Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Jerome - A Village in Lincoln Township, Appanoose County, Iowa

The village of Jerome is located in Section 3 near the northern edge of Lincoln Township in Appanoose County, Iowa, as shown in the Plat Book of Appanoose County Iowa published by the North West Publishing Co. in 1896:   

Prior to the creation of Lincoln Township, Jerome was in Shoal Creek Township, a pioneer township created in January 1848. Shoal Creek Township included much of the southwestern part of Appanoose county and a considerable portion of southeastern Wayne county. It was named after Shoal Creek, the principal stream of the region.  With the creation of new townships Shoal Creek Township lost its existence. 

The first settlers of the Jerome area came during the territorial period of Iowa. Among the settlers who came in the late 1840s and the early 1850s were John Moore, William Becknal, David Hawkins, John Criswell, Noah Stoner, Calvin R. Jackson, Henry Wilson, John F. Fuqua, S. C. Vanness, Peter Sidles and James Hagan.   David Hawkins and James Hagan were my Great-Grandfathers and John Criswell was my Great-Great-Grandfather. 

Men who came in the 1860s were James Moore, Samuel Pendergast, D. S. Larimer, Henry Entzininger, Thomas Owen, Jacob Kinney, John Pendergast, William D. McElvain, William G. Crow, L. D. Dudley, James L. Buck and W. W. Bollman. 

In 1870, Jesse G. Kinney established a home in Jerome.  Ora, his son, recalls early memories of the time when there were only four homes in Jerome, those of Henry Wilson, Daniel Larimer, Calvin Jackson and James Hagan.

Horace W. Lyon was an early merchant and was appointed the first postmaster in 1856.  It is said that he was not popular in the community because many objected to his sale of liquor.  However, he had a blind son name Jerome who was very popular.  The town was named for this popular son.

The town was subdivided early, as shown in the 1896 Plat Book:

Jerome and Lincoln Township are located  in the western part of Appanoose County -- about eight miles west of Centerville and two miles south of Highway No. 2.

Sources: [1] Memories of Jerome, Iowa, 1989 written by Susie R Sidles and previously published in the Seymour Herald on January 27, 1955.  [2] A Pictorial History of Towns of Appanoose County by W. M. Heusinkveld (2003), pages 40-41. [3] Plat Book of Appanoose County Iowa drawn from actual surveys and county records by the North West Publishing Company (1896) and printed by F. Bourquin. [4] Fitzpatrick, T. J.  "The Place-Names of Appanoose County, Iowa" published in American Speech, Volume 3, Number 1 (October, 1927), pp. 39-66, published by the Duke University Press. 

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