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Fayette County Homes
A Brief History
The County Farm
~ source: History of Fayette County,  Western Historical Company, Chicago, 1878
Page 445-446

The county poor, previous to 1864, were provided for by temporary expedients. The young were bound out whenever possible, and the aged were boarded at various places, in their respective townships, at the expense of the county. In 1863, P. Dowse, D. Perrin and J. H. Ross were appointed a Committee on Poor, and the increase in the number of people who were becoming county charges led the Board, on June 3, to instruct said Committee to investigate the matter to see if expense could not be saved to the county. Pursuant to instructions, the Committee, on June 4, 1863, recommended that a committee be appointed to inquire into the expediency of providing the county with a poor house and farm, and to report to the Board at its September session. The committee were appointed as follows : D. Gr. Goodrich, E. Z. Stowe and H. B. Hoyt. The committee made their final report June 7, 1864, and, after a lengthy preamble, recommended the adoption of the following resolution:
Resolved, That a sum not exceeding two thousand dollars be and the same is hereby appropriated from the county funds of Fayette County, not otherwise appropriated, for the purpose of purchasing a suitable farm for the use of said county as a Poor Farm, and report at the next meeting of this Board.
This resolution was adopted, and the committee reported September 5, 1864, as follows:
Your committee appointed at your June session, 1864, to procure a Poor Farm for the use of Fayette County, beg leave to report that they hare procured a farm in Illyria Township, known as the " William Morris Farm," for the sum of two thousand dollars, the said farm to come into the possession of the county on the 1st day of October next

The location of the farm is as follows: South half of the southwest quarter of Section 9, and the north half of the northwest quarter of the northwest quarter of Section 16, Township 93, Range 7, being 142 acres, inclusive.

The committee also offered the following resolution:
Be it resolved and ordered by this Board, That a sum not exceeding two thousand dollars be appropriated from the county funds of Fayette County for the purpose of purchasing teams, implements, repairing and making additions to the house, etc.; and that the Committee on Poor Farm be authorized to expend so much thereof as may be necessary to put the said farm and Poor House in readiness to accommodate the poor of Fayette County the coming Winter.
D. G. Goodrich, } Committee
C. R. Bent, } Committee.
This report was accepted and the resolution adopted.

November, 15, 1864,- the committee reported that they had stocked the farm and employed Mr. L. M. Allen and wife as Stewards, at a salary of per year, and stated that they were ready to receive boarders. In 1865, there were twenty-one paupers cared for; and in 1868, the old farm becoming inadequate to meet the demands of the county, the Supervisors began to agitate the question of disposing of it and applying the proceeds toward the purchase of a new one. Accordingly, in June, 1868, D. B. Herriman bought the old farm for $2,000, and the Board purchased the east half of the northwest quarter of Section 6, Township 93, Range 8, containing 181.23 acres, at $5.50 per acre; the west quarter of the northwest quarter of Section 15, being ten acres of timber, at $20 per acre, and the west front half of the northwest quarter of Section 6, Township 93, Range 8, at $6.00 per acre. It was not improved, however, until 1869, when the house was built and William Moore engaged as Steward. The present (1878) Steward is A. Teats. The farm is in fine condition and a credit to the county. The present number of inmates is 26.

~transcribed and submitted by Constance

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