pub American Biographical Publishing Company.

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

. (page 22 of 125)
Online Librarypub American Biographical Publishing CompanyThe United States biographical dictionary and portrait gallery of eminent and self made men. Iowa volume → online text (page 22 of 125)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

those only who help themselves. He who has faith
in his own powers, who is diligent in his calling and
has his heart in his work, is on the road to success.
By this direct route the subject of this brief notice
reached his present high position in the legal pro-

fession. He has for nearly twenty years studiously
avoided all the allurements connected with office,
thoroughly contented with the honors and emolu-
ments attending a conscientious discharge of the
duties of a busy lawyer's life. A native of Aurora,
near Buffalo, New York, he was born on the 7th of
December, 1827, and is the son of Eber and Hettie
(Henshaw) Boies, farmers by occupation.

Horace worked on the farm until he was of age,
except when attending the district school and the
Aurora Academy, then a first-class institution. He



Studied law at Aurora and Boston, both in Erie
county, and was admitted to the bar in Buffalo at
the general term of the supreme court, November,
1852. Prior to this date he had spent one winter in
Boone county, Illinois, teaching school.

After practicing his profession in Buffalo and vi-
cinity fifteen years, he in April, 1867, removed to
Waterloo, Iowa, his present home. Here he has
steadily continued his legal practice, and risen to
the front rank among the lawyers of the ninth judi-
cial district.

Before leaving New York State Mr. Boies served
one term (the winter of 1857-8) in the lower house
of the legislature, but has never since that time

sought office. In politics, he has always acted with
the republican party.

On the 1 8th of April, 1848, he was married to
Miss Adelia King, of Aurora. They had three chil-
dren, two of whom, with the mother, are dead. In
December, 1858, Mr. Boies was married to Miss
Versalia M. Barber, daughter of Dr.. Barber, of
Waterloo, and by her has three children.

Mr. Boies' eminent success as an attorney is owing
to two qualifications, not always combined in the
same person, viz., thorough acquaintance with- the
law, and great argumentative and persuasive power
before a jury. Both qualifications are the result of
hard study and untiring self-discipline.



COMPARATIVELY few business men are suc-
cessful in these days of fluctuation, strife and
competition. The risks are great in all enterprises,
and rarely does mere genius succeed, aside from
untiring industry, in any department. Moreover,
it is the man who follows a single line, the man
of one idea, in whatever occupation, who is most
likely to make his mark in the world. Mr. Graves,
who is here briefly noticed, is one of the few
who may fairly and rightly claim to have been
successful in business, and he has become so by
fulfilling the conditions of success as suggested
above. Of New England stock, born of good par-
entage, where character is the truest nobility and
correct habits the best heritage, it is hardly a mat-
ter of surprise that in this active great west he
should be so well known and highly respected in

He was born at Keene, New Hampshire, on the
8th of August, 1835, and is son of Caleb S. and
Eliza Graves nee Kingman, and, on his father's
and mother's side, of Welsh descent.

His ancestors participated in the battles of the
revolution, and later in the war of 1812. His early
life was that of a farm boy, and his strength of
constitution, and the habits of economy and in-
dustry which have been" of invaluable help to him,
may be traced to that source. He received his
early education at the common school and academy
of his native town, and while not at school his time
was spent on the farm. His father having but lim-

ited means, he had to depend upon his own efforts
for support, and from the sales of popcorn and
other little enterprises he maintained himself at
school. At the age of sixteen, with a capital of
thirteen dollars, the result of his savings, he left
home to commence life for himself. He secured
a situation in a bank of which his uncle was cash-
ier, and by steady application and close attention
he, at nineteen, was so well versed in his duties
as to be elected cashier of the Brighton Market
Bank, being selected out of thirty-six applicants, .
some of whom were old cashiers. The severe hard
work he had undergone commenced to tell upon his
health, and he was forced to resign and return to
the farm to recruit. Here, and through the effects
of a sea voyage, he was restored to health, and
spent some time in traveling over the country.

While at St. Louis he was offered a position in
the Mechanics' Bank, which was declined. In 1858,
through the solicitations of his brother, J. K. Graves,
Esq., who was doing a successful banking business
in Dubuque, he was prevailed upon to come to that
city. In November, 1858, he established the Du-
buque branch of the State Bank of Iowa, and was
elected its cashier. Here he continued until 1863,
when he sold his interest at a premium of one hun-
dred per cent and accepted the po'sition of cashier
in one of the leading banks of Chicago. Here,
again, his health failed, and he was prevailed upon
to accept a six months' vacation offered him by his
house, and, with Hon. D. N. Cooley, then United



States tax commissioner, spent some time in South
Carolina. Upon the appointment of Mr. Cooley
as commissioner of Indian affairs he was offered
the position of United States tax commissioner at
Charleston, South Carolina, which was declined,
and he returned to his duties as cashier. In 1867
the National State Bank and the First National
Bank, of Dubuque, were consolidated on condition
that Mr. Graves would take the management. He
accepted, and in March, 1867, was elected president
of the First National Bank, then the leading mon-
etary institution of Iowa. Afterward he sold his
interest to Hon. D. N. Cooley, and resigned the
presidency in his favor, intending to remove east,
having been offered the presidency of a bank there ;
but, by the advice of friends and by their earnest
persuasions, he started the Commercial National
Bank, of which he is president. This institution
is in very successful operation, and is one of the
leading solid institutions of the west.

Mr. Graves' time is too much engrossed by busi-
ness to accept political offices, though he has been
an active member of the board of education for

some time, and is also president of the Dubuque
Art Association and vice-president of the Dubuque,
Fort Dodge and Pacific railroad. In politics, he
is republican, though in no way a partisan.

He is a prominent member of the Masonic fra-
ternity, and high in its degrees.

He was married on the 10th of February, 1859,
to Miss Mary C. Tilden, of Keene, New Hampshire.
Their eldest son, George H. Graves, a bright, enter-
prising boy of nearly seventeen, is editor of the
"Boys' Journal,'' an amateur paper with a circula-
tion of over five hundred, now one of the oldest
amateur papers in the country.

Mr. Graves is a man of fine personal appearance,
courteous and friendly, and has marked social pow-
ers, which have gained the love and esteem of his
friends and acquaintances.

Such is the brief outline of the life history of
one who, struggling through trials, has worked his
way, unaided, to a place of high esteem, and per-
formed a work the influence of which shall live
in the hearts of those who have known him and
increase with the passing years.



THE subject of this sketch, a native of Breck-
enridge county, Kentucky, was born on the
the 28th of December, 1833. He is of German an-
cestry. His progenitors came to America about
two hundred years ago, and settled at Hagerstown,
Pennsylvania. His father, Henry Bruner, a native
of Kentucky, is now (1877) a resident of Galesburg,
Illinois. He is a man of industrious, persevering
habits, and to his lessons and examples of integrity
and uprightness the son is mainly indebted for his
success. At the age of thirty-five he made a pro-
fession of religion and became a member of the
Christian church, and ever since has been devoted
to furthering its interests ; though a hard-working
man, he was never too weary and the weather rarely
ever too bad to attend church with his family, at a
distance of six miles. When Francis began to at-
tend school, he took him on horseback, a distance
of two and a half miles, to a small log hut in the
woods, and later, for several winters, himself at-
tended school, sitting beside his boy, who assisted
him in solving his examples in arithmetic. By this

means he acquired a considerable knowledge of
figures, and learned to read and write with some
ease and fluency. He is a man of very tender
heart, and extremely sensitive to every dishonor-
able act. He is now in his sixty-fourth year, fresh
and vigorous, and has the management of his con-
siderable estate.

His mother, Matilda nee Claycomb, a native of
Kentucky, was descended from Irish and Scotch
parents. She shared with her husband all the
struggles of their pioneer life in Illinois, where they
settled in 1834. She possessed all the excellences
that go to make up a thrifty housewife, and had a
considerable degree of education. Both she and
her husband used every means in their power to
educate their children ; four of them are graduates,
and the remaining four received a liberal education.

Francis passed his boyhood and youth upon his
father's farm, attending occasional terms of school
in log school-houses, walking three miles and a por-
tion of the time riding six. His mind was early
turned toward the ministry, and at the age of four-



teen he was immersed and united with the church.
He entered heartily into the struggles of his family
in the new country; but at length felt that he must
give himself up to the accumulation of property (for
they had been very successful), or stop at once and
carry out his long-cherished plan of preparing for
the ministry. Accordingly, at the age of nineteen,
he entered Knox College, at Galesburg, Illinois,
and graduated from the same in 1857. After one
year of teaching, he spent three years in Europe at
the University of Halle, in Prussia, and at I'Ecole
de Paris, in France. At Halle, he studied both
modern and ancient languages, and attended the
lectures of Bernhardy and Pott, and also studied
theology and attended the lectures of Tholuck,
Roediger, Jacobi, and in philosophy and metaphys-
ics, those of Hyra and Erdmann. In Paris, he
studied the sciences and attended the lectures of
Flowrien, Willice, Edwards, Valancienne, Quater-
fudges and others. He also, during his European
tour, spent some time in Berlin, studying the mu-
seums, and also spent some time in London. His
object in going abroad was to perfect himself in his
studies. After closing his college course he deter-
mined to fit himself for a professorship of modern
and ancient languages, and for preaching.

Returning to America in i860, he engaged in
preaching in the Christian fellowship, and in 1865
was ordained at Monmouth, Illinois, where he
served as pastor for over five years.

In the darkest hour of our nation's history, in
1863, he was commissioned by Abraham Lincoln as
captain of company A, 7th United States Colored
Infantry. The regiment was composed of Mary-
land slaves, and did valiant service in the army of
the Union. After one year's service in Florida and
up the coast against Charleston, he was, by reason
of impaired health, discharged, and returned home.
While in the service he used every means for the
good of his men. It was his custom to assemble
them, and read the bible to them and pray with
them, and also to teach them to read and spell.

Although Mr. Bruner has never fully recovered
his health, and his labors much of the time have
been performed under intense suffering, he has
never relinquished his work.

He was a member of the Illinois legislature in the
sessions of 1866-67, and there, as elsewhere, ren-
dered efficient service.

In 1870 he was elected president of the Oskaloosa
College, and entered upon his duties, canvassing

for the college for the first two years, and in 1873
began his active duty as teacher. He is not only
president, but serves as professor of bible history
and exegesis. His extensive researches in the do-
main of science, natural and biblical history, enable
him to impart an extensive fund of useful knowl-
edge to those who look to him for instruction.

Mr. Bruner was married in 1858 to Miss Esther
Lane, a native of Ohio. They have a family of
seven children.

Politically, he is a republican.

Such is a brief record of the worthy president of
Oskaloosa College. Possessed of all the requisites to
satisfy the letter and the spirit of the duties devolv-
ing upon him, we are sure that he will bear the labor
and come out at the end like well-burnished gold.

Below we append a brief sketch of the Oskaloesa
College, of which Mr. Bruner is now president :

Early in the history of Iowa influential members of the
church of Christ, imbued with the spirit of the age, and
appreciating the importance of an institution of learning of
a higher order, projected upon a broad, modern, liberal and
christian basis, began to discuss the propriety of establish-
ing such a college. At length, in the state rrieeting which
convened at Mount Pleasant, June, 1855, it was resolved that
the time had come to begin the work. The location was
offered to the locality that should offer the greatest induce-
ments in the way of building fund, grounds, etc. Oska-
loosa outstripped its rivals, offering ten acres of ground and
thirty thousand and fifty dollars. At an adjourned state
meeting, held here from the loth to the 13th of October,
1856, it was located at this place; and A. Chatterton, R.
Parker, C. G. Owen, J. Adkins, W. T. Smith, J. H. Bacon,
A. S. Nichols, M. Edmundson, C. Hall, J. M. Berry, W. A.
Saunders, J. Swallow, S. H. Bonham and S. H. McClure
were appointed charter trustees. At a board meeting, on
the 8th of November, A. Chatterton, W. T. Smith and A.
Johnson were appointed a committee on articles of incor-
poration. On the 22d of November the report of the com-
mittee was made and adopted; and, on motion of A. Chat-
terton, the institution was named Oskaloosa College. On
the 29th of June, 1857, the contract for building was let to
J.J. Adams for twenty-four thousand five hundred dollars.
A. Chatterton and J. F. Rowe vvei-e employed as soliciting
agents. Within a few weeks they raised, in notes, endow-
ment stock to the amount of about twenty thousand dol
lars. Thus everything progressed encouragingly ; but the
hard times of 1857 and 1858 set in, subscribers were unable
to pay, contractors failed, work on the building and in rais-
ing endowment ceased, and general disappointment and
discouragement followed. Had it not been for the persist-
ent and self-sacrificing efforts of the treasurer, R. Parker,
and a few other devoted friends of the college, it would, at
this time, have gone under the sherifT's hammer.

After vexatious delays, lawsuits and barterings, about
two- thirds of the thirty thousand and fifty dollars was
realized, while a less proportion of the twenty thousand
dollars endowment was ever collected.

At the state meeting which convened at Davenport on
the 9th of June, i860, it was resolved to raise a relief fund
often thousand dollars. This effort was only partially suc-
cessful. But the friends of the college were indefatigable.
They believed the work was of God and would succeed ;
and they continued to hope, pray and labor in the good-
begun work until, piece by piece, the building has been
nearly completed.



On the 2d of September, 1861, under appointment of the
board, Messrs. W. J. and G. T. Carpenter opened a prepar-
atory school in two small rooms which had been tempo-
rarily finished for that purpose. A full description of the
unfinished building, with a debt of ten thousand dollars
hanging over it, of the woe-begone appearance of the build-
ing and surroundings, the institution being without a dol-
lar's worth of apparatus — not even a blackboard, not a
specimen, and only seats for sixteen pupils — the building
standing in a cornfield, fully eighty rods from any sidewalk,
and everything else of like fashion, would be at once sad
and amusing. In addition to all this, Sumter's cannon had
signaled the brave young men who were looked to for stu-
dents to the battlefield.

The two young teachers who had engaged to open the
college (.'), and who had arrived the evening before, on
going to the building, found the first thing to be done was
to open a way to the building and through the rubbish yet
in the rooms and halls. Their first day was spent with
coats off, in the professional (.'') way. On the second day,
the "immortal five," with which Oskaloosa College opened,
were enrolled : Geo. Wilson, James Brown, Jennie Course,
Jennie McCall and Maggie Stephens. During the entire
year there were only about fifty enrolled; and at the
close the teachers, who had agreed to take the tuition for
their pay, found, after paying for fitting school-rooms, etc.,
that they lacked just eighty-fiv.e dollars of having enough
to pay their board bill. For this amount they gave their
notes at ten per cent. These were dark days in our college
■ history, days that tried men's souls; but those who had the
matter in charge resolved, under the blessing of God, not
to know such a thing as " fail."

The attendance upon the several sessions has been as
follows: First (no catalogue), 50; second, 167; third, 208;
fourth, 220; fifth, 307; sixth, 248; seventh, 218; eighth, 169;
ninth, 262; tenth, 170; eleventh, 159; twelfth,'254.

The following are the names of the instructors that have
taught in the college, in the order of their employment by
the board: W. J. Carpenter, G. T. Carpenter, Mrs. A. H.
Carpenter, F. McGrew, Mrs. M. B. Smith, M. P. Givens,
A. F. Ross, B. W. Johnson (president), O. Goodrich, F. M.
Kirkham, F. M. Bruner (president), A. Hull, N. Dunshee,
J. L. Pinkerton. Besides these, several tutors and teachers

of specialties have taught more or less in the college.
Among the agents wKo should be gratefully remembered
may be named A. Chatterton, J. F. Rowe, J. B. Noe, N. E.
Cory, F. Walden, N. A. McConnell, G. T. Carpenter, Dr!
Hatton, W. J. Carpenter, J. Wiley, and last, but not least,
President Bruner. The names of hundreds, who, in vari-
ous ways, have aided the institution, are, we trust, written
in the Lamb's book of life.

The commercial department, which has proven such a
decided success, was opened by its present principal in
September, 1867.

At a joint meeting of the board and other friends of the
college, on the 19th of June, 1868, " on motion of G. T. Car-
penter, it was resolved to establish a bible department in
connection with the college." A. I. Hobbs, N. A. Mc-
Connell, F. Walden and W. J. Carpenter were appointed a
committee to report a method of securing necessary funds.
They reported that at least twenty-five thousand dollars
should be raised, and that the sisters throughout the state
should be requested to aid in the work. About one half of
this amount was raised by June, 1871, when President
Bruner accepted the presidency of the college, by whom it
was determined to enlarge the plan of this department and
to raise at least fifty thousand dollars for its endowment.
To this work he has since given his personal efforts with
an energy that merits and, in part, has secured success.
President Bruner has, under the action of the board, also
undertaken to establish a splendid botanical garden on the
college grounds. Thus it is seen that Oskaloosa College
has had its little beginning, its dark days, its ups and its
downs ; but it is now thought that a triumphant success is
within its reach, if only its friends prove true. Indeed, a
college that has achieved so much under such adverse cir-
cumstances can hardly fail of a glorious future now that it
has the best college building in the state, about fifty thou-
sand dollars of endowment, good apparatus, cabinets, libra-
ries and other necessary equipments, and a full, experienced
and determined faculty. Those who founded the institu-
tion were men of large and liberal views; and if those to
whom it now has a right to look for sympathy and mate-
rial aid do their duty, generations yet unborn will bless the
memories of all those who have contributed to this noble



AMONG the men of mark in Cerro Gordo county
. is Dr. Allen, a native of New York, who was
born at Angelica on the 29th of July, 1834. His
father, Asa S. Allen, was judge of Allegany county
in 1838. He afterward became a minister and
home missionary of the Congregational church, and
has been preaching for nearly forty years, being
now eighty years old and in good health. He is a
descendant of the Aliens of Medfield, Massachu-
setts, and retained the homestead, occupying the
only log house left after the burning of the village
by the Indians nearly two hundred years ago.
William's mother's maiden name was Kingsbury ;
she was a native of Medfield.

William attended the normal school at West New-
ton, Massachusetts, for two or three years, and

though thrown entirely upon his own resources
succeeded in mastering all the elementary and sev-
eral scientific branches. When a mere lad he went
to California by the overland route, his object being
to obtain money with which to complete his studies.
After two years of successful work he returned, and
began the study of medicine at Mineral Point, Wis-
consin, and in 1856 graduated from the University
of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, and has since prac-
ticed medicine in Wisconsin, Colorado and Iowa,
everywhere with good success. He has gained an
enviable reputation as a surgeon, and is widely
known as a physician of eminent skill and ability.
In cases of consultation he has been sent for forty
and sixty miles.

In i860 and 1861 he was in Colorado, and at the



outbreak of the war started for home to go into the
army. While on the plains, en route for Wisconsin,
he was met by a band of rebel deserters from the
United States army posts on the frontier going
southward to join the confederates. The doctor
had with him a stock of one hundred and fifty
horses, mules and cattle, of nearly all of which the
deserters robbed him, together with a valuable lot
of furs. He afterward recovered seven head of
cattle, and with six of these continued his journey
eastward, making the journey of nearly twelve hun-
dred miles in about forty-eight days. The follow-
ing amusing incident is worthy of mention : At
Clear Lake, in Cerro Gordo county, meeting a man
who began to vindicate the south, he told him that
he was about to fight the rebels, and might as well
begin at once, at the same time drawing his re-
volver. The rebel sympathizer took to his heels,
and the result was a short, hot chase, resulting in
harm to neither party.

Upon his arrival at Eau Claire, Wisconsin, his
old home, he at once proceeded to organize a com-
pany, and enlisted as a private in the i6th regiment
Infantry, but at Madison was promoted to the rank
of surgeon of the Iron Brigade. During the retreat
of the Union forces at the second battle of Bull Run,
Dr. Allen, with self-sacrificing patriotism and devo-
tion, gave himself up as a prisoner, that he might
attend to our wounded soldiers who were left on the
field. He was retained a prisoner for eight days

before being paroled, and during that time worked
incessantly with the wounded, without one third of
the usual allowance of food, and when he came into
our lines was utterly prostrated, and afterward con-
fined to a hospital for four months. On recovering
he was placed in charge of a hospital in Washing-
ton during one year. The rest of the time, until
the war closed, he was surgeon of the sth Wisconsin
Infantry. At the battle of Saylor's Creek he had
the entire charge of the wounded, and superin-
tended their removal to Berksville, Virginia, which
task occupied about five days. It is doubtful if
there was a more self-sacrificing and more patriotic
surgeon in the Union army.

Dr. Allen has been a member of the Masonic
order since 1865.

He has always been a republican, and firmly ad-
heres to the principles of that party. His religious

Online Librarypub American Biographical Publishing CompanyThe United States biographical dictionary and portrait gallery of eminent and self made men. Iowa volume → online text (page 22 of 125)