Source: Thje Biographical Record of Bureau, Marshall and Putnam Counties, Illinois
Originally published 1896
S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., Chicago, IL
Reproduced on CD purchased from OLD GLORY ACCENTS
RELATED LINK: Index to all Biographies from this book
Transcribed by Denise McLoughlin
Tampico Area Historical Society
JAMES C. LONG, United States assistant engineer, residing at Tiskilwa, Illinois, was born in Hamilton county, Tennessee, December 2, 1844, a son of John P. and Eliza (SMITH) LONG, who were also natives of that state. In early life the father engaged in merchandising in Chattanooga, but later practiced law there for many years. He was one of the three commissioners that laid out that city about 1840, at which time it was an unbroken wodded tract, which the Indians had left just two years previously. He had raised a company for the Florica war, but hostilities ceased before it was mustered into service. From early manhood he was an elder inthe Presbyterian church, and died in that faith in 1890, at the age of eighty-three years. His faithful wife, who is a member of the same church, is still living in her eighty-fourth year and is well reserved both mentally and physically. She is widely known in the community where she makes her home, and still occasionally writes for the newspapers, giving reminiscences of former years - a theme in which she takes great delight. Her father, William SMITH, was a native of Massachusetts, and when a young man went to Tennessee, where he married Elizabeth COSBY, a native of that state.
Mr. LONG, of this review, is one of a family of six children, only two of whom survive, his younger brother being Marcus B., still a resident of Chattanooga. Our subject was educted as midshipmant at Annapolis, Maryland, closing his course there on the outbreak of the civil war. In October 1880, he enlisted in the confederate service and was made midshipman in Commondore Lynch's squadron. He was midshipman on board the gunboar Curlew, which was sunk at the battle of Roanoke Island, the first engagement in which he participated. He was then orderd to th Merrimac, and on the first days of its battle with the union fleet twenty-one of its men were killed and wounded, but on the second day's battle with the Monitor no men were lost. Mr. LONG contnued inthe navy until hostilities had ceased when he was captured by theunion forces, but was treated more like a guest than a prisoner. At the end of a week he was released, took the amnesty oath and returned home.
On the close of the war, Mr. LONG was emplyed in the quartermaster's department of the United States government as draftsman, where he remained for a few months, and then entered the employ of General WEITZEL at Chattanooga, which position he held for several years. Later he was for two years engineer for the Alabama & Great Southern railroad, located in Georgia and Alabama, and was afterwqrd under Major McFARLAND in the United States army emply as engineeer for eight years. He was next with the East Tennessee, Virginia & Georgia railroad for about three year, for about a year was then engaged in private business at Birmingham, Alabama, and subsequently was in the United States engineering deparment under Major STICKNEY as New Orleans and Captain TABOR at Little Rock, Arkansas. For three years he was afterward superintendent of public works at Birmingham, Alabma, after which he was again in the United States engineering deprmtnt under Captain BIXBY at Wilmnington, North Carolina, for six months, and was next engineer for the Macon & Birmingham Railroad company with headquarters at Macon. On leaaving their employ, Mr. LONG wa engaged in private business at Birmingham for two years, and in 1892 came to Tiskilwa as engineer, under Major W. L. MARSHALL, United States army, of Chicago. He is an expert civil engineer, doing all kinds of engineering for railroads, canals, rivers, harbors, bridges and highways, and his work has proved eminently satisfactory to all concerned. For six years he followed the sea, from 1859 until 1865, and from June 1st to December 1, 1868, he was on a whaling vouage, near the Bermudas and along the coast of Africa, during which time he caught several sperm whales, the teeth of which he still has in his possession.
On the 20th of November, 1872, Mr. LONG was united in marriage with Miss Fannie WALKER, a daughter of William A. qnd Corilla M. (PORTER) WALKER, of Birmingham, Alabama. They now have five children, as follows: Dr. Willliam W., a practicing physician of Chattanooga, is a graduate of medicine of the U. S. Grant university of anatomy in the Chatanooga Medical college although he is yet only twenty-two years of age, John P., a drug clerk of Chattanooga, is studying pharmacy, James C., Mary C., and Crawford J. are all attending the public schools ofTiskilwa. The parents are both eonsistant members of the Presbyterian church, and socially Mr. LONG is a Royal Arch Mason, and a member of Camp Hardee of Confederate Veterans of Birmingham, Alabama. He also belongs to the Western Society of Engineers located at Chicago, and politics is a sound money democrat. In all the various relations of life he is upright and honorable, and although he has made his home in Tiskilwa but a short time has gained a wide circle of friends and acquaintances.