GAIN ROBINSON BLACK.
Gifted with the mathematical and mechanical skill which has distinguished many of his ancestors, Gain Robinson Black has devoted many years of his life to building and joining and general carpenter work, finding therein a congenial and profitable means of livelihood. During the greater part of his residence in Illinois he has also en-
gaged in farming and stock-raising, and for fourteen years was a Gauger in the Internal Revenue service in Peoria. In 1859 he purchased two hundred and thirty acres of land in Hollis Township, upon which he has since lived, and which constitutes one of the well equipped country properties in Peoria County. Besides erecting his own rural residence, and the barns and general buildings which are a part of the farm improvement, many other buildings of all kinds in Peoria and Fulton Counties are the result of his skill and ingenuity. In his varied capacities he has been
thrown with many people, and is one of the most widely and favorably known of the upbuilders of Hollis Township. A Republican in National politics, he has held the office of Justice of the Peace for more than twenty-five years.
The ancestors of Mr. Black acknowledged allegiance to Irish rule and institutions, and are first represented in America by the paternal grandfather, Joseph, who settled in Virginia.Here he reared his family, and, in Hardin County, Virginia, April 16, 1793, was born Joseph Wayne Black, the father of Gain Robinson, who died in Guernsey County, Ohio, October 28, 1851. The elder Black was a farmer, stock-raiser and surveyor, being especially interested in mathematics. In his young manhood he married Ann Eliza Hutchinson, daughter of Wyatt Hutchinson, a native of Virginia, and Elizabeth (Majors) Hutchinson, who was born on the Island of Jamaica. His son, Gain Robinson, was educated in the public schools, and received special private instruction in mathematics. In 1844 he settled in Hollis Township, where he followed the trade of carpentering for twenty years, during a portion of this time, during the war, and for ten or twelve succeeding years, being a partner with T. J. McGrew, Thomas Neill, and D. C. Holcomb, in the stock business.
The marriage of Mr. Black and Susan M. Powell occurred in Peoria County, January 25, 1849, Mrs. Black being a native of Guernsey County, Ohio, born in 1828, and dying in Peoria County, January 17, 1892. Of this union six children have been born. and, owing to their father's appreciation of the benefits of fine educational training, each child had every opportunity to develop his or her talents, and each became a duly qualified teacher. Cora was born September 13, 1852. Lida, who developed a particularly brilliant intelligence, was born October 6, 1855, and graduated from Saint Joseph's Convent, South Saint Louis, and from the Peoria Normal School, in 1873, receiving two diplomas before she was eighteen years of age. She subsequently turned her education to good account as a teacher in the schools of Peoria for five or six years, after which she married Dr. J. L. Brown, of Peoria, and died in 1883. Corda Black was born June 16, 1858, married George Norwood, and died April 22, 1895, leaving one son, Roy R. Charles P., was born November 6, 1859, graduated from the Parrish Business College, of Peoria, December 12, 1881, and is now serving his third term as Supervisor of Hollis Township. Lincoln and Judson (twins) were born March 14, 1863, and of these, Lincoln early showed a commendable ambition to look out for himself, and while yet a small boy entered the employ of Mr. Cooper (now of the firm
of Siegel, Cooper & Company, of Chicago), went with the firm to Chicago, and for ten years was a salesman in the large department store on State Street in that city. He is at present traveling for Godel & Sons, of Peoria. He married Flora Cluts, and has one child, James Bruce. Judson Black married Lida Maple, and lives with his father. His trade is that of an engineer, at which he worked for two years. To himself and wife have been born one child, Albert Gain.
POWELL, ALBERT GALLUP (deceased); Carpenter and Farmer; born in Guernsey County, Ohio, July 16, 1818, died September 11, 1899. He was the son of William and Mary (Davis) Powell, natives of Virginia. He settled in Hollis in 1837, being one of its earliest settlers and the first Township Assessor. He married for his first wife Eliza Jones, by whom he had three children: Emily, born September 19, 1846, wife of Alexander Calhoun; Smith, deceased, born November 27, 1848, and John, born October 5, 1851. In 1865, Mr. Powell married Mrs. Margaret Starts, a native of Washington County, Pennsylvania, born July 22, 1836. Hugh Starts, Mrs. Powell's first husband, was a soldier in the Civil War; he died in 1863, leaving his widow with three children: Melissa, deceased, born May 24, 1851; Mary, born August 24, 1852, wife of Walter Houghtaling of Indianola, Iowa, and Hugh, born January 10, 1863. The children of Albert G. and Margaret J. Powell are: Charles G., born December I, 1865 ; Margaret, born May 16, 1867, wife of William Cowser; Thomas S., born November 16, 1870; Albert, born July 16, 1874; and Walter D., born November 23, 1876. The family has always been conspicuous for the harmony which prevails among its members. Margaret J. Powell has been a member of La Marsh Baptist Church of Maple Ridge, for thirty years, and has resided on the Powell farm since 1865. Her father, Thomas Scott, was a shoemaker. He married Elizabeth Pease. Both were natives of Washington County, Pennsylvania. Mr. Powell was a member of the same Baptist Church. From the age of eighteen years, Mr. Powell worked at the carpenter trade.
About 1840, he bought land on Section 16, Hollis Township, and added to this tract from time to time, becoming the owner of 587 acres in all. He improved all of this property, and by his own unaided efforts accumulated an estate valued at $32,000.Politically he was a Republican.
CALHOUN, JOHN A.; Farmer; was born in Hollis Township, November 1, 1841; the son of Alfred and Mary (Goodwin) Calhoun, natives of Indiana; educated at the Maple Ridge School. October 25, 186l, he enlisted in Company I, Thirty-second Illinois Volunteer Infantry, under Col, John A. Logan, and served till the close of the war,—the latter part of his service being under re-enlistment. He received his discharge in September, 1865. He took part in many battles and was with Grant in the Western Campaign, being present at Shiloh and at Kenesaw
Mountain; in the former was wounded in the arm, and at the latter in the leg, for which wounds he draws a pension. In 1866, Mr. Calhoun married Emily Powell, a daughter of Albert G. Powell, one of the early settlers of Hollis Township, whose sketch appears on another page of this work. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Calhoun are: Flora Oedewaldt, born in November, 1866; Ulysses T., born April, 1868; Albert, born March, 1870; Chester Hilton, born. June, 1873; Mary Evans, born, May, 1875; Smith L., born, October, 1877; Charles I., born, May, 1881; John B., born, May, 1884; and Leonard, born, February, 1887.