J. H. WARD, one of the leading business men of Du Quoin, is a member of the well known firm of Ward & brother, and is a stock-holder and director in the First National Bank. His active business life has won him a position of prominence, and it is with pleasure that we present to our readers this record of his career. A native of Connecticut, he was born in New Haven, August 4, 1847, and is a son of Henry Ward, who was born in New Haven in 1819. The father was a carpenter and builder, and aided in the erection of the first building in which Seth Thomas made his famous clocks. At length he came to the west, locating in Williamson County, Ill., whence he removed to Carbondale, Jackson County. He is now a resident of Du Quoin.
J. H. Ward had fair educational advantages in his youth, and was thus fitted for the practical duties of life. Soon after the close of the war he went on the road as a salesman, traveling for two years in Iowa, and one year in Texas and Indian Territory. He then engaged in the butchering and grocery business in Carbondale, and subsequently was a dealer in men's clothing at that place. About 1873 he came to Du Quoin, where in connection with his brother, W. D., he engaged in the livery and stock business, to which he has since devoted his energies. They have become the largest stock shippers in this section of the state, and have accumulated a handsome fortune along this line. They have also done an extensive livery business, and are the owners of the large brick building in which they carry on this enterprise, together with other business property — a thousand acres of farming land, several residences which they rent, and some valuable real estate in Carbondale. On their farm they have a large number of blooded cattle and horses. Our subject is also one of the incorporators of the First National Bank, and is one of its stockholders and directors.
In May, 1875, Mr. Ward wedded Miss Cephise Slawson, who was born in New Orleans, and was a daughter of Hiram Slawson, a native of New York. The latter was the nephew of Joseph Slawson, the street car inventor, who died in New York City worth half a million. He served as foreman of his uncle's works in New Orleans. Mr. and Mrs. Ward have but one child, Hiram H., sixteen years of age.
Socially, Mr. Ward is a Royal Arch Mason, and in politics has been a life-long Democrat. He was elected a member of the County Board of Commissioners in 1887, and served for three years. He has also been twice elected to the Board of Aldermen of Du Quoin, and is one of the stockholders and directors in the Du Quoin Building and Loan Association. He started out in life for himself with no capital, but has steadily worked his way upward and is now numbered among the substantial citizens of Perry County.
W. D. Ward, who is the senior member of the firm of Ward & Brother, was born in Litchfield, Conn., in January, 1848, and came with his parents to the west. When he started out on his business career, he became a dry-goods merchant of Carbondale, but after a short time he sold his store and removed to Du Quoin, where he has since been associated with his brother in all of the business and property interests before mentioned. In the family were five brothers and one sister, but the latter, Elraira, died at the age of eighteen years, and John died at the age of six. Another brother, George F. M., is an extensive clothing dealer of Mt. Vernon, Ill., and Samuel is in the clothing business in Murphysboro. W. D. Ward was united in marriage with Elizabeth, daughter of Jefferson Snider, of Carbondale, and to them were born four children, two of whom are living. Snider aged twelve, and Myrtle, three years of age. Mr. Ward is an Odd Fellow, and like his brother has alwa3's been a Democrat, but his time has been so largely taken up by business interests that he has never concerned himself greatly in political matters.
Extracted from Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois, published in 1894, page 249.
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