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ROWE, Sampson T.

Sampson T. ROWE, a leading farmer of Marshall county, resides on section 23, Whitefield township, having in his home farm six hundred and sixty-three acres. In addition, he owns two hundred and forty acres on section 16, and sixty acres one mile southwest of his home. A native of the county, he was born on the tract where he now lives, April 13, 1837. His parents, William and Harriet (PETERS) ROWE, natives of county Cornwall, England, emigrated to this country in 1834.

On arriving at New York William ROWE, with his family, proceeded directly to Cincinnati, Ohio. A younger brother of his had some time previously emigrated to America, and visiting Illinois with the view of locating, was well pleased with the country, and therefore advised William not to stop in Ohio but proceed directly to the Prairie State. Procuring teams at Cincinnati, the brothers started for Illinois. En route they met Charles KNOCK, who was also on the way to Marshall county, and in company they finished their journey.

Arriving here, William ROWE first selected government land on section 13, Whitefield township, but not being accessible to market, he squatted on a claim near the present village of Henry. Mr. KNOCK settled two miles below Henry, on the present line of the railroad, and lived and died there, but leaving no family. The brother of Mr. ROWE first located where the village of Henry is now situated, but subsequently removed to Sugar Grove, in Whitefield township. After a residence there of about twenty years, he sold out and removed to Missouri, where he remained until after the war, when he again returned to Marshall county, and here died some years ago.

On coming to this county William ROWE was in very moderate circumstances, but he came to this free land that he might better his condition in life, and the better provide for those dependent upon him. He was a hard working and industrious man, economical in his habits, and with a steadfast determination to succeed. Success did crown his efforts, and year after year he continued to add to his landed interests until he owned one thousand and forty-five acres at the time of his death. His land was mostly timber land, which in the early day was thought more valuable than that of the prairie, but this fact was disproved in later years.

The first house in which Mr. ROWE lived was a log structure of the regulation pattern. There most of the children were born, and in front of the log fire many an air castle was built ��as the days were going by.” Some years later he erected the brick house which still stands on the place, and where his latter days were spent. This house was built in the latter part of the 40’s and is now about fifty years old, but in a good state of preservation. Major THOMPSON, well known to all pioneers, made the brick required in its construction.

To William and Harriet ROWE were born ten children – Carolina, wife of William PAYNE, of Lucas county, Iowa; Sampson T., our subject; Mary A., wife of William MANCHESTER, of Clinton county, Iowa; Roger T., residing on a part of the old homestead; William A., of Henry, Illinois; Emma Harriet, who married George HARRIS, and died in Henry, leaving five children; Ellen Maria, wife of Robert WARD, of Lamar, Buchanan county, Iowa; John P., a farmer of southeastern Kansas; Elizabeth Rebecca, who married Jacob MANCHESTER, and moved to Clinton county, Iowa, where she died, leaving two children; and Joseph Henry, who died at the age of nine years.

From the organization of the party until his death, William ROWE was an advocate of republican principles and voted the party ticket. As a citizen he was always up with the times, and served his townsmen in various local official positions. He at all times had the confidence and respect of those with whom he was associated, and his death was a sad loss to the community in which he lived. He died in August, 1863, when but fifty-four years of age. His good wife survived him over twenty years, dying in 1885 at the home of one of her daughters in Iowa, where she had resided for several years.

Sampson T. ROWE, our subject, has spent his entire life in Marshall county, and was educated in the public schools. Under the instruction of his father he learned every detail of farm work, and determined to make that calling his life work. He remained at home, assisting in the cultivation of the farm until the death of his father, when he took entire charge, and for ten years operated it. The heirs then being of age, it was divided, and Sampson moved to his present residence, the farm comprising three hundred and ninety acres, which included the portion of a younger brother, from whom he purchased it. Other tracts were subsequently added, making the home farm, as stated in the beginning of this sketch. For some years he gave much attention to feeding cattle, but at the present time the raising of hogs is his specialty, though not confined to that branch. He carries on general farming, devoting about one hundred acres to corn, which he uses principally in feeding his own stock. The sheep industry has been in times past fairly profitable, and he now has about four hundred head.

On the 20th of March, 1872, Mr. ROWE was united in marriage with Miss Ellen S. TIDMARSH, a native of Wilkeshire, England, who came to this country when but six years of age, with her parents, Abel and Elizabeth (WILTS) TIDMARSH. Her family located in the neighborhood of ROWEs, but later moved to what they considered a better location near Varna, in Roberts township, where her father yet resides. They were there residing when the marriage occurred. By this union seven children were born – William A., who married Bertha Leona GREEN, and now resides in Whitefield township; and Edward Marshall, Ann Elizabeth, Henry Sampson, Charles Garfield, Francis Taylor and Eugene Lloyd, all of whom yet remain at home.

Mr. ROWE is a thorough and practical farmer and gives personal attention to every detail of the work in carrying on his splendid farm. His two oldest sons are also practical farmers, and are operating the two hundred and forty acre farm two miles from the old homestead. Politically Mr. ROWE is a republican, and is thoroughly grounded in the principles of the party. He cares nothing for political honors or official position. Mrs. ROWE is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church at Henry. The family are all highly honored citizens of the county and respected by all who know them.

Extracted April 2011 by Norma Hass from The Biographical Record of Bureau, Marshall and Putnam Counties, Illinois, 1896.

One of the most prominent representatives of the agricultural interests of Marshall county is Sampson T. ROWE, whose landholdings are very extensive, embracing about one thousand acres. He has displayed in an active business life excellent executive force and unfaltering enterprise, together with keen discernment and a ready recognition of opportunities, and thus he has made rapid and substantial advancement in his business career, which will bear close investigation and scrutiny, for his interests have been conducted along most honorable lines.

He is one of the county's native sons, having been born in Whitefield township on the 15th of April, 1837. His father, William ROWE, was a native of Cornwall, England, and in that country was reared and educated. He was also married there to Miss Harriet PETERS, likewise a native of that country, and in the year 1834 they crossed the Atlantic to the new world. On arriving at New York William ROWE with his family proceeded directly to Cincinnati, Ohio. A younger brother of his had some time previously emigrated to America and, visiting Illinois with a view of locating, was well pleased with the country and therefore advised William ROWE not to tarry in Ohio but to proceed directly to the Prairie state. Therefore, procuring teams at Cincinnati, the brothers at once started for Illinois and while en route they met Charles KNOCK, who was also on his way to Marshall county and in company they completed the journey. Only two years before had the Black Hawk war been fought and some Indians still lingered in the neighborhood, while many evidences of pioneer life were to be seen in the wild unbroken prairies and the uncut timber. Only here and there had a settler built his cabin and begun the work of developing a farm. Following his arrival William ROWE made selection of a tract of government land on section 13, Whitefield township, but not being accessible to market he "squatted" on a claim near the present village of Henry. Mr. KNOCK settled two miles below Henry on the present line of the railroad, while the brother, Sampson ROWE, first located where the village of Henry is now situated, but subsequently removed to Sugar Grove in Whitefield township. For twenty years he lived on that farm and then, selling his property, removed to Missouri, where he remained until after the war, when he again returned to Marshall county, where he died some years ago.

When William Rowe reached Illinois his financial possessions were quite limited, but he made the journey with the hope that he might better his condition in a free land where opportunities were greater and results were more quickly attained. He lived a life of industry, diligence and frugality, was economical in his habits and possessed a steadfast determination to succeed. The years came and went and he prospered, adding to his landed possessions as his financial resources increased until he was the owner of one thousand and forty-five acres at the time of his death. In early days timber land was thought to be more valuable than the open prairie and he accordingly invested in such. His first home in Illinois was a little log cabin such as was typical of the pioneer period and in that frontier home most of his children were born. Later this place gave way to a brick residence which still stands upon the farm and in which William Rowe spent his last days. The house was built in the latter part of the '40s but is still in a good state of preservation. Mr. ROWE not only assisted in the material upbuilding and improvement of the county through the development of his agricultural interests but was also well known as a leader in local political circles and was a stanch champion of the republican party from the time of its organization. He served in various local offices, the duties of which were discharged with promptness and fidelity. In all life's relations he commanded the confidence and respect of those with whom he came in contact and the community deeply mourned his loss when in August, 1863, he passed away at the comparatively early age of fifty-four years. His wife survived him for more than twenty years, and passed away in 1885 at the home of one of her daughters in Iowa, with whom she had lived for several years.

In the family of William and Harriet ROWE were ten children, of whom six are yet living: Sampson T., of this review; Mary Ann, the wife of William MANCHESTER, of Clinton county, Iowa; Ella Maria, the wife of Robert WARD, of Lamar, Buchanan county, Iowa; John P., who follows farming in Kansas; William A., who is living in Henry; and Roger T., also a resident of Henry. Those who have passed away are: Carolina, the deceased wife of William PAYNE, of Lucas county, Iowa ; Emma Harriet, who married George HARRIS and died in Henry; Elizabeth Rebecca, who married Jacob MANCHSTER and removed to Clinton county, Iowa, where she passed away; and Joseph Henry, who died at the age of nine years.

Sampson T. ROWE has spent his entire life in Marshall county. He was reared amid pioneer scenes and environments and shared with the family in the hardships and privations of life on the frontier, also enjoying its pleasures and its opportunities. His memory forms a connecting link between the primitive past and the progressive present and he justly deserves mention among the leading early settlers of this part of the state. His education was acquired in the district schools, which he attended through the winter months, while in the summer seasons he worked upon the farm. He early became familiar with farm work in every department and assisted in the cultivation of the old homestead until the death of his father, when he took entire charge and for ten years operated the farm. The youngest of the heirs having then attained majority, the property was divided and Sampson ROWE removed to his present residence, which is an excellent farm of three hundred and ninety acres on section 24, Whitefield township. This was a part of the old homestead which he inherited and also the portion of a younger brother from whom he purchased it. As the years passed by and he saw opportunity for judicious investment he extended the boundaries of his farm until it now comprises over five hundred acres. He owns altogether one thousand acres of land in Marshall county and is therefore one of its most extensive realty holders. For some years he gave much attention to feeding cattle and hogs and has likewise been a breeder of horses. He is also engaged in raising sheep and at all times fine grades of stock have been found upon his place, while his fields have been carefully tilled and have brought forth rich crops. He has lived a life of industry and enterprise and has displayed keen business discernment in the management of his property and the further purchase of land.

Mr. ROWE was married on the 20th of March, 1872, to Miss Ellen S. TIDMARSH, who was born in Wiltshire, England, and was brought to America when but six years of age by her parents, Abel and Elizabeth (WILTS) TIDMARSH, who located in the neighborhood of ROWEs, Illinois, but subsequently took up their abode near Varna in Roberts township, Marshall county. Unto Mr. and Mrs. ROWE have been born seven children: William A., who married Bertha Leona GREEN and follows farming on section 16, Whitefield township; Edward Marshall, who married Amanda MILLER, of Henry, and also follows farming in the same neighborhood; Mrs. Ann Elizabeth COKER, a resident of Henry, Illinois; Henry Sampson, who follows farming on a place adjoining his father's home; Charles Garfield, who is connected with business interests in Henry; Francis Taylor and Eugene Lloyd, who are at home with their father and assist him in the work of the farm. There are now several grandchildren, William having six children, Edward three, Mrs. COKER one and Henry two children.

Mr. ROWE saw the beginnings of the republican party, became an endorser of its principles and since attaining his majority has given to it his strong and stalwart support but has never been a politician in the sense of office seeking. He holds membership in the Grange, and the family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church at Henry. From a very early period in the history of this county the name of ROWE has been an honored one here and the life of Sampson T. ROWE has added new luster to the record, because in all life's relations he has been upright and honorable and in business affairs has been straightforward and trustworthy, never taking advantage of the necessities of his fellowmen in any trade transaction but depending for his prosperity upon unfaltering perseverance, unabating energy and careful investment.

Extracted July 2011 by Norma Hass from Past and Present of Marshall and Putnam Counties Illinois, 1907.

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