WILLIAMS, MILTON - While most of the old soldiers have passed away, there are a number still left in Sangamon County, and these are given the honor that is their rightful due, for without the loyalty and bravery of the army, the Union could not have been preserved. One of the veterans of whom the county is proud is Milton Williams, a prosperous farmer of Woodside Township, born in Clinton County, Ohio, August 25, 1838, a son of Haines and Permelia (Myers) Williams, natives of Ohio and Pennsylvania, respectively. The parents came to Illinois in 1855, locating in Cooper Township, Sangamon County, where they bought forty acres of land, upon which the father died in 1863, and the mother several years later. There were seven children (four sons and three daughters), in their family, all of whom are deceased except Milton and his brother Joseph, who was a soldier as well.
The education of Milton Williams was secured in Ohio during his boyhood, but at the same time he was required to assist with work upon the farm. In the spring of 1859 he went to Pike's Peak, following the westward trend of that day, but six months later returned home. He then went to Gentry County, Mo., remained there four years. He entered the home militia, and after serving six months, was mustered out, and enlisted in the regular service, at St. Joseph, in Company B, Twenty-fifth Missouri Volunteer Infantry, which later was consolidated with the Twenty-first Missouri Engineers. Mr. Williams, with his regiment, participated in the battle of Shiloh, the two days flight at Kingston, made a forced march to Raleigh, and came back to Washington, D.C., whence they were sent to Louisville, Ky., to be mustered out, being discharged at St. Louis. Mr. Williams had become a Corporal. At the close of the war he went to Sangamon County to engage in farming, joining his father and remaining there for ten years. At the expiration of that period he moved to Christian County and farmed for another decade. He then moved to Springfield, where he spent the next fifteen years, after which he located in his present home, where he owns five acres of rich farm land.
The first marriage of Mr. Williams occurred in Springfield, in 1871, when he was united to Margaret Galpin, born in Illinois 1851, and they had one child who died in infancy. He was married (Second) in Springfield, in 1886 to Lucinda Dodd, born in Morgan County, Ill., daughter of an early settler and farmer of that county. The second Mrs. Williams died December 25, 1908.
In politics Mr. Williams was a Republican from the start, and has remained faithful to this party ever since. He belongs to Stephenson Post, G.A.R. of Springfield, and enjoys meeting his old comrades and with them reliving the stirring events of the days of the war. In religious faith he is a member of the Church of God, and is earnest in his support of its creed. He has been hard working and thrifty, and has earnestly tried to do what he thought was his duty, both to his country and to his neighbor, and, in so living up to his conception of the golden rule, has established himself in the confidence of his community.