Excerpt from Sterling Gazette, July 29, 1941
AUGUST MATHIS, 94, OLDEST RESIDENT OF HOOPPOLE SUCCUMBS
Prominent in Civic Affairs and Builder of HY&T Railroad
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Mr. Mathis was born Feb. 4, 1847 in Sundance A****-Lorraine, son of Philip and Elizabeth Mathis. His father, a miller by trade came to America with his family when August was but 18 months old. The family settled in Yorktown town-ship [sic] in May 1855. When eight years of age, the family moved to Hooppole. Mr. Mathis attended Hooppole Grove school [photo].
During the Civil war, Mr. Mathis sold himself as a substitute in the Union army but his parents refused to let him go. In 1872 he married Miss Susie Shuck of Geneseo, and they lived on the Mathis homestead for two years. In later years, he purchased and lived on various farms in the vicinity and was an extensive livestock raiser. He was active in the community, having been a school trustee drainage district commissioner and for 12 years was a supervisor from Yorktown township. He was one of the groups who organized and built the Hooppole, Yorktown and Tampico railroad.
In 1888 Mr. and Mrs. Mathis retired from farming and moved to Hooppole. Mrs. Mathis died March 23, 1920. The couple were the parents of four children, Mrs. Clyde (Flora) Bunker, and Philip J. Mathis, both of who died and Howard E. and Allen R. Mathis, operators of the Hooppole Lumber and Grain Co. June 22, 1922. Mr. Mathis married Mrs. Lillian Mannon, who survives with the two sons named, five grandchildren and one great-grandson. Stepchildren surviving are Fred Jones of Sterling: Mrs. Herbert Hoon of Dixon; Mrs. Roy Grenier and James Mannon both of Maywood. He was preceded in death by his first wife, a son Philip and a daughter, Mrs. Clyde Bunker, and by five brothers, William, Albert, Edward, Samuel and George, and one sister, Mrs. Louise Leonard.