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Ingram, Joshua T.
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Ingram, Joshua T.
Contributed by Barbara
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Source: Past and Present of Pike County, Page 534-536


Joshua T. Ingram, a representative farmer of Perry township, was born May 25, 1849, in the township where he now makes his home, and is a son of Isom L. and Perlina (Rusk) Ingram, natives of Tennessee and Illinois respectively. The father was born June 12, 1822, and the mother June 15, 1825; and they were married in Versailles, this state. The paternal grandparents were Joshua P. and Susanna (Lenox) Ingram, and the family is believed to be of Scotch-Irish lineage. The great-grandfather, John Ingram, was born in Ireland, and in his early childhood accompanied his parents on their emigration to Tennessee, where he was reared. He wedded Rachel Blanton, who was of Irish parentage, and her birth probably occurred on the Emerald Isle. In 1833 John Ingram came with his family to Pike county and secured government land. He afterward improved two or three farms and became recognized as one of the leading and enterprising agriculturists of his day. He lived to an advanced age, gave his political support to the democracy; and both he and his wife endorsed the Methodist faith. Their family numbered seven sons, who reached adult age and reared families in Illinois. This number included Joshua P. Ingram, grandfather of our subject, who was born in Tennessee, January 26, 1802. He married Susanna Lenox, whose birth occurred in Tennessee, November 7, 1800, and who died December 7, 1858. The marriage was celebrated April 13, 1821, and they had one son, Isom L. Following the death of his first wife, Joshua P. Ingram was married to Marinda Nunn, whose death occurred January 15, 1879, while he passed away on the 31st of March of the same year. Their only daughter is deceased.

Isom L. Ingram came to Illinois with his parents when eleven years of age, the journey being made after the primitive manner of the times, in a two-wheeled cart drawn by a yoke of oxen with a horse in the lead. The grandparents brought with them all of their earthly possessions and began life in an almost unbroken wilderness, sharing in various hardships and privations incident to the settlement of the frontier. Isom L. Ingram being an only son, inherited the home property, upon which he remained throughout the greater part of his life with the exception of a brief period of three years spent in Brown county. His original home in Pike county was a log cabin; and he assisted in the arduous task of clearing away the timber and developing the fields. He also attended the early subscription schools of the county, and after his marriage he began farming on his own account on forty acres of land in Brown county, which he purchased, and on which he built a log cabin. Later, however, he returned to section 2, Perry township, whereon he spent his remaining days, devoting his energies to general farming and to raising graded cattle, hogs and horses. He also worked at the cooper's trade for a number of years, having mastered that business when a boy, under the direction of Buck Johns. He likewise followed carpentering to some extent and built the house in which his last years were passed. He served as road commissioner, as school director and as trustee, occupying the last named position for many years. The marriage of Isom L. Ingram and Perlina Rusk was celebrated October 25, 1843. She was one of a family of five sons and five daughters born unto John and Nancy (Swegett) Rusk, who were natives of Kentucky, and subsequent to their marriage, which occurred in that state, they came to Illinois in 1820, settling in Morgan county. For twenty years they resided there, and then took up their abode on a farm in Brown county, where Mr. Rusk died October 8, 1844, at the age of fifty-three years. His widow afterward lived with her children, and died at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Ingram, in 1866, when more than four score years of age. Like her husband, she was an earnest member of the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. and Mrs. Isom Ingram had a family of nine children: Isaac N., born January 28, 1845, married Ellen Ledgett. Susan, born May 8, 1846, is the wife of James York. Joshua T. is the next of the family. Benjamin F. born December 22, 1850, married Henrietta Hannah. Nancy A., born May 9, 1853, is the wife of George Walling. Martha J., born July 23, 1855, is the wife of Alexander Collter. Henry W., born June 27, 1857, follows farming. Louisa, born April 9, 1862, died July 23, 1878. Marinda Ella, born August 22, 1867, is the wife of Cary Harelson.

No event of special importance occurred to vary the routine of farm life for Joshua T. Ingram in his boyhood days. He was reared upon the old homestead farm in Perry township which his grandfather had entered from the government. When nineteen years of age he started upon an independent business career by operating a portion of the James Johns farm. In February, 1905, he removed to his present farm in Perry township, and here he is carrying on general agricultural pursuits in an energetic and successful manner.

He has been married twice. On the 2d of November, 1868, he wedded Miss Sarah E. Banning, who was born February 12, 1848, and died December 14, 1872. They were the parents of four children: Stephen A. who was born September 1, 1869, and died at the age of twenty years, five months and eleven days; Lizzie C. and Lillie E., twins, born March 31, 1875, and both are now deceased; and Addie, who was born July 29, 1872 and died in infancy. For his second wife Mr. Ingram chose Rhoda Banning, a sister of his first wife. She was born in Chambersburg township, March 25, 1846, and they were married July 31, 1873. Her parents were Stephen and Elizabeth D. (Rigg) Banning, the former born in Ohio, May 15, 1814, and the latter in Kentucky, November 16, 1821. Their marriage occurred in Chambersburg township, December 19, 1838. Mr. Banning lost his parents when a young child, and later came to Illinois. Following his marriage he located a mile and a half west of Chambersburg on eighty acres of timber land, and he and his bride carried their wedding effects to a new log cabin. A bedstead was made by boring holes in the logs in a corner of a room and inserting poles into these, and resting the other end upon posts. Mr. Banning made three log stools for chairs and a box served for a table. There was a big open fireplace, and the young couple began their domestic life in the usual manner of the pioneer settler. In 1869 they removed from their original farm to Perry township, settling on one hundred and sixty acres of land; and Mr. Banning improved his house, and cultivated his farm. In early days he also worked at coopering, but his later years were devoted entirely to agricultural pursuits. He was for a long period a devoted and faithful member of the Christian church; and his political support was given to the democracy. He died March 8, 1888, having long survived his wife, who passed away May 10, 1860. In their family were nine children: Z. R., who was born September 18, 1839, died on the 21st of December of the same year. Martha A., born January 14, 1841, died July 3, 1871. Nancy J., born April 24, 1843, is the wife of T. B. Dunn, of Perry township. Mrs. Ingram is the next of the family. Sarah was the first wife of Mr. Ingram. Thomas L., born August 25, 1850, died August 8, 1851. Arabelle D., born May 28, 1852, died October 9, 1870. Isadore C. born September 27, 1854, died March 20, 1857. Octavia O., born October 7, 1857, is the wife of George Piper, of Kansas, and has four children.

Mr. Ingram exercises his franchise right in support of the democracy. He has served as school director for one term, but has cared for no public office, preferring to give his undivided attention to his business pursuits, in which he is meeting with signal success. He belongs to the Modern Woodmen camp and the Knights of Pythias fraternity. His entire life has been passed in this county and he has carried forward the work which was instituted by his grandfather and continued by his father. The name of Ingram has been associated with the development and agricultural progress of Pike county from pioneer times, and has ever stood as a synonym for integrity in business and worth in citizenship.

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