Transcribed by Pamela Wagler from: Biographical Review of Des Moines County, Iowa: Containing Biographical and Genealogical Sketches of Many of the Prominent Citizens of To-day and Also of the Past, Hobart Publishing Company, Chicago, 1905.


A well-known citizen and resident of Augusta, Des Moines county, Iowa, is John H. Brandt, whose connection with the material prosperity of the village is important. A native of Germany, he was born near Hanover on Dec. 14, 1837, and came to America in 1859, landing at New York, where he remained for about nine months, and whence he came to Iowa in the spring of 1860. His father died when he was but seven years of age, but his mother came to America, and her death occurred fifteen years ago at Fort Madison, Iowa.

On his removal to Iowa in 1860, Mr. Brandt located at Fort Madison, making that his place of residence until 1875, during which time he was variously employed, first as a laborer and later as guard and teamster at the State penitentiary in that city. In January, 1864, however, he enlisted for the service of his adopted country in Company C, First Iowa Cavalry, with which he went to the front to take part in the Civil War. His term of service lasted over two years, and he was finally mustered out of the army in the spring of 1866, at Austin, Texas. He participated in a number of skirmishes, and was called upon for the performance of much arduous duty. For his loyalty he now receives a pension of twelve dollars monthly.

At the close of the war Mr. Brandt returned to Fort Madison, and in 1875 removed to a farm in that county, engaging in the practical work of farming for some years. He later changed his place of residence to Denmark, Lee county, and after engaging in farming there for a number of years, he purchased property in Augusta township, Des Moines county. He bought some town lots, and now owns three and one-half blocks in the village of Augusta, also a number of houses, which he rents. In 1862 he married Miss Rose Diedrick, who was born in Ohio, and came to this State when quite young. She is now deceased, her death having occurred March 7, 1902 at the age of sixty-two years, and her passing was a matter of heartfelt regret, for she was a woman of beautiful character, while her example and encouragement are missed in religious work, she having been a member of the Christian church. She was the mother of three daughters, as follows: Lydia, who is now deceased, and was the wife of John Blackman, of South Dakota; Alonzella, who is the wife of James Edwards, a teamster of Burlington, and has four children, John, Tennis, Nellie, and Margaret; and Flora, who is the wife of James Jackson, a railroad section foreman, of Burlington, and has had two children, Mona, who died at age of twelve years, and Clare.

In his political affiliation a member of the Republican party, Mr. Brandt has ever loyally supported that organization, but has not himself asked for the honors of office. His one fraternal connection is with the Grand Army of the Republic, and in his religious relations he is identified with the Lutheran church. He has ample cause to regard with complacency his present position in the world, for when he arrived in the country his entire worldly possessions consisted of five dollars in money. From this humble beginning he has risen by his own merit, and so well has he performed his part that he now finds himself surrounded by the comforts and many of the luxuries of life.


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