Transcribed by Mary Ann Kaylor
SANDERS, CHARLES B., Sr. , who is now living retired at Pleasant Plains, is a representative of one of Sangamon County's oldest and most honored families. He was born May 2, 1828 in Fauquier County, Va., a son of Albon Nash and Lucinda O. (Powell) Sanders, he a native of Fauquier County and she of Fairfax County, Va., in which latter county they were married in 1826, after which they settled on a farm. There children were born, as follows: Charles B.; Albert P., who made a trip overland to Colorado in 1850, and has since been lost to the family; Joseph Britton, who enlisted in the One Hundred Seventeenth Illinois Infantry during the Civil War, contracted illness, was honorably discharged and came home, where he died in September 1879; Wilson Fenton, also a member of that regiment, served four years, was honorably discharged and died from the effects of army life in 1883, at the home of his brother, Charles B.; Armstrong, born February 3, 1837, died October 12, 1896; Anne Elizabeth, born in 1840, married Bushrod Powell April 9, 1861, and died in November, 1863, he surviving her until November, 1895; William E., born in 1844, is a stock operator of Richland, Mo.; and Mary V., born May 21, 1847, married Abraham Epler, and both are deceased.
The family left Virginia in 1844 and Albon N. Sanders followed farming in Cass County, Ill., for twenty years, at the end of which time he purchased the hotel property at Pleasant Plains and continued to operate it until his death, January 15, 1893, at the age of ninety-two years, his wife having passed away in 1870. For twenty-four years he served as Postmaster, and was well known and highly respected throughout his section. He and his wife were earnest Christian people, he being a member of the Baptist Church, while she was a Presbyterian.
Britton Sanders, the grandfather of Charles B., was of English ancestry and was reared in Fauquier County, Va., where he married Mary Love Gill, February 12, 1798. They made a home in Virginia, he finally locating in Loudoun County, where he died in 1838. His first wife died in Fauquier County, and he married (second) Annie Ekahel, who died in Loudoun County. He was a farmer and an old "Hard Shell" Baptist minister. Of their twelve children, eleven grew to maturity: Robert Henry, who died in Nashville, Tenn.; Albon Nash, father of Charles B.; Charles L., who died in Nashville, Tenn.; Sidney H., who died in Nashville; Samuel A. who died in Loudoun County, Va.; Beverly C., a prominent wholesale merchant in Baltimore, was appointed Collector of the Port at San Francisco by Millard P. Fillmore, but returned to Baltimore and there died December 25, 1883; Lewis Fenton, about 1834 emigrated to Illinois, settled in Beardstown, was for several years County Clerk, and died September 27, 1883; John Gill died in young manhood in Loudoun County, Va.; Wilson S. died on the old home farm, was Colonel of a regiment in the Indian war in Florida, and later became a prominent politician, and died August 23, 1885; and Mary Love, who married Fenton Vandewenter, emigrated to Cass County, Ill., about 1834, located in Springfield in 1877, and died there about 1903.
Mr. Sanders' maternal grandfather was Joseph Powell, who was a German and settled in Virginia in Colonial days, his life being spent in Fairfax County, where he was a man of note, a County Commissioner and later for many years High Sheriff. He as a prominent Mason, and as a member of that order attended the funeral of George Washington. Of his family of seven children all are deceased: Bushrod died about 1838; Edmond died in Fairfax County; Jane E. married William B. Peak, came to Illinois in 1837, settling in Salisbury, where he opened the first store in the town; Walter, for many years Deputy Sheriff of Fairfax County, Va., was the first Sheriff elected under the new constitution; Joseph had made arrangements to emigrate to Illinois but took sick and died; Luciana O. and Beverly. Beverly Powell came to Illinois with Mr. and Mrs. Peak in 1837 and settled in Springfield, but in 1844 went back to Virginia and persuaded Albon N. Sanders, by means of letters written by Abraham Lincoln, to come to this State. On settling in Sangamon County he became a stanch friend of Mr. Lincoln, although while in Virginia he has been a slave owner. Beverly Powell, who was Mr. Lincoln's best man at his marriage, went home to settle up the estate and while there died.
Charles B. Sanders came to Illinois with his parents when he was sixteen years of age and settled in Cass County, having received his education in his native state. After the family settled on the farm he took charge of it until 1858, when he went to McLean County, Ill., with his two brothers, Wilson and Joseph, and there they operated a farm until 1862, when the two brothers enlisted for army service and during the following year the farm was sold. Mr. Sanders came to Pleasant Plains at this time and went into the hotel business on the old State Road, and successfully conducted it until 1864, when he sold out to his father, at which time Mr. Sanders removed to Litchfield, Ill., and embarked into the insurance business. In 1870 his mother died and he and his wife returned to Pleasant Plains to take charge of the hotel, but in 1874 they went to Ashland, where Mr. Sanders took charge of the Transient House. In 1878 he removed to Barton County, Mo., where he purchased a farm, and remained there until 1893. At the time of the death of his father, Mr. Sanders came back and took charge of the hotel, but subsequently bought a small piece of land near Pleasant Plains, where he has since made his home. Both he and his wife untied with the Methodist Episcopal Church when they were young, and both have always taken a great interest in church work. Mr. Sanders was a charter member of the Masonic Lodge, joining over fifty years ago. In 1846 he heard John Hawkins, of Baltimore, speak on Temperance, and since that time has tasted no liquor. To this he attributes his long life and vigorous health. He walks erect without a cane, reads without glasses and has never to reply upon the services of a doctor.
On March 7, 1861, Mr. Sanders was married to Mary E. Teal, who was born at Carlisle, Nicholas County, Ky., December 31, 1837, a daughter of Benjamin M. and Elinor (Bruce) Teal, a lineal descendant of Robert Bruce of Scotland. Her mother's parents emigrated to Georgia, and from Georgia to Kentucky in early days and in 1855 came to Sangamon County, Ill., purchasing a farm in McLean County, Ill. during the following year. Her father died in 1882, aged seventy-one years, and her mother in 1888 in Barton County Mo., both being buried in McLean County, Ill. To them were born seven children: Mrs. Sanders; Lucian, widow of John Pumpelly, a resident of Bellflower, McLean County; Samuel F., a farmer in North Dakota; George B., a farmer of Barton County, Mo.; Edward H., a farmer of Iroquois County, Ill.; Sarah J., who married William Brigs, and both died in McLean County; and Frances T., widow of William Briggs, his second wife.
Mr. and Mrs. Sanders have had three children: Mabel, born November 5, 1870, in Pleasant Plains, is the wife of G. H. Lange, of Springfield, Ill.; Elinor, born November 9, 1871, in Pleasant Plains, is the wife of William J. Graham, a farmer of Barton County, Mo.; and Charles B. Jr.