Transcribed by: Mary Ann KaylorPage 142
Lieut. ARTHUR D. COMER was born January 24th, 1842, in Knox county, East Tennessee. His father was a native of Virginia. The Comers on the paternal side are of Scotch descent. Lavina Bell was the maiden name of the mother of the subject of this sketch. She was born in Tennessee. She died November 15th, 1874. Five children are living, the offspring of this marriage. Their names are Samuel, Elmira, wife of S. L. Loveless, Arthur D., Parthenia, wife of J. Q. Adams, and Addison. The father removed from Tennessee to Macoupin county in 1844, and rented land in Western Mound township. In 1854 he came into Bird township and purchased land, and has resided here ever since. He married again July 9th, 1877.
The subject of our sketch received his rudimentary education in the common schools of this county. When he was twenty years of age he started in life for himself. He put in a crop. The war broke out, and on the 5th of August, 1862, he enlisted in company "A", 122d regiment Illinois volunteers, Col. John I. Rinaker commanding. The regiment rendezvoused at camp Palmer, and from there were ordered to report to Columbus, Kentucky, and then were ordered to Trenton, Tennessee, where the regiment was brigaded and attached to the 16th Army Corps. The command proceeded to Jackson and from there to Parker's Cross Roads, where the regiment engaged in its first battle, and lost heavily in men, killed and wounded. After the engagement the command that went after Price through Missouri then back to Nashville, where they fought and annihilated Hood's army. He enlisted as a private soldier, and when the company was organized was elected fifth sergeant, and passed through all the grades to the first lieutenancy of the company, with the exception of the second lieutenancy.
He was with the regiment all the time it was in the service, and fought with his company at Mobile, Spanish Fort, and Fort Blakely, and was mustered out August 5th, 1865, at Springfield, Illinois, having been in the service three years to a day. He then returned home and went to work on a farm, and in January, 1866, purchased one hundred and twenty acres in sections 22 and 23, Bird township, where he has remained ever since. On the 3d of September, 1866, he was united in marriage with Miss Mary L. Peebles, daughter of C. H. and Nancy D. Peebles. Her parents were natives of Kentucky and the northern part of Tennessee. Four children have been born to them, one boy and three girls. Their names are Orrin D., Luella E., Mary H., and Geraldine Comer. Both he and his amiable wife are members of the Baptist Church. In politics Mr. Comer is a staunch republican. He cast his first vote for U. S. Grant in 1868, and ever since has been a strong adherent of that political organization. He has been elected assessor of this township for two terms.