Death of Mrs. Harriet Akins, October 31, 1888.
Akins - At the residence of Mr. Thomas Tilton in Pine Rock Twp., Ogle Co., October 31, 1888.
Mrs. Harriet Akins - age 99 years.
Mrs. Akins was born in the state of Maryland in 1789, and when quite young came with her father to Ohio and settled where the city of Columbus now stands. At that time it was a vast wilderness, infested with roving bands of Indians. Here, amid the beauty and sublime city of the wilderness she spent the years of her girlhood and when about 17 years of age was united in marriage to Mr. M. Hardesty. After remaining in Ohio a few years, herself and family, immigrated to Indianapolis, Indiana, their only means of conveyance being an ox team and wagon. She remained in Indiana about two years, during which time her husband and one child died. Amidst this deep sorrow she resolved to return to Ohio, and started for Columbus with four children -- -- her conveyance an ox team and wagon. After traveling several days she came to what is known as the "Black Swamp" - - here she came to wait and was obligated to remain until her father could send her assistance. After reaching the home of her father she remained with him until she married James Akins.
In 1835, she and her family immigrated to Ogle County, Illinois, and located at Washington Grove. She has always lived where she built her first log cabin. She was the mother of twelve children, of which only three are now living. She retained her power of both body and mind until her last sickness and died as she lived - a Christian. She was a long honored member of the M. E. Church and aided in the building of the first pioneer chapel at Washington Grove. Mrs. Akins wa at the time of her death evidently the oldest person in Ogle County and the first settler on the east side of Rock River. How strange that we had so recently one among us whose life was so near parallel with the life of the nation. She was born in the first year of the administration of George Washington and has lived under the administration of all the Presidents from George Washington to Grover Cleveland. She saw the nation grow from three million to sixty million people. The funeral services took place at the Christian Church at Washington Grove, the sermon by Rev. Bassett of Ashton, assisted by Rev. Barton Cartwright of Oregon, Illinois. Her aged and venerable form was borne to its last resting place by the hands of old settlers who had shared with her the trials of pioneer life. Sweet by thy rest. F. B. Rolph
Hardesty Family History Book, Gladys Dietz, Eva Stroh, Hamilton Cross, 1969