HAMMER, BENDER, ULTZ, ELLIOTT, BROWNELL
Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 11/12/2011 at 12:29:16
HENRY HAMMER has been prospered since he came to this county many years ago, and while assisting in the development of Fairfield Township, Grundy County, of which he is a pioneer settler, he has acquired a valuable estate. He is still actively engaged in raising stock and supervising the cultivation of his admirably tilled and finely improved farm.
Henry Hammer was born in Mt. Pleasant, Westmoreland County, Pa., on the 30th of August, 1830, and is a son of John and Catherine (Bender) Hammer, also natives of the Keystone State. The mother was born and reared in Westmoreland County and received a good education, being well versed in the German language. She was married in Pennsylvania, and accompanied her husband to Ohio when our subject was a lad of six years. They took up their abode on a farm in Crawford County, which Mr. Hammer continued to cultivate until his decease, when in his forty-eighth year. The mother was again married, her union being with John B. Ultz, and to them was born one child, a daughter, Harriet, who is now married and makes her home in Missouri. She later removed to Rockford, Ill., and on coming to Iowa, here made her home for a time. She later went to Nebraska, and there died, at the advanced age of seventy-three years.
The subject of this sketch passed his boyhood days on his fatherís farm in Crawford County, Ohio, and after receiving a good education, left Ohio and moved to Illinois. Possessed of ambition and a determination to succeed in life, he came to Fairfield Township in 1853, and entered one hundred and twenty acres of land, which still forms a portion of his present fine estate. His farm is pleasantly located on section 12, and in all respects is one of the most desirable in the neighborhood. It is supplied with ample buildings for every purpose, including a neat and comfortable dwelling, good barns, etc., and the machinery for operating the farm is of the most modern style. He is widely and favorably known in this part of the state and bears the distinction of being the first settler in Grundy County.
In 1852, Mr. Hammer and Miss Christiana, daughter of Benjamin and Polly M. (Elliott) Brownell, were united in marriage. The lady was born July 8, 1833, in Warren County, Pa., where she was reared and educated. Her parents were natives of New York and were well-to-do people of Erie County. Mr. and Mrs. Hammer have no children of their own, but are performing the part of parents to an adopted son, who bears the name of Frank.
After his marriage our subject continued to reside in Illinois for a twelvemonth, then made the journey from Rockford to this county overland with teams. He landed here with but $40 in his pocket, and after he had located his claim he moved his covered wagon on the place, in which the family lived until he could find time to erect a log cabin. In that early day, Indians and wild animals were very numerous, and the young couple suffered many of the privations incident to life in an unsettled region.
Although Mr. Hammer has usually been quite successful in his business transactions, he has also met with some reverses. He lost quite a sum of money in the failure of the Cedar Falls Bank in the summer of 1893. He interests himself in the public life of the county, in which he has borne an honorable part, serving as Justice of the Peace of Fairfield Township for sixteen years. In politics he is a Republican. With his wife he is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and probably no couple in the county are more highly respected than they, and certainly none are more deserving of representation in this Record.
Portrait and Biographical Record
of Jasper, Marshall and Grundy Counties, Iowa
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