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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 66 of 85)
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gation were held in their home, while
later a little house of worship was erected
from hewed logs.

Following their marriage Mr. Teter
engaged in farming in Ohio for six years
and in 1856 removed to W^yandotte, Kan-
sas, making the journey by steamer on
the Ohio and Missouri rivers. There
were only three houses in Kansas City at
the time and the entire west was a great
uncultivated and unimproved region. He
was there during the exciting and hazard-
ous period preceding the Civil war. Six
months later he came with his wife and
two children to Henry county, Iowa,
making the journey by team to Hillsboro
and on to the home of a brother who lived
in Salem township. Mr. Teter soon began
the cultivation of rented land but after six
months he purchased forty acres of tim-
ber land on section 19, Salem township.
He there built a shanty of poles and began
to clear away the brush and trees. He
had only ten cents when he arrived in this
county but he possessed a stout heart and
willing hands and resolved to brave all of
the hardships and trials incident to fron-
tier life in order to establish a home in
this part of the state. His wife's father
died two years later and then hitching a



team to a wagon he drove back to Ohio
with his family. This was in the spring
of i860 and they were fifteen days upon
the way. They remained there for a
year, during which time Mr. Teter worked
at carpentering. In 1861 he drove again
across the country to Iowa and with his
family settled in Salem township. He was
afterward employed in coal mines in Van
Buren and Henry counties and thus
worked at different times for fourteen
years. On the expiration of that period
he bought one hundred and twenty acres
more land adjoining the first forty acres,
all of which was covered with brush. He
cleared all and later bought an additional
farm of thirty acres adjoining the origi-
nal tract on the south. He now has one
hundred and ninety-three acres under cul-
tivation and gathers therefrom good
crops. In 1883 he purchased twenty acres
of timber land in Van Buren county and
he now owns altogether two hundred and
one acres in all the fields being highly
cultivated, while in addition he raises
sheep, cattle and hogs.

In 1 88 1 Mr. Teter was called upon to
mourn the loss of his first wife who died
in February of that year. Their children
were: Silas, living in Salem township;
Dennis H., of Van Buren county, Iowa;
Emeline, the widow of William Robinson,
of Van Buren county; and George V.,
who died January 3, 1895, at the age of
twenty-six years. In November, 1882,
Mr. Teter was married to Elizabeth Bon-
trager, a native of Carroll county, Ohio,
and a daughter of John and ]\Iary (Rain-
isburger) Bontrager. Her death occurred
in September. 1888, and on the 3d of
June. 1893, Mr. Teter was married to

Miss Mary De^^'itt, who was born in
Kane county, Illinois, and is a daughter
of A. T. and Hester Ann ( Brown)
DeWitt. natives of Canada and New
York respectively. Mr. Teter belongs to
the Christian church, in which he has held
the office of deacon and his political sup-
port is given to the Republican party.
His persistency of purpose and unfalter-
ing diligence constitute the strong ele-
ments in his success and have made him
a leading farmer of Salem township,
where he has valuable interests as repre-
sented by a fine and well improved farm.


Joel Jones is the owner of a fine farm
in Salem township and that he is classed
with the substantial residents of his com-
munity is due to a life of unabating
energy, strong determination and unflag-
ging work. He has now reached the
eightieth milestone on life's journey and
his life record proves that prosperity and
an honorable name may be won simul-
taneously, for an upright life has gained
for him the respect and confidence of his
fellow men. He was born in Harrison
county, Ohio, on the 15th of June, 1826,
a son of Isaac and Mary (^^lilleson)
Jones, both of whom were natives of
Pennsylvania. His paternal grandparents.
William and Emma (Cause) Jones, were
born in the same state and the maternal
grandparents. James and Abigal (Hayes)
Milleson. were natives of Easton. Penn-



sylvania. The tide of emigration has
steadily flowed westward in this country
and the boundaries of the frontier have
thus been extended. Among the early
residents who left the Keystone state for
Ohio were the parents of our subject and
after residing for some time in that state
they started with wagon and horses for
Iowa, driving across the country at a
period before the building of railroads.
They crossed the Mississippi river at Fort
Madison and thence continued on their
way to Salem in Henry county, where
they spent the winter. Mr. Jones pur-
chased two hundred acres of land in
Salem township, of which one hundred
and sixty acres lay on section 15. Upon
this farm the family took up their abode
in the spring, Mr. Jones building a little
frame house of two rooms, to which he
added a third room the following year.
Forty acres of his land was covered with
timber and was situated on section 20,
Salem township. With characteristic
energy he began the development of his
farm and during the first season broke
forty acres of land, capably performing
the arduous task of turning the sod and
placing hitherto uncultivated prairie under
the plow. He afterward purchased three
hundred and sixty acres of land in Lee
county, Iowa, which he gave to his sons
who, with six yoke of oxen he owned,
broke that tract at the same time he was
breaking his home place. A stone mason
by trade, he did considerable work in that
line, letting his boys carry on the work of
the farms. He was a very industrious,
energetic man and he instilled lessons of
industry and enterprise into the minds of
his children, so that thev earlv came to a

realization of the value of earnest persist-
ent labor as a factor in winning success.
In the family were five sons and two
daughters : Eli, James, Jonathan and
Abigail, all of whom are now deceased;
Marv, who became the wife of Thomas
Fisher and has also passed away; Isaac,
who has been called from this life; and
Joel, who is the only surviving member of
the family. The mother died September 5,
1858, at the age of seventy-five years,
four months and two days and the father
passed away August 28, 1862, at the age
of seventy-nine years. They were worthy
pioneer residents of the county, contribut-
ing to the early substantial improvement
of this part of the state.

Joel Jones was a lad when his parents
came to Iowa and he continued his edu-
cation in the common schools and semi-
nary of Salem, Henry county. His mem-
ory goes back to the time when almost
this entire district was wild and unbroken
prairie. Along the streams there grew
some timber, but the entire countryside
was much as it was when it came from
the hand of nature. Only a few settle-
ments had been made within its borders,
showing that the white man was extend-
ing his domain into the "region which was
formerly the hunting ground of the red
race. With the family Mr. Jones shared
in the difficult experiences incident to
pioneer life when the comforts of an older
civilization were difficult to obtain be-
cause of the remoteness from cities of
any size. In his youth Mr. Jones was
trained to the work of the farm, aiding in
the arduous task of developing and culti-
vating new land and continuing to work
upon the farm until after his parents*



death, when, wishing to remain upon the
old homestead, he purchased the interest
of the other heirs in the property. He has
resided here continuously since and has
put all of the improvements upon the farm
to the value of about five thousand dollars.
In 1875 he built a house of seventeen
rooms with cellar underneath. He also
has a large barn, forty by fifty feet with
stone basement, which was built in 1864,
being one of the first good barns in this
vicinity. The place is as well improved
as anv in the township and indicates the
careful supervision and progressive spirit
of the owner. He has added twenty-one
acres to the original tract and also ten
acres of timber and he now owns alto-
gether two hundred and ten acres, all in
Salem township. In more recent years
he has abandoned the active w^ork of the
fields, which he has turned over to his son
Arthur, who lives just opposite his place
and who in connection with general farm-
ing is with his father feeding cattle
extensively each year.

On the 2 1 St of December, 1856. Mr.
Jones was married to Miss Caroline
Rhodes, who was born in Warren county,
Ohio, October 28, 1830, a daughter of
John W. and Sarah (Thompson)
Rhodes, the former a native of Virginia
and the latter of Maine. Her paternal
grandparents were John and Sarah
(Jacob) Rhodes and her maternal grand-
parents were Samuel and Sarah (Har-
rington) Thompson. Her great-grand-
father, William Rhodes, was a soldier of
the Revolutionary war, who gave his life
for the cause of liberty. Mrs. Jones was
educated in the schools of Ohio and in the
high school of Mount Pleasant, Iowa, and

also Howe's Academy in that city. Unto
our subject and his wife have been born
four children : Alvin, who was born Jan-
uary 21, 1858, and is living in Salem
township, married Mena Bailey, who
died leaving four children, Hazel, Trell,
Cophine and Barrel J. ; Arthur, who was
born October 27, 1859, and is operating
the old home place, married Clara Taylor,
have five children. Gilbert, Roscoe,
Anthony, Bessie and Bertha; Ida, who
was born April 18, 1861, and is the wife
of Amos Binford, a rancher of Colorado,
living in Denver, has two children. Max
and Berda; and Jessie, who was born
March 10, 1872, and is at home.

In his political views Joel Jones is a
stalwart republican and for many years
has served as township trustee, his long
continuance in the office being proof of
the capability of his service and the trust
reposed in him by his fellow townsmen.
Almost his entire life has been spent upon
the farm which is now his home. From
this place he has watched the great
changes that have wrought a marked
transformation in the county, converting
it from a frontier district into a center of
advanced civilization with all of the ele-
ments of modern progress and improve-


Charles Theodore Johnson, interested
in general farming and stock-raising in
Scott township, is a native of Galesburg,
Illinois, born on the 7th of December.
1869. His father. J. W. Johnson, was



born in Sweden and coming to America
in early life was married in Galesburg,
Illinois, to Miss Clara Nelson, also a
native of Sweden. He was employed as a
deliveryman there until 1875, when he
removed to Henry county, Iowa, and pur-
chased eighty acres of land on section 30,
Scott township. To that place he removed
in the following spring, finding it
improved with an old frame one-story
house and a shed stable. Since then many
modern improvements and equipments
have been added. A frame barn, thirty-
six by thirty-four feet, has been built for
the shelter of horses and cattle. There is
a corn crib, eight by thirty-two feet,
and about four hundred rods of tiling
have been laid. The house is a two-story
structure of six rooms and the farm is
also supplied with good modern machin-
ery to facilitate the work of the fields.
J. A\'. Johnson owes his success entirely
to his own efforts, for when he started out
in life on his own account his capital was
limited and he had to depend entirely
upon his own labors for all that he pos-
sessed or enjoyed. He worked energeti-
cally and diligently, however, and as the
years passed by became the owner of a
good farm property, while his labors were
crowned with a comfortable competence
resulting from his capable management
and unremitting diligence. His death
occurred February 4, 1892, and he is still
survived by his wife, who yet resides upon
the old homestead. In their family were
four children: Emma, Charles T. and
Ella, all yet at home; and Ida, who was
the second daughter and died at the age
of twenty-five years, after having become
the wife of Andrew Seaburg.

Charles Theodore Johnson was reared
upon the old family homestead, to which
he removed with his parents when about
five years of age. He was a student in
the public schools, mastering the branches
of learning that fitted him for the dis-
charge of the practical business duties.
Through the periods of vacation he was
trained in the work of the fields and since
his father's death he has conducted the
home farm, being the only son. He now
carries on general agricultural pursuits
and the well tilled fields give promise of
golden harvests. He raises horses, cattle
and hogs and everything about his place
is kept in excellent condition, showing
that his methods are practical as well as

On the 25th of February, 1902, Mr.
Johnson was married to Miss Jennie Ball,
a native of this county, and a daughter of
William and Dorcas (Patterson) Ball.
Both ]\Ir. and Mrs. Johnson have long
been residents of this community and
have gained manv friends bv reason of
the display of those sterling traits of
character which in every land and clime
command respect and regard. He holds
membership in the Swedish Lutheran
church and politically is a republican.


George Irving Hamilton, interested in
general farming in Wayne township, was
born in Hancock county. Illinois, on the
31st of December, 1868. His paternal



grandfather, Andrew Hamilton, was a
native of Ohio, and on arriving at years
of maturity he wedded Margaret A.
Hewitt, who vras born on the Atlantic
ocean when her parents were coming
from Ireland to the new world. Their
son, Robert M. Hamilton, father of our
subject, is a native of Preble county,
Ohio, but prior to his marriage removed
to Illinois and in Hancock county, that
state, was joined in wedlock to Miss
Maria Whitaker, who was born in that
county and is a daughter of Benjamin F.
and Elizabeth (Pettibone) Whitaker,
both of whom were natives of New Jer-
sey. The young couple began their do-
mestic life upon a farm in Hancock
county, Illinois, where they remained for
three years and then removed to McDon-
ough county, that state, where they
also spent three years. On the ex-
piration of that period they took up
their abode in Missouri, where they
resided for iiA-e years, and then came
to Iowa, settling in Louisa county. Up
to this time ]\Ir. Hamilton had always
carried on general agricultural pursuits,
and he continued to farm in Iowa, becom-
ing one of the enterprising agriculturists
of Louisa county, where he resided con-
tinuously until 1900, when he came to
Henry county. He is now living a re-
tired life in Winfield, enjoying a well
earned rest after many years of close
connection with agricultural interests,
during which time his untiring industry
and the careful husbanding of his re-
sources brought to him a very gratify-
ing competence. While living in Illinois
he put aside all business and personal
considerations in order to respond to his

country's call for aid in the preservation
of the Union. On the loth of August,
1862, he was enrolled among the boys
in blue of Company D, Seventy-eighth
Illinois Infantry, with which command he
served until June, 1865, taking part in
a number of important engagements, for
that was one of the regiments which did
active and efficient field service.

George I. Hamilton, whose name in-
troduces this record, acquired his educa-
tion largely in the public schools of Mis-
souri and Iowa, and after completing his
education continued to make his home
with his parents, although he worked by
the month as a farm hand for others in
the neighborhood, being thus employed
for about eight years. On the 14th of
October, 1903, he chose a companion and
helpmate for life's journey, being married
on that date to Miss Elizabeth Edna Rus-
sell, who was born in Wayne township,
on the farm on which she now lives. She
was a student in the common schools and
afterward attended Howe's Business Acad-
emy, in Mount Pleasant. She comes of
Irish lineage. Her paternal great-grand-
father was Thomas Russell, who was
born in county Tipperary, Ireland, and
who married Sarah Roberts. The grand-
father, Caleb Russell, was born in Prince
William county, Virginia, and his wife,
who bore the maiden name of Harriet A.
Fairfax, was also a native of Prince Wil-
liam county. Their son, Calel) Russell,
father of Mrs. Hamilton, was born in
the same county, and married Piiebe Eliz-
abeth Fenton, a native of Frederick
county. Virginia. She was a daughter of
John and Mary M. (Steer) Fenton, the
former born in Frederick county, Vir-



ginia. and the latter in Loudoun county.
John Fenton was a son of Benjamin Fen-
ton, who was a native of Frederick
county, Virginia, where he spent his en-
tire Hfe. He wedded Ann Jackson, of the
same county, a daughter of Josiah and
Ruth (Steer) Jackson.

Since his marriage Mr. Hamihon has
engaged in farming on his own account
and now farms ninety acres in Wayne
township. His entire Hfe has been de-
voted to general farming and his prac-
tical experience in the days of his boy-
hood and youth well qualified him to take
charge of farming interests on his own
account since attaining his majority. He
exercises his right of franchise in support
of the men pledged to uphold the prin-
ciples of the Republican party and his re-
ligious faith is indicated b}^ his member-
ship in the Presbyterian church.


William Moyle, giving his time and at-
tention to general agricultural pursuits
and to the raising and feeding of horses
and cattle, was born in New York city on
the 27th of August, 1843. His paternal
grandparents were William and Mary
(Jones) Moyle, both natives of Ireland.
They made their home in County Antrim,
where their son, William Moyle, father of
our subject, was born and reared. Having
arrived at years of maturity he wedded
Mary Fagen, a native of County Cavin,
Ireland, and a daughter of James Fagan.

Crossing the Atlantic to the United States
the father of our subject settled in Canada,
where he followed the baker's trade, which
he had previously learned in his native
land. He spent two years in the Do-
minion and afterward removed to New
York city. It was while living there that
he was married. He continued to work at
the baker's trade in the eastern metropolis
in the employ of others for a time and
then engaged in business for himself, con-
ducting his establishment for fifteen years,
at the end of which time he sold out, hav-
ing determined to establish his home in
the middle west. On the 9th of Novem-
ber, 1855, he arrived in Salem township,
Henry county. Iowa, and invested his cap-
ital in a farm of one hundred and twenty
acres on section 28. Upon the place was a
little log cabin containing but two rooms
and in this the family lived for two years,
when, having prospered in his work in
the west. Mr. Moyle erected a two-story
residence of eight rooms. The building
was built of brick and into this he moved,
making his home there in comfort up to
the time of his demise, which occurred on
the 14th of March, 1880. His wife has also
passed away. In their family were the
following named : Jane, who died in in-
fancy; Robert, who died while serving as
a soldier of the Civil war; Mary Ann,
who died in infancy ; Margaret, the wife
of John Eyer, of Hillsboro, Iowa ; Wil-
liam, of this review ; and Eliza, Avho died
in infancy.

AA^illiam Moyle, whose name introduces
this record, was the fifth in order of birth
in a family of six children. He began
his education in the public schools of New
York city, where he remained until twelve



years of age, when he came with his par-
ents to Iowa. He afterward spent one term
in 1 86 1 as a student in Iowa Wesleyan
University at Mount Pleasant. He aided
in farm work, assisting his father in the
cultivation of the fields and in the develop-
ment of the home farm until thirty-three
years of age. He was then married on the
25th of January, 1877, to Miss Sophronia
Barnes, who was born in the city of Hart-
ford, Connecticut, a daughter of Noah
and Rosanna (Toothacher) Barnes, an-
tives of Maine. Unto Mr. and Mrs.
Moyle have been born eight children :
Robert, who was born December 18, 1878,
and died September 20, 1895; Charles,
born June 7, 1880; William B., born
March 3, 1882; Ada Rosanna, who was
born August 22, 1883, and died August
15, 1884; Sylvia, who was born Novem-
ber 4, 1884; Noah Barnes, August i,
1886; Frank, May 17, 1890; and Roy,
who was born May 5, 1893, and died on
the 15th of the same month. Prior to his
marriage Mr. Moyle had purchased thir-
ty-six acres of partially improved land sit-
uated on the northwest quarter of the
southwest quarter of section 28, Salem
township. This formed the nucleus of his
present valuable farm. He added to the
property until he owned one hundred and
fifty-five acres before his marriage. He
built thereon a house of four rooms and
in that little dwelling the wedding cere-
mony was performed. Mr. and Mrs.
Moyle have since resided upon this place
and he has further extended the bounda-
ries of his farm until it now comprises
three hundred acres, while his wife owns
two hundred two and a half acres in the
same localitv. The soil is rich and pro-

ductive and the well tilled fields bring
forth golden harvests. He raises various
cereals and also gives considerable atten-
tion to the raising of draft horses and
white face cattle. He also raises about
one hundred and twenty-five head of
Poland China hogs each year and feeds
from one to two carloads of cattle annu-
ally. He has a good barn forty-eight by
fifty-four feet, for his hay and horses and
a second barn, twenty-four by thirty feet.
There are also good cattle sheds attached
to the barns, which cover ninety-six feet
on one barn and a length of eighty feet on
another. Further improvements include
a Perkins windmill and he uses modern
inachinery for the plowing, planting and
harvesting. Everything about his place is
thoroughly modern and he has added to
his residence until now he has a commodi-
ous home containing eleven rooms with a
cellar underneath. In December, 1902, he
installed a furnace, so that the place is
heated with hot air and he has supplied his
home with modern accessories, making it
one of the most desirable and comfortable
residence properties in this part of the
county. Mr. Moyle is now a substantial
and prosperous farmer owing to his own
well directed labors and enterprise, f<^r he
had no financial assistance in his youth
and made his start with the money saved
from his earnings as a farm hand.


Jesse Downing Cooper, residing upon
what is known as the old Cooper home-
stead in Wayne township, Henry county,



devotes his attention to general farming
and stock-raising, being particularly well
known in the latter direction. He was
born in Highland county, Ohio. March
29, 1853, ^"<^ represents old families of
the east. His paternal grandfather, John
Cooper, married a Miss Yarnell and their
son, Jesse Cooper, father of our subject,
was born in Lancaster county, Pennsyl-
vania. During his minority, however, he
accompanied his parents to Ohio, where
the family home was established at a very
earl}^ day in the development of that
state. When he had reached adult age he
was married to ]\Iiss Mary Eleanor Rees,
who was born in Berkeley county, Vir-
ginia, and was a daughter of Thomas
Rees. Her parents were likewise pioneer
residents of Ohio and Mr. and Mrs. Jesse
Cooper began their domestic life in the
Buckeye state, w^here they remained until
the fall of 1868, when they came to Iowa,
settling on a farm of sixty-five acres
which was purchased from Bennett Wal-
ters. They also bought fifteen acres addi-
tional. This was the only farm that had
a patent fence on it. There was a frame
residence of five rooms, which was after-
ward moved back and an addition placed
in front, so that it was transformed into
a commodious and attractive modern
home. For a long period the father car- '
ried on general agricultural pursuits with
good success, but he and his wife spent
their last days in the home of their son

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 66 of 85)