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J. P. Scroggs
Born 1841

J. P. SCROGGS, feed and sale stable, buying and shipping horses, Anamosa; is a native of Greene Co., Ohio, and was born May 20, 1840; his parents came to Jones Co , Iowa, in the spring of 1849, and located in Anamosa; they were early settlers. He grew up to manhood here, and learned the trade of carpenter and joiner, and was engaged in building for twelve years, and is now engaged in buying and shipping horses East. There are only several here now that were here when he came. He married Miss Eliza Graves, a native of New York State, April 2, 1866; they have one son—Charlie P., born June 4, 1861.

Source: History of Jones County, Iowa, Western Historical Company, Chicago, 1879, page 575.

J. P. Scroggs needs no introduction to the readers of this volume, for his record is largely a familiar one to the citizens of Jones county. He has figured long and prominently in the public life of the community, and over the record of his official career there falls no shadow of wrong nor suspicion of evil. He has recently retired from the mayoralty, having given Anamosa a public-spirited, businesslike administration, characterized by both reform and progress. He was born in Greene county, Ohio, in 1841, and is a son of Allen and Eliza (Ryan) Scroggs, the former a native of Ohio and the latter of Pennsylvania. In the year 1849 they left the Buckeye state and removed westward to Jones county, Iowa, making the journey by boat and landing at Dewitt, while the remainder of the way was covered with ox-teams. Eventually they reached Anamosa, which was then a small but growing town. The father was a physician, becoming one of the first practitioners in Jones county, and in the early days, when this district was but sparsely settled, he rode for long miles across the prairie to minister to the sick and suffering. He remained for many years the loved family physician in many households and at the ripe old age of eighty-five years passed away honored and respected by all who knew him. His wife died at the age of seventy-seven years. Comparatively little is known concerning the ancestral history of the family save that the grandfather, Allen Scroggs, was of Scotch descent, while his wife was of German lineage. In the father's family there were the following children: Samantha, the deceased wife of C. L. Niles, a resident of Anamosa; Lena, who became the wife of Linas Pitcher, who resided in Anamosa for some years and then went to Boston, and is now deceased, his widow making her home in Boston; Nellie, the wife of C. L. Niles, of Anamosa, by whom she has one son, Clifford; Maude, the wife of William Louden, of Seattle, Washington, by whom she has five children; J. P., of this review; John, who married Miss Hattie Streeter, resided at Anamosa, Iowa, and finally at Kirkman, this state, where his death occurred when he was forty-five years of age, his widow and one child, Lewis surviving; and L. A., who lives in Beatrice, Nebraska, and has six children.
J. P. Scroggs remained at home through the period of his minority and pursued his education in one of the old-time log schoolhouses which were a common feature in pioneer, days. He went through the usual experiences, hardships and privations of frontier life, and his memory covers the period when much of this district was a wild and unsettled prairie, covered with the native prairie grasses through the summer months, while in the winter seasons it presented the appearance of an unbroken and dazzling sheet of snow. He was only twelve years of age when his, father sent him to Muscatine with the vigilance committee. The father was much interested in raising and selling horses, and the vigilance committee was the protection of the stock-raisers against the thieving band who roamed over the country and stole the stock. After attaining his majority J. P. Scroggs engaged in clerking for a year. He was quite young when he began to work at the carpenter's trade, but later turned his attention to buying and selling horses, which he shipped to Boston and New York. He is now one of the oldest horse dealers in the county and his business has been scarcely equaled in extent by that of any other dealer. In a measure he still continues in the same line of business, though not so actively as in former years. In all of his undertakings he has manifested a spirit of enterprise that has enabled him to overcome difficulties and obstacles and work his way steadily upward in business lines.
In the spring of 1865 Mr. Scroggs was united in marriage to Miss Eliza Graves, a daughter of William and Electa Graves, natives of New York. They came to Iowa about 1860 and established their home in Jones county. It was in that year that Mr. Scroggs went to Pike's Peak, attracted by the gold discoveries in that section of Colorado. He traveled westward with four yoke of oxen and remained for a year in the mines, after which he returned to Jones county, where he has resided continuously since. Unto him and his wife was born one son, Charles P., who married Miss Mamie Burke, a daughter of Thomas Burke, and now resides in Dallas, South Dakota. They have two daughters, Ethel and Ruth. Mrs. Eliza Scroggs died in 1896 and in 1898 Mr. Scroggs was again married, his second union being with Mrs. Nina S. Hales, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Duncan, who were natives of Illinois.
In his fraternal relations Mr. Scroggs is an Odd Fellow, having become a member of the order in 1864. He was a charter member of the lodge at Earlville, Iowa, and now belongs to Anamosa Lodge, No. 40. In politics he is an independent republican, usually supporting the candidates of that party yet not considering himself bound by party ties. He has been active and influential in political circles, and that he has the entire confidence of the public in matters of citizenship is indicated in the long period in which he has been retained in office through the vote of his fellow townsmen. He served for about a quarter of a century as a member of the city council and in 1906 was elected mayor of Anamosa, filling the office for three years. He has also acted as a substitute for other mayors during their absence from the city and at all times has exercised his official prerogative in support of measures that have been instituted for the benefit and up-building of the city. He has been a member of the school board for many years and is active in public matters, having been a source of value in promoting the municipal welfare. He possesses in his nature those qualities of sociability and geniality which everywhere win warm friendships and high regard.

Source: History of Jones County, Iowa, Past and Present, R. M. Corbitt, S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, 1910, p. 94.

From Souvenir of Anamosa, published by The Anamosa Journal, 1907. Submitted by Jim Christianson.

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