Homer Howard Field.

History of Pottawattamie County, Iowa, from the earliest historic times to 1907 (Volume 1) online

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time and energies upon hi- commercial interests, in which he is meeting with
signal success.


George Keeline was a well-to-do and prominent citizen of Council Bluffs,
who dated his residence from 1868 and here made his home until he was
called to his final rest. He engaged in the stock business and also in loaning
money but lived practically retired while in Pottawattamie county. He was
born near Frankfort, Germany, on the 3d of March, 1825, a son of Conrad
and Louisa (Gemmer) Keeline, both of whom were natives of Germany. They
came to America in 1839, settling at Wheeling, West Virginia.



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In the common schools of the fatherland George Keeline acquired his edu-
cation. He was just fourteen years of age when he came with his parents to
America and he resided with his father and mother in Wheeling, AVest Vir-
ginia, until he attained his majority, when he started in business on his own
account. Crossing the river from Wheeling, he settled at Bridgeport, Ohio,
where he turned his attention to milling pursuits and operating sawmills, plan-
ing mills, and wood mills of all kinds. He employed a large number of work-
men and engaged in the manufacture of lumber and various kinds of wood
work. Their product was all hauled to Ohio, for there were no railroads at
that time to provide means of shipment. However, he found a ready sale for
all of his products. His business steadily increased, bringing him a gratifying
income, his success resulting from his close application, his earnest purpose and
the capability which he manifested in placing his output upon the market.

While living in Wheeling, West Virginia, Mr. Keeline was married to
Miss Sophia Heneca, also a native of Germany, born May 4, 1827, and a
daughter of Albert and Adaline (Hartwig) Heneca, who came from Germany
to America in 1830. They, too, took up their abode in Wheeling, West Vir-
ginia, where Mr. Heneca engaged in the manufacture of brick during the
greater part of his life, he and his wife remaining residents of that city until
called to their final home. Mr. and Mrs. Keeline became the parents of nine
children, six of whom are now living : Mrs. Spencer Smith, whose husband is
an attorney of Council Bluffs; George A.; Oscar; William S. ; and Harry W.
All four of the sons are married and reside in Council Bluffs. Cora, the sixth
member of the family, is the wife of Corydon L. Felt, manager and one of the
stockholders of the Western Steel & Iron Company, of Woodbine, Iowa, with
office at No. 5 Everett block in Council Bluffs. Mr. and Mrs. Felt and their
two children, Ruth and Dorothy, reside with her mother, Mrs. Keeline. The
members of the Keeline family who are deceased are Louise, Amelia and

While engaged in the milling business in Bridgeport, Ohio, Mr. Keeline
came to western Iowa in 1854 and bought several thousand acres of land in
this part of the state, some as low as eighty-six cents per acre. He did not lo-
cate in the city, however, until 1868, when he disposed of his sawmills and
other business interests at Bridgeport for the purpose of looking after his in-
terests here. His family followed in 1869, locating in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
Although he established his home in Council Bluffs he began to improve his
farm land, which he had previously purchased. He engaged also in loaning
money until 1873, for indolence and idleness were utterly foreign to his nature
and he could not content himself without some business affairs to occupy his
time and attention. In the year mentioned, however, the firm of George Kee-
line & Son was organized to conduct a cattle range and stock-growers' business
in Colorado. The son, George A. Keeline, had entire charge of the business
and in 1877 moved their stock to Wyoming, where he purchased land that had
water upon it. This gave them a range of over a million acres and at the time
of the father's death they had about twenty-five thousand cattle. In all of his
commercial transactions George Keeline displayed sound judgment and keen
executive force — a combination of qualities which rarely fails to bring the de-


sired reward in the business world. He was a director and stockholder in the
Council Bluffs Savings Bank. In all of his business affairs he was conservative
and never signed a note in his life. He started out without any means but rec-
ognized the fact that labor is the basis of success and as the result of his judi-
cious investment and energy, intelligently applied, he left an estate valued at
about a half million dollars.

Mr. Keeline was never an office seeker nor did he desire political prefer-
ment. On the contrary he was perfectly content that others should hold office,
yet he was a firm advocate of the political principles which he supported by
his ballot. His early allegiance was given to the whig party and later he be-
came a stalwart republican, continuing a supporter of the party until his death.
He was a prominent member of the Masonic order here and in fact was the
first representative of the lodge in Council Bluffs and assisted in organizing the
original lodge at this place. He attended the Lutheran church, of which his
wife is a member and to its support he contributed liberally. His industry and
diligence in business had gained for him a gratifying measure of success until
he became a prominent and worthy resident of the city and county, recognized
also as one of its leading men. He died here December 15, 1901.

Although quite aged, Mrs. Keeline is yet very active and is in the enjoy-
ment of good health and she has her children around her and to her they pay
daily visits. She resides in a large brick dwelling at No. 1133 East Pierce
street, her daughter, Mrs. Felt, and her family living with the mother. This
is the old Keeline homestead and the brick used in the construction of the
house was manufactured on the place by Mr. Keeline. Mrs. Keeline selected
the home site in 1867 while on a trip here to look at the country. She also owns
other valuable property in the city, while the sons are owners of some of the
finest residences of Council Bluffs. The family has long been a prominent one
here, the name of Keeline standing as a synonym for activity, industry and en-
terprise in the business circles in Council Bluffs and Pottawattamie county.


One of the well known and prominent lawyers of Council Bluffs is John
M. Galvin, who has successfully engaged in practice in this city since 1889.
His entire life has been spent in Iowa, for he was born in Fairfield, this
state, on the 7th of November, 1858, and was there reared and educated,
attending Parsons College, Fairfield, from which he was graduated in 1880
with the first class that ever completed the course in that institution. His
parents were Thomas and Bridget (Scanlan) Galvin, both natives of County
Kerry, Ireland. The father came to the United States in 1849 and the
mother a year later. They became residents of Iowa in 1857.

Soon after leaving school John M. Galvin commenced the study of law
and was admitted to the bar at Fairfield in 1883. Opening an office, he
there engaged in general practice until 1889, which year witnessed his
arrival in Council Bluffs. It was not long ere his ability in his chosen


profession was recognized and he has since built up an excellent practice
which is constantly increasing. He has made somewhat of a specialty of
real-estate litigation and in the trial of cases has met with most excellent suc-
cess, so that he is now ranked with the leading representatives of the profes-
sion in Council Bluffs.

While a resident of Fairfield, Mr. Galvin served as city solicitor for a
part of two terms and is now a member of the library board of Council
Bluffs, being chosen its president in July, 1907. He is a republican in
politics but votes for the men whom he believes best qualified for office re-
gardless of party ties. Fraternally he is a member of the Ancient Order of
Hiberians and of the Knights of Columbus. His life has been one of use-
fulness and the success that has come to him is certainly well merited.


Lewis S. Allen, a prominent and influential agriculturist residing in Lay-
ton township, where he owns three hundred and forty-eight acres and is also
extensively engaged in feeding cattle, is a native of Petersburg, Menard county,
Illinois, where his birth occurred on the 19th of March, 1850. His parents
were John W. and Melinda J. (Watkins) Allen, and the father, who was a
native of Kentucky, removed to Illinois with his parents when twelve years
of age, locating in Sangamon county. After his marriage he took up his
abode in Menard county, and in 1866 came to Iowa, settling at Eight Mile
Grove, Cass county. Eight months after his arrival in this state he pur-
chased one hundred and sixty acres of land northwest of Atlantic and subse-
quently removed to Nebraska, in which state he spent about five years. He
then remained a resident of Florida for a year and on the expiration of that
period went to Kansas City, where his demise occurred about 1892. He had
a family of nine children, six of whom survive, namely: Samuel W., who
makes his home at Two Rivers, Washington; Waterman T., living in Mat-
thews, Indiana; George, a resident of British Columbia; Martha B., the wife
of George Atkinson, of Denver, Colorado ; Dora, who became the wife of J.
Huffmann and makes her home in Wichita county, Kansas; and Lewis S.,
of this review.

Lewis S. Allen acquired his education in the common schools and
remained under the parental roof until he had attained the age of twenty-two
years, when he started out in business life on his own account, operating a
tract of rented land at Eight Mile Grove for two years. In the fall of 1875
he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of his present farm and by reason
of his enterprise and well directed business ability he was enabled to con-
tinually add to his place until within its boundaries are now comprised three
hundred and forty-eight acres of rich and productive land. When he bought
his land in Layton township it was all wild and unimproved and much arduous
labor was necessary in order to transform the property from its uncultivated
condition into its present high state of development, but Mr. Allen resolutely


set to work and it is only necessary to see his place in order to know how
well he has succeeded. He has erected all of the buildings on the farm and
has also planted all of the trees, which add materially to the attractive appear-
ance of the property. In addition to his general agricultural interests he has
also been quite extensively engaged in feeding cattle for fifteen years, prin-
cipally of the Hereford breed. He is at present feeding one hundred and
twenty-five head of cattle. He is recognized as one of the prosperous and
influential farmers of the county and has, moreover, the esteem and respect
of his fellowmen by reason of the honorable methods which he has ever pur-
sued in the attainment of his success.

On the 19th of March, 1873, Mr. Allen was united in marriage to Miss
Harriet E. Trailer, of Cass county, Iowa, and a daughter of William Trailer,
who was a prominent agriculturist of that county, but is now deceased. Unto
our subject and his wife have been born nine children, eight of whom sur-
vive: Ada B., the wife of Shelton Allen, of South Dakota; Sarah, who became
the wife of William H. Burkey and resides in Layton township, this county;
Lorena, the wife of Fred M. Moon, who lives in Marne, Iowa; Eleanor and
Efiie, who are at home ; Ira, who is an agriculturist of Layton township, this
county; William, at home; and Avery, who is also yet under the parental

In his political views Mr. Allen is a stalwart advocate of the democratic
party and has served for two terms as township trustee and for several years
has also been a member of the school hoard, the cause of education ever finding
in him a warm and helpful friend. Fraternally he is connected with Grove
lodge, No. 292, A. F. & A. M., of Marne; Berlin lodge, 0. E. S. ; and Marne
lodge of the Ancient Order of United Workmen. His religious faith is indi-
cated by his membership in the Methodist Protestant church, in which he
is serving as one of the trustees. He has resided on his present farm for
almost a third of a century and certainly deserves much credit for the work
which he did in helping to reclaim this district for the uses of civilization,
and he is widely and favorably known throughout the community by reason
of his long residence here. The success which he has gained is the merited
reward of his own labor and indefatigable industry and the business methods
which he has ever followed are worthy of emulation and commendation.


Dr. Frank W. Dean, a well known oculist and aurist of Council Bluffs,
was born in Satara, East India, on the 9th of February. 1863, but was only five
years old when he accompanied his parents, S. C. and A. E. (Abbott) Dean, on
their return to the United States. The father, who was a Congregational mis-
sionary, was a native of Massachusetts, but the mother was born in India,
her parents being missionaries to that country. At the age of nine years Dr.
Dean became a resident of Jefferson county, Nebraska, where he grew to man-
hood. He had good educational advantages and was graduated from Doane Col-


lege at Crete, Nebraska, in 1886. Later he entered the University of Minnesota
at Minneapolis, where he pursued a medical course and was graduated in 1890
with the degree of M. D. His theoretical knowledge was then supplemented by
practical experience in the hospitals of Minneapolis and St. Paul, where he
remained for one year, and for a year and a half was engaged in country prac-
tice at Mineola, Iowa. Going abroad, Dr. Dean then studied in Vienna and
London, making a specialty of the diseases of eye, ear, nose and throat, and
becoming very proficient along those lines. On his return from Europe, he
located for practice at Council Bluffs, December 2, 1895, and has since given
his attention wholly to his specialties as an oculist and aurist.

That Dr. Dean stands high in the esteem of his professional brethren is
indicated by his being chosen to various offices in the medical societies to
which he belongs. He has been both president and secretary of the Council
Bluffs Medical Society and is now treasurer of the same, and was secretary
of the Pottawattamie County Medical Society for several years. He is also
a member of the American Medical Association and the Medical Society of
the Missouri Valley and is a fellow of the American Academy of Ophthal-
mology and Oto-Laryngology. Socially the Doctor is a member of the Masonic
fraternity, the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks, the Commercial Club
and the Council Bluffs Rowing Association. A genial, pleasant manner has
made him quite popular both in business and social circles and he is held in
the highest esteem by all who know him.


Henry Schnackel, who is extensively engaged in farming, is now living
on section 6, Valley township, but in the spring of 1908 intends to take up
his abode upon a farm of three hundred and twenty acres on section 12,
James township, which he has recently purchased. A native of Illinois, he
was born in Cook county on the 2d of March, 1862, his parents being Joe and
Mary (Harder) Schnackel, who were natives of Germany and came to the
United States in the early '50s. They located in Cook county, Illinois, where
the father engaged in cultivating rented land for eight years He then removed
to Effingham county, Illinois, where he purchased a farm, and both he and
his wife spent there remaining days in that locality. In their family were
five children: Lena, the wife of Henry Burke, of Illinois; John, of this
county; Henry; Fred, who is living in Rogers, Illinois: and Sophia.

Henry Schnackel was a young man of twenty years when he arrived
in Pottawattamie county in 1882. He had acquired his education in the
public schools of his native state and on seeking a home in western Iowa set-
tled near Minden, where he worked as a farm hand for six years. He then
rented a farm for twelve years and with the capital which he saved from his
earnings purchased a tract of land of one hundred and thirty-two acres on
section 6, Valley township. He cultivated this for some time with good suc-
cess but has recently sold the property and bought another farm of three hun-


dred and twenty acres on section 12, James township, to which he intends
to remove in the spring of 1908. He is quite extensively engaged in farming.
The pleasant home life of Mr. Schnackel had its beginning in his mar-
riage in 1890 to Miss Louisa Study, a daughter of Henry and Margaret Study,
the former a native of Germany and the latter of Illinois. The mother is now
deceased, while the father makes his home in Pleasant township, Pottawat-
tamie county. In their family were nine children, including Mrs. Schnackel.
Six children have been born unto our subject and his wife: Ida, Harvey,
Melvin and Lloyd, all at home; Joe, deceased; and Clarence, who is also at
home. Mr. Schnackel prefers to give his undivided attention to his business
affairs, in which he is meeting with gratifying success. He came to Pottawat-
tamie county empty-handed about a quarter of a century ago and is today one
of its substantial residents.


Dr. Rose H. Rice, of Council Bluffs, is one of the successful physicians of
western Iowa and in her practice has gained the thorough respect and confi-
dence not only of the general public but of the profession as well. She was
born in Fremont county, this state, near Tabor, and was there reared to the
age of eighteen years. Her father, L. K. Hammond, was born near Buffalo,
New York, in 1813 and, removing westward, established hi.s home in Mills
county, Iowa, in 1855. It was then a pioneer district, in the midst of which
he pre-empted two hundred acres of government land, upon which not a
furrow had been turned or an improvement made. He resolutely took up
the task of breaking the sod and cultivating the new fields and upon that place
he lived until his death, which occurred in 1889. He was married a second
time, in 1864, to Miss Harriett Counsel, a native of Illinois, and unto them
were born three children: Dr. Rose II. Rice, of this review; Colfax, who died
in infancy; and Lily H., now the wife of Lewis McDaniel, of Council Bluffs.
By a former marriage Mr. Hammond bad two sons, who served as soldiers in
the Civil war. The Hammond family is of Scotch lineage and was founded
in America by John Hammond, the grandfather of Dr. Rice, who was born
in Scotland in the eighteenth century. Some years alter his arrival in America
he removed to Mills county, Iowa, where his last days were passed.

Dr. Rice acquired her literary education in the public schools and at the
age of eighteen years secured a license to teach. She followed that profession
for eleven years in Mills, Fremont and Pottawattamie counties and proved
a capable instructor, imparting readily and clearly to others the knowledge
that she had acquired. In the usual periods of vacation she pursued sumin?.'
courses at the Western Normal School at Shenandoah. Iowa, and in Tabor
College, and when she felt that her more specific literary education was com-
pleted she took up the study of medicine and was graduated from Omaha


Medical College with the class of 1903. She then located for practice in
Council Bluffs, where she has since remained, and here she has secured a
liberal patronage, being retained as the family physician in many of the best
homes of the city. She performs her professional duties with a high sense
of conscientious obligation, has always been a close and discriminating stu-
dent of the principles of the medical science, and by reading and investigation
has kept constantly in touch with the onward march of the profession that
has resulted from research and investigation.


After a useful and well spent life John Schoentgen passed away on the
17th of October, 1906, honored and respected by all who knew him. For
almost forty years he has been a resident of Council Bluffs and he stood high
in business circles, being a member of the well known firm of Groneweg &
Schoentgen, conducting one of the largest wholesale grocery houses in the
state of Iowa.

Mr. Schoentgen was a native of Belgium, born July 18, 1848, and was
a son of Phillip and Margaret (Zimmer) Schoentgen, both of whom were
born in Austria and from that country removed to Luxemburg, Germany.
Later the father became foreman of a china factory in L'Alluviers, Belgium,
serving in that position throughout the remainder of his life. There he
died at a comparatively early age and his wife died in Echternach, Luxem-
burg, the family home.

During his boyhood John Schoentgen attended the public schools and
pro-gymnasium of Luxemburg and acquired a good education. Hearing
favorable reports of the new world, he decided to try his fortune on this side
of the Atlantic, and in 1865, at the age of seventeen years, he sailed for
America, locating first at Weston, Missouri, where he secured a position in a
bakery and at the same time attended school. He was afterward employed
as bookkeeper at that place until 1868, when he came to Council Bluffs to
accept the position of clerk in the jewelry store of his cousin Charles B.
Jacquemin, where he remained for a few years. He then formed a partner-
ship with John Berwein in the retail grocery business at the corner of Main
and Willow street. He soon acquired his partner's interest and conducted
the business alone for several years, meeting with excellent success. In Au-
gust, 1878, he engaged in the wholesale grocery business as a member of the
firm of Groneweg & Schoentgen, William Groneweg being the senior partner.
Year by year their business steadily increased, until now it is one of the
largest and most substantial jobbing concerns on the Missouri river. In
1900 the business was incorporated into the Groneweg & Schoentgen Com-
pany, the officers being William Groneweg, president; John Schoentgen,
vice president and general manager; and P. H. Nichols, secretary and treasurer.


They erected a large building at 821-831 West Broadway, where they still
carry on business, employing a large number of men both in the wholesale
house and upon the road, and they are in control of the largest trade of any
establishment of the kind in this section of the state.

On the 11th of August, 1872, Mr. Schoentgen was married in Council
Bluffs to Miss Mary Kintz, a native of Iowa City, Iowa, and a daughter of
Charles Joseph and Anna Mary (German) Kintz. who were born in Bavaria,
Germany, and came to the United States at an early day. Locating in Iowa
City, Mr. Kintz there engaged in the tailoring business for many years but
during the last fifteen years of his life lived retired, passing awayin 1888.
His wife also died in Iowa City in 1884. Three children were born unto
Mr. and Mrs. Schoentgen, namely: Edward P., who is vice president of the
Groneway & Schoentgen Company and also a member of the firm of Cox &
Schoentgen, architects of Council Bluffs, and i- represented od another page
of this volume; Elsie Mary, the wife of Thomas I). Metcalf, Jr., who is
president of the Metcalf Company, retail clothiers of this city; and Caroline,
wife of Eldin H. Lougee, who is engaged in the real-estate and loan business
in Council Bluffs and whose sketch is also found in this work.

Mr. Schoentgen continued in active business up to the last but for a
few years prior to his death he suffered with throat trouble. In October,
1906, he went to Rochester, Minnesota, to undergo an operation and died
at a hospital in that city twelve 'lay- later, on the 17th of October, 1906, his
remains being brought back to Council Bluffs for interment. In his death
the community realized that ft had lost a valued and useful citizen — a man
upright and honorable in all the relations of life. He was what' the world
terms self-made, his success being due entirely to his own unaided efforts,
for he began his business career without capital or influential friends to aid

Online LibraryHomer Howard FieldHistory of Pottawattamie County, Iowa, from the earliest historic times to 1907 (Volume 1) → online text (page 31 of 59)