Search billions of records on

Henry County >> 1888 Index

Portrait and Biographical Album of Henry County, Iowa 
Chicago: Acme Publishing Company, 1888.


Unless otherwise specified, biographies submitted by Pat Ryan White.

James Harvey Day, residing on section 35, Marion Township, was born in New London, Iowa, Jan. 19, 1855. His father, Ransom Day, is a native of Logan County, Ohio, and his mother, Rachel (Cox) Day, is a native of Canada. They emigrated to Henry County about 1848, settling in New London, where he was engaged in carpenter work, which trade he had learned when a young man and still follows. When James was but an infant his parents removed to the city of Des Moines, where they resided for two years, then going to Augusta, Des Moines County, they made that place their home until 1869, when they removed to Marshall.

When a lad of fourteen years James Day went to Mt. Pleasant, where he was employed in a brickyard as one of the burners, working in that yard until 1874, and at last had charge of a kiln. Going to Fairfield, he worked in that city during the summer of 1874 as foreman of a brickyard. Returning to Mt. Pleasant, he was again engaged in the old brickyard, working until 1878, when he went to Wilber, Neb., where he worked at his trade for a short time, but soon returned to Mt. Pleasant. In 1879 Mr. Day decided to go to Topeka, Kan., and in that city worked one winter at the carpenter trade, and the next spring began track work on the Santa Fe Railroad. He was then employed by the railroad company as bridge carpenter, continuing in their employ for nearly two years, and then returned again to Mt. Pleasant. He engaged to work with the St. Louis, Keokuk & Northern Railroad, but only remained with them for two months. Going to Ketcham's, a place four miles west of Mt. Pleasant, he was engaged as Superintendent of the brickyard, being in this employ for a year, during which time he went to Missouri and made a kiln of brick. Returning to Mt. Pleasant, he again took charge of the old brickyard, manufacturing brick for the asylum. He made two and a half millions of brick in three years. In the spring of 1887 Mr. Day purchased seventeen acres of land and a neat cottage on section 35 of Marion Township, and also the brickyard formerly operated by Daniel Stephens. Upon this farm he moved, and continues to carry on brick-making. This first year he has manufactured four hundred thousand bricks. He intends making stock brick for fronts and fine walls, and will also take contracts for supplying customers with all kinds of brick. Mr. Day is a thorough workman, and understands his profession perfectly, and of the young, enterprising business men none rank higher than our subject.

Mr. Day was united in marriage, in 1873, with Miss Elizabeth Edwards, who is a native of Henry County, and a daughter of Hiram Edwards. Nine children have graced the union of this worthy couple: Morris R,; Eddie, deceased; William, Mattie; Bette, who died in infancy; Leander, Bessie, Bertha and Richard. Mr. Day holds the political views of the Republican party, while socially he is a member of the I. O. O. F.

Within the pages of this volume will be found a fine engraving of the brickyard spoken of above and belonging to Mr. Day.

Wesley K. Dillon, Assistant Supervisor of the Iowa State Hospital for the Insane, Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, since April 1, 1885, was born in Wheeling, Va. (now West Virginia), June 27, 1846. His father, Reuben Dillon, was born in Allegheny County, Pa., was a hatter by trade, and of Scotch-Irish descent. The family were residents of America prior to the Revolution, and were represented in all the important wars of this country. The subject of this sketch and his father were both soldiers of the late war, members of Company D, 62d Pennsylvania Regiment. The grandfather of Wesley K. Dillon was a soldier in the War of 1812, and his great-grandfather, a soldier in the Revolutionary War. The mother of our subject was Lydia B. Monk before her marriage. She was born in Center County, Pa., and died when Wesley K. was but a child. Her ancestors came to America from Hanover in Colonial times. One of her relatives was an officer in the Revolutionary War and served on Gen. Washington's staff. After his mother's death, Wesley accompanied his father to Minnesota, in the fall of 1856, where they spent four years, and in the fall of 1860 returned to Pennsylvania, and July 4, 1861, they both enlisted in Company D, 62d Pennsylvania Infantry. His father served in the Quarter-master's Department, and died from exposure while in service. Wesley K. was but fifteen years of age when he enlisted. He was wounded at the battle of Spottsylvania Court-House, Va., May 12, 1864, by bullets and buckshot in his left lower leg, and was confined to the hospital from May 14 to Sept. 1, 1864, when he was mustered out, receiving an honorable discharge. On his return from the army he attended school, with a view of fitting himself for college, but circumstances prevented the consummation of his plans, and he engaged in teaching school. In 1869 he became connected with the Dixmont (Pa.) Hospital for the Insane, and continued there till 1874, when he took a two-years course of lectures at the medical department of the Western Reserve University, of Cleveland, Ohio. He was employed at the Danville Hospital for the Insane, from Feb. 24, 1876, until 1882, when he engaged at the Morristown (N.J.) Asylum for the Insane, till 1884, when he accepted the position of private secretary to William McKinney, of Brooklyn, N.Y., and in March, 1885, was appointed to his present position at the Iowa State Hospital for the Insane, at Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.

Mr. Dillon is an efficient and faithful officer, and is held in high esteem by all with whom he is connected. Politically, he is a Republican. He is a member of McFarland Post No. 20, G.A.R., of the Harlan Camp of the Sons of Veterans, Mt. Pleasant, and a Knight Templar Mason, a member of Mt. Pleasant Lodge No. 8, A.F. & A.M., of Henry Chapter No. 8, R.A.M., and of Jerusalem Commandery No. 20, K.T., all of Mt. Pleasant.

Alfred Doan (deceased)

He was born 16 Aug 1831 in Orange County, Indiana, the son of Mahlon Doan. He married Miss Rachel Melton 19 Aug 1853. She was born in Warren County IN, the daughter of John and Phebe (Huston) Melton, and they had three children: Sarah Luella, b. 1 Sep 1856, the deceased daughter of Zimri Brown of Salem Twp. and they had two children, Michael Devillo Melton, and Frank Ebert Melton; Sarah Jane who is an adopted daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Faulkner of Salem, IA; and Mahlon Harlan who was born 15 Jan 1860 and married Mary Ellen Stevenson who was born in Henry County. They had one child, Myron Alfred; Perry Albert b. 29 Apr 1872. Boths sons reside with their mother.

Alfred Doan was in the 25th IA Volunteer Infantry, and enlisted in 1862, serving three years. he was in the battles of Arkansas Post, the siege of Vicksburg, and the Chattanooga Campaign, Resaca, Dallas, Kennesaw Mtn. and battles around Atlanta, Lovejoy Station, Ships Gap, and Bentonville. He was with Sherman on his march through Georgia and the Carolinas to Richmond and Washington. Mr. Doan was promoted to Sgt. on 10 Feb 1863. The Regiment mustered out at Washington D.C.

He returned home and engaged in farming until his death on 19 Oct 1880, at 51 years of age.  He never had his usual health after he came out of the army, and died from the effects of exposures endured in the service.

He was a member of the IOOF at Salem and was a Republican. His widow still resides on the old farm. He was a man in advance of his times. His farm of 90 acres was one of the best improved in the county.

Mahlon Doan

He was born 7 April 1804 in Orange County, NC, the son of Ebenezer and Elizabeth (Stout) Doan. Ebenezer was born in NC and died in 1860 at a very advanced age. Elizabeth was also born in NC, and she died when Mahlon was a child. They had eight children,  two of whom are living: Mahlon and Nancy, who married James Tomlinson and lives in Plainfield, Indiana.

Mahlon married first, Jane Freeman, a native of North Carolina, a daughter of John and Charity Freeman who were both natives of North Carolina. Mahlon and Jane had three children: Alfred; John, who resides in Tippecanoe Twp., and Julia Ann who died at age 19.

Mahlon's second wife was Alice Davis, who was born  in Orange County, IN, the daughter of Warner and Millie (Hudson) Davis, both natives of NC. They had four children: Sarah Emeline, who m. John Burton of Taylor County, IA; William who resides in Powesheik County, IA; Zach, who resides in Salem Twp.; and Mary E. who died at age four.

Mahlon and family were of the Society of Friends, and he was a Republican. He went to Henry County in 1837. He bought 200 acres in Section 11, Center Twp., where he still lives. He also owns 40 acres  adjoining, in Tippecanoe Twp.

Jasper N. Dutton

He resides on Sect. 22, Marion Twp., and was born  in Henry County, Nov. 4, 1850, the son of George and Dorcas (Ramsey) Dutton. His father is a native of Connecticut, his mother of Indiana. The family consisted of 9 children, two of whom died in  infancy; of those living D. Webster married Miss Amanda Bealer, daughter of Samuel Bealer of PA and they now live near Mt. Union in this county; Louisa is the wife of Capt. George W. Barr, a farmer, and resides near Spring Branch, NE; Frank B., married and lives in Newton, KS; Williard G., a farmer and stock-raiser of Udilla Co., NE, married Miss Kate Turner; Jasper is the 5th child; George W., married and lives at Coleridge, NE; Charles is a resident of Bennet, NE and wedded Miss Mary Smith, daughter of John Smith of Henry Co.

The father and mother of this family met at a very early day, and were married here. As George Dutton came here in 1835, he may truly be called a pioneer. There was only one log cabin where Mt. Pleasant now stands. He took a claim of 160 acres and built a log cabin where now stands a beautiful two-story dwelling. He remained in Henry Co. until 1869, when he removed to Montgomery Co., KS and entered 320 acres of land, and remained there until 1884 when wishing to be nearer his son George, he moved to Pierce Co., NE.

At the age of 21 his father gave Jasper 40 acres, and now has 400 acres in one body, the old home- stead of 160 acres being included.

In Dec, 1875 he married Miss Mary Montgomery who was born Jan. 6, 1856, and to them have been born 4 children: Ira, born Oct. 4, 1876, died June 5, 1883; Clyde, born Aug. 5, 1878; Fred, born May 8, 1881; and Art b. Oct. 8, 1884.