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Pleasant Grove Township


Eastern Illinois University

Charleston, Illinois


Coles County



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pleasant grove township

History of Pleasant Grove Township and Its First Settlers

Pleasant Grove is the center township in the southern tier of townships in Coles County, Illinois. It was one of the first areas settled in the county, due in part to its abundance of forests and good timber. The only large prairie in the township is Goosenest Prairie.

The history of those who first settled the township is disputed. Some believe the first settlement was in 1827, near the head of Muddy Point Creek, by Isaac Fancher and Buck Houchin; however, some assert that Jack Price was in the region prior to that. In 1828 or 1829, John Gordon came to Pleasant Grove and lived in a cabin built by a Baptist preacher, Daniel Barham. A number of other families settled in the township in 1829, including Michael Taylor and his son Elijah, the Balchs, the Drydens, and the Odells.

The summer of 1831 saw more settlers to the area, including more members of the Balch family, John W. and Louisa Rodgers, and Thomas and William Jeffries.

The Lincoln Family came to Pleasant Grove Township in 1832 and obtained land on the Goosenest Prairie. Thomas and Sarah Bush Lincoln, the father and step-mother of Abraham Lincoln, spent the remainder of their lives in Pleasant Grove Township.

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