Biography - James C. Noon

JAMES C. NOON, a resident of Pickaway Township, has won an honorable place among the intelligent agriculturists of this county during the quarter of a century or more that he has been identified with them. He has filled offices of trust, and in various ways has shown himself to he a desirable citizen. He was born in Derbyshire, England, June 8, 1840, a son of Jeremiah Noon, who was born in the same place as himself. So also was the father of the latter, George Noon, so far as known, and there it is thought spent his entire life as a farmer.

The father of our subject was the only member of his father's family that ever came to America. He passed his early life in his native shire, and was there married to Amy Burroughs, a native of that part of England, and a daughter of Joseph Burroughs. She died in this county in 1883, at a venerable age. She was the mother of seven children that grew to maturity. At the age of eighteen years Mr. Noon entered the English army as a member of the Second Regiment of Life Guards, and was one of the famous body guards of Queen Victoria at the time of her coronation. He served seven years, and was then honorably discharged, and in 1844 came with his family to the United States. They set sail from Liverpool on the vessel "Rockaway," and twenty-five days later landed at New York. They went direct to Wisconsin, and were among the pioneer settlers of Waukesha County.

After his arrival in that county the father of our subject bought eighty acres of land known as oak-openings, and he and his wife and children began life in their new home in a log house, which he afterwards replaced with a more commodious frame residence. He was busily engaged in his farming interests when the Rebellion broke out. Some of the old spirit that had made him a good soldier in her Majesty's service when he lived in old England awoke within him, and the patriotic love that he bore his adopted country caused him to enlist in 1862 in defense of the Union, and he became a member of the Twenty-eighth Wisconsin Infantry. His experience in the English army gave value to his services, and he was mustered in as First Lieutenant of Company F, and in 1863 won deserved promotion to the captaincy of his company, which he commanded until his death August 20, of the same year, while at home on a furlough, and thus passed away a hero who gave up his life for the Government under which he had come to live nearly two decades before.

He of whom this brief life-record is written was but a boy of four years when his parents brought him to the United States, so he has but little recollection of any other home. He commenced when very young to assist his father on the farm, and whenever opportunity offered attended school. The first one that he went to was taught in a log house, the furniture being of the most primitive kind, the benches being made of split logs. He remained with his parents until 1861, when he paid his first visit to Shelby County. He worked on a farm here one year, and then returning to Wisconsin, took charge of the home farm, which was under his management until 1865. In that year he came back to Shelby County, having been favorably impressed with the opportunities it afforded in the richness of its soil, genial climate, etc., to young men of energy and capability to conduct farming profitably, and here he has given his time to agricultural pursuits ever since.

In 1862 it was Mr. Noon's good fortune to secure a true helpmate by his marriage with Miss Hannah Fear, a native of Somersetshire, England, and a daughter of William and Hannah (Fowler) Fear, who were also of English birth, and were pioneers of Waukesha County, Wis. Mr. and Mrs. Noon have six children living, namely: Edith, Ethel, Hulda, Lotta, Amy and Ruth. Jeremiah, their second child and only son, died when four years old.

A man whose habits and character are above reproach, who has an evenly balanced mind and is well posted on current topics, Mr. Noon's fellow-citizens have shown their appreciation of these traits by calling him to responsible public positions, and thus at one time he represented Pickaway Township on the County Board of Supervisors, and guarded its interests intelligently while an incumbent of that important office.

Extracted 26 May 2018 by Norma Hass from 1891 Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties Illinois, pages 539-540.

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