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)
W. H. PFANDER
W. H. Pfander is a successful farmer of Marshall township, owning two hundred and seventeen acres on section 6, where he makes his home, and he likewise has an adjoining farm of one hundred nine and a half acres. He was born near Clarinda, in Page county, Iowa, April 27, 1866, a son of A. Pfander, who was born in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, of German parentage. The family removed from the Keystone State to Butler county, Ohio, and still later they located in Montgomery county, that state. Subsequently they removed to Preble county, Ohio, and it was on a farm there that A. Pfander was reared to manhood. His father was a wagonmaker by trade and in addition to farming he followed his trade, being assisted in the shop by his son. The latter was married in Darke county, Ohio, to Miss Elizabeth A. Colville, who was born in the Buckeye State. He then took his bride to Page county and homesteaded one hundred and sixty acres of land near Clarinda, when that present enterprising city contained but one house. He improved his farm with a good country residence, built two barns and other outbuildings and made it a valuable property. They reared their family on the farm on which they spent many years. Mr. Pfander is now living retired in Clarinda, at the age of seventy-six years but his wife is deceased, her death occurring October 4, 1905.
W. H. Pfander was reared on the home farm in Page county and acquired his education in the schools near by. He was married August 25, 1887, in Page county to Miss Ollie E. Cree, who was born in Henry county, Illinois, but was reared and educated in Page county, to which place her parents removed during her childhood. She is a sister of D. R. Cree, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this volume.
Following his marriage W. H. Pfander resided on the home farm, operating a portion of the father's property, and he also farmed eighty acres near by, which he owned. After a year, he removed to his father-in-law's farm, which he operated for two years, and then bought twenty acres adjoining his eighty-acre tract, the former being improved with good buildings. Taking up his residence thereon he gave his attention to its cultivation and also operated eighty acres which he rented. In 1903 he sold his land in Page county and bought his present farm of two hundred and seventeen acres on section 6, Marshall township, Taylor county, and he likewise owns another tract of one hundred nine and a half acres in this county. He has added to and remodeled the house, (page 606) which is surrounded by a well kept lawn and a neat iron fence, and an amply supply of water is furnished for household purposes by a good system of waterworks, and the water is also piped to various parts of the farm for the stock. A good orchard is also found on the place and Mr. Pfander has set out a nice grove of ash and maple trees. He carries on general farming and raises stock on an extensive scale, keeping hogs and sheep. He also has an imported Percheron stallion for breeding purposes. In all his business affairs he is methodical and systematic and his labors are bringing him good results. His wife owns a two-thirds interest in one hundred and twenty acres in Marshall township.
Unto Mr. and Mrs. Pfander have been born three sons and five daughters, namely: Rilla A., who is a young lady at home; Ira D., who assists his father on the farm; Grace E.; Hattie V.; Cloyd W.; Eula Myrtle; Zenith L.; and Burl J.
Politically Mr. Pfander is identified with the republican party and is serving as a member of the school board. While still a resident of Page county he served as a school director also. He and his wife belong to the United Brethren church in Page county. Mr. Pfander is a hard-working man, who manages his business affairs in an able manner and the success which he is now enjoying is well merited.
Elvon Pierce is a farmer and stock raiser of Jackson township, busily occupied with the duties devolving upon him in connection with the cultivation of a farm of one hundred and twenty-five acres which he owns on section 6. He also cultivates one hundred and twenty acres adjoining this place and his life is one of unremitting diligence and thrift. His farm is situated about four miles from Bedford and its equipment is in accord with the ideas that concern progressive and modern agricultural life.
Mr. Pierce has resided in Taylor county since 1880, coming here when a lad of eleven years. He was born in Lee county, Illinois, April 22, 1870, a son of Samuel and Sarah (Cole) Pierce, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania. They removed westward to Illinois, where they lived for some time and were married in Lee county, Illinois, where Mr. Pierce turned his attention to farming, cultivating a good tract of land there. Upon that place all of his children were born and he made the farm his home until 1881, when he removed to Taylor county, Iowa. Here he continued to engage in general agricultural pursuits for a number of years or until his life's labors were ended in death. His widow still survives and now resides with her son Elvon. In their family were (page 442) eight children, five daughters and three sons, six of whom survive, the brother of our subject being E. R. Pierce, now a resident of Idaho Falls, Idaho. The sisters are: Ella, now the wife of Aid Bradshaw, of Lee county, Illinois; Kate, the wife of H. V. Guisinger, of Storm Lake, Iowa; Chloe, the wife of Charles Nelson of Bedford, Iowa; and Ila, who resides with her mother and brother upon the farm. One daughter, Eva, became the wife of Homer Chamberlin and is now deceased, and Roy died at the age of fourteen years.
Elvon Pierce, coming to Iowa with his parents when a lad of ten years, was reared to manhood in Taylor county and pursued his education in the public schools. He was early trained to the work of the fields and continued to assist his father until the latter's death. He has since remained upon the home farm, renting the property for a time and eventually purchasing the place. He has built a good barn and outbuildings, has fenced the fields, has set out some fruit and altogether has made a neat farm, rich it is possibilities and its opportunities. In connection with the cultivation of the cereals best adapted to climatic conditions here, he likewise raises and feeds high-grade stock and, believing himself capable of carrying on farming on a more extensive scale than is demanded upon his home pace, he has operated the adjoining one hundred and twenty acres for twelve years and is therefore cultivating a valuable property of two hundred and forty acres.
In his political views Mr. Pierce is a democrat, but has never sought or desired office for he feels that his business affairs demand all of his attention. He belongs to the Presbyterian church and holds membership in Grove Camp, No. 5042, M. W. A. His social qualities have won him kindly regard and warm friendship, while his business reliability and integrity have gained him the good will and trust of all who know him.
J. H. POOR
Persistent, earnest labor has constituted the foundation upon which J. H. Poor has built his success, making him one of the substantial farmers of Gay township. He now resides on section 25, and is busily employed with the care of a farm of one hundred and twenty acres. He has resided there for thirty-five years, having in 1874, come to Taylor county from Ringgold county, Iowa, where he located in 1870. He has lived in the middle west although the place of his birth was east of the Mississippi. He first opened his eyes to the light of day on the 27th of March, 1843, in Jackson county, Indiana. His father, Samuel Poor, was also a native of that state and having arrived at years of maturity was married there to Julia Ann Winegar, a native of Tennessee. Mr. Poor followed farming in the Hoosier state and there reared his family. At the time of the Civil war he espoused the cause of the Union and served at the front until honorably discharged on account of disability. He passed away in 1895, and is still survived by his widow who resides with a daughter, Mrs. Sutton, in Missouri.
The boyhood days of J. H. Poor were quietly passed upon the home farm in Jackson county, Indiana, Through the period of his boyhood and youth he worked in the fields through the summer months and in the winter seasons acquired his education. He was married in 1862 when twenty years of age to Miss Harriet McCain, who was a native of Ohio, but was reared in Indiana. After their marriage the young couple began their domestic life upon a tract of rented land which Mr. Poor cultivated until 1864. In February of that year, constrained by a spirit of patriotism, he offered his services to the government, enlisting as a member of Company H, One Hundred and Twentieth Indiana Volunteer Infantry. With that command he went south, the regiment joining the Army of the Cumberland. He was first under fire at Buzzard's Roost, a hotly contested battle in which Mr. Poor had the first finger of his right hand shot away, thus becoming permanently disabled. He was in the hospital for a time but later joined his regiment and subsequently participated in the battles of Resaca, Kenesaw Mountain and the Atlanta campaign. He was also present at the bottle of Jonesboro and after the capture of Atlanta was with his regiment when it was sent back to Nashville, participating in the last engagement there. Later he was sent to Washington, D. C., and subsequently to Morehead City. He afterward joined General Sherman at Raleigh, where he was held on guard duty until (page 359) 1866, when he was mustered out and sent home, receiving his honorable discharge at Indianapolis on the 9th of January of that year.
When the war was over and the country no longer needed his military aid Mr. Poor returned home and later purchased a tract of land in Jackson county Indiana, where he carried on general farming until 1870. In that year he came to Iowa, settling first in Ringgold county, where he purchased forty acres of land which he broke and fenced. He there carried on farming for four years when he sold the property and bought forty acres of his present farm. Only a small portion of this had been broken while there was upon the place a small box house which he and his family occupied for four or five years or until he was able to erect a more commodious and modern residence. Desirous of becoming the owner of a more extensive farm he added to his original tract from time to time as his financial resources increased and broke the sod and tilled the soil until his place was converted into rich and productive fields. He also built a substantial dwelling and likewise a good barn and hog shed. He had also set out fruit trees, planted a grove and made the place what it is today, a well improved property. He raises high grade stock, including hogs, cattle and horses and his fields annually bring forth rich harvests.
Mr. and Mrs. Poor have become the parents of nine children: J. C., a young man at home, who assists in carrying on the farm; Charles, a resident farmer of Gay township; Benjamin B., of Blockton, who was a soldier of the Philippine war and had his left thumb shot away; John, who is doing for himself; James and Jesse, at home; Charlotta, the wife of Delta Ketch, of Blockton; Jennie, the wife of William Hensley, a farmer of Gay township; and Emma, who died in September, 1908, at the age of twenty-four years.
In his political views Mr. Poor has been a republican since casting his first presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln in 1864. With one exception he has supported every presidential nominee of the party since that time. He belongs to the United Brethren church and to the Grand Army Post and is highly esteemed in both organizations. For nearly forty years he has lived in this part of the country and since 1874 has been actively concerned in the development and progress of Taylor county, especially along the lines of agricultural development.
He has worked earnestly and persistently to attain the success which is now his and which makes him one of the representative agriculturists of the community.
J. E. POWELL
J. E. Powell, busily occupied with the duties of his farm of one hundred and sixty acres situated on section 21, Grant township, is known not only as a progressive farmer and stock-raiser but also as one of the active and influential citizens of his district, where he is now serving as assessor. He was born in Rock Island county, Illinois, December 13, 1855, and was reared in that and Mercer counties, spending his youth largely on farms. He remained with his grandparents until twenty-four years of age and during that period was carefully trained in the work of the fields so that broad experience constituted the foundation for his success when he started out in life on his own account. In 1880, he came to Iowa, settling in Taylor county and for one year engaged in farming in Mason township. He then removed to Conway, where he carried on farming for three years. In 1884 he went to southeastern Nebraska and purchased a farm in the vicinity of Lincoln. Some of this land was broken, and with characteristic energy he began the further cultivation and improvement of the place. His tract originally comprised one hundred and twenty acres, to which he afterward added from time to time, owning one hundred and eighty acres when he decided to leave Nebraska and returned to Iowa. This was in the year 1893. He then sold his property in that state and in Taylor county purchased the farm upon which he now resides, taking up his abode on this place in the spring of 1894. During the past fifteen years he has devoted his energies continuously to its cultivation and improvement and has erected thereon a neat and attractive residence and a large barn. He has also set out an orchard, has a nice grove and a neat lawn. After farming here for three seasons, however, he removed to Conway, where he established a hardware business, while later he represented the commercial interests of the town as a general merchant. He carried on business there as as proprietor or a clerk for about nine years but is now giving his attention to general agricultural pursuits, and in connection with the tilling of the soil he raises, feeds and ships stock. He is an excellent judge of domestic animals and handles stock of good grades for which he finds a ready market.
In September, 1883, in Bedford, Mr. Powell was united in marriage to Miss Mary Chiles, a native of Texas, who spent the greater part of her girlhood in Illinois and Iowa. There are two children, Claud F., a young man who holds a position in the Cooper Bank at Conway; and George Guy, who aids in the operation of the home farm. They also had one daughter, Delphia, who died when four months old.
In his political views Mr. Powell is a democrat and has supported the party since casting his first presidential ballot for Grover Cleveland. In Conway, he served as assessor for six years and is now serving for the second term as assessor of Grant township, having been the incumbent in the office already for (page 692) four years. He discharges his duties in a prompt, systematic and capable manner so that his official record is thoroughly commendable. His wife is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, while Mr. Powell belongs to the Masonic fraternity, in which he has taken the degrees of the lodge, chapter and commandery. His name is likewise on the membership rolls of Conway Lodge, I. O. O. F., in which he has filled all of the chairs and is a past grand. He joined the order in Illinois, filled all of the offices in the lodge to which he belonged in that state, was honored with equal official preferment when in Nebraska and again in Conway, and in all three states has been a representative from the local lodge to the grand lodge. He is well known in Bedford, Lenox, Clearfield and other points in Taylor county, and his record as a business man and an official indicates his tried integrity and worth and has constituted the basis of the confidence and esteem entertained for him throughout the community.
ALLIE E. PULLEN
Allie E. Pullen, a farmer and stockman of New Market, Taylor county, Iowa, owns eighty acres of land in Dallas township. He was born July 7, 1875, in Illinois, and is a son of Albert and Marjory (White) Pullen. His father, who was born in Indiana in 1850, was one of two sons and two daughters, the children of John Pullen and his wife, Joseph, Elmira, and Luella being his brother and sisters. Marjory White was the daughter of David and Charlotte (Williams) White, and was born in Pennsylvania in 1852. She was the eldest of nine children, the other members of the family being David, Joseph, James, Sarah, Elizabeth, Rebecca, Mary Ann and Minerva. Albert Pullen came to Page county, Iowa, in 1877, and subsequently moved to Taylor county, which has been his home ever since. He is a farmer and has achieved success in his life work. To Mr. and Mrs. Albert Pullen were born twelve children: Allie, John, Charlie, James, Jesse, Willie, Sylvester, Silas, Taphan, Dovie, Cora and Marjory.
Allie E. Pullen, the second in order of birth, was but two years of age when his parents came to the state of Iowa. He received such education as the schools of his locality could give during the few months they were in session, and he assisted with the work on his father's farm from the days of his boyhood. He has lived for the last seven years upon his present farm, and points with pride to the various buildings on the place, all modern structures which he built himself. The land, which is rich and productive, supports well the general line of farming Mr. Pullen carries on, and also affords pasturage for the stock that of late years has commanded more and more of his attention and time.
(Page 519) On the 2d of March, 1892, Mr. Pullen was united in marriage to Miss Nellie Combs, who was born in this county, July 30, 1876, and is a daughter of Burr and Lucretia Ann (Painter) Combs. The father, who is a son of Jacob Combs, was born in Virginia in 1839. In his family were eight children: Nellie, Charlie, George, Floyd, Ned, Cora, Lizzie and Osie. The mother, who before her marriage was Lucretia Ann Painter, was the daughter of Jacob and Ruth Painter, and one of a family of six children: George, John, Nettie, Melissa and Sarah, being the others. Mrs. Combs was born in 1850 in Ohio and was twenty years of age when she came to live in Taylor county.
When called to exercise his franchise Mr. Pullen gives his vote to the republican candidate as the choice of the party with whose principles he is in closest accord. He enjoys fraternal relations with the New Market lodge of the Knights of Pythias and is an ardent supporter of the ideals held up by this organization. Although he frequently attends the meetings of the lodge, he devotes the greater share of his time to the work of his farm and to his stock. The day's toil is hard but it is to his liking and he feels requited by the fair competence that is his now.
HENRY H. PUTNAM
Among the esteemed residents of Bedford who are now living retired is numbered Henry H. Putnam, who for years was actively associated with farming interests in Taylor county. He owned and cultivated a good tract of land in Benton township, having two hundred acres which he transformed into one of the fine farms of the locality. He has been a resident of the county for thirty-six years, having arrived in 1873.
He is far separated from the place of his nativity, for he was born in Windham county, Vermont, August 20, 1840, and there he was reared to manhood upon the home farm, early becoming familiar with the duties and labors that fall to the lot of the New England farmer. In response to the country's call for troops he enlisted in February, 1862, in defense of the Union, joining Company H of the Eighth Vermont Volunteer Infantry. The regiment went south, joining the Department of the Gulf. At New Orleans Mr. Putnam was taken ill and sent to the hospital, where he was later discharged for disability. Returning to Vermont it took two or three years for him to recuperate from the effects of his military experience.
(Page 501) Mr. Putnam made his first trip to Iowa in the spring of 1865, going to Dubuque, after which he worked on a farm and in a dairy for one season. Retracing his steps eastward as far as Whiteside county, Illinois, he was there engaged in farming for two or three years and also carried on general farming near Sterling, Illinois, for one summer.
While living in Whiteside county, Mr. Putnam was married on the 10th of November, 1869, the lady of his choice being Cordelia Chamberlain, who was born in Steuben county, New York, where she remained until a little maiden of seven years. She then accompanied her parents to Whiteside county, Illinois, and was reared and educated there and at Amboy, Lee county, Illinois. After completing her own education she became a teacher and was engaged in this occupation up to the time of her marriage. Mr. and Mrs. Putnam began their domestic life in Lee county, Illinois, near Amboy, where he engaged in farming for four years. He came to Iowa in 1873 after previously visiting the state in the fall of 1872, at which time he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land lying in Benton township, Taylor county. Only a few acres of this tract had been broken, while a small house was upon the place. With characteristic energy he at once began to turn the sod and the fields were harrowed and then planted, while in other directions the work of general improvement was carried forward. He built his fences, erected a good house and there engaged in farming for twenty-two years, after which he sold that property and bought another farm one and a quarter miles west of Bedford. It comprised two hundred acres of fairly improved land, which he rented. He bought twelve and a half acres at Bedford, built a comfortable and attractive residence in the city and now has a good home here. In connection with general farming in the production of the cereals best adapted to soil and climate, he also engaged in raising and feeding stock. His business affairs were capably conducted, bringing him a gratifying measure of success that now classes him with the men of affluence in the county.
Mr. and Mrs. Putnam have five sons and three daughters: Jason P., who is married and follows farming in Benton township, owning one of the best improved farms in Taylor county; Rev. I. E. Putnam, a minister of the Methodist Episcopal church who is now in the Theological College at Evanston, Illinois; Rev. Charles H., who is a gradate of Cornell college,and is now attending the Theological College at Evanston; Clyde, who is a graduate of Cornell college and is principal of the schools at Armour, South Dakota; Leslie R., who was formerly engaged in teaching and is a graduate in music at Cornell college, having already won considerable fame as a soloist; Flora, who formerly engaged in teaching but is now the wife of William Fitch, a farmer of Benton township; Etta E., who taught for ten terms in this county and was in the county superintendent's office with Mr. Crosson for four years and is now the wife of Morgan Mason, a farmer and auctioneer of Wakeeney, Kansas; and Stella, who has recently completed the high school course in Bedford, and is now teaching. Mr. and Mrs. Putnam also lost two children: Harry H., who died at the age of five years; and Elmer, who passed away when three months old.
In his political views Mr. Putnam is a republican where national issues are involved, but in local elections does not consider the party affiliations of candidates as an essential question. He cast his first presidential ballot for Abraham Lincoln in 1864 and has since supported every presidential nominee of the party. He has served as justice of the peace and has been officially identified with the schools, the cause of education finding in him a stalwart champion. For the past thirty-two years Mr. and Mrs. Putnam have sent from one to five pupils to the public schools. They are members of the Bedford Methodist Episcopal church and Mrs. Putnam belongs to the Woman's Christian Temperance Union. Mr. Putnam holds membership with the Grand Army of the Republic and delights in its camp fires and in recalling the scenes and incidents of war times. He was a loyal soldier but has been equally faithful to his country in days of peace and has the strongest attachment of the stars and stripes.