Biography - Hugh Walden

HUGH NELSON WALDEN. a well-known stock-raiser and farmer residing on section 31, Windsor Township, Shelby County, was born just a quarter of a mile south of his present residence, January 19, 1830. His father, Hugh Walden, was a native of North Carolina, and his mother, whose maiden name was Mary Montgomery, was born in Kentucky. They both came to this State before marriage, and were united near Shawneetown, and became residents of Illinois Territory in those early days prior to its admission as a State. It was in 1827 that this young couple came to Shelby County, and settled in Richland Township, and there they spent the remainder of their days, the father being called hence in 1869, and the mother surviving him for ten years.

Every one of the five sons and five daughters of this worthy couple lived to attain maturity, marry and establish families of their own, but eight of the ten have now passed away, seven of them dying of that dire disease, consumption. The only surviving brother of our subject is Leonard V., the youngest of the family. He lives on the old homestead, which is now a portion of his brother's large farm. Our subject has been twice married, his first wife being Maria Davis, to whom he was united March 17, 1853. Seven children were born of this marriage, of whom three are now living — Mary M., Nancy Ivy and Harlan, all of whom have grown to maturity and are living with their father. Their mother passed away March 6, 1874. Mr. Walden was married a second time, April 13, 1875, and was united at that time with Theoda D. Hazen, who was born in Bridgeton, Me., April 11, 1842. She is a daughter of John and Esther (Libbey) Hazen. Her father died in his native State April 14, 1877, and the mother still resides in Bridgeton. Only one of her three sons and three daughters have passed away, and Mrs. Walden is her eldest. By this marriage Mr. and Mrs. Walden have had three children, all of whom are deceased, two dying in infancy. Abbie Hazen, who was born October 2, 1877, died March 12, 1890; she was a bright, beautiful girl of thirteen summers, whose place can never be tilled to her sorrowing parents, and who was sincerely mourned by many admiring friends and playmates.

Go to thy rest fair child.
Go to thy dreamless bed
While yet so gentle, undefiled,
With blessings on thy head.
Ere sin hath seared thy breast,
Or sorrow waked thy tear,
Rise to thy throne of changeless rest
In yon celestial sphere.

If any man may be called a pioneer of Shelby County, Mr. Walden is pre-eminently one, as it has been his home for sixty-one years. Six hundred splendid acres constitute his farm in Windsor and Richland Townships, and upon them he has excellent buildings and fine improvements, the whole estate being in fact an ideal country home. Mr. Walden has always been a Democrat in his political views, and he says he expects to die a Democrat. He is a Universalist in his religious belief, although he holds no church connection. His excellent wife joined the Cambridge Baptist Church in Massachusetts, when she was only seventeen years of age, and she has ever maintained her membership with that organization. The township of Windsor has honored both itself and our subject by giving him at various times every office within its gift. He served seven years as Supervisor, ten years as Highway Commissioner, one term as Assessor, and School Director and Trustee for nine and ten years each.

Extracted 29 May 2017 by Norma Hass from 1891 Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties Illinois, pages 271-272.

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