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Jonathan Holt
In Memorium
This worthy man died at his home in Anamosa on Tuesday morning, June 16, at 2 o'clock and 40 minutes. He was a native of County Wicklow, Ireland, one of those rugged and picturesque counties whose sandy shoals and rocky steeps, so dangerous to the mariner, bound the Irish Channel on the west. His birthplace was in the Vale of Avoca, which the poet Moore has celebrated by a melodious song: "The Meeting of the Waters," that has circled the earth in its beauty. The waters whose bright confluence awakened the peot's inspiration, were the little rivers Avon and Avoca, which join each other between Rathdrum and Arklow---
[The poem which follows has been omitted in this transcription.]
Jonathan Holt was the third child in a family of nine. He was born in 1825, and came to America with his parents in his tenth year. They landed in St. John, New Brunswick, and made that city their home until 1857 when they came to Iowa with the subject of this sketch, his brother Edward C. Holt, and their daughter Catherine Tirzah Holt, who afterwards became Mrs. D.S. Kinsella and sleeps with the quiet turf in the city of silence. Jonathan Holt received a common school education which was begun in the old country, and finished at St. John. He learned the trade of stone and brick mason and became one of the best mechanics of his day. He was of a witty, humorsome and inventive turn of mind; a man of unusual powers of understanding who was an ornament to his business, and not a dull slavish sluggard, who aimed to be respected by dint of his business. There was gold in his character, not simple gilding. Every community is infested with white crows, but Jonathan Holt was not one of them. Conscience was a pearl of great price to him. Politically, religiously and socially he always stood high. His opinions, which were usually based on common sense, were as free and as honest as the winds of heaven. In politics he was a democrat and was never ashamed of his connnection with a minority party he believed to be in the right. He was an intense lover of life. During the space of sixty years that he was permitted to walk the earth he lived more than most men do. All men do not live alike because they are not the same blood and muscle and sinew and spiritual flame. Jonathan Holt was a man of superior possibilities. His lot did not fall in paths which invited him to public eminence, and he lived and died beloved and respected for his intelligence and fidelity as a commoner. He traveled extensively in his early manhood, and was well acquainted with the cities of Boston, New York, Baltimore and Richmond. His marriage occurred after he came west with his father and mother. He was married to Miss Maggie Delahunt in the city of Galena, and this excellent woman survives him. Death came to him in a gradual but complete collapse of his physical powers which manifested itself in paralytic symptoms. The conviction that he was failing in health clouded his spirits for a year before his death. A few weeks before he died he visited the mineral springs at Colfax in the hope that use of the waters would benefit him. No relief was obtained, though on the day of his arrival home he expressed the opinion that his health had been improved. But this cheerful feeling was like a rushlight, soon put out. He failed every day, and in less than a week was dead. On the Sunday night before his death he lost the power of speech, and grew partially unconscious. From his point it was an easy journey through the gates of shadow, and he passed away without knowing the beloved faces that surrounded his bedside. The funeral was held Wednesday last week. On the breast of the coffin was the inscription in silver: "At Rest," and beside it was a floral cross composed of tube roses, and lilies of the valley. The ashes were taken to St. Patrick's Catholic Church where the prayers for the dead were silently repeated by Rev. Father McCormick, and interment was made in the Catholic cemetery. The pall bearers were Dr. Skinner, S. L. Easterly, James Spellman, R. M. Bush, O. E. Ginnen and M. P. Conway.

Submitted by: Mary Kay Kuhfittig
Source: The Anamosa Eureka, Anamosa, Iowa, January 3, 1918.
Note: Jonathan Holt is buried at Riverside Cemetery, Anamosa, and not at the Catholic cemetery, Holy Cross. Jonathan and his father and brothers were responsible for some of the main street buildings in Anamosa and Monticello. The opera houses in both towns were known as "Holt Opera House."


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Last updated on Thursday, 12-Apr-2018 07:03:53 MST