The subject of this review, who, though past the meridian of life many
years, is still in the same physical and mental vigor that have
characterized his earlier years of endeavor and he is almost as capable in
bearing his part in the concerns of his neighborhood as he was in former
Samuel Marion Holt is a native of Marion county, having been born in Foster township, June 25, 1845, the son of John F. Holt, who was born in Georgia in 1806, and came to Marion county, Illinois, when a young man, where he took up government land in Foster township, settling on North Fork creek among the pioneers, there being then only four families here, the first settlers of this creek being Isaac Agan, Hardy Foster, John F. Holt and Moses Garrett. The subject's grandfather was Harmon Holt, who was born in Georgia and came to Marion county, Illinois, where he died at a ripe old age. He was of Irish descent. Harmon Holt's wife was named Ibby Holt, whom he married in Georgia. The maiden name of the subject's mother was Elizabeth Jones, who was born in the state of Delaware, and who came with her parents to St. Clair county, Illinois, when five years old. Eleven children were born to the subject's parents, five of whom are living. They are: Martha, Henry, Mary, Matilda, Harmon, Salina, Samuel M., Sally, John D., Hardy F. (twins) and Isabelle.
The Indians made a treaty with the government to hunt in the new country, which was still partly a wilderness after his parents had come. Our subject spent his early life on his father's farm and attended the common schools, such as they were in those early days. When he reached maturity he married, on July 21, 1864, Susan F. Atkins, who was born in Marion county, July 16, 1847, the daughter of John Atkins, who was born in Franklin county, Tennessee. He moved to Alabama with his parents when a boy. He was about thirty years of age when he came to Illinois and took up government land. He was the father of four children, an equal number of boys and girls. He spent the remainder of his life here, with the exception of the last fifteen years, dying at the age of seventy-three years in Texas, where he had gone fifteen years previous.
Our subject is the father of seven children, named in order of birth as follows: Mary M., who married Eli M. Arnold, living in Shawnee, Oklahoma, and who are the parents of five children; Margaret E., who married Oscar Chance, of Salem, Illinois, and who is the mother of six children; Emma F., who married James A. Arnold, living in Fort Worth, Texas, and the mother of two children; Rhoda A., who married Ed. Jones, of Salem, Illinois, and who is the mother of two children; John A. was married to Maud Davis, December 13, 1908, and lives at home; the sixth child was an infant, who died unnamed; Lulu B., the youngest child, is the wife of Will Harkey, who lives in Fayette county, near St. Peter, this state, and she is the mother of one son.
Our subject is the owner of a fine landed estate in Kinmundy township, consisting of three hundred and eighty-five acres, of well improved land, which he has successfully managed until it is one of the most valuable farms in the township, being under a high state of improvement and the fields well fenced and well drained. Much good stock of various kinds is to be seen in the subject's barns and fields, and he always keeps good horses, cattle and hogs. He has an elegant and comfortable dwelling, which is nicely furnished and is surrounded by a beautiful yard and convenient outbuildings, in fact, the entire place has an air of evident thrift and prosperity.
Our subject is a Democrat in his political affiliations and he has long taken an active part in his party's affairs. His wife is a devout Christian and a faithful mother, being a member of the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Holt is not a member of the church and does not hold to any Orthodox creed, yet he is a believer in good citizenship, honesty and fair dealing and is highly respected for his good citizenship. The different members of the family are well settled in life and highly esteemed in their respective communities. They reflect great credit upon their parents and no doubt will ever uphold the honor of the family name, which thus far has not been dimmed by the commission of a single unworthy act.
Extracted 08 Jul 2017 by Norma Hass from 1909 Biographical and Reminiscent History of Richland, Clay and Marion Counties, Illinois, pages 206-208.