DeWitt County Obituaries
T - Z
Names In Alpha Order
OBITUARY OF HENRY N. TAYLOR
The following article appeared in the 16 January 1891 issue of The Clinton Public.
Death of Henry N. Taylor.
After nearly four score years of life Henry N. Taylor passed into the world beyond at twelve
o'clock, noon, yesterday. He was born in Kent county, Delaware, on the lst of April, 1813,
and if he had lived till next April he would have been seventy-eight years old. When he was
ten years of age his parents moved to Somerset, Ohio, where he lived about thirty years. Mr.
Taylor learned the shoemaker's trade and followed it for nearly twenty-five years. In 1833,
he was united in marriage to Miss Mary Miller, and for fifty-eight years they traveled together
the journey of life. Ten children were born to them of whom six survive, four boys and two
girls. Four of their boys were soldiers during the war of 1861-65, one of whom was wounded
in battle. Fifty-four years ago Mr. Taylor united with the M. E. Church, and for thirty-eight
years he was prominently identified with that denomination in this city. He had remarkably good
health till about one year ago, and a few months ago he was stricken down with paralysis, from
which he never recovered. The funeral services will be held in the M. E. Church next Sunday
morning, at eleven o'clock, conducted by the Rev. Horace Reed, D. D.
Away back in the year 1847, in Somerset Ohio, Henry N. Taylor and Henry Bell formed a partnership
in the dry goods business, and while there they bought the lot in Clinton on which now stands the
Magill House. In 1853 they transferred their business from Ohio to Clinton, and under the firm name
of Taylor, Bell & Co. started a general store in a building that stood on the corner where Henry
Collins' barber shop now is, and this they occupied till 1854, when they built a large three story
frame building an the present site of the Magill House. Here they opened three large stores--dry
goods, groceries, and boots and shoes. In the second story they had a merchant tailoring department
and offices which they rented out, and the third story was occupied by the Masonic fraternity as a
lodge room. One night in the winter of 1857-58 the building was burned down and they succeeded in
saving but a small part of their stock. They had not a dollar of insurance on either building or
stock, so that the firm was financially crippled. Gathering up what little they had saved of their
goods, they moved back to the building they first occupied on the Collins corner and attempted to
collect up what was due them. The firm owned a half section of land in Wilson
township, a quarter section of which is now owned by J. K. Davis, and an this they engaged in the stock
In 1860 Mr. Taylor sold his interest in the farm to his partners and then opened a dry goods store in the
room now occupied by the post-office, in partnership with J. J. Andrews. John Cain bought out Andrew's
interest and the store was moved into the room now occupied by John Phares, billiard hall. This partnership
lasted two years when Smith Taylor bought Cain's interest. The new firm lasted till after the war, when Al
Blackford joined the firm, and in 1867 they moved into the room now occupied by Katz & Co. The firm did a
large business in dry goods, clothing and merchant tailoring till 1872, when they retired from business.
A few years later Mr. Taylor went into the coal business with his son Fletcher, and continued till a few
months ago, when his health failed and Fletcher took the business into his own hands . . . .
OBITUARY OF MRS. ELIZA A. TENNEY - 1891
The following obituary appeared in the 27 March 1891 issue of The Clinton
DEATH OF MRS. TENNEY.
Mrs. Eliza A. Tenney was born December 12th, 1829, near St. Omar, Indiana, and in 1835 removed
with her parents, Daniel 11. and Margaret Dragstrem, to Waynesville, Illinois, where she resided
until the time of her death March 20th, 1891. Her father died in 1884. Her mother is still
living at Waynesville, and is over 80 years of age.
In 1845 Boynton Tenney, a native and resident of North Groton, New Hampshire, having finished his
study of medicine, and spent one year in a hospital in Boston, came west and located at the old
town of Marion, now DeWitt. He remained there but one year, and in 1846 changed his location to
Waynesville. Here he soon entered upon a large practice, which he retained until his retirement
from it, years later. Owing to failing health soon after locating in Waynesville he became
acquainted with the subject of this sketch, and on May 9tli, 1848, was married to Eliza A.
Dragstrem. Dr. and Mrs. Tenney began life together, with but little of this world's goods, but
with two hearts as full of love, energy and enthusiasm as were ever sheltered beneath one roof.
They ate their first meal upon a table the Doctor himself found time to make. Everything that had
to be done they did themselves, each helping the other. They soon built themselves a home, hauling
the lumber by wagon from Pekin, and the Doctor doing much of the carpenter work himself. At that
time there was [neither] railroad nor telegraph line in the county.
Throughout his practice Mrs. Tenney very frequently accompanied the doctor upon his trips, which
extended over the western part of this and the eastern part of Logan County, and many of the old
settlers yet remember their visits to their homes in times of sickness. Dr. Tenney was a member
of the famous prorogued legislature in 1863, and represented his township for eight terms on the
board of supervisors, being the only public offices he ever held.
There were three children born to them, one dying in infancy. Charles B. Tenney, who lives in
Waynesville, and Mrs. Allie A. Ingham, wife of judge Geo. K. Ingham of this city. March 16th,
1869, Doctor Tenney died after a long, severe illness. Although at this time Mrs. Tenney had had
but little experience in matters of business, yet she [decided] to take upon herself the management
of the interest her husband had left, rather than turn it over to lawyers and agents to manage for
her, believing that it were better to have her time and mind fully occupied and employed than to sit
(town and entrust every thing to others. Her after life showed the soundness of her judgment. She soon
became one of the most careful, accurate and successful business women in DeWitt county. Her judgment
on business propositions were remarkably sound, and scores of men who have sustained business relations
toward her from ten to twenty years past unite pronouncing her one of the clearest-headed, most pleasant
and satisfactory person,- with whom they ever transacted any business. Mrs. Tenney united with the
Presbyterian Church at Waynesville in 1857 under the pastorage of Rev. Thomas M. Newell, now deceased,
and lived a kind, considerate, Christian life. She wisely heeded tl-te divine command "Set thy house
in order for thou shalt die ......
An unusually large number of friends and acquaintances met at her late residence in Waynesville last
Sunday afternoon for the [funeral] services, which were conducted by Rev. W. A. Hunter, of Clinton,
assisted by Rev. A. S. Wight, recently called to the pastorate of the Waynesville Presbyterian Church,
and Rev. J. E. Artz, pastor of the M. E. Church ----
OBITUARY OF HARVEY TOOMBS -- 1901
The article below appeared in the 8 March 1901 issue of The Clinton Register.
Saturday evening, Mar. 2, at 4:30 o'clock, Harvey Toombs died at his home in the southwest
part of the city, aged 68, of cancer of the throat. He had been confined to his home several
weeks. He lived in Clinton many years . . . .
Deceased was born in Erie county, N. Y., Jan. 31, 1833. When he was 10 years old his parents
moved to Michigan where the home was for three years before moving to Little Rock, Ill., where
he was married to Miss Julia A. Welch in 1853. To them six children were born, four daughters
and two sons, all living. They are Mrs. S. T. Jones, of Clinton, Jennie, Ella, Dorathea,
Harvey and Frank, who lived With their father. Mrs. Toombs died eight years ago. From Little
Rock the family moved to Sandwich, Ill., then to Shelby county in 1875, coming to Clinton in
1879, where they had since lived.
For several years Mr. Toombs conducted a store in Clinton, but met with business reverses,
and had since been engaged in the insurance business until a few months ago . . . .
Funeral services were held at the home Tuesday at 10 o'clock, conducted by Rev. S. C. Black.
Interment was in Woodlawn cemetery.
OBITUARY OF RHODUM THRASHER - 1905
The following article appeared in the 24 February 1905 issue of The Clinton Register,
ANOTHER SUDDEN DEATH
One of Harp Township's Best Known Farmers Dies at His Home After a Few Hours’ Illness
Two weeks ago Rev. Rhodum Thrasher, living four miles east of Clinton, bought property in
Lane and was preparing to give up farming and move to town. Saturday he took a load to
Lane and was taken ill with a severe pain in the breast. After returning home the pain
continued and he could sleep but little during the night, and most of the time could not
he down. About 2:30, he realized he was dangerously ill, and requested that a doctor be sent
for, which was done, but death closed his life before the doctor arrived. He was 74 years,
1 month and 10 days old.
Rhodum Thrasher was born in Virginia Jan. 8,1831, was raised to manhood in that state and later
moved to Maryland where he married Miss Mary A. Reckner in January, 1850. Two months later
they moved to Illinois and settled in Wilson township, DeWitt county. He since lived in
Rutledge, Creek and Harp townships. He was converted in the old Swisher school house in
1858, and united with the Christian Union church. He felt that he was called to preach the
gospel, and from that time until his death he was a faithful worker in the vineyard of the Lord.
Rev. Thrasher was a kind, loving husband and father, and was never happier than when his
children and their families would come home to visit him in his declining years. He was a kind
neighbor and kind to all he met. He was always ready to help his fellow men in time of need,
he would deprive himself to help one in distress. His every day life was devoted to his God
and he was an every day Christian.
He is survived by his wife, five children, three of his children being dead. Those living are
Mrs. Millie C. Arthur, Mrs. Martha Cowels, Thos. N. and Asa W. Thrasher and Mrs. Vinava Long.
Those deceased are John R., Anna L. and Mary C. Two sisters are living, Mrs. Minte Unphone,
Pontiac, Ill., and Mrs. Ingaty Miller, Mansfield, Mo. He is survived by nineteen grandchildren
and twenty seven great-grandchildren.
Funeral services were held in the church in Lane Monday at 1 o'clock, conducted by Rev. Thos.
Miller .... Burial in Rose Cemetery.
OBITUARY OF ORIN WAKEFIELD - 1885
The following article appeared in the 8 May 1885 issue of The Clinton Public.
Orin Wakefield was born August 27,1808, at Watertown, N. Y., and he died at his home in DeWitt,
Ill at 25 minutes past nine o'clock, Sunday morning, May 3,1885, having attained the age of 76
years, 8 months and 6 days. He was one of the sixth generation from Thomas Wakefield, who in
1680 came to Massachusetts, from Yorkshire, England. His father, Joseph Wakefield, though born
in New Hampshire, was raised in Windsor, Vermont, and in 1800 removed to Watertown, where he
married Miss Susan Sawyer. This Sawyer family dates back to Thomas Sawyer, who in 1639 came
from Lincolnshire, England, to Lancaster, Mass. The descendants of these two families,
Wakefield and Sawyer, are scattered through many of the states of the union. Seven children
were born from this marriage, of whom Betsey, Elisha, Orin, Zera and Cyrenius have since lived
and died in this and McLean counties. Of these Orin was the pioneer in this state. He came
to this county in the spring of 1833; and on May 28th, of that year entered a portion of the
farm which he owned and occupied at the time of his death. He at once commenced opening this
farm which he industriously cultivated and improved for over half a century. In those early
days he was a strong active man, and counted it nothing to cut and split two hundred oak rails
per day. He was married to Hannah McCord, who belonged to one of the pioneer families of this
county, March 13,1836. Eight children were born to him by this marriage: Susan, Mary, George
W., Melancthon, Bandusia, Hephestion, Philetus and Lycurgus. Susan and Mary died in infancy,
and Hephestion at the age of 18 years. The other five children survive him, and though widely
scattered from the old homestead, they were all present with him at and before thetime of his
death. George W. is now judge of the circuit court in Iowa, and resides at Sioux City.
Melancthon is a lawyer at Cherokee, Iowa, and has there been honored by seven successive terms
as mayor. Miss Bandusia was for many years a teacher in the Normal University, at Normal, Ill.,
but now resides with her brother, George W., at Sioux City. Philetius is a physician, and now
resides at Pratt, Kan. Lycurgus, is a lawyer at Pierre, D. T. His wife, Hannah Wakefield, died
He was again married to Mrs. Susan N. Howard, who now survives him, February 18,1858, from
which marriage no children have been born. In his boyhood days Orin Wakefield worked in summer
on his father's farm and in winter attended school. He thereby obtained a good common school
education, and thereafter taught a few terms of school in the neighborhood. After reaching
manhood he obtained for a time employment in Sacketts Harbor, where he displayed and cultivated
that literary taste, that love of books, which marked his after life .... In his western home
where books were scarce, he would from memory amuse and instruct his children by relating facts
of history, by telling the wondrous stories of Homer, and by reciting choice selections of
prose and verse .... He held several offices in DeWitt township .... He was a Republican in
The funeral services were held Tuesday of this week, at the Fullerton Church ....The Rev. D. P.
Bunn, Universalist minister at Decatur, Ill., delivered the funeral address.
At the conclusion of the services the remains were viewed for the last time by his friends,
when they were borne to the McCord burying ground ....
OBITUARY OF GEORGE WAMPLER - 1903
The following article appeared in the 28 August 1903 issue of The Clinton
ANOTHER OLD SOLDIER FALLS.
Father of County School Superintendent, T. C. Wampler,
Dies at His Home Near Kenney.
George Wampler died at 4:30 Monday afternoon at his home, two miles east of
Kenney, aged 64 years, 7 months and 25 days, his disease being pronounced abcess of
the pleura. He had been in poor health about two and a half years, but was not
confined to his bed until last Friday evening.
Deceased was born in Knox county, Ind., Dec. 29, 1838. When he was young his
parents moved to Lawrence county, Ill., where he was married to Rebecca Seitzinger, in
1861. To them one daughter and four sons were born, of whom only William H. and
Thomas C., county superintendent of schools of DeWitt county, are living. Those
deceased are Mary A., James L. and Benjamin F., James dying near Kenney a year ago.
The wife and mother died Jan. 20,1875. At her death four children were living and he
cared for them with a devotion that was commended by all his friends. Several years
previous to the death of James, his home was with him. He then made his home with
William. During the Civil war he served in the 65th Illinois and his four brothers also
served in that war. Two of them are living, Henry, of Palestine, Ill., and David, of
LaCenter, Wash., both of whom visited him a few months ago. He was a member of the
G. A. R. at Kenney, and [of] all those of that post, only five attended the funeral. All
the other members have died or moved away. He was an honored citizen and had no
enemies. He was always greatly attached to home and was seldom seen elsewhere
except on business. The last twenty years he had spent in this county, first three years
east of Waynesville and seventeen years near Kenney, where all his neighbors attest of
his uprightness. His only regret was that he must die before the children of his deceased
son James were old enough to care for themselves.
Funeral services were held Tuesday at the residence at 3 o'clock, conducted by
Rev. T. A. Canady, assisted by Rev. E. A. Gilliland .... Burial was in the Tunbridge
cemetery northeast of Kenney.
OBITUARY OF MRS. WINIFRED MOORE WARNER - 1894
The following article was published in the 8 June 1894 issue of The Clinton Public.
Mrs. Winifred Moore Warner.
Death took a kindly soul from earth this morning, at two o'clock, when it beckoned Mrs. Winifred
Moore Warner to the spot where the shadows thicken. She was as generous in her thoughts as in her
words and acts, and will be regretted by the large circle of friends who became attached to her
through her many fine qualities and kindly disposition. For three days her life hung upon a
thread, and the heart of Clinton was sad while the Death angel hovered over that home. For nearly
a year Mrs. Warner has been art invalid, and recently she realized the fact that she must pass
through a terrible surgical ordeal. With Mrs. Bishop, and accompanied by her husband and by her
family physician, Dr. F. E. Downey, Mrs. Warner went to Chicago last week and consulted Dr. Ludlum,
a celebrated surgeon. It was decided that an operation was necessary. It was life or death, and
the scales were so evenly balanced that Dr. Ludlum could offer no word of hope. Fully acquainted
with the danger that confronted the brave woman, for the love she bore her husband and children,
she resigned herself to the fate that awaited her. On Tuesday morning Dr. Ludlum and a trained nurse
arrived from Chicago, and assisted by Drs. Downey, McIntyre and Hyde, the operation was successfully
performed. All the care that loving friends and husband and children could give surrounded the couch
of the suffering wife and mother. For a time the clouds of doubt would clear away and there was hope
she would pass the death line and be restored to health and bodily vigor; and then darkness would come
as the Death Angel seemed very near. Hour after hour the life tide ebbed and flowed. Mrs. Warner was
conscious through it all, even to the final hour, and she fully realized her condition. But calmly and
patiently she awaited the change that must determine whether it was to be life or death. With the
Christian's hope she trustingly looked for strength to that source that never fails, and her Heavenly
Father sustained her as the shadows deepened.
At two o'clock this morning, surrounded by sad-hearted husband and children and her father and brother,
the loving wife and mother crossed the river of death to meet her first-born and her mother, who had
long been waiting for her coming.
Mrs. Winifred Moore Warner was born in Tremont, Tazewell County, Illinois, on the 6th of May, 1849.
Her father, the Hon. C. H. Moore, soon after moved his family to Clinton. She was educated at a ladies'
seminary in Painesville, Ohio, and was a woman learned in literature. On the 26th of March, 1868, she
was united in marriage to Colonel Vespasian Warner, and to them were born six children, five of whom
survive her. Mrs. Warner's life was a benediction in the home, and her kindly, genial nature drew friends
who loved her because of her unselfishness and a desire to make others happy. She was an earnest Christian
woman and a member of the Presbyterian Church. Mrs. Warner was the only daughter of the Hon. C. H. Moore
and the sister of Arthur Moore.
The funeral services will be held at the family residence on Sunday afternoon, at four o'clock.
OBITUARY OF GEORGE WEEDMAN - 1893
The following article appeared in the 11 August 1893 issue of The Clinton Public.
Death of George Weedman.
Last Monday night Death closed its mortgage on the life of one of the early settlers of Santa
Anna township. From the moment we enter life the Angel of Death takes a mortgage on us, and
it is only a question of time when it will be foreclosed. In infancy, youth, and full vigor
of manhood and womanhood, and in old age, we know not the hour when Death shall order the
account to be closed. Away back in 1830 the Weedman family came from Ohio and settled on a
farm near Heyworth. The early Weedmans were of Holland extraction, but they came to America
and settled in Pennsylvania long before the revolution. In 1836 John Weedman, the father of
the Weedmans of Farmer City, bought land near that town, and there the children and
grandchildren to the second and third generations have made their home.
George Weedman, who died at his home in Farmer City last Monday night, was the oldest of the
Weedman brothers. He was born in Berry County, Ohio, on the 28th of March, 1824, and was in
his seventieth year when his life history ended. He was about twelve years old when his father
first settled near Farmer City, therefore lie took rank as one of the early pioneers of this
county. Forty-three years ago, when the gold fever broke out in California, George and Amos
Weedman and two other brothers, with a number of young friends, started on the overland trip
to the land of gold. Thirteen months to a day from the time he left home was he back again in
Farmer City. The life of a farmer had more attractions for him than the uncertain fortunes of
a gold miner. He devoted his attention to fanning and stock raising and prospered, owning over
four hundred acres of as fine land as the sun shone on and had it stocked with the best breeds
of horses, cattle, and other stock. Five years ago he felt that he had done his share of hard
work so he retired from the farm and built a comfortable home in the town for himself and wife.
Mr. Weedman was married April 17, 1845, to Catherine Danner who survives him. Mr. and Mrs.
Weedman were the parents of ten children, of whom nine are living, namely: Jacob and E. W., of
Denver, Col.; Mrs. Henry Farmer, of Farmer City; Mrs. J. W. Baker and Mrs. W. L. Swiney, both
of Ellsworth county, Kas.; Mrs. B. M. Leady, of St. Louis, and Mrs. M. B. Neal, A. L. Weedman
and J. S. Weedman, of Farmer City.
Weedman family take rank as the leaders in all public enterprises in Farmer City and in Santa
Anna township. In politics they belong to the radical school of Republicanism, and in religion
they are just as intense Methodists. There is no policy methods in the Weedman blood. Three
of the brothers have died within the past few years - John, __ ck, and now George.
George Weedman was an earnest friend of the DeWitt County Agricultural Society, and no fair
was ever held since its organization that he was not present. And as a mark of respect to
his memory the officers of the fair association went to Farmer City on Wednesday to attend the
OBITUARY OF MRS. RACHEL WELD - 1900
The article below appeared in the 1 November 1900 issue of The Clinton Register.
. . . Mrs. Rachel Weld . . . died about 5 o'clock yesterday morning, aged 65 years, 3 months
and 24 days. Funeral services at the home on North Jackson Avenue tomorrow at 2:30, conducted
by Rev. S. C. Black. Interment in Woodlawn cemetery.
Rachel E. Giddings was born in Mechanicsburg, O., July 7, 1836. When she was twelve years old
her parents, Milton and Sarah Giddings came to Clinton where she was married to John Hickman
Sept. 22, 1853. Two children were born to them; both are dead. September 12, 1870, she
was married to William Weld. They lived on a farm one mile south of Clinton many years. About
ten years ago they moved to Clinton where Mr. Weld died Mar 12, 1895. Besides her daughters,
Fannie and Mrs. Ella Tennant, a brother, Milton Giddings, lives in Gainesville, Fla., a former
merchant of Clinton. She united with the Presbyterian church many years ago.
OBITUARY OF WILLIAM C. WILLIAMS -- 1904
The following article appeared in the 12 February 1904 issue of The Clinton Register.
OCTOGENARIAN CALLED HOME. One of the Oldest Settlers of DeWitt County Gone to His Reward.
Died in Chicago.
William C. WILLIAMS, the last old pioneer of HARP township, died Jan. 29 at the home of his
daughter, Mrs. G. W. NIXON in Chicago.
Mr. WILLIAMS was born in Kenton county, Ky., Oct. 23, 1823. When he was sixteen years old he
came with his parents to what was then called the "new country of Illinois," and settled in
Dewitt county which had since been his home. In 1853 he was married to Miss Lucinda HARROLD;
six children blessed this union. His wife and two daughters, Mrs. M. C. ENOS and Mrs. P.
WAKEFIELD preceded him to the better land. His surviving children, Eli WILLIAMS of McPherson,
Kan., Mrs. G. W. LEMEN, of Greensburg, Kan., Mrs. C. F. SWISHER and Mrs. G. W. NIXON of Chicago
were with him when he passed over the "dark river."
Mr. WILLIAMS and his wife began the battle of life with light hearts and willing hands, and by
hard work and rigid economy he became the owner of over five hundred acres of fine, fertile
land, every acre bought by hard, honest toil. He also split the rails that fenced this farm.
It might truthfully be said that his life was spent in hard labor. Last summer, though bowed
with his four score years, he dug and laid a large tile ditch on his farm ....
The funeral was preached at the M. E. church by the pastor on last Monday evening. Interment
in the DeWitt cemetery.
OBITUARY OF JOEL S. WILSON - 1890
The following obituary appeared in the 15 August 1890 issue of The Clinton
Joel S. Wilson.
On last Saturday evening, at nine o'clock, Joel S. Wilson was sitting by the
window in his home talking with his wife and Mrs. Clint. Richards about some old-time
reminiscences, when suddenly he ceased talking. He was dead. It was a sad blow to his
wife, yet how merciful it was to Mr. Wilson that he should die without pain or a
struggle. Some time last March he was attacked with a severe pain in the breast, which
finally yielded to medical treatment, when he was afflicted with a bronchial affection,
which resisted the power of medicine. Dr. Wilcox, his physician, was satisfied that
there was no relief for him, but to make sure that he was not mistaken in his diagnosis of
the case the doctor advised Mr. Wilson to go to Chicago about four weeks ago to consult
some of the celebrated specialists in bronchial diseases. After spending a few days in
Chicago Mr. Wilson returned home with hi,,; fate sealed; the Chicago doctors could not
help him or even give him promise of temporary relief. During all his sickness Mr.
Wilson was not confined to his bed, but was able to walk around the house and yard;
and on account of his throat he could not sleep at night in bed but had to recline in a
chair. But few in town really knew that he was sick, although it was mentioned now
and then that he was confined to his home. He had passed the threescore years and ten
allotted to man, and at the time of his death he was seventy-two years, four months and
six days old. He was buried in Woodlawn Cemetery on Monday afternoon, his remains
being followed to the grave by a large number of the older citizens of Clinton and this
part of the county.
Joel S. Wilson was born in Bond county, Illinois, on the 3d of April, 1818. In his
youth he learned the carpenter's trade. On the 20th of March, 1854, he came to Clinton
and worked at his trade in the building of the Central passenger and freight depots. He
worked at his trade only a short time when he engaged in the lumber business where
Kent's yard now is. Mr. William Fuller was also in tire lumber business, and after a time
the two yards were consolidated and Messrs. Wilson and Fuller were in partnership for
nearly three years, when Mr. Wilson sold out, and in 1859 he engaged in the grocery
business with Mr. Rouze as a partner. In 1862 he sold his interest in the grocery business
to Mr. Rouze and bought out Jake Zorger's bakery, which stood where Runbeck's
tailoring establishment now is. In 1866 he bought the frame building where Kelly's
bakery now stands, and from that time, with the exception of a brief intermission,
carried on the bakery and confectionary business there till 1884, when he sold out and
retired. Mr. Wilson was a careful business man, and when he retired he had a
competence to provide for himself and family. About three years ago Mr. Wilson bought
the Robert Magill property on East Main street, and spent his time in beautifying the
grounds around his home. In business he was the soul of honor and every body was his
friend. His word was as good as his bond. He leaves a wife, one son, and a grandson.
His firstborn son died before he came to Clinton.
OBITUARY OF SAMUEL WILSON - 1890
The following obituary appeared in the 7 November 1890 issue of The Clinton Public.
On the banks of the Ohio, in Lewis county, Kentucky, on Christmas day, 1820,
Samuel Wilson, of Wapella, was born. His early life was spent on a farm, and in his
boyhood days much of his time was spent in hunting in the mountains of his native
State. When he was eighteen years old he and John Brown, of Wapella township, hired
out for a trip down the river to New Orleans on a trading boat, and this was one of the
great events of their young lives and one which they never tired of talking about even in
their old days. In 1843 Mr. Wilson and Miss Harriet Grover was united in marriage in
Lewis county, Kentucky, and to them nine children were born, and Mrs. Wilson and six
children -- four sons and two daughters -- are left to mourn the death of a loving husband
and father. Mr. Brown came to DeWitt county in an early day, and through his influence
Mr. Wilson and his family moved from Kentucky to Wapella township in 1873. Mr.
Wilson bought a farm near Wapella and he and his sons tilled it for a number of years.
Five years ago he left the farm and moved into the village of Wapella, where with his son
Ocean he engaged in the grain and stock business, in which they were very successful.
Mr. Wilson was a competent business man and a successful trader, and very rarely did
his judgment mislead him. Before his death he turned over the company business to his
son Ocean .... To each of his children he gave a farm or its equivalent in money. In
business matters he was strictly honorable, and as a neighbor there was no kinder or
more generous man in Wapella. Six months ago his health failed, yet through all his pain
and suffering he was as gentle as a child. One week ago to-day (October 31) Samuel
Wilson departed this life, and on Saturday his old friends and neighbors paid the last
tribute of respect to one who had endeared himself to all by his kindly and unselfish life.
OBITUARY OF REBECCA (STOUT) WOLFE - 1893
The following obituary appeared in the 13 October 1893 issue of The Clinton Public.
More Than Fourscore Years Had She Counted.
Rebecca Stout was born in Logan County, Ohio, near Bellefontaine, December 8, 1810, and died
at her late residence in this city October 9, aged eighty-three years, ten months and one day.
She lived in Logan County, Ohio, to young womanhood, and where she enjoyed the limited
privileges of education and religion peculiar to those early days. She was of a large vigorous
and enterprising family of brothers and sisters, of were Colonel Thomas Stout, of the Mexican
War, and Jesse Stout, who died in this city a few years ago.
She was united in marriage to John B. Wolfe, Sr., December 23,1828, with whom she enjoyed a
happy married life for forty years. He died April 12, 1868. They moved to what is now called
Mulberry Grove, Ill., in 1838, where they remained until 1845, when they moved to [Montrose],
Iowa. In 1846 they came to DeWitt County where they a farm near Tunbridge, and lived until
1854, when they moved to Clinton. Her Brother and Sister Wolfe lived until the good angels
came to conduct them to the of God.
Mother Wolfe, though raised by Quaker parents, was converted in young girlhood and united with
the Methodist Episcopal Church nearly sixty-five years ago - when the family lived near
Tunbridge the grove near the old home was often used for religious services in summer time,
and their home was always open to the itinerant preacher. After moving to Clinton, the young
people's class meeting was held Sunday afternoons for years at Father Wolfe's residence, and
much of the time was conducted by Prof. T. N. McCorkle, well known here and in many places in
Illinois as an efficient teacher in our public schools, and a devoted Christian gentleman.
The subject of this memoir was the mother of nine children, six daughters and three son, seven
of whom are living, viz., Elizabeth Humphrey and Philip Wolfe, of this city, Margaret
Humphrey, of Lincoln; Mary Taylor, of Pana, Rev. J. R. Wolfe, of California Conference; Rev.
Dr. J. B. Wolfe, Presiding Elder of the Bloomington District; and Kate Brown of this city.
Mother Wolfe was a woman of unusual determination on lines of her conviction of duty, and of
extraordinary strength of endurance. She did her whole duty as a helpmeet in the toils and
loyalties of life, and no mother could be more interested in and devoted to her children than
she was to hers. There are some things remarkable in her life, not so much her energy, her
endurance, her volitional power, but in the mist of these a calmness of demeanor and sweetness
of disposition rarely equaled on earth. In all her toils and trials, hopes and fears, those
who have known her for a half century never saw her what we commonly call angry . She never
talked ill of her neighbors, and always had some palliating word for the unfortunate; and to
her children were as near right as any children could be.
The funeral services were held in the M. E. Church on Tuesday afternoon,
conducted by Rev. W. J. Tull, pastor of the church.
OBITUARY OF MRS. ISABEL WOODWARD -- 1896
The following article appeared in the 28 February 1896 issue of The Clinton Register.
DIED IN CALIFORNIA. Mrs. Isabel Woodward Is Summoned to Her Final Rest at the Home of Her Son.
Last week D. T. GAY received a telegram from 0. J. WOODWARD at Fresno, Cal., announcing the
dangerous illness of Grandma WOODWARD . . . . Sunday night about 8 o'clock Mr. GAY received a
telegram announcing her death, and that the body would be brought here for burial. Mr.
WOODWARD is on the way to Clinton with the remains, and Mr. GAY left Wednesday evening for
Kansas City where he will meet Mr. WOODWARD, and they expect to arrive here on the Diamond
Isabel B. McPHERSON was born near Knoxville, Tenn., March 1 1812, and would have been 84 years
old next Sunday. In 1834 she was married to Jesse WOODWARD in Virginia. To them were born
three sons and two daughters, two of whom, one son and one daughter are living. Mrs. D. T.
GAY, of this city was an adopted daughter. The family came to Illinois over fifty years ago
settling in Logan county. The husband died several years ago, and Mrs. WOODWARD continued to
live in Clinton. At the time of his death they lived in a house where the Register office
now is. Mr. WOODWARD previous to the war built and occupied the house now owned by Richard
BUTLER. After 0. J. WOODWARD located in Fresno, Cal., a few years ago, his mother had spent
most of her time there. During her residence there she had made the journey to California
three times the last time being in 1893 when 81 years old. She united with the Methodist
church when 20 years of age, and for 64 years had lived the life of a consistent Christian.
Soon after her fatal sickness of one week, she had a stroke of partial paralysis . . . .
OBITUARY OF GARRISON WRIGHT
The following article appeared in the 8 August 1890 issue of The Clinton Public.
Fatal Accident to Garrison Wright.
On Tuesday of last week William Garrison Wright was in this city and on his way home in the
afternoon he was thrown twice from buggy, the second time receiving injuries on the head that
proved to be fatal . . . .He died on Friday, and on Sunday was buried in Woodlawn Cemetery. He
was in his eightieth year.
Garrison Wright was one among the early settlers of this county; indeed he settled here before
DeWitt county was organized. He was a native of South Carolina and came to this State about the
year 1825. He first settled in Blooming Grove, close to where the city of Bloomington now is,
and early in the thirties he came into this county and entered the farm on which he spent his life.
He built a log-cabin and went to work with a will to cultivate the land and make for himself and family
a home. He was among the last of the pioneers when he died. During the Black Hawk War he enlisted
and served till its close, and was engaged in the last battle of the war which took place at Bad Axe,
Wisconsin. It is a remarkable coincidence that the day of his death was the anniversary of the battle
of Bad Axe. During his lifetime Mr. Wright owned considerable land, but he was liberal to his children
and gave each their portion as they became of age and started in life for themselves. His home farm, on
the Marion road, about three miles east of Clinton, was one of the best in the county. He had a comfortable
home and all his surroundings were pleasant. In l847, before the days of township organization, he was
elected as one of the three county commissioners that then managed the business affairs of the county,
and served a term of two years, when the system was changed. He served his township on several occasions
as an officer, and in every trust he was true to the interests of the people
OBITUARY OF WILLIAM YOUNG - 1893
The following obituary appeared in the 30 June 1893 issue of The Clinton Register.
AT THREE SCORE AND TEN. Another of the Pioneers Falls Asleep at Farmer City.--Brief Biography.
William YOUNG died at his home in Farmer City June 23 at 11 a. m., from what is commonly
called yellow jaundice, after an illness of about four months. Mr. YOUNG was barn in Edinburg,
Scotland, on April 29, 1823, and was raised in Liverpool, England. He was one of the early
settlers in Farmer City, (formerly Mount Pleasant) coming here about 1848. He at once entered
into business, clerking for various firms, among which was BLACKFORD & LOWRY. In 1853, at
Oquawka, Ill., he was married to the wife that now survives him, and whose maiden name was
Mary A. BOWSER, and located in Mount Pleasant, where they have resided ever since, living at
one time where the First National bank is now located. There were born to this couple four
boys and two girls, three boys and one girl of whom are now living and all in Farmer City,
viz: W. S. YOUNG, R. B. YOUNG, Thomas YOUNG and Zilba YOUNG. Mr. YOUNG embarked in the
grocery business in an early day and continued it most of the time since he came here until
about five years ago, when he sold out the stock to his son, R. B. YOUNG, and retired from
active business. He was also cashier of the First National bank of that city one year, during
J. H. HANSON's presidency of the bank . . . . About four years ago he took a trip back to his
native land, taking with him his son Thomas, to try and find the whereabouts of a brother
and sister that he had left behind when he came to this country, but, failing to find any
trace of them, he supposed them dead, and returned to his Illinois home where he resided
until he died. By close attention to business Mr. YOUNG acquired considerable property.
OBITUARY OF JACOB ZIEGLER, SR. - 1897
The following obituary appeared in the 28 May 1897 issue of The Clinton Public.
AT A RIPE OLD AGE.
JACOB ZIEGLER, SR., DIES, AGED 96 YEARS.
Father of Honorable Jacob Ziegler Departs This Life at the Home of his Daughter.
Jacob Ziegler, Sr., died at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Louis Lowentrout, 603 West Market
Street, Bloomington, Saturday, at the advanced age of 96 years. He had enjoyed excellent
health up to Thursday, when he stumbled on a stairway and fell, breaking his shoulder blade
and two ribs. He was also internally injured. The accident compelled him to take his bed,
and he failed rapidly until death ensued. His son, Hon. Jacob Ziegler, of near this city, was
telegraphed for immediately after the accident occurred and was at his father's bedside when
the latter died.
Mr. Ziegler was born in Bavaria, Germany, in September, 1801. As a lad he saw Napoleon and his
armies as they moved backward and forward through that section of Europe, and related many
anecdotes of those troubled times. He was married in 1829. In 1852 he emigrated to America
and settled in Ohio. In 1858 he removed to Normal township, and settled on a farm 2 1/2 miles
northwest of Bloomington, where he lived until five years ago. He then moved to Normal to live
with his children. His wife died in 1895. They raised ten children, nine of whom survive.
They are: Mrs. Louis Lowentrout and Mrs. Fred Bohrer, of Bloomington; Jacob Ziegler, Jr., of
this city; Mrs. Klank, of Farmer City; Henry and Charles Ziegler, of Fonda, Ia.; Mrs. Kate
Henne, of Springfield; Mrs. Henry Kunch, of [DesMoines], Ia., and Louis Ziegler, of Spokane,
Wash. Mrs. Hazenwinkle, of Storm Lake, Ia., another daughter, died two years ago. A sister
of deceased also in Germany.
Mr. Ziegler was a devout member of the Lutheran church and a man who was held in the highest
esteem by all who knew him ....
Funeral services were held from the residence of his daughter, Mrs. Lewis Lowentrout, on
Tuesday afternoon at 2 o'clock. Interment at Bloomington cemetery.