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The Dudley Family


Eastern Illinois University

Charleston, Illinois


Coles County



Additional Resources

mr dudley

mrs dudley


Dr. G. B. Dudley, circa 1925


         Mrs. Esther Shoot Dudley, circa 1925







The Dudley children, circa 1925.  Gerry Jane Dudley, Esther Dudley, Dorothy Ann Dudley, and Tilford Dudley.






        Dr. Dudley was one of the top medical doctor in Charleston.  He opened his medical office on Sixth Street, in the first block south of the square on the east side  one year after his marriage to Esther Wilhoit Shoot on July 27, 1905. His father is Eli Dudley of Ashmore, Illinois.  His grandfather is Guilford Dudley, who together with his brother, James Dudley, were two out of three bachelors responsible for the establishment of Bachelorsville, Illinois, in 1825.  This town was also called "Dudley's Settlement" and "Pie Town."

         Their personal background and their involvement with community groups made them Charleston's prominent citizens.  Dr. Dudley served on the Board of of Education, as Commander of the American Legion, as Trustee for the Methodist Church and as a member fo the Masonic Lodge.  Mrs. Dudley was involved with the Sally Lincoln Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution, the Charleston Panhellic, the Illinois Branch of the Sons and Daughters of Pilgrims,  the Women's Christian Temperance Union, and the Methodist Church.

        Dr. Dudley passed away in 1958.  Mrs. Esther Wilhoit Shoot Dudley passed away on July 1, 1960.  The house was then inherited by Tilford Eli Dudley, the oldest child of the Dudleys'.  Tilford, who lived in Washington D.C. used the house primarily as an investment property by having it rented.   Tilford Dudley gave the house to the Coles County Historical Society on September 15, 1982.  He also established the Gerry Brown Dudley award at Eastern Illinois University.