top of page

The Hayes

            Several Hayes lived in Bloomington, and there is no indication which lived at Main and Olive, except that the obituary of Amelia Hayes Walton indicated that she lived for many years at the family homestead on Main Street.


            Ruth Jones Hayes, the widow of Amasa Hayes, a Presbyterian minister, brought her family of one son and six daughters to Bloomington after the death of her husband.


            Ruth’s son, Samuel Hayes was found dead in the woods where he had been felling trees. He had married Gerusha Caudery in 1837, but they had no children.  


            Three of the daughters of Ruth Jones Hayes married and made their homes in McLean County for many years and had homes near one another during their later years. Amelia was married to a farmer and saddler John T. Walton. They had two daughters, but only one, Helen (1844 – 1928) married and had children of her own. Helen and Eugenia Walton were both school teachers and attended ISNU and Wesleyan, respectively. 


            Jeannette Hayes married Lyman Ferre, the carriage maker and had three children, two of whom did not live to be adults. Her remaining daughter married and lived in Ohio.


            Helen Hayes married William Richardson, a dry goods merchant and pork packer. William Richardson died a suicide when he slit his own throat. They had no surviving children. They did adopt Florence Lohfink, a two year old given up by her widowed mother.


             Florence attended ISNU and was a schoolteacher. She died of malarial fever in 1882.  In the last years of their lives, these three sisters lived very close to one another.


            The fourth Hayes sister to live in Bloomington was Adeline, who married Oliver Ellsworth. The Ellsworths had no children.


            The second family of Hayes was headed by Silas Hayes and Eliza Roab. Silas Hayes came to Bloomington in 1834 or 1840 from Connecticut. He was a wagon maker and two of his sons were carriage makers in Bloomington – George and Charles.


            George was a 1st Lieutenant in the 94th Illinois Infantry, Co. K and Charles was a private in Co K of the 8th Illinois Infantry. Burt and Daisy Hayes were the children of George Hayes. Burt was a street car conductor and Daisy was a nurse. Daisy married Jacob Arnold in 1903 but never had any children. Her husband committed suicide in 1931 under mysterious circumstances, there being no financial difficulties or ill health involved.


            Charles Hayes had six children, but none of his family remains in McLean County.  Adra Hayes married Frederick  Knorr and has an especially beautiful monument in Evergreen Cemetery (Section G). Josephine Hayes married J W Brown, who was a postmaster and merchant in Bloomington. During the Civil War he was a cavalryman in the 3rd Illinois Cavalry.


            Neither of these interesting families have descendants currently living in McLean County.

bottom of page