When but ten years or age, he lost his mother, and when fourteen, his father died also. After this the boy was thrown out on the world to struggle for himself. At this tender age he of necessity encountered many difficulties and endured much adversity, but triumphed over all. At the age of seventeen, he went to Thornton, Illinois. Being an industrious young man he readily found employment on a farm. Here he remained until the age of twenty-four, when he enlisted in the army. He belonged to Company F. Fifty Second Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He enlisted in 1861.
As a soldier he made a noble record and was engaged in the battle of Vicksburg, Shilo, Ft. Donelson, Siege of Corinth, Bay's Ferry, Resaca, Iuka, Snake Creek Gap, Altoona, and Atlanta, beside being with Sherman on his famous march to the sea.
He endured many hardships incident to military life and was honorable discharged, November 18, 1864. Upon his return from the army, he again settled at Thornton, where he engaged in business for himself. On August 16, 1868, he was married to Miss Emeline Williams of that city.
To this union were born five children, three daughters and two sons. One son died at the age of four and a half years, and the other in infancy.
In the year 1875, the deceased moved his family to Shelby County, Iowa, settling near Irwin. Here they lived some fifteen years, enduring the privation and hardships incident to pioneer days. By means of thrift and good management he struggled to a good degree of affluence. He was a man who was always in the forefront of every noble project for the uplift of the community whether material, educational or religious.
But he had given his best strength to the flag of his country, and was handicapped by ailments contracted in army service. It was therefore necessary for him to abandon farming at a comparatively early age. He came to Manning in 1890 where he spent the rest of his days. He was a man whose life was above reproach, and whoever sought the best, things for his family in the way of education, and comfort. He was a model husband, father and citizen, and universally esteemed by all who knew him. Long since he took the Bible as the rule and guide of his faith and practice, and throughout his soldier career, always pillowed his head by night upon a copy of the Scripture which he carried.
For three years his health was on a rapid decline. At the end drew near he became eager for the summons of the death angel to usher him to his final rest. He appeared fully ready for the end. He died May 31, 1918, aged 80 years, 10 months and 5 days. A wife and three daughters remain to mourn his demise, all of whom were present in his last hours and weeks lending, their kindly ministrations to make their loved one comfortable. The daughters are Mrs. Harriet Martin, Billings, Montana; Mrs. Azubah Pollock, Omaha, Nebraska; and Mrs. Ida Kemp, Sioux City, Iowa.
It is fitting that mention be made of the long and happy marriage of this aged couple. Had the husband lived a couple of months longer, they might have celebrated their golden wedding. It would be hard to find a richer affection and greater devotion than that which was exhibited by this aged pair.
The funeral services were conducted from the home Sunday afternoon. Rev, Aller, pastor of the Presbyterian Church, conducted the services. There was a very large attendance of friends and neighbors.
At the grave the services were under the charge of the local Masonic Lodge, the deceased being a faithful member and worker of that organization. Over a hundred of the members of the lodge were present and the work of the lodge was very impressive.
Thus another of our valiant soldier boys has departed from this earth. His life work is ended, but his memory will always he cherished for the noble work he performed. He has well earned a place among men, and future ages shall pay him honor.