An experienced rancher, who has met with success in his own enterprises, and who also successfully served his community as president of the Farm Bureau for Merced County, Dwight K. Barnell is well known in the San Joaquin Valley. Born in Benton County, Iowa, on March 15, 1877, he is the fifth of six children born to his parents, Aaron J. and Elizabeth (Youel) Barnell, both natives of Indiana. Aaron J. Barnell settled in Iowa in the early fifties, and served as justice of the peace for his township in that State. During the Civil War he had served three years with the 20th Iowa Volunteers, receiving his honorable discharge as a sergeant, and after many years spent in Iowa, he settled in Los Angeles, in 1906, and there his death occurred.

Dwight K. Barnell and his brothers were reared and educated in Iowa and farmed the home place. He received a good education, graduating from the Benton High School, and then taking a course at the Cedar Rapids Business College. In 1914 he went to Barnes County, N. D., and there was superintendent of the farm lands of the Dennstedt Land Company. Preceded by his father and brothers, he came to California in 1917, and joined with his brother in operating the land left by their father, the Barnell-Merced Tract, which that farseeing rancher had purchased in 1912.

The marriage of Mr. Barnell, on June 14, 1905, united him with Miss Estella McGranahan, a native of Newhall, Iowa. She is a graduate of the Academy of Music in Cedar Rapids and was well known in musical circles in that city. Four children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Barnell: Charles G., in the class of 1925, Merced High School; Helen, also in that class; Robert and Elizabeth, both in the Tuttle Grammar School.

A man of strong public spirit, Mr. Barnell was elected a director in the Merced Irrigation District, from District No. 5. And as president of the Merced Farm Bureau, elected for 1923-1924, he efficiently carried on the work and directed this fast-growing organization in sixteen local centers.

History of Merced County California With a Biographical Review OF The Leading Men and Woman of the County Who Have Been Identified with Its Growth and Development from Early Days to the Present

Author: John Outcalt (1925)

Dwight K. Barnell, page: 720