Thomas M. Hawk owns and cultivates a farm of one hundred and fifty five and one half acres situated in Walnut
township, and its neat and thrifty appearance renders it one of the attractive features in the landscape. His birth
occurred in Penn township, Jefferson county, October 14, 1856, his parents being William and Frances (McClure)
Hawk, who were natives of Tennessee. The father came to Jefferson county in 1839, when the greater part of the
state was still wild and unimproved, few settlements having been made beyond the eastern border. He entered forty
acres of land in Penn township and began the arduous task of clearing and improving this, turning the first furrows
in the fields and planting the seeds, which in due time brought forth good harvests. His persistent and intelligently
directed labors brought him success, that enabled him to add to his possessions from time to timed until he owned
five hundred acres, which he continued to cultivate and improve until about a year prior to his death, when he
retired from the farm and took up his abode in Fairfield. His was a long, useful and active life, crowned with
substantial success and the high regard of all with whom he had business or social relations. He died in 1903,
at the age of eighty six years, having for several years survived his wife.
Thomas M. Hawk was reared and educated in his native county and its district school system provided him with his
educational privileges. In the school of experience, however, he has added many valuable lessons. He remianed with
his parents on the home farm and assisted in its development and improvement until he had attained his majority,
when he started out in life independently, giving his attention to the work, to which he had previously been trained.
After renting land for two years his father bought a tract and later he purchased more land in Walnut township.
He at once began improvements and has since cultivated it, having now a valuable farm of one hundred and fifty
five and one half acres lacking in no modern equipment or accessory. He uses the latest improved machinery to facilitate
the work of the fields and has upon his place good barns and outbuildings, furnishing ample shelter for grain and
stock. His methods, too, are practical and produce substantial results.
On February 5, 1881, Mr. Hawk was united in marriage to Miss Sarah Jennison, a daughter of Stephen S. and Mary
(Fenton) Jennison, who were natives of Indiana. Her father became a resident of Wayne county, Iowa, at an early
day and there purchased and improved a farm which he has since continued to cultivate. Her mother, however, has
passed away. Mr. and Mrs. Hawk have become the parents of three children; Rollie' R., now living at home; Minnie,
the wife of G. M. Lesher, a resident of North Dakota; and Ina E., the wife of H. R. Lesher, who is also living
in North Dakota. The wife and mother passed away after a year's illness, on the 16th of August, 1905, her death
being deeply regretted by many friends as well as by her immediate family.
Mr. Hawk holds membership in the Church of God and his political support is given to the democratic party. A life
long resident of Jefferson county, he is well known within its borders and his history is a familiar one to many
of our readers. His life record shows what may be accomplished when energy and determination lead the way. He has
had but little assistance and yet his persistent, earnest labor has enabled him to steadily advance toward the
goal of prosperity, his landed possessions making him one of the substantial citizens of Walnut township.
History of Jefferson County, Iowa
A Record of Settlement, Organizatin,
Progress and Achievement
BY: Charles J. Fulton
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Jefferson County, IA
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