Biography - Jacob Graff
JACOB GRAFF is a prominent and well known farmer residing on section 20,
Ora Township, Jackson County. As he is widely and favorably known in this
community we feel assured that the record of his life will prove of interest
to many of our readers and therefore gladly give it a place in this volume.
He was born in Somerset County, Pa., April 6, 1831, and is a son of William
and Rosanna (Imhoff) Graff. They were married in 1829, and in 1841 removed
with their family to the west, taking up their residence in Levan Township,
Jackson County. The father was a farmer by occupation, and here followed
agricultural pursuits until his death, which occurred September 25, 1878.
His wife, who was born and reared in Somerset County, Pa., was a member of
the Lutheran Church in early life, but afterward united with the Christian
Church. She passed away on the old homestead, September 25, 1892.
the family were the following children: Henry, John O., Jacob, Andrew;
Elmira, who died at the age of twelve years; and Mary, wife of Tolbert
Boucher. The father was a consistent member of the Lutheran Church. In
politics he was a stanch supporter of the Whig party in early life, but when
the Republican party sprang into existence he joined its ranks and was one
of its stalwart advocates during his remaining days.
The subject of
this sketch was a youth of ten summers when brought by his family to
Illinois, where he was reared in the usual manner of farmer lads. On the
27th of December, 1855, he married Mary E. Levan, daughter of Samuel and Amy
Levan. Her father was a native of Somerset County, Pa., and became one of
the pioneer settlers of Jackson County, Ill. When the township in which he
lived was organized it was named in his honor. He improved a large farm, and
at his death, which occurred June 25, 1890, was the owner of a valuable
property. In his native county he married Amy Husbands. They were both
faithful members of the Christian Church, and in their family were the
following children: Mrs. Graff, O. J., F. M.; H. H., who died in the army in
1864; Ann A., widow of Christian Whistler; Adeline, wife of William Kelly,
and one daughter who died in infancy.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Graff were
born seven children: Harmon L., born September 20, 1856; Granville, January
13, 1859; Oliver, who was born November 23, 1860, and died April 21, 1890,
leaving a daughter, who resides with her grandfather; Adeline, who was born
December 29, 1862, and is the wife of Robert Redfield; Henry, born January
22, 1866; Dora, who was born April 8, 1870, and died April 24, 1873; and
Samuel W., who died in infancy.
Since voting for John C. Fremont in
1856, Mr. Graff has been a stalwart supporter of the men and measures of the
Republican party. For fifteen years in early life he was a member of the
Baptist Church, after which he united with the Christian Church at Pleasant
Hill. He has been an Elder in the same for several years, and his wife is
also one of its faithful members and active workers. When this worthy couple
began their domestic life they resided in Levan Township, where our subject
improved a good farm. In 1870 he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of
land on section 20, Ora Township, and has since made their home thereon. He
placed his farm under a high state of cultivation and stocked it with a high
grade of horses, cattle and hogs. He is now practically living retired,
being surrounded by all the comforts of life, which were secured to him by
his labor in former years. His career has been an honorable and upright one
and he has the respect of all.
Extracted 28 Aug 2019 by Norma Hass from 1894 Biographical Review of Jackson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, pages 566-569.