This township lies in the western tier of Tama county townships and comprises all of township 84 north, range 16, west of the fifth principal meridian. It is bounded on the north by Spring Creek; on the west by Marshall county; on the south by Indian Village township; and on the east by Howard. Deer Creek enters on section 4, and flowing in a southeasterly direction, passes through sections 3, 10, 11, 14, 23 and 24, makes exit near the northeast corner of section 25. Prairie creek rises on section 9, runs in a southeasterly direction through sections 16, 15, 22 and on section 23, empties into Deer creek - Sugar creek enters on the northwest quarter of section 6, and flowing in a southerly direction through sections 7, 18, 17, 19, 29 and 32, leaves the township. There are a number of small tributaries of these streams, so that the township is well watered as any in the county.


There is an abundance of building stone in this township, many quarries have been opened. Not only this township but the surrounding country is supplied from these points. The surface of this township is generally rolling and in some places hilly. There are tracts of fine prairie land and a number of excellent farms. The soil on these prairies is a rich dark loam, and upon the timer lands of a lighter nature mixed with clay and vegetable mould. Along Deer creek there is a little natural timber, and in the southern part of the township there is a good supply.


The Toledo & Northwestern Railroad passes through this township. There is one town within its borders - Garwin.

Carlton township was so named in honor of James P. Carlton, one of the first District Judges of the Fourth Judicial District.




The first to settle in what is now Carlton township was ANTHONY BRICKER, from Indiana, in the spring of 1856. He crossed the Iowa river at Indiantown, ferrying his household goods over in his wagon box which he had caulked sufficiently to keep out the water. He stopped a short time near where Brown’s sawmill now stands and shortly afterwards selected the northeast quarter of section 30 as a claim, where he erected a log cabin twelve by twelve feet. He was a married man having a wife and two children and is remembered as an accommodating, genial companion, an intelligent man and a good neighbor. He remained on this place until 1852, when he sold his claim to H. L. Dobson and removed to section 34, where he remained until 1857, when he sold out to Dr. N. Welton and removed to Kansas. He is now living in Montana.


The next settlement made in this township was in 1852 by David, Levi and Jacob Appelgate, brothers. David is now a resident of Toledo and Levi lives in Nebraska.


In 1853, the little settlement was increased by the arrival of Stephen Dobson and his son, C. W. Dobson, and their families; Dr. J. S. Haynes, Jacob Lamb, James Laughlin, sr., James Laughlin, jr., George Laughlin and Samuel Bricker, a brother of Anthony.

C. W. Dobson and his father, Stephen, came from Indiana, arriving here on the 26th of September, 1852. C. W. located on section 30, where he remained for a number of years and then removed to section 8, where he still lives. Stephen died there.


John Wilson came from Illinois, and settled in Carlton township in 1854. He lived for many years in Indian Village, dying there in 1879.

JONATHAN PETERSON came to Carlton township in October, 1854, and settled on section 18. He came here with teams, bringing James Barrows and wife, D. Gray and wife, George Brown and Ulysses and James Seely. The first winter was spent in Indian Village township. Jonathan Peterson was born in Vermont, in 1800. When quite young he went to New York and when eighteen came west to Illinois, where he spent four years. He then purchased a buffalo and an Indian dog and started on his return to New York, giving exhibitions on the way. Soon after his return he was married to Abigail Chapman, also a native of Vermont, born in 1804. Soon after his marriage, he engaged in farming and afterwards in mercantile and banking business until 1847, when he removed with his family to Kendall county, Illinois, where he had previously purchased several hundred acres of land. He engaged in farming in Illinois until 1854, when he sold his land, moved with his family to Tama county, Iowa, and entered several hundred acres of land in Carlton township. He made this his home until his death, which occurred in February, 1862. His widow died in March, 1880.


Mr. and Mrs. Peterson reared a family of nine children. Mr. Peterson was highly respected as a man and held the confidence of all who knew him. For a number of years he was Chairman of the County Board of Supervisors.


JOHN PETERSON came to Tama county with his parents, who settled in Carlton township in 1854, but made permanent settlement in 1855. He is a son of Jonathan Peterson and was born in Genesee county, New York, May 11, 1833. His marriage with Miss Mary Furguson, a native of Indiana, took place on the 22d of February, 1866. Miss Furguson was born in 1848. This marriage has been blessed with three children: Ida A., Eva L. and Roscoe C. Mr. Peterson is one of the most prosperous farmers of the county. His farm contains 1,000 acres under good cultivation, with a commodious dwelling and good barns for his stock. In politics Mr. Peterson is a Republican and has held various local offices. He takes an active interest in county and township affairs, showing an especial interest in educational matters; for, as the advantages for his own early education were limited, he is desirous to do everything that will improve the opportunities of to-day. Mr. Peterson is a kind father, a good neighbor and is respected by all who know him.


James Lewis came to Carlton township from Illinois in 1855, and settled on section 29. He soon sold that place to Samson Strong, but still lives in the township.


Mr. Merritt came during the same year from Illinois and settled on section 28. He died there a number of years ago, mourned by a large circle of friends. His widow still lives in the township.


Alexander Reed, from Illinois, settled on section 16, of Carlton, in 1855. He remained a few years when he sold out and returned to Illinois. The Haskell and Baldwin party settled in the central part of the township in 1855. Jackson Guthrie came the same year with his family and settled in Carlton township. He is still a citizen here.


The Haskell and Baldwin party settled in the central part of the township in 1855.


Jackson Guthrie came the same year with his family and settled in Carlton township. He is still a citizen here.


Stephen Harris, sr., and Hick Dowell settled on section 29 this year. Both of these parties have left. A son of Mr. Harris still lives in the township.


Benjamin Clark, a brother-in-law of Mr. Harris, came from Indiana and settled near Anthony Bricker’s place. He remained until the time of his death, just before the war.


Peter Moir and Daniel Defrance came from Pennsylvania in the fall of 1855 and located on section 6. Peter Moir now lives in Howard township and Defrance is in Hamilton county, Iowa.


Hiram Fay and Edwin Libbey were also settlers of 1855.


Another valuable addition was made to the settlement in 1855, by the arrival of Dr. William L. Conant and family. The father is noticed at length in the Medical chapter.


MARION A. CONANT, son of Dr. William L. Conant, was born in St. Joseph county, Michigan, on the 8th of April, 1852. In 1855, his parents came to the county and settled in Carlton township where they remained until the spring of 1881, when they moved to Gladbrook, at which place the father is engaged in the practice of medicine. Marion was reared on his father’s farm, receiving a common school education. He was married, December 28, 1873, to Miss Eva B. Buihner, who was born to Oswego, Ill., September 15, 1855. They have one child, Addie B.


Mr. and Mrs. Connant are members in good standing in the Christian Church at Garwin.  Mr. Conant is a Republican and has been elected to several local offices.


GEORGE W CONANT, also son of Dr. William L. Conant, was born March 12, 1855, in Van Buren county, Michigan.  A short time after his birth, his parents emigrated to Carlton township, as stated, where George grew to manhood.  He was educated in the common schools.  On the 23d of December, 1880, he was married to Miss Mary A. Snodgrass, who was born in Jackson county, Iowa.  She is a daughter of Hugh and Lucinda (Clark) Snodgrass, natives of Ohio, both born in 1832.  Mr. and Mrs. Conant habe reared a family of five children.  Mr. Conant is a staunch Republican and has held various local offices.


In 1856, Rev. Andrew Donaldson arrived and settled on section 25.  In 1857, L. N. B. C. Burt came and settled on section 7.  The following year Newton Mudgett, now a prominent merchant of Garwin, settled on section 29.  William Krouse came in 1859, and located on section 23.


L. N. B. C. BURT is a native of Vermont, born in 1829, and when four years old moved with his parents to New York, where he grew to manhood, receiving a common school education.  He was married in 1855, to Miss Mary Peterson, born in New York State, in 1838.  In 1857, he removed to Tama county and settled on section 7, in Carlton township, where he still resides.  Mr. Burt's parents were natives of Vermont.  His mother died in New York, in 1850, aged forty-six; his father died in Warren county, Iowa, in 1881, aged 84.  They reared a family of seven children, the subject of this sketch being the fourth.  Mr. Burt has a fine farm of 160 acres, under good cultivation.  He is the father of six children - Willard S., George F., Louis H., deceased; Charles L., Grant C. and Bertha M.


WILLIAM KROUSE is a native of Germany, born December 16, 1828.  He is a son of Conrad B. and Francisca (Osthans) Krouse, the father being born September 3, 1801, the mother, October 10, 1811.  In 1848, his father emigrated to Richland county, Ohio, and engaged in farming until 1863 or 1864, when he removed to Cleveland.  Here he lived a retired life, and in 1874, the father passed away.  His mother, in later years, was married to William Schaper, and now resides in Carlton township.  William finished his education in the high schools of Brunswick, Germany, came to Ohio with his parents, and was there engaged in the mercantile business until 1851.  In 1852, he came to Davenport, Iowa, where he again engaged in the mercantile line.  In 1851, he came to Tama county and entered a tract of 1,280 acres of land in Carlton township for his father.  In 1859, he purchased a part of this land from his father, and removing here with his family, engaged in farming, which business he still follows.  William was married in 1856, to Miss Barbara Miller, a native of Switzerland, born November 8, 1838.  There have been seventeen children born to them, fifteen of whom are now living - William, Mary B., Frank, Robert, Minnie, Emma, Oscar, Barnhard, Fritz, Louisa, Ernest, Charles, Ella F., Sophia and Clara.


SAMUEL E. BEERY came to Tama county in the fall of 1862, and rented a farm in Howard township where he followed farming until June, 1863, when he purchased and moved upon the farm where he now lives, in Carlton township. Mr. Beery was born in Fairfield county, Ohio, where he grew to manhood. He received a common school education. May 20, 1851, he was united in wedlock with Miss Mary A. Hammitt, a native of Ohio. Eleven children have been born to them – Oliver D., Sarah A., George W., Caroline V., Ida C., Lizzie L., Charles F., Emma E., Lillie J., Lottie M. and Louise E. Mr. and Mrs. Beery are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Mr. Beery takes an active interest in local politics, and is at present a member of the Board of Township Trustees. His farm contains 203 acres, in a good state of cultivation.


JOHN HEIDLEBAUGH settled in Carlton township in 1864. He was born in Perry county, Ohio, in 1836. He received his education in the common schools, and assisted his parents on the farm, which vocation he still follows. In 1861, he was joined in matrimony with Miss Mary Mericle, a native of Perry county, Ohio, born in 1840. In 1864, Mr. Heidlebaugh came to Tama county, settling on section 3, Carlton township, his present residence, and has now a well improved farm containing 96 acres. Mr. and Mrs. Heidlebaugh are the parents of six children; Elmer E., Amanda C., Emanuel S., David W., John C. and Ethen A.


NAPOLEON BYWATER came to Carlton to settle in 1866. He was born in Baltimore, Maryland, October 3, 1841. When he was two years old his parents went to Zanesville, Ohio, remaining one year and a half; they then removed to New Albany, Indiana, and there lived until 1848, when they emigrated to Cedar county, Iowa. From there they went to Jackson county, and then to Tama county, located at Union Grove in Spring Creek township. They made this their home until 1860, when they again made a move and this time went to Kansas where the father was killed in a saw-mill. The following year, in March, they returned to Spring Creek, and in August, 1862, Napoleon enlisted in Company F., 28th Infantry, Iowa, and served until the close of the war, receiving his discharge July 30, 1865. He took part in many battles, but was fortunate in receiving only one slight wound in the engagement at Sabine Cross Roads, Louisiana. On receiving his discharge he returned to Tama county. He was married in January, 1866, to Mrs. Sarah (Fitzgerald) Wilson, a native of Pennsylvania, born August 28, 1840. Mrs. Bywater had two children by her first marriage. Six children have blessed her second marriage, two of whom are dead. They removed to their present home in 1866. Their farm contains 340 acres, valued at $25 per acre.


PETER S. VAN HORN, son of Bernard and Elizabeth (Davis) Van Horn, was born in Clark county, Ohio, in 1830. His parents were natives of Harrison county, Virginia, his father being born there in 1802; his mother in 1803. In 1829, the parents removed to Clark county, Ohio, and followed farming and various other occupations until 1844, when they removed to Peoria county, Illinois. In 1855, they emigrated into Clinton county, Iowa, where the Mother died in 1873, and the father in 1874. Peter S. was reared under his father’s instruction and received limited common school education. He was married, in 1854, to Miss Mary Rendall, a native of Peoria county, Illinois, born in 1889. Her parents were both born in 1835. Her mother died in Peoria county, in 1853. Her father enlisted in an Illinois regiment in 1862, and died of disease at Keokuk, Iowa, in 1863. Mr. and Mrs. Van Horn have been blessed with eight children, three of whom are now living, George, Louis and Lawson. They have also an adopted daughter named Nettie.


HENRY ROSS became a resident of Carlton township in 1869. He was born in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, in 1819. He grew to manhood on a farm in his native county and received a common school education. He was married on the 30th of January, 1845, to Miss Rachel Townsend, who was born in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania. She bore him twelve children, three of whom are now living, Mary E., now Mrs. Hall, J. T. and Anna C., now Mrs. Townsend, who were all born in Pennsylvania. In the spring of 1869, he went with his family to Tennessee, remaining about six months, when he came to Tama and purchased a farm in Carlton township, where he still resides. J. T., son of Henry Ross was born December 15, 1849. He received a common school education, came with the family to Tama county, and August 29, 1873, was united in marriage with Miss Belle M. Dickey, a native of Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania. She was born August 26, 1852. Five children have been born to them, four of whom are now living, Maggie M., Harvey W., Rachel E. and James D. The family are all Presbyterians. They are Republicans in politics, and the father cast his first vote, in 1840, for General Harrison.




The first organization of this township included the present territory comprised in that part of Indian Village lying north of the Iowa river, Spring Creek and Lincoln townships. The first election was held at the house of William Murty, on section 4, in what is now Indian Village township, on the first Monday in April, 1854, and the following officers were elected –- Trustees, Jacob Lamm, David Bricker and William Murty; Clerk, H. L. Dobson; Assessor, J. S. Haynes; Justice of the Peace, Stephen Dobson; Constable, Harrison Wiseheart. For a number of years after this, elections were held at the house of Anthony Bricker, on section 34. After a time, Indian Village township presented a petition to the County Judge to organize the same as a full congressional independent township, but as Carlton had expended a considerable amount of money in building a bridge across a bayou in the territory proposed to be added to Indian Village, a remonstrance was presented which resulted in refunding the amount of money expended. The first election in this township after it had assumed its present boundaries was held in November, 1856. The present officers of the township are –- Trustrees, C. W. Dobson, S. E. Berry and A. Brinkerhoff; Clerk, G. L. Springer; Justices, Hugh Snodgrass and J. Chambers; Constables, Willard Burt and James M. Mason; Assessor, J. X. Chambers.




The first store in the township was opened on the northeast quarter of section 26, by Enos Thomas, in 1877, in a building formerly used as a dwelling. He converted the lower story into a suitable place to keep goods and moved his family into the story above. He kept here, for a time, a stock of general merchandise. He is now in the same trade in Garwin.


The first school building was erected in district number nine, now the independent district of Sugar Creek. It was a frame building 22 x 28 feet and cost $700. It was located on the southeast corner of the north half of the southeast quarter of section 30, and is still used for school purposes. The first school taught was in the winter of 1861-2 by John Sterling. There was an attendance of thirty scholars. The first marriage was Harrison Wiseheart to Miss Ann Appelgate, in spring of 1855. The ceremony was performed by Judge Vermilya. Mr. Wiseheart is now living in Marshall county, and Mrs. Wiseheart died there in March, 1882, leaving four children. The first birth was a son to Jacob and Melinda Lamm, born November 8, 1853. He was named Stephen Monroe, and is now married and lives at Montour.

The first death was that of Ezra Church, who came to the township in 1857, and died the following year; he was from Michigan and was buried across the line in Marshall county.


The first physician in the township was Dr. J. S. Haynes. The second was Dr. Hiram Welton who settled on section 34, in July, 1855. He practiced in this township until 1877, when he removed to Indian Village township, where he has since followed his profession.

Samuel J. Lewis came to the township from Illinois in 1864, and built a blacksmith shop on section 28, where he yet works at his trade in connection with farming. This was the first blacksmith shop in the township.


The first school here was taught during the summer of 1857, by Miss Emily Dobson, in a log house built by Anthony Bricker. It was located on section 34, where the house of Dr. Welton now stands; was 12 x 12 feet and erected by Mr. Bricker at his own expense.

There are now ten independent school districts in the township, all having good substantial school buildings.


The first husking bee in Carlton township was held in the fall of 1855, at the residence of Hick Harris. The room was only about 14 x 14 feet and every body in the whole region was invited. Mr. Merritt played the fiddle, and it finally turned into a dance. The puncheon floor rattled so the tones of the fiddle could barely be heard above the din, and the dust that was kicked up fairly made the dancers sneeze. The object was to get the young folks acquainted and it took some time to get the maids over their shyness, but when things did get to running, as expressed by John Peterson, “it was a terror.”


The Vineyard postoffice, in Carlton township, was established with T. N. Mudget as first postmaster. He was the only one that ever served. The office has been discontinued.




The first religious services in Carlton were held at the house of Stephen Dobson, in the spring of 1854, by Rev. William Morrow, of the Protestant Methodist church. During the summer of this year a church organization was effected through the efforts of this minister with the following membership: Stephen Dobson, Elizabeth Dobson, H. L. Dobson, E. A. Dobson, Jacob Lamm, Melinda Lamm, Rachel Lamm, Rebecca Haynes, C. W. Dobson, Mary M. Dobson, Harrison Wiseheart and Olive M. Dobson. The first officer is were Stephen Dobson, leader and ordained elder; H. L. Dobson, steward. This society increased in numbers until the membership reached forty. It continued in existence until 1882. Elder Morrow was succeeded by William Lockard; then followed W. H. Roberts, D. H. Hollenbeck, Rev. Page, William Griffith, Elder Cook and Elder Winn. For a number of years there was no regular preaching.


An organization was effected at the Rock creek Presbyterian church upon the 16th of June, 1882, under Rev. M. S. Drury, of the United Brethren Church, of Toledo, with a membership of twenty-three. Meetings are now held once in two weeks, by Rev. R. J. Laughlin.

A union Sabbath school was organized in 1861 by Rev. C. W. Dobson, at the Sugar creek school house, with forty scholars. H. L. Dobson was Secretary and Treasurer. This school continued in existence until 1882, when it was re-organized and the meetings are held at the Presbyterian church, with John Rose as Superintendent and Andrew Laughlin as Secretary. There is now an attendance of about forty and meetings are held every Sabbath.


The organization of the “Society of Friends” was effected at Sugar creek school house in 1880 where they continued to hold services until the fall of 1882, when they erected a church building across the line in Marshall county, where they still continue to hold meetings.

The first services of Carlton Seventh Day Baptist Church, were held by Rev. Maxson Babcock, at his dwelling, in the fall of 1861. An organization was effected the following fall by this minister, assisted by Elder C. A. Burdick, with the following membership: Rev. M. Babcock and wife, B. C. Babcock, Phoebe A. Babcock, Alfred Knight and wife and Lydia Knight. The first officers were J. W. Knight, Deacon; D. C. Babcock, Treasurer. Rev. Maxson Babcock was the first pastor, and continued in charge fifteen years, when in 1879 he was followed by Rev. J. T. Davis, who remained until 1881, when Rev. Babcock again took charge and remained until relieved by H. B. Lewis, who has charge at the present time.


After organization, meetings were held at the house of Rev. Babcock until the membership was much increased; then meetings were held at different school houses until 1880, when a building was erected in Garwin, at a cost of $1,000. Services are now regularly held weekly and there is a membership of seventy. In connection with this church a Sabbath school was organized in 1872, which has been continued to the present time with A. M. Brinkerhoff as Superintendent.


The pioneer worker in the church was REV. MAXON BABCOCK, who came to Tama county and settled in Carlton township in 1881, where he still resides. He was born in Clark county, Ohio, May 5, 1817, where he grew to manhood receiving a liberal education. He also spent a number of years in Shelby county, Ohio. When he was but fifteen years of age he experienced religion and joined the Seventh Day Baptist Church. He was married on the 1st of September, 1835, to Miss Phiethata Davis, of West Virginia. They have had six children, two of whom are living. Mr. Babcock is a Republican in politics and has held various local offices.


An organization of the Free Will Baptist Church was effected in 1856 by Rev. Andrew Donaldson, with the following membership: Rev. A. Donaldson and wife; Sampson Strong, wife and daughter. Soon after the membership increased to twenty. Meetings were generally held at private residences. The organization was discontinued in 1860.


REV. ANDREW DONALDSON, who was the main worker in this church, is a native of Youngstown, Trumbull county, Ohio, born March 24, 1807, removing with his parents, when he was three years old, to Cuyohoga county, which was one vast wilderness. Here Andrew spent his boyhood days attending the pioneer schools, which consisted of log cabins with slab benches. In those days the best recommendation for a teacher was his muscular powers, consequently Andrew's early instruction was very limited, but after years of reading and study he acquired a good practical education. In 1828, he experienced religion and united with the Congregational Church, remaining a member of that organization until 1837, when he united with the Free Will Baptist Church and served as a minister of that denomination for twenty-three years. In 1860, owing to age and infirmities, he retired from active life. Mr. Donaldson has been earnest in his religious work and thinks it wrong for a pastor to receive compensation, referring with pride to the fact that he has never accepted one cent for his services. In politics he was originally a Democrat, but when the slavery question began to enter into politics he advocated freedom for all and worked with the Anti-Slavery party, casting his first vote as a Free-Soiler in 1844. Since the organization of the Republican party he has been one of its warm supporters and has held several local offices. Mr. Donaldson came west to Jackson county, Iowa in 1845, and in 1853, came to Tama county, locating on section 25, in Carlton township where he still resides. He was united in marriage with Roxana Norton, in 1829, who was a native of Vermont. Eleven children have been born to them, ten of whom are now living. His wife died in Carlton township, March 23, 1869, aged sixty-three years, one month and two days. Mr. Donadson's father died in the spring of 1883, aged seventy-five years, eleven months and seventeen days.


The Christian Church at Spring Creek was organized December 27, 1858, by Elder EPHRAIM PHILLIPS, with the following members--George R. RIDER, Eliza J. RIDER, David BOWEN, Mary E. BOWEN, Esther L. BOWEN, Joseph MILHOLLAND, Henrietta MILLHOLLAND, James H. BILL and Cordelia L. BILL.


J. H. Bill was the first Deacon.  Elder Phillips continued in charge until 1860, when he was succeeded by Elder Berry and he by Elder A. Cordner, who is still in charge.  The present membership is forty, and services are held at the school-house at Garwin.  There is also a Sabbath school in connection with this church.


Rock Creek Presbyterian Church was organized in 1854, by Rev. Mason, in Marshall county, and took its name from a creek in that county.  In 1868, they built a church 20 x 40 feet, at a cost of $1,500, located on the southeast corner of the southeast quarter of section 17.  Services were held by this denomination until 1882, since which time they have been held at the U. B. church.


An organization of the German Lutheran Church was effected in 1875, by Rev. S. Meyer, with a membership of fourteen, as follows:  Mr. and Mrs. Schneider and three children, Frederick Smith and wife, Adam Smith and wife, Christian Heneline and wife, Mr. Mankie and wife, Idor Beery and wife and John Kinsley and wife.  Mr. Mankie was elected Deacon.  The first meeting was held at the White Pigeon school-house.  Rev. Meyer remained in charge until 1878, when he was succeeded by Rev. Edward Haimick, who yet remains.  Meetings are held once in two weeks and the membership remains about the same as at organization.




A special election was held at the Centre school-house on the 18th day of July, 1879, for the purpose of voting upon the question of levying a five per cent tax upon the property of Carlton Township, in the aid of the Toledo and Northwestern Railroad, resulting in favor of making such levy, provided a station was located and a depot built within the limits of the township, and located five rods south of the north line of section 23.


Afterward the company relinquished their claim to this tax - an occurrence so unusual that we give the notice made by them in full, as follows:


"To the trustees of Carlton township, in the county of Tama, and State Iowa, and the Board of Supervisors of said county:  You are hereby notified that the Toledo and Northwestern Railway hereby withdraw the notice which it has heretofore given, that is has complied with the provisions of an order of the Board of Supervisors of said county, made at their regular September session, 1879, and it also withdraws.  The demand made for the payment of the tax levied upon the taxable property of said Carlton township as ordered by the Board of Supervisors at the regular September session 1879, and hereby stipulate and agree that said tax shall not be collected, it having been elected to construct the railroad without such township aid.


In witness whereof said company has caused these presents to be subscribed by its President, and its seal to be hereto affixed, this seventh day of August, A. D. 1880.


[Signed] Toledo and Northwestern

Railway, by Marvin Hughitt,



Attest, J. B. Redfield, Secretary.




This office was established in the spring of 1877, and Enos Thomas appointed postmaster.  It was kept at his store on section 26.  Mail was received twice each week from Toledo, Mr. Thomas having the contract.  This office was discontinued in the spring of 1880.




This place is located on sections 11 and 14.  The land was purchased from George Rider, H. E. Babcock and J. Gotwitzer by W. F. Johnston and Leander Clark, of Toledo, and was surveyed and platted by W. H. Holstead, County Surveyor, in the months of January and February, 1880.  The first lot sold here was purchased by L. H. Babcock during the first week in February, 1880.  The first business building was erected by Hess Brothers from Badger Hill, Spring Creek township.  It was a frame structure 20 x 40 feet, two stories, the upper story being used for a residence.  These parties put in a general stock of merchandise and commenced trade in March, which they continued some time, when they leased the building and removed their stock to Gladbrook.


N. J. Brockmann succeeded the Hess Bros., dealers in general merchandise, and still occupies the building.  He was born in Germany in 1853.  He was educated in the common schools.  Mr. Brockmann's father was a merchant, dealing largely in grain and stock.  In 1870, N. J. came to the United States, coming directly to Tama county, and settling on a farm in Spring Creek township.  In 1874, he entered the employ of Atchison & Son at Traer.  After remaining with them some time he engaged as clerk with Potterfield Bros.  He remained in the employ of this firm until 1880, when he went to Gladbrook and opened a general store, continuing that business for one year until his removal to Garwin, where he now has a general merchandise store.  Mr. Brockmann is a good business man and is alive to the best interests of his town.  He is a member of the Masonic order, of the United Workmen, and also of the V. A. S. Fraternity.  He was married January 16, 1883, to Miss Bertha E. Gebaner, a native of Clinton county, Iowa, born in 1858.


The first to commence in mercantile business in Carlton township was Enos Thomas, born in Pennsylvania, in 1846.  He is a son of John and Sarah (Harmon) Thomas.  The father was born in Pennsylvania, in 1817, the mother in Delaware, 1822, and are now living in Chester county, Pennsylvania.  Enos, after receiving his education in the common schools, set out for the west, coming to Tama county in the spring of 1869, and remaining until in the fall, when he returned to his home in Pennsylvania.  He prolonged his stay there until the following spring, then returned to Tama county and engaged in farming in Carlton township until 1877, when he opened up a mercantile business, and on the completion of the railroad to Garwin, erected a building and removed to that place, where he is now engaged in business with James M. Mason.  Mr. Thomas was married, in 1874, to Miss Virginia A. Guthrie, a native of Iowa, born in Iowa City in 1853.  Three children have been born to them, one only of whom is now living - Mary A.  Mr. and Mrs. Thomas are members of the Society of Friends.


The present dealers in general merchandise are N. J. Brockmann, H. J. Felter and Thomas & Mason.




Newton Mudgett erected a small building on the ground where the office of the elevator now stands, and put in a stock of hardware.  He received his first bill of goods February 20, 1880.  He continued business at this place until fall, when he erected the building which he now occupies.  He deals in all kinds of hardware, pumps, agricultural implements &c., and carries a stock of about $4,000.  The hardware line is now represented by Newton Mudgett and Rider Brothers.


Newton Mudgett is an old settler of Carlton township.  He was born in Lenawee county, Michigan, in 1839.  In 1840, the family emigrated to Kendall county, Illinois, and remained there until 1858, when they came to Tama county, locating on a farm in Carlton township, where the family still reside.  Mr. Mudgett was married on the 13th day of October, 1863, to Miss Estella Fitzgerald, a native of Wyoming county, Pennsylvania.  Mr. Mudgett followed farming until the spring of 1880, when he removed to Garwin and engaged in the hardware and farm implement business, which business he still conducts.  Mr. Mudgett was formerly a Democrat, but at present he affiliates with the Greenback party.  Mr. and Mrs. Mudgett are members of the Christian Church.  Their children are, Gladys R., Truman J., Mabel M. and Harry N.




George L. Springer, from Toledo, purchase the building he now occupies and commenced business May 1, 1880, and has generally a stock of about $1,000.




The first representative of this branch of trade was C. A. Adams.  He came from Toledo and commenced business January 6, 1880.


Sylvester A. Aldrich opened a shop at about the same time and he is still at work.  He is a native of Morrow county, Ohio; was born October, 27, 1852.  When two years old his parents emigrated to Tama county, settling in Toledo, where the father engaged at shoemaking and was the first to work at that trade in Toledo, and also in Tama City.  His father was a native of Ohio, his mother of Pennsylvania, and at present are residents of Perry, Dallas county, Iowa.  Sylvester was married, August 31, 1880, to Mary E. Youngman, a native of Tama county, born May 7, 1857.  They have one child - Maud May, born in Garwin, September 24, 1881.  Soon after his marriage, Mr. Aldrich moved to the new town of Garwin, and was one of the first to engage in the shoemaking business.  He still is a resident of Garwin where he follows his trade.




There were two lumber years started here about the same time - John Curthburtson receiving the first car load of lumber.  He came from Union Grove, where he had been in this business about five months, and removed to this point upon the completion of the railroad to Garwin in January, 1880.  D. D. Terry & Co., from Tama City, opened a yard in January, 1880, and remained here till the spring of 1881, when they sold out to John Curthburtson, who remained until December 25, 1882, when he sold his business to Butler & Black, who yet continue in this trade.  Creenk & Thomas also handle this line.




The first to work at this line of business here was D. P. Williams from Greene county.  He commenced during the fall of 1881, and continues at the present time.




A. M. Brinkerhoff came from Black Hawk county in the spring of 1880, built a shop in town and remains in the trade.




Butler & Black, from Montour, erected a commodious elevator, having a capacity of eight thousand bushels, in June, 1882, and commenced dealing in grain, coal, seeds and live-stock.  Charles Myers is manager of the business at the present time.


Charles Myers was born in Sandusky county, Ohio, in 1858, and there grew to manhood fitting himself for teaching school.  In 1879, he came to Tama county, stopping in Carlton township, and remaining until 1880, when he traveled through Minnesota, returning to Tama county the same fall.  March 30, 1882, he was married to Miss Ida Beery, who was born in Ohio, and when nine months old came with her parents to Carlton township.




The first house of this description was kept by Enos Thomas in a two story frame building, which he erected during the spring of 1880.  He commenced to feed the hungry in February, and continued until the fall of 1881, when he converted the lower part into a store room.  It is now occupied by Mr. Thomas and Mr. Mason.




The first hotel was built by Thomas Powers, from Crystal township, during the summer and fall of 1881, to which he gave the name of "Garwin House."  It is built on the best approved plan, and cost, with lots and barn, $3,200.  It was opened to the public the 25th of November.  Mr. Powers still continues the business.


Thomas Powers was born in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, March 6, 1832.  He was educated in the common schools, and when of sufficient age, was apprenticed to learn sickle making.  After a time he engaged as a nail cutter in a nail factory, which occupation he followed for twenty years.  On the outbreak of the rebellion, he took arms in defense of the Union, enlisting August 1, 1861, in the Sixty-third Pennsylvania regiment, serving until July, 1862.  He re-enlisted in September, 1864, in Company C, 205th Pennsylvania heavy artillery, and served until the close of the war.  He was wounded at the battle of Nelson's Farm, June 29, 1862, from the effects of which he never fully recovered.  He now draws a pension from the Government.  He was married in Pennsylvania, April 9, 1857, to Miss Eliza E. Guthrie, a native of Pennsylvania, born May 10, 1838.  In 1870, Mr. Powers came to Tama county with his family, and purchased a farm in Crystal township where he settled and followed farming until the summer of 1881, when he sold his land and built what is now known as the Garwin House, at Garwin.  He then began in the hotel business, in which he is still engaged.  Mr. and Mrs. Powers are the parents of seven children - Wilford, Anna, Elmer, Ella, Eva, Benjamin and William.  He and his wife are members of the United Brethren Church.  In politics Mr. Powers is a Republican, and has several times been honored by the suffrages of the people.


Garwin's physician is Dr. J. H. Graham, who is noticed at length in the medical chapter.


A. B. Jones is the Railroad agent.


The Fruum brothers are the blacksmiths.


There are two saloons, kept by P. Reimer and G. Shultz.




The independent school district of Garwin was set off from school districts nubers one and seven, in the spring of 1882, and includes the south half of sections 11 and 12 and the north half of sections 13 and 14.  During the winter and summer of 1882 a two-story frame building, 24 x 36 feet, erected at a cost of $1,500 and is located was on lot number 14 block 10.  There are two departments.  The first school is now being taught by J. S. West, and there is an attendance of about sixty.




The De Novo postoffice was established December, 1879, with Lewis H. Babcock as postmaster, and the office kept at his store located on the northeast quarter of section 14.  The first mail was received January 16, 1880 and twice each week afterward by stage from Toledo.  About this time the village of Garwin was platted and on the 15th day of January, 1880, the name of the office was changed to correspond with that of the town.


For some reason the De Novo postoffice does not appear in the postal guide but the records show it was first established under that name.  The first daily mail was received February 1, 1880.  It was made a money order office August 15, 1880, and the first order was drawn on the 15th of that month by Frank Frahn in favor of A. C. Keyes, of Cedar Rapids.  The first order paid was to F. Peitz, from Henry Peitz, of Clinton.  Mr. Babcock is still in charge as postmaster.




The Garwin Collegian of the V. A. S. Fraternity was organized August 5, 1882, by Deputy Chief Rector, O. H. Henderson, with the following charter members:


L. H. Babcock, Newton Mudgett, A. M. Brinkerhoff, G. W. Berry, Dr. J. H. Graham, E. J. Lewis, J. M. Mason, H. L. Felter, A. B. Jones, John Curthburtson, D. D. Boyington and N. J. Brockmann.  The first and present officers are:  E. J. Lewis, Scribe; H. L. Felter, Rector; A. M. Brinkerhoff, Chaplain; L. H. Babcock, Treasurer; A. B. Jones, Usher; D. D. Boyington, Guard; Dr. J. H. Graham, Medical Examiner.  Meetings are held on the first Tuesday in each month at the Depot building.  The order is in a flourishing condition.

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