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KELLY, Horace B. 1842-1935


Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 11/8/2016 at 23:16:04

H. B. Kelly, State Commander G.A.R., Died Friday Eve.

Grundy County's Last Civil War Veteran Answers Last Roll Call. Was Past 93 Yrs. Old

H. B. Kelly, well known citizen of Grundy county for many years and last survivor in this county of the Civil War, died at 6:30 p.m. Friday at the home of Mrs. C. E. Thomas, a relative, in Waterloo, after an illness of one month. At the time of his death Mr. Kelly was Commander of the G.A.R., Department of Iowa, to which position he was elected at the state encampment in Waterloo last June. He had served the previous year as Senior Vice Commander of the Department.

When elected Commander, Mr. Kelly, who was 93 years old, plunged into the work of his office, making arrangements for Iowa's representation at the National G.A.R. Encampment in Detroit this summer, and attending to other duties. In spite of his years Mr. Kelly was hale and hearty. He made a trip to Estherville six weeks ago to attend a reunion of Spanish War Veterans. On this trip he caught a heavy cold which resulted in an embolism of the lung. Later brain fever developed, which attending physicians regarded as the cause of his death. During his illness Mr. Kelly's mind was busy constantly with his plans for the National Encampment. It was his pride that he had attended every National Encampment, except three, since the G.A.R. was organized.

Immediately following his death, Mr. Kelly's body was brought to the Coffman Funeral home in Grundy Center where it rested until Sunday afternoon. After a short prayer at the home, the casket was taken to the Methodist church where funeral services were held at 2:30 p.m. conducted jointly by the State G.A.R. and by the local Masonic Lodge, assisted by Rev. J. B. Bird. Burial was in the Clark cemetery, with military, patriotic society, and Masonic honors.

Horace Bronson Kelly was born January 22, 1842, at Kendall, N.Y., being one of a family of ten children, all of whom have preceded him in death.

September 4, 1864, he was united in marriage to Jennie McComb of Dane county, Wisconsin. They lived in Dane county two years, then moved to Blue Earth, Minnesota, where they resided seven years. In the spring of 1875 they came to Grundy county, locating on a farm. In the spring of 1894 the family moved to Grundy Center, which has since been Mr. Kelly's home except for four years spent in Waterloo at the Mrs. C. E. Thomas home near his son, Logan.

During his life in Grundy Center Mr. Kelly was prominent in the insurance business. He was secretary of the Farmers Mutual of Grundy Co. from 1895 to 1898. Later he represented other companies.

Mrs. Kelly passed away January 7, 1925, after she and Mr. Kelly had completed 61 years of life together. To this union were born seven children, all of whom survive except one son, Charles, who passed away March 15, 1912. The remaining children are Mrs. Edd Starr, Lake Park; Logan Kelly, Waterloo; Mrs. Oscar Fritzel, Mrs. John Clark, Will and Gertie of Grundy Center. There are also 14 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.

Answering President Lincoln's first call to arms in April, 1861, Mr. Kelly joined Company K, 3rd Wisconsin infantry. Only one of this regiment now survives. His service was all in Virginia and Maryland under Generals Banks and Thomas. He had a fine war record and is listed as "assistant surgeon" on the records at Washington, D.C., on account of his emergency service during the Civil War. He was honorably discharged in the spring of 1863 with a disability from which it was thought he could not recover.

He helped organize the G.A.R. Post at Reinbeck and was a charter member of Wilson Post No. 71, Grundy Center. He was also an honorary member of the W.R.C. in Grundy Center and Waterloo, and other patriotic organizations.

In 1934 he was elected Senior Vice Commander of the Iowa Department G.A.R. and this year he was elected Commander of the Iowa Department G.A.R. He was also a member of Emerald Lodge No. 334 A.F. & A.M., and Odd Fellows lodge at Reinbeck, last charter member.

Mr. Kelly enjoyed fine health until about three weeks ago, when his health broke and he failed rapidly, passing away peacefully at 6:30 Friday evening, Aug. 2. He was in his 94th year.

"The day has been long and the battle fierce,
But evening has come and all is peace and taps are sounding."

Impressive Rites For Com. Kelly

The funeral of H. B. Kelly Sunday afternoon was one of the most impressive services of its kind held in Grundy Center in some years. It was a fitting tribute to a well known citizen, to the Commander of the G.A.R. of Iowa, and to the last surviving veteran in Grundy county of the Civil War. At the Methodist church, which was crowded to capacity, a squad of forty members of the American Legion, representing posts in all parts of the county, formed a guard of honor. Fellow Masons of Emerald Lodge had charge of the service, eloquently and impressively led by E. K. Greene of Clear Lake. A group of twelve aged G.A.R. comrades of Mr. Kelly, from various parts of the state, took part in the ceremonies, under the leadership of Judge J. W. Willett of Tama, Past Commander of the Department. Other societies represented in the service were the W.R.C., state and local; the Daughters of Union Veterans of Waterloo, and the Ladies of the G.A.R., Department of Iowa. Rev. J. B. Bird offered prayer and music was rendered by a quartet, consisting of Mrs. Reed Trevillyan and her son Arthur, and Mrs. L. B. Canfield and her son Keith.

Leaving the church, the funeral procession was led to the cemetery by the American Legion under command of D. E. Lawless, and the Grundy Band. Following the hearse was a long procession of cars conveying members of the family, members of the Masonic and Odd Fellows lodges, members of the G.A.R. of Iowa, of the W.R.C. and D.U.V. societies, and many friends and citizens.

Services at the grave were conducted by the Daughters of Union Veterans, by the Masonic Lodge with E. K. Greene as the speaker, and by the American Legion represented by V. F. Sieverding, State Vice Commander, who removed the flag from the casket and presented it to Mr. Kelly's family. A trio of ladies from the Legion Auxiliary sang "Nearer, My God, to Thee." Rev. Bird offered a final prayer. The Legion guard of honor fired a salute of three volleys over the grave. The bugles sounded Taps, repeated twice by echoing bugles from road and woods beyond.

Pallbearers were all brother Masons of Mr. Kelly: R. J. Williamson, H. T. Willoughby, R. W. Geiter, E. S. King, C. J. Adams and Philip Liebsohn.

Among the members of the family and friends present from out of town were: Mr. and Mrs. E. E. Starr and daughter Marcella and son Edwin of Lake Park; Mr. and Mrs. Charles Reed of Emmetsburg; Mr. and Mrs. George Carlson and son Charles of Vinton; Mr. and Mrs. Elmer Ford and children, Reinbeck; Mr. and Mrs. Logan Kelly and son Charles, Mrs. C. E. Thomas and son Irwin, of Waterloo; Mr. and Mrs. George Clark and sons Marvin and Donald, Mr. and Mrs. Delbert Clark and Mr. and Mrs. Lucius Clark, of Minneapolis; Mr. and Mrs. Edwin Devendorf of Des Moines; Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Starr of Iowa Falls; Mrs. Bertha Fuller, Eldora; Will Bowen of Grinnell.

Members of the Department of Iowa G.A.R. present were: Ole Nelson, P.N.V.C., Slater, Iowa; Frank L. Quade, P.C., Dubuque; Judge J. W. Willett, P.C., Tama; Dr. L. J. Lench, P.C., West Branch, Iowa; J. P. Risley, Adjt. Gen., Des Moines; Judge T. J. Noll, Grinnell; G. H. Clement and N. T. Grotten, Marshalltown; S. B. Humbert, Cedar Falls; Eugene Owen, Cedar Rapids; J. C. Haines, S.V.C., Des Moines. Mr. Haines will succeed Mr. Kelly in command of the Department of Iowa, G.A.R.

One other veteran was present whose name was not learned.

Capt. Hathaway of the Iowa Adjt. Gen. office at Des Moines, in charge of graves registration, was a member of the G.A.R. party from Des Moines.

Members of the Masonic fraternity present from out of town were: John T. Ames, Traer, Grand Master of Iowa, and a party consisting of L. H. McComas, D. F. Ward, H. R. Allabee and D. P. Jordan, all of whom are Past Masters or District Lecturers. E. K. Green of Clear Lake, formerly of Reinbeck, an old time friend of Mr. Kelly's, conducted the Masonic funeral service in compliance with a request made of him by Mr. Kelly a year ago.

Members of the W.R.C. present were: Elizabeth Kothe, Parkersburg, National Inspector; Theresa March, Department President of Iowa, and Orpha B. Turner, Department Secretary, both of Fairfield. Also Mrs. Maud Miller, State Director, Mrs. T. J. Noll and Miss Emma Noll of Grinnell; Mrs. F. S. Quade, Dubuque; also representatives of the order from Waterloo and Cedar Falls, and the local corps in a body.

Members of the Daughters of Union Veterans from the Jane Kirkwood Tent at Waterloo present were Mesdames C. C. Rieckhoff, President, J. H. Pickens, Beatrice Graham, Ruth Bojensta, N. W. Entwhister, Goldya Moody, George Carpenter, John Moore, L. B. Jones, Endore Keiderling, Myrtle Shannon, Winnie Eggleston, Alice Morgan, Nellie Morgan, L. May Rodenhaver, Mrs. Washburn, Miss Catherine Moore, Miss Claribel Morrison, Fairfield.

Department officers of the D.U.V. present were: Mrs. Julia Wanamaker, Dept. Pres., Miss Mabel Carrier, Dept. Secy., Mrs. Carrie Baker, Dept. Chaplain, Fairfield; Mrs. Arthur Carpenter, Dept. Inspector, Waterloo.

The Iowa Department, Ladies of the G.A.R., were represented by Mrs. Fannie B. Small, Clinton, President; Mrs. Ben Hesser, Waterloo, Senior Vice Pres.; Mrs. Charles Eaton, Waterloo, Chairman Council; Mrs. Herbert Mead, Waterloo, Past Dept. Treas.; Mrs. Charles Shupe, Past S.V.C.

It is estimated that more than 800 people attended the services.

--The Grundy Register (Grundy Center, Iowa), 8 August 1935, pg 1, 12


Grundy Obituaries maintained by Tammy D. Mount.
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