RUTLEDGE, (Rev.) GEORGE, (deceased), former Methodist Episcopal clergyman of Morgan County, Ill., was born in Augusta County, Va., November 11, 1811, the son of George and Mary (Galbraith) Rutledge, both natives of Augusta County, Va., the former dying in that State in 1825. Three brother os the Rutledge family who were natives of England, came to America, one of whom, John Rutledge, became a Chief Justice; John became Governor of South Carolina, and the third, William R., became a planter in Virginia. The latter was the grandfather of Rev. George Rutledge, the subject of this sketch. At the age of twenty years George Rutledge, Jr., was converted and became a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. His father having died seven years previous, and being the eldest child, the care and maintenance of the family devolved largely upon him and assisted to develop those sturdy qualities which, in after life, were prominent traits of his character.
Soon after his conversion Mr. Rutledge entered the ministry, first as a supply on Abington Circuit, Baltimore Conference, under Rev. Charles B. Tippett as Presiding Elder. A year later he was admitted on trial as a member of the Baltimore Conference and immediately transferred to the Illinois Conference, where he occupied positions as follows: Sangamon Circuit, 1835; Jacksonville, 1836; Sangamon, 1837-38; Knoxville, 1839; Lewistown, 1840-41; Rushville, 1842; Carrollton, 1843-44; Quincy 1845; Rushville, 1846; Jacksonville, 1847; Sparta District, 1848; Winchester, 1849-50; Alton District, 1851. The Southern Illinois Conference having been set off about this time, he remained a member of the Illinois Conference and, in 1852, was stationed in Griggsville. Appointments later held by him included Presiding Elder of the Jacksonville District, 1853-56; Pleasant Plains Circuit, 1857-60; Carlinville Station, 1861; Bloomington District, 1862-65; Jacksonville Circuit, 1866-70. His death occurred September 7, 1871, as the result of typhoid fever, by which he was attached after attending a quarterly meeting on the West Jacksonville Circuit August 27th previous.
Mr. Rutledge was married June 1, 1837, to Mary Ann Mathers, who with three daughters and four sons survive him. He was a zealous worker in the interest of the church whose cause he had espoused at an early age, and was an especial friend and champion of the Illinois Conference Female college - now the Illinois Woman's College - during the infancy of that institution. A generous tribute was paid to his memory in a "Memoir" printed in the Minutes of the Illinois Annual Conference held at Jacksonville, September 20-25, 1871, a few weeks after his death. (For sketch of Rev. William J. Rutledge, a brother of Rev. George Rutledge, and who was an Army Chaplain during the Civil War and one of the founders of the Grand Army of the Republic, see page 462 of the "Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois.")