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DRENNAN, William

DRENNAN, William[1, 2]

Male 1797 - 1876  (78 years)

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  • Name DRENNAN, William 
    Born 15 Oct 1797  Pendleton Dist, SC, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Gender Male 
    Died 28 Sep 1876  Sangamon, IL, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Notes 
    • History of William Drennan and Mary Thomas in Sangamon County, IL

      William and Mary were married about 1790. Six of their children were born in the Pendelton district (South Carolina), and they moved to Caldwell county, KY, about 1803, where they had six children. In the fall of 1817, they moved to Illinois, first stopping on Wood river, about two miles from Alton, in Madison county. Their destination was the San-ga-ma country, but it was more economical to remain idle that winter than to move up, and thus incur the necessity of hauling provisions for themselves and stock. Early in 1818 William Drennan, his half brother, Joseph Drennan, his son-in-law, Joseph Dodds, and George Cox, left their families near Alton, and, with their teams, farming implements, provisions, and all the young men and boys belonging to the families who were able to assist in making a home, started, piloted by a white man named William Moore, who had belonged to a company that had been over the country before, in fighting the Indians. He was called an Indian Ranger. Arriving at Sugar creek, they took a day or two for exploring, and on March 10, 1818, drove to the spot on which William Drennan built his cabin and which proved to be section 32, town 14, range 5 west, when the government made its survey. It is on the northwest side of Sugar creek, and about twelve miles nearly due south of Springfield, and near where the Sugar creek Cumberland Presbyterian church now stands. Immediately after their arrival they built two cabins. One was occupied by George Cox alone. The other was occupied for the summer by William and Joseph Drennan and Joseph Dodds. That was the one spoken of as belonging to William Drennan. As they had not the slightest idea of cultivating the prairie, these three men agreeed to clear all the land they could in one body, and have a crop from it that year in common, with the understanding that before another year they were all to work together until an equal sized piece was cleared for the other two. They cleared the timber from about fifteen acres, fenced it, plowed as well as they could among the roots and stumps with a little short wooden mould board plow, and planted it in corn and pumpkins. The soil in the timber was very light -- so much so that in some places they would almost sink in over their shoes. In fencing this land, they inclosed about three-fourths of an acre of prairie. After they had plowed and planted their crop, one of the men suggested that it was quite a waste to have that under fence and nothing growing on it, and proposed that they break it up and plan something on it. In order to make sure work, they uncoupled one of their wagons, hitched four horses to the forward wheels, and fastened their wooden mould board plow to the axle. They soon found this was a failure.

      Try as they would, the plow would not center the sod, and they reluctantly gave it up. While they were taking off the team and plow, one of the boys, full of fun and mischief, took up a hoe and began to shave the grass off, saying he could break the prairie with his hoe. That suggested an idea to one of the men, and he, also, took a hoe and began shaving the grass. It was the work of but a few minutes to remove the sod from a spot several feet in diameter. He then called one of the othermen, and proposed that, as they were well advanced with their work, and there were seven or eight of them, and all had hoes, that they call all hands together , and shave the grass from the whole piece, plant something on it, and see what would be the result. The man spoken to first, laughed at the idea as ridiculous, but after studying a moment, he fell in with it, and the men and boys were all called up, and the grass shaved off, holes dug, and corn and pumpkin seed planted. They did not tought it any more; that killed the grass. The crop was fully twice as much in proportion to the area, as that planted among the stumps, and the next spring it broke up the nicest of any land they had ever seen. This taught them an important lesson, and caused them to make greater exertions to induce some one to invent a plow that would break up the prairie. I have this account from the venerable William Drennan, who was one of the young men that assisted in doing the work, and who has lived in sight of the spot to the present time. Several years elapsed before a plow was invented that would do good work at breaking. In the mean time the early settlers continued clearing their land, that they might have it to cultivate, and were always uneasy for fear their timber would be exhausted.

      There can be but little doubt that the same labor required to destroy the timber on one acre would have shaved the grass from two acres, with no better implements than a hoe. They could, by that means, have had better land to cultivate, twice the quantity of grain raised, and saved their timber, but the probability is they never thought of it. After the provisions they brought with them were exhausted, one fo their number would return south, load a couple of horses with provisions, salt, and other indispensibles, in regular pack saddle style, and bring them to their new home. The distance was between sixty and seventy miles. They brought cows in the spring, and had plenty of milk. Wild honey was abundant, and Mr. Drennan told the writer that two of their number would cut down a hollow tree where bees had stored their wealth, and with a few hours work, would bring in from two to five gallons of honey. While they were doing this, others of their number would be looking for more bee trees, so that they always had four or five trees ahead, and knew just where to go when they needed more honey. For meat, they would hunt as the necessitieis required, some times one, and often all would hunt. In warm weather they would take venison, the breast of turkeys and geese, cut the meat into thin slices, sprinkle a small quantity of salt on it, and dry it on a frame work of sticks about three feet hight, setting the frame in the sun, with a smouldering fire underneath. In this way the meat would soon be cured, and ready for use at any time. This they called jerked meat, a considerable supply of which could be kept on hand. Fresh meat, jerked meat, milk, honey and bread, constituted their bill of fare during the first summer. As trips were made back and forth, some fo the younger sons and those who had families were brought to the new settlements. After the crops were cultivated, the men who had families returned to them, leaving the unmarried men and boys to take care of the property. The four men who came up in the spring, all brought their wives and childern in the fall of that year. Mr. Cox arrived first, Joseph Drennan next, and, William Drennan, with his son-in-law, Joseph Dodds, came together, arriving Dec. 3, 1818. Of the twelve childeren of William Drennan, Sen.---

      Mattie, born in South Carolina, married in Kentucky.

      Samuel

      William, born Oct 15, 1797, in Pendleton district, SC, came to Kentucky, and from there to Sangamon county with his father, arriving March 10, 1818 in what is now Ball township. He was married May 30, 1822, in Sanagamon county to Margaret Anderson. They had twelve childern, all born in Sanagmon county, viz: James A., born Aug 6, 1828, married Dec 8, 1853, to Rachel Cannan. They have six children, Jannetta F, Mary E, Robert W, Minnie W, Ira and Frederick, and reside in Ball township, five miles northeast of Auburn. Samuel, born Oct. 30, 1829, went to the Pacific coast in 1852, and was married there May 28,1868 to Lousia Fernald, who was born April 4, 1839 in North Berwick, Maine. They have three children, Edith A., Mabel L, and Dora A, and reside in Santa Cruz county, Ca. John T, born Jan 14, 1832, enlisted August 9, 1862 at Chatham, in Co. I, 73d Ill INf, for theree years. He was wounded at the battle of Chickamauga, Sept 20, 1863, lay five days on the battlefied, before medical aid was given. He recovered, but is permanently disabled. He was dischard on account of physical disability, June 16, 1864, and resides with his parents in Ball Township...

      "History of the Early Settlers, Sanagamon County, Illinois, "Centenial Record"" 1876
    Person ID I92  Hugh Byrne and Nanette Asimov Lines
    Last Modified 6 Sep 2019 

    Father DRENNAN, William,   b. 9 Apr 1768, Pendleton District, South Carolina Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 23 Oct 1847, Sangamon, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years) 
    Mother THOMAS, Mary,   b. 13 Jan 1771,   d. 21 Oct 1856, Sangamon, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 85 years) 
    Married 1790  [3
    Notes 
    • Marriage
      Date: 1790
      Place: Pendleton Dist, South Carolina, USA«s103 Online publication - Ancestry.com. OneWorldTree [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc.»
    Family ID F54  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family ANDERSON, Margaret L,   b. 28 Mar 1806, Rockbridge, VA, USA (Alt Botetourt Co, VA) Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 28 Aug 1881, Sangamon, IL, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years) 
    Married 30 May 1822  Sangamon Co, IL Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. DRENNAN, James Anderson,   b. 6 Aug 1828, Sangamon, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 15 Aug 1903, Glen Arm, Sangamon, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 75 years)
     2. DRENNAN, Samuel,   b. 30 Oct 1829, Chatam, Sangamon, IL, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 Sep 1891, Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, California, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 61 years)
     3. DRENNAN, John T,   b. 13 Jan 1832, Sangamon, IL, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Feb 1906, Fresno, California Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 74 years)
     4. DRENNAN, Wm,   b. 7 Mar 1833, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 28 Sep 1876, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 43 years)
     5. DRENNAN, Martha A,   b. 25 Apr 1835, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 Aug 1888, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 53 years)
     6. DRENNAN, Rebecca,   b. 3 May 1837, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Nov 1917  (Age 80 years)
     7. DRENNAN, Margaret,   b. 30 Jan 1839, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 18 Sep 1884  (Age 45 years)
     8. DRENNAN, Nancy,   b. 29 Nov 1840, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 15 Aug 1923  (Age 82 years)
     9. DRENNAN, Francis Newton,   b. 5 Jul 1845, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 Jan 1914  (Age 68 years)
     10. DRENNAN, Mary Elizabeth,   b. 24 Mar 1847, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 31 Mar 1919  (Age 72 years)
     11. DRENNAN, Emily Jane,   b. 18 May 1851, Sangamon, IL USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Apr 1923  (Age 71 years)
    Last Modified 6 Sep 2019 
    Family ID F53  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 15 Oct 1797 - Pendleton Dist, SC, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 30 May 1822 - Sangamon Co, IL Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 28 Sep 1876 - Sangamon, IL, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S103] One World Tree (sm), Ancestry.com, (Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., n.d.), Online publication - Ancestry.com. OneWorldTree [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc.

    2. [S104] OneWorldTree, Ancestry.com. One World Tree (sm) [database online]. Provo, UT: MyFamily.com, Inc.

    3. [S125] U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900, Yates Publishing, (Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2004), Online publication - Yates Publishing. U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2004.Original data - This unique collection of records was extracted from a variety of sources including family group sheets and electronic databases. Originally, the information was derived from an array of materials including pedigree charts, family history articles, querie.




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