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Samuel Laird was a prominent citizen in Illinois. He has had military training and volunteered for service in the war with Mexico, becoming colonel of a cavalry regiment. He was a strong supporter of Abraham Lincoln and was deputized to escort Lincoln to Freeport for one of his famous debates with Stephen Douglas. Samuel drove four white horses in tandem, hitched to a high-seated carryall on which he sat with Lincoln. The two were dressed in long-tailed coats and high silk hats.
When the Civil War came along, Thomas Laird, the oldest son of Samuel and Elizabeth Laird, enlisted Oct. 8, 1861, in company G, 46th Illinois Infantry, and served with distinction. He saved the life of his commanding officer and was promoted to first lieutenant. He was discharged Feb. 2, 1866. Laird Haines also served in the Union Army.


Samuel Laird and his wife died shortly after the Civil War and their family of six grown children felt the Laird homestead in Illinois was too small to support the six of them. Webster Co., Nebraska, had just opened up for homesteading and there were large tracts of unclaimed land available.


   Samuel Laird a Grandson of William Laird and Martha Wilson

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