Biography - William Elliott

William T. ELLIOTT, deceased, a native of Franklin County, Ky., was left an orphan at an early age. In his twelfth year, becoming justly dissatisfied with his treatment and condition in his uncle's household, he, in 1838, was informally adopted by R. W.O'BANNON; for thirteen years he was a member of his estimable family; with no ties of blood to bind the lad to his foster parent, they were, in esteem and affection, as father and son; he shared Mr. O'BANNON's fortunes, removing successively to Missouri and Madison County in this State. In 1849, he married Miss Adeline SWETT, of that county, and, forming a brief partnership with a blacksmith at Ridgely, he wrought for several months at wagon-making. Turning from this, he began mercantile life with his foster parent; successful in this line, he, in May, 1854, removed his family to Litchfield, which then consisted of his store and dwelling, and one other dwelling, not occupied. He was by three days the pioneer settler, James W. JEFFERIS being the second householder. With Mr. O'BANNON as a partner, he opened the store of W. T. ELLIOTT on the corner now covered by the banking house of BEACH, DAVIS & Co., April 24, 1854; the name of the firm was twice changed in the ensuing twelve years, and fortune smiled on his venture. In 1866, he retired from commercial life, and, in connection with P. B. UPDIKE, engaged in the sale of agricultural implements. He took the tide at its flood, and it bore him to wealth. The little house on "cheap corner" was exchanged for a commodious home a quarter of a mile north, on State street. No reverse swept across his path. His eye was not yet dim, nor his natural force abated. But pulmonary disease appeared, and, after a few months of hoping against hope, and dissolving his partnership with Mr. UPDIKE, he died, March 24, 1868, to the profound regret and grief of the city. Mr. ELLIOTT was a charter member of the Charter Oak Lodge of Masons, and an Odd Fellow; for several terms he presided over the lodges of both fraternities; in graceful recognition of his zeal and efficiency in works meet for a true and accomplished brother of the mystic tie, the chapter bears his name. He greatly aided in the erection of a new church for the Christian society. He was equally estimable in what he did and for what he was. He was of medium stature, spare, but sinewy; he was of courteous bearing, diligent in business, upright in his dealings, discreet in speech, without concealments or the need of them, and true to his party, which was a bar to no personal friendships, and never limited his readiness to assist others. Leading a spotless life, losing no friend and making no enemy in the dolorous ears when a difference of opinion meant hatred and all uncharitableness, he blushed only at his own praises. Three of his six children still survive. William Lewis, his eldest son, at twenty-two a Knight Templar, and the youngest one in this section, died in 1876, in his twenty-sixth year; his second daughter, Lillie, "went home" the following year; one died in infancy Minnie.

Extracted 19 Nov 2016 by Norma Hass from 1882 History of Bond and Montgomery Counties, Illinois, Part 2 Biographical Department, page 140.

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