Johnson, Joel

b. May 21, 1806, in Berkshire County, Massachusetts. After traveling west to St. Louis, Missouri, Johnson found work as a boot and shoemaker. He procured leather and other materials and left for Edwardsville, Illinois, where he opened a leather shop. In April 1833, Johnson moved to Springfield, Illinois, where he operated a boot, shoe, and leather business. In 1835, he opened a hotel and stayed in that business for over forty years. In 1850, Johnson was a shoemaker in Sangamon County. In 1852, he was a stockholder in the Mechanics and Farmers Bank in Springfield, Illinois, and in 1860, he was a real estate dealer and owned real estate worth $25,000 and personal property worth $2,000.
Illinois Daily Journal (Springfield, Illinois), 30 October 1852, 3:2; John Power, History of the Early Settlers of Sangamon County, Illinois (Springfield: E. A. Wilson and Company, 1876), 412-13; Sangamon County, Illinois, Seventh Census of the United States, 1850; Sangamon County, Illinois, Eighth Census of the United States, 1860.