Decatur County Historical Society Newsletter

Volume No. 2, Issue No. 1, January/February 2007
 Decatur County Museum

The Museum may be viewed by appointment during the winter months. Please note that there is no heat. The Museum is located in the 100 block of North Main in Leon, Iowa. For viewing appointments, please contact Bob Bixby at (641) 446-3297.

Museum News

Recent donations to the Museum are:

A porcelain bed pan, a Royal Model 10 typewriter, and horseshoes from Tom Thomas, Jr. of Garden Grove.
Assorted silverware, old pictures, documents, lock box, kitchen tools, and an 1859 Bible, all from the Adra Marie Warnock Schenker estate. Adra lived in Lineville and the eastern part of Decatur County. The Bible contains the following surnames: Lowerance/Lourance, Blair, Warnock, Carmine, and Wood and notes by Josiah Lourance 1889.
A doll, a graduation dress, and a scrapbook of clippings of school pictures and names from the Leon Journal Reporter from Margaret Bunch Andrew, donated by Jeanne Dale.

LeRoy Tidbits

An excerpt the "History of Decatur County" written in 1915 by Prof. J.M. Howell and Herman C. Smith:
“Another of Decatur's prosperous towns is LeRoy. It is located on section 11, Garden Grove Township, and is but 4 and one half miles from Garden Grove. The town lies in the center of a good agricultural district.

James Buchanan of Garden Grove in the man in the white shirt in front of the front wheel.
"Leroy was laid out in 1880 upon the building of the Humeston & Shenandoah Railroad, now the Burlington, as were several other towns in the county. Major J. L. Young, L. P. Sigler and E. S. established the town on land owned by Buffum. Some time later they disposed of their interests, or a part of them, to ex Governor Drake and his business associates. Mr. Buffum still owns considerable of the town site.

"The first business house erected in Leroy was built by Flannigan & Perrin, who conducted a general store therein. Other business houses followed, residences were built and the little town began to show sturdiness and progress. The town has made much gain during the past few years and is one of the best trading points in the county. As a shipping point it is also excellent. The country surrounding this town is well adapted for stock of all kinds.

"A modern schoolhouse was erected in the summer of 1904.

Page 2, Leroy Tidbits Cont’d

"The Leroy Exchange bank was founded in1896 by F. E. and C. S. Stearns of Garden Grove with B. D. Barger as cashier and Mrs. Barger as assistant cashier. C. S. Stearns acted as president and F. E. as vice president. On the first of March, 1903, J. W. Stearns of Garden Grove succeeded Barger as cashier. E. H. Blair is present at this time; H. E. Stevens, vice president; D. C. Thurlow, cashier; and Edna Thurlow, assistant cashier. The capital stock is $5,000 and the deposits amount to $50,000.

"In 2007, the town has the schoolhouse built in 1904 which is used as a private residence, the Presbyterian Church and several homes. The area is attractive and kept up.”

These cards were made in Germany. The post mark looks like 1910 to Master Granvil Ryan in Lamoni from cousin Leone also in Lamoni.
Page 3, Donations

Donations to the Decatur County Historical Society and Museum may be sent to:

Great Western Bank
c/o Chet Redman
111 N Main
Leon, Iowa 50144
Checks may be made out to: The Decatur County Museum.
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