James M. Curtis, Concord, is a native of Schaghticoke, Rensselaer County, New York, where he was born August 2, 1822. His parents, Daniel and Mehitable (Masters) Curtis, were also natives of New York. The father died there; he was a farmer by occupation and also a soldier in the war of 1812. The latter died in Davenport, Iowa, aged nearly eighty-seven years. She was the mother of nine children, viz.: Erastus, Abraham. James M., Mark B. (deceased), Harman H., Phineas, Robert C., Maria (deceased) and Mrs. Cynthia C. Burch.
Our subject was educated principally in the common schools of his native town. In early life he worked on the farm, and also taught school in the winter. In 1848 he immigrated to Adams County, Illinois, where he taught school. The following year, in 1849, he entered some land in Section 18, in Concord Township, Bureau County, Illinois To which he moved in 1851.
He was a very successful farmer, and at present owns 893 acres of land in Concord Township and 1,000 acres of swampland in Gold, Manlius and Fairfield Townships.
Mr. Curtis was married December 15, 1850, to Helen M. Stevenson, born February 7, 1831, in Carroll County, Maryland. She died November 7, 1871. She is a daughter of Basil D. and Henrietta (Wells) Stevenson, and is the mother of six children, viz.: Clifton, Harmon E., Mrs. Jessie M. Pervier, Charles e., Helen M. (deceased) and Carrie B.
Mr. Curtis was married a second time January 9, 1878, to Maria C. Rice, a native of New York. She is the mother of Robert R. Curtis.
Mr. Curtis is religiously connected with the Unitarian Church. He has taken an active part in the affairs of his township, supporting the Republican party, and filling the offices of Assessor and Supervisor, the latter of seven years.
Source: History of Bureau County, Illinois, H. C. Bradsby, Editor. World Publishing Company Chicago 1885