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William Albin Stingley
Born March 30, 1849


William Albin Stingley, the section foreman of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad at Center junction, which position he has occupied continuously for twenty-six years, is one of Madison township's most representative and highly esteemed citizens. A native of Indiana, he was born in Henry county on the 30th of March, 1849, a son of Andrew and Lucinda (Ireland) Stingley. The mother was born in Ohio while the father was probably born in Pennsylvania, his parents having come of Pennsylvania Dutch stock. In the course of time, however, both the Stingley and the Ireland families removed to Henry county, Indiana, where the parents of our subject were united in marriage, and in 1849 they came west to Jones county, Iowa, locating about four miles north of Mechanicsville, in Rome township, where the father entered one hundred and sixty acres of land. In 1853 the father was accidentally shot by a friend while deer hunting and later the mother was married to Alexander Long. He, too, met an unnatural death, having been caught in a blizzard while in Cerro Gordo county in company with another party, at which time he was frozen to death. The mother was again married, her third union being with Collins McClaflin. She was a member of the Christian church, and in the faith of that denomination she passed away on the 27th of August, 1902, at the age of seventy-four years.
William Albin Stingley spent the period of his boyhood and youth in his native state and was but four years of age at the time of the death of his father. Owing to the limited means of his widowed mother it was necessary for him at a very early age to assist in the support of the family, and the educational advantages which he enjoyed therefore, were very meager, for he laid aside his text-books at the age of fourteen years. He remained under the parental roof, giving his mother the benefit of his aid, until sixteen years of age, when he left home and started out to earn his own livelihood in the business world. He was engaged in agricultural pursuits as a farm hand for about nine years, at the end of which time, through hard labor and careful saving of his earnings, he had accumulated sufficient means with which to engage in farming on his own account. In 1877 he was united in marriage to Miss Estella Preston, a daughter of H. C. Preston, of Madison township, Jones county, further mention of whom appears elsewhere in this volume.
After his marriage Mr. Stingley operated the farm of his father-in-law for about five years, and in 1882 withdrew from agricultural life and removed to Center junction, where he became identified with the railroad business. With the exception of the first fifteen months he has held the position of section foreman on the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad at this place continuously for the ensuing twenty-six years, a fact which stands in incontrovertible evidence of his efficiency, promptness and faithfulness. Energetic, industrious and trustworthy at all times, he has succeeded in making himself indispensable to the company and today is one of their most trusted and valued employees at this place.
As the years have come and gone the home of Mr. and Mrs. Stingley has, been blessed with nine children, eight of whom still survive, namely: Bertha, the wife of William Spohn, of Center junction; Maud, who married J. E. Duncan and also resides in Center junction; William A., operator for the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad at Norton, Kansas; Earl H', station agent for the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul at Center junction; Harry, residing at home; Alma, now deceased; and Roscoe, Olive and Helen, all still under the parental roof.
Mr. and Mrs. Stingley are both members of the Methodist Episcopal church, of which he is a member of the board of trustees and is also class leader. He is likewise serving as a member of the board of trustees of the cemetery. Fraternally he is identified with the Modern Woodmen of America, while politically he gives stalwart support to the republican party. For four years he served as town assessor and was town clerk for six years, while he is now serving efficiently as the secretary of the Center junction high school. Although his educational advantages were very limited, nevertheless he is a well informed man, having always been a broad reader, keeping in touch with all matters of general interest and public moment. He is loyal and public-spirited in his citizenship, an unassuming, pleasant and companionable gentleman, standing among the first for integrity of purpose and general high character in the community where he has so long resided.

Source: History of Jones County, Iowa, Past and Present, R. M. Corbitt, S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., Chicago, 1910, p. 209.

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