Wright, Erastus

Born: 1799-01-21 Bernardston, Massachusetts

Died: 1870-11-21 Springfield, Illinois

Wright arrived in Springfield, Illinois, with his father in 1821. On June 15, 1831, he married Jane Gardner. Wright spent three or four years in the lead-mining region of Illinois and Wisconsin, and laid out the town of Mineral Point, Wisconsin. He was one of the earliest teachers in Sangamon County, Illinois, and taught for many years. For ten years he filled the office of school commissioner of Sangamon County. During that time, a large amount of money, derived from the sale of government land for school purposes, passed through his hands. He was one of the earliest abolitionists in the county and supported the Whig Party. In 1850, Wright was a land agent in Sangamon County and owned real property valued at $7,000. In 1860, he was retired with real estate worth $60,000 and personal property worth $6,000. Wright was a pallbearer at Abraham Lincoln's funeral.

Bruce Alexander Campbell, The Sangamon Saga: 200 Years: An Illustrated Bicentennial History of Sangamon County (Springfield: Phillips Brothers, 1976), 102; History of Sangamon County, Illinois (Chicago: Inter-State, 1881), 514-15; John Carroll Power and S. A. Power, History of the Early Settlers of Sangamon County, Illinois (Springfield, IL: Edwin A. Wilson, 1876), 788-89; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Sangamon County, IL, 302; U.S. Census Office, Eighth Census of the United States (1860), Springfield, Sangamon County, IL, 71; Illinois State Journal 22 November 1870, 4:2-3.