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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
James Gorham, of East Auburn, is a native of Illinois. He was born in Stephenson County, that State, in 1848, and is the youngest child of Lester and Cynthia (Strickland) Gorham. His parents were natives of Chenango County, N. Y., and in the Empire State were married. In 1843 they resolved to go West and emigrated to Illinois, locating in Belvidere, where they engaged in hotel keeping for some years. The death of Mr. Gorham occurred in 1860. Their children were Laura, who died some years ago; Charles, who died in Illinois; and James, of this sketch. After the death of her husband, Mrs. Gorham came to Fayette County, Iowa, in the autumn of 1860, and married Joseph Eastman, a farmer of Auburn Township. She died at her home in this county, in 1886, leaving one son, Joseph, who is married and resides in East Auburn.
Since his seventh year, James Gorham has been a resident of Fayette County. Here in the public schools he acquired his education and upon a farm in Auburn Township he was reared to manhood. When but a youth he responded to the country's call for troops, enlisting in Auburn, December 14, 1863, as a member of Company H, Sixth Iowa Cavalry. On going to Dubuque it was found that the regiment was full and the company was transferred to the First Iowa Cavalry as Company G., and attached to the Western army. Mr. Gorham participated in the battles of Little Rock, Ark.; Saline Cross Roads, Bayou De Meto and Pine Bluffs. He was also in Southern Arkansas and at length was honorably discharged at the close of the war in Austin, Tex., in December, 1865. The previous year he had been wounded in the left thigh and was confined in the regimental hospital for two weeks. He then made a trip to Fort Smith where he was taken with the fever and ague which confined him to the hospital for three months. Shortly afterward he returned to regular duty and with the exception of these times during his service he was always with his company and took part in all the engagements in which it participated.
When the war was over and peace restored Mr. Gorham returned to this county and resumed farming, which he followed successfully for a number of years. He is now living in Auburn. On the 2d of April, 1883, in Auburn Township, he led to the altar Miss Sarah E. Tope, daughter of J. J. Tope, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work. By their union have been born two children, a son and daughter - Alma and John Lester.
We find in Mr. Gorham a valued citizen of East Auburn who takes a commendable interest in everything pertaining to the advancement of the town ad the promotion of the general welfare. He is a member of two civic societies, Sutherland Post, G. A. R., and Waucoma Lodge, No. 303, I. O. O. F., both of Waucoma. In politics he is a stalwart supporter of Republican principles and as every true American citizen should do, feels an interest in political affairs.
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