Illustrated Atlas Map of Menard County, Illinois 1874|
Published by W.R. Brink & Co., of Illinois
John Kennedy Kincaid
The grandfather of John Kennedy Kincaid, Archibald R. Kincaid, was born in Ireland. On his father's side he was of Scotch-Irish descent, and on his mother's Welsh.
Archibald Kincaid emigrated to America, and settled near Carlisle, Pennsylvania. He here married a Miss Townsley, and continued to reside in the fertile and beautiful Cumberland Valley till 1795; when, with his family of ten children, he removed to Bath County, Kentucky. Andrew, the father of the subject of our sketch, was at that time four years old. He remained on his father's farm till his marriage, in 1807, with Ann P. Caldwell, a native of Bath County, born in 1787. In 1834, Andrew Kincaid came to Illinois, and located in Township 18, Range 6, on land purchased of Ellis Branson. His family then consisted of nine children, of whom one died soon after his arrival in Illinois. After a long and useful career, Andrew Kincaid terminated his life in 1872, at the ripe age of eighty-seven.
John Kennedy Kincaid was the eldest child, born June 30, 1808, in Bath County, Kentucky. He came to Illinois two years before the other of the family. Ascending the Illinois River to Beardstown, he walked from there to Springfield, and soon after came to Menard County. He had learned the carpenter's trade in Kentucky, and he engaged in labor for one month on the front of Harry Riggin's old residence. His time was taken up with his business as a carpenter, farming, and teaching school, till his marriage with Miss Vienna, daughter of James Williams, which occurred in March, 1836.
He has since devoted his time almost entirely to farming, and his skill and energy have met with deserved success. Few farmers know how to grow a better crop of corn; and his judgment in handling live-stock has been a source of material advantage. It has been his custom to sell but little corn; always, as far as possible, putting the product of his farm into stock. Of the fourteen children that have been born to him, only six are living: Hannah E. and Ann Eliza are twin sister, the one the wife of John Dalby, and the other of Robert Young; Joseph H. lives near Irish Grove; John Henry, Huldah, and Julie Ettie are at home. Melinda was the wife of Carlin Green, and is now dead. James W. also died after attaining years of maturity.
Mr. Kincaid's intelligence and habits of earnest thought have led him to take a decided stand in regard to the issues of the day. He was an old Whig, and, when the Republican party was organized, his moral convictions induced him to maintain its principles. His sympathies were always warmly enlisted with the anti-slavery cause. He was well acquainted with Lincoln, was an ardent admirer of Henry Clay, and it was under the guidance of such men as these that his political convictions have been formed. His religious and moral sentiments have been as strongly marked. From the age of seventeen he has been an active member of the Presbyterian Church, in which his wife has also been a communicant from her fifteenth year. His children have been reared under these happy influences, and all are well situated in life.
His prosperity is due to his own energy and the favoring smile of Providence. When he came to Illinois, fifty dollars comprised all the capital he possessed with which to begin his career. An intelligent industry has won its reward, and he is now recognized as one of the prominent and influential citizens of the County. He has never coveted public honors, but has preferred instead the quiet of private life; wishing rather to make his mark as an intelligent farmer and a useful member of the community. He has always been liberal in his support of moral and educational enterprises, the churches and schools of the neighborhood, and has ever been foremost in the development of the best interests of the County.