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Fayette County, Iowa
Past and Present of Fayette County Iowa, 1910
Author: G. Blessin
B. F. Bowen & Company, Indianapolis, Indiana
Vol. I, Biographical Sketches
One of the best known men of Auburn township, Fayette county, is Joseph Blong, who was for some time engaged in farming in Winneshiek county, but is now a merchant and hotel-keeper at St. Lucas, in the interest of which place he has exerted a potent influence for years and is one of the leading citizens of this part of the country. He was born in Belgium, March 17, 1841, and his parents, John and Jennie (Lochrohr) Blong, were natives of the same place, the father born in 1805 and the mother in 1808. They grew to maturity, were educated and married in that country, and in 1855 the family came to the United States, when Joseph, the subject, was fourteen years old. They located at Fort Washington, Wisconsin, where the father spent the rest of his life, dying in 1865, having been survived by his good wife many years, she dying at the same place in 1886. They were the parents of four sons and two daughters, of whom, John, the eldest, is married and living in Winneshiek county, Iowa, with his family of seven children and devotes his attention to farming; Katie is the widow of Theodore Ellenbecker, of Milwaukee county, Wisconsin; Joseph, of this review; Ambrose is now living in the Black Hills; John B., whose wife is deceased, lives in Charles City, Iowa; Margaret, who is the widow of Nicholas Ellenbecker, is the youngest of the family and resides in Port Washington, Wisconsin.
Joseph Blong began life by working in the copper mines of Michigan when only a lad. Remaining there for a time, he then worked out as a farm laborer until about 1888, when, with the capital he had saved through those long years of hard work, he came to St. Lucas, Fayette county, and opened a general store, which he has continued to operate in a very successful manner, having enjoyed from the first a very liberal patronage with the surrounding country, for at all seasons he has kept a very carefully selected stock of dry-goods, groceries, provisions, crockery, notions, boots and shoes, etc. In connection with his store he maintains a hotel, which is well patronized by the traveling public and has a reputation for general convenience and where all guests receive the best consideration and courteous treatment.
Mr. Blong was married, in 1867, to Christiana Hovertha, at Belgium, Wisconsin. She was born in France, in 1842, in which country she grew to maturity and was educated, coming to America with her parents, in 1865, locating in Wisconsin, where she lived until her marriage. This union has resulted in the birth of ten children, seven of whom are yet living; Nicholas, the eldest, died in infancy; Mathias, who was born in Wisconsin in 1870, is now in Waucoma, Iowa; Katie, born in 1872, died when fourteen years old; Margaret, Lizzie, Burdice (died February 22, 1808), Theodore, Barbara and Gertrude (who died in May, 1907.) These children have been carefully educated in the local schools, and have also been taught German at their church. The many friends of this honored family attest to their industry and integrity, and Mr. Blong is recognized as one of the county’s substantial and influential citizens."
~Transcribed for Fayette Co IAGenWeb Project by Ann Borden
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