CAPTAIN JAMES H. COE
Captain James H. Coe is a native of Granville, Hampden county, Massachesetts, born October 4, 1818, and is a son of Alfred A. and Rosanna (Stewart) Coe. He began acquiring his education in his native county. When he was fifteen years of age, his parents removed to Hartland, Litchfield county, Connecticut, where his father followed the business of wagon making, and he, (James H.) finished his education. He then went to work at the carpenter's trade which occupation he followed until he came to Iowa in 1855, locating then, in Lee county. In the spring of 1857, James H. Coe, Amos Gridley, John Barber and William Arnold came to Lewis, Cass county, accompanied by their families. They found provisions, particularly flour, very scarce and expensive, and to obtain a cow, James Coe sent back to Lee county, and had Oliver Mills purchase for him, for the sum of fifty dollars, the cow which he had sold, on his removal, for thirty-five dollars. He was married May 10, 1837, to Maria Barber, daughter of Alson and Hannah (Humphrey) Barber. The latter was a sister of President Humphrey, of Amherst college, Massachusetts. Her paternal grandfather was a soldier in the Revolution. Her parents resided in Connecticut where her father died in April, 1880, aged eighty-six, and her mother in 1878, at the age of eighty years. Mr. and Mrs. Coe have four children...George, married to Fannie Lane, and living in Lewis; Cornelia, wife of Henry Sandoe, living in Pennsylvania; William, living at home; and Charles, married to Hillis Kimpson, residing in Bear Grove township. Early in 1861, Captain Coe raised a company of about forty men to serve in the Union army, but as the company could not be filled up in time for the first call, he permitted them to become a part of the Fourth Iowa Infantry. He then proceeded to raise another company, which was, with a few exceptions, entirely from Cass county, and which he raised and got to Des Moines, inside of three weeks. he was commissioned captain of company I, of the Twenty-third Iowa Infantry, by Governor Kirkwood, September 19, 1862 (Something wrong with this date because it's earlier than his commissioning date). The regiment went from Des Moines, to St. Louis, and wintered at Camp Patterson, spending the latter part of the winter in marching down near the Arkansas line. Captain Coe was discharged from the service March 4, 1862, while the regiment were encamped on Iron Mountain. He resigned on the advice of first assistant surgeon in chief, Bosbachel, for the reason of sickness which incapacitated him for command. He returned to his farm near Lewis, but finding himself unable to do farm work, purchased property in Lewis, and removed thither. He owns a find farm in Bear Grove township, which is occupied by his youngest son. Capt. Coe was one of the charter members of the G.A.R. He was elected a member of the school board at the time Lewis became an independent district, and was chiefly instrumental in securing the erection of the present commodious school building, which was built while he was a member of the board. he has served three years in the same capacity, since that time. Captain Coe's parents died in Michigan in 1862, and are buried at Matherton, Ionia county, in that State.
Transcribed by Gloria Goltiani from "History of Cass County, Iowa. Together With Sketches of its Towns, Villages and Townships, Educational, Civil, Military and Political History: Portraits of Prominent Persons, and Biographies of Old Settlers and Representative Citizens." Springfield, Ill.: Continental Historical Company, 1884, pp. 553-554.