Biography - John Young

JOHN P. YOUNG, the present Assessor of Harvel Township, is widely known and highly respected for his excellent business ability and integrity of character. His parents were natives of Germany and in early life made themselves a home in Baden. In this beautiful city of the Fatherland, John P. was born May 19, 1839, and, being a dutiful son, he remained with his parents until nearly nineteen years of age. The lessons of frugality and patient training in habits of industry acquired in his childhood home gave him confidence in himself, and as he neared manhood, his ambition was aroused by the reported success of others who had gone to the New World. He now determined to emigrate to America, the Eldorado of countless millions.
Mr. Young's journey to the New World was not made in a fast-sailing steamship. He embarked on a sailing-vessel which left Havre November 24, 1858, and arrived at her destination, New Orleans, February 20, 1859. The three-month voyage gave the young German many hours for leisure thought and planning for the unknown future, and it is probable that much of his later success was due to this fact. The Sunny South did not keep the young emigrant long in its territory, as he soon turned his face northward, and in Jersey County, Ill., received his first employment in this country. Beginning as a farm hand, John, as he was familiarly called, worked steadily two years, receiving, even in the busy season, only the modest sum of $15 per month. But the sturdy young man's wants were few, and having now become a true American, he was content to wait his time. His next step upward was achieved in Montgomery County, where he farmed on shares three years in Pitman Township. At the end of this time, he accepted employment which promised better returns at Decatur.
Mr. Young, however, preferred his late place of residence, and being convinced that Montgomery County was his best field for work, returned there after a brief time, and again became a tiller of the soil in Pitman Township, and subsequently proprietor of eighty acres of well-improved land. In the meantime, about eight years after his arrival in America, the young farmer selected a life partner, and upon August 9, 1867, married Miss Fannie Fehr. Already a land-owner, blessed with health, prosperity, home and wife, the future outlook was even at that early day very bright. Seven children have blessed Mr. Young's union with Miss Fehr, and six of these children Frank, Mary, Katie, Minnie, Sophie and John are now living, the death of a son George being the only affliction this happy household has known. Politically, the subject of this sketch is a Democrat, defending his views with intelligent ability, and his heart is with the masses, one of his chief aims in life being to educate and elevate the multitude.
Mr. Young is an ardent advocate of the public school system of his adopted country, and for several years has untiringly and conscientiously performed the duties of School Director. Many readily accept such office, neglecting the work which attaches to it, but the fidelity of John P. Young has accomplished much for the youth of his immediate neighborhood, and the good he has done will be shown in the lives of many coming men and women.
Besides the position of School Director, which brought him into frequent contact with the children both great and small, Mr. Young's appointment as Collector of Pitman Township gave him a wide-spread acquaintance. For nine consecutive years he acceptably discharged his duties as Township Collector, and for the past two years has been Assessor.
Mr. Young is a consistent attendant and member of the Roman Catholic Church. As a citizen, he enjoys the full confidence of his associates and neighbors, and pleasant indeed must be the retrospect of the past. Alone in a new country, relying solely on his own energy, he has made for himself a record to be envied, and has won a happy home and wide-spread influence, whose value cannot be overestimated.

Extracted 04 Dec 2016 by Norma Hass from 1892 Portrait and Biographical Record of Montgomery and Bond Counties, Illinois, pages 195-196.

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