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Joseph N. Johnson

JOHNSON, Joseph N., a retired gardener, residing in Macomb, Ill., was born in Old Boston, Lincolnshire, England, February 19, 1835. His parents. Michael and Sarah (Pepper) Johnson, were also natives of Lincolnshire, as was the maternal grandfather, John Pepper. Of the five children born to his parents, Joseph N. Johnson was the third in order of birth. His schooling was obtained partly in England and partly in this country. He came to the United States and located near Plainfield, in Will County, Ill., where he worked at farming. Two years later he went to West Union, Fayette County, Iowa, and there, in April, 1861, enlisted in Company F, Third Regiment Iowa Volunteer Infantry, which saw its first service in Missouri fighting bushwhackers. In September, 1861, he took part in the fight at Blue Mills Landing, near Liberty, Mo. (the home of the famous bandits, the James Brothers), where he was wounded. During the winter of 1861-62 his regiment was on guard duty at the St. Louis Arsenal, and later was at Pittsburg Landing, and took part in the campaign through Tennessee. Having been discharged on account of disability he came to McDonough County, where after recovering his health, he went to work on a farm. This he continued until his marriage, when he rented a farm until 1870, when he bought a farm in Carroll County, Mo., upon which he remained five years. At the end of this period he returned to Macomb, where, after clerking for a while, he bought three and a half acres on West Piper Street, and there engaged in gardening and fruit-raising. He also served about a year as night policeman to fill an unexpired term. In July, 1903, after an absence from his native land of nearly fifty years, he went back to England, where he spent three months, when he returned to the land of his adoption.

On April 26, 1866, Mr. Johnson was married to Mary E. Wisslead, who was born in Sibsey, Lincolnshire, England, where in girlhood she received her education in the public school. Two children were the offspring of this union, namely: Henry N., of San Francisco, Cal., and Effie M., who died in infancy. Religiously, Mr. Johnson adheres to the faith of the Universalist Church, and politically, espouses the cause of the Democratic party. His fraternal connection is with the G. A. R. The subject of this sketch has led a toilsome and persevering life, and has well earned the leisure which he now enjoys.

Source: The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of McDonough County, compiled by Dr. Newton Bateman, and Paul Shelby, 1907, volume 2, pages 921-922, extracted 11 May 2019 by Norma Hass.

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