Local History Collections

Collection ID: LH-401
Location: LH-401

(Description ID: 595748)

Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums

Francis Raymond Madden


Biographical Sketch
Scope and Content

This collection was donated to the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center in 2014.

Biographical Sketch
Francis Raymond “Ray” Madden was born to Martin and Emma Rowan  Madden on 23 October 1896, in Lincoln County Wisconsin. At the age of 14, he moved with his family to Lyons, Iowa [known as Clinton in Clinton County, Iowa in 2014]. At the age of 17, Madden began working for the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad  Company  repairing rail cars in Clinton.

On 21 June 1916, Madden enlisted in the Iowa National Guard. He was variously stationed  with the Iowa Battery A Field Artillery Unit at Fort Dodge, Des Moines, Iowa; Fort Logan H. Roots in Arkansas; Camp Cody in New Mexico; and subsequently saw service on the Mexican border. Madden suffered an injury to his right thumb while loading ammunition for Brownsville, Texas. He was later transferred to France during World War I where he continued to serve with Iowa’s Battery A First Field Artillery.

During his military service, Madden met Gladys Keithly, who greeted his troop train as it passed through Kirksville, Missouri, where Gladys resided. As the train left the station, she handed Madden her handkerchief on which she had written her name and address. They corresponded during the war.

Following his service, Madden returned to his position as a rail car repairman. He married Gladys Keithly 22 November 1920. They were the parents of three children: Charleen [Roger Smith], Geraldine [Charles Abbott], and Patricia [Harry Schawl]. Eventually, Madden was promoted  to rail car inspector. He worked for the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Company for fifty years. Madden was a member of St. Mary’s Church, the Humphrey Paulsen VFW Post 2788, and the Loyal Order of the Moose. On 1 July, 1972 Francis Raymond Madden passed away. He is buried in the Memorial Park Cemetery in Clinton, Iowa.    

Scope and Content
This collection, spanning the years from 1916 to 1982, largely contains the WWI and/or Mexican Border service correspondence, photographs, documents, military handbooks of Francis R. Madden as part of Iowa Battery A First Field Artillery of the Iowa National Guard; household accounting ledgers kept by Madden for the years from 1926 to 1972; and family vital record data. Perhaps the most important portion of this collection are the two photograph albums of black-and-white, dated, and identified  prints of Madden; his comrades; military materiel, weaponry, housing, and scenery taken during his service with the Iowa National Guard on the Mexican border in 1916.

Ac. 5871
1 ½ linear ft.

1. Diaries with copies of typed transcriptions by granddaughter Faye Abbott Alexander Dittemore; 1916-1918; 1917-1918; 1918-1919; 1920-1922

2. WWI correspondence of Francis R. Madden (to Gladys Keithly: 4 October 1918 - 13 December 1918, 13 letters)

3. Photograph album inscribed “Brownsville Texas 1916 Mexican Border Service,” containing ca. sixty black-and-white prints with captions  

4. Photograph  album  inscribed “Army and Miscellaneous,” containing ca. eighty black-and-white prints with captions (some illegible)

5. Photocopies of military documents (Mexican Border and WWI service of Francis R. Madden)

6. Soldier’s Handbook of the Rifle and Score Book for Special Course, 1917; New Testament, 1918; Souvenir postcard booklet, France; The Army and the Navy of the United States of America, Prudential Insurance Company,1917

7. Madden Household Accounting Ledgers, 1926 – 1939, (7)

8. Madden Household Accounting Ledgers, 1940 – 1964 (2)

9. Madden Household Accounting Ledgers, 1930-1972 (2) a. Day book contains 1912 entries for costs of photographic developing supplies; birth dates, marriages, and death dates of  family members; b. Record books containing  taxes, railroad pension payments; insurance policies; dues

10. Newspaper articles re: marriage of Francis R. Madden and Gladys Keithly and obituary of Francis R. Madden; sweetheart jewelry (military canteen charm); commemorative invitation of marriage of Francis R. Madden and Gladys Keithly; Infant feeding table; photocopy of Madden/Keithly marriage certificate; Death certificate of Francis R. Madden; Iowa National Guard certificate and Iowa Battery A roster; Widows’ WWI membership card, Gladys Madden, dtd. 31 Dec. 1982; World War I era postcards (24)


11. Military Photographs - Identified/Unidentified (21)

Panoramic black-and-white photograph of U.S. Army officers (Lawton, Parker, and Allen penciled beneath images of officers), n.d. (rolled)

Unidentified panoramic black-and-white photograph of military camp scene, possibly on the Mexican border, n,d, (rolled)

Iowa Field Artillery Roster (Battery A) Fort Logan H. Roots, Arkansas [transferred to museum]