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William Dixon


Posted By: Karon Velau (email)
Date: 3/2/2023 at 23:22:03


William Dixon, now deceased, was a representative farmer of Worth county and one of its honored pioneer settlers who, coming to this section at an early day, contributed to the later development and progress of the county especially along the line of agricultural development. He was born in Westmoreland, England, February 14, 1831, his parents being also natives of that district, where they spent their entire lives.
The boyhood and youth of William Dixon were passed in England and after acquiring his education he concentrated his attention upon farm work. In 1865, however, he bade adieu to friends and native country, determined to try his fortune in the new world, owing to the favorable reports which reached him concerning the opportunities here offered. Crossing the Atlantic, he made his way to Iowa and established his home in Grove township. Here he invested in one hundred and sixty acres of land, constituting the farm upon which his widow now resides. With characteristic energy he began to till the soil and brought his fields under a high state of cultivation, while to the farm he added many modern improvements. In the early days there were many hardships and privations to be borne, for this was still a frontier district when the family took up its abode within the borders of the county, the nearest market at that time being McGregor, about one hundred miles away.
The year prior to his emigration to America Mr. Dixon was married to Miss Mary Nelson, a daughter of Peter and1 Mary (Peters) Nelson. She was born near Stockholm, Sweden, and her parents were also natives of that country. They came to the United States in 1854, crossing the Atlantic in a sailing vessel which was six weeks in reaching the American port. From the eastern coast they traveled to Monroe, Wisconsin, and from that point they made the journey by wagon to Grove township, Worth county. The father was at the time yet a young but not a strong man and the trip proved too strenuous for him, the hardships endured causing his death soon after his arrival. His widow later married William Burgett and they subsequently moved to California but in later years returned to Worth county and here Mrs. Burgett passed away at the home of a daughter, at the age of eighty-seven years. Upon the farm on which they first located, Mr. and Mrs. Nelson erected a log house, which was their first shelter and home in Iowa.
To Mr. and Mrs. Dixon were born nine children of whom four are living: Ida J., the wife of Ed Bolton; William R.; Mrs. William Pixley; and Edward. The sons have added to the home farm which the father purchased, buying eighty acres of land adjoining, also forty acres lying to the north and one hundred sixty acres in Hartland township on the Shellrock river. They are enterprising and progressive farmers and leading business men of their community and are capable of carrying forward the work which was begun by Mr. Dixon. The family circle was broken by the hand of death when in 1899 William Dixon departed this life at the age of sixty-eight years. He was a democrat in his political views and he held the office of assessor. He was also school secretary and was much interested in the cause of education, to which he gave stalwart support. His life was a busy and useful one and the traits of character which he displayed were those which commended him to the confidence, goodwill and high regard of all with whom he was brought in contact.
Transcription by Gordon Felland, 9/14/2006

In October, 2015, I obtained additional information in an email from Fran Pixley, regarding the 5 children who died in the above biography. Fran obtained the information from a history written by Gladys Pixly, a neice to Ed.

In June of 1890 the family contracted a sickness (not know if it was diphtheria or another disease) but it took five small children; Arthur, Carrie, Hattie V., Bertram and Albert. It was said the people seen lanterns in Stateline cemetery late at night, as the family buried their young to keep out more sickness. Mary (Mamie) Dixon Pixley was with a family that boarded out the school teacher, and she was not allowed to come home to help the family with their grief, She married William Henry Pixly March 20, 1894 and they had 3 children, Linn and the twins, Glenn N. and Gladys, born in 1899. Glenn was my husband's grandfather.

See the list of burials for Stateline Cemetery which gives the birth and death dates for the 5 Dixon children who died.


Worth Biographies maintained by Karon S. Velau.
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