WILLIAM M. CHILES, one of the prosperous and thorough going farmers of Bird Township, makes his home on section 12. His father was the late John G. Chiles, a native of Virginia, in which State his mother was also born. Her maiden name was Elizabeth F. Wills. The family removed from Kentucky to this county in 1833 and settled on the line between North and South Palmyra. Here they resided until 1845, and then removed to this township. They had ten children of whom our subject was the eighth in number. The father died in 1853, the mother in 1875. The father was a soldier of the War of 1812, and his father, James Chiles, was a Revolutionary soldier.
William Chiles was born in this county June 2, 1834, and he has always resided near the old homestead. He has been engaged largely in farming and stock-raising. In 1857 he began dealing extensively in stock and is now one of the oldest shippers to the Chicago market, whilst at the same time he has carried on his general farming operation. The buildings on his property are complete and commodious and are a credit to the township. He owns three hundred and thirty-five acres of land, which he has in a splendid state of cultivation.
Mr. Chiles' first marriage took place January 6, 1859, in Greene County, with Miss Mary M. Bradley, a native of that county. She became the mother of six children, George, who married Mattie Aulabough, and died in Nilwood Township in August, 1884; Robert E., who married Miss Ida Bird; Lillie E., the wife of George W. Denby; William M. Jr., who married Miss Ella Wade; Thomas W., who married Miss Eva Adams, and Charles E. The mother of these children was an earnest and conscientious member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. She died September 11, 1871.
The second marriage of our subject was solemnized in Carlinville. The bride was Miss Christina D. Morse, a native of the State of Missouri. Five children have blessed this happy union, namely: Flora M., Walter, Frank S., Grace D., and one who died in infancy. In politics Mr. Chiles has ever been identified with the Republican party, but he has never been an office-seeker, although he has served his township in the office of Assessor. Both he and his excellent wife are faithful and efficient members of the Baptist Church, and the family is one which is highly esteemed by all who know them. Our subject's brother James was First Lieutenant of Company F, One Hundred and Twenty-second Regiment and was in the last engagement of the Rebellion; his youngest brother, G. W. L. Chiles, died at Camp Butler; the eldest brother died at Palmyra, this county.