The Past and Present of Hardin County Iowa
ed. by William J. Moir. Indianapolis: B. F. Bowen & Company, 1911
Transcribed by Linda Suarez
Concord, the extreme southwestern sub-division of Hardin county, by reason of its being owned by each other section by the Iowa Railroad and Land Company, and other causes, was the last in the county to be settled up, but it is now well populated and has some of the most fertile and highly cultivated farms within the entire county. It comprises township 86 north, of range 22. It had no natural timber, no considerable streams or springs of running water. Its 1905 population was fixed at nine hundred and sixty-five by the state census books.
The first to settle in this purely prairie township was Watson Dean, who entered land on section 30, in 1869, locating upon the same that fall. After one year he sold to William C. Paul and removed to Kansas. The second settler was Frank D. Cooledge, who, in about 1866, came from Stephenson county, Illinois, to Steamboat Rock. He bought land in Concord township in 1868, remained there during the summers until 1871, when he brought his family and made his permanent home there.
Prior to about 1882, the principal settlers were listed as follows: Richard Jones, William Hotchkiss, William Lee, Isaac Pierce, Robert McFarland, H. C. Cutler, A. S. DeWitt, Frank Cooledge, Cabin Sime, Peter Seglem, Hans Brandlind, Frank Clark, William Cooledge, David Hodson, E. Griffith, Henry Hilts, A. H. Link, James Ludwig, W. C. Rose, S. A. Summers, D. F. Summers, J. R. Hammond, A. C. Kinley, G. A. Hubbard, Michael Moyer, J. A. Lee, Eugene Coats, John Jonas, E. A. Slater, Cornelius Ingalls, Hiram Lee, L. Johnson, I. Christiansen, Barney Jacobson, H. P. Cutler, Jonathon Cox, George Patrick. Concord was organized into a civil township in the autumn of 1872, the first township meeting being held at the house of F. D. Cooledge. Six of the nine legal voters of the township were present at this election. These were elected to hold the first township offices: Trustees, H. P. Cutter, William C. Paul, R. B. Mulford; clerk, F. D. Cooledge; assessor, I. B. McFarland; justice of the peace, Matthew Biddick.
The first birth in this township was Harry W., son of W. C. and Hannah Paul, born October 17, 1872; died August 13, 1879.
The earliest marriage was that uniting, in November, 1873, David Giltner and Mary E. Biddick, who later settled in Hamilton county.
The first religious services were held in this township in the house of F. D. Cooledge, by Rev. S. Carhart, of the Primitive Methodist church, in 1872. A Free Methodist society wsa formed in 1876. The class was organized by Rev. Eli C. Mossman, of Pleasant township, it being the first class of this denomination formed in Hardin county.
The Society of Friends held services at the Center school house at an early day in the township's history.
The first cemetery to be laid out in Concord township was platted in 1881, on section 9, and contained one acre of land.
The first blacksmith in the township was in 1878, when Albert Thompson commenced to blow the fire and pound the anvil, on section 29, he continuing, however, only one year, when he packed up and emigrated to the Red River of the North. In 1880, Carl Bye opened a shop on section 20, where he had a large business in horse shoeing and plow work, for this has always been a stirring agricultural section and made up of the most energetic husbandmen.
A Sunday school was organized in the Paul neighborhood before 1872, across the line in Hamilton county, and continued more than twenty years.
Among the first school teachers were Jane Hunter, Anna Eliza Hunter and Alice Hunter, three sisters. Their brother, Doctor Hunter, was an early teacher in Grant township.
The only town within this township is Garden City, platted when the St. Paul & Des Moines railroad went through the township in 1901.
A postoffice was established here in 1903 and the following have been postmasters: J. E. Johnston, a short time, and succeeded by the present incombent, M. T. Nessa. It has been a money order office since 1908.
The churches represented here have been the United Evangelical and the Norwegian Lutheran church. The former has gone down on account of removals.
Since 1895 this township has had a successful creamery, situated about three miles north and west from Garden City.
The business of Garden City is largely in the hands of the Norwegian element and is as follows: General dealers, Tungland Brothers, I. W. Vallem; hardware, Nessa & Vallem; furniture, Hendrickson & Company; lumber, Oscar Sampson; grain and coal, Farmers' Elevator Company, Diamond Grain Company; blacksmithing, S. R. Bjelde; meat shop, S. Holland; restaurant, L. J. Thorson; banking, Farmers' Bank; barber, Ole T. Olson.
Garden City is situated less than five miles from the Radcliffe railroad crossing of the Short Line and the Northwestern railroads. The history of the place dates really from the spring of 1902.
The present (1911) township officers are: Justices of the peace, T. J. Sime and O. Sampson; constables, Ed Johnson and E. Tungland; clerk, Ole T. Tungland; trustees, J. A. Lee, E. Wireson, O. A. T. Larson; assessor, O. E. Feedan.