Hugh R. Owens, one of the most prominent and progressive citizens of Iowa township, was born on the farm where
his entire life was spent, September 8, 1872. He was the eldest son of Robert E. and Ellen (Roberts) Owens, whose
sketch precedes this. After he had acquired a common school education he entered the Iowa City Commercial College,
from which he graduated in 1893, having completed the course in about half the usual time.
On the 31st of March, 1896, Mr. Owens was married to Miss May Reed of Troy township, and to this union were born
one son, Hugh K., and two daughters, Edith M. and Esther.
From early boyhood Mr. Owens had been accustomed to the work of the farm and the care of the pure bred stock on
his father's place, and on the retirement of his parents to their home near Williamsburg, he and his brother, Evan,
at once took up the business of farming and raising shorthorn cattle on the large farm in Iowa township. As a result
of their efforts, the firm of Owens Brothers has taken a high place among the breeders of high class pure bred
cattle. They have raised and sold shorthorns in large numbers, cattle of their breeding being scattered through
the length and breadth of the land. Square dealing has always been their motto, and every consignment from the
farm, whether by the carload or the single lot, has borne the same high degree of quality and breeding. The recent
sales by Owens Brothers, held at the farm, have been events not only of financial success to themselves, but events
of pleasure and enlightenment to the community as well.
The accident which cost Hugh R. Owens his life occurred at Hilton creek near Marengo, just before daybreak on the
morning of September 25, 1914, when alone in his automobile, unwarned of the danger ahead, he plunged to his cruel
death into the bridgeless stream. His funeral was held the following Sunday, an immense assemblage of sorrowing
friends following his body to its final resting place in Oak Hill cemetery near Williamsburg.
The life of Hugh R. Owens was an inspiration to those about him. His business capacity was truly remarkable. He
was a firm believer in keeping up with the times and his farm was equipped with modern machinery and laborsaving
devices. He bent his energy to the improvement of his home and the betterment of conditions about him, and though
stricken in the high noon of life, he had accomplished more than the average man does when he reaches the sundown
of his days. Throughout his busy life he never lost an opportunity to do a neighborly kindness, or help in time
of need. His death is a most deplorable loss to the community, and he went to his God with a clean record of an
unselfish and well spent life.
History of Iowa County, Iowa
And its People
By: James C. Dinwiddie
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Iowa County, IA
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