Tama County Iowa Obituaries

Uriah S. Johnston

A "sketch"(obituary) from the Toledo Chronicle (Toledo, Iowa)
July 19, 1887:

"A father in Israel--an aged and respected citizen--has fallen and the people mourn, but they sorrow not as those who have no hope.

Uriah S. Johnston, the subject of this sketch, was born in Connellsville, Fayette County, Penn., October 17th, 1807. Here he spent the days of his youth, and learned the trade of cabinet and joiner work, at which he became an acknowledged proficient. At the age of about twenty-four years, he went to the town of Mt. Pleasant to continue his work. About a year after--June 14th, 1832, he was married to Miss Mary Kiester, of the same town, where they lived together for many years in a happy home.

Here was born to them eleven children--three sons and eight daughters. The three sons and six of the daughters are living, and were present at the funeral occasion to pay their last sad rite to the memory of a good and faithful father. The devoted wife and mother was not present in body to weep with her children. Years ago she went to that land where there are no tears. The sad hour the children stood around the dying couch of their father as they did around the bed of a dying mother years ago was not a sad hour to her but one of joyous expectancy.

On the 21st day of June, 1861, Father Johnston enlisted in the 28th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry to go to the war. During the first year of army life, his vigorous health was so impaired that he received an honorable discharge on the 24th of June in the following year. Alike in the service of his country and service of Christ he did his duty. We are reminded that another member of the G.A.R. Post has fallen, with no one to take his place--no one to fill the ranks. We wonder if his place in the army of the Lord will be vacant? It will be hard to fill.

In the year 1872, and the fifth month, he with his companion came to Toledo, Iowa, where the majority of his children were already located, and where his home has been since.

Father Johnston was converted at an early age and for a time was a member of the M. E. church. Some time after his marriage he made his home with the United Brethren church, of which he remained a faithful and valuable member until his death, when he went to join that innumerable throne of God's elect where sects are not needed or known.

He was the Father of the United Brethren church in Toledo. He had strong convictions but was not arbitrary in carrying them out. He had faith that God would help him in planting the church of his choice in his home town. He and his companion and a faithful few organized themselves into a society, all of whom are still living and members of the society except Father and Mother Johnston. He was elected class-leader of the little band and held the position for a number of years, when he gradually handed it over to those who were younger. After a church....." [end of legible text]. Toledo Chronicle 1887 [continuation of the above in a Toledo Chronicle article in 1887]

After a church building was erected he was made one of its trustees, holding that office until his death.

He is survived by 37 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. Eleven of the 48 grandchildren having crossed the mystic river in advance. He died at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Yeiser, at 3 o'clock A. M. on July 18, 1887, age 79 years, 9 months and 1 day. He was buried from the church, services conducted by Rev. B. M. Long, assisted by Rev. S. C. Bronson. Burial was in Woodlawn Cemetery on July 22, 1887.

Submitted by: Gary Wade (GaryWOTR@aol.com)

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