Summons 1807


From the collection of the St. Clair County Historical Society

This is a summons sent to the sheriff in 1807.

The sheriff at the time was John Hays.  Hays was, interestingly, the only recorded Jewish resident of Illinois before statehood (he came to Cahokia in 1790).
You can also see that they are using an old form.  They crossed out "Northwest Territory," and wrote in, "Indiana Territory."
John Hay and John Hays are two different people.


John Messinger Tax Receipt 1831

The document is a property tax receipt from 1831, signed by Sheriff John D. Hughes
Sheriff's were charged with 'Civil Process' including the collection of taxes.
John Messinger was paying taxes on land that he owned in Monroe and Fayette Counties.
Photos courtesy, William Shannon, Curator, St. Clair County Historical Society


Hot Slop

Hot slop
A byproduct of distilling grain alcohol at 8th and West Main in Belleville in the 1800's was a steamy residue called "hot slop." This January 1872 Belleville Advocate item described what happened when a horse was frightened and struck part of the distilling operation.

From the Gustav Koerner House on Face Book


Superintendant William Voegtle

William Voegtle was Work House Superintendent during the tenures of Sheriffs, Mulcounery,  Mellon and Petri. He served as deputy under Sheriff Cashel.

  • Birth 27 Jul 1877 Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
  • Death 27 Jul 1919 Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
  • Burial Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
  • Plot S 1/2 135 1st Add. Gr 1
  • 149496417_1437326788

Chief Deputy Sheriff Quito B. Heidinger



    Birth 24 Feb 1852 Houston, Texas County, Missouri, USA
  • Death 10 Oct 1910 Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
  • Burial Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
  • Plot Orig., 667, #9

Chief Deputy Sheriff Quito B. Heidinger, one of the best known residents of Belleville, died at his home, on the rock road, Monday morning at 3:55 o'clock, after an illness extending over a period of about one year. He was conscious up to one hour before his death.

Mr. Heidinger served as Chief Deputy Sheriff for almost eight years, serving under former Sheriff G. W. Thompson and under the present Sheriff, Charles Cashel. He would have completed his eighth year in the office on December 1.

Continue reading "Chief Deputy Sheriff Quito B. Heidinger" »

Belleville Guards (1874-1883)


“The Belleville Guards”

In the last years of the nineteenth century Bellville had it's very own militia force. The Belleville Guards often served under the direction of the St. Clair County Sheriff and the Belleville Police Department. Sheriff James W. Hughes and Sheriff Herman G. Weber both activated the guards to stop the violence associated with striking coal mine and railroad workers.

By Jon Stacy

The History of the Belleville Guards began in November 1874; during an unruly coal miners strike. East St. Louis mine owners agreed to pay Union miners four cents per bushel.  Non-Union workers known as “Blacklegs” would work for three cents a bushel & mine owners in Belleville and Freeburg refused to pay four cents and brought in the blacklegs. 

St. Clair County Sheriff James W. Hughes found himself with his hands full throughout the county, with the miners uprising.  On 10 November 1874; Sheriff Hughes, requested a shipment of arms from Springfield, and called for a one hundred man militia to be formed; and it’s volunteers comprising of former Civil War Soldiers.  Once the arms were received the Citizen Militia was sent to patrol the streets of Belleville, to assist the small Belleville Police force, so the Sheriff’s deputies could focus their efforts elsewhere in the county.  The militiamen were deputized during this ordeal and flyers were placed around the city, basically stating: Hostile actions will be met with hostile force.  Needless to report, with an armed deputized militia force patrolling the city, there was no further violence; and the strike subsided.

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