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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 660~

Peter Wolfs


(Photos of Mr. and Mrs. J. J. Wolfs in source book)


"Prominently identified with farming and stock raising, two of the leading industries of Fayette county, is Peter Wolfs, who was born in Dover township, this county, on the Wolfs homestead, on February 22, 1864, and, while yet a comparatively young man, he has been very successful. He was reared on his father's farm and educated in the common schools of Dover township. He is of German descent, his father, M. J. Wolfs, having been born in Germany in the year 1821. He, like many other enterprising men of his country, saw opportunities in America and emigrated here, settling in Fayette county.


From his father, Mr. Wolfs inherited those Teutonic qualities which the German settlers have almost invariably possessed and which have made the so-called German element of such great value in the agricultural and industrial development of this country. In 1862 his father married Helena Helgerson, who was born in Norway in 1834, and from her also the subject of this sketch inherited that fitting sense of thrift and wise management which are necessary for the accumulation of a fortune. To this couple ten children were born, six boys and four girls, and all are still living: Joseph, who has made his home in Portland, Oregon, for the past twenty years and is captain of one of the large steamboats which ply on the Columbia river; Peter, the subject of this review; Bertha, who has married and lives in Winneshiek county, with a family of three children; Anna, who is also married, living now in Dover township, and who is the mother of seven children; Emilia is married and has three children; Michael, who is engaged in farming in Winnebago county and is married, having three children; Lewis H., who is married, and to whom three children have been born, lives in Dover township; Henry J., who lives at home, is married; Johanna Elizabeth, who has remained at home, giving assistance to her mother, and John C., who is a farmer. M. J. Wolfs, the father, came to America in 1851, and first went into Missouri.


He worked on the construction of the first railroad west of the Mississippi River and in 1853 he decided to make his home in Dover township, Fayette county, where he purchased one hundred and eighty acres of land, on which he built a substantial dwelling house and other buildings, and put in important improvements. He lived on this farm until his death, on June 21, 1908. He was a member of the Catholic church. He was actively engaged in politics, having been assessor for thirteen years, also holding other local offices.

Peter Wolfs was educated at the home school and remained with his father until he was twenty-four years of age, when he married and bought a fine farm of eighty acres, to which he has since added eighty acres, making a splendid farm, on which he has placed all modern improvements, and which is under a high state of cultivation, with new and excellent buildings, thus taking ever precaution to see that his general farming and stock raising business is conducted along the most up-to-date lines and to show the best results.

Politically, Mr. Wolfs is a Republican and has been fairly active in local politics, and, in addition to holding the office of township clerk for ten years, has held a number of school offices.

In 1888 Mr. Wolfs was married to Carrie Esvik, of Winneshiek county, and the following children were born to them: Helena, now deceased; Anna Helena, Josa Paulina, and Peter Cornel, who has since passed away. Mrs. Wolfs died on August 30, 1894, and Mr. Wolfs remarried on April 2, 1899, entering into the marriage estate with Barbara OLSON, a native of Fayette county. One child was born to them, Selmer Merl Oliver. Mr. Wolfs and his family are members of the Lutheran church.


~Typed for the IAGenWeb Project by Linnie Hoover Howell




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