The office of county superintendent of schools is one of great importance, and fortunate are teachers and pupils when the place is filled by an individual who is in full sympathy with the public school system and amply qualified by education and experience for the responsibilities involved. the people of macoupin county may truly be congratulated so far as the superintendent of schools is concerned, as the present incumbent is a man of large and practical experience, whose principal interest is centered in the schools. The fact that he is now serving a second term of four years is evidence of appreciation on the part of taxpayers.
Robert Christian Moore is a native of Carlinville township, Macoupin county, born August 4, 1870, a son of Thomas Guthrie and Sarah Ann (Villman) Moore. The father was born in Macoupin county and the mother in Ohio. In their family were six children, four of whom are now living: Robert Christian, of this review; M. Bessie, who is assistant county superintendent of schools; Nellie Isabel, the wife of Harry Bolinger, of Newton, Illinois; and George Wilbur, a mining engineer of Gillespie.
The father of our subject was reared in Carlinville township, and is still living there, having passed his entire life of seventy-three years on the same farm. He has taken an active part in the promotion of the best interests of the township, and has served as supervisor and also as school trustee and school director. Mrs. Moore came to Macoupin county when she was about fifteen years of age, and she has spent fifty-five years in this county. She is a consistent member of the Methodist church. The paternal grandfather of our subject was Robert Moore. He was born in Kentucky and was a pioneer of Macoupin county, arriving in this section in an ox wagon when the country was still open and largely unoccupied. His wife was Elizabeth Williams. Her parents moved from Maryland to Virginia and then to Kentucky, where they spent the remainder of their lives. She was married to Mr. Moore in Kentucky. Her husband died from cholera in 1851, but she lived to an advanced age. In their family were five children: Thomas G.; James; Henry, who died in the Union army at the time of the Civil war; Martha; and Nancy. The great-grandfather of our subject was Thomas G. Moore, who married Edith Trent. the grandfather on the maternal side was Christian Villman, a native of Germany, his mother being of French parentage. He came to America and married Mary Fisher, who was born in Ohio. They arrived in Macoupin county in the early days, where he gained quite a reputation as a hunter. He started for Pikes Peak on a hunting expedition and was never heard of again. There were three children in his family, Joseph, Jacob and Sarah Ann.
Mr. Moore of this sketch was reared on his father's farm, four miles northeast of Carlinville, and in the district schools he secured his preliminary educational training. Later he attended the state normal school, and he has largely extended his knowledge by private study and observation. He taught school for three years in the rural districts, one year as assistant principal at Girard, two years as principal at Plainview, six years as principal at Palmyra, one year as principal at Manchester, and for three years served as city superintendent of schools at Staunton. The entire period of sixteen years was spent in Macoupin county except one year at Manchester. In 1903 he was awarded a state certificate, which is granted only to teachers of recognized standing and high scholarship. He was elected county superintendent of schools of Macoupin county in 1906, and discharged his duties so acceptably that he was reelected in 1910 and is now occupying the position.
On the 12th of July, 1894, Mr. Moore was married to Miss Pauline C. Werse, a daughter of Daniel and Dorothea (Lentz) Werse. Three children have been born to this union, Dorothy Ann, Paul Robert and Harold Guthrie. Mrs. Moore is a native of Carlinville and her parents were born in Germany. Her father is deceased, but her mother is still living. In their family were seven children, Annie, William, Minnie, Pauline, Zena, Edward and Theodore. Mrs. Werse had been previously married to a Mr. Hundredmark, and to this union three children were born, Dora, Mary and Henry.
Mrs. Moore is a stanch member of the Lutheran church. Fraternally Mr. Moore belongs to Staunton Lodge, No. 177, A.F. & A.M., and Macoupin Chapter. No. 95, R.A.M. He is a member of the Eastern Star, Orient Lodge, No. 95, K.P., the Modern Woodmen of America and the Court of Honor. Although an adherent of the democratic party he is not strictly partisan, as his interest is centered in his life work. He served as township assessor one term in Staunton township. From the beginning of his active career he has shown an energy and progressiveness that have been highly creditable; he also shows a knowledge of human nature which is an essential requisite of the successful teacher. As a school manager he has succeeded admirably, and today it would be difficult to find in Illinois a more capable or conscientious educator than the gentleman whose name introduces this review.