Residents of Jefferson Township Part 2 1976
Daryl Dean Nelson was born March 30, 1953, at Fort Dodge, Iowa. His parents are Wayne and Aneta Nelson of Greenfield. His older brother, Ron, and wife, Judy, also reside in the Greenfield area. His grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Henry Saucke of the Fort Dodge area.
The Nelson family formerly lived on a farm in the Farnhamville area, and moved to the Greenfield area in 1960 when Daryl was seven years old. They later purchased the farm in Section 15, Grove Township.
Daryl graduated from Greenfield High School in 1971 and then attended Southwestern Community College in Creston for two years. While attending college, he met Janna Gay Guthrie, who was enrolled in a secretarial course. She was a graduate of the Menlo Community School in the Class of 1971. Her parents are Everett and Luene Guthrie of Menlo. Her brother, Lee, and wife, Freeda, and their daughters, Robin and Miriam, live on a farm near Casey, are all deceased.
Janna was born June 22, 1953, at the Methodist Hospital in Des Moines. The day she and her mother were to leave for home, lightning struck the chimney of the hospital and caused broken bricks to fly in every direction. There was a lot of excitement and concern, as nurses ran from room to room, to see if anyone had been injured. Luckily, no one was hurt. The same day, a bad storm occurred in the Adair area.
After graduating from college, Janna was employed as a secretary at Wellman Dynamics in Creston for two years. Daryl graduated from Southwestern College and then attended one year of college at Iowa State at Ames. It was at this time Daryl decided to leave school and to begin farming.
Daryl and Janna were married September 22, 1974. They are presently living on a farm in Jefferson Township which is owned by her parents, and was previously owned by her grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Barnhouse. Daryl is presently farming Ed Bohan’s farm land in Grove Township and is active in custom baling work. He, his father, and brother, Ron, have a partnership in selling and servicing Vermeer balers, a job that keeps them busy almost all year long. Janna is active in church work and other organizations. She is secretary for Pastor Duane Manning for both Jefferson Center and Menlo United Methodist Churches. She is organist at the Jefferson Center Church, of which she is a member. She enjoys entertaining with both organ and piano music, where and when needed, especially at the Community Care Center at Stuart, and at weddings, bridal showers and family reunions. This year, 1976, Janna has been employed as secretary by Howe and Olesen Law Office in nearby Greenfield.
Louie and Audrey Nelson moved to their present home in Jefferson Township from Grove Township in the spring of 1964. The farm was purchased from Fred Whittum, who had resided on it for many years. The house was built by Fred in 1925. Louis was born in Spencer, Nebraska, in 1914. His parents were Addie Mae and John A. Nelson. He attended schools in Minnesota and South Dakota. As a young man, he came to Iowa and worked as a farm hand. In 1933, he started an auto repair shop at Howe. Later, he took up farming. His mother, Addie, passed away in 1926 and his father in 1941. They are both buried at Akeley, Minnesota.
Louis and Audrey were married in 1939. Audrey was born at Fairplay, Missouri, in 1920. Her parents were Cora and Obie Fleeter. When Audrey was 4 years of age, her parents moved to Iowa and settled in the Zion area of Adair County. She attended school at Zion, graduating in 1938. Her father, Obie, passed away in 1958 and is buried in the Hill of Zion Cemetery. Her mother resided in Winterset.
The Nelsons have three children: Richard, Donald, and Patty. Richard Eugene was born June 8, 1940. He attended country school at Grove No. 7, graduating from high school at St. Charles. Soon after graduation he enlisted in the Navy and was stationed in California. While in the service, he met Mary Joyce Graves of Hawthorne, California. She was born May 3, 1943. On July 21, 1962, Richard and Joyce were married. They have one child, Mary Margaret, born November 18, 1965. After his Navy discharge, the family moved to Iowa. They reside in Des Moines and Richard has employment with the Navy there.
Donald Eldon, Born September 29, 1943, attended school in Adair County, graduating from Greenfield. He spent 10 years in the Air National Guard unit in Des Moines. He resides in Des Moines and is a fireman at the airport there.
Patty Ann was born June 11, 1953. She attended school at Greenfield and Menlo, graduating in 1971 from Menlo. She was married to Arnold Lewis June 25, 1971. His parents are Merritt and Doris Lewis. They live in the tenant house on her parent’s farm. She is employed by Standard Oil in Des Moines.
The Nelsons like to travel, camp, boat and water ski. Donald Nelson was united in marriage with Roma Cummins, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Howard Cummins of Jefferson Township, January 31, 1976.
Frederick A. Nielsen was born on May 3, 1932 in Audubon County, Iowa, the son of Niels Nielsen and L. Christena (Wedemeyer) Nielsen. L. Nadine (Benton) Nielsen was born in Seeley Township, Guthrie County, Iowa on December 25, 1932. Her parents are Wayne and Blanche (Cowden) Benton. Frederick and Nadine were married on March 6, 1956 in Adair. Fred farms and sells and repairs guns.
Walter H. Petersen was born January 27, 1916 in Summit Township. His parents were Nels Jergen Petersen, born February 11, 1886 in Denmark, who came to the United States when 16 years of age, and died February 25, 1957; and Christena Christensen, born June 24, 1894, at Harlan, Iowa. His grandparents were Hans Petersen, born in 1862 in Bornin County, Denmark and died January 5, 1939 in the United States; Sophia Henningsen, born in Denmark and died in April, 1938, in the United States; and Martin Christensen and Magdalena Jensen, both of whom were born in Denmark and died in the United States.
Geraldine Leota Guthrie Petersen was born November 5, 1918, in Walnut Township. Her parents were Jesse Guthrie, born August 4, 1882 in Walnut Township and died November 14, 1947, and Daisy McNally, born August 20, 1883 in Walnut Township and died July 10, 1964.
Her grandparents were Lewis R. Guthrie, born January 29, 1855 in Ohio and died July 29, 1917; Martha E. Hammer, born May 23, 1857 at Newton, Iowa and died November 28, 1946 (she was a Quaker, then lost her birthright when she turn Methodist); and Felix McNally and Margaret Park, both born in Ireland and died in the United States. The Petersen’s had one child, Carolyn Kay, born October 18, 1947, at Stuart.
Donald Pettit was born February 6, 1949. His wife, Susan Winefeldt, was born May 30, 1952. They were married April 3, 1971. They had two children, Ernest Eugene and William Dean. They have lived on the William McAtee place since March, 1971, and work for Bob Linn. Mr. and Mrs. Earl Pettit live on the Herrick farm in Jefferson Township, Menlo.
Donald G. Roberts and Marilyn Middleton came to Sec. 28 of Jefferson Township March 1, 1963 from the Stuart Stringham farm on South Coon River, five and one-half miles northeast of Stuart to live on the 240 acre farm owned by Dr. T. A. Dermody of Breda, Iowa. The Arnold Odendahl family was living on this farm and moved to Jefferson, Iowa. The Roberts family consists of William Francis (Bill), born April 10, 1954; Shelene Rae December 19, 1955; Ted LeRoy, born December 9, 1956; and Larry Duane, born June 20, 1960. Mr. and Mrs. Roberts were both 31 years of age in 1963. They lived on this farm until March, 1971, when the farm went up for sale and was later sold to Paul D. Shelley, a neighbor living one mile directly east and north of the farm. Dr. Dermody, a veterinarian, died suddenly March 29, 1970 on Easter Sunday.
On February 27, 1971 the Roberts family moved to the 240 acre farm in sec. 11 of Jefferson Township formerly owned by Lyle D. Stoberl of rural Stuart. Mr. and Mrs. Roberts bought this farm from Mr. Stoberl at this time. From the time they started to farm, the Roberts have increased their herd of Holstein milk cows. Other livestock include hogs from farrowing to finish. Mr. Roberts also farms his father’s farm in Sec. 5 of Lincoln Township. His father is V. Garland Roberts, who had come to this area from Afton, Iowa, in 1927, at which time he was married to Georgieanna Chittick of Stuart. Marilyn Roberts’ parents are Shetlz S. Middleton, who lived most of his farming life on farms in Lincoln Township, and Helen Cooley, who lived most of her young life before marriage in south Stuart.
Dick and Shirley Riche’s children are Dianna, Roger, and Kenneth. Kenneth and his wife, Vickie, live in a trailer home on their farm. Their children are Craig Allen and Angela Maire.
Samuel J. Longshore settle here on October 1, 1955, then later sold the farm to John D. Hogan. He died on August 1, 1955.
Ralph H. Olson purchased the farm, which consisted of 160 acres in 1956. Glenn Stevenson became the new owner of the farm in 1957.
In 1972 they bought the house, barn, corn crib and a square section from Mr. Stevenson.
They have completely remodeled the house, adding a bathroom, heat and water.
A new two car garage was built in 1975
My parents, Nicholas and Katie Roche, were married on November 8, 1898. They bought and moved to this farm, 160 acres, section 9, in Jefferson Township, Adair County, two and three-fourths miles south and one-half miles west of Menlo in 1912.
The land was purchased from a Mr. Schmidt. The tenant was Jack McLenen. The house was built by A. Denning in 1885. A family, by the name of Thompson, later moved her and built the present barn. I have had the barn covered in galvanized sheeting.
The Thompson family planted the walnut trees, which are standing in our front yard.
In early years, the house upstairs was used as a public dance hall. People drove horses and buggies to the occasions. The two north rooms were used as cloakrooms and there was no partition in the south of the upstairs. That was the dance hall.
Uncle John Hogan was one of the many people attending dances. There was an outside stairway for people to get to the hall.
My brother, Ambrose, sisters Lillian and Mabel, and myself were born on our farm home south of Stuart. My youngest sister, Wauneta, was born at this home.
My father, mother, brother and sister Mabel, sister Mary Alice, have all passed away.
I do not recall the price of the land at that time, when my parents purchased it. Now the farm is to be divided between my youngest sister, Wauneta, and my brother’s heirs.
Merle A. Shea, Menlo, Iowa, was born at Stuart, February 12, 1911. His wife, Leota Roche Shea, was born at Stuart, November 30, 1910.
Their daughters were Coleen Kay Shea Johnson, born at Menlo August 27, 1940 and Carol Ann Shea Queck, born at Stuart December 27, 1942.
Merle’s parents are John A. Shea and Mary Coffman Shea.
Leota’s parents are Nicholas F. Roche and Katherine Lillie Roche.
Grandparents are Richard and Julie She, and Philip and Magdeline Lillie.
My husband, Merle She, and I have farmed the place for 42 years, the first three years as a hired man when the wages were $18 per month. We have rented the farm for 39 years. We are the parents of two daughters, Coleen and Carol, and are grandparents.
My mother lived with us for many years, until her death. Sister Wauneta is presently living at our home.
Paul Dwight Shelley, born March 3, 1931, at Menlo, Guthrie County, married Dorothea Elaine Wulff, born December 8, 1933, in Madison County on December 24, 1951.
Their children are Donald Paul Shelly, born March 5, 1953, in Winterset, Madison County; Delbert Earl Shelly, born February 27, 1954, in Greenfield, married Cynthia Sue Beavers, born September 17, 1955, in Des Moines, September 22, 1973. (They have a son Richard Ear, born September 13, 1974, in Guthrie Center. Cynthia’s parents are Mr. and Mrs. Rex D. Beavers, Sr., of Des Moines, and Mrs. Darlene Beavers of Des Moines); and Brien Allison Shelly, born in Greenfield, November 2, 1957.
Paul’s parents were Allison Glenwood Shelly, born May 17, 1875 at Grey, Iowa and married February 2, 1916 to Mable Hadley, born July 15, 1895, in Guthrie County. The grandparents were Horace and Martha Edna Sweezy Shelley and Alistus and Alice McNickols Hadley.
Elaine’s parents are Paul Max Wulff, born September 28, 1905, in Berlin, Germany, and married March 15, 1927 to Hanna Lilly, born November 24, 1904, in Adair County. The grandparents were Otto and Eliza Bilgow Wulff and Walter and Elsa Muller (Miller) Lilly.
Robert Oren Skellenger was born February 18, 1866. His wife, Kate McCaulley, was born April 7, 1871. They were married February 18, 1890, and were the parents of seven children.
Mr. Skellenger came from New York State in a covered wagon. He and his wife lived in Grove and Jefferson Townships, around Casey and Stuart. They moved to the Russ Peters farm in Jefferson Township in 1933. In the forties they moved to the farm where the Carl Smith now reside. Mrs. Skellenger passed away August 16, 1946, while they still lived there. Oren moved to a small house and lived in it while Margaret, a daughter, and husband Carl, lived in the present house.
Oren moved the little house to Greenfield in the late fifties and converted it into a garage. His daughter, Laura Garnett, lived with him and kept house for her father a number of years. He passed away January 2, 1960.
Clarence, the son of the Oren Skellengers, was born in Grove Township October 3, 1897. His wife, Victoria Prokop, was born December 17, 1917 at Mercer, North Dakota. They are the parents of three sons.
They were married at the home of Oren Skellenger by Rev. Louis Joslin of Jefferson Center Methodist Church, on March 17, 1940.
They moved in March, 1942, to the Frank Parkis farm, which Oren purchased from Herb Stowell. It was known as the old Flynn farm.
Sons include: Clarence Eugene, born May 20, 1943; Ronald James, born July 17, 1949; and Steven Frank, born December 12, 1952. The two older sons are married and live in Stuart. Steven also resides in the same town.
Victoria’s parents came from Austria and homesteaded in North Dakota. I, Victoria, was born in a sod house and came to Iowa in 1940.
Since living on the present farm, storms have occurred, hailing us out July 2, 1942. The storm occurred at 11:30 p.m. Another storm occurred in the early morning of August 6, 1956. On April 4, 1973, a spring snow storm struck, killing many cattle and other animals in the fields. The snow drifts blocked the doors of our house on the outside and we had to crawl out a window.
We enjoy meeting people and participating in the Farm Bureau of Adair County.
--written by Mrs. Victoria Skellenger, Menlo, Iowa
My name is Montgomery L. Smith, son of Clarence Emery (Kay) Smith and Lou Etta M. Craven Smith, and I was born May 17, 1950, in Adair County, Jefferson Township, Section 15, or that was my address at the time of my birth in Stuart. I lived all my life in this same location, went to school in Menlo until I graduated in 1969. During the time I served in the Army during the Vietnam conflict, the old farmstead called ”HOME” became more important to me, and after trying the city for a few years, I determined to return to the farm and try my hand at that occupation. I am now doing that in partnership with my Dad, who purchased the farm in Section 30, known as Fairview Farm or Ranch, where I moved in February of 1975, from Walter and Geraldine Peterson.
On November 22, 1975, I married Cynthia Louise Scar, daughter of Leonard C. and Dorothy Scar of Earlham, and we are making out home here just west of Highway 25 between Menlo and Greenfield.
The farm where Clarence (Kay) Emery Smith and his wife, Lou Etta, reside in Adair County (Jefferson Township, Section 15) was purchased in the fall of 1874 by Clarence’s grandfather, Conrad Emery Russell, who was here from Princeville, Illinois, visiting his sister, Mrs. James Peters, who lived just across the road. This farm has been in the family since that time. Kay’s mother, Mary Edna Russell Smith, was born there in 1890, and Kay was born there in 1927; his son, Monty, was born there in 1950. The Russell grandparents moved to Stuart in 1908, and their son, Frank A. Russell, and his family moved into the family homestead until 1924, at which time Kay’s parents and brothers, Mr. and Mrs. Leonard S. Smith, Carl D. and Howard R. moved there. When Kay came along later, he was named “Clarence”, but as a smiling, blue-eyed toddler he would attempt to introduce himself to everyone as “Cayance,” and it was later shortened to “Kay,” as he is known in the community today.
The Russell family history tells of the original small home becoming too crowded, and the present house being built in 1900, at about the same time as a nice, big barn was built. There was a half-acre on the far southwest corner donated for the Jefferson Center schoolhouse, which was both school and church building at times, until the Jefferson Center Methodist Church was built one mile east of that corner in 1882. The original schoolhouse was moved east to a second half acre of the farm and the present building of much larger, more modern structure (because of the full basement) was built. The old building was then used as a voting site and community center or social facility. The present day schoolhouse stands visible for miles yet today, though it hasn’t been used as a schoolhouse since 1950 when the country schoolhouses were closed and the children bused to the town schools. Very few of these buildings, once located approximately every two miles apart, are still standing.
The Russell children attended school and church here during their youth, as did the Smith boys. Kay and his brothers tell not only of attending school, but also boarding the teacher many times. Lou Etta remembers moving from Kansas to the farm across the road, west of the schoolhouse in 1927, and boarding the teacher, who was Irene Linn at the time, getting to visit school occasionally, and being allowed to be in a school “program” at 2. She also remembers the teacher putting her shoes in their cook stove oven one cold winter morning, and the stove got hotter than expected and burned the teacher’s shoes. In those days you were fortunate if you owned more than one pair. Lou Etta’s family left the farm in 1929, but Kay recalls the snow storm of Election Day, 1932, when 4 or 5 trucks loaded with cattle were stranded on old Highway 25, and the cattle were moved into local barns. The truckers were bedded down in the old community building with whatever bedding could be spared from the nearby homes, and meals were furnished to them by these same families until about everyone was out of food when the roads were opened. The drifts were so deep and firm that his dad could drive his horses over the fences. The depression and drought years of the 30’s are too well remembered by those who went through them. Since most farms had their own chickens in those days, Kay remembers one summer when chicken was the daily faire at mealtime. He remembers his dad loading some corn to take to sell for the purchase of coal for the stoves and a sack of flour, but the coal was loaded into the wagon first, and when weighed, amounted to most of the money the corn had brought. Pride kept his dad from scooping some of it off, so when he got home he explained the situation to Kay’s mother, who went to the corn crib and ground corn for corn bread until something could be sold for a bag of wheat flour. To this day, Kay cares very little for chicken OR corn bread! He remembers wanting a bicycle so badly and nagging at his parents for one until one day he was certain his pleas were going to be answered. That particular afternoon when school was dismissed, he purposely left his lunch pail, hoping he could ride his “new bike” after it. But when he got home, there was no bicycle, and he was promptly sent back on his old pony to fetch his lunch bucket. He was a bit perturbed, so he rode the pony back on a dead run-this made the thermos in his lunch pail rattle, frightening the horse, who ran by the driveway, then suddenly realized what he had done, and came to a screeching halt, throwing Kay onto the road and breaking his arm—total cost of this disaster came to much more than a new bike, but he never has owned one to this day.
A big event of the mid-thirties was the replacement of the old kerosene lamps with a light bulb in the center of each room that one particular day was electrified by simply pulling the long string that hung from the bulb. Eventually there was a refrigerator brought from Garnett’s Implement store in Menlo—“on trial”, mind you. After a week it was loaded into a truck and sent back to the store, but in 1951, and moved from Avoca onto the farm in just a day or two Leonard went back after it as Kay says they all loved the cold milk it provided for their meals.
There were days and days of threshing each summer, because dad owned a threshing machine, and Kay carried water jugs on his old pony for the hot and thirsty crew. His brothers were big enough to help with the actual harvest, but Kay was younger and had to address the men by “Mr.”, even though he heard them called by their first names. In those days the children were taught to respect their elders.
Kay tells of years and years when his mother played the piano for church and many times walked up the road to the schoolhouse to play the piano if teacher didn’t play. She also played for the male quartet that sang for church, funerals, and programs—the men in the quartet being his dad, Uncle Bert Russell, and cousins, Beryl Russell and Clyde Lawson. His wife, Lou Etta, played the piano and organ for church in the ‘50’s, but the quartet was never re-organized after Kay’s mother became ill and died in 1943. By that time his brother, Howard had been drafted into the Army and Kay and his dad were left alone until his father remarried and Kay was drafted into the Navy in 1945. After he came home, he spent a year in Menlo, until his dad left the farm, and then he brought his wife and small daughter to live on the home place. Several times they have had the Russell Reunion, the last time being in 1974, when more than 100 Russell descendants came for their 50th Anniversary of the Reunion. The original one was held in the same home in 1924.
There have been good years and bad years. On June 26, 1953, in the late hot Saturday afternoon, a tornado struck southwest of them, near Canby. Kay was coming home from town and drove into the yard, honking the car horn and call to Lou Etta to get the two napping children to the basement. The storm struck immediately, though not in the form of a tornado, but with such force in the wind and hail that the crops were completely destroyed. A similar storm hit on August 7, 1956, taking several of the barns with the crops this time. Sometimes Middle River has been very low during the dry spells, but other times it has flooded over the low lands, roads and bridges.
Daughter, Cindra Kay, went to country school until it closed in 1955, when she went to Menlo and Monty started to kindergarten. There were years of 4-H, and County Fair was a big event with not only the girls’ exhibits to be ready, but also calves to train and sometimes a lamb to show; besides this, the maternal grandparents, Harold and Inez Craven, were always there with their ponies. That was before the days of automatic washers and dryers or wash-and-wear clothing, and Mother many times came home from a long Fair day and evening to wash out everyone’s jeans to hang on the line in the yard till dawn, and then probably have to be iron dried, for if it rained at all summer, it rained during the Adair County Fair. In those days, Lou Etta was working in the Commodity Loan Department of the ASCS office, too, so those were busy but happy days to recall.
Neighbors remembered from earlier days to the present are: Ern Morrisons, Russ Peters, Oren Skellengers, George Wilkies, Clarence Leff, Basil Clines, Charles Graves, Waldo Herkelmans, Al Bells, Harry Kalbachs, Harvey Paytons, Wayne Taylors, Clara Whittum, Will Beans, Royal McNelleys, Reese Laws, Everett Varleys, Boyd Welch, Art Betts, Leo Chances, Charles Varleys, Lyle Beans, and George Skellengers, to mention as many as can be quickly recalled.
John V. and Mary J. Starr and family moved from northwest of Fontanelle, Eureka Township, in 1911 to the farm in Jefferson Township, Section 33, known as the Bruce farm, consisting of 424 acres with one of the largest orchards in Adair County. Later they purchased 70 acres across the road north, making a total of 494 acres.
The family includes seven children: Margaret M. LaRue, Greenfield; George W. (deceased), Rosa E. Culver, Greenfield; John F., Panora; Anne S. Williams, Omaha, Nebraska; Valley R., Menlo; and Lee L., deceased.
Mrs. And Mrs. John V. Starr, Sr. owned the same farm for 46 years. On September 10, 1930, Mr. and Mrs. John Starr, Sr., retired from the farm and moved to Greenfield. The farms were then operated by Valley R. Starr and John F. Starr, Jr., of Menlo. John V. Starr, Sr., passed away March 13, 1946, at the age of 81. After the death of Mary J. Starr, July 24, 1957, farm No. 1 was sold at auction to Jay Howe, Sr., of Greenfield, farm No. 2 to John F. Starr, Jr., then of Menlo. The family enjoyed many of nature’s beauties, a natural spring and pond and beautiful timberland on their farms. By Mrs. Valley R. Starr
John F. Starr married Thelma E. Haynes on February 6, 1929. To this union 3 children were born: Patricia A., Robert F., and Phyllis J. Patricia wed Richard Colbert and they have two children, Janelle and David. Robert wed Jane James and they have two boys, Randy and Danny. Phyllis has three children, Edwin, Luann and Phillip.
The Starrs lived on the same farm for 45 years, 70 acres in Jefferson Township, which they rented from the Starr Estate until 1957, when they purchased the farm. They sold the farm in 1974 and are now living in Panora, Iowa.
Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence McEvoy were the parents of: Dennis McEvoy, Sr., Stuart; Leo J. McEvoy, Stuart; Kathryn McEvoy Mulldoon, Stuart; Cecilia McEvoy Murphy, Walnut; Elizabeth McEvoy Wolfe, Bancroft; William Conroy, Stuart; Mary Conroy Hamilton, Twin Falls, Idaho; and Lawrence McEvoy, Jr., Stuart (deceased). Dennis’ father helped lay the Rock Island Railroad ties from New York City to Walnut, Iowa. He quit working with the railroad at Walnut and bought 160 acres of farm ground. In 1906, the family purchased the Sever farm, two and one-half miles east of Stuart, and moved there.
In 1913 Dennis married Mildred Hammond, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Hammond, Dexter, Iowa. Mildred had two brothers, Roy and Jay, and one sister Lela Hammond.
In 1938 Dennis bought the home place. The McEvoy have two sons, Dennis, of Stevenson, Washington, and James of Grand Junction, Colorado, and one daughter, Mary (Mrs. Lyle) Stoberl.
Mr. and Mrs. Lyle Stoberl have three children, Denise, Patrick, and Lisa. In 1974, the Stoberls purchased the home place east of Stuart. The place has been in the family for seventy years.
Lyle Joseph Stoberl was born April 19, 1930 at manning, Iowa. He married Mary Marjorie McEvoy January 6, 1956. Mary was born March 8, 1934, at Stuart. Their children are: Denise Marie, born April 5, 1958; Patrick Timothy, born March 13, 1960; and Lisa Marie, born September 22, 1962.
Edgar Stinman was born at Fontanelle, Iowa, October 12, 1909. His wife, Leila Spaulding Stinman, was born at Fontanelle, January 16, 1913. They are the parents of one son, Darold Eugene Stinman. He was born October 19, 1931, at Fontanelle. He is employed by the Iowa Highway Patrol.
Edgar’s parents were Blaine Stinman, born May 31, 1884, and Goldie Rice Stinman, born April 9, 1890.
Leila’s parents were Sherman Spaulding, born May 29, 1886, and Gertie Bolger Spaulding, born February 10, 1888. The Stinmans purchased their present farm from the Aetna Life Insurance Company and moved there in 1937. It is known as the Boyer farm in section 28, Jefferson Township.
The old Holiday post office was located in the old house and the Stage Coach stopped here. The house was torn down and the pigeon holes and shelves, which held the mail for early pioneers, were destroyed. A few years ago a new house was built. They enjoyed activities in the community, their farm, and family, and as a sideline, fine horses. Edgar rides in many parades at various celebrations.
Otho J. Trobaugh was born May 5, 1900, at Leavenworth, Indiana. He died in 1954. His parents, Ira Trobaugh and Neicie Baxter, were both born in Corydon, Indiana, as were his grandparents, Harvey Trobaugh and Sarie Curits. Ethel Neola (Hancock) Trobaugh was born March 30, 1897, at Atlantic, Iowa. Her parents are John W. Hancock, born July 24, 1870, in Colchester, Illinois, and Effie Sadie Reed, born August 14, 1864, in Richmond, Ohio. Her grandparents are William and Martha (Storer) Hancock, and Anthony and Sarah (Hickman) Reed of Richmond, Ohio.
Mr. and Mrs. Trobaugh bought this farm in section 6 from Mrs. Ameila Pedersen of Walnut, 1952. The land has been rented out. The place has been sold a number of times. It is known as the Grandfather Charley Van Duzer farm, which he bought in 1879.
The Andrew Varley family live on a Century farm settled by Andrew’s great-grandfather, Charles Varley, Senior. Prior to coming to Jefferson Township, Adair County, Charles Varley sailed around Cape Horn to participate in the California gold rush and later worked as a lumberjack in Vancouver, British Columbia. He brought his wife, Annie Thorpe Varley, and 9 month old son, Charles, from England in August, 1869. They stayed in Des Moines while Mr. Varley began the house that is now part of the present residence. Six children were born to them-Charles (Andrew’s grandfather), Emily, Louis, Sarah, Mary, and Thomas. Charles is the only one having descendants.
The farm Charles Varley settled was operated by his unmarried children, Tom and Mary Varley. As a child Tom was crippled by a fall in the barn, but this did not limit his agricultural pursuits. He was well known for his purebred Poland China hogs, Angus cattle, and horses. He even had a pigeon house and peacocks. His horticultural interests can still be seen in the variety of trees and plantings on the farm. Mary was a beloved school teacher for many years, and served as Republican precinct chairman.
After Tom’s death in 1944, the farm was operated by Charles Varley’s grandson, Preston Varley. In August, 1959, it was purchased by Mrs. Preston Varley and her son, Andrew, and wife Marilyn, who now live on the farm with their four sons, who are the Great-great-grandsons of the original settlers.
Andrew and Marilyn Saucke Varley were married August 23, 1959. Both graduated from Iowa State University. Andrew earned a Master’s degree in Agricultural Economics at North Carolina State (1961). He belongs to Phi Kappa Phi. He worked on the staff at N. c. State in 1960 and 1961 in full-time research. Marilyn taught at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore Maryland, and the University of Georgia. They have four sons: Warren Andrew, born 1961; Thomas James, 1962; John David, 1968; and Curtis Preston, 1974. The family are members of Zion Lutheran Church, Dexter.
Andrew has served on the Farm Bureau, Iowa National Guard and Air Force Reserve, and is a past chairman of the State Extension Advisory Committee, and a trustee of Iowa State University Foundation Farms. He was Adair County Outstanding Young Farmer in 1965, and received Outstanding Young Alumnus Recognition from Iowa State University in 1970.
Andrew was elected state representative from Adair County in 1966 served in the Legislative 62nd General Assembly. In the 63rd G. A. he served as assistant majority leader, as majority leader in the 64th G. A., and as Speaker of the House in the 65 Generally Assembly (1973-1974). He is a member of the minority in the 66th G. A.
The family has recently completed an addition to the house. This is the fourth extensive addition to the home originally built by Charles Varley upon his arrival from England.
Charles Everett Varley was born July 28, 1898 in Adair County, son of Charles Varley, Jr., and Anna Belle Peters. He was married Jun 1, 1921 to Esther May Fritz, born March 26, 1903, in Madison County, to Clarence Richard Fritz and Edith Clara Henkle.
Everett and Esther have lived all their married life in Adair County, across the road from the Jefferson Center United Methodist Church, which they attend.
Everett farmed and raised cattle. He and his son, Charles, worked together until he retired.
They have 4 children, 17 grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren, which they enjoy so much.
Their children are: Beulah Emily Varley, born August 5, 1922; married February 14, 1942 at Jefferson Center Methodist Church near Stuart to Jay Dean Nevitt, born August 6, 1921. They have eight children: Emily Ann Nevitt, born March 18, 1943, who married Gordon Binning; Mary Lou Nevitt, born January 21, 1945, who married Bruce Kobolt-children: Susan Lynn, James Jay, and Jody Ann; Betty Jane Nevitt, born December 10, 1946, who married Lewis Keele; Thomas Jay Nevitt, born March 6, 1948, is married and has two children, Thad Allen and Thomas Scott; Robert Dean Nevitt, born January 18, 1950 who married Barbara Apple, and have two children, Robert Welby and Heather Jean; Patricia Kay Nevitt, born June 13, 1952, who married Richard Reynolds; Carol Lee Nevitt, born March 15, 1956, who married Dan DePue.
Glenna May Varley, born January 30, 1924; married September 12, 1944 at Jefferson Center Methodist Church near Stuart to John Beaty McDonald, born July 13, 1924. He died August 8, 1974. They have three children: Larry John McDonald, born February 19, 1948; Marsha Kay McDonald, born October 28, 1949, who married David Wikenheiser-children: JoAnn Marie, Angela Renae, and Christina Dawn; Gloria Marie McDonald, born February 13, 1951, who married Bill Reha and had one child, Sarah Marie.
Betty Jane Varley, born December 23, 1925; married December 25, 1945 at Jefferson Center Methodist Church to George Wayne Shepherd, born December 11, 1925. They have three children: Nancy Lee Shepherd, born January 23, 1948, who married Arthur Allen; Everett Odell Shepherd, born August 8, 1950, who married Claudia Paulson; and Judy Kay Shepherd, born February 19, 1953, who married Richard Rogers.
Charles Everett Varley , Jr., was born March 18, 1929; married August 15, 1948 at the Methodist Church in Casey to Dorothy L. Powell, born August 13, 1930. Charles had three children: Connie Ann Varley, born May 29, 1949, who married Larry Earhart; Susan Marie Varley, born November 13, 1952, who married Jack Kading and had one child, Tara Lee; and Charles Evan Varley, born June 29, 1955, who married Gwen Kading.
James Preston Varley was born September 5, 1906 and died April 15, 1955. He was the son of Charles and Anna Belle Peters Varley. He was married to Esther Ellen Schutz Varley, born January 24, 1908, on June 21, 1931. Their children are:
Marjorie Ellen Varley, born August 21, 1932 and married Richard Lucero, born November 3, 1926, on January 1, 1959. Their children are Kent Preston, born September 13, 1959. Their children are Kent Preston, born September 13, 1959; Kyle Lynn, born January 5, 1961; Keri May, born August 26, 1962; and Kristy Ellen Lucero, born January 21, 1968.
Andrew Preston Varley, born December 2, 1934, and married to Marilyn Ann Saucke Varley, born April 5, 1935, on August 23, 1958. Their children are: Warren Andrew, born November 8, 1960; Thomas James, born October 9, 1962; John David, born June 11, 1968; and Curtis Preston, born October 7, 1974.
Mary Esther Varley Madrid, born December 15, 1936, and married to Joe A. Madrid, born January 25, 1935. Their sons are: Bill, born October 14, 1956. Dick, born November 8, 1956.
Bertha Belle Varley McPhee, born December 8, 1942 and married to Neil McPhee, born October 11, 1940, on February 26. 1966. They have two children: Gregory Patrick, born November 3, 1966, and Teresa Renee, born October 25, 1972.
Carl James Varley, born October 12, 1944, and married to Evelyn Roberts Varley, born July 31, 1943, on October 20, 1962. Their children are: Stephen James, born October 28, 1963; Julie Lynn, born January 20, 1965; Cathy Ellen, born November 1, 1966,
Victor O. Vedane was born March 28, 1910, at Maple Hill, Iowa. His parents are Charles A. Vedane, born September 21, 1861 in Wemmerby, Sweden and Nancy (McCormick) Vedane, born October 28, 1874 in Massena, Iowa. His maternal grandparents were John and Cornelia McCormick.
Della (Hancock) Vedane was born June 16, 1911 in Lewis, Iowa. Her parents were John W. Hancock, born July 24, 1870 at Colchester, Illinois, and Effie Sadie Reed, born August 14, 1864 at Richmond, Ohio. Her grandparents were William and Martha (Storer) Hancock, and Anthony and Sarah (Hickman) Reed. Their children are: Charles R., born December 6, 1934; Malcom L., born June 9, 1936; and Clyde J., born January 19, 1940.
The farm was bought by Harry and Alvin Croisant in 1916. Former owners were the Abe B. Longs, and before that it was owned by Lee Stookey.
Bernard Volz was born in Jefferson Township in 1932, the son of Merle and Ruth Pote Volz. He graduated from Menlo High School; served in the U.S. Army; and has had a farming career in Jefferson Township, in 1952 he married Betty Lou Taylor, who was born in 1932 in Jefferson Township, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ray E. Taylor, who came from Cass County to Jefferson Township in 1927. She was a graduate of Menlo High School; attended Iowa State Teachers College; was a teacher in elementary schools. They are the parents of two sons, Brian Lee, born in 1960, and Lauren Ray, born in 1963,
Merle J. Volz was born February 4, 1903 in Casey, Iowa. His parents were William Edward Volz, born July 22, 1876, in Benton County, Iowa, and Charlotte (Hess) Volz, born in Guthrie County October 22, 1878. They moved to Adair County in 1899.
He married Ruth Pote, born July 4, 1906, born in Stuart. They are the parents of Bernard Leroy Volz, born in Jefferson, January 9, 1932.
Ruth’s parents were Daniel Clinton Pote, born in Cedar County, Iowa May 8, 1873, the only child of Adam Pote who moved to Adair County in 1875, and Alice Harlan, born January 25, 1874 in Wahoo, Nebraska. Merle and Ruth lived in Jefferson Township, Section 25, from 1930 to 1873, then retired in Stuart. Their son, Bernard, farms in Jefferson Township.
Mark Welker, born June 24, 1896, married Esther Grace Soderberg on February 25, 1928. She was born February 17, 1900. Of this union four children were born: Louisa Winona, born August 21, 1931, who married William Gordon on May 23, 1958. They had four children, which are: William Mark, born November 3, 1959; Mary Louise, born December 18, 1961; Harold David, born August 15, 1965; and Linda Diane, born September 19, 1967.
Mary Ida Welker, born March 2, 1933, married Donald Mauderer on June 26, 1960. Their three children are: Nancy Jo, born July 18, 1961; Kevin Henry, born March 9, 1963; and David Lee, born May 27, 1968.
Cheryl Welker, born September 16, 1933, married Donald Rojas on March 7, 1961. Their four children are Darren Raymond, born December 11, 1968; Darlene Marie, born July 19, 1963; Allen Thomas, born October 30, 1964; and Katherine Ann, born January 18, 1966.
Clifford Welker, born April 21, 1937, married Julis Sheldahl on August 6, 1961. Their four children are: Samuel Jerad, born March 11, 1962; Vernon Jones, born May 25, 1963; Michael Joseph, born August 31, 1964; and Jonathan Allen, born July 4, 1969.
On December 1, 1931, I, Edmund Danniel Boyd Welsh, became the owner of my present home, moving here on February 28, 1932. We all saw some very hard times until the year 1940, when things began to look better.
I purchased this place, which was 120 acres at that time, from Frank and Cora Starr, who had lived here since 1925. Many different ones had owned the place before then.
John Easton was the first owner, getting it from the Government in 1848.
On November 27, 1941, I married Lillian E. Linberg, of Flanagan, Illinois. Through the years we have had a very happy life, raising our little family. We both took an active part in social and civic work.
At this time I think we are the oldest owner and operator in Jefferson Township and cannot say how much longer we will stay.
Clifford W. Williams was born November 5, 1909 at Casey, Iowa. His parents were John Williams, born in Iowa City, and Ida (Whetstone) Williams, born in Casey. His grandparents were Nathaniel and Mary Williams, born in Wales, and Samuel and Mary Whetstone, born in England.
He married Esther Daniels. Their children are: Betty Jean, born July 27, 1931; Norma Carol, born May 22, 1936; Carl Kenneth, born September 17, 1937; Rosemary Louise, born October 1939; and Paul Leroy, born August 20, 1942.
Elbert Dean Williams was born January 26, 1933 in Harrison Township, Adair County, the son of Sherman D. and Edith Denning Williams.
Shirley Arlene Williams was born November 11, 1934 in Summerset Township, Adair County, the daughter of Clyde D. and Ellen Brooks Westphal.
They were married June 11, 1952 in Harrison Township. They have one daughter, Marcella Francene, born July 26, 1959 at Greenfield.
Elbert served two years in the United States Army and spent 1 ½ years in Germany while in service, accompanied by his wife.
Dwayne G. Wright was born at Menlo in Guthrie County on June 30, 1931.
His wife, Marcia Thompson Wright, was born in Des Moines, Polk County, on December 3, 1934.
They were united in marriage January 8, 1953 at Menlo. They are the parents of one daughter, Michele Diane, born January 9, 1950 at Moses Lake, Washington.
The Wrights presently reside on the U. L. Wright family farm, having moved there in 1962.
Dwayne’s parents are U. L. Wright, born May 29, 1886 (died March 15, 1966), and Eva Goochey Wright, born November 26, 1887 (died August 16, 1969). They were married April 24, 1907.
Marcia Thompson Wright’s parents are William B. Thompson and Vera Young.
Clarence H. Chase grew up on a Kansas farm where he was born September 3, 1891 in Esborn, Jewel County, Kansas. His parents were Leslie E. Chase, born June 17, 1866 in New York State and Mary Ellen (Watson) Chase, born March 15, 1866 in Missouri. He married Josephine I. Flood from Lebanon, Kansas. January 15, 1916. Her mother was Cora Agnes (Wallace) Hayward Flood, born January 7th, 1864 in a small town of Webster, Iowa. She moved to Kansas in 1894.
Mr. Chase and wife, Josephine, farmed for some time in Kansas, but after having seven straight years of drought, moved to Iowa in the fall of 1939. They rented farms until they bought the Wm. Bateham farm in Section 32, Jefferson Township, in 1951. They lived there 18 years. During that time the new Highway 25 was put through from Highway 6 to 92, taking out so many of the beautiful evergreens Mr. and Mrs. Bateham had worked so hard to grow. The state took off about sixty-five of them. Mr. Bateham passed away in 1945.
In 1944 Mrs. Chase’s mother came back from Kansas to live with them. She passed away in a nursing home in Greenfield, January 21, 1961. Her burial was in the Anita cemetery near where she lived as a girl and near where the James boys held up the train and robbed it. One of them hid in the cane patch of Josephine’s grandfather for a while.
In 1969 we sold our farm to Francis and Mary Dickey and bought property in southwest Greenfield, where we are now living. In January, 1966, we celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary at Grove Chapel Church.
Frank Colwell was born in Ireland November 12, 1835, and came to America at age 14. He went to Wisconsin where he worked at the logging trade. He then moved to Des Moines.
Catherine Hughes was born in County Mayo, Ireland and came to America at age 15. She was on the boat which came to America 6 weeks. She settled in Des Moines, where her brothers and sisters resided.
Frank Colwell and Catherine Hughes were married in Des Moines, April 19, 1879. That same year they came to Stuart, and bought 160 acres of land six miles southwest of Stuart in Jefferson Township, where they lived for forty years. They sold the farm in 1910 and moved to Division Street in South Stuart, where they resided until their deaths. They are buried in Calvary Cemetery at Stuart. They had a family of eight children: Mary, John, Margaret, Frank, Katherine, James, Anna and Marcus. Anna says her father went about with team and wagon on the dirt roads selling subscriptions to build the Catholic Church in Stuart.
The Samuel Pote family moved to Adair in 1875. Samuel Pote (1820-1884) and Anna Good (1825-1899) moved from Henry County, Indiana to Cedar County, Iowa, in 1854. The family came to Adair County in 1875, locating along the county line in Jefferson Township. Mr. and Mrs. Pote are buried in Menlo Cemetery.
They had thirteen children—six dying when small, including twins. Seven children, namely: Adam (1845-1931), Mary Jane Dohrman (1847-1932), Jacob (1849-1941), Samuel (1850-1919), Theirman (1859-1945). All resided in this county at one time. A great grandson, Jake Pote of Washington Township (Jacob), and two great great grandchildren, Mrs. George Luckinbill (Phyllis Wildman), and Bernard Volz (Adam), own farms in Jefferson Township at this time.
Transcribed from Adair County History 1976 by volunteer Mary Cochrane