Monday, May 29, 2017

Notes From My Grandmother | Rowley Lineage and Genealogy, Part 6

Somehow, much of my grandmother's hand written and (badly) typed notes and research wound up in my possession. Traveling from Chicago to Los Angeles and back to Chicago again. It sat, in the dark of my mother's closet, until my dad passed and my mom decided to begin her great purge. Knowing I had picked up the torch, the next generation to pursue the Greatest Hobby on Earth, the papers came to live with me. Unsure for many years on just what to do with them, I have decided to bring them out and share them with you - transcribed, of course - no one can read my grandmother's handwriting! But in her own words; mistakes, rambling sentences, and all. I think she will be pleased her work and her writing are once again out in the light.

Rowley Family Story con't ....
More on Rev. R C Rowley ~ bio, obituary

2/3/1909 - Adams County Free Press

We are this week pleased to present our readers the first of a number of pictures of nonagenarians who reside in Adams County. We purpose presenting one each week for some time, giving a short biographical sketch of each individual. All the world honors and respects the man or woman who has grown old in the service of humanity, and we feel that those of our citizens who have attained the advanced age of ninety or more years are deserving of special notice; that their experiences are interesting to our readers.

Rev Rossiter C Rowley, whose portrait we present herewith, is a resident of Corning, making his home with his daughter, Mrs J L Twining. His father, Joseph Rowley, was born in Ontario Co, New York, December 25, 1788. His mother's maiden name was Annie Beach, born in Ontario Co, New York, March 20, 1790. Rev Mr Rowley's parents were married in Victor, New York in 1815. The father died in Portage Co, Ohio, July 7, 1853, aged 63 years. The mother died November 11, 1867, aged 71 years. It will therefore be seen that Mr Rowley's progenitors were long lived stock.

Rossiter C Rowley was born July 18, 1818, in the town of Victor, Ontario Co, New York, and is therefore in his ninety-first year. In 1828 he moved with his parents to Portage Co, Ohio. At the early age of 17 years he decided upon his life's calling and was licensed to preach in 1838, and ordained  minister of the gospel in 1839. He moved to Putnam County, Indiana in 1838, and in November, 1840, was married to Rhoda A Vredenburg. After ministering for a season in Indiana, Mr Rowley removed to Illinois, where he performed missionary work until 1876, in the spring of which year he came to Iowa and settled in this county. He organized the Presbyterian churches in Brooks and Nodaway and officiated as their pastor for 25 years. In 1892 he was honorably retired from the ministry by the Presbytery of Corning, and since that time has made his home with his daughter in this city.

Rev Mr Rowley is one of the grandest men it has ever been our good fortune to know. He is known and loved by almost every citizen of this community. What a wonderful record to have been a minister of the gospel of good tidings for more than the length of an average life! What an experience it must have been that of the man who had preached salvation to the sinner, shared in the joys of his friends and comforted them in their afflictions for more than threescore and ten years! The record of twenty-five years as pastor of one church is indeed a wonderful one, and very few men can boast of a like privilege. It is indeed a pleasing personality that can retain such a hold on the affections of his people. Mr Rowley has been the good shepherd of parents in this community, their children and their children's children. His life has been a benediction to the people of Adams County, and his place in the affections of our people is firmly established. One of the pleasing recollections of his eventful life is the time when General Lafayette, on the occasion of his last visit to America, called at his father's home and held the then lad Rowley on his knee.

Nature has been good to Father Rowley, and despite his advanced age he retains his mental faculties as clear today as half a century ago. Erect in stature and clear of speech, it is a pleasure to be in his society. Optimistic in his views, the reverend gentleman believes that the world is constantly becoming better, and his unswerving faith in humanity is worthy of emulation. We are glad to have him in our community, and trust the he may be spared in health and happiness for years to come.



 Father Rowley died at Biggsville, Ill Wednesday evening July 10, 1912 at 8 o'clock, at the home of his daughter-in-law, Mrs M M Rowley, being overcome with the intense heat. He left Corning Monday morning of last week for Illinois. His grandson, Frank M Rowley met him at Albia and journeyed on to Biggsville. Tuesday morning he wrote to the homefolk telling of his safe arrival. Tuesday afternoon he decided to visit the home of Mrs M M Rowley, wife of his deceased son. He was unable to withstand the heat and suffered a sunstroke.

R C Rowley was born in Victor, New York, July 18th 1818. In 1835 he was licensed to preach (at the age of 17) and in 1839 he was ordained as preacher in the M E Church. In Sept of 1850 he was appointed to the Lewistown Church and was its pastor for 2 years. In 1856 he again became pastor for 1 year. He was married to Miss Rhoda Ann Vredenburg in 1840. 5 children were born to them. Mrs Rowley died December 12, 1890.

Rev R C Rowley is buried in Walnut Grove Cemetery in Corning, IA.

"His life was spent in doing good and scattering sunshine."

.......... end ..........

©2017 Anne Faulkner -, All Rights Reserved
©1950-82 Elizabeth Twining Potwin Thomas - private collection

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