Biography of Isem W. Graham

With a prosperous and steadily expanding farming and stock industry to engage his time and energies, and so well established in the esteem and good will of his community that the plateau on which he lives has been named Graham mesa in his honor, the subject of this brief review has found in this western world the success in business and influence among his fellow men of which he is well fitted by nature and attainments, and is justifying the promise of his early life made manifest by even youthful exhibitions of energy and capacity. He is a native of Springville, Wisconsin, born in August, 1856, and the son of Lewis and Electra C. (Shown) Graham, natives respectively of Illinois and Indiana. His father was a miller by trade and followed his craft in connection with farming for many years in Wisconsin. The family then moved to Minnesota, where he died in 1879, aged fifty-three years. In 1864 he enlisted in the Union army as a member of Company F, One Hundred and Thirteenth Wisconsin Infantry, serving in that regiment until the close of the Civil war. The mother died in 1880, at the age of forty-seven. Her father was a veteran of the war of 1812, and regaled her childhood with stirring tales of events in that short but decisive contest. The family comprised five children, of whom Isem was the first born. He lived in Wisconsin to the age of twelve, then moved with the rest of the family to Minnesota. In 1881 he came to Colorado and located in Park county. For five years he was employed in a store there, then moved to the vicinity of Rifle, where he now lives, and settled on a ranch on Graham mesa, which, as has been noted, was named in his honor. Since then he has made his home on this ranch and has been actively engaged in farming and raising high-grade stock. He was married in 1889 to Miss Jennie Mullen, and they have had six children, Elmer, Claud, Albert, Henry, Eber and Violet, the last named dying in 1902, at the age of ten months. Mr. Graham is a prominent member of the order of Woodmen of the World. He is successful in business and prominent in public life, and is widely esteemed in the community where he has so long lived and successfully labored.


Source: Bowen, A. W. Progressive Men of Western Colorado. Chicago: A. W. Bowen & Co., Publishers. 1905.


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