Hon. Otto A. Helming

Honorable Otto A. Helming

Hon. Otto A. Helming is the present representative of his district in the state legislature and is accounted one of the most able, far-sighted and discriminating men in public life in Iowa. In Allamakee county he is known also as a progressive and successful agriculturist and a stock breeder and earlier on an extensive scale, his activities having done much to promote the development of the farming industry along modern and scientific lines. He was born upon the farm where he now lives March 9, 1868, and is a son of Frederick W. Helming, a native of Germany, who grew to manhood in that country and settled in pioneer times in Allamakee county, Iowa. He purchased land in Ludlow township and developed there a valuable and productive farm upon which he spent the last years of his life, dying in 1875.

Otto A. Helming is one of a family of five children. He was reared upon the home farm and acquired his primary education in the district schools of Ludlow township, supplementing this by two winter terms at the Waukon Seminary. After his father’s death he and his brother, Charles G., took charge of the home place and operated it together for some years, becoming well known as stock breeders and dealers. Eventually, however, Mr. Helming of this review purchased the interests of the other heirs and retained the homestead, whereon he has since resided. He gives a great deal of his attention to stock-raising and has a fine herd of pure-blooded Aberdeen Angus cattle and a number of fine Percheron horses and Chester White hogs. He is also active in the dairy business and was one of the principal promoters of the Ludlow Cooperative Creamery Association, of which he served as vice president and later as president for a number of years. He is very much interested in the modern and scientific aspects of arming and has been for many years identified with the Agricultural Short Course at Waukon, serving as director of that body. His own farm exemplifies the scientific principles of which he has made a close study, for it is one of the most productive and highly improved in this township and reflects everywhere his competent supervision and careful management. He has added to and remodeled the house, built a new barn and several outbuildings and steadily carried forward the work of development in an able and practical way.

It is not alone along agricultural lines, however, that Mr. Helming is widely and favorably known, for he is one of the leaders in republican politics in this state and has had a varied and important public career. Upon the republican ticket he was elected for six consecutive years assessor of Ludlow township and in 1912 was elected by a large majority to the state house of representatives. He has served with ability and distinction since that time and has left the impress of his work and personality upon a great deal of important legislation. He has served on numerous important committees, including those of school and textbooks, the Soldiers and Orphans’ Home, public charities, agriculture, the School for the Deaf and the committed on federal relations, these connection indicating something of the scope of his interest and the weight of his political influence.

In Richfield, Wisconsin, on the 12th of November, 1902, Mr. Helming was united in marriage to Miss Lena Whittenberger, who was born, reared and educated in that state. Mr. and Mrs. Helming have two children, Clara and Florence. The parents are members of the Ludlow Presbyterian church.

Mr. Helming is a man of varied interests but these all lie along lines of progress and improvement. He is a broad-mined man who places a correct valuation upon life and while in business affairs he has achieved a gratifying measure of prosperity, he has also been a force in the political development of the state, his activities in various fields proving of benefit to the community at large. He stands today among the men of marked ability and substantial worth in Allamakee county.

-source: Past & Present of Allamakee County; by Ellery M. Hancock; S. J. Clarke Pub. Co.; 1913
-transcribed by Diana Diedrich

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