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1877 History of La Salle County Illinois

Sketch of the Pioneer Settlers - Earl

The town of Earl embraces the Congressional Township 36 North, of Range 3. It is the center town on the north line of the county. Indian creek enters the town near the middle on the north, runs southwest to Section 19, and then southeast, having a fine growth of timber along most of its course. It was settled quite sparsely along its banks commencing in 1834, until, in 1853, the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad was built through the town, after which the influx of population was rapid.

Charles H. Sutphen was the pioneer settler in the town of Earl, in company with John R. Dow. They came from Boston, made claims and located at the head of the grove in April, 1834. They found two families just arrived from Indiana, J. Ross, and a Mr. Johnson, who located on the south side of the grove and made some improvement that summer. They sold their claim to McClasky & Philips, and left in 1835.

Mr. Sutphen brought his family in the month of October, and built a double log house on the site of the village. The land came in market in 1839, when Mr. Sutphen purchased one thousand acres where Earlville now stands, and has occupied it as a stock farm for about twenty years.

He was one of the first Justices for Indian Precinct, and held the office continuously for fifteen years, being the oldest Justice in the county when he resigned.

He had a family of six sons and three daughters; Charles T. Sutphen was the first white male born in the township, he and George are in California; Albert, is in Aurora; Ford, in Missouri; Gilbert and Weller, in Iowa; Sarah, married S. Cook, now deceased; Carrie T., was the first white child born in the town — married William H. Graham, of St. Louis; Mary, married O. C. Gray, of Ottawa, and her second husband was Dr. Canfield, of Ottawa — she is now deceased.

Mrs. Sutphen, Elizabeth H. Dow, died in 1870; Mr. Sutphen removed to Joliet in 1871, and married the widow of H. D. Higginbotham.

John R. Dow returned to Boston in the fall of 1834, and his two brothers occupied his claim. He is now living in New York.

D. A. Ballard came from Boston, in the fall of 1834; his Wife was a sister of Mrs. Sutphen; he returned to Boston in 1842. Two sons remain — one died at Earl two years since; the other is at Aurora.

Albert Dow came from Boston in 1835. He married Miss Frances Johnson, of Boston, and settled on the claim left by John R. Dow; his wife died soon, and he married Martha Miles, and had one son and two daughters; he is now living in Chicago. He resided in Ottawa several years.

Warren Dow, from Boston, came in 1834. He married Miss Alice B. Champney, of Boston; has one son and three daughters; he now lives in Wisconsin. He resided in Ottawa several years, and in Marseilles.

Amos Foster, from Massachusetts, came in 1834; married in Ottawa; removed to Wisconsin.

Corrin Doane, from Boston, came in 1834; married Harriet Johnson — his second wife was Hannah Stilson, sister to S. T. Stilson. He died in May, 1836. He had two sons: Hazen, married and lives in Earl; Samuel J., died in the army.

John T. Cook, brother-in-law to Sutphen, came in 1834; went to Galena, then to Chicago in the lumber trade; his wife died in Chicago of cholera.

John Thornton, and wife, Hannah Benedict, from St. Lawrence County, N. Y., in 1835; he died in 1865. He had three daughters: Lurania, married Samuel O. Carter; Roby, married Wm. Tmil; Sarah, married O. J. Wilson.

Samuel O. Carter, from St. Lawrence County, N.Y., in 1835; stopped near Chicago three months in December; settled on S. 17. Wife, Lurania Thornton; has three sons: Adolphus married widow Doane; Heman H. married Malvina Philips; Joel at home.

Alonzo Carter, from St. Lawrence County, N. Y., in 1836; now a Methodist preacher in Ohio.

Levi Carter, from same place in 1836; married widow Jewett; now in Sandoval, Marion County, Illinois.

Ferdinand Carter, from the same place in 1836; he died 1854. His widow, Deborah Breese, died 1867.

Benjamin Carter, from same place in 1836; went to Green County 1860; now there.

Sylvester Carter came in 1836; he died of cholera in 1849; first wife, Miss Christy; second, Mary Breese, widow; third, Lucy Pine. Of his children, James Carter is in Livingston County; Joseph is teaching in Normal; Lucien in Livingston County.

Urial Carter, married Eliza Rogerson; now in Arkansas; has seven or eight children; left here in 1855.

Joel Carter, father of the foregoing seven sons, came from the bank of the St. Lawrence river inSt. Lawrence County, N. Y., in 1836; died in 1853, aged 75.

Jolin Currier came from Vermont to Cincinnati, and here in 1838; wife, Eliza Wallace; ten children.

Frank Ransted, from Vermont to Cincinnati and from there here in 1836; his wife died 1855; he has several children.

Alexander Brown, from Cheshire, Mass., July 1838; a bachelor; died 1867.

Andrew Brown came in 1838.

Allen Brown, and wife, Miss Best, in 1838; has one son and three daughters.

The above three brothers came from Berkshire County, Mass.

O. J. Wilson, from St. Lawrence County, N. Y., 1835; left there Nov. 16th, when 17 years of age, and came by steamer to Hamilton Bay, then on foot to near Chicago in company with Uri Carter; stopped with Samuel and Levi Carter a few days, then went to Indiana and spent the winter, and in December, 1836, reached Big Indian creek in LaSalle County; bought a claim on S. 21, which came in market in 1839.

Mr. Wilson's history is a striking example of the result of industry and economy. From the poor boy trudging on foot through the weary distance to reach the West, he has become the possessor of wealth, being a large land owner, farmer and banker. He married Sarah Thornton; his children are, Thomas, who married Mary Wood, lives near; William, who married Nettie Doane, lives in Earlville, a banker; Edwin, in California; Abram, married Frances Pope, lives in Earlville; Richard, Caroline, John T., Charlotte Ann, and Osman John, are at home

Major D. Wallace, from Orange County, Vt., in 1837; the only physician here for ten years; left two sons, Charles married the widow Scott at Earl, owns the Wallace House; George married Miss White.

James Wood, from New York in 1840; he died 1853; settled on S. 6; four children: Peter; David; Lovina married James Wallace; Elisha.

David Smith, from South Adams, Mass., 1840; died 1864.

Daniel Smith, son of foregoing, came in 1838; married Harriet Burt.

Miles Rouse, came from New York, in 1 834; died in 1860; widow still living here; Ellen, married Mr. Lynn; Eliza, married; Martha, married Allen McGregor.

George Rogerson came from Brockville, Canada, in 1838; George is in Ford County; Eliza, married Urial Carter, in Arkansas. Mr. R. died in 1840.

Edward Cook came in 1835; died in California, 20 years ago; left a widow and son. All have left.

Russel Bliss, came from North Adams to Ohio, and from there here, in 1837.

James M. Philips, came from Pennsylvania, in 1836; he had a difficulty regarding a disputed claim with his neighbor. Moss, and unfortunately killed him; he was tried for murder and convicted of manslaughter, but was discharged, from a defect in the law. It is due to Mr. Philips to state, that his neighbors all agree that he has led a blameless life since; has a large family of children who are much respected. He sent five sons to the war.

Mr. Moss, who was killed by Philips, was from Vermont; he was making a farm preparatory to moving his family, when he met his fate.

Abram Foster, and wife, Millie White, came from Bradford County, Pennsylvania, in 1836; settled one mile north of Earlville, on the creek; he died many years since, leaving seven children: Betsey, married Conrad Smith, of Northville; Millie, married Frederick Smith, of Northville; Elisha, is deceased; Alfred, went to California; William, died here, his widow is still living; Willard, went West; Abram settled on the creek, now in Colorado.

Amzi Foster, grandson of Abram, came from Bradford Co., Pennsylvania, in 1837; he married Mary J. App; has three children. He has resided in Ottawa for many years.

Samuel T. Stilson, born in Connecticut, came from Chatauqua County, N. Y., 1839; has been a farmer, merchant, grain dealer, and banker; successful, and now retired. His first wife was Ellen Wood, who died in 1852; his second wife was Sarah Lukins. Has had five children; two are living.

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