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RALSTON, James M. 1845-1931


Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 9/3/2015 at 07:23:05

James M. Ralston, Civil War Veteran, Died Wednesday

James M. Ralston, veteran of the Civil War and one of the early residents of Grundy county died at his home in Marshalltown on December 30th, following an illness covering a period of three years. He had been confined to his bed continually two weeks before the end came. Mr. Ralston was 86 years, eight months and six days old at the time of his death. He was born in Slatelick county, Pennsylvania. He had a war record covering a period of three years. He came to Grundy county 66 years ago and made that his home until he moved to Marshalltown in 1915.

Funeral services were held at the home in Marshalltown Saturday afternoon. The short service at the home was conducted by Rev. C. C. Bacon of Marshalltown. Following the service there the remains were taken to the Alice church of God where services were in charge of Rev. E. E. Heltibridle and the local pastor, Rev. J. L. Masemore. Burial was in the Alice church cemetery.

The following members of the American Legion from Conrad and Grundy Center served as a firing squad. From Grundy Center, R. E. Mertz, James Clapp, Emery Shaffer, Louis Johnson, Wilfred Bienfang, Kenyon King, D. E. Lawless. Legion members from Conrad were Dr. Gould, Ben Frederick and E. C. Anderson.

Mr. Ralston was of a family of 11 children, a son of James and Jane Ralston of Pennsylvania, and lived there until he was 9 years of age, when his parents came west to settle in Henry county, Illinois, where he made his home until 1866. Mr. Ralston enlisted in Company I, 102nd Illinois Infantry, Aug. 5th, 1862. He was to the service three years and was with Sherman on the march to the sea, taking part in all the battles of the campaign about Atlanta. He served until the close of the war. Returning from the war, he lived in Illinois for little more than a year, and then came with his parents to Iowa, settling in Grundy county.

He was married Nov. 4, 1868, to Miss Rebecca Kennedy, and moved to a farm near that of his parents. Mr. and Mrs. Ralston were the parents of seven children, four of whom preceded the father in death. Mrs. Ralston passed away March 11th, 1886. The surviving children are Mrs. Minnie Kennedy, of Calhoun City, Miss., who for the last three years has been in Marshalltown caring for her father; Mark Ralston, of Conrad; and Ray Ralston, of Dell Rapids, So. Dak.

Mr. Ralston was married a second time to Mrs. Susan Arford in Grundy county, April 5th, 1887, and to this union six children were born. One died in infancy. Mr. and Mrs. Ralston retired from the farm in 1915 and moved to Marshalltown. Mrs. Ralston passed away to her eternal home May 15, 1920. The surviving children from the second marriage are Glenn Ralston, living on the home place in Grundy county; Frank Ralston, of Egan, So. Dak.; Harold Ralston, of Marshall county; Clayton Ralston, of Tama county; and Mrs. Zack Momstock, of near Conrad. A sister, Mrs. Wm. Lighter, of Dodge City, Kan., who visited her brother, Mr. Ralston, last summer, also survives. Mr. Ralston was a member of the Methodist church of Marshalltown and the G.A.R. Not only has another of the very few old veterans left gone from us, but a loving father, highly respected citizen, neighbor and friend.

--The Grundy Register (Grundy Center, Iowa), 7 January 1932, pg 6


Grundy Obituaries maintained by Tammy D. Mount.
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