JOSEPH H. RISELEY.
Since assuming office in 1913, Joseph H. Riseley has demonstrated his ability to handle the affairs of the postoffice
at Winthrop with system and dispatch, and has also proved a courteous and obliging postmaster. He was horn in Ulster
county, New York, on the 13th of April, 1848, a son of Albert and Margaret" (Bradstreet) Riseley, both natives
of the Empire state. The former engaged in moving houses and in various other lines of work and so provided for
the support of his family. He was married in August, 1844, to Margaret Bradstreet, a native of Delaware county,
New York, who was born March 11, 1820. In the fall of 1854 they came west and after two years spent in Ogle county,
Illinois, settled in this county and he took up forty acres of land in Middlefield township upon a land warrant.
As that was before the days of ramifying railroad connections he drove through from Ogle county, Illinois, to Buchanan
county, Iowa, with oxen. In addition to cultivating the land which he owned he rented a farm and began its operation.
He also broke the prairie sod for others, preparing many hundreds of acres in the county for cultivation, and built
a number of bridges for the county authorities. As he was able he bought more land until he became the owner of
six hundred and forty acres all situated in Middlefield township. However, he lost part of this through signing
his name as security on notes. He subsequently removed to Calhoun county, Iowa, where he lived retired for ten
or twelve years His wife passed away in Rockwell City, February 15, 1899, when seventy eight years and eleven months
of age. He later returned to New York and remarried, but after remaining in his native state for a time he returned
to Iowa, locating at Rockwell City and there passed his remaining days, his death occurring October 27, 1910. He
was liberal in his political views and, although he usually supported the republican party, upon occasion he voted
for the man irrespective of his party affiliation. He held a number of township offices and served as county supervisor
for three terms.
Joseph H. Riseley was a lad of eight years when brought to this county and the greater part of his boyhood was
passed in Middlefield township. As his strength increased he aided more and more in the work of the homestead and
aside from breaking much of their own land he broke many acres of prairie for others. He remained at home until
he was a young man of twentyeight or thirty years, but after his marriage he removed upon a quarter section of
land which his father gave him with the condition that he was to assume and pay off the indebtedness upon it. After
farming for some time he sold his place and started a creamery near Fort Dodge, Iowa, operating the concern for
a year, when he sold his interest to his partner and removed to Calhoun county, Iowa, where he engaged in the general
mercantile business for two years. At the expiration of that time he sold his store and returned to this county
and went into the livery and horse business in partnership with G. E. Titus, continuing in that relation for about
three years. He was then elected county supervisor and for six years devoted his entire attention to the work of
that office. He then purchased a small farm of thirty acres in this county, which he cultivated intensively and
greatly improved for two years, but, as he was appointed postmaster upon the 1st of September, 1913, he then located
in Winthrop. He quickly mastered the details of the work of the office and his services are giving satisfaction
to the people of the town.
Mr. Riseley was married on the 22d of February, 1876, to Miss Elma E. Hulett, a native of Wisconsin and a daughter
of Marshall and Margaret (Clark) Hulett, natives of Vermont and New York respectively. Her father was a farmer
by occupation and emigrated with his family to Wisconsin, where the family home was maintained until 1868, when
they removed to this county and he purchased two hundred acres of land lying in Liberty, Byron and Fremont townships.
He operated his land until his death, which occurred in June, 1903. His widow survived him for ten years, passing
away in 1913.
Mr. Riseley is a democrat and has served on the city council for a number of years. Fraternally he belongs to Byron
Lodge, No. 546, A. F. & A. M., and conforms his life to the high standards of ethics inculcated by that order.
His life has been one of useful activity, and he has not only made many friends, but has also retained their steadfast
regard and esteem.
History of Bachanan County, Iowa
And its People
By Harry Church and Katharyn J. Chappell
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Bachanan County, IA
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