JOSEPH K. SHARPE. The residence of this gentleman in the city of Jacksonville, dates from the year 1865. His business connections have been chiefly in the lumber trade. For the past ten years he has been much interested in farming in addition thereto. Mr. Sharpe was born in Pike County, Ill., in 1842, and is the son of A. P. and Fanny (Hutchins) Sharpe, who were highly respected citizens of Pike County, to which they removed from Putnam, Windom Co., Conn., in the year 1837. They celebrated their golden wedding in September, 1887. The subject of this writing was married on the 15th of September, 1865, at Griggsville, being then allied to Miss Martha D. Gibbs, the daughter of Charles F. and Elizabeth E. Gibbs, of Griggsville, Ill., and natives of Kentucky. Of this union there have been born nine children, whose names are: Gertrude E., Helen, Ruby May, Fannie, Joseph K., Arthur Frank, Edith, Josephine M., and William K. In May, 1862, Mr. Sharpe enlisted in Company B, 68th Illinois Infantry, and served until October of the same year. He was chiefly occupied in guard duty, but was in active service at the second battle of Bull Run. He was mustered out at the expiration of his term of service, and received his discharge at Springfield, Ill.
The first efforts of our subject in the work of making his own way in the world was in the direction of school teaching, which he commenced shortly after his graduation from the High School at Griggsville, this State. After following this profession for two years, he began trading in stock, continuing successfully engaged in that direction until he came to Jacksonville to engage in the lumber business with J. S. & G. S. Russel, in which connection he continued for twenty-two and one-half years.
In 1879, Mr. Sharpe and his brother Fred became the owners and operators of a finely improved and well-stocked farm about 220 acres in extent; under the firm name of J. K. & F. L. Sharpe. On the first of March, 1888, the full control and sole management of the farm will pass into the hands of the senior member of the firm, and Mr. Sharpe will then give his whole time and attention to it.
The subject of our sketch is one who has been successful in life from a financial standpoint. This is evidenced by the beautiful home he has been enabled to provide and sustain for his family in the western part of the city. In the various social organizations Mr. Sharpe is well and favorably known, being a member of the I.O.O.F., A.O.U.W., and the G.A.R. He is also a retired member of the Knights of Honor. His father was a strong Abolitionist, and was active in what was known as "the underground railroad." Our subject is a stalwart Republican. He is very positive in his position, and at all times ready to engage actively on behalf of the party.