Posted By: Linda Ziemann, Plym. CC (email)
Date: 3/19/2005 at 12:59:06
James McCartney, a well-known retires farmer of Kingsley, this county, and an honored veteran of the Civil War, was born in Chester county Pennsylvania,on April 1, 1842, the son of Nicholas and Catherine ( Hibbert ) McCartney. Nicholas McCarntey was born in Ireland, of Scotch-Irish descent. At the ageof twelve years he came to the United States and for a time worked on a farmfor his Uncle in Ohio, after which he took up residence in Chester county, Pennsylvania, where he worked in a factory. He married Catherine Hibbert in Philadelphia and some years later, with his family, came to Iowa, locating in Delaware County in the fall of 1856. Their established their home on a farmand there the parents resided for many years. The father was a member of the Presbyterian church, while the mother held membership in the Episcopal church. They were the parents of eight children, William, John, James, Robert, Nicholas,David, Mary and Ellen.
James McCartney was but a lad when he came to Iowa with his parents and hisyoung manhood was spent on the farm. He served as a soldier during the CivilWar and was married in Jones county to Alice C. Croston and in 1866 came to Plymouth County, where he engaged in general farming and stock raising for manyyears, after which he retired from active duties on the farm and moved to Kingsley,where he now resides. During his active life Mr. McCartney was for twelve yearsengaged in the buying of grain and he also spent some time in California. Fora time he lived at Le Mars and for five years was a resident of Cass county, Missouri, when he devoted much of his time to the chicken business. When he first came to Plymouth county, Mr. McCartney homesteaded one hundred and sixtyacres in Union township, which he developed and improved, becoming on of the successful men of that section of the county. He took much interest in local affairs and for some years served his township as trustee. He and his wife always took interest in the services of the Methodist Episcopal church of whichthey where members.
During the Civil War Mr. McCartney demonstrated his patriotism by enlisting in the service of the Union Army in 1862 and served until the end of the war. He was assigned to Company K, twenty-first regiment, where he was wounded three times within an hour, bullets taking affect in the arm, leg, and stomach. In addition to the Vicksburg campaign, he saw much active service throughout that memorable struggle. At the close of the war he returned to Iowa and was one of the very first settlers in the county, where he lived for so many years. Hestill remembers distinctly having killed elk, deer, wild turkey and other gamewhere the town of Kingsley now stands. At that time Sioux City was the nearestmarket of importance, and the only means of transportation over the prairie trailsat that time was with an ox-team, slow and uncertain. Today, where now are well-cultivated fields of growing grain, substantial and modern farm buildings, schools,and churches, there waved then the tall prairie grass, broken here and there by the sod house or a little shanty, built of logs or rough boards. The primitive house in which Mr. McCartney and his wife lived would not turn rain, and they had to use an umbrella to keep the water of the bed while they slept. Mr. McCartney broke the first ground on hi farm with on-team and his first help was an Indian with his squaw, who helped him with his harvest. It is need-less to say that such help was not at all times the most satisfactory, yet it wasthe best that could be had in those days. Such was the life experience by manyof the early settlers of this section, who have taken such an important part in the transformation of the wild prairie into the well-cultivated fields of today.
History of Plymouth County, Iowa
Indianapolis, Ind.: B. F. Bowen, 1917
Plymouth Biographies maintained by Linda Ziemann.
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