WILLIAM BAUMGARDNER, is one of the substantial and honored retired farmers of Benton county, three times mayor of Van Horne and one of its standbys in the best sense of the word. He is a German by birth, born in Hanover, June 8, 1857, a son of William and Annie (Meyer) Baumgardner, both natives of that kingdom. They were the parents of two children - Jessie, now Mrs. Joseph Fix, residing in Nebraska, and William, of this sketch. In 1866, when the latter was but nine years of age, they located with their children in Jackson county, Iowa, where they purchased a farm. After some years this was sold and a homestead purchased on section 22, Eden township, Benton county. The property consisted of forty acres of raw land, which was well improved before a final move was made to Eldorado township, where the mother died in 1895, at the age of seventy-six years, and the father in December, 1902, when eighty-four.
Mr. Baumgardner, of this sketch, was reared on the home farms of Eden and Eldorado townships; received an average district school education; conducted the family place both before and after his marriage; and at his father's death in 1902 purchased the farm of three hundred and twenty acres in Eldorado township, rented it and retired to Van Horne. He had been not only a successful general farmer but a heavy stock raiser. Since becoming a resident of that place he has become active and prominent in all its important affairs. As stated, he has served for three terms as mayor; is a leading stockholder in the Van Horne Savings Bank; active in the fraternal work of Odd Fellows' Lodge No. 157, and, with his wife and older children, is closely identified with the German Lutheran church. On November 10, 1892, Mr. Baumgardner married Miss Margaret Wittern, who was born in Germany March 18, 1863, and came to the United States in 1891. Mr. and Mrs. Baumgardner are the parents of six children: John, who is farming in Eldorado township; Marie, Anna, Margaret, William, Jr., and Harry, who are living at home.