by Margaret Corwin & Helen Hoy
Nelson Fancher, an ex-California gold miner, opened Waterloo's first general store in 1853 when he took his "fine span of bay horses, Dick and Ned" to Dubuque and loaded up on dry goods, ready-made clothing and farm implements which sold like "hot cakes." He married Elizabeth Virden. photo: from Harman History.
John H. Leavitt was president for 50 years of what
later came to be called the Leavitt & Johnson Bank and in that interim
was one of the pillars of the community. With four other citizens, he
founded the First Congregational Church and for fifty years served as
trustee chairman and was one of its most faithful members. In 1870-1871
he was elected to serve in the State Senate. He was chairman of the
committee which brought the Illinois Central machine shops in 1869 from
Dubuque to Waterloo as well as chairing the committee which secured the
Chicago Great Western Railway for the city.
Lorraine Washburn, son of
pioneer, Levi Washburn, and a private in the Third Iowa Infantry, was the
first Waterloo soldier killed at Blue Mills Landing, MO. When the train
brought Peter Dorlan, the first wounded man home on a cot, businesses were
closed and the plow left, to welcome the hero home.
Henry Nauman, Waterloo's first manufacturer, came
to the town in 1856, and hauled all the material used in building his
home from Dubuque.
Rensselaer Russell, lent his money and name to the Russell-Lamson Hotel. In 1857 he started up his own banking business with M H Moore which opened the First National Bank in 1865. He sold out of the banking business and then went into real estate full time. His first daughter, Genevieve, died at age six and his second daughter, Lillian waited for marriage until after the death of her father. She then married Clyde Lamson, builder of the Russell-Lamson Hotel in 1914. Photo from Hartman History
Matt Parrott, born in New York, was a Waterloo publisher
and one of the city's most honored state officials, serving as
lieutenant-governor of Iowa in 1985. In 1869 he and J J Smart bought the
democratic Iowa State Reporter from H Q Nickelsen. Mr. Parrott served on
the City Council from 1877 -1881, was Mayor in 1877, re-elected for two
more terms, and candidate for governor in 1897. He died in April, 1900.
To find out about acquiring a copy of the book, "Waterloo, A
Pictorial History." contact: