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Below is a family biography included in The History of Adams County, Illinois published by Murray, Williamson & Phelps 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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DISTIN, W. L., wholesale egg and butter merchant, 17-19 South Sixth street; born in Cincinnati in 1843; moved to Keokuk, Iowa, in 1857, and was connected with the Des Moines Valley Railroad until 1863, when he enlisted in the 17th Regt. Iowa Inf., Co. C. He was captured at Tilton, Ga., Oct. 15, 1864, and confined in Andersonville prison for six months, when he succeeded in bribing an official of the prison and made his escape. He was mustered out at Davenport, 1865. He then went as express messenger on the Wabash Railroad, and took charge of the Keokuk branch of the express business. He commenced his present business in 1866, in Clayton, Ill., and in 1873 started a house in this city. He ran the business in Clayton until 1874. In 1875 he formed a co partnership with Mr. Pond, under the firm name of Pond, Distin & Co. He married Miss Laura E. Smith in 1865; she was born in Galena, Ill., in 1847; their children are William L. and Eva A. They are Episcopalians. He is a Republican. He was breveted Major, and is Aid-de-Camp on the staff of the commander of the 2d Brigade I. N. G.

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This family biography is one of 1444 biographies included in The History of Adams County, Illinois published by Murray, Williamson & Phelps in 1879.  View the complete description here: The History of Adams County, Illinois

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

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