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Fayette County, Iowa
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
George A. Simpson
George A. Simpson, a retired farmer living in Maynard, came to this State from Rockford, Winnebago County, Ill., in 1861. He was born in Forfarshire, Scotland, September 23, 1830, and is a son of David and and Jane (Archer) Simpson, who were also natives of the same country, the father born March 1, 1799, and the mother in 1809. David Simpson was a farmer by occupation and crossing the Atlantic to America entered land near Rockford, Ill., where he opened up a farm and carried on agricultural pursuits until his death in 1870. His wife still survives him and resides in Winnebago County, Ill. They were parents of six children who are yet living - G. A. of this sketch; Margaret, widow of George Dimler of Harlan Township; Jane, wife of John McLeish of Winnebago County, Ill.; Rebecca, wife of Ezra Carpenter, of Harlan Township; Martha, wife of Alex Elsperman, of Harlan Township; and Elizabeth, wife of William Hawley, of Winnebago County, Ill. The last two are twins.
The first eleven years of the life of our subject spent in his native land and in 1841 set sail from Dundee, Scotland for America. The vessel dropped anchor in the harbor of New York after a voyage of eighteen weeks and three days, and the family at once proceeded by water to Chicago, whence they made their way by team to Rockford, Ill. Mr. Simpson was reared to manhood in Winnebago County, and received such educational advantages as were afforded by the district schools of those days. Upon a slab seat in a little frame school-house he conned his lessons and became familiar with the common English branches. At the age of twenty-one he began life for himself. He broke one hundred acres of land with an ox-team in Illinois, where for some time he farmed. As a helpmate on life's journey he chose Miss Jane Scrymger, the wedding taking place in Fremont, Ohio, in 1858. The lady was born in Dundee, Scotland, as were her parents, who with their family crossed the Atlantic to America and spent their last days in Ohio. The death of Mrs. Simpson occurred in Harlan Township, September 27, 1879. She was the mother of eight children - Mary Ann, who was born March 6, 1859, is the wife of Hugh Taylor of South Dakota, and the mother of two daughters; Elizabeth Jane, born April 16, 1860, is the wife of Harvey Seeley, of Antelope County, Neb., by whom she has three children; Josephine, born March 24, 1869, is the wife of William Davis, of Lakeview, Wash., by whom she has two children; Alexander, born February 14, 1863, operates the home farm; Florence N., born April 20, 1865, is at home; John J., who was born May 4, 1877, completes the family. He is preparing himself for teaching and is an apt scholar.
Mr. Simpson was again married on the 20th of January, 1881, in Rockford, Ill., to Elizabeth Clubb, a native of Banffshire, Scotland, and a daughter of David and Margaret (Scott) Clubb. Her father was a shoemaker by trade and carried on a big shoe store in his native land, where he spent his entire life. He died at the age of seventy-three years, and his wife died in Scotland in 1871 at the age of sixty-three years. Mrs. Simpson came to this country alone in 1872, crossing from Scotland to Canada, whence she made her way to Rockford, Ill. She is one of the four surviving children of the Clubb family. Margaret is the wife of Alex Yeats, who since 1850, has resided in Rockford, Ill.; Alex married Margaret White and is living in Aberdeen, Scotland, where Sarah, wife of Alex Jarvie, yet makes her home.
Mr. Simpson came with his family to this county in 1861, locating on a farm in Clermont Township, which he sold after three years. On removing to Harlan, he bought an improved farm of one hundred and sixty acres on section 13, which he still owns. He is now living a retired life however, having in former years acquired a competence sufficient to enable him to spend the remainder of his life in rest from all labor. He also has twenty-one acres in Maynard and one and a half acres with his home property. He votes with the Democratic party and has served on the School Board, taking an active interest in the cause of education. Socially he is a member of the A. O. U. W. He and his wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church of Maynard and have many friends throughout the county who highly esteem them for their sterling worth. Mr. Simpson is a self-made man in the truest sense of the word and the short sketch of his life here given but feebly portrays the enterprise, industry and perseverance which have characterized his life and made him one of the substantial farmers of Fayette County.
~transcribed and contributed to Fayette Co. by Carol Williams
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