JAMES CRUSE, farmer, P. O. Mill Creek, Union County. Grandfather Cruse came from Ireland and located in Georgia, where Moses Cruse, the father of subject, was born. The latter remained there until a young man, and then came to what was then Johnson County, now Union County. There he married a Miss Rebecca Miller, a native of North Carolina, some of whose ancestors came from Germany. She was the mother of seven children, four of whom are living, and of that number subject was the third, and was born February 7, 1846. When subject was about five years old, his father moved to a farm about a mile and a half east of Mill Creek, in Union County, where he resided until his death. Our subject attended the subscription schools but little, and received but a slight education. When he was about eighteen years of age, he went to Jonesboro and apprenticed himself to learn the blacksmith trade. He worked for about a year and a half, when, finding that the trade did not agree with him, he came back to the home farm and helped his father there until he was about twenty-five years of age. At that age, he purchased his first farm, a tract of forty acres situated about a mile from Mill Creek, in Section 5, Township 14 south, Range 1 west, Alexander County. This place has since been increased to a farm of 116 acres, which he devotes chiefly to farming. Our subject was married in 1826 to Mary Freeze, daughter of Daniel and Elizabeth Freeze, both natives of North Carolina. She was the mother of one child, Peter, born February 12, 1859. This lady died in 1861, and Mr. Cruse was married the second time, to Lydia O. Freeze, a sister of his first wife. This lady is the mother of five children — Josephine. James J., Norwood, Melissa and Mattie. In politics, Mr. Cruse is a Democrat.
Extracted 29 Mar 2017 by Norma Hass from 1883 History of Alexander, Union, and Pulaski Counties, Illinois, page 220.
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