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The IAGenWeb Project

History of Benton County, Iowa
The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, 1910; Luther B. Hill, Ed.

Pages 606-610

JOHN DEKLOTZ — The late John Deklotz was born June 24, 1828, at Thalheim, Germany, and was accidentally killed at Norway, Benton county, on his way to town by a fast train of the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad. His father, who was a farmer in Germany, owned some land, but died while John was a young man, so that the burden of looking after the rest of the family came upon him. His mother came of a good old German family, and after her son had made a home in Iowa she was induced to come to live with him, and was well cared for the remainder of her life; she died in Tipton, Iowa.

John Deklotz received his education in the country schools of his native country, and there remained looking after his brothers and sisters until 1854, when he emigrated to the United States. Mr. Deklotz first located at Galion, Ohio, where he worked about five years at the trade of shoemaker, and in 1859 removed to Tipton, Iowa. He followed his trade for about three years in that city and then purchased twenty acres nearby and began farming; two years later he sold his interest there and removed to Benton county and purchased eighty acres, upon which he expended his time and labor to such good advantage that he was soon able to add another eighty acres, and with this farm was so successful as soon to be able to purchase another ninety acres, and soon came to have one of the best improved farms in the vicinity. He came to have a reputation as an expert farmer and a level-headed man of business. Mr. Deklotz made a careful study of cultivating his land to the best advantage, and was always willing to make experiments which might be of benefit to him. He had a pleasant, even temper, and was broad minded and charitable. He took a commendable interest in local affairs, and was the friend of growth and progress. He was one of the chief workers for the building of the Catholic church at Norway, and served many years as treasurer and trustee. He also used his influence toward the building of the present Catholic school house, and took great interest in the furtherance of education. As a Democrat he was ever ready to serve the interests of his party and the public, and in the five years he served on the Florence township school board did his best for the maintenance of a good school. His death occurred March 31, 1906.

Some years previous to his death Mr. Deklotz had retired from active business life. His death came as a shock to all, and he was deeply mourned by the entire community, where he had won the highest esteem and confidence. Mr. Deklotz married, April 1, 1856, in Galion, Ohio, Elizabeth, daughter of John and Elizabeth Fetter, of Sixhelden, Germany; she was educated in Germany and came to the United States in 1854. The children of John Deklotz are: Frank, a banker of Kirkman, Iowa, Fannie, of Norway, Iowa, and Lewis, a banker of Newhall, Iowa, and further mentioned elsewhere in this work.

Mr. Deklotz was an earnest member of the German Catholic church, and reared his family in this faith. He was a man of quiet nature, and loved his home and family devotedly.

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