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Brief Reports of the Orphans

Joseph Ambrose Ackerman was sent to Illinois in 1878 at the age of 13 and he first appeared in the Illinois Census in 1880, when he lived with the Thomas Hopper family near Yatesville, Morgan County. He was listed in the census that year as "a waif from New York."

He did not appear again in the census until 1910, when he was married to Martha J. Gillespie. In his marriage license he noted the names of his parents: Joseph Ackerman and Mary Bryan. He owned his own farm near Ogden, Champaign County and provided a home for his father in law and brother in law. They had one daughter, Lena. In the 1940 census it was noted that he had a 8th grade education. He died November 30, 1947 and was buried in the GAR cemetery near Ogden.

Joseph did not write a letter to the asylum, but he was commended in 1881 for his good behavior in the Annual Report.

Martin Armstrong was sent West in 1878 at the age of 8. He may have been sent with his brother Peter, whose name was not recorded in the 1881 report. Martin first appeared in the Illinois records in 1880, when he was listed as the adopted son of I G Lane. Lane was a farmer near Essex in Kankakee County. A Hungarian teen named Florian Biche was also working on the farm. Martin continued to live in the Essex area and married Tempie or Tempa Myers in 1896. He gave his fathers name as Thomas when he filled out the marriage license, but did not know the name of his mother. In 1910 Martin and Tempie owned their own farm and had five children: Lester, Arthur, William, Theodore and Paul. In 1920 they had two additional children: Alvin and Harold. Martin died July 3, 1929 in Beauville, Grundy County. The photo below is of the Martin Armstrong family.

Peter Armstrong first appears in the Illinois census in 1880 in the

household of James Barnett of Otto, Kankakee County. He is noted as being a "bond boy." He later married Martha and had three daughters and one or two sons before dying on April 17, 1916 due to injuries received in a farming accident in Iowa. They had been living in Doniphan, Kansas since 1900, along with Peter's younger brother, William. Although the obituary says his brother was buried in the same cemetery, no record of William's grave is on Find A Grave.

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