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Bolin, Charles E.
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Bolin, Charles E.
Contributed by Barbara
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Source: Past and Present of Pike County, Page 515-516


Charles E. Bolin is one of the prominent and representative business men of Pike county, making his home in Milton, where he is now conducting the Exchange Bank, of which he is sole owner. He is also engaged extensively in the live-stock business, and has large landed interests. His recognition of business opportunities, his capable use of each situation and his unfaltering perseverance and diligence constitute the salient elements in a successful career. He is a native of Dewitt county, Illinois, born April 29, 1843, his parents being Myrus F. and Rebecca A. Bolin, both of whom are now deceased, the father having passed away at the age of sixty-five years, while the mother's death occurred when she was eighty-one years of age. They were long residents of Dewitt county, Illinois, where they arrived in 1838, thus casting in their lot with the early settlers who aided in the reclamation of that district for the purposes of cultivation and civilization. There they continued to reside until called to their final rest.

Charles E. Bolin was reared upon the old home farm there, and acquired his education in the country schools, wherein he mastered the usual branches of learning taught in such institutions. Through the summer months he aided in the labors of the farm, becoming familiar with work of cultivating the fields and raising stock. When twenty-five years of age, realizing the necessity and value of further education, he entered Eureka College in Woodford county, Illinois, where he remained for six months. He then turned his attention to farming, continuing actively in that work until the fall of 1868.

Mr. Bolin was married on the 22d of October, 1868, to Mrs. Harriet N. Bolin, a daughter of Nathan and Elizabeth Tucker, early settlers of Pike county, Illinois, but both are now deceased. Nathan Tucker died in 1847, and his wife, long surviving him, passed away at an advanced age in 1894. Their daughter first married Charles Colburn Bolin, now deceased. There was one child by that marriage, Caddie Colburn Bolin, who died in 1877, at the age of ten years. Mr. and Mrs. C. E. Bolin became the parents of six children: Estella B., Artie L., Charles E., Hattie, Jewel and Myrtie D. Bolin. Of the living Estella B. is now the wife of O. C. Hoover, and has three children, two of whom are living: Bede Bolin and Myrrell Bolin Hoover. Artie L., Charles E. and Myrtie D. Bolin are all at home with their parents.

The year following his marriage Mr. Bolin removed to Milton, where he has since been engaged in the live-stock business, and is one of the most extensive and prominent dealers in this line in the county. He is now associated with his son, Charles E. Bolin, Jr., and their sales of cattle and swine bring a most gratifying financial return annually. In July, 1875, in connection with W. E. Butler and L. J. Frank, Mr. Bolin established the Exchange Bank of Milton which was under the management of Mr. Butler until October, 1878, at which date Mr. Butler retired and Mr. Bolin succeeded him as manager, the business being continued under the firm name of C. E. Bolin & Company until the death of Mr. Frank in August, 1898, since which time Mr. Bolin has been sole owner and proprietor of the bank, which is a reliable financial concern, of much value to the community as well as a source of individual profit. As opportunity has offered Mr. Bolin has also made investment in real estate, until he is now the owner of about one thousand acres of rich and fertile land in Montezuma and Detroit townships. He is alert and enterprising, quickly notes a good business opportunity, and through his well directed efforts has worked his way upward to success. He is indeed a self-made man, owing his prosperity entirely to his own labors; and his life record should serve as an inspiration and encouragement to others, showing what may be accomplished through personal effort guided by sound judgment and supplemented by laudable ambition. In community affairs he has been deeply and helpfully interested, and at various times through a period of ten years has served as a member of the board of supervisors. His political allegiance is given to the democratic party; and he is a member of the Christian church, having served as one of the elders at Milton since 1872. He has probably attended and officiated at more funerals than any other man in the county. In an analyzation of his life record it will be seen that while he has prospered, his methods have ever been such as would bear close investigation and scrutiny. He has never taken advantage of the necessities of his fellowmen in any business transaction but through the legitimate channels of trade has won his prosperity, while at the same time his course has excited the admiration and won the respect of all who know him.

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