Cerro Gordo County Iowa
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WHEELER, J.H. Vol. II. Pp. 728-29. Lewis Pub. Co. Chicago. 1910


Probably no citizen in the length and breadth of Cerro Gordo county can more truly be accounted a self made man than John Dawson, a farmer residing in section 8 of Lake township. He has proved that the best silver spoon to have in one's mouth at birth is courage, and presistent industry and the manner in which he has utilized the natural resources of his adopted country is a credit to him. Mr. Dawson is British in nationality, having been born in Lincolnshire, England, October 10, 1843. His parents were Carter and Charlotta (Wills) Dawson. The father died in 1848, at the age of thirty-four years, but the mother survived for many years, departing this life in 1874. They were the parents of three children, Mr. Dawson being the only one of these who survived.

Deprived of his natural protector at the early age of five years, John Dawson was as soon as possible launched forth upon his own resources. His first occupation was picking up potatoes, for which he received the enormous compensation of six cents a day. Naturally his education was neglected, there being little time to attend school. In 1866 he married and in 1872 he left his wife and four children in England and started for America. He landed at Quebec with three cents of his savings in his pocket and two dollars and a half which a man had given him for looking after some horses while on board ship. He went to Franklin county, New York, and secured employment on a farm and in 1873 found himself in a position to send for his wife and children. Soon afterward he came west and located in Cerro Gordo county, working rented land in Lake township. By the exercise of great thrift he was able in 1882 to purchase his present farm of one hundred and fifty acres. He has done wonders in his improvement of this place and whereas when he bought the farm it did not produce over twenty bushels of corn to the acre, last year it averaged seventy bushels to the acre. He started into the dairy business at once and has conducted that with great profit in connection with his farming. In 1903 he gave its management into the hands of his daughter, Charlotta A., who has ever since successfully operated the Clear Lake Dairy, as it is called. She understands every detail of the work, milking the cows, delivering the milk, and proving her competence with financial results. Mr. Dawson has also recently rented his farm and has partially retired from hard work. For a number of years Mr. Dawson gave his support to the Democratic party, but recently has voted the Republican ticket. He served at one time as school director of Lake township.

Mr. Dawson was married in England, May 15, 1866, to Elizabeth Daubney, who was born in England April 21, 1846. To the union were born twelve children, the following seven surviving: Elizabeth A., wife of Isaac Furley, of Lake township; Robert J. and James H., who resides in North Dakota; Charlotta A., owner of the Clear Lake Dairy; Charles C., of Lincoln township; Frederick H., of Clear Lake township; and George C., of North Dakota.

In addition to his Iowa property Mr. Dawson owns one hundred and sixty acres of improved land in North Dakota.

NOTE: Elizabeth R. (Daubney) Dawson died on January 18, 1923. Children of John and Elizabeth Dawson also interred at Clear Lake Cemetery are:
Frederick Hugo Dawson, born March 20, 1881, died December 26, 1947; Frederick's wife, Ethel May Dawson, born November 30, 1881, and died April 28, 1933; Willie R. Dawson, born March 9, 1884, died September 9, 1884; Lulu Dawson, born January 22, 1888, died July 30, 1896; and, infant Dawson, born March 14, 1889, and died March 20, 1889.

Transcription and note by Sharon R. Becker, February of 2014



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