John R. Overstreet

John R. Overstreet (1819-1876) was born in Cabell County, Virginia (now West Virginia), in 1819 to Dabney and Jane Rogers Overstreet, but spent most of his life in Athens, Menard County, Illinois, and vicinity. His marriage to Rachel Cantrall in 1824 united the Hall-Overstreet group with two other early Illinois pioneers families: Levi Cantrall and Stephen England, both of whom settled in the Fancy Creek (Cantrall), area. John R. was listed in 1860 Menard County Census as the keeper of a hotel which was located on the northeast corner of North Main and E. Jackson Streets in Athens. They had six children: Vanessa, Louisa J. (Henry Shepherd), James W. (Mrs. Martha Dunlap), Elizabeth A. (Sebastian Bass Shepherd), Charles, and John T. (Maggie Bramen and Minnie Perkins).

In 1856, John and Alexander Hale erected a large, two story brick steam-operated flouring and saw mill in Athens, located across the street to the west of the Athens Methodist Church, at the corners of Jackson and Mill Streets. The mill burned in 1897 and was never rebuilt. By 1870, the family had moved to the Williamsville District near Fancy Creek, Sangamon County, Illinois. John R. Overstreet died in November 1876. His widow moved back to the Athens area and was living south of the city with granddaughters in 1880.

Submitted by Barbara Shannon Cox

Misc. Biographies Index

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Illinois Ancestors