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History of Adair
County, Iowa,
and its People.  1915.

Volume 1.


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Like the other townships, Lincoln occupies the space of a full congressional township.  The only stream of importance is the North River, which flows in a diagonal course through sections 18, 19, 30, 29, 28, 33, 34, 35 and 36, passing from the latter into the adjoining County of Madison.  On Section 36 it makes a confluence with Grassy Run which rises on section 6 in the northwest corner of the township and flows in a southeasterly direction through sections 5, 8, 9, 16, 21, 22, 27, 26, and 36.  There are other branches and creeks, which supply an ample quantity of water for all purposes.


The first settlement in the township was made by Zimri Horner, who entered land October 24, 1854, on section 2, and moved on to it a few weeks later.  Horner was a native of Indiana.  He afterwards moved to Wyscotte, Ia., and erected a mill, selling his farm in 1863 to A. L. McPherson.

The next settlement in Lincoln was made by John F. Coppock, shortly after that made by Horner, who purchased a farm near the center of the township on Section 22 and constructed a small dwelling out of the native timber.  Coppock was a mechanic and made some good improvements.  He came from Indiana, to which state he later returned.

Calvin Carson entered eighty acres of land in 1854, but did not move upon it until 1855.

Albert Barnett came also in 1855 and settled on a farm on North River.

Robert Ewers settled at an early date near Stuart on section 3 and kept the old house then known as the Octagon House.

Milton Mills was among the early settlers of Lincoln and entered land on the southeast quarter of section 3 or the southwest quarter of section 2.

Another pioneer settler in this township was William Stevens, who located on section 25.  The farm was originally the property of A. L. McPherson, but the first improvements were made after Stevens came into possession of the land.

Orin Dinsmore came the same year as Stevens.  A man by the name of Garnett was also an early settler.


The first death in Lincoln township was that of a son of Zimri Horner, named William, who died January 7, 1862, at the age of eight years, seven months and twenty days.

The next death was that of Robert Ewers on March 16, 1864.

The first ground in the township was broken by either Zimri Horner or John Coppock.  They also planted the first crops, such as corn and wheat.

The first schoolhouse in Lincoln was commenced in 1862 and completed in 1863.

The first marriage in the township occurred in July, 1868.  It was that of Charles Smith and Harriett Nelson, the ceremony being performed by Rev. J. W. McPherson.

The first religious services were held during the fall and winter of 1868 at a schoolhouse then known as the Lindley schoolhouse, but which has long ago been removed and destroyed.  Reverend McPherson had several appointments during the fall and winter season of 1868


Lincoln Township was organized in 1861.  The following were the first officers elected:  Milton Mills, member of board of supervisors;  Robert Ewers, justice of peace;  Zimri Horner, clerk;  John Compton, assessor.

Union Church of Lincoln Township was organized in the late '70s and represented all denominations.  In the early years of its existence services were held every two weeks at the schoolhouse in the independent district of Mount Vernon.

North River Union Sunday School was first organized in the summer of 1882, when B. F. Fry was elected superintendent.


A small portion of the Town of Stuart extends over the line from Guthrie County into Adair County in this township.  This portion comprises the Third Ward of Stuart and has about four hundred people living in it.  This is mostly a residence district.  For legal and taxation purposes this strip of town is counted as a part of Adair County.

Charles Stuart, in whose honor the Town of Stuart was named, was a Chicago capitalist who purchased a large amount of land in Lincoln Township and he was instrumental in persuading the Rock Island officials to locate the Town of Stuart.  He built an elevator and for several years bought and shipped grain, while developing his large farm in conjunction with George Gray.  He did a large business in that part of the country. 

Alfred Osborn was an early settler of the township and served a term as county supervisor.  T. P. Neville and C. A. Ostrander were also prominent early settlers of that township and each served several years as county supervisor.  George Smith, afterward county auditor, was another settler of the township.


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