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Shurtleff, John M.

Born: 1796-07-28 Massachusetts

Died: 1842-10-06 Pleasant Grove, Illinois

Alternate name: Shurtluff, Shurtliff, Shirtliff

Born in Carver, Massachusetts, John M. Shurtleff—who went by Milton Shurtleff—was a militia man, teacher, and real estate investor. He served as a private in a militia company in Carver before relocating to Hillsboro, Illinois, in the winter of 1821. He taught school in Hillsboro for some time, and, in the spring of 1821, married Molly Killpatrick, with whom he had three children and several others who died in infancy. He moved with his family to Waverly about 1822, where they were the first white settlers in the area. Molly died August 31, 1835, and on December 3, 1835, he married Mary F. Berry. They moved to Groveland in Tazewell County, Illinois sometime before the birth of their first child together in 1837. They eventually had a total of three children together. Between 1825 and 1838, he purchased large tracts of public land in Morgan, Tazewell, Sangamon, and Knox counties.

Massachusetts, U.S., Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988(Provo, UT: Ancestry.com Operations, 2011); Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, Montgomery County, 6 May 1821; Tazewell County, 3 December 1835, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; History of Morgan County, Illinois (Chicago: Donnelley, Loyd, 1878), 420; Christiana Holmes Tillson, A Woman's Story of Pioneer Illinois, ed. by Milo Milton Quaife (Chicago: Lakeside Press, 1919), 17, 23, 73; Benjamin Shurtleff, Descendants of William Shurtleff of Plymouth and Marshfield, Massachusetts (Revere, MA: Benjamin Shurtleff, 1912), 1:157-58; For an exhaustive list of Shurtleff's land purchases, search "Shurtleff Milton" and "Shurtliff Milton," https://www.ilsos.gov/isa/landsrch.jsp; Gravestone, Deacon Street Cemetery, Morton, IL.