SPENCER E. VAUGHN is well worthy of being represented in the chronicles of the enterprising farmers and honored pioneers of Pope County, as he is a member of one of the early pioneer families, and has himself been actively interested in everything pertaining to the development and progress of this region. He is one of the most extensive farmers of township 12, range 7, his property being located on section 21, and with the exception of his father's old homestead of one hundred and eighty acres, it is all located in a body. He has been for many years engaged in serving his fellow-citizens in various important positions, having been Constable for twelve years, a portion of the time acting as Deputy Sheriff; Justice of the Peace for eight years and for half that time Overseer of the Poor. In the latter position the only criticism passed upon him was for helping the poor and dependent more than was considered necessary by the frugal and saving members of society, who are, and not altogether without reason, opposed to making such a charitable institution too inviting to the general public.
Our subject was born in this township in 1843, his father and mother being Jackson and Nancy (Edwards) Vaughn. The former, who was born in this county in 1815, was a son of George Vaughn, of North Carolina, one of the earliest settlers of this region, to which he came in 1808, bringing his wife and three children. For that time they were in good circumstances financially, though they- were obliged to make the journey in what would now be considered emigrant style, coming in an old-fashioned cart drawn by horses. On their arrival in Illinois they settled at a point about three miles west of our subject's home, at the famous spring known as the Cummins Spring, one of the best in this part of the county. They made a permanent home there and made a number of improvements upon the place. Their family comprised five sons and four daughters, of whom Jackson was the fifth in order of birth. Only two of the family are now living: Charles, a farmer in Tennessee, and Rebecca, widow of Squire Wallace.
Jackson Vaughn married Miss Nancy Edwards, a native of Western Tennessee, and daughter of Spencer Edwards, a Baptist minister, who preached in this neighborhood from 1820 to 1830. Our subject's parents were married in Illinois in 1833, and with the exception of the year 1836, which they passed in Belmont, Miss., they were residents of this county during the remainder of their lives. They reared a family of ten children, four sons and six daughters, and lost three children who died young. The father died in 1865, at the age of fifty years, leaving an estate of one hundred and eighty acres of land, well stocked, and some money. After surviving her husband seventeen years Mrs. Vaughn also departed this life, in 1882, at which time she was aged seventy-two years.
William, the brother of our subject, died in July, 1888, aged fifty-one years. He left a family of four sons and two daughters. Thomas, who died in the winter of 1888, aged forty-three years, left a wife and four children. George was a volunteer in Company A, One Hundred and Twentieth Illinois Infantry, and was in service for over three years, much of his time being spent as a clerk in one or other of the departments. He was called from the shores of time in May, 1889, at the age of fifty-five years, leaving a wife and five children. The living members of the family are: Sarah Ann, wife of John G. Cullem, a farmer of this township; Elizabeth C, wife of John Tucker, who is also engaged in farming in this locality; Harriet A., widow of Abraham S. Harger, who lives on a farm in Golconda Township; our subject, next in order of birth; Nancy M., wife of William Black, a farmer in Kansas; Martha, wife of John A. Finney, of Golconda Township, and Frances A., wife of W. C. Mathews, a railroad engineer in Kansas.
Mr. Vaughn was a volunteer in the One Hundred and Twentieth Illinois Infantry, being a member of Company A. Enlisting during the first part of the war, when only in his seventeenth year, he was returned to his parents by the authorities, as he was under the age required by the recruiting officers. He was in camp for two months at Holly Springs, Miss., and was then discharged on account of poor health. When only nineteen he was married to Miss Mary L. Hazell, their union being celebrated in April, 1862. Mrs. Vaughn died within thirteen months, and her little infant daughter soon followed her. Mr. Vaughn next married Miss Sarah Jane Lamar, who was born and reared to womanhood in Hardin County, and who was a daughter of Elijah Lamar. Mrs. Vaughn died in 1875, leaving an infant son, Loren F., who is now eighteen years of age, and is attending school. Our subject married for his third wife Miss Minerva Lambert, a daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth (Shelby) Lambert, the former of Tennessee, and the latter of Hardin County. Mrs. Vaughn was born in this county, and by her marriage became the mother of two sons and six daughters. The two sons died in infancy, and the remaining members of the family are as follows: Mildred L., Minerva C, Nora D., Melissa F., Anna E. and Dosliia M.
Mr. Vaughn has met with marked success in his business enterprises, having purchased his homestead in 1875. His farm now comprises seven hundred and eighty-five acres, having grown from his former small possessions of one hundred acres, which he purchased in 1867 for $500. Four hundred acres are under good cultivation, and in addition to growing large crops of wheat and corn he raises Irish potatoes quite extensively, sometimes as many as two thousand bushels per annum. He keeps horses, cattle, sheep and hogs, and makes a specialty of breeding good horses. Among the number is a fine young stallion of Clydesdale and "Gold Dust" pedigree. He is perfect in color, size and style, and is considered a very valuable animal. Mr. and Mrs. Vaughn are members of the Christian Church, of which our subject is an Elder, and devoted to her best interests.
Extracted from Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, published in 1893, page 293
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