LUTHER ALLEN DELONG, a veteran of the late war, is associated with the agricultural interests of Calhoun County, owning and occupying a good farm on section 16, in the northwestern part of Gilead Precinct. He was born on Coon Creek, five miles south of Fielden, Jersey County, Ill., on the 26th of February, 1846. His father, Luther B. Delong, was a native of Ohio, and his birthplace was near Portsmouth. He was a son of John Delong, who was either born in France or in this country, of French parentage. He was a pioneer farmer of Ohio but finally came to Illinois and located near Peoria where he died. The father of our subject was reared and married in Ohio and there learned the trade of a house carpenter. He came to Illinois about 1840 with teams, and settled in Jersey County, where he established himself at his trade. He bought a tract of Governnient land, and on it erected a log house in which our subject was born. He continued to work at carpentering in the winter and engaged in farming the rest of the year, making his home there the remainder of his life. The maiden name of his wife was Mary Ann Smith, and she was also born near Portsmouth, Ohio, and is still living on the home farm in Jersey County.
Luther Delong was reared and educated in his native county, and lived with his parents until he was sixteen years of age. He then started out in life for himself, and coming to Calhoun County was employed on a farm until October 10, 1864. That was the date of his enlistment in the army, when he became a member of Company G, Forty-second Illinois Infantry. He fought in several battles and displayed excellent soldierly qualities, being always brave, cool and collected in time of danger. In the month of December following his entrance into the army, he was unfortunately taken prisoner and during the remainder of the war suffered all the horrors of life at Andersonville. After the close of hostilities he was released from that prison, and was mustered out at Springfield, June 30, 1865.
After his experience of life on Southern battlefields and in a rebel prison, our subject returned to this county, and gladly took up his old pursuit. He was engaged as a farmer on rented land some seventeen years, until he bought his present farm in 1880. It is under admirable tillage and he has greatly increased its value since it came in his possession by the many improvements he has placed upon it, making it one of the most desirable farms in the neighborhood. A view of the fine homestead is presented on another page.
Mr. Delong and Miss Mary Early, were married January 23, 1866. Mrs. Delong was a native of Lincoln County. Mo., and a daughter of John Early, who was born and reared in the State of Virginia. He went to Missouri in the early days of the settlement of Lincoln County, and there bought a tract of land near Troy, on which he resided until his death. His wife survives him and makes her home with her children in this county. In her maiden days she was Mary Holcomb, and she is a native of Kentucky. The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Delong has been blessed to them by the following children: James H., William A., Winnie E. and Carl Logan. Mrs. Delong is a sincere Christian and an active member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Mr. Delong is a true Republican in his political views. His war record is commemorated by his connection with Calhoun Post. No. 448, G. A. R., of which he was a charter member, and he is Commander of the post. He is also identified with the A. F. & A. M., belonging to Calhoun Lodge, No. 792. He is an intelligent, upright man, and is highly regarded by the entire community.
Extracted 16 Mar 2017 by Norma Hass from Portrait and Biographical Album of Pike and Calhoun Counties, Illinois, published in 1891, pages 628-631
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