Biographical paragraphs of the residents of Bennington Township, Marshall County, Illinois, as penned by Ellsworth Spencer in Records of the Olden Time, published in 1880.
Mr. SIGNER is a carpenter by occupation, and was born in Pennsylvania. He came to LaSalle county, Illinois, in 1849, and to Marshall county in 1873. He served three years and one month in Co. C Fourth U. 8. Cavalry, and was in the battles of Culpepper Court House, the seige of Vicksburg, at Chattanooga, Fort Donelson, and numerous smaller engagements. March 28, 1870, he married Mrs. Irene WILLIAMSON, whose maiden name was PHELPS. They have two children, Frank O. and Charles I., and Mrs. S. has one child, George E. WILLIAMSON, by her first marriage. Mr. WILLIAMSON, Mrs. SIGNER's first husband, served three years during the war for the suppression of the rebellion, in Co. C, 72d Illinois Inf. He participated in 21 pitched battles, was wounded seven times, and died of wounds received in the battle of Shiloh. He held the rank of sergeant.
Mr. WARD is a farmer living on section 18, and cultivates 165 acres of lard. He was born in Franklin county, Indiana, and came to Marshall county in 1859. October 1, 1874, he married Sarah A. SKELTON, and they have one child, Robert A.
Mr. DORSEY is a citizen of Bennington township, and is by occupation a farmer. He was born in West Verginia, in 1831, and came to Marshall county, Illinois, in 1869. He married Joanna HOLLIDAY in 1851, and six children have been born to them, - William C., Samuel, James Fillmore, Mary Bell, Ortie and Charlie. During the war he entered the Union army and served in Co. G, 17th W. Va. Inf. At its close he came to Rutland, and for some time followed merchandising, after which he bought the farm he now occupies. He owns 240 acres of land, in a high state of cultivation, with a fine residence and outbuildings. He has been township supervisor, has filled other official positions, and is a leading and influential citizen.
Mr. VAUGHN is a citizen of Woodford county, residing near the line between Woodford county and Bennington township, Marshall county. He is a farmer by occupation, and was born in Marshall county, June 18th, 1837. In 1868 he married Annett SWEET, and two children have been born to them, Alva and Cora. Mr. VAUGHN served one year during the war, in Co. D, 11th Ill. Inf., and was in the battle of Mobile and several other engagements.
Mr. TROWBRIDGE is an eloquent and influential minister in the Christian church, living in Bennington, of which township he was one of the first settlers. He was born in Washington county, Indiana, in 1826, and married Sarah STAFFORD in 1851. They have four children - Thomas L., Mary L. EVANS, Nancy L and Sarah L. Thomas and family are members of the church of Christ. Mr. TROWBRIDGE is among the very few ministers who are successful farmers or business men, and enjoy a competence earned outside of the profession. He has a large farm with good improvements and when not at work for the Master follows the plow or the reaper. He is a good citizen, an eloquent divine and esteemed by all who know him.
Mrs. BROOKS was born in the State of New York, and there received her education. She was married in June, 1837, to Mr. BROOKS, and eight children were born to them, viz., John D., Cordelia KING, George W., Harriet M. WILDER, Charles E., Sarah E. STRATTON and Mary A. Another daughter, Leonora, died September 17, 1851. Mrs. BROOKS owns and cultivates 160 acres.
Mr. EDWARDS was born in Maryland, and when five years old his parents moved to Kentucky. He came to Illinois in 1831, spending one season in Putnam county, and teaching the first school ever taught on Clear Creek. He came to Shaw's Point in the spring of 1832, and lived there 36 years. He opened a large farm, was successful in business, and retired with a competence. He sold out to Reuben BROADDUS. In 1826 he married Mary B. EDWARDS, and ten children were born to them. Two died in infancy, three afterwards, and five are now living. William D. was a very promising lawyer who studied in Henderson, Ky., and began practice in Lacon, where he died. He died when 27 years old, and is buried in the Lacon cemetery. Mrs. EDWARDS died in 1875. The living children are Robert B., a lawyer of Lacon; Charles S., superintendent of schools; John, a farmer in Bennington; Lydia A. BELL, of Minouk, and Mary G. BREVOORT, of Rutland. Mr. EDWARDS lives near Rutland, and is still in the enjoyment of fair health. He has filled many responsible positions, and has been an influential citizen, highly esteemed, and deserving the good opinion of the community.
Mr. THOMPSON lives on section 21, where he owns and cultivates 240 acres. He was born in Belmont county, Ohio in 1825 married Amanda M. CUNDIFF, of East Virginia, in 1849, and came to this county the same season. They have eight children - John S., Susan J., Thomas F., Lucy A., Isaac O., Charles H., Eva B. and Willey W. He has served ten years as assessor, with satisfaction to all. He is a Democrat, but never blindly partisan, and supports those he believes to be the better men. He wields a large influence in his township, in looked to as an advisor in neighborhood differences, and exerts a large influence for good.
Extracted June 2011 from the Biographical Department in Records of the Olden Time