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Herndon, Archer G.

Born: 1795-02-13 Culpeper County, Virginia

Died: 1867-01-03 Springfield, Illinois

In 1816, Herndon married Rebecca Johnson. Their first child, William Herndon, was born in Kentucky. They moved to Troy, Illinois, where another child, Elliot Herndon, was born. In 1821, Herndon moved to Sangamon County, Illinois, and settled five miles northeast of Springfield. From 1825 to 1836, Herndon was in the mercantile trade in Springfield, in which he was quite successful. He also opened the first regular tavern in Springfield. A lifelong Democrat, he was elected as a member of the House of Representatives of the Illinois General Assembly in 1834, and served for two years. When Edmond D. Taylor resigned his seat in the Illinois Senate, voters in August 1836 elected Herndon to replace Taylor, and they reelected him in 1838 and 1840. In 1837, he played an active role in the removal of the capital from Vandalia to Springfield, as a member of the "Long Nine" group of legislators from Sangamon County. In 1842, the president appointed him as Receiver of Public Moneys in the Land Office at Springfield, where he served until 1849. In 1850, he owned real estate valued at $8,000. The Old Settlers' Society of Sangamon County was founded in 1859, and members elected Herndon as vice-president. In 1860, Herndon was a U.S. Land Receiver, with real estate worth $45,000 and personal property worth $15,000.

Bruce Alexander Campbell, The Sangamon Saga: 200 Years: An Illustrated Bicentennial History of Sangamon County (Springfield, IL: Phillips Brothers, 1976), 87-88; History of Sangamon County, Illinois (Chicago: Inter-State, 1881), 519-20; John Carroll Power and S. A. Power, History of the Early Settlers of Sangamon County, Illinois (Springfield, IL: Edwin A. Wilson, 1876), 372-73; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Sangamon County, IL, 93; U.S. Census Office, Eighth Census of the United States (1860), Sangamon County, IL, 219; Sangamo Journal (Springfield, IL), 8 August 1835, 3:1; Illinois Daily State Journal (Springfield), 4 January 1867, 4:3.