ALONZO L. STURGIS, a representative farmer of township 19, was born in Caldwell county, Missouri, November 17, 1856, but in early boyhood days was brought to Menard county by his parents, Daniel and Sarah (Brooks) Sturgis. The father was a native of Pennsylvania and in early life removed to the west. After residing for some time in Missouri he brought his family to Menard county in the fall of 1861 and continued in active business here as a farmer and stock-raiser until called to his final rest in the year 1875. His widow still survives him and is now living in Greenview, having passed the seventieth mile-stone on life's journey on the 9th of May, 1904. In their family were five children: Alonzo L.; Elizabeth, the wife of Johann Pierce, of this county; William B., who is married and resides in Menard county; Nancy J. who died May 30, 1838; and Susan, the wife of Morris Stone, of this county. The parents were members of the Cumberland Presbyterian church and were people of genuine worth and of the highest respectability.
The boyhood days of Alonzo L. Sturgis were quietly passed in Menard county, there being no event of special importance. He worked in the fields upon the home farm and acquired his education in the public schools. Under his father's direction he learned the best methods of caring for the stock and of cultivating his crops and after his father's death he continued upon the old homestead place with his mother until twenty-four years of age, at which time he was married and went to a home of his own. He resided in Greenview for on year and on the 5th of November, 1882, removed to Irish Grove on the old Sturgis homestead. Subsequently he took up his abode upon the home farm and since the first of March, 1896, has there carried on general agricultural pursuits and the raising of stock. For thirty-two years he operated a threshing machine each season, but during the past two years has not engaged in that business.
On the 24th of December, 1880, Mr. Sturgis was united in marriage to Miss Mary M. Cleveland, a daughter of William H. and Hannah H. (Trumbo) Cleveland. Her father was born August 13, 1838, in New York, and after his removal to the west established his home in Menard county, Illinois, where he carried on agricultural pursuits for a number of years. After the inauguration of the Civil war, aroused by a spirit of patriotism, he offered his services to the Union and on the 11th of September, 1861, became a member of Company E, Twenty-seventh Illinois Infantry. He was wounded at the battle of Belmont, Missouri in November, 1861. The regiment received its first baptism of fire under General McClernand, forming the right wing of the attacking force, and inspired by its brave colonel it drove against the enemy in the midst of a perfect hail of bullets and canister. Mr. Cleveland was honorably discharged February 18, 1862, but he re-enlisted as a member of Company F, Twenty-eighth Volunteer Infantry at Petersburg, June 18, 1864. Later he was with Company C, there having been a consolidation effected on the 27th of June, 1864. He then served with Company C until mustered out after the close of the war, on the 15th of March, 1866, at Brownsville, Texas. He arrived at Camp Butler May 13, 1866, and was there paid off. He is now living at Guthrie Center, Guthrie county, Iowa. During the interval between his first and second periods in military service he lost his wife, who died July 19, 1863, and he afterward married again and is now living with his second wife in Iowa. The children of the first marriage are Alonzo, who was born August 4, 1861, and died November 21, 1884; and Mrs. Sturgis.
Mr. and Mrs. Sturgis are the parents of four children: Lawrence E., who was born May 6, 1882, and is at home; Rolland E., who was born October 2, 1884, and died on the 22d of November, following; Loren E., born April 18, 1886; and Raymond S., born July 14, 1889.
In his political views Mr. Sturgis is a stalwart Republican, unfaltering in his advocacy of the party, and he is now serving as on of the school directors and also as road commissioner of his township. He is a member of Myrtle lodge, No. 470, I. O. O. F., at Middletown, has filled all of its chairs and has been a delegate to the state lodge. His wife is connected with the Rebekah degree, the woman's auxiliary of the Odd Fellows society, has held all of the offices therein and she, too, has been a delegate to the state lodge. Mr. Sturgis belongs to the Modern Woodman camp, No. 178, of Greenview; the Farmers Mutual Protective Association, No. 207, at Greenview, and both he and his wife are members of the Court of Honor, connected with Pleasant Valley lodge, No. 59, at Middletown. They have many warm friends in fraternal circles and are held in high esteem throughout the county where Mr. Sturgis has spent almost his entire life, while Mrs. Sturgis has been a life-long resident of this portion of the state.