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Kinney, Simon

Born: 1784-08-26 Pennsylvania

Died: 1859-09-11 Tiskilwa, Illinois

Flourished: Tiskilwa, Illinois

Kinney was the first attorney in what would become Bureau County, Illinois. He spent his early years on the family farm in Sheshequin, Bradford County, Pennsylvania, helping clear the land, receiving in the meantime a rudimentary education. Upon reaching adulthood, he married Phoebe Cash and took up reading law. In 1814, he earned admission to the Bradford County bar, and soon developed a reputation as one of the outstanding attorneys in northern Pennsylvania. He also became involved in local and state politics, serving as county treasurer from 1816 to 1817 and representing the county in the Pennsylvania General Assembly in 1820 and 1821. David Wilmot was among those who studied law in Kinney's office. Phoebe Kinney died in 1835, and in 1836, Simon and the rest of his family moved to Illinois, settling in Tiskilwa (Indiantown) in what would become Bureau County. Kinney became a farmer, hunter, politician, and attorney. In 1839, he married Andromick Chapman in La Salle County. A Whig, Kinney represented Bureau County at the Illinois state constitutional convention of 1847. In 1850, he was practicing law in Tiskilwa and owned real estate valued at $4,000.

Gravestone, Mount Bloom Cemetery, Tiskilwa, IL; C. F. Heverly, History of Sheshequin, 1777-1902 (Towanda, PA: Bradford Star, 1902), 65-66; H. C. Bradsby, ed., History of Bureau County, Illinois (Chicago: World, 1885), 297, 332, 402; Journal of the Convention, Assembled at Springfield, June 7, 1847 (Springfield, IL: Lanphier & Walker, 1847), 3; Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, La Salle County, 15 August 1839, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Indiantown, Bureau County, IL, 232.