MAWSON, JOHN ROBERT , formerly one of the most enterprising and successful farmers of Morgan County, Ill., bur now living at leisure two miles southwest of Jacksonville, was born in Scott County, Ill., February 16, 1843, the son of Robert and Ann (Killam) Mawson, natives of England. Robert Mawson moved with his family to Morgan County about 1838. By occupation he was a farmer, and also had large interests in coal lands in Scott County. On locating in Morgan County, he purchased a small farm of 70 acres on which he spent the remainder of his life, dying in June, 1879, at the age of seventy years, his wife passing away in October, 1856, when fifty-six years old. They were the parents of ten children, namely: Mary Ann (Mrs. Robert Dobson); Elizabeth (Mrs. Robert Hembrough); Martha J. (Mrs. Jonathan Richardson); John Robert; Harriet (Mrs. Samuel Angelo); George who lives in Canada; William, who resides in Missouri; Abel; Fanny (Mrs. P. Ranson), who died at the age of forty-two years; and Phillis (Mrs. Joseph Allen), of California.
In his youth Mr. Mawson received his mental training in the district schools near his home, and assisted his father on the farm. There he was reared to manhood and has been a farmer throughout his life. He is now the owner of 400 acres of as fine land as Morgan County contains, which he has devoted to general farming and stock raising. On September 2, 1861, Mr. Mawson enlisted in Company K. Twenty-seventh Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry, in which he served three years. He participated in the battles of Belmont, Island No. 10, Iuka, Murfreesboro, Knoxville, Chickamauga, Dallas, Raccoon Mountain, Resaca and Atlanta, taking part also in many minor engagements and sharp skirmishes. He was honorable discharged and mustered out of the service at Springfield, Ill., on September 20, 1864. On returning home he applied himself to farming and continued thus until 1903, when he abandoned that occupation and moved to Jacksonville. There he first resided in virtual retirement, in his modern residence on South Main Street, but later removed two miles northwest of the city.
On April 13, 1869, Mr. Mawson was united in marriage with Clara, a daughter of Logan and Lucy (Carlton) Tankersley. This union has resulted in five children, as follows: Frank L., Lucy Ann (Mrs. Charles T. Mackness), of Jacksonville; R. D. Mawson; George L., who died at the age of nineteen years, and LeRoy, who lives at home.
Politically, Mr. Mawson is a stanch Republican. He served as Trustee of Township No. 10, for six years, and held the office of School Director for a period of twenty years. Religiously, he is a member of the Christian Church, in which he was a Deacon for ten years, and has also been Trustee. Fraternally, he is a member of Jacksonville Post, G.A.R.; is also affiliated with the A.F. & A.M. and the U.W.A. orders. He has lived an upright and useful life, and enjoys the unreserved confidence and unfeigned regard of all who know him.