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Knox College Library
Special Collections & Archives

2 E. South St.
Galesburg, IL 61401
309-341-7392
archives@knox.edu

Path: Library home > Special Collections & Archives > Local History > Jerusha and Eli Farnham

Jerusha Brewster Loomis Farnham
(1806 - 1872)

Jerusha Farnham Jerusha Farnham was a member of the original colony of Galesburg settlers and author of the diary that became Log City Days. As a newly married couple, Jerusha and Eli Farnham set out for the prarie. The early settlers established themselves in a community some distance from the site of the town limits of Galesburg. They called the settlement Log City and the conditions there were spartan. Log cabins were not permitted inside the town limits and Log City was where many of the townspeople lived before their frame houses in town were completed.

At the time of the college and town centennial celebration in 1937, Jerusha's diary was transcribed and printed in a volume that included drawing of the log cabin settlement by Samuel Holyoke. His reminiscences of those early days were added as well and the volume, now available in the Special Collections and through interlibrary loan, was published.

Log City Days - Two Narratives on the Settlement of Galesburg, Illinois, Knox College, Galesburg, IL, 1937.

View a page of the original diary of Jerusha Loomis Brewster Farnham

The Loomis-Farnham Collection

Eli Farnham
(1803 - 1882)

Eli Farnham The husband of Jerusha Brewster was born in Pompey, New York, and was among those settlers who came West with seriousness of purpose and devotion to education. He was a trustee of the college from 1845 until his death and also the first school teacher in Galesburg. The following is a description of the school given in 1925 by a Galesburg native and teacher, Mary Ellen Ferris Gettemy:

"His school in his own house on Farnham street was no ordinary school; it was a home where those who lived too far away to go and come daily were cared for from Monday morning until Friday night. Possible (sic) some were mothered by dear Mrs. Farnham during the entire term; if so they were fortunate indeed in falling into the hands of such a sweer and gentile nature."