W. R. Wills (Page 1)


Was born in the state of New York, in 1810. At the age of eight years his parents moved to Ohio and remained eleven years. When nineteen years of age he started south in company with a younger brother, A. V. Wills, and arrived at New-Orleans, where they remained for several months. Mr. W. R. Wills returned north, locating in Pike county, Illinois, where he worked as a laborer for six years. In 1836 he was married to Miss Sarah M. Coles, who was born in the state of New Hampshire, in 1810. After his marriage he rented a farm in Atlas township, Pike county, and went to farming. In July of the same year, his wife died. Being thus left alone in the world, he sold what effects he had, and took a trip east, remaining about eight months, when he again returned to Pike county and engaged in trading in various ways until 1838, when he was married to Miss L. D. Scott, who was born in the state of New York, in 1812, and came to Illinois in 1818. After his second marriage he settled in Florence, on the Illinois river, and engaged in coopering, which he continued for two years, and then removed to Rockport, Pike county, and engaged as general superintendent of coopering, milling, pork-packing, etc. He continued in this business for about three years when, becoming tired of working for others, he purchased a farm near, Summer Hill, in Atlas township, on section 12, where he engaged in farming and stock-raising. Here he remained for six years, and then sold his farm in Atlas, and bought a large and valuable tract of land in Pittsfield township, in sections 20 and 2:, where he has resided ever since, extensively and successfully engaged in farming and stock-raising. He has seen many ups and downs in life, but being a man of untiring energy, he has succeeded in becoming one of the heavy land holders of Pike county. In 1840, he joined the temperance society of Pittsfield, and has never used one drop of intoxicating liquors as a beverage since. Mr. Wills is looked upon as one of Pike county's best citizens, and a good farmer. He is a man of enterprise and general usefulness.