Jackson Township History 
The township was one of the first settled outside the old strip. Its congressional name is number 74, range 11 west. The lands in this township were surveyed and offered for sale in 1846, although the most desirable lads were claimed, and a large portion of the township improved, prior to that time. The South Skunk forms the north boundary, which boundary is in consequence very irregular.

For farming purposes and stock-raising this township takes a front rank. The first part of the township settled was what was formerly known as the Rock Creek neighborhood, and the first settlement was made by Wm Scearcy on the last day of April, 1843. According to treaty stipulations the country was to be open for settlement on the first day of May , and in order not to be late in profiting by securing the advantages which promptness always vouchsafes. Mr Scearcy started a day in advance. Although he started ahead of time he was not there any too soon to secure the desirable location where the first claim was staked out. Although Mr Scearcy had his claim disputed he succeeded in establishing himself on it, where he still lives. In the competition for the best claims not unfrequently arose, and for want of time and the pressing demand for speedy arbitration, these disputed were sometimes settled by recourse to pugilistic skill. The claim to Twin Groves, a very desirable location, was settled in this way, and the winner gave the loser a yoke of oxen for the future undisputed possession of the claim. Among the first to locate in the Rock Creek country, and who came about the time Mr Scearcy came, were Aaron Miller, Robert Blacker, Wm Webb, and Richard Quinton, the latter being elected from the county to the first constitutional convention, and afterword for several years, prior to his leaving the county, permanently identified with the politics of the county.

It was in the bounds of this township that Wapello died. Having returned with a number of his tribe, early in the spring of 1844, for the purpose of making maple syrup, there being splendid facilities for this business among the maple groves of Rock Creek, he became very much intoxicated and in this condition he contracted a severe cold, which resulted in his death. After his death the remaining members of the tribe dispatched a young warrior to Richland township for a coffin, which was brought by Mr Samuel Hardesty to convey Wapello’s body to Agency City, which he accordingly did. The entire expense of the coffin and the trip to Agency, amounting to some thirty dollars, was particularly careful in looking after that gentleman’s comfort during the trip and paying all the expenses before he left.

Such an excellent country as the Rock Creek district was known to be did not remain long without a large increase of population, and soon farms, cottages and school houses were to be seen in all directions. For a long time the citizens experienced great inconvenience for wasn’t of a postoffice, ant it was not till the fall of 1852 that a post-office was established in this township. It was kept at the house of Samuel Bowman, who was postmaster. The name of the office was Olean, and in the fall of 1858 was removed to Ioka. There are at present three postoffices of easy access; one at Ioka in the southeastern part of the county; one called Walden, in section 18, and one in section 3, just across the river in Lancaster township.

Of churches there are quite a number of organizations and some very good church buildings. Rev Mr Spainhour, a Baptist minister was probably the first of this denomination who preached in the township; he was followed by Rev Mr Tanehill, who preached in the house of John Cox as early as 1843.

The Baptist church of Rock Creek was organized in 1844. The original members were Robert Scearcy, Mary Scearcy, William Scearcy, Sarah Scearcy, and John Miller. In 1850 a frame church-building was erected at a cost of $750. It was dedicated the following year by Jacob Spainhour, who was the first man to preach in that neighborhood. John W Talley, Amos Simmons, Cypert Talley, Benj Hollingsworth, Reuben Henderson, H F Walker, Stacy Rogers and Jesse Edwards have at different times been pastors of the church. The present membership numbers thirty-five. The church has had a varied career of prosperity and adversity; a short time after its organization there was an addition there was an addition of one hundred and fifty-two members.

Hopewell church, located on section fourteen, belongs to the denomination known as the Separate Baptists. It was organized in August, 1865. John W Talley, Benjamin Hollingsworth, D S Hutton, D Mullannee, Isaac Petree, Samuel Hutton, Mary Talley, N E Mullanee, Eliza Petree, Mary Hutton, Catharine Hutton, Phoebe M Brown, Ruth S McConnell, Lydia Nelson, Nancy R, Wood, Mary J. Miller, M. E. McConnell, Daniel Henson, Angelina Nelson and M A Hollingsworth were the original members. A frame church was erected in the fall of 1868 at an expense of $1,200. It was dedicated in the winter by 1868 by John W Talley; John W Talley, Benj Hollingsworth, J T Walker, Chas Lyon and Reuben Henderson have been pastors at various times. Jesse Edwards is the present pastor. The membership at present is twenty-two.

The first election was held in the township in the April, 1844, which was the first election held in the county, this having been a separate election precinct form the first. In 1850 the township had a population of 603, in 1856 it was 1,003, and by the census of 1875 it appears that the population was then 1,467. There were 269 dwelling houses and 275 families. The following are the officers of the township at present:

Justices of the Peace—D C Baker, who is also a member of the board of supervisors, and T B Meradith.

Constables—J W Reiner and Lewis Smithart

Clerk—W B Woods

Trustees—Conrad Bender, W C Harris, Joseph Bush

Assessor—T B Meradith

Reference: History of Keokuk County, Iowa, 1880

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