Pioneering Families
... with Roots in Madison County

Index to
  JOHN G. McWILLIAMS was born on June 15, 1839, at Peterboro, Madison Co., N.Y., and received his education at the Peterboro Academy. In the fall of 1855, he began his business career as a clerk in a dry-goods store at Peterboro, where he remained until February 1857, when he came to Chicago, entering the retail dry-goods house of W.R. Wood & Co., as a salesman. He remained in their employ until September 1861, when he entered the 51st Illinois Infantry as captain, afterward being promoted to major in March, 1864, and serving until March, 1865, when he was honorably discharged. He then returned to Chicago, and entered the employ of Field, Palmer & Leiter, as a salesman, which position he held until he attained his present one of partner, in January, 1883. Mr. McWilliams was married, in 1867, to Miss K. M. Willard, of Chicago, who died in November, 1884, leaving one child, Roy.

Source: Andreas, A. T. History of Chicago. 1884-1886. New York: Arno Press (reprint),  1975. Volume 2, p. 695.


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