Biographical History of Montgomery and Adams Counties, Iowa.
Unless otherwise noted, the following biographies were submitted by Dick Barton.
Ballantyne, who resides on section 23, Quincy township, is one of the well-known
citizens of this county. He settled on his present farm in the spring of 1876,
although no improvements had been made on the place when he purchased it in
1875. He was born in Canada in 1844, a son of James Ballantyne, a native of
Scotland, who emigrated to Canada with his family from Scotland. He died
December 17, 1888. The mother is still living, residing in Poweshiek county,
Iowa, where the family settled a number of years ago.
Ballantyne came to Scott county, Iowa, in 1865, and worked there for two years.
He later owned and improved a farm in Poweshiek county. He was married in
Michigan to Miss Charlotte Miller, a native of Canada. Mr. Ballantyne came here
from Poweshiek county. He and his wife have six children, three sons and three
daughters: George, Mary, Frank, Byron, Maggie, Edna.
D. Ballantyne, of section 27, Prescott township (postoffice Corning), is one of
the intelligent, [enterprising] and successful farmers of that township, and has
made his home there since the spring of 1876. He was born near Glasgow,
Scotland, February 4, 1840, the son of James Ballantyne, a native of Scotland,
who married Ellen Douglas. In 1843 the family settled at Smith's Falls, Canada.
Ballantyne, whose name introduces this sketch, was reared a farmer's boy. In
1861 he came to Davenport, Iowa, and two years later he moved to Poweshiek
county, this State, where he finally died at the age of eighty-two years. He was
a farmer all his life and in religious sentiment a Presbyterian. His widow, who
survives him, lives in Brooklyn and is now eighty-three years old. They reared
four sons and five daughters. One son, Andrew, lives in Quincy township. In 1876
Mr. Ballantyne came to Adams county and purchased wild prairie land at $10 per
acre; he now owns one of the best farms in Prescott township, consisting of 180
acres. His dwelling is 16 x 30 feet in ground area and one and a half stories
high, with an L fourteen feet square. The residence is located on a natural
building site, surrounded by a grove and orchard of two or three acres of small
fruits, and there are good stables and other improvements all in good order. His
cattle are of the Polled Angus breed, and his horses are of a high-grade draft.
politics Mr. Ballantyne is a Republican, zealous and able in the defense of his
party. He, and his wife and two daughters are members of the Presbyterian Church
Ballantyne was first married to Miss Caroline, daughter of Elihu and Henrietta
Adams, and had one child, Anna, who died in childhood. He afterward married
Hester De Pencier, March 6, 1871. She was a daughter of Uriah and Hannah
(Eastman) De Pencier, natives of Leeds county, Canada. By the present marriage
there are four children; Nettie, a successful school teacher; Ella D., Edson and
S. Barker, an enterprising farmer of section 22, Nodaway township, was born in
Perry county, Ohio, January 30, 1835, the son of Samuel Barker, who was born at
Cayuga Lake, New York, the son of John Barker, a native of New England. John
married Miss Chamberlain. His grandfather was one of three brothers who
emigrated from England to New England. The maiden name of the mother of C. S.
was Elizabeth Straight; she was a daughter of William Straight; and her mother's
name before marriage was Miss Immel, and she was of Pennsylvania Dutch ancestry.
Samuel Barker had six sons and five daughters, eight of whom are now living.
Three of the sons were in the army; James and John were in the Sixty-second Ohio
Volunteer Infantry; James died in June, 1866, from disease contracted in the
United States service. Joseph was a member of the Thirty-first Ohio Volunteer
Infantry, and now lives in Crawford county, Illinois. John lives in Mercer
county, Ohio. The parents resided in Ohio until their death, both past sixty
years. The father was a farmer all his life. In politics he was a Democrat until
the war, since which time he has been a zealous Republican. In religion he was
an active member and class- leader of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
C. S. Barker, our subject, was brought up on an Ohio farm. In 1859 he moved to
Crawford county, Illinois; in 1871 to Van Buren county, Iowa, being on the road
during the great Chicago fire of October 9-11, that autumn; and in 1872 he came
to Adams county and located upon the place he now occupies, which was then land
entirely wild. It now contains 120 acres. He has a new residence, 16x24 feet in
dimensions and built on a stone foundation. The L is 14x16 feet.
Barker was married in Fairfield county, Ohio, to Miss Lucretia Siniff, who was
born and reared in that county, a daughter of Jacob Siniff, and they have three
children living, viz.: Dora A., Charles O. and Silus W., - all at their parental
home. Besides, two children died, - Cora Ellen and Alice Belle, both of whom
died at the age of three years. The great loss of Mr. Barker's life has been
that of his beloved life companion, which occurred July 8, 1888. She was a
consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and a kind wife and mother.
Mr. Barker has been a member of the church for over forty years, and for several
years was class-leader. Dora and Charles O. are also worthy members of the same
church. In politics Mr. Barker is a Democrat.
Barker, a pioneer of Adams county, Iowa, was born in Clayton township, Perry
county, Ohio, January 18, 1841. His father, Richard Barker, born in the same
township, was a son of John Barker, born in New Jersey, son of Samuel Barker.
Samuel Barker was one of four brothers who came from England to America before
the Revolutionary war. He participated in that struggle, went home sick and died
soon afterward. One brother was named William, and the names of the other two
are not known. John Barker was one of the early settlers of Ohio. He married
Mary Chamberlain, a daughter of Irish parents, the maiden name of her mother
having been Mulford. Their son, Richard, father of George Barker, was reared in
Perry county, Ohio, and there married Elizabeth Strait, who was born in Bedford
county, Pennsylvania, and reared in Ohio. Her parents were Peter and Catherine
(Myers) Strait. April 17, 1860, Richard Barker lef[t] Perry county, Ohio, for
Iowa; crossed the Mississippi river May 12, and on the 21st of the same month
arrived at Quincy, then the county seat of Adams county, Iowa. He located on
wild land in Douglas township, section 36, and there made his home until March
10, 1879, when he moved to Harrison county, Missouri. At the latter place he
died on the 28th of May, 1882. His widow still lives on the old farm where he
died, and is now seventy-one years of age. They had a family of eight children,
five of whom [r]eached adult years, namely: George, whose name heads this
biography; Maria Guysinger, of Nodaway county, Missouri; Melki, of Douglas
township, this county; Milton, who resides with his mother in Harrison county,
Missouri; and Clara, wife of Charles Snethen, also of Harrison county, Missouri.
The three deceased ones are Jemima, wife of Isaac H. Morris, of Portland,
Oregon, who died leaving one child, Evered Morris; and Albert, who died at the
age of ten years, and Frank, at eighteen months. Richard Barker was a farmer all
his life; in politics a Democrat, and in religion a member of the Methodist
Episcopal Church. He was a man in every respect deserving of the honor and
esteem he received from all who knew him.
Barker grew up on a farm and received his education in the common schools of his
native county. He was twenty years of age when he came with his father to Adams
county. During the war he enlisted here, August 9, 1862, in the Twenty-Third
Iowa Infantry, Captain George's company, and served some three years,
participating in many important engagements. He was honorably discharged at
Harrisburg, Texas, July 27, 1865; returned to Iowa and was paid off at
Davenport. He then came back to Adams county and engaged in agricultural
pursuits. He improved a farm in section 1, Nodaway township, and lived on it for
nine years. In May, 1875, he took up his abode on his present farm, in section
26, Douglas township, which was then wild land. He has spent his time and energy
in improving and cultivating this farm since that time, with the exception of
ten months spent in the mercantile business in Carbon. He owns 100 acres with
good buildings, orchard, grove and other improvements.
Barker was married June 24, 1866, at Quincy, Iowa, to Mary Malinda Bean, who was
born in Carroll county, Ohio, and reared in Van Buren and Adams counties, Iowa.
Her parents, Benjamin and Elizabeth (Sherrol) Bean, were born in Ohio. Nine
children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Barker, viz.: Elizabeth, who is engaged
in teaching; John Albert, Francis Augustus, George Frederick, Ella Belle, James
Richard, Charles Alonzo, Benjamin Ford and Joseph William.
politics Mr. Barker was a Republican for twelve years, then a Greenbacker, later
a Democrat, and now an Independent. He has served as trustee, assessor and clerk
of his township. He is a member of the United Brethren Church, is a class-leader
and Sabbath-school superintendent, and in 1888 was licensed as a local preacher.
His wife and two daughters are also members of the church. Mr. Barker is
associated with Llewellyn Post, G. A. R.
Barnett, of section 10, Douglas township, Adams county, was born February 22,
1814, in Washington county, Pennsylvania. He is the son of John Barnett, a
Scotch-Irishman, born in the north of Ireland, and Margaret (Laferty) Barnett,
and is one of a family of four sons and four daughters, all of whom have passed
away save the subject of our sketch. The parents died in Belmont county, Ohio,
they having moved to that place when John was a babe in arms. There he lived
until he was twenty. He then went to Richland county, Ohio. He received his
education in the public schools of the Buckeye State, and in his younger days
was engaged in teaching for several terms. In 1850 he made the overland trip to
California, and for two years gave his attention to mining and mercantile
pursuits in the Golden State, with fair success.
1854 Judge Barnett came to Adams county, Iowa, and settled where he now resides.
He was married the same year to Miss Elizabeth Wolf. They have had no children
of their own, but have been father and mother to three little ones left to their
care: Barnett L. Jones was left without a mother when a young child; he was
taken by Judge and Mrs. Barnett and reared to manhood; he is now a dealer in
general merchandise in Carbon, Iowa; Jessie and Emma, two nieces, were left
motherless in infancy and found a home with our subject and wife; they have
grown to maturity and Jessie is married to Morris T. Campbell, a prosperous
business man, now postmaster of Carbon, Iowa; Emma is at home, surrounded by all
the comforts of life.
Judge owns 1,400 acres of land which is among the finest tracts in the county,
and by many is regarded as the finest. It is well adapted to general farming,
producing good crops of everything raised in this latitude. It is also well
fitted for stock-raising. His commodious two-story residence is beautifully
locate on a natural building site. On his land are numerous houses for his
tenants, of whom he has several. He has two large barns, each 60 x 40 feet,
[besides] a number of outbuildings. In fact, all the conveniences of a well-kept
farm are found here. He has twelve acres in orchard and five acres of artificial
grove. The Judge has given much attention to the raising of fine stock. He has a
herd of graded shorthorn cattle; is engaged in breeding Cleveland Bays, having a
fine imported stallion of that breed; raises Poland-China hogs; and has
heretofore engaged largely in sheep-raising, having usually about 800 head.
1855 John Barnett was elected County of Probate Judge, and served one term. He
has served on the Board of Supervisors, been Justice of the Peace, Township
Clerk etc. In politics he was and is still a Democrat. During the war he
tendered his services to the Government, but was never mustered into the
service. Judge Barnett is well preserved for one of his age, although he has had
two partial strokes of paralysis. A man of the strictest integrity, always
genial and courteous, he has a limitless circle of friends and truly merits the
respect and esteem he receives from all who know him.
better farmer, perhaps, is to be found in Adams county than the subject of this
sketch. He is a true Irishman, remodeled on the American plan. He knows a good
farm, has made one and understands keeping it in order. As a progressive and
enterprising citizen he has few equals in his township.
Barry was born in county Wicklow, Ireland, November 7, 1825. He came from the
Emerald Isle to America in 1866, landing in Quebec and going from there to
Utica, New York, being accompanied by his wife and seven months old child. In
Utica he worked three years and a half in a woolen factory. In 1870 he came to
Clinton county, Iowa, and farmed on one place eight years. He then came to Adams
county, to the place where he now resides in Washington township. First he
bought eighty acres, to which he subsequently added three other eighties, the
whole comprising a half section of Adams county's richest soil. Here he is
engaged in general farming and stock-raising. His house is conveniently located
on the section road, and is sheltered and beautified by a fine grove.
Ireland, January 7, 1865, Mr. Barry wedded Miss Catherine Smith, daughter of
Patrick and Lucy Smith, both of whom died on their native Isle. Ten children
have been added to this union, six of whom are living, as follows: Anna, wife of
T. T. Waters; Sarah, wife of T. S. Hatton, has two children, William and Thomas;
Patrick, James, Katie and Michael.
Mr. and Mrs. Barry are members of the Catholic Church. In politics he is Democratic.
ARTHUR M BEYMER, hardware merchant, Corning, was born in Seneca county, Ohio, in May, 1844, a son of Arthur S. and Ruth (Skinner) Beymer, natives of Ohio. The mother was of English ancestry, and the father was a farmer brought up in the Western Reserve, came to Union county, Iowa, in 1870, and died in 1872. His mother is still living, at Afton, Iowa, at the age of ninety years. They reared ten children.
Mr. Beymer was educated at the Seneca Academy and spent one year at the Ohio Wesleyan University at Delaware; then returned to farming for a time; next was a year in commercial business at Clyde, Ohio, and then, in 1869, he came to Corning, Iowa, where he engaged in the lumber trade fifteen years, selling lumber for nearly all the fine houses in the vicinity; and he was one of the prime movers of the Blue Grass League, organized to produce blue grass in one of the finest regions in the world, he being one of the early discoverers of the elements required in a good blue grass soil. Quitting the lumber trade, he engaged in the hardware business, in which he still continues. He has acquired some good pieces of land in the vicinity of town. He was a member of the City Board of Trustees when the electric lights and water-works were established; was also a member of the School Board thirteen years, during which time the public school buildings and the academy were erected; and he has been a trustee of the Corning Academy.
He was married, in 1865,
to Miss Amine L. Strickland, of Clyde, Ohio, and they have had four
children, including one daughter, who died when young. He is a member
of Instruction Lodge, No. 275, F. and A. M.; of Eureka Chapter, R. A.
M., and of the Presbyterian Church, as is also his wife. In politics
he is a Republican.
Bishop is a native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, born November 12, 1847, the son of
Samuel and Elizabeth Bishop, natives of Canada. His parents were among the early
settlers of Milwaukee. The mother died in 1868 and the father, in 1890, the
latter at the age of seventy-eight years. Albert was reared in town, received a
common school education, and during his youth was variously employed. He learned
the trade of a painter, which he followed for some time at Appleton, Wisconsin.
the late war Mr. Bishop enlisted in April, 1865, in the Fifty- third Wisconsin
Infantry Volunteers, Company K, and did his part in helping to put down the
rebellion. He was with his regiment stationed most of the time on the Iron
Mountain railroad in Missouri and Arkansas. In August, 1865, he was honorably
discharged, after which he returned to Wisconsin.
1878 Mr. Bishop moved to Ogle county, Illinois, and subsequently to Winnebago
county, same state. In 1880 he settled on his present farm in section 23, Carl
township, Adams county, Iowa. This farm, 120 acres, he had purchased in 1875
when it was wild land. It is now improved with good buildings, orchard, etc.,
and on it he is engaged in general farming and stock-raising.
Mr. Bishop was married, October 5, 1880, to Miss Alverda Jane Mily, a native of Whiteside county, Illinois, and a daughter of Jesse and Jane Mily. Her father was born in Ohio, is forty-nine years old, and was a soldier in the late war. Mr. and Mrs. Bishop have two children, Mary Alice and Frank Elmer. Mr. Bishop is in politics a Republican, as was also his father.
SAMUEL BOOKER, a resident of section 13, Douglas township, Adams county, is an early settler of this neighborhood. He located here in 1860, and has since made this place his home. His biography will be found of interest to many, and is herewith given:
Samuel Booker was born in Queen Anne's county, Maryland , February 3, 1818 , a son of John and Susan (Baker) Booker, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of Maryland . John Booker's parents were Germans, and his father, Samuel Booker, was a soldier in the Revolutionary war and was with General Washington when he crossed the Delaware bay . Samuel was left an orphan at the age of seven years, his parents both dying the same week, leaving a family of five children. Our subject found a home with Peter Swiggitt, was reared on a farm and received a limited education. At the age of twenty-one he began work at the carpenter's trade, which he has followed most [of] his life until the past few years, when he has been retired from active work. In the fall of 1838 he moved to Fayette county, Indiana, where he lived three years. He then traveled through the South, Mississippi , Louisiana and Alabama , returning to Fayette county in August, 1842. In 1846 he moved to Wabash county, Indiana, and made his home there until 1854. That year he located in Galena , Jo Daviess county, Illinois , and engaged in contracting and building and erected some of the best buildings in the place. The years 1858-59 he lived in Warren, that county. In 1860 he came to Adams county and settled on land he had purchased some years before. He built a log house, 15 x 16 feet, and in it made his home until 1873, when he built his present two-story residence. His home is located on a beautiful building site and is surrounded with pines, ornamental trees, shrubs, etc. He has an orchard of two acres and a half, a grove and other improvements. His farm contains 135 acres.
Mr. Booker was married October 18, 1845 , in Rush county, Indiana, to Elizabeth Willson, who was born in Delaware , May 7, 1821 , daughter of John and Maria (Slaughter) Willson. Her father was born in Delaware , and her mother in Halifax , Nova Scotia , of Scotch and English parents. Mr. and Mrs. Booker have nine children, namely; Robert, Council Bluffs, Iowa; Anna, wife of Henry Rice, Des Moines, Iowa; Lewis, Council Bluffs; Ella, wife of Abram Horton, of Douglas township, this county, was before her marriage an efficient teacher; Susan, of Creston, Iowa; William, who lives on his father's farm; Edgar, a brickmason by trade, now residing in Washington; Alma, wife of Allen Hibbard of Council Bluffs; Ida, wife of George McCormick of Omaha; they have two children deceased, Sarah, who died at the age of thirteen months, and Maria Jane, at the age of seven years.
During the war [of] the Rebellion Mr. Booker enlisted August 13, 1862 , in Company D, Twenty-ninth Iowa Infantry, and was honorably discharged November 26, 1862 , for disability. Politically he is a Republican. He and his wife are members of the United Brethren Church , and are honored and respected citizens in the community in which they reside.
A. Brittan was born near Dodgeville, Wisconsin, April 19, 1851, the son of
Francis Brittan, deceased, a prominent early settler of Adams county, Iowa. The
latter was born in London, England, son of John Brittan, a merchant of that
city. He was reared, received a college education and obtained a business
experience in London, and was married to Louisa Gates, also a native of England.
He came on a sail vessel to New York, and on the voyage encountered numerous
storms, both crew and passengers suffering much from hunger before they reached
port. For years Francis Brittan was employed as follows: at first obtained a
situation in New York; with a stock of fine laces and notions as samples, he
became the first commercial traveler in the United States; was engaged in
business at Syracuse, New York; conducted a business in La Layette, Indiana, and
during the panic of 1835 failed; went to Dodge county, Wisconsin, bought 640
acres of land and engaged in agricultural pursuits, and later in a mercantile
business at Dodgeville. It was while he was a resident of the latter place that
the subject of our sketch was born. From Dodgeville, in 1857, the Brittan family
moved to Burlington, Kansas, when there were only four houses in the town, and
the father became one of the first business men of that place. They subsequently
moved to Liberty, Missouri, where he engaged in the dry-goods business, and
still later located in Missouri City. During the war he left that State and took
up his abode in Galesburg, Illinois, where he turned his attention to the
hardware business. Disposing of his interests there, he moved to Warren county,
Illinois, bought a farm and built a grist mill; thence to Monmouth, same State,
where he did a grocery business; and thence to Mount Pleasant, Iowa. His next
and last move was to Adams county. Here he bought 615 acres of land, made his
home and developed a fine farm. His wife died at Riverton, Fremont county, Iowa,
in 1871, aged sixty- five years. Francis Brittan died at Arlington Springs, near
Topeka, Kansas, at the age of eighty-five. He was there on a visit to his
daughter, and with a party of friends and relatives was out in a boat. The boat
upset and a nephew and niece and another young lady were drowned. The shock and
exposure brought on a nervous prostration from which the old gentleman never
recovered. He was a member of the Baptist Church, and was in politics a
Republican. He and his wife were the parents of thirteen children, eight of whom
are now living, viz.: Arthur Brittan, of Beloit, Wisconsin, a commercial
traveler; Frank, a resident of California; Hatty McClure, also of California;
Edward, a commercial traveler; Clara, wife of James Beard, Pittsburgh,
Pennsylvania; Clifford, of Custer county, Nebraska; L. A., the subject of this
sketch; and Laura Dix, of Colony township, Adams county, Iowa.
A. Brittan grew to manhood in the different places where his father lived,
assisted him in his various enterprises, and received his education in the
public schools. February 27, 1874, in Douglas township, this county, he was
united in marriage with Miss Ollie Moore, daughter of Benjamin and Margaret
Moore, prominent mention of whom will be found on another page of this work.
Nine children have been born to them, as follows: Nell E., Annis L., Clara
Augusta, Ollie Rosa (who died at the age of seven years), Ed. F., Arthur, Carrie
M., Luther Alfred and Paul H.
Brittan farm is located on section 3, and is one of the best in Douglas
township. It is well fenced, has a good two-story house, substantial barn and
other improvements. Coal is found here in abundance, 50,000 bushels being taken
from the place annually.
and Mrs. Brittan are members of the Baptist Church, and are distinguished for
their genial hospitality to all. Mr. Brittan is a Republican.
Isaac Brokaw, a
farmer and stockraiser of section 15, Mercer township, has been identified
with the interests of Adams county since 1869.
He is a native of Ohio, born
in Belmont county, January 21, 1840, a son of John and Elizabeth (Scott) Brokaw.
The former was a native of Ohio, and a son of Abraham Brokaw, who was born in New Jersey and a descendant
of Hollanders; the latter was a
native of Pennsylvania, a daughter of James Scott,
and of Irish and German descent. The
parents were among the pioneers of
Belmont county, and the father still lives at Mt. Vernon, Linn
county, Iowa, at the age of eighty-four years.
L. Brown, a farmer of section 5, Jasper township, Adams county (postoffice)
Brooks), and an old soldier and a solid man of the community, was born in Mercer
county, Illinois, June 23, 1839, the son of John H. Brown, who was born in
Rochester, New York, and when a lad of sixteen years was a soldier in the war of
1812. His father, Alexander Brown, was born in Scotland, and when a youth he
left his native country in order to avoid participation in the Irish rebellion,
but became a brave soldier in our Revolutionary war. Mr. B. L. Brown's mother,
whose name before marriage was Mary McPherson, was born in Mercer county,
Pennsylvania, the daughter of George McPherson, a native of Ireland, who also
had served in the American war of the Revolution. His wife made powder for the
American soldiers. The father of our subject, John H. Brown, was reared in New
York State and moved to Muskingum county, Ohio, where he was married, at the age
of twenty-four years, in 1820, his bride at the time being but fourteen years of
age. About 1836 the family removed to Mercer county, Illinois. John H. Brown had
seven children in Ohio and six in Illinois, - thirteen in all, - ten sons and
three daughters. He died in 1874, and his wife in 1885.
the above family of children the ninth in order of birth was Mr. B. L. Brown,
our subject. In 1862 he enlisted in Company H, Eighty-fourth Illinois Volunteer
Infantry, and participated in the battles of Perryville, Stone River, Beech
Grove, Manchester, Lookout Mountain (under General Thomas), Chickamauga,
Missionary Ridge and all the engagements as far as Atlanta, including those of
the Atlanta campaign. At Stone River he was wounded by a gunshot in the left
shoulder, and also at Chickamauga by a minie-ball in his leg; but he remained
with his company until scurvy set in and compelled him to go to the hospital for
five months; and then he returned home.
1880 he came to Adams county and purchased the Lorin C. Hughes farm of 247
acres, one of the best in the county for the raising of grain and live-stock. He
has built a fine house, 24 x 34 feet, two stories high; and he also has one of
the best orchards in the county, on which he has taken all the premiums and
sweepstakes, and the prizes at the county fair of 1889. He, of course, devotes
his attention to general farming and stock-raising. On national questions he is
a Republican. He has served as assessor and president of the School Board for
ten years. He is a member of Llewellyn Post, No. 284, G. A. R. With wife and
several of the children he is a member of the Christian Church at Brooks.
has married December 24, 1856, before he was eighteen years of age, to Miss
Helen Preston, at Aledo, Mercer county, Illinois. She was the daughter of Lewis
Preston, who was born in Butler county, Ohio, of English ancestry, and settled
in Freeport in 1838, as a pioneer, and died in 1863. His widow is still living,
having now made her home with B. L. Brown, our subject, for the last twenty-five
years. Mr. and Mrs. Brown have had thirteen children, eight of whom are living,
namely: Lewis, Laura, Amanda, Essie, Lydia, Harry, Charles and Willie. Two
children died in infancy; two, Fannie and Melissa, when several years of age;
and one, Lizzie, in her twenty-fourth year.
M. Brown, who resides on section 18, Jasper township, has a farm of of 380 acres
on this and section 13, Nodaway township. He purchased this place at different
times and of different parties, and it is now one of the finest stock farms in
Adams county. It is well watered by the East Nodaway creek, and also by a fine
spring near his residences. He makes a specialty of stock, and now has forty
head of horses, about the same number of cattle, and from seventy-five to one
hundred head of hogs. He intends to continue in the stock business and also to
Brown was born in Muskingum county, Ohio, in 1830, the son of John H. Brown, one
of the pioneers of that county. In 1836 he removed with his family to Mercer
county, Illinois, where he lived until his death. His wife, the mother of our
subject, Mary McPhersen, survived her husband a number of years, but is now
deceased. She died at the age of eighty years, and her husband at the age of
seventy-four. They had a family of thirteen children, and all but one son, who
died at the age of twelve years, lived to years of maturity. There are nine of
the family living at this writing, seven sons and two daughters. Alexander, the
eldest child, lives in Mercer county, Illinois; George died many years ago,
leaving a wife and two children; John is a resident of Nodaway township; Sarah
Jane is deceased, having died in her twentieth year; James M., our subject;
William, a resident of Prescott, Adams county; Daniel died at the age of twelve
years; Hugh lives in Mercer county, Illinois; Benjamin L., of Jasper township,
Adams county; Josiah F. lives in Mercer county; Francis M. was killed in the war
of the Rebellion, a member of the Eighty-fourth Illinois; Mary lives in
Illinois, the wife of Josiah McClan; Joanna, wife of Squire Williams, resides in
M. Brown was married in Illinois, in 1855, to Miss Jerusha Reed, a native of
Indiana, but who removed with her parents when but a year old to Mercer county
Illinois. Mr. Brown continued to live in Mercer county until he came to Adams
county in the fall of 1879. Mr. and Mrs. Brown have thirteen children, six sons
and seven daughters.
Brown resides on section 12, Nodaway township, where he settled in 1874. His
farm, which is on sections 11 and 14, contains 125 acres. He was born in
Muskingum county, Ohio, in February, 1826, the son of John H. and Mary (McPheren)
Brown, the former a native of Seneca county, New York, and the latter of
Pennsylvania, and both were settlers of Muskingum county, Ohio. The father was
of Scotch descent, and the son of Alexander Brown, a native of Scotland. The
maternal grandfather of the subject of this sketch was George McPheren, a native
Brown, our subject, has been three times married. His first wife was Levina
Libbie. The second was Mary James, who died in Nodaway township in April, 1875.
His present wife was Mrs. Sarah E. Myers; her maiden name was Sarah E. Purdum.
She was born in Perry county, Ohio, in 1841, and is the daughter of Levi B. and
Sarah (Harrison) Purdum. Sarah Purdum was the daughter of Nathan and Mary
Harrison, natives of England. The paternal grand parents were natives of Wales.
Mr. Brown is the father of twelve living children, and the brother of James H.
Brown, of Jasper township.
G. Brown, a well and favorably known farmer of section 28, Nodaway township, was
born in Highland county, Ohio, near Hillsboro, the county seat, December 5,
1855, the son of Rev. Thomas D. Brown, a highly esteemed, early settler, who did
much for the cause of Christianity. He married Mary E. Williams, a native of
Virginia, of which her father was also a native. Rev. Thomas D. Brown was a
native of Virginia, a son of John Brown, who served in the war of 1812. He was
in early life a saddler and harness- maker; at length he came to Iowa, where he
spent the remainder of his days farming and preaching the Gospel. The Brown
family lived in Ohio until 1866, when they came to Adams county, Iowa, and in
1872 to the place where they still reside, near the subject of this sketch. They
had twelve children - six sons and six daughters. One son, John, was a member of
Company A, Eighty-Ninth Ohio Volunnteer Infantry, in the late war, and is now a
dentist at Clarinda, this State. Another son, James, was the Recorder for Page
county for eight years.
Samuel G. Brown, whose name introduces this sketch, was the youngest child in
the above large family. He grew up to manhood on the farm near here, remaining
with his parents until his marriage. He first bought, in 1887, forty acres of
land, of Samuel Kennedy, and has purchased more since then, so that he now owns
180 acres. It is rich land and well improved. His dwelling is 15 x 30, with an L
12 x 14. The yards and premises generally are neat and well equipped. Mr. Brown
devotes his attention to general farming and stock-raising. On national
questions he is a Republican, but never aspired to office. Both himself and wife
belong to the Methodist Episcopal Church, and are active in its Sunday- school.
was married in this county, in December, 1878, to Miss Hattie Larison, a
well-cultured lady from Ohio. Their three children are Wilma E., Jesse B. and
Bycroft, a successful farmer and favorably known citizen of section 36, Nodaway
township, bought land there of the railroad in 1873, and two years afterward
broke it, and since 1876 he has resided there.
was born in Lincolnshire, England, May 1, 1833, a son of John and Eliza (Ward)
Bycroft, natives also of that shire. His father was a laboring man all his life,
and reared to years of maturity four sons and two daughters, three of whom
emigrated to the United States and three remained in England. Mr. Bycroft, our
subject, sailed from Liverpool in 1866 to New York, and went to Henderson
county, Illinois, where he had a brother living, and was employed there two
years in ditching, well- digging and in hedging. The brothers bought a team and
farming outfit, and worked rented farms till 1876, when our subject came to
Adams county. For his present farm he paid $16 an acre for a portion, and $14 an
acre for the rest. He first built a small frame house, which is now used for a
kitchen. His present residence he built in 1890. It is a fine modern house, 16 x
20 feet in ground area, with 14-foot posts, and well arranged, in Southern
style, and nicely situated on a natural building site a few rods from the road,
and surrounded with a beautiful grove of trees, - maple, cottonwood, Lombardy
poplar, box-elder and elm. There is also an orchard of small fruit, barn and
other outbuildings and farm conveniences. He owns 180 acres of land,
constituting one of the best farms in the neighborhood.
the age of twenty-four years, in Lincolnshire, England, he married Jane Proctor,
a daughter of Richard and Eliza Proctor, and they have four sons and two
daughters, namely: Eliza, John, William, Anna, Eddy and George.
his political sympathies Mr. Bycroft is with the "Greenback" party. He
and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.