Location: Sangamon County IL

Bilyeu, Andrew Jackson – Obituary

On Monday night at midnight [October 19, 1896] A. J. Bilyeu (Uncle Jack), a resident of Scio for many years, died at the residence of his son-in-law, Jesse Ray of Jordan. As a citizen, Uncle Jack was among our most substantial and trustworthy, always ready to accommodate a neighbor or friend he was respected by everyone. [Andrew was born in 1830 Sangamon Co., IL. He married Sarah Ann Terry in 1855 Linn Co. He was the father of eleven children. Andrew is interred in the Bilyeu Den Cemetery with his wife and many other members of the family]. Contributed by: Shelli...

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Biography of Eli A. Boutwell

Eli A. Boutwell, a farmer and lumberman of Hopkinton, N.H., son of Samuel P. and Lydia A. (Allen) Boutwell, was born in Barre, Vt., February 25, 1833. His lineage has not been traced; but a little research would probably show that he belongs to the old New England family of Boutwells, of which the Hon. George S. Boutwell, ex-Secretary of the Treasury, is a representative. Its founder, James Boutwell, said to have been made a freeman in Lynn, Mass., in 1638 or 1639, died in 1651, leaving a wife Alice, sons James and John, and a daughter Sarah. The sons married, and settled in Reading, Mass., John being the ancestor of the distinguished statesman. Some of the descendants of the second James, and perhaps others, have spelled the name Boutelle. Nehemiah Boutwell, grandfather of Eli A., of Hopkinton, was a native of Vermont, and served in the Revolutionary War at the time of the raid on Plattsburg, N.Y., when the English made a naval display. He married Susannah Holt. Samuel P., his eldest child, was born in 1806 in Barre, Vt. He married Lydia A. Allen, a daughter of Nathan and Esther (Paine) Allen. She was a relative of Ethan Allen, and resided in Brookfield, Vt. Samuel P. Boutwell and his wife reared fourteen children, only seven of whom are at present living, most of them in Vermont. Samuel...

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Biography of James L. Reat, M. D.

James Lee Reat, M. D., one of the most distinguished physicians and surgeons of Illinois, and who has been long and honorably connected with the professional and industrial interests of Douglas County, was born in Fairfield County, Ohio, January 26, 1824. The Reat ancestors are traced back to Scotland, where the name was pronounced in two syllables, with the accent on the last. Two brothers emigrated to this country during the war of the Revolution, one of whom espoused the cause of the rebels, the term by which the patriot colonies were then known, and served through that struggle with Washington’s forces. The other brother sided with the Tories, in consequence of which the two brothers became alienated and a total separation occurred between the two branches of the family. Dr. Reat is descended from the one who cast his fortunes with those of the patriots and who, after the war, settled in Frederick Town, Maryland. At this place James Reat (father) was born and subsequently found his way to Ohio, where he married Susanna Rogers, a Virginia lady, and with her settled in Fairfield County, Ohio. When our subject was five years old, his parents removed to Coles County, Illinois, where the father purchased a farm on which they resided for a time, then removed to Charleston and lived there up to the time of his death, in...

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Biography of Frank F. Loose

Frank F. Loose, one of the leading farmers and business men of the county, residing upon his farm in the north suburb of Tuscola, was born in the city of Springfield, Illinois, in the year 1859. He was reared on the farm and was educated in Springfield. his father’s farm lying just south of the city. His father, Jacob G. Loose, was born in Franklin county, Pennsylvania, just across from the Maryland line. He sank the first shaft in the vicinity of Springfield, on his own farm, mortgaging almost everything he had to accomplish this, and his venture was richly rewarded by finding a paying vein of coal. He became quite well to do, and died on his farm in 1874. Mary Elizabeth (Iles) Loose, his mother, was a native of Kentucky, and a daughter of Washington Iles, who was a stock buyer and who was born in Kentucky and emigrated to Springfield, Illinois, where he lived until his death. Frank E. Loose located in Douglas county in about 188o, and on September 3, 1879, he married Miss Fannie, the only daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. John M. Madison (see sketch). She died June 25, 1897. She was born in Tuscola, and was nearly thirty-five years old at her death. At the age of fifteen she united with the Christian church of Tuscola, in which denomination she...

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Biography of Abraham Lincoln Barner

Some of the most substantial people of Kansas today, well able to ride about over the improved highways in their automobiles, came into the state in the early days with the slow and tedious method of the prairie schooner or the mover’s wagon. Such an emigrant party arrived in Sumner County in 1873. They had come overland from Central Illinois, being twenty-six days on route. Three wagons comprised the train, and the driver of one of those wagons, then thirteen years of age, was Abrabam Lincoln Barner, who is now living retired at Belle Plaine in Sumner County, and for years had been prominently known as a farmer, stockman, land owner, banker and closely identified with many of the business and civic affairs of his home section. The head of the family at that time was his father, Michael Barner. Michael Barner had come out to Sumner County in the spring of 1873, with two other men, and they bought three-quarter seetions, two for $800 each and another for $850. One of these quarters had an unfinished house on it, but one of the familiar Kansas winds of that day soon blew it away. When Michael Barner brought his family out he bought 160 acres near one of the three quarter sections previously mentioned, paying $1,000 for it. Its chief improvement was a log cabin, and that old building...

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Biography of Edward Everett Wall

Edward Everett Wall, water commissioner of St. Louis, who has ever met the requirements of his public position in an eminently satisfactory way, was born at Cambridge, Saline county, Missouri, August 15, 1860, and is a son of John and Mary (Gault) Wall. The father, born in 1819, went to Saline county, Missouri, in 1833, his father there entering three hundred and twenty acres of land, a greater portion of which constitutes the farm now occupied by two of the sons of John Wall. As a member of Doniphan’s regiment John Wall served through the Mexican war and afterward crossed the plains to California with the Argonauts of 1849, returning home in 1851. He then followed commercial pursuits until the Civil war when he volunteered as a private in a Missouri regiment and defended the Union cause throughout the period of hostilities between the north and the south, being promoted to the rank of lieutenant and later brevetted captain. Following his return home he served for four years as sheriff of Saline county and resumed commercial pursuits, which he followed until 1878, when he took up his abode on the farm which his father had entered from the government in 1833. He died in 1912, at the age of more than ninety-three years, with mental faculties unimpaired, his general health being good until the last year of his life....

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Biography of Francis Merriman Barnes, Jr., M. D.

Dr. Francis Merriman Barnes, Jr., a graduate of the Johns Hopkins University and prominently known as a neuropsychiatrist of St. Louis, was born in Middletown, New York, August 20, 1881, a son of Francis Merriman and Mary Drusilla (Reynolds) Barnes. The father, a native of Pennsylvania and a representative of one of the old families of that state of English lineage, is now a successful dentist. He was graduated from the Baltimore Dental College and is in active practice in Middletown, New York. His wife, a native of the Empire state, passed away in 1884. In their family were four sons. In the maternal line Dr. Barnes of this review can trace his ancestry back to 944 A. D., to Grethferth the Dane, king of Northumberland, who was driven from England and took refuge in Normandy. One of his descendants, Reynolds Fitz Reynolds, later returned with William the Conqueror in 1066 and there are records of the family in England and Scotland through a number of generations. In 1634 John Reynolds emigrated from Ipswich, England, to Boston, Massachusetts, and in 1635, in Watertown, was made a freeman. From this early record the family is traced down to the present time. Dr. Francis M. Barnes, Jr., the youngest member of his father’s household, attended the public and high schools of his native city and also the Delaware Literary Academy at...

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Biography of Arren Bray

ARREN BRAY. Among the families who have been residents of Christian County since 1840 we are pleased to name the one represented by our subject. Mark Bray, the father of our subject, brought his family to this county from North Carolina in 1840 and became one of the wealthy and influential citizens of the county. Arren Braly was born in the Old North State November 15, 1835, and was fifth in order of birth of nine children. He was but five years of age when his parents came to Missouri and he attended the first school in this part of the county, it being on a part of his father’s farm. When twenty-one years of age he started out to farm for himself, but later began working in his father’s mill at Linden, where he remained for about nine years. In the year 1858 he married Miss Ann Wrightman, daughter of Joseph and Keziah (Beckner) Wrightman, natives of Virginia. Her parents moved to Illinois and resided there until 1856, when they came to Christian County, Missouri, and located near Linden, on a farm where they remained a number of years. Mr. Wrightman was drowned in 1883, when seventy-two years of age. For many years he was a worthy member of the Baptist Church. The mother died in 1863. They were the parents of eleven children, as follows: Sarah, deceased,...

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Biography of John A. Chapin

JOHN A. CHAPIN. The calling of the farmer is the primitive occupation of man, and the majority of those who have followed it have led upright and blameless lives, and the career of John A. Chapin is no exception to this rule. He is a native of Sangamon County, Illinois, where he first saw the light in 1829, a son of Paul Stillman and Sarah (Harrison) Chapin, natives of the Old North State, the birth of the father occurring in 1799. They accompanied their parents to Overton County, Tennessee, and were there married, and afterward lived for about three years in Illinois. At the end of that time they returned to Tennessee and there Mr. Chapin followed farming until his death, which occurred in 1843. His father, Paul Chapin, was a Massachusetts man and when but sixteen years old was a soldier of the Revolution and in an engagement during that war was wounded in the right arm. He removed to North Carolina when a young man, was married there and later removed, in a very early day, to Overton County, Tennessee, where he was called from life in 1845. He was married several times and his first wife was the grandmother of the subject of this sketch, by whom he had two sons and one daughter: Paul S.; Hiram, who lived in Sangamon County, Illinois, and Mary (Moore),...

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Biography of Charles B. Johnson, M. D.

Charles B. Johnson, M. D. Valuable work in his profession and an unusual variety of experience contribute to make the career of Dr. C. B. Johnson one of note in Champaign County, where he has lived for the past forty-six years. Doctor Johnson is a veteran Union soldier, is grandson of a Revolutionary soldier, and’ during the half century since he came out of the Northern army he has been in the active practice of medicine and is still a competent member of his profession and one of Champaign County’s most useful citizens. Doctor Johnson was born at Pocahontas in Bond County, Illinois, October 8, 1843. His grandfather, Charles Johnson, was a native of North Carolina, and went with the troops of that state to battle against the British armies and the Tories in the times of the struggle for independence. Doctor Johnson’s father was James Johnson, an early settler in Illinois and a farmer. In 1849 he went out to California when that was the mecca of gold seekers and adventurers from all parts of the world, and he died soon after his arrival on the gold coast. James Johnson married Elizabeth Jane Volentine. Doctor Johnson spent his early life on a farm, attended the public schools, and early showed a tendency and desire for studious pursuits. On August 7, 1862, he enlisted in Company F of the...

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Biography of John Russell Stewart

John Russell Stewart. As a citizen who for many years was closely identified with journalism and local affairs in Champaign County, the people of this section feel a corresponding interest in the personality and career of John Russell Stewart. As supervising editor of this publication, the publishers feel that this interest should be gratified by the inclusion of a brief personal biography. He was born on his father’s farm in Butler County, Pennsylvania, November 6, 1840, a son of William and Eliza Jane (Gibson) Stewart, who were both of direct Scotch-Irish descent. Mr. Stewart received his education in the local public schools and private academies, grew up on his father’s farm, and at the age of eighteen qualified for work as a teacher and was in the schoolroom in that capacity for four terms. Coming west in 1863, he found work in the public schools of Scott County, Iowa. In the same year he had volunteered his services to the Union army in the Civil War, but was rejected on account of defective eyesight. After four years in Scott County, Iowa, he moved to Tama County, and became superintendent of schools at Toledo, the county seat. In 1868, he was elected superintendent of the Tama County public schools and filled that office until the time of the Chicago fire in 1871. As early as 1860 Mr. Stewart became deeply...

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Biography of Abraham Graham

Abraham Graham. The quiet life and substantial accomplishments of the farmer have been the lot of Abraham Graham, who is now living in the town of Penfield, retired from the strenuous labors which marked his early youth. Mr. Graham has been identified with Champaign County almost half a century, and his life record is one that will be read with pleasure by his many friends and acquaintances as well as by his family. He long ago accumulated sufficient to protect him against the days that are to come, and the respect in which he is held is no less than his material accomplishment. Mr. Graham is a native of the Emerald Isle, born in County Monaghan, December 27, 1838, a son of Hugh and Sarah (McMahon) Graham. He was the third of nine children, six sons and three daughters. He acquired an education in his native country and at the age of nineteen determined to take advantage of the wonderful opportunities of America. Accompanied by a cousin, Miss Rosa Martin, he sailed on the ship Aurora and five weeks and three days later arrived at Castle Garden, New York. From there he went to Providence, Rhode Island, and for nine months during the panic of 1857 worked in lumber yards. He then became a farmer at Glencove in Queen’s County on Long Island, but three years later came west...

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Biography of Roger E. Zombro

Roger E. Zombro is one of the live and enterprising business men of Champaign, and after a number of years of practical experience as an employee graduated into the ranks of independent merchants and now conducts one of the most popular men’s furnishing goods stores of the city, drawing his trade from the best classes of people. Mr. Zombro was born at Midland City, Illinois, October 16, 1880, a son of Jacob W. and Mary M. (Cheney) Zombro. His parents were both born at Mechanicsburg, Ohio. Jacob Zombro spent the last twenty years of his life in the insurance business, and he died at Weldon, Illinois. The mother died at Champaign in July, 1916. They were the parents of five children: Minnie, wife of B. F. Peltz, of Clinton, Illinois; James B., of Logan, Utah; Janette, wife of J: H. Alsbury, of Maroa, Illinois; Edna, wife of George Reddick, of Clinton, Illinois; and Roger E. Mr. Roger E. Zombro began life with a fair equipment of education. He attended the common schools and lacked only three months of graduating from the high school at Weldon, Illinois. On account of poor eyesight he had to give up his studies, and soon afterward at the age of fifteen, he began acquiring a mercantile experience as an employee of William Gushard & Company at Decatur, Illinois. He was in that company’s dry...

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Biography of William O. Smith

William O. Smith. For more than half a century a resident of Champaign County, William O. Smith is known to the people of this section as a man who did his brave and efficient duty in the Civil W T ar, as an active and industrious farmer, and as one who in all the relations of a long and busy life has lived up to the best standards of citizenship. He is also known through his children, a number of whom now occupy worthy and honorable places in community affairs. Mr. Smith was born at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, January 5, 1839, a son of S. B. and Mary Ellen (Sheperd) Smith. His father’s native home was near Harper’s Ferry, Virginia. William O. Smith was one of a family of five sons and two daughters. In 1846, when he was seven years of age, the family removed to Sangamon County, Illinois, and rented a house in Sheldon’s Row in the city of Springfield. For two years they had the distinction of living in the same house with Abraham Lincoln and his wife. The house was a double apartment, the Smiths occupying one side and the Lincolns the other. S. B. Smith served eighteen years as justice of the peace in Sangamon County. Mr. W. O. Smith as a boy attended the Lake Creek District School in Sangamon County. After leaving the...

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Biography of John D. Burton

John D. Burton. Like many of his contemporaries in the field of journalism in Southeastern Kansas, John D. Burton, proprietor and editor of the Potwin Ledger, began his career at the case. His entire life had been devoted to newspaper work, as compositor, editor and owner of publications in various parts of the country, but principally in Kansas, where he had resided and labored since the fall of 1878. While his present publication was founded only recently, it had already gained a wide circulation and promises to become an organ of influence in public matters under Mr. Burton’s wise and experienced direction. John D. Burton was born at Springfield, Illinois, July 1, 1857, and is a son of David A. and Elizabeth (Tarr) Burton. He comes of a family which, originating in England, was founded in North Carolina by three brothers, William, Thomas and Allen Burton, the last named of whom, his great-grandfather, became a pioneer farmer of Indiana and died in the vicinity of Terre Haute. Allen H. Burton, son of the immigrant, and grandfather of John D. Burton, was born at Charlotte Court House, North Carolina, and was there reared, educated and married. Subsequently he went to Indiana, but later became a pioneer into Williamson County, Illinois, where he condueted a blacksmith shop until his death. He married Cynthia Boyle, a native of Ireland. David A. Burton, father of John D., was...

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