MORRISON, WILLIAMS, BOYD, STUCK, WOODMANCY, WHITKEY, KEMP, BURNSWORTH, DAGGET, COLE, BERRICK, DOWNEY
Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 11/13/2011 at 11:12:08
ROSS MORRISON. The man who travels knows and appreciates the value of a good bed and well prepared food. It is not possible for a person to enjoy going from place to place, however attractive the city or country visited, unless he has a good bed and wholesome food. Man is not only a creature of habit, but also a creature dependent for peace of mind, as well as of body, upon the condition of his stomach. The village of Morrison is fortunate in being able to offer the traveling public a first-class stopping place in the hotel known as the Morrison House, the proprietor being our subject, Ross Morrison. This house is well furnished throughout, and guests find the services all that could be desired.
Mr. Morrison is a native of the Keystone State. He was born in Fayette County, February 18, 1839, and is the son of Guyon and Mary (Williams) Morrison. His paternal grandfather, Alexander Morrison, was born in Ireland, and came to America with his parents when a child. He grew to manhood in Beaver County, Pa., on a farm, and agricultural pursuits continued to be his chosen occupation through life. In an early day he removed to Fayette County, Pa., and there reared his large family. In his political views he was an old line Whig. Although his education was quite limited, he was a well posted man and a fluent conversationalist.
The father of our subject was a native of Beaver County, Pa., and was the youngest child born to his father's first marriage. During his youth he learned the trade of a general mechanic, and followed this for a number of years, but his principal occupation was farming. He selected his wife in the person of Miss Mary Williams, daughter of William and Nancy Williams, and his nuptials were celebrated in Fayette County, Pa. He began with limited means, but being industrious, persevering and economical, he became the owner of about four hundred acres in Fayette County, where he passed the remainder of his days, dying February 18, 1855. His marriage resulted in the birth of ten children: Elizabeth A., wife of Parks A. Boyd; Nancy, wife of H. Stuck; Casinda, wife of D. Woodmancy; Rachel, wife of George Whitkey; Jefferson, Ross, Isaiah, Thomas, Stewart and Leonard. The mother of these children died in 1872. Both she and her husband were exemplary members of the Christian Church, and he often took the place of the preacher. Mr. Morrison was a Whig, as was his father, and held a number of local positions.
In the district schools of his native county our subject received his education, and he remained with his mother until twenty-two years of age, when he married Miss Hannah Kemp, a native of Fayette County, Pa., as were also her parents, Julius and Rhoda (Burnsworth) Kemp. To Mr. and Mrs. Morrison ten children were born: Nora, who died after reaching womanhood, and was the wife of Frank Dagget; Emma, wife of E. C. Cole; Fannie, wife of E. S. Berrick; Rhoda; Maud, wife of H. Downey; Edith, Gertrude, and three who died in infancy. After marriage, our subject began farming on the old homestead in Pennsylvania, and continued this for four years. He then engaged in contracting on the railroad for one year, after which, in 1872, he came to Grundy County, Iowa. He bought a farm of two hundred and forty acres in what is now Washington Township, on which he lived for five years.
This farm our subject sold, and when the village of Morrison was started, in 1877, he bought his present property, to which he removed after leaving the farm. For some time after starting in the hotel business, he was engaged in the livery business as well, but later gave that up. He is also the owner of other village property. During the Civil War, Mr. Morrison enlisted in Company K, One Hundred and Sixteenth Pennsylvania Regiment; he was with the Army of the Potomac, and participated in the battle of the Wilderness and others. Later he was wounded in the hand, losing one finger, and was discharged in June, 1865. He took part in the Grand Review at Washington, D. C. Mr. Morrison, who is now Mayor of Morrison, has held other prominent positions, and is one of the representative men of the county. He is a member of the Grand Army of the Republic at Grundy Centre. While a resident of Pennsylvania, he was Assessor a number of times.
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