Richland County

Biography - George D. Morrison

The biographer is glad to herein set forth the salient facts in the eminently successful and honorable career of the well-remembered and highly esteemed citizen of Richland county whose name appears above, the last chapter in whose life record has been closed by the hand of death, and the seal set thereon forever, but whose influence still pervades the lives of those with whom he came in contact. For many years he was closely identified with the industrial development of the county, and aided in every way possible in promoting the general good of the community.

George D. Morrison was born at Zanesville, Ohio, April 1, 1832, the son of George W. and Rebecca (Potter) Morrison, the former a native of Loudoun county, Virginia, the latter of Maryland. During his earlier years, the subject's father was a freighter, keeping numerous teams and transporting merchandise from Boston and other Eastern markets to the interior before the days of railroads. He was a soldier in the War of 1812, and was severely wounded, suffering from the wound for a number of years, rendering finally the amputation of his limb a necessity. After his marriage he moved to Ohio and for several years engaged in the hotel business. Later he came to Richland county, and died in Olney when about eighty years of age, his wife having died a few months previous at a ripe old age. They were the parents of twelve children. Four of their sons were soldiers in the Civil war, and five of their sons were ministers of the Gospel. One of their sons started east from Ohio in the early days with a load of supplies but was never heard from afterwards. The six-horse team and wagon of supplies all mysteriously disappeared in the wilderness. Foul play by bandits or the Indians was suspected. Our subject was the ninth in order of birth. He was reared in Ohio where he received a good common school education, and after removing to Illinois attended an advanced school at Evanston, Illinois. He became clerk in a store. About 1855 he came to Olney and followed clerking for a time. He later established a dry goods store just before the outbreak of the Civil war. His health beginning to fail he sold out and served one term as Circuit Clerk of Richland county, giving entire satisfaction in this capacity. He was elected County Treasurer and died during his incumbency of this office in 1873, at the age of forty-one years. He was married in 1860 to Kate Snyder, a native of Lawrence county, Illinois, the daughter of John and Clarissa (Spencer) Snyder. They were natives of Kentucky, where they were reared and where they were married, and in an early day emigrated to Lawrence county, Illinois. Soon afterward in 1838, they came to what is now Richland county, and located on a farm in Claremont township, for years known as Hickory Point. This farm was entered from the government by the father of John Snyder, who was among the first settlers of what is now Richland county. Samuel Snyder was the subject's grandfather. He was a native of Pennsylvania, was reared in Kentucky and moved from Rockport, Indiana, to Illinois. One of his sons, Maurice B. Snyder, was Circuit Clerk after the organization of Richland county, for a number of years. Grandfather Spencer was a native of Virginia, and he moved to Kentucky in an early day. Both the subject's grandfathers served in the War of 1812. Three of grandfather Spencer's sons were in the War of 1812, also in the Black Hawk war. Spencer county, Indiana, was named in honor of this family.

John Snyder, father of Mrs. Morrison, was a farmer during his lifetime and improved a fine farm in Claremont township, where he died at the age of fifty-seven years in 1861. His wife survived several years and died at the home of her daughter at Poplar Bluff, Missouri, at the advanced age of eighty-three years. She was the mother of five children, four of whom are still living. Her only son, John Snyder, was a soldier in the Civil war, having enlisted as soon as old enough, in the Seventh Illinois Cavalry. He was in many engagements, and his health was impaired while in the service. He now lives in Douglas county, Missouri.

Mrs. Morrison is the mother of three children: Mary, the wife of J. F. Jolly, of Olney; Mattie, wife of J. L. Clevlen, of Poplar Bluff, Missouri; Kate, the wife of E. A. Powers, of Olney. Mrs. Morrison makes her home with her children, spending most of her time in Olney. She is one of the oldest residents of the county now living. Her life has been one of the usual hardship and pleasure, of victory and defeat, but lived in such a manner as to result in no harm to others, as was also that of her worthy husband, both being faultless in honor, fearless in conduct and stainless in reputation, commanding the uniform regard and esteem of their many friends.

Extracted 26 Apr 2017 by Norma Hass from 1909 Biographical and Reminiscent History of Richland, Clay and Marion Counties, Illinois, pages 137-139.

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