m. 19 Feb 1852
Facts and Events
Joseph Myers, known universally in his family and in the community as "Joe," attended Oskaloosa College for a time before going to work, then worked most of his life for the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific Railway -- first as a "helper" at Rose Hill, Iowa, in 1879; then as a night telegraph operator at Marengo, Iowa, the same year; then as a fully qualified operator at Colfax and Malcolm, Iowa. He worked at Grinnell, Iowa, as a supervising operator in 1879-80. He became a freight agent at Atalissa, Iowa & Kellogg, Iowa, in 1881-87, then was the agent at Beatrice, Nebraska, in 1887-90. He became a traveling freight agent, 1890-93, then was the commercial agent at Wichita, Kansas, 1893-99, where his only child was born and where his wife died as a result of complications in the birth. He rose to be secretary to the general freight agent of the company in 1899 and served in that capacity until his own early death in 1904.S1
Joe became a freemason at Atalissa in 1880, and later advanced in rank to both 32d Degree (Scottish Rite) and Knight Templar (York Rite). Masonic membership was common among mid-level railroad men at this time, as it was in several other professions and skilled occupations.S1
Keokuk County, Iowa, 1885 state census:S2
I have not been able to locate Joseph Myers anywhere in Iowa in the 1900 census.
No will or probate file has been found in the Mahaska courthouse, perhaps because Joe was peripatetic in his employment and never owned even a house. Also because he moved around so often, Joe's daughter, Cordelia, lived with her grandmother, Margaret (Mattox) Leathers, after her own mother's death in childbirth. After her son-in-law's death in 1904, Margaret took over full responsibility for her granddaughter's upbringing (and, reportedly, spoiled her unmercifully).