John P. Morris, oldest citizen and last Civil War veteran of
Kahoka, died at his home Friday, November 5, 1937, at 6:30 o'clock. A.M. after
a number of weeks of declining health, aged 95 years, 9 months and 27 days.
John P. Morris was born in Greene county, Pennsylvania,
January 9, 1842, one of 10 children of Justice Morris and Rebecca Golden
Morris. The Morris family located in Clark county, Missouri, on a farm
three miles west of St. Francisville, when he was three years of age, and he
has been a resident here the subsequent ninety-two years, exempting a year
spent with relatives in Pennsylvania when he was five years old.
In Mr. Morris' boyhood the Indians yet frequented the forests
and camped along the streams. Deer, wild turkey and other game were in
abundance. He owned and worked oxen for many years, having farmed in
Sweet Home township prior to his locating in Kahoka thirty-four years ago.
At the outbreak of the Civil War Mr. Morris enlisted in the
Missouri state militia and in 1863 joined Co. G. of the 21st Missouri
Volunteer Infantry, under Col. David Moore. For a time he was
transferred to the 24th Missouri. Besides this state he saw service in
Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. His regiment
took part in many major engagements, at one time losing 175 men in a single
day's battle. They fought the battle of Ft. Blakely, Alabama after the
surrender of Lee. Mr. Morris was mustered out at Ft. Morgan, Alabama,
April 19, 1866. There are a very few surviving members of his regiment
among them being Mike Cashman, his bunkmate, of the Soldiers and Sailors Home
at Quincy, Ill.
Mr. Morris was married to Hannah Beckner, daughter of Aaron
Beckner and Rachael Baunty Beckner of St. Francisville, June 6, 1866.
She preceded him in death April 2, 1872. To this union were born four
children, a son, who died in infancy, Mrs. Arthur (Mary) Vaughan, deceased,
Jasper G. Morris of Wyaconda, and Mrs. Jos. (Lorana) Reese of Bloomfield,
Mr. Morris was married to Miss Virginia Holliday, daughter of
Captain William Holliday and Amanda Easton Holliday, at Keokuk, Iowa, April
27, 1875. To this union were born two children: Walter Morris at home
and Mrs. Henning (Nora) Pierson of Chicago, Ill.
Besides his widow, Mrs. Morris, there survive two sons, Jasper
G. Morris and Walter Morris; two daughters, Mrs. Reese and Mrs. Pierson; one
sister, Mrs. Louise Beckner of Spokane, Wash.; fourteen grandchildren; twenty
great grandchildren; a number of nephews and nieces and a host of other
relatives and friends.
Mr.. Morris was converted and for a number of years was a
member of the Church of God at Peakesville. After locating in Kahoka, he
joined the Methodist Episcopal church.
In other days he was an active member of the A.H.T.A. and the
Mr. Morris was a faithful Christian, a loving and devoted
husband and father, a loyal friend and an upright citizen.
The funeral services were held at the Methodist Episcopal
church, Sunday afternoon, Nov. 7 at 2:00 o'clock conducted by Rev. W.W. Miller
of Pulaski, Iowa, assisted by the pastor, Rev. Paul C. Paschal. The
music was by a quartet, Mrs. Helen Allen, Mrs. Flora Belle Bash, Harry
Jenkins, and Rev. Paschal. Burial was in the Kahoka cemetery with
Military honors in charge of the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
The pallbearers were: Stanley Vaughan, Clyde Reese, Vernie
Reese, Russell Poole and Howard Morris.
Among those from a distance who attended the funeral were:
Mrs. H. A. Pierson of Chicago, Ill.: Mr. and Mrs. J.G. Morris and son, Howard,
Mrs. Madaline Gillett and son, Ronald, Mrs. Mae Herron and son, Dean of
Wyaconda; Mr. and Mrs. J.M. Reese, Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Reese, Mr. and Mrs. C.
Dilliner, Mrs. Lester Dixon of Bloomfield, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. Bernie Reese of
Ottumwa, Ia.: Mr. and Mrs. M. Goodlander, Washington, Iowa; Mr. and Mrs. S.
Vaughan and daughter, Dorothy, Mr. and Mrs. George Case of Lewiston, Mo.; John
Vaughan, Elmwood Ill.; Mr. and Mrs. Russell Poole, and son, Melvin Lee of