Biographical History of Montgomery and Adams Counties, Iowa.
Unless otherwise noted, the following biographies were submitted by Dick Barton.
prominent and influential pioneer citizen has resided in Adams county since
1855. Coming here when the country was wild, he has been an important factor in
developing its resources, and is justly entitled to the success which has
crowned his efforts.
Ramsay was born in Putnam county, Indiana, in November, 1832. His parents, John
and Catherine (Thompson) Ramsay, the former a native of Virginia and the latter
of Kentucky, were married in Montgomery county, Kentucky. When John N. was six
weeks old his parents returned to Kentucky, and his mother died there when he
was six years old. In 1848 his father went back to Indiana, and the following
year made the overland trip with mule teams to California, returning the same
year. His death occurred in 1851, at the age of fifty years. By trade he was a
brick mason. Of their four children three are living, namely: Georgia Ann
Hamilton, of Parke county, Indiana; John N., the subject of our sketch; Margaret
Boggs, of Monroe county, Iowa. James S., the oldest, died at the age of fourteen
N. grew up in the rural districts of Kentucky, obtaining his education in the
common schools of that State. When he was seventeen he learned the trade of
carriage-painting. At seventeen he went to Putnam county, Indiana, where he
lived until 1851. That year he came to Monroe county, Iowa. In 1852 he drove an
ox team across the plains to California, arriving there after a four months'
journey. Two years and two months he mined in the various mining districts of
the Golden State, and in the winter of 1854 returned, via the Nicaragua route,
New York and Chicago, to Monroe county, Iowa. In the spring of 1855 he came to
Adams county, and settled on his present farm, 240 acres, in Carl township,
section 15. He at first built a log cabin, 14 x 16 feet, from the humble door of
which the latch-string ever hung out, and where hospitality was dispensed to
both stranger and friend.
December, 1863, Mr. Ramsay enlisted in the Twenty-ninth Iowa Volunteers, and
with his regiment went to the front. He participated in a number of important
engagements in the South, and while in Texas, at the mouth of the Rio Grande
river, was taken sick with fever, and later with chronic disease. He was for a
time in the hospital at San Diego, afterward at New Orleans in the Sedgwick
Hospital two or three weeks, from whence he was transferred to Jefferson
Barracks, St. Louis, Missouri, where he was honorably discharged. He then
returned to his home in Adams county, and here he has since lived. His fine farm
of 240 acres, located in section 15, is one of the best in Carl township. His
primitive log cabin has been moved to the rear and used for a tool house, and in
its place stands a modern frame dwelling, erected in 1875 and surrounded with
evergreens and ornamental shrubs and shade trees, with a beautiful grove and
orchard near by. Other improvements on the farm indicate the prosperity which
has attended Mr. Ramsay.
10, 1858, he married Miss Milly Jane Scott, of Carl township, daughter of Joseph
Scott, an early settler of Adams county, and Sarah C. (Perkins) Scott. Her
parents were married in Kentucky, and came here in 1856. Her father died in
1876, in Carl township, and her mother now resides with her and has reached her
three score years and ten. Mr. and Mrs. Ramsay have four children living, viz.:
Mary C., wife of Frank Mathena, of Carl township; Oliver O. is married and lives
in Larimer county, Colorado; and Joseph William and Lilly Margaret are at home.
They lost six children, all dying young.
Ramsay is a Republican, and in Carl township is one of the wheel horses of his
party. He has been assessor and clerk, and has held other offices. He is a
member of the G. A. R., Wagner Post, No. 335, and both of his sons belong to the
Sons of Veterans, Volunteer Camp, No. 125, of Prescott. He and his wife and
oldest daughter are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, he being a
trustee of the same.
F. Readhead, D. V. S., of Corning, was born in Hamilton, Canada, the son of John
Readhead, a lumber merchant. He was brought up in that city and received an
excellent education, completing it in a business college, and in his profession
he graduated in the Ontario Veterinary College, and since then has enjoyed a
successful career in the treatment of animals, having now an extensive and
growing practice. He is a man of integrity and courtesy of manner. He graduated
with the degree of D. V. S., which was conferred upon him by the Agricultural
art Association, with a special diploma for high honors and scholarship. After
his graduation he returned to Hamilton and practiced with Dr. McTaggert, an
eminent veterinary surgeon, for two and a half years. Then, in 1888, he came to
Corning, where he is now a favorite in the community.
H. Reed, Jr., a farmer of section 27, Grant township, Adams county (post-office
Lenox), settled there in March, 1884, coming from Taylor county, where he had
resided since 1869. He was born in Morgan county, Ohio, September 6, 1852, the
son of J. H. Reed, Sr., a well-to-do farmer and an old settler of Taylor county,
Iowa, and was also an Ohioan by birth and education. Mr. Reed's mother, whose
name before marriage was Adaline Hurd, was born in Rhode Island, and died when
her son was three years of age. The father married again in 1856. He settled in
Iowa, south of Creston, as a pioneer there, and resided there until 1869, when
he moved to Taylor county, locating in Platte township, where he now owns a fine
farm of 700 acres.
Reed, whose name heads this sketch, was reared to farm life. In 1884 he settled
on section 26, Grant township, Adams county, then wild land, improved it and
made a fine farm. He prospered, and in time purchased more land, until he now
owns 480 acres of rich land. He is also the owner of three dwelling-houses,
besides the comple[m]ent of stables and other equipments of a well ordered farm.
Every feature of his premises is an evidence of thrift and good taste. In the
spring of 1891 he occupied his present dwelling, purchased of Joseph Weech, on
land that was first improved by Mr. Ralston. On national questions Mr. Reed is a
was married September 8, 1872, to Mary E. Clapinger, who was born in Lee county,
Iowa, and reared in Taylor county, the daughter of William and Elizabeth (McVey)
Clapinger, who were early settlers of Taylor county. They have two sons - George
Leroy and Ross Hurd.
M. Reichardt, a prominent farmer residing on section 22, Nodaway township, was
born at Altenberg, Saxony, February 4, 1852, the third of the four sons of
Godfrey and Ida Wilhelmine (Kuenstler) Reichardt, natives also of Saxony. His
father died January 2, 1877, in Saxony, and his mother is still living, aged
sixty-nine years. From the age of fourteen to seventeen years he served as
apprenticeship at the glazier's trade, and then emigrated to America, landing at
New York, October 30, 1869. After spending six weeks visiting an aunt he came to
Bureau county, Illinois, where he worked upon a farm and attended school,
according to the season, for about four years, when, in 1880, he came to Adams
county. For the first three years here he made his home with his brother, A. F.
He then married and settled upon his present farm, which he had bought in 1875,
and which is one of the best in the neighborhood. The house, 14 x 24, one and
one-half stories high, is erected upon a beautiful site and surrounded with a
fine lawn, ornamented with trees, etc., and a barn and out-buildings, etc., are
well arranged and in good trim, all constituting good evidence of the thrift of
the proprietor. On national questions Mr. Reichardt is a zealous Republican. In
religion he was reared a Lutheran, and his wife a Methodist. Mr. Reichardt is a
well informed citizen, and frank and cordial in his manner.
was married November 29, 1883, in Jasper township, this county, to Miss
Elizabeth Storch, a popular and successful teacher, born in Tioga county,
Pennsylvania, a daughter of Leonard and Mary (Krieger) Storch. By this marriage
there are two sons, namely: Chester Otto, born July 29, 1886, and Albert
Godfrey, February 22, 1890. One child died in infancy.
T. C. Reid, dealer in agricultural implements, was born in Indiana county, Pennsylvania, June 3, 1853, being the fifth child in a family of eight of Jesse and Elizabeth Reid. At the age of five years he removed to Davenport, Scott county, Iowa, where he was engaged in farming, working on the farm in summer. He went to school when he could be spared in the winter, and completed his school days at Oskaloosa College. He engaged in farming in Scott county until 1877, when he came to Corning, Adams county, Iowa, as manager of section 9, Quincy township, the same being owned by E. D. Kemp. On July 6, 1879, he was married to Miss Anna R. Glines. On January 1, 1885, he gave up the position as manager for Mr. Kemp, and engaged in farming for himself for two years, at the end of which time he removed to Corning and opened up his present prosperous implement business. Tom Reid, as he is familiarly called, knows how to handle the implement business. In the retail trade his books show a $20,000 business for the year 1891. He is the oldest dealer in the city of Corning, and he is known as a hustler.
Reily, a farmer and stock-raiser, section 15, Mercer township, Adams county,
since the spring of 1868, was born in Germany in 1830, a son of Eve (Klink)
Reily. The father was killed by an accident before Martin was born, and the
mother was subsequently married to Michael Gates. The son was taken in charge by
his grandfather Klink, who in turn died in a few years, and the boy was then
taken care of by an uncle until he was of age. He was married in 1853, to Miss
Eve Fairbank, a native of Wittenburg, Germany, and a daughter of Michael and
Catharina (Kabler) Fairbank. In 1853 they emigrated to America, coming on the
sailing vessel Antwerp, and landing at New York after a voyage of eight weeks.
He resided in Columbiana county, Ohio, until he came to Adams county in the year
mentioned, and purchased 160 acres of wild land, and he has since made it a fine
farm, one of the best in the township. He also has eighty acres of improved land
on section 22, in a high state of cultivation. Mr. Reily is a Democrat in his
general politics, and he and his wife are church members. They are the parents
of seven children, as follows: John and Martin, residing in the same township;
William H.; Melissa, now the wife of James Waller, of Prescott township; and
Frank, Charles and Lewis.
E. Richards, attorney at law, is the oldest member of the bar, having
established himself here in May, 1867, continuously practicing law here since.
He was born in the town of Riga, Monroe county, New York, December 9, 1835. His
father was Ira Richards, who settled in the town of Riga in 1812. He was a
native of Hillsdale, Massachusetts, born in 1791. He belonged to an early
Massachusetts family of Puritan ancestry. He went to western New York from
Massachusetts when the former was the far West. The site of the city of
Rochester at that time was but a marsh. He opened a farm in the heavily timbered
regions of Monroe county, his location being in the town of Riga. Returning to
Massachusetts he married, but his first wife died in the town of Riga, leaving
no children. He later married Ruth Turner, who was born in Portland, Maine, and
removed with her parents to Riga.
E. Richards was born in Monroe county and was reared on the farm where his
father settled. He prepared for college at Riga Academy, and graduated at
Rochester University in the class of 1860. He taught for two years and then read
law three years and was admitted to the bar at Rochester. Later he followed
surveying for a considerable time. In 1867 he came to Red Oak, and has [since]
devoted his time to his profession. He is a Democrat in politics. Mr. and Mrs.
Richards have two children, - Paul W. and Carl E.
Richards was born in Peoria county, Illinois, February 22, 1857, son of R. E.
and Sarah (Walford) Richards, both natives of Worcestershire, England. The
father was sixteen years old when he emigrated to this country and settled in
Peoria county, Illinois, where, some years later, he was married. To him and his
wife were born two children: Fred, Edward, Charley Mary and Fanny. Fanny is now
the wife of George Tenant and lives on the old home farm. The father served
three years in the late was as a member of the One Hundred and Twenty-fifth
Illinois Infantry, was wounded at Lookout mountain, and now receives a pension.
was thirteen years old when he came to Adams county, Iowa, and here he was
reared and educated. In 1881 he bought wild land where he now resides, in
Lincoln township, section 22. He at once commenced making improvements and is
now comfortably situated. He has a cottage home, good outbuildings, orchard,
small fruit, etc., and is engaged in general farming and stockraising.
19, 1881, he married Miss Lydia E. Frederick, a teacher of experience and good
reputation. She was born in La Fayette county, Wisconsin, and when eight years
of age came to Adams county, Iowa, finishing her education in the Corning high
school. She is a daughter of J. M. and Isabel (Roberts) Frederick, of Corning.
Mr. and Mrs. Richards have three children: Harvey Edward, John M. and William A.
Their first child, Arthur F., born October 16, 1881, was accidentally killed by
a runaway team, June 28, 1887.
Richards is a Republican politically, and is now serving as constable of Lincoln
township. Both he and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church,
and the latter is associated with the W. C. T. U. of Lincoln township.
E. Richards, a highly respected citizen of Adams county, Iowa, was born in
Warwickshire, England, February 2, 1833. His parents were William and Ellen
(Steward) Richards, both natives of England. His father was a farmer and leased
property then first married that remained in the family, renting from year to
year for more than seventy years. He passed his life on the farm and died there
March 4, 1864, at the age of sixty-nine years. His mother departed this life
January 13, 1881, at the age of eighty years. Both were members of the
Established Church of England. Of their nine children Richard E. was the fifth
an early age the subject of our sketch, filled with the spirit of adventure,
gained his parents' consent to come to America, bade them good-bye, promised to
return in five years, and set out alone for this country. Arrived here he
engaged as a clerk in his uncle's wholesale notion store in New York. He clerked
there for nearly five years, then in the summer of 1854 came west and worked on
a farm in Illinois until his five years were up, after which he returned to
England. He remained at home six months and during that time reached his
majority. Again he embarked for America. Each time he crossed the ocean on a
sail vessel, the first voyage consuming thirty-five days, the second four weeks,
and the third six weeks. His second passage was a rough one and at one time the
vessel was supposed to be going under. On his last voyage they were becalmed on
the banks of Newfoundland. The vessel also encountered other dangers among the
icebergs and field ice.
his return to America, Mr. Richards again came west to Illinois, and until the
war came on was variously employed in that State. In August, 1862, he enlisted
in company C, One-hundred and Twenty-fifth Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He
participated in the battles of Perryville, Chickamauga, Missionary Ridge, Resaca
and Kenesaw Mountain. At the last named place, June 27, 1864, he was wounded
simultaneously in the left knee and the right heel, the same bullet doing the
mischief in both places. He was yet able to walk to the ambulance half a mile
away, and after reaching it was taken to the field hospital. He was wounded at
nine o'clock in the morning, and he had nothing to eat or drink, nor did he
receive any medical attention until the next day, on account of carelessness on
the part of the regimental doctor. When he returned to Nashville gangrene set in
his foot. Five times it was operated on, each operation about equal to an
amputation. He was much emaciated and was thought to be near death. About this
time his wife came to the hospital and was instrumental in having him removed to
Louisville, and some weeks later to Chicago, arriving at the latter place in
September. He remained in hospital at Chicago until March, 1865, when he was
discharged from the service and went home on crutches. He was disabled for some
time, the wound on his heel remaining a running sore for more than twenty years.
trying several devices for making a living, serving in agencies, etc., he
returned to farming in Peoria county, Illinois. In the fall of 1869 he came to
Adams county, Iowa, and in the spring of 1870 settled where he now resides,
section 14, Lincoln township. He left the farm in 1886 and moved to Corning,
remaining there till the death of his wife in June, 1889. Her age was fifty-nine
years. She was a life-long member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and a true
type of the Christian wife, mother and neighbor. In the fall after her death Mr.
Richards returned to the farm. Here he owns 200 acres, all enclosed. His
residence is located on a half-section road. Mr. Richards is a man who has made
much of opportunity, having started out a poor boy and now being well-to-do and
surrounded with the comforts of life.
marriage occurred March 24, 1856, Miss Sarah Walford the lady of his choice. For
history of her parents see biography of Charles Walford in this work. Five
children were born to them: W. F., T. E., Mary E., Fanny L. and Charles. T. E.
married Susan Boswell and has five children, Walter H., Ethel E., Ellen G.,
Maggie D. and Homer O. Mary E., wife of W. H. Boswell, died at the age of
twenty-one years, leaving one child, Lloyd M. She was a member of the Methodist
Episcopal Church. Fanny L. is the wife of George A. Tenant and has one child,
Edna C. Charles, the third-born, died in infancy.
to his marriage Mr. Richards was a member of the Established Church of England,
and at that time united with the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is a member of
the G. A. R. Post of Corning. In politics he is a Republican and has held
various township offices.
V. Richey, who resides on section 2 in Nodaway township, is the earliest settler
of this county now residing in Nodaway township. He was born in Richland county,
Ohio, August 28, 1830. His father was Joseph Richey and his mother's maiden name
was Martha Laird. Joseph Richey was a native of Pennsylvania, and his father,
the grandfather of the subject of this sketch, also named Joseph Richey, was a
native of Pennsylvania. Joseph, Jr., went to Richland county, Ohio, when a young
man, and began the clearing up of a farm, and was married there to Martha Laird,
who was born and reared in Ohio. The mother of the subject of this notice died
in 1832 at the birth of her third child. The husband and father died in 1835.
Mr. L. V. Richey is the only representative of his father's family living. On
the death of his father, a cousin was appointed his guardian, with whom he lived
for many years - in fact, until he was married and sought a home of his own. He
received a good common-school education, and at the age of nineteen years began
to learn the trade of carpenter, and this trade, with building, has been his
chief occupation through life.
the 17th of June, 1852, he was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Wolfe. In the
fall of 1853 Mr. and Mrs. Richey came to Mount Pleasant, Iowa, and the following
spring to Adams county, settling on a piece of land in Mercer township. He and
his wife were not only the first settlers of what is now Mercer township, but
also of the east half of Adams county. Mr. Richey entered first, 160 acres of
timber in what is now the township of Prescott. The following year he sold the
greater part of this land, and with the proceeds paid the entry fee of a quarter
section of prairie land in Mercer township. On this land Mr. and Mrs. Richey
lived until 1859, when Mr. Richey sold his land and removed to Corning and
engaged in building. There he and his wife lived until the fall of 1871, when
they removed to their present location in Nodaway township. In connection with
his farming interests Mr. Richey has continued the occupation of building. He
has probably erected as many buildings in Adams county as any other builder.
Richey was born in Knox county, Ohio. Her father was Andrew Wolfe, and her
mother's maiden name was Saloma Garver. The former was a native of Pennsylvania.
The latter was born in Germany, but came to America with her parents when a
child of but eight years. Mr. Wolfe settled in Ohio, and continued to live in
that State until death. At the time of death he and his wife were residents of
Sandusky. Mrs. Richey was one of a family of eight children, consisting of three
sons and five daughters, several of whom are now deceased. Mrs. Elizabeth
Barnett, wife of John Barnett, of Douglas township, is a sister of Mrs. Richey.
Mr. and Mrs. Richey have had nine children, six sons and three daughters,
namely: Elizabeth E., wife of Granville Overhulse; Mary I., wife of John Lemon;
Sarah I., wife of William Peryman; the eldest son in Charles D., and the others
are John L., Samuel M., Frederick E., Joseph T. and Ira E.
and Mrs. Richey suffered all privations incident to a pioneer life. They came to
the county with two covered wagons, which constituted their residences for about
a month. By that time Mr. Richey had erected a log cabin with a puncheon floor,
built in the truly primitive style of the pioneer days. Later Mr. Richey erected
a hewed log house, where the family lived in comparative comfort. Mr. and Mrs.
Richey have a pleasant home, where they now reside, in the enjoyment of the
comforts of life; but their recollections of early trials and tribulations
incident to their early settlement are vivid in their minds, and will ever
remain so. The wolf and the deer in the early days were numerous, and were so
unused to the appearance of man as to have but little fear of him; but the
fertile farm has taken the place of the forest, and the prairie land is turned
to cultivated fields. For the long period of thirty seven years have Mr. and
Mrs. Richey been residents of Adams county. They have reared a large family of
children, all but one of whom was born in Adams county. It may be mentioned as a
remarkable fact that through all the privations of the pioneer days, and during
later years, the family of Mr. and Mrs. Richey have all been spared, no death
having occurred in that family during their married life. A parallel case can
hardly be found in Adams county, where so large a family, the greater part of
whom have reached mature years, have lived so long without bereavement by death.
Mr. and Mrs. Richey are numbered among the well known and esteemed citizens of
Adams county, where they have lived so long. Politically Mr. Richey was a
Republican during the troublous war times, but later, as new issues came up, he
saw his duty elsewhere and has voted with the Democratic party. He and his wife
are faithful and consistent members of the Advent Church.
H. Ridgeway (postoffice Cromwell, Iowa) was born in Canada, May 14, 1847. His
father, John Ridgeway, was born in Ireland, October 13, 1820, came to America in
1840, and settled in New York. His mother, a native of Canada, was before her
marriage Miss Lydia Wheeler. Of their seven children, five are living. George H.
was about eighteen months old when his parents moved from Canada to New York. In
1866 they removed to Illinois, where the father still resides.
1881 Mr. Ridgeway came from Illinois to Adams county, Iowa, and settled in
section 25, Colony township, his present location. He owns 160 acres here and
eighty acres in Union county. His farm is highly cultivated and is devoted to
general farming and stock-raising, he being especially interested in fine
cattle. He is one of the representative farmers of his township, his advice
frequently being sought in matters of agricultural interest. He has held the
office of township trustee; he has been a trustee of the Adams County Mutual
Insurance Company. Politically he is an Independent.
Ridgeway was married December 10, 1871, to Ida M. Wheeler, who was born in
Canada, February 10, 1852. They have four children living - Albert, Charles,
Irwin and Beal. He and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
W. Ritnour was born in Fayette county, Pennsylvania, in 1834, son of George and
Sally (Wipkey) Ritnour, natives of Pennsylvania.
His grandfather, Adam Ritnour, was born in Germany, and grandfather
George Wipkey was of German extraction.
George W. is one of a family of twelve children.
His father was a farmer all his life; in politics, a Democrat, and in
religion a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, having served as a class
leader for many years.
He died at the age of fifty-nine.
The mother lives in Page county, Iowa, and is now ninety years old.
Ritnour was reared on a farm and educated in the common schools of his native
In October, 1862, he enlisted in Company B, One Hundred and Sixty-eighth
Pennsylvania Infantry Volunteers; participated in the battle of Gettysburg and
other engagements of less importance, and served until July, 1863, when his term
of enlistment expired, and he was honorably discharged at Harrisburg,
the close of the war he went to Whiteside county, Illinois, where he spent one
Returning East, he passed the following four years in his native county.
He then came to Iowa, and in Page county improved two farms, which he
subsequently sold at a good profit, and bought 160 acres of land in Douglas
township, Adams county, where he now resides.
This he purchased of Bob Houston.
It is one of the best farms in the township; is well watered by a creek
and springs, and has good fences and other improvements.
Forty rods back from the road is situated the commodious residence, 24 x
36 feet, two stories high, and built on the southern style.
In Fayette county, Pennsylvania, Mr. Ritnour was married, at the age of twenty-three, to Margaret Ritnour, a native of that place and a daughter of Samuel and Caroline Ritnour. Thirteen children have been born to them, eleven of whom are living, viz.: Harriette, James McClellan, Hatty, Ellen, Etta, Susan, Sada, Jacob, Mena, Cary and George. John died at the age of two years, and Henry, in 1891, aged eighteen years and six months. Mr. Ritnour is a Democrat, and a member of the Meyerhoff Post, Nodaway. He and his wife are members of the Evangelical Church.
W. Roberts, county Surveyor of Adams county, Iowa, was born in Muskingum county,
Ohio, November 19, 1845. His parents, Daniel and Sarah (Inman) Roberts, were
natives respectively of Virginia and Marietta, Ohio. His father was for many
years successfully engaged in agricultural pursuits, and at one time served as
Justice of the Peace. He was only five years old when his family moved to Ohio.
In Muskingum county, that State, he was married. In 1851 he moved to Henry
county, Illinois, back to Ohio the following year, and in 1859 to Adams county,
Iowa. Having been an early settler of three States, he well knew the hardships
incident to pioneer life. He drilled the first military company ever formed in
Adams county, a company of home guards. He understood the manual of arms, having
drilled soldiers for the Mexican war, although he did not take part in that
struggle. A Christian man and a member of the Baptist Church, he died February
25, 1889, aged seventy years. His widow is still living, aged seventy-two years,
with powers of mind and body well preserved. This worthy couple had four
children, namely: Pomelia J. and Mary E., deceased, the former at the age of one
year and the latter at the age of eight; William W. and Lewis D.
W. Roberts attended the common schools of Ohio, and after coming to Iowa
received instructions in a public school until he was prepared for the freshman
class in college. He then entered the Iowa Wesleyan University at Mount
Pleasant, and graduated there June 10, 1870, receiving the degree of A. B. and
the same from the literary society of which he was a member. Three years later
he received the title of A. M. After leaving college, Mr. Roberts taught in the
graded schools in Quincy for two years. Immediately thereafter, in the fall of
1873, he was elected county Superintendent of the schools of Adams county; was
re-elected in 1875, and filled that important position most acceptably. He is
now serving his second term as county Surveyor, having been elected first in
1887. He has also served as Justice of the Peace. A public-spirited, progressive
and enterprising citizen, he has been and is to-day an important factor in
promoting the best interests of this county.
Roberts has been in the real estate business with H. F. Dale of Corning for some
four years. He came to his present location in 1882. Here, in section 9,
Washington township, he owns eighty acres of well improved land. He raises corn
and all kinds of fruits, his land being adapted to any product indigenous to
September 18, 1876, Mr. Roberts wedded Miss Sadie A. Andrews, daughter of O. S. and Delilah Andrews, residents of Box butte county, Nebraska. Mr. Andrews is a contractor and mechanic, as popular as he is extensively known. He was a leading pioneer of Iowa. He and his wife had four children: Patience A., Sadie A., William F. and Letitia O. The last named is the wife of H. K. Prickett, of Box butte county. Mr. and Mrs. Roberts have been blessed with nine children, viz.: F. Clyde, Lewis W., Jennie M., Jesse E., Daniel C. and Orlando S. (twins), Ida I., and Mabel and Ethel (twins). Mrs. Roberts, like her husband, was for a time engaged in teaching. She is a lady of much culture and refinement. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In his political views Mr. Roberts is [Independent], voting for men and measures rather than party. He is opposed to monopolies in any form, and believes in keeping pace with nineteenth-century progress. Such is a brief sketch of one of Adams county's best citizens.
Calvin Robeson, who resides on section 24, Nodaway township, is one of the pioneers of Adams county, residing on his present farm since about November 1, 1857. The farm on which he lives consists of 160 acres. He also has 104 acres on sections 13 and 14.
Mr. Robeson was born in Knox county, Ohio, March 9, 1825. His father, Joseph Robeson, was born in Cadiz, Ohio, and his father, the grandfather of our subject, was a native of Maryland. The great-grandfather of Calvin Robeson was a native of Ireland. Mr. Robeson's grandfather was a pioneer of Knox county. The mother of the subject of this notice was Sarah Roof, a native of Virginia, whose parents emigrated to Ohio when she was a child. Joseph Robeson and wife were the parents of ten children who grew to mature years, and all are living but one son, Thomas, who died in Colorado a number of years ago. Calvin Robeson is the only one of the family living in Adams county. He was reared to the occupation of farming, and married Miss Margaret Smith, born in Holmes county, Ohio, but reared in Coshocton county. Her parents were William and Elizabeth Smith. The former was born in New Jersey, and the latter, whose maiden name was Elizabeth Lephy, was born in Ohio. Mr. and Mrs. Robeson continued to live in Ohio until the fall of 1856, when they came to Iowa. They went directly to Brighton county, and in November, 1857, settled on their present farm. In the summer of 1856, Mr. Smith, the father of Mrs. Robeson, came to Adams county from Ohio and bought three forties on section 24, Nodaway township. Two of these forties now form a portion of Mr. Robeson's farm. Mr. Smith, however, returned to Ohio, and Mr. Robeson and Jacob Smith, a brother of Mrs. Robeson, settled on the land that Mr. Smith had purchased. Mr. Robeson's original farm contained but forty acres; the remainder of his landed possessions he has since added. The parents of Mr. Robeson continued to live in Ohio until their death, as did those of Mrs. Robeson. Mr. Smith purchased the land above referred to for his children, but never returned to Iowa. After making his purchase of land he died, at the age of sixty-nine years. When Mr. and Mrs. Robeson came to Adams county there were but few settlers in what is now Nodaway township, and here they have lived for the long period of thirty-four years, witnessing the great growth and development the county has made since that time.
They have two children, a son and daughter, both of whom were born in Nodaway township; Frank, their son, was born in 1859, and married Miss Catherine Vance, and they have two promising children, - Calvin, named for his grandfather, and Georgia Margaret; the second child of Mr. and Mrs. Robeson is Adna. Mrs. Robeson has a brother, Jacob Smith, living in Nodaway township.
Politically Mr. Robeson was in early times a Whig, later a Republican, and still later became interested in the Grange movement. Mr. and Mrs. Robeson are numbered among the well-known and esteemed old settlers of Adams county, where they have lived so long. They have a pleasant home where they are surrounded by the comforts of life, the results of industry.
Rogers, of sections 19 and 20, Grant township, is one of the prominent and
leading citizens of the township, who settled in Adams county March 5, 1886. He
came to Iowa in 1839, when it was yet a territory. He was born in Muskingum
county, Ohio, February 27, 1834, a son of Henry and Fannie (Bixler) Rogers, both
natives of Pennsylvania. The father's parents were natives of New Jersey, and of
English origin. In 1837 the family bade adieu to Ohio, and started toward the
setting sun. They spent eighteen months in Sangamon county, Illinois, where they
had relatives, and then came to Linn county, Iowa, having come all the way by
teams. They settled nine miles southeast of Cedar Rapids, where they were among
the first settlers, and Bloomington, now Muscatine, was their nearest trading
place, some fifty miles distant. At times the family were without flour for
months. The father came here with only $2.50, but was a strong man and afterward
became well-to-do. Mr. and Mrs. Rogers had nine children, five sons and four
our subject, was reared on a frontier farm, and spent many a day in driving ox
teams to an old-fashioned breaking plow. He received a limited education in an
old log schoolhouse, and at the same time helped his father improve a farm, and
later owned a farm of his own. In 1886 he sold his place and came to this
county, where he now owns 400 acres of land north of Lenox four miles. His farm
is one of the best in Adams county, on which are a good frame house, barns,
sheds, cribs, feed lots, windmills and a grove of seven acres, planted to maple,
poplar, cottonwood and willow trees. Mr. C. W. Rogers with his father, is
engaged in the stock and dairy business, keeping from fifty to sixty cows and
100 head of other cattle, besides horses and hogs.
was married December 7, 1855, in Linn county, Iowa, to Miss Mary Jane
Thomas, a woman of intelligence, who has been a worthy helpmate to her
husband, and to whom much of his success in due. She was born in Westmoreland
county, Pennsylvania, a daughter of James and Jane (Park) Thomas, both
also natives of Pennsylvania, and of English and German extraction.
Mrs. Rogers was reared in her native State until sixteen years of age,
when her parents came to Linn county, Iowa, where the mother afterward
died; the father died in Greene county, Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Rogers have
four children, viz.: Armintha Jane, the wife of Robert Clark, of Taylor
county, Iowa; they have two children; Martha Malinda, the wife of David
Clark, of Greene county, Iowa; Charles W., who lives on the home farm,
married Elizabeth Scott, and has three children; Homer E., also on the
home farm, married Myrtle McGraw, and has one child. Mr. Rogers is a
Republican in his political views; his father was formerly a Whig. He
has been a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church since March, 1858,
as has also his wife. He has filled the positions of class-leader, exhorter
and Sunday-school superintendent; has also taken an active interest
in education and temperance and in every good cause.
A. Rowland, a prominent resident of Colony township, Adams county, Iowa, was
born in Orange county, Vermont, February 9, 1840, in the town of Corinth. He is
the oldest son in a family of three sons and four daughters of Richard and
Adeline (Bacon) Rowland, the former born in Corinth, Vermont, in 1814, and the
latter at Bath, New Hampshire, in 1816. His father left the farm at the age of
twelve years and went to Lowell, Massachusetts, where he learned the trade of
shoemaker and also the carpenter's trade. After his marriage he returned to
subject of this sketch was united in marriage February 7, 1866, with Ellen Jenne,
who was born April 21, 1846. She is a daughter of Sarah F. (Holden) Jenne, who
was born October 6, 1814. Her grandfather Holden was born at Shirley,
Massachusetts, May 20, 1787. Mr. and Mrs. Rowland have had ten children, two of
whom are deceased.
Rowland came to Adams county in 1876 and settled in section 21, Colony township,
where he now resides. He has 200 acres of fine farming land and is engaged in
general farming and stock-raising, giving special attention to the latter
occupation. He has shorthorn cattle, Englishshire horses and Poland-China hogs.
He has a mammoth Kentucky jack and is raising some fine specimens of that breed;
also has an imported Englishshire horse.
During the civil was Mr. Rowland enlisted in Company E, Thirty-eighth Wisconsin Regiment, and served with bravery until he was mustered out at the close of the struggle. He was wounded at the battle of Petersburg, and now receives a pension. Politically he is a Republican. He has served as a member of the School Board several terms.
John Rudisil, Jr., was born in Marion county, Indiana, near Indianapolis, December 19, 1845, son of John Rudisil, Sr. The latter was born in Maryland, in 1812, while his father, George Rudisil, was participating in the war of 1812. The grandfather was of German extraction, and was also a native of Maryland. John Rudisil, St., was reared in his native State, and in 1838 went to Indiana, where, in 1843, he married Miss Nancy Bellis, a native of Kentucky and daughter of John Bellis, who was born in the Old Dominion. In 1863 he came with his family to Iowa and settled in Madison county, where he lived four years. At the end of that time he removed to Adams county. Here he improved a farm and has since lived, he and his wife being now residents of Carl. They have five children, namely: George, John, Jr., William, Charles and Anna.
The subject of our sketch grew up on a farm in Indiana and received his education in the public schools of that State. He was eighteen when he came to Iowa. In 1866 he located in Adams county, and in 1877 settled on his present farm in section 2, Carl township. No improvements of any kind had then been made here, and since that time he has developed a fine farm. It contains 120 acres, is well improved with good buildings, fences, grove, orchard, etc. His orchard contains a hundred bearing trees and small fruits of all kinds.
Mr. Rudisil was married in Carl township, this county, in March, 1869, to Rebecca J. Scott, daughter of D. C. Scott, a pioneer of this county, prominent mention of whom will be found elsewhere in this book. Mrs. Rudisil was reared and educated in this county. Two children have been born to them: Ada Belle and Elbert E.
Mr. Rudisil is a Republican, and has served officially in Carl township. He is a member of the Congregational Church and a deacon in the same; is also active in Sabbath-school work, being assistant superintendent. He is a most worthy citizen, and one whose influence is ever felt for good. Any movement, educational, religious or otherwise, that has for its object the advancement of the best interests of the community is sure to find in him an earnest support.
James Miller Russell, one of the representative citizens of Quincy township, was born in Windham county, Vermont, November 24, 1832. When he was eight years of age his father, Alvin J. Russell, emigrated from the State of Vermont to Morgan county, Ohio, and thence to Wyandot county, in the same State. When the family emigrated to Ohio it consisted of the parents and two sons, James M. and Alvin Chandler. A third son, George W., was born in the State of Ohio. In 1854 James M. Russell, then a young man of twenty-two years, came to Iowa. He remained in Polk county during the summer of that year, when he returned to Ohio. He was much pleased with Iowa - in fact made so favorable a report of the country that his father decided to emigrate hither with his family. A gentleman living near the home of Mr. Russell, in Ohio, owned quite a large tract of land in Adams county, and Mr. Russell, Sr., entered into negotiation with this gentleman, whose name was Anthony Beery, for a portion of this tract of land. The negotiation resulted in Mr. Russell exchanging his farm in Ohio for 200 acres on section 13, Quincy township, Adams county. Accordingly, the following year, the entire family of Mr. Russell, Sr., consisting of parents, their three sons and an adopted daughter named Ann Katch, came to Iowa and settled on this land. They made the journey with teams, bringing also by the same conveyance their household goods, etc. No improvements had been made on the land when the family located thereon. During the first winter of their sojourn in Adams county the family occupied a log cabin with a sod roof, which was located on the stream known as Hatton branch, that being the only available shelter they were able to secure, and this was situated some distance from the land they had secured for a future home. In the spring of 1856 the father and sons began breaking up the land, and built thereon a small plank house, into which the family moved. They continued to work together improving the farm, and ultimately added largely to their first possession, becoming the owners of 840 acres. The first of the family to remove from the homestead was Alvin Chandler, who married and settled in Washington township, Adams county. In 1871 he removed to Oregon and resided in Umatilla county. The youngest of the three brothers married, and engaged in merchandising in the village of Quincy, then the county seat of Adams county. Later he engaged in the same business in Corning, where he continued for a number of years when he removed to Indian Territory, and died in the fall of 1886, leaving a family of six children. The father and mother of the Russell family lived at the homestead until death. The former was born in Vermont, February 26, 1803, and died April 26, 1876. The mother, whose maiden name was Nancy Miller, was born February 26, 1804, and died November 12, 1882.
James Miller Russell, the eldest child, as already stated, was the first of the family to come to Iowa. He was married, March 3, 1859, to Miss Mary Elizabeth Howard, daughter of Charles Howard, of Wapello county, Iowa. Mrs. Russell was born in Morgan county, Ohio, in 1838. She lost her mother by death when she was but twelve years of age. Her father remarried, and in 1850 emigrated with his family to Iowa. He lived in Wapello county for twenty-five years, and then removed to Missouri. He was killed a number of years ago by being run over by a wagon. Mrs. Russell was the eldest of five children.
James M. Russell continued to live at the homestead until his death, which occurred very suddenly July 29, 1889. He had been in usual health and partook of his dinner as usual, soon after which he went to the well, which was at some distance from his barn where men were engaged in threshing, to obtain water for the threshers. Having been absent much longer that was deemed necessary, his son, James M., went in search of him and found his father lying dead beside the spring, having, as was supposed, died from an affection of the heart. The sudden death of the husband and father was a crushing blow to his family. Mr. Russell was an upright, respected citizen, and during his long residence in Adams county had ever the confidence and esteem of his fellow-citizens. He was ever prominent in whatever tended to promote the best interests of the community in which he lived. He was for many years connected with the School Board, and did much to promote the growth of education in his district.
In his political views he was a Republican.
Mr. Russell and wife were the parents of ten children: Charles A., the eldest, born January 29, 1860, died at the age of three years; Colonel Warren Russell, the eldest surviving child, was born January 28, 1861. He married Miss Cora A. Jones, and lives of a portion of the homestead. George Howard, the second son, a prominent teacher, was born December 5, 1862; James A., was born December 18, 1864; Nancy, September 20, 1866; she is one of the prominent teachers of Adams county, and has taught the home school for ten terms; Mary Lucretia, born September 12, 1868, married Charles Van Houten; Abbie Oddesson, was born April 27, 1870; Ralph, March 21, 1872; Frank, December 12, 1874, and John Edward, March 17, 1881. Mrs. Russell, with her children, reside at the old homestead, around which are associated pleasant memories of the days gone by, when she and her lamented husband labored in unison to improve and beautify their Iowa home.