Biography - Thomas Coultas

Rev. Thomas I. COULTAS, pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church, Hillsboro, is a son of George and Eliza (WILSON) COULTAS, natives of Yorkshire, England. George, with three of his brothers, sailed for America and landed at New York April 14, 1830. They went from there to Rochester, N. Y. where they remained for a few months. From there they went by boat to Cleveland, Ohio, and from there to Jacksonville, Ill., by the way of Cincinnati, Ohio, Louisville, Ky., and St. Louis, Mo., living for a brief time in each of these places. Near Jacksonville, Ill., he formed the acquaintance of Eliza WILSON, also a native of Yorkshire, England, and who preceded him a few years to his country. Theiracquaintance ripened into a greater intimacy, and on July 8, 1835, they were married. Shortly after this, Mr. COULTAS purchased from the Government a tract of land near Winchester, then in Morgan, now the county seat of Scott County, Ill. Here he lived, following agricultural pursuits to the time of his death, June 10, 1859. Mrs. COULTAS, Sr., died October 26, 1875. Thomas I. is the youngest of a family of five sons and two daughters, and was born May 5, 1853. He lived on the farm until he was sixteen years of age, spending most of the time in school, first in the country schoolhouse, afterward in the high school in Winchester. In September, 1869, when he was but a few months past sixteen years of age, he was regularly licensed as a minister, and received into the travelingconnection in the Illinois Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, perhaps the youngest man ever this received and put into the regular work. After serving churches in Sangamon and Champaign Counties respectively for two years, he left the regular pastorate to further prosecute his studies. In September, 1871, he entered the Illinois Wesleyan University, of Bloomington., Ill., and was graduated from that institution in June, 1875. While a student, Mr. COULTAS distinguished himself and brought honor to his alma mater by representing this institution in an inter-college contest in oratory, where eight of the leading colleges of the State contested in original oration, the judges declaring him to be the champion. By virtue of his success, he represented the State of Illinois in an inter-State contest in oratory, held at Indianapolis, In., in May 1875, where the champions of six States, which had held similar contests, met, and here also Mr. COULTAS won the gold medal over all his competitors.After his graduation, he entered immediately upon the work of the ministry. After serving the church at Barry, Pike County, for four months as a supply, he was re-admitted into the Conference, and returned to his church for two years in succession. After this pastorate, he very acceptably served the church in Pittsfield, the county seat of Pike County. From this church he was sent by his Conference to the Trinity Church, Quincy, Ill. Here he was largelyinstrumental in removing from this church a heavy debt, which for years hung as a shadow over it. The church in other respects greatly prospered under his pastorate. In September, 1881, he was made pastor of the church in Hillsboro, and, although he has been here but a short time, he is held in high esteem by his congregation and the community. Mr. COULTAS was married, November 23, 1875, to Miss Angie MORRISON, the daughter of Henry B. and Caroline (SEARS) MORRISON, then of Bloomington, now of Monticello, Ill., and the niece of Washington SEARS, of Scott County, and Rev. Hiram SEARS, of East St. Louis, one prominent as a legislator, and the other as a minister and educator. Mrs. COULTAS was also educated at the Illinois Wesleyan University. There have been born unto them Aldo Bliss COULTAS, March 10, 1877, and Eda Bernice COULTAS, March 16, 1879. Mr. COULTAS is a Republican in politics. He belongs to the I. O. O. F., and is also a member of Union Chapter, No. 10, A., F. & A. M.

Extracted 19 Nov 2016 by Norma Hass from 1882 History of Bond and Montgomery Counties, Illinois, Part 2 Biographical Department, pages 100-101.

Templates in Time