Clay County

Obituary - Cameron McKnight

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On Monday morning, Feb. 2nd, (1902) at 9 o'clock Cameron McKNIGHT died at his home in Sailor Springs, Ill., at the age or 74 years. He was born in Orange County, Ind., Oct. 7th, 1828. His parents moved to Illinois in 1835, and settled in Clay Co., about four miles north and one mile west of the present town of Sailor Springs, and he has been a citizen of Clay County continously since. In 1850, Mar 21st., he was married to Rebecca FIELDS, oldest daughter of Judge Robt. FIELDS of Hoosier Tp. To this union thirteen children were born, eight of whom still survive: John Austin and Millard MCKNIGHT are prosperous farmers of this county; Lyman is in Selma, Cal. and Homer is employed in the silver mines at Gem, Idaho; Mrs. W. A. HARMON and Mrs. Will WOODS are residents of Clay Co., and Mrs. Cynthia MOORE, widow of Wm. MOORE, resides near Selma, Cal. His wife died in 1877. Later he married Mrs. Martha TURNER, widow of Benj. TURNER with whom he lived a pleasant and peaceful life until his late departure. He remained on his farm within a quarter mile of the farm settled by his parents until 1888, when he moved to Sailor Springs and took charge of the boat on the lake, where his unbounded hospitality gained for him hundreds of friends among the many guests that annually visit this summer resort.

He has been a life-long republican and one of the most loyal supporters of the old party, yet he never sought political honors of any kind. It is claimed he was the oldest subscriber of the Globe-Democrat of St. Louis, which paper he has regularily received for almost 50 years.

"Uncle Cam", as he was affectionately called by his countless friends, was a stout, hearty man, 6 ft. and 3 in. tall. His death was caused by heart disease, and came as a surprise to all. He had been troubled by the same to some extent for 20 years, yet his great loving heart prevented him from making it known to his friends for fear they would become uneasy about him. He told his attending physician about it only a few minutes before death. He united with the M. E. church at Conley Chapel in 1867, and has been a liberal supporter of same since. His life has been a continuous example of honesty and manhood in the fullest extent to all who know him. The influence of such a life does not close with death, but will go on forever.

Contributed Sep 10 1998 by Lucille Wattles


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