JOHN D. BRANDT, of Big Grove township, now retired from active farming, has gained financial success in Benton county from a very modest start in life. He was born in Hanover, Germany, December 12, 1845, and is a son of Dietriech and Annie (Bischel) Brandt, who came to America in 1853, and located in Lake county, Indiana, on a farm. There Dietriech Brandt died in 1876, aged seventy-three years, and his widow died August 29, 1893, aged seventy-two years. They had nine children, of whom eight are now living, namely: Mrs. Casper C. Gross, of Garrison; Mrs. William Bahr, William and Herman F. both living in Lyon county, Iowa; Mrs. D. W. Locker; Mrs. George Sautter, of Greeley county, Nebraska; Henry, living on the old home farm in Lake county, Indiana; and Margaret, born in 1847, married Fred Mussman and died in Benton county, in 1886.
John D. Brandt accompanied his parents to America at the age of seven years, and lived at home until June, 1869, when he came to Benton county, Iowa. Here he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land in Big Grove township, which he still owns, and which is operated by his son John. He has several times added to his land and now owns farms in Homer, Big Grove, Monroe and Jackson townships, aggregating about one thousand three hundred and twenty-eight acres. For about fourteen years he also owned and operated a threshing machine. He is one of the most successful farmers of the county, and has paid close attention to his business interests at all times.
In 1869 Mr. Brandt returned to Indiana and two years later drove back to Benton county, where he worked at clearing and breaking some of his land and then again returned to Lake county, Indiana, where in February, 1872, he married Margaret Meyer, who was born April 11, 1845, and was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. D. H. Meyer. Her mother died in Germany and the rest of the family came, in 1869, to the United States, locating in Lake county, Indiana; Mr. Meyer spent his last years in Benton county, at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Brandt, and died in 1887, aged about sixty-six years. Mrs. Brandt died August 28, 1893. Mr. Brandt and his wife had children as follows: William D., Anna S., John H., Marie G., Elizabeth E. and Ellen M. William D., of Homer township, married Christina Albrecht and they have one son and one daughter, Lucile and Walter. Anna S. married John F. Reiss, of Big Grove township, and they have four children, Harry, Ernest, Leola and Ivan. John H. married Minnie M. Gross, daughter of N. Gross, and they have three children, Floyd, Inez and Kenneth. Marie G. married William C. Heineman, of Monroe township, and they have three children, Irene, Fern and Richard. Elizabeth E. married William J. Knuth, of Homer township, and they have one daughter, Margaret M. Ellen M. died in 1886, in her second year.
Politically Mr. Brandt is a Republican, and he is a member of the Evangelical church, of Homer township. He belongs also to the Iowa Legion of Honor.