Biography - John Maurice Herbert

JOHN MAURICE HERBERT, A. M., LL. B., is one of Murphysboro's most prominent and influential citizens. He is the present State's Attorney, is Vice-President of the City National Bank, Vice-President of the Jackson County Abstract and Title Guarantee Company, and is a member of the law firm of Smith, McElvain & Herbert, one of the leading law firms of southern Illinois. By merit and ability he has arisen to the proud position which he now occupies and the success of his life is well deserved.

David Herbert, his father, was born near Lautwidd-Vardra, Wales, and was a son of Philip Herbert, who was of German descent, and who was a well-to-do merchant. The father engaged in the hotel business, and in 1865 emigrated to Pennsylvania. Going to Schuylkill County, he opened a large boarding house, and February 4, 1866, he came to this place and kept a boarding house at the Mt. Carbon depot. Later he bought the Laclede Hotel, which he carried on until October, 1892, and then sold out. At different times he purchased land, which he afterward sold. He was married December 5, 1854, to Margaret Humphrey, who was born in North Wales. Her family were farming people, and her father died in the Old Country in 1889. Mrs. Herbert had six children, two of whom are yet living, John M., of this sketch; and Philip D., a leading jeweler of Murphysboro.

Our subject was born in Glamorganshire, Wales, February 1, 1864, but was reared in this locality and was educated in its public schools. He also attended the normal school at Carbondale for eighteen months, after which he entered the freshman class in Christian Brothers College of St. Louis, from which he was graduated in 1886, with the degree of A. B. He was valedictorian of his class of ten pupils. In the succeeding autumn, he entered the law department of the University of Michigan, and was graduated with the degree of LL. B. He was here honored with being elected Vice-President of his class. In 1892 the degree of A. M. was conferred upon him by Christian Brothers College.

In 1888, Mr. Herbert formed the partnership with Mr. Smith, and in 1889 Mr. McElvain became a member of the firm. They conduct a general law practice and have justly won a place among the leading law firms of southern Illinois, being men of marked ability. Mr. Herbert is also interested in the Jackson County Abstract and Title Guarantee Company, aided in its organization, and has since been Vice-President. He aided in organizing the City National Bank, of which he is now a Director and Vice-President. He is attorney for the Southern Illinois Building and Loan Association, and in 1892 was elected State's Attorney on the Republican ticket by a majority of nearly four hundred. This was the largest majority given a Republican candidate, a fact which indicates his personal popularity and the high regard in which he is held.

The lady who bears the name of Mrs. Herbert was formerly Miss Tillie Bross, and was born in Cairo, Ill. She was educated in a convent in St. Louis and is a fine musician. She is a daughter of Judge F. Bross, the President of the National Bank of Cairo, and one of the best known men of the state. The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Herbert was celebrated in Cairo, September 28, 1893. Socially, our subject is a Knight Templar Mason and is the present Master of Murphysboro Lodge No. 498, A. F. &. A. M. He served as representative to the Grand Lodge in 1893. He also belongs to the Knights of Pythias and the uniformed rank, and is a member of the Illinois Bar Association. He is a young man whose talents have rapidly won for him a place of prominence and will continue to win for him promotion and success.

Extracted 28 Aug 2019 by Norma Hass from 1894 Biographical Review of Jackson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, pages 572-573.

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