DURBIN – Joseph Pius “Squire” Durbin was born Jan. 9, 1800 in KY, the son of Joseph Sr. and Sarah Elizabeth Logsdon Durbin. Joseph came to Christian County, IL with his parents and the James M. Logsdon and Nathan Painter families. These families had arrived in Baltimore, Maryland in the 1700’s from Ireland and England seeking religious freedom. In the 1800’s, they migrated together to the western frontier of KY. One of their sons, Father Elisha John Durbin, was assigned the Kentucky territory. Father Durbin rode half a million miles on horseback to attend his flock and build 15 churches in the wilderness.

The Durbin-Logsdon families established the first settlement on Bear Creek in 1829. They cleared forest, plowed, planted and harvested, built cabins, barns and fences and raised their families. Joseph Durbin had married Nancy Elizabeth Logsdon in 1820, the daughter of William Logsdon, Sr. They were parents of 14 children. Joseph built a dam on Bear Creek, a grist mill and a still. He was elected Justice of the Peace and was a magistrate for many years. Squire Joseph died Oct. 8, 1875. Nancy died Dec. 8, 1879. They are buried at St. Joseph’s-Durbin Cemetery at Palmer.

John VanBuren Durbin, their son, was born Dec. 17, 1824 in KY. He married Elizabeth McKinzie, daughter of Aaron McKinzie, Oct. 13, 1849. The couple farmed near Owaneco and had 14 children. John Vincent Durbin, their son, was born Sep. 11, 1867 near Palmer. He married Sarah Jane Durbin of Lebanon, MO on 19 May 1891, the daughter of Josephus and Margaret Logsdon Durbin. In 1838, Josephus Durbin and Elizabeth Simpson were the first couple to take out a license to marry in Christian County. After Elizabeth’s death, Josephus married Margaret Logsdon Burtle, They had two children, William Thomas and Sarah Jane. Margaret is buried in the Simpson-Resler Cemetery near Clarksdale. Josephus and his third wife, Sarah Hinkle Burtle Painter moved to Lebanon, MO to homestead. Sarah was 17 when she married John Vincent Durbin in 1891 and returned to Christian Co. to farm and raise a family. Josephus and his family returned in 1900. Josephus was a woodcutter and farmer and was known to be an honest man. He once walked to Missouri to see his brother , Leonard. Josephus died Jan. 23, 1903 and is buried at St. Joseph-Durbin Cemetery at Palmer.

Sarah Jane and John Vincent Durbin were farmers. They attended St. Mary Catholic Church. Their children are: Margaret Wicker, Mary Durbin, Malinda Ketchum, Goldie Waterman, Fern Cocagne, Hazel Campbell Heinz, Ruth Durbin, James Thomas, John Joseph and William Andrew Durbin. John V. played the fiddle at family gatherings and on a cold Thanksgiving in 1936, Sarah cooked a large goose when her 10 children, spouses and grandchildren were home for the occasion. John Vincent died 24 Jan 1941 and Sarah died 29 Apr 1943. They are buried at Oak Hill Cemetery in Taylorville.

Shirley Waterman Harris, Springfield, Illinois


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