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Below is a family biography included in The History of McLean County, Illinois published by Wm. LeBaron, Jr. Co. in 1879.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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J. SLAGEL (of the firm of Slagel & Peters), blacksmith, Heyworth; was born on his father’s farm in Randolph Co., Va., March 8, 1830, where he lived eighteen years; he then went to Harper’s Mill, in Pendleton Co., Va., where he was apprenticed to the trade of a blacksmith with Jacob W. Harper, and remained six years, during which time, on April 17, 1851, he married Miss Huldah Raines, of Pendleton Co., Va., and by whom he has had ten children, six of whom are now living, viz., Martha E., Mary Susan, Noah W., Charlie, Minnie and George J. In 1854, he moved to Coles Co., Ill., where he lived until 1857, when he came to Heyworth and engaged in his present business; beginning in a small way, he gradually kept increasing the business, and, in 1871, he took Mr. J. Peters as a partner; the business flourished under the management of the firm, and besides a horse-power engine, they added several improved machines to facilitate the work in their carriage and wagon manufactory, and later they added a feed and meal mill; in 1872, when the depression that followed was beginning to be felt, the firm began to curtail the business, believing such course better than to have a stock of goods on hand made under the disadvantage of former high prices; the working force was reduced and the stock on hand disposed of, and no new stock was made except on orders; the capital arising from the sale of the stock was placed in good and marketable real estate, so that when the depression became general and severe, though the firm experienced a great falling off in trade and shrinkage of values, they were in no wise embarrassed by the change.

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This family biography is one of 1257 biographies included in The History of McLean County, Illinois published by Wm. LeBaron, Jr. Co. in 1879.  View the complete description here: The History of McLean County, Illinois

View additional McLean County, Illinois family biographies here: McLean County, Illinois Biographies

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