Muscatine County Iowa
Here is what the abbreviations in the bios stand for: far: farm; Co.: company or county; dir: dealer; IVA: Iowa Volunteer Artillery; IVC: Iowa Volunteer Cavalry; IVI: Iowa Volunteer Infantry; P.O.: Post Office; S. or Sec.: section; and st.: street.
Source: History of Muscatine County Iowa, Biographical Section, 1879, page 671
W. A. COOPER, dealer in ready-made clothing, hats, caps, and gents' furnishing goods, Cedar street; residence, corner Cherry and Sixth, Wilton; a grandson of Wm. Cooper and Rachael Philson, natives of Pennsylvania; the former was a Captain during the Revolutionary war; they had seven children, five sons, the fifth being James, the father of Mr. C., who was born in Westmoreland Co., Penn., in 1808, where his first occupation was clerking; having obtained a business education, at an early age, he engaged in the mercantile business at Cooperstown, a handsome town of Pennsylvania, laid out and named by him for the family; Mr. Cooper did an extensive business there, not alone in merchandising, but in iron and oil, and also dealt extensively in live stock. At Meadville, March, 1830, he married Amanda, daughter of Col. Cochran, an officer of the militia at Meadville, born in Northumberland Co., Penn., and marched to the rescue of Perry at the battle of Lake Erie, Sept. 10, 1813; he was a resident of Meadville for thirty-five years; a Prothonotary for many years, also a member of the Legislature. She was born at Meadville, Penn., March 10, 1811. He remained in business at Cooperstown until 1853, when they removed to Iowa, landing at Muscatine in April of that year, but finally settled on a farm in Cedar Co., two miles northeast of what is now Wilton, where he remained until his death in 1874, leaving a widow, now a resident of Wilton, with her youngest daughter and five children, two sons (both of whom served in the late war) and three daughters; lost the second, a daughter, in Pennsylvania. The subject of this sketch was the second son and fifth born, and born at Cooperstown, Penn., Aug. 15, 1844, and, in the 9th year of his age, came to Iowa, where, at the age of 18, he enlisted in the 35th I. V. I., Co. G, Capt. Dickson, with which he participated at Vicksburg, first and second taking of Jackson, Tupelo, Miss., Nashville, taking of the Spanish Fort, opposite Mobile, and mustered out at the close of the war at Davenport. After remaining at home for three years, he came to Wilton, and for two years was without any particular business, and June 23, 1870, he married Bell, daughter of Geo. Witmer and Catherine Wirt, natives of Northumberland Co., Penn., and for many years residents of Perry Co., Penn., where she was born May 6, 1848; about the year 1866, they came to Wilton, where the father died January, 1877, the mother having since found a home with Mr. and Mrs. Cooper, Mrs. C. being the youngest of the family. After his marriage, Mr. C. formed a partnership with Charles Witmer in the dry goods and grocery trade in a store on corner of Cedar and Fourth streets, which he continued for two years, and after closing out his business, he clerked for F. Bacon until 1876, when he became a partner of Wm. H. Bacon, a brother of his former employer, in his present business, which continued until his death of his partner May 4, 1878; the September following, he purchased his interest in the business, and has since carried the largest stock of the greatest variety of goods in his line to be found in this part of Muscatine. They have three children, the eldest of whom is Wirt A., born May, 1871; Charles C., April 10, 1873, and Elsie M., Dec. 28, 1875. Mr. and Mrs. C. are members of Presbyterian Church, of which he is Elder and Superintendent of Sabbath School, and is a member of A. O. U. W. Security, No. 100, in which he has held various offices.
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