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Fayette County, Iowa  

 Biography Directory


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

March 1891


~Page 615~



Arthur Crawford



Arthur Crawford. Among the farmers of Fayette County who have taken an active part in her upbuilding and advancement is our subject who resides on section 1, Windsor Township. He has here made his home since 1866, emigrating westward from Ohio, his native State. He was born in Carroll County on the 11th of February, 1825, and is a son of John and Martha (Donaldson) Crawford. His father was born in Ireland in 1802, and when a young man crossed the Atlantic to America, locating in Pennsylvania where he became acquainted with and married Miss Donaldson who was born in that State in 1798. He was a farmer by occupation, which business he followed throughout his entire life. In an early day in the history of Ohio, he took up his residence in Carroll County, where he developed a farm, making it his home until his death which occurred in 1848. His wife long survived him and was called to her final rest in 1888. In their family were nine children - Eliza Ann, wife of James Gault, of Carroll County, Ohio; Arthur, whose name heads this sketch; Jane, wife of Elias Johnston, of Carroll County, Ohio; David, who married Kate Thompson and resides in Carroll County; Mary, wife of William Haines, of Steuben County, Ind.; Sarah and Robert, twins, the former living in Carroll County, the latter now deceased; Rachel, wife of William T. Grimes, of Dover Township, Fayette County, Iowa, who came to this county in 1858; and Willie who died in Carroll County, Ohio, about 1844. Robert enlisted for the late war in 1861, as a member of Company A, Thirty-Second Ohio Infantry, and during his service contracted typhoid fever from which he died at Vicksburg in October, 1863.


Nothing of special importance occurred during the childhood of Arthur Crawford. He was reared to manhood in the county of his nativity, where, after he had attained to mature years he was joined in wedlock with Miss Elizabeth Boyd, the wedding being celebrated on the 15th of June, 1854. The lady was born in that county and is a daughter of David and Agnes (Bell) Boyd, the former born in Pennsylvania in 1810, and the latter in Maryland in 1814. During their childhood they emigrated to Carroll County, Ohio, where they were married in 1832, five children being born of their union, namely: Mrs. Crawford; Lavica who resides in Carroll County; John B., who was born in 1840 and is still living in Ohio; Alexander who was born in 1843, enlisted in Company I, Ninety-Eighth Ohio Regiment, and was taken prisoner at the battle of Chickamauga and was held in the rebel prisons of Belle Isle and Andersonville for fifteen months and three days before he was exchanged, but was so diseased and emaciated that he was discharged at Washington, D. C.; he is married and makes his home in Carroll County; David S., born in 1846, is married and also resides in Carroll County. The father of this family died in the Buckeye State but the mother is still living on the old homestead. The founder of that family in America was Alexander Boyd who left his home in Ireland, and in 1798 became a resident of Pennsylvania.


Shortly after his marriage Mr. Crawford took his bride to a farm in the county of his nativity and zealously devoted his energies to the cultivation of the soil until 1861, when at the first call for troops he offered his services to the Government. He became a member of Company A, Thirty-Second Ohio Infantry, for three years, and was assigned to the Army of the Cumberland. He took part in the battle of Green Briar and at Harper's Ferry was twice wounded, carrying one ball in his body today. He was also captured at that place but made his escape and joined his regiment. The greater part of the time he was engaged on duty in the West and participated in the siege and capture of Vicksburg. Prior to the Harper's Ferry surrender he was in the following battles and skirmishes: Cheat Mountain, Green Briar, Harrisburg, Cross Keys, McDowell and Winchester, besides many other skirmishes and the surrender of Harper's Ferry, where he was wounded and taken prisoner carrying two rebel balls in his left side and with twenty-two others escaped from the rebel lines by crossing the Potomac reaching his home in two weeks without a penny in his pocket and was exchanged in ninety days and returned to his regiment. Being assigned to the Western division he was at the siege of Vicksburg; being disabled there with a broken arm and not fit for duty, he was transferred to the veteran reserve corps and there served out the remainder of his enlistment at Rock Island, Ill., as Sergeant of Nos. 9 and 12 barracks that contained the rebel prisoners. He was honorably discharged in Chicago, Ill., at the close of his term of service, in September, 1864, and returned to his old home.


Two years later, Mr. Crawford having determined to come West, chose Fayette County as the scene of his future labors and made a settlement in Windsor Township. He bought a farm of ninety acres and afterwards by an additional purchase increased its boundaries until it comprised one hundred and seventy-five acres. However, he has since disposed of much of this land, owning ninety-five acres on Section 1. This he has placed under a high state of cultivation and the many excellent improvements which he has made greatly enhance its value. Beside his agricultural interests, Mr. Crawford has been connected with other enterprises in this county. He encouraged the organization of the Fayette National Bank and became a member of its first board of directors. The cause of education finds in him a warm friend and while serving as a member of the School Board, has done effective service in that line. As every true American citizen should do, he feels an interest in public affairs and keeps himself well informed on the leading issues of the day, while at the ballot box he supports the Republican party. Socially he is a member of Abernethy Post, No. 48, G. A. R., of West Union.


Unto Mr. and Mrs. Crawford have been born seven children - Flora Addie, born September 3, 1855, is now the wife of David Turner, of Windsor Township; Martha Ella, born August 3, 1858, is the wife of Samuel Johnston, of Cloud County, Kan.; Elwell J., born May 30, 1861, married Miss Mabel P. Doty, and resides in Union Township; Nannie Bell, born February 24, 1867, wedded Grant L. Doty, a resident farmer of Union Township; Jennie Boyd, born March 7, 1871, is the wife of Truman A. J. Doty of Windsor Township; Artie R., born April 9, 1877; and David S. B., February 16, 1880, are still under the paternal roof and are attending school. This family is well and favorably known throughout the county and the children do honor to the parents from whom they receive that priceless heritage, an untarnished name. A quarter of a century has passed since Mr. Crawford came to the county and he has done nothing to forfeit the esteem of his fellow citizens but has steadily risen in their respect. Our subject has been a liberal supporter of the Presbyterian Church for thirty-five years and his wife has been an active member of the same church since she was sixteen years old and was one of eight members who helped to organize the Presbyterian Church in West Union.




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