Mills, Henry J.

Born: 1785-04-13 Massachusetts

Died: 1854-04-05 Edwards County, Illinois

Flourished: Edwards County, Illinois

Mills grew up in Marietta, Ohio, but lived for several years in Vincennes, Indiana. He later settled in Kentucky, from which he moved to Lancaster, Illinois, in 1814 and brought at least one enslaved person with him. He eventually settled in Edwards County. Mills was appointed census taker in 1825 and built his own farm in 1830. A Whig, he won election to the Illinois General Assembly multiple times, served as a representative from 1826 to 1828, and then as a senator from 1832 to 1840. Mills also fought in the War of 1812 and reached the rank of colonel. He had four children by two wives. In 1850, he was working as a farmer and owned $2,000 in real estate.

Gravestone, Mills Cemetery, West Salem, IL; Combined History of Edwards, Lawrence and Wabash Counties, Illinois (Edwardsville, IL: McDonough, 1883), 76, 87, 96, 125, 303, 312; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Edwards County, IL, 280; John Clayton, comp., The Illinois Fact Book and Historical Almanac, 1673-1968 (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1970), 200, 202, 203, 205, 206.