History of Taylor County, Iowa: from the earliest historic times to 1910 by Frank E. Crosson. Chicago, The S.J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1910
(biographicals transcribed by Linda Kestner: email@example.com)
C. E. LONGFELLOW
C. E. Longfellow, proprietor of the Science Ridge farm located on section 11, Jackson township, is a man of undaunted business enterprise, who closely studies his opportunities and utilizes them to the best advantage. In addition to raising the cereals best adapted to soil and climate he is well known as a stock-raiser and feeder and also breeds and deals in Chester White hogs. His life has been one of well-directed activity and, although he is a young man who has not yet completed his third decade, he is recognized as one of the leading representatives of agricultural life in this community.
A native son of Taylor county, Mr. Longfellow was born in Gay township, September 19, 1880. His father, J. P. Longfellow, also a native of this state, was born in Muscatine county, where he was reared and married, the lady of his choice being Miss Mary Elder. She, too, was a native of Muscatine county, and following their marriage they engaged in farming there for several years. About 1880 they removed to Taylor county, where Mr. Longfellow purchased land and carried on farming, his place being located in Gay township, where he reared his family. He now resides in Oklahoma and is engaged in business there as a contractor and builder.
C. E. Longfellow was reared to manhood in Gay and Jefferson townships and pursued his education in the schools of Platteville. He remained with his father until he had attained his majority and, starting in life for himself, he chose as a companion and helpmate for the journey Miss Mary Streebin, whom he wedded (page 263) on the 31st of January, 1900, who was born and reared in Jackson township, this county, and is a daughter of Chris Streebin, one of the early settlers and prominent farmers of this section of the state. After their marriage they located on the farm where they now reside. Mr. Longfellow bought out the Streebin heirs and became the owner of one hundred and sixty acres, while in 1909 he purchased one hundred and twenty acres adjoining, making a farm of two hundred and eighty acres of the valuable, rich and productive land of southwestern Iowa. His home is a large dwelling which he erected and which is built in modern style of architecture. In the rear stands a good barn and the dwelling is surrounded by a neat and well-kept lawn enclosed within a garden fence. There is also a good orchard on the place and altogether the farm is a well-improved and valuable property. In the pastures and feed lots are seen high grades of Shorthorn cattle, Chester White hogs and good horses and in the autumn the granaries and cribs are filled with grain which has been harvested and the capacity of the hay loft is also taxed to the utmost. An air of neatness and thrift pervades the place, indicating the practical and progressive labors of the owner.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Longfellow have been born two sons, Roy C. and Harry N. The parents attend the Baptist church and Mr. Longfellow is one of the school officers, doing all that he can to promote the cause of education. His political allegiance is given to the republican party. He has been a resident of this county throughout his entire life and is well known in this section of the state, where he has so lived and labored as to win the high regard and unqualified confidence of all who know him. His record has been one of diligence and perseverance and that his labors have been well directed is indicated in the fact that he is now the owner of the Science Ridge farm.
H. H. LONGWELL
H. H. Longwell has made his home in Blockton since 1895 and derives a good living from his invested interests. He was formerly identified with farming in Union county and the rest which he is now enjoying is well merited, for in early years he led a very busy and active life. Mr. Longwell was born in Crawford county, Ohio, February 10, 1837, a son of George Longwell, who was born in Connecticut, a son of Edwin Longwell. The latter removed to Licking county in an early day, when much of the land was still in possession of the Indians and when his nearest neighbors were the red men. It was also at a time when much wild game was to be found in that district. It was in Licking county that George Longwell was reared and was there married to Miss Margaret Jury, who was born in the Buckeye State, of Welsh parentage. Mr. Longwell there engaged in farming and reared a family of three children. In 1853 he opened up a farm (page 540) in Iowa county, Iowa, which he developed and improved but later disposed of that property and removed to Keokuk county, this state, where he spent his remaining years and passed away. His wife survived him and departed this life in Washington county, Iowa.
H. H. Longwell was reared in the county of his nativity to the age of fifteen years, during which time he acquired his education in the district schools. At the above stated age he removed with his parents to Iowa county, Iowa, and enrolled his name as a student in the Iowa City College, where he qualified for the teacher's profession, which he followed for one year prior to the outbreak of the Civil war. At that time, in 1861, he enlisted for service, joining the Second Iowa Cavalry in August of that year. Going south with his command he saw active service in Missouri, Mississippi and Tennessee under Pope, participated in the battle of Corinth and later participated in the battle at Boonville, Missouri, under General Sheridan. He also took part in many skirmishes and after the battle of Corinth was on provost duty for a time under General Rosecrans. At Corinth, in 1863, he veteranized and went home on a furlough. Later he rejoined his regiment near Memphis, Tennessee, and remained at the front until the close of hostilities. He was mustered out and received an honorable discharge at Selma, Alabama, in September, 1865.
Returning to the home farm, Mr. Longwell then remained with his father until the latter's death, after which he took charge of the home place. It was about that time, on the 15th of November, 1866, that he was married to Miss Adda Hallett, who was born in Ohio and removed with her parents when a little maiden of six years to Iowa county. Following their marriage Mr. Longwell continued farming operations in Iowa county but later took up his abode in Keokuk county and eventually made a location in Union county, where he purchased a farm and continued to operate the same throughout a long period. In 1895, however, he abandoned farming pursuits and purchasing a block of land in Blockton, took up his abode in this city, where he has made his home to the present time. He built to and remodeled the house and now has a modern and commodious structure, supplied with all conveniences and accessories for the inmates of the household. He also invested in land near Woodward, Oklahoma, and owns property near Alva, both of which are finely improved farms, from which he derives a substantial income.
Mr. and Mrs. Longwell have reared a family of four children, namely: Laura May, who is a stenographer, occupying a responsible position in Des Moines; Fred M., who is an osteopathic physician in Oregon; R. H., who was an electrical engineer in Des Moines and is now in the employ of Crane Manufacturing Company; and Zua, the wife of Everett Williams, a farmer of Woodward, Oklahoma. They have one child living, Eston, and have lost one.
Mr. Longwell gives his political support to the republican party and has been called by his fellow townsmen to serve in public positions, having filled the offices of township clerk and assessor, while living in Union county. He has also served as Mayor of Blockton. Both he and his wife are members of the Methodist church, and Mrs. Longwell is a teacher in the Sunday school. Mr. Longwell is a Master Mason, belong to the blue lodge at Blockton and both he and his wife are members of the Eastern Star Chapter. Mr. Longwell is a member (page 541) of the G. A. R. post at Blockton, in which he is serving as commander. Mr. Longwell has led an upright, honest life. His entire political service has been in the interest of the people. His loyalty to his country, when, at the age of twenty-four years he abandoned the profession of teaching and went to the front during the Civil war, is a chapter in his history, and this loyalty has been manifest throughout his entire career -- in public life, in social and fraternal relations, and in citizenship. He has now passed the seventy-second milestone on life's journey and he and his estimable wife are enjoying in retirement the accumulations of profitable, successful and honorable careers.
RAY V. LUCAS
Ray V. Lucas, editor and proprietor of the Bedford Free Press, of Bedford, Iowa, was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, January 16, 1873. He was one of a family of seven children whose parents were Albert G. and Anna M. (Byers) Lucas, natives of Pennsylvania. His paternal grandfather was Benjamin Franklin Lucas, also a native of the Keystone state and of Scotch-Irish descent. For many years he engaged in the practice of law in Pittsburgh and in 1875 removed westward to Missouri, serving as circuit judge at Albany, that state. His course upon the bench and in his practice at the bar was such as won him much more than local reputation as an able and competent attorney. He died in Des Moines, Iowa, at the age of seventy-one years, while his wife, who in her maidenhood was Elizabeth Fox, died when past middle life. Their family numbered three children. The maternal grandfather of Mr. Lucas was born in Pennsylvania and was of Scotch-Irish lineage. He carried on business as a dealer in horses and when a young man, was shot by the Confederates. His widow died shortly after the close of the war. Their family numbered four sons and one daughter.
(Page 329) Albert G. Lucas, father of Ray V. Lucas, was a printer in his young manhood at Kittanning, Pennsylvania. When the Civil war was inaugurated, he was a member of the Pittsburgh Zouaves and with that command he enlisted for active duty at the front, becoming a member of the Twenty-third Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry. Subsequently he reenlisted in the One Hundred and Eleventh Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, of which he was adjutant. He served throughout the entire period of hostilities, participated in a number of important battles and several times was slightly wounded, although he sustained no very serious injuries. He took part in the siege of Vicksburg, in the military movements around Atlanta and in the march to the sea under General Sherman, and after the war he practiced law in Pittsburgh for a number of years in partnership with his father. He also acted as United States district attorney and made an enviable record by reason of his ability in the legal profession during his residence in the east. In 1875, he removed with his family to Grant City, Missouri, where he practiced law for a time, after which he turned his attention to journalism, purchasing and editing the Grant City Star. He was connected with that paper for several years and then removed to Hopkins, Missouri, where he published the Hopkins Journal in partnership with James Pierce, of Des Moines. In 1878, they established the Taylor County (Iowa) Republican and removed to Bedford. They also purchased a number of other papers and at length traded their syndicate interests for the Iowa Homestead at Des Moines, Mr. Lucas removing to that city in 1891. He remained as editor of the Homestead for ten years or until 1901, when he sold out and went to Buffalo, Wyoming, where he purchased the Buffalo Bulletin, which he is still conducting. He is well remembered in journalistic circles of this state and among old friends in the east as a lawyer of prominence and ability. His political allegiance is unfalteringly given to the republican party and both he and his wife are members of the Methodist church. Of their family of two sons and five daughters only four are now living, namely: Bessie, the wife of J. D Gallup, of Buffalo, Wyoming; Ray V., of this review; Frank E., who is serving as postmaster of Buffalo, Wyoming; Nellie, likewise a resident of Buffalo; Lulu, the deceased wife of Dr. Park Holland; and two who died in infancy.
Ray V. Lucas was only five years of age when brought to Bedford by his parents, so that the following year he became a pupil in the public schools and passed through consecutive grades until he had become a high school student. He entered upon his business career when seventeen years of age through appointment to the position of railway postal clerk. This he resigned in 1900 and bought a newspaper at Earlville, Iowa, conducting it until January, 1906. He then returned to Bedford and purchased the Bedford Free Press, which is a republican newspaper with very progressive proclivities. The plant is one of the finest owned by any country newspaper in the state. Before entering the mail service Mr. Lucas had learned the printer's trade in the office of his father and he and his brother, Frank E., had conducted a job office in Des Moines, so that he brought practical experience to the business when he entered the field of journalism at Earlville. He has made the Free Press a credit to the city and county and has gained for himself an enviable reputation among the younger representatives of newspaper interests in Iowa. On the 18th of May, 1909 (page 330) Mr. Lucas was appointed assistant postmaster under his father-in-law, James P. Flick.
On the 4th of June, 1895, Mr. Lucas was married to Miss Maude Flick, a daughter of James P. and Amanda (King) Flick. There are three children of that union: James A., Cora L. and Lucile. Mrs. Lucas is a member of the Methodist church and Mr. Lucas belongs to Taylor Lodge, No. 156, A. F. & A. M., the Triangle Chapter, R. A. M. He is likewise connected with the Knights of Pythias and his record is at all times in harmony with the demands which those orders make upon their members for good citizenship and for uprightness in all the walks of life. He has been aptly termed a man of purpose and this is evidenced not only in his efforts to promote his own success in business lines but also in his indefatigable labor for the welfare of the community in lines of general progress and improvement.
Edward Luton owns a nicely improved farm of forty acres, situated on section 9, Grove township, which has been his home for about three decades. He was born in Pasquotank county, North Carolina, October 23, 1837, and was there reared to years of maturity, after which he went to Cherry Valley, New York. It was in the Empire State that he enlisted in 1861 as a member of Battery M, Third New York Light Artillery. He was in the Army of the Potomac, first under General Butler and later under General Burnsides, participating in the second battle of the Wilderness, Missouri Bluff and Fort Wagoner, while later he was with his command at Washington, North Carolina. He was also in the siege of Petersburg and the engagements at Richmond and Cold Harbor. Becoming ill with a fever he spent a month in a hospital at Fort Hatteras. He rejoined his regiment at Newberne, North Carolina, and served till the close of hostilities. He was present when General Lee surrendered and saw him deliver his sword to General Grant, who declined to accept it. Mr. Luton was honorably discharged at Syracuse, New York, in July, 1865.
After his military career Mr. Luton spent two or three years working in a sawmill on the Gulf of Mexico. He journeyed from the gulf up the river to Cairo, Illinois, and later went to Missouri, where he worked on railroad construction. After a time spent in that way he farmed for three years in Clay county, Missouri, and subsequently went to Lee county, Illinois, working at farm labor near Dixon. He spent five years in the employ of one man and while residing in that district established a home of his own by his marriage in 1870 to Miss Elsie Hill, who was born in Lee county and engaged in teaching prior to her marriage.
Following his marriage Mr. Luton continued to farm in Lee county for two years and then journeyed westward, locating on a raw tract of eighty acres in Marshall township, Taylor county. He improved the place and cultivated the (page 582) land for six years. He then disposed of that farm and purchased his present home farm of forty acres, situated on section 9, Grove township. On this he has erected a nice country residence, a barn and other outbuildings, and although the place had not a tree or shrub upon it when Mr. Luton took possession it now has a good bearing orchard, while shade trees not only add to the attractive appearance of the place but afford comfort as well. Mr. Luton is not engaged in farming to any great extent but makes a business of feeding stock and has met with merited success in this venture.
The marriage of Mr. and Mrs. Luton has been blessed with a son and daughter. Albert, who is married and has one daughter, has made his home in Canada for the past four years. Effie is the wife of Fred Wheeler; a barber in Clearfield.
Mr. Luton cast his first presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln and has supported each republican nominee since that time. He belongs to the G. A. R. post at Lenox, while his wife is a member of the Presbyterian church and his daughter of the Christian church. He started out in life in a humble way but is now numbered among the citizens of worth in Taylor county. He possesses a patriotic spirit and at all times is actuated by a fidelity to his country and her welfare.
GEORGE R. MCALPIN
George R. McAlpin, one of the progressive and enterprising farmers and stock-raisers of Washington township, where he owns and operates a fine farm of one hundred and sixty acres, was born in Taylor county on the 4th of March, 1871. He comes from a family which has been represented in America since early colonial days, while his father, Robert McAlpin, was one of the pioneer settlers of this county, coming to this state from Indiana. He was prominent among agricultural circles in Taylor county and was called to his final rest in 1873. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Susan Harris, still survives and resides upon the old home farm upon which our subject was born. She has again married (page 671), her second husband being O. B. Werts. Her father, William Harris, was also one of the pioneers of this county.
George R. McAlpin spent the period of his boyhood and youth upon the home farm and attended the Hawleyville school until twenty years of age. In the meantime, when not busy with his text-books, he assisted his stepfather in the work of the farm, and was thus employed until he attained his majority, when he started out in life on his own account, purchasing eighty acres of land in Mason township. Upon this he resided for one year, although the property was in his possession for about nine years. He later purchased forty acres which he afterward sold and then, in 1900, bought the farm upon which he now resides. It consists of one hundred and sixty acres of well improved land, in the midst of which Mr. McAlpin has erected a comfortable and attractive residence, while in the rear are substantial and commodious barns and outbuildings which stand as monuments to his enterprise and industry. Upon the place may be found all of the latest conveniences and accessories for the purpose of facilitating farm labor, and it ranks among the valuable and desirable farming properties of Washington township. He carries on general farming and also devotes much of his time to stock-raising, making a specialty of thoroughbred shorthorn cattle, and both branches of his business-- raising grain and raising stock -- are proving most gratifying sources of income. He has been successful in his enterprise and is classed among the prosperous and representative farmers of Washington township.
Mr. McAlpin was united in marriage in Dallas township on the 23d of March, 1897, to Miss Effie Kelso, a daughter of Benjamin and Mary Ellen Kelso, the former a very prominent farmer of Mason township. Mr. and McAlpin have become the parents of two children, Virgil and Charles. Mr. McAlpin holds membership in the Methodist Episcopal church, while fraternally he is connected with the Odd Fellows, having been a member thereof for seventeen years. In politics he is a republican and is public-spirited in his citizenship, being deeply interested in all matters which have for their object the permanent and substantial upbuilding and growth of the community. Having passed his entire life in Taylor county, Mr. McAlpin has become widely known throughout the locality and his circle of friends is almost coextensive with his circle of acquaintances. His honorable and upright life has won for him the respect and regard of his fellowmen and he is recognized as a prominent and valued citizen of Washington township.