Osa Butcher is devoting his life to farming and stock raising in Swan township, where he owns a farm of two
hundred and two and a half acres on section 25. His business interests are carefully conducted, for he knows that
industry is the basis of all honorable success.
Marion county numbers him among her native sons, his birth having occurred October 25, 1869, on the farm which
is now his home, his parents being John and Celia (Ballard) Butcher, who came to this county at an early date and
were here married. His great grandfather, John Butcher, was one of the founders of the noted Wade & Butcher
Company, razor manufacturers. He was an expert mechanic and early made razors by hand.
The father of our subject was born in Ireland, March to. 1823, not far from the city of Dublin, and he came to
America in his teens. After living in Ohio for a time he removed to Iowa in 1841, when eighteen years of age, and
for three years was a resident of Wapello county, his home being near Eddyville, where for a time he engaged in
merchandising. In 1844 he came to Marion county, which was then a frontier district in which there was little evidence
that the seeds of civilization had been planted. The prairies were covered with the native grasses, the forests
were uncut and there was much wild game and many wild animals to be seen in the district. Much of the land was
still in possession of the government and Mr. Butcher entered a claim in Swan township, thus becoming the owner
of the property which is still in the possession of his son Osa. He performed the arduous task of developing a
new farm, breaking the sod and converting the wild land into productive fields. He was an energetic man, however,
and there were indeed few idle moments in his life. Soon his place showed the results of his handiwork in well
tilled fields and substantial buildings. He continued to operate his farm successfully until his death, which occurred
March 11, 1876. Many years before he had wedded Celia (Ballard) Amos, the widow of Pleasant Amos, of whom mention
is made elsewhere in this volume. After the death of Mr. Butcher his widow removed to Knoxville, establishing her
home in the northern part of the city about t894. There she still resides and is widely and favorably known. She
belongs to the Baptist church, of which Mr. Butcher was also a consistent member, and in politics he was an earnest
republican. He had a wide acquaintance and all who knew him spoke of him in terms of high regard. He, too, was
married twice and by his first wife, whom he married in Wapello county, he had three children, one of whom is yet
living, Mrs. Margaret Oldham, a resident of Oklahoma. Osa Butcher has one full brother, Richard, who is living
near Indianola, where he follows farming. The other children of the second marriage are deceased.
Osa Butcher was reared on the old homestead farm upon which he now resides and which has always been his place
of residence. He attended the district schools and mastered the branches of learning taught therein. He was trained
in the work of the farm and early became familiar with the practical methods of tilling the soil, so that he was
well qualified to take charge of the farm when it came into his possession. His entire life has been given to general
agricultural pursuits and he has today a valuable property of two hundred and two and a half acres pleasantly and
conveniently situated not far from the town of Pleasantville, on section 25, Swan township. He is always ready
to adopt any new method which he believes will improve the farm or add to the productiveness of the fields, and
he is equally successful as a stock raiser.
On the 30th of November, 1890, Mr. Butcher was united in marriage to Miss Elsie C. Miner, who was born in Swan
township, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Miner, now living retired at Pleasantville. Mrs. Butcher was reared
and educated there and taught for several years in the country schools. She has three brothers and one sister;
Charles, who is a merchant of Percy, Iowa; Mrs. Annie Acklin, of Des Moines; Edward, who is engaged in the real
estate business in Loup City, Nebraska; and Garfield, residing at Carlock, South Dakota. Mr. and Mrs. Butcher have
become the parents of five children: Dean, who formerly engaged in teaching and was for some time in the railway
mail service out of Chicago but is now at home; and Glen, Emma, Mary and John, all at home.
Mr. Butcher votes with the republican party and is a stalwart advocate of its principles. He has served for seven
years as a trustee of Swan township. Socially he is connected with the Knights of Pythias of Pleasantville, holding
membership in both the subordinate lodge and the Uniformed Rank. He is also a member of the Masonic fraternity
and his sons, Dean and Glen, are both Master Masons at Pleasantville. Dean is also connected with the Red Men.
The family attend the Christian church, of which Mrs. Butcher is a member. They are widely and favorably known,
occupying a prominent social position and enjoying the hospitality of the best homes in this part of the county.
History of Marion County, Iowa
And its People
John W. Wright, Supervising Editor
W. A. Young, Associate
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Marion County, IA
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