Transcribed by Mary Ann Kaylor
BASFORD, ISAAC, one of the substantial citizens of Sangamon County, is engaged in general farming, gardening and stock raising on a tract of excellent property in Section 5, Cotton Hill Township. He was born in Hagerstown, Md., June 18, 1835, a son of John and Mary Basford, natives of Maryland.
John Basford, who was a physician and surgeon, practiced his profession in and around Hagerstown all his life, and died at the remarkable age on ninety-eight years, although his wife died when Isaac was an infant. There were eight children in their family, of whom six are now living, the eldest being Thomas, of Dayton, Ohio, and the others: Alfred, living in Hagerstown, Md.; Henry, of Frederick City, Md., Jacob, of Urbana, Mo.; Abraham, of Williamsville, Ill.; and Isaac.
As a youth Isaac Basford learned the trade of blacksmith in Hagerstown, and with his brother Alfred conducted a shop in that city until coming to Springfield, Ill., in 1864, where he opened a blacksmith establishment and carried it on for nine years. At the end of this time he decided to enter the agricultural field and purchased his present farm, a tract of ten acres, on which he has resided ever since. In addition to this he rents fifty acres more, and has followed general farming and stock raising to the present, achieving considerable success in his undertakings. With his family he attends the Christian Church. His political affiliations are with the Democratic party.
Mr. Basford was married (first) to Mary Baker, who was born at Berry Station, Sangamon County, the daughter of Thomas and Lucy Baker, both of whom are now deceased. They were the parents of six children, among them being two pair of twins, and only one child is now living, Lulu, the wife of Henry Bell living near Chestnut, Ill. Mrs. Basford died and Mr. Basford was married (second) September 15, 1875, to Susan Purnell, who was born in Delaware, April 1, 1856, daughter of Jonathan and Sallie A. Purnell, natives of Delaware, who came to Illinois in 1857. Mr. Purnell, who had formerly been a sailor, was engaged in farming in Cotton Hill Township until his death in July, 1893, his wife having passed away January 16, 1892. They had the following children: Mrs. Emily Plumer, a widow of Cotton Hill Township; Margaret, the wife of Alonzo Page, of Springfield; Samuel, of Edinburg, Ill.; Adeline, the wife of William Howlett, of Springfield and Mrs. Basford.
Mr. and Mrs. Basford have had seven children, five of whom are living, as follows: Ethel, the wife of Thomas Patterson, of Cotton Hill Township; Bertha, who married Ernest Thompson, of Springfield; Daisy, the wife of Earl Reed, of Springfield; and Albert and Hazel M., residing at home. Mr. and Mrs. Basford have seven grandchildren.