Tama County, IA
USGenWeb Project

Otter Creek Township

Taken from the History of Tama County, Iowa Its Cities, Towns and Villages
Early Reminiscences, Personal Incidents and Anecdotes,
And A Complete Business Directory Of The County
By Samuel D. Chapman 1879

Contributed by Patty Delmott and Transcribed by Cyndi Vertrees

This is one among the finest townships in the County and lies in 83 north range 14 west. The Iowa River runs easterly, south of, but near the southern boundary of this township. Otter Creek runs through its western side, bearing however gradually south easterly as it approaches the southern part and leaves the township near its south east corner. The bottom lands of these two streams are very rich and compose nearly one third of the township. The remainder of the township is nearly equally divided between high rolling prairie and bluff land, the latter having considerable timber and is nearly as well settled up as the other parts of the township. These bluff lands of our County as they are called, are by no means barrens, as some of our eastern readers might suppose, but when brought under cultivation are very productive; generally not quite as good for corn but better for wheat than the rolling prairies or bottom lands. They consist of high rolling lands, sometimes hilly, covered with hazel brush and sometimes intermingled with small trees and some with large timber. This description of bluff lands is true of all in the County.

The first settlement affected in this township was in the year 1853. A. B. Hancox, was the first settler, erecting his cabin on section 36. A. Tompkins, Robert Carter, S. Lake, N. Lewis, C. Powell and H. Riddle, were among the early settlers, coming in at an early day and taking up land.

The township was organized February 5th, 1856, and the first election was held at the dwelling house of a. Tompkins, on the first Monday in April of that year.

No better improved farms are found, than those in this township. The people are all of the industrious class, and are constantly adding to their wealth. C. E. Hayes, T. Barlow, D. C. Lamb and A. J. Tyler are among the leading farmers and stock raisers of the township.

In this township we find one church of the Catholic denomination, erected about the year 1875, located in the north eastern part of the township. The first school taught in the township, was in a log cabin on section 19. Miss Harriet Hatfield, teacher.

The first birth was Sumner Tompkins, son of A. and A. M. Tompkins, who was born March 26th, 1855.

The first death was Mrs. Robert Carter, who died March 20th, 1854.

The first marriage was Mr. Logan McChesney to Miss L. A. Hancox, in the year 1854 by A. LaDow.

Those serving in the offices of Justices, Clerks and Trustees are as follows.

Justices: H. S. cloud, d. Rusk, G. Pickett, N. Lewis, J. H. Brooks, A. Lane, J. J. and A. M. Staley, E. M. Stevens, S. M. Harris, M. Mitchell, O. Budlong, H. Jacobs and W. P. Soth.

Trustees:M. Mitchell, a. Tompkins, J. H. Vorhies, J. Staley, S. M. Harris, J. Higgins, L. Carmichael, A. Baker, E. A. Butnham, C. M. Reed, J. H. Brooks, A. Spalding, A. Sheldong, A. J. Tyler, A. Johnston, S. Stigers, J. L. Jackson, G. McGee, M. W. Varner, M. Hunt, J. P. Evans, J. M. Hayes, W. Wick, J. Farley, E. P. Smith, W. A. Dowd, A. Kosta, T. J. Hoadley, C. Cross, O. Ferris,

ClerksR. C. M. Wells, J. JU. Staley, J. L. Jackson, D. C. Lamb, J. J. Stevens, A. M. Stailey, M. Mitchell, N. H. Bidwell and W. P. Soth.

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