HAMPTON S. BURGESS.
Standing prominent among the leading meinbers of the legal fraternity of Wayne county is Hampton S. Burgess, of Fairfield, now serving as state’s attorney. A native of Wayne county, his birth occurred on a farm in Big Mound township, December 5, 1866.
His father, the late John II. Burgess, was born, in 1826, in Tennessee, where he was reared. He migrated to Illinois in 1848, and when the Civil war broke out he offered his services to his country and served for two years in Company D, Fifth Illinois Volunteer Cavalry. Returning home he resumed his agricultural labors, and was thenceforth engaged in farming until his death, which occurred in 1897. To him and his wife, whose maiden name was Elizabeth Williams, eight children were born, as follows: William, living in Republic, Missouri; Eliza, deceased; Mary, deceiised; Lucy, deceased; Kauzadia, living near Fairfield, Illinois; Hampton S. of this brief personal review; Anna, deceased; and Oscar, also deceased.
Brought up on a farm, Hampton S. Burgess acquired his first knowledge of books in the rural schools of Wayne county, Illinois, later attending the old Hayward College in Fairfield. On attaining his majority he secured a position as a teacher in a country school, and subsequently taught school for nine consecutive years in Wayne county. While thus engaged Mr. Burgess spent his leisure moments in studying law, and in 1895 he was admitted to the bar. Beginning the practice of his profession in the fall of 1897, he continued alone until July 1, 1906, when he entered into partnership with Judge Cooper. Evincing a genuine interest in local affairs, Mr. Burgess has filled many public offices of importance and responsibility, in each serving with credit to himself and to the honor of his constituents. For one year he was chairman of the county board of supervisors; from 1892 until 1894 he was township assessor; was supervisor from 1896 until 1900; elected city attorney in 1900, he served in that capacity one term; and in the fall of 1908 he was elected state’s attorney on the Democratic ticket for a term of four years, and is now serving the people most acceptably.
On December 27, 1893, Mr. Burgess was united in marriage with Lillie Harlan, a daughter of William D. Harlan, and to them seven children have been born, namely: Oscar, Jessie, Vivian, Anna, Hampton, John and James. Fraternally Mr. Burgess belongs to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, to the Tribe of Ben Hur and to the Improved Order of Red Men.