Volume 1 of the 1914 Delaware Co. History (271-273)



January 6, 1851, the County Commissioners' Court ordered the division of South Fork Township as then constituted, separating there from that part of it lying on the southwest side of the Maquoketa River. Township 87, range 4, was thereupon created and named Buck Creek, the first election to be held at the schoolhouse near Aaron Blanchard's. Later the name was changed to Union.


This township lies in the southern tier and borders on Jones County. On the north is Delhi Township, on the west Hazel Green and on the east South Fork. The waters of the Maquoketa and its tributaries drain the land and afford ample quantities for stock the year round. Plenty of good soil is found here, which early attracted settlers. Today the township has many fine farms and the prevailing high prices of their generous yields of food stuffs give the surroundings an aspect of prosperity that is really substantial. Union has less area than any township in the county and it is the smallest in population. The absence of any town or village within its confines may, in a measure, account for this.


The first person to choose land in that part of Delaware County set off as Union Township was Samuel P. Whitaker, who located here in 1839.


Richard Waller, Joseph Ogilby, Ira A. Blanchard and Orlean Blanchard located in the township in 1840. Nelson Main, Silas Main, Charles Roff, ————— Green, William Robinson and Aaron Blanchard were not far be­hind those just mentioned. L. D. Cross arrived in 1842, and for many years lived on section 33.


Robert Hogg entered land in this township in 1846. He built a cabin, in which he had a small stock of merchandise for barter and sale. Mr. Hogg was a gunsmith and was frequently called upon by the Indians to mend their rifles. A daughter, Mrs. I. C. Bacon, was born in this house in 1847. Her husband, I. C. Bacon, came to the township in the fall of 1853. A son, I. C. Bacon, now owns the homestead.


Nicholas Wilson was a settler of Union Township of 1849. He became one of the prominent farmers and owned several hundred acres of land.


Henry W. Winch was a settler of 1850 and lived on section 32 in this town­ship, where he held various local offices.


James H. Hogg was born in Delaware County and came to this township in 1850. He was engaged in business at Grove Creek a number of years and also was postmaster five years.


William Danford settled in Union Township in 1852. He bought 200 acres of land, on which he erected a log house. Mr. Danford planted a cottonwood tree in 1853 that is now five feet in diameter at the base.


Amos Richardson built a frame house in the '50s, opposite the present Buck Creek Church. During the Civil war this house was the distributing point for mail of families living in that part of the county. Mr. Richardson also built before the Civil war the schoolhouse still standing near the Buck Crock Church.


Christopher Dolley, a native of Prussia, immigrated to the United States in 1843 and spent the winter in Chicago. After a residence of ten years in Cook County he came to Delaware County in the spring of 1853 and located on a farm in Union Township, where he died in 1888. With him at the time was his son Godfrey, who enlisted in 1861 in the Twelfth Iowa Infantry. After the war he returned to the Delaware County farm and married Malinda Robin­son, a daughter of William and Olive Robinson, who came to Delaware County in 1846.


Marion E. Davis was brought here in 1854 by his parents, who settled mi a farm in this township.


Benjamin Keith, Jr., settled here in 1854 and lived on section 6. His son. George, now lives on the land entered by him. Peter Keith came in 1851 and lived on section 7.


Christopher Stanger left the State of Illinois in 1854 for Iowa and settled in Union Township. In the following year a calamity overtook his family when two children ate wild parsnips. The untimely death of the little ones cast a gloom over the whole community.


George H. Dutton came from Washington County, Ohio, to Delaware County, Iowa, in the spring of 1856, bringing a young wife with him. He possessed but limited means but what he had he invested in a tract of forty acres of land on Buck Creek, in Union Township, settled on it and went to work. He afterward removed to Milo Township, where he owned a farm lying on sections 34 and 35.


James Milroy settled in this community in 1856, buying land at the high price of $12 an acre. A son, James Milroy, still owns thirty acres of the original place, and a grandson, John W. Milroy, eighty acres.


Alexander Johnson became a pioneer farmer of Union Township in 1856. He bought 160 acres of land, upon which six of his children are now living.


It is said that during the recruiting days of the Civil war. Union Township furnished to the Union armies seven men over her quota.


The Freewill Baptists built the first house of worship in Union Township in the early days of the settlement, and here both Baptists and Methodists wor­shipped in harmony of spirit and delectability of soul.


The Methodists organized a society of that creed in the log schoolhouse, built in the '50s near the Buck Creek Church. They erected a church about one and one-half miles north of their present building and, after using it about twenty years, erected the present Buck Creek Church. L. B. Stanger, a mem­ber of the board of trustees and for many years superintendent of the Methodist Episcopal Sunday School, made a bequest to the church of $600, which was paid at his death in 1907 and used for permanent improvements. Mr. Stanger was an ideal citizen and is greatly missed in the church and community. This is one of the very best rural churches in the state, employing a resident pastor at a salary of $1,200.   The membership is now over one hundred.    The present pastor is Rev. G. J. Chalice, who was appointed in September, 1914.


The first schoolhouse in Union Township was a log structure, which stood three-fourths of a mile west of Hogg's store. The second was also built of logs and stood across from and below the Buck Creek Church.


Becky Teubner, Contributor



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