The excellent appearance of the farm on section 33, Mona township, which is owned by Mathew Koerner is due to the care and labor which he has bestowed upon the place. He has lived here for more than thirty years and now has a valuable farm property, in the midst of which stands a commodious and attractive residence. Not very far distant are substantial barns and outbuildings, affording ample shelter to grain and stock. Fine trees that now adorn the place were set out by him and the attractive appearance of the farm proves how industrious and energetic has been the life of Mr. Koerner through the years of his residence here.
A native of Baden, Germany, he was born on the 8th of April, 1843, and was the second in a family of five sons whose parents were Michael and Theressa Koerner, who spent their entire lives in Germany. Mathew Koerner remained there during the period of his minority and at the age of twenty-two years came to America, arriving in the United States in 1805. After six months spent in New York he went to Pennsylvania, where for nine months he worked in a livery stable. But thinking to find still broader business opportunities in the middle west, he made his way to Woodford county, Illinois, where he joined relatives who were residing there. For three years he again provided for his support by working as a farm hand by the month and after liis marriage he rented land in Woodford comity for seven years, thus gaining his start in life. His unremitting industry and his careful expenditure brought him the capital that enabled him to purchase eighty acres of land on section 32, Mona township, in 1877. He gave thirty dollars per acre for this property, which is today worth one hundred and fifty dollars. Two years ago he erected his present large and commodious residence, containing nine rooms. It is built in modern style of architecture and is one of the pleasant homes of the township. He has also added substantial barns and sheds to the place and has planted many beautiful trees. His life since 1877 has been devoted to the further development and improvement of this property and he also owns a farm of one hundred and sixty acres in Woodford county, which he purchased two years ago. He raises considerable cane and each fall engages in the manufacture of molasses. Possessing much natural mechanical ingenuity, he can do almost anything with tools, has a good blacksmith shop upon his place and also works in wood, his ability in mechanical lines enabling him to keep everything upon his place in a state of good repair and improvement.
In 1870 was celebrated the marriage of Mathew Koerner and Miss Agatha Summers, who was born in Woodford county, Illinois, October 25, 1852, a daughter of John and Mary Summers, who were natives of Germany. In their family were three daughters and four sous. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Koerner have been born the following named: John, of Mona township; Frank, who is working in Walnut Grove but resides at home; Ed, William, Louis and Dan, all at home; Maggie, the wife of Louis Ginter, of Pella township; Ann, the wife of John Horn of Mona township; Theressa, the wife of Charles Horn, who is a mail carrier and resides at Cullom; Mary, the wife of John Carney, of Cullom; Lena, at home; and Katie, the wife of Fred Goetz, who is living on her father's farm in Woodford county.
Mr. Koerner is a democrat in his political views and has served as school and road officer, yet is not a politician in the sense of office seeking. He is, however, never remiss in the duties of citizenship but gives loyal support to every measure and movement calculated to prove of public good. He belongs to the Catholic church of Cullom and is a self-made man whose strong purpose and unfaltering diligence have unlocked for him the portals of success.

Extracted 16 Oct 2016 by Norma Hass from History of Ford County, Illinois, From Its Earliest Settlement to 1908, author E. A. Gardner, Volume 2, pages 598-601.

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