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The Blue Book of Iowa Women A History of Contemporary Women

Compiled by Winona Evans Reeves, 1914.


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Mrs. J. K. Macomber

Mrs. J. K. Macomber, of Des Moines, by profession a travel conductor, was born in New York.  Her maiden name was Mattie Locke;  she came in infancy with her parents to Davenport, where her father helped to build the first bridge across the Mississippi river.  At the age of fifteen she entered the Iowa State College at Ames;  graduating from there she entered Ann Arbor, upon completing the course there she taught a year at Cornell College.  She went to Germany to continue her studies, and then to France, specializing in languages.  Upon her return to America she was offered a position as teacher of French in Vassar College, but declined the position, and was married to J. K. Macomber, science professor at Iowa State College, who later became a lawyer and practiced his profession in Des Moines until his death.  They have seven children:  Kingsley Macomber, living in California;  Elsie, now Mrs. Louis Lower of Chicago;  Kate, now Mrs. Charles Clarke, of Adel, whose husband is a son of Gov. Clarke;  Locke Macomber, of Des Moines;  Sumner Macomber, living in Mexico;  Arabella, now Mrs. Fred Thompson, and Miss Bertha, who is still in school.  Mrs. Macomber has for many years taken parties to Europe, to the Orient and to Mexico.  She enjoys the journeys herself, is never blase, but gains each year herself a new fund of pleasure and information in studying the changed social conditions in the lands visited from year to year.  She is a good business woman, and an accomplished linguist, two essentials in her profession.  She has an unusual collection of old china and brasses.  She is a member of the P. E. O. sisterhood and is one of the very well known women of this state.



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