William H. GERMAN, residing on a fine farm
of two hundred acres on section 15, Hopewell township, and who
is also the owner of another farm of one hundred and twenty
acres on section 14, of the same township, while making no
pretension of great ability in any particular manner, is yet a
man who has drawn around him many friends who admire his honesty
of heart and such qualities that go to make up the trustful man.
His father, John GERMAN, was a native of
John GERMAN grew to manhood on his father’s
The subject of this sketch was born March
12, 1840, on Ox Bow Prairie, near Magnolia, Putnam county,
Returning home, Mr. GERMAN resumed his
occupation of farming, and November 12, 1863, married Miss Ada
E. STEWART, a native of
To Mrs. And Mrs. GERMAN eight children have
been born, three of whom are now living – Charles Stewart, Moses
Samuel and Edwin Schon. Immediately after marriage, Mr. and Mrs.
GERMAN commenced their domestic life upon a farm in Putnam
county, and there rented land until 1866. He then purchased a
small farm on Clear creek, in Hennepin township, Putnam county,
which was then unimproved timber land. He at once commenced its
improvement and after remaining there until 1881 sold out and
removed to his present location in
While engaged in hunting on the 23d of
August, 1873, Mr. GERMAN accidentally shot himself in the left
arm, necessitating its amputation above the elbow.
Notwithstanding this unfortunate occurrence, he seems to get
along as well as most men who have the use of both hands and
arms. Fraternally he is a member of
Mrs. GERMAN, who was born January 15, 1844,
was reared on the farm and received a good education in the
district schools, preparing herself as a teacher, and for
several terms taught in the public schools of Putnam county,
Extracted March 2011 by Norma Hass from The Biographical Record of Bureau, Marshall and Putnam Counties, Illinois, 1896.
William H. GERMAN is a retired farmer, who since 1899 has made his home in Henry. He was born in Putnam county, Illinois, March 12, 1840, and is one of the eight children of John and Cassandra (SMITH) GERMAN. The father was born in Pennsylvania and was of German descent. He came to Illinois in 1832 the year of the Black Hawk war and located near Magnolia. An uncle entered for him a tract of land and he devoted his remaining years to farming, meeting the usual experiences, privations, pleasures and opportunities of pioneer life in the early days and subsequently enjoying the advantages which came through an advanced civilization. He held membership in the Methodist Episcopal church, took an active interest in its work and served as class leader. His political allegiance was given to the democracy. He died in 1863 at the age of sixty-six years, while his wife, who was a native of Ohio, passed away in 1840. She, too, was a devoted member of the Methodist church. Of their eight children Samuel is now deceased; Moses died in 1902 at the age of eighty years; Maria has also passed away; Rachel is the wife of Calvin SHIELDS of Putnam county, Illinois; Susan H. is the widow of Henry HANNUM; Elizabeth is the widow of Young GLENN, who is in Oxbow, Putnam county; Malinda was the wife of Dan HARNEY and both are now deceased.
William H. GERMAN, the youngest member of the family, was reared to farm life and has always carried on general agricultural pursuits. He prospered in his undertakings and is now the owner of a valuable property of three hundred and twenty acres lying in Hopewell township. There he engaged in tilling of the soil for a number of years and improved an excellent property, adding many modern equipments to his farm, whereon he resided until 1899, when he retired from active business cares and took up his abode in Henry. The only interruption to his business cares had been his service in the Civil war, for he had enlisted in defense of the Union cause, becoming a member of Company B, Seventy-seventh Illinois Infantry, with which he remained for almost two years, when he was honorably discharged on account of disability. He then returned to his farm and continuously carried on agricultural pursuits until his labors had brought to him a handsome competence sufficient to supply him with the comforts and many of the luxuries of life throughout his remaining days.
Mr. GERMAN was married November 12, 1863, to Miss Ada E. STEWART, who was born in Hennepin, Illinois, January 15, 1844, a daughter of John E. and Sophia STEWART. Her father was a farmer by occupation and on coming to Illinois settled in Putnam county in 1835. Mr. and Mrs. GERMAN have had eight children: Cassandra S., John H., Nancy E., Gillie M. and William C., all now deceased; Charles S., an optician and jeweler; Moses S., who follows farming; and Edwin S., of Henry, Illinois.
Mr. GERMAN is a member of Henry post, G. A. R., and thus maintains pleasant relations with his old army comrades. He has been as loyal to his country in days of peace as when he wore the blue uniform of the nation and followed the old flag upon southern battlefields. He is a public spirited man and local advancement and national progress are both causes dear to his heart. In business affairs he has a most creditable record as one who is ever straightforward and honorable in his dealings, his successful accomplishment resulting from his diligence and enterprise. Mrs. GERMAN is a member of the Women's Relief Corps.
Extracted July 2011 by Norma Hass from Past and Present of Marshall and Putnam Counties Illinois, 1907.