History of Marion County, Iowa
Dr. C. E. James has been continuously engaged in the general practice of medicine and surgery at Durham for the past twenty-seven years and is widely recognized as an able and successful representative of the profession in Marion county. His birth occurred in Warren county, Iowa, on the 5th of December, 1851, his parents being S. V. R. and Dorcas Anne (Kenyon) James. In 1843 the former took up his abode in Warren county, this state, and both he and his wife now lie buried in Palmyra, that county. To them were born eight children, four sons and four daughters.
Having determined upon the practice of medicine as a life work, C. E. James read for three years under the direction of J. C. Merietta of Palmyra, and then entered the Keokuk Medical College, which institution conferred upon him the degree of M. D. in 1880. He opened an office at Swan, Marion county, and was there engaged in practice for seven years, on the expiration of which period he came to Durham, which has since remained the scene of his professional labors. He has demonstrated his skill and ability in checking the ravages of disease and has been accorded a gratifying and growing practice. With the progress of the profession he keeps in close touch through his membership in the Marion County Medical Society, the Iowa State Medical Society and the American Medical Association.
On the 10th of August, 1881, Dr. James was united in marriage to Miss Laura Miller, a daughter of Gabriel and Anna Miller. One daughter, Avis, died in infancy, and the other daughter, Helen, is at home.
Dr. James gives
his political allegiance to the democracy but has no desire for the
honors and emoluments of office, preferring to concentrate his energies
upon his professional interests, which have brought him well deserved
prosperity and enviable recognition.
For a long period Joshua Jenkins had the distinction of being the last surviving veteran of the Mexican war living in Marion county. Moreover, when a nonagenarian he was still an active factor in the world's work, assisting in the labors of the fields upon his home farm and accomplishing tasks which many a man of less resolute spirit and of more limited industry would have failed to accomplish. He retained his physical powers in large measure and seemed a man whose age was twenty years less. In spirit and interests he was yet in his prime when he had passed the ninetieth milestone on life's journey.
Mr. Jenkins was a native of Monongalia county, Virginia, now West Virginia, born December 12, 1822, and when a youth of fourteen years he accompanied his parents on their removal westward to Indiana, where the family home was established in 1836. He shared with the family in all of the hardships, privations and incidents of pioneer life. He was a young lad when his father died and he became of the greatest assistance to his mother in rearing the family and providing for their support. After a residence of ten years in Indiana he responded to the country's call for troops, for the United States was at that time engaged in war with Mexico. He took part in the battle of Buena Vista and a number of lesser engagements and at the close of the war received an honorable discharge and was also given a land warrant in recognition of his services. This entitled him to secure one hundred and sixty acres of any unoccupied government land district and with the money he had saved from his pay as a soldier he bought another land warrant. Coming to Iowa, he located his two claims on the 16th of May, 1848, thus becoming the owner of three hundred and twenty acres on English creek, in Marion county, two and one-half miles south of the little frontier village of Knoxville, which at that time contained but three stores, a blacksmith shop and seventeen log cabins.
After locating his claim Mr. Jenkins returned to Indiana and there made further arrangements for having a home of his own by his marriage on the 28th of December, 1848, to Miss Cerene Elder. Early in the following year they started for the Marion county farm, arriving in this county in May. Mr. Jenkins at once began building a little log cabin which they occupied for five years. In 1855 he erected a more modern residence, which continued to be his home throughout his remaining days. As the years passed on eleven children were added to the family circle, of whom two died in infancy, while three passed away after reaching adult age and left families. Mrs. Jenkins' death occurred on the 7th of November, 1882, and a daughter and five sons survive the father. These are: Mrs. J. B. Clark, of Knoxville township; Thomas J., of Holliday, Missouri; Stephen, also of Knoxville township; William, living in the city of Knoxville; Jarrett, whose home is north of Knoxville; and Charles, who for more than twenty years prior to his father's death managed the farm. There were also fifteen grandchildren, eleven great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren at the time of Mr. Jenkins' death.
From the time that he brought his bride to Iowa Mr. Jenkins continuously resided upon his farm in this county, remaining thereon for sixty-five years and occupying the same bedroom for fifty-nine years. He never had a mortgage upon his farm. He won his success by honorable, straightforward methods and was never known to take advantage of the necessities of a fellowman in any business transaction. He worked hard, carefully managed the cultivation of his fields and even up to the time that he was ninety years of age it was no unusual thing to see him planting his crops, felling trees, sawing logs or caring for his stock. He raised large numbers of cattle, sheep and hogs and from the sale of his stock derived a gratifying annual income.
Mr. Jenkins never
belonged to any church yet gave generously to the support of the cause
of religion and in his life ever endeavored to follow the Golden Rule.
He held friendship inviolable and was always loyal to those to whom
he gave his regard. He was a good neighbor, an upright, honorable man,
and his death was deeply regretted by many friends. As the day with
its morning of hope and promise, its noontide of activity, its evening
of completed and successful effort, ending in the grateful rest and
quiet of the night, so was the life of this man.
Stephen Jenkins, who is a prosperous farmer residing two and a half miles south of Knoxville, is a son of the late Joshua Jenkins, who is mentioned at greater length elsewhere in this work. He was born upon the family homestead in Knoxville township, this county, on the 1st of September, 1863. Upon reaching the proper age he entered the public schools and after completing the course there became a student in an academy at Knoxville. Although he has devoted the greater part of his life to farming and stock-raising, for two years he conducted a grocery store at Knoxville. He now operates a fine farm of one hundred and eighty acres on section 19, Knoxville township, which he owns and upon which he has made many improvements. His residence is modern in its appointments and the buildings for the shelter of grain and stock are substantial and well adapted to their purpose. He uses the latest models of agricultural machinery and overlooks nothing the doing of which might add to the value of his farm or increase the efficiency of his work. In early manhood he spent a year in the west but decided that the advantages of his native county were equal to those offered elsewhere, and since returning he has remained a continuous resident of Marion county. He carries on general farming and stock-raising but pays special attention to the raising of Poland China hogs and shorthorn cattle.
On the 6th of February, 1887, Mr. Jenkins was united in marriage to Miss Zella Rogers, who passed away on the 31st of January, 1914, aged forty-eight years, two months and eleven days. She was born in this county on the 20th of November, 1865, a daughter of Benjamin and Mary Elizabeth (Ruffner) Rogers. Her father died on the 12th of September, 1905, and her mother is still living, making her home at Knoxville. To Mr. and Mrs. Jenkins was born a daughter, Mabel, who has completed the course in the local high school and is now at home.
Mr. Jenkins is a
progressive democrat in his political affiliations and has held school
office, as did his father, who was for many years secretary-treasurer
of the school board. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church,
as was his wife, and willingly contributes of his time and means to
the furtherance of its work. His practical knowledge of agriculture,
coupled with his energy and good business judgment, has enabled him
to win financial success in his chosen occupation and the straightforwardness
and uprightness of his life have gained him many friends, who value
highly his good opinion.
E. A. Johnson, the efficient cashier of the Bank of Bussey, was born in Liberty township, this county, March 9, 1867, and is a son of John B. and Eleanor (Schee) Johnson, both of whom were natives of Ohio. They were married, however, in Marion county, Iowa, in April, 1866, and their family numbered five children, four of whom are yet living, namely: E. A., of this review; Minta, the wife of Dr. W. E. Sanders, practicing in Des Moines; Valetta, who married J. W. Milne, also of Des Moines; and Charles A., who resides in Council Bluffs. The fourth child of the family, Viola, died at the age of twenty-two years. The parents are still living and reside in Des Moines. The father came to Marion county in 1865 and the mother in 1846. John B. Johnson engaged in farming in Liberty township and for an extended period carried on general agricultural pursuits and the raising of graded stock. He ranked with the progressive agriculturists of the community and it was with deep regret that his fellow townsmen saw him leave this county to become a resident of Des Moines. His political allegiance is given to the democratic party, but he has never sought nor held office. In 1894 he retired from active business life and at that time took up his abode in Bussey, where he lived until 1906, when he removed to the capital city.
In his youthful days E. A. Johnson attended the public schools and afterward became a student in Penn College at Oskaloosa, in which he pursued a two years' course. On the expiration of that period he returned home and in January, 1889, he was united in marriage to Miss Anna B. Knapp, a daughter of Wright and Ophelia (Shope) Knapp. In their family were eleven children, four of whom reached adult age, while three still survive. The parents, however, are now deceased. The mother was a sister of Judge Shope, of Chicago. Mr. and Mrs. Johnson became the parents of nine children: Olive, who is engaged in teaching in the Rock Rapids high school; Joseph A., who died when five years of age; Raymond, who died when an infant of two and a half months; Lambert, who died at the age of two years; Edith Marie, the wife of E. G. Doughman, a resident of Saskatchewan, Canada; Viola; Louis; James, who died at the age of three years; and Eleanor.
Mr. Johnson was reared to farm life but for some time has been closely and actively identified with banking interests in this county and is now cashier of the Bank of Bussey, which was organized in August, 1892, with James Schee, of Lincoln, Nebraska, as the president and Anna B. Johnson as assistant cashier. The stockholders are: Asa Johnson, C. Fergus, J. B. Johnson, of Des Moines, and Fred C. McMillan, of Des Moines. The bank has a paid up capital of fifteen thousand dollars. The business has grown continuously until the assets aggregate two hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars. The success of the institution is largely attributable to Mr. Johnson, who has been the active manager of the business and who in controlling the Bank of Bussey has kept in touch with the most modern and progressive financial methods.
In his political
views Mr. Johnson has always been a stalwart republican and is interested
in public affairs, cooperating in many movements which have for their
object the welfare and upbuilding of the community. He belongs to the
Odd Fellows society and the American Yeomen, and in his religious views
is a Methodist. His has been a well spent life. Active and enterprising,
he brooks no obstacles that can be overcome by persistent and earnest
effort and the integrity of his business methods is above question.
Among the men who are prominent factors in the life of Pella is numbered H. F. Johnson, the present mayor of the city and business manager of Pella's Weekblad, one of the leading papers in the state published in the Dutch language. Mr. Johnson was born in Buffalo, New York, February 18, 1858, a son of Gerrit and Minnie (Van der Berg) Johnson, natives of Holland and Belgium respectively. Their marriage was solemnized in Holland and in 1854 they came to this country. They first settled at Buffalo, New York, where the father found employment, but in 1864 the family removed to Iowa and Mr. Johnson purchased a farm near Pella, which he operated until 1881. In that year he retired and lived in well earned comfort and leisure until his death, which occurred on Christmas day, 1896. He survived his wife for many years as she passed away in 1881. They were both members of the Reformed church. To them were born eight children, three of whom survive, namely: Mrs. D. W. Gaass, a resident of Pella; Anthony, who lives in Creston, Iowa; and H. F., of this review. William Gerrit, who lived in New Sharon, died September 17, 1914.
H. F. Johnson attended the public schools in the acquirement of his education during his boyhood and assisted his father with the farm work. He devoted his time to agricultural pursuits until 1880 and then learned the wagonmaker's trade, which he followed for about thirteen years. In 1892 he was employed by G. A. Vander Mulen, a hardware merchant, as salesman and collector. Ten years later, in 1902, he opened a hardware store of his own at Pella and conducted it until 1904. In that year he bought an interest in Pella's Weekblad and has since been business manager of that publication. He is a man of marked energy and initiative and has given his time and thought to the management of the business interests of the paper with gratifying results. Its circulation has increased and more money has been received from advertisements, while study of the problems of buying and operation has resulted in a saving along those lines without a loss of efficiency.
Mr. Johnson was married in 1884 to Miss Gysie Stavast, a daughter of Henry and Hilleke (Schryvers) Stavast. To Mr. and Mrs. Johnson were born three children: Ella May and Alfred Alonzo, both at home; and Rowland, who died when an infant of one and a half years.
The family belong
to the Baptist church. Mr. Johnson is a democrat in politics and his
advice is often sought in local political circles. For five years he
served as alderman from the second ward, being a member of the city
council at two different times. In his second term he was the one who
started the movement which resulted in the extension of the water system
and the erection of the electric light plant, both of which are under
municipal ownership. For the past two years he has served as mayor of
the city and has been the means of instituting several needed improvements.
Fraternally he belongs to Pella Lodge, No. 55, A. F. & A. M., and
to the Knights of Pythias, in the latter of which he is past chancellor
and past prelate. Mr. Johnson is known to practically all of the citizens
of Pella and the general respect in which he is held is a well deserved
tribute to his ability and sterling qualities of character.
Fred G. Jones, a successful and progressive representative of mercantile interests in Marion county, is the proprietor of a general store at Bussey, conducting one of the best and most extensive establishments of the kind in the town. His birth occurred in Mahaska county, Iowa, on the 23d of September, 1875, his parents being Walter N. and Anna (Wycoff) Jones, who were born, reared and married in Illinois. In 1868 they took up their abode among the pioneer settlers of Mahaska county, Iowa, and for many years were identified with its progress and development. The father passed away on the 22d of June, 1899, but the mother survives and now makes her home with our subject. Their children were nine in number.
Fred G. Jones acquired his education in the common schools and when still young in years began providing for his own support. In 1896 he embarked in business as a merchant of Bussey, where he has since built up an extensive and gratifying patronage as proprietor of a general store and meat market. He carries a stock valued at about eight thousand dollars and in all his dealings is strictly honorable, enjoying a well merited reputation as one of the reliable, progressive and substantial business men of the community.
On the 23d of December, 1896, Mr. Jones was united in marriage to Miss Mamie Mehanna, her parents being A. R. and Jessie (Clancy) Mehanna, who in the spring of 1857 took up their abode among the pioneer residents of Marion county. The father has since take a prominent and active part in local affairs of importance and is widely recognized as a valued and influential citizen. To Mr. and Mrs. Jones have been born four children, namely: Walter Nelson, Dorothy, Helen and Clifford, all yet under the parental roof.
Mr. Jones is a stanch
republican in his political views and deeply interested in public affairs,
yet has never sought nor desired office as a reward for his party fealty.
Fraternally he is identified with the Masons, the Red Men, the Knights
of Pythias, the Woodmen of the World and the Yeomen, while his religious
faith is indicated by his membership in the Methodist Episcopal church,
to which his wife also belongs. The success which has attended his undertakings
well entitles him to recognition among the representative citizens of
this county, and his many sterling traits of character have won him
the warm friendship and kindly regard of those with whom he has come
On the list of Marion county's honored dead appears the name of Price Jones, who was well known in his community as a representative farmer, stock-raiser and mine owner. He was prominent in local affairs and his influence was always on the side of progress and improvement. A native of Ohio, he was born in Monroe county, February 19, 1839, his parents being Joseph and Margaret Jones. The family arrived in Iowa in 1849 and settled on government land in Liberty township, for it was then the pioneer epoch in the history of this section of the state and the work of progress and improvement had been scarcely begun. The family is of English and Dutch extraction. The parents continued to reside upon the home farm through many years and the father carefully transformed the place from a tract of wild prairie into richly cultivated fields. He was closely associated with the pioneer development and lived to see remarkable changes in the county. Both he and his wife have now passed away and they were laid to rest at Sandy Ridge.
No event of special importance occurred to vary the routine of farm life for Price Jones during the period of his boyhood and youth. He was a lad of but ten years when the family came to Marion county and he shared with the others in the hardships incident to life on the frontier. He became an active assistant in the work of the fields as his age and strength increased and after reaching manhood he felt no desire to change his occupation. On the contrary he concentrated his efforts upon farming and stock-raising and became the owner of an excellent tract of land which he brought under a high state of cultivation. He was also successful as a stock-raiser and became well known as a mine owner. In addition to his property in Marion county, which comprised many acres of farm land, he was the owner of a farm of one hundred and sixty acres in Jefferson township, Mahaska county, and at one time he also owned and operated a coal mine in Marion county.
On the 11th of April, 1868, Mr. Jones was united in marriage to Miss Dorcas L. Long, by whom he had two children, Joseph and Alvah. The wife and mother passed away in March, 1872, and on the 26th of November, 1876, Mr. Jones was again married, his second union being with Miss S. Jane McDowell, a daughter of James and Jane (Bigham) McDowell. Her mother came to Marion county as a widow in 1849, here married again and spent the remainder of her life. To Price and Jane (McDowell) Jones were born three children, namely: Willis; Maggie, who died at the age of six months; and Mary.
Mr. Jones exercise
his right of franchise in support of the men and measures of the republican
party and was greatly interested in the welfare and upbuilding of his
section of the state. At different times he was called to local offices
and ever discharged his duties with promptness and fidelity, doing the
best possible for the public in his official service. He was entitled
to wear the little bronze button that proclaims a man a member of the
Grand Army of the Republic, for he served throughout the entire period
of the Civil war as a member of Company C, Seventh Iowa Volunteer Infantry,
and was home on a furlough but once throughout the long period of hostilities.
He never faltered in the performance of duty, was frequently in the
thickest of the fight and took part in the long marches and strenuous
campaigns. In days of peace he was equally loyal to his country and
her welfare, and his devotion to the public good was manifest in many
tangible ways. His death occurred March 27, 1882, since which time his
widow has taken up her abode in Bussey, where she now makes her home.
Among the native sons of Marion county who have continued to reside here, feeling that the opportunities offered in this locality are equal to those to be found elsewhere, is Albert D. Jordan, a farmer and stockman, who owns and operates two hundred acres of land in Knoxville and Franklin townships. He was born in a log house upon the family homestead on the 15th of December, 1862, a son of Frederick and Henrietta (Prinikey) Jordan, both of whom have passed away. They were pioneers of this county and aided in the work of improvement and development.
Albert D. Jordan passed his boyhood upon the home farm and received excellent training in agriculture and also learned to value rightly the habits of industry and promptness. When not busy upon the farm he attended school in the neighborhood and thus further fitted himself for the duties of life. In 1873 his parents removed to the place where he now resides and he has lived there continuously since. For many years he has operated it and has made it one of the finely improved properties of the township. It comprises two hundred acres of fine land and returns to its owner a good income annually as he is energetic and progressive and follows the most efficient methods in his work.
Mr. Jordan was married in 1893 to Miss Dora Heavner, a daughter of John Heavner, of Knoxville. She was born and reared in this county and passed away here on the 17th of November, 1909, when forty years of age. She left a son and daughter; Dee, thirteen years old; and Henrietta, nine years of age.
Mr. Jordan has always
been a supporter of the republican party since attaining his majority
and has ably served his district as school director. Although not a
member of any church he is especially interested in the work of the
Methodist Episcopal denomination and can always be counted upon to further
any movement seeking the moral advancement of his community. His life
has been filled with useful activity and in achieving personal success
he has also contributed to the agricultural development of the county.
E. R. Jordan is the popular and capable cashier of the Guaranty Bank of Knoxville, which is one of the reliable financial institutions of the city. He was born near Pleasantville in 1883 of the marriage of John and Mary E. (Ruddell) Jordan, both natives of Adams county, Illinois, where their marriage occurred. The paternal grandfather, William F. Jordan, came to this state in the '40s and entered the land where Pleasantville now stands. The father, who was a farmer and also a merchant, passed away in 1898 and was survived by his widow until 1903. He was the father of seven children, three by a former marriage, one of whom is deceased, and four by the mother of the subject of this review. Two of that family have passed away. Two uncles of our subject, Miles and Wesley Jordan, were prominent merchants of Pleasantville for a number of years.
E. R. Jordan completed a commercial course in Elliott's Business College after graduating from the public schools and at the age of seventeen years entered the Citizens Bank of Pleasantville as bookkeeper and in time became cashier. In 1913 he accepted the position of cashier of the Guaranty Bank of Knoxville, in which connection he is still serving. The institution is a private bank and its ownership is vested in a copartnership comprising twenty-six members. It gives its depositors the largest security of any bank in the county, more than three thousand acres of Iowa land, over twenty-seven hundred of which are in this county. Mr. Jordan's knowledge of business affairs in general and of banking procedure in particular has been of great value to the bank and has contributed in large measure to the prosperity which the institution enjoys.
Mr. Jordan was married
in 1907 to Miss Lillis Hays, of Audubon, this state. He is a member
of the Christian church and a democrat in his political belief. Fraternally
he belongs to the local lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows,
of which he is past noble grand, and to the blue lodge and chapter of
the Masonic fraternity. Since coming to Knoxville he has gained recognition
as an energetic, prudent and successful business man and has also won
many warm friends, who esteem him for his admirable traits of character.
Through the years of his connection with Marion county Frederick Jordan, now deceased, ranked with the leading and representative farmers, owning a valuable property of two hundred and sixty acres on sections 7 and 8, Knoxville township. He was born in Brunswick, Germany, November 9, 1826, and was there reared to manhood. He learned the cabinetmaker's trade in his youth and guided by the laudable desire to make the best possible use of his time and opportunities, he came to the new world, believing that he would have better advantages on this side of the Atlantic. It was in 1847 that he made the voyage and soon afterward he became a resident of Madison, Wisconsin, where he followed various business pursuits during a period of eighteen months. At the end of that time he went to Fort Madison, Iowa, where he continued until 1852, and in the fall of that year he started for California, attracted by the discoveries of gold on the Pacific coast. Four and a half years were devoted to mining in that state, after which he returned to Fort Madison, where he lived until 1860, when he came to Marion county, here making his home until his death.
Throughout the period of his residence here Mr. Jordan carried on general agricultural pursuits and was very successful in the development of his fields and the improvement of his property. He was well known as a man of thrift, of energy and of determination, and his labors were soon evidenced in the substantial improvements which he placed upon his farm. In addition to cultivating the cereals best adapted to soil and climate he was extensively engaged in stock-raising and won substantial success as the years passed on, becoming eventually the owner of a splendid farm property of two hundred and sixty acres in Knoxville township.
In April, 1858,
Mr. Jordan was united in marriage to Miss Henrietta Brennaka, a native
of Germany, and they became the parents of fifteen children: Christina,
George, Louis, Emma, John, Charles, Albert, Anna, Henry and Mandy, all
of whom are yet living; and August, Willie, Clara, Minnie and Mary,
who have passed away. Mr. Jordan was devoted to the welfare of his family
and his greatest pleasure in his success came from the fact that it
enabled him to provide a good home for his wife and children. He passed
away in March, 1901, and his death was the occasion of deep and widespread
regret among those who knew him. He had never had occasion to feel sorry
that he came to America on attaining his majority, for in this country
he found the opportunities which he sought and in their improvement
gradually worked his way upward, ever proving a loyal citizen of his