Crawford County, Iowa, IAGenWeb


George V. Jordan

George V. Jordan, one of the most prosperous and influential residents of Paradise township, is the owner of nine hundred and thirty acres of rich and arable land in Crawford county.

His birth occurred in Paris, Oxford county, Maine, on the 6th of August, 1846, his parents being Enoch C. and Mary Richardson (Cleaves) Jordan. The father, who was born in Saco, York county, Maine, on the 30th of September, 1808, was a son of Ichabod Jordan, whose birth occurred in Saco, Maine, on the 24th of September, 1770. The latter passed away in the same house in which he was born, being called to his final rest on the 20th of May, 1865. On the 5th of February, 1797, he had wedded Miss Mary Coffin, who was a daughter of James Coffin and died on the 10th of October, 1859.

Ichabod Jordan was a sea captain. When he was a young man of twenty-one years his ship, The Fame, was captured by the British ship, Favorite, which was commanded by Arthur Wood. In 1805 Ichabod Jordan commanded the American ship Ocean and made a trip to Stockholm, Sweden. His arrival there was celebrated by the city, and the king and queen came on board and dined. During the war of 1812 Captain Jordan was a prisoner on board the frigate Boxer at the time of her engagement with our American ship, Enterprise. He voted for George Washington and for every president down to Lincoln.

His father, Tristram Jordan, was born on the 13th of May, 1731, at Winter Harbor, now Biddeford, York county, Maine, and was married three times. In 1749, in Berwick, he wedded Hannah Goodwin, who was a daughter of Captain Ichabod Goodwin, was born on the zath of July, 1730, and passed away on the roth of July, 1775. For his second wife Tristram Jordan chose Miss Dorcas, whom he wedded at Falmouth in December, 1778, and who died on the 19th of December, 1781. His third wife, who bore the maiden name of Hannah Frost and whom he married in Berwick on the 21st of May, 1784, was called to her final rest on the 26th of September, 1789.

Tristram Jordan, who was eleven years old when his father died, followed merchandising at Saco, Maine. When a young man of twenty-three he was chosen selectman of the town, serving in that capacity from 1754 until 1762. He also acted as captain of the militia and was appointed colonel by the council of Massachusetts in 1776, while in 1787 he was elected senator by the county of York. He removed from the Falls at Saco to his estate two miles north on Ruxton Road, where his demise occurred on the rst of November, 1821.

Tristram Jordan was a son of Samuel Jordan, who was born in 1684, at Spurwink, now Cape Elizabeth, Cumberland county, Maine, and died on the 20th of December, 1742. In 1718, in York county, Maine, Samuel Jordan wedded Miss Olive Plaisted, whose birth occurred-on the 1st of May, 1698, and who was called to her final rest in 1763. Her parents were James and Mary (Rishworth) Plaisted, of Brunswick, Maine. Samuel Jordan, his mother and all the other children of the family were captured by the Indians and taken to Trois Riviers in Canada. where Mr. Jordan remained a prisoner for seven years, spending six years with the Indians and one year with the French. At one time, when asked whether he preferred the Indians or the French, he replied: "The Indians."

In 1717 we find his name recorded at Winter Harbor, Maine, where he was conducting a store, but on account of his knowledge of Indian affairs he was of greater value to the government as interpreter. After the treaty of 1717 he acted as Indian agent, government agent and interpreter. He was a man of great energy, a prominent factor in business affairs and a leader in the Congregational church.

Samuel Jordan was a son of Dominicus Jordan, who was born at Spurwink, Cumberland county, Maine, prior to 1664. In 1681 the latter wedded Miss Hannah Tristram, a daughter of Ralph Tristram, of Winter Harbor, now Biddeford. Maine. At the beginning of King Philip's war, in 1675, in company with the other members of his father's family, Dominicus Jordan left the settlement when it was attacked by the Indians and the homes destroyed. Six years later he returned, residing there until the second Indian war in 1690, when he was again forced to leave, this time remaining away until 1698. He was known as "the Indian killer." In 1703 a party of apparently friendly Indians called on him to buy some goods and, taking him off his guard, buried a hatchet in his brain, leading his wife and children as prisoners to Canada.

Dominicus Jordan was a son of the Rev. Robert Jordan, clergyman of the Church of England as early as 1639. He was established at Richmond's Island as successor to Mr. Gibson but the precise time of his coming is not known, nor the exact place of his nativity in England. It is supposed, however, that he crossed the Atlantic about 1639. At Richmond's Island the Rev. Robert Jordan wedded Miss Sarah Winter, the only child of John Winter. On account of his religious beliefs he spent the winter of 1654 and also that of 1663 in jail. His demise occurred at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in 1679, when he had attained the age of sixty-eight years.

Enoch C. Jordan, the father of George V. Jordan, spent his early life in Saco, Maine, and subsequently removed to Paris, Oxford county, that state. Later, however, he returned to his birthplace, there passing away in 1880. By trade he was a courier. Unto him and his wife were born eleven children, the record of whom is as follows: Mary Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam, both of whom are deceased; James H., who died in front of Morris Island, at the siege of Charleston, in 1863; Elizabeth R., who has passed away; Charles Albert, an architect of Chicago, Illinois; Enoch, a surveyor of Saco, Maine; George V., of this review; Isabelle, who is a resident of Boston, Massachusetts; Caleb, who follows farming in Defiance, Ohio; Mrs. Louisa Robinson, of Council Bluffs, Iowa; and Mary, who makes her home in Saco, Maine.

George V. Jordan, whose name introduces this review, acquired his education in the common schools and remained with his parents until ten years of age, while during the next six years he lived with his grandparents. He worked on a farm in Maine for two years and when a youth of nineteen came to Iowa, spending a short time in Modale, Harrison county. He then taught school in Crawford county for two years. On the expiration of that period he purchased land at Gallen's Grove, retaining the tract, however, for but a few months, when he exchanged it for the property on which he now resides in Paradise township, Crawford county. He first made a number of small improvements and subsequently erected a mammoth residence. In the conduct of his agricultural interests he has won a gratifying measure of success and his property holdings at the present time embrace nine hundred and thirty acres of valuable land in this county. He is also a director of the Arion State Bank at Arion, Iowa, of which he was one of the organizers and of which he has served as vice-president.

In 1868 Mr. Jordan was united in marriage to Miss Nettie Wetherby, a native of Allegany county, New York, and a daughter of William and Susan (Moore) Wetherby, who were born in New York and Vermont respectively. They took up their abode in Elgin, Illinois, where occurred the death of Mr. Wetherby. His widow came to Iowa in the fall of 1867 and passed away in 1896. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Jordan were born five children, namely: William, a horse dealer of Dow City, Iowa; Mary, twin sister of William, who is deceased; Lizzie, the wife of H. G. Scott, an agriculturist of Paradise township; Nettie, the wife of George Rule, who also follows farming in Paradise township; and George V., who has passed away.

Mr. Jordan is a republican in politics and held a number of minor offices in the early days. He was a charter member of the Baptist church at Dow City and has ever been deeply and helpfully interested in its work. The period of his residence in Crawford county covers more than four decades and he has long enjoyed an enviable reputation as one of its most respected and esteemed citizens.

Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.