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Appanoose County >> 1913 Index

Past and present of Appanoose County, Iowa: ... 
L. L. Taylor, editor.  Chicago : S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1913. 

Taylor Township

Biographies submitted by Alice Wayne Daniels.

Page 383
Taylor township was established November 5, 1849, and the election was held at the home of Edward Callen in April, 1850. Reuben Denny, Preston Underwood and Edward Callen were the judges.

The township lies in the northern tier, being on the Monroe county line. On the east of it is Union , south, Douglas, and west, Chariton township. The land is generally fertile and is watered by North and South Soap creeks and branches of Buck creek. Naturally, the streams harbor considerable timber and if there are any coal deposits, it has not been mined to any appreciable extent. Some of the finest farms and country homes in the county are to be found here, and the barns and silos are conspicuous by their size and attractive appearance.

Lewis Hiatt and his wife, Rachel, both of North Carolina, settled in this township in 1845, having at the time, one child, O. A. Hiatt. The elder Hiatt passed away in 1887, but his widow before her death had lived on the farm he had improved, about sixty years.

William Coulson, a native of Tennessee, with his wife, Margaret, arrived in Appanoose county in 1849, and settled on a farm in Taylor township. Mr. Coulson eventually became the owner of several hundred acres of land and was one of the heaviest tax-payers in the county.

Aaron Taylor was another pioneer of the township, coming here in 1849 from Van Buren county, where he had lived since 1840. He located on section 17, where he lived a contented, prosperous life many years.

James M. LaCroix and bride settled in this township in 1846. Joseph Stauber, Theophilus Vierle and Ephraim Conrad emigrated with their families from North Carolina in 1849, and stayed in Jefferson county that winter. In the spring of 1850 they came to this township, where Mr. Stauber bought a claim of a Mormon, which later became the site of the village of Moravia.

James Madison Creech, of Tennessee, settled on a farm in Taylor township, on the 24th of April, 1857, and lived thereon for over fifty years. He married Eliza Clancy, a daughter of John Wesley Clancy, who was one of the first settlers of the county, having arrived here in 1843.

Aaron Luse was one of the pioneer settlers of Taylor township, coming here in 1851. He secured a tract of government land where he raised a family of eight children, among them being William J. and Jackson.

Levin Dean came to Appanoose county in 1846 from Missouri but was a native of Kentucky. With him were his wife and son George W., then a lad of seven years.

Daniel Pence and Jane, his wife, arrived in Appanoose county in 1855, settling on a farm of one hundred and sixty acres in Taylor township. On the land was a rude log cabin and about twenty-five acres of ground had been broken for cultivation. Here he raised a family of children and the Pences prospered.

Page 384
Joseph Stauber, one of the founders of Moravia, was a native of Pennsylvania and came to Appanoose county with his young wife in the spring of 1850, locating in this township, where he became one of the influential men of the community.

Daniel Cummins settled in this township in 1851. He was preceded by his son in 1849. The latter married Maria Theresa Stauber in 1853. She was a daughter of Joseph Stauber, who founded the town of Moravia.

S. M. Andrews was born in Tennessee and married Nancy L. Woods, whose father died in this county in 1863. Mr. Andrews removed to this county with his family in 1851 and located on section 21, Taylor township. He invested all his money in land, erected a log cabin, without windows or door casings, through force of necessity, and as the years went by improved seven hundred acres of land, which became a heritage to his children. This hardy pioneer was an important personage of the community and represented the township on the board of supervisors.

Ezekiel Wallace with his wife, Nancy , settled on section 16, Taylor township, in 1854, and added to his possessions from time to time. He became one of the prominent men of the township.

J. S. Hutton settled on section 18 in 1858.

From 1851 to 1864, Dr. R. Cummins practiced medicine at Moravia, kept a general store there and also at Iconium. After several years’ absence in California, he returned to Moravia in 1878, and resumed his practice there.

Reed W. Dodd, a West Virginian, settled in the county in 1850. he was an energetic farmer and became one of the substantial citizens of Taylor township.

E. Cummins came to Moravia with his parents in 1849 and they were among the earliest settlers of this locality. Mr. Cummins was one of the first merchants of the village, opening a general store in 1856. When the Civil war broke out he formed a company of volunteers and went with them to the front as captain of Company F, Eighth Iowa Volunteer Infantry. At the close of the war he resumed business in Moravia. He became a prosperous merchant and was postmaster of the village a number of years.

William M. Biddle, who married Eunice Patterson, a native of Pennsylvania, in 1853, emigrated from the Keystone state the year of his marriage and, taking a westward course, entered the state of Iowa. He located on section 5, this township, became prosperous and served the county as a member of the board of supervisors. He also held important township offices.

M. M. Callen, a Tennesseean, settled here in 1849 and became a scientific breeder of and dealer in Italian queen bees.

Samuel Cate, Jr., of southern birth, settled here in 1849 and in 1852 married Lincinda Wicker, daughter of James Wicker, an early settler of this county. The young couple removed to Missouri in 1854, but returned in 1864 and took up their residence on section 22.

William L. Chambers came to this county with his father, John C. Chambers, in 1850 and in 1857 married Adeline C., daughter of Henry C. Callen, who settled in this township in 1846. In 1861, Mr. Chambers purchased a farm on section 20.

Priscilla R. Hayes, widow of Alexander Hayes, came to Appanoose county from Tennessee with her six children in the spring of 1853, and settled on a farm in Taylor township. Samuel A. Hayes, who became a merchant at Moravia, and Amos A., on the home farm, were her sons.

Page 385
George W. Taylor, a Tennesseean, located on a farm four miles south of Moravia in 1850, with his bride, who was Anna J. Hiatt, of North Carolina. In the winter of 1850 he taught school at Unionville. He taught a number of terms there. He was county surveyor and assessor of Taylor township.

Willard D. Turner early settled in this township. He was born in North Carolina and in 1850 married Jemima E. Parsons. In 1855 Mr. Turner located on section 28 and made a success of farming and the raising of stock. He had a family of eleven children.

Presley W. Sears removed from Zanesville, Ohio, to this community in 1856, and entered three hundred and twenty acres of land three miles west of Moravia. In 1870 he left the farm for a life of retirement in Moravia.


Moravia was laid out and platted June 27, 1851, by Joseph Stauber. Theophilis Vierle and Ephraim Conrad. The original site was situated on the northeast quarter of section 4, and the plat recorded July 15, 1851.

The town drew to its confines many families and was not slow in attaining a healthy and satisfactory growth. The first store was opened in 1851, by Solomon Long, and soon thereafter a postoffice was established, with Ed Reich in charge. The mail was carried from Unionville once a week, by Joshua Sumner.

Henry McCoy is given credit for having been the pioneer pedagogue of his neighborhood, as he taught a school in the winter of 1850-1, in a log cabin one mile southeast of the village, which was attended by children of Seward Sumner, E. Conrad, Daniel Cummins, J. Conrad and others.

The marriage of Captain E. Cummins to Miss Stauber was the first to occur in the township, and the death of Isabel Sumner, which took place at about the same time, was the first visitation of the grim reaper in the community.

A schoolhouse was erected in the village in 1853, by members of the Moravian church, and was destroyed by fire three years afterwards. In its place was built a commodious two-story structure in 1867, which stood in the public square until the present modern building superseded it.

In 1877, a flour mill, long needed, was built, and was first run by wind power, which some time later gave way to steam and more modern machinery.

The Moravian Society long held sway in the town built by its members. The church dates its origin from about the time of the settlement of Joseph Stauber and his companions. These men dedicated forty acres of land for church purposes in the fall of 1852. The church flourished for a number of years and then became dormant.


The Presbyterians organized a church December 17, 1853, the principal promoter of the movement being Rev. Mr. Lawrence, and the constituent members, T. W. Patrick; Jane Patrick; Jonathan Davenport; W. M. Biddle; Eunice B. Biddle; James Beatty; Robert Patterson; Nancy L. Andrews; Priscilla R. Hayes; Lementine A. Hayes; Rosetta A. Hayes; Charlotte Cook; Lucinda Davenport and Rebecca Cuppy. The early pastors besides Rev. Lawrence were: Revs. Wheeler Hawks; George S. Adams; Levi Hewitt and Smith McCall. In 1874 the building of a church was started, which cost $1,500. It was dedicated in 1877 by Rev. W. F. Baird, of Burlington. At that time there were sixty members but since then the church has long since discontinued its meetings.

Page 386

The Methodist Episcopal church was organized in 1853, the class being composed of William Elswick and wife, Mr. Shinn and wife and a few others. The early pastors were: William S. Manson, a pioneer of the county; Revs. Delay, Clark, Morrison, Thorne, Morton, Ashbaugh, McFadden, Carrier, K.P. Morrison and John Orr. The present pastor if Rev. P. M. Conant, who presides in a church built in 1896. The first church building was erected in 1867, at a cost of $1,500.


The United Brethren church at Moravia is the outgrowth of a society which was formerly a country charge, but on account of so many of the members having moved to the village a class was organized by Rev. Frederick E. Brook, in the old Presbyterian church, in 1895. This class was revised March 22, 1896, having thirty-nine members, and the same year the building of a neat brick church was commenced but it was not completed and dedicated until November, 1897. The society also owns a parsonage and the value of the church property is $7,200. The present membership of the church is 165, while the membership of the Sunday school numbers 110. There is an Aid Society, Missionary Society, Young People’s Christian Endeavor and a Junior Society.

The pastors who have served the church from its organization to the present time are as follows: Rev. Frederick E. Brook, 1895-98; William Bovey, 1898-1900; Arthur Kephart, part of the year 1901; S. S. Wyand, 1901-02; W. N. Roush, 1903-97; H. O. Ross, 1907-09; C. S. Hanson who came in 1909 and remained a year and a half; J. W. Bonnell, nine months; W. O. Smith, three months; D. Winfield Thompson, the present pastor, came in October, 1911.


This financial institution was established May 15, 1906, J. A. Bradley, of Centerville, having purchased the private bank of W. H. Trussell at that time. Mr. Trussell had conducted the bank about eight years, having purchased it of George Sturdivant, who first established the bank in 1896. The present officials of the bank are: President, A. J. Bradley; vice president, R. McDanel; cashier, Ned McCauley. The capital stock is $25,000; surplus and undivided profits, $12,000; deposits, $147,000. The bank building, a one-story structure, was built in 1900 by Trussell & Jay.


was established November 29, 1909, with a capital of $15,000. The officers are: J. J. Ullem, president; J. E. Callen, vice-president; J. B. Sneed, cashier; C. A. Turner, secretary. Trustees, J. J. Ullem, T. J. Turner, H. S. Turner, W. L. Hicks, B. E. Turner, C. F. Turner, J. A. Callen. Capital stock, $15,000; surplus and undivided profits, $3,000; deposits, $86,000.

Page 387

was chartered December 16, 1868, and organized June 2, 1869. The charter members were Pinckney Tarr, F. M. Sharp and J. B. Anderson, who were the chief officials in the order given.

The present officers are: W. M., C. M. McFatridge; S. W., J. W. Hicks; J. W., Austin Jay; Treas., C. D. Whitton; Sec., R. McDanel; S. D., George M. Reisch; J. D., Charles E. Stauber; S. S., F. S. Sharp; J. S., H. H. Pabst.

The membership of Antiquity Lodge is now 115. The lodge about 1898 built the upper story to a building owned by L. F. Pabst, which cost them about $1,800. The lodge is in good condition financially and free of debt.


This is an auxiliary lodge to the Masonic and was organized September 10, 1891. The charter members were: Mesdames Lydia McFatridge, E. J. Nowles, Cora Sharp, J. H. McCauley, H. M. Graham, Eliza Goodrich, M. E. Harn, J. W. Hall, Misses Mary Fuller, Lilly Sharp, Libby Sharp, Messrs. J. S. Graham, G. T. Harn, B. F. Hackett, F. M. Sharp, J. F. Lilley, F. S. Sharp, Willson Sharp, V. Fuller, John Nowles, A. M. Cox, Isaac Goodrich, W. E. Sharp, J. H. McCauley, J. F. Harn, J. W. Hall, Miss Gracie Wills. The present worthy matron is Mrs. J. W. Sutherland.


The Odd Fellows organized their local lodge October 23, 1890. The charter members were Henry C. Duvall, E. T. Maiken, Henry W. Hobert, J. J. Coulson, W. M. Hackett and A. D. Maiken.

There are at present 112 members. The lodge owns the second story of a building which was built at a cost of $3,500. The present officials are: Robert Tarr, N. G.; John Winsler, V. G.; Newton Wyckoff, Sec.; John Rice, Treas.

There was a lodge of Odd Fellows in Moravia long before the present one, but for some reason it surrendered its charter in 1875.


was organized October 20, 1898, by Robert Tuttle, Mrs. Rosa Tuttle, Mrs. Dollie Tuttle, Eli Lawrence, Mrs. Belle Irwin, John Rice, Mrs. Mary Rice, George Eastlake, Mrs. Katie Eastlake, George B. Johnson, Mrs. Jennie Johnson, Miss Gussie Johnson, Mrs. Rusha Kinser, T. J. Jones, Mrs. Livona Jones, H. W. Hobert, Mrs. N. J. Hobert.

The present officials are: N. G., Edith Turner; V. G., Mrs. Hester Miller; Sec., Mrs. Eva Matthews; Treas., Mrs. Ethel Rice. There are fifty-eight members.

Page 388
MORAVIA CAMP, NO. 4204, M. W. A.

This camp was organized September 9, 1896, with the following charter members: H. A. Berry, J. E. Sharp, F. Buckmaster, Frank Selby, W. A. Eastlake, Charles Main, J. H. Shriner, O. G. Mason, C. P. Galley, J. H. Gallagher, C. R. Hicks, O. H. Howard, C. R. Irvin, E. S. Jenkins, R. D. McCauley, A. M. Nicholas, A. M. Pennington, F. P. Sharp, F. C. Smith, W. S. Thomas, G. H. Tissue, Whit Thatcher, T. J. Veach, J. R. Wren.

First officials were: V. C., O. G. Mason; W. A., C. R. Irvin; banker, George Tissue; clerk, Will Hackett; escort, R. D. McCauley; board of managers, Charles Main, Frank Selby, J. R. McCune.

The present officers are: V. C., C. N. Main; W. A., F. Selby; banker, N. Y. Wyckoff; clerk, G. T. Harn; watchman, S. Kingery; sentry, L. Main.


Veterans of the Civil war organized the above post September 7, 1885. It meets once a month by order of the commander, W. D. Kinser. The charter members were: J. J. Cree, F. M. Sharp, Levi Broshar, W. D. Kinser, George Gladfelder, D. H. Wills, J. H. T. Harn, S. A. Hayes, W. H. Shutterly, Charles Deo, Jacob Cox, J. F. Lilley, R. K. Johnson, John W. Hall, William Jones, John W. Main, Eli Johnson, Lewis Main, Thomas H. Neal, Jacob Shriner, Lewis Hiatt, Jr., Amos Hayes, John Wood, E. Cummins, J. C. Smith.


was organized September 26, 1899. The charter members were Rev. E. T. Norton, Mrs. E. T. Norton, E. F. Mahin, L. T. Gorsuch, William A. Eastbrook, H. F. Neal, John Boysel, Mary Boysel, Frank Nicholson, Emeline Nicholson, M. E. Norton, W. G. Boysel, E. F. Oehler, Frank Selby, Calvin E. Enix, N. J. Wyckoff, J. M. McCrary, J. H. West, Mildred Neal, S. L. Hill, J. L. Huffman, Harry Bressler, C. H. Crimley, T. M. Harwood, Bertha Davis, Rufus Cummins, F. Reich, A. B. Harn.

By the year 1890 Moravia had grown to a town of 311 people, with its business houses clustered on two sides of a very pretty public square. In the decade following the population had more than doubled, or in other words, there were 632 inhabitants. This seemed to be almost the limit of growth in numbers, as the census of 1910 shows an increase of but fifty, making the total number of citizens 682. The appearance of the village has changed, however. A beautiful school building, new churches, bank buildings, store buildings, a brick hotel building and other improvements have added materially to the general effect.

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The postoffice at Moravia was established March 22, 1851, with Edward Reich as postmaster. His successors have been the following named: H. C. Sanford, October 23, 1863; Ephraim Cummins, July 20, 1865; Samuel G. Cox, September 1, 1885; William D. Kinser, May 14, 1889; James E. Sharp, April 11, 1893; Rufus E. Cummins, June 12, 1897; James W. Halden, February 1, 1911.