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Borough, Joseph

Flourished: Macoupin County, Illinois

Raised in Virginia, Borough migrated west to Madison County, Illinois before the War of 1812. When hostilities commenced, he enlisted as a private in Samuel Whiteside's company mounted riflemen, serving from August 22 to November 13, 1812. In May 1813, he returned to service as a first lieutenant in Whiteside's newly-formed company of rangers. In January 1818, Illinois Territorial Governor Ninian Edwards appointed Borough census taker for Madison County. Later that year, he served as a delegate from Madison County to the Illinois constitutional convention. In 1818, Madison County voters elected Borough to the Illinois House of Representatives. He won re-election in 1820. In 1821, he married Peggy Shephard. In 1827, Borough and his family moved to an area of Greene County, Illinois, that would become part of Macoupin County. Borough became a strong advocate for the creation of Macoupin County, lobbying for it before the General Assembly. In the legislation creating the county in January 1829, Borough received appointment to establish the county seat. Later that same year, Borough held the first county elections in his home, as well as the first session of the county commissioners court. He also platted and surveyed the lots for the newly selected county seat of Carlinville. In 1831, he began purchasing public land in and around Carlinville, eventually amassing 400 acres by 1847. In 1832, Macoupin County voters elected him to the Illinois House. He did not run for re-election in 1834. In 1836, Macoupin County voters sent him as a Democrat to the Illinois Senate. He lost in his bid for reelection in 1840.

Charles A. Walker, ed., History of Macoupin County Illinois (Chicago: S. J. Clarke, 1911), 1:76, 78-79, 80, 127, 420, 421; Frank Stevens, "Illinois in the War of 1812-1814," Transactions of the Illinois State Historical Society 9 (1904), 182, 189; Littleton P. Bradley, Macoupin County, Illinois Original Purchasers of Land (St. Louis, MO, 1985), 16; Richard V. Carpenter, The Constitutional Convention of 1818, Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society 6 (October 1913), 331; The Story of Macoupin County, 1829-1979 (Carlinville: Sesquicentennial Committee, 1979), 11; "The Territorial Records of Illinois," Publications of the Illinois State Historical Library No. 3. (Springfield, IL: Phillips Brothers, 1901), 54; Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, Madison County, 18 February 1821, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; Theodore C. Pease, ed., Illinois Election Returns, 1818-1848, vol. 18 of Collections of the Illinois State Historical Library (Springfield: Illinois State Historical Library, 1923), 189, 198, 258, 285; Illinois Public Domain Land Tract Sales, Macoupin County, 343:51, 107, 160; 351:1, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; "An Act Creating the County of Macoupin," 17 January 1829, Revised Code of Laws, of Illinois (1829), 26-28.