Muscatine County, Iowa
Muscatine Journal & News-Tribune
Centennial Edition
31 May 1940

Section 4 - Page 25, Submitted by Charlene Nichols Hixon, April 3, 2012


Employment was provided for a large crew in the Grange factory when it was in operation at the northeast corner of Third street and Mulberry avenue during the years of 1875 and 1876.

Group Photo ~ In the picture are: Top row, standing, reading from left to right, first, unidentified; John Ziegler, Andy McFern, Brown Hampton, Thomas Wiles, William D. Adams, Louis Maxson, Terrence T. Doyle, Emil Groeschel and John Ellis.

Middle row, seated, Clay Sheely, Mr. Gilmore, Thomas Berry, J. L. Cook, an unidentified person, George Cadle; standing Harry Keesy, Mary E. Eversmeyer, who served as secretary and bookkeeper.

Bottom row, William Brockway, George Wiles, Peter Nischwitz, Alfred Adams, Robert Barnard, unidentified man, William Price, superintendent of the blacksmithing department; Solly Walker, unidentified boy and Al Noetlich. Others who worked at the factory but are not in the picture were Daniel M. Bridges, Theodore price, Matthias Trick, Henry Miller, Will Harris, L. W. Belden, Cassius Belden and Thomas Belden.

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Every Saloon in City Was Closed During Rule of
Hon. John A. Parvin, City’s First Temperance Mayor

Muscatine’s original “temperance mayor” was the Hon. John A. Parvin. He was elected to office on a temperance ticket in 1854, and later that same year made his term in office unique by closing every saloon in the city. Throughout his career no saloon was either licensed or tolerated in the city.

More than a decade prior to his election as mayor, Mr. Parvin became the organizer and teacher of the first Sunday school and grammar school in the territory. Like most early settlers of the community, his activities and accomplishments were many and varied.

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Undoubtedly one of the outstanding accomplishments of Mr. Parvin’s career was his participation in the move making the town of Bloomington the city of Muscatine. First steps toward changing the name were taken by Mr. Parvin while serving in the Iowa General Assembly in 1850. He prepared and conducted the bill which definitely established the city of Muscatine.

Mr. Parvin migrated to the town of Bloomington in 1839, while still a young man, and immediately earned a place of prominence in the community. At the time there were no schools or churches in the community, but Mr. Parvin immediately instigated the move which led to the organization of the Methodist Episcopal church and the first common school in the community.

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He served as teacher in the first Sunday school, which was opened a month after his arrival in the city. The first Sunday school was held in an unfinished building. Church meetings were held by turns at the various hospitable homes of the settlement.

Mr. Parvin was also instrumental in the organization of the first temperance society in the territory on Oct. 10, 1840. During the next decade, he was engaged as proprietor of a general store here and clerk of the district court, a position which he held after Iowa became a state in 1846.

Elected to the state general assembly in 1850, Mr. Parvin played a major part in the passage of the first prohibition law in the state, prohibiting the sale of intoxicating liquors, including wine and beer. Four years later he began his term as “temperance mayor,” and three years thereafter he was elected to the Constitution convention which framed the state constitution.

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He served as temporary chairman of the convention, and was appointed chairman of the legislative committee. In the latter capacity, he reported and carried through a provision which provided for biennial sessions of the assembly, and its meeting on the first of January.

In 1865, Mr. Parvin was elected for a full term of four years to the state senate, and during his service there introduced the bill creating the state reform school and served on the committee for the location of that school and of the orphan’s home. He served as one of the leading trustees of the reform schools for more than 18 years. Following his retirement from the senate, Mr. Parvin lived in comparative retirement on his rural residence located three miles from Muscatine, in Bloomington township.

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The Ogilvie House, in this city, contains 120 large and well furnished rooms. Can the LeClaire House, of Davenport, beat it, friend Saunders? – Nov. 20, 1852.

A new postoffice has been established in Poston’s Grove, Cedar county. It is called Inland. John Hallock is Postmaster. – Aug. 25, 1852.

A new Post Office has been established at Center Grove, Muscatine Co., Iowa. John B. Hanson, Post Master. – Sept. 25, 1852.

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Page created April 6, 2012 by Lynn McCleary