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Decatur County >> 1915 Index

History of Decatur County, Iowa
J. M. Howell and H. C. Smith, supervising eds. 2 vols. Chicago: S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1915.


Unless otherwise noted, biographies submitted by Dick Barton.


The Davis City News, which was established by Grant Mallory and which is still conducted by him, has gained a place among the wide-awake and reliable weekly newspapers of this section of Iowa. Mr. Mallory was born in Delaware county, Iowa, on the 12th of June, 1869, a son of Alvador H. and Rebecca E. (Cuppett) Mallory, natives of New York and Pennsylvania respectively. The father, who was by occupation a farmer, removed to Delaware county in the early days of the history of this state and entered land from the government. He made three trips by ox team to California during the gold craze, but subsequently gave his attention to farming in Delaware county, Iowa, until 1880, when he sold his land there and moved to South Dakota, where he purchased land. He also rented a considerable tract and one season had one thousand acres in wheat.

Eventually he retired from active life and removed to Canton, South Dakota, where he resided until his demise in 1903. His widow died in 1909.

Grant Mallory was reared at Manchester, Iowa, and Canton, South Dakota, and after completing the course offered in the public schools attended Augustana College at Canton for one year. He remained with his parents until he was eighteen years of age and in his youth learned the printer's trade. Upon leaving home he went on the stage and was quite successful as an actor. He followed that profession until 1907, when he was married. In April, 1910, he removed to Davis City and founded the Davis City News, which he has since published. It now has a sworn circulation of five hundred and is patronized to a considerable extent by the local merchants, who recognize its value as an advertising medium. It has a good news service and its editorials are clearly and forcibly written. Mr. Mallory has equipped his plant with modern machinery and does job printing in addition to printing the Davis City News.

Mr. Mallory married Miss Bessie Carter, of Savanna' Illinois, who is a daughter of Isaac and Laura (Lee) Carter, natives respectively of Ohio and New York. Her father has been in the employ of the Wells Fargo Express Company for many years and is still residing in Savanna, Illinois. Mr. and Mrs. Mallory have a daughter, Rosamond, who is now in her third year.

Mr. Mallory is a republican and personally and through the medium of his paper does much in behalf of that party, although he places the best good of the community above party success. Fraternally he is identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and since coming to Davis City he has made many warm friends, while all who know him hold him in sincere respect.

William Russell Manchester, a well known and highly regarded farmer of new Buda township, was born in Holmes county, Ohio, on the 7th of March, 1856. His father, Isaac Manchester, was born in Washington county, Pennsylvania, of English and Holland Dutch ancestry and grew to manhood in Ohio, where he was taken when two years of age. He was married in Holmes county, Ohio, to Miss Emily Ross, who is a native of that county and is descended from Scotch and English stock. In 1866 they came west and located southeast of Leon in Decatur county, Iowa, where the father farmed for three years. At the end of that time a removal was made to New Buda township, where they resided for two years, after which they again located near Leon. In 1871,however, they went back to Ohio, where they continued to reside until 1878. In that year they returned to Iowa and located west of Lineville, where they remained for two decades. The father died near Mineral Springs, Missouri, March 21, 1915, but the mother is still living and makes her home with her son Hiram, who resides near Davis City. Mr. And Mrs. Isaac Manchester were the parents of seven children, namely: William Russell; Simon c., a resident of Alaska; Hiram, of Leon; Lydia, now Mrs. Samuel Stuteville, of Morgan township; John; Wylie; and Paul A., of Mercer county, Missouri.

William Russell Manchester attended district school in Holmes county, Ohio, and in Decatur county, Iowa. In his early manhood he taught school in Holmes county, Ohio, in Decatur county, Iowa, in Missouri and in Colorado, following that profession for fifteen terms in all. When twenty-three years of age he worked on the construction of the railroad between Corydon and Centerville, Iowa. In 1884 he located two miles west of Lineville, Iowa, and after farming there for two years removed to the vicinity of Ravenna, Missouri, where he followed agricultural pursuits for two years. At the end of that time he removed to Baca county, Colorado, where he rented land for about seven years. He was then for two years in the Ozark mountains in Missouri, but in 1896 returned to this county and operated a rented farm until 1901. In that year he purchased forty acres on section 15, New Buda township, and in 1908 he bought his present farm of a quarter section on section 16, New Buda township. He carries on general farming and stock-raising and in the conduct of his work displays foresight, initiative and good management.

On the 6th of April, 1884, Mr. Manchester married Miss Rosa De Long, a daughter of I. N. and Editha (Brooks) De Long. Her father, who was born in Indiana of Irish and French ancestry, removed to Ohio when a boy and in his early manhood came to Decatur county, Iowa, where he was numbered among the pioneer settlers. He was a farmer by occupation and was highly esteemed in his community. During the Civil war he served in a Missouri cavalry regiment. His wife, who was born in Kentucky of Yankee stock, was reared in Harrison county, Missouri, and there their marriage occurred. To this union were born ten children: Mrs. Manchester; Alonzo, of Texarkana, Texas; Marcellus, also of Texarkana; Hulda, who married Joseph Brady, now living in Harrison county, Missouri; John, of Lamoni, Iowa; Josephine, who married C. E. Weabel, of New Buda township; Fred O., of Bevier, Missouri; Blanche, who married William Dexter, of Lamoni, Iowa; Newton, of Lamar, Colorado; and Eunice, the wife of Roy Atterberry, of Blythedale, Missouri.

Mr. and Mrs. Manchester are the parents of eleven children: Stella L., who was born May 14, 1885, and is the wife of Ephraim McDaniel, a farmer of Blythedale, Missouri, by whom she has two children, Fern and Forrest; Garvin A., who birth occurred November 17, 1886, and who is at home; Grace, born September 8, 1888, who died then ten months old; Bertha M., born December 27, 1889, now the wife of Carl McDaniel, a farmer of New Buda township, by whom she has a son and daughter, Clarence and Opal; Ernest E., born September 16, 1891, who is at home; Claude W., born January 21, 1893, who is at home; Florence Belle, born February 22, 1895, at home; Dorcas, born February 20, 1897, who will graduate from the Davis City high school with the class of 1916; and Morris Maynard, born November 24, 1899, Marjorie B., born April 11, 1902, and Mark W., born December 18, 1904, all attending the district school.

Mr. Manchester is independent in politics, voting for the man whom he deems best suited for the office in question. For two years he served as assessor of New Buda township and for fifteen years he has been school director, doing much in that time to promote the advancement of the public schools. He was for many years a member of the Masonic blue lodge at Leon, but is not now affiliated with that body. Both he and his wife belong to the Church of Christ at Davis City and take a keen interest in the furtherance of its work and the spread of its influence.  


John E. McClaran, a worthy native son and representative agriculturist of Decatur county, is now the owner of four hundred acres of valuable land on section 32, Burrell township. His birth occurred in Hamilton township, this county, in June, 1868, his parents being James and Gussella (Clark) McClaran, both natives of Ohio . The father, a farmer by occupation, removed to Indiana in an early day and in that state followed farming for some time. Subsequently he came to Decatur county, Iowa, purchasing a tract of land in Hamilton township which he cultivated for a good many years, later removing to New Buda township and afterward to Burrell township, where he was actively identified with agricultural pursuits until his demise in October, 1897. His undertakings were attended with a most gratifying measure of success and at the time of his death he owned about six hundred acres of rich and productive land. His wife was called to her final rest in November, 1911.

John E. McClaran was reared and educated in this county and after attaining his majority cultivated a rented tract of land for one year. Subsequently he bought and began the improvement of eighty acres of land on section 32, Burrell township, and later augmented his holdings by additional purchase from time to time until he now owns four hundred acres on that section. He leases the greater part of the land but is still actively connected with farming and live-stock interests, raising high grade stock and deriving a gratifying income from both branches of his business.

In April, 1891, Mr. McClaran was united in marriage to Miss Ellen Martin, daughter of Julius and Sarah (Lasley) Martin, who were natives of Ohio and became pioneer settlers of Decatur county. The father followed farming in New Buda township until the time of his death in 1896, but the mother survives and lives on the old home place. Mr. and Mrs. McClaran have two daughters, Una and Helen, who are twenty and eighteen years of age respectively.

Since age conferred upon him the right of franchise Mr. McClaran has supported the men and measures of the republican party and he has ably served as trustee of Burrell township for some time. His religious faith is indicated by his membership in the United Brethren church and he is also a worthy exemplar of the Masonic fraternity. His entire life has been spent within the borders of Decatur county and he is well known and highly esteemed as one of its substantial agriculturists and representative citizens.

WILLIAM McINTOSH, a retired farmer living in Davis City, was born in Sullivan county, Indiana, December 18, 1843, a son of John and Elizabeth (Wamyer) McIntosh, both natives of Tennessee and descended respectively from Scotch-Irish and German ancestry.  Their marriage occurred in Indiana, where the father followed agricultural pursuits for a number of years, but in 1855 he removed with his family to Mercer county, Missouri, and there purchased land.  In 1869 he sold that farm and came to Decatur county, Iowa, locating in Hamilton township. He passed away upon his farm in that township, March 8, 1877, and was survived for several years by his widow.  He served during the Civil was in Company B, Fifth Kansas Volunteer Cavalry, and held the rank of first lieutenant.

William McIntosh attended the public schools in Indiana and after removing to Missouri worked as a farm hand.  At the outbreak of the Civil war he was employed by a man in Davis county, Missouri, and when a local company of Confederate volunteers was organized by Captain David Inyard, Mr. McIntosh's employer offered him his best horse, saddle and bridle if he would enlist in the southern army.  He told him many falsehoods about the "Yankees," as he called the northern men, but our subject said he would wait until he heard from home before enlisting. He wrote to his father, who upon receiving the letter went in person to talk the matter over with him and told him that he had enlisted in the northern army.  Mr. McIntosh says: "He and friends at home convinced me that the only right thing to do was to fight for the preservation of the Union and I did and fought hard."  He enlisted at Princeton, Missouri, August 13, 1862, in the Union army and took part in fifteen battles, including those at Decatur, Georgia, and New Hope church, both of which were hotly contested, and he also participated in the sieges of Vicksburg and Jackson, Mississippi, and Atlanta and Savannah, Georgia, going with Sherman on his march to the sea.  Although he saw a great deal of hard fighting and was often where the fire was the hottest he was never wounded.  He participated in the Great Review at Washington and was honorably discharged in that city on the 13th of June, 1865.

After returning from the war Mr. McIntosh purchased one hundred and twenty acres of land in Mercer county, Missouri, which he farmed until January, 1882, when he sold out and removed to New Buda township, Decatur county, where he purchased one hundred and eighty-two acres. For eleven years he devoted his energies to the cultivation of that tract and won a gratifying measure of success as a farmer and stock-raiser.  On the 3d of September, 1893, he sold his farm and removed to Davis City, where he has since resided.  During his active life he gained a competence which now enables him to live retired in the enjoyment of the comforts of life.

On the 29th of October, 1865, occurred the marriage of Mr. McIntosh and Miss Polly Griffin, a daughter of James and Rebecca (Dykes) Griffin, the former born in North Carolina, of Irish ancestry.  The mother's birth occurred in Tennessee and her parents were natives of Ireland.  Both Mr. and Mrs. Griffin passed away in Missouri. To Mr. and Mrs. McIntosh have been born eight children.  Elizabeth Rebecca married John W. Poush, an auto dealer of Davis City, and they have two children, Floyd and Emerson.  John Andrew, who is a clothing merchant of Leon, married Della Cherrington and they have two children, Francis Marion and Helen Elizabeth. Martha died when twenty-seven years of age.  James Franklin, who is now living in Waltham, Massachusetts, served in the Spanish-American was under Colonel Loper, in the Fifty-first Iowa Volunteer Infantry. He married Miss Dorothy Bernard.  Lorinda married Fred Ross, a piano tuner of Duluth, Minnesota, and they have a son, William.  Stella is the wife of William Bullington, a ranchman of Gooding, Idaho, by whom she has a daughter, Louise.  Margaret married John Asbach, a piano tuner of Duluth, Minnesota.  Clara, the youngest member of the family, is forelady in a music house in Denver, Colorado.

Mr. McIntosh is a republican and for a quarter of a century has served as township constable, the length of his retention in office proving the ability with which he has discharged his duties.  For many years he has belonged to the Grand Army post of Davis City and he derives much pleasure from his association with others who went to the defense of the Union in the time of its peril.