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 Thomas Lindsey

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


was born July 8, 1820, at West Middletown, Washington county, Pennsylvania. His father was Thomas LINDSEY, his mother Permelia WILLIAMS. The subject of this sketch came to this county in November, 1841, and settled in Urbana—just after he became of age. He was married April 9, 1845, in Urbana, to Martha Ann BRUER, daughter of Asahel BRUER; she was born April 26, 1829, and is still living. She is well and hearty, and Mr. Lindsey declares she can do more work than any girl in the county. The children of this marriage were: William, now residing in Humboldt, Kansas; Permelia, who married W. S. MCWILLIAMS, residing at Fort Scott, Kansas; James and Charles, residing in Urbana; Laura Belle, who married James THORNTON, residing at Yellow springs, Ohio; George, and Thomas Edward, both of Urbana, all living. Mr. Lindsey, though not a member of any church, was raised and has always been a regular attendant on the Presbyterian church. Politically, he has been, and is now, a radical republican. He has never sought any office but has been school director pretty much all his natural life. He served an apprenticeship to the carpenter and cabinet maker’s trade in Pennsylvania. He followed the business here immediately upon his arrival and for twenty years he had the leading business in that line, in this city. To this he added the undertaking business. For many years he made all the coffins by hand, for this city and surrounding country. He charged $5.00 for the coffin and furnished everything else free. The Messrs. Harvey also dug the graves without charge, so that the funeral expenses cost but very little those days. When Samuel Brumley died, Mr. Lindsey made an extra fine coffin and covered it with velvet. The administrator objected to the cost which was twelve dollars, as being too extravagant and unnecessary. Mr. Lindsey supplied the whole county with furniture, made by hand, for many years, by laboring in his shop during the winter. Durint the summer months Mrs. Lindsey sold out the stock he had thus accumulated, while he was out working at the carpenter’s trade. When he came here, Charles Tiernan, father of Frank Tiernan, had the only store here. He relates an incident of attending the wedding of David Cantner, at the residence of T. R. Webber. He and others, during the night, tied a coon to a long pole and planted it in front of the house by way of celebrating the happy event, and T. R. Webber climbed the pole in the morning and cut it down. The evening Mr. Lindsey was married a rope was tied to the bell on top of the house and it was kept ringing all night.

Mr. Lindsey resides in peace and comfort on his splendidly improved farm, southwest of this city. His health for the past few years has not been so good as formerly. He spent last winter with his wife in Florida where he received great benefit, and will probably spend his winters there in future. It is to be hoped, however, that it may not be necessary to leave his pleasant home in search of health. For nearly half a century he has resided here and his many friends, secured by upright conduct and business integrity, sincerely wish for a much longer lease of life and prosperity.

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