History of Floyd County, Iowa - 1882 - Pleasant Grove Twp

Floyd County >> 1882 Index

History of Floyd County, Iowa
Chicago: Inter-state Publishing Co., 1882.

Pleasant Grove Township
submitted by Kathy Gerkins

Henry Allen Page 844

Was born in Canada and moved to township 94 north, 16 west in 1878. He married Mrs. Joseph Johnson, nee Julia Ripley. Mr. Allen is one of the oldest residents in the county. She is a daughter of Col. David Ripley, formerly County Judge, whose sketch will be found among the illustrious dead. To Mrs. Allen we have given the credit of being the first in the field of pioneer education in Riverton and Pleasant Grove. She also taught one of the earliest schools in St. Charles Township. Mrs. Allen’s life has been continually upon the frontier line until very recently, her father at first moving to Floyd so early as to necessitate a retreat from the Indians for two years; then back again; then, in 1864, to Colorado; then two years in Southern Iowa; then again north into Southeast Dakota. Mrs. Allen was born in Gallia, Ohio, May 8, 1837.

Frank Beal Pages 844 – 845

One of the residents of the Maine or “Down East” settlement, was born in Dover, Maine, Dec. 14, 1842. He was a son of Herman and Phebe (Doore) Beal; his mother was a daughter of Joel Doore of the same town, and sister of Joel Doore, who now resides in this township. Bringing the relation of “Uncle Joel” to a veritable fact in Mr. Beal’s case. Mr. Beal received the common school education of a Maine district school, living at home until his thirteenth year, when, in his sixteenth year, the gold fever seized him and he packed his trunk and started westward via the isthmus. For two years he was mining at Willow Springs, Placer County, after which he “railroaded it” on the San Francisco & San Jose Road. California life did not agree with him – the wet season was too wet, and the glare of the sun after harvest season was too scorching to be at all pleasant; and so in four years from the time of his arrival he started eastward, landing in Maine in 1864. He bought a farm in Charleston, upon which he lived four years, selling out in favor of one in Dover, working that one year. A chance as foreman of a large fancy stock farm at Upton, Mass., owned by D. W. Batchelor, boot manufacturer, induced him to sell again. His uncle, Joel Doore, having about this time got settled in this new “Garden of the West,” wrote him to come; and thus, in 1870, he came to Pleasant Grove Township. He bought two eighties – the southeast of section 29 and the southwest of section 28. When he came here nothing but a log cabin stood on the place for a house, and from this, in a storm a few years afterward, the roof was blown, nearly crushing Mr. and Mrs. Beal and Mr. George Beal’s family. About this time things looked gloomy and lonesome enough. By hard, honest toil and a practical mind he has today one of the best and pleasantest homes in this portion of Floyd County. From a log cabin he now has a house of all modern comforts and all the conveniences to be found in any farm house. From a straw and turf stable he has a commodious barn 60 x 32; crops about eighty acres annually. He was initiated into Olive Branch Lodge, No. 124, of A. F. & A. M., at Charleston, Maine, in 1865, and is now a member of Alpha Lodge, of Greene. He married Carrie Batchelor, of Dover, Maine, April 14, 1866. Miss Batchelor was daughter of Nathan and Olive (Gerry) Batchelor, who are long residents of that town. Mrs. Beal was one of the first in the ranks of the W. C. T. U., being its charter Treasurer.

Charles F. Beck Pages 845 – 846

Was born in Greene Township, Gallia County, O., Mary 18, 1845. He was the sixth in a family of thirteen. His parents are Jacob and Sophia Beck, now living in Riverton, whose biographies may be found in the contents of that township. Charles F., like the majority of boys in those early days, received but a common school education, but by a wise use of that, together with shrewd powers of observation, has mastered all obstacles, so far as general knowledge and business laws, and the right and wrong in the political economy of the county goes. He was at home during his minority, and until his twenty-fourth year, when he took unto himself a wife, marrying Miss Viola Reynolds, daughter of S. L. Reynolds, formerly of this township, but more recently of Greene. Miss Reynolds had the honor of being the first teacher in School house No. 1, and perhaps in the district. About the date of his marriage he bought his present home – a farm of ninety acres, on section 8. To them one child, a daughter, has been born. Mr. Beck crops about eighty acres on his own place, and some forty more on an adjacent section. Inasmuch as we found Mr. Beck to be one of Floyd’s earliest settlers, we have used many of the facts thus gleaned in the body of the work, and for which we give credit.

John Frederick Christian Bicknese Pages 846 – 849

Born in Erichshagen, Wolpe County, Kingdom of Hanover, Dec. 17, 1815, was a son of Conrad and Marie (Lubbers) Bicknese, and the eldest son of six children. He lived at home until his fifteenth year, when he worked for a year and a half in a hotel. Then for two years for a dyer, when he entered into a contract to learn the trade. In August 1838, he took out a passport, dated Aug. 30, 1838. In those days a passport book had to be obtained and each night to be left with the police until further movements demanded its possession. His movements were about as follows: starting from Erichshagen, he staid first at Celle; from Celle he went to Bremen, from Bremen to Oldenburg. At each place all travelers are examined to see if they have been vaccinated, and if they have traveling money -$5 being requisite before proceeding. From Oldenburg he went to Varel, then to Aurish, then to Burgsteinfurth, where he worked nearly two months. After this to Osnedrick, then to Wildeshausen, then to Buckeburg; from here to Hildeshein; from here to Braunschweig, then to Grimma, Saxony, then to Leipsig; from here to Dresden; from here he went to Breslau, Prussia; from here to Lignitz, then to a part of Prussia Poland, Zduny; from here to Kozmin; from here to Thoren, then to Elbing via Grauding and Marenwerder; from Elbing to Soldan; from here to Hohenstein; here he worked three months. Then to Konigsberg; from here to Danzig, Prussia, again; from here to Stolp, then to Coslin, then to Colberg, then back to Stolp, where he secured five weeks’ work. From here to Landsberg, then to Rueenwale; here he worked fourteen weeks. From here to Soldin, then to Stettin. During this time he was traveling on foot, and here, having sore feet, he had to be still a few days. Then to Stralsund; from there to Demmin, from there to Paswalk, from there to Naubrandenburg, from there to Frankfort-on-the-Oder, then back to Breslau; from there Leobschuetz, then to Hirschberg, then to Zittan, then to Freiberg, from there to Chemmitz. There he was fortunate enough to find work for one year and a half, where he had charge of forty-five men. After this, desiring more experience, he resigned and went to Erfurth, working about five weeks; then to Gotha, then to Minningen, then to Coburg, then to Bavaria, Culmbach, from there to Bayruth, then to Schnabelwid, then to Nurnberg, then to Ausbach, then to Westertrudingen, then to Koslinger, then to Donanworth, then to Augsburg, then to Schwabmunchen, then to Kaufburen, then to Kempten, then to Iesny, Wurtemburg, then to Leutkirch, then to Stuttgart, then to Nalen; there he worked fourteen weeks. From there to Gmund; there he again worked fourteen weeks. From there he went to Tubengen, then to Balingen, then to Schafhausen then passing over the border of Wurtenburg, to Gallen, Switzerland; there he worked fourteen weeks. From there to Berne, then to Lucerne; from here back to Germany, Baden Baden, to Freiburg, then to Menheim; from there to Wurzburg, then to Bamburg; from there to Cumbach, then to Hof, then to Griez, then to Altenburg, then to Hildeshim, and from there to where he was born, arriving home Dec. 8, 1842, making a journey of four years and four months. This has been taken from the passport book. It also shows about what the German journeyman has to pass through to gain that perfection in his trade that brings demand for his labor. He worked at his trade about one year at home, then from Bremen sailed to Baltimore, landing in America, Aug. 18, 1844. From Baltimore he went to Wilkinsburg, Pa.; worked seven years and a half in the Baltimore coal mine, Alex. Gray being proprietor. From here to Dane County, Wis., in 1852. While in Wilkinsburg he married Frances Hogstien. He lived in Dane County fourteen years and a half. Then came to this township, Nov. 30, 1866. His children are – Clemerce L., Mary C., John Francis, Bernard, Katy, Frank, Joseph, Dora and Lena. His wife died in March 1878. He owns 405 acres, and crops: of corn, eighty-five acres; of oats, forty-two and one half acres; of wheat, eighty-six acres; tame grass, fourteen acres.

John Brisco Pages 849 – 851

One of the earliest pioneers of Iowa, and one who has seen nothing but frontier life since his early boyhood in Shelby County, Ky., until now, was born of good old Kentucky stock in Shelby County. His parents moved from there to Monroe County, Ind., when he was a small boy. His reminiscences of Indiana or Hoosier pioneer life; of their log cabins without a scrap of iron; their primitive customs as a whole, are very interesting. He lived at home, assisting his father to carry on the farm until his nineteenth year, when he went to work on the river, piloting the old styled flat boat between Louisville, Ky., and New Orleans. It was a life of intense hardship. One of these boats, floating with the stream, took fifteen days or more to do the journey. The boats, when they arrived, were sold for the lumber in them, though some of them have been brought up the stream by means of ropes and horses. In 1843 he married Adeline Head, of Monroe County. Her father emigrated from “New Virginia” when she was but two years of age. Their names were Josiah and Lydia Head. Both died when she was quite young. Mrs. Brisco is a grand example of what our early pioneer women were, having endured privations and hardships with her husband, working in the field as in the house, being a “better shot” with the frontiersman’s rifle than the majority of them themselves, and lastly having raised a family of fourteen children, the greater portion living today to bless the mother and father from whom they have inherited sound constitutions and pure blood. Mr. Brisco, today is healthy and vigorous. Upon Mr. Brisco’s marriage they moved to Kosciusko County in the fall of 1847, and from there moved to Allamakee, living there until 1861, when he moved to Riverton. In Allamakee County he moved to Rossville, where he bought 200 acres – two besides himself living in that section at that time, and laid out the town, now Rossville. He carried on the farm for three years, then moved to town and went into the manufacturing of plows and blacksmithing with David Skinner, and remained in the company seven years, when he sold out and formed a partnership with Mr. Ross and built a steam grist mill, which he ran about one year, returning to the farm. During the time he ran the manufacturing of plows he went into and established a shop at Oronoko, on Zumbro River, running it one year and sold out. During this time he also made two trips to Pike’s Peak, it being the time of the gold fever, crossing the plains four times with an ox team; the first time there was a company of sixty men and thirty wagons; the second time twenty-seven men, one woman and sixteen wagons. During the last trip they made a halt at Denver, the Indians being on the war path. At the time of their settlement in Iowa, bears and game were abundant. Mrs. Brisco has seen five bears at one time. The pigs had to be kept in the house; and being afraid they would molest the children, Mrs. Brisco learned to use the rifle. Some of her shots rival the stories of the frontier marksman. Her husband once wagered a pair of pants against a new dress that she could not kill over four or five partridges or wood pheasants at a shot; but her scoring thirty-one birds with every shot won the dress. Few women in the history of frontier life have equaled this. Squirrels and wild turkey were doomed if she could see as much as their heads. She has killed two deer. In 1870 he bought a farm of ninety acres in Pleasant Grove and lived there four years; then sold it and bought the one of 160 acres, where he now resides. Their children are – Prier L., Lydia M. and Elizabeth Jane, born in Monroe County, Ind.; Jeremiah and Harriet M., born in Kosciusko County, Ind.; Matilda I. (the first child born in the county), John L. (died when three years old), Emmie L. (Died in infancy), Josiah, Clementine, and Robinson M., born in Allamakee County, Ia; Charles C., Francis U. and Walter M. born in Riverton, Floyd County.

Wesley Brownell Page 851 – 852

Was born in Delaware County, N. Y., Oct. 16, 1830; received a common school education; remained with his parents until about twenty-one years of age, when he commenced to do for himself, by working for his neighbors. At the age of twenty-four he bantered a chum of his own age to respond to the call from Kansas, for settlers from the East. Though his friend declined, he packed his trunk and started for the broad prairie land of the West. He spent the first year in Illinois, and in 1855 he came to Iowa. An incident we here relate illustrates the expeditiousness required upon the part of the settler in order to get land, on account of the fast inflowing population. Mr. Brownell arrived in this county Dec. 15; the Government land office at Decorah opened on the 20th. He commenced improvements on 160 acres, section 24, Riverton, now Pleasant Grove Township; filed his papers for pre-emption in the meantime, securing the land on the 20th. Upon this land he resided until 1868, when he sold and moved to Mitchell County and purchased a farm and made that his home two years. At the expiration of this term he returned to Floyd County, and farmed land on shares three years. In 1873 he purchased the farm of 160 acres where he still resides, section 36, Pleasant Grove. He crops about 125 acres; corn, seventy; oats, thirty-five; balance tame grass; keeps about twelve head cattle, four horses and from fifteen to one hundred hogs. Has always escaped the hog cholera till last year, when he lost seventy-five head. During the war Mr. Brownell was drafted as second to a drafted man; there being only one man drafted in the county. Fortunately for Mr. Brownell, the man was accepted upon examination. The township organized an insurance company for the benefit of those who might be drafted. Their first papers proving inefficient they drew up new ones. They all signed the new ones except this Mr. Wilcox, who happened to be the only man drafted in the township. Mr. Brownell was married in Bradford, Chickasaw County, Ia., April 21, 1961, to Miss Jane Adams a native of Canada. Their family consists of five children – Elva A., Martin C., Minnie O., William I. and Robert S. He is a member of the order of Freemasons. Is a member of the Baptist church, and has been a Republican ever since the party had existence. Voted for Fremont in 1856 and was previously an Abolitionist. While a citizen of Riverton Township he held the office of Assessor seven years, and was County Supervisor some three terms; was Township Clerk one year previous. Since becoming a citizen of Pleasant Grove he was elected Assessor, which position he has held for the past three years. Besides being a member of the School Board the greater part of the time, while residing in both townships, several years, he acted as Secretary. Mr. Brownell cast the first vote in this township. Mr. Brownell stands high in the esteem of his fellow towns people, as a man whose word is as good as his bond; such, too, is the reputation given the Brownells in the history of Delaware County, N. Y.

Allan J. Doore Pages 852 – 853

Son of Joel and Sarah (Cushing) Doore, whose sketch joins this, was born in Atkinson, Piscataquis County, Me., May 19, 1844. He came to this township the first year of its organization. He received an academic education; taught several terms of school winters, and helped his father on the farm summers. His idea of Western prospects have been quite full realized. He married Alice M. Lockwood, daughter of J. C. Lockwood, of this township, May 19, 1872. Their children are – Raymond L., Allan W., Harry C., and Grace M. He has 240 acres of land in Scott Township, sections 32 and 33. Mr. Doore, like his father, is a thrifty farmer, bringing Maine pluck and energy. The attraction of the prairie to the farmer-bred New England are great. Mr. Doore when first arriving in this locality thought he saw, at least,: "easy agriculture” compared with that among the rocks and stumps of Maine, and wrote his father to this effect. He had no intention of staying when he left home, the object being in the main to escort his sister, Mrs. Rudolph Young, to her home. The surprise he had, together with the great difference between the soil of the Pine Tree State and that of the Hawkeye, made him form the resolution of staying, and buying a quarter section, immediately sent word to his parents to come West. In two years his persuasions brought the “old folks”. Father and son live in happiness and comfort together. He has 225 acres under cultivation: 100 acres of corn; sixty, rye; sixty-five, oats. Has gone into the bee culture, having at present fifteen hives.

Joel Doore Pages 853 – 854

Or “Uncle Joel,” as he is familiarly called by nearly every one living in the “Maine settlement,” came to Pleasant Grove Township in 1869, at the urgent solicitation of his son and daughter – now Mrs. Rudolph Young of Verndale, Minn. He has been a member of the Methodist Episcopal church for many years. The old style Scotch practice, so eloquently described in Robert Burns’ “Cotter’s Saturday Night,: seemed peculiarly appropriate to Mr. Doore’s whole-souled, yet simplicity of, character, and the morning worship thus conducted will ever be remembered by the writer of this sketch. Mr. Doore was born in Dover, Piscataquis County, Maine, Nov. 7, 1813. He was a son of Joel and Hannah Doore, one of Piscataquias’ early settlers. The family consisted of eight sons and three daughters. Of course in those early days, even East, schools were in a rude and primitive state, in consequence of which no one received but a common school education, and education, like many other branches of vital importance to the development of character, being dependent on a mans mind, his powers of self restraint, observation, integrity of charter and purpose. He has always followed the farm as a means of livelihood, with the exception of one year, which he spent in California in 1849 – ’50. He married Miss Sarah Cushing, daughter of James and Nancy Cushing. The names of the children born to them are – Eliza N., James N., Nancy C., Isley O., Allen J., and Pauline S. Eliza N. married Charles Ramsdell and is living directly opposite her father; his two sons, Isley O., and James N., were of the first of those brave volunteers who left the comforts of their homes, their social and domestic pleasure, and who severed for the time the ties which linked them to their families and friends, to rally for the defense of their country and the institutions under which they had been permitted to enjoy these comforts, pleasure and affections; to face the stern realities of grim-visaged war; to endure the hardships and privations of the field; to inhale the pestilential emanations from Southern swamps; to languish in sickness and pain, and to find solitary and unknown graves where neither father, nor mother, nor brother, nor sister could come to drop affection’s tears. And thus they died, and lie with thousands of unknown and unmarked graves, the former near New Orleans, where he died of fever, November 1862; the latter on Ship Island, of the same disease, July 17, 1862. But their patriotism and their sufferings, in the hearts of their towns’ people, and on the Roll of Honor, shall be an enduring monument. Pauline S. married Clifton Huckins, M. D., son of Deacon Huckins. Mr. Huckins was the first and only physician in Pleasant Grove. Mr. Doore moved from Maine in 1869, buying 160 acres in section 32. He brought with him Maine ways and economy – the wholesome teachings of thrifty, broad-minded parents, as all New Englanders of the past generation, who reared large families among the rocks and forests and the hills of the East, were. From these teachings he has been able to meet the world in a practical and yet pleasant way, and to have accomplished in these few years of Western experiences what many of our more Western residents, with an easier notion of life and methods, have been years longer in doing. He has fine buildings, a barn about 40 x 60, and his manner of husbandry evinces plainer than words its practicability. Politically he is a Republican, and when a resident of Maine held the various town offices at different periods. He crops this year about forty acres of spring wheat, twenty acres of oats, fifty acres of corn; has a large number of horses, and about fifty pigs.

Andrew A. Egnew Pages 854 – 855

Was born in Rockport, Spencer County, Ind., July 18, 1841. His parents were James and Elizabeth (Varner) Egnew of Kentucky. His father followed farming for a livelihood. Of a family of fourteen, Andrew A. was tenth. He lived at home during his minority, enlisting in the Fourth Indiana Cavalry, Company K, Captain C. C. Mason commanding, a month succeeding his minority. He was engaged the first six months in hunting, running down the Kentucky guerrillas, Mason, the rebel, among them. After this he was in Rosencrans’ advance, going through the ever to be remembered battle of Chickamauga. After the retreat of the troops from Chickamauga this company went into the march after Wheeler, when he crossed the Tennessee, after the Federal supply trains. After this his regiment was ordered as the advance, doing reconnoitering and surveying duty near Fayettesville. While thus engaged, doing picket duty, a mini-ball entered the arm through the inferior portion of the triceps muscle, two or three inches below the articulation of the humerus with the clavicle, and passing just beneath the bone, emerged near the center of the biceps muscles, lacerating these most important appliances of nature’s handiwork in a fearful manner, resulting in an almost total paralysis of the arm and a withering of the hand, the latter rigidly contracted. The ball passing out of his arm entered his right side, making quite a serious though flesh wound. After this he was transferred to the veteran reserve corps, not receiving his discharge until the February of 1865. He is at present drawing a small pension – a pension much too small. After his discharge he taught school for ten or twelve years about his home, assisting on the farm during vacations. He was married April 9, 1869 to Cynthia M. Starkweather. Their children are – Sydney C, and Minnie R. Mr. Egnew lived in Spencer County until March 1877, when he moved to Butler County, Ia.; lived there three years, then moved to Marble Rock, residing there one year; from there to this pleasant locality, section 8, township 94 north, range 16 west. Although we cannot claim Mr. Egnew among Floyd’s soldiers, we can claim the same spirit for him as imbued their breasts – to fight, suffer and die for the preservation of the Union and the honor of the stars and stripes.

James Fiddick Page 855

An Englishman by descent, was born in Simonstown, Cape of Good Hope, Africa, April 1857. His parents’ names were James and Elizabeth Fiddick. His mother was born in Cornwall County, England in 1826; was married in 1852, and moved to Cape of Good Hope in 1853. Mr. Fiddick was for many years connected with the civil service at Simonstown, living there thirteen years. Mr. Fiddick died in Cornwall, Nov. 18, 1873. Their children, born at the Cape, were Pricilla J., Richard, James, William, Laura J., Ellen E. and Emma A. Thomas and Bertha M. were born in England. James, the third of the children, emigrated to Rockford, Ill., when his mother and family came, in 1874. They lived in Rockford five years, moving to Pleasant Grove Township, to section 19, where all the family are comfortably settled. He married Rebecca Pooley in 1881, sister of John B. Pooley, a near neighbor. He is cropping about 100 acres. Mr. Fiddick is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church at Greene, and a most exemplary man.

Lewis Forthun Pages 855 – 856

A native of Lyster, Southern Norway, was born in the year 1837, and was the youngest and fourth son of Knut and Carrie Forthun. He lived with his parents until his nineteenth year, receiving such education as was to be had in Norway’s common schools, when the desire of adventure took possession of him, the wonders of America being the unknown magnet. Bidding goodbye to father and mother, sister and brothers, and his native land, he eventually reached Dane County, Wis., after many interesting experiences. As always happens to emigrants to whom the English language is foreign. Here he lived one year, moving into Rock County, where he farmed for six years. Here it was that he assisted in setting out the first acre of tobacco set out in this county – a branch of farming that now is extensively carried on. From here he moved into Crawford County, and from here, in 1864 he enlisted in the Eleventh Wisconsin Infantry, Company E, being engaged in the memorable battle before Mobile, where he was wounded, a mini-ball striking him directly in the mouth. The eagerness with which the majority of men of foreign birth, and in come cases, of newly arrived emigrants, watched the late war, and enlisted when calls for more men were made, is a fact remarkable in history. After his return in 1865, he married Mary E. Joslyn, daughter of Marsena and Mary A. Joslyn, late of Pleasant Grove Township, now residing in Greene, Butler County. In 1866 he moved to Pleasant Grove Township, and bought an eighty, or the Joe Ripley farm, in what was then Ripley’s Grove. Also at the same time he bought an adjoining eighty of Washington Young, moving into a shanty built by Mr. Young a few years before. The work at first, as was the case with all new farms in the timber, was that of grubbing, but by assiduous labors it has brought the acreage of available land from a few to those of his large farm of today, he cropping over 100 acres of corn and oats. A few years ago he bought another eighty adjoining, east of the last, upon which he has built convenient farm buildings. Mr. Forthun has been active in politics, and has been chosen to most of the township offices, at different intervals, and for the past three years has held that of County Supervisor, of which today he is Chairman. Three children have been born to him – Jessie May, Horace Orville Wallace, and Walter S. Much credit is due Mr. Forthun as member of the Board of Supervisors for the rapid construction of the present court house and also as a man, who coming to a new county, in a few years mastered its language, customs and politics so as to be one of the leading spirits.

William Grierish Pages 856 – 857

Was born in Mecklenburg, Germany in 1834, under the Grand Duke Frederick Frantz. His parents were Frederick and Lottie Grierish, and had six children, William being the youngest. He lived at home, working on a farm till his nineteenth year, when in 1854, he emigrated to America, landing first in New York, staying eight months, and eventually coming to Milwaukee, Wis., where he remained a short time, and then went to Waukesha County and worked on a farm till 1866, when he went to Columbia County and staid three years, finally coming to Pleasant Grove Township, Floyd County, where he still resides, settling on 120 acres of wild land. He now has 200 acres of fine land, on section 25, under a good state of cultivation. Has in crop forty acres of oats, twenty-five of wheat, sixty of corn, seven of barley and twenty of tame grass. He owns forty head of cattle, nine horses and sixty hogs. He was married in 1861 in Waukesha, Wis., to Ann Bullen, a daughter of Edwin and Sarah (Osborn) Bullen, natives of England. They had a family of eleven children. Ann being the third child. They came to America in 1854 with a family of eight. Mr. and Mrs. Grierish have two children – Edward W. and Albert J., aged twenty and eighteen, both born in Waukesha, Wis. Edward W. is Secretary of the Blue Ribbon Lodge. His buildings are on the east side of his farm; the house is a story and a half, the front part being 16 x 20 with a wing 14 x 22. His granary is 18 x 28 and fourteen feet high, with stone basement underneath for horses; has an addition to the granary for four horses; has a cow barn 22 x 30, sixteen feet high and holds nineteen cows, with a hay-mow over head; has a corn crib 22 x 32, with corn on one side and hogs on the other; has a windmill, the Union Star, sixty feet high.

Edgar M. Joslyn Pages 857 – 858

Was born in Judah, Green County, Wis., in 1852. His parents, who moved from Worchester County, Mass., are Marsena and Mary A. Joslyn. They have always taken an active part in the promotion of all religious movements. Their early married life was amid the noise and unhealthy odors of an Eastern cotton mill, to escape which they came West, moving from Green County to Floyd in 1865, thus being residents before it was an organized township, separate from Union and Riverton. In other portions of this township history will be found an account of Mr. Marsena Joslyn, as having been Leader of the first class, and Superintendent of the first Sabbath school in the township. He is a public-spirited citizen, and is always to be found on the side where justice reigns. Of late years he has moved to Greene, his son Edgar running the farm. The log cabin yet standing on the home place was the first one they built, an old fashioned pioneer’s cabin. Edgar M. Joslyn married Zilpha S. Robinson, of Hampton, Ia., in January 1881. Mr. Joslyn has also been useful to his fellow townsmen as a teacher of their schools for several terms. And while the “old folks” are enjoying the quiet of a retired life in so pleasant a village as Greene, it must be a comfort to know that the “old place” is still running on in the hands of the family. Mr. Joslyn’s sister, Mary E., is the wife of Lewis Forthun, a neighbor, and the present incumbent of the Chairman of the Board of County Supervisors.

George F. Lambert Pages 858 – 859

Was born in Dover, Piscataquis County, Me., June 7, 1838; was a son of Paul and Maribah (Fish) Lambert. Their family consisted of eight children – Lanson, Hiram F., Samantha, Nancy, Julia, Ruby, George F., and Prudence F., all having passed to the better land but Hiram F. (now living in St. Charles Township) and George F. He lived at home during his minority and until his twenty-fourth year, when in August 1862, he enlisted in Company I, Twenty-second Maine Volunteer Infantry, Colonel Girard commanding. Went into camp at Bangor about five weeks; breaking camp, they went via rail to Washington, camping in the heights; was in camp there about one week. From here the regiment went to Newport News; was there until the 25th of November. Then went via steamer “S. R. Spaulding” to Baton Rouge, and was put under Gen. N. P. Banks in his expedition against Baton Rouge. While at Baton Rouge he was taken sick with the dumb ague, as many thousands were, and went into the hospital, being off duty about three weeks. Then in March was taken with the measles. About 100 of the men were sick with them at the same time, and all were unable to do duty until after their discharge in August. In August 1863, were mustered out at Camp Pope, Bangor. Mr. Lambert has a very narrow escape from dropsy. After his return he went back to farming, and lived there until his thirty-eighth year. He was married in Dover, Sept. 15, 1861, to Mary E. Page, daughter of Samuel J. and Susan H. (Goss) Page. In 1876 they sold out in Maine and moved to Pleasant Grove Township, northeast section 29, buying of his brother, J. F. Lambert. The grove about his home was set in 1877 and 1878. We find Mr. Lambert’s home typical of the comfortable New England home – the pleasantest of any in the world, especially to us Yankees. Mrs. Lambert was in the first movement toward the furthering of the cause of temperance, being the first Secretary of the W. C. T. U. of this township, auxiliary to the county; and has been Vice-President for two years. Three children have been born to them – Laura M., born in Dover, Me., Aug. 15, 1862; Guy C., born in Dover, Me., Jan. 21, 1868; and Bessie A., born in Pleasant Grove Township, April 28, 1879. Mr. Lambert crops nearly his whole farm; oats, thirty acres; corn, ninety-three acres; wheat, eight acres; tame grass, fifteen acres. He has five cattle, five horses and 200 hogs, the largest number in the township. Mr. and Mrs. Lambert and eldest daughter are members of the Baptist church at South Dover, they having been members for twenty-five years. Mrs. Lambert, mother of George F., came West with Mr. Lambert and lived her four years in her son’s home.

James P. Lockwood Pages 859 – 860

One of the honored veterans of the late war was born of good New England blood. His father, Seth Lockwood, whose interesting sketch appears here, and as will be seen was a native of staid old Connecticut. James P. was born in Greene County, Nov. 19, 1816, being second son of Seth and Diantha Lockwood. He lived with his parents until in his fourteenth year, when he turned to the state of manhood – “looking out for himself”. Between this period and that of his coming West he followed various avocations that would bring him an honest penny. At first he worked on the Croton Water-works about New York City; then in the lumber business, and also learned the joiner’s trade, working at it at different times, until his moving to Floyd County, in Syracuse and Rochester for several years. He helped to build the propeller “Indian Chief,” after the completion of which he went up through the Welland Canal, just completed, and so on to Milwaukee, Wis., in which State he remained for several years, and from which he enlisted. While on the lake the propeller struck a ledge of rocks, giving him a touch of old ocean experience – his first and last. He lived in Detroit a few weeks only; and a year or longer in Milwaukee. He helped to build the depots along the route of the Prairie du Chien Railroad – that road, the civil engineers of which made but one important mistake, as the story went those days. When asked by the President their opinion of the road replied “that it was all right only they might have got one more curve in it as well as not”. From railroad work he went to Menasha (Sweet Water), Northern Wisconsin, at the out-let of Lake Winnebago, where he was in season to help build the first frame house in that town. He also helped to build two sawmills, dam and flumes, and ran each a year or so. His experiences in this town were not of a profitable nature, working there at the hardest kind of pioneer labor for five years, and not having scarcely money enough to get fairly out of the town with. His next residence was at Union, Wis.; from there to McGregor’s Landing, where he built the dry docks; from McGregor’s he moved to Racine, working in the works of the J. I. Case Threshing Machine Company. It was while at Racine he enlisted in the Twenty-second Wisconsin Infantry, being in service two years, or until his health failed him. He was detailed as hospital nurse, and afterward given full charge of a hospital from that time out. These duties are always very arduous. Some incidents connected with the duties made them extremely so. For one instance among many, we relate that while at Danville, Ky., at a rumor that Gen. John Morgan’s fiends were on a raid in that locality, the whole force, 15,000 strong, broke camp in search for them, leaving Mr. Lockwood for four days in sole charge of 150 sick men. This is what ruined his health; and awhile afterward he returned to Wisconsin, bringing with him all the sick he could, landing them at Chicago. After regaining his health he threw up a pension and re-enlisted in the 100 day’s enlistment, going into Company F., Thirty-ninth Wisconsin Regiment, and for which he holds a certificate of the President’s thanks for honorable service. After his discharge he was foreman of Racine & Mississippi Railroad; from this work he moved to Pleasant Grove in 1866, where he has since resided. Mr. Lockwood is a man of good judgement, out-spoken, but of honorable intentions and purposes. He was married in Menasha, Wis., in 1847, to Eliza Atwood. She died in 1857, in Chickasaw County, Iowa, leaving four children. In 1860 Mr. Lockwood was married in Racine, Wis., to Candace M. Salisbury, a native of Delaware County, N. Y., as were also her parents, April 29, 1870. Mrs. Lockwood died in Pleasant Grove, leaving a son, two years of age – Charles Erskine, who is residing with his father.

J. C. Lockwood Page 860

Was born in Smithfield, Madison County, N. Y., May 15, 1828. Lived there until nine years of age, when his parents moved to Hinsdale, Cattaraugus County, N. Y. While living there he was engaged in railroading, canaling and farming. Was engaged in the civil engineer corps in the construction of the Erie Railroad, and in railroading in general for seven years on the Canada, Great Western & Detroit. Was married to Mary L. Farwell, of Hinsdale. Seven children have been born to them, five of whom are now living – Alice M., Anna Katharine, Carrie M., Edith M., and Mattie. He moved to Pleasant Grove Township in November 1868, buying 200 acres. Mr. Lockwood is at present Justice of the Peace and was elected County Supervisor in 1874.

Seth Lockwood Pages 860 – 861

One of the oldest citizens in the county was born in Goshen, Litchfield County, Ct., May 7, 1793. At two years of age his father moved to Windham, N. Y., now Lexington, Greene County. Lived there until 1820. Was married there to Diantha Thompson, the 6th day of May, 1813, who died in Madison County, July 17, 1824, leaving four children. In November 1814 he cast his first vote for Governor, in 1817 his first vote for President, James Monroe being the candidate. Mr. Lockwood has never missed a vote since his first of 1814. Married Hepsy Boyden, of Smithfield, Madison County, in 1825, who bore him three children; she died in 1871. From Greene County he removed to Madison, Feb. 28, 1820, living there till 1837; then moved to Hinsdale, Cattaraugus County, May 21, 1837, and lived there thirty years, removing to Floyd County in November 1868. The children by his first wife were – Eli T., James P., George M., and Sarah Ann; by his second wife – Mary F., J. C., and F. E. Of the four children of first wife but one is living – James P., of Pleasant Grove Township. In 1825 Mr. L. read law with Huntington & Palmer, of Peterborough, N. Y., for three years, and practiced until the new code of New York went into effect in 1842. He was justice of the sessions for two terms in Cattaraugus County. For reminiscences, Mr. Lockwood distinctly remembers the extraordinary eclipse of June 6, 1809, when for about two hours fowls went to roost. He has seen the ground and fences white with snow the 4th of July. Mr. Lockwood has always taken an active interest in the political issues of the county; voted the Democratic ticket until 1856 – or the Kansas question – when, according to his views, the Democrat party receding from true Democracy, he voted the Republican ticket, when John D. Fremont was candidate. Any one being acquainted with that question will remember the cause for change.

James F. McRoberts Pages 861 – 862

Was born in parish of Strathdon, county of Aberdeen, Scotland, Feb. 9, 1820. His parents were James and Ellen (Beattie) McRoberts, natives of same parish. Lived at home during minority, working on the farm of his mother, his father dying before he was a year old. Their family consisted of six children, James F. being the youngest. He then left for America, landing at Quebec in August 1841. From there he went to Hamilton, Canada West. He lived there until the war closed, when he moved to Coffin’s Grove, Masonville, Iowa; lived in town about two years, then moved to Pleasant Grove about 1868. He was married in Hamilton to Miss Sarah Allen, who died there. Their children are – Martha, Ann, John, Isabel, James H., David (deceased), Alexander and Elizabeth.

John Perry Pages 862 – 863

Who, without doubt, owns the largest number of acres in the township; who has the most convenient and complete set of farm buildings; who, undoubtedly, has the largest acreage of corn and small grain in this vacinity, and probably in Northern Iowa, and who earned it all by honest toil, was born in the town of Sempronius, Cayuga County, N. Y., in the year 1830 He was a son of hard working parents, who, in their turn, transmitted their zeal for industry and enterprise to their son. His early life was spent on the farm. After his farm experience, he engaged with a canal company as canal boy, and followed this for some years. His parents moved from New York State to Cherry Valley, Winnebago County, Ill., thus giving him an early taste of frontier life. He married Miss Jane Toogood in 1852. Her parents’ names are Sydney and Olive (Slade) Toogood, formerly of Tompkins County, N. Y. Mr. Toogood moved to Rockford over forty years ago, and helped to plat and build the town. Is now a resident of Webster City, Iowa. Mr. Perry’s parents’ names are Oziras and Eliza (Merchant) Perry, now of Cherry Valley, Ill. Mr. Perry left Cherry Valley in January 1855 with his family and household goods and all paraphernalia of an emigrant’s equipment – a pair of cattle, a covered wagon, cooking utensils, etc., and a cow in train behind. A year previous, however, he had been into Floyd County prospecting, and purchased 200 acres of what is now section 33, township 95 north, 15 west, or what was set apart for the school lands. He had bought this land of David Dyas, yet living in Riverton, paying him about $5 per acres, and also some $4 bonus for the privilege of living in the timber, its protection seeming indispensable. We believe, however, that this price included the improvements (?) and the crops. It is certain that Mr. Dyas immediately bought Government land for $1.25, the price he paid for this. The opinion of its being impossible to stand the bleakness of an open prairie has long since exploded. Mr. Perry’s journey here was one of old fashioned pioneer experiences. Reaching the Mississippi River, they, by driving one ox over at a time, drawing the wagon by hand, and dragging the cow on her side, succeeded in passing safely over, the river breaking up the next morning. In Dubuque he bought provisions and started for Floyd via Independence, working the trip in three days; his wife staged it to Independence, then came in on the ox cart, as all other pioneer women had before. We think the first year in the log house must have been a lonely one, especially when her husband was gone a week to Independence or McGregor’s Landing, for grist and provisions. Pork being $1.40 per hundred weight, wheat 20 cents per bushel, and it taking a full week to go and come, an idea of the profit in farming can be had. And these experiences have made Mr. Perry a firm believer in railroads and their advantages. Floyd County as he saw it at first, and at the advantages of milling privileges at least seventy-five miles distant. Charles City, styled Freeman Postoffice, had three log houses, one being used as the Postoffice and general store, the others were occupied by John Blunt and Harvey Kellogg. It was the next spring that Joseph Kelley started a sawmill. His neighbors were E. C. Wilcox, Sanford Ripley, Samuel Clark, John Porter and Hamilton Clark; these were residents between his place and Nashua, though at that date Nashua was unknown. He lived there about eighteen years, selling to Charles Arthur, and moved to this township where, at different purchases, he has bought 960 acres, his present farm. This by no means indicates the acreage of his possessions in the county, nor of that in Dakota. When he bought his present home place there were no buildings thereon. Today the best in the township are his. Not a house was in sight, and his good wife thought of a third pioneer experience. But it was not long before neighbors in this instance were welcomed. Mr. Perry is cropping on his home place about 800 acres, 560 of corn and about 200 acres of oats. To Mr. and Mrs. Perry have been born six children, names as follows: Edgar R., Leander O., Oscar J., George E., Carrie L., and Edbert D., all being industrious temperate and respected young men and women.

Orlando Powers Pages 863 – 864

A gentleman of keen discernment and practical worth in any community, and who by hard labor has today a fine fame with necessary requirements by which farming is made profitable, was born in La Chute, Canada, Aug. 7, 1846. He lived with his parents until about his eighteenth year when he came West and into the States. His parents’ names were Orlando and Lydia (Hutchins) Powers, both natives of La Chute. Mr. Powers first came to Black Earth County, and moved from there to Iowa in 1870. He was married in 1869 to Lucretia Angel. Their children are Edwin, Alice and Annie. His step-children are Charles and Lizzie Angel. Mr. Powers has a farm of 320 acres; is cropping about 125 acres, divided somewhat as follows: Sixty-five acres of oats, twenty acres of tame grass, and the greater portion of the remainder of corn. Since the failure of wheat, he has taken the practical view of the situation, which was to raise more hay and keep more livestock, consequently he owns 110 head of cattle, ten horses and 100 hogs. We bespeak for Mr. Powers a successful future.

George Pringle Page 864

Was born July 3, 1853, near Detroit, Mich. His parents, William and Elizabeth Pringle, moved from there to Butler County, Ia., in 1855, and bought eighty acres of land from the Government. This was when that section was new, with but few settlers, and very few improvements. He and his brothers, Robert and James, lived at home until their mother died, when the family broke up, and he looked about for himself, moving into Pleasant Grove and working for I. P. Dean by the month. He bought eighty acres on section 28, and married Georgie A. Smith, daughter of H. W. Smith, Pleasant Grove. Their children are George N., who died in infancy, and Allen J.

David Reams Page 864

One of Pleasant Grove’s most practical farmers, was born in Starr County, Ohio, June 7, 1836. His parents were George and Margaret Reams, both natives of Pennsylvania. Mr. Reams was reared on a farm, and has always been an industrious and hard-working man. He lived at home until his marriage, at the age of twenty-seven. He then moved to Fillmore County, Minn. From there he moved to Pleasant Grove Township. In 1862 he married his present wife, to whom he owes much of his present prosperous condition, she being a practical farmer in every sense of the word, and one who will always be a helpmate, a woman whose advise is sound, and who has health and strength to follow up what she advises by a willing and helping hand. Such women are not to be found in the crowded and fashionable marts, but where pluck and common sense is the capital in trade. Mrs. Reams’ maiden name was Mary A. Brisco. Mr. Reams is farming at present fifty-five acres upon his own land, and sixty-five acres on land adjacent.

Henry W. Smith Pages 864 – 865

Was born in what was called No. 11, in Somerset County, Maine, Oct. 28, 1831. He was a son of William J. and Susan (Foster) Smith, born natives of Maine. Their family consisted of five children, three boys and two girls, of which Henry A. was the eldest. He lived at home until his twenty-second year, and in his twenty-third year he purchased a farm in Sebec, Piscataquis County, and farmed it about four years. About this time he married Plooma Cushing, of Atkinson, same county, her parents being James and Nancy Cushing; their family consisted of nine daughters and two sons. Mr. Smith, after selling his farm in Sebec, owned several others and a mill, and in November 1865 came to Iowa and bought a farm of Charles Bowman, the farm he has since resided on, it being the northeast of section 28. The next June he moved his family out, consisting of wife and two children – Georgie A. and Hattie A. When he arrived it was as nature had made it. Taking it from the wild prairie, he at first built a board shanty on the center of the north lines, in which he lived two years. It was in this that the first meeting of the township was held, conducted by a man named Swan, a local preacher of Waverly, having services off and on for six months. After this, in 1867, Geo. R. Edmunds, a local preacher from Charles City, preached every two or three weeks, until School house No. 5 was built, when the meetings were held there. It was through the efforts of Mr. Smith and a Mr. Gilman, each of them pledging $25, and raising the same amount, that Elder Lee, of the Upper Iowa Conference, included them in the Rockford work, supplying them with regular services through Rockford’s preacher, Rev. Mr. Rowen. Thus to Mr. Smith we give the credit of establishing regular gospel services in Pleasant Grove Township. Mr. Smith made the first assessment in the township, being Assessor the first two years. Has held several other offices in the township. Is a member of the order of A. F. & A. M., being charter member of Alpha Lodge, of Greene. We find Mr. Smith with fine stock and a practical idea of farming. He has erected a large and commodious New England like barn, has the best pumping-milling apparatus in the township, the well being seventy-five feet deep, and contemplates putting up a new house the coming year. His first wife died Dec. 17, 1874. He married Miss E. J. Brisco, a daughter of John Brisco (see sketch), an early pioneer, Dec. 25, 1876. To Mr. Smith we are indebted for many facts of interest pertaining to Floyd County. He has on his home place sixty acres of corn, thirty of oats, nine of wheat, and will have about fifty tons of hay. He has fifteen cows, thirty-two young stock, eight horses and seventy-five hogs.

T. W. Waller Pages 865 – 866

Was born Feb. 14, 1842 in Kentucky. His parents were Theophilus and Nancy Waller; he was the youngest of five children. His father died four months previous to his birth, and his mother and family moved to Rock County, Wis., where they lived for fifteen years. He received a common school education and has worked on the farm all but two years. When twenty-three years of age, he tried his fortune in the silver belt of Virginia City, going there mostly for his health; he gained much experience, and from there he moved to Floyd County, about 1870, bringing his mother with him, and bought one quarter of section 22. He was married in May 1875, to Sarah J. Jackson, of Canada, and has two children – Jessie M. and Marshall W. He has in crops about thirty acres of oats, forty-five of corn and forty of wheat. Has fifty hogs, twenty-five cattle and seven horses.

Daniel B. Wood Page 866

Was born in Eastern Tennessee, Monroe County, March 12, 1828. He was the youngest son of Joseph and Lydia (Norman) Woods, and of a family of thirteen children. When about twelve or fourteen years old the family moved to Callaway County, Mo., living there six years, moving to Jo Davies County, Ill. During the latter years of his minority he worked by the month for neighboring farmers. In 1853, he married Maria Chouder, of Magoffin County, Ky., buying a farm and living there till 1855, when he moved into the territory, now section 5, Pleasant Grove Township, Ia. In 1849 he went to what is now West Union, Fayette County, before Floyd had been visited by settlers, and made claim to a quarter section of land. He erected a log house in a day and a half, Hoosier style, with neither nail nor bricks, and moved in, covering the logs with a canvas until he had hay for it. He lived in that two years, when the Indian war-whoop getting too near for pleasant dreams, and safety of wife and children, he with other earlier settlers moved back to Illinois, staying there through that year. He moved back in 1859 and has since been a citizen. He has seen this country grow from a prairie to the present improved State; from driving to Waverly with grist, to grinding by the modern windmill. He has ever been a hard-working citizen, and has reared a family of thirteen children, as follows: Sara Jane and Wm. H. born in Illinois; Mary Elizabeth, Geo. W., L. August, Grace Ellen, Celestia, Viola, Jessie, Norman C., Ernest J., Archibald D., and Carrie M., born in Pleasant Grove Township. The first school ever kept in the township was in his old house, he having built a frame one. It was kept by Miss Grace Davidson, of Charles City, in 1862. She had ten scholars. School was held here three or four years. The following are some of the teachers: Misses L. Conlee, Nellie Conlee and Miriam K. Bliss, of Charles City. He has 158 acres of land, fifteen or twenty cattle, eight horses and thirty hogs.