Portrait & Biographical Record Winnebago & Boone Cos., IL. Chicago: Biographical Pub. Co., 1892, pp 1313-1314
John BOYD, a well-known citizen of Rockford [Winnebago County, IL], passed away 26 Jan 1892. He was a pioneer of the city, having come hither in 1843, and for a time clerked for Mr. MARSH. He then left the city, but returned in 1848 and entered the employ of Mr. HORSEMAN, a dry goods dealer. In 1856 he resigned that position, and in Sep of that year embarked in business for himself as a merchant, under the firm name of BOYD & BAXTER.
Some six years later, Mr. BOYD commenced to travel for a lamp supply company of Chicago, in which position he remained for more than 20 years, enjoying the unlimited confidence of his house and becoming well known throughout a wide scope of country. On account of ill health, he resigned the position in 1888 and retired from active business. He was intimately associated with Rockford and its people, and not only maintained a deep interest in the development of the city, but contributed untiringly to the promotion of its welfare.
Mr. BOYD was born in Chatham, Columbia County, NY, 16 Sep 1828, and was reared in his native place, receiving his education there and in Catskill and Erie Counties. He was the son of George BOYD, a native of Belfast, Ireland, who in turn was the son of Thomas BOYD, whose death occurred near Belfast when he was quite old. By occupation he was a farmer, and was descended from Scotch-Irish ancestry. His wife was of a similar lineage and was the daughter of an officer in the British army, who served during the Revolutionary War and was at Charleston, MA, when the tea was thrown overboard into the Boston Harbor by the Colonists.
In the Emerald Isle [Ireland] George BOYD grew to a vigorous manhood and became familiar with farming pursuits. In his native country he was married to Miss Sarah RUSSELL, an intelligent lady and a native of the North of Ireland, her ancestors having been prominent citizens of Belfast. After the birth of their first child Thomas (now deceased), George and Sarah BOYD emigrated to the U. S. in the early 1850's and settled in Columbia County, NY, where the father followd his trade of a saddler. After living in NY State for some years, they came in 1846 to Rockford, where Mrs. BOYD died 05 Jul 1852 at the age of 56 years. After the death of his first wife, he was again married to a Rockford lady who is now deceased.
In his religious convictions Mr. BOYD was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and politically adhered to the principles of the Democratic party. Only two of his children are now living: Colonel Wesley, of Kokomo [Summit County], CO, and Mrs. John A. DAVIS, of Chicago. Colonel Wesley BOYD served throughout the Rebellion and at its close was honorably discharged as Colonel of the 52nd IL Infantry. A brother-in-law of our subject, Major Samuel PEARSON, of Chicago, also served throughout the Civil War as a member of an IA regiment.
In Fredonia [Chautauqua County], NY, 03 Oct 1851, the marriage of John BOYD and Miss Elizabeth A. MOORE took place. Mrs. BOYD was born in Monroe County, NY, 14 Nov 1831, and received an academic education in Fredonia. Her parents, Josiah and Elizabeth (ROOTS) MOORE, were natives respectively of Fabius [Onondaga County] and Hamilton [Madison County], NY, and were married in the former village. Mr. MOORE [p 1314] followed the occupation of a farmer until his death, which occurred in Fredonia in 1860, at the age of 63 years. In his political belief he was a Whig, and religiously was identified with the Baptist Church. After his death his widow came to WI, where she died at the age of 80 years. She was an active member of the Baptist Church, and the daughter of Rev. P. P. ROOTS, a prominent Baptist minister and an evangelist of fame. He was born in 1765, and died in NY State, 26 Sep 1828. His wife, whose maiden name was Elizabeth KEEP, died some years afterward at the age of 84 years.
The grandfather of Mrs. BOYD, Josiah MOORE, Sr., was born in CT in 1765, and married Miss Abigail DEWEY, their union being solemnized at Harrington, CT. They became early settlers of Fabius, Onondaga County, NY, and their son, Josiah Jr., was the first white child born there. Mrs. BOYD is the 4th among six children, all of whom survive but the eldest son. She is a lady of prominence in Rockford, takes an active interest in all charitable measures, and is highly esteemed in social circles. Mr. and Mrs. BOYD became the parents of four children, only one of whom is living. Mary E., Eva J., and Addie died when small. John M. is a commercial traveler for the Rockford Watch Company, with headquarters in this city. He married Julia R. BERG, whose former home was in Grand Rapids, MI. Mrs. BOYD sympathizes with the progressive views of the Rev. Dr. KERR, and is identified with his church, the Christian Union, at Rockford.
Submitted by Cathy Kubly.