Alternate Spellings - None Found
Links - Hoover, Strawhacker
Contacts - We wish to thank Chris Sigouin and Cindy Lafferty for help in untangling parts of the Ditto family. We also wish to thank Nancy Albritton for help in identifying Williamson Hoover, husand of Lucinda Ditto.
The History of Mercer County 1882 contains a brief biography of John W. Ditto. It states that when near 20 years old he came to Mercer County, Illinois, making the entire trip alone on horseback [from Shelby County, Ohio, about 1834-5]. He rode a thoroughbred horse and led a fine mare. He rode many miles without seeing a living soul, and the great prairies stretched out all around him like a great plain unknown except to the savage and beasts of prey. We are not entirely sure if this is an apocryphal story as his parents Andrew and Margaret Wyland Ditto are found in the 1840 census in Mercer County: Andrew Ditto; 1 male 40-50; 2 males 20-30; 1 male 10-15; 1 male 5-10; 1 male under 5; 1 female 30-40; 1 female 5-10; 2 females under 5. It is of course possible that he made the trip alone and then the family followed. In that time period it was often normal for the men to go exploring first and then go back for, or send for, the family.
Andrew and Margaret Wyland DittoAndrew Ditto was born about 1792 in Pennsylvania, and died 5/19/1854 in Mercer County, Illinois. His wife, Margaret Wyland, was born 9/20/1797 in Pennsylvania and died 9/13/1845 in Mercer County, Illinois. They are both buried in Candor-Pope Creek Cemetery in Mercer County: Andrew Ditto, died May 19, 1854 age 62 years; Ann Margaret Ditto, wife of Andrew Ditto, and daughter of Michael Wineland was born Sept 20, 1797 and died Sept 13, 1845 (from their tombstones.)
Andrew remarried to Mrs. Eliza Stotter on 8/14/1846 but she apparently died before 1850.
Andrew and Margaret Wyland Ditto had children (and possible children): John W. Ditto (6/25/1815, Pickaway Co, Ohio); Francis Ditto (about 1816, Ohio); George Ditto (about 1821, Ohio); Elizabeth Ditto (about 1827, Ohio, probable daughter); Samuel Ditto (about 1828, Ohio); Barbary Ditto (about 1832, Ohio, a possible child); Barbara Ditto (about 1835, Ohio, possible child); Levi H. Ditto (about 1835, Ohio); Andrew Jackson Ditto (about 1838, Ill); Joshua D. Ditto (about 1840, Il); Lewis N. Ditto (about 1840, Ill). We will give what proof we have for each child.
Andrew and family are found in the 1840 census in Mercer County (page 324): 1 male 40-50 (Andrew), 2 males 20-30 (John W. & Francis); 1 male 10-15 (Samuel); 1 male 5-10 (Levi); 1 male 1-5 (Jackson); 1 female 30-40 (Margaret); 1 female 5-10 (probably Elizabeth, possibly Barbary or Barbara); 2 females under 5 (identity unknown). The possible names have been filled in by us.
More on the Ditto Children
Elizabeth Ditto Fox [probable daughter]Probable daughter, Elizabeth Ditto, married Ben Amia Fox on 2/26/1846 in Mercer County. They are found in Township 13North Range 3West in 1850: #160 Benami Fox, 28, farmer, born Virginia; Elizabeth, 23, born Ohio; Edward F. Ditto, 6, born Il; Nancy J. Fox, 3, Il; Andrew J. Fox 11/12, Il.
Elizabeth’s age does not fit with the 1840 census record. Her son Edward also poses a problem, making it possible that she was the widow of a Ditto, and not the daughter of Andrew. They are not found in Mercer County in 1860 and 1870 but were probably not far away as they are found back in Abington Township in 1880: Beng H. Fox, 59, born Va; parents born Va; Elizabeth, 50, born Ohio, parents born Pa; Andrew J. Fox, son, 32, born Il; Susan E. Fox, daughter, 12, born Il.
Barbara Ditto Cotton [Possible Daughter]We do not find marriages that would account for the females under 5 in 1840 and they are not found in the 1850 census. In 1850 we find Barbary Ditto, 18, born Ohio, working for the Thomas Riggs family in T14NR4W. She would fit as the female age 5-10 in the 1840 census. In 1860 we find Barbara E. Ditto, age 25, domestic, born Ohio, with the John W. Ditto family in Keithsburg. It was not unusual for women (and sometimes men) to reduce their age as the decades progressed, so this may be the same person as Barbary in the 1850 census. Barbary E. Ditto married John A. Cotton on 9/11/1860 in Mercer County. Barbary is found in Abingdon Township in 1870: #113 Barbary Cotton, 27, keeping house, born Ohio; Viola Cotton, 9, born Ia; Mary Cotton, 7, born Ia. We do not know if her husband was deceased or had followed other young men to explore the West. Also note Barbary is still getting younger - her actual age was probably 37.
Francis, George, Levi, and Lewis DittoBy 1850 some of the sons had married and had farms of their own. We find Andrew living with son Francis in Township 13North Range 4West: #122 Francis Ditto, 34, farmer, farm value $1000, born Ohio; Mary, 24, born Ohio; Joshua, 3, born Il; Lucinda, 1, born Il; Edwin Wells, 14, Il; George Ditto, 29, farmer, born Ohio; Andrew Ditto, 55, born Pa; Levi Ditto, 15, born Oh; Lewis Ditto, 10, born Il. Francis Ditto married Mary Wells on 11/13/1845 in Mercer County, so the young Edwin Wells with them is probably her brother. From this census record we learn the names of other sons of Andrew Ditto: George, Levi, and Lewis. George apparently followed the family to Mercer County sometime after 1840. Given his age he may have been married and lost a wife before coming to Mercer County.
Samuel and Margaret Seaton DittoNext to Francis and family we find son Samuel Ditto in 1850: #123 Samuel Ditto, 22, farmer, born Oh; Margaret, 23, born Scotland; Elizabeth Seaton, 21, born Il. Samuel Ditto married Margaret Seaton on 3/20/1850 in Mercer County, so Elizabeth is her sister.
John W. and Andrew Jackson DittoNext to Samuel Ditto we find Andrew’s son John W. Ditto:#124 John W. Ditto, 35, farmer, farm valued $1500, born Ohio; Elizabeth, 34, born Ohio; Henry R., 21, born Il; James W., 5, born Il; John W., 1/12, Il; Thomas David, 42, born Oh; Jackson Ditto, 12, Il. John W. Ditto married Elizabeth Redman 11/17/1842 in Knox County, Illinois. She was daughter of Henry and Margaret Redman. Henry R. Ditto, 21, is an error as he was actually age 1 (see 1860 census below). Here we also see John W. Ditto’s brother, Andrew Jackson Ditto. We will write a separate section below about the John W. Ditto family as there is much more information about them in the History of Mercer County, 1882; information that is of historical interest about life in the County in the early days and also makes his connection to New Boston.
More on the John W. Ditto familyAbove we have followed the arrival of John W. Ditto in Mercer County about 1834 or 1835 and his marriage to Elizabeth Redman on 11/17/1842 in Knox County (adjoins Mercer County.)
The History of Mercer County 1882 continues that when Mr. Ditto [John W.] reached Mercer County he settled in New Boston township, on government land. He settled on the SE/4 of Section 27, having previously made the claim in March of 1836. He was the only house out on the prairie except Joseph Denison’s on the SW ¼ Sec 34 built the same spring (see New Boston Township plat map for locations.) He then settled in Abington township, in the spring of 1838 on the farm where he now lives  . Mr. Ditto carried the mail two winters from Monmouth to New Boston and Rock Island. He told a story of the first marriage of white people in Abington township was that of a couple on their way from Indiana to Iowa. The bride was a widowed daughter of a man who was moving with his family to the young hawkeye state; and the groom was a teamster of the father of the bride. The party halted for a few days in the timber that fringes Pope Creek, and the lovers stood on the ice, while a justice of the peace, whose name is forgotten, legalized the contract, and for once, at least, there was love “on ice.”
The History continues: They [John and Elizabeth] had ten children: Mary D., James W., Henry R. John W., Ellen A., Andrew M., Benjamin F., Samuel D., Margaret E. and Mack. Mary D., the first born, was burned to death when she was three months old. The mother tied the child in a high chair, and while she was busy outside the room, the child slipped out of the chair into the fire and was burned to death. James D., the second child, was killed in the battle of Vicksburg, Mississippi, May 23, 1863. His name is enshrined on the Soldier’s Monument at Aledo with Company G, Thirtieth Regiment of Illinois Infantry.
In 1882 Mr. Ditto had a farm of 479 acres in Abington township and also owned 847 acres of pasture land in Henderson County. He paid a great deal of attention to sheep husbandry, and has at present almost a thousand head of sheep. He belonged to the Advent or Sabbatarian church. “He formerly mustered with the democrats, but for several years past he has been an unflinching green backer.”
The 1850 census record is included above verifying James W. and John W. as children. In 1860 we find the family in Keithsburg: #677 John W. Ditto, 45, farmer, born Ohio; Elizabeth, 37, born Oh; James, 15, born Il; Henry, 12, Il; John, 10, Il; Ellen A., 6, Il; Andrew M., 4, Il; [Benjamin] Francis, 2, Il; Stephen [actually Samuel] A. D. 1/12, Il; Barbara E. Ditto, 25, domestic, Ohio. This is the only evidence we have that Barbara may have been a daughter of Andrew and Margaret Ditto. In 1870 we find them in Abington Township, with Barbary Ditto Cotton just two doors away: #111 John W. Ditto, 55, farmer, born Ohio; Elizabeth, 47, Oh; Henry R., 22, assisting on farm, Il; Ellen A., 17, Il; Andrew M., 14, Il; Benj. F., 12, born Mo [error]; Samuel D., 9, Il; Margaret E., 7, Il; M.C./McClelland, 5, Il. McClelland is the child given as Mack in the History, thus completing the family as given in the History.
Elizabeth died March 9, 1873, age 49 yrs 3 mo 26 dys and is buried in Candor-Pope Creek cemetery. John married on 11/11/1873 to Olive Crook, widow of Galen Crook. They are found in Abington Township in 1880: John W. Ditto, 64, farmer, born Oh; Olive Ditto, 42, born Oh; Margarate E. Ditto, daughter, 18, Il; McCleland Ditto, son, 15, Il; Kate I. Crook, stepdaughter, 12, Il; Roxy Crook, stepdaughter, 10, Il. [In 1870 Olive was listed with husband Galen Crook and children Jacob L., Kate, and Roxy.]
John W. Ditto died November 28, 1885 and is buried next to Elizabeth in Candor-Pope Creek Cemetery.
The Mercer County History tells us that John’s daughter, Ellen A. Ditto was married to John H. Farber, and died July 11, 1878, in Cheyenne, Wyoming Territory, leaving two children: John W. and Arthur Farber. Her marriage is found in Mercer County: Ella A. Ditto m. John H. Farber 2/12/1873. We have nothing further on the other children.
More on the Francis Ditto FamilyWe have given Francis Ditto’s 1850 census record above as his father, Andrew, was living with him in 1850. In 1860 we find the family in Keithsburg: #595 Francis Ditto, 35, farmer, born Ohio; Mary [Wells], 35, Oh; Joanna, 13, Il [we believe this is an error for Joshua - see 1850]; Lucinda, 11, Il; Benjamin, 8, Il; [Agness] Catharine, 6, Il; Frank, 2, Il. Francis and Mary had another child, Cordelia A. Ditto, who died 9/27/1862, age 1 yr, 11m, 8 dys and is buried in Candor-Pope Creek Cemetery. Their daughter Agness Catherine died 9/22/1864, age 11 yr, 5m, 17 dys and is buried next to her sister in Candor-Pope Creek Cemetery.
In 1870 Francis and Mary are still in Abington Township: #128 Francis Ditto, 50, farmer, born Oh; Mary, 45, Oh; Benjamin, 18, assisting on farm, Il; Francis, 12, Il; Angeline, 5, Il; Andrew, 2, Il; Joseph, 9, Il. Joseph Ditto was son of Francis’s brother Levi whose wife died before 1870. We do not find son Joshua in 1870 and do not know what happened to him. He may have served in the Civil War; he may have “gone west.”
Daughter Lucinda married Williamson Hoover on 9/25/1866 in Mercer County. They are found two doors from Francis and Mary in 1870: #126 Williamson Hoover, 35, farm laborer, born In; Lucinda, 22, Il; Mary G., 2, Il; Francis, 1, Il. During the next decade they went to Iowa and to Kansas and then returned to Abington Township according to their 1880 census record: William Hoover, 42, farmer, born In, parents born Il; Lizabeth [actually Lucinda], 32, born Il, parents born Ohio; Mary, daughter, 13, Il; Marion [Francis], son, 11, Il; Elmer, son, 9, Ia; Elizabeth, daughter, 6, Ks; Robert, 4, Il; Winnie, daughter, 6 mo, Il. Williamson Hoover served in Company B, 65th Infantry during the Civil War but his name is reversed as Hoover Williamson in the Adjutant General’s Report. We will be putting up a Hoover page.
Francis Ditto was apparently missed in the 1880 census. We checked all of Abington Township and did not find him. Nor did we find him in the National Index. Mary Wells Hoover, born October 23, 1835, died July 18, 1878, and is buried in Candor-Pope Creek Cemetery next to her two daughters. It is possible that Francis left after her death, but we do not find their children who would have still been at home in the census index either. Francis Ditto, born October 22, 1822, died December 13, 1899 and is buried next to his wife and two daughters in the Candor-Pope Creek Cemetery.
MUCH MORE TO COME
Tombstone Readings by the DAR in the 1960's and published in "Mercer County Cemetery Records"
Candor-Pope Creek CemeteryVolume 4
Lewis E. Ditto 1869-1924 E. wife of Lewis E Ditto1872-1955
Dr R. C. Ditto 1873-1940
Geraldine M, daughter, 1902-1937
Justine, son Feb 9 1907-Feb 12, 1908 (from my notes it isn't clear whether this son and daughter go with R. C. or Lewis E.)
Francis Ditto Sr 10/22/1822-Dec 13, 1899 Mary Oct 23, 1825-July 18, 1878
Agness C, daughter F & M Ditto died 9/22/1864 age 11 yr 5 mo 17 dy
Cordelia A., daughter F&M Ditto died 9/27/1862 age 1 yr 11 mo 8 days
William L., son G. W. & E, died Aug 16, 1863, age 3 mo
Roy A., son of G. L. & J. Ditto died Nov 28, 1885, age 3 yr 14 dys
Jennie Ditto 1860-1934 George L. Ditto 1857-1937
John W. Ditto born June 29, 1815 died November 28, 1885
Elizabeth, wife of J. W. Ditto died March 9, 1873 age 49 yr 3 mo 26 dy
Cortis Gideon Ditto Apr 3 1867-Apr 7, 1954
Effie Park Ditto Dec 28, 1869-August 26, 1949
Floyd Leroy, son C G & Effie Ditto 9/30/1900-July 17, 1903
Grace Violet, daughter of C G & Effie Ditto July 6, 1904 - ______
Lewis N. Ditto 9/17/1840-9/20.1918 Elizabeth S. Ditto 8/7/1845-3/15/1923
Emily V daughter LN & EV Ditto Aug 22, 1871-Dec 6, 1955
Kathryn M, daughter LN & EV Ditto Feb 9, 18__
Andrew Ditto, died May 19, 1854 age 62 yrs
Ann Margaret Ditto, wife of Andrew Ditto, and daughter of Michael Wineland, was born Sept 20, 1797 and died Sept 13, 1845
Florence Ditto Moore 1897-19__ William H. Moore 1889-19__
Anna Dunn Ditto 1875-1897 Robert A. Ditto 1861-1907
Lillian Ditto Greer 1896-1960 G, Scitt Greer 1893-19__
Elender B., daughter F&M Ditto died 9/2/1857 age 1 yr 6 mo 27 dy
Cordelia A., daughter F&M Ditto died 9/27/1862 age 1 yr 11 mo 8 dy
Greenmound CemeteryPage 87
Guy E. Ditto Sept 10, 1890-Dec 15, 1956
C. Thomas Ditto Aug 8, 1853 9/18/1935
Anna Ditto 9/27/1856-1/15/1931
Florence daughter G W & E Ditto died 9/4/1876 age 14 dy
Mattie daughter G W & E Ditto died 9/16/1878 age 2 weeks 4 dy
G. W. Ditto died May 11, 1897 age 77 yr 1 mo 12 dy
Elizabeth, wife of G. W. died July 13, 1834 died 9/10/1899
Headstone marked "grandmother" no dates
Maude Bell daughter of G. T. & A Ditto, died August 18, 1877 age 11 mo 22 dy
St. Mary's of Keith burgPage 118
Charles H. Ditto 1864-1935 Tamma F. Ditto 1867-1957
George T. Ditto 9/19/1906-2/22/1953
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