Published by Brink, McDonough & Co., Philadelphia
HISTORY OF MACOUPIN COUNTY, ILLINOIS
DESCRIPTIVE OF ITS SCENERY,
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF SOME OF ITS PROMINENT MEN AND PIONEERS.
HENRY W. BURTON may be regarded as one of the early settlers of Macoupin county. He is a native of Connecticut, and was born August 14th, 1819. The family is of English origin. Olney Burton, his father, was a native of Rhode Island. He emigrated to the former state in the year 1800. He was a farmer by occupation. He married Abigail Burlingame. Henry W., is the youngest of eight children, five of whom are still living. He spent his boyhood days at work upon the farm, and attended the excellent schools of his native state in the winter season, until he was sixteen years of age, when he commenced to learn the carpenter's trade, and served an apprenticeship of four years in the business. In 1840, he, like thousands of others, was seized with Western fever and a desire to emigrate to Illinois, which was then the frontier of civilization. He accordingly came west, and stopped at Alton, Illinois, with an elder brother who had preceded him the year before. Soon after, he came up into Macoupin county, and settled in Woodburn, where he worked at his trade until 1849, when the gold excitement broke out in California. He laid down the hammer and plane, and in company with others, started in ox-teams by the overland route for the land of gold and speedy fortune. In due time he arrived in California, where he remained engaged in mining until the fall of 1850, when he returned to Woodburn, in this county. He then engaged in general merchandizing in Woodburn until after the completion of the railroad to Bunker Hill, when he removed his stock of goods to the latter place, and continued the business until the breaking out of the war, when he commenced buying and shipping grain, in addition to his general merchandizing. He continued for four years, when he sold out. In 1868, he received the nomination for the office of circuit clerk at the hands of the democratic party, and at the ensuing election in November following, was elected by a handsome majority. At the expiration of his term of office, he was again nominated and elected, and remained in office until 1876. It will be readily known that Mr. Burton is a democrat. He cast his first vote for James K. Polk, for President, in 1844, and since that time has never faltered in duty to the party. He is not a member of any religious organization. He was married to Miss Cornelia Rider, who was a native of Illinois. Three children were born to them two of whom are living.
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