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HORTON, Rev. Samuel T. - 1890 Bio (1833-1904)


Posted By: Joey Stark
Date: 8/10/2007 at 19:36:13

Portrait and Biographical Album of Jefferson and Van Buren Counties, Iowa, Printed 1890 by Lake City Publishing Co., Chicago
Pages 432-433

Samuel T. HORTON is the oldest living settler of Lockridge Township, Jefferson County, his home being on section 27. In his work as a local minister of the Free Methodist Church he has become widely known throughout the surrounding country, and wins the friendship of all with whom he comes in contact. A life of uprightness, devoted to the interests of humanity, has made him a honored (sic) citizen of the community, and when he shall have passed away his memory will remain as a potent influence for good.

Mr. HORTON was born in Morgan County, Ill., September 17, 1833, and is a son of Urias and Sarah HORTON. His father was born in Virginia, October 5, 1800, and in his youth removed to Kentucky, where he became acquainted with and married Miss Sarah BERRY. Soon afterward, in 1826, they became residents of Morgan County, Ill., where Mr. HORTON located land and developed a farm. In 1839 he crossed the Father of Waters into the Territory of Iowa, and made a location near Salina, in Lockridge Township. He entered land a half-mile west of Salina, and began transforming it into a farm, the entire one hundred and twenty acres being in its primitive condition. Not a furrow had been turned or an improvement made, and the land had to be cleared before plowing was done, but with characteristic energy and perseverance Mr. HORTON began his task, which he continued until 1844. He then removed to an eighty-acre farm northeast of Salina, upon which the only improvement was a log cabin. The excitement and newness of pioneer life seemed to have an attraction for him, and he succeeded admirably in his efforts to develop the wild prairie into productive farms. The one on which he located in 1844 continued to be the home of himself and wife until they were called to their final home. Mr. HORTON died in 1884, and his wife passed away in 1876. They are numbered among the very earliest of Jefferson County's pioneers. They were familiar with all the hardships and privations of frontier life, such as going long distances to market and mill, doing their farm work with with oxen and rude agricultural implements, living in crowded quarters with furniture of their own manufacture, and having the wily red men for neighbors.

While Mr. and Mrs. HORTON were residing in Illinois, six sons were born unto them, as follows: Benjamin, who died at the age of eighteen years; Joseph, now of Missouri, who served during the war in the Thirtieth Iowa Regiment, and was wounded in the arm; Samuel, of this sketch; John, who was a member of the Second Iowa Infantry, and was wounded in the leg, is now a Methodist minister belonging to the Kansas Conference; George W., deceased, was Captain of a company of the Eighty-fourth Illinois Regiment; and Isaac Newton is living on the old homestead. After coming to Iowa the family circle was increased by the birth of three daughters -- Mary J., Sarah E. and Annie, but all are now deceased.

Urias HORTON was an exemplary citizen, one who in a quiet and unostentatious, yet faithful manner, performed every duty devolving upon him. He supported the Democratic party in politics, and in early life united with the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, but later accepted the doctrines of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and remained a consistent member until his death.

Samuel T. HORTON has spent almost his entire life in Jefferson County. He was a lad of but six summers when his parents settled upon the farm near Salina, where he grew to manhood. He had taste for clearing land, and became an expert rail splitter, beating the record of Lincoln by making five thousand rails in one winter. He began his education in the subscription schools of that early day, which was followed by a few terms attenance at the public schools, but his knowledge there gained has been largely supplemented by extensive reading and study, making him one of the best informed men of his township. He remained at home until twenty-three years of age, when he married Miss Gincy CRENSHAW, a native of Illinois.

The young couple began their domestic life in a log cabin in the midst of a forty-acre tract of timber land, and their place of residence has never changed, although the dwelling has undergone a transformation. Many changes have also been wrought on the farm, its boundaries have been extended until it now comprises one hundred and fifteen acres, this has been divided into fields, and a glance tells the passer-by of unremitting toil and of the thrift and enterprise of the owner. In 1867 he was licensed to preach, and has had charge of several circuits. His labors have extended over portions of Henry, Van Buren and the whole of Jefferson County. He has often been solicited to accept a charge, but preferred to be free to go wherever he believed his services were most needed. He has probably preached more funerals and married more people than any man in the county.

In 1864, Mr. HORTON was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife. Three children had been born of their union, but two died ere the mother's death, the three dying in one week. The surviving daughter is Laura, wife of Marshall CHILCOTT, of Osborn County, Kan. He afterward married Miss Eleanor CRENSHAW, and unto them have been born four sons and three daughters -- Nancy O., born November 18, 1865, is the wife of the Rev. I. H. GORRELL, now of Burlington, Iowa; Ida, who is living in Burlington; Mattie, Frank F., George W., Henry and Ervy Esta, all at home.

The work which Mr. HORTON has accomplished for his own church cannot be estimated, for he has labored long and earnestly in its interests. He is a fluent talker, expresses his thoughts with feeling and force, and has the power of drawing others to himself by words of kindness and deeds of charity and love, which convinces them that his religion is not a mere myth, but a part of his life. For eight years he has been Superintendent of the Sunday school, and labors in all branches of church work. Like him, his wife delights in doing good, and is highly esteemed for her many excellencies of head and heart. In politics, he was first a Democrat, but most of the time has been independent, voting for those candidates who supported Prohibition principles. In 1884, he voted for St. John, the Prohibition candidate. Since that time he as been a stalwart supporter of the party. He served acceptably as Justice of the Peace for eight years, and is now Notary Public.

*Transcribed for genealogy purposes; I have no relation to the person(s) mentioned.


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