William H. Long, former President of the Washington Town Board, was born in Somerset, Ohio, September 11, 1838. From there, at the age of eight years, he accompanied his mother to Dubuque, Iowa, where he remained with his grandfather, Luison Bixler, until the latter was burned out by outlaws, when they moved to Quincy, Ill., and resided on a farm. At the age of thirteen years the subject of this sketch went to Peoria, where he found employment in a factory bottling Farrell’s Mustang Liniment, at the same time attending the public schools, next engaging in engineering and learned to be a stationary engineer. Subsequently, in order to acquire a more intimate knowledge of civil engineering, he assisted in surveying the Toledo, Peoria & Warsaw Railroad, carrying chains, etc., later going to Texas, where he operated a cotton farm for A. L. Merriman. In 1855 he came to Tazewell County, locating at Washington, and there acquired the trade of a blacksmith. During the War of the Rebellion he worked in a government shop at Nashville, Tenn., after which he was employed in the shop of Tobiac & Buskett for thirteen years. In 1878 he went into business for himself, building buggies and wagons, and formed a company for the construction of carts, of which he was the patentee. Mr. Long is a member of the Methodist Church, in which he has held the office of steward. In politics he is an active Democrat, has served his town as Alderman of his Ward, and has been President of the Town Board. For a number of years he belonged to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and filled all the chairs of his lodge.
Mr. Long was married at El Paso. Ill., to Miss Julia Thompson, and of this union six children were born, of whom the following still survive: Lillie Irene, Charles and Harry C. Mrs. Long is a native of Virginia, where she was born in 1837. William Long, the father of the subject of this sketch, was born in Maryland, and married Miss Susan Bixler, whose native State was Ohio. The maternal grandfather was Elias Bixler, a native of Pennsylvania, who was a veteran in the War of 1812 and lived to the advanced age of 103 years.
Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of Tazewell County - page 1040
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