History of Lincoln Township, Plymouth County, IA
From: History of the Counties of Woodbury and Plymouth, Iowa
A Warner & Co., Publishers
Chicago Illinois, 1890-91


CONGRESSIONAL township ninety, range forty five, is now known as Lincoln, but formerly was embraced in Plymouth civil township. It is located on the south line of the county, with Elkhorn township on the east, Stanton on the north and Hungerford on the west. It was organized October 3, 1860, one of the first in Plymouth county. The whole territory is exceedingly well provided with water courses and natural drainage. Muddy creek is in the central part of the township. Dry Branch, of Muddy creek, courses its way through the eastern part of the township, while Big Whiskey is found in the western part of the territory.

This is one of the best agricultural sections in nortwestern Iowa. The population in 1885, the last enumeration, was 669, of this number 500 were American born, and the remainder are chiefly German.

Early Settlement - The first man to enter this fair domain and build for himself a home, was Hon. William Barrett, whose name was for many years well known in Plymouth county, from the fact of his serving as the chairman of the board of supervisors for so many years. He had previously lived in Hungerford township, but after a short residence there he took up a homestead on section eight of Lincoln, where he remained until 1885-86, when he removed to Dakota territory, now South Dakota.

T. J. Rea (son of A. E. Rea, for many years a county officer here) homesteaded land on the northwest quarter of section eight, about the year 1866. He finally sold and removed to Kansas.

The Mathwig family were among the first to settle in Lincoln, along the northern line. They came in just after the Rebellion closed. The father died in 1887. Two sons are still residents of the township. But little settlement was made from that date on to the time the Illinois Central railroad was built through the county in 1869-70.

Schools and Churches. - The earliest public school was held near Mr. Barrett's, on section eight, about 1870. Much attention has been paid to school matters, and by the school superintendent's report of October, 1889, it is found that Lincoln township had six sub-districts, each provided with a suitable school house. The total scholarship, at that time, was 168. The number of shade trees about school grounds (planted out) was seventy five.

There is a Roman Catholic church on section one, known as St. Joseph's. A part of the congregation live in Lincoln, while the remainder reside in adjoining townships. It is now attended by Father Tierney, and numbers about forty families.

A German Lutheran organization is found in the western portion of Lincoln township, with a building on section eight. No data was furnished by those in charge of the records, but it may be said that the church is a strong one, and has been the means of great good to this people. The influence of the faith held by German Lutherans is indeed great. The young being reared to reverence the teachings of the church, good society always prevails in such communities.

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