GRAHAM, GILMORE, WYATT, STRONG
Posted By: volunteer transcriber
Date: 3/5/2004 at 18:10:32
J. T. Graham
Is a native of Pittsford, Vt., born Feb 18, 1824. He grew to man hood in his native city, and at the age of eighteen engaged in the milling business there. In the spring of 1852 he went to California via the Isthmus of Panama. He was detained on the Isthmus one month, and eighty out of 900 passengers that were on board the vessel with him died of sickness. He arrived in San Francisco, Cal., July 8, 1852, and owing to the dry weather could not mine, so he obtained employment in Sacramento in a corn mill, the owner giving him full charge and $150 a month. Through Mr. Graham’s instrumentality bolting cloths were put into the mill, and flour was manufactured out of wheat raised in California. Thus he has the honor of making the first flour made in that State – it is so recorded in the city of Washington D. C., today. After a few months the city of Sacramento was destroyed by fire and the mill was burned. Mr. Graham then engaged in mining, being very successful. He struck a bonanza, taking out $8.000 in five weeks. He remained in California until 1853, and on July 24 of that year he embarked on a steamer for Vermont. In the fall of 1853 he came to Iowa, locating in Clayton County, where he bought 400 acres of land and built a saw mill on the Little Turkey River, which he operated four years, and in the meantime built a flouring mill for Mr. Gillmore of that place. He sold out his interest and came to Marble Rock, Floyd County, Ia., and built a fine flouring mill near there, which he operated one year, and in the spring of 1861 a terrible flood of water and ice swept his mill away, leaving him entirely destitute. With that determination to succeed that has always characterized him, he went at once to Rockford, and in company with George Wyatt, built a flouring mill on Lime Creek, which he ran nine years; then went to Portland, Ia., and there built a mill, selling it one year later, and in 1871 he returned to Rockford and built his present mill. It has five run of burs, one patent roll, and is one of the most complete mills in the county. From the foregoing it will be seen that Mr. Graham has the honor of having built the first flower mills in Millville, Clayton County; Marble Rock and Rockford, Floyd County, and Port and Cerro Gordo County Ia. On Sept. 16, 1854, Mr. Graham was married to Ann S. Strong, a native of Brandon, Vt. Three children have blessed this union, viz.: Walter S., born June 18, 1855, Carrie A., June 20, 1861 and Frank, Sept. 16, 1863. Mr. Graham owns 270 acres of fine land, and a beautiful residence, which is a great contrast to the little cabin to which he brought his young wife in 1854. In politics he is a Republican.
- source: History of Floyd County, Iowa
Chicago: Inter-state Publishing Co., 1882.
LaCrosse, WI : Brookhaven Press, 2000 [Reprint]- Rockford Township; Pages 910 – 911
- transcribed by Kathy Gerkins
Clayton Biographies maintained by Sharyl Ferrall.
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