Henry B. Davis
Henry B. Davis, a minister of the Baptist Church in Bluford, has devoted
the greater part of his life to the salvation of others and in his chosen field has
greatly prospered. Not only is he highly esteemed by those of his own church but
his name is a synonym for honesty and upright character wherever he is known.
Our subject is the son of David B. and Christina (Peel) Davis, natives of North Carolina,
and was born October 31, 1840. The parents were married in their native state,
where they reared a family of three children: Mary A.; Riley; and Jasper.
In 1839 they came west to Illinois and located in Weber Township, Jefferson County,
and in the course of time had eight children added to their family. Bloomon is
residing in Salem, Marion County, this state; David makes his home in Ogden, Utah;
Evan is a farmer near Centralia, near which place James also makes his home; Melissa
is the wife of Jasper Crane, of Marion County, and Artie is now Mrs. James Huff, of
Weber township; Jasper and Riley died when quite young.
The father of our subject came to Weber Township when the dwellings of the inhabitants
were few and far between, and here made his home until 1892. He was a popular and
energetic citizen and accumulated considerable property, his success, however, was
not attained without difficulties, and his life verified the old belief that everything
is possible to the man possessing energy and good judgment.
Reece Davis, the paternal grandfather of our subject, was a native of North Carolina,
and like many of his descendants, also came to Illinois, where he departed this life
at the advanced age of eighty-four years. He reared a large family of children,
nearly all of whom lived to remarkable ages. Great Grand-father David Davis was
born in Wales and came to this country prior to the Revolutionary War, at which time
he located in Virginia, where his family of children were reared to mature years.
He was a sea-faring man and the owner of a vessel which plied the Atlantic, carrying
people from the Old Country to the United States. His sons figured prominently in
the affairs of Virginia, as did the family of Richardsons, from which the great
grand-mother of our subject was descended. Reece Davis was a planter in North Carolina,
where he and several of his brothers were large slave-holders. The representatives
of the Davis family in this country are quite numerous and many of them took an active
part in defending the Old flag during the late war.
H.B. Davis, of this sketch grew to manhood on his father's farm and being the eldest
son living was obliged to work very hard in clearing and opening up the new home.
He attended the common schools, and in 1864 became a student in Shurtleff College,
in Upper Alton. Later he entered the Chicago University, from which institution he
was graduated with the Class of 71, and for fifteen years thereafter taught school
in this and adjoining counties. He has also been engaged for a number of years as
a minister of the Baptist Church and is a popular man, an energetic citizen and a
self-sacrificing minister. He is a strong believer in Prohibition principles, which
part he supports by his influence and vote.
Submitted by Sandy Bauer