We herewith present to the people of Wayne and Clay Counties a history of this portion of Illinois, from its earliest known existence to the present time. In some things the reader may think, especially if he should be a stranger to the pioneers or their descendants, that at times we deal in details that are tedious, but in a generation from now these details will be the more highly prized the more full and complete they are.
Then, in telling the story of the general county histories, we believe they will be found clothed in a literary garb, and brightened with reflections, suggestions and philosophical deductions, that will make it a storehouse for young and old, where they may acquire new and enlarged ideas, and thus receive profit as well as pleasure, that will repay them a thousand-fold for the small outlay of the original cost of the book.
This work has cost us much labor, and a large expenditure of money, and although our territory for patrons is sparsely settled, and, therefore, our patronage but limited, yet we have given in this book more than we promised, and we feel assured that all thoughtful people in the county now, and especially in the future, will recognize and appreciate the work and its permanent value.
We are indebted to the kind assistance of most of the prominent people
in the county for interesting facts and assistance in our compilations,
and also to F. M. Wollard and G. W. Smith for their valuable
contributions of interesting chapters.