GIDEON FORWOOD. The name at the head of this sketch is that of one of the most substantial farmers of the township. His place is located on section 2, of Shipman Township. It is conspicuous for the class of good buildings that it has, and also for the manner in which it is improved. He was born in the State of Delaware, September 14, 1833, in Newcastle County, Brandywine Hundred, where he was reared until he reached manhood's years. When he reached his majority, in company with three of his brothers he came to Illinois and settled in Shipman Township, this county.
On coming to this State, the four Forwood brothers clubbed their resources and engaged in farming, first renting land. They continued in this way for about six years, afterward purchasing eighty acres, which they together cultivated until our subject was married, October 19, 1865, to Miss Melissa B. Armour. The lady was a native of Madison County, where she was born November 25, 1848. Her parents were John and Ann Eliza (Rhodes) Armour. Her paternal grandfather was William Armour, a native of Kentucky, and her grandmother, Elizabeth (Watkins) Armour, was also of Kentucky. Her paternal great-grandparents came from Greyson County, Ky., to what is now Greene County, Ill., early in the ‘30s. They then removed to Madison County, and thence to Macoupin County, where they passed away from this life.
Mr. and Mrs. Armour had seven sons and one daughter; John was the fifth of the family and his birth took place in Hart County, Ky., August 1, 1820. He started out in life for himself when sixteen years of age, and for eight years was employed in making brick at Alton, Ill. He was married to Ann Eliza Rhodes who was the eldest daughter of the late Jesse Rhodes. In 1844 they settled in Chesterfield Township, where they remained for two years, then removed to a few miles distant from St. Louis, where they lived from 1846 to 1849. John Armour was then persuaded to return to Chesterfield Township, where he has since been a resident. His wife died in June, 1887.
After the marriage of our subject he settled in Chesterfield Township, where he remained for five years, and then located on section 2, of Shipman Township, where he has since been a resident. Mr. and Mrs. Forwood have been the parents of six children. They are: Virginia, George, Anna E., William G., Oscar and Elmer O. Of these the eldest daughter died in infancy. George instituted his own home and fireside, making mistress of it Miss Maggie Rice. Anna E. became the wife of Hubert Haycraft. Oscar died in infancy.
The gentleman of whom we write has made agriculture his calling during the greater part of his life. His farm has good buildings that are kept in excellent condition. He is the fortunate owner of three hundred as fertile and well-cultivated acres as are in the county. In politics our subject is a Democrat. Both he and Mrs. Forwood are members of the Baptist Church, but are liberal in their views.