ROBERT R. PLANE.
While many years have come and gone since Robert R. Plane was called from this life, he is yet well remembered
by those who knew him while he was still a factor in the worlds work and who recognized in him the possession of
those qualities which characterize honorable manhood and progressive citizenship. He was a pioneer hardware merchant
of Independence and contributed much to the early commercial development of that city.
His birth occurred in England in June, 1829, and when he was seven years of age he came to the United States with
his parents, who settled in New York state, where they remained for three years. They then journeyed across the
country by team and took up their abode upon a farm in Illinois. Through the period of his early youth Robert R.
Plane was acquiring an education or receiving thorough home training in the work of the fields. When he was seventeen
years of age his father gave him his time and, entering the employ of a merchant at a salary of twelve dollars
per month, he engaged in hauling the goods from Chicago and in assisting in making sales in the store. The following
year his wage was increased to thirteen dollars per month. He remained in that connection for several years, during
which time he carefully and economically saved his earnings. He then purchased land and about the same time he
entered the employ of a brother who was engaged in the hardware business at Belvidere, Illinois, acting as a clerk
there until 1853. In that year he sold his Illinois land, purchased a team and a stock of hardware and drove across
the country to Independence, Iowa. The following year he returned to Illinois and was married, after which he brought
his bride to his new Iowa home.
Mr Plane wedded Emaline Ryder, of Illinois, who died in Independence in early womanhood, leaving four children:
I. C., who is now conducting the hardware business established by his father ; Elmer and Ida, both deceased; and
Purling J., who is a traveling salesman in the hardware trade, his territory being northwestern Iowa. In 1882 Mr.
Plane was again married, his second union being with Miss Julia L. Kinney, a native of New York, who arrived in
Iowa in the spring of 1869 in company with Miss I. S. Tame, with whom she engaged in the millinery and fancy goods
business. She continued in that connection for several years and then became the wife of Mr. Plane. She reared
the younger son of her husband's first marriage, who was only five years of age when Mrs Plane entered the home.
He was a delicate little fellow whom she soon learned to love as a mother. She ever called him her boy and the
deepest affection has always existed between the two.
Mr. Plane from the time of his early arrival in Independence continued in the hardware business until his later
life, when he sold his hardware stock to his son, thus retiring about a year prior to his death. He left the store
building, his residence and a good farm of two hundred and forty acres to his widow. At the time of the great fire
in Independence his store was destroyed and he lost everything, but with unfaltering energy and courage he set
to work to retrieve his possessions and in the course of years became a prosperous merchant.
Mr. Plane was a republican in his political views but never desired to hold office. He devoted his life to his
business and his home and was a most loving and considerate husband and father. He died in 1895, in the faith of
the Methodist Episcopal church, of which he was an active, helpful and consistent member. Mrs. Plane also belongs
to that church and has led an earnest Christian life. She is now seventy five years of age. She has possessed many
accomplishments, including that of painting, and in her younger days she did notably fine fancy work. Since the
spring of 1869 she has lived in Buchanan county and is today one of the best known among the older residents of
Independence, enjoying the high esteem of all with whom she has been brought in contact.
History of Bachanan County, Iowa
And its People
By Harry Church and Katharyn J. Chappell
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Bachanan County, IA
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