Pioneering Families
... with Roots in Madison County


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Seth Lockwood, one of the oldest citizens in the county, was born in Goshen, Litchfield County, Ct., May 7, 1793. At two years of age his father moved to Windham, N. Y., now Lexington, Greene County. Lived there until 1820. Was married there to Diantha Thompson, the 6th day of May, 1813, who died in Madison County, July 17, 1824, leaving four children. In November, 1814, he cast his first vote for Governor; in 1817 his first vote for President, James Monroe being the candidate. Mr. Lockwood has never missed a vote since his first of 1814. Married Hepsy Boyden, of Smithfield, Madison County, in 1825, who bore him three children; she died in 1871. From Greene County he removed to Madison, Feb. 28, 1820, living there till 1837; then moved to Hinsdale, Cattaraugus County, May 21, 1837, and lived there thirty years, removing to Floyd County in November, 1868. The children by his first wife were—Eli T., James P., George M., Sarah Ann; by his second wife—Mary F., J. C., and F. E. Of the four children of first wife but one is living—James P., of Pleasant Grove Township (see below). In 1825 Mr. L. read law with Huntington & Palmer, of Peterborough, N. Y., for three years, and practiced until the new code of New York went into effect in 1842. He was justice of the sessions for two terms in Cattaraugus County. For reminiscences, Mr. Lockwood distinctly remembers the extraordinary eclipse of June 6, 1809, when for about two hours fowls went to roost. He has seen the ground and fences white with snow the 4th of July. Mr. Lockwood has always taken an active interest in the political issues of the country; voted the Democratic ticket until 1856—or the Kansas question—when, according to his views, the Democrat party receding from true Democracy, he voted the Republican ticket, when John C. Fremont was candidate. Any one being acquainted with that question will remember the cause for change.
(pp. 860-861)

James P. Lockwood, one of the honored veterans of the late war, was born of good New England blood. His father, Seth Lockwood, whose interesting sketch appears here, and as will be seen was a native of staid old Connecticut. James P. was born in Greene County, Nov. 19, 1816, being second son of Seth and Diantha Lockwood. He lived with his parents until in his fourteenth year, when he turned to the state of manhood—" looking out for himself." Between this period and that of his coming West he followed various avocations that would bring him an honest penny. At first he worked on the Croton Water-works about New York City; then in the lumber business, and also learned the joiner's trade, working at it at different times, until his moving to Floyd County, in Syracuse and Rochester for several years. He helped to build the propeller "Indian Chief," after the completion of which he went up through the Welland Canal, just completed, and so on to Milwaukee, Wis., in which State he remained for several years, and from which he enlisted. While on the lake the propeller struck a ledge of rocks, giving him a touch of old ocean experience—his first and last. He lived in Detroit a few weeks only; and a year or longer in Milwaukee. He helped to build the depots along the route of the Prairie du Chien Railroad—that road, the civil engineers of which made but one important mistake, as the story went those days. When asked by the President their opinion of the road replied "that it was all right only they might have got one more curve in it as well as not." From railroad work he went to Menasha (Sweet Water), Northern Wisconsin, at the outlet of Lake Winnebago, where he was in season to help build the first frame house in that town. He also helped to build two sawmills, dam and flumes, and ran each a year or so. His experiences in this town were not of a profitable nature, working there at the hardest kind of pioneer labor for five years, and not having scarcely money enough to get fairly out of the town with. His next residence was at Union, Wis.; from there to McGregor's Landing, where he built the dry docks; from McGregor's he moved to Racine, working in the works of the J. I. Case Threshing Machine Company. It was while at Racine, he enlisted in the Twenty-second Wisconsin Infantry, being in service two years, or until his health failed him. He was detailed as hospital nurse, and afterward given full charge of a hospital from that time out. These duties are always very arduous. Some incidents connected with the duties made them extremely so. For one instance among many, we relate that while at Danville, Ky., at a rumor that Gen. John Morgan's fiends were on a raid in that locality, the whole force, 15,000 strong, broke camp in search for them, leaving Mr. Lockwood for four days in sole charge of 150 sick men. This is what ruined his health; and awhile afterward he returned to Wisconsin, bringing with him all the sick he could, landing them at Chicago. After regaining his health he threw up a pension and re-enlisted in the 100 days' enlistment, going into Company F., Thirty-ninth Wisconsin Regiment, and for which he holds a certificate of the President's thanks for honorable service. After his discharge he was foreman of Racine & Mississippi Railroad; from this work he moved to Pleasant Grove in 1866, where he has since resided. Mr. Lockwood is a man of good judgment, out-spoken, but of honorable intentions and purposes. He was married in Menasha, Wis., in 1847, to Eliza Atwood. She died in 1857, in Chickasaw County, Iowa, leaving four children. In 1860 Mr. Lockwood was married in Racine, Wis., to Candace M. Salisbury, a native of Delaware County, N. Y., as were also her parents, April 29, 1870. Mrs. Lockwood died in Pleasant Grove, leaving a son, two years of age—Charles Erskine, who is residing with his father.
(pp. 859-860)

Source: History of Floyd County, Iowa. Chicago: Inter-State Publishing Co., 1882, p. 859-861.

 

 

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