Thomas J Geyer
Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 3/11/2009 at 17:35:52
Thomas J Geyer, In Pilot Mound reside many retired farmers who in the capable management of business affairs in former years have won a competence sufficient to enable them to now rest form the arduous duties of field and meadow. Such a one is Thomas J Geyer, who for a third of a century carried on agricultural pursuits and still owns a valuable farm three miles east of town. A native of Ohio, he was born in Muskingum county, April 21, 1842, and is a son of Isaac Geyer whose birth occurred in Monongahela, Pennsylvania. The grandfather George Geyer was of Germany parentage and represented one of the first families established in that portion of the Keystone state. At a later day George Geyer removed with his family to Ohio, becoming one of the first settlers of Muskingum county. There the family became familiar with pioneer life in its different phases, enjoying its pleasures and also experiencing its hardships and trials,. Isaac Geyer was there reared, being the youngest of a family of six -- five sons and one daughter. He succeeded to the ownership of the old homestead in Muskingum county, whereon he had received ample training at farm labor. He was united in marriage to Jane Tomlinson, who was born in Virginia but was reared in Ohio a daughter of Solomon Tomlinson, another early settler of Muskingum county. Mr Geyer became a leading and influential farmer there and upon the old homestead which he developed and improved he spent the greater part of his life, passing away in 1888, when he had reached the advanced age of seventy-eight years. His wife also passed away at a ripe old age, dying in 1895 when ore than eighty years of age.
Thomas Geyer is the only son of these worthy people. He was reared to manhood in the county of his nativity, the old homestead farm being his playground in youth. His educational privileges were somewhat limited, for the schools of that district had not reached their present advanced standard and also his aid was needed in the cultivation of the farm. He continued to devote his attention to agricultural pursuits until May 1864 when he enlisted in the Union army for one hundred days service, joining the One Hundred and Sixteenth Ohio Regiment of the National Guard. This command was assigned to the Army of the Potomac, and was sent to Virginia where it did guard duty and was held in reserve being largely used in guarding railroads, trains and also in guarding prisoners. Mr Geyer served until after the term of his enlistment and was then mustered out and honorably discharged in Zanesville, Ohio in September, 1864. He then returned to the farm, but did not long continue his residence in Ohio.
In 1865 our subject removed westward to Illinois, and the following February came to Boone county, Iowa where he began work as a farm hand by the month. Soon afterward, however he began following carpentering in the city of Boone and later in the county and at Pilot Mound, being thus employed for about two years. After his marriage he took up his abode upon a farm which he rented and later he bought a place, first purchasing ten acres. He began to farm this and other land which he leased, and as success crowned his efforts and his capital was thereby increased he purchased other land from time to time and now has a place on 132 acres in the home farm. He built a good set of farm buildings upon it and place his land under a very high state of cultivation, in fact, the property became a desirable and valuable tract and to its further improvement and development Mr Geyer gave his undivided attention until 1901, when he came to Pilot Mound and located n the heart of the town on 4 ˝ acres of land which he had purchased several years before. Upon t he has built a good residence and his attention is now devoted to keeping up this place. The house is in first class condition and the beautiful lawn is carefully tended. Otherwise Mr Geyer is living a retired life and well does he merit the rest for through a long period his life was on of untiring activity.
On November 3, 1868 in Pilot Mound township, Mr Geyer was united in marriage to Mary Ann Berry, a native of Indiana and a daughter of George W Berry, one of the early settlers of the county, living along the Des Moines river. Mrs Geyer was largely reared and educated in Boone county. She proved to her husband a faithful companion and helpmate on life’s journey for many years but in September 1887 was called to her final rest leaving a desolate household her loss being deeply mourned not only by her immediate family, but also by many friends. In the family where sic children: John S who is now residing in Colorado City, Colorado, Adda May the wife of C C Copeland of Pilot Mound by who she has two sons, Orrin and Rolin, Charles B who is married and is farming the old home place, William who is also living there with his brother, Jennie the wife of Howard Kelley a farmer of Dodge township by who she has one daughter and Hattie A who is acting as her father’s housekeeper.
Mr Geyer’s study of the political questions the day has led him to ally his political strength with the Republican party. He cast his first presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln in 1864, and has since voted of reach candidate of the organization seeking to become a chief executive of the nation. He has served at different times as township trustee and as assessor, having made two assessments of Pilot Mound township. He was the friend of education, believing in securing competent teachers and thereby promoting the schools. He belongs to the Baptist church of Pilot Mound, has taken a very active and helpful part I the work of the Sunday school and served as its superintendent for a umber of years. His life has at all times been in consistent harmony with his profession. In business he has been found trustworthy and reliable keeping his engagements and never going back upon his word. IN matters of friendship he is loyal and true, and in his family he has been a devoted husband and father. He well deserved representation among the honored pioneers as well as the leading citizens of Boone county.
1902 Boone County History Book
Boone Biographies maintained by Jan Bony.
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