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From History of Greene and Jersey Counties, Illinois, Springfield, IL: Continental Historical Co., 1885, pp. 337 – 365. There will be typographical errors.
There are no towns within its borders. The Jersey county poor farm is on section 16 in this township.
In 1817 a party of landseekers came through this part of the county looking for a home, and on the 10th of June 1817, two of their number, David Stockton and James Whitesides, made a settlement in what is now English township, on section 25. Stockton remained but a short time, but Whitesides made two different improvements, which he sold in 1821, and then removed to Morgan county.
Thomas Lynn located on section 23 in what is now English township during the year 1817. In 1822 he sold out to Philip Grimes and removed from the township, going to a point on Coon creek in Rosedale township, about a quarter of a mile from the present Rosedale postoffice. He and his brothers, Amos and Thomas, were chair-makers, and with the rudest machinery imaginable, they could turn out an excellent chair in a very short time.
Philip Grimes came to Jersey county in 1817, and erected a cabin on section 2 in English township. In the spring of 1818 he moved his family into this house, where they lived until 1822, when he purchased the improvement of Thomas Lynn. His son, Jarrett T. Grimes in now a resident of Jersey township. Philip Grimes was a native of the state of Tennessee, and served under Gen. Andrew Jackson at the battle of New Orleans. In 1815 he came to Illinois. He was an active, industrious man, of excellent habits and much respected. He died in 1851.
James Pruitt located on section 24, English township in 1824. He bought the improvement of John Thornton. He sold out to James T. Post in 1834, and removed to a place on Phill’s creek, in Fidelity township, where he resided until his death. He was the father of Amos and another son, who went to Arkansas.
John Crain, a native of North Carolina, came to Illinois from Harrison county, Tenn. in 1811, and settled in St. Clair county. He was married while in Tennessee to Heriba Rumney in 1806. They remained in the last-mentioned locality until 1819, when they came to this county and township, settleing on section 10. This was their residence until October 1845, when he and his wife emigrated to Texas, where he died in 1855 and his wife in 1867. Crain was a plain-spoken man, somewhat rude in his manners in his early life, especially when he was drinking, but was a substantial citizen. In his later years he became of a religious turn, and thence forward was a devoted member of the church. His son, Joel, became a minister of the Gospel in Texas, but is now deceased. John Crain had three sons: Joel, James L., and Silas, and two daughters.
Major Gershom Patterson made a settlement in this township in 1820. He was a native of Kentucky, born in 1796. His parents moved to Illinois in 1797. He was married in 1819 to Eleanor Cooper, by whom he had five children. In March 1820 he removed to Jersey county, and on the 5th of January 1821 entered a body of land in this township, and immediately started to improve it. He was a captain in the Black Hawk war, and was afterwards commissioned major in the militia. Mrs. Patterson died Nov. 10, 1853, and on the 24th of Jan. 1856, the major again married, this time to Mrs. Mary Mabee. At the tiem of his death, which occurred Jan. 10, 1857, he owned 1,800 acres of land. He was a prominent and influential member of the Protestant Methodist church, and became a local preacher. He was a prominent figure in his day, and a successful farmer.
John Thornton came to this locality as early as 1820, and liking the looks of the country, on the 5th of Jan. 1821 entered 280 acres of land, lying on section 23 of this township. Here he made his home until 1824, when it was purchased by Mathew Darr, and then he removed to Richwoods township, west of the village of Fieldon, where he passed the balance of his life.
John Brown came to the county of Jersey in 1820, and on the 19th of January 1821 entered a tract of 80 acres of land in this township and settled on it. Six months later he entered an additional 80 acres. Both of these pieces were on section 25. He was a native of South Carolina, born in Pendleton county in 1790. His father removed with his family to Georgia, and in 1802 to the French territory of Louisiana. In 1813 John volunteered in the United States Rangers and served until the close of the war. He died while a resident of the county about 1873.
Jehu Brown, a native of South Carolina, came to this county about the year 1820, from Florissant, Mo., and being in affluent circumstances, rode down to Edwardsville, and on the 5th of January 1821, at the land office there, entered some 800 acres of land, lying on sections 1 and 2 of this township. Philip Grimes had part of this land under cultivation, but Brown paid him $300 for his improvements, and he vacated. Brown served as probate judge of Greene county, and was well known as Judge Brown. He died here in 1835.
Abiram McKinney came to English township in the fall of 1821, although he had come to the county a year earlier. He entered the southeast quarter of section 23 of this township in October 1821, and resided there until the following year, when he removed to section 24, this same township. He was a native of the state of Virginia. In 1818 he came to Illinois, and made a temporary sojourn in Madison county, when he came here as above state. He died while a resident of this county in April 1840. He was the father of James, Joseph, Ann, Mrs. James Rowden, and Jacob, all of whom are deceased except Mrs. Rowden.
Silas Crain made a settlement in this township during the year 1821. He entered 160 acres of land on section 15, on the 21st of January of that year, and commenced to open it up.
Silas Crain, Sr. was the father of John, James B. and Silas Crain, Jr. The wife of William Adair was another child of Silas Crain, Sr. Thomas Roberts’ wife was another daughter, as is Mrs. Hester Vaughn. Silas Crain, Sr. was a well known and much respected gentleman, and lived to the age of nearly 100 years. He died about 1844 or 1845. He is buried in the Lax cemetery. He settled on the northeast quarter of section 15.
Francis Colean came to English township in 1822, and on the 2nd of April, entered the west half of the southwest quarter of Sec. 13, in this township. He commenced to open it up and make a farm. Mr. Colean was of French and English descent, and was born at Cahokia, then in the territory of Illinois, July 15, 1794. He was a soldier in the war of 1812-15, and was with General Jackson at the battle of New Orleans, Jan. 8, 1815, where he was slightly wounded. He was married in 1814 to Polly Cox. After the war he settled on the American Bottom, where he resided until coming to this county. On the breaking out of the Black Hawk war he enlisted and took part in several campaigns of that early contest. A man of great energy and determination of character, he enjoyed the respect and esteem of all who knew him. He died at his residence, Nov. 19, 1846. He is buried, with his wife, in the old Jerseyville cemetery.
Nelson Colean, deceased, formerly a leading farmer of Jersey county, was born March 7, 1822, a son of Francis Colean. Nov. 11, 1847 he was united in marriage with Sarah J. Waddle. They were the parents of six children: Sarah E., William N., Charles H., James R., Mary E. and John E. Of these, only three are now living: Sarah E., James R. and Mary E. Nelson Colean died Aug. 9, 1880, aged 58 years. He was a successful farmer, and on account of his sterling qualities, was highly esteemed in the community where he resided. He was a consistent member of the Baptist church. Mr. Colean had been for 15 years prior to his decease, retired from active business.
Among the early settlers of 1823 was John Vaughn, who located on section 14, English township. He was quite a prominent man in the county, well known for his energy and enterprise. He was married to Hester Crain, a daughter of Silas Crain, Sr. They raised a family of 13 children, now nearly all deceased. Mrs. Vaughn is now living with members of her family. A son, Erastus, lives near Girard, Macoupin county, and a daughter-in-law lives near Litchfield, Montgomery county. Mr. Vaughn died at the old homestead and is buried in Lax cemetery. He was an active member of the Baptist church.
Mathew Darr came west in 1801, and stopped at St. Louis. He afterwards came to Illinois and settled in Madison county, where he was married. He was born in 1785. He came to the county in 1822, but settled at first in Richwoods township, but in 1824 came to English township, purchasing the John Thornton place. He was a very successful farmer, and it is said that from his farm he was on of the first that had an over-plus of provisions to sell to new and needy settlers. He was the father of 16 children, and a consistent member of the Baptist church. In 1853, he was called to his long home, and left a large circle of mourning friends. He was attached to the milling trade, and built two mills on Sugar creek. He also erected a horse-power mill in his yard.
In 1827 Lewis Elliott, Sr. settled in what is known as the Lynn Bottom, in English township. He remained there one year, and then removed to Macoupin county, near the present site of Medora. From there he removed to Choteau’s Island, Madison county, and then to Ruyle township, this county, in 1848.
In the fall of 1829 Samuel Erwin came to what is now Jersey county and located on Macoupin creek. Samuel Erwin, an old settler of this county, and a prominent citizen of English township, was born in Wilson county, Tenn. June 19, 1811, his parents were Samuel and Agnes (Wear) Erwin. The former is a native of South Carolina, the latter of Scotland. His early life was spent on a farm, where he remained until 24 years old with his parents. In 1828 the family came to Illinois and located in Jefferson county, where they remained two years, then came to this county (then Greene) and located on Macoupin creek. There he remained seven years. Mr. Erwin was among the pioneers of the state, and effected a settlement where everything was in a state of natual wildness, and endured the privations incident to such a life with a fortitude and determination known to but few persons. He was married April 6, 1836 to Susanna Brown, a native of St. Louis county, Mo. They are the parents of eight children, six of whom are now living: Thomas J., Lucy V., Laura, James M., Mary E. and Douglas. Those deceased were William H. and Hannah. His wife died May 24, 1879 and was buried in Lebanon cemetery. Mr. Erwin has 200 acres of land. He has for 30 years been a member of the Lebanon Baptist church.
J. D. Erwin is a Jersey county man, having been born here Aug. 3, 1853, his parents being Samuel and Susanna (Brown) Erwin. The former is a native of Tennessee and the latter of Missouri. The subject of this sketch was brought up on a farm and has always been at home with his parents. His education was obtained in this county, at the Jerseyville schools, two years, and afterwards this instruction was supplemented by a two year’s course at Shurtleff college, Upper Alton. He was married Oct. 23, 1879 to Rhoda Rowden, daughter of James and Elizabeth Rowden. They are the parent of three children: Jessie, Louie and Susie. Mr. Erwin is a member of the Lebanon Baptist church. He cultivates 200 acres of land on section 14, is a good farmer and an enterprising young man.
James Rusk came to what is now English township in 1829. He was born in South Carolina.
Hugh Rusk, deceased, son of James and Priscilla (McDow) Rusk was of Irish descent and was born in North Carolina, March 15, 1816. When 8 years of age he came with his parents to Illinois, and located in what is now English township, where the greater portion of his life was spent. He followed the occupation of farming, having had a farm of 203 acres left him from his father’s estate. He was married to Ellen Barr, Feb. 14, 1841. Five children were born to this union, of whom tow are living, John W. and Thomas J. Those dead are: Nancy E., wife of L. N. Bridges; Mary P.; and Julia A., wife of J. Arter. Mrs. Rusk died in May 1851. In Jan 1853 Mr. Rusk was again married to Martha Crain, daughter of Silas and Rhoda Crain. They had eight children born to them, four of whom are dead: James E., born Feb. 23, 1854, died in Oct. 1856; Silas H., born March 3, 1855, died in Oct. 1856; Zachariah, born in Dec. 1861, died in Nov. 1863; Charlotte J., wife of J. Roberts, born Nov. 24, 1856, died May 30, 1875. Those living are: Emily C., born April 9, 1860; Ellen D., born May 10, 1863; Minnie N., and Francis O. They also brought up Charles H. Bridges, whom they adopted. Mr. Rusk’s death occurred on the 1st day of Dec. 1881. He was a kind and indulgent husband and father, and upright, honest man, and a good citizen. His loss was deeply felt by his family and by all who knew him. Mrs. Rusk now owns 80 acres on section 18, where she resides.
Moses Martin, a native of North Carolina, came to English township in the early part of 1829, and settled on Sec. 26, where he lived for some time when he moved to Sec. 30 where he died. The latter event occurred in 1840. He is buried on the farm he lived on, on the ‘Black Oak’ mound, south of the Catholic church. He was known as one of the best citizens, and was much respected. He was a member of the Methodist church. He was twice married. His last wife was a Mrs. Beatty, of Cincinnati. His son, but his first marriage, named George, is now living west of Jerseyville, in English township.
George Martin, a respected citizen of English township, was born in St. Louis county, Mo., Dec. 5, 1819, a son of Moses and Elizabeth (Carrico) Martin, the former a native of North Carolina who died in 1840, the latter a native of Kentucky. In 1824, the family moved to what is now Jersey county, where George was reared on a farm where he remained until he attained his majority. He followed milling at Barnett’s mill four years, then enlisted in the Mexican war and served one year, participating in the hard fought battle of Buena Vista. He returned from the army in 1847, locating then on Sec. 35, English township, Jersey county, where he had purchased 40 acres of land. This land was heavily timbered and he immediately set about clearing it. He now owns 100 acres on Secs. 35 and 26, which is all cleared and in a high state of cultivation. Mr. Martin was married Aug. 15, 1839 to Hannah Biggers, by whom he had four children, only one of whom is now living, Gilbert. Leonard was killed while serving his country, and Moses died in infancy. Mrs. Martin died Jan. 2, 1847, aged 23 years. Dec. 31 of the same year, Mr. Martin was married to Permelia Hinson Beggs, and by this marriage has five children: Letha J., born Oct. 2, 1848, now the wife of Henry Dabbs, of English township; Vincent M., born Dec. 11, 1852; Mary, born Feb. 23, 1855; Almenia, born in 1860, now the wife of George E. Henson of Otter Creek township; and Elizabeth, born May 1, 1862. Mr. Martin has worked hard for what he possesses and is now enjoying the results of his past labor.
Ezekiel Chance made a settlement within the limits of Jersey county in the fall of 1829. He was born in Wayne county, N.C., Dec. 10, 1798. In 1804 his father moved to Virginia. Ezekiel moved to Wayne county, Ky., in 1816, where about two years afterwards he was married to Mrs. Ruth Stuart nee Peters. In 1828, his wife dying, he disposed of his property in Kentucky and came to Illinois, locating in Madison county, where he remained one year, then came here and located on section 13, Otter Creek township. In 1831 he settled on a farm on section 28, this township. In Dec. 1831 he was married to Elizabeth, daughter of Philip and Polly Grimes. They had three children, all now deceased. He is now numbered with the dead. He was buried on the old homestead at his own request.
John Cope also settled in this township in 1829. He remained at that location until 1846, when he removed within the present corporation limits of Jerseyville, where he died in 1850. He was a Pennsylvanian by birth. He was a quiet citizen.
Among the settlers of the year 1830 in this locality was Uriel Crain, who located on a farm on section 15. He lived on the southeast quarter of that section until about 1835, when he died.
There was a store at what is called the Black Oak Mound in 1834. George Smith ran it. He had been here some time before starting the store. He ran this place a few years until the town of Saulsbury was started, in the western part of the county, when he removed his stock over there. He remained there several years, and then went to the Platte Purchase, near St. Joseph, Mo., where he still engaged in merchandising, and became very wealthy. He died a few years ago.
The first school in what is now English township was taught by Galen McKinney, in a little log house on section 23 in about 1823. Among the first scholars were: J. T. Grimes; James, Philip, Eleanor and Amanda Darr; Hester, Elizabeth and Lucinda Grimes; a daughter and son of Harmon Hatfield; Harrison and Eliza Colean; and Nathaniel Darneille. Galen McKinney, the teacher, went back to Tennesse, whence he had come.
The first frame school building in district No. 1 was erected in 1850 by John Cowen & Son. The present school house was built in 1864. It is 20 x 28 feet in ground area. The average attendance is about 17. The district embraces sections 11, 12, 13, 14, and the southeast quarter of section 10.
The school building at present used in district No. 2 was erected in 1879 at a cost of $550. It is 24 x 26 feet in size. The first teacher in this building was Jacob Tuscher. William Myers is the present pedagogue. The average attendance is about 22. This district embraces the west halves of sections 5 and 8, and all of sectons 6, 7, 17, 18, 19, 20. The first school house in this district was built of logs, and was called the Armstrong school house. It was built about 1832, on the southwest quarter of section 20. The ruins of that early building are still on the site. Its use was discontinued about 1849. School was then held in a small house on Thomas Roberts; farm, on the northeast quarter of section 20. About two years later, a building was erected on the northeast quarter of section 8. This served until the present building was constructed.
District No. 3 embraces sections 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33. The school building is located on the northwest quarter of section 32. The first building was a log house, built around 1840, a little to the south of the present edifice. Among the first interested in this school were the families of Christopher and John Kirchner, F. Heitzig, a potter, and others. The present building was constructed about 1860.
Included in district No. 4, are all of the sections 4 and 9, the west half and a part of the east half of section 3, east of sections 5 and 8, and the west half of the northeast quarter of section 10.
District No. 5 embraces all of the south half, the northeast quarter and a part of the northwest quarter of section 23, the west half of 24, all of 25, 26, 27, 34, and the north half of 35 and 36. The first school in this district was held in a log house on the southeast quarter of section 25. John Sloan taught the first school here, about 1830. The next teacher was Thomas Richardson. A log school house was built on the southeast quarter of section 25. Thomas Richardson was the first teacher there. School was kept there until 1860, when a log building was erected on the northwest quarter of section 36. In 1869 a building was erected on the northeast quarter of section 26, which has since been remodeled and forms the present school house.
The present school house in district No. 6 was erected in 1852, at a cost of about $300. Piatt Schaffer was the contractor. The building is 18 x 24 feet in ground dimensions. An average attendance of 30 scholars is kept by this school. The district embraces all of sections 15, 16, 21, 22, and a portion of the northwest quarter of 23.
District No. 7 had its first school building in 1856. It is 16 x 22 feet in size, and was constructed by Jesse White, at a cost of about $300. Its average attendance is 15 pupils. Included in this district are sections 1 and 2, and a part of 3.
District No. 8 embraces the south half of sections 35 and 36.
The first person buried in the Salem cemetery was James McGee, who died in the year 1854.
In the Lax cemetery an interment was made in 1830, being the body of Silas Crain, Sr.
Brown’s cemetery was laid out by John Brown. It was for a time a private cemetery, used by the family. Mr. Brown afterwards deeded it to the county. One of his children was the first person buried there.
Grimes’ cemetery is the name of another burying place in English township. A member of the Grimes family, a child, was the first one buried in this cemetery. That was in the year 1828. This cemetery is on section 23.
St. Mary’s cemetery is the burying ground connected with the Catholic church of the same name in English township.
The first white child born in what is now English township was J. T. Grimes, commonly known as ‘Tram’ Grimes. He was born January 1820, and his father was Philip Grimes one of the early settlers.
The pioneer school of this township was taught by Galen McKinney.
Rev. Jacob Rhodes, a Baptist divine preached the first sermon.
The first justice of the peace was Calvin Pegee.
The building of the Lebanon Baptist church was erected in 1850. The first minister was Rev. Jacob Rhodes.
St. Mary’s Catholic church is located on section 30.
Rev. Frank J. Reinhart, pastor of St. Mary’s church (Catholic), near Fieldon, was born in Germany, April 20, 1834. He is the son of Lawrence and Frances Reinhart, also natives of Germany. Father Reinhart was reared in his native country and received a liberal education, becoming fitted for a priest. He began his life work in the old country, where he remained until 1864. In that year he immigrated to the United States. Landing at New York he proceeded westward to Alton, and then to Quincy, where he had charge of the German Catholic church about 15 years. He now makes his home at Fieldon.
Lloyd T. English, a farmer of English township, is a native of this county, and was born March 8, 1848, being a son of John N. Sr., and Elizabeth (Belt) English. The former is a native of Kentucky, the latter of Illinois. The subject of this sketch was brought up on a farm, spending his youth in the various duties incident to such life, and in attending the common schools of the county, where he was mostly educated. He was married April 3, 1873, to Sarah E. Goodman, daughter of David and Rebecca Goodman. They are the parents of two children, Lizzie and Robert C. His wife died Feb 15, 1883. Mr. English owns 280 acres of land, all of which is under cultivation. His place is well improved and bears evidence of the thrift and enterprise of its owner. He takes a commendable interest in public affairs, and has been highway commissioner and is supervisor.
Horatio N. Belt, Sr. was born in Maryland in 1796, his father being Francis Thomas Belt. When H. N. was but a child, his parents removed to Bedford county, Va., where our subject was principally reared. When 19 years of age, he entered the service of the United States in the last war with Great Britain, and served under Jackson in that war. He returned to Virginia from the army, and shortly afterwards the family removed to the state of Tennessee. H. N. was married while in that state to Miss Anderson. By that marriage there were two children: Francis T., who adopted steamboating as a profession, and ran the first flatboat on the Illinois river, and was blown up on the steamboat Saluda at Lexington, Mo. with 300 others, he being captain of the boat. His remains were sent home and buried in Lax cemetery, with his wife, where his son George erected a handsome monument over their remains. The other child died in infancy. From Tennessee the family moved to Illinois, locating near Troy, Madison county, where the father of H. N. died. Then H. N., with his family, removed to St. Louis in Aug. 1831. Then he removed to Calhoun county in Aug. 1833. In Sept. 1833 he bought an improvement in Jersey county on section 22, Rosedale township. There he remained until 1835, when he removed to section 15, English township, where he remained until 1854, when he removed to Fieldon, where he lived until his death, Jan. 8, 1870. His second wife yet survives him. Her name was Mary J. West. She was also a native of Virginia. They were married in St. Clair county in the spring of 1821. By this marriage there were 11 children: Elizabeth N., wife of J. N. English; Lloyd T., living in New Orleans, steam boating; John H., subject of a following sketch; Wm. Anderson, deceased; Mary Jane, deceased; Vinson W., deceased, onw of the firm of Belt & Bro., builders of the Union mill, in Fieldon, he died in 1854, and is buried at Salem cemetery; James H., ex-sheriff of the county, now living in Bunker Hill; Martha Frances, deceased; H. N. Belt, Jr., now a banker in Bunker Hill, Ill.; George W., deceased in infancy; Virginia, wife of C. S. Olney, merchant of Fieldon. H. N. Belt, Sr. is buried at the Salem cemetery, on section 16, English township, on the farm of John H. Belt.
John H. Belt, one of the early settlers of the county, and a prominent citizen, was born in Madison county, Ill., March 10, 1827, his parents were Horation N. and Mary (West) Belt, born of whom were native Virginians. The former died Jan. 8, 1870 at his residence in Fieldon, and his mother yet lives at that place at the advanced age of 80 years. John H. was reared on a farm, and worked for his father until 19 years old. He then went to Calhoun county, and was there engaged in agricultural pursuits three years, then moved back to this county, where he purchased 160 acres of land, and lived on the same. In 1854 he moved to Fieldon, and built the Eugenie flouring mill. In 1864 he moved back to his farm, bought 240 acres more of land, which has since been his home. Soon after moving back he completed a fine two-story residence of brick construction, 22 x 44 with an L 18 x 32, having all the modern improvements, including a McPherson wrought iron furnace, heating the house by steam. He has a beautiful home, and is now in the enjoyment of a competency fairly won. He was married, Oct. 10, 1847, while a resident of Calhoun county, to Matilda Bramlett, of Jersey county, daughter of Elkana and Sarah (Lofton) Bramlett. Her father was a native of Virginia, and her mother of Kentucky. They are the parents of eight children, six of whom are living: William O., Walter S., Floyd T., Helena M., George W. and John H. Those deceased were: Helena, who died April 12, 1856, and Isadora, who died Aug. 15, 1856. Mr. and Mrs. Belt are members of the Cumberland Presbyterian church at Fieldon, of which society he is the present pastor. He owns 400 acres of land, and has considerable property. Mrs. Belt’s mother, Sarah Bramlett, makes her home with them. She is now 82 years old, and has been a consistent member of the Cumberland Presbyterian church for 50 years. She has been afflicted with blindness about eight years. Mr. Belt’s father built one of the first houses at Jerseyville in 1834, one of the first store buildings, and the first blacksmith shop. He has thus witnessed the development of this county, and been an important factor in transforming it from a state of natural wildness to a desirable, well settled country, teeming with wealth and prosperity.
Joseph B. Schroeder was born in Portsmouth, N.H., Dec. 24, 1821. He is the second child of a family of four children of Charles H. and Hannah Schroeder, who were both natives of Pennsylvania, and of German and English descent. In 1838 Mr. S. removed with his family to St. Louis, and about 1845 his wife died in that city. He survived her death until 1847. Mr. Schroeder served in the war of 1812, and was for a considerable portion of the time clerk to the captain of the revenue cutter of the privateer service. His wife’s father, Dr. H. Y. Carter, was a surgeon in the army during the Revolutionary contest. Joseph B. was educated principally in the schools of Delaware county, Penna., where he laid the foundation of a knowledge of the rudiments of a common school education. When about 14 years of age he became an apprentice to learn the coach making trade. In the fall of 1840 he went to St. Louis, where he resided until Jan. 1841, after which he came to Illinois, landing at Grafton. After a stay in that place of a few days, he rode over to Otter Creek prairie, and there formed a partnership with William Montgomery in wagon making. This partnership lasted about nine months, when he carried on the business alone until 1844. On the 16th of May of that year, he was united in marriage to Priscilla Patterson, daughter of Maj. Gershom Patterson, and old resident of this county, who was born in Kentucky in 1796, and came with his parents to Illinois the year following. The settled in what was then called the New Design, at which place his father died. His mother was again married to William Dennis, who was killed by the Indians, thus leaving her with only the support of young Gershom. After he had grown to manhood, he went to Kentucky and brought back his cousin, Eleanor Cooper, to visit his mother, and in the year 1819 they were united in marriage. By this union he had five children, one of whom is yet living. In March 1820 he removed with his family to the present limits of Jersey county, and on the 5th of Jan. 1821, entered a body of land and immediately commenced to improve the same. On the breaking out of the Black Hawk war he enlisted, and was soon afterward elected captain. He proceeded with his men to join the army, stationed at Rock Island, and after the treaty was effected and the army disbanded, he returned to his farm. He was a short time after commissioned major of militia by the governor of Illinois. Maj. Patterson and wife were both members of the M.E. Church. He was a man of the old style of hospitality, genial and courteous to all. As a farmer he was successful, and at the time of his death owned about 1,800 acres of good land in Jersey and Montgomery counties. In politics he was a whig. Mrs. Patterson died at their home, Nov. 10, 1853, and on Jan. 24, 1856, the major married to Mrs. Mary Mabee. Mr. Patterson died Jan. 30, 1857, and his wife survived him until Jan. 20, 1870. Joseph B. Schroeder and wife have had five children, four of whom are yet living. Their eldest daughter Nellie is the wife of L. L. Hereford. After his marriage Mr. S. settled on the farm where he now resides, living in a rude log cabin which was almost surrounded by forest trees, and in that dreary solitude he commenced to clear a farm. Few men of our day would have the pluck to go out and encounter those hardships, but possessing industry and energy, he wa successful in the accomplishment of his designs. At the age of 16 Joseph became a member of the Methodist church, his wife being a member for many years also. Mr. Schroeder’s first vote for president was cast for Henry Clay, and after the whig party was disorganized he joined the ranks of the democracy, to which he has ever afterward strongly adhered. He is also a member of the Mystic tie. Quite a relic of the family is a set of candle sticks, snuffers and tray. They were handed down to Mr. Schroeder’s grandfather, who was almost 100 years of age at the time of his death, and from him on down the line of human progress, until the year 1845, they came into the possession of Mr. Schroeder, who is now residing on his farm, enjoying the fruits of a well-spent life.
John N. English, Jr. was born in Jersey county, Feb. 19, 1852, his parents being John N. and Elizabeth (Belt) English, the former a native of Kentucky and the latter of Illinois. He was brought up on a farm, and remined with his parents until 24 years of age. He was married Jan. 27, 1876 to Fannie D. Henderson. Mr. and Mrs. English are members of the Methodist Episcopal church at Jerseyville. He now owns 180 acres of land all under cultivation. He is an enterprising young man, takes a commendable interest in public affairs, and has been the township clerk for the past five years.
Hubert Sauer, an old and highly respected citizen of English township, was born in Germany, Dec. 27, 1807, his parents beng Mathias and Mary (Stickler) Sauer, also of Germany. Hubert grew to manhood in his native country, and there, in his youth, learned the carpenter’s trade. In December 1851, he bade farewell to his Fatherland, taking passage at Havre, on a ship bound for New Orleans. Landing in that city, he proceeded to St. Louis, then to Alton, coming soon after to Jersey county. In 1852 he bought 80 acres of land in English township on which he lived about a year, then sold, and purchased another 80 acres in the same township, which has since been his home. Mr. Sauer has been three times married, first in 1834 to Mary Ulillah, by whom he had four children: Hubert, Caroline, Magdaline and Mary U. Mrs. Sauer died in 1844, and Mr. Sauer was married to Tracy Mill, who died in 1875. By this union seven children were born: Joseph, married to Nettie Meisner, and now living in Montgomery county; August, Charles, Nettie, Edward, Frederick and George. Mr. Sauer was married the third time. He ha been an energetic and hard-working man, and is now in comfortable circumstance. He is a member of the Catholic church.
Peter Drainer was born in the city of Cologne, Germany, March 23, 1823, and is a son of Peter and Mary Drainer, natives of Germany. He grew to manhood in his native country, and was there married Jan. 12, 1852 to Ursula Pit, daughter of George Pit. In 1854 he decided to immigrate to America and took passage with his family on board of a sailing vessel at Antwerp, on the 13th of April. They landed in New Orleans, where they remained about a year, then went to St. Louis where he worked at brick mason work eight months. He had learned the mason’s trade, and followed the same in Germany previous to coming to this country. In the fall of 1855 he came to Jersey county and settled at Fieldon where he worked at his trade three years. At the expiration of that period he had succeeded in saving enough of his earning to buy a small farm, and accordingly purchased 80 acres of land on Sec. 19 of English township, to which he removed, and on which he has ever since resided. He has added to his real estate until he at present owns 240 acres. In 1871 he erected a commodious two-story fram dwelling, at a cost of $2,800. It is situated on a slight elevation of land, and everything about the premises indicates the thrift and enterprise of the owner. Mr. and Mr. Drainer have had six children born to them: Theresa Helene, now the wife of John Woke, of Fieldon; Mary Louisa, died in Germany; Peter, married to Anna Bunsy, and living in English township; Hugo, Peah Desideria and Germanny Prudenty. Mary died in Germany. Mr. Drainer and his family are members of the Catholic church. Mrs. Drainer died in 1869, and was laid to rest in St. Mary’s cemetery. Mr. Drainer is a democrat politically, and has held the office of school director for nine years.
John Hetzel, one of the most prosperous and influential of the German citizens of English township, was born May 23, 1826 in Germany, his parents being Conrad and Josephine (Schabel) Hetzel, also natives of Germany. In 1849 John Hetzel immigrated to the United States, taking passage on board a sailing vessel, the Graftstroom, at Rotterdam. He landed in New York, and from there went to Milwaukee, Wis. He had, previous to coming to America, learned the machinist’s trade, working upon locomotives and other machinery. He also did military service in that country two years. In 1855 he came to Jersey county and settled on Otter creek, where he remained one year, then removed to section 18, English township, where he purchase 40 acres of land. He now owns 320 acres in this section, which is mostly under cultivation. In 1881 he erected a handsome and commodious residence, costing $3,000. His other improvements are of a corresponding description, and everything about the place indicates thrift and prosperity. Mr. Hetzel was married in March 1851 to Henrietta Auspach, daughter of David and Mary (Reedy) Auspach. They are the parents of nine children: Josephine L., born Aug. 12, 1852; George F., born Sejpt. 4, 1855; August P., born Aug. 13, 1857; Mary E., born Sept. 18, 1861; Catherine E., born Oct. 12, 1861; William H., born Sept. 25, 1863; Antoinette H., born Feb. 20, 1868; Emily L., born March 21, 1870; and John E., born Feb. 6, 1873. Mr. Hetzel is politically a republican and has held the office of school director for some time.
Frederick Becker, deceased, son of John and Christiana (Tulla) Becker, was born in Germany, Jan. 24, 1837. He resided in his native country until 16 years of age, then in 1853 took passage at Bremen on board a ship bound for the port of New Orleans, United States of America. Soon after his arrival in that city he came up the river to St. Louis, and then to Jersey county. He remained here for a short time working at different places, then went to Upper Alton where he worked four years in a pottery. In 1857 he returned to Germany on a business trip, and while there was taken ill and obliged to remain for about one year. In 1858 he came back to Jersey county and worked for several years, laying by his earnings until he had a sum sufficient to purchase 80 acres of land, to which he then removed and which was his homeuntil his decease, June 2, 1879. His remains were laid to rest in St. Mary’s cemetery. He was married April 12, 1864 to Wilhelmina Tonsor, daughter of Frank and Mary (Reesey) Tonson. Seven children were born to them: Mary, John, Charles, Theodore, Joseph, Frank and Henry. Mrs. Becker and her family are members of the Catholic church. She has 200 acres of land and a pleasant residence desirably located.
Henry Brockmeyer was born in Germany, June 8, 1825, a son of John F. and Elizabeth (Groppel) Brockmeyer, natives of Germany, where the latter died in 1838 and the former in 1853. Henry immigrated to America the same year in which is father died, landing in New Orleans. He went from there to St. Louis, where he remained one year. In the fall of 1854, he came to Jersey county, and settled in Richwoods township, purchasing 40 acres of land, on which he resided 10 years. He then sold out and bought 40 acres in English township, where he has ever since resided. His farm is located on section 32, and is in good cultivation. It now contains 290 acres. Mr. Brockmeyer was married in Oct. 1854 to Ann M. Lechtermann, and by this union has six children: Mary, now the wife of Otha Kirchner, of English township; John, married to Caroline Hausholter, and living in Otterville; Henry, Ann, Louisa and Otilda. Mr. Brockmeyer and his family are members of the German Lutheran church.
S. G. Downey is a native of this county, and was born Sept. 24, 1835, his parents being Uriah and Mary (Griswold) Downey. He was brought up on a farm, remaining with his parents until their death. In 1874 he went to Denver, Col., for his health, where he remained about three months. He then returned to the old homestead, where he has since lived. Mr. Downey has been twice married, first to Charlotte Crane in 1870. By that union there were two children: Edwin and Pearl. His first wife died in 1874. He was again married in 1875 to Elizabeth J. Miller, daughter of Christopher Miller. By this union there are five children: Sylvester, James, Jessie, Rosetta, and an infant son not yet named. Mr. Downey owns 120 acres of land, all under cultivation, and is one of the most enterprising of English township’s citizen. Politically, he adheres to the Republican party, and is a member of the A. F. & A. M. of Kane.
John F. Wegmann, teacher of the German and American school near Fieldon, is a son of Herman and Rosa (Wille) Wegmann, natives of Germany. He was born in Jefferson City, Mo., Oct. 14, 1849. He obtained his education at the Christian Brothers’ College in St. Louis, graduating at that institution in 1867. He learned the printer’s trade in Jefferson City, and followed the same in that city three years. In 1882 he came to Jersey county and settled near Fieldon, since which he has occupied his present position. He is well qualified for his duties and as a teacher is popular and successful. He was married, July 1, 1884, to Josephine Timpe, daughter of William and Theresa (Vahle) Timpe. Mr. and Mrs. Wegmann have one daughter, Mary.
Peter Mowen came to Jersey county about the year 1852. He was born in Ireland, Aug. 1, 1837, and is a son of Arthur and Alice Mowen, both of whom died when Peter was very young, he being left in the care of an uncle, with whom he lived eight years, and was brought up on a farm. In 1850 he came to America, setting sail from Liverpool, and landing in New Orleans, where he remained about one and a half years. He then came to this county. Here he worked for different parties until 1863. In August of that year, he was married to Sarah Chance, widow of Andrew Chance, and daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Hillman. They have six children: George, Robert, Della, Walter, Cyrus and Freddy. Mr. Mowen owns a good farm, comprising 140 acres, and is engaged in general farming. Mrs. Mowen died in February 1884. Mr. Mowen has been a very energetic and industrious man, and has succeeded in accumulating a comfortable property.
Anton Hoelker was born in Germany, Jan. 30, 1830, and is a son of Deitrich and Mary (Hamost) Hoelker. He resided in his native country until he arrived at the age of 30 years, then in 1860 emigrated to the United States, sailing from Bremen and landing in due time at New Orleans. He proceeded then to St. Louis, and came soon after to Jersey county. For the first four years after his arrival here he worked out by the month at farming, then rented a farm which he cultivated about five years. He then purchased a tract of 80 acres located on section 17, English township, where he has ever since resided. Mr. Hoelker has been twice married, first to Catherine Stark, who died in 1873, leaving three children: Albert; Anna, now the wife of John Keller of St. Louis; and Mary. All of the family are members of the Catholic church. He is an industrious and enterprising farmer and a worthy citizen. Before coming to this country, Mr. H. served 7 years in the Prussian army.
Charles Goetten was born April 20, 1825 in Germany, a son of Anthony and Christina (Ulrich) Goetten, also natives of Germany. The former died in that country, the latter is yet living with her son, Charles, the subject of this sketch. She is now upwards of 90 yeares of age. In 1854 Charles bade farewell to his native land, and accompanied by his mother, took passage on a sailing vessel at Bremen and came to America, landing at New Orleans, then proceeded to St. Louis, from where he came soon after to Jerseyville. He hired out one fall and summer, then purchased 120 acres of land on sections 29 and 30, English township, where he has ever since resided. He was married on the 10th day of April 1856, to Josephine Bertman. They are the parents of four children, three of whom are living: Henry, Joseph and Charles. Frederick is deceased. Mr. Goetten and family are members of the Catholic church. His farm now contains 187 acres, and is in a high state of cultivation. He has accumulated his property by hard labor, and is an intelligent and worthy citizen.
James Fleming was born in county Mayo, Ireland, in the year 1838, a son of Patrick and Julia (Clark) Fleming, natives of Ireland. James was reared in that country to agricultural pursuits, and in his early manhood came to the United States, taking passage at Liverpool on board the steamer Constitution, which at that time brought 880 passengers to the American shore. Mr. Fleming located first in Pennsylvania, where he remained one year, then removed to New York state, and soon after to Kentucky, then to Ohio, then to Indiana, coming from the latter state to Jersey county, Illinois. He purchased, on his arrival here, 40 acres of land in English township, where he has ever since resided. In 1875 he built a large frame residence, costing $1,500. He also has other good improvements. He was married in 1863 to Anna Price, but was previously married. By the latter union 10 children have been born: Julia, Patrick E., Anna, Bridget, Richard, Katie, Ella, James, John, and Winifred. Mr. Fleming’s farm is located on section 34. He is an intelligent and thrifty farmer. All of the family are members of the Catholic church.
Gates Hooper, deceased, was born in Germany in 1822. He grew to manhood in that country, there learning the cooper’s trade. In 1845 he came to America, and first stopped in St. Louis, where he remained a short time, then came to Jerseyville, where he followed the cooper’s trade for a time. He than purchased 20 acres of land, to which he soon afterwards added 40 acres. He removed to this land, residing on the same until his death. He was married in 1842 to Dora Harkmaster, daughter of John Harkmaster. They had seven children, five of whom are living: Dora, George, Henry, Sophia and Frank. Mrs. Hooper is now married to Mr. Holla, and now resides in English township, where she owns 60 acres of land. She is a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian church of Fieldon. Her deceased husband was an energetic, hard-working man, and at his death left his family in comfortable circumstances. His loss was deeply felt by his family and by his neighbors.
John H. Goeman, a prosperous citizen of this township, a son of John H. and Margaret (Dougherty) Goeman, natives of Germany. The subject of this sketch was born in that country, April 4, 1829. In 1857 he came to American in a sailing vessel, embarking at Bremen and landing in the city of New York, from where he went to St. Louis. He remained there a short time then came to Jersey county and bought 80 acres of land in English township. An old log cabin was standing on the place, but with that exception, it was unimproved. He now owns 1,000 acres on the same section (19), and has a fine farm with substantial improvements. He was married in Germany in 1847 to Sophia Ollarking, daughter of Henry Ollarking. Mr. and Mrs. Goeman are the parents of four children: Emma, now the wife of William Woods, of Jerseyville; Dena, wife of George Hooper, of English township; Sophia, wife of Edward Sauer, of English township; and Henry. Mr. Goeman is a man of intelligence and enterprise, and a useful member of society. He is, with his wife, a member of the German Lutheran church at Fieldon.
John Garrels came to Jersey county in the summer of 1854, and located at Jerseyville, where he remained 11 years, engaged in working at the shoemaker’s trade. In 1865 he purchased his present farm, which comprises 100 acres, located in English township. Mr. Garrels was born in Germany, Mary 3, 1834, his parents being John and Talka (Jordan) Garrels, natives of Germany. In 1853 he took passage on board a sailing vessel bound for America, and landed in New Orleans. He proceeded then to Alton, where he remained a short time, then came to Jersey county. He learned the shoemaker’s trade in his native country, and followed the same there for 15 years. He was married Jan. 14, 1859 to Lizzie Fall, and by this union had one child, John, who died at the age of 22 years. Mrs. Garrels died in 1861, and Mr. Garrels was again married to Margaret Cooper, who died in 1864, haveing two children, one of whom is living, Charles. In 1865 Mr. Garrels was married to Mary Arnoldi, by whom he has one son, Henry. Mr. Garrels is a prosperous and enterprising farmer, and a good citizen.
Anthony Meisner is of German descent, a son of Anthony and Catherine Meisner, both natives of Germany. The subject of this sketch was born in Jersey county, Ill. Aug. 9, 1853, and was brought up on his father’s farm, receiving his education in the country schools. He has always followed farming, and now owns a well cultivated farm, located on section 30, English township, comprising 100 acres. He is a member of the Catholic church, an enterprising farmer, and a good citizen. Anthony Meisner, Sr. died in 1871. His widow, Mrs. Catharine Meisner is yet living, and resides on the homestead farm.
James L. Seago, a farmer and prominent citizen of English township, was born in Jersey county, Ill., Jan. 7, 1837, his parents being John and Mary Ann (Campbell) Seago, natives of North Carolina. His father died in Tennessee in 1869, and his mother in this township in 1879. He was brought up on a farm, assisting his father in the multifarious duties incident to agricultural life until about 26 years old. In the fall of 1865 he bought 40 acres of land on section 3, where he located and remained one year. He then purchased 80 acres on section 8, where he lived two years. In 1871 he bought 60 acres of land on section 4, subsequently adding 20 acres, and moved on to it, and also purchased a saw mill, which he operated eight years. In 1884 he built a large two-story frame residence costing $3,000. He was married Sept. 17, 1863 to Achsah Carrico, daughter of John C. and Winnie Ann Carrico. They are the parents of four children: Oscar, Winnie, George and Charlie. Mr. Seago now owns 440 acres of land, mostly under cultivation. Mr. and Mrs. Seago are members of the Baptist church. He takes an interest in public affairs, and has held the office of township trustee.
Joseph Hagen, son of John and Louisa (Hunt) Hagen, is a native of Germany, where he was born July 22, 1843. His early life was spent in Germany. There, in his youth, he learned the cooper’s and carpenter’s trades and followed the same until 1867, when he left that country for America, taking passage at Bremen on a sailing vessel and landing in the city of New Orleans. He went directly to St. Louis, then to Alton, where he remained one year, during which he followed the cooper’s trade. He then came to Jersey county, locating in English township. Here he bought 60 acres of land, on which he bought 60 acres of land, on which he built a house and has since made this his home. August 8, 1873, he was married to Catherine Meisner and by this union have five children: Louisa, Frank, Lemena, Joseph and Henry. Mr. and Mrs. Hagen are members of the Catholic church. He is an industrious and enterprising farmer and a good citizen.
Sigel Schaaf, and enterprising young farmer of English township, is a son of Louis and Christina (Youngflood) Schaaf, natives of Germany. Sigel Schaaf was born on the 25th day of Oct. 1863 in Jersey county, Ill., and was here reared on a farm, obtaining his education in the district schools. He resided with his parents until March 28, 1885, when he was united in marriage with Sophia Harding, daughter of Michael and Mary H. Harding. Mr. Schaaf cultivates about 100 acres of land and is an intelligent and worthy citizen.
John Holten, deceased, was born in Germany, Oct. 11, 1821. In 1857 he came to America, landing at New Orleans, where he remained about one year. He then went to St. Louis. In 1863 he purchased 67 acres of land in St. Clair county, Ill., where he resided 11 years. He died March 6, 1871. In April 1856 he was married to Charlotte Ikum, daughter of Matz Ikum. Nine children were born to them, six of whom are now living: Henry, married to Josephine Plongo, and living in French village, St. Clair Co., Ill.; Charles, Frank, Lizzie, Jule and Joseph (twins). After the death of her husband, Mrs. Holten sold her home in St. Clair county and removed to English township, Jersey county, where she purchased 80 acres of land on which she has since resided. She now owns 147 acres of land, 67 acres of which lies in St. Clair county. Mrs. Holten and her family are members of the Catholic church.
William Rainey, son of William and Eliza (Tobrytha) Rainey, is a native of South Carolina, born Oct. 26, 1834. William Rainey, St., died Aug. 30, 1870 in Tennessee. His widow is yet living and resides in Hill county, Tex. The subject of this sketch was reared on a farm, remaining with his parents until he attained his majority. He then went to Tippah county, Miss., where he resided three years, after with he went to Bethel, Tenn. During his residence there he enlisted in Co. I, 11th Ill. Cav., and served three years, participating in the battles of Corinth, Lexington, Vicksburg, Tupelo, and Ft. Blakely. At the close of his term of service, he came to this county and located in English township, which has since been his home. In 1877 he took a trip to Texas, remaining in that state during one winter. Mr. Rainey was married, Nov. 25, 1855 to Malinda C. Thompson, daughter of Robert and Elizabeth A. Thompson. Seven children have been born to them, only one of whom is living, Sarah C. He is the owner of 42 1/2 acres of land on section 2. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and with his wife and daughter, holds connection with the Methodist church.
George C. Kirchner, deceased, settled in Jersey county at an early day, having come from Germany to America in 1835. He was born in Germany, Jan. 16, 1816, and was 17 years old when he immigrated to this country. He landed at New Orleans, and immediately started for St. Louis, but on account of the river being frozen over, was six months making the trip. He remained in St. Louis for a time, then came to Jersey county, where he resided until his decease, Dec. 11, 1881. At the time of his death he owned 365 acres of land, and was in prosperous circumstances. He was married June 27, 1823 to Elizabeth Thurston, who died Sept. 13, 1865. They had 12 children, eight of whom are now living: George B., Gottfried, William W., Charles R., Clarissa C., Valentine H., Otha O., L. H., and Ulysses C. Nov. 1, 1871 Mr. Kirchner was married to Maria C. Becker, who survives him. By this union there were four children: William H., Henry L., Anna and Emelia. Mrs. Kirchner now owns 85 acres of land, and assisted by her children, carries on farming. The family are all members of the German Lutheran church of Fieldon.
Francis Middendorf, son of John H. and Mary E. (Meyer) Middendorf, was born in Germany in the 28th of April 1832. His parents were also natives of Germany. In 1855 Francis came to America, accompanied by his mother. Landing at New Orleans they proceeded to St. Louis and to St. Clair county, Ill., where he remained about four months. He went from there to St. Charles county, Mo., following farmeing and working in a nursery six months, after which he returned to St. Louis. Six months later he returned to St. Charles county and remained about one year, then again went to St. Clair county. In 1862 he came to Jersey county, and for four years worked out by the month. At the end of that time he rented a farm in English township, and lived on the same seven years. He then purchased 120 acres of land on section 19, of the same township, where he has since lived. He was married Aug. 22, 1866 to Magdala Fairman, daughter of Deidrich Fairman. They are the parents of eight children, seven of whom are living: Louisa, Fritz, Katie, Mary A., Clara E., Mary Mena, and Joseph F. One daughter, Mary, is deceased. Mrs. Middendorf is a member of the Catholic Church. He is an industrious man and has secured a comfortable home.
Peter Blaeser was born in Germany, Aug. 13, 1851, a son of Henry and Agnes (Reichard) Blaeser, also natives of Germany. Peter grew to manhood in that country, and when quite young learned the carpenter’s trade, which occupation he has followed most of the time since. On attaining his majority he entered the Prussian army and served three years. In 1876 he bade farewell to the fatherland and set sail for America, embarking at Bremen, on board a steamer bound for Baltimore, where he landed in due time. He then came west to Illinois, settling in Putnam county, where he worked two years, after which he located in English township, Jersey county, where he has since remained. Mr. Blaeser was married on the 14th of Jan. 18879 to Mary Schmeider, daughter of John and Helena Schmeider. They have two children: Mary and Charles J. Mr. and Mrs. Blaeser are members of the Catholic church.
Milo Landon, a prominent resident of English township, was born in what is now Jersey county, March 16, 1838, his parents being Norton and Sarah E. (Falkner) Landon, the former a native of New York and the latter of Pennsylvania. His father is now living in Kansas. His mother died in August 1882. Milo was brought up on a farm and was employed in the various duties incident to an agricultural life on the old homestead until he was 22 years old. He then located on what is now known as the Samuel Hinson farm. Subsequently he sought a location in Kansas and Missouri, but finding nothing better than Jersey county, he returned and resumed farming and has since been thus employed. He was married May 20, 1860 to Huldah Hinson, daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth (Cope) Hinson. They are the parents of 10 children, eight of whom are now living: Charles, who is married to Lizzie Reed, and living at home; Sarah E., Clara, Edward, Frederick, Stella, Elsa and Frank. Those deceased were Orson, who died Jan. 3, 1862, and David who died Jan. 6, 1862. Mr. Landon owns 121 acres of land. He belongs to the A. F. & A. M. of Jerseyville. With his wife he is a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian church at Otterville.
Willis Whitlow, a farmer of English township, was born in Greene county, this state, Feb. 13, 1836, his parents being Daniel and Fannie Whitlow. He was brought up on a farm, remaining at home with his parents until about 21 years old. He has traveled over considerable country since that time, hoping to find some place more agreeable to his tastes. He explored in Southern Kansas, was in Brown county, Ia., attended the World’s Fair at New Orleans, and went down to the Gulf of Mexico. In September 1859 he was married to Emeline Moran, daughter of John and Polly (Bush) Moran. They are the parents of six children, four of whome are now living: Hugh L., Elizabeth, Luella and Ida. His wife died Oct. 5, 1881 of lung disease. Mr. Whitlow now owns 198 acres of land, and is an intelligent, respected citizen of this township.
Edward Allen, a citizen of English township, is a native of Ireland, and was born in 1849, his parents being Richard and Margaret (Sweeney) Allen, both of whom were also natives of the Emerald Isle. His parents both died in their native country. Edward immigrated to this country in 1880. He took passage at Liverpool, Eng. and sailed to Castle Garden, New York, then he came to Jerseyville and located in English township. Here he made his home about two years, then went to Gage and Johnson counties, and for a time there followed farming. He then returned to his homestead in this county, which has since been his home. He was married May 12, 1885 to Mary Ryan. They are both members of the Catholic church at Jerseyville. He cultivates about 30 acres of land.
James P. Powel came to this county at the time of his birth, March 24, 1856, his parents being O. P. and Sarah (Russell) Powel, native Tennesseans, now residents of this county. The subject of this sketch was brought up on a farm, engaged in the various duties of such an occupation, and thus employed, remained with his parents until 28 years old. He was educated in the common schools of the county, which instruction was subsequently supplemented by two terms at the Jacksonville Business College. He was married June 18, 1885 to Kate Daniels, daughter of J. S. Daniels. He cultivates 200 acres of land on section 13. Mr. Powel is a member of the Second Presbyterian church, and is an enterprising young man. He is competent to fill any position in society, and his honesty and ability cannot fail to be appreciated by an intelligent community.
C. D. Beach was born in Vermont, near Burlington, July 17, 1800, his parents being Albert and Minerva (Comstock) Beach, also natives of Vermont. The subject of this sketch was brought up on a farm. When quite young he started out for himself, and coming to this state, received his introduction by being put off a steamboat at the mouth of Macoupin slough. The fireman kindly threw him a firebrand, with which he built a camp fire, and there spent the night. Under such circumstances, especially as he was obliged to keep a good fire to keep away the wolves, he could not sleep or secure much rest. His personal property consisted of a small bundle containing a few shirts. He was, however, and energetic youth and soon secured a position teaching school, which business he followed for about 15 years. He then turned his attention exclusively to farming. In 1831 he built a steam sawmill, which was among the first in the county. He operated the mill about one year, when he sold out to a man named Cory. He then purchased 150 acres of land in section 15, where he has since made his home. He was married in Aug. 1849 to Charlotte Vaughn, daughter of John and Hester Vaughn. By that union there were three children: Chas. L., Helen and Chas. His wife died in 1868. He was again married in Oct. 1877 to Harriet Miller. By this union there were three children: Don, Walter and Harry. Mr. Beach now owns 217 acres of land and is among the old settlers of this county.
Richard Jewsbury was born in England, May 31, 1806. He came to this country in 1836, and located near Jacksonville, Morgan county.
Ebenezer C. Jewsbury was bron in Morgan county, March 8, 1838, his parents being Richard and Ann (Smith) Jewsbury, both of whom were from London, Eng. Ebenezer C. was brought up on a farm. His mother died in 1847, and he remained on the place until 21 years old. He then started out for himself, rented a farm, and followed agriculture until 1862, when he enlisted in the army in Co. K, 101st Ill. Vol. Inf., and served three years. He participated in many battles and skirmishes, among them the siege of Vicksburg, Resaca, siege of Savanna, Atlanta, Peach Tree creek, Bentonville, and was a member of the force that, under Sherman, made the great march to the sea. Returning from the service, he went again to the old homestead in Morgan county, and remained two years. In 1868 he came to this county, and located on sections 10 and 15, where he bought 146 acres of land. He was married Jan. 12, 1870 to Martha J. Brown, daughter of Joseph R. and Harriet (Downes) Brown. They are the parents of five children: Joseph R., Harriet A., Charles S., Maud M., and Harry C. Mr. Jewsbury now owns 166 acres of land, mostly under cultivation, except 40 acres, which is timber. He belongs to the A. F. & A. M., and with his wife is a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian church. He has held the office of school director, trustee and assessor, and is prominently identified with the public matters of this township.
Andrew J. Rice, a prominent farmer of English township, was born in Greene county, this state, March 27, 1832, his parents being William R. and Cynthia E. (Wood) Rice, both of whom were native Kentuckians. His father died in Jan. 1842, and his mother is yet living near Woodville in Greene county. The subject of this sketch was brought up on a farm, and remained on the old homestead until 15 years old, then worked out by the month for about one year, then he abandoned farming and learned the trade of blacksmith, which business he followed for about nine years, working in different places. In 1860 he purchased 80 acres of land on section 15, English township, which has since been his home. In 1869 he added materially to the improvement of his place by the erection, on a good location, of a substantial and commodious frame house, at a cost of about $2,000. He was married Sept. 23, 1858 to Mary E. Short, daughter of Alfred and Susanna Short. They are the parents of five children: Georgia, Joseph A., Harry H., William and James O. Mr. Rice now owns 140 acres of land, located on sections 10 and 15, where he is engaged in farming and stock-raising.
William Timpe is a native of Germany and was born April 12, 1833, his parents being Barney and Anna (Mueller) Timpe, both of whom were also natives of that country. In 1853 he bade farewell to friends and fatherland, and took passage on a sailing vessel at Bremen, bound for New Orleans, U.S.A., arriving in due season. He went to St. Louis and then to Alton, where he remained four years, being engaged in farming. In 1861 he came to this county and located in English township, where he bought 225 acres of land. He was married in Aug. 1855 to Tracy Fall, daughter of Toney Fall. They are the parents of 11 children: Josephine, who is the wife of John Wagman, and living in this township; Lizzie, John, Tracy, Frank, Willie, Joseph, Peter, Anna, Laura and Charles. Mr. and Mrs. Timpe and family are members of the Catholic church. Mr. Timpe is a thorough-going and successful farmer, everything about his place indicating the thrift and enterprise of the owner. He is politically a democrat. Mr. Timpe is now living with his second wife, who was formerly Mary Madaisie.
William Falkner is a native of this state, and of Madison county. He was born Feb. 12, 1822, his parents being John and Sarah A. (Short) Falkner, both natives of Maryland. His father died March 25, 1825, and his mother March 23, 1853. He was brought up a farmer, and remained with his parents until 26 years old, and until their death. In 1846 he enlisted in the army, and served one year during the Mexican war. He participated in the noted battle of Buena Vista. In 1854 he purchased 60 acres of land on section 31, where he located and has lived since. He was married Feb. 24, 1854 to Edna A. Cooper, daughter of Jonathan and Eleanor (English) Cooper. They are the parents of nine children, eight of whom are now (1885) living: Sarah, who was married to Thomas A. Price, deceased, now living at home; Caddie E., living in Jerseyville; Mary R., now the wife of Milo Cope, living near Otterville; Edna P., who was married to William Falkner, now living in English township; John J., William L., Elizabeth S. and Charles N. The one deceased was Mary E., who was married to John Morris. Mr. Falkner owns 60 acres of land on section 36. He, with his wife, is a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian church at Otterville. He is a highly respected citizen of his township, and would be a valuable acquisition to any community.
John G. Erwin, a farmer of English township, was born in this county, Feb. 1, 1841, his parents being William and Hannah (Brown) Erwin, the former a native of South Carolina and the latter of Missouri. His father was born in 1808 and his mother in 1811, both of whom are still living in Girard, Macoupin county. The subject of this sketch was brought up on a farm, and received his education mainly in the schools of this county. He attended McKendree College at Lebanon one year, but on account of sickness, did not there complete the intended course. He was married, Nov. 27, 1866 to Mary Cockrell, daughter of George and Minerva (Darlington) Cockrell. They are the parents of four children: Walter E., Charles W., Hattie B. and Louis Elmer. He owns 80 acres of land, all under cultivation. He is a member of the A. F. & A. M. and R.A.M. Mr. and Mrs. Erwin are members of the Baptist church. He takes a commendable interest in public affairs; was appointed school treasurer in 1871, and has held that office ever since. In 1879-80-81 he was supervisor, and his interests seem closely identified with all public matters calculated to benefit his township and community.
Louis Vahle was born in Jersey county, Illinois, March 31, 1857, being a son of John M. and Mary (Harris) Vahle, the former a native of Germany and the latter of Illinois. He lived with his parents upon a farm until he attained his majority, being educated in the district schools. On Nov. 21, 1878 he was united in marriage with Lena Goetten, daughter of Casper and Christiana Goetten. They are the parents of three children: Mary, Christiana and Josephine. Mr. Vahle is engaged in farming, cultivating 120 acres of land. He is an enterprising and thrifty farmer and a good citizen.
Anthony Vahle, son of John M. and Mary (Harris) Vahle, was born in Jersey county, Jan. 23, 1860. He was reared on a farm, and obtained his education in the district school, remaining with his parents until 23 years old. He then engaged in farming for himself, and now cultivates 120 acres of land. He is a member of the Catholic church and a much respected and worthy young man.
John Howell is a native of this county where he was born July 24, 1853. His parents, Uriah and Elsie (Nevius) Howell, were both born in New Jersey. The former died in April 1884, but the latter is still living, residing in Jerseyville. The subject of this sketch has spent the greater portion of his life in Jersey county. In his youth he learned the carpenter trade, and followed the same for 11 years in this county. In 1873 he went to Nebraska and remained a year, during which he worked part of the time, a part of the time at carpentering. He returned home in 1874 and continued to work at his trade. In the winter of 1881 he purchased 80 acres of land on section 24 of English township, which has been his residence since that time. December 12, 1876, he was married to Greta T. Snell, daughter of Asa and Emeline Snell. Four children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Howell: Clarence, Russell, Minnie and Frederick. Mr. Howell has his farm under cultivation and is an industrious and enterprising farmer.
David J. Roach was born in county Limerick, Ireland in 1834, a son of Terrence and Margaret (Slyne) Roach, also natives of the ‘Emerald Isle.’ The former died in September 1871, the latter is now living in Jerseyville. David was reared on a farm, and remained with his parents until 21 years of age. In 1849 he left his native country, taking passage at Cork, on board a small steamer bound for Liverpool, where he embarked for America. He landed in New York city and went to Chester, Conn., where he resided about seven years, engaged in the livery business, also worked in a tannery. In 1856 he went to East Windsor, Conn. and engaged in railroading five years. Nov. 20, 1858 he was married to Mary McGillicuddy, daughter of Cornelius and Nellie (Joy) McGillicuddy. After marriage he resided three years in Connecticut, and in the fall of 1861, removed to Illinois, locating at Fidelity, Jersey county, where he remained until the spring of 1883. At that date he moved to English township, where he now resides. He owns a farm of 160 acres, located on sections 1 and 2, all of which is under cultivation. Mr. and Mrs. Roach are the parents of nine children: William T., Cornelius, Dennis, David P., Eugene, Mary E., Thomas F. Leonard and Joseph A. Mr. Roach and his family are members of the Catholic church. He is independent in politics, and an intelligent and worthy citizen.
Cornelius Decker came to Jersey county in 1863, locating in English township, where he purchased a small tract of land. He has continued to reside here until the present, and now owns 48 acres, located on sections 26 and 27. Mr. Decker was born in Holland in the year 1819, a son of Frederick and Ellen (Molan) Decker, also natives of Holland. In 1845 the family immigrated to America, landing in New York city. They settled in Union county, N.J., where Cornelius remained about 18 years, then removed to this county. Aug. 10, 1841 he was married to Ellen Weirengan. They had eight children, six of whom are living: Frederick, married to Anna Schneider, now living in New Jersey; Philip, married to Emeline Copse, living in English township; Harmon, living in Missouri; William and John. Mrs. Decker died June 23, 1884. Mr. Decker and his family are members of the Methodist church. He is a worthy and much esteemed citizen.
William B. Burgess was bron in Madison county, Tenn. on the 9th of June, 1834. In 1836 he came to Illinois, accompanying his parents, William B. and Matilda (Brown) Burgess. They made the journey, via the river, from Memphis to St. Louis; then to Belville, Ill., where they resided about 12 years, removing then to Washington county. Three years later they moved to Madison county, where they lived till 1861. The subject of this sketch was reared to agricultural pursuits and stayed with his parents until 19 years old. His mother died in 1857 and his father in 1862. In 1860 he went to Colorado and spent four months near Denver, after which he returned home, and enlisted Feb. 22, 1862 in Co. D. of the 61st Ill. Inf. He participated in many of the most noted engagements of the war and was honorably discharged at the expiration of his term of service. On returned from the army, Mr. Burgess came to Jersey county and settled in English township. He has been twice married, first to Susanna Dillinger, who died May 5, 1857, leaving two children: Alonzo S. and James T. Mr. Burgess was again married Aug. 11, 1861 to Olive J. Smith, and by this union has three children: William H., Charlotte S. and Peachy M. He is a member of the G.A.R. post of Elsah, and also of the M.E. church of Kane.
John C. Bridges is a son of Enoch and Nancy (Rush) Bridges, born June 19, 1836. Enoch Bridges was born in Missouri and died April 25, 1867. He was a Baptist minister, and by trade a mill-wright, but followed farming most of his life. He took part in the Black Hawk war, during which he was commissioned colonel. His wife died April 20, 1858. John C. Bridges was reared on a farm in Jersey county, where he was born, and resided with his parents until their decease. In 1860 he went to Eastern Kansas in search of a location. In 1865 he went with a company of others to Arkansas, and there witnessed the burning of Salem by bushwhackers. In 1871 he took another trip, visiting Nebraska, where he remained a short time. He was married in 1860 to Emeline Rowden, daughter of James Rowden. They have had six children, five of whom are living: Henry W., John N., Mary E., James E. and Hettie E. Cora E. is deceased. In 1880 Mr. Bridges removed with his family to Pierce City, Mo., but remained only a short time, returning to this county. In the fall of 1880 he went to Colorado and engaged in mining four months, after which he returned home. He owns 75 acres of land and is engaged in farming. He has held the office of county treasurer, also the township offices of constable and assessor, holding the former eight years and the latter two terms. He was formerly a member of the M.E. church and of the I.O.O.F.
John Power is of Irish descent, a son of Michael and Bridget (Durney) Power, natives of Ireland. John was born June 1, 1860 in Jersey county and here reared on a farm, receiving his education in the district school. His father died May 22, 1880, but his mother is still living. Mr. Power is an industrious and thriving young farmer. He owns a fine farm containing 220 acres, located on sections 21 and 22. He is a member of the Catholic church.
Otha Kirchner was born in Jersey county Dec. 15, 1859, his parents being George C. and Elizabeth (Thurston) Kirchner, the former a native of Germany, who died in this county, Dec. 11, 1881. Mrs. Elizabeth Kirchner was born in Illinois and died in Jersey county in 1866. The subject of this sketch remained with his parents until their decease. After the death of his father he worked out one year, then purchased 40 acres on section 35, of English township, where he has since resided. He has all of his land in cultivation. He was married July 27, 1882 to Mary Dawm, daughter of Brockmer Dawm. They have one child of their own and one child that they have taken to raise. Mr. and Mrs. Kirchner are members of the German Lutheran church.
Joseph Lenz came to Jersey county in 1857, since which time he has been a resident of English township. He was born in Germany, July 10, 1831. He was reared in his native country, and there, in his youth, learned the stone mason’s trade. He followed it in Germany two years. In 1852 he came with his father to America, embarking at Bremen and landing at New Orleans, where he stopped a short time, then proceeded to St. Louis, then to Alton, where he located permanently and remained five years, following his trade. He removed from Alton to this county in 1857. He purchased at that time 80 acres of land, to which he has since added until he now has 128 acres. He also owns a lime kiln which produces lime of the best quality. He was married April 30, 1865 to Mary Olbert, daughter of Michael and Catherine Olbert. Mr. and Mrs. Lenz are the parents of ten children, eight of whom are living: Catherine, Anna, Lizzie, Christiana, Caroline, Rosa, Lena and Josephine. Those deceased are: Mary, who died Nov. 3, 1867, and Joseph, who died Feb. 4, 1875. Mr. and Mrs. Lenz are members of the Catholic church. He is a democrat politically.
Anthony O’Maley is a native of the Emerald Isle, born in county Mayo in 1823. His parents, John and Bridget (Hines) O’Maley were also natives of Ireland. Anthony was reared on a farm in his native country where he remained until 1851. In that year he came to the United States, taking passage on board a sailing bessel at Liverpool and landing in New York. He went from there west to St. Louis, then to Alton, where he stopped a short time, then rented land in Madison county, on which he resided 11 years. In 1865 he came to Jersey county and purchased 50 acres of land in English township, his present home. He was married the same year to Bridget Ball. They have five children: Mary, married to Michael Haggerty, of Greene county; John, Margaret, Martin and Katie. Mr. O’Maley and all of his family are members of the Catholic church.
Henry C. Harmon was born in Greene county, Ill., March 27, 1850, his parents being John B. and Abigail (Bagby) Harmon, the former a native of Maine, the latter of Virginia. He was brought up on a farm and remained with his father until 21 years old. In 1876 he bought 50 acres of land on section 9, English township. He was married Oct. 17, 1871 to Mary Reddish, daughter of Jacob and Hannah Reddish. They are the parents of five children: Louisa, Henrietta, Stella, Nannie, and an infant. Mr. Harmon now owns 437 acres of land mostly under cultivation. He is a member of the A. F. & A. M. lodge no. 592, Fieldon. He is a young enterprising citizen and a valuable acquisition to any community.
John Madden has been a resident of Jersey county since July 1860, having come here at that date from St. Louis. He purchased, then, 25 acres of land on section 35, English township, where he has since made his home. He now owns 80 acres, situated on sections 34 and 35. Mr. Madden is a native of Europe, born in June 1840, a son of Thomas and Catherine (Knight) Madden. He was reared on a farm in his native state. In 1851 he took passage on board a sailing vessell at Liverpool and came to America, landing at New Orleans. He went from that city to Hollidaysburgh, Pennsylvania, where he remained 18 months, then went south and worked on the levees about three years, after which he went to Cincinnati, O., then to Wheeling, W. Va., then to Kentucky, where he worked one summer. He then went to Hannibal, Mo., and was employed one season on the Hannibal & St. Joe railroad, going from there to St. Louis, and there working at any employment he could obtain until the date of his coming to the county. He was married in 1858 to Ellen Sheridan, daughter of Thomas Sheridan. Mr. and Mrs. Madden are members of the Catholic church.
Douglas Seago is a native of the county, born Sept. 9, 1857, his parents being John and Mary Ann (Campbell) Seago. Douglas was reared on a farm, remaining with his parents until he was about 18 years old. He then worked on the farm for various persons by the month. In 1880 he went to Dallas county, Tex., and remained about six months. He then returned to Illinois and located in Greene county, where he remained about seven months, and then came to this county and purchased 40 acres of land on section 4, English township, where he remained two years, then sold out. He now cultivates 40 acres of land on section 10. He is married, his wife being Hester Ann Reddish. They have been blessed with three children: Thomas J., Harry E., and Herbert.
John Schreiber, on section 27 English township, is a native of Germany, born Feb. 5, 1835, a son of John and Mary (Schlick) Schreiber, also natives of Germany. He resided in the land of his birth until 1874. In that year he came to America, landing at Baltimore, and came immediately west to Illinois, and to Jersey county by way of Alton. He stopped first at Jerseyville, but soon after purchased and removed to his present place. He has 41 acres of land, and is an industrious and thrifty farmer. Mr. Schreiber was married, first, to a Miss Begert, who died in 1875, leaving one child, Lizzie. He was married the second time to Louisa Kerchler. He is a member of the Catholic church, and a democrat politically.