Historical and Biographical Record of Black Hawk County,
George Deeming, one of the representative farmers of Mount Vernon Township, owns 120 acres on the northeast quarter of section 27. His improvements are among the best in the township. His farm is all well fenced; his residence and farm buildings are large and comfortable and in good repair. He is a public-spirited citizen, and has assisted materially in advancing the interests of his town and county. Mr. Deeming was born in Melton-Mowbray, Leicestershire, England, August 8, 1836, and was fourteen years old when his father came to the United States. He lived in Lockport, Illinois, till 1857, when he went to Nebraska and lived a few miles from Sioux City a few months. In 1858 he came to Black Hawk County, Iowa, and worked by the month till the breaking out of the war of the Rebellion, when, August 1861, he enlisted in the Third Iowa Battery. They went into camp at Dubuque, and from there were sent to Benton Barracks, St. Louis. Their first battle was at Sugar Creek, Arkansas. Subsequently they participated in the battles of Pea Ridge and Helena. At the battle of Pea Ridge the battery lost twenty-three horses and three guns, and eighteen men were wounded and three killed. He re-enlisted in 1864 and served till the close of the war; was mustered out October 24, 1869. He then returned to Black Hawk County, and located on the farm where he now lives, which he had bought while in the service. The land was wholly unimproved and it is due entirely to his industry and energy that he is now the owner of one of the best farms in Mount Vernon Township. Mr. Deeming married April 4, 1864, to Margaret E. Noll, a native of Jackson County, Ohio, born May 16, 1841, the youngest of ten children of Isaac and Jane (Snodgrass) Noll. Mr. and Mrs. Deeming have had eight children five of whom as living – Freeman, born October 27, 1872; Isabella B., born October 15, 1874; Guido H., born August 20, 1876; Georgia M., born May 30, 1879; Jesse, born July 21, 1882; Anna, born August 31, 1868, died March 13, 1869, and two died in early infancy. In politics Mr. Deeming is a Republican. In religion he adheres to the faith of the United Brethren church. He has served his township as school director and road commissioner, and in all the duties imposed on him as been an efficient and reliable public servant. Mrs. Deeming's father was born in Ohio, August 2, 1805, and her mother in Virginia April 25, 1805. About 1844 they moved to Fulton County, Illinois, and eight years later to Waverly, Bremer County, Iowa, where they lived eleven years. In 1863 they moved to Black hawk County, and settled in East Waterloo Township, where the mother died October 27, 1868, and the father March 1, 1873. Mr. Noll enlisted in the war of the Rebellion, in Company G, Thirty-seventh Iowa Infantry, in what was called the “Gray Beard Regiment,” and served two years, when he was discharged on account of disability, the result of an injury received by a fall at Rock Island.
William Deeming has a fine farm of 280 acres in Mount Vernon Township, 200 acres being on section 27 and eighty acres on section 28. He has a fine, large frame residence and his farm buildings are commodious and comfortable. He is one of the representative farmers of the township, a public-spirited, enterprising citizen and a good neighbor. He came to Black Hawk County from five miles east of Lockport, Will County, Illinois, in the spring of 1854, and worked for one Walter Hitchcock, to whom he had hired in Will County for $10 a month. He subsequently worked by the day and month till he had earned enough to buy forty acres of Government land, on the river, part of which was timber and part prairie land. He afterward bought eighty acres of prairie land and two years later sold it all at an advance on the purchase price and bought forty acres in Mount Vernon Township. This he afterward sold and went to Sioux City, spending three months looking for a location, more satisfactory, but finally returned to Black Hawk County, and bought eighty acres of his present farm of Dyer Williams. In 1866 he sold this and went to Adair County, Missouri, and bought 240 acres of land, on which he lived four months. At that time there were two political parties in Missouri and each had a secret society. Representatives from these parties visited him and told him he must join one or the other of them. This he declined to do, saying that he preferred returning to Iowa. An aunt of Mrs. Deeming lived at Kirksville, and they went there to buy their household furniture, but the aunt advising them not to stay there as they "did not know what hung over their heads", they only bought a cook stove, which they sold for one-half its cost and returned to Iowa, exchanging their 240 acres for the eighty acres they had left in Mount Vernon Township. Mr. Deeming made the first improvements on his land, and built the first house, a small frame, in which he lived till he built his present residence. He has been successful, due to his energy and good management. Mr. Deeming was born in Meltonmowbray, Leicestershire, England, March 7, 1834, a son of Thomas and Ann Maria (Dixon) Deeming. His mother died in England, November 1, 1842, aged thirty-three years, and his father in this township, March 21, 1880, aged seventy-two years. His father married a second time and his wife died in Lockport, Illinois. He accompanied his father to the United States when he was fifteen years old, and lived in Lockport till coming to Iowa. He was married November 28, 1858, to Ellen Ford, a native of Wyandotte County, Ohio, born September 9, 1838, a daughter of David and Catharine (Van Gundy) Ford. Her parents were natives of Ross County, Ohio, her father born in 1807 and her mother in 1812. About 1853 they moved to Black Hawk County, Iowa, and settled in Washington Township. Here her mother died February 21, 1879, and her father still lives. Mr. and Mrs. Deeming have six children--Nancy A., born September 16, 1859, was married February 3, 1880, to George Knapp, of Waterloo Township; Josiah, born December 29, 1862; William Henry, born April 2, 1867; Louisa, born June 7, 1869; Katie M., born January 23, 1873; Nellie J., born April 8, 1877. In politics Mr. Deeming was formerly a Republican, but now affiliates with the Democratic party. He has served his township as road supervisor and trustee.
H. H. DE WITT, one of the pioneers of Black Hawk County, and one of the most respected citizens, resides on section 1, Black Hawk Township. He was born in Chemung County, New York, July 16, 1814, and in 1818 his parents, Charles and Lydia De Witt, moved to Richland County, Ohio, and thence in 1830 to Delaware County, the same State. He was married March 8, 1835, to Mary M. Caulkins, who was born in Chenango County, New York, March 1, 1812, a daughter of Ithel and Polly (Terrell) Caulkins. In early life Mr. De Witt learned the carpenter's and cabinet maker's trades, which he followed exclusively a number of years. In 1852 he came to Iowa and lived three years in Cedar County, moving in 1855 to Black Hawk County and locating on the land which is now his valuable farm. He owns 114 acres and has a pleasant, comfortable home. When the war of the Rebellion broke out he showed his loyalty to the old flag by offering his services in its defense, but was rejected on account of his age. He has held various official relations in his township, and has fulfilled his duties efficiently and conscientiously. His life has been that of an earnest, practical Christian, believing in the broadest sense in the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man. Mr. and Mrs. De Witt have passed the fiftieth anniversary of their marriage, and have outlived the most of their ten children. They have lived useful lives and have won the love and confidence of their friends and neighbors, who have only words of admiration and praise to bestow upon them.