Crawford County, Iowa, IAGenWeb


Dr. Ralph Otis McConnaughey, D. D. S.

For seven years Dr. Ralph Otis McConnaughey has practiced dentistry at Denison and has attained a measure of success which indicates that he has a thorough knowledge of his profession. He is a gentleman of pleasing address who keeps fully up-to-date in his calling and numbers among his patrons many of the leading families of this part of the state.

He was born in Washington county, Iowa, July 23, 1878, his parents being John T. and Lucetta (Mills) McConnaughey, the former a native of Pennsylvania and the latter of the Western Reserve of Ohio. The father, who was reared as a farmer at Bedford, Pennsylvania, came to Iowa about 1850 and settled in Washington county. He passed away in 1900, at the age of fiftyeight years. His wife is now living at Benzonia, Michigan, and is a member of the Congregational church, as was also her husband.

He was a soldier in the Civil war, enlisting at nineteen on the 28th of July, 1861, in Company E, Seventh Iowa Volunteer Infantry. He was transferred August 2, 1861, to Company H of the same regiment and was appointed musician June 12, 1861. On January 1, 1864, he reenlisted as a veteran and was promoted to the position of principal musician of the regiment September 10 following. He was wounded in the right leg March 21, 1865, at the battle of Bentonville, North Carolina, and was mustered out of service August 7, 1865, at New York city. He was a gallant soldier and as a private citizen was greatly respected by all who knew him.

David P. McConnaughey, the paternal grandfather of our subject, was a native of Pennsylvania and was of Scotch-Irish descent. He learned the hatter's trade and became a manufacturer of hats, but in 1850 was attracted to the west and located in Washington county, Iowa, where he purchased land from the government. He died at the age of ninety-four years. The maiden name of his wife was Catharine Thompson and she was the mother of eight children, one of whom died in infancy. The others were Samuel, David, Jr., Alexander, William, John, Emily and Elizabeth.

The maternal grandfather, Manning Mills, was a native of Ohio. He also settled in Washington county, Iowa, and lived upon his farm to an advanced age. He had seven children: Harlow, Ernst, Jay, Lucetta, Isabel, Myra and Effie.

There were five children in the family of John T. and Lucetta McConnaughey, namely: Ralph Otis, of this review; Harlow Alexander, now a resident of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania; Grace Elizabeth, a missionary in China; John, who died at the age of eleven years; and William, who died in infancy.

Ralph O. McConnaughey was reared on the farm of his father in Washington county and gained his early education in the district schools, later attending the high schools at West Chester and Grinnell, Iowa. After working for several years at Dixon, Illinois, he decided to devote his attention to dentistry and entered the dental college of the State University at Iowa City, graduating with the degree of D. D. S. in 1904. He has since successfully engaged in practice at Denison.

On the 2d of October, 1907, Dr. McConnaughey was united in marriage at Denison to Miss Allie Sewell, a daughter of Luman and Ella (Wieting) Sewell, and by this union one child, John Sewell, has been born.

The success of Dr. McConnaughey is due to his conscientious application and a natural adaptability to a profession which is both an art and a science and required a highly trained hand and an intelligent mind, both of which are happily possessed by the subject of this review. He is a prominent worker in fraternal orders, being a member of Sylvan Lodge, No. 507, A. F. & A. M.; Dowdall Lodge, No. 90, K. P.; and also of the Sons of Veterans. He and his wife are identified with the Presbyterian church. Politically he gives his support to the republican party, hut the honors and emoluments of public office have never appealed to him, as his interests are concentrated upon his profession.

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