IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.

John Geraghty

John Geraghty has long been numbered among the substantial, agriculturists of Clayton county, is a representative of a sterling pioneer family of this section of the state and has here maintained his home since he was a lad of seven years. He has shown the sturdy purpose, industry and progressiveness that are the distinct urge to worthy success and is to be considered one of the really; representative citizens of Giard township, where he is the owner of a well improved farm, his home receiving mail service on Rural Route No. 1 from the village of McGregor.

Mr. Geraghty was born in the city of New Orleans, Louisiana, on the 8th of June, 1847, and is a son of Patrick and Anna (Kelly) Geraghty, both native of County Mayo, Ireland, where the former was born March 17, 1816, and the latter in the year 1814, their marriage having been solemnized in their native land. In 1846 this aspiring young couple emigrated to America, confident of their ability to gain in this country the goal of definite prosperity. They remained about one year in the city of New Orleans and thence went to Loveland, Ohio, in which State Patrick Geraghty found employment at railroad work until 1855, when he came with his family to Clayton county, Iowa, and became one of the pioneer settlers of Giard township, where he obtained a tract of eighty acres of wild land and began the reclamation of a farm. Prosperity attended his earnest and indefatigable efforts and he was eventually enabled to add to the area of his farm until he had a valuable landed estate of two hundred and forty acres. He erected good buildings on the homestead and there continued to reside, as one of the prosperous an popular citizens of the county, until the time of his death, which occurred December 8, 1892. He was undeviating in his allegiance to the Democratic party and took a lively interest in commum affairs, as was shown by his being called upon to serve as road supervisor and also as a director of his school district. Both he and his wife were earnest communicants of the Catholic church, in the faith of which they carefully reared their children, and Mrs. Geraghty survived her honored husband by less than five years, as she was summoned to the life eternal on the 19th of March, 1897.

Of the children the subject of this sketch is the eldest and the only one of the number born in Louisiana; Patrick is a resident of Monona, this county; Mary is the widow of Thomas McGovern and resides in the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota; Michael and Catherine are deceased; James is a substantial farmer of Giard township, and Anna is deceased.

John Geraghty was an infant at the time of his parents removal to Ohio and was a lad of seven years when removal was made to Clayton county, where he has marked the passing years with worthy achievement and where he has inviolable place in popular confidence and esteem. His early education was acquired in the pioneer schools of Giard township and he continued to be a valued assistant in the work of his father’s farm until 1875, when, at the age of twenty-eight years, he purchased eighty acres of land in Giard township, this being part of the old homestead of his father. Later he added eighty acres to the area of his farm, which, under this industrious and well-ordered management, has been developed into one of the finely improved and most productive places in Giard township, the same being devoted to diversified agriculture and to the raising of excellent grades of live stock.

Mr. Geraghty is found aligned as a supporter of the cause of the Republican party, is a loyal and public-spirited citizen and served for the long period of twenty-three ears in the office of township assessor, his careful and effective administration having created none of the enmities that often attend such official prerogatives and having been most satisfactory a popular sense. He and his wife are zealous communicants of the Catholic church and he is affiliated with the Knights of Columbus.

On the 18th of April, 1876, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Geraghty to Miss Anna English, who was born in County Mayo, Ireland, on the 16th of April, 1855, and who gained her early education in the parochial schools of her native land. In 1869, when she was a girl of fourteen years, she accompanied her parents their emigration to the United States, and the family home was soon afterward established in Mendon township, Clayton county, where her parents, Anthony and Honora (Solon) English, passed the residue of their lives, honored by all who knew them and both earnest communicants of the Catholic church. Mr. English became one of the prosperous farmers of Mendon township and was influential in local affairs, his political support having given to the Democratic party.

Mr. and Mrs. Geraghty became the parents of ten children, concerning whom brief mention is made in conclusion of this review; Patrick is now residing in the city of St. Paul, Minnesota ; John, Jr., is associated with agricultural industry in Mendon township; Michael is a resident of Sioux City, this State; James and Francis are deceased; Thomas maintains his home in the city of Great Falls, Montana; Joseph is associated in the work and management of the home farm; James is deceased, and Catherine and Edward are the younger members of the family circle of the parental home, which is known for its hospitality and good cheer.

source: History of Clayton County, Iowa; From The Earliest Historical Times Down to the Present; by Realto E. Price, Vol. II; page 136-137
-transcribed by Mary Cameron


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