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Baker, Alanson Sr. 1828-1911


Posted By: Linda Ziemann, volunteer (email)
Date: 11/10/2010 at 11:30:28

Akron Register-Tribune
Thursday, November 2, 1911


The final summons came Tuesday, October 31, 1911, at 8:30 a.m. to Alanson
Baker Sr., one of the first pioneers of western Plymouth County. On
Wednesday night last week he was taken with a chill and bronchial pneumonia
developed. This, with heart trouble of long standing and advanced age,
formed a combination he could not long withstand he could not long
withstand, and he passed away at the age of 83 yrs, 1 month, and 5 days.

Alanson Baker was the son of John and Sarah (Loomis) Baker, natives,
respectively, of Vermont and Connecticut, and is the last of a family of ten
children. He was born in Tompkins county, New York, September 26, 1868
(correct 1828.) When he was two or three years of age, the family moved to
Allegany county, where he lived on a farm with them and attended school
until he was twenty-one years of age. He then went to the lumber woods of
Wisconsin and spent two years in work there. He then returned home, where
for two years he worked for his father, and the following year engaged in
lumbering in the Pennsylvania woods, spending one winter there. Then, in
1854, he came to Charles City, Ia., and purchased land near that city.
During the first summer, however, he worked for a farmer. The next year he
bought some stock, but spent most of his time in hunting. In the fall he had
the plague and could do nothing until the following spring, when he sold his
two hundred acres of land and started an ox-team of Sioux City, this being
in 1856.

Coming westward he passed through Spirit Lake, Iowa, where the following
year all the settlers were massacred by a band of renegade Sioux Indians
under Inkpadutah. In coming down the Big Sioux valley, he crossed at the
site of what is now Akron, and at that time there was not a house north of
here and only one, the Mills place, between this place and Sioux City.

While a resident of Sioux City, he engaged in land speculation to some
extent, but did little work until 1860, when he worked on a Missouri river
ferry boat, and during the winter cut wood around Covington. In the fall of
1857, he purchased 160 acres of fine Big Sioux valley land in sections 1 and
36, and two years later bought an additional 80 acres in section 1, all in
Portland township, Plymouth County, Iowa, part of the same being the present
home farm, for which he paid $2.50 per acre.

He continued to add to his holdings and has come to be considered one of the
heaviest property owners in this part of the country. The winter after
running the ferry boat, he spent in taking care of cattle about twenty miles
south of Sioux City. In 1857, he had received fifty dollars per month for
his labor, but soon the hard times came on and before leaving that part of
the country was obliged to work for twelve dollars per month. Having
considerable money out at interest, he lost about two thousand dollars
because of the hard times.

In October, 1862, Mr. Baker enlisted in Company I., Second Nebraska cavalry,
for nine months, and was discharged in December 1863. His company was in the
battle of White Stone Hill. After receiving his discharge, he returned to
New York and spent the winter with his parents, and in the spring went to
the Montana gold fields, where he engaged in mining, traveling and
prospecting for about two years. He then came to Winnebago Indian
reservation, in Nebraska, and worked in getting out logs and in a saw-mill
for eighteen months, and in the meantime purchased 140 acres of land. He
remained in that place until the Spring of 1873, when he came to the present

The first year he raised forty acres of wheat and broke forty acres and then
returned to Dakota County, Nebraska, and after remaining there that winter
returned to his farm here and put in eighty acres of crop. During the
grasshopper raids he was a heavy loser, but had abundant faith in the future
of this region and has reaped richly the reward of his foresight and

When he purchased the present home place the nearest neighbors were ten
miles distant. When he located here the town of Akron, adjoining his land on
the northeast, was just starting. In politics, Mr. Baker was a staunch
republican of the old school. He was a member of the Grand Army of the
Republic. A pioneer in carving this splendid domain from a virgin
wilderness, honorably and upright in all the affairs of life, he was held in
high respect by all who knew him.

In what is now South Sioux City, Nebraska, Mr. Baker and Miss Mary E. George
were united in marriage, Nov. 23, 1872. Their union was blessed with three
children—Sarah R. (Mrs. M. M. Talbott) and Alanson Jr., of this place, and
M. Avis (Mrs. Chas. L. Lockie), of Nashville, Tenn.—all of whom, with the
widow survive. They have the sympathy of the community in their bereavement.

Funeral services are to be held in the Akron Baptist church tomorrow
(Friday) afternoon at 2 o’clock. Interment will be Riverside cemetery.


Plymouth Obituaries maintained by Linda Ziemann.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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