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Delaware County, Iowa


 Biography Directory

William James Ryan


Delaware Township


      William James Ryan was for a number of years a farmer in Delaware township but for four years preceding his death was engaged in the lumber business in Fayette, Iowa. He was born in Delaware county, near Manchester, on a farm in Delaware township, October 8, 1864, a son of William and Phoebe (Smith) Ryan, natives of New York and Ireland respectively. They were married in Illinois and after living there for a time came in 1856 to this county, where they have since made their home. The father during his active years was a farmer and stock raiser. To their union were born five children, namely: Huldah, now Mrs. E. R. Leamon, of Manchester; Charles, who died at the age of two; Ernest; William James; and Harry L.
      William J. Ryan attended the country schools in the neighborhood of the home farm and also the common schools of Fayette. When he had attained his majority he started out for himself and became a farmer, having from boyhood been familiar with practical methods of agriculture, and as he was a tireless worker and also a man of sound judgment he prospered, his resources increasing from year to year. His farm of one hundred and twenty acres, which was situated on section 12, Delaware township, two and one half miles southwest of Oneida, was one of the well improved properties of his locality. In 1908, on account of failing health he left the farm and moved to Fayette, entering the lumber business, in which he was engaged for four years. On the 20th of February, 1913, his determined fight for life was ended and he passed to his reward. He was laid to rest in the cemetery at Manchester.
      Mr. Ryan was united in marriage on the 25th of February, 1890, to Miss Cora May Hatch, a daughter of Phineas and Eliza (Rowe) Hatch, natives of New York state and Illinois respectively. Her parents came to this county about forty four years ago and located on a farm in Delaware township, where they resided for many years. The father passed away in December, 1907, but the mother still resides upon the home farm, which is situated two miles west of Oneida. To their union were born three children: Cora May, Adrian John and Royal. Mr. and Mrs. Ryan became the parents of a son, Harry Julius, whose birth occurred November 15, 1891. After attending the rural schools he completed his education at Manchester and Fayette and is now in the implement business at Greeley, in which connection he is proving successful.
      Mr. Ryan of this review was a republican in his political belief and served as school director for a number of years besides taking a keen interest in all public affairs. His farm is still in possession of his family and is kept in excellent condition. He was a lover of all kinds of domestic animals and found great pleasure in raising graded stock for his own use. His many friends remember with mingled sorrow and gladness his life, grieving that he is gone but gratefully recalling the many years that they were privileged to know him intimately. He was a man of innate kindness of heart and in an unostentatious way went to the assistance of many who were in need of help. His word was never questioned and his name stood invariably for honor and strict integrity.


~ source: History of Delaware County, Iowa and its People, Illustrated, Volume II. The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1914, Chicago. Page 197-198. Call Number 977.7385 H2m; LDS microfilm #934937.

~transcribed and contributed by Constance Diamond for Delaware County IAGenWeb


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