Benjamin Franklin Harrington
Will Be Missed by Kendall County
Soldier, Lawyer, Patriot Succumbs at Yorkville Home. Has Been Leading Spirit of the Grand Army for Several Years.
Was Widely Known as a Lawyer. Death Follows General Breakdown.
Kendall County Record, January 23, 1924.
At the hardest hour of a soldier's life, the low-hour of 3:30 in the morning, when night is answering the call for the glint of the morning sun and the sentry has his most arduous task in keeping awake, Benjamin F. Herrington answered the call of the Great Commander, reporting to duty at a higher court. The death was not unexpected. Mr. Herrington had been in failing health since last fall and, only after a strenuous fight against nature, was forced to his bed by the ravages of pneumonia. The illness was augmented by a general breakdown and, since Christmas time, Mr. Herrington's life has been despaired of.
There probably was not a more widely known man in Kendall County or in the community than Mr. Herrington. As an attorney he was always active. As a veteran of the Civil War he was always at the forefront of Grand Army affairs. As a searcher for the betterment of humanity he worked for prohibition and law observant causes. In the national organization of the Grand Army of the Republic, Mr. Herrington has served on the staff of the Commander in Chief. He has been equally honored by the state and local bodies. During the last years of the Yorkville Post, G. A. R., when the ranks have thinned and interest was waning, this patriotic citizen has kept the old soldiers together and has officiated at funerals when it was difficult to get a representative band together.
As a member of the legal fraternity Mr. Herrington has served on many committees of the state, district, and county bar associations. He has held an enviable place among those who drew up briefs for the higher courts. He has fought for his clients to the last gasp.
As a citizen, Mr. Herrington was always in the leading van for law enforcement. He has fought for many measures in the local council and carried many measures which had been thought to be impassible. Many campaigns which were started by Mr. Herrington were looked upon as futile by the initiated but, after a little work, they were carried out. In the death of this gentleman, Yorkville has lost a loyal supporter of the government. He was a real American citizen who had the best of the country at heart.
Benjamin Franklin Herrington was born in the country north of Detroit, Michigan October 15, 1848. While a youngster he moved with his family to Detroit where he gained the rudimentary education from the schools in that city. When the war broke out he was too young to enlist. It was his pleasure to tell of the start in military life as a drummer boy at the age of 13 years. As soon as his enlistment as a regular soldier could be completed he joined the Fourth Michigan Infantry Regiment as a soldier at the age of fifteen years. He was later made a corporal in Company D, 11th Michigan Infantry and served until his discharge July 24, 1865. After leaving the army at Chattanooga, Tennessee, Mr. Herrington entered the employ of the Charleston & Memphis Railroad as a telegrapher and dispatcher. He graduated from the southern roads to New York and there became a "Receiver" on one of the transcontinental lines. His studies were in the legal line and he was admitted to the New York state bar in 1873. He then came to Illinois where he served as a telegrapher in various places finally settling in Yorkville. At this place he has made his home for the past near-half century, taking up his residence here in 1876.
Surviving members of the family are the widow, Mrs. Georgia (Squires) Herrington; a daughter, Mrs. J. Robert Burks of Yorkville; a son George S. Herrington of Chicago; and the grandchildren. The last rites over the remains of Mr. Herrington were held at the late home, the Rev. Mr. Ake of the Yorkville Methodist Church, having charge. Two duets were sung by Miss Gates and Mr. Ake and the pastor spoke feelingly of the former soldier-lawyer. Interment was in the West Aurora Cemetery.