The prosperous and well-to-do farmer whose name initiates this review, Jerry W. Wakey, is a native of Otter Creek township, LaSalle county, Illinois, and dates his birth August 21, 1859. He is a son of William Wakey, deceased, one of the prominent early settlers and respected citizens of this country. He was born, reared and educated in Germany and came as a young man to the United States, locating shortly afterward in LaSalle county, Illinois, where he married and made permanent settlement. His widow, Elizabeth Wakey, who is still a resident of this county, was born and reared in Perry county, Pennsylvania.
Jerry W. was reared on his father's farm, receiving his education in the public schools, and at home was early taught that honesty and industry form the foundation of all true success. He remained at home, assisting his father in the farm work until he attained his majority. Starting out in life for himself, he was well equipped by careful training, and it was but natural that he should succeed in his operations. He is now the owner of a' fine farm of two hundred and forty acres, located on section 28, Grand Rapids township, and ranking as one of the best farms in the township, and his residence, which was built in 1896, at a cost of two thousand dollars, is of modern architectural design, and shows by both its interior and exterior surroundings that its owner is not only a prosperous man, but also that he and his family are people of culture and refinement. Among other improvements on his farm may be mentioned the commodious barn and other buildings, and the windmill, which furnishes the power for bringing water from a depth of two hundred feet and supplying it to convenient places for use, in the residence, milkhouse, etc
Mr. Wakey was married February 3, 1887, to Miss Luemma Woodward, a native of LaSalle county and a daughter of George B, Woodward, who died in 1892, her mother having passed away in 1867. Mrs. Wakey was educated in Lincoln, Illinois, and is one of a family of two, her brother being J. W. Woodward, of Grand Ridge, this state. Mr. and Mrs. Wakey have one son. Earl Rodner, born June 22, 1892.
Both Mr. Wakey and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, being prominent and active in the same, and for years they have been interested in Sabbath-school work. Politically he is a Republican, and has filled some local offices, such as that of road commissioner, etc. Frank, genial and hospitable, Mr. Wakey has a large acquaintance and a corresponding number of friends.
Extracted by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois published in 1900, volume 1, pages 137-138.