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William Shaffer
Born April 2, 1851


William Shaffer, an enterprising agriculturist of Hale township, Jones county, was born in Morgan county, Ohio, on the 2d of April, 1851, a son of David and Eliza (Samons) Shaffer, both natives of Pennsylvania. In the Keystone state the parents were reared and married and later removed to Morgan county, Ohio, where they were living at the time of the Civil war. The father enlisted in the Union army from that county and died in 1863 at Columbus, Ohio, while still serving as a soldier. Three years later, in 1866, the widowed mother took her family to southern Illinois, where they resided for three years, and then removal was made to Scott county, Iowa, the home being there maintained for twelve or fourteen years. About eight years ago the family arrived in Jones county, where the mother passed away in 1906, having reached the eightieth milestone of life's journey. Her family consisted of eight children, namely: Cornelius, residing near Perry, Iowa; William, of this review; Charles, who died while serving in the Spanish-American war, in which he enlisted as a soldier from Nebraska; James, of Oklahoma; Fremont; Elmer, making his home in Montana; Evelyn, the wife of Thomas Allison, of Nebraska; and Isabelle, now Mrs. John Allison, also residing in Nebraska.
Although a lad of but twelve years of age at the time of his father's demise, William Shaffer faced the necessity of assisting in the support of his mother and the other members of the family, willingly taking upon himself a large share of the work of the home farm. As the years passed and his strength increased he aided more largely in the work of the fields, thereby gaining excellent and comprehensive training in agricultural pursuits that proved of value to him when later he entered business life on his own account. Upon attaining his majority he wisely chose as his life work the occupation to which he had been reared and he has since devoted his energies to farming, in which his efforts have met with gratifying success. With the passing of the years he became the owner of a tract of one hundred and twenty acres located on section 8, Hale township, and this farm, which he brought under a high state of cultivation, became one of the valuable farming properties in the locality. He recently sold this place for ninety-five dollars per acre and expects to invest elsewhere in the county.
In 1877 Mr. Shaffer was united in marriage to Miss Mary Conrow, who was born in Camanche, Clinton county, Iowa, in 1857, a daughter of Liscombe Conrow, and unto this union were born the following children: Minnie, the wife of Charles Leggett, residing near Center Junction, Jones county; Wilber, living in Clarence, Iowa; Elsie, who wedded Harry Hammond and makes her home near Clarence; and Maude, who still resides at home. Dependent upon his own resources at a very early age, starting out in his business career without any favoring advantages, Mr. Shaffer has worked his way upward by earnest, diligent labor and he now enjoys a gratifying prosperity that has come to him as the reward of his industry, perseverance and well directed efforts. He has become widely known during his residence in this community, and his excellent traits of character have gained for him the respect and regard of his fellowman.

Source: History of Jones County, Iowa, Past and Present, R. M. Corbitt, S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, 1910, p. 463.

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