Iowa News from the
Lytle, Montgomery & Gordon Families

Scrapbook articles

Transcribed by Cathy Labath

Page 1

I will be posting some articles starting with this one from a box of clippings,
letters, photos and genealogy chartes donated by Carol Faris on the Lytle,
Montgomery and Gordon families from primarily around Washington Co, IA.

Evening Journal
Washington, Washington, Iowa
May 25, 1912

Death Occurred in Des Moines Yesterday Evening About 6 O'Clock
Mrs. Lytle Spent Sixteen Years of Her Life in the United Presbyterian Field in
the Punjab.

     Washington relatives received word by long distance telephone yesterday
evening of the death of Mrs. Beth Gordon Lytle, which occurred yesterday evening
at about six o'clock at her home in Des Moines. Miss Grace Lytle will arrive
with the remains Monday morning on the 10 o'clock train and the funeral service
will be held at 3 o'clock that afternoon at the D.A. Moore home, 206 East Second
     Mrs. Lytle and daughter had made their home in Des Moines for the last two
years, going to that city from their former home in Monmouth so that Mrs. Lytle
could be near a specialist and receive treatment for her eyes, which had become
affected as a result of several years' illness of diabetes. Since the middle of
April she had been confined to her bed, until the disease finally resulted in
her death last evening.

Was Born in Ohio.
     Belmont county, Ohio, was the place of Mrs. Lytle's birth, on April 23,
1846. She was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Gordon, who came with their family
to Illinois when Mrs. Lytle was a child. The family home was near Monmouth until
1861, when the Gordon family came to this county, and lived in the vicinity of
Washington for many years.
     The subject of this sketch was married here to D.S. Lytle, and they lived
for a year on a farm north of town in the Grand Prairie neighborhood. Mr. Lytle
then received what he regarded as a call from God to the gospel ministry, and
Mr. and Mrs. Lytle moved to Monmouth, where Mr. Lytle entered Monmouth college.
After being graduated from the college he attended the theological seminary at
Xenia, Ohio. Within a few months after being graduated from the seminary he and
Mrs. Lytle sailed for India.

Sixteen Years in India.
     They entered on their work in the mission field in 1881, and after ten
years of service returned to America spending a year and a half in this country.
After laboring for six years more in India Mr. Lytle died after a brief illness
and was buried under the tropical skies  of the land to which he had given
sixteen long years of the best part of his life.
     Mr. Lytle's death occurred in the fall of 1899, and in the spring of the
following year Mrs. Lytle and her daughter, Miss Grace, who had been born in
India, came home to America and made their home in Washington for a time. The
place of Mr. and Mrs. Lytle's work in India was a district in the northern part
of the country known as the Punjab, where the missions of the United
Presbyterian church are located.

Lived in Monmouth.
     After spending a few years in Washington, Mrs. Lytle and daughter went to
Monmouth, Ill., where Miss Grace attended Monmouth college. After her graduation
they continued their residence in Monmouth, but spent one winter in Washington.
Two years ago they went to Des Moines and that city had since been their home.
     Mrs. Lytle was a member of the First United Presbyterian church during her
residence in Washington and at the time of her death was a member of the First
church, Des Moines, in the same denomination.
     She is survived by three sisters and two brothers, as follows: Mrs. Oliver
Hicks, James Gordon, Mrs. D.a. Moore  and Miss Ida Gordon, of Washington, and
Thomas Gordon of Stafford, Kansas. A brother, John Gordon, died in this city in
1886, and a sister, Mrs. Nancy Black, in 1895.
     Mrs. Lytle was  genuine consecrated Christian woman, one who was always
ready to do any sort of unselfish Christian service, and one whom it was a help
and an inspiration to be intimate with. She was especially zealous in the cause
of missions, and since her return from the mission field had been an active and
influential member of the women's missionary organizations of the United
Presbyterian church.
Newspaper Unknown, May 1912


     Mrs. Belle Gordon Lytle died at her home in Des Moines Friday evening, May
24, 1912, at 6 o'clock, of diabetes from which she had suffered for the past two
years. Mrs. Lytle had celebrated her 66th birthday the 23rd of last month. Her
childhood was spent at her birthplace, in Belmont county, Ohio, and near
Monmouth, Ill. At the age of  fifteen she came with her parents, Mr. and Mrs.
John Gordon, to this county and lived on a farm near Washington until Dec. 26,
1872, when she was married to D. Smith Lytle. Mr. Lytle decided to study for the
ministry, so they moved to Monmouth where they lived until he completed his
college course and then went to Xenia, Ohio, for three years while he attended
the theological seminary. Shortly after the completion of his theological course
the Rev. Mr. Lytle was appointed to go as a missionary to India. In 1881 they
took up their work at Pasrur inthe Sialkot district of the Punjab. Their one
daughter, Miss Grace Lytle, was born in the domain of Queen Victoria. The
following spring the mother and daughter returned to America and have since made
their home at Washington and Monmouth until two years ago when they moved to Des
Moines, where Mrs Lytle might have treatment from a specialist. Besides her
daughter, Grace, the deceased is survived by three sisters and two brothers,
they are: Mrs. Oliver Hicks, James Gordon, Mrs. D.A. Moore and Miss Ida Gordon,
of this city and Thos. Gordon of Stafford, Kan. A brother, John Gordon, died in
Nebraska in 1886 and a sister, Mrs. Nancy Black died in Kansas in 1895. Mrs.
Lytle was a member of the United Presbyterian church, and was an earnest
Christian woman. The remains were brought to Washington Monday morning
accompanied by Miss Grace Lytle, her uncle, Thos. Gordon, of Stafford, Kan. who
was at his sister's bedside for several days, and Mrs. Anderson, of Des Moines.
The funeral was held Monday afternoon at the D.A. Moore home and was conducted
by the Rev. W.O. Fisher, assisted by the Rev. S.B. Huston, of Farmington, Pa.,
and the Rev. W.R. Sawhill.

Newspaper Unknown -
(probably Washington Evening Journal)
Date Unknown -
(sometime in 1929 per WPA gravestones records)

Moved to County in 1855 - Married During the Civil War.

     Mrs. T.L. Montgomery, whose death occurred yesterday morning at eight
forty-five at her home on East Main street, was a pioneer of Washington county,
living here since 1855, when she came with her parents and settled in Jackson
township north of town.
     Her maiden name was Catharine Lytle and she was the daughter of Robert and
Eliza Smith Lytle. She was born in Indiana county, Pennsylvania and came here
with her parents, while she was still a young girl. It was here she was married
to Captain T.L. Montgomery in 1863 before the close of the civil war.
     Mrs. Montgomery was never strong physically, but with a determination and
will power which carried through many hard situations, and in the early days
when men and women lost their courage and optimism, she retained both to an
amazing degree. To the very last her mind was clear, her hearing and her sight
very good. She loved the young people, all  their interests were hers, and she
took a keen pleasure in being part of all their activities. She loved life but
was ready to go when the time came.
     Two years ago, she fell and broke her hip and had been confined to her bed
ever since, but she was a patient sufferer. Cheerful always, and her keen
appreciation made her a splendid companion. She was a life long member of the
United Presbyterian church, where she lived every day.
     Mr. and Mrs. Montgomery and their family moved into town in 1896 and this
had been  their home ever since, the husband dying in April 1907. For many years
Mrs. Montgomery and one daughter, Miss Althea, a teacher in the high school,
lived together. There was a peculiarly sympathetic bond between them and their
home was a happy one.
     Six children survive, W.L. Montgomery of Davenport and five daughters, Ella
of Mansfield, Ohio, Mrs. R.P. Taylor of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Mrs. G.E. Davis of
Keokuk, Iowa, Mrs. W.G. Masson of Washington and Althea at home. There are eight
grandchildren and one brother, J.M. Lytle of Washington survives.
     Rev. Willard Wylie of Newton, Iowa, who was for many years her pastor, will
have charge of the funeral services in the absence of Rev. Fulton. The services
will be held from the home at 1009 East Main street at ten thirty Saturday
morning and interment will be in Elm Grove cemetery. It is the wish of the
family that flowers be omitted.

Washington Evening Journal
Thursday, April 24, 1930

Turned on the Gas - Body Not Found for Nearly a Day - Ill Health Cause.

     This community is still dazed from the shock received last yesterday
afternoon when it was learned that Blanche Gordon of this city, had taken her
life in an apparent house at Iowa City. Her body was found about three o'clock
and word immediately sent to her mother and brother here.
     Miss Gordon went to Iowa City with her brother, Roy, early Tuesday morning
to consult a specialist. The doctor recommended that she obtain a room there and
secure light work until her condition improved. He thought this would greatly
relieve her mind. Roy returned home that afternoon and Blanche secured a room at
an East Washington street apartment house.

Turns on the Gas.
     Her body was found in the room with all the doors and windows shut and the
gas turned on. It was thought that during a spell of despondency Blanche had
decided to end her life.
     Occupants of other apartments smelled gas fumes but thought nothing more of
it. The fumes were again noticed at 2:30 by P.T. Whitlock who shoved the key
from the lock and found Miss Gordon dead.
     Coroner George Maresh was immediately called but decided that no inquest
was necessary. He said that the death had taken place about eight o'clock the
previous evening. Her body was found lying on the bed and fully dressed.

Lived Here Most of Life.
     Blanche Gordon was born October 26, 1885 at Ewing, Nebraska and her father
died when she was but five years of age. With the exception of four or five
years her entire life had been spent in this community, where she was known to
most every one.
     She graduated from the local high school and later the Washington Academy
where she was a most unusual student. She followed the course in accounting and
public speaking and was very successful in both.
     Her first position in this city was with the City Water Works, where she
was employed for a number of years. Following this she worked as a bookkeeper at
the Journal office, a position which she has held until forced to give up active
work on account of ill health. Four years ago she permitted her name to be
placed on the republican ballot for the office of county recorder and was
defeated by only a few votes. Since then Miss Gordon has been associated with an
insurance company.
    Two years ago she had a very serious operation which was followed by a
general break in health, and a very nervous condition that she could not

Very Jovial Person.
     It was Blanche's disposition to always have a bright smile for most every
one and at all times. Her entire life had been happy and her jovial ways won for
her many friends. Besides, she was most devoted to her mother and the home. She
was always busy doing something useful and took a prominent part in the affairs
of the community. Her keen vision and ability made it possible for her to be
most successful in several business ventures.
     She is survived by her aged mother, Mrs. Hattie Gordon, and one brother,
Roy, both of whom live at 918 East Main Street. One brother, Bert, died here
four years ago. Blanche was a member of the United Presbyterian church.

Funeral to be Held Friday.
     Funeral services are announced for Friday afternoon at 2:30 from the Jones
funeral home, with Rev. D. Chalmers Fulton, pastor of the United Presbyterian
church, officiating. Burial will take place in Elm Grove cemetery.

Washington Evening Journal

Funeral Services to be Held Tuesday - Burial at Elm Grove

     Funeral services will be held at two o'clock Tuesday afternoon at Sherman's
funeral home for Mrs. Hattie Gordon, widow of John Gordon. The services will be
in charge of Rev. D. Chalmers Fulton, pastor of the United Presbyterian church,
followed by burial in Elm Grove cemetery.
     Mrs. Gordon, who was nearly 92 years old died at ten o'clock Saturday night
at her home, 918 East Main street. She had been failing in health for several
years, but had been bedfast only two days before her death.
     Hattie Snider was born at Wheeling, West Virginia, August 12, 1844. She
came with her father, Abraham Snider, when a small girl and they lived first on
a farm in the Eureka neighborhood south of Washington.
     She was married to John Gordon, May 11, 1875, and Mr. Gordon died in 1889.
Following their marriage they lived on a farm northwest of town and then moved
to Nebraska and his death occurred there. Since then the home had been in
     She was a member of the United Presbyterian church.
     Surviving is one son, Roy Gordon of Washington. A daughter, Blanche, died
in 1930 and a son, Bert, in 1925.

Newspaper Unknown
Date unknown, but probably 1936

Thomas D. Gordon

     Thomas D. Gordon, 82, retired harness maker and resident of the city 17
years, died at 2:45 o'clock yesterday afternoon at his home. He had been
seriously ill three days and ailing for the past year.
     Mr. Gordon was born May 15, 1854 in Denny, Warren county, Ill. and
received his education in schools of that vicinity. He married Miss Clara
Long in Kirkwood, Ill. May 19, 1878, and for many years the couple resided
in Monmouth where Mr. Gordon operated a harness business.
    During the World war, Mr. Gordon was employed in the harness shop at
Rock Island arsenal but retired 15 years ago. He was a member of lodge No.
133, Odd Fellows of Moline, and was of Presbyterian faith.
     Surviving are the widow, a daughter, Mrs. Olive Siegfried, of Moline;
two brothers, Daniel Gordon of Kirkwood and John Gordon of Monmouth; and a
sister, Mrs. Della Yeomans of Monmouth.
     The body was removed to the Hodgson and Hoban mortuary, Rock Island,
where funeral services will be held at 1:30 o'clock Saturday afternoon. The
Rev. William R. Hodgson, pastor of First Congregational church, Moline, will
officiate. Burial will be in Kirkwood cemetery. The body was returned home
this afternoon and will again be taken to the mortuary at 10 o'clock in the

Washington Evening Journal
Feb 19, 1947

     Ida Evelyn Gordon, 90 years old died at 12:20 today at the Al Logan
residence, 1203 North Second avenue, where she had been cared for the last
several weeks.
     Funeral services will be held at 10:30 Friday morning at Sherman's
funeral home, in charge of Dr. George Kerr.
     Miss Gordon was born Dec. 26, 1856, in Belmont county, Ohio, a daughter
of John and Margaret (Campbell) Gordon.
     She came to this county with her parents in 1861. They had lived in
Illinois for a short time after coming west from Ohio. She had lived here
since except for a few years spent in Kansas. She was the youngest and last
of a family of eight.
     Miss Gordon was a member of the United Presbyterian church, and her
interests were centered largely in her church. She was a member of the
Second United Presbyterian church for years before its merger with the First
     Survivors include a number of nieces and nephews.

Washington Evening Journal
March 20, 1942

Roy R. Gordon Resident Here 52 Years, Dies.

     Roy Ralston Gordon, 65 years of age, died at 6:30 yesterday evening at
his home, 918 East Main street. He had been seriously ill for nine days but
in failing health for the last year and a half.
     Funeral services are announced for two o'clock Monday afternoon at the
L.A. Jones funeral home, to be conducted by his pastor, Rev. George Kerr of
the United Presbyterian church, assisted by Rev. Alfred Trenerry of the
Baptist church. Burial will be in Elm Grove cemetery.
     Mr. Gordon was born April 1, 1876, on a farm six miles north of
Washington, a son of John and Hattie (Snider) Gordon. The family moved to
Nebraska when he was about ten years old, his father being taken by death
while his family lived in that state. A year later they returned to
Washington and he lived the remainder of his life here. He had been a
resident of Washington for 52 years.
     He took care of his invalid mother for eight years, until her death on
July 12, 1936. A brother, Bert, died in 1935 and a sister, Blanche, in 1930.
     April 17, 1937 he was married to Mabel Carr Gamble, and is survived by
his widow and two step-children, Clara Matilda and John Pressley Gamble.

Washington Evening Journal
Probably 1943.
Ella Montgomery Taken by Death.
Death Occurs Last Night at Davenport - Funeral at Church Saturday Morning.

     Ella Montgomery, 78, a long-time resident of Washington, died last
night in a rest home at Davenport. She had been ill for several years.
     Funeral services will be held at the United Presbyterian church
Saturday morning at eleven o'clock, conducted by her pastor, Rev. George
Kerr of the United Presbyterian church, with burial in Elm Grove cemetery.
Funeral arrangements are in charge of Sherman's funeral home.
     Miss Montgomery was born April 30, 1865, in Jackson township, northeast
of Washington, a daughter of Captain T.L. Montgomery and Catherine (Lytle)
     She taught in the rural schools of the county and later as a missionary
of the United Presbyterian church. She spent ten years working among the
Warm Spring Indians at Warm Springs, Oregon and several years in the mission
field at Paint Creek, Tenn. Later she was a city missionary at Alliance and
Mansfield, Ohio, until forced to give up this work because of failing
health. She returned to her home in Washington and later was cared for in
the home at Davenport. Her life was spent in the service of others.
     Surviving Miss Montgomery are one brother, William H. Montgomery of
Davenport, and four sisters, Miss Althea and Mrs. W.J. Masson of Washington,
Mrs. R.P. Taylor of Cedar Rapids and Mrs. C.E. Davis of Lafayette, Ind.

Washington Evening Journal
December 1945

Robert Masson, 25, Dies Sunday

    Robert Montgomery Masson, 25, son of Dr. and Mrs. W.J. Masson, died
early Sunday morning at the county hospital. Three years ago he was
seriously ill, but recovered a large measure of his health and in September
1944 he re-entered the dental college at the state university after being
compelled to give up his studies because of ill health. Recently he again
became ill and came home two weeks ago from Iowa City.
     Funeral services will be held at two o'clock Wednesday afternoon at the
L.A. Jones funeral home, in charge of his pastor, Rev. George Kerr of the
United Presbyterian church, assisted by Rev. Basil McBee of the Associate
Presbyterian church. Burial will be in Elm Grove cemetery.
    Born in Washington August 4, 1920, he was the son of Dr. W.J. and Dora
Montgomery Masson. he attended the Washington schools, being graduated from
Washington high school in 1939 and from Washington junior college in 1941.
He was prominent in social and musical activities in both schools and was a
member of the high school marching band that played in the regional contest
at Minneapolis and was a cheer leader in both the high school and college.
He was also a member of the Washington Municipal Band.
     After finishing at the junior college he attended the University of
Iowa until compelled by ill health to give up his work. But when he became
better he again entered the university and at the time of his death was
enrolled in the college of dentistry. He was a pledge of Delta Sigma Delta
dental fraternity.
     Robert was a member of the United Presbyterian church and actively
participated in its organizations. He had been employed at the Y.M.C.A. and
was deeply interested in its work. He liked people and his genial,
democratic spirit made him popular with the young and old.
     Surviving are his parents; two brothers, William J. Masson, of Iowa
City and Sgt. David J. Masson of the United States army, stationed at
Madison, Wis., and two sisters, Mrs. Edward R. Barker of Washington and Mrs.
Frederick Smith of Cleveland, Ohio.

Washington Evening Journal
December 1945

Althea Montgomery, Former Instructor for High School and Junior College

     Althea E. Montgomery, one of Washington county's best known teachers,
died early today at St. Luke's hospital in Cedar Rapids. She came from
Knoxville, Tennessee, last month to attend the funeral of her nephew, Robert
Mason, and following that she went to the home of her sister, Mrs. Pearl
Taylor, at Cedar Rapids for an extended visit. An illness developed and she
was taken to St. Luke's hospital a week ago, A heart condition was ascribed
as the cause of death.
     Perhaps no teacher in this community ever achieved a wider acquaintance
and greater respect than Miss Montgomery. She began her teaching in the
rural schools of Washington county, was an instructor for six years at
Sterling college in Kansas, served as principal of the high school at
Blanchard, Iowa, for eight years, and taught for many years in the
Washington high school and the Washington junior college.
     Two years ago she retired from her teaching activities here, but a call
came from Knoxville college at Knoxville, Tenn, and she went there under the
emergency of war needs to head their English department, a position she held
at the time of her death. She was a graduate of the Washington academy, the
Iowa State Teachers college, and held a master's degree from the State
University of Iowa. In 1930, Miss Montgomery made a trip to Europe.
     During all of her teaching career she always found time for church and
community activities. She was especially devoted to the United Presbyterian
church, where she taught in the Sabbath school for many years. She was also
active in the Y.W.C.A., served as its president, and was deeply interested
in all the activities. Among the other local organizations holding her
special interest were the 19th Century, the Fortnightly and the P.E.O.
     Althea Elizabeth Montgomery was born May 14, 1879, at Washington, Iowa.
She was the daughter of Captain Thomas L. Montgomery and Catherine Lytle
Montgomery. Surviving are a brother, William H. Montgomery of Davenport,
three sisters, Mrs. Pearl Taylor of Cedar Rapids, Mrs. W.J. Masson of
Washington and Mrs. George E. Davis of Lafayette, Indiana. There are several
nieces and nephews.
     Funeral plans are awaiting word from relatives and  will be announced
later. Arrangements are in charge of the L.A. funeral home.

Washington Evening Journal
December 1945

    Althea Montgomery was called home by the death of one of her favorite
nephews, Robert Masson, a few weeks ago. She had a cold when she started
from Tenn. which did not get any better and finally developed into flu. What
she knew, but did not tell her folks, was that she had a heart leakage.
     She went home to Cedar Rapids with her sister, Pearl Taylor, and did
not get better, but it was days before they could get her into the hospital.
The doctor told them to watch her heart. On Wednesday her folks from here
visited with her and she was doing well. On Thursday morning the nurse was
giving her a bath, turned away for a moment and when she looked again the
end had come.
     There was no worthwhile activity here of which she was not a part. We
used to wonder when she had a fulltime teaching position how she found time,
to be president of the Y.W., to teach a Sunday school class, to prepare some
of the best book reviews ever given here. In addition, until she left here,
she kept her apartment. Her sister Ella lived with her for months. She took
care of her mother and endeared herself to everyone she knew. 19th Century
Club, P.E.O., her church, she was active in all of them. It does not seem
possible that she is gone forever.


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