William P. Scott 

William P. Scott is a self-made man who without any special family or pecuniary advantages has gained a creditable place in the business world as one whose success has been honorably achieved and whose possessions are the visible evidence of a life of thrift and industry.  He lives in Dallas Center and for many years has made his home in Dallas county, where for a long period he has bean classed with the progressive farmers of Sugar Grove township. He yet owns two farms, one of one hundred and ten acres and the old home place of eighty acres, the latter being pleasantly situated within two miles of Dallas Center.  For almost forty years he has made his home in this locality and is therefore well known to the citizens of Dallas county, with the history of which he has been closely identified, especially in its agricultural progress. 

Mr. Scott is a native of Scotland and possesses many of the sterling characteristics of the people who claim nativity in the land of the hills and heather.  He was born on the first of January, 1830, and is a son of Samuel and Mary (Philips) Scott, who were also natives of that country.  The father devoted his attention to farming in his native country.  Fourteen children were born unto them there and one died in the old world. In the year 1853 the parents crossed the Atlantic to the United States and joined their son William in the state of New York.  One son, Samuel Scott, the eldest of the family, was a sailor on the high seas and met death by drowning. The mother died in New York and the father, with some of his children, afterward came to Iowa, where he joined his son William. The family numbered seven sons and seven daughters. Six sons reached mature years, of whom three are yet living:  William P. and Robert, of Dallas Center; and James Scott, who makes his home in Waukee.  Four of the sisters yet survive, two being residents of New York and two of this county.  Mrs. Julia Dinsmore, now a widow, makes her home in Dallas Center; Mrs. Mary Jackson, a widow, is living in Orleans county, New York, as does her sister, Mrs. Elizabeth Fuller, who is also a widow; and Miss Jessie Scott resides in Beaver township, Dallas county, and also owns a residence in Dallas Center. 

William P. Scott was reared to the age of  eighteen years in his native country and received fair school advantage there.  He emigrated to the new world in 1848, taking ship at Liverpool. The vessel on which he embarked was propelled by sails and after a slow voyage he landed in New York. For some time he lived in Orleans county, that state, working as a farm hand, but after sixteen years spent in the east he journeyed westward to Wisconsin. For four years he was engaged in the lumbering business in Pierce and Polk counties, and in 1868 he came to Dallas county, Iowa., where he purchased his first land, becoming owner of eighty acres on section 22, Sugar Grove township.  This he broke and fenced, built a good frame house and opened up an excellent farm. He and his brother bought the land together and were partners in its cultivation for seven years, when they divided their interests. 

On the 4th of March, 1875, William P. Scott was married to Miss Jennie R. Scott, who was born and reared in Ohio. In that state she lost her father, John Scott, and her mother and the family afterward came to Iowa, where the wife of our subject engaged in teaching for a time in the schools of Dallas county. Following their marriage the young couple began their domestic life upon a farm which he had secured, but on the 2d of August, 1876, the wife was called to her final rest, the interment being made in the Dunkard cemetery at Dallas Center.  Mr. Scott has one daughter, Josephine M., who acts as her father's housekeeper. 

After cultivating his original purchase for some time Mr. Scott purchased another tract of land of one hundred and ten acres on section 3, Sugar Grove township, which he used for a pasture for a few years.  He then tiled and drained the land, broke the sod and fenced the fields.  Later he rented this property.  In connection with the work of raising the cereals best adapted to soil and climate he raised and fed stock and continued in active farming until 1893, when he rented his land and removed to Dallas Center, where he has since made his home.  He is practically living retired, yet gives his supervision to his farming interests, and although he started out in life a poor boy he is now a prosperous citizen with valuable property, from which he derives a good annual income.  In all his dealings he has been strictly honorable and straightforward. 

In politics Mr. Scott is a republican but has never sought office, although he did serve for one term as township trustee.  His wife was a member of the Presbyterian church and his daughter belongs to the same church, in the work of which she takes an active and helpful part.  Great changes have come since Mr. Scott took up his abode in this county.  Many of the now thriving towns and villages had not yet sprung into existence.  The railroads had not been built and much of the land was still uncultivated but the prairies have been converted into rich and productive farms and all of the evidences of a modern civilization have been added.  This result has not been accomplished by one man or even by a few, but is the result of the combined effort of many enterprising and reliable citizens, to which class William P. Scott belongs.  The hope that led him to seek a home in America has been realized, for he found that in this country labor was unhampered by caste or class and that success was the reward of persistency of purpose and of diligence.