IAGenWeb Project

Adair County Iowa

USGenWeb Project



Residents of Eureka Township 1976 (part 2)


Alexander Tharp was born in Morgan County, Indiana, April 3, 1962, a son of Robert and Mary Jane (Hutcheson) Tharp.  In 1866 the Robert Tharp family came to Iowa in a covered wagon and settled on a farm in Guthrie County, northwest of Casey.

As a lad, Alexander spent his youthful days attending the public schools, and in the periods of vacation, working as a farm hand.  When he reached the age of twenty-two, and began farming on his own, he rented land for four or five years.  Ultimately he purchased a farm in Guthrie County on which he lived for twelve years.

On January 5, 1887, Alexander was united in marriage with Miss Hattie M. Boblett, who died May 22, 1889, leaving a son, Robert J., who was born December 2, 1888.

On March 9, 1891, Alexander married Jane M. Boblett, a sister of his former wife.  Jane passed away August 15, 1892.

Alexander married his third wife, Ida A. Hemphill, a daughter of James and Ellen Hemphill, in June, 1896.  Ida was born April 4, 1867, in Cass County, Iowa.  Alexander and Ida had two children, Glen A., born February 12, 1899, and Verva M., born July 26, 1903.

In 1901, Alexander and his family moved from their farm in Guthrie County to Eureka Township and purchased the SW ¼ S 15, T76 R33.  This quarter section was patented from the United States to Levi Goodpaster. October 1, 1857.  The homestead included a small house and barn, and a crib.  Alexander and his family built a wash house and lived that, with their beds in the hay loft of the barn, until they were able to tear down the old house, and build the house that is now on the farm.  Later he bought forty acres across the road from the homestead.  A section of the present barn is a part of the original building.  Alexander was engaged in grain farming, raising Herefords and Duroc Jerseys.

Alexander’s first-born, Robert J., was married to Edythe Moore February 9, 1909.  They had one child, Helen Irene, born October 16, 1912.  Robert J. Died February 28, 1918.  Helen married John Madison, and to this union three sons were born: Earnest, Leon and Gary. Helen died December 3, 1954.  Edythe Tharp now resides in Adair.        

The Tharps were members of the United Brethren Church and attended church at Eureka Center.  Alexander was a Republican and was active in local politics, serving as a township trustee for many years.  In 1914 Mr. Tharp planted a peach orchard north of the buildings.  In one season at peak production, over three hundred bushels of peaches were harvested for sale.  The orchard produced for approximately thirty-five years, in 1918, Mr. Tharp rented the farm to Arthur Linderman, anticipating his son, Glen’s induction into the Armed Services.  On March 1, 1919, he and Mrs. Tharp moved to Fontanelle onto a forty acre farm at the south edge of town, later moving to 625 Maple Street, where he died November 8, 1925.  His widow, Ida, lived until June 29, 1949.

Glen started farming the home place in 1921.  He married to Esther Jones of Cass County on January 25, 1923.  Their children are Ralph William, born May 5, 1924,and Arlene Ruth, born April 1, 1927.  Esther died February 14, 1946.

Glen was actively engaged in farming until 1953.  He served Eureka Township as Clerk for sixteen years.  He was elected to the Adair county Board of Supervisors in 1951, and served for two three-year terms.  Glen married Mary Robinson on May 26, 1953, and lived in Greenfield until 1955, when they moved to a farm in Jackson Township.  Glen served as Jackson Township trustees for fifteen years.  In 1970, they returned to Greenfield, where they now reside.

Verva, youngest child of alexander and Ida, was married to Fred Jacobson June 23, 1928.  Three sons were born to this union: Ramon, Max and Leo.  Verva passed away December 4, 1944.

Ralph Tharp attended grade school at Eureka Center and graduated from the Adair High School. 
After one semester at Parsons College in Fairfield, he enlisted in the Air Force.  Upon his return from the Air Force, serving in the Southwest Pacific as a fighter pilot, Ralph farmed in partnership with his father, Glen, until 1967, when he purchased the farm.  Ralph and Maryon L. Potter of Burlington, Wisconsin, were married October 12, 1946.  Their two children are Karol Ann, born July 19, 1947, and Robert William born March 7, 1949.  Karol is married to William Mueller, and they have two sons, Brian an Anthony, Karol and bill are now residing at Perry, and both are teaching in the Perry School System.  Robert served for four years in the United States Air Force as a pilot.  He is married to Patricia Bjorgen of Bremerton, Washington, and they now reside in Seattle.

Arlene Tharp married Melvin chestnut of Summit Township on October 12, 1948.  They reside on a farm three and one-half miles south of Adair.  They are the parents of three children:  Colleen, born June 28, 1949; Kevin, born November 25, 1951; and Christine Kay, born January 20, 1953.

In 1972, Ralph and Maryon expanded their farm by purchasing the 160 acres adjoining the land in section 16 of Eureka Township.  

The Tharp home built in 1906 by Alexander Tharp.  Photo taken in the spring of 1907.  From left to right are Robert J. Tharp, son: Alexander Tharp, father; Ida Tharp, mother, Verva May Tharp, daughter; Glen Tharp, son.   


At a public farm land auction of the Mark Thiele estate in December, 1948, Phillip R. Umbaugh and his wife, Ella, purchased the farm located one-fourth mile east of Eureka Center School in Adair County.  Mark Thiel and his wife, Edith, had owned and lived on this farm for 38 years previous to the sale.

The Umbaughs moved here from Harrison Township in Adair County, where they had been engaged in farming.  They received possession on March 1, 1949.  They had two children, Phillip and Marian.  Marian married Walter Herr and they live on a farm near Fontanelle.

Phillip married Maxine Martin, daughter of John and Florence Martin of Casey.  Prior to her marriage, Maxine was a teacher in Adair County schools.  After their marriage in August of 1953, they settled on this farm in Eureka Township where they settled on this farm in Eureka Township where they carry on a general farming operation.

Phillip and Maxine are the parents of two sons, William (Bill), a student at Iowa State University in Ames, and John, a senior at Adair-Casey High School.


Van Underwood was born in Warren County, Illinois, in January, 1870, to Rufus and Lucy (Perine) Underwood, who are natives of Illinois and Ohio.  In 1870, the father took up his abode in Madison county, Iowa, where he purchased and improved a farm and continued its operation for 1 years.

Van Underwood was reared and educated in Madison and Adair Counties, and remained with his parents until he was 24 years of age.  When a young man of 19, however, he rented land for 5 years.  At the end of that time, he purchased 80 acres in Summit Township, operating the place for eight years.  He bought 120 acres lying across the road from his father’s farm in section 17 in Eureka Township.  Besides grain farming, he fed from one to two carloads of cattle annually.

On December 25, 1895, he married to Eva Pearce, a daughter of James and Nancy (Ford) Pearce, who were natives of Ohio and Cedar County, Iowa.  Mr. and Mrs. Underwood had three children: Bernice L., Rex E., and Claire J.    

Bernice married Lloyd Croxton and they had four children: Leon, Eva Mae, Norma June, and Darlene.

Rex was married to Martha Morgan.

Claire J. (Dick) married Janet McAfee, and they have three sons, Ray, Dale and Lee.


Thomas E Young was born in Adair County, June 18, 1930, to William B. and Mildred (Hubatka) Young.  His family lived on farms in Summerset and Prussia Townships.  He attended rural grade school and Casey High School.  He graduated from Iowa State University with a B. S. degree in Ag. Education in December, 1951.

Marjorie M. (Downing) Young was born December 2, 1931, a daughter of Glen R. and May Belle (Sharon), north of Casey.  The family lived in farms in Guthrie and Adair Counties.  She attended rural grade schools and Adair High School. 

Tom and Marjorie were married December 30, 1950.  They lived in student housing at Iowa State University at Ames, where Tom finished his college work and Marjorie worked at the College Printing Department.  In December, 1951, they moved to Sulley, Iowa, where Tom finished out the school year teaching Vocational Agriculture.  In June of the same year they moved to Menlo, where Tom started a new Vocational Agriculture Department, and taught Ag. and Science for the next 10 years.

They moved to the family farm in Eureka Township during the summer of 1956, where they lived until the summer of 1962.  They purchased the farm known as the “The Old Coal Bank Farm”, in section 4 of Eureka Township in the fall of 1958.  They have made their home there since the summer of 1962.  Tom taught Science in Cumberland-Massena High School from 1963 to 1967 and in Stuart-Menlo from 1968 to 1973.   He joined the Des Moines Area Community College staff as Veterans Ag. Production instructor in June of 1973.

The Youngs have farmed the W. B. Young farm and their own farm since 1958, making numerous improvements in the land by tilling, straightening a ditch that runs through their farm, building over 1 ½ mils of diversion terraces, building all new buildings and completely remodeling the house.

Tom and Marjorie are parents of two sons, Terry Edwin, Born November 13, 1952, and Scott Alan, born March 18, 1958.  Terry graduated from Adair-Casey High School in 1970 and from Northwestern Missouri University in 1973, in Industrial Technology and Business.  He is living in San Antonio, Texas, with his wife, Susan, and daughter, Tera Sue.  Scott attended Adair-Casey High, and graduated in May, 1975.


William B. (Bert) Young was born in Page County, Iowa, on February 11, 1985, to John W. and Addie Iona (Mason) Young.  He was reared in the Coin and Clarinda vicinity.  He was a World War I veteran, enlisting on May 30, 1918.  He served overseas with Co. A, 7th Div. 56th Inf., and was on the battle front when word of the Armistice reached them.

On December 12, 1925, he was married to Mildred Hubatka in Corning, Iowa.  She was born in Adams County, near Prescott, on April 7, 1902, a daughter of Thomas and Anna (Vonasek) Hubatka, who were natives of Czechoslovakia and Adams County.  Mildred attended rural school and Creston High School.  She was an Adams County rural school teacher and was employed during the summer at the Clarinda Mental Health Hospital.  It was at this time she first met William B., who was employed in the Hospital light and power plant.

William B. and Mildred moved to Adair County in 1930 from Montgomery County, near Elliott, Iowa, where they had been engaged in a farming operation for two years.  In Adair County, they continued grain and livestock farming, including raising Purebred Hampshire Sheep, improving the flock through the years.  They exhibited at County and State Fairs, and supplied rams and ewes to breeders in many places.  The operation continued on section 1 in Summerset Township for 14 years.  In 1944 they moved to a larger farm on section 2 in Prussia Township.  Mildred taught school in Prussia No. 1 from 1946 to 1950, and in Walnut No. 7 in 1951-1952.  In 1949 they purchased 160 acres in Eureka Township on section 21 (Mervin Thiele farm), but did not move until 1952, to continue farming there.  They made numerous improvements and remodeled the home.

They are the parents of three children: Manley S., born April 12, 1928—he married   Velta Cline  on June 25, 1950 (their children are David and Kathy): Thomas (Tom), born June 18, 1930—he married Marjorie Downing on December 30, 1950 (they have two sons, Terry and Scott); Betty Ann, born July 9, 1935—she was married to Richard Schmidt on May 29, 1955 (they have three daughters, Marilyn, Connie Jo and Karla).

William B. passed away June 13, 1956.  Since then the farm has been and continues to be operated by their son, Tom.  Mildred was employed by the State Department of Social Welfare in Butler County from 1959 to 1962 and in Montgomery County from 1962 to 1967.  When she retired in the spring of 1967, she returned to her home in Eureka Township, where she resides at this time.


James Henry Law was born April 20, 1896 in Eureka Township, Adair County, Iowa, and is the second son of James Monroe Law and Mary Katherine Hepler Law.  James Monroe Law was born October 13, 1864, in Morrisburg, Whiteside County and came to Eureka Township riding a horse beside his parents ‘ covered wagon in 1873.  Mary was born on February 29, 1864, in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, and died December 13, 1929.  Monroe died June 29, 1932.  They are both buried in Greenfield cemetery.   Another son, Raymond Edgar Law, is buried in the Forest Lawn Cemetery in California.  A daughter, Iva Cosette (Mrs. Leonard O. Miller), is buried in Cedar Falls, Iowa.  James attended Highland church six miles north of Fontanelle, Lone Star No. 6  Eureka Township country school, Greenfield High School and Drake University in Des Moines.  He was drafted for World War I, May 25, 1918, and served wit6h the 351 Infantry Headquarters Company, 88th Division, joined the French in Hayta Alsace sector front lines.  The Armistice was signed at this time on the 11th month, the 11th day, and the 11th  hour a.m. 1918.

On June 2, 1920, James married Anne Belle Glade, who was born July 3, 1897, on section 33in Summerset Township, Adair County, Fontanelle, Iowa.  Her parents were Frederick Glade and Amelia Kalkofen Glade.  Her father was born March21, 1862, in Hessen Darmsted, Germany, coming to America at the age of three years, and settling in Henry county, Illinois, near Kewanee.  In the spring of 1876, they moved to Prussia Township, Adair County.  Fred married Amelia on December 4, 1887, bought a farm in Summerset Township, farmed and built the buildings and raised their family.

Amelia Kalkofen was born July 3, 1868, at North Mendota, Illinois in Lee County.  She came to Iowa at the age of six months, settling in Prussia Township, near Casey.  Her father, Christian, had helped start the Lutheran Church in Prussia Township.  He also owned the first spring wagon in Adair County.  Anna and her family attended Gem Point Country Church.  Anna attended country school No. 3 in Summerset Township.  Her parents retired from grain farming and raised polled shorthorn cattle.  They moved to Greenfield, where she finished her schooling and graduated from high school.  She attended Cedar Falls College, taking twelve weeks of normal training to teach school.  She taught a winter and spring term at the Kading School, Walnut Township No. 4; one year at Richland Township No. 2;  two years at Summerset Township No. 1; and a spring term at Eureka Township No. 6 school in 1921.  Anna is the fifth child, having older brothers and sisters; George died at six months; Bessie (Mrs. Ruben Faber of LaMoilee, Illinois deceased); Elizabeth (Mrs. Glen Piper of Greenfield, deceased); Louis Glade, living in Fontanelle; and a younger brother, William, of Guthrie Center, deceased.  Anna’s parents are buried in the Greenfield Cemetery.  Fred died August 19, 1933, and Amelia died January 7, 1946, about six miles from her birthplace.  On December 19, 1959, James married Hazel King Loy.  He is manager in the Burlington Northern R.R. Office in Lincoln, Nebraska.

James and Anna raised a family of three children, and all are living today.  Elaine (refer to Lincoln Township).  Reese Erman, born June 14, 1924, near Adair, married Elizabeth Harriet Reed February 10, 1946.  They live in Menlo and retired from farming in Jefferson Township.  James Jewell was born June 2, 1930, in Greenfield.  In October, 1951, he was drafted into the Army and served as a paratrooper in the 76th Tank Battalion of the 11th Airborne Division.  He married Donaphe Chase of Guthrie Center, March 1, 1952.  They have a son, Burl Law.  Burl James Law joined the Army and served in Company C, 1st Maintenance Battalion.  He married Aurora Francis Soto Law January 29, 1974; they have a son, Guadalupe James, born May 18, 1975 in Dallas, Texas.

James and Anna farmed and raised purebred Holstein cows and for a while had half interest in the Piper Dairy in Greenfield.  They now reside on their farm four and one-half miles northwest of Casey, and are active members of the Menlo Methodist Church.


In 1873, James Monroe Law came to Eureka Township, with his parents, Mr. and Mrs. J. D. Law, riding a pony in front of the covered wagon.  He attended country school in Eureka Township, Normal School in Dexter, and Highland Park College in Des Moines,  (His father had taught school.)

Monroe, as they called him, would teach the winter terms of school, besides farming, around the 1890’s teaching various places as Eureka Center, Dark Valley, Lone Star (home School), Highland, and others.  His pupils knew him as a wizard in math, as he could carry a mathematical problem of a page length in his head.  James Monroe learned to write in the Spencerian hand method.  He also was an artist with the pen and a bottle of ink. 

Transcribed from Adair County History 1976 by volunteer Mary Cochrane

pages 236-242



Adair County

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