Putnam County


who for over forty years has made his home in Putnam county, is both widely and favorably known, and is now practically living retired, at the city of Hennepin, surrounded by many warm friends. He was born in Brownsville, Pennsylvania, December 6, 1820, and when a mere child was taken to Warren county, Ohio, by his parents, Joseph and Julia (Elma) Wood. On reaching manhood he was there married October 6, 1852, the lady of his choice being Miss Martha Crosby, whose birth occurred nine miles from Philadelphia in Delaware county, Pennsylvania. One daughter was born to them — Mary Ida, now the wife of Adam Deck of Hennepin.

Until twenty-four years of age Mr. Wood worked by the month as a farm hand, received from nine to nine dollars and a half, and for the following eight years rented land, but accumulated nothing. After his marriage he leased his father-in-law's place, and on the close of a year had saved five hundred dollars. Coming to Putnam county, Illinois, in 1854, Mr. Wood sold the one hundred and sixty acre tract which he owned in Central Illinois and purchased two eighty acre tracts near Mt. Palatine, where he made his home for thirteen years. He was one of the first to attempt to raise hogs on the prairies and none were more successful, winning many premiums at the fairs where he exhibited. He next lived at a neat place at the edge of Hennepin, where he expended five thousand dollars on improvements, but after some years removed to his present location — the Fairfield house — an old landmark opposite the court house, where he has made extensive improvements, and now has a most desirable place. He has a valuable farm of five hundred and forty-eight acres on the liver below Hennepin, which he rents, deriving therefrom a good income. He also owns one hundred and sixty acres near Atlantic, in Cass county, Iowa. He has bred some fine Kentucky horses, but met with poor success in that undertaking, suffering the loss of some valuable animals. He now devotes his time and attention to the management of his little home in Hennepin, and to overseeing his fine farm on the river.

Politically, Mr. Wood is an ardent republican, but has never cared for the honors or emoluments of public office, never having filled any political position aside from that of assessor of his township. Since a boy he has been lame, an affection of one hip, and though handicapped in this way has been remarkably successful in his life work, and justly ranks among the most energetic and progressive agriculturists of Putnam county.

In religious belief Mr. Wood is a Universalist, having held to that belief fifty-two years, and the society in whose house of worship he sung as a member of the choir for thirteen years have recently erected a new church building at Springboro, Warren county, to which he contributed one hundred dollars. On coming to Hennepin he also gave liberally to the support of both the Congregational and Methodist Episcopal churches as there was no church of his choice in the place, and his daughter for a number of years was organist in the former. At one time he invited a Universalist preacher to Hennepin and that church was promised him for his use, but the minister of the church refused its use to any "such trash." At the Methodist church he received no better treatment, with one exception, when they allowed him to hold services. Mr. Wood is a pleasant, genial gentleman, easily winning friends, which he always retains.

Source: The Biographical Record of Bureau, Marshall and Putnam Counties, Illinois  published in 1896, page 142.

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