ITS HISTORY AND TRADITION
D. W. McAHREN
Dr. D. W. McAhren is president and general manager of the Purity Serum
Company, which is engaged in the manufacture and sale of hog cholera and animal vaccines. Under his able direction the business has steadily grown until it is now one of the largest concerns of the kind in the United States. The value of its products is recognized by all livestock dealers, and the enterprise is a substantial element in Sioux City's commercial development. D. W. McAhren was born in Marshall county, Iowa, on the 15th of September, 1870, and is a son of Greenbury M. and Milissa(Shoemaker)McAhren, who were born and reared in Indiana, where they were married. In 1854 they became pioneers of Marshall county, Iowa, where the father bought a tract of government land. In 1870 he sold this property and drove an ox team to Crawford county, this state, where he bought a farm, four miles north of Denison. He resided on and operated that farm until the fall of 1889, when he moved into the town of Denison and engaged in the transfer and house-moving business. He was successful and continued in that work until 1916, when he retired from active business and moved to Sioux City, where he now resides, in the enjoyment of good health, at the age of eighty-seven years. The mother died in 1916, at the age of seventy-two years.
D. W. McAhren attended the public schools of Denison, remaining on the home
farm until 1889, when he began working with his father in the transfer
business, thus continuing until 1900, when he secured a clerkship in a clothing
store in Denison, where he remained until 1908, when, having accumulated enough money to pay for a technical education, he entered the Kansas City Veterinary College and was graduated in 1911 with the degree of Doctor of Veterinary Surgery. Immediately he went to work for the state in the manufacture of hog cholera serum at Des Moines, under the supervision of the state veterinarian.
In 1913 the state transferred the manufacture of serum to the supervision of the dean of the veterinary department of the Iowa State Agricultural College at Ames, and Dr. McAhren remained there one year. In 1914 he came to Sioux
City and engaged in the manufacture of hog cholera serum on his own account, under the name of the Standard Serum Company, but on February 1, 1915, organized the Purity Serum Company, of which W. J. Kennedy was made president, Dr. McAhren vice-president and chief veterinarian, and F. G. Whitmer secretary and treasurer.
In 1917 the name of the firm was changed to Purity Biological Laboratory, with the same officers, but in 1920 there occurred a change of officers and the name of Purity Serum Company was resumed, while Dr. McAhren was made president and general manager, J. E. Cathcart vice-president, with E. M. Cassaday, who came into the company in 1917, A. G. Sam, L. H. Henry, Dr. McAhren, F. L. Eaton and J. E. Cathcart as the board of directors. Under the management of Dr. Mc Ahren the company's products have come to be recognized generally as of superior quality and are in great demand throughout the country.
In 1903 Dr. McAhren was married to Miss Maud Hunter, of Dunlap, Iowa, and to them have been born three children: Virginia Grace, who died in infancy; Willard Calvin, who is attending high school; and Robert Hunter, who died at the
age of five years. Dr. McAhren is a member of Tyrian Lodge, No. 508, A. F. and A. M., and he also belongs to the Sioux City Chamber of Commerce. He and his family are members of the First Congregational church. Well educated,
possessing scientific attainments, sound business ability and a splendid personality, he has won an enviable place in the ranks of the representative men of this community.