In later years the record of the earlier residents of Jo Daviess County will be of fully as much value as at the present. The children of a future generation will con these pages, looking for the names of their grandsire, and the tale of his labors and sacrifices will form an interesting story by many a winter's fireside. Among them that of our subject is worthy of more than a passing mention. In a few more seasons he will have reached his three-score years and ten, and his eyes have been permitted to behold the marvelous changes which have been wrought in the great Northwest and especially in this county. In effecting these he and his estimable wife have contributed their full share of labor, perseverance, and kindly deeds. They are numbered among the solid citizens of their community who have assisted in maintaining the standard of law and good order, and by their example have stimulated those around them to worthy and industrious lives.
John Wixson is a Pennsylvanian by birth, opening his eyes first in Lancaster County, May 10, 1823. The home of his parents lay in the rural districts, and he remained with them until a youth of eighteen years engaged in following the plow, sowing and reaping; and acquiring what education he could in the district schools. At that time, with a natural desire of youth for change, he left the farm and entered upon an apprenticeship at the trade of stone-mason. He became master of this and followed it in thirteen different States thereafter, until in November, 1855, when he emigrated to this county and purchased ninety-two acres of land in Woodbine Township. This he occupied with his family until the spring of 1882, when he sold out and purchased that which he now owns on section 36 in Rush Township. Here he has 1011/2 acres upon which he has erected good buildings and effected many other improvements naturally suggested to the intelligent agriculturist. He followed his trade considerably after coming to Illinois until 1882, since which time he has practically abandoned it.
n the township of Chippewa, Wayne County, Ohio, occurred the marriage of John Wixson and Miss Eliza Crawford, April 23, 1846. This lady traces her ancestry to Scotland and she, herself was born in Ayrshire, the land of the thistle, Oct. 11, 1828. Her parents emigrated to Nova Scotia when she was a little child three years of age, and removed thence to Wayne County, in 1842. Her father, William Crawford, was a farmer by occupation, and possessed all the substantial traits of his honorable Scotch ancestry. The mother in her girlhood was Miss Margaret McCole. Their household consisted of ten children, five of whom are living, and residents mostly of Jo Daviess County. The parents are deceased.
Mr. and Mrs. Wixson began their wedded life together in Ohio, and there came to their fireside eleven bright children, with four of whom they were called to part from in their childhood. The survivors are grown and some of them have fled from the home nest. Margaret C. is the wife of John Roberts, and lives in Rush Township; Eliza J. married R. A. Miller, who is occupied as mail-carrier in Illinois; John J. is farming in Rush Township -he married Miss Almira L. Momenteller; Mary A. is at home; Sarah C. is the wife of Joseph H. Wiley, of Pleasant Valley, this county; Henry H. and Edward C. are at home with their parents. The deceased children were named William C., William J., Francis L., and Martha E.
Mr. and Mrs. Wixson identified themselves with the Methodist Episcopal Church about 1850; Mr. W. has officiated as Steward; and they have contributed cheerfully and liberally to its support. Our subject, politically, is an earnest Republican, and has filled the various school-offices. Mr. Wixson is a thorough and skillful farmer; admirably managing his department of the homestead, while his estimable wife performs her part in a no less worthy manner as the presiding genius of the household - to whose ways she looks well, keeping everything "shipshape," and making it a most comfortable and pleasant resort for all who sojourn under her roof.