Biography - Robert Williamson

Robert A. WILLIAMSON, farmer, P. O. Hillsboro, was born in Montgomery County, Ill., March 12, 1837. This family are of Irish descent, and emigrated to America at a very early day in this country's history. The paternal grandfather of our subject was born in Virginia, where he carried on farming, and raised a family of nine children, with whom he removed to Montgomery County, Ill., in the year 1835, where he died September 20, 1861, aged about seventy years. His wife, Jane DAVIDSON, is of Welsh descent, and was born March 15, 1797, and is still living, enjoying as good, if not better, health, than persons usually do who have attained her age. Of her once large family six are still living, and of whom John, the father of our subject, was the oldest child, and was born December 15, 1814, and since he came to Montgomery County with his parents has continued in the county, engaged more or less extensively in farming, and was at one time considered one of the leading men of the county, but has, to a certain extent, retired from active labor and given way to younger men, who may never be able to display more energy, enterprise and general activity than has Mr. WILLIAMSON, who, at the present time, is enjoying good health, and bids fair to live still many years, surrounded by his children, and enjoying the fruits of a well-spent life and successful career. His wife, Nancy G. CARD, was born in Kentucky February 14, 1819, is still living, and is also hale and hearty. She is the mother of eleven children, of whom five are still living, viz., Robert A., our subject; Otis M. (see history); Cynthia J., wife of H. M. LUDEWICK; William C., a farmer living in Butler Township; Arra E., wife of W. C. WOODWARD, living on the homestead. Robert A., the oldest child and subject of this sketch, remained upon the homestead farm until he reached the age of twenty years, assisting his father in his agricultural pursuits, and in attending school in the neighboring log schoolhouse, to which his educational privileges were limited. He has, however, by contact with the world, close observation and reading, succeeded in obtaining more than an ordinary practical education. He entered upon his career in life as a house builder, comparatively a poor man; but, having a stout heart and an energetic spirit, he determined to make his own way in the world. He remained engaged in house building in different localities for about twelve years, and then went to Colorado, where he remained two years engaged in mining. He then entered the service during the rebellion in Company H, One Hundred and Forty-third Illinois Volunteer Infantry, with Capt. James G. SEWARD; regiment commanded by Col. D. C. SMITH. He remained in the service until the close of the war, when he returned home, and took upon himself the duties of a farm life, at which he has since remained engaged. He has sixty-nine acres of choice farm and timber land under a high state of cultivation, which shows Mr. WILLIAMSON to be a practical farmer. Although he grows all the usual farm crops, he makes a specialty of grain, and raising stock in a small way. He was married in Montgomery County, September 20, 1866, to Mary E. (CROSS) LUDEWICK, who was born August 18, 1838. She is the mother of two living children, viz., Della HEED and Katy HAYS; four children died in infancy. Mrs. Williamson is a daughter of Absalom C. and Katy (FOGLEMAN) CRESS, natives of North Carolina, deceased. Religiously, Mr. and Mrs. WILLIAMSON are connected with the Lutheran Church. He is also a member of the A., F. & A. M. at Irving. Politically, he is identified with the Republican part. He is an energetic and enterprising man, and socially enjoys the highest esteem of the entire community. He is a public-spirited man, always interested in any county or public enterprise, and for the advancement of religious and educational privileges.

Extracted 22 Nov 2016 by Norma Hass from 1882 History of Bond and Montgomery Counties, Illinois, Part 2 Biographical Department, pages 298-299.

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