“And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.”
John F. Kennedy

Above is one of my favorite Presidential quotes. But as far as what got me involved in my community, you only have to look at the example my parents and grandparents had demonstrated.

My father and mother (Donald C. and Wanda Ackerman) where actively involved in every youth organization my younger brother (Timothy P. Ackerman) and I participated in. From Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts to Summer Baseball and Fishing Derbies, they were helping make these events happen not only for my brother and I but for the community as a whole. My father was a volunteer firefighter with Northern Tazewell Fire Department for 15+ years. Today, semi-retired, both are still involved as volunteers with the Boy Scouts of America and Coast Guard Auxiliary. They both volunteer as Camp Rangers during the summer at Cache Lake, the W.D. Boyce Council's Canadian Boy Scout Camp. They live on the Ackerman Family Farm outside Deer Creek where my dad was born and raised, the third generation of Ackerman's to do so. My brother and his wife along with their sons live in Lewistown and my brother is a employee of the Illinois Air National Guard.

As for my grandparents (Robert and Emma Ackerman) they both volunteered with the Tazewell County 4H, Farm Bureau, Deer Creek Township, and many other community organizations. My grandfather was one of the original volunteers of the Deer Creek Middle School PTA's Annual Pancake and Sausage Supper and many other family members have been regular volunteers over the years at this great community fund-raiser. My grandfather and his cousin (Clyde H. Ackerman) both have their names on the McKenzie Building as they were both serving as Township Supervisors when the building was constructed.

The history of the Ackerman Family in America starts the same way as most American Families. Christian Ackerman, who was born on Christmas Day in 1813, immigrated to America from Bavaria, Germany, in 1838 by sailboat. He traveled from New York to Hamilton, Ohio, by foot and wagon train. After working for six months as a farm hand to raise funds for his travels, he boarded a riverboat for Illinois and eventually ending up in Spring Bay in 1839. Here he meet and married Anna Belsley later that same year. They first lived in the Groveland area and then moved to the Morton Ackerman Centennial Farm in 1871.

Anyone that reviews Ackerman Family History since that time will notice the Family Tradition of Community Service. Ackerman’s have been very active in the Farm Bureau (two past presidents), townships, park districts, churches, fire departments, police departments, 4H, Boy Scouts, Coast Guard and many, many more.

Ackerman’s served in the US military in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, both conflicts in the Persian Gulf & Iraq, Afghanistan, and many other conflicts. During World War II, the Ackerman Centennial Farm in Morton had stationed POW’s from Germany that assisted in the harvest.

Community Service is an Ackerman Family Tradition.

Bio  |  Ackerman Family History

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