Among the men whose depth of character and fidelity to duty, combined with business ability and enterprise, have commanded for them the respect of their fellowmen and won for them prominence and success in business circles, is numbered Samuel W. McCULLOCH, president of the Marshall County Bank at Varna. His life record began in Cumberland county, Pennsylvania, on the 29th of August, 1846. His father, Robert C. McCULLOCH, was a native of the Keystone state and a farmer by occupation. He lived to the venerable age of eighty-four years, passing away in 1905, while his wife, who bore the maiden name of Rebecca WOODBURN and was also a native of Pennsylvania, died in 1900. In their family were two sons and two daughters: Samuel W.; John C., who is engaged in the furniture business in West Plains, Missouri; Mary E., the wife of J. E. BARNES, of Washburn, Woodford county; and Laura, who is living in Washburn.
Samuel W. McCULLOCH spent the first ten years of his life in the county of his nativity, during which time he began his education in the district schools there. He then accompanied his parents on their removal to Illinois, the family home being established in Richland township, Marshall county, near Washburn, where the father purchased land and improved a farm. Samuel W. McCULLOCH continued his education in the schools of Washburn, from which he was graduated, and then entered Monmouth College at the age of sixteen years. He left that institution to enlist in the Union army in 1864, when but seventeen years of .age, joining the boys in blue of Company C, Seventy-seventh Illinois Infantry. His company went through Kentucky and did duty at Vicksburg and in Louisiana and Alabama. He was in active service continuously from the time when he joined the army until mustered out at the close of the war, and displayed valor equal to many a veteran of twice his years.
Following his return home Mr. McCULLOCH was engaged in teaching school in Washburn for several years, after which he became connected with the grain business at that place for six or seven years. In connection with his father he built a large elevator at Washburn, and subsequent to his connection with the grain trade spent a few years in a bank at Washburn. In 1885 he removed to Varna and established the Marshall County Bank, a private institution, of which he is the president, while his son Ralph is the cashier. This enterprise has proven of value to the community, facilitating the transaction of business and at the same time has been a source of gratifying revenue to the owners.
In 1867 Mr. McCULLOCH was married to Miss Alice CLARK, a daughter of William CLARK, a resident farmer of Marshall county. She was born in Pennsylvania, and by her marriage has become the mother of four children. William C., who is engaged in the dry goods business in Eureka, Illinois, married Hattie SPANGLER and has two daughters. Robert W., a railroad official, who died at Varna, Illinois, October 17, 1906, lived in southern California, wedded Ella HOLSTROM and had one daughter. Frank C., who was engaged in the lumber business in California, and married Gail BROADDUS. Ralph married Mary L. LORD, at Varna, October 14, 1906, and is the cashier of the bank in Varna. This is one of the old financial institutions of the county, having been founded by Louis LINEBARGER in 1883, becoming the property of Mr. McCULLOCH in 1885. He is also engaged in the insurance business and has valuable real estate and farming interests. A man of resourceful business ability, he is never taken by surprise, but is always alert and enterprising, carefully controlling the interests which are under his supervision and enlarging the scope of his activities from time to time.
Mr. McCULLOCH holds membership in Highland lodge, No. 324, K. P., of Varna, of which he is now past chancellor, and he belongs to Varna camp, No. 155, M. W. A., in which he has filled all of the chairs. He is likewise a member of the Grand Army of the Republic and of the Methodist church, in the work of which he takes a very active and helpful part, serving at the present time as a trustee of the church and as superintendent of the Sunday-school. His political allegiance is given to the republican party and the cause of education has found in him a warm friend, doing active service in its behalf as school trustee and director both in Washburn and Varna. He is a representative citizen of business enterprise and discernment, who is watchful of opportunities and utilizes the means at hand to the best advantage, so that he seems to have compassed at any one point in his career the possibility for success at that point. Business integrity and enterprise are both synonymous with his name and he is justly accounted one of the leading men of his community, having wielded a wide influence in public affairs in the line of material, intellectual and moral progress.
Extracted July 2011 by Norma Hass from Past and Present of Marshall and Putnam Counties Illinois, 1907.