JAMES E. CALDWELL - James E. Caldwell, although one of the younger members of the Sangamon county bar, has already attained success that many an older practitioner might well envy. In this profession advancement must depend upon merit. It can not be secured through gift or purchased, but is based upon strong mentality, close application and a keenly analytical mind. These qualities are possessed by Mr. Caldwell, and he is rapidly winning his way to the foremost place in the ranks of the legal fraternity of Springfield.
A native of Sangamon county, he was born August 14, 1871, his parents being George M. and Kitty (Robards) Caldwell. The father was born near Lexington, Kentucky, in the year 1833, and was married in his native state, after which he removed with his wife to Sangamon county, Illinois, settling one mile west of Williamsville, where he engaged in farming and stock-raising. He purchased a small tract of land, but as his financial resources increased he added to this property until he had three hundred and twenty acres, upon which he erected good buildings, and today he is the owner of one of the best improved farms of his neighborhood. For some years he was well known as a breeder of shorthorn cattle and Berkshire hogs, winning considerable distinction in this way, for he produced excellent grades of stock that found a ready sale upon the market. He is recognized as one of the progressive citizens of his township, carrying on his farm work along modern methods and at the same time taking an active interest in matters of citizenship, which pertains to general progress. He votes with the Democracy, and held a number of minor offices in his township. His wife was born in Lexington, Kentucky, in 1837, a daughter of Otho L. and Catherine Robards. Mrs. Caldwell is the mother of six children: George R., a resident farmer of Sangamon county; Otho L., an attorney at law and assistant county superintendent of schools; John Young, a prosperous farmer of Logan county, Illinois; James E., of this review; Elizabeth, who died in childhood; and C. Mae, at home.
James E. Caldwell, of the firm of Caldwell & Caldwell, was reared as a farmer boy, doing such work as was required in connection with the cultivation of the fields from the time of early spring planting until crops were harvested in the late autumn. During the winter months he attended the district schools, acquiring a good knowledge of the common branches of English learning. In his nineteenth year he began teaching in the country schools, and followed that profession for four years. Desiring, however, to become a member of the bar, he became a student in the law office of Patton, Hamilton & Patton, and after thorough and broad reading, was admitted to the bar before the supreme court at Springfield on the 7th of June, 1899. ON the 1st of September, following, he opened a law office at No. 217½ South Fifth street, and is now in the enjoyment of a good business for one so young.
Mr. Caldwell was united in marriage to Miss Bessie Council, of Williamsville, a daughter of Wesley and Martha (Wigginton) Council. They have two children: George Ernest and James E. The parents are well known in Sangamon county, and the hospitality of many of the best homes of Springfield is extended to them. As Mr. Caldwell has spent his entire life in this county, he has a wide acquaintance here, and in recognition of his strong purpose, his earnest study and laudable ambition, he is now accorded a good clientage in his profession.