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Fayette County, Iowa
Past and Present of Fayette County Iowa, 1910
Author: G. Blessin
B. F. Bowen & Company, Indianapolis, Indiana
Vol. I, Biographical Sketches
John C. Robbins
One of the most active thoroughgoing farmers and enterprising and highly respected citizens of Illyria township, Fayette county, is John C. Robbins, who was born November 24, 1853. He is the son of Francis K. and Christina (Peters) Robbins, the father born in Vermont June 26, 1819, died November 19, 1909; the mother was born in Pennsylvania, February 22, 1824, and died March 8, 1909. They were a fine old couple, highly honored by their neighbors. About 1850 they moved from Ohio to Jackson county, Iowa, where they remained a short time, then moved to Clayton county, this state, in 1853, having sold out their farm in the former place, which consisted partly of prairie land. Mr. Robbins was a very active and hard working man, and during his day cleared a great deal of land. He was a Republican and a member of the United Brethren church. Having followed farming all his life, in 1904 he retired and lived in Elgin, Iowa, though he remained active to his death. His family consisted of eleven children, named as follows: Clerinda, born April 21, 1843, married Rev. William Wenerich and she died about 1865; Jerome N., born December 24, 1845, is farming in Clayton county, Iowa; Mary Ann, born December 29, 1847, died in childhood; Maloa C., born July 23, 1851, married Gordon C. McCray and lives in Canada; John C., of this review; Arvilla, born February 4, 1856, married, first, Ed. Copeland and second, George Stamp; both being deceased, she makes her home at Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Susan C., who was born April 23, 1859, married John D. Shaffer, of Illyria township, this county (see his sketch); Ida M., born November 30, 1862, married Ed. Patterson and lives in Elkader, Iowa; Amy M., born September 24, 1865, married Joe Layton, and lives in West Union; James H., born March 10, 1868, is farming near Volga, Iowa; he married Nellie Lamphier; Elnora, who was born June 23, 1872, is the wife of Ed. Klingman and lives at Elgin, Iowa.
John C. Robbins, of this review, attended the home schools and remained under his parental roof-tree until 1880. On February 25th of that year he married Hattie Klingman, of Highland township, Clayton county, Iowa, and this union has resulted in the birth of five children, named as follows: Francis L., born January 17, 1882, was educated in the home schools, graduating from the schools at Fayette, Iowa, in 1909, also attended the State University at Madison, Wisconsin, which conferred upon him the degree of Master of Arts; he is now principal of the schools at Rosendale, Wisconsin; in August, 1900, he married Frances T. Medbury, of Illyria township, this county. Edna M. Robbins, who was born September 26, 1884, was educated in the home schools, graduated at Fayette, Iowa, in 1909 and is now teaching at St. Paul, Nebraska, in the normal school there, having previously taught in the public schools of her home community. Elizabeth C. Robbins, born on November 18, 1888, died in infancy. Emerald C., born March 17, 1899, was educated in the local schools, graduated from the high school at Fayette, Iowa, in 1909 and is living at home. Edward J., born April 14, 1895, was educated in the local schools and is living at home.
After their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. John C. Robbins located near Randalia, Iowa, on a farm; remaining there two years they sold out and went to Clayton county, Iowa, and lived in Highland township one year, then went to Custer county, Nebraska, and got a half section of land and remained there eight years, when they sold out and bought two hundred acres in sections 11 and 12, Illyria township, Fayette county, Iowa. Since coming here Mr. Robbins made all the improvements on the place and brought it to a high state of cultivation, until it now ranks with the best farms of the county. He has a very comfortable and substantial residence and such outbuildings as his needs require. Besides carrying on general farming he also devotes considerable attention to stock raising, especially short horn cattle, Duroc hogs, and some good grades of horses and sheep. Recently he has rented this farm and bought property in Fayette, where he now lives in order to give his children the benefit of attendance at the Upper Iowa University, and he expects to retire from active farming. The children, Edna and Francis, are graduates from the university, and Emerald and Edmond expect to take a full course there. Politically he is a Republican and a member of the Methodist Episcopal church; he is regarded as a very painstaking farmer, a good neighbor and a man who is interested in the general growth of his county.
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