Crawford County, Iowa, IAGenWeb


John T. Carey

Some men are adapted by nature and inclination for public life and are happiest when carrying the gravest responsibilities. What to others would be a burden to them is a pleasure. Much of the important municipal and state business is carried forward by this class of men and to the number belongs John T. Carey, who is now serving as county supervisor of Crawford county and is one of its most esteemed citizens.

He was born in Cedar county, Iowa, June 18, 1863, a son of John and Margaret (Mead) Carey, natives of County Clare, Ireland. The parents were reared and married in Ireland, coming to America about 1848. The father engaged for a time in railroad work in New York but about 1855, deciding that conditions for advancement were more favorable in the west, he came to Cedar county, where he lived for twenty-six years; In 1881 he purchased a farm in Milford township, Crawford county, and took up his home there, continuing on this place until his death, which occurred in 1889, at the age of sixty-five years, his beloved wife passing away the following March, in the sixty-sixth year of her age. They were both consistent members of the Catholic church and made many friends by their upright lives and genial dispositions.

There were twelve children in their family, eight of whom grew to maturity: Mary, who is now deceased; Patrick, a resident of South Omaha, Nebraska; Michael, also deceased; Ella, the wife of Joseph Grose, of Wisner, Nebraska; Bridget, now Mrs. Michael Leahy, of Hartington, Nebraska; John T., the subject of this review; Margaret, the wife of Mark Keane, of Norfolk, Nebraska; and Anna, who died at the age of eighteen years.

John T. Carey was reared upon a farm in Cedar county and gained his preliminary education in the district schools, later taking advantage of a thorough business course at the Omaha Commercial College. After leaving school he took up his residence at Denison in 1881 and was appointed deputy county treasurer, an office which he filled for six years, evincing a capacity that gave brillant promise as to his future. After leaving this position he became county auditor, continuing for six years, and then was elected city treasurer of Denison. He engaged in the real-estate business for two years but again became actively identified with politics and served for six years as mayor of the city. In 19o1 he was a candidate for state senator but was defeated. He has filled the office of township clerk and in 1907 was elected county supervisor, to which position he has since been reelected and is the present incumbent.

On the 1st of July, 1890, Mr. Carey was united in marriage to Miss Marietta Greek, who was born November 13, 1856, and is now the oldest living lady whose birth occurred in Crawford county. Here she has spent her entire life and by her marriage has become the mother of three children, namely, John Gail, Lucina Margaret and William, deceased. Sylvanus B. Greek, the father of Mrs Carey, was born in Cattaraugus county, New York, December 25, 1826, and was a son of Nathan Greek, a Scotch sailor who was lost at sea. In early manhood Sylvanus B. Greek was married, in Whiteside county, Illinois, to Miss Lucina Goodrich, whose birth occurred in Cortland county, New York, September 25, 1836. In September, 1855, they came to Crawford county and settled in Milford township, being among the first residents of that locality. In their family were five children, namely, Cyrus, Seba, Marietta, William and Sylvan.

Mr. Carey gives his adherence to the democratic party and has for many years has been a stanch supporter of its principles. Religiously he is identified with the Catholic church and fraternally he is a valued member of the Knights of Pythias, the Improved Order of Red Men, the Modern Woodmen of America and the Woodmen of the World. His wife is a prominent member of the Woman's Relief Corps of the Grand Army of the Republic and in religious faith is a Methodist. They are both widely and favorably known and have a host of friends throughout Crawford county. Mr. Carey is a man of pleasing manners and genial disposition and to these traits may be largely attributed his success in public life. The important offices he has occupied attest his popularity and also give evidence that he has a large acquaintance and a host of friends. By efficiency as an officer and fidelity to the best interests of the people he has fairly merited the esteem in which he is held.

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