Nicholas Adams, one of the representative citizens of Read Township, was a son of Samuel and Susannah (Shobert) Adams, natives of Pennsylvania, and both now deceased, the former dying on April 22, 1866, in Clayton County, where they settled in 1855, the latter in her native State. The subject of this memoir was married in 1856 to Polly Howard, whose parents, Jacob and Rowana Howard, nee Ross, were natives of New York, and settled in Clayton County in 1832, being among the very earliest settlers. Jacob Howard died here in 1864, and his wife followed him in 1880. Mr. and Mrs. Adams have been blessed with seven children, of whom Orsimus, born Sept 1, 1857; James, Dec. 24, 1866; Mima, April 30, 1869; Orrin C., Oct. 21, 1871; Clara, Jan. 26, 1874; Charles Henry, May 21, 1876; Myrtle, April 19, 1879, are living. The deceased are John, born March 16, 1859, died Jan. 11, 1861, and Julia. Mr. Adams enlisted in the 1862 in the First Iowa Cavalry, Company B, and served his full term, and veteraned at Little Rock, Ar. He participated in many of the battles fought under Generals Stute, Carr, Davidson, Scholfield and Custer (who was killed by the Indians in the Black Hills). Mr. Adams escapted without a wound, and was discharged at Davenport, Ia. Mrs. Adams is one of the earliest settlers of the county, there being only eight white persons here when she came with her father, and on the site of the present flourishing city of Elkader there stood but one small log hut, that of Elisha Boardman. Clayton County was at that time a vast, unexplored region, inhabited by the red men, and the only sounds that disturbed Nature's solitude were the cry of the coyote and howling of wolves. To point to-day to the finely cultivated farms and comfortable homes, to listen to the hum of machinery, and note everywhere the signs of busy, active life, needs no further evidence of the work performed by these hardy pioneers.
source: History of Clayton
County, Iowa, 1882, p. 1073-1074
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