Eugene L. Church, one of the substantial residents of Harvard, has been an important factor in the industrial life of the city. He was born in Walworth County, Wis., eight miles north of Harvard, May 10, 1850, a son of Cyrus and Emily (Russell) Church, natives of Connecticut and Ohio, respectively, who were married in Wisconsin, to which state their families had come in 1836. Cyrus Church and his wife spent their lives on their Wisconsin farm, where he died at the age of eighty-two years. In addition to their son, Eugene L., they had a daughter, now Mrs. J. D. Clark of Harvard. Eugene L. Church was reared on his father’s farm and was given an academic course. For sonic years after reaching maturity he traveled on the the road, but in 1878, came to Harvard to continue the manufacture of several patents, among them a Hay Carrier for use in barns, which he had commenced at Rockford, Ill., two years previously. At different times he had partners, and continued his business until 1900. He manufactured in addition to his carrier, hog tools, and was very successful, dealing with retailers. In 1882 he secured an interest in a flour-mill, but sold it. preferring to devote his attention to his manufacturing. However, during the time he was connected with the mill he had it remodeled, and the new-process machinery installed. During 1881 he built his present residence which is one of the show places of Harvard. Mr. Church owns the double brick block which bears his name and also the site of his former factory, having sold his plant in 1900. At present he is giving some attention to the conduct of his wife’s farm in Wisconsin. Politically, he is a Republican, has represented his ward in the city council, and has been on the school board for twenty-one years. during which period the schools were remodeled and modernized. In 1879 Mr. Church was united in marriage with Anna Hall of Walworth County, Wis., member of one of the pioneer families of that region. She owns the farm her grandfather entered from the government many years ago. Mr. and Mrs. Church have three daughters, namely: Ethel and Eloise, both of whom are at home; and Lucy, who is a teacher, who, after teaching for five years at Fergus Falls, Minn., is now principal of the high school of Geneva, Ill. She is a graduate of Beloit College, and a lady of unusual intellectual endowments, whose success in her chosen field is a source of gratification to her parents.
Source: HISTORY OF McHENRY COUNTY ILLINOIS BY SPECIAL AUTHORS AND CONTRIBUTORS VOLUME II ILLUSTRATED CHICAGO MUNSELL PUBLISHING COMPANY PUBLISHERS 1922
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