Truman D. Booth, who is remembered for the strong traits of his character as well as by the fact that he lived
continuously for thirty odd years on the old Booth homestead, was born in Fredonia, Licking county, Ohio. December
13, 1839, the son of Isaac and Mary Booth. He was still an infant when his mother died and his father removed to
Springfield, Illinois, and was but twelve years old when his remaining parent was taken from him, leaving him to
the care of his older brother Jacob. About 1852 the two brothers removed to Iowa county, Iowa, where they made
a valiant struggle against the obstacles opposing them, which were the greater partly because of their own youth
and partly because of the newness of the country, for it was still in the first stages of its development.
In that county Truman Booth was married, May 19, 1863, to Miss Lucy A. Piersal, who bore him four children. The
first two died in infancy, but two daughters, Mrs. Daniel Scalf and Mrs. John Ronan, still survive. Mrs. Booth
died in March, 1870, leaving her husband with the two daughters who were little more than babes, and on the 17th
of the following November he married Miss Emma A. Hartsock. She was born in Johnson county, Iowa, the daughter
of Daniel and Eliza (Nelson) Hartsock. The father was a native of Pennsylvania, the mother of Virginia; they were
married about 1840 and came to Iowa, where in Johnson county Mr. Hartsock took up one hundred and sixty acres of
government land. On this he lived for some thirty odd years and contributed his share to the transformation of
the conditions and manner of life that has taken place in the interval between that time and this. About 1872 he
removed to Washington county, where he bought a small place near Wellman, on which he lived in retirement the remaining
years of his life. Seventy six was the span of years allotted to him.
Of Mr. Booth's second marriage eight children were born. The two oldest boys died before they had compassed the
period of youth, but six sons and daughters are still living useful lives. They are: Nettie, the wife of Wesley
Lane, of South English, Keokuk county, Iowa; Jasper C., of Dayton, Iowa; Fred, who lives in Chicago; Vernon, who
works the home farm; Warren, a carpenter, living at home; and Erma, a graduate of the Wellman high school, who
is preparing herself for teaching. Mrs. Booth is a member of the Baptist church and is active in its work. She
lives on the home farm of two hundred and forty acres.
Mr. Booth was in his usual health up to October 7, 1901, when he had the misfortune to be kicked in the head by
a horse, his face being frightfully crushed. For three months the most intelligent medical and surgical care and
the devoted nursing of loving hands did all in their power to relieve his severe pain and save him to many years
of usefulness, but it was not so ordered by Divine Providence and on the 23d of January, 19o2, he was released
from his bed of pain.
At the time of his death Mr. Booth was one of the oldest residents of Lime Creek township, for he had settled on
the present Booth homestead in 1869 and had made it his fireside until his death. He was a careful, conservative
man, a man who looked life squarely in the face, meeting its problems unfalteringly and honorably, and never turning
aside from a duty. He had been a devout Christian for more than thirty years, having been united at first with
the Christian church, and affiliated later with the Baptists. In politics he was a staunch republican, but though
he never evinced any desire to hold office, he always demonstrated a keen interest in matters of public concern
and in good government. In short he was a man whose influence, extended as it was, over a broad period of years,
can only have been the very best, and must have left its impress upon the community and the age in the midst of
which he lived.
History of Washington County, Iowa
From the First White Settlement to 1908
BY: Howard A. Burrell
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Washington County, IA
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