Benjamin Lyle Greeley, proprietor of a general merchandise establishment. Tremont, Ill., was born in Elm Grove Township, Tazewell County, Ill., January 1, 1866, the son of George Washington and Sarah (Becker) Greeley. His father, a native of Salisbury, N. H., was born January 31, 1824; his mother, in Albany. N. Y., July 24, 1827. Her parents, Adam P. and Sarah (Briggs) Becker, were natives of Schoharie County, N. Y., and of Rhode Island, respectively, and her grandparents, Peter and Maria (Froman) Becker, were both born in Schoharie County.
The paternal grandfather of Benjamin L. Greeley was Benjamin Greeley, who married Rebecca Whitcher, born near Franklin. N. H., not far from the early home of Mr. Greeley. The father of the latter, also named Benjamin Greeley, was also a native of Salisbury Township, Merrimack County. N. H. By trade he was a cooper, and in 1836 removed with his family to Tazewell County, where he purchased a farm in Elm Grove Township, on which he lived until his death, in 1857. His wife died in 1826.
George W, Greeley, the father of our subject, was twelve years old when he accompanied his father to Tazewell County, and in its schools he received a good education. For several years he was engaged in teaching, and in 1850 was married to Sarah Becker. The first land Mr. Greeley bought was located in Section 2, Elm Grove Township, to which he added from time to time, until he owned a half section. In 1851 he helped organize the township, and was its first Collector. He also held the office of Supervisor, Assessor, Town Clerk and Commissioner of Highways, and was School Treasurer for thirty-eight years; also was Justice of the Peace twenty-one years.
During the later years of his father’s life, on account of his parent’s failing health, Benjamin L. Greeley had charge of the family homestead. His father died January 20. 1897. Benjamin L. remained on the farm until March, 1902, when with his mother and family, he removed to the village of Tremont, where his mother died January 24. 1903. His brothers, Edward H. and George D., are residents of California; his brother, James M., died September 28, 1883, and sister, Laura M.. March 21. 1865.
Benjamin L. Greeley, during his residence in Elm Grove Township, has held the offices of Supervisor, School Treasurer, Collector and Assessor and Justice of the Peace. He was married in Elm Grove Township, March 3, 1892, to Miss Mary E. Simpson, a native of Pulaski County, Ky., and they have two children: George S. and Glenna Marie. Mrs. Greeley is the daughter of W. D. and Nana (Cox) Simpson, the former a native of North Carolina, who in early life removed from his native State to Pulaski County, Ky., and thence to Indiana in 1875. In 1882 he settled in Groveland Township, Tazewell County, and after residing there eight years, removed to Elm Grove Township, where he and his wife are still living. Mr. and Mrs. Greeley are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In politics Mr. Greeley is a Democrat.
Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of Tazewell County - page
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