History of Taylor County, Iowa: from the earliest historic times to 1910 by  Frank E. Crosson. Chicago, The S.J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1910
(transcribed by Linda Kestner: lfkestner3@msn.com)
Page 676
The rich prairie land of Taylor county offers excellent inducements to the agriculturist, who finds that his labors are attended with substantial results, for his energy and industry are guided by discriminating judgment.  Among those who are classed with the prosperous farmers and stock raisers of the community is Harry Allen, living on section 23, Polk township, where he is now cultivating his farm of one hundred and sixty acres.  He took up his abode here in March, 1890, and in the intervening years his labors have wrought a commendable change in the appearance of the place and in the productiveness of the fields.
Mr. Allen is a native of Illinois, his birth having occurred in Knox county, on the 30th of September, 1851.  There he was reared in the usual manner of farm lads of the period, working in the fields through the summer months and attending the public schools in winter.  He remained with his father until about thirty years of age, aiding him in carrying on the farm.  He was married in that county and then began farming on his own account, continuing a resident of Knox county, Illinois, until 1890, when he sold his property there and removed westward, to Iowa.  On reaching Taylor county he took up his abode upon a tract of land on section 23, Polk township, which he had purchased in January of that year.  Looking over his place he noted the improvements which should be made, recognized the opportunities for further development and has carried on the work of general advancement with continued success to the present time.  He has repaired the house, built a barn and other outbuildings, has fenced the (page 679) place and made the farm an excellent property.  He first bought one hundred and twenty acres of land, but he has since increased his possessions by an additional purchase of forty acres adjoining.  He raises and feeds stock, fattening a large number of hogs each year and all of the stock he handles is of high grade.  He has an imported Clydesdale stallion for breeding purposes and has bred many of the best horses in this county.  He is an excellent judge of stock and this has constituted an important feature in his business success.  He also raises good crops each year, for the system of rotation keeps his land in good condition, while the soil is naturally rich and productive.
While still a resident of Knox county, Illinois, Mr. Allen was married on the 6th of February, 1879, to Miss Tillie Hawkins, who was born and reared in Knox county.  In 1896 he was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, with whom he had traveled life's journey happily for about seventeen years.  She passed away on the 7th of January, leaving five children: Pearl, who was married in Creston, Iowa, on the 18th of May, 1904, to Miss America Gaddis, a native of Taylor county, and is now associated with his father in carrying on the home farm; Ray, who is in Knox county, Illinois; Cora, the wife of Fred Gaddis, a farmer of Ross township, Taylor county; Lloyd, who is in Illinois; and Dean, who is with his grandparents in Ross township, they having reared him from his infancy.  Mr. and Mrs. Allen also lost four children in early childhood.
Since age conferred upon him the right of franchise Mr. Allen has been a stalwart democrat where state and national issues are involved but casts an independent local ballot.  The honors and emoluments of office have had no attraction for him as he has ever preferred to concentrate his energies upon his business affairs.  The extent and importance of his activities have brought him a wide acquaintance in Hopkins, Missouri, in Bedford, Iowa, and throughout this portion of the country.  He is recognized and commended for his spirit of enterprise, diligence and keen discernment, and his sterling worth has won for him the confidence and high regard of those with whom business and social relations have brought him in contact.