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WILLIAM MORRISON


Was born in Windsor, New Hampshire, August 1, 1799. His father, David Morrison, served in the Continental army during the war of Independence, being engaged in several of the hardest fought battles. He served for nearly the whole war. After independence was acknowledged he laid aside the habiliments of the soldier and returned to his home. He soon after was married to a Miss Ditson, and by her had two children. Soon after the birth of the second child Mrs. Morrison died. He was subsequently married to Miss Margaret, daughter of Alex McClintick. They were of Irish descent. They had born to them a family of five children, of whom the subject of this sketch is the third. Mr. Morrison's vocation was always that of a farmer. He died at his residence in Windsor, New Hampshire, in the year 1803. His wife survived the death of her husband until 1852.

The subject of this sketch received his early education in the common schools of his native state. Being blessed with a retentive memory, he had little difficulty in mastering the rudiments of a solid English education. After leaving school he turned his attention to agricultural pursuits. At the age of twenty-eight he was married to Miss Roxana, daughter of James and Margaret Wilson. Mr. Wilson and family were of Irish descent. Mrs. Morrison was born at Hillsborough, New Hampshire, in 1800. Her grandfather, James Wilson, sr., served as a soldier in the revolutionary war, participating in the ever memorable battle of Bunker Hill, and others, serving with distinction and honor for the flag of his adoption. Mr. and Mrs. Morrison have had born to them a family of seven children, only three of whom are now living. Ten years after his marriage Mr. Morrison removed to Illinois, locating in Fairmount township, Pike county, in the year 1838, on what is known as South Prairie, which is one of the most fertile and productive belts of prairie in Pike county. Five of Mr. Morrison's children were born in New Hampshire; the others are natives of Illinois. Mr. Morrison was among the first settlers of the northern portion of the county, and is so mentioned in the history of Fairmount township. At that time the country was in its primitive state. The last echo of the wild Indian, and the burning embers of his camp-fire, had but recently died out. The hardships and privations of a pioneer life to him seemed but pleasures. To see a herd of wild deer grazing on the prairie was almost an every day occurrence. Wolves at that time were very plenty also, and many an unwary settler has lost his flock of sheep in a single night by those rapacious animals.

On the organization of Pike county into townships, Mr. Morrison was unanimously elected the first supervisor from Fairmount. He says he is a democrat, and always expects to be one as long as he shall live, believing that the principles as promulgated by that party are the principles calculated to preserve the purity of our political institutions and to work out the manifest destiny of this great American nation. Mr. Morrison was quite well acquainted with Stephen A. Douglas as a politician. He has always exercised considerable influence in the ranks of his party, holding several local offices, and is now honored by his neighbors with the office of supervisor from Fairmount. He is now in his seventy-third year, and is the oldest member of the county court in Pike county. Mr. Morrison, by dint of a steady perseverence, united with honest and integrity, has succeeded in accumulating a competence, and is supplied with sufficient wealth to make his sojourn on earth both pleasant and agreeable. Mrs. Morrison is in quite feeble health, but her faculties remain unimpaired and as brilliant as when in youth. Mr. Morrison is hale and hearty, and is enjoying excellent health. He says he can walk a half dozen miles with the quickness and elasticity of boyhood. He is now residing on his farm in Fairmount, which is under a good state of cultivation.