IAGenWeb Project

Audubon County
IAGenWeb

Home

1889 Bios Index

1889 BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY OF
SHELBY AND AUDUBON COUNTIES, IOWA

W. S. DUNBAR & CO., PUBLISHERS
113 ADAMS STREET, CHICAGO


S


CYRUS H. SAMPSON, a thorough-going agriculturist of Viola Township, Audubon County, was born in Iowa County, Wisconsin, near Mineral Point, May 1, 1850. He is next to the oldest of four children of Henry and Elizabeth (Baker) Sampson, who are natives of England. They married and settled in Iowa County, Wisconsin, in which place the mother died in 1864.The father, who survives her, is still living on the old homestead. Cyrus H. passed his youth in his native county, receiving in addition to a commonschool education a course in a business college. In 1873 he came to Audubon County, Iowa, and purchased eighty acres of prairie land and rented land for two years. In 1875 he settled on the farm he now owns and went to work in good earnest.He has been prosperous, and has added to the small beginning until he has a farm covering 390 acres, all well fenced and stocked with cattle, hogs, and a few horses. He has erected a large, substantial residence, which is surrounded by a beautiful grove and lawn. Mr. Sampson devotes special attention to feeding cattle, shipping from one to two carloads of cattle annually, besides large numbers of hogs.In 1877 Mr. Sampson was united in marriage to Miss Martha Ellis, of Audubon County, Iowa.She was born in the State of New York, and removed with her parents to Grinnell, Iowa, when a child. Three children have been born of this marriage Henry E., Cyrus F. and Cora May. Mr. Sampson has served as supervisor of roads several terms.In politics he is conservative. He takes an active part in endeavors to elevate the morals of the community; is a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal church, using his money and influence in the support of the same.By his honorable and upright living he has won the confidence and respect of all who know him, and is considered one of the reliable farmers of Viola Township.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 742.



JUDGE ARTHUR L. SANBORN is a native of the State of New Hampshire, born in the town of New Hampton, November 7, 1842. His father, Caleb M. Sanborn, was of the thirteenth generation of an English family who were among the first English settlers of New Hampshire.The mother of Arthur L. was a Miss Nancy Quinly, daughter of James Quinly, who was a soldier in the Revolutionary war, and held a Captain's commission. Arthur L. Sanborn is the youngest of sixteen children, ten of whom lived to maturity. He remained in his native county until he was fifteen years old, when he went to Massachusetts, and went to work in a sash, door and blind factory, in which employment he continued until the breaking out of the Rebellion, when he enlisted, August 14, 1861, in the First New Hampshire Cavalry; he served his country faithfully until July 19, 1865, when he was mustered out of the service as QuartermasterSergeant. He returned to New Hampshire, and soon after went to Chicago, and worked there one year with J. H. Reed &. Co., wholesale druggists.He then went to Carroll County, Illinois, and in 1868 he came to Audubon County, stopping in Viola Township and opening up a new farm; he remained there eight years, and his daughter Viola was the first child born in the township.He left the farm and spent six months in Exira, and then went to Washington County, Iowa, returning to Audubon County in 1878.Be was appointed postmaster of Audubon, receiving a commission from 1879 to 1883; at the expiration of his commission he was succeeded by E. H. Kimball.On retiring from the postoffice he went to Manning, Iowa, and there engaged in the drug trade with Cloughly Brothers. In 1888 he returned to Audubon, still in the employ of the Cloughly Brothers, as clerk, a position he now holds. Mr. Sanborn was united in marriage December 24, 1867, to Mary Cameron, a daughter of Allen and Catherine Cameron, and a sister of John Cameron.Seven children have been born to this union Arthur C., Donald O., Herbert, Viola E., the wife of E. R. Dutt, and Mabel; two died in infancy. Mr. Sanborn is a member of Veritas Lodge, No. 392. A. F. & A. M., being first junior warden of the same. He is a member of Allison Post, No. 134, G. A. R. Politically he is a staunch Republican.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 735.



WILLIAM H. SCOTT is a member of the firmof Scott Brothers, undertakers, and dealers in furniture, Audubon, Iowa. This business was established by Horace Prentice, W. H. Scott becoming his agent for the first year. At the end of that time Mr. Scott bought a halfinterest in the business, and the firm continued for several years. In 1884 Walter R. Scott, brother to WilliamH. Scott, purchased the halfinterest of Mr. Prentice, arid the firm changed to Scott Brothers. The business was continued at the old stand, Scott Brothers owning the building. They purchase their supplies directly from eastern factories, and are well known and established in the business. William H. Scott was born in Warren County, New York, May 11, 1847. He is the oldest son of Robert and Eliza (Hodgin) Scott. The father was a Highland Scotchman, and the mother was a native of Saint Lawrence County, New York, both her father and mother being of Scotch descent. They were the parents of six children, three of whom survive.The father died in 1874, in his fiftyeighth year; the mother is still living, and is a resident of Audubon, Iowa.The boyhood of William H. Scott was passed in his native State, where he grew to manhood. He began to learn the cabinetmaker's trade at the age of eighteen, and served an apprenticeship of two years, when the firm with which he was employed failed. He then went to Greenwich, Washington County, New York, where he worked at his trade, and afterward worked in Troy, New York. In May, 1876, he Came to Mechanicsville, Cedar County, Iowa, where he remained for two years.In the fall of 1878 he came to Audubon as agent for Mr. Prentice, as before stated.In October, 1868, Mr. Scott was married to Miss Miriam W. Tefft, of Saratoga County, New York, a daughter of John H. and Mary E. (Sherman) Tefft. Mr. and Mrs. Scott have one adopted daughter Katie. Mr. Scott has been a member of the council since the incorporation of the town.He is a member of Veritas Lodge, No. 392, A. F. & A. M.; Amity Chapter, No. 93, and Godfrey Commandery, No. 44. He has served as a delegate to the Grand Lodge.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 729.



LAWRENCE SEYLLER, a prominent farmer and successful stockraiser of Cameron Township, was born in Germany,August5, 1850, andis a son of George and Catherine (Haemaser) Seyller. They are the parents of thirteen children, of whom the following are living John,Charles, Conrad, Catherine, George, Nelson, Lawrence (the subject of this biographical sketch), Frank and August.The father is a farmer by occupation. He emigrated with his family to America when Lawrence was an infant, and settled on a farm in Cook County, Illinois, remaining there one year; he then removed to Henry County, Illinois, and bought a farm, on which he still resides.He has been prosperous since coming to America, and has accumulated a comfortable competence for his declining years.Lawrence Seyller is the sixth of the family. He received a districtschool education, and was trained to agricultural pursuits. He continued under the parental roof until his twentyfirst year, when he started in life on his own account. He learned the carpenter's trade, at which he worked for twelve years.Having laid by some money he came to Iowa in 1881 and invested in land; he bought 440 acres, eighty acres lying in Viola Township, and the balance in Cameron Township. Mr. Seyller was not able to pay for all the land in the beginning, buthis hope of success in the future, upon which he depended, was fully realized. He began by raising grain extensively, and later he paid more attention to the raising of hogs and cattle, until in 1888 he shipped five carloads from his own farm, and in 1889 four carloads. His farm is well stocked with a large numberof hogs and cattle. He has some fine thoroughbred Polangus and PolandChina hogs, and is making a specialty of breeding this stock. Mr. Seyller was united in marriage in 1875 to Miss Elizabeth Goembel, of Henry County, Illinois, the fourth child of Henry and Catherine Goembel; she was born in Stark County, Illinois. Four children have been born of thismarriage Vida I., Lee Roy, Mollie May and Hazel C. In politics Mr. Seyller is conservative, voting for the man rather than the party. He began life with pluck and determination to succeed, and the result can best be realized by visiting his farm, which is a model in every respect, having all the modernconveniences for practical farming.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pp. 784.



DARIUS E. SHAUGUR is a member of the firm of D. E. Shaugur & Company, dealers in agricultural implements, Exira, Iowa. His father, Francis J. Shaugur, now deceased, was born in the State of Pennsylvania, but passed most of his early life in Michigan. He died November 17, 1888. He removed from Michigan to Rock Island, Illinois, and was there employed by the Chicago & Rock Island Railroad Company. He commenced at the bottom and climbed, step by step, until he reached the position of conductor, which he held for seventeen years. Mr. Shaugur was married to Miss Anna Hunstead, of Three Rivers, Michigan. She was born in Pennsylvania, and when she was a child her parents removed to Michigan.In the fall of 1869 Mr. Shaugur moved to Audubon County, Iowa, stopping at Louisville and working at the carpenter's trade until his removal to Exira in 1878.He then engaged in the furniture business, and followed it four years. his next enterprise was opening a meat market, at the same time embarking in the agricultural implement business. In 1882 Mr. Shaugur established his present business in company with Washington Stuart, under the firm name of F. J. Shaugur & Company, which continued until the death of F. J. Shaugur. The firm name then became D. E. Shaugur & Company. Francis J. Shaugur was a Royal Arch Mason, and often represented his lodge in the Grand Lodge. He was also a member of the Knights of Pythias and of the I. O. O. F. He had served on the school board, and as treasurer of Exira. He was an active business man, and exhibited much public spirit in encouraging all enterprises tending to build up the interests of the community. Mr. Shaugur was a delegate to the National Convention at St. Louis in 1888, which nominated Grover Cleveland for President of the United States. Four children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Shaugur I. E., Ada L., wife of Arthur Bartlett; D. E. and Frank E. Darius E. is the third child, and was a mere lad when his parents removed to Iowa. He received his education in the common schools, and when quite young began clerking in his father's store. Later on he worked eight months in the recorder's office under Otto Witthauer, and afterward formed a partnership in his father's business, as before stated.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 761.



JEROME SHINGLEDECKER, a successful farmer of Leroy Township, was born in Cass County, Michigan, near Cassopolis, the county seat, January 12, 1848. He is the son of Isaac A. and Barbara (Hain) Shingledecker. Isaac A. Shingledecker was born in Miami County, Ohio, February 20, 1818; his father, Jacob Shingledecker, was a native of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, and was of German ancestry; he was a soldier of the war of 1812, with the rank of Captain.The mother of Isaac Shingledecker was Mary Ann Rue, a native of West Virginia.Isaac A. was married to Barbara Ann Hain March 14, 1844; she was a daughter of Isaac and Elizabeth Hain, of German ancestry. After his marriage Isaac A. Shingledecker and wife resided in Ohio, and then removedto Michigan, where they remained until 1875 when they came to Audubon County, Iowa. The subject of this biography, Jerome Shingledecker, passed his youth and school days in Michigan, where he was reared on a farm, and well trained in all the details of the management of a farm. In 1872 he took a trip to California, where he remained three years engaged in farming. He returned to Michigan, and again went to California, being fairly successful in his business operations. He returned once more to Michigan, where he was married in 1882 to Sarah Adams, a native of Michigan; she is a daughter of Moses and Hannah (Wiley) Adams, natives of Vermont and New York respectively. Mr. and Mrs. Shingledecker have had born to them two sons Clarence and Louis Adams. In the fall of 1883 they removed from Michigan to Audubon County, Iowa, and rented their present farm for three years; at the end of that time they bought the place, which they have made into an attractive, comfortable home.Mr. Shingledecker hasmade many improvements, and has been uniformly successful in the management of his farm. While a resident of Michigan he was a member of the Masonic order at Cassopolis.Politically he is conservative, voting the Republican ticket, but being his own judge as to who is best fitted for positions of trust.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 724.



RICHARD SIBSON, an agriculturist of Viola Township, was born in Cumberland, England, May 31, 1840. He is a son of William and Sarah (Brown) Sibson, who remained in their native land. He was the fourth of a family of six children, and was reared in England.As soon as he was large enough he was, like all boys in mining towns, put to work in the mines at the age of eight years, and passed from one position to another as he increased in size, and knew no other life than this drudging one until he had arrived at man's estate. At the age of twentyfive years, in the year 1865, he emigrated to the United States, landing in the city of New York. He proceeded at once to the coal mines of Pennsylvania, and resumed work in the mines of Mercer County. One year afterward he went to Allegheny County, and worked in the mines for three years. Wishing to secure himself a home he came west, traveling through Illinois, and finally, in 1871, he settled in Polk County, Iowa, and began farming, meeting with success in his new enterprise. He was also engaged in coal mining at Mitchellville, Iowa.Afterward he came to Audubon County, and purchased a tract of new land, which he at once began to improve;he has since made additions to this purchase until he now owns 370 acres.It is a beautiful farm, near the northern borders of the county, adjacent to the Carroll County line. The residence is a fine commodious house, standing on an eminence that commands a view of the surrounding country. The owner's good taste is shown in the ornamental trees and large lawn, and the entire farm is well arranged, and is kept in firstclass order. Mr. Sibson has been a successful breeder and grower of highbred stock, and has given this branch of farming special attention. He has fed as many as 300 head of hogs annually, and raises large numbers of cattle, and Norman and Clydesdale horses. Mr. Sibson was married in his twentyeighth year to Miss Elizabeth Robertson, her parents being of Scotch ancestry. They have a family of four children Walter W., William, Isabel and Richard. Though Mr. Sibson is aRepublican he is considered a liberal, conservative citizen. He is a good business man, and stands high in the estimation of all who know him.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 818.



WILLIAM W. SICKLES, of the firm of Henshaw & Sickles, Exira, Iowa, was born in Warren County, New Jersey, near Johnsonburg, September 21, 1855. He is the oldest son of James S. and Henrietta M. (Ward) Sickles. William W. passed his early school days in New Jersey, being thirteen years old when he came to Clarke County, Iowa; there he spent two years. Having a taste for reading he acquired an education beyond that of the ordinary pupil, and without the aid of an instructor. One winter he attended a select school, and that practically ended his school days. For two years he was employed as a clerk in a hardware store, and then clerked in a drygoods store in Exirauntil 1872.After spending two years farming he took a trip to California. On his return he engaged in the sale of farm implements for three years, and then embarked in the mercantile business on his own account. He opened a general stock of farm implements in partnership with Mrs. Baylor, now Mrs. Watson.This partnership continued twentytwo months, when Mrs. Baylor sold her interests to W. N. Henshaw, a present member of the firm.Henshaw & Sickles carry a full stock, and are active business men, Mr. Sickles devoting the whole of his time to the management of the business. In November, 1883, Mr. Sickles was married to Mary A. Campbell, of Exira, a daughter of E. Campbell, Esq. Mrs. Sickles was born in the State of Wisconsin.By this union three children were born Nettle E., George A. and Lulu Madge. Mr. Sickles is a member of Exodus Lodge, No. 342, A. F. & A. M. He owns a good farm in Exira and Hamlin townships, which contains 200 acres; it is an admirable stock farm, being watered by Davis Creek.The subject of this notice began life at the bottom round of the ladder, but by industry and diligence he has gained an enviable position, socially and financially, in the county. He votes with the Republican party.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 763.



ROBERT SIZER was born in Lincolnshire, England, January 13, 1840, and is a son of George and Jane (Randalls) Sizer, who remained in the old country, the father being a small farmer. When ten years old Robert Sizer emigrated to the United States with his uncle, John Barker.They proceeded by water to Davenport, Iowa, stopping there one year; from Davenport Robert went to Comanche, Iowa, remaining there about twelve months; at the expiration of this time he went to Jackson County, Iowa, and was there employed on a farm, working by the month for four years.He then left the State of Iowa and went to Camden, Illinois, and worked in a brickyard one summer. Mercer County, Illinois, was his next place of abode, and he remained there until 1861, at which time he returned to Jackson County, Iowa. In August, 1861, Mr. Sizer joined the M. S. Lancers, three months' men, who were engaged in State service.After this company disbanded he returned to Jackson County. In August, 1862, he enlisted in Company A, Twentyfourth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and was sent to Muscatine, Iowa. On the organization of the regiment he was sent to Helena, Arkansas, at which place he scouted and skirmished until 1862; he then entered General Grant's campaign and took part in all the engagements; among themare Fort Gibson, Champion Hills, the siege of Vicksburg, which lasted fortytwo days, many skirmishes and small engagements.After the fall of Vicksburg he was assigned to the chief department under General Banks, and later he was transferred to the department under General Sheridan in the Shenandoah Valley, taking part in all the engagements of that campaign.After some further service he was ordered to Davenport, Iowa, and was honorably discharged and received his pay. Returning to Jackson County, Iowa, Mr. Sizer engaged in farming, which he followed successfully until the spring of 1881, when he removed to Audubon County, Iowa, and purchased his present farm in Hamilton Township; the farm contains 310 acres, which at that time had no improvements in the way of buildings. The land is now under a high state of cultivation, and there is a substantial residence attractively surrounded by evergreen trees. Mr. Sizer was united in marriage January 4, 1865, to Anna, the youngest daughter of John and Sarah Davis, of Jackson County, Iowa. Mrs. Sizer was born in Canada. Five children have been born of this union Thaddeus, Sarah E., Clara, James, and one child that died in infancy. Mr. Sizer is a member of Allison Post, No. 31, G. A. R. He began his career penniless and among strangers, but by energy and industry he has accumulated a goodly competence for his declining years.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 769.



CHARLES SMITH, a thriving agriculturist of Hamlin Township, was born in HesseDarmstadt, Germany, July 10, 1851, and is the oldest living son of Adam and Frederika Smith, who emigrated to America when Charles was five years of age. They landed in the city of New York, and after stopping there a short time they proceeded to Carroll County, Illinois, and there settled on a farm, where the father died March 26, 1882.His wife, who survives him, is living on the old homestead in Carroll County, Illinois. Of her eight children four are living. Charles Smith spent his youthin Carroll County, Illinois, attending the district school during the winters, and assisting his father on the farm during the summers. He remained under the parental roof untilhis twentythird year, when he began farming on his own account, in which he was fairly successful. He remained in Carroll County until 1882, when he came to Audubon County and invested in 120 acres of land, upon which he has made many valuable improvements. Formerly Mr. Smith followed general farming, but of late years he has turned his attention to stockraising and feeding, and has been very prosperous in this department of agriculture. Charles Smith was united in marriage to Dora Dahler, of Carroll County, Illinois, a daughter of Henry and Lizzie Dahler, both natives of Germany. Five children have been born of this union Lewis, Adam, Louisa, Clara and Lena. Mr. Smith has served as township trustee, and takes an active interest in the success of the Democratic party. He began his career on the bottom round of the ladder, and while he has had his ups and downs, he has succeeded well, and today holds an enviable position among Audubon County farmers.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 737.



ISAAC L. STATZELL, attorney at law, Exira,Iowa, wasborn in Hendricks County, Indiana, near Danville, February 16, 1861. Isaac Statzell, his father, was a native of the State of Pennsylvania, and his mother, AbigailJ. (Griggs) Statzell, was born in Virginia, and was the daughter of Hiram and Elizabeth Griggs. Isaac L., the subject of this biography, is the fourth child in a family of seven, two boys and five girls, all of whom are living.He passed his boyhood on his father's farm, and received his primary educationin the district school. Later he attended a select school, and finally entered the State Normal School at Terre Haute, Indiana.After leaving school he engaged in teaching, but about the year 1882 he became connected with a newspaper called the Audubon County Defender, published at Exira, Iowa.Daring his connection with this paper he read law, and at the expiration of two years he entered the law office of J. M. & R. W. Griggs. After his admission to the bar, Mr. Statzell commenced practice alone in Exira, and since that time he has devoted his whole time to his profession. He practices in all the State and county courts. Mr. Statzell is a member of Exodus Lodge, No. 342, A. F. & A. M., of which he is senior warden.He also has a membership in the A. O. U. W. and the Knights of Pythias. He is an active worker in the interests of the Republican party, attending conventions as a delegate and otherwise serving his party diligently and faithfully.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 760.



HON. RUSSELL A. STEERE was born in Jefferson County, Ohio, March 27, 1821. His father, David Steere, was a miller by trade, and was born in Virginia, of French parentage, in August, 1786. His father was Joseph Steere. The Steere family settled in South Carolina in 1700; six generations have been born in America, the first settlers having been French Huguenots. The mother of Russell A. Steere was Phoebe Milhous, who was born in the city of Philadelphia, where she grew to womanhood. Her father was William Milhous, a native of Pennsylvania, of German descent. Russell A. Steere passed his early boyhood in Ohio, and in 1833 went out to Michigan, remaining there until he was eighteen years of age; he then entered Mount Pleasant College, a Quaker institution in Jefferson County, Ohio, and was graduated in 1841. He then began his career as a teacher, and taught in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia. In 1844 he went to Cincinnati, and was there employed in an importing drygoods establishment until 1847 when he enlisted in the Mexican war, entering Company B, Second Ohio, Charles Broughf acting as Colonel of the Regiment; he was sent to Matamoras, and then to Vera Cruz, where many of the soldiers took the yellow fever; all of the officers and many soldiers died. Mr. Steere was sent to New Orleans, and was there placed in the hospital under the care of the Sisters of Charity. After being mustered out of the service he returned to Cincinnati, Ohio, and resumed his place in the wholesale house, remaining there until 1853, when he went to Minnesota, and settled in Fillmore County. In 1864, when there was a call for more men to defend the flag of this nation, Mr. Steere again shouldered his musket, and enlisted in Company A, Second Minnesota Volunteer Infantry; he was sent south, and joined Sherman's army at Savannah, and took part in the pursuit of General Johnston, who surrendered at Raleigh. He was then ordered to Washington, D. C., took part in the grand review, was mustered out July 11, 1865; was paid at Fort Snelling, and received his final discharge July 20, 1865. Mr. Steere was married in December, 1855, to Miss Alice King, a daughter of John E. King, a native of England. She was born in Illinois. Eight children were born of this marriage Edmund H., Ernest K., Samuel H. (deceased), Francis V. (deceased), Lincoln, Elinor, Alice M. and David. After returning from the war, Mr. Steere began farming near Spring Valley, Minnesota, and remained there until 1867, when he removed with his family to Michigan and bought a farm in Branch County, and lived upon it until 1872; he then went back to Minnesota, attended to some business, and in October, 1873, he removed his family to Audubon County, residing the first two years at Oakfield. In 1875 he moved to his present farm, which contains 160 acres; since his residence there Mr. Steere has devoted all of his time to directing and improving his farm; he gives special attention to raising livestock. While living in Minnesota, Mr. Steere was elected a member of the Legislature, and was appointed to the offices of county commissioner and county clerk. He also filled several township offices, acquitting himself in all these positions with much credit. He is a member of the Masonic order, and of the I. O. O. F. He is a member of the Union League, and is a staunch temperence man. Politically he is a Republican; he was born and raised a Whig. He voted for General Harrison in 1840, and for Benjamin Harrison in 1888. He is a member of the G. A. R.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 698.



MEAD P. STRAHL, an agriculturist of Viola Township, was born in Belmont County, Ohio, August 29, 1844, and is the youngest of seven children of Thomas and Sarah (Mead) Strahl. The pareats were born and reared in Ohio, and the mother died there when Mead P. was one year old; his father removed to Illinois, and thence to Nebraska, where he died in 1878. Sarah Mead was a daughter of Joseph Mead, a native of Pennsylvania, of Quaker faith; he was an early settler of Belmont County, Ohio.Mead P. Strahl passed his youth in his native county, receiving his education in the pioneer log schoolhouse.In the spring of 1866 he went to Ogle County, Illinois, and engaged in farming, making his home there until 1883, when he removed to Audubon County.Hepurchased160 acres of choice land, whichis now well improved; there is a good substantial residence, barns and cribs, and the situation and neighborhood cannot be surpassed. Mr. Strahl devotes his time to general farming and stockraising. He was married in 1870 to Miss Alice J. Donaldson, of Ogle County, Illinois, a daughter of James and Kate Donaldson; she was born and reared in Ogle County. Ten children have been born of this marriage Eva J., Ida F., James C., Ella G., Frank, Fred T., William S., Myrtle A., Verna K. and Pearl. Mr. Strahl is director of school district No. 4, and is supervisor of road district No. 3. In June, 1863, he enlisted in the One Hundred and Twentyninth Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and served nine months. He took part in the raid in Cumberland Gap and capture of General Frazier; thence he was ordered to Clinch River, and in March, 1864, he was mustered out of the service. He reenlisted in the 100days' regiment, and did duty in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia under General Sheridan.At the expiration of the 100 days he enlisted in the Fifteenth Ohio Volunteers as a recruit, serving until the close of the war. He was ordered north in December, 1865, and was discharged the 28th of that month.He then returned to his old home in Ohio, and engaged in the more peaceful as well as more profitable occupation of farming. Mr. Strahl is a member of the G. A. R. post at Dedham, Carroll County, Iowa. He began life with little capital but pluck, energy and a determination to succeed, and these traits have brought their reward.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 793.



WILLIAM G. STUART, junior member of the firm of Charles Stuart & Son, dealersin lumber, grain and stock, Audubon, Iowa, was born in Stark County, Illinois, October, 1856. He is the son of Charles and Lois G. (Gray) Stuart, natives of the State of Vermont, who, after their marriage, removed to Stark County, Illinois, where they were early settlers. Captain Stuart was an active man and stockraiser, and accumulated property rapidly, Having some surplus capital, he came to Audubon County, Iowa, and bought large tracts of land which he improved and stocked to their fullest extent. He had established his large ranch in Melville Township before the town of Audubon was platted. His present stock ranch consists of six sections of land, the greater part of which is under fine cultivation.It all lies in one body and is well fenced, so that stock can be handled to good advantage.A part of the land is set apart for the cultivation of corn, which Mr. Stuart raises extensively.He also buys large quantities of the neighboring farmers. Large numbers of cattle and hogs are fed on the Stuart ranch, and for the past few years special attention has been given to the breeding of Percheron and Clydesdale horses. Two hundred tons of hay are annually cut on the place.The ranch is conducted under the immediate direction of W. G. Stuart. Although he resides in Audubon, he visits the place almost daily; he also has telephone connection between his office in town and the ranch. At present there are 1,100 head of cattle on the farm, some of which are thoroughbred, andothers of which are high grades mixed.Their annual sales are from 600 to 1,000 head. The farms are well provided with sheds for the protection of the stock, and they are all well supplied with water. In 1878, after the starting of the town of Audubon, Charles Stuart established a lumber yard and built a large grain elevator, where he deals in lumber and grain quite extensively. On the completion of the Rock Island & Pacific Railway to Audubon, Mr. Stuart erected his office, which is of a very attractive design andfinish. The entire building is of St. Louis pressed brick, and the interior is furnished with every modern convenience. William G. Stuart also has charge of the grain and lumber business, Charles Stuart being still a resident of Illinois. The firm employs from thirtyfive to forty men during the year.Mr. Stuart was married in 1882 to Miss Annis Randolph, of Tama County, Iowa, where she was born and reared. She is a daughter of John Randolph, a resident of Audubon County.Mr. and Mrs. Stuart are the parents of two children Lois and Charles. Mr. Stuart has served one term as a member of the town council, and in National and State elections he votes the Republican ticket.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 754.



WILLIAM L. SWANEY has been identified with the interests of Audubon County since 1873. Unlike many of the residents of the Hawkeye State, he has the honor to have been born within her borders, and February 21, 1847, is the date of his birth, and Jackson County, near Preston, is the place. He is the son of David and Sidney (Latta) Swaney, natives of Pennsylvania and Ohio respectively. They were married in Ohio, and soon after removed to Michigan andsettled in Ann Arbor; thence they went to Jackson County, Iowa, in May, 1839, being among the pioneers of the county. David Swaneywas a son of James Swaney, a native of Ireland, who was a soldier in the British army. David died in Jackson County, Iowa, in 1883, in his seventyfifth year.The mother of our subject wasborn in 1818, and reared eight children, four sons and four daughters Nancy J., wife of D. Baldwin; James, Angeline, wife of George Lucas; Mary A., wife of William Mills; William L., the subject of this sketch; Medora, wife of William Rutledge; Milton L. and Alonzo. William L. passed his boyhood in his native county, receiving a commonschool education; he remained with his parents until his twentyfirst year, when he took up the responsibilities of life and began to carve out his own fortune. in the summer of 1873 he came to Audubon County and purchased eighty acres of wild prairie land.The following spring he moved his familyto the new home, where they bravely faced many of the privations incident to pioneer life.Mr. Swaney has put all the improvements upon the place, and has added from time to time to his first purchase, until he now owns 400 acres in one body.A part of the farm is seeded down to pasture and the balance is under cultivation.Mr. Swaney pays special attention to feeding livestock, shipping large numbers annually; he has been quite successful in this department of agriculture. In 1873, February 12, occurred themarriage of William L. Swaney and Arminda Wilson, a native of the State of New York, and a daughter of A. Wilson, Esq., who died in this county. Her mother's maiden name was Bacon; she is still living. Mr. and Mrs. Swaney have had born to them six children David L., Ada M., Wilson Bacon, Milton, Minerva G. and Albert J. Mr. Swaney has served as justice of the peace since coming to the county, except one year; he has also represented his township as trustee and as a member of the school board and as assessor, to the entire satisfaction of the public. He is a member of Veritas Lodge, No. 392, A. F. & A. M., having been made a Mason in Jackson County, Iowa.In State and National affairs he supports the issues of the Democratic party, but in local matters he votes for the man best fitted for the office in his estimation. He commenced lifewith no capital excepting that with which nature endowed him, pluck, energy and a determination to succeed; that he has succeeded is demonstrated when one takes a look at his broad acres in a high state of cultivation, and all the modern improvements upon his farm. Everything is arranged for comfort and convenience, and the air of thrift and prosperity about Mr. Swaney's farm places him in the front ranks of Audubon County's agriculturists.
   From:  1889 Biographical History of Shelby and Audubon counties, pg. 816.


Contributed by Marthann Kohl-Fuhs, April, 2005.

 
Site Terms, Conditions & Disclaimer
Home > Top