Cerro Gordo County Iowa
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HISTORY of CERRO GORDO COUNTY, IOWA
WHEELER, J.H. Vol. II. Pp. 497-80. Lewis Pub. Co. Chicago. 1910

BIOGRAPHY ~ AMASA A. CROSSLEY

A man of intelligence and ability, Amasa A. Crossley, of Mason City, has always been the encourager and supporter of everything calculated to advance the welfare of his community, intellectually, socially and morally, and is held in high respect as a man and as a citizen. A son of A. A. Crossley, he was born January 29, 1848 in Crawford county, Pennsylvania. His father died four months previous to that event, in September, 1847, at the age of twenty-two years. Mr. Crossley's mother, whose maiden name was Delila Curtis, married for her second husband Ansel Harron, and in 1855 the family came westward to Wisconsin, where they lived three years. Coming to Cerro Gordo county, Iowa, in 1868, Mr. Harron bought wild land in Lime Creek township, and on the farm which he improved both he and his wife spent their remaining days, Mrs. Harron passing away in November 1887, at the age of sixty-five years, while Mr. Harron died in 1895, aged eighty-three years. By her second marriage Mrs. Harron had three children, as follows: Fred, living in Washington; L. C., of North Dakota; and Minnie, wife of Willard Pense, of Minnesota.

The only child of his parents, Amasa A. Crossley was reared to agricultural pursuits, after the age of eight years attending school but two terms. At the age of twelve years he was forced to shift for himself, being sent out to work among strangers. Becoming skilled in the various branches of agriculture, he began farming on his own account after his marriage, renting land in Olmstead county, Minnesota, for four years. Settling then in Lyon county, Minnesota, he took up a claim, but after battling with the grasshoppers for four years he gave up in despair and in the fall of 1876 came to Cerro Gordo county, Iowa, in search of a favorable location. Mr. Crossley here bought one hundred and sixty acres of land in section one, Bath township, a part of the land being broken but no further improvements on it. After carrying on general farming there for seven years he rented his property and took up his residence in Mason City, where he dealt extensively and profitably in live stock until 1898. Since that time, Mr. Crossley has been actively interested in the real estate and insurance business. A man of good business judgment, he has been uniformly successful in his operations, and is quite an extensive landholder, owning three hundred and twenty acres in Mason township.

Taking a warm interest in local affairs, Mr. Crossley was elected county supervisor in 1900, and served in that capacity seven years, during which time much money was wisely expended. The present county court house and county jail was erected at that time, with a record of expenditure probably unequaled, as under the direct supervision of Mr. Crossley ten thousand dollars less than the appropriation was expended on the two buildings, and not one dollar was given for extras in either. The concrete bridge on East State street was also built under his supervision, it being the third bridge of its kind erected in Iowa. Mr. Crossley having been the first to advocate the use of that material for country work in Cerro Gordo county. Mr. Crossley has also served as a member of the City Council.

Fraternally he is a member of Mason City Lodge, No. 224, I. O. O. F., of which he has been treasurer for twenty years, and of Anchor Encampment, No. 102. He is very prominent in the order, and as a trustee of the Odd Fellows' and Orphans' Home had the supervision of the erection of the present building, which was erected in 1904 to replace the one destroyed in that year by fire.

Mr. Crossley married July 12, 1869, Gertrude T. Van Fleet, who was born in Auburn, New York, April 7, 1850. Their only child, Frankie M., is the wife of Harry E. Evans, of Callaway, Nebraska.

NOTE: John Chilson was born in 1851 according to his gravestone, and died July 25, 1916. He was interred at Elmwood-St. Joseph Cemetery, Mason City IA

Transcription and note by Sharon R. Becker, January of 2014

 

 

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