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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 77 of 85)
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property for a year. Later, with a partner,
he rented a farm of two hundred and
ninety acres,, which he conducted for
three years, after which he operated land
near his mother's farm, making his home
with her for a year, at the end of which
period he cultivated a rented farm of one
hundred and twenty acres for about
twelve months.

On the 15th of June, 1898, Mr. Peter-
son was united in marriage to Miss Alma
Carlson, who was born in Wayne to\\n-
ship, Henry county, and is a daughter of
John and Clara (Morgan) Carlson, both
of whom were natives of Sweden. Mrs.
Peterson was educated in the district
schools and was trained to the labors of
the household, so that she was well quali-
fied to take charge of a home of her own
at the- time of her marriage. This union
has been blessed with one son, John Leslie
Reynolds, born November 11, 1903.

After his marriage Mr. Peterson con-
tinued to operate a rented farm for two
years in AVayne township, after which he
spent a similar period upon his father-in-
law's farm in the same township. His
industry and economy having brought to
him some capital he then made invest-
ment in one hundred acres of land in the
southwest quarter of section 19. This

was improved to some extent, but he has
carried forward the work of development
and improvement until he now has a
splendid farm on which he has placed
about fourteen thousand tile, so that the
land is well drained and has thereby
become very productive. He built a barn
fourteen by forty-four feet and also a
shed for his hogs thirty-six by fourteen
feet. He makes a specialty of raising
Poland China hogs, keeping on hand
about sixty head, and he also raises a few
head of Hereford cattle each year. The
fields are well cultivated, producing rich
crops annually and he is prospering in his
work as the years go by. In politics he is
a republican and he and his wife are mem-
bers of the Swedish Lutheran church,
while in the community where they reside
they have a large circle of warm friends.


August Tyrson, who is engaged in gen-
eral farming in Wayne township, was
born in Sweden — a country which has
furnished a large number of valued citi-
zens to Henry county, for the sons of that
land are usually men of unfaltering indus-
try and thorough reliability, who while
advancing individual interests also ikm -
form the service of loyal and faithful
citizenship. Mr. Tyrson is certainly a
worthy representati\-e of this class. His
birth occurred March 24, 1833. his par-
ents being Peter and Carrie M. (Edland)
Tvrson. He never had the opportunity of



attending school, but learned to read at
home and has obtained his knowledge
through observation and reading. In the
school of experience, too, he has learned
many valuable lessons and is a practical
business man. In his early life 1ie learned
the tailor's trade, which he followed in
Sweden until twenty-two years of age,
after which he devoted three years' time
to farm labor in his native country.
Believing that he would have better busi-
ness opportunities in the. new world, how-
ever, he sailed for the United States and
in 1869 arriA'cd in Burlington, Iowa, after
which he devoted one year to farm labor.
He then went to Biggsville, Henderson
county, Illinois, where he worked on a
farm until the winter of 1879. At that
time he came to Swedesburg, Iowa, and
was again employed at farm labor until
1 88 1, when with the capital he had saved
from his earnings he invested in fortv
acres of land on the northwest quarter of
section 22, Wayne township. This had
been placed under cultivation at the time
and he has since continued the work of
improvement and development. He has
remodeled the house and built an addi-
tion thereto twenty by thirty feet. He
has likewise added to the place the neces-
sary buildings for the shelter of grain
and stock and there are now good barns
and sheds, while the land is well tiled, so
that the fields have become very arable.
He carries on general farming, having
good crops of corn and other cereals and
he raises about twenty head of hogs each

In April, 1881, :\Ir. Tyrson was united
in marriage to Miss Ellen Anderson, who
was born in Sweden and attended school

in that country. They became the par-
ents of four children : Elmer, who was
born November 4. 1882 : Melvin, who was
born July i, 1884: Tollie, who was
adopted by Charles Burke, of Swedes-
burg: and Ada, born September 19, 1888.
The wife and mother died on the 31st of
January, 1890, and was laid to rest in the
Swedesburg cemetery. Air. Tyrson and
his son Elmer are now keeping house
together, while Melvin is attending the
business college at Dixon, Illinois. Mr.
Tyrson has now passed the Psalmist's
allotted span of three score years and ten.
He has led a busy life characterized by
unfaltering industry and perseverance and
in those qualities are found the source of
his success. He made no mistake in seek-
ing a home in the new world, having
never had occasion to regret his decision
in this matter, for here he has found good
business opportunities, which he has im-
proved and thus won a comfortable com-
petence. \Miile never an aspirant for
public office, he always gives stalwart sup-
port to the Republican party and his reli-
gious belief is manifested by his member-
ship in the Lutheran church.


Joseph Brown, a son of Isaac and Re-
becca (Besen) Brown, ^.vas born in Fay-
ette county, Pennsylvania, on the i8th
of May, 1807, and after many years' resi-
dence in Henry county reparted this life
honored and respected by all who knew



him because of an upright, straightforward
career. In early Hfe he became a resident
of Harrison county, Ohio, and afterward
took up his abode in Jefferson county,
Ohio. In 1842 he arrived in Iowa, locat-
ing near Lowell, where he built a home
aid mill, which he operated for many
years, being thus closely associated with
industrial interests. He had previously
learned the trade of cabinet-making, and
while residing in Jefferson county, Ohio,
had engaged in the manufacture of wool-
en goods, so that at different times he has
been connected with varied industrial in-
terests. He continued as a woolen manu-
facturer for eight years, and following his
removal to Iowa he engaged in the opera-
tion of a feed mill and also in the conduct
of a sawmill. At a later day he built a
larger grist mill across the river, now
owned by Mr. Lewis. He ga\'e strict at-
tention to his business affairs, neglecting
no detail and his enterprising efforts re-
sulted in the acquirement of success. As
he prospered he inve-ted in land and be-
came the owner of two hundred and forty
acres, which he divided between his heirs
and widow\

It was in 1837 that Air. Brown was
united in marriage to Miss Jane Alexan-
der, who was born in Maiyland in 1808
and who died in Ohio in October, 1840.
For his second wife he chose Mary Smith,
whom he wedded on the loth of August,
1843. She was born in North Carolina
in 1808 and was called to her final rest
in January, i860, leaving one daughter,
Elizabeth, who is now the wife of John
Jackman. For his third wife our subject
chose Hannah Brown, who was born in
Jefferson county, Ohio, October 20, 1825,

a daughter of Joel and Leah (Hester)
Brown. This wedding was celebrated on
the 7th of April, 1862, and was blessed
with two children : Justus, born July 27,
1864, ^nd Amelia, who was born May
14, 1869, and is the wnit of William Mor-
row-, a merchant of Lowell.

Mr. Brown was verv^ prominent and in-
fluential in community affairs. He held
all of the school offices and in i860 was
elected county supervisor for Baltimore
township, to which position he was re-
elected in 1 86 1, serving in all for three
years. The name of AlcCarverstown was
originally given to the village of Lowell,
but Mr. Brown proposed changing the
name to Lowell because of the superior
water privileges here found, and this was
done in the fall of 1842. He was led to
the choice of Lowell as a place of residence
because of its facilities for the conduct of
manufacturing plants supplied by its water
power. JMr. Brown had been reared in
the faith of the Society of Friends, or
Quakers, but left that organization because
of trouble which arose among the sect.
He then became identified with the Pres-
byterian church in 1838, and after estab-
lishing his home in Lowell joined the
Methodist Episcopal church, in which he
held various offices. His life was ever
upright and honorable and in all his liusi-
ness dealings he was straightforward and
reliable. His political allegiance was given
to the democracy and he was very deeply
interested in his party and its success.
He took a ver\- helpful and active part in
promoting public progress and improve-
ment in this county in an early day, and
indeed continued a valued factor in public
life up to the time of his demise.



His son, Justus Brown, lives with his
mother and is superintending the farming
interests. The home farm, which is now
owned by Mrs. Joseph Brown, comprises
sixty acres and :\Ir. IMorrow owns twenty
acres that were taken from the original
tract. No histor}- of this section of the
state would be complete without mention
of the Brown family, for from early pio-
neer times its representatives have been
prominent in tlie work of development
and upbuilding here.


A^^illiam Henry Taylor, for many years
a well known resident of Mount Pleasant,
was born in Providence, Rhode Island,
September lo, 1816, a son of Horace
and Hannah (Ballou) Taylor. The
father was a shoemaker by trade, and had
a contract for making army shoes during
the war of 1812. In the year 1818 he
removed to Lewis county. New York,
where he secured government land, and
in addition to shoemaking he carried on
general farming. His wife was the
daughter of Rev. Horace Ballou, one of
the founders of Universalism in this coun-
try. Horace Taylor and his family re-
mained residents of Lewis county for
about ten years, their home being near the
west shore of Lake Champlain, and it was
there that the boyhood days of William
Henry Taylor were passed, amid the
trials, privations and hardships incident to
pioneer life. He was one of a family of

nine children, and in 1828, the parents,
with their sons and daughters, removed
from the Empire state to Middlebury,
Vermont, where the children found em-
plovment in the factories of that city. The
father continued to make his home there
until called to his final rest.

In the schools of ]\Iiddlebury ^^'illiam
H. Taylor completed his education, and
later was apprenticed to a harness-maker,
with whom he remained for five years,
beginning in 1829. During that period
he received only his board and clothing in
remuneration for his sendees. At the age
of twenty years he emigrated with a
brother and others to \\^hitehall, being
three weeks in making the journey on a
canal boat. He spent a few weeks in Buf-
falo, New York, and a short time in Cleve-
land, Ohio, after which he went to Athens,
Ohio, where he remained for a year. La-
ter he located in Marietta, Ohio, and after
a vear or two spent in the service of others
he engaged in business on his own ac-
count and built up a good trade. He con-
tinued at that point until 1856, and was
a first-class workman. He became so
favorably known as an expert judge of
leather that he was placed on the commit-
tee on leather at the state fair.

In the year 1856, however, Mr. Taylor
left Ohio and came with his family to
]\Iount Pleasant, Iowa, where he resumed
business in the same line. Here he met
with excellent success, continuing in that
department of labor for a number of
years, when he closed out his business and
retired to a fine fruit farm of thirty acres
south of the town, which he had previ-
ously purchased. As a harness and sad-
dlery merchant he had become a leading



factor in commercial circles in Mount
Pleasant, and his business grew to ex-
tensive and profitable proportions, so that
he was enabled to spend the evening of life
in retirement from commercial pursuits.
Indolence and idleness, however, were ut-
terly foreign to his nature, and he occu-
pied his time with superintending his fruit
farm. He w'as always a lover of fine
fruit, deeply interested in the study of
horticulture and in its practical depart-
ment, and on his farm he gave special at-
tention to small fruits, being particularly
interested in the culture of strawberries.
He was very successful in this, and propa-
gated a number of new varieties, one of
which he named the Frances, in honor of
his little granddaughter. He was a man
of unusual vigor and energy, for the years
rested lightly upon him, and although
quite aged he attended strictly to business
until within a few months of his death.

In early manhood Mr. Taylor was mar-
ried to Miss Susan H. Talbott, a daugh-
ter of William and Jemima J. (Broome)
Talbott. the wedding being celebrated Oc-
tober 28, 1838, at ^larietta. Ohio, where
Mrs. Taylor was born, reared and edu-
cated, making her home there until her
marriage. Her father was a native of
Dighton, Massachusetts, was a representa-
tive of an old Puritan family, and always
displayed the strong principles and honor-
able conduct so characteristic of that peo-
ple. He made the journey westward from
Massachusetts to Marietta, Ohio, on
horseback, for the time w^as long prior to
the era of railroad transportation. He
married Mrs. Jemima J. Smith (nee
Broome) , who was born in Virginia, but
spent her later life in Marietta. Unto Mr.

and Mrs. Taylor were born eight children.
Sarah E., the eldest, is now the wife of
Dr. T. L. Andrews, of Mount Pleasant.
Benjamin Franklin was a member of the
Twenty-fifth Iowa Volunteer Infantry,
and died at St. Louis, ^lissouri, from dis-
ease contracted during the siege of Vicks-
burg. William H. was for many years
postmaster and business man at Garden
Plains, Kansas, which town was laid out
by our subject, who bought the first land
there. Mary S. is deceased. Anna is the
wife of Clinton M. Shultz, now of Chi-
cago. Laura J. is the widow of William
Van Benthuysen, formerly managing edi-
tor of the Chicago TribiDic and the Xew
York JVorld. Nellie S. is the deceased
wife of Nelson Culver, of Evanston, Illi-
nois. Ralston is also deceased.

Mr. Taylor died August 31, 1896, and
Mrs. Taylor passed away December 21,
1 89 1, the funeral services of the former
being conducted by the Rev. W. R. Cole
and Rev. O. ^I. Rogers, and of the latter
by the Rev. O. yi. Rogers. Both enjoyed
the high regard and sincere respect of
many warm friends. ]\Ir. Taylor was a
man of strict integrity, inflexible in his
adherence of the right, and yet of much
charity for the failings of others. He was
straightforward in all of his dealings, was
an intelligent man, keeping in touch with
modern thought. He took great interest
in political and religious questions, be-
lieving it to be the duty as well as' the
privilege of every citizen to support the
movements and measures which he be-
lieved to be for the general welfare. In
his family he was a kind father and de-
voted husband, and his life is in many re-
spects exemplary, so that his name is Hon-



ored and liis memory re\-ered by those
who knew him.


Edward C. Hinkle. a member of the
firm of Hinkle & Stinson, owners and
editors of the Winfield Beacon and also
a representative of one of the pioneer
famihes of eastern Iowa, was born in
Calhoun county, Michigan, December 31,
1841. His father, Charles Hinkle, was
a native of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania,
born in 1800, and after arriving at years
of maturity he wedded Luc}- Calander. a
native of the state of New York. She
died when their son Edward was but
eighteen months of age, and the father
afterward married Lovina Chase, who
was also born in New York. W^ith his
family he made his way westward to
IVIichigan, where he lived for a number of
years, and in March, 1854, he went to
Winfield. Henry county, Iowa, and soon
afterward purchased a farm in Scott
township, two miles east of Winfield.
His remaining days were devoted to agri-
cultural interests in this part of the state
and he died upon the old farm home-
stead in 1880. His widow subsequently
removed to Winfield and made her home
with Edward C. Hinkle up to the time
of her death in 1888.

Edward C. Hinkle began his education
in the schools of ^lichigan and when a
youth of thirteen years accompanied his
parents to Iowa, where he continued his

studies in the public schools. He lived
upon the home farm and assisted in its
cultivation and improvement until 1879,
when he came to ^^''infield and entered the
printing office of the \\^infield Beacon.
remaining there for a year, the paper be-
ing conducted by J. J. Hardin and his
wife. In 1880 Mr. Hinkle purchased the
outfit arid continued the publication of the
Beacon until 1888, when he admitted J.
R. Stinson to an equal partnership under
the firm style of Hinkle & Stinson. This
relation has since been maintained with
mutual pleasure and profit. He started
business with a hand press, but has im-
proved the plant from time to time, and
in 1897 he put in a two and a half horse
power steam engine and one of the best
cylinder presses in the county, also a
folder. He likewise has a large jub
press and paper cutter and in fact has a
well equipped newspaper and job office,
and is doing a good business in both de-
partments. The Beacon is a bright,
newsy sheet and has a good circulation
which renders it an excellent advertising
medium and its patronage in this direc-
tion is also extensive and profitable.

On the 19th of June, 1884, ]\Ir. Hin-
kle was united in marriage to Miss
Frances Wise, who was born in Winona,
Illinois, and is a daughter of Morgan and
Jane ( Hoge) Wise, both of whom are
natives of Pennsylvania. The parents
came to \\^infield in 1879, and the father
was engaged in the draying business un-
til 1895, when he sold out, and having
become the possessor of a comfortable
competence he is now living retired from
further business cares. He owns four
town lots which are planted to grapes



and other fruit and he raises more grapes
than any other man in this section.

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Hinkle have heen
born three children : Ethel, born June
29, 1886; Pearl, October 11, 1888; and
Charles, January 9, 1893. All are at
home. Mr. Hinkle owns his residence as
well as his printing office and the home
is noted for its gracious and warm-
hearted hospitality. Mr. Hinkle belongs
to the Xew church and his wife is a
member of the Presbyterian church. He
is independent in politics, supporting men
and measures ra;ther than party. Fra-
ternally he is connected with the Inde-
pendent Order of Odd Fellows, in which
he has served as secretary for many
years. He is also commander of the
Knights of the Maccabees and is adjutant
in Hobart Post, Grand Army of the Re-
public, of which he is a charter member.
He is entitled to membership in this or-
ganization from the fact that he enlisted
in November, 1864, as a member of Com-
pany C, Twelfth Iowa Infantry, and
served until after the close of the war,
being honorably discharged in Decem-
ber, 1866. He was in the department of
the gulf, served in the battles of [Mo-
bile, Spanish Fort and numerous skir-
mishes and engagements in that part of
the country. He proved his loyalty and
bravery under fire and ever faithfully per-
formed the duties of the soldier, so that
he returned home with a creditable mili-
tary record. Fie has an intimate knowl-
edge of pioneer experiences and condi-
tions in Henry county, ^^llen the family
removed to Winfield the town contained
but one house and that a very small one.
There was not a buggy nor spring wagon

m Scott township. He drove cattle to
break the prairie on what is now Main
street in Winfield, driving across a tract
for a half mile and using from four to
five yoke of oxen to the breaking plow.
This was indeed a rural district with few
of the evidences and improvements
known to the older civilization of the
east. Deer were frecjuently seen in large
herds and venison was no unusual meat
upon the family board. \\'olves and other
wild beasts were frequently seen and the
county was largely as it came from the
hand of nature, the work of improvement
and development being scarcely begun.
The Hinkle family have always borne
their full share in the work of public
progress and improvement and ]\Ir. Hin-
kle has done much to stimulate agricul-
tural development, especially in the ex-
ercise of his official prerogatives as secre-
tary of the Eastern Iowa District Fair,
which holds its meetings at Winfield. He
acted as secretary from 1895 until 1905.
As a private citizen and through the col-
umns of his paper he champions many
measures for the g'eneral good.


Joseph Short, whose home farm in
Baltimore township comprises two hun-
dred and twenty-four acres and whose
landed possessions aggregate six hundred
and thirty-eight acres, making him one of
the substantial citizens of Henry county,
was born on the 19th day of November.



185 1, in the township where he stih
makes his home, his parents being Alex-
ander and Mary (Arnold) Short, the for-
mer a native of Ohio and the latter of
Rhode Island. The father removed from
the Buckeye state to Henry county with
team and wagon and took up his abode in
Baltimore township. In connection with
a brother he purchased a farm of two hun-
dred and twelve acres on section 18. This
was largely covered with timber, few im-
provements as yet having been made, but
he began to clear away the trees, plow
the land and improve the property. In
the course of time he added thirty acres
to the place and he also invested in sev-
eral others farms in different parts of the
county, becoming one of the extensive
landowners. It was after his arrival in
Iowa that Alexander Short was married
to Miss Mary Arnold and they began
their domestic life upon the farm where
their son Joseph now resides. For a num-
ber of years they were classed with the
farming people of this locality but event-
ually removed to Mount Pleasant about
1875, and remained residents of that city
until called to their final rest. In their
family were two sons and three daugh-

Joseph Short, the fourth in order of
birth, was educated in the district schools
and lived with his parents up to the time
of his marriage, which was celebrated on
the 2d of December, 1875, Miss Cath-
erine Smith becoming his wife. She was
born in Lowell, Iowa, a daughter of N. R.
and Mary Ann Welton (Shelliday)
Smith. Mr. Short had a half sister and
one own sister. Following their marriage
Joseph Short rented the old homestead.

his parents removing in the same year to
]\Iount Pleasant and there he lived for a
number of years, at the end of which time
with the capital he had acquired, he made
purchase of the property, comprising two
hundred and forty-two acres of rich and
arable land. He has remodeled all of the
buildings, which are in an excellent state
of repair and he has also built a hay and
cattle barn eighty-two by fifty-two feet
and a double corn crib. He has likewise
added to his landed possessions until he
now owns sixty acres in Jackson town-
ship and ninety-four acres in Baltimore
township aside from the home farm,
while his wife owns seventy-eight acres,
making a total of six hundred and thirty-
eight acres. The land is all well improved,
in good shape, and he has four houses
upon the different farms. He carries on
general farming and raises cattle, horses
and Poland China hogs and is now breed-
ing to thoroughbreds. Everything about
his place is in well kept condition and the
fields return rich harvests, while in the
pastures are found good grades of stock
that command excellent prices on the mar-

Unto Mr. and Mrs. Short have been
born five children : Mary Alta, William
H., O. E., Hazel and Norine, all at home.
About 1901 Mr. Short became ill with
asthma and went to Colorado Springs,
Colorado, for his health, returning after
three months. He gives his political
allegiance to the Democracy, but has nev-
er sought or desired office, concentrating
his energies upon his business affairs,

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 77 of 85)