Genealogy Trails
Pottawattamie County, Iowa


Kanesville was the original name of Council Bluffs. These articles are from the time of Kanesville

Cholera In Old Council Bluffs

There has been several cases of cholera in our town this season, but not enough to create the alarm which at present exists. There has been but twelve deaths since the commencement of the season.

The following people have died of cholera since the 1st of May:
Mr. Richard Hewitt, Mrs. Hannah Martin, Mr. Roberts late of Ohio, B.J. Bigler son of Jacob G. Bigler, Mrs. E.P. Cromby, Mrs. Sara Evans, Mrs. Miffins' youngest child, T.B. Parker, Kelsey Barton's youngest child, Miss Elvira Sherman and Mrs. Eliabeth Kelting. A number of the above have died more from fright than actual cholera.

We deprecate in the strongest terms the practice that is prevalent among the female portion of our community going from house to another mourning over the sick and diseased, and in time of cholera it is entirely wrong, for persons are naturally timid. It commences upon the mind, their mind runs down, and then imagination is very powerful, which brings on the diarrhea, and the system becomes relaxed, and capable of receiving any kind of disease. Although we may feel to mourn the loss of friends near and dear, we cannot approve at this time of persons going from house to house to mourn. If you feel like mourning, wait till the season is more healthy, and no cholera lurking in our midst, but at this time, when it is sickly, keep up your spirits; be cheerful to all around you, which is the best remedy against this "overflowing scourge and desolating sickness." It has been reported abroad that eight deaths were occurring here daily, which are about as many as have occurred for three months.

Since writing the above there has four more deaths occurred by cholera: Mrs. Lewis Robius, Mrs. Allee Moody, Janette Huntington of Cholera infantum, and Seth Sherman. At present there is no new cases, and those that were attacked are fast recovering.

[Frontier Guardian, Kanesville, Iowa, published August 21, 1850; submitted by Ann]

John M. Browning

Inventor Of Gun Spent Boyhood Here.

Council Bluffs is interested in John M. Browning, inventor of the Browning machine gun, which was selected some time ago, from all the various competing makes and adopted for the universal use of the United States army in the present war. It may be interesting to know that the inventor's father, Jonathan Browning, from whom the inventor undoubtedly inherited his inventive genius, was at one time a resident of this city, operating a small gun store here from 1847 to 1852, making guns for the pioneers who were pushing westward.

Later, this shop with its primitive equipment was moved to Ogden, which became the family home. The boy, John M. Browning, grew up in the little shop and as a boy built up effective arms from discarded parts on the scrap pile. Before he was 14 he had whittled out of wood two or three original designs of breech mechanisms for rifles. There, too, on the small foot lathe which his father had hauled across the plains in an ox wagon, he made the model of his first arm which was put on the market, a single shot rifle of solid construction. Browning is now 64 years of age, and lives in Ogden. An interesting narrative of his life is given in the Post Democrat magazine of St. Louis.

[Nonpareil, Council Bluffs, Iowa, published January 20, 1918; submitted by Ann]

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