Past & Present


bers of the Christian church, to which her parents also belonged, and Mr. Stone served as deacon in the church for a number of years, while his father was an elder. His interest in various church activities was deep and sincere and he also contributed generously according to his means to its support. His death was deeply regretted by many friends as well as his immediate family for his life was such as commanded the good will and confidence of those with whom he was associated. Mrs. Stone owns two hundred and forty acres of fine land and has a beautiful home where she resides a mile south of Pittsfield. She leases most of the land, but she keeps forty head of cattle, some hogs and horses. She has always been a very industrious woman and her labors were of great benefit to her husband in his active business career.


Dr. J. Smith Thomas, a member of the medical fraternity and one of the oldest practitioners of Pike county, having been located at Pleasant Hill for thirty-four years, has resided in this village for a much longer period, having taken up his abode here in 1849. He was born in Pike county, Missouri, near Louisiana, on the 26th of August, 1845. His father, Dr. John A. Thomas, was a native of Virginia, born April 8, 1818, while the grandfather, Cornelius Thomas, was likewise born in the Old Dominion, and was a son of Charles Thomas, who was one of the heroes of the Revolution. The family is of Welsh descent, and from the same ancestry is descended General George H. Thomas, who was one of the prominent commanders of the Union forces in the Civil war.

Dr. John A. Thomas came to the Mississippi valley with his father, Cornelius Thomas, about 1833, and settled in Pike county, Missouri. He was then a young man, and taking up the study of medicine, he afterward engaged in practice in Pike county, Missouri, for a few years. In 1849, however, he moved across the river to Pike county, Illinois, settling at Pleasant Hill, where he continued in the active prosecution of his profession for a considerable period. He had a large and lucrative practice and was recognized as one of the prominent physicians of this county, his business extended for miles around. In many a household he was the loved family physician, whose aid could always be counted upon and whose labor was an efficient and potent element in checking the ravages of disease and restoring health. He was twice married, his first union being with Miss Sarah E. Griffith, whom he wedded in Missouri. Her birth occurred in Pike county, that state, her parents being Joel and Mary (Smith) Griffith, who had removed from Kentucky to Missouri. Mrs. Thomas died in Pleasant Hill, Illinois. Four children had been born of that union. Subsequently Dr. John A. Thomas married Miss Sophia Blair of Barry, Illinois, a daughter of Ex- Senator Blair, of Pike county, Illinois. She was educated in Jacksonville (Illinois) Female College, from which she graduated, and later she became one of the teachers and afterward professor of mathematics in that institution, which position she held prior to her marriage to Dr. Thomas. Of the Masonic fraternity Dr. Thomas was a leading representative at Pleasant Hill. He was also a prominent member of the Baptist church, and his life was ever honorable and upright. He was an ardent supporter of the cause of prohibition, fearlessly expressing his opinions, and doing much good along this line, the effects of which are still preceptible in Pleasant Hill. An active and useful career was terminated by his death on the 25th of February, 1888, his remains being interred in Pleasant Hill cemetery. Great regret was felt throughout the community, because he had so endeared himself to many patrons and friends as to make his demise the occasion of a feeling of personal loss to all who knew him. His widow still survives him, and now resides with her son, C. C. Thomas, upon the old homestead.

Dr. J. Smith Thomas is the eldest of the family of four children born of his father's first marriage. The others are: Lizzie, who became the wife of T. J. Shultz and died in 1905; Mary, who became the wife of H. C. Moore and died in 1905; and C. J. Tomas, of Pleasant Hill. By the father's second marriage there were three children: A.

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