Volume: 1 Box
Reproduction: Permission to reproduce or publish material in this collection must be obtained in writing from the McLean County Museum of History
George W. Funk was the firstborn son of the Hon. Isaac Funk, Sr. and Cassandra Sharp, founders and pioneers of Funk’s Grove. He was born May 14, 1827 in Funk’s Grove. At the time of his father’s first appearance in Funk’s Grove, in 1824, the prairie of the “Old Northwest” (as it was then known) was sparsely populated. Population totals for this area in 1820 were estimated at less than two persons per square mile. George was described as being 5’ 10 ½” in height and about 200 pounds in weight with grey eyes and black hair.
His education began at the age of seven and he travelled one and a half miles to the log schoolhouse in Funk’s Grove. After the age of ten, George only attended school during the winter as he worked the family farm during the other seasons until he was eighteen. He attended school in this way until age twenty-one.
George was assisting his father on the farmstead at an early age, and in time trained his nine younger siblings, earning from them the nickname “The General.” He was 16 when he made his first livestock drive to Chicago. He was considered an excellent business man and handled his father’s affairs during the final decade of Isaac’s life.
On January 29, 1868 George married Susan Pumpnelly, a native of Ohio, who died less than a year later, 6 days after giving birth to their first child Isaac George. George remarried on May 30, 1876 to Rosealtha Fitzwilliam, also a native of Ohio. Three children were born from this union, Madeline, William, and Julius. They had a home in Bloomington at 401 East Washington Street as well as their farmhouse in Funk’s Grove.
As busy as he was with farming, George found time to pursue his interest in banking at the First National Bank of Bloomington and in serving the local government in Mt. Hope Township as a member of the Board of Supervisors. Though he identified with the old Whig party in his early years he was elected as a Republican member of the lower house of the Legislature for the 1871-72 term. In 1879 he was described as a stock-dealer and owned 3,200 acres in McLean County and 4,400 acres by 1887.
George was known to frequent Cash Harlan’s Cigar Store in his later years, gathering with other elders to discuss agriculture and politics. He died July 5, 1911.
Cavanagh, H. M. (1952). Funk of Funk’s Grove: Farmer, legislator and cattle king of the Old Northwest 1797-1865. Bloomington, Ill.: Pantagraph Printing.
Duis, E. (1874). The good old times in McLean County, Illinois. Leader Publishing.
The History of McLean County, Illinois. Chicago: Wm. Le baron, Jr. & Co., 1879.
Portrait and biographical album of McLean County, Ill. Chicago: Chapman Brothers, 1887.
Schertz, R. S., Ed. (1984). A tree grows in Funks Grove: A history of the Funk-Stubblefield families of McLean County, Illinois. Bloomington, Ill.: Funks Grove Cemetery Association.
This collection contains a variety of financial and legal papers pertaining to George W. Funk which were found in the McLean home of his son Isaac George Funk by Isaac’s granddaughter, Betty Peacock. Also included is a copy of George W.’s last will and testament and an anonymous, threatening letter addressed to George W. concerning his second wife Rose.
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|1.1||Promissory note for $1000 to be paid to G.W. Funk dated January 12, 1888|
|1.2||Letter concerning the holding of stock shares as security to G.W. Funk by Swann, dated November 19, 1892.|
|1.3||Letter from Swann & Strickle dated November 23, 1892.|
|1.4||Letter from Swann dated December 2, 1892.|
|1.5||Letter from Swann dated December 16, 1892.|
|2.1||Tax receipt from McLean County dated March 9, 1895.|
|2.2||Wm. Harpole. S.G. Fry. J. P. Shinn. Union Stock Yards, Chicago, March 20 1895. Bill of Sale to the account of G. W. Funk.|
|2.3||Wm. Harpole. S.G. Fry. J. P. Shinn. Union Stock Yards, Chicago, March 20 1895. Bill of Sale to the account of Funk & Ross.|
|2.4||Tax receipt from McLean County dated March 23, 1898.|
|2.5||Tax receipt from McLean County dated February 24, 1899.|
|3.1||Letters Testamentary, dated August 7th, 1911, and Last Will and Testament dated April 24, 1909.|
|4.1||Anonymous and threatening letter, undated, entitled “Your Choice”, addressed to George W. Funk.|
|5.1||Webster’s Assay Office, Helena, Montana. September 18, 1894. Certifying a sample assayed for Charles Dalton.|
|5.2||Mineral certificate no. 3717 to George W. Funk, dated November 2, 1893. Folder 6: Funk, Isaac G. – Railroad Right-of-Way|
|6.1||Right of way plat. S.A. route 16A, sec. 47, M.F.T. McLean County, undated.|
|7.1||Abstract of Title, dated February 14, 1870, for Lot 15 being the SW ¼ & SE ¼ of section 16 in Township 23, North, Range 5 East, 40 22/100 acres in McLean County, from 1855-1870|
|7.2||Quit-Claim Deed, dated February 27, 1871, for the west half of the NE quarter, also 23 acres off the east side of the NW quarter of sec. 31 in Township 22, North, Range 1 East of the 3rd principal meridian.|
|7.3||Warranty Deed, dated October 28, 1871, with attached certification of copy (dated January 16, 1878), for the NW ¼ of sec. 12, and the east half of the NE ¼ of sec. 11 in Township 21, North of Range 2 East of the 3rd principal meridian.|
|7.4||Certificate of Purchase, dated May 16, 1877, for the east half of the NW ¼ of sec. 11.|
|7.5||Quit-Claim Deed, dated January 24, 1878, for the NW ¼ of sec. 12, Township 21, Range 2, east of the 3rd principal meridian.|
|7.6||Quit-Claim Deed, dated June 17, 1878, for the NW ¼ of sec. 12, etc.|
|7.7||Examination of Title, SW ¼ of sec. 1 in Township 21, north of Range 2 east, the SE ¼ of sec. 2, the W ½, W ½, SE ¼ of sec. 1, dated from 1836-1870. Also included is an abstract of title, dated August 19, 1878.|
|7.8||Court decision dated December 3, 1878.|
|7.9||Abstract, dated January 3, 1879, for SE ¼ of Sec. 11, east ½, NE ¼ sec. 11, NW ¼ sec. 12, SW ¼ and W ½ W ½ SE ¼ sec 2, east ½ . . . etc., from 1870-1778.|
|7.10||Certificate of Purchase form, 1879.|
|7.11||Sheriff’s Deed on Execution, dated May 17 1879, for the NE ¼ of sec. 2, Township 21, North of Range 2, east of the 3rd P.M.|
|7.12||Certificate of Purchase, dated June 17, 1879.|
|7.13||Abstract of Title, dated July 5, 1879, for the NE ¼ of sec. 2 in township 21, North of Range 2 . . . etc., from 1860-1879.|
|7.14||Master’s Deed, dated March 3, 1880, for the SW ¼ of sec. 1, . . .etc.|
|7.15||Master’s Deed, dated March 3, 1880, for NW ¼ of sec. 12, . . .etc.|
|7.16||Warrantee Deed, dated March 15, 1880, for the East ½ of the SW ¼ of sec. 6, Township 22, . . .etc.|
|7.17||Real Estate Mortgage, dated September 7, 1888.|
|8.1||Release, dated January 25, 1889.|
|8.2||Warrantee Deed, dated January 25, 1889, for the W ½ of the NE ¼ of sec. 35, township 22, . . . etc.|
|8.3||Abstract of title, dated May 7, 1892, for the SW ¼ of the NE ¼ and the NW ¼ of the SE ¼ of sec. 25 in Township 23, North of Range 6, East of the 3rd P.M. in McLean Co., from 1853-1892.|
|8.4||Mortgage, dated February 7, 1890.|
|8.5||Insurance Policy, dated June 18, 1891.|
|8.6||Lease, dated February 5, 1894, between G.W. Funk and William Finger|
|8.7||Lease, dated February 16, 1894, between G.W. Funk and Henry Fawber.|
|8.8||Abstract of Title, dated February 2 1899, for Lot 2 of the SW ¼ of sec. 6, Township 24, North Range 4 East of the 3rd Principal Meridian, in McLean Co., from 1850-1899.|
|8.9||Abstract of Title, dated November 20, 1899, for E ½ of the SW ¼ of sec. 6, Township 22, North Range 5 E. of the 3rd P.M., from 1835-1899.|
|8.10||Warranty Deed, dated October 28, 1899, with 4 attached affidavits, for the East ½ of the SW ¼ of sec. 6, Township 22, North of Range 5, east of the 3rd P.M.|
|8.11||Letter, dated January 31, 1907 to John Reed & Co., from S.P. Robinson, attorney.|
|8.12||Letter, dated March 16, 1909, to G. W. Funk, from Hudson Burr & Co.|
|8.13||Letter, dated November 9, 1909, from H.S. Dooley, S.C. Dooley, Law Office.|