Jackson County

Biography - James A. White

JAMES A. WHITE. A continuous service of virtually fifteen years in the office of postmaster of Murphysboro, Jackson county, offers effective voucher for the executive ability and personal popularity of James Augustus White. He is known as one of the broad-minded and progressive citizens of Murphysboro, the thriving and attractive metropolis and judicial center of Jackson county, and he has long been a potent factor in connection with political activities in this section of the state, where his circle of friends is limited only by that of his acquaintances.

James Augustus White was born at Fairfield, Jefferson county, Iowa, on the 25th of September, 1868, and is a son of James and Anna (Parkinson) White, both of whom are now deceased, the father having devoted the greater part of his active career to agricultural pursuits. He to whom this sketch is delivered was a child at the time of the family removal from Iowa to Southern Illinois, and he is indebted to the public schools of East St. Louis, this state, for his early educational discipline. As a youth he served an apprenticeship to the trade of machinist, in which he became a skilled workman and to which he devoted his attention from 1885 to 1897. He established his residence in Murphysboro in the year 1888, and here he continued to be actively identified with industrial enterprises in the line of his trade until 1897, when he was appointed to the office of postmaster, of which he has since continued the efficient and popular incumbent. His administration has been one of most progressive and circumspect order and he has done much to develop and systematize the work of the local postal service, in connection with which a corps of twelve assistants is retained, in addition to those connected with the seven rural free-delivery routes. Mr. White was indefatigable in his efforts to secure the appropriation of eighty-five thousand dollars for the new postoffice building in Murphysboro, and none exerted more influence in this connection except the congressman from this district. Mr. White also served one term 1894-6 as representative of the Third ward in the city board of aldermen.

In politics Mr. White has ever accorded unfaltering allegiance to the Republican party and he has been a zealous and effective worker in behalf of its cause. He was a member of the Republican state central committee of Illinois in 1910 and has served continuously since 1903 as chairman of the Republican central committee of Jackson county. He is affiliated with the local lodge and chapter of the Masonic fraternity and is past master of the former, besides which he holds membership in the Knights of Pythias, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and the Modern Woodmen of America. Both he and his wife are members of the Presbyterian church. Murphysboro 's postmaster shows a most loyal interest in all that touches the welfare and progress of his home city and his aid and influence as given to those measures and enterprises which tend to advance civic and material progress and prosperity.

Extracted 15 Jan 2018 by Norma Hass from 1912 A History of Southern Illinois, volume 2, pages 1008-1009.

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