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Fayette County, Iowa  

 History Directory

Past and Present of Fayette County Iowa, 1910

Author: G. Blessin


B. F. Bowen & Company, Indianapolis, Indiana


Vol. I, Biographical Sketches



~Page 1433~


Milo McGlathery


Few men of Fayette county were as widely and favorably known as the late Milo McGlathery, the honored pioneer and eminent jurist. He was one of the strong and influential citizens whose lives have become an essential part of the history of this section of the state and for years his name was synonymous for all that constituted honorable and upright manhood.


Tireless energy, keen perception and honesty of purpose, combined with a large fund of every-day common sense and deep learning in his profession, were among his chief characteristics, and the annals of Fayette county would be incomplete without a record of his career.


Milo McGlathery was born in Lawrence county, Pennsylvania, November 20, 1834, and was the son of John P. McGlathery, who was also a native of the old Keystone state and whose ancestors rendered valiant service to their country during the Revolutionary war. John P. McGlathery was a large contractor and among the important public works constructed by him was the Erie Canal. His last days were spent in Topeka, Kansas. His wife, who also was born in Pennsylvania, bore the maiden name of Amanda Kirkpatrick, and she also came from sterling Revolutionary stock.


Milo McGlathery was reared and educated in his native locality, and early in boyhood he became impressed with the idea of adopting the law as his life profession. To this end, he studied law in the office of Judge L.L. McGuffin, in New Castle, Pennsylvania, for two years, during which time he laid the foundation for future studies in the Ohio State and Union Law School, where he was graduated in 1856, being admitted to the bar in June of the same year.


In September, 1856, Mr. McGlathery came to Iowa and was one of the pioneers of West Union, Fayette county, and early formed a professional partnership with Hon. S. B. Zeigler, now deceased. In the fall of 1857 he was elected prosecuting attorney for Fayette county, and here began an uninterrupted political career which ended only with his death. In the autumn of 1858 Mr. McGlathery was elected prosecuting attorney for the tenth judicial district, which then embraced ten counties, and in 1862 he was re-elected for another term of four years. In 1866 Mr. McGlathery was nominated for district judge and was elected without opposition. Again in 1870, and on petition of the lawyers of the district, he was urged by the central committees of both parties to become a candidate for re-election, the voters of both parties being requested by their respective committees to support Judge McGlathery. Of course he was unanimously re-elected, and thus served out a period of eighteen years in the important offices of prosecuting attorney and district judge. The Judge was an ardent Republican, and one of the organizers of that party, but he was never a partisan in the administration of his official duties, hence his popularity among all classes. His qualifications for the office of judge were unquestionable. First of all, he had integrity of character. He possessed the natural ability and essential requirements, the acumen of the judicial temperament. He was able to divest himself of prejudice or favoritism and consider only the legal aspects of a question submitted. No labor was too great, however onerous; no application too exacting, however severe, if necessary to complete understanding and correct determination of a question. Many of his decisions bear the impress of his patient investigation and his logical deductions, and his career on the bench was a noble example and an inspiration.


On December 7, 1859, occurred the marriage of Milo McGlathery and Anna M. McMasters, the ceremony occurring at West Union, where their home was continued. Mrs. McGlathery was the daughter of James and Eliza (Lipton) McMasters, natives of Pennsylvania, but who came to Iowa in 1857, locating at West Union. In the East Mr. McMasters had been engaged in a number of business enterprises, having owned a coal mine, a hotel and farming property. On coming to Iowa he bought a farm, to which he devoted his attention during the remainder of his life. He was a man of sterling character and in his make-up were displayed the same qualities which had impelled his ancestors who were defenders of the colonies during the war of the Revolution. To Milo and Anna McGlathery were born two children, Edward S., born October 10, 1860, and a daughter, Addie.


Edward S. McGlathery is a prosperous father and breeder of thoroughbred trotting horses on his farm, adjoining the corporation of West Union on the south. He has made a specialty of this line of stock raising and gives his entire attention and the use of his fine farm of one hundred and sixty acres to the rearing and training of standard-bred trotting horses. He established in this business in 1890 and was one of the first men in Fayette county who decided that trotting horses could be profitably reared in Iowa as well as in Kentucky.


When the initial stock was secured neither time nor money was spared to secure the best that could be bought after thorough investigation. The original stock was from the well known farms of Senator Stanford, of California, and the Woodborn farms of Kentucky. The result has been in every way satisfactory. Mr. McGlathery was reared and educated in his native town of West Union, and, though he has traveled extensively, his home has always been here. Everyone knows “Ed” McGlathery and no one knows him but to respect and honor him for his quiet and unassuming manner and strict adherence to honest and upright dealings. The writer has known him since he was a school boy in knee breeches, wrestling with the intricate problems propounded by the late Prof. S.S. Ainsworth.  The family is nearly extinct through the death of both father and mother, but the survivors maintain the high standing attained and transmitted by their ancestors.


In 1899 Edward McGlathery was married to Anne E. Moore, a daughter of John Moore, a native of Dubuque, whose parents were pioneer settlers of that place.


~transcribed for Fayette IAGenWeb project by Claudia Meyer


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