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 Webster-Hamilton-Dubuque County IA Archives Biographies.....Aldrich, Charles 
1828 - 1882
Copyright.  All rights reserved.

File contributed for use in USGenWeb Archives by:
Joy Fisher sdgenweb@yahoo.com December 14, 2007, 8:25 pm

Author: Cyrus C. Carpenter (1896)

CHARLES ALDRICH (by ex-Governor Cyrus C. Carpenter).-Early in June, 1857, the
writer first met Charles Aldrich, who had recently established the Hamilton
Freeman at Webster City, Hamilton County. The dominating influences in Fort
Dodge at that time were entirely with the Democratic party, and the prospects of
having a Republican newspaper in northwestern Iowa enlisted the interest of
every Republican in the editor and his enterprise. A few days afterward; on
calling at his office, the new editor was found, with his assistant, a small
boy, with hand press, type-cases and fixtures all crowded into an office of a
single story, and a single room, not more than sixteen feet square. We talked of
the possibilities of northwestern Iowa, of its opportunities for useful activity
in all departments of industry, and of the future of the Republican party and of
its principles and purposes.

   This was the beginning of a friendship which for thirty-eight years, in
prosperity and adversity, in peace and in war, has continued unbroken. It will
never be forgotten that before this interview was terminated the busy editor had
given his views on a half dozen local issues which he had already determined to
agitate through the columns of the Freeman. Returning home on horseback, the
long ride across the prairie, from Webster City to Fort Dodge, afforded
opportunity to mentally analyze the young editor and his enthusiastic and
hopeful ambitions; and now, after all these years, it is a pleasure to record a
final estimate of his character.

   He was born in the town of Ellington, Chautauqua county, New York, October 2,
1828, the son of Stephen and Elizabeth (Nichols) Aldrich. The ancestors of
Stephen Aldrich lived many years at Smithfield, Rhode Island. He was a
blacksmith in early life, and later a merchant and lumberman. He came West in
1865 and located at Webster City, Iowa, spending his later years on a farm. He
died near Webster City, in 1882, at the age of seventy-six, and his wife died in
1880, at Olean, New York, also at seventy-six years of age. Both were connected
with the Methodist Church. He was a County Supervisor and Justice of the Peace
in the State of New York, and was always recognized as a good-hearted, impulsive
and energetic man.

    His father, the grandfather of Charles, was also named Stephen. He lived
near Middlesex, Yates county, New York, was a farmer, and died there at the age
of sixty-one. His wife was a woman of marked ability, a great reader and a
natural orator, possessing a wronderful gift of language, and a devout
Methodist. Her maiden name was Lucy Williams. They had a large family. The
maternal grandfather of Mr. Aldrich was Stephen Nichols, who had been a sailor
in early life and in following the sea had visited every port of any importance
on the planet. He settled in later life in Broadalbin, where he died at an
advanced age.

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