John Walters

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 WALTERS, who owns and operates a fine farm of two hundred and forty acres on section 12, township 12 north, range 4 west, is one of the worthy citizens Britain has furnished to Henderson County. He was born in Lauitian Parish, Monmouthshire, on the 12th of February, 1820, and is a son of John and Elizabeth (Baldwin) Walters. Of their family of seven children, he is the eldest, and was followed by Thomas and Amelia, who are now deceased; Charlotta; Elizabeth, deceased; and Mary, widow of Alex Christie.

John Walters was reared by his grandfather, with whom he remained until sixteen years of age, during which time he attended the common schools. When he had attained that age he started out in life for himself, working as a farm hand, and has since been dependent on his own resources, so that the success which he has achieved in life is the just reward of his own la- bors. During his entire residence in England he worked for wages. Believing that he could better his financial condition by emigrating to America, he made arrangements to cross the Atlantic. On the 4th of May, 1852, he boarded a sailing-vessel at Liverpool, England, and after forty-three days spent upon the briny deep landed in New York on the 20th of June. Coming at once to the West, he took up his residence in Henderson County, locating in Oquawka.

Mr. Walters was married ere leaving his native land, having in 1851 wedded Miss Frances Edwards. On the 13th of May, 1858, he was united in marriage with Miss Olive Jenkinson, and by their union were born eight children, five sons and three daughters: Thomas; Frances, wife of L. Lauver; Wesley; George; William; Nettie, wife of S. Simons; Joseph, deceased; and Amanda, wife of W. Brock.

Mr. Walters made his first purchase of land in Henderson County in 1853, becoming owner of a farm of one hundred and sixty acres, which he operated for a year and then sold. In 1855, he bought the farm on which he now lives, comprising one hundred and sixty acres, but its boundaries he has since extended, until two hundred and forty acres of rich land now pay tribute to his care and cultivation. It is a well-improved place, supplied with all the accessories and conveniences of a model farm, and the buildings thereon stand as monuments to the enterprise and progressive spirit of the owner. Mr. Walters is independent in politics, preferring to support the men whom he thinks best qualified for the office, regardless of party affiliations. He has served as School Director, and the cause of education finds in him a warm friend. For thirty-five years he has been a faithful and consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and during nearly all this period he has held some church office. He is a charitable and benevolent man, whose many excellencies of character have won him high esteem, and his example is well worthy of emulation.