Following is one of the Biographies and Stories which where gathered by Charles Sumner McKamy in the 1950s for publication in a Crawford County History Book. Unfortunately he passed away before the book was published.

Raymond Rexford Rowland was born on a farm in Washington County, Ohio, 25 miles west of Marietta, Ohio. My father was the late Wm. K. Rowland and mother was the late Anna Clice, who were tenant farmers until I was 14 years of age. I went to the typical old one room country schools where they really taught the THREE "R'S", (reading, ritin and rithmetic), and we learned a great deal from hearing the advanced grades recite. Went to a small high school at Bartlett, Ohio, where five or six seniors graduated each year. I worked on the farm until I was about 21 years of age when I attended Ohio University at Athens, Ohio where I took commercial work for one and a half years. Came to Flat Rock, Illinois in February 1914 where I worked as a roustabout (field work) in the oil fields for the Ohio Oil Company until they transferred me to the Cashier's Office in Robinson under the late E.L. Taylor; Mr. W.W. McDonald being the Superintendent. Later in this article I will recite some of the things and conditions as I found them in Robinson 42 years ago.

I returned to Ohio to marry Sophia Elizabeth (Beth) Greenlees on July 20, 1916. We had one child, Dwight Rexford Rowland, who was born June 29, 1917. He was educated in the Robinson schools, graduated from the University of Illinois Law School in 1941, passed the State Bar Examination, and married Barbara Jean Gerling of Bloomington, Illinois on September 5th same year. They have four children, viz: Peter Dwight, Jay Alan, Nancy Elizabeth and David Scott.

Dwight enlisted in the Air Corps in 1941 for cadet training, flew a B-25 light bomber up through the South Pacific Theatre in World War II. On a routine flight, which was to be his last mission, he had a motor shot out and plane set on fire and was reported missing over Formosa June 5, 1945. He chose to land in the water rather than be a Jap prisoner, where those of his crew who were able fought being carried to shore by the tail end of a typhoon in which we lost 21 ships, after which they were all exhausted and gave up, at which time a submarine surfaced and picked them up. The name of the submarine was ICEFISH and Dwight wrote, "It was the best d___d sub in the world". He has served continuously since his enlistment, serving as Judge Advocate in Korea during the Korean Conflict. He is now a major serving as Judge Advocate at March Air Force Base, California, but is currently being transferred to Washington, D.C. We lost his mother on March 25, 1920 before he was three years old.

On October 9, 1922, I married Blanche Mary Weaver, daughter of Wm. H. Weaver, Sr., of Oblong, Illinois. We had two children. Mary Lou, who was born October 8, 1926, graduated from Eastern Illinois State College at Charleston, Illinois with a B.A. Degree in Education. She taught the first grade in Farmer City, Illinois for five years, married Carl Luck and they have two children, Kurt and Max and reside in Farmer City. James Edward Rowland was born October 13, 1930, took his pre-med work at Eastern Illinois State College at Charleston, Illinois with a B.A. Degree in Education, spent two years in the Service and is currently in Medical School at the University of Florida at Gainesville, Fla. We lost their mother on August 11, 1943.

In addition to my children's education in the common schools of Robinson, they all took music lessons from Mrs. Kate Ferguson, a grand old lady who loves everybody and is loved by all who know her, especially her pupils. It is my belief that she has contributed more to further the cause of music among our young people and in our schools than any other person in the community.

In 1917 I resigned from the Ohio Oil Company to take a job with the Associated Producers (Tidewater Oil Company) from which I resigned and went with Norris Brothers and the Kewanee Oil Company until 1922 when I became affiliated with the Zwermann Company (Pottery, now Case Company Pottery) where I was on the Board of Directors, serving as Secretary and Treasurer of the Company until we sold out in 1925 to the W.A. Case & Son Mfg. Co. of Buffalo, N.Y., with which company I remained as Purchasing Agent and Office Manager until in 1945 when I resigned and have since been looking after my own interests, being primarily interested in apartment houses, doing oil field leasing, etc. While I made several changes in my employment from March 1, 1914 to Aug. 1945, there was not a day that I was not on a salary.

During the early part of my sojourn, here it was my good fortune to make the acquaintance of, and become affiliated with the late Jas. D. Toomey and Dan McGuigan, two wonderful men who were brought up in the Old School, so to speak, with little to start with, could talk with and understand the position of the common man and always lend a helping hand. It is also with pride that I mention being affiliated with the late Carl H. Zwermann who was another outstanding man for the humble peoples, for which he would accept no personal credit. I might add also, that to be intimately acquainted wit the late Mr. and Mrs. L.S. Heath was a great inspiration and everybody will find it time well spent to read Mr. Heath's autobiography, an autographed copy of which he sent to this contributor only a short time before he passed away.

I am affiliated with Robinson No. 250 A.F. & A.M., serving as master in 1922. Past High Priest of Robinson Chapter No. 225 R.A.M., serving in 1921 as Past Worthy Patron of Katherine Chapter No. 637 Order of the Eastern Star, and seven times Past Watchman of the Shepards Naomi Chapter No. 45 of the Order of White Shrine of Jerusalem in Robinson. I have been a member of Gorin Commandery No. 14, Knights Templars of Olney, Illinois and a member of Anid Temple Order of the Mystic Shrine, East St. Louis, Illinois, from which two orders I carry a demit.

I was pleased to serve on the Building Committee for our Local Masonic Temple, with two very able men in the persons of the late Fred I. Mills and Frank Kopta; two men with wonderful personalities and are greatly missed by all who knew them and especially in this community. I also served one term on the City Council.

I have seen a great many changes throughout the county as well as Robinson proper, some of which I will endeavor to mention.

I landed in Flat Rock about 12:30 P.M. on a cold February day in 1914 with some 12 inches of snow on the ground and had to wait for a livery rig (buckboard) until after dark to be driven out to John R. Pinkstaff's, in the vicinity of Van Houten Church in the southeast part of the county where the drilling tools were. There were few automobiles and had there been many, they would have been useless as there were no gravel, much less concrete, roads. In winter, automobiles were jacked up, tires removed, batteries taken to the house to keep them from freezing, a muslin cover put over the top, then touring car or roadster, both on which the tops would lay back like the old buggies. When I first stopped in Robinson that February 1914, there were 37 drilling rigs running in Robinson, drilling on town lots as that was during the town lot boom, and what a mess it was.

I have been associated with and known a lot of wonderful people since coming to Robinson and the community has been good to me; having my ups and downs, like all others, but the ups outweigh the downs, else I would not be here and I have endeavored to contribute a bit for the good of the community.