Although thirty years have elapsed since William McLaughlin passed away on his farm in Hanover township, there
are many in this vicinity who still remember his sterling qualities of character and his business progressiveness
and who respect the substantial contributions which he made to the agricultural development of this part of the
state. He was one of the pioneers in Allamakee county, coming here in 1856, and in the work of progress and expansion
he bore an active and honorable part through the years, becoming known as one of the substantial and representative
farmers of his township.
William McLaughlin was born in Ireland in 1820 and he spent his youth and early manhood in his native country.
In 1852 he came to America, and settling in New York, followed railroad contracting for a few years. In 1856 he
came to Iowa and made his home in Allamakee county in pioneer times. After a year he bought land on Bear creek,
Hanover township, and from that time until his death continued to engage in fanning, success coming as a natural
result of his energy, ability and enterprise. Pioneer conditions prevailed throughout the county at the time of
his location here, but the hardships and privations of this life were met with confidence and courage. From time
to time he bought more land, his last purchase being a fine tract on the Iowa river upon which he continued to
reside until his death. He passed away on the 14th of May, 1883, and since that time his wife and one of his sons
have operated the homestead which comprises four hundred and twenty acres lying on sections 4, 3 and 9. They have
ably carried forward the work which Mr. McLaughlin began in pioneer times and have today a productive, well improved
and well equipped farm, evidencing everywhere the many years of care and labor which have been spent upon it. Mrs.
McLaughlin and her son operate this as a stock farm, making a specialty of raising and selling high grade cattle,
horses and hogs.
Mr. and Mrs. McLaughlin became the parents of seven children. William makes his home in Ryder, North Dakota. Margaret
is teaching school. Katherine is a resident of Minneapolis, Minnesota. John is engaged in farming in Hanover township.
He married Miss Mary O'Meara, a native of Allamakee county, and they have seven children: Donald, born in 1900;
Mary Bernice, born in 1905; John Bertrand and Dorothy Marie, twins, born in 1907; James Melvin, 1909; Ralph Edmond,
1911; and Genevieve J., 1913. Thomas, the fifth child born to Mr. and Mrs. McLaughlin, lives upon the homestead.
Josephine resides in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Celia, the youngest, became the wife of William Collins of this county.
Mr. McLaughlin was a devout member of the Roman Catholic church and was a democrat in his political beliefs, taking
an active interest in public affairs. He served for two terms as assessor of his township and proved able, conscientious
and reliable in the discharge of his duties. He was a man of many sterling traits of character, trustworthy in
business, progressive in citizenship and faithful to all ties and obligations of life and thus it was that in his
passing Allamakee county lost one of her most valued and useful citizens.
Past and Present of Allamakee County, Iowa
A Record of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievemant
By: Ellery M. Hancock
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Allamakee County, IA
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