William Oldham Moberley biography

WILIAM OLDHAM MOBERLEY was one of the first men to take part of the range land at the present town of Iowa Park and turn it into a beautiful, fertile and profitable farm. Iowa Park is now one of the growing and prosperous towns of North Texas, with all the rich territory around, through development and good farm management, contributing its wealth to this center, and it is difficult to realize that less than fifteen years ago the region was almost uninhabited range and only at the beginning of its era of progress and upbuilding. Mr. Moberley is one of those who have persevered through several discouraging seasons, placing his judgment in the fertility of the soil against droughts and other evils that beset the agriculturist, and he has been successful to a high degree and is owner of as fine a farm as any in the neighborhood. He is an industrious, public-spirited and popular citizen, is a veteran of the rebellion, having fought throughout the war, and has made himself useful in all relations of life.

He was born in Howard county, Missouri, in 1838. His parents were Ichabod and Elizabeth (Oldham) Moberley. His father was born near Richmond, Madison county, Kentucky, and was one of the early settlers of Howard county, Missouri. In 1840, when William O., was two years old, he left there and went to Talladega county, Alabama, where he continued to make his home until his death, in 1882. He was a farmer by occupation.

Mr. Moberley lost his mother in 1855. He was reared on his father’s farm, and when the war came on he was living in Talladega county, and from there enlisted, in 1862, in a battalion of cavalry which later became a part of what was known as the Eighth Confederate Battalion, so called because composed of cavalrymen from a number of different southern states, who met in Alabama and organized. This battalion was in General Joe Wheeler’s division and General Martin’s brigade and Colonel Prathers, now of Atlanta, Georgia, was one of their gallant officers. Mr. Moberley was in the fighting at Corinth, also at Blackland and a number of other places in Mississippi, and then followed Bragg into Kentucky, whence they had to fight all the way back to Tennessee; later at the battles of Murfreesboro, Shelbyville, Chickamauga. This cavalry battalion was engaged mostly in dangerous scouting duties, and were sent all over the conflicting places of the south. Mr. Moberley came out of the brave southrons who fought for the lost cause he returned to his home in Talladega county and took up the burdens of civil life, continuing the farming career which had been broken into by war. There were three other boys in the family who had been in the Confederate service, and they all returned home.

In 1872 Mr. Moberley moved from Alabama to Milam county, Texas, and for the following six years was engaged in farming near Maysfield; his next location was on a farm six miles south of Waco, in McLennan county, where he lived about eight years. In 1886 he came to Wichita county, and on a tract of land adjoining the town of Wichita Falls he made one crop. In the next year he came to his present farm, eleven miles west of Wichita Falls, and the place that he selected adjoins the now beautiful village of Iowa Park, but which was not laid out until 1888. Mr. Moberley’s was one of the first farms to be located here, and the land at that time was all range. His estate comprises four hundred acres, on which he carries on general farming operations, and is making and has made a good success.

Mr. Moberley is a member of the Presbyterian church. While living in Alabama he was married to Miss Myrtle Wilson, who was born and reared in Georgia. She died at Iowa Park, May 6, 1899, leaving two children, namely: William Cunningham Moberley, of Iowa Park; and Mrs. Katie May Crites, of Wichita Falls.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, pp. 451-452.