Buena Vista County, IA
USGenWeb Project

Extracted from:  Wegerslev, C. H. and Thomas Walpole. 
 Past and Present of Buena Vista County, Iowa
Chicago:  S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1909, p. 544-45.

Transcribed by Paul Nagy

Biography of  John F. Mudge

John F. Mudge is one of the wealthy landowners of Buena Vista county, and at the same time he is numbered among its most highly respected citizens.  He owns four hundred and forty acres of land, situated on section 15, Hayes township, and gives his time to general agricultural pursuits and to stock-raising.  Mr. Mudge was born in La Salle county, Illinois, April 15, 1856, a son of Charles and Eunice (Gunn) Mudge.


John F. Mudge was reared on the home farm in La Salle county and was afforded good educational advantages.  His common and high school course was supplemented by a year's study in Eureka College, in Woodford county, Illinois, after which he returned once more to the homestead farm.  He assisted his father in carrying on the work of the fields and also in the erection of a stone house.  When he started out in life on his own account he chose the occupation to which he had been reared and rented the home place, which he cultivated for several years.  He prospered in his undertakings and from the annual sale of his crops acquired a competence that enabled him to eventually invest in land.  For this purpose, in 1893, he came to Buena Vista county and purchased the south half of section 15, Hayes township.  Locating here he continued the work of improvement that had been begun.  He built to and remodeled the house, put in a furnace, a system of waterworks, bath and other conveniences such as are found in the city homes and made it a most up-to-date residence.  He has also built two good barns, large cribs, has set out a grove and orchard and none of the conveniences and accessories of a model farm are found lacking.  Mr. Mudge has since added to his original holdings a tract of one hundred and twelve acres on section 16, so that his farm now embraces four hundred and forty acres all in one body.  Although he has prospered in his undertakings he is not unmindful of the duties of citizenship and gives his support to every movement which is calculated to benefit his home locality.


Mr. Mudge was married in La Salle county, Illinois, February 12, 1878, to Miss Hattie L. Snyder, who was born and reared there.  She became the mother of six sons and three daughters:  Arthur S., who follows farming at Tonica, Illinois; Ida, the wife of Fred Crowley, a farmer of Hayes township; George W., a young man at home; Beulah, who is acting as her father's housekeeper; and Karl, Guy, Ray and Harold, all under the parental roof.  One daughter, Nellie, died at the age of sixteen years.  The wife and mother departed this life January 3l, l906, and her remains were interred in the Storm Lake cemetery.  She was a lady highly esteemed by her neighbors and friends and was devoted to her family, so that her loss has been deeply felt.


Politically Mr. Mudge is a democrat where national issues are involved but at local elections he votes independently.  He was first elected to fill a vacancy in the office of township trustee and through reelection capably and efficiently served for fourteen years.  He has also been identified with the school board for a number of years.  Although not a native of Buena Vista county, Mr. Mudge has thoroughly identified himself with its interests and takes a just pride in the progress that is here being made.  He attributes his success not to any fortunate circumstances but to hard work, economy and persistency of purpose, and his success should serve as a lesson to the young men of today who are compelled to start out in life dependent upon their own resources, for he has worked his way upward until now he is classed among the substantial citizens of Hayes township and Buena Vista county.