James Lemen Monument

Pictures and documents submitted by Janet Flynn.


Lemen monument after its June 2004 marking by the NSDAR.


Lemen Monument,  (#17 on the cemetery map). The monument dedicated to Revolutionary War soldier and anti-slavery preacher, Rev. James Lemen, Sr., is located off Route 3, in a field behind the Nobbe Equipment Company, close to the Lemen home built in the late 1700's.  This was the first brick building built in Illinois.  It was indexed by Al Mueller & Al Hartman on May 15, 1969.  The property is now (2005) owned by Bernie & Sharon Vogt.


Click here to view James Lemen Funeral Sermon..


The procession to the monument at the dedication - Lemen home/fort in background. Revolutionary War re-enactors present at the dedication.

Click photos for larger view.

Revolutionary War re-enactors present at the dedication.


1909 dedication of the Lemen monument from The Waterloo Republican (3,000 attendees, speech by Wm. Jennings Bryant)

The Waterloo Republican, Waterloo, ILL., Wednesday, September 8, 1909:


Three Thousand People Attend the Ceremonies at Cemetery

Special to The Republican

            Lemen Station, Sep. 2 Probably the largest gathering ever witnessed in Monroe county gathered here today to witness the unveiling of the Lemen monument.

            The day had been proclaimed a holiday by the mayors of Waterloo, Columbia and Red Bud, and there were large delegations from every locality.

            The day was ideal except for the dust.  The warm spell skipped a cog, * and just as the people began to assemble at the ground old Sol slipped behind clouds and there remained during the day.

            The trains were crowded to standing room only, and for the accommodation of the public were stopped at the cemetery site.

            Hundreds of vehicles were driven to the grounds from every where.

            Dr. J. A. Leavitt, president of Ewing college, was president of the day.

            After the arrival a procession was formed, led by the Bethel Band and the Grand Army, and the address of welcome was delivered on behalf of the city and county by City Clerk J. W. Jackson.

            The address was a splendid effort which paid glowing tribute to the pioneer whose memory this occasion was to honor.

            The response was by Dr. Twing of Alton.

            In the absence of Gov. Folk the biographical sketch of James Lemen was read by Rev. Colbert of Bethel church.

            The monument was then unveiled by Misses Cleda Lemen of O'Fallon and Pattie Bowler of Collinsville.

            The monument is a large affair of Vermont granite, 12 feet high, and of good proportions, and cost over $800.

            The audience then retired to the grove where a large number of seats had been erected to accommodate the multitude.

            The principal oration was there given by Col. William Jennings Bryan who was at his best.  He had chosen for his subject, "Little Things," and for one hour held the audience spell bound.  A splendid tribute was paid to the elder Lemen, their relations to the Bryan family, and a large number of incidents related which showed how mighty events are brot about by little incidents.  Col. Bryan has the gift of oratory, and it is a pleasure to hear him.  His style is easy and natural, and his language pure English.  He was easily heard and understood.

            Dinner was then announced, and a recess taken for the repast.

            After dinner Ex-Sen. J. W. Rickert gave a resume of Monroe county history.  For many years Mr. Rickers has been a student of history, and the compilation of incidents in connection with the affairs of this county was interesting and instructive, and contained many events not usually found in our histories.  The address was scholarly and instructive.

            The church work of James Lemen was then reviewed by Dr. Twing.

            Rev. W. A. Boyakin, who had hoped to live to attend this event, but who died not long since, had prepared an address in memory of the pioneers of this locality, which was read by Fred Merrills of Belleville.

            The final offerings were by seven little girls, Edna Douglas of Renault, Marguerite Rickert, Loretta Ziebold, Minnie Schmidt, Irene Tolin, Ura Eisenbart and Dorothy Dalkert of Waterloo.

The old Lemen homested is now owned by William Fridrichs.  While it is now one of the best farms in the county it was then a wilderness, and what is now Mr. Fridrich's pasture was Mr. Lemen's fishing lake.  The old house erected as a fort by Rev. Lemen is still well preserved, some additions having been made by the present owner.  The house is of brick, and since the destruction of Kaskaskia, is perhaps the oldest brick house west of the Alleghenies.  It was built in 1796.  The old loop holes are still plainly to be seen, tho they have long since been chinked with brick, where first the trusty rifle repelled the larking foe.  In the woods nearby were deer, bear, wild fowl of every kind, while the lake was full of the finest fish.

Among those present were:

William Lemen, Albert Lemen and James Lemen, great-grandsons.

Mrs. G. W. Beattie, of St. Louis, daughter of James Lemen jr.  (Note: this entry is confusing.  She is the daughter of James Lemen (son of Joseph & Mary "Polly" Kinney), but she is not Rev. James L. Lemen, Jr.'s daughter.)

Robert Lemen, St. Louis; Mrs. Fannie Jones, Olney; Mrs. Lydia Lemen, J. D. Lemen and wife of Urbana, and hundreds of other relatives.

In connection with this event it is but just and proper that due credit be given to Wm. Lemen, Dr. Douglas, and Mrs. M. Hoener of Waterloo, and others who did so much to make the celebration possible and successful.  Mr. Lemen particularly worked long and perseveringly and at much expense personally in making the preparations necessary for the accommodation of the luminous throng that assembled in the grove.  The neighbors turned a helping hand, and the general verdict is that the work was well done.

* (Photograph) Dr. H. W. Twing of Alton, President of Lemen Monument Association (very blurred).



Eastwood Andrew 03-10-1825 11-01-1825   E. Daniel Lemen Monument
Eastwood Jacob 11-26-1776 04-25-1844     Lemen Monument
Eastwood Ruth 02-10-1779 05-01-1818 B.   Lemen Monument
Lemen James C. 11-11-1821 1Y,9M     Lemen Monument
Lemen James, Sr. 11-20-1760 01-08-1823 Katherine Ogle Rev. War soldier Lemen Monument
Lemen Katherine 01-14-1764 07-14-1840 Rev. James, Sr. Nee Ogle Lemen Monument
Lemen Robert 10-03-1822 7M     Lemen Monument
Lemen Sidney b. 3 weeks 1836     Lemen Monument


First page of the program for the NSDAR's June 2004 marking of the grave.