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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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ROBERT S. DOUGLAS was a man of excellent judgment and firm convictions upon all subjects of importance, and was regarded as one of the substantial citizens of township 7, range 6, Randolph County. He was a native of Roxburgh, Scotland, where his birth occurred in 1829. The father and mother of our subject bore the names of John and Helen (Smith) Douglas. The parents emigrated to this country when our subject was sixteen years of age, and located in this county, where they were classed among the prosperous farmers of the section. A sad event occurred in the year 1849, when the father, mother, two sons and one daughter were called to the land beyond, two of them dying from cholera.

Young Robert attended school in his native land, Scotland, and obtained but a meager education, as it was necessary that he should begin work early in life. After coming to America he assisted his father in cultivating the home farm until the latter’s death, when the estate was divided between his sister and himself, and he continued to work on the place with his sister as his house keeper. In the year 1867 our subject sold out his share of the farm, and had started for Kansas, when, being taken sick, he returned to Illinois. He then lived on rented land for the following three years, at the expiration of which time he purchased land on Mary’s River, about five miles from Chester. He spent his last days on this place, dying in February, 1875. One hundred and sixty acres were comprised in his fine farm, which was a finely improved and attractive piece of land.

September 13, 1855, our subject and Miss Helen, daughter of Mungo and Isabel (Telfer) Dickson, were united in marriage. Her parents were natives of Roxburgh, Scotland, and came to America with the Douglas family. Robert and Helen were schoolmates in their native land, and by their marriage five children have been born. Isabel died in infancy; Helen died when seven years of age; George is married to Jennie Gant and makes his home in Colorado; William P. married Minnie Hansen and resides near Chester; and Daisy, who is the wife of Channing Smith, lives on a farm near the city of Chester.

Mrs. Douglas is a faithful member of the United Presbyterian Church, as was also her husband. Mr. Dickson, the father of Mrs. Douglas, was an Elder in the United Presbyterian Church in Scotland, and was also made an Elder of the church in Chester on its establishment. He died at his home near Chester in 1878, when at the advanced age of ninety years. Mr. Douglas was a Republican in his political affiliations and a man who by his congenial manners won for himself the admiration of all with whom he had dealings.

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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 Randolph County, Illinois family biographies here: Randolph County, Illinois Biographies

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