COL. NICHOLAS P. IGLEHART

Source: Album of Genealogy and Biography, Cook County, Illinois with Portraits 3rd. ed. revised and extended (Chicago: Calumet Book & Engraving Co., 1895), pp. 596-598.

COL. NICHOLAS P. IGLEHART was a prominent pioneer of Evanston, who did much toward promoting the real-estate interests of Cook County. He and his zealous Christian wife were distinguished for the manifold efforts which they exerted in behalf of the prosperity of that place, and the active part which they took in laying the foundation of its moral and spiritual progress. They were the offspring of families which have ever been conspicuous in American history, and whose members have exerted a marked influence in securing the rights and liberties of which every true citizen is proud. Colonel Iglehart was born at Ellicott's Mills, Maryland, July 29, 1811, and died at Evanston, April 10, 1877. He was a son of William and Jane (Smith) Iglehart. The former was born at Ellicott's Mills, in 1778. During the War of 1812 he was a member of Capt. L,. Hammond's company, in Col. F. Tilghman's regiment of Maryland cavalry. His father was John Iglehart, a farmer of Prince George's County, Maryland, and his mother's name was Mary Denoon. John Iglehart's father, who bore the same Christian name, was an Austrian emigrant, who located in Maryland in 1735. The family homestead adjoined the noted Carroll estate, and during his boyhood Nicholas P. Iglehart was well acquainted with Charles Carroll, of Carrollton, signer of the Declaration of Independence.

In 1833 the subject of this sketch moved to Cincinnati, Ohio, at that time the center of the pork-packing industry, in which business he engaged. In 1851 he became a resident of Chicago, and was one of the first men in that city to make a business of dealing in real estate. Five years later he removed to the North Shore, locating in what is now a part of the city of Evanston, where he built a house and laid out extensive grounds, forming a country seat, to which he gave the name of "Oakton." At that time there was no station on the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad between Rose Hill and Evanston, and that corporation gave but little attention to the accommodation of suburban travel. At an expense of considerable time and trouble, Mr. Iglehart secured the erection of a station, which is now called Calvary, then known as Oakton, and even then it required considerable persuasion to induce the railroad managers to stop one train a day each way at that point. He subdivided a part of the present city of Evanston, and handled a great deal of city property, being at one time the most extensive dealer in that line in Chicago.

During the last eight years of his existence, he suffered much from ill-health, and spent considerable time in Wisconsin on that account. He was one of the first men to call attention to the wonderful mineral springs of Waukesha County, which have since become so famous. He built a hotel at Pewaukee, Wisconsin, known as the "Oakton Springs Hotel," and also built a handsome private residence at that place. He was a prominent member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, serving at different times as Grand Patriarch of the Grand Encampment of Illinois, and Grand Representative to the Supreme Lodge of the United States.

Colonel Iglehart was married, on the 18th of July, 1837, to Miss Frances Mary Gano, of Cincinnati, Ohio. She was a daughter of Lieut. Aaron G. Gano and Frances Burley. Her father was one of the earliest graduates of West Point Military Academy, in 1818, and became a Lieutenant in the Third United States Artillery. He was born at Cincinnati in 1798, and was a son of Maj-Gen. John S. Gano, who was born in New York City July 14, 1766. The latter was a veteran of the War of 1812, and had command of the frontier forces of the United States for many years, having his headquarters at Cincinnati and Covington, Kentucky. He had previously been active in the Indian Wars, in what was then the Northwest. His death occurred at Covington, Kentucky, in 1822. His wife was Mary Goforth, daughter of Judge William Goforth, a prominent jurist of Philadelphia.

Gen. John S. Gano was a son of Rev. John Gano, who was born at Hopewell, New Jersey, July 23, 1727, and died near Frankfort, Kentucky, in 1804. He served as a Brigade Chaplain during the Revolutionary War, and was frequently a companion of General Washington. His descendants at Evanston still preserve the sword which he wore at the historic crossing of the Delaware, the scabbard of which was lost overboard on that occasion. In 1806 his autobiography was published, which contains many valuable historical reminiscences. His father was Daniel Gano, and his grandfather was named Stephen Gano. They resided upon Staten Island. The last-named came with his father, Francis Gerneaux, to America in 1666. They came from the island of Jersey, and settled at New Rochelle, New York, which is now one of the most delightful resident districts of Staten Island. Francis Gerneaux was a French Huguenot, and was driven from his native land by religious persecution. He was possessed of considerable means, and chartered the ship in which he and his family came to America. He lived to the extreme age of one hundred and three years, thus enjoying for many years the religious liberty which he sought in leaving his native home. A number of his descendants participated in the Revolutionary War, and one of them helped to found the Order of the Cincinnati, the first military order established in the United States. His later posterity includes a number of ministers of the Gospel, and other professional men.

Soon after locating at Oakton, Mrs. Frances M. Iglehart organized a Baptist Sunday-school in the schoolhouse near her home, and superintended the same for many years. She subsequently organized a Baptist Church Society in the same neighborhood, utilizing a building on her own premises as a chapel, in which services were regularly held until 1861. At that date she was the leading spirit in, and a liberal contributor toward, the construction of the first Baptist Church of Evanston, which was located at the northeast corner of Church Street and Hinman Avenue, and subsequently removed to its present site on Chicago Avenue. She will ever be remembered as the founder of that society, and as a most earnest and zealous Christian worker. Her death occurred in 1886, at the age of sixty-seven years.

Four of her children attained mature years, and are still living. Nicholas Gano, the eldest, is a well-known citizen of Evanston. Ellen G. is the widow of Orrin F. Booth, and resides at Hammond, Indiana. Kate N. is the wife of Holmes Hoge, of Evanston; and Anna V. is Mrs. I. H. Odell, of Lincoln, Nebraska.

Colonel Iglehart was a personal friend of Abraham Lincoln, who reposed great confidence in him, and during the early days of the Great Rebellion he was for a time in Government service in Washington and the state of Maryland. Throughout his private and public career, he set an example to which his posterity may ever point with pride and satisfaction.

– Submitted by Sherri Hessick on November 22, 2008.

 

DISCLAIMER:  The submitter is not related to the subject of this biography nor is she related to anyone mentioned in the biography.