THEODORE E. CURTISS was born in Litchfield County, Conn., in the town of Warren, May 28, 1813, and settled in Morgan County in the spring of 1835. His ancestors for many generations resided in the New England States, where they came from England. His great-grandfather was an officer in the Revolutionary War, and his son, whose name was Augustine Curtiss, was his aid during the same war, and subsequently drew a pension therefor.
The father of Theodore E., after marriage, resided in Connecticut until he was fifty years of age, when, in 1837, he came to Illinois, passing his remaining days in Waverly. He died in the year 1886, lacking but little over a year of rounding out a full century. His wife had died ten years before this. They were the parents of five children: Miranda, who married M. B. Strong, and resides in Connecticut; Theodore E.; Augustine A., who is a farmer in Morgan County; Lodenia, who married J. R. Godfrey, and is a resident of Godfrey, Ill.; and Frederick, who resides in Sangamon, Ill. There have been no deaths in the family, and the youngest member was over fifty years of age when his mother died.
Theodore E., of whom we write, passed his boyhood days on a farm, and received the limited education that was generally obtained in the common schools of his day. He resided in his native town until 1835, when he came to Illinois and purchased 160 acres of land, which he improved. In 1836 he returned to Connecticut, and the following year was married to Laura A. Sackett. She was born in the same town as her husband, and was a daughter of Justus and Polly (Bradley) Sackett. Immediately after marriage they came to Illinois, and settled on land which he had purchased in 1835. His parents, two brothers, and one sister also returned with him. The journey was made via New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburg, and the Ohio River, occupying three weeks. Waverly was platted in 1835, and our subject assisted in the work, he having come to Illinois with Joseph A. Tanner, father of Dr. Tanner, President of Illinois College. Mr. Curtiss gave his entire attention to farming until about 1852, and in addition to his farming operations he was interested in a general store with his brother, Fred Curtiss, and J.W. Ross. The business continued under this firm name for some five years, when Theodore sold out his interest to engage in farming; the firm then dissolved. He now owns 400 acres of land, all well improved, and resides in Waverly, where he is passing a retired life in his pleasant home. He is interested in the Bank of Waverly.
Mr. Curtiss, on June 1st, 1867, was called upon to mourn the death of his wife. She was the mother of one child, who died in infancy. On Dec. 22, 1868, he married Augusta L. Tupper, a Massachusetts lady, the daughter of Martin and Persis Lomira (Peck) Tupper. The Tuppers resided in Connecticut for several generations. Mrs. Curtiss was born Feb. 4, 1832. Her father, Martin Tupper was ordained a minister of the Congregational Church, and preached in several different towns. He was a minister for more than forty years, over twenty-five of this period being spent in Hardwich, Mass. His wife died at the age of sixty-seven years, but he lived two years beyond the allotted four score and ten. They were the parents of six children. Henry is a minister in the Congregational Church, and is located at Joy Prairie Church, Morgan Co.,Ill; Augusta, the wife of our subject; Emily married Dr. J.C. Norris, of Philadelphia, and died in 1866; James B.T. in an employee of the Bureau of Internal Revenue, in Washington, and was a soldier for three years. Louisa resides in Waverly, and Elizabeth died in 1864.
Mr. and Mrs. Curtiss are the parents of one child, a son, Theodore T. Theodore E. Curtiss, at the time the Whig party was alive, belonged to that organization, but is now an ardent Republican and a supporter of its policy. He is a communicant in the Congregational Church, being one of the founders of that society at Waverly. Mr. Curtiss has made his way in the world, and achieved his present success through his own persistent efforts.
A portrait of Mr. Curtiss will be found in this volume, and is a valuable addition to an interesting work.