Thomas J. Liddle, one of the most prominent farmers of Ford county, was born in Knox county, Illinois, March 9, 1859, his parents being James and Elizabeth (Brown) Liddle, who were natives of England and came to America in 1858. The father was born in Northumberland county, England, and was a ship carpenter by trade. He traveled extensively, having worked in all of the large ship-building yards of England, and when he determined to come to America he crossed the continent from New York until the interior of the country was reached, settling in Knox county, Illinois, where he rented land and thus engaged in farming. For about fourteen years he continued in that county and in 1872 removed to Livingston county, where he purchased a farm upon which he made his home until 1881. In that year he became a resident of Ford county, purchasing three hundred and twenty acres of land, upon which but slight improvements had been made. In his farm work he was always progressive and energetic and was the first man in the county to do any tiling but foresaw the possibilities in this direction and by his progressive efforts converted uncultivable land into a tract of rich fertility. The farm for which he paid thirty dollars per acre is today worth two hundred dollars per acre, owing in great measure to the labor and improvements which he placed upon it. He reached a ripe old age, passing away August 5, 1905, in his eighty-seventh year. His widow still survives and resides at Cropsey. In their family were four children: Susanna M.; Margaret E., the widow of James Hill, of Francisville, Indiana; T. J., of this review; and William R., a resident of Ford county.
Thomas J. Liddle was educated in the district schools of Livingston and Knox counties and from early boyhood assisted in the work of the home farm, becoming familiar with all the duties and labors that fall to the lot of the agriculturist. At the age of twenty-one years he began working on his own account but continued to make his home with his father and attended to the business of the farm. His early practical experience well qualified him for the work which he undertook after he had reached adult age and as the years have passed his experience and sound judgment have been manifest in the excellent results which have followed his perseverance and well directed labor.
On the 8th of February, 1905, Mr. Liddle was married to Mrs. Marie Luther, nee Walker, of Fairfield, Iowa, an accomplished young woman of rare attainments, who has filled many positions of honor in the lodges and Methodist Episcopal church of that place, a faithful and successful worker in all social and charitable undertakings of her community. Mrs. Liddle is a daughter of Jonathan and Anne (Molden) Walker, who were natives of Newcastle, England. Emigrating to America in 1850, they settled in Fairfield, Iowa, where they procured land at once and prospered as industrious and energetic farmers. Mr. Walker is now living retired at the age of eighty-nine years, and has lived to see his children well settled in life, all residing near the old home place. Mrs. Walker was educated in the Duchess school of Alnwick, England, and was a woman of unusual energy and of high intellectual ability. She passed away June 28, 1901. Both were active members and stanch supporters of the Methodist Episcopal church and the cause of temperance. Mr. Walker has always been a prominent republican and was a gifted public speaker. Their good work and prayers will live for years and years in the hearts of many. In their family were nine children, namely: Mary, the wife of E. R. Best, of Jefferson county, Iowa; Michael, who is deceased, his widow and three children residing in lowa; William, who has also passed away; Elizabeth, the wife of B. N. DeGood; Mrs. Liddle; Susan, the wife of James Campbell; Thomas L.; Byron; and David.
Mrs. Liddle owns property at Guthrie, Oklahoma, where she was postmistress several years, and she also has property at Piney Ridge, Michigan. Mr. and Mrs. Liddle have one son, Thomas J., who was born September 27, 1906, and completes the happiness of their pleasant home.
Fraternally Mr. Liddle is a member of Burr Oaks Lodge, No. 621, K. P., and has filled every chair in the order, also representing his lodge in the Grand Lodge of the state for the past five years. His wife is a member of the Rebekah lodge. In politics he is a republican and has served in several local offices, being elected township assessor in the fall of 1907. A social, genial manner, kindly spirit and deference for the opinions of others have made him popular and he is practically prominent in the Knights of Pythias order, being most loyal to the teachings of the society. His entire life has been passed in Illinois and most of it in this section of the state, and he stands as a splendid representative of the progressive agricultural element in our citizenship.

Extracted 17 Oct 2016 by Norma Hass from History of Ford County, Illinois, From Its Earliest Settlement to 1908, author E. A. Gardner, Volume 2, pages 840-842.

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