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Fayette County, Iowa  

 Biography Directory


Portrait & Biographical Album of Fayette County Iowa

Containing Full Page Portraits and Biographical Sketches of

Prominent and Representative Citizens of the County

Lake City Publishing Co., Chicago

March 1891


~Page 294~


Almon Rawson


Almon Rawson, proprietor of the Brush Creek Bank, has been an active business man of Fayette County for nearly thirty years. He was born in Madison, Lake County, Ohio, June 12, 1842, and his paternal ancestors were among the sturdy Englishmen who first came to America to make a home. The founder of the family in the new world, Edward Rawson, was born in Gillingham, Dorsetshire, England, April 16, 1615. Having married Miss Rachel Perne, he emigrated to this country in 1636 and settled in the town of Newbury, in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He was a man of superior ability and great force of character and as a result took a prominent part in the affairs of the colony. In 1647 and 1648, he represented Newbury in the General Council and was the recipient of a grant of five hundred acres of land from the Government, for services rendered the commonwealth. He was appointed Secretary of the Colony of Massachusetts Bay, and annually chosen thereto for thirty-five years until the government was turned over to Sir Edmund Andres. Acting in that capacity he signed the warrants issued and sent by Charles II of England to America for the arrest of regicides. He was the author of several books and in religious faith was a Presbyterian of the strictest sect. His death occurred August 27, 1693, as shown by the record in the family Bible, which though more than two hundred years old, is still in possession of his descendants. His posterity have greatly increased in numbers, as may be surmised from the fact that his son William was the father of twenty children. Able lawyers, skillful physicians, prominent legislators and renowned military men are numbered among the descendants of that sturdy English pioneer. Harvard College has graduated a goodly number of them and in the struggle for independence and the War of 1812, they fought for American liberty.


The grandfather of our subject, Grindell Rawson, emigrated from Oneida County, N. Y., to Lake County, Ohio, in 1816, settled in the woods and developed a farm on which he lived till his death in 1872. His son, Joseph T., the father of Almon Rawson, was born in Oneida County, in 1814, and was therefore but two years old when they emigrated to Ohio. In Lake County he was joined in wedlock with Mary D. Genung, a native of Yates County, N. Y., born in 1817. In 1861, they became residents of this county, locating in Taylorville, where Mr. Rawson passed away in 1874. His wife lives with her only son, the subject of this sketch. Politically, he was a Whig and Republican, but never sought the honors or emoluments of public office. Religiously he was of the Baptist faith, as is also his wife. Of their four children but two survive: Almon and Mrs. Emma D. Rice of Chicago. The former is the eldest of the family. He was nineteen years of age at the time his parents came to this county, and with his father he worked on the farm until his death, at which time they owned four hundred and sixty acres of land.


On the 5th of June, 1871, Mr. Rawson led to the marriage altar Miss Maggie L. McEwen, a native of Canada, born July 18, 1846. Her parents emigrated from Scotland to that country where her mother died, but her father spent his last days in this county. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Rawson have been born five children: Joseph T., who died at the age of thirteen months; Ralph N., Emma J., Clark A. and Adrian L. Mr. Rawson and his wife are leading members in the Methodist Episcopal Church of Brush Creek, with which she has been connected since its organization. He takes a laudable interest in the improvement of educational institutions and for thirteen years he served as Treasurer of the School Board, a position which he still fills. In politics he is a Republican, having supported that party since 1864, when he cast his first vote for President Lincoln. He is also a charter member of the Knights of Pythias lodge of Brush Creek. The office of Mayer he acceptably filled and the county numbers him among its most valued citizens.


Having farmed until 1876, Mr. Rawson removed to Brush Creek and with his brother-in-law, G. E. Rice, started the Brush Creek Bank, which they carried on together for ten years, when he purchased his partner's interest is now sole proprietor. He also has a large horse ranch on which he keeps thoroughbred Clydesdales and other high grades of horses, having about sixty in all. He has made several importations. In former years, in company with Mr. Rice, he dealt extensively in cattle, one deal with Hiram Sweet amounting to $14,300, and another in Montana to $18,500. He was one of the organizers of the bank at West Union and was a member of its first board of directors, and in the Brush Creek Creamery Company with which he is connected he holds the position of treasurer. It will thus be seen that while Mr. Rawson has extensive business interests of his own, he is liberal in assisting in any worthy cause, both with time and means. He is accounted one of the affluent men of this part of the county and with the exception of about $1,000 which he inherited, his possessions are the just reward for his energy and business tact.




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