When the early settlers began to locate in this county they passed over Hampshire and sought, as they then supposed, more desirable locations.  But future developments show the error into which they were led, for to-day there is not a township of finer farming land within the limits of the county than Hampshire.  The land is all, or nearly so, fine rolling prairie, without waste, and is all under cultivation, there being only 2,692 acres of unimproved land reported by the census returns of 1875, and which number has been largely reduced since that time.

Hampshire Township was organized on the 20th of February, 1857, and the first election thereafter was held at the Hess Schoolhouse on the first Monday in April, 1857.

Among the first settlers of Hampshire may be named Robert Horner, Charles Finch, J. J. Determan, Henry Determan, John Hamilton, B. McLaughlin, Mr. Lillie, G. W. Creveling, George Pearce, E. Albright, A. J. Albright, Samuel Albright, Albert Hammond, Asa Hammond, Mr. Blessington and his four sons, the Mannings, Mr. Bouck, the Keelers, Mr. Ryder, the Diercks, Nicholas Schwartz, the Studemans, George and Chester Baker, James Dolan, Martin Dolan, James Rogan, Mr. Kessler and others.

This township would have been bisected by a railway had not the old "Calico" road failed; but -- having no railway through its territory, nor mill sites, and being contiguous to Lyons and Clinton; which are its market towns -- no villages have sprung up within its limits.  On Section 17, at the residence of Mr. J. C. Teitjens, is a hamlet, and some manufacturing of wagons, etc., is carried on.  Ennis & Patton's extensive nurseries are also in this township in the southeastern part.

The township is largely settled by German and Irish farmers, and, with few exceptions, the farms are moderate in area, and are under an excellent state of cultivation.

The schools are numerous, and school building good.

In the northeastern part of the township on Section 7, the Catholics have a neat church called the "Prairie Church", which is under the pastoral care of Father Gaffney, who is also in charge in Center Grove Church.

Old Mr. Blessington, whose name is mentioned among the early settlers in Hampshire, used to relate of himself that he commenced the world for himself in Wisconsin, where he purchased 40 acres of land, and borrowed the money to pay for it at 40 per cent interest.  In three years, he had extinguished the debt.  He then sold out for $800, and came to this township and entered a half-section.

SOURCE:  Allen, L. P., History of Clinton County, Iowa, Containing A History of the County, it's Cities, Towns, Etc. and Biographical Sketches of Citizens, War Record of it's Volunteers in the late Rebellion, General and Local Statistics, Portraits of Early Settlers and Prominent Men, History of the Northwest, History of Iowa, Map of Clinton County, Constitution of the United States, Miscellaneous Matters, &c, &c., Illustrated.  Chicago IL; Western Historical Company, 1879



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