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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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JONATHAN NELSON, wagon and carriage maker, Saybrook; was born in Ulster Co., N. Y., Aug. 23, 1844; his parents moved to Bloomington, when he was 4 years of age, being among the early settlers of this county; the subject of this sketch lived with them up to the age of 19, when our late civil war having broken out, he enlisted in Co. A, 94th regiment I. V. I., and served three years. In connection with his enlistment, quite a mistake has been made, which we wish to correct in this biography, and that is that he was entered and carried upon the rolls of his company as John Nelson, instead of Jonathan Nelson, his right name, and therefore the credit he deserves as having acted in defense and in perpetuation of the Union, is not given him upon the National records. After his discharge from the army he returned to Bloomington, and was engaged for three or four years manufacturing and selling pumps, and, in 1870, came to Saybrook, working at his trade for three years, when he went to Pike’s Peak, and remaining one summer, returned to Bloomington, and after staying there two years, came to Saybrook, in 1875, and engaged in the business of wagon-making, and in November, 1878, formed a co-partnership with Levi Heller, under the name of Heller & Nelson, in the wagon-making business. He married Miss Sarah E. Nelson, of Bloomington, Oct. 16, 1867; they had five children, four living — John M., born April 3, 1871; Richard O., May 6, 1872; Lillian C., June 7, 1875; Emma J., Oct. 8, 1877; and one deceased, Charles H., Aug. 4, 1868, and died Feb. 7, 1870.

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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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