The Chariton Leader, Chariton, Iowa Thursday, December 28, 1905
The community was greatly shocked to learn of the death of DR. JAMES D. WRIGHT, one of our pioneer citizens, which occurred on Tuesday morning, December 26, 1905, at the home of his son, JENK R. WRIGHT. He had been slightly indisposed for a few days, but was able to be about and his illness was not thought to be serious. Members of his family called him Tuesday morning and not receiving any responses went to his bedside and were horrified to find that life was extinct, although the body was still warm. Death had come while he was apparently asleep, and was probably due to the infirmities of old age. On Thanksgiving day he celebrated his 85th birthday.
JAMES D. WRIGHT was born in Belmont County, Ohio, on November 30, 1820. He was of Irish descent, his father having emigrated to Ohio from Dublin. He was reared by his parents in the Quaker belief and his love for that faith was strong. His life was characterized by honesty, industry and simplicity, and his amiable disposition, his kind and generous nature, his cordial and pleasant manners won for him friends of all with whom he came in contact. Always affable, pleasant and agreeable to everyone he at once gained their respect. He had no enemies but legions of friends. He was the embodiment of the noblest traits and the community loses a valuable citizen. He studied medicine in Cincinnati, Ohio, graduating from the institution in 1843 and later graduated from the College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City.
DR. WRIGHT was married March 3, 1847, to MARGARET M. EVANS, who passed away 21 years ago after a happy married life of 37 years. They came to Iowa in October 1856, locating at Knoxville where they lived until April 1861, when they came to Chariton where they resided until death. In 1861 he enlisted in the 47th Iowa Regiment and served as surgeon until the close of the war. In 1868 he was elected to the State Senate and served efficiently in the 12th and 13th general assemblies of Iowa. He was one of the organizers of the State Board of Agriculture and was a member of the first Board of Trustees of the State Agricultural College at Ames and greatly assisted in building up that school. He also was interested in and assisted in the construction of the Burlington Railway through Iowa. The news of his sudden death caused a general wave of sadness and the tenderest condolence is extended to the three surviving children, MRS. J.A. BROWN, F.P. and M.E. WRIGHT, all of this city. One daughter, MRS. L.F. MAPLE, died several years ago. DR. WRIGHT had for many years been a prominent member of the I.O.O.F. and the G.A.R.
Very brief funeral services, in accordance with the Quaker custom, were held at the home of his daughter, MRS. J.A. BROWN, this (Thursday) afternoon at 2 o'clock, and were conducted by Dr. D.C. Franklin. The floral offerings were profuse and beautiful, coming from sympathetic hearts. The pall bearers were Messrs. F.R. Crocker, W.F. Hatcher, B.R. Van Dyke, O.A. Bartholomew, A.B. Gookin and L.H. Busselle. At the close of the services the remains were gently laid to rest in the Chariton Cemetery, the G.A.R. having charge of the brief obsequies at the grave.
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