V. B. STORY, Postmaster of Wellman, is a native of Franklin County, Ohio, born Sept. 20, 1836, and is the son of M. D. and Anna (Ingram) Story, He was reared on a farm and educated in the common schools. He continued in farm work until Nov. 2, 1861, when he enlisted in Co. I, 13th Iowa Vol. Inf., and soon after entering the service was taken sick with the measles and lay in a hospital thirty days, then came home on a furlough and remained sixty days. He reported for duty while the regiment was at Shiloh, and went with it to Corinth. He was there ordered back to Quincy, Ill., and sent to the hospital, where he remained until October, 1862, when he was discharged for disability and returned to his home. On returning home he turned his attention to farming, in which occupation he continued until July 1, 1879, when he took a contract for carrying the
mail from Washington to Windham, in Johnson County, Iowa, and continued in that business for six years. In February, 1886, he was appointed Postmaster at Wellman, and is yet in the discharge of the duties of the office, in connection with a restaurant.
On the 18th of February, 1864, Mr. Story was united in marriage with Miss Marian Beatty, a native of Franklin County, Ohio, born Jan. 29, 1844. They are the parents of three children: Wilber L., born Feb. 11, 1865; Nora, born Nov. 19, 1866, is now the wife of Charles Reasman; Bird, born May 27, 1871. Mrs. Story is a daughter of James S. and Mahala (Heath) Beatty. Her father died April 6, 1865, and her mother is now making her home with Mr. and Mrs. Story. Their son Wilbur is a telegraph operator in Pottawattamie County, Iowa. Mr. Story is one of the representative citizens of Wellman, and is well esteemed by all. He is a member of the I.O.O.F. and the G.A.R.
JAMES H. AULD, Recorder and Township Clerk of Brighton, was born in Fayette County, Pa., on the 22d of Ocober, 1825, at the old red tavern at Brownsville. His father, James Auld, was born on a vessel in 1792, while his parents were on their way from Ireland to this country. He married CAtherine Grove, who was born in Fayette County, Pa., in 1796. Mr. Auld began life as a merchant, but having failed, purchased the old red tavern, near Brownsville, where he continued for some years. Mr. and Mrs. Auld were the parents of eleven children who lived to maturity, and five of whom are now living: Hannah, the widow of David Cauffman, now resides in Peoria, Ill.; Martha is the wife of Jonas Kelsy, of Perry County, Ohio; Adeline is the wife of Austin Nickson, of Peoria, Ill.; Elizabeth was married to J. G. Jobes, of Golden, Cal.; Catherine is the widow of Samuel Lida, now of Champaign County, Ill. Mr. Auld died in 1831 and Mrs. Auld in 1871.
The subject of this sketch was educated in the district schools, receiving a liberal education. On the death of his father, in 1831, when he was but six years of age, he was given in charge of a brother-in-law, and when ten years old went with him to Fairfield County, Ohio, where he remained until he was thirteen years old. He then ran away, and subsequently bound himself with a man to learn the chair-making business. He remained with him one year, and then went to Perry County, Ohio, and engaged in the same business, remaining there until 1845. He then went to Pittsburgh, Pa., which he thought would be a good place to work, and there learned the painter's trade.
Returning to Ohio, on the 9th of September, 1848, Mr. Auld was united in marriage in Champaign County, with Miss Hannah Thompson, who was born in Martinsburg, Va., Nov. 25, 1825. In the spring of 1849, he came to Washington County, Iowa, and located in Brighton, where he has since resided. Here he first engaged in the manufacture of chairs, forming a partnership with W. G. Israel, and continuing in that trade for twelve years, of which he was a pioneer. He traded this property for a sawmill in Clay Township, and in 1860 was elected Assessor for Brighton Township. He has filled the office of Recorder since 1871. He has also served as Mayor of the village. Mr. Auld is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and for the past fifteen years has been Secretary of the lodge in Brighton. He is also a member of the I.O.O.F., both Subordinate Lodge and Encampment, and has filled all the chairs in the first named, and has also represented the lodge in the Grand Lodge.
Mr. and Mrs. Auld are the parents of seven living children: Sarah E., the wife of R. E. Kegan, of Brighton; James R., of Keokuk, Iowa; Aden W., a painter residing in Brighton; Amy, the wife of Charles Rich, of Eldon, Iowa; Rose L., the wife of G. O. Dodge, of Davenport; Colonel L., conductor on the Central Iowa Railway; Mattie, the wife of William Mygatt, of Bay View Station, near Milwaukee, Wis. In politics, Mr. Auld is a stanch Republican, but in early life was a Whig, casting his first Presidential vote for Zachary Taylor. In the local difficulty in South English during the war, in which some of the citizens of that vicinity expressed themselves as being strongly opposed to the war, and proposed to resist the draft, several companies
were organized for the purpose of assisting the Government in maintaining order. In one of these companies Mr. Auld was first Sergeant and afterward a Lieutenant.
A. ANDERSON, Cashier of the Washington County Savings Bank, has been a resident of this county since 1851, coming here with his parents when young. He is a native of Jefferson county, Ohio, born Jan. 9, 1841. His father, John T. Anderson, is a native of Pennsylvania, and his mother of West Virginia. the subject of this sketch is the fourth of family of seven children. HIs literary education was obtained in the public schools of his native State, and his commercial education at Bryant & Stratton's Commercial College. In 1863 he left his father's farm, and embarked in the stock and grain business at Ainsworth, where he continued to reside, and was actively engaged in trade for twenty years. He first formed a partnership with J. C. Luckey, which was continued for three years under the firm name of Luckey & Anderson, after which he associated with himself J. S. McClelland, and embarked in the general mercantile trade. This copartnership continued one year, when Mr. McClelland retired, and a partnership was formed with S. A. White, and for about fifteen years the firm of Anderson & White was the leading one in the village of Ainsworth. It was only dissolved on account of the election of Mr. White Clerk of the Courts of the county, and his removal to Washington. In 1883, having been offered the position of Assistant Cashier in the Washington County Savings Bank, Mr. Anderson sold his store in Ainsworth and moved to Washington to assume the duties of that office. In 1884 he was promoted by the Directors of the institution Cashier, which position he yet holds.
Mr. Anderson and Miss Martha Stretch were united in marriage in Muscatine County, Iowa, Aug. 31, 1869. Two children came to bless their union, Marion F. and George Jay, the latter of whom is deceased. During his residence in Ainsworth there was probably no man who did more to build up the place, and to him is due much of the credit for the fine school building and excellent schools of that place. Since his removal to Washington he has been just as active in advancing the interests of the latter place, and much of the credit is due him for the excellent showing of the Savings Bank.
Religiously, Mr. Anderson is connected with the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which body his wife is also a member. He is also a member of the Masonic fraternity, both of the Blue Lodge and of Cyrus Chapter, R.A.M. Coming to this county a youth of sixteen, he has been thoroughly identified with it for a period of thirty years, and in every position of honor and trust which he has been called upon to fill, he has been faithful to the letter, and now numbers among his friends a host of the good people of Washington County.
JOSIAH JAMES, wagon-maker, Brighton, was born in Hardin county, Ohio, april 28, 1839, and is the son of Josiah and Priscilla (Richards) James, who were the parents of four children, three living: Elijah, of Henry County, Iowa; Margaret, wife of E. C. Upton, of Henry County, Iowa and Josiah. His father died in Ohio, in 1839, and his mother subsequently married William Rogers, and in 1847 moved to Henry County, Iowa. By the last union she had four children, only one of whom is now living: Melissa, the wife of Jacob Beaver, of Henry County, Iowa. Thomas; Sarah, who married Oliver Shutes, and Rebecca, who married John Berry, are deceased. His mother died in Henry County about 1880.
The subject of this sketch was educated in the common schools of Henry County, Iowa, and on the breaking out of the great Rebellion, enlisted in Co. E., 1st Iowa Vol. Cav., and was mustered into the service at Burlington, where they remained a short time and were then sent to Missouri after the rebel General Price. Before the expiration of his three years' service, Mr. James re-enlisted, and received a veteran furlough of thirty days, which he improved by coming home. Returning to camp, he was with the regiment in all its engagements
and campaigns till the close of the war. He was mustered out at Austin, Tex.; and discharged at Davenport, Iowa. On receiving his discharge, he returned to Henry County, where he learned the trade of wagon-maker. While on his veteran furlough, in 1864, he was united in marriage with Miss Martha J. Nason, a native of Henry county, Iowa. By this union there are four childrenMary Belle, Charley D., Edgar E. and Wilbur A.
Mr. James came to this county in 1875, and located in Dutch Creek Township, where he engaged in farming until 1878, when he moved to West Chester and worked at his trade four years, going thence to Lexington, in Cedar Township, where he remained one year on a farm. He then settled in Brighton, and has since continued to reside there, engaged in his trade of wagon-making. He is a member of the G.A.R., and in politics is a Republican.
JOSHUSA STINCHCOMB, residing on section 16, Lime Creek Township, is one of the prominent farmers and stock-raisers of the township. He was born in Fayette County, Pa., Sept. 23, 1826, and is the son of John O. and Sarah (Hoswell) Stinchcomb, both natives of Maryland, the former born Mrch 3, 1782, and the latter Aug. 13, 1783. They were the parents of eleven children, of whom five are yet living: Washington, a resident of Canton, Stark Co., Ohio, and a machinist by trade; Margaret is the widow of William Duer, and a resident of Smith County, Kan.; Achsah, the widow of George Rose, is a resident of Morgan county, Ohio; Elizabeth, the widow of Isaac Leasure, is a resident of Morrison, Ill. The family removed from Maryland to Pennsylvania about the year 1820, and in that State Mr. Stinchcomb rented a farm and followed the occupation of a farmer until 1834, when he moved to Morgan County, Ohio, and bought ninety acres of land, where he remained until his death, March 28, 1873. He was a very liberal man, kind and generous to his family. He had followed school-teaching in Maryland for thirteen years, and was a pioneer of Maine, Pennsylvania and Ohio; he served in the War of 1812. His wife died Dec. 12, 1860. She was a good pious woman.
The early life of our subject was spent upon the farm and attending the common schools of his day, continuing until he was twenty-one years of age. His first work was the scoring and hewing of timber, and working at the carpenter's trade for about two years, and then was employed in a mill, which occupation he followed three years, and then went back to the carpenter work and continued at it two years in Ohio, or until the fall of 1856, when he came to Iowa, teaching school in the winter of 1856-57, and then following carpentering in this State until the spring of 1862, when he purchased 160 acres of land on section 10 and 15, Lime Creek Township, and devoted his entire time to farming. He added to his original purchase until he owned 273 acres, all under a fine state of cultivation, with all the necessary farm buildings. In the fall of 1876 he quit farming and has since lived a retire life, making his home on section 16, Lime Creek Township.
Mr. Stinchcomb was married to Miss Margaret Worm, on the 2d of October, 1852. She was born Dec. 14, 1827, in Muskingum County, Ohio, and is the daughter of William and Elizabeth (Ebert) Worm. They were natives of Baltimore County, Md., the former born May 19, 1782, and the latter April 2, 1787. The father died Oct. 25, 1849, and the mother April 20, 1857. They were the parents of ten children: Catherine, born Dec. 27, 1803, is the widow of George Sower, and is yet living in Muskingum County, Ohio; Mary, born May 14, 1808, is the widow of J. Sowers; Violet, born Nov. 5, 1813, died Jan. 25, 1854; Rachel died March 12, 1806; John E., born Aug. 7, 1816, is a resident of Fairfield County, Ohio; Elizabeth, born Dec. 1, 1819, resides in Muskingum County, Ohio; F. H. A., born Jan. 11, 1824, is a farmer and stock-raiser in Davis County, Iowa; Margaret is the wife of our subject; comfort A., born Dec. 20, 1830, died Sept. 12, 1849. The mother was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
Mr. and Mrs. Stinchcomb are the parents of one child: Sarah E., born Dec. 25, 1853, now the wife of A. L. Palmer, a farmer in Lime Creek
Township. Mr. and Mrs. S. are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He has held various township offices, always takes a part in all public and Church affairs, and in politics is a Republican. Honest and upright in all his dealings, industrious and energetic, he has made all he now has with no other assistance than that of his amiable wife, who shares with him the fruits of their well-spent life.
JAMES WILSON COFFEY, section 14, Lime Creek Township. Among the highly respected citizens of Washington County will be found the subject of this personal sketch. He was born in Pulaski County, Ky., May 10, 1822, and is the son of Lewis M., and Delilah (Turpin) Coffey, the former a native of Stokes County, N.C., born in 1798, and the latter of Pulaski County, Ky., born in 1802. They were the parents of ten children: Nancy, the widow of Robert Jones, resides in Morgan County, Ind.; J. W., the subject of this sketch; Mary A., the wife of John Cook Bettie, deceased; John L., a farmer in Allen County, Kan.; Moses T., a farmer in Morgan County, Ind.; Philip B., a resident of Cass County, Mo.; Delilah, deceased, was the wife of F.M. Hale, of Harrison County, Mo.; Elizabeth was the wife of James Ready, both deceased; R. W., a farmer in Cumberland County, Ill.; Lewis M., deceased. The family left Kentucky in the fall of 1827, and moved to Morgan County, Ind., where they settled upon a farm of 101 acres and made that their home until the death of Mr. Coffey in 1844. He was a flatbed pilot, and each year would take a load of produce down the river to New Orleans. Mr. Coffey was an industrious man, a careful manager, and one who possessed the confidence of all his friends. After her husband's death Mrs. Coffey continued to make the old farm in Indiana her home until her death, which occurred in 1873, at the age of seventy-one years. She was a kind mother, and one who took great pride in her children.
The early life of our subject was spent upon the farm and in attendance upon the common schools until the age of thirteen. He then went to work upon the public canal, remaining at that for three years, and in the spring of 1838 went with his father to New Orleans, and afterward made one trip each year, which took them three or four months each time. Between times he worked upon his father's farm until 1842, when the cholera broke out and they abandoned flatboating. Mr. Coffey was married, on the 11th of December, 1842, to Miss Louisa T. Norman, a native of Tennessee, born June 23, 1826, and the daughter of James and Sarah (Harrison) Norman, the former a native of North Carolina, and the latter of Tennessee. Mr. and Mrs. Coffey are the parents of ten children: Lemuel L.M., born March 6, 1844, at home; John T., born May 23, 1847, was a member of the 27th Indiana Infantry, running away from home to defend his country's flag, and is now a farmer in Clatsop County, Ore.; B. F., born Jan. 28, 1850, and James M., Sept. Sept. 30, 1853, are farmers in Clatsop County, Ore.; Joseph L., born May 19, 1856, is a clerk in the hardware store of B. W. Nicola & Co., of Wellman, Iowa; V. H., born May 30, 1858, is a clerk in a dry-goods house in Astoria, Ore.; P. D., born April 22, 1861, and Sarah D., Feb. 11, 1864, are at home; two died in infancy.
After our subject had abandoned the river, he turned his attention exclusively to farming, and continued to live in Morgan County, Ind., where his children were all born, for a period of thirty-seven years, or until the 9th of October, 1864, when he loaded his family into a wagon and started for Lime Creek Township, Washington Co., Iowa. He had made a trip to this county in 1863, at which time he decided that Iowa was the place for him to live. After his arrival on Oct. 24, 1864, he bought 148 acres on section 14, Lime Creek Township, where he has since continued to reside. He has bought and sold a number of acres since, but his farm is now in fine condition, and is one of the best fenced in Lime Creek Township, all fenced in 20-acre fields.
At the time of the marriage of our subject he had no money and was $43 in debt, but by his own industry and good management he has acquired a fine farm and enough of this world's goods to live comfortably in his old age. He has held various township offices, was Treasurer of the School District,
and Treasurer of the township. He is held in high esteem by all who know him, and is a man who takes an active part in all political and public affairs. Socially he is a member of the A.F. & A.M. Politically, he is a stanch supporter of the principles of the Democratic party.
ELIHU COMPTON, Justice of the Peace, Brighton, is a retired farmer. He was born in Montgomery County, Ohio, Dec. 29, 1812, and is a son of Eli and Rebecca Compton, the former a native of South, and the latter of North Carolina. Eli Compton moved from his native State to Ohio in 1808, in company with his parents, who located near Dayton on the Miami River, where his father improved a farm. Rebecca Reed moved from North Carolina with her parents, James and Mary Reed, who settled near Dayton. They were natives of North Carolina. Her mother died Jan. 18, 1835, and her father, Jan. 12, 1846. Eli Compton and Rebecca Reed became acquainted with each other after their removal to Ohio, and were there subsequently married. They were the parents of eight children: Samuel, deceased; Elihu, the subject of this sketch; Martha, deceased, was the wife of John R. Webb; Rebecca married William Moore; both are now dead; Nancy married James Heath, and both are now deceased; James and Mary died in infancy; Elizabeth is the widow of Peter Kephart, and now resides in Allen County, Ohio.
Elihu Compton was reared upon a farm. When twelve years of age, his father having been engaged by other persons, loaded two teams with goods to trade to the Indians, one of which was placed in Elihu's charge. This was at the time a treaty was made by the Government with the Miami and Pottawatomie Indians in 1826, who then inhabited the country about where Wabash, Ind., now stands. With these Indians Eli Compton traded, the sales being effected near where the city of Wabash now stands. OUr subject says he returned to Wabash in 1884, but could scarcely realize the changes that had been made. Gov. Cass, of Michigan, was one of the Government agents at the time his father was trading with the Indians. He well remembers seeing Gov. Cass dressed in full uniform, and thought him the finest looking man that he ever saw. In 1826, Elihu was engaged in driving ox-teams, hauling produce from Dayton, Ohio, to Ft. Wayne, Ind. He continued to drive oxen until eighteen years of age, when his father bought horse-teams, which he continued to drive over the same country until twenty-two years of age, when he commenced farming. Elihu never attended school until he was twenty-three years of age. He then entered a select school, where he remained about seven weeks. This was all the education he received in school, but by reading and observation, he has since become a well-informed man.
In December, 1836, Mr. Compton was united in marriage with Miss Sarah Johnson, a native of Greene County, Ohio, born May 2, 1812, and daughter of William and Frances Johnson, the former a native of Virginia, and the latter of Maryland. Seven children have been born to them: Francis M., born Dec. 2, 1837; died Sept. 5, 1843; Nancy E., born Feb. 6, 1840, married Joseph Smith, died Oct. 14, 1873; Minerva J., born Sept. 21, 1841, died Jan. 18, 1859; Martha, born May 18, 1843; died Aug. 25, 1846; Johnson R., born June 1, 1845, is a resident of Webster City, Iowa; Hannah E., born april 14, 1847, died in infancy; Sarah M., born April 16, 1851, is the wife of J. I. Isenhart, of Brighton, Iowa. The children were all born in Mercer County, Ohio, where the family lived for many years. The first land owned by Mr. Compton in that county was forty acres. By subsequent purchase he secured a farm of 160 acres, all of which he had well improved. The first cabin that he built was of round poles and was placed together without a single nail. In this cabin the family lived until he was able to build a better house.
In 1845, Mr. Compton was appointed Postmaster of Mercer, Mercer Co., Ohio, receiving his commission from James K. Polk, and held that office for six years, resigning on account of it interfering with his farming. He was also a Justice of the Peace in Mercer County, Ohio, for twelve years. In 1854 he became dissatisfied with his residence in that county, on account of the sulphur water,
and in 1855 sold out and came with his family in a spring wagon to Washington County, Iowa, and bought 160 acres of land in Clay Township, eight acres of which was partially improved. On that farm he continued to reside until 1865, when he sold out and purchased property in Brighton, where he has since continued to reside. He has served about twenty-three years as Justice of the Peace, in addition to which he has filled other county and township offices serving with credit to himself and his constituents. Mrs. Compton is a member of the Baptist Church, and has always taken great interest in Church work. Few men are better known or more universally esteemed than Squire Compton.
NIMROD LEASE, dealer in general merchandise, Crawfordsville, was born in Hampshire County, Fa., and is the son of Henry and Lydia (Cadwallader) Lease, the former of German, and the latter of Welsh origin. The family emigrated from Virginia directly to Washington County, Iowa, in 1850, settling in the then village of Washington. By trade, Henry Lease was a blacksmith, but purchased town property and lands near the village, to which his attention was given. Seven children accompanied them to Washington County: Susan E., the wife of Jacob Sigafoos; Mary A., the wife of Nelson Long; Henry married Mary Baker; William is the husband of Ann Foolan; all were married in Virginia. Our subject, the youngest child, then twenty-one years of age, was the only one unmarried. The eldest son, John, had preceded this small colony, and with his wife, Harriet A. Stewart, had settled in this county in 1846. Near his land, the Lease family made a location, where they continued to reside for several years. The mother died in the autumn of 1865, and the father in 1869, both having lived long enough to see a large family married and well settled.
Nimrod Lease remained with his parents, until his thirtieth year, when his marriage with Mary A. Kurtz was celebrated. Her parents, John and Martha Kurtz, were native of Ohio, who emigrated to this State at an early day, settling in Henry County, where they remained during their lives. They brought with them seven children, three of whom are now residents of this countyMary A. Lease, Martha A. Long, and Henry Kurtz, a farmer of Crawford Township. After his marriage in 1859, Mr. Lease engaged for five years in farming, at that time owning a large amount of land in Bremer County, Iowa. Later this was disposed of, and several tracts of land were purchased in Crawford Township. In 1865 he located in Crawfordsville and opened a general store, since which time he has continuously engaged in the mercantile trade. Twenty-two years of an active business life, coupled with the care and attention in person to the improvements on his farm, which has been supplemented by various other enterprises, have kept his mind alert and brilliant; at the age of fifty-eight, he still manages in a methodical way the largest business conducted by any man in the village.
The first creamery operated in this county was built by Mr. Lease in 1879, and has been under his management and in successful operation to-day. It has a capacity of 1,000 pounds per day, but the average product has been for some time about 250 pounds. Most of his butter is sold in New York and Philadelphia, and in the Eastern markets it has always found a ready sale. This may be considered a successful venture, having been so long conducted under one management, and with the exception of the first year, without loss. The second year a cheese factory was added, which was operated for four years, during which time from 400 to 500 pounds of cheese were manufactured daily. Mr. Lease was also one of the firm composed of J. W. Crawford, R. E. Crawford, J. B. Crawford, N. L. Long, O. H. Schenck, J. B. Crooks, Joseph Sherherd, G. T. Auld, D. C. Campbell and N. Lease, who erected and operated for two years a canning factory, the first of its kind in the county. He was also a large shipper of eggs for two years, and is now a member of the firm of Hise Bros. & Co., of Washington, dealers in eggs and poultry, from which point they have, for months, shipped a carload of eggs per day. He was one of the first dealers and shippers of grain from Crawfordsville,
and also the first dealer in lumber in the village, hauling the lumber by team from Ainsworth. He also enjoys the distinction of erecting and operating the first livery in the village, and yet owns the barn, as well as the Iowa House, conducted by his son-in-law, C. A. Paisley; the Central House, at Winfield, is also his property. He was one of the first Directors of the Burlington & Northwestern Narrow Gauge Railway, and one of its stock-holders.
Nine children have graced the union of Mr. and Mrs. Lease, all born in this county; Margaret, the wife of W. M. Welsh, a farmer of this township; Susan C., the wife of C. A. Paisley; John H., Emma, Joe, Nimrod, Nellie, Richard and William. Mr. Lease is one of the charter members of the Winnemack Lodge No. 445, I.O.O.F., of Crawfordsville, in which he has passed all the chairs, and in which he was at first Past Grand. He is the present Treasurer of the lodge and has helped initiate every member made by the order in this lodge. In all public enterprises Mr. Lease has shown himself a liberal citizen, and with his family, enjoys the greatest confidence of the community in which he resides. As an early settler of the county, and one of the most extensive business men of his town, we are pleased to accord this sketch a deserved place in the PORTRAIT AND BIOGRAPHICAL ALBUM of Washington County, Iowa.