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Posted By: County Coordinator (email)
Date: 9/25/2021 at 20:05:20

JAMES H. ANDERSON, of Keokuk, Iowa, attorney at law, occupies a high position in his profession in the Hawkeye State, of which he has been a resident since 1856. He received his primary education in the public schools of Keokuk, and thereafter for a time remained with his father upon the farm in Clark County, Mo. He has been a man of varied experiences. He was studious in his youth and keenly observant, and made the most of his opportunities, and the position which he now occupies has been secured mainly by his own enterprise, industry, and the improvement of the talents which nature bestowed upon him.

The subject of our sketch was born at Cincinnati, Ohio, May 30, 1842, and his parents were Robert James and Mary J. (Whitney) Anderson. At the age of fourteen years, accompanied by his father and his father's brother, they started West, crossed the Father of Waters and located at Keokuk. After a time he was joined by his father's family, and in 1860 removed upon a farm. The following year the notes of war began to sound throughout the land, and at the first call for troops he determined to become a soldier for the Union. He accordingly enlisted. May 25, 1861, and became a member of the Northeastern Missouri Volunteers, under the command of Col. Woodyard, and served with his regiment until October of that year, when he was taken prisoner by the rebels in Missouri and paroled. The next year he went into active service in the Missouri State Guards, with whom he remained during 1862. In the following spring he returned to Keokuk, and in 1863 he crossed the plains to Colorado, driving an ox-team, and returned to Keokuk in the spring of 1864.

In that same year Mr. A. re-enlisted and was mustered into service in Company C, 45th Iowa, as a private, serving in Tennessee during the summer. He received his discharge in the fall of that year, and returning to Keokuk commenced reading law under the instruction of Hon. J. H. Craig. He continued his studies for two years thereafter, and was admitted to the bar in 1866, at Keosauqua, Iowa. The following year he became associated in partnership with Robert H. Gilmore, the firm existing until the time of Mr. Gilmore's death, in 1881. Mr. Anderson then became associated with his brother, Joseph G., until 1885, since which time he has carried on his professional business alone.

In March. 1868, James H. Anderson was united in marriage with Miss Anna, daughter of Lewis and Ann (Harper) Riggs. Mrs. Anderson was born in Brookville. Ind., May 2, 1816, and of their union have been born five children, two of whom died in early childhood. The three living are Edwin G., born in 1872; Bessie. in 1878, and David F., in 1882.

Mr. Anderson has been actively engaged in the duties of his profession since 1867, and has taken a hearty interest in all public enterprises, or whatever might become of benefit to his county or community. He has aided materially in the industrial interests of this section, and has contributed cheerfully of his time and money to the bringing about of various public improvements. He has erected ten buildings, which are among the handsomest in the city, and mainly to his efforts is due the building of the driveway around the city, the building of the North road, the water-works, the street railway, and the institution of the public park. He is the President of the Keokuk street railway, and a Director in the Opera House Company. He was also Vice President and General Manager of the Keokuk & Northwestern Railway during the building of that road, and was for many years a Director of the St. Louis, Keokuk it Northwestern Railroad. He was President of the Water-Works Company during the construction of their works, and for many years was a Director in the State National Bank, also a Director of the Keokuk Northern Line Packet Company.

In politics Mr. Anderson formerly- voted the Republican ticket, but in 1868 he considered he had reason to change his political views, and since that time has usually supported the principles and voted for the candidates of the Democratic party. Although prominent in local politics he has steadily declined to become a candidate for any office.

It will thus be seen that Mr. Anderson has added greatly' to the progress and development of Lee County, and especially of its largest city. It is by the efforts of such men as he that Iowa has attained to her present proud position among the States west of the Mississippi, and the record of their lives will stand in these monuments of wood and iron long after their projector has passed away.

Transcription typed/proofed as article was originally published in 1887


Lee Biographies maintained by Sherri Turner.
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