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Samuel M Sterrett


Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 3/10/2009 at 12:54:36

Samuel M Sterrett, who is familiarly called “Uncle Sam” by his numerous friends, is one of the wide awake and progressive farmers of Dodge township, living on Sec 21, where he owns and cultivates 240 acres of rich land, pleasantly situated six miles north of Boone. Mr Sterrett is numbered among the native sons of Indiana, his birth having occurred in Carroll county of that state on October 14, 1835. His father, Robert Sterrett, was a native of Ireland, and on crossing the Atlantic to the new world took up his abode in Carroll county, Indiana. By trade hw was a weaver, following the vocation in early life, but after his removal to Carroll county he carried on agricultural pursuits. His death there occurred in 1837 and his wife passed away about five years later.
Mr Sterrett of this review was only tow years old at the time of his father’s death and was left an orphan at the age of seven. He then went to make his home with his uncle, but from early youth has been dependent entirely upon his own resources. After attaining his majority he rented land and engaged in farming upon his own account in Carroll county, Indiana, for four years. The year 1865 witnessed his arrival in Boone county, Iowa. He had visited this district in 1859 and was married here to Miss Mary Dawkins, a native of Kentucky, her girlhood days being spent in that state and in Indiana and Iowa. Mr and Mrs Sterrett began their domestic life in the Hoosier state where he continued his farming pursuits until 1865 when he made preparations to establish a home in Iowa. In January 1866, he purchased 240 acres of raw prairie land on Sec 21, Dodge township and he at once began the work of making his fields cultivable. He built a fence around the place an soon the breaking plow was seen on the tract, turning the first furrows and getting the land into a condition for cultivation. From year to year his farm has been improved and today is a very valuable tract. He has a large an pleasant home which was erected in 1888. There are also two good barns and he has planted fruit, shade and ornamental trees. The substantial improvements on all parts of the farm are indicative of the enterprise and progressive spirit of the owner who commenced life a poor young man, in fact, has depended upon his own resources form early boyhood. He found that industry, close application and reliability won him advancement and these qualities have been salient characteristics in his entire career.
Mr Sterrett lost his first wife after coming to Boone county, her death occurring in 1869. Three children were born of that union: Telitha J, the wife of John Hannan, of Boone, who is in the employ of the Northwestern Railway Company, Celesta, the wife of Rev A T Carpenter, a Methodist Episcopal minister now located in Keyapaha county, Nebraska, and Margaret E, with wife of John Boucher, of Churdan, Iowa. In 1870 Mr Sterrett was again married, his second union being with Winnie Baker, who was born in Clay county, Indiana, but during her infancy was brought to Iowa where she was reared to womanhood. Ten children were born of this marriage: Docia, the wife of Herman Stotts, of Dodge township, Mae, the wife of Arthur Stotts of the same township, Eva at home, Mabel, who is a student in the high school of Boone, Clara Bell, William Alexander, Lillie, and Irene. They also lost one son, Robert L, who died when about eight years of age. The parents are consistent and active members of the Methodist Episcopal church of Ridgeport, and in politics Mr Sterrett is a Prohibitionist. He has ever been fearless in the defense of his honest convictions and has never faltered in announcing the same. In early life he was a Jackson Democrat and cast his first ballot for James Buchanan, in 1856, and his next vote for Stephen A Douglas. He afterward supported the men and measures of the Republican party for several years and is now a Prohibitionist, having long been a warm friend of the cause of temperance. He has served from a few terms as township trustee and has been a member of the school board. Mr Sterrett is a man of known integrity who enjoys and merit’s the confidence and good will of his fellow men. He is true to very cause or interest which he believes to be right and dos not hesitate to denounce those which he believes will prove detrimental to the general welfare. That he has a pleasant and genial manner is indicated by his large circle of friends and by the name of “Uncle Sam” with which they usually greet him.

1902 Boone County History Book


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