Sangamon County ILGenWeb © 2000
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By Joseph Wallace, M. A.
of the Springfield Bar
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, IL

HENRY CANTRALL - Henry Cantrall, whose home is on section 32, Fancy Creek township, where he is operating the Samuel D. Cantrall homestead of two hundred and twenty-six acres, was born on the 28th of February, 1849, upon his farm. He represents one of the old families of the county. His father, Samuel D. Cantrall, was born in Clark county, Ohio, February 9, 1816, and was a son of Wyatt Cantrall, whose birth occurred in Bath county, Kentucky, on the 20th of December, 1790. His father was Joshua Cantrall, who was born August 8, 1748, and was a son of Zebulon Cantrall, a native of Wales, who came to the new world and settled in Philadelphia about 1700. Wyatt Cantrall, the grandfather of our subject, was married in Bath county, Kentucky, to Miss Sally England, and afterward removed to Clark county, Ohio, where three children were born unto him and his wife. In 1818 he removed to Illinois and the following year came to Sangamon county, settling in Fancy Creek township. Samuel D. Can trall was brought to Sangamon county when a child of only three years, and was reared to manhood here. After arriving at years of maturity, be wedded Sarah Alexander, a native of this county, and a daughter of one of the early settlers of this portion of the state. Mr. Cantrall then purchased, land and upon this opened up a farm, developing the place upon which his son Henry now resides. He also owned other land and became one of the substantial agriculturists of the county. His death occurred here about 1884, but his wife still survives him, and now resides with her son on the old family homestead.

Henry Cantrall is the only living son of a family of four children. His eldest sister, Lucinda Jane, is the wife of Frank Horn, of Hastings, Nebraska; Eliza is the wife of Henry Zake, a farmer of Fancy Creek township; and Margaret is the wife of Isaac Bales, of Blackwell, Oklahoma. On the home farm, where he yet resides, Henry Cantrall was reared and educated, remaining with his father until be had reached mature years. He was then married in Menard county, Illinois, on the Ist of January, 1871, to Miss Emma E. Graham, who was born in Athens, that county, and was reared and educated there. Her father was Peter Graham, a well known settler of that locality. After their marriage the young couple located upon a place adjoining the old homestead, and Mr. Cantrall began to improve his property. He built a house and barn, fenced his land, planted fruit trees and continued the cultivation of his fields until after his father's death, when he returned to the old homestead, where he has since engaged in farming and stock-raising. He is one of the thrifty and successful agriculturists of his community, and a glance at the place indicates his careful supervision and enterprise.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Cantrall have been born three sons and a daughter: Alvin W., who is married and resides in Springfield; Arthur W., a young man at home; Verna E. and S. D., who are also with their parents. In his political views Mr. Cantrall is a stanch Republican, having supported the party since he cast his first presidential ballot for General U. S. Grant in 1873. He has since voted for every nominee of the party but has never sought or desired office. He served however, for three years as commissioner of highways. He has ever been a warm friend of education believing in good schools and the employment of good teachers, and he served for several years on the school board. Both he and his wife are members of the Christian church of Athens, and he is now serving as one of its elders. Fraternally he is connected with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows at Athens, and filled all of the chairs and is a past grand. Throughout his entire life he has lived in Sangamon county, and has witnessed much of its develo pment and growth for more than a half century. He has also borne his part in the work of progress and improvement, and stands as a splendid type of the representatives of agricultural interests.

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