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


[TOC] [part 11] [part 9] [Cutler's History]


A. G. PATRICK, postmaster, Valley Falls, Kansas, is a well-known citizen of Jefferson County. His father, Ebenezer Patrick, was native of Windsor, Vermont,, and was a printer by trade. Emigrated to Indiana in 1816. For a number of years published a paper at Salem, Indiana. Afterwards, editor of the Madison Banner. Connected himself with the Indiana Methodist Conference in 1835, continuing in that connection up to his death in Princeton in 1844. A. G. Patrick, the subject of this sketch, could set type at a very early age, leaving home in 1840, serving a regular apprenticeship at the trade in Terre Haute, Indiana. He went to Louisville, Kentucky, in the fall of 1842, and secured a situation in the Gazette office, a Tyler paper, published by JAmes Birney Marshall. At that time Godfrey Pope was publishing a Democratic and George D. Prentice a Whig paper in that city. In January, 1843, Messrs. Marshall and Pope consolidated their papers in one. Mr. Patrick retaining his situation in the new concern. In February the hands stuck for their wages, and after holding our for a week, were forced to accept for their work materials sufficient to start a small daily paper, and the Louisville Daily Dime, by an association of printers, first made its appearance in March. George D. Prentice, then editor of the Journal, loaned the men two bundles of paper, from which the first numbers of the Dime were issued. The enterprise met with considerable encouragement, starting out with a daily circulation of 1,000, and a fair share of advertising. Three of the firm sold their interests to the others, and the purchase, as well as a weekly installment of $25 for new material, made the dividends, for a number of weeks, less than $1 to the share. Mr. Patrick acted as pressman, taking his meals at the various lunch houses of the city. W. N. Haldman, then conduction a literary depot on Main street, bough an interest in the paper, and eventually acquired the entire establishment, changing the name of the paper to the Daily Courier. The Courier in time absorbed the Journal, and is now called the Courier-Journal. Mr. Patrick, realizing little or nothing for his interested, started for Bowling Green, Kentucky, where he procured a situation on the Greene River Gazette, then published by Alexander R. Macy, in whose employ he remained until the fall of 1844. Around Bowling Green the belief was general that Clay would be elected president. Merchants sold goods, farms changed hands, and business generally transacted, notes given payable in that event. Patrick was imbued with the same belief, the Louisville Journal being his "Bible" and guide. A few weeks before the election, with $200 in his pockets, he started to Indiana with a view to get an even bet, and double his money. He soon found the looked-for Democrat, stakes up, and awaited the result. Clay lost, and Patrick was again a strapped jour-printer. He vowed then he would ever afterwards read all sides. Politically, he has been on "every side of the fence since" - first an old line Whig, then a Know-nothing, an Abolitionist, a Democrat, now a Republican, with strong Greenback leanings. In 1846 Mr. Patrick was induced to take hold of a paper at Greencastle, Indiana, but owing to a lack of promised assistance was forced to suspend after five issues. He then worked at his trade in different parts of the State until 1848. When, in connection with his brother, he began merchandising in Bainbridge, Indiana. That winter he decided to go to California, and joined a company in Greencastle that departed for the Eldorado in the spring of 1849, arriving at Hangtown (Placerville), Sept. 3 of that year. Left San Francisco for New York in the spring of 1852. During the campaign of that year between Scott and Pierce, he was again induced to start a Whig paper at Greencastle, Indiana, called the Republican Banner. By dint of perseverance and hard work, he succeeded in putting his paper on a permanent basis. At the breaking up of the old Whig Party, he drifted into native Americanism, and after the convention of 1855 supported Fillmore as the regular nominee. Not liking the political issues of the day, he sold his paper and moved to Kansas, arriving at Leavenworth February 12, 1856, where he soon allied himself with the Free- state party. he continued an active an consistent member of that until the ill-will of the Pro-slavery men of Leavenworth. In a contest for a seat in the council between C. F. Currier, Free-state, and Beck, Pro-slavery, he caught Dick Murphy robbing and stuffing the ballot-box, an account of which he sent to an Indiana paper. Finding his way back to Leavenworth, the Herald published garbled extracts from the article, and advised the law and order men to watch him as an emigrant aid hireling. He procured a claim four miles southwest of Leavenworth, on which he built a small frame house and enclosed a few acres of ground. The summer of 1856 he was taken prisoner by **ed Emory's company, who delivered him to Captain Miller, it being understood that Miller's men would hang him at the head of Salt Creek. The Free-state men of Leavenworth were told that such was his fate, and New York and Indiana papers contained full accounts of the outrage. But Capt. Miller was under obligations to Mr. Patrick, and when he saw the intended victim, instead of suffering his men to carry out the design, he put a double guard of his own selecting, telling them to permit no hair of Patrick's head to be harmed. The next day Capt. Miller delivered the prisoner to Major Richardson at Upper Stranger Creek Crossing, five miles above Easton; Richardson was there on his way to Lecompton with about 800 men. On the following day Mr. Patrick was court-marshaled, and ordered to be shot as a spy. His principal accusers were Easton, Lyle, and Murphy, of Leavenworth. The execution was to have been summary, and no defense allowed. He was placed on the open prairie before twelve picked men, and realizing his situation, concluded to try the virtue of a Free Mason's sign of distress. It had its desired effect. Two days afterward he was delivered to Gov. Woodson at Lecompton. While there, was guarded by some impressed Free-state men under a man called "Tennessee" at whose house the prisoners, a half dozen in number, were boarded. Lecompton was full of Pro-slavery militia. Gen. Lane, with about an equal force, showed himself on the hill southeast of town. U. S. troops interfered to prevent bloodshed, and a compromise was effected, and Lane and his men returned to Lawrence. the next day, while the prisoners were being taken from the guard house to dinner, passing a company of Pro-slavery militia, Jim Lyle, who had a personal feeling against Patrick, offered twenty- five dollars to any one who would shoot the "abolitionist." One of the number raised his riffle and took aim, but the cap snapped. This act highly incensed the guard, "old Tennessee" (real name Caldwell), who, after seeing the prisoners to his house, immediately repaired to Gov. Woodson's quarters, and informed him of the outrage.

The governor, in company with the United States Marshal Donaldson, put in their appearance, remonstrating with the ruffians, and escorted in person the prisoners back to the guard house. Application was then made by the prisoners to Capt. Newby, who sent them to Lawrence under an escort of United States dragoons. The next day Patrick joined Capt. Wright's Stranger Creek Company, as was soon on the road to Hickory Point, Jefferson County, and participated in the engagement at that place September 13, 1856. That night, in company with a hundred others, he was captured by United States troops and marched off to Lecompton, where they were held by Gov. Geary, and indicted for murder by the territorial courts. Twenty of those first tried were sentenced to five years' imprisonment in the penitentiary, by Judge Lecompte's court, the balance took a change of venue before Judge Cato, of Tecumseh. Before trial all but Patrick and thirteen others broke jail and escaped; he and others that remained were acquitted December 4, 1856. He had resolved to leave the territory, but the river being frozen over, and not desiring to pass through Missouri, he located at Grasshopper Falls, December 15, since which time he has called that place his home.

At the Free-state election for officers in the summer of 1857 in the summer of 1857, under the Topeka movement, he was elected Clerk of the Supreme Court. In the fall of 1857 he was elected a member of the Council in the first Free- state legislature, from the counties of Jefferson and Jackson, and served two years. The spring of 1859 he started for Pike's Peak, but having little confidence in Colorado as good placer diggings, he returned. after prospecting a month, to the Falls. The spring of 1860 he again started for the mountains, stopping at the head of the Arkansas River, an was engaged in mining and prospecting for nearly two years. At the beginning of the war was in California Gulch, 150 miles southwest of Denver, and could not join the army. At the organizations of Kearney's Militia, in 1862, he was elected Captain of one of the Grasshopper companies. In the spring of 1863 he started for Montana, remaining there two years. The winter of 1866 found him at Irving, Marshall County, Kan. Anticipating the erection of a considerable city where the Central Branch Railroad would cross the Blue River, he made an investment, opened a real estate office, and was elected Justice of the Peace. In the fall of 1867 was elected to the Legislature from Marshall County. The Irving speculation proved a failure, and he left the place in the fall of 1868. In the fall of 1869 he was elected Clerk of Jefferson County, serving two years. The spring of 1872 he commenced improving a farm six and a half miles from the Falls, and was married in October of that year to Miss Mary Frazier, daughter of James Frazier, one of the original proprietors of the Falls. He remained on this farm until the fall of 1877, at which time he sold out, buying the New Era printing establishment, determining once more to embark in the printing business. Two weeks after the sale of the farm and the purchase of the office, he met with the sad loss of his wife by death. One year from the date of purchasing the New Era, he sold out. In December, 1878, Mr. Patrick was again married, to Miss Eliza Dickey, and up to the time of his appointment as Postmaster, was engaged in stock-raising adjacent to the Falls. He connected himself with the Masonic Fraternity in Terra Haute, Ind., in 1846. Mr. Patrick is no speaker, but a good talker and ready writer, not only on political matters, but on any of the important events of the day. While editor of the New Era he wrote up many interesting incidents, reminiscences, etc. To him the compilers of this history are under great obligations for much information relating to Jefferson County. Personally, Mr. Patrick is sociable and agreeable. He never lacks for warm personal and political friends.

J. M. PIAZZEK, miller, is a native of Poland, and was born February 28, 1834. Came to the United States in 1854, residing temporarily in Ohio and Kentucky, and came to Kansas the spring of 1855, arriving in Grasshopper Falls, April 5. At that time James Frazier, Isaac Cody and Robert Riddle were engaged in constructing a saw-mill, employing several men and wanted more help. Mr. P. wanted employment, as his exchequer was limited to twenty-five cents, and it took but a short time to make a bargain. He turned in, went to work, husbanded his earnings, and in a short time had an interest in the business, and as years went on he became sole proprietor (a sketch of his manufacturing industries is given in the manufacturing interests of the county). Mr. PIAZZEK is largely interested in real estate in Kansas and stands among the substantial men of the State. His career is a fair illustration of what can be accomplished where there is a will to execute. His success he attributes to untiring industry. He was married in 1862 to Miss Melinda Menier, of Ohio. They have two children--Lee Forest and Minnie. He is a Royal Arch Mason.

GEORGE E. REPPERT, farmer, Section 14, P. O. Valley Falls, is a native of Pennsylvania, and was born in Greene County, February 21, 1837. He came to Kansas with his parents in 1856, his father, George A. Reppert, being among the very first settlers and farm-openers, in this portion of the county. He was a strong Free-state man of decided opinions, and it is needless to state he had difficulties to contend with. He did not live but a short time after coming to the Sate, not being able to stand the hardships. His death occurred in Leavenworth County. His wife, Mrs. Ann Reppert, died a few year ago. The subject of this sketch has been a continuous resident and has contributed amply towards the development of the county. He was married in Kansas to Miss Isabelle Pettit. They have seven children--Frank, Kate, Louis, Annie, Bennie, Mabel, Roy.

A. M. RUSSELL school teacher, is a native of Ohio and was born in Geauga County, April 7, 1847. When five years of age removed with his parents to Cedar County, Iowa, where he was educated and reared. In 1862 he enlisted in Company I, Thirty-fifth Iowa Volunteer Infantry. He was in eighteen general engagements, and thirty-seven skirmishes, rendering valuable services as a scout a portion of the time. One one occasion he was two and a half days in a rebel camp, successfully making his escape. On the 3rd of January, 1863, was sounded at Pocahontas, Tenn., served through until the close, when he was honorably discharged. He came to Kansas in the spring of 1873, locating at Perry, where he taught school for several terms; was also connected with the Perry Times and interested in jewelry, a branch of trade he is conversant with. In 1880, came to Valley Falls, where he has since been teaching. Mr. Russell was married February 19, 1870, in Cedar County, Iowa, to Miss Martha Counts, a native of that State. They have five children--Rosetta A., Emma C., B. M., Mary A., Nellie M., and Dick C. M. He is a member of ten different lodges and orders--I. O. G. T., S. of T., G. A. R. S. of M., I. O. O. F., S. of I., P. of H., F & A. M., A. O. of U. W., U. O. of A. T.

CHALMERS SCOTT, farmer, Section 6, P. O. Valley Falls, was born in Philadelphia, Pa, where he served an apprenticeship at machine making and engineering. For several years after he followed the seas, being part of the time in the employ of the Cunards on the station between New York and the West Indies. At the commencement of the Kansas excitement he left New York in the spring of 1855 (April) for Kansas, and promptly identified himself with the Free-state party. He was commissioned Captain of a company of militia by Gov. Robinson. He was at Lawrence in 1856 with his company and helped to fortify it with old John Brown and others of the old guard, at the time they expected an attack from the Border Ruffians under Price and Stringfellow. Capt. Scott was stationed with his company, by Col. Jim Lane, in Fort Dickey on the right flank of Massachusetts street. Mr. Scott was always outspoken in the cause of freedom, and few men in the dark days of Kansas, took a more active part in securing to her the blessings of freedom, without pay or hope of reward, other than the consciousness of duty done. He located a claim near Grasshopper Falls, and worked for the Town Company and helped in building a saw-mill on the creek for them, after which he went to improving his claim. At the breaking out of the rebellion he went East with the desire of entering the navy as engineer, and received an appointment as their assistant. This appointment he declined, as he had sailed as chief, and entered the army at Hamilton, Ohio, where he was placed at the head of the Tool Department. After the close of the war he was employed as engineer an Superintendent of the Hamilton Gas Works, which position he held for four years, when having a difficulty with the directors in regard to employing cheap labor he resigned and returned to his old love, beautiful Kansas, in 1875. His present farm and home he purchased in 1857, but did not locate on it until 1880. Mr. Scott has been twice married, first to Miss Caroline Garvan, of Philadephia, second to Miss Catherine Mayhew, a direct lineal descendant of Mayhew of Martha's Vineyard, one of the first missionaries among the Indians in Colonial times. He has one son from the first union, Phillip G., and one daughter from the second union, Sara Lea Balteaux. He was the first Constable elected at Grasshopper, and served as Clerk at the first election ever held there. He was tendered the first nomination for Senator and also the first for delegate to the Constitutional Convention, both of which he declined.

JOHN SILLS, farmer, Section 18, P. O. Valley Falls, is a native of England and was born in Nottinghamshire, August 29, 1833. Came to the United States in 1849, settling in Wisconsin, afterwards to Illinois; pursuing the vocation of plastering. Eventually in 1855 came to Kansas and made a claim where he now resides, he erected a cabin and commenced pioneering it through up to September 11, 1862. Mr. Sills enlisted in Company I, Eleventh Kansas Volunteer Infantry. He followed after Price on his raid; was at the Cain Hill, Prairie Grove, and other engagements afterwards, in the West after the indians, where he had some close calls. Served until the close of the war, when he was honorably discharged. He has since been engaged in agricultural pursuits. Hew was married in Illinois to Miss Henrietta Cain. They have six children--Sarah J., Mary L., George F., Warren E., Clarissa A., and William J.

R. D. SIMPSON, hotel proprietor, is a native of Kentucky, and was born in Madison County, May 24, 1838. When he was quite young his father, Duke W. Simpson, emigrated to Missouri with his family, locating at Westport, which was then in its infancy. He was a man of some means, possessed of business qualifications, and was enterprising and ambitious. He was the first to inaugurate the Santa Fe trade, and was soon largely engaged in merchandising, being in the front ranks of commercial circles. He was prominently identified officially, figuring actively in public life up to the time of his death. R. D. received the benefits of a good education and did business for his father, a few years after which he went to Nebraska City and entered the employ of Russell, Majors & Waddells, the famous Government freighters. Mr. Simpson was thoroughly conversant with the freighting business, and in the capacity of wagon master was in their employ for several years, having a varied experience of adventures incidental to a life on the western plains at that day. When the U. P. R. R. was being constructed, he was engaged in contracting in the West, furnishing a large number of the ties and bridge timbers. Of latter years he has made his home in Kansas. He was married in 1860 to Miss M. A. Majors, daughter of Alex Majors the Government freighter. Mrs. S's death occurred in Jackson County, Mo, in 1876. By this marriage he has three children living-- Susan A., Amanda C., and Richard D., Jr. In May, 1879, Miss Elizabeth C. Fuller, of Kansas, became his wife. In 1875 he was Deputy Sheriff of Jefferson County. For four years was City Marshal of Valley Falls, and at present, 1882, is Police Judge. For the past few years he has been the genial host of the French Hotel, and as landlord, like anything else he undertakes, he is a success. He is a member of the Masonic Fraternity.

I. SOUTHWARD, lumber dealer, is a native of England, and was born in Whitehaven, December 2, 1837, was there educated and reared. For eight years was in the employ of the British Government. In 1867 came to the United States, and to Jefferson County, Kas., locating at Valley Falls; he purchased a farm and turned his attention to school teaching for a few years. For a term was Deputy County Treasurer, and in 1875 was elected treasurer by the Reform Party, and re-elected in 1877, after which he served his successor as Deputy. Mr. Southward is one of the substantial citizens of the county. He was married in 1857 to Miss Jessie Hughn, a native of Scotland. He is at present Deputy County Surveyor and Notary Public.

ROBERT N. UTZ, farmer, Section 27, P. O. Valley Falls, is a native of Kentucky, and was born in Boone County, October 19, 1831; was educated and reared in his native State. In 1859 he came to Kansas, taking up his abode in Jefferson County, where he has since been a resident, closely adhering to agricultural pursuits. His wife was formerly Miss Susan Coffman. They have seven children--Mary, Harvey, Olive, Edwin, Carrie, Arthur, and Irbie. Mrs. Utz's father, Mr. Coffman, settled in that part of Jefferson County where the subject of this sketch resides in 1855. He was prominently identified and well known among the pioneers for a number of years. His death occurred in 1864.

J. VANDRUFF, farmer and stock-raiser, Section 24, P. O. Valley Falls, is a native of Pennsylvania, and was born in Greene County, March 31, 1837; was there reared and learned the carpenter's trade. Early in life he engaged in stock-driving between Chicago and Philadelphia. In 1857 he came to Kansas, locating at Valley Falls; worked at his trade as contractor and carpenter for a number of years, erecting a number of the first buildings. For a number of years he has been engaged in agricultural pursuits. During the war he was a member of the State militia. He was married, in 1863, to Miss Mary Lynch, of Indiana. They have had six children--William H., Maria F., George H., Melissa A., Lucius M., and lost one, Marian. Mr. V. is a member of the I. O. O. F., Crescent Lodge, No. 86.

GEORGE VAN GASSBECK, farmer, Section 24, P. O. Valley Falls, is a native of New York, and was born in Tompkins County, February 4, 1816. His father, Peter Van Gassbeck, was native of Ulster County, N. Y. His mother was Phoebe Dunham. The Van Gassbecks are of Holland extraction. In 1830 the family came West, locating in Ashtabula County, Ohio, where the subject resided until 1850, when he emigrated to Dane County, Wis., there residing until 1856, and on the 4th of July of that year, located in Kansas, being one among the first in the portion of Jefferson County he resides in, where he has been closely identified. For twelve years of his life, Mr. Van G. pursued the vocation of school-teaching, and takes a live interest in educational affairs. In 1865 and 1866, was Representative in the State Legislature. Politically he is a staunch Republican; advocates principle, not party. He was married, in 1853, to Miss Mary Quipps, of Wisconsin. They have three children--Melissa (now Mrs. G. A. McNorton), Otto and Cedora.

J. R. YOUNG, coal dealer, was born in Clark County, KY., April 8, 1833. When one year of age came to Clay County, Mo., with parents his father, Thomas, being among the pioneer farmers in that part. J. R. was there educated and reared. In 1853 he removed to Iowa, residing until 1857, when he came to Valley Falls. He had, however, visited Kansas with a view of locating, in 1854 He built a store on Sycamore street, and engaged mercantile pursuits, in which branch he was identified until 1872, when he embarked in the coal trade. Being one of the pioneers, Mr. Young has been identified with this growth and development of Jefferson County, and has contributed amply toward the progress of Valley Falls. He has been twice married, first in 1859, to Miss Fannie Jessy, now deceased; by this marriage he has three children--Philo, Toula, and Jessie. In 1879, Miss Lou. Ray, of Leavenworth, became his wife. By this union they have one child, Spartian. Mr. Young is a member of I. O. O. F.

[TOC] [part 11] [part 9] [Cutler's History]