GEORGE FERRE, the leading business man of Dalton City, Moultrie County, located in
this town in April, 1872, which date is identical with the founding of Dalton City. He
is the proprietor of two flourishing stores in one of which he carries a general stock and in the
other hardware. He was born in Perry, Pike County, Ill., January 6, 1845, being the son of Lucian and
Ann (Ayars) Ferre, the former a native of Canada and the latter of England.
The paternal grandfather of our subject, Daniel Ferre, was a native of Springfield, Mass., but passed
the last years of his life in Canada and thus the father of our subject had his nativity in that dominion.
There Lucian Ferre grew to manhood and was married. He had taken the trade of a blacksmith
and concluded that in the newer regions of Illinois would be the best place to carry on his
trade. He therefore migrated here, becoming an early settler in Pike County, locating at Perry,
where he engaged in the manufacture of plows. In that early day Illinois possessed but one short
line of railway, that from Naples to Jacksonville, therefore he was compelled to journey in primitive
fashion to the new home, coming in a wagon except when crossing the lake.
In September, 1856, he determined to give up the plow business and devote himself to agricultural
pursuits, removing to Macon County, and settling on a farm in the vicinity of the city of
Macon. There he lived until death called him hence in 1875, his age being sixty-four years. His
faithful and beloved wife had preceded him to the spirit world, three months previous to his demise,
having passed away at the age of sixty-five. They had a family of five children, namely: Louisa,
who married H. H. Brengelman of Perry, Pike County, Ill.; William H. who died in January, 1875,
leaving a family of two children: George, our subject; Sarah, who married J. H. Gibson of Macon,
Ill.; Emily A. who resides at Perry. The father of this family was a man of ability and succeeded in
accumulating a handsome property, and the later years of himself and wife were prosperous and
comfortable ones. They were held in high esteem by the people with whom they made their home
and were active in church work, he being a Deacon in the Baptist Church of Moweaqua.
The boyhood of our subject was passed in Perry and later on the farm in Macon County, where he
received thorough instruction and practice in the duties of farm life and took his schooling in the
district schools. This education was further supplemented by a course of study at Shurtleff College,
Upper Alton. Ill. He pursued farming until some twenty-five years of age and then came to
Dalton City and entered upon the business of buying and selling grain, and in the fall of 1872
purchased an interest in a general store, and as a member of the firm of Webb & Ferre, carried on
business for five years, after which he became the sole proprietor and in 1887 added a hardware
store to the list of his enterprises. His success has been marked and he is rapidly accumulating a
handsome property. He now owns seven acres of land near Dalton, one hundred and sixty in
Shelby County, Ill., one hundred and sixty in Macon County, Ill., and one hundred and sixty in
A happy and congenial marriage was contracted November 17, 1875, between George Ferre and
Eleanor Dalton, daughter of James Dalton. This lady was born in the North of England and as
her mother died when she was quite a small child she was placed under the care of her uncle, Thomas
Dalton, in whose honor Dalton City is named and was bought by him to the United States, and
reared and educated under his fostering care. The following children have been born to Mr. and Mrs.
Ferre, Daisy L., Mabel and Guy. They are being carefully and judiciously reared and educated and
are being conscientiously instructed by their parents in the Christian faith. For nine years Mr. Ferre
was Postmaster at Dalton. In politics he is a stanch and sturdy Republican and is also identified
with the Knights of Honor.
Portrait and Biographical Record of Shelby and Moultrie Counties, 1891 - p. 686/687
Transcription copyright 2003/2007, Moultrie County ILGenWeb/USGenWeb