MCCOY, JOSEPH C. (deceased). - If it had not been that in the past there were men brave enough to risk their all to develop new lands, and found homes for their loved ones, and prepare for old age, many places now occupied by flourishing communities would still be covered with virgin forests and the present rich farm lands would like fallow. One who gave up his life to farming activities and found an abundant reward in the valuable lands which he developed was the late Joseph C. McCoy, for many years a farmer in the vicinity of Taylorville, Ill. He was born in Tennessee about 1828, a son of Morton M. McCoy, a native of South Carolina. Coming to Tennessee in young manhood, Morton M. McCoy met and married Rachel Wilson of Tennessee. Both came of good Revolutionary stock and were filled with a desire to do the best they could for their children who came to them. Feeling that there were more opportunities in Illinois, they made the then long trip to that State in 1832, locating on Sugar Creek, near what is now the village of Auburn. The father was a carpenter by trade and found plenty of work in Springfield and vicinity. There he had the misfortune to lose his wife. He later married Ellen Laswell, who made his declining years happy. He died when over seventy-five years old.
Joseph C. McCoy was the eldest of the three children born to his parents, and being but four years old when the family came to Illinois, had but little recollection of any life outside this State. Brought up on the farm, he adopted that work and was a farmer all his life. His education was somewhat limited, being confined to the schools of his vicinity, but he made the most of what he had learned and was well informed. The marriage of Mr. McCoy took place in Springfield on January 26, 1854, when he was united with Miss Ellen Davis. They had one child, John, now a resident of Hillsboro, Ill., who married Alice Russell. Mr. and Mrs. McCoy located on the farm on Sugar Creek after their marriage, and there Mr. McCoy spent the remainder of his well-ordered life, his death occurring in 1886. He was a stanch Democrat, but never desired office.
After the death of her father, the family moved to Springfield to the house in which Mrs. McCoy now lives, and where Mr. Davis died August 1, 1900. Mrs. McCoy has lived in her present home in Springfield, at No. 1200 South Spring Street, for eighteen years, and has made it one of the most comfortable in the city. She is a most estimable lady, whose activities in charitable work make her beloved, although with true modesty she allows but little of them to be known to the public.