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Page content last modified: August 26, 2008, added 1894 biography, further documentation on his military service, link to marriage license, notes of Fannie's birth.
November 4, 2007, added 1890 news item.
July 29, 2006, added Fannie's obituary and related news item.
July 30, 2005, added link to Henry Mull & Mary J. Campbell, dates of death for Silas and Fannie, 1920 and 1930 census transcriptions.

FOUNTAIN   GREEN
FAMILIES         NEWS         MEMORABILIA

 

 SILAS WRIGHT PRENTISS 1842-1927  
SARAH FRANCES MULL 1847-1940

 

From the 1894 Portrait and Biographical Record of
Hancock, McDonough, and Henderson Counties, Illinois
, pp. 379-380

SILAS W. PRENTISS is engaged in general farming and stock-raising in Hancock County, his home being located on section 33, Fountain Green Township.  Here he owns and operates one hundred and fifty-two acres of arable and valuable land, the greater part of which is now under a high state of cultivation.  There are good buildings upon the place, and the neat and thrifty appearance of the farms indicates the careful supervision of the owner.  In connection with the raising grains adapted to this climate, Mr. Prentiss is also engaged in the breeding of fine trotting horses.

Our subject is a native of the community in which he still makes his home, his birth having occurred on section 35, Fountain Green Township, September 21, 1842.  His father, Daniel Prentiss, was a native of Vermont, and by occupation he was a farmer and railroad contractor.  In early life he followed those pursuits, but after his removal to Canton, N. Y., he engaged in the lumber business, and also did business as a contractor.  In 1834 he left the Empire State, and, emigrating westward to Illinois, cast in his lot with the pioneer settlers of Hancock County.  He first made his home in Carthage, where he was engaged in railroad building, but subsequently removed to Warsaw, where he did business as a contractor.  In 1840 he purchased two hundred acres of land in Fountain Green Township, and was there engaged in farming until 1848, when he again went to Carthage.  During the succeeding four years of his life, he occupied the position of Superintendent of the County Poor Farm.  From 1852 until 1866, he carried on agricultural pursuits upon his own farm, and then took up his residence upon the farm which is now the home of our subject.  Here he spent his remaining days.  His death occurred December 29, 1882, and his remains were interred in Fountain Green Cemetery.  He was a member of the Masonic fraternity, and a prominent and influential citizen, whose loss was deeply mourned throughout the community.

After coming to the west, Mr. Prentiss was united in marriage with Miss Nancy Hughes.  She survived her husband for about ten years, and passed away at the age of seventy-four years.  Her death occurred October 17, 1892, and she was laid to rest in Fountain Green Cemetery.  Mr. and Mrs. Prentiss were the parents of five children.  George W., the eldest, died November 24, 1886. He enlisted in the Second Illinois Cavalry during the late war, and served throughout the struggle, during which time he was promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant.  Laura is the wife of E. E. B. Sawyer, who is engaged in the insurance business at Camp Point.  Fannie, twin sister of Laura, is now the wife of A. S. McCanlass [sic], a jewelryman of Moberly, Mo.  William R. died in December, 1885.

Silas W. Prentiss, whose name head this record, has always been a resident of Hancock County. He grew to manhood under the parental roof, and was still at home at the time of his enlistment for service in the late war.  Prompted by patriotic impulses, on the 7th of October, 1861, he became a private of Company D. Sixty-fourth Illinois Infantry, for a term of three years.  He was mustered into service at Camp Butler, and at once went to the South, but in May, 1862, he was mustered out on account of physical disability.  He then returned to his home, but on the 4th of March, 1865, he re-enlisted, becoming a member of Company D, Eighteenth Regiment of Illinois Volunteers.  He was sent to Little Rock, Ark., where he spent most of the summer, after which he was again discharged on account of disability.

On the 22d of November, 1870, Mr. Prentiss was united in marriage with Miss Fannie Mull. They have a pleasant home in Fountain Green Township, and are surrounded with all the comforts of life, Mr. Prentiss having gained a handsome competence as the result of his enterprise and well-directed efforts.  In politics, he has always been a stalwart supporter of the Republican party and its principles, and keeps himself well informed on all the issues of the day, but has never sought or desired political preferment.  He is interested in everything pertaining to the welfare of the community, and all worthy public enterprises receive his support.  Mr. Prentiss has spent his entire life in Hancock county, and those who have known him from boyhood are numbered among his warmest friends, a fact which indicates an honorable career.


From the 1921 Scofield History of Hancock County, page 1327;
[bracketed text] and paragraph breaks added for clarity and readability.

Prentiss, Silas Wright, one of the alert and successful realty dealers of Carthage, has made a study of salesmanship in his line, and is handling farm and city property upon an extensive scale.  He was born on a farm, section 35, Fountain Green Township, September 21, 1842, a son of Daniel and Nancy (Hughes) Prentiss, he born at Weatherfield, Vt., in 1799, and she born in Clark County, Ind., in 1818.

In 1832 Daniel Prentiss came to Hancock County, settling in Fountain Green Township, and Nancy Hughes was brought to Camp Point, Adams County, by her parents about 1830.  After their marriage, on June 24, 1840, Mr. Prentiss and wife settled on their farm in Fountain Green Township, where at one time they owned 200 acres of land.  He died in 1882.  In 1852 Daniel Prentiss was made superintendent of the county poor farm and continued as such until 1856.

Their children were as follows: George; Silas Wright; Laura, who is Mrs. E. E. B. Sawyer of Camp Point, Ill.; Fannie, twin of Laura, who is Mrs. Alexander McCandlas [McCandless], of Moberly, Mo.; and William, who is deceased.

Mr. Prentiss' father [Daniel], about 1839, took a contract on what is now the Wabash Railroad to build a railroad roadbed.  He then bought a steamboat of Joseph Smith, loaded this boat with pork, took this down the river to New Orleans.  Finding no sale there for pork, he dumped the cargo into the river there, then came back.  During this time he lived in Carthage.

Silas Wright Prentiss attended the common schools of his native township, and resided with his parents until in 1852 when his father was made superintendent of the Hancock County poor farm, a position he held for four years, his son assisting.  In November, 1861, Silas W. Prentiss enlisted for service during the Civil War in the Yates Sharpshooters which, in 1862, became Company D, Sixty-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and was in the Army of the Mississippi, but was discharged, in October, 1862, on account of disability incurred at Hamburg, Tenn.  Returning home, he recuperated, and on March 4, 1864, re-enlisted in Company D, Eighteenth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and was sent to Little Rock, Ark., and spent many months drilling recruits.  During the summer of 1865, however, he was for sixty-three days in the general hospital at Little Rock, Ark. He received his honorable discharge from the army in October, 1865, returning then to Fountain Green Township.

On November 22, 1870, Mr. Prentiss was married to Fannie Mull, born at Hobart, Delaware County, N. Y., a daughter of Henry and Mary (Campbell) Mull, natives of New York.  They came to Fountain Green, Ill., where Mr. Mull worked at his trade of wagonmaking.  He died April 15,1883, his wife having died November 20, 1867.  There were the following children in the Mull family: Mrs. Prentiss; Elizabeth, who is Mrs. David Fortney, of Galesburg, Ill.; Antoinette, who is Mrs. Alexander Walker of Rock Island, Ill; William, who lives at Monmouth, Ill.; Gussie, who is the widow of J. B. Yetter, lives at Galesburg, Ill.  Mr. and Mrs. Prentiss have no children.

After his marriage, Mr. Prentiss farmed on his father's farm for some years, and then bought a farm in Fountain Green Township, conducting it until 1900, when he moved to Carthage, and since then has been in a real estate business, buying and selling Hancock County Farms and city property. Mrs. Prentiss attended Monmouth College, and for a few years prior to her marriage, was one of the popular and efficient educators of Fountain Green and LaCrosse, Ill.  Mr. and Mrs. Prentiss are consistent members of the Presbyterian Church, and she belongs to the Church Circle and the Missionary Society.  In politics they are Republicans.  Not only is Mr. Prentiss a member of the local post of the G. A. R., but he has held all of its offices, including that of commander, holding the latter several terms.  His family has an honorable military record.  His grandfather and two of his brothers were in the Revolutionary War.


From the Muster and Descriptive Rolls compiled by the Illinois Adjutant General's Office:

Name   PRENTIS, SILAS
Rank   PVT   Company D  Unit  64 IL US INF

Personal Characteristics
Residence   [no entry]
Age 19   Height 5' 6"   Hair DARK   Eyes BLUE   Complexion LIGHT
Marital Status   SINGLE   Occupation   FARMER   Nativity   HANCOCK CO, IL

Service Record
Joined When   N/A   Joined Where   N/A
Joined By Whom   JOHN W STEWART   Period   3 YRS
Muster In   DEC 16, 1861   Muster In Where   CAMP BUTLER, IL
Muster In By Whom   N/A   Muster Out   N/A
Muster Out Where   N/A   Muster Out By Whom   N/A
Remarks   DISCHARGED FOR DISABILITY MAY 3, 1862

 

Name   PRENTISS, SILAS W
Rank   PVT   Company E  Unit  18 IL US INF CON

Personal Characteristics
Residence   FOUNTAIN GROVE, HANCOCK CO, IL
Age 22   Height 5' 4 1/2"   Hair AUBURN   Eyes BLUE   Complexion LIGHT
Marital Status   N/A   Occupation   FARM   Nativity   HANCOCK CO, IL

Service Record
Joined When   MAR 4, 1865   Joined Where   QUINCY, IL
Joined By Whom   CPT ASBURY   Period   1 YR
Muster In   MAR 4, 1865   Muster In Where   QUINCY, IL
Muster In By Whom   N/A   Muster Out   OCT 19, 1865
Muster Out Where   SPRINGFIELD, IL   Muster Out By Whom   CPT HUNTINGT [sic]
Remarks   N/A


An image of the pension card.Silas began spelling his surname Prentiss, while his father used Prentis.

At right, an image of the pension card indicating that Silas applied for a disability pension.  The date is hard to read, possibly 1880.  On May 3, 1927, Sarah applied for a widow's pension. Both were awarded.

Silas died May 2, 1927, at Carthage, Hancock County.  He was probably buried at Moss Ridge Cemetery, Carthage.


The Gazette
Carthage, Illinois
December 20, 1940

An image of the heading of a published obituary for Sarah Prentiss. It reads 'Mrs. S. W. Printiss Dies at Galesburg'

Mrs. S. W. Prentiss died in Galesburg, Tuesday, December 17th, aged 92 years.

Fanny Mull was born in Fountain Green Township.  She became the wife of S. W. Prentiss and they lived in Fountain Green, moving later to Carthage, where Mr. Prentiss died.  Since his death Mrs. Prentiss has lived in Galesburg.

The body was brought to Carthage to the Ostrich [sic] funeral home where the funeral was held Thursday afternoon, with interment in Moss Ridge, the Rev. Owen W. Wilson officiating.

Her niece, Mrs. Bertha Stimpson Peterson, of Los Angeles accompanied the body to Carthage.

Old friends here were grieved to learn last week that Mrs. Wright Prentiss had passed away at her home in Galesburg at the advanced age of 93 years.  Mrs. Prentiss, who was formerly Miss Fannie Mull, was born and raised in this community, where she lived until she and Mr. Prentiss moved to Carthage quite a good many years ago.  She was a faithful and active member of the Presbyterian church here as long as she lived in this community and both she and Mr. Prentiss were held in the highest regard by all who knew them.  We extend sympathy to the one remaining sister, as well as the various nieces, nephews and cousins who mourn the passing of this dear one.


Delaware County, New York, birth records show that Sarah Frances Mull, daughter of Henry and Mary Mull, was born September 17, 1847, at Stamford.  Hobart, mentioned in the 1921 Scofield biography, is located on the Delaware river, four miles below Stamford Village.

Sarah was baptized on February 7, 1849, at the South Kortright Presbyterian Church.

See also: Marriage License
Daniel Prentis & Nancy Hughes
Henry Mull & Mary J. Campbell

1850 Illinois Census, Hancock County, page 336B
enumerated October 28, 1850, dwelling #940

Daniel Prentiss, 57, male, farmer, value of real estate 1000, born VT
Nancy, 32, female, born IN
George W, 9, male, born IL, attended school within the year
Silas W, 8, male, born IL, attended school within the year
Laura, 5, female, born IL, attended school within the year (twin)
Frances, 5, female, born IL, attended school within the year (twin)
William R, 1, male, born IL

 

1860 Illinois Census, Hancock County, Fountain Green Township, page 736
enumerated July 25, 1860, dwelling #3352

Daniel Prentice, 61, male, farmer, value of real estate 4000, value of personal estate 1500,
born VT
Nancy, 43, female, born IN
George, 19, male, farm laborer, born IL, attended school within the year
Silas, 18, male, farm laborer, born IL, attended school within the year
Laura, 15, female, born IL, attended school within the year
Frances, 15, female, born IL, attended school within the year
William, 11, male, born IL, attended school within the year

 

1870 Illinois Census, Hancock County, Fountain Green Township, page 119
enumerated June 1, 1870, dwelling #4

Prentiss, Daniel, 71, male, white, retired farmer, value of real estate 5000, value of personal estate 1000, born VT, male citizen of the U.S. aged 21 or more
Nancy, 48, female, white, keeping house, born IN
Georg W, 28, male, white, farm laborer, born IL, male citizen of the U.S. aged 21 or more
Silas W, 26, male, white, farmer, value of personal estate 1000, born IL, male citizen of the U.S. aged 21 or more
Laura, 23, female, white, school teacher, born IL
Fannie, 23, female, white, school teacher, born IL
Wright, James, 20, male, white, farm laborer, born TN
Robbins, David L, 21, male, white, farm laborer, born NY, male citizen of the U.S. aged 21 or more

1880 Illinois Census, Hancock County, Fountain Green Township, page 111C
enumerated June 4, 1880, dwelling #59
[immediately preceding the residence of his father]

Prentise, S W, white, male, 37, married, born IL, father born VT, mother born IN
Fannie, white, female, 35, wife, married, keeping house, born NY, both parents born NY
McClaughry, Elizabeth, white, female, 69, aunt, widow, boarding, born NY, father born Ireland, mother born NY
Williams, Sophia, white, female, 13, cousin, single, boarding, attended school within the year, born NY, parents born [not known)

The Quincy Daily Whig
July 30, 1890

LOCAL MISCELLANY

The following Hancock county horses have started to campaign county fairs in neighboring states and counties, and are first entered for the Kahoka, Mo., races, which are announced for July 29, 30, and 31: Dan, owned by G. C. Nelson, of Harpe, and Willie C., owned by H. F. Casey, of Elvaston, in the 2:40 trot; Birdie flaxtail, owned by Job Franks, of La Harpe, in the free-for-all pace; King Rattler, owned by S. W. Prentiss, of Fountain Green, in the 2-year-old trot....

1900 Illinois Census, Hancock Co., Carthage Twp., Carthage ED 15
page 62A, enumerated June 14, 1900, dwelling #322, South Main Street

Prentice, Silas W, head, white, male, [poorly written, perhaps Sept] 1842, 57, married for 29 years, born IL, father born VT, mother born IN, retired farmer, months not employed - 12, could read, write and speak English, owned his home free of mortgage

Fannie S, wife, white, female, Sept 1847, 52, married for 29 years, mother of 0 children, born NY, both parents born NY, could read, write and speak English

Stimpson, Bertha, niece, white, female, Mar 1881, 19, single, born IL, father born IL, mother born IL, could read, write and speak English

Hancock County Journal and Carthage Republican
Mar 4, 1954 - 50 YEARS AGO - March 3, 1904

S. W. Prentiss has sold his 132-acre farm near Fountain Green to John Sibert for $15,000.

1910 Illinois Census, Hancock Co., Carthage Twp., Carthage ED 5
page 260A, enumerated April 15, 1910, dwelling #6, 710 Main Street

Prentiss, Silas W, head, male, white, 67, married (1st) for 39 years, born IL, father born VT, mother born IN, spoke English, working on own account, could read and write, owned his home free of mortgage, whether a survivor of the Union or Confederate Army or Navy - UA

Sarah F, wife, female, white, 62, married (1st) for 39 years, born NY, both parents born NY, spoke English, could read and write

 

1920 Illinois Census, Hancock Co., Carthage Twp., Carthage ED 7, page 53A
enumerated January 14, 1920, dwelling #64, 149 Main Street

Prentiss, Silas W, head, owned his home free of mortgage, male, white, 77, married, could read and write, born IL, father born VT, mother born IN, spoke English

Fannie, wife, female, white, 72, married, could read and write, born NY, both parents born NY, spoke English

1930 Illinois Census, Knox County, Galesburg Township, page 93B
enumerated April 5, 1930, dwelling #46, family 90, 366 N. Cherry

Johnson, Ruth, head, renter, monthly rental - 40, owned a radio, female, white, 36, widow, age at first marriage - 26, could read and write, born IL, both parents born IL, spoke English, clerk, steam railroad

Yetter, Gussie, mother, female, white, 71, widow, age at first marriage - 20, could read and write, born IL, both parents born NY, spoke English

Prentiss, Fannie, lodger, female, white, 81, widow, age at first marriage - 23, could read and write, born NY, both parents born NY, spoke English

 

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