from Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa by Manoah Hedge The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1906
John P. Hiatt, one of the pioneers in the real estate, loan and brokerage business in Oskaloosa, in which he yet continues with a large clientage, was born in Henry county, Indiana, in 1842. His father, William Hiatt, was a native of Ohio. The ancestors came from Scotland to America at an early day and settled in Virginia. They were members of the Friends church. William Hiatt removed from Ohio to Indiana about 1830 and in early manhood his attention was given to cabinet making, while in later years he followed farming. He remained in Indiana until the fall of 1864, when he removed to Oskaloosa, where, retiring from active business life, he enjoyed a well earned rest until his death, which occurrred in 1884, when he was eighty years of age. He was a birthright member of the Friends church and his study of the political situation of the country led him to give his early support to the whig party, while later he joined the ranks of the republican party. He held minor township offices and was always interested in local advancement and progress. He possessed more than ordinary literary taste and was a great lover of hooks, which kept him well informed concerning the literature of ancient and modern times as well as all subjects of general information. Industrious in his business affairs he prospered and eventually gained a competency. He married Martha Pressnall, who was born in North Carolina and was of English ancestry. She, too, was a birthright member of the Friends church, and she died in that faith in 1893, at the age of eighty nine years. In the family of this worthy couple were nine children: Julia A., now deceased; Abigail, the wife of Isaac F. Kenworthy, a retired farmer living at Whittier, California; Richard J., who died in 1900; Martha H., the wife of Valentine M. Farr, a gardener of Oskaloosa; Mary M., the deceased wife of Truman Cooper, of San Jose, California, a minister of the Friends church; John P.; William P., deceased; Lydia J., the widow of Anderson McGrew and a resident of Manchester, Iowa; and Elizabeth E., deceased. John P. Hiatt, spending his boyhood days in the usual manner of farm lads, worked in the fields through the summer months and attended the country schools in the winter seasons. He was also a student in the academy at Spiceland, Iowa, and he remained upon a farm in Madison township until 1879, having purchased land there. He engaged in its cultivation and im provement until the year mentioned, when he came to Oskaloosa and opened a real estate, loan and brokerage office. He has continued in the business to the present time and is practically the pioneer in this line in Oskaloosa. He owns a farm of two hundred and sixty acres in Scott township, also eighty six acres in Harrison township and a business block in Oskaloosa. He likewise owns two residence properties on north Third street in addition to his home residence and is now a man of wealth, having conducted a profitable business and at the same time increased his posssessions through judicious investments in real estate. In 1873 Mr. Hiatt was married to Miss Lourana E. Elliott, who was born in North Carolina in 1849, and is a daughter of Nathan and Mary A. Elliott. Her parents, who were of English descent, removed to Indiana about 1854 and were farming people there. They were identified with the Friends church. Mr. and Mrs. Hiatt have one daughter, Anna, who is now attending Penn College in Oskaloosa, and the parents and daughter are all members of the Friends church. Mr. Hiatt exercises his right of franchise in support of the men and measures of the republican party and has held various township offices, but has never been a politician in the sense of office seeking. Possessing natural ability and developing his latent powers by use, his success in his business life since coming to Oskaloosa has been uniform and rapid. His close application and his excellent management have brought him the degree of prosperity which he today enjoys.
Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa
Mahaska County, Iowa Genealogy