Lewis Ira Hutchins

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.

LEWIS IRA HUTCHINS, editor and publisher of the Henderson County Democrat of Oquawka, has been engaged in his present line of business since 1890, and is now at the head of one of the leading newspapers of this part of the State. A native of Illinois, he was born in Washington Township, Carroll County, on the 14th of June, 1868. His father, Samuel Hutchins, was born in Conneaut, Ashtabula County, Ohio, in October, 1828, and in 1848 was united in marriage with Miss Amanda Southworth. She was a native of the State of Vermont, and went to Ohio with her parents when two years of age. They became the parents of four children: Helen, wife of William Hunter, a farmer of Everly, Iowa; William A., who is engaged in the practice of medicine in Orangeville, Ill.; Olive E., at home; and Lewis Ira. The father of this family, who is an agriculturist, came to Illinois in 1833, locating near Galena, and in 1870 removed to Stephenson County, locating upon a farm.

In that locality, L. I. Hutchins spent the days of his boyhood and youth, attending the district schools of the neighborhood through the winter season, while in the summer months he aided in the labors of the farm, plowing, planting and cultivating the land until seventeen years of age. He then accompanied his parents on their removal to Orangeville, Ill., whither they went on account of the better educational facilities there afforded. While in Orangeville, Lewis spent one year in the High School, and later pursued his studies for some time in the Northern Illinois College, at Dakota, Ill.

In 1886, Mr. Hutchins began teaching school, and was thus employed for two years. In 1888, at the age of twenty years, he established the Courier, a newspaper of Orangeville, which he continued to edit for a year. In 1890, desiring to publish a paper in the interests of a political party, he purchased the Henderson County Democrat, of Oquawka, and has since been in charge of the same. He takes an active part in political affairs, warmly advocating the principles of the Democracy, and has attended its local, State and National conventions, usually as a delegate. He served as Assistant Enrolling Clerk of the House in the Thirty-eighth General Assembly, in Springfield, Ill., during the winter of 1893. He has been Secretary of the County Democratic Central Committee for many years, and works earnestly in behalf of his party, doing all in his power to promote its growth and insure its success. He also takes an active interest in everything pertaining to the welfare of the community, and is a public-spirited and enterprising citizen. Socially, he is a member of Oquawka Lodge No. 123, A.F.N A.M. His religious sympathy is with the Christian Church, of which his parents are members. He is a great lover of books and works of art, and is an earnest student of the best literature.