Webster, Illinois

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Webster, Illinois
Unincorporated community
Country United States
State Illinois
County Hancock County
Township Fountain Green
Elevation 623 ft (190 m)
Coordinates 40°27′59″N 91°00′02″W / 40.46639°N 91.00056°W / 40.46639; -91.00056Coordinates: 40°27′59″N 91°00′02″W / 40.46639°N 91.00056°W / 40.46639; -91.00056
Timezone CST (UTC-6)
 - summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
Postal code 62321
Area code 217
Location of Webster within Illinois

Webster is an unincorporated community in Fountain Green Township, Hancock County, Illinois, United States. It was originally known as Ramus and was settled under the direction of Joel H. Johnson.

The settlement here was largely due to the presence of Ute and Sarah Perkins who had moved to the area in 1826. This area became known as Perkins Settlement. A short time later a group of Catholic families moved from Kentucky, led by Mordecai Lincoln. In 1838 Lincoln established the Catholic Church of St. Simon the Apostle in the area, which was supervised by the diocese of St. Louis.[2]

The Perkins family joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1839, responding to the teaching of Joel H. Johnson. The Perkins became the center of the community. The Perkinses were so central to the community that at times it was called Perkins Settlement.[3]

Johnson moved to the area in February 1840. In July 1840 a stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized giving the place the name of Ramus. Some of the Perkins land was purchased, and set out into a town of 24 blocks. Johnson set about promoting the town to Mormons elsewhere as a worthwhile place with plenty of surrounding agicultural land and a growing settlement.[4] In 1841 nine blocks were added to the town.

In about 1841, the Latter Day Saints built a meetinghouse in Ramus, which may have been the first meetinghouse built by Latter Day Saints.[5] Other sources call this building a schoolhouse.[6] Another notable early resident of Ramus was Benjamin F. Johnson who operated a store there.

By the end of 1842 there were between 500 and 600 people in Ramus.

In 1843 the town was renamed Macedonia when it was formally incorporated by the Illinois legislature. By 1845 the population had declined to 380.

Doctrine and Covenants sections 130 and 131 are gathered from remarks given by Joseph Smith at Ramus.

Today the Webster Community Church, built in 1897, occupies the site of this early Latter Day Saint meetinghouse.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "USGS detail on Newtown". Retrieved 2007-10-21.
  2. ^ Susan Sessions Rugh "Conflict in the Countryside: The Mormon Settlement in Macedonia, Illinois" in Brigham Young University Studies Vol. 31, no. 1 (Winter 1991) p. 152
  3. ^ Webster Mormon Monument
  4. ^ [Susan Session Rugh. "Conflict in the Countryside: The Mormon Settlement at Macedonia, Illinois" in Brigham Young University Studies, Vol. 32, no. 1, p. 153
  5. ^ Donald Q. Cannon, "Spokes on the Wheel: Early Latter-day Saint Settlements in Hancock County, Illinois", Ensign, February 1986.
  6. ^ Rugh, p. 153

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