Millard F. Bruner, a well-known and prominent citizen of McDonough County, Ill., who is engaged in general farming and stock-raising just west of Macomb Normal School, was born in that county, January 9, 1857, a son of David and Rhoda (Hills) Bruner, of whom the father was a native of Kentucky, and the mother born in Schuyler County, Ill. The paternal grandparents were Jacob and Maria (Bechtold) Bruner, the former having been born in Kentucky, and on the maternal side the grandparents were Ishmael and Elizabeth (Wright) Hills. David Bruner, the father, came to McDonough County in 1843 and settled in Eldorado Township, where he lived about twenty-four years engaged in general farming. He then sold out and bought a farm in Industry Township, which he cultivated until his removal to Table Grove in 1888, where he resided until his death in the spring of 1894. The deceased was an old-line Whig, and afterward joined the ranks of the Republicans. In his religious faith he was a member of the Predestination Baptist Church. His wife, the mother of Mr. Bruner, is still living.
Millard F. Bruner was the fifth in a family of eight children. He spent the first ten years of his life on his father's farm in Eldorado Township, and after the family moved to Industry Township attended public school as opportunity offered. There he remained until 1876 and then bought a farm of 106 acres three miles south of the paternal homestead, where he spent eight years. After his father moved to Table Grove, he went back to the latter's farm, where he stayed until the fall of 1898. He then sold the property in Industry Township and purchased a farm of 192 acres in Emmet Township, which he rented, and thence removed to Macomb in the fall of 1903, making his home on his present farm. He also bought 180 acres in the same township. Mr. Bruner built a fine residence and outbuildings and made many improvements. His home is handsome and modern, being located opposite the State Normal School.
Mr. Bruner was married February 10, 1876, to Ida L. Downen, who was born and schooled in McDonough County. Three children, David, Thomas and Frederick, resulted from this union. Politically, Mr. Bruner is a Republican. In 1898 he was elected Sheriff of McDonough County, and made his residence for four years in the county jail. Before settling on his present farm he also lived one year in the east part of Macomb.
Fraternally, Mr. Bruner is connected with the Masonic Order (Industry Lodge, A. F. & A. M.), Modern Woodmen of America and Mystic Workers. The subject of this sketch is one of the most intelligent and substantial citizens of McDonough County, and is respected by all who know him.
Source: The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of McDonough County, compiled by Dr. Newton Bateman, and Paul Shelby, 1907. Submitted by Joanne Scobee Morgan <[email protected]>