Daniel G. Johnson, Yorkville Pioneer
on His 90th Birthday
Daniel G. Johnson's friends make him a visit and a present.
Seventy years a resident of the Fox River Valley.
Published in the Kendall County Record, November 22, 1905
Edited and compiled by Elmer Dickson
An observer watching the road between Chicago and Detroit during the latter part of August in 1836 might have noted a weary traveler plodding along sometimes behind and sometimes ahead of a team of equally weary horses drawing a heavy load of goods between the two cities. The traveler was a young man. The team of horses were not his property but owned by another traveling the same way. At noon and night they brought up at the same place. Took their wayside meals together and sat together around the campfire and then fell asleep. They continued in this manner until the three hundred miles and more had been traversed.
The journey was completed and at Chicago the way parted for these travelers. A couple of days later, one of them turned his steps toward what is now the village of Oswego in Kendall County. He traveled the distance the same way he did from Detroit to Chicago. Mr. Johnson arrived in Yorkville, which was then a wilderness, on the seventh day of September 1836. When he came to the little clearing on top of the south side bluff in Yorkville, he settled down and there made his future home.
Friday, November 17, Daniel G. Johnson was ninety years old. He mixes daily with his friends, making trips up and down the steep hills. He does his own work about the house. He opens the Kendall County Circuit Court with his stentorian tones of "Hear ye, hear ye." He serves warrants, the same as he has done for half a century or more. When he has completed his present term as constable he will have served in that capacity for 54 consecutive years with the exception of one term in the seventies, when George Ackerman held the office. Mr. Johnson has never, to his knowledge, been absent from a session of the Circuit Court since the county was organized in 1842.
About thirty of his friends remembered his birthday Friday. Stories of the bar were rife among the men folks present. There was talk of the noted lawyers and judges who have practiced at the Kendall County bar. Stories of how the late Judge Parks used to sit on the judicial bench and tear up paper and whittle pencils, till "Uncle Dan" broke him of the extravagant habit. There were other tales of long ago remembrances of some of those present. An hour or so was spent in telling old stories over again then the party broke up, leaving the venerable farmer, liveryman, court bailiff, and constable happy in the appreciation of his friend's remembrance.