|Birth: ||Mar. 4, 1833|
|Death: ||Dec. 18, 1900|
JAMES R. STEAGALL is one of the extensive farmers and prosperous business men of Pope County, owning a well-improved tract of land on section 32, township 13, range 6, where he carries on general farming and makes a specialty of raising fine stock. He owns a herd of registered Shorthorn cattle, and in addition to this deals extensively in horses, cattle and hogs, and raises large quantities of corn, wheat, oats and hay. In the year 1888 he engaged in the mercantile business, carrying a general stock of goods in a well-equipped store in the village of Columbus. He is a prominent man in political and public circles, having filled various offices of trust and importance within the gift of the people. For four years, from 1866 until 1870, he was Justice of the Peace, served one term as County Commissioner, and for one term was a member of the Twenty-ninth General Assembly. The subject of this life history was born in Rutherford County, Tenn., on the 4th of March, 1833. His father, Obediah G. Steagall, who was a native of Virginia, was a farmer, owning a considerable tract of land in Tennessee, where he followed agricultural pursuits and stock-raising during almost his entire life. His death occurred on the old homestead in 1890, at which time he had reached the good old age of eighty-six years. Our subject's mother, who was in her maiden days Miss Mary Hodge, was born in Tennessee, and there passed her entire life. James R. Steagall attended school in Lincoln County, of his native State, for about two terms only, the opportunities in the way of education of former days being extremely limited and little to be compared with those afforded the youth of these times. The schoolhouse was made of logs, with puncheon floor, and during the winter was heated by means of a huge fireplace. A gap was left along one side of the wall for a window, which was unprotected by window glass, and consequently it was rather cold during the winter. In very severe weather the floor was remove and a fire built in the middle of the room. The seats were made by splitting open logs, hewing one side fairly smooth and making a sort of a bench with four pins for legs. In spite of all his discouragements and disadvantages, however, our subject was blessed with an active and intelligent mind, and made the best of what opportunities he had, studying and reading by himself, and thus acquiring a practical knowledge of men and affairs, which has served him in good stead. He remained under the parental roof until reaching his majority, devoting himself to assisting his father in the homestead. At the age of twenty-one our subject started out of his own accord to make his way in the world, first commencing in 1854 to farm on shares, and continuing on that basis for about ten years in his native State. In the year 1864 he removed to this State, going by railroad to Nashville, whence he proceed by boat to Golconda. His first purchase of land in this county was on sections 23 and 26, township 11, range 6, where he continued to live until 1877, or for thirteen years. During that time he added more land to his original tract from time to time, until he owned over eleven hundred acres, of which he has since disposed of to good advantage. His present place comprises some six hundred acres, which are all under good cultivation and thoroughly improved. Mr. Steagall is a progressive and enterprising farmer, using the most approved modern methods and the latest devices for saving labor and carrying on general agriculture. On January 5, 1854, occurred the marriage of Mr. Steagall and Miss Nancy Catherine Hix. Both Mrs. Steagall and her parents are natives of Tennessee, where her marriage was celebrated with our subject. There union was blessed with a family of twelve children, ten living, who in order of birth are as follows: William O., Elizabeth, Melissa, Thomas R., Mary M., Eliphus R., Laura, Arthur H., John R. and Aloconna. Mr. Steagall has given his children good school advantages, as he has felt the need for such preparation for the battle of life for himself greatly at times, and has carried out his resolve that his children should be thus blessed. The family are good citizens, much respected in the communities where they make their homes. Mrs. Steagall, one daughter and three sons are members of the United Baptist Church, while three daughters are members of the Presbyterian Church. Our subject is a member of Golconda Lodge No. 131, A.F. & A.M., and also of Chapter No. 162, of that place. He votes the straight Republican ticket and has always taken a commendable interest in political and local affairs, doing all in his power to advance all worthy measures as a true American citizen should. By his worthy qualities, strictly honorable career and unblemished repution has won a host of friends, who hold him in the highest esteem.
Portrait and Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope and Hardin Counties Illinois, Chicago Biographical Publishing Company, 1893, Pages 334-335.
Obediah G. Steagall (1806 - 1892)
Mary Hodge Steagall (1807 - 1885)
Nancy Catherine Hix Steagall (1835 - 1910)
Mary Minerva Steagall (1867 - 1945)*
Arthur Haines Steagall (1875 - 1936)*
James Rayburn Steagall (1833 - 1900)
Elizabeth Matilda Steagall Ray (1835 - 1913)*
Mary Steagall Dillingham (1837 - 1903)*
G. W. Steagall (1850 - 1914)*
Tennessee Steagall Williams (1851 - 1898)*
Created by: CJSwann
Record added: Jul 23, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 39778140
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