HUGH CALDWELL - This gentleman, who for several years has been postmaster at Staunton, comes from Scotch-Irish stock. He is a native of county Derry, Ireland, where he was born April 7, 1805. His ancestors were among the adherents of the Presbyterian faith, who emigrated from Scotland to the north of Ireland at an early date. His father, Hugh Caldwell, was the owner of a farm. The subject of this sketch was the youngest of seven children, and lived in Ireland till his emigration to America in 1837. The neighborhood where he lived afforded good advantages for obtaining an education. He was in an apothecary's shop for a short time, it being his father's intention to educate him for a physician. In the year 1831 he married Eliza Jane Caldwell. In 1837 he emigrated to America. He landed at Philadelphia, and after a short stay in that city came to Illinois and settled in Staunton township, where his brother, George Caldwell, had settled a few years previously. He began improving 160 acres of land, and his house at that time was the only one between Staunton and Silver creek. His wife died in 1858. His second marriage was in the year 1861 to Mrs. Ann Clark. In the year 1859 he moved from his farm to the town of Staunton, where he engaged in the milling business with his son-in-law, J. S. Stephenson, and built the flouring mill which stood on the site of the one now owned by Woodward & Dwight.
He was appointed postmaster by President Johnson in 1870, and has since filled the duties of that position in a manner satisfactory to the people of Staunton. His three children living are Eliza, wife of J. S. Stephenson, residing in Missouri; John Caldwell, of Litchfield; and Willie, the youngest son, who is at home. Mr. Caldwell was originally a democrat, and became a republican when he saw the Southern democracy had determined to disrupt the Union. He has been a constant resident of the county since 1837, during which time, with the exception of occasional periods of a couple of months, he has not been absent from the township.