ISAAC ROBERT TUTTLE. Clearly defined purpose and consecutive effort in the affairs of life will inevitably result in the attaining of a due measure of success, but in following out the career of one who has attained success by his own efforts there comes into view the intrinsic individuality which made such accomplishment possible, and thus there is granted an objective incentive and inspiration while at the same time there is enkindled a feeling of respect and admiration. The qualities which have made Isaac Robert Tuttle, the efficient circuit clerk and recorder, one of the prominent and successful men of Harrisburg, Saline county, have also brought him the esteem of his fellow townsmen, for his career has been one of well-directed energy, strong determination and honorable methods.
Mr. Tuttle was born three miles north-west of Harrisburg, July 8, 1861, the son of James A. and Eliza Tuttle. He was a native of
Nashville, Tennessee, and came to Illinois about the year 1848. So well was he impressed with the resources and advantages of the section that four years later he brought his parents here also and in this neighborhood they passed the remainder of their lives. James A. Tuttle bought two hundred acres of cheap land, which he improved and successfully cultivated. His family was in humble circumstances, and upon his arrival here he had but fifteen cents in his pocket, when he crossed the river at Shawneetown. In 1852 he went back to his old home in Tennessee, driving two yoke of oxen, and when he came again to Illinois he was accompanied by his parents, four brothers and a sister to share with him the riches of the land of promise. Another sister and her husband, Walter Carter, also came, walking all the way and driving their cattle before them. One brother, Peter Tuttle, had been the first of all having preceded James A. by five or six years. The four brothers mentioned as coming later were Jessup, Berry, Herbert and William. A sister, Martha, who was single at the time of the exodus, and another sister, Betsey, subsequently became the wife of Joseph Morris. All remained, and when the Civil war cast its pall over the Nation four of the brothers enlisted and served through the war, William and Jessup being prison at Andersonville and remaining within its frightful walls until their health was impaired. Jessup is deceased and William is now the only survivor of the family. James A. Tuttle took as his wife Eliza Fleming, daughter of Beverly Fleming, also of Tennessee, and they began married life on a tract of land that he bought three miles north-west of Harrisburg. This was on the Mt. Vernon and Elizabeth road, the first road to be laid to the northwest. On this homestead he passed to the life eternal, on October 30, 1887, aged fifty-seven years. His widow is now living with I. R. Tuttle. These worthy people, who met the new conditons so gravely, reared a family of thirteen children, seven to maturity. They follow: William H.; James K., formerly a very successful teacher in Saline county, now in St Louis; Isaac Robert; Sarah L., the wife of Thomas Stricklin, of Dennison, Illinois; Catherine, who married William P. Fowler, of Galatia, Illinois; Patsy, wife of H. P. Dorris, of Cameron, Oklahoma; and Charriet, who married Marion Travisted, of Crabb Orchard, Illinois.
Isaac Robert Tuttle remained on his father's farm until the age of eighteen. From the age of eight to twelve he had almost no schooling and when nineteen he could not yet write. His father was anxious to make money and he and his sons cleared two hundred acres from the virgin forest. He was a very progressive man and was one of the first in his neighborhood to become the possessor of a mower, binder and other implements. Although he kept the boys busy, he was very kind to them and allowed each one to have a share of each year's crop, and when Isaac Robert was nineteen he had a bank account of four hundred dollars. The next fall he got a fine amount of wheat from eighty-five acres and he decided to make some investment, such as live stock and real estate. Isaac R. concluded to buy calves, but when his father asked him what the average cost of the animals would be he could not figure it out, his education being so deficient, and he was so chagrined that he entered school the very next Monday. He later attended normal school at Carmi, White county, and was graduated with the class of 1881. He was a natural student and made fine progress and was gladly accepted as a teacher in Williamson county. He taught for four terms in the same district. He also taught some time in Saline county. In short.
he divided his time between farming and teaching until 1898. He then engaged as a traveling salesman for eighteen months, his territory being in Nebraska and Kansas. In 1900 he received the appointment as deputy circuit clerk under E. M. Stricklin and in 1904 he succeeded that gentleman to the main office and also assumed the duties of recorder. In 1908 he received the compliment of re-election and he is devoting himself in whole-souled fashion to the office and its duties, and, it is needless to say, has given the utmost satisfaction. Mr. Tuttle is one of the most enthusiastic of Republicans and is active in all party work.
In the year 1885 Mr. Tuttle was united in marriage to Mary E. Parks, of Williamson county. There are two promising sons in the family. Ural is a druggist and is married to Madge I. Webber. Oral P., a graduate in law from Northwestern University, was admitted to the bar at Springfield. He was deputy circuit clerk from 1904 to 1908, and is now a law partner with M. S. Whitley, in his civil and criminal practice. The senior Mr. Tuttle has been an Odd Fellow since 1902 and in that time has passed all the chairs. Harrisburg looks upon him as a good and altruistic citizen.