SAMUEL HALL. Prominent among the residents of North Otter Township, we are pleased to mention the name which appears at the head of this sketch. A view of his charming home is also shown on another page. The beautiful farm, handsome residence and delightful surroundings attract the eye of every stranger who visits this section of the county. Those who enter the hospitable door notice within a harmonious home which corresponds well with the beauty of the exterior, and find a mental and social stimulus in the intelligent society of this household.
Thomas Hall, father of our subject, was born in North Carolina, May 28, 1792. He was the son of George Hall, a native of England, who came to this country in the early Colonial days and died in North Carolina. Mary McVey, the mother of our subject was a native of Tennessee, her natal day being February 23, 1797. She lived in her native home until she was married and later the family removed to Illinois. Her parents, however, had died two years previous to this removal, and she has lost much of the records of their lives.
Thomas Hall and Mary McVey were married near Duck River, not far from Nashville, Tenn. After their marriage in 1815 they remained in that vicinity for a short time, and then emigrated to the Prairie State, coming here in December, 1817, and settling on what is known as the American Bottoms, which are situated below Alton. They lived there until the fall of 1818, when they came to Greene County, and built a small log house about five miles southwest of Carrollton. Here for many years they made their happy home until death severed them March 17, 1855, upon which date the husband passed away from earth. The widow continued to live on the old homestead for about a year, but it was no longer home for her, now that her companion had departed. She has since made her home with her children, and is now living at an advanced age. Of her nine children, seven grew to maturity.
The subject of this biographical sketch was next to the eldest in age in this household, and was born in Greene County, Ill., January 7, 1822. There he made his home through his boyhood and through all the years of his early manhood. His education was received in the district schools and he was faithfully attentive not only there but in his farm duties, and thus grew to be a young man who was looked up to among his comrades as a progressive and thoughtful citizen. When about thirty-three years old he removed, in February, 1855, to this county, settling in North Otter township, making his home where he now resides.
The marriage of Mr. Hall in Greene County, Ill., February 27, 1850, united him with Miss Evaline Reynolds, a daughter of John and Catherine (Clepper) Reynolds, Mr. Reynolds was a native of Virginia, and his wife of Tennessee, although but little is known of their early history. She died near Greenfield, Greene County, about 1836, when her daughter was but a little child; the father survived until the spring of 1858, when he passed from life near Carrollton, Greene County. Of a family of nine children, Mrs. Hall was the fifth and was born at the home in Greene County, November 9, 1830, and there made her home until her marriage.
Nine beautiful and promising children blest the marriage of our subject and his wife. Their eldest child, Laura, died at the age of seven years, and was deeply mourned by her affectionate parents. John T. married Miss Lucy E. Compton, and is a farmer in North Otter; Mary L., an accomplished and refined lady, still resides at home; Sophronia E. is the wife of Eber Shroyer, a farmer in North Otter. Then came four sons, Charles C., Enoch A., Luther and Robert P., of whom three are living, while Luther died at the age of eleven months and another child, unnamed, died in early infancy.
Mr. Hall has made farming his life work and with it has mingled stock raising to a considerable extent. In all his work he has been successful, for he has based it upon an intelligent understanding of the soil and its products and on the qualities of the stock he undertook to raise. His fine farm comprises two hundred acres of rich and productive soil, and it is ornamented and made more profitable by the planting of shade and fruit trees. A comfortable and commodious farm house and other substantial buildings speak aloud of the thrift and prosperity of the owner.
The offices of Highway Commissioner and School Director have been satisfactorily filled by our subject, who in his politics is a still, old fashioned Jacksonian Democrat, believing that the doctrines which were promulgated by Jefferson, the author of the Declaration of Independence, are good enough for these modern days. He is an active worker in his party where his opinions are looked up to and his judgment approved. Both he and his excellent wife are true helpers in the cause of religion, and consistent members of the Baptist Church. The sons of this family are making their mark among the young men of their community. Charles C., is now a physician, graduated at Shurtleff College, Upper Alton, and also at Rush Medical College, at Chicago, and was honored by being appointed to deliver the valedictory address before his class at Rush in March, 1891. Enoch A. is a farmer and resides at home. Every member of this honored household helps to sustain the reputation of the family for intelligence, character and laudable ambition.