Biographical History of Montgomery and Adams Counties, Iowa - 1892 - A

Montgomery County  >> 1892 Index
Adams County

Biographical History of Montgomery and Adams Counties, Iowa. 
Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1892.


Unless otherwise noted, the following biographies were submitted by Dick Barton.

William L. Abbey resides on section 14, where he settled in the spring of 1884, the first improvement having been made by Mr. Applegate. Mr. Abbey was born in Morgan county, Illinois, a son of Ebenezer Abbey, a native of the State of New York; but when a young man went to Ohio. He married Miss Mary E. Tiffany, a native of Buckeye State, and afterward removed to Morgan county, Illinois, thence to Henry county, Illinois, and to Adams county, Iowa, in 1868. He passed the remainder of his days here, and his wife died when William L. was about three months old. Ebenezer Abbey was three times married. He was the father of five sons and a daughter, who is deceased.

Mr. Abbey came to Iowa in the fall of 1865. He enlisted in the One Hundred and Twenty-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and served over three years; was in the trans-Mississippi Department; participated in the seige of Mobile and the battles connected therewith. He was married just before entering the army to Miss Annetta Frink, a native of Indiana.

They have five children, three sons and two daughters. The oldest is in Illinois. All the rest are in Iowa.

John W. Alexander, dealer in furniture at Corning, was born in the State of New York, in 1863. His parents, Ephraim (who died in Illinois in 1875) and Helen (Smith) Alexander, were natives also of the Empire State, and had two sons and a daughter; the latter is now the wife of Frank Widener, president of the First National Bank.

Mr. Alexander, our present subject, was a farmer in Jasper township, Adams county, until 1890, when he moved into Corning and engaged in his present business, into which he throws his energy, with commensurate success. His stock is the nicest imaginable. In 1886 he married Miss Lee, a native of Wisconsin, and they have two children - Martha and Frank. Mr. Alexander is a member of the order of the Knights of Pythias.

E. R. Amdor, who resides on section 25, Lincoln township, Adams county, Iowa, was born in Dearborn county, Indiana, January 1, 1849. His parents were Bennett N. and Sophronia (Manly) Amdor, the former a native of Saxony, Germany, and the latter of Ohio. Michael Amdor, father of Bennett, left Germany to prevent his oldest child and only son, then about twenty-one years of age, from entering the army. Bennett's two sisters accompanied them to America, and from the eastern coast they made the journey West to Indiana by wagon. One of the sisters, Earnestine, married John Houck and after his death was married to Lotte Boham. The other, Christiana, wedded Lawrence Steinmetz. Both sisters are yet living. Bennett Amdor died in Dearborn county, Indiana, at the age of sixty-four years. He was a farmer all his life and an energetic and progressive man. His wife is still living at the old homestead in Dearborn county, and at this writing is seventy-one years.

The subject of our sketch was the fifth born in a family of nine children. He was reared of a farm, at the age of twenty-one began operations for himself, and has ever since followed the independent life of a farmer. In February, 1871, he came to Iowa. One year he rented land and the next year came to his present location, then wild and altogether unimproved. He now owns 210 acres of highly cultivated and well improved land, all under fence and adapted to corn, oats and grass. He has an artificial grove, a good bearing orchard, and raises some small fruit. His two story residence is nicely located and before it spreads a landscape of beautiful and fertile country. He is located four miles north of Carbon and on the section road. He raises a good grade of cattle, hogs and horses, his stock consuming about all the corn, hay, etc., produced on his place.

April 13, 1873, Mr. Amdor married Miss Sarah Frances, daughter of David and Mary J. Cochran, of Adams county. Mrs. Amdor is a lady of culture and refinement, possessing marked intelligence and a natural grace of manner. Her parents came from Peoria county, Illinois, in 1870. Her father was born in Scotland and her mother in France. They had a family of fifteen children, of whom nine are still living. Eleven children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Amdor, viz.: Sophronia, wife of James H. Billingsley; Christina, Ella, Esther, Dayton, Lillie, Everett, Bertha, and the following deceased: Augustus D., at the age of six months, and Eugene and Eunice (twins), at the age of one month and six days.

Politically Mr. Amdor is a Democrat.

F. P. Amdor, M. D., of Carbon, Iowa, is one of the prominent and successful physicians of Adams county, and as such is justly entitled to honorable mention in this volume.

He was born in Dearborn county, Indiana, January 16, 1851, son of Bennett and Sophrona Amdor. His father was born in Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Germany; was reared and educated there, and at the age of eighteen came to America and settled in Dearborn county, Indiana. He died at the age of sixty-five years[.] His mother, a native of Ohio and a daughter of James and Mary (Vaun) Monley, is still living in Dearborn county. Dr. Amdor was the sixth born in their family of nine children, four sons and five daughters. He grew up in his native county, attending the common schools, and assisting his father on the farm. He finished his education at Moore's Hill, Indiana. At the age of sixteen he engaged in teaching and at the same time commenced the study of medicine under Drs. Kyle and Craig, eminent physicians of Manchester, Indiana. He completed his medical course in the Ohio medical college at Cincinnati in 1871. Returning to Dearborn county, he at once engaged in the practice of his profession.

In 1873 he came to Adams county, Iowa, and settled on 160 acres of land in section 23, Lincoln township. For a number of years he resided on the farm, continuing his medical practice. In December, 1889, he located in Carbon where he could better attend to his professional duties. As a skillful physician he has won for himself an enviable position, and enjoys an extensive and lucrative practice.

Dr. Amdor has been twice married. At the age of twenty-three he wedded Miss Rhoda Givan, daughter of William Givan of Dearborn county, Indiana. She died in June, 1885, leaving a son William, now sixteen years of age and a member of the Carbon band. In July, 1886, he was united in marriage with Miss Mira Sterns of Lincoln township, Adams county, Iowa. She was born in Allamakee county, Iowa, daughter of M. M. Sterns, late of Adams county. She, however, was reared in Shelby county, this State. Her mother is now a resident of Cumberland, Iowa. Their union has been blessed with four children, Jessie and Jennie (twins) and Charles and an infant daughter.

Mrs. Amdor is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In politics the Doctor affiliates with the Democratic party.

Millard F. Anderson, blacksmith at Corning, was born in 1850, in Pennsylvania, the fifth child and eldest son in the family of seven children of Richard and Ruanna (Kirkpatrick) Anderson, natives also of that State. The father, a blacksmith also by trade, and noted for being an uncompromising temperance man, died in March, 1890, greatly mourned by the community. The mother is still living in Nebraska. The parents moved to DeKalb county, Illinois, when Millard was but eleven years of age. When still comparatively young the subject of this sketch began to learn the trade of blacksmithing, and followed it in Illinois until 1879, when he came to Adams county, and has since continued in the business with the exception of two years, when he was in Omaha.

In his politics he is a stalwart republican. In 1872 he began the study of Freemasonry, and was initiated into the order at Shabbona Grove, Illinois, and he has taken successive steps at Creston, this State.

His first wife died in 1879, the mother of three children: Gracie, Willie and Delia. The last mentioned died at the age of two years. In 1880 Mr. Anderson was again married, this time to Miss Electa Wilson.

George W. Anthony, contractor and builder at Corning, was born in Bureau county, Illinois, near Wyanet, the son of M. D., a farmer, and Jane (Kinney) Anthony, natives of the State of New York, and still living, now in Adair county, Iowa, whither they moved when George was fourteen years old. After completing his school days at the academy at Fontenelle, this State, he resumed farming on his own account, but soon began to learn the carpenter's trade. In 1882 he located in Corning and has since followed his trade here, but has added to it the taking of contracts for building and the lumber trade. In both these lines he has had eminent success, as he is so reliable. The lumber trade he began this year (1891), and he is carrying a complete stock of all that is needed in this section of the country.

In 1880 he married Miss Mary I. Madison, of Madison county, Iowa, and they have two girls, Luella and Edna Pearl. Mr. and Mrs. Anthony are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and in his political views Mr. Anthony is a Republican.

J. R. Arnold who lives on section 18, Colony township; was born in Kentucky, May 8, 1851. His father was C. B. Arnold, born in Kentucky, July 25, 1828; he died in October, 1889. The mother's name before marriage was Mary Carpenter. They were the parents of thirteen children, of whom Mr. Arnold is the eldest. He lived in Kentucky until he was eleven years of age, when he removed to Jones county, Iowa, with his parents. He came to Carroll county in 1872, and lived there until his removal to Adams county in the year 1874, when he settled near the town of Nevinville, but has since removed to his present location.

Mr. Arnold has 240 acres of land in section 18, adapted to general farming and stock-raising. The house is 30 x 22 feet, one and a half stories high. The barn is 32 x 34 feet, and there are stock scales, windmill, granaries, etc. There are about 200 apple trees, and three acres of artificial grove. Mr. Arnold in politics is a Republican. He has had no political aspirations, but has served on the school board. He has a fine herd of cattle, and quite a number of high grade Norman and Clydesdale horses; also Poland-China hogs. He is one of the substantial men of the county, and enjoys the respect and confidence of the people.

He was married December 13, 1875, to Miss Alice Gibson, of this county. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

G. A. Avrill was born in Oakland Norfolk county, Canada, May 9, 1838. He is a son of Thomas and Frances (Flewelling) Avrill, the former a native of Connecticut, of English ancestry, and the latter of New York, of Welsh extraction. The youth of our subject was spent on a farm where he did the lighter work which falls to the lot of a farmer's son, and attended the common school. At the age of fifteen years he was engaged as clerk in a dry-goods and grocery store, and followed this business for seven years. In 1863 he came to Iowa, and January 4, 1864, he enlisted in Company C, Sixteenth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and went to the defence of the flag of his country. He participated in many battles and sieges; was with Sherman on his march to the sea, back through the Carolinas to Washington, where he took part in the grand review. He was mustered out of the service at Louisville, Kentucky, and was honorably discharged at Davenport, Iowa, July 17, 1865. He then went to De Witt, Clinton county, Iowa, and engaged in the practice of dentistry, for which profession he had fitted himself previous to entering the army. He remained in this place for five years, after which he practiced in Ottumwa for two years. In 1873 he came to Corning, Adams county, Iowa, and again engaged in the practice of his profession. In connection he has been interested in the sale of agricultural implements; he also owns and conducts a large stock farm three miles from Corning. In his undertakings he has been highly successful, and by his honorable and upright dealings he has won the confidence and esteem of the entire community.

Dr. Avrill was first married in October, 1866, to Miss Elizabeth Shoemaker, by which union seven children were born, six of whom still survive: Ella F., the wife of W. F. McGill; Adello, chief clerk in the loan department of the Globe Savings Bank, Chicago; May, Florence, Grace and Frank. Mrs. Avrill departed this life January 27, 1881. The Doctor was married a second time September 5, 1881, to Mrs. Helen Alexander, a daughter of William and Jane (Jones) Smith, and a native of Steuben county, New York. By her first marriage Mrs. Avrill had three children: John, Jennie and George. Jennie is the wife of John M. Widner, acting president of the First National Bank of Corning; John is engaged in the furniture business in the same town, and George is a railroad employee. By the last marriage there are two children, - Ida Louise and Wallace S. The Doctor is a member of Eagle Lodge, No. 27, F. & A. M., and has also taken the thirty-second degree in Scottish-rite Masonry. He also belongs to the Grand Army of the Republic. Politically he affiliates with the Republican party.