IAGenWeb Project - Allamakee co.

Charles L. Keenan


Among the men widely known in Allamakee county as breeders of pure-blooded and high-grade cattle is Charles L. Keenan, who from his youth has been closely identified with this line of work and who is today the owner of the Maple Leaf Stock Farm of one hundred and fifty acres and of fine herds of shorthorn cattle, Poland China hogs and Percheron horses. A spirit of enterprise has distinguished all the activities of his career and has brought him today to a gratifying position in his chosen line. Mr. Keenan was born upon the farm which he now occupies on the 27th of February, 1871, and is a son of Patrick Keenan, one of the first settlers in Jefferson township, having located here in 1847. The father purchased wild land, securing over five hundred acres, and this he cleared of timber, breaking the soil and improving the place with substantial buildings. He became in the course of years one of the well known men in Allamakee county, continuing to make his home in this part of Iowa until his death, which occurred March 14, 1878. In 1854, in Allamakee county, he married Miss Catherine Scanlan, who survived him for a number of years, carrying on the operation of the homestead and becoming the owner of one of the first herds of shorthorn cattle in Allamakee county. She passed away September 14, 1909.

Charles L. Keenan, who is one of a family of nine sons and three daughters, was reared upon the family homestead in Jefferson township and acquired his primary education in the country schools. He supplemented this by a business course at La Crosse Business College and then returned to the farm which he aided his mother in operating for a number of years, continuing as assistant until the estate was settled, when he succeeded to the portion of the farm which contained the homestead. From his youth up he was closely connected with stock-raising interests here and is today one of the leading stock men in the township. His stock is all high grade and his herd of cattle varies from ten to forty animals. In business circles Mr. Keenan is known as one of the promoters of the Farmers Cooperative Stock & Produce Company of Allamakee county and also has stock in the Paint Creek Telephone Company.

In Jefferson township, on the 25th of June, 1901, Mr. Keenan was united in marriage to Miss Katherine Ryan, who was born and reared in Jefferson township, a daughter of John S. Ryan, who is numbered among the first settlers in this locality. A more extended mention of his life is found elsewhere in this work. Mr. and Mrs. Keenan have become the parents of four children, John Cyril, Mary Lorraine, Katherine Estella and Cecilia. The family are members of the Waukon Catholic church and Mr. Keenan belongs to the Catholic Order of Foresters and the Knights of Columbus. He is numbered among the successful farmers and stock-raisers of Allamakee county and among its most progressive business men, his success coming as the direct result of the sound judgment and keen discrimination which have distinguished the activities of his entire career.

-transcribed by Linda Earnheart

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