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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 321~


Ulysses Grant Gruver

Ulysses Grant Gruver, the popular telegraph operator and station agent of Maynard, has the honor of being a native-born citizen of this county. He first opened his eyes to the light of day in West Union Township, July 31, 1863, under the roof of John A. and Elizabeth (Dorland) Gruver, his worthy parents. His father was born in Chambersburg, Pa., January 4, 1826, and his mother, who was born April 12, 1828, is a native of Ashland County, Ohio. They came to Iowa in 1852, locating in West Union, where the father carried on carpentering and building for several years with good success. Later he removed to a farm in West Union Township, and in 1872 became a resident of Elgin, Iowa, where he engaged in merchandising.


Seven years ago the father of our subject took possession of the Commercial House, Lutra, which he conducted for about five years, when he sold out and once more made a home in West Union, where he and his wife are now living. The following children were born unto them, five of whom survive: W. J., who is now employed as foreman of a section on the Burlington, Cedar Rapids & Northern Railway and resides in Elgin, Iowa, wedded Mary Hunsberger, of Pleasant Valley Township, by whom he had six children, five yet living; Albert died at the age of nineteen years; Martha, wife of C. F. Bakeman, died in Independence, Iowa, at the age of thirty-two years, leaving three children; Allen J., a section foreman on the Burlington, Cedar Rapids & Northern Railroad, makes his home in West Union; Charles H., is also a section foreman, resides in Decorah, Iowa, and has been twice married. His first wife was Emma Hammond, by whom he had two children, one yet living. They were divorced and he married Emma Baker. Ulysses G. is the next younger Benton C., who married Ammie Burke, of Solon, Iowa, is a telegraph operator on the Burlington, Cedar Rapids & Northern Railroad at West Union, Iowa, where they reside, they have one child.


We now take up the history of our subject, who in the public schools of Elgin and West Union received his scholastic training. In early life he became possessed of an ardent desire to study telegraphy and while yet a boy he owned and operated a short line. He showed much proficiency in acquiring a knowledge of the art and under the direction of E. H. Pattee, of Elgin, Iowa, he fitted himself for carrying on an office. After working as assistant in the Elgin office for one year he was placed in charge and held that position until 1887, when he was transferred to Maynard, where he now holds the position of station agent and operator. He is a popular employee of the company, having won favor with the people of this community and secured the confidence of his superior officers.


Mrs. Gruver was formerly Miss Jennie McMillan, daughter of John and Elizabeth McMillan, of Elgin, Iowa. She was born June 26, 1863, in Illyria Township, her parents being pioneers of the county. They still reside in Elgin, and their family comprised the following children: Nannie M., who became the wife of N. S. Smith, of Illyria Township, who died ten years ago, had three children by her marriage and resides at home with her parents; Dilla is engaged in the public schools of Elgin; May is the wife of Murray Nicholson, their home being on a farm near Ossian, Iowa; Belle is the wife of Harry Baldwin, a member of the firm of Dimond & Baldwin, owners and operators of the flouring mill of Elgin; Jennie is the next younger, and Henry, her twin brother, who married Minnie Elwell, of West Union, resides on a farm near Elgin.


Mr. Gruver takes considerable interest in civic societies and is a member of Round Grove Lodge No. 41, I. O. O. F.; West Union Encampment No. 57, I. O. O. F.; and Canton Colfax No. 19, I. O. O. F., all of West Union. He became a member of the subordinate branch of the Odd Fellows fraternity when a resident of Elgin and passed all the chairs of this lodge at that place. He belongs to the O. R. T. He is regarded as one of the leading young citizens of Maynard, and he and his wife hold a high position in the social world, having a large circle of friends and acquaintances.





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