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Delaware County, Iowa

 Biography Directory


Thomas Hetherington


Coffin's Grove Township




THOMAS HETHERINGTON was born in Lycoming county, Pa., June 6, 1817. He is a son of David and Elizabeth (Huff) Hetherington, the former of whom was a native of Ireland, and the latter a native of New Jersey. The father came to the United States when a young man, and settled in Northumberland county, Pa., afterwards moving to Lycoming county, that state, where he married, and thence moved to Richland county, Ohio, in 1838, and there died in 1853, at the age of eighty-four.  He was a farmer throughout life, an enterprising, industrious and successful one. The mother died while the family was residing in Lycoming county, Pa., in the year 1835, at the age of sixty.

      To David and Elizabeth Hetherington were born eleven children, of whom the subject of this notice is the sixth. Only two besides our subject are now living:  Ruth Ann, wife of Alexander McElvane, and Asher, both residing near Mansfield Ohio. The deceased brothers and sisters are: John, Mary, Ellen, William, Eliza, Nancy, James and David.

      Thomas, the subject proper of this notice, was reared in his native county, in Pennsylvania, and had attained his majority when his father moved to Richland county, Ohio. He accompanied his father to Ohio, and settling in Richland county resided there till 1844, when he went to Rock county, Wis.  He married in Rock county, and lived  there till June, 1853, then came to Iowa and settled in Delaware county. On locating in this county he bought a tract of one hundred and sixty acres of land in Delaware township, for which he paid $6.50 per acre, and a tract of forty  acres in Coffin's Grove township, for which he paid $75.00. He settled on the former tract, and engaged at once in farming, and has been so engaged since.  In fact, Mr. Hetherington has been a farmer all his life, was reared on the farm and has followed the pursuits for which he was trained in youth with industry and has met with a fair degree of success.  He resided on his farm in Delaware township till 1880, at which date he moved to Manchester, where he has since lived, still retaining his farming interest, however. Coming to this county at the date he did, Mr. Hetherington has seen most of the changes which have marked the progress of his adopted home, from a wild prairie to a country of well improved farms, and in the labor of bringing about this great change he has faithfully borne the part that has fallen to his lot, in connection with his own locality. He has served in the usual number of local offices, the duties of which he has discharged with credit to himself and satisfaction to those concerned.  He has taken no particular interest in any matter of a political nature, but for the upbuilding of the social, industrial and educational interests of his community he has always been active, and his name has ever stood pledged for the enforcement of the law and the preservation of order and good government in the vicinity where he has resided.


       Mr. Hetherington married January 6, 1846, taking to wife Miss Susanna Crall then of Richland county, Ohio, where also she was born, March 18, 1827.  The wife of his youth abides with him, having borne him a faithful and affectionate companionship for more than forty-four years.  Mrs. Hetherington is a daughter of John and Sarah  (Lacer) Crall, her father having been a native of Dauphin county, Pa., where he lived for many years. He died in Rock county, Wis., in February, 1876, having attained the seventy-third year of his age. He was a farmer and was always engaged in agricultural pursuits. He was a son of Matthias Crall, who was a Pennsylvanian by birth and who lived most of his life in his native state, but died in Richland county, Ohio, at the age of seventy-five. Mrs. Hetherington's mother was  born in Perry county, Pa., and died in Richland county, Ohio, in 1860, at the age of fifty-four. She was a daughter of Christian Lacer, a Pennsylvanian, who died in his native state in 1855, aged seventy-one years.

      Mr. and Mrs. Hetherington are the parents of eight children. Maria, their eldest, was born February 20, 1848. She is now the wife of Andrew Hesner, and lives in Weaver, Minn. Russell, their next, was born October 8, 1849. He married Addie Hudson, of this county, and she afterwards dying, he married Nellie O'Donnell, also of this county. He lives in Rawlins county, Kans., and is a miller.  John was born April 27,1853. He married Mary J. Thornburg, of this county, and now resides here, the father of two children: Harry Ernest and Florence Belle. Amos B. and Asher F., Mr. and Mrs. Hetherington's next two children, are twins and were born June 1, 1856. The former resides in this county and a sketch of him appears in this work. The latter is in Black Hills, Dak.  Matilda was born February 13, 1858, and still resides with her parents.  Mary Jane was born August 5, 1863, and is also with her parents.  Amanda was born March 3, 1866, and is the wife of Albert Acers, of this county.

      While Mr. Hetherington has never taken much interest in partisan politics he has not neglected his duties as a citizen and voter. In earlier years he was a Whig and supported the Whig ticket with much zeal. On the disappearance of the old party lines, he cast his political fortunes with the republican party, and he has maintained a steady allegiance to the teachings of that party since. He is an intelligent and public spirited citizen and in the progressive town of his residence a worthy personage and important factor.


~ source: Biographical souvenir of the counties of Delaware and Buchanan, Iowa; Chicago : F. A. Battey, 1890. Page 620; LDS microfilm #985424

~ contributed by Thom Carlson