Among the men of Marion county who have appreciated present day
opportunities and have profited by his ingenuity and persistency in the
business world as a result of the favorable conditions existing in the great
commonwealth of Illinois, is the subject of this sketch, David M. Hester,
who was born in Centralia township, this county, August 16, 1841, the son of
Milton P. Hester, of Clark County, Indiana, who married Christina Copple in
1840 in Centralia township. Matthias Hester, the subject's grandfather, was
born in Hanover, Germany, and came with his parents to America. He married a
Susannah Huckleberry. He was a farmer and he and his wife lived and died in
Clark county, Indiana. They were the parents of twelve children. Grandfather
David Copple lived near Walnut Hill, Illinois, on a farm. The father of the
subject came to Marion county, Illinois, in 1839 when he was still single
and settled near Centralia on a farm, remaining here until his death in
1905. His first wife died in 1855 and he was again married, his second wife
being Martha O. Johnson, of near Mt. Vernon. She died in 1890. He was noted
as a great stock raiser. In politics he was a Republican, and was active in
church work. He was also a promoter of the general good of the public. There
were eight children born to him by his first union, namely: David M., our
subject; Julia, deceased, who married Mark Young, who lived in Salem
township; William A. is living on a farm near Mt. Vernon; John C. is a
farmer near Jefferson, Kansas; Sarah E. married A. H. Young, of Centralia;
Isaac is single and living on a farm in Centralia township; Samuel M. is
living on a farm in Clinton county, Illinois; Mary is single and living on
the old place. Four children were born to Milton P. Hester by his second
wife, namely: Ella is single and living in Centralia; Albertus V. is farming
near Dallas, Texas; Carrie married Mark Anthony, who is a lumber dealer in
Streator, this state; Lillian, the fourth child, is the wife of George
Carns, a locomotive engineer, living in Centralia.
As already intimated the subject's father located on a farm which he secured from the government near Walnut Hill, Marion county, in 1839, securing from five hundred to eight hundred acres. Our subject lived at home attending the common schools in the winter months until he was twenty-one years of age. He then went to Kansas and located in the eastern part of that state, where he remained a short time. When the call for troops was issued to put down the rebellion he was one of the patriotic sons of the North who responded, having enlisted in November, 1861, in Company H, Ninth Kansas Cavalry, under General Blunt, remaining in this branch of the service for two years. He was in many battles and skirmishes in Arkansas and Missouri, being wounded in the left arm and shoulder at Cain Hill. He was laid up at the camp hospital for some time and came home on a furlough, but returned to the service, remaining three years and three months, having rejoined his regiment at Duvalls Bluffs, Arkansas. He served in such a gallant manner that he became first lieutenant. After the war Mr. Hester returned to Kansas and resumed farming for one year then he came back to Centralia. He had a farm in Kansas consisting of eighty acres.
Our subject married Sarah A. Young, of Salem township, in 1867. She was the daughter of Matthew and Sarah (Ware) Young. Nine children have been born to the subject and wife, four of whom are deceased. Their names are: Ella, who married J. P. Rogers, of Salem township; Rose, who married William Gaines, of Stevenson township; Mathew married Pearl Hopkins and is living in Salem township; William is living on a farm, having married Effie McCoy; Daisy is living at home. These children received good educations at the home schools. Mr. Hester is considered one of the best farmers in his community, having made all the improvements on the excellent farm which he has owned for two score years. He successfully carries on general farming and raises some excellent stock of all kinds. He has about five hundred acres of excellent land all in Salem township. He is a loyal Republican, but has held no offices, being content to lend his influence in placing the best men available in the local offices, but prefers to manage his business affairs and keep out of politics as much as possible.
He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic, Chandler Post, at Salem. Both he and his wife attend the Christian church. They are both pleasant people and they have a comfortable home.
Extracted 07 Jul 2017 by Norma Hass from 1909 Biographical and Reminiscent History of Richland, Clay and Marion Counties, Illinois, pages 343-345.