The first to make a settlement [in Franklin Township] was Jesse Eller, who, early in the spring of 1854, took up a claim on section 18, and commenced to open up a farm. He broke forty or fifty acres, and put up a round log house. He lived on this place until about 1874, when he removed to Mills county, and from thence to Pottawattamie county, where he died, June 18, 1884. He was born in Wilkes county, North Carolina, and was of German extraction, although he was reared in Indiana. He was quite a hunter and trapper during the winter, but when spring had come, the gun was laid by. and the implements of husbandry were taken hold of with a will, and in a few years he had a good farm opened on the northeast corner of Turkey Grove. During the civil war, times were very hard, money scarce, and the comforts of life very high. Mr. Eller made more money than any other man in the vicinity, trapping and hunting mink, otter, wolves and other fur animals. A good mink skin was worth from three to five dollars, and other furs in proportion.
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. 789.