IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.

Charles E. Witt

Charles E. Witt has been a resident of Clayton county since he was a lad of about seven years and is now numbered among the representative farmers and substantial and popular citizens of Monona township, where he owns and resides upon a finely improved farm of two hundred and four acres and where he stands exponent of loyal and progressive citizenship.

He was born in Mecklenburg, Germany, on the 9th day of December, 1866, and is the eldest of a family of three children; his sister Emma is the wife of Henry Bruns, of Monona, this county; and the younger sister, Clara, is the wife of Leroy Hunter, of Winneshiek county. Fredrick and Dora (Rhode) Witt, parents of the subject of this sketch, were born and reared in the Province of Mecklenburg, and the former served three years in the German Army, in consonance with governmental regulations. In 1873 Fredrick Witt immigrated with his family to the United States, as he was dependent upon his own exertions in providing for his family and felt assured that in America he would find better opportunities for the winning of success and independence. In June of the year mentioned he established the family home in the little hamlet of National, Clayton county, and after devoting three years to work in the employ of others he rented a farm and engaged in agricultural enterprise in an independent way. Later, he purchased and improved a farm in Giard township, where he continued his industrious activities until advancing years and stable prosperity justified his retirement from the arduous labors and heavy responsibilities that had long been his portion, and since that time he and his wife have maintained their home in the village of Monona, with a circle of friends that is limited only by that of their acquaintances. Mr. Witt is a Democrat in his political proclivities, and both he and his wife are devoted communicants of the German Lutheran church, in which he has served many years as deacon.

Charles E. Witt gained his early education in the village school at National and the district schools of Giard township after the family home had been established on the farm. He continued to assist in the work and management of his father's farm until he had attained to the age of seventeen years, and then went to Nebraska, in which state he remained only a short time. After his return to Clayton county he was employed as a farm hand for three years and for the ensuing five years was again associated with the work and management of his father's farm. He then, in 1892, purchased one hundred and forty-four acres of his present farm, the subsequent addition being in purchase of a contiguous sixty acres, and his thrift and good judgment are clearly shown forth in the admirable appearance of all departments of the fine farm, on which he gives special at-tention to the raising of high-grade cattle, though he is equally successful in his operations in connection with diversified and well ordered agricultural enterprise. Mr. Witt erected his present residence, which is a commodious house of modern design and facilities, and the other buildings which he has provided further tend to mark him as a broad-gauged and progressive representative of the great basic industries to which he is giving his attention. He is a director of the Monona State Bank and his popularity and influential position in his home community are emphatically indicated by the fact that he has served consecutively since 1910 as representative of Monona township on the county board of supervisors. He served several terms as township assessor, and is a recognized leader in popular sentiment and action in Monona township. His progressiveness is of the most distinct type and it should be especially noted that for several years past he has served as president of the Co-operative Commission Association, composed of representative farmers of Clayton county. At Monona he is affiliated with the lodge of Ancient Free & Accepted Masons and with the camp of the Woodmen of the World. He is a stalwart in the ranks of the Democratic party and is influential in its councils in Clayton county.

March 10, 1893, recorded the marriage of Mr. Witt to Miss Cora May Mathews, daughter of James and Libby (Mulholland) Mathews, of Wagner township, this county. Of the three children born to Mr. and Mrs. Witt the first was Fred, who was born February 7th, 1894, and died on the 13th of the same month; the surviving children are Ethel, who was born July 7th, 1896, and Donald, who was born July 22nd, 1901.

source: History of Clayton County, Iowa; From The Earliest Historical Times Down to the Present; by Realto E. Price, Vol. II; pg. 449-450

-OCR scanned by S. Ferrall


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