from Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa by Manoah Hedge The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1906
Past and Present of Mahaska Co.,IA by Manoah Hedge(John Cambria Williams) - JOHN CAMBRIA WILLIAMS, b. 1851 Hon. John Cambria Williams, attorney at law and mayor of Oskaloosa, whose personal popularity is shown by his re-election to his present position in a republican city; while he is a stalwart advocate of the democracy, has in his public life demonstrated a breadth of vision and a singleness of purpose that are above partisanship, while personal advancement is ever made subservient to the general good. His life record began in Naperville, Illinois, in 1851. His father, Robert Williams, born in Wales, came to the United States in 1850, settling in DuPage county, Illinois, while soon afterward he removed to McHenry county, making his home near Woodstock, where he purchased a farm, upon which he spent his remaining days, his death occurring in 1873, when he was seventy-eight years of age. He was a communicant of the Episcopal church and in his political views was a republican. He married Harriet Parry, who was born in Wales in 1809 and died in 1868. They were married in Wales and like her husband, Mrs. Williams was a devoted Episcopalian. Unto them were born three children, but two died in the little rock ribbed country from whence the parents came to the new world. John C. Villiams was a student in the common schools of Illinois and was graduated from Penn College in 1877. He taught school for a time and was elected county superintendent of schools in 1877, filling the position for one term. He had come to Oskaloosa in 1872, and after devoting the succeeding eight years to educational work, he entered upon the study of law in 1880 in the office of Bolton & McCoy, with whom he read for two years, being admitted to the bar in 1882. Prior to coming to Iowa he had engaged in the manufacture of cheese and in Oskaloosa he established the first cheese factory in Mahaska county, but after his admission to the bar he concentrated his energies and efforts upon the practice of law and has since been a successful and able member of the Oskaloosa bar. He first entered into partnership with Judge L. C. Blanchard, the relationship continuing for two years, and for four years he was in partnership with W. R. Nelson, but for the past fifteen years he has practiced alone. He prepared his cases with care and precision, presents his cause with force, his deductions following in logical sequence so that the trend of his reasoning is clear and he seldom fails to win the verdict desired. In 1878 Mr. Williams was married to Miss Lillian Boyce, who was born in Salem, Iowa, in 1859, a daughter of Titus and Lydia C. (Dorland) Boyce, the father one of the pioneer farmers of Henry county, Iowa. Mr. and Mrs. Williams had two daughters and a son but the daughters, Bertha Harriett and Helen Louise, are both deceased. The surviving child is Walter R. Both Mr. and Mrs. Williams are members of the Episcopal church and Mr. Williams belongs to the Masonic fraternity, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and the Knights of Pythias lodge. In politics he is a democrat, earnest and stalwart in defense of the party and its principles. Various political honors have been conferred upon him and the duties thereby devolving upon him have been ably discharged. He was county superintendent of schools for one term, city solicitor for three terms and is now serving for the second term as mayor of Oskaloosa, giving to the city a public spirited, practical and progressive administration. He has made a close study of its needs and possibilities and has met the one and taken advantage of the other to promote the city's substantial development. He is also a member of the public library board and a member of the board of the Commercial Club, which draws its membership from the best class of citizens of Oskaloasa, men who are banded together to advance the city's welfare along lines of general improvement. Twice he has received the nomination of his party for district judge and the fact that the republican majority is normally from five to six thousand and that he was beaten the first time by only one hundred and twenty eight votes and the second time by five hundred votes, thus running far ahead of his ticket, indicates his personal popularity and the esteem in which he is held in this section of Iowa. He is interested in all those affairs which are a matter of civic pride and he stands for opposition to misrule in municipal government and embodies in his public work a rare and happy combination of the idealist and the practical reformer.
Past and Present of Mahaska County, Iowa
Mahaska County, Iowa Genealogy