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Chicago: S.J. Clarke Publishing Company

Page 366

ELMER E. DAY, who is successfully engaged in the grocery business in Medora and is one of its highly popular citizens, was born near Jerseyville, in Jersey county, Illinois, January 10, 1863. He is a son of Stephen and Susan (Bell) Day, the former of whom was born in Jersey county April 5, 1840, the latter being a native of Medora. The history of the Day family in America begins with Stephen Day, the great-great-grandfather of our subject, who was a native of County Tipperary, Ireland, and settled in Vermont many years ago. The great-grandfather of our subject was also named Stephen and was born in Vermont before the Revolutionary war. Ira E. Day, the grandfather, was also a native of Vermont and was born about 1790. He was reared in his native state and when a young man came west, settling in 1828 in Jersey county, Illinois, west of the present city of Jerseyville. Here he entered government land and made his home for twenty years. He then moved east of Jerseyville where he purchased two hundred and forty acres of land which is still in possession of the family. He married Miss Martha Hudson who was born in Greene county about 1819 and was the first white child born in this section of the state. It is also thought by some that she was the first white child born in the state of Illinois. The Hudson family came from Kentucky and was among the very early settlers of Greene county. Ira E. Day died in 1862, being then more than seventy years of age. He was highly successful as a farmer and ranked as one of the leading citizens of the county.

Stephen E. Day, the father of our subject, was educated in the public schools and continued on the home farm until after he was married to Miss Susan Bell, the ceremony taking place March 1, 1861. He rented land on his own account for a number of years and in 1886 moved to Medora, where he has since been engaged in the livery business. Mrs. Day is a daughter of Harry and Nancy (Rockabaugh) Bell and comes from an old Virginia family whose home was near Culpepper Courthouse. To Mr. and Mrs. Stephen E. Day have been born seven children, two of whom died in infancy. The others are: Elmer E., of this review; William, who married Zoa Steed, of Medora, and now resides in Colorado Springs, Colorado; Chilton H., now in the dry-goods business in Medora, who married Nellie Steed and has two children; Ira Edwin, who married Ella Long and makes his home in Medora; and Herbert L., who married Nellie Winters and is a resident of Alton, Illinois.

Mr. Day of this review possessed advantages of education in the public schools of Jerseyville. He continued with his parents on the home farm until twenty-one years of age, and then rented land and farmed on his own account for two years. At the end of this time he purchased twenty acres in Jerseyville which he planted in fruit, and for nine years devoted his attention to the fruit business. In 1897 he disposed of his place and moved to Medora, where he purchased the livery barn of William Day and for eight years applied himself successfully to the livery business. He then entered the grocery business in which he has since been engaged.

On the 20th of January, 1885, Mr. Day was married to Miss Kate Pitts, a daughter of Richard and Clara (Pitts) Pitts, the former of whom was born at Sutton Crosses, Lincolnshire, England, in 1834. The grandparents of Mrs. Day on the paternal side were William and Sarah (Barton) Pitts, of Northamptonshire, England. The Pitts family has been known in England for many generations. The grandfather on the maternal side was Shadrach Pitts, also of Northamptonshire, and the maiden name of his wife was Eliza Humberstone. The grandfather, paternal and maternal, were cousins. Three children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Day, namely: Lola F., who married Herbert E. Ruyle, of Raymond, Illinois, and has one child, Elbert H.; and Gertrude Barton and Leita A., both of whom are living at home.

Mr. Day is well known in fraternal circles and holds membership in the Knights of Pythias and the Mutual Protective League. Politically he is an earnest supporter of the democratic party. He served as supervisor of Chesterfield township and as chairman of the board of supervisors of Macoupin county for three terms out of four, his administration being highly satisfactory to taxpayers of the county. He was elected supervisor by a handsome majority in a township that is regarded as a republican stronghold. His name has been prominently mentioned in connection with other offices and he came within six votes of being nominated for county treasurer in 1910. Possessing a good address and being well acquainted with the people of Macoupin county, Mr. Day can claim a host of friends who admire him for his sterling traits of character. He has depended upon his own exertions for his advancement, and has accepted as a principle of life, to make his word as good as his bond and to deal justly, let the consequences be what they may. The result proves that his principles are correct and it would be difficult to imagine a higher ideal.

1911 Index
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