from Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa by Manoah Hedge The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1906

George W. Akerman resides in Fremont, where for sixteen years he has been engaged in the real-estate business. No history of this part of the county would be complete without mention of the Akerman family, for through more than a half century representatives of the name have been closely associated with business activity and development here. They have always stood for good citizenship, for public progress and business activity, and in an analyzation of the life record of George W. Akerman it will be found that he is a worthy scion of his race. He was born in Fremont, August 19, 1862. His father, Philip Akerman, was a native of Bavaria, Germany, being born there January 26, 1829, and emigrated to this country with his parents in 1833, settling near Hamilton, Ohio, where young Philip grew to manhood. On November 8, 1850, he was married to Miss Johanna Frederica Goehring, who was also a native of Bavaria, Germany, and in the year following came to Mahaska county, Iowa, and settled at Fremont. Mr. Akerman at once identified himself with mercantile and agricultural interests in the county, eventually becoming one of its most extensive landowners. Although he came to America a poor boy he accumulated and owned several hundred acres of land and was an extensive dealer, feeder and shipper of stock, in which enterprise he was for a number of years associated with J. H. Eastburn and John Q. White as partners. The former is now a prominent and well known stock commission merchant of Chicago, and the latter is now retired from active business and resides in Fremont. These gentlemen were among the heaviest feeders and shippers of stock in this part of the state and in an early day handled immense numbers of western and southern cattle, which they fed and fattened in Mahaska county. The most cordial and friendly relations existed between the partners in addition to their business dealings. Each enjoyed the most implicit confidence and esteem of the other and they were associated in business for a number of years with mutual pleasure and profit. Miss Johanna Frederica Goehring was born in Bavaria, Germany, December 9, 1825, and came to this country in 1848. She settled near Hamilton, Ohio, and was married, as stated above, to Philip Akerman, in 1850. To them were born six children, five of whom are now living. Harmon Akerman was born April 4, 1854, married Ollie McClain and five children were born to them-Earl H., John L. and Fred C. being the surviving ones, two having died in infancy. Emma C. Akerman was born December 20, 1852, and married L. A. Springer. Two children were born to them, Walter A., and Alma F., the latter dying December 23, 1894, aged six years, one month and eleven days. George W. Akerman was born August 19, 1862. (See sketch elsewhere.) Albert M. Akerman was born September 19, 1864, and married Clara Dinsmore, a daughter of Dr. D. C. Dinsmore, of Kirkville, Iowa. Two children were born to them-Philip C. and Harry D. He died September 27, 1895, aged thirty-one years and eight days, and was interred in Albia cemetery. At the time of his death he was the manager of the Hiteman Supply Company store, at Hiteman, Iowa. Maggie M. Akerman was born August 13, 1866, and married C. N. Neil. Lettie B. Akerman was born March 6, 1868, and married S. E. Heinzman. To them was born two children-Philip Ward and Jack E. Mrs. Philip Akerman, the mother, died at her home in Fremont on Febuary 14, 1892, aged sixty-six years, two months and five days. Philip Akerman, the father, died on February 27, 1895, aged sixty-six years, one month and seven days. George W. Akerman was reared upon the home farm and he and his brothers became his fathers assistants in carrying on the work of the home place and in managing his stock business. After arriving at mature years he engaged in the livery and horse business in Fremont and also operated in real estate on a small scale. Subsequently, however, he sold his livery barn and turned his attention to the hardware and implement business, at the same time continuing as a real-estate dealer. After two years he sold his store and has since given his time and attention to his real-estate operations, being associated in this work for several years with J. M. Pugh. In 1904 he opened a real-estate office in New Sharon and placed it in charge of C. C. Caves and C. F. Dinsmore, and at the same time entered into partnership relations with C. L. Dean & Brother, in the conduct of a real-estate office in Hedrick. He is operating in Fremont and he now handles a large annual business in lands in Mahaska, Wapello and adjoining counties and various states. In 1905 he negotiated realty transfers to the value of over six hundred thousand dollars, this including the sale of both town and country property. Mr. Akerman owns large landed interests adjoining Fremont and is also owner of several well improved farms in Mahaska county, and has assisted to develop and make Fremont what it is today. In 1903 he built a good two-story business block, in which his office is located. He has also erected one of the finest residences of the town. In addition to his real-estate operations he is a stockholder in the State Bank of Fremont, one of the solid financial institutions of Mahaska county. Mr. Akerman was married in Fremont, November 24, 1892, to Miss Rita J. Sigafoos, and to them were born three children Izah Louise was born December 21, 1895, and died December 23, 1895; David Lincoln was born May 26, 1897; and Fairy May, August 24, 1899. Rita J. Sigafoos was born in Brooklyn, Iowa, March 4, 1867. Her father, Dr. Russell Bigelow Sigafoos, was born in Holmes county, Ohio, April 16, 1830, where he was reared and educated. There he studied medicine and engaged in the practice of his profession for a time but emigrated to Iowa in an early day, settling at Brooklyn, where he continued in the practice of medicine. He was married on September 10, 1862, at Brooklyn, to Miss Cynthia Louisa Drake, who was born in Holmes county, Ohio, May 9, 1836, and died February 9, 1874. To them were born two daughters-Rita J., as mentioned above, and Fairy Mayfield, who first saw the light of day on March 4, 1865. The family came to Mahaska county in April, 1877, and settled in Fremont, where the Doctor continued the practice of medicine until his death, which occurred on January 25, 1897. He was one of the pioneer physicians of the state and was recognized as an able representative of the medical fraternity. He served one year in the war of the rebellion in Company H, Twenty-eighth Iowa Infantry, and was lieutenant of his company. Fairy Mayfield Sigafoos was married to T. N. Doolittle on September 5, 1890, and they have one child, Alfred Bigelow Doolittle. Mrs. Akerman was reared and educated in Mahaska county and became one of its teachers, following that profession for several years prior to her marriage. Mr. Akerman is a lifelong democrat but has never sought nor desired office. He did serve, however, as a member of the town council and served one term as township trustee, and has frequently been a delegate to numerous county conventions. He belongs to the Knights of Pythias and Woodmen of the World lodges in Fremont, and has a very extensive circle of friends, he has been a resident of the county throughout his entire life and has therefore witnessed much of its growth and development as it has emerged from frontier conditions to take on the improvements and evidences of an advanced civilization. He is pre-eminently public spirited and his co-operation can be counted upon to further the public welfare. He is well known throughout the state as a man of strict business integrity, thoroughly reliable and trustworthy and his life record proves that success and an honored name may be won simultaneously.

Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa

Mahaska County, Iowa Genealogy

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