Source: History of Whiteside County, IL, edited by Charles Bent, Morrison, IL 1877
Transcribed by: Denise McLoughlin, Tampico Area Historical Society www.tampicohistoricalsociety.citymax.com
NATHANIEL NORTON was born in the State of Maine, in 1805, and came to Portland in 1837. He purchased the claim of William H. CUSHMAN, and having considerable means infused a great deal of life into the new settlement. He opened a store shortly after his arrival, and sold goods for a number of years. During this time his store was broken into, the theives cutting through the outer wall, and robbed of quite an amunt of stock, thus making him the victim of the first burglary commited in Portland. In 1837 he started the first nursery in Whiteside county, and some of the finest orchards in the county today are from trees procured of him. Two of the trees from his nursery, on the farm of Frank CUSHING, in Portland, bore fifty bushels of apples each the present season, 1877. Mr. NORTON added largely in the erection of Sharon church, and as long as the edifice stands his memory will be held dear by those who worship within its walls. Struggling as were the pioneers even at the time when the building was erected, itis doubtful if such a structure could have been built without Mr. NORTON'S aid. He went to Chicago in 1843, and engaged in business, and is accounted one of the largest capitalists in that city. He was married in 1838 to Miss Sally Ann GETTY. Their children were: Augusta, who married Lemuel R. HALL and is now a resident of Chicago, and a child which died in infancy.