James Wellington Norton, son of David and Lucinda Gates Norton, was born December 20, 1852, in a log cabin southeast of Shabbona on the Norton homestead which his father had purchased from the government for eight dollars per acre. He engaged in farming and was an active member of the Congregational Church and for many years was the church organist.
On February 27, 1890, he was united in marriage to Jessie G. Morse, a teacher in the Shabbona and Malta schools.
In later years, Mr. Norton supplemented his farming by going into the ice business supplying bulk ice for many local ice houses and in summer delivering ice to local residents.
He was known for his quiet unassuming manner and was highly respected for his integrity.
Mr. Norton passed away at his farm home on April 6, 1938, and was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery on Easter Sunday.
His entire 86 years of life was spent on the old farm homestead, 15 acres of which were woodland just a stones throw from the wigwam home of old Indian chief Shabbona.
Source: Lee Centennial Book