James Abiah Trumbell Bio

James A. Trumbell, a general farmer of Avery township, Hancock county, living on section 29, was born in Pennsylvania on the 28th of January 1867, a son of Cornelius and Adeline (Smith) Trumbell, natives of Pennsylvania, who became early residents of Belmond, Iowa. Both are still living, the father having reached the age of seventy-four years, while the mother is now eighty-one years of age.

James A. Trumbell acquired his early education in the district schools of Pennsylvania, which he attended until he reached the age of seventeen years, and then accompanied his parents on their removal westward to this state. He assisted his father in the development and further improvement of the home farm for five years and when twenty-two years of age started out on his own.



George Walters Elder Bio

George Walters Elder was born May 6, 1822 at Clearwater, Pennsylvania, a son of James Elder and Margaret Walters. George married Emily Bonsil, first and there were five children by this union: Laura, who died as a child; Walter; Dora; Thomas and Marion.

George’s second marriage was to Margaret Caroline McNutt, a daughter of William McNutt and Mary or Caroline Creswell. She was born January 10, 1836 in Blairsville, Indiana County, Pennsylvania. George did not fight in the Civil War as he disapproved of war as a means of settling disputes and said his family needed him.

George and Margaret Caroline had 10 children:
George Newton, born August 20, 1859; William Gilbert, born March 4, 1861; Mary Elizabeth, born September 16, 1862; James Franklin, born June 3, 1865; Margaret Emily, born March 12, 1867; Mabel, born November 11, 1868 (died as a child); John Blake, born September 5, 1870, died April 9, 1872; Carrie Kelly, born September 16, 1872, married James A. Trumbell; Ruth, born June 3, 1874; Adrian, born October 5, 1876.

Some of George brothers had already settled in Hancock County so George and his family settled in Upper Grove, Iowa, later the name changed to Goodell, in the spring of 1864. George bought an improved and richly wooded farm on the Iowa River from Benoi and Abigail Haskins on May 3, 1864 for $3,000.00. The homestead had a two-story walnut log house and barn. There were about 40 acres in timber and 180 acres in rich, river bottom land. The Elder property remained within the family until sold in the early to mid 1980’s.

The Elder family made their own soap in the spring, in a kettle outdoors. George Elder was known for his famous apple butter made with pumpkin, that lasted all winter.

George died September 6, 1896 in Goodell, Hancock County, Iowa and is buried at Amsterdam Cemetery.

Carrie Elder Trumbell Bio

Carrie Elder was known as Caroline and Cora Kelly Elder. She was born September 16, 1872 at the Elder farm in Avery, Hancock County, Iowa. She was living with her parents and siblings per the 1880 Federal Census and 1885 Iowa State Census. She married James Abiah Trumbell, who was born in 1867 at Black Creek, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, August 11, 1891 per his obituary in the Hancock County, Iowa newspaper dated, 1949. In 1891 he lived in Belmond, Wright County, Iowa. Carrie and James had a son, James Sumner who was born April 1, 1894 at Goodell. According to the 1900 Iowa Census, Carrie and James were living at Rodman, Fern Valley, Palo Alto, Iowa, on a farm that they purchased in 1896.  Another son, Harry Elder, was born June 22, 1898. The family farmed in Rodman for 6 years before buying Carrie’s mother and father’s farm in Avery, Hancock, Iowa. The 1905 Iowa State Census lists the Trumbell’s located in Goodell. They had a daughter, Florence M. born December 26, 1906 at the family farm. The 1910 Federal Census has the Trumbell’s still living at the former Elder farm. Sumner is 16 years of age and listed as a farm laborer. The family have a servant living in the household with them.

On the 1920 Federal Census, the Trumbell’s were still farming the former Elder homestead. Sumner had moved out and was married to a woman named Frances. Harry is listed as a farm laborer, age 21 years old and living on the family farm. Florence is still at school. Per James’ obituary, the Trumbell’s moved to Mason City in 1921 where they remained for the rest of their days. The 1925 Iowa State Census confirms the Trumbell’s had moved to Mason City. Harry had left home and married Nettie Johnson. Florence was still single, living at home at 18 years old. James and Carrie were 57 and 52 respectively. James and Carrie were not found in the 1930 Federal Census. Sumner and his wife, Frances are living in Ell, Hancock County, Iowa in the 1930 Federal Census. Harry Elder was found at Avery, Hancock County, Iowa farming, probably taking over the farm after his mother and father moved to Mason City. He is living with his wife and daughter. In 1930, Florence had just married Harry Pringnitz  and they were living at Liberty Township, Hancock, Iowa and farming. After 1930, Carrie attended a family reunion at a Clear Lake, Iowa park with 6 other siblings about 1935.

James Trumbell died at Mason City January 25, 1949, just days before his 82nd birthday. He is buried at the Amsterdam Cemetery, Goodell, Hancock County, Iowa. Carrie died at home September 27, 1956 after a long illness, according to her obituary at age 84.

William G. Elder Bio

William G. Elder

William G. Elder (Will) was born 11 Mar 1861 at Black Lick, Indiana, PA. He was the second child of George W. and Margaret C. Elder and the 7th child of George W. Elder. Will traveled west with his family in 1864 to Avery Township, Hancock County, Iowa. According to the 1870 and 1880 Federal Census, Will remained on the farm with his family. Eight other siblings still lived at home as well as Margaret’s father, William McNutt who was 71. Will was listed as going to school. According to the 1885 Iowa State Census, William is living at Concord, Hancock County with his uncle James Marion Elder. He is listed as employed as a laborer. In 1895, Will is living in Goodell , perhaps with his parents who have moved to town from the farm. Per the 1900 Federal Census and the 1905 Iowa State Census, Will is living with his mother, Margaret in Goodell with an adopted sister, Lizzie. Will is listed as a day laborer for the railroad. According to his obituary, Will moved to Oklahoma City in 1908. Per the 1910 Census, he is a lodger, still single and his occupation is listed as a laborer. According to the 1920 Census, Will is still in Oklahoma City working as a laborer at a packing house. Per Will’s obituary, he died at Oklahoma City on December 28th, 1924 at age 63 years. His remains were shipped to Goodell and internment was at the Amsterdam Cemetery, Goodell. The cemetery records report he died of heart trouble. Will never married.


Welcome to the Knapper & Trumbell Family History blog!

This is the story of my husband’s parents, Maurice Keith Trumbell and Darlene Jean Knapper.  In addition to the stories, I will be posting photos and documents too.

Separate pages for Photos and Surnames is listed above. In the photos, there are several pages copied from two very old family Bibles. Unfortunately, I have not been able to translate the pages, so would appreciate any help in that matter.

If you have any suggestions, questions or find a connection, please leave a comment.

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy your stay!