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Cherokee County Biographies

Nathan Johnson

NATHAN JOHNSON was born on the Atlantic Ocean, May 22, 1825, and is a son of Zebnia and Anna (Wilson) Johnson, both of New England birth.  His father is descended directly from the English royalty, Timothy Johnson, his father, being a near relative of the King of England a century ago; his mother is of German ancestry, being a descendant of the early Dutch settlers of the Mohawk Valley; she was a daughter of Benjamin Wilson, an officer in the Revolutionary War, as was also Timothy Johnson.

Nathan Johnson passed his childhood in Canada until he was nine years old; he then entered one of his father's  vessels,  his father being an extensive merchant and owner of both lake and ocean vessels.  He filled every position on board a merchantman, from cabin boy to second mate, and became thoroughly familiar with every detail of ocean navigation.  It was to him an excellent school,  and he became highly versed in astronomy and the mathematics essential to a ship's management.  Growing tired of a sailor's life, Mr. Johnson left the sea when he attained his majority and embarked in business at Corning, New York, where for ten years he did an extensive traffic as a tanner and currier.  Meeting with some financial reverses he decided to engage in agriculture and came to Illinois where he remained a few years.  Then for twenty  years he was a resident of Lenawee County, Michigan, from which place he removed to Buena Vista County, Iowa.  In 1884 he came to Cherokee County and settled on his farm, which consists of a half section of excellent land, which he devoted to the growing of better grades  of live-stock; he has recently turned his attention to the breeding of Polled Angus cattle, and Clydesdale horses.

Mr. Johnson was married in 1860 in Steuben County, New York, to Miss Sarah Ann Bond, a native of the Empire State.  They have an interesting family of four children: Lazette C., the wife of George Morgan; Veronica Cora, wife of De Forest Morgan; Carrie Belle and Warren W.  Mr. Johnson's strong personality impresses itself upon those who meet him.  His mind is well stored with facts, and having a natural, easy flow of language he becomes an entertaining speaker and his utterances command attention.  He is independent in politics and in religion is liberal in his views, occupying an advanced position on all questions.

Biographical History of Cherokee County, IA, W. W. Dunbar & Co Publishers, 1889

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