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Encyclopedia Dubuque


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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.

DEMING, Judson Keith

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Photo courtesy: Telegraph Herald

DEMING, Judson Keith. (Sheldon, VT, Sept. 18, 1858-Dubuque, IA, Jan. 21, 1953). Deming's mother brought him to Dubuque when he was nine years old. Nine years after the death of her husband, she married Alonzo VAN DUZEE. (1)

Demings' banking career began in 1876 when he dropped out of high school to work at a messenger for SECOND NATIONAL BANK. It ended in 1932 when he retired as president of the CONSOLIDATED NATIONAL BANK. Deming founded the Dubuque chapter of the American Red Cross. Using the pseudonym of Jay Cady, developed from his initials, J. K. D., Deming wrote Moving the Waters (1909), The Stake (1912), and many short stories. (2)

At the time of his death, Deming had been elected first vice-president of the DUBUQUE CASKET COMPANY for the sixtieth time. (3)

Among his civic activities, Deming held the chairmanship of the board of trustees for the MOUNT PLEASANT HOME, UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE, Firemen's Pension Board and the Police Pension Board. He served as a trustee of the DUBUQUE BOYS' CLUB and served on the board of education from 1901 to 1907 including a term as president in 1906. He held the office of vice-president for Iowa of the American Bankers Association (1893-1894) and was president of the Iowa Bankers Association (1896-1897). (4) The history of the American Red Cross of the Tri-States began in 1916. In that year, according to a statement made in 1949 by Deming, he invited a number of friends to his office. Asking each to place a dollar on his desk, he then informed them that they were members of the Red Cross. (5)

In 1949 Deming was recognized by the Dubuque County Chapter of the American Red Cross for his forty years of service. It was in October, 1910 that Governor Beryl F. Carroll appointed him treasurer of the first Iowa Red Cross board. (6)

Deming married Miss May Worthington who years later co-founded with Miss Clara Hamlin the DUBUQUE ACADEMY OF MUSIC. (7)



1. Goodspeed, Weston Arthur, History of Dubuque County, Iowa. Chicago: Goodspeed Historical Association, 1911, p. 566

2. Ibid.

3. Ibid.

4. Ibid.

5. "40-Year Button to J. K. Deming," Telegraph-Herald, October 2, 1949, p. 17

6. Ibid.

7. "Mrs. Groff Dies at 95," Telegraph Herald, February 10, 1953, p. 14