1888 Necrologist Report
(Transcribed and copyrighted April 15, 2001, by Lawrence B. Peet, Joliet, Illinois. Permission granted to copy for non-commercial use only. All in Italics and upper case surnames are added to or modified from the original by the transcriber.)
(1888 Old Settlers’ Association of Will County, Necrology report, compiled by George H. Woodruff and printed in the Joliet Daily Republic and Sun, September 7, 1888, transcribed by Lawrence B. Peet.)
Old Settlers. — The Eighth Annual Reunion of the Will County Old Settlers Association a Success. —
There never dawned a fairer day than Wednesday, September 5, 1888, the date of the reunion of the old settlers of Will county.
There was a large attendance at the fair grounds, of the old people not only of Will county, but from other counties and states.
There never was such hearty greetings as those of yesterday; the former programme of having long speeches being done away with, and a sort of love feast being indulged in.
President DAGGETT called the meeting to order, after which the venerable elder BEGGS, invoked Divine blessing upon those assembled.
The chairman then announced that the ex-President, Geo H. WOODRUFF, had a presentation to make to the society. Thereupon, Mr. Woodruff came forward and spoke as follows:
Mr. President: Anticipating from a six year experience that you might find it difficult to keep the boys and girls in order, I have provided for you the proper instrument of your office. And thereby hangs a tale. This gavel, sir, is made from a piece of the frame of the old McKee mill, which was the nucleus of Joliet and the first enterprise in the DesPlaines valley. At the raising of this mill, fifty-four years ago, I assisted, and although at that time in the eyes of the law only a boy, I was big enough to “man a pike” and I will remember how hard we had to tug in order to raise the green oak bents in their places. The old shell of this mill is still standing, and you will see by this piece, that it is well seasoned, and hence there is no danger that this gavel will ever crack unless you crack it over the head of one of these frisky boys. And, sir, lest you might not always have an old boys head handy, or lest the head might be too tender to be sufficiently resonant to serve such purpose, I have also provided a block to receive the blows of this gavel. And thereby hangs another tale. This block is made from one of the logs of the old Reed-McGee house, the first house erected in Joliet. In that house I ate my first supper in Joliet. It was built by the pioneer, Charles REED but was then the residence of James McKEE and family, and then for the first time I drank Kentucky coffee and ate Kentucky hot biscuit and fried Hoosier bacon all prepared by Mrs. McKee herself. Of the many kindnesses received from the hands of “Jimmy” and “Sally” in after years, there are still living a few others besides myself who could discourse in grateful memories. This little dark spot in the centre was supplied by the maker and he assures me he has ample proof that it is a piece of Commodore Perry’s flag ship. These implements, sir, were fashioned by my friend James BOYNE, well known to many as a splendid player upon wind instruments and a skillful artist in wood, now living and working on Western Avenue. Jim is the son of the old time (1838) blacksmith of upper Bluff Street, who died long ago. Jim fully intended to have been born in Joliet, but owing to the shipwreck of the vessel in which his father and mother left the “auld countree,” he was erroneously born in Canada, a fact which he greatly regrets. But notwithstanding this mistake for which we can hardly blame him, Jim is a splendid cornetist and a skillful turner, as you see, and a “broth of a boy” beside. And now, Mr. President, I pass these handiworks of James, enriched by these historical associations, over into your custody. With their aid you ought to make a much better president than did your predecessor who had no such facilities.
Mr. Woodruff’s felicitous little address called forth rounds of applause.
President Daggett responded as follows:
“As the temporary presiding representative of the Old Settlers Organization of Will county, it is a genuine pleasure to be the medium through which the society receives these valuable and Memorable presents, and to express for them their heartfelt thanks to the respected ex-president of this association for the beautiful and useful articles he generously presents to them. They will be not only a pleasant aid to the presiding officers in the performance of their official duty, but a perpetual reminder of early incidents, early associations, and the primitive doings of the very earliest settlers of what is now
The Queen City of the DesPlaines.
They are received with genuine feelings of thankfulness, and high respect for the venerable donor. And on behalf of the Old Settlers’ of Will county, I hereby cordially tender to him the sincere and grateful thanks of the association.”
Dr. B. F. ALLEN read his annual report as secretary, which is a very interesting document. In connection with which he announced that he was compelled to sever his connection with the society, as he intended to made California his future home.
The doctor then introduced George Woodruff, necrologist, whose sad but interesting report was listened to with unusual interest by every one. His report as published below, is a valuable one for reference, but a sad one to contemplate, and is as follows:
Mr. President and Pioneers: — In the absence of our honorable secretary, who has been, for the good part of a year, renewing his youth on the Pacific Slopes, it has once more fallen to my lot to record the yearly inroads of the Great Reaper into the ranks of Will County pioneers.
That he has not been idle, since we last met the list of his victims which I have gathered will abundantly show, although it may not be complete. Our diminished ranks will also make it apparent that hereafter his works amongst pioneers must be “as the gleaning of grapes when the vintage is done.”
My hearers will remember that at our last anniversary, I had occasion to announce one death as having occurred the same morning. This year I have to record one as occurring on the day subsequent to our meeting, Sept. 8 (1887) – that of Samuel GOODSPEED, of Peotone, at the age of 75 years, 6 months and 15 days. Mr. Goodspeed was a brother of the Goodspeeds so prominent in Joliet history, and was born in Troy, N. Y., but removed with the family to Tennessee at the age of four years, where he lived until twenty years of age. He came west in 1835 and settled near Oswego on the Fox river. In 1836 he moved to Plainfield where he resided eighteen years. In 1855 he removed to Peotone and settled on the farm where he died. He married three times and was the father of twelve children. He was a school trustee fourteen years and supervisor of Peotone four years.
The day following, Sept., 9, (1887) occurred the death of George Paddock, a son of Walter PADDOCK, of Homer, and at his death 39 years of age. He was a thrifty farmer and a man of worth and integrity.
On the Sunday following, Sept. 11, (1887) we lost a valuable citizen in the extreme northwest corner of the county, John McMicken, supervisor of Wheatland. He was born in Ayreshire, Scotland, Jan. 1815, and died in the 72nd year of his life. He came to America in 1843 and purchased his farm at government price. He was a successful farmer, and was one whom his neighbors trusted and loved. He was town assessor twenty years; justice of the peace sixteen years, and supervisor, twelve years. He was a Republican in politics and Presbyterian in religion, being a member of the Presbyterian church of Aurora. He was well qualified to be a citizen of Zion. Ps. 15.
Mrs. J. D. Henderson.
On the following Friday, Sept. 16, (1887) died Helen M. (HENDERSON), wife of J. D. HENDERSON, of Wilmington. She was a daughter of Daniel JOHNSON, of New York, and married to Mr. Henderson in 1837, and came to Illinois in 1845. After a residence of about three years in Joliet, Mr. Henderson removed to Wilmington. Mrs. Henderson was the mother of two daughters, Helen L. (HENDERSON) wife of DR. CURTIS, of Wilmington, and Mary A. (HENDERSON), wife of Judge GARNSEY, of Joliet. Mrs. Henderson was seventy-one years of age.
John Hampton was born in the Isle of Man, with the century (1800) and died of old age at his home on Cassiday Avenue, the 24th day of September (1887). He had resided in our county forty years, mostly in the town of Florence. The railroad station south of Elwood was named after him. In 1848, he moved to Elwood, and in 1877 to Joliet. He was a good man.
Another resident of Florence, John Skehan, died at his residence at the age of seventy-six years, on Tuesday, October 18, 1887.
On Oct. 24, (1887) at his home three miles north of Lockport, Thomas Prior died, aged seventy-six.
Mrs. J. S. Farovid.
October 15, (1887) Mrs. John S. FAROVID, widow, died, aged seventy-five years. She was an old resident and mother of five children.
Mrs. H. OLNEY.
On Friday, November 18, (1887) after a long illness, died Mrs. Harriet Olney, widow of the late Hiram OLNEY, of Manhattan township, who died in 1880. Mrs. Olney was a native of Cayuga county, N. Y., and was born in 1803. At the age of twenty she was married to Hiram Olney and they came west in 1835 and settled in the neighborhood then known as Yankee settlement. She died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. George H. WARD. She was in early life a member of the Methodist church.
Mrs. B. VAN ALSTINE.
In the year 1835 or -6, there came to Kankakee a Mr. JENKINS and family, from Brooklyn, N. Y. With them came a bright young lady of the name of Elizabeth POST, who soon took captive Burk VAN ALSTEIN, of Channahon, whom she married in 1837. They resided in Channahon township for many years, removing a few years ago to Russell, Kansas. Mrs. Van Alstine made her old friends here a visit in the summer of 1837 (more likely, 1887-L.B. Peet), and soon after her return was stricken with paralysis, and died at her home in Russell, Nov. 21, 1887, at the age of seventy-six. “Aunt Libbie” was dearly loved by all who knew her. (Note: both spellings Van Alstine and Van Alstein are used. – L. B. Peet)
Harmon F. NICHOLSON.
On the 27th of Nov., at Topeka, Kansas, died Major Harmon F. Nicholson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Francis NICHOLSON, of 517 Exchange street. (Now West Jefferson Street, Joliet – L. B. Peet) He came to Illinois in 1835 when a small boy, with his parents, and here he was raised and educated. At the breaking out of the war of the Rebellion he was living in Michigan, and there he enlisted in the 12th Michigan cavalry, was chosen Lieutenant, and afterwards promoted Major. He was an efficient soldier, serving under Gen. Gordon GRANGER and Phil H. SHERIDAN. In a three weeks’ cavalry raid he received an injury of the spine which ultimately caused his death.
Mrs. J. PATTERSON.
At the family homestead, two and one half miles south of the city (Joliet), Sunday, Dec. 11, 1887, Mrs. Joseph Patterson died, aged 80 years and 2 months.
Miss Ella PATTERSON.
At the same place, ten days later, Ella, her daughter, died suddenly at the age of forty-five.
December 26, (1887), at the same house, died the father of the family, Joseph Patterson, at the age of eighty-seven. Thus at the pleasant home of Uncle Jo Patterson at the head of Lake Joliet, within less than one month, father, mother and daughter bade farewell to the things of the earth. Joseph Patterson was a native of Bainbridge, Georgia, a but when a lad went to Ovid, Cayuga county, N. Y., where he was married to the woman who, for nearly sixty years, walked side by side with him, life’s journey, until her death. Early in the thirties he removed to Ohio, and in 1845, to Illinois, settling first on the Shoemaker farm, which he purchased, until 1867, when he removed to his house on the bluff overlooking the Des Plaines Valley.
To Mr. and Mrs. Patterson were born thirteen children, five of whom survive. Pleasant and lovely were they in their lives and in death they were not long divided.
Albert N. HIGGINBOTHAM.
On Dec. 11, (1887), died Albert N. Higginbotham, in the fifty-seventh year of his age. He was born in Otsego county, N. Y., 1n 1831, and came with his father’s family to Illinois in 1834, The family settled on the farm near the Red Mill. At the breaking out of the late war, he enlisted in the 65th Illinois infantry, served four years and came out a captain. Previous to the war, in 1852, he went to California, where he staid until 1858. On his return from the war, he entered the employ of Field, Leiter & Company. In 1877 he returned to Joliet, since which time he held a position at the penitentiary until his death.
Mrs. C. H. Stuphen.
Two weeks after his death, Dec. 25, (1887), occurred that of his mother, Mrs. Rebecca STUPHEN, at her home on Cass street. Mrs. Stuphen’s maiden name was WHEELER. She was born in Columbia county, N. Y., May 11, 1810. In 1831, she was married to the late H. D. HIGGINBOTHAM, and they set up their home in Oneida, N. Y., and in June 1834, emigrated to Will county. The family removed to Joliet in 1854, where the father died in 1865. His widow married C. H. STUPHEN, Esq. In 1871, who is a cousin of her first husband. She had seven children by her first husband, all except Albert being born on the farm near the Red Mill. These children are all well known in Joliet, one being a member of the house of Marshall, Field & Co., Chicago.
Mrs. H. Bolton.
At her homestead near Plainfield, Dec. 22, (1887) died Elizabeth BOLTON, aged seventy-six years. She died of heart disease while sitting in her chair. She was the wife of Hugh BOLTON, and the mother of two sons, both of whom were soldiers, and one of whom died in Andersonvile (sic,) prison, and one daughter, wife of T. H. HUTCHINS, Esq. (See Woodruff’s book, Fifteen Years Ago, or the Patriotism of Will County. – L. B. Peet)
December 23, 1887, died at his residence (Six Corners), in Plainfield township, Samuel Goist, in the sixty-third year of his age. He was a native of Pennsylvania and came to Illinois in 1847.
Mrs. Joseph Campbell.
At the home of her daughter, Mrs. OSBORN, on John street, Mrs. Barbara CAMPBELL, widow of the late Joseph CAMPBELL, died at the age of eighty. Mrs. Campbell was born in Scotland. Her maiden name was Kelly. She was married in 1833, came to America with her husband in 1835, and in 1837 settled in Joliet, where Mr. Campbell engaged with the late Gov. MATTESON in canal contracts. They were the parents of six children, three sons and three daughters. Mr. and Mrs. Campbell were charter members of the Central church. (See next death: Tracy. – L. B. Peet)
At his home, 201 Beach street, (Joliet) Michael Tracy died at the age of eighty years. (No date given for his death. Since these last two reports follow one with a death date of December 23, 1887, and precede a report with a death date of January 19, 1888, and Mr. Woodruff generally follows a chronological order, my presumption is that he did not have dates for these reports and placed them at the end of the year — 1887. – L. B. Peet.)
Mrs. J. S. PALMER.
January 19, 1888, at her home near the Mound (Mound Joliet), died Mrs. J. S. Palmer, widow of the late Prof. Palmer. She was born in Otsego county, N. Y., and came here with her father’s family in 1835. She was a daughter of Charles W. BRANDON, one of our oldest settlers, who lived, until his death near the Mound. Her death was very sudden, and resulted from a stroke of apoplexy.
Mrs. John FIDDYMENT.
Mrs. John Fiddyment, widow, a native of England, who came to Joliet in 1839, died at the home of her son, Walter, in Lockport, Thursday morning, Jan. __, 1888, in the eighty-fourth year of her age.
Joel George, a native of Onondaga county, N. Y., came to Joliet with a young blooming wife in the fall of 1835, and did his first work in Joliet on the old stone block built by Mr. DEMMOND that season. After a little, he built for himself a modest little home on Oneida street, where he lived for many years pursuing his chosen trade. During the time he was coroner of the county six years. (’38 to ’44), and supervisor in 1855. He was a charter member of the Matteson Lodge, and the last one living before his death. Some years ago, while in the employ of the St. L. R. R., he received a serious injury to one of his hands which nearly proved fatal. On his recovery, he was given a position on the road at Bloomington, where he resided until the death of his wife a few years ago, since which he has lived with his son Charles (GEORGE), in Iowa, at whose house he died Jan. 17, (1888) in the eightieth year of his age. He was buried in Oakwood by the side of his wife.
Mrs. D. Kennelly.
Mrs./ Sarah KENNELLY died at her home in the town of Plainfield, January 26, 1888. She was a native of Center county, Pennsylvania, born June 9, 1820, was married to Daniel KENNELLY in 1842 and came to Will county in 1847.
Mrs. J. C. KERCHEVAL.
Mrs. J. C. Kercheval, widow of a well-known son of one of the oldest Will county families, died at her old home on Maple street, Feb. 7, 1888, aged sixty-eight years. Her maiden name was Anna ROUNDTREE, and she was born in North Carolina. She was married to Mr. Kercheval in Indiana , in 1838. She was the mother of eight children, all of whom survive her.
Mrs. Ann MAULY.
On the 11th of Feb., Mrs. Ann Mauly died, aged sixty-seven years. She was the sister of the late Rev. John INGOLDSBY, a former pastor of St. Patrick’s church. She was the widow of Mr. McEVOY, clerk of Will county from ’48 to ’51, when married to Mr. MAULEY. (Both spellings used. – L. B. Peet.)
In the latter part of the month of February, Joseph Link died at his home in Troy township near Truby’s landing, seven miles south of Joliet. Mr. Link was seventy-five years old, and had lived in the county nearly fifty years. He had celebrated with his wife their golden wedding in December last. He was a genial old man who left a large family and a large circle of friends to mourn his loss.
John L. WILSON.
We must not omit from our list John L. Wilson, of Chicago, who was a resident of our county for a few years, and a merchant here, and who built the old stone store on Ottawa street next to the engine house. He was often present at our reunions, and considered himself a pioneer of Will county as well as Chicago. He was one of the brothers who established the Chicago Evening Journal. He died in March aged seventy-six years.
(Elizabeth Fisher, Nathan Smith and Daniel Small.)
During the month of March, three aged citizens of Wilmington departed this life, viz.: Mrs. Elizabeth FISHER, aged ninety-two years; Nathan SMITH, over eighty years of age; and Daniel SMALL, seventy-six years of age. Mr. Small was very wealthy.
J. C. McCREARY.
In the township of Plainfield, Sec., 33, J. C. McCreary, a well-to-do farmer, died in April. He was born in Ben ton, Ontario county N. Y., July 1, 1810, and came to Will county in 1845.
Simeon B. TYLER.
Another old resident of Plainfield, Simeon B. Tyler, died May 9, 1888. He was born in Bethel, Sullivan county, N. Y., Feb. 23, 1811. He came to this state in 1835. Two of his sons, Alfred (TYLER) and Albert (TYLER), served in the late war, Co. D. 100th Illinois.
Thos. R. HUNTER.
April 22 (1888), occurred the death of and old well known and highly respected citizen of Joliet, Thos. R. Hunter. He was born in Sullivan county, N. Y., Feb. 2, 1818. He came to Joliet in 1837, and commenced work at his trade of blacksmithing on Bluff street. He went to California in 1850, was successful, and on his return, built the house on the corner of Oneida and Broadway, now owned by Mr. STRONG. He afterwards established a fruit farm on Morgan street, which is now being cut up into city lots. He married a daughter of Barton SMITH, Esq., in 1845, who died in 1882. Mr. Hunter was twice a member of the city council. He was an honest and upright man.
Rodney D. HATCH.
Sunday night, May 13, 1888, occurred the death of Rodney D. Hatch, aged about sixty-eight years. His health has been failing for some months.
Mr. Stephen GOODENOW.
June 29, 1888, at Garfield, Neb., at the age of seventy-six years, Mr. Stephen Goodenow, formerly a resident of Monee, Ill., died. He was born in Oneida county, N. Y., in 1812. He settled in Monee in 1844. A son, Corinthus GOODENOW, of Co. A, 65th Illinois, died at Marietta, Ga. In 1864.
Geo. A. LANG.
Geo. A. Lang, eldest son of Thos. J. LANG, of Plainfield, met a painful death, Thursday afternoon, June 26, 1888. He was in the employ of the Santa Fe railroad and was under a car fixing it, when the train moved before he could escape, passing over him and crushing one side in a horrible manner. Geo. A. Lang was born in the town of Plainfield fifty years ago last March. He served three years as a member of Co. D, 100th Illinois, and leaves a widow and three children to mourn his untimely cutting off.
Cyrus N. ASHLEY.
June 4, 1888, at his home on Sherman street, Cyrus N. Ashley, one of our best citizens. He was born in Lewis county, N. Y., and came with his father’s family to Plainfield in 1837, where he resided until he came to Joliet in 1875 and engaged in the manufacture of barbed wire. He was a member of the Baptist church, and a son of the well known pioneer, Elder ASHLEY.
Mrs. S. R. RATHBURN.
June 7, 1888, at the home of her daughter, Mrs. HYLAND, of Plainfield, died Mrs. Maria Rathburn, widow of the late S. R. RATHBURN. She was born in Florida, Montgomery county, New York, and was aged eighty=-one years, four months and four days. She was married to S. R. Rathburn in 1827, and moved to DuPage township in 1842. They were the parents of fourteen children, nine of whom were living at her death. One son, Hiram (RATHBURN), of Co. D. 100th Illinois, died at Nashville, She served well her generation and it was tim to “fall on sleep.”
Mrs. J. ELDERKEN.
Saturday, June 16, 1888, at her home, in Joliet, died Mary A. Elderken, widow of Joseph ELDERKEN. She was born in 1800, in Sussex Co. N. J. She had resided in Will county forty-two years, living first in Jackson township, but for the last twenty-five years in Joliet.
Mrs. Wm. SANBORN.
Sunday night, July 15, 1888, in the town of Lockport, on the west side of the river, on the farm which had been her home for fifty-four years, died Mrs. Catherine Sanborn, wife of Wm. SANBORN. Mrs. Sanborn was born in Schoharie Co., N. Y., March 22, 1809. Her maiden name was (Catherine) SMITH. She was married in Sept., 1823, to Justice TAYLOR, a native of the state of New York, residing in Chautauqa Co., N. Y. In 1833, Mr. Taylor came west “prospecting,” and made his claim on sections 3 and 4, in township 36, N. R. 10 e., 500 acres, now in the town of Lockport. On this he built his log cabin, and thither he brought his family in 1834. On the same spot he afterwards built a comfortable frame house. Mr. Taylor died in 1847, leaving eight children. Four of these enlisted in the late war, and two of them left their bones in the sunny south. In 1850 the widow was married to Wm. Sandborn, an old settler in the town of Plainfield. By him she had one son.
Mrs. Wm. ADAMS.
On the same Sunday occurred the death of Mrs. Harriet Adams, at Chicago, at the age of 78 years. She was born in Painesville, Ohio. Her maiden name was (Harriet) KING. She was first married to Mr. VAN BUSKIRK, of Painesville, by whom she had three children, a young man who died here many years ago, and two daughters well known in Joliet. She was married to Mr. Wm. ADAMS in 1849, and with her husband, was many years keeper and proprietor of the National Hotel, in its palmiest days, when it was a celebrated hostelrie. Mrs. Adams was, while living here, a very active member of Christ Church, Episcopal, and her old pastor, Rev. LOCKE, D. D., officiated at her burial in Oakwood. Scattered up and down the land are many who remember her not only on account of the good dinners she provided, but for her many social and neighborly virtues as well.
Mrs. H. H. SPOOR.
July 14, 1888, at her home in Elwood, died Mrs. H. H. Spoor, at the age of about sixty years. She was the daughter of the late Charles STARR, of Starr’s Grove, in the town of Florence, and sister of Judge STARR, of Kankakee. Mrs. Spoor resided many years in Joliet, on Cass street, and many friends, both in Joliet and Elwood, heard of her death with sorrow.
July 17, 1888, died suddenly at his residence, corner of Washington street and York avenue, Jeremiah Pratt, aged 79 years and 8 months. Mr. Pratt was born in Addison, Vt., Oct. 1, 1808, and was first married to Miss Eliza RANDALL, by whom he had three sons. In 1840 he was married to Mrs. Esther COOPER, who survives him. The well known musical composer and three other children were the fruit of his second marriage. He moved to Plainfield in 1848 and engaged in farming and afterwards in merchandise. He moved to Joliet in 1863 and has since resided here.
Henry J. KARCH.
July 19, 1888, near Frankfort Station, died Henry J. Karch, a native of Odenbach, Bavaria, born in the year 1808. He came to America in 1838 and settled in Herkimer county, N. Y. In 1848 he came to Will county and purchased the farm on which he has since lived until his death. He was a member of the German Methodist Church, and a highly respected and influential citizen. He gave his oldest son to the cause of the Union. Henry A. KARCH, of Co. A. 100th Infantry regiment was one of the killed on the field of Chickamauga, Sept. 19, 1863.
In the year 1836, our township received an important addition to its population. Jonathan Muncey, John E. WARD, James, STEVENS, H. SHORTS, Eban JONES, and Thomas CULBERTSON, all from the little state of Delaware, took up their residence here, locating in the eastern part of the township (Joliet Twp.). The death of Mr. Muncey, which occurred July 24, 1888, leaves Mr. Culbertson the only survivor of the six. Mr. Muncey bought a claim, sec. 13, the claim to which he afterwards obtained at the sale of canal lands. He was born in Kent county, Delaware. After coming here he worked at his trade of carpentering, and built the old Wheeler house still standing near the Red Mill. He also built the first house at Five Mile Grove for Ephraim PERKINS. Mr. Muncey was an industrious, quiet, reliable citizen, well known and highly regarded by all our older citizens. He was at his death, almost eighty-nine years old.
Mrs. Betsy EDDY.
Mrs. Betsy (Eddy), widow of Eli EDDY (who died in 1872) died at the residence of her son, Capt. H. G. EDDY, in Lockport, July 21, ’88. Mrs. Eddy, whose maiden name was (Betsy) DAVIS, was born in Princeton, Mass., and married in 1824. The family came to Lockport in 1838. Mrs. Eddy had reached the ripe age of eighty-eight years and eleven months. She was the mother of five children, three of whom are still living.
Mrs. Ruth LEFFER.
At Frankfort, on Friday August 3, (1888), died Mrs. Ruth Leffer, at the age of seventy-six years. She was one of the pioneers of that township, and warmly beloved by her friends and acquaintances.
Richard Talbot was one of the old canalers, who were brought to this region by the work on the Illinois & Michigan canal. After leaving the work, he obtained the title to the S. E. qr. Of Sec. 14, T. 35, R. 9E. Here he established a model farm, and for many years raised the abundant crops which made him independent. He was a man of integrity and strong character, and much respected by his neighbors. A few years since he moved into the city, where he died on the second of August, aged seventy-eight years.
Mrs. Julia CONLIN.
Another of our old Irish friends, the wife of Edward CONLIN, of Troy, whom we have known for over fifty years, died August 20, 1888, aged seventy-eight years. She was once well known on the bluff as Mrs. FLANNIGAN.
With this name we close our list at the number of fifty. It is probable that some names which ought to have been included have escaped our notice: Of the number recorded, thirty-eight had passed the limit of three score and ten, and fifteen at least of these the limit of four score years. The countries of Scotland, England, Ireland, Isle of Man, Germany and Bavaria, and the states of Vermont, New York, New Jersey, Massachuotts, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Tennessee, Ohio, North Carolina, Indiana and Illinois furnished their widely sepraated birth places, from whence their various paths converged to Will county, which in her several “God’s acres” has cheerfully given quiet resting places to what was mortal in them, without caring what their birthplace or their worldly condition, or political or religious creed. They have now emigrated to a country from whence no one has ever come back, to tell us what are its attractions, or advantages, what are its recreations or employments, or perchance, what are its discomforts, its disappointments, or its disasters. But these particulars we, the surviving pioneers of Will county, will soon learn, each for himself or herself. This much is certain in respect to both to those who have crossed the dark river, and those who still linger on the hither shore, that in that country neither will be pioneers. In conclusion, I have for your thought these lines by Mary Mapes DODGE:
“The child who enters life, comes not with knowledge or intent,
So those who enter death must go as little children sent.
Nothing is known; but I believe that God is overhead,
And as life is to the living, so death is to the dead.”
Mr. Woodruff was followed by Judge OLIN, who made a very able and interesting address, which was listened to with rapt attention by the large audience, and at its close was heartily applauded.
(Judge Olin speech was printed in its entirety on page 1 of the September 8, 1888 edition of the Republic & Sun. – L. B. Peet.)