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Zealy Moss Holmes
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Birth: Feb. 8, 1866
Peoria County
Illinois, USA
Death: Mar. 5, 1947
Peoria County
Illinois, USA

Born in Medina Twp. Son of John & Lydia A. (Chambers) Holmes, husband of Nellie Frye, m. Feb 15, 1888.


Mar 1947
Peoria Journal Star


Last of Bradley's Original Board

Zealy Moss Holmes, 81, of Mossville, son of Peoria county pioneers and last of the original trustees of Bradley university, died at 2:35 a. m. Wednesday in St Francis hospital, where he had been since Feb. 21.
Grand-nephew of Mrs. Lydia Moss Bradley, founder of the university, he had been active during all of his adult life in the affairs of that institution, was a leader in farm circles and was a highly valued member of the community and church groups. Until he became ill on Feb. 8, eighty-first birthday, he has continued his duties as manager of the university's farm properties.
One of 10 children of John and Lydia A. Chambers Holmes, he was born Feb. 8. 1866 in Medina township, within a mile of his later home at Mossville. His father had come from Londonderry, Ireland, and settled in Peoria county in the 1830's. The boy was named for Mrs. Bradley's father Zealy Moss, who had been a Baptist clergyman and a quartermaster in the Revolutionary war.
Farm Leader

Zealy Holmes farmed for many years, after attending the grammar school at Alta and the academy at Dunlap. He was president of the Peoria County farm bureau for seven years, a member of its executive board for five years and vice-president of the Illinois farm bureau for three years. His father has been a large landowner, at one having 1,500 acres of Peoria and Marshall farmland.
When he was 30 years old, in 1896, Zealy Holmes was asked by Mrs. Bradley to serve as a trustee for the school she planned to establish here. Surprised, he went home to ask for advice. His father said, "Go ahead, take it. If you don't like the job you can always quit." Mrs. Bradley had said that she thought his knowledge of farm lands would be of value to the boars, even though he was younger that other trustees she elected.
Her choice proved wise, for the extensive Bradley farm properties in several Midwestern states later came under his supervision. For the past 25 years he has been farm manager for the Bradley endowed university, which was opened in 1897. Until his illness he had continued to travel throughout the Midwest to appraise farms for the estate.
Hall Named For Him
In 1936 an oil portrait of Mr. Holmes was unveiled by one of his granddaughters, then a student, in special ceremonies on the campus at the 40th Founder's day. Last October he was among the speakers at the 50th Founders' day exercises. His three sons attended Bradley, two of them living at the home of the founder while they were students here. Several of his grandchildren have also studied at Bradley and his youngest grandson, Donald C. Holmes, is now on the chemistry faculty there. The engineering building was named Holmes Hall a years ago at the time when Mr. Holmes had served 50 years as a trustee.
Mr. Holmes had nearly every office in the Medina township and fro 31 years he was treasurer of school funds. He was a lifelong Methodist, a member of the Mossville church, He was also a member of the Alta Masonic lodge No. 748, of Peoria consistory and the Mohammed temple, Shrine.
Like To Aid Others

Genial, kindly, rugged of physique and hearty in manner, Mr. Holmes was well-liked by all who knew him. He found his greatest pleasure in helping less fortunate people, and often he went far out of his way in thoughtfulness for others.
On Feb 14, 1888 he married Miss Nellie Frye of Richwoods township and the couple's 50th wedding anniversary was marked just two weeks ago.
Surviving are his wife; three sons, Maurice Frye Holmes of Richwoods township, Charles Wilbur Holmes of Edelstein and John Smith Holmes of Medina township; a brother, Charles Holmes of Dunlap; nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. All of his grandsons served as officers in World War II.
"Mr. Holmes's death is tremendous loss to all of us at Bradley, where he has been so devoted for over half a century it the task assigned him by founder," said President David B. Owen. "The full measure of his service can never be taken and the example he set by his energy, his hard work, and his friendly goodwill for all of us to admire and follow."
No Classes Half Day
Classes at the university will be dismissed from 1 to 4:10 p. m. Friday to enable faculty members and students to attend the funeral. The Bradley flag is at half-mast.
Funeral services will be a 2 p. m. Friday at the Mossville Methodist church, conducted by the Rev. A. R. McLaughlin of Union Congregational church here, former pastor of Mossville. Burial will be in Mt. Hawley cemetery.
Friends may call today from 2 to 5 p. m. at the Cumerford- Endsley memorial home and from 7 to 9 p. m. at the Holmes residence in Mossville,
Family links: 
  John C. Holmes (1824 - 1908)
  Lydia Ann Chambers Holmes (1835 - 1897)
  Nellie Maude Frye Holmes (1866 - 1960)
  Maurice Frye Holmes (1888 - 1988)*
  Charles Wilbur Holmes (1892 - 1963)*
  John Smith Holmes (1894 - 1957)*
  Josephine Hortense Holmes Johnson (1853 - 1919)*
  Thomas Bruce Holmes (1856 - 1931)*
  Nancy Jeanette Holmes Williams (1858 - 1938)*
  George Holmes (1859 - 1929)*
  John C Holmes (1862 - 1940)*
  Zealy Moss Holmes (1866 - 1947)
  Charles N. Holmes (1870 - 1952)*
  Walter S. Holmes (1872 - 1940)*
  Lydia Ann Holmes Nelson (1878 - 1908)*
*Calculated relationship
Note: Buried Mar 7, 1947
Mount Hawley Cemetery
Peoria County
Illinois, USA
Maintained by: One Foot In The Grave
Originally Created by: John Melton
Record added: Oct 13, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 22160213
Zealy Moss Holmes
Added by: ET
Zealy Moss Holmes
Added by: PerseidsGirl
Zealy Moss Holmes
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Steve Slaughter
Photos may be scaled.
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Rest in peace, Zealy.
- Renata
 Added: Aug. 3, 2012

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