James C. HANNA, b. 1854

James C. Hanna, possessing untiring and quick perceptive power that enables him to form his plans readily and execute them with dispatch, has since 1896 been a prominent representative of the productive industries of Oskaloosa, being now president of the Hawkeye Overall Company. His business record has demonstrated the truth of the saying that success is not the result of genius but is the outcome of clear judgment and experience. A native of Des Moines county, be was born on 12th of March, 1854. His paternal grandfather, James C. Hanna, came to Iowa to make a permanent location on the 1st of September, 1837. He had visited the state in 1836 and the following year removed to Iowa by wagon, bringing his money in a nail keg. The farm which he purchased has since been in possession of the family and has always been free from debt. It is now owned by James C. Hanna and his sisters and is a valuable and well improved property. The grandfather prior to coming to Iowa had been engaged in merchandising in Union county, Indiana. He was a prominent and influential citizen of Des Moines county, esteemed for his genuine personal worth and admired for his business successes. He was killed by an ox dragging him down years after he came to Iowa, being at that time forty-four years of age. His wife survived him and died at the age of eighty-four years. James L. Manna, father of our subject, was born in Indiana and after reaching adult age was married to Elizabeth Moore, a native of Virginia and a daughter of Francis Moore, who was born in County Antrim, Ireland, and on coming to America settled at Moundsville, West Virginia. He became a resident of Des Moines county, Iowa, in 1837, improved a farm there, built a brick residence and successfully carried on general agricultural pursuits for a long period. He was a prominent and helpful member of the Methodist church and took an active part in settlement building and in the church work, doing all in his power to promote the cause of the denomination with which he was affiliated. His life was honorable and upright and he left behind him an untarnished name. The marriage of James L. and Elizabeth (Moore) Hanna was celebrated in Iowa in 1839, having settled in Des Moines county with their respective parents previous to that time. Mr. Manna turned his attention to general agricultural pursuits, entering eighty acres of land from the government. His labors resulted in the improvement of a splendid farm and as his financial resources increased he extended the boundaries of his property until his aggregate possessions included six hundred and forty acres of valuable land in Des Moines county. He too, was deeply interested in the intellectual and moral progress of the community and put forth effective energy and effort for the upbuilding of the church in his locality. He was likewise president of the school board, was township trustee and justice of the peace, while for a period of twenty-four years he served as postmaster of Parrish. Over the record of his official career there fell no shadow of wrong or suspicion of evil, as at all times he was loyal to the trust reposed in him, discharging his duties with ability of superior order. In the family were eight children and those yet living are as follows: Rebecca, now the wife of Isaac Philips, who is living on the old homestead farm; Franc, the wife of T. E. Rhodes, of New London, Iowa; James C., of this review; John M., of Kansas City; Sadie, the wife of Dr. Harry Zaizer, of Burlington, Iowa; Elizabeth, the wife of W. P. Cleaver, of Oskaloosa; W. B., a physician at Mass, Michigan; and Mary E., who became the wife of R. A. Alexander and died November 6, 1904, at the age of fifty- four years. Mr. Hanna pursued his early education in the public schools and afterward attended the Denmark Academy at Denmark, Iowa, Howe's Academy at Mount Pleasant and the Iowa Wesleyan University. He was reared upon the home farm and after completing his education took up his abode on a farm in the home neighborhood in 1878, comprising one hundred acres of land from the government, on which his grandfather settled when he removed from Virginia to this state. For a number of years thereafter Mr. Hanna carried on general agricultural pursuits, cultivating and improving his farm until the 3rd of March, 1891, when he sold that property and removed to Monmouth, Illinois. While living upon the farm he rebuilt the house, making it one of the best residences in the neighborhood. He made several radical changes for the convenience of raising stock and carrying on his farm work and in his business there was very successful. While living upon the farm he also served as township trustee of Danville township, Des Moines county, was a school director and also president of the board. In May, 1896, Mr. Hanna came to Oskaloosa and organized the Hanna Manufacturing Company of which he became president. A plant was located in the old Simpson church building, where the business was conducted until 1901, when a new building was erected on First street, the business having outgrown the original capacity. On the 1st of March, 1905, they removed to the old Crookham mill property and rebuilt the present building forty- four by one hundred and twenty feet and two stories in height with basement. They manufacture working men's clothing, including overalls and engineers' jackets. The business was originally carried on under the name of the Davenport Garment Company, but today is known as the Hawkeye Overall Company. The plant is equipped with the latest improved machinery, including two needle machines and a Reese button hole machine and altogether is one of the best equipped factories in the west. The company was incorporated for thirty thousand dollars with a paid-in capital of fifteen thousand dollars. Its product is sold in Texas, Oklahoma, Indian Territory, Kansas, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois and is officered as follows: J. C. Hanna, president; R. K. Davis, vice-president; and John A. Crookham, secretary and treasurer. On the 5th of February, 1878, Mr. Hanna was married to Miss Fanny E. Stanforth, of Cans county, Nebraska, who died October 15, 1882, at the age of twenty-eight years, leaving two children, Jessie M. and J. Elbert. He was again married September 1, 1886, his second union being with Miss Sarah J. Findley, by whom he has one child, Mildred F., born February 12, 1894. Mr. Hanna belongs to the Modem Woodmen camp. He is a progressive citizen, distinctively a man of affairs and one who has wielded a wide influence. Since coming to Oskaloosa his success has been uniform and rapid. Justice has ever been maintained his relation to patrons and employees and those who are in his service know that promotion will come in recognition of capability and loyalty. He has been watchful of all the details of his business and of all indications pointing toward prosperity and from the beginning has had an abiding faith in the ultimate success of his enterprise.


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

Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa

Mahaska County, Iowa Genealogy

Iowa Genealogy

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