Biography of Lonson Seeley

Lonson Seeley, an industrious and successful farmer, was born in Monroe County, New York, in 1844. After serving in the Union army during the Civil War, he returned to Wisconsin where he pursued a career in agriculture. In 1868, he settled in South Dakota and focused on raising hogs and cattle, which proved more profitable than cultivating crops. Known for his diligence and perseverance, Seeley also contributed to the progress of his community, serving on the school board for over two decades. A devoted Republican and esteemed member of the Grand Army of the Republic, he and his family were valued members of the Methodist church.

Lonson Seeley, who is extensively engaged in the raising of hogs and cattle, and whose well-conducted business interests have brought him success, was born in Monroe County, New York, in 1844. His parents were Justice and Sarah (Sheldon) Seeley. The father was a farmer by occupation, and the parents had a family of eight children, four of whom are still living. In the common schools, Lonson Seeley obtained his education up to the age of eleven when he went to Wisconsin, where he resided until 1861. He then, prompted by patriotic spirit, enlisted in the Union army, becoming a member of Company B, Thirteenth Wisconsin Infantry. He served for four years and was a valiant soldier, never failing in the performance of any duty, whether it called him into the thickest of the fight or stationed him on the lonely picket line. In July 1865, he received an honorable discharge, having participated in many important battles which led to the preservation of the Union.

After being mustered out, Mr. Seeley returned to his home in Wisconsin, and throughout his entire business career, he has carried on agricultural pursuits. He was married on the 15th of October, 1871, to Miss Annie Faulk, a native of Wilmington, Delaware, and they have four children: Edward L., Mrs. Mary E. Price, Justice Burton, and Delia. They also lost one daughter, Hattie. The eldest son married Florence Rankin.

In the year 1868, Mr. Seeley arrived in South Dakota and settled upon the land where he now resides. He has been extensively engaged in the raising of hogs and cattle, finding that much more profitable than the cultivation of cereals. In his work, he has always been energetic and industrious, and what he now possesses has come to him as the just reward of his diligence and perseverance. He also engaged in hauling freight between Sioux City and the army posts for thirteen years. In public affairs, he has been public-spirited and active, assisting materially in the work of progress and improvement along many lines. He has been a member of the school board since its organization about twenty-five years ago, and the cause of education finds in him a warm friend. In politics, he has always been a staunch Republican, and he is a valued member of Philip Kearney Post, No. 7, Grand Army of the Republic. He and his family hold membership in the Methodist church, and they are worthy people held in high esteem throughout the community.


Robinson, Doane, History of South Dakota: together with mention of Citizens of South Dakota, [Logansport? IN] : B. F. Bowen, 1904.

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