IAGenWeb Project

Audubon County


1915 Bios Index


A prominent farmer and an influential citizen of Exira township, and a native of the little kingdom of Denmark, is John N. Esbeck, who owns one hundred and forty-five acres of land in Exira township, and who was born in Denmark on July 29, 1867, the son of Chris N. and Catherine (Mortensen) Esbeck, both natives of Denmark. The former was a farmer in his native land, and came to the United States in 1868, one year after the birth of John N. Chris Esbeck located first in Illinois after arriving in America, but only lived in that state for one year, when he removed to Guthrie county, Iowa, where he was employed on the Rock Island railroad, helping to construct the road from the east through to Council Bluffs, Iowa. In 1873, he removed to Missouri, where he was engaged in railroading, and in 1881 he came to Audubon county, and after locating in Oakfield township, purchased a farm of one hundred and sixty acres, and farmed in this township until his death in 1888. His wife died in 1887, after having reared a family of ten children, three of whom are living, Mary, Alfred and John N. Mary is the wife of Jens P. Hanson. Alfred married Grace Huyck.

Educated in the public schools of the state of Missouri, John N. Esbeck removed to Audubon county with his parents about the time he finished school, and engaged in farming with his father until he was twenty years of age. Beginning at the age of twenty years, he worked in the implement business at Kimballton, Iowa, for four years, after which he purchased eighty acres of land in Oakfield township, where he farmed for five years. Disposing of his farm in Oakfield township, he purchased one hundred and twenty acres in Douglas township, and farmed there for about eleven years, when he again sold out and purchased the place upon which he now lives. Since acquiring possession of this farm in 1910, Mr. Esbeck has invested about six thousand dollars in buildings, fences, drains and other forms of improvement on the farm. He raises on ah average of fifty acres of corn, thirty acres of small grains and feeds out fifty head of hogs each year.

On March 22, 1895, John N. Esbeck was married to Ingeborg Nissen, the daughter of Nis and Johanna Nissen, and to this union have been born six children, Edna, Esther, Catherine, Lela, Agnes and Arnold, all of whom are living at home with their parents.

A charter member of the Knights of Pythias lodge at Kimballto, Iowa, Mr. Esbeck has been prominent in this organization. He and his wife and family are earnest and faithful members of the Danish Lutheran church. A Republican in politics, he has served as assessor of Oakfield township for four years, as township clerk of Douglas township for seven years, and also as a school director at various places. As one of the leading citizens and farmers of Exira township, Mr. Esbeck is known to be keenly interested in educational affairs, and in the public positions which he has held, he has acquitted himself with credit, and has won honor by his efficient service. He is known to be honorable and straightforward in all of the private relations of life.

Transcribed from History of Audubon County, Iowa Its People, Industries and Institutions With Biographical Sketches of Representative Citizens and Genealogical Records of Many of the Old Families, by H. F. Andrews, editor, Indianapolis: B. F. Bowen & Company, 1915, pp. 697-698.
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