A History of Clinton County would be incomplete without a biographical sketch of Zophar CASE. The present Case family are the direct descendants of four brothers, who were Hollanders. Their names were Theopolus, Christopher, Reuben and Butler Case. They emigrated to America in 1740, and settled on Long Island, and subsequently removed to New Jersey, where Butler, the grandfather of Zophar, married a Miss Carns, who was of Irish descent. By this union there was a large offspring, among whom was Messhack, the father of the subject of the present sketch. The family afterward removed to western Pennsylvania, and settled in the forks of the Youghiogheny river. There Messhack married Magdalena ECKSTEIN, a native of Winchester, Virginia. In the year 1800, he moved to Trumbull county, Ohio, and died there in 1841. There were seven children by that marriage. Their names were Elizabeth, Leonard, Catherine, Mary, Reuben, Sarah, and Zophar. The latter is the youngest and only survivor of the family of Messhack and Magdalena Case. Leonard, the eldest brother, became a resident of Cleveland, Ohio, and there amassed a large amount of property. He died in 1866, leaving it to his heirs, the last of whom was Leonard Case, Jr., who died in 1880. The property then descended to the remaining heirs, of whom Zophar was one. Leonard Case, Jr., in his life, endowed the Case School of Applied Sciences, of Cleveland, Ohio, with one and a half million dollars; also made other munificent donations to charitable institutions.

Zophar Case was born in the town of Warren, Trumbull county, Ohio, January 5th, 1804. He remained in Ohio until 1830, when he came west, and settled in Vandalia, in Fayette county, Ill.

On the 4th of June, 1833, he came to Carlyle, Clinton county, and here he remained until August, 1881, when he removed to Cleveland, Ohio. Mr. Case was for many years prominently identified with Clinton county, and held nearly all the offices at one time or another in the county. During the Mexican war, he enlisted for the service, and was transferred to the quartermaster’s department, and served in that capacity first in the army under Gen. TAYLOR, and afterwards with Gen. SCOTT. In the late war he served over two years in the same capacity. In 1852 he was admitted to the practice of law in the State of Illinois.

In addition to Mr. Case’s official life, he was for many years connected with the journalism of the county, and may be regarded as the pioneer journalist of Clinton county. As a writer of political articles, he was far above the average, and the journals that he conducted wielded great influence in this Congressional district. On the 20th of June, 1833, he was united in marriage to Miss Mary Ellen HALSTEAD, of Lexington, Kentucky. By that union there were thirteen children, nine of whom are yet living. Politically, Mr. Case was originally an old-line Whig until 1856, when he voted for James BUCHANAN, the Democratic nominee for President, and from that time to the present has been an unswerving Democrat.

Hardin Case, one of Mr. Case’s sons, was born in Carlyle, December 13th, 1844. He was educated in the public schools and at the Webster school in St. Louis. He learned the printer’s trade in the office of the Calumet of Peace, of which his father was editor and proprietor, and afterwards worked in the office of the Reveille. On the 1st of January, 1868, he commenced the publication of a newspaper, and soon after became part owner in the Constitution and Union, and afterwards sole proprietor and editor, and continued in the business until July 4th, 1881, when he sold out. As a newspaper manager and editor, Mr. Case was a success. It is partly due to his efforts that the Democratic party in Clinton county increased from a minority to a handsome majority, and now it is regarded as one of the certain Democratic counties in the State. From 1862 to 1863, he was connected with the quartermaster’s department at Murfreesboro, Tenn. He returned to Carlyle, where he was appointed agent and telegraph operator for the O. and M. Railroad. In the spring of 1864, he entered the military telegraph service, and was stationed in south-western Missouri and north-western Arkansas, at Fayetteville, and part of the time at the arsenal in St. Louis. He continued in the service until after the war closed, and was the last operator in the United States service mustered out in the West.

Source: History of Marion and Clinton Counties, Illinois, 1881, Brink, McDonough & Co., Philadelphia

Submitted by: Pamela Safriet

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Database table Bio_Index modified: 5 Nov 2016
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