WHL Wallace – The Dickey Family Cemetery tours

Gen WHL Wallace headstone

The Dickey Family Cemetery is located on a small plot of landlocked space in unincorporated north Ottawa, IL. It was set aside from a large landholding of T. Lyle Dickey to the west of his home, Valleyview for his family’s final resting place. It was set aside in the early 1840’s and the first known burial was that of his 5 year old daughter Mary Jane in 1842. This was followed by another 5 year old daughter Kitty Emma in 1853.

Dickey, himself was a highly respected Ottawa Lawyer and circuit judge, later to become a Supreme Court Justice. His young newly acquired law partner in the 1840’s was WHL Wallace, who was a rising star that was extinguished at the battle of Shiloh in April of 1862. As a General leading General Grants 2nd Division of the Army of the Tennessee he was martyred trying to save his Division. He was at that time married to the judge’s daughter and thus given a special space in the Family Cemetery.

T. Lyle Dickey as well as General WHL Wallace and their blended family were very patriotic Ottawans. The judge and Wallace served the community and nation well in both the Mexican and Civil Wars and deserve our efforts to preserve their final resting places.

Guided bus tours of the Dickey-Wallace Cemetery will depart from the Reddick Mansion from 12N-2:30pm. From 4:00pm to 6:30pm, several historic buildings in downtown Ottawa including the Masonic Temple, Christ Episcopal Church, St. Columba Church, the Toll House and the Reddick Mansion will be open to the public. At 6:30pm Saturday evening, a Luminary Program will be presented in Washington Square. 810 luminaries will be lit and dedicated to the LaSalle County soldiers, who died as result of the Civil War. At 7:30pm, at the 807 Building (807 La Salle Street, Ottawa, IL) John Heider of R.I.P, Ltd, a cemetery preservation service, will speak on “Old Cemetery Restoration / Strategy for Dickey-Wallace Cemetery”. A discussion and reception will follow the presentation.


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