Edward Maxson Whitford, the second of six children born to Catherine Coon and Asa Maxson Whitford, was born at Adams Center, N. Y., March 23, 1849, and died at Farina, Ill., Friday, December 14, 1928, at the age of 79 years, 8 months and 21 days. Of his father's family one brother, Adelbert, of Milton Junction, Wis., survives. When a young man, he joined the Seventh Day Baptist Church of Adams Center, N. Y., and upon his removal to Farina, he united with the church of that faith, of which he was a member at the time of his death.
He came to Farina in 1867, engaging in agricultural pursuits which he followed until failing health forced him to retire from active service.
In 1871 he was married to Josephine Louise Burdick, who passed away August 10, 1906. Ten children were born to this union; three, Walter, Oliver and Flora C., preceding him in death. The surviving children are Mrs. E. G. Crosley, Mrs. C. A. Davis, O. J. Whitford, A. M. Whitford, and E. L. Whitford, all of Farina; Mrs. Mary Ware of St. Andrews, Fla., and Mrs. Lois Torres of Ann Arbor, Mich.
In 1910 he was married to Mrs. Helen Irish at Magnolia, Miss., who also survives him.
During his active life at Farina Mr. Whitford was known as one of our progressive farmers. He probably brought the first pure bred Shorthorn cattle to this community. He was a pioneer in the strawberry business, probably the first to use, and the inventor of, the present ticket system as a record of payment. He became interested in fruit trees, and for years he has been known as the propagator of the Whitford Orchard. It is at this orchard that one of the few chestnut groves of the Middle West can be found. He was one of the first of this locality to establish the ten hour day for the farm, and was an advocate of a fair wage for employees.
In a public way, he served for several years as director of the Gove school district. He helped organize the Fruit Growers Association, and the Building and Loan Association of Farina, and served several terms as mayor and member of the village board. During his life he did much for the advancement of his profession, and has left the community the better for his living in it. He was well known throughout Southern Illinois, as an authority on matters pertaining to fruit and nut production, and among his more intimate associates, as a four-square man. He has passed on, but his works will follow after him.
Aside from the members of the family already mentioned, there are fifteen grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and many other relatives and friends who revere his memory.
Funeral services were conducted at the home Sunday afternoon, at two o'clock, by pastor C. L. Hill, and burial was made in the Farina cemetery. C. L. H.