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Full text of "History of Fort Dodge and Webster County, Iowa"

HISTORY OF 

FORT DODGE 

AND 

WEBSTER COUNTY 

IOWA 



VOLUME 



CHICAGO 

THE PIONEER PUBLISHING COMPANY 
1913 



■ • • \ 




THE I^'EW YORK 
PUBLIC LIBRARY 



ASTOR, LeNOX AYIO 
TILD6.N FOUNDATIONS. 



BIOGRAPHICAL 



JOHN F. DUNCOMBE. 

John F. Dunconibe, deceased, who was a prominent attorney-at- 
law in Fort Dodge, Iowa, was born in W'attsburg, Pennsyhania, 
October 22, 183 1. Under the parental roof he spent his boyhood 
days and in his native town acquired his early education, which was 
supplemented by study in Allegheny College of Meadville, Pennsyl- 
vania, and in the Center College at Danville, Kentucky. He was 
graduated from both of these institutions before taking up the study 
of law in his native town in the office of Marshall & Vincent. He 
was admitted to the bar of Pennsylvania and for one year engaged 
in the practice of his profession there. In April, 1855, he came to 
Fort Dodge, Iowa, and began the practice of law in this city. He 
made for himself a creditable place in the ranks of the legal fra- 
ternity and was widely known for the care with which he prepared 
his cases. In no instance was his reading ever confined to the limita- 
tions of the questions at issue; it compassed every contingency and 
provided not alone for the expected but as well for the unexpected, 
which happens in the courts quite as frequently as out of them. His 
logical grasp of the facts and principles of the law applicable to 
them has been another potent element in his success, and his remark- 
able clearness of expression and precise diction were counted among 
his conspicuous gifts and accomplishments. For thirty-seven years 
he acted as attorney for the Iowa division of the Illinois Central 
Railroad and he served in the same capacity for the Mason City & 
Fort Dodge, the Des Moines & h'ort Dodge and the Cherokee & 
Dakota Railroads. He practiced in twenty-five counties in the state. 
In political and public life Mr. Duncombe was equally prominent. 
In 1857, when the news of the Spirit Lake massacre reached Fort 
Dodge, he took an active part in raising the troops which were sent 
against the Indians, and he acted as captain of Company B. In 
1859 he was elected to the state senate from the senatorial district 
which was then composed of one-fourth of the entire state. He also 
was a member of the lower house for two terms and attended four 



6 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COLWTY 

general and three special sessions. In 1872 he served as chairman of 
the Iowa delegation to the national democratic convention at Balti- 
more. For, sixteen years he served as regent of the State University 
and he was appointed by Governor Geer to serve on the capital com- 
mission but this honor he declined. Because of his public energy 
and liberality his name is identified with most of the institutions of 
Fort Dodge. The Duncombe Hotel stands in proof of his public 
spirit and it is an acknowledged fact that his individual efforts and 
support were employed in all enterprises persuading railroad com- 
panies to extend their lines into Fort Dodge. In conjunction with 
C. B. Richards he developed the coal mines at this place and at 
Boone, and he served as secretary for both the Fort Dodge Coal 
Company and the Rocky Ford Coal Company of Wyoming Territory. 
On May 11, 1859, Mr. Duncombe was married to Miss Mary A. 
Williams, a daughter of Major \\'illiam Williams, the patriot-pioneer 
of Fort Dodge. To this union seven children were born, including 
the following: William E. ; Charles F., publisher of the Chronicle 
and former mayor of Fort Dodge; Mary J., wife of Senator W. S. 
Kenyon : Gertrude ; and John A. In politics Mr. Duncombe was an 
inflexible democrat, stanchly supporting the policies and activities 
of that party. His influence was always used along the lines of 
reform and progress. He was a charter member of the chapter and 
commandery of the Masonic fraternity of this city and also attained 
the thirty-third degree of the Scottish Rite. Mrs. Duncombe is 
president of the Webster County Historical Society, an office which 
she is well qualified to hold, as she has been a resident of this city 
since her arrival here in 1855. At i)resent she is li\'ing at the old 
home. Fair Oaks. Mr. Duncombe's death occurred .\ugust 2, 1902. 
His interest in community affairs was that of a public-spirited citizen 
who recognized the opportunities for reform, progress and improve- 
ment, and he labored to achieve what could l)e attained in that 
direction. 



CHARLES LARRABEE. 



Charles Larrabee. a leading and respected resident of F^ort Dodge, 
living at No. 1222 Si.xth avenue, South, is a well known factor in 
financial circles as the vice president and a director of the Iowa 
Savings Bank and is also prominent in agricultural circles as a far- 
mer and breeder of thoroughbred cattle. His birth occurred in Cler- 






<^^^-/jc:^ 



'C^i^t^ 



THE NEW YORK 
PUBLIC LIBRARY 



ASTOFI, LENOX 
TILDE N FOUNDa 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 9 

mont, Iowa, on the 13th of June, i86_', his parents being Hon. W'il- 
liam and Ann M. (Appehuan) Larrabee. x\ sketch of the father 
appears on anotlier page of this work. The paternal grandfather of 
our subject was Adam Larrabee, while his maternal grandparents 
were Gustavus Adolphus and Prudence Ann (Williams) Appelman. 

Charles Larrabee was reared in the city of his nativity and ob- 
tained his early education in the public schools, continuing his studies 
in the Iowa Agricultural College at Ames. Assisting in the work of 
his father's farm, he early became familiar with the duties and labors 
that fall to the lot of the agriculturist, and in the pursuit of farming 
and stock-raising he has found both pride and pleasure. After putting 
aside his text-books he went to Kossuth county, Iowa, to look after 
his father's landed interests there, and for a period of seven years 
resided at Armstrong in Emmet county, just over the Kossuth county 
line. Subsequently he came to Fort Dodge and, in association with 
E. J. Breen and others, organized the Iowa Savings Bank with a 
capitalization of fifty thousand dollars. In the capacity- of \ice 
president he has since contributed in large measure to the growth 
and success of the institution. He is also connected with the Corn 
Belt Packing Company, the E. H. Williams Lumber Company and 
the Lehigh Sewer Pipe & Tile Company. The pursuits of faniiint;' 
and stock-raising, however, have claimed the major portion of his 
time and attention. He and his brother. Senator Frederic Lar- 
rabee, are Ijreeders of the Brown Swiss ami Hereford cattle. In 
1881, at the Iowa State Fair, he exhibited for liis father tlie first 
herd of Brown Swiss cattle ever shown at that fair and received a 
silver medal. He owns farms in Kossuth and Lyon counties, and 
the cattle farm which he owns in association with his brother com- 
prises four hundred acres and lies just soutli of the corporate limits 
of Fort Dodge. His interests are varied and important and in 
their successful control he lias won a i:re(lital)!e measure of pros- 
perity and an enviable reputation for integrity and straight- 
forward dealing. 

On the Pth of May, 1901, Mr. Larrabee was muted in marriage to 
Miss Charlotte Winston Osborn. a native of Ripi^ey, Iowa, and a 
daughter of Benjamin F. an<l .Mittie ( Shelton) Osborn, who were 
born in Indiana and Virginia respectively. Her parents became early 
settlers of Greene county, Iowa, and arc still residents of Rippey, 
where Mr. Osborn has been engaged in ilic drug business since 1878. 
He was connected with the board of regents at Iowa City and also 
with the board of trustees of the Iowa State Teachers' College at 



10 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Cedar Falls for a number of years. He has three children, William 
S., Wayne M. and Charlotte \\inston Larrabee. The last named is 
the mother of three children, namely: Charles, Jr., Frederic Osborn 
and Anne. 

Charles Larrabee is a stanch repuWican and has been a member 
of the Fort Dodge city council for one term. While still a resident 
of his native city he served as a member of the Clermont school 
board. His wife belongs to the Episcopal church. As a business 
man Mr. Larrabee has been conspicuous among his associates, not 
only for his success, but for his fairness and honorable methods. In 
everything he has been eminently practical, and this has been mani- 
fest not only in his business undertakings but in his agricultural, 
social and private life. 



O. J. WOODARD. 



O. J. Woodard is cashier, general manager and a director of the 
First National Bank of Lehigh, Iowa, of which city he has been a 
resident since 1910. He is a son of John and Ella (Irish) \\'oodard, 
the former a native of Maine, his, birth having occurred in 1820, 
and the latter a native of Vermont. The father was reared at Fox- 
croft, Maine, where he learned the trades of carpenter and mill- 
wright. In 1852 he went to California, making the journey by way 
of Cape Horn, and after reaching the Golden state was for some time 
interested in mining. He then removed to Minnesota in the early 
'60s, where he remained until 1871, at which time he located on a 
farm of two hundred and si.xteen acres in P.urnside townshi]), Web- 
ster county. Iowa. At the time of the discovery of gold in Dead- 
wood, South Dakota, he, in company with three men from Fort 
Dodge, went to that gold camp, where he remained for some time and 
then returned to Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he continued to live until 
1884. He then removed with his family to his farm in Burnside 
township and there died in 1888. He was a member of the Con- 
gregational church. He was united in marriage to Miss Ella Irish 
in Minnesota. At an early age she removed with her parents from 
Vermont and settled in Wisconsin. Later the family took up their 
abode in Minnesota. Mr. and Mrs. Woodard were the parents of 
four children: Belle, the wife of \\'. A. Van \\'inkle. li\ing at 
Davton, Iowa; Fern, who also resides in Davton : Beatrice, who mar- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 11 

ried O. L. Smith, of Oiiincy, Michigan; and O. J., the subject of this 
sketch. The mother of this family is a member of the Methodist 
Episcopal church and now resides with her eldest daughter in Dayton. 
O. J. \\'oodard was reared at home and received his early educa- 
tion in the public schools of Fort Dodge and later pursued a course 
in the Highland Park College at Des Moines, Iowa. After completing 
his education he was engaged in farming from 1893 to January, 1907. 
His father died when the subject of this review was a j^outh of thir- 
teen years and for nineteen years following his father's death he 
had charge of the home farm, a position which he filled during his 
college days. He was also subsequently deputy treasurer of Webster 
county, serving under Mr. Hadley, who was the treasurer. He later 
filled the position of cashier of the State Savings Bank at Yetter, 
Iowa, and as such continued for fifteen months. On January i, 1910, 
he removed to Lehigh and there accepted the position as cashier and 
general manager of the First National Bank of that city, also serving 
on the board of directors, and has since devoted his attention to the 
interests of the bank. Besides his interest in the bank he is engaged 
in stock-raising, specializing in pure-bred Aberdeen Angus cattle. 
The undertaking is conducted on a rented farm, four miles from 
Lehigh in Burnside township, and our subject is the manager. 

Mr. ^^'oodard was united in marriage to Miss Nora B. Tennant, 
a native of Burnside township and a daughter of J. W. and Jane 
Tennant. both of whom are residents of Burnside. To Mr. and Mrs. 
\\'oodar(l two children have been born, Irene and Sibyl, both attend- 
ing public school. Mr. Woodard belongs to the republican party and 
has fraternal relations with the Masonic lodge at Lehigh, of which 
he is senior warden. He is one of the progressive and representative 
men of Webster county and a man who by strict integrity in business 
matters has won the confidence and esteem of all his friends and 
associates. 



FRANK ERNEST PRUSI.\. 

A hi.story of commercial development and progress in Fort Dodge 
would be incomplete were there failure to make reference to the 
Prusia Hardware Company, which was established in 1855 and of 
wiiich Frank Ernest Prusia is the secretary. This is one of the oldest 
business enterprises of the city and at its head are men — father and 



12 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

son — who figure prominently and honorably as factors in the pros- 
perity of the city. Frank E. Prusia was born in Fort Dodge, April 
9, 1871, his parents being Emanuel and Alary (Cohvell) Prusia, the 
former a native of Michigan and the latter of Maine. The paternal 
grandfather became one of the pioneers of Michigan and during the 
gold excitement in California he went to the Pacific coast. He died 
in middle life, while his wife, Mrs. Mary Prusia, passed away later. 
After losing her first husband she became the wife of George Klinedob. 
The only son of her first marriage is Emanuel E. Prusia. who was 
reared in Michigan and, when fourteen years old, came to Iowa-. 
F'or some time he was employed in the postoffice in Des Moines and 
he afterward became an early settler of Fort Dodge, where in 18^5 
he established the hardware business that is now one of the chief 
commercial enterprises of the city. He conducted this store under 
the name of the Prusia Hardware Company, of which he is still the 
president. The firm was incorporated in 1891, and their salesroom 
was originally located west of the Duncombe Hotel but for many 
years has been at Xo. 608 Central avenue. Honored and respected 
by all, there is no man in Fort Dodge who occupies a more prominent 
position in commercial and financial circles than does Emanuel E. 
Prusia, not only by reason of the success that he has achieved but 
also owing to the straightforward business policies that he has ever 
followed. He wedded Mary Colweil. a daughter of Charles and 
Delia Colweil, who were natives of Maine. Her father was a farmer 
by occupation and became one of the early settlers of Douglas town- 
ship, Webster county. Iowa, where he died when well advanced in 
years. His wife passed away in Furt Dodge. They had a large 
family including George, Mary, Charles, Frank, Damie, Jerome. 
Fred and Sarah. Their daughter, Mary, who l)ecame the wife of 
Emanuel E. Prusia, passed away in 1886, at the age of forty-one 
years. She was a consistent and faithful member of the Methodist 
church, to which ]\lr. Prusia also ])elongs. iMnanuel F. Prusia has 
membership relations with the Odd Fellows society. In his fam- 
ily were three children, but Frank E. is the only one living. The 
second son. Leon, died at the age of fifteen vears and Earle died 
in infancy. 

Frank Ernest Prusia was reared in Fort Dodge and attended the 
public schools, while later he pursued a cour^.e of studies in Cornell 
College at Mount Vernon, Iowa. Throughout his entire business 
career he has been connected with his father's establishment, first as 
a clerk in the store, while later he was admitted to a partnership. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 13 

The following year he became secretary of the company, which was 
incorporated to conduct a business that had grown from a small 
beginning to extaisive proportions. Their trade is large and the 
success of the institution is due to the progressive, modern methods 
of the owners. They handle all kinds of shelf and heavy hardware, 
stoves, furnaces and tinware and. iia\e a business that has grown 
year by year and is now extensive. 

On the 30th of October, 1895, Frank E. Prusia was married to 
Miss Sadie Thompson, a daughter of John Thompson. She was 
born in Watsunville, California, and it was there that she was mar- 
ried. Her parents were natives of Ireland and died in W'atsom'ille. 
They had eleven children who reached adult age, Julia, Peter. Lizzie, 
Joseph, John, Edward, Maggie, Chris, Mary, Katie and Sadie. Mr. 
and Mrs. Prusia hold membership in the Sacred Heart Catholic church. 
They are well known in Fort Dodge, where they have long resided, 
and their many friends include the best residents of the city, indi- 
cating that their social and other qualities are such as win them high 
regard and popularity. 



WTLLL^M R. TURNER. M. D. 



One of the most promising young physicians in Badger, Iowa, is 
Dr. William R. Turner, who since 1909 has been connected with the 
general practice of medicine in that community and has met with 
gratifying success. He was born in Des Moines on September 3, 1S84, 
and is a son of Robert and Sarah (Allen) Turner, the former a 
native of Scotland and the latter of Des Mwines. His father came 
to America when he was ten years of age, making the journey with 
his jiarents. He liad talent for invention and great mechanical dex- 
terity. The Jewett typewriter and a machine for making barbed 
wire are among the products of his labors. He followed the trade 
of a machinist and draftsman for a number of years and is now living 
retired in Des ]\Ioines. having reached the age of fifty-four vcars. 
His wife is fifty-three years of age. 

William R. Turner was reared at iiome ;aid was educated in tlie 
public schools of Des Moines. Sul)sei|uent to com])]eting tiie usual 
course of studies he entered his fatlier's macJiine shop and following 
a few years of activity there he enrolled in Drake University. .After 



14 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

some preparatory work in tliat institution he took up the study of 
medicine, graduating with the degree of M. D. in 1908. In the 
following year he came to Badger and commenced the general prac- 
tice of medicine. He is the only doctor in the village and has built 
up during the three years of his residence here a reputation as a 
skillful, efficient and thoroughly capable physician. He is progressive 
and enterprising I^ut never radical, a close and earnest student, and 
a practical doctor whose work up to the present time is a strong 
indication of greater success in the future. 

In July. 1906, Dr. Turner was united in marriage to Aliss Jessie 
E. Grigsby. a daughter of Luther and Annette (Sutton) Grigsby, 
the former a native of Kansas and the latter of Des Moines. Dr. 
and Mrs. Turner had one child, Jessie E., who died in November, 1907. 

The subject of th?s review is prominent in many capacities. He 
owns his office and residence on the main street of the town and 
serves as health officer, doing able and efficient work in that position. 
He is a member of the Webster County and the State Medical Socie- 
ties and is also active in the affairs of the Improved Order of Red- 
men. He is a democrat and belongs to the English Lutheran church. 
He has mastered his profession in all its details and keeps in touch 
w ith the progress made in medical science by constant reading. He 
adds to his scientific knowledge the qualities of integrity and con- 
scientiousness and is therefore well liked and prosperous. 



M. X. COREY 



M. X. Corey, who is owner and manager of the Morning Star 
Mill at I.chigh, was horn in I'ort Dodge. Iowa. March 22, 1880. His 
father. H. A. Corey, was a native of Illinois, and later removed to 
I'Ort Dodge, where he was engaged in mining, and in 1882 he came 
to Lehigh, where he operated a coal mine for several years. About 
1891 he engaged in the dry-goods and shoe business in this city and 
in the fall of 1900 built the Morning Star Mill, which he owned and 
operated until 1908, when M, X'^. Corey, our subject, became the 
owner. He was also interested in the Corey Pressed Brick Plant, 
together with his brollicrs, 1-rank, Silas and George Corey, being 
connected with that i)lant for about three years. At the time of his 
death he was engaged in the mercantile business. He also erected 
the store building which is occupied by Craft & Son. .\f Fort 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 15 

Dodge. Iowa, Mr. Corey was marrieil to Miss Cora E. Deering. a 
native of Illinois, and to this union was born one son, M. N., of 
this review. H. A. Corey passed away in May^ 1908, at his home 
in Lehigh, Iowa, and his \\-ife now resides at Long Beach, Cali- 
fornia. 

M. X. Corey attended the puhlic schools of Lehigh and later was a 
student at Drake Lnixersity in Des Moines. Ever since the starting 
of the mill at Lehigh he has been associated with the work of the 
same and in May, 1908, purchased the plant and has since operated 
it. He has made many improvements on the same and now lias a 
private electrical plant, which supplies both his mill and residence. 
He keeps the plant running steadily as a custom-exchange mill and 
the output is sold mostly in the neighboring districts. Mr. Corey is 
carrying on an extensive business and does general milling. He also 
owns a beautiful home here, which lie erected in 1909. 

Mr. Corey married Miss Mildred Dugger, who is the daughter of 
T. T. Dugger. To Mr. and Mrs. Corey has been born a son, Thomas 
Henry. In his political views Mr. Corey is a republican, and fra- 
ternal Iv he is a member of the ^lodern Woodmen of America, lie- 
longing to that lodge at Lehigh. He is a man of marked enterprise, 
positive character and strict integrity, and he has ever been greatly 
interested in the growth and prosperity of his community. His life 
is exemplary in many respects and he has the esteem of all his friends 
and the confidence of those who have had business relations w ith him. 



FREDERICK RUEBEL. 



Frederick Ruebel is a retired farmer of Webster county, where for 
forty years he cultivated two hundred and forty acres of land, meet- 
ing with well deserved success in his agricultural activities. He is 
also a veteran of the Ci\'il war. .Mr. Kucbel was iKjrn in .\'e\\ N ork 
on April i, 1838, and is a son of I'hilli]) and Margaret (Schopfer) 
Ruebel, natives of Germany. His father came to America at an 
early date and located in Xew York, where he worked at his trade 
of shoeniaking for several years. Eventually, however, he took up 
farming, following this occupation for some time in New York, be- 
fore he removed to Cedar b'alls, Iowa. Here he worked at his 
trade for some time, coming in 1876, to Calhoun county, Iowa, 
where he purchased and improved a one hundred and sixty-acre 



16 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

tract of land, which he operated until 1885, when he retired from 
active life and moved to Manson, this state, where he made his 
home until his death, which occurred in April, 1893. He had 
long survived his wife, who died in i860. 

Frederick Ruebel was reared at home and was educated in the 
public schools of New York. After he laid aside his books he worked 
for a short time by the month as a farm laborer, being thus en- 
gaged at the time of the outbreak of the Civil war. He then en- 
listed in Company K, F^ifth New York Heavy Artillery, in March, 
1864, and served for one year, receiving his honorable discharge at 
the close of hostilities. He was mustered out in August, 1865, and 
returned immediately to New York, where after a short time dur- 
ing which he worked as a laborer, he rented land and operated it 
for two years. At the expiration of that time he went to Humboldt, 
Iowa, but after one year's residence in this city moved to Webster 
county, settling in this section in April, 1869. Here he purchased 
eighty acres of land in Johnson township and began its improvement 
and cultivation. He was successful in his undertaking owing to his 
familiarity with and experience in agricultural details, which he had 
gained as farm hand. He added to his holdings from time to time 
and his farm now comprises two hundred and forty acres of fertile 
antl jiriKluctive land. He gave his attention tn its operation until 
the spring of 1909. when he retired from active life and moved to 
Barnum, where he jjurchased a comfortable and attractive Imme, in 
which he has resided since that time. 

On January i, 1867, -Mr. Ruebel was united in marriage to Miss 
Adaline Miller, a daughter of Michael and .Xdaline Miller, nalix'es of 
Ciermany. Mrs. Ruebel's father came to America at an early date 
and located in New York, where he followed farming until his death 
which ctcurred in 1877. His wife survived him many years, passing 
away in 1897. To Mr. and Mrs. Ruebel have been Ixirn two chil- 
dren : William I*"., who is a w ell kn(iwn farmer of Johnson town- 
ship; and Arthur P.. manager of the I'armers F.levalnr Company 
of Barnum. 

In his political views Mr. Ruebel is a consistent republican and is 
intelligently interested in public affairs. He belongs to the German 
Lutheran church. He is a stockholder in the Farmers Elevator Com- 
pany and in the Barnum Telephone Company and has served for 
seventeen years as treasurer of Johnson township. He has held the 
office of trustee and is at the present time a member of the town 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 17 

council, making his retired life as vital a force in local progress and 
growth, as his years actively spent in agricultural life. 



JAMES D. LOWRY, M. D. 

Dr. James D. Lowry, a well known physician and surgeon of 
Fort Dodge, has here followed his profession for the past eleven 
years and has enjoyed a steadily growing and gratifying practice. 
He was born in this city and is a son of Edward and Ellen (Breen) 
Lowry, natives of County Tipperary, Ireland. His paternal grand- 
parents, John and Catharine (Dunn) Lowry, died on the Emerald 
isle when well advanced in years. Their children were, Thomas, 
Christopher, James, Joseph, Edward, Elizabeth, Catharine and Mary. 

Edward Lowry, the father of Dr. James D. Lowry, was reared 
in his native country and there remained until 1856, when he crossed 
the Atlantic to the United States. In 1869 he came to Iowa, settled 
in Fort Dodge and began working at railroading. His demise, here 
occurred in 1897, when he had attained the age of sixty-three years. 
His wife was calletl to her final rest in the year 1878. Both were 
devout communicants of the Catholic church. They were the parents 
of eight children, six of whom grew to maturity, namely : Catharine, 
who is a resident of Fort Dodge; John B., also living in Fort Dodge; 
Joseph A., of Des Moines; James D., of this review; Thomas F. ; 
and Edward V., deceased. 

James D. Lowry was reared in Fort Dodge and attended the 
parochial and public schools in the acquirement of an education, 
completing the high-school course in 1896. Having determined upon 
the practice of medicine as a life work, he entered the college of 
medicine of the State L'niversity of Iowa, which institution con- 
ferred upon him the degree of M. D. in 190 1. Opening an office in 
Fort Dodge soon afterward, he has here practiced continuously since 
and has had well merited success as a representative of the medical 
profession. He belongs to the Webster County Medical Society, the 
Iowa State Medical Society and the American Medical Association 
and thus keeps in close touch with the most advanced methods of the 
fraternity. 

Politically Dr. Lowry is a republican, believing firmly in the prin- 
ciples of that party. He was elected to the office of county coroner 
in 1906 and has been twice reelected since that time. Fraternally 
he is identiiied with the following organizations: Fort Dodge Coun- 



18 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

cil, No. 613, Knights of Columbus; the CathoHc Order of Foresters; 
the Woodmen of the World; the Benevolent Protective Order of 
Elks; and the Eagles. He is a devoted communicant of the Catholic 
church and a pcipuhir member i>i the Country Club of Fort Dodge. 
His residence is at No. 199 North First street, and in both profes- 
sional and social circles of his native city he is well known and highly 
esteemed. 



JONATHAN PRENTISS DOLLIVER. 

Politician-ship develops mto statesmanship along readilv discern- 
ible lines. Honor and incorruptible integrity are fundamental forces 
in the evolution and are aided by a broad, cultured liberal mind, dis- 
cernment, forcefulness, decisiveness and indefatigable energy. In- 
dividual character has much to do with the change and no politician 
can aspire to enter into that higher rank of men of nation-wide repu- 
tation and usefulness, who is not, first of all, an honest man. These 
are standards of statesmanship and judged by them the late Senator 
Jonathan P. Dolliver, who passed to his final rest on October 15, 1910, 
orator, lawyer, representative and United States senator from Iowa, 
stands forth in exalted prominence. His death was a distinct loss to 
the .\merican nation and to its social, economic and ix)litical life. 

Senator Dolliver was born near Kingwood, Preston county, Vir- 
ginia, in the section of that state which is now \\'est Virginia, Febru- 
ary 6, 1858. His father, James J. Dolliver, was one of the dis- 
tinguished men in the Methodist Episcopal ministry and was an active 
factor in the development of that church. He was a man of ability 
along religious lines, guided unerringly by a humane and human spirit, 
which won him the confidence and affection of his parishioners. He 
was married in 1855 to Miss Eliza J. Brown, a daughter of Robert 
Brown, a native of Preston county, West Virginia. Five children 
were born to this union: Robert H., who has followed in his 
father's footsteps in a useful and distinguished career as a Methodist 
minister; Jonathan P., the subject of this sketch; Victor B., born in 
1 861, who followed the profession of law in Fort Dodge, Iowa, until 
his death; Margaret Gay; and Mary H., the wife of E. R. Graham, 
of Evanston, Illinois. 

Jonathan P. Dolliver was educated in public schools in \\'est Vir- 
ginia and with his brother Robert entered the University of W'est 
Virginia, from which he was graduated in 1875. He made wise use 
of every educational opportunity and when he had. concluded his col- 








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HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY ' 19 

lege career engaged in teaching school. He followed this occupation 
for one year in Sandwich, Illinois, preliminary to a legal career. The 
profession of law had always attracted him. In pursuance of his 
ambition he spent the next year in the offices of his uncle, John J. 
Brown, a prominent attorney in Morganstown, and laid the founda- 
tion at this time of an eminent career. He interrupted his studies for 
one year to return to Sandwich, Illinois, where he accepted the posi- 
tion as principal of the high school. In 1878 he resumed his legal 
studies and with his brother, Robert H. Dolliver, invested all 
his savings in law books. They eventually came to Fort 
Dodge, Iowa, where they opened a law office. The story of their 
early career is the usual record of struggle every young lawyer 
experiences. Young and practically unknown, they had few assets be- 
yond youthful energy and undaunted hope. Time, however, and suc- 
cess after success gradually brought them a clientage. The future 
senator early in his career showed decided talent and understanding 
of situations and questions of a public nature and gained a reputation 
which spread throughout the surrounding counties for his brilliant 
oratory. He was frequently called upon to make public addresses 
and his work in the lecture field at this period of his life is even flow 
remembered. \Miat reputation he had was entirely local, howe\er, 
and limited by the boundaries of his adopted state. His political ca- 
reer when it began was meteoric. He was a comparativeh' unknown 
lawyer, with a local reputation for oratory and with no important 
connection witli republican politics in the state- In 1884, however, 
he was invited to take the temporary chairmanship of the republican 
state convention, held at Des Moines, and on that occasion made a 
speech. The state of Iowa rang with his words and the nation 
echoed with their broad significance. Mr. Dolliver found himself 
famous. He at once became a man of national prominence. His 
brilliant mind was recognized by republican leaders and his talents 
were hailed as national assets in the republican campaign. He was 
called east and took a conspicuously successful part in the memoral)le 
campaign which nominated James G. Blaine as the republican can- 
didate for the presidency of the United States. Senator Dolliver 
accomplished effective work in the republican cause by his inspiring 
and convincing addresses, in which he analyzed the situation in a 
wonderfully clear manner. In every ensuing campaign Senator 
Dolliver assisted his party and was always on hand when help was 
needed in an emergency. His career in the United States congress 
began in 1888. His nomination as republican representative came 



22 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

unsolicited, it may be said, as a gift of the people of Iowa to a well 
beloved citizen. In 1886 Senator Dolliver's friends in the tenth 
Iowa congressional district tendered him the republican nomination 
for congressman. A prominent figure connected with this event was 
Cyrus C. Carpenter, of Fort Dodge, fomier governor of Iowa and 
ex-congressman from the tenth district. Senator Dolliver, however, 
was defeated by the election of A. J. Holmes, of Boone county, 
and the event marked a crucial period in his public life. Two years 
later he was unanimously nominated in the republican convention 
held at Webster City and was elected by a large majority over his 
nearest rival. Never since that time did he meet setbacks 
in his political career. He was renominated by acclamation and 
elected to the United States house of representatives every year 
up to and including 1900. 

Senator Dolliver's activities in public life were distinguished by 
a broad and liberal knowledge along social, economic and politi- 
cal lines. His character molded his political destiny to final 
triumphant success. He had a record of never giving his vote 
to an unworthy or useless cause and his career in its entirety was 
marked by intelligent labor in the promotion of the welfare of 
state and nation. His identification with the United States senate 
began in 1900. On July 14, of that year, Senator John H. Geer 
passed away and his death left a vacancy in the upper house of con- 
gress. Senator Dolliver seemed the logical man for the office. His 
friends rallied to his cause and on August 22, 1900, Governor Shaw 
appointed him United States senator to fill the vacancy caused by the 
death of Senator Geer. The favor and approval with which this ap- 
pointment was received b)^ the i)eople of Iowa was a surprise even to 
Senator Dolliver's most intimate friends and showed the strength of 
his political following in an adequate and gratifying manner. When 
the unexpired term was completed and Senator Dolliver came up for 
election there was no opposition to his candidacy. He was elected 
unanimously by both houses of the legislature in 1902 and reelected 
by acclamation in 1908. He served in the United States senate with 
conspicuous ability, until his death, in 19 10, giving his influence to 
that progressive movement in his party inaugurated to better existing 
conditions in government and nation- It was well known to every 
prominent jwlitical leader in 1900, but perhaps not to the general pub 
lie. that Senator Dolliver was strongly urged to become a candidate 
for vice president on the ticket with AIcKinley in 1900. In a memo- 
rial address Hon. Lafayette Young, of Iowa, speaking of this, said: 
"After Dolliver had served in the house and his reputation had lie- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 23 

come national he was frequently mentioned for the office of vice pres- 
ident, and some months before his death there had been a conspicuous 
expression that he would some time be president. Just before the 
convening of the republican national convention held in Philadelphia 
in 1900 a great western newspaper suggested Senator Dolliver tor 
vice president. The movement grew to be one of importance. 1 was 
a delegate to that convention and received a telegram from my asso- 
ciate delegates, already at Philadelphia, to come on at once, prepared 
to help the Dolliver movement and to prepare a speech to be used in 
placing him before the convention. I proceeded at once to Philadel- 
phia and our political activities began. We opened headquarters. 
We secureil banners and a band of music. Then we began to inquire 
in relation to our candidate. We discovered that he was stopping 
with friends in a Philadelphia suburb and that he was much uncon- 
cerned in regard to the suggestion of his name. He was urged, and 
yet his enthusiasm did not grow. He was asked to go before the 
Iowa delegation and finally did so, but with half -unconcerned and 
lukewarm spirit. The Dollixer enthusiasm had not reached Dolliver; 
but his friends continued their campaign in his behalf. Congres- 
sional associates visited headquarters and urged the movement for- 
ward; but the Senator said that he could not afford to be vice presi- 
dent: that the social requirements were too many. The only other 
name mentioned for vice president was that of Colonel Roosevelt. 
Colonel Roosevelt's friends were urging him not to be a candidate 
and not to accept the place, giving as a reason that four years later they 
hoped to nominate him for president. This, then, was the situation : 
Senator Dolliver's friends were urging him to accept the vice presi- 
dential nomination, regardless of his future, and Colonel Roosevelt's 
friends were determined that he should not accept, having in mind his 
future. 1 have always believed that if Colonel Roosevelt had not con- 
sented to accept the nomination Senator Dolliver would have been the 
nominee, and thus the whole course of history might have been 
changed. The negotiations and consultations among party leaders 
were numerous. Senators Piatt, of New York, and Quay, of Penn- 
svlvania. then conspicuous in party management, were anxious for the 
nomination of Colonel Roosevelt, to make what they called a 'well- 
balanced ticket,' meaning that men of dififerent types should be chosen 
for the two great offices; but these party leaders were unable to secure 
Colonel Roosevelt's consent. A little later in the proceedings these 
two senators, now dead, left the field, placing everything in charge of 
Senator Mark Hanna. Senator TIanna was chairman of the repub- 
lican national committee. With his usual energy he undertook to 



24 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

ascertain the situation. It is doubtlessly true that he knew the situa- 
tion. There had been so much in the way of diplomacy between the 
camps that the situation was generally known to active party men. 
The first thing Senator Hanna did was to call upon Senator Dolliver 
and his friends. Learning that the Senator did not have his heart 
in the cause, he asked the Senator and myself to go with him to call 
upon Colonel Roosevelt for the purpose of securing an acceptance or 
an unequivocal refusal. Colonel Roosevelt had all the time refused 
to say that he would not accept the nomination for vice president, re- 
fusing to assume that the office was beneath him for the reason that 
he regarded it as a great office. We called upon Colonel Roose\elt. 
Senator Hanna asked him, 'Colonel Roosevelt, will you accept the 
nomination for \ice president ? ' As I remember it, tlie Colonel re- 
sponded, T will, at your hands and at the hands of the entire republi- 
can party.' Then Senator Dolliver turned and with a smile said. 
'It is all over. My name shall not be used.' Senator Hanna asked 
Colonel Roosevelt who would present his name. The Colonel turned 
to Senator Dolliver and Senator Dolliver turned to me, remarking that 
'You can just change your speech a little and nominate the Colonel' 
Senator Hanna then, turning to me, said, 'It is up to you, young man." 
My speech nominating Dolliver had already gone out to the Press 
Association and had to be suppressed by wire. This is the story of 
the vice presidency at Philadelphia, briefly told." 

One of the best estimates of the work and character of Senator 
Dolliver is found in Munsey's Magazine of September, 191 2, and 
reads as follows : 

"It does injustice to none to say that there was but one Dolliver 
in the generation in which he made his record of public service. 
When he died, he was the acknowledged leader of what was then 
known as 'insurgency' within the republican party. 

"The great things of which Dolliver was so large a part when 
they were yet small have moved on and on. We have got far enough 
away from their beginnings to make it hard to realize what a heroic 
figure he was, as he stood in the senatorial forum but three short 
years ago, defying the agents of privilege and 'regularity,' warning 
them that they had entered upon a course in which the nation could 
not and would not follow them. 

"For his answer, he was read out of the party that he had served 
and honored from boyhood; but that was the least of his concerns. 
He knew that the vast majority of the party were with him in senti- 
ment and sympathy; he had confidence that in due time that fact 
would declare itself, and he would be vindicated. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 25 

"It was not the passion of a moment that made DolHver defy and 
flaunt the ruling powers of his party. He had been slow to believe 
that influences of the most reprehensible sort had secured a grip 
upon it that menaced the very spirit of popular institutions. He 
served nearly a quarter of a century in congress, a devoted partv 
man, before he became convinced that the destinies of the nation 
could possibly be insecure in the control of his party. He found, 
on occasion, it is true, that the men who represented his party's 
leadership in legislation were frequently unresponsive when he urged 
upon them policies that he confidently believed to be in the interest 
of the whole country; but still he hesitated to believe that his party, 
as such, had fallen into the control of bad influences, and could no 
longer be trusted. 

"The first awakening came to him in 1906, when he assumed 
congressional leadership of the movement for strengthening the inter- 
state commerce laws. He found the powers of party, or regularity, 
of capitalized privilege, not only in his own party, but in the opposi- 
tion, hostile to that movement. He began to wonder, to surmise, to 
contemplate the possibilities involved in such a situation; but, by dint 
of a magnificent fight, the needed legislation was at last passed, and 
to Dolliver it seemed for the moment a vindication of his theory 
that his own party could finally be trusted to meet any emergency of 
public service. 

"Following closely upon this came the experience of the tariff 
session of 1909. Dolliver believed in a different tariff program than 
that which the party leaders had adopted. He was sincere, and 
believed that his was the only program that any sincere man could 
accept. He could not, this time, bring the ruling coterie to accept his 
views, ^^'eek after week, month after month of that session, Dol- 
liver and the little host that gathered at his back, fought for con- 
cession, and gained none. 

"In the end they were steam-rolled out of the fight, and the law 
was passed as the bosses wanted it. Then Dolliver realized, as he 
had never done before, that there was serious doubt whether his 
party could be trusted. He became frankly, openly insurgent against 
the whole scheme of things, against the entire existing regime of 
the party's government. 

"Patronage was withdrawn, social ostracism was imposed, politi- 
cal destruction was menaced; but Dolliver would not turn back. He 
had at last formed his purpose. The party to which he had given 
his career and his talents must be reformed — from within. 

"That was the message he gave the country in his last public 



26 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

utterances. He used all he possessed of eloquence, of sarcasm, invec- 
tive, irony, appeal, to win a following among the people in congress 
and out, who could see as plainly as he could. He came up to leader- 
ship almost in a day. Other men had been plodding that same path 
for years before he had entered upon it ; but when he became con- 
vinced that his duty carried him along with them, he went to the 
head of the line. He was the great popular figure, the favored orator, 
the Mirabeau of the insurgent movement. 

" 'Here is our real leader," the country first vaguely felt, then 
began to say aloud. 

"It turned to him as the man who could if that lay in any man's 
power, save the republican party and bring it back to the higher ideals 
of its founders. He was strong with party men, because he had 
always been the most loyal of them all. They knew that Dolliver 
would go as far as any to save the party; but they knew, too, that 
he wanted to save it for service to the nation, not as a monument 
of longevity in senility. They believed in him. 

"That is why Dolliver, had he li\ed, would have been the leader 
He occupied the great, big place in the popular imagination. The 
people lo\ed him, believed in him, and rose to those magnificent 
appeals that none so well as he could formulate and deliver. 

"Had he lived, he would, in all human probal)ility, have been 
the nominee of the republican party, this year, for the presidency. 
He was never hated by the men who could not agree with him. He 
would have become the meeting-point of many men and many minds. 
The public would have demanded him ; the organization, weakened 
and fearful, would have yielded. He would have been nominated, 
the party would have substantially united at his back, and he would 
ha\e led it to higher planes, to nobler purposes of true usefulness, 
than it has known in many years. 

"Just on the eve of this magnificent opportunity that almost every- 
Ijody, better than he, saw was opening to him, death came and ended 
it all. He had known for a long while that his hold on life was inse- 
cure : that organic disorders had weakened his heart ; that he might 
go suddenly, and at any time. Knowing that, he never spared him- 
self, never avoided the heat and burden of the day. Rather, he sought 
to do more than his share. 

"But for the excesses of study and effort which he imposed upon 
himself during the tariff session of 1909 and the railroad session of 
1910, Dolliver would probably be alive to-day. He knew the danger 
he was in\iting when he assumed those labors. He gave up his life 
and the brilliant prospect of a triumphant climax to his career, in his 
devotion to what he believed the duty of the hour. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 27 

"He did more than any other man to make the forward movement 
the power it now has become in this nation; and he offered himself 
as the richest sacrifice that was laid on its altar. As truly as ever 
a soldier in the trenches, he gave his life for his country." 

On November 20, 1895, Senator Dolliver was united in marriage 
to Miss Louise Pearsons, a daughter of George R. Pearsons, of Fort 
Dodge. Mrs. Dolliver was born in Vermont but has spent her life 
since she was two years of age in Iowa. She is a graduate of W'el- 
lesley College in the class of 1889, and her intellectual attainments 
were a cooperant factor in her husband's brilliant and useful work 
in the world. Senator and ]\Irs. Dolliver were the parents of three 
children, Margaret Eliza, Frances Pearsons and Jonathan Prentiss. 
On October 15, 1910, Senator Dolliver died. Political opponents 
clasped hands over his grave in the universal brotherhood of sorrow ; 
party lines disappeared before the Grim Reaper and his work is today 
a vital factor in the life of Iowa and of the nation. One of our fore- 
most statesmen, gifted with political ability second to none, his death 
marked the passing of a man who had gained the esteem and love 
of the people of his state, prominence and distinction in America, and 
honor throughout the world. 



JAMES BLAKELY \\ILLIAMS. 

No history of Fort Dodge would be complete without ex- 
tended reference to James Blakely Williams, who was but twelve 
years of age when he first visited the site of the city. It had 
been selected as an army post but it was not until the following 
year that the city was laid out, with his father as one of its 
promoters and incorporators. From that period until his death 
he lived here and his life work became an integral chapter in the 
history of the community. James Blakely Williams was born in 
Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania, May 11, 1836, a son of Major Wil- 
liam Williams and Judith Lloyd ( McConnell) Williams, both of 
whom were natives of Pennsylvania, the birthplace of the latter 
being Huntingdon. Of the five children born to tliem, two sur- 
vived, James Blakely and Mary Augustine, who became the wife 
of J. F. Duncombe. The father. Major Williams, was a l)anker 
in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania, until 1849. when attracted by 
the opportunities and advantages of the growing west, he left 
his native state. He was born in Greensburg, Westmoreland 
county, Pennsylvania, December 6, 1796, and was reared and 



28 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

educated among the frontier men of that period, men who had 
served in the Revolutionary war and had participated in the 
contest with the Indians for the supremacy of the country. In 
early life Major Williams became well versed in military tactics 
and it was his desire to enter upon a military career. When 
sixteen years of age he obtained his father's consent to join the 
army but circumstances arose that made this course impossible. 
He visited both Pittsburg and Carlisle, where schools were es- 
tablished for cavalry and flying artillery. Events, however, 
forced him to turn his attention to a commercial rather than a 
mihtary career and he obtained the position of teller in the 
Westmoreland Bank of Pennsylvania at Greensburg. This was 
one of the forty banks chartered during the administration of 
Governor Snyder. After serving in that capacity for some time 
he resigned his position and began the manufacture of salts on the 
Kiskiminitas river. \\'ith his father's death the responsibility of 
providing for and educating the other children of the family 
devolved upon Major Williams, a burden which he assumed 
willingly, recognizing at once his obligation in that direction. 
About that time he accepted an appointment which gave him 
charge of seven different mercantile establishments, the principal 
one of which was at Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. It was while 
there that he was married on the 19th of August, 1830, to Miss 
Judith Lloyd McConnell. On the completion of the canal he re- 
moved to Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania, where he opened and 
conducted a store, and while there he was tendered the appoint- 
ment of teller of the Exchange Bank of Pittsburg, which position 
he accepted, removing to the latter city. The liank determined to 
establish a branch at Hollidaysburg and Mr. \\ iliiams returned to 
that place to become cashier of the new institution, with wiiich 
he was thus connected for some years. On the 15th of May. 
1842, his wife died and about that time he was tendered the 
command of the Third Regiment in the Fenian cause, intended 
to act in concert with Smith O'Brien in Ireland. Tliis regiment 
was made up mostly of officers and soldiers who had served in 
Mexico. 

On the I2th of February, 1844, Major Williams was again 
married, his second union being with Miss Jeannette J. Quinan, 
a daughter of the Rev. Thomas H. Quinan. of Philadelphia. Tiiey 
continued residents of Pennsylvania until March, 1849. when they 
started for low-a. Major Williams iM-inging out a company of one 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 29 

hundred and forty-one people. Upon arriving at Muscatine he 
found that the Indians were occasioning considerable trouble, 
three companies of United States troops, under command of 
Major Samuel Woods, arriving at Muscatine about that time on 
their way to Indiantown. Being acquainted with the greater 
number of officers. Major Williams accompanied them, taking 
with him his son James Blakely Williams, then a youth of 
twelve years. A site was selected on which to establish a post, 
called Fort Clark, now Fort Dodge, and Major Armstead was 
dispatched with a company of troops to the points designated. 
Major Williams, at the request of General Churchill, Major 
Woods and Captain Caster, went to Fort Snelling, as Governor 
Ramsey was then having difficulty with the Chippewa and Sioux 
Indians, who were collecting their forces for a general war. After 
the soldiers left Fort Dodge, the object of their mission having 
been accomplished, Major Williams opened a sutler's store and 
traded with the Indians. The firm of Henn, Williams & Company 
platted the town, now the city of Fort Dodge and here Major 
Williams resided until his death, which occurred February 26, 
1874. He was not only the founder of the town but one of its 
chief promoters, his labors constituting an important element in 
its substantial growth and improvement for many years. His 
name is inseparably interwoven with its history. Major Williams 
was the first postmaster and the first mayor of Fort Dodge and 
he cooperated in all the various movements which tended to 
advance the interests of the community. During the latter years 
of his life he lived retired, enjoying a well earned and well merited 
rest. A man of liberal education and of high moral character, 
he was also of a genial disposition and kindly spirit. These com- 
bined qualities well fitted him for leadership and he left the im- 
press of his individuality for good upon the community in which 
he made his home. 

James Blakely Williams, son of Major Williams, became a 
resident of Fort Dodge when thirteen years of age. He pursued 
his education under the direction of his father and when the Civil 
war broke out enlisted as a member of Company I, of the Thirty- 
second Iowa Volunteer Infantry, under Major Hutchinson, con- 
tinuing at the front throughout the period of hostilities. He was 
a fine penman, by reason of which he wa.s detailed to act as chief 
clerk at headquarters under General A. J. Smith. Following 
the war he returned to Fort Dodge, where he opened a set of 



30 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

abstract books of the county, and continued in the abstract 
business until his death, having as liis partner his niece, Miss 
Maude Lauderdale, who now owns the books and the business 
and is well known in Webster county as the present incumbent 
in the office of county recorder. Like his father, James B. Wil- 
liams was active in promoting the welfare, upbuilding and progress 
of Fort Dodge along many lines. Li his business atifairs he was 
ever methodical and systematic, his records being accurate and 
reliable, while his books were a marvel of neatness. He was one 
of the best known men in the county and none were held in higher 
regard. 

On the 2d of June, 1862, James B. Williams was married, while 
home from the army on a furlough, to Miss Annie R. Marshall, 
a daughter of Robert and Mary Catharine (Luther) Marshall. 
Mrs. Williams was born in Brooklyn, New York, August 8, 1842, 
and is a granddaughter of Thomas and Fanny (Freelove) 
Marshall, the former a native of England and the latter of New 
York. Both died during the cholera epidemic in that state in 
1838. They were parents of the following named: James, Thomas, 
Mary, Robert. John R., Sarah and Hettie. Of these the first three 
died of cholera. The maternal grandfather of Mrs. Williams was 
John Luther, who married Catherine Baizley. Thev were both 
natives of New York and lived to a ripe old age. 

Robert Marshall, father of Mrs. Williams, was born in New 
York city and while in P.rooklyn was a rope manufacturer, owning 
an extensive factory which covered nine blockj. He removed 
westward in the "60s, making the journey with a companv of 
seventeen people, and settled on the borders of Humboldt and 
Webster counties, where he engaged in farming. Unto him and 
his wife were born thirteen children. Catharine E.. Robert J., 
Thomas A.. Mary Grace, John Luther. Sadie F., Annie R.. John 
Luther H. Margaret Antoinette. William K. and Fannv F.. twins, 
Cornelia Cox and Fanny Freelove H. The father, Robert 
Marshall, died on June 26, 1875. at the age of sixty-seven years, 
and the mother, Mary C. (Luther) Marshall, passed awav October 
7. 1899, at the age of eighty-eight years. 

To Mr. and Mrs. James B. AVilliams were born three children: 
Alired and Robbie Lloyd, both now deceased ; and one, who died 
in infancy. The death of Mr. Williams occurred August 25, 1903. 
when he was sixty-seven years of age. He had been almost a life- 
long resident of \Vebster county and the circle of his friends was 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 31 

almost coextensive with the circle of his acquaintances. He was 
held in the highest regard by reason of his reliability in business, 
his loyalty and progressiveness in citizenship and his devotion to 
family and friends. Mrs. Williams died at Fort Dodge, on August 
15, 1912. 



HON. WILLIAM LARRABEE. 

Indelibly inscribed on the pages of Iowa's history is the name of 
ex-Governor William Larrabee. He has ever been faultless in 
honor, fearless in conduct and stainless in reputation, and his 
record is one which reflects credit and honor upon the state that 
has honored him with its highest office. He was born in Led- 
yard, Connecticut, January 20, 1832, and is a son of Adam Lar- 
rabee, who was also born in Connecticut. His immediate ances- 
tors were English, while those of a more remote period were 
F"rench. Adam Larrabee was a student and graduate of the West 
Point Military Academy and served with distinction in the War 
of 1812, holding the rank of lieutenant. Wounds which he sus- 
tained in that war hastened his death. He married Miss Lester 
and they had a large family. 

William Larrabee was educated in the public schools of Con- 
necticut and at the age of nineteen years began teaching. He 
came to Iowa in 1853, at the age of twenty-one, and for a year 
engaged in teaching school in this state, being thus employed 
near Clermont. He afterward worked on a farm in Clayton 
county, being employed by Judge E. H. Williams as foreman of 
his large farm lying partly in Clayton and partly in Fayette 
counties. In 1857 he bought the flouring mills at Clermont, Iowa, 
and for some years devoted his attention successfully to the manu- 
facture of flour. Later he resumed farming and before many 
years ranked as one of the leading agriculturists and landowners 
of his section of the state. He afterward became interested in 
banking in Clermont and in other cities and as the years went by 
won a substantial measure of success. At the outl^reak of the 
Civil war he made an efifort to enlist in the army but on account 
of physical disability was rejected. It was a matter of great 
grief to him that he could not become a soldier, although he 
made several attempts to do so. He was intensely patriotic 
and manifested his love of country in many ways. 



32 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

On the I2th of September, 1861, Mr. Larrabee was united in 
marriage to Miss Anna Matilda Appelman, also a native of Con- 
necticut, her birth having occurred at Mystic on the 13th of 
August, 1842. She is the eldest child of Gustavus Adolphus 
and Prudence Anna Appelman, whose ancestors were prominent 
in the afifairs of their native province in Germany. Gustavus 
Appelman was widely known as a sea captain, following the sea 
for many years. At length, however, he abandoned that life 
and came to the west to engage in farming. He settled on a farm 
near the village of Clermont, Fayette county, and while living 
there his daughter Anna, who afterward became Mrs. Larra- 
bee, attended the country schools until fourteen years of age. 
She was then sent to Mystic, Connecticut, where she entered an 
academy in which she spent two years. After returning to Cler- 
mont she took up the work of teaching in the village school, which 
had an enrollment of seventy pupils, but the young teacher was 
equal to the task. Her home was about a mile from the village 
and she followed the old Indian trails to and from the town, day 
after day. She had to teach all grades and for her services re- 
ceived a compensation of twenty-five dollars per month. With 
the earnings of a few months she purchased her wedding out- 
fit. For more than fifty years she and her distinguished husband 
have been traveling life's pathway together, sharing each other's 
joys and sorrows. She has been a great help to him and Mr. Lar- 
rabee has ever given her credit in large measure for his suc- 
cessful career. Together they encountered all the hardships of 
pioneer days. At an early period their financial resources were 
limited but they possessed hope, character and ambition. Mrs. 
Larrabee, like her husband, has always kept well informed on 
all pul)lic questions and can discuss intelligently the important 
problems of the day. Moreover, she is thoroughly a home woman 
and presides with gracious hospitality over Montauk, their 
beautiful home. 

The history of William Larral)ee constitutes an important 
chapter in the history of Iowa. He has always taken a deep and 
helpful interest in government afYairs. In 1867 he was elected to 
represent his district in the state senate and remained a member 
thereof for eighteen years. The record of scarcely any man 
in public life in Iowa has extended over a longer period and no 
one has been more commendable, honorable and useful. The re- 
publican party named him as its candidate for governor in 1885 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 33 

and the people of the state supported liini not only in that year 
but again in 1887. His administration ranks among the strongest 
that Iowa has had. His name was frequently mentioned for 
United States senator and he could have had the office for the 
asking but always declined the honor. 

On the i^tli of September, 191 1, Mr. and Mrs. Larrabee cele- 
brated their golden wedding anniversary. They are the parents 
of three sons and four daughters, all of whom are living, with 
the exception of Augusta, who was the wife of Victor B. DoUiver. 
The others are: Julia, the wife of Don L. Love, of Lincoln, Ne- 
braska; Anna; \\'illiani, of Clermont; Frederic, of Fort Dodge, 
mentioned elsewhere in this volume ; Helen, the wife of C. B. 
Robbins, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa ; and Charles, living at Fort 
Dodge. The specific and distinctive office of biography is not 
to give voice to a man's modest estimate of himself and his ac- 
complishments but rather to leave the perpetual record establish- 
ing his character by the consensus of public opinion on the part 
of his fellowmen. Throughout Iowa, William Larrabee is spoken 
of in terms of admiration and respect. His life has been so 
varied, so honorable in its purpose and so far-reaching and benefi- 
cial in its efifects that it has become an integral part of the history 
of the west and has left a deep impress upon the state of Iowa. 
Since the aJDOve was written Governor Larrabee passed away, 
November 16, 19 12. 



PROFESSOR JOHN F. MONK. 
Professor John F. Monk is one of the proprietors of Tobin 
College of Fort Dodge, Iowa, and has spent many years in the 
chair of language in that institution. He has gained prominence 
as a linguist and as a cultured scholar. His active connection 
with the college has lasted for many years and has been of aid 
to bring about its systematic efficiency. Under his able adminis- 
tration the institution has grown and has constantly broadened 
its field of activity and increased the facilities it offers its students. 
Professor Monk was born in Springford, Ontario, Canada, De- 
cember 8, 1865, and is a son of Simon N. and Frances A. (In- 
gram) Monk, both natives of Canada. The family is of German' 
origin, and has been founded in America for many generations. 
It was represented in the Revolutionary war by the great-grand- 
father of our subject, who served under General Washington 



34 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

as captain of artillery for seven years. In the next generation 
the family residence was removed from the United States to 
Canada and here Simon Monk, the father of our subject, was 
born. He engaged in agriculture and cultivated many acres of 
land until 1867, when he removed with his family to Iowa and 
located in Cedar county. He was one of the earliest settlers of 
this district and was entirely responsible for the high degree of 
cultivation to which he brought his land before his death. 

He, by his career as an agriculturist, was a developing force in 
the progress of civilization. He made all the improvements upon 
his holdings, and in conjunction with his brother built the struc- 
tures which protected his grain and furnished shelter for his stock. 
He furnished his house with goods brought through from Canada 
by team, and continued to operate his farm until 1901, when he 
retired from active life and removed to Tipton where he now 
resides. He is in the seventy-first year of his age and has sur- 
vived his wife for two years, her death having occurred in May, 
1910. 

John F. Monk was reared at home and received his early educa- 
tion in the district schools of Cedar county. He subsequently 
entered the high school of Tipton and was graduated with honors 
after a four years' course. He made good use of his advantages 
and utilized every opportunity of an educational kind. He early 
showed the scholarly bent of his mind and was intensely inter- 
ested in e\erything which made for a broader culture and more 
representative learning. He entered \'alparaiso University at 
Valparaiso, Indiana, and was graduated from the liberal arts 
course of that institution in 1891. He immediately engaged in 
teaching and accepted a position at Panola College at Carthage, 
Texas, where he remained for a short period. His professional 
career then brought him to Mason City, Iowa, where he taught 
for one year before he came to Fort Dodge to accept the position 
as professor of languages in Tobin College. At the time of Pro- 
fessor Monk's original identification with this institution Mr. 
Tobin was in active control of its policies and continued his con- 
nection with it until his death in 1890. In that year Professor 
Monk, in conjunction with Mr. Findlay. purchased the property 
and they have controlled and directed the rapidly developing col- 
lege since that time. Professor Monk is still active in the de- 
partment of languages, but also gives his organizing mind and his 
power of direction and control to the management of the busi- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 35 

ness end of the enterprise. Under his able administration the 
institution has grown from a small beginning to a comparatively 
large educational enterprise. It enrolled four hundred students 
in 1912, and each year brings a substantial increase in this num- 
ber. It is one of the forces in the educational world of the middle 
west, and the efficiency of its curi^eulum and the thorough equip- 
ment which it gives to its students have made its name a synonym 
for all that is important and useful in educational circles. Much 
of this prominence and prosperity are tlue to the well directed and 
concentrated efforts of Professor Monk who unites in his char- 
acter the qualities of an upright and honorable business man 
with those of a cultured and deeply read scholar. 

In August, 1892, Professor Monk was united in marriage to 
Miss Helen M. Anderson, a daughter of James N. and Margaret 
(Dougallj Anderson, both natives of Pennsylvania and both 
tracing their ancestral line to Scotland. At an early date the 
father purchased a farm in Cedar county. Iowa, which he im- 
proved and operated for many years prior to his retirement. He 
removed to Blount Vernon in order to give his three daughters 
the educational advantages offered by that city and made this 
his home until his death which occurred in 1900. After his de- 
mise his widow came to Fort Dodge, Iowa, and bought a com- 
fortable and commodious home in this city, where she is now re- 
siding in the seventy-third year of her age. Professor Monk and 
his wife are the parents of four children : Florence G., a graduate 
of the Fort Dodge high school, who is eighteen years of age ; Mel- 
ville A., whose birth occurred in 1895; Dorothy H., wdio was born 
in 1897: and John J., who is thirteen years of age. 

Professor Monk's increasing distinction in the educational 
field has brought him recognition in many different lines. He 
has arduous duties as head of an im])ortant department in his 
college and his increasing responsibilities in its business manage- 
ment absorb almost his entire attention. He, however, finds time 
to be of able and effective service as president of the Chautauqua 
assembly and to his well directed management and his conspicu- 
ous organizing ability this institution owes much of its present 
success. He is also a director of the Fort Dodge Commercial 
Club and president of the official board of the Methodist church. 
to which he and his family give allegiance. Politically he be- 
longs to the republican party and keeps himself w'ell abreast 
of the times upon national and local issues. His educational 



36 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

career, however, absorbs most of his energies and his best and 
most efficient work is done in that field. The quality of his at- 
tainment along this line manifests the realization of his responsibilities 
toward his pupils and toward educational circles at large. 
He labors incessantly to make his college broad and to develop 
it along cultural lines. He has won succees in his ambitious 
endeavors and his prosperity lies along the road of well directed 
efifort. 



CLEM A. BOHXEXKAMP. 

Clem A. Bohnenkamp, proprietor and editor of The Buncombe 
Tribune, is one of Iowa's native sons, his birth having occurred in 
Carroll county, on the 23d of February, 1877. His parents are 
John H. and Caroline (Bruning) Bohnenkamp, natives, respec- 
tively, of Germany and Wisconsin. The father emigrated to the 
United States in his boyhood with his parents, who located in 
Delaware county, Iowa. There he was reared to manhood and 
educated, subsequently engaging in farming for a year. At the 
expiration of that time he engaged in the live-stock business in 
Breda, this state, with which he was identified for fifteen years. 
He then disposed of his interests in this connection and opened 
a meat market in the same place, which he is still conducting. 
The mother is also living. Tiiey are the parents of ten living 
children, eight sons and two daughters. 

Reared at home, the education of Clem A. Bohnenkamp was 
obtained in the public schools of Breda, Carroll county, which he 
attended until graduated at the age of fourteen years. Upon 
the termination of his student days he learned the printer's trade 
and also qualified himself for a newspaper career. Diligent and 
enterprising, he early manifested unusual business ability and at 
the age of seventeen years bought out the Breda Watchman, a 
weekly journal, which he successfully edited for fifteen years. At 
the expiraion of that time he removed with his plant to Duncombe 
and. in May, 1909, established and issued the first copy of_ The 
Duncombe Tribune. It is a clean, wholesome, newsy sheet and 
independent in politics. Although it has only been founded 
three years, the Tribune has a large and constantly increasing 
circulation, as it stands for progress and enthusiastically cham- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 37 

pions every movement which will tend to promote the develop- 
ment of the community or advance the interests of the town. Mr. 
Bohnenkamp has a well equipped plant for a town of the size and 
is prepared to do all kinds of job work, of which he makes a 
specialty. 

Mr. Bohnenkamp has been twice married, his first union hav- 
ing been with Miss Christina Ricke, a daughter of Richard and 
Mary Ricke, the event being celebrated on the 15th of February, 
1898. Five children were born of this marriage, as follows: 
Richard, who is twelve years of age; Drusiila, who is eight; Lil- 
lian, who died in 1904, at the age of a year and a half ; one who 
died at the age of six months in 1907; and one who died in infancy. 
Mrs. Bohnenkamp is also deceased, having passed away in Feb- 
ruary, 1909, after an illness of three months. On January 6, 
1910, Mr. Bohnenkamp married Miss Josephine Meder, a daugh- 
ter of J. H. and Mary Meder, natives of Texas. 

Mr. and Mrs. Bohnenkamp are members of the Roman Cath- 
olic church, and fraternally he belongs to the Knights of Colum- 
bus and the Modern ^^'oodmen of America. He supports the 
democratic party and while living in Breda served for several 
years as city clerk. He takes an active interest in all local enter- 
prises and is secretary of the Farmers Cooperative Elevator Com- 
pany of Duncombe. Mr. Bohnenkamp is a most desirable citizen 
and takes an active interest in the development of the town, 
where he owns his residence and a thriving business. 



TAMES CAMPBELL. 



James Campliell, who is the successful owner and manager of a 
brick and tile i)lanl at Lehigh, was born in ^Manhattan, Illinois, May 
4, 1863. He was reared in Manhattan and in early youth worked on 
a farm in that district, where he remained until he removed to Iowa, 
locating in Lehigh. Here he became interested in the enterprise 
which he now owns, a brick and tile factory, which was opened in 
October, 1901, under the firm name uf Straight & Campbell, his 
partner being W. .\. Straight. In January, 1904, Mr. Campbell i)ur- 
chased the interest of Mr. Straight and Uiuk over the management 
of the factory. He improved and enlarged the plant so that its out- 
put was greatly increased. The factory has a steam dryer and turns 



38 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

out a high grade of brick and tile and our subject employs about 
thirty-five men. The brickyard occupies about nineteen acres of 
land, which is under two roofs, and it is equipped with an electric 
light plant. Mr. Campbell has other interests also, being president 
of the Alberta Clay & Pottery Company of ]\Iedicine Hat, Canada. 
In 1904, James Campbell was united in marriage to Miss Viola 
Marsh, a native of this county, and a daughter of George W. Marsh, 
who is deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Campbell are the parents of one son, 
George A., who was born December 17, 1908. In his political views 
Mr. Campbell is democratic but he never has sought or cared for 
public office. He is a successful business man and has worked his 
way upward until he is today accounted one of the prosperous citizens 
of Lehigh. He is practical and systematic and has gained that 
measure of success which usually follows earnest, persistent and well 
directed labor. He has a wide circle of acquaintances and stands high 
in the regard of all who know him. 



FLOYD BENJAMIN OLNEY, M. D. 

Dr. Floyd Benjamin Olney, who occupies a foremost position 
in professional ranks in Webster county, is a well known physi- 
cian and surgeon of Fort Dodge, where he has practiced continu- 
ously for more than three decades. His birth occurred in South 
Toledo, Ohio, on the 20th of November, 185 1, his parents being 
Dr. Stephen B. and Stella (Badger) Olney, the former a nati\e of 
Saratoga, New York, and the latter of Painesville, Ohio. The 
first representative of the family in this country was Thomas 
Olney, who came from England in 1631. locating in Massachu- 
setts and subsecjuently going with Roger Williams to Rhode 
Island, where he afterward succeeded the latter in the ministry. 
Benjamin Olney. the paternal grandfather of our subject, was a 
native of Rhode Island and a farmer by occupation. The mater- 
nal grandfather was born in Massachusetts. 

Stephen Berry Olney, the father of Dr. F. B. Olney, was a 
youth of twelve years when he removed with his parents to north- 
western Ohio and was there reared to manhood on a farm. He 
later studied medicine and surgery, jjracticing first in South To- 
ledo, Ohio, and subsecjuently spending a short time at Adrian, 
Michigan. In the spring of 1855 he came to Fort Dodge. Iowa, 




J73. 





HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 41 

and here successfully practiced his profession until 1888. From 
1862 until 1865 he did valuable service for the Union as surgeon 
of the Thirty-second Iowa Volunteer Infantry. In 1890 he re- 
moved to Hammonton, New Jersey, where he passed away on the 
31st of March, 1891, when sixty-nine years of age. His widow 
then returned to Fort Dodge but later took up her abode at 
Clarkston, Washington, and in 1908 removed to Modesto, Cali- 
fornia, where she died in 1909 at the age of eighty-seven years. 
Dr. Stephen Olney was a Baptist in religious faith and his wife 
was a Presbyterian. There being no churches of those denomina- 
tions in Fort Dodge, they became affiliated with the Episcopali- 
ans. After her husband's demise Mrs. Olney returned to the 
Presbyterian church but she died in the Adventists' faith. Dr. 
Olney was republican in his political views, served as one of the 
early officers of the Fort Dodge school board and was also a 
prominent Mason. To him and his wife were born five children, 
as follows: Floyd Benjamin, of this review; Edith Adelaide, the 
wife of Thaddeus Green, of Pomona. California; Charles Crary 
Olney, who is a resident of ConconoUy, Washington ; Edward B., 
of Washington, D. C. ; and Mary Elizabeth, an osteopathic physi- 
cian of Pomeroy, Washington. 

Floyd B. Olney was four years of age when brought to Fort 
Dodge by his parents and has here resided continuously since, 
with the exception of about ten years. He attended the public 
schools and was a member of the first graduating class from the 
high school. After putting aside his text-books he learned the 
printer's trade and as a representative of the "art preservative" 
worked on a number of city papers, including the Chicago Trib- 
une. Later he devoted his attention to the study of medicine 
and in 1881 was graduated from the Hahnemann Medical CoUeg'e 
of Chicago. Fort Dodge has been the scene of his professional 
labors throughout the intervening period of thirty-one years, and 
the extensive practice accorded him is unmistakable proof of his 
skill and ability in the line of his chosen vocation. He is a mem- 
ber of the Webster County Medical Society and the Iowa State 
Medical Society, and thus keeps in close touch with the progress 
of the profession. 

• On the 5th of April, 1877, Dr. Olney was united in marriage 
to Miss Hattie Elizabeth Greig, a native of Nunda, New York, 
and a daughter of Alexander W. and Melinda (George) Greig, 
who were born in New York and New Hampshire respectively. 



42 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

The paternal grandfather of Mrs. Olney was George Greig. Mr. 
and Mrs. Alexander W. Greig were the parents of one son and 
four daughters, namely: Hattie, Mattie, Carrie. Georgia and 
Charles D. Unto Dr. and Mrs. Olney have been born four chil- 
dren, as follows: Kate, who died in 1899 when twenty years of 
age; Anne, who is a graduate of Michigan University at Ann 
Arbor and is now a teacher of Latin and German in the Burling- 
ton high school ; Elizabeth, who is the wife of Nathan Barr Jone? 
and resides in St. Maries, Idaho; and Doris, who is the wife o 
Benjamin Harrison Merritt and lives on a farm near Hereford, 
Colorado. 

Dr. Olney gives his political allegiance to the republican party 
and served as pension surgeon for a number of years. Fraternally 
he is identified with the Masons, belonging to Ashlar Lodge, No. 
Ill, F. & A. M. ; Delta Chapter, No. 51, R. A. M. ; and Calvary 
Commandery, No. 24, K. T. He is likewise connected with the 
Red Men and the Woodmen of the World. Both Dr. Olney and 
his wife are members of the Christian church, the former acting 
as church trustee. In all the relations of life he has stood as a 
man among men, accepting no false standards, holding to high 
ideals and exemplifying his synipathy with the world's progress in 
his own life. 



ARTHUR C. LINDBERG. 

On the roster of county officials in Webster county appears 
the name of Arthur C. Lindberg, who is filling the position of 
treasurer. On the whole the county has been signally favored 
in the class of men who have occupied its public offices, for they 
have been loyal to the interests entrusted to their care and have 
sought the welfare of the many rather than of the few. A repre- 
sentative of this class is Mr. Lindberg, who is one of Iowa's native 
sons, his birth having occurred in Dayton, March 19, 1879. The 
family comes of Swedish ancestry. John A. Lindberg, the 
grandfather, was a native of Sweden and became an early settler 
of Knox county, Illinois, whence he removed to Webster county 
in 1854. He cast his lot with its early settlers and followed the 
occupation of farming. Both he and his wife lived to a ripe old 
age and they reared four children, including Mary, Lenore and 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 43 

John A. Lindberg. The last named was born m Knox county, 
Illinois, but was reared upon the homestead farm in Webster 
county, early becoming familiar with all of the experiences and 
incidents of frontier life. He supplemented his early education 
by a course in the State University of Iowa and was graduated 
from its law department. He practiced law for a time but turned 
his attention to newspaper publication in the '70s, becoming owner 
and publisher of the Dayton Review at Dayton, Iowa. He re- 
mained at the head of that paper until 1894, when he sold out and 
he has since given his attention to financial and real-estate Inter- 
ests, having throughout the intervening period been president of 
the Farmers State Bank of Dayton. He engaged in the real- 
estate, loan and insurance business there and has a large clientage 
that makes his business a profitable one. His judgment is sound 
and his discrimination keen, while his enterprise is unfaltering. 
He votes with the republican party and for thirty years has served 
as justice of the peace. AVhat higher proof could be given of 
faithful and efticient service in ofirce ? He has also served as 
mayor of Dayton for a number of terms, giving to the city a 
business-like and public-spirited administration which has brought 
about various useful reforms and improvements. He married 
Amelia A. Brundien, a native of Knox county, Illinois, where 
her parents settled at an early date. Her family became early 
residents of Webster county and her father followed farming near 
Dayton. He was killed in a runaway accident when he and one 
of his daughters were on their way to Fort Dodge. He was, at 
that time, about fifty years of age. His wife lived to be more 
than eighty years of age. In their family were but two children. 
Peter and Amelia. Mr. and j\Irs. John A. Lindberg had two chil- 
dren : Clarence J., a resident of Edna, Texas; and Arthur C. 

Arthur C. Lindberg was reared in Dayton and attended the 
public schools there. The experiences of his youth were such as 
most boys have, and with the completion of his education he 
turned his attention to the business world in search of a position 
that would yield him a good living. In 1896 he entered the 
Farmers State Bank of Dayton as bookkeeper and was later 
assistant cashier. On the ist of January, 1907, he became deputy 
county treasurer under Peter Hadley and he was elected county 
treasurer in November, 1910, assuming the duties of the position 
on the 1st of January following, so that he is now the incumbent 
in that office. His previous experience as deputy well qualified 



44 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

him for his duties in this connection and he is making: an ex- 
cellent record for efificiency. For several years he was city clerk 
at Dayton. 

Arthur C. Lindberg holds membership with the Knights of 
Pythias, the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, the Improved 
Order of Red Men and the Ancient Order of United Workmen 
and he is secretary of the local Country Club. His political alle- 
giance is given the republican party and he is popular and w-ell 
liked wherever known. He has a wide acquaintance in this 
county, where his entire life has been passed, and the record he 
is making is a creditable one. 



EDWARD E. HASTINGS, D. D. 

Dr. Edward E. Hastings, who has been pastor of the First 
Presbyterian church for the past five years, is one of the most highly 
esteemed and influential citizens of Fort Dodge. He was born at 
Carroll, Iowa, on the 25th of September, 187 1, and is a son of E. R. 
and Kate M. (Manning) Hastings. The father was a native of 
Ohio, whence he removed to Wisconsin, coming from there to 
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in the early '60s. He completed his education 
at Western College, Western, Iowa, and was subsequently admitted 
to the bar, but soon withdrew from the law and turned his attention 
to newspaper work, following this during the remainder of his life. 
During the early period of his journalistic career he purchased a 
half interest in the "Carroll Herald," Carroll, Iowa, later becoming 
the sole proprietor. He was a man of tine mental attainments and 
a forceful writer, and readily became recognized as one uf tiie 
foremost newspaper men in northwestern Iowa. He always took an 
active interest in political affairs and became one of the republican 
leaders in that section of the state, his paper heartily indorsing and 
championing the principles of this party. \\'hile still in his prime. 
Mr. Hastings was compelled to give up his work owing to failing 
health, and sold the Herald to John B. Hungerford. the present 
owner. He continued to make his home in Carroll, however, and 
there he passed away in 1886. He was one of the most widely 
known men in the county, as in addition to editing his paper he 
ser\-ed as postmaster at Carroll for twelve years, discharging the 
duties of this office in a highly efficient and capable manner. The 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 45 

mother, who is a native of Indiana, is still living and now makes her 
home with our subject. 

Dr. Hastings was reared amid the refining influences of a good 
home, and from early childhood had the advantages of an intellectual 
and cultured environment. At the usual age he entered the public 
schools of Carroll, continuing his studies there until graduated from 
high school. In the autumn, following, he entered Coe College at 
Cedar Rapids, being awarded the degree of Ph. B. from this institu- 
tion with the class of 1893. Having decided to become a minister, 
he subsequently matriculated in the McCormick Theological Semi- 
nary at Chicago, having been licensed by the Cedar Rapids Pres- 
bytery and received as a student for the ministry from the First 
Presbyterian church of Cedar Rapids, of which Dr. E. R. Burk- 
holder w^as then pastor. Dr. Hastings graduated from the semi- 
nary in 1896 and w^as ordained by the Presbytery of Sioux Citv, 
Iowa. He began his ministerial duties as pastor of the church 
at Odebolt, Iowa, remaining there for four years. During the 
period of his pastorate he greatly increased the menil)ership of 
the church and erected and dedicated a beautiful new house of 
worship. From there he went to Inwood, Lyon county, but he 
resigned his cliarge eighteen months later in order to accept a 
call to the First Presbyterian church of Grundy Center, Iowa, 
which is in the \\'aterloo Presbytery. In 1907, Dr. Hastings 
came to Fort Dodge, as pastor of the First church of this city. 
The possessor of rare spiritual and mental qualities, a pleasing 
personality and fine presence, he has proven to be a most in- 
fluential factor in the community and is accomplishing excel- 
lent results. His discourses are scholarly and highly creditable 
achievements, manifesting careful preparation and deep thinking; 
their power being greatly increased by his able delivery. He has one 
of the largest congregations in the city, and the church and its 
various organizations are thri\-ing. the work of the dift'erent depart- 
ments being carried on in a most enthusiastic and capable manner 
under his leadersliii>. 

At Carroll, Iowa, on the 23rd of October. 1894, Dr. Hastings 
was united in marriage to Miss May T. Bailey, a former school antl 
college mate, and a daughter of Dr. T. S. and Helen (Gee) Bailey. 
Dr. Bailey is a native of Ohio and was educated at the Ohio State 
University at Columbus, being a member of the class of '69. He 
subsequently entered the Presbyterian Ministry and held many 
important charges in r)hi(> and Iowa, and for sixteen years was 



46 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

synodical superintendent of home missions of the Presbyterian church 
of Iowa. He made his home in Carroll for some years, but he has 
now retired and he and his wife are residing in Cedar Rapids. Dr. 
Bailey is an honored veteran of the Civil war, having remained at 
the front from the opening of hostilities until honorably discharged 
after the close of the siege of Vicksburg. where he lost an arm. 
Dr. and Mrs. Hastings have three children, all of whom are stu- 
dents of the public schools. In order of birth they are as fol- 
lows: Eugene, who is fifteen years of age; Robert, who has 
passed the thirteenth anniversary of his birth ; and Catherine, 
who is looking forward to her tenth birthday. 

Mrs. Hastings is a very active church worker and has been of 
invaluable assistance to her husband in the discharge of his multi- 
tudinous duties. She is a mem1>er of the Wahkonsa Club, and is 
interested in promoting the intellectual development of the com- 
munity. The political views of Dr. Hastings coincide with the 
principles of the republican party, but he very often casts an inde- 
pendent ballot at municipal elections, considering that it is more a 
question of the man best adapted for the ofiice than of political 
issues. He was chosen as a member of the board of trustees of 
Coe College in 1902, and three years later his alma mater honored 
him with the degree of doctor of divinity. He is now and has been 
for some time secretary of the Synodical Board of Iowa 'Home 
Missions of the Presbyterian church, and he has held other positions 
of responsibility and trust in connection with the various organiza- 
tions of the church. Dr. Hastings has acquired much more than a 
local reputation and is numbered among the most scholarly and able 
ministers in this section of the state. 



JOHX D. DWYER. 

The present mayor of Barnum is John D. Dwyer, a type of 
public official who is a force in the growth and development of 
the community. He is one of the sterling and substantial citizens 
of Webster county and for many years was successful as general 
agriculturist and stock-raiser, although he has now definitely 
aliandoned this phase of occupation and has taken up his resi- 
dence in Barnum, where he has a comfortable and attractive 
lionic. yiv. Dwyer was born in Ireland. February 14, 184T. and is 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 47 

a son of Joliu and Johannah {Dee) Dwyer, also natives of the 
Emerald isle. The father was a farmer and came to this country 
m 1851, settling- first in Clinton county, New York, where he 
bought and improved a farm which he operated until the end 
of his life. He died in June, 1863, and was survived by his wife 
until 1906, when she died at the age of ninety-three years. 

John Dwyer attended the public schools of his native country 
untd he was ten years of age, completing his education in Ver- 
mont. After laying aside his books he learned the trade of car- 
pentering, working at that occupation for a number of years in 
Xew York, Michigan, Iowa and Illinois. He eventually went to 
Fort Dodge, Iowa, locating in that city in 1869. Here he worked 
at his trade until 1871, when he went to Chicago, Illinois, on 
account of work to be obtained there, as result of the great fire. 
Here he followed carpentering for two years, going to New York 
at the end of that time and spending one year in the latter city. 
He then returned to Webster county, where he bought eighty 
acres of land in Johnson township, to which he later added at 
various times until he owned two hundred and eighty acres. 
He was also the proprietor of a fine farm of one hundred and sixty 
acres in South Dakota. For fourteen years he carried on general 
agricultural pursuits upon a tract of land in Webster county and 
met with a gratifying degree of success at that occupation and at 
stock-raising, which he subsequently added to his activities. In 
1891, however, he retired and moved to Barnum, where he pur- 
chased thirty-seven acres of town property and upon it built a 
beautiful and modern home, where he has resided since that 
time. He is interested in the growth and development of the 
village and is always eager to do his part in promoting it, and is 
ranked among the progressive, substantial and enterprising cit- 
izens of his district. 

Mr. Dwyer was married in October, 1875, to Miss Mary O'Neal, 
who was born in Troy, New York, and a daughter of Timothy 
and Honora fRyan) O'Neal, natives of Ireland. The parents 
came to this country at an early date and settled in Clinton 
county. New York, where the father farmed until his death, which 
occurred in 1871. His wife survived him by three years. They 
had six children besides the wife of our subject, of whom all grew 
to maturity and two sons are now living. .Mr. and Mrs. Dwyer 
ha\e two daughters: Alice S., who attended St. Joseph's Acad- 
emy at Des Moines, Iowa: and Mary L., attending Corpus Christi 



48 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Academy of Fort Dodge. Mr. and Mrs. Dwyer are well known 
and highly respected citizens of Barnum and are highly esteemed 
for the kindly and charitable impulses which have been forces 
in their lives. 

Mr. Dwyer is prominent in local republican politics. He served 
as assessor of Johnson township for four terms and also as trus- 
tee and school director. He was elected mayor of Barnum in 
1909 and is still serving, discharging his duties in a prompt and 
capable manner, which has won him uniform commendation and 
approval. All movements which tend to promote the public wel- 
fare receive his sanction and support and he stands as one of 
the progressive residents of the city. 



A. J. EKFELT. 

A. J. Ekfelt, who lives retired in Burnside, has served as justice 
of the peace of Burnside township for eighteen years. He was born 
in the central part of Sweden, April 18, 1835. He there received a 
practical education and in 1868, with his family, came to America, 
making his way direct to Iowa and locating in Des Aloines. In that 
citv he worked by the day for ten years and then remo\ed to Day- 
ton, Iowa, and engaged in fanning for about eleven years. Subse- 
quently he came to Burnside township, locating west of Burnside, 
on a tract of one hundred and sixty acres of lanil, and residing there 
until 1908, when he sold the farm and retired to the town of Burn- 
side. where he now lives. His son resides on the old home farm. 
Mr. Ekfelt was very successful in farming and is. therefore, enjoying 
a comfortable competence. 

In Sweden Mr. Ekfelt was united in marriage to Miss Mary 
Carlson, a native of that country, and they have become the parents 
of four children : .\ndrew, of Burnside, and Ellen, of Des Moines, 
both of whom were born in Sweden: and Henry and Emil, both of 
whom were born in Des Moines. In his political views Mr. Ekfelt 
is a republican and he has served on several occasions as juryman 
at Fort Dodge. Iowa. For the past eighteen years he has been 
justice of the peace of Burnside tnwnshii). He has ever taken an 
active and help^jil interest in educational advancement and for 
sixteen years was a member of the school board of Burnside town- 
ship. F'raternally he is identified with the Independent Order of 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 49 

Odd Fellows at Kalo, Iowa. Mr. Ekfelt has resided in tliis coun- 
try for more than forty-four years and throughout that time has 
been an active, helpful and hislily honored citizen, who well 
deserves mention in this volume. 



BERT BL.VIXE BURNQUIST. 

Bert Blaine Burnquist is well known as an able lawxer and his 
name is also on the roster of county officials for in the fall of 
1910 he was elected to the position of county attorney. Webster 
county claims him as one of her native sons, his birth having 
occurred in Dayton on the ist of May, 1884. His parents were 
Samuel and Caroline (Peterson) Burncjuist, both of whom were 
natives of Sweden. The former was a son of Andrew and Cath- 
arine A. Burnquist, farming people of Sweden, who. on coming 
to the new world settled in Dayton, Iowa, where both passed 
away, the former reaching the age of four score years, while 
the latter was eighty-seven years of age at the time of her demise. 
They had two sons, John A. and Samuel. The latter was a lad 
of twelve or thirteen years when the family sailed to the United 
States, and after living for a time in Illinois became a resident of 
Iowa. He spent a few years on a farm in the vicinity of Dayton 
and then, turned his attention to general merchandising, which 
he followed in Dayton to the time of his death. He passed away 
m 1895 '^t the age of forty-five years, and his wife is still sur- 
viving him, and makes her home in Fort Dodge. She holds 
membership in the Lutheran church to which her husband also 
belonged. At the time of his death Sanniel Burn(|uist was a 
member (jf the Iowa legislature. His interest in public affairs 
ever was that of a citizen who stood for progress and improve- 
ment. In early manhood he wedded Caroline Peterson, a native 
of Sweden, and they became the parents of two sons who reached 
adult age, Samuel A. and Bert B. .\fter the death of her first 
husband Mrs. Burnquist married Frank .^. Dowd, but she is again 
a widow. She is a daughter of S. P. and Mary Peterson, natives 
of Sweden. Her father engaged in farming nnlil lie retired from 
business activities in his later years. He came with his family 
to Iowa about 1866 and died in Dayton at the age of eighty-one. 
while his \\'ifc passed awav at the age n( seventy years. They 



50 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

had six cliiklren : Charles; John P.; Jonas; Caroline; Ida, who 
married Henry Oleson ; and ]\Iary, who died in early life. 

Bert B. Burnquist was reared in Dajton, Iowa, and in 1898 
came to Fort Dodge, where he has since made his home. He at- 
tended the public schools in both cities and was graduated from 
the Fort Dodge high school with the class of 1901. Desirous 
of entering upon a professional career he recognized the fact 
that the first step in that direction w'as the acquirement of a still 
broader education and accordingly he entered the University of 
Iowa, completing a course in the collegiate department in 1905. 
He was graduated from the law school in 1907 and in the same 
}"ear was admitted to the bar, after which he opened an office in 
Fort Dodge, where he has since practiced. He is a member of the 
law- firm, Healy, Burnquist & Thomas. He prepares his cases 
with thoroughness and care and has won favorable criticism for 
the systematic methods which he uses. In the fall of 1910 he was 
elected county attorney and he is still acting in that capacity. He 
has business interests aside from his profession, being a director 
of the Farmers State Bank of Dayton, the secretary of the Iowa 
Grocer}- Company, wholesalers, and the owner of a farm of two 
luuidrcd and fortv acres of rich and productive land in Boone 
county. Iowa. His judgment in financial, commercial and agri- 
cultural affairs is accurate and the analytical turn of his mind 
enables him readily to understand the features of every situation, 
business or otherwise. 

Bert Blaine Burnquist belongs to Ashley Lodge, F. & A. M. : 
Delta Chapter. R. A. M. ; Calvary Commandery. K. T, ; and Za- 
Ga-Zig Tcniiilc of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine. He is also 
connected with the .\ncieiU Order of I'nited ^\'clrkmen and with 
the Red Men and his political allegiance has been gi\-en to the 
republican party since age conferred upon him the right of 
franchise. 



ARM. WIS FREY PATTOX. 

'I'lic n.iine of Patton is recognized and honored in e\ery com- 
munity where representatives of the same settled and it is highly 
esteemed because each succeeding generation has upheld the 
traditions and standards which have made their lives upright 



' HISTORY OF WEUSTER COUNTY 51 

■and their characters worthy. At the present time Armanis Frey 
Patton is living in Gowrie, where he is well known as a journalist 
and business man. The family record begins with Robert Pat- 
ton, the grandfather of our subject, who was born in Pennsylvania 
in iSiS and who emigrated to Ohio with his parents when he was 
still a boy. A short time afterward his father died and he was 
obliged to earn his own living. He chose the blacksmith's trade 
for his life work and followed it for a number of years. When 
the Ci\il war broke out he enlisted at Belle Center, Ohio, in 
Company D, Forty-Fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry and served 
until June 12, 1865, when he was mustered out at Camp Harker, 
Tennessee. He was with Wolford's cavalry on the famous Mor- 
gan raid and helped in the capture of Morgan. He was also 
present at the siege of Kno.xville, Tennessee, and served during 
the Atlanta campaign. He married for the first time Miss Martha 
Hull, a daughter of Nathaniel and Nancy (Wyat) Hull, of Waldo, 
Marion county, Ohio. To this union were born thirteen children: 
E\-aline, Nathaniel Hull, William Henry Harrison, James Elias, 
Emily, Elizabeth, Murry Buck, Ellen, Emaline, Charles, Emma, 
Martha, and one who was born dead. Mrs. Patton died at 
Bloom field, Ohio, June 8, 1856, when she was thirty-seven years 
of age. 

The fourth child born to Robert Patton and his wife, James 
Elias Patton, was the father of the subject of this sketch. He 
was born in W'aldo, Marion county, Ohio, April 28, 1841, and 
moved with his parents when he was three years of age to Wood- 
Ijury, Ohio, whence three or four years later they went to Bloom- 
field, ^Morrow county, in the same state. When he was about 
twelve years of age he began to learn the blacksmith's trade from 
his father and continued to work at his chosen occu])ali()n until 
after he moved to Centerville, Ohio. On April 18, tX()I, he en- 
listed in Company G, Third Ohio Volunteer Infantry, at Columbus, 
for ninety days. Through some misunderstanding with the colonel 
of the regiment he was sent home on a thirty day furlougli to 
await his discharge and during this period joined the regular 
army, being the second man to enlist in the Eighteenth l"nited 
States Regulars, being mustered in July 9, 1861. He served two 
terms as a member of this regiment and received his final dis- 
charge at Fort Saimders, Dakota territory, October 5, 1S67. He 
was out of the service from July 9, 1864. to October 5th of the 
same vear. He participated in many of the ])rincipal engagements 



52 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

of the Civil war, among which may be mentioned those of Mill 
Springs, Kentucky; the siege of Corinth; the battles of Houver 
Gap (Tennessee), Stone River, Chickamauga, Missionary^ Ridge; 
and all the battles of the Atlanta campaign, which occurred be- 
fore the army got within nine miles of the city. After the battle 
of Pumpkin Vine Ridge. Georgia, which occurred May 29, 1864, 
he was promoted to tiie rank of sergeant major and twice given 
special mention in the official records for Ijravery. His first term 
of enlistment expired in 1864, and on October 5th of the same 
year he reenlisted in the same regiment, spending the first year 
drilling recruits. During the following winter he was appointed 
quartermaster sergeant for the Third Battalion and stayed at 
regimental headquarters at Columbus. From here, on Octoi)er 
19. 1865, he went to Fort Kearney, Nebraska, and was there ap- 
pointed post sergeant piajor and in the same year was advanced 
to the position of ordnance sergeant of the post. He was sta- 
tioned successively at Fort Leavenworth. Kansas, and at Camp 
Douglas, Utah, where he served as ordnance sergeant until April, 
when the Third Battalion of the Eleventh United States Infantry 
was made into the Thirty-Sixth United States Infantry, at the 
reorganization of the army at the close of the war. He was 
stationed with liis regiment at Fort Saunders. Dakota territory, 
and there remained until Octoljer 5, 1867. when he received his 
final discharge as quartermaster sergeant. 

On returning to Bloomfield. Ohio, he rode over the first five 
hundred miles of tlic I'nion I'acific Railroad. After iiis arrival in 
the city he went to work at the blacksmitli's trade and ren^ained 
in Bloomfield until March i, 1868. when lie went to Buford. in l!ie 
same state, where he again worked at his chosen occupation. 
From Buford he went to Council Bluffs and from there to ^lace- 
donia, Iowa, wliere he started a blacksmith shop on May 18. iSj.^. 
He still resides in this city and is one of the prominent and suc- 
cessful men of his community. He and his family have lived in 
Macedonia continuously since the time of his original settlement. 
A short period was. Iiowever. spent traveling in the Black Hills and 
in Yellowstone Park. He is now living retired. He married 
December 16, 1868, Miss Mary Ellen Frey, and they became the 
parents of seven children: Martha Ann May, who was born at 
Buford, Ohio, October 18, 1869; Fredrick Elmer, bom in the 
same city, September 6, 1872; Albert Edgar, born in Buford, 
April 5, 1874; Armanis I'rcy. of this re\iew: twin l)Ovs. who 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 53 

were born in Macedonia, Iowa, November 3, 1882, and who died 
the same day; and Edna Emma, whose birth occurred in Mace- 
donia, June 22, 1885. 

Armanis Frey Patton \vas reared at home and the first lesson 
which he learned from his parents was that of the value of hard 
work. While he was not obliged to remain out of school and 
work for his living he was taught that honest toil was the greatest 
blessing of mankind. During the vacations he was given odd 
jobs and was responsible to his parents for the capable perform- 
ance of his duties. He learned how to sympathize with the boy 
who has to ride the lead horse in the harvest field, or hoe weeds 
in the cornfield, because many times he did this work for his 
farmer friends at fifty cents a day. However, his education was 
not neglected. He finished the grade departments in the district 
schools and was one of the first class to graduate from the Mace- 
donia high school, there being only two to finish the course 
mapped out by the school board that year. His classmate, who 
graduated with him, was Lillian B. Ashley, and the exercises took 
place June 29, 1893, with the principal. Miss Olive A. Benn, 
presiding. 

Before his graduation Mr. Patton began to learn the printer's 
trade in the home office, working nights, mornings and Satur- 
days, and since that time has followed that business as his chosen 
occupation. On November 26, 1894, he left Macedonia for Day- 
ton, and began work on the Dayton Review, under J. G. Durell, 
who at that time owned and published the paper. He retained 
this position until February i, 1898, when he in partnership with 
Emory A. Rolfe, principal of the Dayton public schools, purchased 
the plant and began operating the newspaper. On October 12, 
1899, they expanded their interests by purchasing the Gowrie 
News and conducted both papers under the name of Patton & 
Rolfe. Mr. Rolfe remained in Dayton to take charge of the 
affairs of the Review and Mr. Patton moved to Gowrie to look 
after the interests of the News. This partnership continued until 
June I, 1900, when it was dissolved, Mr. Rolfe taking full control 
of the Dayton paper and Mr. Patton retaining the Gowrie News. 

On April 22, 1898, Mr. Patton was united in marriage to Miss 
Anna Adella Vederstrom, who was born at Norrkoping, Sweden, 
April 29, 1879. She is a daughter of Oscar and Christine Veder- 
strom, and she came to this country with her widowed mother 
when she was only three years of age. She has one brother. Axel 



54 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

W., who is engaged in the heating and pkimbing business at Mar- 
athon, Iowa. Mrs. Patton received a good common-school educa- 
tion and was graduated from the Dayton public school, June 29, 
1896. z'Vfterward she taught in the Webster county schools until 
her marriage. Mr. and Mrs. Patton have four children : Lorimer 
Lee, who was born May 9, 1900, attending district school ; Rudolph 
Frey, who was born May 26, 1902, and who is attending the same 
school; Murray James William, who was born October 23, 1904, 
and who died August 6, 1905; and Harris Elric, born March 24, 
1909. The family belong J.o the Methodist Episcopal church, of 
Gowrie. 

Mr. Patton is well known in fraternal circles of the city, holding 
membership in Rose Lodge, No. 506, F. & A. M., and in the In- 
dependent Order of Odd Fellows. He is also well known in the 
afifairs of the Modern Woodmen of America and belongs to 
Myrtle Lodge, No. 330, Knights of Pythias. Inheriting the 
honorable and worthy qualities of a long line of sturdy, determined 
and forceful men, he has worked out an honorable destiny and 
accomplished a worthy success. Influenced by their traditions 
and principles he has ever adhered to the standards of unflinching 
integrity and stanch loyalty, liy which they molded their upright 
lives and his career has added luster to an honorerl name. 



MICH.\EL D. GURXETT. 

Michael D. Gurnett is a native son of Iowa and his lather was a 
pioneer in its development. Our subject has been a resilient of Web- 
ster county since 1896, where for a time he was successful as an 
active agriculturist, being still an extensive owner of farm lands. 
He is now operating a large grain elevator in Barnum and has made 
his energy, detemiination and enterprise the basis of a distinct and 
substantial success. He was born in Linn county, Iowa, March 22, 
1873, and is a son of Andrew and Ellen (Martin) Gurnett, natives 
of Ireland. His father came to America in 1850 and located in La 
Salle, Illinois, where he worked as a railroad brakeman for three 
years. At the end of that time he moved to Linn county, Iowa, where 
he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land, paying six dollars 
per acre. He operated and improved this farm for three years and 
sold it at the end of that time for twelve dollars per acre. He later 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 55 

purchased two hundred and forty acres at six dollars, adding to his 
holdings from time to time until he owned a large tract of highly 
cultivated land, comprising five hundred and twenty acres. He con- 
tinued to be engaged in agricultural pursuits upon this property until 
1909, when he retired from active life and moved to the vicinity of 
Fairfax, where he is making his home with his daughter, Mrs. Frank 
Cahill. His wife passed away in 1904. 

^Michael D. Gurnett was reared at home and was educated in the 
public schools of Fairfax, Linn county, graduating with the class 
of 1893. For three years afterward he aided his father in the 
work of the farm, coming eventually to Webster county, where he 
rented land three miles north of Barnum in Johnson township, 
which he operated and developed for three years. In 1899 he 
abandoned agricultural pursuits and moved into Barnum, where 
he purchased a grain elevator which he has operated ever since. 
He now has one of the most prosperous commercial undertakings 
in the village. He has won his success by close attention to busi- 
ness, earnest labor and practical application of his business knowl- 
edg-e. He has made about fifty thousand dollars in the past six- 
teen years and has invested his money judiciously, being num- 
bered among the substantia! and representative citizens of the 
district. He owns four hundred and forty-four acres of highlv 
improved land in Johnson and Jackson townships, one hundred 
and sixty acres in South Dakota and a fine home in Barnum, in 
which he resides, beside business property in this village. 

On October 22, 1902, Mr. Gurnett was united in marriage to Miss 
Mary Condon, a daughter of David and Ellen (Reid) Condon, 
natives of Ireland. Mrs. Gurnett's parents reside at No. 1321 Second 
a\enue. South, Fort Dodge, Iowa. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Gurnett is a consistent republican 
and has served as town treasurer of Barnum with ability. He is a 
stockholder in the Corn Belt Package Company of Fort Dodge and 
in the Barnum Telephone Company. He belongs to the Roman 
Catholic church and holds membership in the Knights of Columlnis 
and the Modern Woodmen of America. He is firm in his faith in 
the future of the middle western states and believes that the greatest 
opportunity offered to the young man of today is to acquire land in 
this section, predicting that property in ^^'ebster county will sell 
within the next ten years at three hundred dollars per acre. Mr. 
Gurnett has a thorough knowledge of real-estate values and engages 
to some extent along this line, buying and selling farm lands. He 



56. HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

has a record of sixteen years continuous identification with b' ness 
in Barnum and is numbered among the progressive, enterprismj, and 
modern men of his section. He has all the qualifications of energy, 
buoyancy and public spirit and his personal achievements are an 
addition to the resources of the community in which he resides, not 
only as owner of an important undertaking but also in the qualities 
and standards of citizenship he possesses. His labors have been con- 
stantly constructive and ha\e had practical results. 



WILLIAM L. NICHOLSON, M D. 

The late Dr. \\ illiam L. Nicholson was not only one of the 
pioneers of Fort Dodge, but had the additional distinction of 
being the second physician to locate in the city. He was born 
in County Tipperary, Ireland, on September 25, 1832, and was a 
son of Robert and Mary (Blundon) Nicholson, the father a 
nati\e of England, but the mother of French extraction. In the 
paternal line Dr. Nicholson was a descendant of the Danish 
knigiit, Ralph Nikelsen, whose valiant service at Hastings caused 
William, Duke of Normandy, and subsequently king of England, 
to bestow upon him a large land grant in England, a coat of arms 
and a crest. This was a lion rampant surmounting a shield bear- 
ing three suns, two bars ermine and three bars azure with the 
motto "Fide et Honore." His descendant, Robert Nikelsen 
accompanied Henry III. to Ireland on his first invasion of that 
country, but the Nikelsen family did not permanently settle in 
Ireland until 1645. I" the latter year Robert Nickolson, a captain 
of horse in the army of Oliver Cromwell, was given a large land 
grant in Counties Tipperary and Waterford by Cromwell, and 
the family thereafter resided on the Emerald isle. 

The eldest son of his parents, Dr. Nicholson was reared on the 
family estate in Ireland. He inherited pronounced scholarly in- 
stincts, which were further developed by early environment and 
associations. His education was begun in the schools of \\'ater- 
ford and at the age of seven he had a very good knowledge of 
Latin. He attended various private schools, among them a col- 
lege located on his father's estate, until old enough to enter 
Trinity College at Dublin, from which institution he was grad- 
uated with honors. Later he entered the University of Glasgow 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 59 

and pursued a professional course, being graduated with the 
degree of M. B. in 1852. At the age of twenty-one years he left 
his native land and came to America, locating in Canada. Two 
years later, in 1855, he crossed the border into the United States, 
settling in Fort Dodge, Iowa. As this country was very sparsely 
settled at that time, there was little demand for the services 
of a physician, so he turned his attention to teaching and for a 
time conducted a private school here. As the country became 
better settled he withdrew from teaching and engaged in the 
practice of his profession. On the i6th of August, 1862, he en- 
listed as a private in Company E, Thirty-second Iowa Volun- 
teer Infantry at Fort Dodge under Captain J. Hutchisson and 
Colonel Scott. At Davenport on the 6th of Octoljer, he was 
promoted to the office of second lieutenant and in December of 
the same year he was appointed to the medical corps as assistant 
surgeon of the Twenty-ninth regiment of the Iowa Volunteer 
Infantry under Colonel Benton. He was subsequently made 
chief surgeon with the rank of major. He took part in the White 
River expedition in January, 1863, and that of the Yazoo Pass in 
the following February. He likewise participated in the battle 
at Helena, Arkansas, on July 4: Bayou Meto, August 27; and 
Little Rock, September 10. He was also at Terre Noire on the 
2d of April, 1864; Elkins Ford, April 4; Prairie d'Anne, April 
10 and 12; Camden, April 16; and Jenkins Ferry, April 30. At 
the latter point. Dr. Nicholson was taken prisoner, but his re- 
lease was soon effected through an exchange of prisoners. Soon 
thereafter he obtained a thirty days furlough, which he passed 
at Fort Dodge, rejoining his regiment on the 31st of December, 
1864. He was stationed at Mobile, Alabama, from March 17 
to April 9. 1865, and took part in the assault on Spanish Fort, 
Alabama, April 8. He was present at Fort Blakely on the 9th 
of April and at Mobile on the r2th of that month, while he was 
in the Texas campaign until July. 1865. On the loth of August 
he was mustered out at New Orleans, receiving his honorable dis- 
charge on the 19th of the September, following. Upon his return 
to Fort Dodge, he resumed his practice, continuing to be actively 
identified with his profession until his death. He was a very 
progressive man and kept in close touch with the development of 
his profession, and in 1882 he pursued a post-graduate course in 
Des Moines. The year following together with R. W. Crawford 
he opened a drug store here, but the heavy exactions of his prac- 



60 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

lice made it impossible for him to engage in any business activi- 
ties, so he soon withdrew from this. For four years prior to his 
death, Dr. Nicholson was in very poor health, suffering very 
much at times from hay fever. He was a man of remarkable 
versatility, and his well stored mind, ready wit and brilliant con- 
versational powers made him a delightful companion. He was 
very fond of nature and although the exactions of his profession 
gave him very little outside time he contributed many able and 
scholarly articles to the "American F^ield." A lover of music 
and poetry and in fact all of the arts, he had an extensive acquaint- 
ance with the literature of practically all nations and was a poet 
himself of considerable ability. 

Dr. Nicholson was twice married, his first union was with Miss 
Anna J. Leonard of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on the 31st of Decem- 
ber, 1865, and they became the parents of one son, \V. L. Nichol- 
son, who is engaged in the lumber business in El Paso, Texas. 
She passed away on the 15th of January, 1875, and on the 27th of 
November, 1876, the Doctor was married to Miss Sarah L. Sher- 
man, a native of County Roscommon, Ireland. Mrs. Nicholson 
is a daughter of James and Mary Ann (Comyns) Sherman, both 
natives of Ireland, but the mother was of Scotch extraction, w liiJe 
the paternal ancestors were Irish. Botli Mr. .md Mrs. .Sherman 
died in their native land, and while still in her early childhood 
!Mrs. Nicholson was brought to the United States, and later 
became a resident of Fort Dodge, where she was married. One 
daughter, Anna, was born to Dr. and Mrs. Nicholson. She early 
manifested marked musical ability and was given the advantage 
of studying under the best teachers in this country, after which she 
went abroad and was graduated from the Conservatory of Leip- 
sic. She studied under several eminent masters elsewhere and 
upon her return to Fort Dodge opened a studio and has ever since 
been engaged in teaching. Mrs. Nicholson and her daughter 
hve at 827 Second avenue. South, which has been the family resi- 
dence for many years. 

Dr. Nicholson was a communicant of the Roman Catholic 
church, as likewise are his widow and daugliter. and he was an 
honored member of Fort Donelson Post, No. 236, G. A. R. of 
Fort Dodge. In politics he was a democrat, and served for one 
term as city clerk. Immediately after the close of the war he 
was pension examiner, being one of the first appointed to this 
ofificc, and he held the same position during President Cleveland's 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 61 

administration. He was a member of the Catholic Mutual Ben- 
efit Association and for many years was examining physician 
of this organization, while up to the time of his death he was 
surgeon for all of the railroads running into Fort Dodge. He 
maintained relations with the other members of his profession 
through the medium of his connection with the county, district 
and state medical societies, and for some years was president of 
the District Medical Society. He enjoyed the regard and esteem 
of a large circle of friends, many of whom he had known from 
the time he came to Iowa, and has left behind him the memory of 
a bright, genial, kindly, helpful nature, whose ready sympathy 
and encouraging word won him the confidence and good-will of 
both young and old. He passed away on the nth of November, 
1890. 



JOHN TODD. 



John Todd, who has lived in honorable retirement at Otho for the 
past eight years, was for many years engaged in farming and min- 
ing in this county, winning success in both activities. His birth oc- 
curred in \\'isconsin on the ist of January, 1844, his parents being 
William and Mary (Warton) Todd, both of whom were natives of 
England. The father worked as a miner in that country until 1843, 
when he emigrated to the United States, locating in Illinois. After 
a short time, however, he removed to Wisconsin, working in the lead 
mines of that state until 1849. In that year he drove across the coun- 
try to California and spent a year at work in the gold mines. On 
the journey back to Wisconsin he became ill, dving in New York in 
1850. The demise of his wife occurred in iNS(). 

John Todd was reared and educated in his native state and after 
putting aside his text-books began working in the lead mines. In 1862 
when a youth of eighteen, he left his widowed mother in order to 
join the boys in blue, becommg a member of Company F, Twen- 
tieth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, with which command he re- 
mained until the close of hostilities between the north and the south. 
When the country no longer needed his military aid he returned to 
\\'isconsin and there worked in the mines until 1869. In that vear 
he came to Webster county, Iowa, locating in Otho townshi[), where 
he was employed at digging coal. At the end of the year, however. 



62 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

he returned to Wisconsin, continuing to reside in that state for 
seven years. On the expiration of that period he again came to 
this county and once more began mining here. Subsequently he 
purchased thirty-two acres of land and began mining coal on his own 
account, later also carrying on fanning. He operated his thirty- 
two acre tract and likewise cultivated rented land. The pursuits of 
mining and farming claimed his attention until 1904, when he took up 
his al)ode in Otho. where he owns a handsome residence and two 
lots and where he has since lived in honorable retirement. He still 
owns his farm of thirty-two acres, situated three-fourths of a mile 
from Otho. He is a stockholder in the Farmers Elevator Com- 
pany of Otho and lias long been numbered among the substantial 
and esteemed citizens of the community. 

On the loth of March, 1866, Mr. Todd was united in marriage 
to Miss Lucy Shipley, a daughter of Thomas and Maria (Watson) 
Shipley, both of whom were natives of England. Thomas Shipley. 
w ho followed mining in that country, emigrated to the United States 
in 1856, locating in Wisconsin, wliere he worked in the mines until 
seventy years of age. His demise occurred in that state in March, 
1896, while his wife was called to her final rest in Septemljer, 1907. 
To ^Ir. and Mrs. Todd were born nine children, as follows : Eva : 
Cora ; Agnes ; Emma ; Gertrude ; Laura ; Thomas ; Floyd : and 
W^illiam, who passed away in 1869. 

John Todd is a stanch republican, while his religious faitii is that 
of the Methodist church. His life, lived in accordance with high 
principles and spent in useful endea\or. has been of valuable ser- 
vice to the community and makes him deserving of the res[)ect he 
enjoys. 



S. K. E. AXDERSOX. 



S. R. E. Anderson, who is one of the successful business men 
of Gowrie, is a native of this city, born May 13, 1877. His par- 
ents were A. E. and Sophie (Anderson) Anderson, natives of 
Sweden. The father came to America in 1866, locating at Gales- 
burg, Illinois, and later removed to Chicago. He afterward came 
to Gowrie, settling on a farm in Clay township of this county, where 
he resided until he died. His wife, Sophie (.\nderson) Ander- 
son is still living. In tiieir familv were nine children: Ellen, the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 63 

wife of G. B. Steinlean of Gowrie; S. R. E., of this review; E. 
B. of Fort Dodge; Ella, the wife of Albert Swan of Marshalltown ; 
Teckla, who is now Mrs. France Johnson of Gowrie; Constant, who 
is engaged in farming; Hilma, a student of Drake University, at 
Des Moines ; and Antonia and Edith, both of w honi are at home. 

S. R. E. Anderson was educated in the public schools, graduating 
from high school when he was nineteen years of age. He afterward 
completed a normal-school course. Subsequently he started in the 
restaurant business in Gowrie in which he remained for four years. 
Later he became connected with the Andrew Wood firm, dealers in 
general produce, remaining with them until 1907. He then took 
charge of the prQduce-commission business for Swift & Company of 
Chicago, with whom he has since been actively connected. He buys 
poultry, eggs, butter and cream and has a large and remunerative 
trade. Mr. Anderson has been very successful in his financial affairs 
and owns a fine residence here. 

In February, 1899, Mr. Anderson was married to Miss Martha E. 
Nelson, who was born in Dubuque, Iowa, a daughter of August Nel- 
son, a resident of Gowrie. To Mr. and Mrs. Anderson ha\e been 
born four children, Gulhar, ]\Iedford, Raymond, and Ardella, all of 
whom are at home. In his political views S. R. E. Anderson is repub- 
lican and he has ever taken an active interest in the welfare of the 
community. He and all the members of his family belong to the 
Lutheran church. Fraternally he is identified with the Yeomen and 
the Modern Woodmen of America, at Gowrie. Having always resided 
in this town Mr. Anderson is well known here and his upright life 
and honest business methods have won for him the high regard of all 
with whom he has associated. 



THOMAS ASHTON. 



Thomas Ashton is a member of the firm of Ashton Brothers, con- 
ducting a grocery establishment at the corner of Twelfth street and 
Central avenue in Fort Dodge. The l)rotliers, Thomas and James 
B. Ashton, have been successfully engaged in business together for 
the past twenty-eight years. Thomas .\shton was born in Lincoln- 
shire, England, on the 13th of October, 1846, his parents being 
Robert and Elizabeth (Beers) Ashton, who were likewise natives of 
that county. His paternal grandparents, who died in England, had 



64 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

one son and four daughters. Mr. and Mrs. James Beers, the maternal 
grandparents of our subject, were natives of Ireland and the latter 
died in England. Mr. Beers subsequently emigrated to the United 
States, passing away in New York city at an advanced age. He had 
two children, Elizabeth and Thomas. 

Robert Ashton, the father of Thomas Ashton, was a bricklayer by 
trade and, coming to the new world, located at Plymouth, Michigan. 
Subsequently he took up his abode in Ann Arbor, that state, where 
his demise occurred in 1857, when he had attained the age of about 
forty-nine years. His wife, who survived him, passed away at the 
age of about sixty-eight. Both were Catholics in religious faith. 
Their children were eight in number, namely : Maria, who is the 
wife of Henry Hayler, of San Diego, California; Robert, deceased; 
Thomas, of this review; Hannah, the deceased wife of Patrick Shee- 
han, of Ann Arbor, ]\Iichigan; Theresa, who is the wife of Calvin 
Tryon, of Davidson Station, Michigan; Agnes, who gave her hand 
in marriage to Frederick Martin, of Saginaw, Michigan; James B., 
who is engaged in the grocery business in partnership with his brother 
Thomas; and John Henry, who lives near Saginaw, Michigan. 

Thomas Ashton, whose name introduces this review, was a lad of 
five years when he accompanied his parents to the United States in 
1851. He grew to manhood in Plymouth and Ann Arbor, Michigan, 
and vicinity, attending the public schools in the acquirement of an 
education. \Mien a youth of eighteen he ran away from home to 
enlist for service in the Civil war, becoming a private of Company I, 
Fifth Michigan Cavalrj'. He was present at the e\acuation of 
Petersburg and witnessed the surrender of Lee at .\])p(jmatto.x. Wlien 
hostilities had ceased he returned to Michigan and there fuilnwed 
farming for about four years. In iHjo he came to h'ort Dorlge, Iowa, 
and secured employment as a farm hand in Humboldt county, while 
subsequently he worked on a farm in I'alo .\lto county. In June. 
1872, he returned to Fort Dodge and entered the grocery establish- 
ment of D. K. Lincoln. In that line of activitj^ he has remained to 
the present time. For the past twent\'-eiglit years lie lias been en- 
gaged in business in association w itii his brother, James B., ami the 
firm has not only enjoyed an extensive and profitable trade but also 
an unassailable reputation for integrity and straightforward dealing. 
The Ashton Brothers carry a large line of staple and fancy groceries 
and are at all times in a position to meet the demantis and wishes of 
theii' customers. 



HIST(3RY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 65 

On the 26th of September, 1876, Mr. Ashton was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Lorena L. Martin, a native of Mineral Point, Wis- 
consin, where the wedding ceremony took place. Her parents, Henry 
and Mary Ann (Lanyon) Martin, who were born in England, be- 
came early settlers of Mineral Point, Wisconsin. Henry Martin, 
who was a coal, lead and gold miner, passed away when about 
seventy-eight years of age. His wife was seventy-two years of age 
when called to her final rest. Their children were as follows: 
Lorena, ]\lrs. Mary Ellen Jones and James H. Martin. To Mr. and 
Mrs. Ashton have been born six children, as follows : Robert Henry, 
Blanche Agnes, Frederick Walter and three, who died in infancy. 

Mr. Ashton is a stanch republican, supporting the men and meas- 
ures of that party at the polls. He belongs to Fort Donelson Post, 
No. 236, G. A. R., and was chosen commander of the same for the 
year 1912. He is widely and favorably known in Fort Dodge and 
Webster county and the circle of his friends is almost coextensive 
with the circle of his acquaintances. 



JAMES B. ASHTON. 

James B. Ashton, a member of the grocery firm of Ashton Brothers 
in Fort Dodge, was born at Ann Arbor, Michigan, on the i6th of 
December, 1855, and was reared in that city and vicinity. He ob- 
tained his education in the public schools of Ann Arbor and when 
in his thirteenth year began working on a farm by the month, being 
thus employed for a number of years. On the 7th of August, 1879, 
he came to Iowa, located in Fort Dodge and here clerked in a grocery 
store until the spring of 1882. At that time he went to Monarch, 
Colorado, where he clerked for one year and then embarked in busi- 
ness on his own account. In August, 1884, he returned to Fort 
Dodge and on the ist of September, following, engaged in the gro- 
cery business in association with his brother Thomasi , As above 
stated, the brothers have remained in business here continuously since 
and have won a gratifying and well merited measure of prosperity. 

On the 9th of December, 1885, Mr. Ashton was united in marriage 
to Miss Leila O. Jones, a daughter of A. W. and Cordelia 
(Walker) Jones. To them have been born two children: Clay 
B., who died at the age of two years; and James W., whose I)irth 
occurred in 1892. The mother is a devoted member of the Meth- 



66 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

odist Episcopal church. Mr. Ashton gives his political allegiance 
to the republican party and has served as city councilman for three 
terms. His worth is widely acknowledged by those who know 
him and he has the favorable regard of a large circle of friends. 



JUDGE ROBERT MULLINS WRIGHT. 

Judge Robert ^Mullins Wright, who since 1906 has occupied the 
bench of the eleventh judicial district, entered upon his professional 
career well equipped by thorough and comprehensive collegiate train- 
ing and in the interiiYi ^^ince his admission to the bar has made con- 
tinuous progress until Iowa today numbers him among her dis- 
tinguished lawyers and jurists. He was born at Sheffield, England, 
November i, 1844, and in both the paternal and maternal lines comes 
of English ancestry. His grandfather, Stephen \\'right, born on the 
"Alerrie Isle," was manager of an estate and to him and his wife, 
Matilda Wright, were born three children, Thomas, Stephen and .Amy. 
The first named, born in England, was reared in Yorkshire and always 
followed farming. The agricultural opportunities of the new world, 
however, attracted him to America and in 1850 he crossed the Atlantic, 
taking up his abode near Lisbon, Kendall county, Illinois, where he 
remained for two or three years. He afterward remo\ed to De Kalb 
county, where he passed away in 1882, at the age of eighty years. 
His wife sur\i\ed him until 18X7 and was se\enty-nine years of age 
at the time of her demise. She, too, was born in England, as were 
her parents, George and Sarah (Gilot) Mullins. Her father was a 
farmer by occupation, thus providing for the support of his family, 
which numbered six children, including Robert, George, and Mary. 
The daughter Mary became the wife of Thomas Wright and for 
many years they traveled life's journey happily together. He was 
originally an Episcopalian in religious belief and she a member of 
the Congregational church, but after settling in Illinois in early days, 
they identified themselves with the Methodist denomination, which 
was the pioneer church of that state, continuing their connection with 
that faith until their death. In community afifairs Mr. Wright was 
somewhat prominent, holding a number of township offices, and at 
all times his record measured up to high standards of manhood and 
citizenship. His family numbered five children, of whom the eldest, 
George, is deceased. Ann was the wife of \\'illiam Cutts. She died 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 67 

at Shabbona, De Kalb county, Illinois, in September, 1912. Wil- 
liam was a soldier of the Civil war and was killed at the battle of 
Resaca. Robert M. was the next of the family. Juliana is the wife 
of James Spaulding, an old soldier, living near Ruthven, Iowa. 

Judge Wright was but five years of age when brought to the 
United States and remained upon the home farm in De Kalb county, 
Illinois, until he entered college. He supplemented his preliminary 
education by a course in the University of Michigan, from which he 
was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Arts in 1871, while 
the honorary degree of blaster of Arts was conferred upon him in 
1874. In early manhood he devoted five years of his life to teaching 
school and during the last four years of that period was principal of 
the high school in Fort W^ayne, Indiana. I-3 July. 1876, he arrived 
in Fort Dodge and entered upon the practice of law here in that 
year, having prepared for the bar by private study at a former period. 
He has ever remained a close and discriminating student of the pro- 
fession, reading broadly and mastering the principles of jurisprudence 
in large measure. He continued in active practice until 1906, when 
he was elected judge of the district court and is still upon the bench. 
His decisions are models of judicial soundness and are based upon 
a thorough understanding of the points presented, a comprehensive 
knowledge of the law and an appreciation of the equity of the case. 
He has not only been acti\e in administering the law but also has 
taken part in framing acts which ha\e found their way to the statute 
books of the state, for in 1882 he was a member of the state legisla- 
ture, during which period he voted for the submission of the pro- 
hibitory amendment to the state constitution, concerning intoxicating 
liquors and also at that time voted in fax'or of woman suffrage. In 
1904 he was once more chosen to represent his district in the state 
legislature and again in 1906. He has served on some of the most 
important committees in the legislature, of several of which he was 
chainnan, including the committee on constitutional amendments. 
He has been a stalwart republican since the organization of the party. 
His father was greatly opposed to slavery and Judge W^right held to 
the same views. Indeed, throughout his entire life he has been the 
opponent of any unjust domination and he stands for much that is 
progressive, holding to the ideal of party service for the many rather 
than for the few. 

On the 27th of August, 1872, Judge Wright was married to Miss 
Elizabeth Fowler, a daughter of James and Mary Fowler. Mrs. 
W^right was born in Aurora, Illinois, while her parents were natix'es 



68 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

of Ireland and of Scotch-Irish descent. They also held to the Prot- 
estant faith. After living for a time in Canada they came to the 
United States, settling in Aurora, Illinois, but spending their last 
days in De Kalb county, Illinois, where Mr. Fowler passed away at 
the age of eighty-two years and his wife when seventy years of age. 
They were the parents of six children : John, who died in the Civil 
war; Robert, whose death occurred in Illinois about three years ago; 
James, a Civil war soldier, who died at Denver, Colorado, in 1910; 
Mary Ann, unmarried; Mrs. Sarah Jane Howlitt, of Paw Paw, Illi- 
nois, a widow and fonnerly the wife of a Union veteran, who died 
several years ago; and Mrs. Wright. The last named died in 1889, 
at the age of forty-two years. She was a consistent Christian woman 
and held membership in the Methodist church. She became the mother 
of four children : Florence Eliza, who died when fourteen years of age ; 
Herbert Francis, who died when four years of age; Roberta, the wife 
of Walter Merryman, manager of the Messinger Printing Office; 
and Elizabeth Gilot, at home. On the 27th of August, 1890, Judge 
Wright married Miss Hattie Maria Leonard, who was born December 
9, 1858, a daughter of Df. P. M. Leonard, of Fort Wayne. Indiana. 
There is one son of the second marriage, Robert Leonard Wright, 
now a student in the University of Iowa. Mrs. Wright is a member 
of the Presbyterian church. Both Judge and ^Irs. \Vright have a 
wide acquaintance in Fort Dodge and this part of the state, where 
he has lived continuously for thirty-six years. He has ever held 
closely to a high standard of professional ethics and has been an able 
and conscientious minister in the temple of justice. His ideals of 
citizenship are high and in the relations of life which are of a more 
strictly social character he has displayed qualities which have ren- 
dered him popular wherever he is known. 



ASAEL W. JONES. 



Asael W. Jones, who is living retired at No. 1303 Fifth avenue. 
South, in Fort Dodge, has resided in this city for more than four 
decades and here conducted a blacksmith shop for fifteen years. Since 
disposing of his shop he has been engaged in the sale of agricultural 
implements. His birth occurred in Crawford county, Pennsylvania, 
in Randolph township, near Meadville, on the 4th of June, 1838. his 
parents being Joel and Sarah (Smith) Jones, the fonner a native of 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 69 

Sacket Harbor, New York, and the latter of Ware, Massachusetts. 
His paternal grandfather, Joel Jones, who participated in the Revo- 
lutionary war, was a native of Vermont and an agriculturist by occu- 
pation. Both he and his wife, who bore the maiden name of Sarah 
Sprague, lived to a ripe old age. Their children were six in number. 
The maternal grandparents of our subject were John and Sarah 
Smith, the former a native of Massachusetts and a farmer by occu- 
pation. 

Joel Jones, the father of Asael W. Jones, was born in 1794 and 
reared in the state of his nativity. When a youth of eighteen he en- 
listed at Sacket Harbor for service in the War of 1812. He was 
married in Pennsylvania and in 1846 removed westward to Ilhnois, 
locating in La Salle county, twelve miles north of Ottawa, on the old 
Shabbona Indian trail. There he devoted his attention to farming 
and spent the remainder of his life, passing away at the age of sev- 
enty-eight years. His wife died three years later, when seventy-nine 
years old. Both were Methodists in religious faith. Mr. Jones held 
various township offices and was well educated, following the pro- 
fession of school teaching in early manhood. All of his children 
received a good college education. To Joel and Sarah (Smith) Jones 
were born the following children : V. B., who served as a Union 
soldier during the Civil war; Heppa Julietta; Sarasa Marilla; Sarah 
Ermina: Luther Alvera; Joel Adna, who also participated in the Civil 
war; and Asael Wadworth. of this review. 

Asael Wadworth Jones was reared to manhood in Illinois and 
obtained his early education in the public schools of La Salle county. 
He then removed to Wheaton and spent four years as a student in 
Wheaton College. Subsequently he learned the blacksmith's trade, 
which he followed for many years. In 1870 he came to Iowa and 
throughout the intervening forty-two years has made his home in 
I-'ort Dodge. He successfully conducted a blacksmith shop here for 
fifteen years and then sold out, since which time he has been a sales- 
man in the service of a firm dealing in agricultural implements. 

On the 17th of March, i860, Asael W. Jones was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Cordelia A. Walker, a native of Ohio, the ceremony 
taking place on the eighteenth birthday of the bride. Her parents, 
C. ^\'. and Keziah Walker, were also natives of the Buckeye state and 
became early settlers of Henry, Marshall county, Illinois. They came 
to Iowa in 1869 and passed away at Fort Dodge. Their children 
w ere seven in number, Cordelia. Orselia, Livona, Emma, Flora, Mary 
and Carrie. To Mr. and Mrs. Jones were born five children. Fred 



70 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

E., who is superintendent of the government telephone system at 
Phoenix, Arizona, wedded Miss Sarah Blaine, by whom he has five 
children, Harry E., Belle J., De Merritt, Maude and Bernice. Leila 
Orselia, who lives in Eort Dodge, is the wife of J. B. Ashton and the 
mother of one son, Jay. Joel Othello, deceased, was a telephone 
man. His widow, who bore the maiden name of Jennie Pace, resides 
in Webster City, Iowa, with her four children, Wilbur. Hazel, Dor- 
othy and Herbert. Minnie May ga\e her hand in marriage to E. H. 
Martin of Webster City, a telephone man. They ha\e two sons, 
Fred N. and Glen. Delia Edith Jones is the other member of our 
subject's family. The wife and mother was called to her final rest in 
i8go, when forty-eight years of age, passing away in the faith of the 
Methodist church. Mr. Jones is a devoted member of that church. 
He has passed the seventy-fourth milestone on life's journey and 
enjoys the veneration and respect which should ever be accorded one 
who has traveled thus far on this-earthly pilgrimage and whose life 
has been at all times upright and honorable. 



OLE C. HANSON. 



Ole C. Hanson, manager of the Otho Mercantile Company, is 
numbered among the worthy native sons and representative citizens 
of Webster county and has for the past eight years served as clerk of 
Otho townshi]). His birth occurred in Badger townsiiij) in Decem- 
ber, 1883, his parents being Olaf and Ingeborg (Larson) Hanson, 
both of whom are natives of Norway. Emigrating to the United 
states, they took up their abode at Badger, Webster county, Iowa, in 
1882. Olaf Hanson managed a store in Norway and after coming 
to this country acted as section foreman for the Minneapolis & St. 
Louis Railroad until about 1908, when he became paralyzed. In 1892 
he took u]) his abode in Otho, where he still resides at the age of fifty- 
four years, enjoying an enviable position in the regard and esteem 
of his fellow townsmen. His wife has also attained the age of fifty- 
four years. 

Ole C. Hanson was reared and educated in Wel)ster county, at- 
tending school until twelve years of age. Being one of a large family 
of children, he was then obliged to provide for his own support and 
entered the general store of Dawson & Wonders at Otho. in which he 
remained for three years. Subsequently he spent four vears in the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 71 

employ of Dawson & Green and on tlie expiration of that period went 
to Kalo, where he worked in the general store of Mr. Apland for 
four years. At the end of that time he returned to Otho and accepted 
the position of manager with the Otho Mercantile Company, which 
office he has since retained, being also a stockholder of the concern. 
The continued growth and success of the establishment is attributable 
in large measure to the good judgment and capable management of 
our subject. In igo8 the company erected the large and handsome 
two-story brick building in which they have since conducted business, 
carrying an extensive and complete line of goods at attractive prices 
and being accorded an excellent patronage. Mr. Hanson owns a good 
and commodious home in Otho. He is a stockholder in the Farmers 
Elevator Company here. 

On the 15th of June, 1Q04. our subject was united in marriage to 
Miss Barbara Ballantyne, a daughter of Sandy and Lizzie Ballantyne, 
natives of Scotland. They have two children, Ivan and Melva, who 
are seven and four years of age respectively. 

Ole C. Hanson is a stanch republican. He has served as clerk of 
Otho township for the past eight years and at the present time is also 
acting as assistant postmaster of Otho, discharging his duties in both 
connections with signal ])roniptness and ability. Fraternally he is 
identified with the Modern Woodmen of America, the Independent 
Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias. In religious faith 
he is a Methodist. He has already won a creditable place in business 
circles for one of his years and enjoys an extensive and favorable 
acquaintance in the county in which his entire life has been s])ent. 



F. M. SPRINGER. 



I''. M. Springer, who is successfully engaged in farming in Webster 
county, is the owner of an excellent tract of one hundred acres, on 
section 34, Roland township. He was born in Stark county, Illinois, 
August 17, 1856, a son of David and Mary (Chandler) Springer. 
The father was born in Ohio and in his youth removed from that 
state to Illinois, where he resided until 1874, when he came to Iowa, 
settling near Paton, Greene county. In 1883 he came to Webster 
county and located on a tract of land on section 34, Roland township. 
He improved and culti\ate(l this farm and resided there until his 
death which occurred in i<jo(). lie was a successful farmer and 



72 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

stock-raiser, and became one of the substantial residents of this sec- 
tion of the country. His wife is now hving on the old homestead. 
In their family were six children : James Harvey, who is deceased ; 
F. M., the subject of this review; G. F., who is a farmer in Roland 
township; Elmer, who resides with his mother; Mrs. Christine 
Young of Fort Dodge, Iowa ; and Ella, deceased. 

F. M. Springer received his education in the common schools of 
Illinois and remained under the parental roof until he was twenty- 
one years of age. He then started out in life for himself and was 
employed for some time on a farm, but afterward returned home and 
remained there until he was thirty-two years of age. He then located 
on his present farm of one hundred acres situated on section 34 in 
Roland township. He has cultivated and improved this land until he 
now has an excellent homestead. He is engaged in general farming 
and stock-raising. He also owns one hundred and sixty acres of land 
near Redfield, South Dakota. 

In Cowrie, Iowa, in 1879, Mr. Springer was married to Miss Lucy 
J. Smith, who was born in Sullivan county. New "N'ork. To this 
union one child was born, who died in infancy. Mr. and Mrs. 
Springer have one adopted son, Mark, who is eleven years of age. 

In politics Mr. Springer is republican, and both he and Mrs. 
Springer are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, of which he 
is a trustee. Fraternally he is identified witli the Modern Woodmen 
of .America. He is i)rogressive and energetic, and in ail his social 
and business relations is recognized as a man of genuine worth, who 
lias won the respect and esteem of all with whom he has come into 
contact. 



cii.\i<:ij-:s J. sw'.wsTROM. 

One of the highly respected citizens and retired l)usiness men of 
Dayton is Charles J. Swanstrom, vice president of the Farmers State 
Bank, who for nearly twenty years was identified with the lumber 
interests of the town. He was born on a farm in the Linkoping dis- 
trict in central Sweden, his parents being John and Joiianna (S wen- 
son) Suanslrum, botii of whom are now deceased. The father was 
for many years engaged in farming in Sweden, where he passed 
away. After his death the motlier made her home witli her daugh- 
ter, Mrs. Matilda Mel inc. who resided in Norrkoping, Sweden. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 73 

Charles J. Swanstroni was reared at home and attended tlie schools 
in the vicinity of his father's farm, hut a large portion of his educa- 
tion was acquired under the instruction of his mother, who had been 
given the advantages of good schooling. When fifteen years of age he 
began to learn the cabinet-maker's trade which occupation he followed 
until coming to America in 1868. In accordance with the law of the 
land he served, at the age of twenty, two years in the Swedish army. 
Not foreseeing any particular advantages or opportunities for advance- 
ment in his native land, and feeling convinced that he could find such 
in America, he left at the age of twenty-four the land of his birth 
and took passage for the United States. Upon his arrival in this 
country he went to Galesburg, Illinois, and there found employment 
in a carpenter's shop. Two months later he left there and went to 
Peoria, Illinois, where he followed various pursuits until 1871. In 
the spring of that year he came to Webster county and located in 
Dayton. He had very little means, but an abundance of energy and 
determination of purpose, and felt assured that he would meet with 
success. He established a shop and followed the carpenter's trade 
with continuously increasing success until 1883. During that period 
he managed to accumulate sufficient means to enable him to engage 
in commercial activities, on a larger scale and, disposing of his shop 
he went into the lumber business. The reputation he had acquired 
for integrity and reliability proved to be an invalualile asset to him, 
and this together with his enterprising and energetic methods en- 
abled him to build up a thriving enterprise. The clear judgment and 
intelligence he manifested in the development of his business enabled 
him to extend his activities and at the time of his retirement in 1901, 
he owned two lumberyards in Dayton. One was located at the Min- 
neapolis & St. Paul station and the other at the Chicago & North- 
western. He is now one of the largest stockholders of the Farmers 
State Bank, of which he was one of the organizers. After they in- 
corporated he was elected second vice president and retained that 
office for five years, when he was made vice president and has ever 
since served in that capacity. In addition to this he owns a half in- 
terest in a fine farm in Lost Grove township, and extensive grain 
lands in Canada, while he has a beautiful residence jiroperty in 
Dayton. 

In 1871, Mr. Swanstrom was united in marriage to Miss Helena 
Catharine Bliss, the event being celebrated in this city. Mrs. Swan- 
strom, who passed away on the 21st of December, 1898, was the 
daughter of a soldier in the Swedish army. Six children were born 



74 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

of this marriage as follows : Melvin, who died at the age of seven 
years ; George W., a traveling salesman living at Washington, Kan- 
sas ; Gus Albert, living with his father, who married Alice Johnson 
of Dayton and has two children, Garrial and Bliss ; Harry, also liv- 
ing with his father; Elmer, a partner in the Dayton Hardware Com- 
pany, who married Hilma Youngdell of this city; and Vera, who mar- 
ried Frank Donahey of Valley Junction, an employe of a Des Moines 
Shoe Company- 
Mr. Swanstrom has attained high rank in the Masonic fraternity 
and belongs to the blue lodge of Dayton, commandery at Fort Dodge 
and Shrine at Des Moines. In politics he is a stanch republican. He 
has always taken an active interest in municipal affairs and served for 
ten years in the council and on the school board for twenty, retiring 
from the latter in the spring of 191 1. Mr. Swanstrom is a man of 
many estimable qualities and by reason of his ability to dominate 
conditions and convert obstacles into opportunities has won the admi- 
ration of all with whom he has had dealings. He early learned that 
even in America success is not easily won, but must be the achieve- 
ment of unceasing diligence, the intelligent concentration of power 
and the determination of purpose, that will not recognize defeat. His 
career should be a source of inspiration to every ambitious young 
man, as the prosperity he attained is the result of his own unaided 
effort, no favorable circumstances or family influence ha\ing aided 
him in his early struggle. 



GEORGE D. HART, M. D. 

No student of history can carry his investigations far into the 
records of Weiister county without learning that the Hart family has 
figured prominently in its sul)stautial upbuilding and development, 
and it is, therefore, with iii.asurc lliat \vc present to our readers the 
sketch of Dr. George D. iiari. long an able and distinguished phy- 
sician of Otho, whose labors, however, have constituted but one phase 
of his life, for he has ever been mindful of his obligations and duties 
to his fellowmen and to city, state and nation. He was born in 
Adams county, Illinois, July 26, 1S35, his parents being Norman and 
Marcia (Hale) Hart, who were natives of Connecticut. The father 
went to Adams county, Illinois, in 1834 and after a brief residence 
there removed to Kane countv. Illinois, where he entered land from 




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^y- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 77 

the go\ernnient. Xot a furrow had been turned nor an impro\'ement 
made on his place and with characteristic energy lie began preparing 
the land for culti\ation. Year after year he tilled his fields until 

1854. when he sold that property and remo\ed to Webster county, 
entering eighty acres of land in Otho township. The other mem- 
bers of the family also entered land, which he improved and culti- 
\ated to the time of his death. He died suddenly on the 31st of 
March, 18S0. ha\ing for a few- years survived his wife, who passed 
away in Feliruary, 1875. They were, indeed, worth)' pioneer set- 
tlers of this region, arri\ing here when there was not a single rail- 
road in this state, while a railway line extended only half way across 
the state of Illinois. It was at their home on the 13th of J\Iarch, 

1855, that the First Congregational church of Otho was organized, 
these two worthy people becoining charter members and remaining 
faithful thereto until called to their reward. For about two years 
services were held at least part of the time in their home. For a 
long period Mr. Hart ser\ed as one of the officers of the church and 
his son Norman was the first superintendent of the Sunday school. 

George D. Hart was reared and educated in Big Rock township, 
Kane county, Illinois, and there remained until nineteen years of 
age, when, in 1854, he accompanied his parents as they drove across 
the country to Webster county, Iowa. Here he purchased one hun- 
dred and twenty acres of land at two dollars and a half per acre. 
A year after arriving here he set about improving his place and 
operated it from 1858 until August 16, 1862, when patriotism be- 
came the dominant element in his life and he enlisted as a member 
of Company I, Thirty-second Iowa Infantry. He never served in 
the ranks, however, for when the regiment started south from 
Dubuque he was left in charge of the sick at Camp Franklin and 
after rejoining his command at New Madrid, Missouri, on the 2d 
of December, following, he served as hospital warden, being thus 
on duty throughout the remainder of his term of enlistment. He 
was finally honorably discharged because of disability on the ist of 
July, 1865. It was his hospital experience that laid the foundation 
for his profession. Fle became interested in the practice of medi- 
cine and on his return home pursued a course of study in the office 
of Dr. S. B. Olney, who was chief surgeon in his regiment. Having 
thus qualified for active practice, he opened an ofilice in Otho, where 
he has since remained. His ability in the field of his chosen pro- 
fession has been widely recognized and has grown with further 

reading and study, for he has kept in touch with the advanced scien- 
voi. n— B 



78 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

tific methods which are the result of modern investigation. He still 
owns eighty acres of the land which he first purchased here on 
section 28, Otho township, and he has a beautiful home in the village. 
On the nth of November, 1858, Dr. Hart was married to Miss 
Orlinda S. Moore, who was born in Ohio on November 26, 1840, and 
was a daughter of Homer and Sarah (Minton) Moore, who came 
with their family to Iowa in 1856. In the following summer Mrs. 
Hart taught the first term of school and was one of the prominent 
pioneer women of Elkhorn township. She passed away on the 28th 
of January, 1883, leaving two children. Lillie H., the elder, born 
September i, 1859, became the wife of Fred E. Payne and died 
September 30, 1898, leaving two children: Calla H., born Septem- 
ber 6, 1881; and George E., born May 16, 1887. Hoyt N. Hart, 
born March 26, 1867, owns and operates a ranch at Paxton, Keith 
county, Nebraska. He first married Carrie ^I. Plummer and they 
had one child, Harrison Dolliver, born June 17, 1888. In 1906 
Hoyt N. Hart married Miss Lula Salisbury and to them was born 
one child, Lois, on November 22, 191 1. Dr. Hart was again mar- 
ried June II, 1885, his second union being with Pervilla R. Alsever, 
who was born in Oswego, New York, March 20, 1857, and in 1866 
came to Webster county, Iowa, with her parents, Abram and Arminda 
(Fish) Alsever, who were natives of New York. On arriving here 
her father took up river land and also bought lots in the village of 
Burnside, where he lived until 1902, when he retired from active 
business life and removed to Fort Dodge. There he remained until 
1909, when he took up his abode in the town of Otho, where he 
passed away in January, 19 10. His first wife died in April, 1877, 
and he was subsequently married to Mrs. Annie Perry, who now 
makes her home in Lehigh, this county. By the second marriage 
of Dr. Hart there has been born one son, Seth Norman, on August 
18, 1888, who was married, November 6, 1910, to Bess R. Everett 
and they have one son, Norman Dwight, born September 10, 1912. 
Seth N. Hart has since lived in Ohio, where he owns and conducts 
a photographic studio, enjoying a large practice. On the 12th of 
October, 1895, ^^- '^"'^ Mrs. Hart adopted an orphan girl, Albertina 
Anderson, who was born March 29, 1880, and was married January 
I, 1 90 1, to Henry W. Wakeman, a farmer of Otho township. They 
have four children: Florence P., bom December 16, 1901 ; Lola B., 
born October 29. 1903; George M., born November 15. 1905; and 
Lewis A., bom February 3, 1908. Dr. and Mrs. Hart also adopted 
a son, Dwight M., a son of J. M. Moore, who was one of the early 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 79 

settlers of the county. Dwight was born December i6, 1876, in 
Steele City, Nebraska, and in 1902 married Hattie La Valley. They 
have one child. Erma, born in 1903. 

Aside from his activity as a physician, Dr. Hart has done well 
for his community in public office, serving as a trustee of his town- 
ship for a number of years and also as its first road supervisor. He 
has been justice of the peace for three different terms and overseer 
of the cemetery of Otho for more than a half century. He was a 
charter member of Fort Donelson Post, G. A. R., of Fort Dodge, 
Iowa, and he has always given his political allegiance to the republi- 
can party, believing firmly in its principles. He holds membership 
in the First Congregational church of Otho, of which he has been 
a deacon since 1880. He was present on its organization, March 
13, 1855, and on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary celebration. 
He has long taken a most active and helpful part in the church work 
and his aid and influence are ever given to promote the moral prog- 
ress of the town and county. He has a wide acquaintance and all 
who know him are glad to call him friend, for his has been an up- 
right, honorable life, bringing to him the confidence and justly merited 
regard of those with whom he has been associated. 



M. B. DALY. 



jM. B. Daly is one of the well known merchants of Lehigh, ^^'ebster 
county, Iowa, where he is successfully engaged in conducting a gen- 
eral mercantile store located in the Tyson block. He was born De- 
cember 16, 1878, and is a son of Patrick and Aruia (Halpin) Daly. 
The father was for some years engaged in the coal business in com- 
pany with our subject, under the firm name of the Daly Coal Com- 
pany, but later they sold their coal mines. The father died at the 
age of sixty-three years. Patrick Daly was a member of the Knights 
of Columbus of Fort Dodge, and he and his wife were loyal mem- 
bers of the Catholic church of that city and are buried at Fort Dodge. 
They were the parents of fourteen children, twelve of whom are 
living. 

M. B. Daly was reared at home and received his early education in 
the public schools of Lehigh, Iowa. After completing his school 
years he was engaged in the mercantile business with his father in 
Lehigh, the latter having established the business where E. L. Woodle's 



80 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

store now stands, and in addition to his mercantile interests Mr. Daly- 
was interested in the operation of a coal mine, which was later sold, 
but he continued to maintain and operate his coal yards in addition 
to his store. He later sold his store and purchased the Bird Supply 
Company, a general merchandising establishment located in South 
Lehigh. That property he successfully operated for two years, after 
which time he changed his location and established his business in 
the Tyson block, where he has since continued and has met with 
gratifying success. He carries a full line of rubber goods and gen- 
eral merchandise. He delivers his sales to the city trade and also 
has a substantial trade from the surrounding country within a dis- 
tance of four or five miles from his store. He is one of the principal 
stockholders of the First National Bank of Lehigh. 

Mr. Daly was united in marriage on the 29th of November, 1906, 
to Miss Mary E. Powers, a daughter of Thomas and Ellen Powers. 
Mr. Daly is affiliated with the democratic party and has his fraternal 
relations with the Knights of Columbus, belonging to Fort Dodge 
Lodge, No. 613, and is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of 
America of Lehigh. He and his wife are members of the Catholic 
church. Mr. Daly, from the early period of his young manhood, has 
been constantly engaged in business enterprises in Webster county, 
and for many years has been numbered among the representative men 
of Lehigh. His well known reputation for integrity in business mat- 
ters and the uprightness of his character have placed him among the 
desirable and useful citizens of his countv and state. 



CH.\RLES A. AXDEKSOX. 

Charles A. Anderson is one of the enterprising agriculturists of 
Webster county, Iowa, where he is successfully operating a stock and 
grain farm of one hundred and seventy-five and one-half acres located 
on section 6, Burnside township. He was born July 28, 1866, and is a 
son of J. S. and Emma Elizabeth (Lundgren) Anderson, both of 
whom were natives of Sweden, and with their family of two chil- 
dren emigrated to the L'nited States and settled in Henry county, 
Illinois, and later the father established his home on section 33, Clay 
township, Webster county, Iowa, in 1874. J. S. Anderson was twice 
married. He and his first wife were the parents of six children; 
Charles A., the subject of this sketch; Mrs. Anna Lundquist, a resi- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 81 

dent of Nebraska; Mrs. Amanda Larson, who resides five miles 
northeast of Gallary, Clay township ; Mrs. Agnes E. Sedholm ; Robert, 
whose home is located three miles northeast of Gallary; and Paul, 
who is living five miles northeast of Gallary, Iowa. The last three 
named were born in Webster county, Iowa. By his second union 
Mr. Anderson had a family of six children, all of whom are de- 
ceased. He belongs to the democratic party and is a member of the 
Swedish Lutheran church. 

Charles A. Anderson was reared at home and receixetl his educa- 
tion in the public schools of Webster county, Iowa. He later taught 
school in Clay township for four years, and in the spring of 1893 he 
purchased from Thomas Wright of Fort Dodge, a fami of one hun- 
dred and seventy-five and one-half acres, for years known as the 
McBane place. At the time Mr. Anderson purchased the farm it was 
all unbroken prairie land and he has since improved the property with 
suitable farm dwellings and brought the land to a high state of culti- 
\ation. The county drain runs directly through his land, thus afford- 
ing a perfect drainage for every acre of land. On this property he 
has since been engaged in agricultural pursuits and makes a speciality 
of high-grade cattle and thoroughbred hogs and horses. Mr. Ander- 
son maintains his residence at Fort Dodge and drives to his farm 
nil innings and at the close of the day returns home for the night. 
He has been a trustee of Burnside township for a number of years and 
is known as one of the reliable and enterprising citizens of that town- 
ship of which he has been a resident for nearly a quarter of a century. 



ARNOLD E. HOUGE. 



Arnold E. Houge, numbered among the younger business men of 
Webster county, is actively engaged in the conduct of a hardware 
establishment at Badger and in this connection is meeting with well 
merited success. His birth occurred in Badger township, this county, 
on the 3d of April, 1885, his parents being Peter A. and Elnora 
(Lindljerg) Houge, the former a native of Wisconsin and the latter 
of Webster county, this state. Peter A. Houge, who came to this 
county at an early date, turned his attention to the operation of a 
farm left him by his father and was actively engaged in its cultiva- 
tion and improvement until 1893, when he put aside the work of the 
fields and took up his abode in I'adger, where for se\eral years pre- 



82 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

viously he had conducted a hardware store. After coming to Badger 
he devoted his entire attention to that business, remaining an active 
factor in commercial circles here until he died. His sketch appears 
elsewhere in this volume. His widow has spent her entire life in 
Webster county and is well known and highly esteemed within its 
borders. 

Arnold E. Houge obtained his early education in the schools of 
his native county and subsequently attended Drake University at Des 
Moines. After putting aside his text-books he came to Badger and 
embarked in the hardware business as a partner of his father, at whose 
death he became sole proprietor of the establishment. He carries an 
extensive line of shelf and heavy hardware and enjoys a liberal 
patronage. In addition to his store Imilding he owns an attractive 
residence in the town of Badger. 

On the 2d of June, 1909, Mr. Houge was united in marriage to 
Miss Gertrude Peterson, a daughter of Rasmus and Rhoda Peterson. 
They have one child, Doris Evelyn, who is in her second year. Mr. 
Houge gives his political allegiance to the republican party and is ably 
serving as a member of the town council. His religious faith is that 
of the Lutiieran churcii, wiiile fraternally he is identified with the 
Modern Woodmen of .\merica, acting as clerk of the local lodge of 
that order. .V man of high worth and sterling integrity, ilr. Houge is 
widely respected and esteemed in the community which has always 
been his home. 



JOHX A. LIXD. 



John A. Lind has been a resident of Iowa since 1876. He is the 
president of the Harcourt Savings Bank, and since 1908 has been 
postmaster of Harcourt, in which city he resides. He was born in 
I'^olkoping, Sweden, May 4, 1848. and is a son of .\ndrew and Kate 
(Jackson) Swanson, both of whom were natives of Sweden, where 
the father followed farming. He emigrated with his family to Amer- 
ica in 1866, and upon reaching the port of New York the ship was 
quarantined for seven weeks on account of its having on board seven 
hundred passengers who were afflicted with cholera, among whom 
was the father of the subject of this review. He was removed to a 
hospital where he died and was Ijuried in Xew York. The mother 



HISTORY OF WEIiSTER COUNTY 83 

with the sur\i\-ing members of her family settled in Rockfonl, Illi- 
nois, at which place a sister of our subject was living. 

John A. Lind, after establishing his home in Rockford, took up work 
in the foundry of the X. C. Thompson Company at that place and 
continued in that occupation until he came to Webster county, in 1868, 
and purchased a farm of one hundred and twenty acres, after which 
he returned In Rockford. where he again engaged in foundry work 
until 1874. In that year he went to his farm and cultivated the land 
for one year and then returned again to Rockford and engaged in 
work for a similar length of time. In 1876 he made his permanent 
settlement on his farm in \\'ebster county and was continuously 
engaged in agricultural inirsuits for the twenty-sex'en years follow- 
ing. He is now the owner of two hundred and forty acres of highly 
developed land. In 1903 he established his residence in Harcourt. 
where he has since continued to reside. He is president of the Har- 
court Savings Bank, and in Xovember. 1907, received the appoint- 
ment as postmaster of Harcourt and has since continued in that 
office. 

Mr. Lind was married in 1871 to Miss .Amanda Clay, a daughter 
of Andrew Clay of Rockford, Illinois. The father was a native of 
Sweden and is now deceased. To Mr. and Mrs. Lintl have been born 
seven children. Jennie married August Peterson, who is engaged 
in the butcher business in Harcourt, and they now have eight chil- 
dren. Victor, who is a leading meat dealer of Boxholm, is married 
and has four children. Oscar, an agriculturist of Lost Grove town- 
ship, is married and the father of three children. Emily became the 
wife of Oscar Schill, a farmer of Lost Grove town.ship, and is the 
mother of two children. Arthur, who operates the old homestead, is 
married and has two children. Afarlin. who is married and has two 
children, is engaged in agricultural jjursuits. Esther became the wife 
of h'rank D. Carlson, a railroad employe at Davenport. Iowa, and 
now resides in that city. The mother of this family died on the 
home farm in Lost Grove tow-nship, September 29, 1880, and in Feb- 
ruary. 1886, the father wedded Miss Anna Johnson, a daughter of 
Mr. and Mrs. A. Ephraim Johnson. To this union four children were 
born: llilma, a student in Drake University at Des Moines, Iowa; 
Reuben, a resident of Boxholm ; and Mamie and Roy, who are attend- 
ing Tobin College at Fort Dodge, Iowa. 

Mr. Lind is affiliated with the republican ])arty and has served 
as road supervisor and assessor of Lost Grove township. He has 
been a member of the board of su])er\'isors for seven years and 



84 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUXTY 

trustee of the township for six. He and his family are members of 
the Swedish Lutheran church of Harcourt. During his residence in 
Iowa he has steadily gained in the esteem of the people of Webster 
county and has for many years been placed by public opinion among 
the enterprising and public-spirited citizens of his portion of the 
state. 



GEORGE SCHXURR. 



George Schnufr is well known in business circles of Webster county 
as one of the proprietors of the Kalo Brick & Tile Company, which 
plant he purchased in partnership w ith his brother William a number 
of years ago. At the present time he is serving as postmaster of Otho, 
where he makes his home. He was born in Buffalo, Scott county, 
Iowa, on the 14th of February, 1874, his parents being Andrew and 
Amelia (Haase) Schnurr, more extended mention of whom is made 
on another page of this work in comiection with the sketch of \\i\- 
liam Schnurr, a brother of our subject. 

George Schnurr accomi)anied his parents on their removal to this 
county, when six years of age, and here obtained his education. After 
leaving school he went to work in the coal mines, being thus em- 
ployed until 1893. ^" ^'I'l'^ year, in association with his brother and 
father, he embarked in the lumber and grain business at Otho. Later 
he and his brother William purchased the brick and tile plant of John- 
son Brothers near Kalo, which they have operated to the present 
time, under the name of the Kalo Brick & Tile Company, enlarging it 
as the business grew and expanded under their capable mangement. 
At the present time their daily output is about eight carloads. George 
Schnurr is the president, a stockholder and a director of the Otho 
Mercantile Company, the other officers of that concern being as fol- 
lows : William Schnurr, treasurer; John D. Fortney. secretary; Paul 
Scheerer, vice president; and O. C. Hanson, manager. Our subject is 
a stockholder in the Leighton Supply Company of Fort Dodge, Iowa, 
the Monarch Telephone Company of b"ort Dodge and the Fort Dodge 
National Bank. He owns an attractive residence in Otho and he and 
his brother William have an excellent farm of three hundred and 
twenty acres in this county. He possesses untiring energy, is quick 
of perception, forms his plans readily and is determined in their execu- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 85 

tion, and his close application to business and- excellent management 
have lirought to him llic prosperity wliicli is today his. 

On the 7th of Xovember, 1895, Mr. Schnurr was joined in wed- 
lock to Miss Cora Fortney, a daughter of David and Isabelle (Todd) 
Fortney, of whom more extended mention is made on another page 
of this work in connection with the sketch of George William Fort- 
ney. a brother of Mrs. Sclmurr. Mr. and Mrs. Schnurr ha\e one 
child. Gilbert A., who is fifteen years of age. 

5ince age conferred upon him the right of franchise George Schnurr 
has supported the men and measures of the republican party, believing 
that its principles are the most conducive to good government. He is 
serving as postmaster of the town of Otho, ably discharging the duties 
devolving upon him in that connection. In religious faith he is a 
Methodist, while fraternally he is identified with the ^lodern Wood- 
men of America. High and manly principles have characterized his 
entire life, winning for him a creditable position in the regard of his 
fellowmen. 



WILLLAAI J. McDERMOTT. 

Although the life of William J- JMcDermott has not been in any 
way extraordinary, his opportunities have been intelligently utilized 
and his energies directed toward the achievement of success. He is 
a native of Wel^ster county, his birth having occurred in Pleasant 
Valley township, in Xovember, 1869. and a son of Ambrose and 
Bridget (Lahiffj McDermott. Both are of Irish lineage, although 
the father is a native of Iowa, while the mother was born in New 
Hampshire. .\mbro'se McDermott came to \\'ebster county in 1866, 
locating in Pleasant \alley township. Later lie removed to Fort 
Dodge and established a lilacksmith sho]), wliicli lie conducted for sex- 
era! years. At the expiration of that time he purchased forty acres of 
land in Jackson township and once more identified himself with agri- 
cultural pursuits. His efforts in this direction were well rewarded 
and he was subsequently a1)le to extend his iioldings until lie iiad ac- 
quired two hundred acres of fertile land. He energetically applied 
himself to the further improvement and cultivation of his farm until 
1902, when he retired from active work. His death occurred on 
September 20, 1912. 



86 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

William J. AIcDermott was reared at home and educated in the 
public schools. He assisted his father in various ways about the 
farm until he had attained his majority, when he left home and 
started out for himself. Purchasing eighty acres of his father's hold- 
ings in Jackson township he engaged in farming for himself, con- 
tinuing his agricultural pursuits for about nine years. At the expira- 
tion of that time he sold his place and coming to Clare went into the 
insurance and real-estate business, which he has since followed. He 
has won the success that invariably rewards diligent effort and well 
defined purpose and in addition to a fine residence property in Clare, 
owns a farm of a hundred and seventy-five acres in Clay county, Iowa. 
He was one of the organizers of the Clare Mutual Telephone Com- 
pany and owns stock in this enterprise, of which he is manager. 

In June, 1906, Mr. McDennott was married to Miss Anna T. Hood, 
a daughter of John T. and Bridget (Rial) Hood, natives of Canada 
and Pennsylvania, respectively. Two children have been born of this 
marriage: Howard A., who is four years of age; and Isabelle, who 
is two. 

The parents are communicants of the Roman Catholic church and 
fraternally Mr. McDermott is affiliated with the Knights of Colum- 
bus, the Catholic Order of Foresters and the Modern Woodmen of 
America. Politically he supports the democratic party. He was sec- 
retary of the school board in Jackson township for twelve years, and 
he also held the office of trustee. At the present time he is discharg- 
ing the duties of town clerk and is secretary of the independent school 
district. He is a man of laudable ambition, earnest purpose and un- 
ceasing energy, which qualities have constituted dominant factors in 
the achievement of his success. 



STEWART CARTER. 

'Ihe death of Stewart Carter occurred on Xoveniber i, 1861. He 
was born in Virginia, February 14, 182 1, and his parents, Edwin and 
Judith (Carter) Carter, were also natives of that state. They re- 
moved to St. Louis, Missouri, when the subject of our sketch was a 
child and he received his early training and education in the public 
schools of that city. Upon putting aside his books Stewart Carter 
entered the army, and his distinguished military sen-ice is still remem- 
bered and commented upon in St. Louis. He served the government 
as assistant paymaster during the war with Mexico, and after hostil- 



HISTORY OF WKBSTF.R COL'NTY 87 

ities had ceased he went to Washington, D. C, and was there (Hs- 
charged. He immediately returned to St. Louis and was acti\e in 
the banking business for many years. He was widely known as an 
honorable, sagacious and conservative financier, whose activities were 
largely responsible for the growth of the institution with which he 
was connected. He gained a reputation in St. Louis for the sound 
and concise policies, along which his banking transactions were con- 
ducted, and no breath of suspicion was ever connected with his name. 
He died on November i, 1861, after an illness of only fi\-e days. He 
left behind him a wife and three children to mourn his loss. 

Mr. Carter's marriage occurred I~)eceml).M- 14, 1854. His wife in 
her maidenhood bore the name of Mary Rhodes, who was born in 
\^irginia. February 9, 1835. She is a daughter of Hillary and Marion 
(Carter) Rhodes, who were prominent residents of Virginia, in which 
state her mother died when Mrs. Carter was eight years of age. After 
her death the husl)and and family rcmuved to St. Louis, Missouri, 
where the daughter Mary was reared and educated. Mary Rhodes 
was married in that city and after her husband's death removed with 
her children to Fort Dodge, Iowa, traveling here by stage coach at a 
time when there were no railroads. Li 1865 she bought the beautiful 
home of Dr. Pease on the corner of Fourth street and Fifth avenue, 
which was the residence of this first and well known physician in 
Fort Dodge. She resided here until 188 1, when she rented her prop- 
erty and removed to Des Moines, Iowa, where she made her home 
until May, i8g6. At the end of that time, however, she returned 
to Fort Dodge, and again took up her home in the old residence in this 
city, where she is now living. The house may well be termed 
one of the historical buildings in the city. It was built in 1857 
and the Ijrick for this building, which was one of the imposing 
structures of its day, had to be hauled by wagon from Dubuque, 
Iowa. The house was built for the purpose of a doctor's of- 
fice but it was also the home of other tenants which are of more or 
less interest to the general pul)lic. While the first courthouse was in 
course of construction and pending its erection, court was held in 
the upper story of the house and at the same time a Iiasement room 
was used as the postoffice. In another ])art of the lower story was 
conducted the only drug store existing at that time in the city. The 
house even today, after standing over fifty years, is in an excellent 
state of preservation and here Mrs. Carter still makes her home. The 
site where it stands is that of old Fort Dodge and the band stand 
in the city jiark now occu])ies land where the old ])arade grounds were, 



88 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

while the new Wauhkonsa school stands on the place where once the 
soldiers' mess house was. Mr. and Mrs. Stewart Carter were the 
parents of three children, namely: Edwin S., who died in 1883 when 
he was twenty-five years of age : John F., who died December 22, 
191 1, after an illness of only six days with typhoid pneumonia, and 
who was a prominent and wealthy jeweler of Fort Dodge and pro- 
prietor of the Carter Jewelry Company, which enterprise his widow 
is now conducting; and Anna S.. who is residing with her mother. 

Mrs. Carter and her daughter affiliate with St. Marks Episcopal 
church of Fort Dodge, and are well and favorably known in religious 
circles of that city. The prosperity which they now enjoy they owe to 
the efforts of Stewart Carter whose activities in financial circles of St. 
Louis resulted in his accumulation of a comforable fortune. The 
character of the work which he did during his life and the prominence 
of the place which he obtained were evidenced In- tiie deep regret 
which attended his death. He won prosi)eritv. but he was a man who 
valued the respect and esteem of his friends higher than business suc- 
cess, and was happy in the attainment of both ambitions. 



M AF'JY ALICE CAREY. 



Mary .Mice Carey is tilling llic position of county superintendent 
of scluKils and is making an e.xccllent record in that connection. She 
has given proof of her ability as an educator and she keeps in close 
touch with the most advanced ideas on educational matters. A native _ 
of Hazclton, Luzerne county, Pennsylvania, she is a daughter of 
James and Mary (McCabe) Carey, who were natives of Ireland, thc 
former l)orn in County Tipperary and the latter in County Cavan. 

Mai-y Alice Carey was Iirought to Fort Dodge in early girlhood and 
has here s])ent the greater part of her life. She was educated in the 
parochial schools and w-as graduated from the Lady of Lourdes Acad- 
emy, in charge of the Sisters of Mercy. She then began teaching, 
having charge of a school in Buena \'ista county, while later she be- 
came a teacher of Webster county, l^eing identified with the work of 
the schools here for twenty-eight years. Li this connection she made 
a creditable record, imparting clearly and readily to others the knowl- 
edge that she had acquired. She was appointed county superintendent 
of schools in September, 1909, to fill out the unexpired term of E. E. 
Cavanaugh, who resigned, and in 1910 she was elected to the office. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 89 

She has always been interested in educational matters, seeking prog- 
ress along those lines, and she takes an active part in teachers' meet- 
ings. Her religious faith is that of the Catholic church. She be- 
longs to the Catholic Order of Foresters and is president of the Young 
Ladies's Sodality of Corpus Christi church. 



ERNEST L. WEISS. 



Ernest L. Weiss owns and cultixates a large farm in Cooper town- 
ship, Webster county, and by constant application has gained an en- 
viable degree of prosperity. He was born in Cook county, Illinois, 
where Maywood is now located, on the 14th of May, 1864, a son of 
F. L. and Rcinhekla (Gunther) Weiss. The father came from Ger- 
many to America with his parents when he was but sixteen years of 
age. The family located in Cook county and in that early day fre- 
quently drove with ox teams to Chicago when there were only two 
stores in that city. The grandfather entered land in that vicinity and 
the father at one time owned the property upon which the Chicago 
& Northwestern Railroad tracks from Chicago to Maywood are now 
laid. He improved his farm and was engaged in operating it until 
1870, when he disposed of it and came to \\'ebster county, Iowa. In 
this county he purchased'one hundred and sixty acres in Cooper tow n- 
ship at fifty dollars an acre and later added ten acres. He immediately 
began improving the property and was busily engaged in clearing and 
cultivating it until 1890. In that year he rented his property, retired 
and removed to Fort Dodge, where he resided until his death, which 
occurred May 25, 1893. The mother passed away in February, 1901. 

Ernest L. \\'eiss acquired his education in the public schools of 
Fort Dodge. Being but six years of age when his parents removed 
here, he has spent almost his entire life within the confines of the 
county. Until his. father retired and removed from his farm he re- 
mained at home. Afterward he rented the farm, which he operated 
until 1896, the year in which he purchased the home place. His entire 
active career has been spent upon the farm and during that period he 
has been a most active factor in bringing its fields under a high state 
of cultivation and he has made many substantial improvements. Few 
farms in Cooper township present a more thrifty appearance. Not 
only is it all under a high state of culti\ation but the buildings and 
machinery with which it is equipped are all of the most modern and 



90 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

improved kind. Mr. Weiss raises from fifty to ninety head of hogs 
each year and keeps about twenty-five head of cattle and eleven head 
of horses. He also cultivates one hundred and seven acres of rented 
land. 

On the 24th of IMay, 1888, Mr. Weiss was married to Miss Bertha 
Weiss, a daughter of Ernest and Wilhelmina (Beecher) Weiss, 
natives of Germany. The father came direct to Webster county, 
Iowa, when he left hii; native land in 1876 and immediately accepted 
employment in the Coalville inines. For about five years he worked 
there before going to Humboldt county and purchasing forty acres of 
land, w hich he immediately began to improve. As he was financially 
able to do so, he purchased additional property and at one time he 
owned four hundred acres. He was engaged in agricultural pursuits 
until his death, which occurred on the 14th of May, 1898. The 
mother's death occurred. January 13, 1908. To Mr. and Mrs. E. L. 
Weiss five children iia\e been born: Alma, who is the wife of the 
Rev. William Schaffer and resides in Martinsburg, Nebraska; Alvin, 
Walter and Emma, all at home ; and IMatilda. who is attending the 
German Lutheran school at Fort Dodge. 

In his political views Mr. Weiss has long been a stalwart democrat 
and. though he has not been a ]:)olitician in the sense of seeking 
ofiice, he is ever loyal to the best interests of the community and has 
served as road supen-isor of his township. He is a stockholder in the 
German Investment Company and also the Commercial National Bank 
of Fort Dodge. In his religious faith he is a Lutheran and he and 
his family hcil<l mcmlicrslii]) in tlie 'German Lutheran church of Fort 
Dodge. Prominent in the county where he has resided for many 
years, he well deserves representation in this volume, for his social 
qualities have made him many friends, while his business record is 
creditable and cn\iable. 



HUGH COLLINS. 



Hugh Collins was among the early settlers of W'ebster county, 
taking up his abode in Jackson township in 1855. He was a native 
of Ireland and followed farming as his life occupation, passing away 
on the 9th of September, 1889, just two 3-ears after the death of his 
wife, Mrs. Catherine CRussell) Collins. Their son, Michael H. Col- 
lins, is at the present time, cashier of the State Bank of Clare, which 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 91 

is one of the firmly established and conservati\e financial institutions 
of Webster county, with a paid up capital of twenty-five thousand 
dollars. Its officials all, are men of recognized business ability and 
well tried integrity whose honorable dealings and sound principles 
have won them the confidence of the communitv. 



JOHN F. FORD. 



John F. Ford is well known in business circles of Fort Dodge as 
proprietor of the Berryhill Book and Stationery Store and promi- 
nently identified with the public life of the city as the mayor of Fort 
Dodge. He was born in this city, on the 25th of November, 1864, 
his parents being Walter and Mary (Gar\'ey) Ford, both of whom 
were natives of Ireland. The father came to America in 1855, locat- 
ing immediately in Fort Dodge, Iowa. He spent a number of years 
as a teamster before he took up a claim in Pocahontas county, just 
across the line from Webster. For twenty years he was occupied in 
clearing and improving this property and during that time proved 
himself to be a most capable agriculturist. Disposing of his prop- 
erty, he removed to Clare, Webster county, where he lived retired until 
his death, which occurred in June, 1908. The mother passed away 
in 1883. 

John F. Ford pursued his education in the public schools of Iowa 
and remained at home until he reached his majority. At that time he 
engaged in farming independently, purchasing property in Webster 
county. Until 1S93 ^'^^ &3.ve his entire time and attention to cultivat- 
ing his farm and making it one of the most highly productive tracts 
in his section. In that year, however, he catne to Fort Dodge and 
entered the county auditor's office as deputy. He sen-ed in that ca- 
pacity for six years. By the end of that time he had shown his abil- 
ity and he was elected auditor, an office which he held for six years. 
Prior to that time he had purchased an interest in the Berryhill Com- 
pany, dealers in stationery and office supplies. Consequently, upon 
leaving the auditor's office he entered the Berryhill Company and 
was made its manager. At a later date he purchased the entire stock 
and he is now conducting the store at Nos. 919-921 Central avenue. 
He deals exclusively in books and stationery and his accurate knowl- 
edge of his stock, combined with good business ability, has made his 
venture a success from the beginning and his investment a profitable 
one. 



92 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

On the 27th of September, 1893, Mr. Ford was married to Miss 
Nellie Howard, a daughter of Patrick and Mary (Butler) Howard, 
natives of Ireland, who came to America at an early day and located 
in Canada. The father's death occurred in that country and the 
mother removed to Fort Dodge, Iowa, where she was later married 
to Thomas Brennan. an agriculturist of Webster county. To Mr. and 
Mrs. Ford five cliildren have been born, Howard, Ellen, Charlotte, 
Mary and Alice. 

Mr. F'ord gives his support to the republican party and in March, 
191 1, was elected mayor of Fort Dodge under the commission plan 
of government. In religious faith he is a Catholic. He holds mem- 
bership in the Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Modern Wood- 
men of America, the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, The 
Knights of Columbus and the Improved Order of Red Men. He is 
a congenial, affable man, who by reason of his enterprise, persever- 
ance and business capacity has taken a prominent place among Fort 
Dodge's successful citizens. 



'lina'LIOL'S McXEELY. 

Theulious McXeely was l)nrn in Illinois, April 16, 1838, and 
died in Duncombe, Iowa, on January 9, 1910, in his seventy-second 
year. During his long life he had many claims to the respect and es- 
teem of his fellow citizens. He was an early settler in Webster coun- 
ty, a prominent and successful farmer and an honored veteran of 
the Civil war. His death was widely and deeply regretted, for his 
upright life and his liigh standards of conduct had gained him many 
friends. He was a resident of Webster county for over half a cen- 
tury, coming to Washington township in 1855 with his parents from 
Illinois. He was a son of James and Martha ( Broomhall) McXeely, 
the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Virginia, 
both of Irish ancestry. The father was a tailor by trade and worked 
at that occupation in Illinois for some years. Upon coming to Web- 
ster county he purchased one hundred and eighty acres of land in 
Washington townshi]), which he improved and operated until his 
death in 1884. He was svu-vived by his wife until the fall of 1893. 

Theulious McNeely was reared and educated in Illinois and was 
sixteen years of age when he came to Iowa, and remained at home 
until January, 1862, when he enlisted in Company D, One Hundred 



n 





U^j yiY^'t^J'^^'w 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 95 

and Sixtieth Iowa Volunteer Infantry. On Septemlaer 19, of the fol- 
lowing year, at the battle of luka, Mississippi, he received a severe 
gun-shot wound and was soon afterward again disabled. On account 
of this he was disqualified for further service and returned home 
settling upon his father's farm. He remained at home until the 
father's death when he inherited the three hundred and twenty acres 
which constituted the homestead. He made many improvements 
upon the property and operated it until 1893, when he retired from 
active life. During the years in which he followed general farm- 
ing he gained a gratifying degree of success by always following mod- 
ern and progressive methods and keeping abreast of agricultural 
advancement. When he abandoned farming he moved to Dun- 
combe, where he erected a fine home in which he resided until his 
death, which occurred on January 9, 19 10, after a few months' 
illness. 

On December 26, 1859, ]\Ir. McNeely was united in marriage to 
Miss Eugenia Serrissa Clark, a daughter of Joel and Betsy (Hill) 
Clark, the former a native of Vermont and the latter of Massa- 
chusetts. Her father came to Webster county, Iowa, in 1855 and 
purchased eighty acres of land in ^^'ebster township, which he cul- 
tivated and improved for a number of years, later buying forty ad- 
joining acres. Ele engaged in general farming until the outbreak of 
the Civil war when he enlisted in Company E, One Hundred and 
Sixtieth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, serving as fifer. He was later 
transferred to Company F, and was discharged after one year of 
service on account of sickness. He returned home and operated his 
farm in Webster county until his death which occurred in 1887. 
He had long survived his wife, who passed away in 1857. Mr. and 
Mrs. ]\IcXeely had an adopted son, \A'illiam, who passed away in 
1878 and also undertook the education of Mrs. McXeely's younger 
sister, who is deceased, Ixit whose daughter is now making her home 
with the wife of our subject. She was in her maidenhood Miss 
Genie Ford, and is now the widow of William Spike. 

In his political afiiliations Mr. McNeely was a consistent dem- 
ocrat. He was honored by his fellow citizens by election to the 
mayor's chair and served in that important ofiice for four years to 
the general satisfaction of the puljlic, making a record of which he 
had every reason to be proud. He was a member of the Modern 
Woodmen of America, his only fraternal affiliation. He was a de- 
vout adherent of the Methodist church, to which religion his wife 
also gives her allegiance. His death was the occasion of widespread 



96 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

regret, for his life had been in all its relations useful and upright. 
He attained success gradually, working his way forward until he 
occupied a foremost position among the leading agriculturists of this 
section of the state, his life proving conclusively that success is 
the result of determination and honoralile methods. 



EUGENE M DUNNING. 

For nearly forty years Eugene Dunning, a resident of Fort Dodge, 
has been in the livery business in this city. He was born in Kenosha 
county, Wisconsin, November 21, 1846, a son of C. P. and Rachel 
G. (Gordineer) Dunning. The father was a native of Scotland and 
was one of the first settlers in Ripon, Wisconsin. He engaged in the 
livery and elevator business in that town for several years before re- 
moving to Chicago, where he resided until his death which occurred 
in 1901. The mother was a native of New 'S'ork state and her death 
occurred in 1903. They are buried at I-^ort Dodge. 

In the public schools of Ripon. Wisconsin, Eugene M. Dunning 
acquired his education. He resided there continuously until he was 
twentv-five years of age with the excei)tion of the time lie served in 
the Civil war. He enli.sted in Company B, Forty-first Wisconsin 
N'olunteer Infantry at the age of fifteen years. After his return home 
he completed his education. At the age of twenty-five years he came 
to Fort Dodge, Iowa, and engaged in the li\ery business. He had 
conducted a small establishment for seven years in Ripon and re- 
moved his stock here from that city. Because of his long connection 
with the business he is one of the most thorough horsemen and livery- 
men in Fort Dodge. 

Mr. Dunning has been twice married. In 1S71 he wedded Miss 
Josephine Ellis, a daughter of O. R. and Mattie (Benedict) Ellis, 
natives of Xew York state. To this union one child was born. Claude, 
now deceased. Mrs. Dunning"s death occurred in 1887. In 1889 
Mr. Dunning was married to Miss Addie Keltz. a daughter of Adam 
and Eliza (Wilson) Keltz, nati\es of renns\l\ania Init of Scotch de- 
scent. The father came to Boone, Iowa, at an early date, and edited a 
newspaper in that city. Subsequently he removed to Webster county, 
took up a claim and engaged in agricultural pursuits imtil 1898. In 
that year he retired and removed to Fort Dodge, where he resided until 
he went to Ocean Springs. Mississippi, to spend the winter. There he 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 97 

contracted smallpox wliich caused his death in 1900 The mother 
is living in Fort Dodge at the age of se\-enty-seven years. To Mr. 
Dunning's second union one child was born, Jean E., who is twenty 
years of age and is an accomplished musician, having for six years 
played clarinet in the Y. M. C. A orchestra and being leader of three 
organizations of that kind. 

Mr. Dunning is a republican. He iiolds membership in the Ma- 
sonic lodge and the Order of the Eastern Star. He is also affiliated 
with the Knights of Pythias, the Grand Army of the Repul)lic and 
the Iowa Legion of Honor. Mrs. Dunning is affiliated with the Pres- 
byterian church and the daughter is a member of the Congregational 
church. Mr. Dunning has a wide acquaintance in tlie city, where most 
of his life has been spent and where he lias had such a long business 
-career, and his strongly marked characteristics are such as commend 
him to the trust and friendship of his fellowmen. 



DARWIX GREEN. 



Darwin Green is successfully engaged in l)usiness as the juniijr mem- 
ber of tlie firm nf Dawson & Green, cnnducling a mercantile establish- 
ment at Otho. His birth occurred in Joliet, Illinois, on the 13th of -\u- 
gust, 1863. his parents being Charles and .\manda (Gifford) Green, 
both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. The father removed to 
Illinois at a very earl}- date and there worked at the machinist and car- 
penter trades until 1869. In that year he drove across the country 
to Iowa, locating in Humboldt county, where he remained until the 
spring of 1870. At that time he took up his abode in Fort Dodge, 
Webster county, where he worked at his trade and was employed as 
pattern maker in a fnundry. In 1885 lie remo\ed to Kalo and spent 
the remainder of his life in honorable retirement, passing away in 
the home of our subject in April. 1898. For two decades he had sur- 
vived his wife, who.se demise occurred on the 15th of .April, 1878. 

Darwin Green was reared and educated in Fort Dodge, Iowa, and 
after putting aside his text-books entered the service of the Rock 
Island Railroad. Subsetiuently he was employed as car checker by 
the Minneapolis & St. Louis Railroad for four years, on the expira- 
tion of which period that cor])oration sent him to Kalo as agent and 
operator. When the station at that point was closed he was sent to 
Otho in the same capacity and ably discharged the duties devolving 



98 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

upon him for about ten years. He then resigned his position and em- 
barked in the mercantile business in partnership with WilHam Daw- 
son, with whom he has since remained as the junior member of the 
firm of Dawson & Green. They carry an extensive stock and enjoy a 
well merited patronage, winning and retaining customers by reason 
of their straightforward and honorable business dealings. Mr. Green 
and his partner own the store building and the former also has an 
attractive residence in Otho. He is a stockholder in the Farmers 
Elevator Company of Otho and has long enjoyed an enviable reputa- 
tion as one of the prosperous and esteemed citizens of the comnumity. 

On the 22d of December, 1885, Mr. Green was united in marriage 
to Miss Lottie E. Weaver, who was born at Morrison, Illinois, in 
August, 1864, her parents being Benjamin and \\'ealthy (Johnson) 
Weaver, natives of Pennsylvania and Vermont, respectively. The fa- 
ther was of German descent, while the mother is of Scotch lineage. 
At a period when the Indians still inhabited this part of the country 
Benjamin Weaver journeyed to Illinois, taking up his abode at F^ul- 
ton. He there worked at the carpenter's trade for a number of years 
and subsequently removed to Morrison, Illinois, where he passed 
away in February, igoi. His widow, who has attained the age of 
seventy-eight years, makes her home with her children. 

Darwin Green is a republican and loyally supports the men and 
measures of that party. From 1903 until 1911 he served as post- 
master of Otho in a satisfactory and commendable manner. His re- 
ligious faith is that of the Methodist church, while fraternally he is 
identified with the .\ncient Order of United Workmen and the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows. He is popular both in business and 
social life and gains the respect and confidence of all with whom he 
comes into contact. 



J. AUGUST LlXDQUISr. 

J. August Lin<l(|uist is engaged in the men's clothing business in 
Govvrie, of which he is one of the enterprising and successful busi- 
ness men. He was born, March 6, 1858, and is a son of John and 
Mary (Ahlstrand) Lindquist. natives of Sweden, where the father 
died when the subject of this review was a child. The mother with 
the surviving members of her family emigrated to America in June, 
1865, and settled in Henry county, Illinois. She was later united in 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 99 

marriage to an uncle of our subject. Her second husband is a veteran 
of the Civil war and now resides in Dayton, Iowa. The mother died 
in Henry county in 1873. 

J. August Lindquist was reared in his mother's home and received 
his early education in the public schools in Illinois. After his school 
days he was engaged at work on a farm in Illinois until 1881. In 
September, of that year, he took up work with his uncle, who was 
engaged in the general mercantile business, and continued in that 
occupation imtil 1889. He then obtained the position as cashier in 
the Webster County State Bank and remained in that position for two 
and one-half years, after which time he returned to the general mer- 
chandising business of his uncle, with whom he remained for one year, 
when the business was sold to Hoff Brothers. He remained with the 
new firm for one year. In 1894 he established himself in the cloth- 
ing business in Gowrie, to which he has since continued to devote his 
attention. He operates his business under the firm name of Lind- 
quist Brothers. 

Mr. Lindquist was united in marriage in Gowrie, July 30, 1885, 
to Miss Olivia Larson, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Peter Larson. 
The father died in Henry county. To Mr. and Mrs. Lindquist three 
children were born: Daisy, who is the wife of A. C. Norman, a car- 
penter contractor of Gowrie, by whom she has one child, Ruth Norma ; 
Ruth, a graduate of the high school, who is a music teacher and or- 
ganist of the Lutheran church; and Carl G., who died in infancy. The 
mother of this family died in 1895 and the father was married in 
February, 1906, to Miss Adla Liljegren, a daughter of S. J. and Ma- 
tilda (Bloomquist) Liljegren. The father was a Lutheran clergyman 
and died at Kiron, Iowa. The mother now maintains her residence on 
a farm in Lost Grove township. Mr. Lindquist by his second mar- 
riage is the father of one son, Irving M., who was born September 
24, 1908. 

Mr. Lindquist is affiliated with the republican party and has taken 
a laudable interest in matters of public importance. In 1900 he was 
elected treasurer of Webster county and served in this office for four 
years with ability, discharging his duties with circumspection and 
promptness and looking after the finances of his county in just such 
a manner as he would after his own interests. His record based upon 
absolute integrity is well remembered and highly appreciated and must 
be a source of gratification to him. He has held various local offices 
in Gowrie and as member of the city council has become known as a 
man who stands for progress and improvement, having in no incon- 



100 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

siderable way contributed to the np-biiilding of his city and the wel- 
fare of its people. Mr. and Mrs. Lindquist are members of the Swed- 
ish Lutheran church. He is a man whose integrity in business af- 
fairs has never been questioned and one wiiose high ideals of character 
place him among the influential, desirable citizens of his city and 
county. 



JOHN D. FORTNEY. 



John D. Fortiiey, a successful and esteemed citizen of Otho, is well 
known in business circles as secretary, director and a stockholder of 
the Otho Mercantile Company and also as bookkeeper for the Kalo 
Brick & Tile Company. His birth occurred in Otho township, this 
county, on the 19th of December, 1876, his parents being David and 
Isabelle (Todd) Fortney, more extended mention of wliom is made 
on another page of this work in connection with the sketch of George 
\\'illiam Fortney. a lirother of our subject. 

John D. Fortney obtained his early education in the schools of 
Webster county and subsequently continued his studies in Ellsworth 
College at Iowa Falls, while later he entered Tobin College of Fort 
Dodge, Iowa. After leaving the latter institution, being well qualified 
for the work as he had been reared in the atmosphere of mercantile 
life, he went into the grain and live stock business in association with 
his father, who conducted a general store, also. When his father 
had sold out our subject became identified, in 1900, with the Great 
Western Elevator Company at Otho, remaining in charge of that 
business for five years. On the expiration of that period lie resigned 
and took charge of a farmers' elevator at Moorland, which he man- 
aged until the ist of February, 1908. He then accepted the position 
of bookkeeper with the Kalo Brick & Tile Company and in that ca- 
pacity has continued to the present time. He is also the secretary, a 
stockholder and a director of the Otho Mercantile Company, which 
concern owns a new and modern two-story brick building and car- 
ries a comprehensive stock of goods. The second floor of the struc- 
ture is used as an opera house. In association with his brother, 
George William, John D. Fortney owns an interest in a farm in Hum- 
boldt county. 

On the 6th of March, 1901, Mr. Fortney was united in marriage to 
Miss Elma Mclntire, a daughter of Elisha and Ann Mclntire, natives 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 101 

of Illinois. To Mr. and Mrs. Fortney have been born two children, 
as follows : ]\Iadge Lucile. whose birth occurred on the 30th of March, 
1903, and who died on the 6th of September. 1906; and Isabelle 
Maxine, whose natal day was March 16, 191 1. 

John D. Fortney gives his allegiance to the republican party and is 
now serving as trustee of Otho township, while formerly he acted as 
township clerk for many years. He belongs to the local organization 
of the Alodern Woodmen of America. A lifelong resident of Web- 
ster countv. he has been closely associated with its interests for a num- 
l)er of years and during that time has become widely known through- 
out the community, his many excellent traits of character winning 
him a circle of friends which is almost coextensive with the circle 
of his acquaintances. 



OLAF .MARTIX OLESON. 

Ulaf Martin Oleson was born in Stod parish, Trondhjem 
county, Norway, June 29, 1849, 'i'^ parents being Ole and Olava 
(Brunstad) Five, who were natives of the same country. The 
father was a schoolteacher for a number of years and at the same 
time carried on farming. He was recognized as a public-spirited 
citizen and capably tilled a number of public offices. Both he 
and his wife passed away in 1881, he being then about ninety-two 
vears of age. Their religious faith was that of the Lutheran 
church and to its teachings they were ever loyal. In the family 
were seven children, four sons and three daughters: Martha; 
Lorense; Eilert ; Caroline; Ingebrigt, who died in America; Ole; 
and Olaf. With the exception of the last named those still liv- 
ing are all residents of Xorw ay. 

O. M. Oleson was reared in llic land of the midnight sun and 
there received a common-scboul education. His early experi- 
ences were those of the farm boy but in his youth he made his 
way to Christiania. tiie capital, where he secured employment 
with a florist and l.indscapc gardener. Thinking that better op- 
portunities would lie afffirdcd in the new world, he came to the 
United States in 1870 and secured a position upon a farm near 
Fort Dodge, being thus employed for two years. .\t the end of 
that time he became connected with the drug trade and has 



102 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

continuously engaged in that business to the present time. He 
started in a small way but has built up a fine business. He grad- 
uated from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, in 1870. 

Selling good goods at the right price has been the principal feature 
in his success and as president of the Oleson Drug Company he 
is at the head of one of the important mercantile enterprises of 
the city. He is president of the Fort Dodge Telephone Company, 
of the Fort Dodge Light & Power Company, also of the Oleson 
Land Company, the Fort Dodge Hotel Company and the Iowa 
Trust & Live Stock Company. 

Mr. Oleson has been married twice. He first wedded Lucy 
Deming, a daughter of John and Mariette (Belcher) Deming, 
who came from the state of New Y'ork and lived in Webster 
county for many years. Mrs. Oleson passed away in 1904. Mr. 
Oleson was again married to Miss Julia Haskell, a native of 
this city and a daughter of A. E. and Martha G. Haskell, who 
were born in Connecticut but became early settlers of Fort 
Dodge. Her father was connected with staging in the early 
days both in Iowa and on the Pacific coast. Mrs. Oleson is a 
member of the Congregational church, while Mr. Oleson still 
belongs to St. Olaf's Lutheran church, of which he is treasurer. 
In politics Mr. Oleson stands with the progressive element which 
is seeking the betterment of political conditions and endeavoring 
to thwart the use of the party for individual or corporation inter- 
ests instead of promoting the welfare of the great majority. He 
was elected state senator and he represented his district in the 
upper house of the general assembly in 1892 and 1894. 



JULIUS C. FALLON. 

One of the enterprising and progressive agriculturists of Douglas 
township is Julius C. Fallon, who owns a well improved farm on 
section 9 in the cultivation of which he is meeting with success. He 
is a native of Webster county, his birth having occurred in the town- 
ship where he now resides on the 17th of August, 1870. His father 
was John Fallon, a native of Ireland, who came to America with his 
parents when a child of two years. The family located at Moore's 
Village and there John Fallon was reared and educated and acquired 
his early agricultural training. In 1866 he came to Iowa and pur- 
chased one hundred and sixty acres of land in Douglas township, this 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 10;-5 

county. He immediately began cultivating his farm, meeting with 
such success that he was later able to increase his holdings until at 
one time he held the title to four hundred and eighty acres. He was 
diligent and enterprising and the development of his property en- 
gaged his undivided attention until his death, which occurred on the 
9th of December, 1896. The mother of our subject, whose maiden 
name was Mary Gannon, is a nati\'e of New York city. She is 
seventy-two years of age and continues to make her home on the 
farm, where she has resided since early womanhood. 

Born and reared amid pioneer conditions, Julius C. Fallon passed 
his early life very much as did the other youths living in the rural 
sections of Iowa at that period. He attended the district school in 
the acquirement of an education, and during his spare hours assisted 
about the farm. At the age of twenty-two years he rented eighty 
acres of land from his father and began farming for himself. His 
training had been thorough and he was well qualified to begin his 
independent career, as is evidenced by the capable and successful 
manner in v^fhich he directed his undertakings. Six years later he 
purchased a part of the old homestead, on which he has wrought 
extensive improvements during the period of his ownership, making 
it one of the most valuable properties in the district. Subsequently 
he bought another eighty acres of the home place, but he sold this 
tract to his brother-in-law.' Since he never married Mr. Fallon em- 
ploys the services of a man and his wife, the former assisting about 
the farm while the latter tlocs the housekeeping. He engages in 
both diversified farming and stock-raising and is meeting with suc- 
cess in both lines of activity, as he gives careful attention to details. 
He annually markets about fifty hogs, raises such cattle as are 
needed about the place and keeps twelve head of horses. His pro- 
gressiveness is evidenced by the general appearance and condi- 
tion of his property and stock, as well as by the many modern 
conveniences and appliances which have been installed aI)out his 
farm. I lis eciuipment comprises every machine or implement 
deemed essential by the modern agriculturist, and he keeps a 
touring car for his convenience and pleasure. Mr. Fallon is dili- 
gent and enterprising and earnestly applies himself to anything 
he undertakes with the firm conviction that he is going to make 
a success of it, and this he invariably does. He takes great 
])ri(le in his farm and is constantly making plans for its further im- 
provement and development, and each year shows progress in tliis 
direction. He likes his work and enjoys the hfe of a farmer, and 



104 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

while he is fully aware of its disadvantages, feels that there are 
compensations. 

Despite the exactions of his business he has always devoted con- 
siderable time to local political affairs, supporting the democratic 
party. At the present time he is one of the county trustees, and is 
discharging his official duties in a manner highly satisfactory to his 
constituency and the community at large. He is a communicant of 
the Roman Catholic church. Fraternally he is affiliated with the 
Eagles, being a member of the lodge at F'ort Dodge. Mr. F""allon is 
popular and has many friends, as he possesses the affable and genial 
manner generally characteristic of the Celt, while in both business 
and public affairs he manifests those cjualities which universally com- 
mand respect. 



P. T. FLYNN. 



Varied and diversified business interests claim the attention of 
P. T. Flynn, one of Webster county's enterprising citizens, who 
for twelve years has been cashier of the Duncombe Savings Bank. 
His birth occurred in Pleasant Valley township, this county, in 
the month of August, 1870, his parents being Timothy and Emma 
(Burke) Flynn, natives of Ireland. The father came to the 
United States in 1849, fii'^t locating in Des IMoines. and to Weli- 
ster county in 1855. Later he took up a homestead in Cherokee 
county, industriously de\'oting himself to its further impro\'ement 
until 1870. In the latter year he disposed of his interests there 
and came to Webster county, continuing his agricultural pur- 
suits in Pleasant Valley township until his death in 1876. The 
mother had passed awa\' two years previouslw 

Left an orphan at the tender age of six years. P. T. Flynn 
was reared by his maternal grandmother, Airs. \\'iimifred Burke, 
where he worked on the farm and labored in and around the 
mines, attending the district school at such intervals when his 
labor was not required at home. So diligently did he apply him- 
self to study, both at school and during the long winter evenings 
at home, that at the age of nineteen he was teaching school on a 
first-grade certificate. With the money earned as a country 
schoolteacher, he entered Highland Park College of Des Moines, 
in September, 189T, from which institution he graduated in 1894. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 105 

After graduation, he again devoted himself to teaching and news- 
paper work, putting in some time as city editor of the Fort Dodge 
Chronicle in 189O. In 1897, he entered Drake University, Des 
Moines, spending a year in special work. In 1898 he went to 
North Dakota, where he received a state certificate and taught 
language, literature and higher mathematics in the graded 
schools. 

In 1900 he accepted the position of cashier in the Bank of Dun- 
combe, now the Duncombe Savings Bank. This enterprise, which 
is incorporated for twenty-live thousand dollars, is one of the 
conservative and thriving banking institutions of \\'ebster county. 
Peter Mallinger is president; B. J. Stack, vice president; P. T. 
Flynn, cashier; and L. V. Miller and John Heffner, assistant 
cashiers. They are all reputable men. of recognized business 
ability and high standards of integrity, who enjoy the confidence 
of the community by reason of their upright principles. Mr. 
I'lynn also engages in the real-estate business, in which he has 
met with a good measure of success, ha\ing acquired title to about 
one thousand two hundred acres of rich farming land around Dun- 
combe, besides valuable city property both in Duncombe and 
Fort Dodge. He is one of the shareholders in the Duncombe 
Cement Tile Company, and owns a one-third interest in the 
Duncombe Auto Company, which maintains garages both in 
Duncombe and Fort Dodge, Peter Mallinger and James Toohey 
being the other members of the firm. 

In June, 1899, Mr. F'lynn was united in marriage to Miss Agnes 
Latta, a daughter of Johnson and Elizabeth (O'Neil) Latta. To 
Mr. and Mrs. IHynn have been born the following children: 
Dorothy, who has entered her thirteenth year; Pauline, who is 
ten years of age; Carl, who has passed his eighth Inrthday; May, 
who has celebrated the fifth anniversary of her birth; and John 
and Ivathleen, twins, who are two years of age. 

Mr. and Mrs. Flynn are communicants of the Roman Catholic 
church, and fraternally he is affiliated with the Knights of Co- 
lumbusf the Benevolent Protective Order of I-llks and the Yeo- 
men. Despite the exactions of his extensive private interests, 
Mr. Flynn finds time to fulfill his civic duties, giving his political 
support to the democratic parly, and is now representing his 
ward in the town council. His business career has progressed 
in the orderly manner characteristic of the man of definite pur- 
pose, his carefully considered ])lans and capably concentrated 



106 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

powers having been directed toward a single achievement at a 
time. Both as a business man and citizen he has manifested those 
quahties which highly merit the respect and esteem he is accorded 
by his fellow citizens, many of whom are stanch friends of long 
years' standing. 



CHARLES ARENT. 



Charles Arent was numbered among the farmers of Webster 
county whose progressive and intelligent labors are forces in local 
agricultural development. He cultivated a line farm of three hun- 
dred acres in Badger township and by energy, industry and efficiency 
made it a model enterprise of its kind. He is now living retired in 
Badger, where he has just completed a beautiful modern home. Mr. 
Arent was born in Norway, September 20, 1853, and is a son of 
Frederick and Able (Arent) Arent, natives of that country. The 
father farmed in Norway all his life and his death occurred there in 
March, i860. Two years later his wife with her three sons and 
two daughters came to America, settling in La Salle county, Illinois. 
She died on March 24, iiS84, in De Kalb county, Illinois, whither 
she had come with her family in 1868. 

Charles Arent completed an education begun in the schools of 
Norway in Illinois. He came to America with his mother when 
he was eight years of age and remained in La Salle county until 
1868. He had farmed independently for four years in Illinois 
and on coming to Iowa, in 1880, purchased one hundred and sixty 
acres in Badger township, which he developed and improved for 
a short time, selling it later in order to purchase eighty acres in 
the same section, which he improved along progressive lines. 
He constantly added to his property until at the time of his 
retirement he was the owner of three hundred acres, constituting 
a valuable and well equipped farm. This he was successful in 
operating until the spring of 1912, when he moved to Badger, 
where he is now living in his new residence. He is well known 
in the village and has many friends who honor him for his upright 
character and straightforward manners. 

On September 17, 1892, Mr. Arent was united in marriage to Miss 
Maggie Danielson, a daughter of Ole and Mary (Nelson) Danielson, 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COL'NTV 107 

natives of Norway. Thev came to the United States in 1866, settling 
in La Salle connty, Illinois, whence they later moved to Livingston 
county, that state. After a period of residence in that section they 
came to \^'ebster county, Iowa, where the father ])urchased a tract 
of land which he has imjiroved and. operated since that time. 

Mr. Arent is acti\ely interested in the growth and development 
of the village in which he li\-es and is a stockholder in various local 
enterprises, among them the Farmers Elevator Company and the 
Badger Telephone Company. Politically he affiliates with the Roose- 
velt progressive party, being a stanch admirer of Mr. Roosevelt and 
a believer in the principles for which he stands. He belongs to the 
Lutheran church. He has earned by diligent and useful labor the 
rest which he is now enjoying, ha\ing made his active life valuable 
in an individual and in a public way by keeping his business methods 
U])right and honorable and by adhering to high standards of citizen.ship. 



WILLIAM E. HAVILAXD. 

William E. Haviland, who is now living retired, has extensive 
property and financial interests in Webster county. He was born in 
Illinois, June 16, 1846, a son of John P. and Cynthia (Pepper) 
Haviland, both of whom were natives of Dutchess county. New 
York. The father removed to Illinois at an early date and settled in 
Dupage county, thirty-five miles from Chicago. He purchased an 
eighty acre tract of land, which he cultivated until \H(iz,. During 
that time he made many improvements and brought it to a in'gh 
state of productivity, later disposing of it at a good price. He came 
to Webster county, Iowa, in 1865, and purchased one hundred and 
seventy-fi\'c acres which he immediately began tn im])ri)vc. His 
death occurred on the 28th of February, 1880, and the mother i)assed 
away on the 2d of July, 1889. 

William E. Haviland was a pupil in the common schools of 
Illinois until he laid aside his text books to a.ssist his father in his 
agricultural pursuits (jn the hume farm. He came to Iowa with his 
])arents when he was about twenty years of age and remained with 
them until their deaths. William E. being an only child, the father, 
shortly before his death, deeded to him the home farm. 

Mr. Haviland has been twice married. On tiie 14th of July, 1868, 
he was wedded to Miss Catherine E. McMellan. a daughter of Dr. 



108 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

McMellan of Elmira, New York. Dr. McMellan was practicing medi- 
cine in Elmira until his death, while his wife's death had occurred 
many years previous. To Mr. and Mrs. Haviland one cliild was 
born, Nora E., who is an osteopathic physician in Grand Junction, 
Colorado, and the wife of R. D. Moore, also an osteopath. Mrs. 
Haviland's death occurred February i6. 1889. On the 25th of 
December. i8gi, ^Ir. Haviland was again married, this union being 
with Amelia A. Haviland. a daughter of J- B. and Saba (LaDue) 
Haviland. natives of New York state. The father came to Webster 
county in the early '503, and entered government land which he im- 
prox'ed and operated until his death, in 1899. The mother passed away 
in 1894. 

Mr. Haviland gives his pohcical support t<i the republican party, 
to which he has always been loyal. He has served the town efficiently 
as township clerk, township trustee and assessor, and is at present 
treasurer of the Cooper township school board. He lakes an active 
interest in religious affairs and is an ardent worker in church work. 
He holds membership in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. 

Although he is living practically retired at present, he still takes a 
deep interest in his farms. He also owns a farm near Huron, South 
Dakota, and one in Wisconsin. He is a stockholder in the Corn Belt 
Meat Producers Association, a packing company of Fort Dodge, 
and also a director in the I'armers Mutual Insurance Association and 
vice president of the Commercial National Bank of Fort Dodge. 
Because of the \ariety of his interests he is well known throughout 
the county, and his straightforwardness and enterprising s])irit have 
won him the respect of the entire comnnmity. 



JOHN I. RUTLEDGE. 



Iowa's greatness and prosperity is in a large measure due to its 
agricultural resources and development. The men who have given 
their energy and strength to improving the soil are responsible for 
present prosperous conditions. Many of the state's most fertile tracts 
are located in Webster county and have been brduglu to a high state 
of productivity through the activities of men who have spent their 
entire careers in agricultural pursuits. Among these is John I. Rut- 
ledge, who owns four hundred and ninety-six acres of valuable land 
in Cooper township. His birth occurred in Canada, .\ugust 11, 1853, 



HISTORY OF WEIJSTER COLW TV 109 

his parents being Crozier and Isabelle ( Rayburn) Rutledge. The 
father is of Scotcli-Irish descent and the mother of Canadian birth. 
Crozier Rutledge came to this country with his parents and located 
in Canada, where lie acquired Iiis education. As soon as he l)ecame 
old enough to start upon an independent career he engaged in the 
mercantile bu.siness at Charleston, Canada, and continued there until 
he readied the age of forty-three years, in wiiich year he was acci- 
dentally killed wiiile riding to Toronto, forty miles distant, to purchase 
goods. The mother passed away fifty years later. 

John I. Rutledge was reared and educated in Canada. He remained 
at home with his mother until 1873, when he was twenty years of age. 
At that time he came to Illinois and took charge of a farm for three 
years before lie returned to Canada fur a year's \isit. In the autumn 
of 1877 he came to Iowa and located at Fort Dtxlge. where he 
remained until he removed to Humboldt county and purchased one 
ciuarter section of land. For two years he was engaged in ini])roving 
and cultivating this proj^erty. Init at the end of that time rented it 
and went to O'lirien county, where for three years he had charge of 
a five thousand acre farm for F'allin Brothers. He then returned to 
Fort Dodge, where he was married, and moved to his farm in Hum- 
boldt county. .\ year later. liowe\'er, he sold that farm and came 
to Fort Dodge and rented his father-in-law's farm. Vuv twenty-two 
vears be was engaged in cultixating this propertv and during that 
time brought it under high cultivation and proved himself an agri- 
culturist of unusual worth. His determination to succeed, his unre- 
mitting energy and persistency were the salient cliaracteristics in 
bringing about his remarkaljle success. In 1907 he ])urcliased four 
hundred and ninety-si.x acres of land in Cooper township, and is still 
engaged in operating this farm. He has improved the property to 
such an extent that at present he has one of the finest farms in the 
county, provided with all modern equipments. In addition to general 
farming he has engaged in dairying and stock-raising, specializing in 
the lietter grades of stock. He has at jjresent eighty head of cattle 
and raises from one hundred to two humlrcd bead of hogs jier year. 
He keeps about thirty horses. 

In \])ril. 1884, Mr. Rutledge was married to Miss Carrie C. Coffin, 
a daughter of Lorenzo S. and Mary (Cha.se) Coffin. The father 
was a native of Xew Hampshire and the mother of New York state. 
The father came to Iowa in 1855 and took up a claim. F'rom time to 
time he increased his holdings and he now owns se\en liundre<! and 
twenty acres. He is at present eighty-nine years of age. The mother 



110 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

died in January, 1906. To Mr. and ^Irs. Rutledge seven children 
have been born: Inina: C, who is engaged in the dairying business; 
Isabelle M., who is teaching in the high school at Humboldt, Iowa; 
Rayburn S., who is attending Ames College; Catherine S., who is a 
student in the College at Grinnell ; Helen Chase, attending high school 
at Fort Dodge; and Ruth L., and Cora Elizabeth, both in school in 
Fort Dodge. 

In politics Mr. Rutledge affiliates with the republican party. In 
religious faith he and the members of his family are Congrega- 
tionalists. The material welfare of the community has always been 
of prime importance to him. He is one of the present trustees of 
Cooper township, and for ten years was trustee of Douglas township. 
The position he now holds as one of Webster county's most prominent 
agriculturists, has been won by industry, perseverance and patience, 
and comes as a just reward for the hardships he endured in earlier life. 



JAMES BASS. 



Among the residents of Dayton who came to Webster county 
when it was a frontier district and substantially contributed 
toward the upbuilding and development of the community is 
James Bass, who owns over eight lumclred acres of land in Veil 
and Dayton townships, much of which he bought directly from 
the government, in addition to some valuable Dayton property. 
He was born in North Carolina, April 27. 1832, and is a son of 
Edward and Mary (Saffley) Bass. He is of English and Irish 
extraction and represents the third generation of his family in 
America, his paternal grandfather being a veteran of the Revolu- 
tionary war and having participated in the battle of Bunker Hill. 
In 1835 Edward Bass removed with his family to Indiana and en- 
gaged in farming. Twenty years later he came to Iowa, purchas- 
ing two hundred and forty acres of land in Boone county, to which 
he subsequently added another twenty acres of timber land. 
There both he and the mother passed the remainder of their lives, 
his death occurring on the 3d of February, 1883, at the venerable 
age of ninety-four years, "his natal day having been the 17th of 
January, 1789. The mother survived him for three years, pass- 
ing away July 15, 1886. 




■m^^ '^OaAJ 




<yPtr<)/a'ni-fvj yj<fd<i 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 115 

James Bass, who was a child of three years when his parents 
left North Carolina, was reared to manhood in Owen county, 
Indiana. In the acquirement of his education he attended the sub- 
scription schools of that state until he was fourteen when he laid 
aside his text-books and began assisting his father with the work 
of the farm. He remained at home until he attained his majority, 
then started out to make his own way in the world. In the fall 
of 1S52, he came to Iowa, settling in Webster county. As he had 
never learned a trade, he went to work as a farm hand, being 
unfamiliar with any other occupation. Although he received 
meager wages, he was thrifty and temperate in his habits and 
soon accumulated sufficient capital to enable him to buy eighty 
acres of government land, for which he paid from a dollar and a 
quarter to a dollar and a half per acre. It was located seven miles 
northeast of Dayton in Yell township and has ever since been in 
possession of Mr. Bass and is known as the old homestead. He 
energetically applied himself to putting this under cultivation, 
meeting with such lucrati\e returns from his farming that he was 
able from time to time to increase his holdings until he now owns 
eight hundred acres of farming land, which he is renting. He re- 
sided on his homestead until March, i86g. when he withdrew 
from the active work of the fields and removed to Dayton. He 
has ever since made this city his home and owns a very pleasant 
residence on Main street, where he is living. 

Mr. Bass was married in 1857 to Miss Cassie Halloway, who 
was born in North Carolina on the 24th of ^larch, 1S37, and died 
in Dayton on the 3d of February, 1901. Her parents were also 
natives of North Carolina, and there the mother passed away 
many years ago. The father subsequently came to Webster 
county and made his home with our subject until just before the 
Civil war when he was married again. He died in February, 
1881, and is buried in the Beem cemetery, near Lehigh, this 
county. Nine children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Bass. Mary 
Jane, the widow of Taylor Scott, who lives at Gowrie, this county, 
has seven children: Hubert, Nellie, Grace, Clifton, Cassie, Wilson 
and Leo. Rachel A. married Charles C. Miller, a schoolteacher 
of New Mexico. Addie, the wife of Thomas Bragg, a farmer 
south of Gowrie. has five children. Sherman, who conducts a 
pool and billiard hall in Dayton, married Julia Cascbolt and they 
have three children: Orville. Efifie and Fay. Grant, who works 
in a cafe at Boone. Towa. married Cora Guthrie and they have 

Vol. II— 7 



116 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

three children : Halsey, Sylvia and Maxine. Miles, a rural mail 
carrier, married Jennie Nelson and they also have three children : 
Raymond, Marie and Mildred. Mina, the wife of Will Nichols, a 
traveling salesman of New Mexico, has two children, Velma and 
an infant. Elsie, who married Fred C. Esch, a clerk of Wyoming, 
has one child, Dorothy Adeline. Ella married Dr. L. E. Estick 
of Rockwell City, Iowa, and they have one child, Lewis Howard. 
On the 1st of March, 1906, Mr. Bass married Mrs. Anna Butler, a 
native of Canada and a daughter of John and Caroline Eliza (Bry- 
ant) Gates. The father, who was of Dutch extraction, was born 
in Kingston, Canada, and the mother in Ogdensburg, New Y'ork. 
He was a son of John Gates, who homesteaded one hundred acres 
of land, where the Kingston Market now stands in Ontario, 
Canada. When the War of 1812 broke out he went to the front 
and is supposed to have been killed at the Battle of the Windmill, 
at Prescott, Ontario, as he was never heard from afterward. 
His son, John Gates, the father of Airs. Bass, was one of the 
successful agriculturists of Kingston, Ontario, and acquired one 
thousand acres of valuable land in Frontenac county, upon which 
the youngest son, George Gates, is now residing. Mrs. Bass in- 
herited two hundred acres of land from her father, which is now 
rented to her eldest son, George Henry Ayerst. ]\lr. Gates 
passed away in Canada in 1889, and the mother, who was of Irish 
and American descent, came to Iowa and made her home with 
her son James Gates at Boone, until her death in 1901. Mrs. Bass 
was first married in 1861 to Francis Ayerst. of England. He died 
in Canada twenty-five years ago and she later became the wife of 
Charles Butler, a veteran of the Ci\il war and a native of the 
state of New York, where he likewise died. In 1904, she located 
in Boone, Iowa, and there she was married two years later to Mr. 
Bass. 

Mr. Bass, who has been a resident of Iowa for sixty years, has 
many interesting reminiscences to relate of the pioneer days. 
After the Indian massacre at Spirit Lake, there was a rumor of an 
uprising among the natives in this section and three hundred men, 
of whom Mr. Bass was one, under command of Johnson McFar- 
land and Joseph Thrift responded to the call to defend the set- 
tlers. They marched from Boonesboro to Webster City but as 
their services were not required they disbanded and returned 
home. In 1863, he again volunteered to fight the Indians under 
Captain Williams of Fort Dodge and went to Chain Lake to 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 117 

assist in constructing barracks for the protection of the settlers. 
Six months later they marched back to Fort Dodge and dis- 
banded. On the J 8th of Xovember, 1864, he enlisted at Fort 
Dodge in Company K, Sixteenth Iowa \'olunteer Infantry under 
Captain Slattman. Their regiment was ordered to report at 
Nashville, and there his company was detached and placed in the 
One Hundredth and Thirty-second New York Infantry. He had 
his first experience in battle at Fort Xegley, and from there they 
moved on Fort Lookout, and tlien ])artici]iated in the battles of 
Kingston and Goldsboro, North Carolina. At the latter point his 
company rejoined their old regiment, and passing under General 
Sherman's command marched to Raleigh. They were stationed 
there for two weeks before Johnson surrendered. Following this 
they had a two days review at that point, going from there to 
Washington, D. C, to participate in the grand review. His regi- 
ment was then ordered to report at Louisville, Kentucky, where 
they were stationed until July 9, 1865, when they were discharged. 
Air. Bass votes the democratic ticket and served as trustee in 
Yell township for several terms and was a school director there 
for many years. He is a member of Captain Dow-d Post, No. 329. 
G. A. R., of Dayton and Airs. Bass belongs to the Women's Relief 
Corps and the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Bass who has 
attained the venerable age of eighty years, has the distinction of 
never having made a deed or given a mortgage and still owns 
every piece of property he ever purchased. Mr. Bass still enjoys 
the best of health and is well and vigorous and has remarkal)Ie 
eyesight. He takes great satisfaction in his achievements as he 
began life in early manhood without any capital, and by his owmi 
industry, perseverance and capable management acquired a com- 
petence that has long enabled him to live in retirement, and still 
enjoy all comforts of life. 



SILAS M. DEAN. 



The career of Silas .M. Dean is the record of an intelligent and 
useful life spent in business fields of activity and always actuated by 
high standards of personal honor and business integrity. He is now 
engaged in the grocery business in Fort Dodge, Iowa, antl his pro- 
gressive methods and well tested integrity have won him a gratifying 



118 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

degree of success. He was born in Clay county, Iowa, June 14, 
1875, and is a son of Walter and Jane (Roberts) Dean. His father 
was born in North Carolina and came to Clay county about 1868. 
He was for many years one of the progressive and representative 
agriculturists of that region and he operated the farm, which he 
bought upon his arrival, until 1897. In that year he retired from 
active life and removed to Peterson, Iowa, where he now resides. 
He is a judicious and discriminating man and has added to these 
qualities a special knowledge of farm values, which has resulted in 
acquiring a competency. His investments are principally in Iowa 
land, and he gives his entire attention to the management of his 
holdings. Mr. and Airs. \\'alter Dean reside in Peterson, Iowa. 

The country schools of Clay county afforded Silas M. Dean his 
early educational privileges. He pursued his studies until he was 
twelve years old and then left home, removing to Jasper county, where 
he engaged in various activities, such as were obtainable for a lad 
of his years until he was fifteen years of age. In 1890 he came to 
Fort Dodge and worked in the emplo\- of various concerns in this 
city until he was twenty-three years of age. He constantly realized 
the fact that he was hampered by too short an education and as soon 
as he was able, entered the Capital City Commercial College at 
Des Moines and by wise improvement of every opportunity soon won 
an efificient knowledge of business. When he was twenty-three j^ears 
of age Mr. Dean enlisted in Company G, of the Fifty-second Iowa 
Volunteer Infantry, and served for three months. He was stationed 
at Chickamauga Park, where he became thoroughly conversant with 
the details of military order and the various army tactics. His 
regiment returned to Des Moines and spent one month in that city 
before they were mustered out, Octol)er 30, 1898- Air. Dean remained 
in Des Moines and obtained employment under a Mr. Thomas in the 
milk business. He followed this line of acti\ity for si.x years and by 
strict economy was enabled to rent Mr Thomas' farm at the end of 
that period. He carried on the enterprise along progressive and 
sanitary lines for five years and was successful to a gratifying extent 
In 1909 he returned to Fort Dodge and established a grocerv and milk 
business independently and has been active and successful in its opera- 
tion ever since. He has gradually branched out into other fields of 
activity and has become known in Fort Dodge as a representative 
business man. In September. 191 1, he purchased the stock of the 
Fort Dodge Coke & Coal Company and this concern owes its present 
flourishing condition to his efficient management. 



HISTORY OF WEI'.STER COUXTY 119 

On July 6, 1903, jNIr. Dean was united in marriage to Mrs. Maude 
(Bennett) DeLano, a daughter of Thomas and Mar/ (Hemdle) 
Bennett. The mother was born in Germany but came to America at 
an early date. The father was a native of Canada and in 1869 came 
to Webster county, wliere he operated a farm until 1891. In that 
year he retired and moved to Fort Dodge, where he resided until his 
death in 1897. His wife is still living and makes her home with her 
son-in-law, the subject of this review, and is now seventy-nine years 
of age. To Mr. and Mrs. Dean has been born one child, Walter 
Judson. Mr. Dean also has two step-children, Charlotte Marie and 
Allen Thomas. Mrs. Dean passed away on December 23, 1910, after 
a three years" ilness and her death deprived Fort Dodge of a charming 
and hospitable woman and her family of a devoted wife and mother. 

Mr. Dean gives his political support to the republican party. He 
is prominent in the .\ncient Order of United Workmen and in the 
Veterans of the Spanish \\'ar. He is a devout adherent of the Baptist 
church and with this faith his children also atfiliate. He is highly 
esteemed by his fellow citizens and enjoys the resi>ect of his many 
friends and acquaintances by reason of a well deserved business success 
and his clean, honorable, pri\-ate life. 



EDWTX V. BROWN. 



The death <<i Edwin \'. Hmwn on June 17. 1906, deprived many 
residents of l-'ort Dodge of a genial, kindly and loyal friend and the 
business circles of the city of a conspicuously able representative. 
Mr. Brown was for many years prominently identified with the 
retail tobacco trade, carrying on his business on the site where the 
First National Bank of Fort Dodge is now located. He was born in 
Oswego, New ^'o^k. July 17, .1838, and was a son of Cliester and 
Mar>' (Cook) Brown, both natives of New York, of German lineage. 
The father lived and died in his native state and was one of its suc- 
cessful farmers. He died Se])tember 17, 1899, having survived his 
wife by nine years, her death occurring. .November 10, 1890. 

Edwin V. Brown spent his early youth in New York state and was 
educated in its public .schools. He early heard the call of the sea and 
when he laid aside his books shipped on a whaling vessel, plying the 
waters around the northern part of .America and off the eastern 
coast for two yearsy during which period he never caught sight of 



120 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

land. He followed the sea for six years, but eventually abandoned 
this occupation to make his home in Minnesota. He intended to 
purchase land in that state and follow agricultural pursuits but was 
unsuccessful in finding a fami just as he wanted it and returned to 
New York. In the early "eos he went to Calhoun county, Iowa, and 
bought land which he proved and operated for two years. He there 
gained a thorough knowledge of modem agriculture and was success- 
ful as a farmer. He abandoned farm life, however, after two years 
of activity in this line and came to Fort Dodge to accept a position 
as traveling salesman for the Inilton Implement Company. Success 
attended his commercial efforts and for four years he was a valued 
and energetic representative for his employers. When he severed his 
connection with the Fulton Implement Company he went to Minne- 
apolis to enter the employ of Hooker & Manley. wholesale cigar 
dealers in that city. It was here that he first found an occupation 
entirely suited to his talents and tastes and his activities in the whole- 
sale branch of the cigar inisiness gave a definite vent to his ambitions. 
He applied himself to learning the details connected with the selling 
and buying end of the business and became familiar with the different 
grades of the product and was soon recognized as an expert in his 
chosen field of activity. He remained with Hooker & Manley until 
1885 and then returned to Fort Dodge to enter into business for 
himself. He established his store, which contained wholesale and 
retail departments, upon the site where the First National Bank is 
now located and here for many years he conducted one of the most 
flourishing and prosperous enterprises in this line in the city. His 
ambition and energy coupled with thorough and definite knowledge 
made his rise in the business world rapid and his hoiioral)le methods 
and strict integrity soon gained him many patrons. Eventually he 
was enabled to retire. He conducted his enterprise until 1902 and 
in that year closed his store and started upon an extended tour of 
the southern states. The poor condition of his health was an influen- 
tial factor in his determination to retire from business. He was a 
sufferer from asthma and his southern journey although it benefited 
him generallv had no lasting effect upon his health. He returned to 
Fort Dodge and made this city his home until his death on Jnne 17, 
1906, in his sixty-eighth year. His passing was widely and genuinely 
regretted by his many friends in the city and it deprived the business 
interests of Fort Dodge of a shrewd and discriminating man. He 
was well known throughout the city as an exemplary and thoroughly 
honest citizen and the place which he left in social and commercial 
circles will be difficult to fill. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 121 

On Xovember 26, 1871, Mr. Brown was united in marriage to Miss 
Mary Barr, a daughter of Andrew and Mary (Stewart) Barr, both 
natives of Ohio. The father left the latter state at an earlj' date and 
made his home in Minnesota, where he engaged in blacksmithing 
until tile outbreak of the Civil war. In 1S61 he enlisted in Company 
A, Third Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, and served during the entire 
four years with honor and distinction. He was wounded in the right 
arm and never afterward regained the full use of that member. 
After the surrender of the Confederacy he returned to Minnesota and 
thereafter followed the occupation of a veterinary surgeon until his 
death, which occurred in March, 1907, when he had attained the age 
of ninety-one years. His wife's death had long since preceeded his 
and occurred in April. 1877. To Mr. and Mrs. Brown were born 
two children: lulwin \'.. Jr. now in the thirty-ninth year of his age, 
who is employed by the Bythe Brick & Tile Company of Fort Dodge; 
and J. S.. whose birth occurred on July 17, 1875. ^^''S- Brown and 
her two sons reside at Xo. 806 First Avenue in a comfortable and 
commodious home which Mr. Brown purchased before his death. 

Politically Air. Brown was a stanch republican and actively inter- 
ested in the affairs of his community although he never held nor 
sought public office. He was a member of the Presbyterian church and 
to this faith his wife gives her allegiance. He was prominent in the 
Masonic order, having been initiated in Ashlar Lodge on July 16, 
1869. He attained a prominent position in the deliberations of that 
body during his life and was active in the affairs of the organization 
for many years. His life had a distinct influence upon the com- 
inercial progress of Fort Dodge. He had that talent for organization 
and management which is a necessary factor in development and 
upbuilding. He set for himself a high standard of business honor 
and he never deviated from his code. He made his life upright, 
worthv and genuinely useful and his death marked the passing of a 
valued and respected citizen and a thoroughly honest man. 



lOIi.X W. Ki.Ml'. 



Dr. John W. Kime. who in his practice is specializing in ihc treat- 
ment of tuberculosis, occupies a prominent place among those who 
liave in recent years given their attention to this I)ranch of practice, 
doing a uurk which is of untoldbenefit. Dr. Kime was I)c>rn in Siiclby 



122 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

county. Iowa, October, 1855, a son of Abraham and ^lary ( Baugh- 
man) Kime, both of whom were natives of Indiana. The father 
removed to Shelby county in 1852 and immediately entered land. 
Until the war broke out he was engaged in culti\-ating and improving 
this property. He enlisted in Company I, Twenty-ninth Iowa Volun- 
teer Infantry and served until the spring of 1863, when his death 
occurred as a result of black measles. After her husband's death 
the mother continued in the operation of the farm throughout the 
remainder of her life. She passed away in 1890. 

Dr. Kime was reared at home and his early education was acipiired 
in the puljlic schools of Shelby county. His training was supple- 
mented by a course of study at the State University at Iowa City, 
which institution he entered when he was eighteen years of age. He 
took a general college course and subsequently took up the study of 
medicine, graduating with the class of 1883. He afterward opened 
an office in Angus, Iowa, where he remained for one year before 
coming to Fort Dodge in 1884. He at once engaged in the general 
practice of medicine and is at present one of the most prominent 
physicians of this city. Realizing that tMs is an age of specialization 
and that the greatest good can be done by perfecting one's self in a 
particular line, he has made a special study of tuberculosis and at 
present is conducting a hospital on the north side of the city for the 
treatment of those afflicted with that disease. Close study and per- 
sonal investigation have gained him broad knowledge and made him 
most efficient in his chosen field of lalx)r. He has served as state 
lecturer on tuberculosis for the last three years. He holds member- 
ship in the Iowa State Medical Association, the National Tuberculosis 
Association and the Webster County Metlical Association. He 
utilizes every means at hand to adx-ance and promote his efficiency. 
His labors have been of a valuai)le character, and in all his professional 
practice he works toward high ideals. 

In August, 1884, Dr. Kime was married to Miss Sara Paugburn. 
a daughter of \\'illiam and Sabina Paugburn, natives of New York 
state. Mrs. Kime ably assists the Doctor in his professional work, as 
she herself has studied medicine and is a graduate physician. At 
an early date the father removed to Fayette county, Iowa, and was 
one of the pioneer settlers of that district. He entered land which 
he culti\ated until 1909, when he gave up agricultural pursuits and 
removed to Fort Dodge. His deati: occurred in this city in 191 1. 
The mother passed away in 19 10. To Dr. and ^Irs. Kime two 
children ha\e been born : ]\Iarion, who is sixteen years of age ; and 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 123 

Isabelle. aged nine. The family is affiliated with the Presbyterian 
church and Dr. Kime gives his political support to the republican 
party. He has served on the city council for two j'ears. He takes 
an active interest in everything that pertains to the welfare, growth 
and progress of the city. 



NICHOLAS J. WAGNER. 

For more than sixteen years Nicholas J. Wagner has been success- 
fully identifietl with the mercantile interests of Duncomljc. being 
numbered among the substantial l>usiiiess men of the town. He was 
born on the loth of May, 187 1. in Hamilton county, this state, and is 
a son of John and Angelica ( Chrisman ) Wagner, natives of Germany. 
The father when a young man of twenty-three years emigrated to 
the United States with his parents, who located at Aurora, Illinois. 
There he found employment in the shops nf the Chicago, Burlington 
& Ouincy Railroad, continuing in their service until 1868. In the 
latter year he resigned his position and came to Iowa, and purchasing 
a hundred and sixty acres of land in Hamilton county turned his 
attention to agricultural pursuits. He possessed the diligence and 
thrift characteristic of his nationality, and in the development of his 
interests met with such gratifying returns that he was able to add 
to his holdings from time to time until at one time they aggregated 
four hundred and forty acres. Ha\-ing accumulated a competence 
that warranted his retirement, he left his farm in iSi/i and remm-ed 
to Duncombe, where he passed away in January, 1906, at the age of 
sixty-eight years. The mother, who has passed the se\'cnty-fiinrlh 
anniversary of her birth still resides in Duncombe. 

There was no particular occurrence in the life of Nicholas J. 
\\'agner to distinguish his boyhood .-nid _\<iutli from that of other 
farmer lads of that period. His time was largely diviiled between the 
work of the school-room and that of the fields. His education was 
obtained in the public schools of Eagle Grove and Webster City, 
following which he gave his undixideil attention to the work of the 
home farm. Preferring a commercial to an agricultural career, he 
left the parental roof at the age of twenty-five years, and came to 
Duncombe. Here lie subseciuently formed a partnership with J. J. 
Clausen, with whom he was associated off and on for ten years. 
Later he bought the interest of Mr. Clausen in the enterprise and has 



124 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

ever since conducted the business with the exception of three years, 
when lie resumed farming. He has prospered in his undertakings 
and owns stock in the Duncombe Savings Bank and one of the 
vahiable residence properties of the town. He also holds the title to 
a farm of two hundred and eighty acres in Hamilton county and one 
of eighty acres located on section 3. Washington township, this county. 

On April 2-;„ 1898. Mr. Wagner married ^Miss Katie Bailey, a 
daughter of Francis and Ellen (Casey) Bailey, natives of Ireland. 
Six children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Wagner, in the following 
order : Anna, who has passed the thirteenth anniversary of her birth ; 
John Francis, who is eleven years of age; Kathleen, who is anticipat-_ 
ing her tenth birthday; Harold, who is six years of age; Bernice, 
whose death occurred in 1909 at the age of eighteen months; and one 
who died in infancy. 

The parents are communicants of the Roman Catholic church, in 
the faith of which denomination they are rearing their family. Fra- 
ternally IMr. Wagner is affiliated with the Knights of Columbus, and 
the Modern Woodmen of America. He votes the democratic ticket 
and is now and has been for some years a member of the board of 
trustees of \\'ashington township. He has also served on tlie town 
council and is a member of the school board of Duncombe. He is 
a man of positive purpose and definite ideas, who stands for progress 
in either public or private life, supporting by his energy and enthusiasm 
every movement he feels will advance the welfare of the community 
or promote its development. 



PERRY GRUX'ER. 



Tlie life record of I'erry Gruver is a record of a struggle against 
constantly increasing obstacles, through difficulties and hardships, to 
final success. He was aided in his Ijattle by energy and industry, 
a firm purpose and a determination to conquer. He has now achieved 
his ambition and is one of the most prosperous and respected farmers 
in Webster county, Iowa. He was bom near Ozark, Illinois, March 
15, 1839, and is a son of Abraham and Anna (Bluhbaker) Gruver. 
His father was born near Philadelphia in 1800 and received his early 
education in that state. He later removed to Kendall county. Illinois, 
and remained there until 1845 when he went to Clinton county. 
Iowa, where he died in 1866. He was a miner and worked at his 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUXTY 125 

occupation in Iowa and Illinois for some time and later followed the 
occupation of lumliering;. He was a stanch democrat and a member 
of the Christian church. His wife also was born in Fhiladcl])hia and 
was married there. She came with her husband first to Illinois and 
then to Iowa and died in Clinton in 1862. She was also a devout 
adherent of the Christian church. They were the parents of the fol- 
lowing children : Rosetta and Lydia, both of whom are deceased ; 
Isaac, deceased, who served three years in Company I, Twenty-sixth 
Iowa Regiment during the Ci\il war, taking part in twenty-five en- 
gagements without being wounded once; Elizabeth, the wife of Joseph 
Upergraft of Monmouth, Jackson county, Iowa; Marion, who served 
for one year in the Sixth Regiment, Iowa Yolunteer Infantr}', and is 
now living in Des Moines; Julia, the wife of Frank Burdick of Fort 
Dodge, Iowa; ]M. Gruver; and Haley, the wife of James Wood, de- 
ceased. 

Perry Gruver received his early education in the public schools of 
Clinton, Iowa, and remained at home with his parents until he was 
twenty-one years of age. When he had attained his niajurity he 
rentetl a tract of land in Clinton count}- and farmed u]K)n it for three 
years. .\t the end of that time he removed to Greene county, Iowa, 
where he purchased forty acres of farm land just south of the town 
of Lohrxille. For two years he cultivated his holdings in this section 
and made many impro\'ements. Subsequently, in 1870 he purchased 
land in Clinton county and lived upon his farm there for two years. 
He then returned to Greene county and farmed near Cedar Creek for 
two years. At the expiration of that period he aliandoned farming and 
went to Lehigh, Iowa, as an employe in the lilack Diamond coal 
mines. He spent one winter in this occupation and then remo\ed to 
Gowrie, where he worked on a section of the railroad during the 
summer. Leaving his family established in Gowrie Mr. Ciruver 
determined to try his fortunes as a trapper. He located his head- 
quarters at Sibley, Osceola count}-, Iowa, and trajjped in thai section 
of the country for a few months. He had a short time pre\ ious to 
this by strict economy and hard saving, amassed a sniall amount of 
money with which he had purchased land in Webster county. He 
then removed to his holdings in that section and in a.ssociation with 
his brother-in-law-, Gus A. Gurney, built a small house upon this land, 
which is still owned by our subject and occupied by his son. Isaac. 
His land in Webster county is located on section 35, Roland township. 
Here ^Ir. Gruver and Mr. Gurney lived for two years engaged in 
general farming and making many \aluable improvements. The farm 



126 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

was profitable and Mr. Gruver was soon able to purchase eighty 
acres directly north of his first tract of land. He lived in the small 
house which he built upon the new land about three years and then 
sold his entire holdings. Forty acres were purchased by outsiders 
and the other forty became the property of ^Ir. Gurney. Perry 
Gru\er then mo\'ed back to the little house, which he had built when 
he came to Webster county and remained there for one year. His 
success at this time was not remarkable and he soon gave up the 
land w'hich he was operating and the year following removed 
to Emmetsburg, Palo Alto county, Iowa. Here he remained for 
six years following agricultural pursuits and meeting with a little 
more success than had attended his early efforts. When he was 
financially able he came back to Roland township and purchased 
eighty acres on section 29, which he improved and operated for 
ten years, gradually bringing it to a high state of productivity. 
Eventually he traded this to Mr. Gurney and received in ex- 
change his present farm located on section 35. At the time this 
transaction was completed there was on the land which ]\Ir. 
Gruver received a small house. This he entirely remodeled, 
installed modern and sanitary equipment and he now makes it 
his home. During the past few years Mr. Gruver has added ma- 
terially to his holdings and his success has been rapid. He 
bought out the holdings of the heirs of his former partner, Gus 
A. Gurney, and is now the proprietor of one hundred and twenty- 
four acres of the most fertile land in Roland township. He is 
constantly improving his farm and has erected new buildings and 
outhouses as well as sheds and fences. He carries on agriculture 
along modern and progressive lines and is kecnlv interested in 
every new development in farm machinerv. 

In 1862 Mr. Gruver was united in marriage to Miss Emma P. 
Gurney. She was born in Saxony, Germany, and is a daughter 
of Godfried and Hannah Rosetta (Wingler) Gurney, both natives 
of Germany who came to Mason county, Wisconsin about the 
year 1845. Seven years later they removed to Clinton county, 
Iowa, where they lived until the father's death. His wife then 
removed to Greene county where she died. They were the par- 
ents of ten children: Emily, who is deceased; Fred, wdio came to 
his death by starvation during his service in the Civil war; 
Charles, Agnes, Minnie, Anna and Henry, all of whom have 
passed away; one child, who died in infancy; Emma P.. the wife 
of the subject of this sketch ; and G. A., deceased. Mrs. Gruver 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 127 

has al\va3-s been a worthy helpmeet of her husband in his strug- 
gles toward success. Their married life has been completely happy 
and they have gained many friends in this section of the country. 
They w ere the parents of eight children : Anna, Mary and Haley, de- 
ceased ; Hannah Rosetta, who is married to J. H. Wood of Gowrie, 
Iowa, and has live children, Amy, Perry, Jim, Charles and George; 
Marion, working in the coal mines in Des Moines ; G. A., who 
resides in Havelock and married Miss Lottie Johnson, by whom 
he had two children. Pearl and Ray; Henry, who lives in P'ort 
Dodge, Iowa, with his wife, who was Miss Libbie Lilly, and his 
son Charles Perry; and Isaac, who married Miss Lola Lizer, by 
whom he has one daughter, Doris, and lives on the home farm. 

Mr. Gruver gives his political allegiance to the republican 
party but beyond casting his vote each election day takes no 
active part in public affairs. He has always been a loyal citizen 
and endeavored to serve his country in the Civil war but was 
refused on account of disability. He has always done his duty 
in the various relations of life and is a devout member of the 
Christian church. He is one of the oldest settlers in this part 
of the country and his life has been an active factor in its up- 
building. He has made a valiant struggle against constantly 
dominating obstacles and has well earned the prosperity which 
he enjoys and the esteem and respect of his fellowmen. 



OTTO G. YANT. 



Otto G. Yant has been cashier of the X'incent Savings liank 
since April, 191 1, and is also doing able and intelligent work as 
general manager of the Vincent Telephone Company, operating 
exchanges here and in Thor, Iowa. He is a practical business 
man with the power to make his ability effective and has brought 
the two enterprises with which he is connected to a gratifying 
degree of success. He has been a resident of Iowa all his life, his 
birth having occurred in Polk county, on April 25. 1885. He is 
a son of William and Emma (Biddle) Yant, natives of that sec- 
tion. His father was reared and educated in Polk county and 
after he grew to maturity he engaged in general fanning until 
he was thirty years of age. At that time he learned photography 
and followed that line of occupation until his health failed, when 



128 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

he went to Calhoun county, where he owned a farm of one hun- 
dred and sixty acres. Upon this he settled, made various im- 
provements and did general farming until 1900, going- in that year 
to Rockwell City, where he again established himself as a photog- 
rapher and where he is still carrying on a successful business. 
The mother of our subject is also livmg. 

Otto Yant completed an education begun at Mitchelville, Polk 
county, in the public schools of Calhoun county and at the Rock- 
well City high school. After laying aside his books he learned 
the barber's trade working at that occupation for two years. His 
banking career began in 1906, when he entered the First National 
Bank of Rockwell City as bookkeeper. He did able and thorough 
work in this capacity and retained his identification with the 
institution until July, 1910, when he entered the employ of the 
First National Bank of Fort Dodge as utility man. This position 
he held for some time but was subsequently sent to Emmetsburg 
as assistant cashier in a bank of that city. After two months he 
came to Vincent, where he was appointed cashier of the Vincent 
Savings Bank, entering upon his duties in April, 191 1, and being 
still active. The institution with which he is identified is one of 
the leading banks in Newark township. It has a capital of fifteen 
thousand dollars and its officers are among the most able business 
men of the section. The president is .\lbert Rossow, while Paul 
HufYman of Eagle Gro\e, Iowa, holds the position of vice presi- 
dent. Mr. Yant is a successful banker because he has had personal 
experience in various aspects of that occupation and because he 
is conservative and systematic as a financier. He is valuable to 
the Vincent Savings Bank by reason of his industry, practical 
methods and intelligent skill, which have made him successful 
and have been factors in the growth and development of the 
enterprise with which he is connected. He is also general man- 
ager of the Vincent Telephone Company, which operates ex- 
changes here and at Thor. Iowa, and is a stockholder and director 
in the enterprise. 

In April, 1912, :\Ir. Yant was united in marriage to Miss Eliza- 
beth A. Clark, a daughter of E. W. and Mattie Clark, natives of 
Illinois. He is prominent in fraternal circles, holding member- 
ship in Twin Lakes Lodge, No. 478, A. F. & A. M., of Rockwell 
City, Iowa. He is also prominent in the affairs of Silver Lake 
Chapter No. 312, Order of the Eastern Star. He is a member 
of the Church of Christ, while his wife gives her allegiance to the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 129 

JNlethodist religion. He is a republican in his political beliefs 
but has never sought prominence in a public capacity. In busi- 
ness affairs he has proven capable and reliable and his industrv 
and well directed activity are Ijringing him a gratifxing measure 
of prosperity. 



CARROLL D. PARSONS, M. D., D. D. S, 

Dr. Carroll D. Parsons of \'incent, Iowa, combinetl the prac- 
tice of medicine and dentistry and since 1909 has been a resident 
of this city and has gained a gratifying degree of success in 
both professions. His career as a dentist began in 1900 and to 
his activities in this line he added the general practice of med- 
icine in 1908. He is able and thoroughly trained, his prosperity 
being the natural result of his energy and efficiency. He is well 
known in various sections of Iowa, having been a resident of the 
state since his birth, which occurred in Waterloo, Blackhawk 
county, in November, 1879. He is a son of Roscoe and Ellen 
(Spaulding) Parsons, the former a native of Vermont and the 
latter of New Jersey. His father came to Iowa when he was 
still a child and with his parents, settled in this state, where he 
was reared and educated. The family located in ^\'aterloo before 
the Civil war and later the father entered a Chicago medical 
school, receiving his degree of AI. D. He located in Traer, Iowa, 
and here practiced his profession until his death which occurred 
in March, 1903. His wife survives him. 

Dr. Parsons was only three years of age when his parents 
moved to Traer. He attended the public schools of that com- 
munity and in 1897 entered the State University at Iowa City, 
graduating in dentistry with the class of 1900. He located im- 
mediately in Lake City, Iowa. Here he was successful until 
November, 1904, when he removed to Alden, where he practiced 
one year. At the end of that time he went to Iowa City, entered 
the medical department of the State University and after one 
year's study came to Chicago, graduating in 1908 from the Hahne- 
mann Medical College of that city. In the same year he went to 
Oelwein and practiced dentistry and general medicine for one 
year in that city before he came to Vincent, where he has 
since resided. He is progressive, modern and up-to-date in every 



130 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

phase of his practice, keeping constantly in touch with every new 
development in medical research, investigation and experiment. 
His knowledge is constantly broadening and his practice increas- 
ing as his ability becomes more widely known. 

On May i6, 191 1, Dr. Parsons was united in marriage to Miss 
May McElroy, a daughter of Harry, and Elizabeth (Redding) 
McElroy, the former a native of Chicago and the latter of Minne- 
sota. The father was a railroad man and was killed in an acci- 
dent in his native city in 1895. His wife survived him by one 
year. 

In politics Dr. Parsons is a consistent republican and votes the 
party ticket, although his professional duties prevent him from 
taking active part in public affairs. He is a member of the 
Fayette County Medical Society and is prominent in the affairs of 
the Order of Elks and the Order of Moose, holding membership 
also in the Knights of Pythias. His wife is a devout adherent of 
the Roman Catholic church. He is one of the successful general 
practitioners and dentists in Vincent. The zeal with which he 
has devoted his energies to his profession and the careful regard 
which he manifests for the interests of his patients have brought 
him a large practice and made him very successful in its conduct. 



FRANCIS B. DRAKE. 



Francis B. Drake is living in a pleasant and comfortable home 
in Otho, to which he removed about twelve years ago, when he 
definitely abandoned agricultural pursuits after a period of almost 
fifty years' successful identification with farming. He is num- 
bered among the early settlers, in Iowa and his activities have 
been connected with an important period of development and 
have gained him recognition as a man of resourceful ability and 
well directed energy. He was born in St. Lawrence county, New 
York, July 27. 1832, a son of David B. and Caroline (Wilson) 
Drake, the former a native of Vermont and the latter of New 
Hampshire. The father came to New York about the year 
1828 and there engaged in farming, cultivating and developing 
a tract of timber land and obtaining his water supply from a plant 
which he erected upon his property. Later he became interested 
in a woolen factory but abandoned this line of occupation in 



-u 






HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 133 

order to resume his agricultural pursuits. He cleared and im- 
proved a large farm in St. Lawrence county and operated this 
until his death, which occurred in 1869. He had survived his 
wife since 1864. 

Francis B. Drake received his education in the public schools 
and St. Lawrence Academy of New York state, and made use 
of every opportunity in this line, fitting himself for teaching, 
which occupation he followed for a numlier of years. In 1854 
he came west, settling in Webster county, where he entered a 
claim for one hundred and sixty acres of land in Otho township, 
paying for this property a dollar and a quarter per acre. Shortly 
afterward he sold his first farm and bought one hundred and 
twenty acres in the same township, which he developed and 
improved for ten years. \\'hen he sold this tract of land he 
bought another farm in Clay township, which he operated until 
1900, when he disposed of his property and moved to Otho, wdiere 
he erected a fine modern home, in which he has since resided. 
He is living practically retired but is dealing to some extent in 
Nebraska real estate. 

On April 16, 1857, i\Ir. Drake was united in marriage to Miss 
Caroline E. Hart, a daughter of Norman and Marcia (Hale) 
Harf, natives of Connecticut. The father came to Adams county. 
Illinois, in 1834 but remained only a short time. Removing to 
Kane county, he took up a tract of fine farming land and operated 
and improved this until 1854, when he disposed of his property 
and came to Webster county. Here he took up eighty acres in 
Otho township and each member of his family also entered land 
claims. L'pon their combined holdings Norman Hart carried on 
general agriculture, improving his property and developing and 
operating it along the most systematic, progressive and modern 
lines until his death, which occurred March 30. 1880. He was 
one of the earliest pioneers in Iowa, coming to this section when 
there was not a railroad within the state limits and none beyond 
the boundaries of central Illinois. He was a splendid type of 
the early settler, hard-working, energetic and intelligent, and 
was perhaps one of the greatest individual forces in the upbuild- 
ing and growth of Webster county. Flis wife passed away in 
February, 1875. y]v. and Mrs. Drake have three adopted chil- 
dren, all of whom are married. 

Mr. Drake gives his allegiance to the republican party and 
has always been active and pronu'ncnt in local affairs, holding 



134 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

various important public offices and serving faithfully, ably and 
conscientiously in the interests of his fellow citizens. He was 
county surveyor and county supervisor for a number of years 
and also did effective work as road super\'isor. Among his tJther 
offices may be mentioned those of township c'erk, assessor and 
trustee, in all of which capacities he served efficiently and always 
with a view to the best interests of his constituents. During the 
Civil war he served as postmaster of Otho, Ijcing the first post- 
master of the village. At the present time lie is justice of the 
peace and is bringing to the discharge of the duties of this office 
the same unquestioned integrity, well directed energy and ex- 
perienced discrimination which have marked the entire course of 
his pul)lic life. He and his wife belong to the Congregational 
church. For almost half a century he has lived in Iowa and has 
promoted the growth of its most important resource — agricul- 
ture. He has witnessed the progress and evolution which ha\e 
come in fifty years of modern activity and to a great e.xtent has 
been identified with the change, working ably and intelligently 
in his active years and earning his retirement 1)y energ\- and 
diligence. 



MAUDE LAUDERDALE. 

While Iowa as a state has never accorded to woman the right 
of franchise, various districts have acknowledged her capability 
for service in public office and have called her to positions of 
trust and responsibility. Such is the case in Webster county, 
where Miss Maude Lauderdale of Fort Dodge is serving as 
county recorder. Her birthplace was Sunnyside Farm in I'.uch- 
anan county. Iowa, her parents being Edwin I. and Sadie [•" 
(Marshall) Lauderdale, natives of Ohio and Brooklyn. Xew York, 
respectively. The Lauderdale family is of Scotch origin, while 
the Marshalls were English and the Luthers of German descent. 
The paternal grandfather, George H. Lauderdale, also a native 
of Ohio, wedded ]\Iary Pocock and followed the occupation of 
farming. EventuaHy he and his wife remo\ed to Iowa, settling 
in Buchanan county, where he carried on general agricultural 
pursuits for a considerable period, until his i-em(i\al li> indeiicnil- 
ence, where lie and liis wife spent their remaining days. He 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COL'XTV 135 

passed away at the age of eighty-nine and his wife when eighty- 
four years of age. They were the parents of three sons: Edwin 
I.; John W. ; and Frank, who was killed in the Civil war. The 
maternal grandparents of Miss Lauderdale were Robert and Mary 
Catharine (Luther) Marshall, the latter a direct descendant of 
Martin Luther. The former was born in Brooklyn, New York, 
and there engaged in the manufacture of rope, but after his 
removal to Iowa, in i860, he purchased two farms — one in 
Grundy county, which he bought for his two eldest sons, and 
one in Humboldt county, upon which he took up his abotle. cul- 
tivating and improving it until his death, which occurred on June 
26, 1875, when he was well advanced in years. His wife sur- 
vived him an<l died October 7, 1899, in Fort Dodge at the age 
of eighty-nine years. They were the parents of thirteen chil- 
dren, of whom the following reached years of maturity, namely: 
Kate, who gave her hand in marriage to John Frazier; Thomas 
A.; Robert; Mary Grace, who wedded Thomas Cummings : Sadie 
F., wife of Edwin L Lauderdale: John L. : Annie R., the wife of 
James B. Williams: William K.; Cornelia C, the wife of C. P. 
Byam ; and JNLirgaret Antoinette. 

Edwin L Lauderdale was reared in Ohio and became a prac- 
ticing dentist. Removing westward during the pioneer epoch 
in the historv of Iowa, he became one of the incorporators of 
Fort Dodge, where he practiced his profession in connection 
with Dr. V. G. .Slate. He served his country as a soldier in the 
Civil war. enlisting in an Ohio ca\'alr\- regiment. His wife. Sadie 
F. Lauderdale was bctrn and reared in I'.rodklyn, Xew \'ork. came 
to Fort Dodge in i860 and is still residing here. They had but 
two children, the elder being George H., now a resident of Chi- 
cago. Miss Lauderdale is related to several of the prominent 
old families of Webster county, including James B. Williams, now 
deceased, who was the son of William \\ iiliams. the founder of 
Fort Dodge. Her uncle, Dr. jdlni 1.. Marshall, also deceased, 
was a leading dentist of the city. Ik- came here when a young 
boy, was reared to manhond in this county and practiced den- 
tistry here for manv years, until his death which occurred on 
June 23, 1890. He married Luclla Wallace, a niece of Judge W. 
N. Meservey, one of the old settlers and early judges here and 
the father of the Hon. S. T. Meservey of Chicago. 

Maude Lauderdale was reared in Fort Dodge from the age of 
eight years, attended the public schools and, passing through 



' 136 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

consecutive grades, was in due time graduated from the high 
school. The first money she ever earned was as committee clerk 
in the Iowa house of representatives and later she became as- 
sistant postmistress of Fort Dodge under C. F. Duncombe, filling 
that position for three years. She then took up the profession of 
bookkeeping, which she followed for several years, and in 1902 
she became connected with the abstract business as a partner of 
her uncle. James B. Williams, under the firm name of the Webster 
County Abstract Company. The uncle died in 1903 but Miss 
Lauderdale still continues the business successfully. In 1910 she 
was elected recorder of Webster county for the years 191 1 and 
1912 as the candidate of the democratic party and is now accept- 
ably filling that position. She has had broad and varied business 
experience, recognizes the value of carefully systematized inter- 
ests and of methodical effort and as the incumbent in the office of 
county recorder is making a most excellent record. She holds 
membership with the Episcopal church and is highly esteemed 
in social circles. 



JOHX W. HAGANS. 



John W. Hagans is one of the progressive, substantial and en- 
terprising citizens of Barnum, where he is living retired after 
forty-four years' identification with business and agricultural 
interests in Iowa. His residence in Webster county dates from 
1879 ^"'' since that time his activities have been connected with 
important industries in this section. He was born in Orange 
county. New York, on January 5. 1838, and is a son of Wesley and 
Ellen (Brown) Hagans. the former a native of Philadelphia and 
the latter of New York. His father was a practicing physician 
and left his native city in 1857 in order to locate in Goshen, In- 
diana, where he followed his profession for the remainder of his 
life. He died in 1866. His wife passed away in Barnum. in 
1907. 

Mr. Hagans remained in New York until he was nineteen 
years of age and completed his education begun in the public 
schools of that city in Indiana, where he removed with his father 
m 18^7. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1862. lo- 
catin"- for ]iractice in Goshen, where he entered into partnership 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER^ COUNTY 137 

with Mr. Dickinson, under the tirni name of Dickinson & Hagans. 
He was successful as a lawyer until iS66, when he abandoned 
this field in order to establish himself in the photograph business 
at Goshen, in which he continued for one year. In 1867 he pur- 
chased a shoe store, which he conducted until he came to Iowa 
in 1868. In this state he located in Clinton county, where he was 
employed along mechanical lines until 1879. He had an instinct 
for this work and was successful at it. He then came to Webster 
county purchasing one hundred and sixty acres on sections 30 
and 31, Johnson township, to which he later added eighty adjoin- 
ing acres. He set about the improvement of this property along 
progressive and modern lines and gained prosperity as general 
agriculturist during the short period in which he followed farm- 
ing, subsequent to which he returned to Clinton, where for eight- 
een months he worked at different occupations, coming back at 
the end of that time to his farm in Webster county, which he 
cultivated until 1902. In that year he retired from agricultural 
life and moved to Barnum, where he has since resided. 

On January 18, 1866, Mr. Hagans was united in marriage to 
Miss Mary A. Gillett, a daughter of Thomas J. and Mary Gillett, 
natives of New York. Mr. and Mrs. Hagans were the parents of 
six children: Francis J., who passed away in 1868; Frances May, 
who is forty-three years old and the wife of Howard Moore of 
Missouri; Charles W., who died in infancy; Charles G., who re- 
sides in Omaha. Nebraska: Nellie: and one child, who died in 
infancy. Mrs. Hagans died on July 12. 1898. 

Mr. Hagans is now active in the insurance business in this 
city and has varied interests, all of which are forces in local 
growth and expansion. He is a stockholder in the Farmers 
Elevator Company and is vice president of the Farmers Grain 
Dealers' Association of Iowa. He also acts as president of the 
Barnum Telephone Company and was the organizer of this 
corporation and of the local elevator company. He has an inborn 
faculty for invention and is adding to lii> income by the sale of 
the Hagans' fence post, which is fully protected by United 
.States and Canadian patents. It has many advantages over the 
common forms now in use. being cheap, simple, strong and very 
lasting. It is handled by the .\merican Patent & Promoting 
Company of Detroit, Michigan. 

In his political views Mr. Hagans is a consistent democrat and 
served as president of the Johnsf)n township school board for 



138 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

twenty years. His name is always prominent in any movement 
looking toward the further development and improvement of 
the section in which he resides and his life has been a great 
individual force in its progress. He is a member of the Alasonic 
lodge, having been identified with this order since 1861. He is 
a Methodist in his religious views and a man of exemplary life. 
He has all the adaptability and the force of personality which 
distinguish, men who have been acti\e in various representative 
enterprises. He is straightforward, upright, energetic and hon- 
orable, and possesses those characteristics which are the essential 
qualities of public spirit. 



CHARLES HENRY ALLSTOT. 

Charles Henry Allstot was born July 7, 1868, in Dubuqu^ 
county, Iowa, and received his early education in the public 
schools in Greene county, that state. After completing his 
education he removed to Webster county, Iowa, in 1885 and in 
partnership with his brother, James Allstot, was engaged in 
farming for four j'ears. At the end of that time he established 
himself in farming on his father-in-law's farm, where he remained 
for nine years. He then purchased a farm of forty acres from 
Jesse Miles. There he established his home and has since con- 
tinued to devote his attention to general farming and stock- 
raising. 

Mr. Allstot was united in marriage, March 2. 1890, to Miss 
Clarinda Black, a native of Lehigh, Iowa, and a daughter of 
James Monroe and Mary Jane (Fye) Black. The father was 
born in the southeastern part of Iowa and celebrated his marriage 
in Webster county. He and his wife were the ])arents of four 
children: Cora Arva ; Edward; Clarinda, now Mrs. Allstot: and 
John, who married Nettie Rufer, by whom he has one child. Rufer 
M. Black. The father of this family died in Burnside township 
at the age of fifty-five and the mother was fifty years of age when 
she passed away. Both are buried in Otho cemetery. The father 
was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church and the mother 
of the United Brethren church. Mr. Black for twelve years 
previous to his death had been one of the trustees of Burnside 
township and lived at the time of his death a retired life on his 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 139 

farm of two hundred acres in \\'ebster county, which has since 
passed through the probate courts and each of his surviving heirs 
have received their portion of the property, fifty acres of which 
was the share of the old homestead deeded to Mrs. Allstot. To 
Mr. and Mrs. Allstot three children have been born: Roy, who 
died in infancy; and Archie Ray and Clyde Bertsel. both at home. 
Mr. Allstot is known to be one of the enterprising farmers of his 
locality and is numbered among the progressive, useful citizens 
of his part of the state. Of late he has purchased a fine farm jirop- 
ertv near Windholm. ■Minnesota. 



A. L. BESHEY. 



A. L. Beshey, mayor of Tara, Iowa, in the eighteenth consecutive 
year of his service, well known as a general merchant and hotel pro- 
prietor and active in local democratic politics, was born in France, 
July 5, 1852, and is a .'^on of Joseph and Mary (^ Phillips) Beshey, 
natives of that country. The father was a farmer and operated a 
small tract of land in France. He came to .America in 1858 and settled 
near Portsmouth, C)hio. Here he purchased timber Iau<l and cleared 
and improved his eighty acres, operating the property successfully 
for eighteen years. At the end of that time he sold out and went to 
Illinois, where he fanned upon rented land until his death. His 
wife passed away in September. 1888. 

Mr. Beshey was reared at home and completed an education begun in 
the public schools of Ohio in Lee Center College at Lee Center, Illinois. 
When he laid aside his books he worked out as a farm hand until he 
acquired enough money to join his brother in the i)urchase of a 
threshing outfit, which they were successful in oi)erating for five 
years. At the end of that time Mr. Beshey came to Iowa, where he 
engaged in the mercantile business at Walcott. This enterprise he 
operated for about four years, disposing of his holdings eventually 
in order to go to Clark county, Kansas, where he preempted a quarter 
section of land, proved up his title and purchased it for one dollar and 
a cpiarter an acre. Later he bought one hundred and sixty acres of 
timber land, to which he added another tract of school land of similar 
size. He improved this pn(|)erty and operated it for si.\ years, at the 
same time engaging as a hardware and farm implement merchant. 
He was successful in both lines of occupation but finally dispo.sed of 



140 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

his interests in Kansas and moved to Missouri, where he bought two 
hundred and fifteen acres in Polk county. Upon this he carried on 
general agricultural pursuits for six years, coming to Webster county, 
Iowa, at the end of that time. He located immediately in Tara, six 
miles west of Fort Dodge, bought village property and established 
himself in the mercantile business, which he has conducted since that 
time. In 1909 he purchased a business building and six town lots 
and opened a hotel, with which he is at present connected. He has 
been successful in both lines of occupation, having founded his pros- 
perity on industry, straightforward business methods and unquestioned 
honesty. 

On January i, 1886, Mr. Beshey was united in marriage to Miss 
Percilla Miller, a daughter of Ralph and Elizabeth Miller, the former 
a native of England and the latter of Pennsylvania. Mr. and Mrs. 
Beshey became the parents of seven children. Those living are 
Elmer, Ivy, Celia M., Alice, Louis and Edna. 

Mr. Beshey is well known and favorably regarded in democratic 
political circles. He is at present mayor of Tara and has served in 
this capacity for the past eighteen years. He was for a long time 
school director of his township and did able work as justice of the 
peace, which office he is now holding. He was appointed postmaster 
but refused the office, with the result that there is no postoffice in the 
village. He belongs to the Roman Catholic church. There is hardly 
a line of legitimate activity in which he is not interested and active. 
His business affairs are thriving and ably conducted, his political 
record is clean and free from any suspicion of corruption, and his 
labors along both lines have been constantly constructive and his life 
has been worthy and honorable because it has been useful and 
valuable. 



WILLIAM LINGARD. 



^V'illiam Lingard, who is engaged in business in association 
with his brother, George E., conducts a meat market and grocery 
at Kalo and also operates a similar enterprise at Otho, both es- 
tablishments having a large patronage. His birth occurred in 
Lincolnshire, England, on the 7th of April, 1852, his parents being 
Edward and Esther (Smith) Lingard, who were also natives of 
that country. The father, a mason by trade, brought his familv 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 141 

lo America in 1853, locating in Canada, where he remained for 
two years. On the expiration of that period he came to Iowa, 
locating first in Dewitt, Clinton county, and later in Boone, where 
he w'orked as a coal miner and resided until 1882. In that year 
he came to Webster county, settling at Kalo, where he engaged 
in coal mining and made his home throughout the remainder 
of his life. In 1862, in the defense of the Union, he enlisted in 
Company A, Twenty-sixth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, with which 
command he remained until the cessation of hostilities. His 
demise occurred in May, 1904. while his wife was called to her 
final rest on the 30th of November, 1908. 

William Lingard. who was brought to America by his parents 
when but one year old, acquired his education at Dewitt. Clin- 
ton county, this state. After putting aside his text-books he 
began mining coal at Boone, being thus employed for some time. 
At the age of nineteen years, however, he went to Nebraska, took 
up a homestead and resided thereon for six years. It was in 
1882 that he came to Kalo, Webster county, locating here in the 
same year that his father took up his abode in this county. He 
again turned his attention to coal miaing and was thus employed 
until forty years of age. In 1892, in partnership with liis brother, 
George E., he opened a meat market at Kalo, to which he later 
added a grocery department and which he has conducted con- 
tinuously since with gratifying success. The brothers also con- 
duct a meat market and grocery store at Otho and have built up 
an extensive trade in both places, having won an enviable repu- 
tation by reason of their straightforward and honorable business 
dealings. They do an annual business amounting to over twenty- 
three thousand dollars. William Lingard and his brother own a 
well improved farm near Kalo and have an attractive home in 
that town. 

On the 25th of April, 1878, Mr. Lingard was united in marriage 
to Miss Marion Stewart, a daughter of Louis and Jane Stewart, 
both natives of Scotland. Our subject and his wife have three 
children, namely: William, who is thirty-two years of age and 
assists his father in the conduct of his business; Matilda J., the 
wife of Adam Krouse, a miner and farmer; and inorence, who is 
fifteen years of age and is under the parental roof. Mr. and Mrs. 
Lingard reared a boy named Gus Anderson, who passed away in 
1899 at the age of eighteen years. 



142 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

William Lingard is a republican and has served as trustee of 
Otho township for six years. He belongs to the local organiza- 
tion of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and is also a 
valued member of the Congregational church. He has many 
friends in the community where he resides, and his excellent 
traits of character have gained for him the respect and regard 
of his fellowmen. 



LOUIS O. MYRLAXD. 

Louis O. Alyrland, a blacksmith and rural mail carrier in 
Badger, Iowa, was born in Dane county, Wisconsin, in December, 
1872, and is a son of O. P. and Emily P. (Simondson) Myrland, 
natives of Norway. The father came to this country with his 
parents in the early '50s, the family locating in Wisconsin, where 
O. P. Myrland grew to maturity. He followed farming for a 
number of years, renting a tract of land in Dane county, which 
he hnally purchased and improved, operating it until 1888. In 
1892 he moved to Jackson, Minnesota, where he and his wife have 
since resided. 

Louis O. Myrland was reared and educated in Wisconsin and 
in that state he began learning the blacksmith's trade. At the 
end of two years he came to Badger, where he completed his 
apprenticeship. He worked at this occupation for a year and a 
half, at the end of which time he was able to purchase a shop of 
his own, which he has since operated. His business is rapidly 
increasing, prosperity having come to him because he labored 
diligently to attain it. He has applied his energies successfully 
to the promotion of his enterprise and has won success bv the 
sure method of hard and continued work. In February, 1906, 
he was appointed rural mail carrier of Badger township and 
has continued in the service since that time. He owns his busi- 
ness property and a comfortable and pleasant home in the city 
in which he resides and is interested in its future growth and 
welfare. He is a stockholder in the Badger Telephone Company, 
seeking to do his utmost to encourage local enterprises. 

In June, 1900, Mr. Myrland was united in marriage to Miss 
Belle Lee, a daughter of Helge and .-\nna Lee. natives of Norwav. 
The father was an early settler in Wisconsin, where he followed 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 143 

farming until the outbreak of the Civil war. He was drafted in 
the Federal army and served for some time, returning to Wis- 
consin after his discharge. Here he resumed agricultural pur- 
suits, operating his farm until 1877, when lie came to Iowa, 
settling in Hancock county, where he purchased a fine tract of 
land, which he brought to a high state of development before his 
death, which occurred in 1896. His wife is still living and makes 
her home in Britt, Iowa. Mr. and Airs. Mvrland ])ecame the 
parents of two children: Marvyl, who is nine years of age; and 
Fern Anniveve, who died in .Vprij, igog, when she was three 
months old. 

Mr. Mvrland is a member of the Lutiieran church of Ikidger 
and belongs to the Modern Woodmen of .\merica. He is well 
known in local republican politics and has served continuously 
for ten or twelve years as member of the town council. He 
never seeks to evade the obligations of citizenship and is influ- 
enced in his public activities l)y an interest in the growth and 
prosperity of his section. His standards both in business and 
in politics are modern and progressive and his energies, well 
applied and directed, have brought him a gratifying measure of 
success. 



THOMAS H. DAWSON. 

Thomas H. Dawson is successfully engaged in business as a 
member of the Craig & Dawson Coal Company, with offices at 
No. 4 North Seventh street in Fort Dodge. A native of Webster 
county, he has spent his entire life within its borders and now 
makes his home at No. 1302 Fifth avenue. South, in Fort Dodge. 
His birth occurred on the 3d of February, 1877, his parents being 
Jerry and Mary Jane (Wonders) Dawson, the former a native of 
England. His paternal grandfather, Robert Dawson, was also 
born in England and devoted the greater part of his life to general 
agricultural pursuits. His demise occurred at Kalo, this stale. 
To him, and his wife who bore the maiden name of Alma Peart, 
were born twelve children, six of whom grew to maturity, as 
follows: Joshua: Jerry: Nellie, the deceased wife of David Wil- 
liams; Mary, the deceased wife of Tabor Moore; William, who is 
a resident of Otho, Iowa: and Elizabeth, who gave her hand in 



144 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

marriage to Orville Brown and resides in Calhoun county, Iowa. 
The maternal grandparents of our subject, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas 
Wonders, became early settlers of this county and here passed 
away when about seventy years of age. They had three sons and 
tour daughters, Mary Jane, Margaret, Thomas, Martha, John 
William, Elizabeth and Joseph. 

Jerry Dawson, the father of Thomas H. Dawson, was nine 
years of age when he accompanied his parents on their emigration 
to the United States, the family home being first established in 
Coshocton, Ohio, and later at Moingona, Iowa. Subsequently the 
family spent four or five years in Manson, this state, and then 
removed to Kalo, where both Mr. and Mrs. Robert Dawson passed 
away wlien well advanced in years. Jerry Dawson removed from 
Manson to Coalville and thence to Kalo, where he became a coal 
mine operator. During the period of the Civil war he enlisted 
for one hundred days' service as a private, becoming a member of 
Company G, One hundred and Forty-third Ohio National Guard. 
He was a stanch republican but never sought nor desired public 
ofiiice as a reward for his party fealty. Fraternally, he was identi- 
fied with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He passed 
away at Kalo in 1907, when sixty-three years of age, and the 
community lost one of its most substantial and esteemed citizens. 
His widow, now si.xty-four years of age, lives at Otho and is a 
Methodist in religious faith. To Mr. anr] Mrs. Jerry Dawson 
were born five children, namely: Elizabeth, the wife of William 
Schnurr, of Otho, Iowa; Thomas H.. of this review: Emerson 
W., deceased; Alma, the wife of Alexander Reid, of Otho; and 
Mary Ellen, living in Otho. 

Thomas H. Dawson, whose name introduces this review, was 
reared to manhood in Webster county and obtained his early edu- 
cation in the country schools, while later he attended the ])ublic 
schools of Kalo. Subsequently he continued his studies in the 
Fort Dodge high school and also in Tobin College. Since putting 
aside his text-books he has been continuously identified with the 
coal business operating in Fort Dodge, Iowa, and also in Higbee, 
Missouri. He recently disposed of his interests in the latter 
place and now- devotes his entire attention to the conduct of the 
Craig & Dawson Coal Company of Fort Dodge. His efforts have 
been attended with success and he has long enjoyed an enviable 
reputation as one of the representative and prosperous business 
men of the city. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 145 

On the 1st of January, 1900, Mr. Dawson was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Ursula Griggs, a native of Mexico, Missouri, and 
a daughter of Benjamin and Mary Jane (Morris) Griggs. Her 
father, wlio participated in the Civil war as a Confederate soldier, 
passed away at Higbee, Missouri, but the mother survives and' 
makes her home in Denver, Colorado. She has five living chil- 
dren, Commodore Griggs. Sonora, Ursula, Henry B. and Data. 
Mr. and Mrs. Dawson have one son. Emerson Blanton. The 
mother is a devoted member of the Episcopal church. Fra- 
ternally. Thomas H. Dawson is known as a Master Alason. His 
political allegiance is given the republican party. His entire 
life has been passed in this county and he has attained a creditable 
position in business circles, while his sincere cordiality has won 
him the friendship of many. 



GEORGE E. LINGARD. 

George E. Lingard is well known in business circles of Webster 
county as the proprietor of meat markets and grocery stores at 
Kalo and Otho, which establishments he conducts in partner- 
ship with his brother, William Lingard. He was born in Dewitt, 
Clinton county, Iowa, on the 2d of October, 1866, his parents be- 
ing Edward and Esther (Smith) Lingard, more extended men- 
tion of whom is made on another jjage of this work in connection 
with the sketch of William Lingard. 

George E. Lingard obtainetl his early education in Boone 
county, Iowa, and later continued his studies in Nebraska. In 
1882 the family home was established at Kalo, Webster county, 
this state. George E. Lingard sul)se(|uently made his way to the 
Pacific coast and later took up his abode in Colorado, w here he 
spent about eight months at farming and railroading. .After 
returning home he was engaged for some time in digging coal 
and then went into the meat business in association with Charles 
Wilson at Kalo. A short time afterward he was married and 
removed to the state of Washington, where he was engaged in coal 
mining for about one year. On the e.\i)iration of that period he 
returned to Kalo and embarked in the butcher and grocery !)usi- 
ness, in association with his I)rotiier William, in partncrshij) with 
whom he has since conducted est.iblishpu'nts of that character at 



146 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

both Kalo and Otlio. They do an annual business amounting to 
over twenty-three thousand dollars and own their store build- 
ings at both Kalo and Otho. The brothers have residence prop- 
erty in Fort Dodge, and our subject ow'ns an attractive home in 
Kalo and he and his brother are stockholders in the Farmers Ele- 
vator Company of that place. 

On the 24th of January, 1889, Mr. Lingard was joined in wed- 
lock to Miss Martha Nelson, a daughter of Moi¥it and Margaret 
(Johnson) Nelson, both of whom are natives of Scotland. The 
father emigrated to the United States at an early date, first locat- 
ing in Kentucky and later coming to Kalo. A\'ebster county, Iowa, 
where both he and his wife still reside. Mr. Nelson was engaged 
in mining during his acti\e business career. To Mr. and -Mrs. 
Lingard have been born four children, Harley, Myrtle, Merritt 
and one who died in infancy. 

At the polls George E. Lingard supports the men and meas- 
ures of the republican party. He has served as school director 
and has also acted in the capacity of constable. His fraternal 
relations are with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the 
Ancient Order of United Workmen, the Foresters, the Eagles and 
the Knights of Pythias, while his religious faith is indicated by 
his membership in the Congregational church. He has gained the 
esteem of all with whom he has come into contact because of his 
upright and honorable principles and also by reason of the 
straightforward methods he e\er follows. 



PETER MALLINGER. 



Agricultural pursuits always engaged the attention of Peter 
Mallinger until 1907, when he removed to Duncombe, identify- 
ing himself with its connnercial activities. In the development of 
his various business interests he has manifested as marked effi- 
ciency and capability as he evidenced in his farming pursuits, 
and he is regarded as one of the foremost business men of the 
town. He is a son of John and Mary (Barnech) Mallinger, na- 
tives of Germany, and was born in Fort Washington. Wisconsin, 
in October, 1866. John Mallinger was only eighteen months of 
age when brought to the United States by his parents, who 
located in Wisconsin. There he was reared and educated, sub- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 147 

sequently turning his attention to agricultural pursuits. For sev- 
eral years he owned and operated a farm in Wisconsin, but in 
1875 he sold it and coming to A\'ebster county invested the pro- 
ceeds in a place in Colfax townsliip. Here he continued farming 
with such success that he became one of the extensive property 
holders of his community, owning at one time five hundred acres 
of land. He devoted himself to the further improvement and 
cultivation of his place until 1904, when he withdrew from active 
work and remo\-ed to Dunconilie. Here he is now li\ing retired 
at the age of seventy years, while the mother is sixty-six. 

As he was a lad of nine years when he accompanied his parents 
on their removal to Iowa, the education of Peter Mallinger was 
begun in the common schools of his native state and completed 
in those of Webster county. His agricultural training, like that 
of the average country youth, was begun in childhood, his duties 
being increased from year to year as his strength and sense of 
responsibility developed. By the time he had attained his ma- 
turity he was thoroughly familiar with the practical methods 
of tilling the fields and caring for the crops and soon thereafter 
began operating a farm of his own of a hundred and twenty acres 
in Colfax township. The excellent training he had received under 
his father, united with his diligence and determrnation of ])ur- 
pose readily enabled him to win success. Not onl\- was he able 
to further improve his original holding but he kept adding to his 
tract until he owned three hundred and eighty acres. General 
farming and stock-raising engaged Mr. Mallinger's entire atten- 
tion until KJ07. when he rented his place and removed to 1 )ini- 
combe. The ne.xt year he became associated with six others in 
the organization of the Duncombe Cement Tile Company, of 
which he has ever since been the manager. In 1910, together 
with P. T. P'lynn and James Toohey, he went into the automobile 
business, having the local agency of both the ]"ord and Case cars. 
This proved to be a very lucrative venture and the next year they 
built a fireproof garage thirty-seven by seventy feet. This firm 
also operates a garage at Fort Dotlge, where they have extensive 
property interests. When the Farmers Savings H.-mk was or- 
ganized in October. 191 t. Mr. Mallinger still finther strength- 
ened his connection with local business interests by accepting the 
presidency of this enterprise, and here as elsewhere has given 
efficient service. He owns one of the best residences in the town 
and two blocks of residence lots. 



148 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

On the 8th of February, 1893, Mr. MaUinger was married to 
Miss Margaret Wagner, a daughter of Bernard and Mary (Fid- 
dler) Wagner, natives of Germany. Of this marriage tliere have 
been born six children : William, who is fifteen years of age ; Cath- 
erine, who is six; Joseph, who has passed his third birthday; John, 
who died in 1895 ^t the age of one year; Matthew, who died when 
five weeks old in 1895; and Peter, who died in 1897. 

The parents are communicants of the Roman Catholic church 
and fraternally Mr. Mallinger is a member of the Knights of Co- 
lumbus. He is a democrat in politics and is a member of the town 
council, while for four years he was assessor of Colfa.x township. 
Mr. Mallinger is a man of more than average diligence and busi- 
ness sagacity, as he has evidenced in his career, and is meet- 
ing with the prosperity invariably won through the intelligent 
exercise of these qualities. 



LORENZO S. COFFIN. 



Iowa has furnished her full quota of eminent men to the nation, 
men of pronounced ability who have become leaders in statescraft, 
in commercial, industrial and professional life, and others, whose in- 
fluence has been given for the amelioration of conditions that in any 
way oppose or hinder the development of their fellowmen. Quiet and 
unostentatious in manner, seeking not self-aggrandizement in any 
direction, Lorenzo S. Coffin has liecome known as one of the most 
honored sons of the Hawkeye state, not because he has won distinc- 
tion in politics, or even because he has attained exceptional success 
in business, but because his efforts ha\e been, and are still, unsel- 
fishly given for the benefit of his fellowmen. Recognizing the law of 
universal brotherhood, his sympathetic spirit has prompted action, that, 
guided by sound practical judgment, has resulted in great good. He 
has long since passed the Psalmist's span of three score years and ten, 
the snows of eighty-nine winters having fallen upon his head, but old 
age is not necessarily a synonym of weakness and it need not suggest 
as a matter of course inactixity or helplessness. There is an old age 
which is a benediction to all with whom it comes in contact; that gives 
out of its riches stores of wisdom and experience and grows stronger 
mentally and spiritually as the days pass. Such is it with Lorenzo S. 



t'. 











HISTORY Ol- WEBSTER COUNTY 151 

Coffin, whose career is a source of encouragement to his contem- 
poraries and an abiding lesson to the young. 

In pioneer days of Webster county Mr. Coffin took up his abode 
within her borders. He was born in .\hon, Xew Hampshire, April 
9, 1823, on the farm which was also the birthplace of his father, 
Stephen Coffin. The family is of English lineage, and at an early 
epoch in American development was founded in Massachusetts, whence 
the grandfather of our subject removed to the Granite state, .settling 
on the farm on which both Stephen and Lorenzo Coffin were l)i)rn. 
There he spent his remaining days, carrying on agricultural pursuits. 
His death occurred when he was about seventy-five years of age. 
In his family were nine children, all of whom reached mature years 
and reared families of their own. 

Stephen Coffin was trained to the work of the home farm and for 
many years carried on agricultural pursuits in Xew Hampshire. He 
was also a clergyman of the Baptist church and his intluence was 
widely felt in behalf of Christianity. He died in Dover, New Hamp- 
shire, when about seventy-five years of age. His wife bore the maiden 
name of Deborah' Philbrook and died at the age of thirty-eight. She 
was a native of Sanbornton, New Hampshire, representing an early 
family of sturdy pioneers. Her father, David Philbrook, was born 
at Hampton Beach, New Hampshire, and spent the greater part of his 
life on the farm at Sanbornton. He lived to the advanced age of more 
than ninety years — a noble Christian man who commanded the re- 
spect of all with whom he came in contact. He had eight sons and 
eight daughters, all of whom reached mature years, and to each he 
gave good educational privileges, thus fitting them for life's prac- 
tical duties. In the family of Stephen and Deborah (Philbrook) 
Coffin were three daughters and a son. Catherine P. Coffin was a 
teacher in the seminary in Charleston, Massachusetts. She married 
Benjamin Stanton and both engaged in educational work for several 
years at Union College, Schnectady. New York. Christiana liecame 
the wife of Rev. D. B. Cowell, of Maine. She possessed considerable 
poetical talent and was a writer for many magazines and papers. Her 
death occurred in 1863. Sarah, who was the wife of Mr. Lynde, died 
when about sixty years of age. 

Upon his father's farm Lorenzo S. Coffin s])ent his youth and early 
became familiar with the labor of field and meadow. His educa- 
tional advantages at the time were meager, but later the family re- 
moved to Wolfboro, New Hamp.shirc. where he became a student in 
the Wolfboro Academy. He lost his mother when fourteen years of 



152 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

age but continued at home until he had attained his majority, when he 
began working as a farm hand in the home neighborhood, and thus 
he acquired a sum sufficient to enable him to continue his education 
and prepare for teaching, a profession which he followed with suc- 
cess for some time. Oberlin College, of Oberlin, Ohio, was then one 
of the most popular schools of the country and he went there with the 
intention of pursuing an extended course of study, but remained only 
a year and a half in the preparatory department of the college. 

In the meantime Mr. Coffin was united in marriage to Miss Cynthia 
T. Curtis, and they went to Geauga county, Ohio, where both engaged 
in teaching in the Geauga Seminary. Among their pupils were James 
A. Garfield and Lucretia Rudolph, his future wife, who first met in 
that school. The failing health of Mrs. Coffin obliged them to give 
up teaching after one year's connection with Geauga Seminary, and 
in the winter of 1854-5 Mr. Coffin came to Iowa on a business trip. 
Being pleased with Webster county and the advantages oft'ered and 
with firm faith in its future he resolved to locate here. He secured a 
claim of one hundred and sixty acres, which he entered when the 
government placed the land on the market, and thus began the de- 
velopment of his fine farm, to which he has added by subsequent pur- 
chases from time to time until he now owns seven hundred and twenty 
acres. The experience of his boyhood and early manhood upon the 
farm now proved very valuable to him. With characteristic energy 
he began the development of his land, and Willow Edge Farm is now- 
one of the most desirable and valuable farming properties in the state, 
supplied with all modern improvements and accessories. On the brow 
of the hill about three miles from Fort Dodge, near which he decided 
to erect his buildings, is a large spring of purest water, flowing con- 
tinually, while other springs upon the place feed the stream, the 
Lizzard, which winds its way, bordered by magnificent forest trees, 
through the farm. Mr. Coffin has made a specialty of the breeding 
and raising of fine stock, and now owns one of the largest and choicest 
herds of shorthorn cattle to be found in the west, keeping from one 
hundred to two hundred head. He also breeds for the market Poland 
China hogs and Oxford Down sheep, generally keeping one hundred 
and fifty to two hundred and fifty or more of the latter. From two 
to five men are employed upon the farm and the work is under the 
immediate supervision of J. I. Rutledge, son-in-law of Mr. Coffin, 
who is a joint-owner in the stock on the farm. Modern machinery, 
practical and improved methods and all conveniences and accessories 
for facilitating the work are here found. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 153 

Not long after coming to this home Mr. Coffin was called upon 
to mourn the loss of his wife, who died April 20, 1856. In February, 
1857, he was again married, his second union being with ^liss Mary 
Chase, of Orleans county. New York. Three children were born 
unto them, but only one is living, Carrie C, the wife of J. I. Rutledge. 
One child died in infancy and Kitty May died at the age of fourteen 
years. 

While successfully conducting his private business affairs, Mr. Coffin 
never confines his efforts selfishly to his work. From 1859 to 1876 he 
used to leave his home Sunday mornings very early and on horseback 
would ride to different parts of the country, where no minister was 
sent, and preach the Gospel. He would often ride forty miles and in 
return never received a dollar in pay, doing it all for the benefit of his 
fellowmen, during which time he also conducted a great many funerals. 
In the early days he was the editor of the agricultural department of 
the Fort Dodge Messenger and many have profited by his practical 
wisdom as set forth in the columns of that paper. For many years 
he was also an active member of the State Agricultural Society and 
labored earnestly and effectively in connection with that organization 
to promote the interests of the farming people throughout the state, 
but while his interest in the subject has never abated, other duties 
have made heavy demands upon his time, forcing him to cease his 
work in that field to attend to more pressing needs. He had in the 
meantime sensed his country loyally in the Civil war, enlisting in the 
fall of 1862 as a member of Company I, Thirty-second Iowa Infantry. 
He joined the army as a private, but was promoted in turn sergeant, 
quartermaster sergeant and chaplain. F'or about a year lie remained 
at the front and then returned to his home. 

Perhaps the work which has made Mr. Cofifin most widely known 
and which has been of the broadest benefit to his fellowmen is that 
in connection with providing better conditions for railroad employes. 
In the year 1883 he was appointed by Governor Sherman to fill a 
vacancy on the railroad commission, caused by the retirement of the 
Hon. James Wilson, and on the expiration of that term in 1885 was 
reappointed, continuing in the office until 1888. It was during this 
period that Mr. Coffin became interested in that which he is making 
his life work — promoting the happiness and improving the condition 
of railroad men. In speaking of his experience he says : "It seems, as 
I look back through the years of my past life, that I can sec the guid- 
ing of a Divine Providence bringing me to the position wiiere I might 
realize the condition of the great multitude of suffering, helpless men, 



154 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

the misery of whose condition seemed to be growing worse every day, 
with no indication or hope of its growing better, and as I occupied the 
position of railroad commissioner, receiving reports continually from 
all over the state and the United States of the terrible slaughter and 
crippling of railroad men, I then for the first time saw the need for 
work in this field and detemiined by the help of God to do something 
to alleviate the suffering of those men." He then immediately began 
to investigate more fully the conditions and surroundings of the rail- 
road men of the country and to agitate the subject of the power brake 
and automatic car coupler, and finally Succeeded in securing the enact- 
ment of the law requiring them to be placed on all cars on lines in 
Iowa, which was passed by the Iowa s'tate legislature in 1888. This 
was the first practical law ever enacted by any state for the safety 
of railroad men. The law was strongly opposed by the railroad com- 
panies. Railroad managers said its enforcement would cost them 
millions of dollars annually and would do little, if anything, toward 
lessening the likelihood of accident. Through the efforts of Mr. 
Coffin and the cooperation of societies of railroad employes and of 
private citizens to whom the record of railroad accidents was appall- 
ing, the law was linally passed, with the result that the number of 
accidents on railroads, caused simply in the coupling of cars alone, 
has been reduced three-fourths. 

To the compiler of this sketch Air. Coffin said: "To Iowa must 
be given the honor of enacting into law the first practical bill ever 
presented to any legislature for the safety of life and limb of rail- 
road men." It was drafted by Mr. Coffin and he says that he spent a 
full month on the bill. So anxious was he that the bill should be so 
drawn that no court could set it aside as unconstitutional, that he 
consulted with one of the judges of the Iowa supreme court on every 
section of it. Mr. Coffin has the great satisfaction of knowing that 
from the day it became a law its constitutionality has never been 
questioned. He says that it went through the Iowa legislature with 
practically a unanimous vote, not a vote against it in the senate and 
only three or four against it in the house. The roads were given 
five years to do the work of equipping their cars with the safety ap- 
pliances that the law required. But here came a great dilemma — 
all of the Iowa roads were interstate roads and engaged in the inter- 
state traffic. Foreign cars from outside roads would, of course, have 
to be equipped in the same manner as the cars of the Iowa roads or 
they could not receive them, or else the lading must all be transferred 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 155 

from these foreign cars to the Iowa cars. Here was a very serious 
problem to be faced. 

Mr. Coffin said : "The only way to solve that problem that showed 
itself to me was through a way so strewn with \ast difficulties that 
it was absolutely appalling and I dared not face it for awhile. Yet 
it seemed to me it must be done. Some, of the states adjoining Iowa 
copied my bill and made it into a law. If only all the states would 
do the same and not change a section it woukl be just the thing, but 
I could not expect that, and it would take a long while to go from 
one state to another to get them to pass the same kind of a law. The 
more I thought of it, I made up my mind that it would be a practical 
impossibility, and so the alternative was forced on me that a national 
law must be had. Of course this meant that I must go to Washington 
and try to get a bill through congress. This seemed so utterly beyond 
all possibility for a man like me to accomplish that for a while I 
thought that I would not undertake it, but I could not rest. In my 
dreams I would see these railroad men crushed between the ends of the 
cars, hear their aw ful screams as the iron wheels ground them to pieces 
untler the cars. Finally I thought that I must try, or at least that I 
would go to Chicago and talk with some of the railroad officials there 
and ask their advice. I felt sure that the companies that ran roads 
ihniugh Iiiwa would like lo ha\e all i ithcr roads to equip their cars 
as theirs were to he, so there would lie an easy iiucrchange of cars 
from one road to another. I thought that would help in this great 
move. To show how hopeless the undertaking was in their judgment 
I will relate what was said in my talk with Marvin Ilughitt, president 
of the Chicago & Xorthwestern Railway. \\'hen I went into his office 
he was busy examining some papers, and alter a little while he said 
in rather a sharp and vexed tone: 'Xow, Mr. Coffin, as you have 
got your state to enact that law, I want that you siiould go to every 
state adjoining Iowa and get them to enact such a law as Iowa has.' 
I said that I realized the great importance of a uniform law and could 
see no way to secure it only through congress, ami that I had aljout 
made up my mind to go down to Washington and get it to pass my 
bill. Mr. Hughitt dropped the papers he had in liis hand on the table 
before him and looked at me with great amazement and said: 'Mr. 
Coffin, congress is a great body: you can't move that.' My after-ex- 
perience showed me how well that man judged of what, as he well 
thought, a wild undertaking, and how well he understood and ap- 
preciated the difficulties I would have to encounter. 



156 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUXTY 

"In the spring of 1888 the interstate commerce commission, then 
just organized, invited what state railroad commissioners were then 
created, to come to Washington and hold a conference. That noted 
jurist, Judge Cooley, of Michigan, was president of the national com- 
mission. Although my term of office had expired a few weeks before 
the date of that conference, our state commission urged me to attend 
that meeting. I did so, and near the close of the last session of that 
meeting, by the request of a member of the Iowa board, I was asked 
by Judge Cooley to address the conference. This I, of course did, 
giving them the mass of statistics I had been compiling, which was 
new to them all. After I had sat down commissioners from other 
states gathered around me and said: 'Mr. Coffin, you must be wrong, 
for we can't think that it is possible that there is such a fearful killing 
and maiming of our railroad men.' I assured them that they were 
absolutely correct, as far as Iowa was concerned, for they were from 
the reports of the roads themselves to our state board, as our law 
required them to report to us everj^ accident to their men. 

"As but \ery few of the states had as yet required the roads to 
report as ours did, I had to get the number of killed and injured in 
other states b\' the rule of three. If Iowa, with so many miles of 
road, had so many accidents to their men, how many will all the miles 
in the nation give us? Afterward, from a talk with an old railroad 
man. I found that my basis of calculation was wrong, for I should 
have taken it by the number of engines, for on most all cif the roads 
east there would be a great many more trains a day than in the then 
sparsely settled Iowa. When I made my computations on this basis 
the total was so awful that I did not dare to give the e.xact figures to 
the public. Aftenvard Judge Cooley wrote me to give to his national 
commission what facts and figures I had gathered up and what other 
infomiation I had gained on this matter in my fi\e years of experience 
as a commissioner. I am telling all this to you, sir, that you may 
see, as I do, the wonderful way I was led on so as to have more and 
more of the standing before the public and the jxjwers that then were. 
Let it be understood all along that I now realized that I was only an 
instrument in the hand of God and the Father, to be used by Him for 
a great good to the great army of railroad men who are now an abso- 
lute necessity to the prosperity of this great country. The information 
I sent to Judge Cooley was by the request of General Benjamin 
Harrison, then president-elect of the United States, sent to him, and 
used by him in his inaugural when he was sworn into his high office. 
He did it in these words : 'It is a disgrace to our civilization that men 



HISTORY OF WKHSTI-.R LOL'XTV 157 

ill a law fill employment for a livelihood should be exposed to greater 
danger than soldiers in the time of actual war." He very strongly 
recommended speedy action by congress. So you see how in this 
unthought of and unpremeditated way a mighty opening was made 
for me. Then 1 had two especially strong and influential friends, one 
in each house of congress. One was W. B. Allison in the senate, and 
Colonel David B. Henderson in the house, now its speaker. Here 
again was another of the series of special pnnidences that show so 
plainly all along the road, but of which 1 was not aware then, but 
now can see as clearly as the noonday sun. Some years before at 
one of the congressional elections it was a question whether Colonel 
Henderson would be returned, as he at that time had a very strong 
^competitor, and I sujipose that it is no egotism in me to say what was 
then pretty well understood to be the fact, that my influence with the 
railroad boys and w ith the farmers of his district had much to do with 
saving him. This had made him a firm friend, and he w-as ready to aid 
me all in his power, which was great, and he wielded it to good ad- 
vantage for the bill. Well, the 4th of March was coming on. I had 
been working on the bill for congress with a great deal of care and 
labor. I lia:d been very an.xious before the inauguration to have Mr. 
Harrison say a word for the boys in his address. I wanted td know 
how he felt, but ne\er lia\ing met him. and there being such a throng 
around him, 1 could see no way to get to him to ask him to remember 
the boys. Finally, Colonel Henderson gave me a letter to him, and so 
I had a chance to speak to him. His first words after reading the 
letter were, "Well, what is it?' In as few wurds as I could I told what 
I wanted, hi an instant he replied. 'It is in there.' meaning in his 
address, and those were his last words to me. I grasped his hand, 
thanked him with tears in my eyes and left. 

"Congress convened. My bills were introduced and referred to 
the committee on interstate commerce. F'or four long years I was in 
what was called the third house of congress, "the lobby.' It is not 
necessary for me to try to tell you of the long struggle. It would 
fill a book. I fully realized that public opinion had much to do with 
acts of congress, so wherever I heard of a great gathering of influ- 
ential men, such as great gatherings of church officials of every de- 
nomination, there I would go and get a few moments time to plead 
for the lives and limbs of the railroad boys and for Sunday rest as 
well, getting them to pass strong resolutions which I had usually 
already prepared. And so I worked. The first congress of Harrison's 
administration closed without my being able to get the bills out of the 



158 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

committee's hands. They were introduced again at the opening of 
his last congress, and from that time on the railroads were there in 
force fighting the bill. They told the committee that it would cost 
the roads one hundred million dollars to meet the requirements of 
that hill. But God loved these trainmen more than He did the millions 
of the corporations, and the bill went through and President Harrison 
signed it and made it a law two days before he left his high office, on 
the 2d of ]\Iarch, 1893. The law gave the roads five years to equip 
their cars as the law directed, but near the close of the fifth year the 
roads came before the interestate commerce commission and pleaded 
for five vears more, but the five railroad brotherhoods with myself were 
there in opposition, and they got only two years and then seven months 
after that. As the result of that law there are at least fifteen hundred 
less deaths and over five thousand less painful accidents per year than 
when President Harrison signed that bill. So beneficial is this law- 
found to be in an economical sense, to say nothing of the saving 
of life and limb, that the very officials that then called me a crank 
and alnised me so unmercifully, now take me by the hand and thank 
nie for what they then cursed me for. Yet it never seems to me 
that I have done anything but what was my plain duty to do after 
the awful facts came to my knowledge. I never could have respected 
myself if I had refused to try, frightened at the lions I really saw in 
the way. So then let the praise go where it belongs, to God." 

Mr. Coffin certainly deserves the unbounded gratitude of all rail- 
road men throughout the country, by securing the enactment of the 
national law which was passed by congress March 2. 1893. When 
President Harrison signed the "safety appliance bill"' the interstate 
commerce commission rei)orts show that there were twenty-seven hun- 
dred and thirty-seven railroad men killed that year and over thirty- 
three thousand injured, some being badly crippled for life. After the 
cars were equipped as the law directs, the commission reports that the 
effect of that law Jiad reduced the casualties to railroad men over 
sixty-five per cent, notwithstanding that had been a dull \ear for the 
railroads and far less men were employed than in other years: so 
that it is perfectly safe to say that two thousand were and ha\e l)een 
saved and over twenty thousand painful accidents ha\e been pre- 
vented yearly since 1900. 

That Mr. Coffin's efforts along this line have received well deserved 
recognition from men of ability and weight who are capable of ap- 
preciating their true value may be plainly seen by this statement in a 
letter written by Rev. William Salter, D. D. "When I read Mr. 



HISTORY Ol'- \VEI5STER COUNTY 159 

Coffin's article a thrill of pleasure and state pride ran through me 
that Iowa had a man of such divine humanity and of so much patience, 
skill antl tact to do such good work and to tell the story in the sim|)le 
and direct style of Ben F"ranklin"s autobiography. It ought to have a 
wide circulation."' Mr. Salter also wrote Mr. Coffin personally to 
express his appreciation of the splendid work accomplished. In a 
letter dated January i8, 1903, he says: "I have just read your de- 
lightful paper in The .\nnals for this month and heg to send you my 
hearty thanks and a few blessings for writing it. You have added an 
additional benefit to the great services you have rendered to humanity 
by giving the history of your labors for 'Safe .Appliances on Rail- 
roads' in so clear and vigorous a style and with such admirable sim- 
plicity and straightforwardness. Your pajier will become a classic in 
Iowa literature and bring honor to our state as well as to yourself 
that its author is an Iowa man. It will encourage other good minds 
in the future to labor with [latieuce and hope like your own for 
amelioration aiul ini])rovement in e\ery department of industry and 
commerce and trade. With sentiments of high respect and warm 
esteem, very sincerely yours, William Salter." 

Mr. Coffin has done more than any other in(li\idual to promote 
temperance among railroad men l>y the use (jf what is known as the 
"white Initton." He has bad made a little white l)Ulton. in which 
are the initials R. R. T. A. — Railroad Temperance .\ssociation — and 
these buttons he gives to all railroad employes who will promise to 
wear one and abstain from the use of liquor, lie has i)aid out over 
five thou.sand dollars alone for these buttons, having distributed more 
than two hundred and fifty thousand of them, and is still engaged in 
the work, always having a supply of them when he travels. This 
conspicuous little button is a constant reminder to the wearer that he 
has given his word to abstain from the use of those beverages which 
destroy manhood and render tiie individual unfitted for the perform- 
ance of life's duties. A lasting monument to the work of Mr. Coffin 
is seen in the home for the disabled and infirm railroad men at High- 
land Park, Illinois, near Chicago. .\ll brotherhood railroad men are 
eligible as members, the only requirement being that they contribute 
as much as "the expense of one cigar a month. " This entitles any 
brotherhood man in railroad employ, in case of accident or inability, 
to a good home for life, containing all necessities and comforts. .\t 
this time the work is progressing nicely under the guidance of Mr. 
Coffin and the cooperation of the four railroad brotherhoods, the 
Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, the Brotherhood of Locomotive 



160 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUxNTY 

Firemen, the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen and the Order of 
Railway Conductors. These four orders have contributed to the home 
and at the present time they are planning an eighty thousand dollar 
fire-proof building as an addition to the present home. There are now 
between sixty-five and seventy-five inmates. Mr. Coffin is the presi- 
dent of the Railroad Employes" Home, and, more than that, he is the 
friend of all railroad men, having a warm personal interest in their 
welfare. The home is now complete and represents an expenditure of 
about one hundred and forty thousand dollars. 

Another important work which will stand as a monument to Mr. 
Coffin's philanthropy is the home for e.K-convicts which he organized 
and promoted in connection with other leading citizens of Fort Dodge 
and the vicinity. In 189 1 he donated twenty acres of land and ten 
thousand dollars in cash for the building, besides devoting a great 
deal of his time to the work. Upon its completion it was one of the 
finest structures of this character in \\'ebster county and it continued 
as a convicts' home for six years, when the Anamosa penitentiary was 
turned into a reformatory and here the work which Mr. Coffin had 
begun was carried on. He, therefore, deeded the original building and 
twenty acres of land to the Woman's Christian Temperance Union of 
Iowa, in order that they might there establish the Benedict Home, 
which was formerly located at Des Moines. At tlie present time there 
are thirty inmates of this institution and since its foundation it nas 
cared for and relieved over thirteen hundred girls, all of whom have 
benefited by the worthy and useful teachings of Mrs. McClelland, who 
is the superintendent and directs the work of a number of assistants. 
In the last few years Mr. Coffin has given much of his time and 
attention to the promotion of a work in which he has always been 
interested, namely, that of the spreading of temperance among all 
classes, but esi>ecially among the railroad men. In the promotion of 
this enterprise he has spent five thousand dollars for temperance badges 
and has distributed o\-cr two hundred and fifty thousand white but- 
tons which are the insignia of the cause. Mr. Coffin in writing of the 
work which he has done in the Railroad Temperance Association, says : 
"It is not yet two years since the white Ijutton started on its mission. 
Now go where one will he finds it worn by railroad men wherever 
a locomoti\e whistle is heard. That little pledge button for grander 
manhood, pleads for happier homes, pleads for wife and children; 
has been heard by thousands of brave, great-hearted men, who have 
been true as steel to its meaning. The wearing of the white button is 
the practical carrying out of the teachings of true brotherhood jirin- 



HISTORY OF WRr.STI-R fOlXI^- u;i 

ciples as taught in the lodge room. Tliere all are not only taught but 
bind thenisehes under solemn obligation to care for the wives and 
children of each brother. Everyone knows that the greatest enemy to 
the family of a brother railroad man is the sakion. The wearing of 
the white button by brothers who never go inside a saloon is a strong 
and earnest appeal to a weak brother to keep out. It means that we 
are defenders of home, that we love our future, our wives and our 
children more than we do a saloon. It means that the great brother- 
hoods of railroad men have escaped froni the saloon's fascinating 
power." 

Mr. Coffin has ever been a friend to the poor and needy, lu the 
oppressed and the suffering, and. believing that the spark of divinity 
is in e\ery individual and may be fanned into flame, he is ever ready 
to extend a helping hand to those in need of either material or moral 
assistance. His home while in Ohio was a station on the famous 
underground railroad when slavery existed in the land and his strong 
abolition principles led him to ally himself with the republican party 
when it was formed to prevent the further extension of sla\ery. I U- 
has since been one of its stalwart supporters. 

To what church does he belong? We answer, to tlie church which 
Christ founded when he said, "Go ye into all the world and preach 
the Gospel," when he gave the mandate, "Bear ye one another's bur- 
dens," and said, "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least 
of these, my brethren, ye have done it unto me." One of the most 
interesting features of the Willow Edge Farm is its chapel, which he 
built, about twelve years ago for the benefit of his daughter, who was 
greatly interested in Sunday-school w(5rk. In connection with the 
same is a circulating library for the community. Services are held 
Sunday afternoons — held in the afternoon that they need not con- 
flict w ith the morning or evening services of the city ciiurches. Pastors 
and people of all denominations are welcome, and the gospel of Christ 
— forgiveness and love — is preached. Along the same line of Chri.stian 
liberality is his effective work in the Young Men's Christian Associa- 
tion, in which almost each Sunday he addresses a meeting of this 
organization. 

His sympathies took the practical form of liberal financial sup- 
port, for he contributed one hundred dollars to the building in Mar- 
shalltown, Iowa, of the first Railroad Young Men's Christian Associa- 
tion ever erected in Iowa. Mr. Coffin delivered the address of rledica- 
tion and has since been actively intercstcti in the movement. 

4 



162 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUXTY 

In business he has achieved splendid success, but the most envious 
could not grudge him his prosperity so worthily has it been won, so 
well used. He has builded to himself a monument more lasting than 
stone in the freewill offering of grateful hearts. 

Who can measure the influence of such a life? 

"Our echoes roll from soul to soul 
And grow forever and forever." 



KXUTSOX BROTHERS. 



.\dolph and Alfred Knutson, twin brothers, are operating one 
of the most prosperous business enterprises in Badger, being engaged 
in the implement and automobile business with which they have 
been connected for the past seven years. This is only one of 
the many important undertakings with which they have become 
identified in the course of fourteen years of active business life, 
during which time they have never separated their interests, work- 
hig harmoniously together lo their mutual advantage. They 
were born in Badger, August jH. 1877, and are the .sons of 
Christopher and Anna (Arent) Knutson. natives of X'orwav. 
The brothers were reared at home and were educated in the 
public schools of Badger, finishing their education at Tobin 
College in Fort Dodge, Iowa, .\fter coniiileting their studies 
they engaged in farming in partnership, operating their father's 
tract of land for five years. .\t the end of that time they 
sold the property and went to North Dakota, where each took up a 
homestead claim, wliich they still own. They combined their prop- 
erties and operated the enterprise as one large farm, being en- 
gaged at the same time in the buying and selling of land. After 
two years they returned to Badger and established themselves 
in the implement and automobile business, with \Yhich they have 
been identified for the past seven years with constantly increasing 
success. They also own and operate a cement block factorv anrl 
own the building in which they are doing business as well as their 
own home in the residence section of the village. They also own 
a valuable farm of one hundred and twenty acres in Badger 
township. They have been in all the business relations of their 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 163 

lives upright, straightforward and honorable and these qualities dis- 
tinguish their private characters. 

Adolph Knutsoii was married in October, 1909, to Miss Cora 
Lund, a daughter of Rasmus and Anna (Christenson) Lund, 
natives of Norway. Mrs. Knutson's father came to America with 
his parents at an early date, locating in Badger township, Webster 
county. When he grew to manhood he became identified with a 
local railroad and later went to St. Paul, Minnesota, where he fol- 
lowed the same line of occupation for twenty years, returning at 
the end of that time to Badger, where he purchased land. He 
operated his farm for several years and only abandoned agriculture 
in order to serve as sheriff, which office he still holds, .\dolph 
Knutson and his wife have a daughter. Ruth C. who is a year and 
a half old. 

The two brothers affiliate with the republican party and .\llred 
served as assessor of Badger township for three years and as justice 
of the peace for two years. He also did able and effective work as 
a member of the -town council. Both brothers are stockholders in- 
the Fanners Elevator Company and in the Badger Telephone Com- 
pany, and affiliate with the Improved Order of Red Men. the Modern 
W'oodmen of America and the Loyal Order of Moose, being also 
prominent in the Masonic order. They belong to the Lutheran 
church. Th^ir relations have always been most harmonious and 
their partnership productive of good results. Both are active, pro- 
gressive and substantial business men with the ability to make 
their enterprises successful. They do not neglect tbcii" duties 
as citizens and though they are only thirty-five years of age, have 
gained distinct prosperity which promises well for greater future 
attainment. 



LOUIS W. NEWDECK. 



The agricultural and stock-raising interests of Webster county 
found an able and successful representative in the late Louis W. 
Newdeck, who owned and operated eight hundred and eighty 
acres of land in Douglas townsiiii). He was born in St. .\ntliony, 
now East Minneapolis, Minnesota, on the 3d of May, j8$j. His 
parents were Louis and Catherine (Wolf) Newdeck. natives of 
Germany, the father's birth having occurre<l in WurtcndicTg on 



164 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Christmas day, 1821, and that of the mother in Westphalia, on 
the 7th of December, 1826. Louis Newdeck emigrated to the 
United States in 1842, first locating in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 
Prom there he went to Illinois, where he engaged in the cattle 
business, following which he conducted a dry-goods store in 
Stillwater, Minnesota. He subsequently became identified with 
the lumber interests of St. Anthony, that state, being one of the 
pioneer settlers of that vicinity. At the time of the Indian uprising 
in 1862, he joined Anson Xorthrup's company organized among 
the settlers, remaining in the service until the natives were sub- 
dued and peace was once more restored. The next year he 
crossed the plains to Helena, Montana, where he established a 
cattle ranch. He remained there until the spring of 1864, when 
he returned to Minnesota, but he later went back to the west, and 
was killed by the Indians while crossing the plains with a load 
of provisions for a mining camp in the gold fields of Idaho. He 
was long survived by the mother, who died on the 14th of 
April, 1881. 

The boyhood and youth of Louis W. Newdeck were passed in 
his native state, his education being obtained in the public schools 
of Minneapolis. He was a promising and capable youth, and in 
1870, at the age of eighteen years began his business career in 
Duluth. Minnesota, where he owned and conducted a meat market 
for a year. .\t the expiration of that time he went to Austin, 
Minnesota, and there engaged in the same business until 1872, 
when he removed to Red \\ing, Minnesota. He conducted a meat 
market in the latter place for nine years with very good suc- 
cess, and at the end of that period went to Minneapolis, where 
he engaged extensively in the meat and cattle business until 
T887. In the latter year he came to Webster county and pur- 
chased eight hundred and eighty acres of fertile land in Douglas 
township. The remainder of his life was devoted to agricultural 
pursuits and stock-raising in both of which activities hg met with 
more than an average degree of success. He bred Polled Angus 
cattle, his herd numbering two hundred head, French coach 
horses and Poland China hogs, all high-grade stock. He was 
widely known throughout this part of the state as a stockman, 
and had one of the best developed and equipped farms in the 
county. He was a tireless worker, possessed more than average 
foresight and sagacity in recognizing business opportunities and 
was endowed Avith the diligence and enterprise that enabled him 



HISTORY OF WECSTKR COUNTY 165 

to successfully develop anything- he undertook. From early 
youth he led a life of marked activity, and as his powers were 
capably organized and intelligently directed he prospered in the 
promotion of his interests. 

On the 9th of October, 1878, ]\Ir. Xewdeck was married to Miss 
Clara O. Eames, a daughter of Captain Obadiah and iMary (Bige- 
low) Eames. The father was born in 1824 and died in 1881. while 
the mother's birth occurred in 1837 and her death in 1904. Five 
children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Newdeck, Winnie E., Louis 
M.. Harry W'., Mabel C. and Gertrude M. 

Mr. Newdeck was prominently connected with the Masonic 
fraternity, and in matters of religious faith he was a Methodist, 
his widow and children also being identified with this church. 
In politics he was a stanch democrat. Mr. Newdeck was one of 
the foremost agriculturists of the county, in the progress and 
development of which he took an active and helpful interest, 
belonging- to that class of men, who in the development of their, 
personal interests, never lose sight of their duties as citizens. 



MRS. EMMA ROY. 



^Irs. Emma Roy, who has been postmaster of Moorland since 
1910, has made her home in Webster county for over ihiriy- 
two years. She is a native of Missouri, her birth having occurred 
in St. Louis in August, 1864. She is a daughter of Thomas and 
Mary (Kerns) O'Melia, who were born in Ireland. The father 
emigrated to the United States in early life, locating in St. Louis, 
and was employed on steamboats plying on the Mississippi river 
until 1866. In that year, he decided to seek his fortune in the 
gold fields of California, and leaving his fami'ly in St. Louis went 
to San Francisco. There he passed the remainder of his life, his 
death occurring about 1870. He is survived by his widow, who 
is seventy-one years of age and makes her home with her daugh- 
ter, in Moorland. 

The first sixteen years in the life of Mrs. Roy were passed 
in St. Louis, her education being obtained in the public schools. 
In 1880, she and her mother removed to Webster county, which 
has since been their place of residence. 



166 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNT Y 

In the month of December, 1885. was celebrated tlie marriage 
of Emma O'Melia to James Roy, a son of Peter and Mary 
(O'Neil) Roy, natives of Canada. Of this marriage were born 
two children: Frank, who is twenty-four years of age and a resi- 
dent of Chicago; and Louise, who is twenty-two years of age, 
a trained nurse of Des Moines, Iowa. 

In religious faith the family are Roman Catholics. Mrs. Roy 
is a capable woman and has many friends in Moorland, where for 
two years she has held the office of postmaster, discharging her 
duties in a highly creditable manner. 



WILFRED E. ALTON, M. D. 

, A progressive and enterprising mind scientifically inclined, a thor- 
ough knowledge of surgery in all its intricacies, the power of deep 
and continuous study and a firm faith in the present and ultimate use- 
fulness of life are the qualities which make Dr. Wilfred E. Alton a 
prominent and efficient physician. He is now practicing with rapidly 
increasing success in Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he is well known as a 
representative member of his profession. He was born in Monroe 
county, Wisconsin, December 4, 1863. His father, Joseph Alton, 
was a member of a prominent family of that name, whose ancestral 
home is in Athelstan, England. He was born on the ocean, the son 
of an officer in the English navy. He went to New York with his 
parents when he was still a child and was educated in the public 
schools of the state- When he laid aside his books he immediately ' 
engaged in agricultural pursuits, residing for a short time in New 
York, but subsequently removed to Wisconsin, where he remained 
until 1872. In that year he went to Minnesota and settled on a 
farm which he operated, improved and cultivated with much success 
until his death, in March, 1906, at the age of eighty-^ix years. He 
took part in the Civil war as a member of the Twenty-third Wiscon- 
sin Volunteer Infantry, serving for one year, after which he re- 
ceived his honorable discharge. He was an active participant in the 
engagement with the Indians which has since become known as the 
Spirit Lake massacre. In all the relations of life Joseph Alton was 
distinguished by thorough honesty and integrity of purjwse and his 
death caused widespread and genuine regret. His wife, Matilda 




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HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 1G9 

(Barrett) Alton, whose birtli occurred in Xew York state, died in 
June. 1904, two years before the demise of her husband. 

Dr. .\hon was nine years of age wiien his parents removed to 
Minnesota. He receixed his primary education in tlie public schools 
of that state and made use of every opportunity to expand his knowl- 
edge. He was graduated from the Wadena high school and imme- 
diately entered the State University of ^linnesota. He engaged in 
teaching school from 18S6 until 1890. It was his desire to become 
a member of the medical profession but he did not receive paternal 
sanction to this plan. His father on the contrary wished him to be- 
come a farmer and otYered him a section of land if he would remain 
at home. He felt, however, that his opportunity was in the otlier 
direction and refused to devote himself to agricultural pursuits. The 
fact that his father would not give him a cent to aid him in prepar- 
ing for practice did not cause him to lose heart. He knew that others 
had been able to make their way through college unaided and re- 
solved that he would also do so. In 1891 he began his studies and 
in 1896 was graduated from the Chicago Homeopathic Medical Col- 
lege. During the last year his living cost him on an average of nine 
cents per day. He brought to his early studies in medicine a keen 
and intelligent interest in the profession which he intended to adopt, 
marked sympathy w ith the sick and suffering and broad humanitarian 
principles. These qualities guided his actions and influenced his ca- 
reer. When he laid aside his text-books to enter upon his profes- 
sion he located at Estiierxille, Iowa. From 1896 to 1899 he remained 
in that city and built up during these years an enviable practice, to 
wliich he gave his entire time and attention. He came to Fort Dodge 
in 1899 and has been one of the prominent and successful physicians 
in tins city since that time. Dr. .\lton has at all times realized his 
responsibility to the people whom he serves, and, desiring to advance 
his professional attainments, in 1898 he entered the Chicago Poly- 
clinic, pursuing a post-graduate cour.se in medicine until 1901 and 
doing advanced special work in pathology under the al)le instruction 
of the iiead of the surgical staff of that school. In his practice he lias 
specialized to some extent in surgery. He was chief of the surgical 
staff of the Webster City Hospital until 1905, when he became a 
member of the surgical staff of the new St. Joseph Mercy Hospital. 
He is a member of the .\merican Medical .Association, tlie Hahne- 
mann Medical Societies of Chicago and Iowa, and his name is well 
known in all of these organizations. 

Vol. 11—10 



170 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

On March lo, 1898, Dr. Alton was united in marriage to Miss 
Jennie A. Salisbury, a daughter of O. A. and Vestalina (Kenyon) 
Salisbury. The parents were natives of New York and went to 
Wisconsin in the early days of its settlement. In 1888 they removed 
to Estherville, Iowa, where the father took a prominent part in busi- 
ness and political circles until his death in 1905. He was a justice 
of the peace for many years, making a most creditable record in that 
connection. His wife is now living in the family home at Esther- 
ville and has reached the seventy-sixth year of her age. 

Politically Dr. Alton gives his allegiance to the prohibition party 
and is always ready to give his support to its principles. He is a 
member of the Independent Order of Foresters and of the Knights of 
Pythias. He affiliates with the Order of Red Men and belongs to 
the Royal .\rcanum and to the Ancient Order of I'nited \\'orkmen. 
He and his wife are members of the Methodist church in Fort Dodge, 
actively connected with religious work. 

.\lthough deeply interested in his profession. Dr. Alton has not 
allowed medical practice to narrow his mind into a set groove. There 
is hardly ruiy field <if mmiicipal or commercial activity in Fort Dodge 
in which his name is not prominent, and his reputation as a busi- 
ness man is second only to his prominence as a physician. He owns 
two thousand acres of land in Florida and an e.xtensive ranch in Ore- 
gon, lie has in\esled in Oklahoma, Texas and Iowa farms and his 
ventures have always been successful because they have been judi- 
ciously made. He owns the beautiful residence in which he resides 
at No. 1 2 17 Fourth avenue. North, Fort Dodge, and has extensive in- 
terests in local industrial enterprises. He is a stockholder in the Iowa 
Foundry & Machine Company, in the Lehigh Clay Manufacturing 
Company and the Annony Company. He is distinguished in his 
professional and business life by activity, industry and imwavering 
integrity. While he has applied himself "tlosely to the practice of 
medicine and to the conduct of important commercial interests, he has 
also recognized the fact that the nature of a man's recreation is al- 
most as important as the nature of his vocation and has given such 
time to pleasures as to maintain an even balance with his professional 
and business activity. He is an enthusiastic boatsman and has nearly 
comijlelcd one of the largest motor boats e\er l)uilt in Iowa. It is 
a torpetlo type cabin cruiser with staterooms which accommodate 
twelve people and it is one of the most com])letely e(iuipi)ed vessels 
of its kind in the middle west. Dr. Alton contemplates making a 
trij) down the Mississippi to the gulf and is looking forward to this 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 171 

vacation with enthusiasm and eagerness. His friends are numbered 
in every rank of Hfe in Fort Dodge and his life is influenced by genial 
friendliness and by his recognition of the truth of universal brother- 
hood. 



JOHX H. EASTMAN. 



In 1898 John H. Eastman came to Barnum and opened the first 
bank in that \illage, founding it upon standards of conscientiousness 
and honor and gaining his reward in quick success. He is well known 
in local financial circles as a prosperous private banker, being identi- 
fied with the conduct of his original enterprise. He was born in 
Goodhue county, Minnesota, December 22, 1865, and is a son of 
Ransom and Phoebe (Grain) Eastman, the former a native of Ohio 
and the latter of Indiana. The father went to Wisconsin at an 
early date and remained in that state for some time, going later to 
Minnesota, where he purchased land. He improved and operated 
his farm until his death, which occurred in the spring of 1867. His 
wife later married W. G. Rundell, who followed farming for some 
time but later operated a stave factory in Fillmore. Minnesota. After 
four years he engaged in the egg and poultry business in Spring 
Valley, in the same state, and for eight or ten j'ears was successful 
in this enterprise. He then moved to South Haven, ^lichigan. where 
he owns and operates a fine fruit farm. He is a veteran of the Civil 
war, having enlisted at ihc time of President Lincoln's second call 
for volunteers in Company C, Third Minnesota Infanlry, and served 
until the close of the war. He is now seventy-six years of age and 
is still active and successful. 

John H. Eastman began his education in the public schools of 
Spring Valley, Minnesota, and later entered the Oskaloosa, (la.) 
Business College, graduating from that institution with the class of 
1888. Immediately afterward he obtained a position as clerk in a 
clothing store and after eight months of this connection returned 
to Spring Valley, where he kept books for his stepfather for three 
years. His banking experience began at the end of that time, when 
he obtained a position as bookkeeper in the bank at Spring Valley 
and did able and systematic work for two years. In i8<}4 he went 
to Callender, Iowa, and formed a partnership with F. D. Calkin.s, 
formerly county auditor of Kossuth county, in the operation of a 
private bank. They also engaged in the lumber business and were 



172 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

successful in both enterprises. They sold their interests in 1898, 
in which year Mr. Eastman came to Bamum, where he opened the 
first bank in the village, which lie still operates. It is a private enter- 
prise and is conducted along the progressive, yet conservative lines. 
Mr. Eastman understands the details of present-day banking, while 
his systematic mind and his up-to-date methods have been factors in 
his success. The enterprise is capitalized at fifteen thousand dollars 
and is rapidly expanding. ]\Ir. Eastman is interested in various 
local business concerns, holding stock in the Barnum Telephone Com- 
pany, of which he was a director and treasurer for six years. He is 
also identified with the Iowa Land &,Live Stock Company of Fort 
Dodge and owns property in Minnesota and also town lots in Barnum. 
He erected the building which his business occupies and owns his 
attractive and modern home and other property in the village. He 
is also engaged in the implement business here and has a large aiul 
increasing patronage. He is one of the heaviest taxpayers in the 
community, always making his wealth serve worthy ends. 

At Algona, Iowa, on October 15, 1897, ^^''- Eastman was united 
in marriage to Miss Luella W'artman, a daughter of S. S. and Maggie 
(Clancy) Wartman, natives of Canada. In his political affiliations 
Mr. Eastman is a progressive republican and served for eight years 
as a member of the town council and is at the present time town 
treasurer. He held a similar position in connection with the school 
board for about ten years, during which time he did able work along 
educational lines. He is identifieil with the Modern Woodmen of 
America and the Knights of Pythias, holding a membership in the 
latter organization in Minnesota. Mr. Eastman belongs to the Con- 
gregational church. He is an active and industrious citizen, a man 
of good business ability, and as a banker he commands the confi- 
dence and trust of his depositors. He has worked for success but 
counts its attainment secondary in importance to the methods and 
standards by which it has been eflfected. 



JOHN M.VRTIX MLLROXEV. 

John Martin Mulroney is one of the older settlers of Webster 
county, living retired at the southwest corner of Third avenue 
and Seventh street, in Fort Dodge. His has been a somewhat 
eventful life in which unfaltering effort, perseverance and ability 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 173 

have brought him creditable and well earned success. He is now 
eighty years of age for his birth occurred in County Kilkenny, 
Ireland, near Callen, November ii, 1832. His parents, Patrick 
and Alice (Brophy; .Mulroney, are also natives of County Kil- 
kenny. The father was a farmer by occupation and on coming to 
America left his wife in Williamsburg, New York, while he went 
to Pennsylvania, prospecting for a favorable location. While 
there, however, he passed away at the age of sixty years. His 
widow remained in New York until her children were partly 
grown, after which she came to the middle west and died in 
Emmettsburg, Iowa, at an advanced age. Both were members 
of the Catholic church. In their family were eleven children, 
seven sons and four daughters, as follows : William, Bridget, 
Mary, Edward, Patrick, Thomas, John M., Catherine, Kieran, 
Joseph and Margaret. 

John Martin Mulroney spent his early youth in Williamsburg, 
New York, and attended school there. He was afterward at 
Wolcotte and New Haven, Connecticut, and worked in the forests, 
making ties for the Naugatuck Railroad. On removing westward 
to W^isconsin he settled near Mineral Point and engaged in haul- 
ing- lead to Galena, Illinois. While in Galena he and his cousin. 
T. H. Tobin, grubstaked a claim for a couple of men, who for it 
gave them an interest in their flatboat on the Mississippi river. 
Mr. Mulroney then went up the river to cut cedar posts and 
pickets which he sold in Dubuque, Iowa. The ne.xt spring he 
and his brother Edward and Mr. Tobin made a trip to California 
by way of the Nicaragua route. This was in 1850. From Nicara- 
gua they traveled partly on foot, partly on mules and partly by 
steamer to their destination. .After arriving in San l->ancisco 
they hired out to a farmer who had l)een an old sea captain, to 
help him cut his barley, for which they received nine dollars per 
day. They worked for him for about six weeks and then wci\t to 
the gold mines on the east branch of the north fork of the 
Feather river. At that time the territory in which they were lo- 
cated had not yet been sui)divi(led into counties and lynch rule 
was the law of the land. As history shows it proved a good law, 
as it prevented many depredations, compelled the u.se of good 
language and the display of respect for one another and their 
rights. Then, too, when justice had to be administered it was 
done summarilv and the culprit was placed where he could harm 
no one again. During the first three years Mr. Mulroney spent 



174 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

in the mountains he did not see a white woman nor a white child, 
nor a dead person, that had died a natural death. In the Ameri- 
can valley seven miles away lived a Mr. Stark with his family, 
who removed there from Missouri. His eldest daughter, about 
fifteen years of age, was known by all the men of that district as 
Sister Betsey and if anyone said a word about her it was at the 
peril of his life, such was the chivalry toward and respect paid 
to the women of the west in that early day. When Mr. Mul- 
roney and his comrades went to California they carried their 
tools and supplies on their backs but the next year a pack train 
was started and the charge of ten cents per pound was made 
for packing. Their diet consisted of pork. Chili beans and Chili 
flour twenty-one times a week! Because of that, scurvy broke 
out among them but the next year they managed to get potatoes 
and were advised to eat them raw, which they did. This sup- 
plied a dietary need and from that time on the men got along 
nicel}^ At length they became owners of a pack train and while 
engaged in packing for some time they also continued to work 
their gold mine and did very well in their business. In 1857 Mr. 
Mulroney and Mr. Tobin came to Iowa, settling in Palo Alto 
county, and upon its organizati(jn in the fall of 1838 Mr. Mul- 
roney was elected county treasurer and recorder, the two offices 
being at that time connected. He served altogether for eight 
years and then retired. While there he was also postmaster of 
Soda Bar and was justice of the peace. \\ hilc filling the latter 
position he performed the marriage ceremony for the first couple 
ever married in that county. 

When the Indians broke out in open warfare in Jackson and 
New Ulm, Minnesota, about this time, and massacred a number 
of white settlers, Mr. Mulroney, his brother and a Mr. Tobin 
took three horses and went as far as Estherville, Iowa. There 
they were joined by a Mr. Ridley, who took one of their horses 
and they proceeded to the seat of trouble to assist the white men. 
When they arrived at their destination, however, the soldiers 
had arrived from Spirit Lake before them and the trouble was 
over. They met wagons on the way toward the south which were 
filled with wounded and they also met a company of volunteers 
of about thirty men on the way to Jackson from Fort Dodge, 
Iowa, and on their way back notified them that the trouble had 
passed. These Indians were the last seen in this state except 
those which have become civilized. Mr. Mulroney then re- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 175 

Uirned home and although he had been too late to be of any 
actual help, his desire to help must be just as highly estimated 
as if he had been of actual service. 

In 1868 Mr. Muhoney came to Fort Dodge and traded a large 
number of cattle for an interest in a general store. He was thus 
engaged in merchandising in this city for thirty years or until 
he retired, occupying a prominent place as a leading and pro- 
gressive merchant of the cil\. W ith its upbuilding he was iden- 
tified almost from the beginning and his labors have ccinstituted 
an important clement in the work of ])ublic progress. He and 
si.x others, namely: John V. Duncombe, A. McBane, E. E. Prus- 
sia, a ]Mr. Grant, (ieorge R. Pearson, and G. W. Hassett built 
the -Minneapolis & St. Louis Rai'road from Fort Dodge, then 
called the h'ort Dodge & h'ort Ridgley Railroad, construct- 
ing about forty miles of that line and operating the cars as 
far as Humboldt. They afterward sold the line to the Min- 
neapolis & St. Louis Compan\- but in coniiection with .\lr. l"ur- 
long and Mr. London graded the road fi-om l'"ort Dodge t(j Cla- 
rion. His labors have always been of a character that has con- 
tributed to public progress and improvement. Aside from com- 
mercial and industrial activity he became identified with financial 
interests and is now the vice president of the hirst Xational 
I^>ank of Fort Dodge. 

In 1858 Mr. Mulroney was married to Miss Jane Evans, a 
daughter of Jeremiah and Hannah (Onimby) Evans. They be- 
came the parents of eight children: :Mary. the wife of Edmund 
O'Connell, of Bloomington, Illinois : Josephine, deceased; Kieran ; 
William, of h'ort Dodge: Joseph R. and Dr. Charles H., also resi- 
dents of Fort Dodge; Edward C. of Missoula, Montana, where 
he is practicing law; and Lewis .\.. making his home in Fort 
Dodge. She and her husband were the first couple married in 
Humboldt county and she passed away in 1882 at the age of 
thirty-eight years. In 18X4 Mr. Muboney married again, his 
second union being with Hannah I'.urns, a daughter of Patrick 
Burns. There were three chihlren born of that marriage, of 
whom two are now living, Frank and Robert E., of Fort Dodge, 
both of whom are students in the University of Iowa, at Iowa 
City. The daughter Anna died when she was hut a year old. 
Mr. and Mrs. Mulroney are members of the .Sacred Heart Catholic 
church of Fort Dodge, Iowa. 



176 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

In politics Mr. Aliilroney has always l)een a democrat but has 
never been an active politician, although he has held several local 
positions. He has preferred to concentrate his time and energies 
upon his private business affairs which have been capably man- 
aged and have brought to him a measure of success which is 
gratifying. His business methods have always been such as would 
bear the closest investigation and scrutin\- and he has enjoyed 
in large measure the trust and good-will of the puldic. 



CHARLES B. HEPLER. 

Architecture in its broad aspect of municipal building carried 
on along artistic lines, has for many years occupied the atten- 
tion of Charles B. Hepler, to whose energy and skill in this 
profession Fort Dodge owes a great deal of her civic beauty. 
Mr. Hepler is a native of Philadelphia, in which city his birth 
occurred on Noveniber 6, 1850. His jjarents were Samuel and 
Christina (Boyd) Hepler, both natives of Pennsylvania. The 
father was born in Philadelphia and kept the tollgate at Perkio- 
menville, Montgomery county, for over fifty years and spent all 
his life in that city. His death occurred there and there his wife 
also passed away. Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Hepler were the parents 
of two children: Charles B., the subject of this sketch; and Kate, 
now Mrs. Freed, residing in Atlantic City. 

Charles Hepler received his early education in the public schools 
of Philadelphia. He pursued the usual course of study until he 
was twelve years of age. At that time, influenced by the rumors 
of wealth and adventure to be found in the west, he ran away 
from home and came to Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he immedi- 
ately obtained a position in the office of Fred FVost, one of the 
leading architects in Fort Dodge. Thus it was that the future 
career of Mr. Hepler was determined, lie early gained a knowl- 
edge of the principles of architecture and showed a decided talent 
in this line. He remained with his original employer, Fred Frost, 
until 1878, when he became associated in business with a Mr. 
Brown for about five years and so continued until he established 
himself in business independently in b'ort Dodge and built up 
through many years of active life a flourishing and successful 
business. He planned, designed and erected a great many of the 



HISTORY OF WlilSSTER COL'NTY 177 

finest dwellings in Fort Dodge and gained such an eminent repu- 
tation that when the government l)ui!ding was under considera- 
tion he was appointed inspector. The present magnificent struc- 
ture is evidence of his ability and efficiency along this line. It 
is one of the finest government buildings in the state of Iowa 
and architecturally perfect in every detail. Mr. Ilepler also acted 
as inspector of the county courthouse. He remained in l*"ort 
Dodge, becoming more prominent and successful with every 
year of his life in this city, until 1907 when he went to Sioux City 
and accepted a position with Curtis Brothers, architects and 
manufacturers, and remained in that capacity for three years. 
He is now residing at Sioux Falls, South Dakota, being e.xpert 
in the branch house of the Farley-Letcher Company. The home 
office of this company is in Dubuque. Iowa, and during the period 
of Mr. Kepler's connection with their affairs their growing busi- 
ness reflected credit upon his ability and professional attainment. 
In July, 1871, 'Sir. Heplcr w.is united in marriage to Mary 
(Wright) Jenkins, a daughter of William Henry and I'.liza 
(Chase) Wright. Mrs. Heplcr"s father was born in Ohio and her 
grandfather in Virginia, wiiile her mother was a native of Xew 
York. They were all affiliated with the Quaker religion, and 
during the years immediately preceding the Civil war were 
obliged to move to Ohio in order to avoid living in a slave state. 
They were stanch abolitionists by personal conviction and also 
on account of their religious principles. The father later went to 
Pikes Peak in the days of the Colorado mining boom and became 
successful as a miner and property owner in that sectmn. lie 
eventually removed to California and became a substantial and 
representative citizen of Sacramento. He was elected sheriff of 
the county and was the first man to bold that office, .\ftcr five 
years of residence in California .Mr. Wright came to Iowa and 
located in West Liberty. Here he engaged in business with 
his brother as proprietor of a general store, with which he was 
connected for one year. He later sold his interest to his brotiier 
and bought a farm near West Liberty, which he improved and 
cultivated until his wife died in i86r. In that year Mr. W^right 
removed to Cedar Falls and accepted a position with the Wells 
Fargo Express Company as messenger. This was long before 
the days of railroads and Mr. Wright's duties consisted of driving 
a stage between Cedar Falls and Dubuque and between Cedar 
Falls and Sioux City. He held this position until 1868 when he 



178 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

went in the railroad contracting business in partnersiiip witii a 
Mr. London. They were employed by the Illinois Central Rail- 
road to grade their tracks in the vicinity of Fort Dodge. Mr. 
AWight's actixities extended tive miles east and five miles west 
of the city, and the thorough and capable work which he did 
won him high recognition. He lived in Webster county for some 
time and became prominent in county politics. He was elected 
sheriff of that county and served as marshal for a number of 
years. He was also identified with various other ])ul)Iic positions 
and was one of the representative men of this district. He went 
to the Black Hills in South Dakota during the first days of the 
discovery of ore in that region and took up a claim there. He 
became well known as a publisher and editor. He operated and 
managed the leading journal in Ra])id City and was later con- 
nected with the Deadwood Times for fifteen or twenty }ears. 
His health finally failed and after a period of invalidity he was 
stricken with ])ncumonia and dietl at Lead City. South Dakota, 
in November. i88j. Mr. Wright's activities in \arious fields of 
endeavor always met with a gratifying degree of success. He 
became well known and prominent wherever he lived and his 
death removed from the state of South Dakota one of the infiucn- 
tial forces in its development.- 

To Mr. and Mrs. Charles Hepler were born four children: Grace 
\\'., who married C. H. Smith, a proiuinent politician of h'ort 
Dodge and well known for his activities in the city council under 
the commission form of government : .\nna W.. the wife of James 
W. Leslie, of Seattle. ANashington ; Carl R.. who is now man- 
aging the Magic and Princess theaters in F'ort Dodge; and Fred 
Chase, who passed away in September. 1880. 

Previous to her marriage with our subject Mrs. Hepler had 
been the wife of Andrew Jenkins, whom she married in August, 
1868. He was prominent in the livery business in Fort Dodge 
at one time and was successful later as an employe of a 
Milwaukee bridge company, which was spanning the Rock Rapids 
with a modernly constructed bridge. When that work was com- 
pleted they commissioned Mr. Jenkins to drive to Sibley, Iowa, 
for payment. The journey was twelve miles long and had to be 
made over unimproved roads and in the dead of winter. A ter- 
rible blizzard overtook the party and Mr. Jenkins was frozen to 
death. By her former marriage Mrs. Hepler became the mother 
of two children: Albert, who resides in Fort Dodge, where he 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 179 

follows the trade of carpentering; and Markoe, who is an engi- 
neer for the Illinois Central Railroad with residence at Freeport, 
Illinois. 

Although Mr. Hepler's business keeps him a great part <if the 
time in Sioux Falls, he is a loyal citizen of Fort Dodge and main- 
tains his residence in this city. He has erected a beautiful home 
at 1234 Si.xth avenue, south, which is one of the most comfortable 
and commodious in the city. Mr. and Mrs. Hepler are well known 
in social circles and are among the prominent and popular resi- 
dents of Fort Dodge. Mrs. Hepler is a charming and hospitable 
woman with a remarkable degree of culture and literary attain- 
ment. She is interested in history and is known as an authority 
upon the contlitions of early jMoneer settlement in the middle 
west. 

Politicall) r^Ir. Hepler keeps himself indepentlent of lines and 
parties. He is a firm believer in indixidual right of judgment 
and always votes for the man regardless of his affiliations. Mrs. 
Hepler is a member of the Society of Friends, which was the 
religion of her father and forefathers. Mr. Hepler does not affil- 
iate with any particular form of l)clief. He molds his life ac- 
cording to principles of high-minded honor and integrity and 
is well known in Fort Dodge as a man of exemplary character. 
In all the lines of his activity he is well and favorably known 
by reason of his professional attainment and the high and intelli- 
gent quality of his citizenship. 



FR.^NCIS FRANKLIN LUTZ. 

Francis F. Lutz follows the trade of tiling in Duncombe, Iowa, 
and also conducts a pool hall in that city. His career has come to 
final success after a long period of vicissitudes and the prosperity 
which he has attained is a credit to his native sagacity and indus- 
irv. Ho was Ixjrn in .\ew ^'ork city. December 25. 1858, and was 
left an orphan when only four years of age, being too young to re- 
member even the names of his parents. He was put in the 
Soldiers' Home in his native city and after a slmrt time was 
adopted by George Gilmore, of Brovvnstown, Illinois, who for live 
years reared and educated his charge. .\t the end of that time 
Mr. Lutz was taken from his guardian by the Illinois .-om.k <„, 



180 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

account of the latter's cruelty. He then entered the home of 
Frank Steinhowe, a farmer and brewer of Vandalia, lUinois, and 
here he remained for fourteen years. He was seized with yellow 
fever and was ordered to another climate, going eventually to the 
Black hills of South Dakota. Here he learned ditching and when 
he had fully recovered his health went to Clinton, Illinois, where 
he resided for eight years, following railroading the greater por- 
tion of the time. Subsequently in 1895. he came to Duncombe, 
where he worked at his trade of tiling, in which he has been suc- 
cessful in all for twenty-five years. In the last year he has laid 
eight hundred rods of tile upon the farms around Duncombe and 
expects to continue this business after the harvest of 191 2. In 1905 
he opened a pool hall in the city in which he resides and this he has 
since conducted successfully. 

On January 10, 1886, Mr, Lutz was united in marriage to Miss 
Anna G. Brown, a daughter of Miles and Mary Etta Brown, natives 
of Harristown, Illinois. Mr. and Mrs. Lutz became the parents 
of fifteen children, of whom the following are deceased, Roy, 
Minnie Belle, Walter E.. Lilly and Lincoln. Those who sur- 
vive are, .\rthur, Mary. luirl, Printhia, Bea, Libby, Anna Rose, 
Miles, Robert and Franklin. 

In his political views Mr. Lutz is republican and has served as 
marshal of Duncombe for five years. He belongs to the Methodist 
church, and is a member of the local lodge of Modern Woodmen of 
America. lie has a comfortable home in the city where he has 
resided for seventeen years, gaining the respect and esteem of his 
friends by reason of a life which has been made successful through 
his own efforts and by reason of straightforward principles which 
ha\e been retained through unusual hardships. 



THOMAS J. HALLIGAN. 

Thomas J. Halligan, who is cashier of the Bank of Moorland, 
where he is also engaged in buying live stock, is one of the fore- 
most citizens of Fulton township, where he holds the title to 
three hundred and thirty-seven acres of land. A member of one 
of Webster county's pioneer families, he was born in Elkhorn 
township, on the 28th of March, 1881. He is a son of Anthony 
and Anna (Trainor) Halligan, the former a native of Wiscon- 



HISTORY OF WEI'.STRR COL'XTY 181 

sin and the latter of Ireland. The father reninved to Iowa about 
i860 with his parents, who located in the vicinity of Dubuque, 
and there resided for many years. In 1872. he drove across the 
Iowa prairies to \\'ebster county and began farming for himself 
as a renter. .\i the expiration of seven years he had accumu- 
lated sufficient nione\- to enable him to buy land and he pur- 
chased a hundred and si.xty acres in I-"ikhorn township. Here he 
continued his agricultural pursuits with more than an average 
degree of success, adding to his holdings as the years jjassed until 
he held title to fi\e hundred acres. The further improvement and 
cttltivation of his land engaged his attention until 1897. when he 
left the farm and came to Moorland. He here engaged in stock- 
buying for about five years, but at the end of that time moved on 
a farm in Fulton township, where he is now living retired. 1 he 
mother is deceased, having passed away in 1881. 

The son of an agriculturist and born on a farm, the boyhood 
and youth of Thomas J. Halligan were passed very much as 
those of other lads who are reared in rural districts. At the 
usual age he began his education in the district schools, con- 
tinuing his course of study in Tobin College at Fort Dodge. After 
leaving school he returned home and together with his four 
brothers organized and established a private bank known as the 
Bank of Moorland. They all assist in the operation of the enter- 
prise, which is one of the thriving financial institutions of the 
county. In connection with his duties as cashier Mr. llaliigan 
engages in buying stock and directs the cultivation of his tme 
homestead. It comprises a hundred and seventy-seven acres of 
land and is located just outside the corporate limits of Moor- 
land. He takes great pride in his farm, which is one of the best 
improved and most attractive properties in this vicinity. He 
also holds the title to a quarter section of land located four miles 
from Moorland, which he rents out. His time and energies have 
always been intelligently expended and despite the fact that he 
has not attained the age of thirty-two years, yet he is re- 
garded as one of the foremost business men and most capable 
agriculturists in the township. 

In OctobeV, 1906. Mr. Halligan was married to Miss Rose A. 
Byrne, a daughter of Michael \V. and .Anna (Andrews) Hyrnc. 
natives of Ireland. Three children were born of this marriage, 
as follows: Mary Fern, who is in her sixth year: Lawrence P.. 
who is in his fifth year; and one. who died in infancy. Mrs. 



182 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Halligan passed away on the loth of Marcli, 1912, after a brief 
illness. 

In matters of religious faith Mr. Halligan is a Roman Cath- 
olic and his wife was also a communicant of that church. In poli- 
tics he is a democrat and stanchly supports the men and meas- 
ures of that party- He has served as a member of the town 
council and at the present time is treasurer of both the town board 
and school board. Mr. Halligan takes an active interest in all 
local industries, particularly those affecting the agricultural sec- 
tions and is one of the stockholders of the Coo])erative Cream- 
ery Compan}' of Des Moines. He is a young man of tireless 
energy, determination of purpose and laudable ambition, which 
commendable qualities are rapidly leading him on to the goal 
of achievement and will ultimately rank him high in the list of 
the county's representative citizens. 



CHRIS CHRISTENSEN. 

Chris Christensen is manager of the Badger branch of the lum- 
ber l:)usiness conducted l)y j. H. Oueal & Company, ha\ing risen 
to this responsible position in a short time by hard work, energy 
and persistent attention to the interests of his employers. .Since 
191 1 he has operated a restaurant in the same city and is meet- 
ing with his usual success in this field of activity. He was born 
in Denmark, Januar\- 8, 1876. and is a son of Lars and Johanna 
(Jensen) Christensen. The father was a stonecutter and worked 
at his trade in Denmark, where his death occurred in May, 1908. 
His wife is still living in her native land. 

Chris Christensen was reared at home and was educated in 
the public schools of Denmark. At the age of si.xteen he emi- 
grated to America, locating in Ringstead, Iowa, in 1892. He ob- 
tained employment as a farm hand and gained his livelihood by 
this work for several years. He was thrifty and ambitious and 
saved his money so that he was soon able to rent a farm near 
Ringsted, which he operated and improved for two years. He 
then moved into the village and became engaged in the draying 
business which after a year he abandoned in order to work in a 
luml)eryard in a humble position. After four months' service 
in this capacity his employers sent him to Lone Rock in order 



HISTORY OF W ELISTER COLXTV 183 

to take charge of a yard operated by J. H. Oueal & Company. 
Here he did such efficient and practical work that after four 
years he was transferred to Badger, where he has since been 
general manager of the brancli house. In 191 1 Mr. I hristensen 
added to his activities liy starting a restaurant whicli he still 
conducts. 

On March 16, 1898, Chris Ciiristensen was united in marriage 
to Miss Mary Jepson. a daughter of Nels and Anna C. Nissen Jep- 
son, natives of Denmark. To Mr. and !\Irs. Christensen have 
been born three children, Thora, .\lbert and Clarence, aged re- 
spectively twelve, ten and five years. 

Mr. Christensen owns the buikling in which lie conducts his 
business and the property on wliich it stands and is one of tiio 
progressive and enterprising citizens of Badger. He belongs to 
the Improved Order of Red Men and to the Modern Woodmen of 
America, affiliating also with the Danish Brotherhood. He is 
a believer in the Lutheran religion. In liis political views he is 
a consistent republican and has served as town clerk for several 
years and also did able work as school director. He is one of the 
promising young business men of Badger, active in promoting his 
own success but at the same time mindful of his obligations as 
a citizen. He has made the two business enterprises with which 
he is connected successful by always seizing any favorable oppor- 
tunit)^ for expansion and by adhering faithfully to high standards 
of personal and commercial honor. 



L. VERXE MILI.1:R. 



L. Verne Miller, assistant cashier of tiie Savings Hank at Dnn- 
combe, is one of Iowa's native sons, his birth having occurreil in 
Hamilton county on the iStli of .\ugust. IcSSj. His parents are 
John and Amelia (Woodward) Miller, the former a native of Iowa 
and the latter of the state of Xew \ork. John Miller was only a 
boy when he located in Hamilton county with his parents. There 
he was reared to manhood and when old enough to begin work- 
ing, turiu'd his attention to agricultural pursuits, and by reason of 
his diligence and thrift subsequently ac(|uired a farm of his own. 
The cidtivation and improxcmenl of his land engaged his undi- 



184 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

vided attention until 1910, when he retired to Webster City, where 
he and his wife are still residing. 

The first twenty years in the life of L. Verne Miller were 
passed under the parental roof, his time being largely devoted to 
the acquirement of an education. Upon terminating his school 
days he engaged in teaching, being identified with this profes- 
sion for six years. He next accepted a position as relief clerk 
in the postoiifice at \\'ebster City, following which he became 
cashier for the Illinois Central Railroad Company. He served 
in the latter capacity until May 2, 191 1. when he resigned to 
accept the position of bookkeeper in the Duncom])e Savings 
Bank. In the fall of the same year he was promoted to the office 
of assistant cashier, his services in this connection having proven 
to be highly acceptable. Mr. Miller is a young man of genial 
disposition and accommodating maimer and by reason of his 
unfailing courtesy has become very popular with the patrons 
of the bank. 

Fraternally he is affiliated with Elmo Lodge. No. 63, I. O. O. 
F., of Webster City. He takes an active interest in local politics, 
giving his support to the republican party and is treasurer of 
the school board. General efificiency. fidelity to duty and unques- 
tionable integrity are the most striking characteristics of this 
young man, who enjoys the esteem and respect of a large circle 
of Duncombe's citizens. 



.\RTHUR L. RICHARDS. 

Arthur L. Richards has been a resident of Vincent since 1892 and has 
been engaged in various important business enterprises in the village 
since that time. He is one of the well known, progressive and enter- 
prising business men of the section and his activities which are al- 
ways of a constructive kind, have been factors in local development. 
He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1854, a son of Edwin 
C. and I hilena (Shaw) Richards, natives of Massachussetts. His 
father was a musician and followed this line of occupation for almost 
fortv years. When he came to Iowa he located in Chapin, Franklin 
county, in 1875. ^""^^ there taught a large music class. He also pur- 
chased land and operated his farm until his death, which occurred 
in 1886. His wife passed away in 1883. 




MRS. ADDA .1. lUCIIAIiDS 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 187 

Arthur L. Richards was reared and educated in Ohio. When he laid 
aside liis books at the age of sixteen he came to Iowa with his par- 
ents and after a short time began farming, cultivating the soil until 
he was twenty-five years of age. Subsequently, in 1892, he came to 
\'incent and in partnership with Anderson Brothers bought an eleva- 
tor, of which lie had charge for a number of years. He has recently 
been engaged in handling stock and makes frequent trips to Canada 
to buy high-grade animals. He gives his allegiance to the repub- 
lican party and for eleven years was postmaster of \'incent. 

On August 2.2, 1872, Mr. Richards was united in marriage to Miss 
Ada J. Riddle, a daughter of T. C. and Sarah (Colt) Riddle, the 
former a native of New- York and the latter of Niagara Falls. Her 
mother was born on the farm, upon which one end of the suspension 
bridge over the Niagara river was afterward built. For some time 
her father operated a small boat on the Erie canal and continued in 
this line of activity until 1857, when he came with his family to Iowa 
and located at Grinnell. From there he went to Franklin county, 
where he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land, which he 
improved and developed until his death on February 24. 1876. His 
wife is still living in the eighty-sixth year of her age and makes her 
home with the subject of tiiis review. Mr. and Mrs. Richards have 
four children : Edwin C, who is engaged as a tinner and plumber at 
Waverly, and who married Miss Maude Burbank: Sarah I., the wife 
of John Arnold, a real-estate dealer in Fort Meade, Florida; Alberta 
M., who married Frank Arnold, agent tor the Chicago & Great 
Western Railroad at Thornton; and Clarence A., who is attending the 
Fort Dodge business college, and who is also assistant ix)stmaster of 
Vincent. Mrs. Richards is one of the prominent and well known 
women of the village in which she resides and is not only an ex- 
emplary wife and moiiier but a remarkably able business woman. 
She is a stockholder in the Vincent Savings Bank and in the Vincent 
Telephone Company and also for some years assisted her husband in 
the operation of a hotel barljershop and livery business. On .\ugust 
22, 191 1, she was appointed postmistress of Vincent and has since 
served in that capacity, discharging her duties ably and conscien- 
tiously. 

Mr. Richards is well known in local fraternal circles, holding mem- 
bership in the Modern W^oodmen of America, the Independent Order 
of Odd 1-ellows and the Masonic order, while his wife holds member- 
ship in the Order of the Eastern Star. He sened for eleven years as 
postmaster and was also the town marshal for several years. He and 
Vol. n— 1 1 



188 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

his family belong to the Methodist church. Mr. and Mrs. Richards 
own much valuable property in Vincent, including several fine business 
lots and the postoffice building. They ha\e also a three hundred acre 
farm in Canada and are interested in various local enterprises, all of 
which are important and remunerative. They are among the most 
prominent and highly respected citizens of Vincent, where both are 
well known in business and social circles. In spirit and interests they 
are representative of the highest standards and their lives and activ- 
ities have been useful and valuable in various directions. 



CHARLES VICTOR LUXDBERG. 

Charles Victor Lundberg is a worthy representative of tlie 
mercantile interests of Dayton, where he has won the success that 
invariably rewards honorable business methods when followed 
with diligence and perseverance. He was born in Andover, 
Henry county, Illinois, on the 4th of December, i860, and is a 
son of Jonas P. and Johanna Matilda (Price) Lundberg. The 
parents were both natives of Sweden, and there they were mar- 
ried. When Jonas P. Lundberg was a little lad of five years his 
mother died and he was reared by his grandmother until he was 
deemed old enough to learn a trade. At the age of eight he 
entered the service of a local tailor, with whom he remained until 
he was grown. After the expiration of his period of service he 
turned his attention to agricultural pursuits and w'ent to work 
for a farmer at eighteen dollars per year and his clothing. In 
accordance witii the requirements of the country two years of his 
early manhood were spent in the Swedish army, following which 
he again engaged in farming. The hard work and meager wages 
and apparent hopelessness of advancement, served to make him 
most discontented with his lot and in 1852 he emigrated witii wife 
and family to the United States. Upon his arrival in this country 
he located at Andover, Illinois, where for some years thereafter 
he w^orked as a laborer. By reason of thrift he accumulated 
sufficient means to enable him to engage in farming, and he tlien 
rented a place which he operated until 1875. In the spring of 
that year he came to Webster county, and rented a farm in Day- 
ton township. The next year he removed to Grant township, 
Boone county, and purchased one hundred and twenty acres of 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUXTV i89 

land, which he cultivated during the remainder of his active life. 
There he passed away on March 12, 1894, at the age of seventy- 
seven, his natal year having been 1817. The mother is still liv- 
ing and continues to make her home on the old farm in Boone 
county. The family of Mr. and Mrs. Lundberg numbered thir- 
teen, as follows: John A. and Jonas A., both deceased; Charles 
Victor, our subject; Gustaf L., a farmer of Clay townshii), tliis 
county; Andrew ^\'., deceased; Frank O., who is fanning in 
Cooper township, Webster county; Christine S.. the wife of Gus 
Hemstrom, a farmer of Bertraml. Nebraska : Peter O. and Han- 
nah, both deceased ; Theodore L., who is a farmer of Grant town- 
ship; Edwin, who is a resident of Riverside, California; Emily, 
who is at home with her motlier ; and Gilbert, who died in infancy. 
The family always attendetl tlie Swedish Lutheran church, of 
which the father was a member while tlie mother is still affiliated 
with this organization. 

The first fifteen years in the life of Charles Victor Lundberg 
were passed in his native state, to whose district schools he is 
indebted for his education. After laying aside his text-books he 
assisted his father with the work of. the farm until he was nine- 
teen, when he started out to earn his own living. He returned 
to Illinois, where he worked as a farm hand for a year, and then 
came back to Dayton and entered the employ of the Chicago & 
Northwestern Railroad as a construction hand. During the suc- 
ceeding two years he followed the carpenter's trade in Dayton, 
but at the expiration of that period he accepted a position as clerk 
in the store of John Lundeen for two and one-half years. 

In 1886 he entered upon a clerkship with Samuel Burnquist. Sr. 
Mr. Lundberg continued to retain his position until the death 
of Mr. Burnquist in 1895. He then liecamc associated with J. .\. 
Burnquist, a brother of his former employer, and together they 
purchased the stock from the heirs. Five years later. Mr. Burn- 
quist sold his interest in the business to his nephew, Samuel 
Burnquist, Jr., who is still in partnership with Mr. Lundberg. 
Their establishment is one of the oldest and most successful 
commercial enterprises in the town, and is favored with an ex- 
cellent patronage. The store is operated under the name of i'.urn- 
quist & Lundberg and is conducted in accordance with a policy 
that has won them the confidence of the entire community. They 
carry a large and varied assortment of general merchandise, which 
they ofTer at reasonable prices, and as their goods are always 



190 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

found to be exactly as represented they are enjoying a gratifying 
trade. Mr. Lundberg has prospered in his undertakings and 
in addition to his interest in the store is a large stockholder in the 
First National Bank of Dayton, of which he is president. 

Mr. Lundberg ^as married on the i8th of October, 1893, to 
Miss Emma M. Peterson, a daughter of Nels and Christine Peter- 
son, natives of Sweden. The father emigrated to the United 
States in his early manhood and located in Henry county, Illi- 
nois, and there for several years he farmed as a renter. Later 
he came to Iowa, purchasing eighty acres of land in Webster 
county, and as his circumstances warranted he increased his hold- 
ings until they aggregated four hundred acres. F'or many years 
he industriously applied himself to the further improvement and 
cultivation of his land until he abandoned active farm work and 
removed to Dayton, where he passed away in November, 1906. 
Mr. Peterson was married twice, his second union being with 
Mrs. Caroline Linderholni of Dayton. Three children have been 
born to Mr. and Mrs. Lundberg, as follows: Byron Irwin, who 
graduated from the Dayton high school with the class of 191 1, 
living at home; Frances Irene, who is attending high school; 
and Esta Mildred, who is going to the kindergarten. 

The political support of Mr. Lundberg is accorded to the re- 
publican party. He represented his ward in the town council 
for six years and since September. 1903. has I)een treasurer of 
the local school board. He is one of the intluential and prominent 
citizens of the town, where his long and successful connection 
with the various business interests has proven liim to I)e a man 
of marked capability. His career has not been distinguished by 
any extraordinary or spectacular acliievcnicnt> Init it lias been 
characterized by steady progress and substantial development, 
giving assurance of permanence and stability. 



THOMAS K. PETER.SOX. 

Thomas K. Peterson is a native of Norway but has l)een in 
America since he was eight years of age. He was a ])oy of fourteen 
when he came to Badger township, where he is now numbered 
among the well known and representative citizens. During the 
period of his residence here he has been identified with various busi- 



HISTORY OF WEHSTER COUNTY 191 

ness enterprises and has held his present position as cashier of tlie 
Badger Savings Bank since 1894. proving himself during that time 
an able and systematic financier and an honest, upright and straight- 
forward man. Mr. Peterson was born in Norway, August 6, 1868, 
and is a son of Knud and Christina (Ostius) Peterson, natives of 
that country. The father farmed in Norway until 1876, when he 
came to the United States, settling in Champaign county, Illinois, 
where he purchased land. He bought eighty acres and moved upon 
his property, wliich he improved and operated until the spring of 
1882, when he disposed of his farm and came to Webster county. 
Iowa, where he bought one hundred and sixty acres in Badger 
township. This land is now included in the corporation limits of 
the town of Badger and upon it the father of our subject carried on 
agricultural pursuits until his death, which occurred in March, 1892. 
His wife survived him until November, 1898. 

Thomas Peterson was eight years of age when he came to America 
with his parents. He completed an education begun in Norway in 
the public schools of Champaign county, Illinois, and in Badger 
township, Webster county, finishing his studies at Highland Park- 
College in Des Moines. When he had completed his course he 
returned to Badger and accepted a position as clerk in a general 
store belonging to H. P. Hanson and after a year's activity in this 
capacity purchased a half-interest in the enteqirise. For two years 
he continued this identification, after which he accepted his present 
position as cashier in the Badger Savings Bank. In that capacity 
he has acted with increasing success since 1894 and he is also a 
stockholder and director in the institution. The bank is the only 
one in the village of Badger. It was organizetl on June 8, 1889, 
under the name of the Bank of Badger, which title was later 
changed to the State Bank of P.adger. In 1894 it was reorganized 
under the name of the Badger Savings Bank with a capital stock 
of ten thousand dollars, which in 191 1 was increased to twenty- 
five thousand dollars. Its officers at the i)resent time are: C. W. 
Maher, president; C. Knudson. vice president; and T. K. Peter 
son, cashier. Mr. Peterson has been a valuable addition to the 
institution with which he is connected, i^v he understands bank- 
ing thoroughly, is careful and conservative but at the same time 
progressive, and his individual success has been n factor in the 
prosperity of the bank. 

In June, 1898, Mr. Peterson was united in marriage to Miss .Xde- 
\ine Knudson, a daughter of Christopher and Anna C\rcnt) 



192 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Knudson, natives of Norway. Mr. and Mrs. Peterson have four 
children, Kenneth C, Clara A., Gladys P., and Lloyd O., aged 
respectively twelve, eleven, nine and six j^ears. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Peterson is a firm republican and 
has been active in local affairs since he took up his residence in 
Badger. He was the first mayor of the village, in which capacity 
he is now serving, and for years filled the office of secretary of the 
school board, laeing at the present time treasurer of that organiza- 
tion. He belongs to the Lutheran church. That he has been 
successful in business and judicious in his in\estments is evidenced 
by the fact that he now owns his father's home place of one hundred 
and sixty acres on section 15, Badger township, and a fine dwelling 
in the village, surrounded by twelve acres of land. He is also the 
proprietor of two hundred and forty acres in Clay township and 
is managing his affairs and promoting his success by reason of his 
qualities of energy, diligence and honesty, characteristics which the 
United States welcomes so eagerly in its adopted citizens. 



JOHN HANRAHAX. 



John Hanrahan. who has been identified with various business 
interests in Clare and Webster counties and other points, was 
born in Ireland, in December, 1850. He is a son of John and 
Bridget (Morgan) Hanrahan, also natives of the Emerald isle. 
The family emigrated to the United States in 1864, first locating 
in Pennsylvania. From there they removed to Dliljuque, Iowa, 
and after fi\e or six years residence in the latter place came to 
Webster county. Here the father made iiis home with his chil- 
dren until his death, which occurred in iXcj;. Tiie motlier passed 
away in 1884. 

John Hanrahan, who was a youth of fourteen years when he 
accompanied his parents to America, obtained his education in 
his native land. After the famih- located in Dul)U(iue lie went 
to work on the railroad. l)ut was later emplox'ccl on a steamer 
on the Mississippi. Together with a brother he subsecpiently 
engaged in railroad contracting for five years, meeting with a 
good measure of success. He and his brothers next purchased 
four hundred and forty acres of land in Jackson townsJiip. this 
county, and turned their attention to agricultiu-al pursuits. This 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 193 

farm is now one of the valuable properties of Webster county 
and is in the possession of the family of one of the Hanrahan 
brothers. After nine years of cooperative farming, Mr. Hanra- 
han disposed of his interest in the place and coming to Clare 
went into the hotel business. He followed this occupation for 
seven years, and then engaged in the saloon business. The lat- 
ter enterprise engaged his attention for fifteen years, at the e.K- 
piration of which time he sold out and opened a pool room. He 
is still conducting the latter place and in connection with it sells 
soft drinks and also handles cigars. Mr. Hanrahan has acquired 
extensive realty interests, owning farms in South Dakota, Canada 
and Texas, and also his business property, a fine residence and 
several residence lots in Clare. 

In April, 1883, Mr. Hanrahan was married to Miss Mary Mor- 
gan, a daughter of Patrick and Mary ( McXamara) Morgan, na- 
tives of Ireland. Mr. and Mrs. Hanrahan have five children: 
Morgan J., who is a practicing attorney of Winnipeg, Canada; 
Odessa M., a stenographer in Des Moines; Leo M. and Char- 
lotte M., who are at honic ; and James, who passed away in 
1902. 

The family are communicants of the Roman Catholic church, 
and fraternally Mr. Hanrahan is affiliated with the Knights of 
Columbus of Fort Dodge. He is a democrat in politics and under 
Cleveland's administration served for four years as postmaster. 
He has served on the town council and has also discharged the 
duties of assessor in Jackson township, and has filled the office 
of town clerk. Mr. Ham-ahan is a genial man of generous im- 
pulses and has many friends in Clare and the surrounding country 
where he is widely known. 



W n.I.I.\M OLIVER FORSBERCi. 

William Oliver Forsberg. who owns and operates one «»f the 
fine.st threshing outfits in Webster county, has passed the greater 
part of his life in Dayton township, where he is now residing. He 
was born in Sweden on the 4tli <'f January, 1875, and is a son of 
Peter and Martha (Erickson) F<.rsberg. 'l-fic parents were born, 
reared and married in Sweden, the father's nat.il day being in 
,846 and that of the mother in ^f^^^. Peter I-orsberg. who was 



194 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

a carpenter, emigrated to the United States with his family in 
1880, locating in Dayton. Here he established a shop and con- 
tinued to follow his trade for four years. In the spring of 1884, 
he removed to Bassett, Rock county, Nebraska, and homesteaded 
a hundred and sixty acres of land. He did not survive long there- 
after, his death occurring in the autumn of 1884. The mother 
with her family remained on the farm for eight years. At the 
expiration of that time she rented her place and returned to 
Dayton, where she still resides. 

As he was only a child of five \'ears when he emigrated to the 
United States with his parents, William Oliver Forsberg has but 
little recollection of -the land of his birth. At the usual age he 
entered the public schools of Dayton, which he attended until 
the family removed to Nebraska. There he continued his studies 
during the winter months and assisted with the work of the farm 
during the summer until he was seventeen. In 1892 he returned 
to \\'ebster county with his mother, who located in Dayton. Dur- 
ing the succeeding five years he worked out as a farm hand and 
followed such other pursuits as enabled him to earn an honest 
living. He was enterprising and thrifty and during that time 
he managed to save enough from his earnings to enable him to 
purchase a half interest in a threshing outfit. Three years later 
he bought his partner's interest in the business and has ever 
since been alone. As he is a capable man, and thoroughly de- 
pendable and trustworthy, he has built up a very good business, 
and now operates one of the most completely equipped outfits in 
the county. 

Mr. Forsberg was united in marriage to Miss Louise Ek- 
lund. a daughter of Gustavus A. and Josephine Eklund and a 
native of Sweden. The parents were also natives of Sweden, 
the father's birth occurring in 1853, and there they were married. 
They emigrated to the United States in 1882, settling on a farm 
west of Dayton in Dayton township. There the mother passed 
away and the father subse(]uently went to northwestern Iowa, 
locating in Palo Alto county, where he farmed as a renter for 
six years, and then bought eighty acres of excellent land. He 
has ever since devoted his energies to the further improvement 
and cultivation of this place and now owns a valuable and at- 
tractive farm. Five children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Fors- 
berg. as follows: Wihner, Mikhen. Melvin. ( iladys and Chester. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 195 

Mr. Forsberg is a member of Dayton Camp. M. W. A., and 
votes the republican ticket. He is one of the progressive citizens 
of Dayton township, wiiere his diligence and energetic methods 
and his reliabiHty in matters of business fully entitle him to the 
respect and esteem of liis crimmunitv. 



SVEXD P. SWANSOX. 

Svend P. Swanson. who engages in general farming and stock- 
raising on an eighty acre tract of land located on section y of 
Dayton township, was born in Xorthern Gilland, Denmark, on 
the i6th of September, 1858. He is a son of Peter and Magda- 
line (Ciiristensen) Swanson, likewise natives of Denmark, where 
for many years the father engaged in farming. Me is still liv- 
ing on the old home place, but the mother passed away in 191 1. 
The family of Mr. and Mrs. Swanson numbered twelve, as fol- 
lows: Annie, who is at home with her father in Denmark; Kris- 
ten, the wife of Tom Larson, a farmer in Virginia; Hannah, de- 
ceased; Christina, the widow of Peter Morris, of Council P.lutTs, 
Iowa; Svend P., our subject: Andrew, wlm is a resident of Mis- 
souri Valley, Iowa; ]\linnie, who married H. P. Johnson, a farmer 
of Kearney county, X'ebraska : Lawrence, a farmer of Harrist)n 
county, Iowa; Trena, who married James Morris, a merchant 
and the postmaster in Stork, Minnesota; Knute. who died in 
the Danish army ; and two children, who died in infancy. 

Svend P. Swanson was reared on the farm where he was born 
and educated in the schools of the vicinity. He assisted his fatiier 
in tilling the fields and caring f(^r the crops until he was twenty- 
two years of age, when he decided that the future held but little 
promise for him in his native land and resolved to come to 
America. ,He had several sisters living in the United States, so in 
1880 he took passage for this country, with Council Bluffs. Iowa, 
as his destination. Soon after his arrival there he ..bt.iined work 
on a farm, where he was employed for four years. .\t the expira- 
tion of that time he returned to Council Bluffs and worked in a 
restaurant for two years. He was next employed as a coachman, 
but he gave this up five years later and went to Washington. 
He followed various pursuits there for two years, then returned 
to Council Pduffs and worke.l f..r a year. In 1S04 he went to 



196 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Harrison county, Iowa, and purchased a farm comprising eighty 
acres and turned his attention to agricultural pursuits. He met 
with very good success in the cultivation of his land, but he 
rented his place in 1898 and came to Webster county, Iowa. Here 
he subsequently bought his present place on section 9 of Dayton 
township. This also consists of eighty acres, all of which is under 
cultivation and in a high state of productivity. Mr. Swanson is 
a very enterprising man of progressive methods as is manifested 
by the well kept appearance of his farm and the e.xcellent condi- 
tion of his stock. He uses good judgment in the direction of his 
activities and gives his personal supervision to every detail con- 
nected with the operation of his farm, and as a result there is 
a general air of thrift and prosperity about the place that sug- 
gests capable and efficient management. As his circumstances 
have warranted he has improved his farm and in 191 1, he erected 
an attractive and comfortable residence and a large, substantial 
barn, both equipped with all modern appointments. He is the 
owner of one of the most valua1)le ])roperties in the comnnuiity 
and is numbered among the prosperous and substantial citizens 
of Dayton township. 

On the 24th of May, 1894, Mr. Swanson was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Emma Swansen, the event being celebrated at Lo- 
gan, Iowa. She is a daughter of Johan Peter and I^Iarie (Mun- 
son) Swansen. The father is deceased Init the mother makes 
her home in Dayton. Mr. Swansen was born at Hvetlanda 
Parish, Sweden. September 11. 1828. and there he was married 
in the fall of 1834 to Miss Munson. It was his desire to become 
a citizen of the L'nitcd States and on the 14th of September. 1868, 
together with his eldest son he took passage for the United 
States. He worked diligently during the succeeding two years, 
and in 1870 sent for the other members of his family. Upon 
their arrival he located at Altona, Illinois, where he resided until 
i88j, when he removed to Dayton township, and engaged in 
farming. In 1898, he retired to Dayton and there he passed away 
on the t.4th of April, 1900. Mrs. Swanson. who was a child of 
seven years when she emigrated to the United States with her 
mother, was the fifth in a family of eight children, born to her 
parents, the others being as follows: Sojihia and Christina, both 
of whom are deceased; Johan, who is a resident of California: 
Caroline, who is deceased ; Marie, of Dayton : AVilliam T.. who 
is living on the old homestead in Dayton township: and Charles 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 197 

F., also deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Swauson liave one child, l-"lor- 
ence, whose birth occurred on tlie 31st of March, 1895. She has 
been a student in the puJilic scliools of Dayton for the past cis^lit 
years and graduated from the high school in June, 191 2. 

Fraternally, Mr. Swanson l)elongs to the Modern Woodmen 
of America, and his political support he gives to such men and 
measures as he deems best c|ualified to subserxc the highest in- 
terests of the community. He is now serving his tenth year as 
school director. Mr. Swanson has led a (|uiet, unobtrusive life, 
but his untiring diligence and his faithful discliarge of all the 
duties and responsibilities of citizenship, as well as the integrity 
and high principles he has manifested in his business transac- 
tions, has won him the respect and esteem of his entire com- 
nninitv. 



ALVIX EMERSO.X ll-.X .\".\XT. 

Alvin Emerson Tennant. wlm has been a resident of hurt Dodge 
for more than a third of a century, lives at Xo. ijjo Central ave- 
nue and has been in the service of the CJleson Drug Company as 
bookkeeper for about twenty-six years. His birth occurred in 
Xew .Milford, Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, on the 291)1 of 
March, 1840, his parents being W illi.im W . and I'lioebe (Lewis) 
Tennant. The father was born in Rhode Island on the 24th of 
fanuary, 1804, while the mother's birth occurred in Hartford, 
Connecticut, on the 24th of June. iSoS. .Mr. and Mrs. Oliver 
Tennant, the paternal grandparents of our subject, lucd to a 
ripe old age. Their children included Oliver, William, Abigail, 
Merrily, Nancy and Frances. The maternal grandfather was a 
sea captain and met his death while at sea in early manhood. His 
wife, Mrs. Marv Lewis, passetl away in Sus<|iiehanna county. 
Pennsylvania. Their children iiuhuld Thurston, Lebeaus. Ko],- 
inson, Joseph, Phoebe, Sallic and Mary. 

William \Y. Tennant, the father of Alvin E. Tennant, was a 
farmer by occupation. In early manhood he went to i'cnnsylva- 
nia, purchased two hundred and sixty acres of timber lan.l in 
Susquehanna county, cleared an<l imi-rovcd the properly and 
reared his family thereon. In 1K67 he and his wife came to Web- 
ster county, Iowa, and here they spent the remain.ler of their 



198 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

lives, passing away in Burnside township. Mr. Tennant died on 
the 22d of September, 1879, when more than seventy-five years 
old, and his wife was called to her final rest in 1883 at the age of 
seventy-five. Both were devoted members of the Baptist church. 
To them were born seven sons, as follows: Orange \\'. and 
George W., both of whom are deceased; John A\'., a resident of 
Webster county, Iowa; Lewis W., living in New ]\Iilford, Penn- 
sylvania; Alvin Emerson, of this review; William Rile3^ of Fort 
Dodge ; and Austin D. 

Alvin Emerson Tennant was reared on his father's farm in 
Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, and there attended the com- 
mon schools in the acquirement of an education. In i860 he re- 
moved westward to Lee county, Illinois, and there was engaged 
as a farm hand for one year, on the expiration of which period 
he worked on the Mississippi river. In the fall of 1863 he re- 
turned to Illinois and enlisted for service in the Union army of tiie 
Civil war, becoming a member of Company C, Seventh Illinois 
Cavalry, and remaining at the front to the time of the cessation 
of hostilities. He enlisted as a private and was detailed as a 
clerk under Colonel Flint at General Palmer's headquarters in 
Louisville, Kentucky, where he was honorably discharged. After 
the close of the war he returned to Illinois and followed farming 
in Lee county until 1867, when he came to Iowa, settling near 
Burnside. He afterward spent three years in Nebraska liut since 
1878 he has made his home in Fort Dodge. He has been con- 
nected with the Oleson Drug Company in the capacity of book- 
keeper for aliout twenty-six years. His long retention in the em- 
ploy of this firm is unmistakalile evidence of liis aliility. fidelity 
and trustworthiness. He formerly was in tiie service of tiie 
Fort Dodge National Bank for several years. 

As a companion and helpmate on the journey of life Mr. 
Tennant chose Miss Eva M. Tripp, who was I)orn at .\mlioy, 
Illinois, on the iith of Septeml)er, i85(). her parents l)eing Ralph 
O. and Satirah fPowell) Trijip. natives of New York and To- 
ronto, Canada, respectively. Mr. and Mrs. David Tripp, the pa- 
ternal grandparents of Mrs. Tennant, had the following children : 
Ralph, David, Hannah, Lorette, Philosia and Laura. Her ma- 
ternal grandparents, William and Catharine Ann Powell, lived to 
reach the ages of sixty-five and ninety-eight years respectively. 
Their children were five in number. Satirah. James, Marv. Eliza 
and Maria. Ralph O. Tripp was taken to Illinois when but four 



HISTORY Ul" WEUSTER COLXTY 



199 



years of age, and his wife was a maiden of fourteen years when 
she took up her abode in that state. They came to Iowa about 
1868. Ralph O. Tripp was a farmer by occupation and during- 
the period of the Civil war served as a private in an Illinois resi- 
ment for nearly two years, being mustered out at tiie close of 
hostilities. His demise occurred at Liscoml), Iowa, in 1898. 
when he had attained the age of sixty-six years, while his wife 
was called to her final rest in 1884 at the age of forty-eight 
years. Mrs. Tennant, who is their only child, is the mother of 
six children, Inez RI., Blanche .M.. Alvin l-'.ari, W-ra. .Marie and 
Ralph. 

Alvin Emerson Tennant gives his political allegiance to the 
republican party and fraternally is identified with the Ancient 
Order of United Workmen. He retains pleasant relations with 
his old army conn-ades through his membership in Fort Donelson 
Post, G. A. R. Mr. and Mrs. Tennant and five of their children 
are members of the Christian church. The ]iarents have a host 
of warm friends throughout the community and justly merit the 
regard and esteem which is uniforndv accorded them. 



ALBERT EDWARD ACKER, M. D. 

Dr. Acher is one of the thoroughly prepared and successful 
physicians of Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he has been engaged in 
the general practice of his profession since January i, 1907. He 
was born near Napoleon, Indiana, November 23, 1878, and is a 
son of John and Martha Magdalene (Flick) Acher. The fath.er 
was a native of Prussia, Germany, and emigrated to America iu 
1859, settling first in Minnesota, where he was engaged in farm- 
ing. At the opening of the Civil war he answered the call of his 
adopted country to defend the flag of the Union and enlisted in 
the Minnesota volunteer infantry for the entire period of the 
war. At the close of that great civil conflict he was honorably 
discharged and returned to his home in Minnesota, from which 
he later mo\ed to Napoleon. Indiana, where he purchased land 
located near that city and on that j)ro|)erty followed farming 
until the close of his life, which occurred in \SH(}. His widow 
remained with her children on the farm until 189J. when she 
established her residence in Napoleon, where she now resides. 



200 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Dr. Acher was reared at home and received liis early education 
in the public schools of the district in which he lived, and was 
graduated from the Napoleon high school with the class of 1894. 
During his years as a student in the public schools he prepared 
himself for teaching and for three years was engaged in that 
work in Webster county in the district near his home. Indus- 
trious and economical in his habits, he was able to save a sutificient 
sum with which to pursue for one year a literary course in the 
State University of Indiana and later he took up the study of 
medicine in the medical department of that university, from which 
he was graduated with the degree of M. D. (regular) in the 
class of 1905. Immediately following his graduation he served 
for one year as interne in the Deaconess Hospital in Indianapolis. 
He then made his first location as a practicing physician at Xora, 
not far from Indianapolis, where he remained for si.x months, 
after which he came to Fort Dodge, Iowa. On January i, 1907, 
he opened an office in the Reynolds block on Central avenue and 
there engaged in the general practice of his profession. When 
the new First National Bank building was completed he removed 
his offices to more suitable rooms which he found located at 
Nos. 511 and 512 in that building, at which place he has since re- 
mained. The ofifices contain every convenience suited to the prac- 
tice of his j)rofession. having a well appointed reception room which 
is jointly used by the subject of this review and Dr. W. K. Bates. 
In the ])raclice of medicine at Fort Dodge, Dr. Acher has met with 
well merited success and has already taken a prominent i)lace among 
his brother practitioners in the field. 

In June, 1906, Dr. Acher was united in marriage to Miss Marna 
Pierson, a daughter of John C. and .Martha J. ( b'owler) Pierson, 
the former of German descent and a native of Pennsvlvania. and 
the latter a native of Ohio. The father was engaged in the con- 
tracting and building business and for many years was one of the 
best known contractors of Indianapolis. In that city he has 
erected some of the largest business blocks and many of the 
buildings which now helj) to adorn and make l)eautiful the capital 
city of Indiana. He was also the builder of the famous Tom 
Taggart Hotel at French Lick, Indiana. His death occurred in 
Indianapolis in May. 1910. and his widow still maintains her 
residence in that city. To Dr. and Mrs. .'\cher three children 
were born: John Chandler, born May ig. 1907; Martha Jane. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY l>()1 

who was born February i, 1909, and ditnl May .'3, 1910; and 
Chiron Chester, born January 9, 1912. 

Dr. Acher is a member of the Webster County Medical So- 
ciety, of which he is serving his first term, as president, and also 
belongs to the Iowa State Medical Society and the American 
Medical Association. He is affiliated with the democratic party, 
and fraternally is a member of Ashlar Lodge, No. iii, F. & A. 
M., of Fort Dodge. He also belongs to the Fort Dodge Lodge. 
No. 248, A. O. U. \\'., also the lodge of the Loyal Order of 
Moose, and is a member of the Sons of Herman. Dr. Aclier is 
already recognized as one of the successful physicians of Fort 
Dodge and he has long since gained the respect of the citizens 
of that place and is looked upon as one of the reliable and desir- 
able members of the community in which he lives. The home of 
Dr. and Mrs. Acher is located at No. 708 North Sixteenth street 
and here their many friends are always assured of a cordial 
greeting. 



E. T. DAVIDSON. 



E. T. Davidson, who has been the incumbent of the office of 
postmaster in Duncombe for the past three years, was born in 
Hamilton county, this state, on the 29th of April, 1877. He is 
a son of Thomas and Isabelle Davidson, natives of Norway. The 
father came to the United States in 1866, first locating in Illi- 
nois, where he worked out by the month as a farm hand for live 
years. At the end of that time he continued his journey westward 
to Iowa, settling in Hamilton county. After engaging in farm- 
ing there as a renter for several years, he removed witii his 
family to Webster county and here he has ever since lived. 
Shortly after his arrival he bought eighty acres of land in Colfa.x 
township, diligently applying himself to its further improvement 
anfl cultivation until 1909. In the latter year he disposed of his 
farm and he and the mother removed to Duncombe. 

E. T. Davidson was reared in his native county and educated 
in the common schools. .\s usual with lads living in the country 
he was early trained to agricultural pursuits, remaining at home 
and assisting his father with the operation of the home place 
until it was sold. More and more of the responsibility con- 



202 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

nected with its cultivation devolved upon him until several years 
before coming to town he had entire charge of the property. 
Soon after they located in Duncombe he was appointed post- 
master and is still serving in that capacitj', having proven to be 
a competent and efficient man for the office. 

In October, 1904, Mr. Davidson was married to Miss Jessie 
Nelson, a daughter of X. J. and Mary Nelson and to them have 
been born two children: Mae. who is six years of age; and 
Curtis, who has passed the second anniversarj' of his birth. The 
family are members of the Lutheran church. 

Mr. Davidson votes the republican ticket, and has served as 
clerk of Colfax township, while residing there, and is now secre- 
tary of the school board. He owns his residence and is one of 
the stockholders and \ ice president of the Farmers Savings 
Bank of Duncombe, one of the well established and thriving 
financial institutions of the county. Mr. Davidson is well liked 
by the citizens of the community generally, as he is gracious and 
accommodating and satisfactorily meets the many demands on 
his office. 



EDWARD KENDALL. 



Edward Kendall, who is living retired in Badger, has been for 
many years prominently connected with the agricultural and 
business development of the section in which he resides and is 
an honored veteran of the Civil war. He has been enterprising, 
straightforward and honorable in all relations of his life and de- 
serves the rest which he is enjoying because he has earned it 
by diligent and long-continued labor. He was born in Ashby, 
Massachusetts, April 19, 1841, and is a son of John E. and Laura 
A. (Kendall) Kendall, natives of that state. The father was 
a carpenter by trade and spent his entire life engaged in that 
occupation in Massachusetts. He died in Ashby in 1903, having 
long survived his wife, who passed away in 1841. 

Edward Kendall pursued his studies in the public schools of 
his native city, continuing his education there until he was nine 
years of age. At that time he left home in order to live w-ith an 
uncle in Peru. Illinois, where he resumed his lessons. In 1856 
our subject's Uncle Bradford Kendall moved to Otho township 




KnWAKI) KKNDALL 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 205 

— buying- a quarter of a section and lived tliere three years. The 
uncle then returned to Peru, but our subject remained and worked 
as a farm hand. At Fort Dodge on August 20, 1861, Edward Ken- 
dall enlisted in Company A., Eleventh Volunteer Cavalry, and 
served for three years and two months, taking part in various im- 
portant engagements. He was shot in the right leg at South .\nna 
Bridge, eight miles from Richmond, Virginia, and so seriously 
disabled that he is troubled by his wound at tlie present time. 
On October 20, 1864. he received his discharge and returned to 
Iowa and worked as a fireman on the Chicago & Northwestern 
Railroad for a year, going at the end of that time to Fort Dodge, 
where he drove a stage for some time. He later obtained employ- 
ment by the month as a farm laborer, being active in this capacity 
for several vears before he was able to rent land. This he eventu- 
ally did and followed farming in this way for two years. .\t the 
end of that time he purchased one hundred and twenty acres of 
land in Newark township and began its cultivation. He farmed 
along the most progressive and systematic lines, improving his 
property to the best of his ability, erecting new buildings and 
mstalling modern machinery. He remained uixm this tract of 
land until 1890, when he sold his holdings and moved to Badger, 
where he engaged in the buying and selling of horses, .\fter 
eleven years of activity along this line he retired but still makes 
his home in Badger, where he owns a comfortable and attractive 
residence and has many acquaintances and friends. 

Mr. Kendall, has been twice married. In 187.^ he wedded Miss 
Clara Kitchen and they became the parents of one child. Myrtle, 
who was burned to death in Chicago in September. 1907, the 
accident being- caused by the ex])losion of a gasoline stove. Mr. 
Kendall's first wife passed away in 1878 and on l)ecend)er 4. 
i88j, he was united in marriage to .Miss Lucretia Roy. a daughter 
of Robert and Mary ( Rudman ) Roy. the former a native of 
Scotland and the latter of Indiana. The father was a shoemaker 
by trade and came to this country when he was twenty-one years 
of age, settling in Indiana and later in Iowa, where he followed 
his chosen occupation at .\lgona. Sul)sequently he moved to 
Livermore and after many years' residence in that city finally 
established himself in Rolfe, where he died in 1897. having sur- 
vived his wife by ten years. Mr. and Mrs, Kendall have four 
children: Laura, who married Clarcr.c;- Thompson, a fanner 



206 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

of Badger township; and Frank E.. Edna G. and \'erne D., all of 
whom are living at home. 

Mr. Kendall is a republican in his political beliefs and has served 
with ability and conscientiousness as a member of the village 
council. He was assessor of Newark township for some time 
and also acted as school director. He is an adherent of the 
Presbyterian church and a member of Fort Donelson Post, G. .A. 
R., being numbered among the worthv and honored x'eterans of 
the war of the Rebellion. 



WILLIAM BARROW MAN. 

\\ illiam Barrowman is one of the well known merchants of 
Lehigh, Iowa, of which city he has been a resident since 1881. 
He was born near Glasgow, Scotland, June 4, 1841, and in his 
native land received his early education. He emigrated to Amer- 
ica in 1869 and settled first in Henry county, Illinois, where he 
took up work as foreman of a coal mine. He later removed 
to Lehigh, Iowa, and at once engaged in coal mining with the 
Crooked Creek Coal Company. Afterward he owned and oper- 
ated a coal mine of his own for a time and later leased a mine from 
the Crooked Creek Coal Company. He subsequently retired from 
mining and established himself in the restaurant business, where 
the town hall now stands, in Lehigh. He remained in that loca- 
tion in business until the time of the great hre at Lehigh, which 
destroyed all of the business houses in that part of the town, and 
he then removed to the west side of the town and located at a 
point half way up West Hill and there conducted a restaurant 
until he had completed a new brick building on the site of his 
original location. In the new building he opened a general mer- 
cantile store, to which he ga\e his attention for two years, after 
which time he sold the Iniilding to the town for the purpose of a 
town hall. He then purchased his present store, which is lo- 
cated on the summit of the West Side Hill, opposite the new 
high school building. The property was formerly known as Silas 
Smith's old store. In that property the sul^ject of this review has 
since successfully conducted a general merchandising establish- 
ment. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 207 

Mr. Barrowmaii was tirst nianioil in Scotland to Miss Chris- 
tiana White, and they were the parents of thirteen children, seven 
of whom are living, Christiana, Jane, Margaret, William, David, 
Robert and Charley. The mother of this family died at the age 
of forty-five years and was buried in Otho cemetery. The father 
was later married to Mrs. Constance (Bennett) Retallick, who 
was the widow of John Retallick and a daughter of John and 
Constance (Dunstan) Bennett, who were natives of England. 
Mrs. Barrownian Ijy her first husband is the mother of one child. 
John C. Retallick. and to Mr. and Mrs. Barrowman one child 
has been born, Hypatia Barrowman. Mr. Barrowman has served 
as mayor of Lehigh for several terms but for the past twenty-live 
years he has been at heart a socialist and not interested in present 
political issues as advocated Ijy the old political parties. He was 
one of the early pioneers of Lehigh, having settled in that town 
at a time when the entire mercantile business was conducted from 
three small stores, one of which was located on the east side and 
two on the west side of the river, and the bridge to connect the 
two parts of the town had just been completed. Since his resi- 
dence in Lehigh he has always enjoyed the good-will and esteem 
of his fellow citizens and is a man who has always identified him- 
self with every public measure intended to advance the business 
and educational interests of the citv in which he lives. 



.\. .\i. I)a\\i.i-;y. 



A. M. Dawley was the builder uf the tirst frame house in Fort 
Dodge and with the history of the city in its upbuilding and devel- 
opment he was closely associated as the years passed on. He 
saw the possibilities here and utilized them not only for his own 
benefit but for the welfare of the community at large. an<l his 
name i."!, therefore, inseparably interwoven with the reconis of 
Webster county. He was born in Chiliicotlu-, ( )hi(), .March n). 
1830, and was one of a family of three sons and a daughter, whose 
parents were Thomas and Eliza CHook) Dawley, both of whom 
were natives of Virginia. The father was a merchant and was 
identified with commercial interests in Virginia until he deter- 
mined to remove to Ohio, liecoming one of the earU' settlers of 
the latter state. In pioneer times he would raft his goods down 



208 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

the Ohio and Mississippi rivers to New Orleans and he lost his 
life while on one of those trips when his children were very 
small. His wife survived him many years and it was in the late 
'60s wiien slie was called to her final rest. Their children were 
John, Thomas, A. M. and Catharine Dawley. 

A. M. Dawley was reared to manhood in his native state and 
supplemented his early education acquired in the public schools 
by a course in Mann College, being graduated from the law 
department. Aljout 1852 he removed to Granville. Illinois, and 
in February, 1855, was there married. In March, of the same 
year, he brought his bride to Iowa, settling in Fort Dodge. He 
brought with him a stock of dry goods and opened a store in a 
log cabin a block west of the present site of the Duncombe Hotel, 
which was also his ])lace of residence for a few weeks. He built 
the first frame house in Fort Dodge on the present site of the 
Duncombe Hotel, hauling the lumber from Boone. The family 
occupied that place for about two years and afterward the house 
was moved to the eastern outskirts of the town, where it still 
stands. It was later found, while excavating for another build- 
ing, that the house originally stood on an Indian graveyard, which 
was not known, however, at the time, but in excavating many 
bones of the Indians were exhumed. In 1857 Mr. Dawley erected 
a large brick residence where the K. C. building now stands and 
following his demise his widow built a large frame residence ad- 
joining. He passed away in 1885 and this frame building was 
erected in 1886. It now stands on South Tenth street, just south 
of the Wahconsa Hotel. 

It was on the 8th of February, 1853. that Mr. Dawley was 
married to Miss Ellen Parker, who was liorn in Calais, Maine. 
March 31, 1833, a daughter of Dr. Charles and Susan (White) 
Parker. Her father was born in Livermorc. Maine, and was a 
son of James and Phoebe Parker, the former a soldier of the 
Revolutionary war. In his family there were eight children, 
namely: James, Jesse, Simon, Charles, Benjamin, Xancy, Sarah 
and Phoebe. Dr. Charles Parker was for many years a practicing 
physician at Calais, Maine. He afterward removed to Houghton, 
Maine, and sul)sec|ucntly lived at Shickshinny, Pennsylvania, 
where he died in 1882, when more than seventy years of age. His 
wife had passed away in 1835, when in young womanhood. They 
were members of the Universalist church and they had two chil- 
dren, the elder daughter being Augusta, the wife of Horatio 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 209 

Sprague, now a resident of I'rairie \'ie\v. Kansas. To Mr. and 
Mrs. Dawley were born four sons, l-rank. the eldest, is an able 
lawyer of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He married Margaret Elizabeth 
Jacobs, of Fort Dodge, and they have four children, Fred, Cath- 
arine, Marion and i'rances. Ciiarles, the second son of the family, 
is a court reporter of Chicago. He married Renette E. Love, of 
DeKalb, Illinois, and they have a daughter, Helen. Fred, the 
third of the family, died at the age of six years. Harry passed 
away at Tucson, Arizona, when thirty-six years of age. 

The death of the husljand and father occurred in Washington, 
D. C, on the 24th of February, 1885, when he was about fifty-rive 
}'ears of age. He and his wife had traveled life's journey happily 
together for about thirty years. They held membership in the 
Lniversalist church and always displayed sterling qualities of 
character, yir. Dawley was the first justice of the peace in Fort 
Dodge and was appointed register of the United States land of- 
fice at Fort Dodge in 1869 and filled the position until the follow- 
ing year. He practiced law here for many years, becoming 
recognized as an able and learned attorney, and he also developed 
and improved a farm three miles north of Fort Dodge, although 
he did not make his home thereon. The last years of his life were 
spent in aiding to secure legislation for the Des !\Ioines river land 
settlers and this kept him the greater part of the time in Wash- 
ington, D. C. The River Land Bill for which he had labored so 
persistently finally passed the house of representatives the day 
before his death. He was a forcible public speaker, strong in 
his convictions, patriotic and fearless in his citizenship and a 
man of great force of character. He correctly judged life and its 
opportunities and made good use of his time and talents not only 
for the benefit of himself but also for others. 



WILLIAM 11. 11. CULBY. 

William II. II. Colby is one of the leading business men of 
Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he conducts a livery l)usincss r)n an 
extensive scale. He was born in Vermont, March iK. 1840. and is 
a son of Harrison and Mary Colby, who were natives of that 
state. The father was prominent and successful in the hotel 
business in Vermont for many years and his jirospcrity followed 



210 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

him when he moved to Wisconsin. He remained in that state 
for some time, going to Iowa in the '70s. He located in Fort 
Dodge and resided in this city until his death. He was one of 
the representative citizens of the community and his activities 
in the promotion of the Fort Ridgeley Railroad have had an 
influential result upon the civic prominence of Fort Dodge. He 
died in 1885 and was survived by his wife for one year, her death 
occurring in 1886. 

William H. H. Colby went to school in Wisconsin and followed 
the usual course of public instruction. He remained with his 
parents until his marriage in 1859, when he started in active life 
for himself in the livery and hotel business at Sun Prairie, Wis- 
consin. This venture was successful and was later followed by 
a general merchandise store at Token Creek, Wisconsin, in the 
operation of which Mr. Colby acted for his father and was suc- 
cessful in conserving his interests. In 1870 he removed to Fort 
Dodge, Iowa, and here engaged in the livery and lumber business 
upon the same site which he now occupies in his present activities. 
He has never left this location and has become one of the pros- 
perous and successful men of Fort Dodge. He has gradually dis- 
continued the lumber department of his enterprise and devotes 
his entire attention to the liverj' and transfer branch. His busi- 
ness has increased phenomenally and the enterprise which was 
begun upon a small and humble scale has now evolved into one of 
the largest of its kind in the city. He has recently erected a new 
brick building to give him increased capacity for his business 
transactions and has been an important factor in nnmicipal de- 
velopment. He has devoted his time almost e.\clusi\ely to com- 
mercial pursuits and his energies, directed along well controlled 
and economic lines, have resulted in a gratitx ing degree of [iros- 
perity. Although he is absorbed in business he is nevertheless a 
loyal citizen of Fort Dodge and his cooperation is never asked 
in vain in any movement looking toward its future prosperity and 
prominence. 

Mr. Colby was married at the age of nineteen in Token Creek. 
Wisconsin, to Miss Emma E. Spaulding. a daughter of George 
H. and Mary (Lawrence) Spaulding, both natives of Vermont. 
The father was a prominent hotel proprietor and farmer in Token 
Creek for many years. After his wife's death he retired from 
commercial pursuits and made his home in Fort Dodge with his 
son-in-law. the subject of this sketch, with whom he remained 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 211 

until his death, which occurred in 1874. To Mr. and Mrs. Colby 
have been born two children : Fred G., now a bookkeeper in his 
father's establishment ; and Nellie, the wife of Arthur Keys, of 
Santiago, California. On October 10. igii. ]\Irs. Colby was sud- 
denly stricken with paralysis and passed away on October 13. 
191 1, after fifty-two years of happy married life. 

Politically Mr. Colby is a republican but has never sought 
public office, although he casts his ballot at each election and 
takes an intelligent interest in public affairs. He is a member 
of the Masonic order but this constitutes his only fraternal af- 
filiation. He prefers to keep his attention concentrated on the 
conduct of his business, believing that in commercial prosperity 
along worthy lines and in an exemplary private life true success 
and happiness lie. 



CLEMMON L. GRANGER. 

Among the enterprising business men of Fort Dodge whose 
efforts have been freely expended in promoting the development 
of the town must be mentioned the late Clemmon L. Granger, 
who contributed generously of both his time and money and 
worked tirelessly to advance the interests of the community. 

He was born at iNIount Clemens, Michigan, February 11, 1850, 
and is a son of Sylvester and Mary (Vernie) Granger. The 
father was born and reared in the state of New Y'ork and was 
of English extraction, while the mother was born in Michigan 
and was of French descent. Agricultural pursuits always en- 
gaged the energies of Sylvester Granger, who removed with his 
family from Michigan to Indiana in i860, locating at Crown Point, 
where he and the mother passed the remainder of their lives. 

The education of Clemmon L. Granger was begun in the com- 
mon schools of his native state and completed in a private acad- 
emy at Crown Point. In his early manhood he went to Belle- 
ville, Illinois, as local representative of the McCormick Manufac- 
turing Company of Chicago. Later he was made general agent 
for this company in the states of Maryland and Pennsylvania, 
serving in this capacity for three years. In 1879, he came to Fort 
Dodge, Iowa, and establishe<l an implement and seed store on 
the public square, where the Granger Company is now located. 



212 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

He was associated with the late George F. \\ ise for three years, 
the business being conducted under the firm name of Granger & 
Wise. Later he formed a partnership with Peter M. Mitchell, 
also deceased, who is mentioned at greater length elsewhere in 
this work, and for fifteen years the store was conducted under 
the name of Granger & ^Mitchell, l^'or three years C. E. Brown 
now of Sioux City, Iowa, was financially interested in the enter- 
prise, and during that time it was operated under the name of 
C. L. Granger & Company. Mr. Granger continued to be actively 
identified with this business until his death, which occurred at the 
Passavant Hospital, Chicago, April 6. 1900. He met with good 
success and had built up a nice patronage, being favorably known 
throughout the agricultural sections of the entire county. 

At Crown Point. Indiana, on the 4th of October, 1875. Mr. 
Granger was united in marriage to Miss Alice A. W'illey, a 
daughter of George and Cynthia (Nash) Willey. The father was 
a native of Connecticut and when a small lad came to Madison 
county, Xew York, with his parents. There he was reared to 
manhood and subsequently met and married Miss Nash, a native 
of Madison county and a member of an old colonial family, many 
of her ancestors having participated in the Revolution. Mr. 
\\ illey began life as a farmer, but he subse(|uently studied law 
and also engaged in the real-estate business. In the early years 
of their domestic life he and his wife removed to Indiana, settling 
in Lake county, and there both passed away. Mrs. Ciranger, 
who is of English extraction in both the paternal and maternal 
lines, was given the advantages of good schooling and attended 
both the high school at Crown Point and a young ladies' semi- 
nary, where she completed her education. 

When first granted the right of franchise upon attaining his 
majority, Mr. Granger voted the democratic ticket, but he later 
transferred his allegiance to the republican party, whose candi- 
dates he thereafter supported. He was alwaj's one of the fore- 
most men in the community and took an active and helpful in- 
terest in all nninicipal affairs. His fellow townsmen manifested 
their appreciation of his services by electing him mayor of the 
city on five different occasions. That he discharged the duties of 
this ofifice with efficiency and in a manner highly satisfactory to 
the community at large is evidenced by the period of his service. 
He was mayor when the city voted for bonds for the installation 
of a waterworks svstem and he was likewise the incumbent of 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 213 

this office when the street railway franchise was granted. In 
the discharge of his official duties he exhibited the spirit of prog- 
ress and enterprising methods that cliaracterized him as a l)usi- 
ness man, and worked tirelessly in his efforts to promote the 
development of the various public utilities. He was not identified 
with any church but attended the Presbyterian, of which Mrs. 
Granger is a member, and fraternally he was affiliated with 
Ashlar Lodge. Xo. in. A. F. & A. M. ; Calvary Commandery, 
Xo. 24. K. T. : and Fort Dodge Lodge, Xo. 248, .-K. O. U. \V. 
Although twelve years have elapsed since the passing away of 
Mr. Granger, his personality was too strongly impressed upon 
the community in the development of which he had been a dom- 
inant factor, for him to be readily forgotten, while the various 
public utilities he assisted in promoting stand as monuments com- 
memorating his services to the city. 



SEXATOR FREDERIC LARRABEE. 

It has long been an almost universally accepted fact that the 
professional man cannot win success along agricultural or com- 
mercial lines, that the qualities which fit him for one of the learned 
professions are not in harmony with the demands of the farm, the 
shop or the counting house. The record of Senator Frederic 
Larrabee, however, shows that the keen iliscrimination and ana- 
lytical power which make him an able representative of the bar 
also enable him to successfully solve intricate business problems, 
and farming and stock-raising constitute an important source 
of his revenue in addition to his operations in real estate and his 
practice of law. Moreover, his fellow citizens recognize him as 
one well qualified for political leadership, so that he is now repre- 
senting the twenty-seventh district, comprising Calhoun and 
Webster counties, in the upper house of the general assembly. 
He was born in Clermont, Iowa. Xovember 3, 1873. and comes 
of Xew England ancestry. He is a son of ex-Governor William 
Larrabee. one of the honored pioneers and builders of the com- 
monwealth of Iowa, of whom further mention is made on another 
page of this work. His paternal grandfather was .\dani Larrabee. 
a native of Connecticut, who was of English lineage but more 
remotely of French descent. He served as a soldier with the 



214 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

American troops in the War of 1812, holding the rank of Heutenant, 
and a wound which he sustained in an engagement hastened his 
death. Lieutenant Larrabee was a graduate of West Point and 
made a creditable record during his miHtary service. The ma- 
ternal grandfather of Senator Larrabee was Gustave Adolphus 
Appelman, who married Ann Williams. Both were natives of 
Connecticut and Mr. Appelman was of German descent, while his 
wife was of W^elsh lineage. They were pioneer settlers of Clayton 
county. 

Frederic Larrabee was a pupil in the public schools of Cler- 
mont, Iowa, and afterward attended the State University, being 
graduated from the collegiate department in 1897 and from the 
law department in 1898. He afterward pursued a special course at 
Columbia University. Throughout his life he has been a student 
not only of professional problems but also of the great economic, 
political and sociological questions which claim the attention of 
the statesman and the thinking man of the age. He became a 
resident of Fort Dodge in 1901 and has since that time here engaged 
in the practice of law and in the real-estate business. He is also 
interested in stock-raising and farming, breeding and handling 
thoroughbred cattle. He has large landed interests, owning 
several farms in the state which prove good sources of income to 
him. He is likewise interested in the Iowa Savings Bank and 
several banking and other business institutions. His property in- 
cludes land in northern Iowa and a farm in Cooper township, 
Webster county, south of the Fort Dodge city limits, he and his 
brother Charles owning there four hundred acres. Upon that 
place they raise Brown Swiss cattle, their father having brought 
the first herd of Brown Swiss cattle into the state. He selected 
these as the breed best adapted to climatic and other conditions 
in northern Iowa and since that time the name of Larrabee has 
been connected with the breeding and raising of cattle on an 
extensive scale. 

Senator Frederic Larrabee has always been a republican, in- 
terested in the growth and success of the party and doing all in 
his power to further its interests. In 1908 he was elected to repre- 
sent the twenty-seventh district in the state senate, of which 
he is now an active member, making a creditable record by in- 
dorsement of the measures which he deems essential and valuable 
in promoting the welfare of the state. He has among his warm 
friends many of Iowa's most distinguished citizens and he, at all 



HISTORY UF WEUSTEK COLXTV 215 

limes, commands the high regard and confidence of those witli 
whom he associates. He was a member of Company G, Iowa 
National Guard, served as its first heutenant and was connected 
with tlie state militia for about six years as an officer. He acted 
first as lieutenant and later as battalion adjutant of the Fifty-sixth 
Regiment and is widely known in military as well as in other 
circles throughout the state. His ability and fidelity have placed 
him in a position of public trust where he is accorded the honor 
and respect of his fellowmen. 



REV. FRAi\XIS FWW KES. 
Rev. F'rancis Fawkcs is living retired ni Ulhu after a period 



of active service as a Congregational minister, embracing almost 
fifty years of useful and forceful work in the cause of religious 
expansion. He is one of the most widely known and prominent 
clergymen in Otho township, where he has resided for almost 
half a century and where his sincere, earnest and useful life has 
gained him many friends. Mr. Fawkes is a native of England, 
born December 20, 1838, a son of Samuel and Sarah (Austin) 
Fawkes, natives of that country. The father was a weaver of 
woolen cloth in England and later spent ten years in the govern- 
ment employ, working in a dockyard. He remained in his native 
country until 1867 and then came to America, settling near Du- 
buque, Iowa, where he purchased a tract of timber land and began 
its improvement and cultivation. This farm he operated during 
the summer months for a number of years, working in the lead 
ore mines through the winter. He was finally obliged to retire 
on account of old age and took up his residence in Dubuque, 
where he lived until after the death of his wife, which occurred 
in 1892. In 1893 he came to Otho and made his home with the 
subject of this review until his death, in 1896. 

Rev. Francis Fawkes was twenty-five years of age when he 
came to America. He had received a limited education in Eng- 
land, laying aside his books when he was tiiirtccn years of age. 
being compelled at that time to earn his own livelihood. He has. 
however, improved his leisure by constant and well selected read- 
ing and is now one of the most cultured and cducate<l gentlemen 
in Webster countv. ,\t thirteen years of age he went to work in 



216 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

a woolen cloth factory and for four years labored arduously in 
this employment. Afterward he obtained a position in the gov- 
ernment naval depot in the county of Kent and later secured 
work in a drug store in that vicinity, where he remained for 
eight years. In March, 1864, he came to America and settled in 
Dubuque, coming later to \^'isconsin, to an uncle, where he lo- 
cated near Mineral Point. After some weeks' temporar}' resi- 
dence in that section he returned to Dubuque, settling there for 
the second time in May, 1864. He obtained a position in a local 
drug store and for two years retained his connection with this 
enterprise. During all of these various removals he read and 
studied constantly and soon gained a liberal education. He de- 
lights in recalling his early struggles for the acquirement of 
learning and when asked from what school he was graduated, 
answers that he obtained his degree from a drug store. He was 
influenced in joining the ministry by Dr. Guernsey, head of the 
Congregational missionary work, and after his ordination became 
active as a missionary in Iowa. For three and one-half years he 
worked in Durango and "then received a call from a church at 
Dows, where he remained for four years. His first residence in 
Otho dates from 1873 and here he remained for five years, preach- 
ing the gospel and doing other important missionar_\- work. At 
the end of tiiat time his health failed and he was obliged to give 
up active labor. Returning to Dubucpie. he purchased a farm and 
operated it for twehe years with the object of regaining his 
shattered health by constant labor out of doors. His activities 
served the purpose for which they were intended and in 1890 he 
returned to Otho, where for fifteen years he was active in all 
kinds of ministerial work. .\t the end of that time his hearing and 
eyesight became poor and he was obliged to retire from the min- 
istry, although he still maintains his residence in Otho. He owns 
a fine eighty acre farm two miles from town and two fine resi- 
dence lots in the village and upon one of these he has built a 
modern and comfortable home in which he lives. For almost half 
a century he has worked for the spread of the doctrines in which he 
sincerely believes and his life, although quiet and unassuming, 
has been a potent factor of their widespread acceptance. His 
retirement is a well earned rest after arduous and faithful labor 
and was made necessary by failing health. 

Mr. Fawkes was married in 1865 to Miss Elizabeth Fawkes 
and they had one son, Frank H., who is agent for the Northwest- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 217 

ern Mutual Life Insurance Company at Pasadena, California. 
Mr. Fawkes' first wife died in 1868 and in the following year he 
wedded Miss Susan R. Woodhouse, a daughter of William and 
Ann (Boyd) A\'oodhouse, the former a native of Indiana and the 
latter of Kentucky. To this union were born seven children, 
Harriet G., Clement W., Sarah R.. Edith A., Nora M., Ernest W., 
and Otis, whose death occurred in 1874. Of the six who survive 
all are married except Ernest. Mrs. Fawkes was struck by light- 
ning on July 4, 1883, and instantly killed. In Novemlier, 1890. 
Mr. Fawkes was again married, his third wife being Miss Mar- 
garet W. Martin, a daughter of James and Janet (Lyon) Martin, 
natives of Scotland. The father was a farmer in his native coun- 
try and continued in that occupation all his life. He died in Scot- 
land in 1859 and his wife died there in 1875. I^'^e of their children 
at different times came to the United States, all settled in Webster 
county and are married. Mrs. Fawkes was born in Scotland in 
October, 1839. 

Mr. Fawkes gives his allegiance to the proliibition party and 
is an active worker in this organization. He is a fine example 
of a sincere, earnest, unselfish and industrious clergyman. Per- 
sonal advancement has never entered into his plan of life and his 
professions of faith are supported by good works and charities 
which make him an influence in the promotion of the universal 
religion of kindness and good-will. 



HENRY H. BALDWIN. 

Henrv H. Baldwin is one of the honored veterans of the Civil 
war, who now, after many years of successful attention to his 
chosen vocation as a printer, is living retired at Fort Dodge. 
Webster county, Iowa, where he has spent the major portion of 
the active business years of his life. He was born on Orange 
Mountain, New Jersey, I-'eljruary 10, 1843, 'i"d is a son of Lemuel 
and Rachel (Perry) Baldwin, tlie former of wiiom was born in 
Orange, New Jersey, in 1806. The mother was a native of New 
Jersey and was related to Commodore Perry, of Lake Erie fame 
in the War of 1812. The fatlier. (if English descent, reniovcil 
with his family to Columbus, Ohio, and tlicre established his 
home in 1845, where he died in July, !856. 



218 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Henry H. Baldwin was reared in his parents' home and re- 
ceived his elementary education in the public schools of Columbus, 
Ohio. At the close of his school years he became an apprenticed 
printer on the Ohio State Journal and in that occupation he con- 
tinued until the opening of the Civil war. He then enlisted at 
Columbus, Ohio, in Company H, Eighty-fifth Ohio Regiment of 
Volunteer Infantry, and at once went with his command to Camp 
Chase, where his company was employed in guard duty at the 
federal prison. He was among the early volunteers who re- 
sfionded to President Lincoln's call for thirty-day men and at the 
expiration of his three months of service he went to Cambridge, 
Illinois, to which place his mother had removed, and there en- 
listed in Company C. of the One Hundred and Twelfth Illinois 
Volunteer Infantry, and continued as a soldier in the field until 
the close of the war. His command campaigned through the 
states of Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina, dur- 
ing which time his regiment was detailed for six months as 
mounted infantry. He was then transferred to Company F, of 
the Sixty-fifth Illinois Volunteer Infantry. A few of the engage- 
ments in which Mr. Baldwin took part during his life as a soldier 
were the battles of Knoxville, Dallas, Peachtree, Atlanta. New 
Hope Church, Ezra Church, the Franklin and Nashville cam- 
paigns, the battle of Town Creek and the capture of Fort Ander- 
son. His command then joined Sherman at Goldsboro. North 
Carolina, and immediately following the surrender of Johnston 
the regiment went into permanent camp at Greensboro, North 
Carolina, where it remained until the subject of this review was 
mustered out of ser\ice in July. 1S65. His command was detained 
in Greensl)oro for the purpose of restoring civil government in 
that part of North Carolina, and thus failed to participate in the 
grand review of veterans at \\^ashington. Company C. of the 
One Hundred and Twelfth \'nlunteer Infantry, of which the sub- 
ject of this review was a member, belonged to the Third Brigade, 
Third Division of the Twenty-third Corps of the Armv of the 
Ohio. At the close of the war Mr. Baldwin returned to Illinois 
and located at Cambridge, at which place he celebrated his mar- 
riage in 1865. Two years later he established his home at Fort 
Dodge, Iowa, where he accepted the position of foreman of the 
composing room on the Fort Dodge Messenger, and in various 
positions he continued until 191 1, at which time he severed his 
connection with the printing business and retired from acti\x life. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 219 

He was also occasionally employed as ad man in the composing 
room of the Chronicle office at Fort Dodge. His entire business 
career in Fort Dodge, however, was in employment with one or 
the other of these papers. 

In i8f)5 Mr. Baldwin was united in marriage at Camliridge, 
Illinois, to Miss Emma Stephenson, a daughter of Richard and 
Laura (Finch) Stephenson, both of whom were natives of Ken- 
tucky. The father was a veteran of the Civil war and removed in 
1865 from Cambridge to Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he established 
his home and continued to live during the remaining years of his 
life, which closed in 1894. The mother's death occurred in 1886. 
To Mr. and Mrs. Baldwin four children were born. Carrie was 
born in 1866 and died in 1886. Harry O., born in 1872, was mar- 
ried June 5, 1895, to Miss Byrd Utley, of Alden, Iowa, and they 
reside in Fort Dodge. Richard B., born in 1874, was married in 
October, 1906, to Miss Kate Schneider, of Garner, Iowa, and they 
now reside in Fort Dodge. Dawn, who completes the family, is 
the wife of William H. Gaughan, of Phoenix, Arizona. The 
mother of this family died August 18, 1899. 

Mr. Baldwin has been a lifelong republican, and is an honored 
member of Fort Donelson Post, G. A. R., and is also a member of 
the Congregational church of his adopted city. He is one of the 
substantial and highly esteemed men of Fort Dodge and has so 
lived as to gain and retain the good-will and high regard of the 
people with whom he has come in contact. 



PETER F. FLANAGAN. 

The energies of Peter F. hdanagan have for some years been 
successfuly devoted to mercantile pursuits, in which he has won 
the advancement achieved by the man of intelligent effort and 
stalwart purpose. He is a native of Iowa and was born in Clin- 
ton county on the nth of .\i)ril, 1863. his parents being John 
and Catherine (Green) Flanagan. The parents were both na- 
tives of Ireland, whence they emigrated to the I'nitcd States 
in early life. The father fu'st located in Illinois, where he 
farmed for a time, and then rcnioxed to Clinton cfnmty, Jowa. 
There he jiurchascd some land and cniuinued bis agricultural 
pursuits mitil 1870. In the l;itter ycir he dis]K)sed of his place 



220 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

and removed to Greene county, investing his capital in another 
farm. The development of this property enlisted his energies 
until his death, which occurred in 1894. The mother had passed 
away about two years previously. 

Peter F. Flanagan was a lad of seven years when he accom- 
panied his parents on their removal to Greene county, where 
he was rearefl and educated. He assisted with the cultivation 
of the home farm until he was nineteen years of age when he went 
to Lohrville to learn the blacksmith's trade. He followed this 
vocation during the greater part of the succeeding thirteen years, 
following which he worked at the carpenter's trade for a time. 
In 1896, he came to Clare and opened a restaurant, but he sub- 
sequently disposed of this and engaged in the mercantile busi- 
ness. Despite his inexperience the latter venture thrived, largely 
owing to his good judgment, close attention to details and gracious 
and accommodating treatment of patrons. More than average 
prosperity has rewarded the efforts of Mr. Flanagan who in ad- 
dition to his store owns his residence and two store buildings 
and holds some stock in the Clare Mutual Telephone Company. 

In January, 1891, Mr. Flanagan was married to Miss Mary 
Casey, a daughter of Johif and Susan (Ryan) Casey, natives of 
Canada, who had moved to Greene county, Iowa, in 1872. Mr. 
and Mrs. Flanagan have no children of their own but have adopted 
a son, Martin Casey. They are communicants of the Roman 
Catholic church, and fraternally Mr. Flanagan is aflfiliated with 
the Modern Woodmen of .\merica. Knights of Columbus and 
Yeomen. In politics he stanchly supports the republican party, 
but has never sought or aspired to public office. He is a man of 
strong determination and much tenacitv of purpose, as is evidenced 
by his career, which has been pursued w-ith the relentless energy 
of one resolved to succeed. 



ALBERT Hi:XKY 1-REDERICK GUHL. 

The power of energy, resourceful ability, determination, and 
enterprise is well illustrated in the career of .\lbert Guhl. whose 
leading position in business circles of \'incent gives little hint of 
the penniless and friendless condition of the German boy of 
seventeen, who settled in this section of Iowa twenty-one years 







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HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 223 

ago. He is today one of tlie most successful men in Vincent and 
liis prosperity is the more creditable since it lay at the end of 
a hard road and was reached only after ditificulties and early 
struggles. Mr. Guhl was l)orn in Ganschendorf, province of 
Pommern, Germany, July 22, 1874, a son of Frederick and Mary 
(Genson) Guhl, natives of that section. His father is well known 
in the tailoring business in Cianschendorf and has followed that 
occupation during his active life. Neither he nor his wife has 
ever come to America. 

After completing his eilucation in the public schools of Ger- 
many. Albert Cjulil learned the shoemaking trade and after serv- 
ing his apprenticeship, worked at this occupation for one vear. 
Becoming dissatisfied with his attainments and prospects he de- 
termined to seek greater advantages in .America, and crossing 
the Atlantic, settled in Webster county, near Vincent, when he 
\\as seventeen years of age. He obtained work as a farm hand 
in the employ of Henry Bastian and held this position for four 
\'ears. When he resigned he still made his home with his former 
employer and remained in that section of Webster county for 
ten years. At the end of that time he mov-ed to Vincent, where 
he established a small restaurant which was the nucleus of his 
present important enterprise. With true German thrift and 
singleness of purpose, and aided by a determination which is 
an element in his own individuality he a]Jiilied himself to making 
his business expand. I^ittle by little the enterprise grew and 
as success came Mr. Guhl added to his building until today it is 
a large and ably conducted restaurant with all the aspects of 
metropolitan institutions. He has built up a gratifying and con- 
stantly growing ])atronage and has become in the course of 
years wealthy and prosperous. The money which he has made 
he has invested principally in business property in Vincent, own- 
ing five large buildings in the busiest section of the village. 

On March 2-. 1901, Mr. Guhl was unite<l in marriage to Miss 
Anna Wilson, a daughter of Mattliew and Gatherina (Hemming) 
Wilson, natives of Norway, fler father came to America in his 
early years and settled immodiatcK- in Vincent, where for a 
long time he conducted a dairying business. He died in Eagle 
Grove, Iowa, November 20, 1899. His wife makes her home in 
Vincent. Mr. and ^Irs. Guhl have five children. Emma Marie. 
Otto Carl Frederick. Edna Irene, Alice Eillian and .Albert Julius. 
The family belong to the German Lutheran church. 



224 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Mr. Guhl affiliates with the progressive party and for four 
years served as a member of the Vincent town council and did 
much constructive and organizing work along lines of municipal 
advancement, bringing to the discharge of his official duties a 
conscientiousness and an energy and political influence which proved 
him as capable in a public way as in the management of his private 
business enterprise. 



THOMAS F. GURNETT. 

Thomas F. Gurnett has been a resident of Iowa since he was 
six months old and has spent practically his entire life in this 
state. He is now engaged in the operation of a general store at 
Barnum, where he is known as a practical and enterprising busi- 
ness man. He was born in La Salle, Illinois, in September, 1863, 
and is a son of Andrew and Ellen (Martin) Gurnett, natives of 
Ireland. The father came to America in 1850, locating in La 
Salle, Illinois, where he worked as a brakeman on a railroad for 
about three years, moving at the end of that time to Linn county, 
Iowa, where he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land 
at six dollars per acre. He operated this farm and made exten- 
sive improvements, selling it at the end of three years at twelve 
dollars per acre. He then purchased two hundred and forty 
acres, paying for this six dollars per acre, to which he added from 
time to time until he owned five hundred and twenty acres. He 
followed farming until 1909, when he retired from active life and 
moved to the vicinity of Fairfax, where he is now making his 
home with his daughter, Mrs. Frank Cahill. His wife passed away 
in 1904. 

Thomas Gurnett was six months old when he came to Iowa 
with his parents. He was reared at home and received his early 
education in the district schools of Linn county, supplementing 
this by a course at Tilford's Academy at Vinton. Iowa. After he 
completed his studies he worked for his father upon the farm for 
a few years, later renting the Rockford Stock farm, where for 
three years he carried on general agricultural pursuits. He then 
purchased one hundred and twenty acres in College township, 
Linn county, which he operated for seven years, disposing of 
his holdings eventually in order to come to Barnum. where he 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 225 

bought a general store, with which lie has been identified up to 
the present time. He met with rapid and well deserved success 
which was founded upon the systematic and businesslike methods 
by which he operated his enterprise and upon industry, activity 
and honesty which are elements in his character. His store was 
destroyed by fire in 1902 but in the same year Mr. Gurnett erected 
the fine brick building which he now occupies. He carries a 
large stock of goods, which is always complete and artistically 
arranged. He has a large and constantly growing patronage and 
is ranked among the substantial and prosperous merchants of 
Barnum. He is a stockh'older in the Barnum Telephone Com- 
pany and has an interest in a large estate in Linn county. 

In March, 1891, Mr. Gurnett was united in marriage to Miss 
Margaret E. Moran, a daughter of Michael and Elizabeth Moran, 
both natives of Ireland. Mrs. Gurnett passed away on November 
25, 191 1, after a short illness, leaving five children, Lizzie, Willie, 
Thomas, Esther and Leo. 

Fraternally Mr. Gurnett affiliates with the Modern Woodmen 
of America and the Order of Yeomen. He belongs to the Roman 
Catholic church. In his political views he is a consistent demo- 
crat and has served as mayor of Barnum for two terms and was 
a member of the town council for six years. His interest in 
education is evidenced by his ten years of able service on the 
school board, of which he was president for nine years, having- 
shown in all the phases of his political life an eagerness in 
promoting the general welfare and progress of his community, 
which is true public spirit. 



JULIUS ELMER COURTRIGHT. 

Julius E. Courtright is one of the most highly respected and 
esteemed business men in Buncombe, Iowa, where he has lived 
since 1909. He has been identified with the general merchan- 
dise and livery business in the city during the three years of his 
residence and has conducted both his enterprises along modern 
and progressive lines, gaining thereby a gratifying and well de- 
served success. He is a native son of Webster county, having 
been born in Washington township, October 26, 1869. His par- 
ents were James and Ellen (Stalp) Courtright, the former a native 



226 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

of Pennsylvania and the latter of Illinois. His fath"er came to 
Webster county with his parents in 1856 when he was ten years 
of age and was reared and educated in this section. He remained 
with his parents until tlie outbreak of the Civil war when lie enlisted 
in Company K, Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and served until the close 
of hostilities. After his discharge he returned home and worked for 
his father upon the farm for some time, later renting a tract of land 
which he operated several years. He was eventually able to purchase 
a quarter section on section 34. \\'ashington township, which he im- 
proved and cultivated along modem and progressive lines, adding to 
his holdings from time to time until he finally owned two hundred and 
twenty acres well improved and intelligently ileveloped. This farm he 
culti\ated until 1909, when lie sold his property and moved to 
Duncombe, where he has since resided. He has reached the age 
of sixty-six, while his wife is in the sixty-fourth year of her age. 

Julius E. Courtright was reared and educated in \\'ebster 
county and remained with his parents upon the home farm until 
he had attained his majorit\-. In that year he purchased eighty 
acres, constituting a portion of the homestead which had belonged 
to his grandfather, on section 34, \\'ashington township, and spent 
a number of years operating and improving this tract. \\'hcn he 
finally disposed of the property he established himself in the 
mercantile business at Brushy, and conducted an independent en- 
terprise of this kind for two years, selling at the end of that time 
and coming to Duncombe, where he engaged in the livery busi- 
ness. He was successful in this line of occupation for eight years 
but finally disposed of his interests and purchased one hun- 
dred and twenty acres in Washington township, which he 
impro\ed and operated for two years. When he sold that 
farm he purchased eighty acres of land on section 2, Webster 
township, which he has now rented out. He subsequently en- 
gaged in the general merchandise business in Duncombe and after 
one year in this line of activity sold his interests and again be- 
came identified with a livery enterprise which he has operated 
since that time. On June 2, 1912, his building was destroyed by 
fire and he has just completed a fine new barn and feed sheds on 
the corner of the principal street in Duncombe and owns besides 
his comfortable and modern home. In the village he has a wide 
acquaintance and many friends who respect him for his business 
attainments and for his upright life. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 227 

In March, 1890, Mr. Courtright was united in marriage to Miss 
Anna A. Royster, a daughter of C. W. and Amelia Royster. They 
became the parents of five children: Ward S., who passed away 
in i892;.]\Iildred B. ; Delmar R. ; Geneva Fern; and Clifford W. 

Fraternally Mr. Courtright belongs to the Alodern Woodmen of 
America and his wife is a member of the Royal Neighbors. He 
has been a substitute for the past seven years on the rural mail 
route and is active in various local enterprises. He is well known 
in republican politics and served as mayor of Buncombe for two 
years. He was elected constable of his township and although 
he did not qualify for the position is acting and fulfilling his duties 
ably in the absence of a substitute. He is interested in education 
and is now serving as a member of the school board, bringing to 
his duties in this capacity the same industry and intelligent activ- 
it}- which have marked his business and political career. 



W. C. HAVILAND. 



\\'. C. Haviland has contributed to the agricultural and busi- 
ness growth of Cooper townshii^, Webster county. Iowa, by his 
efficient and capalde management of one of the most extensive 
and prosperous fruit orchards in the state. His business is a 
natural outgrowth of his father's, who in partnership with a 
brother planted the first apple tree in Cooper township and was 
prominently identified with the nursery business during his life. 
Mr. Haviland was born in I'rinceton. Illinois, on Xovemljer 15, 
1852, and is a son of Andrew Jackson and Mary M. ( Co]l)y) Havi- 
land, the former a native of Dutchess county, Xew York, and the 
latter of Manchester, Vermont. Andrew Jackson Haviland was 
born October 20, 1820, and spent his early life in his native state. 
In 1842 he went to Chicago and worked at his trade — that of 
millwright — for a number of years. He came to Princeton, Illi- 
nois, from Chicago, and followed the same line of occupation. 
He had learned his trade in the early '30s in New York and was 
known in the various cities in which he resided as an expert work- 
man. He later went into the contracting business at Princeton 
and was successful in that line of work until 1855. He was mar- 
ried in Elgin, Illinois, and in 1855 established his residence in 
Iowa, buying one hundred and sixty acres in Webster county. He 



228 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

went into the nursery business and in i860 built a home in Fort 
Dodge, where he resided and continued in the Hne of occupation 
with which he was connected since his coming to the state. He 
was one of the first settlers north of Fort Dodge and he and his 
brothers made the first permanent location in this section. He 
was the pioneer horticulturist and nurseryman in the northwest- 
ern part of Iowa and carried on an extensive trade in this line in 
conjunction with one of his brothers. In the fall of 1855 this 
brother made a trip back to Princeton, Illinois, and purchased and 
brought to Iowa the first apple trees which were ever set out in 
the state. He made the journey with ox teams and was the pio- 
neer in what afterward became a great and flourishing industry. 
He was one of the prominent fruit growers in this section of the 
country and for years served as president of the State Horticul- 
tural Society. His picture now hangs in an honored place in the 
horticultural room in the state capital. The father of our subject 
continued in the nursery business at his original location in I'ort 
Dodge until 1872, in which year he sold out his ])lace there and 
bought the property where the North l-'loral Company now 
stands. Here he operated a small enterprise and continued there 
until his death, which occurred on March 9, 1888. His wife sur- 
vived him a number of years, dying on the 9th of March, 1901. 
Mrs. Haviland was a sister of Myra Bradwell, who was the foun- 
der of the Chicago Legal News and had the distinction of being 
the first woman to ask to be admitted to the bar. She was a cul- 
tured and educated woman and had passed her legal examination 
l)ut was refused admittance on account of her being married. She 
educated a young lady, however, and succeeded in gaining the hit- 
ter's admittance to the bar. W. C. Haviland is one of four chil- 
dren born to his parents. The others are : Perry A., born in Iowa, 
who is now a civil engineer and county surveyor of Alameda 
county, California, where he is working for the government ; Mrs. 
Mary E. Humphrey, who resides in Sioux City, Iowa; and Mrs. 
Lucy J. Black, whose home is at Parshall, Colorado. 

W. C. Haviland w'as reared in Iowa and educated in the public 
schools of Fort Dodge. He supplemented his primary course by 
a period at the Iowa State Agricultural College at Ames, Iowa, 
and later studied business methods in a commercial college at 
Des Moines. Upon finishing his education he went to Chicago, 
where he accepted a position as actuary, examining insurance 
companies for the state of Illinois. His office was located at 206 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 229 

La Salle street and he was prosperous in this line of occupation 
for one year. At the end of that time he returned to Iowa and 
went into the general mercantile business at Manson, where he 
conducted a store with gratifying success for one year. He then 
came to Fort Dodge and engaged in the l)uying and selling of 
grain in partnership with his cousin and uncle. This phase of his 
activity extended over one 3'ear and at the end of that time the 
three partners went to Colorado, where they operated an exten- 
sive sheep ranch twenty miles northeast of Colorado Springs. 
They there remained from 1875 until 1876, returning in the lat- 
ter year to Fort Dodge. Mr. Haviland then started a notion 
store, which was located where the Plymouth Clothing Store 
now stands, and was successful in this line for one year. He 
eventually sold out and became associated with his father as a 
traveling salesman. The state of Iowa was at that time still 
sparsely settled and Air. Haviland can remember driving for days 
at a time without seeing a single house. He continued working 
in the interests of his father until 1879, in which year he asso- 
ciated himself with H. C. Bradwell, of New York city, in a whole- 
sale nursery business. They purchased one hundred and sixty 
acres, which constitutes the farm upon which Mr. Haviland 
now lives in Cooper township, and set out fruit trees. They were 
successful from the beginning and soon had extensive interests in 
orchard jjropertv in Iowa. They owned four hundred acres near 
Humboldt, and their Inisiness became more important every 
year. In the fall of 1885 they shipped out two million apple 
trees to markets all over the United States. They continueil 
together until looo, in whicli year the |)artnership was dissolved. 
Mr. Haviland coiuiiuied in the nursery business alone, operating 
in a smaller way. He is now engaged entirely in the growing 
and selling of fruit and owns one of the best orchards in the state. 
He has one hundred and forty acres of land, planted almost en- 
tirely in apples. He is known as an expert in anything pertaining 
to the planting and care of fruits and to his efficient and intelli- 
gent methods of labor he owes his success. Most of his apples 
he ships to the Minneapolis markets and in the fall of 1912 sold 
sixteen carloads in that city. 

On March 26, 1884, Mr. Haviland was united in marriage to 
Miss Mary Martin, a daughter of David E. and Clara (Reeve) 
Martin, the former of New York and the latter of Massachusetts. 
David Martin came to Illinois in pioneer times and worked at his 



230 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

trade as shoemaker in Princeton. He later engaged in the real- 
estate business and became prominent in politics, serving with 
efficiency and ability as sheriff of Bureau county. He lived in 
Princeton until his death, in April, 1903. His wife survived him 
for four 3'ears, dying in January, 1907. To Mr. Haviland"s first 
marriage was born one child, Andrew J., whose birth occurred 
on December 16, 1885, and who is now living in Des Moines, 
Iowa, where he is operating a tree surgery business. The first 
Mrs. Haviland died on December 16, 1903, after an illness of two 
years. On September 16. 1906. our subject was again married, 
his second union being with Mrs. Rowena (Angier) Barber, a 
daughter of Charles and Sarah (Smith) Angier, natives of Xew 
York. Mrs. Haviland's father was among the early settlers of 
Iowa and locatetl in the western part of the state at Garnavillo. 
where the wife of our subject was born. He was a carpenter by 
trade and worked at this line of occupation until 1864, when he 
moved to Storm Lake, Iowa_. and followed the same line until 
1893. I'l t'l'^t year he went to Tennessee and resided in that state 
until his death, in February, 1897. His wife passed away in 
1890. 

In politics Mr. Ha\iland is republican but has never sought 
public office. He and his wife affiliate with the Baptist church 
and are active religious workers. Judged by every standard Mr. 
Haviland has been a successful man. The work he does he does 
well, accomplishing his pros])erity by a thorough knowledge of 
every aspect of his business, by personal super\ision and atten- 
tion to its details and by practical and intclligcnl labor. 



G. F. SPRIXGER. 



G. F. Springer is successfully engaged in the cultivation of 
one hundred and ten acres of land located on section 34, Roland 
township, Webster county. Iowa. He was born in Stark county, 
Illinois, July 30. i860, and is a si n of David and Marv Catherine 
(Chandler) Springer. l)oth cf whom were natives of Ohio. The 
father was of Pennsylxania Dutch ancestry and when a child re- 
moved to Illinois with his parents who settled in Stark county. 
In 1875 lie came to Iowa, making the journey by wagon and 
being eleven days on the road. Upon reaching this state he set- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 231 

tied near Paton, Greene CDuntw on wild land which he improved 
and where he continued to reside until 1882. He then removed 
to \\'ebster county and there located on unimproved land on sec- 
tion 34, Roland township. That .property he improved with good 
buildings and there he continued to live until the time of his 
death, which occurred in ]\Iarch, 1909. During his residence in 
Iowa he acquired a considerable amount of land, but at the time 
of his death he had disposed of all his real estate except sixty 
acres, on which property his widow still lives. They were the 
parents of si.x children : James H., deceased ; Marion, a resident 
of Roland township; G. F., the subject of this review; Christina 
Elizabeth, the wife of \V. A. Young and residing in Fort Dodge, 
Iowa ; Elmer, who is operating the old homestead ; and Martha Luella, 
deceased. 

G. F. Springer was reared at home and receix'ed his education 
in Stark county, Illinois, and Greene county, Iowa. He remained 
under the parental roof and was eiigaged in work on his father's 
farm until he was twenty-six years of age. He then purchased 
a farm located on section 34 in Roland township. The land at 
that time was without any improvements and since his residence 
on the property Mr. Springer has improved it with all necessary 
buildings and has brought the farm to a high state of cultiva- 
tion. He now owns one hundred and ten acres and in his farm- 
ing operations he has met w ith gratifying success. 

In 1887 Mr. Springer was united in marriage to Miss Martha 
.\mine Jackson, a daughter of Andrew and Lydia (Cooper) 
Jackson. The father was a native of New York and the mother 
of Ohio. They came to Illinois at an earl\- date and. in 1881. re- 
mo\-ed to Iowa and located on an unini])ro\-ed farm, one mile 
northwest of Gowrie. where they remained until i8(ji. at which 
time they removed to Lake \'iew. Sac county, Iowa, and there 
spent the remaining years < f their 'ives. The mother died in 
1907 and the father in iijii. .Mrs. Jackson had ])reviouslv mar- 
ried William Karr and to that union four children were born: 
Merritt Lee, a resident of Lake Yiew, Iowa; David W., of Kan- 
sas; Maud, the wife of D. A. Gillis of Creston. Illinois: and Laura. 
deceased. To Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Jackson four children were 
born: Wilmulh Celia. deceased: Martha .\mine. the wife of tlie 
subject of this sketch; John W.. a resident of Lockhart. Minne- 
sota ; and Melville, who makes his home in Lake View, Iowa. Mr. 
and Mrs. G. F. Springer are the parents of three children : Vin- 



232 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

nie Grace, who died at the age of nine years; IMaudie Mae, a grad- 
uate of the Gowrie high school; and Clarence Franklin, who is 
attending the public schools. 

Mr. Springer is affiliated with the republican party and has 
served as trustee of Roland township for one year. He has also 
been in the office of school director for two or three years. He 
is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America of Gowrie and 
he and his wife are members of the Congregational church. Mr. 
Springer is an enterprising, successful farmer, and a man well 
respected in the community in which he lives. 



THOMAS F. SIMS. 



Thomas F. Sims, one of the organizers and cashier of the 
I'armers Savings Bank, takes high rank among the business men 
of Duncombe by reason of his efficiency and enterprise, which 
enable him to carry to a successful issue anything he undertakes. 
A native of Mitchell county, his birth occurred in Orchard on 
August 28, 1873, his parents being Daniel and Bridgett (Gibbons) 
Sims. They were born and reared in Ireland, whence the father 
emigrated to the United States in his early manhood, first locat- 
mg in Illinois. I'rom there he removed to Mitchell county, this 
state, locating at Orchard, where for many years he held the 
position of section foreman on the Illinois Central Railroad. He 
resided in Orchard until his death, which occurred in August, 
1906, his energies being devoted to railroading. He was sur- 
vived b}- the niDther, who passed away in 1908. 

Reared at home. Thomas F. Sims began his education in the 
public schools of his native town and completed it in Cedar Val- 
ley Seminary, at Osage, this state. He subsequently learned 
telegraphy and when ciualiticd for a jjosition entered the enijiloy 
of the Illinois Central Railroad, remaining in their service until 
1901. He was made station agent, and his last appointment in 
this capacity was at Duncoml)e. He resigned his position in 1901 
and in June of that year bought out the general mercantile estab- 
lishment of Lundy & Son. This was his first venture in com- 
mercial pursuits, but he is a practical man of good judgment and 
keen discernment in matters of business and made a success of 
the undertaking. Disposing of his store in the spring of 1908. he 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 233 

engaged in the banking business and in October, 191 1, organized 
the Farmers Savings Bank, with a capital stock of fifteen thou- 
sand dollars. It is one of tlie well established thriving financial 
institutions of the state, its officials all being reputable business 
men of reliable methods and recognized standing. William Mal- 
Jinger is president : E. T. Davidson, vice president : and Mr. 
Sims, cashier. 

In August, 1901, Mr. Sims was married to Miss Rose Latta, a 
daughter of Johnson and Elizabeth Latta, and to them have been 
born three children: Roland, who is eight years of age; Johnson, 
who has passed the fourth anniversary of his liirth ; and Florence, 
who has passed her second birthday. 

Mr. and Mrs. Sims are communicants of the Roman Catholic 
church, and fraternally he is a member of the Knights of Colum- 
bus, Catholic Order of F'oresters and Modern Woodmen of 
America. His allegiance in matters ])olitic he accords to the 
democratic party, and he has on se\eral occasions been called 
to public office. For seven years he held the office of city treas- 
urer, meeting the responsibilities of his position in a highly com- 
mendable manner, while he ser\'ed with ecjual efficiency as mayor. 
Mr. Sims is a man of fine discernment, keen discrimination and 
unfaltering purpose, all of which are manifested in his care- 
fully considered plans and well organized methods of procedure 
in his business transactions. Although he is conservative in his 
methods he has too much confidence in his foresight and powers 
of organization to make him unduly cautious; at the same time 
he does not overestimate his ability as is evidenced by the orderly 
progress he has made in his business career. 



GEORGE W. MASON. 



Nature seems to iiave intended that in the evening of life man 
.shall enjoy a periofl of rest. At an early age he is fired with the 
ambition, the zeal and the courage of youth ; to these, in time, 
are added the experience and sound judgment of mature man- 
hood; and then, if labor is intelligently directed, success is cer- 
tain, enabling the individual in his later years to ])ut aside the 
more arduous cares of earlier manhood. Such has been the record 
of George W. Mason, who is living retired, in Fort Dodge, his 



234 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

home being at Xo. 902 First a\'enue, South. He was born in 
Canandaigua, Ontario county, Xew York, July 18, 1838, and is a 
son of Dennison R. and Mary (Brandt) Mason, who were also 
natives of the Empire state. The father was reared upon a farm 
in Ontario county. New Y'ork, and was a son of Samuel and Han- 
naii (Herindeen) Mason. Samuel Mason was a native of Massa- 
chusetts and made farming his life work. Both he and his wife 
were of the Quaker faith and they died within the same week, in 
May, 1842, when well advanced in years. They had five chil- 
dren, Dennison R., Gardner, Selinda. Mercy and Mary. The 
maternal grandfather of our subject was Mason Brandt, who was 
born at Kinderhook, Xew York, and married Phoebe Knapp. The 
latter had been adopted by the Chapin family at Canandaigua. 
which family had charge of the treaties and the payment of six 
Indian natidus there. Mason I'.randt was of Holland Dutch 
descent and was a soldier in the \\'ar of 1812. He made farming 
his life work and became, in time, the owner of one of the best cul- 
tivated tracts of land in liis ])art of the state. Both he and his 
wife died in tlie east. tJie former at the age of fifty-eight years 
and the latter when eighty-seven years of age. They were the 
parents of six children, Alexander, Samuel, George, Mary. Betsy 
Elizabeth and Laura. 

D. R. Mason was reared on a farm in Ontario county, Xew 
York, and later became a lumlierman of Grand Rapids, Wiscon- 
sin, and of Chip|)ewa I'alls, in the same state. The last ten years 
of his life were spent in Monroe county. X'cw York, where he 
died in 1883 at the age of eighty-seven years. He was originally 
a Quaker but later he Ijecame identified with the Congregational 
church. Tn liis family were six children, five of whom lived to 
maturity: Hannah E.. of Fairport, Xew York: Samuel, deceased: 
George \\'.. of this review; Harvey, of Beatrice, X'ebraska; Ben- 
jamin F., deceased ; and Byron, who died at the age of four years. 
George W. Mason was twelve years of age when he left Ontario 
county, Xew York, and accompanied his parents to \N'isconsin, 
where he was reared to manhood. He acquired his education in 
the Iieart of the lumber woods of that state and in early life be- 
came a lumberman, which occupation he followed from 1850 until 
1864. He was a lad of only twelve years when he thus began to 
earn his living and he has since been dependent upon his own 
resources for a livelihood. In 1864, he returned to New York 
and lived in Monroe county until iSy2. when he came to Fort 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 235 

Dodge, Iowa, and was tliere engaged in the grocery business in 
partnership with his brother Benjamin for eighteen months. At 
the end of that time he turned iiis attention to the hve-stock busi- 
ness, handling both cattle and hogs for a time. For thirty-one 
years he conducted a lumber Inisiness in which he is still inter- 
ested. His brother Benjamin passed away in 1902. While Mr. 
Mason still has financial connections with the lumljer tratlc he 
leaves the management of his business largely to others and has 
practically retired. He is enjoying well earned rest for his suc- 
cess followed earnest, persistent, indefatigable effort and straight- 
forward dealing. He early grasped the eternal truth that indus- 
lr\- wins, and industry became the lieacon light of his life. 

On the 26th of December, 1872, George W. Mason married 
Miss Hannah O'Connell, a daughter of Richard and Margaret 
(Dobbyns) O'Connell. Mrs. Mason was born in Franklin county, 
New York, and her parents were natives of County Cork, Ire- 
land. While crossing the Atlantic to America, on the same ves- 
sel, her father and mother met for the first time and were mar- ■ 
ried in Malone, Franklin county, New York, where they lived 
until called to their final rest. They were farming people, well 
known in the community, \\ here they reared nine sons and a 
daughter, namely: Maurice D. : John G. ; William; Richard S. ; 
Edmund ; Hannah ; Daniel ; George P. ; and two who died in 
infancy. The paternal grandfather of Mrs. Mason was Maurice 
O'Connell. who married Nellie Kent and had six children, Mau- 
rice, John, Richard, Catherine, Betsy and Hannah. The maternal 
grandparents were Edmund and Margaret (Jeffrey) Dobbyns, 
who had six children, John, W^illiam, Ellen, Margaret, Betsy 
and Nora. To Mr. and Mrs. George W. Mason have been born 
three children but the eldest, Nellie, died when about five months 
old. The others are Georgia Anna and Margaret Mary, both 
graduates of Smith College at Northampton, Massachusetts. The 
elder is the wife of Edward Orne Damon, an able architect with 
headquarters in W^ashington, D. C, and they have a son, Mason 
Orne Damon. The younger daughter is the wife of John Flaire, 
Jr., of Fort Dodge, and they have one son, George Mason Haire. 
Mr. and Mrs. Mason are members of the Catholic church. George 
W^. Mason belongs to the Knights of Columbus, while his politi- 
cal allegiance is given to the republican party. Tie has been a 
leading spirit in the encouragement of industries and in bringing 
about public imprnvcnicnts which ha\c figured iiromiiiently in 



236 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

the development and growth of Fort Dodge. He was instru- 
mental in securing the building of the handsome Wahkonsa 
Hotel and he developed a large lumber industry here. His inter- 
ests have always been of a character that contributes to public 
prosperity. He early realized that there is no advancement in 
life without effort. Life afifords opportunities for physical, men- 
tal and spiritual development and in this country these oppor- 
tunities are ofYered to any who will embrace them. Humljle birth 
and poverty are no handicap to the American youth. Opportuni- 
ties, however, slip away from the sluggard and tauntingly play 
before the dreamer but surrender to the individual of high pur- 
pose, undaunted courage and indefatigable determination. The 
possession of the latter qualities has brought George W. Mason 
to a prominent and honored place among the successful and highly 
respected residents of Fort Dodge. 



OWEX DWYER. 



Owen Dwyer, who is associated with his brother in the cultiva- 
tion of a farm of a hundred and twenty acres in Douglas town- 
ship, has been identified with the agricultural development of 
Webster county from boyhood. He was born on tiie farm where 
he now lives on the 5th of July. 1873, and is a son of Thomas and 
.\nna (Bray) Dwyer, natives of Ireland. The father came to 
America in his early manhood and settled in New York state. 
From there he proceeded to Illinois and then went to St. Louis, 
where he was living at the opening of the Civil war. He en- 
listed in Company M, P'irst Missouri Cavalry, remaining in the 
service for three years. Upon receiving his discharge he came 
to Iowa and entered eighty acres of land in Douglas township, 
this county. In his eflforts to develop his farm he encountered 
the usual obstacles and discouragements that fall to the lot of 
the average pioneer. Despite his difficulties, however, he more 
than held his own and each year marked an improvement in his 
circumstances. He was subsequently able to buy an adjoining 
tract of forty acres, making his holding aggregate a hundred and 
twenty acres. The further improvement and cultivation of his 
property engaged his undivided attention until he passed away in 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 237 

1876. Tlie mother is still living at the age of sixty-three and con- 
tinues to make her residence on the homestead with her sons. 

Owen Dwyer has very little recollection of his father, as he 
was a child of only two and one-half years when he passed away. 
His boyhood and youth were passed on the home place, his edu- 
cation being acquired in the local schools. When old enough to 
become self-supporting, his text-books were laid aside and he went to 
work. For ten years, thereafter he was employed by various farmers 
in this vicinity, but at the expiration of that time he and his 
brother took charge of the home place, which is held in common 
by the motlier and children, the property never having been 
divided. They engage in diversified farming and stock-raising 
with very good success. They annually prepare about thirty- 
five head of hogs for the market and keep seven cows and eight 
head of horses. 

Owen Dwj^er is a devout member of the Roman Catholic 
church and fraternally is identified with the Knights of Columbus, 
being affiliated with the council at Fort Dodge. Politically he 
supports the democratic ticket and is now serving as township 
trustee and has been one of the school directors. Mr. Dwyer has 
proven to be an efficient public servant, discharging his duties 
promptly and faithfully, thus fulfilling the expectations of his 
friends and fellow townsmen, who gave him their support. 



HARLOW AIUNSON PRATT. 

Harlow Munson Pratt was born in Otho township, Webster 
county, Iowa, October 21, 1876. He is a son of Luther Herbert and 
Vergenia L. (Markham) Pratt. When he was about one year of age, 
his parents moved to Charlotte, Clinton county, Iowa. In 1886 they 
returned to Webster county, and the father engaged in farming. Here 
the son spent most of his boyhood, farming with his father. His early 
education was received in the village school at Charlotte, and later in 
the "Old Number One" school of Otho township. Then, in the win- 
ter of 1893, he attended Tobin College, and again in 1894, helping on 
the farm during the summer. In the fall of 1896, he entered Tobin 
College and graduated from the normal department with tlie class of 
1897. For two years he taught school, first in the Hudson school in 
Otho township, and then in the I-'laherty school in Douglas township. 



238 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

In 1899 'is entered tlie University of Iowa. Here he spent six years, 
graduating from both tlie college of liberal arts and tlie college of 
law. \\ hen at the uni\ersity he became interested in newspaper work, 
and held both the position of editor and manager of the Daily lowan 
He was also city editor of the Iowa Citizen for one year. 

On January i, 1902. he was married to Miss Margaret Allie To- 
bin, daughter of the late Professor T. Tobin. founder of Tobin Col- 
lege. Mrs. Pratt was bom at \'inton. Iowa. Marcii 5. 1879. With 
the founding of the college at Fort Dodge she removed to this city 
in 1892. She graduated from the college in 1895. and later took up 
commercial work, luitering the IiTvva State Normal School in the 
fall of 1899, she graduated the following summer. At different times 
she has been a teacher both in Tobin College and the I'urt Dodge pub- 
lic schools. During the year 1901 .she entered the University of Iowa, 
becoming a member of the same class as Mr. Pratt. Together they 
graduated in 1903, and while Mr. Pratt studied law, Mrs. Pratt took 
lip graduate work, receiving a Master's degree in 1905. the same year 
that Mr. Pratt received his degree from the college of law. In the fall 
of 1905 they became residents of the city of I'ort Dodge, and Mr. 
Pratt began the practice of law. 

Both he and Mrs. Pratt have identified themselves with the life of 
the city, and are meml)ers of a number of clubs and fraternal societies. 
F'or the past five years Mr. Pratt has held the office of secretary of 
tlie Fort Dodge Commercial Club. Both he and Mrs. Pratt are mem- 
bers of the Congregational church. Politically Mr. Pratt has always 
been a republican. 



kUFLS P. HUNri;i 



For many years Rufus P. Hunter figured as one of the enter- 
jjrising and prosperous agriculturists of Webster county and was, 
furthermore, know'n as a citizen of genuine worth, loyal to the 
principles of honorable manhood and ])rogressive citizenship. 
His death, therefore, was the occasion of deep regret to the many 
who were glad to call him friend. He was born in Botetourt 
county, Virginia, September 30. T838, his ])arents being Lewis 
C. and Rebecca (Linkioker) Hunter. The Hunter family comes 
of Scotch -English ancestry and the grandfather. Francis Hunter, 
was a prosperous pl.intcr of \'irginia. He was one of five broth- 




K. P. HUNTER 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 241 

ers who came to America and settled in that state. His son, 
Lewis C. Hunter, was born in tiie Old Dominion in 1799 and 
there resided until 1856, when he came to Iowa, settling in Ma- 
rion county, where he followed farming throughout the remain- 
der of his life, passing away January 29. 1879. His wife, also a 
native of Virginia, died in Alarion county in August, 1882, and 
both were laid to rest there. In their family were five sons, of 
whom Rufus P. Hunter was the eldest. Joseph F., the second 
son, now deceased, served throughout the Civil war as a mem- 
ber of the Thirty-third Iowa Volunteer Infantry. Samuel L. is 
engaged in the milling and machiner}- business at Swan, Iowa. 
Edward died in his youth. Albert L., who completes the family, 
resides in Lincoln county, Kansas. 

Rufus P. Hunter attended a private school in Virginia, acquaint- 
ing himself with those branches of learning which usually con- 
stitute the public-school curriculum. He came with his parents 
to Iowa, making the trip by wagon, and remained under the 
parental roof until twenty-seven years of age. For about six 
years thereafter he engaged in farming in Marion county and 
subsequently came to \\'ebster county, settling on the tract of 
land whereon his remaining days were passed. His farm was 
situated on section 26, Roland township, and was an unim- 
proved tract when it came into his possession, but he con\erted 
the raw prairie into rich fields and developed an excellent farm 
property. He first built a small house and little stable, boarded 
the sides and covered it with a thatched roof. His first purchase 
comprised but eighty acres of land but to that he gradually 
added until his holdings embraced three hundred and si.xty acres. 
On tlie farm he ])lantcd trees, erected excellent liuildings and 
ecjuipped his place with all modern conveniences and accessories. 
For many years he was engaged extensively in general farming 
and in the raising of thoroughbred stock, formcrl)- making a 
si)ccialty of horses ;inil cattle but afterward giving his attention 
more largely to raising hogs. He also engaged in selling fruit 
trees and plants throughout this district and for three or four 
years conducted an implement business, having his heatlquarters 
on his farm. Flis sons are now engaged in the machinery busi- 
ness and also own and operate a threshing outfit. 

In Marion county, Iowa. March 22. 1866, Mr. Hunter was 
married to Miss Rachel Metcalf, who was born in Kosciusko 
county, Indiana, a daughter of Joseph and Sarah (Heck) Met- 

Vol. U— 14 



242 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

calf, both of whom were natives of that state. In 1854 they re- 
moved by wagon to Marion county, wiiere their remaining days 
were spent, tlie father passing away March 3, 1887, at the age of 
seventy-one, and the mother September 19, 1866, at the age of 
hfty-nine. In tlieir family were n-.ne children: Isaac, Daniel, 
Morris, Franklin, John, James. Elizalieth, Mrs. Rachel Hunter 
and Mary. Mrs. Hunter was educated in the common schools 
and remained with her ])arents imtil her marriage. She became 
the mother of eight chlidren: I'Lha E.len. who died in infancy; 
Charles \'., who resides at Callender, Iowa, and married Betsey 
Osterson, by whom he lias one child. Roy Harold; Warren D. ; 
Mosier D., of Roland township, who married Emma Osterson 
and has four children. Ruby I'rauces. Earl. Ernest James and 
Russell; Gran (). and W ilham \\ .. who operate the home farm; 
Maude I'earl. who is a graduate of Tobin College of I-'ort Dodge, 
Iowa, and is the wife of William Croker. of Toston, Montana, by 
whom she has three children. Rachel Marie, Frances May and 
William Rufus; and Grover C, who in the spring of 1912, married 
Miss Cora Kingry and li\es near the old home farm. 

In politics Mr. Hunter was a democrat and served as justice 
of the peace for twelve years. He was ever much interested in 
educational affairs and for many years served as a member of 
the school board, acting as its ])resi(lent for sixteen years. b"ra- 
ternally he was identified with the Woodmen of the World, be- 
longing to Callender Lodge. He was also prominent in Masonic 
circles, holding membership in Cjowric Lodge, F. & A. M. ; in the 
chapter and commandery at Fort Dodge : and in the Temple of 
the Mystic Shrine at Des Moines. All of his sons are members 
of the Modern Woodmen i;f America and of the Knights of 
Pythias, and Warren Hunter is also identified with the Odd 
Fellows and the Masons. 

Mr. Hunter may well have been called a self-made man, for he 
started out in life empty-handed and by his persistency and 
energ}' worked his way upward to a prominent place among the 
substantial farmers of Webster county. He merited well the 
success that came to him, for in all business transactions he held 
to the highest principles of honor and integrity. He was a man 
of generous imjiulses and never forgot the hospitable ways of 
the early pioneer. Xo one was ever turned from his door who 
sought aid or shelter. Throughout his life he was true to every 
duty, loyal to his country and devoted to his family and friends. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 243 

There was deep and sincere sorrow at his passing, when death 
called him on the 30th of June, 1912. Throughout his life he 
manifested elements and traits of character worthy of respect 
and the world is better for his having lived. 



FRANK CRAIG. Sr. 



Frank Craig, Sr., is operating a coal mine near Kalo, in Otho 
township, and has won success by the practical application of his 
knowledge and experience. He has been a miner since the begin- 
ning of his active career and for many years worked in the employ 
of others before becoming an independent owner. He is today 
numbered among the successful men of his district and his pros- 
perity is the natural result of his ability and specialized knowl- 
edge. Mr. Craig is a native of Wisconsin, having been born in 
this state in 1854, a son of Francis and Jane (Coultard) Craig, 
natives of England. The father came to America in 1850, set- 
tling in ^^'isconsin, where he engaged in mining, which had 
been his occupation in his native country. He was acti\e in the 
Wisconsin lead mines but finally abandoned his connection with 
this industry in favor of general agricultural pursuits. He pur- 
chased land which he inipro\ed and operated for many years, 
gaining success and ])rosperity as a general farmer and retain- 
ing his connection with this occupation until his death, which 
occurred in 1894. He had long survived his wife, who passed 
away in 1858. 

Frank Craig, Sr.. was reared and educated in Wisconsin and 
when he laid aside his books innnediatcly began working- in the 
lead mines. It was in 1878 that lie moved to Iowa, settling in 
Otlio township, where he worked in the coal mines until 1887. 
In that year he returned to AVisconsin and operated his father's 
farm for nine years, after which he again came to Iowa and located 
at Kalo. Here he again engaged in nn'ning. operating coal banks 
independently and is now opening up a new mine near his home. 

In the fall of 1882 Mr. Craig was united in marriage to Miss 
Eva Todd, a daughter of John and Lucy (Shipley) Todd, and 
they became the parents of nine children, all of whom are living 
but Blanche, who passed away in January. 1898. The others are 
Pearl. Belva. William, Lucv. Frank. Jr., Mvrtle, Elsie and Harold. 



244 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Politically j\Ir. Craig gives his allegiance to the democratic 
party and is one of the trustees of Otho township and at one time 
served as school director. He has a fine home in the village and 
some excellent town property, besides one hundred and four 
acres of land which he owns in partnership with ^\'illiam and 
George Lingard. He is prominent in the affairs of the Independ- 
ent Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias. He brings 
to the operation of his mining enterprises a practical equipment 
in the technical and mechanical details of the occupation, guided 
by business judgment and practical common sense. He has many 
friends in this section of Iowa, where his business ability is well 
known and where his personal qualities have gained for him the 
respect and esteem of all with whom he comes in contact. 



GEORGE R. PEARSONS. 

George R. Pearsons was a prominent figure in the development 
of Fort Dodge along material, moral and social lines, and among his 
fellow townsmen no man was more honored and respected. He was 
one of the pioneer capitalists and land owners here and throughout 
the period of his residence in this city contributed largely to general 
development and progress while promoting individual interests. He 
was born August 7, 1830, at Bradford, A^emiont. and came of a dis- 
tinguished line of New England ancestry. The family homestead 
being at Bradford. 

Tile youth of George R. Pearsons was passed on the old home- 
stead. At the age of twenty he removed to Hartford, Vermont, where 
he later married Miss Wealthy Porter, a niece of Judge John Porter, 
of Quechee. Mrs. Pearsons' death in 1880 is still sorrowfully 
recalled by the older residents of I-"ort Dodge. They became the 
parents of four children, including Louise, the widow of Senator Jona- 
than P. Dolliver. In 1882 Mr. Pearsons married Miss L. W. Waldron, 
a talented and highly educated woman, who survives him. 

While a resident of Vennont Mr. Pearsons spent several years 
in the employ of the Vermont Central Railroad Company and during 
nuich of his life was connected with railroad interests. Before his 
removal to the west he had filled such a variety of positions with the 
Vermont Central that he had thoroughly mastered the intricate de- 
tails of railroading. In 1865 he was attracted to Illinois by the oflfer 




GEORGE R. PEARSONS 



'^ := 



> X 




HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 245 

of employment as agent for the Illinois Central Railroad Company, 
with the management of its lands and properties, and from 1865 until 
1868 he lived at Livingston, Illinois, devoting his time and energies 
to the duties of his position. His ability and practical knowledge in 
railroading were valuable assets to him at a later period in his career. 
This was demonstrated years afterward when with six other resi- 
dents of Fort Dodge, all deeply interested in the progress of the city, 
he undertook to build, equip and operate the Fort Dodge & Fort 
Ridgely Railroad, which is now a part of the Minneapolis & St. Louis 
Railroad. 

On his removal to Fort Dodge Mr. Pearsons entered upon a long 
and honorable career which made him prominent in that city, win- 
ning him recognition as one of its most conspicuous and representa- 
tive men. He was closely associated with many activities here, of 
both a public and private character. Appreciative of his worth and 
ability his fellow townsmen several times called him to office and he 
was twice elected and served as mayor. His first tenn began in 1873 
and he was again called to that position in 1890. For many years 
he was a member of the school board and was always a leader in any 
enterprise which sought to promote the material, social and religious 
welfare of the city. He passed away on the 14th of July, 1904, and 
his death deprived Fort Dodge and the state of Iowa of a distinguished 
and representative citizen. 



ERICK BLOOM. 



A w^ell cultivated and highly improved farm of two liundred and 
eighty acres located on section 8, Dayton township, pays tribute 
to the agricultural skill and efficient management of Erick Bloom, 
a substantial farmer and stockman of Webster county. His birth 
occurred in Estrichland, Sweden, on August 17, 1858, and there 
he was reared to the age of nine years. His parents, Erick and 
Bertha (Parrison) Bloom, were born, reared and married in 
Sweden, where the father followed the carpenter's and wagon 
maker's trades until 1867. In tlic latter year he emigrated to the 
United States with his family, locating two miles north of Ridge- 
port, Webster county, where he engaged in farming for two years. 
At the expiration of that time he rented some river land in Har- 



246 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

din township, continuing his agricultural pursuits until he re- 
moved to Dayton. Here he passed away in 1881. The mother 
died seven years previously. The family of Mr. and Mrs. Bloom 
numbered five, of whom our subject is the eldest. The others, in 
order of birth, are as follows: Peter, a farmer in the vicinit}^ of 
BufYord, North Dakota; Christine, the wife of Andrew Hayberg, 
a farmer in the vicinity of Barnum, Minnesota; Emma, who mar- 
ried Isaac Anderson of Burlington, Iowa ; and Celia, the wife of 
Albert Whiteman, who is a farmer at Pine Blufifs, Wyoming. 

Erick Bloom began his education in his native land and com- 
pleted it in the district schools of Iowa. At the age of twelve 
years he became a wage earner, beginning as a farm hand, but 
later he worked in the coal mines at Lehigh for a time. Although 
he worked out in tlie summer he passed his winter months at 
home until he was twenty-four, when he began farming as a 
renter in Dayton township. He followed this for seven years, 
meeting with such lucrative returns that in INIarch, 1891, he was 
able to buy two hundred and forty acres of land that formed the 
nucleus of his present homestead. Tiie next year he removed 
to his farm and has ever since resided there. He is a most indus- 
trious man and energetically applies himself to anything he under- 
takes. As he directs his activities with intelligence and unusual 
foresight and sagacity he has prospered and has increased his 
holdings b}^ the addition of another forty acres, his farm now em- 
l)racing two hundred and forty acres of land, all of which is under 
cultivation and in a high state of productivity. In 1893, Mr. Bloom 
built his residence, which is a very comfortable and attractive 
farm house, and at various times he lias installed such modern 
conveniences and appliances on his place as are consistent with 
the spirit of progress he has at all times manifested in his busi- 
ness. In connection with general farming he raises a good grade 
of stock which he feeds for market, and this is also proving a 
lucrative undertaking. 

In 1886, Mr. Bloom was united in marriage to Miss Alice Dowd, 
a daughter of William V. and Clarissa Dowd, pioneers of Day- 
ton township. The father, who was a native of Ohio, of Irish ex- 
traction, came to Iowa in 1854, locating in Madison county. The 
following year he came to Dayton, locating on a farm on section 
21 of this township, where he resided until his death in June, 
1900. The mother is still living and continues to reside on the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 247 

farm. She was a widow when she married ]\Ir. Dowd, lier first 
husband having been Albert Corbin. Four children were born 
to Mr. and Mrs. Dowd, of whom Airs. Bloom is the eldest, the 
others are as follows : \\'illiam W. and Clara F., twins, the former 
living at home with his mother and the latter the wife of Edward 
Putzke, a farmer living east of Dayton; and Amanda, the wife of 
William Chapman, a ditch, tile and cement contractor of Sac 
City, Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Bloom have four children : William 
v., who is twenty-four, living at home and assisting his father 
with the work of the farm; Alaude, who is twenty-two, also at 
home; Dorothy Iwana, who was born on January 8, 1908; and 
Violet Bernice, whose birth occurred on the 30th of December, 
1910. The son, William V., is a member of the Knights of 
Pythias. 

Mr. Bloom is republican in his political views and has been a 
member of the district school board e\er since he located here, 
more than twenty years ago. He is highly esteemed in the com- 
munity, where he has ever manifested the highest integrity in his 
business transactions and has contributed his share in promoting 
its development and progress. 



GEORGE WILLIAM FORTNEY. 

George \\ illiam Fortney, one of the representative and sub- 
stantial agriculturists of Webster county, owns and operates a 
well improved farm of two hundred acres on sections 18 and 19, 
Otho township. His birth occurred in Georgetown, Wisconsin, 
on the 28th of October, 1865, his parents being David and Isabelle 
(Todd) Fortney, the former a native of Ohio and the latter of 
England. The paternal grandfather of our subject followed 
farming in Wisconsin and also worked in the lead mines of that 
state. Flis demise occurred at Bigpatch, Wisconsin. David Fort- 
ney accompanied his parents on their removal to Wisconsin in 
the '40s and in that state obtained his education and was reared 
to manhood. He assisted his father in the work of the home 
farm and subsequently embarked in the mercantile business at 
Georgetown, Wisconsin, conducting an establishment of that 
character there until iR^jS. In that vear he came to Iowa and 



248 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

took up a tract of land in Buena Vista county but soon abandoned 
the place and came to Webster county, believing that he could 
do better here. He purchased one hundred and sixty acres of 
land on the present site of the town of Otho, paying twelve dol- 
lars an acre for the property. He improved the same and was 
engaged in its operation until 1887, when he rented it to his sons. 
During the remaining years of his life he conducted a general 
store, devoted considerable attention to live-stock interests and 
also did an extensive grain business. His demise occurred on the 
17th of January, 1901, after a residence of almost a third of a 
century in this county, and the community lost one of its most 
respected and enterprising citizens. His wife was called to her 
final rest November 23, 1901. 

George William Fortne}', who was the third in order of birth of 
twelve children, obtained his education in Webster county and 
was here reared to manhood. When a youth of fifteen he took 
charge of his father's farm, operating the same until 1893. Dur- 
ing the following year he operated a ditching machine and then 
spent a year in cultivating the McBain farm in Elkhorn town- 
ship, which he rented. Subsequently he purchased one hundred 
and sixty acres of land in Pocahontas county, Iowa, operating it 
for two years and then leasing the property and returning to 
Otho. In 1899 he disposed of the tract and bought the old home 
farm in Otho township as well as an additional tract of forty-eight 
acres. The house in which he now resides was erected by his 
father but he has improved and remodeled the same consider- 
ably. His landed holdings embrace about two hundred acres of 
farm property on sections 18 and 19 and about six acres laid out 
in town lots. In the cultivation and improvement of his property 
he has been engaged during the past thirteen years, and the suc- 
cess which has attended his efforts as an agriculturist is the 
merited reward of industry, energy and good management. He 
owns an interest in a farm near Livermore and also in one, foiu- 
miles west of Badger, holding the deed to both properties. He 
was, formerly, a stockholder in the Fort Dodge Pump Company 
and also in the Farmers Elevator Company of Otho, acting as presi- 
dent and director of the latter. 

On the 28th of November, 1887, Mr. Fortney was married to 
Miss Martha Philips, a daughter of Oliver and Mary (Robinson) 
Philips, both of whom were born in Syracuse, New York. I\[r. 
and Mrs. Fortney have four children, as follows: Grace, the wife 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 249 

of Guy Rake, a telegraph operator living in W'ibanx. Montana ; 
Arthur, who married IMaud Schnurr and resides on a farm in Otho 
township, Webster county; Florence, the wife of Stephen Wood- 
bury, who resides on a farm in Otho township; and Clyde, who is 
at home. 

George William Fortney votes the prohibition ticket, believing 
that the liquor traffic is one of the worst evils with which this 
country has to contend. He has served as trustee of Otho town- 
ship and also acted in the capacity of justice of the peace, dis- 
charging his duties in both connections in a highly commendable 
and satisfactory manner. Fraternally, he is identified with the 
Modern Woodmen of America. His wife is a member of the 
Royal Neighbors. His religious faith is indicated by his mem- 
bership in the Methodist church, to which his wife and children 
also belong. He possesses those sterling traits of character which 
in every land and clime win confidence, respect and good-will, 
and by the consensus of public opinion he is accorded a promi- 
nent place among the valued citizens of Otho township. 



PROFESSOR CHARLES V. FINDLAY. 

Professor Charles V. Findlay is a member of the firm of Monk 
& Findlay, proprietors of Tobin College, at Fort Dodge. 
Throughout his life he has been connected with educational in- 
terests and has made that institution, of which he is now presi- 
dent, one of the strong educational centers of the middle west, 
holding to high standards at all times. He was born in De Kalb 
county, Illinois, September 12, 1866, and is a son of James A. and 
Olive !•". (Goodyear) Findlay, the former a native of Vermont 
and the latter of Ohio. The paternal grandfather, James Find- 
lay, was a nati\e of Scotland and made farming his life work. 
He came to America as a member of the British army in the 
War of 1812. His wife was Deborah (Allen) Findlay ami they 
were early settlers of De Kalb county, Illinois, with the devel- 
opment of which they were actively identified. They died there 
when well advanced in years, having fn the meantime reared a 
large family comprising James, Margaret, Lavina, Mary, George 
and Orin. The maternal grandfather of Professor Findlay was 
Lloyd Goodyear, who married Mary Lepper. Both were born 



250 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

and reared in New York, but after their marriage moved to Ohio. 
From there they came westward to Illinois and settled in De 
Kalb county, where they passed away at an advanced age. In 
their family were eight children. Henry. Almira. Nelson, John, 
\\'illiam, Franklin, 01i\-e and James. 

James A. Findla\' was reared in the Green Mountain state and 
there learned the caqjenter's and joiner's trades. He made his 
wa}' \vest\\ard to Illinois prior to the Civil war, settling near Paw 
Paw. in De Kalh county, where he engaged in carpentering. In 
1871 he came to Iowa, taking up his abode in Clay county, where 
he secured a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres, which he 
culti\ated and improved for a number of years. In 1877 he re- 
moved to \\ cbster county, settling in Otho township, where he 
purchased a farm of three hundred and twenty acres. This he 
also improved, greatly enhancing the fertility of the fields, and the 
place is still in the possession of the famil}'. The father, however, 
has retired. remo\ing to Fort Dodge, where he and his wife ha\e 
now li\ed for about fourteen jears. He held various township 
offices and has been prominent locall)-, his efforts being a potent 
factor in general development and improvement. To him and 
his wife were born three sons: George F., born October 23, 1864, 
deceased; Charles V., born September 12, 1866: and J. Lloyd, born 
August 5, 1868, a resident of Otho townshi]). 

Professor Findla\- was about five years of age when brought 
to Iowa and upon his father's farm in Webster county he was 
reared, early becoming familiar with the duties and labors which 
fall to the lot of the agriculturist. He attended the district school 
and supplemented his ]irfliminary education by a course in the 
normal school at Shenandoah, Iowa. He taught both previous 
and subsequent to that period and later entered the Highland 
Park College, from which he was graduated in 1891. From the 
beginning he demonstrated his ability as an educator and in the 
year of his graduation he was elected county superintendent of 
schools of Webster county, to which position he was several times 
reelected, serving in all for four terms or eight years. Since then 
he has been continuously engaged in college work, being con- 
nected W'ith Tobin College, an incorporated institution of which 
he is the president. This school has an enrollment in all of its 
departments of about five hundred students. Excellent work is 
being done under able educators, for a high standard is maintained 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 251 

in the personnel of the school, in the curriculum and in the 
methods of instruction. 

On June 29, 1899, Mr. Findlay was married to Miss Mabel 
Southwick, the daughter of Franklin B. and Cornelia (Sheffield) 
Southwick. She was born at \\'ells, Minnesota, while her parents 
were natives of Wisconsin and are now living at Santa Barbara, 
California. Of their children, two are living: Mrs. Findlay; and 
Mrs. Eva (Southwick) ^\"alden, of Santa Paula, California. Pro- 
fessor and ]ilrs. F^indlay have two sons: James Franklin, born July 
25. 1900: and Maurice Southwick, born January 29, 1907. Pro- 
fessor Findlay is a member of the Congregational church and his 
wife of the Church of God. His political allegiance is given to the 
republican party and in 1910 and 191 1 he served as a member of 
the city council, but otherwise has never sought nor desired pub- 
lic office outside of the strict path of his profession. He has all 
of the qualifications of an able educator, is a good disciplinarian, 
possesses e.xecutive force and administrative direction, and at the 
same time imparts readily and concisely to others the knowledge 
which he has acquired. He has made the school a part of the city 
and one which has had commendable influence in. the educational 
interests and the development of this part of the state. 



WILLIAM MURRY WILDMAN, M. D. 

Dr. William Murry Wildman has become recognized as a highly 
efficient representative of the medical profession during the six 
years of his practice in Fort Dodge. His birth occurred in Hardin 
county, this state, on the 12th of December, 1874, his parents 
being William and Asenath (Adams) Wildman. The father, who 
was born in Clinton county, Ohio, on the 30th of March, 1847, 
came to Iowa with his parents, Seneca and Jane (Hadley) Wild- 
man, who located on a fai^m in the vicinity of Iowa Falls, Hardin 
county, in 1859. There he met and subsequently married Miss 
Adams, a direct descendant of John and John Quincy Adams. The 
mother was born in Yadkin county, North Carolina, and is a 
daughter of Joel Adams, bur man)' years Mr. Wildman was en- 
gaged in agricultural pursuits in Hardin county, but he retired 
from active work fifteen years ago. and now he and the mother 
are living in F'alacios, Texas. 



252 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Dr. W'ildman was reared on the farm where he was born, and 
attended the district schools of Hardin county until he was a 
youth of seventeen years. His parents were of Quaker extrac- 
tion and have always adhered to that faith, so in 1891 he was 
sent to New Providence Academy at New Providence, Iowa. He 
completed the course there at the age of eighteen, and then en- 
tered Penn College, also a Quaker institution, at Oskaloosa. He 
left college in 1895 and taught in a district school in the \-icinity 
of his home for a year. z\t the expiration of that period he re- 
sumed his studies, and was graduated in 1897 with the degree 
of Bachelor of Science. He subsequently engaged in the mercan- 
tile business in Eldora, Hardin counlv, until the spring of 1903. 
In the fall of that year he went to Iowa City, this state, and ma- 
triculated in the medical department of. the Iowa State Univer- 
sity, taking the homeopathic course. He was awarded the degree 
of M. D. on the 13th of June, 1906, and the following day he came 
to Fort Dodge and opened an office at 516^ Central avenue. He 
was located there for two years, but when the First National Bank 
building was completed in 1908 he removed to his present cjuar- 
ters, being one of the first tenants in the building. He has a very 
pleasant and appropriately furnished suite, at No. 406, and 
through his general capaliility and efficiency has succeeded in 
building up an excellent practice. Dr. W'ildman is in every way 
highly qualified for the profession he has adopted, as he has many 
times manifested since locating here. He is a man of pleasing 
personality, resourceful and confident and is most conscientious 
in his devotion to the interests of his patients. 

Eldora, Iowa, was the scene of Dr. Wildman's marriage on the 
23d of May, 1901, to Miss Saidie Policy, a daughter of Joseph and 
Florence (Sheets) Polley, both deceased. The father was for 
many years engaged in farming in Hardin county, but in 1900 he 
retired to Eldora, and there he passed away in 1903. One child 
has been born to Dr. and Mrs. Wildman, Ruth Irene, whose birth 
occurred on the 9th of December, 1902. She is now a student of 
the Lincoln school, this city. 

Dr. Wildman is a member of the Quaker church of Hardin 
county, and Mrs. Wildman belongs to the Methodist Episcopal 
church of Eldora. Fraternally, he is affiliated with Fort Dodge 
Lodge, No. 248, A. O. U. W., and is grand medical examiner of 
this order for the state of Iowa. He also belongs to Fort Dodge 
Lodge, No. 306, B. P. O. E. : and Choctaw Tribe, No. 47. I. O. R., 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 253 

also of Fort Dodge. He maintains relations with his fellow prac- 
titioners through the medium of his connection with the Webster 
County Medical Society and the Iowa State and American Medi- 
cal Associations. In politics he is a progressive republican and 
served for two years as health officer of Fort Dodge. Dr. W'ild- 
nian has been very successful and in addition to his other interests 
has a very attracti\e home at 1328 l-'ifth a\enue. Xorth. He is 
a man of many admirable traits of character and is popular and 
highly esteemed both by the profession and laity and enjoys the 
confidence and regard of a large circle of friends. 



MARY J. STEVENS. 



One of the most efificient business women of \\'ebster county 
is Mary J. Stevens, who owns and successfully operates a farm 
located on section 13 of Douglas township, which was previously 
the property of her father. She is a native of New England, her 
birth having occurred in Richmond, Vermont, on the 19th of 
July, 1840, and a daughter of Socrates Greenleaf and Harriet 
(Jones) Stevens. The father was born in Henderson, Jefferson 
county, New York, on the 29th of April, 181 1, but he was reared 
and educated in the state of Vermont. There he also learned the 
machinist's trade, wdiich he followed for about three years and 
then turned his attention to agricultural pursuits. On the 13th of 
September, 1835, he was married to Miss Jones, who was born in 
Colchester, Vermont, on the i2tli of .\ugust, 1812. They passed 
the early period of their domestic life in the Green Mountain 
state, coming from there to Iowa in 1856. The\' first located in 
Oskaloosa, but after a year's residence there they removed to 
Webster county, and here the father acepiired the farm, now 
owned by our subject. This property, which is located west of 
the Des Moines river, was entirely uncultivated when it came into 
Mr. Stevens' possession, and he diligently devoted the remainder 
of his active life to its develojmient and improvement. Here both 
parents passed away, the mother's death occurring on the j(\ of 
May, 1888, and that of the father on the T4th of January, 1901. 
They were adherents of the Universalist faith, and his political 
support Mr. Stevens accorded to the democratic party. 



254 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Miss Stevens was a girl of fifteen years wiien she accompanied 
her parents on their removal to Iowa, where she has ever since 
made her home. Her education was begun in the schools of her 
native state and completed in Oskaloosa. After they removed to 
A\'ebster county she engaged in teaching, following this profes- 
sion for twenty-two terms. Her services then being required at 
home, she gave up her work and devoted herself to her parents 
during the remainder of their lives. She is a woman of more than 
average capability, and has a thorough understanding of farming 
and stock-raising, as is substantially evidenced by the appear- 
ance of her well kept fields and the condition of her stock. She 
exercises intelligence and good judgment in the direction of her 
interests and has prospered in her undertakings. The place is 
provided with an adequate equipment, the barns and outbuild- 
ings are substantially constructed and in good repair, while in 
1906 she replaced the old farm house with a modern residence, 
which is one of the largest and linest in the countv. Her present 
mode of living is in violent contrast to that of her girlhood, 
which was passed on the same farm but amid pioneer conditions, 
while she is now surrounded by all the comforts and conveniences 
of a modern civilization. Miss Stevens attends the various 
churches but has never identified herself with anv one denomina- 
tion. She has always been keenly interested in intellectual pur- 
suits and keeps closely in touch with the trend of the times, being 
thoroughly informed on all current topics, on which she has well 
defined views. 



ARCHIE D. McQUILKIN. 

Archie D. McOuilkin has for the past ten years been success- 
fully engaged in business at Fort Dodge as a dealer in furniture, 
carpets, drapery and queensware, and his establishment at No. 
817 Central avenue is artistic and attractive throughout. His 
birth occurred in \\'cstmoreland county, Pennsylvania, on the 
13th of January, 1864, his parents being Samuel and Ann Eleanor 
(Kerr) McQuilkin, who were likewise natives of the Keystone 
state. His paternal grandparents were Robert R. and Jane 
(Richey) McQuilkin. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 255 

Samuel McOuilkin, the father of our subject, was reared in 
Pennsylvania and followed farming throughout his active career. 
In 1866 he came west to Iowa, locating in Benton county, where 
he continued to reside until called to his final rest in 1878. He 
was widely recognized as a substantial and esteemed citizen of 
his community and ably served in the capacity of justice of the 
peace. In religious faith he was a Presbyterian. His widow, who 
is still living at the age of eighty-nine years, also belongs to that 
church. To them were born eleven children, six sons and live 
daughters, eight of whom grew to maturity, namely: Joseph K., 
who is a resident of Waterloo, Iowa ; Robert R., living in La- 
porte City, Iowa; Andrew, \vho has passed away; Belle, the wife 
of L. U. W'oodley, of Gait, Iowa; James L., who is deceased; 
Xanna, the wife of John W illmore, of Fort Dodge; Ella, who is 
deceased; and Archie D., of this review. 

The last named was but two years of age when his parents re- 
moved to Benton county, this state, and there attended the dis- 
trict schools in the acquirement of an education. When about 
fifteen }'ears of age he left the home farm and began clerking in 
a drug store at Laporte City, being thus employed for eighteen 
months, while subsequently he conducted a meat market there 
for four years. On the expiration of that period he went upon the 
road as a traveling salesman for a publishing concern, covering- 
Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois. Later he embarked in 
business at Burlington, Iowa, as a dealer in furniture, jewelry, 
carpets and queensware, there conducting an establishment of 
that character for ele\en years. In 1902 he came to Fort Dodge 
and, as above stated, has remained in business here to the pres- 
ent time. His store, comprising several floors, has forty-four 
thousand feet floor space or over an acre and is crowded with 
one of the most extensive and finest assortments of furniture, 
carpets, rugs, pictures and chinaware to be found in the state 
of Iowa. Mr. AlcOuilkin is accorded a large and well merited 
patronage, for he is a man of splendid business ability and keen 
discernment. He carries an attractive and artistic line of goods 
at reasonable prices and does everything in his power to please 
and satisfy his customers. 

On the 17th of June, 1889, Mr. McQuilkin was united in mar- 
riage to Miss Jennie Kline, a native of Pennsylvania and a daugh- 
ter of Elisha and Sarah Kline, who were likewise born in that 
state. They became early settlers of Blackhawk county, Iowa, 



256 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

and there spent the remainder of their hves. Elisha KHne and his 
oldest son, Alonzo, participated in the Civil war. Mrs. McQuil- 
kin was one of a family of two daughters and five sons, the others 
being as follows: Alonzo, Willis, Albert, \Villiam, Bo3'd and 
Mariette, who died in infancy. To Mr. and Mrs. McOuilkin have 
been born three children : Merope, who died at the age of two 
months; Marion, who passed away when two years old: and 
Marjorie, who is now twelve years of age. 

In his political views Mr. McOuilkin is republican, while fra- 
ternally he is identified with the Knights of Pythias and the 
Benevolent Protective Order of Elks. His religious faith is indi- 
cated by his membership in the Presbyterian church, to which his 
wife also belongs and of which lie is serving as president of the 
board of trustees. Through his enterprise he has won success 
in business and through his fidelity to upright principles he has 
commanded the respect and confidence of his fellowmen. 



MICHAEL F. HEALY 



Michael F. Healy, a Harvard man and also an alumnus of Michi- 
gan University, brought to the starting point of his career certain 
rare gifts including a strong personality, an excellent presence and 
marked strength of character. These, combined with a thorough 
grasp of the law and the ability to correctly apply its principles, have 
been the factors in his effectiveness as an advocate. He is now prac- 
ticing as a member of the firm of Healy & Healy, with offices at No. 
62oy2 Central avenue, Fort Dodge. He is a native of Lansing, Iowa, 
born April i, 1863, and comes of Irish ancestry. His paternal grand- 
father, Michael Healy, died in Ireland in 1845 when fifty-six years of 
age. His wife, Mrs. Eleanor Healy, afterward came to America and 
l>assed away in Lansing. Iowa, at the very advanced age of eighty- 
nine years. In their family were five children, Michael, Thomas F., 
Hannah Daley, Mary Sullivan and Nanna. After the death of her 
first husband Mrs. Healy became the wife of James Hinchon, and 
they had three children, Cornelius, John W. and Julia McGuough. 

The eldest child of the first marriage was Michael Healy, the father 
of Michael F. Healy, of this review. He was born in County Cork, 
Ireland, and left there when a boy of fifteen or sixteen years. Cross- 
ing the Atlantic he settled first in Massachusetts, working in the 




M. F. IIEALY 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 259 

mills there for a time, but on the ist of January, 1850, he enlisted for 
service in the regular United States anny, with which he remained 
for fi\e years. On the 14th of March, 1855, he wedded Catharine 
Murphy, who was also a native of County Cork, and a daughter of 
Patrick and Mary (McCarty) Murphy. Mr. Murphy was a farmer by 
occupation and both he and his wife lived to old age. Their children 
were: Sarah Stuart, of Newton, Massachusetts; Ellen Murphy; 
Hannah Taggart; Elizabeth McNamara; Patrick Murphy; and Catha- 
rine. 

Following their marriage Michael and Catharine (Murphy) Healy 
removed westward to Allamakee county, Iowa, where he followed 
farming for eight years and also served as county treasurer for four 
years. He then turned his attention to merchandising at Lansing, 
Iowa, and conducted his store until 1882, when he removed to Fort 
Dodge, where he engaged in the agricultural implement business for 
several years. In the meantime he purchased four hundred and eighty 
acres of land in Webster county in 1868. His judicious investments 
and liis bu.'^iness activity brought him a substantial measure of suc- 
cess and after retiring from the implement business he spent his re- 
maining days in the enjoyment of well earned rest to the time of his 
death, which occurred June 3, 19 10, when he was efghty-four years of 
age. His wife passed away June 5, 1908, when seventy-four years 
of age. Both were loyal members of the Catholic church. They had 
a family of nine children: Ella, who is the widow of Matthew Joyce; 
Mary, the widow of P. H. Vaughan ; .\nna; Michael F. ; Thomas D., 
who died January 15, 1910; William M. ; Elizabeth, who is in a con- 
vent in Philadelphia, engaged in the Drexel educational work of edu- 
cating the negroes; Robert, a partner of Michael; and Catharine. 

Michael F. Healy was reared in Lansing, Iowa, until nineteen 
years of age, and has since li\ed in Fort Dodge. He was a pupil in 
the public schools of his native city and in Notre Dame University at 
South Bend, Indiana, before entering Harvard University. His prepa- 
ration for the bar was made as a student in the law department of 
the University of Michigan and he was admitted to the bar on the 
1st of October, 1885. He at' once opened an office in Fort Dodge, 
where he has since remained in active practice. He throws him- 
self easily and naturally into an argument with the self-possession 
and deliberation which indicates no straining after effect. There is a 
precision and clearness in his statement, a ([uietness and strength 
in his argument which speak a mind trained in the severest school of 
investigation, and to whicli the closest reasoning is habitual and easy. 



260 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

On the 30th of June, 1891. Mr. Healy was married to iMiss Mary 
E. Kemdt, a daughter of Moritz and Mary (Nimsgern) Kerndt, of 
Lansing, Iowa. Mrs. Healy was born in that town while her father 
was a native of Saxon\^ Germany, and her mother of Alsace Lorraine. 
In 1856 they established their home in Lansing, where they still re- 
side. In their family were eight children, Gustav M., Charles M., 
William M., Mary E., Clara M., Anna, Moritz and Catharine. The 
paternal grandparents of Mrs. Healy were Mr. and Mrs. John Chris- 
tian Kerndt. The former died in Gemiany and the latter in Lansing. 
They had a large family, including Hemian, Gustav, W^illiam, Moritz, 
Julius, Clara, Haas, Emma Boeckh, and Mrs. Rieth. The children of 
the maternal grandfather were five in number: Mary Kerndt, Anna 
Kennedy, Emma Stowers, Mrs. W'uest, and Anna L'rmersbach. 

Mr. and Mrs. Healy have six children. Kerndt M., Thomas ]\I., 
Ruth, Margaret. Eleanor and Catharine. The parents are members 
of the Catholic church and Mr. Healy belongs to the Knights of 
Columbus, the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, the Knights of 
Pvlhias, the Arcanum, the Ancient Order of L'nited Workmen and 
the Sons of Herman. In politics he is an earnest democrat and is a 
recognized leader of the party, having served as chairman of the 
democratic state central committee in 1896 and 1897, yet he has ne\er 
sought nor desired office for himself, preferring to concentrate his 
energies upon his professional duties whereby the firm of Healy & 
Healy has become one of the leading law firms of Fort Dodge. 



PETER M. ^IITCHELL. 

One of the foremost business men of Fort Dodge a decade ago 
was the late Peter M. Mitchell, founder of The Mitchell Imple- 
ment Company, a thri\ ing enterprise of liie city, which stands as 
a monument to his unceasing diligence and energy. He was born 
at Marseilles, La Salle county, Illinois, on April 9, 1853, a son of 
Patrick and Anne (Kennedy) Mitchell. The father was a native 
of County Galway, Ireland, wdience he emigrated to the L'nited 
States with his family in the late '40s. He located in La Salle 
county, Illinois, and engaged in farming until 1855, when he re- 
moved to Webster county, Iowa, and resumed his agricultural 
pursuits in Badger township. His efforts met with good financial 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 261 

returns and lie subsequently retired to Fort Dodge, where he was 
hving at the time of his death. The mother is still living and now 
makes her home at 425 Xorth Ninth street, this city. 

Peter M. Mitchell was only a child of two years when his parents 
removed to Iowa and here he passed the remainder of his life. 
He began his education in the district schools of Badger town- 
ship and continued it in Fort Dodge high school, after which he 
became a student at Ames College, Ames, Iowa. He was soon 
compelled to lea\e college, owing; to the state of his health, and 
for ten years thereafter engaged in teaching in ^\'ebster county. 
In 1882 he withdrew from this occupation and went into the 
implement business with Clemmon L. Granger, wIkj is men- 
tioned elsewhere in this work. 'J'heir store was located on the 
public scjuare in the building now occupied by the Granger Com- 
pany. They were associated together for fifteen years, but at 
the expiration of that time, Air. ]\litchell withdrew from the busi- 
ness and founded The Mitchell Implement Company. This is a 
wholesale and retail establishment and is located at 601 to 611 
First avenue. South. It has prospered from its incipiency and 
is now ranked as one of the leading implement stores of the city, 
the controlling interest in the business still being in the posses- 
sion of Mr. jMitchell's heirs. He was president and manager of 
the company until the time of his death, and as he was a man of 
progressive methods, foresight and sagacity in the conduct of this 
enterprise he adopted a policy which commended him to the con- 
fidence of all with whom he had transactions and won him the 
cooperation of his patrons. In addition to his interest in this 
corporation, he had acquired (luite extensive and \aluable real- 
estate holflings in AX'ebster and adjoining counties of northwest- 
ern Iowa, and he was a stockholder in several local enterprises, 
among them the I'ort Dodge Light & Power Conqianw the Ole- 
son Land Company, the Alineral City Park Association, the Iowa 
Land & Loan Comi)any, and tlie F'irst National Bank, all highh- 
reputable and prosperous business enterprises. 

In Fort Dodge, on the 21st of January, 1884, Mr. Mitchell was 
united in marriage to Miss Sarah Furlong, a daughter of Richard 
and -Anna S. CRyan) Furlong. The parents were both natives 
of Maine but of Irish extraction. Mrs. Furlong's grandfather 
was born in Nova Scotia and her ancestors participated in the 
War of 1812. They were among the pioneer settlers of Webster 
county, where for a time Mr. Fnrli>iig engaged in farnu'ng. Later 



262 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

he withdrew from this occupation and coming to Fort I>odge 
opened a general mercantile store. He subsequently became as- 
sociated with J. M. Mulroney in the conduct of this establish- 
ment, but after tiiey dissolved partnership, Mr. Furlong located 
at II to 13 North Fifth street, the site now occupied by Furlong 
& Brennan, where he continued in business until his death in 1892. 
Mr. Furlong was twice married, his second union being with Miss 
Nora Moriarity, of Dubuque, Iowa, who died in 1899. Six chil- 
dren were born to ]\Ir. and Mrs. Mitchell, as follows: Marcia, 
who has been teaching in Minnesota, now at home; Anne, a for- 
mer teacher in a private school in Washington, D. C, and now 
connected with the public library at Fort Dodge ; Richard, who 
graduated from the law department of the Iowa State University 
with the class of 191 2; Alice, who is attending school in Milwau- 
kee; Granger, a member of the class of 1912 of Fort Dodge high 
school; and Katharine, also a student of the high school. 

The family are all communicants of the Roman Catholic church, 
as was likewise the father, and belong to Corpus Christi parish. 
Mr. Mitchell was a member of Fort Dodge Lodge, No. 306, B. P. 
O. E., and his political support he gave to the democratic party. 
He was always an active and earnest worker on behalf of his 
party and took a prominent part in local campaigns. He held a 
prominent position in the community and was numbered among 
the foremost representatives of the commercial fraternity of the 
city, in the progress and development of which he was one of the 
dominant factors. 



JOHN A. LINDBERG. 



John A. Lindberg, president of the Farmers State Bank nf Day- 
ton, has for many years been numbered among the foremost busi- 
ness men of Webster county, while he has occupied an equally 
prominent position in the public life of the community. He was 
born in Victoria. Kno.x county, Illinois, on the 29th of December, 
1850, and is a son of John and Christine (.\aronson) Lindberg. 
The parents were both natives of Sweden, the father having been 
born in 1815 and the mother in 1819. and there they were also 
reared and married. John Lindberg entered the service of his 
country in his early manhood, but as the future seemed to promise 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 263 

little or nothing in Sweden and he had heard wonderful stories of 
the possibilities afforded in America, he obtained a substitute and 
withdrew from the arm}- at tlie end of live years. Together 
with his wife and family he emigrated to the United States in 
1849, sixteen weeks having been spent on the water before they 
dropped anchor in the harbor of New York. They made their 
way inland to Victoria, Illinois, where the father engaged in 
farming until 1856. In October of tliat year the family again 
started w-estward, \\'ebster county being their destination on this 
occasion. The father first settled on what was supposed to be 
government land but later proved to be river land in Hardin 
township. In 1857 he preempted a quarter section, which lie 
cultivated until 1877, when lie removed to a farm tliree miles east 
of Fort Dodge. Tlie parents continued to reside there until 1881, 
when they went to Badger and made their home with a daughter, 
Mrs. P. A. Houge. There the father passed away in 1893. He 
was sur\ived by tiie mother, whose death occurred six months 
later. The paternal grandfather of our subject w-as John Mood, 
who was in the volunteer service of the King of Sweden, for 
twenty-four years, having entered the army immediately after at- 
taining his majority and having remained in the service until he 
had reached the age limit, fort_\-fi\e years. 

John A. Lindberg, who was a lad of si.x years when his parents 
removed to Iowa, began his education in the district schools near 
Boonesboro, Boone county, Iowa. After graduating from the 
high school in the latter ])lace he matriculated in the law depart- 
ment of the Iowa State Uni\ersit\- at Iowa Citv. from which in- 
stitution he was granted the degree of LL. B. with the class 
of 1871. He was admitted to the bar innnediately after attain- 
ing his majority but has never practiced. After leaving the 
universit}- he turned his attention to agricultural pursuits, with 
which he Iiad l^een familiar from early l)oyhood. and for two 
years thereafter devoted his entire time and energies to farming, 
three miles east of Fort Dodge. In 1880 he came to Dayton 
and purchased the "Dayton Review." a weekly newspaper w hich 
had been established here the year previously, ^fr. T.in(ll)erg 
edited this journal for ten years, and during that period developed 
it into one of the best papers in the county. As he is a public- 
spirited man. of progressive ideas and enterprising methods he 
made it a prominent factor in the development not onlv of the 
town, but of the entire section. It was a clean, wholesome sheet, 



264 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

noticeably free from scurrilous attacks on the candidates of the 
opposing party during political campaigns, while its columns 
were always used to defend the weak or champion any good 
or worthy cause. In 1890. Mr. Lindberg sold his paper to J. G. 
Durrel and withdrawing from the field of journalism engaged in 
the real-estate and insurance business with August Lillyard. 
Three years later, together with several other local business men, 
he organized the Farmers State Bank, of which he has ever 
since been president. They incorporated the institution for 
twenty-five thousand dollars, but they have since increased their 
capital stock to forty thousand dollars, and have a ten thousand 
dollar surplus. It has always been conducted in strict accordance 
with a most conservatixe policy, and as a result it has de\'elopecl 
into one of the thriving and substantial financial institutions of 
the county. The ofificials are all men of recognized standing and 
un(|uestionable integrity, who are well known in local business 
circles. C. J. Swanstrom is vice president: E. M. Lundeen, 
cashier; and TJ. J. Christensen, assistant cashier, while the direc- 
tors are as follows: C. A. Lundblad, S. A. Burnquist: li. B. 
Charles Staymen ; G. S. Ringland: and John BloniI;erg. In addi- 
tion to this connection with the bank Mr. Lindberg is identified 
with the fire and life insurance business, in which he has met with 
excellent success. 

On the 7th of June, 1874, Mr. Lindberg was married to Miss 
Amelia A. Brundien, who was born at Victoria, Knox county, 
Illinois, on the 2d of October, 1852. She is a daughter of William 
and Ellen Brundien. both natives of Sweden, whence they emi- 
grated to the I'nited States in 1848. Upon their arrival in this 
country they located at Bishop's Hill. Illinois, where they were 
subsequently married. In 1857 they came to Iowa, settling in 
Dayton. Here the father passed away in 1862 but the mother 
sin"\ived him for many years, her death occurring in 1905. Two 
sons have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Lindberg. both of whom have 
made highly creditable records in business and public life. Clar- 
ence J., the elder, who was in the government service and spent 
a year in Cuba during the Spanish-American war, having been 
a member of the first United States pack train that left San .\n- 
tonio, Texas, owns and operates a large cotton plantation at Edna. 
Jackson county, Texas. He married Miss Luna Dedmon, of 
Texas, and they have one son, the onh^ grandchild, who was 
christened John W'., but is called "Billy." Arthur C. the younger 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 265 

son, is now serving as county treasurer of Webster county. He 
was for se\eral years assistant cashier in the Fanners State 
Bank of Dayton, and subsequently ser\ed for four years as deputy 
county treasurer under Peter Hadley. 

^Ir. Lindberg's view^s in reHgious matters coincide witii the 
principles of the Unitarian faith and he is afifiliated with the 
American Unitarian Association. He is a Mason and also be- 
longs to the Knights of Pythias fraternity, while in politics he is 
a stanch republican. During the long period of his residence in 
Dayton, ^Ir. Lindberg has always been one of the leaders in 
municipal affairs, and for twenty years he served in the town 
council. In 1878 he was elected justice of the peace in Dayton 
township and has continuously discharged the duties of this office 
since that time, a period of thirty-four years. He has several times 
filled the mayor's chair, while he was postmaster under both Presi- 
dent Garfield and President Harrison, and for several years he was a 
member of the school board. He was once nominated for county clerk, 
but was defeated by a heavy democratic majority. Mr. Lindberg is 
one of the highly esteemed citizens not only of Dayton but of Webster 
county, where he has established an enviable reputation, his career 
both as a Inisiness man and a public official being noticeably free from 
any imputation that could reflect upon his character. He is a man who 
would be an acquisition to any community because of his high 
standards of citizenship, progressive spirit and disinterested help- 
fulness in all matters pertaining to the common welfare. 



CHARLES C. KNUDSON, 

Charles C. Knudson is the proprietor of the only general store 
in Badger, keeping a full and u])-to-date line of merchandise and 
operating his establishment in an up-to-date and progressive 
way. He is interested in local business expansion aside from his 
activities as a merchant and holds stock in \arious other enter- 
prises, Ijeing public-i>])irited to a marked degree and an active 
fact<ir in the develo])ment of the section in which he was born. 
Mr. Knudson's birth occurred in Badger township, September 
30, i87_'. and he is a sun f)f Christ and Anna ( \rent ) Knudson. na- 
tives of Norway. The father emigrated to America in 1860 and 
subse(|uent1_\- located on a farm in Badger township in 1868, com- 



266 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COL'XTY 

ing to this section from Illinois, where he had settled upon his 
arrival in America. He enlisted in Henshaw's Battery and served 
for four years in the Civil war, returning to Illinois after the 
close of hostilities. In that state he was married and there 
farmed for two years before eventually locating in Badger town- 
ship. Here he purchased one hundred and sixt_\- acres of land 
which he improved and cultivated for a number of years, adding 
to his holdings from time to time until he at length possessed nine 
hundred and sixty acres and was among the most extensive land- 
owners in the section. He w^as engaged in general agricultural 
pursuits upon this property for thirty-six years and then retired 
from active life. mo\ing to the town of Badger, where he has 
since resided. He is one of the leading and important citizens 
of the section, is vice president of the Badger Savings Bank and 
still owns four hundred and eighty acres of fertile and productive 
land in Webster county. 

Charles Knudson was reared at home and received his early 
education in the public schools of Badger township, completing 
his studies at Highland Park College of Des Moines. He later at- 
tended Toljin College at Fort Dodge, graduating from that insti- 
tution with the class of 1896. After laying aside his books he 
accepted a position in the employ of the Peavey Elevator 
Company, working first at Badger and then at Lake Mills, Iowa. 
After two years he went to Fort Dodge, where he clerked in a 
shoe store conducted bv a Mr. Rudesill for a similar period of 
time, returning finally to his native section, where he established 
himself in the mercantile business. He was successful from the 
beginning and his prosperity has come as a natural result of 
his industry and ability. Owing to a recent fire in the business 
section of the village Mr. Knudson is the projjrietor of the only 
general store. He carries a large and varied stock of goods and 
owns the building in which he conducts his business. He is one 
of the leading and prominent merchants in Badger, operating his 
enterprise along modern lines and interested in the general 
growth and welfare. He is one of the officers of the Badger Tele- 
phone Company, is a stockholder in the Farmers Elevator Com- 
pany of Badger, and is also a stockholder in the Corn Belt Packing 
Companj^ of Fort Dodge. 

In May, 1896, Mr. Knudson was united in marriage to Miss 
Catherine \\'illianis. a daughter of Michael and Mary ( Keilly) 
^\"illiams. To their union have been born two children: Charles 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 267 

A., who is eight years old; and Robert A., aged three. Air. 
Knudson is a progressive republican and is serving as president of 
the school board. He is a member of the town council, has 
served since January 3, 1907, as postmaster of the village, and is 
doing able and effective work in local politics. He belongs to 
the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, holding his member- 
?hip in the I^^ort Dodge lodge, and is a devout adherent of the 
Lutheran church. Mr. Knudson devotes most of his time to the 
management of his store and to the operation of his other affairs, 
which are ably conducted, making him one of the leading business, 
men in Badger. 



AMBROSE R. WRIGHT. 

Ambrose R. Wright is a retired farmer, living at the corner of 
Fourth avenue and Fifteenth street in Fort Dodge. The eighty- 
three years of his life record present many admirable and substan- 
tial qualities of manhood and of citizenship and he has ever enjoyed 
the high regard and confidence of those with whom he associated. 
He was born in Sullivan, Sullivan county, New York, Septem- 
ber 30, 1829. His grandfather, Samuel Wright, served his country 
as a soldier in the Revolutionary war and in days of peace fol- 
lowed farming for many years in Sullivan county, New York. 
He had three sons, Samuel, Daniel and John. The first named 
was reared in Sullivan county and became a farmer, hunter and 
trapper. He was sent for by farmers miles distant from his place 
of abode to catch wolves that were killing sheep and he received 
thirt_\- dollars bounty per head. He always kept two guns and 
was a remarkably ;iccurate shot. He had several encounters with 
wild animals, as thrilling as any tale of fiction. At one time his 
clothing was all torn from his 1)ody by a*bear, which he killed 
with a club after an exciting l)attle, managing to escape with his 
own life. He had wounded the bear with squirrel shot, and this 
only angered the aniiual, which then attacked him. lie was well ad- 
vanced in years when he went to Indiana to visit two si.sters who 
were living there. That winter he proceeded to Wi.sconsin on 
a hunting and trapping expedition and had exciting times 
with the Indians, who would steal his game from the traps. Later 
he returned to Xcw ^■ork. where he died .-diout \H^j. when sixty- 



268 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

two years of age. In earl}- manhood he married Frances Curry, 
also a native of the Empire state and a daughter of Stephen and 
Anna Curry, who were Hkewise born in New York, wliere her 
father followed the occupation of farming. He lived to the very 
remarkable old age of one hundred and two years. In his family 
were seven children, Thomas, Frances, John, \Villiam, Stephen, 
James and another daughter. Of these Frances became Mrs. 
Wright and, surviving her husband for a number of years, she 
passed away in 1865, at the age of sevent\'-three. Both were con- 
sistent Christian people, holding membership in the ^lethodist 
church. Their children were eight in number, six of whom 
reached years of maturity: Thomas; Stephen; Anna, who mar- 
ried Henry Denman; Daniel; Ambrose R. ; and Tamar, who 
became the wife of Morgan Hornbeck. 

. Ambrose R. AX'right was reared in Sullivan county, New York, 
early becoming familiar with all the experiences that fall to the 
lot of the farm lad. His education was largely acquired in one 
of the old-time log schoolhouses. furnished with slab seats, which 
were supposed to have been planed ofif but an occasional hem- 
lock sliver would make the small boy realize that he was not 
sitting on a polished board. The farmers in the neighborhood 
contributed the fuel, taking turns in hauling wood for the tires, 
and the school boys would have to chop it. Some times the 
children would take the benches outside and put them along in a 
row in order to make a slitle, wiiich furnished amusement during 
the recess ])eriod. 

No event of special importance occurred to \arv the routine 
of farm life for .\mbrose \\ right in his boyhood and youth. On 
the 2(1 of January, 1850. however, he made arrangements for 
having .h h<inie of his own through his marriage to Miss Diana 
Bowers, a daughter of rainier Bowers. In July. 1907, when in 
her seventy-sixth year she jiassed away in the faith of the Presby- 
terian church, of which she was a devoted member. She was 
<born in Sullivan county. New York, in 1832 and her parents were 
also natives of that state. Avhile her paternal grandfather was 
a soldier of the Revolutionary war. To Mr. and Mrs. Wright 
were born eleven children: Frances: Silas; Edgar; .Mice; Viola; 
Leone; .Annie; Dr. Oscar Wright, who resides in Dakota; Dr. 
Clark, deceased, formerlv of El Paso. Texas; Earl; and one, who 
died in infanc\'. There arc also over thirtv grandchildren and 
a number of great-grandchildren. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 269 

l-ollo\ving- liis marriage Mv. Wright continuetl to reside in tlie 
Empire state until 1877. when lie came to Iowa and settled on 
a homestead alxmt ten miles west of Fort Dodge, securing a 
claim of eighty acres. He afterward bought and sold land and 
at one time was the owner of four hundred acres. After carrying 
on farming for twenty-eight years in Webster county he took up 
his abode in Fort Dodge, where he has since lived, and here he 
built tliree houses, which he still owns and which bring him a 
good income. Although past eighty-three years of age, he is well 
preserved, possessing all of his faculties, and is quite active for 
one of his years. He began life a poor boy, without assistance, 
and has since made his own way in the world. He and his esti- 
mable wife experienced and endured the hardships and privations 
incident to pioneer life but met all uncomplainingly, traveling life's 
journey happily together and sharing each other's joys and sor- 
rows. It was their aim to set before their children a good example, 
to live peaceably with all men and to do unto others as they 
would be done l)y. The noble qualities of his nature have won for 
]\Ir. Wright the high regard and friendship of all with whom 
he has come into contact. He is one of the worthy old settlers 
of the county and it is with pleasure that we present his record 
to our readers. 



WALTER ]>()\\ERS. 



One of the most attractive properties of Douglas township is 
the two hundred acre farm of Walter Powers, whose capably di- 
rected energies have ranked him among the representative agri- 
culturists of Webster county, .\lthough the greater part of his 
life has been passed in the west, he is a son of New England, his 
birth having occurred in Maine in July, 1842. His father, Steven 
Powers, was a native of the same state, while the mother, whose 
maiden name was Alary Culwrll. was born in i'enns\-l\ani;i. 
Their family numbered three sons and two daughters, all oi 
whom lived to attain maturity. Mr. and Mrs. Powers made their 
home in Maine until the s])ring of 1856, when they removed to 
Iowa with their family, locating in Webster county. Here the 
father, whose energies were always dr\dlcd to farming, bought 
three hundred and twenty acres of l.-ind. It was entirelv without 



270 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

improvements and had never been even broken, but with the 
persistent diligence characteristic of the New Englander he soon 
had erected the necessary buildings for the comfort of himself 
and family and then applied himself to the plowing of his fields. 
He later increased his holdings by the purchase of an adjoining 
tract of two hundred acres, all of which had been placed under 
cultivation and had been converted into a well improved farm 
before he passed away in 1880. He was sur\i\ed by the mother, 
whose death occurred in 1900. 

The life of Walter Powers has not been unusual in any respect, 
but is that of the average man whose years are passed in the 
country. When old enough to begin his education l\e entered the 
district schools of his native state, \\hich he attended until he 
came to Iowa with his parents. As he was only lourteen years of 
age when the family located in Webster county, he here resumed 
his studies, contimiing to attend school until he had mastered 
the common branches. He was early lirought to realize the re- 
sponsibilities and duties of life, and can hardly remember when 
he had not some definitely assigned tasks which had to be per- 
formed regularly. When still a school boy he worked in the 
fields and before attaining his maturity was familiar with the 
jiractical methods of agriculture. He lived on the home farm 
until after the death of the parents when he and his brothers 
bought the interest of their sisters in the homestead, which they 
subsequently <livided. Mr. Powers recei\ed as his portion his 
present holding, which was entirely unimproved. During the 
inter\-ening years a comfortable residence and substai^ial barns 
and sheds ha\e l)een erected, while as his circumstances have 
warranted he has added many minor improvements and modern 
inventions. Thus he has not onh- increased the productiveness 
of his farm, but he has added greatly to its attraoli\eness as a 
place of residence, both of which ha\e contributed to its value. 
Diversified farming and stock-raising ha\e always been Mr. 
Powers' main source of revenue, and under his systematic and 
capable direction both have ])ro\en \ery remunerative. 

In June, 1877. Mr. Powers was married to Miss Katie McTntyre. 
?nd to them have been born six children: Steven, William and 
John, who are deceased ; Mary Ann ; Aileen : and Leon \\'., who is 
a student at the Chicago University. 

The church connection of the family is that of the Roman Cath- 
olic, and politic'illv Mr. Powers stanchly supports the demo- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 271 

cratic party. He takes an interest in all township affairs and has 
served for several years as trustee. He is a man who is always 
ready to serve in any public capacity and after the Spirit Lake 
massacre joined one of the regiments organized to protect the 
settlers from the Indians. Mr. Powers has prospered in his under- 
takings, but it is the success which invariably rewards the man, 
w^ho energetically applies himself to acquiring a thorough mastery 
of the business he is engaged in and utilizes the knowledge thus 
eained in an intelligent manner. 



PETER A. HOUGE. 



On July 24, 1908, occurred an event which was the occasion of 
genuine sorrow in the village of Badger as well as in the sur- 
rounding districts, for on that date Peter A. Houge, who had been 
an honored and respected citizen of the county for forty years, 
passed away. Mr. Houge had for many years been engaged in 
farming and in various business activities in the section and was 
mayor of Badger when he died. He was, therefore, widely and 
favorably known and had a wide circle of friends. He was a na- 
tive of Wisconsin, having been born in this state on June 26, i860, 
and was a son of John and Carrie (Dahl) Houge, natives of Nor- 
way. His parents came to America at an early date and located 
in Wisconsin, where the father farmed for a number of years 
finally coming to Iowa where he settled in Webster county. In 
1868 he took up land in Badger township which he improved 
and operated until his death which occurred on November 11, 
1892, when he was sixty-nine years of age. His wife survived him 
until 1905. dying in .\ugust of that year. 

Mr. Houge has been a resident of Badger township since he was 
eight years of age. His education was received in the public 
schools of this section and he remained at home until he had 
attained his majority. When he was twenty-one years of age he 
jjegan active life for himself, renting one of his father's farms 
and operated the same for several years with gratifying success. 
He purchased this property and carried on general agriculture 
until 1890. when he moved to the village of Badger and established 
himself in the merchandise business, conducting a store and farm- 
ing at the same time for about one year. He later disposed of 



272 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

his general mercantile business and conducted a hardware store 
which he operated successfully and along the most progressive and 
modern lines until iiis death which occurred in Jul}-, 1908. 

In January, 1882, Air. Houge was united in marriage to Miss 
Elinor E. Lindberg, a daugiiter of John and Christine Lindberg, 
natives of Sweden. Her father came to America at an early date, 
settling in Illinois where he farmed for a number of years coming 
later to \\'ebster county where he purchased land in Harden town- 
ship which he operated and developed until September. 1893. 
Both parents were making their home with Mrs. Houge when 
they passed away. Mr. and Mrs. Houge had four children: Irene 
E., the wife of Frederick Dorheim, of Badger; Arnold E.. who is 
a hardware merchant in the same village; Clifford K.. who is a 
successful furniture dealer; and Pearl L.. who passed awav in 
January, 191 1. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Houge was a firm republican 
and always actively interested in the welfare and progress of his 
section. He held many township oiilices and was mayor of Badger 
at the time of his death. He was a member of the Modern Wood- 
men of America and well known in the affairs of that organiza- 
tion. He was an active and industrious man, of a good business 
and political ability, being systematic and efficient in the conduct 
of his mercantile business, and upright, conscientious and ])ublic 
spirited in his official life. His prosperity was of the solid kind 
which is the outgrowth of merit and his business was kejit sub- 
servient to his duties of citizenship. His death caused widespread 
regret which was a genuine tribute of sorrow for the close of 
a worthy life. 



REV. JAMES J. DOLLIVER. 

The term "bather Dulli\er,'" by which he was everywhere known, 
indicated how high was the position which the Rev. James Jones Dolli- 
ver held in the regard and love of his fellowmcn. It is a name that 
transcends that of any title, indicating the closest possible relationship 
in all that is beautiful anil sacred in life. In his later years, as the 
result of his far-reaching efforts in the ministry and the noble life 
which he led, he became known as leather Dolliver throughout the 
entire country, and especially in Washington, where his last days were 




REV. JAMES .1. D0LL1\ER 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 273 

passed in the home of his distinguished son, J. P. DolHver. A native 
of Saratoga county. New York, he was born in 1816, a son of Captain 
Henry and Mary (Van Vorhees) DolHxer. The former was captain 
of a ship running between New York and Lixerpool and served in the 
War of 181J. Captured by the British, he was sent to Dartmoor 
prison in England, being released at the cessation of hostilities, after 
which he returned to America. 

James J. Dolliver acquired his education in the public schools of 
New Jersey, where he spent his early boyhood and afterward engaged 
in teaching school. He was truly a self-made man so far as regards 
college education, but in the school of experience he learned many 
valuable lessons. He learned to know and interpret human nature, 
to understand and sympathize with human weaknesses and to 
encourage and promote the better cpialities. Taking up the profession 
of teaching, he was throughout his life an educator, not in the limited 
sense of giving instruction in the rudimentary branches or even in the 
classics and sciences, but a teacher in the broader sense of preparing 
the individual for life's responsible duties. On leaving the east he 
removed to Ohio and engaged in merchandising in Columbus. While 
there living he was converted and, resolving to devote his life to the 
cause of Christianity, became a minister of the Methodist Episcopal 
church. For more than a half century he was thus in active connection 
with the church, preaching in Virginia and in West Virginia, where 
he was particularly interested in the educational affairs of the church. 
He was ever proud of the fact that he had been a circuit rider in Vir- 
ginia, carrying the gospel into isolated homes and districts where there 
was much need of the cheering word and message of religion. 

At Kingwood, Preston county, Virginia, Mr. Dolliver was mar- 
ried to Eliza Jane Brown, a daughter of Robert Brown of that place. 
The family to which she belonged was one of the oldest and most 
distinguished in the state, her uncle, William G. Brown, being a mem- 
ber of congress when the state of West Virginia was formed. The 
children bfirn unto Mr. and Airs. I)(jllivcr were the Rev. Robert II. 
Dolliver, who married Mary Ella Barrett, of Ohio; the Hon. Jonathan 
P. Dolliver. who married Louise Pear.sons, of Fort Dodge, Iowa; 
Victor Brown, who wedded Augjusta Larrabee; Marv', the wife of Ed- 
win R. Graham, of Ohio; and Margaret Gay Dolliver, who now occu- 
pies the position of dean of women at Morningside College. 

The Rev. James J. Dolliver gave his political allegiance to the 
republican party and with him politics meant one of the (lci)artnients 



274 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

of citizenship, wliich term always carries with it a sense of obligation 
and responsibility as well as of privilege. He was concerned with the 
vital sociological, economical and political questions of the day as well 
as with the great moral problems, and his influence was ever a permeat- 
ing force on the side of progress, reform, justice and truth. He lived 
with his son, the Hon. Jonathan P. Dolliver, during the latter's public 
career in Washington and was honored and beloved by all who knew 
him. He died in the capital city at the ripe old age of eighty-nine years 
and was laid to rest in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Thus ended the earthly 
career of "Father Dolliver" but his memory is enshrined in the hearts 
of all who knew him and his influence is felt in the lives of all who 
came under his teaching. 



LUTHER HERBERT PRATT. 

Luther Herljert Pratt, who lives upon his farm on section 22, 
Otho Townsliip, was born in Granville, Licking county, Ohio, on 
the nth of February, 1843. His parents were Luther M. and 
Chloe D. (Moore) Pratt, both of whom were natives of (iran- 
ville. The father, a wagon maker by trade, worked at tiiat 
occupation in Granville for a number of years. Subsequently he 
followed farming in the Buckeye state until the spring of 1866, 
when he came to Webster count}', Iowa, and purchased eighty 
acres of land on section 28, Otho Township. Later he bought 
additional tracts of land until he owned a farm of two hundred 
and twenty-two and one-half acres. Here his wife died Xoven> 
ber 8, 1878. He married again, in 1880, his second wife being 
Jane M. (Kennedy) Madden. After this he spent part of his time 
on the farm and part in Gowrie, Iowa. His demise, howe\er. oc- 
curred in South Dakota, October 21, 1890, wliile lie was in that 
state on business. His second wife died in Rockford, Washing- 
ton, July 29, 1900. 

The subject of this sketch was reared in the state of his nati\ity 
and worked at home for his father until 1862. Then came the 
call of President Lincoln for volunteers, and August 15, 1862, 
Mr. Pratt enlisted as a private in Company A, Eighty-eighth Ohio 
Volunteer Infantry, and remained with that command until he was 
nuistered out, July 3, 1865. After the war he came to Webster 
county, Iowa, and lived with his parents for several years. In 1875 
he rented a farm in Otho township, devoting his attention to its opera- 




^0 

I 



uJ 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 277 

tion for three years. Tlien, in 187S, he went to Chnton county, Iowa, 
where for one year he owned and conducted a drug store. Later, in 
1879, he was appointed postmaster of Charlotte, and acted in that 
capacity for six years. With the change of administration, when 
Cleveland became president, he was relieved of the office. Soon after, 
in April, 1886, he returned to Webster county, Iowa, and cultivated 
rented land for eight years. Subsequently in 1894, he purchased sixty- 
five acres of liis present farm, on section 22. Otho township, and 
began the improvement of the place. The farm house is situated 
en the bluffs overlooking the Des Moines River valley, and is 
surrounded by native timber, making a pleasant and attractive 
property. This with some additional land, afterward purchased, 
still remains the home of Mr. and Mrs. Pratt. 

On the 29th of August, 1875, Mr. Pratt was united in marriage 
to Miss Vergenia L, Markham, a daughter of Elijah and Zurviah 
Mary (Shaw) Markham, both of whom were natives of New 
York, and where she herself was born March 22, 1854. The 
father, a carpenter by trade, worked at that occupation in the 
Empire state until April, 1855, when he came to Iowa, locating at 
Charlotte, Clinton county. There he continued the work of his 
trade and spent the remainder of his life, passing away on the 
4th of November, 1904. His wife had previously died on the 
8th of January, 18S5. Mr. and Mrs. Pratt have one son, Harlow 
M., who is an attorney of Fort Dodge, Iowa, and the editor of 
this history. 

In politics Mr. Pratt is a stanch republican. He has served 
as trustee of Otho township and has also filled the offices of as- 
sessor and school director at different times. His religious faith 
is that of the Congregational church, while his wife is a 
Methodist. 



HIK.\M H. BALDWIN, M. D. 

Dr. Hiram II. Baldwin is one of the well known members of 

the medical fraternity of Webster county, having been actively 

and successfully engaged in the practice of this profession in 

Clare for twenty years. He was born in De Kalb, Illinois, on the 

12th of Seincml)er, 1849, and is a son of Smith 1). and S.-irali D. 

(Hopkins) llaldwin. natives of Ohjf) and .Salem, New ^'ork, re- 
voi. n— 16 



278 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

spectively. At the age of twenty-one years, the father enlisted 
as second Heutenant under Captain John Chapman of the Third 
Ohio Infantry and went to the front in the Mexican war. He 
enlisted at Tiffin. Ohio, on the 3d of June, 1846, and remained in 
the service for thirteen months. A blacksmith by trade, when 
mustered out of the army he went to DeKalb, Illinois, and es- 
tablislied a wagon and blacksmith shop, which he conducted for 
many years. He also entered a hundred and sixty acres of land 
and engaged to a limited degree in agricultural piu'suits in con- 
nection with working at his trade. In 1869. he remo\ed with his 
family to Calhoun county, Iowa, and purchased eighty acres of 
land in the \icinity of Lake City. The development of his farm 
engaged his entire time and attention during the remainder of 
his life, his death here occurring in August, 1872, at the age of 
forty-seven years. He was long survived by the mother, who had 
nearly reached the eighty-seventh anniversary of her birth before 
passing away on January 6, 1912. 

Dr. Baldwin was reared and educated in his nati\e town, where 
he passed the first twenty years of his life. After leaving the 
public school he learned the printer's trade, which he followed in 
DeKalb for four years. He accompanied his family on their 
1 emo\-al to Iowa and assisted his father with the cultixation of 
the home place until 1871. During that time he also assisted in 
establishing and operating the first newspaper in Calhoun county. 
In the fall of "71, he returned to DeKalb and began the study of 
medicine under the direction of his uncle. Dr. Robert Hopkins. 
The iiext year he matriculated in the medical department of the 
Northwestern University and there continued his professional 
studies for a year. Having exhausted his funds at the expiration 
of that period he was compelled to go to work in order to accpiire 
the means to continue his education. The next foiu' years he was 
employed at various vocations, resuming his studies in the fall 
of 1878. He remained in college during the succeeding two years. 
l)eing graduated with the class of 1880. Upon receiving his degree 
he returned to Lake City, where he established an office and en- 
gaged in the practice of his profession until the 251I1 of August. 
1892, when he disposed of his interests at that point and came to 
Clare. Here he has ever since been located and has met with a 
good measure of success in building up a practice. He owns a 
nice residence and business building on Main street, and is held 
in high regard in the commiuiity both as a re])resentati\e of his 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 279 

profession and as a private citizen. In addition to his private 
practice Dr. Baldwin is the local examiner for several of the old 
line insurance companies. 

In March, 1882, was celebrated the marriage of Dr. Baldwin 
and Miss Margaret A. Hines, of Janesville, Wisconsin. She is 
a daughter of Patrick and Johana Hines, natives of Ireland, 
whence they emigrated to the United States in earl)^ life. 

Dr. Baldwin is not identified with any church but Mrs. Baldwin 
is a Roman Catholic. He votes the democratic ticket, and while 
living in Calhoun county took an active interest in politics, having 
been the first mayor of Lake City, where he also held the office of 
postmaster from 1886 to 1890. He is a member of the County and 
State Medical Societies, through the medium of which organiza- 
tions he maintains relations with his fellow practitioners. A 
residence in Clare covering a period of more than twentv vears 
has enabled Dr. Baldwin to prove himself to be not onlv a skilful 
physician and surgeon but a man of many estimaljle qualities and 
traits of character, which have served to win him the stanch 
loyaltv of a large circle of friends. 



PATRICK T. BURKE. 



Patrick T. Burke has been engaged in the general merchandise 
business in Barnum, Iowa, for many years, having a record of 
almost twenty-five years of continuously successful activity in 
one location. By being always upright and straightforward in 
his methods and standards of operation and liy keeping his stock 
of the highest quality he has become known as the most trust- 
worthy tradesman in the village and has gained well deserved 
prosperity. He was born in Johnson township, February i, 1865, 
and is a son of Philip and Bridget (Connors) Burke, natives of 
Ireland. The father came to America in 1852, settling fust in 
Illinois, where he worked at railroading. In 1857 ho came to 
Webster county and entered land near Clare, Johnson township. 
.■\fter proving his title he moveil upon the property, which he 
operated and developed until 1870. when he disposed of his hold- 
ings and went to Calhoun county. Here he again purchased land 
and farmed along progressive lines until his death, which oc- 
curred in September, 1877. He was killed in a runaway accident. 
His wife survived him until December. 1907. 



280 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Patrick Burke was reared at home and educated in the pubHc 
schools of Webster county, where he has spent his entire Hfe. 
He remained with his parents upon the home farm until he at- 
tained his majority, subsequently establishing himself in the mer- 
cantile business, when he formed a partnership with Tom Con- 
nors in the conduct of a general store and the association con- 
tinued for a year and a half, after which Mr. Burke purchased 
]\Ir. Connors' interest and has since continued the enterprise 
alone. He is at present located upon the site where his business 
was founded in 1888. He has met with some reverses but has on 
the whole been unusually successful. His store and some of his 
stock were destroyed by fire on June 10, 1902, when the entire 
business section of the village was wiped out with a loss to the 
community of thirty thousand dollars. Fifteen substantial build- 
ings were burned to the ground, among them Mr. Burke's store. 
He immediately afterward erected a fine, one-story brick building 
which he now occupies. He owns the double brick structure ad- 
joining this and is a stockholder in the Farmers F.levator Com- 
pany and the Barnum Telephone Company. He has been very 
successful, having founded his prosperity upon high standards of 
commercial honor and integrity. He has never sold his home 
farm of one hundred and sixty acres in Calhoun enmity and this 
is now an additional source of income to him. 

In his political affiliations Mr. Burke is a consistent republican 
and has served as secretary of the Barnum school lioard for twenty 
years and also did able work as a member of the town council. 
He belongs to the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks and to 
the Modern AN'oodmen of .America. He has built up gradually 
an enterprise which is now important in retail trade circles of 
Barnum. seeking no success more conspicuous than that which he 
has attained in his reputation as a clean and practical business 
man. 



EDWARD BURGFRIED. 

The late Edward Burgfried was one of the natives of German3% 
who came to America practically empty-handed and through his 
inherent diligence and tiirift ultimately liecamc numbered among 
the prosperous agriculturists of \\'el)ster county, owning at the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 281 

time of his demise two hundred and forty acres of well cultivated 
land in Douglas township. His natal day was in Alarch, 1843, 
and his parents Doniinicus and Margaret (Mangold) Burgfried, 
who passed their entire lives in Germany, where the father fol- 
lowed the profession of architecture. 

The first thirty-one years in the life of Edward Burgfried were 
passed in the land of his birth. Feeling convinced at the ex- 
piration of that time that America afforded better opportunities 
to the enterprising man than were to be found in his native land 
he took passage with his wife and family for the United States. 
They located in Fort Dodge, this county, in 1874 and there for 
three years he followed the carpenter's trade. He next turned 
his attention to agricultural pursuits and in 1877 I'ented a farm 
in Douglas township, in the cultivation of which he met with such 
success that the next year he was able to buy an eighty acre tract. 
He kept on increasing his holdings from time to time, as he was 
able, until he held the title to two hundred and forty acres. He 
engaged in the development of his property until his death, which 
resulted from an accident, on the 23d of October, 1883. He was 
plowing a field, and had taken with him to his work a gun in 
order that he might shoot any game he saw; in some way it was 
discharged and he was instantly killed. 

In Germany in November, 1867, Mr. Burgfried was united in 
marriage to Miss Crescenzia Knoevley, a daughter of Jacob and 
Rosina (Egenter) Knoevley. The father, who was a farmer, en- 
gaged in agricultural pursuits in his nati\e land until about fif- 
teen years prior to his death, which occurred in January, 1890. 
The mother, who has now attained the venerable age of ninety 
years, still makes her home in Germany. Ten children were born 
to Mr. and Mrs. Burgfried, as follow^s : Theodore, who died in 
Germany in 1869; Cireak, who died in 1871 ; Max, who is a 
farmer in South Dakota : Edward, who lives at home ; Theo- 
dore, who is a resident of Des Moines; Mary Frances, the wife of 
William Murphy, a farmer of Douglas township; Joseph and 
George, who are at home; Rosina, the wife of James Dwyer, of 
Johnson township; and Adolph E., .who is attending the State 
University. 

Mrs. Burgfried, who is now sixty-five years of age, having been 
born on the 17th of December, 1847, is a woman of unusual ex- 
ecutive and business ability. After the death of her husband, to- 
gether with her sons she continued the operation of the farm. 



282 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

As she is practical and a capable manager she prospered in her 
undertakings, and has added to her acreage until she owns five 
hundred and sixty acres of highly improved land. 

In matters of faith Mr. Burgfried was a Roman Catholic, as 
are also his widow and family, while his political support he ac- 
corded to the republican party. He vi^as a man of many excel- 
lent qualities and was highly esteemed in his community, where 
he had shown himself to be honorable and upright in all matters 
of business, and was in every way a desirable citizen. 



CHARLES FAVERSHAM BUNCOMBE. 

The history of Fort Dodge bears evidence of the professional 
and commercial activity of Charles Faversham Buncombe, who 
since 1884 has been identified with journalistic interests here 
and at the same time has become a factor in the manufacturing 
and financial circles of the city. He was here born February 20, 
1864, a son of John F'rancis and Mary A. Buncombe. The father 
was a prominent and influential resident of Fort Bodge, where 
he settled in April, 1855, becoming a pioneer lawyer of this then 
frontier village. He was born October 22, 183 1, in Wattsburg, 
Pennsylvania, and was educated in Allegheny College of Mead- 
viile, Pennsylvania, and Central University of Banville, Kentucky. 
He read law in his native town and for a year practiced in Penn- 
sylvania, but in April, 1855, came to Fort Dodge, where he won 
prominence in professional circles. In 1857, when the news of 
the Spirit Lake massacre reached this cit\', he was active in rai.s- 
ing troops to march against the Indians and as captain of a com- 
pany went to the defense of tiie frontier. In 1S58 he wedded 
Mary A. Williams, daughter of Major William Williams. The 
following year he was elected to the state senate and later was 
twice a member of the lower house. In 1872 he was chairman of 
the Iowa delegation to the national democratic convention at 
Baltimore, and in 1892 was selected to present the name of Horace 
Boies before the national democratic convention of that year for 
president. He served for sixteen years as regent of the State 
University and at the same time he continued a prominent repre- 
sentative of his professioTi. serving for thirty-si.x years as attorney 
for the Iowa division of the Illinois Central Railroad, also as 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 283 

attorney for the Alasoii City & Fort Dodge Railroad, the Des 
Moines & Fort Dodge and the Cherokee & Dakota Railroads, 
practicing- over twenty-five counties in the state. He was also a 
leading factor in the development of the coal interests of his 
part of Iowa and as such contributed largely to material progress. 
His labors were indeed a large factor in the growth and upbuild- 
ing of the section in which he lived and his intense business and 
professional activity were combined with a high sense of honor 
that made him one of the most esteemed citizens of Fort Dodge. 
His \vife, who came to this city with her parents in March, 1855, is 
now president of the Webster County Historical Society. John 
F. Dunconibe was a charter member of the chapter and com- 
mandery of the Masonic fraternity here and was also a Scottish 
Rite Mason. In politics he was a stalwart democrat. He re- 
mained a resident of Webster county until his death, which oc- 
curred August 2, 1902. In the family were three sons and two 
daughters: William E., Charles F., Mary J., Gertrude and John A. 

Charles F. Duncombe pursued his education in public and 
private schools and in the State University but did not reach 
graduation. He was a young man of but twenty years when he 
became identified with the jniblication of a newspaper in Fort 
Dodge and he has since been closely associated with journalistic 
interests here, being now sole owner of the Fort Dodge Daily 
Chronicle, which is one of the best known and leading journals 
of the state. In its colunnis he has discussed vital public ques- 
tions relating to municipal affairs and to state and national wel- 
fare. His position has alwa3s been characterized by a progres- 
siveness that has its root in ])ractical methods. In business cir- 
cles, too, Mr. Duncombe has made a creditable name and place 
for himself. For fourteen years he was actively identified with 
the manufacture of gypsum products and in addition to being a 
stockholder in the United States Gypsum Company he is also 
financially interested in the Monarch Telephone Company, the 
Fort Dodge National Bank and in farm lands, beside owning 
town property, including the building which is the homie of the 
Chronicle. 

In public office Mr. Duncombe has also left the impress of his 
individuality upon the welfare of the city. He was postmaster 
trdui 1H04 until i8f)8 and niaynr fmni 1906 until 1908, when lie 
declined to become a candidate for reelection. In 1908 he was 
honored bv the democrats of Iowa bv being named as one of the 



284 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

four delegates-at-large to the Denver convention. At the piesent 
writing he is president of the school board, a director of the 
Chautauqua Association and a director of the Country Club, 
all of which goes to show the nature and breadth of his interests. 
His military history covers service as first sergeant of the first 
company organized in Fort Dodge. His political allegiance has 
always been given to the democratic party and he is well known 
in fraternal relations, holding membership with the Knights of 
Pythias, the Red Men and the Moose. Of the first named he has 
been chancellor commander and keeper of the records and seals. 
On the 22d of November, 1887, at Fort Dodge, Mr. Duncombe 
was united in marriage to Miss Antoinette Hull, a daughter of 
Mr. and Mrs. George M. Hull. The father, who was a leading 
dry-goods merchant here, died in December, 1884, and the mother, 
who had lived here from her childhood, coming with her parents 
from Harvard, Illinois, passed away on the 17th of September, 
1912. Mr. and Mrs. Duncombe have two children, John Faver- 
sham and Carl Milton. The family attend the Episcopal church, 
of which Mr. Duncombe and his wife are members, and Mr. 
Duncombe also is a vestryman. They have been lifelong resi- 
dents of this city and have a circle of friends here almost coex- 
tensive WMth the circle of their acquaintance. His varied business 
interests and his official service have brought him prominently 
before the public and none question the sincerity of his interest 
in the welfare of the municipality, for this has found tangible proof 
in his many acts for the city's good. 



VICTOR BROWN DOLLIVER. 

Victor Brown Dolliver was a representative of the highest type of 
citizenship. He stood for those things which are most worth while in 
life — the highest physical, mental and moral development — and his 
beliefs and s}mipathies found expression in tangible efifort for the 
good of his fellowmen. He worked for the benefit of the majority 
in his political activity, in the church and in many other ways, ever 
progressing toward the high ideals which he had set up. He was bom 
in Kingwood, W^est Virginia, IMarch 18, 1861, a son of the Rev. James 
Jones and Eliza Jane (Brown) Dolliver. He was early possessed of a 



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VICTOR B. DOLLIVER 






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HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 285 

desire for an education and walked from five to seven miles to attend 
elementary schools. He afterward availed himself of the opportunity 
of pursuing a three years' course at the State Normal Scliool at Fair- 
mont, West Virginia, and he also attended De Pauw University at 
Greencastle, Indiana. He at length completed a course in Cornell Col- 
lege at Mount Vernon, Iowa, in 1887 and was graduated from the 
Columbia Law School at Washington, D. C, in 1891. He became 
widely and favorably known through his efforts in the field of teaching. 
He was principal of the public schools in Cowrie, Iowa, and afterward 
accepted the jxisition of principal of the Methodist Seminary in Salt 
Lake City, Utah. In the latter position he came in close contact with 
Mormonism and was a leader of the Gentile element in opposition to 
the admission of Utah as a state because of the power which would 
thus be given to Mormon influence. His wise and judicious invest- 
ments in real estate at length made him an extensive landowner, for as 
he profited in one sale he would make further purchases until his hold- 
ings were large and important. 

]\Ir. Dolliver's boyhood days, spent upon the borderland between 
the great contending sections of the country, gave him a hatred for 
slavery and a love for the Union that resulted in his becoming an 
ardent advocate of republican principles. With him, to believe in a 
cause was to espouse it and he became a prominent political speaker, 
holding the attention of his auditors when he addressed them upon the 
vital and living questions of the time. 

In 1896 'Sir. Dolliver was married to Miss Augusta Larrabee. the 
eldest daughter of ex-Governor Larrabee, of Iowa. During her 
father's four years' term as go\ernor of the state she was prominent 
and popular in the social circles of the capital, winning the love and 
friendship of all with whom she came in contact not only among the 
residents of Des Moines but throughout Iowa as well. 

Mr. Dolliver was a lifelong member of the Methodist Episcopal 
church and one of the most prominent laymen in that denomination in 
Iowa. He went as a member to the general conference in Los Angeles, 
California, in 1904 and he was unfailing in his efforts to promote the 
upbuilding of the church in every possible way. From the time of his 
wife's death in 1899 he seemed to live for others rather than himself. 
He was continually helping the poor, visiting the sick, sending beauti- 
ful flowers to cheer the sickroom or speaking words of comfort and 
peace to the sufferer. He loved his church and had made extensive 



286 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

plans for its future that its work might be extended and its influence 
broadened. A gift of ten thousand dollars to Morningside College a 
few months before his death was one of his last important efforts to 
promote the growth of the church. His life was indeed of far-reaching 
influence and benefit, and the world is better for his having lived. 



AUGUST MOLLENHOFF. 

August ^lollenhoff is among the well known fanners of Webster 
county, where he is successfully engaged in the cultivation of a highly 
developed farm of one hundred and twenty acres located on section 
21, Burnside township. He was born in Andover, Henry county, Illi- 
nois, September 5, 1862, and is a son of Hans and Sophia (Larson) 
Mollenhoff, both of whom were natives of Sweden. The father came 
to America about 1850, coming to Andover, where he married in 
1853, and went to Pike's Peak, Colorado, at the time of the gold ex- 
citement in 185S. He remained there for two years and then returned 
to Andover, Henry county, Illinois, w here he took up employnient as 
a mail carrier and in that occupation continued for a period of ten 
years. He was united in marriage to Miss Sophia Larson, a daughter 
of Peter Larson, who emigrated to America and settled in Andover, 
Henry county, Illinois, in 1849. It took six months to make the trip 
from Sweden, fourteen weeks of which were si)ent crossing the 
Atlantic. Peter Larson was first married in Sweden and had a 
family of two daughters and one son. His wife died at the time he 
emigrated to America and was buried at sea and lie later married 
Sophia .\nderson. and to that union one daughter was born. The 
mother died and Mr. Larson was later married and to his third union 
a large family was born. He died in Andover, Henry county, and 
was there buried. To Mr. and Mrs. Hans Mollenhoff six children 
were born. J. P., who is engaged in the drug business in Stanton, 
Iowa, married Clara Anderson, of Geneseo, Illinois. Sarah, who 
became the wife of A. W. Johnson, of Andover, passed away in 
December. 1884, at the age of twenty-four, leaving one son, Reuben, 
and was buried near McPherson, Kansas. August, tfie subject of 
our .sketch, is the next in order of birth. Matilda is the wife of .-Mfred 
Rosenquist and resides in Burnside township. Ernest, who is engaged 
in the produce business, married Sadie Freed, a daugliter of C. J- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUx\'TY 287 

Freed, and resides in Stanton, Iowa. Edward wedded Emma Peter- 
son and resides on the old home farm. The father of this family, 
Hans Mollenhotf, came to Burnside in 1881 and died at the age of 
eighty-one and was burieil at Dayton cemetery. At the time of his 
death he owned a farm of one hundred and twenty acres adjoining 
the town of Burnside. He also owned land near Lehigh, but never 
improved the property as it was heavily timbered and the animal in- 
crease in timber value was sufficient to make it a good investment 
without in any way, disturbing its condition. This property is now 
owned by his widow, who resides with her daughter, Mrs. Alfred 
Rosenquist. 

August Alollenhoff was reared in his parents' home and received 
his elementary education in Henry county, Illinois. At the age of 
about eighteen he settled in Burnside township, Webster county, Iowa, 
where he was engaged at work for a number of years, after which he 
removed to Omaha, Nebraska, and after spending five years in that 
city, he returned to Burnside township and later lived for one year 
in Gowrie, Iowa, where he was engaged in the paint and furniture 
business. He then returned to Burnside, where he established a 
furniture store, which he conducted for one year. He then purchased 
from E. H. Litchfield one hundred and twenty acres of unimproved 
land located on section 21, Burnside township, where he established 
his home and has since continued to reside. He has improved the 
place with suitable farm buildings and has also planted ornamental 
and fruit trees of various kinds. The county ditch crosses Mr. Mol- 
eight hundred dollars. In addition to the drainage value of that ditch 
lenhoff's farm, the expense of which to him in assessed ta.xes was 
he has also thoroughly tiled the entire place. He raises mixed grains 
and also makes a specialty of pure-bred Hereford cattle and hogs. 

Mr. Mollenhoft' was united in marriage to Miss Emily Anderson, 
a native of Sweden. Her father is deceased but her mother still lives 
in Sweden. To Mr. and Mrs. Mollenhoff six children have been born : 
Laura, who is attending Tobin College; Alma, a pupil in the public 
schools of Burnside township; and Raymond, Harley, Mabel and 
Clarence, aged respectively thirteen, eleven, eight and six years, all of 
whom are attending school. Mr. Mollenhoff at one time was affiliated 
with the republican party and served as constable of his township for 
ten years, and was justice of the peace for one tenn and has been a 
school director for seven years. lie is at present affiliated with the 
republican party and he and his family are members of the Lutheran 



288 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

church, yir. Mollenhoff is numbered among the \ery successful 
farmers of Burnside township and is a man wlio is highly resiiected 
for his integrity in all business transactions and who by public opinion 
is placed among the useful citizens of his part of the state. 



EDGAR H. WILLIAMS. 



Edgar H. Williams is well known in business circles of Fort Dodge 
as secretary, treasurer and manager of the E. H. Williams Lumber 
Company, which concern he organized. His birth occurred in Bur- 
lington, Wisconsin, on the 22(1 of May, 1868, his parents being Ed- 
gar and Cornelia (Law) Williams, both of whom were natives of 
New York. His paternal grandfather, a native of Wales, and an 
agriculturist by occupation, became an early settler of Bartlett, Oneida 
county. New York. Both he and his wife attained a ripe old age and 
reared a large family of children. George W. Law, the maternal 
grandfather of our subject, was a native of New York, and a farmer 
by occupation. Both he and his wife, who bore the maiden name of 
Harriet Blakesley, were well advanced in years when called to their 
final rest. Their children were eight in number. 

lidgar W illiams, the father of E. H. U'illiams. was reared in 
Oneida county. New York, and Itecame an early settler of Burlington, 
Wisconsin, wliere he embarked in business as a manufacturer of 
farming implements, carriages and wagons. He there passed away 
in 1 87 1, at the comparatively early age of thirty-seven years. His 
widow is still living and makes her home at Canastota, New York. 
He gave his political allegiance to tiie republican party, was a Baptist 
in religious faith and fraternally was identified with the Indeiiendent 
Order of Odd Fellows. His widow is also a devoted member of the 
Baptist church. Tiieir children were five in number, namely: Rhoda 
Gertrude, who is the widow of W. E. Barott and resides in Canas- 
tota, New ^'ork; Clarence B., who makes his home at Morningside, 
Sioux City, Iowa; Florence J., who is the widow of E. A. Haines and 
lives in Canastota, New York; Edgar H., of this review ; and Charles, 
who died at the age of three years. 

Edear H Williams, whose name introduces this review, was three 
years of age when his father died and when taken by his widowed 
mother to Bartlett. New "S'ork. where he grew to manlioixl. He pur- 
sued his early education in tiie common schools, later attended the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 289 

Canastota high school and then continued his studies in Cook 
Academy at Havana, New York. He spent two winters as a district 
schoolteacher and in 1888 came to Iowa, operating a farm in Douglas 
township, \\'ebster county, for three years. On the expiration of that 
period he took up his abode in Fort Dodge and for nine years acted 
as manager of the lumberyard owned by G. W. Mason. During the 
following year he had charge of four yards in southern Iowa and 
subsequently spent five years as manager of the Citizens Lumber Com- 
pany of Fort Dodge and four years as manager for the Townsend & 
Merrill Company of this city. Feeling that his capital and experience 
justified him in embarking in business on his own account, he then or- 
ganized the E. H. Williams Lumber Company, of which he has been 
the secretary, treasurer and manager to the present time. He is a 
man of splendid business ability and sound judgment, and under his 
direction the enterprise has enjoyed continued growth and success. 
On the 18th of July, 1892, Mr. Williams was united in marriage 
to Miss Carrie E. Winter, who was born in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, 
on the loth of October, 1869, her parents being William and Anna 
(Terry) \\'inter, both deceased. The father was a native of Eng- 
land and the mother of Huntingdon, Pennsylvania. They had six 
children, as follows: Carrie E. ; James; Florence; W^illiam; Adelia; 
and .\nna. who died in infancy. Mr. and Mrs. Williams have one 
son. Robert Law, whose natal day was June 7, 1895. 

In ix)litics Mr. Williams is a republican and for nine years he has 
been a member of the school board. He is a worthy exemplar of the 
Masonic fraternity, belonging to Ashlar Lodge, No. iii, F. & A. M., 
and also to the chapter, R. A. M. He is a deacon in the Baptist 
church, to which his wife also belongs. Throughout the period of his 
residence in Fort Dodge, covering about a quarter of a century, Mr. 
Williams has maintained an unassailable reputation for business en- 
terprise and probity, while the sterling worth of his character has 
gained him the friendship of those with whom he has come into 
contact. 



CURTIS G. MESSEROLE. 

Curtis G. Messerole is one of the cntcri)rising citizens of W^ebster 
county, located at Gowric, and is successfully engaged in the grain 
and lumber business. He was burn in Clayton county, Iowa, Janu- 
ary 3, 1864, and is a son of Jacol) and Mary (.\bbott) Messerole. 



290 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

The paternal grandparent was of Welch stock, being born in 
Brooklyn, New York, settling later in Ohio, where his family was 
reared, moving subsequently to Michigan, where he died at the ad- 
vanced age of ninety-four years. The father was a nati\e of Brook- 
lyn, New York, moving with his parents to Ohio, where he resided 
until 1852, wlien he moved with his wife and one child to Clayton 
county. Iowa. He later went to Manchester, in Delaware county, 
where he engaged in the coal, wood and ice business, also being the 
owner of two farms, including two hundred acres of land in Dela- 
ware county. The mother was a native of Ohio and was descended 
from Puritan stock. They were the parents of eight children, of 
whuni ihe subject of this review was the youngest. 

Curtis G. Messerole was reared in his parents' home and received 
his education in the public schools of Iowa. After completing his 
school course he was engaged in working on a farm until he was 
eighteen years of age. In 1882 he went to Correctionxille, Wood- 
bury county, Iowa, and there took up work as lx>okkeeper and sales- 
man for a lumber company, with whom he remained for nearly four 
years, afterward engaging as bookkeeper and buver for a grain firm, 
and later with a hardware and implement house, remaining 
with this firm until he moved to Kingsley. Iowa, in 1888. In 1890 
he moved to Sterling, Illinois, being employed as manager of a 
transfer and clearing house for a large grain concern, where he re- 
mained until coming to Harcourt, Webster county, Iowa, in 1894, 
engaging in llie grain and live-stock business on his own account. 
In tlic year 1897 he returned to Sterling, Illinois, where he again 
took up his work for tiie same firm, remaining there for five years 
or until 1902, when he came to (iowrie. Iowa, and became the man- 
ager of the I'anners Elevator Company, having been in the service 
of this company continuously for ten years. 

In 1904 he was one of the organizers of the Farmers Grain Deal- 
ers Association of Iowa, and served as its secretary and organizer 
for seven vears. A year later he organized the company which pub- 
lislicd tlie .\nierican Coo])erative Journal, an organ devoted to the in- 
terests of cooperation, serving as the president and editor of this 
paper for six years, after which he relinquished the editorial work but 
still serves as president of the company. 

Mr. Messerole was united in marriage, November 4, 1885. at Cor- 
rectionville, to Miss Mary C. Kissinger, a daughter of Isaac and .\de- 
lia (Nicholson) Kissinger, the fomier a native of Pennsylvania and 
the latter of New York. TIic nrnthcr is of Fnglisli descent and the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 291 

tatlier of German extraction. The paternal grandfather as a young 
man prepared for the legal profession but never engaged in the prac- 
tice of law. He later became interested in music and has de\'oted 
full}' fifty years of his life to teaching. 

To Mr. and Mrs. Messerole three children have been born. Ger- 
trude A. is tlie w ife uf Arthur Lind(|uist, both being graduates of the 
Go-.\Tie higli school. She subse(|uently took a course at Tobin Col- 
lege at Fort Dodge, and he a course at Augustana College at Rock 
Island, Illinois. Mr. Lindquist is employed with his father and 
brother in conducting the First National Bank at Gowrie. To Air. 
and ]\lrs. Lindquist one son has been born, .\rthur Lindquist, Jr. 
Floy A. Messerole, the second daughter, is a graduate of the Gowrie 
high school and is employed as her father's bookkeeper. Kenneth 
Messerole is the only son and is a student in the Gowrie high school. 

Mr. J^Iesserole is a member of the Masonic lodge at Gowrie, the 
Chapter and Commandery at Ford Dodge, and the Consistorj' at Des 
Moines. He is also a member of the Modern Woodmen of America 
at Gowrie, the Knights of Pythias at Gowrie, and the Royal Neigh- 
bors at Sterling, Illinois. He is now serving his second term as mayor 
of Gowrie. has been a member of the town board for two terms, and 
is serving his tliird term as meml)er of tlie l)oard of education, of 
which he is president. He is one of the enterprising, successful busi- 
. ness men of Gowrie and is held in high esteem by all his friends and 
associates. 



WWLTER T. POST. 



Walter J. Post, who is manager of the store of Post & Company, 
dealers in general merchandise, and also in hay and corn, at Lehigh, 
is a prominent resident of that city and has sen'ed for eight years 
consecutively as trustee of Sumner township. He is a son of O. B. 
and Annie E. Post and was born in (jrcen count}, Wisconsin. He 
lived with his parents on a farm until se\enteen years of age, and 
in 1886 came with his parents to Webster county, Iowa, settling on a 
farm of two hundred acres, which they later sold. The store of Post 
& Company was then estahlislieil. wiiich is iwnv managed hv W . J. 
Post. The fatlicr passed a\\a\- at tiie age of si.\ly-ii\c years. :uui 
was buried in the Lehigh cemetery. He was a faithful member of 
the Christian cluirch. His wife now resides in this citv and is tlie 



292 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

owner of the Post & Company store. She has reached the age o"" 
seventy-six years and is very active and energetic. ■■'' 

Waher J. Post still resides with his mother. He is one of five chil- 
dren, the others being: Arthur, who resides in Oklahoma; Mrs. Mary 
Hall, a widow, of Hampton, Iowa; Charles, of Lehigh, Iowa, who also 
resides with his mother and is connected with the store; and Harr\-, 
the youngest, who is located at Des Moines, Iowa, and is city pass- 
enger agent for the Great \\'estern Railway. 

Walter J. Post received his early education in the public schools 
of Wisconsin and later attended school in Webster township. Ever 
since the oj^ening of the store of Post & Company he has been asso- 
ciated with the same and has been the general manager. In his polit- 
ical views he is a democrat: but in local party issues he votes for the 
man whom he considers to be best qualified to fill the office. He 
has ever been very acti\e in all local party measures and is now a 
member of the city council on the independent ticket, having been a 
member of the council for six years. He also has been trustee of Sum- 
ner township for eight consecutive years on the democratic ticket, 
Mr. Post is greatly interested in reform and progress and has been a 
very helpful factor in the general im])rovement. Active and energetic, 
he is an enterprising business man of Lehigh, displaying those traits 
of character which in every land and clime awaken respect and ad- 
miration. 



A. F. DAUGHEXBAUGH. 

A. F. Daughenbaugh is successfully engaged in the banking and 
real-estate business in Gowrie. He was born in Dayton, Webster 
county, l-"e1)ruar\' 13, 1872, and is a son of A. R. and Henrietta 
( Richey) Daughenbaugh. The paternal grandfather, James Daughen- 
baugh, was by occupation a miller. He removed from Pennsylvania to 
Illinois and settled in Freeport, Stephenson county, where he con- 
tinued to live during the remaining years of his life. The maternal 
grandparents were Jasper and Martha Richey. The grandfather fol 
lowed the occupation of milling for a time and later, in 1854, settled 
in Dayton county and engaged in farming. The father, A. R. Daugh- 
enbaugh, came to Webster county in 1867. In the fall of the follow- 
ing year he came to Gowrie and engaged in banking and real estate. 
When the Rock Island Railroad was built through this part of the 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 293 

s?Tte he purchased some of the right-of-way for the company and at 
ti.ac time became interested in different places along the line of that 
road and later acquired interests in a number of different mercantile 
stores and also in several elevators. He was affiliated with the re- 
publican party and for twenty-five years filled the office of postmaster 
of Gowrie. He was mayor of the city, for many years treasurer of 
Gowrie and a member of the school board- He held membership in 
Rose Lodge, No. 509, F. & A. M., and died May 29, igcx). His widow 
survixxs him. 

A. F. Daughenbaugh was reared at home and received his early 
education in the public schools and later graduated from the Des 
Moines high school. He afterward pursued a course of instruction in 
the Bryant & Stratton Business College in Chicago and was later 
graduated from the Drake College of Law. He then engaged in the 
banking and real-estate business in Gowrie, to which he has since con- 
tinued to devote his attention. 

In October, 1903, Mr. Daughenbaugh was united in marriage to 
Miss Lottie Spangler, a daughter of John and Emma (Wingert) 
Spangler. The father came from Franklin, Illinois, to Gowrie, in 
1890, and is one of the prominent contractors and builders of that 
place. Mr. Daughenbaugh is at present a member of the town council. 
He is one of the active, enterprising citizens of Webster county and 
a man who is well and favorably known throughout this portion of 
the state- 



NORMAN H. HART. 



Nobility of character, iiigh principle and unfaltering devotion to 
duty in relation to home and family, to society and to the country at 
large, made Norman H. Hart a citizen whom to know was to respect 
and honor. There are few who have had as great influence upon the 
moral progress of Otho township and Webster county, his labors being 
particularly effective in Sunday-school work. His life therefore may 
w ell serve as an example to all who desire to travel the upward path, 
holding at all times to the highest standards of Christian manhood. 

.\lr. Hart was born in Glastonbury, Connecticut, July 10. 1826, 
and was a youth of eight years when in 1834 he accompanied his 
parents on their westward removal to Illinois, where he remained 
through the ensuing two decades. During that period he pursued a 



294 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

four years' course iu a mission institute near the city of Ouincy, 
Illinois. He came of the best Xew England stock, w itli \ery pro- 
nounced ideas of what constituted Christian manhood, and at that 
early period laid the foundation for what proved a singularly de- 
voted and useful life. In 1844 he first came to Iowa and for five 
years thereafter spent his time at Danville. In the fall of 1853 he 
once more came to this state in search of a location for the family and 
after looking carefully over the ground finally decided upon Webster 
county as the future home of the Harts. He then planted a crop of 
spring wheat and on horseback returned to Illinois to assist the others 
of the household in removing to the new home. The journey was made 
in June, 1854, with nine yoke of oxen. They settled in Otho town- 
ship and from that time until his death Norman H. Hart was con- 
tinuously a valuable factor in the political, social, business and moral 
development of the county. In the early days of his residence here 
he had to face all the difficulties, obstacles and hardships incident to 
pioneer life, but he possessed an optimistic nature in which there was 
no room for i>essimism. He always looked upon the bright side and 
when he encountered obstacles and difficulties met them with coura- 
geous and detennined spirit, so that they were easily overcome. His 
work was carefully and systematically conducted and he won a com- 
fortable competence, but the attainment of wealth was never the 
ultimate aim of his life. He desired to provide his family with a good 
living and succeeded in this but otherwise gave his time and attention 
to the higher, holier duties wliicli affect man in liis relations to his 
fellowmen and his Maker. He ix)ssessed a social nature and enjoyed 
the companionship of friends, always contributing his share toward 
making others happy. He was genial and svmipathetic. hospitable 
and kindly, and liis doors were ever open for the reception of friend 
and stranger alike. 

. Mr. Hart was often mentioned as an ideal husband and father. 
He cultivated the graces and virtues of natural helpfulness, good- 
will, harmony, peace and courtesy. He was married on the 21st of 
September, i860, to Jane Marrilla Fuller, who was born in Cayuga 
county. New York, Septeml)er 11. 1830, and was a daughter of Clark 
and Deborah Fuller, who were also natives of the Empire state and 
in 1834 removed with their family to Granville, Ohio. There the 
daughter was reared to womanhood and took up the work of school 
teaching. In 1853 she became a resident of Alarion, Iowa, and en- 
gaged in teaching school in that place and in Eldora until 1856, when 
she came to Webster county. She was a teacher in what is now 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 295 

Evanston and also in Otho townships and throughout her Hfe was 
deeply interested in the intellectual progress of the community. Unto 
Mr. and Mrs. Hart were born four children but tliree died in infancy, 
the surviving daughter being Mrs. Theta Wonders, the wife of Thomas 
A\'. Wonders, mentioned elsewhere in this volume. The Hart house- 
hold was a Christian home. Both Mr. and Mrs. Hart early in life 
identified themselves with the work of Christianity, and good-wiU and 
love radiated from their home, which was never "just four square 
walls." Its hospitality was proverbial and a Christlike sj^irit was ever 
there found. Mr. and ^Irs. Hart were ever deeply and actively inter- 
ested m the church work and each attended church services on the Sun- 
day prior to their demise. Mr. Hart passed awa}- XoNember 22. 190S. 
It was written df him: "L'ncle Xt)rnian Hart, by which endearing 
term lie was known by young and old, was no ordinary character either 
in intellectual power or religious principles and attainments. To a 
naturally vigorous and well cultivated mind he united sterling in- 
tegrity of principle, sincere and elevated piety, deep humility, ardent 
zeal for the divine glory, sincere love for his brethren and strong at- 
tachment to the church. His real Christian work began as teacher in 
Sunday school, in which field he continued a faithful and inspiring 
worker for sixty-two years. In addition to his work as teacher he 
was a successful organizer, and Webster county owes to the memory 
of this man of God a deep debt of gratitude for the moral tone and 
spiritual life bequeathed by him through the medium of his Sunday- 
school work. For fourteen years he was one of a quartette of Sun- 
day school workers who traveled the length and breadth of \Vebster 
county, organizing and reorganizing Sunday schools and holding 
Sunday-school conventions each year in every township. The other 
three members of the band were F. B. Drake, C. H. Payne and H. R. 
Bradshaw. This work ]5roved a constant impetus to the Sunday 
schools of the county and out of it grew several churches. He was a 
firm believer in the power of Christian song and in all his church and 
Sunday-school work he laid much stress upon this as an important 
factor. He believed that men were called to sing the gospel as well 
as to preach it. He was an instructor in vQcal music and organized 
many singing classes out of which went many to sing the gospel. 
Politically he was a lifelong republican, intensely patriotic and loval. 
He firmly believed that the republic is a child of Providence and ever 
recognized the hand of God in the guidance of its affairs and the 
building of its institutions. He deplored existing evils that stand in 
the way of the nation's greatest progress and glory, but he died witii 



296 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

a firm faith in the God of nations and in the future of his country. 
From what has already been said it scarcely needs emphasizing that 
his faith in the great doctrines of Christianity was complete and 
unbounded. To him the Bible was an inspired book, written by 'holy 
men of old as they were mo\ed Ijy the Holy Ghost.' He had no 
patience with theological trimmers. The word was the plummet, the 
ultimate standard by which he squared his life, and in the end of his 
days, when the body had grown weary, he was able to say: T have a 
pillow on which to rest my head,' and upon that pillow — even Jesus — 
he breathed his life out sweetly there. His Christian motto was — 
Onward and Upward ; but he had a working motto in addition to 
this, which was his guide in the everyday affairs of life as he went 
in and out before his fellowmen, 'Do good and lend, hoping for 
nothing again.' The universal testimony of those who knew him best 
tells how closely he lived to this standard." 

Mrs. Hart survived her husband for little more than a year and 
passed away on the 31st of December, 1909. The Rev. Francis Fawkes 
wrote of her: "A Godly woman in the prime of life, charged with 
vital energy, full of faith and virtue, reverent toward God, trustful in 
the Savior of men, and with a lofty ambition for ministering to human 
welfare — such a woman is the mightiest agent for righteousness the 
Almighty hath made on the earth. There are many such in the world 
and such was Mrs. Jane Hart when she first set foot on the soil of 
Webster county. The value of such a life to the moral and religious 
progress of society is far above that of gold and measured by any 
material standards of value, for when gold and gems lia\ e been molten 
and lost in the ashes of a burned world the fruit of such a life will 
aJjide and go on to grow and ripen forever and forever. Outside of the 
domestic circle where Mrs. Hart reigned as ((ueen. her greatest work 
for humanity was the instruction of the primary class of the Sunday 
school in the teachings of the Bible. Her class usually numbered from 
fifteen to forty pupils, so in the course of a half century quite an army 
of these little people passed under her supervision and teaching. They 
were thus in the most impressionable period of life brought under the 
influence and in close contact with a Christian and motherlx- woman, 
who took great interest in them long after the days of childhood. Of 
the number who passed through this primary class, many remembered 
the precepts of their teacher when they reached years of maturity and 
reduced these precepts to service in a Christian life, and after marriage 
sent another generation of children to the same teacher. Mrs. Hart 
was one of the founders and organizers of the Otho Church Aid 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COl'XTY 297 

Society, a body of Christian women that for more than a generation 
liave been famous for their charitable good works. In ahnost every 
department of church work in which a lady could act, her long life 
has been one of incessant willing activity until sickness and weakness 
arrested her efforts. The world's great need is that such lives should 
be multiplied." 

The memory of two such noble lives cannot but inspire and 
encourage all who came within the radius of their influence. Viewing 
such a life record as theirs, one cannot but be impressed with the fact 
that it is not from the few conspicuous deeds of life that the blessings 
chiefly come which make the world better, sweeter, happier, but from 
the countless lowly ministries of the everydays, the little faithfulnesses 
that fill long years. 



TAMES ^\^ RYAN. 



James W. Ryan, whose service as steward of the poor farm has 
won him recognition not only as a capable agriculturist but as a 
business man of keen judgment and more than average executive 
ability, is a son of one of Webster county's pioneers. Although 
born in the state of New York, his natal day being the 30th of Janu- 
ary, 1863, he is of Irish extraction, his parents, Thomas and Cather- 
ine (Dugan) Ryan, being natives of the Emerald isle. The father 
came to .\merica in his early manhood, locating in the state of New 
York, where he obtained employment on a railroad. After about 
fifteen years residence there he remo\'ed with his family to Iowa, 
locating in Webster county in 1868. He invested his small capital 
in a tract of land in Badger township, which he diligently cultivated 
the remainder of his life, his death occurring on his farm in October, 
1872. He was long survived by the mother, who passed away in 
April, 1905. 

James \\'. Ryan was a child of nuly fi\c years when he accuni- 
jianied his parents on their renioxal lo Iowa, and a lad of nine when 
his father died. In common with the other children of the comnni- 
nity he began his education in the district school, but completed his 
course of study in the Shenandoah College at .Shenandoah, this slate. 
After leaving college he taught schodi lOr one Urni in Badger town- 
ship, and then purchased eighty acres of land and turned his atten- 
tion to agricultural pursuits. Having been reared on a farm he was 



298 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

thoroughly familiar with the practical methods of agriculture and 
met with a fair measure of success in the cultivation of his place. He 
was unusually diligent and enterprising, and ambitious to rapidly 
forge ahead. In connection with his farming he also was manager 
of the Humboldt Creamery Company for seven years. Although 
the average man would consider either occupation sufificient to en- 
gage his entire attention. Mr. Ryan success full_\- managed both and 
was never absent from the factory for a day during the period of his 
connection with it. He subsequently sold his farm, investing the 
proceeds in a hundred and sixty acres of land located in the same 
township. There he continued his agricultural pursuits for two 
years, at the expiration of which time he sold his jilace and became 
identified with the commercial activities of Fort Dodge. During the 
succeeding seventeen years he was engaged in the implement and 
hardware business in the latter city under the firm name of the Ryan 
Implement & Hardware Company. Feeling that he would like to 
withdraw from the confinement and exactions of commercial life he 
dis]3osed of his store several years ago and subsequently accepted the 
appointment to the office of steward of the poor farm. Mr. Ryan 
is exceptionally well adapted for the responsibilities of this position, 
as he has practically evidenced during the period of his .service. He 
is a man of systematic business methods, keen discernment and sound 
judgment in addition to which he possesses executive ability of more 
than average standard. All of these have been exercised w ith most 
gratifying results since he entered ujxju tiie duties of his present 
office, and substantially manifest his fitness for the work. When 
he took possession of the farm the receipts were only three hundred 
and sixty-nine dollars per year, while under his supcr\ision there has 
been a marked annual increase until in 191 1 his books recorded re- 
ceipts to the amount of two thousand, one hundred and sixty-five 
dollars, and 191 2 bids fair to reach three thousand. The expenses in 
connection with operations have shown a corresponding decrease, thus 
further enlarging the amount he has annually sa\ed the county. 

In October, 1893, Mr. Ryan was united in marriage to Miss X'ellie 
J. O'Brien, a daughter of William and Catherine (O'Connor) O'Brien, 
the father a native of Wisconsin and the mother of Ireland. Mr. 
O'Brien, who was a railroad contractor, came to Webster county 
during the pioneer period, locating in Fort Dodge, where he pur- 
sued his business until his death, which was caused by a d3'namite 
explosion in November. 1887. The mother is still living and con- 
tinues to reside in Fort Dodge. Mr. and Mrs. Ryan have become 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUiNTY 299 

the parents of six children, as follows: Joseph, who has just grad- 
uated from St, Joseph's College at Dubuque; James, who is attend- 
ing high school at Fort Dodge; j\Iarie, who is a student in Sacred 
Heart Academy at Fort Dodge ; Leo, who goes to the district school ; 
Catherine ; and Robert. 

The parents and elder members of the family are communicants 
of the Roman Catholic church, and fraternally Mr. Ryan is identi- 
fied with the Ancient Order of United Workmen, Knights of Colum- 
bus and the Catholic Order of Foresters, being a charter member of 
the latter organization. He gives his political support to the demo- 
cratic party and. while residing in Badger township, served as clerk 
of the township. Sound principles, upright standards of citizenship 
and general reliability in business transactions have united in win- 
ning 'Sir. Ryan the respect and esteem of his neighbors and fellow 
townsmen, who hold him in high regard and accord him their stanch 
friendship. 



EDAIOXD DAVID RL'SSELL, M. D. 

Dr. Edmond D. Russell, now a practicing physician in Fort Dodge, 
Iowa, is a keen student of the great scientific principles which under- 
lie the practice of medicine and his ability has gained him a prominent 
place in the medical fraternity. He was born in County Limerick, 
Ireland, in 1869, and obtained his early education in the Christian 
Brothers schools of that country. His family later remo\-ed to Dub- 
lin, the capital of Ireland, where he was graduated in classics and 
mathematics in the high school of that city. He spent two years at 
the Jesuits College at Clongowswood, County Kildare, and was a 
schoolmate of Frank Mahoney, the famous literateur and author, 
whose fame has been immortalized liy his "Bells of Shandon." Not 
satisfied with this splendid education Dr. Russell determined to pur- 
sue his studies further and with this intention entered the L^^niversity 
of Dublin, from which he was graduated after completing the pre- 
scribed course of study. He came to .America, and having determined 
to make the i)raclice of medicine his life \\i)rk entered the medical 
department of the Iowa .State I'niversity. The quality of the work 
which he did in this capacity soon gave him the recognition of the 
faculty and made him popular with his classmates, Wlicn he had 
completed his course he was appointed instructor in the university 



300 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

under Dr. Chase, his duties to consist of tutoring deficient students 
in the matriculation requirements. He held this position for some 
time. When he left the university he settled in Clare. Webster county, 
and immediately engaged in the practice of his profession. Rapid 
and enviable success attended his efforts and he was soon known as 
one of the able and efficient physicians of his adopted city. He has 
always been a firm believer in the value of a thorough vocational 
ecjuipment. When he came to America he had already attained a 
degree of education far beyond the common order, but after some 
years of medical practice in Clare, Iowa, he removed to Chicago in 
order to further perfect himself in medicine and surgery. He took 
post-graduate courses, two at the Chicago Clinical School and two at 
the Chicago Post Graduate School, and when he at length definitely 
completed his studies he was equipped with a splendid education along 
specialized lines. This has been of great value to him in his life and 
has been the means of his gaining his present high place among his 
his medical brethren. 

Dr. Russell maintained his residence in Clare and was active in 
the practice of his profession in that city until 1910 when he removed 
to h'ort Dodge and has since been prominent in this city. Dr. Rus- 
sell has, besides his medical career, one other vital and important m- 
terest in life. He is an ambitious and distinguished journalist and 
his writings have obtained for him a reputation for clear, concise and 
striking literary style. His family has always been interested finan- 
cially with the Sullivans in the operation of the Dublin Nation, one 
of the largest newspapers in Ireland. He has kept up his contribu- 
tions to these journals and is well known in Webster county as a 
graphic and telling writer. He has now in the press a book of his 
essays contributed at various times in .America and in Ireland. He 
founded and edited for two years a newspaper in Clare called the 
Clare Examiner. He was prominently identified with the local press 
for several vears and only relin(|uished his connection with it when 
he was comi)elled to do so by the pressing duties in connection with 
his profession. For fourteen years he was a contributor to the Mes- 
senger of Fort Dodge and within the past years has devoted his time 
exclusively to contributions to the medical press and to his profes- 
sional work. 

During the course of his career Dr. Russell has acquired a com- 
fortable fortune which he has invested judiciously. He owns a farm 
in Clare and a licautiful and commodious home at 1326 Second ave- 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 301 

nue, South, Fort Dodge. He is interested in tlie business develop- 
ment of Clare, Iowa, and owns a line business block in tliat city. 

Politically he is a republican and takes an intelligent interest in 
national and local affairs but is prevented from holding public office 
by the arduous duties of his literary and professional work. He is 
a member of the Catholic Order of Foresters, the Ancient Order of 
Hibernians and the Knights of Columbus. He also is prominent in 
the Onlcr of Eagles and in the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks. 
He gives his allegiance to the Roman Catholic church and is an active 
worker in religious circles. 

He married in 1899 Miss Johannah Wall, a daughter of Pierce 
and Johannah S. Wall, both natives of Ireland. To their union were 
born si.x children. Dr. Russell is a thorough and interested student 
of medicine and of broad culture along literary lines. He adds to 
his ability as a physician and to his remarkable and specialized knowl- 
edge in this line the distinction of being a courteous and refined gen- 
tleman and a man who in every relation of life is without fear and 
without reproach. 



THOMAS \V. W^ONDERS. 

Thomas W. Wonders is busily engaged in the operation of an ex- 
cellent farm of one hundred and twenty acres on section 20, Otho 
township. His birth occurred in Kewanee, Illinois, on the 5th of 
September, i860, his parents being Thomas and Elizabeth (Bennett) 
Wonders, more extended mention of whom is made on another page 
of this work in connection with the sketch of John W. Wonders, a 
brother of our subject. 

Thomas W. Wonders acquired his education largely in Boone 
county, Iowa, being four years of age when the family home was 
there established. He went into the coal mines when a youth of 
twelve and was thus employed until twenty-five years of age. About 
1885 he came to Webster county and embarked in the mercantile busi- 
ness in association with his brother at Kalo, while later the brothers 
opened a store at Otho, continuing to operate the same until 1901. 
For some time afterward Mr. Wonders was not identified with any 
business pursuit and traveled to some extent. Subsequently, in asso- 
ciation with others, he became engaged in the brick and tile business 
at Kalo, remaining an active factor in its conduct for about li\e vears 



302 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

and still retaining an interest in the concern, which is known as the 
Central Brick & Tile Company. He next operated a rented farm for 
two years, \i:as then married and has since devoted his attention to the 
cultivation of his wife's property, which comprises one hundred and 
twenty acres of rich and productive land on section 20, Otho town- 
ship. In the work of the fields he has employed modern methods of 
agriculture and success has attended his undertakings. 

On the 28th of December, 191 1, Mr. Wonders was united in mar- 
riage to I\Irs. Theta (Hart) Findlay, the widow of George Findla}'^ 
and a daughter of Xorman and Jane (Fuller) Hart, a sketch of whom 
appears on another page of this volume. Theta Hart, who was bom 
on the home farm on the 27th of October, 1863, gave her hand in 
marriage to George Findlay, a farmer of Otho township, who died 
on the 17th of January, 1908. They adopted two children : Ra}anond, 
who is twenty-two- years of age and follows farming in Otho town- 
ship; and Berdena, who is fourteen years old and lives at home. 

At the polls Mr. Wonders supports the prohibition ticket, for it 
is his opinion that the licpior traffic is an e\il which should be eradi- 
cated. In religious faith he is a Methodist, while his wife belongs 
to the Congregational church. Mr. and Mrs. Wonders are people of 
highest worth and respectability, and their pleasant home finds favor 
with their numerous friends. 



CHARLES H. WOOD.\RD. 

Charles H. Woodard is engaged in the real-estate business in 
Gowrie, Iowa. He was born in Vermont, in 1868, and is a son of 
Jane Woodard, who now resides at What Cheer, Iowa. At the early 
age of five years he came to Redfield, Dallas county, Iowa, and took 
up iii^^ abode with John Payton. who was a farmer. He continued 
to live with Mr. Payton until he was sixteen years of age, during 
wliich time he received his elementary education in the public schools 
and later pursued a course of instruction in the Dexter Business Col- 
lege. He afterward was engaged for one year in teaching in 
that institution. He later took up work in a general store at Ken- 
nedy. Iowa, where he remained for three years, after which 
time he was employed as a traveling salesman for a Chicago grain 
comjjany and continued in that business for two months. In the fall 
of 1890 he established his residence in Gowrie. where he engaged in 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 303 

buying grain for Councilman & Company of Chicago. He later re- 
ceived from President Cleveland the appointment of postmaster of 
Gowrie and in that office continued for four years. He then had 
charge of the elevators and was station agent at Lena until i8g6, 
after which time he established himself in the real-estate business 
under the firm name of the Woodard Land Company and has since 
continued to devote his attention to that business, in which he has 
been successful, and is now the owner of two thousand acres of land. 
Mr. W'oodard is affiliated with the democratic party and is a member 
of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows at Gowrie and the Knights 
of Pythias. He has served as councilman for four years and was 
elected to the office of mayor, in which he served for two years. He 
is at present justice of the peace and is a member of the park com- 
mission. Mr. Woodard is one of the well known aind enterprising 
citizens of W^ebster county and a man who is held in high esteem by 
all his friends and associates. 



WILLIAM SCHNURR. 



William Schnurr and his brother, George, proprietors of the Kalo 
Brick & Tile Company, have one of the largest plants of its kind 
in the state. The former has been a resident of Webster county for 
almost one-third of a century and is prominent in business circles 
here. His birth occurred in Buffalo, Scott county, Iowa, on the 23d 
of October, 1870, his parents being Andrew and Amelia (Haase) 
Schnurr, the former a native of Germany and the latter of Ohio. 
Andrew Schnurr crossed the .\tlantic to the United States when a 
youth of thirteen, locating at Cincinnati, Ohio, where he worked as 
a farm hand to the time of his marriage. wSubsequently he removed 
to Memphis, Tennessee, and was engaged in steamboating on the 
Mississippi for some time. Later he came to Iowa, locating at liuffalo, 
Scott county, w here he was eni|)loyed as weighmaster by a coal com- 
pany for several years. Removing to Chickasaw county, he purchased 
a farm of eighty acres and devoted his attention to its 0])eration for 
four years. On the expiralinn nf lh;it period be took up his abode 
in Otho township, Webster county, this state, being here employed as 
weighmaster for the Craig Coal Company until 1893. In that year 
he embarked in the lumber and grain business at Otho, successfully 
conducting an enter])rise in thai line until njO-', when he sold out to 
his son-in-law, I. W . Wnudcrs. and retired frnm active business. 



304 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

He has attained the age of seventy-two years and resides at L'pland, 
California. His wife was called to her final rest on the 29th of 
Novemher, 1902. 

William Schnurr attended school in Chickasaw county, Iowa, for 
three years, and then continued his studies in Webster county, being 
ten years of age when I)rougl:t here by his parents. When a youth of 
fifteen he entered the employ of the Craig Coal Company at Otho, 
remaining with that concern until 1897. In that year, with his 
brother George, he i)urchased the brick and tile plant of Johnson 
Brothers near Kalo and they have operated the same continuously 
since, under the firm name of the Kalo Brick & Tile Company. 
Their daily out]nit is aliout eight car loads, and the enterprise is 
continually growing under the able management and direction of its 
])roprietors. William Schnurr is a stockholder and director in the 
following concerns: the Otho Mercantile Company, the Leighton 
Supply Company of Fort Dodge, the Fort Dodge National Bank and 
the Monarch Telephone Manufacturing Company of Fort Dodge. He 
has a handsome residence in Otho and also owns three hundred and 
twenty acres of valuable farm land in Otho township in association 
with his brother George. 

On the 20th of June. 1895. Mr. Schnurr was united in marriage to 
Miss Elizabeth Dawson, a daughter of Jerry and Mary J. (Wonders) 
Dawson, tlie funuer a native of P^ngland and the latter of Illinois. 
Mr. and Mrs. .Solunirr lia\e three children, as follows: Mary A., 
who is eie\en years old; and .Vndrew D. and Lee. who arc nine and 
se\en years of age, respectively. 

William Schnurr is a stanch re])ublican and in religious faith a 
Methodist. Fraternally he is connected with the local organization 
of the Modern Woodmen of America. His upright and honorable 
methods commend him to the confidence of all with whom he comes 
in contact, either in business or .social relations, and no man in 
the community is held in higher esteem than is Mr. Schnurr. 



THOMAS DOXAHOE. 



Among those who have been prominently connected with the prog- 
ress and development of Clare must be mentioned Thomas Donahoe, 
president of the State Bank, who has also been actively identified with 
local ])olitics and has l)cen tlic incumbent of. the oftice of treasurer ever 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 305 

since the town was incorporated. A native of Pennsylvania, his birth 
occurred in the town of Hazelton, on the 25th of June, 1847, his parents 
being James and Ann (Garahan) Donahoe, natives of Ireland. Of 
their marriage were born eiglit children, of whom our subject is the 
eldest. The other members of the family are as follows: Peter M., 
who passed away in 1910; Charles, whose death occurred in 1859; 
Ellen, who died in 1854; Mary, who died in i860; Rose Ann, the first 
white child born in Pocahontas county; Mary J.; and Charles J. 
mayor of Clare, where he is also engaged in the mercantile business. 
The father emigrated to the United States from Ireland in 1839, 
being at that time twenty-four years of age. For a short period he 
made his home in the state of New York, 1jut he suljsequently went to 
Pennsylvania. He was a miner and for sixteen years was employed 
in the coal fields of the latter .state. In the .spring of 1855, he removed 
witli his family to Dubuque, Iowa, where he prospected for a year. 
At the expiration of that time he continued his journey westward to 
Webster county, and for four years worked in the mines of L'ort 
Dodge, during which time the family resided in Pocahontas county, 
where he had preempted a quarter section of land, and he subsequently 
turned his attention to agricultural pursuits. For seven years he ap- 
plied himself diligently to the cultivation of his farm, and then re- 
turned to Webster county. He here continued farming in Johnson 
township, where he bought a hundred and sixty acres of land- The 
dexelopment of this latter property engaged his undivided attention 
until 1887, when he retired and removed to Clare, where his death 
occurred in April, 1899. The mother passed away in September, 1895. 
Thomas Donahoe was eight years of age when his parents left 
Pennsyhania and nine when they located in Webster county. His 
education was begun in the public schools of his native state and con- 
tinued in those of Iowa, following wliicii he assisted in llie cultiva- 
tion of the home farm. He remained with his parents until 1895, and 
in August of that year he removed to Clare and assumed tlie duties 
of cashier of the State Bank. He retained this position until 191 1, 
w hen he was promoted to the office of president, which he still retains. 
The bank was organized in May, 1889, and during the intervening 
years it has developed into one of the strong financial institutions of 
the county. Mr. Donahoe has acquired extensive realty interests in 
tills section, owning farms in both Jack.son and Jolinson townships, 
and also property in Clare. He is a stockholder in the cement plant 
at Gilmore and is interested in various other local industries, I^eing 
one of the substantial citizens of Webster countv. 



306 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

Mr. Donahoe is a communicant of the Roman Catliolic church. 
PoHticaH}^ he is a democrat and served as clerk of Johnson township 
for sixteen years and he has also lield the office of trustee, while during 
the period of his residence in Johnson township he discharged the 
duties of assessor. He has always been interested in the development 
of the community and has supported all movements calculated to ad- 
vance the welfare of its citizens. The practical ideas and progressive 
methods of Mr. Donahoe, as manifested in the discharge of his duties 
in both public and private life, no less than his sterling qualities of 
character have won him the esteem and high regard of many of his 
fellow townsmen. 



FRANK A. SCHNURR, 



Frank A, Schnurr, an enteqarising and successful agriculturist 
residing in Otho township, ojierates a well improved fann of one 
hundred and sixty acres on section 7, which he owns in association 
with his brother William. His birth occurred in Memphis, Tennessee, 
on the 6th of November, 1864, his parents being Andrew and Amelia 
(Haase) Schnurr, the former a native of Germany and the latter of 
Ohio. .Andrew Schnurr crossed the Atlantic to the United States 
when a youth of thirteen, locating at Cincinnati, Ohio, where he 
worked as a farm hand until the time of his marriage. Following 
tliat important e\'ent in his life he reniuxed U> Memphis, Tennessee, 
being engaged in steamboating on the Mississippi for some time. Sub- 
sequently he came to Iowa, locating at Buffalo, Scott county, where 
he was employed as weighmaster by a coal company for several years. 
Removing to Chickasaw county, he purchased a farm of eight)- acres 
and devoted his attention to its operation for four years. On the ex- 
piration of that period he took up his abode in Otho township. Web- 
ster county, this state, being here employed as weighmaster for the 
Craig Coal Company until 1893. In that year he emljarked in the 
lumber and grain business at Otho, successfully conducting an en- 
teqirise of that character until 1902, when he sold out to his son-in- 
law, J. W. Wonders, and retired from active business cares. He has 
now- attained the age of seventy-two years and resides at Upland, 
California. His wife was called to her final rest on the 29th of 
November. 1902. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 307 

Frank A. Schnurr, who was two years of age when Ijrouglit to 
this state by his parents, obtained his early education in Buffalo, Scott 
county, and later continued his studies in Chickasaw county. After 
putting aside his text-books he worked for his father, remaining un- 
der the parental roof until twenty-three years of age. For about 
twenty years thereafter he was engaged in coal mining and then rented 
a tract of land, which he cultivated for four years. At the end of that 
time, in association with his brother, William, he purchased a farm 
of one hundred and sixty acres on section 7, Otho township, impro\ed 
the property and has since been busily engaged in its operation. His 
undertakings as an agriculturist have been attended with success, the 
well tilled fields annually yielding golden harvests in return for the 
care and labor which he bestows upon them. He is a stockholder in 
the Fanners Elevator Company of Otho and is widely recognized 
as a substantial and representative citizen of his community. 

In November, 1886, Mr. Schnurr was united in marriage to Miss 
Kate Trvin, a daughter of Walter and Helen (Grant) Irvin, who were 
born in Ireland and Scotland respectively. Our subject and his wife 
have seven children, as follows: Millie, who gave her hand in mar- 
riage to Otto Bargreen and resides at Fort Dodge, Iowa; Maude; 
Blanche ; Jennie ; William ; Robert ; and Edna. 

Mr. Schnurr gives his political allegiance to the republican party 
and is one of the present trustees of Otho township. He has also 
served as school director, the cause of education ever finding in him 
a stanch champion. His religious faith is that of the Methodist 
church, while fraternally he is identified with the Modern Woodmen 
of America. Earnest effort and intelligently directed labor have 
ever constituted the salient features of his business career, while his 
life has been governed by high principles that have gained for him the 
respect and good-will of his fellowmen. 



FRAXK n. I-RAHM. 



Frank H. Frahm, filling the office of county supervisor is found 
to be a faithful and efficient incumbent in that position. More- 
over, he has long been well known as a representative farmer of 
the county. He was born in Coojier township, \Vebstcr county, 
Iowa, Novcmhcr 16, 1871, a son of (i)acliim and Lauretta (Ebert) 
Frahm, both of whom were natives of Germany. The father 
came to America when he was but sixteen years of age. When 



308 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

the Civil war broke out. he enlisted for service in Company I, 
Thirty-second Iowa Volunteer Infantry and served throughout 
the war. Upon his arrival in this country he settled in Chicago, 
but before the beginning of the war removed to Fort Dodge. 
After he was mustered out of service he returned to this city and 
purchased a farm near Dayton. He resided there only a short 
time before selling and purchasing the south half of the north- 
west quarter of section 36 in Cooper township. He immediately 
began improving this property and was actively engaged in its 
cultivation until 1894. During those years he brought it under 
a high state of cultivation and his life was one of intense and well 
directed activity. He also purchased the south half of the north- 
east quarter of section 35, the north half of the southeast quarter 
of section 35 in Cooper township and the northwest quarter 
of section 2^. In 1894 he removed to Manson, Iowa, where he 
purchased another farm. He resided there until his death which 
occurred on the 24th of October. 1S97. The mother is still living 
on the old home place in Cooper township at the age of seventy- 
three years. 

F'rank H. Frahm spent his boyhood and youth under the par- 
ental roof, and the common schools of Iowa afiforded him his 
educational advantages until he was prepared to enter the German 
schools of Fort Dodge. He remained with his parents until he 
became of age when he began to learn stationary engineering. 
He worked at that trade in I'ort Dodge intermittently for about 
si.\ vears. .\fter his father's death he determined to take up 
agricultural pursuits and he purchased a farm which his father 
had previously owned. His early home training had given him 
some experience in agriculture and he has become a most suc- 
cessful farmer. His is one of the most impro\'ed one hundred and 
si.xtv acre farms in the county, lie also devotes considerable at- 
tention to stock-raising. 

In February, 1897. I\[r. Frahm was married to Miss Christina 
Yunker, a daughter of H. and Etta (Zimmerman) Yunker, both 
natives of Germany, their daughter Christina having been born 
there F'ebruarv 18, 1870. The parents never came to this coun- 
try. In his native land the father was a miller by trade and 
worked at that occupation the greater part of his life. Later he pur- 
chased twenty acres of land which he operated until his death 
which occurred in 1909. The mother passed away in 1886. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 309 

Both Mr. and ^Irs. Fralim are members of tlie Presbyterian church 
and are most highly esteemed people. Mr. Frahm belongs to 
the Masonic Lodge, the Rednien and the Ancient Order of United 
A\'orkmen. His political allegiance has ever been given to the 
republican party and his fellow citizens have elected him a mem- 
ber of the county board of supervisors. No public trust reposed 
in him has ever been betrayed in the slightest degree, and his 
fidelity to honorable and manly principles in fraternal, social, 
religious and political circles has ever won for him the good-will 
of those with whom he has been brought into contact. 



\\TLLI.\M CREGAN. 



William Cregan has been a resident of Webster county since he 
was four years of age and has for some time been successfully en- 
gaged in various lines of business activity in Barnum, where he is 
now conducting an up-to-date and fast-growing general store. He 
was born in Illinois in October, 1873, and is a son of Robert and 
Bridget (Welch) Cregan, natives of Ireland. His father came to 
America in his early youth and settled in New York, where he worked 
out by the month as a farm hand for some time. He later went to 
Illinois, where he operated a farm until he removed to Webster county. 
Here he rented land in Johnson township which he cultivated until 
he purchased one hundred and twenty acres in the same section, w hich 
he operatetl until 1909, when he disposed of his holdings and moved 
to Barnum. wht-re he is now li\ing- retired. His wife passed away 
in Sejiteniber, lyi i. 

Mr. Cregan was reared and educated in Webster county, being 
four years of age when he came to this section with his parents. 
When he grew to manhood he herded cattle for a few years, abandon- 
ing this occupation in order to engage in general agriculture. He 
rented a farm in Johnson township and was successful in the cultiva- 
tion (jf the soil fur five years. .\t the end of that time he moved to 
Barnum and conducted a livery for hve years. He sold out his 
interests at the end of that time and became i<kMUifie<l with the drug 
business for a similar period, after which he estal)lished himself in 
the mercantile line. He strives to keep a large stock, complete in 
every detail and has his goods tastefully and attractively arranged. 
He owns the building which he occupies and in it carries on a fiourish- 



voi. n— 1 8 



310 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

ing and constantly expanding business, which makes him one of 
the substantial and enterprising merchants of his city. He owns in 
addition an eighty-acre tract of land in Minnesota. 

Mr. Cregan is a stanch republican and always votes the party 
ticket. He is a member of the Roman Catholic church. His business 
success has come as a natural result of industry and intelligent activity. 
He strives to keep pace with advancing progress and never allows 
his stock to become out of date. He keeps his methods of operation 
modern, while he adheres constantly to the old standard of strict 
honestv in all the relations of his life. 



JOHN W. WONDERS. 



John W. Wonders, successfully engaged in business as the pro- 
prietor of a lumberyard at Otho, was born in Illinois in July, 1863, 
his parents being Thomas and Elizabeth (Bennett) Wonders, both 
of whom were natives of England. The father, who worked as a 
miner in that country, was employed in the coal mines of Pennsyl- 
vania after coming to the United States. Subsequently he removed 
to Illinois and later came to Iowa, locating in Boone county, where 
he was engaged in mining for some time. Coming to Webster 
county, he first worked in the coal mines here but afterward em- 
barked in the mercantile business at Kalo, conducting an establish- 
ment of that character until his death, which occurred in 1884. His 
wife was called to her final rest in 1889. 

John W. Wonders, who was about nine years of age when he 
came to Webster county with his parents, was here educated and 
reared to manhood. He embarked in the mercantile business at 
Kalo in association with his brothers and later opened a store at 
Ogden, which was subsequently closed out. The brothers then began 
business at Otho, conducting stores at Kalo and Otho for about 
twentv vears, on the exjMration of which period they dissolved the 
partnership. John W. Wonders afterward made his way to Eort 
Dodge, where he spent a year with the Granger Implement Com- 
pany, in which he still retains an interest. Returning to Otho. he 
purchased a lumberyard and has since been successfully engaged 
in business along this line. He is a stockholder in the Farmers 
Elevator Company of Otho and well deserves recognition among 
the substantial and progressive citizens of the community. 



HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 311 

In October, 1890. Mr. Wonders was iinitetl in marriage to .Miss 
Emma Schnurr, who was born near Davenport, Iowa, in 1867, her 
parents being Andrew and Amelia (Hasse) Schnurr. Her father, 
who was for a number of years engaged in the lumber and grain 
business at Otho, is now a resident of California. The mother is 
deceased, her demise occurring in November, 1903. Mr. and Mrs. 
Wonders have three children, Sylvia, Frank and Donald. John W. 
Wonders exercises his right of franchise in support of the prohibi- 
tion ticket, being a stanch advocate of the cause of temperance. In 
religious faith he is a Methodist. Both he and his estimable wife 
have a host of warm friends throughout the community and justly 
merit the regard and esteem which is uniformly accorded them. 



WILLARD C. AIXS WORTH. 

Willard C. Ainswqrth is the owner of a valuable farm of four 
hundred and eighty acres in Douglas township, where he has been 
identified w'ith the agricultural interests for over forty-five years, 
having located here soon after he was mustered out of the army 
in 1865. He belongs to an old New York family and was born in 
Madison county, that state, on December 6, 1837, his parents be- 
ing Leroy and Mary (Carpenter) Ainsworth. The parents passed 
their entire lives in the Empire state, where the father followed 
the blacksmith's trade. He passed away in 1892 and the mother 
in 1884. 

The first twenty-three years in the life of Willard C Ainsworth 
were passed in the state of his nativity. He was reared at home 
and given the advantages of a lietter education than was re- 
ceived by the average youth of that period. In i860, he left the 
parental home and came to Iowa, locating in Hamilton county. 
After a year's residence there he removed to Boone, where he 
taught school until May, 1864. when he went to Davenport and 
enlisted in the army. He went to tiie front as a member of 
Company D, Thirty-second Iowa Volunteer Infantry, remaining 
in the service until the close of hostilities, during which period 
he was incapacitated for a time by a broken leg. When mustered 
out he returned to Boone county, but suhsec|ucntly came to W^eb- 
ster county, purchasing eighty acres of land in Douglas town- 
ship, which formed tlie nucleus of his present farm. He 



312 HISTORY OF WEBSTER COUNTY 

experienced many discouragements and hardships during those 
early days, having been compeHed to pay for his original tract of 
land three times, because of a dispute in the- title. Owing to the 
scarcity of money and the general conditions then existing in 
the business world this unfortunate circumstance greatly retarded 
his progress and to a man of less resolution of purpose would 
have proven hopelessly discouraging. Mr. Ainsworth, however, 
is most persistent and enterprising and applied himself with the 
determination that enabled him to surmount his difficulties and 
gradually forge ahead. Y'ear by year he was able to advance his 
interests and extend the boundaries of his farm until he held the 
title to four hundred and eighty acres of fertile land. The place 
is well improved and equipped and is one of the valuable prop- 
erties of the township. Mr. Ainsworth has prospered in his un- 
dertakings of recent years and is now numbered among the sub- 
stantial citizens of his community. Beside farming interests he is 
one of the stockholders of the First National Bank of Fort D'odge. 

In Webster county, in Se])leml)er. \X(>^. ]\lr. Ainsworth was 
married to Miss Julia A. Stexens. a daughter of Socrates G. 
and Harriet (Jones) Stevens, who are mentioned at greater 
length elsewhere in this work. To them have been born five 
children, as follows: Harriet M., who lives at home; Minnie A., 
the wife of E. D. \\'ilson. an attorney at Jefferson. Iowa: W'illard 
L., wdio is operating his father's farm : Adelaide L., formerly a 
practicing physician of Waterloo, Iowa, who passed away in 
April, 1904; and Alburn S.. who is a lawyer at Thompson Falls. 
Montana. 

The family affiliate with the Congregational church, and fra- 
ternally Air. Ainsworth is a member of the Grand Army of the 
Republic. Politically he is a republican, giving his support to 
the progressive faction of that party. A man oi many estimable 
qualities, honest and upright in matters of business and straight- 
forward and reliable in all transactions. Mr. Ainsworth enjoys the 
respect and esteem of his neighbors and fellow citizens, who have 
had ample opportunity to prove his worth during the long period 
of his residence in the community. 



INDEX 



Acher, A. E 19ii 

Ainsworth, W. C 311 

Allstot, C. H 138 

Alton, W. E 16G 

Anderson, C. A SO 

Anderson, S. E. E 6l' 

Arent, Charles 106 

Ashton. Thomas 63 

Ashton, J. B < 65 

Baldwin, H. H ..217 

Baldwin, Dr. H. H 277 

Barrowman, 'Wiilliam 206 

Bass, James 110 

Beshey, A. L 130 

Bloom, Erie 24.5 

Bohnenkamp, C. A 36 

Brown, E. V 119 

Burgfried, Edward 280 

Burke, P. T 279 

Burnquisr, B. B 49 

Campbell, .Tames 37 

Carey, ilary A 88 

Carter, Stewart 86 

Christensen, Chris 182 

Coffin, L. S 148 

Colby, W. H. H 209 

Collins, Hugh 90 

Corey, M, N U 

Courtright, J. E 22') 

Craig, Frank, Sr 243 

Cregan, 'William 309 

Daly, M. R 79 

Daiighenbaugh, A. F 292 

Davidson, E. T 201 

Dawley, A, JI 207 

Dawson, T. H 143 

Dean, S. M 117 

Doftiver, J. J 272 

Dolliver, J. P IS 

Dolliver. V. B 284 

Donahoe, Thomas 304 

Drake, F. B 130 

Duncombe, C. F 282 

Diincombe, J. P 5 

Dunning, E. M 96 

Dwyer, J. D 46 

Dwyer, Owen 236 

Eastman, J. H 17) 

Ekfelt, A. J 48 



Fallon, J. C 102 

Faw kes, Francis 215 

Findlav, C. V 249 

Flanagan, P. F 219 

Flvnn, P. T 104 

Ford, J. F 91 

Forsberg, W. 193 

Fortney, G. W 247 

Fortnev, J. D 100 

Frahm, F. H 307 

Granger, C. L . . .211 

Green, Darwin 97 

Gruver, Perrv 124 

Guhl, A. H. F 220 

Gnrnetf, M. D 54 

Gurnett, T. F 224 

Hagans, J. W 136 

Halligan, T. J 180 

Hanrahan, .John 192 

Hanson, O. C 70 

Hart, G. D 74 

Hart, N. H 293 

Hastings, E. E 44 

Haviland, W. C 227 

Haviland, W. E 107 

Hcaly, M. F 256 

Hepler, C. B 176 

Houge, A. E 81 

Houge, P. A 271 

Hunter, B. P 238 



Jones, A. W. 



68 



Kendall, Eilward 202 

Kime, .1. W 121 

Knudson, C. C 265 

Knutson, A<lolph 162 

Knutson, Alfred 162 

Larrabee, Charles 6 

Larrabee, Frederic 213 

Larrabee, William 31 

Lauderdale. Maude 134 

Lind, J. A 82 

Lindberg, A. C 42 

Lindberg, J. A 262 

Lindquist, J. A 98 

Lingard, G. E 145 

Lingard, William 140 

Lowrv, J. D 17 

Lundberg, C. V 188 

Lutz, F. F 179 



313 



314 



INDEX 



MeDermott, W. J 85 

McNeely, Theulious 92 

McQuilkin, A. D 254 

Mallinger, Peter 146 

Mason, G. W 233 

Messerole. C. G 289 

Miller, L. V 183 

Mitchell, P. M 260 

MollenJioff, August 286 

Monk, J. F 33 

Mulroney, J. M 172 

Myrland", L. 142 

Newdeek, L. W 163 

Nicholson, W. Ii 56 

Oleson, O. M 101 

Olney, F. B 38 

Parsons, C. D 129 

Patton, A. F 50 

Pearsons, G. B 244 

Peterson, T. K 190 

Post, "W. J 291 

Powers, Walter 269 

Pratt, H. M 237 

Pratt, L. H 274- 

Prusia, F. E 11 

Richards, A. L 184 

E07, Emma 165 

Euebel, Frederick 15 



Eussell, E. D 299 

Rutledge, J. 1 108 

Eyan, J. W 297 

Schnurr, F. A 306 

Schnurr, George 84 

Schnurr, "William 303 

Sims, T. F 232 

Springer, F. M 71 

Springer, G. F 230 

Stevens, Marv J 253 

Swanson, S. P 195 

Swanstrom, C. J 72 

Tennant, A. E 197 

Todd, John 61 

Turner, W. E 13 

Wagner, N. J 123 

Weiss, E. L 89 

Wildman, W. M 251 

WJlliams, E. H 288 

Williams, J. B 27 

Wonders, J. W 310 

Wonders, T. W 301 

Woodard, C. H 302 

Woodard, O. J 10 

Wright, A. E 267 

Wright, E. M 66 

Yant, O. G 127 



23 1932 






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