Minerva Rhodes


Mrs. Minerva Rhodes, widow of Isaac L. Rhodes, passed away at her home in Bardolph at 5:30 o'clock on Wednesday morning, March 1, 1939, at the age of 83 years, 11 months and 29 days. She had been ill with heart trouble and about two weeks ago her condition became more serious.

Funeral services were conducted on Friday at 11:30 am. at Dodworth Funeral Home in Macomb by Rev. Roy W Stocking of Vermont formerly pastor of Bardolph M.E. church. Interment will be at Mound Cemetery.

Minerva Portlock was the daughter of John S. and Mary Ann (Moore) Portlock and was the last of their 12 children to pass on. She was born near Table Grove, on March 2, 1855, and grew to womanhood there. Her parents came to Table Grove from Shelby County, Indiana in 1840, making the long trip through dense wilderness and over swampy prairies in a covered wagon, drawn by a team of horses, three weeks being required for the trip. In the wagon were Mrs. Rhodes' mother and four children and her father, Henry Moore besides all the family's possessions. Mrs. Rhodes father, Dr. John S. Portlock, walked the entire distance carrying an old flint lock rifle to protect the wagon, which held everything dear to them, from hostile Indians and wild beasts.

When Dr. Portlock arrived at this farm 2 1/2 miles north of where Table Grove now stands he built a log cabin for a home and he immediately engaged in the practice of his profession. His first call was on the day of his arrival. He continued to practice until about a year prior to his death 38 years later. He made his calls on horse back and never took pay from servant girls or poor people. His practice as quite extensive but cash receipts from a whole years service looked small compared with what some of our present day surgeons receive from one case. When the Portlock family settled near Table Grove there was but one house in what is now that thriving village and but three houses between their home and Macomb, then a rather insignificant settlement. Two of these houses were east of where Adair now stands and the other was on the McCandles farm, south of Bardolph (then Wolf Grove), now owned by Fred Hager.

On November 3, 1878, Minerva was married to Isaac L. Rhodes. They established their home upon a farm and continued to live in the country until 15 years ago when they located in Bardolph to spend their remaining days. Nine children were born to them, two of whom died in infancy. Those surviving are: Mrs. Pearl Hollar, of Adair; Mrs. Jessie McHendry and Mrs. Bernice Decker, of Bardolph; Walter Rhodes of Rochester, N.Y., Mrs. Grace Boote of Good Hope; Verne Rhodes of Macomb. There also survives ten grandchildren, five great grandchildren and many other relatives and friends. The husband and father passed away on June 20, 1931 bringing to a close a companionship of more than 52 years.

Mrs. Rhodes was faithful member of the Baptist church for more than 50 years. She was a kind and obliging neighbor and a faithful wife and mother, no sacrifice which contributed to the well being and comfort of her loved ones being too great for her to do.

Thus, the life of another of our grand, good pioneer women who played such an important part in transforming the Illinois prairies and wilderness into productive farms and comfortable homes has come to a close.


(Unknown newspaper and date, submitted by Diane Herd)



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