Located on a fine farm in Otter Creek township, LaSalle county, Illinois, near the town of Streator, we find the subject of this sketch, William Joseph Horn, son of John Horn, deceased, for many years a prominent and influential citizen of the county.
John Horn was born in Germany in 1833, and in early life came to this country. With the exception of some six years, when he worked at the carpenter's trade, he spent his life in agricultural pursuits. In 1852 he made the overland journey to California, experiencing the usual hardships and privations incident to a trip across the plains at that day. Being a successful hunter, he killed a considerable amount of game on the way. At the end of a year spent in California he returned east, making the journey by the isthmus route. In LaSalle county, Illinois, he acquired a large farm, comprising six hundred and fifty acres, on which he built a commodious residence, large barns, etc., and on which are several groves. He chose for his wife Miss Theresa Burgall, a native of Alsace, France, a young woman well educated in both the French and German languages. To them were born ten children, eight of whom grew to adult age. They are as follows: William Joseph, whose name initiates this review; Frances M, Johnson; George Henry, of Otter Creek township, LaSalle county; Mary A. Schlachter, of Streator, Illinois; Neal, of Otter Creek township; Lizzie R. and Katie B. Kuhn, of Grand Rapids township, LaSalle county; and Sarah, of Streator, Illinois. The two deceased were James and Amelia. The mother of these children is still living, but their father died in February, 1892, at the age of fifty-nine years. He was a member of the I. O. O. F., and gave his support politically to the Republican party.
William Joseph Horn was born in the township in which he now lives, January 28, 1861; was reared on his father's farm and educated in the public schools near his home. At the age of twenty-four he left home and went to Comanche county, Kansas, where he resided eight years, engaged in the stock business. At the death of his father he returned home and took charge of the home farm, and has carried on its operations ever since.
Mr. Horn was married, at the age of twenty-nine years, at Cold Water, Comanche county, Kansas, to Miss Nora E. Kollar, who was born and educated at South Bend, Indiana, daughter of David and Elizabeth Kollar, now residents of Oklahoma. Mrs. Horn is one of seven children - Delia Merrill, Joseph, Franklin, Horace, Nora E., Clara Barber and Almira Pierce. Mr. and Mrs. Horn have four sons - Leon G., John David, Franklin Elmer and James Foster.
Mr. Horn is a member in good standing of the Modern Woodmen of America and the Knights of Pythias. Politically he is a Republican.
Extracted by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois published in 1900, volume 1, pages 180-181.