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McCorkell, Joseph


Posted By: Linda Linn (email)
Date: 11/13/2009 at 10:03:34

Joseph McCorkell I was born on July 28, 1835 in County Armagh Northern Ireland or Paisley, Scotland. He was the fifth child of David II and Mary Watts McCorkell. In about September 1853, Joseph immigrated to the United States to join his brother James and his family in Philadelphia. Another brother, Robert, had apparently already moved to Iowa. His oldest brother Leonard and his sister Mary remained in Ireland with their parents.

In 1854 Joseph and James and his family emigrated to Iowa, but soon went to Goodhue County Minnesota to join Robert who had homesteaded there. Joseph McCorkell took a claim to land north of James and Agnes' at the same time. They were the second settlers in Stanton Township.

Joseph declared his intent to become a naturalized citizen of the United States on May 19, 1856 in the United States First Judicial District Court of Minnesota Territory, in and for the County of Goodhue. Sometime between 1856 and 1858, Joseph left Minnesota and moved to Dubuque, Iowa. His farm then became part of James and Agnes' farm.

Early in life Joseph McCorkell followed the carpenter trade, being a contractor and builder, but he later engaged in farming. He married Mary Jane Moore on September 25, 1856 in Anamosa, Jones County Iowa. They lived in Dallas County, Iowa for a number of years, where their seven children were born: Elliott, Robert, Howard, Joseph, Elizabeth, Walter, and Lutie.

A railroad company was to build tracks on the land homesteaded by Joseph, but instead joined tracks on another railroad. The land then returned to the government. After hearing this, Joseph and his two sons, Elliot and Robert, drove a team of horses from the DesMoines Area homestead to Plymouth County, Iowa near Akron in 1884. Each homesteaded a farm there. Joseph homesteaded the northeast quarter of Section 13, Portland Township 93. Being a carpenter, he built a house and stable, as well as breaking some ground. The improvements amounted to $400.00. The sons stayed on their land and Joseph went by train to get his family, returning with them by July 1884. By 1887, he had a frame house 33 by 33 feet, granary, barn, corncrib, well, and pumps--70 rods of ditching, 180 acres of breaking, 20 acres of pasture, making the value $785.00. He owned 16 horses, 20 cattle, and 30 hogs. He had raised 45 bushels of wheat and 359 bushels of flax in 1885.

Joseph died February 18, 1909 and is buried at Riverside Cemetery at Akron beside his wife Mary Jane who died on September 01, 1930.

Photograph of the Joseph McCorkell family:
Back Row: Walter, Joseph, Howard
Middle Row: Elliot, (Parents)Joseph (McCorkle)McCorkell and Mary Jane Moore McCorkell,Robert
Front Row: Elizabeth, Louisa "Lutie"


Plymouth Biographies maintained by Linda Ziemann.
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