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WILLIAM HIERONYMUS, a prominent agriculturist of Hittle Township, is a representative of one of the honored pioneer families of Tazewell County.  He comes of an old German family, which at an early day removed from Virginia to Kentucky.  His grandfather, Henry, and his father, William, made that hourney in 1805, and there located.  The latter was born in Virginia, February 13, 178, and was a cultured and highly educated gentleman, who was always regarded as a leading citizen of the community in which he made his home.  His wife bore the maiden name of Elvira Darnell, and was born in Georgia, February 8, 1796.   They were married August 14, 1811, and in 1828 cast in their lot with the honored pioneers of Tazewell County.  Their home was a rude log cabin, 16x20 feet, one end of which was entirely taken up by a fireplace, and the smoke made its escape through a clay chimney.  They went all through the experiences and hardships of frontier life, performed the arduous task of developing a new farm, and were worthy pioneer settlers.

With no special advantages in his youth, William Hieronymus grew to manhood.  Although his school privileges were limited, his training at farm work was not meagre, for as soon as old enough to handle the plow he began work in the fields.  In 1848 he was married, the lady of his choice being Miss Lucinda Gardner, a native of Ohio, who during her girlhood came with her parents to Cumberland County, Ill., and at the death of her parents came to Tazewell County.  Eight children graced this union:  Adaline, who died at the age of eighteen; Cynthis, wife of John W. Miller; James, John L. and Alonzo, who follow farming near the old homestead; Ella M., wife of John C. Britt, a farmer of this locality; Nancy J., wife of G. T. Murphy, an agriculturist of the same community, and Maggie, who is deaf and dumb, but was well educated in a mute school.  The children all received good school privileges, and were thus fitted for the practical duties of life.  There are also fourteen grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

The father of our subject died the year previous to the marriage of his sons, who continued to live upon the old farm with their mother until after her death.  In connection with his brother Enoch, William bought the old homestead, but later they divided it. He has accumulated nine hundred acres of fine land, and has given to each of his married children a tract of eighty acres.  His time and attention have been given entirely to farming and stock-raising, and he has won success, not as the result of forunate circumstances, but through hard labor, enterprise and good management.  His prosperity is therefore well deserved, being the just reward of earnest effort.

In early life Mr. Hieronymus was a strong opponent of slavery, and when the Republican party sprang into existence to prevent its further extension, he joined its ranks, and was long one of its supporters.  He now votes with the Prohibition party.  Both he and his wife are members of the Christian Church, and are well worthy of representation in this volume.

Submitted by Betty Doremus