Henry J. HOLTSCLAW, farmer, P.O. Mount Vernon, was born in Barren County, Ky., June 27, 1815, and is a son of James and Rhoda (BROOKSHER) HOLTSCLAW, the latter a native of South Carolina and the former of North Carolina, and his father, Henry HOLTSCLAW, was a genuine Pennsylvania Dutchman, who emigrated to North Carolina and thence to Kentucky. In 1827, both he and his son (father of our subject) came to Illinois and settled in this township (Shiloh), where both died, the latter in 1831 or 1832, and his wife about the year 1860. They were the parents of ten children, only three of whom are living-Mrs. Margaret BOOTH, near Centralia, Ill.; Richard J., residing in Xenia, Clay County; and our subject. Mr. HOLTSCLAW was left to battle for himself at an early age, his father dying soon after his removal to Illinois, and leaving his wife with a large family of children. He had but few chances for recieving an education, as he says it was "root little pig or die." But by the most persevering industry he won his way in the world, and after helping his mother to rear the younger children, he commenced to work for himself. He owns the old homestead, upon which the third generation of the family now lives. It embraces 360 acres of land, well improved and in a fine state of cultivation. Indeed, it is one of the finest forms in the county, and probably the finest barn in the county is on it. Mr. HOLTSCLAW's Pennsylvania Dutch blood shows in this,as it is a maxim with them, that "a good barn will soon pay for a residence, but a fine residence will not pay for a barn." He was married, in 1859, to Miss Elizabeth JOHNSON, a daughter of Rev. Lewis JOHNSON, an early pioneer of Jefferson County. They have four children-Martha Ann, Thomas Jefferson, John Henry and Ida A., all of whom are living. He and his wife are members of the Baptist Church. Mr. HOLTSCLAW has never sought office, but takes an active interest in politics, as all patriotic citizens should, and is a Democrat of the Jackson school. He has great veneration for that old hero of New Orleans, under whom his father served as a soldier. Mr. HOLTSCLAW came here a small boy, when the country was new and wild, and game of all kinds was plenty. He is an old man now, and has seen the country improved and civilized and the wilderness made to rejoice and blossom as the rose. For more then fifty years he has lived upon one place, and by his own hard work has gathered plenty around him, and now in his old age he is prepared to live at ease. 

SOURCE: History of Jefferson County, IL by, William Perrin 1883 
Submitted by: Misty Flannigan 
Sept 6,. 1998 

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