Pulaski County

Biography - Charles Skaggs

CHARLES P. SKAGGS. Courteous, painstaking and especially accommodating, Charles P. Skaggs, of Harrisburg, is one of the best clerks the City Court has ever had, and its clerks have always been capable and efficient, the affairs of his office being administered wisely and conscientiously and with complete thoroughness. He was born December 1, 1858, in Marion, "Williamson county, Illinois, a son of Pryor Lee Skaggs, in whose sketch, which appears on another page of this work further parental and ancestral history may be found.

After leaving the public schools of Marion, Charles P. Skaggs attended the State Normal School at Carbondale, and later taught school for a year. He subsequently read law, but instead of being admitted to the bar engaged in the abstracting business, for which he was amply qualified, making a set of abstracts for different counties, including Saline, Hamilton and Gallatin, and for a while worked in the office of abstracts in Jefferson county. Prom there Mr. Skaggs came to Harrisburg, and for fifteen years was cashier of the Bank of Harrisburg, assuming the position when that institution was opened by J. M. Baker. When the bank was merged into the National Bank, Mr. Skaggs retired and began the practice of law with the well-known firm of Thompson & Williford, with which he was associated until being honored for the second time by an election to the office of mayor of the city, he having served in that position while yet cashier in the bank. He filled out his term, and after a brief interim was again chosen to fill the mayor's chair, his previous service having been eminently satisfactory to his fellow-citizens.

In 1900 Mr. Skaggs was elected as a representative to the State Legislature from the district composed of Saline, Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Pulaski counties, and served in the Forty-second General Assembly. He was quite active in the House, and was influential in securing the passage of the law forbidding the wearing of a badge of any Order by any person not a member of said Order, the matter being brought to the front by himself as the chairman of the committee of miscellaneous business. He also secured an appropriation for erecting a monument to that honored pioneer surveyor of Southern Illinois, John Rector, who was buried on Rector creek, in Rector township, he having been killed near the spot of his burial by hostile Indians. The citizens of that place, however, took no interest in the matter, and the effort elapsed, the appropriation being never used. In 1909 Mr. Skaggs was elected to his present position as clerk of the City Court, and is now serving in this position.

On November 29, 1882, Mr. Skaggs was united in marriage with Carrie E. Seimer, who was born, educated and married in Jefferson county, Illinois, and they are the parents of four children, namely: Charles Seimer Skaggs, M. D., who is engaged in the practice of medicine at New Westminster, British Columbia; Frank P., a druggist in Harrisburg, married Myrtle Reynolds, daughter of T. S. Reynolds, postmaster at Harrisburg; Helen H., wife of Harry Wolcott, manager of the Harrisburg Elevator Company; and Will B., engaged in the drug business in Harrisburg.

Fraternally Mr. Skaggs is a thirty-second degree Mason, and has passed all the chairs of the Blue Lodge and the Chapter, and is an active member of Gethsemane Commandery, No. 41, K. T., of Metropole, Illinois; he is also a member and a past noble grand in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and past conductor in the Grand Lodge of Odd Fellows. Mr. and Mrs. Skaggs are members of the Daughters of Re-bekah and Mrs. Skaggs was treasurer for ten years of the Rebekah Assembly of the state. Mr. Skaggs is prominent in the affairs of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and is past exalted ruler of the local lodge of that order. Both he and his wife have attended several of the triennial conclaves of the Knights Templars.

Extracted from A History of Southern Illinois, 1912, Volume 2, page 888-889


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