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Fayette County, Iowa
Portrait & Biographical Album of Fayette County Iowa
Containing Full Page Portraits and Biographical Sketches of
Prominent and Representative Citizens of the County
Lake City Publishing Co., Chicago
Mathias Duclos, a retired farmer and honored pioneer of the county, where for forty years he has resided, was born in Kaltenhausen, St. Rhine, France, November 30, 1819. His parents, Mathias and Maria Ann (Altenberger) Duclos, were born in the same place, the father in 1795 and the mother in 1798. In their native land they were married and one son, our subject, was born unto them. Bidding good-by to home and friends, they sailed for America in 1826, landing in Boston, Mass., whence they went to New York City, later to Albany, Utica and Buffalo, and thence crossed the lake to Cleveland, Ohio, continued on to Canton, Ohio, and from there removed to Pittsburg, Pa., remaining in that city about eleven years. Their next place of residence was in Franklin County, Ind., where they spent twelve years, the father dying in that county in 1847. His wife, who survived him five years, died in Cincinnati, Ohio. In their family were eight children, who attained to mature years. Our subject was the only one born in France: Joseph and Lawrence were natives of Pittsburg and the younger members, Anthony, Louis, Mary, Barbara and Lena were born in Franklin County, Ind. All are now deceased except our subject, Louis and Mary: the two latter reside in Cincinnati.
Our subject was a lad of seven years when he came to America with his parents. He was reared to manhood in Pittsburg, Pa., and Franklin County, Ind., where he became acquainted with and married Julia Ann Stathel, eldest daughter in a family of four children, whose parents were Anthony and Francisco (Worst) Stathel. She was born in Barickberg, Germany, January 16, 1825, and her marriage took place October 20, 1844. Anthony, Francis and Lena, the other members of the family, were born in Franklin County, Ind., and the two elder reside in Auburn Township, Fayette County. Lena is deceased. The mother died in St. Lucas, in 1881, and the father's death occurred at his home in that village in 1883. The Stathel family located in St. Lucas in 1849, and enjoys the distinction of being the first white family to establish a home in that now beautiful town.
When a young man, our subject went South to New Orleans where he worked for seven years, returning to Indiana, in the meantime, for his bride. They were living in the Crescent City at the breaking out of the Mexican War, and the lady not enjoying the prospects of a home in the midst of its perils persuaded Mr. Duclos to return to Indiana, and in 1850 they located on a farm near St. Lucas where he has since made his home. By their union have been born thirteen children - Mathias, who was born April 11, 1847, in Franklin County, Ind., died in Auburn Township, February 15, 1854; Mary born October 6, 1849, in Franklin County, died May 19, 1867; Julia Ann, born July 13, 1850, at Old Mission, Winneshiek County, Iowa, married Nicholas Buchard and with their seven children, they make their home in Winneshiek County; Philomena, born February 20, 1852, in St. Lucas, died February 25, 1859; Anthony, born May 4, 1854, was married on the 23d of September, 1876, to Barbara Rosenbaum, by whom he had eight children, and is engaged in farming in Winneshiek County; Louis, born August 16, 1856, married Caroline Cweibahmer, and resides in St. Lucas; Frances, born August 10, 1859, married D. Beis, and resides in Dakota; Hannah, born June 16, 1861, is the wife of John Beis, of Dakota; Magdelena, born March 19, 1863, is at home; Mathias, born February 24, 1864, wedded Mary Beis, and is living in Dakota; Elizabeth, born March 19, 1866, died in 1880; Nicholas, born July 24, 1868, died in 1881; and Barbara, who was born June 10, 1870, is still under the parental roof.
Mr. Duclos has made farming his life work and by special attention given to his business interests, enterprise and industry, has become one of the substantial citizens of the county, and is now enabled to live a retired life. He has been a useful and influential citizen of the community and is one of the honored pioneers of the county, having witnessed almost its entire growth, while much of the progress and development of Auburn Township is due to his exertions. Always liberal and public-spirited, he aided in the establishment of schools, churches, public roads, leading enterprises, etc., with voice, purse and willing hands. He was one of the trustees who built the first church at this place - the Roman Catholic Church of St. Lucas Congregation of which he and his family are still members. Additions have been made and the fine structure has been enlarged until it will now seat twelve hundred people. Mr. Duclos has also held various public offices of trust and responsibility in his township and votes with the Democratic party.
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