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About C.H.Moore

C.H. Moore


Clifton Haswell Moore 1880's
Clifton Haswell Moore was born on October 26, 1817 in Kirtland, Ohio, the oldest of eight children born to Isaac and Philena Blish Moore. He worked on his father's farm while attending school at the Painesville Academy and the Western Reserve Teachers' Seminary. In 1833 at the age of sixteen, Moore left home to teach school in Bedford, Ohio. He arrived in Pekin, Illinois in the spring of 1839. Supporting himself by teaching, he began reading law and was admitted to the bar in 1841 at the age of twenty-three. In August 1841, Moore became the first resident lawyer in Clinton. It wasn't long before he realized that a lawyer in any small county seat could not make more than a decent living by the pure practice of law. In 1848 he formed a land speculating partnership with Judge David Davis that lasted until the death of Judge Davis in 1886. Moore and Davis poured the majority of their resources into purchasing land in Kansas and Nebraska, as well as Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri. Both were considered very wealthy by 1851. Mr. Moore was then thirty-four years of age.
 Moore became friends with Abraham Lincoln when Lincoln was riding the Eighth Judicial Circuit through Dewitt County. They were law associates working together on many cases and opposing each other on many others. Mr. Moore attended the Republican National Convention in 1860 and is said to have done much toward securing Lincoln's nomination for president. There is no doubt that Moore could have held a prominent political position because of his close association with Lincoln, but always declared himself not to be a politician and never would be. By the time the first train passed through Clinton in 1854, Mr. Moore had been the railroad attorney for over two years and was mainly responsible for securing the right of way and getting the depot located in Clinton. When C. H. Moore purchased the Homestead, he added the west wing containing this two-story library mainly because he needed a place to house his vast collection of books and newspapers. He owned the largest and best private library outside of Chicago containing thousands of volumes among which were many rare and costly editions as well as bound volumes of newspapers. He encouraged his tenants and all citizens to use his library. The furniture in the library was chosen by C. H. Moore, including the Wooten desk designed especially for Mr. Moore by William Wooten. A paralytic stroke convinced him that his death was near. Three months later Clifton Haswell Moore died on April 29, 1901 at the age of 83 leaving a vast estate, known as the C. H. Moore Trust Estate.

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