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Chicago: Chapman Bros., Publishers


RICHARD Y. DUNCAN. Among the younger men of this county, who have made their own way unaided in the world, the subject of this sketch deserves more than a passing notice. He does a general blacksmithing business at Franklin, where he has built up a good patronage and enjoys a large measure of respect from its best people. He was born in Jacksonville, this county, Feb. 20, 1860, and received only the advantages of a common-school education, but nature endowed him with sound common-sense and the qualities of ambition and perseverance which have enabled him to rise above adverse circumstances, and have gained him a good position among his fellow-men.

Our subject is the son of John B. Duncan, who was born in Tennessee Aug. 10, 1817. He came to this county during his early manhood, and occupied himself as an attorney-at-law with admirable success, filling finally the position of County judge. He was a man of very patriotic sentiments, and upon the outbreak of the Rebellion enlisted as a Union soldier in Company H, 32d Illinois Infantry. He was given a Captain's commission, and at the battle of Hatchie, Oct. 5, 1862, suffered the loss of a limb. Upon his recovery, however, he returned to the army, but was taken ill from the effects of his wound, and died at his home, in Franklin, in the year 1864. Mrs. Adeline G. (Wright) Duncan, the mother of our subject, was a native of Frankfort, Ky., born on the 17th of June, 1823, and came with her parents to this county in the year 1829. Grandfather Wright was a farmer by occupation, and spent his last years in Morgan County. To the parents of our subject, there were born twelve children, eight of whom are living and four deceased, the latter being Henry, James, Sarah, and Nellie. Margaret E. became the wife of John H. Reed, of Franklin, and they live in Bloomington, Ill., where Mr. Reed is employed as a machinist and engineer; they have one child, a son, Walter. John H. married Miss Mary S. Rutledge, of Franklin; he is a blacksmith by trade, and they have six children. Mary R. is the wife of Isam Seymour, a farmer of this county, and mother of nine children. William W. married Mary Gibson of this county, and is occupied as a teacher in Franklin; they have four children. Lilly B. is the wife of Lafayette Clayton, a farmer of this county, and they have five children; Charles B. is a blacksmith by trade, in company with our subject, and remains a bachelor; Emma L. is the wife of John R. Jolly, a stock-dealer of Franklin, and they have five children.

The subject of this sketch was mostly employed during his younger years at blacksmithing, and when ready to establish domestic ties was united in married with Miss Carrie Reinbach, the wedding taking place at the bride's home, in Franklin, May 1, 1884. Mrs. Duncan was born April 2, 1862, in Franklin, of parents who were natives of Germany and came to America in 1849. They settled in Franklin, where the father engaged as a merchant and died jan. 1, 1876. The widow subsequently married Gabriel Evans of Jacksonville. Mr. and Mrs. Duncan have two children - Dessau W. and Meda M. Mr. Duncan belongs to the I.O.O.F., in which he has held the various offices of his lodge. His wife is a member of the Christian Church. Politically, our subject is a decided Prohibitionist, and is a member of the Town Board of Trustees. Both he and his brother Charles deserve great credit for the perseverance with which they have labored, and on account of the position to which they have attained solely upon their own merits.

1889 Index
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