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TRACY, Lorenzo 1829-1905


Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 9/23/2010 at 14:48:33


Remarkable Career of a Buchanan County Citizen

Was Preacher, Teacher, Editor, Legislator and Farmer

The following account of the remarkable career of L. D. Tracy, who led near Jesup last week, is given by the Grundy Center Democrat.

Lorenzo Dow Tracy was born July 5, 1829, at Knox, Albany county, New York. He was first married to Emmaline Shaw August 8, 1853, who died March 31, 1855, at Carleton, Orleans county, New York.

Mr. Tracy was again married in Winnebago county, Wis., to Miss Mary Jane Clark July 21, 1855. Of this union there were born three sons and one daughter, all of whom died in infancy except James A. Tracy, who lives to perpetuate the name and memory of a truly worthy sire.

Mr. Tracy was converted in early manhood in upper New York at a camp meeting. He consecrated himself to, the work of the ministry and was admitted on trial as a regular itinerant minister of the Methodist Episcopal church in 1855 as a probationary member of the Wisconsin annual conference. In 1857 he was admitted to full connection and ordained by Bishop E. R. Ames and was stationed at Grand Rapids. He was ordained an elder in 1859 by Bishop O. C. Baker. A throat trouble early developed which defected him for his chief purpose in life.

Rev. Tracy moved from Wisconsin and settled near New Hartford, Iowa, in the fall of 1861; thence he removed to Grundy Center in the spring of 1862 and continued to live in this county with the exception of one year spent in Illinois, until the year 1883, when he removed to Iowa Falls, Iowa, where he soon came into prominence. As early as 1862, the time of his first residence in Grundy Center, he became one of the charter members of the Grundy Center Methodist Episcopal church. The people of this section found in him a man of sterling qualities and for fourteen years pushed him forward as their champion. He represented them two terms in the state legislature, being elected first in 1866 and later in 1874. He held other offices of trust, filling every county office from time to time, except only that of sheriff, some of these offices of trust including county judge, superintendent of public instruction, county treasurer, county recorder, chairman of the board of supervisors and mayor of the town of Grundy Center. He was a man who could not be turned from the path of duty by threats, promises of reward, flattery or bribed by lucre. He was never known to betray a trust. He was loyal to God and loved the church of his early choice.

Rev. Tracy was also of a literary cast of mind, having in his early life been a contributor to journalism, much of his literary matter being still extant. He filled with grace the editorial chair of the Grundy County Argus and later the Cedar Falls Gazette and Iowa Falls Sentinel.

His late wife died in 1900 at Lake Geneva, Wis., and then only was the spirit of the tireless worker broken and, depleted in his physical manhood, he moved to Jesup, Iowa, three years ago, where he resided until the time of his death, April 13, 1905.

The best of his years had been spent for others, and those who knew him well beheld in him no selfishness, no thought for his own temporal wants and lie went to his eternal rest full of years and countless good deeds.

For the past few weeks his sufferings were intense and at times seemed almost unbearable. These sufferings were alleviated as far as possible by a loving and dutiful son, assisted by other dear friends of the household, who sought by tenderest ministrations to nourish the flickering spark of life. "The wheels of life" had run their appointed course and died down in spite of all, and the tired and aching body relinquished its occupant and the spirit went home to God.

Mr. Tracy's remains were brought to Grundy Center Saturday and taken to the home of Albert Clark. Funeral services were held in the Methodist church Sunday afternoon and the remains were laid in Clark's cemetery. The services at the church were conducted by Rev. Kennedy of this city and Rev. Parkin of Conrad, who was deceased's former pastor at Jesup.

Those from abroad who were here to attend the funeral were Mrs. Thompson and daughter, Ruth, and Mrs. Tracy of Hubbard, J. C. Clark of Parkersburg, Mr. Coolridge of Conrad and James Tracy and family of Jesup.

--Waterloo Courier (Waterloo, Iowa), 21 April 1905


Grundy Obituaries maintained by Tammy D. Mount.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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