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Cherokee County Biographies

Abraham Ward

Abraham Ward, a leading farmer and stock-raiser of Afton Township, has been identified with the interests of Cherokee County since 1872.  He is a native of Canada, and was born twelve miles west of Toronto, near Lake Ontario, February 11, 1834.  He is the second child and oldest son of Joseph and Elizabeth (Jenkinson) Ward, who were natives of the County of Wicklow, Ireland; they came with their parents to Canada when children, and there they were reared, married and had eight children.  Mr. Ward received a common-school education, and resided with his parents until his majority.  He was married October 20, 1859, to Miss Laura Van Horn, a native of Canada and a daughter of Frederick and Jerusha (Chapman) Van Horn, the father being a native of Canada, and the mother of the State of Ohio.  In 1866 Mr. Ward removed to Marshall County and purchased a farm of 200 acres of wild land, which he began the task of improving.  The present advanced standing of the State of Iowa is due to the indomitable courage of those hardy pioneers who so bravely made the way for those who have come afterward.  Our subject resided in Marshall County until October, 1873, when he came to Cherokee County, as before stated. He bought 240 acres of wild land, and again set about the work of claiming from Nature the heritage of man.  He has improved this land until he has one of the best farms in the township.  Mr. and Mrs. Ward are the parents of three children: Ida Elizabeth, Minerva Jerusha and Mabel Novenia.  They are active and consistent members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, Mr. Ward having held the office of steward in the Afton Township church since its organization.  He has served as school director, as township treasurer, and has filled other local offices of trust and responsibility with much credit to himself and the entire satisfaction of the public.  Politically he affiliates with the Republican party.  Mr.Ward is a self made man and by industry and his own exertions he has accumulated a good property, which he uses to the best advantage in surrounding his family with all the necessary comforts of life; he has donated liberally to the support of the church and has given his children a good, practical education.  

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

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