|Early Photo of Uncle Levi W. & Gpa William Perry
|.....Two VERY Interseting Brothers!
WHAT A PAIR!
Abolitionists ~ Republican Delegates ~ Friends of Abe Lincoln ~ Farmers ~ Coal Miner ~ Teacher ~ Preacher ~ News Paper
Owner-Editor ~ Secretary to President.....
William Perry Myers & Levi Willits Myers:
These two brothers left their mark all over history! Some of their claims to fame include polititions,
writters, coal miner, teacher, preacher and friends of Abe Lincoln. There used to be a "Lincoln Letter", that Abe Lincoln wrote to the brothers during the early days of their
Political run, as they helped form the Republican Party. I believe I saw it when I was a little girl -
I remember my Aunt Irene showing me a very tattered and torn letter and telling me That Abe Lincoln had wrote it. Another
family member is sure Irene lost it while moving in the bay. What ever become of it I have no idea for sure but it would
be really nice to find it again someday.
We know for sure that Grandpa William Perry took after his dad,
(Col Andrew Myers) and joined the Military. His enlistment can be found at (New Boston militia rolls in 1862). Col Andrew Myers, along with William Nevius as Lieutenant Colonel and Benijah Lloyd
as Major formed a malitia in the 1840's under orders of the Illinois Governer, to protect the settlers against the Indians.
This was the only organization of this kind formed in the County until the Civil War. They met for drill at Millersburg and
parade days brought hundreds from around the County to watch. "The companies were well drilled, fully officered, fairly uniformed
and armed with such guns as pioneers had for hunting and common protection." (Ref: Historicaly Encyclopedia of
Illinois & History of Mercer County, 1903)
|WILLIAM PERRY MYERS
|Picture of Original News paper Clipping
ONE OF THE PARTY'S FOUNDERS TO ATTEND CHICAGO CONVENTION
(Copied word for word from News paper Article)
WILLIAM P. MYERS, one of the five living delegates to
the first national convention of the Republican party in Philidelphia in 1856, will watch from a conspicuous place the choosing
of the party's canadate in Chicago next June. Mr. Myers is said to be a man of uncommon intellectual vigor, as keen and alert
at 87 as he was a quarter of a century ago, and his natural powers have suffered so little impairment through age that he
still reads without spectacles.
Practically all of his long life has been passed in New Boston, ILL.,
in Mercer County, and he was one of the first residents of the state to recognize that the Republican party must committ itself
definitely to the policy of abolition.
He announced, when there was peril in his candor, that the logic
of events left the new party no choice and he threw his influence steadily against the compromising tendencies with which
charactorized the first years of it's own existance.
Chairman New has sent the old man a special invitation to be present
at the coming Chicago gathering of the party and he is looking forward with pleasure to the prospect of renewing the expirience
of his young manhood.
* * * * *
Mr. Myers (xxx unreadable xxx) stock which has been singularly
successful in resisting the great destroyer. He is one of nine children born to Colonel Andrew Myers, who went to Mercer County
in 1886. Of the nine children six are living and their aggregate age is something like 500 years.
Colonel Myers was a man of strong Puritanical views, a prohibitionist
and one who dicerned the injustice of slavery long before it became a national issue. His sons inherited something of his
viewpoint and all of his incorruptible independence and at least two of them - William P. and Levi W. Myers -
were amoung the leaders of the Republican party from it's formation. Indeed, it is the boast of both that they were Republicans
when Lincoln was a Whig.
Levi W. Myers, who later became a war correspondent for the old Associated
Press, was a delegate to the state Republican convention in Bloomington early in June, 1856. At that time both
he and his brother were abolitionists, and Levi Myers made a strong stand in the convention for some declaration
* * * * *
It was he who suggested his brother as a possible delegate to the
national convention from that part of the state, and the members were glad to quit of the responsibility. When William Myers
left for the East it was as an instructed delegate, but he cast his vote for General Firemont - "The Pathfinder."
Levi Myers, who now is a resident of Portland, passed through Chicago
yesterday in a visit to his brother in New Boston. He himself is 77 years of age and, although he suffered painful injuries
some ten years ago in a railroad accident, is mentally as forceful as he ever has been.
His memory of the early struggles which attended the birth of the
party is unclouded, and he talked with charming freedom and fullness of the influences which played upon the men who were
shaping public opinion in the days that immediately preceded the war.
In physical aspect Mr. Myer's suggests
a title the circuit riding preacher of the pioneer days. He is tall and lean and a little bent,
but he walks firmly, and there is nothing of the infirmity of age in his sharp, neat, clean enunciation.
* * * * *
"It would be difficult for a man living in this day to understand
the opprobrium which attached to being a Republican in these first formative years." he said yesterday. "Enough emphasis has
not been placed, I think, by historians generally upon the moral courage which was implies in 1856 by adherence to Republican
politics, ill-defined as they then were. It is not too much to say that a Republican was esteemed but little better than a
horse thief in some parts of the state."
"So much praise has been bestowed upon these men who emerged later
as leaders that many of the men who worked in the background have been forgotten. I would say that not one man in two hundred
in Illinois was a Republican at the time of the first convention party."
"I remember as if it were yesterday that state convention at Bloominton.
One of the figures which stands out in my memory most sharply was that of 'Long John' Wentworth of Chicago. Physically he
was a giant, and he threw the great weight of his personal influence on the side of abolition. He was a tower of strength
in the early courells of the party."
* * * * *
"Well as I have said, it was a mighty unpopular thing in those days,
particularly in my part of the state, for a man to announce openly his adherence to the new party. There were still those
who believed that the old Whig party might be resuscitated and they opposed the idea of injecting new elements. Lincoln,
I may say was of that way of thinking. No one particularly wanted to go as a delegate to the national convention, and I suggested
that my brother would be willing to offer himself his name was gladly accepted."
I think have not done justice to these early Illinois settlers who sturdily refused to compromise. As late as 1863 my
brother was openly threatened by the people of his county because of his known sympathy for abolition. In season and out he
insisted that a great national crime was being condoned through weakness and that the time for compromising with a vicious
trafficking in human life had gone by."
"He even was visited by vigilance committees who warned him that
unless he desisted they would hang him from his own apple tree.
The Knights of the Golden Circle, who were really secessionists, were then very strong in Southern Illinois."
William Myers received his invitation to be present at the Chicago
convention through his son, Myron Myers, who is Vice President of the Cable-Nelson Piano Comapnay and a resident
of Hinsdale. Mr Myers said that his father was delighted at the prospect of witnessing another nomination by the party which
he helped found in Philadlphia fifty-two years ago.
Illinois Delegation to the
1856 Republican National Convention
INFO FOUND @ http://politicalgraveyard.com/parties/R/1856/IL.html
Delegates (may be incomplete!)
Cyrus Aldrich, Dixon - Edward R. Allen, Aurora - William B. Archer, Marshall - John D. Arnold, Peoria - M. G. Atwood, Alton - George T. Brown, Alton - F. A. Carpenter, Belleville - S. M. Church, Rockport - Francis Grimm, Belleville - Henry Grove, Peoria - Abner C. Harding, Monmouth - Miles S. Henry, Sterling - H. C. Johns, Decatur - Norman Buel Judd, Chicago - H. Krisman, Chicago - W. A. Little, Elizabeth - Owen Lovejoy, Princeton - A. W. Mack, Kankakee - Leander Muncell, Paris - W. P. Myers, New Boston - Jesse O. Norton, Joliet - John M. Palmer, Carlinville - Samuel C. Parks, Lincoln - T. J. Picket, Peoria - William Ross, Pittsfield - George Schneider, Chicago - M. P. Sweet, Freeport - J. B. Tenny, Atlanta - John Tillson, Quincy - George W. Wait, St. Charles - W. H. L. Wallace, Ottawa - David Welty, Dixon - Isaac Whittaker, Carlinville - W. G. Wilcox, Fredericksville
|News paper Owner - Editor
|Uncle Levi W. Myers
The first newspaper published in the county was the "New Boston Advertiser," which was followed successively
by the "Yeoman of the Prairie Land," the "New Boston Broadhorn," the "Golden Age" and the "New Boston Nonpareil." The last
mentioned paper was published by Levi W. Myers, an old-time settler who came to
the county with his parents in 1836.
Under Mr. Myers' editorial management "The Nonpareil" was recognized
by its contemporaries as one of the leading journals of the early days in Western Illinois. He was a fighter for right, and
his editorials teemed with advanced thought on all moral and public issues. He was equipped to meet great opposition in a
political contest, and was a trueand fearless friend of the oppressed in all stations of life. Mr.
Myers is now a resident of Portland, Oregon.
History of Henderson and Mercer Counties © Wini Caudell and Contributors All Rights Reserved, Illinois Ancestors
LEVI MYERS NEWSPAPER OWNER - EDITOR
of THE WAPELLO REPUBLIC
(History found @ http://www.rootsweb.com/~ialouisa/newspapers.html)
A history of Louisa County, Iowa,
A term paper by J. Ann Cotter, 1964 Graduate State University of
Printed with permission of J. Ann Cotter Schrader, Greeley, Colorado
Updated by Connie Street
(The Louisa County Historical Society has a photo of the Office of the Wapello
Republican Newspaper which I would LOVE to get a copy of. It pictures several men in the Newspaper Office located
on second floor of Keck Building. Date unknown. There is a man in the photo with the white beard, that bears
a strong resemblance to and very well could be Uncle Levi)
THE BIRTH OF THE WAPELLO REPUBLIC
Sources seem contradictory making it unsure if the Louisa County Times was originally established by J.
H. Wells or L. P. Wells. Records state that L.P. Wells ran the paper for about two years as an independent
Newspaper. Next the Newspaper was co-owned by: Kelly, Ives, and Minton until which time Mr. L.P. Wells bought it back
and continued publication for another two years. William Keach then bought him out and published the paper under the name
of Wapello Republican. Later the Newspaper was sold to a man named Dr. B. E. Jones who discontinued
L. W. Myers, a Whig and Republican, (from New Boston, Illinois) purchased the
press and the office and restarted publication of The Wapello Republican in 1866.
The History of Louisa County states, "The Wapello Republican took its rank among the ablest papers in the state.
It was a neatly printed and well-conducted sheet. Its local column showed evidence of considerable care in the collection
of local items of interest, while its editorial columns were proof of the ability of the editor, who was thoroughly
conversant in the political history of the country. Soon after taking possession of the office, Mr.
Levi W. Myers added largely to its stock of type and put in a job press. From time to time new material
was added so that the office was one of the best in this section of the country."
ADDITIONAL HISTORY OF THIS NEWSPAPER
William J. Peterson wrote in 1962, "The Wapello Republican today is the successor and consolidation of every
newspaper ever printed in Wapello since 1859, the date of its establishment. It is the oldest weekly in the state of Iowa,
and is one of 33 papers in the state established before the Civil War and still circulating."
The first edition of this Newspaper was published by J. M. Edwards. Since the beginning it has been
the county's leading Newspaper. Soon after the Republican was established, the Intelligencer
died. The Republican, which was formerly known as the Burris City Commercial,
moved to Wapello in 1857. Other information states the Burris City Commercial and the Wapello Intelligencer
were consolidated under the name of the Republican with L. P. Wells in control until 1862. When
Jenkins and Barr came back into the journalism field at this time Barr bought out Jenkins and published the Newspaper until
June, 1865. Serving as editor was a man named John Hale, who had been the county clerk for several years. Under Hale's
guidance, the Republican became the most "Radical, redhot Republican newspaper ever published in the state"
with some 200 copies being mailed to members of the Union army. Hale paid the postage for mailing these
papers out of his pocket.
Then due to illness Barr sold out to a Dr. B. E. Jones. Jones was the county physician and judge of Grandview.
Shortly after this purchase Jones also became ill and leased the plant to Levi
W. Myers of New Boston, Illinois. Just before Jones' death, Myers
bought the plant and made great improvements to the Newspaper. It became one of the best Newspapers in
the state. Levi W. Myers continued to publish the Republican until
he was appointed vice-counsil to Victoria, B.C., by President Harrison in 1892. Myers then
sold the newspaper and moved to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.
Ownership after that point in time went under the guidance of J. B. Wilson, a well-known and successful Wapello
attorney, who ran the plant for two years before selling out to Charles M. Wright.
Then in 1884, the Record, which was established in 1870, and the Republican, established
in 1859, consolidated under the new name the Record-Republican. The editors wrote in 1895: "For more
than seven years our best efforts have given to the newspaper work, having taken it up from a collapsed and ruined condition
without a single subscriber or a cent of advertising patronage and built the paper up until it is by far the best, most influential
and most widely circulated paper in the county."
With this proclamation, Wright then sold out to R. G. Hawkins. At the time Hawkins was publishing
a Newspaper called the Morning Sun Times. Between the years of 1850
and 1912, Wapello had possessed nine different Newspapers. Three of those papers were in circulation simultaneously
on three different occasions. One of the Newspapers was the Rustler by Jay Hale. Except for
the Tribune, J. D. Barr had been connected with every single Newspaper that identified itself politically
as Republican, that were published in Wapello between 1850 and 1896.
September 17,1896 marked the date of the first publication of the Wapello Republican under the supervision
of Mr. Hawkins. In 1921, he formed a partnership with his son. On November 22, 1923, the Republican headlines
read, "REPUBLICAN AND TRIBUNE MERGED - CONSOLIDATION IS FOR BEST INTEREST OF ALL." In 1937, Hawkins
leased the paper to his son, Blaine, who upon the death of his father, purchased all stock from his sisters and became sole
owner in 1941.
The Republican remained in the Hawkins family for 51 years until Blaine sold out, in 1947, to
Kenneth C. Wells, a Republican, who published it for only a few months.
Mark Green then became editor and publisher and made many improvements in the printing plant and newspaper. Green was publisher
until February1, 1954, when he sold out to the Louisa Publishing Company. Becomeing the newest owners were James
L. Hodges and H. Frank Lunsford. They remained partners until October, 1959, when Hodges bought Lunsford's interest. (Louisa
Publishing Co., owned by Mike Hodges, son of the late James Hodges, as of 1964 continued to publish the Wapello Republican.
cs ~ I'll have to continue my research to see if it is still in circulation today jp)
FIRST SETTLERS ( http://www.illinoisancestors.org/mercer/firstsettlers.htm )
Mr. Levi W. Myers, now a resident of Portland, Oregon,
in a letter to the writer, furnishes many interesting incidents connected with the early settlement of the county. Mr. Myers came to Mercer county in October, 1836, with his father, Colonel
Andrew Myers. The family consisted of the father, mother, two sons and seven daughters. At this date there
are seven still surviving, the youngest being sixty-five years old and the oldest nearly eighty-four. Colonel
Myers opened a farm in 1839 on the north side of Edwards river, in New Boston township, midway between New
Boston and Millersburg, which he improved and owned until his death in 1881. He was commissioned by the Governor early
in the '40s to organize a regiment of militia in the county, which he successfully accomplished, with • William I. Nevi
us as lieutenant-colonel and Benijah Lloyd as major, the only organization of the kind the county ever had. The place of meeting
for drill was Millersburg, and parade days brought hundreds of people to the seat of justice from all over the county. There
were those who did not take kindly to the movement, and some witticisms were indulged in at uniforms and accoutrements,
but on the whole it was a creditable organization and kept alive the military spirit that was soon to find expression
in the Mexican war, the troubles about Nauvoo and the Southern rebellion. Most of the companies were well drilled, fully officered,
fairly uniformed and armed with such guns as the pioneers had for hunting and common protection. Colonel
Myers stood six feet without shoes, was spare, erect and athletic in person and as full of martial spirit
as General Jackson himself. About 1847 the Bragg artillery company was formed at New Boston and Colonel
Myers was made its captain. These were the only military organizations the county had until the opening of
the Civil War.
APPOINTED TO OFFICE: Levi W. Myers continued to publish the Republican until he was
appointed vice-counsil to Victoria, B.C., by President Harrison in 1892. Myers then sold the newspaper and moved to Victoria,
GRANDSON PARKE BEANE MYERS
BORN IN CANADA
Parke was the youngest of three sons
born to Alice K. (Beane) and Oak Prentiss Myers. He was the grandson of Elizabeth (Kendig) & Van Buren Beane and Rosetta
(Prentiss) & Levi Willits Myers.
When Levi Myers was appointed
Vice Council to Victoria, British Columbia he moved his entire family, including his wife, his only son Oak, and Oak’s
wife and two small sons, Myron Kendig Myers age 2 and Troy Oak Myers age 1, to live with him in Canada during his time in
office. The extended family arrived in Canada in early 1890. Parke was born in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada on Nov 30,
1890. The family spent five years in Canada before returning to the states.
In 1895, when Parke was five years
old, he made his first journey to the United States with his family as they returned to their former lives in Portland, Oregon.
On June 3, 1913 Parke married Edna
Bridwell daughter of Bae L. (Wilson) and William E. Bridwell. Parke and Edna spent their married years together in Portland,
Oregon. As far as I can tell no children were born to this couple. Parke and both his brother’s occupation are
listed as a Bank Clerk or Bank Teller in all the census records.
Park died in 1947 at the age of 56.
He was laid to rest in Lincoln Memorial Park in the Camella Corridor, Mausoleum along with his
wife Edna and her parents.
PUBLISHED IN THE Oregonian
News Paper – July 15, 1915
Levi W. Myers is 85
Former Editor and ex-Consul to Observe Anniversary.
Mind Vigorous as of Yore
War Correspondent of 1861 Will Be Guest at Family Gathering Today
Opinions on Past and Present Are Given Freely
Vigorous in mind, and little less so in body, than he was in 1853, when he began
newspaper life as an editor; in Illinois, or in 1861 to 1865 as a war correspondent, or in 1890 to 1895, when he was United
States Consul at Victoria, B. C..
Levi W. Myers, of Portland, today celebrates his eighty-fifth birthday anniversary.
He will be the honor guest at a family gathering at the home of his son, Oak P,
Myers, 681 East Ankeny Street.
"While passing his later years in Portland in retirement, so far as business is
concerned, his mind scorns inaction.
With his force as a public speaker many Portland audiences are acquainted.
Mr. Myers has positive views on public questions, and he has always exercised
the right to express them.
“I have observed several instances where business men who were free spoken
were warned to keep still, or their business would suffer.” he said.
"But they did not .lose business. They prospered.
Let no man fear to express, his honest opinions.
One of the glories of my life is that so many of the reforms I advocated in early
years have been partly or completely triumphant.”
Abolition Teachings Adopted Early
Born on a
farm in Wayne County, Indiana, July 15, 1830, the son of Colonel Andrew Myers, he was taken
by the family migration to Mercer County, Illinois, six years later, and there grew to manhood, attending Knox College at
Galesburg: for two years.
He early adopted abolition teachings and in 1853 took editorial charge of the
Golden Age at New Boston, Illinois, a town on the Mississippi River surveyed and platted by Abraham Lincoln.
While conducting this paper he was threatened with hanging because of his anti
In 1856 Mr. Myers was the only delegate from Mercer County to the historic
Bloomington convention, preceding the nomination of Fremont for President, in which the great figures were:
O. H. Browning
Consulship at Victoria Held
In 1861 he went to St. Louis and began work as a reporter on the Democrat, and
among other assignments re ported the return of General Fremont when the latter was relieved from command in Southwest Missouri.
He was the only newspaper man present
at the battle of Fredericktown, Missouri, on October 31, 1861.
Next he went to Cairo, Illinois, for the St. Louis Dispatch.
Returning to St, Louis because of his health Mr. Myers acted as financial and
commercial editor of the Dispatch until the close of the war.
Then he went to Wapello, Iowa, to edit a newspaper of his own.
He was there 24 years. He was made Consul at Victoria, B. C, and sold out his Iowa
Returning East from Victoria in 1895 Mr. Myers was badly injured in a railroad
In 1898 he came to Portland, residing with his only son, Oak P. Myers.
His wife died nine years ago, after a married life of 52 years.