Tobias WHITMER lives on section 26, Whitefield township, where he is engaged in farming and also in the manufacture of brick. He is, moreover, entitled to representation in this volume from the fact that he was one of the veterans of the Civil war. His birth occurred in Niagara county, New York, April 5, 1842, his parents being Abraham and Elizabeth (HARE) WHITMER. The father was a native of Langston, Pennsylvania, and in early life learned and followed the milling business. He also engaged in farming for many years. In 1853 he removed from New York to Illinois, settling in Will county, Illinois, and his remaining days were devoted to general agricultural pursuits. He died about twenty years ago. His wife, who was also a native of Pennsylvania, died twenty-two years ago. In their family were eleven children, but only five now survive, namely: Mrs. Sarah SHAW, a resident of Canada; Samuel, who follows farming in Iowa; Abraham, who is living retired in Steuben county, Illinois, and Jacob, who is located in Pueblo, Colorado. The other living member of the family is Tobias WHITMER of this review, who was a young lad of about eleven years when he accompanied his parents on their removal from the east to Illinois. He pursued his education in the public schools of Joliet and in early manhood, his patriotic spirit being aroused, he offered his services to the government in defense of the Union and enlisted as a private of Company I, Forty-seventh Illinois infantry. He enrolled at Henry, having come to this city during the war times. With his command he went to the front and' participated in a number of important engagements. Throughout the greater part of his life Mr. WHITMER has engaged in general agricultural pursuits and is now a farmer of Whitefield township, living on section 26, where he rents forty acres of land from Timothy HUNT. He is also engaged in the manufacture of brick, having a plant for this purpose upon the farm.
Mr. WHITMER was married in 1868 to Miss Sarah PORCH, of Illinois, and unto them have been born eight children: Mrs. Ida DWYER, living in Whitefield township; Mrs. Delia NIGHTSONGER, a resident of Sparland; Mrs. Lulu DWYER, whose home is in Bureau county; Mrs. Clara NILES, a resident of Sparland; Mrs. Pearl STEELE; Floyd, Harold and Homer, all at home.
Mr. WHITMER votes with the prohibition party and is a stanch advocate of the cause of temperance. He believes this to be one of the most important questions before the people of the country today and he does everything in his power to inculcate among those with whom he comes in contact an opposition to the liquor traffic. He and his family are members of the United Brethren in Christ and he is one of the ministers of the church giving much of his life to Christian work. He has led an active and useful life, upright and honorable, and his influence has ever been for good, being strongly exerted in behalf of justice and truth and also for the best development and progress of the county.
Extracted July 2011 by Norma Hass from Past and Present of Marshall and Putnam Counties Illinois, 1907.