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Ringgold County Biographical Sketches

Biographical and Historical Record of Ringgold and Decatur Counties, Iowa
Lewis Publishing Company, 1887. p. 382.


"Alpheus M. GUSTIN, an old settler of Ringgold County, and an active and enterprising farmer and stock-raiser of Jefferson Township, living on section 7, was born in Adams County, Ohio, February 25, 1844. His father, Jeremiah Gustin, brought his family to Iowa in 1855, when he located in Marion County, coming to Ringgold County in the spring of 1857.

The family settled on wild land and the first night camped on their new homestead, while the wolves howled all around them. Their house was the first frame dwelling in Ringgold County, the frame-work being hewed from the timber, and the siding, doors and flooring being hauled from Marion County, a distance of 100 miles. For two years they went to Marion County for provisions, and their nearest mill was in Missouri, fifty miles from their home. The father at one time was snow bound while going to mill, and was unable to return home for three weeks.

They tramped their grain out, and sometimes flailed it out, on a dirt floor. Such were some of their experiences of pioneer life, but their hardships and privations are over, and they now enjoy the fruits of their years of toil.

Alpheus M. Gustin, the subject of this sketch, was reared amid pioneer scenes, and his youth was spent assisting to clear and cultivate the home farm. He was married June 4, 1865, to Miss Catherine T. Harvey, and of the six children born to this union two are deceased - Emmitt and Oscar. The names of those yet living are - William, Charles, Blanch and Fred. Mr. Gustin has met with success in his agricultural pursuits, and has now a well-cultivated farm, where he resides, containing 340 acres of valuable land, which is farmed by himself with the assistance of his two sons, besides which they thresh and shell corn for the neighborhood. He has the latest improved machinery on his farm, and good farm buildings for the accommodation of his stock.

Mr. Gustin takes an interest in any enterprise for the advancement of the cause of education or religion. He has taught school himself, following that vocation during seven winters, and was president of the School Board for two terms. He has held the office of justice of the peace one term, was township trustee two terms, and has also served as road supervisor. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and is superintendent of Mortimer Sabbath-school."

Submitted to the Ringgold County IAGenWeb Project by Christy Jay, email:






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