I'm not related. I help out with the DeWitt County website and I'm just passing this along.
August 13, 1909
DeWitt County, Illinois
OLDEST MAN IN THE COUNTY DEAD.
William R. Dillavou, Almost a Centennarian,
Claimed to Be Oldest Soldier of Rebellion,
Passes Away Sunday Night.
Wm. Dillavou died at his home southwest of the city Sunday evening at 8 o’clock. His native state was New Jersey, having been born in Salem county December 3, 1810.
What changes have come during this life of almost a century; Madison the fourth president was in the second year of his first term; he was two years old when the second war with Great Britain began—the war of 1812. Three years before his birth Fulton sailed up the Hudson and 7 years before the Louisiana Purchase was made and was a lad of 5 when Jackson whipped the British at New Orleans.
He was 52 years of age in 1862 when he enlisted in Company F 107th Illinois Volunteers and served until the close of the civil war. He was possessed of wonderful vitality and could read and write until a short time before his death. His final sickness was but of a few days’ duration.
When but eight years of age his parents came west, first settling in Ohio and later in Indiana where the family remained 20 years, where he married his first wife. In 1850 they came to Illinois settling near the town of Mt. Pleasant, now Farmer City, thence in 2 or 3 years to Creek township where the wife died in 1854. In 1858 he was married to Martha Parker who died in 1890. Two years later, Mrs. James Klagg [aka Clagg] became his wife, who survives him. He was the father of 7 children, five of whom are living. They are John T. Dillavou, Kansas; Luther Dillavou, Iowa; Mary Jane Hughes, Seneca, Kansas; Nancy Ann Glenn, Clinton; and Dickson living at home.
“Uncle Billy,” as he was known to all, united with the M. E. Church in 1827, being identified with that church until his death, a period of 82 years, much longer than the allotted span of mortal man. His membership at the time of his death was with the Weldon church.
There was no one but earnestly hoped Mr. Dillavou might live to complete his 100 years, since he had so nearly reached it, lacking but one year, 3 months and 25 days of completing the century. His exact age is 98 years, 8 months and five days.
The funeral was held from the M. E. Church in Clinton Tuesday afternoon, Rev. J. A. Lucas of Lincoln officiating. The pall bearers were veterans of the civil war: W. O. Rogers, Jno. M. Porter, George Homer, Robert Fields, John Craft and Allen Bess. The G. A. R. and W. R. C. attended in a body and interment was in Woodlawn cemetery.
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