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 Ruth Ryan. Please do not repost this information without the express written permission of Celia Snyder.

Champaign County, Illinois

Biography of Thomas W. McHugh

SOURCE: The Biographical Record of Champaign County, Illinois, The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1900


is one of the most respected citizens of Urbana, and his ability and entire trustworthiness have frequently been recognized by his acquaintances and friends, who have called upon him to officiate in local positions of responsibility.

He is a grandson of Jesse and Elizabeth (WHITAKER) MCHUGH, who were natives of Pennsylvania, and is one of the ten children of William and Catherine (STANSBURY) MCHUGH, who were natives of Virginia and New Jersey, respectively.  The father, who was a farmer by occupation, removed to Ohio and later to Indiana, and the farm which he purchased there, in 1840, now is in the heart of the Adams county oil region.  He died while on a visit to his son, Dr. McHugh, of Farmer City, Illinois, June 20, 1854, when in his fifty-second year.  Both he and his wife were members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and were loved and honored by all who knew them.

Of their ten children, six have passed to the better land.  Mary Ann, deceased, was the wife of Samuel FOSTER, who died November 6, 1899, aged eighty-six years.  Dr. John MCHUGH, who died at the age of fifty-five years, in 1870, at Independence, Kansas, was a graduate of Rush Medical College, of Chicago, and for twenty years was engaged in practice in Farmer City, Clinton and Mahomet, Illinois, Waterloo, and Independence, Iowa.  Arthur E., who was provost marshal at Fort Dodge, Iowa, for several years during the Civil war, died in Texas when fifty-five years of age.  Catherine died in infancy.  Elizabeth, widow of Emanuel CONKLE, resides at Holt, Michigan.  Susan, who was the wife of Ezekiel ROWLETT, died when about forty-five years old.  Dr. Charles Wesley is engaged in the practice of medicine in Sedan, Kansas.  Rev. Henry B., also of Kansas, is a minister of the United Brethren church, and has served as a presiding elder.  Lyman, the youngest, died at the age of seven years.

T. W. McHugh was born May 21, 1838, and, owing to the fact that he has not had the use of his limbs for about forty-six years, he received his education chiefly at home.  He was gifted with an exceptionally keen mind, and in his early manhood he taught schools in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana, meeting with success.  In the meantime, he read law with private tutors, and later studied in the office of William D. Summers.  In 1865 he was admitted to the bar of Champaign county, and has continued in practice ever since.  In 1868, he was elected justice of the peace, and at the expiration of each term of four years he has been re-elected to the office.  He has married five hundred and twenty-six couples, and may boast that very few of the number have sought legal separation thereafter.  For thirteen consecutive years he served as township collector, and in April, 1988, he was elected to the important post of city attorney.  Politically, he is a Republican, and is proud of what the party has accomplished for the country during the days it has been power.

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Mr. McHugh and Lydia S. MCKINNEY were married in Urbana, April 4, 1867.  She is a daughter of John and Betsey MCKINNEY, natives of New York and Canada, respectively.  The father died in 1855, and the mother later became the wife of Daniel Davidson, whose death occurred about two years subsequently, in 1865.  She afterward married William Gill, of Urbana, and both are deceased, Mrs. Gill dying in May, 1884, when sixty-two years of age.  She was the mother of five children, of whom Mrs. McHugh, born November 29, 1845, was the eldest.  Frances, the second, died in 1889, unmarried.  Jennie is the wife of C. E. MOTT, of Tazewell county, this state, and their children are Estella, Chester and Eva.  James, twin brother of Jennie, is the fourth, and Caroline is the youngest of the McKinney family.  Mr. and Mrs. McHugh have two children, namely:  George B., an attorney, now living at Beaumont, Texas, and Edith, wife of Oloff ATKINSON, of Rock Island, Illinois.  George B. married Eleanor PENNOCK, of Toledo, Ohio.  Mr. and Mrs. McHugh have two grandchildren, Lillian Fay and Marion Atkinson, aged five and two years, respectively.  Religiously, our subject and wife are Universalists, and are member of the Urbana church.