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S. H. Black

That the pursuit of agriculture is conducive to sound health and prolonged physical vigor is manifest in the large proportion of men engaged in that occupation who live to advanced years in the enjoyment of the full vigor of their bodily faculties. The close companionship with nature incident to a fanning life serves, moreover, to stimulate that reflective mood, which tends to strengthen the moral character and invigorate the mind. An apt illustration of the truth of this statement is notable in the career of the subject of this sketch, who is now living in comfortable and healthful retirement at Good Hope, McDonough County, Ill., after more than three score of his mature years have been spent in tilling the soil. Mr. Black was born in Clark County, Ohio, on March 19, 1826, a son of James and Catherine Black, natives of Virginia. James Black was a farmer in the "Old Dominion," from which he moved in 1811 to the State of Ohio, where he still continued farming, and was also engaged in milling. Thus occupied, he passed the remainder of his days. He was a man of amiable disposition and correct deportment, and his record was free from reproach. His son, S. H., attended the common schools of Ohio in boyhood and assisted in the operation of the home farm until he was about twenty-three years of age. In 1849, accompanied by his brother, he traveled on horseback to Chicago, proceeding thence to Rock Island, and after visiting Iowa, came to Emmet Township, McDonough County, where he tarried for a. short time. Subsequently, he spent about four years in carpenter work at Macomb, Ill., after which he went back to the Buckeye State. Returning in 1857 to McDonough County, he purchased 183 acres of land in Emmet Township; and also bought ninety acres in Sciota Township, where he lived most of the time during the rest of his active life. His labors were attended with successful results until, having acquired a competency, he retired from active pursuits and made his home in Good Hope. Nearly all the improvements on his farms were made by himself.

On December 4, 1856, Mr. Black was united in marriage, in Miami County, Ohio, with Mary M. Bosler, who was born in Indiana, and there, in her youth, enjoyed the advantages afforded by the public schools. The following named children resulted from their union, namely: Ella (Mrs. Huckley); Isaac, who carries on farming in Emmet Township; James, a resident of Newark, Ohio; Elizabeth (Mrs. Runyan), whose home is in McDonough County; and William, who occupies the homestead farm. In politics, Mr. Black is a supporter of the Democratic party. Previous to the Civil War, he held the office of Assessor of Sciota Township, and also served as School Director and Commissioner of Highways. He subsequently filled the positions of Supervisor and School Trustee of Sciota Township. The duties of these several public trusts were discharged by him with ability and fidelity, and to the entire satisfaction of the people of the township. In religious belief Mr. Black adheres to the faith of the Baptist Church.

Source: The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of McDonough County, compiled by Dr. Newton Bateman, and Paul Shelby, 1907, volume 2, page 827, extracted 19 Nov 2018 by Norma Hass.

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