Ford County, IL
THOMAS W. CAIN, a well-known livery man, is one of the prominent citizens of Gibson City. He claims Ohio
as the State of his nativity, having been born in Fairfield County, November 5, 1842, unto Nehemiah C. and Rachel
R. (Herron) Cain. His father, who was born in New York, is of Irish descent and in early life emigrated with his
parents to Ohio, where he was afterward married. His wife, who was also descended from Irish ancestry, was born
in the Buckeye State. In 1843, they came to DeWitt County, Ill., settling on an unimproved farm, but Mr. Cain soon
began clearing and cultivating the land and became one of the prosperous farmers of the community. Both he and
his wife were Methodists in religious sentiment, and he was a stalwart supporter of the Republican party. He died
at the age of fifty-four years in De Witt County in 1863, and she also passed away in the same county at about
the same age, in 1866. Their union was blessed by the birth of seven children, five of whom still survive.
Thomas W. Cain was the third child in order of birth in the family and received his education at the old-time district school. He was reared under the parental roof and, like a dutiful son, cared for his mother as long as she lived and after her death still had charge of the home place, assisting the younger members of the family until they were able to care for themselves.
A marriage ceremony performed on the 21st of September, 1876, united the destinies of Mr. Cain and Miss Palmyra M. Newman. The lady is a native of Knox County, Ohio, and a daughter of George Newman, who emigrated from Ohio to this State in an early day, settling in Knox County. Five children grace the union of our subject and his estimable wife, namely: Hattie, George I., Elva, Clinton and Myra, all of whom are still with their parents.
Religiously, Mr. Cain is a member of the Presbyterian Church, to which his wife belongs. He has held several public offices of trust, including those of Supervisor, Tax Collector, School Director and Road Commissioner of his township. He is a Republican in politics and takes an active interest in the success of that party. From 1869 until 1875, Mr. Cain bought and shipped stock quite extensively, three years of the time being engaged in that business in Kansas. He purchased one hundred and sixty-six acres of land in Rutledge Township, DeWitt County, Ill., in 1883, on which he resided until coming to Gibson City four years later. He here purchased the livery stable before alluded to, which he has carried on continuously since. He is a valued citizen and one of the successful business men of the community, where he is held in the highest esteem. (Contributed by Brenda Boyer)
|John H. Leonard, who for eighteen years has resided upon his present farm on section 27, Dix Twp, was born in Roanoke Co., VA on the 30th of May 1842, and is one of seven children, whose parents were Jacob and Elizabeth Beazel Leonard. Both parents are now deceased. The mother died in 1867, and the father departed this life in 1882. Of the family, Eliza is now the wife of John Humphries; David died in 1887; Daniel died in 1856; Jacob is a resident farmer of Montgomery Co., MO.; Samuel, who enlisted in his country's service, was killed during the war in 1863; John H. is the next younger, and completes the family. Mr. Leonard of this sketch acquired his education in the common schools of the neighborhood, which he attended through the winter season, while in the summer months he aided in the labors of the home farm. He was still under the parental roof at the time of the braking out of the late war. At the age of twenty, he responded to the country's call for troops, enlisting in March, 1862, as a member of the Salem LightArtillery, of Virginia. The first engagement in which he participated was Crany Island. He afterwards fought in the battles of Richmond, Seven Pines, and in all the other engagements in which his regiment participated. On the close of the war he was honorably discharged and returned to his old home in Virginia, where he spent a short time.|
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