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McDermott, Francis



  • Existence: 1895-1955


Francis McDermott was born in Waterloo, Iowa on April 8, 1895 and died at Omaha, Nebraska on June 19, 1955, at Veteran's Administration Hospital. He lived most of his life in Missouri Valley, Iowa. He is buried at Mt. Carmel Cemetery in Missouri Valley. He had six sisters: Mayme, Mig (Margaret), Eva, Irene, Mary Jane, and Grace; and a brother John.   McDermott enlisted in the U.S. Army on May 29, 1917. As a former employee of the Chicago-Northwestern Railway, he became part of the 13th regiment of railway engineers. A private in Company E, he was stationed in France until after the armistice. Most of his time in the military was spent as a cook.   Following his discharge from military service, he worked as a traveling salesman in Iowa and Nebraska, selling slicing machines to butcher shops. He married Mabel Pauline of Missouri Valley on November 9, 1920. Thereafter he engaged in several business ventures, mostly successful, in Missouri Valley. For several years, with partner Peter Wright, he operated a set of carnival rides under the name of Wright Amusement Company. When this business was sold, Mr. McDermott set up an ice cream, sandwich, and plate dinner shop on main street in Missouri Valley, called the Soda Grill.   During this time he also bought and operated a sizable popcorn farm, helped found the Logan-Missouri Valley Country Club, founded a small-loan agency, and operated a tavern and card room, called the Smoke Shop, on main street in Missouri Valley. At the time of his death, McDermott was only running the tavern. He died of a coronary occlusion after a brief hospitalization

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Francis McDermott Family Papers

Identifier: MsC0451

Soldier, 13th Regiment of railway engineers, U.S. Army, in W.W.I. Correspondence, picture postcards, and photographs.

Dates: 1917-1932; 1978