Orlando F. Crill, a retired farmer of Ogle County, became a resident of Rockford in 1900. He was born in Ogle County, May 30, 1850 his birthplace being his fathers farm in Monroe Township. He is a son of John J. Crill, who was born in Steuben County, New York, and with his parents came to Illinois in 1843, the family home being established in Monroe Township, where the grandfather, Henry Crill, followed farming for many years. As he prospered in his undertakings he wisely invested in land until he became the owner of about thirteen hundred acres, and this place is still in possession of his descendants. In his family were nine children, five sons and four daughters, of whom two daughters and a son are now living Mrs. Orbit who resides on West State Street in Rockford; Mrs. Stocking, of Rochelle; and Harvey Crill, living on North Main Street.
John J. Crill a native of New York State was about nineteen years of age when he came to Illinois, and he assisted in the arduous task of developing a new farm until twenty-one years of age, when he purchased a tract of land, upon which he spent his remaining days developing it into an excellent farm property. He too, became an extensive landowner, adding to his original purchase until he owned six hundred acres. His business judgment was sound and accurate and his investments were wisely placed, so that he realized a handsome financial return. He wedded Miss Margaret Keith who was born in Marietta, Ohio and they became the parents of two sons and a daughterM. J. Crill, who is living on Third street in Rockford; Orlando F. and Mrs. M. J. Hardy whose home is on Third Street in Rockford. In his political views the father was a Republican. He kept thoroughly informed concerning the questions and issues of the day and held the office of assessor, but was never active in seeking political preferment. He and his wife were members of the Methodist Church and their home was always the place of entertainment for the ministers who visited the locality. Mr. Crill contributed most liberally to the support of the church and was deeply interested in all that pertained to the moral upbuilding of the community. He died in the year 1888 (sic 1886) and is still survived by his widow who at the age of seventy-two years resides in Rockford with her son. M. J. Crill.
Orlando F. Crill pursued a common-school education and his youth was a busy one for when not occupied with his text-books he assisted in the work of the home farm. He remained with his parents until twenty-two years of age when he purchased a tract of land in the same locality, carrying on its improvement and cultivation until he traded it for the farm which he now owns. He has two hundred and fifty seven acres of finely improved land in Monroe township on which is a beautiful country residence substantial barns and all modern equipments, including windmills and tanks. There is running water on the place and in his farming operations, Mr. Crill introduced all modern methods and improvements that facilitated his work and rendered his labors more available in the acquirement of a handsome competence. He kept a great amount of stock and this too proved a source of income. His farm is one of the best improved in Ogle county and he resided thereon until 1900 when he took up his abode in Rockford.
On the 17th of December 1873 Mr. Crill was married to Miss Julia Matthews who was born June 1, 1852 in the state of New York, her parents being John T. and Elvira P. (Garvin) Matthews, who came to Illinois when their daughter was but five years of age. They had a family of six children Andrew who died in New York City: Keziah who died in the state of New York in April, 1885; Augusta who became the wife of George Carr and died in Cherry Valley, Illinois, leaving four children; Harlow, who died in Ogle County, Illinois, and who was a soldier of the Civil War, serving for four years in the Seventeenth Illinois Cavalry; Jane, who became the wife of Hugh Carr, and died in Butler County, Iowa, leaving a daughter; and Julia. Both Mr. and Mrs. Matthews have now passed away.
The home of Mr. and Mrs. Crill was blessed with four children, but they lost their eldest, Johnnie, who was born October 4, 1874 and died February 28, 1875. Perry A. born March 27, 1877 pursued his education in the common schools in Monroe Center for a year and in the business college at Rockford for one term. He remained upon the home farm until twenty three years of age and five years ago he entered the Manufacturers Bank of Rockford as collector, assistant cashier and bookkeeper. In fact, he did any work that was needed to be done around the bank and his capability made him a valued assistant. He remained there three years at the end of which time he accepted a position in the office of the Edison Light Company, where he continued for a year. He then went upon the road as traveling salesman for the American Stogey Company at a salary of twelve hundred dollars per year, and he makes his home with his parents. Edna Ruth. born May 10, 1883. was educated in a business college and has also received considerable instruction in music. Marguerite Hazel born October 24, 1885 is a graduate of the high school of Rockford of the class of 1905.
While Mr. Crill is practically living retired he is a man of marked energy, indolence and idleness being utterly foreign to his nature, so that he can hardly content himself without some business interests, and has operated in real estate for himself and for the Eastern Investment Company. He deals in South Dakota lands and also in property here. A Republican in his political views, he has refused various offices that have been tendered him. preferring to give his attention to his business and social relations. He is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America and he and his wife attend the Methodist Episcopal church, of which their daughters are members. Their home is at No. 423 South Church Street and they are prominent and influential people of the community, having won many friends in their connection with the social life of Rockford.
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