This information is part of the Champaign County ILGenWeb Project. If you have reached this site by means other than The USGenWeb Project, The ILGenWeb Project, or directly, please visit the main Champaign Co, ILGenWeb site for more information regarding Champaign County, IL ancestors. Information contained here was transcribed by Celia Snyder. Please do not repost this information without the express written permission of Celia Snyder.

Champaign County, Illinois

Biography of Abraham D. Cross

SOURCE: "Portrait and Biographical Album of Champaign County, Illinois," Chapman Brothers, Chicago, 1887


ABRAHAM D. CROSS, Postmaster at Rantoul, is the stanch representative of an excellent Pennsylvania family, of English descent, and was himself born near Danville, in Lyncoming County, in November, 1830. His parents were Joseph and Mary A. (DAVIS) CROSS; the former was born in England, and the latter in Wales. They emigrated to this country in their youth and after their marriage settled on a farm in Lycoming County, Pa. The quiet of their rural life was interrupted, however, by the wars with Texas and Mexico, in which Joseph Cross served as a Federal soldier, and as he never returned from the battle-field was supposed to have been killed. His widow was left with four children, two sons and two daughters, of whom our subject was the eldest. She afterward married again and the children were subsequently scattered.

Upon leaving his mother's home our subject drifted to the city of Philadelphia, where he learned the carpenter's trade and from which place, in 1856, he came to the West. Soon after reaching the borders of Illinois, he concluded to take up his abode in Rantoul and commenced operating as a builder and contractor. He was afterward made conductor of a train, and subsequently, in connection with Harvey E. Bullock, distinguished himself as one of the publishers of the Rantoul News, with which he remained connected from 1874 to 1877. He again returned to the road and was conductor on the Nickel Plate Road, running from Ft. Wayne, Ind., to Belleview, and on the Cleveland and Marietta from Cleveland to Valley Junction. He was appointed Postmaster in June, 1885, the duties of which office he has since performed with credit to himself and satisfaction to those who recommended him. He gives his whole time and attention to the duties of the office and has effected some admirable charges in the management. He has been a lifelong Democrat, always in good standing with his party, and as an attendant of the Episcopal Church, to which the various members of his family belong.

Over thirty-five years ago, in November, 1851, Mr. Cross was married to Miss Martha JACOBY, the ceremony being performed in the Episcopal Church in the town of Andalusia, Pa. The wife of our subject is the daughter of John and Elizabeth JACOBY, of Bloomsburg, Pa., and of this congenial union there have been born eight children. Of these but four are now living: George S., Lillian E., now the wife of O. J. DOWNEY, editor of the Potomac (Vermilion County) News; Frank Raymond, Assistant Postmaster, and Ruth D.

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