From "Portrait and Biographical Record of Tazewell & Mason Co. Illinois"
pub. Chicago: Biographical Publishing Co. 1894
CHRISTOPHER SHAFFER. This gentleman is one of the many who have spent the greater portion of their lives in developing the country in order that their children and grandchildren might enjoy the advantages which they themselves were denied. In truth, we to-day are the "heirs of all ages" and profit by the labor and self denial of the hard working classes of times past. Our
subject is one of the wealthy agriculturists of Tazewell County, and is now living on section 23, Morton Township, where he has a valuable estate.
A native of Greenbrier County, Va., our subject was born April 29, 1813, to Christopher and Mary (Fisher) Shaffer, natives of Pennsylvania. The former was reared on a farm in the Keystone State, and when a young man emigrated to Virginia, where he married. He was a miller by trade and followed that occupation through life, together with that of farming. He was twice married, and by his first wife became the father of four children, George, Peter (a soldier in the War of 1812), Elizabeth and Mary. By his union with the mother of our subject there were born three children, Phoebe, Phillip and Christopher.
About 1825 Christopher Shaffer, Sr., emigrated with his family to Franklin County, Ohio, where he lived for a number of years. Later he came to this county, making his home with our subject until his decease, which occurred at the advanced age of ninety-three years and six months. At the time the family located in the Buckeye State our subject was a lad of thirteen years
and soon began to make his own way in the world, being first employed as a farm hand. He received his education in the subscription schools of that day, and when reaching his majority received as pay for his labors only $10 a month. He was very economical and industrious, and from this small salary was enabled to save money. He spent one year working in a tan yard, and although becoming quite proficient in that business, followed it only a short time.
A year after becoming of age Mr. Shaffer married Miss Elizabeth, daughter of Emmer and Elizabeth (Huff) Cox. The lady was born in Ohio, November 25, 1812, while her parents were natives of Virginia and were farmers by occupation. After his marriage, Mr. Shaffer began farming on rented land in Franklin County, but soon came with his family to this county, where he was convinced he could better his financial condition. The trip was made overland in 1841, and all their worldly possessions were placed in a wagon drawn by four horses, and Mr. Shaffer says that even then it was not very
heavily loaded. By trading one of his teams on his arrival in this county he was able to make a payment on a quarter-section of land which he had purchased, and which is included in his present fine estate. He now owns four hundred acres of choice land in Morton Township, upon which he settled in 1842, the family than making their home in a hewed log cabin which he erected.
Eight children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Shaffer, of whom Orlando and Phoebe are deceased. Lavina married William Huxtable; Eliza is the wife of Joseph Walden; the others are, Sarah J., Lewis M., William and John H. Our subject is a member of the Baptist Church, with which he has been connected since 1840, and has held the office of Deacon for over a quarter of a century. His estimable wife departed this life September 9, 1886. Mr. Shaffer has sixteen grandchildren and twelve great-grandchildren living. He is one of the best citizens of the county, and during his long career here not a word
could ever be said against his honesty and uprightness.
Submitted by Betty Doremus