| This biography appears on pages 535-536 in "History of Dakota Territory" by George W. Kingsbury, Vol. V (1915) |
John B. Wallace, postmaster of Ardmore, South Dakota, was born in
Fremont county, Iowa, on the 26th of November, 1871, a son of Alexander H. and Jane (Bowes) Wallace. The father was born in Scotland on the
12th of August, 1832, and the mother in lower Canada, May 12, 1836. When Alexander H. Wallace was but thirteen years of age his parents
removed with their family to Canada and there he grew to manhood and engaged in the potash business and also learned the carpenter's trade.
In 1871 he removed with his family to Iowa, locating in Fremont county, ten miles from the town of Hamburg. They continued to reside in that
locality until they removed across the line to Missouri, settling less than a mile from their Iowa home. In 1887 they went to Nebraska,
arriving at Crawford on the 28th of March of that year. Subsequently they made their way to Fall River county, South Dakota, and settled
upon a farm one mile south and thirteen and a half miles west of Ardmore, where the father engaged in ranching until his death, which
occurred in February, 1896. The mother continued to reside upon the ranch until the fall of 1914, when she removed to Ardmore, where she
died May 17, 1915. While a resident of Canada the father patented and manufactured a line of bee hives which became extensively used and gave
much satisfaction. For a number of years he served as a magistrate in Canada and was a man whose ability commanded the respect of his fellow
To him and his wife were born ten children: Elizabeth, now Mrs.
John M. Van Sant, of Omaha, Nebraska; Robert, who resides on a ranch sixteen miles west of Ardmore; Mary E., who gave her hand in marriage
to I. H. Jared, of Council Bluffs, Iowa; Anna S., the wife of W. A. Cole, living on a ranch fourteen and a half miles west of Ardmore;
James, who is living in Niobrara county, Wyoming; Daniel, who is living upon the home place; John B.; Margaret, the wife of C. M. Plumb, who is
a ranchman of Niobrara county, Wyoming; and two who have passed away, of whom Jennie, the first born, became the wife of Jesse E. Baker,
while the seventh in order of birth died when about two years old.
John B. Wallace attended the common schools of Iowa and Atchison
county, Missouri. When about eighteen years of age he began working for others in the summer and so continued for a number of years, remaining
at home during the winter months. Following his marriage he was for two years employed as a cowboy, which occupation he had previously followed
for six years, and then took up his residence upon a ranch seven miles north of Crawford, Nebraska, living there from the fall of 1897 to the
fall of 1900, when he went to Antelope county, that state. The following year he came to Fall River county, South Dakota, settling in
Ardmore, in April, 1901. He conducted a pool and billiard parlor until he was appointed postmaster, taking office October 22, 1901. During the
intervening fourteen years he has had charge of the postal affairs of Ardmore and has performed his work accurately and systematically. His
ability has not only won him the respect of his fellow citizens but his courtesy has gained him their liking as well. He is a stockholder and
one of the promoters of the Ardmore Oil Company and owns the lot and building in which the posoffice is located and also three residence
properties in Ardmore.
On the 10th of November 1895, Mr. Wallace married Miss Hattie M.
Andrews, who was born in the vicinity of Galesburg, Illinois, and is a daughter of Lucas and Rebecca (Paden) Andrews. Her parents removed with
their family to Iowa and for about four years lived near Woodbine. Later they made their home in the vicinity of Whitney, Nebraska, but
only remained there a short time, after which they took up their residence upon a homestead seven and one-half miles northwest of
Crawford, Nebraska, and resided there until the fall of 1897, when they went to Antelope county, that state, and located upon land seven and
one-half miles northwest of Royal, then known as Savage. The mother died while the family was living upon the preemption claim near
Whitney, in 1888, and the father passed away in Antelope county in 1905. Mr. and Mrs. Wallace have four children: Hazel G., at home;
Mildred E. and Laurie A., both attending school; and Lois L.
Mr. Wallace is a republican but does not consider himself
absolutely bound by party ties. He has served for two terms upon the city council, has been county constable, justice of the peace and clerk
and is at present a member of the school board and postmaster of Ardmore. He concentrates his attention upon his duties in the latter
position and his official record is one that is highly creditable alike to himself and his constituents. He is connected with the Modern
Woodmen of America and is now clerk of the local camp. During the fourteen years that he has resided in Ardmore he has been identified
with many of the movements that have made for community progress and has gained many warm friends.