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Biography of M. P. LYDON

M. P. Lydon, of Cresco, is widely known throughout this section of the state as a breeder of and dealer in Big Poland China hogs and draft horses, of which he has made a specialty for the past three decades. Howard County numbers him among her native sons, his birth having here occurred on the 22d of August, 1867. His parents, Nicholas and Mary (Foley) Lydon, were both natives of Ireland, the former coming to the United States in young manhood, while the latter accompanied her parents to the new world in her girlhood days. They were married in Baltimore and in 1856 cast in their lot with the pioneer settlers of Howard county, Iowa, the father taking up a tract of government land in Paris township, where he carried on general agricultural pursuits continuously and successfully until 1893. From that year until 1898 he resided in New Hampton, while the remainder of his life was spent with his son, M. P. Lydon, in whose home he passed away in 1903. The death of his wife occurred November 26, 1906. The period of his residence in this part of the state covered nearly a half century, and when he was called to his final rest, the community mourned the loss of one of its honored early settlers as well as representative and esteemed citizens.

M. P. Lydon supplemented a district school education by a course of study in the Capital City Commercial College of Des Moines, Iowa, from which he was graduated in 1889. He then purchased the old homestead farm in Paris township, Howard county, operating it with good success until 1896, when he disposed of the property and took up his abode in Cresco, where he has since resided. About 1889 he began the breeding of pure bred Poland China hogs and has specialized along this line throughout the intervening period of thirty years. For the same length of time he has also been extensively engaged in handling pure bred cattle, sheep and horses, so that he has become widely known throughout this section of Iowa as a breeder and dealer. His well merited reputation for fair dealing and absolute integrity has contributed largely to his success and he has long ranked with the leading live stock dealers of the state.

In 1899 Mr. Lydon was united in marriage to Miss Julia Crapser, of Sextonville, Wisconsin, by whom he had eight children, five of whom survive, namely: Mary Ellen, John C., Benjamin F., Margaret and James. All are yet under the parental roof.

In his political views Mr. Lydon is a democrat and he served as roadmaster and also as secretary of the school board for several years, making an excellent record in both positions. His fraternal connection is with the Knights of Columbus, which indicates his affiliation with the Catholic church, of which his wife and children are also communicants. His entire life has been spent in Howard county and that his career has ever been upright and honorable is indicated in the fact that the associates of his boyhood and youth are still numbered among his stanch friends.

History of Chickasaw and Howard Counties,
By Robert Herd Fairbairn (Published 1919 - Volume II)
S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois
Transcribed by Bernie Glienke, June 2009