Mower County, Minnesota

Group File 04


Samuel Carll

b: 1811

Samuel Carll, a native of Maine, moved to New York State in 1812. In 1869 he came west and purchased a half section from R. F. Leighton in Udolpho township.

He then returned to New York State, and two years later came back to his farm in Mower county, bringing with him his son, B. F. Samuel Carll died in 1878, and his wife, Jane Drake, passed away in 1901.


NOTE: Samuel was buried in Lansing Cemetery.



Sven Anderson

b: 1842

Sven Anderson, of Austin, garage and monument man, was born in Sweden, June 7, 1842, son of Samuel and Mary (Gustafson) Anderson, who lived and died in the old country.

Sven came to America in 1869, located in Austin, and worked a few weeks on the railroad. Then he worked out for a time farming and in 1870 rented a farm in Austin township for one year. Then he worked for the McCormick Harvester Company five years, and afterward purchased a farm in Marshall township, this county. On this farm he remained eight years and then came to Austin, and started dealing in machinery. In 1896 he started in the machine business for himself, and later took up the sale of monuments with his son, John H. Anderson, in which business he has been very successful.

In 1910 he opened a garage and buys, rents and sells several makes of automobiles. Mr. Anderson is a Republican and while in Marshall township was supervisor of the township for a time.

He was also deputy sheriff for six years. The subject of this sketch has allied himself with the B. P. 0. E., the M. W. A. and the Masonic order, in which latter body he belongs both to the Blue lodge and to the chapter.

He was married January 13, 1864, to Anna C. Anderson, and to this union have been born six children- Albert, John, Axel, who died aged 24; George E., the assistant postmaster at Austin; Arthur, Herbert and Esther E., the latter being Mrs. Arthur Carlson. The family faith is that of the Lutheran church.




Freeman A. Carll

b: 1842

Freeman A. Carll, a well-known citizen of Lansing, was born in Lyons, Wayne county, New York, in 1842, son of Benjamin and Martha Ann (Hamlin) Carll, both parents being natives of the town of New London, Me. The parents came west in 1863, and located in Lansing, keeping the hotel three years, after which they purchased the Timothy Andrews farm in Udolpho. Freeman A. enlisted in the 2nd Minnesota Cavalry, November 1, 1863, and was discharged D ecember 5, 1865.

After leaving the army he located on a farm, and now has a well-tilled place in Lansing township.. He belongs to the Masonic order and to the G. A. R. The subject of this sketch was married to Eliza E., daughter of Augustus and Elmira (Crouch) Carll, and five children blessed their union: Louis R. (deceased); Edith I., now Mrs. G. W. Eastman, of Austin; Edna G., now Mrs. Wallace Gregson, of Austin; Lindorf P. and Ernest W., living in Lansing.




Carl A. Carlson

Carl A. Carlson, now deceased, for many years a foundry owner in Austin, was born in Sweden, married there, and came to America in 1870. They at once located in Austin, where for a Robert Collins, a popular farmer of Mower county, has a fine farm, of which eighty acres is in section 25, Windom township, and forty acres in section 30, Marshall township. He has a pleasant home, good barns and modern machinery.




Robert Collins

b: 1856

Robert Collins was born March 3, 1856, in Illinois. When young he was taken by his parents to Janesville, Wis., three years later to Iowa county, Wisconsin, and was there reared and educated. After living there twelve years he came to Windom township and purchased his present farm, since which date he has continued in agricultural pursuits.

Mr. Collins is a Democrat in politics and attends the Catholic Church. He was married June 6, 1877, to Katherine Madden, daughter of William Madden and Bridget (Larkin) Madden, both natives of Ireland, who came to this country in 1842 and first settled in Freeport, Ill. Mr. and Mrs. Robert Collins have six children: William, of Nelson county, North Dakota; Michael, at home; Robert, of Nelson county, North Dakota; Thomas and Frances, at home, and Mary, a teacher at Campbell, Minn.




R. A. Carmichael

b: 1859

R. A. Carmichael, jailer of Mower county, and deputy sheriff under Nicholas Nicholson, was born in Mercer county, Pennsylvania, August 25, 1859, son of John and Eleanor (Fowler) Carmichael, of Scotch and English descent, the former dying in 1881 and the latter in 1859. R. A. received his early education in the public schools and then took a course-in the State Normal school at Edinborough, Pa. He then started teaching at the age of eighteen years, but two years later, on account of his father's health, and his desire to be with him, he gave up teaching and took a course in the Eastman Business College, at Poughkeepsie, N. Y.

Then he returned home and took charge of the home farm until April, 1884, after which he went to Schuyler, in Colfax county, Nebraska, and engaged in breeding and selling horses. The following year he returned to Pennsylvania and took up work as a carpenter for the Standard Oil Company, at Oil City, Pa. In October, 1886, he came west, worked on a construction crew for the C., M. & St. P. at Austin and Minneapolis two years, and then on construction work for the Soo line from Minneapolis to Sault Ste. Marie for a time.

After a short trip east, he again came to Austin in January, 1891, and worked as a carpenter until 1894. Then he was appointed on the police force, and served eight years. January 1, 1905. he assumed his present duties. Mr. Carmichael is a Republican in politics, and belongs to the A. O. U. W. and the Austin Commercial Club.

He was married September 16, 1881, to Anna M. McConnell, who died January 5, 1885. One son, J. Dudley, was born July 22, 1882, and died December 26, 1884, both he and his mother succumbing to black diphtheria at Schuyler, Neb. Mr. Carmichael was married the second time, January 29, 1891, to Mary E. Adams, of Austin, and this union has resulted in two children: IH. Marcella, June 27, 1901, and Mildred E., born October 12, 1902. The family residence is at 108 North Chatham street.




Patrick H. Carr

b: 1851

Patrick H. Carr, for a decade and a half the justice of the peace in Adams village, is a prominent man in his vicinity and well fitted for the office with which -he has been honored by his fellow citizens. He was born in Rutland, Vermont, March 8, 1851, son of John and Mary (Stanton) Carr, natives of County Mayo, Ireland.

In early youth he learned the carpenters' trade and followed this at Adams and several other places. In 1883 he was in charge of a large bridge crew for Winston Bros., contractors for the Northern Pacific, at Missoula, Mont. He subsequently followed carpentering, contracting and bridge building continuously until 1895, when he was elected justice of the peace in the village of Adams. In this capacity he has served continuously, with the exception of one term, since 1895.

He is also engaged successfully in the real estate and insurance business. Mr. Carr has been financier of the A. O. U. W. for many years, with much credit.

The subject of this sketch was married at Austin, November 26, 1875, to Lyda Bodine, of that city. She died February 21, 1880, at Sumner, Iowa, leaving one son, Benjamin J., born November 22, 1876. Benjamin joined the United States army in 1898 and is still in the service. During his service in the Philippines he acted in the commissary department. Patrick H. Carr is a Democrat in politics and a Catholic in religion.




Luman D. Carter

b: 1841

Luman D. Carter, for many years a resident of Lyle township and village, and now a resident of Austin township, has been a prominent man in the county, and has worthily and ably filled county, township and village office. He was born near Montreal, Canada, March 7, 1841, son of John A. and Charlotte (Phelps) Carter, of New England birth, and French and English ancestry. He came to the United States with his parents in 1854, lived in Burlington, Wis., and in September, 1859, at the age of eighteen years came to Austin township.

After arriving here he attended the Austin public schools, and lays credit to the claim of being the oldest man living in the county who received his education in Mower county schools. He taught school for a year and then enlisted in Company B, Second Minnesota Cavalry, serving until mustered out, December 24, 1865. During a part of this time he did service on the frontier against the Indians. He was confined for a time in a hospital at Sauk Center as the result of an injury to his foot, caused by a runaway accident.

In 1865 he returned to Mower county and took up farming in Lyle township, where he purchased 160 acres. To this tract he added from time to time until he owned 320 acres, following farming in Lyle township, and dividing his place of residence between the township and village until 1891, when he removed to Austin, where he lived nine years.

In 1900 he purchased his present home, prettily located on the banks of the Red Cedar river near Varco station. He rents out his land and is enjoying the rest that his many years of hard toil well deserves. Mr. Carter is a Republican in politics. He served nearly three years as deputy sheriff of Mower county; was village recorder of Lyle for one year; mayor of Lyle village one year; justice of the peace in Lyle township several terms and assessor of Lyle village and township for fourteen years.

He belongs to the Masonic order and to the G. A. R. The subject of this sketch was married September 23, 1863, to Mary E. Burgess, daughter of Jonathan Burgess, who came to Lyle township in 1861. Mr. and Mrs. Carter have been blessed with seven children: Charles L., Edward F., Carrie, Minnie, Orel L., Nellie M., and Edith. Charles L. is a manufacturer, living in Fort Dodge, Iowa; Edward F. is a telegraph operator in Mojara, Cal.; Carrie is the wife of John J. Ingledrum, a real estate dealer in South Bend., Ind.; Minnie is the wife of Edward DeGraff, a jeweler, of LeRoy, Minn.; Oral L., a former teacher, is the wife of Fred Lewis, a traveling salesman out of Austin; Nellie M. is the wife of John Lewis, of Austin; Edith is the wife of W. J. Tyler, of Coeur d'Alene, the editor of the Journal in that place.

The family faith is that of the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. Carter has many recollections of the early days in this state. In the spring of 1863, as he often tells with relish, he rented a piece of land in section 27, Austin township, before enlisting in the army.

When he left for the frontier he gave his father charge of the matter and requested him to dispose of the wheat which in harvest time was to come to him for the rental of the land. His father had the wheat threshed, and at a cost of thirty cents a bushel hauled to Winona, where it brought but forty cents per bushel. This, Mr. Carter declares, was his last experience at renting land.




John A. Carter

John A. Carter was born in Vermont, of French extraction, and went to Canada as a boy. There he married Charlotte Phelps, a native of New Hampshire, of English descent, who was also taken to Canada as a child. They came to the United States in 1854, located in Burlington, Wis., and there remained until the fall of 1859, when they came to Minnesota and located in Austin township, at the place then known as Cedar City.

The following spring they moved to section 27, and in 1861 bought forty acres of land in section 29. Later they sold out and took up their residence with their son Dan in Lyle township, John A. passing away in 1898 and his wife in 1892.




William M. Catherwood

William M. Catherwood, one of the pioneers of southern Minnesota, came west in 1857, and located in the village of Sumner, in Freeborn county. He took up a claim and farmed for many years, coming to Austin in 1880. He died in 1890. Mr. Catherwood was a man of more than usual intelligence and was a mathematician of prominence, being considered an authority in several of the more advanced branches of this science.

He was also a veteran of the Civil War, having served in the Second Minnesota Cavalry. William M. Catherwood married Elizabeth Lowry, and to this union were born two sons, Thomas L. and Samuel D. Mrs. Catherwood, nee Elizabeth Lowry, was born near Indianapolis, Ind., daughter of Rev. Samuel G. Lowry, D. D., and Marguerite J. Hannah, his wife.

Dr. Lowry spent the years of his active ministry in Indiana, but in his declining years lived in Freeborn county, this state. He settled in Indiana in 1825, and there raised a family of eleven children, four by his first wife and seven by his second. The latter mentioned are Elmira, Elizabeth, Felicia, Alfred, Esther (deceased), Annie and Leander.

Dr. Thomas Catherwood, oldest son of Mr. and Mrs. William M. Catherwood, married Jennie De Wolf, and they have three children: Baird, Dorothy and Virginia. Samuel D. Catherwood, second son of Mr. and Mrs. William I. Catherwood, married Gertrude Sherwood, and they have three children: Josephine, Catherine and Roger. The revolutionary ancestor of the Lowry family was Rev. Samuel Doak, the first president of Washington College, Tennessee.




Guttorm Olsen Engen

Guttorm Olsen Engen came to Mower County in the spring of 1855. He lost the farm about 1862 because he couldn’t keep up the payments. Guttorm and his wife, Aase had a son named Levor who was born in 1859 but died some time later, before 1870. He may have been buried at Red Oak Grove Cemetery, but the records for those early years were very poor.

Their other children were: Guro, Aase, Arne, Ole, Oline, Christian, and Ingeborg (my great grandmother).

The family stayed in this area up until about 1877 when they moved to the northern part of the Red River Valley.

This photo of Guttorm and Aase Engen was taken about 1860.

Both Guttorm and Aase were from Nes Hallingdal Norway. They were married at Luther Valley Wisconsin in 1851.

Guttorm Olsen Engen was my great-great-grandfather.

      John Wasylow



Welcome Chandler

b: 1807

Welcome Chandler, a pioneer, settled in Austin in 1857. He was a native of the Green Mountain state, born in the town of London, January 11, 1807. When he was but twelve years of age his parents emigrated to Canada and settled at Raughmont, Province of Quebec, where he grew to manhood.

When he was twenty years of age he left home and settled in Shepard county, Province of Quebec, and was one of the first settlers in the town of Milton, where he purchased government land, from which he cleared the heavy timber, and where he resided until 1857, when he sold out, and with his family joined his son, David L., in Mower county, Minnesota.

He purchased land in section 32, Austin township, and improved a farm of eighty acres, adding to this tract and continuing general farming until his death, December 15, 1880. His wife, Amy Phelps, whom he married in Canada, but who was born in Vermont, died May 12, 1883.




George Chandler

b: 1845

George Chandler, a successful farmer of Austin township, was born in Shepard county, Quebec, Canada, June 28, 1845, son of Welcome and Amy (Phelps) Chandler, the pioneers. He was brought to Mower county by his parents at the age of twelve years, here attended school, grew to manhood and assisted his father on the farm. In 1873 he made a trip to California and then to Oregon, spending five months, after which he returned to Mower county and accepted a clerkship in Austin.

In 1878 he engaged in the grocery trade for a short time, but sold out and resumed farming. He bought ninety-one acres and took eighty acres of railroad land in section 21, Austin township, and broke it and improved it. Mr. Chandler has been town clerk for fifteen years and votes independently. Being an earnest church worker he has been closely identified with the growth of the Methodist faith in this locality.

He has been a steward and trustee, class leader, Bible class teacher and Sunday school superintendent, and contributes liberally of time and money to the Christian cause. He is a stockholder in the Tri-State Telephone Company and in the Northwestern Portland Cement Company, of Mason City, Iowa. The subject of this sketch was married June 4, 1878, to Florence Amelia Brown, and to this union have been born three children: Mabel F., Edith B. and G. Ernest.




Stephen Chandler

b: about 1840

Stephen Chandler was born in Canada, and was married in Austin to Abigail Mehatable Richardson. They came to Lyle township at an early date, and there their daughter, Lania, now Mrs. Frank P. Dawes, was born, March 28, 1862. In that same year, Stephen Chandler joined the Union army, served in several important engagements, and was finally captured and imprisoned in Andersonville, where he was starved to death by his cruel captors.

His widow came to Austin later and was married to I. J. B. Wright.




William Christie

b: 1844

William Christie, of Austin, has served as chairman of the boards of county commissioners of two counties, and is now serving in that capacity in Mower county. He was born in Highgate, Franklin county, Vermont, March 24, 1844, son of Adam and Mary (O'Heare) Christie, who brought him to Wisconsin in 1855.

In October, 1864, the subject of this sketch came to Minnesota and started farming, purchasing a quarter section of his own in 1870, located in Oakland township. In 1898 he came to Austin and engaged in his present business. Mr. Christie was assessor of Oakland township in Freeborn county twenty years, and also served as town treasurer, town supervisor and clerk of his school district.

In 1884 he was elected chairman of the board of county commissioners of Freeborn county and served with credit in that capacity for six years. In the fall of 1892 he was elected to the legislature and served one term. In 1904 he was elected county commissioner of Mower county for a four-year term and was reelected in 1908. Four years he has served as chairman of the board.




Edward D. Claggett

b: 1863

Edward D. Claggett, of Austin, the southern Minnesota and northern Iowa agent for Hamm's Brewing Company, was born in Oshkosh, Wis., March 8, 1863, going to Waupon, Wis., when very young, moving with his family to Brown county, Minnesota, at the age of fourteen years.

After attaining manhood's estate he opened a livery at Princeton, Mille Lacs county, this state, and conducted it for ten years. In 1896 he was elected sheriff of that county and held the position eight years, in the meantime serving the city of Princeton as marshal for six years. In the winter of 1905 he moved to St. Paul, served as sergeant-at-arms at the first session of the legislature held in the new capitol, and then went on the road two years for a St. Paul wholesale house.

April 20, 1907, he came to Austin and took up the duties of his present position. He belongs to the B.P.0.E., the K. of P., and the I.0.O.F., as well as to the Austin Commercial Club and the Austin and Mower County Automobile Club. The subject of this sketch was married in April, 1890, and to this union one daughter, Edna M., was born.




William Franklin Clay

b: 1849

William Franklin Clay, one of Austin's aldermen, has the excellent and unusual record of having been in the railroad service for over forty years. He was born in Gardner, Me., April 15, 1849, son of William A. and Sarah (Douglass) Clay. He came to Minnesota with his parents in 1856, and there received his education.

He first started railroad work at Austin in 1868. After working about the station for a while he was appointed yardmaster, and later became a conductor. He was conductor of the construction train that was used in the building of the short line between St. Paul and Minneapolis, and for a number of years he was passenger conductor on the Southern Minnesota division.

At the time of his retirement, in June, 1908, he had been in the employ of the railroad just forty years and eleven days. Ie is a member of the K. of P. and of the B. P. 0. E., as well as of the Order of Railway Conductors. In 1910 he was elected alderman from the third ward. Mr. Clay is a Republican. By his first wife, Emma Fenton, he has two children: William D., now of Tacoma, ash., and Hattie B., now Mrs. Bert Fitch, of Barber, Mont.

By his second wife, Ida Bowen, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph T. Bowen, of Austin, he has had three children. Guy lives at home. Rex died from injuries received while in the employ of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railway Company, and Frank was drowned in the Cedar river while skating. The family faith is that of the Episcopal church.




William A. Clay

b: 1827

William A. Clay, now deceased, was at one time an Austin lumberman. He was born in Maine, in 1827, and there married Sarah Douglass. He came to Stillwater in 1856, and engaged in lumbering in Washington county, owning a large mill.

In the middle sixties he engaged in the lumber business in Austin. Afterwards he again returned to Stillwater, and was interested in lumbering and surveying the remainder of his life, dying March 3, 1896. His wife died at Willow Creek, Wis., October 26, 1895.




Charles Henry Coats

b: 1829

Charles Henry Coats, one of the pioneer residents of Mower county, who has contributed much to its upbuilding, was born in McKane county, Pennsylvania, January 1, 1829. He received his education in the public schools of his native county and in an academy at Cowdasport, Pa., after which he assisted his father in the lumber business for a time, the business being closed out shortly afterward.

Later he removed to Wisconsin and conducted a hotel and general mercantile business until 1857, when he came to Mower county and located in Brownsdale, where he kept the hotel, succeeding E. J. Stimson, and conducted a general dry goods store, having H. E. Anderson as a partner a part of the time.

In 1868 he came to Austin, with a view to opening a railroad eating house, but these plans did not mature, and he devoted his time largely to purchasing furs, a vocation he had also followed in Wisconsin and in Brownsdale. For a short time Mr. Coats engaged as a traveling salesman for Farnham & Lovejoy, lumber dealers, of Minneapolis, this beginning a connection which lasted in all twelve years. Soon after he engaged with them he became a partner, and the firm established a shingle mill at Minneapolis, under the firm name of Farnham, Lovejoy & Co., Mr. Coats being the silent member of the firm.

After his retirement from this firm he came back to Austin, where he had maintained his home. Here he looked after his real estate interests for a time. He was also manager for some years of the Wasioja Stone Company. This quarry supplied the stone for the Chicago Great Western bridge at St. Paul, for the George A. Hormel plant at Austin, and for many other important structures. Of late years Mr. Coats has practically retired from active life.

He was married January 8, 1856, in Wisconsin, to Mary Wheeler, a native of Westfield, Chautauqua county, New York. They were married as the result of a visit to the then AIary Wheeler to a sister in Wisconsin, where Mr. Coats met her. Levi and Safrona (Chapin) Coats, parents of Charles Henry Coats, were natives of New York, locating in Pennsylvania in the early days, where Levi followed lumbering, rafting, etc., on the Alleghany River. Later they removed to Wisconsin, where Levi died in 1871. His wife afterward came to Austin and died at the age of eighty-nine years.




W. F. Cobb, M. D.

b: 1847

W. F. Cobb, M. D., physician and surgeon, of Lyle, has taken an active part in the official and private life of Mower and Mitchell counties, and has attained an enviable position among the medical fraternity of this portion of Minnesota and Iowa. In the medical world he is a member of the American, Minnesota State, Mower County, Mitchell County and Austin Flint Cedar Valley Medical associations, having been president of the Mower County association and both president and treasurer of the Mitchell County association. He has been county coroner of Mitchell county and served fifteen years as secretary of the school board of Mona.

He has been mayor of Lyle, has served six years as president of the Lyle school board; is president of the Lyle Telephone Company, has been local surgeon for the Illinois Central for over thirty years, and is medical examiner for numerous standard insurance companies as well as of a number of fraternal insurance orders. W. F. Cobb was born in Maine, June 14, 1847, son of Joel and Abigail E. (O'Brien) natives of Maine who after living in Wisconsin for a time came to Iowa and lived in Mona until Joel died in 1877, after which Abigail E. returned to Maine where she ended her days.

The subject of this sketch received the usual preliminary education, and then entered the University of Wisconsin in 1865, graduating in 1870. In the fall of the latter year he entered the Chicago Medical College, and was graduated, after the requisite hospital and dispensary practice, in 1874. He then started practice in Mona, remained until 1895, and then came to Lyle, where he has a wide practice in village and country.

April 30, 1871, he married Abbie C. Mason, of Rutland, Wis., daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Warner Mason, both now deceased. This union has -been blessed with four children: Edith A., Edna M., Ethel M. and Enid H. Edith A. is the wife of L. O. Olson, station agent for the C., M. & St. P. at Northfield, Minn. Niles C. Putnam is the husband of the second daughter, Edna M. Ethel M., after teaching school six years, studied domestic science in the Thomas Normal Training school at Detroit, Mich., and is now attending the Stout Training School at Menominee, Wis. Enid H. is a telephone operator at Lyle. Dr. Cobb is a Republican, a high degree Mason, and a member of various leading fraternities. He attends the First Congregational Church of Lyle, of which he is a deacon and church collector.




Charles F. Cook

b: 1866

Charles F. Cook, state senator from Mower county and former mayor of Austin, was born in the city where he still resides, December 24, 1866. The public schools of Austin afforded him his early education, these advantages being supplemented with a course in the Eastman Business College, at Poughkeepsie, N. Y.

His first practical business experience was in his father's hardware store. In 1888 he went west to Seattle, Wash., where he remained two years, clerking in a hardware store. After returning to Austin, he engaged in the insurance business, in which he has continued to the present time, being now president and manager of the Austin Mutual Hail Insurance Company, of Minnesota.

In politics he is an independent Democrat. He was alderman from the first ward of Austin two years and served as mayor from 1903 to 1906. In November, 1910, he was elected to represent Mower county in the state senate, and his record has justified' the confidence of his fellow citizens. Mr. Cook belongs to the B. P. O. E., the M. W. A., the C. of H., the K. of P. and the Austin Commercial Club, being one of the first organizers of the latter society.

In 1885 Senator Cook enlisted in Co. G, Second Infantry, M. N. G., and has been captain since 1906, having received his commission from Governor John A. Johnson. Much credit is due him for the high standard of excellence and discipline which he has enforced. The subject of this sketch was married April 8, 1896, to Julia E. Wood, of Berne, N. Y., and they have two boys, John Alden and Charles Carpenter. The family faith is that of the Congregational church.




John F. Cook

b: 1823

John F. Cook, one of the early real estate dealers of Austin, was born in Malone, N. Y., May 13, 1823, son of the Rev. Stephen Cook, a clergyman in the Empire state in the period following the Revolution, and first pastor of the Congregational church at Austin. John F. was twelve years of age when his parents removed from Malone, and with them he subsequently lived in various places in his native state. As a young man he was engaged in various occupations, working for a time at Clintonville, N. Y., and later at Peru, N. Y., where he began his career as an office boy in a large retail store, and rapidly advanced till he became an equal partner in the business.

Subsequently he went to Iowa, and during the construction of the Illinois Central through that state was engaged in railroading and in the mercantile business, being located at Waterloo and subsequently at Independence. Mr. Cook came first to Austin in 1854, but did not remain. He returned in 1856 and purchased land around Austin, and owned an undivided one-fourth interest in the original town site.

He remained here about two years, retaining his interest in a number of mercantile establishments in Iowa. He sold his interests there and returned to Austin in 1864, taking up the real estate business. He was Austin's mayor in 1870 and again in 1874. He was an active business man and a public-spirited citizen. He died at his home in Austin, December 2, 1892. The subject of this sketch married Addie E. Carpenter, and to this union three children were born: Charles F., Addie and John F.




Rev. Stephen Cook

b: 1796

Rev. Stephen Cook was born in Vermont in 1796, but grew up in northern New York after he was two years old. He was ordained at the age of thirty-eight. In 1856 he came to Austin and a year later organized the first church here, with a membership of fifteen. In March, 1860, while laboring in a revival at Oakland, he was stricken with paralysis. Six months later when partially recovered he preached for six months again.

He died of a final stroke of paralysis on October 12, 1864. He was married at Malone, N. Y., in 1819, to Jenette Wyse, who shared and assisted him in his labors and survived him over a year. They had four children. The oldest, William W., born in 1820, was long Austin's chorister and superintendent of Sunday schools, and died of paralysis August 26, 1867. The second, James N., born September 21, 1821, studied at Oberlin for the ministry till his eyesight failed six months before he would have graduated.

He was a deacon in the Congregational church at Austin from its organization till his death, September 12, 1886. The third, John F., was born May 13, 1823, became a successful merchant and owner of real estate in Austin and vicinity. The youngest, Julia A., born in 1826, married Dr. J. N. Wheat.




John Cotter

b: 1843

John Cotter, retired farmer, now living in Austin, was born in Ireland, January 14, 1843, son of John and Johanna (Meade) Cotter, and came to this country in 1852, accompanied by his mother and two sisters. The trip was made on a sailing vessel, and all who took that particular voyage remember the long eleven months spent on the way.

The Cotter party landed at Boston and from there went to Manchester, N. H., where they remained six years. During that time the subject of this sketch worked in the woolen mills. Afterward the family came west, locating in Adams, Wis., where John Cotter spent his time in farming.

In 1865 he came to Freeborn county, and from then until 1908 carried on farming operations, acquiring three fine farms in Oakland township. He now lives in retirement in Austin. John Cotter married Katherine Keneven, daughter of Cornelius and Katherine (Collins) Keneven, and to this union ten children have been born: Arthur (deceased), John, Albert, Frank A., Leo J., Theresa, Maurice C., Esther and Roy J.




Ralph P. Crane

b: 1887

Ralph P. Crane, lumberman, of Austin, was born in this city April 21, 1887, son of Frank I. and Sylvia (Pettibone) Crane, the pioneers. He received his education in the Austin schools, and graduated from the Austin high school in 1905, afterward taking courses at Carleton College, Northfield; the University of Minnesota, at Minneapolis, and the Cornell University, at Ithaca, N. Y., taking law studies in the latter institution.

In July, 1909, he took up the lumber business in Austin with his father, and at the time of the latter's death took full charge of the business. While at college he was admitted to the fellowship of the Alpha Delta Phi, one of the Greek letter fraternities, and since then he has allied himself with the Masonic order. He is president of the Austin and Mower County Automobile Club and also a member of the Austin Commercial Club.




Frank Irving Crane

b: 1848

Frank Irving Crane, now deceased, was one of the well-known citizens of Austin, and well deserved the honor and esteem in which he was held. He was born in Sharon, Medina county, Ohio, September 26, 1848, and lived there until 1863, when his father, William A. Crane, sold his homestead on which he had resided for thirty years and came to Minnesota.

The family came across the lake to Milwaukee, and from there came to this state in an emigrant wagon. All of the family were present except Eugene, who left the party at Madison, Wis., to go to Ann Arbor to continue his law studies. The party crossed the line between Iowa and Minnesota on Frank's fifteenth birthday.

The Crane family spent the winter of 1863 with Frank's uncle, William Chatfield, then living near Spring Valley. In the spring they came to Austin, reached here March 16, 1864, located in the log house on the farm that is now the property of the Oakwood Cemetery Association and in 1865 built the brick house which still stands to the west of the cemetery. Frank worked on the farm and attended district school.

In 1872 he joined his brother, Eugene B. Crane, now of Minneapolis, and worked with him as appraiser of Northern Pacific lands, and later attended a business college in Minneapolis. From there he entered the old Mower County Bank to learn more of business methods.

In 1873 he went to work for William Richards, father of Mrs. Lafayette French, who conducted a lumber yard near the present C., M. & St. Paul station. Bray & French at that time also had a lumber business here, near the corner of Franklin and Water streets.

In 1876 Mr. Crane succeeded Bray & French, and continued in the lumber business until the time of his death. Mr. Crane took a prominent part in all public movements, belonged to the old Board of Trade and the Booster Club, was a member of the Board of Education, was appointed on the first Library Board of the city, and was its president from its organization until his death. One of his most distinguished services was as mayor.

He was elected in 1896, and it was due to his efforts that the finances of the city were put in a greatly improved condition. So great was the favor with which his official acts met that he was re-elected without opposition in 1897. He was a high degree Mason, and also belonged to the Elks.

The subject of this sketch was married March 14, 1880, to Sylvia Pettibone, of Bainbridge, Ohio. Mr. Crane and his wife were born within forty miles of each other, but never met until she came to Austin to visit her sister, Mrs. H. H. Kent. To them were born four children: Leah, Ralph, Clara and Florence. Mr. Crane lived in Austin from 1864 until the time of his death in 1910, a period of forty-six years, and his mind was a storehouse of first-hand knowledge of local history. Few events happened here in the half century of which he had no mental record. He had a wide acquaintance in his home town, his county and surrounding towns.

He knew and called his friends by name in his fraternal fashion, and never forgot them. One needed to go about with him to realize the number of friends who gave him hearty greeting wherever he went. His hospitality was genuine and extended alike to rich and poor. His keen, practical mind gave him business sagacity and a cool judgment to discriminate between the real and the sham, while his warm heart taught him the worth of men and helped him to forget their failings.




Rev. Alfred Cressy

b: 1838

Rev. Alfred Cressy was born in England April 29, 1838. In the fall of 1856 he and his wife, Hannah Phelps, came by team to Lyle, where Mrs. Cressy's parents had moved the previous spring.

He preempted a claim, but sold a part of it and traded the rest for an eighty in Austin. He began studying for the ministry in Austin, and afterwards went to Hamline University, then at Red Wing, for a four years' course. He had a long and useful career as a clergyman and now lives in retirement in Austin.




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