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Biography - CICERO J. LINDLY

Judge Cicero J. Lindly, who is now engaged in the general practice of law at Greenville, the judicial center of Bond county, has been a resident of Southern Illinois from the time of his nativity and is a scion of one of the prominent and honored pioneer families of this section of the state, with the development of whose resources the name has been closely identified. Judge Lindly has been a power in connection with political affairs in Southern Illinois, has served as a member of the state legislature and as county judge, as well as railway and warehouse commissioner, and was at one time a prominent candidate for Congress. He has gained secure prestige in his chosen profession and is one of the representative members of the bar of Bond county, where he controls a large and substantial practice and where he commands unequivocal popular esteem.

Cicero J. Lindly was born on a farm near St. Jacob, Madison county, Illinois, on the llth of December, 1857, and is a son of John J. and Mary A. (Palmer) Lindly. That the Lindly family was founded in Southern Illinois in the early pioneer epoch of the state's history is evident when it is stated that John J. Lindly likewise was born in Madison county and that the date of his nativity was 1831. There he was reared and educated and virtually his entire active career was devoted to the great basic industry of agriculture, in connection with which he gained distinctive success and prosperity. He lived retired for many years prior to his death, though he continued to give a personal supervision to his various farms and other important real-estate interests. In 1867 he established his home in the village of Lebanon, St. Clair county, where he passed the residue of his long and useful life, a citizen honored for his sterling character and marked ability, and he was summoned to eternal rest in 1909. He was a man of broad views and strong mentality, was a stalwart advocate of the principles of the Republican party and his religious faith was that of the Baptist church, of which he was a zealous member, as was also his first wife and is likewise his widow, who still resides at Lebanon. As a young man John J. Lindly was united in marriage to Miss Mary A. Palmer, who likewise was representative of a sterling pioneer family of Madison county, and they became the parents of four children, Joseph, Madison, Cicero J., and Mary A., the only daughter being now the wife of a Mr. Taylor. A number of years after the death of his first wife Mr. Lindly wedded Miss Ella P. Pierson, a native of New York, and she survives him, as has been previously noted in this paragraph. The two children of the second marriage are Cleda, who is the wife of William Wade, of Paris, Illinois; and Albert, who is a resident of this state.

Judge Cicero J. Lindly passed his childhood days on the old homestead farm and was about ten years of age at the time of the family removal to the village of Lebanon, where he fully availed himself of the advantages of the excellent public schools, after which he pursued a course of study in the law department of McKendree College. That he made rapid and substantial advancement in his absorption and assimilation of the science of jurisprudence is shown by a document in his possession. This is a letter issued by the court at Mount Vernon, Jefferson county, stating that he had passed the required examination before the same but that his license to practice law was withheld by reason of the fact that he had not yet attained to his legal majority and thus become eligible for admission to the bar. After leaving college Judge Lindly was for a time engaged in the work of his profession in the office of Ex-Governor Fletcher, in the city of St. Louis. In 1880 he assumed connubial responsibilities, and soon after his marriage he removed to a farm south of St. Jacob, Madison county, where he remained until the 2d of July, 1882, when he purchased a farm south of Greenville, Bond county, where he continued to devote his attention to diversified agriculture and stock-growing until 1900, when he established his home in Greenville. His activities and influence had in the meanwhile transcended the limitation of his farm, which fine property he still owns, and he had become an influential factor in. public affairs.

Unswerving and ardent allegiance to the Republican party has ever characterized Judge Lindly and, with admirably fortified convictions concerning matters of economic and political import, he has proved an effective advocate of the principles and policies for which the "Grand Old Party ' ' stands sponsor. In 1884 he represented his native state as presidential elector on the Republican ticket, and in 1888 he was a delegate to the national convention of his party when General Harrison was nominated for the presidency. In 1886 he was elected county judge of Bond county, and he continued to preside on this bench, with marked ability and favor, for a term of years. In 1890 he was nominated for the office of state treasurer and in the ensuing election was defeated by only forty votes. In the same year he was the candidate of his party for representative in the United States congress, but was defeated by normal political exigencies, as the district was strongly Democratic. In 1891 he received in the state legislature all of the Republican votes for representative in the United States senate, the contest being recorded as one of the prolonged and spirited order and his opponent having been Hon. Palmer, who received one hundred and two votes to one hundred given in support of Judge Lindly. In 1896 Judge Lindly was appointed a member of the state railway and warehouse commission, and he retained this office for five years, as did he also that of chairman of the lower house of the state legislature, in which body his service was marked by earnest and loyal efforts to conserve wise legislation, the estimate placed upon his work being shown most conclusively by his retention of the office for three consecutive- terms, during the last of which he was chairman of the Republican committee of the house. In 1908 Judge Lindly assumed charge of organizing forces and perfecting the plans for the issuing of bonds by the state in the amount of twenty million dollars, and in behalf of this important measure he made an earnest and effective canvass of the entire state. Since the completion of this work he has been engaged in the general practice of his profession at Greenville and his large and important business is based on his well proved ability as a trial lawyer and conservative counsellor of broad information and mature judgment. He has been a delegate to every Republican state convention in Illinois since 1884 and has been an effective and valued campaign worker, with high reputation as a public speaker on political issues.

Judge and Mrs. Lindly are members of the Christian church in their home city and are prominently identified with the leading social activities of the community. In the time-honored Masonic fraternity he has attained to the thirty-second degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite and he has held various official chairs in the different Masonic bodies with which he is affiliated, including the Illinois Grand Lodge of Free & Accepted Masons. He has also served as grand master of the Illinois Grand Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and as grand representative of the same for two terms. He is identified with the Masonic adjunct organization, the Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, and also with the Greenville lodge of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.

On the 20th of December, 1880, was solemnized the marriage of Judge Lindly to Miss Alice J. McNeal, of Greenville, and they became the parents of three children, all of whom died before attaining to adult age.

Extracted 10 Nov 2018 by Norma Hass from 1912 History of Southern Illinois, by George W. Smith, volume 3, pages 1546-1548.

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