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Adams, Jane E.
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Adams, Jane E.
Contributed by Barbara
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Source: Past and Present of Pike County, Page 618-619


Mrs. Jane E. Adams, one of the worthy pioneer women of Pike county, having long resided within its borders where she has a wide and favorable acquaintance, was born in Troy, New York, on the 20th of June, 1829, and there spent the first seven years of her life, after which she came to Pike county, Illinois, in 1836, with her parents, John and Abigail (Bennett) Sanderson. Her father was called to Rockport in that year to build and take charge of the flour and grist mill there. He was both a millwright and carpenter by trade and he performed the task assigned to him in a capable manner. He lived alternately at Rockport and at Summer Hill until 1883 and after abandoning the milling business he concentrated his energies upon carpentering and erected the church and many residences in Summer Hill and other parts of the county, including some in Rockport. On the 7th of May, 1853, he lost his wife, who died at Summer Hill and was buried in the cemetery there. He afterward wedded Mrs. Merrill, of Pittsfield, and at her death her grave was made in the West cemetery of that city. Mr. Sanderson passed away in Pittsfield on the 31st of October, 1893, and was buried in Summer Hill cemetery by the side of his first wife. By that marriage there had been born eight children, six sons and two daughters, namely: Mary A., Charles H., Robert E., William H., George R., Charles F., Jane E. and one son who died at birth. Of these William H., George R. and Mrs. Adams are still living.

Being brought to Pike county when a little maiden of only seven years Mrs. Adams acquired her education in the early district schools and was reared amid the wild scenes and environments of pioneer life, so that her mind bears the impress of early events and conditions in the county when all families were forced to meet hardships and trials incident to the establishment of homes on the frontier. She was trained to the duties of the household and was thus well qualified to take charge of a home of her own when on the 14th of October, 1849, she gave her hand in marriage to Jeremiah G. Adams, a son of Israel A. and Harriet (Green) Adams, natives of Rensselaer county, New York. The father was a woolen manufacturer of the Empire state and on leaving the east he removed with his family to the Ross homestead in Pike county, Illinois, in 1843. Here Mrs. Adams has lived for fifty-six years. Her father engaged in farming for many years, carefully cultivating his land and carrying on the work of improvement until he had a splendidly developed property in Atlas township. He died September 17, 1883, and was buried in the Adams and Dustin cemetery. His wife survived until February 12, 1884, when her grave was then made by the side of her husband's.

Jeremiah G. Adams was sixteen years of age when his parents came to Pike county. He had been educated in the schools of Stephentown, New York, and following the removal to the west he engaged in farming with his father up to the time of his marriage in 1849. His father then retired from the active management of the home farm and he took charge of the property, continuing its further cultivation and development for many years. He added substantial improvements to the home place and transformed it into a valuable farm property, from which he annually harvested good crops that found a ready sale on the market. In addition to his capable management of his farming interests he found time and opportunity to serve in public office and filled the position of supervisor of Atlas township for several years. He was also a member of the board of levee commissioners, was school trustee and at the time of his death was road commissioner. He held membership in the Congregational church, to the teachings of which he was most loyal and in the work of which he took an active and helpful part. His life at all times was honorable and upright and he was fair in his dealings with his fellowmen and just in his treatment of those with whom he was associated. Moreover, he possessed a kindly, generous spirit and cordial disposition that won him warm friendships and made him popular with those whom he met. His death occurred at the family home in Atlas township, April 30, 1903, and his remains were interred in the Adams and Dustin cemetery. He was a devoted husband, a kind and indulgent father, and his personal qualities were such that his death was the occasion of deep and widespread regret throughout the entire community. He had lived in the county from pioneer times to the present era of progress and development and had not only witnessed the trend of events but also bore his part in the movements which have resulted beneficially to his part of the county.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Adams were born nine children, of whom one died unnamed at birth, while the others were Hattie A., Mary E., Clarence A., Fannie, Laura V., George S., Maggie A. and Jennie. Of these all are yet living with the exception of Clarence A. and Jennie, the latter dying July 24, 1865, and the former on the 5th of January, 1875. They, too, were interred in the Adams and Dustin cemetery. Mrs. Adams still resides upon the old farm homestead in Atlas township at the advanced age of seventy-six years and for seventy years she has lived in Pike county, few having arrived here prior to the time when her parents established their home on what was then a Wild western frontier. She has led a busy and useful life, has reared a family of children who have done credit to her name and teachings, and is now one of the esteemed and valued pioneer women of the county, held in loving regard by many for her acts of kindliness and many good qualities.

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