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John McGregor


Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 3/10/2009 at 12:53:12

John McGregor is a proprietor of the Orchard farm, one of the most desirable farms of Boone county. It comprises 240 acres of arable land on Sec 18, Beaver township, and while he carries on general farming he is also extensively engaged in fruit growing, his horticultural interests proving remunerative source of income. Upon his place are good buildings and all modern equipments, and the neat and thrifty appearance of the farm indicates the practical and progressive spirit of the owner, who for thirteen years has made his home in Boone county.
Mr McGregor was born in Bedford county, Pennsylvania, November 7, 1845, a son of Duncan and Sarah (Blackburn) McGregor, both of whom are natives of Bedford county, Pennsylvania, where they were reared and married. There the father engaged in farming until May 1853, when he removed with his family to Peoria county, Illinois, spending two years in that place, He purchased a farm in Princeville township Peoria county, and was engaged in farming until the death of his wife in February 1889. He then came to Boone county, Iowa in 1890, and died here in the same year. Unto him and his estimable wife were born eight children: A H, who is extensively engaged in farming and stock raising in Beaver township, John, of this review, Ella, the wife of J H Miller, a farmer and stock raiser of Warren county, Iowa, who served for two terms in the state legislature and also an extra session, and was a loyal soldier in the Union army in the Civil War, William, a retired farmer living in Monica, Peoria county, Illinois, George, who is conducting a large cattle ranch in South Dakota, Margaret, the wife of Thomas Darby, an agriculturist of Peoria county, Illinois, Daniel, who is engaged in the cattle business in western Kansas, and Jackson, who died in infancy.
To the common school system of his native county, John McGregor is indebted for the educational privileges which he enjoyed. In his youth he early became familiar with farm work in all its departments for he assisted his father form an early age, remaining upon the old home farm until he was twenty-three years of age. At that time he was married to Martha Colwell, a daughter of Henry and Elizabeth (Dawson) Colwell, the former a farmer and stock buyer in Stark county, Illinois. After their marriage the young couple began their domestic life upon a farm in Peoria county, They started with very little, but working with the steady purpose to become independent and to give their children a good education, they have gained a handsome competence which will supply them with all the necessities and many of the luxuries of life in their declining days. It was about 1889 that they left Illinois and became residents of Boone county, Iowa. They now have in the home farm 240 acres of valuable land and most of the improvements uo0pon the place stand as monuments to the enterprise, thrift and progressive spirit of John McGregor. In addition to general farming he has one of the largest orchards in this part of the state, including apples, crabapples, peaches, plums, cherries and a large variety of small fruit. He likewise has a fine grove which consists of soft maples and ash trees and constitutes one of the finest groves in this part of the country. Everything about the place is in keeping with the ideas of a model farm of the twentieth century and Mr McGregor’s opinions concerning fruit growing are largely considered as authority in this locality.
The home of our subject and his wife has been blessed with nine children. C D, the eldest, is occupying the position of professor of shorthand in the commercial department of Drake University, as Des Moines, Iowa, William died in infancy. J J is a resident farmer of Beaver township, M D follows farming in Greene county, Iowa, A D is a farmer of Beaver township, Hattie is attending Drake University, LeRoy is a resident farmer of Amaqua township. Ollie is also a student in Drake University, Frank, who completes the family is at home.
In the spring of 1892, in company with Mr Steelsmith of Beaver township, Mr McGregor took an extensive trip to the Pacific coast, visiting many places of interest and spending about three weeks in the at way. In the fall of the same year he traveled through Colorado, Texas, New Mexico and the republic of Mexico, and also visited Oklahoma and Arkansas, looking for a good location for his sons. Mr McGregor and his family are numbered among the leading citizens of Boone county and his life has been one of untiring activity and energy whereby a comfortable competence has been won and a leading position in reliable financial circles has been gained.

1902 Boone County History Book


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