HUGH STEWART MAGILL, SR. - Hugh S. Magill, a successful farmer and stock raiser residing on section 29, Chatham township, was born near Belfast, Ireland, on the 10th of June, 1830, his parents being James and Elizabeth (Stewart) Magill. The father was also born in Ireland of Scotch parentage, and was there married, and the mother's birth occurred in the same country. James Magill followed farming in his native land for many years, during which time eight children were added to the household. He at length decided to come to America and on the 12th of May, 1844, landed in New York city. Locating in Utica, New York, he made his home in that city until called to his final rest in March, 1854. His wife, who survived him some years, came west and died at the home of a daughter at Rockford, Illinois, at the advanced age of ninety years, her remains being taken back to Utica and laid by the side of her husband.
Hugh S. Magill was bout fourteen years of age on the emigration of the family to the United States. He received a good common school education, and after leaving school was employed in the New York cotton mills at Utica for eleven years. In that city he was married on the 25th of November, 1853, the lady of his choice being Miss Charlotte Adalia Richmond, who was born and reared in Madison county, New York, being a daughter of Dr. Hort T. Richmond.
For two years after his marriage Mr. Magill remained in the east and then came to Illinois, arriving in Chatham in a snowstorm at 2 a.m. on the 1st of March, 1856. About a month later he purchased the one hundred and sixty acre farm where he now resides, it being a tract of wild prairie land when it came into his possession. There was not even a house upon the place, but to its development and cultivation he at once turned his attention and today has a well improved farm. There is a neat residence, good and substantial outbuildings and a nice orchard. In connection with general farming he raises and feeds considerable stock for market, and is also interested in the insurance business, being a member of the Sangamon County Mutual Insurance Company, for which he writes and adjusts insurance.
Mr. and Mrs. Magill are the parents of nine children, namely: Charles F., now a contractor and builder of Stafford, Kansas; James Sumner, a farmer of Lostine, Oregon; Seward Lincoln, a farmer of the same place; David H., a farmer of Chatham township, this county; Hugh S., Jr., head teacher in the high school at Springfield; George M., at home; Ella, also at home; Ida, wife of James Fowler, of Hiawatha, Kansas; and Lottie, wife of Charles Purdan, a farmer of Chatham township.
Religiously Mr. and Mrs. Magill are members of the Presbyterian church, and politically he is a supporter of the Republican party. He cast his first vote for Zachary Taylor, the Whig candidate. For the success that Mr. Magill has achieved in life he deserves much credit for he started out with no capital and by industry, perseverance and good management has steadily worked his way upward until he is today one of the substantial men of his community, as well as one of its honored and highly esteemed citizens.