History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/Datus E. Coon
DATUS E. COON was one of the pioneer newspaper men of Iowa. He established the first newspaper in Mitchell County, at Osage, in 1856, called the Democrat and supported the administration of James Buchanan. In 1858 he established a paper called the Cerro Gordo Press, at Mason City, the first in the county. Two years later, in 1860, he moved to Ellington and there established the first paper published in Hancock County. When the Civil War began he received authority from Governor Kirkwood to raise a company for the Second Iowa Cavalry. It became Company I in the organization of the regiment. He was a gallant soldier and was promoted to major in September, 1861, to colonel in 1864 and brevetted Brigadier-General in March, 1865. He located in Alabama at the close of the war and was elected to the Legislature during the reconstruction period. Mr. Coon was appointed by President Hayes Consul to Babaca, Cuba. In 1875 he went to San Diego, California, as Superintendent of the Chinese Exclusion Law, where he was killed by the accidental discharge of a pistol on the 17th of December, 1893.