Biography of Jabez Ashmore of Perry, Iowa

Jabez Ashmore
Jabez Ashmore

Jabez Ashmore, conducting an extensive and profitable plumbing and heating business at Perry, belongs to that class of men who, recognizing the fact that success is the reward of persistent, earnest labor, are putting forth strenuous effort to achieve prosperity. Such men constitute the real element in a city’s upbuilding and progress. Mr. Ashmore is a native of Trenton, New Jersey, born June 11, 1863, and was one of the nine children of John M. and Mary (Kersey) Ashmore. The father’s birth occurred in Trenton, New Jersey, in 1841 and he still lives in that city. The mother, however, born in Delaware, died in 1898, at the age of fifty-four years. Seven of their children still survive: Jabez, Samuel, Anna J., Raymond, John, Clarence and William A. The father worked in the car shops at Trenton for some time and was on the police force there for a number of years. He also worked for a rubber company in that city and has led a life of continuous business activity. In politics he has always been a stanch republican since the organization of the party. For his second wife he married Maria Mather.

Jabez Ashmore spent the first seventeen years of his life in the public schools and then started out in the business world, securing employment in a wire factory. He served a four years’ apprenticeship at a later date in learning the plumber’s trade and was afterward with F. S. Katzenbach & Company for one year in learning the plumbing and steamfitting trade. This made five years spent in qualifying himself for business life. He afterward worked for two years with other firms and at the age of twenty-five went into business on his own account. In 1891 he arrived in Perry and from October of that year until 1898 was in the employ of Thomas J. Gilbert. In the spring of 1899 he began business on his own account and has since installed the plumbing in many fine homes of Perry, including the residences of Josiah Petty, W. W. Cardell, D. J. Pattee, H. J. Holmes and W. M. Woodworth. He has put in the heating plants and the plumbing in the homes of W. F. Graham and L. F. Johnson and in the east ward schoolhouse, and has done similar work in the homes of A. Longshore and H. C. Hitchcock in Des Moines. He installed a pneumatic water system in the bank building at Rippey, Iowa, and a plumbing and heating plant in the Kester residence at Coon Rapids, Iowa;. He also superintended the installation of the plumbing in the home of Dr. Jewell of Coon Rapids, put in a hot water plant in the home of C. H. Kern at Perry and has done other work which shows how well he is regarded in his line of business in this part of the state. He is indeed an expert and well merits the liberal patronage which is accorded him. Mr. Ashmore’s place of business is now located in the basement of the Brown Block in Perry.

Mr. Ashmore is a member of Otley lodge, No. 299, A. F. & A. M., in which he has served as junior warden. He is also a member of the Eastern Star chapter, of which he is now worthy patron. He has been a member of the Shakespearean club and he belongs to the Unity church, in the work of which he is deeply and actively interested. He has long been an earnest student of the Bible, has been superintendent of the Sunday-school and in other ways has contributed to the growth and upbuilding of the church. His political allegiance is given to the democracy but he has neither time nor inclination for public office, preferring to give his undivided attention to his business affairs, in which he has met with splendid success, being now a leading representative of the commercial and industrial life of Perry.

Source: Past and Present of Dallas County, Iowa, by Robert F. Wood, S. J. Clarke Publishing Company Chicago, IL, 1907.

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