This is township 95 north, range 4
west. It contains thirty-six sections, and is bounded
on the north by Allamakee County, on the east by
Mendon Township, on the south by Farmersburg
Township, and on the west by Monona Township. It
abounds in timber, fine springs and brooks, and is as
good a township for farming as need be found. On the
west side of the township especially the land is
unsurpassed, and many of the farms are under a high
state of cultivation.
Giard was organized in
April, 1854, by order of Elias H. Williams, Judge of
the County Court. It was so named from Basil Giard,
who made his claim here in 1795. The first officers
of the township were: Clerk, B.F. Spaulding;
Trustees, S.S. Phillips, Hugh Graham and James
Tapper; Constables, Isaac Matthews and Joseph
McCorkel; Road Supervisor, James McMullen and James
Stultz; Assessor, Isaac Matthews; Justice of the
Peace, Allen E. Wanzer; Supervisor, James Tapper. The
present township officers are: Clerk, James E. Irwin;
Assessor, John Geraghty; Justices, Peter Farley and
Guy Kinsley; Trustees, George Koch, John G. Kortee
and Peter Farley.
The first settler of the
township was Chauncey S. Edson, who immigrated
sometime in 1836. He hailed from Vermont, and located
on section 26, where he took a claim, and at the time
of the land sales he purchased it and made his farm
there. He lived here till his death. Among the early
settlers Allen E. Wanzer was a prominent figure,
though his character was not of the best. He was a
man of some natural ability but of little culture. He
held several local offices - was Justice of the Peace
for some time, and was once Mayor of McGregor. The
place where he first located was long called Bogus
Hollow, because some people suspected that he
manaufactured spurious money. Mr. Wanzer came from
the State of New York, and died in McGregor.
Another early settler was a
man by the name of Weatherwax, who settled on section
27. Samuel A. Goss came in at an early date, and
settled near where Mr. Edson lived. He died in
Minnesota. In 1841 William Clement and Hugh Graham
came and settled on section 28. They were from New
York City. In 1841, also, James Tapper purchased his
land and settled upon it. Another early settler was a
man by the name of Merikel. He settled on section 34,
afterward removing from the county, and nothing is
now known of him. Ira B. Briggs came in at an early
The first couple married
were P.R. Moore and Clarissa Brown, both living in
Giard Township, but the marriage was performed by
Rev. Sidney Wood, in Farmersburg Township. The first
birth in the township was that of Orpha Cummings, a
daughter of Santon Cummings and Hannah Cummings, who
is now the wife of P.P. Olmstead, Esq., of Monona
Township. Orpha Cummings married a man by the name of
Collins, and died in Monona Township. The first death
was of a man named Hinkley, in Bogus Hollow, who was
employed as a teamster between McGregor and Fort
The first school building
was a log-cabin on section 29, which had been
originally built as a dwelling. The first teacher was
a lady by the name of Mary J. Neill, who afterward
married the Rev. William McCormick. This cabin was 14
x 16. Another log-cabin was afterward erected in
place of the pioneer school-house. In 1855 a frame
school building was erected on section 30. This was
afterrward moved to where the present school building
stands in district No.4, and sold at auction. The
present school building was then erected, at a cost
of $1,000. This is the best school building in the
The early school records are
very imperfect, having been at first kept on waste
paper. The first entry on the books is dated June 11,
1858. At a meeting of the board held on that day,
$400 tax on the property in the township was voted
for the current school expenses of that year. Isaac
Mathews was at that tiime President of the board, and
B.F. Spaulding was the Secretary.
At a meeting held Oct. 23 of
that same year it was resolved to employ only male
teachers, and to pay not to exceed $16 per month.
There were at this time seven sub-districts in the
township. Nov. 18, 1860, the pay of the teachers was
raised to $25 per month.
The presidency of the School
Board has been held successively by Isaac Mathews,
J.C. Stulltz, W.J. Paul, J.C. Stulltz, John Tapper,
John B. Sutter, D.F. Bickel, James Tapper and George
Hazlett, the last of whom was elected March 17, 1879.
He is the present incumbent.
The secretaryship has in
turn devolved upon B.F.Spaulding, Porter F.
Dickinson, J.C. ???pel, George Hazlett and Guy
Kinsley. The last named has held the office since
March 18, 1867.
The Treasurers have been
Porter F. Dickinson and M.L. March, who has held the
office since March 18, 1866. James Tapper was
Treasurer before Dickinson for several years.
A report of the district
secretary to the county superintendent, made Sept.
20, 1865, shows the number of persons of school age
to be: Males, 220; females, 198; total, 418. There
were enrolled in all the schools, in winter, 305; in
summer, 283. The average daily attendance was 189.
In 1871 there were seven
schools in the township, open eight months in the
year. In these schools were enrolled 398 pupils. The
average daily attendance was 177. There was at the
same time a school population of 527. The aggregate
amount paid teachers during the year was $1,540.
In 1881 eight schools were
taught eight months, and one school four months. In
these schools were enrolled 441 pupils, and the
average attendance was 213. At the same time there
was a school population of 523. The aggregate amount
paid teachers during the year was $2,326. The average
compensation per month was: For males $30.75;
females, $26.18. Males taught in the aggregate
twenty-four months, and females taught forty-four
After various sub-divisions
of the township it now comprises nine sub-districts,
in which are located ten school buildings, built at
various times within the last twenty-two years, for
sums varying in amount from $400 to $1,000.
The Union Baptist Church of
Council Hill was organized at the Kinsley
school-house, May 20, 1862, with a membership of
thirty-six, most of whom were baptized by Rev. John
A. Pool, who was afterward installed as pastor. He
resigned in November, 1864. The church was then for
two years without a pastor, when Rev. A.W. Hilton
took charge of the work, in connection with the
church at Hardin. This arrangement was continued
until October, 1871, with profit to the church. Elder
Hilton then resigned, moving to Cherokee County, and
his place in the church was occupied by Rev. D.P.
Marryatt. He remained until November, 1874. Rev. Joel
H. Austin commenced preaching for the church in
August, 1876, and resigned in April following. Since
then the society has had no regular services. There
is a small Sunday-school connected with the church,
which still holds meetings.
The first preacher was Rev.
Mr. Knight, who held services at private houses. He
was connected with the Methodist Episcopal church.
There are four churches in the township - the German
Methodist Episcopal, Evangelical, United Brethren and
There are three postoffices
in the township - Beulah, Giard and Council Hill.