CHARLES DALLMAN - With the early history of Springfield, especially as a builder and promoter of industrial interests here, Charles Dallman was closely identified and as the years advanced he became recognized as one of the leading architects who erected some of its best buildings. He arrived here in 1849, finding but a struggling village of unpaved streets and few modern improvements. He was then a young man of but thirty years, his birth having occurred in London, England, on the 28th of December, 1818. His parents were William and Ann (Vincent) Dallman, both of whom were natives of London and spent their entire lives there, the father conducting a hotel during the greater part of his active business career.
Charles Dallman acquired a good education in the best schools of Staffordshire, England, and after putting aside his text books began to learn the carpenter's trade. He afterward became an architect and stair builder, gaining marked proficiency in the line of his chosen calling, but believing that he might have still better business opportunities in the new world he crossed the Atlantic to America in 1849 and made his way direct to Springfield. Here he began work at his trade, having a small carpenter shop which stood in the rear of his home, now occupied by his widow. He was actively connected with the early building operations in this city. He built the first staircase in the old courthouse here and also the staircase in the governor's mansion. He erected the Britton Building on South Sixth street and many of the other large buildings of the capital. He continued in active connection with his chosen field of labor up to the time of his death and in Springfield there are still to be seen many evidences of his handiwork, while among those who knew him he is remembered as a man of the utmost reliability in all business transactions, meriting and enjoying the unqualified confidence of those with whom he had dealings.
It was in the year after his arrival in Springfield that Mr. Dallman married in this city to Miss Harriet Waters, whom he had formerly known in England, theirs being one of the first marriages to be celebrated in St. Paul's Cathedral. She was born in Kent, England, January 7, 1831, and was the daughter of John Waters, a ship carpenter, who spent his entire life in that country. Mr. and Mr. Dallman became the parents of eleven children, of whom three are now living: Alice, the wife of John W. Cobbs, a resident of Springfield; Florence, who resides with her mother and who has been a teacher in the county and public schools of Springfield for fifteen years, being now connected in that capacity with the Iles School, and also acting as bookkeeper for the Royal Neighbors lodge; and Vincent, who is now telegraph editor with the State Register, having been connected with that paper from early boyhood. He married Marie Poston and they reside at No. 409 North Fifth street. Those who have passed away are Ellen Harriet, Ann Vincent, Charles, William, John, Ada, Henry and Charles A. The last named died in Arizona. He married Miss Cressie Jageman, of that territory, and had two children, Charles and Ruth.
Mr. and Mrs. Dallman were warm personal friends of Abraham Lincoln and his wife in the early days in Springfield. They lived as neighbors for several years and at any time that Mrs. Dallman was ill Mrs. Lincoln was always found at her bedside. Mrs. Dallman and her daughter reside in a pleasant home at No. 909 East Monroe street, which the husband and father erected over fifty years ago and which has since continuously been the family home. He was well known among the business men of Springfield and was an active factor in the industrial life here. In community affairs he took a deep and abiding interest and his aid and co-operation could always be depended upon to promote public measures for the general good. For three years he served as alderman of Springfield, occupying the position from 1865 until 1868. He was very active in support of the Democracy, having firm faith in its principles and doing all in his power to promote the growth and insure the success of his party. While in England he
held membership with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, but never affiliated with the lodge in this city. He died October 13, 1897, in the faith of St. Paul's Episcopal church, in which he long held membership and to which his wife and daughter yet belong. He was enabled to leave his family in comfortable financial circumstances, because throughout his business career he had so directed his energies as to win a just and desirable reward for his labor. He was never disappointed in his adopted country, but found in its privileges the opportunities which he sought and, placing his dependence upon the substantial qualities of industry, integrity and enterprise he gradually worked his way upward to a position among the substantial as well as respected citizens of Springfield.