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Posted By: Doretta Pimlott Cowman (email)
Date: 4/17/2013 at 08:15:08

The 1880 History of Poweshiek County Iowa

Sugar Creek Township

Page 694-5

STILWELL, ELIAS -- Farmer and stock-raiser, section 26, P.O. New Sharon. The subject of this sketch is one of the oldest and best known of the settlers of this section of the county. Although born poor he has, by dint of hard work and strict economy, succeeded in bringing up a large family and accumulating a nice fortune. He was born in Warren county, Ohio, on the 22nd of September, 1817, but while quite young his parents removed with him to Preble county, in that State, where he continued to live until the year 1838, when he removed to Randolph county, where he lived only eighteen months and then removed to Wayne county, in which county he continued to live until he came to Iowa, in the year 1857, which year he settled on the farm which he now occupies and owns. He has one of the finest stock farms in the whole county, consisting of five hundred and sixty-five acres of splendid land, laying in the valley of the Skunk River, and through which the Iowa Central Railroad passes. His farm is all nicely improved and well fenced and well stocked, with horses, hogs and cattle. He was married on the 28th day of December, 1836, to Hannah A. Horner, with whom he lived and labored until July, 1877, when she died, and by whom he has had thirteen children, eight of whom are still living: Benjamin (born in Preble county, Ohio, October 3, 1837), Obadiah (born January 29, 1840), William E. (born May 3, 1841), Mary A. (born October 29, 1843), Helen M. (born December 16, 1845), Sarah J. (born December 16, 1847), Emeline (born March 23, 1849), Prudence (born April 25, 1851), Lydia E. (born March 24, 1855), Alice B. (born September 21, 1857), John A. (born December 13, 1858), Gideon Wilson (born July 4, 1861), James (born October 11, 1864). Mr. Stilwell is a member of the A.F.&A.M., which order he joined in his twenty-eighth year, at Webb lodge, in Richmond, Indiana. He is now a member of La Fayette lodge, in Montezuma. Of his ancestry he knows but little but desires to have what he does know preserved for his children. Elias Stilwell, grandfather of the above, lived near where the battle of Monmouth was fought, and during the progress of the battle he climbed up into a tree in order to witness the fight, which he could plainly see, and while earnestly engaged in watching the progress of the fight he heard a whizzing noise in the branches of the tree, and on looking up saw an eighteen pound ball sticking in the fork of the tree. The old man "concluded that direction was the better part of valor," and came down. Obadiah, the father of Elias, of this sketch, was born on the same farm where the above mentioned circumstance occurred, about the year 1777, where he remained until he was twenty-two years of age, when he, in company with two brothers and a sister, all single, removed to Warren county, Ohio, which country was then a wild and uncultivated winderness. Here in Warren county he was married to Miss Peggie Francis, who was born in Monmouth county, New Jersey, on the 27th of September, 1791, which union was blesssed by eight children, five sons and three daughters: Elias, Helen A., Edeiga F., Ellen, Willilam, Obadiah, Lydia and James.


Poweshiek Biographies maintained by Cindy Booth Maher.
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