Jefferson County

Newspaper Articles

The Daily Register - Mt. Vernon, IL, April, 20, 1897

Wm. H. GREEN, as attorney for Mrs. Rebecca GALBRAITH, filed a bill 
in Chancery in the Circuit Court yesterday, asking to set aside the 
will of her aunt, Mrs. Rebecca McDOWELL, which will was executed 
August 28, 1893.  Mrs. McDOWELL died Mary 2, 1895.  The will was 
probated May 4, 1895, and in addition to appointing Albert WATSON 
executor, makes the following bequests:

FIRST, It is my will that my just debts, if any, be fully paid.

SECOND, I give, devise and bequeath to Sarah A. WILLIS, wife of 
John J. WILLIS, my wearing apparel, bed clothes, table linen and the sum of $400.

THIRD, I give, devise and bequeath to Carrie M. LAVERTY, wife of Wm. V. LAVERTY, 
of St. Louis, the sum of $400.

FOURTH, I give, devise and bequeath to Hannah M. DAVIS, of Troy, Miami County, 
Ohio, the sum of $200.

FIFTH, I give, devise and bequeath to James FOSTER, my tenant, the sum of $50.

SIXTH, I give, devise and bequeath to John RILEY, my former tenant, the sum of $200.
SEVENTH, I give, devise and bequeath to my niece, Rebecca GALBRAITH, the sum of $300, 
provided, that whereas, I believe the said Rebecca now claims that my personal estate, 
or some part thereof, consists of chattels and effects received by me from my deceased 
husband, James McDOWELL, and whereas such claim is false, the personal effects so received 
having been all expended many years ago in the support of myself the said Rebecca; now, 
therefore it is my will that if after my death the said Rebecca GALBRAITH shall assert 
or attempt to assert any such claim as that mentioned above or any claim for services 
alleged to have been rendered to me or for my benefit, or shall attempt to establish a 
right or interest in or to any part of the money or property now owned or controlled by 
me, then, in such event, she shall forfeit all claim to the above mentioned bequest of $300, 
and received out of my estate the sum of $25, and no more.

EIGHTH, I direct that my executor shall sell my household goods and divide the proceeds 
equally between Sarah A. WILLIS, John RILEY, James FOSTER, Carrie M. LAVERTY and 
Hannah M. DAVIS.

NINTH, The rest, residue and remainder of my estate I give, devise and bequeath unto 
the said Hannah M. DAVIS, Carrie M. LAVERTY, James FOSTER, John RILEY and Sarah A. WILLIS 
in equal shares, to each of which persons I feel that I owe a debt of gratitude, although 
I do not owe either of them any money; and each of them is to accept the bequests herein 
made to him or her in lieu of any charge or claim against my estate.

Mrs. GALBRAITH assigns for cause why the will should be set aside, that Mrs. McDOWELL 
was, at the time of executing said will, not of sound mind and memory, but, on the contrary, 
was in her dotage, and her mind and memory were impaired by disease so as to render her 
incapable of making any just and proper distribution of her estate.

She further represents that the defendant, Sarah A. WILLIS, one of the legatees in said 
pretended will, knowing that the said Rebecca R. McDOWELL, had recently before that time 
executed and published her will, leaving to Mrs. GALBRAITH, her only living relative, all 
of her estate, save a small bequest to John RILEY, Hannah M. DAVIS, and $500 to Carrie M. 
LAVERTY, used many undue and improper arts and fraudulent practices and resorted to falsehoods 
and improper statements and misrepresentations to induce the said Rebecca R. McDOWELL was, 
in fact, under improper restraint and influence.

The legatees, who are made defendants to this suit, are all summoned to answer, but not 
under oat, at the May term of the Circuit Court.

Mt. Vernon IL Register (Weekly) - July 7, 1897 The Old Settlers - From an interview with Judge J. M. PACE, secretary of the Jefferson County Old Settlers Association, the REGISTER reporter this morning gleaned the following interesting data in relation to the history of that organization, which we publish for the benefit of our readers. The Association was formed June 7, 1872 on the fifty-third anniversary of the organization of Jefferson County, which took place in 1819 or the year following the admission of Illinois as one of the States of the Union. At first the Association only admitted those to membership who had lived in the county for half a century, but at its second annual meeting this privilege was extended to those who had resided here for forty years. The almost prohibitive rule of the first year circumscribed the membership to a very narrow circle, as but few people were to be found who had lived in the county since 1822, which was a necessary qualification before one could enter the Association. With the restriction of the time to two score years, however, the membership grew rapidly and the organization was soon upon a sound and substantial basis. To perpetuate the Association by the admission of Younger blood, two new classes have been formed and now anybody who has lived in the county continuously for thirty, or even twenty years, is eligible to one or the other of these grades of membership. Of the officers of the Association at the time of its organization, all are now dead except Judge J. M. PACE, who has acted as its secretary and historian for twenty-five years. Jehu G. D. MAXEY was the first president, who was succeeded in office by Thomas H. HOBBS who died in April of the current year. At the election held at the annual meeting of the association at the fairgrounds last Saturday, Vice President, John R. MOSS was promoted to the vacancy caused by the death of Mr. HOBBS and S. T. MAXEY elected to the vice-presidency. The officers do not hold their positions for any specified period, but continue in office until they resign or are relieved from further service by the hand of Death. At least two sets of officers have passed away during the last quarter of a century except Judge J. M. PACE and Clinton M. CASEY. Jehu G. D. MAXEY, the first president of the association, died in Texas January 19, 1891 and was brought here for interment in the family burial ground at Pleasant Grove Cemetery. Of the fifty-seven members admitted to the ranks of the Association on the 7th of June 1872, only eleven are now living viz: Isaac HICKS, Joshua C. MAXEY, Lewis JOHNSON, Celia P. HICKS, Elizabeth P. SATTERFIELD, Joel F. WATSON, Clinton M. CASEY, Robert HARLOW, J. M. PACE, James KELL and Joseph BALDRIDGE. Of a much larger number who registered on the secretary's books the following year under the rule making a residence of only forty years necessary for membership, eleven also are yet living: William F. JOHNSON, Mary A. MAXEY, Harriet LEONARD, Polly J. OWENS, Mary E. FLY, John W. BAUGH, James D. PACE, Henderson HARLOW, James P. SURSA, John R. MOSS and Lizzie M. GALBRAITH. The death roll among the members of the Association has been much greater this year than ever before and indicates as nothing else does that the pioneers that settled the county and by their thrift and industry made it blossom as the rose that are rapidly going to that bourne from whence no traveler returns. The secretary's books show the following deaths during the past twelve months: Robert A. GRANT, Henry H. DIRDEN, Rachel C. SEIVERS, Susan WHISTENHUNT, Henry WHISTENHUNT, Florence KNOWLES, Robert H. LOUTH, James LOWMAN, Baley P. REECE, Frances M. SURSA, Dolly N. SURSA, Matthew T. ROUGH, Naomi DEES, Frederic DACHWALD, Joseph C. QUINN, Harriet E. PAYNE, Henry WILLIAMS, James WELLS, John BUSHONG, John R. P. HICKS, Elizabeth HARLOW, Wiley PATTERSON, Dollie McMINN, Rebecca C. GOWLER, Mary E. RUSSELL, W. A. MIFFLIN, Jesse A. DEES, John DOWNER, Barbara YEARWOOD, Alfred MORGAN, Harriet JUDD, Luella BAUGH, Hiram M. McNEW, Elizabeth J. BEARDEN, Dr. H(enry) J(ackson) PEAVLER, Sarah A. WOODWARD, Hugh HUTCHISON, Mary E. DRENNAN, Eliza DODSON, Hearty L. DOWNER, Margaret LIEBENGOOD, Rachel E. TAYLOR, George W. GREEN, Thomas H. HOBBS, Ann Eliza WILLIS, Rachel H. WILSON, William SLY, George W. BERGER, Alexander MOORE, William D. CRAWFORD, George W. BLAIR, Hezekiah B. NEWBY.
The Daily Register - Mt. Vernon, IL - Tuesday, November 9, 1897 Excerpt taken from a letter written by DeWitt ANDERSON from Salisaw, I.T., November 8, 1897........... Sunday, I made a trip over into the Choctaw Nation. Here I found James W. BOWMAN, an old Jefferson County boy, one of the very bad boys of ex-Sheriff BOWMAN, of Jefferson County, mentioned in Adam Clark JOHNSON's history. Jim, after the war drifted into Arkansas, lost his wife, and married a squaw in the nation. Jim claims she is only half Indian, the other half high tone French, and probably a descendant of Napoleon BONAPARTE. Respectfully, D. W. ANDERSON.


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