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Charles A Sherman


Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 3/11/2009 at 17:16:29

Charles A Sherman to say of him whose name heads this sketch, that he has risen unaided form comparative obscurity to rank among the leading business men of Iowa, is a statement that seems trite to those familiar with his life, yet it is but just to say in history that will descend to future generations that his business record has been one that many would be proud to possess. Beginning a the bottom round of the ladder, he has advanced steadily, step by step, until he is now occupying a position of prominence and trust reached by few men in this portion of the state. Through his entire business career he has been looked upon as a model of integrity and honor, never making an engagement that he has not fulfilled and standing today an example of what determination and force, accompanied with the highest degree of business integrity, can accomplish for a man of natural ability and strength of character. He is respected by the community at large and honored by his business associates. His interests have been of varied character and have led not only to his individual success but has also promoted the prosperity and progress of Iowa.
Mr Sherman is a native of Sandgate, Vermont, born September 22, 1830, his parents being Seeley M and Julia (Flower) Sherman, both of whom were also native of Sandgate, the father born in 1809 and the mother in 1808. The paternal grandfather, Seeley Sherman, was a native of the Green Mountain state and the family was early established there. He married Miss Phillips and among their children was Seeley Sherman, who in early life engaged in farming but afterward turned his attention to the manufacture of Plows. He was also a carpenter and machinist and a man of untiring industry and diligence, who through his own well directed efforts accumulated a good property. For a time he resided in West Rupert, Vermont, and subsequently he took up his abode in Lowell, Massachusetts. At a later day he lived in Whitehall, New York, but both he and his wife are now deceased. In their family were three children who reached mature years our subject being the eldest. The others are: Silliman B, who resides in South Dakota, and Mrs Celia m Hall of New York.
Charles A Sherman, whose name introduces this review, spent the days of his boyhood and youth in the Green Mountain state and entered the public schools, there acquiring his preliminary education which was supplemented by study in a college in Cambridge, New York, He entered upon his business career as an employee in the Appleton Bank of Lowell, Massachusetts, in the capacity of assistant cashier and there remained form 1847 to 1855. He was then elected cahier in the Prescott Bank, but declined to accept the position, having determined to seek a home and fortune in the west, for he believed that there were better business opportunities in a district not so thickly populated as the older east. Accordingly he journeyed toward the setting sun an in October 1855, established a home in Fort Dodged, Iowa. There he established a private bank, doing business under the firm name of Green, Weare & Company. Subsequently the bank became the property of the firm of Merritt, Sherman & Company and our subject was connected with the institution until 1860, when the affairs of the bank were closed up.
He served as postmaster of Fort Dodge in 1861, filling the office until after the inauguration of the Civil war, when prompted by a spirit of loyalty to his country he offered his services to the government. He had been a very active factor in the early business interests of Fort Dodge, his labors largely promoting its commercial activity, and consequent prosperity. He built the Duncombe Hotel. At the time of the Civil War, however, he put aside all business and personal consideration and took quite an active part in raising an independent company to go to the front. This company was to be organized in honor of a Mr Holland of Dubuque, Iowa but when the troops arrived in Washington, they were placed in Company A, of the eleventh Pennsylvania Cavalry in order to fill out that company. Mr Sherman joined the army as a private and was afterward made a sergeant, while later he became quarter master of his regiment at Fortress Monroe. He saw some very active service and was at he front until honorably discharged at the close of the war in 1865. He was ever true and loyal to his duty, performing every task assigned him without question or hesitation.
At the close of hostilities Mr Sherman was honorably discharged as returned to Forty Dodge, but after a short time there passed came to Boonesboro, Iowa, in July 1865, and bought the first established bank in that place. He continued in the banking business until 1885 and has also been very active in other enterprises, building what is known as the plug railroad form the coal mines, a work which greatly facilitated the mining interests of the county. In 1885 he sold this line to the Northwestern Railroad Company. He has also been and active factor in developing the coal interests and placing the product on the market. He has always been interested in merchandising and has been connected with mining and railroad building in the state of Wyoming. He now has very extensive and important interests there and is also engaged in developing oil wells and mines at Lewiston, Wyoming, and other places.
Mr Sherman was first married in 1858, the lady of his choice being Tirzah Vincent, of Fort Dodge, Iowa. She was drowned April 22,. 1862, while crossing the Boone river and the two children born of that union are also deceased. On May 30, 1866, Mr Sherman was again married, his second union being with Mary Wood, who was born in Waterford, Pennsylvania. Unto them have been born four children: Phoebe V, Charles B, Alice M. and Lucy F.
Mr Sherman give his political support to the Republican party, believing that its platform contains the best elements of good government. He is an Episcopalian in his religious views, and is connected with several civic societies, including the Masonic Lodge of Boone and Miller Post, G A R of which he has served as commander. H has a nice home in Boone and is one of the best known and most prominent citizens. What he has accomplished in the world of commerce can not be adequately told in words. He has directed and controlled business enterprises of much magnitude, has unusual powers of organization and executive ability and yet if one should seek in his career the causes that have led to his success they will be found along the lines of well tried and old time maxims. Honesty and fair dealing, promptness, truthfulness and fidelity, all these are strictly enforced and adhered to. He is a most genial man to meet, an excellent illustration of a self made man, and his career should serve as a lesson to the young. His life history proves most forcibly the power of patience and persistence. He has so conducted all affairs whether of a public or private nature as to merit the esteem of all classes and citizens and no work of reproach is ever uttered against him. As a man and citizen he enjoys the added prosperity which come to those genial spirited, who have a hearty shake of the hand with all of those whom they meet day after day and who seem to throw around them in consequence so much to the sunshine of life.

1902 Boone County History Book


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