MICHAEL ROCHE, farmer, P. O. Villa Ridge, was born in Ireland in 1822, to Richard and Margaret (Jones) Roche, both born in Ireland. When our subject was sixteen years of age, they came to the United States, and came to Pulaski County, October, 1839. On the 29th of October of the same year they both died, and are buried in the Shiloh burying grounds. Our subject did not come to this county with his parents, but remained in New York for some years, and while there served an apprenticeship in learning the molder's business. In 1848 he came to Illinois, and taught school the first winter at the old Shiloh log church. The next summer, he farmed, but in the winter went to St. Louis and worked at his trade, then came back to this county and finished two miles for I. C. R. R. Since that, he has been engaged in farming, and has been very successful. He now owns 160 acres of land, about 100 being in cultivation. He was married in Albany, N. Y., July 26, 1847, to Ellen Murphy. They have three children living — Margaret, now Mrs. Joe Miller; James, at home, and Anna, attending school at Notre Dame. Our subject is a member of the Catholic Church, and got Father McCabe, the first priest, to come to Southern Illinois.
Extracted 02 Nov 2014 by Norma Hass from 1883 History of Alexander, Union and Pulaski Counties, Illinois, Part V - Biographical Sketches, page 295.