THOMAS J. JONES, a self-made and enterprising farmer whose home is situated on section 16, Brighton Township, is a native of Wales. He was born in Radnershire, September 11, 1840, and is a son of James Jones, who was also born in that county and there grew to manhood, becoming a first-class farmer. He wedded Mary Jones, who, though of the same name, was no relation. However, she was born and reared in the same parish as her husband. Unto them were born eight children, three sons and five daughters, all of whom are yet living and are married. The three sons only came to this country and all are successful farmers of Brighton Township. The mother died at the age of fifty years in her native land, after which with his two sons, Thomas and John, the father emigrated to America in 1861, taking passage on a steamer "City of Washington," which dropped anchor in the harbor of New York on the 1st of August. They came direct to Brighton, Ill., where the sons have since lived and made good properties. The father afterward returned for a few years to England but once more came to this country and died at the home of our subject on the 7th of June, 1874, at the age of seventy-seven years. In the county of his nativity he was widely and favorably known as one of the best and most successful farmers. In religious belief, both he and his wife were Baptists.
Thomas J. Jones, whose name heads this notice was reared to habits of thrift and industry such as would prepare him for a successful business career. He was yet a single man when he crossed the Atlantic to America and some six years later he was united in marriage with Miss Margaret Green, a native of the province of Nassau, Germany, born December 28, 1842. Her parents, John and Maria (Kretzer) Green, were also born and reared in that locality and when they had attained to mature years were married. One child was born unto them in the fatherland - Mrs. Jones, wife of our subject, and they then came to America, crossing the Atlantic in the sailing vessel "Festaw," which sailed from Antwerp and after twenty-eight days reached New York City. Their first location was made in Ohio, but after two years they came to Illinois, settling in Hardin County. Another two years passed by and they then removed to Madison County, where the succeeding twelve years of their lives were passed.. At the expiration of that time they took up their residence in Bunker Hill Township, this county, where Mrs. Green died on the 1st of January, 1888, at the age of eighty-seven years. Mr. Green is yet living on his old farm in Bunker Hill Township and for a man of his advanced age is wonderfully preserved. In religious belief he is a Presbyterian, his wife having also adhered to that faith. In their family were three children of whom Mrs. Jones is the eldest; Lewis, the son is married and follows farming in Brighton Township; and Christina is keeping house for her father.
For some time before her marriage, Mrs. Jones earned her own living as a domestic. By their union have been born eight children, six of whom are yet living - William T., Anna M., Emma F., James A., Louis H. and Frank E. John and Edward are now deceased. In politics, Mr. Jones is a stalwart supporter of the Democracy. He and his estimable wife, by their unassuming, yet upright lives have won the confidence and regard of all with whom they have come in contact. The farm upon which they reside and where they have a pleasant home consists of two hundred and thirty-five acres of highly improved land on section 9, 10, 14 and 16, Brighton Township. We have before spoken of Mr. Jones as a self-made man, a title which he well deserves for his possessions have all been acquired through his own efforts, being the result of his industry, enterprise, perseverance, and good management.