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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 488~


William Kent

William Kent, a prominent farmer and stock-raiser residing on section 32, Dover Township, was born in South Hero, Grand Isle County, Vt., December 14, 1827. His parents were Helmer and and Samantha Fletcher Kent. His father, a native of New Jersey, was born February 19, 1786, and first married Hannah Allen, who was born July 15, 1795, in Essex County, N. Y. They became the parents of two children: Jane Ann, who was born August 22, 1814, and is now Mrs. Adams, of Oshkosh, Wis.; and Helmer A., who was born June 8, 1816, and died in infancy.


Helmer Kent and Samantha Fletcher were joined in wedlock July 6, 1817. The lady was born in South Hero, Grand Isle County, Vt., September 1, 1794, and unto them were born the following children: Munson F., the eldest, who was born January 7, 1820, in South Hero, Vt., was twice married and had seven children. He came to Iowa in 1855, locating on a farm in Fayette County where he died in September, 1868. Harriet, born September 17, 1824, died March 25, 1828; William, of this sketch, is the next younger; Phoebe L., born March 24, 1830, on the 24th of April, 1853, became the wife of Winslow Stearnes, who is now deceased, and makes her home on a farm near Lima, Iowa. Unto them were born three children. Juliette, born September 7, 1832, married H. B. Hoyt, of West Union, Iowa, February 22, 1854, and died March 30, 1875, leaving four children. Margaret F., born December 14, 1835, became the wife of Jason L. Paine, of Fayette, July 24, 1861, and their home is on a farm in this county. Five children were born unto them, four of whom are living. Warren, born October 12, 1838, died May 18, 1847. The father of this family died in South Hero, Vt., July 18, 1858, and the mother spent her last days in Fayette, Iowa, where her death occurred May 22, 1861.


In his native town William Kent spent the days of his boyhood and youth, and on the 20th of September, 1854, married Miss Julia Ann Hoyt, daughter of Daniel and Prua (Keeler) Hoyt, and a native of Connecticut, born in Ridgefield, Fairfield County, August 28, 1832. About three and a half years of their married life Mr. and Mrs. Kent spent in the East, and in April, 1858, came to Iowa, locating upon the farm in Fayette County which has since been their home. He built a log house in which they lived comfortably and happily for many years, but some time since it was replaced by a commodious residence of more modern style. The fine farm comprising three hundred and eighty-five acres is furnished with good buildings and all the necessary improvements, and for the past fifteen years Mr. Kent has given considerable attention to the raising of fine stock, making a speciality of Short-horn cattle. He now has a herd of seventy head of thorough-bred Short-horns and at the county fairs has taken many premiums. His home with its entire surroundings is typical of that thrift and economy which follows the New Englander wherever he goes.


Six children have been born of the union of Mr. and Mrs. Kent and the family circle yet remains unbroken, though some of the children have left the parental roof for homes of their own: Gertrude E., who was born in South Hero, Vt., January 19, 1856, was married in West Union, October 18, 1882, to John J. Shaw, who is engaged in the hardware business in Emmetsburg, Iowa, where they reside. They have one son and one daughter; Addison H., born October 25, 1857, in South Hero, Vt., married Clara McCleery, of this county, September 22, 1881, and resides on a farm in Union Township; Carrie A., born May 22, 1859, in this county, became the wife of John W. Blunt in West Union, December 20, 1886, and their home is on a farm in Union Township; Hardy W., born March 8, 1862, married Grace E. Tyler, June 26, 1889, by whom he has one child, and is associated in business with his brother-in-law, J. J. Shaw, of Emmetsburg. Herbert A., born July 16, 1866, in Dover Township, is still at home; Cora A., born on the old home farm, October 8, 1868, attended the public schools of the neighborhood and completed her education in the High School of West Union. The other children were educated in the public schools and at the Upper Iowa University, of Fayette.


Mr. Kent is a public-spirited and enterprising citizen. He has always taken an interest in everything to enhance the welfare of his town and county, and has held the office of Treasurer in the school district for the past twelve years, while for more than twenty years he has been connected with the school board. He has also served his township as Assessor and Census Enumerator and in other offices of trust and responsibility. Mr. Kent has been a stanch Republican in politics ever since the Civil War, previous to which time he voted the Democratic ticket. A third of a century has passed since he came to Iowa, and during that entire time he has resided upon one farm.





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