Allamakee co. IAGenWeb


Past & Present of Allamakee County, 1913


Grand Army of the Republic - Spanish War Veterans - Women's Clubs
Old Company "I" - Captain Nichols - Fraternal Societies


On the 30th day of May, 1883, after Memorial Day exercises, a meeting of veterans from all over the county was held in Waukon, preliminary to the organization of a Grand Army Post. G. M. Dean was chairman of the meeting, and T. C. Medary secretary. On motion of D. W. Reed, F. H. Robbins was appointed a committee to arrange for a mustering officer, and the time of assembling.

On the 23d of June following, the veterans of Allamakee county to the number of eighty-nine, assembled at Barnard Hall in Waukon, and Comrade Herman Karberg of Hyde Clark Post, Dubuque, proceeded to muster in the following named charter members, under special order No. 199, from department headquarters of Iowa: Geo. W. Sherman, John Toole, E. B. Raymond, D. W. Reed, John W. Pratt, Wm. T. Stull, T. W. David, Geo. D. Greenleaf, Thos. B. Wiley, Isaac Mickey, David Hawthorne, John Dowling, Thomas Dowling, John Sines, Robert Boyce, T. J. Hawthorne, Frank Klees, Julius Nelson, Geo. O. Potter, John Griffin, Wm. Niblock, Wm. J. Miller, James B. Rudd, D. W. Douglass, John H. Hale, Geo. Robertson, Leroy Butts, E. W. Pratt, Peter Griffin, John F. Pitt, Martin Hoffman, O. A. Ross, S. L. Rush, Daniel Ryan, T. J. Hancock, Wm. Raymond, John D. Nesmeier, Henry Allpress, L. Ferris, Jas. A. Langford, John Hartley, A. R. Prescott, John T. Robinson, E. A. Swan, c. T. Granger, Heber, Robinson, F. H. Robbins, T. C. Medary, Geo. M. Dear, Jas. M. Barr, A. B. Conner, Cornelius Ward, Henry P. Lane, Isaac Woodmansee, E. B. Bascom, M. G. Wood, Oscar Collins, John A. Decker, John Crawford, Wm. H. Crouch, M. F. Sanner, Frank Van Amberg, Robert Smith, Henry Graham, C. B. Jordon, James McClintock, James Ruth, L. W. Irwin, Hans Simonson, Geo. Schroda, A. M. May, John A. Rupp, J. J. Jennewine, Nick Betzinger, Wm. H. Graham, Archibald McClintock, B. G. Stanley, James Briar, Geo. W. Miller, Alonzo Thornton, Levi N. Green, P. I. Pierce, C. A. Robey, Geo. P. Bellows, John W. Barlow, A. F. Loomis, John Pixler, Hugh McCabe, Robert Wampler.

Immediately after muster the following officers were elected and installed: Post Commander, D. W. Reed; Senior Vice Commander, J. W. Pratt; Junior Vice Commander, James Ruth; Officer of the Day, T. C. Medary, Surgeon, A. R. Prescott; Adjutant, E. W. Pratt; Quartermaster, F. H. Robbins; Chaplain Rev. Robert Smith; Officer of the Guard, A. B. Conner; Sergeant Major, J. B. Reid; Quartermaster Sergeant, Henry P. Lane.

The name chosen for the Post was Nathaniel P. Baker, the adjutant general of Iowa in the dark days of the rebellion; but upon ascertaining that the name was already adopted by the Post at Clinton, on the 21st day of July this post unanimously adopted the name of John J. Stillman, the first man from Allamakee county killed in action at Fort Donelson, and it has since been known as John J. Stillman Post, No. 194.

From the time of organization the principal officers, commander and adjutant, have been as follows:

Commander: D. W. Reed, 1883-88; F. H. Robbins, 1889-97; R. Wampler, 1898-1903; G. M. Dean, 1904-05; F. H. Robbins, 1906; R. Wampler, 1907-10; G. P. Bellows, 1911-13.

Adjutant: E. W. Pratt, 1883; N. H. Pratt, 1884; T. C. Medary, 1885-86; A. M. May, 1887-1913.

The present officers are: Post Commander, G. P. Bellows; Senior Vice Commander, James Briar; Junior Vice Commander, John F. Pitt; Adjutant, A. M. May; Quartermaster, Geo. W. Sherman; Surgeon, George Cummins; Chaplain, R. Wampler; Officer of the Day, D. W. Douglass; Patriotic Instructor, A. M. May; Officer of the Guard, George Schroda; Sergeant Major, Hugh McCabe; Quartermaster Sergeant, Jacob Minchk; Delegate to State Encampment-A. M. May.

Waukon Relief Corps, John J. Stillman, No. 123, organized August 7,1887, with the following officers: Mrs. E. E. Stevens, president; Anna Granger, senior vice president; Jane Dean, Junior vice president; Henrietta Hale, secretary; Ellen Reed, treasurer, Margaret David, chaplain; Adelia Conner, conductor; Cynthia Robinson, guard. The present officers are:

Mrs. Althea Robbins, president; Alice Daulton, senior vice president; Dina Reynolds, junior vice president; Phoebe Walker, secretary; M. A. R. Bellows, treasurer; Eliza Colgrove, chaplain; Mary Passmore, conductor; Sarah Briar, guard.

Albert M. Stewart Camp, No. 6, Department of Iowa, United Spanish War Veterans, was organized and mustered in May 30, 1908, under charter dated May - , 1908, with the following charter members: R. A. Nichols, Wm. S. Hart, J. H. Hager, Otto Gulrud, M. S. Jones, John Colsch, C. H. Stilwell, Calvin St. Stillwell, C. M. Powell, C. H. Dean, J. E. O’Brien, B. W. Ratcliffe, R. J. Pratt, Chas. Colsch, Nicholas Colsch, Jr. Robt. E. Hughes.

Officers elected at first meeting as follows: Camp Commander, R. A. Nichols; Senior Vice Commander, J. H. Hager; Junior Vice Commander, Otto Gulrud; Adjutant, Calvin S. Stilwell, quartermaster, Claude H. Dean; Officer of the Day, M. Scott Jones; Officer of the Guard, John Colsch.

Present officers of the Camp: Camp Commander, John E. O’Brien; Senior Vice Commander, Calvin S. Stilwell; Junior Vice Commander, A. W. Douglas; Adjutant, M. Scott Jones; quartermaster, Nicholas Colsch, Jr.; Officer of the Day, R. A. Nichols; Officer of the Guard, R. J. Pratt.

Camp was named in honor of Sergt. A. M. Stewart, the first typhoid victim of Company I, Forty-ninth Iowa Volunteer Infantry, who died at Jacksonville, Florida, August 25, 1898.

Members of the camp include veterans of the Spanish-American war and Philippines insurrection, who saw service in Cuba and the Philippines, on land and water.

All honorably discharged soldiers and sailors of the Spanish-American war, Philippine insurrection, Boxer trouble, serving from 1898 to 1900 in the service of the United States are eligible to membership.

WOMEN’S CLUBS (pg 378)
“The Woman’s Literary Club” of Waukon was organized in February, 1884, through the efforts of Mrs. W. C. Earle. It is said to be the second oldest of the women’s clubs in the State of Iowa. At first the object of the society was largely for social intercourse, although the first hour was spent in reading Shakespeare, and the second in some work selected either by the club or reader; but as time rolled on it seemed to its members that more systematic work should be done. The subject was discussed pro and con, for some time, and in the summer of 1897, it was decided to plan a course of study for the coming year; accordingly Mrs. A. M. May, who was then president, appointed a committee to lay out the work. The course decided upon was a study of the United States, by states, giving a short history of each, its prominent cities, statesmen, authors, etc. Since that time each year has had its apportioned work. Friday has been the meeting day of this club; the first Friday in February is set apart as an anniversary, and the last Friday in June, closing the year’s work, as guest day. The present officers of the club are: President, Mrs. Jackson Smith; Vice President, Mrs. W. T. Gilchrist; Secretary, Mrs. Charlotte Hancock; Treasurer, Mrs. Phoebe Walker.

The next oldest club in Waukon is the “Nineteenth Century Club,” and numerous others followed in later years, as the “New Century,” the “Thursday Club,” the “Browning,” the “Keane Circle,” and others; all we believe uniting in various enterprises for the public welfare, instruction and amusement. Among such enterprises may be mentioned the lecture courses in winter and the Chautauqua in summer, a well as the public library elsewhere noticed.

OLD COMPANY “I” (pg 378-385)
The Waukon military company ha a long and honorable record. It was mustered in as Company F. Fourth Regiment Iowa National Guards, by Capt. E. B. Bascom, of Lansing, May 16, 1878, with a full complement of sixty-four enlisted men, besides the commissioned officers, who were elected as follows: Captain, D. W. Reed; First Lieutenant, J. W. Pratt; Second Lieutenant, T. G. Orr. In July, the company was transferred to the Ninth regiment, becoming Company E. August 17, Captain Reed was elected major of the regiment. About September 20th the company received their arms and accoutrements. In October, Earle’s hall was leased for an armory. November 7th, Second Sergeant A. J. Rodgers was elected captain, and Fifty Sergeant A. T. Stillman, first lieutenant to fill the vacancy caused by resignation of J. W. Pratt. May 2, 1879, Orderly Sergeant Dell J. Clark was elected second lieutenant to fill vacancy caused by Lieutenant Orr’s resignation, and A H. Peck was elected orderly. In July the company was retransferred to the Fourth Regiment, becoming Company I. In August, uniforms were purchased, and September 16th to 19th the company participated in regimental encampment at Independence. May 7, 1880, Third Sergt. J. B. Reid was elected second lieutenant in place of D. J. Clark, resigned. October 11th or 15th the company was in regimental camp at Postville. In August, 1881, Captain Rodgers was elected major of the regiment, and therm of service having expired, it was a question whether or not the company should reorganize. On the 8th the company decided by vote to do so, and on the 17th Sergt. A. G. Stewart was elected captain. The company attended the state encampment at Des Moines, second week in October. Lieutenant Stillman’s commission having expired, and he desiring to retire, Second Lieut. J. B. Reid was elected his successor November 25th, the Sergt. E. B. Gibbs elected to the second lieutenancy. In June, 1882, with these officers, and E. W. Pratt as first sergeant, the company attended brigade encampment at Waterloo, where they received the first prize ($100) for the best drilled company in the Second Brigade, comprising three regiments. In September, Barnard Hall was rented for an armory, and that month the company, by special invitation, attended the grand military encampment at Dubuque, where they acquitted themselves creditably. The company held the championship for target practice for several years after this.

In May, 1883, the company attended a National Guard encampment at Nashville, Tennessee, where they met a vast concourse of people as well as most of the celebrated companies of state troops in the United States. “Company I” did not enter the prize drill at this place. It went at the special request of the commander of that great camp-“Camp Duncan,” Brig. Gen. C. S. Bentley of Iowa commanding-as “Headquarters Guard, and escort to the commanding general.” The company received the highest praise alike from United States and state officers for general efficiency and soldierly bearing as well as discipline and good conduct.

The roster of the company attending this camp was as follows: Capt. A. G. Stewart; First Lieut., J. B. Reid; Second Lieut., E. B. Gibbs; First Sergt., E. W. Pratt; Second Sergt. R. A. Nichols; Third Sergt., E. M. Hancock; Fourth Sergt., J. E. Duffy; Fifth Sergt., J. C. Lewis.

Corporals, A. O. Sagen, L. A. Howe, F. A. Wigton, J. B. Hays.

Privates, J. A. Brawford, James Berry, F. Berrier, J. Cummins, J. B. Dowling, Herman Groeling, G. L. Hubbell, Daniel Hanley, B. H. Hall, E. P. Jordan, S. W. Kellogg, F. E. Nichols, T. F. O’Brien, J. L. Pratt, Allison Peck, A. H. Ross, Mark Snyder, R. I . Steele, E. R. Spencer; and Quartermaster Sergt. G. C. Hemenway, A. C. Hagemeier, assistant.

The company kept up its continuous record as one of the best companies of the state in all respects for nearly fifteen years after this time (1883). In 1886 Captain Stewart, who had commanded the company since 1881, was elected colonel of the Fourth Regiment. He occupied this position for a term (five years), and was reelected and recommissioned for another five years, but on the reorganization of the guard in 1892 resigned and retired from the active service, being given, by special orders from the military department, the full rank of colonel.

Meantime Company I had gone along in its stead and reliable way, always doing its duty faithfully and well and attending the annual encampments with a full complement of men. On the promotion of Captain Stewart to the colonelcy in 1886, Lieut. E. G. Gibbs became captain and served through one encampment. He then resigned to take the adjutancy of the regiment, which he held for several years. On his leaving the captaincy Lieut. R. A. Nichols became captain and held the company up to its old standard of efficiency until he resigned in June, 1893. Previous to this, in October, 1892, the company had the honor of participating in the military part of the program of the dedication of the World’s Columbian Exposition, at Chicago, for several days, where they encamped in the Great Agricultural Building. They were assigned a position in the military review at Washington Park, October 21st, assisted at the dedication of the Iowa Building on Saturday, October 22d, and returned home on the following Monday.

Captain Nichols was succeeded by First Lieut. Henry V. Duffy, who was commissioned captain July 1, 1893, and commanded the company untilhis tragic death in 1895, when Lieut. Wm. S. Hart became captain.

In the early summer of 1897 came an order from headquarters disbanding the company, on account of some lack of interest, and strife on the part of some larger towns more centrally located to supplant the village company from the extreme northeast corner of the state. Efforts were immediately made for its reinstatement which proved successful, and in one month from the date of the order of disbandment the company was fully reorganized and mustered in. Colonel Stewart and Captain Nichols, who had both been on the retired list for years, were elected unanimously as captain and first lieutenant, consenting to serve for a short time only until the company was well on its feet again.

Before the following encampment at Waterloo was well over there were strong prospects of a war with Spain over the situation in Cuba. It did not come until the following spring, however. Finally when war was declared and the call for troops made by President McKinley, Captain Stewart was away at the bedside of a dying brother in the southern part of the state. Lieutenant Nichols, however, promptly took command and in twenty-four hours after the order to rendezvous at Des Moines was received the company had started. To then lieutenant Nichols is due great credit for his promptness and efficiency in equipping, so far as might be, and getting out the company, not only with its full complement of forth enlisted men, but a number more to take the place of any who might “flunk.:

Under the call of President McKinley of April 25, 1898 the company started on the 26th for Camp McKinley, Des Moines, where they were mustered into the United States service on June 2d as Company I, Forty-ninth because it was the fifty-ninth consecutive regiment of infantry furnished by the state for national service.

Company I at this time was uniquely officered. Captain Stewart had enlisted as a private in 1878, and risen to the rank of colonel. First Lieutenant Nichols had also enlisted as a private in 1878, served through all the grades, and as captain for about eight years. Second Lieutenant Hart had joined the company as private in 1889, had become captain in 1895, and reenlisted as private upon the reorganization of the company in 1897, but was soon after elected lieutenant. All had assumed their lower rank through devotion to the company and the cause in which it was embarked.

The officers and men of Company I, Forty-ninth Regiment, who were enrolled from Allamakee county, were as follows:
Capt. Albert G. Stewart; First Lieut., Ross A. Nichols; Second Lieut, William S. Hart; First Sergt., Nicholas Colsch, Jr.; Quartermaster Sergt., Fred G. Stilwell, Discharged September 6, 1898, on account of disability.

Duty Sergts: Albert M. Stewart, died August 26, 1898, at Jacksonville, Florida; John H. Hager, discharged before muster out of company; James E. Cummens; Benjamin L. Martindale, promoted first sergeant.

Corporals: Fred C. Robey, promoted sergeant, September 1, 1898; Daniel Regan, promoted sergeant; Alexander W. Douglass; Edmund Roche; John L. Casey, died at general hospital, McPherson, George; William J. Thill; Otto L. Gullrud; Cornelius H. Stilwell, discharged before muster out of company; Allen B. Boomer, promoted quartermaster sergeant, September 6, 1898; John Colsch discharged before muster out of company; Frank M. Rupp, died September 15, 1898, at Waukon; Stephen E. Barron.

Musicians: Benjamin A. Steffen, James E. Briar; Artificer, Royal E. Pratt; Wagoner, Emery E. Bandle.

Privates: Barron, Mark S.; Coffrain, Selwyn P.; Carpenter, Albert J.; Colsch, Chas. (Discharged before muster out of company), Dean, Claude H.; Fiete, Albert F.; Geesey, Chas. A. (Discharge by favor); Green, Fred H.; Hagen, Albert G.; Hanson, Floyd; Irvin, Chas. J.; Jackson, Carlton A.; Johnson, Carl A. (Corporal Company “A.” Thirty-eight U. S. V., September, 1899, to June 30, 1901); Kean, John H.; Klein, Joseph J. (Promoted corporal); McGourty, John (promoted corporal); Mullally, James B.; Nierling, William F.; Phipps, Harry V.; Regan, Chas. (Promoted corporal); Stilwell, Calvin S.; Stone, George E.; Trumbull, Frank C. (Died September 23, 1898, at ‘Waukon); White, William H.’ Wigton, Howard F.; Wigton, Chester J.; Williams, William E. (Promoted cook corporal, September 1, 1898).

One June 14, 1898, the company went into the great camp “Cuba Libre” at Jacksonville, Florida. The transition was very great. It had been a very cold spring and while at Camp McKinley there was scarcely a day, and never a night, but that an overcoat was necessary to comfort while out, except. Of course, when drilling or exercising actively. When they landed at Jacksonville it was simply hot and continued so almost every hour of the day and night while they remained there.

On the 4th of July the glorious news of the destruction of Cervera’s fleet off Santiago caused great rejoicing in camp over the success of the navy; but it was somewhat tempered by the feeling it brought to our belligerent boys that they might lose the chance to have a “scrap” with the Spaniards after all. On that day the rains commenced. In spite of the rainy weather and poor food badly cooked, our men remained up to about the middle of August, comparatively will. No serious cases of typhoid had developed in Company I until August 16th, when Sergt. Bert Stewart came in from drill stricken. He grew rapidly worse and on the removal of the company to an new camp was taken to the second division hospital, where on the 25th he died. It was the first case in the company and the second death in the regiment, and produced a profound impression. His remains were returned to Waukon, accompanied by his father Captain Stewart, and buried in Oakland cemetery.

On the 5th of September Tommy Wilson died. Frank Rupp, no doubt already permeated with the disease, left camp on furlough to escort home the remains of Wilson, and on the 15th died at his home near Waukon, and so it went. When Captain Stewart returned to the camp, September 14th; nearly if not quite, half of the company were sick of hospitals or on sick furlough. There were days when after the necessary guards were detailed, there were but six men left able to bear arms for even drill or show purposes out of the 106 mustered on August 1st.

John Casey had safety passed through all dangers and escaped an sickness until the regiment was moved to Savannah, Georgia, when he was taken with the dread disease and left there for the hospital when the company went to Cuba. He was soon thereafter taken to Atlanta, where lingering until after the regiment was mustered out, he finally yielded to the disease and its complication. His body was brought to his old home and consigned to its last resting place in Mount Olivet cemetery by his comrades.

On the 27th of October the command was moved to Savannah, Geogia. All went well; the men continued to recuperate, and when about December 19th or 20th orders were received, about eighty-five men went aboard the transport and were off for Cuba. On arriving at Havana they went into camp at Camp Columbia, situated on high ground along the coast. The Forty-ninth regiment being camped near the little city of Marianao about twelve miles from the center of Havana. Here the company in the main, enjoyed life and were very healthy.

Company I took part in the great parade on January 1, 1899, when the Spanish flag went down forever in the “Gem of the Antilles” and the Stars and Stripes rose in its place amidst the cheering of the thousands of American soldiers and Cuban patriots.

Later the company and regiment, indeed the entire brigade, took a “hike” towards the south part of the Island from which they returned in about ten days, having seen much that was new to them and having enjoyed the trip immensely.

In April the company with half the regiment shipped again from Havana for Savannah, where, on May 13, 1899, eighty-one as good soldiers as Uncle Sam ever had were mustered out and honorably discharged from service. On the 16th of May, nearly all the members of the company reached Waukon, after a little over a year’s absence.

The company received, during its service, two splendid flags. A fine, small, silk one from Miss Anna Larrabee, daughter of ex-Governor Larrabee, and the other a fine, large one presented by Hon. Charles T. Granger, of Waukon, who at the time was chief justice of the Supreme court of Iowa. These flags are not held by Camp Albert M. Stewart of the Spanish-American War Veterans, located at Waukon.

Since the Spanish war the history of Company I has of course been less eventful. It was reorganized, and has been kept up in excellent condition by its present efficient commander, Capt. Nicholas Colsch, J., who succeeded to the command and whose first commission dated from February 8, 1900 thus serving now for over thirteen years.

The other commissioned officers have been: First Lieutenant, Alex W. Douglass, 1900 to 1904; a. S. Bowen, 1904 to 1907, resigned to accept commission as surgeon in the United States regular army; Jas. L. Carlson, 1907 to 1910; succeeded by John P. King, May 7, 1910, present incumbent. Second Lieutenant, John Colsch, 1900 to 1905; Herman P. Johnson, 1905 to present date. By reorganization in 1903 the 49th regiment became the 53d.

Company I in these “piping times of peace” has become distinguished for the record of its marksmen, who hold some valuable trophies of their skill at the national contests at Camp Perry, Ohio, and Sea Girt, N. J. Sergt. Chas. M. King holds the medal for highest individual score at one of these contests, but the details of these victories cannot be given here. Waukon is proud of Company I, and confident the boys will ever by found ready for any emergency.

CAPTAIN NICHOLS (pg 385-386)
It is fitting to here recount the subsequent military services of one of the original members of Company “I” who was the longest time in its membership, and for many years its commander. One of the first to enroll upon its organization in May, 1878, R. A. Nichols served as private, sergeant, first lieutenant and captain; and, as before narrated, as first lieutenant through the Spanish war, receiving an honorable discharge in May, 1899.

In March, 1899, Congress passed a bill authorizing the president to raise a force of United States Volunteers for the suppression of the Philippine insurrection. Under this act President McKinley commissioned Lieutenant Nichols as captain and assigned him to the Thirty-eight Regiment, then being organized at Jefferson Barracks, St. Louis, Missouri. He reported there to Col. Geo. S. Anderson, commanding the regiment, September 11, 1899, and was assigned to the command of Company “B.” After about six weeks spent in drilling and organization, the regiment was started for the Philippines, by was of San Francisco, arriving at Manila November 27, 1899.

January 1, 1900, they were sent with Gen. Lloyd Wheaton on an expedition against southern Luzon. They took part in fighting at Talisay, Lipa, Tiesan, and Batangas. Here the Thirty-eighth was divided into several detachments to garrison small towns. The First battalion, to which Captain Nichols’ company belonged, was stationed at Batangas, a town on the bay of the same name and about one hundred miles south of Manila. Their duty was to pursue, destroy, and capture the numerous bands of insurgents that infested that region. Here his command and numerous fight with the insurgents, and a large number of prisoners and arms were captured. One of the severest of these fights was at San Maguil, a small place in the mountains, about six miles south of Batangas. While there with about fifty of his company he was attacked by a force of natives numbering between four and five hundred. After a fight lasting a couple of hours they were driven off with a loss of forth killed and wounded and sixteen prisoners. He had one man severely wounded. For his conduct in this action Colonel Anderson recommended Captain Nichols for a brevet.

September 28, 1900, Company “B” accompanied Colonel Anderson and Company “D” to the island of Maranduqua for the purpose of rescuing Captain Shields, Twenty-ninth Regiment, and fifty-two of his men who had been captured by the insurgents. After a month’s hard work the insurgent commander was forced to give up the prisoners.

November 25th the regiment was sent to Iloilo, on the island of Panay. Captain Nichols was here sent, in command, with his company and another company to Calinog, about fifty miles northeast of Iloilo, to clean out insurgents and ladrones. Not much fighting was had here. The first night the command arrived at Calinog the insurgents fired a few volleys at the town, killing one man in Company B. This was the only man killed in the company during its service. A large number of arms were surrendered here, and several noted ladrones captured. One of these was afterwards hung.

The term of service of the regiment having nearly expired, it was shipped back to the United States, Captain Nichols’ company being sent as a guard on a freight transport. They arrived at Portland, Oregon, June 29, 1901, and were immediately sent to San Francisco, where they were mustered out July 5, 1901. His company lost only four men by death during their term, one man killed, one drowned, and two from sickness. Captain Nichols was in command of the First battalion for four months, during Major Muir’s absence in China, in the Boxer rebellion.


Waukon Lodge-No. 154, A. F. & A. M., was the third in order to be instituted in Allamakee county, its dispensation dating January 5, 1860, and its charter June 6th following. It was preceded by Parvin lodge at Rossville, and Evergreen lodge at Lansing. The Rossville lodge surrendered its charter in 1859, after an ineffectual endeavor to transfer the lodge to Waukon, in a previous year, which if it had been accomplished would have preserved it as the now oldest lodge in this region.

The charter members of this lodge were: T. H. Barnes, R. K. Hall, L. W. Hersey, g. M. Dean, J. C. Smith, A. A. Sturdevant, W. W. Hungerford, Jno. T. Clark; I. H. Hedge, L. T. Woodcock, Scott Shattuck, J. C. Barlett, Alfred Pardee, G. C. Shattuck, C. O. Thompson; S. S., S. N. Bailey; J. S. , Samuel Hamler; Tyler, A. A. Sturdevant.

Waukon lodge has never owned a house of its own, but has occupied only three location since its organization, viz: the first was in the second story of a frame building on the site now occupied by the First Nation Bank; second, dating from January 15, 1870, second story of the Adams & Hale brick building erected in 1869, being the east part of the Hale & Sons Main street front; and third, since the fall of 1894 in its present location, second story of the Dillenberg block on the east side of Allamakee street, south part.

For many years it was customary for this lodge to have an annual banquet or festival in the latter part of winter, about the time of Washington’s birthday, sometimes quite elaborate affairs, and always of the most sociable character. Often most of the day would be spent in social intercourse, and in the conferring of side degrees. After a regular Eastern Star Lodge was, instituted these banquets were less frequent, but a notable occasion of this character was the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the lodge, June 7, 1910. For this event an invitation was extended to brethren of the order at Postville, Monona, Lansing, Frankville, Decorah, Elkader, Guttenberg, and McGregor, and Bros. E. B. Gibbs, Burt Hendrick, .B. W. Swebakken, M. W. Eaton and J. C. Crawford were appointed by a committee of arrangements. The weather proved fine, and the result was the largest gathering of the Masonic fraternity in Waukon for many years, and a very enjoyable and instructive occasion.

Masonic honors have been conferred upon members of the Waukon lodge as follows:
Bros. L. W. Hersey was appointed J. G. Steward at the grand lodge of 1865, and also served as a member of the committee on chartered lodges at the grand lodge of 1866.

Bro. D. W. Reed was appointed J. G. Steward at the grand lodge of 1876.

Bro. H. H. Stilwell was appointed a member of the committee on grand master’s address at the grand lodge of 1885.

Bro. T. E. Fleming was appointed grand chaplain at the grand lodge of 1893.

Bro. J. C. Crawford served as grand marshal at the grand lodge of 1894. He was chairman of the committee on lodges under dispensation at the grand lodge of 1899. He also served as deputy grand master of the grand lodge of 1902.

Bro. Charles T. Granger has served the grand lodge in so many different ways, and for such a long time, that a complete record can not well be given here, and the following brief extract from a history of the Iowa grand lodge must suffice:
“Among the many distinguished men who have been closely identified with the Masonic institution in Iowa none has been more devoted or has contributed more time and wealth of intellect than Charles Trumbull Granger.

“Judge Granger with his large experience in the practice of law, and upon the bench, and with a naturally constructive mind, has given much thought towards the perfecting of the Code of Laws of the Grand Lodge of Iowa, which today stands as a monument to his ability as a jurist and scholar, so complete in all its provision that rarely any question arises that is not readily disposed of by reference to it. In addition to this, his long service as a member of the board of Custodians of the Work has accomplished much towards securing a uniformity of the ritualistic work of this grand jurisdiction. * * *

“Brother Granger was made a Mason in Antioch lodge, at Antioch, Illinois, in February, 1860, and affiliated with Waukon Lodge No. 154, in 1866, of which he is still a member. He has been worshipful master of that lodge a number of years at one time and another. He was made a Royal Arch Mason in Markwell Chapter No. 30, of Lansing, now located at Waukon, April, 1869, and still holds his membership in that chapter. He was created a Knight Templar in Beauseant Commandery No. 12, Decorah, in 1883, of which body he is still a member.

“He was elected Senior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge of Iowa in 1882, and was elected Grand Master of Masons in Iowa in 1884, and reelected in 1885. He succeeded Past Grand Master E. A. Guilbert upon the Board of Custodians in 1887, and has served continuously upon that board for a period of twenty-five years. He is now chairman of the Committee of Masonic Jurisprudence, which position he has held for many years.

“While Brother Granger is deeply interested in all of the branches of Masonry, his great work has been done in Symbolic Masonry, * * * bringing to this work a mind ripe with experience and education which the entire fraternity were quick to recognize and appreciate. Beloved by all he today enjoys the warm friendship and esteem of the entire Masonic fraternity of Iowa to a greater degree than any other Mason in the state, yet he ever remains the same modest, unassuming gentleman, regardless of the high honors that have been bestowed upon him.”

Markwell Chapter - No. 30, Royal Arch Masons, was instituted at Lansing, in October, 1865, and charter granted June 4, 1866. The first officers were, H. H. Hemenway, high priest; S H. Kinne, king; J. W. Thomas, scribe. It was removed to Waukon in 1882. E. D. Purdy has been secretary since February, 1877.

Golden Rod Chapter - No. 176, Order of Eastern Star, was chartered October 23, 1895, with the following officers: Mrs. J. C. Crawford, worthy matron; Mrs. Jennie Hubbell, associate matron; H. H. Stillwell, worthy patron. At present (1912) they consist of: Mrs. Anna Cooley, worthy matron; Mrs. Margaret Hendrick, associate matron; E. B. Gibbs, worthy patron, Miss Blanche Dial, secretary; Miss Jessie Lewis, treasurer.

The oldest member of Waukon Masonic lodge is Bro. Geo. W. Taylor, who joined by demit June 18, 1861. The principal officers at present are: Burt Hendrick, W. M.; Guy W. Eaton, S. W.; Calvin Stilwell, J. W.; L. A. Howe, treasurer; N. N. Crawford, secretary.

Jewell Camp - No. 327, Modern Woodmen of America, was instituted April 5, 1887, at Waukon, taking its name from B. Wood Jewell, deputy head consul, who was here of effect the organization. The camp was composed of the following twenty-eight charter members: Armstrong, L.; Bearce, L. M.; Boomer, J. H.; Conner, A. B.; Cabanis, J. L.; Carroll, T. L.; Dayton, J. F.; Dayton, Henry; Goodrich, J. W.; Gilchrist, W. T.; Goodykoontz, A. E.; Haines, G. W.; Hancock, E. M.; Johnson, J. K,; Jones, J. B.; Lewis, J. C.; Manning, G. R.; Medary, T. C.; Medary, G. C.; Minert, J. B.; Nichols, F. E.; Olson, O. H; Pleimling, Nic.; Ratcliffe, J. G.; Raymond, J. P.; Reed, D. W.; Siekemeier, S. A.; Stilwell, H. H.

Officers were elected as follows: Venerable Consul, H. H. Stilwell; Adviser, T. L. Carroll; Clerk, J. L. Cabanis. (Soon after removed from Waukon and F. E. Nichols was clerk until January, 1891.) Banker, J. H. Boomer; Escort, J. B. Jones; Watchman, G. W. Haines; Sentry, F. E. Nichols; Managers, D. W. Reed, A. B. Conner, and J. F. Dayton.

The first death in the camp was that of Neighbor A. E. Goodykoontz, November 18, 1888.

For a number of years the order languished, after its first vigorous start, because of a division in the Head Camp. In 1891 Jewell Camp had dwindled to twenty-one members. A faithful few, including Consul C. S. Stilwell, Adviser W. D. Bean, Clerk E. M. Hancock, and Bankers Halvor Simonsen and G. W. Haines, with Neighbors Goodrich and Jones, held occasional meetings in Neighbor Stilwell’s office. But soon after the order took on new life, and by ‘95 or ‘96 a steady increase had set in which continued until in 1912 Jewell Camp had attained a membership of 220.

The following have served as Venerable Consul: H. H. Stilwell, C. S. Stilwell, 1888-92; W. D. Bean, 1893; J. B. Jones, 1894; J. W. Goodrich 1895-97; J. B. Jones, 1898-1900; Otto Hagen, 1901; W. S. Hart, 1902; J. B. Jones, 1903; Dan Williams, 1904; G. W. Haines, 1905-07; James Collins, 1908-09; G. W. Haines, 1910-13.

Clerk: F. E. Nichols, 1887-1890; E. M. Hancock, 1891-98; E. W. Goodykoontz, 1899-1904; L. F. Seelig, 1905-12; F. E. Kelley, 1913

Present officers are: Venerable Consul, G. W. Haines; Worthy Adviser, F. H. Nagel; Excellent Banker, W. H. Ebendorf; Clerk, F. E. Kelley; Escort, Edgar Morstad; Watchman, Elmer Heitman; Sentry, B. Langheim; Manager, Thos. Hartley, Daniel Williams, Bert Klinkel.

Little Gem Camp - No. 1314, Royal Neighbors, auxiliary to the M. W. Of A., was organized January 18, 1899, with 22 charter, members and the following officers: Oracle, Olive Henthorne; Vice Oracle, Ada Barton Jones; Recorder, Addie Thill, Receiver, Nancy Eaton; Marshall, Harriet Dowling, Chancellor, Catherine Steele; Inner Sentinel, Angelia Letourneau; Outer Sentinel, Elsie Ashbacher; Managers, John Rice, Lizzie Fisher, and Celia Leefeldt; Physicians, P. H. Letourneau, W. T. Gilchrist.

The present officers are: Oracle, Ada Barton Jones; Vice Oracle, Belle Eldridge; Recorder, Maude Kelley; Receiver, Louise Carter; Marshall, Ellen Ronayne; Chancellor, Ida Entwisle; Inside Sentinel, Elsie Arnold; Outside Sentinel Nancy Eaton; Managers, Mary Winter, Anna Ebendorf, and Dema Carpenter; Physician, W. T. Gilchrist.

Bayard Lodge - No. 121 Knights of Pythias, was organized in January, 1884, and elected provisional officers as follows: Past Chancellor, Levi Hubbell; Chancellor, A. G. Stewart; Vice Chancellor, J. F. Dayton; Prelate, D. H. Bowen; M. Of F., Geo. Canfield; M. Of Ex., Geo. J. Mauch; K. Of R. & S., C. A. Pratt; M. At A., R. A. Nichols; I. G., Geo. C. Medary; O. G., J. W. Goodrich; Trustees, J. P. Raymond, Jos. Heiser and J. B. Reid.

The charter of the lodge bears dated October 2, 1884, with the names of the eighteen charter members as follows: Levi Hubbell, A. G. Stewart, J. F. Dayton, D. H. Bowen, G. C. Medary, J. B. Reid, Andrew O. Sagen, J. Callender, J. H. Heiser, G. E. Canfield, Ross Nichols, F. E. Nichols, George Mauch, Peter Stevens, J. W. Goodrich, J. P. Raymond, H. O. Dayton, A. C. Hagemeier, and Deputy Rightmire as institution officer.

The present officers are: O. C., D. H. Bowen; C. C., W. H. Ebendorf; V. C., A. T. Nierling; P., E. A. Allanson; K. Of R. And S., C. L. Bearce; M. Of F., J. Ludeking; M. Of Ex., O. J. Hager; M. Of W., T. Hartley; M. At A., E. Schuckei; I. G., L. King; O. G., D. Feldstein.

The Pythian Sisters, Auxiliary, was instituted August 12, 1896, with the following charter members, viz: Ellen A. Earle, Ella Stevens, Anna B. Beeman, Jennie E. Hubbell, Emily H. Medary, Estelle Bigelow, Henrietta Hale, Mrs. C. M. Beeman, Hettie E. Bowen.

St. Patrick’s Court-No. 406, Catholic Order of Foresters, was organized March 15, 1894, by High Chief Ranger Jno. C. Schubert, of Chicago, and first officers were elected as follows: Chief Ranger, D. J. Murphy; Vice C. R., J. E. Duffy; R. S., J. H. Kelley; F. S., J. F. Dougherty; Med. Exam., Dr. J. W. Cain; Treas, H. O’Donnell; Trustees, J. F. Ronayne, J. F. Tracy, T. J. Collins.

The officers in 1913 are: Chief Ranger, Dan Williams, vice C. R., P. H. Quillin; R. S., M. E. Ronan; F. S., J. H. Kelley; Med. Exam., Dr. J. W. Cain. Treas., H. O’Donnell; Trustees, Joe Keiser, Roger Ryan, and Jno McCabe.

St. Anne’s Court - No 65, Women’s Catholic Order of Foresters, organized with thirty members on the 19th of March, 1896, and the following named officers elected: Chief Ranger, Mary R. Cain; Vice Chief Ranger, Mary A. Murray; Recording Sec., Mary A. Quinn; Financial Sec., Catherine Dougherty; Treas., Margaret Duffy.

The order has flourished, and the membership increased to 167. The officers now are: Chief Ranger, Mary R. Cain, Vice Chief Ranger, Ellen Ronayne; Rec. Sec., Mary Kelleher; Fin. Sec., Catherine Hall; Treas., Mary Ryan; Trustees, Mary E. O’Brien, Mary Keiser, and Mary Quam.

Knights of Columbus - St. Matthew Council No. 1570, was organized May 28, 1911, with seventy-four charter members. Its first officers were: Grand Knight, William S. Hart; Deputy G. K., E. H. Howes; Chancellor, J. M. Lee; Warden, Max Wittlinger; Advocate, James Collins; Treasurer, M. J. Buckley; Lecturer, John H. DeWild; Fin. Secretary, P. J. Regan; Rec. Sec., J. V. Ryan; I. G., John Wittlinger; O. G., Leonard O’Brien; Trustees, M. E. Ronan, T. J. McDermott, C. P. Nierling. The present officers are the same, except as follows: Fin. Sec., D. F. Dugan; Rec. Sec., P. E. O’Donnell; and I. G, Thos. E. Ryan.

That this society has flourished remarkably is indicated by its present membership of 285. It occupies very pleasant and commodious quarters on the second floor or the Cain block, including an assembly hall seating 600, lodge room, and club room with billiard room and reception parlors.

Modern Brotherhood - Waukon Lodge, No. 67. Modern Brotherhood of America, was instituted in 1898, its charter bearing date of June 30, and its principal officers: J. H. Smith, Pres; E. J. Hall, Sec. The lodge has grown to goodly proportions, now numbering 160 members, and has contributed to the alleviation of suffering and the promotion of pleasant social intercourse. The principal officers of the lodge are at present: President, Clara Raymond; Vice-Pres. Mary S. Beedy; Sec. And Treas., M. E. Ronan; Social Sec.- Chaplain, E. C. Ronan; Sentry, Sarah Mason; Trustees, G. W. Haines, Louise Hermanson, and L. A. Jones; Watchman, G. W. Bircher.

Iowa Legion of Honor - Diamond Lodge No. 39, I. L. H., was organized September 5, 1879, with the following officers; Geo. H. Bryant, Pres.; A. G. Stewart, Vice P.; A. J. Rodgers, Rec. Sec.; E. M. Hancock, Fin. Sec.; J. W. Pratt, Treas.; A. M. May, Chaplain; C. C. Banfill, Usher; Don. A. Hoag, Doorkeeper; A. K. Pratt, Sentinel; L. Burton, L. M. Bearce, and M. H. Pratt, trustees. Though small in numbers this lodge has kept up the work for thirty-four years, and has lost nine of its early membership by death, and their beneficiaries were duly paid, viz: A. E. Robbins, January 12, 1892; L. M. Getchell, October 30, 1896; John W. Pratt, August 21, 1897; H. O. Dayton, January 24, 1901; M. H. Pratt, January 12, 1900; L. M. Bearce, July 12, 1903; C. O. Howard, September 7, 1904; Conrad Helming, January 16, 1906; F. H. Robbins, December 7, 1908.

The principal officers now are: J. B. Jones, President; A. M. May, Secretary; and Geo. H. Bryant, Treasurer.

Brotherhood of American Yeomen - Alla Tent, No. 51, B. A. Y., came into existence February 26, 1895, with an original member ship of about twenty, and started on its useful career with the following officers, viz: Sir Knight P. Com. S. J. Beddow; Com., S. M. Taylor ; Lt. Com., F. F. Simonsen; Fin. Keeper, w. E. Beddow; Rec..K, E. F. Medary; Chaplain, L. Bigelow; Sergt., H. Simonsen; Physician, D. H. Bowen; M. At Arms, H. Sivesend; 1st M. Of Guard, J. P. Dahl; 2d M. Of Guard, Chris Oleson; Sentinel, Roy Pratt; Picket, Fred Paulson.

The present Commander is J. M. Frederick; and Record Keeper H. J. Denny.

Odd Fellows - Waukon Lodge, No. 182, I. O. O. F., was organized January 3, 1870, with the following officers: Robert Isted, N. G.; J. B. Mattoon, V. G.; H. H. Stilwell, R. Sec.; L. M. Bearce, treas. Number of charter members, thirty-five. Charter granted October 20, 1870. The membership in good standing in 1882 was 42, and the officers were: A. G. Stewart, N. G.; E. B. Raymond, V. G.; O. M. Nelson, R. And P. Sec.; Joseph Burton, Treas.

The Present officers are John C. Beedy N. G., and Wilbur F. Raymond, Secretary. Affiliated with this lodge is a flourishing lodge of the Daughters of Rebekah.

Hope Encampment, No. 77, was organized at Lansing, April 4, 1875; charter granted April 24. It was removed to Waukon March 8, 1881, and the officers in 1882 were: Joseph Haines, C. P.; R. L. Bircher, H. P.; C. S. Stilwell, S. W.; R. A. Nichols, N. W.; O. M. Nelson, scribe; A. A. Barnard, Treas.

The present officers of Hope Encampment are: J. T. Steele, C. P,; J. E. Raymond, H. P.; Halvor Peterson, S. W.; Robert Douglass, J. W.; C. S. Stilwell, Scribe; John Mills, Chaplain.
Maccabees-There is also a Waukon lodge of this order, of which J. F. Kelly is Secretary.

The base ball fever struck Waukon in April, 1868, when the “Prairie Boys Base Ball Club” was organized. F. M. Clark, Pres.; D. W. Adams, Vice-Pres.; H. H. Stilwell, Treas.; T. C. Ransom, Umpire; T. G. Orr, Sec.; W. C. Earle, First Captain, F. H. Robbins, Second Captain; P. C. Huffman, Scorer. The first match game with our neighbors took place on the home grounds, July 9, when both nines of the Lansing “Occidentals” were defeated, score not printed. July 17th, the first nine beat the “Independents” at Freeport, 41 to 32. September 22d a return game was played here when the Independents were again defeated, giving up at the end of the sixth inning with the score 37 to 20. The Prairie Boys “line up” then was: Fred Clark, 2d base: Frank Robbins, catcher; Dave Walker, short stop; Frank Stevens, center field; Bird Reed, left field; Dud Adams, 1st base; H. H. Stilwell, pitcher; Doc Earle, 3d base; Rod Manson, right field.

Evidently the big leaguers of today would stand no show against such an aggregation of score-makers.

M. Hancock and family arrived in Waukon April 9, 1856, coming up to Lansing the day before on the War Eagle, from Dunlieth. The following few items from his dairy, though unimportant are of interest:

June 11,1856, went fishing to Silver creek and caught fifty trout.

(Along here or a little later Frank Hancock and Dudley Adams used to start out on foot in the morning and fish down Patterson creek to the Iowa , returning late at night with great strings of trout. As late as 1866 the dairy notes Mr. Adams catching 75 on one trip.) A few years later they had almost entirely disappeared.

July 4, 1856, big celebration, said to be 1500 people present.

August 4, ‘56, election day for state and county officers. Republican vote (in township) 86; Democrat 39.

October 1, ‘56, steam mill burned. County Fair, or cattle show, in progress.

November 4, ‘56, presidential election. Township vote, republican 121, democratic 71.

One more item from the diary: Sunday, August 31, 1862, a messenger came from Ossian early this morning and says the Indians have burned Mankato and New Oregon, and are coming this way. Mr. Hatch, Mr. Wilbur, and Mr. Gardner went to Decorah, and Mr. Wilbur returned this evening and said the report was not true. This was the famous “Indian scare.”


~transcribed by Diana Diedrich

(pages 379 & 389 have photos, and pages 380 & 390 are blank)

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