Biography - John Weeks

JOHN WEEKS. This gentleman, the popular Postmaster of Tower Hill, Shelby County, and Justice of the Peace, is known throughout Shelby County as an upright citizen and a reliable business man. Peaceful and law-abiding and a man of honor in the affairs of life, he has the respect of his acquaintances and his friendly spirit has won a warmer feeling from his neighbors. A veteran of the late war, every loyal heart will feel a thrill of gratitude to him as one of those valiant soldiers to whom we owe the preservation of the Union.

The father of our subject, whose name was George L., was a man of considerable prominence in his community. He was born in Princeton, Ky., and in his early manhood married Nancy Smith, a native of Columbia County, S. C. They emigrated from Kentucky to Illinois in 1830, locating in Bond County, where they passed the remainder of their lives. The father served as Deputy Sheriff of Bond County for several years, held the office of Constable, and was Justice of the Peace for sixteen years. He discharged the duties of these various offices to the general satisfaction, and is remembered as a public-spirited citizen and one who in his business affairs was the soul of integrity. In his chosen calling of a farmer he was successful and acquired a competency. So that he was able to supply his family with every comfort.

In a family of six children our subject was the second, and he was born, February 1, 1831, near Greenville, Bond County, Ill. There he was reared to manhood and remained until he was about twenty-two years old. In the meantime he acquired an excellent education, of which he made use in teaching in Bond, Montgomery, Madison and Shelby Counties, this State. Later he attended school in Platteville, Wis., and also taught school for two terms in that State. He followed the profession of a teacher thirty years consecutively, with the exception of the three years in which he served in the army.

Mr. Weeks came to Shelby County in 1860, and on August 4, 1862, he enlisted in Company B, One Hundred and Fifteenth Illinois Infantry. He was appointed First Sergeant and served until the close of the war. He took part in many important engagements, among them being the battles of Chickamauga, Dalton, Tunnel Hill, Resaca, and other smaller engagements, and altogether he was in action for sixty-seven days. During the fierce conflict at Chickamauga he was commanded by Gen. Steedman to carry the colors, which he did during the remainder of that day, proving himself a brave and valiant soldier. Of the five who were in his mess, he alone escaped fatal injuries.

At the close of the war Mr. Weeks returned to Shelbyville and was soon engaged in his profession. Occupying the position of Principal of the public schools in Windsor, Ill., for two years. He continued teaching until December, 1881, when he was appointed Postmaster at Tower Hill, filling the position satisfactorily until he was deposed under the administration of Grover Cleveland. In April, 1885, he was elected Justice Of the Peace, was reelected in April, 1889, and is now holding that office. In April. 1889. he was re-appointed Postmaster of Tower Hill and assumed the duties of the position in the following June. He has held other offices in the township, and holds a prominent rank among the Republicans of the county. In 1884 he was a candidate for the office of County Surveyor on the Republican ticket, but was defeated by his Democratic opponent. However, he ran ahead of his ticket in every township, with one exception, in the county. Nor is he forgetful of things divine, for he has been a consistent member of the Methodist Church for many years, also acting as Sunday-school Superintendent for a long time.

At the head of the household affairs in the pleasant home of Mr. Weeks is a refined and cultured lady, who prior to October 18, 1866, was known as Sevilla J. Sill. She was born in Monroe County, Ohio, September 1, 1845, and the ceremony which united her for life with Mr. Weeks was performed in Hennepin, Ill. Nine children came to bless the home, viz: Estella, the assistant Postmistress at Tower Hill; George D., Bertel, who died in infancy; John W., Nellie B., who died when two years old; Warren, Chase, Boyd and Lois A. The family are honored members of society and are deservedly popular in the community.

Extracted 25 Apr 2020 by Norma Hass from 1891 Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties Illinois, pages 673-674.

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