WILLIAM R. GRIMSLEY, who is engaged in general farming and the breeding of horses, being one of the successful men in this line of business in Menard county, was born in Bath county, Kentucky, August 1, 1845, his parents being Nimrod G. and Frances (Moreland) Grimsley, the latter also a native of Kentucky. The father was born in Virginia, August 30, 1813, and came to Menard county March 17, 1865. He purchased land and began farming and stock-raising, and for a number of years was numbered among the well-to-do and respected agriculturists of this part of the state. In his family were six children, five sons and a daughter: Elmore G., John G., William R., Samuel, Nelson and Elizabeth D. All are married with the exception of Samuel and all are living in the county with the exception of Nelson, who makes his home in Seattle, Washington. Elizabeth married Ephraim Propst, of this county.
Reared and educated in his native state, William R. Grimsley came to Illinois in early manhood and throughout his entire business career has carried on general farming and stock-raising. He was at first employed as a farm hand by the month and in 1869, at the time of his marriage, he rented a farm upon which he lived for four years. He afterward rented another farm for eight years and then purchased the tract of land upon which he is now living, consisting of three hundred and fifteen acres. He carries on general farming and he is a member of the Greenview Horse Club Company, of which he has been a director for ten years. He is also a member of the Sweetwater Horse Company and he owns an imported pedigreed Percheron stallion, St. Pachen, which is registered. He also has Satinwood, a standard-bred and registered pedigreed animal, a half-brother to Nutwood. He has always bred the highest grade horses and has been the owner of some very fine specimens of the noble steed. He also owns a number of head of fine cattle, making a specialty of shorthorns of the best grade. He has three hundred and fourteen acres of very valuable and productive land in his farm and he deserves great credit for what he has accomplished as his possessions have been acquired entirely through his laborious and well directed efforts.
On the 14th of January, 1869, Mr. Grimsley was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Kummell, and they became the parents of three children. Edward, born July 31, 1870, is now living in Iowa. Clara, born April 25, 1876, was married December 22, 1897, to W.T. Deatherage, and they have four children, May E., Amos, Hallen P. and Ruth. Alma born October 13, 1878, is at home with her father. The wife and mother died November 1, 1887, at the age of forty-one years.
Politically Mr. Grimsley is a Republican, and keeping well informed on the questions and issues of the day, is able to support his position by intelligent argument. He has been a member of the school board for nineteen years, and believes in the employment of good teachers and the utilization of every practical method that will benefit the schools. He is what the world calls a self-made man, for depending upon his own resources, he has, by honorable methods, risen from a humble financial position to one of affluence.