Interim Content

Finch, John M.


30 Sept. 1815–13 Dec. 1888. Steamboat owner, speculator, postmaster, merchant, politician. Born in Montrose, Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Moved to Rock Island, Rock Island Co., Illinois, 1838, where he owned a steamboat that operated on Mississippi River. Moved to Nauvoo, Hancock Co., Illinois, ca. 1840. Partnered with William H. Rollosson in grocery firm of Finch & Rollosson, 1841–1844, in Nauvoo. Married Mary E. Bostwick, 8 Jan. 1844, in Lee Co., Iowa Territory. Participated in mob violence against Latter-day Saints, 1844–1845. Identified by Willard Richards as member of mob that killed JS and Hyrum Smith. Left Nauvoo, ca. June 1844, and opened stores with Rollosson in Pontoosuc, Appanoose, and La Harpe, in Hancock Co. Laid out town of Dallas City, Hancock Co., Oct. 1848. Continued grocery business with Rollosson; also traded grain and cattle and operated a packing house, flour mill, and distillery. Appointed first postmaster of Dallas City, Apr. 1850. Served as Dallas City supervisor, 1861–1862. Elected vice president of Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad, 1867. Elected mayor of Dallas City, 1871. Moved to Kearney, Buffalo Co., Nebraska, ca. 1884. Died in Kearney.