Americans are not hampered by the shackles of class distinction and it is
every one's privilege to build the structure of his life as he sees fit.
This gives us what is often termed the self-made man, a good example of
which is found in the subject of our sketch, Charles Dean, of Alma township,
Marion county. Mr. Dean is a descendant of that sturdy type of pioneers that
pushed westward along the highway marked out by Daniel Boone in the early
days of our country's history. His father, Samuel Dean, was a native of
Maryland, and his mother, Cerena (Bishop) Dean, was born in Tennessee. When
he was quite young his mother died, leaving the father surviving with
several children. Thrown largely upon his own resources thus early in life,
the boy developed that spirit of self-reliance and energy that forms such a
marked characteristic of the self-made American.
In 1875 Mr. Dean was married to Sarah E. Rush, who was born in Marion county, Illinois, November 14, 1851. She was the daughter of Samuel and Rebecca (Hatfield) Rush, the latter still living at the age of seventy-three years, in 1908.
Mr. and Mrs. Dean have become the parents of three children, two of whom, Dollie and Daisy, died when quite young; the third, Noah, is now a practicing physician at Alma. As a boy he showed a keen interest in his studies and manifested considerable aptitude for the study of natural phenomena.
As he approached manhood he decided to make medicine his profession, and his success in this field demonstrated his fitness for his chosen calling. He resolved to pursue his medical studies at some school of unimpeachable reputation, and finally entered the Iowa State Medical College, Keokuk, Iowa. Here he applied himself so vigorously that he soon attracted the interest of the instructors and won the admiration of his classmates. His previous experience of four years as a teacher in the Marion county public schools, gave him a broad foundation for his later efforts and he finished his work with a standing of third in the graduating class. Since establishing himself in practice he has joined in marriage to Miss Ester Delassus, of Patoka, a lady of most excellent culture and accomplishments.
As a result of his years of hard and steady work, Charles Dean has brought his farm of eighty acres to a high degree of productiveness and has gained a wide reputation as a stockdealer, rivaling in this respect the excellent reputation of his father before him. Although a Democrat in politics, Mr. Dean has never given any attention to questionable political methods, standing at all times for a square deal for everybody concerned. He and his wife are members of the Methodist denomination and are held in high esteem by both neighbors and friends.
Extracted 27 May 2019 by Norma Hass from 1909 Biographical and Reminiscent History of Richland, Clay and Marion Counties, Illinois, pages 429-430.