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Reeves, Thomas John


Posted By: Linda Ziemann, volunteer
Date: 1/6/2009 at 09:00:09

A Narrative History
The People of Iowa
Curator of the
Historical, Memorial and Art Department of Iowa Volume IV THE AMERICAN HISTORICAL SOCIETY, Inc.
Chicago and New York

THOMAS JOHN REEVES, clerk of the District Court at Orange City, has spent a long and active life in Northwestern Iowa, and enjoys a place of special regard in Sioux County, the people of which have chosen him five successive times to his present office.

Mr. Reeves was born at Kaneville in Kane County, Illinois, December 5, 1856, a son of Stephen and Abigail (Snell) Reeves, his father a native of England and his mother of New York State. Thomas John Reeves was twelve years old when his parents moved to Iowa, in 1868. He had attended Illinois schools and finished his education after coming to Iowa.

When he was about sixteen years of age he went to work as clerk in a drug store, studied pharmacy largely by practical experience, and in 1878 was registered as a pharmacist. In the same year he opened a business of his own at Seney, Iowa, and was the local druggist of that community for ten years. He was also appointed postmaster in 1878, and held this office all the ten years he was in the general mercantile and drug business there. On selling his interest at Seney Mr. Reeves moved, in 1888, to Earlville, Iowa, where he was in the drug business one year, in 1888 located at Racine, Wisconsin, and soon afterward took up a Government homestead in Northwestern Nebraska, but in 1891 returned to Iowa and settled on a farm at Westfield. In the spring of 1892 he bought a farm in South Dakota and was a part of the rural community and the agricultural life of the state for thirteen years.

On returning to Iowa Mr. Reeves settled at Hawarden in Sioux County, and in
1904 he and his nephew, S. W. Harker, engaged in the drug business. Their partnership continued for ten years, and when Mr. Reeves sold out, in November, 1914, he retired from business except for the supervision of his private interests and has had time to devote to the duties of public office. Mr. Harker still continues in business, with G. F. Burket.

Mr. Reeves was city clerk of Hawarden from 1907 to 1923. On January 1, 1923, he took up his duties as clerk of the District Court at Orange City and is now serving in his fifth term. While living in South Dakota he was for twelve years, 1893-1904, a justice of the peace. He is a Republican in politics, is a member of the Masonic fraternity, having attained the thirty-second degree and being a life member of the Grand Lodge, and a member of the Mystic Shrine. He is a past junior grand warden of the Grand Lodge of Iowa, and district lecturer of the Grand Lodge. He is also a member of the Knights of Pythias, the Lions Club and of the American Reformed Church. He has the honor, too, of being president of the County Clerks Association of Iowa.

Mr. Reeves married at Seney, Iowa, September 5, 1878, Miss Jennie L. March, daughter of John March. Mr. and Mrs. Reeves lived together for nearly half a century, until the death of his wife on May 14, 1926. She was the mother of three daughters. Pearl B., the oldest, was born June, 1879, and died in November, 1882. Maude, born in July, 1881, is the wife of A. L. Bennett, of Hawarden, Iowa, and has two children, Marian, born in 1911, graduated from high school in 1929 and is now a stenographer at Hawarden, and Duane K., born in 1913, graduated from high school in 1930. The other daughter is Miss Mae, born in 1895, now deputy clerk of the District Court under her father. She married, May 2, 1930, Arthur Z. Kubicek, of Tama, Iowa, now an electrician at Orange City.

~Transcribed by Debbie Clough Gerischer, of the Iowa History Project


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