Robert Franklin Casey
A Long Life Ended Robert F. CASEY 
Called Illness of Few Weeks Claimed Victim Who Was Well 
Known Merchant and Citizen 

Robert Franklin CASEY, aged 72, answered the call of the death angel at his home 
in Kell at 12:15, Tuesday, Feb. 21. He was a native born Jefferson county citizen, his 
birthplace being in Grand Prairie township, in November, 1828. For many years he was 
actively engaged in mercantile pursuits in Dix, and later he became identified in business 
in Kell, which was under his ownership at the time of his death. 

Mr. CASEY was married June 14, 1860, to Mary Elizabeth MILBURN, at the old village 
of Rome, which is now Dix, the officiating clergyman being Rev. Thomas CASEY. Six children 
blessed the union, but three of the little ones died in infancy. Those reaching maturity were 
Mrs. Rose IRONS and Mrs. Lou BOGAN, who have gone on before; the surviving child is 
Mrs. Mary FROST, of this city. 

At the age of two years, Mr. CASEY was left fatherless. When 16 years old he started 
out on the rugged path of life to make his way in the world. He studied hard and made his 
efforts to gain knowledge reap benefits. He attended McKendree college one year and 
gained a good business education. He was a great reader and deep thinker. Mr. CASEY 
had long been a member of the Methodist Church, and when the M. E. church, South, was 
organized at Dix, united there and still held his membership with that society at the time of 
his death. In 1866 he was made a Master Mason in Mt. Vernon lodge No. 331, C. H. PATTON 
conferring the degree. When Rome lodge No. 721 was organized he became a charter 
member and was for many years worshipful master. He was made a Royal Arch Mason, 
Sept. 14, 1883. On May 14, 1884, he received the degree in Cyrene Commandry No. 
25(?) Knights Templar, at Centralia. Constituted and created a companion of the Illinois 
Order of the Red Cross, June 23 and dubbed Knight Templar. Was made a Knight of the 
Malta, Nov. 18, 184. He came as a charter member when PATTON commandery K. T. 
was organized here Nov. 30, 1905. He with Mrs. CASEY, received the degree Eastern 
Star at Salem Chapter No. 202, at Salem, Ill., some 10 or 12 years ago. the subject was 
one of the best known men in Jefferson county and was held in the highest regard by those 
with whom he had dealings, as he always won favor by his honesty. He was active in his 
church affiliations as well as in Masonic circles. 

Dearest to Mr. CASEY was his home, and then his church and Masonary. 
His good wife and daughter, Mrs. FROST were with him during his last sickness. 
The golden wedding anniversary was celebrated at the Kell home June 14, 1910, and 
a joy and happiness was created as Mr. and Mrs. CASEY were surrounded by many 
of their loved ones. 

The funeral will be held in the Christian church, in Kell, Thursday morning and the body 
will be brought here in the afternoon on the C & E I train and taken directly to the home 
of Dr. and Mrs. A. M. FROST, where it will lie in state until Fri. afternoon at 1:30, when 
Rome lodge No. 721, A. F. & A. M. will take charge and convey the remains to Oakwood cemetery. 
Commandery No 69 K T will act as an escort to the cemetery 
The Masonic burial services will be conducted by Rome lodge. 

February 21, 1911 Mt. Vernon Daily Register 


G. P. BALDRIDGE, of Centralia, and J. D. Baldridge, of Grand Prairie, are here 
to attend the funeral of their half brother, Robert F. CASEY. While here they will 
visit the family of R. L. LACEY. 

CASEY Family History 

The following brief bits of history of the family of the late Robert F. CASEY 
and his wife are quite interesting 

Robert F. CASEY was the son of Isaac Stewart and Tabitha White CASEY, and has 
one sister, Mrs. T. S. NOLEMAN, of Grand Prairie. Isaac S. CASEY was born in 
Tennessee in 1811, to Abraham and Nancy Baker CASEY, coming here with his parents 
in 1818; was a volunteer in the Black Hawk War and was a cororal under Franklin S. CASEY, 
first lieutenant stationed at KELLEGG'S Grove, and was one of the party decoyed from 
the fort early one morning when so many were killed. Later he assisted in the capture of 
the noted chief, Black Hawk. 
Abraham CASEY and wife were natives of South Carolina, 
moving to Tennesse, then to Illinois. He built the first house in Grand Prairie, was an older 
brother of Gov. CASEY and was nicknamed "Old Silver." His wife, Nancy, was a woman 
of strong character, a busy active woman, practicing as mid-wife until 80 years old, riding 
horseback all over the country. At one time she was attacked by wolves and had a narrow 
escape with her life. She was known far and wide as "Granny" CASEY. 
Tabitha White CASEY was the daughter of Robert and Sarah HOLT WHITE, 
and was born July 10, 1813, at Chambers Fort, a few miles north of Lebanon. 
She died April 1898. They also came from South Carolina and located in Madison county 
in the year of 1810. Mr. WHITE was a Methodist preacher, licensed by Bishop MCKENDREE, 
in the village of St. Louis. He was a great friend and co-worker of Peter CARTWRIGHT, preaching 
often to the friendly Indians. Mrs. CASEY is the daughter of the late Hiram and Mary A. MILBURN 
and was born in Princeton, Ind., Nov. 9, 1839. She is an older sister of Mrs. Rose MCWILLIAMS, 
of Chicago; Mrs. Everman FINLEY, Mrs. Elias MYERS, of Field township; T. N. MILBURN, 
Webb City, MO.; and W. A. MILBURN of this city. One brother, Robert, was a sergeant 
in the Civil War and was mustered out of service June 10, 1865, living only a short time after. 
His commission as lieutenant received by the family after his death. MILBURN Post, at Dix, 
was named for him. His grandfather, Robert MILBURN, was one of the company that erected 
the steam flouring mill, at Princeton, the first built in southern Indiana. He was an old soldier, 
having served with General HARRISON at the Battle of Tippecanoe. Many of the early MILBURNS 
were in the Revolutionary War, some serving as officers through the entire war, and one, 
Katherine STEWART, drilled the girls and women to use rifles to defend their homes. 
She was hated by the Indians, who burned her home, but she outwitted them and escaped 
and for her act of courage and daring was name "Witty Kitty of the Fort." Mary MCCOY 
MILBURN'S father came from Ireland, locating in Maryland. 

February 23, 1911 Mt. Vernon Register News 
Submitted by: Sharlet Bigham LaBarbera 
Sept 22, 1997  



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