SAMUEL C. GARDNER is engaged in general farming and stock-raising on section 7, Cedar Township. He was born in Franklin County, Ohio, Feb. 9, 1832, and is a son of William M. and Aner (Merritt) Gardner, the former a native of Virginia and the latter of Maryland. He was reared on a farm, and received his education at Oberlin College, Ohio. On leaving college he followed teaching in Ohio for twelve years. In 1855 he came to Washington County, Iowa, and for three years taught the public school at Lexington, Cedar Township. When the call was made for men to suppress the Rebellion, he enlisted in the 25th Iowa Infantry and served till the close of the war. He was in the siege of Vicksburg and the battle of Jackson. In the second battle of Jackson he received a severe wound in the foot by a cannon ball, which disabled him further active service in the field. He was then sent to Madison, Wis., and was discharged at the close of the war.
Returning home, Mr. Garner went into the mercantile business at Lexington, Washington county, and continued in that business for eight years. Having lost his health by too close confinement in the store, in 1872 he moved to his farm on section 7, Cedar Township, which he purchased in 1857. His first purchase was fifty acres of raw land, which he improved and to which he has added by subsequent purchase, until he now owns 200 acres of fine land under a good state of cultivation. He was married, in 1866, to Miss E. J. Young, a native of Indians, and daughter of John A. and Nancy Young. By this union there are two childrenHoward B. and Aner E. Mr. and Mrs. Gardner are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
On coming to this county, Mr. Gardner was in very limited circumstances, but by close attention to his business, coupled with energy, he has acquired a fine property, and is now numbered among the well-to-do farmers of Washington County. Possessed of a fine education, and being a constant and systematic reader, he has acquired a knowledge of all matters of public interest to a degree second to but few in the county. HIs father died in Ohio in 1880, at the age of seventy years, and his mother in 1876, also at the age of seventy years. They were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
WILLIAM G. GAMON, who is located on section 2, Marion Township, was born in the city of London, England, in 1839, and is the son of Evan and Mary Ann (May) Gamon, the former a native of Wales, and the latter of London. When he was an infant, his mother died, and he was sent to his grandmother in Wales, where he was reared to the occupation of a miner. Believing the New World to be a better place for acquiring more than a mere living, Mr. Gamon sailed from Liverpool to New York in 1866, in a German vessel, and was eighteen days on the ocean, during which time a severe storm arose which blew them eighty miles out of their course. On landing in New York, he at once proceeded to Henry County, Iowa, where he remained one year, engaged in farming, and then settled on section 2, Marion Township, where he bought 180 acres of partially improved land. To his original purchase he has since added forty acres, all of which is well improved and under a high state of cultivation. HIs house and barn were erected at a cost of $2,000. In addition to general farming, he is engaged somewhat extensively in stock-raising.
In the fall of 1867, Mr. Gamon was united in marriage with Miss Rachel Putnam, a daughter of Jacob G. and Ellen (Edmondson) Putnam. By
this union there were seven children: Mary A. died in infancy; Sarah, William R., Winnie Ellen, Elizabeth, Hannah Belle and Eva May. In politics, Mr. Gamon is a Democrat, and has served as Township Trustee; he was once elected to the office of Justice of the Peace, but refused to qualify. HIs father died in England in 1864. As may be inferred from what has already been said, Mr. Gamon commenced life in humble circumstances, and received but a very limited education in the common schools of Wales; but he was bred to habits of industry, and given to understand that success only follows upon industry. By hard work and such economy as was necessary, he has acquired a fine property, and has surrounded himself with many of he conveniences and comforts of life.
ISRAEL H. FRIEND, deceased, was one of the pioneers of Washington County. He was a native of Dracut, Middlesex Co., Mass., born Aug. 31, 1815. In his native town he received a common-school education and learned the trade of a shoemaker. In 1835, he left his native State and located in Jefferson County, N.Y., where he remained working at his trade for two years, and then turned his steps westward, locating in Ohio, where he remained until 1839, then crossing the Father of Waters into Iowa, he located at Mt. Pleasant, Henry County. In this place he remained until the spring of 1840, when he came to Washington County and located at Brighton, which was his home until his death. On arriving at Brighton, he at once embarked in the mercantile business, he engaged in pork-packing during the winter.
On the 21st of July, 1846, Mr. Friend was united in marriage with Miss Lucy A. McCulloch, a daughter of John G. and Isabella (Mullen) McCulloch, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania, but at an early day moved to Harrison County, Ohio. Mr. McCulloch was a man of more than ordinary ability, a great reader, and highly respected. Mr. and Mrs. McC. were the parents of ten children, five of whomare living: Amanda, now the widow of David B. Atkinson, resides in Brighton; John W. lives in Seward, Neb.; Lucy A., the widow of the subject of this sketch; Val., the wife of George W. Sheridan, of Brighton; James N., of Lucas County, Iowa. In early days Mr. and Mrs. McCulloch were members of the Presbyterian Church, and for some years he was an Elder in that church, but on coming to Brighton he united with the Congregational Church and for years was one of its Deacons. He was a strong temperance worker, a stanch Republican, and a man well posted in the affairs of his country; he was a kind father and a loving husband, and was respected for his moral worth. He died in this county, Sept. 11, 1864.
Mr. and Mrs. Friend are the parents of two sons: Alvin M. now resides in Iowa City, to which place he moved for the purpose of educating his children; he has always been a successful business man. Golbert M. is now a successful merchant in Brighton. On the discovery of gold in California; in the spring of 1849, Mr. Friend fitted out a company and sent them overland to that New Elodrado. In the spring of 1850, he fitted out another company consisting of twelve men, including himself, and crossed the plains, enduring all the hardships incidental to such a journey. He remained in California engaged in mining until 1857, when he returned to Brighton, and again embarked in the mercantile business, subsequently taking into partnership with him his two sons. In 1876 he retired from the mercantile business, leaving his son Gilbert as sole proprietor.
In early life Mr. Friend was a Democrat, on with strong anti-slavery tendencies, but on account of the position taken by his party on the slavery question he abandoned it and became identified with the Republicans, with whom he acted until his death. He died at his home in Brighton, Nov. 26, 1883, leaving a widow and two sons. She is a woman of fine ability, and to her wise counsel and assistance her husband was indebted for much of the success which attended him through life. She is a member
of the Presbyterian Church, and takes an active interest in all its work. Mr. Friend was a great reader, was principally self-educated, and a self-made man. Systematic in all his business affairs, he could not help but succeed, and in his death the county lost one of its most useful citizens.
J. P. McKENZIE, Justice of the Peace, and notary public, Ainsworth, Iowa, was born in Beaver County, Pa., Feb. 25, 1821, and is a son of Allen and Deborah (Morton) McKenzie, the former a native of Pennsylvania, and of Scotch descent, his grandfather McKenzie coming from Scotland and settling in Pennsylvania. The latter is a native of Ireland. They reared a family of eight children, only two of whom are now livingMargaret, the widow of David Matthews, and our subject. both parents died in Pennsylvania several years ago.
The subject of this sketch was reared upon a farm, and for about twenty-five years after reaching his maturity was engaged as a farmer, generally working on a farm in the summer and teaching school in the winter months. HIs education was obtained in subscription schools of his native State, with the addition of six months at a High School. On the 16th of October, 1849, he was united in marriage with Miss Phoebe McClelland, a daughter of John and Anna E. (Keister) McClelland, the former of
Irish and the latter of French and German descent. She was born in Butler County, Pa., July 19, 1831. They have had three children: Josephine E., the widow of Dr. Milton Keister, of Illinois; Anna R., the widow of Rev. James P. Tedford, a minister of the United Presbyterian Church, who has one child, J. Paul; and Madge M., who is the wife of Dr. G. A. Solomon, of Beatrice, Neb.
Mr. McKenzie came to Washington County, Iowa, in 1864, and settled in Washington, where he remained seven years engaged in the mercantile trade. In 1872 he came to Ainsworth, where he has since continued to reside. In 1874 he was elected Justice of the Peace, which position he has since continued to hold, and for the past eight years has been a notary public. Mr. and Mrs. McKenzie are members of the United Presbyterian Church at Ainsworth, Mr. McKenzie being one of its Ruling Elders.
J.F.R. LEONARD, farmer, stock-raiser and dealer, resides on section 11, Oregon Township, where he is the owner of 240 acres of fine land, all of which is under a high state of cultivation. He was born in Greene County, Pa., Dec. 10, 1832, and is the son of John and Hannah (Reinhart) Leonard, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania, and of German descent; the former died when our subject was but seven years of age; the latter is still living in Whiteside County, Ill. They reared a family of six children, of whom three are now living.
The subject of this sketch was reared on a farm, and received his education in the common schools, which has been supplemented by a thorough and systematic course of reading and study. In 1856 he went to Kansas, and was there during the time of the border troubles. While there he espoused the side of the Free-Soil party, and did all in his power to make Kansas a free State. In the attempt to force slavery upon the territory a resort to arms was had, and it became necessary for those in favor of freedom to meet the attack of the slave-holders and their allies. Mr. Leonard served under Jim Lane, and was in numerous skirmishes, including what was known as the battle of Lawrence. He was well acquainted with John Brown and his sons, and for some time was a companion of one of the latter. While a citizen of Kansas, he engaged in teaching, and taught several terms of public school. He was elected to the office of county Superintendent of Schools, and also served as County Surveyor of Chase County.
On the breaking out of the Rebellion, Mr. Leonard returned to Illinois, to which State his parents had moved at an early day, and there enlisted, in 1862, in the 93d Illinois Infantry, and served until the close of the war. The history of the 93d is a glorious one, and in the various campaigns and battles in which it participated Mr. Leonard was actively engaged. He was in the siege of Vicksburg, the battles of Champion Hills, Missionary Ridge, Atlanta, Macon and Savannah. He was in the grand review at Washington, and was mustered out at Louisville, Ky., and discharged at Chicago. Soon after the close of the war, he came to Washington County, Iowa, and here married, in 1870, Miss Margaret A. Sands, a native of Tennessee, born June 11, 1840, and daughter of Benjamin and Rosanna (Henderson) Sands. To them, have been born five childrenHannah R., Lillie M., Hattie J., John B. and Archie B.
When Mr. Leonard settled upon his present farm it was in a wild state. All the improvements which now exist were made by his own hands, the farm now being considered one of the best in Oregon Township. His life has been a most active one, and he has lived to see the day when he is surrounded by almost everything that can make a man happy. Although residing upon a farm, and engaging in the hard work necessary to keep it up and further improve it, he yet finds time to read the various standard works of the day, and to keep posted in general literature. In the past few years he has pursued the course laid down by the Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle, and has received his diploma.
Mr. Leonard is a member of Ainsworth Lodge No. 365, A.F. & A.M. He is also a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which body his wife and three oldest children are also members. In politics he is a Republican, one of the stalwart
kind. He believes in its principles, and does not yet believe that its mission is ended. While not numbered among the earliest settlers of Washington County, Mr. Leonard has been so closely identified with its interests, and has been so actively engaged, that few men are better known or more highly respected.
ELLIS WALTON, who resides on section 35, Clay Township, is numbered among the pioneers of Washington County. He is a native of Pennsylvania, born in Lycoming County, Sept. 8,1 813, and is the son of Isaac and Ellen (Davis) Walton. The Waltons are of English descent, three brothers of that name coming with William Penn to America, and were with him under the elm when the treaty was made with the Indians. The grandfather of our subject and two of his brothers bought one of the reserve tracts on the Susquehanna River from William Penn.
The subject of this sketch was reared on his father's farm, and received his education in the subscription schools of his native State and county. In april, 1835, he left Pennsylvania and went to Sangamon County, Ill., where he remained but a short time, and then went to Tazewell County in the same State. In February, 1836, in company with Jacob and Walter Dillon, with his knapsack upon his shoulder, he started for Iowa, making the entire trip on foot. He visited this section of country, and when the land came into market purchased 160 acres in Clay Township. The Indians were still in this country, and Mr. Walton formed the acquaintance of the celebrated Indian chief, Wapello, and was his fast friend until the death of the latter. He has taken many meals with the old chief, and learned the Pottawatomie language so that he could converse with him.
Mr. Walton was united in marriage with Miss Elizabeth J. Edwards, a native of Clinton County, Ohio, and daughter of Gideon and Mary (Dillon) Edwards, the former a native of Pennsylvania, and the latter of Virginia. Twelve children have blessed this union: Isaac, born April 23, 1841, died Sept. 23, 1885; Ann M., born Nov. 27, 1842, is now the wife of Freeman Dunbar, a farmer in Brighton Township; Mary, born April 10, 1843, died Dec. 11.1851; Ellen, born, Aug. 7, 1845, resides at home; George, born Aug. 27, 1848, now resides in Kansas; Charles, born Aug. 30, 1850, married Latta Tory, and is engaged in farming in Clay Township; Jane, born april 29, 1853, died Jan. 29, 1881; Sarah, born Aug. 7, 1855, lives at home; Ellis, born Dec. 20, 1857, married Kate Kendall, and resides in this township; William, born Feb. 8, 1860, resides at home; John, born June 20, 1862, died September 13, of the same year; Thomas, born Feb. 14, 1865. The mother of these children died March 23, 1878. She was born and reared in the Quaker faith, and was a most kind and indulgent parent.
Mr. Walton has from time to time added to his first purchase until he now owns 290 acres of fine land, all of which is under a high state of cultivation, with a good dwelling-house and all necessary out-buildings. Charles, Ellis, William and Thomas have untied their strength, and together are engaged in the cultivation of the farm. For the past nine years they have been grading fine stock, and in the spring of 1887 purchased a fine full-bred Norman horse, a beautiful black seventeen and a half hands high, and weighing 2,000 pounds. The family are all admirers of fine horses, and as stated, the boys are now turning their attention to the raising of extra stock, including Short-horn cattle. Ellis Walton is a pioneer among pioneers, and well deserves the honor and respect which he receives as one of the oldest settlers of Washington County.
GILMORE VINCENT, residing on section 16, Brighton Township, is numbered among the pioneers of Washington County of 1842. He was born in Belmont County, Ohio, Aug. 12, 1825, and is the son of Thomas and Mary (Parr) Vincent. They were natives of Ireland, but came to america with their parents when children, and were reared in Pennsylvania. Just before the last struggle with Great Britain, they emigrated to Belmont County, Ohio, where Thomas Vincent enlisted and served during the war that followed.
At the close of his term of service, he returned to Belmont County, opened up a farm, and subsequently engaged in the mercantile business.
Thomas Vincent was a man of decided views upon all questions of public interest, and was one of the first to advocate the abolition of slavery in the United States. His home was at all times a refuge for the escaping slave, whom he assisted on his way to freedom. In 1842 the family came to Washington County, Iowa, and located in Franklin Township, about two miles from Washington, where the father died in 1845. Mrs. Mary Vincent died in 1871. They were members of the United Presbyterian Church, and were strong in the faith. Two children yet survive themThomas B. and Gilmore, the subject of this sketch.
Gilmore Vincent, proprietor of the Brighton Mills, and general farmer, came with his parents to this county in 1842, at which time he was seventeen years of age. He assisted them in opening up their farm. HIs father dying soon after coming to this county, he was thrown upon his own resources, and at once went to work to carve out his own fortune. Success has crowned all his efforts, he now being the owner of 510 acres of land and the home farm, together with 280 acres, which includes the mill property. He was united in marriage with Miss. N. C. Lewis, a daughter of Hon. William D. Lewis, of this county. Nine children have been born to them: Melissa, the wife of D. Herold; Addison, a miller at Brighton; Retta, the wife of Samuel Alexander, of Guthrie Center, Iowa; Eva, the wife of Samuel Longacre, agent of the C., R.I. & P.R.R.; Lillie, Ira, Robert, Thaddeus S. and Rena. Mr. and Mrs. Vincent are members of the United Presbyterian Church of Brighton.
THOMAS W. LIVINGSTON, apiarist, resides on section 16, Oregon Township. He was born in Washington County, N.Y., Feb. 29, 1852, and is a son of William H. and Catherine (Bain) Livingston, a sketch of whom appears elsewhere in this volume. He came with his parents to this county in 1853, when but one year old. He was reared upon a farm, and continued in the occupation of a farmer until 1877, when he commenced to divide his attention to his present business. He has now 180 stands of bees, mostly of the Italian breed, and has all the late improvements for extracting honey from the comb, and still preserve the latter for further use. He has machinery for producing the comb foundation. Mr. L. manufactures all the boxes he uses, and sells the honey produced in various parts of the country.
Mr. Livingston was married in this county, in 1880, to Ettie, daughter of Henry N. and Carrie (Seeley) Breed, the former a native of New York, and of Irish descent, and the latter also of New York. They came to this county in 1865, where they still continue to reside. Mrs. Livingston was born in New York, Aug. 4, 1860. They have one child, Minnie E. Politically, Mr. Livingston is a Republican. As a citizen he stands well in the estimation of all.