Biography taken from:
PORTRAIT AND BIOGRAPHICAL ALBUM
WARREN COUNTY, ILLINOIS
Full Page Portraits and Biographical Sketches of Prominent and Representative Citizens of the County
Chicago, Chapman Brothers 1885
JOHN R. GRAHAM, one of the oldest settlers in Warren County and a gentleman who has witnessed the wonderful developments the country has made during the last 50 years, and who has shared the privations incident to its early settlement, resides on Section 3, Hale Township. He was born in Greene County, Ohio, January 31, 1817, and continued to reside in his native state until the fall of 1835.
During the year last named, Mr. Graham came to this country and located in Hale Township, where he has since lived. At that time, the hand of civilization had hardly turned a furrow and the land was in its original, natural condition. Having a firm determination in the future development of the county, he "stuck to it", and today lives to witness the fulfillment of a prediction made by him 50 years ago, namely, that Warren County would in time to come be one of the garden spots of the great commonwealth of Illinois. In 1850, he made a trip across the plains to the land of gold and spent 12 months in California and Oregon. The trip was not made for gain, but for health and pleasure, and after returning he located in Hale Township, where he has continued to reside until the present time, a period of almost 50 years from the time he first settled here. He is the proprietor of 340 acres of land located on section 3, Hale Township, the major portion of which is under advanced cultivation; and there in the sunset of his life, he lives, enjoying the comforts which a life of labor, pluck and perseverance enabled him to procure.
The marriage of Mr. Graham took place in Hale Township, March 24, 1842, at which time Miss MARY T. RODGERS became his wife. She was born in the state Missouri, Monroe County, October 4, 1823 and has borne her husband 11 childrenÂ–Elizabeth L. born December 17, 1842; William F., October 31, 1844; Phebe I., February 8, 1847; Andrew R., March 11, 1849; Mary L., February 4, 1852; Aleri R. and John A. twins, August 24, 1854; Emma A., June 11, 1858; Frank E., June 3, 1861; Nannie M. , January 24, 1864; and Eva J., January 1, 1867. William and Andrew are deceased. Elizabeth L. is the widow of John BALMER and resides in Hale Township with her parents; Phebe is the wife of David ARMSTRONG, a farmer living in Nebraska; Mary L. married T. B. MCCULLEY and they reside in Nebraska; John A. is a farmer of Hale Township; Aleri R. is a physician residing in Little York. Emma A. became the wife of George W. HILL, who lives in Nebraska; Frank is a farmer in Hale Township; Nannie became the wife of Joseph W. DAWSON, who follows the vocation of farming in Nebraska; Eva J. lives at home.
Mr. Graham has been Supervisor of Hale Township one year and has held other offices within the gift of the people of this township. He is a Democrat in his political affiliations, and his wife is a member of the United Presbyterian Church.
NOTE: MARY T. RODGERS was the daughter of Aleri Rodgers and Mary DAVIDSON. She died on November 29, 1912. John Ryan Graham's parents were John Graham and Mary Polly RYAN. He died on November 01, 1903. Both John and his wife, Mary are buried at the Sugar Tree Cemetary, Hale Twp, Warren, IL -- Dawnee McCulley