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The United States biographical dictionary and portrait gallery of eminent and self made men. Iowa volume online

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battle of Buena Vista, where both the colonel and
lieutenant-colonel were killed. Mr. Shaw returned
as a non-commissioned officer.

On the 24th of October, 1861, he was commis-
sioned colonel of the 14th regiment Iowa Infantry,



and served the full three years for which it enlisted.
His regiment was in the second brigade, third divi-
sion, sixteenth army corps, and after being fearfully
cut up at Pittsburgh Landing, it composed for a
time part of the " Iron Brigade," which consisted of
the 8th, 12th and T4th Iowa and 58th Illinois regi-
ments. No better fighting regiment went from Iowa
than the 14th, and no braver, more daring officer
than Colonel Shaw.

For a while he commanded the third division of
the sixteenth army corps, and when finally relieved
at the end of the three years, on the 29th of Octo-
ber, 1864, Major-General A. J. Smith paid a high
compliment to him for his " courage, patriotism and
skill " during the fifteen months that he had its com-
mand. When about to leave the division which he
had so bravely commanded, the officers made him a
present of a beautiful sword and scabbard, a token
of their kindly regard, which he cherishes highly.

The Shaws are a patriotic family. A cousin of
the Colonel, Robert G. Shaw, commanded the first
colored regiment, and was killed at Fort Wagner.

Colonel Shaw was originally a federalist, then a
whig, and latterly a republican. He is now a mem-
ber of the lower house of the general assembly, and
one of the leading members of that body. He is
not a member of any religious body..

Colonel Shaw has had three wives. In 1854 he
married Miss Helen A. Crane, of Jones county.
She had two children, and died in 1865. One child
survives her. His second wife was Rhetta Harmon,
who lived only one short year. His present wife
was Mrs. Elizabeth Higby, of Kalamazoo county,

Colonel Shaw is a tall, sparely built man, of nerv-'
ous temperament, quick to act and to think, and
always ready at repartee. He is as full of humor
as an egg is of meat. He is a good hater, and would
have pleased Dr. Johnson, hating hypocrisy, shams
of every description, and traitors preeminently. He
is attached to his friends and to every true, fair-
dealing person, and will travel a long distance to
render aid to the needy. In every respect he is a
valuable citizen.



JUDGE ROGERS, as he is universally called in
Fayette county, and who was a pioneer in West
Union, is a native of the Granite State, being born
in Moultonboro, on the 15th of August, 1820. His
father, John Rogers, was a farmer, whose ancestors
came from England, and settled at an early day in
the eastern part of New Hampshire. The wife of
John Rogers was Anna Wentworth, a descendant of
Governor Wentworth, and a relative of Hon. John
Wentworth of Illinois. In England it is one of the
noble families, but Judge Rogers places no weight in
pedigree. In this free country every man builds
his own ladder.

Jacob lost his father when the son was only four
years old ; at seven the family moved to Ossipee, in
the same state, and in 1831 to Bethel, Vermont.
There the subject of this notice worked out more
or less on farms, purchasing, after four or five years,
his time of his stepfather, Samuel Rogers, for one
hundred dollars. At this time, seventeen years of
age, he had had but a few months' schooling, and
now alternated between laboring in the summers,
attending academies at Randolph and Royalton

in the autumns, and teaching during the winters.
This course he pursued for three or four years.

In 1843 Mr. Rogers came as far west as McHenry
county, Illinois, where he taught steadily until 1845,
going thence to Monroe, Green county, Wisconsin,
where he taught four or five terms. He then went
into the mercantile business with Jacob Lybrand ;
continued in trade there until the summer of 1849,
and on the 7th of the following September he and
his partner took a stock of goods to the spot where
West Union, Fayette county, Iowa, now stands. The
town was not laid out, and there was no building
on the site. William Wells had a log house half a
mile away. Mr. Rogers built the first house, which
was made of hewn logs, in the place, and moved
into it on Christmas day, 1849. The goods were put
into Mr. Wells' log house, and the partnership was
soon dissolved.

In 1850 Mr. Rogers, Mr. Lybrand and Mr. Wells
laid out the town, and that year Mr. Rogers was
appointed postmaster, the nearest postoffice before
that date being at Elkader, Clayton county, twenty-
five miles distant. Provisions were brought from



Quasqueton, on the Wapsipinecon, in Buchanan
county, forty-five miles southward. For two or three
years Mr. Rogers acted as compulsory landlord,
there being no hotel in the place.

In 1850 the, lands in northern Iowa were not in
the market ; so Mr. Rogers, dropping the mercan-
tile business, took up claims, opened farms and sold
the claims, and when the lands came into market,
continued to deal in them, thus operating until 1857,
when the financial panic put a stop to the business
for a few years.

Prior to this date Mr. Rogers had read law, and
'was admitted to the bar as early as 1853, but did
not practice much until of late years.

In 1854 he was elected to the legislature, and
served two years. He was an anti-slavery man in
those days, and was the first man in Fayette county
to suggest the organization of the republican party.

He was elected county judge in 1857 ; reelected
in 1859, and resigned in January, 1861, soon after-
ward, for a few months, trying his hand, for a tem-
porary purpose, at journalism, he naming his paper
the " Republican Era."

In August, 1862, Judge Rogers raised company F,
of the 38th regiment, became its captain, and served

until January, 1865, when the 34th and 38th regi-
ments were consolidated.

On returning to West Union, Judge Rogers en-
gaged in farming a few years, dealing also in real
estate at the same time. During this period, in 1871
and 1872, he was also editor and proprietor of the
West Union " Gazette," doing good service in the
republican cause, and showing himself a writer of
much sharpness and power.

In 1873 'he judge went to California and spent a
year, and since his return has been engaged in the
practice of law, giving his whole time to his profes-
sion. He is of the firm of J. W. Rogers and Son, his
son, Oscar Wentworth, being in practice with him.

The judge was united in marriage with Miss Sarah
Jane Simons, of McHenry county, Illinois, on the
25th of February, 1848, and has five children, all
married except Omar A., who resides at Los Angeles,
California. Ada A. is the wife of Elisha M. Eggle-
ston, of Los Angeles ; Anna A., of Charles F. Bab-
cock, of Cedar Falls, Iowa, and Frances, of John S.
Sampson, of West Union. Oscar W., already men-
tioned, and who was married in May, 1874, to Miss
Mary F. Putnam, of Lynn, Massachusetts, is a young
lawyer of decided promise.



THE baptismal name of James Dyhouse Carter
was derived from his maternal ancestors, who
were among the early colonists from England. The
ancestors of his father were also from England.
James Carter was a native of Yorkshire, England,
who, with a company of others from the High Church
of England, landed in America in 1729; passed
through Albemarle sound up the Roanoke river, and
settled in Guilford county. North Carolina. There
he was married to Charity Vincent, by which union
they reared a family of eight children, one daughter
and seven sons. FiVe of the latter were lost in the
revolutionary war, three of them being killed at the
battle of Guilford Court House, on the 15th of
March, 1781. After the battle the tories took pos-
session of all they had, and he then engaged in the
saddle and harness business. Benjamin, the young-
est son, died of sickness, and the father did not long
survive, his death occurring in 1783. Having sold
his entire possessions for Continental money, Charity,

the only daughter, and Jesse, the only surviving son,
inherited the entire estate in this currency. The
money greatly depreciated in value while in their
hands, and Jesse at one time gave a hundred-dollar
bill for a jack-knife. Jesse Carter, father of the
subject of this sketch, was born in Guilford county.
North Carolina, in 1764. When he was quite young
he married Mary Hains. The spirit of adventure
which animated their forefathers would seem to have
been inherited by the descendants, for with the west-
ward march of civilization they were found among
the pioneers. Soon after their marriage they moved
to near Murphysboro, Tennessee, where she died,
leaving two children. They were sent back to her
friends in North Carolina, and Jesse moved to Crab
Orchard, Lincoln county, Kentucky, in 181 1. In
1812 he married Sarah Dyhouse, and by this union
they had ten children, five of them now, living. She
died in April, 1831. In 1832 he married Mary
Sword, with whom he lived but one year, when she



died. In 1835 he was married to Ann Starns. By
this marriage they had three children.

In religion Jesse was a Baptist. One of his prin-
cipal characteristics was excessive benevolence ; his
charity to the poor was often more than his personal
interests would admit. In appearance he was tall
and commanding, and slightly stooped ; in disposi-
tion very quiet, speaking but little, and never in a
boisterous way. He was hale and hearty, and almost
youthful, for one of his age, and the day of his death
walked over his farm giving instructions, remarking
that he should soon die. On his return to the house
he died while resting in his chair, on the 8th of
April, 1853. His wife survived him till 1874.

The maiden name of James' mother was Sarah
Dyhouse. Her father,- George Dyhouse, came to
America in 1772, and settled in Maryland. At the
breaking out of the revolution he espoused the
American cause, and served through the war. For
four years he belonged to Washington's life-guards,
and was for three years messenger, bearing informa-
tion and dispatches through the British lines. He
was present at the surrender of Cornwallis, at York-
town ; at the battles of Brandywine and Valley
Forge. At the latter place he was obliged to cut
his way out, in doing which he had the cap of his
knee cut off, which caused him to be ever afterward
a cripple. One's hand could not be placed on his
person without touching a scar from wounds received
in passing the pickets. While messenger he formed
the acquaintance of Mary Adams, who, in order to
promote the American cause, assisted in conveying
news of the enemy by secreting dispatches in her
clothing, and carrying them through the lines. Her
career through the revolution was almost as noted
as that of Lucretia Mott. She was married to Dy-
house at the close of the war, when^ they settled in
With county, Virginia. They were among the early
pioneers of Kentucky, settling at English Station.
During the interval of peace he worked at the black-
smith trade in Garrard county, Kentucky, and reared
a family of nine children. At the commencement
of the war of 1812 one of his sons enlisted, and
though a cripple for life from wounds received in the
previous war, Dyhouse could not let him go alone,
and not being able for active service he enlisted as
drum-major in Colonel Richard M. Johnson's regi-
ment. He was present at the battle of the Thames,
and others. At the close of the war, while crossing
the river on his way home, jubilant and enthusiastic
over the victory and declaration of peace, he was

joyously beating his drum, which caused a dispute
between parties on board, ending in an encounter in
which the drum-major received injuries from the
effects of which he died at Fort Meigs in 1815, leav-
ing a wife and nine children. The former lived to
be one hundred and four years old. The last fifteen
years of her life she was blind, but could distinguish
persons whom she had not met for years, and tell
the color and material of their clothing, as readily
as though she possessed her sight. She, with an old
negro who had gained his freedom by his services
in the war, and was termed " Revolutionary Jack,"
lived with her son-in-law, Austin Adams, till her
death in 1854. After the death of George Dyhouse
his heirs employed Robert P. Letcher, then a prom-
inent lawyer of Kentucky (afterward governor of
that state), as their agent to England to settle their
estate, an inheritance of forty thousand dollars. On
presenting the claim, owing to the children having
changed the last letter of their name, he obtained
nothing, and the entire sum went to the crown.

James was brought up on the farm. He received
at intervals, in all, about three months' schooling in
the common schools of Lincoln county, but by
perusal of studies alone he acquired a liberal edu-
cation, — keeps his own books and transacts all his
own business ; is a constant reader, and well versed
in • literature, there being no subject, religious or
national, ancient or modern, on which he is not well
posted and enjoys a discussion. After the third
marriage of his father he left home, from choice.
When thirteen years old Hiram Roberts obtained
for him a situation with Archibald Shanks, to be
educated and taught the mercantile business; but
owing to his having read Dr. Franklin's warnings,
and Mr. Shanks placing him in a saloon to sell liquor,
he would not remain with him. Leaving Mr. Shanks
being destitute of means, and too young to earn any,
he engaged to learn the saddle and harness trade
with Henry Beddow. At the end of four years he
had finished learning the trade. At the age of nine-
teen he started north as a traveling saddler, and
worked at many places. The following are some of
the incidents that had a decided influence in form-
ing his habits and course of life. At Salem, Indi-
ana, he engaged to work for a man who proved to
be a grand rascal. After having worked some time
the man, in order to cheat him of his wages, circu-
lated the report that he was a runaway apprentice.
James produced his indentures and proved to the
contrary ; but the fellow being worthless, he received



no remuneration for his work. Ever after, in seek-
ing employment, one of his first objects was to
ascertain if the parties were reliable. His early
resolutions to form temperate habits were prompted
by the example of William Batterton, with whom he
worked at Bloomington, Indiana. Mr. Batterton
had been a very intemperate man, but resolved total
abstinence, and in order that he might overcome the
temptation of drinking he worked five years with a
pint of liquor hanging over his work-bench. The
bottle hung there till all its contents had evaporated,
without his once tasting liquor. James thought if
Mr. Batterton, who had been an habitual drunkard,
could so manfully resist the temptation of a culti-
vated appetite, that he could surely benefit by his
example, and resolved to live a temperate man. He
continued working at different places until he would
procure sufficient amount of means to proceed on
his journey northward. He did his last work at
Greencastle, Indiana, and arrived at Bainbridge, In-
diana, on the 6th of March, 1836, with his kit of
tools and seventy-five cents in money, where he
commenced business" for himself There were but
three log cabins in the place. His first shop was
made of buckeye poles. The fireplace consist€d of
a hole in the floor, and one in the top of the roof for
the smoke to escape. The only store was heated by
a kettle of coals. The citizens being anxious for
him to commence business, John W. Cooper, one of
the citizens, proposed to furnish him one hundred
dollars, providing he would return him one hundred
and fifty at the end of a year for the use of it ; but
as he succeeded so nicely in the business, when the
time arrived for the payment Mr. Cooper only re-
quired the original sum with ten per cent interest.
He boarded with Mr. Cooper, at seventy-five cents
per week, and he was to take the amount in stock
from the shop. His business increased till it became
necessary to build a larger shop. The main build-
ing in the place was a grocery and saloon, and in
building it was more convenient to build near it;
but he had such' an abhorrence for liquor that he
would not build in range of such an establishment.
Some of the citizens were determined unless he
placed it in range they would not help him in rais-
ing it, so they all left him. Some of the old pioneers
of temperate habits came and assisted him, and after
the other parties found he would build v/here he
chose they offered to help him if he would treat to
a galloh of whisky ; this he would not do. In that shop
was placed the first stove that was in the vilage.

While boarding at Mr. Cooper's he formed the
acquaintance of Miss Cintha Graves, a sister of
Mrs. Cooper and daughter of Peter Graves, formerly
of Knox county, Tennessee, and one of the first
pioneers of Indiana. They were married on the
13th of October, 1836. She died on the 8th of
April, 1854. By this union they had eight children,
four of whom are living, one boy and three girls.

On going to housekeeping, himself and wife carried
their cupboard ware and cooking utensils home in
their arms. By industry and economy they were so
successful that in 1840 they had accumulated three
thousand dollars. After a time, in order to improve
the country and town, he engaged in speculating in
fine horses ; but it was at too early a day to make it
a success, and he lost some nine thousand dollars.
During 1841 and 1842, there being no demand for
merchandise, he cut and split rails at fifty cents per
hundred, to support his family. Business opening
again, he took a sub-contract to carry the mail from
Indianapolis to Montezuma. The mail he had car-
ried by a boy whom he had found in the woods,
almost starved to death, and was afterward bound to
him by the overseers. He obtained sufficient amount
of funds from this contract to reestablish business,
and met with great financial success. He resolved
to become a public benefactor, and spent much
money in making plank roads, railroads, building
churches, school-houses and academies. The con-
tractor of the academy failed, so he superintended,
built and paid for the Bainbridge Male and Female
Academy. He was afterward reimbursed by the
community for a part of it. To improve the place
he built and furnished a fine residence on Main
street, on one of the most desirable building lots in
town. Close confinement to the shop and business
was injurious to his health, and for a recruit he took
a contract on the Louisville, New Albany and Chi-
cago railroad. After the completion of the road
he engaged in buying mules and horses, and ship-
ping them to the southern markets. In 1859 he
lost thirteen thousand dollars' worth of stock by
overheat on the train and disease which followed.
From this embarrassment he did not fully recover
till 1869.

In 186 1 he left the shop and purchased a farm
three miles south of Bainbridge, where he remained
ten years. In 187 1 he moved to near Winterset,
Iowa, and engaged in raising thoroughbred stock.
He still continues in that business, with marked



In politics, he is a firm republican.

Mr. Carter is gifted with a fine constitution, which
alone could have borne him through .the labor of
this life. His mental and moral standing is suffi-
ciently given in his record. Sound in judgment,
thoroughly conscientious, broad in views as in cul-
ture, well informed on a great range of subjects,
one who sounds the depth of everything he handles

and judges accordingly, affable in manner yet firm
in purpose, he is one in which implicit confidence is
placed by all who know him. Mr. Carter is a kind
and indulgent parent, devoting his whole time to the
education and interest of his children.

He married Miss Pricilla, daughter of Michel
Daggy, on the 19th of October, 1854. By this union
they have one child, a girl.



LEWIS WILLIAMS ROSS was born in Butler
^ county, Ohio, on the 15th of October, 1827.
His lineage is from the Scotch. The annals of the
family show that his ancestors were Protestants, and
were driven from Scotland into north Ireland, and
thence to the New World. Daniel Ross, one of the
colonists of New Jersey, was the first representative
of the family in this country. The Rosses, from
time immemorial, have followed agriculture, and it
is believed that the subject of this sketch is the only
one of the name who has made a departure from
that pursuit and kindred vocations. His father,
Amos Ross, and grandfather, Ezekiel Ross, were
pioneers in Ohio, settling there in 1812, when the
country was an unbroken wilderness. At the age of
twenty Lewis W. left his father's farm, with such
education as the log school-house of those days
furnished, and studied at Farmers' College, near Cin-
cinnati, for two years. He then entered Miami
University, Oxford, and there graduated in 1852.
At Farmers' College his studies were mainly under
Dr. R. H. Bishop, a Scotchman of great learning and
singular abilities as a teacher. At the university
he had among his instructors James C. Moffett, now
of Princeton College, and James Mathews, the father
of Stanley Mathews, United States senator. Among
his classmates we find the names of David Swing,
now of Chicago, Benjamin Harrison, of Indianapolis,
and Milton Saylor, of Cincinnati.

From college Mr. Ross passed into the law office
of Scott and McFarland, Hamilton, Ohio, and there
remained two years, gaining admission to the bar in
1854. , In 1856 he visited Cass county, Iowa, partly
on business and partly home-hunting. Being pleased
with the Nishnabotna country, and being assured
that the Mississippi and Missouri River railroad
would soon be constructed to the Missouri river,

he settled in Lewis, then the county seat, intending
to follow his profession after the manner of pioneer
lawyers ; but he was soon crazed by the mania for
speculation then prevailing throughout the west, and
made such investments of his limited means as to
require his undivided attention for the next two
years, resulting at the end of that time in a total loss
of capital and labor. His experiences in this respect
are like those of many early settlers in Iowa. He
is not the only lawyer who has tried to gain wealth
by buying and running a saw-mill.

In 1858 Mr. Ross opened a law office in Lewis,
and soon found full, but not very lucrative, employ-
ment in settling up the mistakes and failures of
the hard times of 1857-58. In i86i he removed
to Council Bluffs, where he has since quietly but
persistently followed his profession.

In the autumn of 1863 he was the nominee of the
republican party for the state senate in a district
then considered close, and was elected by a majority
of several hundred votes. His record as a legisla-
tor is without spot or blemish. He was a member
of the judiciary committee at the sessions of 1864
and 1866, and chairman of the committee on public
lands at the latter session. Perhaps he did more to
shape legislation, and to prevent the enactment of
unwise laws, than in the origination of subjects of
legislation. Of conservative mind and painstaking
habits, he was regarded as a safe leader. In 1864 Mr.
Ross was elected by the legislature a trustee of the
State University of Iowa for a term of four years ; was
reelected in 1868, and served until the reorganiza-
tion of the university, and the creation of a board of
regents. Without any solicitation on his part, he
was elected regent in the session of 1874 for a term of
six years, and now holds that office. As trustee and
regent, he has done much in developing and enlarg-



ing the work of that institution. The establishment
of the departments of law and of medicine has been
the especial subject of his labors. Here, as in the
legislature, his faculty as an organizer has shown
itself. The idea being furnished, he has found the
ways and means for its practical operation. Politi-
cally, Mr. Ross has always been a republican.

Religiously, he comes of Presbyterian stock, but
since settling in Iowa has been in connection with

Online Librarypub American Biographical Publishing CompanyThe United States biographical dictionary and portrait gallery of eminent and self made men. Iowa volume → online text (page 66 of 125)