Location: Moline Illinois

Biography of James F. Rankin

James F. Rankin has proved his ability both in general business affairs and as a banker, and is the organizer and active official of the State Bank of Sidney. Mr. Rankin was born near Deland, Illinois, October 31, 1879, a son of Joseph H. and Emma (Brown) Rankin. His parents were natives of Ohio, and his father was for a number of years a general merchant at Deland, but about 1902 removed to Champaign County and located in the city of Champaign, where he is still living. James F. is the only surviving child, his younger brother, Willis D., having died in infancy. Mr. Rankin was graduated from the public schools of Deland in 1898, and soon afterward entered the employ of John Kirby, a private banker. With that experience he assisted in organizing the State Bank of Deland, which he served as assistant cashier. Then, realizing the needs of further education, he entered the Bryant & Stratton Business College at Chicago, and from there in 1901 went to the National Bank of Commerce at Kansas City, Missouri, one of the largest banks in the Missouri Valley. He served as teller there two years, and with this metropolitan experience returned to Champaign County and for four years was draft and collection teller with the First National Bank of Champaign, Illinois. He then gave up banking and for four years...

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Biography of Carl Aaron Swensson, Rev. Dr.

Rev. Dr. Carl Aaron Swensson was the founder and chief upbuilder of Bethany College, the institution around which cluster the best and most noteworthy distinctions of Lindsborg as a community and from which have gone influences that now permeate and give character to many localities through the useful men and women educated there. In an important degree Bethany College is a monnment to the late Doctor Swensson, and to a nobler one few men could aspire. He was born at Sugar Grove, Pennsylvania, June 25, 1857, a son of Jonas and Maria (Blixt) Swensson. His parents came to America in 1856 from Smoland, Sweden. His father was a noted minister of the Swedish Lutheran Church and at the time of his death in 1873 at Andover, Illinois, was president of the Augustana Synod of the Swedish Lutheran churches in America. He and his wife had been married in 1855, just a year before they started for America. Mrs. Jonas Swensson died in 1874. The late Dr. Carl A. Swensson was the oldest in a family of seven children. As a youth he attended a parochial school at Andover, Illinois, and afterwards was edueated under private tutors. At the age of sixteen he entered the freshman class of Augustana College at Rock Island, Illinois, and was graduated with the class of 1877. The same year he entered the Theological Seminary,...

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Biography of Samuel Baughman

Samuel Baughman. In the career of Samuel Baughman, now one of the leading real estate and insurance men of Chanute, there are found those qualities which make for success in business life. Industry, perseverance, a wise direction of talents and a quick grasp of opportunities have always characterized his actions, and throughout his life he has governed his operations by principles of fair dealing, so that his reputation in business matters is one which places him in an enviable position. He has been interested in a number of lines of endeavor, and in each has made a success, and the same statement applies to his management of the affairs of several public offices in which he has served. Samuel Baughman was born in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, January 6, 1842, and is a son of Peter C. and Barbara (Heck) Baughman. He belongs to a family which came from Hessen-Castle, Germany, in 1746 and located near the City of Philadelphia, from whence it removed to the western part of Pennsylvania in 1764. Peter C. Baughman was born in 1807, in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, and was there reared and educated and for many years was engaged in agricultural pursuits. In 1850 he removed to Illinois, and engaged in farming in the vicinity of Rock Island, and in 1874 made his way to Altoona, Wilson County, Kansas, where he continued his agricultural...

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Biography of Rev. O. I. Bennett

Rev. O. I. Bennett, pastor of the Christian Church at Boynton and for many years an earnest worker in a vocation which is recognized as the noblest occupation of man, is also ministering to the physical needs of the body as a chiropractor, and along both spiritual and material lines his efforts have been productive of much good. He was born in Cone, Louisa County, Iowa, September 13, 1867, a son of J. W. and Mary Arm (Manley) Bennett, natives of Indiana and of Irish descent. In 1849, when six years of age, the father was taken by his parents to Iowa, the family home being established in Louisa County. The grandfather of O. I. Bennett became well known in educational circles of the state, following the profession of teaching at Mount Pleasant until his death. His son, J. W. Bennett, acquired his education in the schools of Louisa County, Iowa, and on reaching mature years took up the occupation of farming, which he followed for many years in that locality, but is now living retired at Leavenworth, Kansas. He is an honored veteran of the Civil war, in which he served for three years as a member of Company D, Ninth Iowa Cavalry. The mother passed away on the 13th of September 1903. O. I. Bennett was reared in his native County and there pursued his education, subsequently...

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Biography of Ed Green, Col.

Col. Ed Green. While Colonel Green’s home and interests have been centered in Kansas for a number of years, he is hardly less well known in the State of Illinois, where he was reared and where he spent many active years, and in fact throughout the country and even abroad the name of Col. Ed Green is one of the most prominent associated with the breeding of short-horn cattle and of fine trotting horses. His home is now at Howard, Kansas, and he owned several ranches in that section of the state. Colonel Green was born at Indianola, Illinois, October 8, 1865. His paternal ancestry goes back to Major Green, his great-grandfather, who served with that rank in the Revolutionary war. Major Green was a brother of the still more famous Gen. Nathaniel Green, one of the most distinguished leaders of the Revolutionary forces. Colonel Green’s grandfather was Ebenezer Green, who was born in Virginia, went as a pioneer farmer to Ohio and died in that state before Colonel Green was born. L. W. Green, father of Colonel Green, was born in Lake County, Ohio, in 1831. He grew up there, and in 1859 removed to Indianola, Illinois. There he became a successful farmer and stock raiser, and he, too, as well as other members of the family, gained more than local reputation as the breeder of fine horses...

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Kempfer, Margaret Mary Van Beveren Mrs. – Obituary

Baker City, Baker County, Oregon Margaret Mary Kempfer, 90, a former Baker City resident, died Jan. 5, 2003, at Valley View Assisted Living in John Day. Rosary will be said on Thursday at Driskill Memorial Chapel in John Day, 241 S. Canyon Blvd. Mass will be celebrated Friday at St. Francis de Sales Cathedral in Baker City. Burial will follow at Mount Hope Cemetery. Mrs. Kempfer was born Feb. 7, 1912, in Moline, Ill., to John and Eliza Van Beveren, recent immigrants from Belgium. In 1915 the family moved to Baker City. She graduated from St. Francis Academy in 1930. She married Charles Kempfer in the mid-1930s. He passed away in 1970. She was employed by St. Elizabeth Hospital for many years until her retirement. She moved to John Day in 1994 and had resided at Valley View Assisted Living since 2000. Survivors include her children, John Kempfer Sr. of Aurora, Colo., and Charlene Gardner and her husband, John, of Canyon City; grandchildren, Tony Gardner and his wife, Carmen, Amy Walker and her husband, Mike, all of Canyon City, Linda Enloe and her husband, Don, of Highlands Ranch, Colo., Andy Gardner and his wife, Amber, of Sublimity, Patricia Kempfer of Aston, Penn., Jennifer Van Komen and her husband, Larry, of Nampa, Idaho, John Kempfer Jr. of Aurora, Colo.; great-grandchildren, Garret, Carli, Meghann, McKenzie, Christina, and Jacob; a sister, Palma...

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Biography of William Coyne, Senior

Rock Island County owes much to its Irish sons. They have tilled its soil, built up, developed and directed its industries, and are today among its most substantial and energetic citizens. In no case is the obligation more real than in that of William Coyne, senior, “Uncle Billy,” as he is popularly known. He was one of the earliest comers to this locality from Erin’s Isle, and after more than sixty-two years residence here is still a man of remarkable activity. He has been one of the county’s heaviest land holders, and though he has turned the greater portion of his estate over to his children he still directs the cultivation of a small farm and continues to actively look after his other business interests. William Coyne, senior, is a native of Ireland, born June 11, 1822, the son of Thomas and Martha (Brown) Coyne. His parents were Irish and the father died in that country when the son was young. The mother late in life came to America and spent her last days among her children, dying in Rock Island about 1887. There were six children: Mariah, Margaret, Matilda, Jane, William and Robert. Jane died in the mother country, but the others all became citizens of the United States. William is now the sole survivor of the family. Our subject was reared a farmer and has followed that...

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Biography of William McEniry

William McEniry, one of the early settlers of the County of Rock Island, was born in Charleville, County Cork, Ireland, a village near the line of County Limerick, on February 15, 1817, where he received his education and where he was engaged in mercantile business two years prior to his departure for America which was in April 1840, having heard much of the United States from an uncle who at that time lived in Albany, New York, he concluded to pay a visit to his uncle, and in company with his eldest sister, departed for America, arriving in New York City on a sailing vessel, steam vessels not being in use. He proceeded up the Hudson River on a steamboat to the City of Albany, and while visiting with his uncle he learned much of the country west of the Hudson River along the Erie Canal which had recently been opened to navigation. He decided to take a trip up the canal to Syracuse, and while there formed the acquaintance of John White, brother of the late Spencer White of Moline, who induced him to take charge of the office of a brick factory he was operating. In the Spring of 1841 John White’s father and mother were desirous of coming to Peoria, Illinois, to make their home with a daughter in that city. John White induced him to...

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Biography of Hon. George W. Vinton

It is a pleasure for the writer to take up the career of men who, through long years of residence in Rock Island County, have by their upright lives and splendid deeds won for themselves the enduring respect and regard of their fellow citizens. In this class the Honorable George W. Vinton stands prominent. He was born at Middlebury, Vermont, December 5, 1834. His father was John A. Vinton, who served as a drummer boy during the War of 1812. After the close of that war the father received from the United States Government a tract of land for his services. The elder Vinton was a good father, and gave his son splendid advantages for that early day. At the age of fifteen years George W. Vinton graduated from the Randolph Academy in his native State. Here he was a classmate of the late Judge Austin Adams, a former Judge of the Iowa Supreme Court. After his graduation from the Academy he was engaged in teaching for six terms. Tiring, however, of the life of a pedagogue, in 1855 he went west, settling in what was then the Territory of Minnesota. Here he learned the carpenter’s trade. In the fall of the same year he came to Moline, where he took the contract to build the Riverside Academy. Afterward he entered the employ of his uncle, John Deere, and...

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Biography of O. Frederick Anderson

One of Moline’s progressive and popular citizens, who, by his own unaided efforts and individual worth, has gone forward step by step until he now holds the position of cashier in one of that City’s leading banks, is O. Frederick Anderson, a man who merits the respect and regard of all who know him. He was born in Trehorna, Sweden, July 1, 1866, the home of his parents, Alfred Anderson and Ama Greta (Johansdotter) Anderson, the former of whom died January 25, 1881, and the latter is still living. October 27, 1868, Mr. Anderson, with his parents, came to America, and coming West, located in Moline. Here their son attended the public schools, and after completing the grammar department left the Moline schools to attend the Davenport Business College, from which he graduated. He began his business career at the early age of seventeen, when he accepted a position as collection clerk in the Moline National Bank. Conscientious and faithful in his duties, his rise was rapid, until today he is cashier of the Moline Trust and Savings Bank, being elected to that position in July, 1900, having formerly filled the position as teller of that bank. On December 16, 1891, he married Miss Sena Nielsen, a Moline young lady. Her father, Peter Nielsen, was a native of Denmark, and her mother Nellie Nielsen, of Sweden. Both Mr. and...

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Biography of Hon. John T. Browning

The oldest member of the Rock Island County Bar, a lawyer of ripe learninig and wide experience, who has now retired from the active practice of his profession, is the Honorable John T. Browning, of Moline. He was born in Genesee County, New York, June 11, 1830, his parents being John L. and Lucy (Tillotson) Browning. He received an academic education at Rochester, where later he was admitted to the bar in the Autumn of 1858. He came west in December of that same year and located at Moline, where he immediately engaged in the practice of law, being that city’s first City Attorney. Of course one of his duties in this position was to compile and arrange a code of ordinances governing the affairs of the City, and this work was done in a highly creditable and systematic manner. In 1876 he formed a law partnership with Mr. Entriken, the well known Moline attorney who has served this County as State’s Attorney and Master in Chancery, the firm being known as Browning & Entriken. Two years previous to the formation of this partnership Mr. Browning had been elected to represent this Senatorial District in the Illinois General Assembly. He was re-elected in 1876 and served through another session of the Legislature. During Mr. Browning’s young manhood he entertained very pronounced anti-slavery views and was in fact an ardent...

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Biography of Albert M. Beal, M. D.

The technical education of the doctor of medicine avails him but little unless he has laid a foundation for it of broad general knowledge and made a careful study of human nature. When he took up the practice of medicine Doctor Albert M. Beal brought to the profession a mental equipment such as few men acquire in a lifetime. For years he had been an educator, teaching the common branches in the public schools and later specializing in college. Having as a student earned the degrees of Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts, he later found opportunity to perfect his knowledge of law so that he was admitted to the bar after successfully passing the prescribed examination. With this preparation the mysteries of medicine and surgery were quickly mastered and success was his from the beginning of his professional career. Doctor Beal was born October 31, 1853, in Zuma Township, Rock Island County. His parents were Daniel N. and Betsy (Spencer) Beal, pioneers of the community. The son attended the country schools and later the public institutions of learning of Port Byron and Rock Island. At the age of seventeen he began teaching school at what is now Barstow. He entered Western College of Iowa when his preparatory studies had been completed, and graduated with the class of 1876, taking the degree of Bachelor of Arts. The following...

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Biographical Sketch of Elmer E. Morgan

Elmer E. Morgan is a lineal descendant of General Morgan of revolutionary fame. His grandfather, Isaac Morgan, was born in Kentucky in 1879 and fought in the War of 1812. Later he built the first slab house at what is now Dayton, Ohio. He came to Davenport in 1836. Isaac F. Morgan, father of Elmer Morgan, grew to manhood in the vicinity of Davenport, married Sarah E. Williams, a Tennessee lady, and settled near DeWitt, Clinton County, Iowa. There the subject of this sketch was born September 13, 1861. His early life was spent on his father’s farm and his opportunities for schooling were few. In later life by consistent, painstaking study, he obtained an excellent education, and one which he was able to turn to practical account. At the age of twenty-three Mr. Morgan sought wider fields of endeavor and took up his residence in Moline, then just beginning to show promise of becoming a great manufacturing city. He began reading law in the office of William A. Meese and soon there-after opened a collection agency, which he still conducts and which is the oldest one in this part of the State. Mr. Morgan has traveled extensively in the United States and Europe. In 1896 he toured France, Holland and the British Isles on a bicycle. He was one of the founders of the Unitarian Church in Moline...

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