Waterloo Sunday Courier, Waterloo, Iowa. June 20, 1954
Tragedy Hits Lincoln Twp.
Tragedy came to Lincoln Township in 1865 with the death on his wedding night of Ransom P. Wright whose marriage to Charlotte Amelia Jamaeson was the first in the township. The Rev. Beach of the Six Mile Grove Church officiated.
Lincoln Township was set apart from Black Hawk Township in 1861 and the name selected because all 11 votes in the township in the presidential election of 1860 went to Lincoln.
Samuel Marsden, and William Wrought were township elections clerks with Samuel Roberts, Samuel Gibson and Horace Beckwith judges.
There were a few early land entries but William P. Thompson explained with the 1850’s :Money was scarce in Iowa and interest high—there were some who bought homes, cheaply too, and made payments on then, but were unable to continue, and lost what had been paid. Money demanded 20 per cent interest and short loans at banks brought 2 per cent a month. Many took home loans from eastern parties at 10 per cent and paid handsome premiums in order to get them.”
Byron Sargeant recalled that during the winter of 1855-56, Horace Beckwith floundered in the deep snow on his way to Black Hawk Creek for wood and “after he had burned up most of the posts and rails in his cattle yard, some four or five men on the Black Hawk Creek took horse teams, went to the timber, loaded their sleds with timber and drew it to Mr. Beckwith’s.”
When they first saw him, Mr. Beckwith was crawling out through the roof of his house by slipping a roof board to one side—the snow was up to the roof on the outside.”
Rails Miss, Barclay Dies
Barclay Township, formed in 1855, had high hopes for their Town of Barclay that once boated of two hotels and a main street of general stores.
James Barclay, after whom the township was named, had the complete plat of a town ready when Dubuque and Pacific railroad surveyors staked the line through his property but in 1861, the rail line went south through Jesup instead and Barclay town withered.
In the first township election, Barclay emerged as clerk and a Justice with William C. Morton the oher justice. Barclay later kept a hotel at a place called Camp Creek.
Jason Stubbs, who arrived in 1857, recalled seeing only one deer after coming here but said rattlesnakes and wolves were plentiful. Darkness and the lack of a good trail ofter resulted in Barclay settlers losing their way home from Waterloo.
Arrivals to the township before 1860 included Dr. James Munsey. John Schuler, Dan Brunn, T.F. Rice, L. Lewis, Charles Kleckner, H. Buss, W. Walker, H. Oliver, Cyrus Smith, Enoch Jenkins, Thomas Cunningham, John Buhner and Gregor Neith.
Fox Township Set Up by 1858 Order
Fox township had a house built in 1849 by Stephen Howell but it was not until 1858 that it became designed as a separate township.
In that year, the county court set aside Fox from Spring Creek Township and C.W. Corwin elected clerk with AB. Mather and M.S. Oxley, justices: S.I. Pettit, assessor and Lewis Shroyer and C.W. Corwin, constables.
Henry Gray, Stephen Howell and Peter Cox had broken the first ground in the township in 1852. L. Hubbert erected a bridge across Spring Creek in 1858 and E. M. Buechele built a township store in 1888.
The township became steeped in German, Dutch and French ancestry with the arrival of such men as Broche, Joung, Sauerbrie, Hueblein, Klackeman, Lichtenberg and Boowbower.
Bennington Loses Blakeville P.O.
On Feb. 1, 1858, the Black Hawk County court assigned the name Bennington to a township formed from a reduction in area of Lester Township.
Isaac K. Vanderberg was elected clerk; Thomas E. Homer and John E. Burlaw, justices and Hiram E. Bundy and Daniel Falkner, constables.
Homer was 19 when he arrived with his father in 1858 and immediately began to teah school in deserted log cabins. At that time, Homer said it was possible to drive to Waterloo in nearly a straight line because of the scarcity of fences and settlers in the area.
B.G. Updike was postmaster at the town of Blakeville in 1856, a community that disappeared with the coming of rural free mail delivery.
The township population in 1858 was 108 but there were still 25 sections without an inhabitant.
Settlers to Union Township in 1853
The earliest known settlers of Union Township were James and Elizabeth Bennett, who arrived from Illinois in 1853. The township was not established, however, until 1858.
In that year, Union was set apart from Washington Township and N.S. Bails elected clerk, Harrison Newell, constable and J.D. Gilkey and Randall Churchill, justices of the peace.
Newell’s marriage to Sarah J. Benham in 1855 was the first in the township.
Other early settlers were Clinton Bozarth, who came in 1854 and married Elizabeth Lane the following year; John and Mary Hackett, 1854; Henry J. Thompson, 1854 and John Morgan and wife, 1855.
Glasgow Dies in Mt. Vernon Twp.
A township named Mount Vernon was established on Sept, 19, 1854, and in the following year’s election, Moses St. John was named constable; Wallace Pattee, assessor; Thomas Gordon and Frederick Pattee, trustees and Joel Hiser and Randolph Leland, justices.
Milton Smith opened his tavern that year on the Independence, Janesville, Waverly road and later sold out his Seven-Mile-House to Charles Gibbs.
The Village of Glasgow was platted within the township in 1902 but only a railroad station survived. Before rural free delivery of mail, post offices were established at Nautril and Boies. Leversee & Murray quarried rock for a time in the township but dairy farming remained the largest industry and in 1882 the Fowler Co. established a cheese factory in Janesville.
The names of early settlers included Deeming, Eyestone, Leversee, Henry, Rundle, Webster, Sunderdin, Jacob, Callaghan, Decker, Brown and Kerr.
Confusion for Cedar, Big Creek
Despite an abnormality in its first election site, Cedar Township survived its organization year and the county court assumed blame for the error.
Cedar and Big Creek Townships were both ordered to set aside as a civil division in 1856 and elections scheduled for April 7th of that year. Somehow the polling plac for Cedar voters was designated at Jesse Wasson’s home in Big Creek and Big Creek voters cast their ballots in the Cedar Township home of T.R. Points.
The election results stood however and B. L Doxey emerged Cedar Township clerkl J.H. Mead, justice of the peace and C.K. White and N.P. Clark, constables.
Abraham Turner, who entered in land in Section 18 in the spring of 1853, was the first settler in the township.
Another early arrival, Jacob Koch, related that in 1853, “a story came up from the river that the Indians were on the war path and that they were massacreing all of the settlers.
“We had one little babe then and my wife and I took it, hitched up our oxen, and started up the river to seek a place of safety. When we reached Miller’s Creek was came across a man who had built a little cabin and he induced us to stay all night with him.
“The next day we returned home and I found that the story of the Indians had originated from a stampeded drove of ponies which had been frightened by a charivari for James Virden.:
The first postoffice in the township, called Eliza, was established in the home of John Forbes on Mud Creek.
Eagle Twp. Vote in 1858
Eight votes, four Republican and four Democratic, cast on Mar. 1, 1858 resulted in the election of Owen McManus, first clerk; N.P. Camp, Michael Mitchell, justice, and James Sheen (?) and Joseph Millage, constables of Eagle Township.
When C.W. Eighmey and wife arrived in 1856 the Eagle Center road was staked out but without a track. They hauled sawed lumber from Waterloo to construct their home.
He later recalled that one day he and his wife saw a wagon pulled by oxen and driven by a man and a woman approaching in the distance. When the outfit got within a few hundred feet of the house the man stood up in the box, took off his hat, waved it and yelled lustily.
The Eighmeys had never before seen such a performance but the stranger explained he was so glad to find someone else living in that section of the county that he could not restrain himself.
J.H. Meade and Cicero Close made the first land entries in 1854 but apparently did not settle in the township.
Arrivals after 1860 included William McGarvey, Damon Mott, Charles Strubel, H.B. Eighmey, William Bomber, M. Bateman, A. Bronson, Joe Easher, O. Eighmey, P.P. Eighmey, Jacob Fike, A.W. Garnder, William Schrader, Nick Beck, P.W. Kline, T.J. Humphrey and Joseph Kerr.
Chances are they were among the 100 township residents who attended the first Fourth of July celebration in C.W. Eighmey’s grove in 1866.
Newell Pioneers in Washington Twp.
Wahington is another of the county’s townships given an irregular boundary because of the natural obstacle of the river.
It was organized in 1857 with E.G. Young, clerk; W.J. Sherman and Elijah Eggers, constables; J. Ackerson and John Knapp, justices and Jow W. Hitchcock, James Newell and Velorus Thomas, trustees.
Newell is generally regarded as the first white settler in the county, arriving in 1845 to locate on the forks of the Cedar River close to the mouth of the Shell Rock. He died in 1875.
E.G. Young arrived shortly after Newell the same year.
The Knapps arrived in 1851, John to settle in section 22; Benjamin in section 26 and Sam and Judson in section 15.
Orange Once was Adeline Township
No reason can be found, but Adeline Township, established in 1858, was changed to Orange Township in the election the following year.
Obediah Lineaweaver had been elected clerk and William L. Manning and John Parker, justices of the peace.
Samuel Owens was the first to enter a land claim in the township but Samuel Whiate, arriving in 1853, was the first to settle here. He built a house on the later location of the Murphy farm.
White used lumber hauled from a mill at Cedar City but later Guy Benight and William Brown later built a steam sawmill north of the White farm. They sold out to James Virden in 1859 and it burned in 1861.
Orange Township farm land ranks today among the most fertile in the world.