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Audubon County


1915 Bios Index


Thomas McMichael, who owns one hundred and twenty acres of splendid land in Cameron township, Audubon county, Iowa, is one of the successful and skillful farmers of this township, who was born in Muscatine county, Iowa, March 19, 1855. Mr. McMichael's parents, James and Margaret (McCullough) McMichael, were natives of Ireland. James McMichael came to America when a young man and first located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he was married, and where he remained until he moved to Muscatine county, Iowa. There he purchased a farm and was engaged in farming the remainder of his life. He and his wife were the parents of eight children, seven of whom are still living: James, William, Thomas, George, John, Anna and Barbara. The father of these children died on January 9, 1907 and the mother in March, 1914.

Thomas McMichael, the subject of this sketch, received practically all of his education in Muscatine county, Iowa, to which his parents had moved after leaving Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Mr. McMichael's life during his youth was that of the average boy in this section of the state. After leaving school he worked with his father on the farm until 1882, when he was twenty-seven years old. He then moved to Audubon county and located in Cameron township, where he bought one hundred and twenty acres of land, the farm upon which he now lives and on which, at the time, the soil had never been broken, Mr. McMichael being the first to work the ground. He has put many valuable improvements upon the farm at a cost of at least four thousand dollars. Originally, he paid only eight dollars an acre for the land, but it is many times as valuable today. He raises forty acres of corn and at least twenty-five acres of small grain each year. He also feeds about twenty-five head of hogs and sells most of his grain.

Thomas McMichael was married on September 23, 1887, when he was thirty-two years old to Ettie Gray, the daughter of W. F. and Hannah (Crow) Gray. Two children, Homer and Leslie, have been born to this marriage, both of whom are unmarried and live at home with their parents.

Mrs. McMichael was born in Fayette county, Iowa; her father was a native of Canada and her mother of the state of Ohio. Her father came to Fayette county, Iowa, when a young man and was married there and farmed in that county until 1880, when he moved to Audubon county, locating in Cameron township, where he purchased eighty acres of land, from which he has retired and lives at Gray, Iowa. He and his wife had seven children, five of whom are now living: Alonzo, Arthur, Mrs. Effie Farnham, Mrs. Ethel Baldwin and Mrs. McMichael.

Mr. and Mrs. McMichael and family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. McMichael is not identified with any political party, but is altogether independent in his voting. He has never been active in politics, however, and has never held office.

Few farmers in Cameron township have paid closer attention to the details of modern farming than Thomas McMichael and few men have a better farm than he. Not only is he considered a successful farmer but he is a man who has made many warm friends in this part of Audubon county--friends who respect and admire him for his high moral character and cordial, friendlv manners.

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. 523-524.
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