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Cerro Gordo County >> 1910 Index

History of Cerro Gordo County, Iowa
Ed. and comp. by J. H. Wheeler. 2 vols. Chicago: Lewis Pub Co., 1910


Biographies submitted by Kay Ehlers.


One of the representative younger members of the bar of Cerro Gordo county, Harvey Edward Law, has chosen a profession singularly in consonance with the name that he bears, and he is proving himself admirably equipped for the vocation to which he is giving himself with all of zeal and loyalty, realizing that in the law the rewards come only to those who are willing to work and to subordinate other interests to its demands.

Mr. Law is a native of the Hawkeye state and finds himself bound to the same by claims of affection and loyalty.  He was born in Black Hawk township, Black Hawk county, Iowa, on the old homestead farm, about four miles west of the village of Hudson, and the date of his nativity was November 24, 1884.  He is a son of William M. and Eliza Jessie Law, the former of whom was born in the province of Ontario , Canada , and the latter in the city of Chicago , where she was reared and educated and where her marriage was solemnized.  Soon after their life destinies had been thus united, William M. Law and his wife came to Iowa and took up the residence on the homestead farm which he had previously secured, in 1875.  They continued to reside on this homestead, the birthplace of the subject of this sketch, until, 1887, when they removed to the village of Hudson, and in 1894 they removed to the city of Waterloo, this state, where the father still resides and where the devoted wife and mother died on the 28th of May, 1907, at the age of fifty years.  She was a woman of most gentle and gracious character and held the affectionate regard of all who came within the sphere of her influence.  She was a devout member of the Presbyterian church, in which her husband also holds membership.  Her parents immigrated from Yorkshire , England , and became pioneers of the city of Chicago , where they took up their residence when the great western metropolis was a place of minor importance and where both he and his wife continued to reside until their death.  As already stated, William M. Law was born in the province of Ontario, Canada, and he is a son of Captain William Law, who served as an officer in the English army and who immigrated to Canada when a young man.  There his marriage was solemnized there he was identified with agricultural pursuits until shortly after the close of the Civil war in the Unites States, when he came to Iowa and established his home in Black Hawk county, where he secured a tract of wild land a reclaimed the same into a productive farm.  After his retirement from active labors he took up his abode at Cedar Falls , this state, where he continued to reside until his death, which occurred about the year 1888.  The widow, whose maiden name was Harriette Bradley passed the residue of her life at Cedar Falls and attained to the venerable age of eighty-nine years ; she was summoned to the life eternal in 1908.  William M. Law took up his residence in Waterloo in 1894, when he assumed the office of sheriff of Black Hawk county, in which he served for a period of ten years.  He still owns his valuable farm and is one the well known and highly esteemed citizens of Black Hawk county, with whose civic and material development and upbuilding he has been closely identified.  For a number of years he was secretary, treasurer and manager of the Waterloo Cement Machinery Company, of which he was one of the organizers, and he has been an influential factor in the business and public affairs in his county.  William M. and Eliza J. Law became the parents of five children, of whom the subject of this review was the third in order of birth.  Concerning the other children the following brief data are given : Ralph A. is the cashier of the Central Savings Bank of Waterloo ; William R. is incumbent of the office of postmaster of that city ; Nellie is the wife of Robert W. Parrott, of Waterloo ; and Harriet is the wife of Fredrick A. Fenton, of Huron, South Dakota.  All of the children were born and reared in Black Hawk county.

Harvey E. Law was about four years of age at the time of the family removal from the farm to the village of Hudson , where he gained his rudimentary education in the public schools.  He was ten years of age when his father took up his residence in the city of Waterloo , and continuing his studies in the public schools, the subject of this review completed the curriculum of the high school in East Waterloo , in which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1901.  He was matriculated in the University of Iowa , at both the academic and law departments, in the latter of which he was graduated as a member of the class of 1907, with the degree of Bachelor of Laws.  After his graduation he made a trip through the west in company with his classmate and present.

Charles E. Lighter

Charles E. Lighter, an employe of the C. M. and St. P. Railroad for nearly thirty years and since 1886 a locomotive engineer, has been a resident of Mason City, Iowa, nearly all this time. He was born near Marietta, Ohio, in 1860, son of Henry and Elizabeth (Getzenganner) Lighter, and traces his ancestry on the paternal side to Germany and on the maternal side to Switzerland. Henry Lighter went from Maryland to Ohio, later to Illinois and finally to Kansas, where he died in the summer of 1885. By occupation he was a farmer. His widow died in Chicago in 1908. They were faithful members of the German Lutheran church, in which faith they reared their family, and of their eleven children three sons are now living.

At the time the Lighter family left Ohio and moved to Illinois, Charles E. was five years of age. He grew to manhood on a farm near Champaign, Illinois, where he received a fair education, and when he started out on his own responsibility he engaged in railroading, which he has since followed.

On March 4, 1885, Mr. Lighter married Miss Nellie H. Tofflamire, a native of Illinois and of German descent, her parents having been early settlers and farmers of Boone county, Illinois. While not a member of any church Mrs. Lighter attends worship at the Presbyterian church. Politically Mr. Lighter is a Republican, well posted on party affairs and always at the polls to cast his franchise on election day, but never active in politics. He has long been a member of the B. of L. E. at Mason City, and for fifteen years local committeeman.