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Mr. Coudry was born in Connecticut, August 8, 1828, but was reared to manhood in Pennsylvania. His parents were Russell and Almira (Bronson) Coudry, natives of Connecticut. The Coudry family is of English origin. The father was born in 1800, made farming his life work and died in 1869. In his earlier years he supported the Democratic party but afterward strenuously upheld the principles of Republicanism. Mrs. Coudry departed this life in 1852. Their family numbered six children as follows: Levi is married and resides in Greenwood, McHenry County; Riley of this sketch; Sarah Jane, wife of Mr. Newman, a farmer residing near Greenwood; Mary, deceased wife of Dwight Smith, a successful farmer; Silas died in infancy; Harvey enlisted in the service of his country during the late war and died from exposure in the army.
The boyhood days of our subject were spent in the Keystone State and at the age of sixteen be emigrated to Illinois with his parents who made an overland journey with two teams to the West in 1844, and after renting a farm for four years, removed to McHenry County, where the father purchased six hundred and forty acres of land in a wild and unimproved condition. He there made a home and began the development of the farm, but after a year started for California, accompanied by our subject. They traveled to Council Bluffs and there joined a caravan of twenty-five teams that had made preparations to cross the plains together, but account account of the limited supply of grass and forage for the teams the company was compelled to separate and they went on alone, traveling by way of Salt Lake City, and at length reached Placerville, Cal., or Hangtown as it was then called on account of tbree men having been hanged there. They arrived about the 1st ofSeptember, 1850, and worked in the mines in that locality until the following spring when they went on a prospecting tour up the Yuba River, returning to Sacramento, where they prepared their summer supplies. They then went up Sutler's Creek, where they spent the summer of 1851, and in the fall went to Yorktown, where they engaged in surface mining. They returned in June, 1853 after a reasonably successful trip, coming back to Lake County by the way of the Nicaraugua route.
After his return, Riley Coudry purchased a partially improved farm of two hundred and eight-eight acres in Fremont Township. He married Miss Ann A. Pollock, who was born in Pennsylvania in 1831, but when a child was brought by her parents to Illinois, where she grew to womanhood. Nine children graced their union, three sons and six daughters--Mary E., wife of George Radke, a successful farmer of Fremont Township; Edward D. who was educated in the University of Valparaiso, Ind., is now aiding in the operation of the home farm Bertha A., wife of Frank Proctor, a farmer of Gray's Lake, Ill.; Jennie H., wife of Walter brown, a resident farmer of Lake Villa; Robert P., a salesman in a wholesale house in Chicago; Sarah E. was educated in the Classical Institute of Rockefeller and is now a teacher of recognized ability; Emma A., is also engaged in teaching; and Lillian who completes the family. Her scholastic attainments would also entitle her to a teacher's certificate.
Mr. Coudry cast his first Presidential vote for John C. Fremont and although he has never taken an active part in political affairs in the sense of office-seeking he has since faithfully supported the Republican party. The cause of education has ever found in him a warm friend and while serving as School Director he has done much in its interests. By his own efforts he has acquired a handsome competence, working his way upward from a humble position financially to one of affluence. He may therefore truly be called a self-made man. Fair dealing has characterized his business career and his upright life entitles him to the confidence and respect of all. He and his wife rank high in the social world and have many friends throughout this community.