THE City of McLeansboro


J. L. Sneed

     Our present sheriff, whose face stands at the head of this article, is a native-bred and born Hamilton countian.  Born in 1853 on a farm he received his education in the common schools of the county, after which he turned his attention to the raising of fine stock and grain and remained a husbandman until his party called him into politics in 1898, when he entered the race for the office of sheriff and was elected.

     Mr. Sneed is energetic in business and is also endowed with an intuitive knowledge of men and their methods.  These qualities are backed by great personal courage.  His administration of the office of sheriff has been highly commendable.

     Politically Mr. Sneed is a staunch democrat.  He has the qualifications for his position in an eminent degree, and the record he is making will certainly prepare him for other trusts that are sure to come to a man of his ability.

      Mr. Sneed is married and four children have blessed their union, and as he expresses it, he has one of the best wives to be found anywhere on God's green earth.  He is a pleasant and congenial gentleman and has a host of friends, it being not an uncommon thing for him to go on a prisoner's bond if necessary.


H. L. Maulding

     The present circuit court clerk, was born in this county in 1859 and has been identified with our people here all his life.  Receiving his education in the public schools he early equipped himself for his life work.  In 1884 he was appointed deputy circuit court clerk and in 1892 elected clerk.  In 1896 he stood for re-election, was successful, and is now closing his second term.  He has given eminent satisfaction in the performance of the duties of his office and therefore his friends are legion.  Mr. Maulding is married and has two children.

Silas Biggerstaff

 Whose face every man, woman and child in the county will recognize, is one of our substantial citizens, was born and reared here in Hamilton county, where he received his education in the schools of the period.  During the war of the rebellion he served as second lieutenant, company K, Eighteenth Illinois volunteers, and at its close returned to agricultural pursuits.  He now resides on the farm known as the Judge Crouch place, consisting of more than 500 acres, and turns his attention chiefly to stock raising and taking an active part in any and everything that pertains to the welfare of the county.  He was selected a member of the State Board of Equalization from the Twentieth congressional district in 1890, and was re-elected in 1894, serving eight years.  He is now a member of the Haw Creek special drainage commission, which has in charge the work which is intended to drain the put in cultivation over 30,000 acres of rich bottom land lying on the north side of the county.  Should this work prove 

successful, the advantage derived by the county will be incalculable.  Mr. Biggerstaff is an honored member of the G. A. R., has a wife and four children--two girls and two boys.  W. A., the eldest son, was appointed as first lieutenant in company L Ninth Illinois volunteers, and served in Cuba during the Spanish-American war.  Upon his muster out and return home he re-enlisted in company L, Forty-second U. S. V. infantry, and Chas. S., the youngest and remaining son, enlisted in Company G, Thirtieth U. S. V. infantry, and both are now serving their country in the Philippines.  Thus is love of country and martial glory transmitted from father to sons,

Napoleon Sneed

     The present state attorney, whose face stands at the head of this article, was born in Hamilton county in 1849, his father being one of the pioneers of the county.  His early education was entrusted to the common schools of the day, after which he attended select schools, and later read law under the tutelage of H. C. Vice of Macedonia.

     During these years he still worked his farm applying himself in the meantime assiduously to his books, keeping up with the current literature of the day and studying his volumes of Kent, Chitty, Greenleaf, Blackstone, Story, etc. to such an extent that in 1896 he was called upon and elected for four years to the office which he now holds, the term expiring the present year.  He has just received a re-nomination for the second term, having a majority of over 600 votes in the primary election, thus proving the hold he has upon our people.

     In the preparation of cases he is exceedingly careful, and in the exercise of his duties as state attorney he is ever on the alert to see that the interest of the state are respected.  The secret of his popularity is his fidelity to his friends.  He can always be relied upon to do just what he says he will do, and keeps his promises alike to friend and foe.  He is a democrat in politics, broad and liberal in his views, tolerant to the opinions of others, and as an example of honest stands high in the esteem of the community.  He goes about his business conscientiously and no man dare say that he has not been just. Mr. Sneed is married, has five children and lives in this city.

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