FRANCIS B. ALDERSON.
Francis B. Alderson, one of Macoupin county's native sons who engages in general farming and stock-raising on a quarter of section 17, North Otter township, is meeting with a goodly measure of success, both branches of his business having proven to be very lucrative. His natal day was the 9th of October, 1876, and his parents were W. C. and Lucretia Almira (Rafferty) Alderson. The family of Mr. and Mrs. Alderson numbered ten: one who died in infancy; John H., an extensive landowner residing near Houston, Texas; Warner J., who is also a resident of Texas; another who died in infancy; William E., who is living at Virden; Etta, the deceased wife of William R. Riffey, of Macoupin county; Mary E., who is the wife of Charles Brennan, now making her home in Virden; Ella M., who married H. H. Chaffin, of Virden; Francis B., our subject; and Iva M., the wife of John G. Clemmons of Jacksonville, Illinois. The father for many years was engaged in agricultural pursuits in this county, but he retired to Virden in 1892, and there he and his wife continue to reside. Their history is more fully treated elsewhere in this work under Mr. Alderson's name.
The major portion of the life of Francis B. Alderson has been spent on a farm, with the work of which he became familiar in his boyhood and youth. His education was completed in the high school of Virden, and terminating his studies at the age of sixteen he worked with his brother for four years. When he was twenty years of age he took charge of the farm on which he is now residing, operating it for six years. At the expiration of that period he withdrew from agricultural pursuits and went to Virden, where for three and a half years he operated an elevator. He subsequently engaged in the grocery business, but disposing of the same at the end of eighteen months he returned to farming. He bought another tract of land, containing one hundred and five acres, adjoining his quarter section, and for two years thereafter cultivated the entire two hundred and sixty-five acres. His later purchase he then disposed of and since has devoted his energies to the cultivation of his original tract only. Mr. Alderson has always done a great deal of stock feeding, this undertaking having netted him a very gratifying income.
It was on the 24th of February, 1897, that Miss Lora Dell Wilhite became Mrs. Francis B. Alderson. She is a daughter of Alonzo and Elizabeth (Lanham) Wilhite. Mr. and Mrs. Alderson were the parents of one child, Lola Fern, who was born on the 16th of February, 1898, and died on the 30th of November, 1905.
Both Mr. and Mrs. Alderson affiliate with the Christian church, while he is also identified with the Masonic fraternity. His political preference is for the democratic party, but he has never been an aspirant to public honors or the emoluments of office, having led a somewhat retiring life, devoting his entire attention to the direction of his personal interests. Nevertheless he takes an active interest in all vital community affairs, recognizing the responsibilities of citizenship by giving his support and encouragement to every progressive movement inaugurated.