The History of Johnson County, by Ed Blair



Location -- Churches -- Commercial Enterprises -- Cemetery -- The Press.

     Edgerton has a population of 450, is located on the Santa Fe railroad, fourteen miles southwest of Olathe, and is in a fertile farming country. It has three churches. The Methodist Episcopal church has a fine $10,000 building which was dedicated in October, 1913. Rev. A. L. Day is pastor. This church is located on the corner of Fourth and Hulett streets, and the congregation has a fine parsonage which was erected at a cost of $1,500.

The Presbyterian church is located at Third and Nelson streets, and is a handsome frame building, costing $7,000. Rev. J. S. Swagger is pastor. A $2,000 parsonage is owned by this church, also. This church has a membership of 140.

     The Catholic church is in charge of Rev. L. E. Kramer. The building is an elegant frame structure, costing between $7,000 and $8,000, with a fine parsonage also.


     The Edgerton State Bank has a capital stock of $20,000, and a surplus of $14,000. The following are the officers: President, Frank Braun; vice-president, J. R. Whitla; cashier, Martin J. Kelly; assistant cashier, W. F. Braun. The Edgerton people take a pride in their schools, and are now agitating the question of building a district high school, as the present building is inadequate for the increasing needs of the district.

     The Edgerton Hardware Company does a large business in hardware, implements and automobiles. J. R. Whitla is the manager.

     The Farmers Store with C. E. Harlow, manager, does an excellent business, and carries a general stock of dry goods, groceries, hardware and implements.

     Pearce & Cordell are dealers in groceries and dry goods. E. J. Runner, druggist. Thomas S. Greer, physician and surgeon. Hale & Dwyer are general merchants. Besides these, all smaller lines of business are well represented. The town has a large lumber yard and an elevator with a capacity of 50,000 bushels. A new modern hotel, band, thirty acre natural park adjoining the city on the east, and as Mr. Mayes puts it, "four Killarney lakes which furnish boating." The Odd Fellows hold an annual picnic in the park and a Chautauqua is held every year.



     Natural gas is supplied by the Kansas Natural Gas Company. The two cemeteries, Catholic and the one belonging to the Edgerton Cemetery Association, are well kept and present a neat appearance.

     The following is a list of the firms doing business in Edgerton: W. H. Kelly, elevator and corn mill; Edgerton Lumber Company, D. R. Hale, manager; Edgerton State Bank, M. J. Kelly, cashier; Edgerton Hardware Company, J. R. Whitla, manager, hardware and implements; Farmers' Store, C. E. Harbour, manager, general merchandise; Pearce & Cordell, general merchandise; Hale & Dwyer, general merchandise; Ernest Crow, barber; L. J. Roller, restaurant and bakery; E. J. Runner, drugs; Edgerton Creamery Company, C. E. Todd, manager; S. B. Ewart, painter and paper hanger; S. M. Lard, blacksmith; G. E. Leberman, blacksmith; P. E. Wolfley, real estate and loans; J. C. Crawford, painter and paper hanger; L. E. Walker, painter and paper hanger; F. O. Grahm, barber; J. M. Collins, dray and transfer; J. S. Edenfield, horse and mule buyer; J. F. Hastings, postmaster; The Edgerton "Journal," Charles W. Mays, publisher.


     The people of Edgerton and vicinity are proud of their cemeteries, one of which lies one mile south and four miles west, while the other, the Catholic, is one mile south and an equal distance to the east.

A few years ago it was thought the present cemetery would shortly be too small for their needs, so the late C. M. Dickson sold to the board of trustees a number of acres adjoining the old cemetery on the east and south, so that the plot was more than double in size.

     The cemetery board takes care of the ground and all the graves, no one being obliged to look after their own lots.


     Mr. Charles Mayes publishes the Edgerton "Journal," a live newspaper. Mr. Mayes is a Kansas product, born in Pleasanton, Kan., in 1873, and began learning the printing trade when eight years old. He worked in many newspaper offices before he embarked in business for himself. He established the "Journal" in December, 1906, bringing the old Washington press formerly used by the "Greeley News," Mound City "Democrat" and LaCygne "Standard," which he purchased from Bruce Dennis of the La Cygne "Journal." Mr. Mayes is the father of eight children, a gain of seven since he came to Edgerton, and is not only educating his flock, but is making the financial end show up in a substantial way. He is a good town booster, and is appreciated by the good citizens of Edgerton and surrounding country. His office is located in the historic Methodist Episcopal church that was removed from Lanesfield to Edgerton



after the railroad established the town of Edgerton. The main part of the Hotel DeTar building at Edgerton was formerly the United Presbyterian church at Lanesfield, and was brought here at the same time. The studding in this building is 4x6 oak, and the building is still substantial, notwithstanding the fifty years or more of service. The old Ft. Scott and Leavenworth military road, as well as the Santa Fe Trail, passed through Edgerton.

     David M. Evans located here in 1857, when he was six years old. On the way here, he with his uncle, later Judge David Martin, camped at Jonathan Millikan's, at Olathe. They erected a log house on his farm at first, and, shortly afterwards, a stone house. During the border trouble Mr. Evans remained here alone, Mr. Martin being called away to duties connected with the home guards.

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