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Gc iVl. L. 





3 1833 01103 1751 




LABETTE County, Kansas, 



Representative Citizens. 


Hon. Nelson Case. 

'History is Philosophy TeachlMg by Examples." 

rt'niJsiiED nv 


Geouck RiciiMdNi), I'RKS.; S. Hakmek Neff, Sec'v; C. K. Arnold, Tkkas. 

Chi(,a(;o, Illinois. 




All the biographical siietches published in this volume were 
submitted to their respective subjects, or to the subscribers, from 
whom the facts were primarily obtained, for their approval or 
correction before going to press; and a reasonable time was 
allowed in each case for the return of the type-written copies. 
Most of them were returned to us within the time allotted, or 
before the work was printed, after being corrected or revised; 
and these may therefore be regarded as reasonably accurate. 

A few, however, were not returned to us; and, as we have 
no means of knowing whether they contain errors or not, we 
cannot vouch for their accuracy. In justice to our readers, and 
to r&nder this work more valuable for reference ^purposes, we 
have indicated these uncorrected sketches by a small asterisk (■■"), 
placed immediately after the name of the subject. They will 
all be lound on the last pages of the book. 



HE aim of the publishers of this volume has been to secure for the historic portion 
thereof full and accurate information respecting all subjects therein treated, and to 
present the data thus gathered in a clear and impartial manner. If, their hope, 
they have succeeded in this endeavor, the credit is mainly due to the diligent and exhaustive 
research of that eminent pioneer resident of Labette county, Hon. Nelson Case, of Oswego, 
whose high character and profound erudition are recognized throughout the State of Kansas. 
His patient and conscientious labor in the compilation and the presentation of facts is shown 
in the historical portion of the volume. This record gives a comprehensive account of the 
organization of the county, and of the leading events in the stages of its development from 
1865 to the present time, as set forth in the table of contents. Certain subjects which 
Judge Case hoped to introduce have been omitted for lack of requisite data, but all topics 
and occurrences are included which are essential to the usefulness of the history. Although 
the purpose of the author was to limit the narrative to the close of 1900, he has deemed it 
proper to touch on some matters overlapping that period. For any possible errors that 
may occur in the work, the indulgence of our readers is asked. 

The reviews of resolute and strenuous lives, which make up the biographical depart- 
ment of the volume, and whose authorship is entirely independent of that of the history, are 
admirably adapted to foster local ties, to inculcate patriotism and to emphasize the rewards 
of industry, dominated by intelligent purpose. They constitute a most appropriate medium 
of perpetuating personal annals and will be of incalculable value to the descendants of those 
therein commemorated. They bring into bold relief careers of enterprise and thrift and 
make manifest valid claims to honorable distinction. If "Biography is the only true 
History," it is obviously the duty of men of the present time to preserve in this enduring 
form the story of their lives in order that their posterity may dwell on the successful strug- 
gles thus recorded, and profit by their example. These sketches, replete with stirring inci- 
dents and intense experiences, will naturally prove to most of the readers of this book its 
most attractive feature. 


In the aggregate of personal memoirs, thus collated, will be found a vivid epitome of 
the growth of Labette county, which will fitly supplement the historic statement; for the 
development of the county is identified with that of the men and women to whom it is 
attributable. The publishers have endeavored in the preparation of the work to pass over 
no feature of it slightingly, but give heed to the minutest details, and thus to invest it with 
a substantial accuracy which no other treatment would afford. The result has amply justi- 
fied the care thus exercised, for in our belief no more reliable production, under the circum- 
stances, could be laid before its readers. 

We have given special prominence to the portraits of representative citizens, which 
appear throughout this volume, and believe they will prove a most interesting feature of the 
work. We have sought to illustrate the different spheres of industrial and professional 
achievement as conspicuously as possible. To those who have kindly interested themselves 
in the successful preparation of this work, and who have voluntarily contributed most useful 
information and data, we herewith tender our grateful acknowledgment. 


Chicago, III., August, 1901. 


Early Historv 11 

Origin of our Laws and the Sources of Titles to our Homes— Discoveries — Charters — Treaties— Terri- 
torial Government — The Osages— Survey of Reservation — Schools— Chiefs— Towns — Battle— The Two 
Bands — Character— Burying Grounds — Treaties with the Osages— John Mathews— Early Expeditions- 
Early Settlements — Surveys — LRbette — Boundary. 

Permanent Settle'hent, Organization, and Growth 27 

Organization of the County — Land Titles — Hardships— First Administration— Marriages— County-Seat 
and County-Sifet Contests — County Buildings— Furnishing County Offices— Self-Organized Courts — Dis- 
trict Court— Home fo-- the Poor— List of Superintendents of Poor-Farm— Bridges— U. S. Census— As- 
sessment for 1867 — Tax Sales— County Expenses — Colored People— Athletics— Official Delinquencies — 
Reception of President Hayes. 

Industrial— County Organizations 48 

First Wheat Crops— Castor Beans — Tame Grass — Cotton Industry— Grasshoppers -Fish and Game — 
Bounty— Dehornmg Stock — Texas Fever— Hedge and Weed Law — Natural Gas — Tables showing Acre- 
age, Product and Value of Field Crops— Farmers' Organizations (Grartge, Alliance, &:c.)— Fair Associa- 
tions — Agricultural and Horticultural Societies — Labette County Historical Society — Other Local Organ- 
izations — G. A. R. 

Criminal Matters (is 

Assassination, lS;c., S:c. — The Bender Slaughter-Pen — X'igilance Committee— Citizens' Protective Asso- 

MiSH Al'S 78 

Drownings — Conflagrations — Boiler Explosions — Deaths by Fire, &c., &:c. 

Meteorological *. 81 

The Weather, embracing the period from ISfjrj to 1900. 

Storms : 92 

Municipal Townships 94 

A condensed History of all the Townships in the County from the Date of the Organization of each 
Township up to the Present Time. 

Towns and Cities lis 

Proposed Towns (containing some account of the various towns which at one time had an actual or 
'" paper " existence, but are now dead)— The Cities, Towns and Stations in Labette County as existing at 

Educational liili 

Public Schools- -The First Schools in the County— Detailed History of each School District— Grading 
Country Schools — Teachers' Institutes— County Teachers' Association — Private Schools— Couiity High 
School — Hobson Normal Institute— Oswego College — Osage College for Young Ladies— Literary Circles. 



Roads Attempted to he secured — Roads Constructed- 

-Railroad Strikes. 





Brief Account of all the Conventions of the Various Political Parties, beginning with those of 1866— Can- 
didates for Judicial Honors— Elections— Commissioner Districts— Legislative Apportionment— List of 
Officers— List and Terms of Chairmen of Board of County Commissioners— List of Official Papers. 

The Struggle for Temperance 24. 

The First Licensed Saloon— The Crusade Spiric— Reform Club— Breweries— Murphy Meetings— Dispens- 
ing with Petition— Temperance Organizations— The Prohibition Canvass— First Anniversary of Prohibi- 
tion— Organizations for Enforcing the Law— Druggists' Reports— "Original Package" Houses. 


A Complete List of the Postoffices and Postmasters of Labette County, from 1865 to the Present. 

The Press ■ '^^^ 

Brief account of each Newspaper and Periodical which has been Published in the County. 

Bench and Bar 281 

Religious Organizations 297 

History of every Religious Organization (embracing Churches, Sabbath Schools, Bible Societies, Y. M. C. 
A., &c., &c.) which has existed in the County. 

The Settlers' Contest for Their Homes 359 

Preliminary Steps in the Contest— Settlers' Meetings— Basis for their Claims— Action of Congress and of 
the Land Department— Attitude of the Local Press— Settlers' Protective Association— Its Constitution- 
Legal Measures — Further Legislation — Final Victory. 


fiisiory of Cabetie County 


The Englibh claim to this continent, like 
that of all the European governments which 
made claim thereto, was based on discovery. In 
1496 King Henry \'II granted a commission 
to John Cabot to discover countries then un- 
kno-wn to Christian people, and to take pos- 
session of them in the name of the King of 
England. Under this commission Cabot and 
his son Sebastian the following year discovered 
the continent of North America, and setting 
u]) the English standard, took possession of 
the same in the name of the King of England 
some fourteen months prior to the discovery 
of the main land of America by Columbus. In 
1498, John Cabot having in the meantime 
died. Sebastian made another voyage and ex- 
plored the coast as far south as Virginia. 
From these disco\-eries England dates her 
claim to this continent. 

In 1606 James I granted a charter to Sir 
Thomas Gates and others, authorizing them to 
colonize the Xew World. Under this charter 
two companies were formed. One, called the 
London Company, was to send out the "First 
Colony of A'irginia," who were to settle be- 
tween the 34th and 38th degrees of north lati- 

tude, and whose possessions were to extend 
inland without bound; under this grant the- 
first permanent English settlement in America; 
was made, at Jamestown, in 1607. The other 
^ company under this charter, called the \\'estern 
I Company, was to send out the "Second Col- 
j ony of Virginia," who were to settle between 
I the 41st and 45th degrees of north latitude. 
This count}- is embraced within the first of 
these grants. 
j On May 23, 1609, the London Company 
j was granted a new charter by King James, 
I under letters patent running to Robert, Earl 
of Salisbury, and others', constituting them a 
body corporate under the style of '"The Treas- 
urer and Company of Adventurers and Plant- 
ers of the City of London for the First Colony 
nf A'irginia." By this patent the company 
was granted "All, the lands, countries and ter- 
I ritories situate, lying and being in that part 
of Xorth America called Virginia, from the 
point of land called Cape or Point Comfort 
all along the seacoast to the northward two 
hundred miles; and from said Cape or Point 
j Comfort all along the seacoast to the south- 
warrl two hundred miles, and all that space and 


circuit of land lying from the seacoast of the 
precinct aforesaid u]) into the land throughout 
from the sea, west and northwest ; and also 
all the islands lying within one hundred miles 
along the coast of hoth seas of the precinct 
aforesaid, with al] the soil, grounds, rights, 
pri\'ileges and appurtenances to these territor- 
ies belonging, and in the letters j^atent particu- 
larly enumerated." 

In ]\Iarch, 1612, a third charter was 
granted this London company, but without 
changing the boundaries of its grant from 
what they were under its prior charter. 

B}' the terms of the first charter of which 
I have spoken, the superior council of the com- 
pany were appointed by the king: and under 
the king's advice and direction this company 
was to ordain and remove the resident council. 
The king retained the supreme legislative au- 
thority in himself. Emigrants were promised 
that thev and their children should continue 
Englishmen. The state religion of England 
was established here, and capital punishment 
was prescribed for several offenses. Lands 
were to descend according to the laws of Eng- 

By the second charter the powers reserved 
to the king in the first were given to the com- 
pany. The council were to be elected by the 
shareholders, and they might endow emigrants 
with the rights of Englishmen. Colonists 
were given a few acres of ground, and the 
right of private property was firmly estab- 
lished. By the third charter, power was trans- 
ferred from the council to the company, 
through which the colonists might be granted 
all the rights belonging to the people of En^'- 
land. Under this charter the first American 
representative legislature assembled at James- 
town on July 30, 1 619. In 1624, in an action 
of quo warranto, this corporation was dissolved 

by judgment of the court of King's Bench, 
and its rights reverted to the crown of Eng- 

By the treaty of Paris, signed on Febru- 
ary 10, 1763, entered into between Great Brit- 
ain, Spain and France, the latter released to 
the former all claim to the territory east of the 
Mississippi except New Orleans, while all the 
territory west of that river was ceded to 
France. From this time we ceased to be a 
dependency of the English and became at- 
tached to the French crown. 

In 1762, by the secret treaty of Fcntain- 
bleau, France ceded upper Louisiana, embrac- 
ing" the territory we now occupy, to Spain, 
though the latter did not take possession of 
the same till 1770. 

On October i, 1800, by the treaty of St. 
Ildefonso, Spain retroceded Louisiana to 
France. Those who lived here from 1770 to 
1800 were tlierefore under SiDanish rule, and 
all changes of title during that time must have 
been by Spanish laws. 

On April 30, 1803, the treatv of Paris was 
concluded, by the provisions of which the 
French Republic sold the entire pro\-ince of 
Louisiana to the United States, since which 
time we ha\-e been a part of her territoVy and 
subject to her laws. 


On October 31, 1803, the law was appro^•ed 
authorizing the President to take possession of 
the French (Louisiana) purchase, and to pro- 
vide for its government until a government 
should be provided by Congress. 

On March 26, 1804. the President approved 
the act dividing the French purchase into two 
districts, viz. : the Territorv of Orleans, to em- 



brace all the purchase lying south of the 33CI 
degree of latitude, for which a territorial gov- 
ernment was pro\'ided ; and all the purchase 
lying north of that line was designated the Dis- 
trict of Louisiana, the government of which 
was placed under the go\-ernor and judges of 
the Indiana Territory, and these officers were 
authorized to exercise legislative as well as ex- 
ecutive and judicial functions over the district. 

In pursuance of the authority conferred by 
this act of Congress, the governor and judges 
of the Indiana Territory ordained and promul- 
gated a body of laws, most of which went into 
operation October i, 1804. \'arious crimes 
were defined and punishments therefor pro- 
\-ided; courts were established; slavery was rec- 
ognized throughout the territory, and minute 
regulations were prescribed for the conduct and 
government of negroes ; provision was made for 
recording legal instruments, for licensing at- 
torneys, for practice in court, and for mar- 

By act of Congress of i\Iarch 3, 1805, the 
District of Louisiana was changed to the Terri- 
tory of Louisiana, and a territorial government 
provided, consisting of a governor and three 
judges, wdio were also to exercise legislative 

By act of Congress approved June 4, 18 12, 
and which went into operation on the first i\Ion- 
day of December. 1812. the name of the Terri- 
tory w-as changed from Louisiana to Missouri, 
and a legislative assembly was added to the ex- 
ecutive and judicial departments of govern- 

By a law of the General Assembly of the 
Territorv of iMissouri, approved January 19, 
1816, the common law of England, so far as 
not inconsistent with the laws of tlie United 
States, was declared to be in force, but the 

<loctrine of survivorshi]) in case of joint ten- 
ancy, it was expressly declared, should never be 
in force. 

On i\Iarch 6, 1820, the famous compromise 
measure of Henry Clay became a law by the 
appro\-al of the President, wherel}y that pnrtion 
of the Territory of IMissouri embraced within 
the bounds of the present State of IVIissouri 
was authorized to form a constitution and be 
admitted into the Union as a State, and from 
all the remainder of said Territory, lying north 
of 36 degrees 30 minutes, slavery and invol- 
untar}- servitude were forever excluded. In 
pursuance of this authority a constitution was 
adopted and iMissouri was fully admitted into 
the Lhiion by proclamation of the President, 
dated August 10, 1821. 

In 1850 the slavery agitation was reopened 
in Congress, and several acts passed as another 
compromise, among them the establishment of 
territorial government for New iMe.xico and 
Utah, with provisions in each fur their admis- 
sion "into the Union with or without slavery, 
as their constitutions may prescribe at the time 
of their admission ;" and an act making more 
stringent provisions for the apprehension and 
return of fugitive slaves. 

By "An act to regulate trade and inter- 
course with the Indian tribes, and to preserve 
peace on the frontiers," ajjpnned June 30, 
1834, Congress declared all the territory west 
of iMissouri and Arkansas "Indian Country," 
and attached, among others, the Osage coun- 
try to the Territory of Arkansas, and declared 
the laws of the United States providing for 
the punishment of crimes committed in ter- 
ritory under the exclusive jurisdiction of the 
United States to be in force in such Indian 
Countrv. This arrangement continued to the 
formation if the territorial go\-ernment. 



By "An act to organize the Territories of 
Nebraska and Kansas," approved May 30, 
1854, Congress organized the territory now 
forming the State of Kansas into a Territory, 
and provided for it a go\-ernment consisting 
of executive, legislative and judicial depart- 
ments. By Sec. 27, writs of error were to be 
alliiwcd fnmi the Supreme Court ijf the Ter- 
ritory t.i the Supreme Court of the United 
States "in all cases invoh-ing title to slaves," 
without regard to the amount in controversy; 
and pro\'ision was made for enforcing the Fu- 
gitive Slave act of 1850. 

In July, 1855, the first territorial leg'sla- 
ture met, and enacted what were popularly 
known as the "Bogus Laws." They were al- 
niost a transcript "of the laws of Missouri. 
Some recognition seems to have been given 
them in one or two of the succeeding sessions 
of the legislature, by way of amendment, and 
yet when the people had (obtained control of 
matters and had taken them from the hands of 
the "border ruffians." no one ever paid any at- 
tention to the pr .\'isions of these statutes, 
when they conflicted with theh- convictions of 
nght; an<l, on February 11, 1859, the wh::le 
body of the enactmnts of 1855 were repealed 
by a single sentence. The most objectionable 
feature of these old laws was the one relat- 
ing to slavery. 

By chapter 151 of this enactment, slaverv 
was recognized as an existing institution, and 
severe penalties were enforced for anv inter- 
ference therewith. By this law it was made a 
felony to deny the right of i)roperty in slaves, 
or to print or circulate any book, pamphlet or 
paper denying such right. But this chapter 
was repealed on February 9, 1858. 

The only other provision particularly 

affecting the people of this county was the cre- 
ation of the county of Dorn, embracing what 
is now Neosho and Labette counties. 

On January 29, 1861, Kansas was admit- 
ted into the Union under the Wyandotte Con- 
stitution. Under this constitution and the 
laws made by authority thereof most of ns 
have lived since our residence in this county. 


Whether or not the Osages were the aut- 
ochthones of this county, I leave for the anti- 
quarians to determine, but for the purpose of 
this work I shall not go back of their settle- 
ment here to inquire who, if anyone, preceded 
them to this country. The Government's in- 
tercourse with this tribe seems to have com- 
menced in 1808, when on November 10, 1808, 
a treaty was concluded at Fort Clark, on the 
Missouri River, by the terms of which the 
United States received the tribe into its fellow- 
ship and under its protection, and the Osages 
ceded to the Lhiited States all their territory 
lying east of a line running south from Fort 
Clark to the Arkansas River. The next im- 
portant treatv with this tribe was made June 
2, 1825, at St. Louis. By the ijrovisions of 
this treaty the Osages relinciuished to the 
Government all, their land lying south of the 
Kansas Ri\'er and north and west of the Red 
River, east of a line drawn south from the 
sources of the Kansas through Rock Saline, 
excepting a strip 50 miles wide extending from 
a line 25 miles west of the Missouri State line 
to the west line of the ceded territory. The 
southern part of Allen, together with Neosho 
and Labette counties, formed the territory on 
the east line of this reservation, which extend- 
ed west nearly across the State. 

Soon after the conclusion of this treaty-, the 


Osages moved to Kansas, and lieg-an settling 
along the Neosho and Verdigris rivers ; these 
settlements commenced as early as 1827. 
Prior to this their home had been farther east, 
and this had formed their hunting-ground. 
Here they were when our people commenced 
settling this county, in 1865. 


The northeast corner of this reservation 
was established by Major Anp'us Langham, 
in 1827, and the east and south lines as far 
west as the Arkansas Ri\'er were surveyed and 
established by him that year. It was not until 
1836 that the north line was definitely sur- 
veyed and established by lohn C. McCoy. 

About 1826 the Presbyterians established 
a school on the left bank of the ^larais des 
Cygnes, near the present site of Pappinsville, 
Bates county, Missouri, called Harmony Mis- 
sion. A year later they established another 
school, at Saline, in the Cherokee Nation. 
These schools did not prosper, and after they 
were broken up the Presbyterians erected a 
large house on the east bank of Four-lMile 
Creek, in Neosho county, just above its junc- 
tion with the Neosho. Father John Schoen- 
maker started the Catholic Mission in the 
spring of 1847. 

Parties who have long been acquainted 
with the Osages tell me that to entitle a party 
to the position of civil chief, he had to have a 
mother of a chief bearing family. The Beaver 
family, if not the only, was the principal one 

from whom the women came whose children 
were entitled to obtain the position of civil 
chief. There was not only a principal civil 
chief, but also the chiefs who led the bands in 
war: to this latter class Chetopa l)el.)nged. It 
is said he could not becume a ci\il chief, not 
having a mother who pruduced a candidate for 
that position; but he was the principal war 
chief, and when on the war-path outranked the 
civil chief. He was a great friend of Dr. 
Lisle. It was for him that the town of Che- 
topa was named. White Hair, who was the 
principal chief on the arrival of the first while 
settlers, was a man of great torce and author- 
ity. He was born in Neosho county, about 
1834, and died of consumjnion. at his camp 
on the Verdigris. Decemlier 24, 1869. 

The position of the chiefs town, as that 
of the towns of the others, \-aried from time 
to time. Their improvements were not such 
as to make it impossilile to change location 
when circumstances seemetl to demand it. On 
a map of the Osage country, made in 1836 by 
John C. ]\IcCoy, who surveyed and ran the 
norih line of the reservation, "White Hair 
Town" was located on the west side of the 
Neosho River, al)out one-fnurth of the way 
from the north to the south Ijoundary of the 
reservation. A copy of this map. which was 
furnished to the St. Louis office of the Bureau 
of Indian Affairs, is now in our State Histori- 
cal Society. Subsequently we find White 
Hair Town at a point farther down the river, 
but probably all the time it was somewhere in 
Neo.sho county. At the foot of the bluff 
north and east of Oswego, as well as at other 
points within a few miles of Oswego, are still 
to be found unmistakalde e\-'dences cf the sites 


of their towns, wliich must lia\-e been inhab- 
ited for very manj- years. Dr. W. S. Newlon 
has made something of a study of the subject 
of their villages, implements, etc. 

About 1837 there was a bloody encounter 
between a band of Cherokees under the com- 
mand of Captain Rogers, who hved at the salt 
works on Grand River, and who was an uncle 
of Lewis Rogers, of Chetopa, and the Little 
Town band of Osages, in a grove a few miles 
south of Oswego. About 100 of the Osages, 
embracing nearly all of the band, were killed. 
White Hair, who was then a small boy, and 
who afterward became the principal chief, was 
away from the band at tl:e time, and was thus 
spared. The Osages were all drunk, and were 
butchered — men, women and children alike. 
This butchery was in revenge for an expedi- 
tion that they had made down in the Cherokee 
country a short time before. Dr. Lisle has 
told me he got this information direct from 
White Hair himself, and also the same from 
a man by the name of Etter, who was with 
Captain Rogers on the Cherokee side. 

It is said that in 1862 or 1863 a band of 
Missouri rebels on their way to the western 
plains or mountains, were surprised by a band 
of Osages in what is now Osage township in 
this county ; the rebels were surroiuided by the 
Indians, and all but two were killed. In re- 
gard to this matter I have no information 
except that which I get from the old settlers, 
who in turn claim to have .gotten it from the 
Indians, or someone with them. 


Rev. Isaac McCoy in his history of Bap- 
tist Indian ^ilissions, on page 358, says that 

the Osages li\-ed on the ^lissouri in two settle- 
ments, and were known among Indians and 
those familiar with Indian affairs, as upper 
settlement or people, and lower settlement or 
people ; and remarks that the whites, who were 
ignorant of their language, fancied that one 
was' called '"tall people" and the other "short 
people." He says that this was the origin of 
the designation Great and Little Osages. 
Those designated the "upper people." which 
the whites took to mean tall people, being the 
Great Osages, and those designated "lower 
people," supposed bv the whites to mean short 
people, the Little Osages. He savs: "In 
most of our treaties with the Osages thev ha\-e 
been represented as composed of two distinct 
bands, called Great and Little Osages; no 
such distinction in reality exists, or ever did 
exist. The supposition originated in the ig- 
norance and awkwardness of traders among 
them." This account was given in 1828, and 
seems to furnish a plausible theory of the 
origin of this designation ; but we must remem- 
ber that these terms were used in ijur first 
treaty with them, in 1808. 


I have not sufficient accpiaintance with In- 
dian matters to be able to attempt anything 
like a description of the Osages, or to assign 
to them the character to which they are prob- 
ably entitled, but the facts of their history, as 
we gather them from the reports of their do- 
ings, lead me to suppose that they were not of 
that savage and barbarous disposition which 
some have attributed to them, and which char- 
acterizes so many of the Indian tribes. I 
should rather say of them that they were ex- 
pert cattle and horse thieves, and that among 
them a person's life was less in danger than 
his jewelry and clothing". 



The mcule of Ixirial among the Osages was 
lo place the corpse in a sitting posture on the 
ground, at most only in a slight excavation, 
and pile ariiund it a heap of stones for its pro- 
tection. When the early settlers came here 
many such graves were seen in which the 
skeleton was remaining intact, and in some in- 
stances the flesh scarcely yet having entirely 
disappeared. There were a number of these 
burial-places located in this county — one in 
Neosho township, on the count v line, ijne or 
more where Oswego now is, and others farther 


The treaty with this tribe in which our 
people are especially interested was concludefl 
at Canville trading-post, nearly on the site, but 
a short distance east of the i^resent station of 
Shaw, between Erie and Chanute, on the 2gth 
of September. 1865. M. W. Reynolds was 
clerk of the ci;>mmissi;jn which negotiated this 
treaty. When it reached the Senate its rati- 
fication with certain amendments was made on 
June 26, 1866. These amendments were ac- 
cepted by the Indians on September 21, 1866, 
and the treaty as thus amended was pro- 
claimed by the President and became operative 
January 21, 1867. 

By the first article of this treaty a strip 30 
miles in width on the east end of their lands 
was sold to the United States. This was 
afterwards known as the Osage Ceded Lands, 
and is principally embraced in the counties of 
Neosho and Labette. 

By the second article of the treaty the 
Osages ceded to the United States in trust a 
strip 20 miles in width off the north side of 
the remainder of their lands. This was known 

as the Osage Trust Lands. The remaining 
portion of their lands was thereafter kmjwn as 
the Osage Diminished Reservation. 

On May 27, 1868, another treaty was con- 
cluded with the Osages, on Drum Creek, which 
was commi.nly known as the Sturgis treaty, 
because of the controlling spirit of William 
Sturgis in securing its negotiation. By the 
terms of this treaty the entire tract included 
in said Diminished Reservation, estimated to 
contain 8,000,000 acres, was sold to the Leav- 
enworth, Lawrence & Galvestmi I'l. R. Co., but 
supp; sed to be largely for the l.ienefit of ]\Ir. 
Stuug'is,^ who had secured the treaty, at the 
agreed price of $1,600,000, or about 20 cents 
an acre. 

By the time this treaty reached the Senate, 
the settlers were aroused, and at once a deter- 
mined fight was made against its ratification. 
Great credit is due to Congressman Clark for 
the active measures by him inaugurated in the 
House to bring to light the objectionable 
features of the treaty. Its ratification was 
never secured. 

By an act approved July 15, 1870. the Pres- 
ident was directed to remove the Osage In- 
dians from the State of Kansas to the Indian 
Territory as soon as they would agree thereto. 

About the middle of September following, 
a council with the Indians was held on Drum 
Creek, and arrangements agreed on for their 
final removal from the State. This removal 
took place within the following few months, 
since which time their home has been in the 
Territory just south of the State line. 


John Mathews was a native, some say of 
Virginia and others of Kentucky, and at a 
very early day — usually given at about 1840, 


but the exact date is not known — he came 
among the Osages as a trader, and became 
their blacksmith. His name does not appear 
among those on the Government roll of black- 
smiths for the Osages in 1843, ^"d if ^^e had 
come among them at that time he had prob- 
ably not secured Government employment. 
His name appears among the Government 
blacksmiths for the Senecas and Shawnees in 
1839, so it seems certain that between that time 
and 1843 he came amcng the Osages. He set- 
tled near the edge of the bluff in the east part 
of Oswego, where he maintained a trading- 
post and erected several buildings. These build- 
ings stood partly on what is now block 61, and 
extended north across Fourth avfenue and on 
to block 60. They were used by him as a resi- 
dence, a place where travelers were entertained, 
for his store and warehouse, and for the 
care of his stock. The remains of the ruins 
of some qf these buildings may still be seen 
in the street about 125 feet east of the northeast 
corner of the Park, on block 52. He got 
water from the spring at the intersection of 
Fourth avenue and Union street. [Mathews 
was a very popular man among the Indians. 
He had for his wife a full-blooded Osage, and 
raised a large family of children. He had an 
extensive trade, and is said to have accumu- 
lated a large property, all of which was de- 
stroyed or captured at the time of his death. 
He had some fine stock, and kept a race-course 
just south of his residence. .Vt the outbreak 
of the war he joined his interests with the 
Southern Confederacy, became a colonel in 
the Rebel army, and generally has the reputa- 
tion of being engaged in the sacking of Hum- 
boldt, in August, 1 861; but Dr. Lisle, who 
knew him well, says he was not with the force 
at the time of the occurrence of that event, and 
did not arrive there until after the raid of the 

place, and was in no wise responsible for it. 
After this the United States forces became 
very much exasperated at the conduct of the 
Rebels' in the sacking of Humboldt, and de- 
termined to take speedy revenge. Mathews, 
being credited with having conducted the raid, 
was sought after, and those in pursuit deter- 
mined upon his capture or death, and a party 
was organized to proceed south and take him. 

Col. W. A. Johnson, of Garnett, and Dr. 
George Lisle, of Chetopa, have furnished me 
the information on which the following ac- 
count is based. 

One detachment came down the river from 
Humboldt, and another from Fort Lincoln, in 
Bourbon county, the two detachments expect- 
ing to meet near the mouth of Lightning 
Creek. This force was composed of some en- 
listed men and many civilians who had not been 
mustered into the service, numbering perhaps 
two or three hundred, only a part of whom 
arrived at the place wdiere Mathews was 
found. They were all under the command of 
Lieutenant-Colonel Blunt. Among the civil- 
ians who were in the company were Preston 
B. Plumb, of Emporia, and \\'. A. Johnson, of 
Garnett. They marched down on the east 
side of the Neosho River, crossed the river at 
Rocky Ford, and came up and surrounded the 
house owned by Wni. Blythe on the west side 
of the. Neosho, and just above the State line, 
being in what is now Cherokee county. The 
house was then occupied by Lewis Rogers. It 
was now just daylight: ]\Iathews had come 
from his home the day before, stopping 
at Dr. Lisle's in the evening to get something 
to eat, and then, on his way south, arrived at 
the home of Rogers after dark. The scouts 
had seen him go there, and the troops were 
reasonably certain that they had found the man 
for whom they were hunting. A demand was 


made that ]\Iathe\vs he delix-ered to them. 
The house was surruunded hy cum and hig-h 
weeds; ^lathews came out of the liack door, 
partially dressed, with a diiuhle-ljarreled shot- 
gun in his hand ; he was at once riddled with 
bullets ; no une knew whose shot did the work. 
This was in the latter part of September, 1861 ; 
corn was then just getting ripe enough for use. 
That day a part of the troops returned to Che- 
topa settlement and arrested all the men whom 
they found living there at the time, and took 
them to iSIathews' place, or Little Town, where 
that e\ening they were tried by court-martial. 
Among those arrested were James Bowles, 
George Ewers, Mr. White, Joel Coiubs, and 
Dr. George Lisle. It was ascertained that 
Combs was a government detective, and had 
been working up evidence to implicate some of 
the residents as sympathizers with the Rebel 
cause. Colonel Blunt presided at the trial, 
and Captain Brooks acted as clerk, .\fter a 
full investigation, and all the testimony had 
been introduced, nothing was found impli- 
cating any of the parties arrested, and they 
were all discharged. They were allowed to 
remain under Government protection over 
night, and the next day they started for their 
homes under an escort to protect them outside 
of the limits, where they were likely to be 
molested by any of the troops. During the 
night one of the soldiers' exchanged an old 
broken-down horse for Dr. Lisle's animal, 
which was in much better condition, and it 
took a peremptory order from Colonel Blunt 
to induce him to deliver to the Doctor his horse 
when he was ready to start home. Before 
this party was out of sight the IVlathews prem- 
ises were set on fire and all destroyed. 

Mathews had his burying-ground on the 
high land at the intersection of Union street 
and First avenue. A number of graves are 

still visi])le. L'ntil within a few years there at the head nf une of these graves a com- 
mon sandstone with the following inscription 
cut thereon: "A. E. Mathes. Departed this 
life :\pril 10, A. D. 1857. Aged 11 years, 7 
months, 27 days." It will be noticed that in 
the name, as cut on this stone, there is' no xi.'. 
Several years ago the stone was broken down, 
and is now in the possession of the County 
Historical Society. Some of the writing is 
partially effaced. 

The early white settlers continued to use 
this hurving-ground for a vear or two after 
the settlement commenced in 1865. 

The following letter from the son of John 
Mathews is of interest, not only because of 
the information it contains, but also because 
coming from one of the first children born to 
a white parent on the present site of Oswego. 
I wrote to the uncle referred to in the letter, 
but could get no reply from him : 

"Pawhusk.v, I. T., Sept. 30. 1891. 

"Nelson Case, Esq., Osz^'cao, Kansas — 
De.\r Sir : I will try and give you all the in- 
formation I can in regard to the old place. It 
was called Little Town as far liack as I can 
recollect. I was born in the year 1S48. The 
stream west of town ,was' named by the Osagei : 
thev called it En-gru-scah-op-pa, which means 
some kind of animal; then the French called 
it La Bette. which means the same thing. I 
do not know how large the farm was. but from 
the best information I can gather there were 
100 acres on the place where the town now 
stands, and if my memorv ser\-es me right, 
there were 30 acres in the bottom. 

'•I do not know what white men settled 
near our place, liut I can find out from my sis'- 
ter. who lives 30 miles west from here. From 
the best information I can find out, the place 
was settled by a man by the name of Augustos 


Chautau, in the year 1843, who sold it to my 
father, wlio started a trading-post tliere in the 
year 1849. 

"I have an uncle by the name of Allen 
^Matthews, who lives in Neosho, Jasper county, 
IMissouri. who can give you more informa- 
tion than I can if you will write to him. 

"Hoping this will hel]) vou in your work, 
I remain, Yours, 

"W. S. Matthews." 


The early surveyors and Indian agents 
made a number of trips through this countrv, 
several of which we have official accounts of. 
In Mr. McCoy's history of Baptist Indian Mis- 
•sions, at page 35=;, he says: "On the 17th 
[of November, 1828] we reached the Osage 
Agency, gave notice of our arrival to the 
Osages. and desired them to meet us in council. 
On the 20th we pitched our tents' near the vil- 
lage of the chief called White Hair." And 
further along he says that on November 26, 
1828, their exploring party camped on the 
Arkansas at the mouth of the Verdigris River. 
Their journey in all probability took them 
through or near the present site of Oswego and 
Chetopa. After making some surveys in the 
Territory, the party;_ returned, and on Decem- 
ber 14th were again at White Hair's village. 
He again speaks cf crossing the Neosho into 
the principal village of the Osages on June 
30, on his way to Fort Gibson to establish cer- 
tain boundaries between Indian tribes. 


The date of settlement of the first wliite 
person in this county is unknown; whether it 
was John }ilathews or some of the parties in 

the neighborhood of Chetopa, I cannot say. 
The letters which I present herewith contain 
the most authentic information I have been 
able to gather on the subject, and I give them 
here as I have received them. 
"Pactolus, Benton Co., Ark., Dec. i, 1891. 

"Hon. Nelson Case, President Labette Co. 
Historical Society — Dear Sir : In response to 
vour request for some facts relative to early 
history, I will contribute the following. 

"I came to what is now Labette county on 
January 17, 1847, ^"^1 established a trading- 
post at the pijint where Chetopa now stands. 
I came here from Spring Place, Murray county, 
Georgia. The name of that place was spelled 
with an 'h' at the end — 'Chetopah,' and meant 
four houses; ''Che' in the Osage Indian lan- 
guage is house, and 'topah' is four. Chetopah 
had a town, and lived on ,the A'erdegree River, 
west or northwest of Chetopa town. He was 
onlv chief of his town. Each town had a chief 
and there was a principal chief over all. 

"I found five white, or partially white, fam- 
ilies there when I arrived. They were the 
widow Tianna Rogers and family, consisting 
of four sons and three daughters, all grown, 
li\-ing about one mile north of Chetopa ; Will- 
iam Blythe, whose wife was a white woman; 
Finchel JNIonroe, who had a white wife; Dan- 
iel Hopkins, a white man with a Clierokee 
wife; and a white man named Tucker, who had 
a Cherokee wife. These families lived near 
Chetopa, on the Neosho River, below where the 
town is at present. In 1848 I married Sarah 
Rogers, daughter of Tianna Rogers; we had 
born to us three sons and one daughter. Two 
of my sons, John and Albert, live in the Cher- 
okee Nation, ten miles from Chetopa. The 
other two children are dead. Tianna Rogers 
and all the family are dead. 

"John Mathews, a Kentuckian, who had 


married an Osage woman, li\'ed and had a trad- 
ing-post at the point where Oswego now stands. 
He had been there some years when I came; 
he had a farm of alx)Ut forty acres in cultiva- 
tion on the prairie. He had a good house 
standing on top of tlie bluff in the edge of the 
prairie; there was a spring near it, just north 
and east of the house. His houss was a framed 
house, with two stone chimneys, the framing 
timbers hewn out; it was boarded up on the 
outside with boards split or rived out of burr- 
oak trees, then sha\'erl and smoothed, and the 
house sided up and painted white. It looked 
quite nice compared to our log houses. His 
house was plastered on the inside, done in 
workmanlike style. All of the rest of the peo- 
ple lived in log cabins. I do not know how 
long he came before I did — probably several 
}-ears. He was a hea\-y trader, and wealthy. 
He had one negro woman \\-ith him who was a 
slave, till he was killed. He had fine blooded 
race-stock, with race track south and west of 
his house, and between his house and his cul- 
tivated land; he had fast horses. He would 
take trips to Missouri, Kentucky, Texas, and 
other States, racing, and was very successful. 
]\Iathews had a good many horses and cattle. 
"Cattle lived without being fed. and did 
better in the winter than in the summer, for in 
the summer the moscjuitoes and green-headed 
flies nearly ate them up. In the fall the pea- 
vine, and in the winter a winter grass and flag 
that grew around the lakes, made a good range 
for stock. \Vhere you now have good farms 
we then had large lakes on which immense 
numbers of geese, ducks, pelican, swan, brant 
and other fowl flourished. We never fed hogs, 
but the hickory and other nuts furnished food 
that kept them fat. There were plenty of wild 
turkey, fish, antelope, deer and other game ; 

also honey-bees, wolves, panthers and other 
wild animals to hunt for trafiic, and w'ild 
li rses could also be caught on the prairie. 

"There was a good deal of sickness, prin- 
cipally fever and ague, and no doctor within 
twenty-two miles; e\eryone had to be his own 
doctor. The winter of 1848-49, and also that 
of 1849-50, were unusually cold and severe. 
In the latter the snow was thirty inches deep, 
crusted on top, and stayed on the ground about 
six weeks. These two winters stock suffered 
a good deal, but other winters were not so bad, 
although I am of the opinion they were colder 
than they are since the country has settled up. 

"The settlers lived by hunting and trading 
with the Osages, and other tribes of wild In- 
dians that roamed over the country. The 
Cherokees claimed and extended their laws to 
the uKAith of the Labette Creek, until the south 
line of Kansas was established. Tlie Osagcs 
lived in towns, usually along the streams, with 
rne chief to a town. One town, called Little 
Town, was situated where Oswego now stands. 
Pah-Che-Ka, one of the chiefs of the Osages, 
lived at Little Town. White Hair was the 
principal chief of the Osages, and lived on the 
Neosho River six miles south of Osage 'Slis- 
sion, and down the river; this was the largest 
town in the Osage Nation at that time. 

"The Labette Creek took its name from a 
Frenchman of that name who then lived on 
the creek nearly west of where Oswego now 
stands. He had a full blooded Osage for a 
wife. It is said he once lived opposite the 
mouth of Labette Creek; if he did it was before 
Dr. Lisle or mvself saw that country; when I 
knew him he lived on the Labette, southwest 
of Oswego. He was a very common old 

"There are many things of nute that hap- 


pened in an early day. and in tlie first settling 
of that country, that I could tell, that I cannot 



Larkin McGhee." 

"Chetopa, Kansas, August i, 1892. 

"Hon. Nelson Case, President of the His- 
torical Society — Dear Judge : In compliance 
with your request for a statement in reference 
to matters connected with my first \'isit to 
Labette county, and settlement therein I here- 
with comply. 

"About 1850 I met a man by the name of 
\\^ilfred Cox, on a steamboat on the Ohio 
River, on his return from the West to his old 
home in Pennsylvania. He was a school teach- 
er, and had taught in various places, and finally 
reached Council Gro\-e. in this State ; thence 
he came down t) Osage Missiim with stock- 
men, and from there in one way and another 
got down to the Abrose McGhee place, near 
where Chetopa now stands. This was some 
time probably in 1847 or '48. He built him 
a canoe in which he floated down the river 
to \'an Buren ; after teaching school there and 
at other points in .Arkansas he started back 
home, and it was on this return trip that I saw 

"He gave me a full account -of the Neosho 
River and its scenery, describing the valley 
from the north of the Labette to the McGhee 
place ; he said it was the finest valley he had 
e\-er seen. I made notes of what he said, took 
a full description of the country, and made a 
sketcli of a map. On this information I de- 
cided t(i make a trip as soon as possible to this 
country. On ]\Iarch 20, 1857, in company with 
Abraham Ewers, George Ewers and Samuel 
Steel, I started from my home in Powhatan. 
Belmont cnunty. Ohin, for the Neosho val- 
ley, at the point last spoken of by Cox. 

I came on a steamboat to St. Louis, and 
from there to Osage City, Missouri, by 
rail; at that point we bought two yoke 
of oxen and drove through. \\'e came by 
tlie Ouapaw agency, where Major Dorn, 
the Indian agent, was located, with whom I 
had a conversation, and arranged to meet him 
a sh'ort time thereafter at. Osage Mission to 
act as his clerk in the payment to the Indians 
of the funds coming to them from the Gov- 

"We crossed the Neosho River at Rocky 
Ford on the State line on the evening of April 
!/• 1857; there we camped near the residence 
of James Childers, who was a white man, and 
who had married one of the Rogers girls; he 
lived on the west side of the river, in what 
is now a part of Cherokee county. The next 
day he came with us to the present site of Che- 
topa, \\here I decided to locate, and where we 
encamped. After arranging with those who 
came with me to proceed to getting out the 
logs with which to build, I started for Osage 
Mission to meet Major Dorn. It was now 
near the last of April; I clerked fc:r the Major 
during the disbursement to the Indians of their 
funds. During this time I attended a meeting 
of the council of the Osage chiefs, held at that 
place, a-t which they discussed the propriety 
of paying a bill of about $39 to a young man 
by the name of Peyett, who had acted as in- 
terpreter to Dr. Griffith, of Carthage, who had 
a }'ear before that time been sent by the Gov- 
ernment to) vaccinate the Osages. Several of 
the chiefs made speeches opposing the payment, 
saving, 'That if the Government intended to 
do them a kindness it ought to pay the inter- 
preter as well as the doctor' ; when they came 
to the close, White Hair requested Chetopa 
to speak for him, and he depicted in very strong- 
language the horrors of the small-pox, and 



what benefit they liatl recei\'ed from the young 
man, who had well earned his money, and 
that being a just debt they should pay it, and 
suggested that it be paid by the chiefs; the 
ranking chief, White Hair, to pay $10, and the 
other chiefs a less sum. 

■'.Vfter finishing my duties as clerk at this 
point I returned to my company at Chetopa, 
where I spent the summer with them in get- 
ting out and hewing logs for one house and 
lia\'ing enough cut for another. Some time in. 
July I started back to Ohio for my family, 
and returned with them, arri\-ing at Chetopa 
about the 20th of November of that year. 

■"I was met at Jefferson City, to which 
point the railroad was completed, by the boys 
from Chetopa with a team, who brought us 
back to Chetopa in that way. \\''hi!e I was 
gone the boys had raised a house, which was 
a double log house with 12 feet space between 
the two parts; it stO'.xl on the nortliAvest quar- 
ter of block 24, near where my residence now 
stands. The next season we put up a shop and 
office, which was made of shaved boards and 
covered with the same material ; the boards 
of the roof being two feet long, while those 
covering the sides were four feet ; I split and 
shaved them myself, out of pecan, in the win- 
ter of 1857-5S. This building was 16 by 40 
feet, one part of which was used for my olBce 
and drugs, and the other for a gun shop and 
blacksmith shop. It stood on the south side 
of what is now block 24, just west of the alley, 
about where my present office and shop stand. 
I alsj built a smoke-house and stable; inclosed 
about 25 acres with high rail fence, the rails 
being of walnut, and the fence was about ten 
rails high ; the lot extended to aljout what is 
now Third and Sixth streets, and from about 
Tvlaple on the south to Elm or Oak street on 
the north. I lived upon these premises until 

November 19, 1863, when I was driven fmm 
them by the United States troops, and just as 
I \A'as leaving saw them all in flames. I lost 
my library and other valuables in addition to 
the building that I ha\-e described. My wife, 
Phoebe, died on the last day of i860, and my 
daughter Penina had married J. E. Bryan, 
and was tli,en living at Council Grove. 

"I took my daughter Martha, and two sons, 
Albert and J<->hn, and started for Council Grove 
on the day last named, November 19, 1S63. 
The following persons also accompanied us 
on that occasion part of the way : Elizabeth 
and Christian McMurtry, two children of John 
}tIcMurtry, who had recently died in the army; 
Larkin McGhee and fanidy; Jane Jackson, 
whose husband was then in the army; and Mrs. 
Walker, whose husband had been driven into 
the Rebel army. In addition to my own prop- 
erty which was destroyed at this tmie, the fol- 
lowing persons also had all of their property 
burned: Sarah Rogers had a large hewed-log 
house and a large stable on what is now Mr. 
Crichton's place north of town; George Walker, 
a Cherokee, had a house, stable, crib, etc., west 
(jf the river, just south of where Mr. Edwards' 
mill now stands; John Mc]\Iurtry had a house 
near where the west end of the bridge across 
the Neosho now is, which was set on fire but 
would not burn, and was afterward torn down. 
Larkin McGhee had a house and stable and 
some grain just south of the branch south of 
Chetopa. on land now owned by Dr. Haider- 
man. There were perhaps 300 soldiers com- 
posed of Indians and whites under the com- 
mand of Captain Willits, Adjutant Able, and 
Lieutenant Joslyn, who did this burning, and 
who stated that they acted under instructions 
from their commanding officers. At this same 
time they arrested James Childers and de- 
manded of him his money; thev had been in- 


furmed that he had $6,000 buried. At first 
he denied having an\-, but after they had put 
a rope around his neck and stretched him up 
for awhile, and after letting him down, he ac- 
knowledged haviiig $2 000, and told them 
\vhere it was; they found this and wanted 
mure; he said that was every cent he had. 
He was stretched up and let down two or three 
times, and was finally killed, his thr;.iat cut, and 
left unburied, and was eaten by the hogs. I 
asked to be allowed to go back and bur\^ him, 
but was refuserl permission. I got this state- 
ment in refei'cncc tn his being killed from his 
sun. This entirely lin ike up the Chetopa set- 
tlement. I sta}'ed at Council Grove until Sep- 
temjjer, 1865, when I went back to Chetopa, 
and in Xm'ember of that year moved my fam- 
ily back. I lived with George Walker that 
winter, and Ijuilt on my farm acr.:ss the river, 
and ha\-e e\'er since had my home in or near 

"So(_:n after cxming to the county I trav- 
eled up the Xeosho, and came up:.u a clearing 
on the east side of the ri\-er nearly opposite 
the mouth (jf the Labette, where I was inf^^rmed 
a Frenchman by the name of Pierre Labette 
had lived for a number of years, but who some 
time previous had moved west. It was from 
him that the creek \vas named. 

"On the occasion of the Cnited States 
troops coming down the ri\-er fmm the cap- 
ture of Alathews, after he had been killed be- 
lt. w Chetopa, a detachment of the troops came 
to the Chetopa settlement and arrested all of 
us, and took us to the Mathews premises at 
Little Town, now Oswego, where we were 
held in custody over night, during which time 
we were tried by court-martial for assisting 
or encouraging parties to go into the Rebel 
army. Cnl. -nel Blunt presided at the trial, and 
after a full hearing all of us were discharged, 

but were kept, however, until the next day. 
\\'hile I was on my way back to Chetopa I 
could see the fiames from the Mathews build- 
ings, which had been fired by the troops before 
they took their departure. The evening before 
Mathews was killed he took supper at my 
house on his way down from his place to the 
Xation. A\'hen I returned from the ]\Iathews 
place after our release as aforesaxl, I started 
tc bur}' him, Init found that he had been al- 
ready buried. 

"Tn the fall of 1859 I got up a petition 
for a postofiice at my place, and had 41 signers 
between Little Town (now Oswego) and 
Timber Hill, in the Xation. I was instructed 
by the Department at \\'ashington to ha\-e all 
the signers the heads of families, either 
male or female. I had all but two ; they were 
away at the time, and did not get back until 
the petition had gone to \Vashingbon. Count- 
ing five to a family it would make 215; then 
counting thirty single men who hatl no fam- 
ilies, I think there- were about 250 when the 
war broke out, li\'ing on or near the river be- 
tween the points named. I was granted the 
postofiice — and it was to be called Chetopa, 
Dorn county, Kansas — some time in the sum- 
mer of i860, but as there was no mail route 
near here which could carry the mail we had 
to wait until 1861 for a new route to be es- 
tablished, which was done, and the contract 
for carr_\-ing the mail from Grand Falls, by 
Ouawpaw Mission, Baxter Springs and Chero- 
kee on Cherry creek, Osage Mission, thence 
by Chetopa to Grand Falls, was advertised to 
be let in June, wliich was not done on account 
of the war breaking out that summer, and the 
mail arrangements in the southwest aban- 


"George Lisle.'^ 




In 1827 or 1828 tlie east Ijoundary of the 
Osage reservation was surve}-ed by JNIajor A. 
L. Langham, and the northeast corner estab- 
hshed. In the summer of 1857 Colonel J. E. 
Johnston, with about 500 United States sol- 
diers forming an escort to the surveying party, 
surveyed and established the south line of the 
State. This force was stationed f:r some time 
on Russell Creek. There were with the expe- 
dition two astronomers, two geologists, two 
botanists, and a number of engineers and sur- 
veyors. There were 20 wagcns with which to 
haul provisions. After completing the survey 
to the southwest comer of the State, they came 
back, having their wagons leaded with salt 
which they had procured on the salt plains 
in the western part of the State. It was on 
this expedition that Colonel Johnston estab- 
lished the ford at Chetopa across the Neosho. 

In 1 87 1 the south line of Kansas was re- 
traced in compliance with the 21st article of 
the treaty with the Cherokee Indians, made 
July 19. 1866. This work was done under 
the supervision of Rev. D. P. ^Mitchell as chief 
engineer. In the fall of 1884, commencing in 
August, a party of Government employees came 
to Oswego and established their headquarters, 
making astronomical obser\-ations and a geo- 
logical survey of the ocuntry. 

The survey of the Osage Ceded lands into 
sections was completed in the spring of 1867. 


A number of articles have been written, 
and some of them by persons whose names 
would carry with them authority, on the origin 
of the name of the county. This name was 
first applied to the stream running through our 

ct)unty. and subsequently to the county itself 
when it was organized. Two or three letters 
will be found in this work which inciilentall/ 
refer to this matter. ^V. S. ^lathews. son of 
the old Indian trader, says the Osage name 
for the stream meant "some kind of animal; 
then the French called it La Bette, which means 
the same thing." This more fully agrees with 
the origin of the name as commonly given, 
but is not to my mind as reasonable as that 
given by Larkin jMcGhee and Dr. Lisle; both 
of whom say that the name was gi\'en to the 
stream on account of the first white settler at 
or near its mouth — Pierre Labette. This man 
lived at one time on the east of the Neosho 
opposite the mouth of the Labette, and subse- 
quently farther up the stream, and afterward 
went farther west. I think it reasonable to say 
that it was for him the stream was named; 
but whatever the origin of the name, it was 
given to the stream at a very early date. I 
have seen in a book originally belonging to the 
St. Louis office of the Commissioner of Indian 
Affairs and now in our State Historical So- 
ciety, a map of the Osage survey made and 
signed by Isaac McCoy, dated Westport, ]Mis- 
souri, September 13, 1836, on which the stream 
is quite correctly located, and the name thereon 
written "Le Bete Creek." At the first Repub- 
lican convention, held at Jacksonville in Sep- 
tember, 1866, where it was agreed that Neosho 
comity should be divided, it was on motion 
of G. W. Kmgsbury agreed that the south part 
of the county, when it should be organized, 
sliould be called "La Bete." J. S. Waters, 
who was present and took an active part in 
the work of the con\-ention, says : "That day 
was the first time I know of the word La Bete 
having been written; and it was that day writ- 
ten as I have written it above. There was some 
dispute as to whether there should be two or 


one f. ^^'hen the county was organized it was 
given tliis name as then agreed upon." 


The following acts of the Legislature have 
in some way tixed or affected the boundaries 
of our county. 

By section lo of chapter 30 of the laws 
of 1855, all the territory lying south of Allen 
county was constituted the county of Dorn. 
Its east line was 24 miles west of the Alissouri 
line, and its width was 24 miles (which was 
supposed to take it to the west line of range 

By "An act to more particularly define the 
boundaries of the several counties in Kansas 
Territory,'' approved February 22. 1857, the 
county of Dorn is made to commence at the 
corner of sections 14, 15, 22, 23, town 28, 
range 21; thence south to the Territory line, 
and west to same sections in range 17. 

By chapter 31 of the laws of i860, the east 
hue of Neosho county is declared to be the 
line between ranges 21 and 22, and the western 
line thef line between ranges 17 and 18; but as 

yet no bill had been passed creating Neosho 

By chapter 18 of the laws of 1861. approved 
June 3, 1 86 1, the name of the county was 
changed from Dorn to Neosho. 

By chapter 29, laws of 1867, approved Feb- 
ruary 7, 1867, Labette county was created, 
and made to embrace from the 6th standard 
parallel on the north to the south line of the. 
State, and from Cherokee Neutral lands on 
the east to the east boundary of the Osage 
reserve (^i the west. Subsequently the Legis- 
lature made provision for a vote being taken 
as to whether the line between Cherokee and 
Labette counties should be as above fixed, or 
whether a part of the way the river should 
form the boundary. This legislation gave rise 
to a protracted dispute as 'to what really was 
the boundary between the two counties, but 
finally all parties interested acquiesced in con- 
sidering the west line of the Cherokee Neutral 
Lands as the line between the two counties. 

By chapter 38 of the laws of 1870, the 
east line of Montgomery county was made to 
run south between sections 2 and 3, thus tak- 
ing a strip from Labette county and placing 
it in Montgomery. 



At tlie general election in November, 1866, 
although we were legally a part of Neosho 
county, by mutual understanding between the 
pei_)ple of what is now Neosho county and those 
residing in what is now Labette county, the 
latter took no part in the election of the county 
officers for Neosho county, but went through 
the form of holding an election of county offi- 
cers for Labette county, with the under- 
standing on their part that an act of the Legis- 
lature would be secured, legalizing the elec- 
tion and organizing the county with the offi- 
cers thus elected, recognized by the Legisla- 
ture as the legal county officers ; or in the event 
such an act could not be secured, then that 
the officers thus elected would be appointed 
to the positions to which they were thus re- 
spectively elected. It seems to have been agreed 
that each locality might vote at this election 
and make their returns, although the place at 
which the votes were cast had not been estab- 
lished as an election precinct. Votes were re- 
ceived at Montana, Oswego, Chetopa, and pos- 
sibly at Neola. I have found no one among the 
old settlers who remembers who it was that 
composed the board of canvassers at this elec- 
tion, but probably it was made up of parties 
from two or three of the different localities, 
mutually agreed upon by all; I judge from all 
I can learn that the canvass took place, and 

the result w^as declared at Oswego. A full 
ticket was run by both the Democratic and 
Republican parties. The Republican ticket was 
elected by a large majority; the officers elected 
at that time were as follows : Representative 
in the Legislature, Chas. H. Bent; county com- 
missioners, S. W. Collins, C. H. Talbot and 
Bergen Van Ness; county clerk, A. T. Dicker- 
man; sheriff, Benjamin A. Rice; clerk district 
court, Elza Craft;; register of deeds, George 
Bent ; county assessor, Jabez Zink ; probate 
judge, David C. Lowe; county treasurer, C. C. 
Clover: C(junty attorney, J. S. ^^'aters; super- 
intendent i.if pul:)lic instruction, J. F. Newlon; 
coroner, G. W. Kingsbury. No one that I have 
found Cjuestions the correctness of the above 
list, except as to county attorney and probate 
judge. According to the remembrance of 
some of the old settlers there was no one elect- 
ed cijunt}' attorney, as at the time there was 
n J une in the county who had been admitted 
to the bar ; probably no one ran for county at- 
torney at this election. And in respect to pro- 
bate judge, the remembrance of some is that 
David Stanfield, instead of David C. Lowe, 
was the party elected. Of course the election 
had no ^■alidity, and all understood that it 
only amounted to an expression of public opin- 
ion as to persons whom the people would like 
to have for their first officers. 


On the certificate of election furnished him, 
Mr. Bent went to the Legislature in January, 
1867, and was admitted to his seat soon after 
the organization of the House. Little or no 
opposition was made to the bill introduced by 
him organizing Labette county, and on Feb- 
ruary 7, 1867, it was approved by the Gov- 
ernor and became a law. On March 7, 1867, 
N. P. Elsbree, Bergen Van Ness and Nelson 
F. Carr each made affidavit before C. H. Tal- 
bot, justice of the peace, to the fact of the 
county having a population of more than 600 
inhabitants. Mr. Bent took these affidavits, to- 
gether with a statement of the fact of the fall 
election, to Governor Crawford on March loth, 
and secured from him on that day a proclama- 
tion designating Oswego as the temporary 
county seat, and the appointment by him of 
S. W. Collins, C. H. Talbot and Bergen Van 
Ness as county commissioners, and A. T. Dick- 
erman as county clerk, these being the parties 
who had been respectively elected to those posi- 
tions in November preceding. ]Mr. Bent at 
once came home, bringing with him the proc- 
lamation and the commission of the parties 
thus appointed. 

We have no record of any of the official 
acts of the officers thus appointed; whatever 
record was kept of their doings has been either 
entirely lost or is so misplaced that it cannot 
be found. I have been unable to find a single 
word of official record pretending to give the 
transactions of any officers prior to June 5, 
1867. The nearest I can come to making the 
statement of the organiation of our county au- 
thentic is by giving the following letter from 
the then county clerk : 

"Oswego, Kansas, August 5, 1892. 
"Judge Nelson Case — Dear Sir: In ref- 
erence to the organization of the county, and 

the record of the same of which you ask, I will 
give a brief account. \Mien ^Ir. Bent came 
back from Topeka in ^March, 1867, he brought 
with him the commissions of the officers who 
had been appointed to organize the county. 
Very soon thereafter Mr. Van Ness came docvn 
to Oswego and saw Mr. Talbot, and the two 
talked over what they thought should be done. 
It was agreed that Mr. Talbot should see Air. 
Collins, the other commissioner, and have an 
election called. The three commissioners did 
not meet together, and in fact Air. ^'an Ness 
never really C[ualified. The two other com- 
missioners agreed on fixing voting precincts 
and calling an election. The four river town- 
ships were set off as they now are; the south 
one was then called Chetopa. The next two 
tiers of congressional townships were divided 
into three municipal townships, and named 
North, Labette and Hackberry. The balance 
of the county to the west was divided into two 
parts, and named Timber Hill and Pumpkin 
Creek. No election was held that spring in 
either of thtse two west precincts. The elec- 
tion was called for some time in April; I do 
not remember the exact date. I posted the 
notices of this election. The commissioners 
then met and canvassed the vote and directed 
me to issue certificates of election to the parties 
who were declared to be elected. 

"I kept a record of the proceedings on 
foolscap paper, which I turned ever to old 
father Clover, who acted as my deputy after 
the county was organized. The commissioners 
first held their meetings in a hewed-log house 
standing on block 24, beknging to C. H. 
Talbot. Respectfully, 


Persons who search for information re- 
specting the organization of our county, as I 



have done, will find a number of printed arti- 
cles, some in newspapers and some in books, 
and among the latter the standard histories of 
our State, stating that the organization took 
place in jMay, 1867, the date they usually fix 
being the third Tuesday in May, and I have 
been unable to find anything giving a prior 
date. Notwithstanding this, I fix on April 
2.2, 1867, as the time when our first county 
election was held, and in support of the time 
thus selected I otier the following: In the 
first place, to any one who has had any ex- 
perience in Ivansas politics it will not be worth 
while to argue that a set of men who had 
been appointed to offices on the loth of March 
would wait a whole month or more before 
qualifying and entering upon the discharge of 
their duties, unless they were prevented from 
so doing by some uncontrollable force or ne- 
cessity. I have never heard that these commis- 
sioners were in any way prevented from the 
exercise of their official duties, and from this 
fact I conclude that it was not many days 
after Mr. Bent"s return from Topeka until they 
had cpialified and taken some steps to make 
their pfficial acts known. But there are refer- 
ences in the official records subsequently made 
which confirm this theory. In the record of the 
commissioners' proceedings on July i. 1867, 
is the following: 

"It is hereby ordered that the election for 
county-seat expenses be postponed until the 
cjuestion of county seat is decided. It is or- 
dered that the election held the 22d day of 
April for coun.ty and township officers, the 
last amounting to $80.40." 

It will be seen that the clerk who made this 
record has not finished the sentence; but from 
the statement the inevitable inference is that 
an election had been held on the 22A of April. 

And again on November 19, 1867, the follow- 
ing appears in the commissioners" record : 

"Ordered, that Austin Dickerman be al- 
lowed the sum of thirteen dollars and 25 cents 
for service as county clerk in posting notices 
of the April election, 1867." 

These are the only official references that 
I have found of the transactions of any of the 
county officers, in any way fixing the time 
when our first county election was held. How- 
e\-er, the records show that as early as the 
middle of May, John N. ^Vatson was exercis- 
ing the functions of justice of the peace in 
Richland township; I find no one who claims 
that he was appointed, nor do I find anything 
in the office of the Secretary of State indicating 
that he was; he was evidently elected at the 
first election, which must have been held pre- 
vious to the last-mentioued date. From all 
these considerations, I conclude the election 
took place (jn April 22d; thus gi\'ing ample 
time for the meeting of the commissioners 
after the return of Mr. Bent from Topeka, 
and thirty days' notice of the time and place 
of the election. Our record being lost, pre- 
suming one to have been kept, we have no 
official declaration of the result of this election, 
but we find certain persons exercising official 
functions, and from reference to them in offi- 
cial records subsequently made, we can arrive 
at a very nearly, if not an absolutely, correct 
conclusion as to who were elected; and the 
officers at that time elected were the follow- 
ing : Countv commissioners, Nathan Ames, 
W'm. Shay and David C. Lowe; county clerk, 
A. T. Dickerman; county assessor, Francis 
\\'all ; clerk district court, R. S. Cornish; 
register of deeds, Elza Craft ; treasurer, C. C. 
Clover; sherifY, Benjamin A. Rice: superin- 
tendent of public instruction. John F. Newlon; 


surveyor. Z. Harris; coroner, George W. 
Kingsbury. I find nothing indicating tliat 
any one was elected county attorney, and am 
somewhat in doubt as to who was elected pro- 
bate judge, for the reason the record is silent 
on that subject; and among the old settlers I 
find no one who seems to be positive as to who 
was elected, and some of them have in the!r 
memory, somewhat indistinctly. h;;\ve\'er, dif- 
ferent persons. I will here give what I find 
in the record in reference to the vacancy in 
the corps of officers : Two of the commission- 
ers elected, viz., D. C. Lowe and Nathan Ames, 
met at Oswego on June 5th; this seems to 
have been the first meeting, and on this date 
we have our first official record, and from^ it 
it appears that W'm. Shay failed to qualify as 
commissioner, whereupon the office was de- 
clared vacant, and John G. Rice was appointed 
to fill the vacancy; thereupon, D. C. Lowe 
was elected chairman of the board. The next 
order made declared the office of assessor va- 
cant, because of the removal from the county 
of the party elected. lea\'ing him unnamed, 
however, and A. W. Jones was then appointed 
assessor to fill tlie vacancy. The next order 
is as follows : 

"it is hereby ordered, that the office of 
probate judge be declared vacant on his not 
coming forward and qualifyi4ig and giving 
bond according to law. It is therefore ordered 
that Bergen Van Ness be appointed probate 
judge until the next general election in No- 
vember, or his successor is qualified."' 

Some of the old settlers think that Van 
Ness was the party elected, but I think the 
force of this record is strongly against them. 
It seems that Mr. Van Ness did not at once 
qualify upon being appointed as aforesaid, for 
in the record of the commissioners' proceed- 
ings of July 3d is the following: 

"Ordered, that Bergen Van Ness be ap- 
pointed probate judge of Labette count}-, Kan- 
sas, to fill a vacancy of the probate judge 
owing to his not coming forward and filing 
his bond in the time required by law." 

This language indicates that the person 
now appointed is the one who had failed to 
qualify, but evidently this refers to his failure 
to qualify under his previous appointment, 
and not his election. I have nothing more 
definite as to who was elected probate judge 
in April. 

At the first meeting- of the board, the coun- 
ty clerk was directed to order blank books 
and stationery from Luce & Griggs, Daven- 
port, Iowa, "to be sent as per agreement," 
and I find that the first orders on the county 
treasury were drawn in their favor, dated 
September 3, 1867, for the supplies thus or- 
dered; order No. i was for $199; orders Nos. 
2 and 3 for $24 each. At the same time 
that this order was made to this Davenport 
firm, the clerk was directed to make an order 
for other books and blanks for the assessor, 
treasurer and commissioners, which order 
seems to have been sent to Samuel Dodsworth, 
of Leavenworth. The following appears in 
the record of the commissioners for January 
14, 1868: 

"It is hereby ordered that the county clerk 
make out the proper statement of the proceed- 
ings of this for the general meeting commenc- 
ing the first Alonday in January, 1868, ac- 
cording to law, and forward the same for 
publication to the Humboldt Union." 

This is the first irder I find designating 
any official paper or in any way providing 
for the official publication of the proceedings 
of the county officers. It was not long after 
this order was made until the Neosho Valley 
Eagle was established, and I find that the pub- 


lisher of that paper was allowed bills for print- 
ing. The first paper to be started in the county 
was the OswegO' Register, which appeared in 
June of this year, and must have at once been 
gi\-en at least a part of the count}- printing, 
for, on July 8th, E. R. Trask, the publisher, 
is allowed an account of $4 for county printing. 


The Osage Ceded Lands were first lirought 
into market by virtue of the joint resolut'on 
of April 10, 1869. Owing to the rukng of the 
Secretary of the Interior on the claims matle 
by the railroad companies, only a part of the 
lands was disposed of under this law. After 
the Supreme Court of the L'nited States de- 
clared the railroad companies"- claims \'oid 
Congress passed amither act, which was ap- 
proved August II, 1876, under which the re- 
mainder of the Osage Ceded Lands was pur- 
chased. The Cherokee strip, on the south 
side of the county, was sold to the settlers 
under the act of Congress appro\-ed INIav 
II, 1872. 


The experience of those who first came to 
this county is probably not very dissimilar to 
that which has attended early settlers in nearly 
'e\ery county. Some of them had sufficient 
means to make themselves as comfortable as 
they well could be, with the distance they were 
from market, though many of them were in 
very plain circumstances, and under \'ery much 
more favorable conditions would have found 
it hard to make their families comfortable. As 
it was, there was necessarily a great amount 
cf suffering. Pro\-isions had to be hauled 
from so great a distance that the price con- 

tinued very high all the time for several years. 
Flour was frequently $15 a hundred, corn $3 
a bushel, meal $6 a hundred, bacon 25 cents 
a pound, and other things in the line of living 
in proportion. Teams which were used for 
hauling provisions were poorly fed and con- 
sequently generally poor, and in going to Mis- 
souri f. r a load of provisions but a small load 
could be hauled. Frequently the streams were 
up so that for days they could not be crossed, 
which would necessitate the consumption of 
a large part of what had been procured before 
they reached their homes. Sometimes boats 
loaded with \'egetables would be shipped down 
the Neosho from points up the streajn where 
they were raised. In the fall of 1866 there 
was much sickness among the settlers, so much 
that there were scarcely enough well ones to 
wait on the sick. .Ml of these things and many 
more contributed to make tiie lot of the early 
settler a hard one. In 1867 a sufficient amount 
i_f crops was raised to make quite a help in 
providing the new country with the necessaries 
of life, but it was not until 1868 that anything 
like a sufficient amount was raised to supply 
the demands, and even then \-ery much had to 
be shipped in. 


In September, 1866, A. \\'. Richardson 
died, and in December following, his son John 
Richardson was appointed administrator of his 
estate by the Probate Court of Neosho county. 
In February, 1867, he held a public sile of the 
eiTects of the estate. Francis \\'all was auc- 
tioneer. The prsiperty was sold on time, and 
brought a good price, and every dollar of the 
purchase price was collected by the administra- 
tor. This was the first estate administered upon 
within the present limits of the county. 




In this, as in very many other matters, 
there are several who claim the honor of being 
first; but the first marriage of which I have 
any information is that of J. E. Bryan and 
Penina Lisle, the ceremony of which was per- 
formed at Chetopa, September 4, i860, by Rev. 
Mr. Rader. Of course there is no record of 
this, there being at the time no civil organiza- 
tion in the county, and no license procured. 
There were several parties married at quite an 
early date after the commencment of the set- 
tlement of the county, in 1865. It is pos- 
sible that some marriage ceremony may have 
been performed prior to that of which I shall 
now speak; but I am cjuite sure that this is the 
first marriage in the county of which there is 
any official record. The marriage record in 
the Probate Court of Xeosho county has the 
following : 

"State of Kansas, County of Neosho. 


"This is to certify that Mr. Wm. \\'ilcox 
and Miss Sarah Jane Marlow were married 
by me on the 5th day of August, 1866. 

"George Bennett, J. P. 
"Recorded October 2, 1866. 
"J. L. Fletcher, Clerk." 


The subject of county-seat in this county 
commences with the following proclamation by 
the Governor: 

"State of Kansas, Executiv^e Office, 
"Topeka, March 10, 1867. 
"Whereas, in due form of law it has been 

made to appear that the county of Labette, 
State of Kansas, contains the required number 
of inhabitants to entitle the people of said coun- 
ty to a county organization : 

"Now, therefore, I, Samuel J. Crawford, 
Governor of Kansas, by virtue of authority 
in me vested by law, and having commissioned 
special county officers, do hereby locate the 
county seat of Labette county, State of Kan- 
sas, at the town of Oswego in said county. 

"In testimony whereof, I have hereunto 
subscribed my hand, and caused to be affixed 
the official seal of State. 

" Done at Topeka, this loth day of March, 
A. D., 1867. 

"[Seal.] S. J. Crawford." 

At the first county election, held on April 
22, 1867, in addition to the choice of county 
officers the electors voted upon the location of 
the county-seat, with the following result : 
Oswego received 156 votes. ^lontana 140 
votes, and Neola 84 votes. On October 4, 
1867, the commissioners "Ordered that an 
election on the permanent location of the coun- 
ty-seat of Labette county, Kansas, be held on 
the 5th day of November, A. D. 1867." The 
canvass of this vote shows that Oswego re- 
ceived 158 votes, Neola 144 votes, and Mon- 
tana 95 votes. On November 21, 1867, on a 
petition, containing 251 names, for a county- 
seat election, it was ordered that such election 
be held on the 30th day of December, 1867. 
The vote was canvassed January 2, 1868, with 
the following result : Oswego, 204 votes ; Ne- 
ola, 122 votes; Montana, 109 votes; and the 
Geographical Center, 6 votes. The poll-books 
for Hackberry township and luka precinct in 
Neosho township were thrown out at this elec- 
tion, for incompleteness of return. Another 
election was held, on January 7, 1868, which 
was canvassed on January 10, 1868, and the 



result declared to be as follows: Oswego, 211 
votes; Neola, 122 votes; whereupon it was de- 
clared that "Oswego having received a ma- 
jority of all the votes cast at said election for 
county-seat, it is hereby declared to be the 
county-seat of Labette, in the State of Kansas." 

The next county-seat move seems to have 
been on April 12, 1869, when J. S. Waters 
presented a petition for a county-seat election, 
the consideration of which was had on the 13th 
and again on the 14th of the same month, 
on which last day it was rejected. 

On January 5, 1871, D. G. Brown pre- 
sented a petition, purporting to be signed by 
1,494 citizens, asking for an election on the 
permanent location of the county-seat of La- 
bette county. David Kelso appeared before 
the board and asked that it defer action on the 
petition for ten days or two weeks, to give 
time for an examination of said petition and 
to make a showing that it was not such a one 
as was recjuired by law in order that an 
election may be ordered. The board gave two 
hours for making such a showing; whereupon 
several affidavits were filed, but after all ob- 
jections the board made its order that an elec- 
tion be held on February 15, 1871, for per- 
manent location of the county-seat. 

On February 18, 1871. the vote was can- 
vassed, and the result declared to be as follows : 
Whole number of votes cast, 3.715; of which 
Chetopa received 877, Oswego 1,011, Labette 
1,588, Geographical Center 237, Center i, 
Montana i. The poll-books from Parsons pre- 
cinct were not received, for the reason that no 
such voting precinct had then been established. 
The votes thus rejected were 51 for Oswego, 3 
for Labette, and 2 for Geographical Center. 

It was then ordered that a second election 
be held, on February 28th. to determine as 
between Oswego and Labette which slujuld be 

the county seat. In the meantime the friends of 
Cheto]3a commenced suit against the commis- 
sioners and obtained an injunction restraining 
them from canvassing the returns cast at the 
election on February 28th. On IMarch 4th the 
commissioners met and heard extended argu- 
ments in favor of and against their proceed- 
ing with a canvass of the votes. As a record 
of a deliberative body, the report of the action 
of the board at this time, as found in its jour- 
nal, is somewhat amusing. They finally deter- 
mined "that they had no' right under the in- 
junction to can\-ass the vote, and that they 
would not canvass or proclaim any result, but 
would repair to the county clerk's office and 
there examine the packages purporting to con- 
tain returns, and filed in said office, and ascer- 
tain if said packages so filed contained poll- 
books in fact of the election held on February 
28th, 1871, for the location of the county- 

Al^out the time the commissioners had 
completed the inspection of the packages and 
ascertained the result of the votes, the deputy 
sheriff came into the room with an order iov 
their arrest on contempt of court. On hear- 
ing had before the district judge they were 
discharged as not having intended any con- 
tempt by the unofficial canvass, and ascertaining 
the result of the vote cast on the 28th of Feb- 
ruary. Although not officially announced, the 
result of that vote as shown by the returns, 
and as given out and published at the tim^, 
was found to be as follows: Total vote 2,509, 
Labette i 308, Oswego 1,201. 

At the election held February 15th, the vote 
of Liberty township, which included the town 
of Labette, was 952, all but three of which 
were cast for Labette, while at the election held 
but thirteen days later the vote of this town- 
ship had dwindled down to 2t7-- At the firgt 



election the vote of Oswego township and city 
was 672, and at tlie second election it was 
687. At the first election Iiika precinct cast 
305 votes, all for Lahette; while at the second 
election she was content with a poll of 58 votes, 
all of which were for Laljette. 

During this 1871 contest over the county- 
seat, parties attempted to make capital for 
themselves, or for some other cause, on the 
strength of their promise as to what would be 
done for or against certain localities in the 
county-seat vote. D. C. Hutchinson and W. 
M. Rogers, claiming to represent the settlers' 
association, went to Chetopa and got $500 
donated to the settlers' organization, with the 
promise, as was generally understood, that 
the settlers would in turn give Chetopa their 
support for the county-seat; and soon there- 
after the North township council tendered a 
vote of thanks to Chetopa for her generous 
contribution. It is not improbable that like 
attempts were made to secure funds from other 
points on similar promises. 

During this canvass also other attempts 
were made to influence the voting, which, if 
intended in good faith, were perhaps less ob- 
jectionable. To induce the location of the 
county-seat at Labette, the town company of- 
fered to pay the expenses of the election, and 
set aside a block of ground to be donated to the 
county on which to erect county buildings. 
In January, 1868, a somewhat similar propo- 
sition had been made by Oswego, she propos- 
ing to pay expenses of election and to furnish 
a court-house building free for two years if 
she were chosen county-seat. A public meet- 
ing was held at Mound Valley, at which it 
was voted to offer to pay $5,000 into the county 
treasury provided the county-seat were located 
at that point and remained there for five years, 
and in addition to donate a block of ground 

400 feet square and the use of a town ball 
until the county could do better; and further 
offered to donate grounds for an agricultural 

It would be hard to give even a faint idea 
of the bitterness of feeling engendered, and of 
the amount of corruption practiced at this time. 
Persons who were considered good and honest 
citizens seemed to have no scruples in encour- 
aging and assisting illegal and fraudulent vot- 
ing, in tampering with ballot-boxes, and fix- 
ing up returns to suit the emergency, so as to 
give the place for which they were working a 

On July 9, 1874, a petition containing 
2,193 names was presented to the board of 
county commissicners, asking that an order be 
made for an election for the purpose of voting 
on the relocation of the ccunty-seat. A large 
number of business men and attorneys from 
Parsons appeared and argued in favor of grant- 
ing the petition, and a like representation from 
Oswego appeared and argued against the peti- 
tion. The matter was under consideration a 
large part of the time from the 9th to the 17th 
of July, during which time nearly every phase 
of the law relative to county-seat elections was 
discussed, and many important questions were 
passed upon by the board. Among these may 
be mentioned : Who are competent petitioners ; 
from what rolls the number of electors in the 
county are to be determined; the right of a 
party who has signed a petition to withdraw 
his name therefrom; the right to add names 
after the petition has been presented. The 
board finallv determined that the number of 
electors in the county as shown by the tax- 
rolls was 3,564. From the 2,193 names on 
the petition, 174 were stricken off for various 
reasons; some because appearing there twice, 
some because put there by other parties with- 



out authcrity, some because tliey were not le- 
gal electors, and some because they requested 
their names to he stricken therefrom. iVfter 
these names were stricken from the petition, 
there were left thereon 2,019. There not be- 
ing three-fifths of the total number of electors, 
the board on July 17th unanimously \-oted not 
to order an election. 

On January 14, 1S80, the commissioners 
in\'ited C.^hetiipa, Oswego and Parsons cities 
and ;\Iount Pleasant and INIcund Valley town- 
ships to submit propositions as to what they 
would do toward furnishing a building, of a 
kind designated in the order, for court-house 
and offices, and in case of removal of county- 
seat, a jail, and the pajmient of the costs of 
removal ; such propositions to be submitted to 
the electors of the county at a special election 
to Ije called for that purpose. 

On January 15, 1880, A. M. Fellows pre- 
sented to the board a petition said to contain 
about 2,yoo names, asking an election to be 
called for relocating the county-seat. Consid- 
eration of this was had on the following day, 
and being found insufficient, was denied, and 
lea\'e given to withdraw the same. On Janu- 
ary 2/, 1880, Angell Matthewfon presented a 
petition for an election to relocate the ccunty- 
seat, and attorneys for petiticners objected to 
anyone being heard to argue against granting 
the petition, on the ground that it was an c.v 
parte matter in which no one but the petitioners 
were known to the board. The objection was 
overruled, and the board decided to hear par- 
ties for and against the petition. After consid- 
eration of the petition from day to day up to 
February 7, 1 880, the board on that day found 
that the petition contained 2,495 names, only 
1,168 of which were the names of legal elec- 
tors, and that as the number of names on the 

assessment-rolls was 3.374. it 
a petition containing the names 

wiuUd require 
of 2.024 elec- 
tors to entitle them to an order for a county- 
seat election. It was thereupcn ordered that 
the prayer of the petitioners be denied. 

This controversy over the application for 
an election in 1880 was somewhat mixed up 
with the matter of building a new court-house. 
In both matters the representatives of Parsons 
attempted to institute legal proceedings in the 
name of the State. An injunction was applied 
for to restrain the building of the court-house, 
and a mandamus was asked to compel the com- 
missioners to count parties as petitioners for 
an election although their names did not ap- 
pear on the assessment-rolls. Application was 
made to the Attorney General to allow the 
suits to be conducted in the name of the State. 
The request was granted on CLudition of cer- 
tain preliminary steps being first taken. This 
course was not taken, and the cases in the 
name of the State were dismissed. A manda- 
mus proceeding by \V. G. Adkins, one of the 
petitioners, was instituted to compel the board 
to count him, and others similarly situated, as 
legal petitioners, but the Supreme Court held 
that he was not authorized to maintain the 

The last public effort that \A-as made to 
obtain a county-seat election was in 1889. 
During a large part of that summer petitions 
were in circulation in nearly every neighbor- 
hood in the county, asking that an election be 
called. One of the peculiar features of this 
effort was the form of petiti; n which was 
adopted. It was really a contract whereby 
each party who signed it agreed with every 
other one who signed it, not to ask to have his 
name stricken off. This petition, however, has 
ne\'er yet been presented to the board. 




During the first two years the county offi- 
cers held their offices in such temporary cjuar- 
ters as could be secured, and the court was 
first held in the second story of the Buntain 
building, then standing on the southwest cor- 
ner of block 25, and now standing on the 
northwest corner of block 1 1 ; and thereafter 
it was held in the second story of the Fleming 
building, on lot 17 in block 31, now occupied 
by O. E. Woods as a lumber-yard office. 

In the summer and fall of 1868 the citi- 
zens of Oswego by private contribut'on erect- 
ed a one-story frame building 24 by 36 feet, 
12 feet high, on lot 20 in block 39, in which 
to huld church, school and public lectures. This 
building was ready for occupancy in the fall 
of 1868, and in it was taught the public school 
that winter. The OsAvego Town Company, 
having repaid the money to those who had con- 
tributed for the erection of this building, took 
it off their hands, and on February 15, 1869, 
in ciinsideration of $1 to them paid by the 
county commissioners, conveyed said lots with 
said building thereon to the county commis- 
sioners for the benefit of Labette county, and 
on the same day the town company entered into 
a contract with the county commissioners for 
the erection of a stone building 12 feet square 
and 12 feet high, and to cost not less than 
$1,000, and to donate the same to the county 
for a jail ; the county commissioners agreeing 
to accept and use the same for that purpose. 
Tiiereupon the town company employed J. H. 
Sawin to erect such a building, and it was 
built on tlie west end of lot i, block 18, and 
was ready for occupancy in July of that year. 
The building above described, donated to the 
county by the town company, was at first used 
only for a court-house, the county offices still 

remaining scattered over town in temporary 
quarters rented for that purp(jse. The first 
term of court held in this building was in Oc- 
tober, 1869. 

On January 8. 1870, the commissioners, 
having taken the opinion of the county attor- 
ney, and being advised by him that they were 
fully authorized so to do, decided to put up an 
addition to the court-house, to be used for 
offices by the county officers. They thereupon 
entered into a contract with Rev. Joseph A. 
Cox for the erection of such an addition, to be 
about 24 by 30 feet, for the sum of $900; 
and they appointed Elisha Hammer agent of 
the county to superintend the erection of such 
an addition, and upon its completion to accept 
it and deliver to the contraclor the county or- 
ders in payment for the same. On the com- 
pletion of this addition, it was divided into four 
offices, in which most of the county officers 
were able to find quarters. Soon thereafter, 
however, the clerk of the district court and 
sheriff removed their offices to the main room 
used for a court-house. 

The building referred to, erected for a 
county jail, for the number of prisoners who 
frequently had to be placed therein, was found 
to be unfit for the purpose, and occasionally, 
before the new jail was built, prisoners had 
to be taken to- some neighboring county, usu- 
ally Bourbon, for safe-keeping. No other 
building was provided by the county until 
1879. In April,, 1879, the commissioners con- 
tracted with Samuel Fellows for the erection 
of a large stone building in the rear of the 
court-house, for which they agreed to pay him 
$698.56. The building was completed in iMay, 
and in it the commissioners placed three iron 
cells, for which they paid $750 and freight. 
While this building was quite an im.provement 
on the first, it was still insufficient both in size 


and construction for a county jail. Over and 
over again did the judge of the district court 
and the grand jury, as well as the public press, 
declare this building to be a totally unfit place 
in which to confine prisoners. Four and some- 
times six prisoners woiild be confined in one 
of these small cells. Dampness and lack of 
ventilation and, almost of necessity, with such 
a number as it contained, a large degree of 
filthiness, characterized this building, and made 
its maintenance a blot on our good name. 
However, it was not until 1893 that better 
accommodations were provided. In 1890 the 
city of Oswego proposed to the county to erect 
on the court-house premises a substantial two- 
story brick building, the use of which the coun- 
ty was to have free so long as she desired to 
occupy it as a county jail, and during the 
summer such building was erected. In 1891 
the old cells and three additional new iron ones, 
for which the county paid $1,800, were placed 
in this building. 

On July 10, 1880, the conmi'.ssirvners con- 
veyed the first stone building used as a jail to 
the city of Oswego for use as, a calaboose. 

On December 4, 1879, H. C. Hall and C. 
O. Perkins offered to rent from the county the 
court-house site for ninety-nine years, and to 
erect thereon a brick or stone building of suffi- 
cient size and accommodation for county pur- 
poses, which they would lease to the county for 
a term of years at a reasonable rent. Whereupon 
the board accepted their proposit on, and agreed 
if they would erect the building described, 
which was substantially the one subsequently 
constructed, they would rent it for ten years, 
and pay therefor as rental $900 for the first 
year and $600 per annum thereafter. On Jan- 
uary 14, 1880, the board rescinded its action 
taken on December 4, 1879, and revoked the 
contract; but on January 17th, on the execut- 

ing of a bond by certain citizens, which was 
approved by the board, conditioned that they 
would pay the rent on the proposed building 
to be erected by Messrs. Hall and Perkins, the 
board ratified and confirmed its order made on 
December 4, 1879; whereupon the proposed 
building was erected, and on May 23, 1880, 
being fully completed, was dedicated with ap- 
propriate ceremonies. In 1883 the county com- 
missioners caused brick vaults to be construct- 
ed for the offices of the register of deeds and 
the clerk of the district court. 

The shade trees which add so much to the 
appearance of the property were set out in 1881. 


The record of the proceedings nf the cdui- 
missioners at their first meeting, on June 5, 
1867, contains this order: 

"It is further ordered, that the county offi- 
cers shall hold their offices at heme until a 
place is provided by said board of commis- 

However, temporary offices were soon 
thereafter provided in Oswego for most of the 
officers. On January 14, 1868, I find among 
the proceedings of the board the following 
order : 

"County clerk is hereby ordered to give no- 
tice to the various county officers of this county 
when and where county offices have been pro- 
vided, when the same shall have been so pro- 

On November u, 1870, is the following 
order : 

"County offices having been provided with 
furniture, ordered, that county officers keep 
office in court-house from November 20, 

The first order which I find referring to 


the furniture for county offices is on January 
14, 1868, when the commissioners ado]^ted the 

"Wliereas, the county offices of this count}' 
are destitute of furniture : and wliereas, such 
furniture is ahsolutely necessary for the tran- 
saction of business in said offices, therefore, it 
is hereby ordered that the county clerk be and is 
hereby authorized to procure for said offices 
the fohowing articles of furniture : Twelve 
office chairs, two tables 3 by 6 feet, one coal 
stove of lar.-^re size, one book case ; said furni- 
ture to be purchased or procured on the most 
advantageous terms' to the county, and paid 
for out of the county treasury with any money 
not otherwise appropriated." 

On July 7, 1868, the commissioners allowed 
bill to Hanford & Pierson in the sum of $19 
for one half-dozen office chairs. This seems to 
have been the first bill of furniture bought by 
the count}'. On the same day the commission- 
ers made the following order: 

"It appearing to the board that it is neces- 
sary, in order to preserve the books, records 
and papers belonging to the county, that they 
should be placed in a safe, and there being no 
safe in the possession of the county authori- 
ties, therefore, be it or<lered by the board, that 
the county clerk enter into contract with R. 
W. Wright or some other person for the use 
of a safe for one year upon the following 
terms : The county will pay five per centum 
on the cost of the safe, and the county to have 
the use of one-half of the safe, with the privi- 
lege of going to the safe at pleasure. The safe 
to stand in R. W. \\'right's business house, 
if rented of him; if rented of any other per- 
son it is to be placed in county rooms or some 
building convenient thereto." 

On January 8, i86g, it is "Ordered by the 
board, that the county clerk and treasurer be 

and are hereby authorized to purchase' a safe 
from G. R. Tileston, of Chetopa, if in their 
oijinion it will answer the purpose of the coun- 
ty, at a price not to exceed $245 ;" and on 
April 1 2th following the bill cf R. G. Tileston 
in the sum of $245 for a safe wa.s allowed, 
and the further bill of H. C. Bridgman in the 
sum of v$i6 for services in going to Chetopa 
and purchasing the safe was also allowed. On 
July 29. 1870. the commissioners made a 
contract with Beard & Bro., of St. Louis, for 
two safes, one with burglar-prcof box for 
county treasurer and one large fire-proof safe 
for county clerk, for which they agreed to pay 

These items are gi\-en for the purpose of 
showing how gradually the commissioners fur- 
nished offices and provided safeguards for the 
county property. Small bills of office furniture 
were procured from time to time as the ne- 
cessities of the case seemed to recjuire, but at 
no time has there been any lavish expenditure 
of mone}' in furniture or other accommoda- 
tions for the county offices. 


Prior to the summer of 1866 there was 
real!}- no civil protection for the settlers re- 
siding in what is now Labette county, it be- 
ing then a part of Neosho county. They had 
in theory civil officers, but they were so far 
away, and the organization of Neosho county 
was at the time so crude and imperfect, that 
little reliance could be placed by the settlers 
in this part of the county receiving anv aid 
from the officers up there. 

In June. George Bennett, of Montana, was 
appointed justice of the peace, and in Septem- 
ber, C. H. Talbott, of Oswego, was likewise 
appointed. But even after their appointment. 



the arm of the law could hardly be said to have 
sutificient strength to vigorously deal with law- 
breakers. This lack of civil law, almost of 
necessity, forced the settlers into an organiza- 
tion of their own for the purpose of protecting 
their rights and rendering redress to those who 
complained of having suffered grievances. 
Several of these organizations were formed 
early in 1866, and in them a sort of judicial 
air was maintained and the forms of law par- 
tially observed, and to the end that the real 
party at fault might be disco\-ered, and only 
those who were guilty should suffer. One of 
these organizations, known as the Soldiers' 
Club, was organized at Oswego in the spring 
of 1866; \Y. C. Watkins was president; D. M. 
Clover vice-president, and Maj. Victor secre- 
tary. It met in Clover's cabin by the river. 
Another of these organizations was formed 
by the settlers on Hackberry and Labette 
creeks; another one existed at Oswego, and 
still another en the Neusho, in the northern 
portion of the county. Each of these had 
more or less business in the way of settling- 
disturbances among the settlers, and on one or 
two occasions resort was had to measures 
which to some would seem se\-ere. 

Francis Wall, of Fair\'iew township, had a 
yoke of oxen stolen. Investigation revealed 
the fact that James IMoss, a settler on Hack- 
berry, had been peddling meat about the time 
that ]\Ir. Wall's oxen were missing. The local 
court became satisfied that Mr. Moss and some 
of his neighbors were the parties guilty of 
stealing Mr. Wall's oxen, and concluded that 
the best thing to do was to have them leave the 
count)-, and then to appropriate and sell their 
claims and applv the proceeds toward reimburs- 
ing yir. Wall for his oxen, and the balance to 
be used for contingent court expenses. A 
committee visited the parties at their homes 

and informed them of the judgment of the 
court, to which they took several exceptions; 
but the order was imperative, and by the help 
of some of the members of the court the goods 
of these parties were placed in their wagons 
and they were told that the best thing for them 
to do was not to be seen there any more. It 
was not long after this until a deputy sheriff 
from Neosho county came down for the arrest 
of some dozen members of the court who were 
engaged in this act of depopulation. The par- 
ties were taken in charge by the deputy sheriff 
and his posse, but before they had reached the 
line .that now divides Neosho and Labette 
counties, the Neosho county party were in- 
duced to believe that it would be as well for 
them not to further insist on taking their pris- 
oners with them. A proper return was made 
out on the warrant relieving the officers from 
responsibility, and the parties returned to their 

A large part of the business of these courts 
was in settling disputes between settlers in 
reference to their claims. Very few men were 
found who would insist upon a course of con- 
duct which had been condemned by one of these 
courts, and usually their judgments were as 
well obeyed as are those of the courts that 
have since been established b}- law. 


Labette count}- was a part ^jf the territory 
constituting the Seventh Judicial District of 
the State of Kansas until the 1870 session of 
the Legislature created the Eleventh Judicial 
District, since which time until 1901 Labette 
county was comprised in that district. On 
February 22, 1901, a law went into effect, de- 
taching Montgomery and Labette counties 
from the Eleventh Judicial District and form- 


ing- them into the Fourteenth Judicial District. 
Cherokee county, alone, now forms the Elev- 
enth Judicial District. The judges' of the 
court have been William Spriggs, of Garnett; 
John R. Goodin, of Humboldt; William C. 
W^ebb, of Fort Scott; Henry G. Webb, of Os- 
wego ; Bishop W. Perkins, of Oswego ; George 
Chandler, of Independence; John N. Ritter, 
of Columbus ; Jerry D. McCue, of Independ- 
ence: and A. H. Skidmore, of Columbus. 

On June 5th, 1867, the board of county 
commissioners "Ordered that the District 
Court will organize in Labette county, Kansas, 
at as early a day as practicable; W. Spriggs, 
Judge, will be notified by the county clerk to 
fix the day and month." And thereafter, on 
August ig, 1867, the board made the follow- 
ing request : 

"To the Hon. Mr. Spriggs, Judge of tlic 
Scz'ciiih Jmlicial District: We, the under- 
signed Commissioners of Labette county, do 
hereby request that you order a grand jury 
for the October term of the District Court for 
Labette count}-. State of Kansas." 

The first term of the court held in the coun- 
ty con\-ened on Monday, October 7th. 1867, 
and continued until the nth, when it finally 
adjourned. In compliance with the request of 
the county commissioners, a grand jury had 
been ordered and drawn, and the . first thing 
done upon the opening of court was to call the 
list of the grand jury. The following persons 
responded: H. W. Latham, D. B. Shultz, 
James F. JMolesworth, David Stanfield, Joseph 
McCormick, J. S. Lee, Dempsey Elliott, W. 
C. Watkins, and W. D. Birum. Upon the di- 
rection I if the court, the sheriff filled in the 
])anel with the following: Z. Harris, J. jNI. 
Dodson, Wm. H. Reed, E. W. King, Enos 
Reed, and J. Huntley. These 15 were duly 
sworn and charged. ' Joseph McCormick was 

appointed foreman, and Charles E. Simmons, 
deputy sheriff, was assigned to them as their 

The next action taken by the court was the 
appointment of W. J. Parkinson as' county at- 
torney. The following attorneys seem to have 
been admitted to practice in other courts, and 
to have been recognized as attorneys at this, 
viz. : J. D. McCue, W. P. Bishop, W. J. Park- 
inson, and W. A. Johnson. Committees were 
appointed to examine applicants, and after what 
what was supposed to have been an examina- 
tion and the applicants having satisfactorily 
shown their qualifications therefor, the follow- 
ing were duly admitted to practice : N. L. Hib- 
bard, J. S. Waters, Charles H. Bent, J. F. 
Newton, W. C. Watkins, and C C. Clover. 

As far as appears from the records, no 
case, either criminal or civil, was tried at this 
term of court. Some preliminary matters in 
the shape of demurrers, motions to make rec- 
ord more complete, etc., were presented to and 
decided by tlie court. A jury was impaneled 
in one case, but plaintiff finding it necessary to. 
amend petition, the case was continued without 

The first indictment found by the grand 
jury was against Samuel Gregory, who was 
charged with assault and battery with intent 
to kill Willoughby Doudna, with a whip-stock; 
and by another indictment he was charged 
with attempting to kill James M. Dodson with 
a revolver. From the fact that at a subsequent 
term of the court Mr. Gregory, with consent 
of the county attorney, pleaded guilty to an as- 
sault and battery alone, and was released from 
the charge with intent to kill, upon which -plea 
he was fined $10 by the court, it may fairly be 
inferred that the offense was not considered 
very aggravated. 

The first motion that seems to have been 


made in court was by J. D. McCue, to retiiiire 
the justice to send up a comjjlete transcript 
in case No. i, James P. May z's. John Stag- 
inaff, which was an appeal from Justice Lo- 
gan's court. 

This was the only term of court in this 
county presided over by Judge Spriggs. Be- 
fore the convening of the next term, in April, 
1868, the Hon. John R. Goodwin had suc- 
ceeded Judge Spriggs on the bench. 


Prior to 1873 the poor of the county had 
been cared for by the trustees of the respective 
townships, and the bills contracted in their 
support paid by the county. This item of ex- 
pense became a heavy burden, and a general 
desire for a better system was expressed. The 
county commissioners suljmitted to the electors 
of the county, at the spring election held April 
I, 1873, ^ proposition to vote $10,000 to pur- 
chase and improve a poor-farm. The propo- 
sition carried by a large majority. The bonds 
were sold to Hobart & Longwell, at 85 cents on 
the dollar. The commissioners bought the 
northwest quarter of S. t,^, T. TiT^. R. 21, and 
paid therefor $4,000. They immediately made 
arrangements for the erection of a house 
thereon, and by October of that year the house 
now standing on said farm was ready for oc- 

On j\Iay 7, 1873, it having been determined 
to open the asylum for the poor in temporary 
quarters until the county house could be erect- 
ed on the farm just purchased, T. B. Julian 
and his wife Emily C. Julian were employed 
as superintendent and matron of the house, at 
a salary of $40 a month for the former and 
$20 a month for the latter; they to provide 
a building ready-furnished, and receive and 

care for all the poor who would be sent them; 
the county to furnish provisions. Under this 
arrangement the asylum was opened about the 
loth of May, 1873, in the two-story building 
then and now standing on lot 8, in block 39, 
in Oswego, on the north side of the block on 
which the court-house stands. Here it was 
kept until the county house was finished, in 
October of that year, when the home was per- 
manently established there. 


T. B. Julian, from May 8, 1873, to Septem- 
ber 8, 1874; H. G. Newton, to October 3, 
1876; \V. H. Carico, to October 10, 1878; 
Robert A. Hogue, to March i, 1880; James 
H. Haggerty, to February 15, 1884; John Mc- 
Caw, to November 6, 1884; J. H. Haggerty, 
to March i, 1885 ; J. A. Warbington. to ]\Iarch 
I, 1889; William Dudgeon, to March i, 1891 ; 
L. H. Summers, to March i, 1892; William 
Dudgeon, to 1897; L. H. Summers, to 1901; 
George Guntle. 



Before any other township had moved to 
bridge its streams, or any action had been taken 
by the county looking to that end, Neosho 
township, early in 1868, took steps to bridge 
several of the streams leading into the Ne- 
osho. A tax of one and one-fourth per cent., 
to pay for such bridges, was levied that year. 
The dissatisfaction that resulted from this ac- 
tion was because of the belief that the money 
was not to be honestly appropriated, but that 
bridges of an inferior quality would be erected, 
for which a large price was to be paid. There- 
upon, Anthony Amend was appointed commis- 


bioner by the board of county commissioners, 
to make estimates antl oversee the construc- 
tion of these bridges. 


On June 21, 1871, the board, on petition 
of 96 electors, submitted a proposition to vote 
$40,000 for bridges in the county, and an elec- 
tion was called for July 21st. This proposition 
was opposed by the Register^ but favored b}' 
the Ailvaiicc; the latter, however, advocating 
making it $75,000 instead of $40,000. After- 
ward the commissioners' changed the amount 
to $105,000, and fixed the date of election for 
the latter part of August. It was proposed to 
expend the money as follows: $20,000 each 
for four bridges over the Neosho at points at 
or near Chetopa, Oswego, Montana, and Par- 
sons, and the balance was to be expended in 
bridges at one or more points over Labette, 
Hackberry, Pumpkin, and Big Hill creeks. A 
large anti-bridge-bond meeting was held at 
Mound Valley, and strong grounds taken 
against the issuance of bonds. On canvassing 
the vote it was found that not a single vote 
had been cast for bonds excepting in four town- 
ships; these were as follows: Montana i, 
Labette 5, Chetopa 156, Parsons 83, total, 245; 
all the rest of the vote, amounting to 1,295 
votes, was against the bonds. 


The first liridge in the county built by order 
of the county commissic-iners was across La- 
bette Creek, west of Oswego. The steps lead- 
ing to this commenced on July 17, 1869, when 
the commissioners ordered the question of is- 
suing $1,300 in bonds' to be submitted to the 
electors at the next general election. At the 

election held in November of that year, the 
proposition for issuing bonds was carried, and 
on December i6th following the board issued 
$500 of the amount so voted to Thomas 
Powers, and contracted with him for the con- 
struction of the bridge. On November 14, 

1870, the contractor having failed to complete 
the bridge, the $500 (amount appropriated by 
the county) being insufiicient, the commission- 
ers sold said bridge to Thomas Powers and 
W. W. Babbitt, who proposed to make of the 
same a toll bridge; they agreeing to pay the 
county $1,000 in ten 3'ears. On February 20, 

1 87 1, Messrs. Horner, Weaver, Patrick and 
Condon were appointed a committee to see 
about the re-purchase of this bridge for the 
county. On March 3d they reported that the 
bridge was worth $2,500, and recommended 
the board to liquidate the outstanding obliga- 
tion against it, and to assume control of the 
same. On April 3d, by agreement,, the con- 
tract with Messrs. Powers and Babbitt was 
canceled, the county agreeing to pay $850 and 
take the bridge. The bridge was soon there- 
after completed. On April 12, 1878, an order 
of the board was made to repair this old bridge, 
at a cost of ndt to exceed $985. Subsequently 
this order was revoked, and on June 5tli a 
new bridge was ordered constructed. The site 
of the bridge was changed from the section 
line to a point farther down the creek, near 
where it crosses the township line from Fair- 
view township to Oswego township. In 1884 
this old wooden bridge was replaced by an 
iron bridge, at a cost of $1,995. 

Oo April 17, 1878, the board directed the 
construction of a bridge across the Labette, 
on the line leading from Oswego to Chetopa, 
at a cost of $999. With this a wooden bridge 
was constructed, and ready for crossing in 
October of that year. This bridge stood until 



1885, when it was replaced with an iron struc- 
ture, at a cost of $2,000. 

In 1883 an appropriation of $1,300 was 
made for a bridge across the Little Labette, 
and in 1884 an appropriation of $2,500 for a 
bridge across the main Labette, both near 

A good bridge also spans this stream in 
Liberty township, west of the town of La- 
bette; and perhaps there may be bridges at 
other points, of which I have not spoken. 


In the fall of 1871 Chetopa voted $10,000 
for a bridge across the Neosho, work on which 
was commenced at once, and the abutments 
were completed early in 1872. Before the re- 
organization of the board of county commis- 
sioners in January, 1872, the old board made 
an appropriation of $950 to aid in the con- 
struction of this Chetopa bridge. This was a 
frame structure, and was completed in 1872; 
it remained until the spring of 1878, when it 
was washed away by high water. Diiring the 
next year there was no bridge- at this point, 
a ferry-boat being the means of crossing. In 
the spring of 1879 steps were taken to build 
a new bridge; it was nearly done, when, in 
July, a wind storm blew it down; work was 
again commenced, and it was nearly completed 
when, on August 14th, it was again entirely 
washed out by a rise in the river; it was not 
until November that the bridge was completed 
and ready for use. This bridge was a combina- 
tion of wood and iron and cost $1,900, $999 
of which was paid by the county, and the bal- 
ance by Chetopa. 

In 1888 this bridge gave place to the fine 
iron structure which now spans the Neosho at 

that point and which was erected entirely by 
the county, at a cost of $8,500. 

On June 30, 1872, Oswego city and town- 
ship voted $20,000 for the purpose of con- 
structing two bridges across the Neosho; one 
was to be located north and the other south- 
east of town. A contract was made with the 
King Iron Bridge Company for the erection 
of these two bridges, for the sum of $19,650, 
to be completed by December of that year. By 
some means the bonds were issued and deliv- 
ered before any work was done, and as usual- 
ly happens under such circumstances, the work 
was not done. Finally, some two years there- 
after a compromise was effected with the 
bridge company whereby it was to put in one 
bridge and be released from its further obli- 
gation. In 1874, under this arrangement, the 
bridge now spanning the Neosho north of 
town was constructed, and on No\-ember 27th 
of that year teams passed over it for the first 
time. On June 7, 1886, Oswego donated this 
bridge to the county, and it was accepted by 
the county as a county bridge. 

In 1885 it was arranged between the ofii- 
cers of Oswego city and the commissioners 
of Cherokee county to build a bridge across 
the Neosho at a point directly east of Oswego, 
in Cherokee county. Under this arrangement 
an iron bridge was constructed during the year, 
for which Oswego built the piers and abut- 
ments and Cherokee county put on the struc- 
ture. In April, 1885, the middle pier of this 
bridge, which was then being erected, was 
washed away; in February, 1886, the bridge 
was completed and accepted. 

Several efiforts have been made to secure 
a bridge across the Neosho at Montana. On 
September 29, 1881, Dr. J. M. Mahr pre- 
sented the petition of himself and 131 others, 
asking for an appropriation to build a bridge 


at that point. The commissioners did not 
make the appropriation, for the reason that the 
amount required was beyond the amount they 
Avere authorized to grant ; but they made an or- 
der submitting a proposition to the electors to 
vote on at the November election, whether or 
not they would authorize the issuance of 
$9,000 for the construction of such a bridge. 
At the election 309 votes were cast in favor of 
the proposition and 1,513 against it. 

In 1885 the Legislature passed an act 
authorizing the commissioners to build a 
bridge across the Neosho, at a point to be 
designated by three commissioners appointed 
in the act. 

At the time of the passage of this law it 
was intended that provision was to be made 
for two bridges — one at Montana, and one 
east of Parsons and these points were desig- 
nated by the commissioners. Notwithstand- 
ing the strenuous efforts that were made to 
procure an appropriation for a bridge, the 
board of county commissioners refused to act 
that year. 

In January, 1886, under authority of the 
act of 1885 above referred to, the board ap- 
propriated $7,000 for a bridge across the Ne- 
osho directly east of Parsons, and it was built 
that season. 

In 1888 the board made an appropriation 
of $8,500 for the construction of a bridge 
across the Neosho at Montana, and with this 
the iron bridge now spanning the stream at 
that point was built. 


Without going into the particulars as to 
each appropriation made for bridges over the 
various streams in the county, I may say that 
appropriations have been made by the board 
for bridging all the streams in the county at 

nearly every point where they are crossed by 
the principal thoroughfares : Hackberry, 
Pumpkin, Deer, Bachelor, Big Hill, The Cut-. 
Off, Chetopa, Turkey, as well as some of the. 
smaller creeks, are spanned with substantial 
bridges which have been erected at the coun- 
ty's expense. 

I think the general opinion is that the 
money expended for these bridges has been 
as wisely appropriated as any that the board 
'has been called upon to make, and that no one 
feels that too much has been done in that di- 

In building these bridges the board has 
usually required the township in which the 
bridge was located to put in the approaches, 
and sometimes to do even more than this ; but 
generally the main part of the exoense has been 
borne by the county. 







Mound Valley (includ- 
ing city) 





Mt. Pleasant (includ- 
ing Altamont city).. 



Elm Grove (including 
Edna city) 


Richland .. 

Oswego . 

Total of county. 



Mound Valley 













1,068 I 1,047 

2,265 I 2,( 
2,574 I 2,i 
6,736 I 7,( 

27,586 27,387 




The following is the amount of taxable 
property in the several townships of the coun- 
ty as reported by the county assessor on the first 
assessment e\er made oi the county in the year 


of Taxable 


of Taxable 






S 18,126 00 
1(5,961 00 
6,609 00 
2,549 00 
4,596 00 




Big Hill 

$9,369 50 
17,120 00 
3,116 00 
1,862 00 


So many different considerations enter into 
the question of the payment or non-payment 
of taxes that I shall not attempt to assign any 
reason for the fact that in several years a very 
large proportion of the real estate has gone to 
tax sale. In 1877 an act was passed author- 
izing a sale of all real estate on which any 
county or city held tax-sale certificates; pro- 
ceedings were recpiired by which a judgment 
was rendered determining the amount due on 
each tract, and directing the sale of such tract 
to be made by the sheriff substantially as upon 
execution. Under the provisions of this act, 
one and one-half pages of the Independent 
were occupied in July, 1877, by a notice de- 
scribing the real, estate on which judgment was 
to be asked. A small part of this property was 
redeemed before it went to sale, but the bulk 
of it was sold in December of that year, under 
these proceedings. As will be seen by the fol- 
lowing statement, prior to 1877 very much 
more land went to sale for taxes than after 
that date. In 1873 the Adzwice contained 
25 solid columns of description of real estate 
to be sold at tax sale. In 1874 the Independent 

contained 35 columns of such matter; in 1875, 
23 columns. In 1876 the list was embraced 
in eight columns in the Herald. In 1877 it 
filled but seven and one-half columns of tlie 
Independent. In 1878 12 columns of the In- 
dependent were required; and a less amount of 
space has been required each year since. 


The first few years no detailed annual re- 
port of the county expenses was made; there 
are one or two reports prior to 1871, but it 
seems evident that the figures there are in- 
correct. Reports exist subsequent to 1870, but 
as to some of them it is probable that they do 
not cover exactly a }'ear, and it is also quite 
e\-ident that some mistakes ha\-e been made 
by the party who copied them or by the printer ; 
but it is beUeved the following table shows 
substantially the amount expended by the coun- 
ty each fiscal year. For a number of years the 
fiscal year ended with Jtily, but more recently 
it has closed with October: 

1871 821,125 74 

1872 23,621 81 

1873 36,380 92 

1874 31,459 45 

1875 27,439 71 

1876 23,814 89 

1877 23,895 28 

1878 31,789 84 

1879 40,976 25 

1880 32,797 62 

1881 27,224 96 

1882 38,589 13 

1883 40,968 43 

1884 47,760 60 


1886 848,296 44 

1887 36,261 62 

1888 44,S97 14 

1889 41,019 93 

1891 34,160 48 

1891 31,244 44 

1892 34,834 10 

1893 33,943 82 

1694 42,559 05 

1895 41,201 78 

1896 44,617 05 

1897 42,363 88 

1898 41,168 55 

1899 40,976 25 

40,657 53 i 19U0 49,666 92 


From almost the first settlement of the 
count}-, there have been a few colored people 
living in it, a number of whom have been suc- 
cessful and have made good homes. Dairy- 
Nero settled upon the southeast quarter of 



section 15, adjoining Oswego, in 1866, and 
entered it at the Government land oiifice ; he 
made it his home until 1889, when he sold it 
for a good price. 

On April 4, 1870, the noon stage brought 
the news of the ratification of the fifteenth 
amendment, whereupon the colored men then 
in Oswego were informed of their rights, 
marched to the polls, the election being then in 
progress, where they deposited their ballots. 
Spencer Jones, who was the porter of the 
Oswego House, was the first colored man in 
the county, and of course one of the first in 
the State to exercise the right of suffrage. 

In the fall of 1879 the "exodus"' began, 
and hundreds of colored people, principally 
from Texas and Tennessee, and also many 
from other parts of the South, arrived in the 
county. Chetopa, Oswego and Parsons were 
almost overrun by them. Their coming was 
unexpected, and no provision for their care 
and comfort had been made. Buildings for 
shelter could not be procured. They were 
mostly without means, destitute of everything 
like comfortable clothing, and in a condition 
to appeal strongly to the sympathies of char- 
itable people. Rough board sheds were erect- 
ed and made as comfortable as could be, in 
which large numbers were housed for that 
winter. During the next year or two others 
came in, until the number of colored people 
formed c]uite a large percentage of the popu- 
lation of the cities named. Quite a number 
also were scattered over the county, more es- 
pecially in the river bottom. 

A very great improvement has been made 
in their condition both intellectually and finan- 
cially, and there are now among the colored 
people many well'-to-do families, who are in- 
telligent, industrious, and moral. Some of 

course have remained shiftless, trifling, and 
worthless. From all appearances they are a 
permanent part of the population. 


Almost from the first settlement of the 
county lovers of base ball have been organized, 
and have done what they could toward making 
the game popular and successful. As early 
as 1 87 1 clubs were organized at Oswego and 
Chetopa, and within the next two or three 
years organizations were had at several other 
places in the county, and frequent local con- 
tests took place. The craze seems to have 
reached its highest point in 1885, when there 
was a great strife by the Oswego club to be 
the champions not only of the county but of 
Southeastern Kansas, and under the leader- 
ship of F. C. Wheeler great proficiency was 
attained. The interest in the game has been 
kept up to a considerable extent, but since the 
departure of Mr. Wheeler it has never created 
the excitement it reached at that time. 

In the fall of 1885 a ladies' broom brigade 
was formed, and attained a considerable degree 
of skill at drilling under the command of Col- 
onel True. 

The roller-skating craze had perhaps for 
a season the greatest run of anything in the 
line of athletics that has been witnessed in the 
county. The height of its prosperity was wit- 
nessed about 1884. Commodious and well- 
furnished rinks were erected at Parsons and 
Oswego, and perhaps at other places in the 
county, and their owners supposed that they 
had a permanent and well-paying business es- 
tablished ; but the interest died out as sudden- 
ly as it arose, and nothing farther was heard 
of it. 




The county has been extremely fortunate 
since its organization in haing officers who 
performed their duties satisfactorily and who 
were true to the trust reposed in them. There 
have been three or four instances in which the 
county has been required to commence legal 
proceedings in order to collect from its offi- 
cers money which they held in their official 
capacity. When H. C. Bridgman went out 
of office as treasurer, his accounts were found 
to be short. A suit against him and his bonds- 
men was instituted, pending which a settlement 
was had, in which it was' agreed that he was 
indebted to the county in the sum of $8,750. 
This was settled by him and his bondsmen 
as follows : The county commissioners took 
from them the quarter-section of land on 
which they located the poorfarm , at the 
agreed price of $4,000. They gave their note 
for $3,000 and paid $1,750 in cash. By this 
means the county was saved from any finan- 
cial loss. 

When S. B. Abbott, the sheriff, completed 
the tax sale under the proceedings of 1877, 
he reported that he had received $1,698.02, and 
that his charges for fees and services were 
$2,008.48. These charges were largely in ex- 
cess of what the law authorized. Suit was 
brought by the commissioners to recover from 

him fees which he illegally held. The matter 
was finally settled by his paying $802.62. 

Under a change of law regulating the fees 
of county officers, a question arose between the 
county and one or two of its officers as to 
what fees they were entitled to, and, not agree- 
ing on the construction of the law, the matter 
was settled in court. This was prior to 1892. 
Since then questions affecting fees and sal- 
aries of county officers have arisen and some 
of them are still in court, undetermined. A 
committee that was appointed to examine the 
several county offices a few years ago reported 
some delinquencies, which have never been 
turned into the county treasury. 


In the evening of September 24, 1879, 
President Rutherford B. Hayes and wife. Gen- 
eral W. T. Sherman, George St. John and wife, 
and other dignitaries arrived at Parsons on 
their way to Neosho Falls, where they were 
to attend the district fair. People from all 
parts of Labette county went to Parsons, 
where a reception was tendered the Presi- 
dential party. An address of welcome was 
made by T. C. Cory, which was responded to 
by President Hayes and General Sherman. In 
the evening the whole assemblage was present- 
ed to the party. 



In the fall of 1866 Charles' Wadsack sowed 
a few acres of wheat, which he harvested the 
following summer; this was probably the first 
wheat crop raised in the county. There was 
no threshing-machine here at the time, and he 
was compelled to thresh it by a more primitive 
method, which was by ha\-ing his horses tread 
.upon it. \\'hen he got it to the mill, it was so 
dirty that it would not make flour very palat- 
able; however, it was the best that could be 
done, and it furnished him with something in 
the line of breadstuffs during that year. 

Quite a number of farmers had enough 
ground in cultivation by the fall of 1867 to 
enable them to put out fairly good crops of 
wheat, and in 1868 the first machinery for 
harvesting and threshing was brought to the 
county. The first threshing-machine was 
brought into the county by Ed. and George 
Cubbison. There were so many parties hav- 
ing wheat threshed who were all anxious to 
get it done early, that some of them had to 
be disappointed, and occasionally when the 
machine was through with a job, the neighbors 
would take possession of it and put it at work 
at the next nearest place instead of allowing 
it to go out of the neighborhood. 

In 1870 Martin Jackson brought on a new 
reaper and Thomas Phillips a threshing-ma- 
chine; these were probably the first machines 
of this kind south of Hackberry. 

The first mill in the county, so far as I have 
learned, that was prepared to do anything at 
grinding wheat, was John Hart's mill, on the 
Labette. In addition to the corn buhrs which 
he had been using, he put in wheat buhrs in 
the fall of 1868, and was able to grind wheat 
for the farmers in that community. It was 
not until about 1873 that self-binders and steam 
threshers appeared. 


It is said that \Y. W. Robbins, in Pleasant 
Valley, was the first person in the county to 
raise a crop of castor beans. This was in 1873. 
The yield was so good that the following sea- 
son many others planted, and since then this 
has been one of the largest crops raised. 


On July 8, 1873, Col. F. Swanwick brought 
a load of timothy to Oswego, which he sold 
to B. F. Hobart, at $8 per ton. The next day 
he sold a load of clover to H. C. Draper, at 
the same price. This was the first tame hay 



marketed in tlie county. At tliat time very 
few farmers had commenced to raise tame 
grass. Since then its production has generally 
increased, until nf)\v the crop of tame grass is 
quite. an item in the annual production of the 


In the spring of 1873 G. W. Everhart pro- 
cured the seed and distributed it among the 
farmers along Lal)ette creek, and secured the 
planting of quite a large acreage of cotton in 
the vicinity of Parsons. IMr. Everhart put in 
a small cotton-gin that fall, which he contin- 
ued to operate some two or three years, when 
it was removed to the Indian Territory. On 
February 5, 1874. a cotton convention was held 
at Parsons which resulted in awakening quite 
an interest in connection w'ith the raising of 
this product. After 1876 there was nothino: 
done in the way of raising cotton until 1879. 
when an enterprising colored man from Texas 
who was living on David Romine's place, a 
few miles southwest of Oswego, planted sev- 
eral acres of cotton and induced several other 
colored men living along the Neosho river to 
also put out a few acres. Mr. Roniine as- 
sisted in the erection of a cotton-gin at Os- 
wego that fall, and it was f(5und that the crop 
was large and profitable, considering the small 
number of acres that had been planted. In 

1880, 98 bales were ginned and shipped; in 

1 88 1 , 145 bales ; in 1 882 a very much larger 
acreage was planted, but the fall was so wet 
that it cut the crop short, and but 70 bales were 
ginned. The prospect was good again in 
1883 for a large crop, but this year, as the year 
previous, it was cut short Iiy the wet fall, and 
but 45 bales were ginned. Two years of par- 
tial failure rather discouraged those who had 
been engaged in the business, and very little 

if any was planted thereafter in th's \-icinity. 
In 1889 the Oswego gin was taken to Chetopa, 
in the vicinity (jf which a few colored men 
had raised small crops, but the amount that 
has been raised the last few years has been in- 


In the fall of 1866 grasshoppers came in 
great c|uantities. Of the little cro]3 that was 
raised that year most of it was matured so 
that they did not damage it, but everything that 
was green was devoured by them. Thev 
stayed until cold weather came. A rain in the 
fall filled the little brooks, and so washed them 
down stream that in places wagon-loads of 
them could be gathered up. The fodowing 
February was so warm that the eggs hatched, 
and a hard freeze coming on in March killed 
the young hoppers : so they bothered no 
more at that time. The next visit they made 
this county was in September, 1874. They 
came in one day in such myriads that what was 
green in whole fields of corn was devoured by 
them in a single day. All the trees were 
stripped of their leaves, and fruit trees were 
left bare of all foliage, hanging full of ripe ap- 
ples. They laid their eggs and disappearetl in 
the fall, so that the wheat crop then sowed 
was not all destroyed. About the last of 
March in the following spring they commenced 
hatching, and during April and May ate the 
young crop about as' fast as it came on. Corn 
had to be planted two or three tiiues, the last 
planting extending into July. About the last 
of May thev commenced moving, and during 
the fore part of June the}- were nearly all gone. 
In Se])tember, 187C), there was another visita- 
tion of them, but not to as great an extent as 
there had been two years preceding. 



In 1875 farmers learned that very much 
could be done towards destroying the hoppers 
and saving the crops. Several methods of de- 
struction were used, among others plowing a 
deep furrow into which the hoppers were 
driven and then covered, either by refilling it 
with dirt or by putting straw over them and 
burning them up. 


All the streams of the county are well sup- 
plied with fish. They are more numerous, of 
course, in the Neosho than in the smaller 
streams. Many have been taken from the Ne- 
osho measuring from four to six feet in 
length and two and one-half feet in circum- 
ference, weighing from 60 to 100 pounds. 

On July 5, 1875, a large catfish of about the 
size just described got into a basin on the riffle 
at Motter's ford, east of Oswego, and could 
not get away. Two men who were crossing 
caught it, and brought it to town. 

In the early settlement of the county large 
numbers of wild animals of various kinds were 
caught, and added very much to the stock of 
provisions of the early settlers. Deer, antelope, 
wild geese and turkeys, and prairie chickens, as 
well as other birds and animals, were found in 
abundance. Coyotes, badgers and other car- 
nivorous animals were here in larger numbers 
than was desirable to the settlers. As the coun- 
ty became settled they became less numerous. 


On July II, 1877, the county commission- 
ers passed an order putting into operation chap- 
ter 76 of the Laws of 1877, giving a bounty on 
scalps of certain wild animals. Under this or- 
der, almost an innumerable number of scalps 

was presented during the years the law was 
in force, and large sums of money were paid 
as bounty therefor. The law remained in op- 
eration under the above order until January 
13, 1885, when the commissioners made an or- 
der revoking their previous one. For several 
years no bounty was paid on the scalp of any 
wild animal, but for a number of years past 
the county has p,aid a bounty on wolf scalps. 


In January, 1886, G. J. Coleman, of Mound 
Valley, created something of an excitement in 
the neighborhood by dehorning his cattle. This 
was the first instance in which that system of 
treatment of stock had been practiced in this 
county. A party who was not friendly with 
Mr. Coleman caused his arrest on the charge 
of cruelty to animals. On the trial he was 
acquitted, having convinced the jury that his 
process was one of mercy rather than of cruelty 
to animals. Ever since that time this system of 
treatment has been generally practiced. 


In 1866, and for several years thereafter, 
the people frequently became alarmed over the 
introduction of Texas cattle and the spread 
of Texas fever among native stock. Several 
farmers lost quite a number of their cattle 
from what was supposed to be Texas fever. 
A number of arrests were made of those who 
had been instrumental in bringing stock into 
the county, but it was seldom that a conviction 
was had. It was a disputed question as to 
whether or not the stock died from the efifects 
of disease contracted from those introduced, 
and there was a large enough element in the 
county interested in bringing cattle in from the 


south to make quite a sentiment in the minds 
of the public opposed to such prosecution. 
However, the law was finally enforced so vig- 
orously that few parties attempted its viola- 


In 1897 a law was passed authorizing coun- 
ties to vote on putting into operation the re- 
quirement for the trimming of hedges and the 
cutting of weeds in the public roads'. The 
commissioners submitted this to a vote in 1898 
and it was carried, but on account of some 
omission in the action of the commissioners, 
it did not go into effect. It was again sub- 
mitted to a vote at the general election in No- 
vember, 1899, and was' again carried. There- 
upon, the commissioners caused it to be pro- 
claimed and in operation. 


For a number of years past, a belief has 
quite generally prevailed that our county is 
w'ithin the natural gas belt, and various efforts 

have been put forth to discover it. The first 
gas found in the county was in Mound Valley, 
in 1883, while prospecting for artesian water 
was going on. While some use was' made of 
this, the amount was not sufficient to furnish 
either light or heat to any number of families. 
In 1894, Oswego did some work at prospect- 
ing but with no practical result. In 1900^ an- 
other effort was made, and in December gas 
was struck at a depth of about 500 feet; but 
still the pressure was not sufficient to justify its 
use. At the time of this writing, prospecting 
is still progressing. In 1898 gas was found 
at Chetopa, not in a large quantity, but with 
sufficient force to be used for lighting and 
heating to a limited extent. Near the close 
of 1900, farther prospecting was done at 
Mound Valley and with better results than 
theretofore. It is now believed that they have 
it in a sufficient quantity to justify its use. 
Those interested are still hoping that farther 
prospecting will discover it at some point in 
the county in much larger volume than has' 
yet been secured. In 1897 Parsons secured 
gas for its inhabitants by contracting for its 
being piped there from Neodesha. 



On the pages following will be found in tabulated form a full report of the various field crops of the county, 
from 18/2 to 1900 inclusive, showing acreage, product and value. For these valuable tables I am indebted to the 
reports of the State Board of Agriculture. 

TABLE the Acres, Product and 

Value of 

Field Crops in Labette County. 








Product * 

Value * 
























































































Spring wheat 




Irish potatoes. 

Sweet potatoes 




Millet and Hungarian 

Timothy meadow 

Timothy pasture 

Prairie pasture 












Winter wheat 

Spring wheat 






Irish potatoes 

Sweet potatoes 


Castor beans 











































. 6,825 






















































































Broom corn 








Timothy meadow 

Clover meadow 

Prairie meadow 





•■■■:7:::i'::::: ::::. 



j 106,825 

i 81,397,264 

the State Board of Agriculti 

• elsewhere, which shows the product j 



TABLE Showing the Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County 

Winter wheat .bu. 

Spring wheat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats bu. 

Rye bu. 

Barley bu. 

Buckwheat bu 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 

Sorghum gals. 

Castor beans bu. 

Cotton lbs. 

Flax ■ bu. 

Hemp lb.=. 

Tobacco lbs. 

Broom corn ... lbs. 

Millet and Hungarian tons 

Timothy meadow tons 

Clover meadow .tons 

Prairie meadow tons 

Timothy pasture 

Clover pasture 

Blue-grass pasture 

Prairie pasture 















604,455 $544,009 

40 32 

1,909,920 420,182 

343,969 85,992 

7,780 4,356 

240 144 














5,560 !i 


















3 4.54 





















Winter wheat bu. 

Spring wheat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats bu. 

Rye bu. 

Barley bu. 

Buckwheat bu. 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 

Sorghum gals. 

Castor beans bu. 

Cotton lbs. 

Flax bu. 

Hemp lbs. 

Tobacco lbs. 

Broom corn lbs. 

Millet and Hungarian tons 

Timothy meadow tons 

Clover meadow tons 

Prairie meadow tons 

Timothy pasture 

Clover pasture 

Blue-grass pasture 

Prairie pasture 











































































17,412 , 
8,490 i 
2,603 I 













177,549 ! 81,492,438 


TABLE Showing the Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County 










Winter wheat bu. 

Spring wheat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats bu. 

Rye bu. 

Barley bu. 

Buckwheat bu. 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 

Sorghum : gals. 

Castor beans bu. 

Cotton lbs. 

Flax bu. 

Hemp lbs. 

Tobacco lbs. 





















































































































Rice corn bu. 

Pearl millet tons 

Millet and Hungarian tons 


Clover meadow tons 

Prairie meadow tons 


Clover pasture 

Other grasses. 











Acres | Product 





Winter wheat bu. 

Spring wheat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats bu. 

Rye bu 











































































Barley bu. 

Buckwheat bu. 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 

Sorghum gals. 

Castor beans bu. 

Cotton lbs. 

Fla.x bu 













Tobacco lbs. 

Broom corn lbs. 

Rice corn bu. 

Pearl millet ... tons 




Millet and Hungarian tons 

Timothy meadow tons 






Clover meadow . . . tons 


Other tame grasses tons 










Other grasses 

Prairie pasture. 







TABLE Showing the Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County. 

Winter wheat. 
Spring wheat. 



Irish potatoes 

Sweet potatoes 


Castor beans 



Broom corn 

Rice corn 

Millet and Hungarian. 



Orchard grass 

Blue grass 

Other tame grasses.. . . 
Prairie grass, fenced. . 










. bu. 
. . lbs. 




, .tons 

, .tons 


Totals . 
































2,796 : 6,990 

66,916 1 95,020 




































Si, 709,497 

Winter wheat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats .' bu. 

Rye bu. 

Barley bu. 

Buckwheat bu. 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 


Castor beans bu. 

Cotton lbs. 

Flax bu. 

Tobacco lbs. 

Broom corn lbs. 

Millet and Hungarian tons 



Orchard grass tons 

Blue grass 

Other tame grasses 

Prairie grass, fenced tons 

















253 126,500 4,42' 

11,431 22,862 114,310 

16,418 h 
3,138 : I 

388 i y 37,143 
2,406 I 





63,250 1 41,227 













250,621 I [$1,667,440 

206,205 81,520,075 

►Product of 1886. 



TABLE Showing the Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County. 

Winter wheat 

Spring wheat 






Irish potatoes 

Sweet potatoes 


Castor beans 





Broom corn 

Millet and Hungarian 



Orchard grass 

Blue grass 

Other tame grasses . . 
Prairie grass, fenced 

, . lbs. 
. .lbs. 













tons 46,066 

























61,600 5,160 
44.800 I 1,668 
10,860 I 43,440 




















































I n,972 






Winter wheat 




Oats . . . 




.. ■ bu 


Sweet potatoes 





Flax . ... 




Millet and Hungarian 



Timothy . . . 

Orchard grass 


Blue grass 

Prairie grass, fenced 
























1- |8,229 



























12 650 

3,693 I 

52 " 


































249,683 ' 81,638,865 

♦Product of 1887. +Product of 1888. JProduct of 1889. gProduct of 1890. 



TABLE SHOWING THE Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County 

Wintir wheat 

Spring wheat 






Irish potatoes 

Sweet potatoes 

Castor beans 





Broom corn 

Millet and Hungarian. 

Milo maize 

Kaffir corn 

Jerusalem corn 



Blue grass 


Orchard grass 

Other tame grasses. . . 
Prairie grass, fenced. . 

, .lbs. 
■ tons 

Totals . 
























































5,850 5,850 

5,229 6,013 








>t 8,915 


Winter wheat 

Spring wheat 






Irish potatoes 

Sweet potitoes 

Castor beans 


" For syrup or sugar. 

" For forage or grain. 




Broom corn 

Millet and Hungarian 

Milo maize 

Kaffir corn 

Jerusalem corn 



Blue grass 


Orchard grass 

Other tame grasses 

Prairie grass, fenced 

• gals 



Wheat on hand March 1, 1893. 43. 
Corn on hand March 1. 1893, 123.7 
♦Product of 1891. tProduct o£ 1 

51,004 1,077,186 

































22,106 ! 



5,215 |1 













187,821 $1,270,327 i| 217,811 











i2 bushels; March 1, 1894, 72,826 bushels: March 1, 18ii5, 8.i,336 bushels. 
1 bushels; March 1. 1894, 87,32« bushels; March I. 1895, 108.378 bushels. 
1)2. gPnduct of 1893. ,1 Product of 1S94. ^Product estimated in 


TABLE Showing the Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County. 

Winter wheat bu. 

Spring wlieat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats bu. 

Rye bu. 

Buckwheat bu. 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 

Castor beans bu. 

Sorghum, for syrup or sugar gals. 

for forage or grain tons 

Flax bu. 

Broom corn lbs. 

Millet and Hungarian. .■ tons 

iVIilo maize tons 

Kafifir corn tons 

Jerusalem corn tons 



Blue grass 

Alfalfa tons 

Orchard grass 

Other tame grasses 

Prairie grass, fenced tons 










. 69 

















































y-f 3,938 


















Winter wheat bu. 

Corn bu. 

Oats bu. 

Rye bu. 

Barley bu. 

Irish potatoes bu. 

Sweet potatoes bu. 

Castor beans bu. 

Cotton lbs. 

Flax bu. 

Hemp lbs. 

Broom corn lbs. 

Millet and Hungarian tons 

Sorghum, for syrup or sugar gals. 

for forage or grain tons 

Milo maize tons 

Kafifir corn tons 



Blue grass [ , 

Alfalfa '.'.'.".". '.tons 

Orchard grass 

Other tame grasses 

Prairie grass, fenced tons 






















J-t 4,009 




































U heat on hand March 1, 1891!, (19.2.11 bushels; March 1 
Corn on hand .March 1. 18%, 289,.'i08 bushels; March 1,' 
♦Product of 1895. tProduct of 189li. JProduct of 189T. SProduct of 1898. 


TABLE SHOWJNG THE Acres, Product and Value of Field Crops in Labette County 










































Irish potatoes.. 

Sweet potatoes 




. 25,298 


Broom corn 








Sorghum, for syrup or sugar 

for forage or grain 

. . . gals. 















^* 3,559 




Orchard grass 

Other tame grasses 

Prairie grass, fenced 




Wlieat on hand March 1, 1900. 30,866 bushels. 
Corn on hand March 1, 1900, 240,332 bushels. 
♦Product of 1899. 


Almost from the commencement of our 
history, the farmers have in one form or an- 
other been more or less effectively organized 
for the promotion of agriculture, and the ad- 
vancement of their interests. 

farmers' clubs. 

The first organization of this kind of which 
I have any knowledge was the Farmers' Club, 
of Oswego township, which was organized in 
October, 1870. F. Swanwick was elected pres- 
ident, and J. P. Jones secretary. 

The Richland Township Farmers' Club 

was organized April 6, 1872, although steps' 
toward the organization of a club seem to have 
been taken a year previous. S. K. Thomas, 
was chairman and J. N. Watson secretary o£ 
the temporary organization, and T. J. Calvin 
and J. N. Watson were the permanent presi- 
dent and secretary. 

In January, 1881, the Hackberry Club was. 
organized, with D. B. Crouse as president. 

It is not improbable that clubs were or- 
ganized at other points, of which I have re- 
ceived no information. 

farmers' alliance. 

On Mav 20, 1882, a Farmers' Alliance was 



organized at Chetopa, with Isaac Butterworth 
president and A. E. Bartlett secretary. ^ I 
know of no other alUance being- organized prior 
to the genera] move some years later. 

farmers' union. 
The only account I have of this organiza- 
tion is the following announcement for a 4th 
of July celebration, made by them June 14, 


"There will be a basket picnic and meeting 
of the Farmers' Union of the county at Hart's 
Mill, two and one-half miles northwest of La- 
tette City, on the Labette River ; not only for 
the purpose of celebrating our nation's anni- 
versary, but for the purpose of declaring our 
independence and emancipation from the thrall- 
dom of monopolies and corporations that now, 
through their moneyed influence, oppress the 
laboring classes (the bone and sinew of the 
nation) to an extent more alarming than the 
tyranny our forefathers emancipated them- 
selves from. J. F. Piper, 

Richard Baker, 
W. HoucK, 


The farmers' organization known as "The 
Grange," or "Patrons of Husbandry," was in- 
troduced into this county in the summer of 
1873. I do not know where the first grange in 
the county was organized, but John Nelson, 
of Neosho township, was county organizer, 
and on September 11, 1873, he organized the 
Pleasant Valley Grange, in District No. 3. 

On October 15. 1873, Richland Grange 
•was' organized, at Watson's school-house, with 
D. J. Doolen master, J. C. McKnight overseer, 
and John N. AVatson secretary. 

County Organization. — On December 

19, 1873. the various granges of the county 
met at Labette to form a council. J. F. Hill 
was chosen chairman, and C. W. Olmstead 
secretary. At this meeting a constitution 
which did not allow women to vote was 
adopted, but it was unsatisfactory to the local 
organizations. On December 27th an ad- 
journed meeting was held, in which 70 dele- 
gates were present, representing 20 granges. 
Women, who had been excluded from the for- 
mer convention, were admitted to this. The 
county organization was now completed, and 
the following officers were elected : J. J. 
Woods, master; J. F. Hill, overseer; John 
Richardson, treasurer; D. C. Thurston, secre- 
tary; S. W. Collins, business agent; and the 
following executive committee : J. T. Lamp- 
son, S. M. Canaday, and T. A. Fellows. The 
first meeting after its organization was held 
February 24, 1874. At this meeting the sec- 
retaryship was changed, and given to I. W. 
Patrick; and a grange store was authorized to 
be started as soon as possible. H. C. Cook 
was appointed county organizer. 

Store. — In 1874 a grange store was opened 
at Labette, with an authorized capital stock of 
$4,000. S. W. Collins, the business agent of 
the council, was salesman. In June, 1875, J. 
T. Lampson was appointed agent of the grange 
store in the place of Samuel Collins. From 
a financial standpoint the store never proved a 
success, and quite an amount of money was 
sunk in the enterprise. 

Condemnatory Action. — On March 20, 
1875, at a meeting of the county council, it 
was, on motion of J. C. Murphy, "Resolved, 
That the county council condemn the late ac- 
tion of the county commissioners in regard to 
their refusal to accept aid to the destitute of 
Labette county." At the same time the fol- 
lowing resolutions were adopted : 



"Resolved, By the Labette County Council 
of Patrons of Husbandry in its regular session, 
that we, as a body, asking boot from no one, 
and in sympathy with our unfortunate yeo- 
manry of this State, do bitterly denounce and 
condemn the late action of the Senate of the 
State of Kansas in regard to relief to the desti- 
tute of this State, as miserly, misanthropic in 
its nature, wrong and injurious to its loyal' 
destitute, and a shame and a disgrace to the 
fair name of grateful Kansas. 

"Resolved, That we will heartily endorse 
any action of the Governor of this State, by 
way of appropriating a portion of the surplus 
accumulated funds of the treasury of this State, 
to render aid, relief and assistance to those re- 
quiring the same from the destitution that vis- 
ited the State last season. 

"Resolved, That we will not support for 
office anyone who would not be willing that 
the next legislature legalize the same." 

These organizations were maintained in 
the county but two or three years, or at least 
there was no active work done after that, al- 
though there may have been a few local or- 
ganizations kept up somewhat longer. 

Examining County Offices. — In July, 
1874, the county council of Patrons of Hus- 
bandry appointed a committee of five, con- 
sisting of Col. J. J. Woods chairman, John F. 
Hill, secretary, S. M. Canaday, Thomas Bates, 
and J. Merwin, to make a thorough examina- 
tion of the county offices "for the purpose of 
ascertaining where the money goes." The 
committee spent some time in the court-house, 
and at the end of their investigation made an 
exhaustive report, filling over five columns of 
newspaper. A number of recommendations 
were submitted by the committee, pointing out 
defects in the law which should be remedied 
and of administration which should be cor- 

rected. It is not improbable that good re- 
sulted from this examination, if in nothing 
else than in making a large proportion of the 
people better acquainted with the way their 
business was conducted. 



On January 31 1868, a number of the citi- 
zens of the county formed an organization for 
the purpose of locating fair grounds on the 
southwest quarter of section 16, township 33, 
range 21, and N. L. Hibbard, W. S. Newlton, 
C. H. Bent, Isaac Butterworth and others filed 
a charter in the office of the Secretary of State 
on February 13th for the incorporation of the 
Labette County Agricultural and Mechanical 
Society. W. S. Newlon was elected president 
and W. P. Bishop secretary. The second issue 
of the Neosho Valley Eagle contains a notice 
that the books of the society are open for sub- 
scription to its capital stock. This organiza- 
tion never succeeded in starting a fair, or doing 
anything that looked practically to that end. 


In the latter part of June, 1870, a call was 
made through the Oswego Register for those 
interested in the organization of a fair to meet 
at the court-house on July 2d for the purpose 
of taking steps to secure such result. On that 
day there was quite a gathering of the citizens 
of the county, who effected a temporary organ- 
ization by electing D. B. Crouse chairman and 
Nelson Case secretary. The establishment of 
a fair was discussed, and it was finally agreed 


to organize the Labette County Agricultural 
and Horticultural Society. A board of di- 
rectors representing all parts of the county was 
selected, and the following officers chosen : D. 

B. Crouse, president; Jonas Clark, vice-pres- 
ident; C. H. Lewis, secretary; William Steele, 
treasurer. Under this management a fair was 
held on the south bank of the Neosho River, on 
the northwest quarter of section 15, in Oswego. 
The fair was a success. Annual fairs were 
thereafter held under the auspices of this socie- 
ty up to and including 1883. Most of these were 
successful both in the matter of securing a 
good display of the products of the county and 
in financial management. In 1873 a new char- 
ter was obtained, and the association put on a 
firmer basis. Fair grounds were purchased in 
the northeast part of Oswego city, and a com- 
mencement made toward improving and fitting 
them up for the holding of fairs. As indicat- 
ing what the success of some of the first fairs 
were, I may mention that in 1873 the receipts 
were $2,135.15, and the disbursements $1,- 
957.61; in 1874 the receipts were $2,279.84, 
and disbursements $2,386.09. The following 
two years the receipts were not enough to pay 
expenses and premiums, and a small indebted- 
ness was thereby created. The next year or 
two was more successful. In 1880 a large am- 
phitheater was erected, whereby an indebted- 
ness' was created, to secure which a mortgage 
on the company's grounds was executed; and 
this finally was foreclosed, and the property 
sold thereunder. In 1883 the association vir- 
tually disbanded,, and made no other attempts 
at holding a fair. The following is a list 
of the presidents and secretaries of this associ- 
ation after the first fair: Presidents — 1871, 
D. B. Crouse; 1872, Isaac Butterworth; 1873, 

C. M. Monroe; 1874-75, J. J. Woods; 1876, F. 
A. Bettis; 1877-78, R. W. Wright; 1879. J. P. 

I'pdegraff; 1880, R. W. Wright; 1881, C. O. 
Perltins; 1882-83. C. Montague. Secretaries 
— 1871, C. H. Lewis; 1872-74, C. B. Wood- 
ford; 1875-77, C. A. Wilkin; 1878, C. B. 
Woodford; 1879-83, C. A. Wilkin. 


In the sumer of 1884, it having become 
apparent that the Agricultural and Horticul- 
tural Society was not going to hold a fair that 
season, a new organization under the name of 
the Neosho Valley Stock Association was 
formed, of which D. B. Crouse was president. 
Isaac Butterworth, vice-president, and C. B. 
Woodford, secretary. Under its auspices a 
fqir was held on the fair grounds in Oswego, 
commencing the last of September. No pre- 
miums were paid, but diplomas were given ac- 
cording to merit. The treasurer's report at 
the close of the fair shows the total receipts to 
be $164.40, and expenses $156.65. In 1885 
the officers were: J. F. Hill, president; D. 
Doyle, vice-president; C. B. Woodford, secre- 
tary; and J. W. Marley, treasurer. Quite a 
successful' fair was held, commencing Septem- 
ber 8th. 


No attempt was made at holding a fair at 
Oswego from 1885 to 1891. During the sum- 
mer of 1 89 1 a number of the citizens organized 
the Labette County Horticultural and Agri- 
cultural Fair Association, and elected R. W. 
Wright, president; J. D. H. Reed, secretary; J. 
G. Bradley, treasurer and superintendent. A 
fair was held September 14th to i6th. The 
exhibits and attendance were encouraging. 
The receipts were large enough to pay all ex- 
penses, which amounted to $260. 



In 1892 the association held its second fair, 
from September 29th to October ist. The 
officers this' year were : J. B. Montgomery, pres- 
ident; J. D. H. Reed, secretary; George Pfaff, 
treasurer; and J. G. Bradley, superintendent. 
The receipts were $600, and all premiums and 
obligations were paid in full. 

About the same course has been pursued 
•each year since 1892. For two or three years 
past, instead of going to the fair grounds, a 
street fair in the city of Oswego was held year- 
ly, which was quite as interesting and brought 
out as good a display of the products of the 
county as a regularly conducted agricultural 
fair. Street fairs have also been held in Che- 
topa and Parsons. 


In the summer of 1872 a number of the 
■citizens of the vicinity of the town of Labette 
organized the Labette County Agricultural, 
Horticultural and Mechanical Association, for 
the purpose of holding a fair at that point. F. 
C. Burnette was elected president and Wm. 
Houck secretary. A fair commencing the 8th 
of October of that year was held, with a fair 
degree of success. The following officers were 
•elected for 1873: President, S. W. Collins; 
vice-president, J. F. Piper, secretary, William 
Houck ; treasurer, Harvey I. Cox. It was de-- 
cided to hold a fair in the fore part of October, 
tut no fair seems to have been held ; and this, 
.apparently, was the last of this association. 


Early in 1882 steps were taken by some of 
the citizens of Parsons to form an organiza- 
tion for the purpose of holding a fair at that 

place. The Parsons Fair and Driving Park 
Association was formed, with a board of direct- 
ors composed of its leading business men, of 
which G. W. Gabriel was president and J. R. 
Brown secretary. Good grounds were secured 
and improved, and fi'om 1882 to 1886, inclu- 
sive, successful fairs were held. After that no 
fair was held till 1892. when another effort 
was made, with a good result. 


In August, 1884, the Short-Horn Breeders' 
Association was organized, with the follow- 
ing officers: Dr. B. R. Van Meter, president; 
Chas. W. Stoddard, vice-president; M. E. 
\\'illiams, secretary ; J. C. Christian, treasurer. 


Those engaged in horticulture and fruit- 
growing were only a little behind those inter- 
ested in agriculture and stock-raising in tak- 
ing steps to unite their interests for mutual im- 
provement in growing and disposing of their 
products. The early records of the Labette 
County Horticultural Society have been lost, 
and I am^ not able to give the date of its organi- 
zation; but it was sometime prior to 1877. 
Nearly all of the fruit-growers in the vicinity 
of Oswego and a number in other parts of the 
county have been members and active workers 
of this society. Among those who have been 
most prominent as workers in the society I 
mention the following : H. S. Coley, J. L. Will- 
iams, N. Sanford, J. A. Gates. John F. Hill, J. 
B. Draper, D. Doyle, Isaac Butterworth, W. S. 
Newlon, G. A. Stover, Wilf. Cooper, Henry 
Tibbitts, George Pfaff. I do not wish to be 
understood as giving in this list the names of 
all of those who have been prominent workers 



in this society, but only such as now occur to 
me. Had I the records of the society the list 
might be very much enlarged. During the 
summer the society frequently holds picnics, at 
which all phases of the question of fruit-grow- 
ing are fully and carefully discussed, and much 
of the success of the fruit-growing business 
may be fairly attributed to the work of this 



There is no existing record of the organiza- 
tion of this society. It was probably organized 
early in 1869. The first minutes I have been 
able to find of its meetings are those for a 
semi-annual meeting held at Oswego on No- 
vember 7, 1870; the society was then called 
the Osage and Southern Kansas Medical Asso- 
ciation. C. M. Gilkey was president and Robert 
Steele secretary. At this meeting it was voted 
to change the name to the Labette County Med- 
ical Association; W. S. Newlon was elected 
president ; George Lisle, vice-president ; Robert 
Steele, secretary ; and J. W. Wier, treasurer. A 
uniform schedule of fees was adopted. 

On June 8, 1871, a meeting of the society 
was held, at which W. S. Newlon was president 
and D. D. McGrath, secretary. 

On June 16, 1875, after a lapse of two or 
three years, a meeting was held, and the asso- 
ciation revived. George Lisle was elected pres- 
ident; W. S. Newlon, vice-president, C. Hum- 
ble, secretary, and B. R. Van Meter, treasurer. 

On May 18, 1885, the society again organ- 
ized, and elected J. J. Kackley president, and 
A. O. Garnett, secretary. 

The society now maintains an organiza- 
tion and holds regular meetings. 


On September 15, 1881, the members of the 
Indiana met at Labette City and organized a 
county bar association, with the following 
officers: H. G. Webb, president; Nelson Case 
and George S. King, vice-presidents; J. H. 
Morrison, secretary, J. A. Gates, treasurer. 
This association was never very active, and 
after a brief existence it was abandoned, since 
which time no effort has been made to organ- 
ize or maintain an association. 


On June 19, 1886, the former residents of 
Indiana mea at Labette City and organized a 
Hoosier Association. Wilf. Cooper was 
elected president and W. W. Cook, secretary. 
This association has held several annual meet- 
ings since then, and maintains a feeling of 
friendship and pride among the old "Indian- 


Several attempts have been made to secure 
a permanent organization of the old settlers 
in the county. As early as April 16, 1884, 
there was a preliminary meeting held at the 
court-house in Oswego, at which a committee 
was appointed to report a plan for enrollment 
at an adjourned meeting to be held thereafter. 
D. B. Grouse was chosen chairman and C. B. 
Woodford secretary. One or two other meet- 
ings were held the following month, and a 
form of constitution was adopted. However, 
this organization never did anything more than 
to have these preliminary meetings. In 1888 
another effort was made to secure an organiza- 
tion, and a meeting of the old settlers was 
called through the Independent, to be held on 



the 22d of February of that year. A commit- 
tee was appointed at this meeting to call a pub- 
lic meeting and arrange for a large attendance 
of the old settlers throughout the county. 
This committee called such meeting to be held 
at the fair grounds in Oswego on May lo, 
1888. ■ An organization was formed at this 
time, and since then some two or three other 
meetings have been held; but the general in- 
terest has not yet been secured which it is to 
be hoped will be shown by those who have done 
so much to make the county what it is. 


In its issue of July 6, 1878, the Oswego 
Independent contained a notice of about a half- 
dozen lines stating that a meeting of the citi- 
zens of the county would be held at the court- 
house on Tuesday evening following, for the 
purpose of taking steps to organize a historical 
society. It was understood that this notice 
was inserted by J. S. Waters, who was then 
doing editorial work on the Independent. On 
July 9, 1878, a few parties met at the court- 
house, pursuant to said notice. Alexander 
Duncan, of Canada township, was' made tem- 
porary chairman, and J. S. Waters, temporary 
secretary. The matter of a historical society 
was talked of, and before the adjournment of 
the meeting a committee, consisting of Nelson 
Case, W. A. Starr and R. M. Donley, was ap- 
pointed to prepare a plan for organization to 
be submitted in one week from that time. On 
Tuesday evening, July 16, the meeting met as 
per adjournment. The committee appointed 
to prepare the plan reported through Nelson 
Case, its chairman, recommending the forma- 
tion of a society on a very simple basis, "keep- 
ing in view sooner or later the incorporation 
of a society," and submitting the draft of a con- 

stitution. The report of the committee was 
adopted, and the following officers elected: 
President, Nelson Case; vice-president, George 
Lisle; secretary, J. S. Waters; corresponding 
secretary, M. W. Reynolds; treasurer, C. M. 
Monroe; with vice-presidents from each of the 
townships. There has never been any change 
in the presidency since its organization. In 
1879 W. A. Starr was elected secretary in 
place of Mr. Waters, who moved away; this 
position he continued to hold until his death. 
On November 21, 1 881, the society became in- 
corporated by filing its charter in the ofifice of 
the Secretary of State. Since Mr. Starr's 
death E. B. Baldwin and J. R. Hill have filled 
the office of secretary; H. C. Cook and M. E. 
Williams have held the office of treasurer. 

Nearly complete files of many of the coun- 
ty papers' have been preserved, and other objects 
of interest have been secured, but for several 
years the society has held no meetings and has 
been practically disorganized. 


On Saturday, September 19, 1875. a meet- 
ing was held at Oswego, which was attended 
by citizens from various parts of the county, 
for the purpose of organizing a board auxiliary 
to the State board to secure a proper represen- 
tation at the Centennial Exposition. The con- 
stitution and by-laws recommended by the 
State board were adopted, and a board of man- 
agers elected, consisting of the following indi- 
viduals: W. S. Newlon, P. T. Rhodes. F. B. 
McGill, Henry Tibbitts, J. F. Hill, J. J. Woods, 
A. Gebert, H. C. Cook, and J. M. Cavaness. 
A quorum of the board being present, a meet- 
ing was held, and the permanent officers of the 
board chosen, with the following result : Pres- 
ident, J. M. Cavaness; vice-president, F. B. 



McGill ; secretary, J. F. Hill ; treasurer, J. J. 
Woods. The board of officers constituted the 
executive committee. The committees whose 
duty it was to make collections of the various 
articles requested by the State board were all 


On August 26, 1892, a meeting of the ladies 
of the county was held at the parlors of the 
Oswego House, for the purpose of seeing the 
county properly represented at the Columbian 
Exposition. The following permanent officers 
were elected: Mrs. M. M. Woodruff, presi- 
dent; Mrs. Mary E. Perkins, vice-president; 
Mrs. Alice Greene, secretary; Mrs. Elizabeth 
Elliott, treasurer. Mrs. Woodruff having de- 
clined to serve, Mrs. Lyda A. Baldwin was 
elected president in her place. 

G. A. R. 

Pea Ridge Post, No. 118, is located at 
Chetopa, and was organized August 21, 1882. 
Post commanders : Capt. Thomas O'Hare, Col. 
J. B. Cook, James F. Sterling, L. M. Bedell, 
S. T. Herman, W. O. Breckenridge, Robert 
Orme, William Stevens, H. J. Schock, W. H. 
Hooper, J. W. Bowles, and George Rodgers. 
Most of the commanders have served more 
than one term. Under the auspices of this 
post for eight years have been held annual 
soldiers' reunions. The first was held Octo- 
ber 18-21, 1893. 

Antietam Post, No. 64, is located at Par- 
sons, and was organiezd June 2, 1882; it has 
been incorporated under the laws of Kansas. 
There are 400 names on its roll. The city of 
Parsons conveyed to the post, for a nominal 
consideration, a tract in Oakwood Cemetery in 
which all old soldiers are buried free of expense 

to their friends, if they so desire; eighty-four 
old soldiers have already been buried in these 
grounds. Two eight-inch Columbiads, weigh- 
ing 9,240 pounds each, a gift of the War De- 
partment, mounted on cut-stone supports with 
concrete foundations, point over the graves of 
those buried there. These grounds are sub- 
stantially and beautifully enclosed with cut 
sandstone coping and cap stones, and the 
graves are marked with Government head- 
stones. Nearly $5,000 have been expended on 
this burying place. Post Commanders : W. H. 
Morris. Luther Gilmore, H. L. Partridge, T. 
D. Ganer, W. P. SchoU, W. H. Porter, R. D. 
Talbot, J. D. Scott, A. M. Sourbeer, 0. E. 
Peters, W. C. King, George W. Gould, Mills 
Voris, R. E. Holloway, W. C. Weaver, Au- 
gustus Martin, and John H. Lyles. In 1895 
was held the first reunion at Parsons, under 
the impulse given by this post. These reun- 
ions have been held annually since, under the 
direction of a committee and officers elected by 
those who participate therein. 

Mound Valley Post, No. 139, was organ- 
ized November 9, 1882. There are no names 
on its roll of old soldiers who have been mem- 
bers of this post. Only about 17 are in good 
standing; five have died, and the others have 
withdrawn by suspension or removal. The fol- 
lowing have been commanders: Josephus' 
Moore, \\'. W. Harper, A. J. Ginger, L. C. 
Wilmoth. Ivy Prescott, L. E. Hanson, N. W. 
Wallis, Ivy Prescott, T. J. Maudlin, L. E. 
Hanson, Ivy Prescott, McHenry Smith, J. W. 
Fee, L. E. Hanson, and C. G. Titsworth. 

Oswego Post, No. 1 50. was organized Jan- 
uary 10, 1883, and has had the following 
commanders: John F. Hill, D. H. David, E. 
B. Baldwin, George P. Hall, J. C. Patterson, 
H. C. Cook. \V. L. Burch. R. W Wright, Otis 
Whitnev, B. F. Richards, G. W. Hendricks, 



Colin Hodge, N. Sanford. H. E. Fuller, J. 
Garten, and G. W. Mathews. A soldiers' re- 
union was hcid in Oswego in the fall of 1900, 
imder the patronage of this post. 

Topping Post, No. 268, is located at Alta- 
mont, and was organized September 8, 1883. 
Commanders : Daniel Reid, Ezra Bonebrake, 
J. C. Murphy, J. J. Miles, A. H. Waite, R. A. 
Davis, J. F. HuiTman, T. J. Hmi. and T. H. 
Murray. It has a membership of 22, and has 
lost three by death. 

Knoxville Post, No. 458, was organized in 
the Hawkins schoolhouse near Trenton, May 
18, 1883, and was numbered 167. Col. E. B. 
Baldwin was the first commander. Its charter 

members embraced most of the old soldiers and 
in the southwestern portion of the county, and 
they were among the most substantial and 
prominent citizens. After Edna was started, 
the post was removed to that town, and a re- 
organization was effected. A new charter, 
No. 458, was issued to it, dated February 9, 
1889. The building in which the post held its 
meetings was burned in February, 1890, and 
many of its effects, including its charter, were 
consumed. A full list of post commanders has 
not been secured, but among the incumbents 
of that office have been Col. E. B. Baldwin S. 
W. McMahan, J. M. Edmonson, and W. J. 






On August 6, 1868, Charles Van Alstine 
killed J. C. Wheeler, near a saloon in Oswe- 
go, in which they had been drinking. Van 
Alstine was tried and convicted of murder, 
and sent to the penitentiary. This was the 
first murder trial in the county. 

In the latter part of 1868 a half-breed In- 
dian was intoxicated and making a disturbance 
on the streets of Chetopa. He was arrested by 
an officer, who asked him where he got his 
whisky; he told the officer if he would go with 
him he would show him. He went to a shanty 
on the outskirts of town, opened a door, and 
stooping down to his saddle-bags took there- 
from a revolver, saying, "That is where I got 
my whisky," and fired, the ball striking the 
officer on the forehead, but glancing instead of 
penetrating the skull. The Indian was again 
arrested, and taken before the justice. A some- 
what rough character called Bob Broadus told 
him he would be killed, and, if he had an op- 
portunity, to run. The Indian soon started off, 
and was at once fired upon by a number of par- 
ties and killed. 

In 1870 John D. Coulter was postmaster 
at Oswego, and also agent of all the express 
companies that did business at that place. In 
the latter part of November of that year, with- 
out giving notice of his intention so to do, he 
left town, and was never seen here thereafter. 
He proved to be a defaulter to the Government 
and also the express companies in the sum of 
several hundred dollars. 

Anthony Amend and John Pierce, living in 
Neosho township, had a difficulty over a child. 
Pierce shot and killed Amend, and then at- 
tempted to hide in the woods and tall grass. 
The grass was set on fire, and to escape, 
Pierce jumped into the Neosha and swam 
across. He was caught and taken to Jackson- 
ville, where a vigilance committee hung him. 
This hanging took place in Neosho county. 
Several parties were arrested as being con- 
nected with it, but no one was ever convicted. 

On October 3, 1874, on the fair grounds 
at Oswego, John Bagby stabbed William Hog- 
sett and Charles H. Westfall, both of whom 
were special police. Hogsett soon died, while 
Westfall, after a protracted confinement, re- 
covered. Bagby was sent to the penitentiarv. 

On November 2, 1870, Erastus E. and Lis- 
ton P. Hopkins killed their brother-in-law, 
John M. May, by beating and wounding him 
with poles and clubs. In June, 1871, they 
were tried for this offense. The State was 
represented by Judge D. P. Lowe, M. V. Voss, 
and Jesse C. Harper, together with the county 
attorney. The defense was principally con- 
ducted by M. V. B. Bennett and J. D. Gam- 
ble. The defendants were convicted of mur- 
der in the second degree, after a protracted 
trial. A notable incident of this trial was in 
reference to the court driving a witness named 
Chas. H. Butts from the witness stand dur- 
ing the giving of his testimony. It appears by 
the testimonv of Butts that he was a detective. 



and had been placed in the jail with the Hop- 
kins brothers under the pretense of being guilty 
of some kind of a crime, for the real purpose 
'of getting admissions from them to be of use 
on the trial. On these facts appearing, the 
presiding judge said that such a person was 
unworthy of credit, and should not be allowed 
to give testimony in his court ; he was directed 
to leave the stand, which he did. 

On February 24, 1871, John Clark was 
killed at Chetopa by Frank Huber. Huber was 
tried, and convicted of murder in the first de- 
gree, and sentenced to be hung on September 
1st; on August 31st a respite was granted un- 
til September 30th. Huber had been taken to 
Fort Scott after his trial for more safe confine- 
ment until the time of his execution. The last 
of August he was brought from Fort Scott to 
Oswego, where a gallows had been erected in 
front of the old jail, and where on the morrow 
he was to be hung. After the respite arrived, 
and before the time of his execution, as then 
fixed, the Supreme Court granted him a new 
trial because of a defect in the form of the ver- 
dict. Preferring not to undergo the excite- 
ment of another trial, Huber succeeded in re- 
moving some of the stones and other rubbish 
that separated him from the outside world, 
and on the night of November 23, 1871, made 
his escape from the county jail, since which 
time he has' never been heard of at this place. 
His case was the nearest we have ever been to 
having a legal execution in this county. 

On August 14, 1872, B. W. Harwood had 
a difficulty with the Blye brothers, and was 
very badly beaten and bruised by them. Later 
in the day he went to their home and fired into 
a crowd of people that were there assembled, 
slightly wounding two persons. On the 15th 
he was arrested, and gave bond for his appear- 
ance at trial. On the morning of August i6th 

he was found on his premises, riddled with 
bullets. Three of the Blye brothers and a 
number of neighbors were arrested and tried 
for the murder. While people generally had no 
doubt about their guilt, the State failed to pro- 
duce sufficient evidence to convict, and the de- 
fendants were all acquitted. 

On May 27, 1875, R. B. Myers absconded. 
It appeared from e:iamination made that for 
months he had been embezzling from the 
Adams Express Company, for whom he was 
agent. A statement was made by the general 
manager to the effect that as far back as Decem- 
ber previous he had been detected in defalca- 
tion. In the fall of 1879 he was brought back 
from the west, where he was found, on requisi- 
tion, and on examination was bound over to 
court. In proceedings pending the trial, it was 
developed that the company was defectively 
organized, its charter being imperfect; and 
there being no law punishing embezzlement 
by an agent of a joint-stock company, Myers 
was permitted to go at liberty. 

On April i, 1878, while Milton Engler and 
Samuel Clevinger were going to their homes in 
Cherokee county from Chetopa in a state of 
intoxication, they got into a quarrel ; the former 
stabbed the latter with a knife, from the effects 
of which he soon died. 

On Sunday morning, August 25, 1878 R. 
H. Clift, who was marshal of Chetopa, was shot 
and killed near town by John Richmond, a 
horse thief whom he was attempting to arrest. 
Richmond had passed through town a few days 
before with a stolen mule in his possession and 
was now returning to Missouri. Word having 
come that he was guilty of stealing the mule, 
parties in town who had seen him pass through 
informed the marshal of the circumstances, 
and he immediately started in pursuit. He 
soon overtijok Richmond and 1 rdered him to 


stop, telling him that he was under arrest. Rich- 
mond repHed that he would return with him, 
but at once drew a revolver and shot Clift 
through the neck ; he died that night. On the 
Wednesday following the Sunday on which 
Clift was shot, Richmond, having readied his 
home in Missouri near the village of White 
Hall, in Laurence county, was there arrested 
for stealing the mule at a camp meeting. The 
next morning, August 29th, he was being taken 
to Mount Vernon, when Bently came up and 
informed the officers that Richmond was guilty 
of ttie murder of Clift. This was the first that 
the shooting of Clift was known at the home of 
Richmond. Richmond was taken to Mount 
Vernon, where he was held until Bently could 
get a requisition, and as soon as the same could 
be obtained Bently and United States Deputy 
Marshal Graham secured his delivery to them, 
and at once started with him for this county. In- 
stead of taking the train at Carthage to Oswe- 
go, they decided to go the route through the In- 
dian Territory, transferring to the M., K. & T. 
Ry. at Vinita. They arrived at Chetopa on the 
midnight train Thursday night, September 5th. 
Masked men appeared in the train as soon as 
it stopped at Chetopa, and compelled the officers 
to take Richmond out; they took him out and 
preceded to get into a 'bus. The mob sur- 
rounded the 'bus and train, took Richmond 
from the officers, marched him a mile south- 
west of town, and strung him up to an old 
bridge, where he was left hanging until- the 
next afternoon. The cold blooded murder of 
Richmond was without excuse. His crime was 
a terrible one, but there would have been no 
■difficulty in convicting and punishing him for it. 
No one except the participants know who were 
the criminals engaged in the second murder, 
and no effort was made to apprehend or punish 

One of the most brutal murders ever com- 
mitted took place in Canada township, about 
the last of October, 1878. Theodore Munster- 
man and William Hunt some time previous 
thereto had had difficulty over the entry of a 
claim. On the day of the murder Hunt and 
his wife had been to Oswego, and during their 
absence Munsterman had been seen around the 
premises. On their way home from Oswego, 
Hunt overtook Munsterman going in the direc- 
tion of their home. He got in and rode with 
them. It was late in the evening when they ar- 
rived home. Hunt and Munsterman talked 
over their previous difficulty, and agreed to 
bury all differences. Munsterman was making 
his home with his sister several miles away, 
and it was suggested that he stay all night 
with Hunt. They had but one bed and they 
made a pallet for him upon the floor in the 
same room in which they slept. During the 
night Mrs. Hunt awoke and found Munster- 
man at their bedside bending over her; she 
asked him what he wanted ; he said he wanted 
to kiss her. Later in the night Munsterman 
got up and shot both Mr. and Mrs. Hunt in the 
head. Hunt was evidently killed at once. 
Probably Mrs. Hunt made some move, and to 
finish the job Munsterman took a hatchet and 
broke in her skull. He left them both in bed 
where they had slept, went out, locked the door, 
and took Hunt's team and moved off. He was 
seen the next day with the team, which he said 
he had borrowed and was going to the Ter- 
ritory for coal. It turned out that he took the 
team and hitched it in a ravine, and himself 
went to Chetopa. That e\-ening one of the 
neighbor boys went to the house, but could not 
get in. He heard a groaning inside, and went 
and told his inother. Several of the neighbors 
were aroused and came to the house and broke 
open the door. They found Hunt dead, and 



Mrs. Hunt unable to speak and nearly dead. 
Munsterman was found, and at once arrested 
on suspicion that he had committed the mur- 
der. His account of having the team and of 
his whereabouts was entirely unsatisfactory, 
and he was placed in the county jail. By the 
time of the next term of court, when the case 
came up on trial, Mrs. Hunt had so far recov- 
ered as to be able to talk. She came upon the 
witness stand and identified Munsterman as 
the murderer, giving the story of the transac- 
tion substantially as here recorded. Munster- 
man was convicted of murder in the first de- 
gree. He died in the penitentiary, November 
25, 1888. 

On November 3, 1879, an obstruction in 
the shape of a hand-car, with old irons and 
other material, was placed on the Frisco Ry.. 
near Big Hill station. A detective was em- 
ployed to ascertain the guilty parties, and there- 
after Albert C. ToUiver was arrested for the 
offense. Tolliver made confession and impli- 
cated James Henry Barnes, Sr., and his son in 
the crime. The old man Barnes was not 
found, but the younger Barnes was tried, and, 
by what is believed to be the most successfully 
planned and carried out conspiracy for perjury 
ever attempted in this court, participated in 
by a large number of his friends and neighbors, 
was acc[uitted. 

On December 2, 1879, Ouincy Harri-. was 
arrested for operating an illicit distillery on 
Hackberry Creek, and John and Josiah Johr.- 
son for assisting by furnishing corn. Harris 
was taken in charge by the U. S. marshal. 

On July 10, 1880, Daniel Tucker killed a 
colored man named William Dudley, near 
Mound Valley. Tucker had been lying around 
Chetopa for several days, and hired Dudley to 
take him to Neodesha with his team, on the 
pretense that he desired to bring back a load of 

goods. On Sunday, July nth, parties pass- 
ing west of Mound Valley saw where some one 
had encamped the night before, and noticed 
clots of blood and other evidences of a hard 
struggle. Physicians were called, and after ex- 
amination pronounced the bloud and brains 
found to be those of a human being. That even- 
ing some one found the body of a colored man 
in a ravine some three miles away, and parties 
immediately started out to find the murderer. 
They soon found a wagon witli a man and 
woman in it and the team was identified as 
the one which had encamped the night liefore 
where the body was found. . The man was ar- 
rested and proved to be Tucker, the murderer 
of the colored man, William Dudley. He was 
convicted of murder in the first degree. 

On March 4, 1881, on a south-bound pas- 
senger train on the M. K. & T. Ry., just as it 
was leaving Chetopa, James Hayden, who was 
from Lebanon, Ky., and a passenger on the 
train, commenced firing his revolver promiscu- 
ously among the passengers. He shot and 
killed William Lewis, of McAlister, I. T., and 
wounded two others. He was at once arrested 
and taken from the train and lodged in jail. 
Soon thereafter, it being supposed that he was 
insane, an inquisition was held, in which it was 
determined that he was of unsound mind. His 
friends came from Kentucky and took him 
home. The shooting was caused by his sup- 
posing that he was in danger of his life from 
the Indians, as he was nearing the Indian Ter- 

On September 27, 1884, John Douglas 
killed Harry Fox, at his home in Canada town- 
ship. Douglas escaped and went to Ohio, from 
whence he was brought back a year after, and 
on trial was convicted. 

At the May, 1885. term of the district 
court. Frank P. Mvres was tried and convicted 



of stealing a span of mules. On his applica- 
tion he was granted a new trial. On the night 
of July 7, 1885, Winfield Scott Grouse, who 
was a prisoner in the county jail charged with 
murder, J. J. Thompson, with liquor selling, 
and a colored man, Mat Lingo, with assault 
and battery, broke jail and compelled Myres 
to go with them. The latter, however, did 
not leave town, but next morning returned 
and gave himself up. On the ni"ght of July 
25th Myres with others broke jail again, but 
he was soon found, at Vinita, and was re- 
turned to jail on the 28th. On the night of 
August 4th Myres was taken from jail. To 
secure his escape from jail, five locks had to 
be broken or unlocked. The next morning the 
locks were all found fastened and in good or- 
der. How the doors were opened is an un- 
solved mystery. On August 6th Myres's body 
was found in the Neosho River, just above 
the Osv/ego dam. 

During Myres's imprisonment Jacob Mc- 
Laughlin and Wash Berkaw were part of the 
time confined in jail with him on the charge 
of selling liquor. It is supposed that they 
feared testimony which Myres might give if 
called as a witness on their trial, and that they, 
after their release on bail, secured Myres and 
took him from the jail on the 4th of August. 
On April 14, 1886, McLaughlin and Berkaw 
were arrested for the murder of Myres, On 
their examination Frank and George Davis, 
who were also confined in the jail at the time 
when Myres was taken therefrom, testified that 
McLaughlin, with the assistance of Berkaw, 
took Myres from the jail. The defendants 
were both held to answer the charge of mur- 
der. On the trial of McLaughlin and Berkaw 
on the charge of murder in the district court, 
the Davis boys gave testimony directly con- 
trary to what they had testified nn the prelimi- 

nary examination, and said that what they 
had testified to before was false. It was 
developed on the trial that after the pre- 
liminary examination had been had, the Davis 
boys went to the office of E. G. Ward 
in Parsons, who was attorney for McLaughlin 
and Berkaw, where it was arranged between 
them that in the event of their giving testi- 
mony of the character which they did give 
upon the final trial, they should receive a cer- 
tain sum of money. The money was deposited 
in bank, subject to their order upon the final 
acquittal of the defendants. The defendants 
were acquitted on the trial, although probably 
no one had any doubt of their real guilt. 

At the close of the trial the court appointed 
a committee to investigate the conduct of E. 
G. Ward in connection with this transaction. 
The committee in the report found that he 
had been guilty of bribery, and recommended 
that he be disbarred. Gharges were preferred 
against him, and change of venue was had 
upon his application to the district court of 
Neosho county, where he was tried and found 
guilty, and a judgment of disbarment was 

On the night of February 21, 1885, Mar- 
cus A. Justice and Mayfield Garr, two colored 
men who had had some jealous feeling in ref- 
erence to a woman, were in company near the 
M. K. & T. depot at Oswego. The next morn- 
ing Garr was found dead in the cut of the 
Frisco Ry. between the M. K. & T. and the 
brick mill. Justice was charged with the mur- 
der, and on trial had on May 2^, 1885, was 
convicted of murder in the first degree. 

On November 16, 1885, George W. Greg- 
son shot and killed W. A. Gollins, in the Grand 
Gentral Hotel at Parsons. On February 19, 
1886, he was convicted of murder in the first 



In September, 1886, Wilf. Cooper got up- 
on a freight train at Parsons to ride to his 
home at Labette City. There were some three 
or four other parties in the car, who proved 
to be tramps. Before arriving at Labette City 
they attacked Cooper and threw him out of the 
car. He recovered himself sufficiently to get 
to Labette City and telegraph to Oswego for 
the arrest of the parties, who were tried, con- 
victed and sent to the penitentiary. 

On June 26, 1888, the marshal at Chetopa 
had a warrant for the arrest of a colored man 
who was supposed to be engaged in the illegal 
sale of liquor, and who had made his boast 
that no officer could arrest him. The marshal 
called a man to his aid, and started to serve the 
warrant. Another colored man had allied him- 
self with the one they were seeking to arrest, 
and, seeing one of the officers coming, one of 
them secreted himself behind the building, and 
the other from across the street leveled his 
gun at the officer. Both opened fire on the 
officers, and wounded them in a number of 
places in a way that was at the time supposed 
would prove fatal. The colored men ran at 
once, and secreted themselves in the loft of an 
old house. It was ascertained that they were 
in the house, and finding themselves hemmed 
in, they surrendered. The mayor put them 
under guard and sent for the sheriflf, who ar- 
rived at Chetopa in the evening. It was not 
thought advisable to bring them to the county 
jail in the night-time. In the meantime the 
guard which had been placed over them was 
continued. They were placed in the city hall, 
the sheriff and guard remaining with them. 
A mob of masked men broke into the room, 
put a revolver in the face of the sheriff and 
guard, blew out the light, slipped a noose over 
the head of each of the prisoners, dragged 
them to the rear end of the building, put them 

on a scaffold which had been piled upon a 
wagon standing by the side of the building, 
fastened the rope inside, and then drew the 
wagon from under them, where they were left 
to hang until the next morning. No serious at- 
tempt was ever made to discover the murderers 
of these men, and no prosecution for the crime 
was ever instituted. 

On April i, 1890, Carrey S. Arnold killed 
John Bobzien, in the west part of the county, 
for which he was afterwards tried and con- 

On October 22, 1892, William H. Mills, 
while sitting in a restaurant at Chetopa, was 
shot through the head by some party on the 
outside of the building, and instantly killed. 
G. A. Luman was arrested on suspicion, but 
was acquitted. 

On December 17, 1892, Albert Shoemaker 
shot and killed his brother Allen. He claimed 
that the killing was in self-defense. His trial 
resulted in his acquittal. 

There has been but one successful "hold- 
up" and robbery of a railroad train in this 
county. The passenger train going east over 
the St. Louis & San Francisco Railroad was 
boarded at Mound Valley about 3 o'clock on 
the morning of September 3, 1893, by three 
men, two of whom at first took control of the 
express car and engine, and one the passenger 
coach. In the conflict that ensued Charles A. 
Chapman, the express messenger, was killed, 
and his body fell from the train. The rob- 
bers were unable to open the express safe, and 
secured nothing in that direction. All the pas- 
sengers were relieved of such money, jewelry 
and valuables as they had about their per- 
sons. Before the close of the year the robbers 
were all captured, a party connected with them 
revealing their identity and their whereabouts. 
They proved to be Hance D. Hydrick, Claude 



Shepherd and WilHam Chadburn. The evi- 
dence of their guik secured b}- the officers 
was so convincing that they all plead guilty 
and were sent to the penitentiary. 

On January 28, 1896, Mrs. Maria A. Ash- 
bell was found dead in the cellar of her house 
in Richland township, this county, with a bul- 
let-hole through her head and a revolver lying 
by her side. Her husband, Marion Ashbell, 
was arrested on the charge of having mur- 
dered her. His defense was based on the con- 
tention that her death was the result of sui- 
cide. Court convened a few days after the 
killing, and Mr. Ashbell was forced into trial 
at that term of court over his strong protest. 
The most intense feeling prevailed throughout 
the county, and threats of lynching the pris- 
oner were heard on several occasions. The 
trial lasted several days, and the jury, after 
being out a few hours, brought in a verdict 
of guilty of murder in the first degree; this 
was on February 29, 1896. Two days after 
this sentence was pronounced, and on March 
3d the prisoner was lodged in the penitentiary. 
Every efifort was made to secure a reversal 
of this judgment and a new trial, but without 
effect. The case went to the Supreme Court 
at least three times. 

In the fall of 1896 Rudolph Brockman, 
living in the northwestern part of the county, 
was arrested for the murder of his little girl. 
It appeared that he kept her in the barn, where 
for some time she lay sick and was supplied 
with none of the comforts which her condition 
demanded. From the evidence, the treatment 
certainly seemed most brutal and, no doubt, 
was the cause of the child's death, which oc- 
curred about the time, or soon after, his ar- 
rest. He was found guilty of murder in the 
first degree, and sentence was passed in ac- 
cnrdance with the verdict. 


About the last of 1870 a family of Hol- 
landers, or Germans, consisting 'of four per- 
sons — a man, his wife, son and daughter — 
moved on the northeast quarter of section 13, 
township 31, range 17, Osage township. The 
man was known as William Bender, the son 
and daughter as John and Kate. They erected 
a small frame house, 16 by 24 feet, which 
was divided into two parts by studding, on 
which hung an old wagon-sheet for a parti- 
tion. In the front part they had a few articles 
for sale, such as tobacco, crackers, sardines, 
candies, powder, and shot. Just outside the 
door was a plain sign, "Groceries." In the 
front room were also two beds. They also 
pretended to furnish lunch and entertainment 
for travelers. In the back room, almost up 
against the partition studding, a hole just large 
enough to let a man down had been cut in the 
floor,. the door to which raised with a leather 
strap. Under this an excavation had been 
made in the ground, leaving a hole some six 
or seven feet in diameter and about the same 
in depth. It was supposed that when a victim 
was killed in the daytime he was thrown into 
this hole until night, when he would be taken 
out and buried. Little was known of the fam- 
ily generally. They repelled rather than in- 
vited communication with their neighbors. 
Kate traveled over the county somewhat, giv- 
ing spiritualistic lectures and like entertain- 
ments, but created very little stir or comment. 
The two young people occasionally went to 
church and 'singing-school, and the men fre- 
quently attended public meetings in the town- 
ship. The place was on the road, as then trav- 
eled, from Osage Mission to Independence. 
During 1871 and 1872 several parties had trav- 
eled the road, making inquiries for persons 



who were missing, who had last been heard 
from at Fort Scott or Independence. About 
March lo, 1873, a public meeting was held 
at Harmony Grove school-house, in district 
No. 30, to discuss the herd law. The matter 
of so many people being missing, and the fact 
that suspicion rested upon the people of Osage 
township, were spoken of. It was said a vig- 
orous search should be made, under the sanc- 
tion of a search warrant. Both of the Benders 
were present. Father Dick said, "Commence 
the search at my house," and father Dienst 
responded, "Yes, and go directly from there 
to my house." Old man Bender, who sat be- 
tween them, made no reply. About the ist 
of March, 1873, Dr. William York had left 
his home on Onion Creek, in Montgomery 
county, in search of a man and child by the 
name of Loucher, who had left Independence 
for Iowa during the previous winter and had 
never thereafter been heard of by their friends. 
Dr. York reached Fort Scott, and started to 
return about March 8th, but never reached 
home. In the fore part of April, Colonel A. 
M. York, with some fifty citizens from Mont- 
gomery county, started from Independence to 
make a thorough search for his brother. They 
went as far as Fort Scott, but could get no 
clue to the missing man. On their return they 
visited the Bender place and tried to induce 
Kate, who professed to be a clairvoyant, to 
make an effort to help discover the Doctor. 
But Kate was able to successfully elude their 
efforts without throwing any suspicion on her- 
self. That night the Bender family left their 
place, went to Thayer, where they purchased 
tickets to Humboldt, and took the north-bound 
train at 5 o'clock on the following morning. 
A day or two thereafter their team was found 
hitched a short distance from Thayer, and ap- 
parently nearly starved. It was about the ist 

of Alay that a party passing the Bender place 
noticed the stock wandering around as though 
wanting care. On going to the stable he found 
the team gone, and a calf dead in a pen, evi- 
dently having starved to death. He then went 
to the house, but found no one there. He no- 
tified the township trustee, who, with other 
parties, went to the premises and broke into 
the house, where they found nearly everything 
in usual order, little if anything aside from 
clothing and bed-clothing having been taken. 
A sickening stench almost drove them from 
the house. The trap-door in the back room 
was raised, and it was discovered that in the 
hole beneath was clotted blood which pro- 
duced the stench. The house was removed 
from where it stood, but nothing further was 
found under it. In a garden near by a de- 
pression was noticed, and upon digging down 
the body of Dr. York was found buried, head 
downward, his feet being scarcely covered. 
His skull was smashed in, and his throat cut 
from ear to ear. On farther search seven more 
bodies were found, all of whom, except one, 
were afterwards identified by their friends, 
viz. ; Loucher and his little girl, seven or eight 
years old, buried in one hole; \\'illiam Boyle, 
McCratty, Brown, and McKenzie. The other 
body was never identified. It is altogether 
probable that other parties were murdered, 
whose bodies were never found. 

From the victims the Benders seemed to 
have procured, as far as it was afterwards as- 
certained, about the following money and 
property: From Boyle, $1,900; from i\Ic- 
Cratty, $2,600; from Brown, ^^y, a team of 
horses and a wagon ; from McKenzie, forty 
cents; from Loucher, $38 and a good team 
and wagon; from Dr. York, $10, a pony 
and saddle. A part of the property which 
they had disposed of was afterwards recog- 



nized and restored to the friends of the mur- 
dered men. Those who attempted to follow 
the Benders became satisfied of the following 
facts: They took the train at Thayer and all 
went as far as Chanute, where John and Kate 
got off and took the M. K. & T. train south, 
on which they went to Red River, in the In- 
dian Territory, which was then the terminus 
of the road. Here they were subsequently 
joined by the old folks, who seemed to have 
gone to St. Louis after John and Kate left 
them at Chanute. Detectives thought they 
were able to trace their wanderings through 
Texas and New Mexico. Parties supposed to 
be the Benders were apprehended in many 
parts of the country, and several were brought 
back to this county for identification, who 
proved to have little if any resemblance to this 
butcher gang. Two women, supposed to be 
the old woman and Kate, were arrested in 
Michigan in 1890, and brought to this county 
on requisition. On habeas corpus proceedings 
they were released, the court being satisfied that 
they were not the Benders. However, some 
parties who were well acquainted with the 
Bender family still assert that these were the 
real Bender women. Several parties who lived 
near the Benders were supposed to be impli- 
cated with them in their crimes, and some of 
them were arrested, but upon examination they 
were discharged, there not being sufficient evi- 
dence to hold them for trial. One or two of 
those thus arrested brought suit for false im- 
prisonment, and obtained a verdict for a small 
amount of damages. 


Members of this organization claim that it 
was formed at Luray, Clark county, Missouri, 
in September, 1863, by persons living along the 

borders of Iowa and Missouri, to protect them- 
selves from horse stealing and other crimes, 
and that from there the organization spread 
to other parts, and among them to Kansas. I 
am not interested in tracing its origin, but as 
a matter of public history it should probably 
be said that on one or two occasions they have 
made something of a stir in our county. 

In August, 1872, a secret organization of 
many of the citizens in the western part of the 
county attempted to relieve the county of the 
presence of a few parties who were then re- 
siding there, among them William M. Rogers, 
John Kramer, W. D. McBride, and W. H. 
Carpenter. These parties were visited at night 
by masked men and warned to leave the coun- 
ty within a limited time. Some of them for 
a time disappeared in answer to this, but it was 
not long until the better-thinking portion of 
the communit}' made its sentiments felt, and 
the proposition to have men's rights to live 
there determined by a secret council was shown 
to be too unpopular to succeed. It was deemed 
best to allow people who were charged with 
objectionable practices to have a fair chance 
for vindicating themselves before any sum- 
mary proceedings were taken to require them 
to disappear. 

On September 9, 1874, delegates from this 
and several adjoining counties met at Stover 
school-house, in Fairview township, in grand 
council. The names of several of our promi- 
nent citizens, and some of them among the 
most respectable and conservative, were con- 
nected with this meeting, and with the organi- 
zation as then perfected. The business of the 
meeting was of course secret, but, a series of 
resolutions was passed and given to the papers 
for publication. The tone of these resolutions 
indicates that the organization was assuming 
prerogatives which did not belong to any pri- 



vate organization, whether open or secret. It 
is quite Hkely that the organization has ac- 
complished some good as an aid to the civil 
officers in taking up and driving from our 
borders bands of men engaged in larceny and 
other illegal transactions, and possibly for these 
services some of its utterances may be over- 
looked which cannot be justified. 

There have been a number of instances in 
the history of the county in which sotne of 
these secret organizations have played quite a 
conspicuous part in the settlement of criminal 
transactions, the facts in reference to which 
I have not within my control, and therefore 
in reference to them I will not attempt to speak ; 
but it may be said that this county has proba- 
bly been as free from transactions which can 
not claim the sanction of law as has any coun- 
ty in a new State. 

In 1879 there were various local organi- 
zations formed for the purpose of aiding each 
other in resisting payment of what they claimed 
to be illegal obligations. Their contention was 
that they had made loans through loan agents 
representing Eastern capitalists, and that as 
the loan was not made until the application 

was received in New York and accepted by the 
money-lenders there, and the notes were made 
payable in New York, it became a New York 
contract; and as the notes bore a rate of in- 
terest greater than was allowed by the law 
of New York, they were absolutely void under 
those laws. They received some encourage- 
ment in the way of legal counsel in the position 
they had taken, and some few efforts were 
made to defeat actions which were commenced 
for the collection of these notes. But the 
move was not as popular with the mass of the 
people as the leaders in it supposed it would 
be, and never resulted in anything more than 
expense to those engaged in it. A county 
organization was formed early in its history, 
of which J. B. Graham, of Jacksonville, was 
president; A. J. Robertson, of Oswego, vice- 
president; J. A. Robeson, of Ripon, secretary; 
J. W. Breidenthal, of Ripon, corresponding 
secretary; J. O. McKee, of Parsons, treasurer; 
T. P. Lane, of Labette City, marshal. These 
names are given as published at the time in the 
county papers. It is probable that the object of 
the organization was somewhat broader than 
here stated, but it was short hved, and is only 
mentioned as one of the incidents showing the 
tendency of public opinion on matters of finance 
and political economy. 


In every community during a course of 
years, there are more or less occurrences which 
are generally regarded as misfortunes, some 
of which are the results of accidents and some 
of carelessness or mismanagement. Of these 
there have been quite a number in the history 
of the county. A few of these have either 
come under my own observation, or the knowl- 
edge of them has come to me while searching 
for facts on other subjects. I have made no 
effort to obtain this class of facts, but think 
it will not be out of place to mention a few of 
those about which I have learned. 

On August 31, 1868, C. A. Kelso and Au- 
gustus Melvin, while crossing the Neosho in 
a skiff above the mill-dam at Oswego, ran into 
a drift which carried them over the dam; Mr. 
Kelso succeeded in getting to shore, but Mr. 
Melvin was drowned. 

On September 18, 1869, the boiler to the 
sawmill engine located on Big Hill Creek, in 
Osage township, burst, and killed Messrs. 
Waymire and Worley, two of the proprietors. 
On April 20, 1870, Wm. Patterson and 
Henry Bodine were examining a revolver in 
a street near the Oswego House. The revol- 
ver was accidentally discharged by Mr. Pat- 
terson and Mr. Bodine was instantly killed. 
The deceased was at the time under-sheriff, 
and his death caused a good deal of annoyance 

in reference to official papers, as well as trou- 
ble to his family. 

In June, 1870, some parties came to the 
office of Dr. J. H. Lane, in Elston, in the night- 
time, and desired him to go several miles in 
the country to see a sick child. He lighted a 
lamp to dress by, but it was almost at once 
blown out, either by a gust of wind or by the 
parties in the room. He became unconscious. 
The last that he remembered in reference to 
this transaction was that he was on his horse 
going somewhere — he knew not where. When 
he awoke to consciousness again he found him- 
self in Missouri, and learned that several weeks' 
time had elapsed since he left his home. When 
he left he had quite a large sum of money 
on his person, most of which was gone when 
he found himself in Missouri. He was never 
able to give any account of the cause for his 
loss of consciousness, nor to intelligently trace 
his wanderings. 

Only a week or two after the mysterious 
disappearance of Dr. Lane, the county sur- 
veyor, E. G. Davidson, living near Dayton- 
ville, mysteriously disappeared, and some time 
thereafter found himself in Oregon. He was 
never able to give any more satisfactory ac- 
count of his trip than was Dr. Lane of his. 
After an absence of a few months Mr. David- 
son and Dr. Lane both returned to their homes. 



In the summer of 187 1, old Mr. Hart with 
his little daughter were attempting to cross 
Pumpkin Creek, at Duncan's ford; the creek 
was very high, but so strong was Hart's be- 
lief that he would not die until the second 
coming of Christ that he drove in, and he and 
his daughter, as well as the team, were 

In the fall of 1871 two children of Wm. 
Chatfield, in the north part of Mount Pleas- 
ant township, were burned to death. While 
the parents were both away from home, the 
boys, aged about four and six years, got some 
matches and were playing prairie fire. The 
mother, who was at a neighbor's, saw the fire, 
and started home. The children got into a hen- 
house built of hay, and shu^the door; the fire 
■caught into this, and in spite of the mother's 
«fiforts the children were burned beyond rec- 
ognition before they could be rescued. 

On March 13, 1872, C. B. Pratt, postm-as- 
ter at Ripon, was found dead in the road be- 
tween his home and Chetopa, he having fallen 
from his wagon and been run over by one of 
the wheels. 

In May, 1878, a family came into Oswego 
and located in the east part of town, and al- 
most immediately a part of the family broke 
•out with small-pox; several members died of 
the. disease. 

About the middle of December, 1880, while 
Richard Sloan was painting the Frisco House, 
at Oswego, he fell from the scafifold and was 

In April, 1881, Alexander Bishop lost a 
number of head of stock from hydrophobia, 
and a few months after that some 23 head near 
Edna had to be killed on account of the same 

In the summer of 188 1 quite a large num- 

ber of cattle in different parts of the county 
died from hydrophobia. 

On September 20, 1881, the boiler of a 
locomotive on the M. K. & T. Ry. exploded 
near the residence of Ben Roberts, and killed 
the engineer and fireman and also two other 
engineers who were running with them, and 
tore the freight train almost to pieces. 

On December 12, 1881. while W. P. Wil- 
son and his son Thomas J. were crossing Pump- 
kin Creek, the water in which was then very 
high, their wagon capsized and young Mr. 
Wilson was drowned. 

On May 13, 1882, a locomotive on the 
M. K. & T. Ry., while stopping at Oswego, 
by some means got started while both the en- 
gineer and fireman were in the depot getting 
orders. It ran a mile or two north, where it 
collided with a passenger train and smashed 
both engines, but killed no one. 

On July 24, 1883, Edgar Stonecipher, a 
little son of Mrs. Sallie J. Stonecipher, died of 
hydrophobia. A little play dog had a few 
days before that made a scratch on his hand, 
which was not at the time thought sufficient 
to be at all dangerous, but from its effects the 
boy died. 

During the high water of June and July, 
1885, travel over the Labette bottom above 
Parsons had to be by boat. On July 2d Mas- 
ter Mechanic W. E. Phillips, having Chester 
Jones and T. Fox in the boat with him, was 
drawn into a current, and all were drowned. 
In July, 1886, the boiler of the National 
Mills, at Parsons, exploded, and caused a great 
destruction of property. 

In July, 1886, a family of movers stopped 
just before crossing the bridge north of Os- 
wego, and for some cause their team com- 
menced backing, and backed the wagon oflf the 



bluff to the right. The mother was badly in- 
jured and a little boy had his leg broken. 

In April, 1892, the barn of William Kol- 
lenberger, of Elm Grove township, was struck 
by lightning. Five horses and two cattle were 
killed, and the barn, with its contents of tools, 
grain, etc., was burned. 

Since the foregoing account was' prepared, 
there have been a good many instances of de- 
struction of buildings by storms, by lightning 
and by fire, as well as other accidents to prop- 
erty and to persons. But none has come with- 
in my knowldge which I deem of sufficient 
general interest to separately mention here. 


1865. — Fore part of season pleasant. July 
4th, Neosho higher than has ever been known 
at any time down to 1885. Fall pleasant. 
Stock did well during winter, grazing on river 

1866. — ^Ab'out usual weather up to May. 
June wet; all the streams were overflowing. 
What little crop was planted did well where 
it was not killed by overflow. In September 
the grasshoppers came in great numbers, and 
ate up everything that was green, completely 
filling the earth with their eggs. Fall and 
winter very mild. 

1867. — ^January and February were very 
warm; the leaves were started in February, 
and grasshoppers' eggs were hatching this 
month. March was disagreeable, and colder 
than either of the winter months ; it froze hard, 
and the young grasshoppers were all killed; 
they gave no trouble that season. Crops were 
not planted until the last of April. May and 
June pleasant. Latter part of June and July 
extremely wet; ground too wet to get on it 
with machines; grain had to be cut with cra- 
dles ; streams overflowed. Very dry during the 
fall ; streams got very low. A little cold weath- 
er during December. 

1868. — There was considerable cold weath- 
er during January, the thermometer indicating 
3 or 4 degrees below zero, and the ice on the 
Neosho being six to eight inches thick; the 
cold extended into the fore part of Febru- 

ary. February was milder ; some corn planted 
the last of the month made a good crop. A 
few showers during the fore part of March; 
snow and hail storms about the middle; it 
was a very windy month. Corn was generally 
planted about the first of April; cattle turned 
out to grass about the loth. Several good 
showers during May. June was very dry, 
grass injured ; corn badly damaged by hot and 
dry weather; harvest commenced about the last 
of June. The middle of July the thermometer 
ranged from no to 115. The latter part of 
August was the first time the ground had been 
soaking wet for a year. September, heavy 
rains ; streams overflowed. Wheat sowing took 
place in October. Middle of November the 
ground was frozen. Latter part of November 
and fore part of December severe sleet and 
snow stomi, and the same during the latter 
part of December. 

1869. — January and February were mild 
and wet; the Neosho was over bank; cattle 
did well on the range with little or no feed. 
February 25th was the coldest day of the win- 
ter; thermometer was 5 degrees below zero; 
little snow during the winter. March was 
windy, rainy and disagreeable; cattle turned 
on the range the first of April. Corn mostly 
planted the latter part of April. Plenty of 
garden truck the latter part of May and fore 
part of June; frequent rains during June. 
Wheat harvest commenced the first of July. 


August was dr}' and hot. Plenty of rains 
during the fall. Snow the i6th of No- 
vember, and December loth it fell to the depth 
of fourteen inches. 

1870. — There were several cold days in 
Jamiary, but no extremely cold weather; sev- 
eral slight snows during January and Febru- 
ary. February pleasant. Quite a hard snow 
on the I2th of March; the last of March a 
good rain, which was the first hard rain dur- 
ing the spring. On April i6tli there was a 
hard frost which cut down the corn and pota- 
toes. Wheat harvest commenced about the 
middle of June; latter part of June and fore 
part of July very hot. Latter part of July and 
fore part of August hot and dry; heavy rains 
the latter part of August. The fall very sea- 
sonable. High water during the latter part of 
October. Several inches of snow the latter 
part of December. 

1 87 1. — ^January ist was pleasant; lettuce 
was growing in the gardens large enough to 
eat; January 12th to 15th heavy snow storms; 
extremely cold; snow 15 inches deep. Febru- 
ary 3d a heavy rain, accompanied by wind. 
April 2 1 St heavy frost, which killed grass and 
fruit. Last week of June was very warm; 
thermometer stood at 90 to 104 degrees; wheat 
harvest commenced the ist of June. On the 
1st of July a good rain fell. August and Sep- 
tember were dry. November 13th, the first 
freeze; i8th, first snow. December cold, with 
little snow. 

1872. — January cool, but generally pleas- 
ant; 7th, 14 inches of snow. February ist, 
sleet and snow. March dry, and wheat sufifer- 
ing. Middle of May a good rain ; last of May 
new potatoes were in market. Wheat harvest 
commenced about the 20th of June. Part of 
last half of December very cold. 

1873. — Fore part of January sleet; snow 

and showers during latter part of month. Feb- 
ruary was fine, with showers of rain, and 
snow. Severe hail storms during April; one 
very severe on the 5th: on the 8th it snowed 
and sleeted all day; at night the ground was 
covered with snow to the depth of four inches. 
During May and June there were heavy rains ; 
Neosho River overflowed; harvest commenced 
about the 20th of June. August was very dry. 

1874. — ^January pleasant, little snow or 
cold. Season all that cculd be desired for 
crops up to July. Chinch-bugs work on wheat 
some this year; harvest commenced about June 
loth. July and August extremely hot; corn 
greatly injured ; in August grasshoppers came. 
November i8th a sleet, and first freeze. 

1875. — January was cold, but little snow. 
More snow in Februar}'. Oats sown about the 
loth of March. Corn planting commenced 
about the ist of April, and continued until 
June on account of two crops being eaten ofif 
by the grasshoppers. 

1876.— Opened with a hard rain; no snow 
during January ; weather cold, but not severe. 
No snow in February, and considerable cold 
weather. March 19th, 10 inches of snow on 
the ground, and the weather cold. Year closed 
with a cold spell and hard snow storm. 

1877. — Fore part of January sleet and 
snow and weather somewhat cold, but generally 
the month was pleasant. During February and 
March there was much rain and roads muddy. 
Heavy rains in April and May. The fore part 
of May, Prof. Riley was in the county investi- 
gating grasshoppers ; the eggs were then hatch- 
ing. June 5th to 8th heavy rains and streams 
at high-water mark; houses on bottoms sur- 
rounded with water, corn crop washed out; 
June 28th one of the hardest rains ever known, 
accompanied by wind and hail. This season the 
corn was replanted two and in some instances 



three times. There was plenty of rain during 
July and August. November 8th wind and 
snow. December was wet and muddy; no 
snow during the latter part. 

1878. — January generally wet; roads mud- 
dy; wheat looked fine. February continued 
wet, but generally pleasant. In May the Neo- 
sho River overflowed; boats used for travel 
■on the bottom lands ; many families had to 
leave their homes and go to higher grounds; 
the San Francisco track was washed out; the 
streams were all out of bank. During June it 
rained almost incessantly; the ground too wet 
to harvest with machines ; wheat cutting com- 
menced about the 6th of June; most of it had 
to be cut with cradles ; much of it was lost be- 
cause of inability to get on the ground to har- 
vest. Latter part of July and August were 
dry and hot. No frost until the ist of De- 
cember; about the middle of December heavy 
sleet; December 17th and following, Neosho 
frozen over — ice six to eight inches thick. 

1879. — The first part of January was cold, 
with six inches of snow on the ground; more 
snow during the latter part of the month. 
New potatoes in market about the middle of 
May. Wheat cutting commenced June loth; 
rain during the latter part of June. July and 
fore part of August hot ; some fine rains. Good 
rains about the middle of August. The grass- 
hoppers created a scare in September, but did 
no great amount of damage. The fall was 
■dry and warm; November loth a good rain. 
The year closed with the ground covered with 
ice and snow. 

1880. — January warm; very little ice or 
snow. February, oats were sown and garden 
made. March was colder than January or Feb- 
ruary. April 28th, Prof. John Tice visited 
Oswego and lectured on cyclones; came to 
make scientific investigation on this subject. 

Plenty of rain during May and June; crops 
look well. Summer very .seasonable. Last 
part of August dry. October 7th, six inches 
of snow. November i6th, snowed all day, 
and was snowy and disagreeable until the 20th. 
December 23d, 12 degrees below zero; ice on 
the Neosho six inches thick. 

1881. — Large quantities of ice were taken 
from the river the fore part of January. Feb- 
ruary nth, hard snow storm; 23 degrees be- 
low zero. March, snowy. The summer was 
generally dry and hot. Rains commenced 
about the first of October. November 25th, 
sleet and ice. 

1882. — January warm and muddy during 
the first part of the month, with cold weather 
the last part. February, a good deal of rain 
and little winter. May '12th, sleet and frost. 
Much rain during May and June. Hot wind 
in September. Considerable snow in Decem- 

1883. — First part of January good sleigh- 
ing and cold weather ; January 5th, 20 degrees 
below zero; the month generally cold, with 
plenty of ice and snow. Fore part of Febru- 
ary, a severe storm. The streams were all 
frozen from Christmas of 1882 up to the mid- 
dle of February; generally frozen to the bot- 
tom, so that it was difficult to get water for 
stock; February 14th, ice commenced break- 
ing up ; latter part of February, rained so that 
by the opening of March roads were almost 
impassable. Spring was very cold and back- 
ward. June was very hot; 14th, the streams 
were out of their banks. Good rains during 
July. November 12th. a hard freeze. De- 
cember 3d, five inches of snow, and more 
snow during latter part of the month. 

1884. — January ist, 5 degrees below zero; 
ground covered with snow; January 3d, 15 
to 20 degrees below zero ; January one of the 


most disagreeable months for years. Febru- 
ary was also wet and disagreeable; February 
1 2th, one of the very hardest sleets ever ex- 
perienced in this part of the country; many 
trees broken down. Spring did not really open 
until about the middle of March. May ist, 
river high. Plenty of rain all summer. De- 
cember nth, snow storm; latter half of the 
month cold. 

1885. — First part of January rainy; 23d, 
six inches of snow fell. February mostly cold, 
with considerable snow; March 17th, ground 
covered with snow, weather cold. This year 
was noted for its floods, no less than three oc- 
;curring during the season. Heavy rains dur- 
ing April resulted in all the streams rising al- 
most, if not quite, as high as had ever before 
been known; by the 22d of the month all of 
the bottom lands were submerged and crops 
destroyed ; fences were washed away, and very 
much stock was drowned. On May 8th there 
was a slight freeze, and snow; corn was re- 
planted, and very largely injured by the web- 
worm. In the latter part of June the rain again 
set in, and by the opening of July the bottom 
was a second time entirel}- overflowed, this 
time the water being several inches higher 
than had ever before been known; families had 
to be brought out of the bottom to save them 
from perishing; many hundred acres of wheat 
that had been cut was washed away, and all 
crops that had been planted on the bottom 
lands were ruined; railway tracks in many 
places were entirely under water, and all train; 
were for a time stopped. On the San Francisco 
road, east of Oswego, a train-load of cattle 
was attempting to cross, but was stopped at the 
Neosho River bridge because of its danger- 
ous condition, and before it could back up to 
high ground a large section of embankment 
had become washed away, leaving the train 

standing in the middle of a lake several miles 
in width. An attempt was made to drive out 
a part of the stock; a number of them were 
drowned, and for days feed was shipped to the 
remainder of them in boats. Passengers and 
mail were transported from the east side of the 
river in boats for a number of days ; freight 
shipments were completely blocked. The third 
overflow this season occurred in September, 
and while the water did not reach the height 
of either of the other two, yet all of the bot- 
tom land was inundated, and all crops thereon 
were destroyed. October and November were 
so muddy that farmers could hardly get into 
the fields to gather corn; in the middle of 
November the ground was frozen, and several 
inches of snow. Deceinber 25th, 10 degrees 
below zero. 

1886. — January opened warm; damp and 
a little snow the first few days; several days 
of quite cold weather about the middle of the 
month ; moderate the last half. Quite a snow 
storm the first of February, but the month 
was generally pleasant. March was a cold 
month; several snow storms and little spring 
weather until the last of the month. April 
and May were pleasant and seasonable months 
July was a hot month. December opened and 
closed with cold weather; the thermometer 
standing several degrees below zero most of 
the month. 

1887. — January and February pleasant; 
little snow and no very cold weather. March 
cold and quite a snow at the close of the 
month. July dry and hot. Good rains during 
August. November loth, first freeze; latter 
part of month cold. December moderate and 
little snow. 

1888. — A few cold days during January, 
but most of the month pleasant. February 
somewhat colder. Little spring weather until 


the middle of March ; March 28th, ground cov- 
ered with snow. July very hot; corn dam- 
aged. November loth, the first snow. De- 
cember a little snow; weather generally mod- 

1889. — January quite wet; little cold. Lat- 
ter part of February six inches of snow and 
several cold days. March and fore part of 
April damp and cold. July hot. December a 
very pleasant month. 

1890. — January 7th sleet and snow storm; 
later part of the month and first part of Feb- 
ruary very pleasant. Considerable cold weath- 
er during latter part of February and fore part 
of March. April dry. May i6th, a hard frost 
June and July extremely hot and dry. Good 
rains in August; August 17th, a severe hail 
and electrical storm. September was cold. 
October 27th, the fftst freeze. November wet 
and cold. December 7th, eight inches of ice 
and snow ; latter part of December mild. 

1891. — Fore part of January cold; most of 
the month mild. February wet and very cold. 
March 7th, snow storm. Spring backward. 
June, river banks full. Fall dry and hot. 
Wheat could not be gotten in until latter part 
of October and fore part of November. No- 
vember 1 2th, quite a hard freeze; latter part 
of November and December pleasant and mild. 

1892. — Severe snow during January; little 
weather that was very cold. Middle of March 
quite cold and considerable snow. Spring back- 
ward ; oats not sown until April. Heavy rains 
in May; streams up. Latter part of June wet 
weather interfered with harvesting. August 
and September dry. Wheat generally sown 
about the last of October. November, good 
rains; month pleasant. December generally 
damp, cloudy and chilly, but no very cold 
weather till Christmas evening, when it turned 
cold and so continued for several davs; several 

slight snows during the month, but not enough 
at any time to make sleighing. Year closed 
with very little snow on ground, and ground 
slightly frozen. 

1893. — ^January was dry and cold. Ice, six 
inches or more in thickness, was put up at dif- 
ferent times during the month. Good sleigh- 
ing the middle of the month. During the first 
half of February there were several days of 
good sleighing and ice was in nice condition 
for putting up. While there was some cold 
weather in the last half of the month, most of 
it was pleasant and farmers were busy plowing. 
March ist oats sowing commenced, but was 
delayed by rains so that sowing continued until 
past the middle of the month. The week fol- 
lowing the middle of March was unusually 
cold ; the ground was too much frozen to plow 
during the forenoons for several days. There 
were several more rains during the last ha-f 
of the month, and still others early in April. 
About the middle of April there was a heavy 
frost, which did much damage to fruit. The 
latter part of April and fore part of May there 
was much wet weather and many hard winds, 
which did more or less damage. Crops were 
looking badly on accnunt of wet and cold 
weather. With the opening of June the water 
was high, and the Neosho was nearly out of 
its banks. There were several days of hot 
weather before the middle of the month ; about 
the middle of June harvesting commenced. 
The first half of July was dry, with only a 
few light showers; about the middle of the 
month were several good showers, which were 
a great help to corn. On July 30th there was 
a hard rain, accompanied with lightning which 
struck several buildings. The first few days 
of August were dry and hot ; there was a rain 
on the loth, and another on the 27th ; still 
the corn needed more rain than it received. 



September was a dry and hot month; seeding 
was delayed on account of dry weather; there 
was a fairly good rain near the close of the 
month. The dry weather continued through- 
out October and November. On October 15th 
occurred the first freezing weather of the sea- 
son, which was severe enough to kill vegeta- 
tion. During November, especially toward 
the close, there were several showers which 
were a great help to wheat ; the late-sown wheat 
had not come up until about the middle of 
the month on account of the dry weather. On 
December 2d a blizzard visited us ; two inches 
of snow fell and streams were frozen sufifi- 
ciently to make good skating. Quite a large 
amount of rain fell during the month; late- 
sown wheat now came up. A large amount of 
winter plowing was done before the close of 
"the year. 

1894. — The first half of January was dry 
and mild; plowing was progressing. On the 
i8th there was a good rain, after which it 
turned cold and so remained for several days. 
The first snow of this year fell on the 23d, 
and the thermometer stood at 15 degrees be- 
low zero. In the first week of February there 
was good sleighing; on the nth there was a 
Tiard snow storm that blocked the roads two 
or three days. The cold weather continued 
during the first half of the month; it then 
commenced thawing, and the roads became very 
muddy. Oats sowing commenced the ist of 
March, and was finished about the loth. There 
were two or three rains the first half of the 
month. The weather was generally pleasant 
during March until just before its close, when 
it turned cold and damaged fruit very much. 
Corn planting commenced about March 20th. 
There was plenty of rain during April and 
also during the first half of May. On 
May 2 1 St there was a frost that killed all 

tender vegetation, and another cold wave 
struck us on the 28th. Two rains occurred 
toward the close of the month. Harvest- 
ing commenced the first week in June. On 
the 5th there was rain, and in the north of the 
county a hail storm which damaged crops; on 
the 25th there was a severe hail storm in the 
eastern part of the county. July opened with 
hot weather. There was a heavy rain on the 
8th, and another on the 28th, but prior to the 
latter it had become quite dry. The first 20 
days of August were dry and hot; the dry 
w^eather was broken by a rain on the 2ist. 
Another heavy rain occurred on September 2d. 
This month was favorable for preparing the 
ground and sowing wheat. The first part of 
October was wet, and on the 7th occurred the 
first frost. This entire fall was pleasant weath- 
er. On December 25th came our first snow, 
and the mercury sank nearly to zero. The 
closing week of the year remained cold. 

1895. — January was a cold month. About 
the middle of the month a large amount of ice, 
fully seven inches thick, was put up. Towards 
the close of the month a heavy snow fell, which 
lay on the ground a month; during the most 
of the time sleighing was good. During a 
greater part of the first half of February the 
weather was severely cold, the mercury reach- 
ing twelve degrees below zero on the 7th, and 
ice being put up a foot thick. About the mid- 
dle of the month it moderated, and Ihe re- 
mainder of the month was pleasant. Oats sow- 
ing commenced the last of the month. There 
was a cold spell the first week of March, and 
hard rains from the 12th to the 19th. There 
were also rains the first week of April. Corn 
l^lanting did not really commence until about 
April 8th. There were more rains during the 
rest of April. May was mostl}- dry. There 
was nearlv a week of cold weather about the 



middle of tlie month. There was a httle rain 
during the closing days of the month, but not 
as much as the crops needed. Harvesting com- 
menced the first week in June. There were 
several good rains this month, from the fore 
part to past the middle. On the ist of July 
there was a heavy rain and another on the 7th, 
the latter being accompanied by a small wand 
storm that did great damage all over the coun- 
ty. There was another hard rail and wind 
storm en the loth of the month, and st'll other 
rains later in the month. July was, perhaps, 
the wettest summer month that has ever been 
known since the settlement of the county. 
August was another wet month; however, not 
quite so much water fell as during July. Sep- 
tember kept up the effort to establish a repu- 
tation of a rainy season. On the 8th was one 
of the heaviest rains of the season. Tne ground 
was so wet that very little fall plowing was 
done until after the middle of September. A 
small acreage of wheat was sown this fall, 
owing to the inability of farmers to prepare 
the ground on account of wet weather. Near 
the close of November four inches of ,-now fell 
and there was nearly a week of freezing weath- 
er. The cold weather extended into Decem- 
ber and furnished good skating. On Decem- 
ber 1 8th and 19th there was a heavy fall of 
rain and snow ; streams were full to their banks 
and in some places overflowing; much of the 
wheat on the bottoms was destroyed. The 
last week in the year was rainy and snowy. 
1896. — January was an exceedingly dry 
month ; there was a slight snow on the 20th, 
accompanied by colder weather for a few days. 
but most of the month was pleasant. What 
little rain there was in January and the first 
part of February came in a way t(j make very- 
muddy roads. Oats sowing was in progfess 
the first week of March. Corn planting com- 

menced about the ist of April. There was 
enough rain during ApriL May was a very 
wet month. Wheat harvesting commenced the 
1st of June. There were several heavy rains 
during the mc^nth. July was another wet 
month. The first half oi August was dry 
and very hot, and by the middle of the month, 
corn was suffering for rain. On the 18th and 
19th there was a soaking rain. September and 
October were favored with seasonable rains. 
\\'heat sowing commenced the ist of Septem- 
ber. There were some cold rains early in No- 
vember, and during the latter part of the month; 
there were several days of freezing weather, 
which continued into the first week of Decem- 
ber. December was dry and the weather mostly 
quite moderate to the close of the year, al- 
though there were a number of cold days. 

1897. — January 1st was a beautiful day, 
but in a day or two it turned cold and was 
damp and disagreeable several days. On the 
20th there was a fall of two inches of snow. 
The last week in the month there was a good 
deal of zero weather, and a nice lot of ice 
was put up. February was a damp, cool, dis- 
agreeable month, with muddy roads. The 
damp weather of February was continued in 
March ; there was a good deal of rain through- 
out the month. Oats sowing was commenced 
about the loth, and had many interruptions 
on account of the weather. After the first week 
in April the weather was pleasant. While 
some corn had been planted as early as the 
last week in March, ciirn planting in general 
did not ciimmence until about the middle of 
April. There were two nv three heavy rains 
during the month. ^lay, June and July were 
all, wet months. Harvesting commenced the 
middle of June. The wet. weather of July was 
mostly during the first half of the month. The 
last half of July was very hot, and corn suffered. 


some on account of the heat. The hot weather 
of July continued into August. Notwithstand- 
ing several rains, the ground was generally too 
dry to plow during the whole month of August, 
and the same character of weather continued 
throughout the remainder of the year. Wheat 
sowing commenced about the usual time, but 
on account of dry weather' it was very gen- 
erally suspended until late in the fall. There 
was a general rain on October loth, but not 
enough to thoroughly wet the ground; farm- 
ers had to haul water for their stock and all 
other purposes during the whole fall, many 
of them having to go several miles. Much of 
the wheat did not come up until from the mid- 
dle to the last of November. There was a 
slight freeze on November lyih. During the 
fall there were a number of local showers, but 
no general soaking rain. On December 3d 
and 4th enough snow fell to make sleighing, 
and in the middle of the month there was an- 
other light snow, accompanied by a blizzard, 
but the weather soon moderated ; the last half 
of December was very fine weather. 

1898. — On January 12th there was a good 
rain. Prior to that the weather was dry and 
mild. On the i8th and 19th there was a fall 
of 18 inches of snow, but the next day it com- 
menced melting. There was another heavy 
rain on the 24th. It was, perhaps, the wettest 
January ever known here. There was not very 
much rain during February, but there was a 
good deal of cold weather. March was a wet 
and cold month; on the 21st there was a wind 
storm that did damage in the vicinity of Va- 
leda, and on the 29th another one occurred, 
which was destructive at Bartlett; on the 22d 
of March there was a slight snow, and on the 
28th a freeze which destroyed gardens and in- 
jured oats. On April 4th was one of the 
hardest rains ever known here, and with it fell 

some hail. Corn planting commenced about 
the loth of April, but owing to the wet weather 
it was much delayed, and much of it was not 
planted until in May. On May ist a heavy rain, 
accompanied by wind, did damage at Chetopa 
and other points. A remarkable amount of 
water fell during the spring and summer, and 
the Neosho was out of its banks once of twice 
in July; the wet weather very much interfered 
with harvesting, and also prevented plowing 
until about the middle of August. There were 
several heavy rains in September, but wheat 
sowing was in progress from about the first 
of the month. There was a cold spell the latter 
part of October, and a blizzard accompanied 
by snow and sleet on November 21st. The 
latter part of November and the first half of 
December were cold, a good deal of the time 
the thermometer reaching zero or below. On 
December 3d eight inches of snow fell, and 
four inches more on the nth; on the i8th 
there was a heavy rain, and the Neosho was 
out of its banks in places; the last week of the 
year was disagreeable weather and the roads 
were muddy. 

1899. — The wet, muddy weather of the 
previous month continued into January. Gen- 
erally, the weather during the month was mild ; 
there was not enough ice for skating until near 
the close of the month, when there were several 
days of zero weather; on the 23d and 30th 
there were light snows. February was a cold 
month ; there were a number of days when the 
mercury sank below zero, and on the 12th it 
reached 27 degrees below zero. The snow 
which fell on January 23d was added to on 
several occasions, and lay on the ground until 
past the middle of February; about the 20th 
of the month the weather commenced to mod- 
erate. Farmers commenced sowing oats the 
last of February. There was another snow 



on the 4th of March, but it did not remain 
long, and still another on the i8th, when the 
weather was somewhat colder; on March 27th 
and 28th some six inches of snow fell and there 
was good sleighing for two or three days. 
This weather was repeated on the 5th of April, 
when there was a fall of five inches of snow/ 
and sleighs were again running for a day or 
two. As a whole, the winter seems to have 
been the coldest one experienced for years, if 
not the coldest ever known here; quite a good 
deal of wheat was killed by the cold, and was 
plowed up and put into spring crops. Corn 
planting commenced about the middle of April, 
but was delayed by the hard rains occurring 
the latter part of April and the fore part of 
May. On May 9th there was a severe electri- 
cal storm. There were a number of hard rains 
during June and July, and the Neosho was out 
of its banks once or twice. Farmers com- 
menced their wheat harvest about the middle 
of June. On August 13th there was a heavy 
rain, accompanied by wind, which did much 
damage to corn and fruit. While during the 
fall there were several rains, August, Septem- 
ber and October were generally dry. There 
was plenty of rain during November. On the 
nth and 13th of December there were several 
inches of snow, and on the 15th ice was thick 
enough for skating. Muddy roads prevailed 
during the latter part of December. 

1900. — There were several slight snows 
during January, and one or two heavy rains, 
besides a good deal of damp, misty weather. 
The last half of the month was rather pleas- 
ant, and at the close of the month there was 
a hard freeze. The first half of February was 
pleasant; one or two rains in that time were 
helpful to wheat; on the iSth there was enough 
freezing to make good skating. The first week 
of March was cold and disagreeable; on the 

5 th there was a soaking rain. Farmers com- 
menced sowing oats the second week in March, 
and planting corn about the 20th. About the 
middle of April there was a hard trust which 
killed to the ground most of the corn that was 
up. About April nth, an electrical storm oc- 
curred in which several barns near Oswego 
were burned to the ground. May was rather 
dry and the month generally pleasant. There 
were several rains in June; on the 7th there was 
a hard wind storm. Harvesting commenced 
about the nth but was somewhat interfered 
with by wet weather. Towards the close of 
the month there was some extremely hot 
weather. In July there were more hard rains. 
A quantity of grain was destroyed by the Ne- 
osho getting out of its banks. The fore part 
of August was dry but in the latter part of the 
month there were several rains and the wet 
weather continued into September; in fact, 
there was plenty of rain during September. 
Wheat sowing did not commence until about 
the middle of September. The Neosho was 
again bank full, and in some places out of 
banks the fore part of October. On October 
9th occurred the iirst frost. The entire fall was 
mild and pleasant. The first freezing that was 
hard enough to make skating was in the last 
week in the year, and this lasted a day or two 
in January; but all the time the weather was 
pleasant. The only snow that fell this winter 
was on the 12th of February, 1901, and that 
was hardly enough to cover the ground well. 
The winter was one of the mildest and most 
pleasant in our history. Until the close of De- 
cember there was nothing to interfere with 
plowing, and very little weather too cold to 
do any kind of farm work during January and 
the first part of Februarjr, 1901. Towards the 
close of February, there was a little freezing 




I am indebted to D. Doyle and James M. 
Carrigan for the material contained in the fol- 
lowing tables. Mr. Doyle kept the Govern- 
ment weather bureau station at Oswego until 
November, 1899, after which it was in charge 
of Mr. Carrigan. The maximum figures indi- 
cate the evening observations and the min- 
imum figures the morning observations. 

January. . 
March . . .. 




August.. . . 


November . 
December . 

IN Degrees 

F"or the year ! 

January.. , 
March ... . 








For the year. 










3 13 

4 07 

5 00 

6 78 

2 95 


2. 50 

3 22 

6 41 



September. . . . 




For the year 














For the year 














For the year, 














For the year. 


IN Degrees 

70 I 40 










September.. . 



December . . . 

For the yea 

IN Degrees 

•Up II 




January.. . 
March.. . . 
April .... 





November I 54 

December 1 50 

IN Degrees 


For the year 


1871. — July loth, hard wind followed by 
rain, at Parsons. August 27th, hard wind 
storm at Chetopa ; several houses blown down 
(among them Lockwood's house, four miles 
west) ; tornado from northwest to southeast 
over Elm Grove and other townships; over 20 
houses badly damaged and several completely 
destroyed; Mrs. Scott and child, in Howard 
township, killed; one man had an arm broken; 
Alfred Swope's house all blown to pieces; Mat 
Sharp's house, with 16 in it, blown over. 

1873. — Night of April 5th hail storm 
broke out all window lights in west side of 
buildings in Oswego. May 22d storm at Jack- 
sonville blew down several buildings and killed 
seven persons. 

1877. — June 6th, wind storm at Chetopa 
blew down chimneys, tore ofif roofs, etc. June 
i8th, one of the hardest rains ever known, ac- 
companied by wind and hail. August iSth, 
cyclone, water-spout, and hail storm, fromi 
southwest to northeast, between Chetopa and 

1878. — March ist, cyclone between Labette 
and Parsons; J. M. Wilson's large barn picked 
up, carried some distance, and demolished; E. 
Well's barn, in North township, blown to 
pieces; picked his house up and put it down 
some two rods away; demolished R. Kimball's 
barn; took his house from foundation and 
turned it around; blew down stone building 

for E. H. Taylor. June 6th, tornado over 
Labette City, which demolished the school- 
house and did some other damage. 

1879. — May 30th, severe wind and rair. 
storm at Chetopa; signs' blown down, etc. 
June 14th, another hard wind storm, from 
west to east, over southern portion of county, 
partly removed Kinston Presbyterian church 
from foundation, and blew in one or two build- 
ings in Chetopa. July — Wind blew down east 
span of Chetopa bridge, then in process of 

1880. — April 2d, severe hail storm in Wal- 
ton, and also in northern part of county gen- 
erally. May 8th, small cyclone west of Che- 
topa damaged W. E. Liggett's kitchen and or- 
chard. December nth, severe rain and wind 
storm at Chetopa; partly removed Catholic 
church from its foundation; also other build- 

1 88 1. — September 29th, a small tornado in 
Oswego scattered some of Sharp's lumber, 
blew down Tuttle's porch, etc. 

1883. — May 13th, a cyclone from the Ter- 
ritory came in west of Cecil, blew Cecil M. E. 
church to pieces, throwing the capstones to the 
windows through the air, but leaving Bible and 
hymn-book untouched on the box used for a 
pulpit; blew M. U. Ramsburg's house to atoms, 
partly tore down other buildings, and uprooted 
trees. The storm occurred about 6 p. m., just 



after church was out. At tlie same time both 
houses at Fishkill were reported to have been 
torn down. 

1884. — July 2d, tornado blew Cecil church 
to atoms; destroyed houses, barns, grain; 
heavy hail. 

1885. — September nth, hail storm at Par- 
sons and vicinity. 

1893. — April 19th, quite a severe electri- 
cal storm at Edna. April 25th, a hail storm 
did considerable damage at and in the vicinity 
of Oswego. May 8th, heavy hail storm in the 
western part of the county. 

1894. — June 25, one of the hardest hail 
storms ever known in the county visited the 
southern and eastern portion of the county; 
nearly all the grain between Oswego and Che- 
topa was destroyed ; the oat straw was cut into 
small pieces. 

1895. — July 5th, an electrical storm at Che- 
topa. July /th, a very severe wind storm ex- 
tended over most of the county; at Altamont, 
it unroofed buildings, blew down porches and 
did other general damage; at Chetopa, it blew 
down the smoke-stack to the electric light 
plant, removed and destroyed nearly all the 
awnings and porches in the business part of 
the town, broke down trees and caused a large 
amount of other damage. At Oswego, the 

water works iron stand-pipe was blown down, 
the streets were obstructed with broken shade 
trees, the opera house and several other build- 
ings' were unroofed, and general damage was 
sustained in very many ways; at other points 
in the county the damage was not so great 

1896. — May (near the close), a hard wind 
storm blew down or removed from their foun- 
dations several buildings in the northeast part 
of the county. 

1898. — May 1st, a wind storm unroofed 
some buildings in Chetopa and removed others 
from their foundations. 

1900. — ^June 7th, a tornado swept over quite 
a large portion of the county. In the south- 
eastern portion it unroofed some buildings, 
broke down trees and made itself felt in other 
respects. Just west of Oswego it blew a por- 
tion of a train from the St. Louis & San Fran- 
cisco Railroad tracks. At Labette it made a 
total wreck of the Baptist church and also 
blew down one or two dwelling houses and sev- 
eral barns. Along the Neosho bottom, in the 
northeast part of the county, it wrecked several 
buildings, broke down trees and injured crops. 
Trees were blown down and a large number of 
buildings more or less injured in Parsons. Ten 
days later this stonn was duplicated in the 
northeast part of the county. 


While we were still a part of Neosho coun- 
ty, we were recognized by its authorities as 
being of sufficient importance to be provided 
with at least apparent municipal privileges. 
The first official record which I have found, 
directly tending to give us these privileges, was 
made March 6, 1865, by the commissioners of 
Neosho county, at which time, in dividing the 
county into municipal townships, they formed 
Mission township, and made it embrace all 
south of Canville township as far south as the 
county line, and established Osage Mission as 
the voting-place of the township. By this order 
of the commissioners, the southern part of 
Neosho county, and all of what is now Labette 
county, was embraced in one township, with 
Osage Mission as the headquarters thereof. 
The next official action affecting our municipal 
affairs was made by the commissioners of 
Neosho county on July 2, 1866, the record of 
which is as follows : 

"On motion, it was resolved that the south 
line of Mission township shall be designated 
as follows : By a line running due east and 
west across three miles due south of Osage 
Catholic Mission. 

"On motion, it was resolved that there be a 
township organized to be called Lincoln town- 
ship, and to be bounded as by a line running 
due east and west from a point two miles north 
of the mouth of Hickory Creek across the 
county, on the north by Mission township, on 

the east by the county line, and on the west by 
the county line. Place of voting, Trotter's 
ford, on the Neosho river, at Patterson's 

"On motion, it was resolved that there be a 
new township organized south of Lincoln 
township, to be called Grant township, bounded 
as follows : On the north by Lincoln township, 
on the east by county line, and on the south by 
line running due east and west from Reaves's 
mill-site on the Neosho River, on the west by 
county line. Place of voting, Montana. 

" On motion, it was resolved that there be 
a new township organized south of Grant 
township, to be called Labette township; said 
township to be bounded as follows': On the 
north by the south line of Grant township, on 
the east by the county line, on the south by the 
county line, on the west by the county line. 
Place of voting : J. S. Steel's house." 

This provision made a strip something over 
a mile in width of what is now Labette county 
a part of Lincoln township, and the remainder 
of Labette county was divided into Grant and 
Labette townships. 

Before the organization of Labette county, 
the governor appointed two justices of the 
peace : one, George Bennett, residing at Mon- 
tana; and the other C. H. Talbot, residing at 
Oswego. From the record in the office of the 
Secretary of State, it would seem that two 
orders were made for the appointment of Mr. 



Bennett — one on May 15, and the other on June 
8, 1866. I do not know what was the cause 
of this. On July 3, 1866 the comnn'ssioners 
of Neosho county apprc^-ed Mr. Bennett's 
bond as justice of the peace, which made him 
the first legally qualified civil officer residing 
in what is now Labette county. Mr. Talbot 
was appointed Septemlser 24, 1866, and proba- 
bly qualified soon thereafter, although I have 
not the date of his qualification. 

Upon the appointment of the commission- 
ers for the organization of the county, before 
calling an election, they divided the county into 
nine precincts: four in range 21, the south one 
of which they named Chetopa; three in the 
central part of the county, designated North, 
Labette and Hackberry; and two in the west- 
ern part, which they designated Timber Hill 
(or possibly Big Hill, as Mr. Dickerman, then 
county clerk, says), and Pumpkin Creek. How- 
ever this name is not given at all in any record 
we now have, but in the first reference to this 
part of the county in the commissioners' pro- 
ceedings, it is called Canada. Of the division 
thus made there was no change until Novem- 
ber 21, 1867, excepting to more definitely or- 
ganize Timber Hill and Canada townships. The 
only change subsequently made was to divide 
some of these townships and create new munic- 


The settlement of this township commenced 
in the summer of 1865. I have found no one 
who knows the date of the first settlement, nor 
even who the first settler was. Much of the 
information from which this account is made is 
derived from James W. Galyen, who settled on 
the south half of section 8, township 31, range 
21, Dec. 25, i86t. When he came there were 

already ali)ng the ri\er sex'eral families, all 
of whom had come that fall and winter ; so that 
it may be safely said that the settlement of the 
township did not commence prior to September 
of that year. It is probable that the first set- 
tlers in the township were a company who came 
from Texas, composed of a Jones family and 
a Cox family, each containing quite a number 
of individuals, and some others. They seemed 
to have been on their way north, without any 
very definite point of destination in view, and 
were camping along the river in this township, 
allowing their stock to feed, when they heard of 
the proposed treaty with the Osages and con- 
cluded to locate there. Among those who were 
located when Mr. Galyen came were: Jesse 
Frye, on section 9; a man by the name of John 
Buck, on the east side of the river; Newton 
Lowery, on section 5 ; and Mr. Spriggs, on sec- 
tion 16. Mr. Spriggs had a pole shanty on his 
claim at this time, but never brought his family 
here, and sold his claim to Asa Rogers. Craig 
Coffield and Clark Coffield located on section 
28, in November; Holland and Baldwin were 
located on section 4. At the close of 1865 it 
is probable that there were not to exceed a 
dozen families in the township, and some of 
these were only there for the purpose of hold- 
ing the claims until they could get something 
out of them and then leave. In 1866 many 
more settlers came in, and much was done to- 
ward improving the claims taken. Messrs. 
Brown and Sampson R. Robinson brought a 
saw mill from Bourbon county and located it 
on section 4, in the fall of 1866, and soon had 
it in operation. This was the first mill in oper- 
atinn in the county, and from it Mr. Galyen 
got the first lumber that was made, which he 
used to make a floor for his cabin. All the 
cabins up to this time had nothing but dirt 
floors. Of the settlers who came about this 



time I may mention William Logan, who came 
early in 1866. He ran a blacksmith shop at 
Jacksonville; was the first trustee of the town- 
ship, having been elected at the election in 
April, 1867, and was elected county commis- 
sioner in the fall of 1867, and figured quite 
largely in the local affairs in that part of the 
county. Nathan Ames came in the latter part 
of 1866, and settled on sections 16 and 17, and 
at once became one of the leading spirits in the 
new settlement. Messrs. Pringle and Marguad 
settled on section 21 the same fall. 


On July 4, 1866, the first celebration in that 
part of the county was held in Kenney's grove 
on the northwest quarter of section 23. All 
the settlers in that part of the county gathered 
here to see each other and participate in the 
celebration. Dr. Thurman, who lived on sec- 
tion 22, read the Declaration of Independence. 
On July 4, 1867, another celebration was held, 
this time in Logan's grove, at which J. F. Bel- 
lamy, who had shortly before that time moved 
into the vicinity, gave the address. 


A Mr. Owens was located on the north- 
east quarter of section 5, in 1866. His wife 
was an enthusiastic worker, and that summer 
opened in their own house and conducted the 
first Sunday-school in the township, which 
was continued until the winter. \A'e have no 
account of any preaching in the township until 
1867, when Joseph Rogers, who was a Method- 
ist local preacher living on section 16, west of 
the river, commenced holding services at pri- 
vate houses at different points in the township. 
After the school-house in district 16 was com- 

pleted, Rev. Jackson Statton commenced 
preaching there, and continued for some time 
to hold services. 

The first school in the township was taught 
by Mrs. Abigail Ames, wife of Samuel Ames, 
in their own house on the northwest quarter 
of section 14, in the spring of 1868. That fall 
E. H. Taylor commericed teaching school in 
a house on section 5, and finished in the log 
school-house which the citizens turned out and 
constructed that fall. In this school-house, as 
soon as it was finished a literary society was 
organized, of which Mr. Taylor was president, 
and at the meetings nearly all the people in that 
part of the county were present. 

West of the Neosho River on both sides of 
the county line, partly in section 5 in this coun- 
ty, partly in Neosho county, was situated one 
of White Hair's towns. This was aban- 
doned about the time the white settlers com- 
menced coming in here. About 100 graves 
could be counted on this site, in some of which 
the frame of the occupant was still sitting and 
well preserved. The burying was done by 
piling stones over the lower extremities, leav- 
ing the body in a sitting posture, and then pil- 
ing up stones around it. When the settlers 
came here they found the remains of an old 
building on section 4, the posts still standing, 
giving evidence that at some prior time the 
Catholics from the Mission had probably had 
a station. The mile-posts between the Cher- 
okee Neutral Lands and the Osage Reserva- 
tion were still standing as they had been placed 
there by the surveyors when the lines had been 



T. D. G. Marquad and Mary Buck were 
married, it is said, in April, 1866; if this is 
correct it must have been the first mariage in 
the county after the war. 

In May, 1866, Mr. and Mrs. Hampton had 
born to them twins, named John and Mary. 


There has been no change in the boundary 
of the east tier of townships from the time of 
their organization. They were all laid off by 
the commissioners appointed for the organiza- 
tion of the county, prior to the first election. 
There is no record of their organization prior 
to November 21, 1867, when the whole county 
was laid off into townships, at which time it 
was declared, "Neosho township No. i shall in- 
clude town 31, R. 21." Two voting precincts 
have been maintained in the township almost 
from its organization — one on the east and the 
other on the west side of the Neosho. There is 
no record showing who were elected officers in 
April, 1867, but on October 2^, 1867, the res- 
ignation of John W. Ankron as justice of the 
peace is accepted, and the record subsequently 
shows J. B. Graham to be one of the justices of 
the peace. On January 14, 1868, "It is hereby 
ordered, that the office of, township trustee in 
Neosho township be declared vacant, as the 
present holder of said office has been elected to a 
county office." This evidently refers to Will- 
iam Logan, who had been elected and quali- 
fied as one of the county commissioners, and 
it is safe to say he was the trustee elected in 
April, 1867. On the day on which the office 
was declared vacant as above, Anthony Amend 
was appointed to fill the vacancy. For some 
reason which I do not know, no election was 

held in this township in April, 1868, and the 
following officers were appointed Ijy the com- 
missioners : Anthony Amend, trustee; N. H. 
Hopkins, clerk; S. K. Robinson, treasurer; J. 
B. Thurman and William Fish, justices of the 
peace; John Summers and Noah Frye, consta- 
bles; John Radfield, road overseer. 

The officers of this township were the first 
to take steps toward bridging the streams. 
The action of the trustees created a good deal 
of dissatisfaction. It was claimed that a "job 
was put up" by which a large amount of money 
was to be paid by the township and received by 
some one for inferior bridges. A tax of i'4 
mills was levied in 1868 for building bridges. 


In the spring of 1866 a firm of millers at 
lola sent some teams loaded with flour and 
meal down the Neosho, to sell to the settlers 
along the river. Two teams came into what is 
now Labette county, and on their return made 
such a favorable report of the county that sev- 
eral in that vicinity, and some connected with 
the mill, came down. Among these were 
Messrs. Carr, McBride, Wells, Ballentine, and 
Smith; the latter settled at the junction of the 
Big and Little Labette, and put up a small shan- 
ty. Mr. Ballentine paid Mr. Smith $60 for 
this claim, which took in most of the timber at 
this point. Just previous to this, Zack Fultz 
had laid a foundation on a claim adjoining this 
on the east, and when the survey was made, 
the improvements of the two claims were found 
to be on the same quarter. Mr. Fultz paid 
Mr. Ballentine $200 for his improvements, and 
got the claim. ^Ir. Ballentine then bought Mr. 


Hart's claim, on section. 36, where he settled 
and made his home. Mr. Hart then moved 
over to the Labette, in Liberty township, just 
below the mouth of Bachelor Creek. Fred 
Latham settled on section 27, and his father- 
in-law, Mr. Keys, upon a claim just west of the 
creek. About the same time William Tolen 
settled in the northern part of the township, and 
gave the name to a little stream, "Tolen 
Branch." Li July, 1867, the following settle- 
ments were made: Albert Porter and W. H. 
Porter, on section 20; William Fultz, on sec- 
tion 17; Abraham Cary, on section 18; John 
Kendall, on section 19. 

In the fall of 1868 Moses Steel and his 
brother Len Steel brought a saw mill and put 
it in the forks of the Little and Big Labette, 
and had it in operation early in 1869. 

In June, 1869, Abraham Cary brought from 
Lawrence the first reaper and mower that was 
had in this part of the county. 


Originally North township included its 
present territory and also the east half of what 
is Walton township, and on November 21, 
1867, in reforming the townships the com- 
missioners ordered that "North township No. 
7 shall include town 31, R. 19, 20," and it con- 
tinued with these bounds until Walton town- 
ship was detached. There seems to have been 
no election held in this township in April, 1867, 
at the time when the first county and township 
officers were elected. On October 4th an order 
was made by the commissioners for an election 
to be held for township officers in this township 
at the November election following. At this 

-time the following officers were elected: Sam- 
uel Ballentine, trustee; William Scott and 
David B. Stevens, justices of the peace; James 
M. Clayton and D. W. Reed, constables; and 
John Steward, road supervisor. These were 
the first township officers. There is no rec- 
ord of either clerk or treasurer being elected at 
this time. On April 7, 1868, the following 
officers were elected: Samuel Ballentine, trus- 
tee ; J. D. Keys, clerk ; F. W. Latham, treasurer ; 
William Porter and A. Medkifif, justices of the 
peace; William Fultz and Oscar Knowles, con- 
stables; and Zack Fultz, road overseer. In 
April, 1869, H. Singleton was elected trustee, 
and Samuel Ballentine treasurer. By some ar- 
rangement made at the time, which does not 
appear of record, Mr. Ballentine, instead of 
taking the office of treasurer, was continued as 
trustee for another year. 


The first settler in Walton township was 
Jefiferson Davis, who came in June, 1866, and 
located on the southeast quarter of section 22. 
In August of that year the Weekly family, con- 
sisting of Luther, Perry, John, and Mary, lo- 
cated on section 17, and David Edwards on 
the northeast quarter of section 23. In the 
spring of 1867 Merrit Mason came, and 
bought the northeast quarter of section 17 from 
Mr. Weekly, and thereon made his home. In 
the fall of 1866 John Collins settled on the 
southeast quarter of sectfDn 36. Perhaps dur- 
ing these years there may have been a few other 
settlers along the Little Labette, but if so I 
have not learned the names of such. In 1869 
the township received a large number of set- 
tlers. On May ist Nelson Parker settled on 
the southwest quarter of section 27, and about 
the middle of May J. A. Jones settled on the 


northeast quarter of section 26; not far from 
the same time Alexander Abies and William 
Abies on the east half of section 29, George T. 
Walton on section 16, J. M. Gregory on section 
26. W. A. Disch, E. P. Emery, S. R. Hill, 
John Parker, C. C. Kinnison and R. P. Clark 
were all there before the opening of 1870; and 
on February 5, 1870, S. B. Shafer settled on 
-the southwest quarter of section 21. 


During the summer of 1869 quite a large 
number of Catholics settled in the northern 
part of the township, and have ever since been 
among the most thrifty and progressive settlers 
■of that vicinity. 


Walton township was a part of North 
township as originally constituted. An order 
of the commissioners was made on April 6, 
1870, on the petition of G. T. Walton, M. S. 
Mason, T. O'Connor, and some 50 other elect- 
ors, for the organization of township 31, range 
19, into a municipal township to be called Wal- 
ton, and the following officers were appointed : 
Merrit S. Mason, trustee ; A. C. Perkins, clerk ; 
Timothy O'Connor, treasurer; Jason Luncin- 
ford, constable. On account of ill-health Mr. 
Mason was granted permission to appoint a 
deputy to assist in performing the duties of 


The settlement of what is now Osage 
township dates from the fall of 1866. The 
first person to locate within the present bounds 
of this township was Thomas May and family, 

who settled upun the northwest quarter of sec- 
tion 5, township ^2, range 18, in September, 
1866, where he died the following year. There 
being no lumber in that locality, the neighbors 
sawed up a wagon-bed and made a coffin in 
which to bury him. The next settler was 
Milton A. Buckles, who came December 3, 
1866, and settled on the northwest quarter of 
section 33. Isaac Vance located with his fam- 
ily on the southeast quarter of section 29, 
township 31, range 18, on which he died, in 
1870. Harvey Beggs settled on the southeast 
quarter of section 7, township 32, range iS, 
and after living on it several years moved away 
in 1871. Solomon Adams and famil/ resided 
on the northwest quarter of section 6, township 
32, range 18, till 1870, when he moved away. 
On the southeast quarter of this same section 
Harvey Waymire made his home, and put up 
the first saw mill in the township in May, 1869. 
In the fall of 1869 the engine with which the 
saw mill was run exploded, and killed Mr. 
Waymire and Mr. Worley. 

In 1867 many settlers came in, of whom I 
will mention a few : Felix Oliphant, John Oli- 
phant, Frank Larberdy, John Frost, Thomas 
J. Vance, George Vance, W. H. Carpenter, J. 
H. Dienst, Jacob D. Dick, Henry Griffith and 
Alexander W. King are among those who that 
year helped to develop the county. Of those 
who came in 1868, F. M. Webb, W. H. Webb, 
J. H. Beatty, J. A. Newman, W. M. Rogers and 
Leroy F. Dick may be mentioned as active pro- 
moters of the general spirit of enterprise. 

William A. Starr. \\'illiani Dick, J. L. 
Jaynes. John Carson. C. J. Darling, P. B. 
Darling, J. S. Masters, J. B. Swart, Jacob 
Warner, John Robinson, W. H. Thome, G. W. 
Blake and W. W. Blake settled in 1869 and 
1870, and each added a fair share to the pros- 
perit}- and development of the township. Did 


I know all the settlers and were I acquainted 
with all the facts, others might probably be 
mentioned who are as worthy as any whom I 
have named; but these are named as a fair 
sample of those who first settled and devel- 
oped this northwest corner of the county. 


Mrs. Elizabeth A. King, who with her hus- 
band, A. W. King, had settled on the south- 
west quarter of section 28, township 31, range 
18, in June, 1867, taught the first school in the 
township, in the summer of 1868, as' I am told 
by Mr. King, in their cabin on his claim. It 
was a free school for the few children then in 
the neighborhood. 


The first celebration in the township was 
July 4, 1869, on the northwest quarter of sec- 
tion 29. Milton Buckles read the Declaration 
of Independence. The day was principally 
given up to a picnic and social enjoyment. 


In the fall of 1867 the citizens met and put 
up a big house on Pleasant May's claim in 
the bottom on the west side of the creek, on sec- 
tion 5, in township 32, to be used for religious 
and other gatherings. In this the first Sunday- 
school was organized, in the spring of 1868, 
with Pleasant May as superintendent. A. W. 
King was the first preacher in the township. 
He, with David Stanfield, J. S. Harryman, and 
Sheldon Parker, of the Methodist church, and 
J. L. ^Masters, of the Christian church, dis- 
pensed the Gospel for several years over quite 
a portion of the new settlements in the western 
Ijart of the county. 

The first store in the township was startci 
in 1868, on the southeast quarter of section 33, 
township 31, range 18, by Luther Weakly and 
Frank Larberdy. In the fall of 1869, G. W. 
and W. W. Blake put in a stock of general 
merchandise in a building erected on the town- 
site of Timber Hill, which they continued to 
deal in until 1871. 

Dr. Lakins was the first in the township to 
offer his services as an aid to those desiring 
relief from physical ailments. He died a num- 
ber of years ago, but his faithful mule, "Joab," 
it is said, still survives him. In 1869 Dr. 
Boutillier opened a small drug store, which he 
ran in connection with his practice. 

The following letter may be appropriately 
inserted here : 

"Coffeyville^Kansas, Jan, 18, 1892. 

"Judge Nelson Case, Oswego, Kansas — 
Dear Sir; I settled in Osage township, La- 
bette county, in the autumn of 1866, in com- 
pany with Harry Waymire and Isaac Vance. 
There was but one man before us, a Mr. May, 
who had built his cabin just before our arri- 
val. Others followed fast and when the 
spring of 1867 had opened we had quite a set- 
tlement on the Big Hill Creek. In July, 1867, 
I was appointed a committee to visit the com- 
missioners at Oswego and procure an order 
for the organization of a municipal township, 
which was effected at once. I remember well 
that when I found the commissioners' court,, 
.which I had some trouble in doing, the com- 
missioners were sitting astraddle of the sleep- 
ers in a hewed-log house in Oswego. There was 
neither door, floor nor windows, the house 
not being finished at the time. 

"The first child born in the township was 


Rolla Wood, son of Zachariah and Matilda 

"Our nearest postoffice was Roger's store. 
where Chanute now is. We did our milling at 
Humboldt, and hauled lumber from the Ne- 
osho. I believe I am the only survivor of the 
first settler of Osage township. 
"Very respectfully yours, 

'"Milton A. Buckles." 


I am not quite sure whether the first name 
by which this territor}' was known was Timber 
Creek or Big Hill township. The commis- 
sioners appointed to organize the county laid 
off the west part into two precincts, which 
Mr. Dickerman says were designated Timber 
Hill and Pumpkin Creek; but no voting-place 
was designated in either of them at that time, 
probably for the reason that there was not a 
sufficient number of residents to justify the 
holding an election therein. The first official 
record we have relating to this township is 
the order of the commissioners made June S, 
1867, declaring that "Timber Hill township 
shall include townships 31 and 32, range 18, 
and the west half of townships 31 and 32 of 
range 19, and as far west as the county line." 
In th!s order, as it appears in the original 
record, written on foolscap paper, the name 
of the township is first written Big Hill, and a 
line is drawn through "Big," and "Timber" h 
written above it. On July i, 1867, it was 
"Ordered that a precinct be established at Tim- 
ber Hill at the residence of Mr. Frank Lar- 
berdy, in Timber Hill township, T. 31 and 32, 
R. 18 and 19." On October 21, 1867, it was 
"Ordered that Timber Hill township to be 
changed to Big Hill," and at the same time it 
was ordered that the voting precinct be 

changed from Mr. Larl)erdy"s to Mr. Eli 
Sparks. The first election in the township 
was held November 5, 1867, at which the fol- 
lowing officers were elected : J. S. Blair, trus- 
tee; Isaac Van Sickle and Eli Sparks, justices 
of the peace; H. Waymire and J. Courtney, 
constables ; Z. C. Wood, road overseer. On Xo- 
vember 21, 1867, the commissioners made an 
order more definitely fixing and somewhat 
changing municipal townships, by the provis- 
ions of which it was declared that "Big Hill 
township No. 8, shall include town 31 and ^2, 
R. 17 and 18." On April 6, 1868, a petition 
therefor having been made to the cotnmission- 
ers, they ordered "That the township common- 
ly known as Big Hill shall hereafter be known 
in all official transactions as Osage township," 
and at the same time made an order establish- 
ing the south line of Osage township so as to 
include the north half of township 32, in 
ranges 17 and 18. 


On November 12, 1870, on the pet'tion of 
Albert Allison and 49 other citizens for a 
division of the west tier of townships into four 
instead of three, forming a new town.ship out of 
parts of Osage and Alound \'alley town, hips, 
it was ordered that township t,2, ranges 17 and 
18, be detached from Osage and Mound Val- 
ley townships and organized into a municipal 
township under the name of Big Hill town- 
ship, for which the following officers were ap- 
pointed: William Johns, trustee; Albert Alli- 
son, clerk; S. C. Hockett, treasurer. I find no 
action of the commissioners changing or re- 
voking this order; nevertheless, the order was 
never acted upon, the officers appointed never 
qualified, and Osage and Mound Valley town- 
ships remained' as though no such order had 
ever been made. 


On May 30, 1871, on the petition of Will- 
iam Dick and 69 others, the commissioners 
made an order restraining- stock from running 
at large at night-time for a term of one 3'ear. 


On September 17, 1875, the Osage Pioneer 
Association was organized, with S. C. Hockett 
as president, Joel Bergess, vice-president, W. 

A. Starr and Lindsey, secretaries, and 

William Dick, treasurer. 



There were two early settlers in this coun- 
ty who would be in Mound Valley township ex- 
cept for the fact that in 1870 more than two 
miles of our territory was given to Montgomery 
county. On June 3, 1866, Mr. Rutherford 
settled on the northeast quarter of section 4, in 
township ^T,, of range 17, and on December 
10, 1866, R. M. Bennett, afterwards county 
treasurer, settled on the southeast quarter of 
section 5, in the same township. 

The first white people to make settlement 
in Mound Valley township as now constituted 
were the families of Mr. McCormick and Mr. 
Courtney. If any one was there before them, 
.'he left no trace of his habitation. Joseph Mc- 
Cormick, with his wife Martha and his son 
Joseph C, and in company with them John 
M. Cuurtney and his wife Mary, came from 
Danville, III, and on July 24, 1866, took their 
respective claims in this township. Mr. Mc- 
Cormick settled on parts of sections 23 and 24, 
township 32, range 17, where he made his 
home until his death, on December 10, 1871, 

his wife having died the March preceding. 
Mr. McCormick lived in his wagon until he 
could build a log house, which he completed 
in about two months. He soon brought on a 
few goods, with which 'he traded with the 
Indians for their buffalo meat and such other 
things as they had to dispose of that he 
could use. Mr. Courtney settled on a part 
of section 26, township 32, range 17, which 
he improved and on which he lived till he 
moved to Cherryvale, where he now resides. 
John McMichael came in September, 1866, 
and settled on the same section as Mr. Court- 
ney. In November, 1866, Eli Sparks settled 
on the southeast quarter of section 18, town- 
ship 32, range 18. 


Green L. Canada settled on the northeast 
quarter of section 17, township 33, range 18, 
January 12, 1867. William Jones and John 
M. Stigenwalt came February 20, 1867. Mr. 
Jones settled on the section with Mr. Courtney 
and Mr. McMichael, and Mr. Stigenwalt set- 
tied on the section with Mr. Sparks, where he 
lived on a well-improved farm until August 
25, 1892, when he died from the effects of a 
kick by a horse, received the day before. John 
W. Claspell came in September, 1867. Samuel 
C. Hockett near that time settled on section 
18, together with Mr. Sparks and Mr. Stigen- 
walt, while his daughter, Josie Hockett, took 
a claim north of him, on section 7, in Osage 

J. G. Peni.x settled on the northwest quar- 
ter of section 25, township 32, range 17, on 
April 8, 1868, where he lived for fifteen years, 
made a good farm, and is now in Cherryvale, 



enjoying the fruits of hisi industr}-. D. S. 
Muncie took the southwest quarter of section 
25, township 33, range 18, on which he built, 
in 1869, a one and one-half story frame house, 
16 by 24 feet. The lumber for this he hauled 
from Chetopa. This was the first frame house 
in this part of the township. In 1870 Mr. 
Muncie sold his farm to J. H. Tibbits. 


Mound Valley township was originally a 
part of what afterward became Osage and 
Canada townships. It was not until June 13, 
1S70, tliat, upon the petition of Henry Rohr 
and some 50 other residents of its territory, 
the commissioners made an order for the or- 
ganization of four tiers of sections lying north 
and the same number lying south of the line 
between townships 32 and 33 in ranges 17 and 
18, into a municipal township with the name 
of Mound Valley. The following officers 
were appointed for the new township : Jo- 
sephus Moore, trustee; Alexander Honrath, 
clerk; J. M. Richardson, treasurer. At the 
same time, on the petition therefor, the order 
of the commissioners was made restraining 
stock from running at large in the night-time 
for the term of five years. On July 28. 1870, 
Jonas Parks was appointed constable, and S. 
C. Hockett was recommended for the appoint- 
ment of justice of the peace. 


The first settlement of this township as 
now constituted commenced in the fall of 1868, 
but there were only a few who came before 
the spring of 1869. The first settlers were scat- 
tered along Bachelor creek. Of these I may 
mention Leveret Wood, who came in the fall 
of 1868, and settled on the northeast quarter 

of section i ; the ne.xt spring John Singleton 
settled on the northwest quarter of section i, 
and James H. Martin on the northeast quarter 
of section 2; Millard Sargent on the north- 
west quarter and his brother on the south- 
west quarter of the same section; Edward C. 
Sanford on the northwest quarter of section 
3, Major Hope on the southeast quarter, and 
Calvin S. Tracy on the southwest quarter of 
section 36. All of these parties were located 
prior to the middle of July, 1869, at which 
time John J. Miles settled on the southwest 
(|uarter of section 34. 

With the opening of 1870 many new parties 
came into the township, of whom I may men- 
tion Thomas Mahar and his sons, who settled 
on section 21. The settlement of this town- 
ship was nearly completed when James Beggs, 
on March 16, 1871, settled on the southwest- 
quarter of section 19. 


In the original division of the coimty into 
municipal townships, made by the commission- 
ers prior to the first election in the spring of 
1867, the central portion of the county, em- 
bracing what is now Liberty, Labette. Mount 
Pleasant and Fairview townships, was made 
to constitute the township of Labette. The 
first official record we have of the forrnation 
of this township is an order of the board made 
November 21, 1867, in which Labette town- 
ship is numbered 6, and is declared to include- 
townships 32 and 33, in ranges^ 19 and 20. 
It is possible that there was an election held 
in the township in the spring of 1867, and' 
probably one was held in the fall of that year, 
but as to both of these the record is silent. 
The first election of which we have any rec- 
ord was held on April 7, 1868. At this elec- 
tion H. P. Reeding was elected trustee, M. H._ 


Logan, clerk; J. F. Molesworth, treasurer; E. 
Reed and J. P. Peterson, justices of the peace; 
G. W. Springer and T. M. Abbott, constables, 
and Sam Lewis, road overseer. At the elec- 
tion in April, 1870, the following officers were 
elected : Newton Connor, trustee ; J. L. Will- 
iams, clerk; Calvin Tracy, treasurer; G. P. 
Peters and G. J. Connor, justices of the peace; 
William Hanson and W. F. Hamman, con- 
stables. Within the next two months all of 
the territory, excepting township 32, range 19, 
v/hich had theretofore been embraced in La- 
bette township, was detached therefrom, and 
formed into other municipal townships. All 
the officers last elected resided within the ter- 
ritory thus detached, which left Labette town- 
ship without any officers or organization. The 
last of June or fore part of July, 1870, a 
meeting of the citizens was held on the prem- 
ises of John Alspaw, on the southwest quarter 
of section 15, and the • following persons se- 
lected for township officers: Calvin Tracy, 
trustee; John Caldwell, clerk; William Col- 
lins, treasurer; William Hamman and Silas 
Rich, justices of the peace; John J. Miles and 
George Tracy, constables. It was decided to 
ask that the name of the township be changed 
from Labette to Mound. On July 11, 1870, 
the action of this meeting was presented to the 
commissioners. The request for a change of 
name for the township was refused, as the 
board considered they had no authority to 
change the name of the township. The of- 
ficers selected at the citizens' meeting were ap- 
pointed in part, and some of the offices seem 
to have been left vacant. 

The settlement of this township com- 
menced early in the spring of 1866. The first 
person whom I have been able to trace to this 

township is David C. Lowe, who settled on the 
southeast quarter of section 34, and about the 
same time James Springer on the northeast 
quarter of the same section, and William 
Springer, Jr., on the southeast quarter of sec- 
tion 2'j. After these the following settlements 
were made: James Shelledy, John V. and 

James Lewis, Latham, Enos Reed, 

James F. Molesworth, William Keiger, and 
Ed. Mercer. In June A. W. Richardson 
bought from William Springer, Jr., the claim 
on which he had settled, paying therefor $400. 
Mr. Springer had at the time some four or 
five acres broken out and planted to corn and 
garden truck. Rev. G. W. Richardson at the 
same time bought from Mr. Shelledy his claim 
to the northwest quarter of section 27, paying 
therefor $50. In December of this year G. P. 
Peters settled on the southwest quarter of sec- 
tion 36, and John Elliott on the southeast quar- 
ter of the same section. In the fall of 1867 
Dr. W. J. Conner made his settlement in this 
township, and commenced the practice of his 


On July 4, 1867, the first celebration in the 
township was held, on the claim of David C. 
Lowe. Wagon-boxes were turned upside down 
for tables; Samuel Cherry read the Declara- 
tion of Independence, and Elihu Greene de- 
livered the oration. The drinking water was 
cooled with ice which G. P. Peters procured 
at Oswego. 

The first business in the township was a 
store conducted by William and John Conner. 
It was located on section 35, which had been 
selected for the site of Neola, and was opened 
in the spring of 1868. Early in 1867 G. P. 



Peters' commenced running a blacksmith shop 
at his home, and in the spring of 1868 built a 
shop at Neola, on section 35. There was no 
other business aside from farming until La- 
bette was started, in 1870. 


Township 32, range 20, originally formed 
a part of Labette township, and was detached 
therefrom and organized into a municipal 
township on May 20, 1870, on the petition of 
Enos Reed and 51 other citizens. The follow- 
ing officers were appointed : Samuel Lewis, 
treasurer; William R. Williams, clerk; R. W. 
Campbell, constable; Samuel T. Cherry was 
recommended for appointment as justice of the 


The commissioners made an order on July 
27th, on the petition of T. D. Bickham and 68 
other residents of the township, restraining 
stock from running at large in the night-time 
for five years, excepting during the months of 
January and February. 


In 1868 the Methodists commenced holding 
services at the house of James F. Molesworth, 
on section 8 ; the ministers in charge of the 
Oswego circuit preached here. 


There seems to be no dispute about Sam- 
uel J. Short being the first white settler in this 
township. It is said that he had located here 
before the war, and was driven off by the rebel 
Indians, and I am disposed to think that this 

is correct; but I shall only refer to his settle- 
ment in the summer of 1865. He came, prob- 
ably the latter part of July, or early in August, 
and located on the southeast quarter of section 
22, on the east side of the Neosho. During 
that fall a number of parties made settlement 
in the township, and of these I have learned 
the following names: Granville Reeves and 
William White came there the fore part of 
October, and located on section 34. On Octo- 
ber 1 8th Charles E. Simons and his brother, 
Benjamin F. Simons, arrived, and located, the 
former on the southwest quarter of section 4 
and the latter on the northwest quarter of sec- 
tion 9. Charles Simons at once went back 
and brought his family, arriving with them on 
his claim November i8th. John and William 
Olford and Andrew Hammond also arrived in 
October. In November Nathan D. Tower set- 
tled on the southwest quarter of section 2y, but 
the next summer moved to the southeast 
quarter of section 30. Samuel Dunham lo- 
cated on section 29; Nelson Shipley on section 
28; Charles Stewart on section 27; Samuel 
Coffield on section 27; Samuel and Jona- 
than \\'ilcox on section 16, the former on the 
east and the latter on the west side of the 
river ; John Modisett on section 4. In Decem- 
ber John Halford settled on the southwest 
quarter of section 16, and Mr. Lee on section 
33. On December 24th Julius S. Waters ar- 
rived, and camped on Mr. Simon's claim, but 
soon thereafter located on section 33, in 
Neosho township; subsequently, however, he 
came back, and was for a long time a resi- 
dent of Montana township. It will thus be 
seen that at the close of 1865 the township 
had quite a body of settlers, most of whom 
became permanent residents, and several of 
whom are still residing there. 

Of those who came in 1866 I shall only 


attempt to mention a few. Dr. D. D. Mc- 
Grath settled on the southwest quarter of sec- 
tion 4 ; Nehemiah Sage on the northwest quar- 
ter of section 8 ; Uriah Davis on the southwest 
quarter of section 7 ; Frank and Albert Brockus 
on the northeast quarter of section 20; R. S. 
Cornish on the southwest quarter of section 
21; Robert Haggard on section 30; Bergen 
Van Ness on the northeast quarter of section 
16; Alfred W. Jones on the northeast quarter 
of section 17. In December John S. Ander- 
son located on the southwest quarter of sec- 
tion 8; Vincent Anderson on the southeast 
quarter of section 6; and Terry Anderson on 
the northeast quarter of section 7. 

About the first of February, 1867, the An- 
derson brothers brought a sawmill and located 
it upon C. E. Simons' claim, on section 4, and 
l3y the middle of the month had it in opera- 
tion. From the lumber sawed here it is claimed 
the first frame house in the county was built. 


At quite an early day R. S. Cornish put 
up a sorghum mill on his place, and for a 
number of years has carried on quite an ex- 
tensive business in making sorghum for him- 
self and his neighbors. He also raises a great 
many melons. 


Montana township was laid ofif as it now 
exists at the time of dividing the county into 
precincts prior to its first election. There is 
no record of the formation of this township 
prior to November 21, 1867, when in the di- 

vision of the county into townships it was or- 
dered that "Montana township No. 2 shall in- 
clude town 32, range 21." George Bennett, 
who resided in Montana township, was ap- 
pointed justice of the peace June 8, 1866, by 
the Governor, and was the first civil officer in 
the county. I can find no record in any way 
referring to its officers for 1867, but it is prob- 
able A. W. Jones was its first trustee. At 
the election held April 5, 1868, C. B. Wood- 
ford was elected trustee ; T. M. Brockus, clerk ; 
D. Shultz, treasurer; Henry M. Minor and 
James Livesay, justices of the peace; John 
Livesay and Jonathan Wilcox, constables ; and 
A. Warlow, road overseer. 


The first settlers in Oswego township were 
Austin T. Dickerman and Samuel W. Col- 
lins, who located on section 31, Mr. Dickerman 
on the northwest quarter, and Mr. Collins on 
the southwest quarter, on July 15, 1865. In 
August Jabez Zink settled on the northwest 
quarter of section 30, and in September Norris 
Harrer on section 19. The next settlement 
in the township was on what is now the town- 
site of Oswego, and is spoken of in connection 
with the history of Oswego city. 

In Xo\-ember, 1865', D. M. Clover and C. 
C. Clover rode ponies from Kansas City, cross- 
ing the Neosho at Trotter's ford, and arriving 
at Little Town about the middle of the month. 
There they found Clinton Rexford and N. P. 
Elsbree encamped, but no start yet made to- 
ward the erection of any building. They 
looked over the country for a few days, and 
on November 20, 1866, took four claims — one- 
for each of them, and one each for D. W. 
Clover and John Clover. D. M. Clover's. 



claim was located on the southeast quarter of 
section 10; C. C. Clover the northeast quarter 
of section 15. In taking his claim C. C. Clover 
had in view the establishment of a mill, and 
selected this place as affording the best water 
power he was able to find along the river. 
About the first of December they started back 
for their families, provisions, and material. 
D. M. Clover went only as far as Fort Scott, 
where he bought oxen and wagons, with which 
he returned to their claims and commenced 
getting out logs for houses. C. C. Clover went 
back to Iowa, where he purchased material for 
a sawmill and laid in a supply of groceries 
and provisions. 

In November or December, 1865, about the 
time the Clovers located, W. C. Watkins set- 
tled on section 4, and two of the Kingsbury 
boys located in the southwest part of the 


In January 1866, C. C. Clover and his 
brother, John R. Clover, together with H. A. 
Victor and one or two others, started from 
Iowa for this county, having three wagons 
with two horses each. They left Oskaloosa, 
Iowa, about the middle of January, and got 
to Oswego about the loth of February. They 
found snow all the way down to Kansas City, 
but from there down to Oswego had pleasant 
weather and good roads. D. M. Clover had 
already commenced the construction of houses 
on each of the claims. That season Mr. Clover 
commenced the construction of a dam across 
the Neosho at a point some distance above the 
present dam, and about where the river makes 
the bend to the east. He did not succeed in 
getting his mill in operation until the fore part 
of 1868. 

In the spring of 1866 John Clover went 

back to Iowa, and in July of that year again 
arrived in Oswego, having with him his fa- 
ther and mother, D. W. Clover and wife, 

James Stice, Wiley Jackson, Mason, 

John Burgess and David Stanfield. They lo- 
cated in the southeastern part of the township, 
some of them on the river and some on the 
prairie. On August 6th Cloyd G. Draught 
settled on the southwest quarter of section 34, 
and in September Simeon Holbrook on section 
3 and Randal Bagby on section 5, and in Oc* 
tober Lewis W. Crain on section 4. On No- 
vember 9th William Herbaugh and Moses B. 
Jacobs arrived; the former located north and 
the latter south of the town-site. 


About November i, 1867, C. Montague 
settled on the southwest quarter of section 5, 
and on November nth F. Swanwick bought 
the claim of W. C. Watkins and located 011 
section 4. 


On July 4, 1866, the settlers of this part 
of the county assembled at Oswego and held 
their first celebration. 

Capt. Clover had some of the machinery 
here for his mill in the spring of 1866, but it 
took so long to build the dam across the 
Neosho that he did not get it running till 1868. 
The first mill to be put in operation in the 
township was brought here November 9, 1866, 
by M. B. Jacobs, but he did not get it started 
till the spring of 1867. It was located on his 
claim, just south of town. It was thought 
better to haul the logs from the woods to the 


mill on the prairie and thus have the lumber 
where it could be procured easil}', than to lo- 
cate the mill in the woods and thus cause the 
lumber to be hauled out over the muddy bot- 


This township from the first has had the 
same territory as is now included within its 
limits. It was organized at the time of the 
division of the county into precincts for the 
first election. The first official record of its 
organization now to be found is the order of 
the commissioners made November 21, 1867, 
dividing the county into townships, in which 
they ordered that "Oswego township, No. 3, 
shall include town 33, R. 21." The first of- 
ficer in this township was C. H. Talbott, who 
was appointed justice of the peace by the Gov- 
ernor in the fall of 1866. He seems to have 
appointed Andy Kaho constable, to serve what- 
ever process was issued by him. These were 
probably the only civil officers of the township 
prior to its organization. I have not been able 
to learn the names of all the officers who were 
elected in April, 1867. D. W. Clover was one 
of the justices of the peace elected at that 
time, and probably J. F. Newlon was the 
other; Andy Kaho was elected constable. On 
April 5, 1868, the following officers were 
elected: R. W. Wright, trustee; S. Reardon, 
clerk; Norris Harrer, treasurer; R. J. Elliott 
and J. F. Newlon, justices of the peace; A. 
Kaho and F. D. Howe, constables; Ephriam 
Shanks, road overseer. 


As far as I have been able to learn, but 
two parties had settled in this township prior 
to 1866. Francis Wall settled on the south- 

west quarter of section 10, and Mr. Allen on 
the northwest quarter of section 13, in the fall 
of 1865. 

During the year 1866 a number of parties 
came into the township. Early in the spring 
William Springer settled oa the southwest 
quarter of section 2, M. V. B. Coffin on the 
northwest quarter of section 3, and William 
Cline on the northwest quarter of section 4. 
James Logan came in March, and located on 
the northwest quarter of section 11, and James 
M. Logan on the southeast quarter of the 
same section. In ]\Iay Charles Wadsack set- 
tled on the northwest quarter of section 12, 
and Frederick and Ernest Wadsack in the same 
vicinity. In June John Richardson bought 
Mr. Springer's claim for $200, to which he 
moved from the claim taken in Liberty town- 
ship, and where he has since made his home. 

Among those who made settlement during 
1867 were W. S. Park, James Dike, S. H. 
Spurr and Charles Kelso. Mr. Spurr bought 
J. M. Logan's claim, and the latter settled on 
the northeast quarter of section 16. 


M. V. B. Coffin was the first blacksmith 
in the township; he opened a shop at his home 
soon after settling there in the spring of 1866. 
He had been a soldier with Kit Carson, was a 
good workman, and had a good run of busi- 
ness. He died in January, 1867; Mr. Peters 
bought his tools. In 1867 J. M. Logan con- 
structed a wooden mill for grinding cane, of 
which he and his neighbors raised quite large 
patches. He made a large amount of sorghum 


In the original division of the county, what 
is known as Fairview township formed a part 


of Labette. On the application of A. S. 
Spaulding, Frank Williams, J. R. Sweet and 
some 50 other electors, the commissioners, on 
April 26, 1870, made an order organizing town- 
ship 33, range 20, into a municipal township 
with the name of Fairview, and fixing the 
voting-place of the township at the office of 
Dr. A. S. Spaulding, on section 21. The 
following officers were appointed to ser\-e until 
April, 1871 : I. \\\ Patrick trustee; \\'. 
W. Babbitt, clerk; A. S. Spaulding, treasurer; 
W. H. Umbarger and John Robinson, con- 
stables. A. S. Potter and James Paxon were 
recommended for appointment as justices of 
the peace. 

On May 20, 1870, the commissioners, on a 
petition therefor, made an order that stock be 
not allowed to run at large in the night-time, 
for the term of three years. 


W. F. Hamman was the first settler in 
" this township. He erected his house upon the 
northwest quarter of section 2 in April, 1869. 
Soon thereafter Mr. Moray located upon the 
northeast quarter of section 11. In July E. A. 
Wait and his brother, A. H. Wait, settled on 
section 12, and Henry C. McClelland on the 
southwest quarter of section 14. A little later 
in the season the northwest part of the town- 
ship was settled. Benjamin H. Greer, George 
Greer, James Armstrong and Lewis C. Hill 
were the first settlers in this part of the town- 


In the fall of 1869 A. W. King, of Osage 
township, commenced preaching at the houses 

of Benjamin Greer and Lewis Hill. Services 
were kept up at private houses with more or 
i less regularity until the Pioneer schoolhouse 
was- built, when they were held there. They 
were principally conducted by Methodist 
preachers in charge of the Timber Hill circiut. 


When Mr. JNIoray and his wife were camped 
upon their claim above referred to, before they 
had their house erected, the first child in the 
township was born to them. On October i, 

1869, W. F. Hamman lost his son Henry, 
which was the first death in the township. 
The first marriage in the township was that of 
George R. Greer and Mary A. Hill. 


Mount Pleasant township was originally 
a part of Labette township. On May 20, 

1870, G. W. Moray and 60 other electors pe- 
titioned for the organization of township 33, 
range 19, into a municipal township, which 
petition the board granted and named the 
township Mount Pleasant. Thereupon the 
board appointed the following officers : H. C. 
McClelland, trustee; Walter Downing, clerk; 
Henry Storyj treasurer; Florence Hamman 
and C. E. Woodin, constables. Ezra A. Wait 
and John Hamblin were recommended for jus- 
tices of the peace, and they were afterward 


On June 23, 1870, on a pt^tition of its citi- 
zens the board made an order restraining the 
running at large of stock in the night-time for 
a period of five years. 



On January 23, 1867, Alexander and Mil- 
ton Duncan located on section 7, township 
34, range 18, and were the first settlers in 
what is now Canada township. A little later 
in the season Jonathan Hill settled on section 
28, Gresham Gokey on section 29, and some- 
time during the year John Nellis, J. Roberts, 
George Mays and Lewis Scott settled in the 
township. John McNeal came in October, 

1868. I do not find the names of other set- 
tlers prior to those who came in the spring of 

1869. During this year quite a large immi- 
gration came into the township, among whom 
may be mentioned H. Hedemann, D. M. Pitt, 
J. F. Walford, H. A. Linn, William WaUers, 
David Ross, Howard Phenis and sons, John 
Phillips, Mrs. Mary Price, Ola Olson. 

Mr. Phenis and his sons had a shingle- 
mill, in 1869, on section 32, from which they 
supplied the settlers in that neighborhood with 
shingles for their cabins. 

The first child born in the township was 
Milton Duncan, son of Alexander Duncan, 
on February 12, 1868. The first death was 
that of an old man named Munk. 


In the absence of any record I take the 
statement of Mr. Dickerman, who was then 
county clerk, that, of the nine precincts into 
which the county was divided, in March, 1867, 
by the commissioners appointed for its organ- 
ization, the southwest part was called Pump- 
kin Creek. No election was held therein at 
the first election for county officers. When 
the commissioners met and organized, on June 
5, 1867, they made an order for the organiza- 
tion of the two west precincts, in which it was 

provided that "Canada township shall include 
33 and 34, range 18, and the west half of the 
33 and 34, range 19. and as far west as the 
county line." This is the first official record 
we have relating to this township, or giving 
it a name. It was not until October 21, 1867, 
that a voting-precinct was designated for the 
township; at that time it was fixed at J. M. 
Duncan's. On November 21, 1867, the com- 
missioners made a new order dividing the 
county into townships, in which it was ordered 
that "Canada township, No. 9, shall include 
town 33 and 34,, R. 17 and 18." On April 6, 
1868, the north half of township 33, in ranges 
17 and 18, Avas attached to Osage township. 
The first election in the township was held No- 
vember 5, 1867, at which J. R. Shippey was 
elected trustee, J. M. Duncan and G. W. Mays, 
justices of the peace; John Nellis and John 
Scoville, constables. The record does not show 
who the opposing candidates were; but the 
vote was a tie on justices between Mr. Mays 
and some one else, and Mr. Mays was suc- 
cessful in the casting of lots for the office. By 
an order made April 14, 1869, township 35, 
ranges 17 and 18, was attached to this town- 


On May 27, 1871, on the petition of E. 
B. Baldwin and 42 others, the commissioners- 
made an order restraining stock from run- 
ning at large in the night-time for a term of 
two years. 


The first settler in what is now Howard 
township was John Kennedy, who located on 
the southwest quarter of section 12, township- 
35, range 17, in 1867. 


The settlement of this township fairly com- 
menced in 1869, and among those who located 
here that year are the following: W. H. 
Godwin, on the northeast quarter of section 
3; Clinton Hawley, on section 2; Jesse Mc- 
Clintock, on the northeast quarter of section 
1 1 ; E. R. Lee, on the southeast quarter of sec- 
tion 33 ; Lee Loverage, on the southwest quar- 
ter of section 33 ; W. S. Getzendaner, on sec- 
tion 13, range 17; H. H. Long, on the north- 
east quarter of section 5. 

In March, 1870, E. B. Baldwin located upon 
the northeast quarter of section 2, and during 
the same season settlements were made by Will- 
iam Blackford on the southwest quarter of sec- 
tion 4, Scott on the southeast quarter 

of section 24, B. W. Harwood on the north- 
west quarter of section 10, George McKee on 
the southeast quarter of section 10, David Mc- 
Kee on the southwest quarter of section 14, J. 
M. Hart on the northwest quarter of section 11. 
Dana H. Fuller and Aldin Fuller on section 
4, Banks Hall and John W. Hall on section 
13, D. Smallwood on section i, Frank Pfiester 
on section 7. 

On March 5, 1871, W. J. Millikin took the 
southeast quarter of section 22, and sometime 
during the season, some early in the spring 
and some not till fall, settlements were made 
by P. B. Clark on the northwest quarter of 
section' 24, Samuel Smith on the northwest 
quarter of section 12, James Bennett on the 
northeast quarter of section 20, Walter Ben- 
nett on the northwest quarter of section 29, 
William Reasor on the southeast quarter, John 
Reasor on the northwest quarter, and George 
H. Goodwin on the northeast quarter of sec- 
tion 27. James Steel took the southwest quar- 
• ter, William Steel the northwest quarter. Boon 
Thompson the southeast quarter, and J. K. 

Russell the northeast quarter of section 23; 
John Vance the southwest quarter and Chris- 
tian Lieb the northeast quarter of section 24; 
Lincoln Clark, and William and John High 
section i. W. M. Mabrey located on the 
southwest quarter of section 11, in range 17. 


The territory of which I am now speak- 
ing was a part of Canada township until after 
the spring election of 1872. At that election 
the opposing candidates for justice of the 
peace were J. M. Hart and H. H. Long, both 
residing in what is now Howard township. 
The vote between them being a tie, lots were 
cast resulting in the choice of Mr. Hart, who 
thereby became the first officer of the new 
township. On April 5, 1872, E. B. Baldwin 
presented the petition of himself and 81 other 
electors asking the commissioners for the for- 
mation of a new township, embracing all the 
territory in ranges 17 and 18 lying south of 
the line running east and west through the 
middle of township 34, leaving three tiers of 
sections in township 34 in the old township, 
and putting three tiers of section in town- 
ship 34 and all of fractional township 35 in the 
new township. This prtition was granted, 
and the order of the commissioners made creat- 
ing said territory into a municipal township, 
which they named Howard in honor of the 
county clerk. Thereupon the following of- 
ficers were appointed for the township thus 
organized: E. B. Baldwin, trustee; William 
J. Millikin. clerk; Joseph Buckley, treasurer; 
J. J. Breeding, constable. Mr. Buckley failed 
to qualify, and the commissioners soon there- 
after appointed William Blackford treasurer 
in his place. ., 


There have been several places in the town- 
ship at different times where small stores have 
been conducted. Capt. J. W. Hall started a 
store on his premises in the summer of 1870, 
which he conducted only a short time. W. H. 
Godwin and F. W. Noblett kept a small stock 
of groceries at the Dora postoffice. The town 
of Willeyville, afterward called Deerton, while 
it existed was in this township, and the busi- 
ness houses in operation there have been spoken 
of in connection with that name. 

John ?kIcClintock and Nettie Smallwood, 
on December 22, 1872, were joined in mar- 
riage, being the first couple married in the 
township, and the marriage of H. F. Jones and 
Mary McClintock followed some two or three 
weeks later. Among the first births in the 
township were sons in the families of W. J. 
McClintock and D. H. McKee, in the summer 
of 1870, and on August 15, 1870, a daughter, 
Julia A., to Colonel Baldwin and wife. A son 
of G. B. McKee was injured by falling into 
a well, from which he died; this was the first 
death in the township, and I understand that 
B. W. Harwood, who was murdered on Au- 
gust 15, 1872, was the second person who died 
in the township. 


The first party to locate in Elm Grove 
township was William Bowen, who took his 
claim on sections 3 and 10 early in the spring 
of 1867. the old settlers say, although no one 
whom I have met is able to fix the date of his 
settlement. Probablv the next settlers in the 

township were R. P. and Amas Totten, who 
located on section 10, as it is thought, in the 
summer of 1867. A few parties made settle- 
ment here in 1868. Madison Sharp came in 
June and located on the northeast quarter of 
section 13, although he did not bring his fam- 
ily until the following February. At the same 
time Thomas Sharp located on the southeast 
quarter of the same section. In 1869 many more 
families came in. C. M. Keeler located on 
same section with William Bowen, Daniel 
Mclntyre on the southwest quarter of section 
12, Joseph Gray on the northeast quarter of 
section 3, A. J. Moler on the southwest quar- 
ter of section 13, James Woodville on section 
12, in township 35. Wesley Faurot came July 
29th this year, and settled in the extreme 
southeast corner of the township ; Harvey Jones 
also settled in the southern part of the town- 
ship. In July C. B. Pratt took the northwest 
quarter of section 3, in township 35, and 
opened thereon the first store in the township ; 
he was appointed postmaster of the postoffice 
at that point, which was called Ripon. In 
October Dr. D. P. Lucas settled on the north- 
west quarter of section 12, in township 35; 
and during the season Thomas Summerfield 
settled in the same locality, on the southeast 
quarter of section 9. Probably still more fam- 
ilies whose names I have not mentioned came 
in this year. The settlement of the south- 
western part of the township did not com- 
mence until the spring of 1870. In June 
Peter Shu felt found a small house on the 
southwest quarter of section 20 which had 
been put there by some one who had left. He 
took possession of this and made claim to tliis 
quarter, afterward paying the man for his 
house. Harrison Sword settled on the south- 
west quarter of section 30, A. J. Lots on the 
1 southwest quarter of section 7, Peter Rhodes 


on section i8. H. H. Lieli and R. W. Lieb also 
in that vicinity. During tiie season Owen 
Wimmer and sons located on section 29, but 
did not bring their families until the spring of 
1871 ; Alfred Elliott located on the northwest 
quarter of section 30. In 1871, Junius, Peter 
and Lewis Goodwin settled on section 31. 


By the division first made, what is now 
Elm Grove township was a part of Canada and 
Hackberry townships. After November 21, 
1867, until its organization by itself, it formed 
a part of Hackberry township only. On July 
27, 1870, W. H. Bowen and 55 others hav- 
ing petitioned therefor, the commissioners 
made an order for the organization of town- 
ships 34 and 35, in range 19, into a municipal 
township, with the name of Elm Grove; and 
on July 29th appointed the following officers : 
D. Mclntyre, trustee; John Lane, clerk; John 
Freeman, treasurer; Charles Ballard and S. 
Bentley, constables; and recommended W. H. 
Bowen and T. H. Noslen for appointment as 
justices of the peace. 

On April 12, 1871, upon a petition of its 
citizens, the commissioners ordered that stock 
be prohibited from running at large in the 
night-time for the term of three years. 


This township had the misfortune not to 
be named in the apportionment of 1871, and it 
was not until 1873 that it was made a part of 
any legislative district. 


In the fall of 1869 James M. Woodfill died, 
and was the first person to be buried in the 
cemetery then started on section 12, in the 
south part of the township. His wife Sarah 
soon followed him, and was the second to be 
interred in this cemetery. 


A few parties settled in this township in 
the fall of 1865. James Moss, Robert Hast- 
ings and Mr. Cawthorn located on section i, 
Mr. Henderson on section 12, and Mr. Chand- 
ler near by. A few more parties came in the 
following year, and among them Mr. Red- 
field, who settled on the northwest quarter of 
section i, Luman Reed on the northeast, quar- 
ter of section 25, and Robert Gill on section 
22. Many 'settlers came in 1867, commencing 
early in the spring and continuing to arrive 
during the summer. In June Gilbert A. and 
|. T. Cooper located on the south half of sec- 
tion 14, and a1x3ut the same time Alexander 
Bishop settled on the northwest quarter and 
Jerry Strickler on the northeast quarter of 
the same section ; William Newcomb settled on 
section 11, and Henry G. Pore on section 12. 
In July George W. Franklin and L. C. How- 
ard located on section 2; William Sullivan, 
Robert Johnson, Abner DeCou, Benjamin 
Hiatt, James Sloan, Walter Pratt and Caleb 
Phillips came sometime during the year. It 
is possible that some of the parties named came 
in 1866 instead of 1867. Elder Cooper set- 
tled on section 8 early in 1868, and was the 
first Baptist minister in that vicinity. In Oc- 
tober William Hannigan bought the northwest 
fiuarter of section 9 from Cal. Watkins, who 


had taken it sometime previous thereto. About 
the same time Martin Jackson, Aaron Young 
and Mordecai Ramsey came in. In February, 
1869, D. C. Constant settled on the southeast 
quarter of section 18; on March 9th G. W. 
Jenkins on the northeast quarter of section 33 ; 
and in July J. L. Jones on the northwest quar- 
ter of section 5, township 35. 


In the first division of the county, Hack- 
berry township included township 34, range 
20, and the east half of range 19. By the 
new division, on November 21, 1867, it was 
ordered that "Hackberry township. No. 5, shall 
include town 34. R. 19 and 20." On April 14. 
1869, township 35, lying in these ranges, was 
attached as a part of the township. The first 
election in the township was held at the time 
of the election of the first county officers, April 
22, 1867, but there is no record of the result. 
At the election held April 7, 1868, the follow- 
ing officers were elected : G. W. Franklin, 
trustee; William Johnson, clerk; H. G. Pore, 
treasurer; L. C. Howard and D. M. Bender, 
justices of the peace: D. Day and William 
Hiatt, constables; and William E. Pratt, road 


October 4, 1869, the residents having pe- 
titioned therefor, the board ordered that stock 
be not allowed to run at large in the night- 
time for the period of five years. 


The first settlement of this township has 
been spoken of in another part of this work. 
It may be said to have been the first part of 

the county settled by the whites, but the set- 
tlement was entirely broken up in 1863. The 
settlement as it now exists commenced in the 
fall of 1865. Among those who came that sea- 
son were Thomas King, who settled on the 
northeast quarter of section 18, William Busby 
on the northwest quarter of section 17, Will- 
iam Puitt on the southeast quarter of section 
7, Zephaniah Woolsey on the southeast quar- 
ter of section 27 ; a man by the name of Baker 
and his three sons. Berry, John and William, 
and two sons-in-law, Dotson and Maxwell, 
along Labette Creek on sections 22, 23 and 26 ; 
G. W. Yandel and his sons-in-law, David 
Lewellin and Chas. A. Rankin, came in No- 
vember, 1865, and took claims, but did not 
bring their families until the following spring. 
These parties and also Mr. Yandal's son, Co- 
lumbus, settled on sections 6, 7 and 8. About 
the same time George W. Kingsbury settled on 
section 6. 

During 1866 many parties came into the 
township, some coming early in the spring and 
others later in the season. In the spring the 
Rice brothers, Benjamin, John and James, 
John Green, Orville Thompson, John W. 
Wiley, Gilbert Martin, Samuel Braught, Allen 
Barnes, Mancil Garret, Lorenzo Braught, 
James Smith, and perhaps others, settled in 
the northeastern part of the township north of 
Labette. In May S. R. Southwick settled on 
the northeast quarter of section 29, William 
Shay on the southeast quarter of section 20, 
John Kinney and sons on the northwest quar- 
ter of section 28, George Lane on the south- 
west quarter of section 28, Abraham Ewers 
on the southwest quarter of section 31. In 
June Samuel Gregory settled on the southeast 
quarter of section 26, and in August Mr. Yun- 
ker on the southwest quarter of section 29, 
and Mr. Bedicker on the northeast quarter of 


section 32. On August 12th Franklin Asl>ell 
bouglit the northeast quarter of section 18 
from Thomas King and became a permanent 
settler thereon. On October loth David U. 
Watson settled on the southwest quarter of 
section 21, and John N. Watson on the south- 
east quarter of section 29; about the same 
time Marshall J. Lee settled north of Labette 
Creek, Milton Helm on the northeast quarter 
of section 29, and Riley Hawkins on the south- 
west quarter of section 20; Stephen Bright 
bought the southwest quarter of section 7 from 
Woolsey; John and Cass Steel settled on sec- 
tion 8, Salina Grant on the northwest quarter 
of section 30. 

On January i, 1867, Moses Powers lo- 
"Cated on the northwest quarter of section 21 ; 
in April Isaac Butterworth bought the north- 
west quarter of section 30 from Salina Grant, 
and made his home thereon. 

The first store in the township, aside from 
those located in Chetopa, was kept by Orville 
Thompson, a little north of Labette Creek, on 
the east road leading from Oswego to Chetopa; 
it was started in the spring of 1866. Soon 
after this the town of Labette was started, on 
the Neosho. 

For many years a large part of the land 
south of the Labette was covered with water 
so great a portion of the year that it was 
practically of little use. In 1882 a ditch was 
dug, draining this swamp into the Neosho, 
thereby making a large tract of land capable 
of cultivation. 


In April, 1874, John F. Hill deeded three 
acres of land in section 9, on which the Pleas- 
ant Valley Cemetery was laid out; George 
Gennoa was the first person buried therein. 
This cemetery has been nicely improved and 
quite extensively used. 


The commissioners appointed for the or- 
ganization of the county in laying it off into 
precincts constituted township 34, range 21, 
a township, which they named Chetopa. The 
first official reference we have to this township 
is on July 2, 1867, when it was "Ordered, 
that the township called Chetopa, the south- 
ern township of Labette county, l3e changed 
according to the request of the petitioners, to 
be called Richland township hereafter." On 
November 21, 1867, iii dividing the county 
ihto townships, the commissioners ordered that 
"Richland township, No. 4 shall include town 
34, R. 21." While we have no record show- 
in the names of the persons who were elected 
officers at the election held April 22, 1867, we 
soon thereafter find J. N. Watson acting as 
justice of the peace. He resigned on October 
23, and on November 19 the commissioners 
appointed G. H. English, and two days later 
they also appointed William H. Reed justice 
of the peace. On April 7, 1868, the following 
officers were elected: Robert Steel, trustee; 
R. B. Wallan, clerk; Daniel Ouinby, treasurer; 
George Kincade and B. B. Baker, justices of 
the peace; J. W. Wiley and A. P. Kinkade, 
constables; Allison Hasty, road overseer. On 
April 14, 1869, an order of the commissioners 
was made attaching township 35, range 21, 
to Richland township. 





No less than three towns christened La- 
bette have been started in this county. The 
first of the three was located in the fall of 
1866, by Gilbert Martin, on the banks of the 
Neosho, in section 14, Richland township. In 
1867 Mr. Martin put in a sawmill, to which 
was attached a set of corn buhrs. The mill 
got quite a trade at this point. A store build- 
ing was erected by L. D. Bovee, for Mr. Smith, 
who put in a stock of groceries. This build- 
ing was afterward sold to School District No. 
3, and was moved from its location on the 
town-site to the public road, where it now 
stands, and is still in use as a school-house. 
Another building was erected, for R. G. Tiles- 
ton, who put in quite a large amount of gro- 
ceries. In January, 1868, Martin, Tileston 
and Bovee put up quite a quantity of ice fully 
eight inches thick. With the cold weather of 
the spring and winter of 1867 and 1868 the 
hopes of this town vanished, and during the 
spring all of its business was moved away. 

The second town of this name was located 
on parts of sections 20 and 21, in Richland 
township, just south of Labette Creek. In 
May, 1868, a number of parties, among whom 
were G. A. Cooper, R. G. Tileston, L. D. 
Bovee, Allen Barnes, Gilbert Martin and Isaac 
Butterworth, formed themselves into a com- 

pany for the purpose of laying out this town, 
and on June 18 their charter was filed in the 
office of the Secretary of State. Mr. Tiles- 
ton put up quite a large two-story building, 
and removed his stock of groceries from the 
former town of Labette, lying to the northeast 
of this, and added thereto so that he had quite 
a respectable store. Moses Powers had a 
blacksmith shop, and quite a number of parties 
built small dwelling-houses; so that during the 
summer of 1868 there were probably 12 to 20 
buildings of all descriptions on the town-site. 
The town was' also known by the name of 
Soresco as well as by the name of Labette. 
Its proprietors supposed that they were in the 
line where the Mi K. & T. Ry. would neces- 
sarily be located. With the close of 1868 the 
prospects of an important town being built up 
at this point disappeared. Mr. Tileston be- 
came interested in Chetopa, to which point he 
moved his stock of groceries, leaving his store 
building, however, as a watch-tower in the 
desert to mark the spot which had been the 
scene of so many bright anticipations. 


The town of Labette having been started 
in the southeastern part of Liberty township 
it was thought by some that a more desirable 
location for a town would be farther up La- 


bette Creek, and in May, 1870, J. F. Newlon, 
E. K. Currant, Peterson Cherry, W. H. Por- 
ter and a number of others became incor- 
porated, the charter being filed June 20, 1870, 
and a town-site was selected upon the west bank 
of the Labette, below the mouth of Bachelor 
Creek, on sections 9 and 16, township 32, 
range 20. But few houses were ever erected 
on the town-site. William H. and John I. 
Sipple put up a fair store building and opened 
up a 'Store. E. K. Currant put up a building 
and opened a branch of his main store, which 
was at Montana. There were two or three 
other business houses. In November following 
the town was moved to Parsons. 


This town was located in four counties, 
but principally in Neosho county. It em- 
braced, however, a part of section 3, township 
31, range 21, in Labette county. On Decem- 
ber 23, 1867, a paper purporting to be a char- 
ter for the incorporation of the town was filed 
in the office of the Secretary of State, but 
there was no pretense of complying with the 
law. On January 23, 1868, a new charter was 
filed. Among the incorporators were Will- 
iam Logan, G. D. Dement, David Evans and 
Samuel Correll. After the first two or three 
years there was little left to indicate what 
this town once was. 


On January 30, 1869, the charter for the 
town of Cherryville, incorporating James H. 
Beggs, James McMains, John Oliphant and 
others, was filed in the office of the Secretary 
of State. The town was to be located on the 
south half of section 12, township 32, range 

17. The proprietors seem to ha\'e soon be- 
come satisfied that they were not going t(j be 
able to build up a town at this point, and con- 
cluded to abandon it. 


A town with this name was proposed to 
be located on section 13, township 32, range 
17, in Osage township. R. D. Hartsorn, John 
W. Claspill, W. O. Hartsorn, Lionel A, Whit- 
ney and Samuel C. Hockett were charter 
members of the town company. The charter 
was filed with the Secretary of State June 16, 


The above name was chosen for a town that 
was to have been located on the northeast 
quarter of section 30, in Osage township, if 
the line of the L. L. & G. R. R. had run 
through that quarter as it was expected to. 
Mr. Kingsbury, one of the surveying party, 
assured the owners of claims in that vicinity 
that the road would surely be located on that 
line. Perhaps it would have been had not 
the general course of the road been changed 
so as to pass through Montgomery instead of 
Labette county. On the strength of these as- 
surances a town company was organized, of 
which W. H. Carpenter was president and L. 
F. Dick, secretary. When the line of the rail- 
road was located west of them the project of 
building this town was abandoned. 


A company consisting of Alexander W. 
King, T^Iahlon A. King, J. H. Beatty and 
others was incorporated April 12, 1869, for 
the purpose of laying off the town of Timber 


Hill. It was located on the south half of the 
northeast quarter and the north half of the 
southeast quarter of section 34, township 31, 
range 18. About the middle of September, 

1869, George W. Blake and William Blake 
opened a store at this place; they continued to 
sell goods till the spring of 1871, when they 
■closed and moved on their farms. 


Joseph McCormick, David Stanfield. John 
A. Helpingstine, Thomas Harrison and Jesse 
Bishop became incorporated February 22, 

1870, for the purpose of laying ofif the town of 
Big Hill, on parts of sections 23 and 24, town- 
ship 32, range 17. 


Was intended to cover 320 acres in section 35, 
township 32, and section 2, township 33, both 
in range 20. Gilbert Martin, John N. Wat- 
son, David C. Lowe, Julius S. Waters, Chas. 
A. Kelso, Benjamin A. Rice and others became 
incorporated for the purpose of laying ofif the 
town. The charter for the same was filed in 
the ofBce of the Secretary of State December 
24, 1867. By the most liberal construction of 
its language it can hardly be said to contain 
any of the statutory requirements for a char- 
ter, but it is probable that this is not the rea- 
son why the town never succeeded in acquir- 
ing any more growth than one store and a 


On September 8, 1869, there was filed in 
the office of Secretary of State a charter in- 
corporating John Elston, John T. Weaver and 

others into the Elston Town Company, for 
the purpose of laying off a town on section 6, 
township 33, range 20. During that summer 
this town had quite a growth. The parties 
composing this company were men of some 
means, who came from Johnson county and 
wanted to build a town nearer the center of 
the county than any other town had then been 
located with the avowed purpose of making 
it the county-seat. They erected quite a large 
hotel and a number of store buildings, and for 
a time had considerable trade, and the town 
seemed to be on the road to prosperity, but its 
growth was of short duration, and in a few 
years not a single building remained to mark 
the site of this once ambitious place. 


Kingston was located on sections 31 and 
32, in township 34, and sections 5 and 6, in 
township 35, range 19. It was started in the 
summer of 1877 by the erection of a flour mill 
by Eastwood & Reamer. Soon after Mr. 
Jones started a blacksmith shop; Thomas 
Bruner put in a drug store; Aaron Humes 
a broom factory; Anderson & Weaver a gen- 
eral merchandise store; C. W. Campbell was 
postmaster, as well as physician; S. E. Ball 
was the only lawyer. In 1879 the engine was 
sold out of the mill, and thereafter was not 
put in again. The place continued more or less 
prosperous until the construction of the rail- 
road through the southern portion of the coun- 
ty, in 1886, when it was abandoned and united 
with Edna. 


Named from the abundance of deer that 
were found in that vicinity by the early set- 
tlers. It was located by the Willie brothers 


on the north half of section 20, township 34, 
range iS, on the line between Howard and 
Canada townships. The first store in Deerton 
was opened in 1880, by Aaron Humes, who 
was soon after appointed postmaster. Charles 
M. Keeler next followed with another store 

of general merchandise. Blacksmith shops, a 
wood-worker and a broom factory were among 
the industries of this town. On the comple- 
tion of the railroad through Howard township, 
in the fall of 1886, the town was all moved 
to Valeda. 



C. H. Kimball, Lee Clark and others filed 
a charter in the office of the Secretary of State 
November 29, 1886, authorizing them to lay 
off a town-site and dispose of lots on the north- 
east quarter of section 8, township 34, range 
18. The plat was filed February 12, 1887, 
acknowledged by Lee Clark, president of the 
town company. There has never been much 
growth — only two or three business houses 
of any kind, and the stock-yards. 


Is a station on the P. & P. Ry., located on the 
northeast quarter of section 27, township 33, 
range 18. This location was formerly called 


Is located on the line of the Parsons & Pacific 
Ry., on sections 16 and 17, in Labette town- 
ship. It was surveyed in August, 1887. The 
first store was started in the spring of 1888, 
by Samuel Jameston. Mrs. Ella B. Wilson 
is proprietor of the town, and has devoted 

much energy to its development and upbuild- 
ing. It has received its principal amount of 
advertising by the distribution of the Wilson- 
ton Journal, which is published 'here. 


Is a station on the Parsons & Pacific Railroad, 
south of Parsons. 


Was laid out by Emanuel Mortimer, on the 
north half of the northeast quarter of section 
25, township 31, range 17. The plat was filed 
January 7, 1883. 


The first house in Dennis was the railroad' 
depot, erected in the fall of 1880. In the 
spring of 1881 William Current put up a store 
building, in which he placed a stock of gro- 
ceries; this was the first store in town. John 
Webb and John Milligan put in another store 
in the spring of 1882, their stock consisting 
of general merchandise. A second stock of 


general merchandise was put in by W. H. 
Thorne, in the fall of 1883. Mr. Thorne also 
put in a corn elevator and shipped grain, and 
put up the first substantial residence house in 
town. Subsequently John Mason put in a 
harness shop, L. Pedan a lumber yard, Wm. 
Cline a drug store, J. L. Wilson a hardware 
store, and Nelson Dunn a livery stable. The 
first hotel was put up by Mr. Acre, in the 
summer of 1885. It was not till December 
21, 1883, that the plat of the town was filed 
in the office of the register of deeds, locating 
the town on sections 14 and 15, on the line of 
the Gulf Railroad, in Osage township. Lee 
Wilson was born to L. J. Wilson and wife 
December 24, 1884, — the first child born in 
town. Two newspapers have been started in 
Dennis, but neither was able to maintain an 
existence, and they were moved away. One 
of the substantial business plants of this town 
is its flouring mill. 


Is a station on the Fort Scott & Gulf Rail- 
road, located on the southeast quarter of section 
20, in Neosho township. It was started just 
after the building of the railroad, and has one 


The plat of this town located it on section 
15, township 31, range 21, and was filed in 
the office of the register of deeds April 30, 
1879. The first house in JNIatthewson was 
built in the spring of 1879, by William Downs; 
in this he had his residence, the store and post- 
office. The next store building was put up by 
G. W. Watson and C. Hamilton, who put in 
a fair stock of goods and did a good business 
until McCune was started, when they moved 

to that town, leaving but one store house in 


1; a station on the "Frisco," located on section 
15, in Fairview township. The only business 
that has been conducted here has been one 
store, owned by J. N. Santee; a blacksmith 
shop, by G. W. Brock; and a part of the time 
H. M. Debolt has run a sawmill, with which 
he has connected a set of corn buhrs, and has 
also been engaged in the grain business. 


Is a station on the "Frisco" Railroad, in Mouna 
Valley township. 


On February 23, 1874, the charter of Ste- 
vens was filed in the office of the Secretary of 
State, incorporating Alfred Large, Jonas Clark, 
L. M. Bedell and others with authority to lo- 
cate a town on sections 33 and 34, township 
34, range 21. The plat was acknowledged 
by R. W. Officer, president of the town com- 
pany, and was filed in March, 1874. A few 
years ago this ]:ilace was incorporated ?s a part 
of the city of Chetopa. 


Is located on the northwest quarter of section 
5, township 35, range 20. In 1869 Mr. Head 
put in a small stock of general merchandise, 
which he continued to sell until the fall of 
1870, when it was closed. Allen McNeal has 
had a blacksmith shop since 1871. George 
Burge opened a store in 1881, which he has 
continued to conduct up to the present time. 



From 1885 to 1887 C. W. Fowler had a store 
in connection with the postoffice. The Metho- 
dists have a church and. cemetery at this point. 


Soon after coming to the county Frank 
Simons brought a small stock of groceries, 
which he commenced selling in his cabin. Early 
in the spring of 1866 he put up a hewed-log 
house on what was thereafter to be the Mon- 
tana town-site, but which had not yet been laid 
off, and in March opened therein a store. This 
was the first building on the town-site, and 
this was the first store in the township. Soon 
thereafter Yates & Fagan built a frame store 
building on the town-'site and put therein a 
stock of groceries. This is said to have been 
the first frame building in the county. Soon 
after this they built a frame residence. The 
next spring Frank Simons built a frame store 
building, into which he moved his stock of 


The Montana Town Company had been 
agreed upon some time previously, but was not 
incorporated until May 28, 1868. Among 
those who were members of the company were 
Levi Seabridge, J. S. Anderson, Henry Minor, 
S. S. Watson, J. S. Waters and D. M. Wat- 
son. S. S. Watson was president and J. S. 
Waters secretary of the town company. The 
town was located on section 8, township 32, 
range 21. 

Abner Furgeson was granted a ferry li- 
cense on July II, 1867, and at once he, in 
connection with Jonah Wilcox, commenced the 
operation of a ferry across the Neosho near 
where it is spanned by the iron bridge. 

In 1868 Henry M. Miner erected a two- 
story building and opened therein the first hotel 
in town. 


D. D. McGrath was the first physician of 
standing to locate here. He was soon followed 
by Dr. Frye, and they in turn by Dr. J. M. 
Mahr, all of whom were good citizens as well 
as good physicians, and did their part toward 
building up the place. Doctors Hall, Gapen, 
Taylor and Keys are among the other physi- 
cians who came to the place. 

In 1870 W. E. Livesay and J. O. Charles 
erected, and in the spring of 1871 put in opera- 
tion, the grist mill which for over a score of 
years was an important industry of the town. 
On May q, 1893, this mill burned to the 
ground, and the plant has never been re- 


Evergreen Lodge, A. F. & A. M., number- 
ing 86, was organized about the close of 1870, 
with II charter members. A. W. Swift was 
the first W. M. After an existence of several 
years the lodge surrendered its charter. 


In 1868 the town commenced a rapid 
growth, which was continued during the next 
two years, and at one time it contained 13 gen- 
eral stores, three hotels, three saloons, two 
livery stables, two wagon shops, besides a 
great number of other shops and stores of 



various kinds, and a population of not less 
than 500 people. Failing to get the M. K. 
& T. Ry., which was built in 1870, and also 
other projected lines which were intended to 
pass through her boundaries failing to be built, 
it was evident that for a time at least she had 
reached the height of her prosperity; and when 
the town of Labette sprang up on the line of 
the railroad but a few miles from her, many 
of her firms removed their business there, and 
some of them took with them their business 
houses. Of the business houses remaining in 
the town, the larger part were swept awayl by 
a fire which occurred on February 28, 1895. 


When the Mineral branch of the M. K. & 
T. Ry. was built in 1895, it was located between 
two and three miles south of the town, so that 
it really furnishes no accommodations. 


In 1873 the Legislature passed an act auth- 
orizing the town to incorporate as a city of 
the third class, and in pursuance of its pro- 
vision an order was' made by the district judge, 
on July 3, 1877, for the incorporation of the 
city of Montana, and an election ordered for 
July 14th. At the first election Col. J. J. 
Woods was elected mayor, E. D. Keirsey 00- 
lice judge, and the following persons mem- 
bers of the council: A. B. Chaplain, G. T. 
Peak, J. P. Bradfield, Samuel Ballentine, and 
J. M. Mahr. A pretense of a city government 
was maintained until 1884. In April, 1883, 
Martin Wilcox was elected mayor, and was 
the last person on whom that honor was con- 
ferred. It became generally understood that 
the act authorizing the incorporation was un- 

constitutional, and the form of going through 
an election of officers who had no legal author- 
ity to act was abandoned. 


The plat of the town of Bartlett, located- 
on the southwest quarter of section 27, town- 
ship 34, range 20, acknowledged by Robert A. 
Bartlett, was filed in the office of the register 
of deeds, June 5, 1886. The first lot was sold 
to Jerome Calahan, who erected thereon the 
first building which was put up on the town- 
site. It was a two-story frame, in the first 
story of which he put a general stock of mer- 
chandise, which was the first store in town; 
the upper story was a hall, in which were held 
religious and other meetings. B. F. Cox built- 
the first dwelling in the town, and started the 
first blacksmith shop; the second dwelling was 
erected by H. L. Whiting. In 1891 
William Jarrett put in a cider-mill, and in con- 
nection with buhrs for grinding meal and feed. 
The Methodist is the only church building now 
in town, the Presbyterian church building hav- 
ing been destroyed by fire. Bartlett has grown 
into a nice trading point and is likely to have- 
considerable more growth. 

There have been two or three fires that 
have been quite damaging. In August, 1893, 
Reece Bros.' store and postoffice; in June, 
1896, J. H. Reaver's store; in March, 1899, 
the Lonaker and Utley buildings, and in Au- 
gust, 1900, two elevators and the Presbyterian, 
church were burned. 


Was laid out by Jesse A. Edmundson, on the 
northwest quarter of section 27, township 34,. 



range 19, in Elm Grove townsliip. soon after 
the completion of the railroad through that 
section, th'e town plat being acknowledged July 
21, 1886. The first building on the town-site 
was erected by J. F. Shields and J. A. Ed- 
mundson, soon after the town was platted, 
and was occupied by Wilson & Vanbibber with 
a stock of general merchandise. Brown & 
Waugh and Smith & Edmundson soon fol- 
lowed with stocks of notions and groceries; 
Henry Robinett and N. L. Addis opened black- 
smith shops; D. Wilson sold furniture. In 
a892 the Christian church erected a neat frame 
building. Quite a large amount of grain has 
been shipped from this point, and a good busi- 
ness is done by dealers in most of the lines of 
merchandise. In 1900 the railroad discontin- 
ued its agency at this point. The people, who 
voted bonds to aid in building the road with 
the belief that they were to have a permanent 
station, feel indignant over the loss of the 


On June 20, 1876, Mr. Booth and Alex. 
Patterson opened a general store in a claim 
shanty 11 by 14 feet, belonging to Jeptha 
Lackey, on the northeast one-fourth of section 
30, in Elm Grove township. This was the first 
start of the town of Edna. That same fall 
this firm brought from the town of Chanute 
the material of a frame building which they 
had torn down, and with it they put up at 
Edna, on the same quarter, the first store build- 
ing in the place. This building still stands. 
They continued to conduct the business until 
a 879, when they sold to Frank Clark. Other 
stores were opened from time to time. In 1883 
Dunlap & Co. started a hardware store, but 
there were no very important enterprises start- 


ed or any large amount of liuilding done until 
the construction of the railrdad through there 
in 1886, with the exception of the flour-mill, 
which was erected in 1883 by H. S. Wimmer 
and William Gear. This mill was put in ope- 
ration in the spring of 1884. and has ever been 
one of the most substantial features of Edna's 
prosperity. The town was not regularly laid 
off until the location of the railroad, in the 
summer of 1886. A plat of the town embrac- 
ing a portion of sections 29 and 30, township 
34, range 19, was filed August 21, 1886. 

There have been two quite extensive fires 
in Edna: one on February 13, 1889, on the 
west side of Delaware street, burning out the 
business houses of G. W. Reasor. W. P. Dol- 
lar and Josiah Arnold ; the other in December,, 
1 89 1, on the east side of Delaware street, con- 
suming the business houses of Frank Martin, 
Frank Holton, L. Powell, Alexander Dunlap 
and C. M. Rinker. 


There are two stone buildings in Edna, the 
first being the two-story bank building erected 
by C. T. Ewing in 1887, and the second, a one- 
story structure adjoining it, erected by G. W. 
Reasor in 1891. There have also been erected 
three fine' brick store buildings, one in 1894, 
and two in 1899, two of them being two stories 
in height, and the other one-story. 


As previously stated, a flouring mill was 
located here about the time the town was start- 
ed. In 1899 a large elevator was erected. 




On the application of its citizens an order 
was made by the board of county commission- 
ers on July 3, 1892, incorporating the town as 
a city of the third class, and on July 20 its 
first election was held, at which the following 
officers were elected: Mayor, J. H. Hoole; po- 
lice judge, J. H. Reasor; councilmen G. W. 
Reasor,T. G. Harris, H. H. Clark, A. C. Veach 
and J. C. Arnold. The first meeting of the 
mayor and council was held July 25, 1892, at 
which J. E. Blunk was appointed and con- 
firmed as city clerk. 

On August 9 four ordinances were passed. 
The first levied an occupation tax on all the 
various kinds of business conducted there; the 
second provided for the maintenance of the 
peace; the third prohibited stock from running 
at large; and the fourth provided for licensing 

Since its organization Edna has had the fol- 
lowing mayors and city clerks : Mayors — 1892, 
J. H. Hoole; 1893,-96, F. E. Hamilton; 1897, 
J. E. Blunk; 1898-99, J. H. Hughes; 1900, 
Dr. J. H. Woodul. Clerks— 1892, J. E. Blunk; 
1893-94, A. C. Veach; 1895, W. E. Staige; 
1896, E. H. Hughes; 1897, H. H. Clark; 1898, 
E. C. Fair; 1899, H. H. Clark; 1900, W. E. 


On Janaury 25, 1887, C. T. Ewing, who 
was in the banking business at Thayer and 
Cherryvale, opened the International Bank at 
Edna, with J. M. Berry, cashier. C. H. Za- 
briski succeeded Mr. Berry as cashier on No- 
vember I, 1888, and continued in charge of the 
bank until it failed, in May 1892. A state 
bank under the management of J. H. Lount 
was opened in September, 1897; in the follow- 

ing June it went into voluntary liquidation. 
The State Bank of Edna was opened July 21, 
1899, with $5,000 capital stock, and is doing a 
prosperous business. 


The site for this town is on a part of sec- 
tion 33, township 34, range 18, and was owned 
by the Excelsior Town and Mining Compan}-. 
The plat was filed July 7, 1886. The first 
ibuilding in the town was put up by Stone & 
Willie, w'ho placed therein a stock of merchan- 
dise. About the same time C. M. Keeler erect- 
ed a store building and put in a stock of goods, 
and Dr. Kenworthy started the first drug store. 
During the fall of 1866 all of the town of 
Deerton was moved to the Valeda town-site. 


This town is located near the center of sec- 
tion 26, in Liberty township. It was started 
with the avowed purpose of making it the 
county seat, and leading citizens from the 
southern part of the county, as well as those 
m the near vicinity, took interest in the enter- 
prise. Among the charter members were 
Dempsey Elliott, J. S. Waters, James H. Cnch- 
ton, W. A. Hodges, John W. Horner, W. J. 
Conner, and many more of like character and 
responsibility. The town company was incor- 
porated May 3, 1870. The charter specified 
that the town was to be located near Neola. 
It was not until September that the town plat 
was acknowledged by W. J. Conner, president 
of the town company; however, the building 
of tlie town commenced immediately upon the 
organization of the town company. The first 
families to be located upon the town-site were 
Robert Cooper, Wilf. Cooper, Dr. W. J. Con- 



ner and Jacob Weider. Wilt. Cooper entered 
a part of the town-site, and had resided thereon 
since 1868. Probably the first business house 
upon the town-site was that of Jacob Weider, 
moved there from Montana the latter part of 
May, in which he at once opened a bakery and 
saloon. Another saloon was opened some time 
after this by a Mr. Woolsey ; neither had license 
to run, and yet both were conducted for months 
without being interfered with. Before the close 
of June, 1870, a meat market was conducted 
by Lewis & Smith ; a lumber yard by Mr. Wil- 
kins; a boarding-house by Mr. Brady; a shoe 
shop by Mr. Moon, and a grocery store by Bates 
& Co. At this time it was said that there were 
52 houses on the town-site. During the next 
few months the town built rapidly, and by the 
close of the year was represented by nearly 
every line of business. 

Failing to secure the county seat, the suc- 
cess of the town began to be questioned, and 
of those interested therein some commenced to 
take their departure. For a number of years 
past it has remained what it became after the 
boom had subsided — a village with a fair busi- 
ness for two or three stores, and a shipping 
point for the grain raised in the vicinity. About 
187s a mill was erected by Bowen & Williams, 
of Chetopa. Some two years thereafter A. 
W. Diggs bought it, but soon sold it to other 
parties. The machinery was then removed, 
and for many years the mill was in disuse. 
In the spring of 1899 it was again refitted 
and put into operation by George Leggate. 
On November 2, 1899, the mill was entirely de- 
stroyed by fire. 

The M. K. & T. Ry. Co. built a spur road 
branching off at Labette, and going to Min- 
eral, in Cherokee county; this was commenced 
in the fall of 1894 and completed in the spring 
of 1895. 

On February 15, 
quite a portion of the 
town. On June 7, i8c 
the Baptist church and 

Soon after the tow 
grounds were selected 
Sarah Cooper was the 
was interred therein. 

1897, a fire destroyed 
business houses in the 
)o, a tornado destroyed 
one or two other build- 

n was started cemetery 
north of town. Mrs. 
first person whose body 


I. N. Hamilton, Henry G. Hamman, J. J. 
Miles and others were members of the town 
company which was chartered February 4, 
1875, for the purpose of laying out a town on 
the south half of section 2 and the north 
half of section 11, township 33, range 
19. This company does not seem to have ac- 
complished its purpose, and on September 5, 
1879, a new charter was filed, by I. N. Ham- 
ilton, S. O. Noble and others, for the purpose 
of locating a town on the northeast quarter of 
section 11, township 33, range 19. This 
land the company purchased from William 
Miller. The town plat was acknowledged by 
J. B. Jones, president, and S. O. Noble, secre- 
tary, and was filed January 21, 1880. I. N. 
Hamilton was first president, but was soon 
succeeded by J. B. Jones as president and Scott 
O. Noble as secretary. The first house erected 
on the town-site was the residence of Scott O. 
Noble; this was built in October, 1879. In De- 
cember of the same year J. B. Jones put up the 
next building, in which, about the first of Jan- 
uary, 1880, James Hershberger opened the 
first store in town. 

In 1875. before there seemed any prospect 
of building a town near there, E. C. Gordon. 


and A. B. Hammer erected a frame building 
on the northwest quarter of section 2, belong- 
ing to I. N. Hamilton. The machinery for a 
grist-mill was put in the next season, and a 
custom flouring-mill was conducted quite suc- 
cessfully for several years. In 1878 J. W. 
Giles erected a small mill on the southwest quar- 
ter of section 2. This was not operated very 
long. Mr. Giles afterwards moved the building 
onto the town-site, and out of it constructed a 
hotel. A mill was built in 1881 by Martin A 
Renner and Daniel Reid. The town company 
donated the land, constructed the pond, and 
gave them $75 in money, in order to secure the 
mill. Some years ago, W. J. Lough bought 
this mill and greatly improved and enlarged 
its capacity, making it one of the popular mills 
of the county. On June 3, 1900, it was totally 
destroyed by fire. After its destruction, John 
Rust erected, and in the latter part of 1900 
completed, a large and well equipped elevator, 
in which he also grinds feed. 

The first hotel was built in the spring of 
1880 by Samuel Sharp. Afterward J. W. Giles 
moved his mill building on the town site, and 
out of it constructed quite a good hotel build- 
ing. A good frame building was subsequently 
ierected near the depot, and has materially 
added to their hotel accommodations. 


September 29, 1884, the town was incor- 
porated, and on October 14, 1884, the first elec- 
tion was held, which resulted in electing H. C. 
Blanchard, mayor; L. W. Grain, police judge; 
and the following councilmen : R. B. Gregg, 
W. M. McCoid, D. Reid, C. S. Newlon, A. J. 

Garst. W. F. Hamman was elected city clerk. 
Mr. Blanchard was elected mayor by *two ma- 
jority over J. B. Jones. Mayors: 1884, H. C. 
Blanchard; 1885, C. S. Newlon; 1886, W. P. 
Wilson; 1887, A. W. Mackie; 1888-89 J- B. 
Jones; 1890, R. B. Gay; 1891, A. W. Mackie; 
1892-93, C. S. Newlon; 1894-95, W. J. 
Lough; 1896, S. L. Martin; 1897, Harry Mills; 

1898, Thomas H. Lough; 1899, Charles E. 
Harrington; 1900, C. E. Hildreth. Clerks: 
1884. W. F. Hamman; 1885, A. A. Farmer; 
1886, B. F. Godfrey; 1887-88. C. M. Pool; 
1889, J. B. Libbey; 1890, W. S. Houghton; 
1891, Harry Mills; 1892, H. E. Hamman, 
Henry Tropp and W. F. Hamman; 1893, C. 
M. Doughman; 1894-96, W. W. Starnes; 
1897, L. P. Hamilton; 1898, A. R. Martin; 

1899, J. H. Taylor; 1900, J. E. Switzer. 


In 1886 p. Lane erected a substantial two- 
story brick business house. Prior to this all 
the buildings had been frame. In 1893 '^^^'^ 
or three one-story brick store buildings were 
put up. Besides these brick structures there 
are the brick school buildings. 


In 1893 the county high school was es- 
tablished in Altamont, and has been a help in 
giving the people a feeling of confidence and 
oride in their town. 

February i, 1886, J. H. Macon and S. A. 
Duval opened a bank, which was run some 
time, but finally the management was such that 
it was found to be unprofitable, and it was 




The Presbyterians put up a church build- 
ing in the spring of 1881; the Methodists in 
1882; the Baptists finished their house in 
June, 1884; and in 1892 the Christians pur- 
chased the old frame school-house and moved 
it onto their lots for a church. 


J. P. Allen, W. A. Lewis, Charles 
N. L. Hibbard, Chas. Lierly, C. H. Lewis 
and others became incorporated July 13, 1868, 
with the authority to locate a town on section 
2, township 33. range 18. The first building 
on the town-site was put up in the summer 
of i86g, by the town company in connection 
with Alexander Honrath and Henry Rohr, the 
upper story of which was to be used as the 
town company's office and the public hall, and 
the lower story by Honrath & Rohr for a gen- 
eral store. Among those who followed 
Messrs. Honrath & Rohr were L. F. Nicholas, 
who put in a stock of drugs; J. B. Kremer, 
who had a grocery and hardware store; and 
E. H. Stevens, the postoffice. 

No title to the land on which the town was 
located was obtained from the Government 
-until the passage of the act of 1876. In 
February, 1877, the occupants petitioned the 
probate judge to enter the town-site as he was 
authorized to do under the law. This he did, 
and in July, 1878, a certificate of entry was is- 
sued to 'him for the benefit of the occupants of 
the said town-site. 


Several parties who had been or claimed to 
be lawyers have had their ofiice in this town. 

W. M. Rogers was the first of this class to lo- 
cate here. Without attempting to mention 
a number of those who subsequently attempted 
to practice in justice court, some of whom were 
and some of whom were not admitted to the 
bar, I may mention W. F. Schoch, who for 
several years was located at this point, and did 
a good business. A little later, Alvah Shick, 
who had been raised in the town, was admitted 
to the bar, and did collecting and a local law 
business until his death. The first doctor to 
locate in this vicinity was Charles H. Lewis, 
who settled here in 1869. He had a claim on 
which he lived; he had quite a good practice. 
E. Tanner came in February, 1870, and N. M. 
Miller later in that year. Doctors Pattie, 
Woods, Towel, Wenner, Tustison, Stansbury, 
McEwen, Sanders, Allen, Lemon, Lake, 
Strother and Morgan have offered their serv- 
ices to the public, and several of them have 
done a good business and made a good reputa- 

On October 7, 1883, C. M. Condon and W. 
H. Gandy opened a bank, which they continued 
to run until September, 1889, when they dis- 
solved, since which time the bank has been con- 
ducted by Mr. Condon. 

In 1883 an eft'ort was made to sink an arte- 
sian well for the purpose of supplying the town 
with water, and with the hope of finding coal. 
After drilling to a depth of over 750 feet, the 
parties became doubtful of obtaining the object 
sought; it was, however, discovered that the 
well contained a large amount of gas, and in 
1884 tubing was put in with the view of util- 
izing the gas. For practical purposes, this 



never amounted to anythino-. But, later, other 
efforts have been made to prospect further and, 
if possible, to find gas in paying quantities. In 
1900, work in this direction was commenced, 
and at this writing it is believed by many that 
a sufficient flow has been obtained to justify 
piping the town, preparatory to its use. 


The gas well above referred to was found 
to afford water highly impregnated with min- 
erals which it was believed would be good for 
medicinal purposes. Authority was obtained 
from the Legislature to use the proceeds of the 
sale of the township railroad stock in the erec- 
tion of a large house, which was done, and it 
has become quite a resort for invalids. It is 
lighted and heated by natural gas from the 
well already spoken of. 


In 1881 W. C. O'Brien and W. W. Harper 
erected a mill on the bank of the Labette, which 
proved to be a very good institution for the 
place, but not always a profitable investment 
to the owners. The mill was entirely con- 
sumed by fire on November 23, 1892. Since 
then a new mill has been built on the site of 
the old one. 


There is one stone and one brick building 
in town. The first was built by Joseph Riff, 
in 1883; the latter, a very fine structure, was 
built by F. P. Dicus & Co., in 1890. 


The first fire in town was on October 6, 
1872, when the town company building with 
the stock of Honrath & Rohr was entirely con- 
sumed. This was probably as heavy a loss 

to the town as the great fire which occurred in 
1889. when a whole block of buildings was con- 
sumed with the greater part of the stocks in 
it. The grist-mill was burned on November 
23, 1892. 


On August 2, 1 87 1, on petition of Alexan- 
der Honrath and others, an order of the pro- 
bate court was made for the incorporation of 
the town, and the following persons were ap- 
pointed trustees : Alexander Honrath. Wm. M. 
Rogers, John B. Campbell, E. Tanner, and 
Alexander McBride. 

On January 9, 1884, an order of the judge 
of the district court was made incorporating 
the town as a city of the third class. The 
first election was held January 24th. Mayors: 

E. Tanner, W. W. Harper, E. Tanner, Will- 
iam Clark, Josephus Moore, W. W. McEwen, 

F. E. West, F. P. Dicus (2 years), F. M. 
Gandy, E. Tanner (2 years), Alvah Shick, 
and George Lutz (2 years). Clerks: W. N. 
McCoid, J. M. Smith, N. M. Miller, S. D. 
Richardson, Isaac Hill, Rufus Thrall, W. N. 
McCoid, T. J. Cozad, F. M. Gandy, E. A. 
Steele, A. L. Bushnell, Dott Norfleet (2 years). 
Ivy Norfleet, and W. H. Humphrey. 


Of the early settlement of this part of the 
county I have spoken in other parts of this 
work. The first white settler within the pres- 
ent corporate limits of Chetopa of whom I 
have any account was John McMurtry, who 
lived at a point on the Neosho River at or near 
where the west end of the Neosho bridge is 
now located. When the settlement was de- 
stroyed in 1863, his house was torn down. 
I have not been able to learn at what date he 



settled liere, but Dr. Lisle found him there 
when he came, and he continued to reside there 
up to the breaking up of the settlement in 1863. 
Dr. Lisle made his settlement upon a piece of 
ground, ever since claimed by him as his home, 
on April 18, 1857. That summer he erected 
his house and shops on what is now a part of 
block 24. In August he went back to Ohio 
and brought his family with him, arriving in 
Chetopa in November. From that time to 
the present his absence from Chetopa has been 
but temporary. 

Willoughby Doudna came to sse Dr. Lisle 
in the fall of 1857 and stayed with him some 
time. The next year he went back to Ohio and 
married. In the fall he and his wife came to 
Chetopa, but in the spring of 1859 they located 
near Baxter Springs, and did not come back to 
Chetopa until after the war. 

The early settlement at and around Che- 
topa was broken up November 19, 1863, by a 
force of United States troops numbering prob- 
ably some two or three hundred, under the 
command of Captain Willits, Adjutant Able 
and Lieutenant Josylen. All of the bu'ldings 
in the vicinity were burned or otherwise de- 
stroyed and all the settlers were driven away. 
This was done, as the officers claimed, by com- 
mand of their superior officers to prevent the 
property falling into the hands of the rebels. 
Dr. Lisle and family went to Ciiuncil Grove. 
They remained until September, 1865, when he 
came down and looked over the ground, and 
in November of that year brought his family 
back to Chetopa. 


The permanent settlement of Chetopa really 
commences with the year 1866. In the spring 
of that year Ephraim Doudna and Dr. George 

Lisle built the first house upon the town-site. 
It was a "shake" house, and stood on the west 
side of what is now Third street, and north of 
Maple street, near the alley. In this home 
Ephraim Doudna opened tlie first store in 
town. He had a small stock of goods consisting 
of dry goods, groceries and provisions. Soon 
after this a man by the name of Hoffman built 
a cabin and blacksmith shop south of where 
Maple street now is, and between Second and 
Third streets. These were the only buildings 
in town at the close of 1866 of wh'ch I have 
been able to learn, although it is probable there 
were two or three more log houses built that 
year. Perry Barnes moved into town on elec- 
tion day, in November of that year, and was al- 
lowed to vote; it was considered that every- 
body who was here with the intention of set- 
tling had a right to express his preference at the 
first election. D. U. Watson and Wm. Shay 
were two of the judges of this election, and S. 
R. Southwick was one of the clerks. 

In February of 1867 Willoughby Doudna, 
who had a sawmill on the east side of the Neo- 
sho River, just above the mouth of Canville 
Creek, in Neosho county, moved it to Chetopa 
and located it on the west side of the Neosho 
near the foot of Maple street as afterwards lo- 
cated. He began sawing on February 20th, 
and had a buhr for grinding corn in operation 
the fore part of May. The only other mills at 
this time in the county were in Neosho and 
Montana townships. W. H. Reed operated 
this mill, sawed the first tree made into boards 
in Chetopa, and during the spring built the first 
frame house that was erected in town. It stood 
at the northwest corner of block 60. From this 
time on frame houses made of native lumber 
began to be built where before either the log or 
"shake" shanties had been made to answer. In 
the early summer of this year a rough survey 



for the town-site was made by S. R. Southwick, 
and Maple and Third streets were located. In 
June, Perry Barnes built a house on the south- 
east corner of Third and Maple streets, de- 
signed for a hotel and store. In this, about 
the first of July, he opened a stock of groceries 
and a hotel ; this was the first hotel in town, 
and the second store. About the same time a 
small cabin was erected on the southwest corner 
of First and Maple streets and called "Bache- 
lors' Hall," or the "Cabinet Shop." That sum- 
mer Z. A. Woodard bought out Mr. Doudna, 
and in the building occupied by him put in a 
general stock of goods. In this store, from the 
first, was kept the postoffice. Thus the first 
building erected upon the town-site contained 
not only the first store, but also the first post- 
office. William Craft and family came in Oc- 
tober of that year, and at once commenced the 
erection of a hotel on the northwest corner of 
Third and Maple streets. It was a frame 
building, 24 by 26 feet, two stories high. It 
was completed and opened for guests that fall, 
under the name of the Chetopa House, and 
was the first building erected exclusively for a 
hotel. In the 'Bachelors' Hall" or "Cabinet 
Shop" above referred to, in September 
this year, was opened the first Sunday sdhool 
in town, with G. H. Hard as superintendent. 
Occasionally preaching services were also 
had. On October 23, this year, Emma Reed 
was born to Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Reed. This 
was the first birth in town. 

The important events of 1868 were the se- 
curing of a title to the town-site, the organiza- 
tion of the town company, and the definite 
survey and laying out of the town. As several 
of the then residents of Chetopa had settled 
there before the war, they were able to enter 
their lands under the 4th article of the treaty 

with the Osages of September 29, 1865. On 
January 21, 1868, Dr. George Lisle entered the 
southeast quarter of section 34, \\^illoughby 
Doudna and George Hanson part of section 35. 
The lands thus entered embraced the site of 
Chetopa, and so much as was within the limits 
of what was intended for the town was deeded 
to the town company. Thus, while her neigh- 
bors had to make their improvements on Gov^ 
ernment land, Chetopa could offer homes to 
which a perfect title could be secured. This 
was an important item in her favor. 


In the spring of this year the California 
House was erected, on the northeast corner of 
Maple and Third streets. In the latter part 
of the summer Spaulding's Hall, on the corner 
of Fourth and Maple streets, was erected; it 
was a good-sized two-story building, and fur- 
nished the first place in town suitable for hold- 
ing religious and public meetings. Another 
enterprise started this year, and one destined 
to add as much to the development of the town 
as almost any that was started in an early day, 
was the planing mill, sash and furniture fac- 
tory of Taft, Brown & Co. This was built in 
the fall, and ready for operation the first of 
December. They sent out a large amount of 
house-furnishing material and furniture to ad- 
jacent counties and neighboring towns. Dur- 
ing the fall of this year Oliver Marsh cpened 
a large dry-goods store, and Dr. M. H. Dur- 
sham started a drug store, which he conducted 
in connection with his professional practice. 
On April 4th James H. Crichton walked into 
town as the vanguard of a long line of attor- 
neys who were to grace the bar at that place, 
and during the early summer he put up a two- 
story frame building on the north side of Maple 



street, and had it plastered; this was the first 
plastered house in town. At the close of 1868 
there was quite a large settlement of industri- 
ous and enterprising people who were success- 
fully conducting various lines of business, and 
the town presented the appearance of a thriv- 
ing and progressive village. 


Dr. Lisle had from the first intended the 
location of a town upon the land on which he 
settled, and early in 1868 he arranged with in- 
fluential men for the organization of a town 
company. It was not, however, until March 
30 of this year that the town company was 
incorporated. The charter members consisted 
of George Lisle, George Hanson, Willoughby 
Doudna, N. S. Goss, John Secrest, J. D. Tor- 
bert, and Watson Stewart. The company or- 
ganized by the election of George Lisle presi- 
dent and Willoughby Doudna secretary. The 
town was' located and laid off upon sections 
34 and 35. Liberal donations were made to 
the various church organizations, and to such 
enterprises as it was thought would tend to up- 
build the town. 


I shall not attempt to describe the contin- 
ued multiplication of new buildings, both busi- 
ness houses and private residences, as they ap- 
pear during this and succeeding years. The 
two important features of the town's history in 
1869 were the establishment of the Advance 
and the incorporation of the town. By dona- 
tion of lots made by the town company and the 
securing of a fair limit of paid subscribers, 
John W. Horner and A. S. Cory had been in- 
duced in the latter part of 1868 to bring a 

printing press from Baldwin City, Douglas 
county, to Chetopa, and in the first week of 
1869 they gave to the public the first issue of 
the Advance. It is not likely that any dona- 
tion ever made by its citizens did more for the 
upbuilding of Chetopa than that which se- 
cured them this paper. Its publishers displayed 
a wonderful amount of enterprise in the gath- 
ering of news and extending the circulation 
of their paper. The' advantages which the 
town offered were thus made known to all who 
had any disposition to learn. 

In March W. A. Hodges brought quite a 
large nursery stock, which was the first to be 
brought to this part of the county. The first 
flouring-mill in town was erected in the fall of 
this year, and in October commenced its opera- 
tion. Gilbert Martin was the proprietor. 


The year 1870 was an important one in 
the history of Chetopa. The fact that every 
one confidently anticipated the completion of 
the railroad some time during the early part 
of the year, gave a great impetus to business, 
and speculations ran high. A large number 
of new buildings were erected, and large num- 
bers of new firms' opened up in business. 

Brick Buildings. — Up to 1870 there had 
been nothing but wooden structures in town, 
but early this' summer several brick business 
houses were erected. Among the bricks erect- 
ed were one by F. A. Drake, one by Dr. Hal- 
derman, and one by Hornby & Lewis; others 
were also arranged for and built the following 
year. In June of this year the cars were run- 
ning into Chetopa, and the fact that it was the 
end of the line brought there a large number 
of emigrants — not only those who were intend- 
ing to stop here, but also those who were antici- 



pating going farther south and ' southwest. 
From this point travelers laid in their supplies, 
and the merchants of Chetopa conducted al- 
most a wholesale business. 

Foundry. — In the latter part of 1870, John 
Torrance located his foundry at this point. 
This was a valuable addition to the business 
of the town, bringing to it an element of trade 
which before that had been compelled to go to 
Fort Scott and other points north. 


In January, 1880, a branch of the State 
Freedman's Aid Society was organized for the 
purpose of furnishing aid to the destitute 
refugees who had settled here. C. H. Mc- 
Creery was president and J. D. Graham sec- 

Orphans' Home Society. — A Number of 
years ago this society was formed in aid to 
the State Home for Orphans. The ladies met 
regularly, and worked on articles either to be 
used in the 'Home itself, or to be sold and the 
proceeds applied to the aid of the Home. 
Through their exertions a number of orphans 
were provided with homes. 

A. F. & A. M.— On November 5, 1868, a 
Masonic lodge was organized, with J. H. Crich- 
ton, W. M. 

I. O. O. F. — August 10, 1869, a lodge of 
the Odd Fellows was organized. 

A. O. U. W.— A lodge of the United Work- 
men was organized December 17, 1879, with 
J. B. Cook, M. W. 

K. of P. — A lodge of this order was or- 
ganized May 9, 1883. 


On September 13, 1869, a meeting was held 
in Spaulding's Hall to consider the matter of 

a cemetery. Jonas Clark, W. B. Gregory and 
T. B. Lake were appointed a committee to select 
a site. In October the committee selected 20 
acres on the east side of Mr. Hard's farm, 
southeast of town. No title could be procured 
to this ground for some years; nevertheless, 
the burying proceeded. The Legislature auth- 
orized the trustee of Richland township to ap- 
propriate money to help pay for this cemetery 
ground; the township and city thereupon ap- 
propriating enough money to purchase and pro- 
cure title to the land. The cemetery associa- 
tion was incorporated in June, 1883, with L. 
M. Bedell president, and George Eddington 
secretary and superintendent. 


On April 12, 1869, on petition of her citi- 
zens, the probate judge made an order incor- 
porating the town of Chetopa, and appointed 
William Gage, Leander Brown, M. G. Pratt. 
A. S. Cory and Henry Lisle as its board of 
trustees. On April 14, 1869, these trustees 
met, and organized by electing William Gage 
chairman, and appointing W. H. Fisher clerk. 
On June 28th Mr. Fisher resigned as clerk, 
and C. F. Webster was appointed to fill the 
vacancy. Some time between August i6th and 
December 8th, 1869, H. R. Dobyns was ap- 
pointed clerk. 

On March 9, 1870, an ordinance which 
had just been passed was published, declaring 
Chetopa a city of the third class, and on April 
4th the first city election was held. A Republi- 
can caucus had previously been held, and nom- 
inated S. A. Marsh for mayor, W. B. Gregory, 
C. H. Dudlow, Wm. Nix, C. A. Degraff, and 
Dr. L. P. Patty for councilmen. The opposition 
concentrated their strength upon the office of 
mayor, and, many Republicans joining, 



brought out F. M. Graham for that office, who, 
after a spirited contest, was elected, with all 
the above-named candidates for council. Upon 
organizing, the new government continued Mr. 
Dobyns as city clerk till May, 1870, when he 
\vas succeeded by N. S. Storrs. 

In March, 1871, the city was by ordinance 
declared a city of the second class under the 
special act of the Legislature providing for its 
organization as such, along with Oswego. 
There was a lively contest for the city officers 
at the April election that year. George W. 
Fox was supported bv those generally desig- 
nated as the "bummer element." by the Ad- 
z'ancc, and of course by many good citizens. 
C. F. Smith was supported by the Mechanics' 
Association, which had recently been organ- 
ized, and by the more conservative class of 
citizens. Mr. Fox was elected. On April 12. 
1871, the new city council organized, and the 
following officers were appointed : Clerk, J. 
M. Cavaness; treasurer, Hiram Butterworth; 
assessor, C. P. Spaulding; street commissioner, 
R. G. Tileston ; attorney, J. J. Long. On Sep- 
tember 1st Mr. Cavaness resigned as city clerk, 
G. W. Houston filling the place temporarily 
till October, when I. R. Minor was appointed, 
and was succeeded by Leroy Neale in No- 

The city government was characterized by 
a spirit of profligacy in the expenditure of 
money and the incurring of debt which soon 
brought it into disrepute with nearly all of the 
business part of the place. The mayor claimed 
high prerogatives unknown to the law. The 
saloons were the most powerful features in the 
local administration. During the fall and win- 
ter the Adi'ance, which had favored their 
election, opened a war on the city adminis- 
tration. It said, "The rogues are having their 
own way to their hearts' content." For weeks 

before the next election both sides — the ad- 
ministration and the reformers — conducted an 
active canvass. But when the election came 
oflf, in April, 1872, those in favor of changing 
the administration made a clean sweep and 
elected their full ticket. 

For a second time F. M. Graham became 
mayor. C. F. Smith was soon appointed clerk, 
and in June was succeeded by M. S. Parker. 
The old debt was bonded, the expensive con- 
tracts for street improvements were modified 
as far as possible in the interest of economy, 
and a feeling of financial security began again 
to inspire the people. It was evident that a 
new order of things had been inaugurated. 
Mayors: 1870, F. M. Graham; 1871, G. W. 
Fox; 1872, F. M. Graham; 1873, George Lisle; 
1874, N. Elliott; 187^, Alfred Large; 1876, 
S. B. Fisher: 1877. L. M. Bedell: 1878. S. 
B. Fisher: 1879, J. H. Chrichton : 1881-87, 
J. B. Cook; 1888, James Brown; 1889, George 
Eddington; 1891-92, C. Cranwell : 1893-94. A. 
B. Temple: 1895-96. J. W. Columbia; 1897- 
98, E. W. Bedell: in April, 1899, C. Cranwell 
was again elected, but died a year thereafter, 
and S. T. Herman was then elected to fill out 
his term. Clerks: 1869, W. F. Fisher. C. 
F. W'ebster. H. R. Dobyns: 1870. X. S. 
Storrs; 1871, J. M. Cavaness, G. W. Houston, 
I. R. Minor, Leroy Neale; 1872. C. F. Smith, 
M. S. Parker; 1873, G. M. Caldwell; 1874-7, 
Henry Frye; 1878-87. John \Y. Breidenthal; 
1887. A. F. Sloane, J. B. Sneely; 1888-9. I- 
H. Frye; 1890, A. R. Bell; 1S91, J. M. Cav- 
aness; 1892-96, E. \y. Minturn: 1897-1899. 
Car] J. Simons: 1900. A. R. Bell. 

Near the close of 1868 C. P. Spauld'ng- 
started the first bank in the tnwn. He had 


very little capital, and attempted a much larger 
Tjtisiness than he was able to conduct. He con- 
tinued to operate this bank until the spring of 
1870, when, unable to meet his obligations, a 
number of su'.ts were commenced against him 
and he was forced to quit business. 

W. B. Ketcham and F. H. Ketcham opened 
a bank about July i, 1870, which they con- 
ducted until the fall of the following year. 

National Bank. — The First National 
Bank was the successor of Ketcham Brothers. 
It was opened for business December 4, 1871, 
with James E. Marsh, of Kansas City, presi- 
dent: E. J. Stewart (then postmaster), vice- 
president; F. H. Ketcham, cashier; Lee Clark, 
assistant cashier. Some time thereafter R. W. 
Officer succeeded Mr. Marsh as president. The 
bank had an authorized capital of $50,000, and 
a paid-up capital of $25,000. In March, 1873, 
the bank moved into its fine brick building, 
which it had just completed on the northwest 
corner of Third and Maple streets. In Sep- 
tember, 1873, the stringency of the money 
market caused this bank to temporarily sus- 
pend payment. On July, 19, 1875, the bank 
decided to go into liquidation, and Lee Clark 
was put in charge and settled up its afifairs. 

Savings Bank. — The Chetopa Savings 
Bank was organized July i, 1871, with a paid 
up capital of $30,000. Charles H. Safford was 
president, L. F. Fisher, secretary, and George 
S. Newman, cashier. 

Private Banks. — ^January i, 1876, F. H. 
Ketcham, R. W. Officer and Lee Clark com- 
menced business as Ketcham & Co., and suc- 
ceeded to the business of the First National 
Bank. Lee Clark bought out the interest of 
his partners in June, 1876, and in August fol- 
lowing associated with him Arthur D. Sturgis 
under the firm name of Clark & Sturgis. Jan- 
nary I, 1879, Lee Clark went to Parsons to 

become cashier of the First National Bank of 
that place, and later in the _vear xVIr. Sturgis 
removed to Mansfield, Ohio, leaving Edgar 
W. Clark in charge of the bank. August i, 
1879, Lee Clark purchased Mr. Sturgis' in- 
terest and soon thereafter sold a haJf interest 
to George H. Bates. Clark & Bates as thus 
constituted continued in business till the death 
of Mr. Bates, in February, 1883, when Flor- 
ence E. Bates succeeded to the interest of her 
husband. Afterward Lee Clark sold his in- 
terest in the bank to Edgar ^^'. Clark, who, 
with Mrs. Bates, continued to conduct it for 
some time. 

State Banks.— The Citizens State Bank, 
of which J. P. McEwen is president and J. F. 
McEwen is cashier, succeeded to the business 
of Clark & Bates. The Neosho Valley Bank 
was an adjunct of the Neosho Valley Invest- 
ment Company, and when the latter failed, the 
bank changed management and became th.e 
Farmers and Merchants State Bank, of which 
W. G. Hoover is president and H. W. Bedell, 


Col. J. B. Cook in 1875 opened ai real estate 
and loan business, and during the next few 
years did an extensive business, both in the 
way of selling real estate and making real estate 
loans. January i, 1884, L. M. Bedell and J. 
W. Breidenthal became associated with him in 
the loan business the firm being known as J. 
B. Cook & Co. 

By March i, 1885, the Neosho Valley In- 
vestment Company was formed as the suc- 
cessor to the business of J. B. Cook & Co. J. 
B. Cook was president; J. \V. Breidenthal, 
secretary; L. M. Bedell, treasurer. Subse- 
quently R. Haines Passmore succeeded Mr. 



Cook as president, and subsequently still other 
changes were made in its officers. In Septem- 
ber, 1898, this company went into the hands of 
a receiver, and its business is now in process. of 
settlement through the courts. 

October, 1869, Gilbert Martin commenced 
operating a flouring-mill, which he had just 
finished on the Neosho. 

July I, 1 87 1, Hunter & Williams' flour- 
mill, which had been erected during the early 
part of the year, was finished and opened for 
business. Since then other mills have been es- 

mechanics' association. 

On March 3, 1871, the mechanics of the 
town organized an association for mutual help 
and protection, of which J. M. Bannan was 
secretary and the controlling spirit. This or- 
ganization sought to unite the mechanics' in- 
terest in the town by an effort to control the 
work of that locality to those residing therein 
rather than allowing it to be done by persons 
brought there from abroad, and also to secure 
a fair remuneration to all who were engaged in 
mechanical pursuits. 


In December, 1882, the opera house com- 
pany was organized, with G. H. Bates, presi- 
dent; B. S. Edwards, vice-president; WilHam 
Lehman, secretary, and E. W. Clark, treasurer, 
and the following year the opera house was 
constructed and opened. 

On September 17, 1871, a big tire broke 
out, and nearly one block, known as the Sturgis 

block, was burned. August 14, 1882, a great 
fire took place, starting in G. A. Luman's hard- 
ware store on the south side of i\laple street, 
and consuming 19 buildings before its force 
could be arrested. On May 3, 1884, Marsh's 
block was burned. Several other fires of more 
or less note have occurred; one of these was 
on February 12, 1S99, when the Presbyterian 
church was burned. 


During the past few years a very great 
improvement has been made in the walks of 
the city. Wide brick sidewalks have been laid, 
on both sides of the street, the whole length 
of Maple street, from the business portion to 
the M. K. & T. Ry. depot. In other parts of 
the town the walks have also been improved. 


Not a large amount of this article has yet 
been found, but sufficient to be utilized to a cer- 
tain extent in heating and lighting the business 
houses. Farther developments are hoped for. 


On February 18, 1875, the Ladies" Library 
Association of Chetopa was organized, with a 
membership of 81. Mrs. M. A. Shilds, Mrs. 
J. F. Hunter, and Mrs. H. Butterworth, by 
the payment of $10 each, were made life mem- 
bers of the association. The following officers 
were elected: President, Mrs. M. A. Aldrich; 
secretary, Mrs. B. S. Edwards ; treasurer, Mrs. 
M. A. Shilds; librarian, Miss Fannie Shilds. 
On ]\Iay 14, 1875, the library was formally 
opened, with 116 volumes on the shelves. In 
Februarv, 1882. the association disbanded, and 



did nothing for three years. On March 7, 
1885, it was reorganized as the City Library 
Association, with a membership of 90. The 
payment of $1 a year entitled one to the use of 
a book each week. The association now has 
582 books in the library. 

A number of winters, more especially in 
her early history, Chetopa has maintained a 
good literary society; frequently the business 
men have been among the leading spirits in it. 
In 1870 C. H. Ludlow was president, and that 
year, as well as in 1872-73, most of the lead- 
ing men took part in the debates. In 1873 a 
temperance literary society was organized, of 
which Dr. C. Humble was president. 

An organization of the Chautauqua Liter- 
ary and Scientific Circle was effected here in 


In 1884 a couple of Chinamen came to town 
and opened up a laundry. Some of the citi- 
zens conceived a great antipathy to these work- 
men, and concluded that the proper thing to 
do was to dispense with their presence. The 
Chinamen were informed that they would do 
well to take their departure from town, but not 
heeding the request, other measures were taken 
to induce them to find a more congenial home. 
The authorities, ascertaining what was going 
on, took steps to interfere; the result was the, 
arrest of some two dozen men engaged in the 
attempt to depopulate, and after a protracted 
and hotly-contested suit four of the parties 
were convicted and fined $25 each. 


Chetopa has ever taken a pride in getting 
up fine celebrations. The first one was held 

on July 4, 1867, in an arbor provided for the 
occasion north of Maple and east of Third 
streets, at which the Declaration of Inde- 
pendence was read by Harry Shannon, of La 
Porte, Indiana. Speeches were made by Cap- 
tain Secrest and others, and in this arbor -in 
the afternoon of that day Rev. Mr. Cox, from 
Indiana, preached the first sermon of which we 
have any account since the breaking up of the 
settlement in 1863. At the same place in the 
evening a dance was held, and those participat- 
ing therein took their refreshments at Barnes' 
Hotel, which had just been opened across the 
street to the south. The next celebration of 
note was on July 4, 1869 at which Congress- 
man Sidney Clarke and Colonel Hoyt made 
speeches to a large crowd of people. Another 
important celebration was held July 4, 1875, 
when George T. Anthony spoke to a large 
crowd of people. 

Not every year, but frequently, since then, 
the city has observed the day of national in- 
dependence in a similar way. In recent years 
there have been held annually reunions of the 
old soldiers, which have brought large num- 
bers of people to the city. 


Of the settlement of Mathews upon the 
present site of the city of Oswego, I have 
spoken in another part of this work. The first 
settlement of the town aside from the Mathews 
settlement dates from the fall of 1865. In the 
latter part of October of that year Clinton Rex- 
ford and N. P. Elsbree located, the former 
on the southeast quarter of section 16, and the 
latter upon the southwest quarter of section 15, 
township 33, range 21, and were the first white 
men to make their homes upon the present site 


of Oswego after the death of Mathews. 
Messrs. Rexford and Elsbree were directed to 
this site by A. T. Dickerman and Jabez Zink, 
who had a short time before that located upon 
the Labette, and who found them encamped 
near the mouth of that stream in search for a 
location and contesting with the Bakers for 
claims taken by them. They had not much 
more than gotten fairly located upon their 
claim until other parties came into the neigh- 
borhood. But as the location of these new set- 
tlements were outside of the limits of what be- 
came the town, and have been spoken of in 
treating of the settlement of the township, I 
will not repeat it here. Late in 1865, Rex- 
ford and Elsbree brought on a small stock of 
provisions and opened up the first store or 
trading-post in the town, and in fact the first 
in this part of the county. Their store build- 
ing was a rough log shanty, and stood near 
the center of what is now block 66. In the 
street near the northwest corner of this block 
is a spring from which all the early settlers 
were supplied with water. The old Govern- 
ment road, coming from a northwesterly di- 
rection, passed between what is now blocks 61 
and 66. 


The first hotel in the place was started in 
the spring of this year by Wm. A. Hogaboom. 
It was a log cabin, and stood on what is now 
the east part of block 6r. While it was not a 
very commodious afifair, it served the purpose 
of furnishing entertainment to the few new 
settlers who commenced coming early that sea- 
son. Among those who came this year were 
the following: Dr. John F. Newlon, C. H. 
Talbott, Andy Kaho, the Sloane family, Thos. 
J. Buntain, Hiram Hollingsworth.i Thos. J. 
Flouronoy, J. O. Cowell, H. C. Bridgman, Jas. 

Jones, H. W. Thompson, Nelson F. Carr, and 
C. H. Bent. Carr and Bridgman bought from 
Rexford and Elsbree the small stock of gro- 
ceries which they had put in the fall previous, 
and added somewhat thereto; and during that 
year J. Q. Cowell put up a small addition to 
the Carr and Bridgman store, in which he 
opened up a small stock of groceries and drugs. 
This was the first drug store in the county. 


The treaty with the Osages having been 
ratified and proclaimed by the President, set- 
tlers came in this year in greater numbers, and 
with more assurance of finding here a home 
than had those who had previously come. D. W. 
Clover had come into the vicinity the July 
previous, and had stopped with his sons down 
on the bank of the river. Directly after corn- 
ing he had gone into the organization of the 
town company, making preparations for help- 
ing build up the town. During the winter he 
had gotten out logs, and in the spring of this 
year erected on the southeast corner of block 
25 a hewed-log house in which he at once 
opened a hotel, naming it the Oswego House; 
ever since which time the principal hotel in the 
place has been maintained on that corner under 
the same name as first started. 

The principal new business firms that were 
started this year were A. Waskey & Sons, Dr. 
R. W. Wright, and H. L. Woodford. All 
of these came here during the summer and got 
their business houses open in the fall. J. F. 
and T. P. Waskey conducted the business for 
their house, opening first in the Buntain build- 
ing and the next season erecting their own 
building, in block ^^, into which they moved. 

Prior to this year there had been no saw- 
mills in the county, and all of the buildings had 
been built of logs — some of them rough log 



houses, and some liewed. Those -who built 
this year were able to get boards, and several 
frame houses were erected. Thomas J. Buntain 
put up a two-story frame about 20 by 40 feet, 
on the southwest corner of block 25 ; Dr. R. 
W. Wright put up a one-story frame on the 
northwest corner of block 31, in which he there- 
after put his drug store; Dr. W. S. Newlon 
built a frame residence on the lots ever since 
occupied by him. Several other smaller frame 
houses, either for business or residence, were 
also built. In addition to Dr. Wright, Dr. 
Newlon, and the Waske> brothers, whom 1 
have mentioned as having come this year, I may 
name A. L. Austin, Rev. Thomas H. Canfield, 
Jerry D. McCue, and Walter P. Bishop. At 
the close of 1867 there were in Oswego 10 
frame buildings and 11 log bouses, with a 
population of 16 families, numbering about loc 
individuals. There were in all five stores, two 
of which were kept on the site first occupied, 
on the edge of the bluff, one by Carr & Bridg- 
man and one by J. Q. Cowell. H. L. Wood- 
ford had a small feed store in the same vicinity. 
The other two stores were within the presen: 
business site — one by the Waskeys in the Bun- 
tain building, and the other by Dr. Wright in 
his own building, as above described. In ad- 
dition to these there was one blacksmith shoj) 
and one hotel. 

During the summer Mrs. Herbaugh taugh.t 
the first school, and the first religious services 
were also held, a Sunday-school having been 
organized and maintained during the summer, 
and preaching services having been instituted 
in the fall by Rev. Thomas H. Canfield, who 
had been sent here by the Congregational So- 
ciety, and by Rev. John Mark, a local Meth- 
odist preacher, who had settled in the town- 
ship. Thos. J. Flouronoy, a Baptist minister, 
also preached occasionally. 


A very great addition was made to the 
growth and improvement of the town during 
this year. Several firms of quite large means 
started in business, and a number of substantial 
residences were put up. Read Bros., a firm 
composed of John S., Merriaa and Elijah T., 
came early in the year, and at once commenced 
the construction of their store building on the 
west side of Commercial street, w'here they 
have ever since been in business. They built a 
large two-story frame building and put therein 
the first stock of hardware brought to town. 
C. M. Condon came in the spring, and put up 
a two-story frame, placing therein a large stock 
of general merchandise. Israel R. Fisher 
(Samuel Fisher, his brother, being then with 
him) located and put up a two-story frame, 
in which he commenced the sale of groceries, 
which he has continued until the present. Sev- 
eral other business houses of less magnitude 
than those I have mentioned were started this 
year ; so that at the close of the year there were 
100 frame buildings in town, a very fair pro- 
portion of which were occupied by business of 
one kind or another. Nearly all of the lines of 
business usually found in frontier towns were 
at that time fairly represented. 

The town had been started on an Indian 
reservation before the treaty with the Indians- 
releasing their rights thereto had been ap- 
proved, and even at this time the title to the 
same was in the General Government, and no 
provision had yet been made for anyone ac- 
quiring a title to his home; yet people who had 
come here had commenced preparations for per- 
manent homes, and most of them had no- 
thought of making a change. Those in busi- 
ness were making money, and all seemed con- 
tented and prosperous, and the year closed with 


Oswego having apparently as good a prospect 
as any of her competitors for making a pros- 
perous and permanent growth. 


The town company had originally claimed 
and bought the right of the original occupants 
to the southwest quarter of section 15 and the 
southeast quarter of section 16. Under the rul- 
ing of the land office the odd sections could not 
be entered under the joint resolution of April 
10, 1869, but the even sections could. It was 
arranged that the southeast quarter of section 
16 should be entered by D. W. Clover, who 
was then the oldest resident living upon the 
same. Immediately after making entry Mr. 
Clover conveyed the title to this quarter to 
the town company, which was thus enabled to 
make title to the several occupants then living 
and doing business thereon. As no titles could 
be obtained to lots on the southwest quarter of 
section 15, few persons settled thereon after 
that became known. After the contest with 
the railroads ended in the decision of the court 
against theij" claim, the passage of the law by 
Congress in 1876 provided for the entry of 
town-sites by the municipal authorities, when 
the town was incorporated, for the benefit of 
the occupants thereon. Some one had secured 
a provision to be inserted in the act authoriz- 
ing town companies to enter town-sites under 
certain conditions. A contest sprang up be- 
tween the Oswego- Town Company and the 
mayor and councilmen of the city of Oswego, 
for the entry of the southwest quarter of sec- 
tion 15. The city was represented in this con- 
test by its city attornev, and the town company 
by Colonel W. B. Glasse. The decision of the 
local land office was in favor of the city author- 
ities. From this an appeal was taken to the 

Commisioner of the General Land Office, and 
then to the Secretary of the Interior, both of 
whom sustained the decision of the land office 
in favor of the city authorities. This contest 
was ended in March, 1880, and thereupon the 
city conveyed title to the occupants for the lots 
occupied by them respectively. 


Up to July, 1866, the place we now desig- 
nate Oswego had been known as Little Town 
"from a time when the memory of man run- 
neth not to the contrary." 

Prior to the incorporation of the town 
company there were no records kept of its 
transactions except upon slips of paper. I have 
gone through the records thus kept so far as 
they have been preserved, and from them find 
the following facts: J. F. Newlon, William 
A. Hogaboom, C. H. Talbott and D. C. Rex- 
ford seem to have been the parties instru- 
mental in organizing the town company; at any 
rate they are the ones who receipted for the 
money paid for shares in the town company, 
so far as I can now ascertain from these frag- 
ments of records. The first records of any 
kind that I find are receipts, coming by date in 
the following order: 

"Neosho County, Kansas, July 9, 1866. 
"Received of N. Sloan thirty-one dollars, 
being one-half payment for said share in the 
town. Balance to be paid \Vhen the company 
is organized and title perfected. If not per- 
fected, the money refunded. 

"William A. Hogaboom." 

"Neosho County, Kansas, July 10, 1866. 
"Received of A. Kaho one-half payment 



for one town share, in a watch ; if title not per- 
fected, the watch returned in good order. 

"William A. Hogaboom." 


"Neosho County, Kansas, July ii, 1866. 
"Received of Daniel Matthias thirty-one 
dollars, being the one-half the money for a 
town share on the Matthews place. The bal- 
ance due when the company perfect their ar- 
rangements and a good and sufficient title is 
had, but the above money to be returned if said 
arrangements are not consummated. 

"William A. Hogaboom." 

"Received of D. W. Clover thirty-one di:)l- 
lars, being one-half the pay of a share in Little 
Town. C. H. Talbott. 

"Little Town, July 12, 1866." 

The first record of the minutes of any meet- 
ing being held is the following: 

"Little Town, Neosho County, Kans., 

July 12, 1866. 
"The shareholders of the Town Company 
of Little Town met for the purpose of organiza- 
tion. Mr. D. W. Clover was called to the 
chair. On motion, Dr. J. F. Newlon was 
elected president pro tciii., Wm. A. Hogaboom, 
vice-president pro tern., and H. C. Bridgman, 
secretary pro tern. Moved that a committee 
of three be appointed to draft by-laws for the 
company. Carried." 

It will thus be seen that upon July 12, 1866, 
the proposed town is still designated Little 
Town. The first time I find the word "Os- 
wego" written is in the following instrument : 

"Oswego. Kansas, July 17, 1866. 
"This entitles the holder, T. J. Buntain, to 

one full share in the Town Company of Os- 
wego, Neosho county, Kansas, on his comply- 
ing with the rules and regulations of the Town 
Company of said town of Oswego. 
"J. F. Newlon, President. 
"H. C. Bridgman, Secretary of Town Co." 

There is no record now to be found of the 
exact time when it was done, nor of the action 
taken in changing from Little Town to Os- 
wego, but it is apparent from the instruments 
copied above that some time between the 12th 
and I7tli of July the change of name was made. 
I am informed that at a meeting of the town 
company D. W. Clover suggested the name 
of Oswego for the proposed town, and some 
other member of the company, probably J. Q. 
Cowell, suggested Vernon. A ballot was tak- 
en, and a majority of the stockholders voted in 
favor of choosing the name "Oswego;" and 
from that time on Oswego was the designa- 
tion of the settlement formerly known as Little 

On August 3, 1867, J. Q. Cowell, C. C. 
Clover, J. F. Newlon, D. W. Clover, T. J. 
Flouronoy, T. J. Buntain and D. M. Clover 
signed articles of incorporation, which were 
acknowledged before D. W. Clover, justice of 
the peace, and the charter thus prepared and 
signed, was, on August 10, 1867, filed in the 
office of the Secretary of State, and the com- 
pany had a corporate existence from that date. 
The company's book contains no record of the 
meeting, but on a scrap of paper I find the 
minutes of a meeting held September 24th, and 
while the figures representing the year are not 
very distinct, I take it to be 1867. This being 
soon after the incorporation, it was evidently 
the first meeting of the incorporators after re- 
ceiving the charter. The minutes show that 
"on motion to organize and elect directors," 



the following were elected : J. F. Newlon, T. 
J. Flouronoy, D. W. Clover, D. M. Clover, 
and N. F. Carr. On the same day J. F. New- 
lon was elected president, D. W. Clover vice- 
president, Nelson F. Carr secretary, and D. M. 
Clover, treasurer. On November 26, 1867, R. 
W. Wright was elected secretary in place of 
Mr. Carr, resigned. On February 10, 1868, 
a new board of directors having been elected, 
D. W. Clover was elected president, R. W. 
Wright, secretary, and A. L. Austin, treasurer. 
On January 9, 1869, J. F. Waskey was elected 
president, and M. Reed secretary of the com- 
pany, and they remained the officers of the 
company during its further corporate existence. 


To the town company thus organized and 
operated, Oswego owed a very large degree of 
her growth and prosperity. While the town 
company could secure no title to its site until 
the fall of 1869, it promised from the first lib- 
eral donations to all enterprises which it was 
believed would be for the public good. Each 
church organization was given lots of its own 
selection to an extent of 100 feet front; a half 
block was donated for a school-site; a build- 
ing was erected and donated to the county 
for a court-house; a county jail was erected; 
donations were made to the first newspaper; 
and, until the close of 1869, anyone building 
a house of a certain dimension had donated 
to him the lot on which it stood. 


The first stone building to be erected in the 
place was the school-house, in 1869. During 
this year the Congregational church was com- 
menced, and finished about the close of the 
year. The first stone business house was 
erected on the southwest corner of block 32, 

in the summer of 1869, by W. M. Johnson. 
The walls were laid that year, but it was not 
completed until 1870. In 1874 H. S. Coley, 
W. H. Robey and Nelson Case purchased lots 
I and 2, block 38, and laid a foundation there- 
on with a view of erecting a brick building. 
These parties sold the lots, however, to Sam- 
uel Carpenter, who erected the brick building 
now standing thereon; this was the first 
brick building in the place. One room of it was 
occupied June i, 1875, by the firm of Mont- 
gomery & Carpenter as a store, and the other 
room was occupied by Hobart & Condon as a 
bank. In 1879 the Masons put up their temple 
on the west side of block 32. The opera house 
was built in 1879, on the north side of Fourth 
avenue. In 1880, after the fire on the west 
side of Commercial street, arrangements were 
made for the erection of brick buildings in 
their place, and during that season the entire 
east side of block 33, with the exception of 
the northeast corner building, was covered 
with a row of uniform brick buildings. The 
following year Mr. Symmes completed the row 
by the erection of the one at the north end. 
The city building, at the southeast corner of 
block 38, was commenced in 1883 ^^^ finished 
early in 1884. In 1887 L. Sawyer & Co. 
erected a fine two-story stone building on the 
east side of block 38. The First National 
Bank building was erected in 1885; this was 
the first three-story brick in town. In 1890 
Mr. Knight put up a very fine three-story 
building at the southeast corner of block 25, 
in place of the old frame Oswego house. Os- 
wego was thus furnished with one of the best 
hotels in this part of the State. 


It was believed by our citizens that the 
Neosho cut-off, commencing just below the 


dam and running south near the foot of the 
-bluff and striking the river again at a point 
as nearly as possible south from the place of 
beginning, would furnish an immense water- 
power. The river at this place taking such a 
large bend to the east, the fall in several miles 
of its flow could, it was thought, be concen- 
trated into a comparatively short space by 
turning the channel down this cut-ofif. In 
1 87 1 a survey was made, and a report pub- 
lished that 19 feet of fall could thus be secured. 
But no steps were ever taken to make availa- 
ble this apparently wasting' power, farther 
than to organize a company and make plans 
on paper. In January, 1874, W. T. Cunning- 
ham and others obtained a charter for the Os- 
wego Canal and Manufacturing Company. 

On the night of April 5, 1873, a severe hail 
storm came from the southwest, and broke 
nearly every pane of glass on the south and 
west sides in very nearly all the houses in town. 
The following day was Sunday and the town 
had a forlorn appearance. Not enough glass 
could be found in town to replace those 
broken, and for several days bed quilts and 
other garments furnished a conspicuous pro- 
tection from the weather. 

September 29, 1881, a wind storm in the na- 
ture of a cyclone passed over Oswego, scatter- 
'ing the lumber of Sharp's lumber 3^ard, blow- 
ing down the porch at Mr. Tuttle's house, 
north of the Congergational church, and do- 
ing some other damage. 

The town was visited by a tornado on July 
7, 1895, which blew down the iron stand-p'pe 
belonging to the water works. 

The following fires occurred according to 
their respective dates : Jennings packing estab- 
lishment, on July 2, 1879; the south end of the 
frame row on the west side of Commercial 
street, March 8, 1880; Grant's livery barn, 
with thirteen houses, February 18, 1882; 
"Frisco" depot, December 11, 1882; Miller's 
mill, February 21, 1884; the row of buildings- 
opposite the Oswego House, February 10, 
1886; Shotliff's wagon factory, April 27, 1885; 
Hall's flouring mill, January 14, 1886; Judge 
Barnes' dwelling house took fire and burned 
July 4, 1874; the Champion fire extinguisher,, 
which had recently been purchased, had been 
taken that day to the celebration at IMontana, 
and the fire company were much annoyed on 
reaching home and learning that in their ab- 
sence this fire had taken place. 


November 28, 1870, a vacancy existing 
on account of J. D. Coulter, the postmaster, 
absconding, and there being several applicants 
for the position, an election was held to deter- 
mine who s'hould be appointed. A. W. Picker- 
ing, who had been Coulter's deputy, and who 
had charge of the ofifice, was chosen over E. O, 
Kimball, J. W, Minturn, J. A. Miller, R. J. 
Elliott, and C. M. Gilkey. These were not in 
the days when the spirit of civil-service re- 
form predominated, and the election cut no' 
figure in the matter of the appointment. 


In the fall of 1870 Nelson Case, B. W. 
Perkins, H. C. Hall and some other parties 
organized for the purpose of securing lectures- 



and aiding in literary enterprises, and on Oc- 
tober 6th, of that year, obtained a charter for 
the Oswego Library and Lecture Association. 
Under its auspices Henry Clay Dean delivered 
his lecture on "The Old Senate." This was 
about the extent of the work of this associa- 

On July 19, 1870, a musical association was 
formed, with E. W. Davis as president. They 
at once arranged to give a concert on Septem- 
ber 9th. This concert proved to be a great 
success, and on October 24th and 26th they 
rendered the cantata of Queen Esther. Febru- 
ary 27th, 1871, a brass band was organized 
under the leadership of William Wells. In Jan- 
uary, 1872, Mr. Wells organized a ladies' cor- 
net band, which soon became quite proficient, 
and was in favor at public entertainments. In 
January, 1873, Prof. Perkins held a musical 
institute. In May, 1874, a new musical insti- 
tute was formed, of which J. A. Gates was 
president. On October 15, 1877, a musical in- 
stitute commenced, under the direction of Prof. 
Teats, of New York. F. B. McGill, H. S. 
Coley, E. W. Ross, F. Beal and L. C. Howard 
worked hard for its success and it proved a 
great benefit in developing the musical talent 
of the town. 

workmen's association. 

April 27, 1872, the mechanics and worlonen 
of Oswego formed an association for their 
mental as well as financial improvement. J. 
A. Miller was elected president and George C. 
Sarvis secretary. F. B. McGill, David Bran- 
son and James T. Rierson were appointed a 
committee on lectures and educational mat- 
ters. A reading-room was opened, and supplied 
with reading matter by the members bringing 

books and periodicals, so that each had the ad- 
vantages of what all controlled. It was not a 
very long-lived institution; its history, like 
that of so many undertakings, shows that it 
is easy to start almost any kind of an enter- 
prise for the public welfare, but that if it is to 
be made permanent and to be a lasting bene- 
fit, some one must be willing to sacrifice him- 
self for the good of others; such a person is 
not always to be found. 


About the last of January, 1874, a society 
was formed by those who had been inclined to 
dissipation, to assist in at least a partial refor- 
mation. They agreed not to drink, either not 
at all for a certain length of time, or to ab- 
stain from drinking under certain circum- 
stances. It was said to have had quite a percep- 
tible influence on its members, and, at least for 
a time, to have seriously affected the receipts 
of the 'saloons. William Wells was president 
and L. C. Howard secretary of the organiza- 
tion. A charter was obtained January 28, 


In 1873 a number of Oswego citizens who 
were somewhat inclined to literary and scien- 
tific studies organized a society for the pur- 
pose of study and the discussion of subjects in 
which they were interested and which might 
be deemed beneficial and of practical import- 
ance. Meetings were usually held weekly, at 
the residence of some of the members of the 
society. Some one was appointed to prepare a 
paper to be read at a subsequent meeting 
and the paper thus presented formed a basis 
for discussion. This society was kept up for 



several years, and proved to be of very great 
interest and benefit. Among those who were 
prominently connected with the work were 
C. O. Perkins, Dr. W. S. Newlon, Mary A. 
Higby, Ferd. Beyle, F. B. McGill, together 
with many others who were less conspicuous 
in its workings. 


The Murphy temperance meetings which 
had been held during the fall of 1877 resulted 
in the organization of a society for the pur- 
pose of opening a reading-room. ■ A donation 
of a few books and periodicals was secured, 
and a subscription was taken to raise money to 
pay the necessary expenses of opening the 
room. Nelson Case wrote an article which 
appeared in the Independent, in October, 
1887, urging that steps be taken to make this 
reading-room, for which a start had been 
made, a permanent institution. His suggestion 
met with favor, and a committee was appointed 
to secure a charter. The charter having been 
prepared and properly signed and acknowl- 
edged, it was filed in the office of the Secre- 
tary of State on December 24, 1877. A board 
of 13 directors was appointed. On January 5, 
1878, the directors met and organized, elect- 
ing the following officers: President, C. O. 
Perkins; secretary, C. L. Wyman; treasurer, 
B. F. Hobart; executive committee, Nelson 
Case, chairman, Merrit Read, F. H. Atchin- 
son. Mr. Perkins remained president as long as 
he lived. F. H. Atchinsin, before the close of the 
first year, succeeded Mr. Wyman as secretary 
and continued to fill that position during the 
next nine years. Mr. Case remained chair- 
man of the executive committee during its 
first ten years. Upon the death of Mr. Perk- 

ins, on April 30, 1887, the duties of the presi- 
dent were performed by the chairman of the 
executive committee until the annual meeting 
in December of that year, when Nelson Case 
was elected president; J. R. Hill, secretary; 
C. M. Condon, treasurer; F. H. Atchinson, E. 
P. Sawyer and R. L. Sharp, executive commit- 
tee. The following year Mr. Hill was made 
chairman of the executive committee in place 
of Mr. Atchinson, the other officers remain- 
ing as last announced, all of whom have held 
the same positions to the present. The asso- 
ciation has maintained a free reading-room, 
kept open daily with very slight exceptions, 
from the time of its organization to the pres- 
ent. It has never invested very largely in 
books, but has acquired quite a fair library. 
Its tables have constantly been kept supplied 
with the best periodicals. For a number of 
years the association had its reading-room 
in the city building, but during later years it 
maintained its reading-rooms, in connection 
with the Y. M. C. A. rooms, in the center of 
the business part of toAvn. The association 
has provided a course of literary entertain- 
ments, consisting of lectures and concerts, 
nearly every season since its organization. A 
number of the best lecturers on the platform 
have been secured, as well as first-class musi- 
cal talent. In more recent vears the policy of 
home lectures has been inaugurated, and some 
of the leading men of the State have been se- 
cured to give lectures in these courses. By this 
means the people have been furnished with a 
class of entertainments of high standard, and 
the association has reaped something of a rev- 
enue to assist in maintaining its reading-ronm. 
During the past few years the association has 
been partially disorganized, and has not done 
the aggressive work it did during its earl-er 



On February 8, 1870, a majority of the 
residents having petitioned therefor, the pro- 
bate judge made an order incorporating Os- 
wego as a town, and appointed R. W. Wright, 
J. F. Waskey, Merrit Read, John F. Newlon 
and W. M. Johnson trustees. The trustees met 
February 23d, and organized by electing W. M. 
Johnson chairman, and appointed John D. 
Coulter clerk. Nelson Case was employed by 
the trustees as counsel, and assisted them in 
preparing ordinances. 

On March 21, 1870, a census as taken, 
which s'howed more than 1,000 inhabitants in 
the town. An ordinance was passed declaring 
Oswego organized as a city of the third class. 
The first election was held April 4th, at which 
the following ofificers were elected: Mayor, 
J. F. Newlon; councilmen, D. W'. Clover, R. 
W. Wright, William Wells. J. T. Pierson, and 
E. R. Trask. On April 6tb the mayor and 
councilmen organized and held their first meet- 
ing. J. D,. Coulter was appointed clerk ; James 
R. Morrison, marshal, and F. A. Bettis. attor- 
ney. On March 16, 1871, an ordinance was 
passed declaring Oswego a city of the second 
•class by virtue of chapter 59 of the laws of 
1 87 1, permitting certain cities therein named 
to organize as cities of the second class. The 
city has continued to act as a city of the second 
class from that time to the present. However, 
in 1890, in a case wherein Oswego township 
was plaintiff and Joseph Anderson was de- 
fendant, the supreme court decided that the act 
above referred to was unconstitutional, and 
therefore the organization as a city of the sec- 
ond class thereunder was illegal. In fact, it 
was always considered doubtful whether or not 
this act had any validity, and in 1880 the nec- 
sary steps were taken to secure an organization 

as a city of the second class under the general 
laws. On June 18, 1880, the Government is- 
sued a proclamation declaring Oswego a city 
of the second class. 

Mayors: 1870, J. F. Newlon; 1871, Mer- 
rit Read; 1872, J. F. Waskey; 1873-76, R. 
W. Wright; 1876-87, C. M. Condon; 1887-89, 
H. C. Cook; 1889-91, J. W. Marley; 1891-95, 
J. M. Grant; 1895-97, J- B. Montgomery; 
1897-99, R- O- Deming; 1 899-1 901, George S. 
Liggett. Clerks: February 23d to August 15, 

1870, J. D. Coulter; August 15, 1870, to Feb- 
ruary 6, 1871, J. B. Zeigler; E. E. Hastings 
was appointed, but did not qualify; March 10, 

1 87 1, to April 10, 1 87 1, H. E. Porter; April 
10, 1871, to May 16, 1872, C. F. Winton; 
May 16, 1872, to April 30, 1878, Nelson Case; 
May 6, 1878, to Janaury 3, 1890, Thomas Bul- 
wer; January 3, 1890, to April 10, 1891, J. D, 
H. Reed; April 10, 1891, to April 8, 1895, W. 
K. Orr; April 8, 1895, to April 16, 1897, J 
W. Minturn; April 16, 1897, to April 8, 1898 
W. K. Orr; April 15, 1898, to February 27 
1899, Jesse Richcreek; February 27, 1899, to 
April 6, 1900, L. H. Kemper; April 6, 1900, 
Marion Parks. 


Pottery. — In 1868 Mr. Shanks operated 
a pottery, and turned out several kilns of stone- 
ware. In the spring of 1870, D. and C. E. 
Watts established a pottery in the east part of 
town, from which they sent out quite an 
amount of stone-ware that season. 

Pork-Packing. — Mr. Jennings was the 
first to start this enterprise. He erected a stone 
building in the southwest part of the town, in 
which, in 1878, he commenced the slaughter 
and packing of 'hogs. Edgar Leonard and 
George Schwartz succeeded Mr. Jennings in 


the business. The establishment having- been 
mostly destroyed by fire, the business was dis- 
continued after having been conducted with a 
fair degree of success for two or three years. 

Wagon Factory. — In June, 1882, J. Shot- 
liff commenced work on his wagon factory in 
the south part of town, which was put in oper- 
ation before the close of the year. Mr. Shot- 
liff operated this until it was destroyed by fire 
in 1885. On account of the loss then sus- 
tained, he was unable to again commence busi- 
ness. During the time he was running his fac- 
tory he turned out a large number of wagons, 
and did a good business. 

While no one else has ever carried on the 
manufacture of wagons at this place on such 
an extensive scale as did Mr. Shotliff while he 
conducted the business, there have been others 
who 'have done a good business in a smaller 
way. During the lifetime of David Branson, 
he and Mr. Marsh made wagons. J. C. Patter- 
son has been engaged in the business almost 
from the start of the town. Mr. Gordon and 
Mr. Peters have likewise been in the business, 
and W. K. Orr has conducted a carriage- 
trimming shop for many years. 

Tile Factory.— In June, 1885, H. C. 
Draper moved his tile factory to Oswego from 
across the river, where he had operated it for 
several years. 

Cotton Gin. — In November, 1888, D. S. 
and J. C. Romine and A. Chambers purchased 
machinery and commenced the operation of a 
cotton gin. On December 11, 1888, they shipped 
six bales of cotton over the "Frisco" to St. 
Louis, which was the first shipment from this 
point. The gin was run several years, but was 
finally moved to Chetopa. C. A. Wilkin was 
interested in its operation a part of the time. 

A Cheese Factory was started on the 
south side of Fourth avenue near the M. K. & 

T. Ry. depot, in 1892, which it is hoped will 
prove successful; still for two or three years 
past little or no use has been made of it. 

Creamery. — In 1899, a company was 
formed for the purpose of establishing a cream- 
ery. Most of the capital was furnished by 
farmers in the vicinity, w'ho were interested in 
the enterprise. It is said to have been a profit- 
able venture, and a g-reat accommodation to 
those having milk to dispose of. Several aux- 
iliary skimming stations are maintained. 

Evaporator. — Two or three parties have 
for a time conducted the business of drying 
and evaporating fruit. In 1892 a small plant 
was put in with the expectation of enlarging it 
and adding a canning factory. 

In September, 1870, Macon, Krell & Cow- 
ell commenced the operation of their steam 
mill, the erection of whic'h had been in progress 
for about a year. This firm were not able to 
continue the operation of their mill a g-reat 
length of time, owing to financial embarrass- 
ment, and it was for a while in 1871 in the 
hands of Mr. Ross as receiver. The mortgage 
on the property was foreclosed, and the sale had 
throug<h court. In October, 1873, R. S. Math- 
ews became the owner of this mill. Subse- 
quently, Miller & Sons purchased and ran this 
mill Until it burned, early in 1884. 

In October, 1870, Howell & Rathburn com- 
menced the foundation of a three-and-one-half 
story frame flouring mill on the bank of the 
river north of Oswego, which was run by water 
except v^f'hen the river was low. H. C. Hall 
became the owner of Mr. Rathburn's interest 
in this mill; the firm of Howell & Hall oper- 
ated it until its destruction by fire, in January, 


In June, 1881, Mr. Eickerman arranged for 
the erection of the brick mill in the west part 
of town, the walls of which were put up dur- 
ing the summer, and at the close of the year it 
•was ready for business. Mr. Eickerman and 
G.'W. Bird were the original proprietors. 
There have been several different ownerships 
of the mill. For some years past a corpora- 
tion,— the Pearl Roller Mills,— in which S. 
B. Miller and G. W. Burdick are the principal 
stockholders, has owned and operated this mill, 
which is one of the largest and best equipped 
mills in this part of the state. 

In the summer of 1892, Kiddoo. Black & 
Co. erected a new mill south of the St. Louis 
& San Francisco Railroad, between Illinois 
and Michigan streets. This mill is now owned 
(principally or wholly) by C. M. Condon, and 
is known as the Oswego Roller Mill. 

The First Bank. — The first bank in the 
■county was started in Oswego, by W. M. John- 
son, in October, 1868. During that year and 
the fore part of 1869 it was conducted on the 
north side of Fourth avenue. In the summer 
of 1869 he erected a small frame building on 
the northeast corner of block 38, in which he 
thereafter conducted the business. For a short 
time only A. L. Austin was associated with Mr. 
Johnson in the banking business. This bank 
continued to do business until the spring of 
1870, wihen Mr. Johnson was forced to make an 
assignment. His failure was caused by at- 
tempting to build a town instead of confining 
himself to conducting a bank. He had great con- 
fidence in the outcome of the countv and of the 
town, and expected to realize very large profits 
from the money he could invest in real estate. 
He secured two corners, viz., the southwest cor- 

ner of block 32 and the northeast corner of 
block 38, and on these intended to erect, for the 
time, very fine buildings. He went far enough 
to get the walls completed for the building on 
the southwest corner of block 32, now owned 
.by Mr. Perkins ; in doing so he had used more 
money than he was able to control belonging 
to himself, and during the spring of 1870, 
when depositors were wanting their money, he 
found himself unable to cash their checks. 
Every dollar of his property was consumed, and 
still his creditors were far from being paid. 
What might have been a ^'ery profitable busi- 
ness proved his financial ruin, simply because 
he indulged in a spirit of speculation. 

About the middle of July, 1870, B. F. Ho- 
bart and H. L. Taylor came to Oswego and 
opened the next bank that was started in the 
town. About July i, 1871, Mr. Taylor retired 
from the business, and was succeeded by J. C. 
Longwell, Mr. Hobart's father-in-law. Mr. 
Longwell having died, the business came un- 
der the management of B. F. Hobart. On 
July I, 1877, C. M. Condon became a partner 
of Mr. Hobart, and thereafter the firm of Ho- 
bart & Condon conducted the business until the 
summer of 1882, when ]\Ir. Hobart sold his 
interest to Mr. Condon, who continued in sole 
control of the business until early in 1901, 
when be admitted his son, Wilbur F. Condon, 
as a member of the firm of Condon & Co. They 
have a very extensive business. 

State Bank of Oswego. — On August 
18, 1870, the State Bank of Oswego, with a 
paid-up-capital of $25,000, M. S. Adams be- 
ing president and J. H. Folks cashier, com- 
menced business. It only continued in business 
a few months, however, not finding a sufficient 
amount of business for two banks. 

The next bank to open its doors to the pub- 
lic was that conducted by George Brockway 


and H. C. Draper. It commenced business 
March 2, 1874. ilr. Draper desiring to retire, 
in 1876 C. F. Smith, upon the close of his offi- 
cial term as treasurer, became associated with 
Mr. Broclavay in this bank, and afterwards, 
in March, 1877, the sole manager of the same. 
This bank discontinued business September i, 

In 1880 H. A. Marley and his son, J. W. 
Marley, opened a bank and loan office, which 
business they conducted until April 11, 1887, 
when they were succeeded by the First State 
Bank, which in turn was succeeded by 

The Oswego State Bank, on May 5, 
1888. This bank has a paid-up capital of $50,- 
000, and has done a profitable business for a 
number of years. Its board of directors have 
been J. W. Marley, E. T. Reed. H. C. Cook, 
John M. Grant, Lee ^^'illiams, H. A. Marley, 
Fred Perkins; in 1891 Scott Taylor succeeded 
Mr. Cook. 

The First National Bank was char- 
tered in July and opened its doors for business 
the last of August, 1883. Its first officers were 
R. P. Clement, president: J. B. Montgomery, 
vice-president; F. C. Wheeler, cashier; C. F. 
Winton, assistant cashier. In January, 1885, 
C. Abbey succeeded Mr. Clement as president 
The last of 1886, Mr. Wheeler resigned, and 
was succeeded by H. C. Cook as cashier. On 
■April I, 1887, F. W. Keller became cashier, 
and served until September 16, 1890, when he 
was succeeded by J. M. Berry. On October 26, 
1888, R. O. Deming was elected president, in 
which position he continued until the bank went 
out of existence. The bank was capitalized at 
$60,000, and did a large and profitable busi- 
ness. It went into voluntary liquidation and 
dissolution in the fall of 1893, its stockholders 
preferring to organize under the state law. Its 
successor was 

The Labette County Bank. — This was 
incorporated with a capital stock of $25,000. 
R. O. Deming was president and J. M. Berry, 
cashier. In 1895, this bank went into volun- 
tary liquidation, leaving two banks in the city. 


The Oswego Building and Loan Asso- 
ciation. — This institution was organized in 
June, 1884, with an authorized capital of $50,- 
000. H. C. Draper was president, L. C. How- 
ard, secretary and E. T. Reed, treasurer. 

The Deming Investment Co. — On the 
last of December, 1887, the Deming Invest- 
ment Company was organized, and opened bus- 
iness on the first of January, 1888, with a paid- 
up capital of $50,000, since which time it has 
been increased, and is now $60,000. The firm 
of Winton & Deming had been in the loan busi- 
ness previous to this time for a number of 
years, and upon the organization of this com- 
pany it succeeded to the business of said firm. 
Nelson Case has been president, and R. O. 
Deming treasurer and manager of this com- 
pany from its organization. 

The Eastern Kansas Investment Co, 
—About the first of 1889, Fred Perkins, C. F. 
Winton, C. A. Wilkin, M. E. Williams, and 
a few other parties organized the Eastern Kan- 
sas Investment Co. for the purpose of conduct- 
ing a loan business. The company has done a 
good business. 


Upon laying out the town, the town com- 
pany designated block 52 as the city park. For 
a number of years it remained entirely unim- 
proved. A few years ago a number of the citi- 
zens undertook the work of its improvement, 
and set it out to trees. It now presents quite 
an attractive appearance. 



On February 12, 1887, about 40 ladies of 
the city formed themselves into a ladies' enter- 
tainment society, with the following ofificers: 
Mrs. Mary E. Perkins, president; Mrs. Hettie 
C. Hall, vice-president; Mrs. Franc Wilkin, 
secretary; and Mrs. Anna Sharp, treasurer. 
The purpose of the organization was to secure 
a site for and to improve a park. A number 
of entertainments were held, by means of 
which some money was raised, and in addition 
to this quite a sum was raised by subscription. 
A tract of ground was selected and purchased 
lying on the bluiT of the river north of the city 
and east of the water-works engine house. 
This is about as- far as the society has ever gone 
in its work of providing a park. There are 
a number of locations near the city with suffi- 
cient natural advantages to make a delightful 
resort, were a reasonable amount of money 
expended upon the improvements. 


For several years the only sidewalks in 
town consisted of platforms in front of the 
stores and public buildings. As the space be- 
tween these buildings grew less by the erec- 
tion of other new buildings, the platforms were 
connected and planks put down, so that there 
was a continuous sidewalk on the principal 
street so far as the stores extended. 

As early as July 21, 1870, notice was given 
by direction of the council for the construc- 
tion of certain sidewalks, but no further ac- 
tion was ever taken thereunder. The first 
sidewalk constructed outside the business part 
of town, and the first one built by direction of 
the city council, was on Illinois street, extend- 
ing from block 9 in Johnson & Folks' addition, 

to the Methodist church. This was built in 
pursuance of an order made by the council 
on March 6, 1874, on the petition of the 
requisite number of property-holders along the 
line. From this time on, sidewalks began to 
be gradually petitioned for and to be built 
over the residence part of the town, and for 
several years past nearly all streets of the city 
that are thickly inhabited have been supplied 
with good sidewalks. 

During the summer of 1878 Commercial 
street was graded from Fourth avenue to the 
Frisco depot, and put in good condition for 
travel. It was not until June, 1885, that a 
good plank sidewalk was laid on the south 
side of Fourth avenue from Commercial street 
to the M. K. & T. Ry. depot. 

During 1897 and 1898 especially, and to 
a certain extent since then, a great improve- 
ment has been made in the sidewalks of the 
city. A large amount of brick sidewalk has 
been laid. In addition to this improvement 
in sidewalks. Fourth avenue has been macad- 
amized from Commercial street to the M. K. 
& T. Ry. depot; this work was done in 1898. 

Few cities are better supplied with shade 
trees than is Oswego. All of the principal 
streets were at an early day set out with lines 
of trees, which have made a good growth, and 
now furnish abundant shade. The yards are 
also supplied with beautiful shade and orna- 
mental trees, and in the summer the place 
presents almost the appearance of a city built 
in a forest. 


Early in 18S2 a telephone plant was put in 
operation, connecting many of the business and 



dwelling 'houses, and was quite extensively 
used. Durino- the summer a line was put in 
connecting Oswego with Parsons, which was 
completed July 20th. This plant was only used 
for a few months to any great extent, and 
after a time all of the instruments were taken 

In 1896, and since then, telephonic com- 
munication between the various towns in the 
county, and with distant cities was resumed, 
and has been maintained and extended, so 
that at this time one can send messages over 
these lines to almost any point in the country. 


During 1887 a system of water-works was 
constructed, supplying the city with water from 
the Neosho river north of town. They were 
put in operation in the fall, and were accepted 
by the city about the last of November. 


An electric light plant was put in during 
the spring and summer of 1888. On July 12th 
of that year the lights were first turned on. 
After being run a few months, its operation 
■was for a time suspended. A change of owner- 
ship, however, was had, and the lights were 
soon again turned on, and have been in opera- 
tion ever since. At the time the electric light 
plant was put into operation, the city con- 
tracted for the lighting of its streets by arc 
lights, but street lighting by electricity proved 
to be too expensive for the revenues of the 
city, and so was discontinued after a trial of 
two or three years. The incandescent lights 
in dwellings and business houses are main- 


Hais been found but not in sufficient quantities 
to be utilized. 


For a great many years Oswego was great- 
ly burdened with its bonded indebtedness. 
When the M. K. & T. Ry. was constructed 
in 1870, Oswego township, including the city, 
gave the company $100,000 in bonds to secure 
the road. A few years later the township and 
city united voted bonds to the amount of $80,- 
000 to secure an east and west road, now known 
as the St. L. & S. F. R. R. All of the $80,- 
000 issue of bonds were executed and part of 
them were delivered to the contractors who 
had done grading; the rest were put in escrow, 
and subsequently a few of them were returned 
to the officers, but the most of them became 
outstanding liabilities against the township. 
The construction of the road was suspended 
for several years. To secure the completion 
of the road, besides a large contribution in 
cash by individuals, Oswego city issued $30,- 
000 in bonds and Oswego township, $15,000 
in bonds. For the purpose of bridging the 
Neosho, the township and city issued $20,000. 
In addition to all this, the city issued $18,000 
for the construction of the two school-houses 
we are now using. 

Most of these bonds were bearing a high 
rate of interest, and none a rate less than 6 
per cent. To pay this indebtedness was be- 
yond the power of the people residing in these 
municipalities. For many 5'ears no payment 
whatever was made on principal or interest of 
the railroad and bridge bonds. Litigation en- 
sued which greatly increased the burden. The 


interest was all the time accumulating, and be- 
fore anything was done toward solving the 
difficulty the indebtedness was, perhaps, much 
more than double what it had been originally. 

Finally, in 1885, efforts to effect a com- 
promise of the principal part of this indebted- 
ness were successful. The last issue of bonds 
to the east and west road and the school bonds 
were not included in the compromise and were 
to be paid in full. But the $100,000 M. K. 
& T., $80,000 M. C. & N. W., $20,000 bridge 
bonds, making $200,000 principal, and prob- 
ably as much more in accumulated interest, 
were taken up, and in their place $154,000 
funding bonds of the city and township were 

On these funding bonds the interest was 
paid soniewhat regularly; still there was more 
litigation and costs were incurred, and cjuite an 
amount of interest was allowed to accumulate. 
In 1897 these municipalities started in to re- 
lieve themselves of indebtedness. A small 
amount had been paid prior thereto, but near- 
ly all of the indebtedness above recited was 
then outstanding. The people heroically im- 
posed on themselves a rate of taxation which, 
to name, would seem impossible to endure. 
For four years this extraordinary rate of debt 
paying 'has been going on, and now the peo- 
ple have the satisfaction of knowing the debt 
is reduced to $85,000, which on the basis they 
have been giving will in four more years be 
entirely extinguished. 



On June 19, 1869, W. K. Hayes located 
on the north half of the southwest quarter of 
section 19, North township, and in connection 
w'ith Milton W. Eves opened a small stock of 

general merchandise. Mr. Hayes was on 
September 2~,, 1869, appointed postmaster of 
a new postoffice established at that point and 
named Mendota — "the place of meeting." 
Whether it was the place of meeting of the 
two branches of the Labette, or the two 
branches of the M. K. & T., neither of the 
latter of which was then located, or of the 
traveling public, perhaps it is too early to write 
with interest. When a hundred years of tra- 
dition and myth shall have gathered round it, 
the future historian can write a chapter upon 
the founding of the office which will be read 
with delight. But as a sober, historical fact, 
and to somewhat curtail the wings of mythol- 
ogy, it may be recorded that it was because of 
the proximity of the site to the confluence of 
the Big and Little Labette that the name ]\Ien- 
dota was chosen. In the winter of 1869 j\Ir. 
Hayes took his goods to a house he had built 
farther south, near Steel's mill, at the junction 
of the two Labettes ; but in the spring he re- 
moved back to his old stand. 

In 1870 J. J. Pierson succeeded Mr. Eves 
as a partner of Mr. Hayes, and the firm Hayes 
& Pierson continued in business at this point 
until November, 1870, when, the town-site of 
Parsons having been located, they moved to 
a point on the east side of the railroad track, 
northeast of the passenger depot, and just 
north of where the Belmont House now stands. 

Sections 18 and 19 in North township, and 
13 and 24 in Walton township, formed the 
body of land selected by the company on which 
to lay out a town. Most of this land was al- 
ready occupied by actual settlers, some of 
whom had acquired, or could obtain, title, an.d 
some of whom had only a squatter's right.. 



John Leonard was on the southeast quarter of 
section 19, Abraham Fults on the northeast 
quarter, John Kendall on the northwest quar- 
ter, W. K. Hayes on the north half and Aaron 
Midkiff on the south half of the southwest 
quarter of the same section ; John Davis was on 
the northeast quarter of section 18, Abraham 
Gary on the northwest quarter, and Mr. Simp- 
son on the southwest quarier of the same sec- 
tion; Anson Kellogg was on the southwest 
quarter and S. Eves on the northeast quarter 
of section 24; Henry F. Baker was on the 
southeast quarter of section 13. and H. L. 
Partridge on the southwest quarter and George 
Briggs on the northwest quarter of the same 
section. Some of the remainder was claimed 
by non-residents. Several of these parties 
were unwilling to dispose of their interest, 
and negotiations to secure title were in prog- 
ress for some time. 


The first intimation that the public gen- 
erally bad that a town was to be located at 
this point was on October 26, 1870, when L. 
F. Olney, a civil engineer, got off the train 
and inquired of some parties at work on the 
ground where the city of Parsons is now 
built, if they could tell him where Parsons was 
located, saying he had come to lay off a town. 
Nothing was done by him for several days 
excepting to look over the ground and make 
observations. On Sunday, November 6, 1870, 
C. G. Wait, the railroad engineer, located the 
connection of the Sedalia and Junction Gity 
branches of the M. K. & T., and two days 
later Frye & Pierce, grade contractors, broke 
dirt at this junction. It was known that here 
was to be the railroad town, and, before the 
survey commenced, in addition to two or three 

business houses which preceded it, on Novem- 
ber ir, 1870, John Austin had on the ground 
the first dwelling put thereon, aside from those 
which were there at the time of the location. 
He put it upon what proved to be the north- 
east corner of Gentral and Crawford avenues, 
and at once occupied it for a dwelling, and 
also for keeping boarders. In front of this 
building the next spring he set out some maple 
trees, which were the first trees planted in the 
place. On these premises Dr. G. W. Gabriel 
has for many years had his home. It was 
about the middle of November when Mr. Ol- 
ney commenced the survey of the town-site, 
and it was not completed until about the mid- 
dle of January. 


Isaac T. Goodnow, N. S. Goss, F. C. W'hite, 
O. B. Gunn, Norman Eastman and Robert 
S. Stevens were the incorporators of the town 
company. The charter was filed in the office 
of the Secretary of State October 24, 1870, 
and authorized the company to purchase lands 
and lay off a town at and adjacent to section 
19, township 31, range 20. Tiie company was 
formed expressly for the purpose of laying oft' 
and building a railroad town. It was believed 
that the junction of the two branches of the 
M. K. & T. was the most feasible point for 
the location of a town, where would almost 
certainly be located the machine shops and of- 
fices. Of course these parties knew the point 
where this junction must be made before their 
incorporation, for not only was section 19 
designated in the cbarter as the central point, 
but their surveyor was on the ground before 
the railroad engineer had actually designated 
the connecting point. The intention being to 
have a railroad town, of course no more appro- 



priate name could have been selected than that 
of the president of the road, who would there- 
by, if for no other reason, be interested in its 
support and growth. 


The town having- been located, the com- 
pany soon encountered difficulties in acquiring 
title to as large a body of land as they hoped 
to secure, and we may readily believe that it 
was for the purpose of influencing these par- 
ties to make terms that the action of the town 
company — an account of which is given be- 
low — was taken, rather than with any serious 
intention of carrying out the determination 
therein expressed, for no steps were taken look- 
ing to an abandonment of the sire which had 
been selected and partly surveyed; but for 
some purpose, probably by the company's di- 
rection, certain resolutions by it adopted were 
published in several papers, and more or less 
was said through the press on "Parsons de- 
funct." I will here refer to what appeared In 
but one paper, although the same was copied 
in the county papers and more or less com- 
mented on. 

Near the close of 1870 the following ap- 
peared in the Humboldt Union. 

"Neosha Falls, Kan., Dec. 22. 
"Eds. Union : Inclosed you have resolu- 
tions passed by the directors of Parsons Town 
Company, and confirmed by the president of 
the M. K. & T. Co. You will see that the 
present town-site of Parsons is abandoned, as 
the orders are to erect not even a station house 
there. If you think these facts are of sufficient 
interest to your readers, you are at liberty to 
publish the accompanying resolutions. 
"Very respectfully, 


"At a meeting of the board of directors of 
the Parsons Town Company, held at Sedalia, 
Mo., on the 14th inst., the following resolu- 
tions were unanimously adopted: 

''Whereas, The Missouri, Kansas & Texas 
Railway Company having decided to locate its 
machine shops and other important buildings 
elsewhere than at the junction of its Sedalia 
and Neosho divisions, thus rendering the build- 
ing up of any large town at the junction im- 
practicable : 

"Resolved, That the board of directors of 
the Parsons Town Company hereby abandon 
all idea of locating or building a town on sec- 
tions 18 or 19, in town 31, of range 19 east, 
or anywhere in the vicinity, the decision of 
said railway company above referred to ren- 
dering such action necessary. 

"Resolved, That the treasurer of said town 
company is hereby directed to sell all lands 
intended for town-site purposes at such price 
as he may deem fit and proper, at the earliest 
day practicable. 

"R. S. Stevens, President. 
"Jno. R. Wheat, Secretary." 


The difficulties encountered by the company 
in acquiring title having been overcome, and 
the plat having been surveyed and placed on 
record, the sale of lots commenced on March 
8, 1 87 1. Prior to this time all who had located 
had done so without any written permission 
or promise of obtaining title, but with the un- 
derstanding that when the company had per- 
fected its arrangements, they would be entitled 
to procure their lots at a reasonable price. 
There was quite a strife for the honor of be- 
ing the purchaser of the first lot. Colonel 
Willard Davis was the agent of the town com- 


pany, and Abraham Cary was successful in 
bringing enougii influence to bear to get from 
him the first deed issued by the town com- 
pany. It was for lots 14, 15 and 16 in block 
42, where the opera house now stands. The 
other parties on the ground obtained title as 
fast as deeds could be executed and terms 
agreed on, and from this time on the per- 
manency of building and business was as- 


When so many were coming in about the 
same time, and no records of the names when 
locations were made having been kept, it is 
difficult to speak with certainty as to the pre- 
cise order in which firms were established, 
and as to who is entitled to the honor of be- 
ing the fiiTst one to open up his line of business 
in the new town, but the old settlers seem to 
agree substantially upon the following : Sipple 
Brothers, from Dayton, and Hayes & Pierson, 
from Mendota, were on the ground about the 
same time, and there is a difference of opinion 
as to which was there first. 

Aside from the houses that have been 
placed by the settlers prior to the location of 
the town, the first house to be put upon the 
town-site, probably, was a store building be- 
longing to William H. and John I. Sipple, 
w'hich they had put up during the summer at 
Dayton, some five or si.x miles below Parsons, 
and which they moved on wagons and located 
upon what was afterwards laid off as lots i. 
2 and 3, in block 19, subsequently occupied 
by the Abbott House. They arrived with their 
building on November 5, 1870, and were the 
first to open a stock of goods, which consisted 
principally of groceries and provisions. If I 
am right in assigning Sipple Brothers the first 
location, then the next store to be opened was 

by Hayes & Pierson, who almost immediately 
after the arrival of Sipple Brothers, if they did 
not precede them, removed their little frame 
building from where Mr. Hayes had at one 
time kept store, at Steel's mill at the forks of 
the Labette, as already described, and located 
it on the east side of the railroad track, just 
about where the Belmont House now stands,, 
and opened therein a general stock of mer- 
chandise. The building afterwards formed a 
part of the Belmont premises. E. K. Cur- 
rant brought his store building from Dayton 
and located it upon what became lot i of block 
25, on Skiddy, now Washington avenue. He 
associated with him in business Messrs. Cook 
and Allen, and opened out the most extensive: 
stock of general merchaixlise that was then kept 
in town. Adam Gebert and Abraham Cary 
located on lot 2, block 25, next to Mr. Currant,, 
and opened the first hardware store in town. 
The first lumber yard to be started was put in 
by Mellville, Plato & Co. ; and the first drugs 
were sold by T. R. Warren, who came from 
Leavenworth county, and before the close of 
the year had put up a small building on the 
northwest corner of Washington and Central 
avenues, and had placed therein a stock of 
drugs. The houses from Dayton had only- 
just arrived when those from Ladore, located 
about the same distance north as Dayton was 
south, began to make their appearance. It was 
said that from 50 to 75 houses were moved 
from Ladore during the winter. 


At the time of the location of the town, 
Henry F. Baker was living in a log house 
where the roundhouse now stands; and the 
town was scarcely located until John Austin, 
moved his dwelling-house down from Ladore: 



M'.( ONI) ( (llNTY .lAIL; EUKCIEI. l^T'.l. Cul I!T HOUSE; Eki 



and placed it on the northeast corner of Cen- 
tral and Crawford avenues. Both of them at 
once commenced keeping boarders. Mrs. 
Catharine Hurton soon after erected a re- 
spectable-looking building, which she opened 
up' as a boarding-house. W. P. Squires was 
on the ground about the same time; Finns 
Smith had a two-story 24 by 40 feet building 
at Ladore, which he tore down and brought 
to Parsons, and erected it on the northwest 
corner of Central and Johnson avenues. The 
proprietors of all of these houses, as well as 
several parties who only had tents, were fur- 
nishing board in November, 1870. It was not 
long until the Parsons House was opened up 
by Knapp, Noyes & Chamberlain. On March 
8, 1 87 1, E. B. Stevens and U. L. C. Beard 
commenced the erection of the Belmont House; 
the same month the Lockwood was com- 
menced, and finished so as to^ be opened on the 
8th of May. It was not until June i, 1872, that 
J. C. Karr commenced the construction of the 
St. James, on the northwest corner of Central 
and Forest avenues. This was a three-story 
brick — one of the finest buildings in the city. 
Of the numerous other houses which followed 
these I will not attempt to speak, only to men- 
tion that about 1880 the Abbott House became 
the principal hotel in the city, and thus re- 
mained until the ]\Iatthewson House was erect- 
ed, in 1886. 


The saloon-keeper was not long be'Iiind anv- 
one else who proposed to start business in the 
new town. John Austin, Wm. Dana, Z. T. 
Swigert, Chas. Hazard, and probably others 
whose names I have not learned, were all on 
the ground engaged in the sale of liquor in 
November, 1870. Mr. Hazard moved a two- 
story building from Ladore and located it on 

the north side of Johnson avenue ne.xt to 
Smith's hotel, which stood on the corner. 
This was the first building moved from La- 
dore. , 


Conrad Hinkle and wife Lena were the 
first to furnish meat to the new comers. For 
a time they brought it in a w'agon, but soon 
had a general meat shop opened. Dr. C. B. 
Kennedy removed a large livery stable from 
Ladore and located it on what became block 
no, where the Catholic church was later con- 
structed. J. Moore had the first furniture- 
store ; Fred Walker opened the first black- 
smith shop; and Walker & Thomas were the 
first real-estate agents. B. Sandercook was the 
first shoemaker; W. G. Douglas was the first 
tailor ; E. P. Flummer opened the first bakery ; 
A. J. Peabody was the first harness-maker. 
Most of these houses were in operation be- 
fore the, close of 1870, and all of them when 
the sale of lots commenced, in ]\Iarch, 1871. 


A. L. Hutchison and T. R. Warren were 
the contestants for the honor of being the first 
physician in the town ; and of attorney, J. G. 
Parkhurst, T. V. Thornton and E. E. Hast- 
ings could hardly tell who was there first — • 
but perhaps the race was won by 'Mr. Park- 


The first religious services of a public na- 
ture upon what became the town-site were held 
in Abraham Gary's log house on the north- 
west quarter of section 18, in North town- 
ship, in the summer of 1870, conducted by A. 



W. King, of Osage township. M'r. King 
preached here frequently during the summer 
and fall. John Leonard, who Hved on the 
southeast quarter of 19, was a Christian 
preacher, and sometimes preached in Mr. 
Cary's house after King had commenced hold- 
ing services. The first sermon preached in the 
town proper was over Mr. Hazard's saloon, on 
December 15, 1870, by A. W. King. Rev. 
H. H. Cambern was the next preacher on the 
ground. No religious exercises of any kind 
were held regularly during Uhe w^inter of 
1870 and 1871. There was no place provided 
for holding such services, and whenever they 
were held it was in some business room tem- 
porarily fixed up for the purpose — probably 
in a saloon almost as frequently as in any 
other room. Of the organization and build- 
ing of the various churches, I speak in an- 
other part of the work. 


On February 22, 1871, on the petition of 
Simon Saddler and others, the probate judge 
made an order incorporating the town of Par- 
sons, and appointed Abraham Cary, E. K. 
Currant, J. G. Parkhurst, John I. Sipple and 
John W. Rhodus as trustees. Thomas V. 
Thornton was the first clerk' appointed by the 
trustees; H. L. Partridge was justice of the 
peace in Walton township at the time of the 
settlement of Parsons, and became the first 
justice of the peace in Parsons. From No- 
vember 8, 1870, to March 8, 1871, he tried 
seven criminal and 26 civil cases. He also 
married the first couple in town, they being 
Z. T. Swigert and Josephine E. Parker. 

The town was organized as a city of the 
third class, and on April 17, 1871, the first 
city election was held, at which the following 

officers were elected: Mayor, Willard Davis; 
pohce judge, H. L. Partridge; C9uncilmen, 
Abraham Cary, William Dana, Charles Wat- 
son, S. B. Plato, and John W. Rhodus. The 
first meeting of the mayor and council was 
held April 28, 1871. On organizing, G. C. 
West was appointed city clerk. The city hav- 
ing attained a population of over 2,000 in- 
habitants, the evidence of which was furnished 
by a census taken by order of the city council, 
the Governor issued his proclamation, dated 
Februai-y 25, 1873, declaring Parsons a. city of 
the second class. 

Since the organization of the city it has 
had the following mayors and clerks : Mayors- 
April 17 to November 22, 1871, Willard 
Davis; November 22, 1871, to April, 1874, 
E. B. Stevens; April, 1874, to April, 1875, 
Ang^ell Matthewson; April, 1875, to April, 
1877, G. W. Gabriel; April, 1877, to April, 
1879, P. Y. Thomas; April, 1879, to April, 
1881, J." W. Thompson; April 1881, to April, 
1885, G. W. Gabriel; April, 1885, to April, 
1887, A. O. Brown; April, 1887, to April, 1889, 
G. W. Gabriel; April, 1889, to April, 1891, 
A. F. Neely; April, 1891, to April, 1895, J. 
M. Gregory; April, 1895, to April, 1897, E. 
I B. Stevens; April, 1897, to April, 1899, C. 
K. Leinbach; April, 1899, to April, 1901, C. 
Rockhold. Clerks — April to November 22, 
1871, G. C. West; November 22, 1871, to 
April, 1872, H. L. Partridge; April, 1872, to 
April, 1873, Edgar E. Hastings; April, 1873, 
to April. 1875, G. W. Hawk; April, 1875, to 
April, 1876, A. M. Fellows; April, 1876, to 
March, 1877, Frank L. Gage; March, 1877, 
to Anril, 1878, E. S. Stevens; April, 1878, to 
April 1882, A. A. Osgood; April, 1882, to 
April, 1883, R. T. Halloway; April, 1883, to 
October, 1884, Ira F. Adams; October. 1884, 
to May, 1885, Will W. Frye; May, 1885, to 


April, 1887, N. F. Mills; April, 1887, to April 
1889, Mrs. Mary S. Outland ; April, 1889, to 
April, 1 89 1, R. D. Talbot; April, 1891, to 
April, 1895, A. H. Tyler; April, 1895, to 
April, 1897, Maurice Davis; April, 1897, to 
January 8, 1901, James T. Weaver; January 
8, 1901, Maurice Davis was appointed to fill 
the vacancv. 


On Xovember 2. 1871, a meeting was held 
which decided upon organizing- a literary so- 
ciety and library association. On the 8th of 
the same month the organization was completed 
by electing W. H. Maxwell president and A. 
B. Truman secretary. During the winter liter- 
ary exercises were maintained, participated in 
by the leading men of the town. On Decem- 
ber 29th the library received its first donation 
of books, amounting to 22 volumes, and dur- 
ing the next few weeks several other dona- 
tions were made of a like character. On Oc- 
tober 26, 1872, the association held its first an- 
nual meeting, and re-elected \V. K. Maxwell 
president, and elected E. B. Stevens vice-presi- 
dent, and James Wells, Jr., secretary. This 
seems to 'have ended the efforts at that time for 
the establishment and maintenance of a library. 

In the summer of 1879 a new lyceum was 
organized, and Rev. P. Isl. Griffin elected pres- 
ident. Literary exercises were conducted by 
it for some months. 


In 1877 Mrs. Ella B. \Mlson, Mrs. Kate 
Grimes and Mrs. Polly L. Cory secured the 
formation of a library association. In this as- 
sociation they remained, as I am informed, 
the controlling spirits, ^Irs. ^^'ilson taking the 

principal part in its management. She trav- 
eled over a large part of the United States, 
soliciting funds for the erection of a building, 
as well as books and works of art for the foun- 
dation of a library. Large sums of money were 
contributed, and very fine donations of books, 
statuary and other articles of interest and value 
were gathered. Practically it was a gift of the 
country generally to Parsons at the earnest 
solicitation of one woman. With the funds 
thus contributed as a basis of operation, a site 
was secured on the southeast corner of Forest 
aA'enue and Nineteenth street, on lots 14, 15 
and 16, in block 53, and the erection thereon 
of the building started. A loan of $10,000 
was procured, and the lots and building mort- 
gaged to secure the payment of the same. A 
very fine three-story building was erected and 
finished, which, on December 25, 1883, was 
formally opened by appropriate exercises, 
among which was an address by Governor 

In the second story of this building were 
placed the books and works of art which had 
been contributed, and it was believed the hard- 
est part of the work was then accomplished of 
securing a large, prosperous and permanent 
library. But times changed; contributions of 
money did not come in; there was no means 
provided for paying the indebtedness contract- 
ed in the erection of the building; the mort- 
gage was foreclosed, the property sold, and the 
seeming bright prospect for a great library 
vanished from sight. 


On January 24, 1872, the attorneys in town 
established a bar association, and for some 
weeks thereafter had public lectures from its 
members on different phases of law. 




Was organized in the Sun office, March 8, 
1872. Dr. T. R. \\'arren was the first presi- 


On November 17. 1880. a number of ladies 
met at the !iome of Mrs. T. P. Atchison and 
organized a society under the name given 
above. The following officers were elected: 
Mrs. David Kelso, president; Mrs. M. F. 
Stevens, secretary; ]\Irs. W. H. Wagoner, 
treasurer. The society has maintained a con- 
tinuous existence, and has done a great amount 
of literary work. 


This society was organized December 8, 
1 88 1. Miss Phrone Emery was its first presi- 
dent, and Mrs. Jennie Davis, secretary. It 
was at first called the Young Ladies' Reading 
Society, but in September, 1885, was named 
the Macaulay Club. Since then it has been an 
active factor in the literarv work of Parsons. 


The existence of this circle dates from the 
spring of 1883, when five ladies began reading 
together without any formal organization. On 
October 24th of that year a number of new 
inembers were admitted to the circle, a formal 
organization was had, and the following offi- 
cers elected: Mrs. Wells H. Utley. president; 
Mrs. B. B. Brown, vice-president ; and Miss 
Emma June, secretary and treasurer. The 
active membershi]i is limited to 16. Its ob- 
ject is purely literary. 

Banking House of Angell Matthew- 
son. — On June 6, 1871, S. P. Crawford and 
Angell Matthewson, of Parsons, and W. P. 
Bishop, of Oswego, formed a partnership, and 
on June iqth opened the bank of Crawford, 
Matthewson & Co. The first depositor was 
Oliver Duck; the first draft was issued to Cur- 
rant, Cook & Allen. On July 31st Mr. Mat- 
thewson purchased the interest of the other 
two partners, and the business continued un- 
der the name of tlie Banking House of Angell 

First National Bank. — On April 8, 
1872, Matthewson's Bank v,-as succeeded by 
the First National Bank, of which A. D. 
Jaynes, of Sedalia, Mo., w-as president, and 
Angell Matthewson, cashier. This bank had a 
paid-up capital of $50,000, and started with 
over $37,000 in deposits turned over to it by 
Matthewson's bank. On January 19, 1875, 
R. S. Stevens succeeded Mr. Jaynes as presi- 
dent. During January and February, 1877, 
while jNIr. Matthewson was in the Senate, 
George W. Hawk, the teller, performed the 
duties of cashier. January i, 1879, Lee Clark 
succeeded Mr. Matthewson as cashier, and held 
the position until October, 1890, when he be- 
came president, F. C. Stevens having been 
president immediately preceding him. E. B. 
Stevens became cashier on July i, 1890, and 
still retains the position. 

The Parsons Savings Bank was or- 
ganized in May, 1874, with Augustus \\'ilson 
president, ajid Joshua Hill, cashier; having a 
paid-up capital of $50,000. The first draft was 
issued to A. W. Gifford. On July i, 1878, 
this bank was reorganized as 

The Parsons Commercial Bank, of 



which Joshua Hill was president and George 
W. Hawk cashier. The latter has continued to 
fill the position of cashier ever since. For sev- 
eral years past E. H. Edwards has been presi- 
dent of the bank. It has long been one of the 
established institutions of the city. 

City Bank of Angell M.a.tthewson & 
Co. — This bank was organized May i, 1879, 
with a capital of $20,000 ; Angell Matthewson 
and Alerrit Noyes being the owners. On Oc- 
tober I. 1880, F. H. Snyder was admitted to 
the partnership and made cashier. Mr. Noyes 
died in 1883, and in Xovemlier, 1884, \Vm. 
H. Taylor was admitted to the partnership and 
the capital stock made $60,000, which was in- 
creased to $100,000 on February i, 1888. L. 
E. Weeks was appointed cashier September i, 
1891. The firm failed in 1893, and the bank 
went out of existence. 

The State Bank of Parsons was or- 
ganized in 1900 with a capital stock of $25,- 
000. O. H. Stewart is president and F. H. 
Foster is cashier. 

building and loan association. 

On July 14, 1879, the Parsons Building 
and Loan Association was organized, of which 
C. A. King was president, and J. G. Gray, 

investment companies. 

There are several parties engaged in loan- 
ing money, among them being Angell 'Sla.t- 
thewson and George H. Ratcliff. 


During the early part of 1884 much com- 
plaint had been made about the condition in 
which the private and public jM-emises, as well 

as many of the private alleys and yards, were 
kept, and the Eclipse was especially vigilant in 
looking after and giving publicity to these 
grievances. In July of that year the mayor 
and council appointed J. B. Lamb health offi- 
cer. It was thought by some that this ap- 
pointment was made rather as a burlesque in 
retaliation for the frequent appeals to the 
authorities to do a general cleaning up; but 
whatever was the spirit that prompted the 
move, it turned out to be a ver}' wise one. 
The Doctor went at the work vigorously, and 
did good work in securing the cleaning up of 
the filth which had been allowed to accumulate, 
and probably saved the place a great amount 
of sickness. The work thus commenced 
showed the advisabilitv of ha\-ing some per- 
manent arrangement for removal of filth and 
the preservation of the public health. 


In 1885 steps were taken to put in a sys- 
tem of sewerage, and this was pushed forward 
until the business part of the city was well sup- 
plied with the means for the removal of all 
filth and the carrying away of the waste wa- 
ter. Later the system was made general for the 
city, so that now most of the inhabitants are 
favored with this C(.in\-enience. 


During the summer of 1882 the matter of 
supplying the city with water was discussed, 
and a company was formed for the purpose 
of carrying out the contemplated project. On 
September 15th, by an almost unanimous vote 
of the electors, the city gave its assent and 
promised aid. During the following year the 
works were put in under the general direction 

1 64 


of C. W. Hill, but it was not until July, 1884, 
that they -were completed and accepted by the 
city. Reservoirs were made upon the banks 
of the Labette some distance above the city, 
from which stream the water was procured. 
The city paid $3,000 per year for 50 hydrants. 
Soon after the completion of the works, C. 
H. Kimball and E. H. Edwards became the 
principal owners of the stock of the company 
and had the g-eneral management of its busi- 
ness. The operation of the works under the 
original construction never gave general satis- 
faction, and they were believed to be far in- 
adequate to meet the city's needs. Early in 
1892 steps were taken to secure a better supply 
by obtaining water from the Neosho instead 
of from the Labette. IMains were laid from the 
Neosho to the old reservoirs on the Labette and 
into the city. A new stand-pipe, one of 
the largest in the State, was erected in the city, 
and under the present arrangements the water 
system is very complete. 

On December 11. 1882, the city council 
passed an ordinance giving an e.Kclusive fran- 
chise for twenty-one years to Angell Matthew- 
son to construct and operate gas works. The 
franchise was assigned to the Parsons Light 
& Heat Company, and in 1883 the works were 
completed, since which time those who de- 
sired it ha\-e been supplied with gas. 


Since 1898 the city has been supplied with 
natural gas piped from Neodesha, which gas 
is largely used for heating and lighting. 


On May 2^, 1887, an ordinance was passed 
authorizing J. J- Everningham to erect electric 

works in the city of Parsons, and within a 
month thereafter this franchise was transferred 
to the Parsons Light & Heat Company, which 
was operating the gas plant. A system of arc 
lights was at once put in, and put in operation 
on September 25th. In the summer of 1892 
the incandescent system of lights was added, 
and the capacity of the plant much enlarged. 


In 1882 a system of telephones was put in 
providing for communication in the various 
parts of the city, and also a line was built con- 
necting the city with Oswego ; and on July 20th 
of that year Mayors Gabriel and Condon ex- 
changed congratulations. The line between 
Parsons and Oswego was not maintained for 
any great length of time, nor was the city sys- 
tem very largely used after a few months of 
trial. In 1896 the telephone communication 
with other towns was again inaugurated, since 
which time the system has become quite pop- 


One of the wisest investments made by the 
city in the way of improvement was that of 
building sidewalks and macadamizing its 
streets. The work of macadamizing com- 
menced in 1878, and was gradually pushed 
forward for the next two or three years, until 
the streets in the principal business part of 
town were all macadamized, and good side- 
walks have been laid in nearly all of the streets 
that have any large amount of travel. During 
the past few years the macadamizing of the 
streets has been very greatly extended, as well 
as the improvement and construction of new 


The first building to be erected of material 



other than wood was put up early in 1871, on 
block 25, on the north side of Johnson avenue, 
by Ed. Foley. It was constructed out of cut 
sandstone, and made a very creditable appear- 
ance. The first brick buildings in town were 
erected in 1872. They were the passenger 
depot, the First National Bank building, the 
St. James Hotel on the corner north from the 
First National Bank, and t'he second ward 
school-house. The same year two or three 
brick business houses were put up — one Iiy \\'. 
C. Calkins, on lots 13 and 14, block 33, and 
one by A. Royer, on lot i, block 34. During 
this year T. C. Cory tore down his brick resi- 
dence at Ladore and rebuilt it on the south- 
east quarter of section 24. This was the first 
brick residence in town. 


Was incorporated January 15, 1896. A. A. 
Osgood served as president the first two years, 
and Dr. C. Rockhold since then. The State has 
made an annual appropriation of $700 for sev- 
eral years past to help support this institution. 
The building formerly used for the Hobson In- 
stitute was purchased for and is now occupied 
by the Home. 


In 1899. under provisions of an act of the 
Legislature, a commission located a new in- 
sane asylum at Parsons. Litigation ensued 
that delayed the commencement of the work, 
but under the new appropriation made by the 
Legislature in 1901 work on the institution will 
soon be begun. 

On October 7, 1871, the Sun published an 

article advising the people to turn out the first 
still day and burn around the town to protect 
it from fires. I do not know whether or not 
this advice was heeded, but it seems that no 
damage resulted from fire from that cpiarter. 
During the history of the city there have 
been several quite extensive fires, but none 
that were at all destructive; in fact, most of 
them, in the business part of the city, while 
they may have damaged individuals, were a 
public benefit so far as the city was concerned, 
for it secured in the place of the buildings de- 
stroyed, others of a verv much better cjuality. 
One of the first, if not the first fire in tijwn to 
do any large amount of damage, was the burn- 
ing of John Rhodus' boarding-house. On 
July 29, 1875, a fire occurred on Fourth av- 
enue which destroyed nine business houses. 
The loss by this fire was estimated to be from 
$75,000 to $100,000. On December 26, 1875, 
the Lockwood House was burned ; and on 
May 23, 1883, the City Hotel, which was one 
of the original hotels. Among the losses that 
have occurred from fire have been several of 
the mills and factories; one of the largest of 
which was on August i, 1892, being the de- 
struction of the National IMills. A number 
of other quite extensive fires have taken place 
at various times, the particulars of which I 
have not learned. 


Of all the enterprises which have contrib- 
uted to the prosperity of Parsons, none have 
approached that of the railroad influence, and 
especially the machine shops thereof. Work 
on the machine shops commenced in October, 
1871, and by the close of 1872 they were com- 
pleted and ready for operation. The round- 
house was not completed until May, 1873. 




An account of the first school in the coun- 
ty, wliile not a public school, is still necessary 
for a history of our educational growth. Of 
this school I will let one of its founders. Dr. 
George Lisle, give the account, which is as 
follows : 

"On or about the naiddle of May, 1858, 
James Childers, George \\'alker, William 
Blythe, Larkin McGhee, Benjamin Todd, Mil- 
lard Rogers, John McMurtrie, James Hether- 
ington and myself got together and concluded 
to build a school-house that would be large 
enough to have preaching in as often as we 
could get the preacher. A committee was ap- 
pointed to select a site and fix upon size of 
house and call the people together to approve 
the same. The next Saturday was appointed, 
and everybody turned out and agreed to build 
it at a small spring in a branch one and one-half 
miles south of wliere Chetopa now stands. 
The people agreed to meet and go to work 
on Monday morning, which they did with such 
success that by Saturday night they liad a 
house 22 by 24 feet square, floored with 
puncheons, seated and desked with the same, 
covered and lined with split and shaved clap- 
boards : door and window fastenings were of 
boards cut with a whip-saw : and on Sunday it 

was dedicated in order. On ^londay Joseph 
C. Henry commenced a school by the month, 
wliich l:e kept up almost one year; then Jeff. 
Jackson taught one term of three months; 
Pleasant McGhee taught one term ; and Helen 
Hardin was teaching when the war broke out 
and ended our school, but not its efifects." 

The history of the public schools of the 
county commences with the election of Dr. 
John F. Xewlon as county superintendent of 
public instruction, at the first election, held on 
April 22d, 1867. How soon after his election 
he commenced work I have no means of know- 
ing, but a number of school districts must have 
been formed early in May of that year, for as 
early as June ist we find the residents of one 
of the districts petitioning for a change of 
boundary. On account of the imperfection of 
our records as originally made, and of the en- 
tire loss of some of them, I am unable to speak 
with absolute definiteness in reference to the 
organization and history of many of the dis- 
tricts. Just how many districts were organized 
during Dr. Xewlon's term of ofifice I cannot 
say positively, and yet I may say with a rea- 
sonable degree of certainty that 20 is the num- 
ber. From the appearance of the records the 
number cannot have exceeded 21 or 22, I think, 
and there is nothing showing clearly, nor 
hartllv intimating anvthing bevond 20. The 



order for the organization of District No. 20 
appears in Dr. Newlon's own writing. Tiiis 
cannot be said of any subsequent numlaer so 
far as the records now show. It is quite likely- 
some of these first 20 districts 'had scarcely any 
existence aside from on paper. Most of them, 
however, were at once organized and steps 
taken for the establishment of schools. The 
county having just lieen organized, there was 
of course no ];u]:)lic money, nor any public 
schools before the fall of 1867, and I can learn 
of but two pri\ate schools having been taught 
that year, viz., one in Oswego District, No. i, 
and one in District No. 2. However, levies 
for school purposes were made that summer 
and taxes collected the following fall and win- 
ter, and from this time on the public schools 
were regularly held for a greater or less length 
of time in most of the districts. In the Jack- 
sonville district, No. 11, only a part of which 
was in this county, a public school was taught 
in the summer of 1867: that school was not in 
this county, although as a joint district, re- 
port of the school was made to our county su- 
perintendent, as well as to the superintendent of 
Neosho county. 


All of Oswego township l}'ing west and 
south of the Neosho river, excepting the two 
southern tiers of sections, was, by the first or- 
der made by Supt. Newlon, formed into School 
District No. i. In June, 1867, ;Mrs. Augusta 
Herbaugh commenced teaching the first school 
in the district. It was of course a private 
school, no public funds having yet been raised 
with which to employ a teacher. She taught 
in a small log building with dirt f^oor, situated 
near the northeast corner of section 21. The 
first officers elected were: T. J. Flouronoy, 

director ; Henry Jacobs, clerk ; and J. O. 
Cowell, treasurer. The first report of the dis- 
trict is dated August 14, 1867, and signed by 
H. Jacobs, clerk, and shows t,o male and 39 
female children in the district, 17 males and 
15 females having attended the private school 
taught by Mrs. Augusta Herbaugh at $2.50 
per scholar, which school commenced on the 
24th of June. At tliat time there was stand- 
ing on lot I, block 33, now occupied by Mr. 
Symmes' drug store, a small frame building, 
in which most of the meetings, both religious 
and secular, were held. The board secured the 
use of this building for school purposes, and 
by a "bee" slabs were furnished with legs, and 
thus seats were provided ; and in this room 
thus furnished, about the first of November, 
1867, R. J. Elliott commenced teaching the 
•first public school in the district, and one of 
the first, if not the very first, in the county. 
Public schools were taught that winter in sev- 
eral districts, but there are no records showing 
which was commenced first. Mr. Elliott's 
school continued for three months. There was 
no further school taught until the next fall. 
The second report is dated September 14, 1868, 
signed by J. F. Waskey, clerk, and shows a 
total enumeration of 176 children in the dis- 
trict, yy of whom had attended a three-months 
school, taught by R. J. Elliott at a salary of 
$50 per month, the average attendance being 
41. On March 26, 1868, the following were 
elected: E. Hammer, director; I. F. Waskey, 
clerk; A. L. Austin, treasurer. On February 
9, 1869, Mr. Waskey resigned, and W. S. New- 
lon was appointed clerk in his place. During 
the summer of 1868 a subscription was taken 
up among the business men of the place, and 
a frame building was erected on the southeast 
corner of block 39, designed for public meet- 
ings as well as for school and church purposes. 


The only seats with which this building was 
furnished were rough slabs. In this building, 
in December, 1868, Rev. Cornelius V. Mon- 
fort and J\Iiss Sallie Elliott commenced a term 
of school. Mr. Monfort was not especially 
adapted to public-school teaching, and at the 
expiration of two or three months found it 
advisable to give up his employment, and R. 
J. Elliott was again placed in charge of the 
school in connection with his sister Sallie. 
On March 10, i86q, on a vote of the district 
to issue $5,000 in bonds to build a new school- 
house, there were 84 votes for and 8 against 
the proposition. The board elected on Mardi 
25, 1869, consisted of W. S. Newlon, director; 
George C. Sarvis, clerk; and R. W. Wright, 
treasurer. These officers had charge of the 
construction of the new schol-house. Dr. 
\Vright took the bonds to Leavenworth, where 
he negotiated them and secured funds for 
paying for the building as it was erected. 
The town company donated the west half of 
block 16, on which, during the summer of 
1869, a two-story stone building was erected, 
containing four good school-rooms capable of 
seating 50 pupils each. The building was 
furnished throughout with patent seats and 
desks. In this building, late in the fall of 
1869, a school was opened with George C. 
Sarvis, principal; Miss Louisa M. Allen, 
teacher of the intermediate; and Miss Sallie 
Elliott, teacher of the primary department. On 
September 14, 1869. George C. Sarvis. 
clerk, reported a total enrollment of 350, of 
whom 123 had been in school the preceding 
year, the average attendance being 98. In 
March, 1870, Henry Tibbits was elected di- 
rector, J. F. Waskey, clerk, and R. W. Wright, 
treasurer. Mr. Waskey failed to qualify and 
George C. Sarvis was appointed to fill the va- 
cancy. With the opening of the school year 

in the fall of 1870, David Donovan was em- 
ployed as principal, in which position he was 
continued for three years. In 1871 the board 
consisted of W. S. Newlon, director; A. B. 
Close, clerk; C. M. Condon, treasurer. In the 
spring of 1872 Nelson Case succeeded Mr. 
Close as clerk ; Dr. Newlon remained as di- 
rector and Mr. Condon as treasurer, and the 
board as thus composed remained in office un- 
til the organization of the board of education 
in 1873. In April, 1872, at the city election the 
following persons were chosen members of the 
board of education : First \\'ard, Henry Tib- 
bits, Joseph Nelson ; Second Ward, Mrs. ]\Iary 
B. Franklin, J. \V. Minturn ; Third Ward, 
Mrs. Mary E. Case and Alexander Mackie. 
Some of these parties not desiring to serve, 
it was concluded not to organize the board of 
education, and the school continued under the 
charge of the district board as formerly elect- 
ed. At the April election in 1873 a board of 
education was elected, consisting of Joseph 
Nelson and H. P. Nelson from the First ^^'ard, 
G. C. Sarvis and Dr. S. P. Hurbut from the 
Second Ward, and H. \\'. Barnes and R. J. 
Elliott from the Third \\'ard. The board or- 
ganized by electing Mr. Nelson president and 
Mr. Sarvis clerk; Nelson Case was elected su- 
perintendent of schools. Until the fall of 1883 
the plan of the board was to have the teacher 
of the high school the principal of the school, 
and to employ a superintendent who was to 
have the general direction of school affairs, 
but who was not on the teaching force. Un- 
der this plan the superintendents were Nelson 
Case, Mary A. Higby, W. S. Newlon, W. A. 
Starr, F. H. Atchison, D. H. Mays, and M. 
Chidester. During this time the principals of 
the school were: April 1873, David Dono- 
van, who resigned at the end of the month, 
and Mrs. E. Williams was put in charge until 



the close of the school; 1873-76, A. C. Baker, 
three j-ears; 1876-78, J. B. Hoover, two years; 
1878-79. i\Irs. J. R. Boulter, one year; 1879- 
81, A. C. Baker, two years; 1881-83. O. R. 
Bellamy, two years. Commencing with the 
fall of 1883 the superintendent of schools has 
been one of the teachers ; sometimes he has also 
been principal of the high school, and some- 
times there has been a separate principal of the 
•high school. Under this arrangement the su- 
perintendents have been : 1883-86, M. Chides- 
ter, three years; 1886-90, J. W. Weltner, four 
years; 1890-91, Evelyn B. Baldwin, one year; 
1891-94, Henry C. Long, three years; 1894-96, 
Warren JNI. Edmundson, two years; 1896- 
1900, Charles H. Williams, four years; 1900, 
Herbert W. Todd. Presidents of the board: 
1873, Joseph Nelson; 1874, H. W. Barnes; 
1875, Nelson Case; 1876-77, John A. Pigg; 
1878-79, R. W. Wright; 1880-83, Nelson 
Case; 1884-88, J. B. Montgomery; 1889-90, 
Nelson Case; 1891, J. B. Montgomery; 1892, 
David Jennings; 1893-94, Nelson Case; 1895, 

E. T. Read; 1896-97, John N. Utterson ; 1898- 
1900, Lee Williams. Clerks of the board: 
1873, George C. Sarvis; 1874, John W. Mont- 
fort; 1875, John W. :\Inntfort and R. J. Elli- 
ott; 1876, C. A. A\'ilkin; 1877. John S. Read 
and Charles H. \\'illhalf ; 1878, J. C. Boulter; 
1879, F. C. Helsel; 1880, N. Sanford and F. 
H. Atchinson; 1881-82, William Houck; 1883, 

F. H. Atchinson; 1884-85, John F. Hill; 1886- 
1892, A. T. Dickerman; 1893-94, John Elliott; 
1895-96, George Campbell; 1897-99, C. A. 
Wilkin; 1900, W. K. Orr. At the close of 
school in April. 1884. the first graduating class 
went out, consisting of Eunice Crane, Samuel 
Carpenter, D. S. Waskey, and Merrit C. Reed. 
The graduates now number 27 boys and 99 
girls, total 126; of this number, five were col- 

ored students. For some time prior to 1882 
the stone school-house was entirely insufficient 
to seat the pupils of the district, and rooms had 
to be secured in such places as they could be 
had. Of course very inferior accommodations 
could be provided in this way. During 1880 
and 1 88 1 the board submitted several propo- 
sitions to the electors for the issuance of bonds 
for a new school-house, which were voted 
down. In his annual report in 1881, and again 
in 1882, the president of the board urged the 
erection of a new house, and on June 6. 1882, 
a proposition to issue $12,000 in bonds was car- 
ried. With this the north half and the central 
part of the south half of block 4, in Cowell's 
addition, was secured for a site, on which the 
west school building was erected during the 
summer and fall, and in Januarv, 1883, was 
occupied for school purposes. In 1886 the old 
stone school-house was torn down and a new 
brick erected on the same site, at a ciist of 

June 16. 1 87 1, at the close of the county 
teachers' association the lad'es of Oswego 
formed an educational association, of which 
]\Irs. Mary E. Perkins was elected president 
and Mrs. Amy B. Howard, secretary. On 
June 15, 1872, they held their first annual 
meeting, and elected Mrs. M. E. Donovan 
president and Mrs. E. Will.'ams, secretary. At 
the annual election of 1873 Mrs. M. E. 
Donovan was re-elected president ; ]Mrs. E. 
Williams, secretary; Mrs. A. M. Taylor, 
treasurer. The association was maintained for 
several years, and did a great amount of good. 
Through their exertions the school-house 
grounds were fenced, the trees which now 
adorn the east school-house yard were planted 
under their superintendency, the city authori- 
ties were induced to assist in securing side- 



walks leading to tlie school-house, and in many 
ways their influence en the school was felt for 


Tlie original order for the formation of 
District No. 2 is now on file, and shows that 
it was .located in the •southeast corner of Os- 
wego township. The first report of the dis- 
trict is dated August 9, 1867, signed -by Will- 
iam F. Mason, clerk, showing 46 children in 
the district, 26 being in attendance on a private 
school taught by Mrs. Sarah Braught, wife of 
Cloyd G. Braught. Airs. Braught taught in 
their own cabin, situated on section 34, in Os- 
wego township. John W. Burgess, clerk, 
makes two reports, one dated September 14, 
1868, showing, 55 children in the district, 2;^ 
having attended a three-months" school taught 
bv W. Leonard at $25 per month ; the average 
daily attendance was 16. O. Whitney was 
clerk in 1869, and shows by report that Mary 
E. Biggs had taught a three-months' school the 
preceding season at $25 per month. 


The original order for the organization of 
District No. 3 is not among the public records; 
but on June i. 1S67, a petition of a number 
of tlie residents of that district living in Rich- 
land township, north of the Labette and west 
of the Neosho river, petitioned for a change 
of boundary so that it should include all of 
the township lying north of Labette creek, and 
west from the Neosho as far as and including 
a part of sections 17. 8 and 5, which petition 
Superintendent Newlon granted. The report 
of the district for 1867 has evidently been torn 
and mutilated, so that at present no informa- 
tion can be gathered therefrom. The first re- 

port we have is dated November 9, 1868, 
signed by M. J. Lee, clerk, showing 25 males 
and 20 female children in the district, and that 
a school had been taught by Cass Steel. Mr. 
Lee again reports as clerk, in 1869; the re- 
port shows a tliree-months' school having been 
taught by Miss Lizzie Kingsljury, with an 
average daily attendance of 22. at a salary of 
$25 per month. On June 12, 1869, a special 
meeting was held, at which 16 votes were cast, 
all in favor of issuing $350 in bonds with which 
to build a school-house. With this money the 
district purchased a frame store building which 
L. D. Bovee had put up for Mr. Smith at the 
old town of Labette, and moved it out to the 
Oswego and Chetopa read. This building has 
served the district as a school-house ever since. 


All of the original records we have in refer- 
ence to the formation of the early districts in 
the county are on slips of j^aper. There is no 
record whatever now on file of the formation 
of any district in the county numbered 4: but 
the original records describing District No. 
5 comi^letely fit the territory which has ever 
since been recognized as District No. 4, and 
the description of District No. 6 fits the terri- 
tory which was thereafter recognized as Dis- 
trict No. 5 ; and as there is little or no record 
of any business in District No. 6 prior to the 
establishment of such a district in 1872, it may 
be fairly inferred that the superintendent in 
writing out these orders made a mistake in 
numbering them, leaving out 4 entirely. I 
shall assume that the original order for the 
establishment No. 5 was intended for and was 
thereafter uniformly applied to District No. 
4. It embraced two miles in width on the 
east line of the county, extending from La- 



bette creek on the north to the State Hne on 
the south. We have no record showing who 
composed the first board of this district, but 
the first report is dated August 14, 1867, and is 
signed by Henry Shannon. The only thing 
the report shows is that there are in the dis- 
trict 20 males and 16 females of school age. 
\\'e ha\'e then this negative testimony that no 
school was taught in this district prior to that 
time. During 1868 the school board consisted 
of William Craft, director; Daniel J. Doolen, 
clerk; Z. A. Woodard, treasurer. The report 
dated August 29, 1868, shows the school pop- 
ulation to be 137, and that a three-months' 
school of 26 males and 29 females, and a total 
average daily attendance of 30, had been 
taught by Miss Ellen Craft at a salary of $25 
per month. During the winter of 1868-69 a 
school with two departments was taught ; one 
by Mrs. Abigail Horner, and the other by Miss 
Ellen Craft. Xo school building had yet been 
erected, but early in 1869 a contract was made 
for the erection of a school building. At the 
election on March 25, 1869, the following offi- 
cers were elected: J. L. Taft, director; John 
W. Horner, clerk; C. P. Spaulding, treasurer. 
On December 5, 1869, the schools were opened 
in Spaulding's Hall, in charge of Newton 
Bowles and his daug'hter. Miss Eva Bowles. 
On February 3, 1870, the new frame school- 
house having been completed, it was dedicated 
with appropriate ceremonies. On the 7th of 
the same month the schools were opened in this 
new building, which even then was found to 
be too small to accommodate the children who 
were ready to attend. At the election in the 
spring of 1870 N. S. Storrs was elected di- 
rector; J. W. Horner, clerk; and J. L. Taft, 
treasurer. During the summer Mr. Storrs re- 
signed and Jonas Clark was appointed in his 
place. J. J. ]\IcBride was appointed principal 

of the schools for the following year, but ii) 
January resigned, and for a time Miss M. L. 
Ela, who had been one of the assistant teach- 
ers, was put in charge, but in March she re- 
signed, and Mr. Griswold was elected principal. 
At the district election in 1871, Jonas Clark 
was elected director, C. H. McCreery, clerk, 
and J. L. Taft, treasurer. The city having been 
organized into a city of the second class about 
this time, on March 29, 1871, Mayor Fox as- 
sumed, with the assent of the council, to or- 
ganize the board of education, and appointed as 
members thereof the following: Jonas Clark, 
Dr. John Birch, C. F. Smith, and Rev. C. H. 
McCreery. On ^lay ist these parties met as 
the board of education and proceeded to or- 
ganize by electing Mr. Clark as president ; Mr. 
Birch, vice-president; Mr. McCreery, clerk; 
and ^Ir. Smith, treasurer; they then appointed 
J. M. Ca\'aness superintendent of schools. In 
September, 1871, the schools were opened un- 
der the superintendency of Edward Mason. 
On June 10, 1872, by a vote of 147 for to 54 
against, it was decided to issue $25,000 in 
bonds to build a new school-house. In due 
course of time preparations for building were 
made. The board pushed forward the work 
as rapidly as possible. The building was com- 
pleted and dedicated on July 4, 1873, and was 
at that time the finest school-house in the coun- 
ty. A separate building was then erected for 
colored children. The first graduating class 
consisted of M. Nellie McGinley, Allie Horner, 
Jessie Sellman, and Harry W\ Sterling. This 
class went out in 1883. There have been 44 
boys and 97 girls, total, 141, graduated from 
the school. The largest enrollment in its 'his- 
tory was in 1898, when it readied 753. The 
high school course is on a grade with that of 
others, which prepare for college. J. M. Cav- 
aness, C. H. McCreery, J. Paulsen and J. D. 



Graham at various times have acted as dty su- 
perintendent. In recent years the principals of 
the high school have also been superintendents. 
The principals, term commencing in the fall 
of the year named, have been : 1871, Edward 
M. Mason; 1872, L. J. \'anLandingham; 
1873. J. W. Horner; 1874, P. Fales; 1875, 
j. A. R. Smith; 1876, Buel T. Davis; 1877-78, 
Hobert Hay; 1879, L. J. VanLandingham; 

1880, O. V. Hayes; 1881-84, J. W. \\'eltner; 

1885, J. W. ^\'eltner and W. W. Lindsey; 

1886, Buel T. Davis; 1887-88. S. D. Crane; 
1889-91. E. A. Herod; 1892-94, Clay D. 
Herod; 1894-96, G. M. Brown; 1896-97, A. 
J. Lovett; 1897—. M. Xellie McGinley. Pres- 
idents: 1871, Jonas Clark; 1872, Dr. John 
Burch: 1873, J. M. Bannan; 1874, L. J. Van- 
Landingham; 1875, F. A. Hunter; 1876, Will- 
iam Alexander: 1877, L. J. VanLandingham; 
1878, C. H. Guntler: 1879-82. Lewis Williams; 
J 883-85. J. C. Witt; 1886-87, G. D. Boon; 
1888, G. W. McEwen; 1889, G. D. Boon; 
1890, B. F. Danforth; 1891, J. C. Witt; 1892- 
97, Mrs. Clara N. Bush; 1898-99, J. B. An- 
derson; 1900 — , A. P. Free. Clerks, 1871, 
C. H. McCreery; 1872, J. J\I. Bannan; 1873, 
C. H. Ludlow; 1874, C. Humble; 1875, L. J. 
VanLandingham; 1876-77, C. Humble; 1878, 
C. M. Williams; 1879-80, N. S. Van Ausdale; 

1881, A. G. Drake and L. M. Bedell; 1882-89, 
A. G. Drake; 1890-97, G. W. ^IcEwen: 1898. 
K. A. Lough; 1899-1900, A. J. Doran. 


.\s I said in describing District Xo. 4, I 
must assume that the superintendent in prepar- 
ing the records which have come down to us 
made a mistake in numbering these districts, 
as the descriptiim of what he has numliered 5 
applies to the district which thereafter 

designated 4, and the district he has numbered 
6 applies to that which was thereafter acted 
upon as 5. The original order for the forma- 
tion of District Xo. 5, as numbered on said 
order, made it to embrace the east part of Rich- 
land township, including the town of Chetopa ; 
but all subsecjuent proceedings make it evi- 
dent that that order was intended to be for 
District No. 4, or at least that it was there- 
after acted upon as No. 4. As I have before 
assumed that the order by the superintendent 
numbered 5, was intended for 4, so I must 
assume that for the formation of District 
Xo. 6 was intended to be, as it was there- 
after regularly recognized, District Xo. 5. 
It commenced at the northwest corner of 
section i, in Hackberry township, and extend- 
ed south to the State line; thence east three 
miles ; thence north to the Labette river ; thence 
up said stream to the place of beginning. This 
seems to Iea\-e the middle tier of sections run- 
ning north and south in Richland township out 
of either school district. Perhaps the super- 
intendent's intention was to put District Xo. 
6 in Hackberry township, and after running 
south to the State line, instead of running east, 
he should have made his order read, "thence 
running west." Or it may be that at that time, 
in some way, Districts Xos. 4, 5 and 6 were 
understood to embrace all of Richland town- 
ship south of Labette creek, notwithstanding 
the imperfect description in the orders forming 
them. But that the west part of Richland 
township was organized District X"o. 5, rather 
than District No. 6, is made clear by a petition 
which was presented sometime during Mr. 
Xewlon's administration, although the date is 
not given, wherein Moses Powers, John Ken- 
ney, \\'illiam Shay, John X. \\'atson, S. R. 
Southwick and a number of others represented 
themselves as ]5ein.o- residents of District Xo. 5, 



and asked that the district might be made to 
commence at the southwest corner of said 
township, which would be, as then constituted, 
the southwest corner of section 31, and to ex- 
tend three miles east and three miles north. 
William Shay was the first director, S. R. 
Southwick the first clerk, and John Kinney 
the first treasurer of this district. The first re- 
port is dated September 15, 1867, and shows 
39 children of school age in the district. No 
public school was taught in the district until 
the fall of 1868. The clerk's report, dated 
September 12, 1868, shows 51 children of 
school age, and that Matilda Ouinby had 
taught a three-months' subscription school, 
with an attendance of 11 males and 13 females. 
The next winter S. R. Southwick taught a 
three-months' school at $35 per month, and in 
the spring Miss Frankie Hull taught a three- 
months' school at $25 per month. The first 
school was taught in David Wagoner's vacant 
house on the southwest quarter of section 18. 
The first school meeting was held on the open 
prairie of John N. Watson's claim, on the 
northwest quarter of section 29. It was there 
agreed that each person should bring in a few 
logs, and that they would put up a log school- 
house. This project was not carried out, and 
in the spring of 1869 they put up a frame 
house. D. U. Watson is credited with having 
been present at every school meeting that has 
ever been held in the district. 


What I have said in speaking of Districts 
Nos. 4 and 5 may be referred to at this place 
for a fuller statement in reference to this dis- 
trict. Aside from the order granting District 
No. 6, which I have heretofore assumed to be 
intended for a description of District No. 5, I 

find only these matters of record which would 
indicate that at any time there was any district 
designated as No. 6 prior to 1872. There is 
a report dated August 15, 1867, signed by J. 
B. Huntly, clerk, which he represents to be a 
report for District No. 4, but at the bottom, 
evidently in the handwriting of the superin- 
tendent, it is marked District No. 6, and is 
said to be in Oswego township; and in May, 

1 87 1, by the notices of election returns, it seems 
that Stanley Foland was director ; Joseph Wat- 
son, clerk; and Wm. H. Payne, treasurer of 
District No. 6. On May 28, 1872, Superin- 
tendent Hurner gave notice that he proposed to 
take the northeast quarter of section 27 and 
the southeast quarter of section 22, township 
34, range 20, from District No. 6. If there 
was originally a district of this number or- 
ganized, it seems to have lost its organization 
very soon, and its territory must have been em- 
braced in other districts. The policy of the 
superintendent seems to have been, when a dis- 
trict of any number became extinct, to give that 
number to the next new district which should 
be organized, and this number was given to 
an entirely new district, situated in the central- 
southern part of Howard township. This dis- 
trict was fiirmed by an order made March 17, 

1872, on a petition dated March 9, 1872, signed 
by H. C. Long, William Blackford and others. 
The first school meeting in this new district 
was held at the house of E. R. Lee, on March 
30, 1872, and the following- officers elected: 
R. M. Roberts, director; John .Ahorse, clerk; 
Wm. Stevenson, treasurer. 


The original order for the formation of 
this district located it in the southwest corner 
of Oswego township, and a portion of Rich- 


land township lying north of Labette creek. 
A report dated September 14, 1867, signed by 
Francis \l. Brockus, shows 31 chiklren of 
school age in tiie district. This was the only 
item in the report, and this was the only re- 
port of the district as thns located which is 
now on file, and it seems that within the next 
few months this territory was absorbed by 
other districts, and this district became extinct. 
On December 14, 1869, Abner DeCou, Alex- 
ander Bishop. D. S. Bishop, Henry Newcomb 
and Henry G. Pore petitioned for the forma- 
tion of a district to embrace sections 10. 11, 
12. 13, 14 and 15, in Hackberry township; 
and by an order made on the 17th of that 
month this territory, and also section 7 in Rich- 
land township, was formed into a new district 
designated as No. 7. A school-house was built 
in the fall of 1870, but before the erection of 
a school-house one term of school had been 
taught in a private house belonging to Henry 
Pore, on section 10. This first school was 
taught, ciimmencing in the fall of 1869, ]:)y 
Miss Esther Biggs. 


This district is located in the southwestern 
part of Montana township. The first officers 
were: Samuel Dunham, director ; R. S. Cor- 
nish, clerk; Joseph Brown, treasurer. The 
first report of this district is dated September 
I, 1868, signed by R. S. Cornish, clerk, and 
shows ^y children of school age in the district, 
but no school having been taught therein. The 
first school in the district seems to 'have been 
taught in the spring of 1869, by A. A. Biggs. 
The report dated Sei)tember 10. 1869, signed 
by E. <;. l\ol)inson, clerk, shows t,/ children 
of school age, and an attendance of 21 at 
school, the axerage daily attendance being 15, 

and the salary of the teacher $24 per month. 
A log school-house was put up in 1868, and 
in 1 87 1 a good frame building took its place. 


This district is located in Montana town- 
ship, east of the Neosho river. It must have 
formed in 1867, althoug'h there is no record of 
its organization ; nor indeed is there any record 
showing anything in reference thereto prior 
to 1870, when the district board is reported to 
have been composed of David M. Watson, 
Benjamin F. Hanson, and James H. White. 
On December 5, 1881, the school-house was de- 
stroyed by fire; and as the limit allowed by 
law for bonds had previously been reached, 
and the bonds were still outstanding, it was 
determined to raise funds by subscription with 
which to build. Considerable outside aid w-as 
secured, especially from thfe business men of 
Oswego. In this way the district was again 
soon supplied \\ith a house. 


This district was originally organized by 
Superiacendent Newlon, embracing two miles 
in width on the north side of Fairview town- 
ship and three miles in width on the south 
side of Liberty township, from the east line 
of said township five miles west. Wm. H. 
Cline was the first clerk, and on September ii, 
1867, reported no school having been taught 
in the district, but an enrollment of 24 males 
and 19 females of school age. The first school 
in the district was taught by Wm. H. Cline, as 
is shown by the report of W. J. Conner, clerk, 
dated September i, 1865 (evidently intended 
for 1868), at a salary of $33.33 1-3 per month. 
The school was taught in a claim cabin on the 



southeast quarter of section 27, belonging to 
the estate of A. W. Ricliardson. The attend- 
ance at this school was 10 males and 3 fe- 
males, with an average attendance of 3 1-6. 
Jo'hn Richardson succeeded W. J. Conner as 
clerk, and in the winter of 1868 James F. 
Molesworth taught a three-months' school at 
a salary of $35 per month, with an average at- 
tendance of 14 1-2. This school was taught 
in the new hewed-log school-house which had 
just been erected on the southwest quarter of 
section 35. This house was built by subscrip- 
tion with the understanding that the parties 
should be repaid when the district could raise 
funds, which was done. The town of Labette 
was started in June, 1870, and thereafter the 
school was taught in town. The first school 
in town was opened in a rented room on the 
east side of the railroad track, October 6, 1870, 
by J. L. \Villiams. In December the board 
bought a two-story frame building on the west 
side of the railroad track, known as Bates' 
Hall. The lower part was occupied by the pub- 
lishers of the Sentinel as a printing-office. The 
school was mo\ed to the second story of this 
building, where ^Ir. Williams and his wife, 
Rachel Williams, Ijnth taught in one room. 
This building served as the school-house until 
June 6, 1878, when it was blown down and 
entirely destroyed by a tornado. Dr. Conner, 
seeing that his barometer indicated a storm, 
went to the school-house and directed school 
to be dismissed. The scholars were scarcely 
home till the house was in fragments. A new 
house was at once erected, and ready for occu- 
pancy that fall. Since 1881 the following named 
persons have taught in the more advanced of 
the two rooms of the school in this district : 
W. F. Thorne, H. G. Jenkins, J. T. Stone, W. 
V. McDowell, John Owen, E. L. Christy, Ar- 
thur Cranston, R. P. Arnold, Leslie Scott and 

Allen Piatt. JNIessrs. McDowell, Christy, Ar- 
nold, Scott and Piatt each taught more than 
one year, and one or two of them officiated 
several years. 


This was a union district, embracing the 
northeastern part of Neosho township, lying 
west of the river, and a part of Neosho county, 
with the school site at Jacksonville, in Neo- 
sho county. On September 12, 1867, David 
Evans, clerk, reported that Jennie McDonald 
had taught a three-months' school at a salary 
of $23.33 i"3 P^r month, with an enrollment 
of 15 scholars, and an average attendance of 
9. The following year O. Herraman and A. 
J. Kennedy, the former at a salary of $60 and 
the latter $25 per month, taught a four-months'' 
school, with a total enrollment of 55. 


This district lies in the western part of Fair- 
view township. There is no doubt but that a 
district was formed having this number by Su- 
perintendent Newlon, although there is nothing 
on file showing its original organization, nor 
anything in respect to the district, until after 
1869, On February ii, 1870, an order was 
made for the formation of the district, and the 
first election directed to be held at the house of 
\\'illiam Wood, on February 2^1, 1870. Wheth- 
er the district of this number formed in 1867 
embraced entirely different territory, the or- 
ganization of which never became perfected, 
or whether it originally embraced the same 
territory as is now comprised in the district, I 
am unable, with the information I now have, 
to decide; I am however, disposed to think 
that District No. 12 as formed by Superintend- 



ent Newlon was never fully organized, but 
was laid off when there was little settlement, 
and contained within its bounds the territory 
forming that district as we now know it. The 
first officers as now shown by the records were, 
in 1870, Frank Williams, director; I. W. Pat- 
rick, clerk; A. S. Spaulding, treasurer. 


The first report on file is not dated, but is 
supposed to be the report for 1867. It is 
signed by B. W. Bennett, clerk, and represents 
this district as being in Big Hill township. It 
is otherwise blank, excepting the statement that 
there are 8 males and 10 females in the dis- 
trict. The next report is signed by Henry M. 
Minor, clerk, and is dated August 31, 1868, 
showing 2.2 males and 20 females in the district, 
and that there has been a three-months' school 
taught in the district, but not by a qualified 
lencher; of course this was a private school. 
While the report does not shu,v it, the fact is 
this was a subscription school, taught in the 
summer of 1867 by Alice Biggs, in the old log 
store building belonging to B. F. Simons — 
the first house built on . the town-site. Mr. 
Minor remained clerk the following year, and 
reix)rted 82 children of school age in the dis- 
trict, 46 of whom were attending school. A 
three-months' school had been taught by John 
Hudson, at $26.33 2-3 per month. This first 
public school was taught in an old log house 
on the southwest quarter of section 8, town- 
ship 32, range 21, in the spring of 1869. In 
1870 the board consisted of J. J. Woods, direc- 
tor ; H. M. Minor, clerk ; and A. Gebhart, treas- 
urer. Capt. A. Gebhart and J. J. Woods were 
the building committee for the erection of a new 
school-house. Bonds in the sum of $3,000 were 
voted, and the house cost $2,200. It was dedi- 
cated November 19, 1870, Colonel Horner de- 

livering the address. Soon thereafter the first 
school in the new house was taught, by E. D. 
Graybill. The old building having become 
badly out of repair, bonds were voted early in 
1897, and a new school building was erected 
that summer, and in which school was opened 
at the commencement of 1898. Two teachers 
have been employed since 1888, and part of the 
time during some prior years. The teachers 
in the more advanced room since 1888 have 
been: W. A. McKee, Lena Bates, Homer 
Metier, Flora Beak, R. P. Arnold, Leslie Scott, 
Tully DeArmond, Lula Peak, Sherd Barcus, 
Lillie Willi and Angeline Phillips. 


The original order for the formation of this 
district is not to be found ; but a petition dated 
March 6, 1868, signed by J. H. Hart and some 
20 more residents of the district, asking for a 
change in the boundaries of the district, seems 
to have been granted March 9, 1868. The first 
report is signed by James F. Molesworth. clerk, 
and dated September i, 1868. It shows 18 chil- 
dren in the district, and that a public school 
was then in progress. This was the first school 
in the district. It was taught by Mrs. Alme- 
da Molesworth, in a cabin standing on the 
southeast quarter of section 17, belonging to 
S. T. Cherry. The following year j\Ir. ^Moles- 
worth reported 46 children in the district, 38 
of whom were attending school, the average 
attendance being 17, and that Almeda Moles- 
worth had taught a three-months' school at a 
salary of $22 per month. The school-house 
was built in 1869; it was a frame building, cov- 
ered with walnut siding. 


This district is located near the north part 
of Neosho township, east of the Neosho River. 



The first report is dated September i, 1868, 
signed by Edward Spicer, clerk, and shows 
only that there were 34 children in the dis- 
trict. The next report is signed by O. Sweet, 
clerk, and shows 50 children in the district, 
with 42 attending school, the average attend- 
ance being 24, and that Miss Jennie M. Beck 
had taught a three-months' school at a salary 
of $15 per month. 


On January 29, 1868, L. A. Rogers and 
James W. Galyen presented a petition for the 
formation of this district. It was made to em- 
brace the northwestern part of Neosho town- 
ship and the northeastern part of North town- 
ship. Prior to this, Superintendent Newlon 
seems to have formed, or to have contemplated 
the formation of this district, but no order for 
such formation is to be found. The first re- 
port, dated August i, 1868, signed by L. A. 
Rogers, clerk, shows 33 children in the dis- 
trict, with 37 attending school, and an aver- 
age attendance of 16. Mrs. Pauline A. Ames 
had taught a three-months' school, at a salary 
of $20 per month. A. P. Gore succeeded Mr. 
Rogers as clerk, and the following year makes 
two reports — one in August, showing 39 chil- 
dren in the district. 20 of \yhom had been at- 
tending school, and one in October, showing 
78 children in the district, 57 of whom had 
been attending school. E. H. Taylor had taught 
a three-months' school at a salary of $33.33 1-3 
per month. The first school-house in the dis- 
trict was built of logs, the settlers turning out 
and doing the work; it was located on section 
7, in Neosho township, and was put up in the 
fall of 1868. Subsequently the site was 
changed to North township, and a good frame 
building was erected. 


The original order for the formation of 
this district is not among the public records. 
But probably in 1868 Superintendent Reed, on 
the petition of L. N. Shelledy, Samuel Lewis, 
\V. H. Scott, Ed. Mercer, and other residents 
of the district, made an order for the subdivis- 
ion of said district; the boundary of this dis- 
trict thereafter to commence at the northeast 
corner of Liberty township, thence extending 
south three and one-half miles, to Labette 
Creek. The first report of this district is 
signed by \V. B. Jones, clerk, dated Septem- 
ber 14, 1868, and simply shows 21 children 
in the district. In a report dated September 
14, 1869, signed by Charles Demend, clerk, 
it is shown that there are 53 children in the 
district, with 10 attending a three-months' 
school, taught by Miss Mary Bowlu, at a sal- 
ary of $12 per month; but there is also a re- 
port on file dated September 15, 1869, signed 
by Eli Sayers, clerk, showing 66 children in 
the district, 44 in school, but not giving the 
name of the teacher. Evidently one of these 
is intended for some other district, but both 
purport to be for District No. 17. 


This district was formed during Superin- 
tendent Newlon's administration, but the rec- 
ord thereof is not now to be found. On April 
4. 1868, on the petition of F. W. Latham, it 
was reorganized and made to embrace a tract 
three miles square in the southwestern part of 
what is now North township. The first re- 
port, dated September 8, 1868, signed by Aaron 
Midkiff, clerk, shows 24 children in the dis- 
trict, but no school. F. W. Latham, clerk, 
in a report dated August 31, 1869, reports 45 



children in the district, but no sciiool taught. 
In the spring of 1873 a school-house was erect- 
ed and well furnished, from the proceeds of $1.- 
000 in bonds which had been voted. This house 
was used until some time in the "nineties" 
when it was replaced by a new ])uilding. 

m'cormick (afterwards Cunningham) 
district, no. 19. 

According to tlie records now on file, this 
district was formed October 7, 1868, and em- 
braced the northwest part of what is now 
Mound Valley township. The district seems 
to have been contemplated in 1867, but the 
record of its organization, if one was had at 
that time, is lost. The first report, dated Oc- 
tober 15, 1868, signed by William Jones, clerk, 
shows 18 children in the district, but no school. 
On August 14, 1869, the first meeting was held, 
at which it was decided to locate the school- 
house on the northwest corner of ^Irs. Mc- 
Michael's claim, and to circulate a subscrip- 
tion paper for material for building a school- 
house. J. Bishop, clerk, reported 13 children 
in the district at that date. The first school in 
the district was taught in a "shake" claim- 
house, with dirt floor, on section 26, township 
32, range 17, liy Mrs. Mollie Courtney, com- 
mencing in September, i86g. This was a sub- 
scription school, and continued for three 
months. In 1870 the board consisted of J. H. 
Beggs, director; H. B. Griffith, clerk; and J. 
M. Courtne}-, treasurer. 


1"he original nrder fnr the formation of 
tliis district is in the handwriting of Super- 
intendent Xewlon, and seems to have been the 
last district formed under his administration. 

It is located in Montana township, east of the 
Xeosho. Aside from the order for its organ- 
ization, there is nothing on file showing that 
anything had been done therein prior to April 
20, 1870, when the petition of Daniel Hoy and 
others was presented for a change in this dis- 
trict, which seems to have been made; also re- 
organization thereof had in the early part of 
1874. The first report on file is dated Septem- 
ber 12, 1870, signed by James White, clerk. 


This district is located in the southwest 
corner of Neosho township. There is nothing 
of record, either original or copies, showing 
when it was organized. It must have been 
during Superintendent Newlon's administra- 
tion, or very soon after Superintendent Reed 
came into ofiice. The first report, dated Sep- 
tember lo, 1868, is signed by Newberry Coop- 
er, clerk, in which he says that they have had 
no school, but will have the following winter 
if they can get their house completed in time. 
The report shows 54 children in the district. 
September 15, 1869, Mr. Cooper again reports, 
showing 68 children in the district, 47 of whom 
have attended a three-months' school taught 
by Miss Mary Slane, w'ho had received $2 per 
scholar, there being no public money in the 


On a petition of Harvey I. Cox and others, 
dated January 19, 1869, this district was 
formed, embracing the southwestern corner of 
North township. The first election was held 
at the house of Harvey I. Cox, on February 
13, 1869. Harvey I. Cox was the first clerk. 
In 1870 a frame school-house was built, which 



was replaced with a fine brick liouse about four- 
teen or fifteen years ago. 


Under date of March .28, 1869, Superin- 
tendent Elliott made an order for the forma- 
tion of District No. 2t,, in the northeast part 
of Oswego township, north and east of the 
Neosho river, and appointed the first school 
meeting to be held at the 'house of D. M. 
Clov-er, April 7, 1869. On August 31, 1870. 
what is marked as the second annual report 
was made by L. W. Grain, which is the first 
now on file. It shows 33 children in the dis- 
trict, 24 of whom were attending school, with 
an average attendance of 20. The school- 
house was not plastered until 1871. 


On ]\Iarch ii, 1869, the petition of W. S. 
Newlon, R. \V. Bagby, S. Holbrook, C. Mon- 
tague, F. Swanwick and others was presented 
for the formation of a new district. Upon 
this petition the order of the superintendent was 
made, forming District No. 24, embracing the 
north part of Oswego township and the south 
part of ^Montana township. The first officers 
were: C. Montague, director: Henry Lively, 
clerk : F. Swanwick, treasurer, chosen at the 
first meeting, which was held at the house of 
W. Lane, April 10. 1869. The first report is 
dated September 14, 1869. signed by Henry 
Lively, showing 42 children in the district, 38 
in attendance upon school, with an average at- 
tendance of 13 1-3, and a subscription school 
•having been taught by Miss Amanda Powers. 
This was the first school in the district, and was 
taught in a cabin on the southeast quarter of 
section 5, Oswego township. In January, 

1870, a log house was built at the southwest 
corner of section t,t,, in Montana township; it 
was built by subscription for church and school 
purposes. The first public school in the district 
was taught by Henry Lively, commencing in 
this house as soon as it was completed. The 
next school was taught by John P. Jones, com- 
mencing November, 1870. On September 2y, 
1873, 3t a public meeting of the district, a new 
school-house- site was selected, on section 5, 
and it was voted to erect a stone school-house 


February 15, 1869, C. M. Fentriss, M. 
Huntley, G. W. Yandle, L. W. Leak, and sev- 
eral other residents of the territory, petitioned 
for the formation of a district in the north- 
west corner of Richland township, lying east of 
Labette Greek. The petition was granted, and 
District No. 25 was organized. There are no 
officers reported until 1870. when the board 
consisted of Lewis \V. Leak, director: L. F. 
Summers, clerk ; and H. G. Hardway, treasur- 
er. The school-house was built in the sum- 
mer of 1 87 1, and in it, in the fall of that year, 
John Lawrence commenced teaching the first 
school in the district. In 1899. a new school- 
house was erected to take the place of the old 
one, which had become much out of repair. 


On April 17, 1869. an order was made for 
the formation of District No. 26. No boun- 
daries are given in the order, 'but it seems to 
have been situated in Hackberrv township. The 
first meeting was held at tlie house of G. W. 
Franklin, April 30, 1869. On September 14, 
1869, James McRoberts, clerk, reported 40 
children in the district, but that no school had 


been taught. In 1870 the board consisted of 
J. M. McCoon, director; G. W. Frankhn, 
clerk; George S. Downing, treasurer. 


On April i8, 1869, this district was formed, 
and embraced the central portion of Fairview 
township, extending east as far as Labette 
Creek. The first meeting was held at the house 
of Joseph Barker, on April 6, 1869. Septem- 
ber 7, 1869, A. S. Potter, clerk, reported 56 
children in the district, no school 'having yet 
been taught therein. In the fall of 1869 a sub- 
scription school was taught by Esther Biggs, 
in a log house on the northwest quarter of 
section 2}^. Thomas Bulwer was director, A. S. 
Potter, clerk, and E. Wiggins, treasurer, in 
1870. In the fall of 1870 the first public 
school in the district was taught by Mary E. 
Dickerman, in a frame house on the north- 
west quarter of section 27. A school-house 
was built in the spring of 1871, which, on May 
21, 1885, was burned to the ground. 


This district is situated in the central part 
of Hackberry township, south of Hackberry 
Creek. The first official document which I 
now find among the public records relative to 
District No. 28 is an annual report dated Au- 
gust 31, 1870, signed by John Shumckci, 
clerk. The only item of information contained 
in this report is that they have 24 children in 
the district; no school is yet reported. I can 
find nothing further among the public records 
indicating when it was organized. 


This district was formed April 29, 1869, 
on a petition of J. P. D. Mouriquand, J. M. 

Logan, George Pfaff, and others, and embraced 
a tract in the north part of Fairview township 
extending west from Labette Creek. The first 
election was held at the house of J. S. Mc- 
Manis, on May 11, 1869. September 8, 1869, 
M. H. Logan, clerk, reported 34 children in 
the district, but that no school had been taught. 
The first school-house was built in the fall of 


This district is located in the central part 
of Osage township. A log house was used 
for the first school-house in the district, and 
in it William Jeans taught the first school, in 
the summer of 1869. In the summer of 1871 
a frame house was built, and in it the follow- 
ing- winter the first school was taught, by John 
Stroud. The first school board consisted of 
Leroy F. Dick, director; William H. Carpen- 
ter, clerk; and Henry Reed, treasurer. Anoth- 
er reports the board to have been W. H. Car- 
penter, director; George N. Jeans, clerk; and 
J. H. Dienst, treasurer. 


This district must have been organized in 
1869, although the records concerning its or- 
ganization are not to be found. As originally 
constituted, it embraced the entire northwestern 
quarter of North township; subsequently its 
territory was much reduced, District No. 104 
having been taken therefrom. There is no re- 
port or other official record wdiatever on file 
with reference to the district prior to 1871, 
when the board consisted of S. Hardman, di- 
rector; James F. Harris, clerk; A. J. Ingra- 
ham, treasurer. 


NO. 32. 

Tliis district is situated in the nort'hern part 
of North township. The record of its organi- 
zation, if one was made, is lost. The first 
we have is a report made August 31, 1870, by 
A. Fagan, clerk, showing they have 50 chil- 
dren in the district, 30 attending school, with 
an average attendance of 22. In 1871 the board 
was composed of George Miner, J. C. Merwin, 
and C. W. Rictor. 


A petition dated February 23, 1869, made 
by R. T. Caldwell, Anson Kellogg, A. Mid- 
kiff, S. N. Fultz, Maria Hussey, George Brock, 
and several others, was presented to the super- 
intendent, on which he soon thereafter made an 
order for the organization of District No. 33, 
embracing, in addition to the territory now 
composed in that district, several additional 
sections. The first meeting was held at the 
house of Aaron Midkiff, at which the follow- 
ing officers were elected : Anson Kellogg, di- 
rector; George M. Wilson, clerk; Joseph Simp- 
son, treasurer. September 10, 1869, George 
M. \\'ils(jn, clerk, reported 20 males and 
14 females in the district on the 31st of 
August, 15 of whom — 10 males and 5 
females, with an average attendance of 10 
- — were in school, in progress at that time, 
taught by Maria Hussey, at a salary of $16.66 
2-^ per month. This school was taught in an 
out-house belonging to A. Midkiff. on the 
southwest quarter of section 19, North town- 
ship. The next school was taught from Sep- 
tember to December, 1870, by Miss Sophronia 
Emery, in a vacant log house belonging to 
Sanuiel Eves, on the northeast quarter of sec- 

tion 24, in Walton township. This was the first 
public school taught in the district. On March 
31, 1870, the first annual meeting was held, at 
the 'house of Aaron Midkiff, and the following 
officers elected : Anson Kellogg, director ; H. 
L. Partridge, clerk; George Brock, treasurer. 
The latter failing to qualify, W. K. Hayes was 
soon after appointed to fill the vacancy; and 
this same board was continued in office during 
two years. In March, 1872, they elected Dr. 
G. W. Gabriel director, T. C. Cory, clerk, and 
Dr. T. R. Warren, treasurer. At the meeting 
held March 31, 1870, the board were directed 
to take steps to build a school-house. On 
September 17th of that year, bonds in the 
sum of $1,000 were voted, and the board pur- 
chased lots 15 and 16 in block ^2, and on this, 
during the winter of 1870 and tl:e spring of 
1 87 1, a one-story frame building was erected 
as the first school-house in the district. It 
was not completed until June, and was accept- 
ed by the board August i, 1871. On May 8, 
1 87 1, Miss Kate Squires and Miss Sophronia 
Emery began a subscription school in the new 
school building, which was then enclosed but 
not fully completed. On August loth the 
board decided to enlarge the building by add- 
ing six feet on the west end, making two school- 
rooms. This house was afterward bought by 
the colored people, to be used as a church. 
The house thus completed was Iniilt with 
the proceeds of the $1 000 in bonds. In the 
fall of 1 87 1 the school opened in the new 
school-house, with E. H. Taylor and Miss 
Sophronia Emery as teachers. On October 3, 
1 87 1, on a vote to issue $15,000 in bonds with 
which to erect a new school-house, there were 
108 votes in favor of the proposition, and but 
5 against it. The bonds were sold at 87 1-2 
cents on the dollar. In January, 1872, the 
contract for the erection of this building was 



let to T. B. Douglas, of Clinton. ]\Iissouri. for 
$11,993. O" 1"S failure to give bond satis- 
factory to the board, the}^ attempted to take 
the contract from him and give it to Martin 
Mason, also of Clinton. Missouri, at the agreed 
price of $13,000; but the district assumed to 
overrule this action, and allowed Mr. Douglas 
to go on with the work. He failed to com- 
plete his contract, and the district 'had the loss 
to sustain. The building was completed and 
ready for the opening of school in the fall of 
1872. In March, 1873, Parsons was incorpor- 
ated as a city of the second class, whereupon the 
Ixiard of education was elected at the city elec- 
tion, in April. Presidents of the board: 1873, 
George A. Reynolds; 1874, O. L. Hall, George 
W. Briggs; 1875, G. C. West; 1876-79, A. 
Wilson; 1880-81, R. H. Patrick; 1882, Will- 
iam Moir; 1883, S. W. Kniffin; 1884. J. M. 
Gregory; 1885, W. J. Quick; 1886, I. N. Mc- 
Creery; 1887. J. M. Caldwell; 1888, R. D. Tal- 
bot; 1889-90, J. T. Tinder; 1891, A. H. Tyler; 
1892. O. H. Stuart. G. H. L. Copeland; 1893, 
Ira F. Adams; 1894, R. M. Johnson; 1895-96, 
W. H. Martin; 1897, George S. Anderson; 
1898, A. B. Manning; 1899, F. O. Boyd; 1900, 
Josiah Richmond. Clerks: 1873, J. H. Metier 
and \V. A. Gillam; 1874, P. M. Grififin; 1875, 
M. Xoyes; 1876, George Thornton; 1877-81, 
James Grimes; 1882-86. A. H. Tyler; 1887, C. 
W. Duzan and A. G. Thurman; 1888, A. H. 
Tyler and A. G. Thurman; 1889, Mary S. Out- 
land and J. W. Iden; 1890-99, J. W. Iden ; 
1900, Arthur Cranston, Principals: 1872, J. 
H. Griffith; 1873, David Donavan; 1874, Mrs. 
E. J. Collins; 1875. Mrs. Jennie Arthur. Up 
to 1876 the schools were superintended by citi- 
zens who were not teachers, and who were 
expected to do little more than have a general 
oversight, to know what the schools were do- 
ing. J. G. Parkhurst and M. W. Reynolds 

were two of the parties who filled this posi- 
tion. Commencing with 1876, the superin- 
tendents had charge of the school, and did more 
or less teaching. Superintendents: 1876, B. 
F. Hickey; 1877-79, M. Chidester; 1880, O. 
M. McPherson; 1881-87, L. Tomlin ; 1888- 
90, C. H. Harris; 1891-94, H. C. Ford; 1894- 
98, S. D. Frazier; 1898-99, H. Winsor; 1899- 
190 1. N. H. McDonald. The first graduate Maude G. Keyser, who completed the 
course in 1881 ; there was no graduating class 
in 1882. There have been 71 males and 156 
females, total 22/. graduated from the high 
school. There are four ward school buildings, 
all brick, as follows: the first, built in 1872, in 
the Second Ward, on the west half of block 
3, costing $15 000; the second, erected in 1880, 
in the Third Ward, between Twenty-third and 
Twenty-fourth streets and between Belmont 
and Corning avenues, costing $10,000; the 
third, erected in the First Ward, in 1881, on 
block III, cost $6,000; the fourth, erected in 
1884, in the Fourth Ward, situated west of 
block 160, cost $12,000. A high school build- 
ing, situated in the west part of the city, cost- 
ing $30,000, was completed in 1893. A new 
ward building for the Fourth AVard. costing 
$10,000, was erected in 1899, in place of the 
original one, w'hich was taken down. 



' This district was formed July 8, 1869. and 
embraced a tract in Mound Valley township, 
west of Pumpkin Creek, and north of the line 
between townships 32 and 33, The first elec- 
tion was held at the house of C. Lyerly, July 
2, 1869. J. M. Richardson was the principal 
one interested in the organization of this dis- 
trict. The first school taught in the district was 
in a house belonging to Mr. Richardson, by his 


son, J. M. Richardson, Jr. The school was 
taught for several years in this house. Bonds 
were thereafter issued, and a new school-house 
erected. In 1870 the officers were : J. M. Rich- 
ardson, director; William Reeder, clerk; Jnhn 
B. Campbell, treasurer. 


This district was formed July 9, i86g, and 
embraced a tract in the southwest part of Osage 
township, most of it lying in what is now 
Montgomery county. The first election was 
held at the house of A. \\\ Cook, July 20, 
1869. When this territory was attached to 
Montgomery county this district became disor- 
ganized. In 1872 a new district was organized, 
in the extreme southwestern corner of the 
county, and was given this number. Its first 
officers were : Wm. Mabrey, director ; W. S. 
Getsyendinger, clerk; W. B. Roberts, treas- 
urer. Mr. Mabrey was director for fourteen 
years. Some time thereafter a storehouse in 
Parker was ]jurchased, and moved out to the 
district for its first school-house. 


This district was formed July lo, 1869, 
and lay in the southwest part of Osage town- 
ship. The first meeting was held July 20, 1869. 
Miss Josie Hockett taught her first school in 
a log cabin on the southeast quarter of section 
6, township ;^2, range 18. The first board now 
shown by records was that for 1870, and was 
composed of S. C. Hockett, director; Charles 
Beggs, clerk ; and William Johns, treasurer. 


This district was formed July lo, 1869, and 
lay in the southern part of Osage township. 
The first election was held at the house of F. 
Labadie. July 20, 1869. In the fall of 1869, 

E. D. Graybill induced the settlers to put up a 
log house on the southwest corner of Timber 
Hill town-site, in which that winter he taught 
the first school in the district. The following 
winter W. .\. Starr taught in this building. A. 
W. King was clerk in 1S70; he is the only offi- 
cer reported prior to 1871. 


Was formed July lo. 1869, and lay in the cen- 
tral part of Osage township, and embraced the 
present town-site of D.ennis. A log house was 
put up in this district in the spring of 1870, in 
which Mrs. Lapham taught a three-months' 
school. After the location of Dennis in this 
district a "new frame school-house was erected 
in town, in the summer of 1885. The district 
board in 1870 consisted of N. P. Lapham, di- 
rector; George ^V. Major, clerk; Jacob Beaty, 
treasurer. The first frame school-house burned 
down and thereafter a two-room building was 
erected farther north than the site of the old 
house. Since employing two teachers, the prin- 
cipals, or teachers in the more ad\-anced room, 
have been: 1889-90, E. H. Easterling; 1890- 
91, S. L. Fogleman; 1891-92, Rose Williams; 
1892-95, C. E. Boye; 1895-96, Olive Ten 
Broeck; 1896-97, C. S. Neale; 1897-98, E. C. 
McKinley; 1898-99, S. F. McClelland; 1899- 
1900. E. C. McKinley; 1900-01, S. O. King. 


On July 10, 1869, an order was mide for 
the formation of this district, but probably it 
was not acted on, for anotl'.er order was made 
on April 6, 1870, under which the district was 
formed, and lay in the northwest corner of 
Walton township. The first meeting was held 
at the house of M. S. Mason, on April 16, 1870, 
at which George T. Walton, M. S. Mason and 


John Lunciford were elected tlie board for that 


Is situated in the central-eastern part of Mound 
Valley township, and includes the town of 
Mound Valley. This district was formed in 
the summer of i86q, although there is nothing 
now on file showing that fact. The first an- 
nual report was made August 31, 1870, by 
Alexander Honrath, clerk; it shows 33 chil- 
dren in the district, 22 in school, with an av- 
erage attendance of 11. In 1870 the board was 
composed of Josephus Moore, Alexander Hon- 
rath, and L. C. Wilmoth. A new two-story 
building was erected in the summer of 1882, 
and in 1885 an addition was made thereto. 
In 1885, the high school was organized, and 
since then there have been graduated 15 boys 
and 35 girls, total 50. Since the establish- 
ment of the high school, the principals have 
been: A. Moore, three years; J. T. McGee, 
two years; A. D. Martin, two years; A. J. 
Lovett, two years : C. H. Williams, two years ; 
S. L. Fogleman, two 3'ears; and again, A. J. 
Lovett, three years. 


While there is no record thereof, an attempt 
must have been made in the summer of 1869 
to form the district, which probably failed. It 
was formed May 12, 1871, and lay in the south- 
eastern corner of Mound Valley township. The 
first meeting was held May 27, 1871, on peti- 
tion therefor, signed by Joseph Moore, Alex- 
ander Honrath, John Campbell, S. W. Slocum, 

E. Tanner and others. The first school in the 
district was taught in 1879, by Delia Wilson, 
in a cabin on section 21,. belonging to Rev. 

F. I^. Walker. .A school-house was not built 
until 1880. 


On June 7. 1870, E. P. Emery, Wni. R. 
Abies, and others petitioned for a district in 
the southwestern part of Walton township. I 
find no record of its formation, but it seems 
to have been organized soon after the presen- 
tation of the petition. S. B. Shafifer, J. A. 
Jones and G. B. Hughes are reported as the 
board in 1870. A school-house was built near 
the southeast corner of section 20 in the spring 
of 1 87 1. In 1890 this first building was re- 
placed by a new and much better one. The first 
school in the district was taught by Miss So- 
phronia Emery, in a log house on R. P. Clark's 
claim, in the fall of 1870. 


Was formed October 4, 1 869, and embraced the 
southeast corner of Labette township and the 
northeastern corner of Mount Pleasant town- 
ship, and includes the city of Altaniont. In 
1870 the board were G. Conner, J. C. Mur- 
phy, and John Elston. The first school-house 
was built in 1872, and was used until the num- 
ber of scholars became so great that it would 
no longer accommodate them in any way, when 
it was sold to J. T. Waller, by whom it was 
moved across the street, where it still stands, 
and is used for a dwelling. In 1880 the dis- 
trict employed J. B. Jones to erect a new house 
upon the same site formerly occupied by the 
old one. The district again outgrew this house 
and in 1884 another room had to be added. 
The building thus improved accommodated 
the district until 1891, when $4,000 in bonds 
were voted, the old school-house was sold to the 
Christians for the purpose of being reconstruct- 
ed into a church building, and a new two-story 
brick school-house erected under a contract 
with J. B. Jones, occupying the same site as its 



predecessors. Since the erection of the sec- 
ond school-house in 1880, and the employment 
of more than one teacher, the principals of the 
school, so far as I ha\e been able to learn, have 
been: Lizzie Sullivan, Alvah Shick, Mr. Cot- 
ton,T. J. Gobble, H. A. Mossman, J. M. Chans- 
ler, H. C. Long, W. H. Conner, Charles Bell, 
Dean Coleman, D. H. Martin, S. O. King, 
Charles Harrington, L. Lightfoot, J. F. John- 
son, S. F. McClelland. 



In 1870 the petition of John Connor, 
John W. Logan and other citizens was pre- 
sented for the formation of a district in the 
southwest corner of Liberty township, which 
petition was granted, and on January 29, 
1870, an order made under which District 
No. 44 was organized. William F. Gross, 
.William J. IlifT and S. W. Collins were 
the first board, elected at the first meeting of 
the district, held at the house of W. J. Iliff, 
February 11, 1870. 


Is situated in the northeastern part of Elm 
Grove township. I find no record whatever in 
reference to it prior to 187 1, except the names 
of the board for 1870: they were Daniel Mc- 
Intyre, John Lane, and Madison Sharp. The 
district must have been formed early in 1870. 
The first school in the district was taught in 
the summer of 1870, by Sarah Ackerson, after- 
wards the wife of Henry G. Pore, in her own 
claim cabin on the northeast quarter of section 
14. The school-house was built in 1872, and 
Lon Blanchard taught the first school in it. 

NO. 46, 

Is in the central part of Neosho township, west 
of the Neosho River. The record is entirely 
silent as to the date of its formation, and I 
find no report prior to 1871, but in 1870 the 
board consisted of E. H. Taylor, Samuel 
Frank, and E. H. Wells. 


Was formed jMarch 24, 1870, and em- 
braced a tract of land in the southwest of Lib- 
erty township and the southeast of Labette 
township. This district was formed on the pe- 
tition of Caleb Haskill, T. M. Gibson, and 
others, dated December 30, 1869. The first 
school meeting was held at the house of C. T. 
Haskill, April 4, 1870. P. M. Gibson, Edward 
Hiatt and C. F. Haskill are the officers reported 
for 1871. 


Is situated in the northeast corner of Liberty 
and northwest corner of Montana township. 
In the spring of 1870 the first school was 
taught, in George Metcalfs old log house on 
the northeast quarter of section 13. by Miss 
Sidney Johnson ; this was a subscription school. 
In the spring of 1871 an old store building 
was moved from Labette and placed on the 
northeast corner of the southwest quarter of 
section 12, township 32, range 20; this was the 
first school-house. Two years later it was 
moved over onto the southeast quarter. The 
first school board, as now shown on the coun- 
tv records, was in 1870, and consisted of James 



Morning, director; S. S. Saytor. clerk; George 
Morning, treasurer. I judge from all that ap- 
pears that the district was projjably organized 
early in 1870. 


Is situated in the central-southern part of Elm 
Grove township, bordering on the State line. 
I have no means of telling from the public rec- 
ords when this district was formed. The first 
ofificial paper relative to it which I have been 
able to find is the report made by Jonas Burris, 
on August 31, 1870. showing 48 children in 
the district, with an average attendance of 21 
at school. I find among the records a letter 
signed by Ben M. Smith, deted September 8, 
1870, in which he says that the district is com- 
posed mostly of single men ; that their school 
has been kept but two weeks, the teacher hav- 
ing been paid ofif and quit; and that in reality 
the district has no organization. The officers 
reported for 1870 were: Colton B. Pratt, di- 
rector; B. M. Smith, clerk; and W. D. Scog- 
gans, treasurer. It is therefore likely the re- 
port made by Mr. Burris should be credited to 
some other district 


This district was probably formed in 1870, 
lying in the southeastern part of Elm Grove 
township. The first school was taught by Miss 
Unthank, in the house of Harvey Jones. The 
first board were: Ira Peck, director; D. D. P. 
Lucas, clerk; and George W. McGeyor, treas- 
urer. The first public school was taught in the 
winter of 1871 and 1872, by Miss Frank Hall. 


There is nothing of record showing any suc- 
cessful eft'ort at organizing this district till De- 
cember 29, 1875, when an order for its forma- 

tion was made, and the first election had on 
March 6, 1876. The first school-house in this 
district was an old store building bought and 
moved from Parker to near the center of sec- 
tion 20, townshi]^ 34, range 18, in 1879. In 
1886 this building was sold, changes were 
made in the boundary of the district, and the 
school-house site was changed and placed at 
Valeda, which had just been started. A new 
school-house was erected in 1886. 


This district lies in the central-eastern part 
of Mount Pleasant township. It was organized 
under an order made June 8, 1870, and the 
first election was directed to be held at the 
house of John R. Eldridge on June 20, 1870. 
The following officers were elected: (William 
Skilling, director, but declined to serve) ; Hen- 
ry Story, director; G. A. W. Grant, clerk; 
John Eldridge, treasurer. In 1871 the board 
consisted of Henry Story, director; G. A. W. 
Grant, clerk; W. Jones, treasurer. In the fall 
of 1870 Susan Story taught a subscription 
school in the Morrison claim house, on the 
southeast quarter of section 14. In the 
spring of 1871 the school-house was built, in 
which, commencing that fall, John Hamblin 
taught the first public school in the district. 


Was organized June 13, 1870, embracing the 
central-northern part of Walton township. The 
first school meeting was held at the residence 
of James Cahill, June 2c 1870. The first offi- . 
cers were William O'Brien, James Cahill, and 
Timothy O'Conner. 


On June 20, 1876, Ernest Wadsack, John 
Richardson, and some twenty more residents of 



that territory, petitioned for the formation of a 
district in the northeast corner of Fairview 
township, which on July 6th was granted and 
District No. 54 was organized. This district 
was, however, originally organized much earlier 
than this, althoug'h there is no record of the 
fact. In 1870 the board consisted of John 
Richardson, director; J. L. Williams, clerk; 

, treasurer. These are the first officers now 

shown by the records. The first school in the 
district was taught by Mrs. W. S. Park, in a 
cabin on the Dike farm, in the winter of 1870. 


Is located in the northwestern corner of North 
township. There is no record showing the 
time of its formation, but I learn it was or- 
ganized in 1868 through the efforts of Mr. 
Ballentine; perhaps the organization was not 
till the next year; at least, there is no record of 
any officers reported in 1869. The neighbors 
built a small board shanty on the northwest 
quarter of section 36, in which Elvira Binga- 
man, daughter of A. W. Jones, taught the first 
school, in the fall of 1868. A year or two after 
that the district was enlarged, and a new 
school-house costing $700 was built on section 
25, in 1872. This school-house was blown 
down in the stijrni that occurred on June 7, 
1900. A new building was at once erected. 
In 1870 the district board was composed of 
George Skelton, director; Samuel Ballentine, 
clerk; Robert C. Livesay, treasurer. This is 
the first that appears on the county record re- 
specting this district. 


Was organized in the central part of Canada 
townshi]), July 13, 1878. The first meeting 
was held August 19, 1878, officers elected and 

organization perfected. I find no account of 
any earlier organization, although it seems 
probable that one must at least ha\-e been at- 


Is located in the south-central part of Oswego 
township, and must have been organized early 
in 1870, although there is no record showing 
such fact. On August 31, 1870, T. Clark re- 
ported 47 children in the district, 41 attending 
school. The officers reported for 1870 are: 
John Overdeer, director; William Steel, clerk, 
Alice Spaukling was first teacher, her school 
commencmg in the fall of 1871, in the new 
school-house which had just been built. 


Was organized in the eastern part of Canada 
township, July 2^, 1878, and the first meeting 
held August 21, 1878. No record of any 
earlier organization exists, so far as I ha\'e 


As (iriginall}- constituted, embraced the north- 
west quarter of Mount Pleasant township. I 
find nothing on record showing anything of 
the formation of the district, or anything in 
reference thereto prior to 1870. For that year 
the district board are reported to l3e B. F. 
Jones. S. M. Canady, and O. B. Clark. The 
school-house was built in the summer of 1871, 
and the first school was taught b}- Mrs. H. Pot- 
tinger, wife of Samuel Pottinger, 


Is situated in the central-western part of Hack- 
berry townsiiip. There is nothing on record 
showing Avhen it was formed or what it did 


prior to 1871, when R. M. Roberts, John M. 
Morse and William Stevenson are recorded as 
the officers. 

CLOSSAR (or union) DISTRICT, NO. 6l. 

A petition of Daniel Corell and a number 
of the neighbors was presented for the forma- 
tion of a district in the southwest corner of 
Richland township. There is no record of the 
date of this, but it seems to have been formed 
sometime in 1870. The officers for that year 
were: J. F. Chamberlain, director: F. M. 
Mendenhall. clerk: and Samuel Hull, treas- 


Was formed May i8, 1872, on a petition of 
P. H. Cherry, G. Spicer and others, and is 
situated in the southeast corner of Neosho 


James M. Kinnamon, Isaac Wylch and 
others presaited a petition for the formation 
of a district in the central-northern part of 
Mound Valley township. It was formed June 
18, 1872, an order for its formation having 
been made on May 20, 1872. It lies in both 
Osage and Mound \'alley townsliiiDS. 


A petition of James Cahill, Wm. O'Brien, 
Timothy O'Connor and a number of others 
was presented tn the su])erintendent for the 
formation of a school district embracing the 
central-northern part of Walton township. 
This petition seems to have been acted upon, 
and the district formed in June, 1870. There 
is no record giving anything definite as to its 
formation farther than is here stated. No- 
vember 10, 1 87 1, on the application of Wm. 

M .Rogers, the first election was called for this 


Miss Ida Stevenson taught the first school 
in the district, in the fall of 1870, in a small 
claim building belonging to J. O. Stotts. 
There is no record showing wdien the district 
was organized, but it was probably early in 
1870. The record shows the board in 1870, 
which must have been the first board, consisted 

of Ames, director; O. F. Presson, clerk; 

and George McDole, treasurer. The first pub- 
lic school was taught by Mrs. H. A.. Bole- 
man, in one of the rooms of her dwelling, 
commencing in the fall of 1871 : she taught 
several terms in succession there. The district 
is located in the northeastern part of Mound 
Valley township. 


Is situated in the northwestern corner of La- 
bette township. We have no record of its 
formation or work prior to 1872, when Alfred 
H. Lee, E. D. Graybill and John B. Daniels 
were reported as the board. 

m'clintock (or trenton) district, no. 67, 
Was organized December 15, 1870, and em- 
liraced the southeast corner of Howard town- 
ship. The first meeting in the district was in 
the house of E. B. Baldwin, on April 8, 1871, 
at which the following officers' were elected: 
\\'. J. McClintock, director; E. B. Baldwin, 
clerk; Benjamin Wade or J. M. Hart, treas- 
urer. This was the first district organized in 
Howard township. The first school in the dis- 
trict was taught by J. M. Hart, in a little cabin 
on his place, in the fall and winter of 1871. 
This was a subscription school. In the spring 
of 1872 a new school-house was built, and. 


commencing April 22, 1872, W. J. Millikin 
taught the first pubHc scliool in the district. 


Is located in the western part of ]\Iound Val- 
ley township. C. H. Lesley, E. Stapleton and 
Alexander Moore were interested in the secur- 
ing of its organization, which was effected 
under an order made December 30, 1870. The 
first school-house was built by subscription, out 
of native lumber, and a school taught therein 
by Mrs. Hess, in 1871. That year bonds were 
voted, and the house was remodeled and fixed 
for a winter school, which was held the follow- 
ing winter. After the division of the district 
in 1883, additional bonds were voted, and a 
new school-house was built in 1884. Elisha 
Stapleton,' J. J. Dickens and A. I\Ioore were 
the first officers. 


Was formed January 31. 1871. and embraced 
the southwest corner of Laliette township. The 
first meeting was at the house of Isaac Padget, 
February 20, 1871. In the summer of 1871 
the first school-house was built in the district; 
this was the first school-house in the township. 
The first school in the township was taught in 
this building by Miss Carrie M. Beggs, com- 
mencing the first of December, 1871. An- 
drew J. Heaton, Robert Vance and S. M. Hin- 
sh'aw were the first officers; in the spring of 
1871 John P. Hight, Isaac Padget and S. M. 
Hinshaw were elected. 


Was formed February 8, 1871, and lay in the 
eastern part of Hackberry township and west- 
ern part of Richland. The first meeting was 
held at the house of Isaac Butterworth, in 
February, 1871. The first officers were Samuel 

Cellars, L. H. Reed, and L. H. Lockwood. The 
school-house was built, but not plastered, in 
tlie fall of 1 87 1, and in that winter James 
Dickey taught the first school. A new school- 
house was erected in 1892. 


Was formed May i, 1871. It lay in the south- 
west corner of Fairview and the northwest 
corner of Hackberry. The first meeting was 
held at the house of G. W. Williams, and the 
following elected as the board : James Newell, 
director; Samuel B. Good, clerk; James Pot- 
tenger, treasurer. The first school was taught 
in a building belonging to James McCoy. This 
district has had two sdiool-houses ; one was 
built in the early " 'seventies," and it was re- 
placed by a new house late in the " "nineties." 


Was formed May 3, 1871. It lies in the cen- 
tral-eastern part of Elm Grove township. The 
first meeting was held at the house of Henry 
Pitman, on May 15, 1871. L. Edmondson. 
D. S. Robbins and C. were the first offi- 


An order was made May 3, 1871, for the 
formation of District No. "j},, lying in the cen- 
tral part of Elm Grove township, and an elec- 
tion called for May 15, 1871, at the house of 
Owen \\'immer. The district failed to organ- 
ize under this order, and on May 30, 1872, a 
new order was made for the organization of 
the district, and the first election called for 
May 30, 1872, at the house of P. C. Good- 
win. The building in the district was erected 
in the fall of 1872, and completed the fore part 
of December. It was completed on Monday, 
and on Tuesday W. J. Millikin opened therein 



the first school in the district. The building 
stood in the southeast corner of the northwest 
quarter of section 30, township 34, range 19, 
and when the railroad was laid out the pro- 
jected line ran directly through the building. 
It was then sold to Thomas Bickman, and 
moved a little to the north and used as a Free 
Methodist church. In the fall of 1886 a new 
four-room school-house was erected and fur- 
nished, at a cost of $2,000. Since then the 
principals of the school have been: 1887-89, 
A. R. Bell; 1889-90, A. D. Martin; 1890-92, 
M. N. Baldwin; 1892-94, C. C. Robbins; 1894- 
96, A. J. Lovett; 1896-98, H. W. Todd; 1898- 
99, S. O. King; 1899-1900, L. Lightfoot; 
1900-01, J. F. Johnson. 


Embraced a tract of land lying north and west 
of Oswego, extending from the Neosho river 
to the west side of the township, and was or- 
ganized i\Iay 8, 1 87 1, on a petition dated April 
14, 187 1, signed by J. H. Holt, R. P. Bagby, 
Elisha Hammer, A. C. Baker, and others. The 
first election, was held May 19, 1871. This 
district has undergone many changes since its 
organization. After the organization of the 
district, the school was taught for some time 
in the old college Imilding. After that was 
torn duwn and removed a new school-house 
was built. 


Is located in tlie central and northern part of 
Mnnnd \'allev township, and was, on the pe- 
tition of Josephus Moore, Seth Wells, R. W. 
Simpson, and others, organized by order dated 
May 12. 1S71. The first meeting was held 
May 25, 1871. The first school officers were 
S. W. Slocnm. W'm. Robbins, and Henry Ter- 
williger. 'i"hc school-house was built in the 

summer of 1871. The following winter a 
three-months" school was taught by IMr. Jones, 
at a salary of $25 per month. 


This district is situated in the central and 
western part of Osage township. I have not 
been able to find any record giving an account 
of its formation, nor have I found any of the 
old settlers who can give such information. 
But the order f(.)r its formation was evidently 
made in 1871. It is said that the first teacher 
in the district was ]\Iiss Sadie Chambers. This 
has been one of the most enterprising districts 
in the county, and the school has always stood 


On July 2-/, 1 871, George W. Blake, J. A. 
Jamison, P. Stevenson, and a great many others 
petitioned for a district in the southeast part 
of Osage township, on which the superintend- 
ent made an order October 20, 1871, forming 
it into District No. "/-j, and appointing the 
first school meeting to be held at the house of 
J. L. Hills. The first officers consisted of J. 
T. Hills, director; George \\'. Blake, clerk; P. 
Stevenson, treasurer. 


Lies in the western part of jNIount Pleasant 
township and eastern part of Canada, and was 
organized on an order made October 20, 1871. 
The first meeting was held at the house of 
S. Briner, November 19, 1871. W. H. Steel 
was elected director; D. S. Jackson, treasurer; 
W. H. IMapes. clerk. The first school-house 
was built by subscription, and in this the day 
and Sunday-schools were held until the erection 
of the new house. 




This district is situated in tiie northwest 
part of Osage township, and was organized in 
1870, on the petition of Wm. Padget and 
others. The first school was taught by Miss 
Maxwell; Maggie Adams and Edna Blake 
were early teachers. The first officers were 
David Lensy, Paulus Eisley, and A. H. Lock- 


^^'as formed January 3, 1872, on petition of 
J. T. Waller, John Elston, J. O. King, Thomas 
D. Bickham and others, on December 19, 1870, 
in the corners of Fairview, Liberty, Labette 
and Mount Pleasant townships. The first 
meeting was held January 20, 1872, at the 
house of M. \". B. Watson. The following 
officers were elected : Silas Prayther, director ; 
M. \'. B. Watson, clerk; J. O. King, treasurer. 


On June 10, 1872. an order was made for 
the organization of District No. 81, in the 
northwest corner of the county, on the request 
of J. B. Quinn. It seems that this territory 
was thereafter formed into a union district, 
and on March 18, 1875. a new district with 
this same number was organized, in the south- 
east corner of Walton township. The first 
meeting was held April 24, 1875. 


Originally embraced three miles square in the 
northeast corner of Labette township, and was 
formed January lo, 1872. The first meet- 
ing was held at the house of John M. Cald- 
well, January 5, 1872, at which the follow- 
ing officers were elected : L. A. Wood, di- 
rector ; John M. Caldwell, clerk ; James Martin, 

treasurer. Miss Carrie M. Beggs taught the 
first school, in a private claim house. School- 
house completed in 1872. 

NO. 83. 

On January i, 1872, E. M. Reeder and a 
number of others petitioned for a district in 
the central and western part of Labette town- 
ship. On ]\Iay 15, 1872, an order for its for- 
mation was made, and the first meeting called 
for May 30, at the house of William Collins. 
In the summer Miss Carrie M. Beggs taught 
the first school in a claim house. School-house 
built in 1872. 


This district was formed in the northwest 
part of Canada township, on an order made 
March 5, 1872. The first election was held at 
the house of J. Herrington, March 28, 1872, 
Otho Wilson taught the first school. Bonds 
in the sum of $1,000 were issued, and a house 
was built in the fall. Alexander Duncan taught 
the first school therein. The first board was 
composed of J. J. Higgins, Alexander Duncan, 
and James Sweet. 


On March 26, 1872, Christian Lieb and 
a number of others petitioned for the forma- 
tion of a district in the southeast of Canada 
and northeast part of Howard townships, and 
on May 15th an order was made for its forma- 
tion. The first election was called for May 
30th. at the bouse of Christian Lieb. This 
school-house was built in the summer of 1872, 
and that winter J. K. Russell taught the first 
school therein. The first board consisted of 
Christian Lieb, John D. Vance, and Jonathan 




Was formed June 3, 1872, in the territory ad- 
joining Chetopa on the north. The first meet- 
ing- was held in the house of J. C. Wright, 
June 14, 1872, at which the following officers 
were elected : J. C. Wright, director ; L. D. 
Bovee, clerk ; J. B. Sartain, treasurer. A house 
was built that ye^r. 


Is situated in the southwest corner of Hack- 
berry township. The record of its organiza- 
tion and early history is all a blank. A house 
costinp^ $600 is said to have been built in 1872 ; 
and the first officers are said to have been 
William Liggett, director; W. B. Trissol, 
clerk; A. J. Barnes, treasurer. 


^\'as formed in the northern part of Mound 
Valley township, May 3, 1873. The first meet- 
ing was held July 30, 1873. Samuel May- 
ginnis, J. D. Ellison and J. F. Butts were the 
first school officers. The first school was taught 
by J. F. Finley, in a house belonging to J. F. 
Butts, in 1873. The school-house in the dis- 
trict was built in 1874, 


In 1872 a large petition was presented for 
the formation of a district in the southeast 
corner of Mount Pleasant township. There is 
no record of the formation thereof until the 
spring of 1873. The first meeting was held 
and the officers elected May 2~, 1873. 


Was organized in the northwest corner of Elm 
Grove township, April 26, 1873. The first 
meeting was held June 5. 1873. 


Was formed in the west part of Mount Pleas- 
ant township, December 31, 1873. The first 
meeting was held January 31, 1874. 


Is located in the southwest corner of Elm 
Grove township, and was organized January 
29. 1874. The first meeting was held ]\Iarch 3, 


Was formed in the northwestern part of Osage 
township, April 4, 1874. The first meeting 
was held May 23, 1874. 


Was formed in the northern part of Canada 
township, June i8, 1874. The first meeting 
was held August i, 1874. A school-house was 
built in the district in the fall of 1874. The 
first school in the district was taught by Rich- 
ard McKenzie. 


April 15, 1872, W. H. ^Mapes and others 
petitioned for the formation of'a district in the 
southwest corner of Mount Pleasant township. 
It does not appear to have been organized prior 
to June 18, 1874, when the order therefor was 
made and the organization completed, August 
I, 1874. The first school meeting was held 
at the residence of Noah Guyman. John Hulse 
was elected director and Milo Hildreth, clerk. 
The first school was taught in the summer of 
1874, by Mrs. Mary Owens, in a house belong- 
ing to ^Ir. Decker, with an average attendance 
of less than 4 scholars. School was held in 
rented buildings until the fall of 1878, when 



a new school-house was erected, the first school 
in which was taught by Mrs. Eliza Rust. 


Is a joint district, situated near the north- 
west corner of the county, in connection with 
territory in Montgomery county. It was or- 
ganized in 1872, or at least steps were taken 
as early as that to secure an organization, and 
a house was built very soon after its organi- 
zation. The first board consisted of W. T. 
Fallon, director; J. T. Finley, clerk; J. W". 
Phebus, treasurer. The first school was taught 
by John Stroud. 

m'kenna district, no. 97, 

Was formed in the northwestern part of How- 
ard township, March ii, 1873. The first 
meeting was held April 10, 1873. The school- 
house in this district was first built on the west 
side of Pumpkin creek, and was thereafter re- 
moved to the east side of the creek. 

BAYLOR district, NO. 98, 

Located in the southeastern part of Hackberry 
township, was formed March 12, 1873. The 
first meeting was held April 15, 1873. 

BELL mound district,^ no. 99, 

Was formed in the southeastern part of Mound 
Valley township, March 14, 1873. The first 
meeting was held April 11, 1873. The first 
officers were Cyrus Hopkins, M. F. Wakefield, 
and Ira Ross. In December, 1873, Herman 
Wade opened the first school. Colin Hodge 
was treasurer of this district for a number of 

piety hill district, no. 100. 
Was formed in the southeastern part of Rich- 
land township, April 15, 1873. The first meet- 

ing was held May 22, 1875. That fall a school- 
house costing $900 was erected. 

woodruff (or mill valley) district, 

NO. lOI. 

Notices of formation of this district were 
posted October 8, 1880. Officers were elect- 
ed and organization completed November 8. 
1880. This district is situated in the western 
part of Oswego township. 

maple grove district, no. 102, 

Was organized July 16, 1881. in the north- 
western part of Osage township. The first 
meeting was held at the home of M. E. Sparks, 
July 16, 1881. 


Is situated in the southern part of Richland 
township, and was organized July 28, 1881. 
The first meeting was held at the house of 
Wm. Cook, July 28, 1881. Daniel Corell, E. 
C. Albrook and a number of other parties pe- 
titioned for the formation of this district. The 
order is dated June 18, 1881. 

M. K. & T. DISTRICT, NO. IO4, 

Is located in the northwestern part of North 
township, and was organized June lo, 1882. 
The first meeting was held at the house of S. 
E. Cornelius, June 10, 1882. 


Is located in the eastern part of Mound Valley 
township, and was organized December 8, 
1S83. The first meeting was held at the house 
of R. Terhune, December 8, 1883. The first 
school officers were A. B. Gibs, H. K. Baker, 
and T- C. Lesley. A school-house was built in 
1884, and the first school was taught there in 
the winter of 1884, by Miss Lina Gibs. 



is situated in the northern part of Labette 
township; was organized February i6, 1884. 
The first meeting was held at the house of 
Robert X. Davis, January 11, 1884. 


Is located in the northwestern corner of Osage 
township, and is a joint district. 


Located in the western part of Fairview town- 
ship, was organized May 6, 1884. The first 
meeting was held at the house of F. il. Poe, 
May 16, 1884. 


Located in the south-central part of Elm Grove 
township, was organized April 30, 1884. The 
first meeting was held April 30, 1884. 


Is situated in the central part of Hackberry 
township, including the town of Bartlett, and 
was organized June 3, 1889. The school- 
house was built that fall, and in it, commenc- 
ing in December, J. L. Edmundson began 
teaching the first school in the district. In 
1897 an addition was built to the school-house, 
since which time two teachers have been em- 
ployed, viz. : 1896-97, H. A. Brundage and 
dauHiter; 1897-98, Ada Edmandson and 
Maud Ball; 1898-99, Bertha Reece and Alta 
Campbell; 1899-1900, Bertha Reece and Min- 
nie Pickering; 1900-01, Margaret Curtis and 
Josephine Crane. 


On Februarv 27, 1892, J. A. Jarboe and 
William Scott applied for the formation of a 

new district, and on March ist the order was 
made for the formation of a district embrac- 
ing territory in Walton and Osage townships. 
An appeal having been taken from the action 
of the county superintendent, it was not until 
July 8th that the hearing was had before the 
commissioners, when the action of the super- 
intendent was sustained. The first election was 
held July i8th, at which the following offi- 
cers were elected: William Turner, director; 
William Scott, clerk; J. A. Jarboe, treasurer. 
Bonds were soon issued, and a new school- 
house costing $500 was erected on the south- 
east corner of section 13, in Osage township, 
in which, on October loth, the first school was 
opened by Lillie Willi. 


Is located in Labette and Montgomery coun- 
ties ; that located in Labette county is in How- 
ard and Canada townships. The organiza- 
tion was effected August 7. 1900, and the first 

I meeting was held August 23, 1900. A new 
school-house was built at once and a school 

! taught the following winter. 


Prior to 1889 no attempt had been made 
toward securing uniformity in the course of 
study and standard of scholarship in the vari- 
ous country schools. At the request of the 
county superintendent, the county commis- 
sioners made an order on July 3, 1889, author- 
izing a set of \A'elch's Classification Records 
for the use of each school district in the coun- 
ty, together with proper blanks for making 
reports, etc. A circular letter was sent out 
by the county superintendent to each of the 
teachers, giving information in reference to 
the examinations that would be required for 



promotion and graduation. Xearly all the 
schools in the county adopted the prescribed 
course of study and made preparations for their 
students to take part in the examinations that 
should thereafter be held. The first examina- 
tion under this arrangement was lield on April 
18, 1890, at a designated place in each town- 
ship, where schools in such township could be 
represented. Ninety-nine applicants were ex- 
amined, 34 of whom (5 boys and 29 girls) 
attained the required average, and passed. 
Commencement exercises were held during the 
early part of June at several places in the coun- 
ty, and on July ist the final commencement for 
all of those who had passed the examination 
was held at the opera house in Oswego. This 
work has been continued each year since, with 
very gratifying results. The graduates thus 
far have been as follows : 




















Year. Boys. Gi 

1890 5 - 

1891 16 ■ 

1892 2^ 

1893 I-' 

1894 14 

1895 30 

1896 7 

1897 19 

1898 37 

1899 19 

1900 9 

Totals 191 358 


The first teachers' institute in Labette coun- 
ty was held in Oswego. June 1-4. 1869. It 
was called and conducted by R. J. Elliott, coun- 
ty superintendent, with the assistance of the 
teachers of the county. Peter McVicar, state 
superintendent of public instruction, was pres- 


ent one day, and lecturefl in the evening. 
On November 9-12, of the same year, a sec- 
ond session was held, at Chetooa, under the 
same general direction, with an attendance of 
24 teachers. On July 12, 1870, the next session 
was held in Chetopa, under the charge of the 
superintendent. Prof. B. F. Mudge was pres- 
ent at this institute, and rendered valuable as- 
sistance. The next session was held in Os- 
wego, commencing June 12, 1871, with Colonel 
J. W. Horner in charge and 28 teachers in at- 
tendance. General Eraser, state superintend- 
ent, visited this institute, and lectured. Two 
sessions of the institute were held in 1872, the 
first at Oswego, commencing February ■•;th, 
with 35 teachers in attendance: the second at 
Chetopa commencing November 25th. At 
the close of this latter session, on November 
28th, a county teachers' association was 
formed. In January, 1873, Miss Alary A. 
Higbv came into office as county superintend- 
ent, and continued to hold the position for six 
years. Under her superintendency the insti- 
tutes were even more successful than they had 
formerly been. One session each year was 
held at Oswego during the first four years of 
her administration, viz., 1873-76, all of which 
were well attended and gave good satisfaction. 


In the winter of 1877 the Legislature pro- 
vided for a four-weeks session, with paid in- 
structors, and a charge to those who attended. 
Previous to this the institutes had been only 
from two to five or six days: the instruction 
had been free, generally given by the county 
superintendent and some of the leading teach- 
ers of the county. On August 6, 1877, the 
first institute under this law opened in Os- 
wego, with Prof. J. B. Holbrook as conductor. 



and over loo teachers in attendance. The most 
satisfactory results were attained. This insti- 
tute went far toward popularizing the idea of 
a long institute under paid instructors. With 
the exception of two years, all of the normal 
institutes, commencing with 1877, have been 
held in Oswego. Those for 1880 and 1892 
were held at Parsons. Up to 1885 the attend- 
ance at the institute ranged from about 100 
to 135. Since that time, with possibly one 
exception, the attendance has been consider- 
ably larger, reaching 200 in 1891 and 302 in 
1892; the latter being, it is said, the largest 
normal institute ever held in the State. The 
institutes have been under the charge of a 
conductor, with usually two and sometimes 
more assistant instructors. The following is 
a list of the conductors: 1877-78, J. B. Hol- 
brook; 1879-80, L. M. Knowles; 1881, Buel 
T. Davis ; 1882. Lee Tomlin ; 1883, J. N. Ross ; 

884, Lee Tomlin; 1885-86, J. W. Weltner; 

887. D. E. Sanders: 1888, J. N. E. Monroe; 

889, C. H. Harris; 1890, T. W. Conway; 

891, C. H. Harris: 1892, J. W. Weltner; 

893-94, Guy P. Benton; 1895-96. S. D. 
Frazier; 1897, Arvin S. Olin; 1898, H. Win- 
sor; 1899, E. :M. \\'ood: 1900, S. D. Frazier. 


No formal organization of the teachers of 
the county was had prior to 1872, although 
teachers' institutes had been held since 1869. 
On November 28, 1872, the teachers' insti- 
tute having just closed, the teachers who had 
been in attendance came together and organ- 
ized a county teachers' association. Miss Mary 
A. Higby, who had just been elected county 
superintendent, was elected its first president. 
and Mrs. E. Williams, secretary. An asso- 
ciation has been maintained most of the time 

since then, a part of the time in a very efficient 
condition, but sometimes indications of life 
were scarcely discernible. The meetings have 
been sometimes quarterly, and sometimes not 
so frequently. Nearly all parts of the county 
have been favored with these meetings, and 
they have done much toward unifying the 
work in the county and maintaining a sympa- 
thy between the teachers and the patrons of the 


A number of parties at one time or another 
have started private schools in various parts 
of the county, some of which have run for 
quite a length of time, and others have been 
short-lived. At the close of Miss Mary A. 
Higby's term as county superintendent she 
conducted a private school for a number of 
months. Subsequently Mrs. J. R. Boulter 
taught a private school for quite a length of 
time. C. C. Robins started a school in Os- 
wego, but only conducted it a short time, be- 
cause of its not being sufficiently attended to 
justify its continuance. B. R. Cunningham 
as well as other parties in Chetopa conducted 
classes for a greater or less length of time. 
Several similar enterprises have also been had 
at Parsons. In 1884 Lyman N. Judd opened 
an institute at Altamont, but failing to get a 
sufficient amount of patronage removed it to 
Oswego, but here, too. he met with less suc- 
cess than he had hoped, and after a short time 
abandoned it. 


On September 15. 1892, a private school 
was opened in one of the rooms of the public 
school building in Altamont by T. B. Hanna, 
who had been secured by the county superin- 



tendent to make the experiment, with the hope 
tliat it would develop into a county high school 
under the provisions of the general law. The 
school continued during the year and was 
measurably successful, reaching a total enroll- 
ment of 64 pupils. Mrs. Lucy Best, the coun- 
ty superintendent, not being of the opinion 
that a proposition to establish a county high 
school could be carried, if submitted to a pop- 
ular vote, as required by the general law, se- 
cured the passage of a private act by the Legis- 
lature, in 1893, establishing a high school at 
Altamont. When this action became generally 
known, it was strongly condemned in many 
parts of the county, and the opposition to the 
carrying out of the project was very decided, 
and came from a large proportion of the people. 
However, as required by the act, the county 
commissioners at their April ( 1893) session, 
appointed a board of six trustees, to prepare 
for and open the school, selecting two from 
each commissioner's district, viz. : Nelson Case 
and J. E. Van Sant, of Oswego, from the first 
district; \V. A. Huff, of Altamont, and Ben- 
jamin Johnson, of Mound Valley, from the 
second district; William Scott, of Dennis, and 
J. M. Birt, of Parsons, from the third dis- 
trict. Soon after their appointment, this 
board met and organized and decided to open 
the school the following September. The board 
at the proper time made a tax levy for the 
purpose of erecting a building and of paying 
for the running expenses of the school. A 
suit was thereupon brought by those who 
were opposing the establishment of the school, 
to -enjoin the collection of this tax, and there- 
by to test the validity of the law establishing 
the school. The defense of this case was con- 
ducted by Nelson Case, assisted by W. B. 
Glasse, who were employed by the friends of 
the school. At the conclusion of the trial in 

the district court, a judgment was rendered 
for the defendants, dissolving the temporary 
injunction. The case was carried on an error 
to the supreme court, where the judgment of 
the district court was affirmed. 

■ Notwithstanding the fact that the injunc- 
tion proceedings had prevented the raising of 
any revenue the first year, the teachers em- 
ployed proceeded with their work, with no as- 
surance of receiving any compensation other 
than the faith they and their friends had in 
the successful outcome of the litigation in favor 
of the school. All understood that if the law 
was held valid, the school would go on and the 
teachers would be paid ; but, on the other hand, 
if the courts held the law invalid, the school 
would fail and the teachers would have given 
a year's work without compensation. Rooms 
were rented in Altamont and the school was 
opened with appropriate ceremonies September 
4, 1893. Addresses were made by Nelson 
Case. Mrs. Lucy Best and some others. On 
the following day the work of the school was 
put into practical operation, with an enroll- 
ment at the opening of 84 students. During 
the year the attendance reached 147. The 
validity of the law establishing the school hav- 
ing then been declared by the highest court, 
the trustees proceeded with the erection of the 
building. The structure was commenced in 
the fall of 1894 and was completed the fol- 
lowing spring. The dedicatory address was 
delivered by Nelson Case May 4, 1895. The 
entire cost of the building, furnishings, and 
improving of the ground was as follows : 

Building proper $18,221 50 

Architect 720 00 

Heating apparatus ' 2,000 00 

Blackboards 403 97 

Furniture 1,378 68 



Piano . . 



5. walks anc 
on grounds 


...$ 35000 


730 95 

The Friends' Yearly fleeting of Iowa hav- 

Total cost of the plant $23,805 10 

The faculty has consisted of four teachers 
until the present year; five are now employed. 
T. B. Hanna was principal the first five years ; 
since then \Y. M. Kyser has been principal. 
The enrollment for the seven years has been 
as follows: 146, 176, 178, 151, 179. 183, 
146. The first graduating class went out in 
1896, and the several graduating classes have 
been as follows: 1896, boys 8, girls 11, total 
19; 1897, boys 7, girls 13. total 20; 1898, boys 
9, girls 17, total 26; 1899, boys 9, girls 27, 
total 36; 1900, boys 16. girls 17, total 33; 
whole numljer of graduates, boys 49, girls 85, 
total 134. 


Herewith is shown a condensed table giving 
the graduates of the common and high schools 
of the county : 

ing decided to establish a school for colored 
children, a committee by them appointed to 
locate the same decided upon its location at 
Parsons, and on March 23. 1882, the school 
was opened. The basis of the fund for start- 
ing this school was $1,000, from a legacy left 
by Mr. Hobson to be used for the benefit of 
colored people, and in his honor the school was 
named Hobson Normal Institute. Prof. D. 
W. Boles had charge of the school from its 
organization until his death. July 8, 1890. since 
which time during the remaining life of the 
institution A. W. Hadley was principal. Both 
Messrs. Boles and Hadley were assisted by 
their wives, and also scholars in the higher 
grades taught some. The institute had a fine 
two-story frame building on the corner of 
Gandy avenue and Twenty-fourth street. It 
was furnished with maps, charts, reference 
books, and other material adapted to the in- 
struction in the common branches and the 
natural sciences. A score or more graduated 
from the teachers' advanced course, and a 




larger number completed the teachers' ele- 
mentary course. Many of these themselves be- 
came teachers in schools at other points. How- 
ever, the parties having charge of this institu- 
tion, after an experience of a few years, found 
the patronage was not sufificient to justify its 
continuance. When the Home for the Friend- 
less was started in 1896, the building which 
















































































































had been erected for this school was sold to 

isaa, -i 

the Home, and Hobson Normal Inst:tute ceased 
to exist. 


.. .. 



8 11 



This institution is located at Parsons and 


is under the control of the CathoHc church. 
From 1890 to 1896 the Sisters of Loretta had 
charge of it. with Mother Mary Bernard, prin- 
cipal. Since then it 'has been under the care of 

the Sisters of Charity. ■": ' ' 


The first private school of a high grade es- 
tablished in the county was planned and 
inaugurated by Re\'. R. P. Bukey, under the 
above designation. It was located on the 
southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of 
section 17, township ^^. range 21, a little 
northwest of the city of Oswego. In the sum- 
mer of 1870 Mr. Bukey erected a very nice-ap- 
pearing two-story frame building, 20x36 feet, 
which contained two good school-rooms. Un- 
der his employment ]\Iiss ^Nlary E. Claypool 
opened the school the first week in Septem- 
ber. 1870. She remained in charge of the 
school until the close of the school year 
the following June, and was the only teacher 
till the close of December. After the school 
opened the attendance was so good and the 
prospects were so flattering that Mr. Bukey 
planned to largely increase its capacity and to 
provide for the boarding of those who came 
from a distance. He secured the cooperation 
of John D. Gillette, who was a man of some 
means, and during the fall and winter of 1870 
erected a two-story 20 by 26 feet frame ad- 
dition, and also a kitchen and accompanying 
rooms, which were ready for occupancy in Jan- 
uary, 1 87 1. The teaching force was increased 
by securing Prof. Allen C. Baker as teacher 
of mathematics. Rev. J. H. Leard was also 
elected president of the college, but his rela- 
tion to it was only nominal that year. The 
following year the faculty consisted of Rev. 
J. H. Leard, president; Prof. A. C. Baker, 

teacher of mathematics: Miss P. D. Bullock, 
teacher of languages ; ]\Iiss Ella School teach- 
er of music. Judge S. P. Moore was also an- 
nounced as teacher of commercial law, but 
nothing was ever done in his department. 
There were several boarding students. Neither 
of the owners had any practical knowledge of 
school matters, nor was the president able to 
add any strength to the school. The college 
opened with very bright prospects, and its first 
year's history gave promise of its becoming a 
]5ermanent and flourishing school. Nothing 
but the inability on the part of these in control 
to comprehend and provide for its wants pre- 
vented its success. After the second year the 
school hardly had an existence. The original 
building was purchased by ]\Irs. Bettis, who 
removed it to town and transformed it into a 
residence. The additirn was also brought to 
town, and out of the material a store was con- 


At a meeting of the Neosho Presbytery, 
held at Garnett, Kansas, October 3. 1882, a 
resolution was adopted looking to the estab- 
lishment of a college within the biumds of the 
presbytery, and a committee was appointed to 
report thereon. The committee having re- 
ported favorably, Rev. Austin Warner was ap- 
pointed a committee to lay the matter before 
the synod, which he did at its October meeting 
at Ottawa, 1882 ; and on October 6th, upon the 
report of the committee, the synod authorized 
the presbvtery to proceed with the establish- 
ment of a school as by them proposed. The 
next day, at a called meeting of the presbytery, 
a committee of five was appointed to take 
into consideration the matter of the establish- 


ment of sucli school. A special meeting of the 
presbytery was called, to be held at Oswego. 
May 8. 1883, at which it was voted to estab- 
lish the school at Oswego, and the following 
\vere elected as a board of trustees, viz. : Rev. 
C. H. McCreery, Rev. D. M. Moore, Rev. W. 
C. Porter, Rev. A. Warner. Rev. John Elliott. 
B. W. Perkins. C. M. Condon, C. O. Perkins, 
and Porter Sawyer. Of this board of trustees, 
B. ^^^ Perkins was elected president. Rev. 
John Elliott, secretary, and C. M. Condon, 
treasurer. A few changes were subsequently 
made in the board. Rev. \\'. S. Davis was 
elected to fill the vacancy caused by the removal 
of Mr. Moore, and upon his removal from the 
State, E. P. Allen was elected to fill the va- 
cancy. C. O. Perkins having died, on October 
4, 1887, Nelson Case was elected to fill vacancy 
caused by such death. 

On December 2^. 1883, the college was in- 
corporated, a charter therefor having on that 
day been filed in the office of the secretary 
of state. On October 4, 1884, on the request 
of the presbytery therefor, the Synod of Kan- 
sas took the college under its jurisdiction. 

In the fall of 1885 the citizens of Oswego 
purchased the N. \\'. '4 of S. W. >4 of N. E. 
■4 of S. 21, T. 33, R. 21, and presented it to 
the college as a site for the school. This prop- 
erty was at the time valued at $17,000. It 
had u])on it a large brick residence, which was 
considered one of the finest in the county. In 
December, 1885, Miss Louise Paull was elected 
principal of the school, and authorized to se- 
lect other members of the faculty ; and with the 
faculty thus chosen the school was opened in 
the brick residence above referred to, January 
14. 1886. In 1886 C. H. McCreer>' was elect- 
ed (nominally) president of the school, with 
the view of his taking entire charge of its 
financial management, and devoting his time 

to the raising of funds with which to make 
improvements and provide an endowment. His 
emplovment was in no way to affect the con- 
trol of the jM-incipal in the management of the 
school proper. Mr. McCreery had served but 
a few months when family afflictions compelled 
him to resign. Miss Paull continued in charge 
until the close of the spring term, in June, 
1887. Miss Susan H. Johnson was thereupon 
elected principal. In the summer of 1887 a 
large, new frame building was erected upon 
the college grounds, at a cost of about $12,000, 
exclusive of furniture. Miss Johnson contin- 
ued to serve as principal until the spring of 
1893, when Dr. J. F. Hendy was elected pres- 
ident of the college. Dr. Hendy resigned the 
presidency at the close of 1895, and Dr. Will- 
iam Bishop acted as president during the last 
half of the school year. At the opening of 
school, in September, 1896, Dr. M. H. Reasor 
took charge and served as president two years. 
During the school year of 1898-99 the college 
was under the presidency of Miss Delia Proc- 
tor. She was succeeded by Miss Margaret L. 
Hill, who ser\ed one year. At the close of 
the school in 1900. the board of trustees did 
not see their way open to provide a faculty 
for the next year, and the school was closed. 
It is hoped that this suspension is to be but 
temporary, and that the work of the college 
may soon be resumed. 


Among the organizations of a literary char- 
acter which have been formed in the county, 
there has probably been no other that has 
maintained such a permanent existence and 
done as much good work as have the se\'eral 
branches of the Chautauqua Literary and Sci- 


entic Circle whicli have been organized and 
carried on in the county. Small circles were 
organized at Chetopa and Mound Valley, and 
regular work was done by these for two or 
three years, but neither circle awakened as 
much interest as did those of Oswego and Par- 


This was the first C. L. S. C. to be formed 
in the county. It was organized at Oswego, 
September 26, 1878. and was maintained for 
the next ten years. Three of its members 
graduated in the first class in 1882. This cir- 
cle had an average of about 20 pursuing the 
work designated by the general officers. 


This circle was organized at Parsons. April 

28, 1885, with a membership of 12. Its offi- 
cers were as follows: President, W. J. Wirt; 
vice-president, Minnie Merriman ; secretary, E. 
G. Roberts. In October following the circle 
took up the regular course of study, and had 
an enrollment of 35 members; many of its 
members graduated, and for a number of years 
the circle quite regularly attended the Ottawa 


In the summer of 1889 a new circle with 
the above designation was organized, the num- 
ber pursuing the course having become too 
great to do effective work in the Grecian cir- 
cle, as was thought. This new circle had 
nearly as large membership as its parent, the 
Grecian, and has done effective work. 



Before speakng of the railroads that have 
been constructed, it may be interesting to briefly 
consider some of the projects which were 
formed on paper, but which never proceeded far 
enough to materiaHze into a road composed of 
wood and iron. If Labette county had suc- 
ceeded in securing a large number of miles of 
railroad within her limits, it has only been after 
repeated efforts and many failures. I shall not 
attempt to speak of all the projects that have 
been instituted for bringing roads to this coun- 
ty, but will mention a few on which some work 
of a preliminary character was done. 

o. FT. s. & s. R. R. 

On December 19, 1868. J. F. Newlon and 
other citizens of the county obtained a charter 
for the Oswego. Fort Scott & Sedalia Railroad 
Company, the purpose of which was to secure 
the building of a road from Sedalia to Oswe- 
go. So far as I know, this was the first rail- 
road charter obtained by our people. The sub- 
sequent building of such a line of road to Par- 
sons shows that this first attempt on the part 
of our citizens was not without some basis on 
which to rest. 

O. p. & E. p. RV. 

On June 30, 1870, a charter was obtained 
by R. W. Wright, C. H. Bent, and others, for 
the construction of the Oswego, Parker & El 
Paso Railway. The intention was to secure a 

road from the northeast to -Oswego, and thence 
southwest to Parsons and through the Terri- 
tory. A great many public meetings were held 
in the interest of this contemplated road, and 
in the fall of 1870 a preliminary survey was 
made from Cherokee through Oswego to Par- 
ker. All that seemed lacking to secure the 
success of this enterprise was the necessary 
financial aid. 

F. M. & c. R. RY. 

Among the visions of the eccentric Colonel 
Hartshorn was one of a railroad running from 
Florida to the Columbia River through Labette 
county. John Elston, R. D. Hartshorn, and 
others associated with them, procured a char- 
ter on October 27, 1870, for the construction 
of the Florida, Memphis & Columbia River 
Railway. It was some time before the defi- 
nite location of this road through the county 
was agreed upon, and such location was to de- 
pend upon the aid that could be secured, but 
it was finally decided to locate it from Colum- 
bus through Montana and Parsons. During 
1 87 1, a number of townships voted bonds to 
aid in the construction of this road. 

M. & N.-W. RY. 

]\Iy impression is that the ^Memphis & 
Northwestern Railway Company was a reor- 
ganization of the F. k. & C. R. Ry. Co., of 
which I have just spoken, or at any rate, that 



the two were in some way covering the same 
territory. This company chd cjuite an amount 
of work in the winter of 1872-73 on the Hne of 
road from Cohmibus to Parsons. Watson 
Bros. & Co.. of Montana, were the contractors, 
and secured a large amount of grading to be 
done and the abutments to be put in for a 
bridge across the Neosho at that point. This 
was as far as the work went, and the contrac- 
tors lost what they had expended in pushing 
it thus far. 

s. FT. & s. F. RY. 

Among the many efforts to secure a road 
from Sedalia or some other point to the north- 
east of this county, was one by the town of 
Labette, soon after its location, in 1870. The 
Sedalia, Fort Scott & Santa Fe Railway Com- 
pany was organized, and in September, 1870, 
a preliminary survey was made from Fort 
Scott to Labette. Arriving at the latter place, 
the surveying party received a warm welcome, 
and were feasted at the principal hotel. 

p. & S. F. RV. 

Parsons was never content with her rail- 
road facilities. There are few points in any 
of the adjoining counties to which she has not 
at some time had a projected railroad. In 1872 
the proposition was to build a road southwest 
to Independence, and a very large amount of 
the paper work was done to secure it, and 
some propositions for municipal aid were voted 

p. & M. RY. 

The preliminary work for this road was 
legaly done in 1876. It was to run southeast 
from Parsons through Montana. 

c. o. & w. RY. 
In 1883 a company was organized to build 

a road from Oswego through the county in a 
southwesterly direction, and thence on west. 
Some municipal aid was voted to this road, 
but not enough to secure its construction. 

S. C. & S. E. RY. 

In 1886 the Salina, Colorado & Southeast- 
ern Railway Company was organized, with a 
view of running a road through Parsons, Mon- 
tana and Columbus, extended from these points 
both northwest and southeast. A right-of-way 
was secured, and some grading was done. 
Municipal aid was \-oted along the line to quite 
an extent. 

chetopa's projects. 

Chetopa was scarcely behind Oswego in 
her efforts to secure railroad advantages. At 
a very early day steps were taken by her citi- 
zens to induce the building of a road from 
some point on the Kansas City & Gulf Rail- 
way so as to give her an outlet to Kansas City 
and northeastern points. Representatives of 
Mr. Joy visited Chetopa, and delegates from 
that place went to Kansas City, and negotia- 
tions were conducted for a long time. Pos- 
sibly we may say the building of the Minden 
branch was a realization of these anticipations. 
Chetopa also made an effort to secure the At- 
lantic & Pacific, and has always had in view 
railroad connections with Baxter Springs and 
the east. 


From these ineffectual attempts at railroad- 
building, I wish now to turn to those which 
resulted in securing the end sought. From 
the first settlement of the county, two lines of 
road were confidently expected : one from the 
north and the other from the east. What 



course they would pursue on entering the coun- 
ty was only a matter of conjecture. Both Os- 
wego and Chetopa expected these two roads, 
and each took active steps toward securing 
them. While the first efforts of our people 
were made toward securing an eastern outlet, 
the road from the north was the one which 
their efforts seemed tlie most likely to secure 

M. K. & T. RY. 

The Union Pacific, Southern Branch, had 
received a large railroad grant with the view 
of securing its construction down the Neosho 
valley, and it was now in process of building 
from Junction City in a southeasterly direction. 
R. S. Ste\-ens was now the general manager, 
and had under himi a corps of enthusiastic 
lieutenants. Tiie chief, with one or more of 
his aides, was early on the field to see what 
could be secured from the municipalities of this 
county through which it was proposed to con- 
struct the road. Their expectations of aid 
were very large. There were no bounds to 
the promises they were ready to make as to 
what the road would do for the various com- 
munities through which it was to be built, and 
the demands made of these communities were 
proportionate to the benefits promised. It 
seemed improbable to secure county bonds, nor 
was there much hope of obtaining* aid from 
any township which did not have within it a 
town of some importance. The railroad offi- 
cers had finally to look to Oswego and Cheto- 
pa, and the townships in which they were sit- 
uated, as the chief if not the only points in 
this county from which they could expect to 
receive any aid. These places were repeatedly 
visited, and the matter of railroad municipal 
bonds was very largely discussed. Both places 
felt that thev were unable to meet the demands 

which the officers were making upon them. 
Where the railroad officials failed to win 
through the promises of benefits to be derived, 
they were more successful in securing a com- 
pliance with their demands by the disaster 
which seemed likely to follow their threatened 
change of route. It being apparent that these 
fnunicipalities were not likely to extend to the 
road the amount of aid which they had de- 
manded, the railroad officials proceeded to 
change the line which had been originally 
designated along the Neosho river, and a sur- 
vey for a new route was made, commencing 
near the north edges of the county and going 
west of the Labette river, and. striking the 
State line several miles west of Chetopa. The 
citizens of Oswego and Chetopa became 
alarmed. It was evident, as they thought, that 
the construction of a road where thus located 
would build up towns on its line which would 
compel the abandonment of the sites occupied 
by them. The result was what the railroad 
officials undoubtedly supposed it would be. 
These towns were now ready to meet all the 
demands the company might make upon them. 
On February 25, 1870, an immense railroad 
meeting was held at Chetopa, which favored 
$100,000 county bonds, and if they could not 
be secured, then township bonds. But one man 
in the town was opposed to the project. About 
this time Messrs. Stevens, Walker, Goss and 
other railroad officials visited Oswego and Che- 
topa, and arrangements were finally entered 
into for the construction of the road at — or, 
as it afterwards proved, near — these places, 
on condition of their issuance of bonds as 
agreed upon. Oswego township, which could 
with her assessed valuation legally issue bonds 
to the amount of perhaps $50,000 or $60,000, 
was called upon and did vote bonds to the 
amount of $100,000 to aid this road; Rich- 



land township gave $50,000, and Chetopa city 
$25,000 for the same purpose. The voting, 
issuance and dehvery of these bonds was se- 
cured to the railroad company by a personal 
obligation entered into between the citizens of 
these two places to see the contract complied 
with. Little opposition was had in ether place 
to the voting of the aid thus agreed upon. Of 
the litigation in respect to these bonds, and the 
compromise entered into for their payment 
which afterward took place, I need not here 
speak. With the aid thus promised and se- 
cured, the building of the road was rapidly 
pushed forward. After reaching the north 
line of the county, 20 miles of road were la'd 
in eleven days, and in one day four miles and 
100 feet were put down. Having reached and 
passed through Oswego and Chetopa, on Mon- 
day, June 6th, the State line was reached, at 
which time appropriate ceremonies were had. 
The last spike on the Kansas line was driven 
by Col. R. S. Stevens, the general manager, 
and the first spike across the line in the In- 
dian Territory by Col. E. C. Boudinot, the 
famous Cherokee who had always favored the 
building of this road. In the evening of June 
6, 1870, the first passenger train which ever en- 
tered Labette county passed over the road in 
charge of John C. Hall, conductor, and David 
Dunham, engineer. The Sedalia branch of this 
Toad was thereafter pushed forward to com- 
pletion as rapidly as could be done, and on 
February 3, 1871. the connecting rail was laid 
uniting it with the Junction City branch at 
Parsons; and on the 5th uf that month the 
first through passenger train from Sedalia to 
Chetopa passed over the road in charge of L. 
S. Hamilton, conductor. 

M.vcHiNE Shops. — It was the general un- 
derstanding, when Parsons was designated as 
the point where the two branches would unite. 

that shops would be located at that place. In 
October, 1871, George W. Chess, contractor, 
broke ground for the roundhouse and machine 
shops, under the supervision of George Thorn- 
ton, civil engineer. In December following, 
Proctor & Pardee, contractors, commenced the 
mason work, and by the close of 1872 the ma- 
chine shops were so far completed as to be 
ready to commence operation, and in May, 
1873, the roundhouse was ready to receive en- 
gines. These shops have been added to from 
time to time, and have been made very com- 
plete in their construction and furnishing. A 
large force is kept constantly at work in the 
various departments, making and repairing the 
rolling stock of the road. 

General Offices. — Theoretically, the 
general offices of the company were at Par- 
sons almost from the first building of the road, 
but, practically, it was not until 1892 that the 
offices were located at that point. During the 
time they were in Parsons, negotiations were 
going on and efforts were being made for an 
evasion of the law requiring the general of- 
fices to be kept within the State. Finally the 
parties most directly interested consented that, 
in consideration of the company's making cer- 
tain additional improvements in Parsons, they 
would not insist on the general offices remain- 
ing with them. When this arrangement was 
effected, the general offices were mo\-ed back 
to St. Louis in 1896. 

New Depot and Office Building. — The 
office room for the company offices located at 
Parsons had become entirely inadequate. To 
meet the needs, a new building was planned, 
and on April i, 1895, work was commenced 
thereon. It was pushed to completion as rap- 
idly as possible. It is a very fine structure, 
furnishing accommodations for the office force 
and a commodious depot. 



Spur Road. — In 1894 a spur was pro- 
jected iin wliicli work was commenced late 
in the fall of that year, starting- from the main 
line at Labette and running in an easterly di- 
rection to Mineral in Cherokee county. This 
was completed in the spring of 1895. Its main 
use is for the transportation of coal from the 
Cherokee county mines to the company's shops 
in Parsons. 

M. K & c. RY. 

The Alemphis, Kansas & Colorado Railway 
Company was organized for the purpose of se- 
curing a road from Cherokee, on the Fort 
Scott & Gulf road, to Parsons, with a view of 
its extension both ways. The company was 
formed early in 1877. Parsons first voted $10,- 
000 to aid this enterprise, and subsequently, 
after a protracted discussion, some favoring 
the project and others opposing making any 
donation, it was voted to take stock to the 
amount of $30,000, the bonds to be delivered 
upon the completion of the road into Parsons. 
Neosho township voted $5,000 in bonds. In 
Afwil. 1878, the track- laying commenced from 
Cherokee west, and on July i, 1878, at 10 
o'clock at night, the first train arrived in Par- 
sons. The officers of Parsons refused to de- 
liver the bonds, on the ground that the road 
was not completed by the time specified in the 
contract. Litigation ensued, which was car- 
ried to the supreme court, where it was finally 
determined that tlie city was not liable and 
the bonds were ne\-er delivered. In February, 
1880, this roatl was sold to the Kansas City, 
Fort Scott & Gulf Railway Company, and 
steps were at once taken to extend it from 
Parsons to Cherryvale. No municipal aid was 
voted along the line, but the people of Cherry- 
vale secured the right-of-way as an inducement 
to its construction. The road thus built from 
Cherokee to Cherry\ale was narrow gauge; 

some two or three years after its completion 
to Cherryvale it was made into a standard- 
gauge road. 

In December, 1885, the Parsons & Pacific 
Railway Company was chartered to build a 
road from Parsons to Cofifeyville. C. H. Kim- 
ball and Lee Clark were the leading spirits in 
the movement, and with the aid of eastern cap- 
italists whom they enlisted in the enterprise 
the road was constructed, in 1886. On Sep- 
tember 20, 1886, the first train ran from 
Mound Valley to Parsons. The company re- 
ceived municipal aid — from Parsons, $40,- 
000; from Mound Valley township, $20,000; 
Canada township, $20,000, and some from 
Montgomery county. 

K. c. & p. RY. 

During the building of the Parsons & Pa- 
cific road to Cofifeyville, a company, in which 
the same parties were interested, was formed 
for the purpose of extending it from Parsons 
north to Kansas City. In aid of this construc- 
tion Parsons voted an additional $20,000, and 
the municipalities in the counties north, 
through which the road ran, extended liberal 
aid. The road was pushed cjuite rapidly along, 
and a connection formed with the Kansas City, 
Fort Scott & Gulf, at Paola. 

As early as 1884 an organization was 
formed of prominent men living along the pro- 
posed line of the Denver, Memphis & Atlantic 
Railroad for the purpose of doing the prelim- 
inary work, of securing the right-of-way, mu- 
nicipal aid, and putting the work in such shape 
that capitalists would be willing to take hold 




^^RL A. 




8 » '553 














of the enterprise and build the road. Most of 
the members of this company Hved at and be- 
tween Larned and Chetopa. Col. J. B. Cook 
was the representative from this county in the 
company. ]\Iaj. Joseph Henson and Col. John 
Doniphan, of St. Joseph, Mo., who had some 
experience in raih'oad matters and were men 
of some capital, were also members of the 
company. Municipal aid was voted in nearly 
every township through which the road was to 
be run. A survey and plat was made, and ne- 
gotiations commenced with Jay Gould for the 
construction of the road. The time in which 
the road was to be built under the conditions 
of the aid first voted having expired before any 
W'Ork was done, a second election 'had to be 
held and the aid voted again. The first plan 
also was to build a narrow-gauge road. In 
changing to a broad gauge the technical re- 
quirements of the law were not observed, and 
legislation had to be secured to cure defects, 
so that it was not until May 22, 1886, that 
the work began at Chetopa extending the road 
west from that point. Quite an amount of 
work had been done, commencing at Larned 
find extending east, prior to that. Two days 
later than this the construction train was put 
on, and by the close of June it was completed 
as far west as Edna. On July 2, 1886, the 
first train arrived in Chetopa from Edna, and 
during the summer Coffeyville WTas reached. 
The following aid was extended to secure the 
construction of this road through this coun- 
ty : A subscription of several hundred dollars 
by the citizens of Chetopa, and municipal aid; 
from Hackberry township, $10,000; from Elm 
Grove township, $20,000; and from Howard 
township, $20,000. 


During the fall and winter of 1885-86 ef- 
forts were nvade bv different citizens of the 

county to secure the extension of the road from 
Nevada, Mo., in a southwesterly direction, but 
it was finally determined to build it to Clie- 
topa; that place securing for it the right-of- 
way for about 20 miles and giving it 30 acres 
of ground in the city for depot and yard pur- 
poses. During the spring the work on it was 
rapidly pushed forward, and on April 6, 1886, 
the first train over this branch arrived in Che- 

L. L. & G. R. R. 

It was at first expected that this line of 
road would run through the western part of 
the county its entire width from north to south, 
but on the organization of Montgomery coun- 
ty it was proposed to change the route, and 
that county voting liberal aid, the proposed 
location was changed so that the road only 
crosses the northwestern corner of this county 
a short distance and then enters Montgomery. 

To secure connection with St. Louis was 
among the first things that the citizens of Os- 
wego desired after the town was fairly started. 
The first effort in this direction of which I 
have any knowledge was the organization of 
a local company known as the Oswego, Car- 
thage, Mount Vernon & Springfield Railway 
Company, for which R. W. Wright and others 
secured a charter January 27, 1869. On De- 
cember 9, 1870, the Oswego Register pub- 
lished an account of the proposed extension of 
the Southern Pacific Railway from Springfield 
to Wichita. About that time delegates from 
Oswego attended meetings at Carthage and 
Columbus, at which the project was talked up. 
On Ma}^ 21, 1870, on the petition of quite 
a number of citizens, the board of county com- 
missioners' made an order submitting to the 


voters of tlie cnunty a proposition to issue 
county 1x)nds in tlie sum of $150,000 to the 
Southern Kansas Railway Company on con- 
dition of its building- a road through the coun- 
ty-seat, and west as near the center of the coun- 
ty as practicable. This left out important 
points in the county through which the road 
could not pass, and before the day fixed upon 
for voting the proposition was withdrawn. 
On Decemljer 20, 1870, a meeting was held at 
Oswego, at which it was determined to have 
an east-and-west road. On May 23, 1871, Os- 
Avego voted $75,000 in bonds for the Atlantic 
& Pacific Railway. On this proposition there 
were but five votes against the bonds. On 
June 28, 1 87 1, delegates from Montgomery, 
Labette and Cherokee counties met at Oswego, 
and decided to form a local company to aid 
in procuring the road from Springfield west. 
On August 13, 1871, a charter having been 
procured, the directors of the State Line, Os- 
wego & Independence Railway met at Oswe- 
go, and organized by electing H. G. Webb, of 
Labette county, president; Milton Douglas, of 
Cherokee county, vice-president, A. W. Jay, of 
Cherokee county, secretary; J. B. Emerson, of 
Montgomery county, treasurer; and J. J. 
Browne, of Labette cijunty, attorney. In Sep- 
tember, 1872, a survey for the line of road 
from Minersville to Oswego was made. An- 
other local company, designated the Memphis, 
Carthage & Northwestern Railway Company, 
had been formed, and contracts for the con- 
struction of the road as far as Oswego were 
entered into. A large force of hands was put 
upon the ruad, and the grading was nearly 
completed. While the bonds which had been 
voted could not be legally issued until the road 
was completed to Oswego, still, to aid its con- 
struction, by general consent of the citizens 
a part of the bonds of Oswego township were 
siild and the proceeds applied towards paying 

for the grading, ^^'ithout going into details, 
it is sufficient to say that this local company 
failed, and for some time nothing further was 
done toward the extension of the road. On 
January 4, 1875, Joseph Seligman bought this 
Memphis, Carthage & Northwestern road, and 
in February a new company was formed. On 
March 22, 1875, the Pierce City & Kansas 
Railway Company was consolidated with the 
State Line, Oswego & Independence Railway 
Company, the consolidated companies taking 
the name of the Missouri & Western Railway 
Company. Joseph Seligman was president and 
Edward Livingston secretary and treasurer. 
Additional bonds were voted by Oswego city 
and township. To show the interest which Os- 
wego felt in securing this road, it may be 
mentioned that one evening at a pulilic meet- 
ing held in the court-house personal aid to the 
amount of $32,745 was promised, all of which 
was afterwards paid, to secure this enterprise. 
On June 15, 1876, definite arrangements were 
made with Seligman for the construction of 
the road. Hobart & Condon were awarded the 
contract for preparing the road-bed from Min- 
ersville to Oswego. From this time the work 
progressed satisfactorily, and on Thursday, De- 
cember 14, 1876, just at dark, the construc- 
tion train reached the foot of Commercial 
street, in the city of Oswego. The end of 
the road remained at Oswego until 1879, when 
arrangements were made for pushing it west- 
ward, and during that season it was completed 
as far as Wichita. This construction was done 
in the name of a local company and with Ho- 
bart & Condon as chief contractors, but as soon 
as it was completed it came under the manage- 
ment of the "Frisco" company. 


There have been at least three strikes upon 
the M, K. & T. Rv., which have more or less 


affected the people of this county. In July. 
1877, the workmen at other points on the road 
struck; the men engaged in the shops at Par- 
sons did not formally strike, but appointed a 
committee to confer with the strikers; work 
was suspended for some time, but matters were 
finally arranged between the company and its 
employees so that no strike was made in this 
county. — In March, 1885, the workmen in the 
shops at Parsons, as well as the train-men gen- 
erally, went out on a strike. For a number of 
days freight traffic was completely blocked, 
but passenger trains continued to be operated. 
The dift'erences between the company and its 
hands were satisfactorily settled, and they all, 
or nearly all, were taken back into the com- 
pany's employ. The most serious of all strikes 
was in March, 1886. It extended all along the 
line of the road. On March 6th the machine 
shop whistle at Parsons sounded at 10 o'clock 
A. M., and the entire force of railroad employes 
ceased work and marched out. An effort was 
made by the governors of Kansas and Missouri 
to effect a settlement of the matters of differ- 
ence between the company and its hands, but 
were unsuccessful. New men were employed 
by the company, but were not allowed to work, 
the old employees being of sufficient force to 
prevent their performing their duties. The 
strikers placed a guard around the company's 
property to prevent its being injured, but would 
not- allow anyone to assist in moving trains. 
Adjutant General Campbell came do\\'n from 
Topeka and conferred with the strikers, but 
could not prevail upon them to come to any 
terms. Toward the last of March many of the 
strikers became more desperate and defiant 
than they had been at first. Not only was force 
used to pre\'ent freight trains from running 

and to "kill" the engines on all trains that at- 
tempted to pull out, but some went so far as 
to interfere with passenger travel. The track 
just north of Bachelor creek bridge was loos- 
ened, and the north-bound passenger train was 
ditched. Had the train been going south in- 
stead of north it would have been plunged into 
the creek and the result would necessarily have 
been fatal to many persons. Attempts were 
also made to burn some of the bridges. The 
citizens of Parsons organized for the purpose 
of assisting the company in running its trains, 
but the striking force was so strong that they 
were not able to accomplish their object. On 
the evening of April 2d seven car-loads of the 
State militia came into Parsons over the Ne- 
osho di\'isiL»n, and about the same time several 
more car-loads over the Sedalia division, and 
soon thereafter several more car-loads over the 
Gulf road. The arrival of the soldiers was a 
complete surprise to the strikers, as they had 
not learned that the militia had been called out. 
The. soldiers at once took control of the entire 
railroad property and prevented anyone from 
entering the premises, placed those who had 
been employ eil by the company in charge, 'and 
at once trains commenced to move. The strike 
was over. The soldiers remained several days, 
until everything was quiet antl the citizens' 
organization felt itself strong enough to pre- 
serx'e the peace. The leaders among the strik- 
ers were arrested on a crimina^l charge, and a 
number of them were tried and convicted. 
They were punished by fine and imprisonment 
in the county jail. The great body of those 
who participated in the strike permanently lost 
their places in the railroad employ, and many 
of them were practicallv financially ruined. 


I give the following letter as bearing upon 
the organization of political parties in the 
county : 

"Lakf. City, Col., April 5, 1892. 
"Friend Case: I am not much at writing 
history, and can only give you some of the 
points where I was interested and so remember 
them. You are right about the organization 
of the party at Trotter's ford and Jacksonville. 
It was there agreed to make no opposition to 
the organization of the southern part into an 
independent county. It was also agreed that 
they were, to nominate all the candidates 
for Neosho county from the northern part, and 
that we from the south part should abstain 
from voting for or against them, and should or- 
ganize on our own account, and trust to the 
Legislature to legalize our action. According to 
that agreement, a mass meeting of the Repub- 
licans was called soon after, and met in the 
open air outside of Carr & Bridgman's store, 
in the east part of what is now Oswego. Dr. 
J. F. Nevvlon was elected as its chairman, and 
the meeting then proceeded to nominate can- 
didates for representative and for county of- 
ficers. I was nominated for representative, 
Ben. Rice for sheriff, Sam. Collins, John Rice, 
and I think Noris Harrer, for county com- 
missioners ; A. T. Dickerman for county clerk, 
I think. You can verify these names from 
the records. After my admission to the Legis- 

lature the programme was carried out. Al- 
though our action was irregular, I found all 
the members and State officers willing to ren- 
der any assistance in their power. A resolu- 
tion was at once introduced legalizing my elec- 
tion, and I was admitted to my seat. I then 
went to Governor Crawford with our petition 
for appointment of temporary county officers, 
and had those elected in the fall appointed. 
"The Democratic party in 1866 nominated 
^^'. C. W'atkins for representative. 

"Very truly yours, C. H. Bent." 


The introduction of greenbacks into the 
politics of this county (not as an element of 
bribery, but as an organized body of voters) 
dates from 1877. when the first ticket was put 
into the field by the Greenback party. But of 
course there was some work done before that 
time in the way of organizing clubs and dis- 
seminating the principles of the party. I am 
not able to say definitely when and where the 
first organization was effected. The first men- 
tion which I have found of this organization 
is a card published in the Advance of Septem- 
ber 16, 1875, signed by J. W. Caldwell, calling 
a meeting of those who were favorable to or- 
ganizing a greenback club, to be held at Drake's 
Hall, Chetopa, September 18, 1875. I have 
no information as to whether or not the or- 



ganization was effected, but probably it was 
not, or if so it did not live long. Sometime in 
1877 a club was organized at the Slocum 
school-house. District Xo. 75, in Mound "V^al- 
ley township. On May 18, 1878, a club was 
organized at the Valley school-house, District 
No. yi. in Elm Grove township. During this 
spring a number of clubs were organized and 
a more perfect county organization was ef- 
fected in a convention held at Parsons in April. 
After 1883 there was little life manifested by 
this party under its organization as then ex- 


Was organized at Alound A'alley in the latter 
part of 1885. It was conducted with open doors 
(as a reform club till June 9, i88fi, when a 
secret work was adopted and a secret organiza- 
tion perfected by the following charter mem- 
bers : George Campbell, Dr. E. Lemon, J. K. 
Russell, I. M. Evans, W. N. McCoid, William 
Clark, Joseph Riff. J. White, N. Clark, B. E. 
Miller, B. F. Ralls, and E. H. Barnhart. Un- 
der the leadership of Mr. Campbell a number 
of lodges were instituted in this and adjoining 
counties, and the organization was extended 
to other States. In 1886 Mr. Campbell es- 
taUished and during 1887 conducted a paper 
called IhiUcd Labor, for the purpose of giv- 
ing publicity and strength to the new organi- 
zation. Whatever may have been the good 
effects of this effort on others I do not know, 
but it proved a very disastrous undertaking 
financially to Mr. Campbell. After spending 
several thousand dollars in the attempt to put it 
on a paying basis, the publication of this official 
organ ceased, after being conducted about a 
year. In 1889 this organization was merged 

in that of the Farmers' .\lliance and Indus- 
trial L'nion. In tlie meantime out of this and 
other lal)or organizations there had sprung up 
a ne\\" pohtical larty wh'ch tn )k the name of 
the Union Labor party, which was organized 
at Cincinnati, February 22, 1887. John W. 
Breidenthal, being one of the delegates from 
Kansas, was made chairman of the State com- 
mittee. He at once took active steps toward 
organizing the party in this county. The first 
clulj in the county was organized at Edna, in 
March. This was soon followed by others. 
A mass convent'on was called, to meet at Alta- 
mont, August 3, 1887. This meeting was 
largely attended. George E. Stone, of How- 
ard township, was made chairman. To pre- 
vent being imjjosed upon a pledge was required 
of all parties participating in its proceedings 
to support the Union Labor ticket: 137 
signed this pledge. The party was then or- 
ganized, and ^\'m. Coik was made cha-irman 
of the central committee. To Mr. Breidenthal 
is. in a large measure, due the victory which 
the party achieved that fall, for he was in- 
strumental in bringing a number nf their best 
speakers into the county, among whom were 
Gen. J. B. Weaver, H. .\. Streeter. Jesse 
Harper, Moses Hull, and Capt. Geo. \\\ Bell. 
With the except'on of commissioner, this party 
elected the entire county ticket that fall. 


This organization so far as it relates to this 
county dates from January, 1889, when Mount 
Zion Sub-Alliance was organized, in Osage 
township. This was followed by Pleasant Hill, 
in the same month, and on February 12th Globe 
Alliance was orsranized, in Mound Valley 
township. These organizations were formed 
by C. Mcllvain. .According to one report An- 


gola Alliance was organized before either of 
those above named. The County Alliance was 
formed at Altamont, on May i8, 1889. It has 
had the following officers : Presidents — G. J. 
Coleman, E. A. Richcreek, Daniel Pfaff, Ben 
Johnson. Secretaries — C. L. Albin, Walter 
Phillips, Harry Mills, George Campbell. Out 
of this, and the organizations which preceded 
it, in 1890 sprang the People's party. 



The Republican party in this county was 
organized in 1866. The following are the 
steps that were taken to secure such organiza- 
tion, and to hold the first convention. 

The fi>re part of August, 1866, a number 
of Republicans were assembled at the store of 
Roe & Dennison, at the Erie postoffice, about a 
mile north of the present site of Erie. Po- 
litical matters were talked over, and it was de- 
cided to call a convention at Trotter's ford, 
to organize the Republican party. Afterwards, 
by request of those residing in the southern 
part of the county ( in wliat is now Labette 
county), the place of the meeting was changed 
from Trotter's ford to Jacksonx-ille. Delegates 
having been selected from all parts of the coun- 
ty in such way as each locality chose, they met 
in convention in a grove some two or three 
hundred yards north and about the same dis- 
tance west of what is now the southeast cor- 
ner of Neosho county, on Saturday, Septem- 
ber 8, 1866. A :\Ir. Nugent (?) was chair- 
man, and J. A. \\^ells, secretary. At the re- 
quest of the delegates from the southern part 
of the county, the nomination for the county 
officers were all made from those residing in 
the north half, with the agreement on their 
part that at the next session of the Legislature 
the countv should be divided. On motion of 

G. W. Kingsbury, it was voted that when the 
division was made the southern part should 
be called (as they then wrote the word) La 
Bet county. J. S. Waters was recognized as 
the chairman of the delegation from the south- 
ern half of the county. 

Following we give a summary of various 
political conventions which have been held in 
Labette county, from 1866 to 1900, inclusive: 

In October, 1866, a Republican convention 
was called for the proposed new county of 
"La Bet" (alluded to above). It met in the 
: open air near Carr & Bridgman's store, Os- 
wego: J. F. Newlon. chairman, A. T. Dicker- 
man, secretary. The following ticket was 
nominated : County clerk, A. T. Dickerman ; 
sheriff, Benjamin A. Rice; clerk d'strict c lurf , 
Elza Craft: register of deeds, George Bent; 
county assessor, Jabez Zink; probate judge, 
David C. Lowe : county treasurer, C. C. Clover ; 
superintendent public instruction, J. F. New- 
lon: coroner. G. W. Ivingsbury; representative, 
Charles H. Bent ; commissioners. S. \\\ Col- 
lins, C. H, Talbot, and Bergen \'an Ness. 

J. S. ^^'aters, chairman central committee. 

March, 1867, open air. near Carr & Bridg- 
man's store. Oswego: J. F. Newlon, chairman, 
A. T. Dickerman, secretary. County clerk, 
A. T. Dickerman: county treasurer, C. C. 
Clover; sheriff, Benjamin A. Rice; county as- 
sessor, Francis Wall ; clerk district court, R. 
S. Cornish: probate judge, Bergen Van Ness; 
register of deeds, Elza Craft: superintendent 
public instruction, John F. Newlon ; cor.^ner, 
George W. Kingsbury; sur\eyor, Z. Harris; 
commissioners, Nathan Ames, William Shay, 
and David C. Lowe. 

September i, 1867, Benj. A. Rice, chair- 
man. Representative Eighty-fifth district, L 
S. Waters; sheriff, Jnhn N. ^^'atson; coroner, 
G. W. Kingsbury ; county clerk, C. E. Simons ; 



county attorne}-, ^^'. J- Parkinson; county 
treasurer, Bergen A'an Ness; proljate judge 
David C. Lowe; commissioners, Isaac Butter- 
wiirth, \\'illiam Logan, J. F. Molesworth ; su- 
perintendent public instruction, Enos Reed ; 
clerk district court, R. S. Cornish; county sur- 
veyor, S. R. Southwick; register, Charles C. 
Beggs; county assessor, J. R. Morrison. 

C. H. Bent, chairman central committee, J. 
S. Waters, secretary. 

September, 1868, Oswego.* Representa- 
tive Eighty-fifth district. Dr. D. D. McGrath ; 
probate judge, H. M. Minor; superintendent 
public instruction, R. J. Elliutt: cnunty attor- 
ney, Walter P. Bishop; county clerk, Charles 
C. Beggs; clerk district court, Rnl.ert Steel; 
ct'untv ciimmissioner first district, Elisha Ham- 

E. R. Trask. chairman central committee, 
^^'. LI. Carpenter, secretary. 

September 17, 1869, court-house. Osweg.i. 
Probate judge, \\". H. Witlock; treasurer. 
Harvey I. Cox; sheriff, J. C. Wilson; county 
attornev, J. S. Waters; county clerk, L. C. 
Howard: register, P. H. Cherry; surveyor, E. 
G. Dax'idson; coroner. James Logan; commis- 
sioners, first district, Gilbert Martin, second, 
J. S. Anderson, third, James H. Beggs. 

E. Hammer, chairman central committee 
E. D- Graybill, secretary. 

September 17, 1870, court-house, Oswego 
J. W. Horner, chairman. C. H. Lewis, ?ecre 
tary. Representative Eighty-fifth district, J 
]\I. Mahr. on third ballot over I. \V. Patrick 
and C. H. Bent; probate judge, B. W. Perkins 
on third ballot over J. Demorst and Davis Vul- 
gamore ; county attorney, J. S. Waters, by ac 
clamation ; superintendent public instruction, J 

W. Horner on first ballot over R. J. Elliutt and 
D. C. Constant ; clerk district court, D. S. [Mor- 
rison on first ballot over Robert Steel and E. 

D. Graybill; surveyor, G. T. Waltun by ac- 
clamation, provided Davidson does not get 
back; commissioner first district, Samuel Bal- 
lentine on first ballot over David Stanfield. 

T. E. Clark, chairman central committee, 

E. D. Graybill, secretary. 

October 7, 1871, at court-house, Oswego; 
J. W. Horner, chairman, E. E. Hastings, sec- 
retary. Sheriff, L. S. Crum on first ballot over 
J. C. Wilson; register. I. \\\ Patrick on sec- 
ond ballot over J. G. Steel, R. E. Holloway. 
Le\-i Seabridge, and Tlmmas Irish: cnunty 
clerk, L. C. Howard on first ballet over R. J. 
Elliott, E. D. Grayl)il!, and George T. \\'alton; 
treasurer, C. F. Smith on first liallot o\-er X. 
Sanford: ciironer, J. F. Newlon on first ballot; 
sur\eyor. S. R. Southwick, by acclamation ; 
commissioners, first district, Henry Stewart: 
second-. J. H. Hibljits: third. \\'. H. Car- 

J. W. Horner, chairman central comm'ttee. 
T. C. Cory, secretary. August 7, 1872, Horner 
resigned as chairman of the central committee. 
and J. S. \A'aters was elected in his place, and 

F. B. McGill, secretary. 

October 5, 1872, at cnurt-huuse, Oswego; 
E. B. Ste\'ens, chairman, I. O. Pickering, sec- 
retary. Senator Fifteenth district, J. H. Crich- 
ton, on third ballot over J. S. Waters and J. 
J. Woods ; probate judge, B. W. Perkins, by ac- 
clamation ; county attorney. E. C. AA'ard on 
second ballot, over David Kelso, W. B. Glasse. 
T. L. Darlow : clerk district court, R. J. Elliott, 
on third ballot, over Wm. Houck, John Hamb- 
lin, D. S. Morrison; coroner, William Pinker- 
ton, by acclamation ; superintendent public in- 
struction, Mary A. Higby, on first ballot., over 



^^^ a. Starr, E. H. Taylor, Keirsey Cook; 
commissioner, second district, J. B. Cijok, who 
declined nomination, and George Farland was 
substituted by central committee. 

F. B. McGill. chairman central committee, 
S. O. Fletcher, secretary. 

October ii, 1873. at court-house, Oswego; 
Josephus Moore, chairman, H. L. Partndge, 
secretary. Probate judge, S. L. Coulter; treas- 
urer. C. F. Smith: sheriff. S. O. Fletcher, on 
second ballot, over J. X. Watson; county clerk, 
J. B. Cook, on first ballot, over L. C. Howard 
and Saml. Collins; register, I. W. Patrick, by 
acclamation ; surveyor, Samuel F. Terrill, b}' 
acclamation; coroner, D. B. Crouse, by ac- 
clamation ; commissioners, first district, John 
XelsMu; second, P. B. Clark; third, W. A. 
Starr. Decided to make n ) nomination for 
representative of the Forty-third district; For- 
ty-fourth district, W. H. iMapes. 

R. J. Elliott, chairman central committee, 
\\'illard Davis, secretary. 

September 26, 1874, at court-house. Os- 
wego; E. B. Stevens, chairman. L. i\I. Bedell, 
secretary. Senator Fifteenth district, J- H. 
Crichtnn, (in second ballot, over T. C. Cory, 
D. Kelso, and W. H. Mapes; clerk district 
court, H. C. Cook, on second ballot, over R. J. 
Elliott. E. B. Newton, and Wm. Houck ; super- 
intendent public instruction, iMary A. Higby, 
on first ballot, over J. G. Coleman and Allen 
C. Baker; county attorney, \^'fllard Davis, by 
acclamation; coroner, J. G. Coleman, liy ac- 

C. H. Bent, chairman central committee, 
V. J. Knapp, secretary. 

October 2, 1875. court-house, Oswego; J. 
S. Waters, chairman, G. \\'. Hawk, secretary. 
Treasurer, George M. Caldwell, by acclama- 
tion; sheriff, S. B. Abbott, on first ballot, over 

J. H. Golden and J. A. iMapes; county clerk. S. 
T. Herman, by acclamation; register. I. W. 
Patrick, by acclamation; coroner, D. B. Crouse, 
by acclamation ; surveyor, S. R. Southwick, on 
second ballot, over George Thornton and 
Charles McClung; commissioners, first district, 
J. J. W'oods; second, ^^'. i\I. iMabery; third, 
W. A. Starr. 

J. i\I. Cavaness, chairman central commit- 
tee. S. O. Fletcher, secretary. 

September 16. 1876, court-house, Oswego; 
i\Iajor H.W. i\Iartin, ci-.airman. George Thorn- 
I ton. secretary. Senator Fifteenth district, T- 
I H. Crichtcn, on seventh ballot, over iNI. ^^^ 
I Reynolds. J. G. Coleman, H. G. \\'ebb, and 
W. B. Glasse ; probate judge. S. L. Coulter, b}- 
acclamation ; clerk district court, H. C. Cook, 
by acclamation ; county attorney, J. S. Waters, 
j by acclamation; superintendent public instruc- 
tion. Alary A. Higby, on first ballot, over L. 
I J. Vandingham, Kiersey Cook, and A. C. 
Baker. * 

\\'. B. Glasse, chairman central committee, 
George Thornton, secretary. 

September 22, 1877. court-house, Oswego; 
Major H. ^^'. i\Iartin, chairman. C. A. Wilkin, 
secretary. Treasurer, G. iM. Caldwell, by ac- 
clamation; register, I. W. Patrick, on first bal- 
lot, over W. A. Starr; county clerk, T. A. 
Fellows, by acclamation; sheriff, D. ]\I. Ben- 
der, on fourth ballot, over S. B. Abbott, J. 
W. H. Golden, and George Campbell ; surveyor, 
George Thornton ; coroner, \\'. R. iMoore ; 
commissioners, first district, H. S. Coly ; sec- 
ond, W. J. Herrcd ; third, J. B. Swartz. 

F. B. McGill, chairman central committee, 
Cierirge Thornton secretary. 

September 14, 1878, court-house, Oswego; 
D. Kelso, chairman, L. i\I. Bedell, secretary. 
Clerk district court, H. C. Cook; countv at- 



toniey. J. S. Waters : superintendent public in- 
struction, -\llen C. Baker: commissioner first 
district. T. E. Clark. 

C. H. Kimball, cbairman central committee, 

D. M. Bender, secretary. 

April 24, 1879, opera house, Oswego; R. 
W. \\'right, chairman, L. ]\I. Bedell, secretary. 
Treasurer, George Thornton, on first ballot, 
over ]\I. AI. Kingsbury ; sheriff, D. ]\I. Bender, 
on first ballot, over J. \\\ H. Golden, D. H. 
David, and C. B. Woodford: register, I. W. 
Patrick, en first ballot, over J. M. Alorgan, 

E. B. Baldwin, and George Poland ; c unty 
clerk, W. H. Kiersey, on first ballot, over A. 
T. Dickerman, and F. G. Hunt; surveyor, J. 
M. Wells, by acclamation ; coroner, W. W. 
Inglish. on first ballot, over Dr. X. M. ]\Iiller: 
commissioner second district, A. X. Russell. 
on second ballot, over George Hildreth J. W. 
Mason, D. F. Xoblett, Michael Xoel, and A. 
W. Darling. 

C. H. Kimball, chairman central committee, 
R. W. W^right, secretary. 

September 25, 1880, opera house, Oswego; 
J. S. Waters, chairman, F. W. Felt and A. H. 
Tyler, secretaries. Senator Fifteenth district, 
^Y. B. Glasse, on third ballot, over C. H. Kim- 
ball, ^[. W. Reynolds, and H. W. Martin; 
probate judge, Nelson Case, on first ballot, over 
A. H. Ayres, Wm. Starr., and H. W. Martin; 
county attorney, L. C. True, on first ballot, 
over J. D. Conderman and J. E. Bryan; clerk 
district court, H. C. Cook, by acclamation ; 
superintendent public instruction, M. Chidester, 
on second ballot, over J. F. Hill, Xathan \\'ill- 
iams, and Allen C. Baker ; commissioner third 
district. J. J. Henderson. 

J. S. Waters, chairman central committee, 
J. E. Bryan, secretary. 

September 24, 1881, Oswego ; J. S. Waters, 
chairman, E. W. Bedell, secretary. Treasurer, 

George M. Caldwell, on first ballot, over 
George Thornton and G. S. McDole; register, 
A. M. Fellows, on fifth ballot, over I. W. 
Patrick, Marshall Johnson, Jesse M. Abirgan, 
and James Paxton ; sherift', D. M. Bender, on 
second ballot, over J. W. Wilson, S. B. Ab- 
bott, D. H. David, }. W. H. Golden, and C. 
E. Simons ; county clerk, F. W. Felt on second 
ballot over W. A. Starr and W. H. Kiersey; 
surveyor, B. R. Cunningham by acclamation ; 
coroner, Lewis Peterson on first ballot over S. 
M. Gregory. 

J. S. Waters, chairman central committee, 
J. H. Morrison, secretary. 

September 29, 1882, Oswego; Thomas 
O'Hare, chairman, L. M. Bedell, secretary. 
County attorney, L. C. True on first ballot o\-er 
T. C. Cory and J. E. Bryan; probate judge, 
Nelson Case, by acclamation ; clerk district 
court, H. C. Cook, by acclamation; superin- 
tendent public instruction, Mrs. Anna C. Baker 
on third ballot over O. M. McPherson, ]\I. 
Chidester, B. R. Cunningham, and W. F. 
Schoch ; coroner, H. C. Richardson, b}' accla- 
mation ; commissioner second district, C. M. 
Keeler on first ballot over A. X'^. Russell and 
A. T. Dickerman. 

T. J. Calvin, chairman central committee, 
L. M. Bedell, secretary. 

October 20, 1883. Oswego: J. E. Bryan, 
chairman. O. M. McPherson, secretary. Treas- 
urer, C. W. Littleton on first ballot over M. L. 
Trotter ; register, Asa Smith on first ballot 
over E. B. Baldwin and N. M. Millfjr; county 
clerk, F. W. Felt, by acclamation : sheriff. J. 
T. Lampson on second ballot over Andrew Ka- 
ho, C. E. Simons, C. B. Woodford, and W. H. 
Webb; surveyor, B. R. Cunningham by accla- 
mation ; coroner, E. W. Dorsey by acclama- 
tion ; commissioner third district, J. E. Brooks, 
by acclamation. 


J. H. Morrison, chairman central commit- 
tee, Jess Brockway, secretary. 

September 6, 1884. Oswego; Thomas 
O'Hare, chairman, S. W. Kniffin. secretary. 
Senator Ninth district. C. H. Kimball on first 
ballot over J. B. Swartz and J. E. Bryan : coun- 
ty attorney J. D. Conderman on third ballot 
over W. B. Glasse and J. H. Morrison; clerk 
district court, E. B. Baldwin on first ballot over 
^^^ \\'. Cook; probate judge, S. L. Coulter on 
first ballot over Isaac Hill ; superintendent pub- 
lic instruction, Mrs. Anna C. Baker, by accla- 
mation ; commissioner first district, D. A. Jones 
on second ballot over J. F. Hill. Louis Von 
Trebra. and J. C. ]\IcKnight; commissioner 
second district, to fill vacancy. J. AI. Mason on 
third ballot over Peter Shufelt. J. N. Tibbets, 
]\I. Noe. and William Slaughter. 

T. C. Cory, chairman central committee, S. 
O. Fletcher, secretary. 

October 17, 1885, opera house, Oswego; 
J. B. Swartz, ohairman, S. T. Herman, secre- 
tary. Treasurer C. W. Littleton, by acclama- 
tion ; register, Asa Smith, by acclamation; 
sheriff, C. B. \\'oodford on first ballot over I. 
N. Cornelius, J. T. Lampson, ^^'. H. Sharp, 
and Joseph Craft; county clerk, \\'. W. Cook 
on second ballot over O. E. Woods and W. 
J. Quick; surveyor, W. ^^^ Dentler on first 
ballot over J. M. Hart; coroner, E. ^^^ Dor- 
sey, by acclamation. 

H. H. Lusk, chairman central committee. 
A. H. Tyler, secretary. 

On October 10, 1885, a convention was 
held at Edna, at which James W'ilmoth was 
nominated for commissinner of second dis- 

. October 9, 1886, opera house, Oswego; J. 
\V. ]\Iarley, chairman, J. W. Weltner and L. 
'M. Bedell, secretaries. County attorney, T. C. 
Cory on first ballot over J. D. Conderman and 

Jess Brockway; probate judge, T. J. Calvin on 
first ballot over Isaac Hill and F. H. Atchin- 
son ; clerk district court, E. B. Baldwin on first 
ballot over W. E. Crawford; superintendent 
public instruction. Mrs. Anna Hickenbottom 
on second ballot over ^Irs. Anna C. Baker. C. 
C. Robbins, L. Tomlin, J. W. Iden. and ]\Irs. 
Susan C. Keefe; commissioner third district, 
J. E. Brooks. 

J. W. Marley, chairman central committee, 
M. E. Williams, secretary. 

August 2/, 1887, Oswego; S. T. Herman, 
chairman, Abe Steinbarger and H. H. Lusk, 
secretaries. Treasurer. A\'. F. Thorne on first 
ballot over B. R. A'an dieter and William 
Slaughter; register, J. A. Flora on fifth ballot 
over O. S. Kliser, Ella ^\'ood, Wilf. Cooper, 
and J. A. Lough; sheriff, J. T. Lampson on 
seventh ballot over C. B. Woodford, D. M. 
Bender, I. N. Cornelius, and A. M. Newman; 
county clerk, Wylie W. Cook, by acclamation ; 
surveyor, E. P. Bayless, by acclamation ; cor- 
oner, J. T. Finley on first ballot over Rep 
Smith ; commissioner first district, D. A. Jones. 

S. T. Herman, chairman central committee, 
Joseph Craft, secretary. 

September i, 1888, Oswego; J. B. Swartz, 
chairman, W. F. Thrall, secretary. Senator 
Tenth district, C. H. Kimball, by acclamation; 
county attorney. J. H. Morrison on fourth bal- 
lott over A. A. Osgood. F. H. Atchinson; 
]\1. E. Williams, and J. D. Conderman; probate 
judge, I. J. Calvin, by acclamation ; clerk dis- 
trict court, Colin Hodge on fourth ballot over 
J. S. Hileman. Ira F. Adams, H. H. Graue, 
W. H. Hunter, and George Hildreth ; superin- 
tendent public instruction, Agnes Baty on third 
ballot over A. D. ]\Iartin and S. L. Fogleman. 

L. S. Crum. chairman central committee, 
W. W. Cook, secretary. 31, 1889, Parsons; J. B. Swartz, 


chairman, Thomas O'Hare and Evelyn B. 
Baldwin, secretaries. Treasnrer, William 
Slaughter, by acclamation ; reg'ister, J. A. Flora 
on third ballot over B. R. Van Meter and J. 
S. Odell; sheriff, W. H. Sharp on fifth bal- 
lott over J. E. Brooks, S. B. Shaffer, J. B. 
Pickering, A. J. Kirby, and W. J. Webb ; coun- 
ty clerk, George Tilton; surveyor, J. W. Bog- 
gess ; coroner. Thomas J. Finley ; commission- 
er, J. AV. Scott on first ballot over C. J. Dar- 

W. A\'. McEwen, chairman central com- 
mittee. J. L. ]\IcGinness secretary. 

August 23, 1890, Oswego; J. B. Cook, 
chairman. A. H. Tyler, secretary. County at- 
torney, W. F. Schoch, by acclamation ; probate 
judge, R. M. Hart, by acclamation; clerk dis- 
trict court, Colin Hodge, by acclamation; su- 
perintendent public instruction, Fannie Smitn 
on first ballot over Samuel Wade; comnns- 
sioner first district, B. D. Roljerts. 

L. S. Crum, chairman central committee, 
W. W. Cook, secretary. 

September 5, 1891, Mound Valley; M. 
Byrne, chairman, W. W. Cook, secretary. 
Ti-easurer, \\'illiam Slaughter; county clerk, 
Geo. W. Tilton; register, J. C. Riclicreek on 
third ballot over J. W. Fee, J. A. Flora and 
L. G. Bigwood ; sherift", Andrew Kaho on third 
ballot over W. H. Sharp, I. N. Cissna, A. W. 
Newman, D. M. Bender, J. E. Brooks, and 
J. W. Bennett; coroner, T. J. Finley on first 
ballot over Jacob Crump, M. S. Clayton ; sur- 
veyor, M. C. Gaffey on first ballot over J. W. 

W. F. Schoch, chairman central commit- 
tee, Colin Hodge, secretary. 

August 16, 1892. Parsons; W. G. Hoover, 
chairman, W^ K. Hayes and C. S. Newlon, 
secretaries. Senator, W. W. McEwen, bv ac- 

clamation; county attorney, A. D. Neals on 
third ballot over M. Byrne, J. W. Iden. and D. 
H. Wilson; probate judge. H. H. Graue was 
nominated on first ballot over .\. T. Dicker- 
man and W. F. Grierson, but as he had not 
been a candidate for that office he declined to 
accept the nomination, and W. F. Grierson was 
nominated on second ballot over A. T. Dick- 
erman ; clerk district court, E. C. Clark on first 
ballot over H. H. Graue; superintendent pub- 
lic instruction. A. D. Martin, by acclamation; 
commissioner third district. J- W. Scott, by ac- 

Dr. C. Rockhold, chairman central commit- 
tee, U. S. Harr, secretary. 

August 28, 1893, Oswego; R. \A'. Wright, 
chairman. H. C. Ford, secretary. Treasurer, 
John R. Monroe over J. M. Thompson: coun- 
ts- clerk. J. F. Thompson, by acclamation ; reg- 
ister of deeds. H. H. Graue, over \A'allace W. 
Bradbury; sheriff, John W. Bennett over Jo- 
seph Craft and J. W. Scott ; surveyor, E. P. 
Ba^•less, l^y acclamation ; coroner, T. J. Finley, 
by acclamation; commissioner first district, D. 
C \\'atsun, by acclamation. As authorized by 
the convention, at a later date the central com- 
mittee nominated the following high school 
trustees: Nelson Case, J. M. Birt. W. G. 
Hoover, I. S. Boyer, Dr. C. S. Newlmi and J. 
W. Fee. 

Nelson Case, chairman central committee, 
W. F. Schoch, secretary. 

July 14, 1S94, Oswego; J. W. Scott, chair- 
man. J. D. Lusk, secretary. Probate judge. ]. 
C. Richcreek over J. H. Young and W. S. 
Stokebake; clerk district court. E. C. Clark, 
bv acclamation; county attorney, A. B. Swit- 
zer, by acclamation; superintendent pul.)lic in- 
struction. i\lrs. Ida C. iNIartin over I. S. Bo}-er. 
E. C. iMcKinIe\' and Clav D. Herod; commis- 


sioner second district, L. C. Freeman over 
James X. Tibbets; higb school trustees. J. ^I. 
Birt and \\\ G. Hoover, by acclamation. ' 

C. S. Xewlon, chairman central committee, 
Charles Harrington, secretary. 

August 31, 1895, Chetopa; Dr. F. E. Ham- 
ilton, chairman, L. M. Bedell, secretary. Treas- 
urer, E. W. Alinturn over \V. C. Dicus: coun- 
ty clerk. J. F. Thompson over J. \\'. Weaver ; 
sheriit. John W. Bennett, by acclamation ; reg- 
ister of deeds, H. H. Graue, by acclamation; 
surveyor, E. P. Bayless over J. W. B(3ggess; 
coroner, J.W. French over T. J. Finley, George 
W. Parks and Vance Camplaell : high school 
trustees. Xelson Case and E. E. Lauglilin b}- 

E. C. Clark, chairman central committee, 
O. Gossard, secretary. 

July 29, 1896, Parsons; James W. Scott 
chairman. W. H. Martin, secretary. Senator. 

E. C. Clark over Dr. W. W. McEwen ; probate 
judge, J. C. Richcreek, by acclamation; county 
attorney, E. L. Burton over J. \V. Iden, J. D. 
Conderman, Claude E. Kennedy and A. H. Ty- 
ler; clerk district court, W. C. Dicus over Colin 
Hodge. W. F. Cox and H. H. Beard; super- 
intendent public instruction, Mrs. Ida C. Mar- 
tin, by acclamation ; commissioner first district, 
D, U. Watson, by acclamation ; high school 
trustees, I. S. Boyer and R. A. Davis, by accla- 

H. H. Graue. chairman central committee. 
O. Gossard, secretary. 

September 9, 1897, Oswego; R. \\'. 
Wright, chairman, A. H. Tyler, secretary. 
Treasurer, E. W. Minturn, by acclamation ; 
county clerk. Ivy Prescott over Robert Mosh- 
er, W. C. Berry, B. F. Briggs, John M. Chans- 
ler and T. H. Lough; sheriff. David Bone- 
I)rake o\er D. .\. Jones. W. C. Weaver and 

F. M. Webli; register of deeds. Arch D. Swan- 

wick over Wallace W. Bradbury; surveyor, J. 
W. Boggess over E. P. Bayless ; coroner, J. W. 
French, by acclamation; commissioner second 
district, Lewis Woodyard; high school trustees. 
H. H. Long and I. S. Boyer. by acclamation. 
E. C. Clark, chairman central committee, 

E. E. Ford, secretary. 

June 2. 1898, Oswego; E. L. Burton, 
chairman. E. E. Ford, secretary. Probate 
judge, Lewis W. Grain over D. 1\I. Stice. \\'. 

F. Grierson, Alvah Shick, R. D. Talbot and 
F. M. Webb; county attorney, E. C. Clark 
over J. D. Conderman and A. H. Tyler ; clerk 
district court, T. A. Ryan, by acclamation ; su- 
perintendent public instruction. Miss Annie S. 
Arnold over Leslie Piatt and L. Lightfoot; 
coroner (to fill vacancy). J. \\'. French, by 
acclamation ; commissioner third district. R. D. 
Talbot; Jiigh school trustees, C. H. Williams 
and Samuel Bowman, by acclamation. 

C. S. X'^ewlon, chairman central committee, 
Thomas J. Lough, secretary. 

September 7, 1899, Oswego; Dr. C. Rock- 
hold, chairman, S. T. Herman, secretary. 
Treasurer. E. D. Bates, by acclamation ; coun- 
ty clerk, William Chapman by acclamation; 
sheriff, John E. Brooks over Frank Dienst; 
register of deeds. Arch D. Swanwick, by accla- 
mation; surveyor, E. P. Bayless over J. W. 
Boggess; coroner, Philip Bassett, by acclama- 
tion; commissioner first district. A. M. Strode, 
by acclamation ; high school trustees. A. B. 
Roller and J. H. Woodull, by acclamation. 

W. J. Lough, chairman central committee, 
Harry W. Starnes, secretary. 

July 19, 1900, Oswego; Dr. P. W. Barbe, 
chairman, Harry W. Starnes, secretary. Sena- 
tor, A. A. Osgood over W. J. Lough ; probate 
judge, Lewis W. Grain, by acclamation; coun- 
ty attorney. T. J. Flanneliy ovev Harry G. 
Davis; clerk district court, James W. Weaver, 


by acclamation ; superintendent pulslic instruc- 
tion, ^Nliss Annie S. Arnold, by acclamation ; 
commissioner second district (at a convention 
held at a later date), Oscar Potter; high school 
trustees. Dr. J. B. Henderson and W. Sturges, 
by acclamation. 

Arch D. Swanwick, chairman central com- 
mittee, George ^Nleek, secretary. 


Forty-third District. — October 7, 1871. 
Oswego: W. H. Carpenter, chairman, H. L. 
Partridge, secretary. Joseph J. Woods nomi- 
nated on third ballot over \V. H. Carpenter 
and Josephus Moore. — October 12. 1872, Par- 
sons; J. J. Woods, chairman, S. O. Fletcher, 
secretary. W. W. Harper on first ballot over 
J. H. Tibbets. — October 11, 1873. Oswego; 
\\'. W. Harper.— 1874, Parsons; J. J W o. .ds. 
October 9. 1875, Parsons; A. North, chairman, 
R. E. Holloway, secretary. M. W. Reynolds, 
by acclamation. 

Forty-fourtli District. — October 7, 1871, 
Oswego. D. C. Coostant on first ballot over 
Alexander Bishop. — October 5, 1872, Oswe- 
go; B. W. Perkins, chairman, Sylvester Cook, 
secretary. A\'. H. Mapes, by acclamation. — 
October 11. 1873. Oswego; W. H. Mapes. — 
September 26, 1874, Chetopa; W. P. Bishop, 
chairman, X. Sanford, secretary. J. C. Mc- 
Knight on first ballot over R. W. Wright and 
S. M. Canaday. — October 9. 1875, Chetopa; 
J. C. Watson, chairman, E. W. Bedell, secre- 
tary. Owen Wimmer on third ballot over R. 
\\'. Wright, C. H. Bent, and E. Johnson. 

Forty-fourth District. — October 7, 1876, 
Parsons ; S. Mayginnis, chairman, W. L. Win- 
ter, secretary. M. W. Reynolds on first bal- 
lott over W. A. Starr. — September 28, 1878, 
Parsons; A. H. Ayres, chairman, Wm. Hors- 

fall, secretary. M. W. Reynolds on first bal- 
lott over Frank Wel)b. — September 2~, 1880. 
J. B. Swartz on first ballot. 

Fort y-tif til District. — September 9, 1876, 
Oswego; W. H. Mapes, chairman, W. B. 
Glasse, secretary. F. A. Bettis on first ballot 
over James Paxton and R. W. Wright. — Sep- 
tember 4, 1878, Oswego; E. D. Keirsey, chair- 
man, S. W. Canaday, secretary. F. A. Bettis on 
thirtieth ballot over F. B. McGill, H. W. 
Barnes, J. L. Williams and others. — Septem- 
ber 25, 1880, Oswego. J. S. Waters on fourth 
ballot over R. W. Wright and J. L. Williams. 
Forty-si.rfli District. — September 9, 1876, 
Chetopa; G. W. Jenkins, chairman, S. T. Her- 
man, secretary. J. H. Hibbits on first ballot 
over H. W. Martin and Owen Wimmer. — 
September 21, 1878, Chetopa; Tim Kay, chair- 
man, George H. Bates, secretary. T. J. Cal- 
vin on sixtieth ballot over H. W. Martin. Alex. 
Duncan, and J. H. Crichton. — September 22, 
1880; L. M. Bedell, chairman, J. F. Hill, sec- 
retary. T. J. Calvin, by acclamation. 

Thirty-third District.—Stptemhev 9, 1882, 
Parsons ; S. Mayginnis, chairman, Lee Clark, 
secretar)'. W. L. Simons nominated on first 
ballot (informal), but declined; on second bal- 
lot J. W. Fee nominated over J. B. Swartz 
and S. L. Obenchains. — September 23, 1884, 
Parsons. David Kelso on first ballot. 

Tliirty-fourtli Fistrict. — September 29, 
1882. Oswego; E. D. Keirsey, chairman, An- 
drew Kaho. secretary. J. S. Waters on first 
ballot over H. C. Richardson. — September 6, 
1884, Oswego; James Paxson. chairman, Wm. 
Houck, secretary. H. C. Cook, by acclama- 

Thirty-fifth D/.v/ru7.— September 28. 1882, 
Chetopa ; Wesley Faurot, chairman, E. W. Be- 
dell, secretary. J. H. Crichton on first ballot. 
— September 22, 1884, Chetopa; R. A. Bart- 


lett, chairman, Joe R. Hill, secretary. J. B. 
Cook, by acclamation. 

TKriity-ciglith District. — September 25, 
1886. Parsons. F. R. Morton.— September 
2, 1888, Parsons; J. H. Beatty, chairman, V. 
J. Knapp, secretary. W. W. Cranston nomi- 
nated on first ballot. — August 30, 1890, Par- 
sons; \\'. H. Thome, chairman, M. Byrne, sec- 
retary. A. H. Tyler on second ballot over J. 
M. Birt and C. J. Darling.— October 4, 1890, 
a second con\'ention was held to act on the 
matter of Mr. Tyler's withdrawal, die having 
signified to the central committee his willing- 
ness to withdraw. His action was accepted, 
and T- ^I- Birt was nominated in his place. 

Twenty-ninth District.— October 9, 1886, 
Oswego; J. W. Marley, chairman, M. E. Will- 
iams, secretary. J. H. Morrison on first bal- 
lot over H. C. C<.ok.— Septemlier 13, 1888, 
Altamont; \V. F. Schoch, chairman, M. E. 
^^'illiams, secretary. H. S. Cley <jn first bal- 
lot over J. J. Miles. — September 13. 1890, Al- 
tamont; H. M. Debolt, chairman. \\'. K. Orr, 
secretary. T- H. Morrison, by acclamation. 

Thirtieth District. — October 16, 1886. Che- 
topa; T. C. McKnight. chairman, Bayard T. 
Burnes. secretary. J. J. Slaughter, on second 
ballot, over J. S. Hileman, B. D. Roberts, 
Colin Hodge, and Isaac Butterworth. — Octo- 
ber 2, 1888, Edna; J. E. Snevely, chairman, 
Presley McKnight, secretary. J. S. Hileman, 
by acclamation. — September 6, 1890, Edna; 
E. A. Herrod, chairman, M. N. Baldwin, sec- 
retary. \\'. J. Raymond, by acclamation. 

Tzventy-sixth District. — September 3, 
1892, Parsons; J. W. Fee, chairman, J. D. 
Lusk, secretary. D. M. Bender, on first lial- 
lot, over Arch Wade. — August 25. 1894. Par- 
sons; F. M. Webb, chairman, J. D. Lusk. sec- 
retary. D. M. Bender, by acclamation. — July 
29, 1896, Parsons; George K. Ratliff, chair- 

man, J. D. Lusk, secretary. D. M. Bender, 
by acclamation. 

Tzventy-sevcnth District. — September 20, 
1892, Chetopa; T. J. Calvin, chairman. Dr. C. 
S. Nevvlon, secretary. W. G. Hoover, by accla- 
mation. — August 4, 1894, Oswego; L. M. Be- 
dell, chairman, G. A. Nicholetts. Secretary. W. 
J. Lough, over W. F. Schoch.— July 28, 1896, 
Chetopa ; J. F. Von Trebra, chairman, G. W. 
Tilton, secretary. W. J. Lough, by acclama- 
tion. — June 4, 1898, Parsons; J. W. Iden, 
chairman, J. D. Lusk, secretary. Arthur 
Cranston, over Charles F. Turner. — September 
27, 1900, Parsons; M. L. Morgan, chairman, 
H. C. Sourbeer, secretary. J. B. McDonald, 
over Fred H. Brown and J. M. Gregory. 

Tii'cnty-ciglith district.— June 2, 1898, Os- 
wego; J. A. Co.x, chairman, Lee IMcGill, secre- 
tary. T. J. Flannelly, by acclamation. — July 
19, 1900, Oswego; Walter Von Trebra, chair- 
man, Lee McGill, secretary. J. ^^^ ]\Iarley, by 


In October, 1866, an informal Democratic 
caucus was held at a spring on Short's claim, 
in section 22, Montana township. D. M. Clover 
was chairman, and M. A. Victor, secretary. It 
was attended quite generally by the Demo- 
crats in the community, and the sentiment was 
to vote a Democratic ticket. In view of this 
they nominated a full county ticket. I have 
obtained only partial information respecting it. 
A part of the ticket was as follows ; W. C. 
Watkins, for representative, H. C. Bridgman 
for county clerk. Nelson Carr for county treas- 
urer, Samuel Dunham for superintendent pub- 
lic instruction. 

October, 1867, Democratic caucus in Bun- 
tain building, Oswego. ^\^ C. Watkins nom- 


inated for representative Eighty-fifth district, 
H. C. Bridgman for county treasurer. The 
rest of the ticket was left for parties to run 
independent. Dr. J. B. Thurman ran for pro- 
bate judge. 

September 19. 1868, Fleming building, Os- 
wego; J. D. McCue, chairman, J. F. Waskey, 
secretary. Representative Eighty-fifth district, 
W. C. Watkins; superintendent public instruc- 
tion, Jacob Ruble; county commissioner, G. 
W. Franklin ; county attorney, N. L. Hibbard ; 
county clerk, D. ^^'. Clover; clerk district 
court, E. Wells; projjate judge, John Richard- 

In 1869 no con\-entiiin was held, a caucus 
deeming it best to let parties run independent 
who wished to oppose the Republican ticket. 

July 23, 1870, court-house, Oswego. M. V. 

B. Bennett made a speech, and steps were taken 
to efifectually organize the party in the county ; 
what had been done theretofore having 
been rather informal, and hardly regular party 
action. A county convention was called for 
September 10, 1870, at Oswego, which as- 
sembled, and adjourned to September 24th, 
after electing W. P. Lamb and M. V. B. Ben- 
nett delegates to the state convention. 

September 24, 1870, Oswego; D. J. Doolen, 
chairman, George ^V. Houston, secretary. D. 

C. Hutchinson, representative Eighty-fifth dis- 
trict; J. A. Cox, probate judge; L. F. Fisher, 
county attorney; J. J. Browne, superintendent 
public instruction; J. M. Cunningham, clerk 
district court; J. M. Richardson, commissioner 
third district. 

M. V. B. Bennett, chairman central com- 
mittee. August 5, 1 87 1, J. J. Browne elected 
in the place of Bennett, resigned ; J. F. Waskey, 

October 21, 1871, Oswego; J. J. Browne, 
chairman. Sheriff, G. W. Franklin; treasurer. 

J. F. Waskey ; county clerk, George ^\^ Hous- 
ton ; register, Frank Campbell ; surveyi_)r. Wade 
H. Priohard ; coroner, G. D. Boon; commission- 
er first district, D. J. Doolen; third district. J. 
M. Richardson ; representative Forty-fourt'i 
district, Gilbert A. Cooper. 

J. J. Browne, chairman central committee, 

August 24, 1872, Oswego; J. J. Browne, 
chairman, J. F. Waskey, secretary. Demo- 
cratic and Liberal Republican conventions in 
session at same time ; H. L. Taylor, chairman, 
and J. M. Mahr, secretary Liberal convention. 
Each convention instructed its central commit- 
tee to confer and unite in calling a county con- 
vention to nominate a fusion ticket. 

October 18, 1872, court-house, Oswego; 
H. L. Taylor, chairman, J. J. Browne, secre- 
tar}'; Democratic-Liberal con\'ention. Senator 
Fifteenth district, William Dick; probate 
judge, Thomas FI. Bruner; county attorney. 
R. M. Donelly; clerk district court, J. H. 
Macon; superintendent public instruction, 
David Donovan: coroner, A. P. Jnhnsun; com- 
missioner scci 111(1 district, C. ]\[. Munrne: rep- 
resentati\-es, b^nrty-tliird district, T. C. Cory; 
Forty-fourth, Christian Lieb. 

No convention held in 1873. 

In 1874 the Democrats united .with Liberal 
Republicans, and held a Democratic-Reform 
convention, October 14, 1874, Labette Cicy ; 
\Villiam Dick, chairman. Senator Fifteenth 
district, J. M. Mahr, on first ballot; district 
clerk, R."C. Taylor, on first ballot, ..ver A. J. 
Gary; county attorney, J. C. Parkhurst, by ac- 
clamation; probate judge, H. C. Blanchard, on 
first ballot, over S. L. Coulter (not present) ; 
superintendent public instruction, E. H. Tay- 
lor, on first ballot, over Mary A. Higby; reo- 
resentative Forty-third district, William Dick, 
on first ballot, over C. M. Monroe and J. C. 
Merwin; representative Forty-fourth district, 


\\'. T. Cunningham and D. J- Di)i)len were 
successively numinated and declined, after 
which Henry Tibhets was nominated by ac- 

J. B. Lamb, chairman central cummittee. 

October 8, 1875, Oswego; R. M. Donelly, 
chairman. Dr. M. M. }*Iilligan, secretary. 
Treasurer. A. J. Cary, by acclamation ; sheriff, 
Nixon Elliott, on first ballot, over J. H. Macon 
and W. AI. Rogers; county clerk. L. C. How- 
ard, by acclamation; surveyor, Wade Prichard. 
by acclamation; register. R. C. Taylor, by ac- 
clamation; coroner, Dr. M. ]\I. Milligan, by ac- 
clamation ; commissioners, first district. D. J. 
Doolen; second. Christian Lielj; third. J. H. 
Martin ; representatives. Forty-third district, 
G. W. Graybill; Forty-fourth. H. G. Webb. 

J. B. Lamb, chairman central committee. 
T. B. J. Wheat, secretary. 

September 2Ti. 1876. court-house, Oswego; 
R. ]\I. Donelly, chairman, Nixon Elliott, sec- 
retary. Senator Fifteenth district, Angell Mat- 
thewson, by acclamation: county attorney, W. 
P. Talbot, on first ballot, over G. \\\ Fox; 
probate judge, D. J. Doolen. on first ballot, 
over Dr. J. Spruill ; clerk district court, I. H. 
Fry, by acclamation ; superintendent public in- 
struction, Mrs. Hattie Coleman, by acclama- 

G. W. Fox. chairman central cijmmittee, 
A\'. J. Herman, secretary. 

September 29. 1877. Central committee 
decided not to htjld convention. G, W. Fox, 
chairman, W. J. Herman, secretary. 

September 21. 1878, Oswego: G. W. Fox, 
chairman, J. B. Lamb, secretary. Probate 
judge, P. Y. Thomas; representatives, Forty- 
fourth district, J. H. Martin; Forty-fifth, H. 
C. Blanchard : clerk district court. J. K. Rus- 
sell ; county attorney. I. S. Jones ; superintend- 

ent public instruction J. Ccjvalt ; commissioner 
first district. D. J- Doolen. 

G. W. Fox, chairman central committee, 
D. H. Mays, secretary. 

August 25, 1879. Oswego; G. W. Gabriel, 
chairman, H. C. Hall, secretary. Treasurer, 
T. P. Waskey; sheriff. J. H. Macon; register, 
W. T. Berry ; county clerk, L. C. Howard ; sur- 
veyor. S. R. Southwick (W. H. Godwin sub- 
stituted) ; coroner, J. B. Lamb; commissioner 
second district, L D. Johnson. 

G. \X. Fox, chairman central committee, 
J. M. Hall, secretary. 

October 9, 1880, Oswego; G. W. Fox, 
chairman. F. C. Helsell, secretary. Commit- 
tee having consulted with committee from 
Greenback party, reported in favor of union 
on following-' basis ; Greenback nominees for 
senator, district clerk and superintendent to be 
indorsed, and the Greenbackers to withdraw 
their candidates for and indorse Democratic 
nominees for county attorney, probate judge, 
and representatives in Forty-fourth, Forty-fifth 
and Forty-sixth districts. Adopted. — County 
attorney. George F. King, on first ballot, over 
W. P. Talbott; probate judge, W. P. Talbott, 
on first ballot, over James Barton ; senator Fif- 
teenth district, Geo. Campbell; clerk district 
court, J. K. Russell ; superintendent public in- 
struction, ]M. T. McCarty indorsed; commis- 
sioner third district, .\. H. McCormick in- 

G. W. Fox. chairman central committee, 
F. C. Helsell. secretary. 

October 11, 1881. Central committee de- 
cided not to hold convention. Mr. Fox re- 
signed as chairman central committee, and J. 
M. Mahr was elected chairman. F. C. Helsell, 

August 12, 1882, court-house, Oswego; 


George S. King, chairman, C. F. Winton, sec- 
retary. Probate judge, A. G. Drake, by ac- 
clamation; county attorney, R. T. Hollovvay, 
by acclamation ; clerk district court, R. C. Tay- 
lor. Authorized committee to till vacancies. 

October 7, 1882. Central committee ac- 
cepted A. G. Drake's withdrawal as probate 
judge, and agreed to leave that place and also 
superintendent, vacant, and to support Green- 
back nominees. Nominated C. M. Monroe 
commissioner second district. 

J. M. Mahr, chairman central committee, 
George S. King, secretary. 

September 22, 1883, Oswego; J. M. Mahr, 
chairman, George S. King, secretary. Sheriff, 
J. P. Dejarnett, on first ballot, over J. J. Free- 
man and A. J. Mapes; treasurer, E. C. Dent, 
on first ballot, over J. F. Waskey; register, 
J. M. Cunningham, over C. M. Monroe, on 
first ballot; county clerk, F. W. Fry, on first 
ballot, over J. M. Bannan; surveyor, A. B. 
Bushnell, by acclamation; commissioner third 
district, M. E. Carson. 

W. H. Morris, chairman central commit- 
tee, George S. King, secretary. 

October 14, 1884, court-house, Oswego; J. 
R. Brown, chairman, W. H. Cook, secretary. 
Senator Ninth district, J. J. Kacidey; probate 
judge, F. M. Smith; clerk district court, J. 
M. Cunningham; no nominee for superintend- 
ent; W. H. Cook, commissioner first district, 

J. R. Brown, chairman central committee, 
J. M. Landis, secretary. 

October 28, 1884. Central committee ac- 
cepted the withdrawal of J. J. Kackley, and 
placed W. J. Conner's name in his place; also 
nominated George S. King county attorney, 
and J. Covalt, superintendent. Afterward 
Chairman Brown and others published a card 

denouncing action of committee in placing Con- 
ner's name on ticket, etc. 

October 6, 1885, Oswego; J. P. Dejarnett,, 
chairman, W. W. Fry, secretary. Treasurer, 
E. W. Ross; register, George Miller; sheriff,. 
H. R. Lewis; county clerk, J. S. Odell; sur- 
veyor, A. B. Bushnell ; coroner, T. A. H. Lowe ; 
commissioner second district. Lewis Goodwin. 

G. W. Gabriel, chairman central committee, 
J. M. Landis, secretary. 

October 12, 1886, opera house, Oswego; 
A. H. Garnett, chairman, I. H. Fry and A. 
W. Mackie, secretaries. Probate judge, G. W. 
Gabriel, by acclamation; county superintend- 
ent. G. Guy Morris, on first ballot, over 
Fanny Cooper; representative Twenty-ninth 
district, Gilbert A. Cooper. Motion carried to 
make no farther nominations, in interest of 
State and Congressional tickets. 

G. W. Gabriel, chairman central committee, 
A. H. Garnett, secretary. 

During this canvass Dr. Gabriel withdrew 
as candidate for probate judge, and the central 
committee placed J. J. McFeely on the ticket in 
his place. 

September 13, 1887. Oswego; A. H. Gar- 
nett, chairman, J. S. Odell, secretary. Treas- 
urer, James L. Wilson ; sheriff, Samuel Ledge- 
wood; register of deeds, I. PL Fry; county 
clerk, D. H. 'Martin; surveyor, A. B. Bushnell; 
coroner, Caesar Wilson. 

G. W. Gabriel, chairman central committee, 
A. H. Garnett, secretary. 

September 11, 1888, Mound Valley; G. W. 
Gabriel, chairman, J. F. Waskey, secretary. 
Senator Tenth district, R. L. Sharp, by ac- 
clamation; probate judge, J. W. Deatherage, 
by acclamation ; county attorney, F. M. Smith, 
by acclamation; clerk district court. E. W. 
Ross, by acclamation; superintendent, Fanny 



Cooper, by acclamation ; representatives, Twen- 
ty-eighth district, M. V. B. Davis; Twenty- 
ninth, George S. King; Thirtieth, W. G. 

J. F. Waskey, chairman central commit- 
tee, Geo. S. Liggett, secretary. 

September 26, 1889, Chetopa; E. C. Dent, 
chairman, F. M. Smith, secretary. Treasurer, 
J. F. Waskey ; sheriff, W. H. Swartzell ; regis- 
ter, L D. Highleyman; county clerk, L M. 
Hinds; surveyor, J. H. Dersham; coroner, A. 
H. Wells. 

J. M. Kleiser, chairman central committee. 

August 30, 1890, Parsons; J. M. Kleiser, 
chairman, J. J. Rambo, secretary. Clerk dis- 
trict court, Isaac M. Hinds; county attorney, 
George S. King. 

August 20, 1891, court-house, Oswego; J. 
F. Waskey, chairman, F. W. Frye, secretary. 
Treasurer, J. W. Galyen; sheriff, W. H. 
Swartzell ; register, W. S. Houghton ; county 
clerk, J. J. Freeman; coroner, George S. Lig- 
gett; surveyor, J. H. Dersham; commissioner 
third district, W. A. Huff. 

F. W. Frye, chairman central committee, 
George S. Liggett, secretary. 

September 29, 1892, Chetopa; George S. 
Liggett, chairman, A. J. Austin, secretary. 
The convention indorsed the full ticket thereto- 
fore nominated by the People's party. 

J. M. Landis, chairman central committee, 
J. F. Waskey, secretary. 

September 29, 1893, Mound Valley; G. W. 
Gabriel, chairman, J. W. Waskey, secretary. 
Treasurer, J. B. Montgomery, by acclamation ; 
county clerk, J. J. Rambo, over John W. Rick- 
art: sheriff, J, C. Arnold, over C. R. Walters 
and I. D. Highleyman; register of deeds. 
Frank F. Lamb, by acclamation; surveyor, C. 
R. Walters, by acclamation; coroner. Dr. A. 
B. Temple, by acclamation; commissioner first 

district, Jerome Callahan, by acclamation; 
high school trustees John Gilham, P. W. 
Shick, W. S. Jones, G. W. Gabriel, I. D. High- 
leyman, W. S. Huff. 

J. M. Kleiser, chairman central committee, 
J. F. Waskey, secretary. 

August 17, 1894, Parsons; J. O. McKee, 
chairman, Alf D. Carpenter, secretary. Pro- 
bate judge, Harry Levi; county attorney, I. 
D. Highleyman; clerk district court, John W. 
Rickart; superintendent public instruction, 
Mrs. Kate Southwick. 

G. W. Gabriel, chairman central commit- 
tee, J. D. H. Reed, secretary. 

September 12, 1895, Oswego; J. O. McKee, 
chairman, J. D. H. Reed, secretary. Treas- 
urer, J. W. Galyen; county clerk, J. D. H. 
Reed; sheriff, J. D. Jones; register of deeds, 
P. J. McGinley; coroner, George S. Liggett; 
commissioner third district, G. W. Gabriel. 

George S. King, chairman central commit- 
tee, J. D. H. Reed, secretary. 

September 24, 1896, Oswego; George S. 
King, chairman, J. D. H. Reed, secretary. 
The convention endorsed the whole Populist 

Charles M. Frye. chairman central com- 
mittee, C. A. Lamb, secretary. 

August 24, 1897, Oswego; W. P. Eddy, 
chairman, Alf D. Carpenter, secretary. Coun- 
ty clerk, E. H. Hughes; high school trustee, 
George S. King. The convention endorsed 
the remainder of the Populist ticket. 

C. A. Lamb, chairman central committee, 
Charles P. Garst, secretary. 

July 16, 1898, Parsons; C. S. Leinbach, 
chairman, George S. King, secretary. County 
attorney, I. D. Highleyman; probate judge, 
George S. King; clerk district court, A. R. 
Bradfield; superintendent public instruction, 
Mrs. Kate Southwick; coroner, (to fill va- 



cancy), Josiah Richmond; high school trustees^ 
Walter Phillips and W. H. Cook for full term, 
James E. Rice to fill vacancy; commissioner 
third district, W. H. Swartzell. 

W. P. Eddy, chairman central committee, 
A. H. McCarty, secretary. 

September 12, 1899, Parsons; W. P. Eddy, 
chairman, B. F. Goudy, secretary. Conven- 
tion endorsed the whole Populist ticket. 

W. P. Eddy, chairman central committee, 
A. H. McCarty, secretary. 

June 6, 1900, Parsons; A. H. McCarty, 
chairman, James Wilson, secretary. Senator, 
G. W. Gabriel, by acclamation;, superintend- 
ent public instruction, Mrs. Kate Southwick, 
by acclamation; high school trustees, George 
S. Kingover and C. H. Bowman; commission- 
er second district, Philip Gears, by acclama- 
tion. Endorsed the remainder of the Populist 

P. F. Smith, chairman central committee, 
A. H. McCarty, secretary. 


Usually there was a fusion of the Demo- 
cratic party with some other party on candi- 
dates for the Legislature ; the names here given 
are those for whom the Democrats generally 
voted. Sometimes they were nominated by a 
convention, sometimes indorsed by the con- 
vention, sometimes by the central committee, 
and sometimes no definite action at all was 
taken upon their candidacy. 

Forty-fourth District. — October 4, 1876, 
Parsons. A. Wilson nominated on first bal- 
lot ; vote was reconsidered, and on second bal- 
lot G. W. Gabriel nominated.— In 1878, J. H. 
Martin. — September 25, 1880, Parsons; W. H. 

Forty-HftJi District. — October 7, 1876, de- 
cided not to make any nominations. — October 
16, 1880, Oswego. Joint convention of Dem- 
ocrats and Greenbackers ; Thomas Wilson, 
chairman, George S. King, secretary. J. C. 
Murphy, on second ballot, over D. Doyle. 

Forty-sixth District. — October 7, 1876, 
Chetopa; A. G. Drake, chairman, W. J. Milli- 
ken, secretary. George E. Stone, by acclama- 
tion. — October 16, 1880, Chetopa. A. D. 

Thirty-third District.— In 1882, G. W. 
Gabriel; in 1884, W. H. Porter. 

Thirty-fourth District. — In 1882, George 
Campbell; in 1884, J. W. Deatherage. 

Thirty-Hfth District. — October 14, 1882, 
Chetopa, W. P. Wilson; in 1884, H. H. Lieb. 

Tzventy-eighth District.— In 1886, W. H. 
Utley; in 1888, — '■ — Davis. — August 30, 1890, 
Parsons; S. C. Rickart, chairman. Jas. Tan- 
ner indorsed. 

Tzventy-ninth District. — October 12, 1886, 
Oswego; Levi Metier, chairman, Walter Phil- 
lips, secretary. Gilbert A. Cooper, on first bal- 
lot, over E. Tanner. — In 1888, George S. King. 
In 1890, central committee indorsed P. A. Mor- 

Thirtieth District.— In 1886, R. S. Ly- 
barger; in 1888, R. S. Lybarger. In 1890, 
central committee indorsed candidacy of Alex- 
ander Duncan. 

In 1892 the county convention indorsed the 
Populist ticket, including the candidates for 
representative in both districts. In 1894 no 
representative conventions were held, and no 
action taken in county convention in reference 
to representatives. In 1896 the county con- 
vention indorsed the whole Populist ticket, in- 
cluding the candidates for representatives in 
both districts. 

Twenty-seventh District. — ^July 23, 1898, 


Parsons; C. K. Leinbach. chairman, James 
Wilson, secretary. G. W. Gabriel, by acclama- 
tion. — September 29, 1900, Parsons; J. L. 
Wilson, chairman, S. S. Huffman, secretary. 
Grant Hume, the Populist candidate, was in- 
dorsed by acclamation. 

Twenty-eighth District. — August 13, 1898, 
Edna; C. S. Carlton, chairman, A. H. Mc- 
Carty, secretary. J. F. Waskey, by acclama- 
tion. — ^July 29, 1900, Chetopa; George S. King, 
chairman, C. S. Carlton, secretary. M. I. 
Daviss, the Populist candidate, was indorsed 
by acclamation. 


October 23, 1877, city hall, Parsons; A. N. 
Sourbeer. chairman, A. H. McClear" secre- 
tary. Treasurer, A. J. Cary; sherifif, J. H. 
Macon; county clerk, L. C. Howard; register, 
H. E. Ingraham; surveyor, W. H. Prichard; 
coroner, B. D. Ellis; commissioner third dis- 
trict, P. W. Shick. 

F. A. Briggs, chairman central committee, 
A. S. Harper, secretary. 

April 6, . 1878, delegates from various 
Greenback clubs met at Parsons for permanent 
organization, and elected an executive com 
mittee, of which J. W. Briggs was made chair- 
man and S. M. Bailey, secretary. 

August 20, 1878, grove near Labette City; 
R. M. Donelly, chairman, S. M. Bailey, sec- 
retary. Probate judge, W. A. Starr, on first 
ballot, over Noah Guymon; county attorney, 
J. A. Ball, on first ballot, over A. B. Hacker ; 
superintendent, J. Covalt, by acclamation; dis- 
trict clerk, J. K. Russell, by acclamation; rep- 
resentative Forty-sixth district, J. M. Bannan. 

August 21, 1879. Labette City; J. O. Mc- 
Kee, chairman, J. W. Breidenthal, secretary. 
Sheriff, J. O. McKee, by acclamation; treas- 
urer, W. H. Porter, on second ballot, over John 

Hoffman. W. P. Wilson, and Noah Guymon; 
county clerk, S. M. Bailey, on first ballot, over 
W. P. Wilson; register, Lewis Goodwin, on 
first ballot, over Nelson Curl and J. ]. Mc- 
Feely; coroner, Moses Steel, by acclamation; 
surveyor, W. H. Godwin; commissioner sec- 
ond district, J. C. Murphy. 

M. Snook, chairman central committee. 

August 14, 1880, Parsons; D. Doyle, chair- 
man, W. H. Potter, secretary. Senator, George 
Campbell; clerk district court, J. K. Russell; 
probate judge, J. M. C. Reed; superintendent 
public instruction, M. T. McCarthy. 

J. J. McFeely, chairman central commit- 
tee, L. Garneau, secretary. 

October 16, 188 1, Mound Valley; J. J. Mc- 
Feely, chairman, George Campbell, secretary. 
Register, J. W. Breidenthal, on first ballot, 
over W. P. Wilson, T. J. Finley, and W. J. 
Millikin; treasurer, A. H. McCormick, on first 
ballot, over W. J. Millikin; county clerk, T. 
J. Finley, on first ballot, over J. Reasor and T. 
L. Cotton ; sheriff, W. P. Wilson, on first bal- 
lot, over John Hoffman; coroner, William 
Rowe; commissioner first district. D. Doyle. 

J. M. Bannon, chairman centra 1 commit- 
tee, J. W. Breidenthal, secretary. 

October 7. 1882, Oswego; J. J. McFeely, 
chairman, C. L. Albin, secretary. District 
! clerk, J. K. Russell, by acclamation; probate 
judge, J. J. McFeely, by acclamation; county 
attorney, no nomination; superintendent pub- 
lic instruction, J. Covalt, on first ballot, over 
Angelia Bishop and Mary Bradbury; coroner, 
W. J. Millikin, acclamation; representatives. 
Thirty-fourth district. George Campbell ; Thir- 
ty-fifth, W. P. Wilson; commissioner second 
district, M. Breidenthal. 

J. M. Bannan, chairman central committee, 
J. W. Breidenthal, secretarv. 

October 23, 1883. Mound Valley; J. W. 
Breidenthal, chairman. Treasurer, L. Gar- 


neau; sheriff, J. C. Murphy; register, W. 
Miller; county clerk, J. W. Fleming; coroner, 
U. Osborne. 

J. W. Breidenthal, chairman central com- 
mittee, L. N. Thompson, secretary. 

October 27, 1884, Parsons; representative 
Thirty-third district, W. H. Porter. 


Forty-fourth District. — August 17, 1878, 
Parsons. James H. Martin nominated. — Sep- 
tember 25, 1880, Parsons. James H. Martin, 
representative, and A. H. McCormick. com- 

Forty-tifth District. — August 14, 1878, 
Altamont. H. C. Blanchard. — October 16, 
1880, Oswego; Thomas Wilson, chairman, 
■George S. King, secretary. Joint convention 
of Democrats and Greenbackers. J. C. Mur- 
phy, on second ballot, over D. Doyle. 

Forty-sixth District. — 1878. Chetopa; John 
M.Bannan. October 15, 1880, Kingston. 
W. P. Wilson. 


September 24, Oswego. 1874; adjourned to 
October 6; C. Humble, chairman, Nelson Case, 
secretary. The convention indorsed the fol- 
lowing nominations that bad been made by 
party conventions; Willard Davis alnd J. G. 
Parkhurst, county attorney; J. D. McCue, dis- 
trict judge; H. C. Blanchard, probate judge; 
Mary A. Higby, superintendent public instruc- 
tion; J. G. Coleman, coroner: representatives, 

William Dick, district; Henry Tibbets, 

Forty-third ; J. C. McKnight, Forty-fourth ; J. 
J. Woods was nominated for senator Fifteenth 
district. The matter of indorsing S. L. Coulter 
for probate judge and H. C. Cook for clerk 
district court was left to be acted on by a com- 

mittee after investigation was had as to their 
temperance faith. 

August 15, 1876, Parsons; M. G. Brown, 
chairman, C. T. Smith, secretary. Senator, 
M. G. Brown; county attorney. Nelson Case; 
probate judge, S. L. Coulter; clerk district 
court, H. C. Cook; superintendent public in- 
struction, Hettie Coleman. 

August 24, 1882, on call of the Oswego 
Temperance Union, a meeting was iheld in a 
grove near Labette City; Rev. John Elliott, 
chairman, J. M. Bowman, secretary. Resolved 
to form the Labette County Prohibition Union. 
Favored only temperance men for officers, and 
demanded enforcement of the prohibitory law. 


September 30, 1891, Parsons; W. S. New- 
Ion, chairman, G. W. Marley, secretary. Treas- 
urer, W. S. Newlon; sheriff, J. B. Jones; 
register, Mary Scott; county clerk, T. O. Em- 
erson; commissioner, C. B. Bennett. 

August 6, 1892. Parsons; W. S. Newlon, 
ahairman, G. W. Marley, secretary. Senator, 
J. M. Magie; representatives, Twenty-sixth 
district, G. W. Marley. Twenty-seventh, B. F. 
Lucas; probate judge, O. F. Walker; clerk 
district court, James Beggs; superintendent 
public instruction, Mary Scott; commissioner 
second district, W. E. Snyder. 

W. S.' Newlon, chairman central commit- 
tee. G. W. Marley, secretary. 

August 12, 1893, Oswego; treasurer, J. 
F. Woolford ; county clerk. George W. Dough- 
man; sheriff, George Anthony; register of 
deeds, Mrs. Eva Riker. 

June 2, 1894, Mound \'alley; probate 
judge, E. A. Graham; clerk district court, C. 
F. Doughman; superintendent public instruc- 
tion. Miss Beebe Thompson. 



August 15, 1895, Oswego; representative 
Twenty-sixth district, John Thompson; repre- 
sentative Twenty-sixth district, Rev. W. S. 
Bundy; treasurer, A. B. Wilson; county clerk, 
James Beggs ; sheriff, D. B. Woolford ; register 
of deeds, Elizabeth Emerson. 


September 15, 1887, Parsons; W. H. Utley, 
chairman, W. J. Bryant, F. W. Dauth and A. 
W. Mackie, secretaries. Treasurer, W. H. 
Porter, on second ballot, over H. Leib, Alex- 
ander Duncan, A. H. Mickey, John Richard- 
son, Frank Briggs; county clerk, W. J. Milli- 
kin. on second ballot, over A. H. Mickey, C. 
C. Robbins, Milo Hildreth, A. Moore ; register, 
J. K. Russell, on second ballot over B. F. Rolls, 
Thomas Lawrence, C. F. Turner and W. F. 
Grierson; sheriff, W. P. Wilson, on third bal- 
lot, over William Cook, Ed. Foyle, J. R. Dun- 
can, Frank Briggs, Wm. Orr and D. W. Butler; 
surveyor, C. C. Robbins, on first ballot, over 
John M, Hart and Levi Ferg-uson; coroner, 
A. R. Clarady, on first ballot, over Peter 
Hogan; commissioner first district, S. N. 

W. H. Utley, chairman central committee, 
W. H. Porter, secretary. 

August 21, 1888, Chetopa; J. W. Breiden- 
thal, chairman, Geo. Campbell and A. A. King, 
secretaries. Senator Tenth district, George 
Campbell, on second ballot, over A. J. Hixon, 
W. J. Gillette and R. W. Wrigiht; clerk of the 
district court, L. F. Dick, on fifth ballot, over 
A. W. Mackie, R. S. Lybarger, J. M. Morgan 
and J. R. Hill ; probate judge, Nelson Abbott, 
on third ballot, over C. T. Bridgman, J. M. 
C. Reed, J. W. Evans, R. S. Lybarger, S. T. 
Cherry, J. R. Hill and John Richardson; coun- 
ty attorney. Jess Brockway, on second ballot, 

over J, J. McFeely, M. Byrne, G. W. Hen- 
dricks, C. C. Robbins, R. S. Lybarger; super- 
intendent public instruction, Mrs. Lucy Best, 
by acclamation. 

Wm. Cook, chairman central committee. 
Nelson Abbott, secretary. 

September 7, 1889. Parsons ; J. W. Breiden- 
thal, chairman, L. F. Dick, secretary. Treas- 
urer, W. H. Porter, by acclamation; sheriff, 
Wm. Cook, on second ballot, over E. A. Rich- 
creek, J. R. Duncan and W. P. Wilson ; county 
clerk, A. H. Mickey, on fourth ballot, over J. 

A. Jones and W. J. Millikin; register, J. K. 
Russell, on first ballot, over F. C. Turner, C. 
L. Albin and George Campbell; surveyor, A. 

B. Bushnell, by acclamation; coroner, Wm. 
Rowe, by acclamation. 

Wm. Cook, chairman central committee. J. 
R. Hill, secretary. 


Tzuenty-eighth District. — September 8, 
1888, at Parsons. A. J. Hixon, nominated by 
acclamation. — ^June 11, 1890, at Parsons. 
James Tanner, nominated by acclamation, 

Ttuenty-iiinth District. — September 8, 
1888, at Oswego; A. W. Mackie, chairman, A. 
A. King, secretary. George Pfaff, on first bal- 
lot, over Harmon and Milo Hildreth. — 

July 29, 1890, in connection with People'.":, 
county convention at Parsons. P. A. Mor- 

Thirtieth District.— -September i, 1888, at 
Edna ; J. H. Reasor, chairman, E. H. Breiden- 
thal. secretary. R. S. Lybarger, on first ballot, 
over C. W. Holman and Levi Ferguson. — 
July 29, 1890, in connection with People's 
county convention at Parsons. Alexander 



Parsons, Jul}' 29, 1890; E. A. Richcreek. 
chairman, A. H. McCormick and Harry Mills. 
secretaries. Clerk of district court, J. A. Jones, 
on second ballot, over I. M. Waldrop, R. A. 
Johnson. L. F. Dick, J. M. Morgan, W. N. 
McCoid and W. H. Porter; probate judge. 
E. A. Richcreek, on first ballot, over J. H. 
Reasor, A. J. Hixon. J. W. Harra'h, John Rich- 
ardson ; superintendent public instruction, Mrs. 
Lucy Best, by acclamation ; county attorney, 
J. R. Hill, on third ballot, over M. E. Williams, 
W. J. Gillette and George S. King; commis- 
sioner first district, Gilbert A. Cooper; repre- 
sentatives. Twenty-ninth district, P. A. Mor- 
rison; Thirtieth, Alexander Duncan. 

E. A. Richcreek, chairman central commit- 
tee, Harry Mills, secretary, 

September 3, 1891. Parsons; E. A. Rich- 
creek. chairman, Harry Mills, secretary. Treas- 
urer, Martin V. Davis, on second ballot, over 
John Richardson and Ben Johnson; sheriff, 
William Cook, on first ballot, over A. B. Funk. 
J. R. Duncan and A. Sharp; register, A. \V. 
Mackie, on first ballot, over George Blank, F. 
T. Deinst and W. N. McCoid; county clerk. 
D. H. Martin, on first ballot, over W. J. Milli- 
kin, I. N. Watson, and I. M. Waldrop; sur- 
veyor, A. B. Bushnell: coroner, J. H. Miller. 

Harry Mills, ohairman central committee, 
A. W. Mackie, secretary. 

August 9, 1892, Parsons; J. F. Hill, chair- 
man, L. F. Dick and Harry Mills, secretaries. 
Senator. John H. Riley, by acclamation; pro- 
bate judge, George Campbell, on third ballot, 
over E. A. Richcreek, A. J. Hixon and H. 
Summers; clerk disrict court, Jesse M. Mor- 
gan, on first ballot, over A. W. Jones and R. 
A. Johnson ; county attorney, M. E. Williams. 
on first ballot, over H. G. Webb; superintend- 

ent public instruction, Mrs. Lucy Best, by ac- 
clamation; commissioner second district, J. A. 

William Cook, chairman central commit- 
tee, D. H. Martin, secretary. 

August 26, 1893, Parsons; Dr. E. Tanner, 
chairman. Isaiah Brown, secretary. Treas- 
urer, M. V. Davis, by acclamation; county 
clerk, D. H. Martin, by acclamation; sheriff, 
George Carr, over I. N. Watson, A. F. Ed- 
wards, Benjamin Johnson and J. L. Masters ; 
register of deeds, Thomas Todd, over Leonard 
Rude, L. Brown, T. E. Dienst. J. H. Reasor 
and A. H. Mackie; surveyor, A. B. Bushnell, 
by acclamation; coroner, H. C. Hairgrove, by 
acclamation; commissioner first district (at a 
later date). Gilbert A. Cooper, by acclamation; 
high school trustees, the full board as appoint- 
ed by the county commissioners, viz. : Nelson 
Case, J. E. Vansant, W. A. Huff, Benjamin 
Johnson, William Scott and J. M. Birt. 

Dr. E. Tanner, chairman central committee. 

June 5, 1894, Oswego; J. M. Baunan, 
chairman, D. H. Martin, secretary. Probate 
judge, George Campbell, by acclamation; 
county attorney, M. E. Williams, by acclama- 
tion ; clerk district court, Henry A. Lamb, over 
Henry S. Atwood; superintendent public in- 
struction, Mrs. Ella Martin, over Frank Brady, 
Mrs. Kate Ellage, William H. Conner, A. W. 
Potter, Miss Beebe Thompson and Mrs. Hattie 
Ham; high school trustees, George Pfaff and 
A. J. Hixon, over F. C. Petrie. H. K. Baker 
and A. H. Mickey; commissioner second dis- 
trict (at a later date), J. C. Goodell, over Milo 

William Cook, chairman central committee, 
J. K. Russell, secretary. 

September 12, 189s. Oswego; E. A. Rich- 
creek, chairman. D. H. Martin, secretary. 
Treasurer, Henry S. Atwood, by acclamation; 


county clerk, E. A. Steel, over F. C. Petrie; 
sheriff, J. D. Jones, by acclamation; register 
of deeds, Isaiah Brown, over W. J. Hall and 
G. J. Coleman; surveyor. A. B. Bushnell, by 
acclamation; coroner, Dr. E. Tanner, by ac- 
clamation. — Dr. Tanner declined and Dr. J. 
B. Hill was subsequently substituted in his 
place ; high school trustees, G. J. Coleman and 
William Scott, by acclamation; commissioner 
third district (at a later date), G. W. Gabriel, 
over J. A. Jarboe. 

M. E. Williams, chairman central commit- 
tee, F. G. Martin, secretary. 

August i8, 1896, Parsons; J. I. Tanner, 
chairman, H. A. Lamb, secretary. Senator. 
George Campbell, over G. W. Gabriel and 
Gilbert A. Cooper; probate judge. Daniel Pfaff, 
over J. L. Masters and C. T. Bridgman ; coun- 
ty attorney, Frank Brady, over M. E. Williams 
and Frank F. Lamb ; clerk district court, John 
Mayer, over F. W. Frewert, W. D. Harvey 
and D. H. Martin; superintendent public in- 
struction, Mrs. Hattie Ham, over Mrs. Minnie 
Wells, Miss Mary Walker, W. B. Covalt, John 
Jones, E. L. McKnight and A. W. Potter; 
commissioner first district (at a later date), 

D. S. Romine, over T. A. Sprague; high 
school trustees. A. F. Edwards and Milo Hil- 
dreth over Stanley Poland, John Richardson 
and Josiah Richmond. 

A. F. Edwards, chairman central commit- 
tee, F. H. Atchinson, secretary. 

August 27, 1897, Oswego; F. H. Atchin- 
son, chairman, W. A. Disch, secretary. Treas- 
urer, Daniel Jennings, over Dr. Lee Williams 
and John M. Doughman; county clerk, E. H. 
Hughes (the Democratic nominee), indorsed 
by acclamation; sheriff, A. F. Edwards, over 
B. L. Jones and Samuel Richardson; register 
of deeds, J. L. Masters, over Theodore Dienst, 

E. L. McKnight, J. H. Reasor. W. H. Hazen, 

Leonard Rude and L. S. Alford; surveyor, A. 

B. Bushnell, by acclamation ; coroner, Will- 
iam Rowe, by acclamation; commissioner sec- 
ond district (at a later date), Philip Gears, over 
J. C. Goodell, J. B. Oliphant, F. C. Petrie. J. 
L. Gillette and Milo Hildreth; high school 
trustees, George S. King ( the Democratic 
nominee), indorsed by acclamation, and 'SI I. 
Davis, over A. J. Hixon, Israel Foster and H. 

A. F. Edwards, chairman central commit- 
tee, R. H. Atchinson. secretary. 

July 16, 1898, Parsons; J. I. Tanner, chair- 
man. Probate judge, Daniel Pfaff, n\er W. 

C. Burns and G. W. Hendricks ; county attor- 
ney, F. M. Brady, by acclamation; clerk dis- 
trict court, John Mayer, by acclamation ; super- 
intendent public instruction, Mrs. Hattie Ham, 
by acclamation; coroner (to fill vacancy), D. 
W. Mathews, by acclamation; commissioner 
third district (at a later date), T. J. Van 
Horn; high school trustees. \A^alter Phillips 
and Israel Foster for full term, and J. J. Jones 
to fill vacancy. 

J. A. Jarboe, chairman central committee, 
J. H. Curran, secretar}'. 

September 2, 1899, Parsons; David Oli- 
phant, chairman, W. A. Disch, secretary. 
Treasurer, David Jennings, over Dr. Lee \\^ill- 
iams ; county clerk, E. H. Hughes, by acclama- 
tion ; sheriff. A. F. Edwards, by acclamation; 
register of deeds. F. H. Briggs, over W. D. 
Harry and C. S. Fuller; surveyor, A. B. Bush- 
nell, by acclamation; coroner, George W. 
Smith, by acclamation; commissioner first dis- 
trict (at a later date), D. S. Romine. by ac- 
clamation; high school trustees, C. K. Lein- 
bach and Milo Hildreth, by acclamation. 

George Campbell, chairman central com- 
mittee. W. A. Disch. secretary. 

April 26, 1900. Parsons; J. I. Tanner, 


chairman, Dr. C. S. Bendure, secretary. Pro- 
bate judge, W. C. Burns, over John Sears and 
Grant Hume; county attorney, W. S. Hyatt, 
over George Campbell, M. E. Williams and 
Frank F. Lamb; clerk district court, B. F. 
Harrison, over W. A. Disch, John Bero and 
George Reasor; high school trustee, Milo Hil- 
dreth^ by acclamation. Balance of ticket left 
open for Democrats to fill. 

William Cook, chairman central committee, 
D. H. Martin, secretary. 

people's party district coxventions. 

Tz^'Ciitx-si.vtli District. — June 20, 1892, 
Parsons ; Dr. E. Tanner, chairman, H. C. 
Sourbeer, secretary. J. L. Humphrey on first 
ballot, over A. F. Neely and Daniel Pfaff.— 
August II, 1894, Parsons; J. I. Tanner, over 
Daniel Pfaff and J. W. Galyen. Mr. Tanner 
declined the nomination and a new convention 
was held at Parsons, September 8, 1894; Arch 
Piper, over Ed. Burtle. Mr. Piper dechned the 
nomination and a third convention was held 
at Parsons September 22, 1894; A. H. Mc- 
Cormick, over Ed. Burtle. — August 18, 1896, 
Parsons: M. E. Steel, chairman, William 
Thorne, Jr., secretary. Benjamin Johnson, over 
L. D. Oliphant and W. H. Thorne. 

Twenty-seventh District. — August 13, 
1892, Chetopa; Gilbert A. Cooper, chairman, 
M. E. Williams, secretary. P. A. Morrison, 
on first ballot, over John Ford. — August 18, 
1894, Altamont; J. H. Reasor, chairman, A. 
A. King, secretary. W. J. Kabrey, over John 
Ford.— .\ugust 22. 1896, Bartlett; J. H. 
Reasor, chairman, E. E. Gobble, secretary. 
Charles R. Walters, over John Newberry and 
J. C. McKnight.— July 23, 1898, Parsons; 
James Harris, chairman, J. E. Ryan, secretary. 
G. W. Gabriel (Democratic nominee) indorsed 

over Frank F. Lamb. — September 29, 1900, 
Parsons; J. I. Tanner, chairman, W. F. Gil- 
lette, secretary. Grant Hume over Dr. J. W. 
Tinder and Frank F. Lamb. 

Twenty-eighth District. — August 13, 1898, 
Edna; R. B. Claiborne, chairman, C. M. 
Doughman, secretary. N. S. Clark over Oscar 
Van Bibb. Subsequently, Mr. Clark withdrew 
in favor of the Democratic candidate. — July 
29, 1900, Chetopa; George PfafT. chairman, 
A. H. Mickey, secretary. M. I. Daviss, by ac- 


Sixteenth Senatorial District. — October — , 
1866, Republican convention held at Tola. Dr. 
J. ^^^ Scott was nominated over J. C. Carpen- 
ter and J. S. Waters. 

The Democratic convention was held at 
Humboldt, and Col. \Villoughby Doudna was 

October 15, 1868, Republican convenlirni 
met at Erie; R. W. Wright was chairman .md 
J. C. Redfield, secreary. J. C. Carpenter was 
nominated on eleventh ballot over E. R. Trask 
and A. A. Aiken. 

October 24, 1868, Democratic convention 
convened at Osage Mission, and F. M. Frost 
was nominated. 

September 29, 1870, Republican convention 
was held at Humboldt; J. M. Beardsley was 
chairman, and P. I. B. Ping, secretary. J. H. 
Crichton was nominated on tenth ballot over 
J. W. Dowe and G. P. Smith, of Allen county. 
A. Miller, of Wilson county, J. C. Carpenter 
of Neosho county, and H. W. Alartin, of La- 
bette county. 

October 6, 1870, Democratic convention 
met at Humboldt. J. M. Richardson, of La- 
bette county, was nominated over Moses Neal 
and others. 



September 21, 1870, Settlers' Protective 
Association held a convention at Prairie du 
Chien, in Neosho county ; G. W. McMillen was 
chairman, and George T. Walton secretary. 
Major H. C. Whitney was unanimously nom- 


In 1867 N. F. Acres and John R. Goodin 
were opposing candidates for judge of the Sev- 
enth judicial district. 

October 10, 1870, RqDublican convention 
met in Oswego, with four delegates each from 
Montgomery, Labette and Crawford counties, 
and five from Cherokee; T. E. Clark, chair- 
man, W. W. Jones, secretary. On the 64th 
ballot the delegates from Labette county 
changed their vote from W. P. Bishop to W. 
M. Matheny, and nominated him over W. P. 
Bishop. John T. Voss, and Thomas Harrison, 
as a candidate for judge of the Eleventh judi- 
cial district. H. G. Webb ran as an independ- 
ent candidate. 

In 1873 B. W. Perkins, H. W. Barnes, J. 
M. Scudder and J. G. Parkhurst were opposing 
candidates, each running independent. 

In 1874 a "Reform Convention" convened 
at Parsons, September 23d, with J. H. Water- 
man, chairman, and C. O. Stockslager, secre- 
tary. J. D. McCue was nominated on second 
ballot over J. N. Ritter, A. A. Fletcher, and B. 
F. Purcell. B. W. Perkins again ran inde- 

Septemljer 12, 1878, a Greenback conven- 
tion assembled at Parsons, and nominated J. 
F. Broadhead. Opposed to him at the polls 
were B. W. Perkins and W. B. Glasse, each 
running independent. 

On October 3, 1882. a Republican conven- 
tion met at Cherokee; J. R. Hallowell, chair- 
man. On the 264th ballot George Chandler 

was nominated over W. B. Glasse, John N. Rit- 
ter, and John T. Voss. Opposed to him W. 
M. Matheny ran as an independent candidate. 

In 1886 George Chandler was an independ- 
ent, with no opponent. 

A Republican convention assembled in In- 
dependence October i, 1889, with S. L. Coul- 
ter, chairman, and W. T. Yoe. secretary. 
John N. Ritter was nominated by acclamation. 
J. D. McCue ran independent. 

A Republican convention was held at Par- 
sons on September 11, 1890; George W, 
Wheatley, chairman, W. H. Coulter, secretary. 
A. B. Clark was nominated by acclamation. 
Opposed to him was J. D. McCue, as an inde- 
pendent candidate. 

The Republican judicial convention was 
held at Weir City, September 11 and 12, 1894; 
John N. Ritter, of Cherokee county, was chair- 
man and Wiley ^^^ Cook, of Labette county, 
secretary. Two hundred and twenty ballots 
were cast for A. B. Clark, of Montgomery 
county, Nelson Case, of Labette county, and 
A. H. Skidmore, of Cherokee county, but with 
no result ; Mr. Case then withdrew and the bal- 
loting proceeded, resulting in a tie between Mr. 
Clark and Mr. Skidmore ; finally, on the 227th 
ballot, Mr. Skidmore received the nomination. 
Opposed to Mr. Skidmore, J. D. McCue, of 
Montgomery county, ran as an independent 
candidate, being generally supported by Dem- 
ocrats and Populists. 

On June 11, 1898, both the People's par- 
ty and the Democrats held conventions in Os- 
wego, for the purpose of selecting a fusion can- 
didate for district judge; of the People's party 
convention, Jasper Swan, of Montgomery 
county, was chairman, and W- W. Campbell, 
of Labette county, secretary, while J. H. Keith, 
of Montgomery county, and J. C. Eddy, of 
Cherokee county, were, respectively, chairman 



and secretary of tlie Democratic convention. 
A conference committee decided to give the 
nomination to the Democrats. Thereupon, the 
Democratic convention nominated Thomas H. 
Stanford, of Montgomery county, over R. M. 
Cheshire, of Cherokee county, George S. King, 
of Labette county, and E. E. Sapp, of Chero- 
kee county. Mr. Stanford's nomination was 
then indorsed by the PopuHst convention. The 
RepubHcans held tlieir judicial comvention in 
Oswego, July 12, 1898. A. L. Wilson, of 
Montgomery county, was chairman and J. W. 
Iden, of Labette county, secretary. A. H. Skid- 
more, of Cherokee county, was renominated by 


farmers' convention. 
A Farmers' convention was called for and 
was held on October 17, 1873, at Labette City. 
It was a secret session. The following nomina- 
tions were made : Probate judge, Davis Vulga- 
more; sheriff, F. G. Burnett; treasurer, C. F. 
Smith; register, I. W. Patrick; county clerk, 
Sam. W. Collins; coroner, A. S. Spaulding; 
surveyor, S. R. Southwick; representatives, 
Forty-third district, J. L. Williams, Forty- 
fourth, Isaac Butterworth; commissioners, 
first district, D. J. Doolen, second, H. M. De- 
bolt, third, William Thornborough. 


On October 10, 1874, a Grange convention 
met at Labette City, which soon divided into 
two sections : one elected N. Cooper, chairman, 
and C. W. Stephenson secretary, and de- 
nounced political action ; the other elected J. J. 
Woods c'hairman and C. Merwin secretary, 
and nominated the following ticket: Senator 

Fifteenth district. John F. Hill ; probate judge, 
S. L. Coulter; clerk district court, H. C. Cook;, 
superintendent, Mary A. Higby ; representa- 
tives, Forty-third district, S. M. Canaday, For- 
ty-fourth, Henry Tibbets. 

"laboring men's CONVENTIONS." 

One was held at Parsons, on September 20, 
1875 ; B. D. Roberts was chairman part of the 
time, and Isaac Butterworth, a part ; J. L. Will- 
iamson, secretary. The following ticket was 
nominated : Representatives, Forty-third dis- 
trict, M. W. Reynolds, Forty-fourth, F. B. Mc- 
Gill ; treasurer, William Dick on third ballot 
over A. J. Cary, George Caldwell, and Fred 
Perkins; sherifif, Nixon Elliott on second bal- 
lott over W. C. Church, J. J. Freeman, and 
S. B. Abbott; register, R. C. Taylor; county 
clerk, L. C. Howard, by acclamation ; coroner, 
D. B. Grouse, by acclamation ; surveyor. Wade 
Prichard on first ballot over George Thornton ; 
commissioners, first district, J. F. Hill, second, 
C. M. Monroe, third, J. H. Martin. 

J. L. Williams was chairman of the central 

On October 9, 1877. at Keeler's school- 
house, a mass convention was held, of which 
Samuel Newell was chairman, and Newton 
Guymon, secretary. A ticket was nominated as 
follows : Treasurer, A. J. Cary ; register. Wash 
Knapp; county clerk, T. A. Fellows; coroner. 
Dr. W. S. Newlon; surveyor, ^^''ade Prichard; 
commissioner second district, H. M. Debolt. 

"people's mass CONVENTIONS." 

A convention -with the above title was held 
in the Methodist church in Mound Valley, on 
October 20, 1881 ; J. M. Cavaness was chair- 
man ,and T. C. Cory, secretary. The follow- 
ing ticket was nominated: Treasurer, A. J. 
Cary on first ballot over G. S. McDole ; regis- 



er, J. M. Cunning-ham on first 1)allot over 
J. W. Breidenthal and Thomas O'Hare. 
The RepubHcan nominees for sheriff, county 
clerk, surveyor and coroner were indorsed. 

Another "People's Mass Convention" was 
held on October lo, 18S4, at Altamont; B. R. 
Van Meter was elected chairman and S. M. 
Bailey secretary, and the following nominations 
were made : Senator Ninth district, W. J. Con- 
ner, by acclamation; county attorney, H. G. 
Webb, by acclamation ; clerk district court, C. 
L, Albin on first ballot over J. M. Cunning- 
ham; probate judge, J. M. Cunningham, by 
acclamation ; superintendent public instruction, 
J. Covalt. 

A "farmers' and laborers' convention" 
Was held at Altamont on August 20, 1886; A. 
M. Fellows was chairman, and J. W. Breiden- 
thal. secretary. After electing delegates to the 
State convention and calling a county conven- 
tion for Altamont on September 8th, it ad- 
journed. On September 8th the convention 
met as per adjournment; J. J. McFeely was 
chairman, and J. \\'. Briedenthal, secretary. 
A ticket composed of the following was nom- 
inated: Superintendent, Alice Metier; probate 
judge, A. T. Shrout; county attorney, H. G. 
Webb ; clerk district court, W. J. Millikin. A. 
M. Fellows was made chairman of the central 
committee, and R. S. Lybarger, secretary. 

October 9. 1886, another "Farmers' and 
Laborers' Convention" met at Parsons, and 
nominated W. H. Utley as rej^resentative for 
tlie Twenty-eighth district. 


Tlie rapid growth of the county is in a 
measure indicated by the increased vote cast 
from year to year. The first election held in 

Neosho county was in 1864, at which there 
were but 35 votes cast in the whole county. At 
this time there was probably no one in what 
is now Labette, county who had the legal quali- 
fications of an elector, but had there been there 
was no provision made for the casting of votes. 
It was not until July, 1866, that the commis- 
sioners of Neosho county established, voting 
precincts in what is now Labette county. Our 
citizens might have participated in the elec- 
tion in November. 1866, had they been disposed 
to do so, but as I haveelsewhere stated, there 
was a mutual understanding ])etween those re- 
siding in what is now Neosho county and those 
residing in what is now Labette county, that 
the latter would refrain from voting for the 
officers of Neosho county, and that at the en- 
suing session of the Legislature the county 
should be divided. However, at that election 
the people in the south half of the county voted 
for a full set of county officers for themselves. 
Of course this vote was without any legal sig- 
nificance. No record of the result was kept, 
and I have been unable to ascertain anytiiing 
in reference to the number of \'otes cast. C. 
H. Bent, who was elected to the Legislature at 
this time, was the only officer elected who was 
permitted to perform official duties by virtue 
thereof. I might here state that at this elec- 
tion tiiere were something over 300 votes cast 
in Neosho county. For state senator, J. W. 
Scott received 225 votes, and Willoughby 
Doudna received 82 votes. This is probably 
the average vote between the two parties in 
the county. The first legal election held in La- 
bette county was on April, 22. 1867. At this 
election a full set of county officers were elect- 
ed, to serve until the ensuing regular election in 
the fall ; and the question of locating the coun- 
ty seat was also voted on. The record of the 
canvass of this vote has been lost, and I have 



now no means of ascertaining the numlier of 
votes cast; but some time thereafter there was 
published what was said to be the correct vote 
on the question of locating the county seat, 
from which statement it appears that the en- 
tire vote cast on that subject was 380. This 
may fairly be presumed to be the total vote of 
the county at that time. 

At the November election in 1867 the can- 
vass does not show the total number of votes 
cast, nor the votes cast for each candidate, ex- 
cept for the office of judge of the district court. 
For this position N. F. Acres received 202 
votes, and J. R. Goodin 192 votes. On the 
question of locating the county seat there were 
cast 397 votes. This was probably the high- 
est number of votes cast at that election. At 
the election held November 3, 1868, each pre- 
cinct in the county returned its vote. The 
presidential electors received 783 votes; 617 
of which were cast for the Grant electors, and 
166 for the Seymour electors. The candidates 
for the several State offices on the two tickets 
received substantially the same proportion of 
votes. The political lines were not as strictly 
drawn on the county offices. 

On November 5, 1869, the board met to 
canvass the vote cast on the 2d of that month. 
For some informalities, which presented an ex- 
cuse but did not amount to a reason for their 
action, the commissioners rejected the vote of 
every precinct in the county except those of 
Oswego and Hackberry. If it had required 
the rejection of either of these to enable them 
to count in the parties whom they desired to 
have elected, it may be presumed that on some 
pretense it would have been done. By the 
course pursued a set of officers were declared 
elected who had been overwhelmingly defeated 
at the polls, and those who had been elected bv 
a large majority of the votes actually cast were 

deprived of their positions, some of them for a 
a year and some of them during their whole 
term. I do not mean to say that every officer 
declared elected had been defeated ; no record 
has been preserved of the complete vote, and I 
have no means at hand of ascertaining what 
the vote of the entire county was; but certain 
it is that the sherifif, treasurer, register of deeds, 
and a part of the commissioners who were 
elected were compelled to contest for their of- 
fices or to be deprived of them entirely. Mr. 
McCue, who had been beaten for county at- 
torney by a large majority, but who was de- 
clared elected, refused to qualify, and Mr. 
Waters, who had been elected but counted out, 
took the office without opposition. Some of 
those who had been counted out contested for 
the office, while others declined to go through 
the trouble and expense of litigation. After a 
protracted contest through ^11 the courts, the 
true result was finally ascertained, and those 
who were determined to secure their rights 
even at a sacrifice, were finally awarded their 

At the November election in 1870 as many 
as 1,706 votes were cast for some of the posi- 
tions, but generally the aggregate vote on any 
one office was a few short of 1.700. The Re- 
publican State ticket generally received about 
1,025 to 1,050 votes, and the Democratic can- 
didates about 640 to 660 votes; while on the 
county ticket the vote for the respective can- 
didates of the two parties was more nearly 

In 1871 there were 1,794 votes cast for 
sherifif ; of these G. W. Franklin, the Democrat- 
ic candidate, received 959. and L. S. Crum, the 
Republican candidate, 835. I. W. Patrick, the 
Republican candidate for register of deeds, 
was elected by a majority of 150. In 1872 the 
Grant electors received i,779 votes, and the 



Greeley electors 1.014, making a total vote on 
the national ticket of 2,793. The candidates 
on the two tickets for State offices received 
substantially the same proportion of votes. In 
1873 S. L. Coulter, the Republican candidate 
for probate judge, received 1,765 votes, while 
Davis Vulgamore, the Democratic candidate, 
received but 487. C. F. Smith, the Republi- 
can candidate for treasurer, had no opposition, 
and received 2.346. In 1874 the total vote was 
2,076. For the office of governor, Thomas 
A. Osborn received 1,108 votes, James C. Cus- 
ey 730, and W. K. Marshall T]. In 1875 the 
total vote was 2,450. S. B. Abbott, Republi- 
can candidate for sheriff, received 1,252 votes, 
and Nixon Elliott, the Democratic candidate, 
1,112. In 1876 the total vote was 3,529. The 
Hayes electors received 2,092, the Tilden elec- 
tors. 1,372, the Cooper electors 8, and the 
Smith electors 17. In 1877 but 2,683 votes 
vi^ere cast. For chief justice, A. H. Horton, 
the Republican candidate, received 1,562; Sam- 
uel A. Riggs. the Greenback candidate, 824; 
and W. R. Wagstafif, the Democratic candi- 
date, 253 votes. In 1878 the vote was 3,385. 
J. P. St. John, the Republican candidate for 
governor, received 1,594; J. R. Goodin, the 
Democratic candidate, 968 ; D. P. Mitchell, the 
Greenback candidate, 804. There were 3,102 
votes cast in 1879. The Republican candidate 
for treasurer received 1.591; the Democratic 
candidate, 886; the Greenback candidate, 574. 
In 1880 the total vote was 4,672. The Garfield 
electors received 2,721; the Hancock electors, 
1,462; and the Weaver electors, 420. In 1881 
the vote was 3,163. The Republican candidate 
for treasurer received 1,340; the Democratic 
candidate, 1,311 ; the Greenback candidate, 474. 
In 1882 the vote was 4.020. For govern)" 
St. John received 1,941 votes, Glick 1,669, ^"d 
Robinson 329. In 1883 there were 4,015 votes. 

The Republican candidate for treasurer re- 
ceived 2,057, Democratic candidate 1,571, the 
Greenback candidate 242. In 1884 the Blaine 
electors received 3,475, the Cleveland electors 
2,094, the Butler electors 316, and the St. 
John electors 149. In 1885 the vote was 3,- 
763. The Republican candidate for treasurer 
received 2,378 votes, and the Democratic can- 
didate 1,347. In 1886 the vote was 4,802. For 
governor, John A. Martin received 2,427 votes, 
Thomas Moonlight 2,195, and C. H. Brans- 
comb 125. In 1887 there were 4.799 votes 
cast. For treasurer the Republican candidate 
Teceived 1,903, the Union Labor candidate 2,- 

448, and the Democratic candidate 417. This 
was the first election in the county in which the 
Republican party received a general defeat. 
Not infrequently, one or more of the opposi- 
tion ticket had been elected, but at this elec- 
tion, with one exception, the entire Union La- 
bor ticket was elected. In 1888 the vote was 
6 072. The Harrison electors received 2,870 
votes, the Cleveland electors 976, the Streeter 
electors 2,125, ^"d the Fisk electors 85. In 
1889 the vote was 4,733. The Republican 
candidate for treasurer received 2,120 votes, 
the Union Labor candidate 2 086. the Demo- 
cratic candidate 507. In 1890 the vote was 
5,555. For governor, Humphrey received 2,- 
165 votes, Willits 2,434, Robinson 914, Rich- 
ardson 21. In 1891 the vote was 5,125. For 
treasurer the Republican candidate received 
2,333 votes, the People's party candidate 2- 

449, the Democratic candidate 275, the Pro- 
ihibition candidate 40. In 1892 the. total vote 
was 6,174. The Weaver electors received 3,- 
116 votes, the Harrison electors 2,950, and the 
Bidwell electors 93. In 1893 there were 4,- 
774 votes; most of the Republican ticket was 
elected, receiving about 2,150 votes, while the 
Populist candidates received about 2,020, the 



Democratic 330. and the Prohibition 76. In 
1894, of the 5,930 votes cast, the Republican 
candidate for governor received 2,817, the 
Populist 2,564. the Democratic 291, and the 
Prohibition 83. The vote on the county ticket 
did not greatly vary from this. In 1895 the 
vote was 4,972. The Republican candidate for 
sheriff received 2,546 votes, the Populist 2,- 
103, the Democratic 289. and the Prohibition 
109. In 1896 the Republican candidate for 
governor received 3.21 1, the Populist 3,648, 
the Prohibition 50, out of a total vote of 6,- 
952. On the presidential ticket, the Middle-of- 
the-Road Populists polled 30 votes, the Na- 
tionalists 9, the Gold Democrats 18, the Pro- 
hibitionists 35, the Republicans 3.186, and the 
Democrats and Populists combined 3,669. 
Most of the Populist county ticket was elected. 
In 1897 the vote was 5,804. The Populists 
and Democrats ihad a majority of about 50 to 
75 on most of the county ticket; the Republi- 
cans elected one or two candidates. In 1898 
the vote of 6,075 was divided as follows on 
governor: the Republican candidate received 
3,027 votes, the Populist 2,979, ^"d the Pro- 
hibitionist 69. The county ticket was divided 
between the Republicans and Populists, major- 
ities running to something like 100 on either 
side. In 1899 the Populists carried the elec- 
tion by about 500 majority. The total vote 
was 5,426. In 1900 there was a vote of 6,- 
727. There were four presidential tickets 
voted for. The Republicans had about 3.300 
votes, the Democrats about 3,400, the Prohi- 
bitionists 43, and the Socialists 18. The Re- 
publican candidate for governor had 3,169 
votes, and the Populist 3,558. Most of the 
Populist county ticket was elected by less than 
100 majority. 

The result of the votes which I have given- 
above in the several years fairly represents the 

average strength of each of the parties. Es- 
pecially in county matters the votes on differ- 
ent offices have varied quite largely, local and 
personal considerations entering into the result 
very much more than in State and national 


On June 5, 1867, an order was made di- 
viding the county into three districts as fol- 
lows : District No. i. townships 31 and ^2, 
in range 21 ; District No. 2, townships ^t, and 
34, in range 21 ; District No. 3, the remainder 
of the county. 

On July 7, 1870, a new division was made, 
and the several districts were constituted as 
follows: District No. i. all of range 21; Dis- 
trict No. 2, townships 33, 34. and 35, in all of 
the ranges west of range 21; District No. 3, 
townships 31 and 32, in all the ranges west of 
range 21. This division remained in operation 
until 1893. 

It is evident that between these two divis- 
ions another one was made which does not ap- 
pear of record; for at the November (1869) 
election the person elected from the first dis- 
trict resided in the second, and the person elect- 
ed from the second district resided in the first, 
as the districts were constituted in 1867. 

Under a new division made July 15. 1893, 
and which is still in operation, the county was 
divided as follows: the townships of Neosho, 
Montana, Oswego, Richland, Hackberry, Fair- 
view and Liberty, and the cities' of Oswego 
and Chetopa constitute the first commissioner 
district; the second district is composed of the 
townships of Mount Pleasant, Elm Grove, 
Howard, Canada, Mound Valley and Osage; 
the township of Labette. Walton and North, 
and the city of Parsons make up the third dis- 



Labette county, without any bill making it 
such, was recognized as the Eighty-fifth rep- 
resentative district from 1867, when our first 
member was admitted, to 1871, when the next 
apportionment was made, at which time it was 
divided into two districts, the northern half 
constituting the Forty-third and the southern 
part the Forty-fourth. In this apportionment 
Elm Grove township was entirely left out of 
any district, and it was not until 1873 that it 
was made a part of the Forty-fourth ■".istrict. 
We were a part of the Sixteenth senatorial dis- 
trict up to 1871, when we were made the Fif- 
teenth district. 

In the apportionment of 1876 we were con- 
tinued as the Fifteenth senatorial district, and 
divided into three representative districts, the 
northern portion being the Forty-fourth, the 
central portion the Forty-fifth, and the south- 
ern portion the Forty-sixth district. 

In 1881 we were made to constitute the 
Ninth senatorial district, and, commencing as 
before, on the north, the Thirty-third, Thirty- 
fourth and Thirty-fifth representative districts. 
In the 1886 apportionment we were consti- 
tuted the Tenth senatorial district, a^id the 
Twenty-eighth, Twenty-ninth and Thirtieth 
representative districts, numbering from the 

In 1891 the act of apportionment made us 
the Eleventh senatorial district, and gave us but 
two instead ,of three representatives, as we had 
theretofore had. The townships of Mound Val- 
ley, Osage, Walton, Labette, Liberty, North, 
Neosho and the city of Parsons, were made to 
constitute the Twenty-sixth representative dis- 
trict and the remainder of the county the Twen- 
ty-seventh district. 

In 1897, no change was made in the sena- 

torial districts. In the apportionment of the 
state into representative districts in that year, 
the townships of Mound Valley, Osage, Wal- 
ton, Labette, Liberty, North, Neosho and the 
city of Parsons were made to constitute the 
Twenty-seventh representative district, and the 
balance of the county, the Twenty-eighth rep- 
resentative district. 


Judge of District Court. — 1867, Will- 
iam Spriggs; 1868-69, John R. Goodin; 1870, 
William C. Webb; 1870-73, Henry G. Webb; 
1873-82, Bishop W. Perkins; 1883-89, George 
Chandler; 1889, John N. Ritter; 1890-94, Jer- 
ry D. McCue; 1895-1901, A. H. Skidmore. 

State Senator. — 1867-68, J. W. Scott; 
1869—70, John C. Carpenter; 1871-72, Henry 
C. Whitney; 1873-76, J. H. Crichton; 1877- 
80, Angeil Matthewson; 1881-84, W. B. 
Glasse; 1885-92, Charles H. Kimball; 1893- 
96, J. H. Reilly; 1897-1900, George Camp- 
bell; 1901, G. W. Gabriel. 

Representatives. — Eiglity-fiftli District : 
1867, Charles H. Bent; 1868, W. C. Watkins; 
1869, Dr. D. D. McGrath (on account of sick- 
ness. Dr. McGrath did not take his seat in the 
Legislature); 1870, Walter P. Bishop; 1871,. 
Dr. J. M. Mahr.— Forty-third District: 1872, 
J. J. Woods; 1873, W.'W. Harper; 1874, J. 
L. Williams; 1875, J- J- Woods; 1876, M. W, 
Reynolds. — Forty-fourth District: 1872, D. C 
Constant; 1873, W. H. Mapes; 1874, W. H, 
Mapes; 1875, R. W. Wright; 1876, H. G 
Wehh.— Forty-fourth District:* 1877-78, G. 
W. Gabriel; 1879-80, J. H. Martin; 1881-82 
J. B. Swart— Forty-iifth District: 1877-78, F 
A. Bettis; 1879-80, H. C. Blanchard; 1881-82, 

* This was the new Forty-fourth district, established by thar 


J. B. Swavt.— Forty-fifth District: 1877-78; F. 
A. Bettis; 1879-80, H. C. Blanchard; 1881-82, 
J. S. Waters. — Forty-sixth District: 1877-78. 
J. H. Hibbits; 1879-80, T. J. Calvin; 1881-82, 
T. J. Calvin.— Thirty-third District: 1883-84, 
G. W. Gabriel; 1885-86, David Kelso.— r/n>- 
ty-fourth District: 1883-84, J. S. Waters; 
1885-86, H. C. Cook.—Thirty-tifth District: 
1883-84, J. H. Crichton; 1885-86, J. B. Cook. 
—Tivcnty-eighth District: 1887-88, F. R. Mor- 
ton; 1889-90, W. W. Cranston; 1891-92, J. I. 
Tanner. — Tiuenty-Niuth District: 1887-88, J. 
H. Morrison; 1889-90, H. S. Coley; 1891-92, 
P. A. Morrison.— r/;/r/';V//i District: 1887-88. 
R. S. Lybarger; 1889-90, J. S. Hileman; 1891- 
92, Ale.x. Duncan. — Tzoenty-sixth District: 
1893-94, J. L. Humphrey; 1895-96, D. M. 
Bender; 1897-98, Benjt. Johnson; 1893-94, P. 
A. Morrison; 1895-96, W. J. Lough; 1897-98, 
Charles R. Walters; 1899-1900, G. W. Gabriel ; 
1901, Grant Hume. — Tzventy-cightli District: 
1899-1900, Thomas J. Flannelly; 1901. M. I. 

Probate Judge. — The party who was 
elected April 22, 1867, failed to qualify in 
time. June 5, 1867, Bergen Van Ness was ap- 
pointed, and reappointed July 3d; 1868, D. C. 
Lowe; January to September, 1869, Henry M. 
Minor; September to November, 1869, Merrit 
Read; November. 1869, to July, 1870, W. H. 
Whitlock; July to December, 1870, Walter P. 
Bishop; December, 1870, to March, 1873, B. 
W. Perkins; March, 1873, to July, 1880, S. L. 
Coulter; July, 1880, to January, 1885, Nelson 
Case; 1885-86. S. L. Coulter; 1887-90, T. J. 
Calvin; 1891-92. E. A. Richcreek; 1893-94, 
George Campbell; 1895-96, J. C. Richcreek; 
1897-98, Daniel Pfaff; 1899-1900, Lewis W. 
Grain; 1901, W. C. Burns. 

County Attorney. — 1867, W. J. Parkin- 
son; 1868, C. H. Bent, W. P. Bishop; 1869, 

W. P. Bishop. B. W. Perkins (J. D. McCue 
and J. H. Gunn. s])ecial county attorney) ; 
1870-72, J. S. Waters; 1873-74. E. C. Ward;, 
1875-76, WiUard Davis; 1877-80, J. S. 
Waters; 1881-82, Lewis C. True; 1883-84,. 
George S. King; 1885-86, J. D. Conderman;; 
1887-88, T. C. Cory; 1888, A. A. Osgood;. 
1889-90, John H. Morrison; 1891-92, Joseph 
R. Hill; May 20 to Nov. 12. 1892. Frank 
H. Atchinson; 1893-94, M. E. Williams; 
1895-96, Albert B. Switzer; 1897-1900, Frank 
Brady; 1901-, W. S. Hyatt. 

Superintendent of Public Instruction. 
—1867, John F. Newlon; 1868, Enos Reed; 
1869-1870, R. J. Elliott; 1871-72, J. W. Hor- 
ner; 1873-78, Mary A. Higby; 1879-80, J. 
CovaK; 1881-82, M. Chidester; 1883-86. Mrs. 
Anna C. Baker; 1887-88, Mrs. Anna Hicken- 
bottom; 1889-90, Miss Agnes Beaty; 1891-94, 
Mrs. Lucy Best; 1895-96, Mrs. Ida Martin; 
1897-98, Mrs. Hattie Ham; 1899-1900, Annie 
S. Arnold; 1901-, Mrs. Kate Southwick. 

Register of Deeds. — 1867, Elza Craft; 
1868-69, Charles Beggs; 1870-71, James W. 
Peace; 1872-81, I. W. Patrick; 1882-83, J- 
M. Cunningham; 1884-87, Asa Smith; 1888- 
89, J. K. Russell; 1890-91, J. A. Flora; 1892- 
93, Andrew W. Mackie; 1894-97, H. H. 
Graue; 1898-. A. D. Swanwick. 

Sheriff. — 1867, Benjamin A. Rice; 1868: 
to April 5, 1869, John N. Watson; 1869, Frank 
D. Howe; 1870, John T. Weaver; October, 
1870-71. Joseph C. Wilson; 1872-75, G. W. 
Franklin; 1876-77, S. B. Abbott; 1878-79, J. 
H. Macon; 1880-83, D. M. Bender; 1884-85, 
Jonas T. Lampson; 1886-87, C. B. Woodford; 
1888-89, Jonas T. Lampson; 1890-93. Will- 
iam Cook; 1894-97, John W. Bennett; 1898-, 
A. F. Edwards. 

County Surveyor. — 1867, Z. Harris; 
1868 to April 5. 1869, S. R. Southwick; April 


5, 1869, to 1871, E. G. Davidson; 1872-73, 
Wade H. Prichard; 1874-75, Samuel Terrill; 
1876-77, Wade H. Prichard; 1878-79, George 
Thornton; 1880-81, J. M. Wells; resigned in 
September, 1881, and B. R. Cunningham was 
appointed; 1881-85, B. R. Cunningham; 1886- 
-87, W. W. Dentler; 1888-89, C. C. Robbins; 
1890-91, J. W. Boggess; 1892-93, A. B. Bush- 
nell; 1894-97, E. P. Bayless; 1898-99, A. B. 
Bushnell; 1900-, E. P. Bayless. 

County Assessor. — April 22, 1867, Fran- 
cis Wall elected, but failed to qualify; A. W. 
Jones appointed; 1868, J. R. Morrison. 

Clerk District Court. — 1867-68, R . S. 
Cornish; 1869-70, Robert Steel; 1871-72, D. 
S. Morrison; 1873-74, R. J. Elliott; 1875-84. 
H. C. Cook; 1885-88, E. B. Baldwin; 1889-90, 
Colin Hodge; 1891-92, J. A. Jones; 1893-96, 
Elmer C. Clark; 1897-1900, John Mayer; 
1901-, J. W. Weaver. 

County Treasurer. — April to September, 
1867, C. C. Clover; September 3, 1867, James 

C. Watson appointed, but failed to qualify; 
October, 1867, to July, 1868, R. M. Bennett; 
1868-69, Henry C. Bridgman; January to Oc- 
tober, 1870, Wm. Logan; 1870-72, Henry C. 
Bridgman; 1872-76, Charles F. Smith; 1876- 
80, George M. Caldwell; 1880-82, George 
Thornton; 1882-84, Geo. M. Caldwell; 1884- 
88, C. W. Littleton; 1888-90, W. H. Porter; 
1890-92, William Slaughter; 1892-94, Martin 
V. Davis; 1894 to November 21, 1895, when 
he resigned, J. R. Monroe, — his term was 
filled out by H. S. Atwood, who was appointed 
November 21, 1895, and served until October 
13. 1896; 1896-98, E. W. Minturn; 1898-, 
David Jennings. 

County Clerk. — March to July, 1867, 
Austin T. Dickerman ; July to December, 1867, 

D. W. Clover; January to November, 1868, 
Charles E. Simons; November .20, 1868, to 

January 6, 1869, Charles C. Beggs; January 
6 to November, 1869, John D. Coulter; No- 
vember, 1869-79, L. C. Howard; 1880-81, W. 
H. Keirsey; 1882-85, Frank W. Felt; 1886- 
87, W. W. Cook; 1888-89, W. J. Millikin; 
1890-91, Geo. W. Tilton; 1892-93, D. H. 
Martin; 1894-97, J. F. Thompson; 1898-, E. 
H. Hughes. 

Auditor. — W. A. Starr. July 14, 1882, to 
his death, December 14, 1883; W. B. Glasse, 
March 4, 1884-88; George S. King, January 
3 to November 27, 1891. 

Health Officer. — June i, 1885, to April 
13, 1891, Elmer E. Liggett; April 13, 1891-92. 
L. T. Strother; 1893-95, E. Tanner; 1896, 
C. Rockhold; 1897, A. B. Temple: 1898, 
George S. Liggett; 1899, A. B. Temple; 1900, 
E. Tanner; 1901, T. B. Allison. 

Coroner. — 1867-69, George W. Kings- 
bury; 1870-71, J. H. Logan; 1872, J. F. New- 
Ion; 1873, William Pinkerton; 1874-77, D. B. 
Grouse; 1878-79, W. R. Moore; 1880-81, W. 
W. Liglish; 1881-82, Lewis Peterson, who re- 
signed in 1882, and P. Davis was appointed; 
1883-87. E. W. Dorsey; 1888-89, A. A. Clar- 
ady; 1890-91, T. J. Finley; 1892-93, J. H. 
Miller; 1894-95, T. J. Finley; 1892-97, J. W. 
French; 1898, William Roe, who died before 
'his term of office expired, — D. N. Mathews 
was appointed April 30, 1898, to fill the term 
until the next general election; 1899, J. W. 
French, elected to fill William Roe's unexpired 
term; 1900-, G. W. Smith. 

County Commissioners. — March 10, 
1867. Governor Crawford appointed Samuel 
W. Collins, Charles H. Talbott and Bergen 
Van Ness commissioners to organize the coun- 
ty. April 22, 1867, William Shay, David C. 
Lowe and Nathan Ames were elected; Mr. 
Shay failing to qualify, John G. Rice was ap- 
pointed in his place, 1868, ist, William Logan; 


2d, Isaac Butterworth; 3d, James F. Moles- 
worth. 1869, 1st. William Logan; 2d, Elisha 
Hammer; 3d, James F. Molesworth. 

Subsequent to 1869 the commissioners were 
as follows: First District: 1870. William 
Steel; 1871, Gilbert Martin; 1872-77, D. J. 
Doolen: 1878, H. S. Coley; 1879-81, D. J. 
Doolen; 1882-84, W. G. Hoover; 1885-90, D. 
A. Jones; 1891-93. Gilbert A. Cooper; 1894- 
96, D. U. Watson; 1897-, D. S. Romine.— 
Second District: 1870-71, J. W. Morey; No- 
vember, 1 87 1, Abner De Cou was elected, but 
died before taking his seat; February 10. 1872- 
y^, George Foland; 1874-75, H. M. Debolt; 
1876-77, C. Leib; 1878-79, H. M. Debolt; 
1880-82, A. N. Russell; 1883-84, M. Breiden- 
thal ; April 5, 1884, Mr. Breidenthal died, and 
E. B. Baldwin was appointed in his place, and 
served from April 18 to December 3, 1884; 
December 3, 1884-88, Lewis Goodwin; 1889- 
1894, Milo Hildreth; 1895-97, J- C. Goodell; 
1898-, Philip Gers.— Third District: Novem- 
ber 3, 1869, J. P. Hutton declared elected, but 
died before qualifying; July 7. 1870, W. H. 
Carpenter was appointed; November, 1870, J. 
M. Richardson was elected, but Carpenter 
claimed there was no vacancy, and Richard- 
son never took his seat ; W. H. Carpenter con- 
tinued to serve until the following November 
election; November, 1871-73. William Dick; 
1874-77. W. A. Starr; 1878-80, P. W. Shick; 
1881-83, J. J. Henderson; 1884-89. J. E. 
Brooks; 1890-92, J. W. Scott; i89?-oc. J. A. 
Jarboe; 1896-98. G. W. Gabriel; 1898-, R. D. 

List and Terms of Chairmen of Board of 
County Commissioners. — 1867. David C. 
Lowe; 1868, William Logan; 1869, James F. 
Molesworth; 1870, William Steel; November 
14, 1870. to January 12, 1871. J. W. Morev; 
1 87 1, W. H. Carpenter; November, 1871, to 

January 1872, J. W. Morey; 1872-73, Will- 
iam Dick; 1874-77, D. J. Doolen; 1878. H. S. 
Coley; 1879-81, D. J. Doolen; 1882-83, J- 1- 
Henderson; 1884, W. G. Hoover; 1885-86, T. 
E. Brooks; 1887, D. A. Jones; 1888-89, J- E. 
Brooks; 1890, D. A. Jones; 1891-92, Milo Hil- 
dreth; 1893, Gilbert A. Cooper; 1894, Milo 
Hildreth; 1895, J- A. Jarboe; 1896, D. U. 
Watson; 1897, J. C. Goodell; 1898, G. W. 
Gabriel; 1899, D. S. Romine; 1900, Philip 
Gers; 1901, R. D. Talbot. 


October 10, 1882, to July 11, 1S91, bank 
of C. M. Condon; July 11. 1891, First National 
Bank of Oswego up to $50,000, and Oswego 
State Bank for amounts beyond what the Na- 
tional Bank was to have. There have since 
been changes, the Parsons banks, as well as 
those in Oswego being made depositories. 


1868, January 14th, proceedings ordered 
published in Humboldt Union; subsequently 
the Neosho Valley Eagle was established at 
Jacksonville and did a part of the county print- 
ing; later the Oswego Register was established 
and did most of the county printing; i86g, 
Register; 1870, Register; 1871, Advance and 
Register; 1872, Advance; 1873, Advance; 
1874, Independent; 1875, Register, during year 
transferred to Independent; 1876, Herald; 
1S77, Independent; 1878, Independent; 1879, 
Independent; 1880, Democrat; 1881, Inde- 
pendent; 1882, Independent; 1883, Independ- 
ent; 1884, Republican; 1885, Independent; 
1886, Independent and Democrat; 1887, Bee 
and Sun; 1888, Bee and Sun; 1889, Inde- 
pendent and Sun; 1890, Independent and Sun; 



1 89 1, on January 9th the Independent was 
designated as the official paper ; this order was 
revoked on February 9th, and an order made 
tliat Mills' IVcckly World be the official paper, 
and on February loth this order was revoked 
and another one made designating the Labette 
County Statesman as the official paper; 1892- 

October 2, 1893. Mills' Weekly World; Oc- 
tober 2, 1893-January 8. 1894. Labette County 
Times-Statesman ; ]^nu2,xy ?>. 1894-January 14, 
1896, Parsons Independent ; January 14, 1896- 
February 3. 1897, Parsons Eclipse; February- 
3, 1 897-, Oswego Blade. 


The license system was not put in operation 
in this county without a vig-orous opposition 
on the part of the temperance people. So far 
as I can ascertain, the first attempt to obtain 
license to sell liquor in this county was in the 
summer or fall of 1867, when J. Q. Cowell, 
who was running- a small drug- store in Os- 
weg-o, got a sufficiently signed petition to 
authorize the issuance of a license; but before 
it was presented to the board, H. C. Bridgman, 
who was conducting a general store next to his, 
in some way got possession of the petition and 
destroyed it. This seems to have been the last 
attempt made by Cowell to get a license, but 
probably not the last attempt to sell liquor. 
The sales, however, if made, were without any 
authority of law. 

Some time after tliis transaction John R. 
Clover got a petition containing sufficient sig- 
natures to authorize a license to be issued to 
him, but Mrs. Augusta Herbaugh managed to 
get possession of it, and it suffered a fate sim- 
ilar to Mr. Cowell's. 


In the county was kept at the northwest corner 
of block 39, in Oswego, by Jones & Stewart, 
who on January 11, 1868. presented to the 
board of county commissioners a petition said 
to contain the names of a majority of the res- 
idents of Oswego township, asking that a li- 
cense to sell liquor be granted to them. The 

board granted this petition, and directed the 
clerk to issue license for one year, upon the 
payment by said Jones & Stewart of the sum 
of $50. This firm soon sold out to H. E. 
Porter and A. J. DeCou, the latter of whom 
in a few weeks sold his interest to his partner, 
and thereafter Mr. Porter ran the business 
alone. This saloon had been running less than 
seven months, when, on the night of August 
6th, J. C. Wheeler and Charles Van Alstine, 
with several more persons, spent the evening 
there in drinking and carousing until after 
midnight. Van Alstine and Wbeeler got into 
a dispute over the question of indebtedness of 
the latter to the former, and after leaving the 
saloon, under the influence of liquor, remained 
by the side of the building disputing for some 
time, until all the other parties had gone away, 
and H. E. Porter, the bar-keeper, had closed 
the door. The next morning Wheeler was 
found by the saloon unconscious, his head 
bruised by blows from a club, from which he 
soon thereafter died. Van Alstine was ar- 
rested, and at the next term of court was con- 
victed of murder in the second degree and sen- 
tenced to the penitentiary for ten years. I am 
informed that his family was left to be provid- 
ed for by the public, as was also the family of 
Wheeler. Subsequently the commissioners 
paid the expense of sending Wheeler's children 
back to their friends in Ohio. The cost to 
the county of convicting and sending Van 



Alstine to the penitentiary, and caring for the 
destitute families of the murderer and his vic- 
tim, is said to have been over $2,000. Com- 
paring this sum paid out of the public treasury, 
for a matter which may fairly be said to be 
traceable directly to the saloon as its cause, 
with the paltry sum of $50 paid into the county 
treasury for the saloon license, the transaction 
would not look like a very profitable one for 
the public to engage in. 

The next party authorized by the board to 
make drunkards according to law was William 
B. Gregory, who on May 16, 1868, presented 
to the board a petition signed by 182 citizens 
of Richland township, asking that he be grant- 
ed a dramshop license for said township. 
WHiereupon the board ordered that, upon the 
payment of $100 into the county treasury, li- 
cense be granted him for one year from that 
date. The last action of the board preceding 
their granting Gregory license to keep a sa- 
loon was their appointment of him to the office 
of constable of said township. 

The practical workings of this licensed sa- 
loon do not seem to have been altogether satis- 
factory to the people of Chetopa. On Febru- 
ary 9, 1869, a large temperance meeting was 
held at Spaulding's hall, at which stirring tem- 
perance speeches were made by a number of 
citizens, and also by Rev. C. R. Rice, who had 
remained over a day or two after his quarterly 
meeting. Strong resolutions were passed de- 
nouncing those who were disgracing the town 
with their drunkenness, and calling upon the 
officers to see that the law was enforced. Tem- 
perance meetings were frequently held subse- 
quently to this, and a temperance organiza- 
tion was effected. About the same time at- 
tempts were made by other parties to obtain 
license, but with less success. 

On July 21, 1868, a petition dated July 6, 

1868, was presented to the board, asking them 
"to grant Charles Sipes a license to keep a 
grocery and first-class billiard saloon" in Os- 
wego; whereupon, "the board having consid- 
ered said petition, and being satisfied that said 
petition is not made by a majority of the resi- 
dents in said township as the law requires, and 
that the masses of the citizens are opposed to 
the granting of dramshop license in said town- 
ship, as evidenced by the remonstrance pre- 
sented to this board, therefore said petition is 
not granted." On the same day the record 
shows that W. S. Newlon presented to the 
board the following petition : 

"To the County Board of Labette County, 
Kansas: The undersigned, residents of Os- 
wego township, over the age of 21 years, re- 
spectfully ask you not to grant license to estab- 
lish a dramshop at Oswego at your next meet- 

And then follows their action thereon : 

"And the board havine duly considered the 
same, do and it is hereby ordered that the 
board will not bind or circumscribe its powers, 
but will endeavor to act at all times and upon all 
subjects according to law and justice. Where- 
fore, said petition is not granted." 

There seems to have been no other saloon 
license granted until January 7, 1869, when 
John R. Clover and H. H. Stanley were grant- 
ed a license on a petition said to contain the 
names of a majority of the citizens of Oswego 
township. The record shows that Commis- 
sioner Molesworth voted to fix the amount 
charged for the license at $500, but that Com- 
missioners Logan and Butterworth agreed to 
charge but $100 therefor. A year thereafter 
these parties had their license renewed by the 
commissioners, at the same price. 

After 1870, Oswego and Chetopa being 
organized under city government, the man- 



ner of regulating the sale of liquor in these 
places passed from the board of county commis- 
sioners to that of the city council. The juris- 
diction of the commissioners was confined to 
the rest of the county. 

The first record which I have found of a li- 
cense being applied for outside of Richland and 
Oswego townships was that of Thomas Phillips 
to keep a saloon in Montana ; this was at the 
meeting of the board in January, 1872. A re- 
monstrance was also presented, and the license 
was refused. However, at their meeting in 
July of the same 3^ear the board granted a 
license to William T. Trapp, for a fee of $150. 
This was not the first saloon, however, that was 
kept in Montana. Several parties at different 
times were engaged in the saloon business who 
conducted it in defiance of law. 

At the January, 1874, meeting of the board, 
two saloons were authorized to be licensed in 
Montana, at a fee of $100 each — one to be 
kept by Edward Wilcox, and the other by Will- 
iam T. Trapp and Andrew Dixon. 

On February 2, 1875, J. S. Waters pre- 
sented the- petition of himself and 168 others, 
asking that license be granted to Andrew Dix- 
on, and on the same day the petition was grant- 
ed, the fee to be charged therefor to be $300; 
but soon thereafter Mr. Waters appeared be- 
fore the commissioners and recommended that 
the fee be but $100. On consideration, the 
board finally fixed the fee at $200. In 1876 
Dixon's license was again renewed, the fee 
charged this time being but $100. It was not 
long after its renewal until Mrs. Waters ap- 
peared before the board and showed that some 
of the names on the petition for license were 
not legal petitioners, and she succeeded in get- 
ting the board to make an order revoking the 
license. At the next meeting, however, Mr. 
Dixon appeared with his attorney before the 

board, and by making them believe that they, 
had no authority to revoke a license once grant- 
ed, induced them to rescind their former action 
and leave his license in force. 

It was not long after the town of Labette 
was started until saloons were opened and run 
without the sanction of law, and yet without 
receiving any great amount of molestation 
from the law officers. 

During 1872 and 1873 there was little or- 
ganized effort at any place in the county to 
prevent the obtaining of license, or for the pur- 
pose of seeing that the law against illegal sales 
was practically enforced. Some temperance 
meetings were held, and some protests were 
made by the temperance people, but nothing 
very effective was done. 


The spring and summer of 1874 was one 
of the most exciting times upon the temperance 
question that had ever been known in the 
county. The spirit of the "crusaders," which 
in many places in the East had led the women 
to make raids on the saloons and pour liquor 
into the gutter, manifested itself in this county 
in a milder but scarcely less determined form. 
No saloons were raided, but in Oswego the 
women held prayer meetings in the churches, 
and visited the saloons and requested the jiro- . 
prietors to give up their business. Of course 
these requests were not complied with. But 
the ladies' organization was kept up, the en- 
tire city was thoroughly canvassed, immense 
petitions were secured praying the council to 
issue no license at all, and demanding that the 
law, requiring a petition of a majority of the 
residents of the ward to be presented before a 
license should be issued, should be enforced. 
At that time the law of the State required a 



petition of a majority of the residents of the 
township or ward, male and female, to be pre- 
sented requesting^ such action before any dram- 
shop license could be granted, but provided 
that the mayor and council of cities of the first 
and second class mioht, liy ordinance, dis- 
pense with such petition. At the request of the 
ladies the mayor called a special meeting of 
the council, which was held on May 4, 1874, 
at which time a large delegation of ladies ap- 
peared before the council and presented their pe- 
titions, and 'had several arguments made in fav- 
or of carrying out the spirit expressed therein. 
Prior to this no ordinance had been passed dis- 
pensing with the necessity of a petition, but the 
council had entirely disregarded the law requir- 
ing a petition, and had uniformly granted li- 
cense on the simple petition of the applicant 
'himself. It nov/ being apparent that such action 
would not be tolerated, at the close of the argu- 
ment in favor of granting the ladies' petition, a 
motion was made instructing the committee to 
prepare and present an ordinance to dispense 
with the necessitv of a petition by a majority 
of the residents of the ward, as they were 
authorized to do by statute. The vote on the 
passage of this motion resulted in a tie of the 
council, and the mayor gave the casting vote 
in opposition thereto, thus establishing the rule 
that licensed saloons could not exist in any 
ward until a majority of the adult residents, 
thereof, male and female, should petition there- 
for. For this action the mayor received a vote 
of thanks from the ladies' association. 

Less than a week later another meeting of 
the council was called, at which an ordinance 
dispensing with the necessity for a petition con- 
taining the names of a majority of the resi- 
dents of the ward before a license could be 
granted was introduced, and on motion to 
adopt the same the vote of the council, as at 

the previous meeting, stood a tie. and the 
mayor gave the casting vote in favor of its 
passage, and thereby inaugurated the policy in 
the form of law, which since the incorporation 
of the city had been practiced in defiance of 
law, of allowing the' mayor and council to grant 
license without an express wish of the people 
therefor. This action on the part of the mayor 
and council created great excitement. A public 
meeting was immediately called, and strong 
resolutions of disapprobation of this action 
were unanimously passed. Temperance meet- 
ings continued to be held and public sentiment 

At the time Oswego was having this earn- 
est action, rousing temperance meetings were 
held weekly at Parsons, and were addressed 
by leading and influential citizens, as well as 
by the clergy. A little later, similar steps were 
taken at Chetopa. Public meetings were held 
and speeches made disapproving the licensing 
of saloons, and petitions were circulated and 
largely signed asking the council to grant no 
license until petitioned for by a majority of 
the residents of the ward as required by law. 
These petitions, however, were unavailing, and 
at the close of the month a large number of 
saloons were licensed over the earnest protest 
of the temperance people. 

The temperance people were now intent on 
preventing the issuance of license in the cities 
unless the same were petitioned for by a ma- 
jority of the residents of the ward ; and at the 
county temperance convention held on Octo- 
ber 6. 1874, on motion of Nelson Case it was 
unanimously — 

"Resolved^ That we are in favor of the im- 
mediate repeal of the proviso of section i of 
the dramsihop act, and request our entire dele- 
gation in the Legislature to use their utmost 
exertions to secure such result." 



Early in 1874 a party decided it would be 
a profitable thing to open a saloon in Mound 
Valley, and set about obtaining a petition ask- 
ing the commissioners to grant him a license 
for that purpose. As soon as this was known 
a public meeting was called and held at the 
school-house, on February 2d, and rousing tem- 
perance speeches were made, and a determina- 
tion' expressed that no saloon should be opened 
in that place. A remonstrance was circulated, 
and a large majority of tihe people signed the 
same. During the winter of 1873-74 the tem- 
perance sentiment in Chetopa was sustained by 
the maintenance of the weekly temperance 
literary society, in which a temperance paper 
was read, temperance debates were had, and 
all phases of the question were discussed. 
Nearly all of the temperance workers in the 
place took part in this society. 


On July 8, 1877. quite a number of the 
men of Oswego w-ho were in the habit of in- 
dulging somewhat freely in intoxicating liquors 
organized themselves into a reform club, with 
William Wells as president and L. C. Howard 
as secretary. The purpose of the club was to 
assist its members either in abstaining alto- 
gether from the use of liquor, or to abstain 
therefrom excepting under certain conditions. 


As early as 1 870 Max Muehlschuster start- 
ed a brewery on the Neosho river at Chetopa, 
and soon opened in connection therewith a beer 
garden on the east side of the river. These 
were conducted by him until his death, in Tnlv, 

In 1870 a building for a brewery was erect- 

ed in the north edge of Oswego by John Seiber 
and Edward Eckle, but on account of financial 
embarrassment on the part of the proprietors 
it was never put in operation. 

Early in 1873 John Apperger commenced 
the construction of a brewery just on the brow 
of the hill in the east part of Oswego, south 
of the section-line road running to Columbus, 
which was dedicated by a free-beer frolic on 
Sunday, April 21, 1873. Apperger ran the 
brewery for some four years, but finally, in 
November, 1877, it was closed by the collector 
of internal revenue for illicit transactions, and 
soon thereafter Apperger moved away. 


Murphy meetings in the county commenced 
in Oswego, where, about the ist of October, 
1877, a series of meetings was begun in the 
Methodist church, under the general direction 
of the pastor, which were kept up nightly for 
quite a length of time, and at which nearly all 
of the citizens who at any time spoke in public, 
as well as persons from abroad, made speeches. 
Miss Amanda Way was present on one or two 
occasions. The meetings resulted in securing 
the signatures of over 500 of the citizens to 
the Murphy pledge. At its close steps were 
taken for opening a library and reading-room. 

Soon after the opening of the meetings in 
Oswego a series of meetings was held at Che- 
topa, conducted by Mrs. S. A. Williams, which 
resulted in securing something like 600 signa- 
tures to the Murphy pledge. 

About the same time similar meetings were 
conducted at Parsons by Miss Amanda Way, 
at which about 800 parties took the Murphy 
pledge. Steps were taken at the close of these 
meetings looking to the opening of a free read- 



During- that winter Murphy meetings were 
lield in a large number of the school-houses 
throughout the county, especially in the south- 
ern part. T. J. Calvin took a leading part 
in getting them started, and provided for their 
being frequently conducted. From these tem- 
perance meetings organizations were secured 
in the Baylor school-house, with W. G. Baylor 
as president, and in the Lockard school-house, 
with A. B. Hammer as president. At Mon- 
tana during the same period. Murphy meetings 
were scarcely less successful than at either of 
the other points in the county. The whole 
neighborhood was thoroughly aroused, and a 
very large proportion of the people took the 


On May 28, 1877, the city council of Par- 
sons by unanimous vote passed an ordinance 
requiring the presentation of a petition of a 
majority of the residents of a ward in order 
to obtain a license. The mayor, however, ve- 
toed this ordinance, and the council declined to 
pass it over his veto. The strong argument 
against the passage of the ordinance seemed 
to be that thereby some of the nine saloons then 
running in the city would not be able to procure 
the necessary petition, and the city would 
thereby be deprived of the $200 fee charged 
therefor. A public meeting was had, at which 
a vote of thanks was tendered the three coun- 
cilmen who voted for the passage of the or- 
dinance notwithstanding the mayor's veto. 

Following up the Murphy movement in Os- 
wego, petitions were presented to the council 
requesting the repeal of the ordinance dispens- 
ing with the necessity of petition, in compliance 
with which the council did, on November 2, 
1877, repeal the ordinance on that subject, and 
thereby made it practically certain that licensed 

saloons must cease with the last of the year, 
for with the sentiment as it then existed, there 
was no probabilitv of anyone obtaining a suffi- 
cient petition to entitle the council to grant 
license, were they so disposed. On the ist of 
January, 1878, Oswego for the first time since 
the granting of the first license ten years be- 
fore, was without a licensed saloon ; nor did 
she have one running during the next three 
months. In February, 1878, C. B. Woodford 
presentetl a petition sufficiently signed to 
authorize the council to issue a license, pro- 
vided they had chosen to issue it, for the pur- 
pose of selling "spirituous, vinous, and malt 
liquors in this city for medical, culinary, 
sacramental and mechanical purposes." Signa- 
tures to this petition were obtained on the 
theory that it was not for the purpose of se- 
curing license to open a saloon, but only for 
the sale of liquor for the purposes therein 
named. However, the council refused to grant 
the petition, and passed a preamble and a reso- 
lution that no license would be issued until 
after the people 'had had an opportunity to 
express themselves at the polls whether they de- 
sired license to bq restored. At the city elec- 
tion the only question was whether or not a 
mayor and council should be elected in favor 
of granting license, and the people decided in 
favor of license by a majority of more than 
100. Of course with such a verdict in favor 
of a change of policy from that which had been 
pursued for the three months past, the council 
was not long in granting licenses to those who 
had been anxiously waiting for an opportunity 
to open saloons, and from this time on until 
the State prohibitory law went into efifect Os- 
wego was able to furnish those who wished 
to buy, all the liquor they needed, not only for 
"culinary and medicinal," but also for intoxi- 
cating purposes. 



On January i, 1878, in compliance with 
request of a petition very largely signed by 
the citizens of Chetopa, the mayor and council 
of that city unanimously passed an ordinance 
repealing the ordinance then in force dispens- 
ing with petition, thereby making it incumbent 
on the applicant for license to get a majority 
of the ward, male and female, to petition there- 
for before he could obtain license to sell liquor. 
It was supposed that this would be sufficient 
to do away with saloons in that town. How- 
ever, just one week thereafter a petition of the 
residents of the First Ward was presented to 
the council, containing the re(|uisite number 
of signatures, and a saloon was duly licensed. 
From that time the temperance war was car- 
ried on in earnest. Public meetings were fre- 
quently held, and every step possible taken to 
consolidate the sentiment in favor of no-license. 
This was the direct issue at the city election 
in April, 1878, and by a small majority the 
temperance people succeeded in electing offi- 
cers opposed to the issuance of any license. 
At the expiration of the licenses then in ex- 
istence, on June 30, legalized saloons ceased 
in Chetopa, and were not again introduced. 
In the spring of 1879 little interest was taken 
in the election, and the result was that one 
license councilman was elected, which made 
the council stand a tie. Soon thereafter, pe- 
titions were circulated to secure signatures ask- 
ing that hcense again be granted. A vacancy 
soon occurred in the city council; a special 
election resulted in the election of a temperance 
man, which again gave a clear majority of the 
council opposed to license, and thereby, as was 
supposed, determined the matter of saloons 
for another year. But later in the season fur- 
ther efforts were made by the liquor men to ob- 
tain license, and by direction of the council 
the mayor called a special election, to be held 

on September 23, 1879, of all persons of law- 
ful age, both male and female, to determine 
by ballot whether or not the council should 
grant dramshop license. The vote was taken, 
resulting in 66 men and 113 women voting 
against the license, and not one vote in favor 
thereof. Prior to the election in April, 1880, 
a vigorous effort was made to arouse the tem- 
perance sentiment both in the town and sur- 
rounding country. Petitions were sent out to 
secure the signatures of farmers who preferred 
to trade in a temperance town, and of course a 
vast majority of them signed it. The election, 
however, resulted in the choice of one coun- 
cilman opposed to license and one in favor, 
thereby making the council a tie upon that ques- 


Oswego. — The first lodge of this order es- 
tablished in the county was organized at Os- 
wego on November 14, 1869. Several tem- 
perance workers, feeling the necessity for some- 
thing being dane to save young men from 
drunkenness, applied to the officers of the 
grand lodge for a charter. J. J. Browne was 
appointed deputy to institute the lodge: Nelson 
Case was elected W. C. T., and .V. B. Close, 
W. S. After some years this lodge became 
somewhat disorganized. On May 10. 1876, 
a district Good Templars' meeting was held 
at the Congregational church in Oswego, at 
which steps were taken to reorganize a lodge 
at this place. A number of persons signified 
their willingness to go into such an organiza- 
tion, and a lodge was soon thereafter instituted, 
which, with more or less regularity, main- 
tained its existence until June, 1882, when, 
prohibition having been adopted, its members; 



deemed it unwise longer to continue its opera- 
tion, and it was suspended. The money in the 
treasury, amounting to $30. was donated to 
the Hbrary association. 

Chetopa. — The second lodge formed in the 
■county was organized at Chetopa, where, by 
the aid of the members from the Oswego lodge, 
one was instituted on January 24, 1870. with 
G. L. Courtney as W. C. T.. and S. T. Beck, 
AV. S. With some Interruptions a lodge was 
maintained at Chetopa as late as 1877. Lodges 
were had at one time at Montana, the Lock- 
ard school-house, the Breese sc'hool-house, and 
probably at other points in the county. None 
of these were of very long duration. 

Mound Valley. — On October 10, 1877, 
under the leadership of IN'Irs. Williams, a grand 
lodge deputy, a lodge was instituted at Mound 
Valley, and was maintainedi for some eight 
years, when it became disorganized. Robert 
R. Coleman was its first W. C. T., and he and 
his family were active workers during the his- 
tory of the lodge. November 2, 1885, a re- 
organization was had, and the lodge from this 
time was maintained regularly till May g, 1887, 
when it was again discontinued. Very much 
■of the temperance sentiment of Mound Valley 
may be ascribed to the principles ii'slilled into 
the minds of the young, and to the correct tem- 
perance education p-iven in this lodge. 

Parsons. — On November 12, 1874, 
through the instrumentality of Rev. J. P. 
Hight, a lodge was organized with M. G. 
Brown as \\'. C. T. ; Mrs. M. M. Hill, W. V. 
T. ; Jas. Grimes. W. S. ; M. Johnson, W. T. 
With slight interruptions the lodge maintained 
its organization until the adoption of the pro- 
hibitory amendment, after which time it was 
allowed to die. Mr. Grimes, who was the first 
secretary of this lodge, afterward became quite 
prominent in the order, being at one time sec- 

retary and afterward G. W. C. T. of the grand 
lodge of the State, and several times repre- 
sented the State in the R. W. G. lodge. 

In 1877 local organizations of the Chris- 
tion Temperance Union were formed at two 
or three places in the county. On October 
2Sth one was formed at Chetopa, with T. J. 
Calvin, president, and J. M. Cavaness, secre- 
tary. Sometime that fall or winter one was 
formed at Oswego, and one also existed at 
Montana. On March 20, 1878, a county 
union was formed, with H. G. Webb, presi- 
dent: Mary A. Higby, secretary; Robert L. 
Curl, treasurer; and J. S. Waters, organizer. 

Local Organizations. — The illegal sale 
of liquor in Altamont, resulting in the repeated 
and continued intoxication of several men, be- 
came so unbearable that in July, 1884, there 
was organized the Ladies' Temperance Alli- 
ance, with Mrs. Lizzie Hughes as president. 
This organization did much good in creating 
a public sentiment in favor of putting a stop 
to the illegal sale of liquor, and inducing those 
who were drinking to refrain therefrom. 

In 1883 the ladies of Mound Valley main- 
tained a local union whic'h rendered efficient 
aid to the cause in the way of encouraging and 
aiding those who were engaged in securing the 
enforcement of the law. 

The Oswego Temperance Union was 
formed in January, 1880, and under its man- 
agement the entire city was canvassed for 
signers to a pledge against the use of liquor 
and also against aiding in securing a license 
for a saloon. 

On November 16, 1883, a union was or- 
ganized in Chetopa by Mrs. Drusilla Wilson. 


Mrs. Julia R. Knight was elected president ; 
Miss Agnes Baty, recording secretary: Mrs. 
Nancy Anderson, corresponding secretary ; and 
Mrs. Isaliel Cavaness, treasurer. About July 
28, 1880, a union was formed at Parsons, 
wih Mrs. A. Nealy, secretary. On March 5, 
1885, Mrs. M. E. Griffith, State organizer, 
held a week's meeting at Mound Valley, and 
at its close organized a union. After contin- 
uing its operation for a few months this or- 
ganization became disbanded, but on August 
10. 1886, it was reorganized, with 'Mrs. E. A. 
West, president, and Mrs. H. Beggs, secre- 
tary. This union still maintains a vigorous or- 

On March 2, 1885, a union was formed 
at Oswego, with Mrs. E. Elliott, president and 
Mrs. Lydia A. Baldwin, secretary. Among 
the other ladies who were associated with them 
in this work were Mrs. Augusta Herbaugh, 
Mrs. Mary E. Case, Mrs. Sallie J. Stonecipher 
and Mrs. M. L. Newlon. 


In March, 1886, delegates from the sev- 
eral unions in the county met and organized a 
county union, electing Mrs. Z. L. Janes, of Par- 
sons, president, and Mrs. E. A. West, of Mound 
Valley, secretary. Mrs. West was re-elected 
secretary in 1887 and 1888. In 1887 Mrs. E. 
W. Ross was elected president, and Miss M. 
E. Scott, in 1888. Mrs. Hattie A. Coleman 
was first elected secretary in 1889. 


Early in 1880 steps were taken by the tem- 
perance people of the county to thoroughly pre- 
sent the claims of the pending constitutional 
amendment, to prohibit the sale and manu- 
facture of intoxicating liquors, to the intelli- 

gent and conscientious consideration of the 
electors of the county. In August, 1880, Mrs. 
Lang lectured at Chetopa, at the close of which 
a prohibition society was formed, which soon 
hereafter adopted a constitution, and elected 
C. H. McCreery, president, and F. D. Allen, 
secretary. In Elm Grove township a healthy 
prohibition club was organized early in Sep- 
tember, with the avowed intention of thor- 
oughly canvassing the township. In the same 
month a series of meetings lasting over a week 
was held at Oswego, at which E. B. Reynolds, 
of Indiana, and Col. C. N. Golding were the 
principal speakers. During that fall nearly all 
of the prominent workers in the county were 
engaged more or less in canvassing for the 
amendment. The cause was aided very ma- 
terially by prominent workers from abroad, 
among whom in addition to those above named, 
may be mentioned Gov. St. John, Judge Lay- 
ton, Frank J. Sibley, and George W. Bain. 
The result of the efifort was, that at the elec- 
tion in November 2,082 votes were polled for 
the amendment and 2,123 against it. While 
the friends of temperance had htjped to have 
a majority in favor of prohiliition, they felt 
quite well satisfied that the result was so small 
a majority against it. The constitutional 
amendment having been adopted in the State,, 
and the law for its enforcement having gone 
into effect on May i, 1881, it was not long un- 
til most of the saloons were closed. A few held 
out with the idea that the law would not be 
' enforced, but the majority in that business pre- 
ferred to transfer their operations to more fa- 
vorable fields. 


On May i, 1882, the temperance people of 
the county celebrated the first anniversary of 



prohibition b)^ a public meeting held at Os- 
wego. Gov. St. Joihn was present, and made 
the principal address. The day was unfavor- 
able, a heavy rain falling almost continually 
from 9 o'clock until after the proceedings had 
closed; yet notwithstanding this, an immense 
crowd assembled, coming from nearly all parts 
of the county. Even the enemies of prohibition 
had to concede that the celebration was a suc- 
cess, and its friends were strengthened in their 
determination to see the saloon permanently 
driven out. 


It was not long after this, however, until 
the friends of prohibition in the county who 
were gifted with any measure of discernment 
were satisfied that its enforcement meant a long 
and hard struggle. Those who had been ac- 
customed to reap the enormous profits which 
are incident to the sale of liquor, and whose 
disposition was to furnish all means possible 
for man's downfall, were not disposed to sur- 
render the privilege they had for such a length 
of time enjoyed, so long as they could find any 
means by which they could successfully defy 
the law. The number of those engaged in the 
traffic being so much larger at Parsons than 
at any other point in the county, they, having 
more capital invested in the undertakin"- made 
that the headquarters for the liquor-men of the 

E. R. Marvin, the proprietor of the Bel- 
mont House, was the leader of this law-defy- 
ing class. As good attorneys as could be found 
in the county were employed in the defense 
of Marvin, and those arrested with him, for 
the violation of the law. A protracted legal 
contest ensued, in whidh for a time it seemed 

as though the defyers of the law were to be 
triumphant because of the inability to secure 
a jury who would render a verdict of convic- 
tion even when the most positive and convinc- 
ing testimony was presented to them. Oc- 
casionally, however, a jury of honest men could 
be secured, and witnesses who knew something 
of the obligations of an oath could be put upon 
the stand, in which case verdicts of guilt were 
found. To aid the officers in the enforcement 
of this law, various local organizations were 
formed from time to time as necessity seemed 
to require, and the wisdom of the temperance 
people judged advisable. The first of these 
whidh was at all prominent and effective was 
the Labette County Law Enforcement Society, 
which was organized in the court-house in Os- 
wego January 27, 1883 ; Rev. John Elliott was 
elected president; W. L. Simons, vice-presi- 
dent ; A. A. Osgood, secretary ; and J. M. Bow- 
man, treasurer. This meeting was largely at- 
tended by delegates from all parts of the coun- 
ty. Prior to this, however, local organizations 
had been formed in Oswego, Chetopa and 
Parsons. In July, 1882, a prohibition asso- 
ciation was formed at Oswego. The Law En- 
forcement Society continued in force for some 
two years, during which it raised quite large 
sums of money with which to employ counsel 
to assist the county attorney and to meet the 
expenses necessary to a protracted litigation. 
It was thought best to raise this money by pri- 
vate subscription, so that the public expenses 
attendant on the enforcement of the law would 
not make it obnoxious to those tax-payers who 
might not have any particular interest in seeing 
it made a success. 

On May 9, 1885, Hon. Albert Griffin lec- 
tured in Oswego, and at the close of the lec- 
ture a committee consisting of Nelson Case, 
of Oswego, T. J. Calvin, of Chetopa, and Rev. 



H. A. Tucker, of Parsons, was appointed to 
effect a county org-anization. Thereafter, on 
October 20, 1885, the Labette County Temper- 
ance Union was organized, at the office of Nel- 
son Case, in Oswego, a pubhc meeting having 
been called at said office for that purpose. 
Rev. H. A. Tucker was elected president ; sev- 
eral parties in different parts of the county, 
vice-presidents; Nelson Case, secretary; and C. 
U. Dorman, treasurer. This organization 
proved more effective than any that had hither- 
to been formed for the purpose of enforcing 
the prohibitory law. Mr. Tucker devoted a 
large amount of time canvassing the county, 
forming local associations, creating public sen- 
timent in favor of the law, and uniting the 
earnest temperance workers into a solid or- 
ganization for active duty. The result was 
that every saloon in the county was closed ; 
scarcely a "boot-legger" or "jointist" was fool- 
hardy enough to risk his liberty for the amount 
of profits to be realized from the sales he could 
hope to make. Not a very large amount of 
money was raised or expended by this organiza- 
tion, but a very large amount of earnest work 
was done by a few who were determined to 
see that the law was enforced, and it was prac- 
tically demonstrated that prohibition could be 
made to prohibit when the officers, backed by 
a healthy public sentiment, were determined 
that it should be. 

There has never been a time when the pro- 
hibitory liquor law could not be enforced in this 
county. Much of the time it has been fairly 
well enforced. But some of the time there 
has been a good deal of illegal selling, both by 
those running joints with no pretense of law 
to justify them, and by so called druggists who 
had obtained permits. Other movements, sim- 
ilar to the one started in 1885, followed in sub- 
sequent years. Law enforcement organiza- 

tions have been formed that have done much 
toward strengthening, and in some cases com- 
pelling, the officers to enforce the law. Ex- 
perience has practically demonstrated that 
when the public officers WQre as much in sym- 
pathy with the enforcement of this law, as 
they were with that of other criminal laws, 
they had really no more difficulty in enforc- 
ing this law than they had in enforcing any 
other ; but, on the other hand, when they were 
bent on giving the liquor seller protection, or 
were indifferent as to the result, it has been 
hard work for private citizens to secure a clos- 
ing up of joints, and a punishment of those 
engaged in the illegal traffic. 


It was thought by some that the druggists 
who had been licensed to sell liquor under the 
law during 1882 had sold a larger quantity 
than was really needed for "medicinal, scien- 
tific and mechanical purposes." With the 
opening of 1883 the probate judge, while yet 
there was no law requiring reports to be made 
by those licensed to sell liquor, prepared blanks 
which he distributed to all of the druggists 
to whom license had been granted, requesting 
them to make monthly reports, verified by their 
affidavit to be true and correct, showing under 
the following 'heads what they had done in the 
way of making sales, viz. : "No. of sale," 
"Date," "Name of physician making prescrip- 
tion," "Person for w'bom liquor was pre- 
scribed," "Person to whom liquor was deliv- 
ered," "Kind of liquor sold." "Amount of 
liquor sold." Most of the druggists complied 
with this request without objection, and made 
their reports. Some of the reports showed a 
very large amount of liquor sold, and whether 
or not it was sold illegally seemed to depend 



principally upon whether or not the druggist 
had a right to fill ail prescriptions made by 
practicing physicians, or whether he was bound 
to know that a prescription for liquor every day 
or oftener was in fact a subterfuge in order to 
enable the party to procure li(|Uor to use as a 
beverage and not as a medicine. It became evi- 
dent that the great bulk of prescriptions were 
made by a few physicians, and that they were 
made regularly to parties who thus obtained 
liquor almost as frequently as was desired. 

Some druggists refused to make reports 
as requested ; to all such the probate judge 
refused to renew their license when those 
that had alreadv been given had expired. 
This caused a little friction, but in the end the 
plan adopted very largely secured the end 
sought, viz., to license only the druggists 
who were found not to abuse the privilege of 
the permit and under cover of the druggists' 
license carry on a real saloon. Two years after 
the adoption of this policy by the probate judge, 
the Legislature enacted a law substantially re- 
quiring what he had been doing without any 
law on t'he subject. It was found that very 
few responsible druggists cared to have the files 
of a public office contain the evidence of their 
carrying on a saloon business. In many ways 
the practice of requiring reports to be made, 
and thus giving publicity to all sales of liquor, 
was found to be conducive to the cause of 
temperance and to tend to lessen the amount of 
liquor sold and consumed. Still, as time went 
on, the druggists very generally became indif- 
ferent to the kind of a showing their reports 
made, and many of them, for considerable per- 
iods of time, did what would seem to be an ex- 
tensive saloon Inisiness. In passing upon 
their applications for permits, the proljate 
judge did not alwais look to the evidence 
their reports furnished as to whether or 

not the applicant was doing a legitimate 
druggist's business or was using his permit 
as a cover for running a saloon. The weak- 
ness of a system is best tested by its results in 
actual practice. Evidently some better remedy 
must be found than has yet been put in practice 
for reaching those who deliberately and per- 
sistently violate the soirit, if not the letter, of 
their permits. 


In April, 1890. the Supreme Court of the 
United States, in a cause brought there by writ 
of error from the Supreme Court of Iowa, de- 
cided that a lic|uor-seller in one State might 
send his lic|uors into another, there to be sold 
in the original packages as they were shipped, 
notwithstanding the laws of the latter State ab- 
solutely prohibited the sale of liquor within its 
boundaries. This decision announced a rule 
entirely opposed to the opinion which was gen- 
erally entertained by the legal profession re- 
specting the clause of the Federal Constitution 
giving to Congress the power to regulate in- 
terstate commerce; and by virtue of it a cen- 
tury's practice of ]3olice regulation was upset, 
and a new system instituted as contrary there- 
to as could have been effected by a legislative 
enactment. Seldom has anything transpired 
which has been hailed by the saloon-men with a 
greater degree of delight than was manifested 
by them on the announcement of this decision. 
They were not long in makinp^ their arrange- 
ments to open saloons under the designation of 
"original-package houses" in nearly everj^ town 
where public sentiment would at all tolerate 
them. In many places the temperance people 
made such a bold resistance to their introduc- 
tion that the proprietors deemed it unwise to 
force them upon the people. 

This state of things was not left to be con- 




tinned for a great lengt'h of- time under tlie 
sanction of law. On August 8, 1890, the Con- 
gressional enactment known as the Wilson bill 
was approved, whereby the old rule of allowing" 
the States under their power of police regula- 
tion to prescribe such rules as they desired, gov- 
erning or prohibiting the sale of intoxicating 
liquors within their respective jurisdictions, 
was revived. Very soon thereafter the orig- 
inal-package saloon, like its predecessor of some 
other name, took its departure from our county. 
A party brought a lot of liquors to Oswe- 
go, and attempted to rent a room in which to 
open out an original-package saloon. He found 
trouble in securing a room. Finally some one, 
to see what effect it would have, got a sign 
painted and put it up over the door of a vacant 
room belonging to Jo'hn Clover. The town was 
soon astir with excitement. Mrs. Clover came 
up town, and, learning of the sign being on 
their building, at once proceeded to have it torn 

down. The determined opposition to the open- 
ing of such a saloon deterred any farther at- 
tempt in that direction. 

In both Parsons and Chetopa these orig- 
inal-package houses were opened, several in 
both places running until after the passage of 
the Wilson bill. As is often done by saloon- 
men, those opening these houses were not con- 
tent to sell under the law as it had been inter- 
preted by the court granting them the authority 
so to do, but, disregarding the legal restrictions 
which the law had thrown around the sale, they 
carried on an open saloon. Prosecutions were 
soon commenced against them, and probably 
had the Wilson bill not been passed most o£ 
these houses could have been closed and their 
proprietors confined in tlie county jail; but the 
passage of the law and the criminal prosecu- 
tions instituted by our officials effectively re- 
moved from our boundaries the last original- 
package house. 


Altamont. — Name changed from Elston 
Feb. I, 1875. Postmasters appointed as fol- 
lows: Henry E. Hammon, Feb. i, 1875; J^^e 
Huston, Nov. 19, 1878; William M. Paramore, 
Sept. 18, 1884; Andrew J. Garst, Oct. 21, 
1885; Martha E. Davis, July 22, 1889; Will- 
iam S. Houghton, Nov. 7, 1893; Richard A. 
Davis, Oct. 13, 1897. 

Angola. — Name changed from Arnold Jan. 
31, 18S7. Postmasters appointed: Isaac N. 
Watson, Jan. 31, 1887; Alfred Elliott, March 
29. 1889; J. W. jNIcCartney, March 10, 1894; 
Joseph Carr, Feb. 3, 1898. 

^rnoW.— Established Aug. i, 1881. Post- 
masters appointed: Allen S. Meek, Aug. i, 
1881 ; James M. Sage. Jan. 4, 1SS4. Name 
-changed to Angola Jan. 31, 1887. 

5a;-//c/f.— Established Sept. 15, 1886. Post- 
masters appointed: Jerome Callahan, Sept. 15, 
1886; Ira W. Clark, April 11. 1889: Haly J. 
Reece, Oct. 10, 1889; Jerome Callahan, Oct. 
31, 1893; J. O- Wiley. Oct. 13, 1897; Paul A. 
Reece Nov. 5, 1897. 

Big /////.— Established June 8, 1868. Post- 
masters appointed : Joseph McCormick, June 8, 
1868: David Stanfield, March 24, 1871. Dis- 
continued Sept. 18, 1871. 

Barton. — Establi.s'hed Jan. 11. 187-. Post- 
masters appointed: John H. Tibbets. Jan. 11. 
1877; William Paramore, March 28, 1884: 

George E. Nichols, July 28, 1884. Discontin- 
ued March 19, 1886. 

Cecil. — Established February 15, 1881. 
Postmasters appointed: John Lyons, Feb. 15, 
1881 ; George Burge, May 8, 1882; Cornelius 
W. Fowler, Dec. 9, 1885; Mrs. Elizabeth Lew- 
man, April 4, 1887; George Burge, Mav 15. 

Chctopa. — Established April 15, 1867. 
Postmas>:ers appointed : Willoughby Doudna, 
April 15, 1867; Zachariah Woodward, May 8, 
1868; Ephraim J. Stuart, Jan. 13, 1870;. Jef- 
ferson J. Hibbetts, April 22, 1872; James M. 
Cavaness, Oct. 29, 1875; Josephus P. De Jar- 
nett, May 18, 1885; Joseph Craft, July 18, 
1889; William J. Herman, March 16, 1894: Jo- 
seph Craft, May 5, 1898. 

Clymorc. — Established Nov. 15. 1869. 
Postmasters appointed : John W. Lushljaugh, 
Nov. 15, 1869. Discontinued J^Iay 7, 1872. 

Crcswcll. — Established March 25. 1870. 
Postmaster appointed : Edward Spicer. March 
25, 1870. Discontinued Sept. 11, 1871. 

Crousc. — Establis'lied April 23, 1880. Post- 
masters appointed : Daniel B. Grouse. April 22i, 
1880: M. Jennie Sacks. April 7. 1884: Jennie 
M. Hunter, ]\lav i, 1884. Discnntinued Oct. 
23, 1885. 

L'i'n/i-w.— Established June 8, 1881. Post- 
masters appointed: John S. ^lilligan, June 8, 



1881; John X. Webb, Nov. 21, 1881 ; James 
L. Wilson, Sept. i, 1885; Louis R. Powell, 
Dec. 16, 1887: John Raney. July 24, 1889; 
Samuel C. Rickart. September 2, 1893; Cy- 
renius \\ . Grago-, April 2, 1897. 

Dora. — Established Dec. 24, 1869. Post- 
masters appointed : William H. Godwin, Dec. 
24, 1869; Francis W. Noblett, Nov. 24, 1877; 
John I. Martin, Nov. 26. 1884; Mrs. Ada 
James, Jan. 27,. 1885. Discontinued Nov. 11, 

Daytonvillc. — Established Aug. 12, 1870. 
Postmasters appointed : Eliiha K. Current, 
Aug. 12, 1870. Discontinued July 7, 1871, 

Dccrtozcn. — Established Sept. 5, 1881. 
Postmasters appoirt^d : Aaron Humes, Sept. 5, 
1881 ; Charles M. Keeler. Sept. 4, 1884. Name 
changed to Valeda Sept. 3, 1886. 

£(/;;fl.-^Established April 4, 1878. Post- 
masters appointed : Al^ander Pattiann, April 

4, 1878; France .^. Clark, Jan. 30. ifto; Jo'lm 

5. Odell.Nov. -20^ 1886: Frajj^ W. Martin, 
July 12, 1^89; Wdliam H. Pottorff. Jan. 25, 
1894; Frank \\^ Elliott, Dec. 24, 1897. 

Elm C7/y.— Established Sept. 24, 1886. 
Postmasters appoin^d : Zachariah H. Rober- 
son, Sept. 24, i886;t.ewis F. Smith, Dec. 19, 
1888; James H. Brown, Feb. 28, 1889; Thomas 
Greenup, May 21, 1891 ; Jesse Edmundson, 
Jan. 9, 1892; Phiiip E. Mulkey, Sept. 17, 1895; 
Hiram A. Wilson, July 6, 1897. 

Elston. — Established May 18, 1870. Post- 
matters appointed: John B. Laurence, May 18, 
1870; David L. Adams, July 24, 1870; Martin 
V. B. Watson, Feb. 24. 1871. Discontinued 
June II, 1873. Reestablished Aug. 19, 1873. 
Postmasters appointed: John Elston. Aug. 19 
1873; Susan A. Prather, Jan. 7, 1874: Henry 
A. Hammon, Oct. 21. 1874. Name changed 
to Altamont Feb. i. 1875. 

F/j//fr;7/.— Established July 3, 1878. Post- 

master appointed : William H. Fish, July 3, 
1878. Discontinued July 2, 1879. 

Gorham. — Established June 11, 1875. Post- 
master appointed: Park B. Clark, June 11, 
1875. Discontinued Sept. 5, 1878. 

Gro;;^— Established May 8, 1876. Post- 
master appointed : William J. Harshaw, May 

8, 1876. Discontinued Dec. 13. 1876. 
Hackhcrry. — Established April i. 1875. 

Postmaster appointed : Theodore A. Fellows, 
April I, 1875. Discontinued July 13, 1876. 

/(/n/&;-o.— Established Oct. 18, 1887. Post- 
masters appointed: Thomas T. Iden. Oct. 18, 
1887; Joseph Allen, March 3, 1892; Benjamin 
F. Briggs, Jan. 17, 1898; Theodore F. Dienst, 
Nov. 4, 1899. 

I Ilka. — Established Dec. 10, 1866. Post- 
masters appointed : John P. D. Mouriquand, 
Dec. 10, 1866; Zadhariah Harris, April 11, 
1867: Jesse Fry, March 17, 1868. Discontin- 
ued Aug. 31, 1868. Reestablished February 
15, 1869. Postmaster apoointed: Aaron P. 
Grover, Feb. 15, 1869. Discontinued Dec. 14. 

Kingston. — Established Jan. 9, 1878. Post- 
master appointed: Charles W. Campbell, Jan. 

9, 1878. Discontinued Nov. 20, 1886. 
Labette City. — Established June, 16, 1868. 

Postmasters a|)pointed : Richard G. Tileston, 
June 16, 1868; George H. English, July 20, 
1869. Discontinued April 8, 1870. 

Labette. — Name changed from Neola July 
3, 1870. Postmasters appointed: David C. 
Lowe, July 3, 1870: James W. H. Goulden, 
Oct. 3 1870; Samuel \\'. Collins, March 16. 
1875 : Jonas T. Lampson, June 30. 1875 ; James 
W. H." Golden. Jan. 5, 1876; John S. McClain, 
Nov. 4, 1885: Alonzo C. Lamm, April 16, 
1889: Thomas Harvey, April 20, 1893: Will- 
iam J. Webb, June 4, 1897; Alonzo C. Lamm, 
Aug. 10, 1897. 



Lancvillc. — Established May 29, 1884. 
Postmasters appointed : Isaac \\\ Galyen. May 
29. 1884; Joihn W. Morning, April 16. 1886; 
Benjamin Franklin. Now 13, 1886: Samuel 
Ballentine, Xov. i, 1887; Ira P. Merrill, April 
9, 1888; John W. Howell, Dec. 31. 1895: Ed- 
ward D. Clark, Nov. 22. 1897. 

Lake Creek. — Established Dec. 5, 1870. 
Postmaster appointed : Oscar C. Ketchum, Dec. 
5, 1870. Discontinued ^Marcli 29, 1872. 

MattJici^'son. — Established August i^, 
1878. Postmasters appointed: William T. Car- 
ter, Aug. 15, 1878; William McDown, June 24, 
1879; Gustavus V. Watson, April 3, 1882: 
William McDown, April 21, 1882: Marshall 
E. Thompson, Jan. 22, 1883; William Mc- 
Down, Xov. 17, 1885. 

il/nu-rra.— Established Dec. 8, 1874. Post- 
masters appointed : William H. Bower, Dec. 8, 
1874; Charles M. Keeler, July 2t„ 1877; Mor- 
ris W. Monroe, Nov. 13, 1878; Daniel W. But- 
ler, Nov. 10, 1879; Russell A. Curry, Jan. 24, 
1882; Martha E. Butler. May 11, 1882; Mary 
E. Adams, July 6, 1883 ; Russell A. Curry, July 
20, 1883; Mary E. Adams. Nov. 15, 1883. 

Montana. — Established Oct. 4, 1866. Post- 
masters appointed: Benjamin F. Simons, Oct. 
4, 1866; Samuel S. W'atson, Jan. 21, 1868; 
Charles E. Simons, May 21 1872; Samuel Bal- 
lentine, Jan. 22, 1877 ; Jonathan J. Freeman, 
Sept. 2, 1885; Samuel Ballentine, July 15, 
1889; James P. Bradfield, Jan. 26, i894;'odil- 
lon B. Shultz, ]\Iay 29, 1897. 

.1/()r////(n'.— Established Jan. 12, 1883. 
Postmasters appointed : James T. Mortimer, 
Jan. 12, 1883; William J. Iliff, July 11. 1883; 
James G. Finley, Feb. 18, 1884; James B. Hib- 
hard, Feb. 24. 1886; Geo. Lohman. July 9, 
1886; Emanuel Mortimer, Nov. i, 1886; Will- 
iam H. Makeaney, April 20, 1889; James T. 
Mortimer. June 14, 1895; Walton E. Stapp, 

Jan. 7, 1899; \\'illiam Terhune, Oct. 26, 

Monnd Valley. — Established May 18, 1870. 
Postmasters appointed : Alexander Hon'rath, 
May 18, 1870; Lewis F. Nicklace, Dec. 23, 
1872; Francis M. Anderson, Nov. 7, 1873; Lil- 
burn W. Slocum, Nov. 9, 1874; Milton Dunn, 
June II, 1875; Robert Blackley, Nov. 29, 
1875; Newton M. Miller, March 17, 1880; 
George Lutz, Aug. i, 1884; Peter W. Shick, 
Aug. 26, 1885; James M. Richardson, Aug. 
27, 1886; John Dudley, July 10, 1889; Charles 
E. McEwen, April 21, 1892; Isaac M. Hinds, 
Nov. 21, 1893: William F. Thrall Nov. 19, 

Mcndota. — Established Sept. 25, 1869. 
Postmasters appointed : William K. Hayes, 
Sept. 25, 1869. Name dhanged to Parsons Dec. 
9, 1870. 

AVo/a.— Established Oct. 12, 1868. Post- 
masters appointed : William J. Conner, Oct. 
12, 1868; David C. Lowe, March 28, 1870. 
Name changed to Labette July 5, 1870. 

Oszvego. — Established Oct. 4, 1866. Post- 
masters appointed : Nelson S. Carr, Oct. 4, 
1866: John O. Cowell. May 7, 1868; John D. 
Coulter, March 29, 1869; Abel W. Pickering, 
Dec. 12, 1870; Hiram P. Newlon, April 13, 
1871 ; Littleton S. Crum, April 13, 1876; John 
M. Landis, Dec. 2, 1886, not confirmed, but 
again appointed March 7, 1887; Frank D. Al- 
len, Aug. 2, 1889; J. W. Waskey, March 6, 
1894: William F. McGill. Nov. 16. 1897; 
Maud McGill, July 19. 1900. 

Parsou.<;. — Name changed from Mendota 
Dec. 9, 1870. Postmasters appointed: Will- 
iam K. Hayes, Dec. 9, 1870; Samuel O. Fletch- 
er, March 22, 1878; Frank W. Frye, Aug. 7, 
1885; Harry H. Lusk, April 23, 1889; Frank 
W. Frye, Feb. 27, 1894; Harry H. Lusk, June 
7, 1897. 



RIpoii. — Established January 12, 1870. 
Postmasters appointed : Carlton B. Pratt, Jan. 
12, 1870: Mrs. Almira L. Pratt, April 3, 1S72; 
Thomas H. Bruner, .^i^ril 13, 1874; Thnmas 
Greenup, Oct. 31, 1877. Discontinued Dec. 

15, 1884. Reestablished May 6, 1886. Post- 
masters appointed: Thomas Greenup, May 6, 
1886; John Triplett, Jan. 10, 1887. Discontin- 
ued Jan. 9, 1 89 1. 

^■^oz'fr.— Established Oct. 9, 1883. Post- 
master appointed : Henry M. Debolt, Oct. 9. 
1883. Name changed- to Debolt. July 16, 1884. 
Postmaster appointed: Plenry M. Debolt, July 

16, 1884. Name changed to Stover, Jan. 28, 
1886. Postmasters appointed : Clark M. Mon- 
roe, Jan. 28, 1886; Rufus T. Monroe. April 

17, 1888; Henry M. Debolt, April 16, 1889: 
James M. Logan, Sept. 9, 1893. Discontinued 
Sept. 23. 1895. 

Syh'aii £)o/t'.— Established March 29, 1876. 
Postmaster appointed: Geo. S. Anderson, 
Mardh 29, 1876. Discontinued Jan. 21, 1878. 

5"«ow /////.— -Established Jan. 13, 1879. 
Postmasters appointed: Wm. Geyer, Jan. 13, 
1879; William B. Roberts, July 12, 1880; 
James Cool, April 5, 1884. Discontinued July 
16. 1884. 

Timber /////.—Established Dec. 22, 1869. 

Postmasters apjMiinted: Francis Labadie, Dec. 
22, 1869; Winfield S. Gotzenbaum, June 26, 
1870; C. L. Bnutillier, March 31, 1871 ; Will- 
iam J. Boutillier, Dec. 13, 1876: John T. Weak- 
ley, May 8, 1879. Discontinued Nov. 17, 

Trenton. — Established Jan. 30, 1872. Post- 
masters appointed: John W. Hall, Jan. 30, 
1872; James M. Arthur, Feb. 25, 1874. Dis- 
continued May 10, 1875. 

Valcda. — Name changed from Deerton 
Sept. 3, 1886. Postmasters appointed : Charles 
M. Keeler, Sept. 3, 1886; William Blackford, 
Nov. II, 1886: John G. Willey, March 26, 
1889: Alexander H. McCarty, Jan. 4, 1893; 
Allen E. Townsend, Nov, 16, 1897; Erastus 
A. Milliken, Jan. 5, 1901. 

U'Usonton. — Established Sept. 9, 1887. 
Postmasters appointed : John J. Melick, Sept. 
9, 1887; Survilda A. Modlin, Sept. 18, 1888; 
Shelby W. Bonebraker, Dec. 5, 1888; Morris 
T. Baker, Aug. 10, 1889; Andrew R. Warn- 
ing, Feb. 18, 1890; John M. Gordon, Mardh 
28, 1S91 ; Ada A. Hopps, Sept. 30, 1891; 
James L. Switzer, Aug. 31. 1894. Discontin- 
ued May 7, 189s. Reestablished June 6, 1895; 
postmasters appointed, John Gurdnn, June 6, 
1895; William H. Lee, Dec. 15 1896. 


For some time after the settlement of the 
county commenced, the settlers had to depend 
on verbal and written communications for the 
transmission of local news. The first paper to 
be published in this part of the State was the 
Neosho Valley Eagle, the first issue of which is 
dated Ma}^ 2, 1868 — just a month before the 
first publication appeared in Labette county. 
While the Eagle was published at Jacksonville, 
in Neosho county, it was issued from an office 
only a few feet north of the county line, and 
was regarded by the settlers in this county al- 
most as their own paper. B. K. Land was edi- 
tor and publisher, and until the establishment of 
the Register his paper was considered the offi- 
cial paper of this county, and was very gener- 
ally patronized by our citizens. 



Was the first paper to be published in Labette 
county. The town company arranged with E. 
R. Trask, of Emporia, to bring a press and es- 
tablish a paper at this noint, and guaranteed 
him 300 paid subscribers, office rent for one 
year, and a building lot. The first issue of the 
paper appeared June 5, 1868. Trask contin- 
ued to publish tlie paper until June 4, 1869, 
when he sold out to C. C. Clo\er and F. B. ]\Ic- 
Gill, who thereafter published it until Decem- 
ber 30, 1870, when AIcGill sold his interest to 

Clover, but continued as editor until June i^ 

1871. About August 19, 1871, John Shorten 
took charge of the paper as editor and publish- 
er, although there were associated with him in 
its ownership, and probably in its management, 
some who had been longer residents of the 
county. December 2/, 1871, Shorten retired 
from the control of the Register, and B. W. 
Perkins took charge as editor. On May 21, 

1872, E. R. Trask became joint owner with 
Perkins in the paper, and together they pub- 
lished it until May i, 1873, when R. J. Alex- 
ander and J. C. Smith became the owners and 
publishers, and so continued until the 17th day 
of the month, when its issuance ceased, and no 
paper was issued until October 3, 1873, ^^■hen 
J. R. Wilson became editor, with L. S. Crum 
as publisher. This arrangement continued un- 
til about the last of January, 1874, when ^V. 
P. Bishop succeeded Mr. Wilson as editor, and 
L. S. Crum continued as business manager. 
The last issue under this management was on 
November 27. 1874. E. R. Trask succeeded 
Bishop, and for some time thereafter E. R. 
Trask and H. P. Newlon had control of the 
paper. About the last of February. 1875, they 
arranged for its sale to F. B. I^IcGill, and on 
March 12, 1875, appeared the last issue of the 
Register; and from henceforth it became in- 
corporated into the outfit of the Oswego Inde- 

The First D.mly. — On ^lay 13. 1869, 



Trask issued a little sheet which lie styled the 
"Osivcgo Daily Register," and which was 
marked "Vol. i, No. i." This was filled with 
matter relating to Oswego and Labette county, 
and was intended simply as an advertising me- 
dium. No. 2 of this "daily" never made its 
appearance. About September 10, 1871, Short- 
en started the Oswego Daily Register, which 
was the first daily paper published in this part 
of the State. He thought to make it a success 
by supplying the neighboring towns with a 
daily paper the same day of publication, and as 
soon as the issue was out a messenger started 
with a Inmille of them to Chetopa and other 
points. This daily was short lived, only about 
40 issues appearing, and it finally closed No- 
vember 15. 


W. J. Lea had been one of the publishers of 
the hulcpendeut at Columbus for some time 
prior to its removal to Oswego. F. B. ]\Ic- 
Gill, having no connection with any paper at 
that time, arranged for the purchase of a half- 
interest in the paper, the other half being re- 
tained by W. J. Lea, and they two moved it 
to Oswego, and on June 15, 1872. the Oswego 
Independent first made its appearance. Lea 
was one of the publishers up to November zt,, 
1872, when he sold his interest to F. B. Mc- 
Gill, who thereafter was editor and proprietor 
up to September 5, 1874, when J. W. Mon- 
fort became a joint owner and publisher, and 
continued as such up to June 10, 1875, \vhen 
McGill again assumed exclusive ownership and 
coi>trol, and continued the editor and publisher 
until his death, on August 18, 1879. J. S. 
\\'aters, who had done some editorial work for 
Mr. McGill prior to his death, while he was un- 
able to do the work himself, succeeded Mr. Mc- 
Gill as editor, and continued as sole responsible 

editor to October 8, 1881, at which time the 
name of J. E. Bryan appears with that oi J. S. 
Waters as editors. Air. Bryan had, howe^'er, for 
some time before this done more or less editor- 
ial work. Vaters and Bryan were joint editors 
up to April 29, 1883, when Mr. \Vaters retired, 
and Mr. Bryan became sole editor, and contin- 
ued to act as such up to November 27, 1885. 
At that time Nelson Case became editor. Mr. 
Bryan's name continued to appear as one of the 
editors up to September 3, 1886, but he did 
very little work after Mr. Case took charge. 
ISh. Case continued to edit the paper to March 
I, 1889. Since that time ^^Irs. McGill and her 
sons, A\'. F. McGill and Lee McGill, were the 
editors. Of course the local work has been 
done by many different parties. \V. F. Thrall 
was local editor for some time, and the McGill 
children have for many years done a large part 
of the local work. Airs. Mary A. McGill con- 
tinued as publisher and business manager of the 
paper from the time of her 'husband's death 
down to her own death, which occurred June 
12, 1900. Soon thereafter, Lee McGill and 
Aland McGill purchased the interest of the 
other two children in the plant, since which 
time the Independent has been under their man- 
agement, the editorial work being in the hands 
of Lee AIcGill. It will thus be seen that since 
the first issue of tlie Independent on June 15, 
1872, it has been under the control of the Mc- 
Gill family. 

The D.mly Independent. — On Wednes- 
day, October 5. 1881, the first issue of the Os- 
wego Daily Independent appeared, with J. S. 
Waters and J. E. Bryan as editors. Air. Bryan 
had for some time been doing more or less edi- 
torial work on the Independent, but not until 
the commencement of the daily did he appear as 
associate editor. Airs. McGill continued to 
publish the daily until January 25, 1883, when 



its publication ceased. It may fairly be stated 
that the daily was not started nor its publica- 
tion continued with the idea on the part of the 
publishers or the editors that the best interest 
of all concerned required the publication of a 
daily in this place; but the Oswego Republican 
being at that time opposing a part of the Re- 
publican ticket, it was thought by some of the 
political managers that the oldest Republican 
paper in the place, and the one recognized as 
the most relialily Republican, should issue a 
daily to meet the opposition of the Daily Re- 
publican. It was under these circumstances that 
the Daily Independent was started and main- 
tained as long as it was, and its publication dis- 
continued only after its owner had made it evi- 
dent that Oswego was not a large enough place 
to justify the publication of a first-class daily 


In the spring of 1870 M. V. B. Bennett 
came to Oswego from Iowa, bringing with him 
material for a newspaper office, from which he 
soon issued the Oswego Democrat, which he 
continued to publish until November 27. 1870, 
when he moved the establishment to Inde- 
pendence, from which place he continued to 
issue the paper. 


On September 27, 187S, Volney ]\Ioon, of 
Webb City, issued the first number of the Os- 
wego Enterprise, which he published weekly 
until November 20 of the "same year, when, 
claiming fhat he failed to get a sufficient sup- 
port to justify its continuance, he sold the es- 
tablishment to J. F. ]\IcDowell, who moved it 
to Baxter Springs. 


This paper was founded October 16, 1879, 

by George S. King, D. S. Capell, and Frank 
\V. Frye. ]\Ir. King did the main part of the 
editorial work, Mr. Frye the local work, and 
Mr. Capell had charge of the job office. On 
May 30. 1880, Mr. Capell sold his interest to 
his partners and retired from the firm. Messrs. 
King and Frye continued together until Feb- 
ruary II, 1 88 1, when Mr. Frye sold his interest 
in the paper to Mr. King, who was its editor 
and publisher until December. 1882, when G. 
F. King became editor — his father, however, 
remaining publisher. This arrangement con- 
tinued until July i. 1883, wlien the paper was 
purchased by J. M. Landis and A. D. Carpen- 
ter, who continued in charge until March 13, 
1884. when Mr. Carpenter sold his interest to 
Mr. Landis. On September 13. 1887. C. E. 
Hughey and H. A. Harley leased the office, 
and continued in its management until the first 
week of December, when Mr. Landis again as- 
sumed control, and for several years continued 
to be the editor and publisher. However, at 
the close of 1892, the paper passed under the 
control of J. D. H. Reed. Mr. Reed continued 
as the ostensible editor and publisher of the 
paper until ^May 17, 1894, when ]\Ir. Landis 
again became the recognized editor, — he re- 
mained in charge until July 26. 1894. when he 
sold the plant to The Democrat Publishing 
Company. Although not so announced on the 
paper, Harry Mills was its editor and business 
manager, and so continued until March 5, 
1896, w-hen its publication finally ceased, the 
plant at that time having been sold to William 
Cook, and the paper liax-ing lieen merged in 
the Ncz.-s-Blade. 


On August 29. 1889, ,the first number of 
this paper was issued from its Oswego office 
as the successor of the Chetopa Statesman, 



w'liich for four }-ears preceding had been puli- 
lished at Chetopa. Xelson Al)!)ott. with his 
wife a part of tlie time and liis son a part of 
the time associated with him. was the editor 
and also the pubHsher of this paper from its 
first issue until its publication ceased at his 
death, which took place January 20, 1892. The 
last issue of the paper under Mr. Abbott's man- 
agement appeared January 8. 1892, although 
one or two small sheets subsequently appeared 
during his sickness explaining the cause of 
the paper failing to issue. In March, 1892, 
R. B. Claiborne purchased the office from Mrs. 
Abbott and renewed the publication of the 
Statesman, the first number under his man- 
agement being on March 10, 1892. When the 
Times suspended and passed under the control 
of the Democrat , Mr. Claiborne purchased the 
right to use its name, and tin July 14, 1892, 
the name of the paper was changed to the 


Was published but a few weeks; it first ap- 
peared November 18, 1892. ^\^ W. Whetstone 
was its publisher and Harr}- ]\Iills, its editor. 


About August I, 1 88 1, a sandy-complex- 
ioned, medium-sized man, named H. H. 
Brooks, whose speech at once gave token of 
'his English origin, made his appearance upon 
the streets of Oswego, hailing at that time 
from some point in Texas. It was not long- 
after until the material for a printing estab- 
lishment appeared at the depot, and on Mon- 
day, August 8, 1 88 1, No. i of the Oswego 
Daily Republican was scattered among the 
reading public. On Thursday of that week 
appeared the Weekly Republican, and from 
that time on both the daily and weekly Re- 

publican made t'heir regular appearance. Upon 
^larch 7, 1883, the daily ceased, but the week- 
ly continued until the close of 1886, being at 
that time changed into the Bee. I. W. Pat- 
rick, who was a joint owner with Brooks from 
the start, did not appear as one of the editors 
or publishers until September 30, 1881. Brooks 
and Patrick continued as joint owners until 
August 3, 1882. when Brooks sold his interest 
to Patrick and retired. Patrick continued to 
run the ])aper until April it,, 1885, when it 
was sold to C. A. Wilkin and Jess Brockway. 
In the fall of 1884 J. M. Huttim became as- 
sociate editor, and in Patrick's absence as In- 
dian agent did all the work on the paper. 
Wilkin and Brockway as editors, and F. G. 
Moore as publisher, ran the paper until Au- 
gust 27, 1885, when they sold to Abe Stein- 
barger, who, from September ist to the close 
of 1886, had complete control as editor and 
publisher, when its publication ceased under 
the above title. 


On January i, 1887, the first number of the 
Bee appeared as the successor (jf the Republi- 
can. It was run by Abe Steinbarger as a week- 
ly, on very much the same plan as he had there- 
tofore run the Republican, up to October 6, 

1888, when 'he sold to R. W. Wright and J. 
H. Macon, who conducted it until January 26, 

1889, when it passed into the hands of a pub- 
lishing company with Jess Brockway as editor, 
under which management it djutinued until 
May, 1889, when its publication ceased. 

The D.mly Bee made its appearance March 
7, 1887, and continued until September, 1888. 

the oswego cour.\xt 
Was published from the old oftrce where tlie 
Bee had been gotten out. and was considered a 



successor of that paper. Its first issue was 
dated May 25, 1889, and it continued to ap- 
pear until February 27, 1891, wlien its sub- 
scription list and good-will were sold to the 
Independent. It was started by S. C. Stein- 
barger and A. L. Utterback ; December 14, 
1889, Mr. Utterback retired, and the paper 
was continued to its close by Mr. Steinbarger. 


Was started by S. C. Steinbarger, June 13, 
1891, and was conducted under the same man- 
agement until July 9, 1892, when its subscrip- 
tion list and good-will were sold to the La- 
bette County Democrat, and the Times was 
discontinued. Mr. Landis sold Mr. Claiborne 
the right to use the name of the suspended 
paper in connection with that of the Statesman. 


In 1877 Parnell & Houck started this paper 
as an advertising medium. Its publication con- 
tinued for several months. 


In July, 1885, C. R. Waters, a real-estate 
agent at Oswego, issued a sheet with this title, 
through which to let the people know what he 
was doing in the real-estate business. 


Was a sheet edited and published in Oswego 
by O. V. Hays and S. A. Rendall during the 
session of the institute in August, 1881. It 
was devoted mainly to matters connected with 
the institute. 


Was a monthly publication having but a short 
life. Mrs. Lucy Best was its editor and J. M. 

Landis, its publis'her. The first number ap- 
peared in October, 1892. 


Was the successor of the Labette County 
Statesman, the name having been changed 
when the Oswego Times suspended publica- 
tion and its name was purchased by Mr. Clai- 
borne July 14, 1892. R. B. Claiborne contin- 
ued to edit and publish the paper until his death 
on October i, 1899, when his son, H. H. Clai- 
borne, assumed control and conducted the pa- 
per until January 4. 1900, at which time the 
plant was sold to ^^'i]liam Cook & Son; the 
publication of the Times-Statesman then 
ceased, being merged into the Nezvs-BIade. 


Was a daily, published by S. C. Steinbarger. 
It was started in the spring of 1894 and ran 
in that manner until August of that vear, 
when it was united with the Union Blade to 
form the News-Blade. 


Was started by Captain G. A. Xicholetts. ap- 
parently with the intention of making it of 
especial interest to old soldiers and as the or- 
gan of the G. A. R. The first issue appeared 
January 27, 1894, and the last on August 4, 
1894, when it was sold by Captain Nicholetts 
to S. C. Steinbarger, and united with the Ncivs. 


Made its appearance August 11, 1894, being 
the consolidated Oswego Nezi's and Union 
Blade. The last issue of the Union Blade was 
numbered 28, and the first issue of the N^exvs- 
Bladc was numbered 29. S. C. Steinbarger 
was the editor and publisher of this paper from 



its first issue in August, 1894, to the close of 
1895. O" the 1st of January, 1896, Wihiam 
Cook became half-owner of the paper. Its pub- 
lication was continued by Steinbarger & Cook 
until June 20, 1896, when Mr. Cook purdhased 
]\Ir. Steinbarger's interest and became the full 
owner. In 1899 he associated his son, John, 
with him in its publication. February 10, 
1897, the name of the paper was changed to 
that of the Oswego Weekly Blade, and as such 
it is still conducted by William Cook & Son. 


Was a monthly publication started in Febru- 
ary, 1899, by S. C. Steinbarger. Its publica- 
tion was continued but five or six mont'hs. 


First twinkled on Alay 4, 1899. William ]\Ic- 
Namer was its editor and ran it until about 
the middle of October of that year. He re- 
vived its publication for a short time in De- 
cember, but with the close of 1899 it ceased to 
shed any light. 


W'hen the Star suspended in October. 1899, 
Charles Howard started the Messenger, which 
he conducted for about a month, or perhaps a 
little more. 


The first issue of this paper appeared Oc- 
tober 21, 1899, s^fl 't h'ls been issued regu- 
larly since that date. Alf. D. Carpenter has 
been its editor and publisher from the first. 


Is an irregular publication, conducted by Dr. 
W. S. Newlon as an advertising medium, and 

also as a vehicle through which lie conveys to 
the public much of his general information. 



Col. John W. Horner and A. S. Cory 
brought to Chetopa from Baldwin City, Doug- 
las county, a printing-press and outfit, in De- 
cember, 1868, and the first issue of the second 
paper in the county appeared under the above 
designation, January 6, 1869. J. W. Horner 
was editor, and Horner & Cory were publishers. 
From the first, J. M. Cavaness was foreman of 
the oiifice. On the last day of May following 
Mr. Cory retired from the paper, leaving 
Colonel Horner as sole owner and editor, 
which he continued to be until the first nf Jan- 
uary, 1870, when he associated with him S. 
A. Fitc'h in the management and editurship of 
the paper. At this time the name of the pa- 
per was changed to that of 


The last of July, 1870, Mr. Fitchi re- 
tired, leaving Mr. Horner again as sole owner. 
On July I, 1872, James M. Cavaness became 
the owner of a half-interest in the paper, and 
its business manager. ]\Ir. Horner sold his 
half-interest on February 2y. 1873, to L. J. 
Van Landingham. and the paper was then con- 
duced bv Ca\'aness & Van Landingham. Au- 
gust 2/. 1874, Xixon Elliott bought from Mr. 
\'an Landingham his half-interest, and became 
the business manager, with Mr. Cavaness as 
editor. Mr. Cavaness, by the purchase of Mr. 
Elliott's interest, became the sole owner of the 
paper on February 25, 1875. The name of 
the paper was on April 4, 1878, changed back 
to the 



On Febraury 4. 18S6, A. F. Sloane and W. 
A. Shanklin leased the office from IMr. Cava- 
ness. and became its editors and publishers. 
With the opening of 1887 Mr. Shanklin re- 
tired, and ]\[r. Sloane continued' as sole editor 
and publisher until June 30 of the same year, 
when R. M. Roberts succeeded him in that po- 
sition. On October 5, 1887, Mr. Roberts' en- 
gagements calling him elsewhere. A. G. Drake 
assumed control of the paper, in which po- 
sition he continued for one year. ]\Ir. Cava- 
ness, having all the time retained the owner- 
ship, again took charge of the paper as its ed- 
itor and publis'her on October 4. 1888, and 
continued in that relation until September i. 
1899, when the paper passed under the control 
of William P. Hazen as editor and publisher, 
and under his management it has since ap- 


On ^March 4, 1876, this paper made its ap- 
pearance under the editorial charge of J. H. 
Hibbits, the publication of which he contin- 
ued imtil September i, 1877, when he an- 
nounced its suspension on account of want of 
support. On December 15, 1877, Frank \V. 
Frye, who had been employed in the Herald 
office under its jniblication by Capt. Hibbits, 
resurrected the pa]jer in a much-diminished 
size, it being a five-column c|uarti), and being 
changed from a Reiiublican to a Democratic 
sheet. It was continued under this manage- 
ment until February 16, 1878, when the office 
outfit was finally sold, and t'l'.e paper ceased. 


\\'as a temperance paner, edited and published 

by J. M. Cavaness and J. H. Hibbits. The first 
number appeared ^lay i, 1883. 


The 1st of April, 1872, the first issue of 
this paper appeared, under the editorial man- 
agement of F. D. Harkrider. in time to advo- 
cate the election of Geo. W. Fox for mayor. 
Its publication was continued until September, 
1872, when the outfit was advertised by the 
sherift" to be sold on execution. 


Alade its appearance in June, 1884. with R. 
F. Brown as editor. On January 22, 1885, 
its publication was suspended, arrangements 
having been made with the Advance to fill out 
its unexpired subscriijtion list. 


Was founded ^larch 16, 1888, by J. J. Rambo, 
who continued as its editor and publisher until 
November 11, 1897. when he sold the plant 
to -\I. A. Chesley, who has since been its editor 
and publisher. 


No. I, volume i, of this sheet appeared Au- 
gust 6, 1885, with Nelson Abbott and Airs. R. 
M. Abbott, editors and proprietors. At the 
close of its fourth volume the material of the 
office was removed to Oswego, and the La- 
bette County Statesiiiair appeared as its suc- 

settlers' guide. 

J. B. Cook, doing a "large land business at 

Chetopa, and desiring to advertise the same, 

j started a ])aper with the above name, which he 

I issued quarter! V from 1873 to 1880, inclusive. 





On January 5, 1871, the first issue of this 
paper appeared, purporting to be issued from 
Parsons, but being printed in fact at the Mon- 
itor office, in Fort Scott. Perry D. Martin 
was its editor and proprietor. After the is- 
suance of a few numbers its publication was 
suspended, Init it was again resurrected about 
the middle of the year, aj^pearing at this time 
as issued at Osage ^Mission. But two issues, 
however, appeared from its new home ; and 
a disagreement between Martin and his asso- 
ciates arising, Martin was forced to retire, and 
the paper was succeeded by the People's Ad- 


Shed its light through No. i, volume i, on 
June 17, 1871, M. W. Reynolds and Leslie J. 
Perry, editors and- proprietors. It was started 
as an eight-column, all home print. On Au- 
gust 1 2th of that year Mr. Perry sold his in- 
terest to Angell Matthewson, who continued 
with Reynolds as publisher until February 13. 
1872, when he sold to G. C. \\'est, from which 
time Reynolds & West conducted the paper 
imtil November, 1872, at which time West re- 
tired as associate editor, and was succeeded by 
Harry L. Gosling. In May, 1874, Reynolds, 
having theretofore been appointed receiver of 
the U. S. Land Office, retired from the manage- 
ment f)f the Sun, and G. C. West assumed full 
control, which he continued until April, 1875. 
when the Sun again passed under the control 
of Reynolds. Gifford & Winter, who up to 
about this time had been publishing the Par- 
sons Surprise, soon thereafter consolidated it 
with the Sun, the management of which was 

now under the control of Reynolds, Gifford & 
Winter, who continued its publication until 
November 11, 1876, when its publication as a 
weekly was discontinued, appearing occasion- 
ally thereafter, more as an advertising medium 
than anything else. On May 12, 1877, its pub- 
lication was renewed by Reynolds, and by him 
continued until December 14, 1878, when the 
entire outfit was sold to H. H. Lusk, who has 
continued its pubiication ever since. 

Daily Sun. — On the morning of Septem- 
ber 5, 1880, the Daily Sun made its appear- 
ance, and has continued regularly to appear 
since that time as the only morning daily pa- 
per published in the county, with the excep- 
tion of once or twice when one of the other 
papers appeared as a morning issue for a short 


Was conducted at Parsons by T. C. Cory and 
V. J. Knapp. It was started September. 1872, 
and published monthly thereafter until Janu- 
ary, 1873. It was a five-column, eight-page 
paper, nicely gotten up, carefully edited, with 
a large amount of reading matter intended to 
give a good idea of the great West to all per- 
sons seeking information in respect thereto. 


On Thursday, May 22. 1873, this paper was 
started by O. Edwards. A. W. Gifford, and A. 
C. Covell, and its jniblication continued for 
something less than one year, w'hen it failed for 
want of support. 


About the ist of April, 1874. the Parsons 
Weekly Herald was sold on chattel mortgage 


and bought l:)y J. B. Lamb, with which 
outfit the Parsons Eclipse was started by 
J. B. Lamb and J- B. Taylor as editors 
and proprietors. The first number appeared 
April 9, 1874. On :\Iarch 29. 1877, at 
the end of the third \-(ihime, Taylor with- 
drew, from which time its publication was 
regularly conducted by J. B. Lamb & Sons un- 
til the death of Dr. Lamb, December 26, 1890, 
since which time his sons conducted it. For 
several years past, Celsus A. Lamb has been 
sole manager and editor. 

The Daily Eclipse was started ]\Iay 9, 
1 88 1, and is farther spoken of under the head 
of dailies. 


About the middle of April, 1S73, A. W. 
Gififord started the Surprise, w'hich suspended 
after a few weeks' existence, and the force 
united with the Herald outfit. The latter hav- 
ing finished its career about the last of Feb- 
ruary, 1874, the Siir/^rise was resurrected, be- 
ing published by A. W. Gifford and W. L. 
Winter, and continued until January 26, 1875, 
when it surrendered to the inevitable. 


^^'as Started in October, 1882. by G. F. Kim- 
ball as editor and proprietor; it continued but a 
short time. 


In July, 1879, Copeland & Brewster, of 
Parsons, issued a real-estate sheet under the 
■ above title. 


The Daily Journal having been discontin- 
ued in January, H. C. Sourbeer, on ^lay i. 
1891, commenced the publication of the Jour- 

nal as a weekly, which was continued by him 
until November 13, 1891, w'hen it was merged 

into Mills' IVeekly JForld, and its publication 
under the title of the Journal ceased. 


Frank W. Frye and Will W. Frye were the 
founders of this paper, the first issue of which 
appeared February 24, 1883. From August, 
1883, to February, 1885, E. S. Stevens had 
charge of the job department of the paper. 
From February to October, 1886, George S. 
King had charge of the editorial department. 
Will W. Frye then did the editorial work for 
some time. On June i, 1889, Frank W. Frye 
purchased the interest of his brother in the es- 
tablishment, since which time he has been sole 
editor and proprietor. 


Was started in the summer of i888,by5heward 
& Gregg. After a few months Mr. Gregg sold 
his interest, and L. S. Sheward became the 
sole editor and proprietor. In January follow- 
ing. A. H. Tyler became editor, in which po- 
sition he continued until the close of the year, 
at which time Mr. Sheward again became its 
editor as well as publisher. Its publication was 
continued, with few interruptions, until near 
the close of 1890, when it altogether ceased. 

settlers' ADVOCATE. 

.\bout the 1st of August, 1872, Bancroft 
and Ciirv issued the first number of the Set- 
tlers' Advocate, at Parsons, and continued the 
publication as a monthly until the spring of 
1873, ^\'lid *fiey issued a weekly edition. 


In September, 1871, Walker & Thomas, 
real-estate agents at Parsons, started the pub- 



lication of a real-estate paper under the above 
title, to advertise their land business, the pub- 
lication of which continued for some two or 
three years. 


IMatthewson & Bi^s^gs issued this paper as 
a medium for advertising- their real-estate and 
loan business, from December i, 1884. 


This paper was started as an organ to en- 
able religious and educational associations to 
meet the public. It was more especially un- 
der the direction of the Y. ]\I. C. A. Each 
organization was expected to prepare the ma- 
terial ready for publication that it desired to 
have appear; thereby little editorial work was 
required. The first issue was dated July 15. 
1886. and but six monthlv numbers were is- 


Was a publication of a religious character, 
started in 1891 by Rev. P. M. Griffin. After 
a few issues other parties liecame associated 
with 'him, and the name of the paper was 
changed to that of 


Under this designation it lasted till the sum- 
mer of 1892, when it ceased for want of sup- 


\\'as removed from Altamont to Parsons in 
the middle of November. 1891. and on the 
17th of that month the first issue of the paper 
from the Parsons office appeared : it was con- 
ducted b}- H. C. Sourbeer and Harry Mills. 
At the end of about three months Mr. Mills' 

connection with it terminated, after which 
time it was conducted by Mr. Sourbeer until 
he changed its name to the JJ'csfeni World. 


Fnim June to August. 1883, H. C. Sour- 
beer publislied this paper almost exclusively as 
an advertising medium. The profits were sup- 
posed to be derived from advertising, though 
a little re\-enue came in through subscriptions. 


This paper was publisihed at Parsons; it 
was started July i, 1890, and, with some in- 
terruptions, continued till near the close of 
1891. \\'. H. Utley was its business manager 
at the start, but he sold out in the course of 
a few months, and it was conducted by several 
members of the County Alliance. George 
Campbell was its first editor; afterwards H. A. 
White edited it for a time; then A. H. Mc- 
Cormick, and still later other parties. 


J. M. Jones. James Tisdale, and perhaps 
others, were lueniliers of the firm of Jones & 
Co., who were the publishers of this paper. 
M. Byrne was secured as its editor. It was 
started in the summer of 1886, and its publi- 
cation was continued for perhaps two months, 
when die arrest of its editor and publishers 
on the charge of criminal libel forced it to 
suspend. A part of the defendants escaped 
punishment on the ground that the evidence 
did not directly connect them with the publi- 
cation of the libelous matter. 


\\'as started in October, 1892, by C. E. Ball, 
as an irregular publication through which he 
could advertise his business. 




The name of the paper published by Mr. 
Sourbeer was changed from Mills' Weekly 
IVorltl to IVcsfeni Jl'oiici, under which name 
its pulilication was conducted until September, 

1893, w'hen it ceased altogether. However, 
some two years later than this, une or two is- 
sues of a paper under this name were sent out ; 
the thought being that perhaps the paper might 
be revived. 


\\'as the title of a paper edited by H. C. Sour- 
beer for something more than a year, commenc- 
ing in January, 1895. 


In October, 1893. P. T. Foley purchased 
t'he name of the paper then published in Edna, 
and transferred it to a paper he was then start- 
ing in Parsons. This was done for the pur- 
pose of nominally complying with the law re- 
quiring a paper to ha\-e been regularly issued 
for at least one 3'eaT before legal notices could 
be published therein; and the intention of the 
publisher in starting this paper was to secure 
the county printing the ensuing year. The 
first issue of the -Parsons Independent was on 
October 28, 1893. D. H. Martin was its ed- 
itiir and so remained until he secured a po- 
sition in the State penitentiary sumetime in 

1894. In July, 1894, A. G. Stacy became 
editor, and continued to fill that position until 
about ihe last of May, 1895. On March i, 
1897, R. J. Elliott took editorial charge of the 
paper, and remained in that position until the 
middle of April, 1899, when he was succeeded 
l)y Miss Louise Duley, who held the position 
Slime three months. I have not secured the 

names of the persons who have prepared edi- 
torial work on the paper since that time. 


In the spring of 1898 E. S. Stevens and 
Charles Husband started the Daily Globe. Its 
publication was suspended during the sum- 
mer. In the fall of that year Charles Husband 
and H. A. Bird revived the daily and with it 
also issued a weekly. The daily ceased pub- 
lication in the fall of 1899, but the weekly was 
issued until the spring of 1900. 



This was the first daily paper published in 
Parsons, and was started in the fall of 1876, 
in September or October, by J. P. Coffin. It 
was a very diminutive slieet, but served as a 
means of giving the local news. Mr. Coffin 
continued its publication till May 5, 1877, when 
he suspended for the purpose of becoming 
traveling agent for the Sun. 


On August 20, 1877, the first number of 
this sheet appeared as the successor of the 
Daily Record, and, as the latter had been, un- 
der the management of J. P. Coffin. On Jan- 
uary 31. 1S78. he wrote his valedictory, the 
substance of which was, "Died for want of sup- 


Was started December 24, 1878, by McCarter 
Brothers, who conducted it as a daily until Au- 
gust 12, 1879, from which time to September 
4 it appeared as a tri-weekly, on which last 
date it again resumed its daily issue, and con- 
tinued as such till the last of April, 1880. 




Frank H. McCarter, proprietor of the In- 
fant JVondcr, which had just suspended pub- 
lication, associated himself with William Hig^- 
g^ins in the publication of the Republican. The 
first issue appeared on May 10, 1880, with 
William Higgins, editor. On March 22, 1881, 
Mr. Higgins retired from the paper and Mr. 
McCarter assumed full control. It was merged 
in the Eclipse, and its publication suspended 
May 9. 1881. 


Was started May 9, 1881, by J. B. Lamb and 
F. H. McCarter, the latter doing most of the 
work thereon for some time. The manage- 
ment of the daily was entirely separate from 
that of the weekly Eclipse for some months. 
For a number of years it has been conducted 
bv the Lambs alone, and has been a well-es- 
tablished daily, with a liberal support. 


As a continuation of the Infant Wonder, was 
resurrected aliout November, 1881, by F. H. 
McCarter and E. R. Marvin, after the former 
had become disconnected with tlie Eclipse. In 
January, 1882, E. C. Burnett bought out Mr. 
Marvin, and in connection with Mr. McCarter 
continued to conduct the JVondcr till Septem- 
ber of that year, when its publication was again 


Was started in Parsons in Octolier, 1882, by 
E. C. Burnett, wlio continued its publication till 
January, 1883. 



Was started September 5, 1880, and is spokea 
of in connection with the Weekly Sun. 


Was first seen a little before sunset on Wednes- 
day, April 6, 1 88 1. It was published by M. 
W. Reynolds and George Higgins for gratui- 
tous distribution. On September 2, 1881, Mr. 
Higgins retired, and removed to Paola to en- 
gage in the newspaper business at that place. 
The Star continued to give out more or less 
light till about the time of the fall election in. 


W. H. Martin was the founder of this pa- 
per, and conducted it from November 10, 1889, 
to September 10, 1890, when he sold the plant 
to H. C. Sourbeer & Sons, who continued its 
publication until January 15, 1891, at which 
time it was discontinued. 


Was started in the fall of 1890, and continued 
to appear for several months — perhaps nearly 
a year. It was under the same general man- 
agement as the State Alliance. A. J. Miller 
was its editor a part, and perhaps all of the 
time it ran. 


Was published a part of 1898 and 1899, as 
stated above under Parsons Globe. 


Was started April 23, 1900, and appeared reg-- 
ularly until publication was suspended, Alarch 
7, 1901. J. M. Cunningham was its editor and 
publisher all the time. 





On or about January 17, 1884, the first 
number of this paper made its appearance un- 
der the management of — — Gastin and Milton 
Fuller, and continued under their charge un- 
til about the ist of June, when the material 
was purchased by C. Len. Albin. 


C. Len. Albin, having purchased the out- 
fit of the Times, started the Sentinel, the first 
number of whidh appeared July 4, ,1884, and 
was continued by him until July 10, 1885, 
when he sold the paper to H. C. Blanchard. 
B. F. Godfrey was associated with Albin in 
the editorship of the Sentinel for a short time 
before Albin sold to Blanchard. Blanchard 
conducted the paper alone from the time of his 
purchase until September 1 1 of that year, when 
he sold one-half interest therein to Frank 
Wilkins, from which time Blanchard & Wilkins 
published it until January 15, 1886, when 
Blanchard sold his interest therein to Harry 
Mills ; and on the 29th of the same month Mills 
also bought Wilkins' interest, and became sole 
editor and proprietor. On January 4, 1886, C. 
S. Newlon having bought a half-interest, the 
paper appeared under the management of Mills 
& Newlon. On March 14, 1886, Mr. Mills 
sold his interest to Dr. Newlon, and Mrs. 
Lizzie Newlon became editor and publisher, 
which she continued until January 5, 1889, 
when she was succeeded in the editorial chair 
by W. H. Conner. On October 2^. 1889, W. 
J. Lough took charge as editor and publisher, 
and conducted the paper till July 16, 1890, 
when its publication ceased. 


After C. Len. Albin sold his interest in the 
Sentinel, 'he associated with him W. T. Pickett, 
and they two purchased a printing office outfit, 
land on September 11, 1885, started the Alta- 
mont A^eii's which was a five-column quarto. 
After two issues of the paper Albin sold his 
interest therein to Mr. Pickett, who at once 
made arrangements for its removal to Mound 

mills' weekly world. 

About the ist of December, 1888, Harry 
Mills started a small sheet with the above title, 
at Cherry vale, Kansas. The first- week in 
March, 1889, he removed the plant to Alta- 
mont, from which place he issued it from that 
time until the middle of November, 1891, when 
he sold an interest therein to H. C. Sourbeer, 
who removed the plant to Parsons, from which 
place it was issued until its name was changed 
to the Western JVorld. 


Appeared January 25, 1895, under the man- 
agement of P. S. Ray and H. Bristom. After 
a few weeks, Mr. Ray sold his interest in the 
paper to his partner, who continued its publi- 
cation until the spring of 1896, when the plant 
was sold to iNlr. Switzer and consolidated with 
the Jl'liite Banner. 


W'as founded l.iy Harry ]\Iills, and the first 
issue appeared August 15. 1896. Mr. IMills 
continued to conduct the paper until the close 
of 1897, when it was merged in the JJliite 
Banner, which was then publisihed in Alta- 



Has been conducted by J. L. Switzer from the 
time it was first started until tlie present. It 
first appeared in June, 1894, as a monthly and 
was printed on a farm. After running six 
months as a monthly, it was changed to a semi- 
monthly. In July, 1894, the press from which 
it was issued was removed to Wilsonton, whei^e 
the paper was published for nearly a year. It 
was then removed to Altamont, and the paper 
changed to a weekly. The first issue from 
the Altamont office appeared June 21. 1895, 
since which time it has appeared each week. 



December 8, 1886, the first number of this 
paper appeared, with J. J. Fields as editor 
and Harry Mills as publis'her. It was a small 
six-column folio. The publication continued 
some five or six weeks, -when the good-will 
of the office was sold to C. ]\I. Brown, of the 
Mound Valley Nczcs. 


Succeeded the Enterprise. It was started by 
C. M. Brown, January 19, 1887. He moved 
the Mound Valley Nrn's office to Edna, where 
he published the Era about three months, when 
it ceased, and Edna was again wit'hout a paper 
for a short time. 


On April 15, 1887, J. D. IMcKeehen, as 
editor and proprietor, brought out No. i of 
the Edna Enterprise under his management, 
he having theretofore purchased the material 
of the old office. He continued its publication 
until September of that year. 


John Truby and W. A. Peffer, Jr., started 
the publication of t4iis paper, the first number 
appearing October 28, 1887. The last of April, 
1888, J. H. Morse became its editor, and con- 
tinued its publication until the close of June of 
that year. 


Was Started December 14, 1889, by G. W. 
Liever and A. C. Veach. In June, 1890, Mr. 
Liever sold his interest in the paper to Mr. 
Veach, who continued to publish it alone. On 
October 21, 1893, appeared the last issue of 
the Edna Independent. Mr. Veach then sold 
fhe title of the paper, viz. : the "Independent," 
to parties who wanted to commence the pub- 
lication of a paper in Parsons, and who wanted 
to be able to have it appear as a paper that had 
been published at least one year, in order to 
enable them to secure the county printing. 


After the sale of the title of his paper as 
above stated. Mr. Veach continued its publica- 
tion under the name of the Neivs^ the first is- 
sue of which was on October 28, 1893, and the 
last issue on September 8, 1894. Mr. Veach 
then removed his plant to Arkansas. 


\\'. E. Staige commenced the publication 
of the Snn November 22, 1894, and has con- 
tinued its publication ever since. 


In the latter part of September, 1899, the 
Enterprise made its appearance under the man- 
agement of Dr. Johnson. On January I, 1900, 
the paper passed under the editorial manage- 



ment of J. L. Griffith, who conducted it for one 
year. On January i, 1901, WiUiam A. Blair 
and George Reasor became the owners of the 
paper, under the firm name of Reasor & Blair, 
and its publication has been continued by them. 



The first paper credited to Mound Valley 
was designated the Times, and was started 
December 16, 188 1. It was printed by Brooks 
& Patrick, at the Republican office, in Oswego, 
and appeared as under the editorship of George 
Campbell. However, all the paper except a 
few local items was fhe same as the Oswego 
Republican. This arrangement was unsatis- 
factory to the citizens of Mound Valley, and 
the paper ran only a few weeks. 


The first issue of the Herald appeared April 
6. 1882, with George Campbell as editor and 
proprietor. Mr. Campbell conducted it until 
the fall of that year, when he sold to C. L. 
Albin, who continued to edit and publish it 
until }ilay i, 1884, when it came under the 
control of W. F. Tilirall, who has since then 
been its editor and ]nil)lisher. 


About the ist of October. 1885, L. C. W'il- 
moth and \V. C. Pickett became the jnint own- 
ers of the office material from whicli the Alta- 
mont News had been printed. This they re- 
moved to Mound Valley, and commenced the 
publication of the News at that point. In t'he 
spring of 1886 a company of several of the 
liusiness men of ]Mound Valley was formed, 
under the title of "The Mound Valley News 
Company." for the purpose of publishing this 

paper. About June i, 1886, C. M. Brown and 
T. Rowen, Jr., became owners of the paper, 
and with L. C. Wilmoth as editor conducted 
it until September 9th, when Mr. Rowen re- 
tired and Mr. Brown became editor and pro- 
prietor, continuing Mr. Wilmoth as associate 
editor. The publication of the paper was sus- 
pended about the middle of January, 1887. 


The first number of this paper was dated 
February 19, 1887. It was, however, issued 
ahead of its date. It purported to be published 
by the Farmers' and Laborers' Cooperative 
Union, and was edited by E. H. Barnhart. In 
June, 1887, C. L. Albin appeared as editor. 
During August and September its publication 
was suspended, but was resumed again in Oc- 
tober, with G. S. Worthington editor. Its pub- 
lication was continued until the early part of 
1888. During all of its existence George 
Campbell was its principal, if not entire owner, 
and while he does not appear as editor, yet the 
paper was principally conducted by him. 



On Thursday, September 8, 1870, a well- 
filled seven-column paper under the above title 
appeared from the printing-office just started 
at the town of Labette, with J. S. Waters as 
editor and proprietor. On October 13th Mr. 
Waters associated with him in the manage- 
ment of the paper, Thomas Irish. ^Mr. \\'aters 
having been elected county attorney at the No- 
vember election in 1870, he retired from the 
editorship of the Sentinel on November 24th, 
from which time it was conducted by j\Ir. Irish 
until sometime in March. 1871, when its pub- 
lication ceased for a short time. About the 



1st of April, liowever, it was revived by the 
Albin Brothers, who carried on its publication 
for some time, when it was given up by them 
as a losing- venture. About ]\Iay 10, 1872, 
Sheldon & Jo'hnson attempted its resurrection, 
and tried to put it forth for some months, 
when it again became defunct. On the sus- 
pension of the Oswego Register, in May, 1873, 
Smith, One of the former proprietors of that 
paper, bought the Labette Sentinel material 
and moved it to Nevada, AIo.. and there used 
it in starting a new paper at that point. 


Was founded January 5, 1894, by ^^^ L. Piatt, 
wiho conducted it until the fall of 1895, when he 
sold it to A. and J. S. Piatt. February 15, 
1897, the plant was destroyed by fire. A new 
outfit was soon procured, and the publication of 
the Star was resumed and continued until July 
I, 1898. when it ceased. 


Made its appearance October 21, 1899. under 
the management of W. L. Piatt, who continues 
to edit and publish it. 



Was started at Wilsonton, :\Iay i, 1888, by 
Mrs. Ella B. Wilson, since which time she has 
continued to conduct it as editor and proprietor. 
It is published monthly. 


Whid.T ^\•as first published on a farm for a 
time, was published in Wilsonton from July, 
1894, to June, 1895, when it was removed to 
Altamont, where it has since remained. 



Made its first appearance September i. 1898, 
and was the first paper published in Dennis. 
It was not, in fact, printed in Dennis, Ijut in 
Thayer ; but it purported to come from Dennis. 
It was edited by A. E. Miller. It only lived 
three months. 


Some three months after the death of the 
Hustler, another effort was made to establish 
a paper in Dennis. In February, 1899. A. E. 
Miller and Walter I. Thorne started the 
Leader, which for two months was printed in 
the Pal I ad i It n I ofiice in Parsons. The propri- 
etors then purchased a printing outfit of their 
own and the work on the paper was then done 
in Dennis. The first issue was dated February 
9, 1899. After nine months, Mr. Thorne sold 
his interest in the paper to G. A. Miller. 
Miller Brothers continued to publish the paper 
until November 15. 1900, after which the plant 
was removed to Thayer. 



The first issue of this paper was dated at 
Parsons, September i, 1881. It was a small 
eight-page paper, started by \\'. B. Avery, a 
colored minister, and was intended as a medi- 
um for furnishing the colored jjopulation with 
a line of reading-matter in which they would 
be especially interested, to be issued only 
monthly. But Mr. Brooks, of the Oswego 
Republican, entered into an agreement with 
j\Ir. Avery for publis'liing his paper at the Re- 


publican office. It was very much enlarged 
in size, and issued weekly instead of monthly. 
While continuing under the editorship of Mr. 
Avery, the most of the material was the same 
as that which simultaneously appeared in the 
Weekly Republican. The colored people did 
not furnisih a sufficient patronage to justify 
its continuance, and its publication ceased after 
some three or four months. 


Was started by the colored people of the coun- 
ty as an avenue by which to make known to 
the public their views, wants, and intentions, 
and as a means of educating their young peo- 
ple in the duties of citizenship. It was issued 
from Parsons. The first number was dated 
July 9, 1892. E. M. Woods was editor and 
E. W. Dorsey business manager. But in a 

short time Mr. Dorsey wit'hdrew to become 
president of the Blade company. The publi- 
cation of this paper was discontinued with the 
close of 1892. 


A little disagreement arising between the 
proprietors of the Eye-Opener, a division of 
interest seemed advisable to them, and on Au- 
gust 20, 1892, the Parsons Weekly Blade was 
started, with S. O. Clayton, editor; E. W. 
Dorsey, president; and Charles A. Morris, 
business manager. After a term of five years 
as editor, Mr. Clavton retired and was suc- 
ceeded by J. E. Johnson. In 1898 t*he man- 
agement of the paper passed to J. M. Dorsey, 
with whom it continued two years. Its publi- 
cation then went into the hands of a company, 
and Charles A. Morris became its editor; and 
under this management it is now conducted. 


At the very opening of this topic I want 
to say that I do not expect to be able to men- 
tion the name of everyone who has been a mem- 
ber of our bar : many of them were here but a 
short time and left nothing to particularly call 
to mind their sojourn among us. I know of 
nothing that will furnish even the names of 
these parties except the numberless detailed 
records of court proceedings, and were one to 
go through all these he could hardly be sure 
he had the names of all members of the bar 
who have resided in the county. All I can 
say is that I shall say something of all whom 
I can recall and no name will be intentionally 


The first term of fhe district court in this 
county was held in the second story of the 
only two-story frame building then standing 
on the Oswego town-site ; it was located on 
the southwest corner of block 25 and had just 
been erected by Thomas J. Buntain. During 
1868 and the spring term of 1869, court was 
held in different rented rooms. At the con- 
vening of the October (1869) term, court 
opened in the new frame building which Os- 
wego had given to the county for a court- 

The first term of court was formally 
opened in the afternoon of Monday, October 
7, 1867, and adjourned sine die on Friday, the 

nth, although no business was transacted 
after Thursday. There was no trial and de- 
termination of any cause at this term of court. 
The business principallv consisted in the ad- 
mission of attorneys and the hearing and pass- 
ing on some preliminary motions. 

At the time of its organization this county 
was comprised in the Seventh judicial district, 
and so remained until March 24, 1870, at 
which time the la\\- creating the Eleventh ju- 
dicial district went into effect. This county 
continued in the Eleventh judicial district un- 
til Februar_y 22. 1901, on which day the law 
went into effect constituting Labette and Mont- 
gomery bounties the Eourteenth judicial dis- 


WHiile we were a part of the Seventh ju- 
dicial district, two different judges presided 
over our court; and during the time we were 
within the bounds of the Eleventh judicial dis- 
trict seven different persons held the office of 

W. A. Spriggs, residing at Garnett, pre- 
sided over our court at its first session. He 
is the only one of our judges whom I have 
never known personally. He is said to have 
been a man of honor and fair ability. Having 
held court here for less than a week, he made 
no deep impression on our judicial matters. 

In the fall of 1867, John R. Goodwin was 


elected judge of the Seventh judicial district, 
and presided in our court during the next two 
years. He was fairly well versed in the law 
but owed his popularity more to his jovial na- 
ture and ability to mix with t'he boys than to 
his legal erudition. It required business of 
more tlian usual importance or to be more 
than usually pressing in its character to pre- 
vent his adjourning court for the purpose of 
accepting an invitation to assist sampling what 
were supposed to be eood "warming" or "cool- 
ing" drinks, or to engage in a game of cards. 
However, Judge Goodwin kept the business of 
the court well in hand and gave quite general 

The first two judges of the Eleventh ju- 
dicial district were the ^^'ebb brothers, both 
of whom were well versed in the principles of 
the common law, and also possessed of nat- 
ural abilities as lawyers. 

When the bill was passed creating the new 
district, the Governor appointed William C. 
Webb, then residing at Fort Scott, its first 
judge. He was periiaps too technical to be a 
great lawyer or judge, but he was certainly 
very much above the ordinary lawyers who then 
were practicing in this part of the State. He 
was a hard worker, a stickler for form and 
order, and did much to bring the business of 
the court into a more orderly and consistent 
condition than it had ever before been in. 

Henry G. Webb was elected judge of the 
district in November, 1870. and succeeded his 
brother on the bench. Two strangers could 
scarcely be more unlike than were these 
brothers. What William got in the way of 
legal knowledge by study and hard work, 
Henry absorbed of took intuitively. Had the 
latter been disposed to have worked as 'hard as 
did tlie former there is no telling what posi- 
tion he might lia\'e attained as a lawyer. Hen- 

ry was much less technical and much broader 
in his legal views than was his brother but was 
not so orderly in his methods. For ability to 
clearly and forcibly state a legal proposition, 
Henry G. Webb has never had an equal on the 
bench of this district. He resigned his position 
as judge in the early part of 1873 and has since 
been a practitioner at the bar. 

Bishop W. Perkins of Oswego was appoint- 
ed to the bench on the retirement of Judge 
Webb in the fore part of 1873. This appoint- 
ment was considered to have been the reward 
of efficient work done for Gov. Osborne in the 
preceding campaign no less than because of 
professional merit. Judge Perkins was a fair 
lawyer and made an efficient judge, but it was 
in the field of politics, rather than in that of 
jurisprudence, that he excelled. He was a born 
politician and had an instinctive scent for the 
trail of public sentiment. He was appointed 
county attorney a few weeks after he came to 
Oswego in 1869, and from that time, until 
within a few months before his death in 1894, 
he was a continuous office holder. He remained 
on the bench until January, 1883, when his offi- 
cial station was transferred from the bench to 

George Chandler, of Independence, was 
elected judge of the district in November, 1882, 
assumed the duties of his office in January, 
1883, and held the position until the spring of 
1889, when he resigned to accept the position 
of Assistant Secretary of the Interior in the 
cabinet of President Harrison. Judge Chan- 
dler was a man of a good deal of natural abil- 
ity and acquired power. His physical organi- 
zation was capable of sustaining an unlimited 
amount of work and it was largely to this and 
'his natural industry that he owed his success. 
As a judge he had some elements of strength 
and quite as many of weakness. He prided 



himself on instructing a jury; yet it was the 
general opinion of the profession, that a jury 
would know less of the real merits of a case 
when he was through giving his instructions 
than when he commenced. He lacked the abil- 
ity to grasp and clearly and concisely state the 
points at issue and then announce the law ap- 
plicable thereto. His system of conducting 
court business frequently required parties with 
Jarge numbers of witnesses to remain about 
the court for days before their cases could be 
reached. His requirement of punctuality on 
the part of litigants, attorneys, jurors and wit- 
nesses became actually burdensome and tend- 
ed to retard rather than facilitate the dispatch 
of business. Notwithstanding his defects, he 
was an able and popular judge. 

John N. Ritter of Columbus was appointed 
to succeed Judge Chandler on the bench, and 
served till after the November election in iSSg ; 
he was defeated for the position at that election. 
Judge Ritter was an honest, ])ainstaking, care- 
ful, industrious and capable attorney, and he 
carried these qualities with him^ on the bench. 
As a lawyer probably no one would place him 
in the first rank in the bar of the State, but in 
the second ranks he would take an honorable 
place. He made a much more able and com- 
petent judge than the profession generally 
thought he would at the time of his appoint- 
ment. His retirement from the bench was the 
source of regret to very many who had not been 
especially anxious to see him appointed. 

Jerry D. McCue of Independence was elect- 
ed judge in November, 1889, and served dur- 
ing the next five years. Mr. McCue was the 
first attorney who settled in this county and 
had always stood high at the bar. His 
personal indulgences in the early days of his 
residence among us had deprived him of much 
of the business which he would otherwise have 

obtained. Perhaps on this account, more than 
for any other reason, lie left Oswego and set- 
tled in Independence. Taking into considera- 
tion all of his qualities. I think it may be safe- 
ly said we have never had an alaler judge on 
the bench of this district than was Judge Mc- 
Cue. Naturally, he had a judicial mind. His 
professional preparation had been pursued in 
Illinois where he became well grounded in the 
principles of common law. His confidence in 
his own ability almost amounted to egotism 
and i)re\-ented any feeling of diffidence either 
at the bar or on the bench. This confidence 
enabled him to successfully use all 'his powers. 
His record on the bench is one of which he may 
well be proud. 

Andy H. Skidmore of Columbus was elect- 
ed district judge in November, 1894, and has 
served from the January following, during 
which time he has gained in his hold on the 
j^eople. Judge Skidmore has had a popularity 
on the bench which some have found it dif- 
ficult to account for. It can not be said to be 
altogether owing to his judicial ability. Per- 
haps it is in a measure owing to his uniform 
good nature, his close attention to the pulilic 
business, his painstaking effort to hear all par- 
ties and consider all interests, and then to ren- 
der such decision as he thinks the facts war- 
rant. The division of the Eleventh judicial 
district and the placing of this county in a 
newly constituted district takes us from Judge 
Skidmore's jurisdiction. As this history is 
not supposed to enter the twentieth century, I 
shall not speak of the newly appointed occu- 
pant of the bench. 


Jerry D. McCue was the first lawyer to set- 
tle in Labette county. He had been admitted 


to fhe bar in Illinois, but had little, if any, 
practice there. He reached Oswego in July 
1867. In September he attended the first term 
of court in Neosho county and was admitted 
to the Kansas bar there, so that, when our 
court convened in October he was an author- 
ized practitioner under the Kansas laws. Dur- 
ing his residence here he certainly had as much 
business as any member of the bar. In 1871 
he moved to Independence where he resided 
and practiced till his election as district judge. 
Next in order of time came N. L. Hibbard 
who arrived in Oswego in August, 1867. He 
had' been the prosecuting attorney of his coun- 
ty and naturally felt competent to compete with 
those whom he had to meet in court here, all 
of whom were young men. Mr. Hibbard's 
laugh was the one quality by which he will be 
longest remembered by those who knew him 
here : it had almost the volume of a locomotive 
whistle. In 1870, without informing the public 
of his intentions, he took his departure from 
our midst. 

W. J. Parkinson came to Oswego about the 
same time as Mr. Hibbard, and the two joined 
forces for the practice of their profession. The 
firm of Hibbard' & Parkinson was tlie first law 
partnership in the county. Mr. Parkinson had 
recently come from one of the eastern states 
and had temporarily stopped in Leavenworth 
where he had been admitted to the bar of Kan- 
sas, so that he was the first lawyer w'ho had 
been admitted to the bar in this state to settle 
in this county. He is said to have been a young 
man of fine address and good ability. On the 
first day of our first term of court on October 
7, 1867, Judge Spriggs appointed Mr. Parkin- 
son county attorney ; before that time there had 
been no county attorney. In November of that 
same year Mr. Parkinson left the county and, 

as I am informed, went east and entered tlie 

The next lawyer to cast his lot among us 
was Walter P. Bishop, who arrived in Oswego 
in September, 1867, having already been ad- 
mitted to the bar in Douglas county before 
coming here. Of all the attorneys who have 
practiced at this bar there has probably been 
no one w'ho prided himself more on his good 
looks and elegant appearance than did Mr. 
Bishop. He had quite a good deal of ability 
and still more conceit. His good looks, abil- 
ity and self assurance made him a popular at- 
torney, and he was able to divide with Mr. 
McCue most of the best business of the county 
during the first two or three years after they 
came. Mr. Bishop was for a time county at- 
torney, and afterwards probate judge. In 
1870 he represented the county in the Legisla- 
ture. His career at the bar was then virtually 
closed. He went to Topeka and failed to se- 
cure business ; temporarily he came back to Os- 
wego and failed here. He then went to Col- 
orado where he died. The outcome of his ca- 
reer fell far short of what its opening prom- 
ised it might be. 

The four attorneys whom I have named are 
the only ones who had settled in the county, 
and who had been admitted to the bar prior to 
the opening of the first term of our district 
court. But at that term of court there appeared 
as one of the practitioners of the bar John Se- 
crest, of Humboldt, who sometime thereafter 
settled at Chetopa, where he lived several 
years. Some of his enemies claimed that in his 
business he had more practices than practice. 
He was finally killed by a band of outlaws in 
the Indian Territory. 

Of these five attorneys all had been admit- 
ted to practice in Kansas before the opening of 



our first term of court except Mr. Hibbard, and 
he was made a member of the Kansas bar on 
the first day of the term. The only other at- 
torneys who appear from the records to have 
been in attendance at that term of court were 
W. A. Jolinson, of Garnett, and John R. 
Goodwin, of Humboldt. 

Five persons who were then "old settlers" 
in the county, not one of whom had ever pre- 
tended to read law, and perhaps neither of 
whom had ever looked in a law book, unless it 
were the statutes, were regularly admitted to 
the bar, after having "passed a satisfactory ex- 
amination," at the first term of our court. The 
examination was probably on the c|uality of the 
liquor furnished by the candidates to the com- 
mittee. At first sight the record might indi- 
cate that some of these parties were admitted 
the first day, but from the \v'hole record I am 
satisfied that all that was done the first day was 
the appointment of two committees on examin- 
ation. Three of these parties were admitted 
on the second day of the term, one on the 
third day, and the other on the fourth day. 
The following are the names of the parties 
thus admitted to the bar, in the order of their 
admission : J. S. Waters, C. H. Bent, Dr. J. 
F. Newlon, W. C. Watkins, and C. C. Clover. 
Mr. Waters is the only one of these who ever 
became a practicing lawyer. It is true that Mr. 
Bent succeeded Mr. Parkinson as county attor- 
ney, but Mr. Bishop, who acted as his deputy 
or assistant, did all the work. Mr. Bent was 
the first and Mr. ^\'atkins the second repre- 
sentative in the Legislature from this county. 
The latter was commonly known as "the gen- 
tleman from "U. bet," because his favorite 
expression of assent was "you bet." Mr. Wat- 
ers was never much of a lawyer, but he was a 
shrewd manager and very successful in local 
politics. He served several terms as county 

attorney, represented the county in the Legisla- 
ture, and subsequently was appointed to a po- 
sition in one of the U. S. land offices in Idaho. 

With the exception of Mr. Waters, who re- 
sided at Montana, all of the attorneys I have 
named belonging to this county were located 
at Oswego. The next who came to the county 
chose Chetopa as his place of residence. 

James H. Crichton came from Indiana to 
Chetopa in the spring of 1868. For a number 
of years he has been, in respect to residence, 
the oldest attorney in the county. At an early 
age Mr. Crichton figured quite prominently in 
politics ; he was twice a candidate for the State 
Senate, and was once or twice elected repre- 
sentative. For several years after coming here, 
he held quite a prominent place at the bar and 
had a very fair business ; but he allowed poli- 
tics and some other matters to interfere with 
his professional business, and for a number 
of years past he has seldom appeared in court 
and has practically abandoned practice. 

W. C. Pew settled in Oswego in the sum- 
mer of 1868 and remained until the early spring 
of the following year. While he was a well 
read lawyer he was not adapted to western 
ways of those days and got little business. 

W. P. Lamb was the worst hater of all hu- 
manity, the most untiring prosecutor of any 
one whom he got in his power, the most bitter 
in his speech, against court and opposing coun- 
sel, and one of the most uniformly unsuccess- 
ful lawyers who ever practiced at this bar. Not 
without a certain degree of native ability and 
acquired culture, he had been so long accus- 
tomed to have his hand against every other 
man's hand that to instinctively dislike every 
other man became a quality of his mind. Those 
who slept within hearing distance of him dur- 
ing court said he was accustomed to spend a 
good portion of the night in cursing some one 



with whom lie had been brought in contact 
during the day. An intensely pro-slavery 
man, he had come to Kansas in an early day to 
assist in making her a slave state. He had been 
quite prominent as an attorney while that ele- 
ment was in the ascendant, but the habits of 
life and business which he had thus acquired 
had not fitted him to be a successful practi- 
tioner among the people who settled t'his 
county. He came here in the fall of i8h8 set- 
tled at Chetopa where he made his home till 
late in the "seventies" when he went fnrther 

W. AI. Rogers came to this county about 
the close of 1868 and settled in INIound Valley 
township. In his former home he had been 
around the court room enough to learn several 
legal terms and when he came to this county 
he commenced to assist his neig'hbors to get 
into difficulty by attending to their cases in jus- 
tice court. In 1 87 1 he secured a favorable re- 
port from an examining committee and the 
court permitted him to be sworn as a member 
of the bar. 

J. C. Strang lived at Oswego and was glad 
to meet Mr. Rogers in legal argument. He 
probably knew more legal terms than did his 
rival but he had drank so much more whisky 
that he could not always make as good use of 
them. He was never entrusted with any busi- 
ness and therefore seldom, if e\-er, did any one 
any damage. 

J. F. Bellamy had been admitted to the bar 
in Indiana before settling at Jacksonville, in the 
northeast corner of this county. At this point 
he taught school and offered his services as a 
lawyer, but the extent of his practice was very 
limited. In a few years he went back to In- 
diana where he met with much better success. 
He subsequently returned to this state and is 

now one of the prominent attorneys of Mont- 
gomery county. 

John H. Gunn also lived at or near Jack- 
sonville. He had no knowledge of law and 
the only way 'he attempted to succeed as a law- 
yer was by a kind of practice so reprehensible 
that no reputable attorney would indulge in it. 
The profession was honored by his removal 
from the county in the latter part of 1869. 

About the close of 1869. Joseph S. Gage lo- 
cated at Chetopa and was admitted to the bar 
of the county in April. 1870. He staid here 
but a short time and did no legal business to 
speak of. 

. B. \X. Perkins located in Oswego in April, 
1869, and at once formed a partnership with 
W. P. Bishop which continued until his ap- 
pointment as district judge. The firm of Bish- 
op & Perkins always had a good business. 

Nelson Case arrived in Oswego, May 15, 
1869, and, since the retirement of Mr. Crich- 
ton from acti\-e practice, 'he has been, in point 
of residence, the senior member of the bar of 
this county. 

J. J. Brown found his way to Oswego in 
June, 1869, and practiced his profession here 
till 1874 when he removed to Oregon. He had 
received a good education and had a faculty 
of making the most out of his position. He 
was something of a society man and made a 
good many friends. He was fairly successful 
while he remained in Oswego, but his success 
here was nothing in comparison to what it was 
on the Pacific slope. He there became one of 
the recognized leading financial men. I may 
say that he made his money in business and 
not simply in the practice of his profession. 

In July, 1869, W. B. Glasse came to Os- 
wego and at once, in connection with J. J. 
Brown, formed the firm of Brown & Glasse. 



Mr. Glasse liad a military experience which 
proved serviceable to him, even in the practice 
of law. In about a year from the formation of 
their partnership, Browm & Glasse took in a 
new partner and the firm became Adams, 
Brown & Glasse. After the dissolution of this 
firm Col. Glasse formed with H. G. Webb the 
firm of Webb & Glasse. From January i, 
1885, till Col. Glasse removed to Columbus ir. 
May, 1893, he was in partnership with Nelson 
Case under the firm name of Case & Glasse. 
Since that time he has been practicing "his pro- 
fession at Columbus. From his very first set- 
tlement in the county Col. Glasse took a high 
rank at the bar. He is the soul of honor, is 
well read in the law, is a forcible advocate and 
inspires with confidence all with whom he 
comes in contact. He served a term in the 
State Senate and was auditor of the county 
several years. 

M. S. Adams came to Oswego from Leav- 
enworth early in 1870. Sometime that year he 
became a partner of Brown & Glasse. He had 
been a prominent attorney and politician at 
Leavenworth but liad only moderate success in 
this county. He went from here to Wichita. 
Early in 1869 Frank M. Graham settled in 
Chetopa and became the junior member of the 
firm of Crichton & Graham. He was better 
adapted to office work than his partner and add- 
ed much to the success of the firm. He was 
popular in Chetopa and exercised much influ- 
ence in local matters. 

F. A. Bettis came to Oswego in August, 
1869. and soon went into partnership with Mr. 
McCue. Some months thereafter the firm l^e- 
came McCue, Bettis & Kelso. When Mr. Mc- 
Cue removed to Independence the firm of Bet- 
tis & Kelso became, perhaps, the leading firm 
of lawyers in the county. During ^lis stay here, 
Mr. Bettis had two or three other partners for 

a time. As an all around lawyer, adapted to 
all kinds of business, we have had few, if any, 
lawyers who excelled Mr. Bettis. Perhaps his 
greatest strength lav in his ability to at once 
meet an unexpected thrust from an adversary ; 
it was difficult to surprise him. He was quick 
to take advantage of a weak point in an op- 
ponent's case. If people could 'have had as 
much confidence in Mr. Bettis' integrity as they 
had in his legal ability he would have a higher 
rank at the bar than he secured. 

M. V. B. Bennett came from Iowa to Os- 
wego in the spring of 1870. He was an intense 
partisan, had been an opponent of the adminis- 
tration in the Civil war. and brought with him 
to Oswego material for starting a newspaper. 
For several months he united editorial work on 
the Oswego Democrat with the practice of the 
law. In the fall of that year he removed, with 
his paper, to Independence. He subsequently 
became a noted temperance lecturer, but at the 
time he resided in Oswego he had no reputa- 
tion in that direction. At the bar he was much 
stronger as an advocate than as a counsellor 
and he never took high rank as a lawyer, al- 
though he commanded a very fair practice. 

J. D. Gamble came to Oswego with I\Ir. 
Bennett and became his partner. He was the 
office man of the firm of Bennett & Gamble. and 
had fair ability in that line of work. He went 
to Independence with Mr. Bennett. 

J. D. Conderman has never secured the 
business that his merits have entitled him to. 
He located in Chetopa in June. 1870, where he 
has since resided. He served one term very 
acceptably as county attorney. He lacks the 
aggressiveness of disposition to gain what prop_ 
erly belongs to him. Had he asserted himself 
more he might have attained a much better 
practice than he has enjoyed. He has the con- 
fidence and respect of all who know him. 


J. B. Zeigler came to Oswego in the sum- 
mer of 1870. He was a fine appearing young 
man and did some clerical work in some of the 
offices but did not secure any legal practice. 
The next year he went to Independence where 
he has built up a fine practice. 

J. J. Long was admitted to the bar of this 
county in November, 1870. He had t'he mis- 
fortune of being associated with W. P. Lamb 
and had no success while he remained here. 

E. D. Graybill had been a school teacher in 
Osage township. About the close of 1870 he 
commenced to get connected with cases com- 
menced in justice court and sometimes induced 
the litigants to appeal them, and thus had a 
little practice in the district court. In three or 
four years from that time he left the county. 

W. H. Carpenter of Osage township was a 
justice of the peace and sometimes represented 
his neighbors as their attorney before other 
justices. He had been admitted to the bar in 
Ohio, but had never practiced law. He was 
formally admitted to the bar of this county 
early in 1871, but never had any practice and 
soon removed from the county. 

David Kelso came to this county in the 
summer of 1870. He first located at Chetopa, 
but soon removed to Oswego and became a 
partner of McCue & Bettis. He was one of the 
few men of the bar who always ranked much 
higher than his merits as a lawyer entitled 
him. He 'had social qualities which made him 
quite popular, and he was able to secure good 
positions. He held a fine position in the legal 
department of two or three railroad companies 
for several j^ears. He acquired a love for liquor 
which very much interfered with his successful 
conduct of business. 

T. L. Darlow was another law}-er who lo- 
cated in Oswego in the summer of 1870. He 
'had not had much practice when he came here. 

was more earnest and persistent than careful 
and studious in his habits, and did not make 
that growth as a lawyer which he, perhaps, 
might have done. He was a member of two 
or three firms while here and did a fairly good 

J. G. Parkhurst was the first attorney to 
settle in Parsons. He came there at the close 
of 1870 before the town was fairly laid out, 
and at once secured a fairly good business. He 
was a lawyer with some merits who also lacked 
some qualifications for becoming a first class 
practitioner. In a few years he returned to 

T. \V. Thornton came to Parsons about the 
same time as Mr. Parkhurst, but did not stay 
long enough to attain any standing at the bar. 
E. E. Hastings first came to Oswego, but 
after a short stay here located in Parsons near 
the close of 1870, where he remained but a few 
months. His practice while here was not suffi- 
cient to exhibit any legal ability although he 
was a young man of good appearance and 
seemingl}' fair ability. 

George W. Fox settled in Chetopa in De- 
cember, 1870, where he made his home for 
more than ten years. He went to the Pacific 
slope in the "eig'hties." While here he stud- 
ied politics and did something at practicing 
law; but being a member of the minority party 
his political leadership did not prove very re- 
nmnerati\-e. In his professional practice he de- 
pended more on his ability to know and make 
use of men's religious, political and social 
opinions and prejudices as they appeared in 
court as jurors, witnesses or litigants than he 
did on knowing what the law was and being 
able to apply it. 

Alexander H. Ayres prided himself on be- 
ing a successful practitioner in the great state 
of New York. He came to Chetopa in Febru- 


ary, 1871, and became the senior memljer of 
the firm of Ayres & Fox. Judge Ayres was a 
cultured gentleman, of very extended reading 
and with a memory that enabled him to recall, 
whenever wanted, anything he had ever read. 
He was perfectly familiar with the reports of 
'his native state, and there was no question of 
law ever arose in his practice on which he 
could not cite a New York decision which, to 
his mind, was decisive. He was stricken down 
Avith a stroke of apoplexy while arguing a case 
in court. 

William Davis came to Parsons in the early 
spring of 1871 as the general attorney of the 
M. K. & T. Ry. Co. He was a Kentucky Re- 
publican and was possessed of many of the 
graces for which the Blue Grass gentlemen are 
noted. As a lawyer his chief defect was a lack 
of discrimination. After reading a case he had 
no more conception of what it decided than 
would have been gathered by any school boy 
who should give it a like reading. He always 
came into court fortified with a large number 
of authorities, but they were as like to be de- 
cisions in his adversary's favor as his own. It 
was his misfortune to be unable to see a point. 
But the people liked Col. Davis, partly because 
when a case was decided ap-ainst him he never 
knew that he was beaten, and for this reason, 
it may be presumed, they elected him county 
attorney, and then attorney general. 

G, C. West located in Parsons in 1871 and 
became associated with Col. Davis in business. 
He never extensively engaged in the practice of 
the law in this county. When Cul. Davis be- 
came attorney general Mv. West went with him 
to Topeka and did not return to this county. 

R. M. Donelly came from Kentucky and 
was admitted to the bar of this county in June, 
1871. His home was in Parsons, He was too 
much of a southern gentleman to be a very 

good practitioner in t'he west. He had but 
moderate success here and after a time went to 

E. C. Ward came from Chicago to Par- 
sons in April, 1871. For several years he had 
a good deal of prominence and quite a practice, 
and secured for himself the nomination and 
election as county attorney. But he lost all 
standing when he was convicted of hiring a 
witness to tell the truth in a suit in which he 
was employed ; for this he was disbarred. ^Vhile 
he was thereafter readmitted to the bar, it gave 
him no standing. His admiration of himself 
was without limit, 

Thomas C. Cor}' was t'he first county at- 
torney in Neosho county. He removed from 
there to Parsons in 1S71 and became an active 
and successful practitioner at our bar. The 
firms of Cory & Kimball and later Cory & 
Simons each had a fine business and managed 
it successfully. Mr. Cory was elected county 
attorney and died while filling that ofiice. 

Walter L. Simons came from Neosho coun- 
ty to Parsons in 1879 and entered into partner- 
ship with Mr. Cory, Whether with a partner 
or alone Mr. Simons always had a good busi- 
ness, and was prominent both as a lawyer and 
politician. He stood among the first at our bar 
and commanded the confidence and respect of 
all who knew him. From here he went to 
Fort Scott where 'he is now serving his second 
term as district judge. 

W. P, Atkinson came to Chetopa in the lat- 
ter part of 1 87 1 and early in 1872 was admit- 
ted to our bar. He Ijecame a partner of Mr. 
Crichton. He hail a good deal of physical 
strength and endurance but a very limited edu- 
cation and scarcely any knowledge of the law. 
In a year or two he returned to his former fields 
of labor. 

Charles H, Kimball had been admitted to 



the bar in the state of New York before coming 
west. He settled in Parsons the latter part of 
1872 and a few months thereafter became a 
partner of Mr. Cory. Later the firm of Kim- 
ball & Ayres was formed ; and in 1879 the firm 
of Kimball & Osgood was started and still con- 
tinues. Mr. Kimball came to Parsons without 
means and has acquired quite a large amount 
of property. He has always been recognized as 
a fine trial lawyer and able attorney, and his 
services have been in demand in many import- 
ant cases. He has served two terms in the 
State Senate. 

L. C. True was one of the early settlers 
of the county but was not admitted to the bar 
until 1872. He was one of the promoters of the 
town of Jacksonville, and after losing confi- 
dence in the future greatness of that place he 
removed to Chetopa. On being elected county 
attorney he moved to Oswego. At present he 
is in City, Kansas. Col. True was a 
man of a large amount of native ability and 
made of himself a fairly good lawyer. He 
was a forcible speaker and had good success in 
jury trials. 

H. \V. Barnes had been prominent at t'he 
bar and in politics before leaving ^^'isconsin. 
He came to this county for the health of his 
family. He located in Oswego early in 1872 
and soon obtained a fair practice. He was 
freer tlian some in expressing his conxictions 
a])i)ut the defects in our laws and thereby 
awakened some antagonism. He was at one 
time an independent candidate for district 
judge. He abandoned the ])ractice before 
leaving here. He was a hig'h minded, able 
lawyer. For several years before his death he 
made his hunie in Ji)])lin, iMissouri. 

F. AI. Smith was a contestrait for legal 
business at Chetujia for several years. He was 
jjcrsistent in striving to secure the end sought. 

For several years past he has been located at 

S. J. Stewart was not a resident of this 
county for a great length of time. He prac- 
ticed some in justice court at Chetopa and was 
able to get into one or two difficulties with Che- 
topa people. 

N. M. Purviance came to Oswego in 1872. 
He had the most peculiar makeup of any mem- 
ber of the bar. At times it would seem as 
though he had no ability and no business; at 
other times he seemed to be one of the leading 
members of the bar. Whether his failure at 
the bar finally was owing to his peculiar re- 
ligious belief, and his adhesion to the teaching 
that spirits indulged in overturning tables and 
engaged in silly talk through the medium of 
silly girls, I do not know ; but both while he 
resided here and after he left us he had a check- 
ered career. 

W. P. Talbot became a resident of Parsons 
in 1873 and at times was quite active in the 
practice ; but for se\eral years past he has prac- 
tically retired from active practice. At one 
time he was a partner of Col. Davis. When 
Col. True was county attorney, ISh. Talbot did 
good service as his assistant. 

H. G. Webb again entered active practice 
after resigning from the bench in 1873. He 
has been a part of the time out of the county, 
but most of tlie time located first at Oswego 
and then at Parsons. Although somewhat ad- 
vanced in years he remains one of the leading 
lawyers of the county. 

Of a number of parties much might be said 
in many respects, but as members of the bar 
their history need not be extended. H. AI. 
Debolt was admitted to our bar in 1874, hav- ' 
ing theretofore been admitted in Missouri. 
\\'illiam A. Medaris read law with Col. True 
and was admitted to the bar here in 1874 and 


in a year or two thereafter removed from the 
county. I understaml he has since attained a 
good standing at the bar. John HambHn read 
law with Nelson Case and was admitted to 
the bar in 1875. He soon thereafter went to 
California. W. R. Moore was a valuable citi- 
zen of Montana for many years. He read law 
with Mr. ^Vaters and Col, Davis, and was ad- 
mitted to the bar in 1876. He afterwards 
moved to McCune. William Horsfall came 
from North Carolina, where he had been ad- 
mitted to the bar and was admitted to practice 
here in 1877. Soon after this he entered the 
Episcopal ministry. A. B. Hammer had prac- 
ticed law in Illinois. He was admitted to our 
bar hi 1873 but never entered upon active prac- 
tice here. J have heard he has been a practi- 
tioner in the territor)- of Oklahoma for several 
years. A. B. Hacker was admitted to the bar 
of the county in 1879 but he never had any 
practice. Thomas H. Bruner was admitted in 
1880 on certificate of admission from Indiana. 
He never had any business in our courts. Jo- 
seph A. Gates was admitted in 1873. He had 
some practice for several years but was better 
known as a justice of the peace than as a prac- 
ticing attorney. He was not without ability, 
but he did not seem to be able to make a 
lawyer. Samuel C. Elliott read law and was 
admitted to the bar in this county, but he at 
once went to Independence and engaged in 
practice; there he made a fine record until in- 
sanity compelled his confinement in the asylum. 
A. G. Drake lias been an h(jnored citizen of 
Chetopa for many years. He was admitted 
to our bar in 1876, but never engaged in ac- 
tive practice. He is an efficient office man. 
L. F. Fisher came to Chetopa in the spring 
of 1869, but did not remain long enoug-'h to- 
develop the ability he had nor to make any 
reputation as a lawyer. George W. Hendricks 

came from Illinois and settled at Labette and 
afterwards removed to Oswego. He has done 
some practice, but has given most of his at- 
tention to the duties of justice of the peace; 
he has served several terms in that position 
and has become an adept. Ira F. Adams, of 
Parsons, has not entered t'he general practice, 
but has done legal and clerical work in a loan 
office for a number of years. S. E. Ball, of 
Howard township, was admitted to the bar in 
1878, but never did any legal business in this 
county. Alvah Shick, of Mound Valley, was 
getting quite a nice local business when he 
died. C. A. Wilkin came here when a boy,, 
read law with Mr. Kelso, and ^-as admitted 
to the bar in 1875. Abandoning t'he active 
practice of the law, he has for many years, 
been engaged in the more lucrati\e business 
of abstracting and he is considered an authority 
on matters in that line. Ira C. Mitchell re- 
sided in Oswego but a few months, but was 
here long enough to convince the profession 
that his abilities were sufficient, were he to use 
them, to make him an ornament tri the bar. 
But he was so addicted to drink that no (jne 
was sure that he would be in condition to at- 
tend to business when needed, and all confi- 
dence in his professional success soon vanished. 
He was admitted to our bar in 1876, and was 
for some time a partner of Col. Davis. 

J. E. Brvan liad a varied experience in 
Kansas. He preached at Chetopa before the 
Civil war, was pastor of the Methodist church 
in Oswego in 1871, afterwards read law and 
was admitted to the bar in Allen county, was 
a county officer there, returned to Labette 
county and was admitted to the bar in 1878, 
settling first at Cheto])a and afterwards at Os- 
wego, and went from here to Arkansas in 
i88v While here, in addition to practicing 
law he edited the Oswego Independent. 'Sir. 



Bryan was a man of a great deal of ability and 
succeeded fairly well in whatever he under- 
took; had he confined his energfies to a nar- 
rower field he would have attained a higher 
standing in either calling chosen. 

Jesse Brockway read law with Mr. Bettis 
and was admitted to our bar in 1875. His 
home was in Oswego from the time he came 
here in 1874 till he left the county in 1889. 
There have been very few members of this bar 
who had better natural abilities or whose pros- 
pect of success in the profession was better 
than that of Mr. Brockway when he started in 
business. Naturally he was a lawyer. But 
drink and other bad habits undermined his 
character and blighted a career which might 
have been brilliant. 

A. A. Osgood settled in Parsons and was 
admitted to the bar in 1877. Since 1879 he 
has been a member of the firm of Kimball & 
Osgood, and has been, to a large extent, the 
office member of the firm. He has had fine 
success as a collector and is well adapted to 
looking after the details of legal work. Mr. 
Osgood has always maintained a good stand- 
ing at the bar and has the confidence of a 
large circle of acquaintances. On Mr. Cory's 
death, Mr. Osgood was appointed to fill out 
his term as county attorney. 

J. W. Marley was admitted to our bar in 
1878, but he never entered on the active prac- 
tice of law. Upon settling in Oswego he com- 
menced loaning money and soon thereafter, in 
connection with others, opened a bank, since 
which time he has been in the banking busi- 

George S. King was a fine type of the old- 
fashioned southern gentleman. He was orig- 
inally from Maryland and never lost the char- 
acteristics which he inherited or acquired in 
his early years. He came to this county in 

1877, but did not become a member of our bar 
until 1879. ^t first 'he lived on a farm a few 
miles from Chetopa, but when he determined 
to practice his profession he moved to Oswego. 
.He was an editor as well as a lawyer and, 
perhaps, he was even better suited to writing 
than to practicing law. He enjoyed the re- 
spect and confidence of all who knew him. He 
served one term as county attorney and a part 
of a term as count)^ auditor. 

George F. King was a son of George S. 
King. He was much more brilliant than liis 
father, but lacked the latter's fine moral sensi- 
bilities and recognition of the requirements 
of a successful practitioner. He was admitted 
to the bar a few years after the family came 
to this county. He contracted the habit of 
drink and this, together with the use of mor- 
phine, soon ended a career that his friends had 
fondl}^ hoped and expected would be useful and 

\V. F. Schoch taught school several years 
before his admission to the bar. He started 
in the practice at Mound Valley but soon set- 
tled in Oswego, where he built up an excellent 
practice. He was also an active politician and 
did a great deal of campaign work. A few- 
years ago he moved to Topeka and has got 
a good start in business in that city. 

F. H. Foster has lived in Parsons a num- 
ber of years and has done a good deal of prac- 
tice, although he has always been engaged in 
loaning money or attending to some other busi- 
ness in addition to the practice of law. He 
is now cashier of the State Bank. He is very 
careful as a lawyer and usually is found to 
be in the right in his judgment. 

J. \V. Iden was a successful school teacher 
before commencing the practice of law. Hav- 
ing resided in Parsons for so many years, the 
people know him and entrust to his care many 


matters requiring attention. As an active 
practitioner he has been for some time a mem- 
ber of the firm of Webb & Iden. 

A. R. Bell has lived in Chetopa during- the 
time he has been practicing law. He has been 
attentive to business, studious, obliging and 
has built up a nice practice. 

F. H. Atchinson read law with Nelson Case 
and lived in Oswego most of the time while 
engaged in the practice. He left Oswego and 
went to Galveston, Texas, where he spent a few 
weeks, but not finding the prospect for practice 
all he could desire be returned to Kansas and 
went into the mercantile business in Colum- 
bus. As a lawyer he was a fighter from the 
start; his plan was to contest every inch of 
ground from the time the first pleading was 
filed. On the death of J. R. Hill. Mr. Atchin- 
son was appointed to fill out his term as county 

Joseph R. Hill when a boy came with his 
father to this county and grew up on a farm 
between Oswego and Chetopa. He read law 
with Case & Glasse and after his admission 
to the bar went into partnership with F. H. 
Atchinson. He was soon elected county at- 
torney and died before the expiration of his 

M. E. Williams has lived near and in Os- 
wego from the time when lie was a small boy. 
He has been engaged in farming and stock rais- 
ing a good portion of the time since attaining 
manhood. He read law with Mr. Brockway 
and for some ten years past has been actively 
engaged in its practice. He is known as a 
careful practitioner and earnestly contends for 
every point he thinks can be raised in his cli- 
ent's interest. 

Stanton J. Mattox acquired a large part 
of his education on a farm in Fairview town- 
ship. Since his admission to the bar he has 

resided in Oswego and has vigorously prose- 
cuted or defended the suits that have been en- 
trusted to him. 

Arthur F. Cranston, of Parsons, is care- 
fully looking after business and is building up 
a nice practice. 

E. O. Ellis has resided in Parsons several 
years and every one has confidence in him. 
He ought to command an extensive business in 
the near future. 

T. J. Flannelly was connected with a law 
firm in Kansas City before entering on the 
practice in this county. He has been located 
at Chetopa for three or four years. On Jan- 
uary I, 1 90 1, he went in partnership with Nel- 
son Case, at Oswego, but the firm of Case & 
Flannelly was soon dissolved by the appoint- 
ment of the latter to the bench. 

F. F. Lamb has gained a good start for a 
large practice. He is vigilant in pushing mat- 
ters entrusted to his care. Having resided in 
Parsons from the time the town was started, 
he is acquainted with every one and as a con- 
sequence has an advantage over a new comer. 

George Campbell has had many years of 
experience more or less connected with legal 
matters, although he 'has been a member of the 
I bar but a few years. He formerly resided at 
Mound Valley, but for several years past has 
lived in Oswego. He has been a constant 
mixer in politics and has served a term in the 
State Senate. 

O. M. McPherson was admitted to the bar, 
settled in Oswego and commenced the prac- 
tice of the law after a successful experience as 
superintendent of city schools in Parsons. He 
soon obtained a government appointment and 
for a number of years 'has resided in Wash- 
ington, where he is said to be commanding a 
verv desirable position. 

A. H. Tyler spent many years in the prac- 



tice at Parsons. He was always actively en- 
gaged in politics and held many local official 
positions. Two or three years ago he left our 
county and settled in Wichita. 

I. D. Highleyman has been an active pol- 
itician and business man of Chetopa, and as 
a pastime he has occasionally indulged in the 
practice of the law. 

Henry L. AlcCune came to Oswego in 
1886, just after the completion of his law 
studies. He became a partner of J. H. Mor- 
rison. After practicing here a few years he 
removed to Kansas City. 

A. B. Switzer served a term as county at- 
torney, but no one was able to discover win- 
he was elected or what qualifications he pos- 
sessed to practice law. His home was in Par- 
sons and when his term as C(.)unty attorney ex- 
pired he left the county. 

T. C. Sears came to Parsons as the general 
attorney for the M. K. & T. Ry. Co.. and rep- 
resented the road for se\-eral }-ears. He never 
engaged in general practice in this county. He 
had good ability, but as a practitioner was no 
better than the average lawyer. 

John Thompson was a young attorney who 
came to Chetopa in r886 and died within a 
year thereafter. He was a promising young 
man, who might have made a good record had life been spared. 

.\rthur Crunf<H-th sjient a few minitlis in 
Chetnpa in 1887. Me was a partner nf A. ( i. 
Drake. In the short time he was here he made 
no lasting impression. 

J. J. AIcFeely graduated from the position 
of justice of the peace of the city of Parsons 
into a member of the bar of this county. His 
idea seemed to be that 'r.e was cut out for a 
public officer, and, 1 ba\e heard, was success- 

ful in securing an official position after going 
to Colorado, 

Leroy Xeale came to Chetopa in 1870. 
Perhaps he had the largest collection business 
of any one in the county. He had a very good 
Inisiness along several lines, including commer- 
cial and corporation law. He seldom appeared 
in court, but one could scarcely travel any- 
where on the cars without somewhere running 
across him loc^king after some feature of his 

A. D. Xeale, son of Leroy Xeale, grew up 
in Chetopa, was associated with his father in 
his life time, and took the business of the firm 
after his father's death. He was admitted to 
the bar in 1889, since which time he has com- 
manded a large share of the practice from 

John H. Morrison came to Oswego from 
Illinois and at once entered on a successful 
practice. It was his good fortune to be able 
to pass for his full worth. He was possessed 
of popular traits and made and held many 
friends. Sex'eral other members of the liar 
were lietter lawyers, but few of them would 
pass for such with the public. He served a 
term in the Legislature and a term as county 
attorney. He was not always bis own friend. 
His career ended while he was comparatively a 
young man. 

J. F. McDonald, of Parsons, was more 
notorious than ]jro found. Xo one could con- 
\-ince him that he was not a great lawyer, but 
his clients found he could get them in trouble 
more rapidly than he could get them out. Flis 
theme of discussion was his ability to down 
the corporations ; howe\-er, most of them still 

M. B\-rne stutlied law in iail and after be- 



ing released spent several years at the bar, 
'having quite a good line of business. Deem- 
ing the opportunities for the full use of his 
faculties here inadequate, he left the county 
and went to New York City. 

E. L. Burton studieil law in Cherokee 
county. On starting in business in Oswego he 
showeil a willingness to attend to the most 
trivial matters and by this means was not long- 
in working into a very fair business, and for 
several years past he has had a good line of 
practice. He has been active in politics and has 
before him a fine prospect of political prefer- 

E. C. Clark was admitted to the bar before 
entering on his duties as clerk of the district 
court. After completing his term as clerk he 
formed a partnership with E. L. Burton. He 
has found the experience he acquired in the 
clerk's office very useful to him in his practice. 
Burton & Clark is one of the substantial law 
firms of the county. 

T. N. Sedgwick is one of the old mem- 
bers of the Kansas bar, but he has not been in 
this county many years. He came from Em- 
poria to Parsons to take charge of the legal 
department of the M. K. & T. Ry. Co. As 
general attorney of that corporation he has 
made a fine record as a corporation lawyer. 
He insists on his company being law abiding 
and will scarcely ever allow it to settle a liti- 
gated claim until he is satisfied of its legality 
by the decision of a court of last resort. He 
will probably be retained in the service of the 
company as long as he remains in the prac- 

C. W. Butterworth was raised in this coun- 
ty, but was admitted to the bar and spent sev- 
eral years in practice away from here. Recent- 
ly he has returned to this county and intends 
doing some practice here. 

W. D. Atkinson has for years been attor- 
ney for the Parsons Commercial Bank, has 
ser\-e(l a term or more as city attorney of Par- 
sons, and has had a general practice. He is 
a careful and competent attorney and has been 
\-ery successful in handling his business. 

Soon after Fanny Cooper was admitted to 
the bar, she formed a partnership with W. 
D. Atkinson, which had other purposes than 
the practice of the law. No one looks for a 
dissolution of this firm till the death of one 
of the parties. 

Among the young lawyers who have been 
admitted to the bar somewhat recently are 
those whom I will now name. Some of them 
have already obtained a good start in the prac- 
tice, while others have most yet to gain. 

C. E. Kennedy has lived in Parsons from 
boyhood, has a large circle of acquaintances 
and may expect a remunerative practice. M. 
P. Gillin, D. N. Matthews, J. D. Peters. Will- 
ard Reynolds, A. H. Noyes. C. L. McGuire 
are Parsons lawyers who have a fair chance 
to make their way at the bar. W. A. Discli 
has been acquiring valuable information as 
deputy in the office of the sheriff and the dis- 
trict clerk. Walter Von Trebra. of Chetopa, 
has a promising future. Harry G. Davis 
studied law and was admitted to the bar after 
coming home from the Cuban war. He has 
located in Kansas City, Kansas. James R. 
Scott for some time assisted Mr. Sedgwick in 
railroad legal business. VV. J. Gillette has 
given more attention to politics and medicine 
than to law. Rollin P. Norton did no business 
at this bar after his admission, and the same may- 
be said of Ike D. Nearhart. Preston S. Davis 
has located at Vinita. H. H. Claiborne while 
editing the Tiiiics-Staicsnian was admitted to 
the bar, but with no expectation of entering 
the practice here. Henry C. Long read law 



with Case & Glasse and was admitted to tlie 
bar after completing his work as superintend- 
ent of the Osweg^o cit}' schools. He then moved 
to Leavenworth and commenced practice. 

Brady: Four of this family have become 
members of the bar within a few years. F. 
M. Brady has served two terms as county at- 
torney and is now engaged in general prac- 
tice. T. M. Brady has located at Parsons; 
E. H. Brady at Chetopa; and May R. Brady 
is in the ofifice with her brother Frank at Os- 
wego. Each is recognized as having good 
legal ability. 

E. B. ^klorgan had never done any practice 
till he came to Oswego. He has made a nice 
start in business since coming here and has 
ably filled the office of city attorney one term. 

Henry A. Lamb entered the army soon 
after his admission to the bar and died in 
the service. 

Jesse Richcreek did a little business in our 
court, but before gaining any standing he 
went west. George Bettis was elected city at- 
torney of Oswego, but left the county before 
completing his term. W. H. Edmundson read 
law with Nelson Case. He spent a year or 
two practicing in the Territory. He now re- 
sides in Oswego, but is not in the practice. W. 
S. Hyatt had never had any practice to speak 
of at the bar when he was elected county at- 
torney. He enters with zeal on the discharge 
of his official duties. Catherine Swope was 
one of the first teachers in the county high 
school ; while there she arranged for a life 
partnership with \\'. S. Hyatt, and the two 
pursued their leg-al studies together. Cath- 
erine Hyatt became her husband's assistant 
when he entered on the discharge of his duties 
as county attorney. 



On January ii, 1869, a call signed by 
about 20 prominent citizens of Chetopa and 
Oswego was furnished for publication in the 
Advance and Register, for a meeting to be 
held on January 21st, for the purpose of or- 
ganizing a Bible society. At that time quite 
a large number of the citizens of the county 
met at the office of Dr. W. S. Newlon, in Os- 
wego, and adopted a constitution, and elected 
the following permanent officers of the society : 
Rev. T. H. Canfield, president; J. L. Taft. 
vice-president; VV. M. Johnson, secretary; Dr. 
C. M. Gilky. treasurer; and also a board of five 
directors. Adjourned to meet in Chetopa, on 
February 7th following. 

At this time a meeting was held in Spauld- 
ing's Hall, at 3 o'clock p. m., at which a large 
congregation gathered. Addresses were made 
by Rev. T. H. Canfield, Rev. C. R. Rice, and 
others. A subscription of something over $40 
for the benefit of the society was taken up. 
This was the commencement of an organiza- 
tion which was kept up for a number of years, 
holding its meetings somewhat frecjuently. and 
doing very much toward furnishing the new 
communities with Bibles. After a few years, 
when the growth of several of the towns of 
the county had been such that each felt the 
need of separate organizations, the county so- 
ciety was discontinued, and city organizations 
were formed. 

Y. M. C. A. 


The following account of the organization 
of the Oswego Young Alen's Christian Asso- 
ciation is taken from an address by Ered C. 
Wheeler, delivered at the second anniversary 
of the organization of the association : 

"On Satunla}- evening. December 8, 1883. 
in response to in\-itatiLins that morning re- 
ceived through the jxtstoffice from him, there 
were gathered at the home of Nelson Case, in 
Oswego, Rev. John Elliott, Rev. H. McBir- 
ney, Fred Lee, Chas. Carpenter, J\I. Chidester, 
M. E. Diehl, Thos. O'Halloran, W. F. Thorne. 
and F. C. Wheeler. Mr. Case made a state- 
ment showing the need of such an organiza- 
tion especiall}- adapted to reach young men. 
and proposed the organization of a Young 
Men's Christian Association. All present con- 
curred in the views expressed, and a commit- 
tee was appointed to consider and report at 
same place on December 12, to which time we 

"On December 12 Harry and \\"\\\ Mitchell, 
Will Skilling, Chas. Carpenter, Rev. H. Mc- 
Birney, Thos. O'Halloran, Mr. Case, and F. 
C. Wheeler met as per adjournment. A draft 
of a constitution was presented, and the mat- 
ter of organization was definitely decided on. 
It was voted to adjourn to meet at the M. 
E. church, on Tuesday evening. January i, 
1884, to complete the organization. On tiie 



evening of that date some six or eight met at 
the appointed place, adopted the uniform con- 
stitution pro\-ided by the national association, 
and organized by electing Nelson Case, pres- 
ident : F. C. Wheeler, vice-president : Chas. 
Carpenter, secretary, and Harry Mitchell, 
treasurer. The necessary committees were also 

During its earlier years tlie association did 
more aggressive work, perhaj^s. than it per- 
formed at a later period. A Bible-training 
class was maintained for two or tliree years, 
and did very efficient work. The young men 
for some time had a literarv organ'zation con- 
nected with the association. A boys' branch 
was (irganized at the opening of the second 
year of the work, and in that alone enough 
work was done to iustify the organization 
of the association. Some years ago an outfit 
was purchased for a gymnasium, and a room 
was kept open during the subsecfuent life of the 
association. A salaried general secretary was 
employed a few months at one time, but with 
that exception the work was done entirely by 
the home members. For a number of years 
the association was somewhat intimately con- 
nected with the Library Association. Since 
its organization it had the following presidents 
land secretaries: 1884-85 — president. Nelson 
Case: secretary, Charles T. Carpenter. 1886 — 
Charles T. Carpenter, president; Howard Mer- 
riam. secretary. 1887 — Howard Merriam and 
\V. F. Thorne, presidents: F. G. Mitchell, sec- 
retary; 1888-89 — Nelson Case, president: W, 
G. Mitchell and W. A. Bibbitt. secretaries. 
1890— A. B. Kegg, president: Ed. M. Bald- 
win, secretary. 1891 — W. W. Flora, president; 
FI. H. Beard, secretary. 1892 — W. W. Flora, 
president : Fred W. Beymer and W. B. Covalt, 
secretaries. 1893-94 — Dr. K. P. Ashley, 

Those who had been principally interested 
in the work, and (mi whom the resixjnsibility 
of carrying it on largely rested, found it more 
of a burden than they thought should be borne 
for the results that the association was at the 
time accomplishing. Some of the work, wdiich 
it had originally done, could now be performed 
through the young people's societies of the 
various churches. It was decided to dissolve 
the association earlv in 1895. 


The Parsons Y. M. C. A. was organized 
December 5. 1885, with C. F. Hodgman, pres- 
ident; Cyrus G. Emerson, vice-president; W. 
H. Martin and Thomas Clark, secretaries ; and 
F. H. Foster, treasurer. The following year 
it was incorporated, and the following officers 
elected : M. E. Crowell. president : E. C. Read, 
vice-president: A. H. Whitmarsh, secretary: 
and F. H. Foster, treasurer. A ladies" auxil- 
iary was organized earlv in the history of the 
association, and rendered valuable aid in fur- 
nishing rooms and giving entertainments. The 
most of the time during its life, the association 
maintained a paid general secretary. The fol- 
lowing persons served in that capacity; Chas. 
L. Helmick was the first, and served from Au- 
gust. 1887. to February, 1889: James R. Smith 
succeeded him, and served to July. 1889: T. 
R. Breese, B. C. McOuestion. J. VV. Shingley, 
W. Russell aufl Hopper since then suc- 
cessively held tlie office. A reading-room, 
bath-rooms, as well as reception and parlor- 
rooms, were provided, and much good work 
was accomplished. 

Perhaps about the same account might be 
gi\'en of the efforts at maintaining an associa- 
tion in Parsons, as has already been given of 
the Oswego association. On account of the 



large number of railroad men in Parsons, the 
needs of an association at that point were 
more apparent than at any other place in the 
county. But the expense <if maintaining it 
was greater than the receipts would cover, and 
a debt was the result. The dissolution of the 
association followed almost as a matter of 
course. Charles Husband was the general sec- 
retary for some time before the association 


During the month of August, 1886, steps 
were taken looking toward the formation of 
an association at Chetopa, and on September 
20, 1886. a number of the members of the Os- 
wego and Parsons associations visited Chetopa 
and assisted in the formation of this organiza- 
tion. .A.t that time the following officers were 
elected : President, W. A. Shanklin ; vice- 
president, W. H. Pinkerton ; secretary, George 
Campbell ; treasurer, T. O. Breckenridge. For 
a few months in 1889 John G. Lear was em- 
ployed as general secretary for this and the 
Oswego association, giving- about half of his 
time to each. This is the only time that a 
salaried officer was employed. W. S. Henry 
was president the second year of the organiza- 
tion and F. M. Smith the third year; J. P. 
Slaughter was the second secretary, and was 
succeeded by H. F. Stewart. The association 
a part of the time kept open a reading-room 
and conducted various lines of meetings. The 
association at this place ceased work even 
earlier than did those at Oswcp'o and Parsons. 

Y. W. C. A. 

On January 2, 1886, at the Methodist 
church in Oswego, an organization of this asso- 
ciation was effected. It kept up its work about 

five years, and then for some time its members 
continued in an unofficial way to keep up the 
work. The association has ne\er lieen reor- 
ganized. A training-class and a Bible class 
were conducted by it for several }'ears ; also 
a girls' Bible class. The association had the 
following presidents : Mrs. Allenette Cook, 
Mrs. Mary E. Case, Miss Sarah Crane, Miss 
Blanche Case and Miss Eunice Crane. 


In giving an account of the work of the 
Sunday-schools of the county I separate it from 
the account of other church work, not because 
I consider them a separate institution from the 
church, properly speaking, but because, espe- 
cially in the early work in the county, there 
were manv union schools, connected with no 
church in particular, and also because the 
Sunday-school work is one of the most im- 
portant andi best developed departments of 
church work, and is entitled to special men- 
tion as such. 

T will first give an account of the schools 
which have been at least a part of the time 
classed as union ( although some of them might 
properly be spoken of as denominational), and 
will then mention the denominational schools, 
connecting those of each denomination wher- 
ever situated in the county, instead of classify- 
ing by localities. No one can realize more 
than I do the imperfect history which I here 
present of these schools, but all the information 
is given which I have been able to gather. It 
is regretted that ])arties who might have fur- 
nished more definite information have failed to 
do so. One reason why this information is 
not accessible and has not been furnished, is 
that in many instances no record whatever has 
been kept of the school w^ork, and in many 


other cases records that were kept at the time 
have l:)een misplaced or lost. Some of this 
information has been furnished me from peo- 
ple's memory, and of course contains more or 
less errors, but in the main, so far as it goes. 
I think it is as reliable as could be expected. 
All the data that is given respecting union 
schools has reference to their work prior 
to 1893, for no facts have been furnished re- 
garding what they have done since that date. 
From what is here set forth in succeeding 
pages, some one may be able to construct a 
more perfect account of this important de- 
partment of work. 



The first Sunday-school in the county was 
organized by the early settlers at Chetopa. be- 
fore the war. In a letter referring to these 
early times Dr. Lisle says: "Mr. Bryan or- 
ganized a Sunday-school sometime in 1858, 
which was kept up most of the time until the 
Rebellion." The Mr. Bryan here referred to 
is Rev. J. E. Bryan, then a minister of the M. 
E. church South, in charge of the work of 
the circuit including Chetopa, and in 1871 
pastor of the M. E. church of Oswego, and 
still more recently a practicing attorney in this 
county. This Sundaj-school was held in the 
school-house, an account of the building of 
which is given in a preceding chapter devoted 
to educational work in the county. 1 

After Chetopa began to resettle at the close 
of the war. the first Sunday-school to be or- 
ganized was in the summer of 1867, in a small 
frame building standing on the southeast corner 
of First and Maple streets, sometimes called 
the "Cabinet Shop," but more generally desig- 

nated "Bachelors' Hall." G. H. Hard was the 
superintendent of this school. Later, arrange- 
ments were made for holding the school in the 
Ephraim Doudna store building. The school 
was closed during the winter, and opened in the 
spring of 1868. James H. Crichton, Sr., fa- 
ther of the attorney who has lived there so 
long, spent a part of the summers of 1867 and 

1868 at Chetopa, and assisted in superintend- 
ing the school. The first Sunday in Septem- 
ber, 1868, the school having previously been 
very poorly classified and organized, a reor- 
ganization was had, and Edward Johnson was 
elected superintendent; F. H. Mendenhall, as- 
sistant; and D. J. Doolen, secretary. Early in 

1869 J. M. Cavaness was elected superintend- 
ent, and continued to serve until the organi- 
zation of the denominational schools, in 1870. 

The first Sunday-school in Parsons was or- 
ganized in April, 1871, by the joint efiforts 
of Rev. G. W. Pye and Rev. H. H. Cambern. 
It was started and for some time maintained 
as a union school. It had a hard time to main- 
tain an existence. With no permanent place of 
meeting, driven from vacant stoi-e buildings, 
offices and shops, as they were needed for other 
pur))oses, it finally found a somewhat perma- 
nent and comfortable home in Gary's Hall. T. 
C. Cory was its first superintendent. After a 
few months of service he resigned, and J. E. 
Wilkes succeeded him. In January, 1872, E. 
B. Stevens was elected superintendent: M. G. 
Brown was elected in 1873, and M. \\allace in 
1874. During a part of this time some schools 
which had started as denominational schools 
were merged with the union. On the organiza- 
tion of the denominational schools this school 



The Sunday-school work in Oswego dates 
from the early spring of 1867, when a Sunday- 
school was organized in the log cabin owned 
and then occupied by Dr. J. F. Newlon. It 
stood at the northeast corner of block 26, just 
south of where he afterwards made his home. 
William Herbaugh was elected superintendent. 
It was kept open only during the summer, 
and was reorganized the following spring. It 
met in such vacant houses as could be secured, 
holding scarcely more than two or three Sun- 
days consecutively in any one place. In the 
fall of 1868, when the building was erected 
which was afterwards donated to the county 
for a courthouse, the Sunday-school found 
therein a somewhat permanent home. From 
this school the denominational schools were es- 
tablished as follows: The Methodist in 1868, 
the Congregational and Presbyterian in 1870. 
and the Baptist in 1871. 


' Concord District, No. 16. — The school- 
house in this district is now in North town- 
ship, but when lirst built was in Neosho. In 
the summer of 186-^ Mrs. Owens organized a 
Sunday-school in their house on the northeast 
quarter of section 5, which was maintained 
during that summer, and when the school-house 
was built a reorganization was had, locating it 
in that building, where it was continued for a 
number of years. 

NexvHope District, No. i-,. — In 1869 there 
was a log cabin about half a mile north of 
where Matthewson now stands, known as the 
Sweet school-house. ■ Rev. R . P. Bukey 
preached there frequently. In that house was 
started the first Sunday-school in that part of 
the county. W'm. McDown was its superin- 

tendent. It was not long until the new school- 
house was built. A Sunday-school was con- 
ducted in this district during the summer 
months for a number of years, commencing 
with 1869. It was generally conducted as a 
Methodist Episcopal school. W. D. Bevans 
superintended most of the time. W. T. Carter 
land Rev. J. A. Harvey were also among those 
in charge of the work. 

Hopkins District, No. 62. — From 1875 ^ 
1882 a prosperous Sunday-school was con- 
ducted in this district. \\'. D. Bevans was one 
of its principal workers, and a part of the time 
its superintendent. 

Lone Elm District, N0.21. — Sunday-school 
has been started here occasionally, but has 
not been regularly maintained. 

Hard Scrabble District, No. 46. — The ef- 
fort to maintain a Sunday school in this dis- 
trict was not so persistent as to meet with good 


Toii'nship Association. — In 1876 an asso- 
ciation was formed in this township, but was 
not effective the following year, and the vari- 
ous schools in the tmvnship met and reorgan- 
ized a township as.sociation on April 7, 1878, 
electing J. M. C. Reed president and S. L. 
Obenchain secretary. Since then the associa- 
tion has held annual meetings, sometimes more 

Woods District, No. iS. — Organized in 
1878. Superintendents: S. Stephenson, N. 
T. Chambers, T, J. \"an Horn and F. A. Ed- 

Spring Hill District, No. 22. — Organized 
in 1874. Superintendents: Samuel Cherry, 
J. W. Scott, Messrs. Milligan, Wilson, Cham- 
bers and Millard. 

Hcacock District, No. ^2. — Organized in 



1875. Mrs. Anna Heacock was superintendent 
for several years: afterward 1. P. Merrill. 

Franklin District, No. 55. — Organized 
May. 1870, and maintained during the sum- 
mer months every year since. Superintend- 
ents : G. \V. Goodman, J. Harlan, E. H. 

Taylor, Brandon, H. Mcintosh, E. H. 

Wells, S. L. Obenchain, T. J. Van Horn, and 
Robert Toles. 

Prairie Valley District. No. ?/. — Organ- 
ized in May, 1871, and maintained since. Su- 
perintendents : Philip La Cornu, William 
Burdit, J. G. Duval. J. M. C. Reed. R. Brown. 
E. C. Barker. W. B. Truax. and J. X. Hard- 
man. For two or three years two schools were 
maintained at this place — one a union and one 
a Methodist South ; one met in the forenoon 
and one in the afternoon. 


Salem District, No. 42. — School was or- 
ganized in this district in 1871. and has been 
kept open every summer since. Alex. Abies 
was its first superintendent. James Venable, 
Amos Welch and Charles Birt ha\e been effect- 
ive workers and frequently have superin- 

Bradford District, No. jp. — A school 
was organized in this district in the house of 
Merit Mason, in 1870. and has since been 
maintained nearly every year during the sum- 
mer months. Among its superintendents have 
been J. C. Bradford, Frank J. Smith, and T. 
J. Rich. 


Mount Zion District, No. j(5. — In the fall 
of 1867 the neighbors got together and built 
a log house on the northwest quarter of sec- 
tion 5. in township 32, of range 18, in which 

to hold religious services and other meetings 
of a public character. A Sunday-school was 
organized in this house in the spring of 1868. 
This was the first Sunday-school in the town- 
ship. Harry Beggs was superintendent. The 
school has been maintained ever since. In the 
spring of 1871 it was reorganized as a Meth- 
odist Episcopal school, which relationship has 
continued, that district being one of the points 
where that denomination has regularly held 
services. Rev. E. M. Bussart. William Johns, 
C. L. Darling, S. C. Hocket. Phelix Oliphant 
and Perry Nixon are some of those who have 
been prominent workers in this school. 

Four-Mile District. No. j5.— The first 
school-house in this district was a little log 
building which stood in the middle of the road 
at the northwest corner of section 22. From 
this it was known as "the little log school- 
house in the lane." In this a Sunday-school 
was organized in 1870 with J. M. Armstrong, 
superintendent. It was reorganized in the 
spring of 1871. with Jacob Masters, superin- 
tendent. The school was maintained till 1883. 

Harmony Grove District. No. ?o. — A Sun- 
day-school was organized in this district in the 
spring of 1870. with Mr. Pierce, superintend- 
ent, which has continued until the present — a 
part of the time running all the year, and a 
part of the time closing in the winter. It was 
first held in Mr. Gibson's dwelling-house on 
the northwest quarter of section 30. William 
Dick. F. H. Dienst and D. D. Lindsey were 
early and efficient workers here. 

Timber Hill District. No. ?;.— This Sun- 
day-school was organized in a log school-house 
on the southeast corner of the Timber Hill 
town-site, in the spring of 1870. with Mr. 
Baker, superintendent. Some years ago it was 
organized as a German Methodist school, and 
as such still maintains its existence and does 



good work. The Hookey, Breshler and 
Schrader families iia\-e l^een efficient workei's, 

Maple Grove Distriet. Xo. 102. — This 
Sunday-school was organized on February 5, 
1882, with J. T. McKee, superintendent, and 
George W. Hierronymus, assistant. It has 
not had a continuous existence — some years 
kept up, and at other times has remained dor- 

Baptist Union Sun(Ia}'-schoul was organ- 
ized in the Baptist church on section 23, in 
1877. and was maintained there as a union 
school until the church was removed to Dennis. 

Sylvan Dale District, No. 79. — A School 
was organized in this district in 1872, with 
George Anderson, superintendent. The next 
spring it was reorganized, with J. D. ^Ic- 
Keever superintendent, which position he held 
for a number of years. S. M. Bailey was an 
active worker in this school while he lix'ed in 
the neighborhood. The school mo\-ed io Den- 
nis in 1883. 

Pleasant Hill District, No. jy. — A Sunday- 
school was organized in the 'new school-house 
in this district in the spring of 1873, which was 
maintained in the ]ilace till the completion of 

Bethel Chapel, on the southeast quarter of 
section 30, in township 31, range 19 (Walton 
township), in 1889, when it was removed to 
that place. It has always been recognized as 
a Methodist school. George W. Blake, James 
Woodyard and a Mr. Brown were early super- 

Muddy Corner District. No. j6. — .\ little 
box school-house stood on the southwest cor- 
ner of section 24, township 31, range 17, in 
which a Sunday-school was organized in 1872. 
A new school-house was thereafter built on the 
southeast quarter of section 35, and named 

St. John's, in which a Sunday-school has 


h the 

been maintained ever since. Israel Foster, J. 
B. Swart and Adam Funk were earnest work- 
ers in this school. 

Tie\n Mound District. No. p,\ — J. R. 
Douglas, John Carson and others were leading 
workers in a Sunday-school organized in this 
district in 1873. It did well for several years, 
but after that was maintained only at irregular 

Osage Township Sunday-School A.^socia- 
tion. — This association has been mail 
the longest and has been conducted w 
most enthusiasm of any of the various 
ship associations in the county. During 1871 
a picnic was held on section 7, in township ;^2. 
range 18. In 1872 an organization was form- 
ed and a picnic held on the old campground 
on the Leroy Dick farm, in section 29. township 
31, range 18. \\'hen the county association 
commenced to organize township associations 
for the purpose of holding conventions to dis- 
cuss Sunday-school topics, this was one of the 
first townships to respond. Contrar\- to the 
wish of the county officers, however, the local 
workers insisted on keeping the picnic idea in 
the foreground, and it has ever maintained the 
ascendency which it early acquired. In 1878 
the ground near the northeast corner of section 
20, on William Dick's farm, was secured as 
permanent picnic grounds, and there every 
summer large crowds, fre<iuentlv reaching into 
thousands, congregate and spend a day in the 
woods. This gathering has proved to be a fa- 
vorite resort for local ])oliticians, giving them, 
as it doeSj a tine opportunity to meet many 
whose support they think it expedient to secure. 
The picnic is held regularly on the last \\'ednes- 
day in July, and the association holds its meet- 
ing for the discussion of Sunday-school inter- 
ests at Harmony Grove school-house each 


spring, on the call of the president. The asso- 
ciation is chartered, and has its gfrounds nicely 
improved. Some i8 schools, a part of which 
are situated in Montgomery and Neosho coun- 
ties, are connected with this association. 


Bell Mound District, No. pp. — A Sunday- 
school was organized here in 1879, with M. F. 
Wakefield superintendent. It has ever since 
maintained its existence. 

, Mound J "alley District, No. 40. — A Sun- 
day-school was organized at this place in the 
summer of 1870, with Joseph Wilmoth as its 
first superintendent. It was kept up during 
the summer of each year, and sometimes dur- 
ing the winter, until the organization of the 
denominational schools, ahout 1880. J. H. 
Tibbits, H. W. Savage, the Coleman families 
and others were active workers in the school. 

McCormick District, No. 19. — A Sunday- 
school was organized in this district in the 
spring of 1870, with John Claspill. superin- 
tendent, and has been kept up with a good 
degree of regularity since then. 

Mount Triumph District, No. 6^. — A Sun- 
day-school was organized in this district in 
1883, with Mr. Robinson, superintendent. 
Sometimes run as a union, sometimes as a 
Methodist Episcopal, sometimes as a United 
Brethren, but several years ago was reorganized 
as a Protestant Methodist school. 


Cald'cwll District, A^o. 82. — Organized in 
1882. Among its superintendents have been 
David Caldwell J. B. Cosatt, J. Covalt, J. J. 
Decker, and Mrs. Mcintosh. 

Hiatt District, No. 4/. — Organized in the 
spring of 1874. Suoerintendents : R. Birt, 
Mr. Baker, and Wm. Campbell. 


Pleasant I'allcy District, No. 48. — Organ- 
ized in 1871. Superintendents: Tobe H. Tay- 
lor, James Morning, A. Gager, Frank Craw- 
ford, Lon Kiter, John Smith, Anna Arnold and 
David Beyle. 

Labette District, No. 10. — Organized Jan. 
uary 15, 1871. Superintendents: R. Baker, 
G. K. Sipple and C. Fentress. 

Liberty District, No. i/. — Organized in 
1870. Superintendents: Mr. Mcintosh, G. 
K. Sipple. Silas Fentress, G. L. Whitnah, G. 
W. Giton, E. L. Pugh, J. C. Christian and 
R. H. Thresher. 


Montana District, N'o. /J. — The first school 
in Montana township was in Montana district, 
No. 13. The first school organized in this dis- 
trict was in 1868; H. M. Minor was its super- 
intendent. It was reorganized in the spring 
of 1869. with Charles Gray, superintendent. 
Its sessions were held in an old store building 
a part of the time, and when they had preach- 
ing the Sunday-school services were held in 
the same building where the preaching took 
place. The location was changed from time 
to time, according to their opportunity to secure 
room. Mr. Gray remained superintendent for 
a number of years. A. Gager was one of the 
early workers in the school. Since Mr. Gray's 
time, among the superintendents the following 
have served the school: Thomas Clark, Rev. 
S. W. Grififin, W. F. Schoch, B. Lanham, D. 
Beyle. O. E. Woods and Wm. Woods. 

Shiloh District. No. 8. — Organized 1870. 
Superintendents : Geo. Fagan, Andy Livesay, 
Nathaniel Woods, Lewis W. Grain, W. J. 
Webb, J. R. Youmans, Thos. Clinton, Z. Atch- 
inson, S. D. Holmes and Mrs. Elnor E. Pierce. 




Oak Grove District, No. 24. — This school 
was organized in the log- church in the spring 
of 1871, with Wm. Herbaugh, superintendent. 
The following year Mr. Bagby acted as super- 
intendent. In 1876 it was organized in the 
new stone school-house, with A. Brown, super- 
intendent. Since then the superintendents 
have been P. S. Hughart, J. W. Brown, J. M. 
Ricker, and J. W. Park. 

Sticc District, No. 2. — A Sunday-school 
was organized in this district in 1877 ; Andrew 
Kaho, superintendent. It has had but an ir- 
regular existence. 

Clover District, No. 2J. — A Sunday-school 
has been kept in this district at intervals for 
quite a number of years, but it has not been 
continuous enough to be of great force. 

Campbell District, No. §/. — A Sunday- 
school was held in this school-house during the 
summer months during a part of the "seven- 
ties," but in later years no attempt has been 
made to keep it up. 

Woadruff District, No. loi. — Soon after 
the building of the school-house in this dis- 
trict a Sunday-school was organized, with S. 
N. Woodruff, superintendent, but it was main- 
tained only a year or two. 


Stover District, No. 2g. — In the summer 
of 1870 a Sunday-school was organized in a 
small house on the southeast quarter of section 
17. but removed to the school-house as soon as 
it was built, and with more or less regularity, 
has been maintained nearly ever since. It has 
generally been known as a union school, al- 
though the Methodists, as a rule, have fur- 
nished the larger part of the force that has 
done the work. Among its superintendents 

have been I. W. Patrick. George Pfaff, John 
and Jerry Winbigler. The Seventh Day Ad- 
ventists have also maintained a school at this 
point a part of the time. 

Nezvell District, No. 7/.— The first Sunday- 
school in this vicinity was organized in the 
Mcintosh house, in the spring of 1870. A 
lady rode on horseback to Chetopa and secured 
Bibles and song-books for the school. Dur- 
ing its stay in this place it had no regular super- 
intendent, but different members were ap- 
pointed from Sunday to Sunday to take charge. 
The school was taken to the school-house as 
soon as it was completed, where it has been 
maintained for the most of the time since. It 
has had for superintendents among others the 
following: A. B. Hammer, Josiah Rayburn, 
G. D. Fellows, Mr. Young, James Paxton and 
J. M. Magee. 

Bowiiiaii District, No. 12. — Organized in 
1872, and maintained only a part of the time 

Maple Grove District, No. j-f. — This school 
has had an existence more or less of the time 
since 1873, ^"fl '""as had among its superintend- 
ents Joseph Scott, Sallie Bottenfield, J. L. 
Williams, and John Richardson. 


Pioneer District, N^o. 39. — The Sunday- 
school in this district was organized in May, 
1 87 1, with B. F. Jones, superintendent. 
Among other superintendents were S. M. Can- 
aday, Joseph Vance and George Geer. 

Rayburn District, No. 52. — The Sunday- 
school in this district was first organized in 
May, 1 87 1, in the claim cabin of D. S. Morrison, 
on the southeast quarter of section 14, and was 
moved to the school-house when it was built. 
It was maintained for several years. Among 



its early superintendents were Jacob Hager- 
man, Henry Story and George Hildreth. 

Noble District, No. Sp. — This Sunday- 
school was organized in April, 1874. Josiah 
Rayburn, Michael Noel. George Hildreth and 
Henry Sleath successively superintended it. 

Bell District. No. 91. — A Sunday-school 
was organized in this school-house in the spring 
of 1875. B. Johnson, J. Bell, Sr., and J. Will- 
iams were early superintendents. 

Janes District, No. 95. — This school was 
organized in April, 1879. Homer Hulse, 
Milo Hildreth and James Curnutt superin- 
tended it. 

Altaiiioiit District, Xo. 4;. — A Sunday- 
school was organized in a store building in 
Elston in 1870, with Martin Gore as superin- 
tendent. At the same time a school was con- 
ducted in Major Hokes' house, on the south- 
east quarter of section 36, Labette township, 
with Thomas D. Bickerman as superintendent. 
The workers connected with these schools went 
to make up the union school which was organ- 
ized at Altamont in 1871. It was maintained 
until the organization of the various denomi- 
national schools, when the union sciiools ceased. 
Among those who sujierintended the school were 
A. B. Hammer, James Perry, William Thomp- 
son, I. X. Hamilton, Perry Daniels, S. J. 
Hershbarger and Daniel Ferrier. 


Richland District. No. 04. — In 1874 a Sun- 
day-school was organized in a log house on 
Ola Olson's claim, by J. H. Tibbits, and he was 
elected superintendent. The cabin being very 
small and uncnmi. vrtable, an arbnr (if ])nles and 
brush was made, in which the school was held 
during the summer. A schddl-iiouse was built 
the next winter, and in the spring the Sunday- 

school was reorganized in it. with J. H. Tib- 
bits, superintendent. 

Emmons District, No. 84. — This Sunday- 
school was organized in May, 1871, at the 
house of James Sweet, where it was kept till 
the spring of 1873, when it was organized at 
the school-house, where it has been held ever 
since. Buel Crone was tlie first superintend- 
ent, and B. H. Sharp also filled that position 
in later years. James Sweet and Joseph 
Kearns ha\e been active and efficient workers. 


Dresser District. No. 5/. — Organized in 
1876, with James Bennett superintendent, and 
maintained up to the time of the organization 
of the Congregationalists and Methodists. 

McKennan District, No. gy. — R. V. Shipp, 
Mrs. McKennan and James Hunt were asso- 
ciated with others in the organization of the 
school in this district, in 1877. Among the 
superintendents of this school have been R. V. 
Shipp, Mr. Mills, Ella Hunt, James Hunt and 
Mrs. Mary McKennan. 

Trenton District, No. 6j. — In the spring 
of 1 87 1 a Sunday-school was organized in the 
house of John McClintick, where it was main- 
tained until the erection of the school-house in 
this district, when it was removed to that place. 
J. M. Hart, Jacoli French, W. J. Millikin and 
E. B. Baldwin have superintended it at differ- 
ent times. 

Snozs.' Hill District. No. ?5. — A school was 
maintained at this jjoint for a number of years, 
commencing in 1870. W. J. Herrod was at 
one time suijerintendent and an active worker 
in the school. 

Blackford District. No. 6. — As early as 
1874 a school was organized at this point, and 
maintained thereafter with a fair degree ai 





regularity. l\Ir. (ie)'er was its first superin- 
tendent; W. J. iNIillikin and George Ash have 
also sui)erintended. 

J\ilcifa. — A union schot)! was urganized in 
the Congregational clnnx-li, in the spring of 
1887. since which time it has lieen regularly 
maintained during the summer. W. J. Milli- 
kin was its first su])erintendent ; following him 
there ha\-e been William Preston, V. W'alling- 
ford, Samuel Xelson and Mrs. ]\IcKennan. 

Licb District. No. Sj. — Organized in the 
sjjring ijf 1873. George H. Goodwin and W. 
J. ^lillikin were early superintendents. 


Ripon Di.ftrict. Xn. 40. — .\ Sunday-school 
was organized in ^larch, 1870, in the house of 
Dr. D. P. Lucas, on the northwest quarter of 
section 12, township 33, with Rachel Lucas, 
superintendent, and afterward was held in a 
house belonging to Robert Marrs, standing on 
the southwest quarter of section 10; and was 
also held a part of the time in J. H. Jones' 
house, on the northeast quarter of section 11. 
Thos. Summerfield fnjlowetl ^Irs. Lucas as 
superintendent. In 1872 it was reorganized 
in the school-house, and Thomas H. Bruner 
was superintendent; other superintendents, T. 
D. Bickliam, Mrs. Cook, Henry Faurot and 
^Irs. R. AI. Smith. 

Starr District, No. jo. — Organized in 1871. 
A\ esley Faurot was one (_)f the leading workers 
in the Sunday-school since its organization. 

Ellis District, No. 43. — In 1870 a Sunday- 
school was taught in Simon Bradfield's house, 
on section 4. and a part of the time in Thomas 
Dowell's, on the southw^est quarter of section 
24. From the time the school-house was built 
a schonl has Ijeen maintained most of the time 
during the summer months. J. B. Ellis and 

Timothy Kay superintended a good share of 
the time. 

Ro.fc Hill Di.'itrict, No. lOp. — Organized in 
1885. Mrs. Lyda Edmundson, Jesse Edmund- 
son, Mrs. Anna Bickham, Rev. A. Allison and 
Mrs. I. C. Wall successively superintended. 

Edna District. No. 7J. — In 1872 a Sunday- 
school was held in Peter Goodwin's granary, 
on the northwest quarter of section 21, with 
George Goodwin, superintendent. In April, 
1873, the school was reorganized in the new 
school-house, with W. J. Millikin, superintend- 
ent ; he was followed by W. R. Lackey. Owen 
Wimmer and Mr. Mills. The school was al- 
ways a prosperous one, and continued in active 
existence until the organization of the denomi- 
national schools. 

I'allcy District. .Vo. /i". — A prosperous 
Sunday-school has been maintained in this dis- 
trict a good portion of the time for a number 
of years. I\Irs. C. W. Gray was a faithful 
worker, and superintended the school a part of 
the time. 


Poland District, No. JO. — A Sunday-school 
was organized in this school-house in 1873. 
Chandler Stevenson, Samuel C. Coulter, Mrs. 
G. W. Leap, J. F. Flolman, John Poland and 
Samuel McCullough are among the number 
closely identified with the school's growth. 
Samuel C. Coulter, A. H. Mickey, G. ^^^ 
Jenkins and J. F. Hohnan were some of the 
superintendents. The school has not been 
kept up since 1888. 

Baylor District, No. qS. — As early as 1870 
Samuel C. Coulter, T. J. Calvin, Mr. and Airs. 
S. Lyon, E. G. Eggers and other workers or- 
ganized a Sunday-school at the house of S. 
Lyon, and elected him superintendent. It con- 
tinued during that year, Init was not reorgan- 


ized again until the school-house was com- 
pleted. In 1874 it was again organized, and 
held in the school-house. Its superintendents 
have been W. G. Baylor, Samuel C. Coulter, 
T. J. Calvin, G. W. Jenkins, E. G. Eggers, 
Mrs. S. Lyon and Dr. Owens. With 1884 the 
school ceased as a union school and was merged 
in the school organized bv the Baptists in their 
new church, and known as the Pleasant Hill 

Liggett District, A'^o. 8}'. — This school was 
originally a part of the one organized in Dr. 
Lucas' house, in Elm Grove township, and 
which thereafter became the Ripon school. 
When the school-house^ were built two Sun- 
day-schools were formed, one in the Ripon 
school-house and one in tlie Liggett school- 
house. Among the earl\- superintendents 
of the latter school were Ephraim ^Velch. 
Mr. Hoy and Wm. Liggett. This was main- 
tained as a union school until the erection of 
the Cecil church, when it was merged in the 
Methodist school organized in that building. 

Bishop District, No. 7. — This school was 
organized May i, 1871. Abner DeCou. Will- 
iam Newcomb, H. G. Pore, Alexander Bishop, 
H. ^\'. Sandusky and G. A. Cooper were among 
those most prominently identified with its or- 
ganization and early management. H. W. 
Sandusky was its first su])erintendent, and he 
was followed by G. W. Jenkins, G. A. Cooper, 
W. S. Bishop, Alexander Bishop, Miss Rose 
Dorland, W. W. Bradbury. A. M. Newman 
and Mrs. Catharine Miller. 

Lockard District, No. 28. — The Sunday- 
school in this district was organized in the 
spring of 1873, by many earnest workers, 
among whom may be named George Tilton and 
wife. Thomas Sharp. S. L. Whiting. H. J. 
Reece, \\'. F. Legg, :\Irs. Flora B. Illingsworth 
and ]\Irs. Clara Wimmer. Its superintendents 

have been A. B. Hammer, Thomas Sharp, S. 
L, Whiting, W. F. Legg. W. G. Faurot and 
Mrs. F. B. Illingsworth. 

Bartlcti District, No. 1 to. — This scliool 
was organized May i. 1887, with S. L. \\'hit- 
ney, superintendent. He has served as such 
since its organization, excepting in 1891, when 
Mrs. Allie Crane superintended. 

Lake Creek Sunday-school, District No. 
60. — In the spring of 1872. Mrs. Julia Knight, 
G. W. Jenkins, \\'. \\'. Baty. A. D. Robinson, 
;\Irs. Warren Chamberlain and several others, 
feeling the need of religious services, organized 
a Sunday-school at the home of H. D. Knight, 
with Mrs. Julia Knight as superintendent. 
The next year the school was mo\'ed to the 
Lake Creek school-house. District No. 60. and 
Mrs. Knight was again elected superintendent. 
Those who succeeded her as superintendent 
while it remained a union school in the school- 
house were : G. ^^^ Jenkins. ^^^ W. Baty, 
William Priest, j\Irs. Warren Chamberlain. J. 
N. Allison and W. F. Legg. 


Gore District, No. ?. — In the fall of 1866 
a few of the settlers in that neighborhood or- 
ganized a Sunday-school in James Rice's cabin, 
with Mrs. Rice as superintendent. The next 
summer it was reorganized, with the same su- 
perintendent, and maintained during the sum- 
mer. In the spring of 1868 it was reorgan- 
ized in Orville Thompson's store building, with 
Thompson Palmer, superintendent. After 
this it was held in the school-bouse in that dis- 
trict. Benjamin A. Rice was superintendent 
in 1869. Other superintendents ha\e been 
John F. Hill, Solomon Pierson and L. Baker. 
It was merged into the Methodist Sunday- 
school at Fletcher Chapel on the organization 
of the latter. 


JVatson District^ No. 5. — In the spring of 
1870 a school was organized in a claim cabin 
on J. C. McKnight's place on the southeast 
quarter of section 20, with T. J. Calvin, su- 
perintendent. A Dart of the time it was held 
in a log cabin on R. T. Goudy's place. It was 
reorganized in the school-house upon its com- 
pletion, with Samuel F. Doolen, superintendent. 
From 1872 till his death, in 1878, James C. 
Watson superintended, and through his energy 
and devotion to the school it always did effect- 
ive work. J. M. Morgan superintended for a 
time after Mr. Watson's death. 

Brccsc District^ No. 25. — A schoij has been- 
maintained during tlie summer months in this 
district most of the time frum 1872 until the 
erection of Fletcher Chapel. A. J. Swagerty 
and Mr. Hardaway were early superintendents. 

Closscr District, No. 61. — Organized 1875. 
Superintendents: F. M. Mendenhall, Samiiel 
Wade. D. M. Closser and H. W. Cook. 

Piety Hill District, No. lOO. — Organized 
1875, S'""^! maintained a good i^ortion of the 
time since. W. G. Hoo\-er has been one of the 
workers in this school. 

Cook District, No. 10:^. — A school has been 
kept up in this district a part of the time of late 
years. H. W. Cook has been one of the work- 


In April, 1871. Dr. D. B. Crouse, with sev- 
eral teachers from the Methodist Sunday- 
school, got quite a number of colored people 
together in the Congregational church, and or- 
ganized tbem into a Sunday-school, which was 
conducted the most of the time during that 
summer. During a part of the next year Rev. 
F. A. Armstrong got a few of the colored peo- 

ple together on Sundays and taught them from 
the Bible. 

The African Methodist Episcopal Suiidav- 
School was organized in July, 1877, by Nelson 
Case and Alexander Mackie, who superin- 
tended it alternately for al^out tl'.ree years, 
after which Nelson Case superintended alone 
till 1886. It was entirely conducted by white 
officers and teachers till about 1886. Mr. and 
Mrs. Case, Dr. Newlon, Mr. Mackie and one 
or two C'ther white teachers, assisted in the 
school till the colored people had learned to read 
and were able, in a measure, to teach. At the 
request of Mr. Case, the school at one time, 
before Mr. Nelson took charge of it. elected 
John Booka superintendent; nevertheless, the 
management of the school remained in the 
hands of the white teachers. From 1886 up to 
1 89 1 Edward Nelson was suoerintendent most 
of the time. In 1892 Miss Lillie Booka was 
superintendent. Henry Simley was elected su- 
perintendent in 1893 and has served e\'er since. 

The Second Baptist Sunday-School. — .\s 
soon as this denomination inclosed their church, 
in 1882, they organized a Sunday-school . and 
have maintained it, with few interruptions, 
since. Mrs. Mary E. Case and Miss Sarah 
Crane assisted them in their work for se\'eral 
years. The school had the following su- 
perintendents: A. J. Harper, G. W. Parks. 
M. A. Sumner, Thomas Scott, T. H. Scaltmar, 
G. D. Watson and A. L. W^illiams. Mr. 
Parks has been superintendent on two or three 
occasions, and in all has served quite a number 
of years. 

Mount Pleasant Baptist. — This school was 
formerly located a few miles northeast of Os- 
wego, but now has its home in the city. Su- 
perintendents : 1892, Mrs. Lue Butler; 1893- 
95, Mrs. Martha Robinson; 1896-1901, E. 


Second Methodist Episcopal. — This school 
was organized in 1880. Henry Smiley was 
superintendent from its organization until 
1892, with the excejjtion of 1887-88. when 
George W. Winn h.eld the ofiice. Miss Oliva 
Porter was elected superintendent at the o]3en- 
ing (.1" iSij:; and has served in that capacity 
e\'er since. ^Mrs. ]\Iary E. Case and Miss 
Sarah Crane taught in this scIkjoI for a num- 
ber of years. 

June 20. iSSo, a Sunday-school was organ- 
ized in the Presbyterian church for the colored 
people, of which the officers of the Presbyterian 
Sunday-school were in charge. It was main- 
tained during that summer only. 


In the fall of 1873 tlie Sunday-school work- 
ers of Chetopa organized a scIidoI anidug the 
tolored people. It met from time to time in 
nearly all the churches in town. It was con- 
ducted entirely by white officers and teachers. 
Dr. C. I-Iumble superintended until he went 
away, in 1877; after that John A. Lough and 
Mrs. Julia .A.. Knight superintended. After 
the organization of the denominational schools 
in the colored churches this school was given 

Second Methodist Episcopal. — Rev. Rob- 
ert Rector, pastor, secured the organization of 
this school in 1881. Its superintendents liave 
been : George W. Winn, Mr. Faghem. Mrs. 
Frances Wilson and Mrs. Margaret Claradv. 
TJie last mentioned was elected superintendent 
in 1894. and she has served very acceptably 
ever since. Notwithstanding many discour- 
agements the school has been quite prosperous 
;i.nd has helped sujiplv its numbers \\\t\\ good 

African Methodist Episcopal. — Organized 
ab(jut 1 88 1. — perhaps a few years later. Su- 
]5erinten(ients : Harrison ]\lc}ilillan and Nel- 
son Williamson. 

Baptist. — The colored folk in Chetopa have 
two Baptist Sunday-sch nls, <:)ne cimnected 
viith the Little Flock Baptist church, and the 
other allied with the Bethlehem Baptist church. 

African Met/iodist Episcopal. — Soon after 
the organization of the A. ]\I. E. church in 
Parsons, the pa'.^tcr. Rev. J. H. Daniels, also 
secured the organization of the Sunday-school. 
Th.e school dates fr.:m May, 1876. Among its 
superintendents have been: S. O. Clayton, 
J. L. Craw and Charles A. Morris. 

Second, or Xcw Hope, Baptist. — On May 
28, 1876, Rev. Thomas \\'ilson secured the 
organization n{ a Sunday-school in connection 
with this church. Superintendents : James 
Griflin, James \\'a!ker, E. W. Dorsey and J. 
E. Johnson. 

Mount Pleasant Baptist. — Superintend- 
ents: Ge:rge Harts, G. R. \\^estbrooks. James 
Griffin and J. T. Hays. 

Mount Zion Baptist. — This Sunday-school 
is held irregularly. 



Labette. — The school was organized in the 
spring of 1875, and has had the following su- 
perintendents : R. K. Jones, John Richard- 
.son, \\'illiam E. Crawford. J. P. Christy. W. 
V. McDonell, T. J. Reel, J. S. ^^IcLain, Elisha 
Richardson, E. L. Christy, J. C. Christian, 
Jennie Crawford and John Wiggins. 

Chetopa. — Prior t>; 18S1 the Baptists and 
Chri-t'ans had maintained a union Sunday- 


school. In 1881, witli tlie ass'stance of Rev, 
J. P. Ash. a Baptist Sunday-school was or- 
ganized, with J. C. \Mtt, superintendent. Fol- 
lowing Mr. Witt as superintendent there have 
been F. M. Smith, Mrs. M. E. Stevens, Miss 
Eva Alerrill, Robert Williams, Lewis Leak, 
Carl Simons, Mr?. \\'. S. Park. J. A. Shuck 
and Mrs. James Harvey. 

Qswcgo. — Organized Januar_\- i, 1871, in 
an old store building on the west side of block 
39, with D. E. Bent, superintendent. Other 
superintendents hax-e been : Dr. J. Spruill, 
Henry Glitz. J. X. .Miles. Z. Eaton, :\Ierritt 
Read, A. C. Baker, X. A. Douglas, Porter 
Sawyer. William P. Steel, X'ellie Harrison, 
Rev. C. X. H. Moore, A. T. Dickerman, E. S. 
Elli=, E. A. Karr, G. A. Cooper, Eva Terrill 
and Marion Parks. 

Alt-Jinoiit. — Organized in the spring of 
18S3. Superintendent;: Morris Bayless, E. 
Estes, George Hildreth, A. I. Ross; J. Self, 
Cyrus Baker and Bessie Hopps. Some of these 
have held otifice two or three different times, 
while others have served several years in suc- 

Dennis. — Th'e Baptist Sunday-school in 
Dennis was organized April 2, 1883, and came 
almost entirely from the Baptist union school, 
which was transferred from the country to 
town. William Scott. John Garrison, Mr. 
Payne, and G. W. Everhart have been faith- 
ful workers in this school. 

Barton. — This school has existed since the 
erection of the church, in 1885. J. H. Tibbets 
and family have been among its best workers. 

Pleasant Hill Sunday-Schoul. — The Bap- 
tists having completed their church building, 
in 1885 they organized a Sunday-school with 
Rev. C. T. Floyd as superintendent. He has 
been followed in the superintendencv by W. 

W. Lewellen, \\M. H. J. Schock and 

Mrs. A. Austin. 

Persons. — This school wa;. first organized 
in the city hall in 1874, with J. B. Stilwell su- 
perintendent, and an attendance of about 10 
scliolars. During the year it disbanded, and 
was not reorganized till about 1S7S, when J. 
W. Fee was elected superintendent. The 
scl'.oid at this time numbereil about 50. W'. 
\\'. X'eighhour succeeded Mr. Fee, and was" 
succeeded by C. F. Hcdgman, and he by I. J. 
L'zzell. W'. C. Main served from September, 
1P86, until 1893, l^eing succeeded by F. W. 
Flitton. \\\\o held the office unt'l 1896, when 
I. J. Czzel was again elected. Mrs. J. X. Kidd 
was superintendent in 1897, and E. S. Ellis, 
who t(iok her ])lace, is the superintendent at 
present. The average attendance is aliout 

Mound 1 'alley. — The Baptists of ]\Iound 
Valley worked in the union school until the 
erect'on of tl.e church, in 1882. since which 
t'me they have had a scln ol of their own. 
Among the sui>erintendents have been H. W. 
Savage, P. G. Shanklin, J. H. Elmore and 
\\'illiam Wilson. William \\'il'.-on was suc- 
c-e'led at the end of 1893 by D. S. Coleman, 
who held the office two years; in 189 '1-97 H. 
W". Savage was superintendent, in 189S-99 D. 
S. C. Lman, and in 1900 W. J. \\i;son was 

Edna. — In the spring of 1883 the Baptists 
organized a Sunday-schoi I at the Hawkins 
school-house, in District Xo. ijJ. where it was 
conducted until their church Iniilding was 
erected at Kingston, when it wa-. removed to 
that place. In 1887 the church was moved to 
Edna, and of course the Sunday-school with 
it. The school has had the f llowing super- 
intendents : J. Reasor. Rev. G. H. Goodwin, 


Julius Goodwin, J. W. Reasor, J. Reasor, 
Rev. T. M. Cooper, G. W. Reasor and Lewis 


AUamont. — A Sunday-school was organ- 
ized in [March, 1897, which has been main- 
tained continuously and has done good work. 
H. J. Trapp is superintendent. 

Parsons. — A Sunday-school was organized 
at this point in 1895. Clay Newton is super- 


Chctopa. — Until 1883 the Christians had 
united with the Baptists in holding a Sunday- 
school. In March, 1883, a Christian school 
was organized, and Dr. W. J. Latta and Mrs. 
E. S. Smith ha\'e been the superintendents. 

Parsons. — Organized in 1879. Superin- 
tendents: C. R. Millard, Fred Evans, Dr. 
John Tinder, T. L. Trotter and J. S. Vance. 

Central. — L'pnn the organization of the 
Central Christian church in Parsons, in 1890, 
a Sunda^■-scl^(>(ll was also formed, which has 
been maintained ever since. 

Osii'cgo. — The Christian Sunday-ischool 
was organized in the court-house, in the spring 
of 1876. Superintendents: 1876-77, John 
Overdeer; 1878-81, D. H. May; 1882-85, H. 
C. Draper; 1886-95, David Jennings; 1896- 
97, E. G. Smith: 1898-1901, H. O. Hurst. 

Mound ]'aJh-y. — The Sunday-school is 
some twelve or fifteen years old. Since 1892 
the superintendents have been : D. O. Lara- 
bee, Mrs. Kate Ellege, Levi Wilmoth, Alvah 
Shick, G. N. Matthews and Miss, Lizzie Pres- 

FJ\n City. — Among those who have su- 
perintended this school are S. P. \Vaugh and 
Perrv Allen. 


Oswego. — Organized January 23, 1870, 
and maintained most of the time since. How- 
e\'er, there have been two or three occasions 
when for several months at a time no school 
has been maintained. The school has no con- 
tinuous record, and I find no one who remem- 
bers definitely who its officers have been, but 
the following list of superintendents is prob- 
ably nearly complete: Dr. W. S. Newlon, Dr. 
W.' E. Austin, W. M. Johnson, Dr. W. S. 
Newlon, Dr. H. J. Martin, O. Whitney, C. 
U. Dorman, Mrs. Louise Morrison, Burton 
Thorpe, J. D. H. Reed, Rev. Park A. Bradford 
and wife and C. E. Coleman. During several 
years past, a sort of mis'.^ion Sunday-school 
has been conducted in the Congregational 
church under the superintendency of Dr. W. 
S. Newlon. 

Parsons. — Organized July 20, 1873. Su- 
perintendents: P. M. Griffin, A. H. Avers, 
I. Dickson, A. P. Wilson, E. C. Ward, J. H. 
Mosic, G. W. Ragland, E. C. Reed and Ar- 
thur Reed. 

Dccrton. — On the completion of the church, 
in 1880, a Sunday-school was organized, wdiich 
was maintained until the church was moved to 
V'aleda, in 1886. Rev. James Cooper super- 
intended it while he was pastor. 


During the time the Universalists had an 
organization and sustained preaching services' 
in Oswego, they also maintained a Sunday- 
school, of which Jibn F. Hill was superin- 


Parsons. — The rector of the church at 
Parsons also superintends the Sunday-school. 




Oszivgo. — Since the establishment of tlieir 
church in Oswego, this denomination has main- 
tained a Salibath-school. Mrs. Sadie Mc- 
\'icars and Mrs. Jessie Wells have been super- 
intendents. Schools have also lieen held at 
several other ))laces in the county, but I have 
not been furnished with information in regard 
to them. 


Parsons. — Organized in 1876, with Abra- 
ham Gary as suijerintendent. Since then the 
following persons have served in that capacity : 

W. F. Grierson, Butler, A. B. Hacker. 

Mrs. Sandercook, Joseph Ross, Mrs. M. Port- 
ram, James Terrell and T. M. Mathis. 

Union Listrict, No. 69. — Organized in 
1870, with Joseph Vance as superintendent, 
and maintained until 1874. 

Dennis. — The United Brethren Sunday- 
school was organized in 1882, and came 
mainly from the Sylvan Dale and F(.ur- 
Mile schiiiils; Alvin Miller was its first super- 
intendent. It is maintained with a fair degree 
of prosperity. J. D. McKeever and Noah Huff 
are reported as having su])erintended since Mr. 

Mortimer. — On the completion of the 
church at this point in 1892, a Sunday-school 
was organized which has had for superintend- 
ents : J. T. Mortimer, G. A. ^^'aid, M. L. 
^Mortimer and ]\I. E. Sparks; M. L. Abjrtimer 
being the superintendent at this writing. 

Mound 1 'alley and Valeda. — The schools of 
this deiKiminatidn at tliese points have not been 
\ery regular and permanent. Among those 
who have served as superintendent are : Wat- 
son Chrisman, A. J. Bessy, C. E. Porter and 
Charles Oakleaf. 

Hackbcrry Chapel. — This school was or- 
ganized in the Hyatt school-house in 1881. 
John Magie and his son and daughter, Morton 
and Sarah Magie, superintended until alx)ut 
1890: then A. M. Harshaw held that position. 
After the completion of the chapel in 1893, the 
school was moved into it. since which time it 
has had the following superintendents: John 
Riddick, Anna Micky and Joseph Ohles. 


Dennis. — As soon as this denomination 
completed its home of worshij) in Dennis, in 
1887, a Sunday-school was organized with J. 
Eisenhood as superintendent. The school has 
had a continuous existence, and, following Mr. 
Eisenhood, its superintendents have been: D. 
M. Mowrey, W. W. Blake, Frank Deinst, 
Frank Harper, Charles Underkolfler, Curtis 
Webb, Rolla Blake, H. L. Austin and F. C. 
Petrie, Jr. 


Osz^'cgo. — The first denominational Sun- 
day-school to be organized in the county was 
the first Methodist Episcopal Sunday-school 
of Oswego. In the summer of 1868 the Meth- 
odists first organized a school, of whicli Ansel 
Gridley, Sr., was superintendent. This, like 
all the other Sunday-,schools of that time, was 
run only during the warm weather: it closed 
before the cold weather of winter came on. 
This school as now conducted claims an existr 
ence only from Sunday, April 9, 1869, when it 
was again organized, since which time it has 
had an uninterrupted existence, and since the 
time when Mv. Case took the superintendency 
the schonl has not missed a single session. It 
is by o\-er a vear the oldest school that now has 
an existence in the county. At the organiza- 


tion of the school, on April 9, 1869, Ansel 
Gridley. Sr.. was again elected superintendent; 
he served as such till September 18, 1870, when 
Nelson Case, having been elected superintend- 
ent, first took charge of the school. ]\Ir. Case 
then served continuously a little over fifteen 
years; he tendered his resignation on Septem- 
ber 28, 1885, and it was accepted 01*1 October 
5. The pastor. Rev. J. A. Hyden, superintend- 
ed from this time till the close of the year. 
\\'. F. Tliorne sujierintended during 1886, and 
Rev. J. B. Ford, the paster, during 18S7. At 
the close of 1887 Xelson Case was again elect- 
ed superintendent, and since January i, 1888, 
has continued in that position. The school 
was organized in Crouse's Hall, on lot 5 in 
block 39, where it held its sessions during the 
summer of 1869; the following winter it met 
in two or three different places — a part of the 
time in \\'ells" Hall. In the summer of 1870 
the new church building was erected, and as 
soon as it was inclnsed the school commenced 
meeting in it. In the fall of 1870 the superin- 
tendent institutetl a teachers" meeting, which 
has been maintained weekly since. Normal 
classes have also been conducted in connection 
with the school work for several years. 

Clicfopa. — Organized July 17, 1870, with 
J. M. Cavaness. -superintendent, who served un- 
til July, 1872, when W. W. Sweet was elected 
superintendent. In January, 1873. L. J. \'an 
Landingham was elected, and served three 
years : he was followed by S. B. Sloan. In 
1877 ]\Ir. Cavaness was elected, and served, 
with the exception of a year or two when D. O. 
Ditzler superintended till 1886, when h.e went 
into the mini.stry. Following him, B. S. Ed- 
wards superintended until 1889. In that year 
^Ir. Cavaness was again placed in charge and 
continued there until 1899. when he was suc- 

ceeded bv Robert A. Lough, who is the pres- 
ent incumbent. 

Muiifana. — The Presbyterians having or- 
ganized their school upon the completion of 
their church, in 1878, the IMethodists then or- 
ganized a denominational school, the two hav- 
ing theretofore been conducted as a union 
school in the school-house. 

Altmnont. — Organized in 1884. Superin- 
tendents : O. P. Van Slyke. J. O. King. Arthur 
J. Rust, W. J. Lough. P. H. Riepie, E. D. 
Keinze, Mrs. Lucy Best, C. M. Doughman, E. 
J. Kinzer and Samuel McClelland. 

Fairz'icz^'. — A Sunday-school was organ- 
ized at this appointment in the school-house 
before the church was erected in 1899: upon 
the completion of the edifice, it was organized 
as a Methodist school in the church on May 
7, 1899. James Paxton was superintendent to 
the close of 1900. ]\Iiss Alice Ball is the pres- 
ent superintendent. 

Parsons. — In the summer of 1873 a Meth- 
odist Sunday-school was organized, with the 
pastor, Rev. C. R. Rice, superintendent. Ow- 
ing to the straitened circumstances and unor- 
ganized condition of the work, the school did 
not maintain a continuous existence, but part 
of the time united with other workers in car- 
rying on a union school. Besides Rev. C. R. 
Rice, the early superintendents were : M. \\'al- 
lace, M. G. Brown, and J. ^^^ Cowles. In 
January, 1876, T. H. Cunningham was elected 
superintendent, and continued to act as such 
until the close of 1890. In January, 1891, 
J. L. Kennerer was elected superintendent, and 
in Januarv. 1892 Dr. M. E. Wolf was elected, 
his term concluding with the close of 1893. 
Elmer T. Mendal served during 189 j. 1895 
and 1896, and since then O. F. Penny witt has 
been the superintendent, with the exception of 


a few weeks, when George H. Olds held that 

Center Chapel. — Upon the completion of 
this church building, in the spring of 1887. a 
Sunday-school was at once organized therein. 
It was conducted as a union school until the 
close of 1890, with the follnwing superintend- 
ents: .Mrs. M. E. Casky, A. W. Meador, and 
F. jNI. Morrison. In January, 1891, it was 
organized as a Methodist school, with F. M. 
Morrison, superintendent: in Januar}', 1892, 
W. E. Snyder succeeded him. 

Labette. — Organized in 1876. Superin- 
tendents: 1875, J. K. Sipple; 1877-84, J. B. 
Payne: 1885. J. E. Williams; 1886, J. B. 
Payne; 1887-92. A. C. Lamm. Since 1892 
the superintendents have heen : Leslie Scott, 
Leslie Piatt, Allen Piatt, William Watson and 
Ethelda Reedy. 

Stover. — The Methodists have maintained 
a Sunday-school as one of the features of their 
church work at this apijointment. Royal 
Davis is the present superintendent. 

Dresser District, No. 31. — The Methodist 
school at this point was organized in the spring 
of 1883, and was maintained until the fall of 
1886, at which time the class was changed from 
this to Valeda. \\'. J. Millikin was superin- 
tendent the first two years, after which a man 
with the same name, excepting that his name 
is spelled with an "e" instead of an "i" in the 
last syllable ( W. J. Milliken). superintended. 

Mound Fallcy. — Organized in the fall of 
1880. by E. A. Graham. Suiierintendents : 
J. J. Decker, A. B. Hammer, R. W. Simpson. 
O. B. Moore, Isaac Hill, Alexander Moore 
and E. A. Graham. Since 1892 the superin- 
tendents have been as follows : 1893-94, James 
Beggs: 1895, J- D. Gillespie; 1896-97, E. A. 
Graham; 1898. James Beggs; 1899, J. F. Bot- 
torrf; 1 900-0 1, A. J. Lovett. 

Flcteher Chapel. — When this church was 
inclosed, in the fall of 1883, the Sunday-school 
was moved from the Breese school-house to it. 
Solomon Pierson was first superintendent. Of 
those who succeeded him I have not been fur- 
nished a list, l)Ut understand that among them 
were Fannie Kirljy and R. .\. Hill. 

//('/Tuv//.— This scliodl has ever been 
known as the "Ex-ergreen." from the fact that 
while most of the schools in the country closed 
during the winter months, this was kept run- 
ning the _vear round, from its first organization. 
It was organized in April, 1871. in a granary 
on the place of James Beggs, and was after- 
ward held in a dwelling-house until the Hen- 
derson school-house was completed, when it 
was removed to that building, where it was 
held until Hopewell church was completed, 
since which time its himie has been in that 
structure. From its organizatii n until 1884, 
James Beggs was its superintendent, with the 
exception of iine year, when George IMcDole 
filled that place. During the period lietween 
1884 and 1892 it had several su])erintenden:s, 
among whom were L. C. ^Masters, W . T • 
Beggs, M. Daniels and James Monroe. Since 
1892 the following named persons have, held 
the office: 1893-94, Nelson Drenner; 1895- 
96, Mrs. Ella. Daniels; 1897-98, J. A. Jamison; 
1899, Mrs. E. J. Phillips; 1900-01, E. M. 

Pleasant Hill. — Organized in 1890, and 
has had for superintendents: James Wood- 
yard, Mrs. Barker and James Venable. 

Excelsior. — Durnig the earlier history of 
the county, the MctlmdiMs held preaching serv- 
ices in several of the in Mound 
Valley and Osage townships, and many of the 
schools that were classed as union were really 
Methodist Sundav-schools. Of one of these 
schools J. W. Morain was superintendent a 


number of years. When the Excelsior church 
was erected in 1891, these appointments and 
schools were consolidated, and a Methodist 
Sunday-school was organized at the Excelsior 
church at the opening of 1892. I have not 
been furnished with a full list of its superin- 
tendents, but among them have been W. H. 
Brown, Francis Edgar and Emma Morain. • 

Edna. — Almost from the first organization 
of Sunday-school work in Edna, it was largely 
under the control of the Methodists ; but it was 
not till they went into the new church, in the 
spring of 1883, that the Methodists organized 
a distinctively denominational school. The 
following persons have superintended the 
school : E. B. Baldwin, L. Powell, H. S. Wim- 
mer and Charles A. Long. The last named 
gentleman is still the incumbent. 

Angola. — W. H. Troxson has Iseen super- 
intendent of this school since 1898. 

Bavtlctt. — After the completion of the 
church at this point in 1893, a Sunday-school 
was organized therein, and has since been main- 
tained ; it has had the following superinten- 
dents: S. L. Whiting. I. (;. Wiley, Mrs. Belle 
Cellars and L E. Ross. 

Matthcivson. — This school was organized 
in the new church on its completion in 1894. 
Its superintendents have been : J. T. Marshall, 
Mrs. Rosa Meador, N. D. Sturm, Mrs. W. D. 
Harry and Mrs. O. Baker. 

Cecil. — As soon as the Methodist church 
at Cecil was inclosed, the Sunday-schocl which 
had been previously conducted at the Liggett 
school-house was moved to the church; this 
was done in March, 1883. J. N. Thompson 
was its first superintendent, and since then 
there have been J. D. Lombard, J. V. Lewman. 
Lydia A. Owens, Xoah E. Barrick and Eliza- 
beth Laman. 


Mound J 'alley. — Organized December 7, 
1884; Dr. L. T. Strother, superintendent: 48 
scholars, divided into eight classes. The 
school has been maintained ever since. C. M. 
Brown superintended for a year or two. Dr. 
L. T. Strother then had charge of the school 
until 1896., when he was succeeded by J. F. 
Wise, who ser\'ed to the close of 1898. C. 
M. Watson has been superintendent since Jan- 
uary, 1899. 

Chctopa. — Organized July 17, 1870, with 
C. S. Montague, superintendent, and on August 
25, 1872, Dr. C. Humble was elected superin- 
tendent. He continued to serve until he went 
away, in 1877. Following him the school has 
been superintended by C. H. McCreery, S. O. 
Barnes, Fred. Allen, Jesse M. Morgan. Julia 
R. Knight, Arnold D. Robison, Nelson E. 
Allen, J. Harry Evans and A. B. Crosby. 

Parsons. — Organized in December. 1872, 
with Harry L. Gosling, superintemlent. Suc- 
ceeding him t'r.ere ha\-e been the following su- 
perintendents : i\I. B. Park. I. N. McCreery, 
G. C. Hitchcock, S. i\I. Cambern. Frank Mul- 
ford, S. A. Scott, F. L. Schaub. W. H. Martin. 
J. L. Morrison. \\'. Aikenhead, M. J. iNIc- 
Knight and E. H. ^IcCreery. M. J. Mc- 
Knight is the present incumbent. 

Os:ecgo. — Organized in Alay, 1870. with 
Cornelius V. iMonfort superintendent. He was 
followed by J. J. Browne, J. W. Monfort. E. 

B. Newton, Alexander Mackie, Chas. Coit. An- 
drew Mackie, Albert A. Smith, R. P. Carpen- 
ter. Fred C. Wheeler, Henry L. AlcCune. Fred. 
W. Keller, E. P. Mossman, J. M. Berry, W. 

C. iNIitchelj, T. E. Tregemba and F. S. 

Montana. — When the Presbyterian church 



was built at Montana, in 1878, the Sunday- 
school was at once organized therein, with 
James Morning as superintendent. The school 
was maintained irregularly, and both the 
church and Sunday-school have been discon- 
tinued for some years past. 

Lake Creek. — The Lake Creek Presbyterian 
church having been built, the Sunday-school, 
Avhich had been maintained at the school- 
house, was removed to it, in 1884, where it was 
opened as a Presbyterian school, and the union 
school was discontinued. In 1893 the church 
and Sunday-school were removed to Bartlett. 
The superintendents of the school, while in the 
Lake Creek Presbyterian church, were : A. D. 
Rabison, Thomas E. Baty. Mrs. J. H. Cellars, 
Irwin A. Robinson and again Thomas E. Baty. 

Bartlett. — In 1893 the Presbyterian church 
was removed from its original location at Lake 
Creek to Bartlett, and Sunday-school work 
was regularly taken up at the new place. The 
superintendents have been : J. L. Goldsmith, 
H. J. Reece, Thomas E. Baty and Charles A. 

Edna. — This school was organized in their 
church in Kingston, in 1879, where it was con- 
tinued until the church was moved to Edna, 
in 1887. John T. Watt was superintendent 
while the school remained at Kingston and for 
a year after it was moved to Edna. In 1889 
H. Allen was superintendent. No school was 
maintained during 1890 and 1 891. It was 
reorganized in January, 1892, with J. T. Watt 
as superintendent. ^Ir. \^'att's superintend- 
ency has been renewed on several occasions. 
There have been, perhaps, two or three others 
who have at times served as superintendent, 
one of whom is J. F. Holten. The member- 
ship of the school is about 45. 

Altamont. — The Sundav-school work has 

not been continuously maintained in the church 
at this point. I have not been able to get defi- 
nite facts about the work, but learn, howe\'er, 
that J. O. King and A. B. Roller were super- 
intendents some of the time prior to 1896, and 
since that time B. L. Dennison has served. 

The Chctopa United Presbyterian Sunday- 
School was organized in Thomas" Hall in May, 
1 87 1, and on the completion of the church 
building in the fall of that year, the Sun- 
day-school there found its home, where 
it has had a continuous existence to the 
present time, meeting in the morning" be- 
fore preaching, except for a thort time, 
when it was held immediately after preach- 
ing. Two features of this school are worthy 
of special commendation, the first being the 
fact that nearly all the congregation is in 
the Sunday-school, thus giving it probably 
the largest per cent, of adult attendance of any 
school in the county; the other item referred 
to is a mission collection on nearly every Sun- 
day. Rev. J. C. McKnight has continuously 
served as Bible-class teacher from the organ- 
ization of the school. John Torrance and 
William Wade have been successful teachers 
respectively of the classes for young men and 
young women. T. J. Cah-in was the fir^t su- 
perintendent, and held the ]5osition fur ten 
years, from 1871 to 1881. Succeeding him 
were the following parties: Samuel Wade six 
months. I. X. Anderson three years, John Tor- 
rance five vears, David Burnside one year, 
Mrs. Robert :\IcCaw one year. Mrs. R. J. 
Stewart, the next incumbent, served se\-eral 
I vears to the close of 1893: she was succeeded 
j by A. P. Free. D. Burnside, John Torrance, 
1 and William Wade, se\-eral of whom served 
I a number of years. \\'illiam Wade is the pres- 
ent superintendent. 






In the spring- of 1872 several of the Sun- 
day-school workers of Chetopa j.iined in 
issuing a call for a meeting to form a county 
Sunday-school association. Pursuant to this 
call, quite a number met in the Presbyterian 
church in Chetopa, on March 21. 1872. and 
effected a temporary organization by electing 
J. AI. Cavaness temporary president and C. S. 
]^Iontague temporary secretary. A constitu- 
tion was adopted, and the following ofificers 
elected : President. I. W. Patrick ; secretary, 
C. S. Montague: trea.surer, T. J. Calvin; ex- 
ecutive committee, J. M. Ca\aness, Nelson 
Case. J. F. Hill and Amy B, Hrjward. Meet- 
ings have been held annually, with t\\"o excep- 
tions, and several years two or m(.)re meetings 
have been held. No meeting was held in 
either 1888 or 1890. The annual meetings 
to the end of 1892 were held as follows: 
Oct. 15, 1872. Oswego: Oct. 21. 1873. Che- 
topa; Sept. 2T,. 1874. Oswego: Sept. 26, 1875. 
Chetopa: Sept. ly. 1876. Parsons: Sept. 19, 
1877. Oswego: Sept. 18. 1878. Mound Val- 
ley: Sept. 22. 1879, Labette: Sept. 21, 1880, 
^Montana: Oct. 6, 1881, Oswego: March 21. 
1882, Chetopa: Alay 3. 1883. Mound \'alley : 
May 7, 1884. AItam..nt: May 21. 1885. La- 
bette: May 12. 1886. Altamont: Oct. 5. 1887, 
Mound Valley: Jan. 3, 1889, Edna: March 
17, 1 89 1, Oswego: Feb. 29, 1892. Mound Val- 
ley: Dec. 13, 1892, Chetopa. Presidents to 
date I if publication: March' 21. 1872, ii Oct. 
22. 1873. I- "^V. Patrick: 1873-77. Nels -n 
Case: 1877-79. Rev. F. L. \\'alker: 1879, D. 
G. Brown: 1880. Rev. R. M. Scott: 1881-83, 
Rev. C. H. McCreery: 1883-86. J. M. Cava- 
ness: 1886, Rev. J. P.. Ford: 1887-88. J. H. 
Elmore: 1889. John Slaughter: 1890-92, F. L. 

Schaub: 1S92-93. Agnes Baty; 1893-94, Dr. 
L. T. Strother: 1895-96, F. P. Miller; 1896- 
98. B. F. Briggs; 1 899-1 901, '\i. E. Carringer. 
Secretaries to date of publication: 1872. C. 
S. Montague: 1872-73, Rev. J. H. Metier; 
^^7i-77- C. Humble: 1877, Nelson Case: 1878, 
L. J. Van Landingham; 1879, G. K. Sipple; 
1880-S5, Charles T. Carpenter; 1885-87. Will- 
iam Paramore; 1887-88, Hattie Beggs: 1889- 
92, Agnes Baty: 1892-93, Nellie Harrison; 
1894-95, Nellie Lough; 1896, Mrs. Rosa 
Meador; 1897-98. C. D. Lynd ; 1899. Mrs. 
Agnes Crawford: 1900. Minnie Shone: 1901. 
Margaret Cellars. 


Before e\'en the county asscciati(.)n had 
been formed, the Sunday-school workers in 
Oswego met on September 26. i86g. and 
formed a local organization, of which Nelson 
Case was elected president. This was the first 
association organized in the county. After 
the formation of the county association, the 
cities organized or reorganized their associa- 
tions on a basis uniform with the township as- 
sociations. At tl:e annual convention of the 
coimty association in October. 1875, it was 
resolved to try and secure the organization of 
the se\-eral townships as fast as possible, and 
within the next two years an organization was 
effected in each township and city in the county. 
Many of these associations, however, were 
short-lived. Their original organization was 
the result of visits and work b}' one or more 
of the officers of the county association, and 
when these visits ceased most of the township 
associations ceased to hold meetings. Two 
or three townships have maintained th.eir or- 
ganizations, and have regularly held conven- 
tions, among them North and Osage: and in 


all of the townships quite an am(iimt of local I was commenced in 1899 and completed the 
)rk has been done. following spring: it was dedicated July i, 

[900. Elders j. W. Westphal and D. H. 



Dennis. — The church organized at this 
place a number of years ago was abandoned 
early in the "nineties," as the members had 
nearly all mii\ed away. Those left joined with 
those about Parsons for worship. 

Parsons. — The Adventists have been hold- 
ing services in Parsons since 1893. Not hav- 
ing any house of worship of their own, they 
rent a hall where services are held. Elder D. 
H. Oberholtzer has been one of their principal 
e\-angciists in late years. 

Clictopa. — A church was organized at this 
point as early as 1887, and services were held 
in various places for several years. In 1893 
they commenced the erection of a church, which 
was completed and dedicated April 22, 1894. 
Not being strong enough to maintain their or- 
ganization, they sold their c'nurch Iniilding to 
the cit}- to be used for school purposes, and 
have practically abandoned this place since 

Oswego. — The Church at Oswego was or- 
ganized in 1898, but its membership was large- 
1\- made up of those who had pre\-iously joined 
the organization at Stover. The latter was 
probably the oldest organization of this de- 
nomination in the county, commencing in i86g ; 
services have been held quite regularly since. 
Elders John Madison, H. C. Blanchard, L. D. 
Santee and others have been efficient evan- 
gelists. Soon after organizing in Oswego, 
steps were taken to secure a church building. 
The erection of this building, on the northeast 
corner of Second avenue and Merchant street. 

Oberholtzer have done evangelistic service 


I Zion Hill. — This church was organized in 
'< the fall of 1883. by .Mrs. Clara Utsey, with 15 
members. Ser\-ices were conducted by her in 
the Stover school-house until the completion 
of their church building. The church was 
erected in the fall of 1884, on the northwest 
corner of section 10. in Fairview tuwnship. 
Besides Mrs. Utsey, Re\-. Mr. Barterbaugh and 
Re\-. ]\Ir. Cross have iireachcd for this con- 
gregation. It has for some time been witlnjut 
a pastor. 

Center Bethel was organized about the same 
time as Zion Hill. A church house was erect- 
ed in the spring of 1884, on the northwest 
corner of section 21. in Liljerty township. The 
same ministers who have supplied Zion Plill 
have also preached for this congregation. 

Janes. — An organization of this church 
was effected at the Janes school-house, in Dis- 
trict No. 95. in the fall of 1884. It has had the 
same ministers as Zion Hill church. 


Quite a numlier of this persuasion were 
among the first settlers along Pumpkin Creek, 
in the southern part of Mound Valley and Can- 
ada townships. Among those who were prom- 
inent were the families of Hart, Richard and 
Benjamin Davis, Phineas and Charles Fultz. 
There were se\-eral among them who were 
recognized as preachers. Services were held 
from house to house (|uite regularly. When the 
school-house was built, in 1877, in District No. 



94, they organized, and removed their services 
to that place, where the}- have since been regu- 
larly continued. 


In January, 1883, an organization of this 
denomination was effected at the home of Rev. 
J. Davis, in Oswego. Meetings were conduct- 
ed in the court-house, and part of the time in 
Liggett's Hall. Rev. J. Davis was elected 
pastor, and continued to serve as such till 
about the middle of April, 1885, when the or- 
ganization was practically disbanded. Serv- 
ices were not maintained regularly, however, 
during all of that time. 


Januar}- 13, 1884, an organization taking 
this title was formed in Liggett's Hall, in Os- 
wego, as follows: Mrs. E. Smith, president: 
Airs. I. C. Pierce, vice-president: Mrs. M. A. 
Hurlbut, secretary ; Dr. R. W. Wright, treas- 
urer. I do not know tn what extent they 
maintained meetings. 


Was formed by Thomas D. Bickham as a new 
religious organization, in Chautauciua county. 
in 1880, and the following year a class was 
organized at Rose Hill school-house, in Dis- 
trict No. 91, which has been maintained since 
then. This is the only class in the county be- 
longing to this organization. Since the death 
of Thomas D. Bickham, in 1889, his son, 
Ezra E. Bickham, has been the leading spirit 
in this church. 


The southwest corner of section 33, town- 
ship T,2, range 21, was deeded to F. Swanwick 
and Randall Bagbv, for the use of all religious 

denominations. The neighbors contributed 
work and logs, and in January, 1870, a log 
church was erected upon this ground, and a 

cemetery was also started thereon. Nearly all 
denominations at one time or another held 
services here : possibly the preachers of the 
Methodist Church South used it as much as any 
other. The building was used for both school 
and church purposes until the new school-house 
was built in District No. 24, after which the 
building was torn down. The burying-ground 
is still used. 


This church professed to be organized on 
the plan of the old apostles, of having one 
church in a place. The first meeting looking 
toward its organization was held October 27, 
1889, in the hall at Wilsonton. Rev. George 
E. Thrall was elected chairman and i\Irs. Ella 
B. Wilson, secretary. A constitution was 
adopted and officers elected. 

Che to pa. — Father Schoe-: maker and other 
priests had visited along the Neosho as soon 
as settlers had commenced to arrive, and had 
done considerable religions work: but no 
church was organized by them till 1871. On 
July 16, 1 87 1, Father Dougherty tooi: charge 
of the work, and began holding services in 
Drake's Hall. A building was erected, and on 
May 31, 1874, dedicated by Rev. E. Bononcini, 
pastor, and Rev. F. Swemberg, of Emporia. 
Father Bononcini had charge of the work for 
some time prior to December, 1880. when he 
was succeeded by C. Haspenthal. Since 1880, 
the following have been pastors: 1881-83, 
Father Laehre; 1883-85, Father Weiner : 1886- 
87, T. J. Butler: 1887-88. J. J. O'Connor; 
1888-90, John McNamara; 1891-93, B. M.