Nathan Bond Blair, retired merchant, London, was born in London on the present site of Houston & Burnham's hardware store, June 24, 1824. He is a son of John and Jency Blair, of Scotch and Irish descent. John Blair was an early pioneer of this county, and a moderate land-holder. He was also an early resident of London. He traded his town property for a small farm, on what is known as the "Lower Glade," five miles south of London, to which he removed when our subject was but nine years of age. There the latter's time was occupied in tilling the soil and attending school. When he had secured such an education as the schools of those days afforded, he returned to London, being eighteen years of age. He served a three years' apprenticeship as carpenter and joiner, receiving, during this time, the munificent wages of $3 per month. After serving his apprenticeship, he commenced jour work, being recognized as a skillful carpenter and builder. In 1847, he was married to Mary Penny. To this union was born one son -- Henry C. Mrs. Blair died in the spring of 1849, and the son the following fall. In the fall of 1850, Mr. Blair was again married, to Mrs. E. A. Lamb, who had one son -- Oscar E. They have three children -- Anna M., Amanda and Harry Nathan, all of whom are living. The latter is managing editor of the London Enterprise. At the time of his second union, Mr. Blair was engaged in milling at Blairtown (named after a member of the family who owned large tracts of land near there), but subsequently returned to London and resumed work at his trade. He was engaged at that for the next seven years, employing from ten to fifteen men. He again bought the saw-mill at Blairtown, and operated it for seven years. He then went to Jefferson and engaged in the furniture and undertaking business in connection with his brother, J. C. Blair. After some time, the partnership was dissolved, and Mr. Blair continued the business until the spring of 1877, when be removed his stock to London. He there carried on the same business for two years, and then disposed of his stock and trade to Lohr & Son. Mr. Blair united with the Methodist Episcopal Church when seventeen years of age. He is a charter member of Jefferson Lodge, No. 412 (I O. O. F.). and the Republican party. He is an honest, upright citizen, and highly esteemed by all.

 

From HISTORY OF MADISON COUNTY - W. H. Beers [Chicago, 1883]