* BIOGRAPHY: Lot Curtis
"A Memorial and Biographical Record of Iowa"
Lewis Publishing Co. - Chicago, IL - 1896
It is now the privilege of the biographer to touch upon the life history of
Lot Curtis, another one of the representative farmers of Lucas County, Iowa,
his farm being located in Warren Township, and Chariton his post office
address. He came here in 1860 and is therefore classed with the pioneers in
Mr. Curtis was born in Belmont County, Ohio, August 23, 1822. At an early
period in the history of this county, three brothers, by the name of Curtis
and natives of Ireland, crossed the Atlantic and settled in the Old Dominion
From one of these brothers has descended the subject of our sketch.
Barnabas Curtis, a native of Virginia, was the father of Thomas Curtis, also
a native of that state and born in Loudon County, and this Thomas Curtis was
the father of Lot. He was by trade a carpenter and miller, but after
settling in Ohio gave his attention to farming. His wife, nee Frances St.
Clair, like himself was a native of Virginia. They became the parents of
seven children, namely: Anne, Jane, Emily, Malinda, Harriet, Lot and Thomas.
The daughters are all deceased and the sons are both residents of Lucas
County. The father died in 1827. The mother survived him a number of years
and her death occurred at the age of sixty. They were members of the Baptist
Church and were earnest and devoted Christians.
Lot Curtis was reared on his father’s farm in the Buckeye State and had the
benefit of a public school education only. In early life he learned the
trade of miller and carpenter, which he followed for some time in Belmont
County. From there, in 1860, he came West to Lucas County Iowa, accompanied
hither by his wife and six children. Three other children were added to
their family after they came to this State. His first settlement here was on
a farm four miles southwest of Chariton. While in Ohio he was in the milling
business with Dr. Wright. The Doctor had preceded him to Iowa, had become
the owner of mill property here, and had sent for Mr. Curtis to come and
take charge of it, which he did. Subsequently Mr. Curtis built a mill on his
own farm and ran it three years, after which he moved it to Chariton, where,
in company with his two sons, William and Joseph, he ran it several years
longer. After this he settled down to farming on his old farm and continued
to reside on it until 1890, when he sold out to his sons, Joseph and Asbury
Collins. That same year he bought the farm upon which he has since resided
and which is located on Section 7, of Warren Township, it being well
improved with good buildings, orchard, etc. In addition to this farm he also
owns a good property in town.
Mr. Curtis was married August 20, 1844 in Monroe County, Ohio, to Miss Mary
Chynowith, a native of Maryland and a daughter of William and Bridget
(Turner) Chynowith, natives of England. Her parents came to Iowa in their
old age and passed the closing years of their lives and died here. She was
the second born in this family of six children, the others being Joseph,
Martha, Jane, Elizabeth and Jacob. Mrs. Mary Curtis departed this life in
1883, leaving the following named children: William, of Russell, Iowa, who
was a soldier in the late war; Amanda, wife of M. A. Scoville, of Warren
Township, this county; Joseph and Cyrus, both of this township; Frank of
Iowa Falls; Asbury C. and Ira, both of Chariton. For his second wife,Mr.
Curtis married Mrs. Martha Sigler, nee Tracy, a native of Belmont County,
Ohio. Her parents, Benjamin and Nancy (Nichols) Tracy, were natives of
Virginia, and both died in Lucas County, Iowa, each at the advanced age of
eighty-one years. Their family was composed of eleven children, five sons
and six daughters. Of Mrs. Curtis we further record that her first husband
was Isaac H. Sigler, a native of Ashland County, Ohio, and that their
marriage occurred December 25, 1851. He died in Lucas County, Iowa, in 1880,
at the age of fifty-one years. Following are the names of their children:
Henry H., M. J., Nancy Jane Hedges, Elma McCollough, Minnie Yont and William
Mrs. McCullough is deceased.
Mr. Curtis is a No. 1 citizen in every sense of the word. He has filled a
number of offices of local importance, among which we not those of County
Supervisor, Justice of the Peace and trustee. Politically he is a Republican
religiously a Baptist.
Transcribed from the original by:
Gary W. Tharp