Biography - John Luffers

JOHN LUFFERS. The name at the head of this sketch is that of a practical farmer and stock-raiser residing on sections 17 and 18, of Pickaway Township, where he settled in 1851. Since that time he has put a great number of fine improvements upon the place so that it is now a most comfortable and desirable home. He came to Shelby County in 1846 and since that time he has lived here and in Flat Branch Township. Our subject began life here as a poor man has since made all that he now possesses, and is at the present time looked up to as one of the most successful men in the county. He is worth at least $20,000 and pays annually from $80 to $100 in taxes. His farm, which consists of one hundred and forty acres, is in very good condition. He is noted throughout the county for his industry and honesty.
Our subject is of German birth and parentage, having first seen the light of day in the Kingdom of Hanover, Germany, January 6, 1826. His parents, who are Germans, were poor but worthy people and they lived and died in their native kingdom at quite an advanced age. They were George and Ellen Luffers and were small farmers; the father adding a carpenter's trade to his stock in store to aid in the support of his family. They were members of the Lutheran Church. Our subject is one of four children, there being three sons and one daughter, all of whom are now in this country. A sister died at an early age in Madison County, Ill. Mr. Luffers was the first of the family to come to the United States, being only eighteen years of age when he left his native land, he took passage on a sailing vessel called the “Little Competitor," and after eight weeks and three days spent on the ocean he landed in New Orleans, coming thence to St. Louis. This little trip occupied ten days. It can now he accomplished in a little over one day. The delay was caused by the ice blockade on the river, for our subject came northward by boat. He then came to Edwardsville, Madison County, this State, where he spent his first year. Here he was married in the township of Pickaway, in October, 1859, to Miss Louisa Smith. She was born in Madison County in 1828, and was a daughter of Thomas and Mary (Tolly) Smith, natives of Kentucky, who came to Illinois in an early day and settled in Madison County, where both parents died while yet in middle life. Mrs. Luffers spent the greater part of her life before her marriage in her native county. She has ever been a true helpmate to her husband and is no small factor in his successful career.
Our subject and his wife have had no children of their own but they have been the loving foster parents of several children. These are Laura Carharn, who is now the wife of M. F. Cutler, a farmer in this township; Kate Goodwin and Thomas Goodwin, the latter of whom is deceased. Kate married Herm Methias and they live on a farm in Flat Branch Township.
Our subject came to his present location from Madison County, Ill., where he had arrived in 1845, spending about twelve months in that place doing what he could in the way of earning money for self-support. His wages were but $7 or $8 per month at that time. Soon after marriage, however, he obtained the nucleus of his present farm, and since that time has been steadily advancing in his financial position. Politically Mr. Luffers affiliates with the Democratic party. He has held the position of Commissioner of Highways and satisfactorily discharged its duties. He and his wife are charming people, having attained the mellow age at which life is no longer a strife but a waiting period for the better thing that is to come after. They are both attendants upon the Baptist Church and are liberal supporters of the same.

Extracted 07 Apr 2017 by Norma Hass from 1891 Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties Illinois, pages 231-232.

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