biography from Portrait & Biographical Album of Mahaska Co., Iowa, 1887
Poultney Loughridge, deceased, was born in McKeesport, Pa., May 24, 1800, and was the son of James and Jane (Poultney) Loughridge. He removed with his parents from Pennsylvania to Richaland County, Ohio, and located near Mansfield. he was married in Richland County, March 27, 1827, to Miss Maria Ann Mitchell, a daughter of John and Mary (Black) Mitchell, natives of Pennsylvania. She was born in Knox County, Ohio, March 15, 1810, and removed with her husband shortly after marriage to Huron County, Ohio. Of eleven children born to them, seven are now living; the first seven were born in Ohio, the others in Mahaska county: John M. is a farmer and minister in Appanoose County, Iowa; Emily J., widow of James W. Correll, is in Beaver Head County, Mont.; Joseph J. has a stock ranch in Montana, and is a gold miner; James is a farmer in Spring Creek Township, this county; Thomas is a farmer in Montana; Mary is the wife of Philip Shaver, a farmer residing in Poweshiek county; Margaret E. married George Ritchie, a butcher in Hardin County, and is deceased; Albert, a minister in the Baptist Church, and also a teacher, resides in Burlington, Iowa; he was for nearly ten years a missionary to India, and brought home with him from that country four of their idols, a peculiar musical instrument, and many other curiosities; Edmund F. died at the age of ten years. Poultney Loughridge came to Iowa in the fall of 1842, stopping temporarily in Washington County, and in the spring of 1843, came to Spring Creek Township, in this county, and took up a large tract of land. In addition to his wife and seven chidren, there came with him his wife's brother, Robert Mitchell, another brother, Edmund Mitchell, his wife and one child, and his wife's cousin, John McAllister, with his wife and four children. Upon the land he originally entered, he resided continuously until his death, which occurred Oct. 15, 1874. The farm of nearly 200 acres, with all of its fine improvements, is the property of his widow, who yet survives. When they first located in this county, it was yet in possession of the Indians, and while waiting for the land to come into market, they were obligataed to avoid the soldiers in order to hold their claim until the proper time came to enter it as provided by law. He was really one of the first of all the pioneers in this county. The two brothers and cousin of Mrs. Loughridge all located claims at the same time, and eventually secured them after the Indians had left. Mrs. Loughridge was one of the first white women in this county, and remembers very distinctly the Indians, who were plenty in those days. The first election held in Mahaska county was at the log cabin on their claim, and the box in which the ballots were cast is now in possession of Dr. D. A. Hoffman, of Oskaloosa. We who live in these latter days scarcely appreciate, if we ever think of the hardships and privations endured by the early settlers in this new country. The staff of life in those days was corn bread, and this, without change, Mr. and Mrs. Loughridge lived upon for eighteen months, and their neighbors fared no better than they. The nearest mills were at Farmington, Burlington and English River, the latter fifteen miles from Iowa city. At one time in the spring the water was so high in the streams that it took three weeks to get a grist from the nearest mill. In the meantime they lived on hominy, which they pounded in a large block. This was common property, to which all the neighbors came, and it was kept in active use most of the twenty-four hours of the day. Poultney Loughbridge was an abolitionist in his early days, and later on affiliated with the Republican party. He was a prominent and leading member of the United Presbyterian Church. Since his decease his widow has removed to Oskaloosa, and resides in a comfortable home in the southeast part of the city. Mr. Lougliridge was a man of more than average ability, and of great force of character, just the material of which sturdy pioneers are made, and to men of his mold of mind and strength of character, this country is indebted for its remarkable development. For years it had been marked upon the maps as a barren desolate waste unfit for the habitation of civilized men. Courageous men, however, spied out the land, settled upon it and found it a fruitful soil, yielding a thousand-fold to the labor of the skillful toiler, and because of this endured the privations incident to life in a new country, that others might reap the benefit of their sacrifices. Marble monuments may not mark their last resting-places as testimonials of gratitude from those who have followed after, yet their names are engraved upon the tablets of memory and the remembrance of their early trials is transmitted from one generation to another as a tradition of the past, thus building for them a monument more imperishable than brass.
Portrait & Biographical Album of Mahaska Co., Iowa, 1887
Mahaska County, Iowa Genealogy