Hon. Charles C. Wilson, a distinguished attorney and counselor at law at Kewanee, was born at North Wrentham, Mass., Sept. 18, 1829, and was the eldest of five sons and one daughter, and has one sister older than himself, the progeny of Enoch and Abigail (Richardson) Wilson. The father was also a native of north Wrentham, and the mother of Portland, Mr., and of old Puritan ancestry.
Enoch Wilson’s father was Jared Wilson, Sr., who is known in history as a soldier of the Revolution, in which service he, with several others from Wrentham, was a man picked for the Marquis de La Fayette’s Corps of Light Infantry. He was present at the laying of the corner-stone of Bunker Hill Monument, among the venerable men so eloquently addressed by Daniel Webster. In that battle Jared Wilson’s father, Samuel Wilson, of Dover, was also a soldier. Enoch Wilson, the Judge’s father, died in his native town in 1858, at the age of 69 years, and Abigail R. Wilson at the home of one of her sons at Creston, Iowa, in 1884, at the age of 84 years.
   Of the four brothers of our subject we learn the following facts; and though the province of this work is not to trace the various branches of any family, we feel justified in encroaching somewhat upon space. The youngest brother of C. C. is an attorney at Creston, Iowa, while the other three are all physicians and surgeons of more or less distinction. One of them is located at Havana, Cuba, another at  Osceola, Iowa, and a third at Creston, Iowa.
   C. C. Wilson was educated in the common schools of Massachusetts and in an academic course. In 1850 he came to Illinois, and in Stark County purchased six quarter-sections of land, which he sold in 1854, and began reading law. From 1856 to 1858 he was in his native State, attending lectures at the Harvard Law School, and in 1859 returned to Illinois to be admitted to the Bar. He began practice in Bureau County, but in 1860 removed into Kewanee, where he has since made his home. His first public service in this county was as District Attorney for the Fifth Judicial District from 1864 to 1868.
   In 1868 President Johnson appointed him Chief Justice of Utah, and from that time to 1870 he presided with ability and to the entire satisfaction of the Bar of that Territory and credit to himself; but differing somewhat with General Grant as to the Executive’s right to dictate to the Judiciary, he, in August of 1870, resigned and came home. Judge Wilson has always been characteristic for his public spirit, and in his profession occupies a high stand-point. For several years he was president of the Kewanee Manufacturing Company, and was one of the three men who organized the Anderson Steam heater Company, now known as the Haxtun Steam Heater Company.
He is a Republican of the most pronounced type, a speaker of rare force and ability, fully abreast with the times in all public affairs, and is strongly spoken of as the probable successor of General T. J. Henderson in Congress.
Judge Wilson was married at Wrentham, Mass., Jan. 20, 1850, to Miss Maria N. Benham, a native of Vermont, and has born to him seven children;  Jennie M., Abbie E., Mrs. S. P. Samuelson, of New Windsor, Ill., Laura M., Charles E., Cora A., George F., and Edward H.
Pg. 688   1885 Portrait & Biographical Album of Henry Co., Illinois


Transcribed by Jan Roggy

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