Sangamon Pioneer Women

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"These women were prominently identified with the early days of Springfield. Mrs. Iles was the wife of Maj. Elijah Iles, Springfield's first merchant, who built his store at Second and Jefferson St. in 1821, near the stake the first commissioners had driven earlier that year to mark the location of the county seat. Major Iles became one of the city's richest men. Mrs. Iles was a native of Lima, N.Y. Mrs. Van Bergen was Mrs. Iles' sister and lived with the Iles' before her marriage to Peter Van Bergen, an early Sangamon county sheriff.

Mrs. Enos was the wife of Pascal P. Enos, who came to Springfield in September, 1823, as receiver of the land office here and who, with Iles, established Springfield. Both Enos and his wife, Salome Paddock Enos, were natives of Vermont. Enos died in 1832 leaving his widow with six children to rear. With a property then of small commercial value in dollars, she husbanded her resources and brought her children one of the largest estates of the city.

Mrs. Enos gave the city the present public square so the city could co_ate the site for the first state capitol. She and her children gave the ground on which to erect the Chicago & Alton depot and a large trace of ground now embraced in the grounds of Concordia college.

Date & Name of Original Newspaper unknown.

Submitted by: Jeanie Lowe.