The farming industry of Serena township, LaSalle county, has in the
subject of this sketch, Ralph E. Kember, an enterprising factor, — a young
man upon whom early devolved the care of a farm and who has always proved
himself equal to every emergency.
Mr. Kember was born June 14, 1863, in the town of Serena, Illinois, a son of the well-known and much respected pioneer, William Kember. The feeble health of the latter caused him, while yet in the prime of life and while his son Ralph was a boy in his teens, to relinquish the active duties of the farm, and they naturally fell to the son, who, upon the father's death, became the head of the establishment. He was then nineteen. Two years later his mother died. He has continued to reside upon the home place and successfully conduct its operations, and has never been absent from home for any length of time except on two occasions, once making a trip to Michigan and at another time to Canada. His efforts as a farmer have met with that reward that wisdom and industry combined always bring, and he is thus ranked as one of the thrifty and successful men of his township.
Mr. Kember was married June 22, 1892, in Freedom, Illinois, to Ann E., a daughter of William Dolder and wife, nee Morsch. Mr. Dolder died some years ago, leaving the following named children: Herman; Mrs. Kember; Louise, wife of E. A. Stoetzel, of Chicago; and William Dolder, of Freedom. The widowed mother is also a resident of the village of Freedom. Mr. and Mrs. Kember have three children, namely: Delbert William, born August 31, 1893; Winnie Esther, born May 20, 1895; and Rachel Norma, born February 12, 1897.
Mr. Kember is a member of the Republican party. At present he is the incumbent of the constable's office, and sees that peace and order are maintained in Serena. Both Mr. and Mrs. Kember are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, holding their membership at Zion Hill, Serena township; and he is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America.
Extracted 19 Dec 2018 by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois, published in 1900, volume 2, pages 573-574.