John Meshack Phipps: A Partial Bibliography

Any man who has not sense enough to let liquor and tobacco alone must be a fool his lifetime long. I have lived for more than a hundred years and my mind is still stronger than my bodily desires. I have no more use for the man who uses liquor than I have for poison.
– John M. Phipps in the East Oregonian, 4 August 1916, p. 7

John Meshack Phipps, called Shack Phips in his younger days, was the twin brother of Eli Shadrack Phipps. Both were born 14 February 1812, and were sons of Jesse Phipps (about 1786-1788 to 1865), who in turn was a son of Samuel Phips, who died in 1854 in Ashe County, North Carolina.

Here is list of some sources – certainly not all of them – pertaining to the colorful life of John Meshack Phipps. In dealing with newspaper citations, it should be noted that period newspapers sometimes issued two or more editions in a single day, which could have differed in terms of both content and page numbers.

  • 1850 Census, Monroe County, Iowa, 10 December 1850, #330/330
  • 1860 Census, Dodge Township, Boone County, Iowa, 6 July 1860, #354/288
  • 1870 Census, Fort Osage Township, Jackson County, Missouri, 15 August 1870, #231/231 (as “Philips”)
  • 1900 Census, Fisher Township, Fremont County, Iowa, 26 June 1900
  • “Aged Elk Avoids Liquor,” East Oregonian, 4 August 1916, p. 7
  • “Aged John Phipps Dead,” Times-Republican, 11 December 1916, p. 2
  • “Aged Pair of Twins,” Mills County Tribune, Glenwood, Iowa, 15 February 1910, p. 3
  • “Aged Twin Brother Dead,” Mills County Tribune, Glenwood, Iowa, 3 March 1911, p. 4
  • “Almost 105 Years Old,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 14 December 1916, p. 1
  • “Banditti of the Prairie: A True Story,” Dixon Telegraph, Dixon, Illinois, 14 December 1907, p. 3
  • “Believe Him Father of Jno. D. Rockefeller,” Lyon County Reporter, Rock Rapids, Iowa, 13 July 1905, p. 2; Algona Advance, Algona, Iowa, 20 July 1905, p. 6
  • Bonney, Edward, The Banditti of the Prairies: A Tale of the Mississippi Valley, Chicago: D.B. Cooke & Company, 1856, pp. 72, 86-94, 96, 98-100, 102-104, 107
  • Bonney, Edward, The Banditti of the Prairies; or the Murderer’s Doom, Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson and Brothers, 1855, pp. 96, 99-100, 103-105, 108, 110-112, 114-116, 121
  • “Celebrated 103rd Birthday,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 25 February 1915, p. 1
  • “Centennarians Meet,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 19 September 1912, p. 1
  • David Phipps & Meshack Phipps vs. Isaac E. Gano, Assumpsit, on Appeal, Owen County, Indiana Civil Court Book 3, 28 September 1840, pp. 256-258
  • “Dead at 105,” Mexico Missouri Message, Mexico, Missouri, 21 December 1916, p. 6
  • “Dead at 105, He Outlived Twin Brother Five Years,” Topeka Daily State Journal, Topeka, Kansas, 13 December 1916, p. 10
  • Death certificate, John M. Phipps, Iowa Department of Vital Statistics, 10 December 1916
  • “Death of Mrs. F. A. Gardner’s Mother,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 22 November 1906, p. 1
  • “Denies He is Sire of J.D. Rockefeller,” Ft. Wayne Sentinel, Ft. Wayne, Indiana, 2 August 1905, p. 1
  • “Dies at One Hundred and Five,” New Mexico State Record, 19 January 1917, p. 7
  • “Fatal Affray,” New Albany Daily Ledger, New Albany, Indiana, 11 February 1865, p. 2
  • “Glories of Fair Shenandoah,” Omaha Bee, Omaha, Nebraska, 20 February 1910, Women’s section, p. 6
  • Guinness’ Book of World Records, various older editions, under oldest twins on record
  • Hickenlooper, Frank, An Illustrated History of Monroe County, Iowa, Albia, Iowa: Self-published, 1896, p. 179
  • “His 100th Birthday,” The Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 22 February 1912, pp. 1, 12
  • “Iowa Man Killed in Oklahoma,” Omaha Bee, Omaha, Nebraska, 28 June 1906, p. 9
  • “Iowa News Briefs,” Cresco Plain Dealer, 25 February 1916, p. 2
  • James Anderson, Jr. & John W. Anderson, vs. David Phipps, & Meshack Phipps, In Debt, Owen County, Indiana Civil Court Book 3, 1 September 1840, pp. 232-233
  • Mills, O.H., “The Territorial Detective of Iowa: Shack Phipps, the Lawyer and Mr. Fox,” Waterloo Courier, Waterloo, Iowa, 7 June 1910, p. 7
  • “More Personal Items,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 30 September 1909, p. 1
  • “Nebraska News and Notes,” Columbus Journal, Columbus, Nebraska, 3 November 1909, p. 2
  • “Nebraska News and Notes,” Custer County Republican, 4 November 1909, p. 2
  • “News Port White ‘Brung,'” Chicago Heights Star, Chicago Heights, Illinois, 21 December 1916, p. 10
  • “Not Rockefeller’s Papa,” Minneapolis Journal, 23 August 1905, p. 14
  • “Remarkably Aged Twins,” Evening Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 20 March 1915, p. 4
  • “Oldest Living Twins,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 12 February 1910, p. 2
  • “Oldest Living Twins Meet,” Ottumwa Tri-Weekly Courier, Ottumwa, Iowa, 19 February 1910, p. 6
  • “Oldest Man is Dead,” Mills County Tribune, Glenwood, Iowa, 14 December 1916, p. 1
  • “Personal Column Overflow,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 10 January 1907, p. 5
  • “Phipps Joins Elks,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 15 February 1912, p. 5
  • Probate packet 642, Jesse Phipps, Putnam County, Missouri
  • “Purely Personal,” Leon Reporter, 6 January 1910, p. 4
  • “A Remarkable Pair of Twins,” Enid Daily Eagle, Enid, Oklahoma, 15 March 1910, p. 2
  • Richter, Aug. P., Geschichte der Stadt Davenport und des County Scott, Vol. 1, Davenport, Iowa: Self-published, 1917, p. 310 (in German)
  • “Rockefeller’s Father: Murder of Hiram Phipps Revives Speculation Over the Oil Magnate’s Parentage,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 28 June 1906, p. 3
  • “Said to Be John D.’s Father,” The Fort Gibson Post, Ft. Gibson, Oklahoma, 13 May 1909, p. 6
  • “Southern Iowa Items,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 2 July 1914, p. 5
  • “Southern Iowa Items,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 19 February 1915, p. 4
  • “Southern Iowa Items,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 17 February 1916, p. 4
  • “Southern Iowa Items,” Times-Republican, Marshalltown, Iowa, 20 December 1916, p. 5
  • “Tabor Items: From the Beacon,” Glenwood Opinion, Glenwood, Iowa, 13 march 1911, p. 4
  • “Twins 98 Years Old,” Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 17 February 1910, p. 1
  • “Twins Healthy at Age of 107,” The Hobart Republican, Hobart, Oklahoma, 26 May 1910, p. 2
  • “Uncle John Phipps: His 100th Birthday,” Sentinel Post, Shenandoah, Iowa, 13 February 1912
  • “Uncle John Phipps is 99,” Mills County Tribune, Glenwood, Iowa, 21 February 1911, p. 1
  • Untitled, Bedford Free Press, Bedford, Iowa, 3 March 1914, p. 7
  • Untitled, Day Book, Chicago, Illinois, 11 December 1916, p. 2
  • Unititled, Evening Statesman, Walla Walla, Washington, 30 August 1905, p. 4
  • Untitled, Hamburg Reporter, Hamburg, Iowa, 22 December 1911, p. 5
  • Untitled, Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa, 25 January 1912, p. 7
  • Untitled, Milford Mail, Milford, Iowa, 21 December 1916, p. 2
  • “Venerable Iowa Farmer Not Oil King’s Father,” Washington Times, Washington, DC, 11 July 1905, p. 4.
  • “The Week’s News,” St. Johnsbury Caledonian, St. Johnsbury, Vermont, 12 July 1905, p. 3
  • “The World in Paragraphs,” Tombstone Epitaph, Tombstone, Arizona, 24 December 1916, p. 6
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