Posted By:Deborah Brownfield - Stanley
Subject:John D. Denison ~ son of John D. and Triphena (Gorton) Denison
Post Date:September 16, 2005 at 04:08:12
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Forum:Madison County, NY Genealogy Forum
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A Narrative History
The People of Iowa
Curator of the
Historical, Memorial and Art Department of Iowa
Volume IV
Chicago and New York

JOHN D. DENISON. An able lawyer, a public spirited citizen, and a man of
the highest personal and professional character, John D. Denison measures up to the requirements of the best classes along all lines, and is accorded the confidence of the people of Des Moines and Polk County. He was born at
Clarion, Wright County, Iowa, September 29, 1872, a son of John D. and Triphena(Gorton)Denison.

The parents, both of whom are deceased, were born in Madison County, New
York. All his life the father was an agriculturist, and he was a splendid
farmer, many of his methods having been far in advance of his times. He used
everything on his farm, his crops were rotated, and ever so often he seeded down with blue grass, and he put back into the ground through fertilizers what he took out of it. His farm of 160 acres he bought in 1879 for $2,000 and he so
improved it that he sold it in 1905 for $16,000. He then moved to Lincoln Township, the same county, and bought a well developed farm, on which he continued to live until his death. To him is accorded the honor of introducing the
Holstein strain of cattle in Wright County, in spite of the ridicule of his neighbors, but he lived to see these same farmers follow his example when he had proved the success of his experiment. And this was true of other innovations of his in farming. A man of strong will, he was always willing to live up to his convictions. Six children were born to him and his wife, four of whom survive: Laura, who married E. J. Cameron, of Moline, Illinois, foreman of a
plow manufacturing company; John D., who is the second; Daisy O., who married J. F. Auner, a physician of Des Moines; and Louise R., who married Robert J. O'Connor, roadmaster of the Chicago, Milwaukee & Saint Paul Railroad, and resides at Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Mrs. Denison was a member of the Congregational Church. During th war between the states Mr. Denison served in the Forty-eight Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, and after the close of the war he
became an active member of the Grand Army of the Republic. In political faith he was a Republican. His father, John De Loss Denison, was born in New York State, from whence he first migrated to Wisconsin, and then, in 1868, came to
Iowa and bought land in Wright County, where he died. He cleared a farm out of the woods in Jefferson County, Wisconsin, and had many pioneer experiences there, and before he finally settled in Wright County he lived in several localities in Iowa, not at first finding what he wanted. However, he was satisfied with what he found in Wright County, and so never moved again. The maternal grandfather of Mr. Denison of this review was Joseph Penz Gorton, a native of Pennsylvania, who came west to Jefferson County, Wisconsin, and there cleared a farm. He, too, moved to Iowa, and died in this state. John D. Denison attended the Clarion High School, and in 1893 entered Upper Iowa University, from whence he went to the University of Nebraska, and was graduated therefrom in 1898, with the degree of Bachelor of Laws. Immediately thereafter he entered upon the practice of his profession at Clarion, and continued there for seven years, after which he went to Dubuque, and was in practice in that city for ten years, and then, in 1915, came to Des Moines, here he has since continued, building up a very large and valuable practice, with offices in the Polk Building.

In 1900 Mr. Denison married Miss Maude Lulu Clark, who was born at Lena,
illinois, and educated in Jennings Seminary, Rockford, Illinois, and Upper Iowa
University, Fayette, Iowa, and completed her education at the University of
Chicago. She taught English in the Freeport High School, Freeport, Illinois,
before her marriage. Mrs. Denison died in November, 1916, leaving one child,
John D., Junior, who was born in 1903. He had two years in Kemper Military
Academy, and was graduated from the University of Wisconsin. He is now
manager of the national advertising department of the Oklahoma News, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

In September, 1918, Mr. Denison married Nannie McDaniel Dewey, of Tappahannock, Virginia, who was educated in an academy of Richmond, Virginia. She is a daughter of J. F. McDaniel, a resident of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and a
theatrical magnate. Mrs. Denison taught school in her native state prior to her marriage, and is a lady of social charm, and very popular in Des Moines society. Mr. and Mrs. Denison have one child, Gordon Dewey, who is attending
the Roosevelt High School of Des Moines. Mrs. Denison is an Episcopalian, while Mr. Denison is a Congregationalist. He is Scottish Rite Mason, and also belongs to the independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. In political faith he is a Republican, although, being a warm admirer of William Jennings Bryan, he supported him and other Democrats at different times until 1922, since which time he has adhered to the straight party ticket. While living at Clarion he served on the school board, and was assistant county attorney for three years while a resident of Dubuque.

As is but natural, his fellow members of any association with which he is or
has been connected, look to him for advice and service, and for four years
he was head auditor of the Modern Woodmen of America, was director in the
Brotherhood of Yeomen and its trial attorney and general counsel for sixteen
years, and for three years was a member of the beneficiary board of the Royal
Neighbors, but increasing obligations of various kinds have necessitated his
withdrawal from these three organizations, for which he, however, has the
greatest respect and in whose progress he takes great interest.

*Don't know how accurate these bio.'s are, check your facts.