John W. Brown. From a twentieth century point of view it may be difficult to fill out a picture of comfortable living in Champaign County in the primitive days when even no railroads reached this section, bringing news, commodities and visitors from the outside world, but it must be remembered that life is more complex now, that horizons are wider, demands greater and expectations higher. Undoubtedly those whose lot it was to carve out the pioneer path here and elsewhere ultimately found happiness and contentment despite the dangers and deprivations. Among the settlers of an early day in Homer Township, Champaign County, was John Brown, for many years an honored resident of this part of the county and’ the father of John W. Brown, one of the substantial men and leading farmers.
John W. Brown was born in Homer Township, Champaign County, Illinois, February 2, 1877. His parents were John and Jane (Stafford) Brown. The father was a native of Ohio and the mother of Pennsylvania. When they came to the county many parts of it were practically unsettled. John Brown devoted all his active years to developing his land in Homer Township and accumulated 214 acres, a fine property on which all the rest of his life was spent, his death occurring March 23, 1913. He had survived his wife since 1884. They were the parents of eight children, namely: Ellen, who is the wife of John T. Palmer, of Homer, Illinois; Austin C., who is deceased; Belle, who is the wife of B. E. Lynch, of Sidney, Illinois; Frank, who is deceased; a daughter who died in infancy; John W.; Josephine, who is the wife of Minford Brown, of Goshen, Indiana; and another daughter who died in infancy.
The public schools in Homer Township afforded John W. Brown his education and his present farm has been his home all his life. Of the homestead he owns seventy-eight acres but his agricultural operations cover 146 acres, all of the land being devoted to general farming. He works his land carefully and intelligently and is numbered with the most successful farmers in the township.
Mr. Brown was married August 9, 1899, to Miss Emma George, who was born in Champaign County and is a daughter of Isaac and Elizabeth (Coddington) George, both of whom were born in Illinois and the father died here January 26, 1890. He was a well known farmer. The mother of Mrs. Brown resides at Homer. Mr. and Mrs. George had five children, namely: Nora, who is deceased; Walter, who lives in Sidney Township; Gertrude, who is the wife of Clement Sanders, of Sidney; Emma, who is the wife of John W. Brown; and Benjamin, who lives at Homer. Mr. and Mrs. Brown have no children. In politics he has always been affiliated with the Republican party. These old families are widely known and are representative people of the county.