From the Portrait and biographical record of Hancock, McDonough and Henderson counties, Illinois : containing
biographical sketches of prominent and representative citizens of the county (1894)
May, 1894. Lake City Publishing Co.
JOHN IRONS, who now carries on general farming and stock-raising on section 32, Walnut Grove Township, Henderson
County, claims Missouri as the State of his nativity, his birth having occurred in Randolph County on the 1st of
April, 1856. His parents, Charles and Mary Irons, were both natives of Zanesville, Ohio, and in an early day
emigrated to Missouri. At the breaking out of the Civil War, the father entered the Confederate service, and was in
the Southern army until nearly the close of the war, when he was taken ill, dying in the South. His wife had passed
away about 1860, and our subject was thus left an orphan.
John Irons was only about four years old at the time of his mother's death, and was then bound out to N. H.
Rutherford, a farmer of Randolph County, Mo., with whom he remained until eighteen years of age. His privileges and
advantages in youth were very limited. He attended school but very little, and hence is almost entirely self
educated. At the age of eighteen he left his native State and came to Illinois, locating in McDonough County, where
he spent about a vear, working as a farm hand by the month.
As a companion and helpmate on life's journey Mr. Irons chose Miss Dora Mathers, their marriage being celebrated
on the 16th of January, 1854. The lady is a native of Henderson County, and is a daughter of Robert Mathers. In
that family were six children, and she has three brothers and a sister now living. Mr. Irons also has two sisters
living: Mrs. Ella Sharp, who makes her home in Macon County, Mo.; and Mrs. Maggie Poison, who is living on a farm
in Henderson County. Four children were born unto Mr. and Mrs. Irons, namely: Robert, now deceased; Logan and
Effie, both at home; and one who died in infancy.
The home of the family is pleasantly located in Walnut Grove Township, where Mr. Irons now owns eighty acres of
good land. He carries on general fanning and stock-raising and is meeting with success in his undertakings.
Industry and enterprise are numbered among his chief characteristics, and have been the means of securing for him
the comfortable property which he now possesses. His place is neat and thrifty in appearance and indicates to the
passer-by the careful supervision of the owner. Mr. Irons is a loyal and faithful citizen, yet devotes little time
to public or political interests. Socially, he is connected with the Modern Woodmen of America. Although his father
was a Southern soldier and he was reared as a strong Democrat, he votes the Republican ticket, and is a warm
advocate of party principles.