Ransdell Sr., Wharton

Born: 1785 Virginia

Flourished: Springfield, Illinois

Alternate name: Ransdall

By January 1832, Ransdell lived in Springfield, Illinois, when he took over operation of the Springfield Hotel. By the end of the year, he had expanded his business, which was known at various times as the Springfield Hotel, the Washington Hotel, and Ransdell's Tavern. In January 1836, Ransdell moved his business to a larger building and named it the Eagle Tavern, and in 1839, he established his own stagecoach line to run between Vandalia and his hotel in Springfield. In 1833, Ransdell was the jailor for the city of Springfield. Politically, he was a Whig, but he was opposed to the statewide party leadership of Abraham Lincoln and others, called the "Springfield Junto." As such, he lost an 1838 bid to represent Sangamon County in the Illinois House of Representatives, garnering only about 10% of the vote, which was instead won by Lincoln, five other Whigs, and one Democrat. In 1839, Ransdell's hotel changed hands and became known as the Globe Tavern. In 1847, Ransdell was elected as a justice of the peace for Springfield. In 1850, he made his living as a baker in Springfield.

Sangamo Journal (Springfield, IL), 26 January 1832, 3:5, 22 December 1832, 3:1, 15 June 1833, 4:1, 22 March 1834, 1:6, 23 January 1836, 3:1, 9 February 1839, 1:3, 7 June 1839, 1:3, 12 August 1847, 1:2; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Sangamon County, IL, 111; 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), 321.