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Submitted by Elizabeth Burns, Aug 2002

John Henry Verfurth
Arizona, The Youngest State,1913

John Henry Verfurth, whose activity in business has not only contributed to his own prosperity but has also been a factor in the development of Bisbee, is now conducting a large fuel and feed business in that city and is also interested in the Arizona Grocery Company.  He has other business relations connecting him with important financial and commercial interests and the community is glad to number him among its business men who energy and enterprise are factors in its up building.

Mr. Verfurth was born in Iowa in 1869, a son of John Henry and Mary (Wynhoff) Verfurth, natives of Germany.  The father was seven years of age when he came with his parents to America and the mother crossed the Atlantic in her infancy.  Upon reaching maturity John Henry Verfurth, Sr. took up land in Iowa and farmed there until his death in 1876.  He was survived by his wife until 1891.  They had a family of nine children: Kate, who married Fred Luth, of Iowa; Annie, the wife of William Rhodes in the state of Washington; Mary, who married John Polison of Illinois; Henry of Mesa Arizona; Dora, the deceased wife of Elmer Warren of Washington, Theo who died at the age of thirty-two years; John Henry of this review; Ella who married Milton Johnson of Washington; and Elizabeth the wife of William Ashley also of Washington.

John H. Verfurth was reared in Iowa and acquired his education in the district schools of that state.  At the age of nineteen years he came west, settling at Longmont Colorado, where he spent eight months upon a ranch.  At the end of that time he returned home but after a few months removed to Washington where he worked at various occupations for four years.  Eventually, however, he turned his attention to agricultural pursuits, taking up land near Creston, which he improved and cultivated for six years.  After his marriage he disposed of his holdings and went to British Columbia, where he mined and engaged in various other occupations until he came to Bisbee Arizona in 1899.

Mr. Verfurth began his career here as a miner in the copper mines and after a year and a half obtained a position as driver of a grocery wagon, engaging afterward in the draying business for himself.  He gradually rose in the business world, and eventually became connected with the grain, feed and fuel business in which he still engages.  Today he is at the head of the Independent Fuel and Feed Company one of the two large enterprises of the kind in the city.  Mr. Verfurth owns a two story concrete brick business block on the main street of Bisbee and has extensive property holdings including three residences which he rents.  He is a stockholder in the Citizens Bank and Trust Company and since coming to Bisbee has figured as one of its most enterprising citizens.  In addition he owns an eighty acre farm in the Salt River Valley, well improved and developed and upon this he raises fine crops of alfalfa.  His harvests in 1912 amounted to two hundred and fifty tons, which he marketed in Bisbee at twenty dollars per ton.

On December 16, 1895, Mr. Verfurth married Miss Josie Bogart, a native of Oregon and a daughter of John W. and Katherine (Allen) Bogart, pioneers in that state, who crossed the plains with ox teams from Missouri in the early days.  The father died in Oregon in 1910 but her mother is still living in that state.  In their family were five children: Anna, the wife of Thomas Fountain, of Elmira Oregon; Ida, who married Thomas Cook, of Lebanon Oregon; William, whose home is in the state of Washington; Josie, now Mrs. Verfurth; and Lillie who married Dan Worby also of Washington.

Mr. and Mrs. Verfurth have two children: Ralph, born September 18, 1896 and John Henry Jr born September 20, 1912.

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