratic party, and tells how he felt when he attended the first election in this town and put...

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