Biography - John N. Lenox

JOHN N. LENOX. Born of parents who are conspicuous for the superior mental power that they possessed and which gave them. wherever they resided, a prominent position in the community, our subject was early trained in a direction of which comparatively few men have more than the suggestion of the true status of the position. Had he lived a little earlier or a little later doubtless our subject 's father would have been a confrere with Patrick Henry or with Abraham Lincoln. A Virginian, as was the first named, he possessed all the fire and ardor of the Southern orators, and was an effective speaker on political occasions. As it was, Mr. Lenox. Sr., was representative of the best thought and policy in his part of the country and was advanced to many prominent positions which were unsought by him.

John Lenox, the father of our subject, was born in Virginia and early learned the fiery speeches of the Revolutionary heroes. His wife was in her maiden days a Miss Nancy Mellinger. At an early day they settled in Shelby County, Ohio, and there they died. Although the old gentleman was a farmer by occupation he was ever involved in public affairs. His ability in legislative matters was such as to inevitably bring him to the front. He was County Judge of Shelby County, Ohio, and served in the State Legislature for one term. The home life was such as to make the children thoughtful and to develop in them a liking for public affairs as well as a knowledge of Parliamentary rules. The family comprised eight children and of these our subject was fourth in order of birth. He was born in Shelby County, Ohio, December 25, 1825, and was reared to an agricultural life.

John Lenox, Sr., was married December 28, 1848, to Rachael Jane Arbuckle, in their native county in Ohio. She was a daughter of Robert and Leatha (Harn) Arbuckle, both of whom were natives of Maryland, where they grew up and were married and welcomed their little daughter Leatha, who was but two years of age when they removed to Ohio and settled in Shelby County, where they died. Mrs. Lenox, our subject's wife, was born near Hagerstown, Md., January 20, 1829. After their marriage they settled in Shelby County, Ohio, where Mr. Lenox was engaged in farming and stock-raising.

In March, 1854, the original of our sketch removed from his home in Ohio to Shelby County, this state, and in the following December settled upon the farm on section 16, where he now lives. They have a beautiful home pleasantly located and surrounded with tine shade trees, and in the fruit season one may regale oneself with the choicest varieties of the fruits common to this latitude. The home has always been the center and the meeting place for the most cultivated people of the vicinity, who are sure of finding in the genial host an enthusiastic and pleasing talker and a kindly sympathetic listener.

Mr. and Mrs. Lenox are the parents of four children whose names are: Zeru L. A.; Wallace W.; Leatha C. and John M. The eldest daughter is the wife of William H. Shaw, who is ex-Sheriff of Shelby County. Wallace W. is a farmer and stockdealer in Richmond Township, and a progressive and thoroughly business young man. Leatha C. is the wife of John M. Sargeant. John N. is a resident in St. Louis, Mo. He of whom we write has always been engaged in agricultural pursuits and in stock dealing which he has found to he very profitable. He is the owner of three hundred and twenty acres of finely improved land upon which he has made many valuable improvements.

In politics our subject is a Republican, using his influence in favor of the party which is dear to him by principle and by association with the memories of his younger days. Mr. Lenox has ever been a generous contributor to the up-building of churches and the support of the Gospel, and indeed, every progressive measure has received his encouragement and aid.

Extracted 29 May 2017 by Norma Hass from 1891 Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties Illinois, pages 263-264.

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