1918 Annals - Knox County


Knox County was named after General Henry Knox and was established as a county, January 13, 1825.

Knox county has had several and varied shapes. Under the division of Illinois, made in 1790, more than the east half of that part of the State south of the Illinois river was known as Knox county. Changes and further subdivisions were made in 1793, 1801, 1803, 1809 Then the name drops out. In the subdivisions of 1801, 1803 and 1809, its territory was included in St. Clair county. In 1812 and 1813, the subdivision covering much the same ground, was called Madison county, and in this the Knox territory was included until 1821, when that part of the State lying between the Illinois and Mississippi river was called Pike county. In 1823, Pike county was cut down, and Fulton county was laid out so as to include the south four townships of Knox. The rest of the land comprising Knox county and the territory north and east was attached to Fulton county for judicial purposes.

January 13, 1825, Knox county was formed by act of the legislature, covering the same territory as at present (the four townships at the south being accorded it), save that the four north townships were attached to Henry county. This gave Knox sixteen townships. In 1831, however, the row of townships on the north was restored to Knox and two on the east were added. March 2, 1839, these two east two townships were allotted Stark county. This change in the boundaries of the county occasioned interesting incidents of travel, business and politics in the early history of this section.

The land comprising Knox County has been under ten territorial jurisdictions, two of them being under extinct races, one under the Indian race, one under France, one under England, one under Virginia, one a territory of the United States, one the territory of Indiana, one the territory of Illinois and lastly, the State of Illinois.

The history of Knox county is one that reflects honor on Illinois for it has been marked by devotion to high ideals. Illinois was originally a part of the northwest territory which by the ordinance of 1787 was made free soil. As a county of the State Knox has shared this blessing. Illinois was admitted to the Union in 1818, and the issuance of this book is to commemorate the centennial of that event. By the act of June 30, 1821, Pike county was created, including the area north and west of the Illinois river. By the act of February 10, 1826, Knox

County was attached to Fulton county for governmental purposes. May 15, 1830, a public meeting was held at the store of S. S. White, in Henderson, to consider the question of county organization. Dr. Hansford and John G. Sanburn, were authorized to address a petition for the organization of Knox county to Richard M. Young, judge of the Fifth Judicial Circuit. This petition was presented to Judge Young at Lewistown by Pennington, Hansford, Stephen Osborn, the first sheriff and Phillip Hash, and the judge was convinced that the county contained 350 inhabitants, the number required by law, and on June 10, 1830, he declared the county organized, and fixed the date of the first election at July 3, 1830. This was held at the home of Jacob Gum, four miles northwest of Galesburg, the whole county forming one election precinct.
The First Government

Under the constitution of 1818, county government was committed to three commissioners. On July 3, 1830, when the county was organized, Riggs Pennington, Philip Hash, and Charles Hansford were elected, to serve until their successors were elected the following month. They first met at the home of John B. Gum, appointed him clerk, but he, declining to serve, two days later they again met and appointed John G. Sanburn clerk, and Mr. Gum treasurer. On July 17th, the commissioners met again and divided Knox County into two precincts for the coming election, one precinct being known as the Henderson and the other as the Spoon River district. At the election on August 2, 1830, the first board of commissioners for a stated term was elected, the successful candidates being Riggs Pennington, Philip Hash and Alexander Frakes, while Stephen Osborn was elected sheriff. Thus Knox county, organized and empowered to choose its own officers and collect its own taxes, started on its political career. The commissioners had general supervision of the affairs of the county. By the same law which defined its boundaries and located its county seat, Henry county was attached to it for governmental purposes and so remained until 1837. It was an economical and judicious system. The county was then in its primitive state, and roads had to be laid out and constructed, bridges had to be built, a jail and court house had to be provided and other large works undertaken, all of which seems to have been efficiently done.
Government By Judges

By the constitution of 1848, the offices of county commissioners and probate justice were abolished, and the office of county judge created. On him and two associate judges was the power previously exercised by the commissioners in county government, conferred. George S Lanphere was elected county judge, and Alfred Brown of Henderson and James M. Hunter of Salem were elected associate judges, November 6,

1849, and they served four years. Their last meeting was held on March 4, 1853. The county on April 5, 1853, adopted township organization and elected supervisors. It has since remained under this system. There had been two previous attempts to change the county government, one on November 6, 1849, and one on November 5, 1850, but as tbe majority secured was not a majority of all the votes ca'^t af these elections, the proposition failed to carry.
Township Organization

It was shortly after the election of 1849 or on January 14, 1850, that the people of the townships met to select the names for their respective townships. The present names were adopted save these of Cedar, Haw Creek, Copley and Elba. The names chosen for these were respectively. Cherry Grove, Ohio, Ritchfield and Liberty, but these the Secretary of State refused to register and they were accordingly changed to the names they now bear.

The first members of the board of supervisors, twenty in number, met June 5, 1853, and elected Daniel Meek as chairman. Following are the names of the members of the historic First Board:

Indian Point ~ Daniel Meek
Cedar ~ E. P. Dunlap
Henderson ~ Peter Franz
Rio ~ R. Heflin
Chestnut ~ Samuel Collins
Orange ~ Asa Haynes
Sparta ~ T. H. Taylor
Ontario ~ Ed Crane
Maquon ~ J. M. Foster
Haw Creek ~ W. M Clark
Persifer ~ G. W. Manley
Copley ~ J. O. Stanley
Walnut Grove ~ Ames Ward
Salem ~ S. S. Buffum
Elba ~ J. H. Nicholson
Truro ~ A. Lapham
Victoria ~ J. L. Larnagan
Lynn ~ J. M. Hodgson
Knox ~ I. P. West
Galesburg ~ W. S. Gale

Honor is due the memory of this first board for building so well the foundations on which the business of the county has been conducted.
Growth of County Business

The business of Knox County is now conducted from Galesburg, the county seat, and its place of business is the stately Court House Square with its beautiful embellishments of lawn and trees And still John B. Gum's log cabin on Section 32 in Henderson township was the first seat of justice in the county and was so designated by the commissioners on July 9, 1830. It was a one-story, two-room log structure and was used for county purposes until January 15, 1831. By a law passed January 15, 1831, the county seat was fixed in Knox Township, where the commissioners platted a village, that they first called Henderson, and which afterward was changed to Knoxville. March 12, 1831, the commissioners contracted with William Lewis to erect a log court house and with Parnach Owen to finish it. The total cost was $395.43. This lumber structure was 28 feet long, twenty-five feet wide, and two stories high. It was occupied in October, 1832, It was soon outgrown and on March 14, 1838, Zelotes Cooley and Alvah Wheeler took the contract for the erection of a new building at Knoxville which was completed May 1, 1840. At the time it was regarded as one of the handsomest buildings in the State, and it is still attractive because of its classical lines. It was the scene of many noted legal battles, and men, who subsequently became famous in State and Nation appeared in cases there. A crude jail was built in 1832 and in 1840 another was erected by Alvah Wheeler. Also on the court house ground at Knoxville was built in 1854 a fire-proof building containing two rooms.
County Seat Contest

Meanwhile Galesburg, due to its railroad facilities, was in population outstripping Knoxville, and there grew up a demand for the removal of the county seat to the larger city. A long and acrimonious contest ensued that lasted for years. The r--'al battle started with the passage of a bill introduced by W. S. Gale, of Galesburg, then a member of the Legislature, for the removal of the county seat. This bill became a law. The election under it was held in April, 1869, but the issues were not settled until January, 1873, when the Supreme Court of Illinois upheld the contention of Galesburg. Through the efforts of friends of Knoxville another election was called and was held on November 11, 1873, which resulted in favor of Galesburg by a vote of 3,785 to 3,309. This ended the controversy.

Under the stipulations by Galesburg, the county was to furnish a place for holding court for ten years, a site for a court house to be constructed in the future, a site for a jail and $20,000 toward its erection, to provide a site and fire-proof building for a clerk's office, and to pay the expenses of the transfer of the effects of the county to Galesburg, all of which conditions were honorably and satisfactorily met.
The Court House

The movement for the erection of a court house on the park site provided began in 1883 with the appointment of a committee to report a resolution. A building committee was appointed, consisting of W. S. Gale, A. G. Charles, William Robson, John Sloan, M. B. Hardin and William H. Leighton. The next year the place of Mr. Charles, who was no longer a member of the Board, was filled by R. W. Miles, and a year still later, L. A. Townsend succeeded M. B. Hardin The plans of E. E. Myers of Chicago were preferred, bids were finally passed on October 3, and the contract was let to Dawson & Anderson of Toledo, Ohio, for $114,311.52. The corner-stone was laid June 24, 1885, under the auspices of the Masonic Grand Lodge of Illinois. The edifice was completed January 26, 1887. The cost all furnished was $156,261, and when completed it was practically paid for. The building is of Berea sandstone, of a pleasing and impressive style of architecture, and contains all rooms necessary for the conduct of all phases of the county business.

The jail was built earlier by Ira K. Stevens in 1874, for $34,900, and Hon. A. W. Berggren was the first sheriff to occupy it.
The County Home

Another fine institution that the county has maintained for over sixty years is the County Home at Knoxville. For twenty-five years after the organization of the county paupers were farmed out to the lowest bidders. With the adoption of the township system, the board of supervisors bought an almshouse site for $3,000 of M, G. Smith. The farm house was converted into an almshouse but proved a wretched makeshift. In 1866 the Board of Supervisors determined to erect a new almshouse and R. W. Miles, L. E. Conger and Cephas Arms were appointed a committee on building. After some competition between Galesburg members and Knoxville, the present site, adjoining the old poor farm and comprising then 69 acres, was purchased for $5,340. The contract for the main building was let to William Armstrong for $26,000 and its equipment and stocking of the farm brought the total to $39,037.21. Parry & Stevens built the east wing for $17,400. An insane annex was erected in 1890 for $26,459 by Peter Munson, and in 1899 an insane annex for females was built by Munson & Tingleaf at a total cost of $32,000. A new laundry building was built in 1899 by F. W. Hawkin for $16,000. The entire group of buildings is one of the handsomest in the state and the grounds have been developed along artistic lines. Many improvements on and in the buildings have been made from time to time, so that they are supplied with modern facilities.
Growth of Population

The Indians were in Illinois before the Whites and the early settlers of the county were not unmindful of their presence. The Foxes, Sacs, Kickapoos and Pottawatomies roved over the prairies and their trails were used by the early settlers. In the vicinity of Maquon another tribe lived. The flint implements of the Aboriginies are still found in many parts of the county. There are traces of a still earlier race supposed to be identified with the mound builders.

Daniel and Alexander Robinson and Richard Mathews, who came to the county and settled in the edge of Henderson Grove in February, 1828, are credited with being the first permanent settlers, although there is a report that a man named Palmer, a bee hunter, lived in Maquon township in 1826-27. It is certain that the first considerable migrations came from Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia, and that they were a substantial and worthy element. The tide of immigration from the east set in in 1836 and with the coming of the Galesburg colony in 1836, the movement of population was accelerated.

Meanwhile in the early annals of the county, the Black Hawk War from 1831 to 1833, growing out of the belief of the Indians that they had been unfairly dealt with, was the outstanding event. In this county a company was raised, to assist in the war, and several forts were erected, one known as Fort Aggie, on Section 27, in Rio township; Fort Lewis, on Section 33, Henderson township; an unnamed fort on Section 10, in Henderson township, and one in Orange township. No harm came to the settlers, although the period was one of much stress and many alarms.

In addition to the immigration from the South and East following the founding of Henderson, Knoxville and Galesburg and the founding of Knox College, the establishment of government, and the improvement of highways, there came groups of foreigners. The Swedes appear to have been first on the field, John Hedstrom arriving in Victoria as early as 1838. But the steady stream did not set in until the completion of the C., B. & Q. railroad to Galesburg in 1854, from which time for several years the growth was rapid. This transportation enterprise with the branches soon afterward constructed from Galesburg and making access to markets easy, gave a tremendous impetus to agriculture, to the building up of towns, and to industrial interests- Settlement, before desultory, now became rapid. Educational and religious growth kept pace. The large Swedish emigration was augmented by sturdy colonists from Scotland, by the warm-hearted and eager companies from Ireland, and by the quotas from Germany and England. The following figures speak eloquently of the growth of the county:

Date ~ Population

1830 ~ 400
1840 ~ 7,080
1850 ~ 13,279
1860 ~ 28,663
1870 ~ 39,522
1880 ~ 38,344
1890 ~ 38,752
1900 ~ 43,612
1910 ~ 46,159
1920 ~ 46,678

This shows that for two decades between 1870 and 1890 the population was nearly stationary. The building of the Santa Fe late in the 80's and other causes again produced a steady growth in population.

The fact that in the county there was previous to the Civil War a strong anti-slavery sentiment caused a movement of Negroes this way, and this continued after the Civil War, resulting in a large Negro population, especially in Galesburg, where the Negroes have their own churches and where they have proved an industrious and useful element.

Of late years the character of immigration has changed. That from Sweden, Ireland, Scotland and England has become negligible, while that from the southern part of Europe predominates. In Galesburg, more than in any other part of the county, these concentrate. Italians, Hungarians, Roumanians, Greeks and many others not listed in the census. Mexican laborers have in considerable degree supplanted other races on the railroads. It is this large need of common labor that is in great measure responsible for this draft on Southern Europe. The fact that they are proving a worthy element is dissipating the prejudice first created.
The Municipalities

Following are the dates of platting and founding of the municipalities of the county:

Rio ~ Platted in 1871
Oneida ~ Sept. 1, 1854
Altona ~ 1854
Victoria ~ May 11, 1849
Wataga ~ In Spring of 1854
Henderson ~ June 11, 1835
Knoxville ~ Aug. 7, 1830
Appleton ~ Spring, 1888
Dahinda ~ Summer, 1888
Williamsfield ~ April 24, 1888
Gilson ~ July 10, 1857
Belong ~ 1882
Abingdon ~ 1836
St. Augustine ~ 1854
Hermon ~ May 3, 1842
Rapatee ~ 1883
Maquon ~ Oct. 24, 1836; Inc., 1857
Douglas ~ Oct. 17, 1856
Uniontown ~ June 4, 1839
Yates City ~ Oct- 20, 1857

The influence of railroad construction is clearly evident in the foregoing.
Statistics of Population

The following figures of the population of the county and townships as given in the census returns of 1890, 1900, 1910 and 1920 will be found interesting.
These figures show that in 1890, there lived in the municipalities of the county 22,166 people, and on the farms, 15,586; in 1900, there lived on the farms 16,700 and in the municipalities, 27,412 in 1910, the municipal population was 30,933 and the farm 12,679, and in 1920, the municipal population is 32,347 and the farm population is 14,363.
The Religious Growth

The early settlers of Knox county, no matter what their origin were religiously inclined, and in an early day the movement for the establishment of churches gained momentum. According to some, the Methodists were first in the field, and organized a society in the neighborhood of Abingdon in 1829 and 1830, from which the Methodist church at Abingdon developed. In 1836 and 1837, the First Presbyterian church was organized by the Galesburg colonists and this afterward grew into the Old First Church, with Congregational tendencies. The county within the next twenty years became a field for active missionary effort and by 1860 the religious work of the county was fully organized. Some of the early pioneer churches no longer exist, but there is no denying that the county is well supplied with all needful agencies for effective religious work.

As many as sixty-five churches have done Christian work in its confines and nearly all of these are in operation at the present time. In addition in some communities, there have been occasional services and Sunday Schools have been maintained in many communities where there were no churches.

The Knoxville Presbyterian Church was organized in 1835. The Lutherans began their fine work in 1851, when the first Lutheran Church of Galesburg was organized. The first Episcopalian church was that in Knoxville, organized in 1843. The first Catholic parish in the county was formed at St. Augustine in 1844. The Baptists organized a church in Galesburg in 1848. The Universalists formed a congregation in Galesburg in 1857. Christian Scientists organized in Galesburg in 1886. The Abingdon Congregational Church dates back to 1835 and the Victoria to 1841. Among the later comers are the United Brethren, the Jewish Church in Galesburg, the Salvation Army, the Seven Day Adventists and the Latter Day Saints.

The Methodists probably lead at present in the number of congregations in the county, with the Congregationalists next.

The coming of the railroad gave added impetus to the organization of religious work in the county, and many churches date from about that time.

There have been during the nearly ninety years since Christian work began in Knox county many revivals, some of them of great magnitude and large results.

It is a matter of historical interest that the first Swedish Methodist church in the United States was organized in Victoria.
School Development

The educational facilities of Knox county are equaled by but a few in the Central West. Colleges, Academies, High Schools, Community Schools, Township High Schools and the County Schools, all combine to furnish close at hand the means of mental growth and acquisition. All this has taken place since Franklin B. Barber taught school at Henderson Grove in 1830. The real development began with the appointment of William McMurtry as commissioner to sell lands in this county for school purposes under the act of 1831. The first school district land formed was that of 1837 at Log City, the second was the Hague district, south of Galesburg. Indian Point district was the third.

The system of Public Schools was created by the Act of 1855. More direct supervision of the schools began that year under P. H. Sanford, afterward county judge. At the present time this office of county superintendent of schools is ably filled by Walter F. Boyes.

The first High School in the county was that established in Galesburg in 1 867 and it was in that early day regarded as a remarkable achievement.

The following shows the present status of the schools of the county:

Knox County School Facts

Number of persons under 21 years of age ~ 16,002
Number of persons of school age, to twenty-one ~ 11,517
Number enrolled in elementally schools ~ 8,087
In High schools ~ 1,542
Total enrollment ~ 9,629

High school enrollment is 16% of total.

Number of school buildings ~ 192
Number of one-room schools in session this year ~ 151
Number of High schools ~ 11
District High schools ~ 3
Township High schools ~ 2
Community High Schools ~ 4
Three year High Schools in Non-High school district ~ 2
Total number of teachers ~ 384

High Schools:
District — Galesburg, Knoxville, Abingdon
Township — Altona, Gilson.
Community — Oneida, Wataga, Williamsfield, Yates City.
In Non-High School District — Maquon, Victoria.

Community Consolidated districts are being organized around Victoria, Rio and Rapatee.

Supplementing this fine and developing system are the following colleges and academic institutions, with the dates of their charters or origin:

Knox College — Galesburg, 1837
Lombard College — Galesburg, February 15, 1851.
Hedding College — Abingdon, 1851.
St. Mary's School— Knoxville, 1868.
St. Alban's School— Knoxville, 1890.
St. Martha's School— Knovxille, 1914
Brown's Business College — Galesburg, 1864.
St. Joseph's Academy — Galesburg, 1879.
Corpus Christi College — Galesburg, 1893.
St. Mary's School— Galesburg, 1907.

In addition the Galesburg Lutherans have maintained from an early day a parochial school.

The group of Episcopal institutions at Knoxville, St Mary's, St. Alban's and St. Martha's were founded by Rev. C. W. Leffingwell, D. D.

The three Catholic institutions of Galesburg were promoted by the Rev. Father Joseph Costa.
Railroads of Knox County

The first railroad in Knox county was that extending from Chicago to Galesburg and completed in 1854 and developing later into the C, B. & Q. For years subsequently railroad development was confined in this county largely to the construction through it of the branches of the Burlington, for all of which Galesburg became a division point. In 1882, there reached here from Havana, the Fulton County Narrow Gauge, afterward acquired by the Burlington. In 1887-8, the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe completed and began operating its line from Kansas City to Chicago. The county is thus traversed by two great trunk railroad lines. In addition the Iowa Central built in 1879-80, extends through the southwestern part of the county and the C. R. I. & P. through the northeastern part.
Knox County in War

Knox county has had a glorious part in the wars in which this country has engaged It is believed that in its cemeteries repose the bodies of soldiers of every war from the Revolutionary down. For years this city was the headquarters of the meetings of the Illinois Mexican war veterans.

In the Civil War, according to a careful compilation made by the late Albert J. Perry, Knox County furnished 4,200 men, distributed among 190 companies and 82 regiments. Of this number 123 were killed, and 168 wounded, 344 died and 96 were incarcerated in rebel prisons. In bounties and aid to the families of soldiers, the county contributed $400,000.

To the war with Spain, the county sent two companies of the Illinois National Guard, Company C. of Galesburg, commanded by Captain T. L. McGirr and Company D, of Abingdon, in charge of Captain Frank W. Latimer. These companies served in the Porto Rico campaign Subsequently Captain McGirr and a number of men from this county took part in the Phillipine Campaign.

The War With Germany

The war with Germany is a recent memory and Knox county's part will in every detail be found treated in a volume edited by S. A. Wagoner, and having the assistance of a committee of citizens. Briefly, as nearly as can be ascertained the county furnished 2,200 of its young men for this war, about one-half of whom volunteered, and the rest saw service under the selective conscription act. Many of these engaged in active warfare. Galesburg's Company C was one of the first of the Illinois National Guard organizations to respond. Some of the soldier boys paid the supreme sacrifice. A good many sustained wounds, and many were in the thick of the fighting. The county feels great pride in their patriotic achievements.

The county by its response to the call of the government for funds also gave its soldiers the most substantial backing. This is indicated by the following tables showing the total contributions to each of the four Liberty Loans and the Victory Loan:

First $ 923,180 $ 659,600 Not Known
Second 1,288,030 1,698,250 7,000
Third 1,256,640 2,229,600 10,557
Fourth 2,506,900 2,659,900 14,326
Victory 1,958,450 2,367,050 6,980
Totals $7,933,200 $9,614,400

One must add to the foregoing the large sums contributed to the Y. M. C. A., the Red Cross, the Salvation Army and the other lines of work to get the full measure of the county's willingness.
It's Political History

Knox county has had an honorable history in the politics of the districts with which it has been affiliated and in the State and Nation many of its residents have held positions of prominence. Its citizens have served abroad in diplomatic capacities, in Congress, in influential State positions and in the State Legislature. The service rendered has been of a high type and has reflected honor on the county.

At the present time Knox county is in the Forty-third Senatorial district, comprised of Fulton and Knox counties, and in the Fifteenth Congressional district, composed of Adams, Schuyler, Fulton, Knox and Henry counties. It is in the Fifth Supreme Court district, the Second Appellate Court district and the Ninth Judicial circuit.
In Congress

Following is a list of Knox county men who have served in Congress:

John H. Lewis, Knoxville, 1881-1883.
P S. Post, 1887-1889; 1889-1891; 1891-1893; 1893-1895; re-elected but died January 6, 1895, when entering on fifth term.
George W. Prince, 1895-1897; 1897-1899; 1899-1901; 19011903; 1903-1905; 1905-1907; 1907-1909; 1909-1911; 1911-1913. Nine terms.
Stephen A. Hoxworth, 1913-1915.
Edward J. King, 1915-1917; 1917-1919; 1919-1921.
In Constitutional Convention

Joshua Harper represented Knox county in the Constitutional Convention of 1847.

W. S. Gale was a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1862.

Alfred M. Craig was a member of the Constitutional Convention of 1870.

George Candee Gale is a member of the present Constitutional Convention.
In the Legislature

At various times Knox county has been hitched up in Legislative districts with Fulton, Mercer, Warren and Henderson counties, but since the last re-appointment it has been united with Fulton, and the district has been well satisfied. The changes in the number of the districts are due to the reapportionments from time to time.

The following shows the Knox county men who have served in the Legislature:

Tenth General Assembly, 1836-1838— Peter Butler, represented Warren, Knox and Henry counties; William McMurtry from Knox in House.

Twelfth General Assembly, 1840-1842— Member of House, John Denny.

Thirteenth General Assembly, 1842-1844 — Senator, William McMurtry; Member of House, Julius Manning.

Fourteenth General Assembly, 1844-1846 — Senator, William McMurtry; Members of House, H Hardie, Julius Manning.

Fifteenth General Assembly, 1846-1848— Senator, John Denny; Members of House, Ephriam Gilmore, Charles Hansford.

Sixteenth General Assembly, 1848-1850 — President of Senate, William McMurtry; 19th district Senator, John Denny; 41st district. Member of House, Henry J. Runkel.

Seventeenth General Assembly, 1850-1852 — President of Senate, Wm. McMurtry; 19th District Senator, John Denny; 41st District, Member of House, Henry Arms.

Eighteenth General Assembly, 1852-1854— 41st District, Member of House, Thomas McKee.

Nineteenth General Assembly, 1854-1856 — 58th District, Member of House, Samuel W. Brown, Knox.

Twentieth General Assembly, 1856-1858— 58th District, member of House, David H. Frisbie.

Twenty-first General Assembly, 1858-1860— 58th District, Member of House, Rufus W. Miles.

Twenty-second General Assembly, 1860-1862— 58th District, Member of House, A- A. Smith.

Twenty-third General Assembly, 1862-1864— 15th District, Member of Senate, Albert C. Mason; 34th District, Member of House, Joseph M. Holyoke.

Twenty-fourth General Assembly, 1864-1866— 15th District, Member of Senate, Albert C. Mason; 34th District, Member of House, Joseph M Holyoke.

Twenty-fifth General Assembly, 1866-1868— 34th District, Member of House, John Gray.

Twenty-sixth General Assembly, 1868-1870— 34th District, Member of House, W. Selden Gale.

Twenty-seventh General Assembly, 1870-1872— 15th District, Member of Senate, Henry J. Vaughn; 68th District, Members of House, 0. F. Price, Joseph F. Latimer, Patrick H. Sanford.

Twenty-eighth General Assembly, 1872-1874— 22nd District, Senator, Patrick H. Sanford; Member of House, Jacob S. Chambers-

Twenty-ninth General Assembly, 1874-1876 — Senator, Patrick H. Sanford; Members of House, John H. Lewis, Curtis N. Harvey.

Thirtieth General Assembly, 1876-1878— Members of House, Alfred S. Curtis, Joseph F. Latimer, Abraham M. Brown.

Thirty-first General Assembly, 1878-1880— 23rd District, Members of House, Rufus W. Miles, Joseph F. Latimer, John Sloan.

Thirty-second General Assembly, 1880-1882— 22nd District, Senator, August W. Berggren; Member of House, Hannibal P. Wood

Thirty-third General Assembly, 1882-1884— 22nd District, Senator, August W. Berggren; Members of House, A. S. Curtis, F. A. Willoughby.

Thirty-fourth General Assembly, 1884-1886— 22nd District, Senator, August W Berggren; Member of House, Orrin P. Cooley.

Thirty-fifth General Assembly, 1886-1888— 22nd District, Senator, August W. Berggren; Member of House, Orrin P. Cooley.

Thirty-sixth General Assembly, 1888-1890— 22nd District, Members of House, Orrin P. Cooley, George W. Prince, James W. Hunter.

Thirty-seventh General Assembly, 1890-1892 — 22nd District, Members of House, James W. Hunter, George W. Prince.

Thirty-eighth General Assembly, 1892-1894— 22nd District, Members of House, Jay L. Hastings, Frank Murdock.

Thirty-ninth General Assembly, 1894-1896— 35th District, Member of House,Frank Murdock.

Fortieth General Assembly, 1896-1898— 35th District, Member of House, Frank Murdock.

Forty-first General Assembly, 1898-1900— 35th District, Senator, Leon A. Townsend; Member of House, Charles C. Craig.

Forty-second General Assembly, 1900-1902— 35th District, Senator, Leon A. Townsend; Member of House, Charles C Craig.

Forty-third General Assembly, 1902-1904— 43rd District, Senator, Leon A. Townsend; Member of House, Wilfred Arnold.

Forty-fourth General Assembly, 1904-1906— 43rd District, Senator, Leon A. Townsend; Members of House, Wilfred Arnold, Michael J. Daugherty.

Forty-fifth General Assembly, 1906-1908— 43rd District, Senator, Charles F. Hurburgh; Members of House, Edward J. King, Michael J. Daugherty.

Forty-sixth General Assembly, 1908-1910— 43rd District Senator, Charles F. Hurburgh; Member of House, Edward J. King.

Forty-seventh General Assembly, 1910-1912 — 43rd District, Senator, Charles F. Hurburgh; Member of House, Edward J. King.

Forty-eighth General Assembly, 1912-1914 — 43rd District, Senator, Charles F. Hurburgh; Members of House, Edward J King, W. B. Elliott.

Forty-ninth General Assembly, 1914-1916 — 43rd District, Members of House, Owen B. West, James E. Davis.

Fiftieth General Assembly, 1916-1918— 43rd District, Members of House, Owen B. West, James E. Davis.

Fifty-first General Assembly, 1918-1920— 43rd District, Members of House, A. O. Lindstrum, O. B. West.
On State Commissions

The following are serving at the present time by appointment of Governor Lowden as members of State commissions:

On Tax Commission — Charles C- Craig.

On Industrial Commission — Omer N. Custer.

As Ambassador

Col. Clark E. Carr, deceased, served as ambassador to Denmark during the term of President Harrison.

On Supreme Bench

Knox county has given three judges to the Supreme Court of Illinois as follows:

Charles B. Lawrence, June, 1864 to June, 1873
Alfred M. Craig, June, 1873 to June, 1900.
Charles C. Craig, October, 1913 to June, 1918.

On Circuit Bench

The record in Circuit Court Judges follows, going back to 1873:

Eighth Circuit, Created in 1873 — Arthur A. Smith elected in 1873.

Tenth Circuit, Created in 1877 — Arthur A. Smith, reelected June 16, 1879; re-elected June 1, 1885; re-elected June 1, 1891; resigned Nov. 15, 1894.

Ninth Circuit, Created in 1897 — George W. Thompson, elected June 18, 1897; re-elected in 1903, 1909, 1915; still on bench.

Judge Thompson also served for years as a member of the Appellate benches of the Second and Third Districts.

Mention of Others

Among the early Lieutenant-Governors of Illinois wan William McMurtry, and he in this capacity served the Senate as its president during the Thirteenth and Fourteenth General Assemblies-

In addition to serving his district as State Senator, A. W. Berggren was for a number of years warden of the State penitentiary at Joliet.

Leon A. Townsend, for two terms State Senator, was appointed United States Marshal.

Moses O Williamson, now president of the Peoples' Trust and Savings Bank, Galesburg, was elected State Treasurer and served one term.

Many other Knox county men have served on various State boards.
Banking in Knox County

The first regular bank in Knox county was a private one founded by Cornelius Runkle in Knoxville, with himself as president and John Babbington as cashier. In 1863, the bank was nationalized. Since that day there has been a great development, until at the present time there are twenty-three banks in the county, including all three types. National, State and private, representing a capitalization of several millions and a large total of deposits. These institutions all appear to be substantial and well established. In addition there are in Galesburg four Homestead and Loan Associations, representing a large investment.
Agricultural Developments

The agricultural development of the county was accelerated by the inventive genius of its citizens. H. H. May turned out the first steel mould board plow, George W Brown invented the corn planter. The first threshing machine put in an appearance in 1842 and the first reaper in 1847. In close succession came other implements down to the present time that made production and farming on a large scale possible.
Farm Statistics

The following statistics relate to the farms of the county:

Number of farms in county in 1900 ~ 3,086
Number of farms in county in 1910 ~ 2,863
Farm area ~ 455,040 acres
Under cultivation ~ 424,381 acres
Land in farms in 1910 ~ 432,349 acres
Value in 1910 ~ $60,776,744
Value in 1900 ~ $31,164,616
Operated by owners in 1910 ~ 1,518
Operated by owners in 1900 ~ 1,756
Tenants, 1910 ~ 1,294
Tenants, 1900 ~ 1,223

Since 1910 the value of land in the county has materially increased. Agriculture is by all odds the largest single interest in Knox county.

During the last few years there has been a marked change in farm methods, equipment and facilities. The tractor is now finding its place among the implements. The telephone is found in most farm homes and in many there are now electric appliances. Modern treatment of soils to increase and preserve fertility is being employed. In years past, farmers had their granges and other organizations and their institutes. The most important agency for promoting crop increases and farm interests is the County Farm Bureau, having the support of the National and State governments as well as of the membership. The Knox County Farm Bureau, which was organized February 28, 1918, now has a membership of 1936, and is one of the strongest in the State. The fee of ten dollars a year for each member provides ample funds for a large work. A central office is maintained in Galesburg. The officers of this Bureau follow:
President — Henry C. Gehring, Altona
Vice President— W. B. Elliott, Williamsfield.
Secretary — Ray M. Arnold, Galesburg.
Treasurer — George A. Charles, Knoxville-

Advisory Council — Oliver Nelson, Altona; C. B. Griffith, Galesburg; Elias Hughs, Maquon; E. U. Shumacher, Hermon; Frank Gamel, Rio; M. F. Shea, Henderson; Geo. Bond, Abingdon; C. M. C Brown, Oneida; Winn Wilmot, Wataga; Marion Shives, Yates City; H. S. Breece, Knoxville; Ed. Moon, Williamsfield; Willim Beals, Altona; Ben Bjorling, Victoria; Ed Taylor, Rapatee; John Stevens, Gilson.

Executive Committee — H. C. Gehring, Altona; W B. Elliott, Williamfsield, Ray M. Arnold, Galesburg; Geo. A. Charles, Knoxville; C, E. Hartsook, Maquon; J. Harry Shumaker, Abingdon; Willard Miller, Rio; William Beals, Altona; Chas M. Hunter, Abingdon.

Farm Advisor — E. M. D. Bracker.
Associate Farm Adviser — Floyd R. Marchant.
Associate Farm Adviser — Ralph E Arnett.

This bureau is linked up with the State and National bureaus and is a thoroughly efficient organization, whose work through bulletins, community meetings and institutes, reaches every part of the county.
The County Officers

The list of county officers serving at present follows:

County Judge ~ Walter C. Frank ~ Dec. 1922
County Clerk ~ Frank L. Adams ~ Dec. 1922
Clerk of Circuit Court ~ Chas- H. Westerberg ~ Dec. 1920
State's Attorney ~ Addison J. Boutelle ~ Dec. 1920
Sheriff ~ James T. Wheeler ~ Dec. 1922
County Treasurer ~ Herbert N. Bloomquist ~ Dec. 1922
County Supt. of Schools ~ Walter F. Boyes ~ Aug 1923
Coroner ~ Geo. S. Bower ~ Dec. 1920
County Surveyor ~ Arthur L. Richey ~ Dec. 1920
County Supt. of Highways ~ Arthur L. Richey ~ Mar. 17, 1926

Since the foregoing was written, those whose terms expired in 1920, were re-elected for a four years term.
The Present Board

Of the present Board of Supervisors, 1920, C. H. Upp is chairman. The personnel follows:

Towns ~ Supervisors
Indian Point ~ Willard Tinkham
Cedar ~ A C. Harvey
Galesburg ~ Lew E. Wallace
Galesburg City ~ Fred T. DuVon
Galesburg City ~ Geo. H. Burgland
Galesburg City ~ J. G W. Dopp
Galesburg City ~ E. R. Everett
Galesburg City ~ A. V. Rowe
Galesburg City ~ N. L, Ewing
Galesburg City ~ C. E. Bowles
Galesburg City ~ Fred I. Taylor
Galesburg City ~ James Gaines
Henderson ~ Andrew Hawkinson
Rio ~ Milton Deatherage
Chestnut ~ E. U. Shumaker
Orange ~ O. L McElwain
Knox ~ Clarence R. Lacy
Knox ~ Arthur H. Pearson
Sparta ~ J. E WilHamson
Ontario ~ J. J. Clearwater
Maquon ~ H. L Epley
Haw Creek ~ C. H. Upp
Persifer ~ Arthur J. Berry
Copley ~ Robert Gibbs
Walnut Grove ~ John A. Johnson
Salem ~ W. E. West
Elba ~ O. W Farwell
Truro ~ Chester H. Pulver
Victoria ~ Frank Peterson
Lynn ~ A. L. Appeil
Township Officers

Following is a list of the present township officers, 1920, furnished by the county clerk:

Elected April 6th, 1920. Term Expires April, 1922

Town ~ Name
Indian Point ~ W. H. Clark
Cedar ~ R. Y. Campbell
Galesburg ~ John Vedell
Henderson ~ Reuben R. Fields
Rio ~ W. A. Brown
Chestnut ~ Seaton Moon
Orange ~ Earl Bowman
Knox ~ Harry Woolsey
Sparta ~ O. L. Erickson
Ontario ~ C. V. Conyers
Maquon ~ P C. Lafferty
Haw Creek ~ Earl Snell
Persifer ~ Dan McQueen
Copley ~ R. W. Brown
Walnut Grove ~ S. Harry Johnson
Salem ~ Edson Bowman
Elba ~ R. O. Baird
Truro ~ Frank E. Welsh
Victoria ~ W H. Ray
Lynn ~ Leslie Haxton
City of Galesburg ~ W. L. Boutelle
Elected April 6, 1920, for Term Jan. 1, 1921 to Dec. 31, 1922

Town ~ Assessor
Indian Point ~ G. L. Hagan
Cedar ~ W. H. Robinson
Galesburg ~ J. H. Marsden
City of Galesburg ~ Sander Anderson
Henderson ~ C. J. Shepard
Rio ~ M A. Almgreen
Chestnut ~ Frank Sampson
Orange ~ Robert Sumner
Knox ~ W. H. Cronoble
Sparta ~ William Masters
Ontario ~ C. A. Peterson
Maquon ~ Frank Booth
Haw Creek ~ C. L. Dossett
Persifer ~ E W. Farquer
Copley ~ Thomas Hobbs
Walnut Grove ~ N. H. Nelson
Salem ~ B. B. Lawrence
Elba ~ B. L. Baird
Truro ~ S. M. Parker
Victoria ~ W. S. Moak
Lynn ~ Steve Milliken

Elected April 6, 1920— Terms Expire April, 1922

Town ~ Commissioners
Indian Point ~ Isaac T. Perry
Cedar ~ Jno. McCracken
Galesburg ~ George Swedlund
Henderson ~ A E. Walters
Rio ~ Arthur Robertson
Chestnut ~ Mason Headley
Orange ~ Earnest Thurman
Knox ~ W. H. Steck
Sparta ~ O. S. Olson
Ontario ~ Gust Peterson
Maquon ~ N. H. McGirr
Haw Creek ~ W J. Kinser
Persifer ~ R. C. Folger
Copley ~ F. E. Johnson
Walnut Grove ~ Gust Bjorling
Salem ~ R. C. Jones
Elba ~ T. E. Straub
Truro ~ W. H. Machin
Victoria ~ J. A. Sandquist
Lynn ~ George Jones

Term Expires First Monday in May, 1921

Town ~ Name
Indian Point ~ W H. Clark, S. Gray
Cedar ~ G. A. Hickman, B. 0. Baird
Galesburg, City of Galesburg ~ Robert J. Walberg, S. M Meadows, A. B. Pierson, John C. Kost
Henderson ~ W. B. Nelson
Rio ~ B. E. Frankenburger, F. M. Epperson
Chestnut ~ A. F. Bjorklund
Orange ~ W. H. Wiley, H. H Holsinger
Knox ~ A. E. Lucas, William Norris
Sparta ~ S. R. Parkinson
Ontario ~ E. C. Hannam
Maquon ~ J. H Farquer, M. H. Taylor
Haw Creek ~ H. E. Snell, John Housh
Persifer ~ E. J. Steffen, W. H. Montgomery
Copley ~ P. A McDowell
Walnut Grove ~ Oscar McGrew
Salem ~ W. H. Nash
Truro ~ John Mackie, H. R. Kinson
Victoria ~ George W. Coleman
Lynn ~ L. E. Gibbs, A. L. Appell
Terms Expire First Monday in May, 1921

Town ~ Name
Indian Point ~ S. D. Lomax
Cedar ~ C. M. Hughbanks, A. W. Bolon
Galesburg ~ E. A. Woods
City of Galesburg ~ W. G. Kinney, George Rodecker, Joshua Davis, John W- Starnes
Henderson ~ Victor Peterson, Wm. Erickson
Rio ~ Claus Malmberg, Robert Willett
Orange ~ W. H. Woolsey
Knox ~ Geo. W. Witherell, Andrew Spencer
Sparta ~ Wm. Sandeen, G. L. Newberg
Village of Wataga ~ C G. Bangston
Ontario ~ Mack Foster, S. J. Cox
Maquon ~ T. U. Walters, L. B Hughbanks
Haw Creek ~ John Housh
Persifer ~ Edward Smith
Copley ~ John Harpman
Walnut Grove ~ O. W. Peterson
Salem ~ P A. Taylor, Elmer Corbet
Truro ~ B. F. Speer, E. J. Gray
Victoria ~ D. W. Suydam
Lynn ~ F. W. Quick, Steve Milliken

City or Village ~ Name
Abingdon ~ F. W. McClure
City of Galesburg ~
Henderson ~ H. C. Davison
East Galesburg ~
Oneida ~ Martin Gehring
Maquon ~ Adam Kinser
Knoxville ~ Wm. H Dredge
Williamsfield ~ J. M. Griffin
Yates City ~ T. J. Kightlinger

Extracted 14 Dec 2017 by Norma Hass from Annals of Knox County: Commemorating Centennial of Admission of Illinois as a State of the Union in 1818, published in 1921 by the Centennial Historical Association, Knox County, Illinois, The Board of Supervisors, pages 5-27.

Templates in Time