Daniel & Esther Platt
Sketch of the Life and Death of Daniel Platt
Published in the Kendall County Record, February 21, 1894
Edited and compiled by Elmer Dickson
Although it was very generally known that Mr. Daniel Platt was a very sick man, and though his demise was daily expected, the news as told with bated breath was a shock to his host of friends and acquaintances. Had he lived one month longer he would have been 84 years old. Eighty-four years of active, busy, life. If ever the saying "He died with the harness on" can be applied to any man, it can be applied to him. At the age of 21 years Mr. Platt was married to Miss Esther Ricketson, with whom he has lived 63 years of happy married life.
Mr. Platt's ancestors were the founders of Plattsburg, NY, from which place Daniel and Esther immigrated to the wilds of Illinois in 1833. They arrived at Plainfield, IL, where they hired out for a year to the hotelkeeper of the town. Mrs. Platt in the kitchen. Mr. Platt man of all work. At the end of the year, having learned the art of "caring for the inner man," they resolved to push farther west and do for themselves. Ten miles out they found the spot that pleased them best, where they have lived ever since. Their new home was on the stage route of Frink and Walker from Chicago to Ottawa. Here they built a large log house for the double purpose of a dwelling and stage station. The place was noted for its good cheer the whole length of the route, for Mrs. Platt was noted as the best cook and Mr. Platt for the most genial and accommodating landlord on the road. Many and many weary teamster has added a few extra miles to his journey in order to reach "Platt's." In those early days Mr. Platt was well and favorably known from Chicago to St. Louis. He was a warm and intimate friend of Judges Caton and Dickey.
Mr. Platt was a man of sterling integrity and set principles. He evidently adopted the David Crockett idea, "Be sure you are right, then go ahead." Being a frugal and industrious man, Mr. Platt amassed a snug fortune, which he generously lavished on his children as he saw their need. In their union, Mr. and Mrs. Platt were blessed with five children. Two of whom have joined the silent majority, A. L. (Albert L.) and Elizabeth. Three are left to mourn a loving father's death, J. D. (Junior Daniel), Levi and Mrs. George Tremaine, all of Plattville. A. L. was a brave Union soldier. Among other battles he was in the thickest of the fight at Missionary Ridge and Lookout Mountain, and was among the first to arrive at the top of Lookout Mountain. Poor Al! He was a bright boy.
Along in the early 1840s Mr. Platt built a large and commodious stone house to take the place of the primitive log house. The first election in Franklin precinct was held in Mr. Platt's house in the fall of 1848. About that time Plattville post office was established with Mr. Platt as postmaster. Ever since then the office has been in the Platt family.
The day of his funeral was a very inclement day, almost a ceaseless rain, yet the people of the surrounding country turned out en masse to pay their last respects to the dead pioneer, whom we all trust is in heaven. Signed, Amigo
"The Pioneers Are Going"
Kendall County Record, February 21, 1894
Died, February 7, 1894, Daniel Platt aged 83 years, 11 months, 4 days.
Died, February 17, 1894, Mrs. Esther Platt, wife of Daniel Platt, aged 77 years, 11 months, 4 days.
In life they were one for more than 62 years. In death they are not divided.
On another page is a sketch of the late Daniel Platt and his estimable wife, written by an old friend of the family. When it was put in type on Saturday last we did not know that the spirit of the aged widow was then wending its way to be with the loved one gone before. Only ten days a widow, then the reunion.
Mrs. Platt was one of the most honored attendants at our old Settler's reunions. She was conspicuous by her motherly manner, her keen, bright eyes and her evident enjoyment of meeting so many old companions. She was affable and social and had a host of friends. Her death so soon following that of her husband was not looked for, but doubtless the separation was more than she could bear.
We have these reminiscences to add to those of "Amigo." When Mr. and Mrs. Platt hired out in Plainfield in 1833, they received $25 a month for their services. The following March, Mr. Platt bought a claim of a man on section one, Lisbon Township, the called Aux Sable Springs, for $75. There was a board cabin ten feet square on the place, but Mr. Platt built a new house and took down the board one to make a floor. This is where Plattville now is, and where the worthy couple lived until death came.
When Mr. Platt came here he got his mail in Chicago and paid 25 cents postage for a letter. Soon after his arrival he paid $10 for a cow and had three dollars in money left. These people have passed away, but they will always live in the history of Kendall County. They were noted for their probity and thrift. They rest in peace.