Was born in the state of Massachusetts in the year 1812, and emigrated to Pike county, Illinois, in 1836. He was a house carpenter and joiner, and followed that business for many years, and was considered one of the best mechanics in the country. He was one of the boss mechanics who built a fine church in Alton, Illinois, in 1836. He also superintended the building of the Rockport Mills, now owned by Shaw & Rupont, and many other fine churches and buildings in this country. In 1838 Mr. Shaw was married to Miss Elizabeth Collins. She was born in 1815, and was the first white child born in the Wood River settlement in Madison county, Illinois.
Her parents removed to Pike county, Illinois, in 1826. For the last four years, on account of poor health, Mr. Shaw has had to abandon his mechanical pursuits, and has given his entire attention to the superintendency of his several large farms and his immense fruit crops. Mr. Shaw has had born to him eight children, six sons and two daughters, of whom five are yet living - two married and three at home single. In 1862 his two sons, Lyman I. and Henry T., volunteered their services to their country and joined the 8th and 99th regiments Illinois infantry. His son Lyman I. died in hospital in New Orleans of chronic diarrhea, at the age of twenty-one years.
His son Henry T. served his full time, was honorably discharged, and returned home in 1865. Mr. Shaw has frequently held office in his township, and has always discharged the duties to the entire satisfaction of his constituents.