Lee County Illinois
Part of American History and Genealogy Project

Amboy Township, Lee County Illinois

This claimed for a Frenchman named Filamalee, that he was the first settler of Amboy Township and that he lived in Palestine Grove about a mile south of Rocky Ford. It has been said that in a burr oak stump, he placed mortar and therein he pounded grain into meal and flour for bread. He left the country as soon as settlers began reaching the country, and John Dexter in 1835 became the first settler. He came here from Canada and made his claim on the northwest quarter of section 13. The cabin which he built immediately was twelve feet square. In the spring of 1836, Mr. and Mrs. James Doan came into what now is the township of Amboy. With them came John Doan the father and Jemima sister of James. In the spring of 1837, Andrew Bainter, brother-in-law to James Doan came in and took a claim on the Sublette road. In October, 1837, Asa B. Searls came up the Peoria road with a team of horses, bringing with him Benjamin Wasson, from Peoria. Both were New York people. Searls located on south half of section 14 and Wasson on sections 14 and 15. Later Searls laid out Binghampton, a mile east of the present city of Amboy. Nathan Meek settled near Rocky Ford about 1837. Rocky Ford was so named from the ford over Green River to the southwest of Amboy where Frederick R. Dutcher afterwards established a store, a mill and a distillery and where for a time a village of respectable proportions flourished. Meek was not reputed to be a desirable citizen during the days of the banditti. Three miles downstream he built his corn cracker mill and ground com. He tried to make flour, but failed. A sawmill had been built in this township much earlier than in other sections of the county. When Mr. Searls first came here Timothy Perkins and Horace Bowen operated one at Rocky Ford, but later in the year, it was transferred to a man named Lee. After a brief career, Lee sold to Mason. The latter died and John Von Arnam (or Van Norman) secured it. In 1848, Frederick R. Butcher purchased it.

In 1837, James Blair, and his sons, William, Winthrop and Edwin came here, and settled on section 29. The same year, John S. Sawyer and his four sons erected a cabin south of the Illinois Central shops. In 1841, Sawyer sold part of his claim to Joseph Farwell and the remainder to Joseph Appleton. Alexander Janes came in about 1837, but in a year or so sold his claim to Chester S. Badger, and moved to Bureau County. In 1838, Mr. Badger and his son, Simon, settled in this township, and in 1839 Warren, an-other son, came out with the mother and her two daughters, Sarah and Rowena (or Roena). But Warren returned and remained in the East until 1842 only, when he came back to Illinois and settled permanently here. Henry Badger came in 1849. In the sum-mer of 1838, John C. Church, Curtis Bridgeman, the latter's sons, Curtis and Urial, and William Hunt arrived. In 1841, Jacob Doan came out from Ohio and bought the claim made by Mr. Church, one mile south of Amboy. Martin Wright also came in 1838, from Massachusetts. John Fosdick, the Lee Center or Inlet blacksmith moved his smithy over to Doan's place and that become the first in the township. Later Fosdick returned to Lee Center, and Doan and Frederick Bainter became proprietors and continued the business. Doan invented a scouring plow and many were made by the firm.

In 1839, Cyrus Davis and his son, Cyrus A. Davis, came here from Massachusetts and claimed a home on the southeast quarter of section 15, later Wyman's addition to Amboy. John and William Hook, brothers, located at Rocky Ford in 1840. Aaron Hook came two years before. The Joseph Farwell claim on the northeast quarter of section 22 subsequently was platted into the original town of Amboy. Jesse Hale came in 1841, and Samuel and Lyman Bixby came here in 1844. Among others who came to the neighborhood about this time, were, Joseph Appleton (41 or 42); Josiah Davis; Francis H. Northway (1844); Orris Adams and family; David Searls, Alvan H. Thompson; Hiel Lewis (1842); Miles and Joseph Lewis (1845); Seth W. Holmes (1846); Elijah and Warren Hill; Henry C. Shaw, and John M. Blocker (1849).

The first public land sales were held at the Dixon Land Office in the autumn of 1844. Prior to this time of course, every person was a squatter. But as noticed already, every community had its code under which lines were regulated; settlers were protected in the peaceable enjoyment of their claims and in the right to buy the same from the Government when offered for sale, unhampered by speculators. The Amboy association about 1837, centered around Inlet, of which Amboy was a part at that time. Later, the settlers around Palestine Grove organized and held meetings at the homes of Sherman Hatch and William Dolan. In 1847, all need for this latter association having vanished it was discontinued. While individual associations existed everywhere, they all were confederated together for any emergencies which may have arisen.

On the 16th of March, 1839, George E. Haskell was chosen president of the claim association for Inlet and Martin Wright, clerk. The committee elected consisted of Ransom Barnes, D. H. Birdsall, Ozro C. Wright, Daniel M. Dewey and Benjamin Whiteaker. March 20, 1841, Haskell and Wright were reelected, and D. H. Birdsall, David Tripp, Daniel M. Dewey, Charles Starks and Sherman Shaw were made the committee.

In the spring of 1850, April 2d, the first annual town meeting was held in Amboy, Joseph Farwell acted as moderator and Joseph B. Appleton as clerk. Miles Lewis suggested that the new township be named Amboy and the name was adopted. David Searls was made supervisor; J. B. Appleton, town clerk; Martin Wright, assessor and A. H. Thompson, collector.

The old road from Peru to Grand Detour, mentioned already was the first to run through Amboy Township. The second ran from Inlet to Prophetstown, taking in Binghamton, and Rocky Ford. Main Street today is that very road and the old cotton-woods along the edges to mark its course, were planted by Joseph Farwell.

In 1855, the Illinois Central railroad was finished through Amboy to Freeport, and on February 1, it was thrown open for traffic. The first train to reach Amboy was in November, 1854.

During the session 1868-9 of the Illinois Legislature, Alonzo Kinyon of Amboy was a member of the lower House. During this session, he procured a charter for the Chicago & Rock River Railroad Company to nm from Rock Falls to Calumet. In 1869, Kinyon was elected president and on July 26, 1869, Amboy voted by 517 for, to 92 against, to issue township bonds in aid of the road to the extent of $100,000. January 4, 1872, the road between Rock Falls and Amboy was finished and June 19 it was finished to Paw Paw. Under Kinyon, shops and all manner of good things for Amboy were promised, but when the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railway Company obtained possession of the road, and connected it with the Chicago & Iowa road at Shabbona, Amboy was doomed. The bonds were fought bitterly for years. All sorts of subterfuges were resorted to in the efforts made to escape service of process; but to no purpose. Their payment had to come sometime. A settlement was made at last, and not very long ago the last dollar was paid off. Many times the burden became intolerable but with a sublime courage the citizens stuck to it until every cent was paid.

Amboy always has been fortunate with her school system. The same intelligence which pervaded Inlet, while Amboy was a part of that precinct, has pervaded Amboy; teachers and ministers and physicians, all men of rare intelligence, came early to Amboy and they saw to it that the Amboy schools were built on substantial foundations and presided over by good teachers.

Lucy Ann Church was the first teacher to teach in this township. The schoolhouse, built of logs, was located on the Sublette road just south of the railroad crossing. Leonard Pratt, John Carey, Ira Hale, David Hale and Charlotte Doan followed Miss Church. The second school in the township was the famous Wasson School, a frame building erected over towards Lee Center, in 1845. In this school Misses Rowena (or Roena) Badger and Roxy Wasson taught for a long while. John Scott, an able teacher, H. E. Badger and Lyman C. Wheat also taught there.

Later, the first school was moved further south and located hear the Lewis place.

Private schools never were attempted to any great extent. At Rocky Ford, a few irregular terms were ventured, but in the face of failure, they were not continued.

Church services were furnished first by Father Gorbus, a Methodist, who came over from the Indian Creek country.

The next minister to appear so far as known was a German Baptist named Father Hetchler. Rev. Curtis Lathrop came along third. He was a Methodist. Father White, a Methodist was next to appear.

In 1843, the Rev. Donaldson, assisted in organizing a Congregational society, said to be the first in the county. This was done at the house of Moses Crombie, and the name adapted was "The Congregational Church of Palestine Grove.'' Services were held for many years in the Wasson schoolhouse. Rev. John Morrel was the first regular pastor. He in turn was followed by Rev. Ingersoll, father of Robert G. Ingersoll. Revs. Joseph Gardner and a Mr. Pierson followed Ingersoll. Later this church moved to Lee Center. Many stories are related of Rev. Ingersoll especially by Rev. Haney, the Methodist circuit rider. From all, we can learn the gentleman was rather opinionated and considerably belligerent.

The Palestine Grove Baptist Church was another early church. In 1847, Rev. Charles Cross became its pastor.

The Mormon Church attempted to secure a foothold in this township and what is more, it was actually secured. The first preacher, William Anderson, held his services in John Hook's house. Both Joseph and Hyrum Smith came up here often from Nauvoo. Joseph, the prophet, married a Miss Emma Hale, sister to Alva Hale of Sublette, and David Hale and Mrs. Benjamin Wasson of Amboy. Asa Searls was a boyhood acquaintance of Smith, and had been a schoolmate. Smith visited his friends and relatives here often. He made it a point always to preach when here, using the log schoolhouse on the Sublette road. When in the famous litigation of June, 1843, the Governor of Missouri, sent a requisition over into Illinois for Smith's arrest, the latter was visiting those relatives and friends in Palestine Grove. An Illinois constable and the Missouri agent came up here and arrested him. Smith fought desperately, but after receiving many bruises, he was overpowered.

The crowd believed the proceedings were entirely illegal and many followed Smith and his captors to Dixon. It was agreed, however, that Smith was to return to Nauvoo. But upon the discovery of the Missouri agent's design to take the prisoner over to Missouri direct, a party of Mormons collected and rescued the prophet. Immediately he was brought triumphantly into Nauvoo. A writ of habeas corpus was issued and Smith was released by Judge Stephen A. Douglas.

Aaron Hook who had gone to Nauvoo and who had been ordained an elder, returned now, to Rocky Ford. William Smith, another brother of the prophet came over to Lee County from Nauvoo about this time and a very considerable Mormon following was obtained in Lee County.

Among the number were the Hooks, Edwin Cadwell, Wentworth Blair, Stephen Stone and David L. Doan.

It was a deplorable circumstance; however, that none of the Smiths could get along with his neighbors. This William Smith was no exception. He was arrested here for bigamy, released and then he left the country.

In 1860, April 6th, the anniversary of the founding of the church, the annual conference was held in Amboy. Joseph Smith, Jr., was installed prophet and high priest in the old Mechanics Hall, where the meeting was held.

Amboy Township was peopled early by enterprising people. So soon as the settlers got their bearings, they proceeded at once to build their homes and schools and churches and then to establish villages for trading and manufacturing purposes.

Binghamton was laid out by Asa B. Searls and named in honor of Binghamton, New York. Its location was on the southeast quarter of section 14. The date was April, 1848. Warren Badger laid off some lots contiguous. Here Mr. Searls opened and maintained the Binghamton House. He erected a store as well and took into partnership Edward Waters. Later Henry Potter bought the store and he in turn sold it to the Union Company, a cooperative company, conducted by James H. Preston. Robert G. Ingersoll was Mr. Searls' "hired man," for a considerable period.

Binghamton became a flouring mill center, John Dexter in 1844 built one on Green River and the Badger brothers, Warren and Palmer, built another. The latter was killed by a bank of earth falling on him and Chester Badger took his place in the partnership. In 1858, Chester and Henry Badger took over the property and introduced steam power instead of water power. On Thursday night, July 18, 1872, the mill was burned and a loss of $6,000 was sustained. The mill was rebuilt and H. E. Badger and son took it over and operated it until the evening of July 21, 1881, when it was struck by lightning and burned. Loss $16,000; insurance $6,000.

John Doan started a plow factory which he ran for a year and then sold it to Frederick Bainter. In 1846 another was started by the Shaws and Churches. One of the factories, a quaint little limestone building testifies to the business thrift of Binghamton, to this very day.

There were two blacksmith shops, a shoe shop, a wagon shop, the ''Reed House,'' and in 1850 it had secured from Shelburn the stage headquarters and the post office. At this time Binghamton was one of the prosperous places of the county.

Binghamton is one mile east of Amboy. There the cemetery was established in the early day and in it, Patience, wife of A. B. Searls, was first to be buried. She died Dec. 19, 1846.

Rocky Ford was settled early and became the center of manufacturing interests without being platted. The old Indian trail from west to east crossed the river here. Timothy Perkins settled here first. He and Horace Bowen erected a sawmill, which passed successively into the hands of Lee, Mason, Van Arnam (or Van Norman) and Dutcher. In 1849, Frederick R. Dutcher platted the property and named the plat, Shelburn. The river was the dividing line. Dutcher erected a distillery at once and in 1853, he added a store. Jacob Doan next year put in another store.

The Shelburn Manufacturing Company of which Dutcher was president, put up a large flouring mill in 1856. It was combined with the distillery and Shelburn attracted considerable trade and a large business was handled.

The mill was a stone building 60x60 feet, four stories high. The distillery was 40x140, two and a half stories high. The dam was built of solid masonry, the whole costing $65,000. Col. John B. Wyman for a time was an influential member of the company.

In 1859, by reason of an explosion, the south wall was partially thrown down and the boiler was hurled thirty rods across the creek. The engineer, John Bentley was injured badly. Loss $4,000. Ten years later the building was destroyed by fire. A small section of wall stands today to invite attention to the former glories of Shelburn. Beautiful Rocky Ford cemetery is located here. It is owned by the Catholic Church at Amboy.

When the Illinois Central was built, Shelburn and Binghamton collapsed and became deserted villages.

The first postal facilities were furnished by Dixon. Then Asa B. Searls became first postmaster and the office was maintained in his house. Warren Badger followed when Searls resigned. Dutcher was made postmaster of Shelburn, but when Binghamton secured its removal, Dutcher secured its reestablishment under the name of Equator.

Shelburn had all the opportunity to lead. When the mail route was changed from Peoria to Peru, Shelburn became the stage headquarters. Two lines were run, one by Frink and Walker and another by Dixon and Andruss. But the Binghamton people outgeneraled their rivals at every turn and finally secured the stage lines. Midway between Binghamton and Shelburn, stands Amboy, made by the entrance of the Illinois Central railroad.

In 1851, a corps of engineers under Roswell B. Mason ran lines through this locality. T. B. Blackstone, had charge of the men between Dixon and Bloomington. The town sites then were owned in many instances, by individuals or companies, composed of stockholders of the Central. Very much after present day methods they pursued the tactics of the present day man. At first a farm two miles north of the present depot, was bought and the company sent out word that the machine shops for the new road were to be located there. Some stone was hauled and the place actually was named Kepatau. This feint was made for the sole purpose of securing another farm for the town. The scheme worked very well and Amboy stands today just where the Central people desired, on the ''Farwell place.''

In June, 1853, Michael Egan came here to begin work on the station buildings. Plans for the machine shops were made and Mr. Egan pushed their construction with rapidity. Eighteen hundred and fifty-four became the birth year of Amboy. Town lots were sold rapidly. Farwell's and Wyman's and Gilson's additions were platted and residence lots went off rapidly. R. D. Peironet and Samuel Goldman opened the first stores; the first named had a small stock of knick-knacks. Goldman sold clothing.

In the spring of 1854, Josiah Little erected a store building which was opened in October and in which a stock of drugs, hard-ware and groceries was sold; Wilcox and Wooster followed with a dry goods and grocery store. Later, Mr. Wooster bought the interest of his partner. During these first formative years, Amboy grew very rapidly.

David Bainter was the first doctor to settle here. William E. Ives, the first lawyer to settle here, came in December, 1854. Alfred Tooker and James H. Filch came the next year. Alonzo Kinyon, who read law here came about the same time. Desirous of securing the facilities of a court, Kinyon secured the passage of an act by the Legislature establishing, The "Court of Common Pleas of the City of Amboy," with jurisdiction concurrent with the circuit court, cases of murder and treason excepted. In 1869, Kinyon was elected judge of this court and C. D. Vaughan was elected clerk. The court did not prosper, however, and in 1874 the law was repealed.

Armed with a letter of introduction to Stephen A. Douglas, Bernard H. Trusdell came to Amboy in 1858, to practice law. Douglas had advised Amboy. Edward Southwick moved here from Dixon, but died about the time Mr. Trusdell came here. Norman H. Ryan came a little later. Both Trusdell and Ryan became lawyers of renown.

Incorporation as a town followed soon. In the winter of 1854-5, the town was incorporated. Allen E. Wilcox became the first president of the board of trustees. H. B. Judkins became the second clerk.

On Dec. 23, 1856, a citizens meeting was held in Mechanics hall to consider the question of city organization. J. B. Wyman, William E. Ives, Alonzo Kinyon and Edward Southwick, were appointed a committee to draft a charter. On the 30th at an adjourned meeting held at the Orient House, the charter was reported, adopted section by section and then as a whole. On Feb. 16, 1857, an act was approved and March 2 was set for the election to adopt or ratify it. On the 8th following, John B. Wyman was elected mayor. Orange D. Reed, marshal; S. S. Stedman, E. S. Reynolds, J. R. Stevens, F. B. Little, J. M. Davis and J. A. Jackson were elected aldermen. Two hundred and thirty-four votes were cast. Daniel T. Wood was made clerk; W. E. Ives, attorney; A. E. Wilcox, assessor; W. B. Andruss, collector; Edward Little, treasurer and Arthur Pond, surveyor.

In 1854-5, the post offices at Shelburn and Binghamton were discontinued and Amboy secured the same. Orange D. Reed was made first postmaster.

The first birth in the new village was that of Medora Bell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Bell, Aug. 29, 1854. The first birth in the township was that of Simon, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Dexter in 1836; the second was that of William C. Doan, son of James Doan, Oct. 16, 1837. The first marriage in the village of Amboy was that of William C. Bartlett, and Caroline Bartlett, Oct. 18, 1854. The first death in the village was that of Almira Melissa, infant daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. B. Stuart, Jan. 5, 1855.

Two tragedies occurred in Amboy. Owen O'Connor shot and killed Dennis Allen, saloon keeper, Oct. 11, 1872. On April 18, 1873, John McGrath stabbed and killed Edward Egan. A Negro killed another Negro in the passenger station by striking with his fist.

Amboy has made several fights to secure the county seat and always she has been vigilant to see that Dixon obtained no advantages. For that reason, until the erection of the present court-house, Dixon always had been compelled to build and maintain the courthouse. In 1866, the first effort was made. With Dr. George Ryon in the Legislature it was conceded that her chances 'were better than an average. But the effort failed. When it became known that the present new courthouse was probable for Lee County, Amboy made another desperate effort to secure the county seat; but this defeat was more decided than the first. The removal of the division offices and the shops from Amboy, had cut her population, while the territory naturally tributory to Dixon, as well as Dixon herself had been enjoying a long period of prosperity and increase in population.

Amboy has been subjected to fearful fires. The first big fire on the morning of Dec. 10, 1863, originated under the brick city hall, three stories high. A $35,000 loss followed; insurance, $14,000.

In 1864 a $45,000 fire followed; insurance, $38,000. March 10, 1865, another big fire followed. Other fires occurred April 2, 1868; April 25, 1871, and Aug. 25, 1871, the last one entailing a loss of $175,000; insurance, $103,000. In this last fire John Shannon was burned to death. He had been incarcerated in the city jail and was forgotten until too late. Other fires of smaller degree have followed since, but none of any magnitude.

After the railroad debt had been saddled upon the community, the struggles of Amboy were hopeless, many times. No money could be secured for improvements. The railroad shops were taken away. The division offices were removed; yet she struggled forward bravely, and beginning with the administration of Mayor John P. Harvey, splendidly paved streets made their appearance. Boulevard lamps followed. Now Amboy is pushing, forward splendidly. I do insist, however, that the splendid grasp which Mayor Harvey had of the situation and his uncompromising efforts for order, beauty and business development have been responsible very largely for the new Amboy of today.

The Lewis families in Lee County are descendants of George Lewis, who, with his brother John, came from East Greenwich, County of Kent, England, about 1630, to Plymouth, Mass.

George married Sarah Jenkins in England. She was sister of Edward Jenkins, one of the earliest settlers of Scituate, and ancestor of most of that name in New England. George Lewis was a clothier by occupation and in religious matters was a Separatist, or one of the Pilgrims, as distinguished from the Puritans of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He went from Plymouth to Scituate, and thence to Barnstable, being one of the early settlers of that town.

Nathaniel Lewis, Jr., as he is known in the family genealogy, was a direct descendant of George Lewis, and was born in Vermont May 27, 1769 and, with his wife (Esther Tuttle), came to Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, about the year 1785. Six sons and six daughters were born to them in Susquehanna County, and their names, date of birth, date and place of death are as follows:

Esther, born June 2, 1793; married Joshua McKune; died at Osceola, Wisconsin, Sept. 19, 1878.
Levi, born Nov. 9, 1796; died Sept. 28, 1857, at Amboy, Illinois.
Lurena, born Dec. 22, 1798; married Augustus Trowbridge; died Dec. 7, 1867, at Lee Center, Illinois.
Nathaniel C, born May 3, 1803; died Nov. 27, 1864, at Genoa, DeKalb County, Illinois.
Sarah, born May 1, 1805; married Sabin Trowbridge; died Dec. 8, 1861, at Lee Center, Illinois.
Joseph, born April 15, 1807; died May 5, 1882, at Amboy, Illinois.
Timothy P., born March 28, 1809; died Jan. 7, 1872, at Amboy, Illinois.
Elizabeth, born Nov. 13, 1811; married Hezekiah McKune; died Feb. 7, 1899, at Lee Center, Illinois.
Ann, born Feb. 4. 1814; married Austin B. Trowbridge; died Feb. 11, 1880, at Lee Center, Illinois.
Hiel, born Dec. 31, 1816; died April 28, 1880, in Amboy Township, Lee County, Illinois.
Miles, born May 11, 1818; died Aug. 27, 1877, at Lee Center, Illinois.
Olive, born June 17, 1823; married Alpheus G. Skinner; died Oct. 1, 1892, at China Township, Lee County, Illinois.

These twelve children of Nathaniel Lewis, Jr., were all born in Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, and all, with their families, came to Illinois between the years 1842 and 1845; and at one time, were all in Lee County, Illinois.

Amboy Of Today
By P. M. James

The city of Amboy has had its vicissitudes and days of darkness and gloom; but, phoenix-like, it is arising from the ashes of the dead past and with confidence and assurance is now looking straight into the future.

The removal of the Illinois Central railroad shops and the heavy bonded indebtedness of the township, voted for the construction of the Rock River railroad, the two ghastly spectres which for many years hung like a funeral pall over our people, are now matters of ancient history.

The Illinois Central has in a measure returned to Amboy, its monthly pay roll at the present time at this place amounting on the average to $15,900 with bright prospects for an increase in both pay roll and business and with a strong probability that this company will again make this place a regular terminal station. At the present time, the company makes Amboy its freight terminal and it is here well provided with side tracks and roundhouse. The business transacted by this company at this place is summarized by its gentlemanly agent, A. A. Carmichael, as follows:

Employees at station, 16; at roundhouse, 25; on section, 15; and on trains and engines, 140; making a total of 196 and an average of over thirty thousand freight cars are handled through the Amboy yard each month.

The Rock River railroad bonds have long since been paid ($100,000), and long years of interest, and from this time on the road constructed, now a branch of the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy railroad, will be a good investment and a source of income to the entire town, at least in the payment of taxes, which for the year 1912 amounted for the township to the sum of $2,692.46.

Amboy is also the western terminal of the Northern Illinois Electric Railway Company which has its road under construction from Amboy to DeKalb, and of which twelve miles, reaching through Lee Center and Bradford to near the Reynolds township line, are completed and in operation. These three railways give Amboy excellent shipping facilities, but the one thing that has during the past few years tended to build up Amboy and its business interest has been the development of the agricultural resources in this vicinity. By a thorough system of drainage by means of tile and open ditches, it has discovered that the farm lands in the vicinity of Amboy may and have become very productive and as a result our business men now look and depend on the farmer more than any other one class of people. As these farms continue to improve in value and productiveness it is but natural to believe that Amboy will be benefited thereby.

City Government

The city of Amboy was originally incorporated under a special charter Feb. 16, 1857, which was amended Feb. 24, 1869, but on May 8, 1888, was reorganized under the city and village laws of the state. The more marked improvements during the past few years have been the installation of a city water system, with the water supplied of an excellent quality from an artesian well over two thousand feet in depth, under Mayor George E. Young; the removal of the old wooden awnings in the business section, the construction of cement sidewalks and the installation of a general sewer system under Mayor J. P. Johnson; the paving of the streets in the business section, and the extension of water mains, sewers and cement walks under Mayor John P. Harvey; and the installation of the boulevard lighting system in the business section, and the improving and rebuilding of the electric lighting system of the entire city, under the present mayor, Fred N. Vaughan. The present officers of the city government are as follows:

F. N. Vaughan, mayor; Messrs. W. J. Keho, C. A. Fenstemaker, H. W. O'Toole, W. J. Edwards, T. B. Fisher, James Briggs, Frank Brady, E. H. Barlow and A. J. Barlow, aldermen; J. W. Kelleher, city marshal; F. A. Flach, city clerk; Paul F. Reilly, city treasurer; William L. Leech, city attorney; John M. Egan, Jr., city engineer; F. C. Vaughan, fire marshal; Dr. E. A. Sullivan, health officer; V. B. Andnuss, water commissioner;']S. H. Badger, J. C. MacKinnon and W. J. Edwards, park commissioners.


The civic pride of the citizens is shown by the well painted homes, the well kept lawns and the care and attention given street trees, shrubs and ornamental plants, by reason of which Amboy always presents a neat and tidy appearance. The city owns Green River Park, a tract of about forty acres lying adjacent to the city on the east and which is well shaded with native oak trees. This park is situated on the banks of Green river, is well cared for by the city and is well patronized, not only by the people of the city, but also by many people from a distance.

Adjacent to this park on the south and west are located the grounds and improvements of the Lee County Fair Association with a half-mile track which is a joy to the horsemen. During the fair the association is granted the use of the park, and taken together they make an ideal place for the annual gathering of the people of the entire county.


Amboy Hospital, owned by the Amboy Hospital Company, Incorporated, is located at the corner of Plant and Division Street and is well equipped and has competent nurses for the treatment and care of the sick and for surgical operations, and is being much appreciated and well patronized by our citizens. While it is owned and controlled as a private corporation, yet its doors are always open for any legitimate business and all reputable physicians and surgeons.


There are three school buildings in Amboy, a pebble dash two-room building located on East Main Street, a two-story brick building on West Provost Street, and a two-story pressed brick high school building located near the center of the city. Grades 1 to 4, inclusive, are taught in the two first mentioned buildings, and grades 5 to 12 inclusive, are taught in the high school building.

The high school has a regular four-year course and includes household science, manual training and agriculture. As to the character and standard of the work done in the high school it is sufficient to mention the fact that this school has been on the fully accredited list of the University of Illinois for many years, and at the present time its graduates may obtain seventeen credits or two more than are required for admission to the university.

The board of education consists of Frank P. Blocher, president; P. M. James, secretary; and Messrs. Fred N. Vaughan, J. M. Egan Jr., G. A. Deming, C. H. Wooster and Charles A. Zeigler. The teachers for 1913-14 are: Otis M. Eastman, superintendent and principal of the high school; Misses Myrtle Kenney, Ruth F. Keefer and Launa B. Robinson in the high school; and in the grades. Misses Edna Washburn, Josie F. Keho, Jennie Carroll, Margaret Hammond, Catherine Clark, Leota Dee Brown and Lena Elois Scranton. Mr. Eastman and Miss Keefer are from the University of Illinois; Miss Robinson from Wesley an University of Bloomington, Illinois; and Miss Kenney a post graduate of Southern Illinois Normal University; of the grade teachers, three are Normal School graduates, and all have had normal school training.


To accommodate the various religious beliefs of her citizens Amboy is well supplied with church organizations, as follows:

St. Patrick 's Catholic Church, with a large brick edifice located on Jones street, and with Rev. T. J. Cullen, priest, in charge; German Lutheran, located on Jones street; Baptist on Mason street, Rev. Earl A. Riney, pastor; Methodist Episcopal with a stone edifice on Mason street, Rev. J. W. George, pastor; St. Luke's Episcopal, on Mason street; Congregational, located at corner of Main and Plant streets, with Rev. H. H. Appellman, pastor; and the Christian Science occupy rooms in the Badger Block.


For many years Amboy has had two newspapers, known as the Amboy News and the Amboy Journal, but in October, 1913, the News Journal Company was incorporated and took over and consolidated both plants and will continue publishing the Amboy News.

The names of the directors and officers of the News-Journal Company are as follows:

G. L. Carpenter, president; Philip Clark, vice president; Andrew Aschenbrenner, H. H. Badger, George P. Miller; and Mary J. Burnham, secretary-treasurer.


The First National Bank of Amboy, as shown by its statement of Oct. 21, 1913, had a capital of $100,000.00, a surplus and undivided profits amounting to $107,690.16, and total assets of $1,155,724.17. The officers of the bank are, Fred N. Vaughan, president; Elijah L. King, vice president; H. H. Badger, cashier, and L. L. Brink and W. B. Vaughan, assistant cashiers. The directors are F. N. Vaughan, E. L. King, E. L. Price, H. W. Hillison, W. V. Jones, W. A. Green, P. M. James, Philip Clark and H. H. Badger.

The Amboy State Bank was established in December, 1912, with a capital of $25,000.00; on Oct. 22, 1913, it reported assets to the amount of $84,624.14. The officers and directors of the bank are: George P. Miller, president; F. W. Harck, vice president; R. W. Ruckman, cashier; and Messrs. F. C. Haley, Jarvis Leake,. George Malach, J. A. Jones, A. D. Fristoe, R. W. Jamison and John Daehler.


The crying need in Amboy is the establishment of industries that will furnish work for our young people so that they will not be compelled to go elsewhere to find employment.

The John P. Harvey Bridge and Iron Works occupies commodious quarters with high grade machinery, and is engaged in concrete and structural steel work. Mr. Harvey employs ten men and his pay roll for labor for 1913 amounts to $6,500.00 per year and material $10,500.00.

The Sanitary Creamery Company purchases milk and cream and sells milk, cream and butter. It has twelve employees in its service, and last year paid out $71,296.85 for milk and cream and $7,118.00 for labor. The officers of the company are P. M. James, president; H. H. Badger, vice president, and J. C. MacKinnon, secretary-treasurer and general manager.

The Entorf Filter Company, Amboy, Ill., was incorporated on April 17, 1913, with a capital stock of $15,000.00. The company is engaged in the manufacture of the Entorf water separating filter for gasoline, kerosene and similar oils. The officers are Charles A. Entorf, president, and Carl P. Baird, secretary-treasurer.


Illinois Central Lodge, No. 178, A. F. and A. M., with 112 members: W. B. Vaughan, W. M.; B. B. Lewis, S. W.; J. C. MacKinnon, J. W.; V. B. Andruss, secretary; L. L. Brink, treasurer; W. L. Berryman, S. D.; Andrew Myers, J. D.; W. F. Graves, S. S.; Edward Morris, J. S.; W. F. Entorf, organist; T. B. Fisher, chaplain; W. P. Long, tyler.

Amboy Chapter 194, R. A. M., with 104 members: W. J. Edwards, E. H. P.; John C. MacKinnon, K.; W. B. Dewey, S.; John Reeves, secretary; W. P. Long, treasurer; J. H. Ayres, C. H.; J. P. Johnson, P. S.; A. A. Carmichael, R. A. C.; C. F. Dewey, M. 3 V.; F. C. Hegert, M. 2 V.; J. P. Brieiton, M. 1st W.; R. L. Virgil, sentinel; V. B. Andruss, chaplain; B. B. Lyons, steward.

Amboy Order Eastern Star with 131 Members

Mrs. J. P. Honeycutt, W. M.; Mr. J. P. Honeycutt, W. P.; Mrs. Mary Davis, A. M.; Mrs. Maude Brierton, secretary; Mr. John Reeves, treasurer; Mrs. Clara Carmichael, conductress; Mrs. Vera Peoples, A. C.; Miss Mae Searls, Ada; Mrs. Grace Brink, Ruth; Mrs. Helen Vaughan, Esther; Mrs. Ella Walters, Martha; Miss Mary Wood, Electa; Mrs. Fannie Doty, Warder; V. B. Andruss, sentinel; Mrs. W. B. Dewey, marshal; Mrs. Sarah Brierton, chaplain; Stella M. Klein, organist.

M. W. OF A.

Amboy Camp No. 158, W. M. of A. Membership 120. E. H. Barlow, counsel; G. M. Finch, advisor; W. P; Long, banker; W. B. Vaughan, clerk; E. J. Conderman, escort; Charles Kastler, watch-man; Dr. C. A. Zeigler, physician; W. F. Graves, C. W. Maine and Ai. Tuttle, managers, and R. L. Bissell, sentry.

K. OF C.

Keenan Council No. 740, Knights of Columbus, was instituted June 21, 1913, with forty-five charter members, which has since increased to 147. The present officers are:

Grand knight, William E. Clark; deputy grand knight, John P. Canavan; chancelor, Charles W. Rabbitt; financial secretary, John F. Hammond; advocate, D. M. Reilley; treasurer, Paul F. Reilley; chaplain. Rev. T. J. Cullen; lecturer. Rev. F. S. Porcella; inside guard, John J. Edwards; outside guard, Lyman T. Callahan; trustees, Philip Clark, J. P. Harvey and F. W. Meyer.

Amboy Commercial Club

Amboy Commercial Club has eighty members and the officers and directors are as follows:

W. T. Berryman, president; H. H. Badger, vice president; F. L. Doty, treasurer; B. B. Brewer, secretary; G. L. Carpenter, W. E. Clark, D. L. Berry, directors.

This club was incorporated in 1911; has commodious rooms in the Entorf building and is doing much for the commercial interests of the city.

I O. O. F.

Green River Lodge No. 999, 1. O. O. F. was instituted April 26, 1911, at Amboy. It has seventy members at present time. Officers are: T. O. Clink, N. G.; Oscar Wilhelm, V. G.; A. A..Virgil, secretary; J. F. Hook, treasurer; R. S. Brown, warden; George I. Welch, conductor; E .S, Coates, chaplain; J. S. Conkrite, inside guard; superintendents of N, G., J. A, Church and L. A. Emery; superintendents to V, G., E, H, Barlow and E. F. Barnes; W. L. Eddy, P. G.; R. L. Bissell, representative; J. A. Church, Dept.

Lee County Townships

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