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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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REV. R. A. CRISWELL, Normal; was born in West Virginia, near Wheeling, May 20, 1820; son of John and Rebecca (Kilgore) Criswell, who were of Scotch origin; during his early life his school advantages were very limited, but by home study he prepared himself, and entered the West Alexandria Academy in 1844, continuing some four years; then entered the Washington College, at Washington, Penn., and graduated in 1849; early in life, he had chosen the work of the ministry, and was educating himself for that work; he entered the Princeton Theological Seminary; took a thorough course, and graduated in May, 1852; during this time, he was licensed to preach; he came to Illinois in 1852; located in Menard Co., and began preaching in the North Sangamon Church, and was installed over that Church in November, 1853, where he remained sixteen years. He served during the late war (in different regiments) as Chaplain; he located in Normal in 1867, where he has since lived, continuing in the work of the ministry. He married Miss Elizabeth E. Carson, of West Virginia, June 29, 1852; they are prominently known and highly respected; they have raised a family of nine.

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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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