RS. P. A. TROWER is the widow of the late Hon. T. B. Trower, and one of the influential residents of Charleston. Mrs. Trower is the daughter of Judge Jacob and Sinia (Clark) Cutler. Her grandfather, Benjamin Cutler, was one of three brothers, who came from England to America in the old Colonial days, the other brothers being John and Jacob Cutler. John came West, and no tidings ever returned of him; whether he met his death at the hand of some treacherous Indian foe, was slain in battle, or perished on the plains, was never known. Jacob settled in Virginia, and Benjamin in Maryland, where he became the owner of thirty square miles of land. He subsequently removed to Virginia, and spent the remainder of his life there. His family consisted of five children. |
Judge Cutler was born in Maryland, June 9, 1770. His wife, Sinia Clark, was born July 1. 1795. She was the daughter of Andrew and Nancy (Fitzpatrick) Clark, the former a native of England and the latter of Scotland. They came to America in early life, and their marriage took place in Virginia. Subsequently they removed to Kentucky and thence to Indiana, where Mr. Clark carried on an extensive farming business. They passed the remainder of their lives in that State, and reared a family of eight children, none of whom are now living. Judge Cutler removed from Maryland to Virginia, thence to Kentucky and thence to Indiana. He was there engaged in the mercantile business, and was for many years Judge of the Circuit Court. He possessed great executive ability, and was successful in all the enterprises he undertook. He invested largely in real estate and became the owner of thousands of acres of land. Fortune smiled upon his pathway, at every step enabling him to amass great wealth. But he regarded himself as a steward, who must give an account of his possessions. He was generous to his friends and benevolent toward the poor. He was warmly interested in promoting the spiritual and material welfare of the Methodist Church, of which both himself and his wife were prominent members. In business and social circles he was respected and beloved by all who knew him.
Judge Cutler came to Illinois in 1828, and for a time resided in Edgar County, and thence removed to Shelbyville. His family consisted of nine children, four of whom are still living, as follows: Nancy, the wife of William Shaw, a resident of Missouri; Polly Ann, now Mrs. Trower, the subject of this sketch; Otway, a resident of Ft. Madison, Iowa, and Rebecca, now Mrs. Barlow Espy, likewise a resident of Ft. Madison, Iowa. Her husband was killed at Chickamauga during the Civil War. The lives of all the children have been crowned with prosperity and success. The death of Judge Cutler occurred March 5, 1863, and that of his widow Nov. 3, 1872.
Mrs. Trower’s marriage to Dr. T. B. Trower took place Dec. 21, 1833, at Shelby ville, Shelby Co., Ill. Dr. Trower was born Nov. 15, 1809, in Albermarle, Va., and at the age of nineteen commenced the study of medicine in Bloomfield, Ky., with Drs. Beamiss and Merryfield, spending three years under their instructions. In 1830, he came to Illinois and practiced medicine six years in Shelbyville. He then removed to Charleston, and was engaged in the mercantile business three years, after which he resumed his profession. His practice was large and lucrative, extending throughout this county and into several others. He was a member of the Esculapian Medical Society and the Wabash Valley and State Medical Societies. He was industrious and untiring in the discharge of his professional duties, and acquired a large fortune. His mental endowments were of a high order, and skill in his profession was united with rare business abilities. He was President of the Moultrie County Bank, of Sullivan, Ill., and Vice President of the First National Bank of Charleston.
During his residence in Shelbyville, Dr. T. represented the county in the State Legislature, was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention in 1847, and likewise represented Coles County in the Legislature one year. On coming to Charleston he purchased a house and three lots on the northeast side of the courthouse square, and erected a brick block, which is now used for the post-office, and also his fine brick residence on the block adjoining. He was also engaged in the real-estate business, and at the time of his death was an extensive land-owner. He possessed a broad and liberal spirit, and throughout life his habits were temperate almost to abstemiousness. He never made use of tobacco in any form, nor drank any spirituous liquor, and was never known to be idle. Such a life is more eloquent than a thousand temperance lectures. He was a member of the Presbyterian Church, but his generosity in supporting the cause of Christ was not limited by a narrow denominational spirit. He belonged to the Brotherhood of Christ, and wherever the Master’s work was to be done, he was ready with a helping hand. He donated a lot, and gave $1,000 toward the erection of the Methodist Church, and was ever generous in affording aid to all worthy objects. He died April 15, 1878.
Dr. and Mrs. Trower had a family of eight children, four of whom are now living, as follows: Amerial, the wife of Dr. L. L. Silverthorn, a resident of Charleston; Sinia, the wife of Mr. Norfolk, a resident of Charleston, is the mother of two children—Mary and Thomas; Sally, the wife of Mr. Sayer, a resident of Chicago, is the mother of two sons—Rockwell and Edward; and Dr. Xavier B., a resident of Pana, Christian Co., Ill., married Miss Annie Pottenger, of Kentucky.
Mrs. Trower is a lady of culture and refinement, and also bears the responsibility of possessing great riches. She is the owner of several farms in Coles and Sullivan Counties, a block of buildings in Charleston, is a stockholder in the First National Bank, and owns property in Chicago.