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John T. Payne

PAYNE, John T., chief janitor of the State Normal School at Macomb, McDonough County, Ill., was born in Sullivan, Moultrie County, that State, February 2, 1845, a son of Richard Weston and Paulina (Hampton) Payne, of whom the former was born thirty miles south of Louisville, Ky., and the latter in the same general vicinity. John T. Payne was the fifth of twelve children born to his parents and was one of twin birth. At the age of fourteen years he left home and worked one summer on a farm, by the month, in the employ of Elias Myers. He also worked on N. P. Williams' farm for three years. In the meantime he had been a pupil in a commercial school. In April, 1864, Mr. Pavine enlisted in Company C, One Hundred Thirty-ninth Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry, which was sent to Columbus, Ky., afterward to Cairo, and later still, back to Columbus, where it was on duty guarding prisoners. Mr. Payne was discharged late in the fall of 1864, and returned to Eureka, whence he went to Havana, Ill., and worked eight years on a farm. He then went to Mason City, Iowa, where he was employed at farming from 1874 until 1887. Returning to Illinois he worked as a canvasser until the spring of 1888, after which he spent four years on his wife's farm in Emmet Township, McDonough County, and then moved to Macomb. On August 1, 1902, he was appointed chief janitor of the State Normal School. He has charge of one regular janitor, and supervises the work done by students of the institution who assist in keeping the building clean.

On January 10, 1888, Mr. Payne was married to Jennie M. (Murray) Welch, widow of John T. Welch, who was born and schooled in Kentucky. Mrs. Payne has one child, Ivan Garretson. Politically, Mr. Payne is a Republican. He served as Superintendent of Streets in Macomb for three years, and as Supervisor of Emmet Township one term. Fraternally, he is a member of the I. O. O. F., I. O. R. M., Rebekahs and G. A. R. He is considered very efficient in the performance of his duties at the State Normal School.

Source: The Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of McDonough County, compiled by Dr. Newton Bateman, and Paul Shelby, 1907, volume 2, pages 973-974, extracted 17 Mar 2020 by Norma Hass.

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