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Inter-State Publishing Company
Chicago, Illinois, 1881

Page 137

JOHN S. CHESTNUT, attorney and Justice of the Peace, was born in Kentucky, in January, 1816. James Chestnut, his father, was a native of South Carolina, of Irish descent, and married Elizabeth Stevenson, a North Carolina lady. They settled near Waverly, Morgan county, Illinois, in 1826, where Mr. Chestnut died in 1849, and his widow in 1833. John was principally educated in the common schools of Kentucky; read law in the office of P. H. Winchester, Carlinville, Illinois, and was admitted in December 1837, to practice in the Illinois Supreme Court, and in 1841, to the United States Courts. He practiced in Carlinville from 1837 till 1855, Governor John M. Palmer being his chief competitor. He then abandoned the law, and engaged in the real estate and banking business in that place, which proved so successful that he retired in a few years with a comfortable competence, and came to Springfield. Here Mr. Chestnut made some investments in real estate that proved unprofitable, and he lost considerable. In 1867, he was made cashier of the Springfield Savings Bank, holding the position till May, 1872. After spending a year in the office of Stuart, Edwards & Brown, he opened a law office and resumed practice in 1879. In the spring of 1881, he was elected Justice on the Republican and Reform tickets. From 1838 to 1850, he filled the office of County Clerk in Macoupin county; was three times nominated on the old Whig ticket for the legislature, but the party being in the minority, failed to elect their candidate. He declined the nomination for Congress in 1860. Mr. Chestnut has been twice married, first to Sarah A. Blair, of Greene county, Illinois, in 1844, who died; and in 1854 he married Kate N. Corbett, of Jersey county. He has one daughter, Leonora, by the first marriage, now Mrs. Tingley S. Wood, of Leadville, Colorado. Mr. C. is a member of the M. E. Church.

1881 INDEX

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