Keokuk County IAGenWeb
Free genealogy records

What's New | Bios | Birth/Marr/Death | Cemeteries | Census | Courts | Directories/Lists | Families | History | Land & Property | Military | Photos & Postcards | Resources | Schools

Family History

This is a transcript of the handwritten first pages of a 50+ page genealogy by Levi Linden Bower of Sigourney, Iowa.

In writing this book and looking at records, and with help of Relation I have compiled this much, although not gotten complete proof that Ernest Bower of Keota, Iowa was my father's second cousin. To be a second cousin to my father, Ernest's grandfather would have to be a brother to Samuel Frederick Bower. I have one listed so if Johann Christine Bower is not Ernest's grandfather there would have to be another brother that I do not know about.

I have found in the 1850 Census of Chester Township, Morrow County, Ohio that there is a John and Elizabeth Bower listed, who I believe is Samuel's brother (that I have as Johann Christine Bower). Ernest's father, Charles Bower was 25 years old in 1850 and a shoemaker and married in 1852 at Columbus, Ohio, would most likely be in Columbus in 1850 and not in Morrow County, Ohio for the 1850 census.

There is a Jacob Bower listed in the 1850 census of Chester Township, Morrow County, Ohio who I believe to be the son of John and Elizabeth Bower and a brother to Charles Bower.

Levi Linden Bower
Sigourney, Iowa

(1) Andreas Bower born Sept 25, 1773 died Mar 12, 1829.
Married Caroline Sabina in Jan 1794

Children are:
M (2) Samuel Frederick Bower born Sep 25, 1794 died Aug 2, 1881
M (3) Johann Christine Bower born Aug 16, 1796
F (4) Johanna Dorathea Bower born Feb 8, 1808

(2) Samuel Frederick Bower, son of Andreas and Caroline Sabina Bower born Sept 25, 1794 in Germany died Aug 2, 1881. Married Johanna Christine Fredrica Exthelm Jan 14, 1827. Born Nov 25, 1806 at Ostramunder Germany died Jan 29, 1871 and buried in Bethel Cemetery near Harper, Iowa.

I, Levi Linden Bower believe that Samuel's father fought in the Battle of Waterloo as a General in the German Army when Napoleon fell in 1815. As my father told of someone of our relation being in that battle and I believe it was my father's great grandfather.

Children are:
M (5) Johann Fredrich Bower born May 8, 1829 at Ostramunder Germany died Jan 16, 1834
F (6) Emilie Theresa Bower born May 7. 1833 Ostramunder Germany died Mar 14, 1901 buried in Bethel Cemetery near Harper, Iowa
M (7) Charles Wilhelm (William) Bower born Sep 5, 1834 at Ostramunder Germany died Jan 16, 1914 at Rlleau, Saskatchewan, Canada
M (8) Frederick Lewis Bower born Oct 8, 1838 at Ostramunder Germany died Nov 5, 1878 in Iowa Co. Iowa and buried in White Pigeon Cemetery four miles north of Webster, Iowa
M (9) Frederick Levi (Leibert) Bower born May 7, 1842 in Morrow Co Ohio died July 16, 1913 at Harper, Iowa buried in Bethel Cemetery near Harper, Iowa.
F (10) Amelia Bower born Feb 20, 1843in Morrow Co Ohio died Oct 2, 1887 buried in Bethel Cemetery near Harper, Iowa.

Samuel Frederich Bower moved from Ostarmunder Germany to Morrow Co Ohio arriving in June 1840 and then to Iowa arriving on Jun 28 1853 at Dutch Creek Township, Washington Co, Iowa and then in 1855 moved to German Creek in Keokuk County about three miles southwest of Harper.

(3) Johann Christian Bower, son of Andreas and Carline Sabina was born Aug 16 1796 at Ostarmunder Germany. In the 1850 census of Chester Township, Morrow Co Ohio there was a John and Elizabeth Bower listed who I believe is the Johann Christine Bower and is Charles Bower's father. Johann married to Elizabeth.

Children are:
M (11) Charles Bower born in 1825 Prussia
M (12) Jacob Bower
(6) Emilie Theresa Bower Schultz, daighter of Samuel Frederich and Johanna Christine Fredrica Axthelm Bower was born May 7 1833 at Ostarmunder Germany and died Mar 14, 1901 and buried in Bethel Cemetery. No children.

(3) Charles William Bower b Sep 5, 1834 Ostarmunder Germany. Arrived Ohio 1840, Dutch Creek Township, Washington Co., IA Jun 28, 1853; German Creek, Keokuk Co., IA 1855. Left IA for Roleau Saskatchewan Canada 1908. d Jan 16, 1914 (Roleau Cemetery).

+Caroline Klett m. Charles William Bower Apr. 1856 German Creek, IA, d. Sep 1861 German Township, IA.
Children of Charles Frederick Bower and Caroline Klett:
(4)Freie (Frederick) William Bower b Jan 14, 1857 d Jun 12, 1863 (Bethel Cemetery)
(4)August Frederick Bower b Mar 30, 1860 near Harper, IA d May 20, 1956 Sigourney (Bethel Cemetery)

+Mary Baumert m. Charles William Bower Apr 29 1862 Keokuk, IA d Aug 31, 1864 (Bethel Cemetery)
Children of Charles Frederick Bower and Mary Baumert:
(4)John Samuel Bower b Mar 2, 1863 Harper, IA d Jan 23, 1936 Sigourney (Pleasant Grove Cemetery).
(4)Mary Jane Bower b Aug 28, 1864 d Oct 8, 1864 (Bethel Cemetery)

+Amelia Ernestine Klatt b Apr 19, 1845 Buchiwarder Prussia d Jan 10, 1937 Saskatchewan Canada m. Charles William Bower Jul 4, 1865 Harper, IA by Justice of the Peace Frederick Levi Bower (Charles' brother).
Children of Charles Frederick Bower and Amelia Ernestine Klatt are:
(4)Louis Adolph Bower b Jun 17, 1866 d Jul 31, 1955 Sigourney (Bethel Cemetery)
(4)Minnie Sophia Bower b Nov 16, 1867 Harper, IA d Jun 25, 1928 Ro;leau Saskatchewan.
(4)Johanna Matilda Bower b Nov 5, 1870 Harper, IA d Nov 25, 1904 Washington, IA.
(4)Herman Carl (Charles?) Bower b Nov 27, 1871 Harper, IA d Nov 15, 1911 (Roleau Cemetery)
(4)Ernestine Amelia Bower b Nov 23, 1873 Harper, IA d Nov 29, 1877 (Bethel Cemetery)
(4)Emma Adoline Bower b Feb 8, 1877 Harper IA.
(4)Charles Henry Bower b Oct 28, 1878 Harper, IA d Aug 30, 1956 Roleau Saskatchewan.
(4)Clara Alce Bower b Dec 2, 1881 Harper IA m Mar 26, 1902 d Nov 23, 1870 Keota, IA.
(4)Etta Wilhelmina Bower b May 24, 1887 Harper, IA m Nov 2, 1910

What Cheer newspaper obituary Nov 4, 1999:

"Levi L. Bower, 91, of Sigourney died October 26, 1999, at his home. Service was 1 p.m. Friday at Sigourney Christian Church, the Rev. Paul Davidson and the Rev. Frances Baumert officiating. Interment: Sorden Cemetery near Webster.

"Mr. Bower was born June 28, 1908 near South English to Everett and Effie Wren Higgins Bower. He was a 1926 graduate of South English. On October 10, 1934, he married Ila Murial Gosney at her home in Ottumwa. He farmed near South English. They moved to Sigourney in 1957. He worked for Neece Lumberyard and Fagan Elevator. He managed Sigourney Home Oil 1962-1978. He was a member of Sigourney Christian Church.

Survivors include two sons: Lynn Bower and Albert Bower, both of Sigourney; two daughters Louella Bower of Sigourney and Nancy Bower of Oskaloosa; 15 grandchildren; 25 great-grandchildren and a great-great-grandson.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Ila Bower on Dec 24, 1978; a great grandson; three brothers: Leland, Carl and Lewis Bower, and two sisters: Edna Reinier and Dorothy Bower.


This trip began the day Henry Gustavus Bower and Eda Helena Weber were married. and began Jan 1, 1902. It was a visit to see Bower relatives in Iowa.

Left Union Deport at Columbus, Ohio Jan. 1, 1902 at 8:20, arrived at Chicago at 7:30 next morning where we changed cars for Rock Island. Changed cars at Rock Island at 2 o'clock pm for Keota, and arrived at Keota at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 2. Were met at Depot by Ernest Bower and went to his home.

* Ernest Bower, 37 yrs (b Oct 1864) was Eda's brother-in-law, one of Henry's younger brothers.

3rd and 4th and 5th stayed at Ernest until Tuesday Jan. 7. I went to church at the Presbyterian Church. Monday morning and evening went to the Methodist Church.

Tuesday Jan 7. Went out to Chas Bowers for dinner, spent the day and night there. Ernest went with us and fairly groaned over the dinner he ate.

* Chas Bower: Charles Wilhelm Bower, 67 yrs (b Sep 5, 1834); cousin to Eda's father-in-law, Charles Gustavus Bower (b Sep 3 , 1825) who died 14 yrs before Eda and Henry married.

* Mrs Charles Bower: Amelia Ernestine (Klett) Bower, 56 yrs (B Apr 19 1845); married 36 yrs (m Jul 4, 1865), third wife of Charles Wilhelm Bower.

Wednesday Jan 8th. Mr and Mrs Chas Bower took us to see their daughter Tillie Stewart, who lives within 4 miles of Washington where we spent the day and night. Then went back to Chas Bowers, Jan 8 and spent the night. Went the distance of 32 miles, round trip.

* Tillie Stewart: Johanna "Matilda" (Bower) Stewart, 31 yrs (b. Nov 5 1870); married to Fred Stewart (m date unknown). Tillie died about 3 years later (d Nov 25, 1904)

Friday Jan. 10th. Gus Bower and wife Louisa took us to see Mrs. Amelia Bower near White Pigeon (N. Engish) where we stayed all night. This was the coldest day so far. Th distance between Chas Bowers and Amelia B. was 18 miles.

* Gus Bower: August Frederic Bower, 41 yrs (b Mar 30, 1860) oldest living son of Charles Wilhelm Bower by Charle's first wife Caroline Klett.

* Louisa: Louisa Eva (Fixner) Bower, 37 yrs (b May 20, 1864) married 15 yrs to August with whom she had five sons.

* Mrs. Amelia Bower: Amelia (Himler) Bower, 72 yrs (b Oct 22, 1839); sister-in-law to Charles William Bower. Amelia married Charle's brother, Frederick Lewis Bower who had died 22 yrs earlier.

Jan. 11. Saturday. They took us to John Bower, a distance of 17 miles, where we spent the afternoon and night and part of Sunday.

* John Bower: John Samuel Bower, 38 yrs (b. Mar 2 1863); oldest son of Charles Willhelm Bower by Charles' 2nd wife Mary Baumert.

* Emma M. (Polke/Polhe) Bower, 33 yrs (b Jul 18 1868); married 13 yrs to John with whom she had 2 daughters.

Sunday Jan 12 we went to Louis Bower's for supper and spent the night. They live only 1 1/2 miles from John Bower.

* Louis Bower: Louis Adolf Bower, 35 yrs (b Jun 17, 1866); oldest child of Charles and Amelia Bower. Louis' wife: Wilhemine Ernestine (Schneider) Bower.

Monday Jan 13 left Louis Bower for Sigourney where we took dinner with Ed Bower and had a very pleasant day. Distance of 5 1/2 miles. In the afternoon we came back to Keota, a distance of 21 miles. The weather and roads were fine and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

* Ed Bower: Edward Bower, 33 yrs (b Sep 15, 1868); son of Frederick Leibert (levi) Bower, 59 yrs. and Isabelle M. (Grove) Bower. Ed had been married 9 yrs to Winiford M. (Miller) Bower.

Tues Jan 14. Charles Bower took Henry and I down to see Levi Bower, 2 miles from Harper where we spent the day and night. A very nice time. The distance was 7 miles from Keota.

* Levi Bower: Frederick Leibert (Levi) Bower, 59 yrs (b May 7, 1842); brother to Charles Wilhelm Bower. Married 37 yrs to Isabelle M (Grove) Bower with whom he had two sons and two daughters.

Tues Jan 14 we went to Louis Axthelm's who lives 2 miles from Levi Bower. Ernest came on the train to go with us. We met him at Harper and then drove to Mr. Axthelm's. Took dinner, supper and spent the night with them. Their daighter and husband and family were there from Nebraska.

* Louis Axthelm's connection with the family is not yet clear; however: Amelia (Himler) Bower's mother was Ilanna S. (Axthem) Himler. Charles and Levi Bower's mother was Johanna Christine Fredrica (Axthelm) Bower, and the 1880 census shows an aunt - Mary Kat (maiden name?) Exthelm living in the household of Charles W. Bower.

Thurs Jan 16 we went to Harper and spent the day and night with Al Bower. Had a nice time.

* Al Bower: Albert Bower, 35 yrs (b Nov 7, 1866) another son of Levi Bower. Married to Henrietta Caroline (Hoffman) Bower, 34 yrs., with whom he had two daughters.

Friday Jan 17th we came back to Keota again, a distance of 7 miles. Spent Friday Jan 17th and 18th at Keota. Jan 18 EErnest to us drving with all the family. Had a good ride. Went to church in the morning.

* Ernest's family: Ernest Edward Bower, 37 yrs; married 9 yrs (m Jan 16, 1892) to Clara A. Henkle) Bower, 37 yrs (b 1864) with whom he had 3 daughters and 2 sons

Jan 19. Took the 9:20 train to Oskaloosa. Was met at the train by Aunt Etta and Cora, who went with us to gradma's who we found real well. Spent the day with her and Aunt Louisa. Uncle Charlie came in the evening.

* Oskaloosa was the home of Eda (Weber) Bower's family relatives. Grandma would have been Zacholina (Jacobina?) (Gotholtz) Herbig. She was married to Philip Herbig and their daighter Amelia Herbig was the wife of George Weber.

Jan 20. Spent the day with Aunt Etta. Took dinner and supper with her and in the evening Cora came and then we played cards. Uncle Charley and I beat Cora and Henry playing pedro but was beat playing eucher.

Jan 21 Took in the town.

Jan 22. Went out to Aunt Emmas and took dinner and supper with her and in the evening went to Aunt Lenas and had a pleasant time.

Jan 23. Went to see Aunt Susie who we found sick so only stayed a short time.

Jan 24. This was a very cold day. Henry and Uncle Charlie Wray went to the Lost Creek Mine where there was a dust explosion Friday (23rd) when there was 21 lives lost. This was the worst mine explosion ever heard of in the center of Iowa.

Jan 24. This being a Saturday, stayed at home and helped Aunt Luoisa to get ready for Sunday.

Jan. 25. Uncle Charlie Wrays came over for dinner and Aunt Lena, Cora, Herman and Uncle Charlie Herbig took dinner with us. Aunt Etta went to church with us, to the Christian and Methodist in the evening.

Jan 26. Went to Pella. Aunt Etta wen with us. It was about 20 degrees below zero. It was pretty cold. Mr. Renvers and Henry took in the town after dinner and Lou, Aunt Ella and I took in the town. unbt Etta and I invested in a pair owooden shoes, (small0 but Hnry thought he would do it up fine, so bought a pr of No. 7's. He can dance the "clog dance" fine.

Jan 28. Went to Aunt Lena's for supper and spent the evening. Aunt Etta and Philip came over and we played cards. Had a good jolly time.

Jan. 29. Stayed at the house in the morning and in the evening Aunt Etta and I started out to find some friends. Called on Mrs. Miller, Mrs. Newbrandt and Mrs. Blatner.

Jan. 30. Have spent the day at grandmas except went to see Aunt Susie and went to Uncle Charley Wray to play cards.

Jan. 31. Friday - This day was quite cold. Went out to Aunt Emmas in the afternoon. Cora and I drove out. Henry, Philip and Herman walked. Stayed for the evening and had a good time playing cards. Got home about 11 o'clock.

Feb 1. Helped Aunt Louisa in the morning. Mrs. Blatner called in the afternoon and had a nice visit with her.

Sunday Feb 2 1902. The dedication of the new Episcopal church took place today. Henry and I went to the services alone in the morning. The service was preached by the Bishop from Des Moines and was very fine. A Mrs Bennet donated a set of 10 chimes in memory of her father and mother, Mr and Mrs Williamson, costing in the neighborhood of $3500. They were lovely. In the evening went to church again. Aunt Etta, Cora, Ernest went with us. The Bishop confirmed a class of 12. During the forepart of the services, the chimes played "Lead Kindly Light" twice.

Mon Feb 3 1902. Spent the forenoon at grandmas and in the evening started back to Keota and got there about 7:30.

Feb 4, 1902. Were invited to Herman Bower's for dinner. Ernest took us out to Helner's sleigh and it was 17 below zero. Had to go the distance of 5 1/2 miles. It was pretty cold. Spent the evening there and enjoyed ourselves very much playing Crokinole and Carem.

* Herman Bower - Harmen Charles Bower, 30 yrs (b. 27 Nov 1871); son of Charles Wilhelm Bower and Amelia Ernestine (Klett) Bower. Married 4 years (m. 29 Sep 1897) to Bertha Myrtle (Jones) Bower, 23 yrs (b. 1 Jul 1878), with whom he had 2 sons.

Feb 5. Spent part of the day with Herman Bower and towards evening Gus Bower came for us to go to his home. Uncle Charlie and Fred Fisher came over and we played Kansas Jack until about 12 o'clock.

* Gus - August Frederick Bower * Uncle Charlie - Charles Wilhelm Bower

Feb 6 1902. Uncle Charlie and Aunt Tina came over to Gus' for dinner. We stayed all night at Gus' again.

* Uncle Charlie and Aunt Tina - Charles Wilhelm Bower and Amelia Ernestine (Klett) Bower. * After more than a month of visiting family, Eda has become comfortable using family nicknames for Charles and Amelia.

Feb 7 1902. Stayed at Gus' until after dinner when Gus brought us back to Keota in the sled. Have been having sleighing ever since we came back from Oskaloosa.

* Gus - August Frederick Bower

Feb 8. Spent the day with Ernest's family.

* Ernest - Ernest Edward Bower

Feb 9. Went to the Baptist church in the morning. Mr Palmer preached his last sermon, having resigned to take charge of another district. After church, stayed for Sunday School of which Ernest is superintendant. This was also decision day.

Feb 10 1902. Went to Uncle Chas Bower for dinner. Met Mr Jones (father of Mrs Bertha Bower) . . . and Mrs Bennet (neighbors). Had a very nice time. Stayed there til the next day.

* Uncle Chas Bower - Charles Wilhelm Bower * Mr. Jones - Edward Leonides Jones, 46 yrs (b. 11 Sep 1855); father to Charles's daughter-in-law, Bertha Myrtle (Jones) Bower. Edward L. Jones' wife, Clara (Carrie) Ida (Darling) Jones died 10 months earlier (d. 4 Apr 1901). Bertha was the oldest child, and only daughter of Edward and Carrie.

2/11. Uncle Charlie brought us and Minnie Bower and two children to Keota where we took the train to Sigourney and went to Ed Bowers for dinner. Came back to Keota in the evening.

* Uncle Charlie - Charles Wilhelm Bower * Minnie Bower - Minnie Sophia (Bower) Roszmann, 34 yrs (b. 16 Nov 1867); daughter of Charles Wilhelm & Amelia Ernestine Bower. Married 11 yrs (m. 24 Dec 1890) to Frederick George Roszmann, 34 yrs (b. 29 Dec 1867). Minnie and Frederick had a 3rd child, 20 months later, for a total of one girl and 2 boys.

Feb 12 1902. Spent this day with Clara and the children. Went up to the store a little while in the evening.

* Clara - Clara A. (Henkle) Bower, wife of Ernest, and her 2 girls and 2 boys.

Feb 13 1902. This day Clara and I went up to the store. From there Ernest, Clara, Henry and I went to the galary and had our pictures struck, from there went to call on Mrs Sanders, wife of Ernest's partner in business, then went home to get ready to start home..

* Ernest, Clara, Henry and I - Ernest Edward and Clara A. Bower, Henry Gustavus and Eda Helena Bower.

Left Keota at 7:20 and got to Washington where we had to change cars at 8:00 and had to stay there until 10:45, the cause of the delay being a wreck on the main line and the train had to go 45 mi out of the way. Got to Chicago at 8 o'clock next morning - had to lay over two hours. Got home at 7:30 in the evening Feb 14th. Altogether we had a very nice and enjoyable trip.

(The above was copied as written by Eda Bower in a small notebook which is in the possession of Anna Bower Mylander/Joan Gehle.)

* Eda Helena Weber, b. Dec 20, 1869 Columbus, Clinton Twp, Ohio; d Jul 24, 1951, Columbus, Ohio. Married Jan 1, 1902; to Henry Gustavus Bower, b Oct 10, 1856, Linworth, Ohio; d Oct 30, 1935, Columbus, Ohio *

Source: George Kuntz. Some footnotes to this diary were submitted by John Werner.