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


[TOC] [part 8] [part 6] [Cutler's History]


Florence is at the junction of Doyle Creek and the Cottonwood, ten miles southeast of Marion Center.

December 1, 1870, Samuel J. Crawford, President of the Florence Town Company, had filed for record a plat of Florence that embraced the northwest quarter of Section 7, Town 21, Range 5. Kimball's Addition was made April 30, 1871, containing the northeast quarter of Section 12, Town 21, Range 4. Barker's Addition was made June 30, 1871 and J. B. McAfee's July 6, 1871, taking in the southwest quarter of the southwest quarter of Section 6, Town 21, Range 5. This is the oldest railroad town in the county, situated at the junction of Doyle Creek and the Cottonwood. Was incorporated as a city of the third class on June 12, 1872. This is an important eating station on the A. T.& S. F. R. R. The road has a south branch from this place, running into Butler County. Surrounding the place are the finest and most available stone quarries that have been opened in Western Kansas.

W. M. Mitchell and John McReynolds, In April, 1871, removed the material of the Miami County Advertiser from Paola to Florence, and began the publication April 22, of the Florence Pioneer C. H. and J. A. Kurtz came into possession of the paper the following autumn but in the spring of 1872, the property was in litigation, the Kurtz brothers were ejected, and a Mr. Aller, a banker, assumed the control, until in the spring of 1873, when he absconded. At the solicitation of the people of Florence, E. W. Hoch issued the paper for six months, awaiting the result of the trial, and then because of its unprofitableness discontinued its publication. In the spring of 1874, the Messrs. Kurtz recovered possession of the property, removed to August, Butler County, where they now publish the Southern Kansas Gazette.

June 23, 1876, Isaac Howe and H. D. Morgan started the FlorenceHerald April 15, 1882, Mr. Morgan, then sole proprietor, sold to White & Hanchett, and in the latter part of May, J. B. Crouch became editor and proprietor.

There are four church organizations and all but the Baptists have a house of worship. Rev. J. A. Heagy is the pastor.

The Methodist Episcopal Church was completed in 1881; it cost about $3,500. Its membership is about sixty. Rev. J. Hartman is pastor.

The Presbyterian Church was rebuilt in 1882. It has about fifty members. Rev. P. J. Leenhouse is pastor.

The Catholics have a neat house of worship, erected in 1871. Rev. N. Fowler, pastor.

Advance Lodge, No. 114, A. F. & A. M., R. T. Batty, M.; J. Ware Butterfield, Secretary.

Grand Valley Lodge, No. 127, I. O. O. F. has a hall at the corner of Main and Third streets. P. J. Anderson, N. G.

Florence Lodge, No. 1,082, K. of H. C. W. Miller, Dictator; B. F. Houlton, Reporter.

Banner Lodge, No. 386, K. of L. Meetings every alternative Tuesday evening at Knight's Hall.

There are four teachers in the Florence public schools, all females; Miss Frankie David, Principal. There are 360 children of school age, and they are distributed in three different buildings. The old school building was erected in 1868. The new substantial stone edifice will cost $7,500, and will be opened in 1883.

The Marion Bank has a capital of $50,000. Charles Barker, President; P. B. Plumb, Vice President; R. T. Batty, Cashier. Here is a superior water-power flouring mill, six hotel keepers, four grocery stores, four general stores, three meat markets, three livery stables, three dealers and quarrymen of Florence stone, three blacksmiths, two druggists, two lumber dealers, two cattle shippers and grain dealers, two milliners, three coal dealers, one hardware merchant, one boot and shoe dealer, one saddle and harness maker, one baker, one auctioneer, one photographer, one jeweler, one dentist, four physicians, one pork packer, one billiard saloon, one furniture establishment, two wagon-makers, four loan, insurance and real estate agents.

W. W. Stanford is Postmaster.

G. J. Hartman is station agent and Mayor of the city; F. W. File, Pension Agent and City Clerk; A. Z. Hamilton, City Treasurer; James Carter, Police Judge; J. Ware Butterfield, City Attorney; G. F. Minturn, Marshal; P. Hinkle, President Board of Councilmen.


The Florence Creamery, which is destined to become one of the most important manufacturing interests of Marion County and of the flourishing city of Florence was completed and began operations in May, 1883. The enterprise owes its existence to the joint efforts and capital of the citizens of Florence, as the cash capital, $7,000 was all contributed by the business men of the place. The contract for the building and machinery was let to John. W. Hall, of Osceola, Iowa, and the creamery is built after the model of the Wellington Creamery. The main building is 32 x 46, and the ice house 30 x 50, with a capacity of 400 tons of ice. The churn and vat room is 26 feet square, containing two revolving churns, which will hold 275 gallons of cream each. In this room are also located the vats, two in number, which will hold 400 gallons each. Adjoining this department on the north are two rooms for working butter, 14 x 16 feet in size. In the first is located an immense circular butter worker, from which can be turned off 75 pounds of butter in ten minutes. The entire machinery is operated by a ten horse power engine of the most approved pattern. Hot and cold water is supplied to all parts of the apparatus by pipes connected with pumps and the engine. Mr. Charley Miller is President of the Association.


T. P. ALEXANDER, dealer in hardware and agricultural implements, came to Emporia in 1870, and came from there to Florence in May, 1871. Opened a small stock, but has built up a fine trade, and now has as complete a store as can be found in the county. In 1878, he built his present commodious store room, which is of stone, 25 x 125 feet. In the rear, and separate from the store, is a stone ware room 25 x 50 feet. His stock will average in value $12,000. He was born in Eugene, Vermillion Co., Ind., August 26, 1840. When seventeen, he removed to Danville, Ill., where, in 1861, he enlisted in the Eleventh Indiana Infantry. He participated in the engagements of Fort Donelson, Shiloh. Fort Gibson. Champion Hill, Winchester, Va., Fisher's Hill and Cedar Creek. Was wounded at Champion Hill and was in the hospital five months. Rejoined his command at New Orleans, and remained with it until mustered out. Was promoted to Second Lieutenant in May, 1865. Was married at Danville, Ill., in 1868 to Miss Esther Stewart. Mr. Alexander was the first Mayor of the city and now holds that position. He has been Township Treasurer since 1872 and School District Treasurer since 1877. Mr. A. has four children -- James, Lucy, John and Mary. His father, William Alexander was a pioneer of Eugene, Ind., locating there in 1838. His mother, Esther Henry was born in Morristown, Penn. Mr. Alexander is one of the Board of Directors of the Florence Creamery.

CHARLES BARKER, farmer and stock-raiser, located here in the fall of 1866, and before the Santa Fe Railroad was built he had to drive his cattle to Abilene for shipment. Sold part of his land to the Florence Town Company. On the organization of the Marion Bank in 1873, Mr. B. became President and has since held that position. Mr. B. was born in Boone County, Ind., July 15, 1842, and remained four years, and removed to Wayne County where he engaged in farming and stock raising until coming to Kansas. Mr. Barker was married there in 1855, to Miss Lucinthia Fouts, of Putnam County, Ind. They have four children -- Diana, Lafayette, Bert and Anna. Was elected County Commissioner in 1867, and held the office six years. He is one of the stockholders of the Florence Creamery.

R. T. BATTY, Cashier of Marion Bank, was born in Providence, R. I., September 16, 1849. When nine years of age, his parents located in Topeka. There Mr. B. learned the tinsmith's trade and engaged in that for some three years. Afterward he went with a freighting outfit to Colorado, being absent about two years. On his return, he engaged in the hardware trade in Topeka, and in 1871, in partnership with his brother, engaged in the hardware business at Florence. In 1875, he became Cashier of the bank, and has since held that position. He was married May 15, 1880, at Florence, to Miss Mary E. Riggs, daughter of James D. Riggs, one of the early settlers of Marion County. They have one child -- Andrew F. He is a member of Advance Lodge, No. 114, A. F .& A. M., Florence.

[Picture of T. J. Conry, M.D.] DR. T. J. CONRY, physician and surgeon, located here in May, 1871; was born in Buffalo, N. Y., November 24, 1839. His father, Capt. Jon W. Conry was Captain of the ship Milwaukee, a vessel of the Evans line, and was shipwrecked at the mouth of the Kalamazoo River in Lake Michigan, in November, 1842. After his father's death, his mother moved to Carroll County, Ohio, in 1843. Dr. Conry returned to Buffalo in 1860 and engaged in the book business there until 1868, when he came West to Kansas City, Mo., where he graduated in the College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1871, and afterward attended lectures at Rush Medical College, Chicago. He was married at Carrollton, Ohio, in 1862 to Miss Maggie Nivin, and has three children living -- William H., of Topeka, Daisy and Lizzie A. His wife died in 1877 and he was married to his present wife in 1878, Miss Gussie A. Holmberg, who graduated from the Women's Medical College in Chicago in 1881, and who is now practicing her profession with her husband. Dr. C. was appointed United States Medical Examiner in 1872. He is a member of the Kansas State Medical Society; is also a member of the A. F. & A. M., R. A. M., and K. of H., and is a stockholder in the Florence Building Association and Creamery.

J. B. CROUCH, attorney at law, Florence, came to Marion County in 1881. He was born in St. Albans, Kanawha Co., W. Va., September 17, 1851; and in 1869, entered the newspaper business in Charleston. In 1874, he married Miss Lida E. McIntire, a native of Gallipolis, Ohio, and in the following year removed to the latter State and took a position on the CambridgeJeffersonian Returned to his native State in 1878, and in partnership with William Lawrence, son of ex-Congressman Lawrence of Ohio, founded the Grafton Eagle. He held the position of Committee Clerk in the West Virginia Legislature at its session in 1879, after which he sold his interest in the Grafton Eagle and commenced the publication of the Moundsville Commercial. This paper was one of the only three or four in the State that supported the action of A. W. Campbell in resisting the Conklin expulsion resolutions in the Chicago Convention; but Republican sentiment in the State was soon reversed by the more thoughtful members of the party, and in a short time Mr. Crouch witnessed a demonstration in the city of Wheeling, at which the correctness of his position was acknowledged by the highest commendations being bestowed upon Mr. Campbell. While publishing the Commercial, Mr. Crouch was admitted to the bar upon examination by the Supreme Judges of West Virginia, and in December of the same year he returned to Cambridge, Ohio, and accepted an editorial connection with the Jeffersonian. Owing to ill health of self and wife, he severed his connection with that paper, came to Kansas and took a position on the editorial staff of the Atchison Evening Globe In 1881, he established the Hillsboro Intelligencer, and in April, the following year, he bought the Florence Herald, and consolidated the two papers. January 20, 1882, he sold the Herald to A. M. White, since which time he has devoted himself to the practice of law.

D. C. DESMOND, photographer, located here in August, 1882. He was born in Geneva, N. Y., November 8, 1853. Moved to La Salle County, Ill., when quite young, and remained three years. Then removed to Dubuque, Iowa, and remained until 1876, when he moved to Malvern, Iowa. He there learned the photographic art and traveled with a car though Iowa, Nebraska, Texas and New Mexico. He was married in April, 1881, to Miss Martha Billups, of Missouri.

[Picture of J. C. Dwelle] J. C. DWELLE, attorney at law and real estate agent, located at Cedar Point, Chase Co., Kan., in 1870. Was born in Ontario County, N. Y., April 10, 1846. Resided there until 1866, engaged in farming, and removed to Jackson County, Mich., Entered the law department of Michigan University the same year, and pursued his studies, some two years since moving to Kansas, and has been engaged in farming and stock raising. Was admitted to practice in the December term, 1882, of the District Court of Chase County, before Hon. S. R. Peters, Judge. In 1875, he ran for Representative of Chase County, against the notorious S. N. Wood, and has been connected very prominently with the politics of the county until recently. Has been extensively engaged in raising fine wool sheep for the last six years, and now has a large ranch in Chase County. He was married January 8, 1868, at Gorham, Ontario Co., N. Y. to Miss Amelia A. Lake, of that county. They have six children -- Johanna M., Harold L., James C., Horatio S., Frank A. and Louis. Mr. Dwelle was active in all matters of substantial interest in Chase County during his long residence there. He is a member of the M. E. Church.

REV. W. F. FILE born October 16, 1848, in Bond County, Ill.; married Miss Sinah M. Rankin, April 24, 1873; was educated in the common schools of the county principally but spent some time in the Greenville High School and at Shurtleff College; taught school a number of years before entering the ministry; was ordained to the Baptist's ministry January 16, 1876; came to Kansas immediately afterward; settled first as pastor of the First Baptist Church of Wichita; remained pastor from June, 1876, to February, 1877, when he resigned and moved to Marion County, when he became pastor of the Zion Star and Catlin Valley Churches. In July, 1879, he purchase the Florence Herald, and was editor and proprietor of that journal until December, 1880, when he severed his connection with the paper and became pastor of the First Baptist Church; resigned after serving more than a year to take a mission field embracing Chase and part of Marion Counties; has been an active worker in the temperance cause and has stood fearlessly for his opinions at all times.

REV. EDWARD P. FOSTER, pastor of the Presbyterian Church, was born at Bloom Furnace, Scioto County, Ohio, October 5, 1853. Removed to Kentucky when quite young, and when seventeen years of age removed to Marietta, Ohio, where he entered college, graduating in the class of 1874, then spent three years at Yale and Union, N. Y. theological seminaries, graduation, and remained until 1880, when he visited Europe, attending lectures six months at each of the great universities -- Berlin and Leipsic. On his return to this country, he was supply of the Eureka church for four months and Caldwell for one year, and came thence to Florence again. He was married, June 28, 1882, to Miss Julia Fitch.

C. M. HEATH, livery, feed and sale stable, came to the State in 1874, and located on a farm four miles north of Florence. In 1876, built his present commodious barn and removed to the town. Was born in Merrimac County, N. H., May 13, 1842, his father being David G. Heath, and his mother's maiden name Sarah S. Moore, both natives of New Hampshire. His great-grandfather, Col. Jesse Heath, was an officer in the Revolutionary war and cleared the farm where two generations have since resided. Mr. Heath attended Franklin Academy, and in 1861, enlisted in the Third New Hampshire Volunteer Infantry as wagon master. Was at the bombardment of Port Royal, and was commissioned First Lieutenant in 1862, but detailed as Division Wagonmaster and remained until 1863. He returned to Franklin and engaged in mercantile business until 1865 then went to Boston, Mass. He came west to St. Joe, Mo., soon after, and took a freight train to Denver. He remained in the territories two years and then returned to New Hampshire, and was appointed State Agent for New Hampshire of the Phoenix Mutual Life Insurance Company, which he held three years, after which he engaged in mercantile pursuits at Franklin, N. H., until coming to Kansas. He was married March 11, 1874, at Franklin, to Miss Ellen M. Colby, of Henniker, N. H. Mr. Heath was Deputy Sheriff under Mr. Howe, of Marion County.

PHILLIP HINKLE, Justice of the Peace and Collector, also proprietor of extensive stone quarries near the city. Located in Florence in 1873. Engaged in mercantile business until 1879. Was born in Bucks County, Penn., June 14, 1836. In the spring of 1861, he enlisted in the Fifty-second Pennsylvania Infantry. At the expiration of his term of service, he re-enlisted in Company G, One Hundred and Fourth Pennsylvania Infantry and was commissioned First Lieutenant. He was in Key's Army Corps, Cozier's Division, Army of the Potomac. Participated in all the battles of the Peninsular campaign, and was afterward on detached service. Was promoted to Captain after the battle of Seven Pines, and was mustered out at Harrisburg in 1864. Returned to Bucks County and learned the trade of a plasterer. After coming to Kansas, he resided in Topeka and Emporia, before removing to Florence. He has been a member of the City Council, and Police Judge; his stone quarries are among the most important industries of Florence, the pay-roll amounting to $1,000 per month. Mr. Hinkle is a member of the Grand Valley Lodge No. 127, I. O. O. F., A. F. & A. M., and G. A. R.

S. W. HOWE, insurance and real estate, located in Kansas in 1873, at first engaged in Government land survey, and afterward, assisted in appraising A. T. & S. F. Railroad lands. Was elected sheriff of Marion County in 1877, and held the office two terms. Was born in Caledonia County, Vt., April 18, 1843. He enlisted in the army July, 1863, in Company D, Sixth Vermont Infantry and participated in the engagements of Cold Harbor, Petersburg, and the Shenandoah Valley campaign, and was mustered out June 26, 1865. He removed to Madison, Wis., and engaged in general merchandise until coming to Kansas. He was married November 13, 1879, in Dane County, Wis., to Miss Elizabeth Colby, a native of New York. They have one child -- Edith. While on the frontier, engaged in surveying lands, Mr. Howe and party had some hair-breadth escapes from hostile bands of Indians and August 24, 1874, six of the party were surprised, captured and massacred by the Indians. Mr. Howe is a member of the A. F. & A. M. of Florence.

THOMAS H. KELLY, conductor on the Douglas Branch of the A. T.& S. F. Mr. K. is a veteran with the company and there are few, if any, that have been with them longer; he commencing in 1873, as an engineer on the main line. At that time it had no branches. He continued in that capacity up to 1877, in which year, a terrible casualty befell him three miles west of Elmdale. In this accident, his engine jumped the track went down an embankment, and being unable to extricate himself, was badly scalded by the escaping steam, besides being severely bruised. After three months, he had sufficiently recovered to again be on duty, and was assigned the conductor's position on the main line, and on the completion of the branch to El Dorado, took the route he now runs. Since coming to the state, Mr. K. has been a resident of Topeka, Emporia, El Dorado and Florence. He was the engineer that pulled the first train into Pueblo, Colo., which was in 1876. The subject of this sketch was born at Hales Corners, Milwaukee Co., Wis., August 25, 1847; was educated and reared in Sheboygan county, Wis. In 1864, he made his departure in railroading with the C. & N. W., running between Chicago and Janesville. Previous to 1873, had been for a time on the Central Railroad of Iowa. Mr. K. was married in Albia, Iowa, to Miss Addie Wilson. They have one child -- Frankie.

CHARLES W. MILLER, dealer in general merchandise, began business here in 1874 with a small stock of goods, but has steadily increased his stock, until now he enjoys a fine trade, and carries a stock from $12,000 to $15,000 and his annual trade will reach $50,000. He was born in Monroe County, Mich., in 1842. In 1861, he enlisted in the Fifth Indiana Light Artillery. Was with his command at Shiloh, Chickamauga, Resaca, Mission Ridge, Stone River and Perryville; at the latter engagement, he was wounded by the explosion of an ammunition chest, and was promoted to Sergeant. Returned to Cold Water, Mich., and clerked five years. He was married at Cold Water, Mich., in 1867, to Miss E. J. Lincoln, of that city. They have three children -- Harry, Fannie, and Maud. Has been a member of the City Council several terms and Mayor three terms. He is also at the present time President of the Florence Creamery Association, a chartered company with a paid up capital of $7,000.

F. S. MITCHELL, dealer in furniture and undertaking goods, came here in 1871, locating in Chase County. Engaged in farming until 1876, when he came to Florence. He carries a stock of about $3,000 and his annual trade will reach $6,000. Mr. M. was born in Orange County, N. Y., November 6, 1845, and when ten years of age moved to McHenry County, Ill., and learned the trade of a cabinet-maker. Enlisted in 1862, in Company G, Second Battalion Eighteenth United States Regulars. Was at Missionary Ridge in and the Atlanta campaign. Mustered out in 1865. He was married May 1, 1868, at Mechanicsville, Iowa, to Miss Matilda McMullen of Ohio, and they have two children -- Myrtie and Mabel. Is a member of the City Council and M. E. Church; also a member of K. of H., and A. F. & A. M.

CAPT. THOMAS MORRISON, real estate and loan business, agent for the A. T.& S. F. R. R. lands, came to Emporia in 1870, where he engaged in the lumber trade until 1877. He was born in Washington County, Vt., December 22, 1823. He went to sea when twelve years of age and remained for twenty-eight years, during which time he was commanding officer and part owner of several vessels. He was married June 2, 1856, at Edgartown, Mass., to Miss Elizabeth P. Morse, and they have one child -- Lelia M. He was elected Mayor of Emporia in 1876 and was a member of the City Council five years. Has been Mayor and Councilman of Florence. Is a member of K. of H., of Emporia.

J. H. PALMER, auctioneer and commission merchant, came to Kansas in 1872, and located on a farm eleven miles northwest of Peabody; came to Florence in March, 1876. Was born in Bourbon County, Ky., May 17, 1816; learned the carpenter's trade. Enlisted in 1860, in Company C., Seventeenth Ohio Infantry. served three months and re-enlisted in Company C., Fortieth Ohio; was discharged December 24, 1862, on account of disability. He has been twice married -- first in 1839, to Arabella Cryder, who had six children, two of whom are now living -- S. C. and J. N. Mrs. P. died September 1, 1876, and he was married to Mrs. Mary E. Stevens, November 18, 1878. Mr. P. is a member of the G. A. R.

WILLIS POPE, farmer, Lincolnville, owns 240 acres of land on section 214. Now has 130 head of cattle and a herd of twenty head of Durham thoroughbred cattle, from the celebrated herd of J. H. Pickard, of Macon County, Ill. Mr. Pope was a resident of Macon County fifty years, and the thriving cities of Springfield, Bloomington and Decatur have grown up within his recollection. He came to Kansas in the spring of 1877. Was married in 1857, at Decatur, Ill., to Miss Lucinda Allison of Miami County, Ohio, and they have six children living -- W. B., now in the employ of the Champion Reaper Company, Chicago; N. A., in the stock business with his father; Augusta, R. J. Oglesby, Alice and Willis T. Mr. Pope is a member of the Decatur Lodge, No. 8, A. F. & A. M., Decatur, Ill.

H. A. STURGES, dealer in lumber, pumps and windmills; opened his business in 1879, and carries a stock of about $2,000, while his trade will reach $7,000. Was born in Crawfordsville, Ind., June 20, 1835. About 1841, he removed to St. Louis, Mo., Enlisted in May, 1862, in Company F, Thirty-third Illinois Infantry, and was promoted to Second Lieutenant. He participated in the engagements at Murfreesboro and Vicksburg and was mustered out in 1863. He entered the mercantile business at Carlinville, McCoupin County, Ill., where he remained until coming to Kansas. Was married April 13, 1865, at that place, to Miss Hannah Underkoeffer, and has three children, Jessie, Walter and Frank. Learned civil engineering, by practice, when a young man; his residence is located at the corner of fifth and Doyle streets. It is 16 x 24 feet, two stories, hip roof built in 1882 at a cost of $550. Mr. Sturges is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

F. W. R. ZACHORECKY, manufacturer of and dealer in boots and shoes, located here in 1871, and carries a stock of $4,000 and his trade will average $5,000. He was born in Warsaw, Russia, March 25, 1837; he came to America in 1866, and worked nearly all the principal cities of the East before locating here. Was married August 3, 1873, at Florence, Kan., to Miss Matta C. Calleson, born in Kashoe, Denmark. He owns eighty acres of land located three miles southeast of Florence.

[TOC] [part 8] [part 6] [Cutler's History]