The subject of this sketch was born March 15, 1855, on this farm, and on the very spot where the house stands in which he now lives. (For parental history see sketch of his father). He was here reared, and has never had a home elsewhere. He received the foundation of a sound education in the local district schools, and was then sent to the business college at Jacksonville, and, as he was studious and always stood high in his classes, after leaving school he was well equipped mentally for any career that he might choose to follow. He decided to adopt the calling to which he had been bred, as he had a natural taste for it, and had received a good practical training, and, returning home, he and his brother Samuel have been engaged together, as noted in the opening paragraph of this biography. This farm is especially well adapted to stock raising, and comprises 580 acres of highly cultivated and very productive land.
The Crum brothers have already gained an enviable reputation as successful horse breeders, and they have some very fine blooded animals. They have one of the best Percheron Norman horses in the State. He was imported by J. W. Ramsey, of Springfield, Ill., and is registered in the stud books of France as No. 8773, and in the American stud book as No. 8398, his name being Franchard. He is a fine, active dapple gray, and his colts are considered a superb lot. The Crum brothers also have a dark bay horse, Orear, of the Wilkes stock, registered in the American stud book as No. 7586. He was bred near Paris, Ky., by James Miller, who bred his ancestors for three generations. He is a horse of great promise, and although his speed is not developed, he being young, he gives every indication that he possesses the necessary power, action and blood to trot under thirty. Our subject and his brother have a handsome dark brown roadster, Joe Sprauge, who is of good stock, though not registered. They also pay attention to raising hogs, and have a fine herd of Polands and Berkshires.
Our subject has a quick keen intellect, that has been well trained by a liberal education, and his standing among the young agriculturists, natives of this county, is of the best. In his business dealings he is strictly honorable and fair, and his credit stands high in financial circles.
This sketch would be incomplete without some brief reference to the parents of this young man. While Morgan County was still in the hands of the pioneers, John Crum's father made his way from the old home in Kentucky to this region in search of land, as he had a large family. He came to this State three times before selecting a suitable site for a location, riding a horse named Coose, who was a family favorite, and when he died he was buried on the farm. Mr. Crum finally chose his present homestead on section 12 township 16m, range 10. He was very much prospered in his calling, acting well the part of a pioneer, and as we have seen, retired to private life in the city of Jacksonville, giving up the care of his extensive farm to his sons. He has been twice married, Feb. 14, 1850, he was wedded to Mary A., daughter of Martin and Margaret (Grimsby) Coons, a woman of high character, who was in every way worthy of the respect and affection accorded to her. Their marriage was blessed to them by the birth of the following children: Samuel H., Mathias M., William H., James A., an infant that died young, Charles W.; five of these are still living. They were bereaved of the mother by death July 1, 1877. May 29, 1879, Mr. Crum was again married, Frances D., daughter of William Orear, who came here in 1826, becoming his wife. She was to him a true and devoted companion, and her death, Aug. 29, 1888, was a sad loss.