Chester Molt Baum

Chester Molt Baum

Birth
Indianola, Vermilion County, Illinois, USA
Death 13 Oct 1970 (aged 81)
Danville, Vermilion County, Illinois, USA
Burial Indianola, Vermilion County, Illinois, USA
Memorial ID 31924539 · View Source
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Chester Molt Baum was born in Indianola, Carroll Township, Vermilion County, Illinois on August 15, 1889. He was the youngest child and only son of Win C. Baum and Frona Molt Baum. The Baum family were among the early white settlers of Vermilion County and were prominent farmers and cattle ranchers. The Molt family was from Wayne County, Illinois and were also known as prominent German pioneers and farmers.

Chet was raised on the family farm home that was constructed in 1826 by his grandfather, Samuel Baum. The rich German traditions and language were practiced and spoken by his parents until the beginning of the first World War when all things German were unpopular. C.M would recall the sadness of abandoning many of the traditions. He could still speak some German as an older man and would have tears in his eyes when he would tell the story. The prosperity of the family did not preclude hard farm work for Chester. He would become an expert horseman, successful farmer and well known cattleman. He owned a large cattle ranch in Lincoln County, Colorado, a beef packing plant in Danville, Illinois and fat cattle in Hoopeston, Illinois. He drove cattle from Colorado and Texas to St. Louis and shipped them to Chicago and Danville. It happened on one of those cattle drives that he was thrown from his horse resulting in a badly broken hip that left him partially crippled for the rest of his life. He forever after walked with a cane. His trademarks were his hand tooled leather boots and Stetson western style hat. I cannot remember him without them very often. Chester Baum's word was his bond and he was known for conducting most of his business by handshake. He accumulated a large fortune in his lifetime and enjoyed the affection of his dear wife, Nora and his children, Helen, Kathryn and Win. His son, Win, was killed on a horse when he was only 20 years of age. It was a tragedy that never really healed.

Chester Molt Baum wed Nora Helen Gibbs on Valentine's Day in 1909. The Baum family did not approve of the union so Chet and Nora eloped. They were secretly married in Champaign, Illinois and took a train to Chicago where Chester had secured a position with the Union Stockyards and board of trade. His father contacted him in Chicago and said that all was forgiven and asked for him to come back home with his bride. Chet negotiated the deal with the promise of 150 acres of farmland to be deeded to his name. He and Nora returned and lived happily on the farm until the 1940's when they moved in to Danville. They built a beautiful home at Swisher Avenue and would remain there for the rest of their lives. Winters were spent in Hillsboro Beach, Florida where they had a beach home. Nora and Chet celebrated their 50th Anniversary with dozens of family and friends in Florida in 1959.

The children, grandchildren and great grandchildren of Chester M. Baum adored him. He died on October 13, 1970. This was a good and gentle man.


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  • Created by: Robert Jones
  • Added: 3 Dec 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 31924539
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Chester Molt Baum (15 Aug 1889–13 Oct 1970), Find A Grave Memorial no. 31924539, citing Woodlawn Cemetery, Indianola, Vermilion County, Illinois, USA ; Maintained by Robert Jones (contributor 46993278) .