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1884 Biographies


One of the most prominent figures in the history of Cass county, is that of Isaac Dickerson, who came to this part of the State in 1856, and settling at Lewis, has made the county his home ever since. He was the postmaster in Lewis from 1856 to 1861, and was elected treasurer and recorder in 1857, as above stated, and held that office consecutively for nine years. On retiring from this office, he embarked in the real estate business, in Lewis, and was the first in that line in the county. When the town of Atlantic was laid out, he was one of the proprietors of the site, and has been largely instrumental in building up the large and growing city of Atlantic. He has three times been the mayor of the city, and councilman two terms. Mr. Dickerson, is interested in the Cass county bank, and in the real estate business of Dickerson and Wood, besides several minor businesses. He is a native of the "Old Keystone" State, having been born near Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, in 1831, on a farm, and where he remained until fourteen years of age. In 1845, he in company with his parents came to Iowa, then a territory, locating in Davis county, where the family settled upon a piece of land, but both parents died within the year. From there, Isaac went to Ottumwa, where he spent two years at school. In 1848, he went to Fairfield, where he entered into a dry goods store as clerk. In 1851, he removed to Oskaloosa, Iowa, and took charge of a store in that place. He was married, November 22, 1852, to Miss Olivia L. Wright, a native of Indiana. He continued to reside in Oskaloosa, until 1856, when removed to Lewis, where he ran a general merchandise store, acting as agent of Shoemaker and Wilson, of Oskaloosa. He was appointed postmaster under President Pierce, and was the first to introduce pigeon holes in this office. Mr. Dickerson, although not very actively engaged in business life, still may be said to be one of the foremost business men of the county, and one of its most influential citizens.

In the winter of 1863-4, the General Assembly of the State passed an act separating the two branches of this office, and providing for the election of officers to each. By this same act, the incumbent at the time of its taking effect, had the privilege of retaining, for the balance of the term, either of the offices, and Isaac Dickerson, who then occupied this enviable official station, chose to enter that of the COUNTY TREASURER letting that of recorder go, thus becoming the first to fill the position of treasurer after the separation.

Contributed by Lisa Varnes-Rex 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, pg. 357.

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