MATHENY, EDWARD DOW, (deceased). - The profession of law in Springfield has been one the dignity of which has always been rigidly upheld by its members, many of whom have served in official capacities in the city and aided in fashioning laws for the advancement of the State's capital. One who was for many years an honor to the profession and was widely known as lawyer, official and statesman, was the late Edward Dow Matheny, who was born December 4, 1847, in Springfield and there resided until his death, which occurred March 18, 1902.
Mr. Matheny was a son of County Judge James Harvey Matheny, of St. Clair County, and Maria (Lee) Matheny, of Greene County, Ill., and the family has for many years been known as one of the most prominent and highly honored in the city.
Mr. Matheny's education was begun in the public and high schools of Springfield, and he began studying law with McGuire & Matheny, his father's firm. For a short period he was engaged in school teaching in Springfield and Sangamon County, and became well and favorably known as an educator. On being admitted to the Bar, Mr. Matheny started on the practice of his profession and, his ability becoming recognized, he was soon appointed Deputy County Clerk, and later Circuit Clerk of Sangamon County. A Democrat in political matters, he always took a prominent part in Democratic affairs. His fraternal connection was with the Woodmen and the Red Men of Springfield, while his religious affiliation was with the First Christian Church.
On January 29, 1880, Mr. Matheny was married to Miss E. Caddie Priest, who was born in Greencastle, Ind., a daughter of William N. and Mary A. Priest, who came form Kentucky to St. Louis, Mo., and thence to Springfield in 1872. Mr. and Mrs. Matheny had no children.
To profound learning Mr. Matheny untied a high standard of professional honor of which many are incapable. No client, no matter how powerful he might be, political or otherwise, who came to him with a case without merit could have his services. He would defend no cause where he did not believe he was on the right side. The same inflexible honesty and independence characterized him in all the relations of life. In all his official capacities he served the community so well as to deserve and receive its thanks, and his place will be hard to fill.