Biography - Charles Seymour

CHARLES W. SEYMOUR was born upon section 14, Hillsboro Township, Montgomery County, Ill., July 28. 1829. He now resides one mile west of the town of Hillsboro on section 11, where he owns seven hundred and forty acres of land and employs about eighteen men making brick.
The father of our subject, Wesley Seymour, may be truthfully numbered among the very early pioneers of Illinois. He was born in South Carolina, in 1799. His father, William Seymour, paternal grandfather of Charles W., was a native of the Emerald Isle, and was born about forty miles from the sea. He was married to Miss Dixon, also of Ireland. The twain, leaving home and friends behind them, crossed the ocean and settled in South Carolina. Their first home in this country was in Laurens C. H., S. C., but taking counsel together they set out for the Northwest. Journeying slowly with teams, they crossed a long stretch of country, coming at last to the broad and almost unbroken prairie of Illinois. No canals or easy mode of travel greeted their eyes. Here and there they met creaking wagons toiling painfully on their lonely way. Miles apart they saw the cabins of the energetic hardy pioneers, who gave them cordial greeting. At last the weary emigrants reached Montgomery County. Ill., but they only remained there a short time, and then turned their faces toward Mississippi, in which State they passed the rest of their days.
Charles Seymour's mother, Frances Vaughn, it is supposed, was born in South Carolina in 1799. In that State she met and was married to Wesley Seymour. In 1825, the young couple, full of life and strength and energy, started on a long pilgrimage to Illinois, following almost the identical route William Seymour and his wife had traveled so long before. There were some changes, hut as yet no railroads, and the unbroken prairie stretched itself before them for miles and miles. It is nearly sixty-five years since the father of our subject took up a Government claim and built a little log cabin on section 14, in which humble home his children were born and reared. The sons of this household were nine in number. There were no daughters. One child died in infancy, the others grew to man's estate, and live of the nine still survive. The mother of this family died in 1854, but her husband long outlived her. He remained in Montgomery County until 1877, and then, having long since passed three-score years and ten, went to Columbus, Kan., where he died at the advanced age of ninety-one years.
Charles Seymour received his entire schooling in his native place. His first employment was at wagon-making and manufacturing brick. In 1854, our subject, in common with thousands of other seekers after gold, took the overland journey to California, the golden Eldorado of the West. He took the trail by the North Platte, and though his team of oxen were strong and hardy cattle, their progress across the desert was so slow, that he was from March 27 to August 10 getting to the American Valley Mine of California. Mr. Seymour remained in the Golden State, mining and carpentering alternately, until November 21, 1859, when he embarked for home, returning by water via Panama to New York and thence to Hillsboro. In 1861, he bought ten acres of land where he now resides, and opened the brick-yard which he has run so profitably ever since. The ten acres have been increased to seven hundred and forty acres, all in Hillsboro Township.
About two years after his return, Mr. Seymour married Miss Sarah J. Killpatrick, daughter of James and Helen Killpatrick. Mrs. Seymour, like her husband, is a native of the town and was born February 16, 1840. Mr. and Mrs. Seymour have had six children: Mary E., wife of J. W. Hook; Charles F. and Frederick H., deceased; George S., of Hillsboro Township; Camilla J. and Ethel are yet with their parents.
Aside from his brick business, Mr. Seymour is a most successful farmer and stock-raiser. Occupied as he has been for so many years with his own private business, our subject has yet found time to devote to public affairs local and national. He served faithfully six years as School Trustee, and it is- to the conscientious efforts of such men as Mr. Seymour the steady improvement in our public school system is due. Our subject affiliates with the Republican party, but in local elections he votes for the best man. He is well known as, a public-spirited citizen and is a Mason, a member of Mt. Moriah Lodge No. 51, Hillsboro Township.

Extracted 10 Jan 2017 by Norma Hass from 1892 Portrait and Biographical Record of Montgomery and Bond Counties, Illinois, pages 418-419.

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