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Biography - ANDREW B. BREESE

Andrew Bray Breese, deceased, was one of the prominent men of Earlville, LaSalle county, where he had been engaged in the mercantile business for many years. He was a native of Newark, New Jersey, having been born April 29, 1824, and was a son of Bailey and Phoebe Breese, both of prominent New Jersey families. Mr. Breese was one of eleven children, five sons and six daughters. At the age of eighteen he came west with his parents, who settled in Paw Paw, this state, and about two years later moved to Grand Detour, where he entered upon his career as a dry goods merchant. Two years later he moved his store to Paw Paw, Illinois, and continued in the business there for fifteen years, when he came to Earlville and remained until his death. He was a veteran dry goods man, having been engaged in this business for forty-nine years, and his prosperity was assured from the start. He was a man of keen perception, a close observer, and displayed an acuteness in business that augured well for his success.

He was married in 1844 to Miss Mary E. Carber, a native of Bradford county, Pennsylvania, and a daughter of Jacob and Sabrina (Sweet) Carber. Jacob Carber and wife were natives of the state of New York, the former tracing his ancestry to Germany and the latter to England. He enlisted in the war of 181 2 at the age of seventeen years. He was well educated and taught school in the east during his early life, coming west about 1835 and settling in Scott county, Iowa, where he engaged in farming in the Mississippi bottom. Here he died, leaving two children, — Mrs. Breese and Andrew J. Carber, a farmer of Scott county, Iowa. Mrs. Breese was a school teacher in her early life, and it was while thus engaged in the vicinity of Paw Paw that Mr. Breese made her acquaintance. Mr. Breese died December 18, 1891, after an illness of only three days' duration. His sudden death was a severe blow to the whole community, to whom the news came as a shock, and business and social circles alike felt the blow. He had a happy disposition and always looked on the bright side of life, while jovial good nature always made him a favorite in any social gathering. He was a Democrat in politics, but did not seek emoluments of office. In religion he had the comforting faith of the Universalist, and went to meet his Maker with the trust of a confiding child in a loving, all-wise and merciful Father.

Mrs. Breese, his widow, resides in Earlville, and holds an interest in the business so successfully inaugurated by her husband. The firm is Breese & McKinney, the latter having bought an interest in the store soon after the death of Mr. Breese.

The union of Mr. and Mrs. Breese was without issue, but an adopted daughter, Ruth May, now the wife of John Buchanan, of Chicago, was the recipient of their loving care and bounty, finding at their hearthstone a parent's care and affection.

Extracted 26 Dec 2016 by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois published in 1900, volume 2, pages 436-437.

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