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Biographical review of Henry County, Iowa, containing biographical and genealogical sketches of many of the prominent citizens of to-day and also of the past .. online

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Online LibraryHobart Publishing Company (Chicago)Biographical review of Henry County, Iowa, containing biographical and genealogical sketches of many of the prominent citizens of to-day and also of the past .. → online text (page 5 of 85)
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copal church of Canaan township and his
life has been in harmony with his pro-
fessions. All who know him entertain
for him warm regard and he is today
one of the venerable and honorable resi-
dents of the county and one who for years
has been identified with its interests, his
aid and influence being a potent element
for good.


Artus B. Cockayne is the owner of one
hundred and sixty acres of land on sec-
tion II. Scott township, and in the work



of improvement and development here he
has shown thorough famiHarity with
modern metliods of farming, \\hile his
labors have been characterized by a prac-
tical spirit that produces results. He is
a native son of Des Moines county, Iowa,
born on the 15th of May, 1859, and he
was the twelfth in order of birth in a
familv of thirteen children, seven sons
and six daughters, who were born unto
Hiram and Elizabeth (Riggs) Cockayne.
His parents were natives of Marshall
county, Virginia, and the mother was a
daughter of John Riggs of the Old Do-
minion. Leaving the south they made
their way w-estward to Iowa, traveling
by team to a town on the Ohio ri^'er,
where they eml)arked on a steamer, pro-
ceeding down that stream and up the
Mississippi river to Burlington. They
then continued their journey to Flint
River township, Des Moines county,
which was then a pioneer district, in
which the work of development and im-
provement had scarcely been begun. Mr.
Cockayne cast in his lot with the frontier
settlers and entered from the government
five hundred acres of land, on which he
built a log house. This was previous to
1840 and few indeed were the settle-
ments that had been made at that time
in eastern Iowa. Of this claim there were
about seventy-five acres that could be cul-
tivated at the time of the purchase but
he at once began to further clear and
develop the farm and in course of time
placed many acres under the plow. He
also sold a portion of the land previous to
clearing it. His time and energies
throughout his remaining days were de-
voted to farm work there and he resided

upon the old homestead until his death,
which occurred August 18, 1869. His
wife continued upon the old homestead
for about sixteen years longer and then
went to Cass county, Iowa, to live with
her son, J. H. Cockayne, with whom she
resided for about twenty years. She then
l^ecame a member of the family of Artus
B. Cockayne, living with him for a short
time in Des Moines county, after which
she went to the home of her daughter,
Mrs. George Riffel in the same county
and there died in December, 1889, at an
advanced age.

Artus B. Cockayne lived with his
mother until twenty-six years of age and
acquired his education in the public
schools of Flint River township. When
not occupied with his text-books his at-
tention was devoted to the labors of the
farm and when he left home in 1885 he
began farming on his own account. He
first rented land in \\''ashington town-
ship, where he lived for sixteen years and
his savings during that period enabled
him, on the 19th of February, 1891, to
purchase one hundred and s/.>cty acres of
land on section 11, Scott township,
Henry county. He has sine 5 built a hay
barn, twenty by thirty-two feet, and has
put eighteen thousand tile on his place
and about one thousand had already been
laid so that his land is now splendidly
drained and its productiveness thereby
ofreatlv augmented. He carries on gen-
eral farming and raises about ten head
of shorthorn cattle each year, together
with ten or twelve horses and about forty
head of Poland China hogs, the sale of
his stock adding materially to his income.
On the 1st of January, 1885. Mr.



Cockayne was married to Miss Minnie
Schnittger, a native of Burlington, Iowa,
and a daughter of Frederick and Fred-
erica Schnittger, both of wdiom were na-
tives of Germanv. Unto Mr. and Mrs.
Cockayne were born two sons and a
daughter: Artus Walter, born February
21, 1886; Roily Herman, August 9,
1889; and Rosa Lily, December 5, 1895.
All are yet at home. The wife and
mother died March i, 1896, and on the
28th of December, 1897, Mr. Cockayne
was again married, his second union be-
ing with Miss Caroline Schnittger, wdio
was born in Burlington and is a sister
of his first wife. They are now pleas-
antly located upon the home farm in
Scott township and have many warm
friends in this community. Mr. Coc-
kayne is a Presbyterian in his religious
belief and votes with the Democratic
party, but has neither time nor inclina-
tion for public office, perferring to give
his attention to his business affairs.


Joseph L. Goe, wdio has been engaged
in business interests in Mount Pleasant
from an earl}- period in its development,
but is now living retired, was born in
Brownsville, Pennsylvania, in 1826, and
there spent his childhood and youth. His
father was a shoemaker. In early man-
hood the son left the Keystone state for
Ohio, settling at Seven Miles, where he
w^as married to Miss Cvnthia Samuels.

In 1855 Mr. Goe came to Mount Pleas-
ant and engaged in the dray and transfer
business. This place w-as then a small
town, and no railroads had been built
through this section, so Mr. Goe engaged
in hauling freight from the river. After
the building of the railroad he continued
in the transfer business, receiving a liberal
patronage as the years went by, and suc-
cessfully carrying- on this line of activity
until 1885. In the meantime he had also
established a livery barn, and in 1889
formed a partnership with his son under
the firm name of J. L. Goe & Son, but has
not been active in the management of this
enterprise, wdiich has been left largely to
the care of the junior partner, who has
developed one of the leading livery barns
of southeastern Iowa. Mr. Goe is now
the oldest livery man actively engaged in
the business in the state of Iowa, now be-
ing in his eighty-first year, although he
appears much younger.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Goe have been born
eight children, of whom five are yet liv-
ing : Louis C. ; Charles B. ; Mrs. Mary
Ogden, of Topeka. Kansas; Ola, living in
this city; and Mrs. Emma Strawn, of To-
peka, Kansas. The parents are members
of the Methodist Episcopal church, and
are well known in the city, which has been
their home for a half century, and where
they have gained many warm friends.
Mr. Goe is one of the oldest Odd Fellows
of this part of the state, having been an
exemplary member of the order for fifty
}'ears. He started upon his business ca-
reer empty-handed, but labor has proven
the foundation of his prosperity, and he
has worked his way upward from a hum-
ble financial position to one of affluence.




William Sherman Judy, treasurer of
Henry county, and a resident of Mount
Pleasant, was born in West Point town-
ship, Lee county, Iowa, July 3, 1865, his
parents being Henry and Elizabeth (Em-
mett) Judy. The father was born in
Montgomeiy county, Ohio, and removed
to Spring-held, Illinois, where he resided
until twenty-four years of age. In 1834
he came to Lee county, and located in
West Point township amid its pioneers.

Reared under the parental roof, Wil-
liam Sherman Judy acquired his prelimi-
nary education in the public schools and
afterward attended Denmark Academy,
the oldest chartered educational institution
in the state of Iowa. He assisted his fa-
ther through the periods of vacation and
remained upon the home farm until the
time of his marriage in 1896. As his fa-
ther advanced in years he relieved him
more and more of the care of the farm
until he had assumed its entire manage-
ment. On the 17th of June, 1896, was
celebrated his marriage to Miss Anna Bell,
of Burlington, Iowa, a daughter of John
Bell, who for many years liAcd near Sa-
lem, Heniy county.

For a year following his marriage Mr.
Judy engaged in merchandising at La-
Crew, Lee county, Iowa, conducting a
general store, and on selling out he went
to Salem, Henry county, where for a year
he was connected with the Salem Bank.
He also owned and superintended a farm a
mile south of town, and in the fall of
1898 he took up his abode upon the farm,
comprising two hundred and forty acres
of rich arable land. His attention was then

devoted to general agricultural pursuits
and stock-raising, and his fields were
placed under a high state of cultivation.
He also raised good grades of stock and
his business yielded him a fair profit.

Mr. Judy has always been interested in
the political questions and issues of the
day, and while in Lee county had become
an active worker in the ranks of the Repub-
lican party and was nominated for school
superintendent in 1895, but because of the
strong democratic majority in that county
was not elected, although he ran far ahead
of his ticket and was defeated by only nine-
ty-two votes. In 1903 he was nominated in
Henry county for the position of county
treasurer and was elected by a good ma-
jority. The new election law of incum-
bency will cover three years, and he is
discharging the duties of the office with
credit to himself and satisfaction to his
constituents, his administration being char-
acterized by a systematic, methodical and
faithful performance of every duty that
devolves upon him. He still owns his
farm, which is being carried on by a part-
ner, and he is interested in the breeding
of Percheron horses, having two registered
animals, also of Shropshire sheep and Po-
land China hogs, having a number of im-
ported sheep upon his place. In this re-
gard he is now coming to be known among
the leading breeders of fine sheep and hogs
in eastern Iowa.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Judy have been
born three sons, James M., Robert P. and
Emmett, aged respectvely seven, six and
four years. The parents are members of
the Congregational church, and they own a
fine home at No. 407 South :\lain street,
in Mount Pleasant. Fraternally Mr. Judy



is connected with the Modern Woodmen
of America. He is a typical Iowa citi-
ten, alert and enterprising, with a recogni-
tion of possibilities of this section of the
state and a desire for successful accom-
plishment in all matters of citizenship and
general progress.


Isaac T. Gibson, one of the most es-
teemed and honored residents of Henry
county, now^ living a retired life in Sa-
lem, was born in Greene county near Old-
town, Ohio, May ii. 1831, his parents
being Monttelian and Sarah (Embree)
Gibson. The father was born in Lou-
doun county, Virginia. In 1805 he re-
moved to Ohio, where he learned the mil-
ler's trade at Ellicott's Mills, acting as
managers of Embree's Alills on the Mi-
ami river for many years. He married Sa-
rah Embree, the daughter of his employer,
who removed from Virginia to East Ten-
nessee at a very early day and there
erected an iron furnace, which he con-
ducted in connection with his sons. Elihu
and Elijah, until his removal to Ohio. He
was also a surveyor and did much in that
direction and he compiled and printed a
phonetic spelling book, making the type
in his own iron plant. He possessed much
ability and left the impress of his indi-
viduality for good upon each community
with which he was associated for any
length of time. His two sons seem to
have inherited their father's energy and

ability. Elijah Embree entered politics
and canvassed the state of Tennessee in
connection ^vith Andrew Jackson, when
he was candidate for governor, Elijah
Embree being at the same time a candi-
date for congress. Elihu Embree was an
earnest opponent of slavery and joined
with other Friends in purchasing the type
and other equipment for the Emancipa-
tor, of which he became editor. This w^as
the first paper devoted to advocating the
freedom of the slaves and a copy of this
is in possession of Thomas J. Wilson, a
son-in-law of Elihu Embree and an own
cousin of Mr. Gibson. The first number
of the Emancipator, was published at
Jonesboro, Tennessee, dated the "fourth
month (April) 30, 1820." It was a splen-
didly edited sheet and its circulation
reached two thousand copies, having sub-
scribers in all parts of the United States.
Elihu Embree was one of the greatest
abolitionists of his time. In reply to one
who opposed emancipation he wrote: "In
answer to these insurmountable diffi-
culties it has been observed that as slav-
ery is a moral evil it ought to be removed
as speedily as possible and trust the con-
sequences of such a duty in the hands of
an unerring providence, who punished the
Egyptians for disobedience in a similar
case but has never suffered the obedient
in any age or nation to sustain any real
loss in consequence of their submission
to His commands." Elihu Embree urged
and stirred up the preachers to keep
abreast with the times and be more faith-
ful in their efforts to destroy slavery. An
other able and interesting local entitled
"Elihu Embree, Abolitionist," by E. E.
Hoes may be found in the early number



of 1893 Quarterly Review, of the Meth-
odist Episcopal church South, in Nash-
ville, Tennessee.

Sarah Embree, sister of Elihu Embree,
and mother of our subject, was born in
Tennessee, December 19, 1784, and died
at the advanced age of eighty-six years,
five months and twelve days. She pos-
sessed a full share of the family charac-
teristics and was a remarkable woman of
strong mentality, of great natural ability
and force of character. Her benevolent
spirit was shown in her unfailing kind-
ness to the poor and needy and to those
who needed sympathy and assistance and
the same qualities seem to have been in-
herited by her son, Isaac T. Gibson, whose
life has been largely devoted to philan-
thropy. After their marriage Mr. and
Mrs. Monttelian Gibson settled upon a
part of the Embree entry where their chil-
dren were born. Esther, the eldest, mar-
ried Benjamin Owen and after his death
Eleazer Bales, who was a prominent min-
ister of the Friends church, and died
about 1887. Mrs. Bales is also deceased.
Maria Gibson became the wife of Ben-
jamin AA'ildman, a farmer who died in
Clark county, Ohio, and she has also
passed away. Elijah is also deceased.
Tamar and Rachel were twins and mar-
ried George and Peter Hobson, brothers.
Both brothers are deceased, as is Rachel,
but Tamar makes her home with her
brother, Mr. Gibson. The two sisters
were married within a few months of
each other and they were the first fami-
lies in Salem, Iowa. Deborah Gibson be-
came the wife of Jesse Hadley and died a
year later. Hannah became the wife of
Caleb Easterling and had two children.

She is now deceased. After the death of
her first husband Tamar Gibson Hobson
became the wife of James Comer, who is
also deceased. She has had ten children :
Eliza Jane, deceased; Esther, Hannah
Ann and Sarah, who have also passed
away; Mary who is the wife of Stephen
Perkins, by whom she has three chil-
dren and makes her home in Fairfield,
Iowa ; George Harvey, who is living in
Albia. Iowa; Rachel, a resident of Sa-
lem, Iowa, who is the widow of George
Goff and has seven children; Ella Mar-
tha, the wife of Alfred Cook, of the state
of Washington, by whom she has two
children ; and Cassius, deceased. Mrs.
Comer is a remarkable old lady. She
was born January 8, 1820, and has there-
fore reached the eighty-sixth milestone
on life's journey. She possesses a beau-
tiful disposition and all her faculties, and
is yet able to sew and perform some other
household duties.

Isaac T. Gibson was reared to man-
hood in Ohio, receiving but limited edu-
cational privileges. He married Anna M.
Hiatt, of Salem, Iowa, who was born in
1835, and is a daughter of Allen Hiatt,
who is mentioned elsewhere in this work.
She acquired her education in Earlham
College at Richmond, Indiana, and at the
time of her marriage began housekeeping
in Salem. Mr. Gibson was at that time
a merchant of Salem, in which business
he continued for ten years, after which he
joined his father-in-law, Mr. Hiatt, in
the conduct of a nursery and also in
farming operations. For many years he
continued to carry on general agricultural
pursuits but is now living retired, main-
taining his home in Salem. He has been



a very prominent and active factor in
public life, his efforts gaining him more
than local prominence. He served on the
school board for several terms, was secre-
tary and a member of the village council
for seven years and also acted as its
clerk. ^Mlile he was the incumbent in
that office a new charter for the village
was obtained. For many years he was
notary public and he was also secretary
of the first county agricultural society
which held its fair in Salem. An earnest
Christian man he has ever done much
for the upbuilding of the church. He was
likewise a member of the Northwestern
Freedmen's Aid Commission, which was
organized in Chicago in 1864, and be-
came one of the board of managers which
was composed of eminent men from all
the Christian bodies of the northwest. He
continued a member of this board until it
was merged into the American Mission-
ary Association. This commission was
the channel through which the benevo-
lent people of the northwest sent their
contributions in aid of the suffering freed-
men of the south during the latter part
of the war and following its close. After
the war Mr. Gibson was sent to establish
schools among the colored people of the
southwest and was also appointed agent
of the American Missionary Association
and of the Freedmen's Bureau by Gen-
eral O. O. Howard. He was engaged in
Missouri for two years in organizing
schools and secured the introduction of
free schools for colored people. During
this time he was frequently threatened
with personal violence. He secured pub-
lic school buildings for the many colored
people whose parents paid heavy taxes

in St. Louis. At this time he was ap-
pointed by the state legislature a member
of the reform school board, of which he
was made treasurer and superintendent
of the completion of \A'hite's Institute, the
first reform school building in this state.
He was also United States Indian agent
of the Osage and other, tribes in the In-
dian Territory and during the trying
times in 1869 between the whites and the
Indians he succeeded in bringing about a
better condition of affairs and in winning
the respect and confidence of both parties.
He continued in the work until 1876 with
great success. He prevented the passing
of a treaty which by fraud the Osages
had been induced to make, selling eight
million acres of land which they owned
in the best part of southwestern Kansas
for eighteen cents per acre. He for-
warded through the assistant superin-
tendent all the information he could
gather to the government and General
Grant withdrew the treaty. He repre-
sented the Indians at the next congress in
Washington and aided in securing the
first passage of the bill for the sale of the
lands at one dollar and a quarter per acre
and placing the proceeds at interest for
the Osage Indians, thus making them a
wealthy tribe. At length resigning his
position as Indian agent he spent two
years in ^^'^ashington, D. C, as claim
agent and while there also acted as presi-
dent of the National Christian Associa-
tion for the District of Columbia. He was
likewise secretary of the National Arbi-
tration League, whose object it is to sub-
stitute arbitration for war between the
nations, the president of the league being
Governor Stanton, of Kansas. He was



also secretary of the national convention
held at Washington, of which Hon. Ed-
ward S. Tobey, of Boston, was president.
Mr. Gibson is a member of the Iowa
Friends Peace Society and after his re-
turn to Salem he never missed an annual
meeting" unless absent upon official busi-
ness until the ill health of his wife caused
him to remain at home. He has been
treasurer of. the missionary board of Iowa
yearly meeting and president of the
church evangelical committee. In 1867.
while the Friends were trying to sustain
a school the "Whittier College Associa-
tion'' was formed by him and other
Friends and the work carried forward to
successful completion. Mr. Gibson was
secretary and financial manager of the
board from its organization but has de-
clined all other positions for some years.

In early life Mr. Gibson, strongly op-
posing the cause of slavery, became a re-
publican upon the organization of the
party for the purpose of preventing the
further extension of slavery but in more
recent years has been a prohibitionist, be-
lie\'ing that the temperance question is
one of the most important today before
the people.

Following his return to Salem he also
carried on general agricultural pursuits
for many years, ~but in 1898 his wife's
health failed and since that time he has
been retired from active farming, now
renting his land, a part of which is now
within the city corporation limits. He
makes his home in Salem ( devoting his
entire time to the care of his wife. Mr.
Gibson was a candidate for governor in

1 89 1 on the prohibition ticket and in

1892 and 1893 was state chairman of the

Prohibition party, while in 1894 he was
prohibition candidate for congress. He is
an elder in the Friends church in Salem.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Gibson were born
seven children, of whom four died in in-
fancy. Allen H., the eldest living son,
was born in Salem in 1861 and married
Miss Ida Pratt. He is manager of a large
department store which has an e.xtensive
patronage from the civilized Indians on
the Osage Reservation and he speaks the
Indian language fluently. Unto him and
his wife has been born a daughter, Mary
Ella. Mary E. Gibson, born July 8,
1862, was a successful teacher of Henry
county, was also employed as a teacher by
the Osage agency and taught for one year
in the public schools of Washington. D. C.
She died in Salem March 8, 1892, at the
age of twenty-nine years and nine months
and was laid to rest in the Friends ceme-
tery, at Salem. She was a true and de-
voted Christian and though her eyesight
was almost entirely destroyed prior to
her death, she bore her affliction with
Christian fortitude. Realizing that her
end was near, she selected the hymns to
])e sung at her funeral, the funeral sermon
being delivered by the Rev. Davis, of the
Congregational church in the Friends
church. He selected as his text, "What
are those which are arrayed in white
robes and whence came they?" Thomas
Embree Gibson, a younger son, attended
Wesleyan College in Mount Pleasant and
is now a director and assistant cashier in
the First National Bank at the Osage
agency, now called Pauhuska. The de-
ceased are: Sarah, John M., Anna M..
and Nopawalla, who was born in the In-
dian country and was named in honor of



a chief noted for his efforts in bringing
about the civiHzation of his people and he
was a man of stanch character, greatly
beloved b}^ the Gibson family.

Although Mr. Gibson's educational ad-
vantages were extremely meager, by
reading, experience, observation, and re-
search he added greatly to his knowlege
and has today a mind which is a store-
house full of information. He has kept
in touch with the great onward move-
ments of the world for the betterment of
mankind, possesses a gentle, retiring na-
ture combined with a strength of char-
acter that enables him to meet with forti-
tude all discouragements and hardships
of life and to press forward "to the mark
of the prize of the high calling." He has
had a wide acquaintance among promi-
nent ment of the country and all esteem
and value him because of the splendid
work he has accomplished in behalf of the
right, the true and the good.


P. T. Twinting, deceased, was for about
twenty-five years a factor in business cir-
cles in Mount Pleasant, and public opinion
was undivided concerning his ability and
also his right to the high esteem which
was uniformly accorded him. He was born
in Xanten Rhenish, Prussia, December 14.
1825, and was the oldest son of well-to-do
parents. His education was acquired in
the land of his nativity, and he came to
America in 1848, when a young man of

twenty-three years, but after his father's
death he returned to Germany in order to
settle up the estate. In 1850 he came
again to the new world, making his way
to Cincinnati, where he accepted a clerk-

Online LibraryHobart Publishing Company (Chicago)Biographical review of Henry County, Iowa, containing biographical and genealogical sketches of many of the prominent citizens of to-day and also of the past .. → online text (page 5 of 85)