Born January 6, 1851
||Mike Marek is a progressive and enterprising agriculturist of Cass township who through, the careful management of his business affairs is meeting with creditable success. As the name indicates he is of foreign birth and belongs to a family that, like many another that has come from across the water, sought the opportunities of the new world that advancement might be made in business lines and better advantages given to the members of the household. He was born in Bohemia on the 6th of January, 1851, a son of Martin and Kate Marek, also natives of that country. The family came to America about 1853 and located first in Davenport, Iowa, where they remained for about eight years. Removal was then made to Jones county, the family residence being established in Castle Grove township. Mrs. Kate Marek, the mother of our subject, passed away about two weeks after the arrival of the family in Davenport, and later the father was again married. Mike Marek of this review was the only child born unto the first union, while by his second wife Mr. Marek had three sons, Charles, John and Martin, the latter of whom is mentioned elsewhere in this volume. The father passed away in 1906 when he had reached the eighty-third milestone on life's journey.
Mike Marek was but two years of age when the family took up their abode in America, and consequently almost his entire life has been spent here. The common schools of Davenport and Jones county afforded him a fair knowledge of the common branches of English learning, and he remained on his father's farm in Castle Grove township until, he was about twenty-four years of age, when he was married. He then entered business on his own account as an agriculturist, operating a farm in the capacity of renter for two years, at the expiration of which time he purchased forty-five acres of land I in Linn county. Four years later he bought thirty-five acres, making eighty acres in all, and at the end of another four years he purchased a tract of twenty acres in Jones county, so that he then owned one hundred acres. He located on his Jones county property, which was located in Castle Grove township, and made his home there for four years. At the expiration of that period he rented his farm and removed to Monticello, living there for five years while working on the railroad. The next five years were spent on his farm in Castle Grove township but at the end of that time he sold the place and purchased one hundred and forty acres in Cass township, where he now resides. He is directing his efforts toward its further development and under his excellent management it has become a highly improved farm. He has closely studied agriculture in all its various phases, practices rotation of crops, knows the cereals best adapted to soil and climate and has so conducted his business as to gain for himself a most creditable place among the substantial and representative farmers of the community.
It was on the 14th of November, 1874, that Mr. Marek was united in marriage to Miss Anna Lawrence, who was born in Bolder township, Linn county, on the 25th of May, 1856. Her parents were Andrew and Barbara Lawrence, natives of Germany and Bohemia respectively. Although no children came to bless their union, Mr. and Mrs. Marek have raised four children, three girls and one boy, and they also have an adopted son, Wensel.
Although Mr. Marek has won a most creditable degree of success in agricultural lines, he is perhaps better known to his fellow citizens by reason of the active and helpful interest which he has taken in community affairs. He is a stalwart supporter of the republican party and for the past six years has filled the office of township trustee. In this capacity he has under his supervision and care twenty-six miles of township roads, for the condition of which he is responsible. He is also serving as a member of the school board and the cause of education finds in him a stanch champion. His influence is ever upon the side of improvement, advancement, progress and reform and these qualities constitute him a citizen of worth in the community in which he resides. He is a member of the Catholic church of Anamosa, the teachings of which form the guiding influence of his life, and his salient characteristics are such as have gained for him the respect, confidence and good will of his fellowman.
Source: History of Jones County, Iowa, Past and Present, R. M. Corbitt, S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, 1910, p. 422.
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