1850 Scott Co, IL. Recently orphaned, he was living with cousins, John and Mary Ann Smallwood while siblings, Henry and Sarah were with Uncle David Van Gundy. His "adopted" father was a teacher so he received a good education.
1862 He enlisted in Co G 18th IL Vol Inf to help in the Civil War effort.
9/20/1863 At the Battle of Chickamauga he was taken prisoner, interred at Libby, and released 3 months later from Andersonville. He was captured a second time and spent 13 months between Danville and Florence prisons, during which time he went 3 days and 3 nights without food. He was wounded at the Battle of Stone River. He arrived home on New Years Eve 1864, took sick and was confined to his bed for the next 8 weeks.
3/12/1865 He received his discharge from the army, having served 3 yrs, 7 mo.
1870 Orvil Twp, Logan Co, IL. The census taker again found him living with the Smallwoods and working on the farm.
1880 Baynton, Tazwell Co, IL was where he was found at census time. He was a farm laborer, age 37, wife E Louisa, was 34 and they had no children. Next door neighbors were his in-laws and the Smallwood boys, Theodore and Peter, lived nearby.
1885 Craig, Burt Co, NE. He probably moved west with Louisa's family.
Family stories were told that he raised the children alone following Louisa's death.
1900 He still had 2 children at home at census time.
1910 He was living alone but daughter, Myrtle Jane, lived nearby.
Living w/John & Mary Smallwood in 1850 census.
His obituary said he had been in failing health for some time "but had been up and around each day and at a late hour Thursday evening was sitting up reading as was his custom. His death was discovered by neighbors who, noticing the light still burning at 10 o'clock Friday morning went in and found him lying on the couch fully dressed."
"The many friends here will sadly miss their old friend, Uncle John, as he wa familiarly called by old and young alike. His cheerfulness and optimism during a career of devotion and service, pain and sorrow, will be an inspiration to all who knew him, and his memory will be revered by all."
The family chose a family member to stand by his graveside every Memorial Day for years.