Local Authors Collection

Biographies of Washington authors affiliated with Washington or Washington County and original content. To submit an author or item for inclusion, please contact the Library Director.

Brookhart, Smith Wildman (1869-1944)

Smith Wildman Brookhart (1869-1944) was twice elected as a Republican to represent Iowa in the United States Senate. He was admitted to the bar in 1892 and began practicing law in Washington. He served for six years as Washington County Attorney. He served in the U.S. Army during the Spanish–American War and World War I, where he reached the rank of lieutenant colonel. He was renowned for his marksmanship with a rifle. Brookhart eventually served as president of the National Rifle Association from 1921 to 1925. His book Rifle Training for War, published by the National Rifle Association of America is still used as a manual to teach marksmanship.

Brookhart, Smith Wildman (1869-1944) - Read More…

Brown, Rev. Charles Reynolds (1862-1950)

Rev. Charles Reynolds Brown (1862-1950) was an American Congregational clergyman and educator, born in Bethany, W. Va. He prepared for college at the Washington Academy, graduated from the University of Iowa in 1883, and studied theology at Boston University. He lectured at various times at Leland Stanford, Yale, Cornell, and Columbia universities, and was pastor of the First Congregational Church at Oakland, Cal., from 1896 to 1911. In the latter year he became dean of the Yale Divinity School. He is the author of 12 books and numerous lectures.

Brown, Rev. Charles Reynolds (1862-1950) - Read More…

Burrell, Howard A. (1838-1916)

Howard A Burrell (1838-1916), editor and proprietor of the Washington Press, was born in Sheffield, Lorain Co., Ohio in 1838. He was a graduate of Oberlin College and moved to Washington in April 1886, when he purchased the Washington County Press. For several years prior to his coming to Washington, he was connected with the Cleveland (Ohio) Daily Leader and was its city editor. He is author of History of Washington County Iowa: From the First White Settlements to 1908, which was published in two volumes in 1909.

Burrell, Howard A. (1838-1916) - Read More…

Chilcote, Jane (1828-1901)

Jane Chilcote (1828-1901) was considered a pioneer in early Washington history. A few years after the death of her husband, in April 1895, Jane published a book entitled "The Morning Will Dawn." It focuses on life after death, from a Christian point of view, and contains essays written at different times.

Chilcote, Jane (1828-1901) - Read More…

Cuddeback, Larry & Cheyenne

Larry Cuddeback graduated from Iowa State University in 1972 with a BS degree in Recreation Resource Management. He worked eight years with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a ranger and park manager before returning to the farm in 1980. In addition to farming, Larry operates a Christmas tree farm, enjoys deer hunting, cutting firewood, and his granddaughters. He resides in rural Washington County with his wife and one daughter. Cheyenne Miller graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 2004 with a BA degree in History. She is employed with Premier 1 Supplies, Ltd. as a merchandiser and also organized international travel. She resides with her husband and three young daughters in rural Washington County, Iowa. In her spare time she enjoys gardening, photography, traveling and spending time with friends and family.

Cuddeback, Larry & Cheyenne - Read More…

Davis, D. Clair (1932- )

Daniel Clair Davis (1932- ) is a 1950 graduate of Washington High School, who went on to teach at Wheaton College and Westminster Seminary. He is the son of Harvey and Kathryne Davis. Harvey was an elder at First Presbyterian Church and Kathryne is a past-president of Fortnightly. [dissertation attached]

Davis, D. Clair (1932- ) - Read More…

Elder, David (1911-2002)

David Elder (1911-2002), worked at The Washington Evening Journal for seventy years. He graduated from Washington High School, attended Pamona College, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University. The Iowa Press association named him “Master Publisher” in 1978, and he received the Iowa Newspaper Heritage Club award in 1992. He wrote a series of self-published stories including: Mrs. Black (1975), Ghost Dog at Benton Mill (no date), Ghost at the Inn of the Six-toed Cat (1992), What We Laughed at in Those Days (1993), Episode, A Love Story, Sort of (1997), Ghost of the Apollo (1997), A Bowl of Soup (1997), Scuttlebutt (2002). He also wrote: A Stranger Comes to Cottonwood, a play which the Washington Community Theater produced in 1998. Elder is buried in Elm Grove Cemetery.

Elder, David (1911-2002) - Read More…

Elder, John Orville (1886-1940)

John Orville Elder (1886-1940) was born on a farm near Slexis, Illinois, he came to Washington at the age of eighteen. He received his teaching certificate and taught school for one year. He bought the Washington Evening Journal in 1900, and was its editor until shortly before his death. The Iowa Press Association named him “Master Editor” in 1938. His books include: Pickey (1899), A Trip to the Hawaiian Islands with the Press Congress of the World (1901), Frank Stories (1905), Samuel Hall: 47 Years a Slave (1912) [link to full text book attached], Mickey Peck (1918). He is buried in Elm Grove Cemetery.

Elder, John Orville (1886-1940) - Read More…

Elgin, Bruce (1969- )

The son of a zoo director and art therapist, Bruce Elgin has been writing all of his life. The first Christmas present he can remember asking for was an electric typewriter. Since then, he's earned his B.A. from the University of Iowa and his MFA in creative writing from National University. He continues to study writing at every opportunity, and works on integrating lessons from different styles and genres into his work and teaching. He has published two novels, Schism and Voodootown. He often teaches classes and seminars in story structure and character development to both novelists and screenwriters and teaches regularly for the University of Iowa’s International Writing Program. He lives in Washington, IA with his wife and son.

Elgin, Bruce (1969- ) - Read More…

Fisher, Lola Kathleen "Kathy" (1935-2009)

Lola Kathleen “Kathy” Fisher, (1935-2009) graduated from West Chester High School. She worked for Security in the State Department, and was working there during the Kennedy Assassination. After returning home, she wrote the Centennial History of West Chester, and In the Beginning there Was Land: A History of Washington County Iowa (1978). Her ashes were scattered in the West Chester Cemetery. [link to additional information attached]

Fisher, Lola Kathleen "Kathy" (1935-2009) - Read More…

Hotle, C. Patrick (1957- )

C. Patrick Hotle (1957- ) graduated from Washington High School, received his B.A. from the University of Iowa (1980) and his M.Phil. (1985) and Ph.D. (1992) from Cambridge University in England (1992). He teaches, and was Chair of the Humanities Department at Culver Stockton College in Canton Missouri. His dissertation: Thorns and Thistles: Diplomacy Between Henry VIII and James V 1528-1542 was published in 1996. He is the author of: Egypt and the Middle East (1995) Russia and the United States (1998) and Renaissance (1997) for Mark Twain Media. His articles have appeared in Ex Scientia magazine.

Hotle, C. Patrick (1957- ) - Read More…

Hotle, Charles "Chuck" (1915-2007)

Charles (Chuck) Hotle (1915-2007) attended Washington Junior College and the University of Iowa. He owned Hotle Feed and Grain Company. His column Thoughts of a Woodchopper ran in The Shopper for thirty years. He wrote several self-published booklets including: Thoughts of a Wood Chopper (no date), Slaughter County (1981), Forks in the River (1983), Skunk River War (1984), Hired Hand (1985), Frontier Mailman (1987), Story of Uncle Pete (1989), The Stallions (1990), Mormons, Quakers and the Plank Road (1995), Our Local Heroes and their Bits of Fame (1999), Dutch Creek (no date), Towns of Washington County (2005), Crimes in Slaughter County (2002), Let the Chips Fall (1991).

Hotle, Charles "Chuck" (1915-2007) - Read More…

Hunt, Andrew "Tom" (1980- )

Andrew "Tom" Hunt​ (1980- ) was born in Washington, attended The University of Iowa, and currently lives in New York City. He's worked as a printer salesman, a hospital administrator, and is currently an award-winning advertising copywriter. He has worked for some of the nation’s largest and best-known agencies, including J. Walter Thompson and Saatchi & Saatchi. Killer Choice is his first novel.

Hunt, Andrew "Tom" (1980- ) - Read More…

Kramme, Michael (1946- )

Michael Kramme (1946- ) was born and raised in Des Moines. He attended Grand View College, and received his B.A. and M.A. from the University of Northern Iowa and his Ph.D. from the University of Missouri-Colombia. He taught at Washington High school from 1968-1984 and was a professor of theater at Culver Stockton College from 1984-2002. His dissertation was entitled: “A Critical Analysis of Bill Bruno’s Bulletin, A Mid-West Show Business Newspaper” (1987). He wrote several books for Mark Twain Media including: How to Give a Speech (1996), Theater Through the Ages (1996), Mayan, Inca & Aztec Civilizations (1996), Pirates and Treasures (1998) heroes – World Heroes since World War II (1998), Rivers of the U.S. (1999), The United States (2000) and a series of seven booklets, one on each of the continents. He is the author of two books for the Iowan Magazine books division: The Governors of Iowa and The Schaffner Players, and Images of Washington for Arcadia Publishing. His articles have appeared in Iowa History Illustrated, The Palimpsest, Old West Magazine, Missouri Magazine, Theater History Studies.

Kramme, Michael (1946- ) - Read More…

Lazar, Keith (1948- )

Keith Lazar (1948- ) enjoyed a 41 year career in the banking industry, 35 of which was in the top leadership position. The last 25 years he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Washington State Bank, Washington, Iowa. His book, "2.8 to 4.5... Assembly Required," provides a step by step workplace culture improvement process for those in any supervisory position, whether it be a crew foreman, a department head, a President/CEO, anyone aspiring to achieve such, or even those merely seeking self improvement.

Lazar, Keith (1948- ) - Read More…

Matthews, John Telford "J.T." (1861-1928)

J. T. Matthews was a successful business man and elected official at the turn of the century. He became a partner in the real-estate firm of B. F. Dixon & Company in January 1898 (Burrell). He served as the Clerk of Courts for Washington County from 1901-1904, and as Washington County Auditor from 1927-1928 (Iowa Official Register). [book attached]

Matthews, John Telford "J.T." (1861-1928) - Read More…

McDaniel, Rev. George William (1942- )

Rev. George William McDaniel (1942- ) is a professor and Chair, Department of History at St. Ambrose University, Davenport. He taught there since 1974. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. in history at the University of Iowa. McDaniel was ordained as a Catholic priest in 1970. He is the author of several articles in The Annals of Iowa and The Palimpsest. He served on the Board of Directors of the State Historical Society of Iowa. His dissertation: Smith Wildman Brookhart (United States Senator from Washington) was published in 1995.

McDaniel, Rev. George William (1942- ) - Read More…

Pollard, Percival (1869-1911)

Percival Pollard, (1869-1911) was born in Greifswald, Pomerania which is now part of Northern Germany. He studied at Eastburne College in Sussex, England. At the age of fifteen, he emigrated with his family to the United States and three years later they moved to Washington. Percival studied briefly at the Washington Academy. He worked at the St. Joseph (Missouri) News and began to write sketches for various weekly literary papers. He became editor of Light, a comic Chicago weekly. Pollard wrote ten books and one play: Cape of Storms (1892), Miniature Dreams (1893) Posters in Miniature (1896) The Kiss that Killed (1898) The Imitator (1901), In Memorandum: Oscar Wilde (1905 translator), Dreams of Today (1907, The Ambitious Mrs. Alcott (1907 a play that had 24 performances on Broadway), Their Day in Court (1909), Masks and Minstrels of New Germany (1911), Vagabond Journeys: The Human Comedy at Home and Abroad (1911). Pollard died on December 17, 1911 of an abscess in the brain. His ashes are buried in Elm Grove Cemetery.

Pollard, Percival (1869-1911) - Read More…

Scofield, Cora (1870-1962)

Cora Scofield (1870-1962) was the daughter of a prominent Washington family. She attended Washington Academy and received her B.A. from Vassar in 1890 and her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1898. She taught history at Wellesley College near Boston from 1897 to 1902. Miss Scofield studied for her doctorate in England. Her dissertation was entitled: A Study of the Court of the Star Chamber. She wrote a two-volume book The Life and Reign of Edward IV which is still the primary biography of his era. It was recently republished. Published articles include: Account of the Star Chamber Dinner 1593-94 published in the American Historical Review, The Early life of John de Vere, published in the English Historical Review, and An Engagement of Service to Warwick the Kingmaker 1462, published in the English Historical Review. Miss Scofield died in Boston, and is buried in Elm Grove Cemetery. [link to scanned diary attached]

Scofield, Cora (1870-1962) - Read More…

Stoufer, David E. (1941- )

David E. Stoufer (1941 - ) A native of Fort Dodge, Iowa, David E. Stoufer (Dave) moved to Washington, Iowa in 1979 to work as an announcer at KCII Radio. He graduated from Fort Dodge High School and studied at Buena Vista College, Storm Lake, IA as well as St. Paul School of Theology in Kansas City, MO. Dave began a nearly 50-year career appearing as Santa while in Fort Dodge and has been Washington’s Santa for many years. His first book, ‘Are You the Real Santa?’ was published in 2013; his first fictional work, ‘The Reverend Mr. J.C.’ was published in 2017.

Stoufer, David E. (1941- ) - Read More…

Weller, Peter & Fred Stark

Peter Weller & Fred Stark are cousins, long-time Washington residents, and train enthusiasts. Together they wrote The living legacy of the Chicago Aurora and Elgin: an illustrated history of the CA&E and its transition to the Illinois Prairie Path. It was published by Forum Press in 1999.

Weller, Peter & Fred Stark - Read More…

This resource is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by State Library of Iowa.