Marshall County


J. W. HOLETON, on of the energetic and progressive farmers of Evans township, resides upon a farm of one hundred and forty acres of well-improved land, which he owns on section 21, and is now devoting his attention to its cultivation with most excellent results. He is honored and respected by the entire community, who look upon him as one of their most wide-awake farmers and model citizens.

His father, Francis H. HOLETON, who was of Scotch descent, was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, in 1818, there grew to manhood and was united in marriage with Hannah COCKERELL, whose birth occurred in Loudoun county, Virginia, in 1814. She was the daughter of Elias and Sarah (BUTLER) COCKERELL, with whom she removed to Muskingum county, Ohio, in 1824. After their marriage the young couple made their home upon a farm in that county until 1856, when they went to Iowa, but in the spring of the following year came to Marshall county, Illinois, where for six years they rented a farm. The father then purchased the farm now owned by the heirs of John KANE, then in its primitive condition, and he continued its cultivation and improvement upon his removal to Vermilion county, this state. Upon his farm there he lived a comparatively retired life until his death on the 4th of April, 1888. The mother, who still survives him, finds a pleasant home with our subject. Both were earnest and consistent members of the Methodist church and he took an active part in the Sunday school. Of the five children born to them, three grew to maturity – Edith, deceased, wife of Jacob M. BRENN, by whom she had one child, Hannah Thayer; J. W., of this sketch, and George H., of Omaha, Nebraska, who married Lizzie OGLE.

Mr. HOLETON, whose name introduces this notice, first opened his eyes to the light April 23, 1845, in Muskingum county, Ohio, and was twelve years of age when he became a resident of Marshall county. After pursuing his studies for some time in the district schools, he completed his literary course at the old seminary in Wenona, and he remained at home until reaching manhood. On the 1st of April, 1869, he was united in marriage with Miss Edith OLIVE, who was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, in 1846, and died in 1872, leaving two children – Walter O., of Vermilion county, and Jesse M., deceased.

Mr. HOLETON was again married January 31, 1876, his second union being with Mrs. Susan GAGE, nee WASHBURN, a daughter of Ira F. WASHBURN, who was born at Sackett’s Harbor, New York, in 1813, and became one of the early settlers of Rock county, Wisconsin. In his native place the father married Jane E. PRATT, who was born in the same county in 1824, and in 1834 he emigrated to Wisconsin, where he opened up a new farm. His death occurred October 31, 1889, and his wife passed away April 29, 1878. They held membership with the Baptist church, in which he served as deacon and took an active part in its work. In their family were four children, namely: Louisa, wife of James A. MILLETT, of Nebraska, by whom she has five children; George W., also of Nebraska, who was one of the brave boys in blue during the civil war; Mrs. HOLETON, and Frank F., of Arkansas, who is married and has two children.

Mrs. HOLETON, who was born in Rock county, Wisconsin, in 1846, was educated in the district schools and at the seminary at Fulton, that state. By her former marriage she has one child, Georgia Leone, wife of Eugene CUSAC, of Bennington township, Marshall county, and the mother of one child, Beulah. Six children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. HOLETON – Frank H., Eddie W., Edith M., Edna S., Gracie E., and Winifred M.

It was in 1870 that our subject settled upon his present farm, then all raw prairie land, but has now placed it under a high state of cultivation and devotes his time and attention exclusively to his farming interests, raising principally grain. His ballot is cast in support of the men and measures of the republican party, has served as road commissioner and school director, and is an intelligent, industrious man, who well deserves the regard of those with whom he has so long made his home.

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

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