S. E. Brown who has been actively engaged in business inForreston for many years, is one of the honored sons of that place,and his life is a verification of the fact that the inevitablelaw of destiny accords to a tireless energy, industry, and abilitya successful career. Prominent in business circles of Forrestonstands Mr. Brown, who conducts a restaurant, bakery, and confectionaryat that place. He was born August 11, 1844, in Schuylkill County,Pennsylvania, and at the early age of two years was left motherless.Upon reaching his fourteenth year he was apprenticed to the shoemakingtrade, at which he worked until 1864, when on the 13th of September,he enlisted in Company H, Two Hundred and Tenth Regiment, PennsylvaniaState Volunteers. Shortly after entering the service he was takenill and sent to the regimental hospital, but owing to the lingeringcondition of his disease he was transferred to the McDougal GeneralHospital, from whence he was discharged, and also mustered outof service, receiving his dischargepapers May 31, 1865. In 1865he returned to Dauphin County, and worked in the coal mines fromthe spring of that year until fall, when he again took up histrade of shoemaking, which he pursued throughout the winter of1865-1866.
On the sixth of April, 1866, Mr. Brown came to Illinoisto join his brother who had preceded him, and settled at Lanark,Carroll County. Upon joining him, he worked as a farm laboreruntil 1867, when he was employed by Jonas Beck, for whom he workedthe following eight months. On the 24th of November, 1867, hewas united in marriage to Miss Nancy Byers, a daughter of J. G.Byers, a pioneer settler of Ogle County, and at that time a prosporousfarmer of Brookville Township. Two children have blessed thismarriage, namely: Agnes, living at home; and John William, expressagent at Forreston for the American Express Company. In the fallof 1868 Mr. Brown rented a farm of eighty acres in BrookvilleTownship, which he subsequently increased to one hundred and twentyacres, and which he worked until 1894. On the eighth of Januaryhe removed to Forreston and went into busines in the locationwhich he now owns and occupies. Mr. Brown is one of a family ofsix children. George, the eldest is deceased. J. P. is a prosporousfarmer in Otter Creek, Carroll County, Illinois. David is a farmerin Dauphin County, Pennsylvania. Sarah is the wife of E. O. Reedy,of Kewanee, Illinois. Susanna is deceased. The sixth child isthe subject of this sketch.
Mr. Brown votes the Republican ticket, and cast his firstballot for Ulysses S. Grant. He is a self-made man, and his valuablefarm lands in Iowa, and the business property in Forreston arethe results of his energy and good management, ably assisted byhis wife, who seconds his efforts by her constant zeal and activity.He is among the most progressive and public spirited citizensof Forreston, and gives his support and cooperation to measurestending toward its growth and development.