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Below is a family biography included in The Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois published by Biographical Publishing Co. in 1894.  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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JOHN HEIDGER, who is engaged in the hotel and saloon business in Harrisonville has the honor of being a native of Monroe County. He was born August 3, 1844, to the union of John and Maggie (Weber) Heidger, who were natives of Germany. Their family numbered seven children, of whom three are yet living: Mathias, Mary and John. The parents were reared and educated in Germany, and there the father learned the trade of blacksmithing. In 1843 they crossed the Atlantic to America, and came direct to Monroe County. Mr. Heidger purchased one hundred acres of land near Waterloo and carried on farming and blacksmithing until his death, which occurred at the advanced age of eighty-one. His wife died near Madonnaville, at the age of thirty-three years. They were both members of the Catholic Church. In politics he was a supporter of the Democracy.

In the usual manner of farmer lads, John Heidger spent the days of his boyhood and youth, and in the common schools acquired a good education. He remained under the parental roof until seventeen years of age, when, on the 16th of September, 1861, he enlisted in the country’s service as a member of Company H. Forty-ninth Illinois Infantry. He participated in a number of important engagements, including the battles of Ft. Donelson, Shiloh, siege of Corinth, Little Rock, Ft. De Ruse, Pleasant Hill, Yellow Bayou, Meridian, Tupelo and Price’s last raid through Missouri in 1864. After the expiration of his three years and three months’ service, he was honorably discharged in Springfield, November 19, 1864.

Mr. Heidger at once returned to his home in Monroe County, and continued to work for his father upon the home farm until twenty-five years of age. He was then united in marriage with Miss Henrietta Kohler, a native of Monroe County, and to them were born two children, of whom one is yet living, John P. The wife and mother, who was a consistent member of the Catholic Church, died at the early age of twenty years, and her loss was deeply mourned. Mr. Heidger has been again married, his second union being with Lizzie Notter, who was born, reared and educated in Monroe County. They had two children, but both are now deceased, and the mother died at the age of twenty-two years. The lady who now bears the name of Mrs. Heidger was in her maidenhood Mary A. F. Notter, and she too is a native of Monroe County. Eight children graced this union, of whom six are yet living: Cecelia C., Armin S. W., Hugo J., Mollie N., Etna F. and Herbert N. Mrs. Heidger is a representative of one of the earliest families of this county, her parents having here located in 1839, when the entire community was in a wild and unimproved state, and the work of civilization and progress seemed scarcely begun.

Our subject is recognized as one of the successful and progressive farmers of the neighborhood. In 1869 he purchased seventy acres of land, and has since extended the boundaries of his farm, until it now comprises three hundred and thirty acres of the rich land of the Mississippi Valley. His farm is under a high state of cultivation and is well improved with all modern accessories and conveniences. In connection with this property, he owns real estate in town, including the hotel and saloon which he is now conducting. He has been a hard worker through life, and being an excellent financier, and possessing good business and executive ability, he has acquired a handsome competence. In politics, he is a Democrat, and from 1883 to 1888 held the office of Drainage Commissioner of the Moredock and Ivy Landing Drainage District, No. 1. Both he and his wife are members of the Catholic Church, and are highly respected citizens, who occupy an enviable position in social circles, and well deserve representation in this work.

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This family biography is one of 679 biographies included in The Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois published in 1894.  View the complete description here: The Portrait and Biographical Record of Randolph, Jackson, Perry and Monroe Counties, Illinois

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

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