Our subject, like his father, a native of Dumfrieshire, first opened his eyes to the light Feb. 4, 1825, and spent his early life upon his father's farm, coming to America in 1850, when a man of twenty-five years. He landed in New York City, and for two years thereafter was occupied at farming in that State. He then emigrated to the Pacific Slope, and spent six years in California, engaged chiefly in agricultural pursuits. At the expiration of this time he re-visited his native Isle, and after spending a few months among the friends of his childhood, returned to the United States and settled in this county, in June, 1858. For several months thereafter Mr. Forsythe was employed on the farm belonging to the Insane Asylum, then embarked in agriculture on his own account, renting a farm near Murrayville, upon which he operated five years with such good results that he finally bought a farm near Woodson, and has since devoted his time and attention to its improvement. He has erected a good set of buildings, which with their surroundings, form one of the most attractive homesteads in this part of the county. All its belongings suggest peace and plenty, and indicate in a forcible manner the thrift and industry of the proprietor.
The marriage of William Forsythe and Miss Jessie Wilson took place at the bride's home in Jacksonville, March 20, 1860. Mrs. F. is the daughter of John and Margaret (Tulloch) Wilson, who were also natives of Scotland, where they spent their entire lives. She was the second in a family of three children, and was born in Nairnshire, March 28, 1834. She came to America alone in 1856. Of her union with out subject there have been born seven children, viz.: John H., Mary N., William D. (deceased), Edwin J., Margaret T., Allen E., and Luella B., deceased. John married Miss Rosa Ungluab, and resides near Woodson, occupied at farming; Mary N. is with the Simmons hardware firm of St. Louis, as stenographer; the three surviving remain at home with their parents; William D. died at the age of fourteen months, and Luella when less than two years old.
Mr. Forsythe, politically, is a sound Republican, but aside from serving as School Director in his district has little to do with public affairs, preferring to give his time and attention to his farm and his family. Both he and his excellent wife are members of the Presbyterian Church, in which Mr. F. has officiated as an Elder for many years, and has taken an active part in religious work. He is the friend of education, and is uniformly to be found the encourager of those enterprises calculated to elevate society and build up the county.