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 Isaac Turner

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


, who has recently removed to Gifford, was for many years actively identified with the agricultural interests of Champaign, and by the development and improvement of a good farm in Compromise township he has materially advanced the welfare of this locality.  He was born near Cadiz, Harrison county, Ohio, February 6, 1830, and is a son of Joab and Ara (JOHNSON) TURNER, natives of Maryland and Ohio, respectively.  The father died on his farm in the Buckeye state at the age of seventy-three years, and the mother departed this life at the home of our subject, in Compromise township, Champaign county, Illinois in 1875, at the age of sixty-nine.  In their family were ten children, of whom five sons are still living, namely:  Johnson, a farmer of Fayette County, Illinois; Aaron, a farmer of Holmes county, Ohio;  William, a coal miner of Ohio; James W., who was in the Union army during the Civil war for one hundred days, and is now a farmer of Jasper county, Indianan; and Isaac, our subject.

When our subject was only four years old the family removed to Coshocton county, Ohio, where he was reared upon the home farm and where he continued to make his home until twenty-one years of age, his education being obtained in the district and common schools of that locality.  Leaving home at the age of twenty-one, he worked on different farms near there for five years.

On the 8th of November, 1855, Mr. Turner was married in Roscoe, Ohio, to Miss Rachel WILLIAMS, a daughter of Lewis B. and Rebecca (MCCOY) WILLIAMS, in whose family were five children, three children living, one and two daughters.  Another son, Levi Williams, was a member of the Fifty-first Ohio Volunteer Infantry during the Civil War, and was killed at the battle of Pea Ridge at the age of eighteen years.  The father spent his entire life in Ohio, being engaged in farming in Coshocton county, where he died in 1857.  His wife had died when Mrs. Turner was quite small.  After her father’s death she went to live with her paternal grandparents, James and Rachel (BARDELL) WILLIAMS, with whom  she made her home until after her marriage, their farm being operated by our subject for some time.  He finally purchased the place and he and his wife cared for the old people during the remainder of their lives, the grandmother dying September 7, 1857, the grandfather in the spring of 1858.

During the first nine years of their married life Mr. and Mrs. Turner continued to make their home in Coshocton county, Ohio, but at the end of that time they sold their farm and came to Illinois, locating first in Carroll township, Vermilion county, where he purchased land.  In 1870, however, they came to Champaign county, where they have since made their home.  Until the spring of 1900 Mr. Turner was successfully engaged in farming in Compromise township, where he still owns a good farm of one hundred and eighty acres, all under cultivation and improved with good buildings.  He is a thorough and systematic agriculturist, is energetic and progressive, and has met with well-deserved success in his labors.  He purchased the A. P. Johnson property in Gifford, and now makes that village his home.  AS a public-spirited and enterprising citizen, he has ever taken an active interest in local affairs, and does all in his power to advance the welfare of his town and county.  He has served as township treasurer for about twenty-two years; in 1878 was elected assessor and held that office for two years; and at the end of that time was elected supervisor of his township, all of which positions he most capably and satisfactorily filled.  Religiously he is a member of the Methodist church.

To Mr. and Mrs. Turner were born eleven children, namely: (1) Lewis, born in Coshocton county, Ohio, December 7, 1856, remained at home until twenty one years of age, and is now a prosperous farmer of Hamilton county, Illinois.  He married Nora RHUBOTTOM; (2) Harvey J., born in Ohio, May 31, 1858, married Jennie CRAIGMILE, of Lagrange, Illinois, and is now engaged in mercantile business in Gifford.  They have four children, Bessie, Alexander, James and Jean.  (3) Paulina, born in Ohio, March 29, 1860, is at home.  (4) Sarah S., born October 4, 1861, is the wife of John CRAIGMILE, a farmer of Calhoun county, Iowa, and they have four children, Iva, Charles, Pearl and Bernice.   (5) Aaron B., born September 27, 1863, is a farmer of Waren county, Indiana.  He married Armanda WALKER, of Gifford, Illinois, and they have one child, Walker.  (6) Emma J., born in Vermilion county, Illinois, October 13, 1865, is the wife of William PIPER, a farmer of Medaryville, Indiana, and they have five children:  Isaac; Henry, deceased; Ethel; Dwight and Horace.  (7) William C., born in Vermilion county, June 24, 1868, rents his father’s farm in Compromise township, Champaign county.  He married Stella KEYES and has one child, Harley.  (8) Ida M., born in Compromise township, September 3, 1870, died October 29, 1871.  (9) Ina F., born March 30, 1873, is at home.  (10) James H. born March 14, 1875, was a telegraph operator for the Illinois Central railroad at Delana, Illinois, but is now at home.  (11)  Elisha, born May 25, 1878, is at home.

Return to Links Page

Return to Main Page