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In 1878, James Anderson and George Findlay imported the first lot of Aberdeen Angus cattle from Scotland to the U.S. Accompanying the shipment was Alexander Kelley, a 19-year-old whose experiences as a shepherd helped calm the cattle on the long voyage. By 1882, Alexander Kelley had settled permanently in Lake Forest. He married Martha James and had seven children: Gordon, Arthur, Albert, Leslie, Martha, Myrtle and Edna. His road contracting company, which also employed his sons and brothers-in-law, had paved over half of Lake Forest’s streets and driveways by 1923.
When Alexander and Martha celebrated their 50th anniversary in 1935, all seven of their children (and nearly all their grandchildren) lived within just a few blocks of each other. Illinois Road, Wildwood Road and Washington Circle were populated with Kelleys. No one had to travel too far for the family reunion.
Nomination submitted by Bryan J. Krusmark
Click the thumbnail images below for a slide presentation about the Kelley family from the 2012 Centennial Family Awards.