Clay County

Biography - John Onstott

MAJOR JOHN ONSTOTT (deceased). Among the early settlers of Xenia Township who took an active part in developing the county, and who were widely known, was the gentleman whose name heads this sketch. He was born in North Carolina, July 20, 1792. For many years in his youth he followed teaming in his native State, and in Kentucky, Indiana and even Illinois. He took an active part in the war of 1812, and during the Black Hawk war was a Major in the army. He was married three times, first to Miss Elizabeth White, who was the mother of three children who lived to maturity, only two of whom now survive - Mrs. Sophia Edwards, of Carlyle. Ill., and Levi Onstort, whose sketch appears. His second wife was Miss Elizabeth Patton, who died childless. His last marriage was in 1857, in Sedalia, Mo., to Miss Cecelia Fergeson. By this marriage there were two sons, only one of whom now survives, J. D. Maj. Onstott moved to this county, in 1828, and lived here most ot the time till his death, which occurred May 16, 1876. His occupation while living in this county was mostly that of farming and stock-dealing, and he was very succcessful. At his death, he left a landed property of about 760 acres, 480 lying in Clay and 280 in Marion County.

Source: 1884 History of Wayne and Clay Counties, Illinois, Part IV, pages 162-163.

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