Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens
JOHN F. UNDERHILL. The subject of this sketch belongs to that class of men who win in life's battles by sheer force of personality and determination, and in whatever he has undertaken he has shown himself to be a man of ability and honor. Mr. Underhill hails from "ye merrie isle of old England," and has the commendable characteristics of the people of that great kingdom, and since coming in our midst in Greene county fifteen years ago he has won a host of friends as a result of his even tenored life, and he ranks among the enterprising husbandman of Wilson township.
John F. Underhill was born in the southern part of England, February 27, 1864. He is a son of John and Susan Underhill, both born and reared in England, where they married and established their home and always resided. The death of the mother occurred on January 31, 1901, but the father survives at the advanced age of seventy-eight years. His active life was spent as a carpenter, and he was a very highly skilled and honest workman. His family consists of eight children, all surviving and all residing in England except the subject of this review. They were named, John F., our subject; Henry, James, Mary, Willie, Richard, Sarah, and Thersa.
John F. Underhill spent his boyhood in England and there received a common school education. He lived on a farm where fine blooded live stock was raised, and, having a natural bent toward this industry, learned a great deal about it. When seventeen years of age he immigrated to America, making a trip through Canada and the great Northwest, and finally settled in Chicago, where he worked at laboring for six months, but not taking very kindly to this kind of work, he longed for rural scenes instead and accordingly went to Butler county, Iowa, and took a position with K. S. Green on his large stock farm and remained there about eighteen years, this being the kind of work in which he delighted. He saved his earnings and on February 21, 1899, came to Greene county, Missouri, and purchased a farm in Wilson township, consisting of one hundred and twenty acres, on which he still resides, and which he has carefully tilled and kept well improved and now has a very attractive place. In connection with general farming he had, carried on stock raising in a successful manner, and has dealt extensively in horses and mules, his registered Percheron horses being admired by all who have seen them, and are among the best in this section of the state. He has prospered by his judicious methods of farming and handling live stock and is deserving of a great deal of credit for his large material success in view of the fact that he began life single handed and alone and has never had assistance from any source. He has never married and in connection with carrying on the work of his farm, he attends to his own household duties .
Politically, Mr. Underhill is a Republican in national affairs, but he votes independently in local elections, preferring to cast his ballot for the candidates whom he deems best suited for the offices sought. He takes an interest in all movements having for their object the general improvement of his vicinity, such as good roads, etc., and is regarded as a good neighbor and good citizen in every respect.
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