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Creston News-Advertiser
Creston, Union County, Iowa
Tuesday, October 10, 1978

X T PRENTIS DIES AT MT. AYR AT 82

American Flag.jpg Mount Ayr X T PRENTIS, 82, retired Mount Ayr businessman and a former state legislator for 22 years, died at the Ringgold county hospital Monday. He had been in ill health for some time.

One of Mr. PRENTIS' legs had been amputated in an operation during the past summer and he had suffered a stroke early this fall.

His funeral will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday at the First Baptist church in Mount Ayr. Rev. Paul KNESS will officiate. Burial will be in Rose Hill cemetery at Mount Ayr. His family will be at the Rhoades-Wilson funeral home at Mount Ayr from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Mr. PRENTIS had operated the PRENTIS Hatchery in Mount Ayr for many years before retiring several years ago. The business was operated for several years by his son, Richard PRENTIS, and now is operated by the husband of one of his granddaughters.

Mr. PRENTIS served in the Iowa House of Representatives from 1939 to 1947. He was Republican Floor Leader in the House in 1945. He served in the Iowa Senate from 1949 to 1963. He was chairman of the Iowa Tax Study Committee, chairman of the 1957 Senate Ways and Means Committee, chairman of the 1959 Senate Appropriations Committee, and served on the Legislative Research Council from 1959 to 1961.

He was appointed to the Iowa State Tax Commission in 1961 and served two years as its chairman.

Mrs. PRENTIS was a native of Benton. His given name was X. T. The letters were not initials. The letters were his grandfather's initials and were passed on to him, he had once explained. See note below

Mr. PRENTIS is survived by his wife, Gladys, two daughters, Mrs. Richard (Anne) WITTMANN of Stamford, Conn., and Mrs. Wesley (Jean) REGER of Horseheads, N.Y.; two sons, Richard PRENTIS of Mount Ayr and Raymond PRENTIS of Ottumwa; 11 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

X T Prentis was born in Ringgold county, Sept. 2, 1896. He was the son of Glasier E. and Louisa SAMS PRENTIS.

He operated the Hatchery in Mount Ayr and a feed business for 54 years.

In the House of Representatives he represented Ringgold county and in the Senate he represented a district that was made up of Ringgold, Union and Decatur counties.

Mount Ayr Record-News
Mount Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa
Tuesday, October 10, 1978

X T PRENTIS DIES AT MT. AYR AT 82

Mount Ayr, IA Services for X T PRENTIS, 82, a former Iowa legislator who died Monday at a Mount Ayr hospital, will be at 2 p.m. Thursday at the First Baptist Church here.

Mr. PRENTIS served in the Iowa House of Representatives from 1939 to 1947, acting as Republican floor leader in 1945. He served in the Iowa Senate from 1949 to 1964. He was chairman of the Iowa Tax Study Committee, chairman of the 1957 Ways and Means Committee, chairman of the 1959 Appropriations Committee, and served on the Legislative Research Committee from 1959 to 1961. He was appointed to the Iowa State Tax Commission in 1951 and served two years as its chairman.

A native of Benton, Mr. PRENTIS' given name was X T. The letters were not initials. He once explained that X and T were his grandfather's inititals and they were passed on to him. "That is my full name," he once said. "I had a dickens of a time with it when I was in the Army." See note below

Survivors include his wife, Gladys; two sons, two daughters, 11 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

NOTE: X. T. honestly believed for many, many years that XT was his full, given name, that they were not initials, and it did present quite a problem explaining this to everyone, especially the U.S. Army. His belief was later disproved by a reporter who located Granddad's birth certificate while he was serving in the Iowa Legislature. Whomever contributed this part of the story to the newspapers for Granddad's obituaries forgot or was unaware that Granddad was completely flabbergasted to learn he actually did have a "complete" given name; however, by that time, he had always signed his name only as XT and continued to do so. During his lifetime, he was only called XT and sometimes just X.

Contribution and photograph by Julie Watts, August of 2009

Photograph digitally colorized by Julie Watts

  • X. T. Prentis biography

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