KANSAS COLLECTION BOOKS

William G. Cutler's History of the State of Kansas


BROWN COUNTY, Part 22

[TOC] [part 23] [part 21] [Cutler's History]

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES - WALNUT TOWNSHIP (JOSS - WAGONER).

G. JOSS, farmer, stock raiser and feeder, proprietor of Maple Grove Stock Farm, Section 22, Township 2, Range 15, P. O. Fairview, was born in Canton Berne, Switzerland, January 24, 1829 and lived in his native country until his fifth year, when his parents immigated (sic) to America, first locating in Weinsberg, Holmes Co., Ohio. Mr. Joss lived in Ohio until the spring of 1858, and then removed to East Troy, Walworth Co., Wis., where he remained six months. From there he came to Kansas, locating in the city of Leavenworth, November 28, 1858, remaining in this city five and a half years, and working at his trade - that of wagon maker. In the fall of 1863 he removed to Atchison County, where he lived six months, and then removed to his farm in Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has resided since. He is a member of the Congregational Church of Fairview. He was Treasurer of School District No. 16, Brown County, for six years. He took part in the War of the Rebellion, as a member of Captain I. N. Speer's Company, Twenty-second regiment Kansas Militia, and enlisted in Walnut Township in October, 1864; severed one month and was discharged at Kansas City. He was married in Holmes County, Ohio, May 23, 1852, to Miss Martha Robinett, a native of Ohio. They have nine children living - Christian Frederic, (married to Miss Allie Driblebeis, a native of Ohio), Rosa, Charles W., (married to Miss Hattie Gardner, a native of Kansas), George E., John Frank, William I., Edward C., Jess Warren and Myrtle Leonara. Maple Grove Stock Farm, as Mr. Joss' fine estate is known, is one of the finest and best improved farms in Brown County. It contains 720 acres; is all enclosed by substantial fences; is divided into bottom, timber and upland; is in a high state of cultivation, and is well supplied with water by means of wells, springs and Spring Creek, which flows in a southeast direction the farm (sic). The orchards cover ten acres. Orchard No. 1 contains 500 apple, 400 peach, and a number of pear and cherry trees. Orchard No. 2 contains about 300 fruit trees of all varieties. There is also a magnificent maple grove on the property, from which the farm takes its name. The improvements are superb, and include among others, a new and modern built family mansion, containing nine rooms, elegantly furnished and surrounded by handsome shrubbery, shade trees and evergreens; two tenant houses, one containing four, the other six rooms; a frame barn, 22x50 feet; a combined granary, corn-crib and implement house, 40x52 feet, etc. Mr. J. raises 800 bushels of corn; cuts from 50 to 60 acres of hay, yearly; has 80 acres seeded down to timothy, clover and blue-grass; feeds two car loads of cattle; keeps 125 fine-grade cattle; 200 head of Poland-China and Berkshire hogs, and 16 head of horses. Mr. Joss is one of the early settlers of Brown; has made his means here and speaks in high terms of this portion of Kansas. He is an earnest, intelligent and prosperous farmer, and a useful and popular citizen.

THOMAS LAUGHLIN, farmer, Section 32, Township 2, Range 15, P. O. Sabetha, Nemaha County, was born in County West Meath, Ireland, in 1808, and lived in his native county until 1828, when he immigrated to America, locating in Pennsylvania where he resided for two years. He then went to New York City, whence he shipped to New Orleans, where he resided one winter, thence to Louisville, Ky., where he remained a short time and then went to Vincennes, Ind., where he resided for twenty years and was engaged in farming, thence he removed to Poweshiek County, Iowa, where he resided until May, 1856, when he became a resident of Kansas, locating in Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has ever since resided. He is a member of the Catholic Church. He was married in Wabash County, Ind., in 1835, to Miss Jane Gorland, a native of Miami County, Ohio; she died in 1874. Mr. Laughlin has five children living - Sylvester Thomas, married to Miss Catherine Brown, a native of Pennsylvania; Mary, married to Henry Monroe, a prosperous and influential farmer and an old resident of Brown County; Matthew, married to Miss Ann Goodfellow, a native of England, she died in 1880; and Martha, married to Emery Jaunichs a native of Germany. Mr. L. is one of the "old timers" of Brown County, of which he relates many reminiscences, and now after an industrious and active life is enjoying the evening of his days in the family of his son-in-law, Henry Monroe Esq.

W. C. MEYER, farmer, stock raiser, dealer and feeder, proprietor of the Delaware Stock Farm, east half of section 10, and west half of northwest quarter and west half of sonthwest (sic) quarter, of Section 11, Township 3, Range 15, P. O. Frinkville, was born in Hanover, Germany, August 4, 1830, and lived in native country until his mother (his father being dead) immigrated to America and located in Cincinnati, Ohio, where Mr. M. lived with the exception of two years spent in Iowa and Missouri, until the spring of 1858, when he became a resident of Kansas, locating in Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has since resided. From 1861 to 1868 Mr. Meyer was engaged in freighting on the plains on his own account, principally between Atchison and Denver. He has been married twice. The first marriage took place in Brown County, in July, 1868, to Miss Elizabeth Griffin, a native of England, but whose parents were among the first settlers of Atchison. Three children were the fruit of this marriage - Frank Herschel, Alberta Rose and Leroy Emerson. The second marriage occurred in Brown County, April 12, 1881, to Mrs. Matilda Banning, a native of Illinois. By a former marriage Mrs. Meyer had three children - Ella Sophronia Proctor (married to Cornelius White, a native of Illinois and a resident of Robinson Township, Brown County), John M. Proctor and Effie E. Proctor. Delaware Stock Farm, as Mr. Meyer's magnificent estate is appropriately named, has the Delaware River flowing through the southwest portion of the property. A fine spring branch flowing from north to south the whole length of the farm and a number of excellent springs, and is in short, as well watered and is as fine a stock farm as there is in the State. It contains 480 acres, divided into upland, bottom and timberland, is well fenced - mostly by a handsome Osage orange hedge - and is in a high state of cultivation. Mr. M. also owns twenty acres of prime timberland in Walnut Township, five miles northeast of the home farm. The orchard on the farm covers eight acres, and contains 400 apple and 250 peach trees. There is also an abundance of small fruits on the place, consisting of grapes, blackberries, raspberries, etc., etc. Among the improvements are an elegant stone house, containing seven rooms, with a good cellar, a large stone barn, 42x74 feet, stock stables, sheds and lots, corn cribs, smokehouse, etc., etc. Mr. Meyer devotes his attention chiefly to raising corn, hogs and cattle. He raises from 7,000 to 10,000 bushels of corn yearly, cuts from 30 to 40 acres of millet, 125 acres of hay, sows 25 to 30 acres of rye to pasturage, has 30 acres seeded down to timothy and clover, feeds from 60 to 80 head of cattle, keeps 125 fine grade cattle, 100 to 200 Poland-China hogs and 18 head of horses and mules. There are several quarries of limestone on the property, from which the rock used in the erection of Mr. M's fine residence and large barn was obtained. There is also a bank of excellent building sand on the farm. Along the entire north and west ends of the farm extends a row of stately cottonwoods. South of the dwelling is a handsome grove of native timber, which covers thirty acres and contains a great number of burr oak, black walnut, hickory, mulberry, elm and linden trees. Mr. Meyer is one of the old pioneers of this county, is an honorable and honest stock breeder, one of Brown's prosperous and prominent farmers and a good neighbor and citizen.

[Image of H. Monroe] HENRY MONROE, farmer, stock raiser and feeder, Section 32, Township 2, Range 15, P. O. Sabetha, Nemaha Co., was born in County Down, Ireland, July 12, 1823, and lived in his native country until May, 1851, when he immigrated to America, and located in McLean County, Ill., where he resided one year, thence he removed to Poweshiek County, Iowa, where he engaged in farming, and where he resided until May 13, 1856, when he became a resident of Kansas, locating on his farm in what is now Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has since resided. He is a member of Central City Lodge, No. 125, I. O. O. F. of Sabetha. He participated in the War of the Rebellion as a member of Company H, Twenty-second Regiment, Kansas Volunteer Militia, and enlisted at Seneca, Nemaha Co., in April, 1864, and was discharged at the same place, November 2, 1864. He was married in Poweshiek County, Iowa, December 27, 1855, to Miss Mary Laughlin, a native of Indiana. They have six children living - Emma, (married to Peter Jones, a native of Iowa, and a resident of Brown County); William, (married to Miss Elia Bruce, a native of Wisconsin); Cicely, (married to Charles Roker, a native of Iowa and a resident of Brown County); Eliza, (married to William Skinner, a native of Kansas, and a resident of Brown County); Henry and Joseph. Mr. Monroe owns a fine stock and grain farm of 640 acres, lying on the Delaware, in Walnut Township. It is divided into timber, bottom and upland, is enclosed by substantial fences and is in a high state of cultivation. The water supply is excellent and consists of wells, springs and Delaware River, which flows through one quarter of the farm. The orchard covers two acres and is well supplied with fruit trees of various varieties. There is also a handsome grove of native timber upon the property. The improvements are first-class in every particular. Among others are a comfortable and cozy frame dwelling, frame stock barn 32x35, stock shed and lots, two large granaries, etc. Mr. M. raises from 1,000 to 1,500 bushels of oats, 7,000 to 8,000 bushels of corn yearly, feeds 60 head of cattle, keeps 80 fine stock cattle, 150 stock hogs, 11 head of horses has 65 acres of clover and timothy seeded down and cuts form 70 to 80 acres of hay annually. In addition to his farm in Walnut, he also owns 160 acres in Powhattan Township, lying three miles south of the home farm. It has eighty acres in cultivation, the remainder being pasture land. Mr. Monroe is one of the early pioneers of this section of the State, is one of the extensive cattle raisers and feeders of Brown County, a prominent and prosperous farmer, a good and useful citizen, and possesses the esteem and confidence of his neighbors.

SAMUEL NYFELER, farmer and stock raiser, Section 9, Township 3, Range 15, P. O. Sabetha, Nemaha County, was born in Canton Berne, Switzerland, March 1, 1823, and lived in his native country until 1855, when he immigrated to America, first locating in Holmes County, Ohio, where he lived for four years, and was engaged in farming. In the spring of 1859, he became a citizen of Kansas, locating in the city of Leavenworth, where he lived for two years, and thence removed to Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has resided since. He is a member of the Evangelical Association. During the Price raid he served for two weeks in the Kansas Volunteer Militia. He was married in 1851, in Berne, Switzerland, to Miss Barbara Scharr, a native of Switzerland. They have seven children living - Samuel, a resident of Brown County, married Miss Emma Moseman, a native of Indiana; Mary, Caroline, married Joseph Robinson, a native of New Jersey, and a resident of Netawaka; Louisa, Edward, Henrietta and Charles. Mr. N. owns a fine upland farm of 240 acres surrounded by a handsome osage hedge and in a good state of cultivation. The farm is supplied with water by a number of excellent wells. The orchard covers one and a half acres, and contains 250 fruit trees of various varieties. The improvements are good, among others are a new and comfortable frame dwelling containing six rooms, new frame barn 34x42 feet, stock stables, granary, corn cribs, smoke house, etc. Mr. N. raises from 400 to 800 bushels of wheat yearly, 200 bushels of rye, 250 bushels of oats, 3,000 to 4,000 bushels of corn, feeds half a car load of cattle, keeps 35 fine stock cattle, 40 to 50 stock hogs and 11 head of horses. Mr. Nyfeler is an honest, upright and hard working farmer, a prominent, prosperous and useful citizen and stands high in his community.

ROBERT RHEA, farmer and stock raiser, southeast of Section 31, Township 2, Range 15, P. O. Sabetha, Nemaha County, was born in Christian County, Ky., July 11, 1827, but lived in his native State only until his eight year, his parents removing to Cooper County, Mo., where Mr. Rhea resided thirteen years. Thence he removed to Platte County in the same State, where he resided until the fall of 1854, when he became a resident of Kansas, locating near Woodlawn, Nemaha County, where he engaged in farming and where he resided two years. Thence he removed to Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has resided since. He is a member of Sabetha Lodge, No. 162, A., F & A. M., and was one of the charter members of this lodge. He was Constable of Walnut Township five years and a member of the Board of School District, No. 74, Brown County, three years. Mr. Rhea participated in the War of the rebellion as a member of Company H, (Capt. Aaron McGill), Twenty-second Regiment, Kansas Volunteer Militia, and was enlisted in April, 1864, at Seneca, Nemaha County, and dischargod (sic) at the same place November 2, 1864. Owing to the exposure and hardships he endured while in the service, Mr. Rhea contracted a disease from which he suffers to-day. He is also a veteran of the Mexican war, having enlisted in May, 1846, in Cooper County, Mo., in a company commander by Capt. Joseph L. Stevens in the Third Regiment, Missouri Volunteer Infantry. He served one year in this regiment and was discharged at Booneville, Mo., in May, 1847. He was married in Platte County, Mo., October 8, 1850, to Miss Elizabeth Magill, a native of Clay County, Mo. They have had nine children, seven of whom are living - Melissa (married to Richard Blodgett, a native of Ohio, and a resident of Nemaha County); Sallie M., Mary Frances (married to Marion Pringle, a native of Iowa, and a resident of Nemaha County); Florence E., Robert, Edward Morrill and Alonzo F. Mr. Rhea owns a fine upland farm on Grasshopper Creek, or Delware River, as it is now called. It contains 159 acres, is all surrounded by substantial fences, is in a good state of cultivation, and is well supplied with water, having wells, springs, and the river, which flows through the northeast corner of the farm. The orchard covers two acres and contains 100 apple, fifty peach, and a few Siberian crab trees. The improvements are fair and consist in part of a six-room frame dwelling, stock stable and lots, corn-cribs, etc. Near the house is a handsome grove of native timber. Mr. Rhea devotes his attention principally to raising corn, hogs and cattle. He raises from 3,000 to 4,000 bushels of corn yearly, keeps twenty-five to forty head of stock cattle, forty to fifty hogs, and four head of horses. Mr. Rhea is one of the old pioneers of Kansas, and honest and sturdy farmer and a useful and popular citizen. Pleasant Valley Schoolhouse, District No. 47, is built on what was once a portion of Mr. Reha's farm. It is a neat frame structure, was erect in 1880, and cost with furniture, etc. about $600. It has a seating capacity of forty, and is well furnished. The first and present school officers were and are: Robert Rhea, director; Charles Culverhoss, clerk, and Henry Monroe, treasurer. Ira B. Dye is the teacher at present in charge of the school.

F. J. ROBBINS, farmer and stock raiser, Section 20, Township 2, Range 16, P. O. Carson, was born in St. Charles County, Mo., February 28, 1827, where he resided until shortly after the breaking out of the Mexican war, when he became a member of Company B of the Oregon County Battalion of the Missouri Volunteer Cavalry, commanded by Col. Powell, enlisting in St. Charles County, Mo., in June, 1847, and being discharged at Fort Leavenworth in the fall of 1848, while his company was stationed at Fort Kearney. Mr. Robbins received severe injuries from which he suffers to-day. After his discharge from the United States service he returned to Andrew County, Mo., where he resided until May, 1855, when he became a resident of Kansas, locating in Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has resided since. He is a prominent member of the Congregational Church at Fairview and of Hamlin Lodge, No. 135, A., F. & A. M. He was married in Andrew County, Mo., in 1849, to Miss Martha A. Kersey, a native of Indiana, but for a long time a resident of Kentucky. They have seven children living whose names are - George W., Louisa, married to Irvin Hanson, a native of Maine and a resident of Brown County; B. Frank, a resident of Brown, married to Miss Eva B. Hatfield, a native of Kansas; Abbie, married to Henry Sewell, a native of Ohio and a resident of Brown County; Martha, William and Edward A. Mr. Robbins owns four fine farms in Walnut Township, which altogether comprise 567 acres. This magnificent estate is all enclosed with hedge, wire and board fences, is mostly in cultivation, and is well supplied with water. The home farm contains 240 acres, is in a high state of cultivation, and is well improved. There is a fine nine-roomed frame dwelling surrounded by evergreens, shrubbery and shade trees; stock stables, sheds and lots; granary, corn crib, etc., etc. North of the dwelling is a handsome maple grove. Mr. Robbins devotes his time chiefly to raising corn and hogs. He grows 5,000 to 6,000 bushels of corn yearly, keeps a dozen head of stock cattle, 75 to 100 Poland-China and Berkshire hogs, and 12 heads of horses. He is a veteran of the Mexican war, an old pioneer of Brown, a thorough farmer, a substantial citizen, and is highly esteemed in his neighborhood.

[Image of J. S. Tyler] J. S. TYLER, farmer, fruit and stock raiser, Section 4, Township 3, Range 15, P. O. Box fairview, was born in November, 1825, in Griswold, New London Co., Conn., and lived in his native State until his twenty-first year when he removed to near Debuque, Iowa, where he resided two years and was engaged in lead mining. Thence he went to New Orleans for the benefit of his health and where he resided one winter. He then moved to Harding, Calhoun Co., Ill., where he resided six years and was engaged in the lumber business and in farming. On the 11th day of April 1856, he became a resident of Kansas, locating on his farm in Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has resided since. He is a prominent and zealous member of the Baptist Church. He was Assessor of Brown County one term; Commissioner of the same county two terms and Postmaster of Tyler's Post Office ten years. He participated in the War of the rebellion, during the "Price raid," as a member of Capt. Colman's Company, Twenty-second Regiment, Kansas Volunteer Militia, and was enlisted in Nemaha County in the fall of 1864, served three weeks and was discharged at Kansas City. He was married in June, 1866, in the city of Leavenworth, to Miss Harriet Chase, a native of Maine. They have four children, whose names are - Augustus H., James C., Louis and John H. Deacon Tyler owns one, among the largest and most productive estates in Brown County. It contains 800 acres; is all enclosed by substantial fences, all in cultivation and well supplied with water by means of wells, springs and the Delaware River, which flows through the center of the farm. There is a large and thrifty orchard on the premises, which covers twelve acres and contains 1,200 fruit trees of various kinds. There is also a small vineyard on the farm. The property is well timbered, having eighty acres of elm, oak and walnut trees. The improvements are good and consist of a comfortable and cosy frame dwelling, containing eleven rooms, a frame barn 20x26, corn cribs, stock sheds and lots, etc., etc. Mr. T. devotes his attention chiefly to growing corn, fruit, cattle and hogs. He raises 3,000 to 4,000 bushels of corn; 1,000 to 1,500 bushels of apples; feeds two car-loads of cattle; keeps 100 head of stock cattle, 150 to 200 Chester White, Berkshire and Poland-China hogs and eight head of horses and mules. Deacon Tyler and his amiable and accomplished wife are among the old settlers of Kansas. They have grown up with the State and rejoice with all old pioneers in the present prosperity of the commonwealth. Mrs. Tyler taught the first public school in Brown County and subsequently taught a large public school composed of colored pupils in South Leavenworth. She was engaged as a teacher in the public schools of the State at various times for six years.

REZEN SEWELL, farmer and stock raiser, Section 22, Township 2, Range 15, P. O. Fairview, was born September 30, 1851, in Pike County, Ohio, and lived in his native State until the spring of 1859 when he became a resident of Kansas, locating in Walnut Township, Brown County, where he has resided since. He is a consistent and zealous member of the Congregational Church. Mr. Sewell's brother, Joseph Marion Sewell, was born in Benton County, Ind., August 28, 1853, and lived in his native Sate until the spring of 1867 when he came to Kansas, where he joined his fortunes with his brother Rezen. Like his brother he is a prominent member of the Congregational Church. The Sewell Brothers are the fortunate owners of "Bellevue" farm. It contains 350 acres and is undoubtedly one of the finest farms in the township. It is substantially enclosed, is in a good state of cultivation, and is well supplied with water, having wells, cisterns, and Spring creek flowing through the southest portion of the farm. The property has good improvements, among which are a five-roomed frame cottage, stock stables and sheds, granaries, corn cribs, smoke house, etc., etc. There is a young and thrifty orchard and abundance of small fruits of different varieties on the farm. They raise from 1,000 to 2,000 bushels of wheat, 200 to 300 bushels of rye, 500 to 600 bushels of oats, 5,000 to 6,000 bushels of corn yearly; feed a car load of cattle, keep 60 to 75 grade cattle, 200 Poland-China hogs, and a dozen head of horses and mules; and have 100 acres of their farm seeded down in timothy and clover. The Messrs. Sewell had but limited means when they came to Kansas, but now, by their industry, intelligence, economy and pluck (sic) have made a handsome competency in Brown County, of which they speak in the highest terms. They are honorable, upright men, and good and useful citizens.

MRS. SARAH SMITH, widow of Isaac R. Smith, farmer, Section 5, Township 3, Range 15, P. O. Fairview. Mr. Smith was born in Indiana in 1824, but left his native State at an early age. His mother, after the death of his father, removing to McLean County, Ill., where Mr. S. resided until the fall of 1857, when he became a resident of Kansas, locating in Robinson Township, Brown County, where he lived about five years and was engaged in farming. Thence he removed to near Frankfort, Marshall County, where he resided until August 27, 1862, when he entered the Union Army as a member of Company G, Thirteenth Regiment, Kansas Volunteer Infantry, enlisting at Marysville, Kan., and being discharged for disability contracted while in the United States service, and which subsequently caused his death, March 19, 1863, at Springfield, Mo. After his discharge he returned to his home in Marshall County where he resided until his death, January 8, 1864. He was a brave and faithful soldier and died in his fortieth year. He participated in the battle of Prairie Grove. He was a consistent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mrs. S.'s maiden name was Foster, a native of Indiana and was married to Mr. Smith in 1846, in McLean County, Ill. They had ten children, eight of whom are living and whose names are: Elizabeth, married to George Mize, a native of Kentucky and a resident of Brown County; Harriet, married to Herman Schubert, a native of Wisconsin, and a resident of Brown County; Susan, married to Augustus Albright, a native of Germany, and a resident of Marshall County; Margaret, married to Aaron Houts, a native of Indiana and a resident of Dakota Territory; Eli, a resident of Marshall County, married to Miss Salma Schubert, a native of Indiana; Robert, a resident of Saline County, married to Miss Ruth Nichols, a native of Indiana; Abraham Lincoln, a resident of Brown County, married to Miss Belle Morrison, a native of Kansas; and Isaac R., Jr. Mrs. Smith owns a nice little bottom farm of forty acres. It is all enclosed with substantial fences; is in a good state of cultivation and the supply of water is unequaled. There is a young and thrifty orchard on the property containing 150 apple, 100 peach and a number of cherry and plum trees. The improvements are good and consist among others, of a new and comfortable frame dwelling, stock stable and lots, etc. Mrs. S. is assisted in her farming operations by her sons. Attention on this farm is given principally to raising corn and hogs; 1,000 bushels of corn are grown annually, and a couple of dozen of stock hogs and four head of horses are kept.

W. A. WAGONER, farmer, P. O. Capioma, was born in 1847, in Knox County, Ohio; reared on the paternal farm; educated in Frederick, and enlisted from school in 1861, as a private in the Eighty-first Ohio. With the alert and able Sherman, he with his regiment fought at Shiloh, Iuka, Corinth, about Vicksburg, at Jackson, Miss., and all through the Atlanta campaign. While on the way to Savannah his time expired and on the capitulation of that city he returned to his Ohio home for a time, but during 1865 he came to Kansas. He settled on his present fine 360 acre farm in 1872. Has erected a large and substantial farm house, planted hedges, orchard and forest timbers, thus laying foundations that will eventually secure him a life of peach and plenty. He married Miss Hannah A. Dissette, a native of Kingston, Canada, and their two children, Joseph and Mabel, were both born in Kansas.

[TOC] [part 23] [part 21] [Cutler's History]