CAROLYN NEWCOMB and JOHN MATTHEWS produced this selection.

William G. Cutler's History of the State of Kansas
was first published in 1883 by A. T. Andreas, Chicago, IL.


PART 1: Location and Natural Features | Map and Population | Township History | War Record
PART 2: County Organization and Elections | County Buildings and Granges | School and Other Statistics | Cottonwood Falls
PART 3: Biographical Sketches (Alexander - Jones)
PART 4: Biographical Sketches (Kinne - Young)
PART 5: Strong City
PART 6: Falls Township | Diamond Creek Township
PART 7: Cottonwood Township
PART 8: Bazaar Township
PART 9: Toledo Township


Chase County, named after Salmon P. Chase, who was United States Senator from, and Governor of, Ohio, and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, was organized in 1859. It was south and west of the center of population of Kansas in 1875, and in 1880 this center had moved some distance west of it. The northern boundary of the county is 102 miles south of the Nebraska line; its eastern line, 96 miles from the State of Missouri; its southern boundary, 75 miles from the Indian Territory; and its western boundary, 285 miles from the State of Colorado. Between it and Missouri there are four counties; there are six organized counties on the line west of it. Its area is about 750 square miles. The Cottonwood River flows through the county in a general northeasterly and easterly direction, emptying into the Neosho, in Lyon County. The valley of this river ranges from one to three miles in width; its soil is chiefly a dark friable loam, varying from five to twenty-five feet deep, the accumulation of the decayed vegetation of ages. The river has high steep banks, and it has a fall of from five to eight feet in every half a dozen miles, thus making a series of good water-powers.

The limits of the river valley are most clearly defined by lines of bluffs or low and rounded sloping hills on either side, out of which crop ledges of magnesian limestone. The land is very rolling above the line of bluffs, and in many places it is broken by the ledges of stone that come out to the surface. Lying between the hills are swells of greater or less dimensions, that possess the elements of great fertility. The Cottonwood has numerous tributaries; the principal streams flowing into it from the north being French, Silver, Middle, Diamond, Fox, Peyton and Buckeye, the general course of which is southeast; from the south are Jacobs, Bloody, South Fork Rock, Spring, Corn Branch, Coon and Cedar, whose general course is north. The hear-waters of the Verdigris are in the southeastern part of the county; the stream runs southeasterly into Lyon and Greenwood and empties into the Neosho. In the northeast part of the county is Canola Creek; it passes through the southeast corner of Marion and empties into the Neosho, in the southwest corner of Lyon County. There are branches of all these tributaries fed by abounding springs of living water, and this network of running waters, great and small, give to this county the justly earned reputation of being one of the finest watered portions of the State of Kansas. These branches of the Cottonwood possess rich, fertile valleys, varying from half a mile to a mile in width. The valleys are mostly on the west and north side of the streams; on the south and east the land usually rises abruptly to a summit, then gradually descends southwardly and eastwardly to the adjacent valley and stream. About 15 per cent of the county is valley land; 50 per cent, good tillable, undulating prairie, and 35 per cent of a bluffy character. Good well water can be obtained at a depth of about twenty-five feet.

The streams are well skirted with timber, but the average width of the belt is less than one half a mile; the forest land of the county is estimated at 5 per cent. Cottonwood, hackberry, sycamore, hickory, walnut, and burr oak are the prevailing kinds of timber.

The soil is generally quite strongly impregnated with lime; the subsoil is of a clayish cast, but in the western part of the county, there is a smaller percentage of lime in the soil, and the subsoil is more porous. Building stone exists in great quantities, and it is of a most excellent quality. The west of the State house is built of it. It is seen in the public and private buildings at Leavenworth, Kansas City and in many of the principal towns along the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad and its branches. Good brick clay is found in the valley of the Cottonwood. The grasses growing from this soil are superior in their qualities for fattening stock, and the sheltered sides of the bluffs, the nooks at the head of the valleys, with the abounding timber, with artificial shelters, make this a peculiarly good county for raising and fattening of cattle.

There is comparatively no stagnant water in the county, nor swampy lands, and with the high altitude of the country, there is a great freedom from malaria. The winters are usually short, the spring opens early, and the autumn days are balmy, breathing an atmosphere of great purity with healing in its wings.



                                        | 1870. | 1880.
Bazaar Township........................ |   364 | 1,096
Cottonwood Township.................... |   315 | 1,139
Diamond Creek Township................. |   469 |   994
Falls Township,                         |       |
   including Cottonwood City and        |       |
   Cottonwood Falls City                |   459 | 1,871
Toledo Township........................ |   368 |   981
          Total........................ | 1,975 | 6,081
Cottonwood City........................ |  .... |   324
Cottonwood Falls City.................. |  .... |   518


March 24, 1860, Toledo and Diamond Creek townships were created, and the 750 square miles of Chase county are comprised in five municipal townships. Diamond Creek is in the northwest part of the county, Falls, in the north central; Toledo, in the northeast and eastern; Bazaar, in the southeast and south central; Cottonwood, in the southwestern. The two cities in the county are in Falls Township, Cottonwood Falls and Strong City. The County Commissioners' districts are as follows: First district, Toledo and Bazaar; Second, Falls; Third, Cottonwood and Diamond Creek.

Toledo.-- The area of this township is 188 square miles. Safford and Elinor, stations on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad, are its principal villages. Safford is two miles from the Lyon County line, and Elinor is three miles west of Safford. J. F. Gill is the station agent and L. P. Ravenscroft is the physician at Safford. It is located on the northeast quarter of Section 15, Township 19, Range 9. It contained 537,100 acres January 5, 1875. In June, 1856, Nathan Cory, Daniel Holsinger and Gabriel Jacobs settled in the township. Mr. Pine and Jane Wentworth of this township were married in 1857. George Holsinger was born in this township in 1857. O. Thompson started the first general store at Toledo. It was in 1859. John Buchanan was the first postmaster. The office was established in 1858.

In 1863, the Friends erected a house of worship, on the southwest corner of the southeast quarter of Section 2, Township 19, Range 9. Their church was organized in 1859. Schools were kept in private houses in this township; its first schoolhouse was built in 1864, school district No. 9. The town site of Toledo was abandoned January 2, 1865. Here is a general store, and a blacksmith shop and a physician.

Bazaar.-- This township has an area of 178 square miles. Some families from Illinois settled here in 1857, among whom were Dr. M. R. Leonard, J. Lane and Barnard McCabe. The wife of Dr. Leonard died in 1859, and John Sharp of this township died in 1860. The first postmaster of Bazaar, in 1860, was George Leonard. Streckle & Co. started a general store in 1870. Its first school building was built of logs. It was erected in district No. 7, in 1860. The Methodists erected their first church building in 1864. Bazaar, Berley, Morgan and Thurman are country post-offices; Matfield Green has two general stores, a blacksmith shop, and a good water flouring-mill. Henry Brandley from this township, has been Representative, Senator, and Secretary of the State Senate.

Cottonwood.-- This township contains 180 square miles. Homestead and Wonsevu are country post-offices, located in the limits. Cedar Point is situated one half mile south of Cedar Grove Station on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad, which is the westernmost one in the county. At the Point there are two general stores, a blacksmith shop, and here Drinkwater & Schriver have one of the best water grist-mills in the county. The proprietors of Cedar Point are Orlo H. Drinkwater, Peter Schriver, A. B. Emerson, Henry Weaver, Philip Frank, Richard O'Neil, and Sumner L. Roberts. The location is on the northwest quarter of the northwest quarter of section 6, Township 21, Range 6, and the northeast quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 1, Township 21, Range 5.

J. W. Byrom is the station agent at Cedar Grove, and J. W. Cope is the agent at Crawfordsville, which is six miles east of Cedar Grove. Joseph L. Crawford laid out this place, February 25, 1882, on the northwest quarter of Section 23, Township 20, Range 6. This place has two stores, and it has absorbed what has been known as "Hunt's." M. Coyne settled in this township in 1857; the first birth here was December 25, 1857, Lafayette Hawkins. Mr. Fratchet opened a grocery store in 1859. O. H. Drinkwater was postmaster at Cedar Point in 1862; school district No. 3 was formed here in 1863, and the Methodist Episcopal Church, a house of worship in 1876.

Diamond Creek embraces Townships 18 and 19, of Ranges 6 and 7. Hymer, Woodhull, and Elk are country post-offices; at Elk is a blacksmith shop. Elmdale is located on a part of Section 27, Township 19, Range 7. Stephen M. Wood is President of the Town Company. He has been a Representative and Senator, and is now the President of the Board of Regents, of the State Agricultural College. A. Seaton is the station agent, and the hamlet is a neat little town containing a hotel, a drug store, a hardware store, three general stores, two blacksmith shops, a saw and grist-mill, a loan agent, a nice passenger depot, post-office, church and school house. The town is about four miles due west of Cottonwood Falls. The main street running east and west has a thrifty, beautiful appearance. In 1854, Seth Hayes, an Indian trader at Council Grove, located a stock ranch on the Cottonwood, near the mouth of Diamond Spring Creek. School district No. 1, was formed in this township in 1865; Samuel Beverlin, Probate Judge of the county, was postmaster at Middle Creek, now Elmdale, in 1866; William Jeffrey & Son opened a general store in 1872, at Elmdale.

Falls contains an area of 110 square miles. The towns are Cottonwood Falls and Strong, which are a little over one mile apart, and are the objective points of the county. James Fisher, a single man from Columbiana County, Ohio, was the first settler in the county. He located on the southwest quarter of Section 26, Township 19, Range 8, in 1855, and in 1873 was robbed and murdered at his own house, by Martin Goss. For the commission of this crime, Goss had a sentence to the penitentiary for twenty-one years. Susan Borders, the daughter of Christopher Borders, was born near Cottonwood Falls, in 1858. She was the first child born in the county. The family soon moved to Missouri. In December, 1858, Sidney A. Breese settled in what became Cottonwood Falls; the oldest living settler. He was one of the county organizers, the first Assessor, Register of Deeds, and County Attorney of the county. He has been Clerk of the District Court, and he entered upon the duties of the office of County Clerk in January, 1870, and his seventh term closes in January, 1884. J. S. Doolittle has been County Commissioner, Clerk of the District Court, County Treasurer and Representative. J. B. Smith has been County Treasurer, Commissioner, Assessor and Probate Judge. A. P. Gandy has been County Treasurer, County Clerk and Register of Deeds. A. S. Williams has been Commissioner and Sheriff. W. S. Romigh has been County Attorney, Surveyor and County Clerk. A. S. Howard has been Superintendent of Public Instruction, District Attorney, County Clerk, Probate Judge and County Treasurer. J. S. Shipman has been Clerk of the District Court, County Superintendent and County Treasurer. E. A. Alford has been County Commissioner and County Treasurer. D. F. Drinkwater has been Assessor and Clerk of the District Court. O. H. Drinkwater has been Commissioner and Representative. F. B. Hunt has been County Attorney and Superintendent. H. E. Snyder has been Assessor and County Commissioner. M. R. Leonard has been Clerk of the District Court, Representative and Senator. H. L. Hunt has been Commissioner and Senator. C. C. Whitson has been twelve years Probate Judge; Miss Mary E. Hunt, six years Superintendent of Public Instruction; Samuel Buchanan, four years County Treasurer. S. N. Wood has been Commissioner, Superintendent of Public Instruction, County Attorney, District Judge, Representative and Senator. Among the earliest settlers in Falls Township were James Fisher, Milton Ford and A. P. Wentworth, who came in 1857. C. S. Hills was the postmaster at Cottonwood Falls, in 1858; L. D. Hinckley opened a grocery store here in 1859; school district No. 6 was organized here in 1862; the Congregational Church in 1870; the Methodist Episcopal, in 1871. The mention made of county officers in connection with the history of this township, has been because of their necessary residence therein. As a matter of fact, since 1872, there has not been a county warrant, township order or bond of any kind that was not paid at maturity.

The receipts from the magnificent stone quarries of Falls Township are rapidly increasing from year to year. There is no county in Kansas where the wealth per capita is greater than in Chase County. J. S. Shipman, the proprietor of the Osage mill, which is situated on the Cottonwood, near Elmsdale, who manufactures the "Wife's Choice," and "Guilt Edge," brands of flour, and entered upon his second term as County Treasurer in October, 1882, has twenty two persons upon his Treasurer's bond, among whom are a dozen names good for over $1,000,000. Chase County has a good climate, a good soil, a good range, excellent public buildings, and an active, cultured and progressive people.


Probably no county in the United States of America could show that 27 per cent of its voting population enlisted in 1861, except this one of Chase. Here were seventy volunteers out of a body of 262 voters. In Company 1, of the second Kansas Infantry, Samuel N. Wood was mustered in a Captain June 20, 1861, and was afterwards transferred to Fremont's Battalion. In "New Company B," of the Ninth Kansas, Henry Brandley was mustered out as Captain, July 17, 1865, at Duvall's Bluff, Arkansas. Charles S. Hills was mustered in as Captain of Company D, of the Tenth Kansas, May 11, 1862, assigned to Company A, and made Lieutenant Colonel, March, 1, 1865. Of the Kansas State Militia, S. N. Wood was commissioned Brigadier-General February 29, 1864; William S. Smith, of Cottonwood Falls, was commissioned Colonel of the Eighth Regiment, July 4, 1864; A. S. Howard, Captain of Company B, January 18, 1864; H. E. Snyder, First Lieutenant, same date; H. L. Hunt, Second Lieutenant, September 16, 1863. In Company F, H. H. Doolittle was commissioned Captain November 11, 1863; George W. Williams, March 17, 1863; M. R. Leonard, November 25, 1863; Asa Taylor, Second Lieutenant, November 11, 1863.

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