Transcribed by Mary Ann Kaylor
MAYER, JACOB (deceased), who for many years carried on farming in Sangamon County, was well known as a public-spirited German-American citizen, industrious and enterprising in business, and ready to do his share to promote the general welfare and prosperity. He was a devout Catholic and endeavored in his daily life to adhere closely to the principles of his religion. He was born in Germany, July 17, 1830, his parents being natives of that country, where they spent their entire lives. The father was a cooper by trade.
Mr. Mayer was educated in Germany and lived there until coming to America in 1872. He located first at Decatur, Ill., and several years later came to Illiopolis, where he was employed by the Wabash Railroad Company for thirteen years. He gave up railroad work in later life and came to the farm on Section 24, Illiopolis Township, south of the village, where he spent the remainder of his life. He purchased this farm and operated it successfully the remainder of his active life, and his family still make it their home. Both he and his wife were members of the Catholic Church and in politics he was a Democrat.
Mr. Mayer's marriage occurred in Decatur, Ill., in June 1878, when he was united with Mary (Matthews) Gilmore, who was born in Chatham, Sangamon County, daughter of William and Christian Matthews, the father a native of England and the mother of Ohio. Mr. Matthews was a millwright by occupation and was a very early settler of Chatham, where he erected a mill and conducted it for several years, until he retired and moved to Illiopolis, where both he and his wife died. Mary Matthews was married (first) to James Gilmore, in 1865. He was born in Ireland and came to the United States as a young man, locating near Springfield. He was a farmer by occupation and carried on farming in Sangamon County until his death, which occurred at Illiopolis, then his home. He served in the Civil War, enlisting from Springfield in the Eighth Illinois Volunteer Infantry and serving to the end of the war. He was wounded at the Battle of Memphis. To Mr. and Mrs. Gilmore eight children were born and five are now surviving, namely: Elizabeth, wife of John Mead of Mattoon, Ill.; George of Lanesville; Mary of Warrensburg, Ill.; Anna, wife of Patrick Norris of Kansas; Maggie, wife of Joseph Myers, of North Dakota. Three grandchildren have been born to this family. To Jacob Mayer and wife three children were born: Joseph, of Lincoln, Ill.; John, a resident of Illiopolis; Charles, living near Mt. Auburn. To this marriage there are four grandchildren. The death of Mr. Mayer occurred in 1907 and Mrs. Mayer owns the home farm.