They Left Their Mark In Oakford, 1872

Whitley Boys
Page 14

Doctor James D. Whitley (standing) and his brother John were two of the earliest settlers of the village of Oakford They Were from England and came to in 1846 settling in New York The two boys served in the Union Army as drummer boys throughout Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, and Arkansas. James later was assigned to a hospital in Arkansas where he was in charge of the dispensary and made acting assistant surgeon until 1865. On his return from the service, James took up practice at Robinson Mills, Illinois.

Here he practiced medicine as well as serving as postmaster until 1872. When the town of Oakford was founded on the railroad to the northwest some three miles he moved his home to the new village. He relinquished his rights as postmaster to John Bonnett at Robinson Mills, but was appointed postmaster of Oakford for one year when he left to attend Rush College for a study in medicine. Upon his return he again took over as postmaster as well as practiced medicine. The two front rooms of the house now occupied by Mrs. Roy Lynn was his home in Oakford. In 1879 he turned his practice over to young Dr. Jacob Allen Bolinger, a graduate of Rush College. John Whitley came to Oakford about the same time serving as police magistrate of the village and working at different trades in the town. He was probably the most active member of the Modern Woodman of America Lodge.

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