Michael Hartzell, a prominent citizen of Moline , was born in Westmoreland Co., Pa. , Aug. 21, 1810 , his parents being Adam and Catharine (Bush) Hartzell. He was brought up on a farm and at mechanical work ; came to Illinois in 1835, landing at Rock Island April 30. The place was not yet named, there being only five or six cabins on the bottom land. He erected a hewed-log house, two stories high—the first two-story structure in the place.

In the spring of 1836 he returned to the East, where he was married May 5, that year, to Miss Nancy W., daughter of John and Margaret (Worman) Stopher, who was a native of Westmoreland Co., Pa. He soon afterward returned to Illinois , and for the first five years resided in Rock Island ; then moved upon a claim in Iowa , where he passed four years; then was one year in this county on a farm, and came in the spring of 1843 to Moline.That village was laid out the year following.

Mr. and Mrs. Hartzell became the parents of 13 children, namely: Margaret S., who was born in Rock Island, then called " Stephenson," May 22, 1837 ; John W., who is married and lives in Wichita, Kan.; Rev. Joseph C,, who married Jennie Culver, and is now residing in Cincinnati, Ohio; Mary, now Mrs. John Rapp; Asenath, now the wife of William W. Wallace, and residing at Little Rock, Ark.; Eva, the wife of T. J. Hayes, of Louisville, Kan.; Alice, now Mrs. L. L. McCoy, of Moline; Lizzie P., who became the wife of T. A. Wallace, of Davenport, and died June 28, 1881; Lillie D., her twin sister; Esther, the wife of John F. Jaques, and resides at Clinton, Iowa; and Frank H., who married Jennie Cooper, and resides at Wichita, Kan.

Mr. Hartzell was formerly in the undertaker's business, being the first in that line in Rock Island . In his political views he is a Republican, with Prohibition sympathies. He united with the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1832, and his wife united with that denomination a short time previously.

Rev. Joseph C. Hartzell, D. D., attended the Northwestern University at Evanston, Ill., and graduated in 1860, at the Garrett Biblical Institute there. Thence he visited Bloomington ,Ill., and graduated at the Illinois Wesleyan University there, spending seven years in those two institutions of learning; then joined the Central Illinois Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church. His first appointment was at Pekin , III., but was thence transferred to New Orleans , to take charge of Ames Chapel, when its pastor, Rev. J. P. Newman, was appointed Chaplain under Gen. Grant. During six years he edited the Southwestern Christian Advocate, after which the paper was turned over to the Methodist Book Concern, and Mr. Hartzell was appointed Presiding Elder for that district, which position he held until elected Assistant Secretary of the Freedmen's Aid Society, with headquarters at Cincinnati, where he still remains, an able, eloquent and energetic worker in the cause.

Mr. J. Wesley Hartzell was born Oct. 6, 1839 , in Iowa , but was brought up, attended school and graduated at Moline , Ill. He was engaged in farming, teaching school and in the livery business until 1877, when he emigrated to Kansas, settling at Topeka, where he remained until 1883, during which time he became proprietor of the Tefft House in that city, which was the political headquarters of the State.

Selling out to the veteran landlord of Davenport Iowa,—Mr. Burtis,—Mr. Hartzell then became owner and manager of the Topeka Freight, Omnibus and Baggage Lines, working 40 horses, having charge of the consignment of all freight of the Atchison, To­ peka & Santa Fe Railroad at that point, and sale of the dead freight of that railroad between Colorado, New Mexico and the Missouri River. He then organized a company, and projected and built the street horse railroad in Topeka , his associates in that enterprise being S. W, Wheelock, of Moline , Ill.; W. B. Strong, President; George O. Manchester, Assis­ tant General Manager ; and E. Wilder, Treasurer of the Santa Fe Railroad. In 1882 Mr. Hartzell ob­ tained the franchise, organized a company and built the water works in Topeka, meantime laying off and establishing a beautiful park (bearing his name) in that city.

Within the space of 18 months he obtained franchises, organized companies, built and had in successful operation roads in Wichita, Emporia, Kan., and Caithage, Mo. He is now President of Wichita, McPherson & Denver Railroad, for which road bonds to the amount of $4,000 per mile is voted for 100 miles, from Wichita to Elmore.

Just at present Mr. Hartzell is in Moline, Ill., energetically engaged in organizing a new street railroad to and between Moline and Rock Island, with excellent chances of success.

H. Frank Hartzell is a graduate of the Moline High School, learned the telegraph business, but when 16 years old migrated to Topeka, Kan., and clerked in the Tefft House until his brother sold out the hotel, whereupon he became Secretary of the Topeka Freight and Omnibus Lines, then Secretary of the Wichita Horse Railroad Co. until 1883, when he obtained the mail contract for delivery of mail in Topeka, which position he held until March 5, 1884, when he returned to Wichita and organized the Kansas Furniture Company, of which he is now Secretary. The firm are wholesale and retail dealers in furniture, and are doing a prosperous business.


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Illinois Ancestors