Matthew P. Bull is the representative of a family that settled in the township of Byron in 1851. John Bull, his father, was born in Perry Co., Pa., and was the son of William Bull, who was the son of Richard Bull, a native of England, and who became one of the pioneers of Perry County. He was a land-holder of note in the territory now included within the township of Tuscaroa. The property was in Cumberland County at the time he made his location in Pennsylvania. He passed the remainder of his life there and is buried among the Cumberland Mountains in the township named. His son, the grandfather of Mr. Bull of this narrative, was born, married, lived, and died in the same township. John Bull was a soldier in the War of 1812, and became the private secretary of Col. Robert Bull. Their party was surprised near the town of Chippewa, and Mr. Bull chanced to be away to look after baggage which proved the saving of his life, as the entire number beside were captured and put to death.
John Bull married Jane Linn, who was a native of Perry County, and the daughter of William and Nancy (Kincaid) Linn. After their marriage they settled in Tuscaroa Township, and were farmers here until 1851 when the father transferred his family and interests to Illinois. After selling his property in the state of his birth, he set forth with his household for the west. He went to Pittsburgh by the canal and there took passage on the Ohio River, and proceeded on it to the Mississippi River on which they traveled until they reached Savannah in Carroll Co., Ill. Fron there they hired a team to complete their journey to Ogle County. Arriving in Byron Township he bought 300 acres of land on section 9, of township 25, Range 11, and section 1, of Range 10, in the same township, both ranges being in Byron Township. There had been some improvements made there among which was two small frame houses, and 160 acres had been plowed. The father lived a respected citizen there until 1862, the year of his death. His wife died in 1847, in Pennsylvania, previous to the removal of the family to Illinois. They had 12 children: Nancy married Thomas Meredith, of Winnebago County, and she is now deceased; Grace is the wife of John Hench, of the township of Byron; Margaret became the wife of William R. Hench, but is not living; Sarah D. resides at Rochelle; William died at the age of 14; Martha died at the age of 4 years; Robert H. died in the township of Byron, and left a widow and a daughter; Rebecca married John Kosier, and died in Byron Township; Matthew P. is the next by birth; Jane J. lived in Cerro Gordo Co., Iowa; Elizabeth G. lives at Rochelle; Martha E. was the wife of Albert Boyington, of Rochelle, and is now deceased.
John Bull was a communicant of the Presbyterian Church, and was its pioneer member in the township of Byron. He gavew the land on which to build a church ediface. He was a Whig before the issues of that party were divided and became a Republican of radical type on the formation of that element in politics.
Matthew P. Bull was 18 when he accompanied his father to Illinois. He remained at home and labored as his father's assistant until the death of the latter, when, in company with his brother Robert, he undertook management of the property. He is now the owner of 155 acres of the land on sections 1 and 6, and owns 66 acres adjoining on section 6, the old farm. He is interested in the avenues of farming common to this section, which includes the capture of agriculture products and raising of stock.
He and Miss Mary Elizabeth Linn were united in marriage in December, 1876. Mrs. Bull is the daughter of John R. and Margaret J. (McKee) Linn. Their six children are named John L., Margaret I., Jennie R., Mary R., and Martha N. (twins) and Grace G. Mr and Mrs. Bull are members of the Presbyterian Church. The former is an adherant of the same political party as his father.
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