|Other People | Frank J. Bradley | Olive Rambo Cook | Jerry Litton ||
Past and Present of Livingston County
Volume 2. Biographies
by Major A. J. Roof. 1913
James Monroe Decker, prominently connected with the interests of Dawn as proprietor of the business conducted by the Dawn Telephone Company, is a native of Missouri, born in Chillicothe, March 29, 1864. He is a son of A. J. and Electa (Hosea) Decker, the former a pioneer farmer in Livingston county, who came to this section of the state about the year 1845. At the outbreak of the Civil war he offered his services as a member of Company G, Forty-fourth Missouri Volunteer Infantry, and served until the close of hostilities. He died November 5, 1878, and was survived by his wife until April 16, 1906. Both are buried in the Utica cemetery.
In the acquirement of an education James Monroe Decker attended the Dawn public schools and completed the course then taught at the age of seventeen years. For a number of years he engaged in farming, developing his father's property until 1887, in which year he engaged in business for himself. He owns forty acres of land, on which he lives and also a brick business building in Dawn. He is a successful and representative farmer, developing his property along modern and progressive lines, Since 1903 he has been proprietor of the Dawn Telephone Exchange which demands a large amount of his time and attention in his endeavor to give good service to his large number of telephone patrons. His business career has been marked by consecutive advancement and his efforts have resulted in a gratifying degree of success, which places him among the men who are factors in the general growth of the community.
Mr. Decker married, at Dawn, on the 13th of April, 1887, Miss Charlotte Barry, a daughter of J. L. and Leila Barry, the former for many years prominent in agricultural circles of Livingston county. He lived retired for some time before his death, which occurred in July, 1906. He was survived by his wife until 1910. Both are buried in Elliott cemetery. Mr. and Mrs. Decker are the parents of five children: Alfa, who married Charles Kromeich, who farms near Braymer, Missouri; Alma, who became the wife of Thomas Hargrave, of Breckenridge, Missouri; Ralph, who resides at home; and John and Winifred, who are attending school.
Mr. Decker is well known in fraternal circles, holding membership in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Encampment, of which he is past grand and chief patriarch, respectively. He is also identified with the Rebekahs and is a Modern Woodman. He is a deacon in the Baptist church, of which he has long been a devout adherent, and politically gives his allegiance to the progressive party. He has never been desirous of official recognition but when called upon to do so has served his fellow citizens with ability and energy, being at the present time clerk and assessor of his township. Always public spirited and progressive, he is an ardent advocate of good roads and has been road overseer in his district for the last eighteen years, having done much for the improvement of the public highways. Mr. Decker has made good use of his opportunities. He has prospered from year to year, has conducted all business matters carefully and ably and in all his acts displays an aptitude for successful management.