Watson came to Illinois in his early childhood with his parents. He obtained his education from the best public schools in the county and then worked on a farm until he was twenty years old, at which time he took up the tinner's trade. In 1862 he enlisted as a private in Company A of the 92nd Illinois regiment. He was honorably discharged in June, 1865 and returned home with a most creditable military record. He participated in the battle of Chickamauga and several skirmishes.
Once more taking up pursuits of civil life, Watson embarked in business as a merchant and was thus continuously connected with mercantile interests until 1902. He began business at Winslow on a small scale, but soon built up the enterprise until it became one of large and profitable proportions. As he prospered he also established sites in other towns, and at Martintown, conducted business in partnership with William Edwards. His commercial integrity was above question and he became widely recognized as one of the enterprising and prosperous businessmen of the country. After 1902, Watson served Winslow as Justice of the Peace where his descisions were ever fair and impartial.
Watson married Amelia Gage in 1864. She bore him six children and died in 1902. He married again in 1906 to Eunice Young.
Watson was ever a most staunch adherent of the Republican party, believing that its principals were most conducive to good government. He voted for every Republican president since Lincoln's first election. He belonged to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, in which he held all offices, and he was a devoted member of the Methodist church.
Submitted by: Steve Higley on 4⁄9⁄98