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Champaign County, Illinois

Lineages - Willard Family

Submitted by Georgia McCartney

My father, Franklin Dora Willard, bought this farm and moved here after he left the old homestead and farm owned by my grandfather Charles Willard, Sr. This is my family. Their picture was taken before my birth. People in this picture from left to right are: Dora Willard (Silver), Irwin Willard "Bud," my mother's father Arthur Wade, Hazel Willard (Raup), Charles H. Willard, Jr., Franklin Glen Willard, my mother Lydia Wade (Willard), my father Frank D. Willard, Harold B. Willard and Agnes Willard (Werts).

My grandfather Arthur Wade was a very religious person and very much committed to astronomy. He was a teacher and taught astronomy at Ohio State University before his marriage. After my grandmother's death, he spent most of his time in my mother's home and his other daughter Estella Wade (Davis). The story goes that he would set his watch by the sun and walk to Urbana to check the clock on the courthouse to see how accurate he was. My father said he wasn't good at farming. If he was plowing in the field he was so engrossed with his astronomy and religion he just might go the wrong way across the field. He wrote a book, "My Dream of the Kingdom," which was published in 1912. My memory of him when I was a small child was to go to the meadow and pick clovers which he made into clover tea. He and I would have clover tea with my mother's cookies. -- Frances Willard (McCartney)

This picture was taken the same day as the picture that was taken of my parents' large white house. The picture was taken in the house lot behind the big home. People from the left: Irwin "Bud", Dora, Hazel, Agnes, Glen, Charles, Harold, my mother and father.

The horse hitched to the wagon was named Shiner. This animal was with the family a long time. The horse standing by my father was my older brother's, "Bud," race horse. His name was Steck.

My father had a great sense of humor. When I was a small child he told me that on New Year's Eve at 12:00 old Shiner went down on his knees to pray and I believed him. I tried to stay awake thinking my father would take me to the barn so I could see old Shiner fall to his knees but I never stayed awake that long. The story goes that my three older sisters who were in high school, their transportation was the wagon and Shiner in the picture. One day they were on their way to school and it was raining. Dora put up the umbrella, Hazel was driving. Old Shiner looked sideways and saw the umbrella and took off in a dead run. Hazel was calling to Dora to put the umbrella down but it wouldn't go down. Each time Shiner turned to look back he became scared and ran all the faster. That was the fastest ride my sisters ever had. -- Frances Willard (McCartney)

This home was built around the time of the Civil War by my grandfather Charles Henry Willard, Sr. who was born in 1820. The family pictured here lived in this home a very short time. My grandfather lived here also right after he built this home. My father Franklin Dora Willard who was born in 1870 lived in their home many years and several of his children were born here. The people in this picture are unknown to me. After my parents left this home my Uncle Arthur Willard moved here and raised his family. After my grandfather's death this farm was left to my uncle. When he moved to California, my father bought this farm. My father moved his son, my brother Charles Henry Willard, Jr. on this farm. After my father's death which was during the depression the farm was auctioned off and bought by H. I. Green, a prominent lawyer here in Urbana. However, my brother farmed this farm until his retirement in 1971. -- Frances Willard (McCartney)


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