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HOSTETLER, John - 1890 Bio (1810-1905)


Posted By: Joey Stark
Date: 8/11/2007 at 08:54:49

Portrait and Biographical Album of Jefferson and Van Buren Counties, Iowa, Printed 1890 by Lake City Publishing Co., Chicago
Pages 357-358

John HOSTETLER, a representative farmer residing on section 10, Lockridge Township, Jefferson County, has been a witness of the growth of Iowa during almost its entire existence as a State and in the onward march of progress has been found in the front ranks. France is the land of his nativity and September, 1810, the date of his birth. His parents, Peter and Margaret HOSTETLER were born and reared in the same neighborhood in France. The father died when John was about nine months old and he was left an orphan at the age of sixteen. Six children were born unto that worthy couple but only two of the number are now living. Anna died in France; Barbara, widow of Jacob EICHER, is living in Washington County, Iowa; Abraham died in Henry County; Peter and Christian died in France; and John completes the family.

The life of our subject has been one of unremitting toil until within the past few years, when, having acquired a competency, he is enabled to lay aside the more arduous labors and enjoy the fruits of former service. He began to make his own way in the world at the early age of ten years, when he commenced to work at herding sheep which he continued some five years. In 1825, a lad of fifteen summers, he began the weaver's trade which he followed until his emigration to America in 1837. Attracted by the opportunities afforded young men for advancement in that country, he braved the dangers of an ocean voyage in the slow moving sail vessels which then took passengers across the Atlantic, and embarked for the New World. He made his first location in Wayne County, Ohio, where for a year he followed his trade of weaving. He then engaged in various pursuits whereby he might earn an honest dollar, including wood chopping and other laborious tasks. Some ten years passed by in that way and in 1848, proceeding by river, he came to the new State of Iowa and from the Government purchased one hundred and sixty acres of wild land on section 10, Lockridge Township. His first home, a log cabin, still continues to be his place of residence but in his farm great changes have taken place. The land, which at the time of his purchase was covered with brush and timber, has all been cleared and plowed and its boundaries have been extended, until now three hundred and one acres pay tribute to his care and cultivation.

In the year of his arrival in Iowa, Mr. HOSTETLER led to the marriage altar Miss Fannie ERNST, a native of Germany who bore him one child but both mother and babe were laid away in the same grave. In 1857, he formed a matrimonial alliance with Catherine BOSSARD, a native of France, and unto them have been born six children, four of whom are yet living. Joseph, the eldest of the family, who was born April 18, 1858, is now renting the old homestead and in the operation of the farm displays excellent business ability. He is an intelligent, enterprising young man who already has won an honored place in the regard of his many friends. He possesses the energy, thrift and other necessary qualifications which in time will secure him a position in the front rank of his fellow citizens, and the high esteem of his friends will ever remain with him. The younger children of the family are Katie, who was born August 10, 1859, and is now the wife of Chris MOWERY, of Davis County, Iowa; John, who was born March 12, 1861, and is now located in Oregon; and Sarah, at home. Her birth occurred May 18, 1866, and the two other children of the family died in youth.

Mr. HOSTETLER is a friend of education and provided his children with such advantages as would fit them for the practical duties of life. He and his family beonged to the Omish Church and in politics, he has ever supported the Democratic party but has never been a politician in the sense of office seeking. Many changes have occurred since he came to the county, at which time Iowa gave little promise of her present prosperity. In this neighborhood game of all kinds was to be found in abundance and furnished many a meal for the settlers; the great part of the land was still unclaimed and the homes of the pioneers were widely scattered. No one feels greater pride in the advancement which has been made than Mr. HOSTETLER, who for forty-two years has resided in Jefferson County.

*Transcribed for genealogy purposes; I have no relation to the person(s) mentioned.


Jefferson Biographies maintained by Joey Stark.
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