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Jonas Cleven Family

John Danks, a native of Shropshire Province, Parish of Mallery, England, after a quarrel with his father over business matters, took passage for America with his wife and three children in 1823. He immediately bought land in Venango County, Pennsylvania. His oldest son, Peter, married Ellen Penman, who had come to America with her father in the same year. After the death of John, Peter sold the farm, and formed a company of seven men, who bought coal rights in land south of Pittsburgh. They built their homes along the Monongahela River and, like other early settlers in other areas, called their settlement "String Town."

Peter was killed in a mine explosion and his wife, Ellen, and her seven children then came to Iowa and purchased land near Monroe. Her son, William, married Marilla Mather. William and Marilla became the parents of Mabel Cleven.

Mabel's mother's family came from Kentucky, and were slave owners there. Mabel is the 10th generation descendant, on her mother's side, of Richard Mather, the famous clergyman of Massachusetts Bay Colony. Jonas Cleven, the son of Mr. and Mrs. C. J. Cleven, came to America from Sweden when he was five years old.

After living at 232 South Water Street in Madrid, where they operated a dairy store, the Clevens bought the Cassel house, at 415 West Second Street, where they now reside. The Cassel house was built in 1862, and is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The Clevens are parents of three children: Merle Jenkins Reedholm, who is deceased; Judy Cleven Hyde; and David Cleven.

Merle and her husband, Robert Reedholm, were parents of three children: Sonia (Mrs. Michael Bell), of Boone, who is a secretary at the health clinic; Joe, an electrical engineer; and Robert, who is associated with his father in the Zenith T.V. business.

Judy and her husband have two daughters. Daughter Lori is a buyer for Target Stores in Dallas, and daughter Sue is a computer analyst for Texas Instruments. Judy is a librarian for the public schools in Richardson, Texas.

David, who also lives in Dallas, is a piano tuner and an accomplished musician.

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