Biography - Miles Yandell

MILES J. YANDELL was born in Calloway County, Ky., in 1841, and the same year was brought by his parents to Johnson County, Ill., where he has since made his home. His father, Philander Yandell, was born in North Carolina in 1813 to Samuel Yandell, who was also a native of North Carolina and a farmer by occupation. Samuel Yandell's parents were from England and reared a family of seven sons. He married Miss Sarah Price, who was born in Germany, and soon after their marriage they removed from North Carolina to Kentucky and purchased a farm. Subsequently Mr. Yandell came to southern Illinois, about 1842, following their son Philander, who came to this State in 1841. He was the second child in order of birth of a family of seven children. Samuel was a farmer all his life and died at his own home in Massac County, at sixty-six years of age; many years later his wife followed him to rest, at eighty-four years of age. Of their children, but one still survives, Philander, the father of Miles J. They were honest and industrious farmers and left a fair estate.
The mother of our subject was Frances Rushing in her maiden days and was born in Bedford County, Tenn., was married in Kentucky, and came to Illinois, as before stated, in 1841. Philander came with his own team and entered one hundred and twenty acres of land within two miles of the village where he now lives. He erected a rough log cabin, and in a few years erected a more substantial building of logs, which he finished with weather-boards .and ceiled inside. The land was all new and wild, and his nearest neighbors, Henry Thomas and William Duncan, were three miles away. He cleared up his farm, and in 1859 exchanged it for one hundred and sixty acres in the same township, four miles to the west, where he now lives at the ripe old age of eighty years. He is still able to walk four miles and has been a man of great strength, doing much hard work. He has rarely met his equal in these respects. He lost his wife in 1880, when she was seventy years old. She had borne him four sons and three daughters, of whom they have buried Martha E., who died aged fifteen years, and Esther, wife of Volney N. Vandeve, who died in the spring of 1859, aged twenty-two years, leaving two daughters. The next to die was Joseph H., who was a member of Company K, One Hundred and Twentieth Illinois Infantry, under Capt. Parks. He was a private soldier and served over two years, dying at home March 4, 1865, at the age of twenty-five years. The cause was exposure and overdoing in the Guntown raid, in Mississippi, below Vicksburg. Nathan J. Yandell was a volunteer in the same company and served over three years and died at home in October, 1868, from disease contracted in the army when twenty-three years old. The eldest sister, Mary C. Yandell, died in 1881, aged about forty-eight years.
Mr. Yandell, of this sketch, has one brother living, Samuel F., a farmer on the old homestead near Tunnel Hill, with whom the aged father, Philander, resides. The boyhood of Miles J. was passed on the farm and in the woods and what little education he received was in the subscription schools, with the exception of a few days in the first district school in the county. He has, however, acquired considerable general information. His vocation has been that of a farmer, and he lived at home until his marriage to Lucinda E. Vancleve, a native of Calloway County, Ky., who came to Illinois with her parents when five years old, about 1849. Her father Elder Wilson Vancleve and her mother Nancy J. Lorence, of Kentucky and Tennessee, respectively. The former, who is still living on their first farm in Illinois at the age of seventy-eight years, has been the mother of thirteen children, of whom five sons and four daughters are still living.
Our subject was married in 1859, he in his nineteenth and his wife in her fifteenth year. They have lost one son and three daughters. One daughter, Nona E., passed away suddenly when only fourteen years of age, her death being caused by spinal meningitis. They have living three sons and six daughters, viz.: Wilmoth A., wife of L. L. Smoot, a farmer and a preacher, who has one son and four daughters living; Lewis P., a farmer of Burnside Township, who has a wife and two daughters; Olive E., wife of William Lambert; Nancy F., wife of Henry Dunn, a farmer of Burnside Township, who has one daughter; Madison, at home; Lilly J.; Edgar P.; Bessie A.; and Grace M. Mr. and Mrs. Yandell are living on their farm and at the same time in the village of Ozark. He has been a land speculator, having owned six different farms. He bought his present farm of one hundred and forty acres adjoining the village of Ozark in 1890, and built his present residence upon it close to the village in 1891, and there he carries on general farming, growing corn and wheat, getting from thirty to fifty bushels of corn and from ten to twenty-two bushels of wheat to the acre. He also keeps a few horses, cattle, sheep and hogs. He is a Master Mason, and he and his wife are members of the Missionary Baptist Church. He is a Republican in politics, and cast his first vote for Abraham Lincoln, in 1864.

Extracted from 1893 Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, pages 378-379.

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