Cerro Gordo County Iowa
Part of the IaGenWeb Project



History of Lake Township
Cerro Gordo County, Iowa

The Island, Clear Lake, 1907

Lake township originally took in all the northern part of Cerro Gordo county; embracing a territory twenty-four miles north and south, by nine miles east and west. In 1865 Clear Lake township was set off from Lake, and in 1883 the township contained congressional township 96, range 21 west, and was bounded on the north by Lincoln [township], on the east by Mason [township], on the south by Mount Vernon [township] and on the west by Clear Lake township. Lake is a beautiful agricultural district, which in 1883 contained some uncultivated land, but was fast developing. Willow creek and its numerous tributaries water the township. The main stream being the outlet of Clear Lake, passes through the township, from section 18, in a northeastern direction, making its exit from section 1, and from there runs southeast to a point just east of Mason City, where it unites with Lime creek.

There are beautiful native groves on sections 7 and 18, besides a portion of what is called east grove, which is situated about three miles southeast of the lake. At an early day there was considerable timber in the northern part of the township, a portion of which was cut off by early settlers. There are now many cultivated groves in the township which serve admirably as wind breakers in winter time, and lend picturesque beauty to the scene in the summer. The Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway passes through the township from east to west, with a station near the line between Lake and Clear Lake townships, at the town of Clear Lake.

Clear Lake Depot, circa 1911


The first actual settler, in what is now Lake township, was James DICKIRSON in 1852. He settled on section 7, and built the first house in the township.

James SIRRINE, of Clear Lake, is one of the oldest settlers, not only of Clear Lake, but of Cerro Gordo county. He came here in 1853, and entered six forties, four of which were on section 13, at the east end of the lake, where he now resides. Mr. SIRRINE was born at Peekskill, N. Y., in 1811. His father removed to Pennsylvania, when James was a child, and settled in Pike county in that State. He was reared in Pennsylvania, married and returned to the State of New York, where he lived thirteen years. He then removed to Illinois, where he lived two years, then came to Iowa. His father settled near him, where he resided until 1878, when he removed to Minnesota.

But few families were living in Cerro Gordo county when Mr. SIRRINE came here. DICKIRSON and HEWITT, the earliest settlers of the county, had been here but two or three years. One by one, the pioneers are passing away and Mr. SIRRINE is one of the few who are left of those who laid the foundation of a home here thirty years ago. Mr. SIRRINE married Susan REESE, born in New York; she died here in 1859. His present wife was born in Indiana. Mr. SIRRINE had five children by his first wife, three of whom are living Robert, Frederick and Stephen. James and David were soldiers in the army of the Union during the rebellion; the former was a member of the 12th United States Regulars, and was killed at the battle of the Wilderness; the latter was a member of the same regiment, and was killed accidentally at Fort Hamilton.

TRANSCRIBER'S NOTE: James S. SIRRINE was born Febuary 10, 1811, and died February 22, 1894. Susan C. (REESE) was born February 25, 1814, and died December 4, 1859. David SIRRINE was born February 25, 1843, and died March 12, 1863. James J. SIRRINE was born April 11, 1841, and died July 27, 1864. They were interred at Clear Lake Cemetery, Clear Lake, Iowa.

Robert SIRRINE, the oldest son, was born in McHenry Co., ILL., in 1837, and came to this county with his father. He is one of the most prosperous and substantial farmers of Lake township. He resides on section 16, where he has a fine farm of 160 acres; he also owns another farm of 160 acres on section 21. He married Martha DENSLOW, daughter of John DENSLOW. She was born in Linn Co. Iowa.

The next to come in were Mr. RICE and Mr. ALLOWAY. No others came until 1855, during which year the following became settlers: Hiram A. STILES, Rowland GARDNER, Harvey LUCAS, E. A. TUTTLE, Andrew BUTTERFIELD, William WILSON, Abram BENNETT, Peter PARRISH, James B. WOOD and Charles A. MEDDAUGH.

Hiram STILES settled on section 6, where he remained about five years and removed to Hancock county and later, to Wabaunsee Co., Kan.

Elon A. TUTTLE is one of the pioneers of Cerro Gordo county, and resides on section 9, of Lake township. He was born in 1823, in Herkimer Co., N. Y., where he grew to manhood, and was married, after which he went to Cortland county, and there resided twelve years. In 1855, in company with his brother Marcus, and their respective families, Mr. TUTTLE removed to Johnson Co., Iowa, remaining there but a brief period, and the same season they made their way to Cerro Gordo county. Here Mr. TUTTLE purchased forty acres of land on section 7, of James DICKIRSON, the first he owned in the township and which was the nucleus of a farm including 300 acres on which he was resident many years, and which, under his management,became one of the model places in the county, adorned with a most enviable home. Associated with his brothers, Marcus and A. B. TUTTLE, he entered a claim of 500 acres, and the same season drew the lumber for his first house from Iowa City. The same fall he built his residence and moved his family from Johnson county. This was the first frame house in what is now Lake township. The wife of Mr. TUTTLE was Orrissa C. HUMPHREYVILLE, born in Herkimer Co., N. Y., in 1823, and died May 14, 1880 [illegible]. Six of Mr. TUTTLE'S seven children are living Nellie, wife of A. T. HOTELLING; Ilattie (deceased); Sylvia, wife of Rev. George A. CRESSEY, resident at Huron, Dakota; Adelmer M., practicing physician at Britt and Lucien, also living in Britt, Hancock county; Nettie, wife of D. D. HOWE, of Britt; Sophia, wife of David HOWE, a resident of Mandan, Dakota.

Mr. TUTTLE and his brothers are popularly and widely known as pioneers of Cerro Gordo county, and rank among the promoters of progress and growth to a fair position among the best counties of the State. A. B. TUTTLE resides at Mason City; Marcus TUTTLE has settled in Clay county. After the death of his wife, Mr. TUTTLE sold his homestead farm, and has since resided on a quarter section of which he became proprietor in 1855, and on which he built a pleasant home.

TRANSCRIBER'S NOTE: A. B., Marcus and Elon Augustus TUTTLE were the sons of Ira and Lucy (BROCKETT) TUTTLE. Elon was born January 7, 1823, Salisbury Center, Herkimer County, New York, and died January 7, 1908, with interment at Clear Lake Cemetery, Clear Lake, Iowa. His first wife, Orissa Caroline (HUMPHREYVILLE) TUTTLE, was born January 20, 1823, New York state, and died at Clear Lake, May 14, 1880. his second wife, Anna (PARSONS) TUTTLE, was born November 8, 1836, and died September 8, 1907. Orissa and Anna were interred at Clear Lake Cemetery.

Marcus TUTTLE, born May 19, 1830, Fairfield, Herkimer County, New York. He married on February 4, 1851 Caroline M. WARNER, and they had four children: Jessie, born April 27, 1856; Rose, born October 24, 1857; Frank M., born May 1860; and Anna Lucy, born September 1868. Marcus served in the Iowa State Senate 1867 - 1871 and was also a county judge. Marcus and James DICKIRSON laid out the town of Clear Lake. He died January 8, 1884, Clear Lake, and was interred at Clear Lake Cemetery. Carolyn M. (WARNER) TUTTLE was born July 9, 1827, Otselic, Chenango County, New York, and died at Spencer, Iowa, on May 22, 1905. She was interred at Clear Lake Cemetery.

Jessie TUTTLE, daughter of Marcus and Carolyn M. (WARNER) TUTTLE, born April 27, 1856, died at the age of 8 months and 17 days on January 3, 1857. She was the first interment in Clear Lake Cemetery.

Alvah B. TUTTLE, born January 24, 1825, died September 20, 1898. He was interred at Elmwood-St. Joseph Cemetery, Mason City, Iowa.

Joseph WOOD was born in Fayette Co., Penn., in 1804. His parents were not possessed of much of this world's goods, and the untimely death of his father left his mother with five little children dependent upon her for support. She fulfilled this duty as best she could and kept her family together until her son Joseph was eight-years-old, when she was obliged to place him according to circumstances. He spent his life in this way until nearly fourteen-years-old, when he put into practice a resolution to test the innate manhood he believed himself to possess, and set out to meet more than half way his struggle with life. The small pack of his possessions placed on his back was lighter than his heart, as he bade good-bye to his friends and youthful associations, and set 79 miles. He had but a few shillings, and made the route with the utmost possible self-denial, eating but four meals. Reaching Perry Co., Ohio, nature succumbed; he was too nearly starved to make further progress. This was in 1817; the country was well nigh a wilderness of primeval forest, and the settlers had but little to eat save corn and the wild meat which rewarded the hunter's toil. But they divided food and hearthstone with the forlorn boy, and he resolved to rest his travel-weary feet for a time, if he could find anything to aid in self-sustaining. He engaged to work for a shoemaker for the necessaries of life, in order to learn the trade. Food, clothes and instruction ranked alike in value, but he managed to go to school for three months of the year he stayed with this man, and obtained a slight knowledge of reading and spelling. He believed the future held a better fate for him, and once more he essayed a foot journey, with his knapsack on his back. He halted at Johnstown, Licking Co., Ohio, and worked there for eight and ten dollars a month until he was twenty-four years of age. He was married at twenty-one, and in less than three years, he was a widower with two young children to care for. His small savings were exhausted by the expenses of his wife's illness and burial, and he was forced to begin anew. After a time he again married. At thirty-two,having saved a litttle money, he removed with his family to Indiana. He was frugal and industrious, and in 1855 was enabled to come to Iowa.

He made his claim on section 25, township 96, range 22, about a mile from Clear Lake. The severe winter of 1856-7 discouraged him and he went to Missouri and Kansas, where he stayed about two years, when, impelled by sickness, he returned and re-occupied his claim, of which happily, he had not disposed, and here has his lot been cast. He stands among the best citizens. The traits which characterized his independent spirit in boyhood, have made him a valuable acquisition to the community where he has spent the strength of his manhood's years. His farm is under fine improvements, stocked with horses and cattle he has abundance of small and other fruits, and in his transactions with the community he is deservedly popular and trusted. Of a family of ten children, resulting from his second marriage, but three are living James B., Mrs. Eunice HAYDEN and Mrs. Sarah STEVENS, all of whom are settled near their father, and are in easy circumstances. Mrs. Catharine McKINNEY is a daughter of Mrs. Wood by a former marriage. Peter R. WOOD, another son, laid his life upon his country's altar. He was sergeant in the 32d Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and was mortally wounded at the battle of Pleasant Hill, La.

Father WOOD is a fine sample of the element that forced its way into the western wilds, and hewed success from the resources of the wilderness. His history proves the folly of the times. Nearly eighty-years-old, his judgment is still sound, his mental and moral strength firm, and the iron resolution that cast aside the misfortunes of his youth, is still unbroken. He lives with his wife in a green old age, passing down life's western slope, flooded with a brightness reflected from his noble and well-spent life, as fresh and rosy as the halo of the dawn that blesses the world in the mornings early June.

James B. WOOD, of the firm of WOOD & BERKLEY, wagon makers, was born in Henry Co., Ind., Nov. 10, 1839. He married Mary DENSLOW, whose father was among the first settlers of Cedar county. He died at Council Bluffs about the year 1850, while en route for California.

Charles A. MEDDAUGH is the son of Peter MEDDAUGH, who settled with his family in Cerro Gordo county, in June, 1855. The elder MEDDAUGH was a native of Poughkeepsie, N, Y., born July 4, 1795. He was of Dutch descent; his grandparents having come to this country from Holland many years prior to the Revolution. He was a harness maker and saddler by trade, and was engaged in this occupation before coming to Iowa. On his arrival in the State he bought a quarter section claim in the present township of Lime Creek, whose present owner is John D. GLASS. His wife was also born in Duchess county, and after the death of her husband returned to the State of New York. She died there in Tompkins county, Feb. 20, 1882. Four of the six children of Mr. and Mrs. MEDDAUGH are still living - James resides in Florida; Mrs. Rebecca ROBINSON in Broome Co,, N. Y.; Mrs. Lydia BULL, in Tompkins Co., N. Y.; and C. A. MEDDAUGH, of this sketch.

The latter [Charles A. MEDDAUGH] is third in the order of succession, and was born in Tompkins county in 1841. He married [October 21, 1867] a daughter of the Buckeye State Margaret G. EMSLEY. Her father died in her childhood, in Ohio, and her step-father, James SPEERS, was an early settler in Cerro Gordo county. He died in Clear Lake township, in 1869. Her mother lives at Clear Lake. Mr. and Mrs. MEDDAUGH have two sons Lofton A. born in Florida, Aug. 19, 1870, and Karl E., born Oct. 30, 1879. Thomas G. EMSLEY, of Mason City, is a brother of Mrs. MEDDAUGH. Mr. MEDDAUGH has been much of his life engaged in teaching, and is still interested in all educational matters. He deals to some extent in school furniture, although his chief occupation is farming. In 1866 he went to Florida where he passed four years. He resides at Clear Lake, and owns a fine farm of 200 acres in Grant township, also a 430 acre farm in Florida.

TRANSCRIBER'S NOTE: Thomas G. EMSLEY, was born in 1844, served as a Union Soldier during the Civil War, and died in 1885. He was interred at Elmwood-St. Joseph Cemetery, Mason City, Iowa.

During 1856 E. A. TUTTLE, A. B. TUTTLE, Charles GILLESPIE and Elnathan CROWELL located.

Elnathan CROWELL was born at Cape Cod, Mass., in 1812, which was his home until he was thirty years of age, as it was that of his father and grandfather, who passed their entire lives there. Mr. CROWELL went to sea at twelve years of age. He shipped on a merchantman and during his nautical life saw much of the world. He visited the principal seaboard cities of America, as well as the chief places in France, Spain, St. Domingo and other countries. When he abandoned a sea-faring life he followed the vocation of carpenter and worked at Boston and Southbridge, Mass., and at Keene, N. H. He first located in the west near St. Mary's, Ohio, and came to Mason City in 1856. In June of the next year he became a resident in Lake township. Mr. CROWELL has been married three times. His first wife was a native of North Dana, Mass., and died eighteen months after her marriage. Her successor was Roxanna GIBBS, who died after coming to Lake. The third wife, Mrs. Sarah (DICKERM) HALL, is still living. One of three children of the second marriage Lewis C. still survives. Mr. CROWELL owns a valuable farm of 120 acres, on section 26, and resides at Clear Lake.

Mrs. Elvira F. (GIBBS) DORT and her daughter, Mrs. R. A. HOWARD, are the representatives of two prominent pioneer settlers of Clear Lake, who came here together in 1857. Mrs. DORT was born in Sullivan, N. H., in 1813. She married Willard DORT, with whom she lived forty-seven years. Following is a sketch of Mr. DORT, published at the time of his death.

"Mr. DORT was born at Gilsum, N. H., April 5, 1807. He received an ordinary country school education and was engaged in farming and carpentering all his life. He married Elvira F. GIBBS, April 24, 1834, who survives her husband after a pleasant companionship of forty-seven years. They have three children, two sons who reside east, and one daughter, Mrs. Rosa A. HOWARD who has always resided with them. Mr. DORT and family came to Clear Lake from Keene, N. H., in 1857. Mr. DORT was one of the few pioneers of Clear Lake who spent the best part of their lives in improving and building up our town. He was a remarkably industrious man, and, though he had attained the age of seventy-four years, seldom passed a day unemployed till his last sickness, or six days previous to his death. He joined the Baptist Church at Sullivan, N. H., in 1838, and lived a consistent Christian life. In 1867 he with others organized the First Baptist Church at Clear Lake, and was elected the first deacon of I_ing country, and soon became well and this Church, a position he held to the day of his death. In 1872 he began the erection of a church for the society. He cut and hewed and hauled all the timber for the frame, and stone for the basement, and during the following summer, with the help of others, built the church, paying nearly one half of its cost, and donating all his labor, and by his zealous labors the denomination have a church that is an ornament to the town and a credit to the society. When the building was nearly finished he, unfortunately, fell from its roof and received injuries from which he never fully recovered. He was an earnest temperance man, and did all in his power to forward whatever tended to elevate the people morally or religiously. Generous and hospitable, his doors were always open, and in pioneer days the tired and hungry were always sure of a generous welcome, and found rest and refreshment without money and without price." He died at his residence at Clear Lake, April 16, 1881.

Mrs. Rosa (DORT) HOWARD became the wife of Thomas O. HOWARD in December, 1856. They accompanied Mrs. HOWARD'S parents to Clear Lake. Herself and two children survive the husband and father. A daughter, Nettie L., wife of O. J. HUBBARD, resides in Lake township. The son is the namesake of his father. Mr. HOWARD was born in Marion, N. H., Dec. 13, 1832. He was a resident of Keene in that State some years previous to coming to Iowa. He was a carpenter and builder by trade, and, with characteristic energy, identified himself with a new and grow widely known and universally esteemed for his manly and noble qualities. He enlisted in August, 1862, in company B, 32d Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and received a mortal wound at the battle of Pleasant Hill, Louisiana, April, 9, 1804, and died two days after at the hospital at that place. The following account of this brave soldier was published in the Sketches of Iowa Soldiers.

"Thomas O. HOWARD, 1st lieutenant of company B, 32d regiment, Iowa Volunteer Infantry, was born in the State of New Hampshire, and was thirty years of age at the time of his death. He was made orderly sergeant on the organization of the company, and upon the death of Lieut. LANE in December, 1862, was promoted to a second lieutenantcy, and subsequently was made first lieutenant, which position he held at the time of his death. He served with the regiment on all its marches and campaigns, except in the expedition to Meridian, when he was absent on sick leave. It is said that death loves a shining mark, and the truthfulness of this saying is well illustrated in his death. Lieut. HOWARD was the idol of his company, and, perhaps, it might in truth be said, of the regiment. Tall, well formed and comely, with a dignified bearing and a winning, open countenance, truthful and honest in all - his dealings, courageous, brave, firm, yet kind and generous, he was every inch a gentleman and a man. As an officer, he had no superior among the officers of his regiment. There was the material in him of which successful generals are made. During the long, weary hours of waiting, preceding the battle of Pleasant Hill, he commanded the skirmishers in front of the right wing of the regiment, and his bearing on that occasion was worthy of all praise."

The first settlers on the prairie were Abram BENNETT and Mr. GARDNER. BENNETT located on section 6, in 1855, and Gardner on section 9. GARDNER remained a year or two and removed to Spirit Lake, where he and all but two of his family were killed by the Indians in the spring of 1857. BENNETT removed to Colorado and died.

E. A. TUTTLE brought his family on and moved on his place in 1856. About the same time Caleb HUBBARD and Mr. PISER settled on the prairie

During the years of the war but few settlers came in. About the next settlement was made, in 1868, by R. O. SIRRINE, William JACKSON and Myron BARTON, all of whom located on section 16.

C. B. SEABURY resides on section 10, Lake township, on a farm of 100 acres. He was born in Chautauqua Co., N. Y., in March, 1832. He married Susan CASE and in 1869 they came to Iowa. Mr. SEABURY sent his family by direct route and made the journey himself with teams. Mr. and Mrs. SEABURY have three daughters Florence, Irene and Lena. Mr. SEABURY was elected supervisor in 1873, held the position three years and has also been township trustee several terms and acting justice of the peace three years.

TRANSCRIBER'S NOTE: Chester Brown SEABURY, born March 16, 1832, died November 21, 1914. Susan (CASE) SEABURY was born July 25, 1844, and died February 4, 1936. They were interred at Clear Lake Cemetery, Clear Lake, Iowa.

Joseph CASE came to Iowa in 1869, making the route overland with his teams and personal property. He was born in the eastern part of the State of New York and when a boy, in 1807, went to Chautauqua county. He died at Clear Lake in September, 1880. Mrs. CASE, his widow, resides with her daughter, Mrs. SEABURY. She was formerly Patty FAIRBANKS and was born in Vermont in 1810.

Rodney PALMER was born in St. Lawrence Co., N. Y., in 1848. He came to Iowa with his father, who is a resident of Lake township, in 1869. He is located on section 26, on a farm he bought of C. PATRICK, a non-resident land-holder. It comprises eighty acres and Mr. PALMER has made all its improvements, it being wild land when he purchased it. He Was married to Lizzie, daughter of George CARLTON, and the children are La Fayette, Clarence W., Mervin and Alice E.

Osman BURDICK located on section 4 of Lake township. He is a resident on a tract of land originally entered by E. A. TUTTLE. Mr. BURDICK purchased of Moses STEWART in January, 1869. He was born in 1840 in Madison Co., N. Y., and came with his father, Perrin BURDICK, to Rock Co., Wis., when eight years of age His father lives with him. His mother died when he was but two years of age. The family removed from Wisconsin to Clayton Co., Iowa, and soon after to Bremer county. They next moved to Floyd county and eventually settled as stated. Mr. BURDICK'S farm contains 160 acres. He married Adeline RICE, sister of James A. RICE. She was born in Illinois. Their children are Elmer and Clara.

J. G. LINDON, of the firm of LINDON & BOLTON, stock dealers, was born in England in 1850 and was there trained to the vocation of farmer. In 1869 he came to the United States and spent a year at Watertown, Wis., coming to Clear Lake in 1870, and at once entered into his present business. The copartnership of LINDON & BOLTON was formed in 1877. The house is ranked among the most extensive in the State, and enjoys a large degree of public confidence. At the present writing, May, 1833, they have in stock 3,000 head of cattle, all of which were wintered within a radius of a few miles. Mr. LINDON has had large experience in the management of stock, and is versed and practiced in the details of business. The interests of the firm are extending, and have every prospect of far outstretching their present dimensions. LINDON & BOLTON own a fine farm of 400 acres near town, and Mr. LINDON owns individually a quarter section His fine residence is situated in the east part of the village. Mrs. LINDON was formerly Carrie E. QUICK, a native of Ohio, of English descent. She is the mother of two children Adella and Vida Belle LINDON.

James D. FREEMAN settled in Cerro Gordo county in June, 1871. He purchased forty acres of virgin prairie, erected a good house and set out shade trees, which gives the place an appearance of having been much longer occupied. He has added forty acres to his original purchase. Mr. Freeman was born in Plainfield, Vt., July 19, 1827. His parents, Nathan and Esther (CONVERSE) FREEMAN, were both of New England origin. He was the youngest of six children, and, at thirteen, he found himself comparatively homeless. His brothers and sisters were married, and his mother being in a hopeless state from consumption, the home was broken up, and James went to Lowell, Mass., finding employment in a cotton mill as extra hand. In nine months he had secured the confidence of the owners and an expert knowledge of the machinery, and was put in the position of assistant overseer of several hands, and also attended to card grinding. He operated in this manner nine successive years. He then went to Manchester, N. H. and assisted in the opening of a new cotton mill, where he remained two years He was married in that city, in the fall of 1849, to Martha STRAW. He had an illness of several months duration in 1851, and left his position. In the fall of that year he returned to Vermont. A year later he went back to Lowell, and asrain entered a cotton mill. In 1853 his wife died, leaving a son LeRoy A., and in 1854 Mr. FREEMAN was married to Maria L. VOSE. He then removed to Milwaukee, Wis., and followed the vocation of painter. In 1855 he went to Columbus, Wis. Later he took his family in a prairie schooner and set out for Chatfield, Minn., where he followed his trade. When his country called for the aid of her faithful sons, Mr. FREEMAN responded, and in 1862 enlisted in company D, 8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry, serving three years. His regiment was on the frontiers of Dakota one year, where it did good service defending the territory from Indian depredations. Mr. FREMAN was in action at Murfreesboro and other important battles. As a result of exposure incident to a soldier's career, his eyes were seriously injured and he was discharged and sent to Chicago for treatment, after which he went to Springfield, Mass., where his family had gone. He again obtained employment in a cotton mill at Uolyoke, and acted as third overseer. At the end of six months he was tendered the position of second over-seer, but was obliged to leave the mill from failing eye-sight. He then went to Waverly, Bremer county, where he became totally blind. After a year of darkness he partly recovered sight and can now read with the aid of magnifying lenses. He next removed to his present home. By his second marriage, Mr. FREEMAN had nine children, five of whom died of diptheria while he was in the service. Those remaining are Gilman, Frank, Leon and Myron. Mr. FREEMAN belongs to the G.A.R., and in religious belief is a Congregationalist. He is a republican in politics.

E. HOWARD purchased his farm on section 11, of PALMETER Brothers, and took possession in the spring of 1872. He is a minister of the Church of the United Brethren, but in consequence of advanced years and impaired health has retired from active labors. He was formerly connected with the Methodist Episcopal Church, and assisted in the organization of its first conference in the State of Iowa, about the year 1844. Mr. HOWARD was born in the State of New Hampshire, emigrated to Illinois and thence to Iowa. His first wife died in 1840, in Illinois. By this marriage he had four children. The present Mrs. HOWARD was Merilda HOYT. She was born in Broome Co., N. Y., and went with her parents to Illinois She has three children. The eldest, Martin Luther, was born in Allamakee Co., Iowa, in 1852; Emma Jane is now Mrs. J. A. WELLER, of Toledo, Tama Co., Iowa; Nellie A., is a teacher in Cerro Gordo county.

N. W. WARREN resides on section 19, on a farm purchased of E. C. JOHNSON, and on which he settled in 1873. He was born in Massachusetts in November, 1835. When a boy, he accompanied his parents to Rushford, Allegany Co., N. Y., where his father died. In 1853 Mr. WARREN emigrated to Columbia Co., Wis., and engaged as clerk in a general store. He subsequently bent all his energies toward farming, which has occupied his attention the greater part of his life. His wife, Olive J. WILLIAMS, was born at Rome, N. Y. They have six children Frank, Carrie, Fred, Charles, Rosa and Myra. Mr. WARREN owns 130 acres of land. In religion, he belongs to the M.E. Society.

Joseph THADA owns eighty acres of land on section 7, which he has put in creditable condition. The improvements are first class and buildings good. He purchased the property in 1874, of Fred LANGENBERG. Mr. THADA was born at Mecklenberg, Germany, in 1842. At the age of fourteen he came to America with his father, John THADA. His mother, Sophia THADA, died in Germany. The senior THADA, located at Green Bay, Wis., where he yet lives. Joseph THADA married Agnes SCHILLER, born in Germany, in 1853. Her parents came to America in 1^58 and settled near Green Bay, Wis. They now live in Lake township, Cerro Gordo county. Mr. and Mrs. THADA have five children Nathalie E., Hattie E., Bertha M., Sylvia A. and Oscar V.

Benjamin LEONARD, Jr., came to Cerro Gordo county in 1875. His farm is on section 5, Clear Lake township, on which he took up his abode in the fall of 1882. He was born in Niagara Co., N. Y., April 4, 1836. When he was fourteen his father, Benjamin LEONARD, Sr., removed to Wisconsin, and is still living in Green county in that State. Benjamin LEONARD became a soldier in the hour of his country's sore need, enlisting twelve days after, the firing on Fort Sumter, in the 3d Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. He was with General POPE in the Shenandoah Valley, and received a severe gun-shot wound in the right arm at Antietam, two years after his enrollment. The result was his discharge. He went to Wisconsin, where he was married to Lavina BRAYTON, a native of Illinois. In 1871 he went to Kansas, where he resided four years. Mr. and Mrs. LEONARD have four children Walter J., Flora A., Lily May and Imogene.

Mrs. LEONARD'S brother, Charles BRAYTON, resides on the same section. In 1878 he bought his farm of W. G. ETTLES. He is a native of McHenry Co., Ill., born in 1838. He went to Wisconsin, and, in 1862, enlisted as a soldier of the civil war, in the 31st Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, and was in the service three years. In 1868 he located north of the lake from which the township is named. Mrs. BRAYTON is a native of Illinois. They have three children Ed, Elna and Hattie.

James B. HEATH is a resident on section 32, Lake township, were here he fixed his abode in 1875, on a farm of 160 acres. He is a native of England, born in August, 1848. His father, James HEATH, made a number of trips to this country before his final emigration in 1849. He landed at New Orleans, whence he proceeded to St. Louis, going thence to Delaware Co., Iowa. He had become thoroughly Americanized when the rebellion threw the Nation into consternation, and adopting the ill as well as the good fortune which befell the land, he enlisted in her defense in the 21st Towa Volunteer Infantry, and served about eight months, when he was discharged for physical disability. He returned to Delaware county, where he passed the rest of his life. His death occurred Sept 8, 1865, at the age of forty-two years. He was a grain and provision merchant, a calling to which he was trained in his native country. His widow resides at Delhi, Delaware county. Mr. HEATH, of this sketch, married Eliza, daughter of Thomas C. HELM, a native of Kentucky. Mrs. HEATH was born in Delaware county. She is the mother of two children Harry C. and Nellie Maud.

Milton Young MOORE settled on section 15, in the spring of 1876, having purchased the farm of Theron PALMETER. He was born in Centre Co., Penn., in 1835. When he was nine years old his parents, Thomas and Sarah (RICHARDS) MOORE, removed with their family to Clinton Co., Ohio. The mother died in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1856. The father went to West Virginia, where he died in 1876. From Ohio Mr. YOUNG (sic), of this sketch, went to Indiana, remaining there two years. He came to Lee Co., Iowa, in 1858. He married Lydia E. COOK, a native of Salem, Henry Co., Iowa, They are the parents of six children Mary Ida, eldest, is the wife of James McLAUGHLIN; Lizzie married R. W. CLARK, of Clear Lake. The others are Edgar T., Ethel L., Arthur C. and Milton W. Mr. MOORE'S farm contains 177 acres.

Sylvester HILL resides on section 28. He took up his residence here in October, 1877, but purchased the place in the spring of 1875, of George W. HYDE. At the time of the purchase the farm had few improvements. About forty acres had been under the plow, and the house was a small structure of logs. A comfortable and commodious house replaces the primitive abode, 125 fruit trees are in position, and the place now has other valuable improvements, and many others in prospect. Mr. HILL was born in Barford, Stanstead Co., Canada, in 1840. His father, Aaron HILL, was born in New Hampshire, and his mother, Caroline (GOODSPEED) HILL, was a native of Vermont. In 1859 Mr. HILL emigrated to Randolph, Columbia Co., Wis. He became a soldier during the last year of the war, and was enlisted in the 51st Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. In the spring of 1868 he came to Clear Lake, and at once turned his attention to carpentering, and was soon after employed in railroad bridge building. Mrs. HILL was, in her girlhood, Mary M. ALLEN. She was born in Vermont. Her parents, Oliver and Orpha ALLEN, removed to Wisconsin when their daughter was eight years of age, where they passed the remainder of their lives. Mr. and Mrs. HILL have three children Edgar S., Nina E. and Freddie. Mr. HILL'S farm contains eighty acres.

Nelson HANSON purchased the farm where he resides, in 1880. It is located on section 27, and contains 120 acres. He is a native of Sweden, born in 1836. At the age of eighteen he came to this country, leaving his parents in their native land, where they completed the period of their existence. On coming to America, in 1854, Mr. HANSON went to Darlington, Wis., where he attended school for a time, afterward becoming a student at Beloit College. He learned the trade of mason, to which pursuit he has devoted many years of his life. Mr. HANSON is a man of education, an extensive reader and well versed in all general subjects. Mrs. HANSON (Jennie A. MOODY), was born in Pennsylvania. The HANSON family includes four sons and three daughters.

Lakeview Creamery is located on section 16, Lake township, two and a half miles east of Clear Lake village. It was built by Orville J. and Orrin R. HUBBARD in 1882. The establishment is furnished with all facilities for first-class products. The cream is collected from the surrounding countiw for many miles. In 1882, the first season, the product was about 90,000 pounds of butter, and the probable results of the season to come, will greatly exceed that amount. The butter is shipped to New York and commands the highest rates of that market. The HUBBARD Brothers are natives of Otsego Co., N. Y. O. J., the elder, was born in 1851; the second, O. R. HUBBARD, in 1854. Caleb N. HUBBARD, their father, came to this county in 1867 and settled in Lake township. He died in July, 1877. Their mother is yet living. Orville J. HUBBARD was associated in the mercantile business with J. C. DAVIS at Clear Lake, from 1875 to 1880. He married Nettie L., daughter of Thomas O. HOWARD, July, 1876. She was born at Clear Lake in 1858. The children are three in number Howard C, born in 1 877; Ethel E., born in 1880; and Floy D., born in 1 882. Orrin R. HUBBARD married Hattie L. BATES, a native of Blue Earth, Minn., July, 1876. They have three children Vera B., Yeta L. and Merton E.


Lake township was one of the three original townships of the county. The first election was held on the first Monday of April, 1857, at the house of James SIRRINE at Clear Lake, when the following officers were elected:

Marcus TUTTLE and Horace PARKER, justices of the peace; Peter P. WOOD and Hiram STILES; constables; Joseph TURNER, clerk.

In 1883 the officers were:

George P. SMITH, Robert O. SIRRINE and Samuel BOOL (?), trustees; J. H. BOEYE and C. B. SEABURY, justices of the peace; M. P. ROSECRANS, clerk: J. B. HEATH, assessor; William EVANS, constable.


The first marriage was that of Michael CALLANAN, Jr., to Mary Ann GRAY.

The first birth was Joseph DICKIRSON, son of the first white man who came to the lake for settlement. This occurred in May, 1855.

The first death was a little girl [Jessie] of Marcus TUTTLE, who died Jan. 3, 1857.


The pioneer school of Lake township was taught by Mrs. LUTZ, at her own house in 1856. The first public school was taught in the winter of 1857-8, on section 9, by E. A. TUTTLE. In 1883 the township had seven school houses.

"Lake Township." History of Franklin and Cerro Gordo Counties, Iowa. Chapt. XXIII. Pp. 870-82. Union Pub. Co. Springfield IL. 1883.

Transcription by Sharon R. Becker, April of 2011



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