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Born in the State of Illinois, 22,964; in Ohio, 7,580; in New York, 2,598; in Pennsylvania, 2,713; in Indiana, 2,215; in Kentucky, 2,296 ; in British America, 420; in England and Wales, 952; in Ireland, 2,949; in Scotland, 230; in Germany, 2,839; in France, 207; in Sweden and Norway, 50; in Switzerland, 153; in Bohemia, 1; in Holland, 41; and in Denmark, 24.

The surface of McLean County is now cut by nine distinct railroads. Across the extreme southeast corner, runs the Chicago & Paducah Railroad, with Osman Station on it within the county. Farther north, in the same corner of the county, runs the Gilman, Clinton & Springfield road, in a northeasterly direction, cutting West Township in the southeast corner, and Belleflower Township centrally, having on its line Belleflower Station. Still farther north, and running in the same direction, is a narrow-gauge road, now under construction from Le Roy to Saybrook, and cutting Empire, West and Cheney's Grove Townships, with prospective stations on it. In the extreme northern part of the county, running directly east and west, and cutting Gridley, Chenoa and Yates Townships, is the Toledo, Peoria & Warsaw road, with Weston, Chenoa, Meadows and Gridley Stations on it. Running diagonally through the county from southwest to northeast, is the Chicago & Alton road, cutting Mount Hope, Funk's Grove, Dale, Bloomington, Normal, Towanda, Money Creek, Lexington and Chenoa Townships, and having on its line McLean, Funk's Grove, Shirley, Bloomington, Normal, Towanda, Lexington and Chenoa Stations. Running nearly north and south through the county, is the Central Railroad, cutting Hudson, Normal, Bloomington and Randolph Townships, and having on its line Hudson, Normal, Bloomington, Randolph and Heyworth Stations. Running east and west from Bloomington to the eastern line of the county, is the La Fayette, Bloomington, Toledo, Wabash & Western road, cutting Bloomington, Old Town, Padua, Arrowsmith and Cheney's Grove Townships, and having on its line Bloomington, Holder, Ellsworth, Arrowsmith and Saybrook Stations. Running diagonally across the county, northwest and southeast, cutting Empire, narrowly missing West, then Downs, Old Town, Bloomington, Dale, Dry Grove and Danvers Townships, is the Indianapolis, Bloomington & Western road, having on its line Le Roy, Downs, Bloomington, Twin Grove and Danvers Stations. Running west from Bloomington to the western line of the county, is the Jacksonville Division of the Chicago & Alton road, cutting Bloomington, Dale and Allen Townships, and having on its line Bloomington, Covell and Stanford Stations.

An inspection of the county map will show that these railroads, with their twentyfive stations, are admirably located to accommodate all parts of the county. They leave only five townships without railroad stations. A road, of which there has been some talk, running southeast and northwest, between Lexington and Saybrook, if properly located, would accommodate four of those townships—Blue Mound, Lawndale, Martin and Cropsey—with stations, leaving only one small fractional township-White Oakwithout a station, and there are already two stations, one on each side of it, only about three miles distant from its limits.

Such a body of land, thus cut up by railroads, and dotted all over with stations, embracing a charming variety of prairie and grove, covered with cultivated farms, with comfortable homes, and thousands of domestic animals, is not to be surpassed in any country. In addition, it must be borne in mind that the county seat, Bloomington, has a population of over twenty thousand people, with one of the largest churches in the State and numerous smaller ones; with the shops and station-buildings of the Chicago & Alton Railroad, covering forty acres; with the finest paid-for Court House in the State; with the Wesleyan University, accommodating several hundred students, and several very fine public schoolhouses within its limits, and the State Normal University, and the Soldiers' Orphans' Home, both stately buildings, in its near vicinity, and surrounded by several large towns and numerous small ones, and a magnificent country, dotted all over with churches, schoolhouses and mills—when one takes all these things into consideration, the changes that have come over the face of McLean County within the memory of many of its citizens are indeed wonderful, and they may well be the source of honest pride and self-complacency to those who have had an active hand in bringing them about. Other changes, too numerous to be mentioned, only heighten the wonder, and induce a hearty thankfulness in the beholder.

POLITICAL HISTORY. In early times in McLean County, there were only two distinctions in political sentiments--Jacksonism and Whiggism. Jacksonism, or Democracy, seemed to be the raw material of politics, and Whiggism the manufactured article; and the raw material seems to have been more prevalent than the manufactured article. Many of the citizens then cared very little for education, and for current news and general information. They seemed to take their politics as they did their measles—in the natural way. Tradition was the chief source of their political preferences, and they were born into their political party as into their church.

In 1832, there were seven Whig votes in Bloomington Precinct, and Gen. Gridley cast one of them. A family tradition says that when, in 1828, Mr. John Dawson, then living twelve miles east of Bloomington, was about to start to go and vote in the fall election at Mackinawtown, then the county seat, Mrs. Dawson, who was for Jackson, persuaded her husband that it was going to rain, and not to expose himself to a two or three days' ride over the rough roads for the sake of casting a single vote for men that did not know him, nor would ever thank him for it; and that, in the evening, when it was too late for Mr. Dawson to make the trip, with mischievous smile, the old lady said she had gained oue vote for Jackson by preventing an Adams vote being cast.

Gen. Gridley claims that the instrumentality of the Bloomington Observer turned a portion of the raw material of politics into the manufactured article, in its day, that being the first newspaper published in Bloomington, and that McLean remained a Whig county from that time. Be that as it may, it was a pretty close race in the county for quite a number of years—the result, either way, depending more, in many instances, upon personal influence than upon party majority.

For many years, Gen. Meritt L. Covell, a very clever gentleman, by the way, seemed to be the leading spirit and the embodiment of Democracy in McLean County. He was an active and able manager, and kept the politics of the county a good deal mixed for years. In 1840, the political whirlwind that carried Gen. Harrison into the Presidency passed over the country, and the Whigs elected Gen. Gridley to the State Legislature. In 1834 and 1836, the Democrats elected Hon. William L. May to Congress in this, then, Third District; and in 1838 and 1810, the Whigs elected Hon. John T. Stuart, carrying the district, in 1838, by a majority of seventeen votes. From that time on, the Whigs were able, generally, by good management, to carry this county in general and in local elections, the majority being from fifty to a hundred votes. Some times the majority was very small, and occasionally a Whig candidate was beaten. This state of things continued for several years, the Whig majorities gradually increasing as the feeling became more and more antagonistic among the people on the subject of slavery. In those days, Illinois was always Democratic, and continued to be so, though with decreasing majorities; but McLean stood always true to the Whiy party. In 1855, in the county election, there was no opposition to the Whig ticket. In 1852, the nomination of Gen. Scott by the Whigs, for the Presidency, was not popular in McLean County; but the Whig vote was out at the polls, yet with the expectation of being beaten.

In 1854, came the times to try men's political souls. The compromises between the two parties in Congress that year, in which it was agreed not to introduce any more discussion on the slavery question, and to ignore the subject, gave dissatisfaction to many people of both parties. Their attachment to party began to loosen, and there was uneasiness on all sides. The feeling that there was approaching a breaking of political ranks, and rallying on new issues and under new leaders, began to pervade the people of McLean County. Properly speaking, the people of this county have never been political Abolitionists. They were never in favor of disturbing the constitutional rights of the people of the South, nor of clandestinely assisting their slaves to escape. They were opposed to the violent and premature commotion that occasionally broke out on the subject, hoping that some peaceful and legal way out of the difficulty might be found.

But when the direct question of introducing slavery into the more northern and free Territories, either by law, by indifference, or by violence, the people of this county protested against such introduction.

In 1856, came the issue between allowing or preventing slavery in Nebraska, Kansas, and indefinitely west; and through the dodge of so many behind what they were pleased to call Knownothingism, Americanism, or Fillmoreism, that political abortion, James Buchanan, was elected to the Presidency. His stolidity and cowardice, or something worse than either, assisted greatly to bring on the crisis of 1860. But through all the changes and turmoil, the people of McLean County stood firmly by the Republican party after it succeeded the Whig party, by larger and larger majorities. In proof of this statement, we need only to mention a few facts.

The first Republican State Convention ever held, took place in Bloomington. The first paper to run up the name of Mr. Lincoln for President was the Bloomington Pantagraph. The citizens of McLean County did more to bring him before the people as a candidate, and to secure his nomination at Chicago, than those of any other county in the country. Conclusive evidence on these points is easily procurable. Messrs. Jesse W. and Kersey H. Fell were the prime movers in getting Mr. Lincoln into the field, and Judge David Davis did more to secure his nomination than any other living man.

In 1848, McLean County gave Gen. Taylor a moderate majority. In 1852, it yave Gen. Scott a respectable majority, though there was no enthusiasm on the subject. In 1856, it gave John C. Fremont a majority of 420. In 1860, it gave Abraham Lincoln a majority of 985. In 1864, it gave Mr. Lincoln a majority of 1,419, In 1868, it gave U. S. Grant a majority of 2,037. In 1872, it gave Grant a majority of 2,510. In 1876, it gave Rutherford B. Hayes a majority of 1,953.

For several years past, owing to difference in financial sentiments, and to personal influences, and inevitable disaffection at censurable uses of power and opportunities, the local issues have been somewhat mixed. But whenever there are straight issues and harmony in the party, McLean County is decidedly Republican.

An Act to Incorporate the McLean County Agricultural Society:

Section 1. Be it enacted by the people of the State of Ilinois, represented in the General Assembly, That John E. McClun, Edward H. Didlake, William H. Allen, Isaac Funk, Edwin Poston and Samuel Lander, and such persons as are or may hereafter become members of the McLean County Agricultural Society, from and after the passage of this act, shall be and they are hereby constituted a body corporate and politic, by the name and style aforesaid, and by that name they and their successors shall have succession, and shall, in law, be capable of contracting and being contracted with, of suing and being sued, pleading and being impleaded, prosecuting and defending, in all manner of actions in law or in equity, in all courts and places whatever where legal proceedings are had; and by that name and style be capable, in law, of purchasing and receiving, by gift or otherwise, holding and conveying real estate, for the benefit of said corporation : Provided, That said corporation shall not, at any one time, hold real estate more than the amount of 160 acres.

Sec. 2. Said corporation shall have power to loan money belonging to the same, and take promissory notes or other evidences for the money so loaned, which may be collected in their corporate name aforesaid, in all courts and places whatever where judicial proceedings are bad; and, in their corporate name, shall have power to sue for and collect all gratuitous subscriptions that are or may hereafter be made to said corporation.

SEC, 3. A meeting of the members of this corporation shall be held on the first Monday in March, 1853, and forever thereafter on said day annually, for the purpose of making sucb by-laws as may be necessary for the better government and regulation of the association, and also for the purpose of electing a President, two Vice Presidents, a Secretary and Treasurer. who shall respectively hold their office for one year and until their successors are elected ; and the said officers so elected be a standing Board of Directors, with full power and authority to do all acts and deeds necessary to promote the interest of the association, and to carry into effect the provisions and objects of this act.

Sec. 4. The Treasurer shall, before entering upon the duties of his office, give bond to said corporation, to be kept by the Secretary of the same, with sufficient security for the faithful performance of his duties.

Sec. 5. This act to take effect from and after its passage.
Approved February 12, 1853.


An Act to amend an Act entitled An Act to Incorporate the McLean County Agriculturai Society," approved February 12, 1853 :

SECTION 1. Be it enacted by the people of the State of Ninois, represented in General Assembly, That the third section of the act to which this is an amendment be so amended that a meeting of the members of said corporation, for the purpose therein mentioned, shall be annually held on the Fair Grounds of said Society, at 1 o'clock P. M., on the second day of the Annual Fair thereof.

This act to take effect and be in force from and after the first day of September next.
Approved February 13, 1861.

An act passed February 15, 1857, appropriating $100 to each County Agricult-
ural Society, for the years 1857 and 1858, payable June 1, by State Treasurer, to the
Treasurer or fiscal agent of each County Agricultural Society.

February 21, 1861, said law revived, to be continued in force until otherwise provided by law.


of the McLean County Agricultural Society, revised and adopted March 5, 1866.



The Acts of Incorporation of this Society shall be the Constitution of the same.


Sec. 2. The object of this Society shall be the promotion of the improvement of science and art of agriculture, of stock, domestic manufactures, mechanic arts and horticulture.


SEC. 3. The President shall appoint an Advisory Committee of not less than four nor more than seven, who, together with the Board of Control, shall transact all business of the Society.


Sec. 4. There shall, in addition to the regular meetings of the Society, be one held of the Board and Advisory Committee on the first Monday of November, annually.


Sec. 5. The duty of the President shall be to preside at the meetings of the Board or of the stockholders, have power to call special meetings of either, and perform all duties pertaining or usual to like offices, and in his absence one of the Vice Presidents shall perform said duties.


Sec. 6. It shall be the duty of the Secretary to keep in a book provided for that purpose, a true account of the doings of the Board at their meetings or those of the stockholders, keep & correct list of stockholders ; draw all orders or drafts on the Treasurer and keep an account of the same; advertise by public notice in the newspapers of the county, the time of holding the meetings of the Society and such other duties usually devolving on such officer or directed by the Board.


Sec. 7. It shall be the duty of the Treasurer to receive all moneys due or belonging to the Society, and disburse the same upon the order of the Secretary; keep a correct account of all receipts and disbursements, and make report of the same at each annual meeting, or at such time as the Board may direct.


Sec. 8. It shall be the duty of the Board, together with the Advisory Committee, to exercise a general supervision over all the interests of the Society; shall appoint all committees necessary for carrying out successfully, the objects of the Society; they shall specify the articles for which premiums shall be awarded ; determine kind and value of the same; fix the time of holding the annual fair, and do such acts as they may believe for the best interests of

the Society.

QUORUM. Sec. 9. A quorum of the Board and Advisory Committee shall consist of five members, and that of the stock holders, fifteen.


Sec. 10. The annual fair shall be held between the 1st day of September and the 15th day of October, each year.


Sec. 11. Appointing of Superintendents, Awarding Committees, and affixing premiumlists, shall be made at the regular meeting of the Board held on the first Monday of November of each year, or at an adjourned meeting for that purpose.

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