Among those who are classed with the prominent and representative men of Ford county mention should be made of Albert Gilmore, now a retired farmer living in Gibson City. Coming to Illinois during the pioneer epoch in the history of this county, he purchased wild, unbroken prairie land at a low figure and has profited by its rise in value until he is one of the wealthy men of this part of the state, having very extensive landed possessions, for he has placed his capital in the safest of all investments — real estate. He was born in Harrison county, Ohio, near Cadiz, on the 26th of January, 1841, and is a son of Nathaniel and Mary (Craig) Gilmore. His grandfathers in both the paternal and maternal lines came from Ireland. His paternal grandfather, Samuel Gilmore, was born in County Cavan, Ireland, and on coming to America located in Pennsylvania. He married Miss Elizabeth Buchanan, a native of that state, and they were among the early settlers of Harrison county, Ohio, where they located in 1803, there residing until called from this life. They made their way westward when there was but little travel across the mountains into Ohio and more remote districts known as the Northwest Territory, and they aided in reclaiming that region from the rule of the savages and converting it into a land of civilization. Samuel Gilmore was a soldier of the war of 1812 and the hard service and exposure of army life so undermined his health that he died September 6, 1814, only four days after his return from the war. In his family were seven children, six of whom reached adult age, but none are now living.
Nathanial Gilmore, the father, spent his boyhood and youth in Harrison county, Ohio, and in 1827 gained a companion and helpmate for life's journey by his marriage to Mary Craig, the daughter of John Craig. Twenty years later they removed to Belmont county, Ohio, where Nathaniel Gilmore engaged in farming and stock-raising for five years. He then took up his residence near LeRoy in McLean county, Illinois, in 1852, but was not long permitted, to enjoy his new home, as he died November 5, 1855, his grave being made in the Gilmore cemetery on the old homestead, where a monument marks his last resting place. His wife long survived him and ever remained true to his memory. Her death occurred December 21, 1884. In politics Mr. Gilmore was a democrat, progressive in citizenship and successful in business, accumulating a handsome estate. His family numbered twelve children: Samuel and Jane E., both of whom are now deceased; John, who was born in 1832 and is a retired farmer of Webster City, Iowa, deriving a substantial income from three good farms; Rachel, who has also passed away; Craig, one of the wealthy agriculturists and extensive landowners of Ford county, living in Drummer township three miles north of Gibson City; Sarah, deceased; Albert, of this review; William, living in Eldorado, Kansas; Mary A. and Johnson, both deceased; one who died in infancy; and Ephraim, a resident of Lee, Indiana, who is engaged in the ditching business. He owns twenty-eight hundred acres of swamp land, which he is now draining, and the ditch when completed will be fourteen miles long. It will reclaim a district that will be rich and productive soil and can be made very valuable.
Albert Gilmore largely acquired his education in the district schools and also spent two terms as a student in the Wesleyan University at Bloomington, Illinois, and in 1863 engaged in teaching school. Through the periods of vacation he was trained to the work of the homestead and after teaching engaged in farming at home. Subsequent to the father's death the children conducted the farm for about fifteen years, on the expiration of which period three brothers, William, John and Albert Gilmore, came to Ford county and in 1864 purchased sixteen hundred acres of wild land. The unsettled and unimproved condition of this section of the state made it possible for them to purchase the property at from four dollars and twenty-five cents to eight dollars per acre. With characteristic energy they began its development and cultivation but Albert Gilmore did not make Ford county his home until 1870, when he took up his abode within its borders. About 1866 the brothers purchased six hundred acres in Champaign county, four hundred acres of which was broken. The four brothers worked together, carrying on their business interests thus until 1870, when the land was divided, Albert Gilmore's share being five hundred and twenty acres. As he has recognized opportunity for judicious and profitable investment he has since added to his property from time to time until he is one of the most extensive landholders in this part of the state, his possessions aggregating two thousand acres in Ford and McLean counties, about eighteen hundred and thirty acres being in Ford county. He also owns twenty-two hundred and forty acres in Kansas, one thousand four hundred and sixty-seven acres in Missouri near Quincy, three hundred and twenty acres in Minnesota, three thousand acres in Canada and other property. He has always carried on farming and stock-raising, keeping only high grade stock, and the development of his fields and his livestock interests have both proved sources of profit.
On the 18th of February, 1880, Mr. Gilmere was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Boundy, who was born near Peoria, Illinois, June 19, 1858, and is a daughter of William and Elizabeth (Hill) Boundy, who were of English descent. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Gilmore have been born six children: Samuel, who attended school in Indianapolis, Indiana, and lives upon his father's farm northwest of Gibson City; Emma Josephine, at home, who is a graduate of the Gibson high school and also pursued a course in bookkeeping at Brown's College; Lillie May, who was also a student in bookkeeping in Brown's Business College in Bloomington; William A., who died in 1890; and Cynthia M. and Florence E., both at home.
The parents are members of the First Presbyterian church, to theo support of which they contribute generously. They resided upon the farm until 1905, when they removed to Gibson City, and the following year Mr. Gilmore built a beautiful home. In politics he is a republican, having been a stalwart supporter of the party since age conferred upon him the right of franchise, yet he has never been a politician in the sense of office seeking. He has preferred to concentrate his time and energies upon his business affairs, which have been most carefully and ably conducted. His success has resulted largely from judicious investments and these have come as the result of his sound judgment, which is seldom, if ever, at fault in business transactions. He seems to recognize almost intuitively the value of an opportunity and the possibilities which attend it and his keen sagacity is one of the strongest factors in his splendid success. His life, too, has been characterized by unwearied industry intelligently applied, and the prosperity which he attained should serve to encourage and inspire others, showing the opportunities that lie before the ambitious, determined, industrious American man. His father left about fifteen hundred dollars to each of his children, but aside from this Albert Gilmore received no outside assistance and the success that he has achieved in life is therefore due to his own well directed efforts.

Extracted 19 Oct 2016 by Norma Hass from History of Ford County, Illinois, From Its Earliest Settlement to 1908, author E. A. Gardner, Volume 1, pages 384-389.

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