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Barrett Whittemore
Born February 26, 1806

BARRETT WHITTEMORE, teacher and farmer, Bowen's Prairie; is the son of William Snow Whittemore and Mollie Locke, and was born February 26, 1806, in Cheshire Co., N. H.; he early exhibited a talent for mathematical and literary studies; in his 12th year, he mastered "Adams' old Arithmetic," and, four years afterward, when he desired to enter the High School of his native town, he secured the needed books by gathering and selling immense quantities of pumpkin seeds, which were then in demand for the manufacture of a peculiar oil. Before he was of age, he and his young associates pledged "total abstinence from all that can intoxicate." He was a prominent actor in the Lyceum of his town. He was early accustomed to farm labor, but his predominant taste was for literary pursuits. He came West in the spring of 1830, and located temporarily in Bureau Co., Ill. In the autumn of 1831, he went to the vicinity of Galena and Dubuque. In October, 1834, he opened a school in Dubuque, which he taught about four months. This was the second school taught in Dubuque, Mr. George Cubbage having taught there the previous winter. In the season of 1835, be worked at farming in Dubuque Co.; he then engaged in a saw-mill on the Little Maquoketa River, in Dubuque Co., till the spring of 1838, when he came to Jones Co., and settled where he now lives. Mr. Whittemore has always taken a deep interest in the cause of education, and has been a teacher for fifty years of his life, having taught more or less every year for that period of time. In 1841, he taught the first school in Jones Co., Bowen's Prairie, and has taught fully forty terms of school in Jones Co. since that date, most of which were in Richland Township. Mr. Whittemore was an "Orderly Sergeant" in the Black Hawk war. He has held various township offices, and was the first County Superintendent of Schools in Jones Co., having been elected in 1858. He was married in 1846, to Miss Louisa Blodgett, also a native of New Hampshire. They have no children. Both are consistent members of the Congregational Church at Bowen's Prairie. He is beloved by his pupils, respected by his neighbors and honored by his fellow-citizens. May he and his worthy wife continue for years on earth to enjoy the conscious rewards of a well-spent life. The old schoolmaster of Bowen's Prairie, sometime, with closing eye and fading memory, will whisper, "'Tis growing dark; school is dismissed;" then will our Divine superintendent read the life-record of Barrett, Whittemore, and write thereon—"Enrolled for promotion to the High School of Heaven."

Source: History of Jones County, Iowa, Western Historical Company, Chicago, 1879, page 692.


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